Former NYT Correspondent Calls Americans to 'Revolt,' 'Rise Up or Die'

Liz Thatcher
By Liz Thatcher | May 21, 2013 | 5:22 PM EDT

Chris Hedges, who served at The New York Times as a reporter and Middle East bureau chief for a total of 15 years, is no stranger to outrageous statements. In 2007, Hedges wrote a book attacking Christianity titled "American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America."

It should be no surprise, then, that in his May 20, 2013, column titled "Rise Up, or Die", Hedges calls for open rebellion as he attacks capitalism and corporations.

Hedges claims that there was no reason for people to "structure their behavior around the demands of the marketplace," stating that free market ideals are "utopian ideology." He also claims in that screed that market economies "all have been exposed as lies."

Hedges blames "corporate exploitation" for impoverished regions of the country, as well as for government intrusion like the Obama Administration's tapping of the AP's phone records and drone programs. According to his extreme view, there are merely a "handful of corporate oligarchs around the globe" who have "everything," while "the rest of us struggle as part of a vast underclass, increasingly impoverished and ruthlessly repressed."

After a lengthy diatribe against capitalism, he calls for rebellion.

"Rebel. Even if you fail, even if we all fail, we will have asserted against the corporate forces of exploitation and death," he writes. As models of the kind of rebellion he advocates, he praises cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal as well as Bradley Manning who leaked information to Julian Assange of Wikileaks.

"[Rebellion] means refusing to surrender, even if you find yourself, like Manning and Abu-Jamal, caged like an animal," Hedges said.

According to Hedges, those who do not rebel against the law are part of the problem. "To remain safe, to remain 'innocent' in the eyes of the law in this moment in history, is to be complicit in a monstrous evil."

Hedges calls the law "exclusively the handmaiden of our corporate oppressors," and advocates "revolt."

"Rise up or die," he concludes.

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