US-led Genocidal War and Destruction of Socialism: 20 Years after the NATO Bombing of Yugoslavia

Global Research, March 24, 2019

The NATO war on Yugoslavia which culminated in the 78-days bombing of historic cities and infrastructures – as usual under atrocity propaganda and pretexts – is on its 20th anniversary.

The grim anniversary is admirably recognized by Science for Peace members to remember and to prevent who-knows-what NATO war crime next as “humanitarian intervention”.
From Yugoslavia to Iraq to Libya, where does it stop? Observe that Trump is now seeking a NATO alliance with Bolsonaro Brazil (see image below)  -to perhaps back the bombing of Venezuela, or any other society, including the Brazilian people, not bowing to US-led global corporate colonization. Socialist genocide is the unspeakable logic of the serial war crimes under international law.

So it is important to remember the long war of economic and financial destabilization that occurred over years before and after the bombing to destroy federal Yugoslavia’s market socialism in every workers-control and social infrastructure it had evolved after 1945 to solve the endless Balkan ethnic wars of its past history.

This larger design is taboo to state – US-led genocide of any socialist society as covert state policy. Instead ‘freedom’ and ‘human rights’ is the reverse-mask every time which is relentlessly dinned into people’s heads. In this way, again and again, the non-stop succession of US international crimes under law is covered up into the present day. So too, federal Yugoslavia, once the envy of the world in democratic social progress, was destroyed step by step. Its bonding social infrastructures were dismantled by unceasing, all-fronts US financial war in which NATO bombing in 1999 was only the most evident event of the socialist genocide.

Repressed Witness of the Killing of a Multi-Cultural Socialism

Below are excerpts from Ottawa University Professor of Economics (emeritus) Michel Chossudovsky’s long-leading analysis which provides a minimalist through-line of the effectively genocidal war against all not-for-profit institutions of a socialist society in which Yugoslavia is a paradigm case. The selected text excerpts below are from Michel Chossudovsky’s 1996 article  (updated in 2002) published as a chapter in The Globalization of Poverty and the New World Order, Global Research, Montreal, 2003.

“As heavily-armed US and NATO troops enforced the peace in Bosnia, the press and politicians alike portrayed Western intervention in the former Yugoslavia as a noble response to an outbreak of ethnic massacres and human rights violations. In the wake of the November 1995 Dayton peace accords, the West was eager to touch up its self-portrait as savior of the Southern Slavs and get on with “the work of rebuilding” the newly ‘sovereign states.’

“But following a pattern set early on, the plight of the Balkans was promoted as the outcome of deep-seated ethnic and religious tensions rooted in history.1 Likewise, much was made of the “Balkans power-play” and the clash of political personalities: “Tudjman and Milosevic are tearing Bosnia-Herzegovina to pieces.

“Lost in the barrage of images and self-serving analyses are the economic and social causes of the conflict. The deep-seated economic crisis which preceded the civil war had long been forgotten. The strategic interests of Germany and the US in laying the groundwork for the disintegration of Yugoslavia go unmentioned, as does the role of external creditors and international financial institutions. In the eyes of the global media, Western powers bear no responsibility for the impoverishment and destruction of a nation of 24 million people. Thus Yugoslavia’s war-ravaged successor states are left to the mercies of the international ‘financial community’.

“As the world focused on troop movements and cease-fires, the international financial institutions were busily collecting former Yugoslavia’s external debt from its remnant states, while transforming the Balkans into a safe-haven for free enterprise. With a Bosnian peace settlement holding under NATO guns, the West had in late 1995 unveiled a “reconstruction” program that stripped that brutalized country of sovereignty to a degree not seen in Europe since the end of World War II.

The Genocide of Market Socialism

“The new ‘Constitution’ included as an Appendix to the Dayton Accords handed the reins of economic policy over to the Bretton Woods institutions and the London based European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). The IMF was empowered to appoint the first governor of the Bosnian Central Bank, who, like the High Representative, ‘shall not be a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina or a neighboring State. … it may not extend credit by creating money, operating in this respect as a currency board.’

