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Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Press Release-Ward Churchill

Press Release - Ward Churchill

January 31, 2005

In the last few days there has been widespread and grossly inaccurate media coverage concerning my analysis of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, coverage that has resulted in defamation of my character and threats against my life. What I actually said has been lost, indeed turned into the opposite of itself, and I hope the following facts will be reported at least to the same extent that the fabrications have been.

* The piece circulating on the internet was developed into a book, On the Justice of Roosting Chickens. Most of the book is a detailed chronology of U.S. military interventions since 1776 and U.S. violations of international law since World War II. My point is that we cannot allow the U.S. government, acting in our name, to engage in massive violations of international law and fundamental human rights and not expect to reap the consequences.

* I am not a “defender” of the September 11 attacks, but simply pointing out that if U.S. foreign policy results in massive death and destruction abroad, we cannot feign innocence when some of that destruction is returned. I have never said that people “should” engage in armed attacks on the United States, but that such attacks are a natural and unavoidable consequence of unlawful U.S. policy. As Martin Luther King, quoting Robert F. Kennedy, said, “Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable.”

* This is not to say that I advocate violence; as a U.S. soldier in Vietnam I witnessed and participated in more violence than I ever wish to see. What I am saying is that if we want an end to violence, especially that perpetrated against civilians, we must take the responsibility for halting the slaughter perpetrated by the United States around the world. My feelings are reflected in Dr. King’s April 1967 Riverside speech, where, when asked about the wave of urban rebellions in U.S. cities, he said, “I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed . . . without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today – my own government.”

* In 1996 Madeleine Albright, then Ambassador to the UN and soon to be U.S. Secretary of State, did not dispute that 500,000 Iraqi children had died as a result of economic sanctions, but stated on national television that “we” had decided it was “worth the cost.” I mourn the victims of the September 11 attacks, just as I mourn the deaths of those Iraqi children, the more than 3 million people killed in the war in Indochina, those who died in the U.S. invasions of Grenada, Panama and elsewhere in Central America, the victims of the transatlantic slave trade, and the indigenous peoples still subjected to genocidal policies. If we respond with callous disregard to the deaths of others, we can only expect equal callousness to American deaths.

* Finally, I have never characterized all the September 11 victims as “Nazis.” What I said was that the “technocrats of empire” working in the World Trade Center were the equivalent of “little Eichmanns.” Adolf Eichmann was not charged with direct killing but with ensuring the smooth running of the infrastructure that enabled the Nazi genocide. Similarly, German industrialists were legitimately targeted by the Allies.

* It is not disputed that the Pentagon was a military target, or that a CIA office was situated in the World Trade Center. Following the logic by which U.S. Defense Department spokespersons have consistently sought to justify target selection in places like Baghdad, this placement of an element of the American “command and control infrastructure” in an ostensibly civilian facility converted the Trade Center itself into a “legitimate” target. Again following U.S. military doctrine, as announced in briefing after briefing, those who did not work for the CIA but were nonetheless killed in the attack amounted to no more than “collateral damage.” If the U.S. public is prepared to accept these “standards” when the are routinely applied to other people, they should be not be surprised when the same standards are applied to them.

* It should be emphasized that I applied the “little Eichmanns” characterization only to those described as “technicians.” Thus, it was obviously not directed to the children, janitors, food service workers, firemen and random passers-by killed in the 9-1-1 attack. According to Pentagon logic, were simply part of the collateral damage. Ugly? Yes. Hurtful? Yes. And that’s my point. It’s no less ugly, painful or dehumanizing a description when applied to Iraqis, Palestinians, or anyone else. If we ourselves do not want to be treated in this fashion, we must refuse to allow others to be similarly devalued and dehumanized in our name.

* The bottom line of my argument is that the best and perhaps only way to prevent 9-1-1-style attacks on the U.S. is for American citizens to compel their government to comply with the rule of law. The lesson of Nuremberg is that this is not only our right, but our obligation. To the extent we shirk this responsibility, we, like the “Good Germans” of the 1930s and ’40s, are complicit in its actions and have no legitimate basis for complaint when we suffer the consequences. This, of course, includes me, personally, as well as my family, no less than anyone else.

* These points are clearly stated and documented in my book, On the Justice of Roosting Chickens, which recently won Honorary Mention for the Gustavus Myer Human Rights Award. for best writing on human rights. Some people will, of course, disagree with my analysis, but it presents questions that must be addressed in academic and public debate if we are to find a real solution to the violence that pervades today’s world. The gross distortions of what I actually said can only be viewed as an attempt to distract the public from the real issues at hand and to further stifle freedom of speech and academic debate in this country.

Ward Churchill

Boulder, Colorado

January 31, 2005

10 Comments:

At 5:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

unfortunately i think he is right

 
At 7:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you but fear the Republican Governor will have his way and influence the board or Regents to vote you out. Another martyr.

 
At 12:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for having the courage to shed light on these issues. More people support you than you may think.

 
At 8:33 AM, Blogger CanNative said...

As usual, uneducated people with nothing better to do like to spend their time attacking people with credibility. Ask questions, point out that something is wrong and the government watchdogs come looking for you. Funny how freedom of the press is used to attack some of it's own actual free thinkers. Ward Churchill is as always - write!!!!

