Tag Archives: Civil War

Historical Ignorance and Patriot Mythology concerning the “Fraud” of the American Independence from Great Britain

I had the opportunity to speak with Lowell A. (“Larry”) Becraft again tonight about the mythology of law circulating around the Patriot Movement.  

http://home.hiwaay.net/~becraft/deadissues.htm

http://libertyworksradionetwork.com/jml/index.php

So much nonsense, so little time, but I did think of a little outline concerning one of the biggest issues:  Are the United States really free of Great Britain?  (I can’t quite believe we’re discussing this during the Presidency of Barack Hussein Obama, whose father was an anti-British Mau Mau).

I hope that we can focus just one the English-influence and Crown Control question for this first topic, because I think that’s the “oldest” and in some ways most basic confusion, because some elements of the conflict clearly bothered and divided even the Founding Fathers, who led a revolution against the “Mother Country” of England:
(1)   During the Revolution: Loyalist Tories vs. Revolutionary Patriots.
(2)   After the Revolution: Anglophile Federalists vs. Francophile Anti-Federalists in and after the Constitutional Convention of 1787; essence of the conflict focusing on the question of government financing and the establishment of a National Bank; and the question of repayment of English creditors and protection of English property interests in the newly freed colonies.
(3)    The party lines were split between Hamilton & Washington v.  Henry, Jefferson, & Madison (with John Adams kind of in the middle).
(4)   Anglophile Federalist Hamiltonians favored centralization and the Bank of the United States IN LARGE PART FOR THE BENEFIT OF ENGLISH CREDITORS OF THE COLONIES—the origin of the “no impairment of the obligations of debt” clause in Article I.
(5)      Francophile Democratic Republicans favored State Sovereignty and a decentralized economy.
(6)   “Second American Revolution” Ended with U.S. Victory at the Battle of New Orleans 200 years ago—no reintegration with the British Empire—why would this war (more popularly known as the War of 1812 have happened AT ALL if the First Revolution had resulted in some sort of secret compromise with Parliament or the Crown?
(7)   Bankers’ attempt on Andrew Jackson’s life: 1835 correlated with the Jackson’s confiscation of the Bank of the United States, effected by Attorney General turned Secretary of the Treasury Roger Brooke Taney (who was rewarded by appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court upon the death of John Marshall after his unparalleled thirty five years).
(8)   1844: James K. Polk sails into office on the motto “54’40 or Fight” regarding the proposed annexation of “all” of Oregon from Great Britain—compromise ended up with extension of 59th parallel—giving North America the beautiful gift of what is now called “British Columbia” and was, until the invasion from Hong Kong, the most English spot on earth outside of England.
(9)   1848: Communist Manifesto casts a pall over the whole world—crystalizing another whole aspect of the “English” Myth: the domination of English, in particular English Jewish Bankers. Communism was, in all the world, especially threatening to the European Crowned Heads and the Southern American Planters (*seen by Marx as relics of Christian Feudalism).
(10)   Rapidly, the English crown works out a compromise with the Bankers (Karl Marx was a member of the Rothschild Family on his mother’s side) and England rapidly grants full civil rights to Jews and begins to expand the Voting Franchise to workers, although this did not happen until 1867, after the American Civil War was over. England had its first Jewish MP within ten years (Lionel Rothschild 1859, partly parodied by Alec Guiness in the movie “Kind Hearts and Coronets”) and London has its first Jewish Mayor in 1855 (David Salamons, also the first Jewish Sheriff of any English shire–namely Kent SE of London).
(10)   So in 1861, America plunged into a civil war that radically changed the landscape.  England supported the South, by more than just words, but Uncle Abe threatened war on England, and for whatever reasons (such as the sympathy of the as yet unenfranchised workers, England was scared.  Queen Victoria was totally in private sympathy with the South but her beloved husband Albert of Saxe-Coburg Gotha was on the side of the North (and the workers).  Does this Sound like a situation where England controlled the U.S. in 1860?  At all?
(11)  After the War England actually PAID A LARGE INDEMNITY TO THE US for its support of the South and for outfitting Southern Ships as blockade runners and for the CSA Navy.  Was the US dependent on England in 1865?  Doesn’t look like it to me…
(12)  For the Fifty Years after 1865-1915, American Aristocrats defined themselves largely by their trips to England, education in English Colleges and Universities, or U.S. (e.g. Harvard & Yale) imitation of English College and University styles—this was a matter of U.S. Money going to England for Validation, to be sure, and also of U.K. investment coming to the United States, but the relationship was one of Equals, not of Colonial Office and Master.
(13) 1915  the Lusitania sank–some people say it was a fix, a false flag attack.  BUT, even after the Lusitania, and a lot of other moves, it took a LOT OF PROPAGANDA, and the Zimmerman telegram, to get the United States to join England and France in the War on Germany and Austria-Hungary.  Some say it took the Balfour Declaration and the support of U.S. Jews….who were mostly of German and Eastern European Origin….
(14)   But the simple truth is that IF the mythology were correct, if England or the British Crown still exercised ANY sort of lasting control over the former 13 colonies—by 1912 multiplied into 48 states with several associated colonies of their own—IF that mythology of continued British Domination were correct, the South would have won the War of 1861-65, and if there had been a World War I at all, the United States would have joined with the U.K., as did all the real dominions including Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, and the only recently formed Union of South Africa, in 1914.
(15)   It is interesting to reflect that, in 1912, American Colonies abroad included the Philippine Islands in East Asia and Hawaii in the Middle Pacific, both of which the U.S. held in competition with Great Britain for colonial power in the Pacific.
(16)   Hawaii, all its history considered, should have belonged to England if to anyone.  Hawaii had included, as part of its own flag, the British Flag or Union Jack, evidence of the close alliance between the Hawaiian monarchy and the British Navy….which ever since Captain Cook had been the instrument for the world integration and continued independence of what they called “the Sandwich Islands”…. put the Hawaiian flag side-by-side with the Flag of British Columbia…. or read how the Hawaiian kings and queens copied English royal and legal culture slavishly, in every way possible, and you will see just how different America’s path really was.
(17)   It is true that the American colonies due owe their legal heritage, language, and many aspects of their philosophy, to England, and it is also true that the Queen of England, as a wealthy private individual, has a substantial “empire” of investments all over the U.S., but so do the Imperial family of Japan, and the Royal House of Saud (from Saudi Arabia).
(18)    The Queen of England is one of the wealthiest individuals with some of the largest landholdings in the world, but the House of Windor’s private holdings and investments ALL date from the 19th century, NOT from pre-Revolutionary or colonial times.
(19)    So as interesting as it may be to speculate that the United States never really obtained its independence from England, it did.
(20)    One final point would be to remember the debate in Congress in 1939-1941 (before Pearl Harbor) about whether the United States should assist the United Kingdom AT ALL, in its defense.
(21)    My Galveston-Texas born grandfather Alphonse B. Meyer got a lucrative contract to clean, paint, and seal the U.S. ships that were being “lent and leased” to England pursuant to a special agreement which a Texas school-teacher turned Congressman, one Lyndon B. Johnson, representing the Texas Hill Country, pushed through Congress on behalf of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
(22)    “Lend-Lease” was basically U.S. charity to England, and so, by World War II, it would be fair to say that the Mother Country was now dependent on the Former Colonies for her very survival.
(23)     There is really very little doubt that, once she committed to War against Germany, whether that was a smart decision or not, Great Britain could not have survived as an independent nation without the full backing of the United States—which King George VI and Prime Minister Winston S. Churchill simply would not have had to beg for, had the English Crown retained “ownership and control” after the American War of Independence and Constitution of 1787, after the War of 1812, or the Civil War…..
(24)    History is VERY interesting, and more people could surely benefit from spending time studying it……
(25)       Anybody who EVER wants to discuss this further, leave your comment, e-mail, and telephone number here….I might even start giving seminars….

On April 10, the 208th Anniversary of the Birth of His Grace, CSA General Leonidas Polk, the First Episcopal Bishop of Louisiana

In thirty days, that is, on April 10, it will be the 208th Anniversary of the Birth of His Grace, General Leonidas Polk, the First Episcopal Bishop of Louisiana.  

OK, the Anglicans were clearly latecomers in Louisiana.  The RCs got here a long time before….although their Bishopric only preceded ours by a scant 48 years.  The RC ARCHDIOCESE OF NEW ORLEANS (NOVÆ AURELIÆ) was only erected on 25 April, 1793, as the Diocese of Saint Louis of New Orleans; raised to its present rank and title of Archdiocese on 19 July, 1850.  Amazingly enough to contemplate, the RC Bishop of New Orleans’ original territory comprised the entire original Louisiana purchase plus both East and West Florida, being bounded on the north by Canadian, on the west by the Rocky Mountains and the Rio Perdito, on the east by the English-speaking RC Diocese of Baltimore, and on the south by the Diocese of Linares and the Archdiocese of Durango.  The present boundaries of the RC Archdiocese include the State of Louisiana, between the twenty-ninth and thirty-first degree of north latitude, an area of 23,208 square miles (constantly shrinking due to bad hydraulic and wetland management, but that is a different story).

So it is no surprise that the political and ecclesiastical history of Louisiana are inextricably intertwined.  But Bishop Polk was, as they say, something completely different from any other prelate of local or even national memory.  He was a fighter.  I think it is important to remember and celebrate his 208th birthday this year because we have the opportunity to combine this celebration with the sesquicentennial memorial of his death and martyrdom on June 14, 2014, the hundred and fiftieth anniversary of his death from enemy cannon fire atop Pine Mountain in Cobb County, Georgia.  Cobb County’s county seat is Marietta, and it is the last county guarding the northern suburbs of Atlanta (Marietta is now, pretty much a northern suburb of Atlanta, but in the historical metaphor for Scarlett O’Hara’s mythic reality, it was separate.

And it was there, in the 32nd year of Cobb County’s creation out of the Cherokee nation, that General Leonidas Polk died defending the “Old South” (was it really old when it had only existed for 31 solid years—by it’s 32nd Birthday on 2 December 1864—Cobb County was occupied by Sherman’s troops and thus under the heals of the most brutal enemy any Americans had ever known.  Yes indeed, to Southern Partisans and Confederate Patriots, General Leonidas Polk died a hero to right and Constitutional Government, every bit as much as, perhaps more even, than King Charles the Martyr in January 1648/9.  Oliver Cromwell was probably a lot like Sherman, in his self-righteousness, but he lacked the technology and strength of force to be as savage and brutal.  And oddly enough, I doubt Cromwell would have used his power as brutally against his own people (Roundheads or Cavaliers) even if he had had it.  I could be wrong.

