Sunday, November 05, 2006

Don't Let Freedom Down - (Warning: Not Available on Al Jazeera)


Always good to remember the great things about freedom, especially when it's under assult. Another cleaned-up version of that incredible rooftop session from January 30th 1969 is available here. I prefer the rough footage.

6 comments:

  1. Interesting,considering the personal philosophys of each band member would most likely be dead against Neocon approaches to the world we live in. It is also interesting that although there is a lot of talk about "defending freedom" by right wingers, the measures being taken to "defend" those freedoms are so often leading to a curtailment of freedom in our nations with each passing day. On the one hand, we do have to be careful about outside nations or new cultures from within, dictating our freedom. On the other hand, we also have to be careful of certain people in our own nations who would just love to use this opportunity to take our freedoms away by using fear as the means to do so. So I say the world has to look out for Islamists,extremist liberals, and extremist rightists. That is a war on three fronts, that freedom has to fight. Few people are in the middle.

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  2. Of course, Anonymous is right, it is likely that the artists in question would certainly not have been “neo-conservative” in their day; as a present day “Neocon” neither was I. In fact, I was as “liberal” as they likely were. ‘Neocon’ usually means a former liberal who is “new to conservatism.” My personal evolution began in the 1980’s. We are a very long distance from those days, the world has evolved, the situation has evolved, many people have evolved, and I have personally evolved. (It is true however that many people are still stuck in a 60’s time warp). My guess is, and I may be wrong, that the two living Beatles, Paul and Ringo, are closer to my views today than yours. But that doesn’t really matter even if true. The important point is that Freedom must be defended, it is not free. We temporarily gave up certain freedoms during WWII, it may be necessary again.

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  3. Hmm,well I cannot speak of Ringos position on things. But I know that Paul is deeply against George W Bush and the foreign policy of the current U.S and U.K Governments. It could be said that all the Beatles would certainly "defend freedom" in the sense of relatively recent cultures within our countries now dictating what we can or cannot say, write, draw, play. But I just cannot see someone like Lennon or Harrison (if they were still alive) supporting the military adventures of the Bush/Blair camp around the world. Lennon changed as a personality several times in his life, true. So it is hard to say what he would be like now. But Harrison supporting rightist politics and pre-emptive invasions? Hmm, I can't see it. Maybe I am wrong though.

    Our domestic cultural freedoms certainly need to be defended. But we don't need to invade other countries and oust regimes in order to defend that (IMO). That is the big "con" of the last 5 years (IMO) that has been played on the British and American public. Defence of our own culture and domestic freedoms takes place within our own domestic politics. As for - "We temporarily gave up certain freedoms during WWII, it may be necessary again.". It is an argument that some feel may have validity, and it something I also don't totally dismiss. Thing is. When pressed for evidence and explanation of how many of the "protection" measures being rushed through will actually "help" prevent terrorism,our governments tend to dodge the questions. It makes people wary of what is going on.

    For example. Here in Britain, the Government is chomping at the bit to introduce biometric I.D cards, despite public opinions from top police officers that it won't do diddly squat to stop illegal immigrants or terrorism. A terrorist can have a British passport, and have worked in a kids school before deciding one day to walk on a bus and blow himself up in London. And supposedly the idea is that you won't have to have your I.D card on you all the time. You will be asked to report to a police station with it in 30 days. So how does that stop illegal immigranst? Despite this, our Government is trying to make these compulsory by using the "fear factor" of terrorists and illegal immigrants, and even wants us to pay out of our own pocket for something "they" wish to enforce. These things certainly won't be temporary, I am guessing. I personally don't trust our government on most things now.

