Sunday, September 4, 2011

Lives in the Balance by Jackson Browne

Dear friends,
Jackson Browne wrote this song in 1986, the year the Reagan Administration bombed Tripoli. I986 was also the same year that "Contra-gate" became a public scandal in which the CIA was exposed for selling arms to Iran to fund the contra -war in Nicaragua.

In 1979, the Sandinista National Liberation Front over threw the US backed dictator Samoza. Over the next decade, the Carter and Reagan Administrations sought to bring down the popular socialist movement, which introduced reforms which benefit the ordinary peasanst and workers of Nicaragua, including land reforms, health care and education. In 1981, a US State Department insider boasted that the Reagan Administration would "turn Nicaragua into the Albania of Central America" - that is, poor, isolated and politically radical - so that the Sandinista dream of creating a new, more exemplary political mode of social equality for Latin America would be in ruins.

1986 also marked the midpoint of the El Salvador civil war, which was feuled by the US government funding the military junta to the tune of $7billion over 10 years.

Browne's song could equally as well have been written about the Bush or Obama administrations and its invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan and its intervention into the Palestine-Israel conflict.

Browne's song, unfortunately, remains today as current as ever...

In solidarity, Kim

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