Reading the report that Obama would not meet the dying Mandela to satisfy a ‘photo opportunity’ produced a shiver of disgust. Mandela is one of the few world leaders who has inspired countless millions by his values. Mandela walked the walk.
Obama also inspired hope in countless millions that he too would be a force for good in the world. He talked the talk. Sadly his deeds have undermined his words. Listening to the reverential tone of the coverage of his African tour it is clear that the mainstream media have lost any trace of their critical faculties.
The abomination that is Guantanamo is still open.
Many innocent people have been killed by drone attacks authorised by Obama. The numbers are unclear because the US claim the victims are predominantly Taliban or terrorists when independent assessors claim over 90% are innocent people, frequently children. A man reported to be as smart as Obama is pursuing a policy which guarantees hundreds of recruits for every person killed. The only beneficiaries of this madness are the arms manufacturers. [Pause for thought]
He has even authorised the use of drone assassinations of US citizens – not just on foreign soil, but also in America – all without the due process of the law. [Pause for further thought]
The continuing revelations about the extent and scope of NSA snooping is further confirmation of just how dangerous the US government has become - with more than a little help from our GCHQ and political poodles. The fact that Obama justifies this with phrases such as ‘we all need to lose a little privacy to improve security’ shows how far he has fallen. Does he not recall the wise words of Benjamin Franklin? ‘A person who is prepared to lose some freedom in the name of security deserves neither.’
Finally, apply the ‘what would Mandela have done?’ approach to Guantanamo, Drones, circumventing the Rule of Law and state snooping.