“While the Central Bank was in IMF custody, the London-based EBRD heads the Commission on Public Corporations, which supervises since 1996, operations of all public sector enterprises in Bosnia, including energy, water, postal services, telecommunications, and transportation. The EBRD president appoints the commission chair and is in charge of public sector restructuring, i.e., the sell-off of state- and socially-owned assets and the procurement of long-term investment funds. Western creditors explicitly created the EBRD ‘to give a distinctively political dimension to lending.’

“As the West proclaimed its support for democracy, actual political power rests in the hands of a parallel Bosnian ‘state’ whose executive positions are held by non-citizens. Western creditors have embedded their interests in a constitution hastily written on their behalf. The neocolonization of Bosnia was a logical step of Western efforts to undo Yugoslavia’s experiment in ‘market socialism’ and workers’ self-management and to impose the dictate of the ‘free market’.

Yugoslavia’s Success before System Destabilization by US Financial War

“Multi-ethnic, socialist Yugoslavia was once a regional industrial power and economic success. In the two decades before 1980, annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaged 6.1 percent, medical care was free, the rate of literacy was 91 percent, and life expectancy was 72 years.11. But after a decade of Western economic ministrations and a decade of disintegration, war, boycott, and embargo, the economies of the former Yugoslavia were prostrate, their industrial sectors dismantled.

“Despite Belgrade’s non-alignment and its extensive trading relations with the European Community and the US, the Reagan administration had targeted the Yugoslav economy in a “Secret Sensitive” 1984 National Security Decision Directive (NSDD 133) entitled “US Policy towards Yugoslavia.” A censored version declassified in 1990 elaborated on NSDD 64 on Eastern Europe, issued in 1982. The latter advocated “expanded efforts to promote a ‘quiet revolution’ to overthrow Communist governments and parties,” while reintegrating the countries of Eastern Europe into a market-oriented economy.

“The US had earlier joined Belgrade’s other international creditors in imposing a first round of macroeconomics reform in 1980, shortly before the death of Marshall Tito. That initial round of restructuring set the pattern.

“Secessionist tendencies feeding on social and ethnic divisions, gained impetus precisely during a period of brutal impoverishment of the Yugoslav population. The economic reforms “wreaked economic and political havoc… Slower growth, the accumulation of foreign debt and especially the cost of servicing it as well as devaluation led to a fall in the standard of living of the average Yugoslav… The economic crisis threatened political stability … it also threatened to aggravate simmering ethnic tensions”.

“These reforms accompanied by the signing of debt restructuring agreements with the official and commercial creditors also served to weaken the institutions of the federal State creating political divisions between Belgrade and the governments of the Republics and Autonomous Provinces. A Reaganomics arsenal ruled. And throughout the 1980s, the IMF and World Bank periodically prescribed further doses as the Yugoslav economy slowly lapsed into a coma.

“From the outset, successive IMF sponsored programs hastened the disintegration of the Yugoslav industrial sector, lunging to zero in 1987-88 and to a negative 10 percent growth rate by 1990.15 This process was accompanied by the piecemeal dismantling of the Yugoslav welfare state, with all the predictable social consequences. Debt restructuring agreements, meanwhile, increased foreign debt, and a mandated currency devaluation also hit hard at Yugoslavs’ standard of living.

“Shock therapy” began in January 1990. Although inflation had eaten away at earnings, the IMF ordered that wages be frozen at their mid November 1989 levels. Prices continued to rise unabated, and real wages collapsed by 41 percent in the first six months of 1990 .17

“The IMF also effectively controlled the Yugoslav central bank. Its tight money policy further crippled the country’s ability to finance its economic and social programs. State revenues that should have gone as transfer payments to the republics went instead to service Belgrade’s debt with the Paris and London clubs. The republics were largely left to their own devices. The economic package was launched in January 1990 under an IMF Stand-by Arrangement (SBA) and a World Bank Structural Adjustment Loan (SAL II). The budget cuts requiring the redirection of federal revenues towards debt servicing, were conducive to the suspension of transfer payments by Belgrade to the governments of the Republics and Autonomous Provinces.

“In one fell swoop, the reformers had engineered the final collapse of Yugoslavia’s federal fiscal structure and mortally wounded its federal political institutions. By cutting the financial arteries between Belgrade and the republics, the reforms fueled secessionist tendencies that fed on economic factors as well as ethnic divisions, virtually ensuring the de facto secession of the republics. The IMF-induced budgetary crisis created an economic fait accompli that paved the way for Croatia’s and Slovenia’s formal secession in June 1991.

