THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN SUNNIS AND SHIITES AGREE IN LEBANON

Photograph by Nathaniel St. Clair

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BY GABRIEL ROCKHILL

“The U.S. has established itself as the mortal enemy of all people’s government, all scientific-socialist mobilization of consciousness everywhere on the globe, all anti-imperialist activity on earth.”

– George Jackson

One of the founding myths of the contemporary Western European and American world is that fascism was defeated in WWII by liberal democracies, and particularly by the United States. With the subsequent Nuremburg trials and the patient construction of a liberal world order, a bulwark was erected—in fits and starts, and with the constant threat of regression—against fascism and its evil twin in the East. American culture industries have rehearsed this narrative ad nauseum, brewing it into a saccharine ideological Kool-Aid and piping it into every household, shack and street corner with a TV or smartphone, tirelessly juxtaposing the supreme evil of Nazism to the freedom and prosperity of liberal democracy.

The material record suggests, however, that this narrative is actually based on a false antagonism, and that a paradigm shift is necessary in order to understand the history of actually existing liberalism and fascism. The latter, as we shall see, far from being eradicated at the end of WWII, was actually repurposed, or rather redeployed, to serve its primary historical function: to destroy godless communism and its threat to the capitalist civilizing mission. Since the colonial projects of Hitler and Mussolini had become so brazen and erratic, as they shifted from playing more or less by the liberal rules of the game to openly breaking them and then running amok, it was understood that the best way to construct the fascist international was to do so under liberal cover, meaning through clandestine operations that maintained a liberal façade. While this probably sounds like hyperbole to those whose understanding of history has been formatted by bourgeois social science, which focuses almost exclusively on visible government and the aforementioned liberal cover, the history of the invisible government of the national security apparatus suggests that fascism, far from being defeated in WWII, was successfully internationalized.

The Architects of the Fascist International

When the United States entered WWII, the future head of the CIA, Allen Dulles, bemoaned that his country was fighting the wrong enemy. The Nazis, as he explained, were pro-capitalist Aryan Christians, whereas the true enemy was godless communism and its resolute anti-capitalism. After all, the U.S. had, only some 20 years prior, been part of a massive military intervention in the U.S.S.R., when fourteen capitalist countries sought—in the words of Winston Churchill—to “strangle the Bolshevik baby in its crib.” Dulles understood, like many of his colleagues in the U.S. government, that what would later become known as the Cold War was actually the old war, as Michael Parenti has convincingly argued: the one they had been fighting against communism since its inception.

Towards the end of WWII, General Karl Wolff, formerly Himmler’s right-hand man, went to see Allen Dulles in Zurich, where he was working for the Office of Strategic Services, the predecessor organization to the CIA. Wolff knew that the war was lost, and he wanted to avoid being brought to justice. Dulles, for his part, wanted the Nazis in Italy under Wolff’s command to lay down their arms against the allies and help the Americans in their fight against communism. Wolff, who was the highest-ranking SS officer to survive the war, offered Dulles the promise of developing, with his Nazi team, an intelligence network against Stalin. It was agreed that the general who had played a central role in overseeing the Nazi’s genocidal machine, and who expressed his “special joy” when he secured freight trains to send 5,000 Jews a day to Treblinka, would be protected by the future director of the CIA, who helped him avoid the Nuremberg trials.

Wolff was very far from being the only senior Nazi official protected and rehabilitated by the OSS-CIA. The case of Reinhard Gehlen is particularly telling. This general in the Third Reich had been in charge of Fremde Heere Ost, the Nazi intelligence service directed against the Soviets. After the war, he was recruited by the OSS-CIA and met with all of the major architects of the postwar National Security State: Allen Dulles, William Donovan, Frank Wisner, President Truman. He was then appointed to head the first German intelligence service after the war, and he proceeded to employ many of his Nazi collaborators. The Gehlen Organization, as it was known, would become the nucleus of the German intelligence service. It is unclear how many war criminals this decorated Nazi hired, but Eric Lichtblau estimates that some four thousand Nazi agents were integrated into the network overseen by the American spy agency. With an annual funding of half a million dollars from the CIA in the early years after the war, Gehlen and his strong men were able to act with impunity. Yvonnick Denoël explained this turnaround with remarkable clarity: “It is hard to understand that, as early as 1945, the army and the US intelligence services recruited without qualms former Nazi criminals. The equation was, however, very simple at the time: the United States had just defeated the Nazis with the help of the Soviets. They henceforth planned to defeat the Soviets with the help of former Nazis.”