There is a Society of King Charles the Martyr (SKCM) to which my devoutly Anglo-Catholic Father belonged.  I have considered joining it.  And there SHOULD be a Society dedicated to the memory of His Grace, General Leonidas Polk of Louisiana.  If I could find any “fellow travelers” I would certainly organize such a society, and you’d think I’d have an easy time of it.

When in New Orleans, on most Sundays (and on this immediate past Ash Wednesday) I attend services at Christ Church Cathedral on St. Charles & Sixth Street, the seat of the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana.   His Grace, General Polk, has a magnificent tombstone inside the Cathedral, just to the right of the altar (when facing the Cross) and behind the elaborately carved, elevated wooden pulpit. On other Sundays, more rare in the past but perhaps soon to be more commonly, I attend Holy Eucharist at Trinity Church on Jackson Street, built under the direction of Bishop Polk in the 1850s, with an auditorium called “Bishop Polk Hall.”

And yet everyone in the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana is totally embarrassed by General Leonidas Polk.  “He was a villain” said Christ Church Cathedral Dean David A. duPlantier on Sunday, 20 October of last year (2013), just before delivering a sermon on the Parable of the Unjust Judge (Luke 18: 1-8), which just happens to be one of my favorite texts in the Bible.  And yes, I thought the irony was delicious: that Dean DuPlantier so harshly and unjustly judged the founder of the Church where he preaches….  I have become much colder in my feelings towards Christ Church Cathedral ever since.  How can they dishonor their founder?  How can a people so viciously toss away and condemn their own heritage?  My grandmother was baptized in a Church (Holy Trinity) built by Bishop Polk in Nachitoches, Louisiana even before Trinity on Jackson here in New Orleans.  Holy Trinity in Nachitoches is, I think, the oldest standing Episcopal Church west of the Mississippi.  It may well be the oldest Protestant Church West of the Mississippi.  Trinity on Jackson is, to be sure, East of the Mississippi although only by a few blocks.

I grieve for the disregarded and disrespected heritage of my Southern Ancestors who fought for freedom.  I certainly do not grieve for the passing of slavery, but I think the price was much too high: in no other nation on earth did it require a bloody “civil war” to abolish slavery.   Nor was the War of 1861-65 really either a Civil War nor a War to End Slavery—it was the first experiment in self-righteous Yankee Imperialism by a powerful centralized government designed for world conquest for the benefit of the few, not the many, and above all for the occult purpose of instituting a form of government which can only by called, somewhat ironically, “Corporate Communism”—an oligarchy of institutions sponsored by the government and sponsoring the government, who protest and proclaim that their purpose is to redistribute wealth and grant equality to all people.  

To all people except those who remember and respect history, of course.

 

“Der Anarch”—Asserting our Sovereign Individuality and Sovereign Citizenship as not only “Anarchen” but also “Ubermenschen” is the only path to resist Totalitarianism in the United States and around the World

You see a lot of insults being heaped these days at the core Constitutional concept of “the sovereign citizen” as a political or philosophical movement these days, as if it were conjured up by a bunch of illiterate hillbillies  who just want to hide their moonshine & pot-liquor from “the feds” and the “revenuers.”  Credible reports from all over the United States suggest that local police are everywhere being taught to watch out for the dangerous “sovereign citizens” who assert their constitutional rights “too often or too loudly” as subversive terrorists.  My perspective on such matters is: MAY THE LORD OUR GOD BLESS, KEEP, AND PROTECT ALL SUBVERSIVE TERRORISTS WHO FIGHT FOR THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS, JUST AS HE KEPT AND PROTECTED PATRICK HENRY, GEORGE WASHINGTON, THOMAS JEFFERSON, JAMES MADISON, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, and ANDREW JACKSON BEFORE….

And ever since Liza Mundy published my identity as an “Anarchist” (she left out the “Traditional, Jeffersonian, Southern Constitutionalist” modifiers to that label) in the Washington Post on October 6, 2009, I have repeatedly been asked to explain myself—how can I be an “anarchist?”  Doesn’t that mean I just want “chaos?”  Well, up to a point, I will admit that “chaos” to me seems preferable to computer driven and enforced high-tech “order.”  I would rather live in Early Anglo-Saxon or Norse Viking Society or at the edge of the Western Frontier in 18th Century Virginia than in any of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, George Orwell’s 1984, or Jerry Brown’s Barbara Boxer’s & Dianne Feinstein’s California 2013.

But it happens that living in a “leaderless” society and accepting no man as an arbiter of YOUR OWN DEFINITION of “good and evil” (or going beyond such things) has a very respectable historical pedigree….  Today I just want to celebrate Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche and Ernst Jünger— http://www.ernst-juenger.org.  

Ernst Jünger was an anti-Nazi German Conservative and Intellectual of the highest calibre and standing.  He lived until the age of 102, from 1895-1998, beating even my grandmother Helen for longevity (she only made it to 101).  

My political philosophy is fundamentally anti-modern and therefore truly “conservative” whereas Naziism, like George H.W. Bush’s & George W. Bush’s Socialist-Corporatism (which includes Obama and the Clintons, by the way), is fundamentally modernist—embracing technology as a means of oppression and control by monitoring.  

No  “Traditional, Jeffersonian, Southern Constitutionalist” could possibly tolerate the Department of Homeland Security, the National Defense Authorization Act, or any of the now thousands of related executive orders.  GHW Bush, GW Bush, WJ Clinton, HR Clinton, and BH Obama are all fundamentally students and followers of Stalin, Mao, and perhaps even Hitler. (1) 

I am much more a student and follower of Ernst Jünger.

Jünger was among the forerunners of magical realism—a very broad topic into which I think you could integrate everything from Joss Whedon’s Buffy-the-Vampire Slayer TV Series to Terrance Malick’s films (include “To the Wonder” and “Tree of Life”).  A friend of mine from the Ukraine recently commented that Jünger’s view of life and the current historical trajectory involves the “re-mythologization of the world,” the protection, preservation, and restoration of individual imagination, instinct, intuition as major factors in world politics and society.  

My supplement to this is that all historical interpretations and political philosophies are essentially mythologies informed by more-or-less gross reorderings of the events of individual, local, regional, national, continental, and global existence.  The mythology of American Constitutional Law depends entirely (these days) on the so-called “Civil War” of 1861-1865, except to the degree that it is supplemented by the post-1945 One World Religion of the Taboo Holocaust and the Credal virtues of the United Nations.

Jünger’s vision in The Glass Bees (1957, German title: Gläserne Bienen), of a future in which an overmechanized world threatens individualism, could be seen as a direct critique of Artificial (robotic) Intelligence and even this “Aryan Traditionalism” you’re looking at (which reminds me so much of “The Santa Fe Plateau and New Age Alchemy” of Yosi Taitz, Daylight Chemical, and similar companies….)

Jünger was an entomologist as well as a soldier and writer, a “manly man” but sensitive poet with training in botany and zoology, as well as a soldier, his works in general are infused with tremendous details of the natural world.

One of Jünger’s most important literary contributions was the metahistoric figure of Der Anarch (“the sovereign person”), which evolved from his earlier conception of the Waldgänger, or “Forest Goer”.  Der anarch is Jünger’s answer to the question of survival of individual freedom in a totalitarian world, and it is ten thousand times more relevant today than it was 57 years ago as he was writing.  It is developed primarily through the character of Martin Venator in his novel Eumeswil.   Der Anarch IS not only the original “Sovereign Citizen”, at least the original “post Hitlerian” sovereign citizen, he is also a Nietzschean Ubermensch, with the capacity to retake his sovereignty from tyrants and maintain it, like the Superman, even in the forest, even in the Mountains, even in the Desert.

I totally believe in the sovereignty of each person and I hate the notion that the sovereign citizen has become the object of such ridicule in our society—a terrorist profile in the target of DHS.  What is clear is that we need to reassert our freedom in more articulate and fluent ways.  Fluency is required and intellectual heritage must be asserted because of the intellectual snobbery bred into us and our by the 20th century.  This snobbery led to such atrocious and fraudulent (incomprehensible) disasters as George W. Bush having degrees from both Harvard and Yale (it’s amazing what money can buy) and Obama attending Columbia, Harvard, and (worst of all) actually teaching at the University of Chicago—teaching constitutional law, no less, at MY alma mater as a successor to Michael W. McConnell—a concept which simply shocks and derails me.

Academic snobbery, which L. Frank Baum once ridiculed as a “Wogglebug Education” even after the Wizard’s dispensation of Brains to the Scarecrow was not a factor in the foundation of America, by men whose minds and mental capacities are simply beyond equal anywhere. No, lack of degrees and academic affiliation quite simply didn’t bother the extremely well-educated under-institutionalized Founding Fathers of the USA such as Patrick Henry and Benjamin Franklin one little bit….and didn’t actually have much of an impact on intellectual or philosophical careers in the 19th century either—consider that Richard Wagner never went to a music conservatory, Charles Darwin dropped out of Medical School and only grudgingly completed a degree in divinity at Cambridge, which he, oddly enough, never really used….and the lack of formal education completed by such legendary U.S. Presidents as Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln is a part of every schoolboy’s and schoolgirl’s learning—or at least it used to be before modern education norms set in.

In this same spirit, Ernst Jünger rejected all the titles and honors offered him by Hitler’s Third-Reich, and when assigned as a cultural attachee during the occupation of Paris, chose to hang out with subversive and degenerate artists…  This is the true legacy of a genuine Anarchist, and the world would do well to remember how important the “leaderless” spirit can be when “Obama’s going to change things….Obama’s going to make it happen” as some of the children’s school songs now go….

(a)  Unlike so many modern critics of 20th-21st century totalitarianism, I cannot automatically group Hitler, Mussolini, and Franco in the same list as Stalin and his Soviet successors, or Roosevelt and his Keynsian modern American Successors. I think Hitler was in fact much more of an ordinary person than any of these others, but at the same time he had higher and more “humane” [i.e. romantic, not necessarily rational or sensible] ideals than either of the Bushes, the Clintons or Obamas, however grotesquely inept he may have been in achieving, implementing, or realizing those ideals.

