Southeast Asia Ignores US War on Huawei

September 7, 2019 (Joseph Thomas – NEO) – The Western media has begun complaining about Southeast Asia’s collective decision to move forward with 5G network technology from Chinese telecom giant Huawei despite US demands that nations ban all Huawei products.

These demands are predicated on clearly fabricated security threats surrounding Huawei technology. The US itself is a global leader of producing hardware with hidden backdoors and other security flaws for the purpose of spying worldwide.

Instead, the US is clearly targeting the telecom giant as part of a wider campaign to cripple China economically and contain its ability to contest US global hegemony.

Media Disinformation Serves the War on Huawei 

Articles like Reuters’ “Thailand launches Huawei 5G test bed, even as U.S. urges allies to bar Chinese gear,” in title alone confounds informed readers.

The article’s author, Patpicha Tanakasempipat, fails to explain in which ways the US is “allies” with any of the nations of Southeast Asia, including Thailand. The history of US activity in Southeast Asia has been one of coercion, interference, intervention, colonisation and protracted war.

As US power has faded, it has resorted to “soft power,” with its most recent “pivot to Asia” being accompanied by several failed attempts to overthrow regional governments and replace them with suitable proxies.

Considering this, and a complete lack of suitable US alternatives to Huawei’s products, there is little mystery as to why the region as a whole has ignored US demands regarding Huawei.

The article claims:

Thailand launched a Huawei Technologies 5G test bed on Friday, even as the United States urges its allies to bar the Chinese telecoms giant from building next-generation mobile networks.

Huawei, the world’s top producer of telecoms equipment and second-biggest maker of smartphones, has been facing mounting international scrutiny amid fears China could use its equipment for espionage, a concern the company says is unfounded.

Patpicha fails categorically to cite any evidence substantiating US claims. She also fails categorically to point out that there is in fact a glaring lack of evidence behind US claims, just as many other articles across the Western media have predictably and purposefully done.

Vietnam, the Outlier 

The one exception in Southeast Asia is Vietnam. It has sidestepped considering Huawei in favour of US-based Qualcomm and Scandinavian companies Nokia and Ericsson. While the Vietnamese government said its decision was based on technical concerns rather than geopolitics, a Bloomberg article quoted the CEO of state-owned telecom concern, Viettel Group, who claimed:

We are not going to work with Huawei right now. It’s a bit sensitive with Huawei now. There were reports that it’s not safe to use Huawei. So Viettel’s stance is that, given all this information, we should just go with the safer ones. So we choose Nokia and Ericsson from Europe.

The same article would also cite supposed experts who claim Vietnam seeks closer ties with the US in countering China’s growing stature upon the global stage, and ultimately folded to US demands because of this.

This however is unlikely. Vietnam – among all of Southeast Asia’s nations – is not an “ally” of Washington.

The US waged a bloody war against Vietnam at the cost of 4 million lives. The nation still bears the burden of chemical warfare through persistent birth defects as well as swaths of land covered in unexploded ordnance. To this day the US maintains a stable of opposition groups it funds to pressure and coerce the Vietnamese government. The US also invests in groups fanning anti-Chinese sentiment inside Vietnam.

Considering this, Vietnam, by spurning Huawei at the moment, is more likely cynically playing the US and China off one another with this particular move aimed at currying leverage over Beijing and favour with Washington, while at other junctures, Vietnam has made moves to gain leverage over Washington while cultivating closer ties with Beijing.

Not Just Thailand

The same Bloomberg article would note:

Vietnam’s decision to shun Huawei appears to make it an outlier in Southeast Asia, where other countries such as the Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia are open to deploying Huawei’s technology.

The irony of this is that the Philippines in particular has been touted by Washington as one of its key partners in provoking China over its claims in the South China Sea. Not only has Manila repeatedly sabotaged or undermined Washington’s efforts in the South China Sea deciding to bilaterally deal with Beijing instead and without US help, it is now openly ignoring US demands to dump Huawei technology.

Malaysia has been another target of US political interference. There were hopes in Washington that after the last Malaysian elections, victorious parties backed by Washington would cut growing ties with Beijing. This did not happen. While some Malaysian-Chinese deals were renegotiated, they continued to move forward nonetheless.

By ignoring US demands that Huawei products be banned and by moving forward with Huawei technology for national 5G infrastructure, Malaysia affirms again that Asia’s future will be determined in Asia by the nations residing there, not by Washington thousands of miles away.

While the US remains a potent geopolitical hegemon with a powerful military and economy, and the means to inflict punishment on nations opposing its agenda across the globe, it is still a hegemon in decline.

The US is not losing to China because it hasn’t been ruthless enough or because its “allies” are not cooperating. It is not losing to China because of anything in particular China is doing to the US. The US is losing because of fundamental flaws in what is an entirely unsustainable and indefensible foreign policy.

Until it fixes those fundamental flaws and adopts a more appropriate foreign policy, it will continue to lose out to competitors like China. Its tech giants like Apple and Qualcomm will continue to lose out to competitors like Huawei. No amount of coercion, threats or acts of malice can change the fact that at a fundamental level, the US has no competitive edge and its power stems more from momentum than from any remaining driving strength.

While nations bide their time for this momentum to diminish, Beijing, Moscow and the capitals of other developing and emerging global powers continue building an alternative global order based on a multipolar balance of power and the primacy of national sovereignty… a global order where, for example, one nation does not get to decide who the rest of the world works with to build their respective telecom infrastructure.

Joseph Thomas is chief editor of Thailand-based geopolitical journal, The New Atlas and contributor to the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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تجدّد الفشل الأميركي في مواجهة التنين الصيني وقنابله الدخانية في الخليج تذروها الرياح

أغسطس 10, 2019

محمد صادق الحسيني

بداية لا بدّ من القول إنه يجب على كلّ متابع للشأن الصيني، وبالتالي لجهود الصين المشتركة مع روسيا وإيران وغيرهما من الدول لإنهاء سيطرة القطب الأميركي الواحد على العالم، ان يتذكر أنّ ما ينفذه الرئيس الأميركي ترامب ضدّ الصين، من إجراءات اقتصادية/ مالية وسياسية وعسكرية، ليست بالإجراءات الأميركية الجديدة إطلاقاً.

اذ انّ العداء الأميركي لجمهورية الصين الشعبية قد بدأ منذ نشأة هذه الدولة، سنة 1949، ومنذ أن قام الجنرال تشين كاي تشيك، زعيم ما كان يُعرف بالكومينتانغ واثر هزيمة قواته امام قوات التحرير الشعبيه الصينية، بقيادة الزعيم الصيني ماوتسي تونغ في نهاية الحرب الأهلية الصينية، التي استمرت من سنة 1945 حتى 1949، نقول حيث قام زعيم الكومينتانغ، مع فلول قواته، بالهرب من البر الصيني المحرر الى جزيرة فورموزا تايوان وسيطر عليها، من خلال وحدات الكومينتانغ العميلة للولايات المتحدة، والتي تمكنت من ذلك بمساعدة عسكرية أميركية مباشرة.

