▶ On the Illusion of Nationalism via
Update: May 24, 2014
First Posted: Feb. 14, 2012
Nationalism is like the inflated ego to the personality in relation to the actual existence of a sovereign nation. It tends to be a mere mirage.
If we wake up and overcome any denial of connected reality we can see that the modern world today is under the control and dominion of the Amerikan Empire. Under the Amerikan Empire there are dominated territories or colonies and neo-colonies, not sovereign independent nations. Any valid claim to independent nationhood under the power of an Empire is an illusion. Empire precludes nationhood. Under corporate capitalism the USA itself is no longer a free independent nation as commonly understood. It is an internal colony and its subjects are kept hypnotized and have been fed a false version of reality by the government, corporate media and decades of systematic fascist propaganda. The continental United States is homebase for the Amerikan Empire.
We will examine what a nation is in terms of being an objective nation-state, not only a subjective ‘national consciousness’.
We need to begin with a clear functional definition of what a nation is:
na•tion noun \ˈnā-shən\
Definition of NATION
1a (1) : nationality 5a (2) : a politically organized nationality (3) : a non-Jewish nationality b : a community of people composed of one or more nationalities and possessing a more or less defined territory and government c : a territorial division containing a body of people of one or more nationalities and usually characterized by relatively large size and independent status
2 archaic: group, aggregation 3 a tribe or federation of tribes (as of American Indians)
Origin of NATION: Middle English nacioun, from Anglo-French naciun, from Latin nation-, natio birth, race, nation, from nasci to be born; akin to Latin gignere to beget — more at kin First Known Use: 14th century
Related to NATION: Synonyms: commonwealth, country, land, sovereignty (also sovranty), state
To lay a valid claim to nationhood a nation must meet certain objective criteria. You do not create a nation by issuing a grandiose manifesto nor with a subjective mass state of mind that does not reflect objective reality. A true nation must be more than merely the collective belief in the ideal of a nation by a group of believers floating in consciousness. It must exist here now in connected reality.
Among the criteria of a true nation is:
1. A sovereign independent state that has control and full dominion over a designed land area with guarded borders.
2. A central administrative apparatus that governs the nation on a day-to-day basis, enforces laws and proclaims official policies.
3. A mobilized army composed of a group of armed men capable of defending the territorial integrity of a nation, including its borders.
Even the UN itself is not what its name proclaims. It is not a united set of nations working together for the good of all its members. Official U.N. Representatives with little flags in front of them seated at the United Nations do not truly represent free sovereign nations. You cannot have a true nation if you are under the control of any foreign power, such as, the Amerikan Empire. If a large community is still a territory subject to the dictates of a ruling Empire it is not a true nation!
The Black Liberation Movement went through its Black Nationalist stage. When the former Black Panther Party was around Black consciousness evolved from Black revolutionary nationalism into an embracing revolutionary internationalism.
However, internationalism is still not accurate as there are no nations, thus, how can there be a genuine internationalism? Brother Huey P. Newton advanced the bold concept of revolutionary intercommuanlism in recognition of countries as a diverse scattered collection of communities.
In old Chicano Movement got hung up on Chicano cultural nationalism from the late 60s and its growth was retarded. You do not show proof of nationhood by murals and cultural artifacts. Its leaders failed to take the leap forward from a narrow nationalism up to at least a revolutionary internationalism on a global scale. No wonder why they were not able to fire the imagination of the Chicano masses in this new Millennium. Even the term Chicano does not include many Latinos who do not consider themselves as Chicanos and may self-identify as Cubans, Puerto Ricans or another form of nationality.
How can we unite without a common mutual identity? We need to raise our collective consciousness and advance beyond all forms of cultural nationalism in order to embrace the collective Global Liberation Movement of all who fight against state tyranny, fascist injustice and the misery of poverty.