Crushed by the Invisible Hand

“The reforms demanded by Belgrade’s creditors also struck at the heart of Yugoslavia’s system of socially-owned and worker-managed enterprises. By 1990, the annual rate of growth of GDP had collapsed to -7.5 percent. In 1991, GDP declined by a further 15 percent, industrial output collapsed by 21 percent.19

“The restructuring program demanded by Belgrade’s creditors was intended to abrogate the system of socially owned enterprises. The Enterprise Law of 1989 required abolishing the “Basic Organizations of Associated Labor (BAOL)”. The latter were socially-owned productive units under self-management with the Workers’ Council constituting the main decision making body. The 1989 Enterprise Law required the transformation of the BOALs into private capitalist enterprises with the Worker’s Council replaced by a so-called “Social Board” under the control of the enterprise’s owners including its creditors.20

“The assault on the socialist economy also included a new banking law designed to trigger the liquidation of the socially-owned Associated Banks. Within two years, more than half the country’s banks had vanished, to be replaced by newly-formed “independent profit-oriented institutions.” 24 By 1990, the entire “three-tier banking system” consisting of the National Bank of Yugoslavia, the national banks of the eight Republics and autonomous provinces and the commercial banks had been dismantled under the guidance of the World Bank. A Federal Agency for Insurance and Bank Rehabilitation was established in June 1990 with a mandate to restructure and “reprivatize” restructured banks under World Bank supervision.25

“In less than two years the World Bank’s so-called “trigger mechanism” (under the Financial Operations Act) had led to the lay off of 614,000 (out of a total industrial workforce of the order of 2.7 million). The largest concentrations of bankrupt firms and lay-offs were in Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia and Kosovo.

“Many socially owned enterprises attempted to avoid bankruptcy through the non payment of wages. Half a million workers representing some 20 percent of the industrial labor force were not paid during the early months of 1990, in order to meet the demands of creditors under the “settlement” procedures stipulated in the Law on Financial Organizations. Real earnings were in a free fall, social programs had collapsed, with the bankruptcies of industrial enterprises, unemployment had become rampant, creating within the population an atmosphere of social despair and hopelessness

Shock Therapy to Take Over Natural Resources

“In the wake of the November 1995 Dayton Accords, Western creditors turned their attention to Yugoslavia’s “successor states”. Yugoslavia’s foreign debt had been carefully divided and allocated to the successor republics, which were strangled in separate debt rescheduling and structural adjustment agreements.46

“The consensus among donors and international agencies was that past IMF macroeconomics reforms inflicted on federal Yugoslavia had not quite met their goal and further shock therapy was required to restore “economic health” to Yugoslavia’s successor states. – – The neocolonial administration imposed under the Dayton accords and supported by NATO’s firepower had ensured that Bosnia’s future would be determined in Washington, Bonn, and Brussels rather than in Sarajevo.

“Western governments and corporations showed most interest in gaining access to strategic natural resources. With the discovery of energy reserves in the region, the partition of Bosnia between the Federation of Bosnia- Herzegovina and the Bosnian-Serb Republika Srpska under the Dayton Accords has taken on new strategic importance. Documents in the hands of Croatia and the Bosnian Serbs indicate that coal and oil deposits have been identified on the eastern slope of the Dinarides Thrust, retaken from Krajina Serbs by the US-backed Croatian army in the final offensives before the Dayton accords. Bosnian officials had reported that Chicago-based Amoco was among several foreign firms that subsequently initiated exploratory surveys in Bosnia.

“Substantial” petroleum fields also lie “in the Serb-held part of Croatia” just across the Sava River from Tuzla, the headquarters for the US military zone.55 Exploration operations went on during the war, but the World Bank and the multinationals that conducted the operations kept local governments in the dark, presumably to prevent them from acting to grab potentially valuable areas. 56

“With their attention devoted to debt repayment and potential energy bonanzas, both the US and Germany have devoted their efforts –with 70,000 NATO troops on hand to “enforce the peace – – – “.

History repeats itself in patterns not events.