The situation was similar in Italy because Dulles’ agreement with Wolff was part of a larger undertaking, called Operation Sunrise, which mobilized Nazis and fascists to end the Second World War in Italy (and begin the Third World War across the globe). Dulles worked hand in hand with the Agency’s future chief counterintelligence officer, James Angleton, who was then stationed by the OSS in Italy. These two men, who would become two of the most powerful political actors of the twentieth century, showed what they were capable of in this close collaboration between the American intelligence services, the Nazis and the fascists. Angleton, on his end, recruited fascists to end the war in Italy so as to minimize the power of the communists. Valerio Borghese was one of his key contacts because this hardline fascist in Mussolini’s regime was ready to serve the Americans in the anti-communist struggle, and he became one of the international figureheads for postwar fascism. Angleton had directly saved him from the hands of the communists, and the man known as the Black Prince was given the opportunity to continue the war against the radical Left under a new boss: the CIA.

Once the war was over, Senior U.S. intelligence officials, including Dulles, Wisner and Carmel Offie, “worked to ensure that denazification only had a limited scope,” according to Frédéric Charpier: “Generals, senior officials, policemen, industrialists, lawyers, economists, diplomats, scholars and real war criminals were spared and put back in their positions.” The man in charge of the Marshall Plan in Germany, for instance, was a former adviser to Hermann Göring, the commander-in-chief of the Luftwaffe (air force). Dulles drafted a list of high functionaries of the Nazi state to be protected and passed off as opponents to Hitler. The OSS-CIA proceeded to rebuild the administrative states in Germany and Italy with their anti-communist allies.

Eric Lichtblau estimates that more than 10,000 Nazis were able to immigrate to the United States in the post-war period (at least 700 official members of the Nazi party had been allowed into the U.S. in the 1930s, while Jewish refugees were being turned away). In addition to a few hundred German spies and thousands of SS personnel, Operation Paperclip, which began in May 1945, brought at least 1,600 Nazi scientists to the U.S. with their families. This undertaking was aimed at recovering the great minds of the Nazi war machine and putting their research on rockets, aviation, biological and chemical weapons, and so forth, in the service of the American empire. The Joint Intelligence Objectives Agency was set up specifically to recruit Nazis and find them positions in research centers, the government, the army, the intelligence services or universities (at least 14 universities participated, including Cornell, Yale and MIT).

Although the program officially excluded ardent Nazis, at least at the beginning, in actual fact it allowed for the immigration of chemists from IG Farben (which had supplied the deadly gases used in mass exterminations), scientists who had used slaves in concentration camps to make weapons, and doctors who had participated in hideous experiments on Jews, Roma, communists, homosexuals and other prisoners of war. These scientists, who were described by an official in the State Department opposed to Paperclip as “Hitler’s angels of death,” were received with open arms in the land of the free. They were given comfortable accommodations, a laboratory with assistants and the promise of citizenship if their work bore fruit. They went on to conduct research that has been used in the manufacturing of ballistic missiles, sarin gas cluster bombs, and the weaponization of the bubonic plague.

The CIA also collaborated with MI6 to set up secret anti-communist armies in every country in Western Europe. On the pretext of a potential invasion by the Red Army, the idea was to train and equip networks of illegal stay-behind soldiers, who would remain behind enemy lines if the Russians moved westward. They would thus be activated in the newly occupied territory and charged with missions of exfiltration, espionage, sabotage, propaganda, subversion and combat. The two agencies worked with NATO and the intelligence services of many Western European countries to build this vast sub-rosa organization, establish numerous weapons and ammunition caches, and equip their soldiers of the shadows with everything they needed. To do this, they recruited Nazis, fascists, collaborationists and other anti-communist members of the extreme Right. The numbers vary according to the country, but they are estimated between a few dozen and several hundred, or even a few thousand, per country. According to a report from the television program Retour aux sources, there were 50 stay-behind network units in Norway, 150 in Germany, more than 600 in Italy and 3,000 in France.

