Noam Chomsky on Commemorating the JFK Assassination: It “Would Impress Kim Il-Sung”

jfk chomskyIn recent decades, his­to­ri­ans have tried to offer a bal­anced assess­ment of JFK’s life and lega­cy, offer­ing clear-eyed accounts of his han­dling of for­eign and domes­tic pol­i­cy, and rais­ing ques­tions about his infi­deli­ties and health prob­lems, all the while chip­ping away at the Camelot myth. On Fri­day, the 50th anniver­sary of the Kennedy assas­si­na­tion, the hagiog­ra­phy returned, and even peren­ni­al cads like Rush Lim­baugh had lit­tle bad to say about Amer­i­ca’s 35th pres­i­dent. He sim­ply insist­ed that JFK would be a con­ser­v­a­tive, if still alive today.

Per­haps the only notable excep­tion was Noam Chom­sky. Nev­er a fan of Kennedy (or prob­a­bly any oth­er Amer­i­can pres­i­dent for that mat­ter), Chom­sky was asked by Truthout, “Do you find it odd that the coun­try is focus­ing on a 50th anniver­sary remem­brance of the Kennedy assas­si­na­tion?” A lead­ing ques­tion, no doubt, to which Chomksy replied, “Wor­ship of lead­ers is a tech­nique of indoc­tri­na­tion that goes back to the crazed George Wash­ing­ton cult of the 18th cen­tu­ry and on to the tru­ly lunatic Rea­gan cult of today, both of which would impress Kim Il-sung. The JFK cult is sim­i­lar.” It’s what you get when you live in “a deeply indoc­tri­nat­ed soci­ety.” If you’re ready to have Chom­sky throw more cold water (or is it com­bustible gaso­line?) on the JFK lega­cy, head over to Truthout for more.

P.S. Don’t shoot the mes­sen­ger on this…

via Leit­er Reports

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Noam Chom­sky Slams Žižek and Lacan: Emp­ty ‘Pos­tur­ing’

Clash of the Titans: Noam Chom­sky and Michel Fou­cault Debate Human Nature and Pow­er on Dutch TV, 1971

Noam Chom­sky vs. William F. Buck­ley, 1969

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  • Mat Verberkt says:

    I will not shoot you, mes­sen­ger. Sure­ly not on the ulti­mate con­se­quence of thor­ough­ly think­ing, which I think is one of the ‘few’ things Chom­sky is a mas­ter. But you only need a few things to inspire oth­er peo­ple to see things clear

  • Douglas Hazelrigg says:

    I agree that mankind has always and most like­ly will always engage in wor­ship of its fall­en lead­ers, but I see it as a nat­ur­al, uni­ver­sal impulse, and not the result of some form of “top-down” indoc­tri­na­tion. And yes, Jong-Il would admire it :)

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