The pattern of criminal US destabilization and destruction of social states to loot them of their sovereign resources is the unseen history of the last century of the world.

Yugoslavia provides the cornerstone example since the Nazis inside Europe with Ukraine taken down since in the same pattern still taboo to see.

US-led NATO is the transnational war machine of the world devouring all public wealth it can extort to terrorize all into conformity to the global-carcinomic regime. The NATO that bombed Yugoslavia 20 years ago and Iraq and Libya since is also the greatest polluter, waster, and destroyer of the global environment beneath all notice of it.

The US-NATO borderless armed-force maw invisibly leads the climate chaos upon us across continents. It is the greatest rising carbon spewer of all time, but not once mentioned even by the UN International Panel on Climate Change.

The US-led post-Nazi incubus of NATO may be the most wasteful black-hole despoliation of the earth and its future possibility ever, with oil its blood and mass-killing its method. Yet the official world remains blind to it in “we did not know” sanctimony and accusation all life resistance as the problem.

The twentieth anniversary of the US-led NATO bombing of Yugoslavia as NATO ‘humanitarian intervention’ should be a tragic self-recognition for the ages.

In this expanded and updated edition of Chossudovsky’s international best-seller, the author outlines the contours of a New World Order which feeds on human poverty and the destruction of the environment, generates social apartheid, encourages racism and ethnic strife and undermines the rights of women. The result as his detailed examples from all parts of the world show so convincingly, is a globalization of poverty.

Click to order Michel Chossudovsky’s Book directly from Global Research


This book is a skillful combination of lucid explanation and cogently argued critique of the fundamental directions in which our world is moving financially and economically.

In this new enlarged edition – which includes ten new chapters and a new introduction — the author reviews the causes and consequences of famine in Sub-Saharan Africa, the dramatic meltdown of financial markets, the demise of State social programs and the devastation resulting from corporate downsizing and trade liberalisation.

The original source of this article is Global Research

Hellbent: 78 Days of Bombing Yugoslavia

March 23, 2019


‫نصر الله يطلق المقاومة الوطنية للفساد


 السبت 9 آذار 2019

نصر الله يطلق المقاومة الوطنية للفساد

استغرب نصر الله عدم اعتبار أيٍّ من وزراء المال السابقين نفسه معنياً إلا واحداً وضع نفسه في قفص الاتهام (هيثم الموسوي)

رفع الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصر الله سقف المواجهة مع الفساد والمفسدين في الداخل اللبناني، مؤكّداً أن المقاومة لن تسمح بسقوط لبنان بعد الانتصار في الحرب على العدو الإسرائيلي والتكفيري. أما حرب العقوبات التي تخاض ضد كل حركات المقاومة، فأكد أن حزب الله لن يجوع ولن يفقر بل سيصمد بوجه الحرب الجديدة القديمة

قدّم الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصر الله، أمس، خطاباً مفصليّاً يشبه خطابات قائد المقاومة في لحظات الحروب العسكرية الفعلية، معلناً حرباً بلا هوادة ضد الفساد والمفسدين في لبنان، واستراتيجية لمواجهة العقوبات الأميركية الظالمة.

وشكّل الاحتفال بالذكرى الثلاثين لتأسيس هيئة دعم المقاومة الاسلامية مناسبة لنصر الله لطرح ملف العقوبات الأميركية والحصار المالي على «الحزب»، وملف مكافحة الفساد، مؤكّداً في الشق الأول أنّ «من المتوقع أن تشتد العقوبات على داعمينا (إيران وسوريا ومجمل حركات المقاومة) وعلينا». وأضاف أنه سنشهد إضافة المزيد من الأسماء إلى لائحة العقوبات، واستحداث لوائح إرهاب جديدة، «وعلينا أن نتوقع أن تقوم دول أخرى بنفس خطوة بريطانيا، وتصف حزب الله بأنّه منظمة إرهابية». كلّ هذه الأمور، هي «سياق متواصل، ومن مسؤولية أهل المقاومة التصدّي لها». ومن المهم بالنسبة إلى نصر الله فهم الموضوع في هذا الإطار (سياق متواصل)، «فمنذ عام 1982 إلى اليوم، تلحق بمشاريع الولايات المتحدة الأميركية و«اسرائيل» الهزائم». وما يتطلع إليه ترامب «وصهره كوشنير، في موضوع صفقة القرن، يقف في وجهه محور المقاومة، والشعب الفلسطيني بالدرجة الأولى». لذلك، حين «يتخذون بحقّنا إجراءات عقابية، فلأننا هزمناهم وكسرناهم وأسقطنا مشاريعهم. لأننا أقوياء. الاسرائيلي مرعوب وخائف من القيام بأي حرب. أمام الفشل والعجز عن الخيارات العسكرية، وعدم تحقيق العمليات الأمنية أهدافها، تأتي العقوبات. يجب أن نتعاطى معها كأنّنا في حرب».

