Letter: Ironic celebration by imperialist nation

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To the editor:

On July 4, many Americans will take part in the celebrations with fireworks and barbecues. However, it is important not to lose sight of what the holiday means. It is the 244th anniversary of our independence from British colonization and imperialism. The irony of celebrating an anti-imperialist holiday while the U.S. is the largest imperial force in the world is not lost on me.

The U.S. has troops deployed in 177 of the 193 U.N. member states. With more than 800 overseas military bases, and a military budget that is larger than the next 10 countries combined, American imperialist tendencies are easily visible. According to a Brown University study, an estimated 480,000 people were killed in post 9/11 operations in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. Of those casualties, almost 250,000 of them were civilians. These senseless deaths contribute nothing to our national security and only hurt our image abroad. With every civilian killed, we make recruitment for terrorist groups even easier. Presidential administrations in both major political parties have tried to mislead the public as to how our wars overseas are going. The reasoning for this is simple: to keep support for any war, the U.S. population must be fed handpicked propaganda.

We should seek to quickly reduce our overseas military presence, for the sake of protecting both our national security and protecting the human rights of people from these regions. U.S. imperialism is an expensive and dangerous problem that causes more harm than it prevents.

Elliot Louis,

Williamstown

The writer is a rising 10th grader at Mt.Greylock Regional High School.

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