وقد تمادت الولايات المتحدة في عدوانها على جمهورية الصين الشعبية بدعمها هذا الكيان اللقيط، الذي أطلقت عليه اسم تايوان، ومنحته ليس فقط عضوية الأمم المتحدة، وإنما عضوية دائمة في مجلس الأمن الدولي. أيّ انها أصبحت دولة تتمتع بحق الفيتو في ما كانت جمهورية الصين الشعبية محرومة من حق العضوية في منظمة الامم المتحدة بالمطلق، وذلك حتى سنة 1971 عندما بدأت الولايات المتحدة بتطبيق سياسة انفتاح مبرمج على الصين.

ولكن المخططات الأميركية، المعادية لاستقلالية القرار الصيني والهادفة الى وقف التطور الاقتصادي الصيني، لم تتغيّر مطلقاً، طوال سبعينيات وثمانينيات القرن الماضي التي شهدت إقامة علاقات دبلوماسية بين الدولتين. وقد وصلت مؤامرات الولايات المتحدة، ضدّ الصين، قمتها في ربيع سنة 1989، عندما أطلقت واشنطن حملة سياسية وإعلامية دولية ضدّ جمهورية الصين الشعبية، تحت حجة دعم مطالب شعبية صينية، كان قد طرحها محتجون صينيون عبر تظاهرات في عدة مدن صينية، خاصة في ميدان تيان ان مين، الذي شهد احتجاجات وصدامات، منذ أوائل شهر نيسان وحتى أواسط حزيران سنة 1989، بين المحتجين وقوات الأمن الصينية. تلك الصدامات التي انتهت بإعادة فرض النظام في كلّ مكان والقضاء على ظاهرة الثوره الملوّنة في مهدها.

وها هي الولايات المتحدة، ومعها بقايا ما كان يطلق عليه مسمّى بريطانيا العظمى، تحاول إثارة المتاعب أمام الحكومة الصينية المركزية، وذلك عبر إثارة الشغب وحالات الفوضى في جزيرة هونغ كونغ، التي اضطرت بريطانيا الى إعادتها الى الوطن الأمّ، الصين الشعبية، عام 1997، مستخدمة مجموعات محلية مرتبطة بمخططات خارجية، يتمّ تسييرها وتوجيهها من قبل أجهزة مخابرات أميركية وبريطانيا منذ ما يقارب الشهرين، دون أن تقوم قوات الأمن الصينية بأكثر من الحدّ الأدنى لحفظ النظام.

ولكن استمرار هذه السياسة الانجلوأميركية وتزامنها مع استمرار التحشيد العسكري الأميركي، في البحار القريبة من الصين كشرق المحيط الهندي وبحر الصين الجنوبي وخليج البنغال وبحر اليابان وغيرها من البحار، وصولاً الى إرسال حاملة الطائرات الأميركية رونالد ريغان الى بحر الصين الجنوبي، في خطوة استفزازية للصين، نقول انّ استمرار هذه السياسة الأميركية، الى جانب العقوبات الاقتصادية والمالية التي فرضت على الصين، وفِي ظلّ قدسية الحفاظ على وحدة وسيادة جمهورية الصين الشعبية على كافة أراضيها، فقد أصدر المتحدث باسم مكتب شؤون هونغ كونغ وماكاو تصريحاً شديد اللهجة قال فيه: بودّنا التوضيح لمجموعة صغيرة من المجرمين العنيفين عديمي الضمير ومن يقف وراءهم انّ من يلعب بالنار سيُقتل بها.لا ترتكبوا خطأ في تقييم الوضع. ولا تعتبروا ممارستنا لضبط النفس ضعفاً .

إذن… هذه رسالة صينية نارية واضحة وصريحة، لا بل أمر عمليات، موجّه لليانكي الأميركي، وليس فقط لبعض أذناب الاستعمار في هونغ كونغ، من سواحل بحر الصين الجنوبي، مفادها: لا تلعبوا بالنار…

وما يزيد أمر العمليات الصيني هذا زخماً وقوة، هو صدوره بعد الجولة الفاشلة، التي قام بها وزيرا الحرب والخارجية الأميركيان، في استراليا وعدد من دول المحيط الهادئ، في محاولة منهما لإقناع تلك الدول بالموافقة على نشر صواريخ أميركية، موجهة الى الصين، على أراضيها ورفض جميع الدول المعنية لهذه الفكرة الأميركية الهدامة. كما انّ أمر العمليات هذا قد تزامن مع وصول حاملة الطائرات الأميركية، رونالد ريغان، الى بحر الصين الجنوبي كما أسلفنا.

إذن وكما جرت العادة فإنّ الولايات المتحدة، ممثلة برئيسها ورئيس دبلوماسيتها، تمارس الكذب والتضليل بشكل فاضح وخطير. ففي الوقت الذي تشنّ فيه إدارة الرئيس ترامب حملتها التضليلية الكاذبة، حول ضرورة الحفاظ على أمن الخليج ومضيق هرمز، وحماية السفن التجارية التي تبحر فيهما فإنها تطلق قنابل دخانية للتغطية على خطواتها الأكثر خطورة على الأمن الدولي، المتمثلة في تعزيز الحشد العسكري الاستراتيجي ضدّ كلّ من روسيا والصين الشعبية، وذلك من خلال:

1 ـ مواصلة إرسال حاملات الطائرات، ابراهام لينكولن ورونالد ريغان، ومجموعتيهما البحريتين الى مناطق عمليات أكثر قرباً من الصين.

2 ـ سحب قاذفات القنابل الأميركية الاستراتيجية، من طراز /B 52/ التي كانت ترابط في قاعدة العيديد القطرية ونقلها الى قاعدة دييغو غارسيا في المحيط الهندي، غرب المحيط الهندي.

3 ـ مواصلة الولايات المتحدة لمناوراتها المشتركة مع كوريا الجنوبية والتي لا تشكل استفزازاً لكوريا الشمالية فحسب، وإنما لجمهورية الصين الشعبية أيضاً، وذلك لأنها تفضي إلى مزيد من الحضور العسكري الأميركي في المحيط القريب من الصين.

وفي إطار قنابل الدخان هذه، فإنّ القنبلة الأكثر إثارة للسخرية هي الهراء الذي أطلقه وزير خارجية نتن ياهو، ايسرائيل كاتس، يوم امس الأول حول احتمال مشاركة إسرائيل في التحالف البحري الذي دعت الولايات المتحدة لإقامته في الخليج.

ولكن هذا الوزير نسي انّ دولته لا تعتبر دولة تملك قوة بحرية ذات قيمة على الصعيد الدولي، على الرغم من امتلاكها غواصات دولفين، الألمانية الصنع، والقادرة على حمل رؤوس نووية، والخاضعة لمراقبة سلاح البحرية الإيراني على مدار الساعه والعديمة القدرة على المناورة ضدّ إيران في أيّ من بحار المنطقة، لأسباب لا مجال للتوسع في شرحها.

اذن هذه التصريحات الإسرائيلية لا يمكن اعتبارها أكثر من قنبلة دخان انتخابية لصالح نتن ياهو ليس إلا. ولا تدخل حتى في استراتيجية الولايات المتحدة الأكثر شمولية. ولمزيد من التوضيح فانّ هذا الوزير، كاتس، كان كمن أراد الاستجارة من الرمضاء بالنار، أيّ أنه أراد أن يغطي على فشل كيانه في مواجهة حلف المقاومة وعلى رأسه إيران بحشر أنف إسرائيل في وضع الخليج، مستنداً الى الوجود الأمني الإسرائيلي الواسع في السعودية ودول الخليج العربية الأخرى.

