Noam Chomsky, professor of linguistics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, author of over 30 books and renowned political activist, made a rare appearance in Colorado this past weekend.
The man the New York Times states is “arguably the most important intellectual alive” leaned against the podium Friday evening in a basketball gym at Auraria Campus in Denver, and using recent newspaper headlines, engaged in the history of why America is currently the most feared nation in the world.
American “pre-emptive war” foreign policy, which was publicly presented as the National Security Policy in September, declares an imperial grand vision that will allow the United States to dominate the world, Chomsky said.
American foreign policy was just one among many examples Chomsky used to explain the growing anti-American sentiment around the globe.
“Nobody can deter the U.S. by force, but they can by terror and weapons of mass destruction,” Chomsky said.
Chomsky said that Iraq is a devastated and weak nation and that Iran and Kuwait do not even fear Saddam Hussein or consider Iraq a threat.
He also said that the Bush Administration’s propaganda campaign, which coincided with Congressional elections in October of 2002, created a misinformed fear that Iraq posed a threat to U.S. security and that Saddam Hussein was involved with the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
“Ever since I was born at the beginning of the Reagan era, there has always been some official enemy that the government, and reflexively the corporate media, has told me to be afraid of,” said Matt Glesmann, a political science major.
Chomsky made clear that most people around the world do not view the war in Iraq as a justified war.
The Bush Administration is not a conservative agency, they are radical and aggressive, Chomsky said.
“September 11th was a horrible atrocity and has been used as a pretext all over the world, from dictatorships to democracies, to discipline their nations,” Chomsky said.
Aligning the current U.S. Administration with the Reagan era, Chomsky said that U.S. liberties are at risk of being taken away.
American rights and liberties were not handed over to citizens by a concerned and nurturing government, they were won by the struggles of active citizens, Chomsky said.
He called for an active educational campaign to re-inform Americans of the truth. Most international news is not broadcast in the states and the American people never hear about it, Chomsky said.
“What we must do is resist the anti-democratic policies of our government, both domestically and internationally,” Glesmann said. “If we fail to meet this responsibility, we may very well be the first ever species to cause its own distinction.”
Chomsky participated in a peace rally in Boulder on Saturday afternoon and concluded his visit with a final discussion on Iraq at the Macky Auditorium in Boulder, Saturday night to benefit KGNU Boulder’s independent community radio.