Nine Historical Vignettes for February 3, 2011: (1) Kosciusko’s Bridges 1781, (2) Hampton Roads Conference 1865, (3) Declaration of War against Germany 1917, (4) Death of Woodrow Wilson 1924, (5) Arrest of Karl Fuchs 1950, (6) Publication by Jacques Cousteau 1953, (7) Death of Buddy Holly 1959, (8) Landing of LUNIK 9 on the Moon 1966, (9) Alberto Gonzalez Confirmed as Attorney General 2005

What follows are nine moments in the history of the United States or Western Europe which relate to and lead up to the formation of the world as we know it.  All of these events happened on February 3, of one year or another.  THEY SAY THAT AMERICANS, FOR THE MOST PART, ARE the most HISTORICALLY ILLITERATE people in the world.  WHILE TEACHING AT AUSTIN COMMUNITY COLLEGE IN 2001-2003, ONE OF MY STUDENTS ASKED ME HOW I EVER CAME TO KNOW SO MUCH HISTORY—HOW LONG HAD IT TAKEN ME—I ANSWERED HIM I HAD BEEN STUDYING HISTORY MY WHOLE LIFE, AND THAT DISCOURAGED HIM, AND HE SAID, “SO NONE OF THE REST OF US REALLY HAVE A CHANCE”.  I RESPONDED THAT, NO, HISTORY WAS SOMETHING ONE COULD LEARN IN THE QUIET MOMENTS OF RELAXATION BETWEEN WORK, SLEEP, EATING, AND PLAY.  THAT HISTORY WAS LIKE CROSS-WORD PUZZLES OR VIDEO-GAMES—EASY AND RELAXING TO TAKE NOTES AND STUDY LINES OF HISTORY VERY CASUALLY—THIS I SINCERELY BELIEVE, AND TO THAT END, I HAVE COLLECTED 9 HISTORICAL VIGNETTES FOR FEBRUARY 3, 2011.
Today in History — Tuesday, Feb. 3 (52 Years Ago/The Day the Music Died, 87 years ago, the day Woodrow Wilson Died, 6 years ago, the day the decency of the Office of U.S. Attorney General Died)

Historical Vignette # (1)    On the evening of February 3, 1781, during the final year of the American War of Independence (“Revolutionary War” implies social change, and since the War of 1775-1781—peace resolved by the Treaty of Paris in 1783—with the United States Congress meeting in the dull & dreary Maryland Capital of Annapolis), American General Nathanael Greene and his troops successfully cross the Yadkin River to evade General Charles Cornwallis. The crossing followed consecutive Patriot losses at the Catawba River and at Tarrant’s Tavern, as well as heavy rainfall on February 1, which Greene feared would soon make the river impassable.

Although contradictory evidence exists, it is likely that the efforts of Polish engineer and military advisor Thaddeus Kosciusko made the crossing possible. Kosciusko had made a canoe expedition up the Catawba and Pedee Rivers, assessing Greene’s options, in December 1780. He then built a fleet of flat-bottomed boats for General Greene to use as a means of transporting his men across the water without having to waste time on manual portage, which would have involved soldiers removing the boats from the water and carrying them on their shoulders over land. The boats could be loaded into the Southern Army’s wagons for transport between river crossings. Kosciusko’s study of the rivers also allowed Greene to accurately predict the two-day interval between a heavy rainfall and rising river water.

Greene had ordered the Kosciusko-designed boats to be waiting for his men at the Yadkin. Thus, despite the flood of refugees clogging North Carolina’s roads in a desperate rush to leave before notoriously cruel British Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton arrived, Greene was able to move his troops to the river and cross it. Although Cornwallis caught the tail-end of the Patriot crossing and shelled Greene’s camp on the far side of the river on February 4, he was not able to cause major damage or disruption.

Greene’s timing was impeccable–Cornwallis was unable to ford the quickly rising Yadkin behind him. Instead, Cornwallis was forced to march his men to the aptly named Shallow Ford and did not finish crossing the Yadkin until the morning of the February 7, by which time Greene and the Southern Army had a two-day lead in the race towards the Dan River and safety in Patriot-held Virginia.

Historical Vignette #(2) During the Final Year of the War Between the States (“Civil War” being as much a misnomer as “Revolutionary War”—the English Civil War of 1644-1649 was a truly “Civil War” between classes and religious groups within the same society, but it is only by a long post-war process that the full class, constitutional, economic, and socio-political implications of the American War of 1861-65  were resolved) President Lincoln met on February 3, 1865 at Hampton Roads with a delegation of Confederate officials to discuss a possible peace agreement. Lincoln refuses to grant the delegation any concessions, and the president departs for the north.

New York Tribune editor and abolitionist Horace Greeley provided the impetus for the conference when he contacted Francis Blair, a Maryland aristocrat and presidential adviser. Greeley suggested that Blair was the “right man” to open discussions with the Confederates to end the war. Blair sought permission from Lincoln to meet with Confederate President Jefferson Davis, and he did so twice in January 1865. Blair suggested to Davis that an armistice be forged and the two sides turn their attention to removing the French-supported regime of Maximilian in Mexico. This plan would help cool tensions between North and South by providing a common enemy, he believed.

Meanwhile, the situation was becoming progressively worse for the Confederates in the winter of 1864 and 1865. In January, Union troops captured Fort Fisher and effectively closed Wilmington, North Carolina, the last major port open to blockade runners. Davis conferred with his vice president, Alexander Stephens, and Stephens recommended that a peace commission be appointed to explore a possible armistice. Davis sent Stephens and two others to meet with Lincoln at Hampton Roads, Virginia.

The meeting convened on February 3. Stephens asked if there was any way to stop the war and Lincoln replied that the only way was “for those who were resisting the laws of the Union to cease that resistance.” The delegation underestimated Lincoln’s resolve to make the end of slavery a necessary condition for any peace. The president also insisted on immediate reunification and the laying down of Confederate arms before anything else was discussed. In short, the Union was in such an advantageous position that Lincoln did not need to concede any issues to the Confederates. Robert M.T. Hunter, one of the delegation, commented that Lincoln was offering little except the unconditional surrender of the South.

After less than five hours, the conference ended and the delegation left with no concessions. The war continued for more than two months.

Historical Vignette #(3) On the 3rd day of February, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson speaks for two hours before a historic session of Congress to announce that the United States is breaking diplomatic relations with Germany.

Due to the reintroduction of the German navy’s policy of unlimited submarine warfare, announced two days earlier by Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann Hollwegg, Wilson announced that his government had no choice but to cut all diplomatic ties with Germany in order to uphold the honor and dignity of the United States. Though he maintained that We do not desire any hostile conflict with the German government, Wilson nevertheless cautioned that war would follow if Germany followed through on its threat to sink American ships without warning.

Later that day, Count von Bernstorff, the German ambassador to the U.S., received a note written by Secretary of State Robert Lansing stating that The President has directed me to announce to your Excellency that all diplomatic relations between the United States and the German empire are severed, and that the American Ambassador at Berlin will be immediately withdrawn, and in accordance with such announcement to deliver to your Excellency your passports. Bernstorff was guaranteed safe passage out of the country, but was ordered to leave Washington immediately. Also in the wake of Wilson’s speech, all German cruisers docked in the United States were seized and the government formally demanded that all American prisoners being held in Germany be released at once.

On the same day, a German U-boat sunk the American cargo ship Housatonic off the Scilly Islands, just southwest of Britain. A British ship rescued the ship’s crew, but its entire cargo of grain was lost.

In Berlin that night, before learning of the president’s speech, German Foreign Secretary Arthur Zimmermann told U.S. Ambassador James J. Gerard that Everything will be alright. America will do nothing, for President Wilson is for peace and nothing else. Everything will go on as before. He was proved wrong the following morning, as news arrived of the break in relations between America and Germany, a decisive step towards U.S. entry into the First World War.

Historical Vignette #(4) *CLOSELY RELATED TO #(3):  On February 3, 1924, Woodrow Wilson, the 28th president of the United States, died.  Woodrow Wilson was the first Southerner elected President of the United States since 1856, and the first Southerner to hold the title of President within the territory of what is now the United States since Jefferson Davis, and the only Ph.D. and Academic ever to be elected President (he was previously President of Princeton University in New Jersey).  Wilson died in Washington, D.C., at the age of 67, 7 years after the declaration of War on Germany that effectively ended American Isolation in the New World and launched the country, unwillingly and unnecessarily, as a world power forever.

Wilson was also the President who presided over the “ratification” of the 16th Amendment and implementation of Income Tax, the establishment of the Federal Reserve Banking System, and the 17th Amendment to the United States which effectively abolished the power of the States in Federal Government forever.  OK, his administration also saw the extension of the voting Franchise to Women and many other “progressive” acts, but on the whole, Wilson effectively crystalized the implementation of the foundations of Corporate-Socialist government in the United States of America.  It was all very tragic.

But in 1912, Governor Wilson of New Jersey was elected president in a landslide Democratic victory over Republican incumbent William Howard Taft and Progressive Party (“Bull-Moose”) candidate (and formerly Wildly-Popular President) Theodore Roosevelt. The focal point of President Wilson’s first term in office was the outbreak of World War I and his efforts to find a peaceful end to the conflict while maintaining U.S. neutrality. In 1916, he was narrowly reelected president at the end of a close race against Charles Evans Hughes, his Republican challenger.

In 1917, the renewal of German submarine warfare against neutral American ships, and the “Zimmerman Note,” which revealed a secret alliance proposal by Germany to Mexico, forced Wilson to push for America’s entry into the war.

At the war’s end, President Wilson traveled to France, where he headed the American delegation to the peace conference seeking an official end to the conflict. At Versailles, Wilson was the only Allied leader who foresaw the future difficulty that might arise from forcing punitive peace terms on an economically ruined Germany. He also successfully advocated the creation of the League of Nations as a means of maintaining peace in the postwar world. In November 1920, President Wilson was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts at Versailles.

In the autumn of 1919, while campaigning in the United States to win approval for the Treaty of Versailles and League of Nations, Wilson suffered a severe stroke that paralyzed his left side and caused significant brain damage. This illness likely contributed to Wilson’s uncharacteristic failure to reach a compromise with the American opponents to the European agreements, and in November the U.S. Senate refused to ratify the Treaty of Versailles or the League of Nations.

During his last year in office, there is evidence that Wilson’s second wife, Edith Bolling Galt Wilson, may have served as acting president for the debilitated and bed-ridden president who often communicated through her. In March 1921, Wilson’s term expired, and he retired with his wife to Washington, D.C., where he lived until his death on February 3, 1924. Two days later, he was buried in Washington’s National Cathedral, the first president to be laid to rest in the nation’s capital.