هذا الوجود الذي تعود جذوره إلى أكثر من عشرين عاماً، أيّ إلى نهاية تسعينيات القرن الماضي، حيث بدأت السعودية والإمارات بإبرام عقود حماية أمنية، للمنشآت النفطية في البلدين، مع شركات أمن إسرائيلية، وهو الأمر الذي مكَّن هذه الشركات الإسرائيلية، وهي في الحقيقة أذرع لجهاز الموساد الإسرائيلي، من إقامة بنية تحتية استخبارية كاملة تخدم الأهداف الإسرائيلية. علماً أنّ هذا الوجود الاستخباري الإسرائيلي الكثيف لا يمثل أيّ قيمة لها تأثير على موازين القوى في ميادين القتال. حيث انّ مناطق هذا الوجود، أيّ السعودية ودوّل الخليج، لم يكن يوماً جزءاً من ميادين القتال ضدّ الجيش الإسرائيلي ، وعليه فإنه وجود لا يختلف عن وجود العصافير في القفص، لا قيمة له ميدانية أو عملية إطلاقاً.

لكلّ نبأ مستقرّ.

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله…

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America Tries to Solve Everything With Money! Will Fail at Bribing the Entire World!

What’s Happening in the “Land of the Free” and the “Home of the Brave”?

Global Research, June 29, 2019

There’s something happening here/What it is ain’t exactly clear.” – Buffalo Springfield

The Sunday newspaper had been left on the park bench.  Its book page had lists of best-sellers, as if numbers two through ten could be the “best” along with number one.  Absurdities were everywhere for the taking.  On the Non-Fiction Hardcover list, numbers 3, 5, and 10 each had the word fuck in the title.  The books were published by two old and respected publishing houses: Harper and Little Brown.  However, something was odd, for the word fuck was spelled f*ck.  These books were about hope, acceptance, and living the good life, cliché topics in a feel-good culture: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, Everything is F*cked, and Calm the F*ck Down.  It seemed you had to be f*cked first before you could accept the hope that the good life was coming your way. He wondered if these publishing houses thought that by eliminating the “u” they kept their hands clean and were not descending into the gutter with hoi polloi, while simultaneously titillating potential readers.  Did they think readers would be offended by the word fuck, but would not be by f*ck?  Then it occurred to him that he didn’t know what the fuck non-fiction books were anyway.  Maybe he had been wrong all his life and the opposite of up was non-up, not down.

*

On every table in the seaside resort’s breakfast room there was a brightly colored flower in a clear watered vase.  When he picked it up to smell the orange blossom, there was no smell and the water didn’t move.  He imagined an ersatz form of plastic happiness, a conjurer’s delight, where everything was a trick, nothing moved, not even water.

*

Leaving the Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton in southern California where white and black Marines were regularly fighting and there were even some killings never reported by the press, the two young Marines escaped the tense and claustrophobic atmosphere on a weekend pass.  It was early February 1967, and they took an overnight bus up the coast to San Francisco where they wandered around and found a breakfast restaurant near Union Square. There they read in the newspaper that for the week of January 12-19 the U.S. military had suffered its highest casualty count so far in Vietnam: 144 killed, 1, 044 wounded, and 6 missing-in-action.  It jolted them awake more than the coffee.  Later that afternoon, the two naifs wandered into the Haight-Ashbury district were they were startled by the first waves of acid-dazed hippies, who would soon arrive in hoards for the “summer of love.”  In the evening when they visited a bar for some beers, the waitress who delivered their drinks was topless.  While they regarded this slight anomaly with manly indifference, she must have noticed their military haircuts that stood out among the longhairs, and so she served them buttons with their beers.  The buttons read: Vietnam Love It Or Leave It. Heading back to the base, they knew where they didn’t want to go.

*

The young man was studying for a PhD.  He was intent on learning what made the world and people tick.  He was attending a small seminar at the home of his professor, a famous German emigre who had worked for the Rand Corporation and U.S.  Intelligence. Each of the five students was to give a short presentation on the subject of fake news and the issue of knowledge, since the course concerned the sociology of knowledge.  The student began his presentation by quoting a famous philosopher’s words: “In formulating any philosophy, the first consideration must always be: What can we know?  That is, what can we be sure we know, or sure that we know we knew it, if indeed it is all knowable.

Or have we simply forgotten it and are too embarrassed to say anything?  Descartes hinted at the problem when he wrote, ‘My mind can never know my body, although it has become quite friendly with my legs.’ By “knowable,” incidentally, I do not mean that which can be known by perception of the senses, or that which can be grasped by the mind, but more that which can be said to be Known or to possess a Knownness or Knowability, or at least something you can mention to a friend.”  The student paused and the eminent professor said, “So very interesting.  Who is that philosopher?”  The student replied, “Woody Allen.”  “He is very perceptive,” said the professor, “and yet I have never heard of him.  I will have to read his work.”  The student realized he was in good hands with such U.S. intelligence and Rand Corporation experts, so he asked the professor’s wife for another glass of the German wine she was serving and toasted his good fortune with a wry grin. None of the other students got the joke.

*

A young man was reading a book that he highly recommended to his uncle.  Leafing through it, the older man came upon this passage: “the free individual is just a fictional tale concocted by an assembly of biochemical algorithms.”  So what was the point of reading such a book, he wondered, since doing so was an exercise in pre-programmed absurdity since there was no freedom.

*

You have probably seen the bumper sticker that says: “Shit Happens.”  Some people are just lucky, I suppose, and odd coincidences mark their lives. When he was just out of Columbia College and working for Business International Corporation, a known CIA front company, Barack Obama had a chance encounter with a young woman, Genevieve Cook, with whom he had a 1-2 year relationship.

Like Obama and at about the same time, Cook just happened to have lived in Indonesia with her father, Michael Cook, who just happened to become Australia’s top spook, the director-general of the Office of National Assessments, and also the Ambassador to Washington.

Of course, Obama’s mother, as is well-known, just happened to be living in Indonesia with Barack and Obama’s step-father, Lolo Soetoro, an Indonesian military officer under the command of General Suharto.

The CIA supported General Suharto’s coup against President Sukarno and the slaughter of over a million Indonesian Communists and Indonesian-Chinese.

Image: Indonesia massacre 1965

As is also well-known, it just so happened that Obama’s mother, Ann Dunham, trained in the Russian language, after teaching English in the US Embassy in Jakarta that housed one of the largest CIA stations in Asia, did her “anthropological” work in Indonesia and Southeast Asia financed by the well-known CIA conduits, USAID and the Ford Foundation. Then there is Cook’s stepfather, Philip C. Jessup, who just happened to be in Indonesia at the same time, doing nickel-mining deals with the genocidal Suharto government.  Anyway, “shit happens.”  You never know whom you might meet along the way of life.

