On January 20th I returned to the National Mall for the second Women’s March. While still significant in size, it was a lot smaller than last year and I decided to spend some more time wandering around. In addition to the Women’s March, there were several smaller groups that latched on to the event. There was an Impeach Trump March, a small contingent of the Libertarian Party, a group from the previous day’s March for Life, a “social justice a cappella,” and something about Bolivia I couldn’t quite understand.
But the one group that really grabbed my attention was Code Pink.
Code Pink was founded in late 2002 primarily as an anti-war organization, but you could be forgiven for thinking it’s real purpose is to be anti-American.
I spoke with one of the Code Pink members, and I will say that she was kind and respectful, but her answers to my questions were revealing.
I started by asking her what Code Pink’s end goal is, what are the conditions under which the group would decide they had achieved their purpose and could close up shop. She said their goal is a demilitarized America in which we have eliminated our Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps, although she allowed for the maintenance of the Coast Guard. When I pointed out that while completely disarming the United States she didn’t say anything about Iran, Russia, or ISIS disarming, she began what became a familiar theme: the problem starts with America.
In her telling, countries like Iran and North Korea are only militaristic because America scares them. Iran isn’t sending troops into Syria to prop up Assad, funding Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon and Houthi rebels in Yemen, and subverting the Iraqi government because of a regional power struggle or a centuries old war between Sunnis and Shia. No, Iran does those things because America is allies with Saudi Arabia.
You can guess why she believes North Korea periodically attacks South Korea, Russia annexed Crimea, and terrorist groups blow up civilian targets. Anyone who knows me can tell you I enjoy a healthy dose of American jingoism from time to time, but not even I think America is at the center of the universe the way she does.
According to her, we would not even need our military for defensive wars because defensive wars are a myth. If the United States is attacked, it is only because our government is belligerent and did not try for peace. Through this line of thinking, the blame for absolutely every war can be placed at the feet of America.
This is part and parcel for the far-left Code Pink.
She insisted Code Pink calls on America to disarm unilaterally and not Russia, China, Iran, and others because it is an American organization focused on domestic policy, and yet their co-founder Medina Benjamin felt the need to defend anti-American Hugo Chavez even as his Venezuelan dictatorship shutdown news organizations critical of his government. Code Pink has also defended the Castros’ dictatorships in Cuba and the Iranian theocracy.
Other prominent anti-war organizations show a similar pattern. Cindy Sheehan co-founded Gold Star Families for Peace after her son was killed in the Iraq war. That is a pain I do not know and hope to never know. She deserves our sympathy and the understanding that grief can make people lash out in ways they typically would not. But thousands of Americans sacrificed their lives for our country, and when she says the things she says, she insults them all.
Cindy Sheehan is never short on invective when condemning the United States as a “lying, murderous empire” full of war criminals who intentionally murder children, but never seems to work up the same level of anger when discussing the terrorists who actually do target women and children. When the United States finally tracked down Osama bin Laden and Navy Seals sent him to hell, Cindy Sheehan was oddly insistent that it was not true, and again used the opportunity to attack America.
Cindy Sheehan also praised Hugo Chavez as a “dear friend” and “good example,” specifically because he was a “constant thorn in the side to El Imperio the meddlesome and harmful Empire to the north.” Just like Code Pink, Cindy Sheehan believes North Korea’s frequent provocations, attacks, and threats of nuclear war are all justified and “is acting rationally and in self-defense.”
Code Pink, Chindy Sheehan, and other prominent anti-war activists are all too frequently willing and eager to defend dictatorships, even ones engaged in wars of conquest. If a country will insult, threaten, or in any way oppose America, these groups supposedly dedicated to peace can forgive just about any act of aggression.
The unifying thread throughout some of the most prominent anti-war organizations is not a commitment to peace, but base anti-Americanism.