وأوضح نصر الله أنّه «عندما نواجه بعض الصعوبات المالية، يجب أن يكون واضحاً أنّ ذلك جزء من الحرب، وليس خللاً أو نقصاً إدارياً». والحرب ليست على حزب الله وحده، فهناك أيضاً «تشديد عقوبات على إيران، وعلى سوريا، والحصار على الفلسطينيين، وتجويع الشعب اليمني، وتصنيف فصائل المقاومة العراقية إرهابية». ولكن، «يجب أن نبقى صامدين أقوياء. رغم كلّ شيء ستخيب آمالهم، ولن يتمكنوا لا من إفقارنا ولا من تجويعنا ولا من حصارنا. من يدعمنا مُستمر في دعمنا: دول، وشعوب، أو جمهور المقاومة في لبنان. نعم قد نواجه بعض الضيق، ولكن سنواصل، وبنيتنا ستبقى قوية، وستزداد عزماً وتأثيراً وصنعاً وفعلاً لمزيد من الانتصارات في المنطقة». وفي هذا الإطار، دعا نصر الله إلى تفعيل عمل هيئة دعم المقاومة الاسلامية: «نحتاج إلى التعاطف الأكبر من جديد».

من ناحية أخرى، نفى نصر الله ما يُحكى عن نيّة حزب الله الاستفادة من أموال وزارة الصحة لتعويض الحصار المالي، «فموقفنا الشرعي من مال الدولة واضح، وأكثر وزارة ندعو إلى أن تكون تحت الرقابة هي وزارة الصحة». وفي موضوع مكافحة الفساد، وأمام الهجمة الإعلامية التي تحاول تشويه موقف الحزب من تلك القضية، أوضح نصر الله أنّ حزب الله اعتبر عام 2018 «أننا أمام واجب ديني وأخلاقي ووطني وإنساني. لا نقدر أن نقف متفرجين، حتى لا يزعل فلان، ونترك بلدنا يسير نحو الانهيار. بناءً عليه، نحن نعتبر أنفسنا في معركة مهمة جداً، وجهادية أيضاً، لا تقل قداسة وأهمية عن معركة المقاومة ضدّ الاحتلال والمشروع الصهيوني في المنطقة». أما لماذا فتح ملف الفساد الآن؟ فلأنّه في «السابق لم يكن الوضع خطيراً إلى حدّ تهديد وجود الدولة».

وأكّد أنّها ليست معركة شعبوية، «نحن نمتلك أكبر شعبية في لبنان، ونتائج الانتخابات واضحة. بالعكس، في بعض الأحيان، المعركة ضدّ الفساد ستُخسّرنا على الصعيد الشعبي». والبعض اعتبر أنّ الهدف هو الانتقام السياسي، «ولكن ما كنا دعمنا حكومة وحدة وطنية بمشاركة الجميع». ما يهمّ حزب الله هو «أن يعود المال المهدور من الدولة إلى الدولة. لسنا في منافسة مع أحد في هذه المعركة، ولا نرضى أن ندخل في مزايدة». لذلك، أي فريق لديه أدلة ومستندات على ملفات فساد وهدر مالي «فليتقدّم بها إلى القضاء نحن معه وندعمه. كلّ من يحمل راية معركة الفساد نقبل به قائداً وجاهزون لأن نكون عنده جنوداً. لا نخاف أن نكون وحدنا، ولكن الصحيح أن نكون معركة وطنية جامعة».