*

The hostess at the seaside restaurant had an eastern European accent, so he asked her where she was from.  She said, “Belgrade, Serbia.”  He told her he was sorry for what the U.S. government led by Bill Clinton had done to her country and that he considered Clinton a war criminal. She said the bombing in 1999 was terrifying, and even though she was young at the time, she vividly remembered it. It traumatized her, her parents, and her family.  Then she smiled and said that in the month she had been in the U.S. for her summer job, all the Americans she had met had been so friendly.  He welcomed her to the U.S., and as he was walking away, he remembered that Clinton’s savage bombing of Serbia that had killed so many Serbian children and other innocents had been code-named “Operation Noble Anvil.”  He wondered what kind of “noble” people would think of innocent children as anvils: “heavy usually steel-faced iron blocks on which metal is shaped,” and did the friendly Americans accept Clinton’s sick lies when he ended his March 24, 1999 war address to the American people with these words: “Our thoughts and prayers tonight must be with the men and women of our armed forces, who are undertaking this mission for the sake of our values and our children’s future. May God bless them, and may God bless America.”

*

The banal, 1967 hit song, “San Francisco” (Be sure to wear flowers in your hair), which was influential in enticing young people to come to San Francisco for the Summer of Love, was written by “Papa” John Philips, who attended the US Naval Academy at Annapolis and whose father was a Marine Corps Captain.  “Papa” John’s wife had worked at the Pentagon and her father was involved in covert intelligence work in Vietnam.  His neighbor and Laurel Canyon (Los Angeles) buddy was Jim Morrison of Doors fame, whose father US Navy Admiral George Morrison commanded U.S. warships in Vietnam’s Tonkin Gulf during the “Tonkin Gulf Incident.” Frank Zappa, the father figure of Laurel Canyon’s many musicians who just happened to converge in one place at the same time where a covert military film studio operated, had a father who was a chemical warfare specialist at Edgewood Arsenal.  Stephen Stills, David Crosby and many other soon to be famous musicians all came from military and intelligence backgrounds and frolicked in Laurel Canyon.  Although they were draft age, none of them was drafted as they played music, dropped acid, and created the folk-rock movement whose music was catchy but innocuous and posed no threat to the establishment. But “shit happens.”  In his disturbing book, Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon, David McGowan raises the question: “what if the musicians themselves (and various other leaders and founders of the ‘movement’) were every bit as much a part of the intelligence community as the people who were supposedly harassing them?  What if, in other words, the entire youth culture of the 1960s was created not as a grass-roots challenge to the status quo, but as a cynical exercise in discrediting and marginalizing the budding anti-war movement and creating a fake opposition that could be easily controlled and led astray….What if, in reality, they were pretty much all playing on the same team?”

*

The reporter was interviewing four of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s (image left) young “executive governors,” who were all dressed in three-piece business suits.  They were in the process of conducting Transcendental Meditation’s weeklong course leading to supernormal abilities, including, flying, levitating, disappearing, x-ray vision, and other siddhis, or supernormal powers.  Their recent press release had advertised the course as “a new breakthrough for human life on earth” for any person.  The reporter was a bit skeptical that people could be taught – for a large fee – to fly or disappear.

He asked one of the executive governors, “Can you literally rise into the air and move horizontally; can you see yourself and can others see you actually fly?” “Absolutely,” Larry Johnson replied without hesitation, “absolutely.  Once you eliminate all stress from your nervous system, you have unbounded, unlimited potential.  A human can achieve any desire he wants, flying is only one of them.”  “People will be skeptical,” the reporter continued, “How about a demonstration?”  “A public demonstration would cause too much of a ruckus,” said Johnson.  “And we couldn’t show you because we only do it for each other.  Actually, we do our techniques with our eyes closed, but we do peek out once in a while and see each other flying around the room.

You know, one of the siddhis is a technique for making yourself invisible, and the Mararishi has said, ‘Don’t peek out to see if you’ve disappeared.’” Johnson giggled and added, “We can also teach people to x-ray their own bodies and see through walls. Absolutely, absolutely.  It’s all about infinite correlation.  Absolutely.” As the battered reporter left the interview, he wondered if the Maharishi was a creation of the CIA.  He remembered John Lennon’s song lines about the Maharishi’s assistant:  “But he often spread rumors through his right hand man/Who used to be with the CIA”

*

What is “exactly clear” is that Buffalo Springfield (Stephen Stills, Neil Young et al.) toured with their Laurel Canyon buddies, the Beach Boys, in late 1967 (their other mutual bud, Charlie Manson, stayed out west presumably to work on his craft) and performed at a very odd venue for a “dissident” rock group, The U.S. Military Academy at West Point.  At that time nearly 500,000 American troops were waging war on the Vietnamese.  That concert was an odd happening, wouldn’t you say?

*

If  everyone actually looked, they’d see precisely what went down, “what’s going down,” and why we are going down.  If you think many of these things “just happen” for no reason, then I guess you are just “f*cked.”  Excuse me, but it’s true.  Does the asterisk help?

*

Note to readers: please click the share buttons below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

Distinguished author and sociologist Edward Curtin is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization. His website is http://edwardcurtin.com/.

The Anti War Movement, SDS, The Weather Underground And The Jews.

May 13, 2019  /  Gilad Atzmon

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In the 1960s, the United States had an authentic broad based peace movement that sprang from opposition to the War in Vietnam. Motives varied; fear of the draft, revulsion for the US strategy that was based on increasing enemy deaths, and general youthful rebellion probably all played a part. Yet by 1970, years before the end of the war, the anti war movement was in disarray. This paper addresses some of the reasons the movement was never able to capitalize on its support or to form a broad based Left anti war party. In fact, some remnants of the rancorous movement can be seen now in the US’ deeply divided politics.

Long term American involvement in Vietnam escalated after the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin Resolution that gave President Johnson the power to wage war. As the war expanded in 1965, the fledgling anti war movement focused on ending US involvement in Vietnam. In his history of the anti war movement of which he was part, Bill Zimmerman writes that at first the movement adopted “two strategic goals: to give activists enough knowledge about Vietnam to be able to draw others into action, and to normalize opposition, since many Americans were hesitant to oppose their own country in a time of war.”

By 1967 the costs of the war were increasingly evident. As death tolls rose, the anti war movement grew and its stated goals evolved into a plan to build a mass movement and convert it into a political force. That year there were a number of large anti war demonstrations including 100,000 protesters gathered at the Lincoln Memorial and 500,000 in New York.

As the war dragged on, it began to seem that although the US military could level a city, it was not equipped to win a limited war on foreign turf. Perhaps for this or other reasons in 1967 much of the anti war movement adopted a frankly anti American posture. According to Bill Zimmerman: “Our strategy, less coherent than in earlier stages, was to force an end to the war by creating instability, chaos and disruption at home.”

This shift can be seen in the changes in one of the largest anti war groups, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). SDS began in 1960 as a Leftist education and civil rights group that by 1965 had taken on a leadership role in the anti war movement. In 1968, SDS gained a large number of new members following North Vietnam’s Tet Offensive whose success came as a shock to many Americans who had been repeatedly informed that the communists’ resolve and resources were crumbling. Even the ordinarily prosaic newscaster Walter Cronkite remarked, “to say that we are mired in stalemate is the only reasonable, yet unsatisfactory conclusion.”