These trained militants would later be mobilized to commit or coordinate terrorist attacks against the civilian population, which were then blamed on the communists in order to justify ‘law and order’ crackdowns. According to the official numbers in Italy, where this strategy of tension was particularly intense, there were 14,591 politically motivated acts of violence between 1969 and 1987, which killed 491 people and injured 1,181. Vincenzo Vinciguerra, a member of the far-right group Ordine Nuovo and the perpetrator of the bombing near Peteano in 1972, explained that the fascist “Avanguardia Nazionale, like Ordine Nuovo, were being mobilized into the battle as part of an anti-Communist strategy originating not with organizations deviant from the institutions of power, but from the state itself, and specifically from within the ambit of the state’s relations within the Atlantic Alliance.” An Italian parliamentary commission that undertook an investigation of the stay-behind armies in Italy, reached the following conclusion in 2000: “Those massacres, those bombs, those military actions had been organized or promoted or supported by men inside Italian state institutions and, as has been discovered more recently, by men linked to the structures of United States intelligence.”

The U.S. National Security State was also involved in overseeing ratlines that exfiltrated fascists from Europe and allowed them to resettle in safe havens around the world, in exchange for doing its dirty work. The case of Klaus Barbie is but one among thousands, but it speaks volumes regarding the internal functioning of this process. Known in France as ‘the butcher of Lyon,’ he was head of the Gestapo office there for two years, including the time when Himmler gave the order to deport at least 22,000 Jews from France. This specialist in ‘enhanced interrogation tactics,’ known for torturing to death the coordinator of the French Resistance, Jean Moulin, organized the first roundup of the General Union of Jews in France in February 1943 and the massacre of 41 Jewish refugee children in Izieu in April 1944. Before arriving in Lyon, he had led savage death squads, which had killed more than a million people on the Eastern Front according to Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair. But after the war, the man whom these same authors describe as third on the most-wanted list of SS criminals was working for the Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC) of the U.S. Army. He was hired to help build the stay-behind armies by recruiting other Nazis, and to spy on French intelligence services in the French and American controlled regions in Germany.

When France learned what was happening and demanded Barbie’s extradition, John McCloy, the U.S. High Commissioner of Germany, refused by claiming that the allegations were based on hearsay. Nevertheless, it ultimately proved too expensive, symbolically, to keep a butcher like Barbie in Europe, so he was sent to Latin America in 1951, where he was able to continue his illustrious career. Settling in Bolivia, he worked for the security forces of the military dictatorship of General René Barrientos and for the Ministry of the Interior and the counter-insurgency wing of the Bolivian Army under the dictatorship of Hugo Banzer, before actively participating in the Cocaine Coup in 1980 and becoming the director of security forces under General Meza. Throughout his career, he maintained close relationships with his saviors in the U.S. National Security State, playing a central role in Operation Condor, the counter-insurgency project that brought together Latin American dictatorships, with the support of the United States, to violently crush any attempt at egalitarian uprisings from below. He also helped develop the drug empire in Bolivia, including organizing gangs of narco-mercenaries whom he named Los novios de la muerte, whose uniforms resembled those of the SS. He traveled freely in the 1960s and 1970s, visiting the U.S. at least seven times, and he most likely played a role in the manhunt organized by the Agency to kill Ernesto “Che” Guevara.

The same basic pattern of integrating fascists into the global war against communism is readily identifiable in Japan, whose system of government prior to and during the war has been described by Herbert P. Bix as “Emperor-system fascism.” Tessa Morris-Suzuki has convincingly demonstrated the continuity of intelligence services by detailing how the U.S. National Security State oversaw and managed the KATO organization. This private intelligence network, very much like the Gehlen organization, was stocked with former leading members of the military and intelligence services, including the Imperial Army’s Chief of Intelligence (Arisue Seizō), who shared with his American handler (Charles Willoughby) a deep admiration for Mussolini. The U.S. occupation forces also cultivated tight relationships with senior officials in Japan’s wartime civilian intelligence community (most notably Ogata Taketora). This remarkable continuity between prewar and postwar Japan has led Morris-Suzuki and other scholars to map Japanese history in terms of a transwar regime, meaning one that continued from before to after the war. This concept also allows us to make sense of what was happening above ground in the realm of the visible government. For the sake of concision, suffice it to cite the remarkable case of the man known as the “Devil of Shōwa” for his brutal rule of Manchukuo (the Japanese colony in Northeast China): Nobusuke Kishi. A great admirer of Nazi Germany, Kishi was appointed Minister of Munitions by Prime Minister Hideki Tojo in 1941, in order to prepare Japan for a total war against the U.S., and he was the one who signed the official declaration of war against America. After serving a brief prison term as a war criminal in the postwar era, he was rehabilitated by the CIA, along with his cell mate, the kingpin of organized crime Yoshio Kodama. Kishi, with the support and generous financial backing of his handlers, took over the Liberal Party, made it into a rightwing club of former leaders of imperial Japan, and rose to become Prime Minister. “The [CIA] money flowed for at least fifteen years, under four American presidents,” writes Tim Wiener, “and it helped consolidate one-party rule in Japan for the rest of the cold war.”