يُدرك نصر الله أنّه في هذه المعركة «سيقف الفاسدون في لبنان، والسارقون والناهبون، وكلّ من يُفكر في نهب المال العام في لبنان، للدفاع عن النفس». وإضافةً إلى «تلقّينا كمّاً هائلاً من الشتائم، وتحويل المعركة على الفساد إلى مسار آخر، لحماية فاسدين مفترضين»، دعا نصر الله إلى «عدم المراهنة على تعبنا، فنحن ما تعبنا من معركة المقاومة منذ الـ 1982 حتى اليوم. لن نيأس ولن نُحبط. نعرف أننا أمام معركة طويلة وصعبة»، مُتحدّياً «من لديه أي ملف أو تهمة فساد عن حزب الله أو أحد أعضائه، فليتفضل إلى القضاء. نحن ماضون إلى النهاية، يُمكنكم أن تتوقعوا من حزب الله كلّ شيء في هذه المعركة».

بداية المعركة كانت من ملف الحسابات المالية للدولة منذ الـ1993 حتى الـ2017، «لأنّه المكان الصحيح للبداية. هذا الملف هو مفتاح الإصلاح في الدولة، إذا لم يُعالج فكلّ الإجراءات الأخرى لن تنجح. وإذا قبل حزب الله أن تتم التسوية فيه، يكون حزباً منافقاً وكاذباً. بدأت من حزب الله وهذا ينطبق على كلّ من يُفكر في دفع الملف إلى تسويات على حساب المال العام».

وذكّر نصر الله بأنّ أول من أثار الملف هو الرئيس ميشال عون يوم كان رئيساً للتيار الوطني الحرّ، ثمّ أصبح هناك قانون في مجلس النواب، و«أتت وزارة المال لتُطبقه من خلال إنجاز الحسابات». ما قام به حزب الله «أننا سلّطنا الضوء بقوة، وقلنا لدينا بعض المستندات وعجّلنا في الذهاب بها إلى القضاء»، داعياً إلى أن يُضاف إلى الملف القضائي المؤتمر الصحافي للمدير العام للمالية ألان بيفاني». واستغرب نصر الله عدم اعتبار أي من وزراء المال السابقين نفسه معنياً، «إلا واحداً وضع نفسه في قفص الاتهام. والآن بدل الذهاب إلى الشتائم والاستفزاز، اذهبوا إلى القضاء. سنُتابع القضاء، وسنرى كيف سيواجه. لا نريد أحكاماً مسبقة. ولا نُطلق أحكاماً مسبقة. ولكن القضاء يجب أن يكون مقنعاً».
الملف الثاني الذي أثاره حزب الله هو «الاقتراض غير المجدي، وقرض الـ400 مليون دولار، ففي النهاية الشعب سيدفع الـ400 مليون وفوائده من جيبه وتعبه ولقمة عيشه». ووعد نصر الله بالمزيد من الملفات، «حين يكون لدينا ملف مع معطيات نذهب إلى فتحه. وأعتقد أنّ هناك نتائج مهمة تحققت». من هذه النتائج أنّ «لبنان، أكثر من أي زمن، فيه إجماع وطني على مكافحة الفساد والهدر المالي. المجلس النيابي أصرّ منذ يومين على الموازنة. الوقوف في وجه بعض القروض غير المجدية. شطب مئات المليارات من الإنفاق غير المجدي. حالياً، الكل مدعوّ إلى العمل. ويجب ألا نكتفي بتقديم اقتراحات قوانين، الوزارات في الحكومة فلتعمل وتدعم القوى السياسية لتنفيذ المعركة».

«الجهاد بالمال»