Definition of NATIONALISM na•tion•al•ism noun \ˈnash-nə-ˌli-zəm, ˈna-shə-nə-ˌli-zəm\
1: loyalty and devotion to a nation; especially : a sense of national consciousness exalting one nation above all others and placing primary emphasis on promotion of its culture and interests as opposed to those of other nations or supranational groups
2: a nationalist movement or government
Meaning: 1 : a feeling that people have of being loyal to and proud of their country often with the belief that it is better and more important than other countries ▪ The war was caused by nationalism and greed. —compare patriotism
2: a desire by a large group of people (such as people who share the same culture, history, language, etc.) to form a separate and independent nation of their own ▪ Scottish nationalism Examples of NATIONALISM 1. The war was caused by nationalism and greed. 2. Nazism’s almost epic nationalism appealed to downtrodden Germans still suffering the humiliation of being defeated in World War I.
First Known Use of NATIONALISM 1844 Related to NATIONALISM
Synonyms: jingoism, chauvinism, superpatriotism
“Fascism is a form of authoritarian civic nationalism which stresses absolute loyalty and obedience to the state, whose purpose is to serve the interests of its nation alone.”
Amerikan Nationalism today is similar to Nazi Germany nationalism during the height of the Third Reich. Many White people in Amerika still think they are superior to non-White people. Many of the Founding Fathers of Amerika were slavemasters and did not oppose Black slavery. Amerika has the false belief that it is divinely ordained by Manifest Destiny. It now boasts of an arrogant superior Amerikan exceptionalism. Amerika does not want to remember the genocide of the original indigenous native people of Aztlán; the Black slave trade; the grand theft of the U.S. southwest; the internment and relocation of 110,000 Japanese inside the United States during WWII, that did not happen to German-Americans; built-in institutionalized racism and other historical atrocities.
The U.S.A. is still a country dominated by a White racist culture no matter how you look at and shake the Amerikan kaleidoscope. Now the so-called racial minorities are becoming the majority over White Amerikans, though many non-Whites are ‘wanna-be-Whites’. Karma always catches up!
In connected reality the Amerikan Empire is the supreme empire of the whole world (though the Chinese Empire has the second largest economy and is a great competitor with its own corporate capitalist economy).
The Amerikan Empire protects global corporate capitalism with the prestige of power of the U.S. government; the mass psychology of the corporate media and the greatest military machine in all of man’s history (the U.S. Armed Forces and its unofficial paid killer-soldiers). It is a shady shape shifter than changes shape in accordance with a given local situation. It imposes imperialism abroad with its foreign policies, maintains fascism on the domestic front and can carry out black ops worldwide with impunity, including secret rendition into invisible prisons for those deemed to be Enemies of the Empire.
As a result, all states under its control are not true independent sovereign nations once we look deeper than superficial manifestations of nationhood ~ beneath the flag waving, patriotic fervor and the psycho-social sense of being a ‘nation’ of people. Open your mind and heart to the truth.
We must admit that the USA is now under the control of the Amerkan Empire: its super-rich corporate ruling class, fascist police state and corporate mass media that molds and shapes public opinion. It is an Evil Empire!
As an authoritarian regime the Amerikan Empire has direct and/or indirect control over other territories under its rule (known before as colonies or neo-colonies). Amerika has failed to live up to the promise of the American Dream. Hard work under corporate capitalism is not enough. There is no liberty and justice for all. The American Dream has turned into the ugly reality of the Amerikan Nightmare.
Amerikan elections and electoral politics in general is a rotten to the core corrupt system under the phony illusion of Amerikan democracy. It is a super-rich White man’s game. Nowadays political candidates must have millions of dollars to run for high public office and if they win they end up beholden to the financial interests of corporate stakeholders. Traditional Amerikan electoral politics manufactures the illusion of choice. It is now dominated by two major corporate-controlled parties: the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. In collusion together these two dominant political parties constitute one huge two headed monster. The system is broken from the bottom up.
For example, there is no direct election for the President and Vice-President because of the Electoral College. It is so complicated that most ordinary citizens have given up trying to understand its hustles and complications.
