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Bush’s Manifest Destiny: A White Man’s Burden

Bush’s Manifest Destiny: A White Man’s Burden

2 December 2006

Ample historical statements by American leaders – all white males – back up the theory that our nation’s westward expansion was due to a sense of divine or "manifest destiny."

That was true even for the first settlements. Manhattan was allegedly bought from Native Americans for $24.00 in trinkets, but the rest of the United States was seized primarily through conquest.

And the conquest was often bloody and unforgiving.

To most American government officials and settlers, the Native Americans were heathens to be subdued or annihilated. For many of the white immigrants to what became the United States, they were on a divine mission to tame the savages and bring "Christian civilization" to the land that lay before them.

Even though Native Americans occupied most of what became the United States, the land "belonged" to the Christian white man due to a "divine mandate" and "superior civilization."

And also, because the white men from Europe could win – pure and simple. They were victorious because God and military might were on their side, according to their thinking.

BuzzFlash recounts this brief summary of America’s historical expansion to the West because it is key to understanding George W. Bush.

Yes, he may have enormous psychiatric obstacles that don’t allow him to admit failure. He may have extreme personal intellectual limitations that don’t allow him to admit complexity. He may also have people like Dick Cheney and Karl Rove pulling his strings – and they have a variety of other motivations for U.S. policies in the Middle East

But for Bush, it is essential in understanding his sense of personal entitlement to realize that he embodies the arrogant "weight" of "the white man’s burden."

For him, the process of bringing "civilization" to the "dark skin heathens" -- ones who practice a "pagan" faith -- is the foundation of his certitude. Because if you remove that sense of "manifest destiny" from his "mission," nothing remains but utter, deluded, horrific failure.

And Bush cannot personally admit to failure, because it is only the certitude of his "mission" that allows him to dismiss the need to acknowledge reality.

Bush doesn’t know what victory looks like, smells like or acts like. He only knows that victory ends up being defined as not being perceived as losing.

Because a perceived "loss" means that his life-long sense of entitlement to power -- due to his lineage, color and religious beliefs – rests on nothing more than feet of clay.

For this delusion -- and our historical precedent as a nation -- our Gis and Iraqis are continuing to experience the horror of Iraq. What is happening in that nation now is the stuff of nightmares of mutilation and death.

A nation and a world are held hostage to one man’s fear that Iraq will be his "Custer’s Last Stand."

And it is beginning to look more and more as if that may indeed be the case.


*** ENDS ***

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