At its peak, in 1969, SDS had over 100,000 members and its actions made national news. Many of the members who had joined in 1968-9 were anti war, but not necessarily radical or Leftist, and tended to be from the south and the midwest. They were largely ignorant of and disinterested in the Left and its history. As Kirkpatrick Sale writes in his exhaustive history of the SDS: “They were non-Jewish, nonintellectual, nonurban, from a nonprofessional class, and often without any family tradition of political involvement, much less radicalism.”

With the influx of working class members, SDS, always a tumultuous organization, entered a period of destructive internal turmoil and battles for leadership that pitted the ‘old guard’ intellectual Leftists who fought to adopt radical policies against the ‘new guard’ who were more interested in demonstrations to end the war.

Steve Weissman, a veteran of the old guard, later regretted that the SDS had “underestimat[ed] … the importance of the anti war movement and lost the chance to create a permanent political force in America.” By failing to use the anti war movement for recruitment and education and peckishly insisting on increasingly far Left political positions, the SDS lost a chance to build an American left, one that included not only intellectuals and students but other strata of America as well.

The Yippies, formed at the end of 1967 by Abbie Hoffman and a few others, were a publicity hungry anti war group whose principal weapon was the public mockery of institutions. Famed Yippie actions included an “exorcism” and attempted levitation of the Pentagon and the guerrilla theater of Abbie Hoffman and other Yippies who dropped hundreds of dollar bills onto the New York Stock Exchange, effectively closing the floor as stockbrokers scrambled for the money. These well publicized comedic acts were deliberately intended to undermine the institutions they attacked.

Yippie activism captured perfectly the chaotic final years of the “movement,” as the New Left subsided into  factionalism and confusion over political objectives.

Their antics also contributed to the public’s widely held view that the  anti war movement was too countercultural, too radical.

In 1969 the deep divisions in SDS resulted in a convention that was so acrimonious that it “could hardly even agree upon a time to adjourn, much less an organization for revolution.”  SDS broke into two main factions, the Progressive Labor Party and the Weathermen, a self proclaimed radical group dedicated to fighting for the overthrow of American capitalism.

The Weathermen’s first declaration was that “the job of white Americans is to do anything they can in support of [revolutionary] struggles.”  Members of Weathermen contended that any efforts at organizing whites against their own perceived oppression were “attempts by whites to carve out even more privilege than they already derive from the imperialist nexus.” This sounds like the seeds of the contempt that the former anti war candidate, Hillary Clinton, showed unemployed coal miners and steel workers.

The white, mostly bourgeois, Weathermen found that the rest of the anti war movement failed to follow them. Despite their dwindling popularity, they somehow imagined that the urban communes they set up would become bases for organizing the would-be rank and file of the revolution, but predictably, they failed to rouse the proletariat.

Zimmerman, who came to view the Weathermen with contempt, believed that in order to make their movement grow they “had to make it easy for people to join us, not require them to carry foreign flags, risk arrest or adapt a militant posture toward a government many still considered their own.”

But the Weathermen were focused on demanding loyalty to itself.  New members were subjected to intense initiation rituals. Mass orgies entitled “smash monogamy” were scheduled with the intent of making the relationship with the group the only one that mattered.

With revolution rather than peace as its goal, the Weathermen turned to terrorism.  In 1969, the Weathermen issued a well-publicized call for a “fight the pigs” event in Chicago that the press dubbed “Days of Rage.” Two days prior to the protests, the group bombed the Haymarket Police statue. But the expected mobs of protestors failed to materialize.  A crowd of about 100 worked diligently to create chaos, but managed only to cause property damage and get arrested.

Frustrated, the Weathermen became increasingly violent. They built bombs to detonate at the sites of their purported oppressors. In March, 1970, a bomb meant for a dance at a nearby military base went off prematurely, blowing up their Greenwich Village town house, killing three and injuring two. At the time two additional bombs with 44 sticks of dynamite were defused with information provided by an undercover agent. The group ultimately set off about 25 bombs in various locations, including a nail bomb that killed a policeman. Historian Harvey Klehr writes that “the only reason they were not guilty of mass murder is mere incompetence.”

In September 1970, the Weathermen robbed a National Guard armory in Massachusetts stealing weapons and ammunition before setting fire to the armory. They used these weapons in a bank robbery during which they shot a police officer in the back. Three others were killed in a separate bank robbery.

Although the Weathermen diverted much of the anti war movement’s leadership, demonstrations against the war  continued, albeit on a more sporadic and spontaneous basis. In 1969, following the news of the1968 My Lai Massacre of 347 civilians, a broad based nationwide one day moratorium drew 500,000.

Then in 1970, the  invasion and bombing of Cambodia brought about large, violent and disorganized campus protests that resulted in the National Guard shooting into crowds of protestors, causing the deaths of 4 students at Kent State University and 2 at Jackson State University. Then again in 1971, demonstrations flared up after news broke of the invasion of Laos.

In part, organized demonstrations subsided in the wake of the departure of their far left organizers, and in part the movement lost its impetus when President Nixon and his defense Secretary, Melvin Laird, began to implement ‘Vietnamization,’ that is, the policy of transferring military operations from American troops to the South Vietnamese. Nixon gradually reduced the number of Americans in Vietnam until direct military involvement ended in 1973.

But the Weathermen remained energized throughout this period. They convened a  ‘war council’ in 1970 that issued a “Declaration of a State of War” against the US government.The council ended with a speech by John Jacobs who condemned the “pacifism” of white middle-class American youth (of which, of course, he was one). And declared that: “We’re against everything that’s ‘good and decent’ in honky America,…We will burn and loot and destroy.” The anti-White hatred reflected in Jacobs’ remarks was a central theme of the council. The Weathermen even debated whether killing White babies was a salutary revolutionary act.

The generally sympathetic documentary, “The Weather Underground” (the group’s name changed when their lawlessness forced them underground), portrays Weather members who put their lives on the line for peace and to oppose racism and who saw themselves as joining Black people and the Vietnamese in revolution. The Black Panthers, whose communal living facilities were dedicated to providing food and services to Black neighborhoods, shunned the Weathermen, calling the group’s  violence “stupid and unnecessary.”

Brian Flanagan, a rare working class member of the Weather Underground, and alone among the former members interviewed in the Documentary, compared the Weathermen to Islamist terrorists and to Timothy McVeigh, noting that all shared the conviction that their own knowledge of what was right for society entitled them to break laws, to kill, to engage in terrorism. “When you feel that you have right on your side,” he said, “you can do some pretty horrific things.” Others interviewed in the Documentary remain unapologetic, and do not seem to see that their actions failed to inspire political change or even to help bring an end to the war. Bill Ayers, one of the group’s “rich kid radicals” said in a 2001interview, “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.”

Many in this movement that had superseded the anti war movement and transformed it into a divisive, patronizing, violent, disruptive force were Jewish. Why? Mark Rudd  former leader of SDS at Columbia University and of the Weather Underground, addressed this question in a later essay. As he explains, although he was a third generation American, he grew up in an insular world where his “family carried the Jewish ghettos of Newark and Elizabeth with them to the suburbs.” He writes that his family was far from “assimilated, if that means replacing a Jewish identity with an American one.”