 
At 1:55 PM, Blogger Julaybib said...

Salaams

I have emailed my support to you Ward, and also published it on my blog.

I consider your views legitimate and worthy, and I was saddened to hear that your ideas have been so wickedly mispresented.

By the way, I have purchased your book!

Peace

Yakoub Islam

 
At 6:59 AM, Blogger digitalwanderer said...

Why are they calling you a traitor? Because you're trying to hold them accountable for their actions or something weird like that?

When did our country go nuts? :|

 
At 3:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a supplement, please note the following.

Introduction: In a Pittsburgh federal court a well connected corporate crony has suggested a novice "free speech" argument and the legal question is waddling without any legal precedent in need of an activist court.

Creating the free speech crisis is a "red herring" to draw attention away from the plain and clear evidence of the Pittsburgh Federal Court proceeding (best example of the corruption).

Ward Churchill was a relatively unknown professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, until Bill O'Reilly reported a piece about him and requested his audience to make a fuss. His provacative essay was written more than three years ago.

The connection:

Ms. ElizaBETH Hoffman is the President of Colorado University. Go to http://www.hss.caltech.edu/Photos/Alumni/HoffmanElizabeth.jpg and/or http://www.colorado.edu/Carillon/volume47/images/1.jpg to view her picture.

Ms. BETH (Rue) Kotcella Buchanan is the U.S. Attorney for Western Pennsylvania. Go to http://www.pittsburghlive.com/photos/2002-02-26/PH_2002-02-26_iattorney-b.jpg to view her picture.

Background: I attended undergraduate school with Ms. Buchanan. At the Pennsylvania University I succesfully re-established (and served as president) the pre-law society and graduated in 1983. Here Ms. Buchanan would become interested in the law. She graduated after me in 1984.

In addition, I was listed in Who's Who Among American Colleges and Universities, and given the 1983 Progressive Leadership Award, and 1983 Distinguished Honor Award.

Before joining the U.S. Attorney's Office in 1988 Ms. Buchanan secured a clerkship with U.S. District Judge Maurice B. Cohill, Jr.

Judge Cohill is the Western District Judge responsible for enforcing a consent decree governing United States of America v. Port Authority of Allegheny County, Docket No. 91-CV-1694. However, he turned a blind eye to my case Docket No. 95-CV-00339. I had organized (secure a union) a political sub-division.

During that same year members of the state judiciary were charged and convicted for violating my civil rights (fixing cases against me in retaliation of Docket No. 95-CV-00339).

In a case related to Docket No. 95-CV-00339, an alleged EEOC investigative file was prematurely purged and the U.S. Department of Labor refused delivery of its copy despite a subpoena, FOIA Request and Motion to Compel. See Docket No. 98-CV-230. That is, the Department of Labor closed its investigation based on the alleged EEOC decision. But, I had proffered to the court EEOC writings that demonstrated no investigation was conducted.

Discussion: At issue is the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. The Bush administration is attempting to change the 50 percent rule. That is, financial aid is available for postsecondary education provided at a college or university that has at least 50 percent of its students campus-based.

Corporations have paid Senators and Congress men and women well, attempting to change the 50 percent rule. The rule is necessary to prevent fraud (absentee students and/or diploma mills).

It appears at least three corporations have abused the administration's Distance Education Demonstration that wavied the 50 percent rule.

The Career Education Corporation of Hoffman Estates, Ill., has faced lawsuits, from shareholders and students, contending that, among other things, its colleges have inflated enrollment numbers. In addition, F.B.I. agents raided 10 campuses run by ITT Educational Services of Carmel, Ind., looking for similar problems.

Nonetheless, the S.E.C. and FBI investigation is just spin to make it appear the administration is doing its job.

The Pittsburgh case involves Kaplan, Inc., which is wholly own by the Washington Post Company. For-profit postsecondary education has turned the company around. Individuals far more powerful than Martha Steward have made millions.

Thus the current unexplained campaign against free speech appears to be little more than another Madison Avenue scheme to control any discussion.

 
At 7:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thus is the beginning of the end of the freedom of speech in the USA

The use of the media, that which was meant to distribute information, but is now used to suppress it with disinformation, is only the first step to Orwell's dark vision

Heaven help Americans, because they seem singularly unable to help themselves

Good luck, Ward. Your fate is sealed, we simply await your sentence

 
At 5:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We support you out here in California.
This entire attack is so hypocritically typical and truly sickening! And who's leading the attack? Mr. phone sex himself, Bill (The Liar) O'Reilly? Isn't he supposed to be busy writing a children's book on phone sex?
Two radio DJ's in Denver? How much protesting did they do when the KKK was given a permit to march in downtown Denver on Martin Luther King's birthday?

Keep on keepin' on Mr. Churchill! Support for you is growing daily. Just don't expect to read about it or see it anywhere in the fascist corporate media.
The word is getting out there more and more every day so hang in there brother.
We're behind you 100%!

 
At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't bow, brother
you're RIGHT!!!!!!
We support you from Belgium...

(how about the "belgium Invasion Act"??)

 

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