Historical Vignette #(5) On February 3, 1950, Klaus Fuchs, a German-born British scientist who helped developed the atomic bomb, was arrested in Great Britain for passing top-secret information about the bomb to the Soviet Union. The arrest of Fuchs led authorities to several other individuals involved in a spy ring, culminating with the arrest of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg and their subsequent execution.

Fuchs and his family fled Germany in 1933 to avoid Nazi persecution and came to Great Britain, where Fuchs earned his doctorate in physics. During World War II, British authorities were aware of the leftist leanings of both Fuchs and his father. However, Fuchs was eventually invited to participate in the British program to develop an atomic bomb (the project named “Tube Alloys”) because of his expertise. At some point after the project began, Soviet agents contacted Fuchs and he began to pass information about British progress to them. Late in 1943, Fuchs was among a group of British scientists brought to America to work on the Manhattan Project, the U.S. program to develop an atomic bomb. Fuchs continued his clandestine meetings with Soviet agents. When the war ended, Fuchs returned to Great Britain and continued his work on the British atomic bomb project.

Fuchs’ arrest in 1950 came after a routine security check of Fuchs’ father, who had moved to communist East Germany in 1949. While the check was underway, British authorities received information from the American Federal Bureau of Investigation that decoded Soviet messages in their possession indicated Fuchs was a Russian spy. On February 3, officers from Scotland Yard arrested Fuchs and charged him with violating the Official Secrets Act. Fuchs eventually admitted his role and was sentenced to 14 years in prison. His sentence was later reduced, and he was released in 1959 and spent his remaining years living with his father in East Germany.

Fuchs’ capture set off a chain of arrests. Harry Gold, whom Fuchs implicated as the middleman between himself and Soviet agents, was arrested in the United States. Gold thereupon informed on David Greenglass, one of Fuchs’ co-workers on the Manhattan Project. After his apprehension, Greenglass implicated his sister-in-law and her husband, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg. They were arrested in New York in July 1950, found guilty of conspiracy to commit espionage, and executed at Sing Sing Prison in June 1953.

And Now for Something Completely Different #1, Cross-tabbed as Historical Vignette #(6)   On February 3, 1953, French oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau publishes his most famous and lasting work, The Silent World.

Born in Saint-Andre-de-Cubzac, France, in 1910, Cousteau was trained at the Brest Naval School. While serving in the French navy, he began his underwater explorations, filming shipwrecks and the underwater world of the Mediterranean Sea through a glass bowl. At the time, the only available system for underwater breathing involved a diver being tethered to the surface, and Cousteau sought to develop a self-contained device.

In 1943, with the aid of engineer Emile Gagnan, he designed the Aqua-Lung, the world’s first self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (scuba). With the Aqua-Lung, the largely unexplored world lying beneath the ocean surface was open to Cousteau as never before. He developed underwater cameras and photography and was employed by the French navy to explore navy shipwrecks. In his free time, he explored ancient wrecks and studied underwater sea life.

In 1948, he published his first work, Through 18 Meters of Water, and in 1950 Lord Guinness, a British patron, bought him an old British minesweeper to use for his explorations. Cousteau converted the ship into an oceanographic vessel and christened it the Calypso. In 1953, he published The Silent World, written with Frederic Dumas, and began work on a film version of the book with film director Louis Malle. Three years later,The Silent World was released to world acclaim. The film, which revealed to the public the hidden universe of tropical fish, whales, and walruses, won Best Documentary at the Academy Awards and the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

With the success of the film, Cousteau retired from the navy to devote himself to oceanography. He welcomed geologists, archaeologists, zoologists, environmentalists, and other scientists aboard the Calypso and led numerous excursions to the world’s great bodies of water, from the Red Sea to the Amazon River. He headed the Conshelf Saturation Dive Program, in which men lived and worked for extended time periods at considerable depths along the continental shelves.

His many books include The Living Sea (1963), Three Adventures: Galapagos, Titicaca, the Blue Holes (1973), and Jacques Cousteau: The Ocean World (1985). He also produced several more award-winning films and scores of television documentaries about the ocean, making him a household name. He saw firsthand the damage done to the marine ecosystems by humans and was an outspoken and persuasive environmentalist. Cousteau died in 1997.

HISTORICAL SUB-VIGNETTE: As a personal note, when I was a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Kenneth L. Ryskamp in West Palm Beach, Florida in 1992 (Ryskamp was, without doubt, one of the most completely decent, distinguished and honorable men I have ever known, as well as one of the most dedicated and hardworking Judges), I had the occasion to participate in and prepare jury instructions and other papers relating to the trial for drug trafficking of a Cousteau apprentice and protege, Michael Wludarszcik, an East German who had earned fame in 1971 or thereabouts by jumping the Berlin Wall and running through a hale of bullets to “Freedom” in the West. In 1989-1990, I had had occasion to participate in the dismantling of that wall, and so I felt a special kinship to Wludarszcik.  Michael Wludarszcik was a sailor, merchant marine, oceanography, and underwater archaeologist who worked closely with Cousteau on several expeditions.  He was also an expert welder, and was accused of having welded several tanks or containers full of marijuana and other contraband and bringing it across the Caribbean into the United States.  He was a handsome, young, good-looking rugged man and had a beautiful wife and infant child who sat, the wife often sobbing, the baby well-behaved and quiet, throughout the trial.  Wludarczsik was found guilty and sentenced under the then current sentencing guidelines to 20 years, although Judge Ryskamp commented on what a terrible loss was this man and his life to society and science, even as he pronounced sentence.  Wludarczsik’s case awakened in my mind a passionate hatred of the war on drugs, which was only repeatedly reinforced throughout the remainder of my clerkship.  I had been disgusted by some drug defendants, the corrupt cops and the slimy drug dealers and all the double-crossing informants, but Michael Wludarczsik was a man whom I would have been honored to know, and his “acts of piracy” involved providing substances which almost all of my friends and colleagues in academia and social circles generally used, enjoyed, and actually valued.  The hypocrisy of the American War on Drugs as a means of incarcerating hundreds of thousands of Americans continues to aggrieve and offend me.   I hope that in my lifetime I will see a time when freedom of choice and freedom to choose an individual lifestyle is restored to the American people, and where no person will ever be imprisoned for providing good value to a willing marketplace.  I deeply respected and will always treasure the time I spent with the Honorable Kenneth L. Ryskamp, but I wish he had fought harder, as did his Palm Beach Colleague the Honorable James C. Paine, to neutralize and counteract the War on Drugs, which began in this Country as a power grab after prohibition by oligarchs such as William Randolph Hearst and John D. Rockefeller, the war on drugs itself being a phrase coined or at least popularized by Nelson A. Rockefeller while Governor of New York  (later first unelected Vice-President under Gerald R. Ford).

And now for something completely different #2, Cross Tabbed as *Historical Vignette #(7): On February 3, 1959, rising American rock stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson are killed when their chartered Beechcraft Bonanza plane crashes in Iowa a few minutes after takeoff from Mason City on a flight headed for Moorehead, Minnesota. Investigators blamed the crash on bad weather and pilot error. Holly and his band, the Crickets, had just scored a No. 1 hit with “That’ll Be the Day.”

After mechanical difficulties with the tour bus, Holly had chartered a plane for his band to fly between stops on the Winter Dance Party Tour. However, Richardson, who had the flu, convinced Holly’s band member Waylon Jennings to give up his seat, and Ritchie Valens won a coin toss for another seat on the plane.

Holly, born Charles Holley in Lubbock, Texas, and just 22 when he died, began singing country music with high school friends before switching to rock and roll after opening for various performers, including Elvis Presley. By the mid-1950s, Holly and his band had a regular radio show and toured internationally, playing hits like “Peggy Sue,” “Oh, Boy!,” “Maybe Baby” and “Early in the Morning.” Holly wrote all his own songs, many of which were released after his death and influenced such artists as Bob Dylan and Paul McCartney.

Another crash victim, J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, 28, started out as a disk jockey in Texas and later began writing songs. Richardson’s most famous recording was the rockabilly “Chantilly Lace,” which made the Top 10. He developed a stage show based on his radio persona, “The Big Bopper.”

The third crash victim was Ritchie Valens, born Richard Valenzuela in a suburb of Los  Angeles, who was only 17 when the plane went down but had already scored hits with “Come On, Let’s Go,” “Donna” and “La Bamba,” an upbeat number based on a traditional Mexican wedding song (though Valens barely spoke Spanish). In 1987, Valens’ life was portrayed in the movie La Bamba, and the title song, performed by Los Lobos, became a No. 1 hit. Valens was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.

Singer Don McLean memorialized Holly, Valens and Richardson in the 1972 No. 1 hit “American Pie,” which refers to February 3, 1959 as “the day the music died.”

And now for something completely different #(3), Cross-Tabbed as Historical Vignette #8:  On February 3, 1966, the Soviet Union accomplishes the first controlled landing on the moon, when the unmanned spacecraft Lunik 9 touches down on the Ocean of Storms. After its soft landing, the circular capsule opened like a flower, deploying its antennas, and began transmitting photographs and television images back to Earth. The 220-pound landing capsule was launched from Earth on January 31.

Lunik 9 was the third major lunar first for the Soviet space program: On September 14, 1959, Lunik 2 became the first manmade object to reach the moon when it impacted with the lunar surface, and on October 7 of the same year Lunik 3 flew around the moon and transmitted back to Earth the first images of the dark side of the moon. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, the U.S. space program consistently trailed the Soviet program in space firsts–a pattern that shifted dramatically with the triumph of America’s Apollo lunar program in the late 1960s.

OK, so saving the worst of all for last of all (as Historical Vignette #9), on February 3, 2005, Alberto Gonzales won Senate confirmation as the nation’s first Hispanic attorney general despite protests over his record on torture.   Alberto Gonzalez would have been a disgrace to his profession and to the United States of America and its Constitution as a county prosecutor handling misdemeanors and traffic tickets and clearly had no business being the Attorney General of the United States.

The Senate approved his nomination on a largely party-line vote of 60-36, reflecting a split between Republicans and Democrats over whether the administration’s counterterrorism policies had led to the abuse of prisoners in Iraq and elsewhere. Shortly after the Senate vote, Vice President Dick Cheney swore in Gonzales as attorney general in a small ceremony in the Roosevelt Room at the White House. President Bush, who was traveling, called to congratulate him.