Rudd’s explanation for his political alienation is instructive.  “As a child I never fell for the seduction of patriotism. It seemed so arbitrary, who’s an American and who’s not. If my relatives hadn’t emigrated, who would I be? Since I was also at core an idealist and a utopian—another Jewish tradition?—I wanted to skip all that obviously stupid and dangerous stuff that gave rise to wars and racism.”

This is an astounding statement. He views being an American as the arbitrary result of immigration (although immigration was a purposeful event) and his Jewishness as an irreducible and positive trait. Then after speaking of the racism of his family (they moved out when Black families moved into their Newark neighborhood) he sees patriotism, a sentiment that presumably embraces all Americans including Blacks, as racist and treats his own membership in an insular racial group as “idealist and utopian.”

When Rudd entered Columbia he joined SDS where all of his mentors and friends, and indeed, most of the group, were Jewish. Rudd recalls many conversations with his Jewish comrades but never a conversation in which they  “discussed the fact that so many of us were Jewish. This glaring lack alone might serve as a clue to what we were up to: by being radicals we thought we could escape our Jewishness. Left-wing radicalism was internationalist, not narrow nationalist; it favored the oppressed and the workers, not the privileged and elites, which our families were striving toward.”

While Rudd may have wanted to escape his identity and become one with the ‘workers,’ it seems that the workers had no interest in his revolutionary politics. Gilad Atzmon points out in ‘Being In Time,’ that when ‘revolutionary’ Jews went to Spain to join the Civil War, they found themselves in an International Brigade that was 1/4 Jewish and Yiddish was the lingua franca. While they wanted, as Rudd did, to escape their identity and join the proletariat, they found themselves in a “Jewish ghetto, fighting Spanish patriots.” They might have identified with the working class, but they were not a part of that class.  Atzmon explains, “[t]he Red Jews who traveled to Spain ended up fighting in Jewish legions because ID politics and Left-orientation are largely a Jewish intellectual domain that is actually quite foreign to working people.”

Then, as if to illustrate his confusion, in Rudd’s next paragraph he switches to seeing the ‘revolution’ not as an escape from his identity but as an affirmation of it, stating: “Identifying with the oppressed seemed to me at Columbia and since a natural Jewish value. What outraged me and my comrades so much about Columbia, along with its hypocrisy, was that despite the large number of Jewish students the University had “the air of genteel civility. Or should I say gentile?”

Here is the part of the anti war movement that is in complete rebellion against all that is ‘goyim.’ And yet it is Archie Bunker who we hold out as a racist. But even the fictional ‘racist’ Archie didn’t leave his home when a Black family moved next door as Rudd’s family had. Atzmon notes that ‘All in the Family’ was itself subversive of working class values. Beginning in 1971 we watched Archie railing against his son-in-law who represented what we now call ‘political correctness.’  Our universal denigration of Archie became a part of our adoption of identity politics, that eschews bigotry yet divides society into groups based on inherited characteristics.

Rudd’s explanations for why so many in the radical anti war movement were Jewish seems to me to be incomplete. The movement never was ‘internationalist,’ as it failed to convince the working class to join nor did the movement help Rudd escape his Jewish identity, he consistently identified as Jewish and found much to criticize about goyim. There are a few other possible motives that might have contributed to the phenomenon he addresses.

First, the Jews were the vast majority of the intellectuals of the movement. By adopting radical politics that were frankly anti American the Jews (in the movement) were able to differentiate themselves and escape the company of the seemingly unwelcome ‘middle Americans’ (goyim). Instead they formed an elitist apparatus within the so-called radical left.

George Tyler writes in “Weather Underground:Driving down a Dead End Street,” “Many of the Weather Underground leaders are sons and daughters of wealthy families – prominent corporation executives, lawyers, etc. …The arrogance, elitism and impatience stemming from their class background was reflected in their politics.” Much as they claimed proletarian values, these SDS leaders were unable to compromise or work with their working class brethren. Their contempt for others is not unlike the latter day critique of the ‘basket of deplorables.’

In fact, some former members of SDS saw the Weathermen’s violence and attacks on the middle class as deliberately designed to destroy the anti war movement. Although perhaps not intentional, it was at a minimum predictable that the Weather Underground’s actions would be repellent to most.

Also, and perhaps relevant, the radical split off and effective weakening of the anti war movement occurred  after 1967, the year of the Six Day War after which a victorious Israel was viewed with pride by many diaspora Jews. The radical students seeking the oppressed to represent might well instead have chosen the Palestinians who had been uprooted by the Jewish state. Was some of their anger at America transferred from embarrassment at the land grab  by the Israelis and the creation of thousands more refugees? Or instead, did they sympathize with Israel and feel themselves even stronger when represented by a victorious state? In any case, these radicals who identified as Jewish were more interested in ‘fixing’ the United States than in ‘fixing’ Israel.

Whatever the motivation, it was the intellectual and largely Jewish members of SDS who formed the Weathermen whose violence kneecapped the anti war movement. While they saw those who did not join them as ‘complicit’ in ‘America’s crimes,’ they were at least as complicit in that they accomplished nothing except to hurt the anti war movement by association.

However upset the Weathermen claimed to have been by the millions of deaths in Vietnam, even today most show no regret for the deaths they caused. In listening to them it is clear that there never was an achievable goal in their calls for a total revolution without a map. Atzmon points out that, “[t]hey didn’t want to liberate America, they wanted to liberate themselves from themselves by being themselves. It didn’t work very well.”

In the years since, many of the Weathermen have emerged from hiding, and have as  Larry Grathwohl, writes in his memoir of his time as an undercover agent, “pulled off [one of] their most audacious feats: they negotiated a return to society, avoided legal consequences for their most serious crimes, and rose to influential positions in academia and politics – all without renouncing their anti-American ideology or apologizing for the acts of terrorism they committed against ordinary Americans.”

Sale concludes his history of the SDS narrative by pointing out SDS’ ‘salutary’ long term effects. “SDS taught the mechanics of political organizing and protest to an activist segment of the student population and restored the legitimacy of mass dissent to the national scene, leading eventually to such direct political consequences as liberalized laws (with respect, for example, to abortion, marijuana, homosexuality, community control, and the rights of blacks, women, and the young), the reorganization of the Democratic Party and the nomination of George McGovern, and the extension of suffrage to eighteen-year-olds.”

Perhaps it is the residue of the elitism of the SDS that has left the Democratic Party alienated from its former working class base.

US Global Power: The Trump Period, The End of Unipolarity

Global Research, May 02, 2019

Introduction

US global power in the Trump period reflects the continuities and changes which are unfolding rapidly and deeply throughout the world and which are affecting the position of Washington.

Assessing the dynamics of US global power is a complex problem which requires examining multiple dimensions.

We will proceed by:

  • Conceptualizing the principles which dictate empire building, specifically the power bases and the dynamic changes in relations and structures which shape the present and future position of the US.
  • Identifying the spheres of influence and power and their growth and decline.
  • Examining the regionsof conflict and contestation.
  • The major and secondary rivalries.
  • The stable and shifting relationsbetween existing and rising power centers.
  • The internal dynamics shaping the relative strength of competing centers of global power.
  • The instability of the regimes and states seeking to retain and expand global power.

Conceptualization of Global Power

US global power is built on several significant facts.  These include:  the US victory in World War II, its subsequent advanced economy and dominant military position throughout five continents.

