«Nem as brutalidades, nem as sevícias, nem as torturas me obrigaram alguma vez a pedir clemência, porque prefiro morrer de cabeça erguida, com fé inquebrantável e confiança profunda no destino do meu país, do que viver na submissão e no desprezo pelos princípios sagrados. A História dirá um dia a sua palavra; não a história que é ensinada nas Nações Unidas, em Washington, Paris ou Bruxelas, mas a que será ensinada nos países libertados do colonialismo e dos seus fantoches.»
As palavras são de Patrice Lumumba, herói da luta anticolonial e primeiro chefe do governo da República do Congo, antiga colónia belga que conquistou a independência a 30 de Junho de 1960.
Apenas dois meses depois, como veio a revelar uma comissão do Senado norte-americano em meados da década de setenta, a CIA organizou uma conspiração com militares golpistas comandados pelo coronel Mobutu com o «objectivo urgente e prioritário» de assassinar Lumumba, considerado «um perigo grave» para os EUA.
Mobutu viria a assumir mais tarde a liderança do país, rebaptizado como Zaire, implantando uma ditadura sangrenta onde reinou despoticamente até 1997, como um fantoche dos Estados Unidos e das potências ocidentais.
Lumumba foi preso em Novembro e barbaramente torturado e assassinado a 17 de Janeiro de 1961.
EUA: A governadora do Estado do Arizona, Jan Brewer, aprovou a criminalização dos imigrantes indocumentados naquela região fronteiriça com o México. Estima-se que em todo o território residam cerca de 460 mil pessoas nessas condições, a esmagadora maioria provenientes do país vizinho.
A norma que converte em delito a imigração ilegal permite que as autoridades detenham qualquer pessoa por simples «suspeita razoável» de que se encontre nessa condição.
A aprovação da legislação considerada persecutória está a levantar um coro de protestos. No dia em que subscreveu o diploma, Brewer enfrentou uma manifestação frente à sede do governo local.
Arizona has virtually criminalized “being” while brown. Its new racist laws require police to profile and stop anyone who “looks like” an undocumented immigrant. Even police chiefs across the country, who know they cannot police communities that won't talk to them, are denouncing this racist, unjust and downright foolish law.
«Ni brutalités, ni sévices, ni tortures ne m’ont jamais amené à demander la grâce, car je préfère mourir la tête haute, la foi inébranlable et la confiance profonde dans la destinée de mon pays, plutôt que vivre dans la soumission et le mépris des principes sacrés. L’histoire dira un jour son mot, mais ce ne sera pas l’histoire qu’on enseignera à Bruxelles, Washington, Paris ou aux Nations Unies, mais celle qu’on enseignera dans les pays affranchis du colonialisme et de ses fantoches.»
Obama parece condenado a falhar segunda vez a promessa de encerrar a prisão depois de o Congresso ter fechado a torneira dos dólares.
Barack Obama parece condenado a falhar segunda vez a promessa de fechar Guantánamo depois de o Congresso ter recusado à Administração o dinheiro necessário para comprar a nova prisão, no Ilinóis, para onde deviam ser transferidos os terroristas mais perigosos.
O Presidente dos EUA admitiu há um mês que não será possível encerrar o centro de terroristas na ilha de Cuba a 22 de Janeiro, como ele próprio ordenara no segundo dia do seu mandato. (...)
«Recent events have vividly reminded us that nations are not reducing but rather increasing their arsenals of weapons of mass destruction. The best brains in the highly developed nations of the world are devoted to military technology.
So man's proneness to engage in war is still a fact. But wisdom born of experience should tell us that war is obsolete. There may have been a time when war served as a negative good by preventing the spread and growth of an evil force, but the destructive power of modern weapons eliminated even the possibility that war may serve as a negative good. If we assume that life is worth living and that man has a right to survive, then we must find an alternative to war. In a day when vehicles hurtle through outer space and guided ballistic missiles carve highways of death through the stratosphere, no nation can claim victory in war. A so-called limited war will leave little more than a calamitous legacy of human suffering, political turmoil, and spiritual disillusionment. A world war - God forbid! - will leave only smoldering ashes as a mute testimony of a human race whose folly led inexorably to ultimate death. So if modern man continues to flirt unhesitatingly with war, he will transform his earthly habitat into an inferno such as even the mind of Dante could not imagine.
Therefore, I venture to suggest to all of you and all who hear and may eventually read these words, that the philosophy and strategy of nonviolence become immediately a subject for study and for serious experimentation in every field of human conflict, by no means excluding the relations between nations. It is, after all, nation-states which make war, which have produced the weapons which threaten the survival of mankind, and which are both genocidal and suicidal in character.
Here also we have ancient habits to deal with, vast structures of power, indescribably complicated problems to solve. But unless we abdicate our humanity altogether and succumb to fear and impotence in the presence of the weapons we have ourselves created, it is as imperative and urgent to put an end to war and violence between nations as it is to put an end to racial injustice.
We will not build a peaceful world by following a negative path. It is not enough to say "We must not wage war." It is necessary to love peace and sacrifice for it. We must concentrate not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but on the positive affirmation of peace. There is a fascinating little story that is preserved for us in Greek literature about Ulysses and the Sirens. The Sirens had the ability to sing so sweetly that sailors could not resist steering toward their island. Many ships were lured upon the rocks, and men forgot home, duty, and honor as they flung themselves into the sea to be embraced by arms that drew them down to death. Ulysses, determined not to be lured by the Sirens, first decided to tie himself tightly to the mast of his boat, and his crew stuffed their ears with wax. But finally he and his crew learned a better way to save themselves: they took on board the beautiful singer Orpheus whose melodies were sweeter than the music of the Sirens. When Orpheus sang, who bothered to listen to the Sirens?
So we must fix our vision not merely on the negative expulsion of war, but upon the positive affirmation of peace. We must see that peace represents a sweeter music, a cosmic melody that is far superior to the discords of war.»
«We must begin by acknowledging the hard truth that we will not eradicate violent conflict in our lifetimes. There will be times when nations – acting individually or in concert – will find the use of force not only necessary but morally justified.
I make this statement mindful of what Martin Luther King said in this same ceremony years ago – "Violence never brings permanent peace. It solves no social problem: it merely creates new and more complicated ones." As someone who stands here as a direct consequence of Dr. King's life's work, I am living testimony to the moral force of non-violence. I know there is nothing weak –nothing passive – nothing naïve – in the creed and lives of Gandhi and King.
But as a head of state sworn to protect and defend my nation, I cannot be guided by their examples alone. I face the world as it is, and cannot stand idle in the face of threats to the American people. For make no mistake: evil does exist in the world. A non-violent movement could not have halted Hitler's armies. Negotiations cannot convince al Qaeda's leaders to lay down their arms. To say that force is sometimes necessary is not a call to cynicism – it is a recognition of history; the imperfections of man and the limits of reason.
But we do not have to think that human nature is perfect for us to still believe that the human condition can be perfected. We do not have to live in an idealized world to still reach for those ideals that will make it a better place. The non-violence practiced by men like Gandhi and King may not have been practical or possible in every circumstance, but the love that they preached – their faith in human progress – must always be the North Star that guides us on our journey.»