KONY 2012! The words have blared out at us in the past week. Complete with celebrity endorsements from P.Diddy to George Clooney, the cause is major "news."
We're told that millions have watched the video and cried out for troops to go to Uganda to find and stop the monster, Joseph Kony, who it is said kidnaps thousands of children and turns them into killing machines and/or prostitutes for the Lord's Resistance Army. I don't know if millions cried out--I can only take their word for it. But if they did, it's because they've been duped once again by slick media, owned and controlled by the same handful of companies who own and control big business, big oil, and the big war machine of the United States.
It's pretty much undisputed that Kony and his atrocities have been around for many years, and barely registered a blip on the radar of concern by the American government--until now. And suddenly, with one heartstring-pulling propaganda piece, Kony and all those poor children are a cause celebre, and the Congress has passed a resolution to dispatch American troops anywhere in Africa to stop Kony and "protect" civilians.
Now, I know I may seem a bit of a cynic when it comes to these things, but is it a coincidence that, more than 20 years into Kony's LRA miscreations, more than 5 years after he fled Uganda, we've suddenly seen the light and have to get serious about finding and stopping Kony. Just now.
Just shortly after the largest land-based oil reserves in the world, about 2.5 billion barrels, were found under Uganda.
Just after a scandal arose in which it was exposed that officials in the Ugandan government were accepting bribes from big, multi-national oil companies.
Just after President Obama sent military "advisors" over to Uganda, Sudan, and Democratic Republic of Congo. In fact, the Kony 2012 film says directly that it's point is to demand that the advisors stay right where they are--occupying yet another country with oil. From the film's narration:
We know what to do. Here it is, ready? In order for Kony to be arrested this year, the Ugandan military has to find him. In order to find him, they need the technology and training to track him in the vast jungle. That's where the American advisors come in. But in order for the American advisors to be there, the American government has to deploy them. They've done that, but if the government doesn't believe the people care about Kony, the mission will be cancelled. In order for the people to care, they have to know. And they will only know if Kony's name is everywhere.
And, it seems, just as it looks like we're going to get our collective heinies thrown out of Afghanistan for all the protecting of civilians our "training advisors" have been doing--by urinating on bodies, burning Qu'rans, and murdering children in door-to-door massacre parties (gosh, we're awfully sorry about all that).
So, the whole Kony 2012 campaign looks suspiciously like a manipulation--one concocted at the intersection of Compassion Street and Naivete Boulevard--one designed to get well-meaning, but uninformed Americans to beg to get into yet another bottomless, ill-defined, and unending military adventure--over oil. And if there is another war, it will be because we've once again bought the ridiculously worn idea that war breeds peace, and bombing and shooting at people protects them. George Orwell is currently rolling over in his grave. Some days I envy him. He got to tell people about this stuff from a safe distance of years.
For more information, read the article here, and watch the very good video by James Corbett of the Corbett Report.