We’re Not Better

Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff recessed the presidential impeachment hearings with the comment, “We are better than that.” He was referring to President Donald Trump’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate his political rival by withholding military aid and a White House meeting until his personal political agenda was met.

If we are better than that, why are most members of Congress silent when Israel assassinates Palestinians using weapons purchased with U.S. taxpayer dollars? And silent as it continues illegal settlement activities in violation of U.S. and international laws? And complicit as Israel interferes in our politics?

If we are better than that, why does the U.S. support corrupt, authoritarian regimes in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, among others? And why does it enable Saudi Arabia to kill innocent Yemenis?

If we are better than that, why did politicians manufacture lies that led to devastating wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and why are those war criminals free?

If we are better than that, why weren’t politicians responsible for overthrowing the governments of Iran, Chile, Guatemala, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Libya and others brought to justice?

If we are better than that, why would Joe Biden ignore the fact that his son sat on the board of a corrupt Ukrainian energy company during his tenure as vice president?

If we were better than that, would Trump have been elected president? His presidency is the legacy of a corrupt system, corrupt policies and abuse of power, and punishment for America’s detachment from moral vigilance.

M. Reza Behnam