U.S. national security services have also established a global educational network to train pro-capitalist combatants—sometimes under the leadership of experienced Nazis and fascists—in the tried-and-true techniques of repression, torture and destabilization, as well as propaganda and psychological warfare. The famous School of the Americas was established in 1946 with the explicit goal of training a new generation of anti-communist warriors worldwide. According to some, this school has the distinction of having educated the greatest number of dictators in world history. Whatever the case may be, it is part of a much larger institutional network. It is worth mentioning, for example, the educational contributions of the Public Safety Program: “For about twenty-five years,” writes former CIA officer John Stockwell, “the CIA, […] trained and organized police and paramilitary officers from around the world in techniques of population control, repression, and torture. Schools were set up in the United States, Panama, and Asia, from which tens of thousands graduated. In some cases, former Nazi officers from Hitler’s Third Reich were used as instructors.”

Fascism Goes Global under Liberal Cover

The American imperium has thus played a central role in the construction of a fascist international by protecting right-wing militants and enlisting them in the Third World War against ‘communism,’ an elastic label extended to any political orientation that entered into conflict with the interests of the capitalist ruling class. This international expansion of fascist modes of governance has led to a proliferation of concentration camps, terrorist and torture campaigns, dirty wars, dictatorial regimes, vigilante groups and organized crime networks around the world. The examples could be enumerated ad nauseum, but I will curtail them in the interests of space and simply invoke the testimony of Victor Marchetti, who was a senior CIA official from 1955 to 1969: “We were supporting every half-assed dictator, military junta, oligarchy that existed in the Third World, as long as they promised to somehow maintain the status quo, which would of course be beneficial to U.S. geopolitical interests, military interests, big business interests, and other special interests.”

The record of U.S. foreign policy since WWII is probably the best measure of its unique contribution to the internationalization of fascism. Under the banner of democracy and freedom, the United States has, according to William Blum:

+ Endeavored to overthrow more than 50 foreign governments.

+ Grossly interfered in democratic elections in at least 30 countries.

+ Attempted to assassinate more than 50 foreign leaders.

+ Dropped bombs on the people of more than 30 countries.

+ Attempted to suppress a populist or nationalist movement in 20 countries.

The Association for Responsible Dissent, composed of 14 former CIA officers, calculated that their agency was responsible for killing a minimum of 6 million people in 3,000 major operations and 10,000 minor operations between 1947 and 1987. These are direct murders, so the numbers do not account for premature deaths under the fascist-backed capitalist world system due to mass incarceration, torture, malnutrition, lack of drinkable water, exploitation, oppression, social degradation, ecological illness or curable disease (in 2017, according to the U.N., 6.3 million children and young adolescents died from avoidable causes linked to the socio-economic and ecological inequalities of the Capitalocene, which amounts to one child dying every 5 seconds).

To establish itself as the global military hegemon and international guard dog of capitalism, the U.S. government and National Security State have relied on the help of the significant number of Nazis and fascists it integrated into its global network of repression, including the 1,600 Nazis brought into the U.S. through Operation Paperclip, the 4,000 or so integrated into the Gehlen organization, the tens or even hundreds of thousands that were reintegrated into the ‘postwar’—or rather transwar—regimes in fascist countries, the large number who were given free passage to Empire’s backyard—Latin America—and elsewhere, as well as the thousands or tens of thousands integrated into NATO’s secret stay-behind armies. This global network of seasoned anti-communist assassins has also been used to train armies of terrorists around the world to participate in dirty wars, coups d’état, destabilization efforts, sabotage, and terror campaigns.

All of this has been done under the cover of a liberal democracy, and with the assistance of its powerful culture industries. The true legacy of WWII, far from being that of a liberal world order that had defeated fascism, is that of a veritable fascist international developed under liberal cover in order to try and destroy those who had actually fought and won the war against fascism: the communists.

