The use of the phrase freedom-loving people implies that there are people who do NOT love freedom or to be free. It also indicates that there are people who would desire to NOT be free. Both of these concepts would seem to be beyond belief or possibility. As a propaganda tool, the phrase has a very strong impact. Who would NOT want to be free? Who would wish to be considered a non-freedom loving people?
The phrase has frequently been employed quite effectively by both Presidents George Herbert Walker Bush and George Walker Bush, President Ronald Reagan, members of the Bush administration, and other members of the diplomatic community.
Also see the following for quotes using the phrase freedom-loving people made by:
- freedom-loving people/George W. Bush;
- freedom-loving people/Ronald Reagan; and
- freedom-loving people/Republicans.
Peter Slevin, writing for the June 23, 2002, Washington Post, says:
- President George W. Bush's "use of the word makes foreign policy discourse easier for him, if not always enlightening for others, by eliminating the convolutions of history and policy in favor of the clarity of a simple common denominator. 'It wipes away complexity,' says former U.S. diplomat Morton Abramowitz. 'He believes in verities, and he believes in simple verities.'
- "The concept of freedom serves as a political device for Bush, as well as a source of moral authority. He invokes the word as shorthand for American values as he defines them, and treats the concept as an argument-stopper. Who but the evil-doers, after all, could be against freedom?" [Emphasis added.]
Question: Is it possible that Democrats have "freedom-loving people"-itis, as well?
- "There is no more clear example of this threat than Saddam Hussein's Iraq. His regime threatens the safety of his people, the stability of his region and the security of all the rest of us. I want the American people to understand, first, the past: How did this crisis come about? And I want then to understand what we must do to protect the national interest, and indeed the interest of all freedom-loving people in the world."
Question: And is it possible that the use of the phrase freedom-loving people has become pandemic?
"A Spring l984 Western Goals Foundation report had a cover story which praised Salvadoran rightist Roberto D'Aubuisson. Also in l984, the Western Goals Endowment Fund and several other rightwing groups co-sponsored a dinner to honor D'Aubuisson. They presented him with a plaque thanking him for his 'continuing efforts for freedom in the face of communist aggression which is an inspiration to freedom-loving people everywhere."
- "The aspiration for equality before the law began with the Magna Carta or even earlier, in King Arthur's court, where knights sat at a round table. But it took Thomas Jefferson to etch the concept in the minds of freedom-loving people everywhere, more permanently than posterity could have etched the words in the marble of the Jefferson Memorial. And even then, after those immortal words of the Declaration of Independence had been written, it took most of two centuries before America, land of the many miracles, almost made it a reality for the first time ever."
- "Each and every government that stood today in Geneva with the Cuban people's right to live in freedom and dignity has earned the gratitude of freedom loving people everywhere. All such governments deserve sincere commendation."
In his September 11, 2002, remarks at "the Ceremony in solidarity with the American people and the families of the victims on the first anniversary of the September 11th 2001 terror attack", Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said:
- "While the attack did succeed in destroying buildings and lives, and in causing agony, grief and profound shock to millions of people, it failed to extinguish the spirit of freedom and the eternal flame of the Torch of Liberty - that spirit which beats in the hearts of all New Yorkers and indeed all Americans, and the spirit which was then and is now shared by all freedom-loving people."
On December 13, 2002, the House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands passed a joint house resolution "Supporting President George W. Bush, President of the United States of America and the people of the United States in the fight against terrorists on the home front and throughout the world."
- "WHEREAS, in order to preserve peace, maintain and enjoy our democracy as freedom loving people of the world, the people of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands now join the President of the United States and all other freedom loving countries in the fight against terrorism."
Even the official "History of the White House" home page headlines the phrase:
- "For over two hundred years, The White House has stood as a symbol of decency and wholesomeness to hard-working, freedom-loving people all across Middle America."
Question: Who are these freedom-loving people anyhow?
Hank Zip, writing for the Canadian Western Catholic Reporter, February 11, 2002, quotes: John Ralston Saul:
- "When President Reagan stated in 1982: 'We have never interfered in the internal government of a country and have no intention of doing so, nor have we ever had any thought of that kind,' people did not break into titters of laughter and say out loud: 'Hey, we've done it 48 times in Central and South America alone.'
- "Instead, Ralston Saul continues, 'they said to themselves. 'Yes, we are good and freedom loving people.' Shortly thereafter Grenada was invaded.
