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477-3651 E 1117 West 5th Street Austin, Texas 78703 REALTOR Representing all types of properties In Austin and Central Texas interesting & unusual property a specialty. Printers Stationers Mailers Typesetters High Speed Web Offset Publication Press Counseling Designing Copy Writing Editing Trade Computer Sales and Services Complete Computer Data Processing Services *FUTURA LABELN COUNCIL PRESS UNIO AUSTIN TEXAS 512/442-7836 1714 South Congress P.O. Box 3485 Austin, Texas 78764 7 TRADES UST04 TIRO’S LED PR IN r, N0 N President and us, the people, for if the members of the Congress do not hold the President to the limitation that he cannot wage war without a declaration of war by Congress, what does hold him, what binds him, what controls him? Nothingyet he acts in our names! This is not treason in the ordinary sense, but it is treason to the Constitution, it is treason to the democracy. WE HAD BETTER pay closer attention now to Reagan’s verbal justifications of his aggression than we did when President Johnson led us, step by step, into the Vietnam war. What Reagan is saying about Libya eerily suggests what Johnson said as he escalated U.S. involvement in Vietnam in the spring and early summer of 1965. Despite the figleaf now about self-defense, Reagan’s essential rationale is retaliation. They hit us in West Germany; we hit back at Tripoli and Benghazi. Permit me to quote from my 1982 book about Johnson, The Politician: The United States lurched into the Vietnam war in 1964 and 1965 like a feudist in the hills of Kentucky and West Virginia or the river valleys of Texas. The President from Texis, sensing that something in the American character would require that he be backed up, made his first two lunges in the name of retaliation. We ‘struck back,’ we ‘retaliated,’ and the ethic of revenge is so deep in the instincts and memories of the people that the immorality of the greatest power on earth bombing a tiny country with no air force of its own on the basis of retaliation has escaped most of us to this day. [In the Gulf of Tonkin episode, Johnson] ordered retaliatory depots for the first time the United States bombed North Vietnam on the basis of retaliation. “. . . when they fired on our flag,” Johnson said, “we retaliated in kind. . . . But we didn’t drop a bunch of bombs on civilian women and children in an act of desperation or in a thoughtless moment.” That was to come -later, in many thoughtful moments. In February, 1965, when Johnson again wanted public support for bombing Vietnam, again he fell back on the devil’s brew of the feud. Viet Cong guerillas attacked an American installation -at Pleiku north of Saigon, killing seven U.S. soldiers and wounding more than a hundred. When Johnson bombed North Vietnam then . . . he said it was retaliation for Pleiku; his Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara, said “retaliatory” three times in his press conference about it. Congress and most of the people accepted it. The New York Times accepted it. . . . Texas papers were exultant. . . . For a short while thereafter the government maintained that all we were doing was retaliating some more for further wrongs done us, in kind and in proportion. But at the end of that month, having involved the people emotionally in his war-making, Johnson cast off the retaliator’s righteousness and announced continuous bombings against North Vietnam. Then he sent troops, and the United States was at war without a declaration by Congress. The excuse, having done its psychological work, was forgotten. The American people, who normally would have been stunned and confused by their government suddenly bombing a small country ten thousand miles away, had been tricked through the instinct of revenge into accepting it.” In terrorism, Reagan and his men have an unlimited source of justifications for retaliatory attacks. Allege Libya did this; take that! Allege Nicaragua did this; take that! And then, as tit-for-tat widens into a general war, the American people will gradually realize that they have been had, that their patriotism and their high capacity for moral outrage have again been used to trick them into paying for, tolerating, and fighting in wars that have never been properly declared in their name by the Congress. No! Stand alert, citizens! As the President reaches to hook into our noses the ring of retaliation, tear that ring from his hands, call the lie as it’s happening! If it’s war he wants, let him ask the Congress to declare it, let there be full and robust debate, and then let the Congress, if it will, declare that 240 million Americans are at war with the Arab nation of Libya and its three million people. Until complete personal and business insurance ALICE ANDERSON AGENCY 808-A East 46th P.O. Box 4666, Austin 78765 Our outstanding lunches have been an Austin must for eleven years. Our international grocery features food and from around the world. Come see us at our new home. Oommon MlinISET 1610 San Antonio Austin, Tex. 78701 472-1900 Hours: lam-7pm Mon to Fri . and Sam-6pm on Sat THE TEXAS OBSERVER 7