Gabriel Rockhill is a Franco-American philosopher, cultural critic and activist. He the founding Director of the Critical Theory Workshop and Professor of Philosophy at Villanova University. His books include Counter-History of the Present: Untimely Interrogations into Globalization, Technology, Democracy (2017), Interventions in Contemporary Thought: History, Politics, Aesthetics (2016), Radical History & the Politics of Art (2014) and Logique de l’histoire (2010). In addition to his scholarly work, he has been actively engaged in extra-academic activities in the art and activist worlds, as well as a regular contributor to public intellectual debate. Follow on twitter: @GabrielRockhill

Weekend Edition
October 16, 2020
Friday – SundayGABRIEL ROCKHILL
The U.S. Did Not Defeat Fascism in WWII, It Discretely Internationalized ItPAUL STREET
The Coup Already UnderwayEVE OTTENBERG
How Trust in a Covid Vaccine ErodedJEFFREY ST. CLAIR
Roaming Charges: Pray, Grin and BarrettROB URIE
Who Elected Donald Trump?RICHARD D. WOLFF
How Fascism Has Converged With Capitalism to Redefine GovernmentMEDEA BENJAMIN – NICOLAS J. S. DAVIES
Trump’s Endless WarsISHMAEL REED
The Tragedy of Stanley CrouchJOSEPH NATOLI
Our Territory is Fractal, Our Mapping HyperrealJOHN HORNING
Compassion, Wolves and America’s First WildernessANDREW LEVINE
Pack the Damn Court, JoeW. T. WHITNEY
Medical Doctors Seek Social and Political Solutions for COVID 19 CrisisREV. WILLIAM ALBERTS
Why Pray for the Renewed Health of a Tyrant Who will Merely Continue to Lie and Harm People?JAMES HALBROOK
I Witnessed an Eco-CrimeLOUIS PROYECT
Can an Eco-Socialist Revolution Save China?PAUL EDWARDS
Emma Goldman and Lesser EvilismJEFF MACKLER
Fact-Checking the Liars: the Record of U.S. Imperial War and PlunderKATIE BILODEAU
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Weekly China Newsbrief and Sitrep

Weekly China Newsbrief and Sitrep

September 16, 2020

By Godfree Roberts selected from his extensive weekly newsletter : Here Comes China

This week’s selection includes a separate explanation on just how the Chinese Communist Party and Government operates.  For those that visit these weekly Sitreps to learn, this may put an end to the regular discussion items of just how bad the CCP is.  You did know that China has six political parties, did you?  The people that I’ve consulted say the following:  China’s system works for China.  We do not suggest you adopt our system, so, there is no reason for you to insist we adopt yours.

From a regular Twitter Feed by ShangaiPanda, here is how it actually works, by meritocracy.  What this means is that Xi Jinping for example already had 40 years experience in governing, before he was both selected, and elected to his position.

From Godfree’s newsletter which is just brimming with interesting items this week, we’ve selected items about:

  • space,
  • Islam, communism and the BRI,
  • trade war and trade deficit,
  • and a highly educational piece by ‘Chairman Rabbit’, who analyses America from a Chinese perspective.

On studying China it is good to remember that unlike many other countries, China as a country holds together from two perspectives, a long lasting civilizational unity, as well as a sovereign state.


 Space – high technology that is green technology

China has safely landed a reusable spacecraft which it claims will provide a “convenient and inexpensive” method of getting to and from space. The craft launched on September 4th and landed on September 6th after spending two days in orbit, according to the state-run Xinhua News Agency. Very little is known about the spacecraft, including even its basic design. There are no picture or renders of the craft, but there have been rumors it is a spaceplane similar to the Air Force’s X-37B. A Chinese military source told the South China Morning Post they could not provide details on the mission but that “maybe you can take a look at the US X-37B.”[MORE]

Islam, Communism and the BRI

The significance of having 52 Muslim countries (37.6%) that comprise 87.5 per cent of World Muslims in the BRI alliance, is not lost on the United States and its allies who are not particularly pro-Islam, which may explain their sudden interest to ‘care’ about the plight of Muslims in Xinjiang! Soon after the Bolshevik uprisings, Communism and Islam seemed destined to liberate the Muslim world from European Imperialism, but that was not to be due to their ideological differences. This presented an opportunity to the United States and its allies, where they coopted anti-Communist Jihadism to disrupt Communism.  This had the unintended consequence of being the impetus for China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which presented the U.S. and its allies with new challenges.