Gonzales was born in 1955 in San Antonio, Texas, the son of migrant workers and grew up in a small, crowded home in Houston without hot water or a telephone. He joined the U.S. Air Force in 1973 after graduating high school. Following a few years of service, Gonzales attended the U.S. Air Force Academy.

After leaving the military, Gonzales attended Rice University and Harvard Law School before Bush, then governor of Texas, picked him in 1995 to serve as his general counsel in Austin and in 2001 brought him to Washington as his White House counsel. In this new role, Gonzales championed an extension of the USA Patriot Act.

After Gonzales became attorney general, he faced scrutiny regarding some of his actions, most notably the firing of several U.S. attorneys and his defense of Bush’s domestic eavesdropping program. The firings became the subject of a Senate Judiciary Committee in 2007. Concerns about the veracity of some of his statements as well as his general competency also began to surface.

Democrats began calling for his resignation and for more investigations, but President Bush defended his appointee, saying that Gonzales was “an honest, honorable man in whom I have confidence,” according to an Associated Press report from April.

A few months later, however, Gonzales decided to step down.

On August 27, he gave a brief statement announcing his resignation (effective September 17), stating that “It has been one of my greatest privileges to lead the Department of Justice.” He gave no explanation for his departure. In his resignation letter, Gonzales simply said that “. . . this is the right time for my family and I to begin a new chapter in our lives.”

Gonzales and his wife Rebecca have three sons.

TODAY IN HISTORY
By The Associated Press
Today is Tuesday, Feb. 3, the 34th day of 2011. There are 331 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
Fifty-two years ago, on Feb. 3, 1959, a single-engine plane crashed shortly after midnight near Clear Lake, Iowa, claiming the lives of rock-and-roll stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, as well as pilot Roger Peterson. That same day, an American Airlines Lockheed Electra from Chicago crashed into New York’s East River while approaching LaGuardia Airport, killing 65 of the 73 people on board.
On this date:
In 1809, 202 years ago, German composer Felix Mendelssohn was born in Hamburg. Congress passed an act establishing the Illinois Territory effective March 1.
In 1865, President Abraham Lincoln and Confederate Vice President Alexander H. Stephens held a shipboard peace conference off the Virginia coast; the talks deadlocked over the issue of Southern autonomy.
In 1913, the 16th Amendment to the Constitution, providing for a federal income tax, was ratified.
In 1916, Canada’s original Parliament Buildings, in Ottawa, burned down.
In 1924, the 28th president of the United States, Woodrow Wilson, died in Washington, D.C., at age 67.
In 1930, the chief justice of the United States, William Howard Taft, resigned for health reasons. (He died just over a month later.)
In 1943, during World War II, the U.S. transport ship Dorchester, which was carrying troops to Greenland, sank after being hit by a German torpedo. (Four Army chaplains gave their life belts to four other men, and went down with the ship.)
In 1966, the Soviet probe Luna 9 became the first manmade object to make a soft landing on the moon.
In 1969, Yasser Arafat was elected chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization’ s executive committee during a council meeting in Cairo, Egypt.
In 1989, Alfredo Stroessner, president of Paraguay for more than three decades, was overthrown in a military coup.
Twelve years ago: The Clinton administration told Congress a NATO-led peacekeeping force could be needed in Kosovo for three to five years and might include up to 4,000 American troops.
Seven years ago: John Kerry won Democratic presidential contests in five out of seven states. Work in the U.S. Senate slowed to a crawl, a day after ricin powder was found in the Dirksen Senate Office Building.
Three years ago: The New York Giants scored a late touchdown for a spectacular Super Bowl win, 17-14, that ended the New England Patriots’ run at perfection.
Today’s Birthdays: Comedian Shelley Berman is 85.
Football Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton is 71. Actress Bridget Hanley is 70. Actress Blythe Danner is 68. Singer Dennis Edwards is 68. Football Hall of Famer Bob Griese is 66. Singer-guitarist Dave Davies (The Kinks) is 64. Singer Melanie is 64.
Actress Morgan Fairchild is 61. Actor Nathan Lane is 55. Rock musician Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth) is 55. Actor Thomas Calabro is 52.
Actor-director Keith Gordon is 50. Actress Michele Greene is 49. Country singer Matraca Berg is 47. Actress Maura Tierney is 46.
Actor Warwick Davis is 41. Reggaeton singer Daddy Yankee is 35. Musician Grant Barry is 34.
Singer-songwriter Jessica Harp is 29. Rapper Sean Kingston is 21.
Thought for Today: “I can, therefore I am.” — Simone Weil, French philosopher (born this day in 1909, died 1943).

“The Holocaust became the new Western religion”—

I had come to this exact same conclusion by 1998-1999, during the David Irving Libel Suit against Deborah Lipstadt.  In particular, I concluded and formed the very strong and precise opinion “the Holocaust” had become the basis of the religion of the New World Order of the United Nations, just as the Trojan War was the religion of Ancient Greece, the Punic, Gallic, and Civil Wars the Religion of Pre-Christian Rome, the Crusades the Religion of Mediaeval Europe, Charles the Martyr became the chief subject of Episcopal Sermons during the years 1660-1789, and lastly, just as the “Civil” War of 1861-65 became the “Constitutional” Religion of the United States after 1865-1877.  I never at that time would have dared to articulate or publish this conclusion, especially since in 1998-1999 I was under direct assault for my own involvement in “revisionist civil rights” activism in Texas, asserting that the Civil Rights Laws of the United States applied equally to White people as to people of color, which campaign ultimately led to my disbarment.  I am now happy and grateful to see and share that Gilad Atzmon, a Jewish artist and Historian from Israel, living in Great Britain, has now finally published this precise statement!  It is quite gratifying to see that even a Jew who questions the Global state religion of the Holocaust is accused of Anti-Semitism!
 What will happen if Gilad visits Austria?  Will he be arrested and charged with the same crimes as David Irving?  Will he be put on trial and imprisoned?  Or will he be declared mentally unsound and threatened with psychiatric confinement and threatened with “attainder” of his civil rights for life, just as Jane Burgermeister is facing in Austria this month?  In certain sectors they call me stupid or insane?  Is there any reason why YOU are not eligible for similar treatment?  If you support animal rights?  If you oppose Obama-care?  If you either oppose OR support one hypothesis or another about climate change and global warming?  Only a country which guarantees freedom of thought and expression and debate is truly free…..God Bless Gilad Atzmon, Jane Burgermeister, David Irving, Janet Claire Phelan, Nancy Jo Grant, and everyone like them who dare to speak out against “established truth” in history or science!

Truth, History and Integrity by Gilad Atzmon

Saturday, March 13, 2010 at 2:02PM
Gilad Atzmon

Back in 2007 the notorious American Jewish right-wing organization, the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) announced that it recognised the events in which an estimated 1.5 million Armenians were massacred as “genocide.” The ADL’s national director, Abraham Foxman, insisted that he made the decision after discussing the matter with ‘historians’. For some reason he failed to mention who the historians were, nor did he refer to their credibility or field of scholarship. However, Foxman also consulted with one holocaust survivor who supported the decision.  It was Elie Wiesel, not known for being a leading world expert on the Armenian ordeal.

The idea of a Zionist organization being genuinely concerned, or even slightly moved, by other people’s suffering could truly be a monumental transforming moment in Jewish history. However, this week we learned that the ADL is once again engaged in the dilemma of Armenian suffering. It is not convinced anymore that the Armenians suffered that much. It is now lobbying the American congress not to recognize the killings of Armenians as ‘genocide. This week saw the ADL “speaking out against Congressional acknowledgment of the Armenian Genocide, and is, instead, advocating Turkey’s call for a historical commission to study the events.”

How is it that an event that took place a century ago is causing such a furor? One day it is generally classified as ‘genocide’, the next, it is demoted to an ordinary instance of one man killing another. Was it an ‘historical document’ that, out of nowhere, popped out on Abe Foxman’s desk? Are there some new factual revelations that led to such a dramatic historical shift? l don’t think so.

The ADL’s behaviour is a glimpse into the notion of Jewish history and the Jewish understanding of the past.  For the nationalist and political Jew, history is a pragmatic tale, it is an elastic account. It is foreign to any scientific or academic method.  Jewish history transcends itself beyond factuality,  truthfulness or  correspondence rules with any given vision of reality. It also repels integrity or ethics. It by far prefers total submission, instead of creative and critical thinking. Jewish history is a phantasmic tale that is there to make the Jews happy and the Goyim behave themselves. It is there to serve the interests of one tribe and that tribe only. In practice, from a Jewish perspective,  the decision whether there was an Armenian genocide or not is subject to Jewish interests: is it good for the Jews or is it good for Israel.

Interestingly enough, history is not a particularly ‘Jewish thing’. It is an established fact that not a single Jewish historical text has been written between the 1st century (Josephus Flavius) and early 19th century (Isaak Markus Jost). For almost 2 thousand years Jews were not interested in their own or anyone else’s past, at least not enough to chronicle it. As a matter of convenience, an adequate scrutiny of the past was never a primary concern within the Rabbinical tradition. One of the reasons is probably that there was no need for such a methodical effort. For the Jew who lived during ancient times and the Middle Ages, there was enough in the Bible to answer the most relevant questions to do with day-to-day life, Jewish meaning and fate. As Israeli historian Shlomo Sand puts it, “a secular chronological time was foreign to the ‘Diaspora time’ that was shaped by the anticipation for the coming of the Messiah.”

However, in the mid 19th century, in the light of secularisation, urbanisation, emancipation and due to the decreasing authority of the Rabbinical leaders, an emerging need of an alternative cause rose amongst the awakening European Jews. All of a sudden, the emancipated Jew had to decide who he was and where he came from. He also started to speculate what his role might be within the rapidly opening Western society.

This is where Jewish history in its modern form was invented. This is also where Judaism was transformed from a world religion into a ‘land registry’ with some clearly devastating racially orientated and expansionist implications. As we know, Shlomo Sand’s account of the ‘Jewish Nation’ as a fictional invention is yet to be challenged academically. However, the dismissal of factuality or commitment to truthfulness is actually symptomatic of any form of contemporary Jewish collective ideology and identity politics. The ADL’s treatment of the Armenian topic is just one example. The Zionist’s dismissal of a Palestinian past and heritage is just another example. But in fact any Jewish collective vision of the past is inherently Judeo-centric and  oblivious to any academic or scientific procedure.