بدأ الأمين العام لحزب الله كلمته، خلال الاحتفال بالذكرى الثلاثين لتأسيس هيئة دعم المقاومة الاسلامية، باستذكار الذين بادروا إلى «القيام بهذا العمل المبارك والعظيم، خصوصاً حين كانت المقاومة في بداياتها، قليلة الامكانات. بذلوا جهودهم، وقاموا بكلّ النشاط اللازم، لجمع المال والدعم، لتتعاظم المقاومة وتنتصر».
وتوجه بالشكر «إلى المسؤولين في الهيئة، أخصّ بالذكر المجاهد حسين الشامي. وأخصّ بالذكر الأخوات العزيزات اللواتي يُشكلن الجزء الأكبر من هيئة الدعم ويُمارسن العمل الأوسع في الهيئة». وشكر أيضاً «كلّ الذين قدّموا الدعم من خلالكم أو مباشرة، والمتبرعين الذين ما بخلوا بالمال». البعض يعتقد أنّ الدعم الذي تتلقاه المقاومة «يقتصر على بعض الأصدقاء، كالجمهورية الإسلامية في إيران. ولكن هناك مساحة كبيرة تعتمد على دعم الناس، الدعم المبارك». وقال إنّ من «أهم ما شكلته هيئة الدعم، هو الفرصة لتوسيع الجهاد. وهناك الجهاد بالمال، الذي تحتاج إليه أي مقاومة».

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Leaked Doc Reveals US Military Use of IMF, World Bank as “Unconventional” Weapons

By Whitney Webb

This “U.S. coup manual,” recently highlighted by WikiLeaks, serves as a reminder that the so-called “independence” of such financial institutions as The World Bank and IMF is an illusion and that they are among the many “financial weapons” regularly used by the U.S. government to bend countries to its will.

WASHINGTON – In a leaked military manual on “unconventional warfare” recently highlighted by WikiLeaks, the U.S. Army states that major global financial institutions — such as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) — are used as unconventional, financial “weapons in times of conflict up to and including large-scale general war,” as well as in leveraging “the policies and cooperation of state governments.”

The document, officially titled “Field Manual (FM) 3-05.130, Army Special Operations Forces Unconventional Warfare” and originally written in September 2008, was recently highlighted by WikiLeaks on Twitter in light of recent events in Venezuela as well as the years-long, U.S.-led economic siege of that country through sanctions and other means of economic warfare. Though the document has generated new interest in recent days, it had originally been released by WikiLeaks in December 2008 and has been described as the military’s “regime change handbook.”

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WikiLeaks’ recent tweets on the subject drew attention to a single section of the 248-page-long document, titled “Financial Instrument of U.S. National Power and Unconventional Warfare.” This section in particular notes that the U.S. government applies “unilateral and indirect financial power through persuasive influence to international and domestic financial institutions regarding availability and terms of loans, grants, or other financial assistance to foreign state and nonstate actors,” and specifically names the World Bank, IMF and The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), as well as the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), as “U.S. diplomatic-financial venues to accomplish” such goals.

The manual also touts the “state manipulation of tax and interest rates” along with other “legal and bureaucratic measures” to “open, modify or close financial flows” and further states that the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) – which oversees U.S. sanctions on other nations, like Venezuela — “has a long history of conducting economic warfare valuable to any ARSOF [Army Special Operations Forces] UW [Unconventional Warfare] campaign.”

This section of the manual goes on to note that these financial weapons can be used by the U.S. military to create “financial incentives or disincentives to persuade adversaries, allies and surrogates to modify their behavior at the theater strategic, operational, and tactical levels” and that such unconventional warfare campaigns are highly coordinated with the State Department and the Intelligence Community in determining “which elements of the human terrain in UWOA [Unconventional Warfare Operations Area] are most susceptible to financial engagement.”

The role of these “independent” international financial institutions as extensions of U.S. imperial power is elaborated elsewhere in the manual and several of these institutions are described in detail in an appendix to the manual titled “The Financial Instrument of National Power.” Notably, the World Bank and the IMF are listed as both Financial Instruments and Diplomatic Instruments of U.S. National Power as well as integral parts of what the manual calls the “current global governance system.”

Furthermore, the manual states that the U.S. military “understand[s] that properly integrated manipulation of economic power can and should be a component of UW,” meaning that these weapons are a regular feature of unconventional warfare campaigns waged by the United States.

Another point of interest is that these financial weapons are largely governed by the National Security Council (NSC), which is currently headed by John Bolton. The document notes that the NSC “has primary responsibility for the integration of the economic and military instruments of national power abroad.”

“Independent” but controlled

Though the unconventional warfare manual is notable for stating so openly that “independent” financial institutions like the World Bank and the IMF are essentially extensions of U.S. government power, analysts have noted for decades that these institutions have consistently pushed U.S. geopolitical goals abroad.