Soon after the Bolshevik revolution of 1917, Communism and Islam were the impetus for revolutions against European imperialism in Egypt, Iraq, India, Caucasus and Central Asia, and the Indonesian Archipelago. However, divergent views about Communism proved divisive among Muslims (who are also quite divergent in their theological interpretations of Islam) and this quasi- ideological alliance was all over by the onset of the Cold War.  Those irrevocable divisions may have been due to the essence of Islam’s socio-economic and political system.  It is more consultative (‘Shoura’ or democratic theocracy) and entrepreneurial in nature, which is more compatible with social democracy and capitalism, than with communism’s autocratic state planned economy.

The other reason for such failure is the proactive role of the United States (and some Western Europeans, like Britain and France) in using Christian missionaries and NGOs in intelligence gathering while spreading Christianity in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and South America. In the 1970s, it was revealed that the CIA sponsored missionaries in Kerala and Nagaland to not only block the advance of Communism in India, but also to establish sufficient tensions between India and China and prevent any regional stability that continues to our present day.

In the 1980s, the CIA’s material support to the Afghan Mujahideen (and by default the Afghan Arabs, like Osama Bin Laden and his followers, who were rounded up from the different Arab and Muslim countries by their intelligence services and sent to Afghanistan, via Pakistan for their paramilitary training by the ISI, in the hope that they would never come back) only exacerbated extremist violence ever since. In the 1990s, the predominantly Muslim former Soviet Republics of Central Asia; Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and other Islamic countries like Afghanistan and Pakistan opened their doors to Saudi-sponsored Wahhabi Islam (probably with the ‘blessings’ of the CIA).

This resulted in an upsurge of Islamist fundamentalism and separatist movements in central Asia, like al-Qaeda affiliated Turkestan Islamic Party(TIP), Hizb ut-Tahrir (HuT) and Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI), which have presented a challenge to China and others in the region. Since the rise of anti-Communist Jihadism in the 1980s and its coopetition by the Anglo-Americans to disrupting Communism ever since may have been the impetus for China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The $8 trillion investment by China in its bold, innovative and strategic Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) alliances with 138 countries comprising 51.7% of world GDP offers an infrastructure backbone of maritime, land and digital trade alliances. The BRI alliances represent 4.8 billion people (61.7%) of the world population.  Of which an estimated 1.4 billion (29.2%) identify as Muslim and are part of the 52 member countries of the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC), including all 22 Arab countries.

China’s BRI strategic alliances with Arabic and Muslim countries can only help neutralise the existential threat of global Islamist fundamentalism in the long-term by spreading economic prosperity and alleviating poverty. Also, it will not only bring prosperity and stability to China’s underdeveloped north-western part (Xinjiang holds 1.33% of China’s population and contributes 1.35% to China’s GDP), but also to (its ideological partner in the new world order) Russia, and other BRI partners on its western border.

Coupled with technological innovations in global cross-border trade and finance, the BRI projects would no doubt accelerate global economic growth and revive China’s historical legacy in boosting entrepreneurships without compromising necessary protections of the weak. Those infrastructure-driven alliances are building a global community with a shared future for mankind.  This is so important at a time when our world is divided by poverty, crippling national debts and the rise of ultra-nationalism.

The clash of civilizations, anti-(Muslim)-refugees’ sentiment and Islamophobia are just symptoms of the rise in white supremacism and alt-right extremism sweeping the Anglo-American and European nations. Those groups subscribe to a conspiracy theory of cultural and population replacement or nativism, where white European populations are being replaced with non-Europeans (predominantly Muslim Arabs from Syria and elsewhere) due to the complicity of ‘replacist’ elites.

For example, the ‘Génération Identitaire’ (GI) movement in France, which considers itself a ‘defender’ of the European civilization has affiliated youth groups in Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Slovenia and the United Kingdom.  This heightened sense of ultra-nationalism is driving Western democratic politics away from economic concerns, in favour of issues related to culture and identity. No doubt, Anglo-American and European anxieties about China’s technological, economic and geopolitical dominance may be rooted in their innate fears about being displaced by an Asian culture and the potential spread of Socialism with Chinese characteristics to the 138 countries that joined the BRI alliances, after having spent a good part of over 70 years fighting Communism.

