From Obama's statement today on Malaysia Airlines flight 17:
Yesterday Malaysian Airlines Flight MH 17 took off from Amsterdam and was shot down over Ukraine near the Russian border. Nearly 300 innocent lives were taken -- men, women, children, infants who had nothing to do with the crisis in Ukraine. Their deaths are a [sic] outrage of unspeakable proportions.It's funny how the 298 deaths aboard flight MH17 are an "outrage of unspeakable proportions," but the 400+ civilian deaths in Pakistan due to US drone strikes are not similarly outrageous to Obama. (And that's just Pakistan!)
Apparently it's only an "outrage" to Obama if the event can somehow be twisted around to needle the government's enemy du jour, Vladimir Putin. When a disaster can be used to advance neocon and statist agendas to bang the war drum against Russia, it's an outrage. When the US kills some 200 Pakistani children whilst trying to FIGHT THE WAR ON TERRORISM™, that's just peachy.
Let's all shout how horrible Putin is, because some (alleged) pro-Russian rebels (allegedly) shot down MH17 with (alleged) Russian weaponry. Those 298 innocent deaths are somehow worse and more worthy of comment than the violence perpetuated by the United States military as it stabs, shoots, drones, beats, pepper sprays, tortures, and mutilates many hundreds more around the globe, as all governments do.
(And don't even get me started on the logical next step that the US government has already embarked on: assassinating its own citizens.)
I won't belittle the urge of people of conscience to "pray for MH17." But I would suggest that if such people are not also praying for the victims of government aggression at home and abroad, then perhaps some soul-searching is in order.
States are clumsy and inept in many ways, thank God; but they are exceptionally good at wreaking death and destruction.Note: The image above is a rare exception to my policy of only using public domain pictures on this site. The picture of MH17 wreckage is from The Guardian, and the drone image is from Pakistan Today. I elected to use these non-public domain sources because: 1) In the case of MH17, there are not (yet) any public domain photos available that I know of; and 2) I could not find any decent military drone images from public domain sources.
~Robert Higgs, "The State is Too Dangerous to Tolerate"