Chomsky: Obama’s global assassination campaign

The worst global terrorism campaign under way right now is Obama’s global assassination campaign. The drone campaign. Notice that there’s a debate in the United States when he decides to murder Americans like al-Awlaki; is that legitimate or not?

What about the other people? The people that are being murdered are suspects.

Go back 800 years again to Magna Carta. We’re going to commemorate its 800th anniversary next year, probably morn its disappearance. The core concept developed in Magna Carta was what we call presumption of innocence. And what it stated is that a free man cannot be subjected to state punishment without due process, without trial by a jury of peers. Now, free man was a very limited concept in the 13th century. Of course it excluded women, it excluded people who weren’t free, and so on. It gradually expanded over the centuries. So it’s embedded in the constitution, also with limits, the 14th Amendment, other limits. But now it’s being contracted. The drone campaign eliminates presumption of innocence.

The way it works is, Obama and his advisers get together Tuesday morning and decide who they are going to kill that day. The concept ‘guilty’ means Obama decided to murder you. That’s a regression that goes back 800 years. That’s pretty serious.

And what’s more serious is it’s not discussed. The only thing that’s discussed is the killing of Americans. Are Americans a difference species? Who says you can kill other suspects? There is some talk about collateral damage; what about the people who are just standing around and get killed Well yeah, that’s bad, but what about the people you’re aiming at? They are suspects.

You haven’t shown proof of anything about them. Just somebody the government wants to kill.

 

Noam Chomsky | Talks at Google (via insideonemind)

Noam Chomsky: Indigenous People Are In The Lead

“There is resistance: in Canada it’s coming from First Nations. But it’s worth remembering that that’s a world-wide phenomenon. Throughout the world, the indigenous populations are in the lead. They are actually taking the lead in trying to protect the earth. That’s extremely significant.”

Chomsky argued that this resistance is supported by one of the most ancient documents of English law, the nearly 800-year old Magna Carta. For in addition to asserting civil rights like the presumption of innocence and the right to jury trial, the Magna Carta included a “Charter of the Forests,” which “had to do with protecting the commons”—all of the commonly shared things in nature that sustain human life—“from the depredations of power.”

Since the development of capitalism, Chomsky said, the commons have been under attack. “What Canada and the US and others are doing now,” he added, “is trying to take away what is left of the commons, includ[ing] the global environment—privatize it, take it away.”

 

Noam Chomsky: Indigenous People Are In The Lead