Posted by parhad on July 12, 2001 at 17:27:01:


In Reply to: Touche! posted by Melody on July 12, 2001 at 16:20:35:


I was hoping you would ask. The honest answer is, "I don't know". But honesty isn't always the best policy.


The Elian Gonzalez case was an eye-opener for me. I'd been saying before that we needed more public exposure, that we had to educate the general public about us...that was the basic reason for the monuments.


Then the little Cuban boy washed ashore and something clicked. remember how powerful the Cuban exile community in Florida has been in goading on US policy towards Cuba and Castro. They've managed together to scare the pants off Americans that Castro and communism will be arriving here any day, that Castro was a danger to the US and the rest of it. This is pure bunk, like Saddam being a "madman". The US has had its naval Base on Guantanimo since before the revolution in Cuba, yet Castro...for all his "Yanqui Go Home" rehetoric has never dared attack a military base right there on one end of his island-nation.


Yet so convinced is the American public of this 'communist' threat that they even went along with Reagan's preposterous raid on, Jeez...I can't even remember the name of that tiny island in the Carribean where rich dumb American kids go to "finish" medical school..of YEAH, Grenada. Uncle Sam managed to kill twenty or so mental patients as well as a few of his own soldiers in what had to be the biggest fiasco ever unknown. Point is...the public buys all of this because of years of propaganda and misinformation that has saturated the poly-saturated minds of Mr and Mrs and Ms America.


When Elian's relatives from Hell tried everything in their power to keep him here, it was a goldmine for the exile community...a chance to show how much happier every kid would be who could trade his father in for toys and an exclusive visit to DisneyWorld. It almost worked.


Thirty years ago it WOULD have. The same Supreme Court which sent Japanese Americans to concentration camps...later reversing itself...can do anything the public demands. To their credit the legal system and Immigration kept to the letter of the Law and the relatives were ordered to turn the boy over. They didn't and were able to keep Janet Reno, the country's most powerful Legal Officer...who had just ordered a strike in Waco where 90 innocent people were killed...they kept her on her kness pleading with them to "please obey the Law".


Not she, not the courts, not Immigration dared to go against the public's perceived notion that Castro was evil and the Cubans of Miami "good". There things stood, at stalemate because the polls showed the American public uncertain of which place was better for the boy...Laws be damned.


At last the relatives "blinked"...overconfident, they taped Elian wagging a finger at his father..."demanding" he be left in America where life is great. As if by magic, the Public beast woke up, realized the boy was being brainwashed...understanding finally that no boy of six should be allowed to determine his fate..and that THIS boy had a powerful and unscrupulous gaggle of self-serving politicians and "uncles" behind him bent on using him to score more anti-Castro points.


Janet must have been watching all indicators for the next polls showed a shift in public opinion away from the relatives and towards the "law". BOOM...Federal marshalls swarmed down on the place and overreacted where they'd done nothing for weeks, snatching the terrified boy away and returning him to where he belonged. It was as if people suddenly awakened from a propaganda fueled nightmare. We still haven't normalized relations with Castro, but the day will come.


The lesson for us in all of this is that politicians...those people OUR people are dumb enough to think love them IN Spite of the money they give...can do anything for us...that and any of the usual suspects who promise power and influence. Not all the wealth and majesty and might and main of the US government, the strongest on earth, dared move against the common will...against the people who ELECT and PAY for that government. When the public beast demanded something, they all jumped to attention.


It is that "public will" we have to play to. We must tell our story and become a player on the field of those whom the people of this country, including ourselves, hold dear enough for whatever reason, to protect in some small measure. The Hutus and Rwandans and Tutsis and Kurds learned this valuable lesson...go for public opinion and the rest will fall into place, neglect that, and you don't exist.


If we can get the attention and the interest of the American people, we'll have our best shot...for if anyone ever needed powerful friends, ON THIS EARTH, it is us.  Each of us knows from personal experience how compelling and fascinating our story is when told to those who previously knew little or nothing of us. I've seen with just the reception these monuments have received that we have our greatest asset in the one thing we seem to desperately neglect. As Christians we hardly matter to anyone...there are plenty of those...but there are NO Assyrians except us! This is what the church and our "leaders" DON'T want us to do for we'll swim away from them.


It's a good start, I think.