The US advanced its dominance through a series of alliances in Europe via NATO; Asia via its hegemonic relationship with Japan, South Korea, Philippines and Taiwan as well as Australia and New Zealand in Oceana; Latin America via traditional client regimes; Africa via neo-colonial rulers imposed following independence.

US global power was built around encircling the USSR and China, undermining their economies and defeating their allies militarily via regional wars.

Post WWII global economic and military superiority created subordinated allies and established US global power, but it created the bases for gradual shifts in relations of dominance.

US global power was formidable but subject to economic and military changes over time and in space.

US Spheres of Power:  Then and Now

US global power exploited opportunities but also suffered military setbacks early on, particularly in Korea, Indo-China and Cuba. The US spheres of power were clearly in place in Western Europe and Latin America but was contested in Eastern Europe and Asia.

The most significant advance of US global power took place with the demise and disintegration of the USSR, the client states in Eastern Europe, as well as the transformation of China and Indo-China to capitalism during the 1980’s.

US ideologues declared the coming of a unipolar empire free of restraints and challenges to its global and regional power. The US turned to conquering peripheral adversaries.  Washington destroyed Yugoslavia and then Iraq – fragmenting them into mini-states. Wall Street promoted a multitude of multi-national corporations to invade China and Indo-China who reaped billions of profits exploiting cheap labor.

The believers of the enduring rule of US global power envisioned a century of US imperial rule.

In reality this was a short-sighted vision of a brief interlude.

The End of Unipolarity: New Rivalries and Global and Regional Centers of Power: An Overview

US global power led Washington into  ‘overreach’, in several crucial areas:  it launched a series of costly prolonged wars, specifically in Iraq and Afghanistan, which had three negative consequences:  the destruction of the Iraq armed forces and economy led to the rise of the Islamic State which overtook most of the country; the occupation in Afghanistan which led to the emergence of the Taliban and an ongoing twenty year war which cost hundreds of billions of dollars and several thousand wounded and dead US soldiers; as a result the majority of the US public turned negative toward wars and empire building

The US pillage and dominance of Russia ended, when President Putin replaced Yeltsin’s vassal state.  Russia rebuilt its industry, science, technology and military power.  Russia’s population recovered its living standards.

With Russian independence and advanced military weaponry, the US lost its unipolar  military power.  Nevertheless, Washington financed a coup which virtually annexed two thirds of the Ukraine.  The US incorporated the fragmented Yugoslavian ‘statelets’ into NATO.  Russia countered by annexing the Crimea and secured a mini-state adjacent Georgia.

China converted the economic invasion of US multi-national corporations into learning experiences for building its national economy and export platforms which contributed which led to its becoming an economic competitor and rival to the US.

US global empire building suffered important setbacks in Latin America resulting

from the  the so-called Washington Consensus.  The imposition of neo-liberal policies privatized and plundered their economies, impoverished the working and middle class, and provoked a series of popular uprising and the rise of radical social movements and center-left governments.

The US empire lost spheres of influence in some regions (China, Russia, Latin America, Middle East) though it retained influence among elites in contested regions and even launched new imperial wars in contested terrain.  Most notably the US attacked independent regimes in Libya, Syria, Venezuela, Somalia and Sudan via armed proxies.

The change from a unipolar to a multi polar world and the gradual emergence of regional rivals led US global strategists to rethink their strategy.  The Trump regime’s aggressive policies set the stage for political division within the regime and among allies.

The Obama – Trump Convergence and Differences on Empire Building

By the second decade of the 21stcentury several new global power alignments emerged:  China had become the main economic competitor for world power and Russia was the major military challenger to US military supremacy at the regional level.  The US replaced the former European colonial empire in Africa.  Washington’s sphere of influence extended especially in North and Sub Sahara Africa:  Kenya, Libya, Somalia and Ethiopia.  Trump gained leverage in the Middle East namely in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, and Jordan.

Israel retained its peculiar role, converting the US as its sphere of influence.

But the US  faced regional rivals for sphere of influence in Lebanon, Syria, Iran, Iraq and Algeria.

In South Asia US faced competition for spheres of influence from China, India, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

In Latin America sharp and abrupt shifts in spheres of influence were the norm.  US influence declined between 2000 – 2015 and recovered from 2015 to the  present.

Imperial Power Alignments Under President Trump

President Trump faced complex global, regional and local political and economic challenges.

Trump followed and deepened many of the policies launched by the Obama- Hillary Clinton policies with regard to other countries and regions . However Trump also radicalized and/or reversed policies of his predecessors. He combined flattery and aggression at the same time.

At no time did Trump recognize the limits of US global power.  Like the previous three presidents he persisted in the belief that the transitory period of a unipolar global empire could be re-imposed.

Toward Russia, a global competitor, Trump adopted a policy of ‘rollback’.  Trump imposed economic sanctions, with the strategic ‘hope’ that  by impoverishing Russia, degrading its financial and industrial sectors that he could force a regime change which would convert Moscow into a vassal state.

At the beginning of his Presidential campaign Trump flirted with the notion of a business accommodation with Putin. However, Trump’s ultra-belligerent appointments and domestic opposition soon turned him toward a highly militarized strategy, rejecting military – including nuclear – agreements, in favor of military escalation.

Toward China, Trump faced a dynamic and advancing technological competitor. Trump resorted to a ‘trade war’ that went far beyond ‘trade’ to encompass a war against Beijing’s economic structure and social relations.  The Trump regime-imposed sanctions and threatened a total boycott of Chinese exports.

Trump and his economic team demanded China privatize and denationalize its entire state backed industry.  They demanded the power to unilaterally decide when violations of US rules occurred and to be able to re-introduce sanctions without consultations.  Trump demanded all Chinese technological agreements, economic sectors and innovations were subject and open to US business interests.  In other words, Trump demanded the end of Chinese sovereignty and the reversal of the structural base for its global power.  The US was not interested in mere ‘trade’ – it wanted a return to imperial rule over a colonized China.

The Trump regime rejected negotiations and recognition of a shared power relation: it viewed its global rivals as potential clients.

Inevitably the Trump regime’s strategy would never reach any enduring agreements on any substantial issues under negotiations.  China has a successful strategy for global power built on a 6 trillion-dollar world-wide Road and Belt (R and B) development policy, which links 60 countries and several regions. R and B is building seaports, rail and air systems linking industries financed by development banks.

In contrast, the US banks exploits industry, speculates and operates within closed financial circuits.  The US spends trillions on wars, coups, sanctions and other parasitical activities which have nothing to do with economic competitiveness.

The Trump regime’s ‘allies’ in the Middle East namely Saudi Arabia and Israel, are parasitic allies who buy protection and provoke costly wars.

Europe complains about China’s increase in industrial exports and overlook imports of consumer goods.  Yet the EU plans to resist Trump’s sanctions which lead to a blind alley of stagnation!

Conclusion

The most recent period of the  peak of US global power, the decade between 1989-99 contained the seeds of its decline and the current resort to trade wars, sanctions and nuclear threats.

The structure of US global power changed over the past seven decades.  The US global empire building began with the US command over the rebuilding of Western European economies and the displacement of England, France, Portugal and Belgium from Asia and Africa.