- "The U.S. global interference and intervention is to ensure the protection of its political, economic and strategic interests. To that end it has no qualms sleeping with despots, dictators and military juntas while paying little or no attention to the suffering of innocent people.
- "The hall of infamy of disposed puppets is lined with portraits of dictators who relied on U.S. support to maintain 'freedom and democracy.' Such friends included Suharto, the Shah of Iran, Mobutu, Pinochet, Trujillo, Batista and Somoza.
- "Arms supplied to such regimes were used to eliminate legitimate opposition in the name of fighting terrorism and subversion.
- "'The day is not far off,' boasted President William Howard Taft in 1912, 'that the whole hemisphere, from pole to pole, will be ours. By virtue of our superiority of race, it is already ours morally.'"
Remarking on President George W. Bush's September 12, 2001, press conference, Rick Rozoff, editor of Emperor's Clothes, writes:
- "The White House, with none of the fictitious foreign policy fissures we've heard so much about, and its diehard loyalists on both sides of the Congressional aisle, have been evoking the specter of Osama bin Laden to rally hateful and revengeful public sentiment and to personify the oft-repeated 'evil' that threatens the United States and, to quote the president, 'all democratic and freedom-loving people'--no other of whom, it should be noted, seems to be on the alleged hit list of Mr. bin Laden."
- "President George W. Bush said on national television that 'America was targeted for attack because we're the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world.' The next day he said that 'freedom and democracy are under attack,' and that the perpetrators had struck against 'all freedom-loving people everywhere in the world.'
- "But if 'democracy' and freedom-loving people are the targets, why isn't anyone attacking Switzerland, Japan or Norway? Bush's claims are just as untrue as President Woodrow Wilson's World War I declaration that the United States was fighting to 'make the world safe for democracy,' and President Franklin D. Roosevelt's World War II assurances that the US was fighting for 'freedom' and 'democracy'."
Greg Forest, in his April 17, 2003, opinion piece "Mr. President - Where's The Beef?," comments:
- "During Gulf War I, Bush senior was always using the term, "freedom-loving people of Kuwait" as if Kuwait was a democracy not a kingdom and the people were free. The people of Kuwait may be freedom-loving but they aren't freedom-getting. It is clear that the Bush administration (like his predecessors, Republican and Democrat alike) will support any freedom-hating dictator whose economic interests coincide with ours."
Curiously, however, another use of the phrase comes not from President Bush but, rather, to President-Elect George W. Bush on January 12, 2001. In a congratulatory letter, Mohammad Parvin, Executive Director of the Mission for Establishment of Human Rights in Iran/MEHR Foundation, wrote:
- "On November 4, 1979, Islamic Regime of Iran seized the American Embassy and kept 52 Americans in captivity in the U.S. Embassy in Tehran for 444 days. But its hostage taking operation in fact started with taking hostage a nation, The Iranian Nation, right after seizing the power in 1979. Since then, this regime has terrorized the Iranian people inside and outside Iran, have conducted many terrorist activities against other countries including the US, and have been recognized as a terrorist regime by the US. It is against the will of the Iranian people, against the desire of the freedom loving people of the US, and against the security of the American, American/Iranian, and Iranian people to give any recognition to this regime and establishing any unconditional relation with it. Mr. President, establishing unconditional trade relations with the Islamic Regime of Iran will be slap in the face of all freedom loving people of the world."
Another interesting reference to the phrase comes from an October 16, 1988, memorandum written for presidential candidate Governor Michael Stanley Dukakis (then running against presidential candidate George H.W. Bush) by Gregory Berry, Esq.:
- "Campaigning so heavily on the so-called 'social values,' enables Bush to signal certain segments of the electorate (e.g., 'Reagan Democrats,' southern 'Boll Weevils') that he is on their side without appearing to pander to racism. If you doubt the truth of this then answer this question: when was the last time you heard Ronald Reagan deliver the 'shining city on a hill' speech or the 'America is a special place created for God-fearing, hard working, freedom-loving people' speech to a black audience? The answer is he never has. Nor has or will Bush. The reason is that it is not politically advantageous for the GOP to foster the notion that blacks want the same things for themselves, their children, and their country as do 'real' Americans."
Other Related SourceWatch Resources
- Bush doctrine
- media control
- mind control
- political hate speech
- power of persuasion
- Project for the New American Century
- religion and empire
- thought control
- war on freedom
- Andrej Bogdanov, Mr. Bush Goes to Europe, The Tech (MIT), Vol. 121:28, (June 15, 2001).