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  4. I certainly understand a healthy distrust of big government, which is one of the reasons I became a Republican in the 1980’s. Republican’s are generally viewed in the United States as the “small government, less taxes, less regulations, more personal freedom and stronger on national defense” party. Although the Bush administration has not taken the traditional Republican “small government” approach and that has damaged all Republicans. In Any event the preamble to the US constitution states that the government’s primary mission is to: “promote the general welfare and provide for the common defense.” Please notice the difference in wording: “promote” the general welfare, as opposed to “provide” for the common defense. In other words, the primary mission is to “provide” for the common defense of the country. We simply have a disagreement on how to go about that. I don’t believe it’s the mission of the US government to sit around in the US waiting to be attacked i.e. Pearle Harbor or 9/11: Please notice that we have not been attacked since 9/11. We must be proactive. You on the other hand seem to think that Islamo-terrorism is primarily a domestic law enforcement issue. I strongly disagree; it’s as simple as that. By the way, when the video in question was made (January 30, 1969), I don’t believe that they even had metal detectors at airports yet, and the idea of an Islamo-suicide bomber would not have been anywhere on the radar screen.

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  5. Perhaps it is indeed the case that western nations may have to go "out" and root out terrorism. In my view though, this approach plays "right" into extremist hands. It hands everything to them on a plate, and makes their job "so" much easier to do, in convincing locals that their nations are under attack by infidel crusaders hoping to wipe out Islam. Because their whole thing is "They attack us, and we are justified in doing the most horrid things to them.". Afterall, defence of your own nation (and the entire Islamic community) is sanctioned in the Quran, and no matter how bloody that gets, it gets a green light. As you frequently point out on your Blog, these guys are masters of propaganda on their local TV, radio, publications. Our attempts to pre-emptive strike against nations we suspect support terrorism, makes its way to the programs that teach children that "there is your enemy. right there. See those dead babys". What they see, is carefully selected footage,opinions,and discussions which make it look as if it is indeed the case that the U.S or Britain are not "defending" themselves, but are just out to destroy Islamic nations bit by bit. Internal propaganda will always be much more powerful and influential than any outside attempts to convince otherwise.

    The other danger is that our nations simply get bogged down for years trying to keep order in nations where sectarian violence erupts after the years of dictatorship keeping those religious sects and their age old feuds,under lock and key. I personally don't feel that some Islamic nations are ready for what we term "Democracy" and "Freedom". We have seen what happens when the Palestinians chose. They chose Hamas. What is there to stop Iraqis voting in a hardline Religious Fundamentalist to the throne in a few years time, after all the hell that happened in Iraq? With the resentment at an all time high in Iraq, it is a risk.

    Even the Taliban are re-emerging in Afghanistan because they can tell the locals that they are under attack from an occupying power. When in our attempts to root out Taliban, civilians end up dead, their job gets so much easier. When poppy fields (often the only source of income in some areas) are set alight by coalition troops, and the cash which was promised in return as compensation doesn't materialize, it gives Taliban propaganda what it wants. If there is one thing Afghans are proud of, it is its history of defying those who try to conquer.

    Once hated, the Taliban are now getting sympathy again because the nation has now been left to a band of European peacekeepers for the most part, and the promises of reconstruction and security proved partly empty. When I visited the country 3 years ago, that was the major concern and anger of Afghans.

    All of them missed the security which the Taliban had brought (and it did bring, albeit with an almighty iron fist). I can tell you that the only secure place in that country in 2003, was Kabul. Everywhere else, was like the wild west. And now not even Kabul is safe. The west now has to deal with a war on two (or more) fronts.

    Is all this the best way to "protect" our nations? I'm not so sure it is. Anger against the west appears to be on the rise now in the middle east and central asia. America may not have been attacked since 9/11. But Britain,Madrid,Bali ,Turkey,and Jordan have. It is probably just the beginning as the idea that the "Crusader is on the march" seeps further and further into the Islamic psyche. I once read the text of an interview a Pakistani journalist made in 1999 with OBL.

    In it, Bin Laden said that if he manages to drag the U.S into a middle eastern conflict, then he will have achieved what he wanted. America,Britain,and other nations took the bait and did what he predicted. Went in all guns blazing.

    Some of the attacks against western interests would occur anyway, that is true. Because some of these guys are "pro-active" in their own way. But do we not make it so much more complex and harder for ourselves than it needs to be, by going around trying to re-shape the entire Islamic world in 'our' image?

    We cannot deny that many of those who have been attacking western interests worldwide "since" Afghanistan 2001 and Iraq 2003, have been moved to do so because of those attempts. We cannot deny that, because in their martyr videos many of them they clearly state that is the reason for their actions.

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