As President Trump escalated his attacks and threats against the Central American migrant caravans making their way to the U.S.-Mexico border, the Trump administration unveiled new sanctions against Venezuela and Cuba on Thursday. National security adviser John Bolton declared Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua to be part of a “troika of tyranny” and a “triangle of terror.” We speak with world-renowned professor, linguist and dissident Noam Chomsky about U.S. foreign policy in Central America. He joins us in Tucson, Arizona, where he now teaches at the University of Arizona. Chomsky is also institute professor emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has taught for 50 years.
AMY GOODMAN: As President Trump escalates his attacks and threats against the Central American migrant caravans making their way to the U.S.-Mexico border, the Trump administration unveiled new sanctions against Venezuela and Cuba Thursday. National security adviser John Bolton declared Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua to be part of a “troika of tyranny” and a “triangle of terror.” Bolton was speaking in Miami, Florida.
JOHN BOLTON: We will no longer appease dictators and despots near our shores. We will not reward firing squads, torturers and murderers. We will champion the independence and liberty of our neighbors. And this president and his entire administration will stand with the freedom fighters. The troika of tyranny in this hemisphere—Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua—has finally met its match.
AMY GOODMAN: As John Bolton spoke in Miami on Thursday, Democracy Now!‘s Nermeen Shaikh and I spoke with the world-renowned professor, linguist and dissident Noam Chomsky. He joined us from Tucson, Arizona, where he now teaches at the University of Arizona. Noam Chomsky is also institute professor emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he’s taught for more than 50 years. His recent books include Global Discontents: Conversations on the Rising Threats to Democracy, Who Rules the World? and Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power.
Every November, when Thanksgiving is scheduled, I think of the People of the First Nations (so-called Native Americans), and wonder about their mixed feelings for a holiday that celebrates their enormous generosity as well as their near-total destruction.
What do they have to be thankful of?
U.S. President Abraham Lincoln declared the first such holiday in 1863, and American popular culture has tied it to a meal between Aboriginal people and Europeans upon their arrival on this continent.
In fact, when the Spanish reached South America, and the English reached North America, they soon embarked on dual extermination campaigns, which led to holocausts of Indian nations, both north and south.
Their arrivals spelled the doom of hundreds of millions of people, hunted, starved, diseased and enslaved.
To them, hell had a white face.
They made treaty after treaty with the Indians, but the palefaces broke every one.
For the Conquistadors, Native peoples served as enslaved workers who worked themselves to death to mine silver and gold. To the Anglos, they were superfluous – it was Indian land they hungered for – and they got it – by hook or crook.
Caught between these two great, ravenous forces, there was little they could do, but fight, but Europe flooded the Americas with immigrants, and sheer numbers told the tale of woe.
When first they arrived, European settlements were places of disease, hunger and pitiless death. First Nations folk fed them, taught them planting and healed the, with herbal treatments. The colonists repaid them with unremitting war, smallpox used as biological weapons, land theft and slaughter.
Thanksgiving may be a holiday, but it ain’t a holy day.
It should be a day to be remembered, in remembrance of the First Nations that peopled this land, for tens of thousands of years.