Posted on | November 2, 2007 | No Comments
Eastern Establishment, silver spoon-sucking twits. DC is full of people who are quite full of themselves.
Ivy Leaguers, Sorority Sycophants, Frat Brats, people who come from “Old Money,” people with last names for first names–like Tucker, Armstrong, Winslow, Graydon and Taylor, and those who “summer” on “the Cape” or Martha’s Vineyard.
They make up the core power population of this slimy city called DC. The elites who control this country as if it were a country club. The elites who make it such an intolerable place to a working class, state school-educated egalitarianist from California, a.k.a. me.
Now, DC is full of plum gigs. The trough of taxpayer money feeds a huge population of plum gigsters. One of the plumest of government gigs is at the State Department.
Travel around the world. Paid.
Living expenses abroad. Paid. Parties and schmoozing in exotic places.
Generally cushy work, that stuff is…with more perks than a coffee pot at an all-night truck stop.
And it’s those Eastern Establishment-types, and those who oh-so desperately want to be like them, who make up a huge proportion of the “diplomats” and ambassadorial staff for the US State Department.
Now, it turns out, that “State,” as the State Dept is called inside the Beltway, is having problems staffing the world’s largest US Embassy…a $592 Billion compound right in the heart of Baghdad.
This monument to American Empire, a city within a city…a Green Zone within a Green Zone, is the centerpiece acheivement of the Iraq invasion/takeover. It is the place from which the Neo-Cons hope to control the Middle East. From which US corporations will spread their influence and collect contracts, no-bid or otherwise.
But those State Department sycohants who did very little to stop then Sec’y of State Colin Powell during the lead-up to the invasion…who spend their lives representing American political and economic power around the globe, promoting “American Interests” like global corporations and oil companies and, in general, try to keep the world under the thumb of American Empire…are suddenly being forced to accept assignments in Baghdad.
That’s right Buffy and Tad and Graydon and Sinclair, we’re not talking Paris or Hong Kong or Prague or Pretoria…we’re talking the centerpiece of Ameircan Empire…an empire you signed up to represent when you passed a ridiculous Foreign Service Exam that asks questions about Opera and Medieval Architecture and Supply-side Economics (which, by design, selects out many of those who don’t come from money or prep schools). The empire you studied at high-priced Foreign Service schools located around the Ivy League.
The empire you and your family, most likely, have profited from for years.
Now, you gotta go into the heart of darkness, you scum-sucking elitist bastards and bitches.
And they are pissed.
Because they are afraid.
In what has become a big story here inside the Beltway, these elistists are being forced to accept a term of service in Baghdad because no one will go willingly. The embassy is under-staffed.
At a big meeting at State, career dipolmats and envoys and such screamed and hollered about the forced duty.
According to the Washington Post article:
Service in Iraq is “a potential death sentence,” said one man who identified himself as a 46-year Foreign Service veteran. “Any other embassy in the world would be closed by now,” he said to sustained applause.
So, these hyper-privileged people are boo-hooing because they’re are being forced to accept a dangeous assignment in Iraq.
Why is this so infuriating?
Because tens of thousands of working class and working poor people have been “forced” to serve in Iraq…not once, not twice…but three times.
And talk about a death sentence…how many envoys do you see on those lists of people killed in Iraq? Not nearly as many as the three-plus thousand soliders, or the over twenty thousand wounded.
And these are kids and older Guardsmen and Reservists who get thrown out into heat of the desert and a crossfire, but not inside the walls of a Green Zone compound. And this is no cardboard cut-out…the Embassy.
Check out this description:
Located on a on a 104-acre site on the Tigris river where U.S. and coalition authorities are headquartered, the high-tech palatial compound is envisioned as a totally self-sustaining cluster of 21 buildings reinforced to 2.5 times usual standards. Some walls as said to be 15 feet thick or more. The installation is touted as not only the largest, but the most secure diplomatic embassy in the world.
The 1,000 or more U.S. government officials calling the new compound home will have access to a gym, swimming pool, barber and beauty shops, a food court and a commissary. In addition to the main embassy buildings, there will be a large-scale US Marine barracks, a school, locker rooms, a warehouse, a vehicle maintenance garage, and six apartment buildings with a total of 619 one-bedroom units. Water, electricity and sewage treatment plants will all be independent from Baghdad’s city utilities. The total site will be two-thirds the area of the National Mall in Washington, DC.
Sounds like a death sentence, doesn’t it?
It’s just like the death sentence of having to patrol around ethnically warring neighborhoods without propoper body armor or properly armored Humvees, huh?
But wait, there is more from the Post article:
One woman said she returned from a tour in Basra with post-traumatic stress disorder only to find that the State Department would not authorize medical treatment.
Awww, ain’t that just a shame? I mean, she was in the safest place in Iraq and came back with a little PTSD. And “State” is ignoring her?
Hmmmm, do you think she’s really going to have a hard time finding a doc to give her some happy pills? I mean, it’s not like she’s having to stay in a cockroach-infested, dilapidated apartment, fighting to re-learn how to walk on new, artificial legs.
And, believe me, the stories of troops coming home with PTSD after being in a firefight, seeing children blown to bits or run over by Humvees…seeing their buddies shot to death or their bodies demolished by a roadside bomb, sorta makes her PTSD seem a bit trivial. Particularly since the Veteran’s Administration is famous to delaying and underfunding treatment of injured and psychologically damaged grunts who actually have something to be freaked out about.
In the final analysis, the sickest part of this story is that those employees of State can, if they wish, just walk away.
They’ll be fine. They are highly educated and would be in demand by a number of multinational corporations. If they refuse to go the Iraq because it is a “death sentence,” they will not end up in the brig or in front of a court martial that might give them a dishonorable discharge that could make future employment difficult, at best.
No, Tad and Buffy have a choice. Have an education. Have options.
Meanwhile, Frank and John and Tina and Kelly have very little choice. Not only are they under one Iraq death sentence, they are going to get multiple sentences…sent back over and over again.
And if they refuse and make a stink in public…in front of their commanding officers or the media? Well, they get arrested or court martialed or discharged with a permanently blotted record.
Probably have little or no education…or the loss of any money they were promised for college (which is why so many are caught up in service in the first place…cannot afford the Ivy Leagues, just hope for enough to get into a State school).
Certainly, they don’t have have a trust fund or the comfort of coming from Old Money or having an old school buddy or sorority sister they can call to get a job.
Rather, they continue to do what they are required to do. To take the assignments they signed up for when they took the ASVAB, the military’s version of the Foreign Service Exam, which doesn’t select out anyone. Nope, it merely categorizes all those people who didn’t go to prepe school and puts them in jobs they have no choice but to accept.
Meanwhile, the elites who wrote the death sentence for our troops and the Iraq people can moan and groan about having to spend a tour of duty in a complex with a gym and swimming pool, and…in the meantime…dream about coming back to the USA after an assignment in Hotel Baghdad so they can spend a summer unwinding from all that PTSD on “the Cape.”