The Empire spread and penetrated  South America via US multi-national corporations. However, US empire building was not a linear process as witness  its unsuccessful confrontation with national liberation movements in Korea, Indo China, Southern Africa (Angola, Congo, etc.) and the Caribbean (Cuba).  By the early 1960’s the US had displaced its European rivals and successfully incorporated them as subordinate allies.

Washington’s main rivals for spheres of influence was Communist China and the USSR with their allies among client state and overseas revolutionaries.

The US empire builders’ successes led to the transformation of their Communist and nationalist rivals into emergent capitalist competitors.

In a word US dominance led to the construction of capitalist rivals, especially China and Russia.

Subsequently, following US military defeats and prolonged wars, regional powers proliferated in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and Latin America. Regional blocs competed with US clients for power.

The diversification of power centers led to new and costly wars.  Washington lost exclusive control of markets, resources and alliances.  Competition reduced the spheres of US power.

In the face of these constraints on US global power the Trump regime envisioned a strategy to  recover  US dominance – ignoring the limited capacity and structure of US political , economic and class relations.

China absorbed US technology and went on to create new advances without following each previous stage.

Russia’s recovered from its losses and sanctions  and secured alternative trade relations to counter the new challenges to the US global empire.  Trump’s regime launched a ‘permanent trade war’ without stable allies. Moreover, he failed  to undermine China’s global infrastructure network; Europe demanded and secured autonomy to enter into trade deals with China, Iran and Russia.

Trump has pressured many regional powers who have ignored his threats.

The US still remains a global power.  But unlike the past, the US lacks the industrial base to ‘make America strong’.  Industry is subordinated to finance; technological innovations are not linked to skilled labor  to increase productivity.

Trump relies on sanctions and they have failed to undermine regional influentials.  Sanctions may temporarily reduce access to US markets’ but we have observed that new trade partners take their place.

Trump has gained client regimes in Latin America, but the gains are precarious and subject to reversal.

Under the Trump regime, big business and bankers have increased prices in the stock market and even the rate of growth of the  GDP, but he confronts severe domestic political instability, and high levels of turmoil among the branches of government.  In pursuit of loyalty over competence, Trump’s appointments have led to the ascendancy of cabinet officials who seek to wield unilateral power which the US no longer possesses.

Elliot Abrams can massacre a quarter-million Central Americans with impunity, but he has failed to impose US power over Venezuela and Cuba.  Pompeo can threaten North Kore, Iran and China but these countries fortify alliances with US rivals and competitors.  Bolton can advance the interests of Israel but their conversations take place in a telephone booth – it lacks resonance with any major powers.

Trump has won a presidential election, he has secured concessions from some countries but he has alienated regional and diplomatic allies.  Trump claims he is making America strong, but he has undermined lucrative strategic multi-lateral trade agreements.

US ‘Global Power’ does not prosper with bully-tactics.  Projections of power alone, have failed – they require recognition of realistic economic limitations and the losses from regional wars.

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Award winning author Prof. James Petras is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.

الفشل الأميركي: فنزويلا نموذجاً

مايو 1, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– كثيرون ينتظرون رؤية نتائج القرارات الأميركية الخاصة بالعقوبات على إيران، وكثيرون من الكثيرين يتوقعون فعالية هذه العقوبات، لأنهم لا يعتقدون أن أميركا تمزح ولا يتوقعون أن تخطئ. فتاريخ هذه الدولة العظمى خلال عقود مضت يقول إنها الدولة التي تعمل مؤسسات القرار فيها، خصوصاً عندما يتصل الأمر بالسياسات الخارجية، والمصالح العليا، بطريقة التحسب والاستباق وتعدد الفرضيات، وهي الدولة التي تملك من المقدرات والعقول والقدرة على تحليل الفرضيات، ما يتيح نسب خطأ شبه معدومة في مخططاتها ومخططاتها البديلة، وبدائل البدائل عند الضرورة. كما أنها الدولة التي تمسك بمفاصل حساسة وحاسمة في الحياة المالية والاقتصادية والأمنية والعسكرية والدبلوماسية على مساحة العالم.

– خسارة الحروب العسكرية ليست مقياساً كافياً برأي هؤلاء الكثيرين، للحكم على المقدرات والمخططات الأميركية، فلا فييتنام ولا العراق تكفيان للقول بالفشل أو التراجع الأميركيين، خصوصاً أن بمستطاع السياسات والخطط الأميركية البديلة احتواء الخسارة والفشل، ولذلك عند هؤلاء الكثيرين حروب الفوضى البناءة أو الحروب الناعمة أو حروب الوكالة هي علامات على تأكيد تواصل حبل القوة الأميركية، ولذلك صفقة القرن مقبلة، ولذلك الإعلانات الأميركية الداعمة لكيان الاحتلال في ما خصّ القدس والجولان ليست عبثاً، ولا هي مجرد حروب إعلامية بل تثبيت للكيان وتمهيد لحدوده التي سيضمنها سلام مقبل.

– قد يصعب إقناع هؤلاء الكثيرين بأن واشنطن تفقد سحرها، وأن حيوية القدرة الأميركية تتراجع، وأن العقول الأميركية لم تعد هي تلك التي كانت، وأن الروح قد أصيبت وتغيّرت أشياء كثيرة. فهؤلاء يرفضون التصديق أن أميركا بلغت الذروة في صعودها مع سقوط جدار برلين وانهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي، وأن الإمبراطوريات العظمى وفقاً لخبرة التاريخ، عندما تصل إلى الذورة في قمة الصعود وتبدأ بالتراجع فإن لا قعر لهذا التراجع ولا قيامة من بعده، وأن الفشل الأميركي في العراق هو غير الفشل في فييتنام لهذا السبب، أي لأنه الفشل اللاحق لبلوغ الذورة في الصعود، كمثل الفشل الإسرائيلي في حرب العام 1973 لكون الفشل الأول بعد ذروة الصعود في حرب العام 1967، فلم يأت بعده صعود وتواصل مسلسل الفشل من لبنان إلى غزة وهو مستمر في سورية ولبنان وفلسطين.

– حاولت أميركا بعد فشل العراق ترميم الفشل، وكانت حرب لبنان في 2006 فتعمّق الفشل بالفشل، ومن ثم بحروب غزة فزاد الفشل على الفشل، وجاءت مرحلة الأخونة والعثمانية الجديدة بمسمّى الربيع العربي فتوج الفشل بالفشل العظيم، وهي الآن تحاول تغطية الفشل المتراكم بالتعزية التي يقدّمها لها نظام العقوبات، لكنه يفشل أيضاً. وها هي فنزويلا القريبة جداً، والمحاصرة جداً، والمتعبة جداً، تستطيع أن تصمد وأن تقف على قدميها، ويظهر الانقلاب الذي دبرته واشنطن مع إعلانه الأول هزيلاً، ثم مع نسخة المنشطات المدبّرة بطبعة عسكرية للانقلاب، فيحصد الفشل على الفشل، والسبب ليس لأن أميركا ضعيفة، بل لأنها فاقدة للروح، وعندما تهزم الأمم في روحها لا تستطيع صناعة الانتصار ولو امتلكت المقدرات، بينما عندما تقاتل الشعوب الضعيفة بروحها فتنتصر حتى لو لم تمتلك المقدرات.

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