September 27, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us
Because of Hurricane Maria, the island of Puerto Rico lies in ruins. There is no drinking water, no electricity, at least 80 percent of the crops have been destroyed, and whole sections remain under water. Older people stranded on the 15th floor of housing projects, often ill, slowly dying. Imagine yourself in that situation. It would be—and it is for those in it—a sheer horror.
Because of imperialism, millions of Puerto Ricans face this crisis with a broken-down infrastructure and virtually no help. Puerto Rico is a colony of the U.S. and as such has only ever been a place to suck super-profits out of the land and the people, and then leave them plundered and decimated when they are done—as they are doing now. With the people whom they have plundered and oppressed now facing a severe calamity, the U.S. is doing the bare minimum to avoid international embarrassment and exposure. This is in stark contrast to even the inadequate responses to the hurricanes recently in Texas and Florida, in the “home base” of U.S. imperialism. Instead of an immediate massive airlift of needed goods and emergency workers, there is a halting, stuttering effort not remotely close to what is needed… and what is extremely possible. Instead, hundreds and quite possibly thousands or even tens of thousands may needlessly die and all will suffer.
This is imperialism.
But with the Trump/Pence fascist regime in power, there is an added dimension. Trump makes sure to first ignore Puerto Rico (it’s a fucking week before he sends someone to check it out) and then taunt Puerto Rico for its debt (itself a product of imperialism), as if to blame the masses themselves for the hurricane.
“Texas & Florida are doing great but Puerto Rico, which was already suffering from broken infrastructure & massive debt, is in deep trouble..”
“…It’s old electrical grid, which was in terrible shape, was devastated. Much of the Island was destroyed, with billions of dollars….”
“…owed to Wall Street and the banks which, sadly, must be dealt with. Food, water and medical are top priorities – and doing well.”
This smug motherfucker is gloating. But there’s a method to the hateful and hate-filled madness. He is doing this because fascism, as a form of rule, not only requires white supremacy and toxic “USA Number One” shit, but its leaders and followers must actively pour contempt on oppressed people, making the “majority population” (white Americans) callous about their suffering, and preparing that population to turn a blind eye to or even support the still greater and possibly genocidal crimes that lay ahead.
This is fascism.
So Trump first ignores the disaster, then puts out a tweet dripping with a gleeful contempt, and then claims that he’s doing a great job. His regime defends his callous actions and equally callous inaction. Again, this is fascism, on a move to consolidate itself. This will not fix itself; this needs to driven from power.