When I was Young

When I was young and naïve I regarded history as a serious academic matter. As I understood it, history had something to do with truth seeking, documents, chronology and facts. I was convinced that history aimed to convey a sensible account of the past based on methodical research. I also believed that it was premised on the assumption that understanding the past may throw some light over our present and even help us to shape a prospect of a better future.  I grew up in the Jewish state and it took me quite a while to understand that the Jewish historical narrative is very different. In the Jewish intellectual ghetto, one decides what the future ought to be, then one constructs ‘a past’ accordingly. Interestingly enough, this exact method is also prevalent amongst Marxists. They shape the past so it fits nicely into their vision of the future. As the old Russian joke says, “when the facts do not conform with the Marxist ideology, the Communist social scientists amend the facts (rather than revise the theory)”.

When I was young, I didn’t think that history was a matter of political decisions or agreements between a rabid Zionist lobby and its favorite holocaust survivor. I regarded historians as scholars who engaged in adequate research following some strict procedures. When I was young I even considered becoming an historian.

When I was young and naive I was also somehow convinced that what they told us about our ‘collective’ Jewish past really happened. I believed it all, the Kingdom of David, Massada, and then the Holocaust: the soap, the lampshade*, the death march, the six million.

As it happened, it took me many years to understand that the Holocaust, the core belief of the contemporary Jewish faith, was not at all an historical narrative for historical narratives do not need the protection of the law and politicians. It took me years to grasp that my great-grandmother wasn’t made into a ‘soap’ or a ‘lampshade’*. She probably perished out of exhaustion, typhus or maybe even by mass shooting. This was indeed bad and tragic enough, however not that different from the fate of many millions of Ukrainians who learned what communism meant for real. “Some of the worst mass murderers in history were Jews” writes Zionist Sever Plocker on the Israeli Ynet disclosing the Holodomor and Jewish involvement in this colossal crime, probably the greatest crime of the 20th century. The fate of my great-grandmother was not any different from hundreds of thousands of German civilians who died in an orchestrated indiscriminate bombing, because they were Germans. Similarly, people in Hiroshima died just because they were Japanese. 1 million Vietnamese died just because they were Vietnamese and 1.3 million Iraqis died because they were Iraqis. In short the tragic circumstances of my great grandmother wasn’t that special after all.

It Doesn’t make sense

It took me years to accept that the Holocaust narrative, in its current form, doesn’t make any historical sense. Here is just one little anecdote to elaborate on:

If, for instance, the Nazis wanted the Jews out of their Reich (Judenrein – free of Jews), or even dead, as the Zionist narrative insists, how come they marched hundreds of thousands of them back into the Reich at the end of the war? I have been concerned with this simple question for more than a while. I eventually launched into an historical research of the topic and happened to learn from Israeli holocaust historian professor Israel Gutman that Jewish prisoners actually joined the march voluntarily. Here is a testimony taken from Gutman’s book

One of my friends and relatives in the camp came to me on the night of the evacuation and offered a common hiding place somewhere on the way from the camp to the factory. …The intention was to leave the camp with one of the convoys and to escape near the gate, using the darkness we thought to go a little far from the camp. The temptation was very strong. And yet, after I considered it all  I then decided to join (the march) with all the other inmates and to share their fate “ (Israel Gutman [editor], People and Ashes: Book Auschwitz – Birkenau, Merhavia 1957).

I am left puzzled here, if the Nazis ran a death factory in Auschwitz-Birkenau, why would the Jewish prisoners join them at the end of the war? Why didn’t the Jews wait for their Red liberators?

I think that 65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz, we must be entitled to start to ask the necessary questions. We should ask for some conclusive historical evidence and arguments rather than follow a religious narrative that is sustained by political pressure and laws. We should strip the holocaust of its Judeo-centric exceptional status and treat it as an historical chapter that belongs to a certain time and place

65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz we should reclaim our history and ask why? Why were the Jews hated? Why did European people  stand up against their next door neighbours? Why are the Jews hated in the Middle East, surely they had a chance to open a new page in their troubled history? If they genuinely planned to do so, as the early Zionists claimed, why did they fail? Why did America tighten its immigration laws amid the growing danger to European Jews? We should also ask for what purpose do the holocaust denial laws serve? What is the holocaust religion there to conceal? As long as we fail to ask questions, we will be subjected to Zionists and their Neocons agents’ plots. We will continue killing in the name of Jewish suffering. We will maintain our complicity in Western imperialist crimes against humanity.

As devastating as it may be, at a certain moment in time, a horrible chapter was given an exceptionally meta-historical status. Its ‘factuality’ was sealed by draconian laws and its reasoning was secured by social and political settings. The Holocaust  became the new Western religion.  Unfortunately, it is the most sinister religion known to man. It is a license to kill, to flatten, no nuke, to wipe, to rape, to loot and to ethnically cleanse. It made vengeance and revenge into a Western value. However, far more concerning is the fact that it robs humanity of its heritage, it is there to stop us from looking into our past with dignity. Holocaust religion robs humanity of its humanism. For the sake of peace and future generations, the holocaust must be stripped of its exceptional status immediately. It must be subjected to thorough historical scrutiny. Truth and truth seeking is an elementary human experience. It must prevail.

*During WWII and after it was widely believed that soaps and lampshades were being mass produced from the bodies of Jewish victims. In recent years the Israeli Holocaust museum admitted that there was no truth in any of those accusations.

Article originally appeared on Gilad Atzmon (http://www.gilad.co.uk/).

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Death Came, as it must to all men, to Georges Kourembanas, my brother-in-law, age 51

I will say it again:

I have been an unworthy hypocrite to judge you; you and I were so much alike; you were always my brother; I shall miss you.

CEL III: Georges Kourembanas was a big man

He was a great body builder!

Georges in competition sometime in the mid-1980s

who loved his women, loved his dogs, loved his liquor and cigars, and was loved by all in turn.  He was strong and seemingly indestructible, but he just died at age 51.  How I resented him!  How I envied him!  How I hated him for his life of leisure and luxury living the last ten years of his life on Greek Islands in the Aegean and Cancun!  How I envied the fact that certain people loved and cared for him who could not love and would never care a fig for me!   How I wished that I were as physically strong as he was!   How I wished I had his life, and so, could any two males of the human species be less alike than me and my brother-in-law Georges, who died one week ago on Friday, January 22, 2010, at about 8-8:30 PM in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico, at his home with his mistress Lena who called him “Daddy”, even though knowing that he was beloved by his wife Lisa?

Last Saturday January 30, 2010, Georges Kourembanas was laid to rest beside his father, Panagiotis Kourembanas, a Greek Orthodox Priest, who also died young (at 54, in 1984) in Detroit, Michigan, though both father and son were born in Athens, Greece.  His family all surrounded and mourned him during this past week, although he had literally been an exile, shunned or ignored by all but his Anglo-American wife Lisa, who collapsed at the graveside, his mother, who after 37 years in the United States speaks less English than most foreign secondary school pupils immediately after flunking their first year exams in English, and his sisters, one of whom is my wife from whom I have been estranged for 8 continuous years now and my son, whom she and the system hid from me until he broke through the barricades and found me.

Not having any memory of the heartaches associated with Georges during 1990-1999, my 17 year old son Charlie was very sad about his uncle Georges, who died at age 51, just about two weeks after his birthday in fact, which was January 9—he was born in 1959, one year, three months and one day older than I am now.  He was healthy, at least considering everything, he was a body-builder (contestant representing Greece in the Mr. Universe pageant in 1983), who later became addicted to steroids and then to crack cocaine, which caused his family (including me) no end of trouble and grief.  But he was a good natured and happy guy. “I have come to bury Caesar, not to praise him”, said Shakespeares’ Mark Anthony, “the evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones, so let it be with Caesar.”  In Georges’ case, it seems almost exactly the opposite (his family cried and forgave him all his sins), except that I plan here to write the good, the bad, the ugly, and try to put it all in the context of the world that I think made him who and what he was, and how he and I, as unlike as any two people could be, in so many ways have travelled along similar and parallel paths…rather lonely, difficult paths in fact….

You see, Georges and I both became, in very distinctive ways, victims of American injustice and oppression and the corruption of the American government in the “land of the free.”  We were both deprived of our rights.  We were both made to seem less that ordinary worthy citizens, and we suffered from these unconstitutional offenses against us, as did our country which inflicted these offenses…

First I should quote what my son Charlie, born August 23, 1992 under windows taped with St. Andrews Crosses at St. Mary’s Hospital “Birth Place” in Palm Beach, Florida, during the early landfall of Hurricane Andrews, wrote about his Uncle—(The Following Paragraphs are Charlie’s epitaph for his uncle):

CEL IV: To me, to my mother, to his own mother, and to his wife and friends, Georges Kourembanas was a Great Man, he lived a life that in some ways was extraordinary, eccentric, perhaps unenviable, but many, including some who never met him, would agree that there was something Great about his heart and soul as well as his body—his physical strength.  His mother was my maternal grandmother, Neonina (aka “Nina”) Kourembanas.

One of the dearest of all God’s Saints to me is Saint George.   I grew up reading my Father’s English stories of St. George and the Dragon under the white and red flag of England, but St. George was also the Patron Saint of my mother’s native Greece with its universally recognized blue and white flag, but also of Aragon, thus triangulating Europe (and my parents’ lives—my mother from Greece, my father of Anglo-American heritage, but they met in Mexico, speaking Spanish).   One of the few things my parents ever agreed on was to celebrate St. George’s Day on April 23, and we used to go to Saint George’s Church on St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans, where there were dragonslayer windows made and set by George Comfort Tiffany (damaged but not destroyed in Hurricane Katrina, 2005).

My Uncle Georges, had a traditional Orthodox Greek icon of Saint George in his room above his bed.  One of my earliest memories with Georges was in the 90s when I went to a Karate Tournament.  I won by tapping my opponents head, Georges remembered that very well and reminded it to me many times; I imagine he was proud as he himself was a boxer who won “golden gloves” in several tournaments (he told me this when I was in Cancun during the summer of 2007).

If I were to describe my uncle Georges in one word it would be that which he told me ran in our blood, Spartan.

Beside mere physical ability strength Georges was one of the kindest men I have ever met, he would often tell me that he loved me with all his heart, and “Charlie I have a big heart.”

