Today, I read that the United States government once gave regular intelligence updates to Saddam so that he could use chemical weapons against Iranian troops who were threatening to break his defensive line.
Yesterday, I read that the US, UK, and New Zealand governments, among many others, have been illegally spying on their own citizens, violating the privacy of millions, for years.
Last week, I read that the Israeli government sometimes sprays Palestinian villages with a chemical called skunk designed to make them and their houses stink in a form of pointless collective punishment.
Last month, I read that the UK government held thousands of Kenyans in concentration camps and tortured them in the most horrible ways when it was fighting the Mau Mau insurgency.
Last year, I read that Coalition troops in Afghanistan and Iraq were committing war crimes on a regular basis, murdering civilians for sport and torturing prisoners on orders; and that the US and UK governments had engineered a coup in 1953 to overthrow a popularly elected government in Iran; and that dozens of countries assisted the US in its illegal rendition programme after 9/11; and that the US has killed thousands of people in extrajudicial drones strikes across the Middle East, including many children… Actually, I have since lost count of how many stories like these I’ve read in the last few years. It is a litany of shame added to every day.
Today, I read that the UK government wants to make it a criminal offence for people of conscience to leak the truth about the crimes their government commits. Yesterday, the US jailed a man for 35 years when he exposed his government’s crimes.
Today, I concluded that what our governments really desire is the freedom to gas people in foreign lands, torture them in dark cells and break the law with abandon, and then suppress the truth and punish anyone who exposes their crimes. Today, I have the whistleblower blues.