This photo [below] was taken March 16, 1968 at My Lai. I arrived in country a year later on March 8, 1969, but of course had no idea of My Lai or any of the other massacres and atrocities occurring. Soon after arrival, however, I would witness the aftermath of massacres from the air, from 300 feet or less, totally wiping out inhabited, totally undefended fishing and farming villages burning many of the villagers to a crisp with napalm. Sometimes I feel as if I am still in shock, unable to share any expression that is able to convey the utter diabolical nature of it all, of history from our very beginnings. And yet I knew and was exposed to so little, just a taste.
One can easily imagine that the scene could have been one of thousands of similarly documented examples (if there had been cameras) of bestial behavior committed with impunity by US-Europeans starting in the 1600s, then continuing into the 1700s and 1800s against native Indigenous inhabitants stealing their land and lives. Of course, this genocide was followed by a second one of kidnapping Africans from their ancient communities to steal the labor (of those who survived) this crime against humanity. We are an entire nation of Eurocentrics built on subsidies of free land and labor, calling ourselves “exceptional” – in fact exceptionally evil.
Then the Manifest Destiny continued across the oceans as well as into Latin America, plundering villages in more than 100 nations around the world that peacefully existed but had the misfortune of being in the path of US imperial plunder stealing resources and labor to assure the comfortable materialist lives of the Eurocentrics as a few White men became rich, as they continue the pattern to this day to strive with great earnestness and deceit to preserve their patriarchal privileges. Since our Christian nation has committed these serial massacres for over 400 years with virtual total impunity, blessed by God (“God bless America”), it has become part of our DNA through epigenetic changes in the psyches and visceral/DNA bodies of more than 20 generations of US Americans who have never been held to account for our crimes against humanity and nature. We have become monsters as we drown ourselves in fantasy preserved by denial psychosis.
However, there is always Karma which has its ways, sooner or later, of bringing the consequences of this behavior home with a vengeance, like a searing toxic boomerang returning to its sender. Let us be thankful for Karma as the Universe’s correction mechanism for our species’ cancer on the Planet. Perhaps we might come to our senses as we are about to be struck by the lethal boomerang, but I am not counting on it. Meanwhile we must tell the truth as we see it and know it.