Together while spending the summer with Georges in Cancun during July and August of 2007 he decided to train me in body building for he was one of best bodybuilders in the world. During the 80s he was awarded Mr. Michigan three times consequently he went to Greece and became Mr. Greece then in the Mr Universe competition which he won 8th place at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Georges Kourembanas was born in the Kingdom of Greece, son of an Orthodox Priest who married a model, so an unlikely start for a champion body builder. His Mother and Father immigrated to the United States in 1970 foreseeing the downfall of the Dictatorship of Papadoupoulous, and meeting up with George’s maternal Uncle John Samohin and George’s maternal Grandmother in Detroit, bringing both of Georges’ young sister, my mother Elena, with them (my aunt Alex was born in Detroit in 1973).

In the summer of 1974, after Georges had already started working out at the original PowerHouse Gym on Woodward St. in Detroit,  Georges went to Greece to visit with his parents and little sister Elena; there he witnessed the commotion in the streets of Athens during the Turkish invasion of Cyprus.

By 1980 Georges won “golden gloves” in boxing, having already won 1977 Teen Mr. Highlands 4th Place, and several other teen bodybuilding awards.  After graduating from High School George went to Wayne State University in Detroit. In 1981 Georges won Mr. Michigan, then in 1982 he was awarded Mr. Michigan Most Muscular, and then in 1983 he won 1st place Tall Mr. Michigan.

Since Georges was born in Greece, and could was not eligible to compete for the American title Mr. USA, so he went back to Greece to become Mr. Greece and to represent Greece in the 1984 Mr. Universe tournament in Las Vegas at Caesar’s Palace, where he took eighth place.

In 1984 Georges and his family suffered the loss of his Father, Panagiotis (aka “Peter”) Kourembanas; who was a Greek Orthodox Priest and fell of a heart attack while delivering the Good Friday Sermon in Toronto, Canada (Detroit and Toronto form part of the same Orthodox Diocese, or at least they did back then).

Georges by this time had already come to be known as ‘The Greek’ in many parts of Detroit. He met his future wife Lisa Ann Cook in 1983/4.  She was a beauty queen and a body builder herself—they were quite a striking couple.

Like so many athletes, I’m afraid that my uncle succumbed to the temptation of “enhancement” drugs, i.e., steroids, and unfortunately for him this led to other kinds of “substance abuse” with consequences I think my father will write more about below.  Drugs are apparently sold on credit—but since repossession of collateral to users is rarely an option, collection techniques tend to be significantly more than dunning letters followed by notices of default and acceleration.

In connection with one deal gone bad, Georges was shot on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1990, in the head through the ear, a bullet that he would carry with him to his death, and while still conscious he protected himself, left the area in his 1987 Camaro, and instead of going to the hospital right away he drove, with blood squirting out of head, to Lisa under the impression that he was going to die. When Lisa saw him she convinced him to go to the hospital where he spent about a week not knowing wheather he would survive or not. By the Grace/Protection of God Georges said he survived.

Georges was shot again in Austin on Christmas morning 1990—he carried some of the bullets he got on those two occasions to his grave, but God had other plans for him than to die a victim of crime.  Instead, Georges died a victim of injustice, American injustice, and that’s where my father is going to take over and write the rest of this.  I can say very little more, except that my whole family have cried every night since he died, and I have lost one of my best friends, one of the few people who remained loyal both to my Father and Mother (along with his wife Lisa) during their long divorce and fighting.

CEL III: I confess that there was a time when I felt my brother in law was a terrible burden, an imposition, a weight sinking my life which I could not bear.  I blamed my wife and mother-in-law for what I called their “Co-Dependence” on Georges during his steroid abuse and crack-cocaine addiction years.  Today as we all remember him, I will try to forget the bitterness that I once felt—the unjust accusations I once made that he was the breaking factor in my marriage to Elena—because it was obviously our fault and no one else’s—oh well, perhaps some fault can be laid at the doors of “the system”, some of its judicial officers and agents, and particularly one false and treacherous Hungarian archaeologist ex-friend of mine, perhaps they were to blame also, but not Georges—Georges was true blue—flawed but stained if by anything then only with his own blood, and his own human frailty—yes, frailty, for all that he was strong enough to tear phonebooks apart.

Most of the substances which constitute modern illegal drugs have been known to man since the dawn of time….at least since the beginning of civilization. Some modern drugs, like “LSD” the favorite of so many young people in the 1960s-70s, and “Crack”–the synthetic form of Cocaine which became popular in the 1980s, and to which Georges eventually became addicted, are artificial, but clearly the need for mind-numbing intoxicants and poisons is one of the “discontents” of civilization to which Sigmund Freud so often referred.

In Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World”, a substance called “Soma” was rationed out to all people liberally—without any of the side effects of alcohol or other drugs.  The importance of drugs to the 19th century British Empire is epitomized by the “Opium Wars” which forced drugs on an isolationist China.  The importance of drugs to the 20th century American Empire is punctuated by the events of 1919, during which year the United States acquired the patent for Heroin and Bayer Aspirin from Germany as part of the Treaty of Versailles, at the same time that the United States passed the 18th Amendment imposing the Prohibition so definitive of the 1920s, and the origins of both organized crime and the earliest formation of a Federal Police State in the United States of America.  There are those who say that William Randolph Hearst was responsible for making George Washington’s favorite crop—Cannabis Sativa illegal in the 1930s to protect his own interest in synthetic fiber ropes, but the true beneficiaries of the suppression of marijuana were each and every police department and above all the FBI, DEA, and ATF organs of the Federal government, which grew and maximized their power with every new “commercial” regulation of drugs in violation of the constitutional liberties of the people.

Psychoactive or narcotic drugs have been used throughout history, and alcohol is still used without prescription to this day.  So I have asked myself, since I was a small child, how is it that opium aristocratically inspired so many poets and other historical figures from Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius to Cardinal Richlieu, as well as Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Charles Dickens, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Edgar Allen Poe only to become an abomination forbidden by law in modern times….all over the Americas and Europe….

The reason to me is obvious: government cannot thrive except by forbidding and monopolizing that which people crave.  The earliest example of this in the history of the United States is the play of righteous emotions similar to those I confessed, at the start of this post, to feel about my brother-in-law Georges: envy and resentment of what others have.  The War Between the States in the years 1861-1865 was about many things, but one of them was the envy and resentment of the Northern Whites who prided themselves on hard work and self-sacrifice against the more indulgent, hedonistic, and languid slave-owners of the Southern white world.

The 13th Amendment forbade slavery or involuntary servitude, “except as a punishment for crime”—and from the day of Lee’s surrender at Appomattox until the present day, the prison population of the United States of America has grown until it is the largest in the world (relative to the population of the country as a whole) and the absolute number of incarcerated, paroled and otherwise judicially restrained black people now exceeds the number of African-American slaves in 1860 (and the number of white prisoners, parolees, and probationers exceeds the entire population of the American Colonies in 1776).

Three years before the secession of South Carolina on December 20 1860 through the secession of Texas on February 1, 1861, the United States Supreme Court, per Chief Justice Taney, handed down a significant decision in a case called Scott v. Sanford (1857) which decided, among many other things, that one state could not declare to be illegal a form of property which was legal in others, as a matter of comity, due process of law, and many other reasons.  The “due process” reasoning of Chief Justice Taney’s opinion in “the Dred Scott” case is still worth reading, although the memory of the 19th century’s most deadly and devastating war, three constitutional amendments, and many generations of civil rights litigation have otherwised tarnished the memory of the only U.S. Supreme Court case which can ever be said to have had an effect more disastrous than the Judgment of Paris….

So the thirteenth amendment abolished slavery or involuntary servitude EXCEPT AS A PUNISHMENT FOR CRIME, and all of a sudden, the U.S. Criminal Codes started to expand exponentially—because civilized society will apparently not exist without slaves.  Having abolished one species of private property by war and constitutional amendment, the United States Government in the 20th Century started to regulate all manner of commerce and private property, which caused much unhappy spinning in the graves of the Founding Fathers.  Worst of all, the 1920s saw the triumph of the First Prohibition, in which the constitution was amended to forbid the sale of alcohol.  Having proved to be the worst experiment in the moralistic legislative history of the human race, Prohibition of Alcoholic Liquors was repealed in December  of 1933, but it was almost immediately replaced by utterly unconstitutional restraints on drugs such as cannabis sativa, cocaine, opium, and all their derivatives.  The “commerce clause” justification for the federal regulation of drugs is a farce, one of the cruelest hoaxes ever played on a free people, but to explain why no American Patriot would ever suggest that George Washington should have ploughed under his profitable “rope” crop would just be to go too far astray from this story, which is still about my brother-in-law, Georges Kourembanas.

The bottom line, to my mind, is that Government wanted to expand its power, and Government DID expand its power, by controlling what people have always naturally desired and craved: narcotic and psychoactive drugs.  The “War on Drugs”, since the phrase was coined by New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller in an attempt to fill the prisons of his state and build more, but especially since this “War” was adopted by Richard Nixon whose advisors told him not merely to make “detente” with Communist China, but also to start emulating its policies of mass incarceration, has operated as one of the largest slavery-cum-corporate welfare programs in the history of the world.  Vast numbers of unemployed youths, skillful middle-aged businessmen, and entrepreneurs of every kind have, since about 1966, been swept into prison through coerced plea agreements engineered by a cabal of licensed attorneys and the judges who love and control them together with the corporate franchises which fund all of them, and between 1-2% of the American population is now locked into slavery from which escape is much less likely, and emancipation much more stringently regulated, than Antebellum slavery ever was in the South.

Computers mean that tracking of “escaped slaves” is much more certain and recapture much more likely than it ever was in the days of the “underground railroad”—and of course, all middle class whites, Northern and Southern, Eastern and Western, rejoice in the burgeoning population of the prisons until they or their relatives end up in the trap—at which time it’s just “too bad, so sad” that the privileged middle class population never learned that “none can be free until all are free.”

White America loves the “war on drugs” and the explosion of prison population which has accompanied it.  African and Hispanic Americans can be disproportionately incarcerated for the most trivial crimes, and the most uppity and enterprising white people are likewise incarcerated or threatened with incarceration whenever they get to “uppity” and/or “big for their britches”—unless of course, they are part of the truly immunized elite inner circle.  Entrepreneurial spirit and individual initiative rot in prisons—but corporate values flourished and corporate subservience is instilled in prison, in case you missed the lessons or ignored them in U.S. Elementary-High School (or for that matter in British schools whether portrayed by Dickens or in Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”).  Every indication is that President Barack Hussein Obama fully intends to crush every relic of American freedom that exists, and enforce a rigid conformity to his plans by ever expanding the powers of government through Homeland Security and more and more prisons, private and/or public. Guantanamo will eventually be closed, of course, and replaced by prisons inside the U.S. where indefinite detention without trial will be permitted and the Writ of Habeas Corpus lost forever.