A true democracy requires the mass education and active participation of the people; government financing of political campaigns; set campaign spending limits and direct elections by the people. The majority rules in a true democracy. Anyone who can win the votes of the people should be able to aspire to any political office with a fair chance of winning in free, open democratic elections. As a result of the corruption of electoral politics, many potential voters do not even bother to register to vote. If they do register to vote many do not go out and vote on Election Day because they feel that their one vote will not make a real difference anyway.
People are now disgusted and turned off by politics and ‘business as usual’. Politics is now a dirty word. The struggles around electoral politics can still be used as a major tactic for progressive forces and raising consciousness. No relevant tactic can be discounted that can be useful to our liberating efforts, especially in terms of mass education and direct interaction with the people.
A true legitimate democracy must be a participatory democracy, its people must be involved in the politics of the day on an on-going basis because they believe in the merits of a people’s democracy. We must redefine our usual definitions. A new kind of politics should be about addressing the people’s true survival interests, meeting the survival needs of the people and making our dreams come true, not the politics of corporate corruption.
Amerika, masquerading as the U.S.A., due to its historical and continuing inhumane crimes against humanity, is in no position to act as if it has any true moral ethical authority over all others on the planet. Amerika has more prisons and jails than all other countries combined. Our Brother Leonard Peltier is still a Prisoner of War caged without justice. The Amerikan people are seen as arrogant, racist and naive by the majority of the world’s peoples ~ the so-called Third World of Latin America, Asia and Africa. Actually we know there is only one world and one species of human life upon Earth. U.S. citizens think the term ‘America’ only applies to citizens of the United States and forget about the millions of other people who live in the Americas in the rest of the Western Hemisphere. Its confused people are now lost in the illusion of Amerikan nationalism. We are still under the reign of the designs of the Amerikan Empire. Many millions of Amerikans suffer in the stifling misery of poverty. We need a massive government bailout of decent jobs, affordable housing and safe neighborhoods, not bailouts for Wall Street and foreign wars costing trillions of dollars.
Summary: A true humane global democracy means fairness, justice and dignity for all people. We must come together as global humane beings, equals with equal humane rights, no matter where we are from. Let us embrace all the family of humanity as one people of one planet and help save Mother Earth.
Be concerned with the basic survival interests and spiritual needs of the vast majority, yet pay equal heed to all minorities, including the LGBT community. We all have legitimate humane rights. No one is born illegitimate. No one is illegal. We all have a right to exist. We all have a right to be here now. Leave no one out. Welcome all. Abandon your borders. Build bridges, not walls.
Make a conscious effort to love all people and hate no mortal. Hate the evils of great sins, not sinners. Be a better being than whom you deem to be your enemy. Let us discuss our many differences, get involved with constructive debate, engage in meaningful dialogue and work together in an honest attempt to create a Peaceful Revolution inside the United States.
Let us advocate peaceful revolutions throughout the world as far as possible before we turn to the violence of guerrilla warfare out of sheer desperation and hopelessness.
Seeing the big picture we must have the vision to create a global People’s Democracy that is humane in its essence without dogma, not stuck in the old guard ideology of Marxism. We must unite and oppose corporate capitalism as it sucks the lifeblood out of people. We need a new world where there is truly liberty and justice for all of us upon Mother Earth.
In the spirit of humanity let us blossom in our spiritual evolution together. Let go of the illusion of nationalism. Be one for all and all for one. Be equal among all people with a humane loving compassion for all who suffer in the misery of poverty. As an endangered species we need to take our responsibility as creatures of Creator source seriously. We must come together or perish.
“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” ~President Kennedy
John F. Kennedy: Address on the first Anniversary of the Alliance for Progress. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=9100
The Pitfalls of National Consciousness by Frantz Fanon:
FRANTZ FANON – The Wretched of the Earth.pdf
Message to the Tricontinental: by Comandante Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara First Published: Havana, April 16, 1967.
Venceremos! We will win!
Peter S. López aka @Peta_de_Aztlan
Sacramento, California, Aztlán