Indeed, the myth of World Bank and IMF “independence” is quickly eroded by merely looking at the structure and funding of each institution. In the case of the World Bank, the institution is located in Washington and the organization’s president has always been a U.S. citizen chosen directly by the president of the United States. In the World Bank’s entire history, the institution’s Board of Governors has never rejected Washington’s pick.

This past Monday, it was reported that President Donald Trump nominated former Bear Stearns economist David Malpass to lead the World Bank. Malpass had famously failed to foresee the destruction of his former employer during the 2008 financial crisis and is likely to limit World Bank loans to China and to countries allied or allying with China, given his well-established reputation as a China hawk.

In addition to choosing its president, the U.S. is also the bank’s largest shareholder, making it the only member nation to have veto rights. Indeed, as the leaked unconventional warfare manual notes, “As major decisions require an 85% supermajority, the United States can block any major changes” to World Bank policy or the services it offers. Furthermore, the U.S. Treasury Secretary, former Goldman Sachs banker and “foreclosure king,” Steve Mnuchin, functions as the World Bank’s governor.

Though the IMF is different from the World Bank in several respects, such as its stated mission and focus, it too is largely dominated by U.S. government influence and funding. For instance, the IMF is also based in Washington and the U.S. is the company’s largest shareholder — the largest by far, owning 17.46 percent of the institution – and also pays the largest quota for the institution’s maintenance, paying $164 billion in IMF financial commitments annually. Though the U.S. does not choose the IMF’s top executive, it uses its privileged position as the institution’s largest funder to control IMF policy by threatening to withhold its IMF funding if the institution does not abide by Washington’s demands.

World Bank IMF | Protest

As a consequence of the lopsided influence of the U.S. on these institutions’ behavior, these organizations have used their loans and grants to “trap” nations in debt and have imposed “structural adjustment” programs on these debt-saddled governments that result in the mass privatization of state assets, deregulation, and austerity that routinely benefit foreign corporations over local economies. Frequently, these very institutions – by pressuring countries to deregulate their financial sector and through corrupt dealings with state actors – bring about the very economic problems that they then swoop in to “fix.”

Guaidó hits up IMF

Given the close relationship between the U.S. government and these international financial institutions, it should come as little surprise that – in Venezuela – the U.S.-backed “interim president” Juan Guaidó – has already requested IMF funds, and thus IMF-controlled debt, to fund his parallel government.

This is highly significant because it shows that top among Guaidó’s objectives, in addition to privatizing Venezuela’s massive oil reserves, is to again shackle the country to the U.S.-controlled debt machine.

As the Grayzone Project recently noted:

Venezuela’s previous elected socialist president, Hugo Chávez, broke ties with the IMF and World Bank, which he noted were “dominated by US imperialism.” Instead Venezuela and other left-wing governments in Latin America worked together to co-found the Bank of the South, as a counterbalance to the IMF and World Bank.”

However, Venezuela is far from the only country in Latin America being targeted by these financial weapons masquerading as “independent” financial institutions. For instance, Ecuador – whose current president has sought to bring the country back into Washington’s good graces – has gone so far as to conduct an “audit” of its asylum of journalist and WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange in order to win a $10 billion bailout from the IMF. Ecuador granted Assange asylum in 2012 and the U.S. has fervently sought his extradition for still sealed charges ever since.

In addition, last July, the U.S. threatened Ecuador with “punishing trade measures” if it introduced a measure at the UN to support breastfeeding over infant formula, in a move that stunned the international community but laid bare the willingness of the U.S. government to use “economic weapons” against Latin American nations.

Beyond Ecuador, other recent targets of massive IMF and World Bank “warfare” include Argentina, which awarded the largest IMF bailout loan in history just last year. That loan package was, unsurprisingly, heavily pushed by the U.S., according to a statement from Treasury Secretary Mnuchin released last year. Notably, the IMF was instrumental in causing the complete collapse of the Argentinian economy in 2001, sending a poor omen for last year’s approval of the record loan package.

Though it was released over a decade ago, this “U.S. coup manual” recently highlighted by WikiLeaks serves as a salient reminder that the so-called “independence” of these financial institutions is an illusion and that they are among the many “financial weapons” regularly used by the U.S. government to bend countries to its will and even overthrow U.S.-disfavored governments.

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