One year after Barack Obama’s inauguration as president of the United States the hope his candidacy raised has now given way to dispondency. There is nothing more natural. Of course the election of a "non-white" president in a country where the notion of race is, in Studs Terkel’s words, is a "national obsession" was greeted by virtually everyone as a step forward. But the chickens always come home to roost, and in this case the illusions of change have been so short-lived that it is almost cause for optimism.
In spite of Obama’s attempts to overcome the scepticism inspired by the contrast between his flights of oratory and his pusillaminous decision-making, his deeds speak for themselves: the promises will not be fulfilled. Obama’s eyes have been on the prize, but the prizes are only for himself.
But all this must be placed in large perspective. Obama is only the latest example in forty years of disappointment in African-American politicians who have been elected or appointed to high office. The conclusion that should be drawn is that there is no "color" or "gender line" with respect to political ambition and false promises.
The beginning of the year 2010 is a time of memorial celebrations for Martin Luther King Jr., assassinated in April 1968. It is also exactly 45 years since Malcolm X was assassinated (in February 1965) also with the connivance of the FBI. These were men who spoke out, but more importantly ACTED against racism and imperialism.
Today, we should do everything necessary to communicate one essential message: the government of the United States directly represents capitalist interests and a system of imperial control for which Obama is the chief political spokeperson. However well-meaning and intelligent the man may be, he cannot be expected to modify a system dependant upon the continued domination and exploitation of the world’s people and the material resources over which only they should have control.
This section’s articles
JAYYOUS, West Bank — Upon assuming office earlier this year, President Barack Obama insisted that as part of the peace process in the Middle East the Israeli government would have to cease construction of settlements in the Palestinian West Bank. Such pressure on the Israeli leadership, (...)
cc US ArmyConcerned over the supply of oil to the US and a supposed need to continue the global ’War on Terror’, President Barack Obama has essentially maintained the militarised approach to Africa that was the hallmark of his immediate predecessors George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, writes Daniel (...)
Obama’s health plan is hardly an improvement over what now exists. Indeed it has some worse aspects: while on the plus side it obliges insurance companies to insure everyone despite preexisting medical conditions, it also requires all but the very poor to buy their own health insurance—which is a (...)
An initiative for a start a new truck drivers’ Union was launched by the WAC - Maan association on Saturday 14 November 2009 at a conference in its offices in Tel Aviv. The goal of the conference was defined as the initiation of debate and voicing of ideas for the establishment of a new drivers’ (...)
The workers’ organization WAC-MA’AN ran a tour of agricultural farms in the Sharon Plain on the 3rd December, to make a stand regarding the state of employment among farm workers. The tour was held against the backdrop of recent farmers’ protests, demanding the government import more manpower from (...)