But this is the unjust world reality which trapped and destroyed Georges Kourembanas during the years 1990-2000 and, more than any other single factor, caused his death in exile, however luxurious, in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico on January 22, 2010.

You see, Georges, as noted above, was not born in the United States.  He was accepted and respected as an American in Michigan for years, as so many immigrants have been.  But Georges never gave up his Greek passport—he was content with a “Green Card” (as was his sister, my wife, throughout our marriage—although since our separation she has apparently gotten a Blue American Passport and given up her Democratia Hellinika-E.C. Diabaterio which I always thought was so neat….).  Well, at the very least, she’s voting now…..I’m not quite sure about all that….but I digress…

Georges Kourembanas was (unsurprisingly) arrested several times during his years “under the influence.”  In this he differed little from another fellow named George who just happened to be governor of Texas in 1999.  Aside from the natural class-based consequences of having an Orthodox Priest rather than a U.N. Ambassador and CIA Director for a Father, Georges Kourembanas’ life was little less accomplished than George W. Bush’s.  But as George W. Bush was riding on the modern American prison-based slave-ocracy and its attendant envies and corruptions, Georges Kourembanas was arrested and the government of his adopted land sought his deportation.   There is no “exile” for American citizens who misbehave, but there is deportation for legal residents who do the same or less.  Literally HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS bordering on MILLIONS of Hispanics are imprisoned throughout the United States for nothing much more than job hunting and maybe then getting drunk (and stopped) on a Saturday night.

I have often said that if Mexico were to imprison rowdy Americans in Cancun, Acapulco, and Mazatlan at the same rate that Mexicans are rounded up in the United States, that the United States would invade Mexico and bring about the North American Union immediately, without further delay or debate.  I also think to myself that there is no real contradiction between building a big prison-like unescapable/uncrossable fence along the Mexican border and proposed a North American Union, because the corporate powers of the United States would like nothing better than to convert Mexico into one gigantic prison-labor camp from which workers could be employed or removed as market conditions should necessitate.  If the politicians of Mexico had any pride….things would be different, but they are mostly former employees of American Corporations such as Coca-Cola, so it hardly matters.

“Moral Turpitude” is what makes people like Georges Kourembanas deportable.  “Moral Turpitude” is a concept as amorphous as “original sin” which Immigration Courts use to send “undesirables” back from whence they came.  Was Georges Kourembanas less desirable than George W. Bush?  In my opinion, and probably in the opinion of hundreds of thousands of widows and orphans around the world at least from Iraq-to Afghanistan, there is really no comparison or competition at all.  Georges Kourembanas as a man who loves his women, loves, his dogs, and loved his liquor, and never hurt anyone.  “No one died when Clinton lied” was one of my favorite Bush-era bumper-stickers.

Georges family—my in-laws—took good care of him at the same time that they shunned me as my marriage to his sister resolved itself into a dew.  Care packages and love and visits flowed from Austin to Athens during the early 2000s after Georges took “voluntary departure” instead of deportation—he could have contested deportation but he would have stayed in jail for God knows how long while he did, and he was never convicted of anything which the Greek authorities thought worthy of note.  After a year or so in Athens Georges eventually settled in a Lemon grove amid olive and fig trees on a little island in the Aegean.  He lived there with Lena his mistress while his wife Lisa and his mother and sister and even my son visited him de temps en temps.

I am sure he was lonely and bored living there in a fruit orchard, but his family took care of him, so he never had to work, and I did envy him his existence no end.  I lived along during the years 2002-2007, but I talked to Georges’ American wife Lisa—sometimes almost daily, sometimes only once a week, recently (especially since I left Texas in 2007) not quite so often.  But Georges and Lisa talked to me and helped me keep up with news about my son when the truly criminal state domestic relations courts of Williamson County, Texas, took my son away from me.  So I got to know Georges better and talked to him more often by telephone during those years than I ever had when he lived in the United States.  And yes, Georges was a very kind, good, and big-hearted man, and he always assured me that my son loved me and missed me—and he was obviously telling me the truth.

His wife Lisa?  Well, I have often written that Georges and Lisa were like Tristan and Isolde—always separated, always longing for each other.  Lisa was the ideal loyal and patient wife, in every way tolerant of Georges and his needs (including his need for a permanent female companion on the other side of the Atlantic).  In spite of the situational peculiarities, I think that they really did love each other on an epic, Wagnerian level which few can understand.  Lisa supported Georges, assisted occasionally by my wife Elena and her mother Nina, not so much by any of the other Greek relatives on this side of the Atlantic, except possibly for Tia Maria whom I only met a few times at her home in Jackson Heights, Queens, New York City.  Lisa, like Georges, had a huge heart, great compassion and almost boundless love, at the same time that she became physically weak due to breast-implant poisoning caused by Dow Pharmaceauticals.  She was as much a victim of the American Corporate love-hate affair with drugs, in that sense, as Georges himself.  But Lisa was my true and steadfast friend and through her love for Georges I came to care for my brother-in-law more than I ever dreamed I could have.  My wife Elena always resents the fact that Lisa (alone among my in-laws) supported me in my quest for custody of my son, and she sometimes quotes hatefully and sarcastically how I called Lisa my “Rock of Gibraltar”, but I stand by my evaluation.  I know of no one truer and more loyal and steadfast than Lisa Ann Cook, and Georges was the luckiest man alive to have the love and generous acceptance and tolerance and support of such a wonderful woman, who never judged others but always tried to understand why those who inflicted harm on her might have done so.   In this, she was the truest of true Christians.

So Georges was strong, likable if not downright lovable, and yet he was caught up in currents of history which rendered his life difficult, a struggle, almost impossible.  He was “a man without a country”—never quite American enough to give up his Greek passport while he was living here throughout the nearly thirty years from 1970-1999.  Georges Kourembanas was a three-time “Mr. Michigan” (different awards) who represented Greece in the “Mr. Universe” competition in Las Vegas, Nevada.  He was determined to be a morally turpitudinous undesirable by the same government which created first the demand for drugs and then the war against drugs as a means of maximizing governmental power and control over the population at large.

Was America made any safer or more morally upstanding by deporting my brother-in-law?  No, definitely not—America became poorer and probably more dangerous—indeed, almost certainly more dangerous, because every person removed against his will is another person whose destroyed life is a feather-in-the cap of brutal authoritarianism in America.

Several members of my family-in-law feel so very sad and guilty that they did not do more for Georges during his lifetime.  My main suggestion that may have improved his life was that he relocated from Greece to Cancun, and was closer to his family during the last several years of his life as a consequence.  I made this suggestion because almost as completely as the United States as George’s adopted homeland, Mexico era durante muchos anos mi segunda Patria, aun mas que Inglaterra—Mexico was the land of more of my young adulthood life, dreams and ambitions than any other, and I figured that George could benefit from the amazing Caribbean winds and waters of Northern Quintana Roo.   I had intended to spend at least half of time with Georges in Cancun (en mi Mexico lindo y querido), but for several reasons that never happened.  I am happy to say that my son Charlie, whose first trips outside the U.S. were to Yucatan and Quintana Roo Mexico as a baby, toddler, and elementary schoolboy, was able to spend one summer with George in 2007—even though the purpose at that time was to make sure that Charlie spent as little time in contact with me as humanly possible….

One of the reasons, of course, that I was lacking in funds to spend half of my time in Mexico during the first decade of the Third Millenium Anno Domini was the troubles I had during these same years with the same American government which oppressed my brother—yes, in that he was not just my brother in law, but my brother.   I too had to struggle with charges of ridiculously trivial criminality (I never did drugs—at least I have never done them as a mature adult—that wasn’t my problem—I had plenty of others—when I was indicted (coincidentally in December 1999, shortly after Georges took his involuntary departure) my pre-trial release officer finally stopped giving me the degrading urine tests because they were just pointless).

I too had to struggle with questions of moral turpitude and the significance of such charges for my professional life.  I had had such a fine education and opportunities unparalleled in most people’s lives.  I was very lucky.  But in 1997 I had stood up to the system and sued my local police department for not one but 7-9 instances of police brutality, corruption, and civil rights violations.  And at that point, all-of-a-sudden, my previously essentially dull and blameless life became “morally turpitudinous” and I became in the eyes of many critics an “incompetent attorney.”

So if Georges Kourembanas can hear me—if he had a coin for the Ferryman Charon and has thus crossed the River Styx—or if he is standing somewhere in the upper levels of limbo or purgatory, I hope he will hear my apology for my hypocrisy in criticizing him, in thinking myself superior to him, in believing that my education was in any way superior to his physical strength and good heart (even though his physical heart finally gave out on him, much too soon).  I apologize to him that I could introduce him to the Quintana Roo and Yucatan and Mexico and Belize that I know and love, because I think it would have made his last few years so much better than just hanging around the beach and hotel zone of Cancun.  He and I were both victims of some of the very same authoritarian and repressive forces in the United States in Texas which reached their political apogee in the years after 1993-6.  He and I were both victims of the streamlining and mass production of criminal prosecutions in the United States which all have, as Ayn Rand predicted so many years ago, the sole purpose of rendering us all “criminals” just waiting to be arrested here “in the land of the free” or any of the formerly freedom-loving countries of Europe or the Americas.

Georges and I are also victims of some of the same personal and familial situations.  Now in his epitaph I will not speculate here on what any members of his family could have done for him that they did not, because all I know for sure is that they loved him more than me, so very much more, in spite of all his flaws, and since he was blood, I suppose I can forgive them that.   But in the midst of all that I think he was ten times blessed to have Lisa as his wife and lifetime companion and supporter.   The bottom line is that our two lives, so different, as that of my late brother-in-law and my own, were actually parallel in terms of the circumstances of our “exile” from society.  I still envy him for all the love he enjoyed, and up to a point, I even envy him his early death in Mexico.  Sometimes I wish that I had died, when I had the chance, ten years ago in Egypt.  But I apparently had a purpose to live, and for that reason I do continue to live, and breath, and fight, and remember the pointless injuries done to Georges, my brother-in-law, my brother-in-suffering, and my brother-in-the sometimes loneliness of exile.