America’s continued rise as a world power—from the 1890s through the Cold War—and its bid to extend its hegemony deep into the twenty-first century through a fusion of cyberwar, space warfare, trade pacts, and military alliances – is now limited by the reality that it has to dismantle China’s BRI alliances as it did to the USSR. This is why the ‘five eyes’ alliance is going on the offensive with (a) sanctions and visa restrictions for Chinese officials, (b) bans on China’s technological 5G innovations (Huawei, Tik Tok and WeChat under the guise of ‘National Security’ concerns), (c) tariffs trade wars, and (d) a particular focus on ‘human rights’ in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.

The significance of having 52 Muslim countries (37.6%) that comprise 87.5 per cent of World Muslims in the BRI alliance, is not lost on the United States and its allies who are not particularly pro-Islam, which may explain their sudden interest to ‘care’ about the plight of Muslims in Xinjiang! Thus, it is not unreasonable to conclude that the sole purpose of those disruptive policies by the “five-eyes” alliance is to intensify the global anti-China sentiment that is already aggravated due to COVID-19, and to inflame Muslim sentiment in particular, so as to torpedo China’s largest economic and geopolitical Belt and Road alliances.[MORE] [George Mickhail is an LSE trained academic and a geopolitical risk analyst with 30 years’ experience in major global accounting firms and business schools.]

Trade War and Trade Deficit

The US trade deficit with China widened in July – an embarrassing situation for President Trump, who Taiwan’s Liberty Times said had been left  with a ‘green face’ (a crude expression that makes plain this is a bad outcome for him). When the US President campaigned four years ago, he strongly accused China of seizing American wealth in what he hailed as “the biggest theft in history.” After his election, he maintained this position against China. However, the latest data will hardly please him. The United States had a $31.6 billion trade deficit with China in July, which was an 11.5% increase from June. The paper noted that before the outbreak of the coronavirus, the US trade deficit with China was narrowing, but it has gradually expanded since the epidemic spread. Data released by the US Census Bureau on Thursday showed that the trade deficit with China in Q2 increased by 36.8% compared to Q1. The deficit in July was 4.36% larger than that in July 2016.[MORE]

‘Chairman Rabbit’ Analyzes America

Editor’s Note: Tu Zhuxi (Chairman Rabbit) is the nom de plume of Ren Yi, a Harvard-educated Chinese blogger who has amassed more than 1.6 million followers on Weibo who seek out his political commentary, much of which falls under a genre we might facetiously call “America-watching.” 

Today, I scrolled through the interview Professor Ezra Feivel Vogel gave with the Global Times: “90 year-old Professor Vogel: Unfortunately, there is a possibility of armed confrontation between the United States and China.” The veteran professor—who has researched China and East Asia all his life and promoted the development of ties between the United States and China—conveyed intense unease after witnessing two years of sharp downturn in Sino-U.S. relations under the Trump Administration. He could not bear not to air his concerns. 

This interview comes at an opportune time. As you can see, I have excerpted a short comment from the interview. This excerpt perfectly echoes the content I have wanted to expand on these last two days:

Vogel: There is a new article in the Atlantic magazine by James Fallows that gives the most comprehensive explanation of what has happened. And it clearly is the Trump administration.

Before the coronavirus, there had been plans in earlier administrations for dealing with an epidemic. We had a good overall plan. Trump did not use those plans at all. He even acted when he first heard about the coronavirus pandemic as if there was not a big problem. So things were delayed. It clearly is Trump’s responsibility.

At the time of writing, the United States has around 3.8 million confirmed cumulative cases, 140,000 deaths, and a daily increase of about 64 thousand cases. The diagnosis of experts and intellectuals around the United States: this is all due to the Trump Administration.

First of all, the United States’ so-called “good overall plan” for epidemic response was targeted towards a type of infectious disease that resembles the flu in infectiousness, hazard, and lethality. The United States after all has quite a few documentaries and special television programming about pandemics, and every year in every corner of the country drills are held about pandemics, but all of these were with the assumptions of a flu-like disease. COVID-19 was not within the expectations of an American plan for epidemic response, and indeed was beyond the response plan of every country in regard to an infectious disease with respiratory transmission. COVID-19 is an especially potent epidemic, a disease with an extraordinarily high death rate. The epidemic response plan that the United States currently had in place was entirely insufficient for COVID-19. Dr. Anthony Fauci brought up this topic several times in the last few months, especially in the early stages of the epidemic: the American system and design is either insufficient or entirely ineffectual against COVID-19. Dr. Fauci was speaking only from the standpoint of public hygiene and healthcare system and his analysis did not broaden past these considerations.

I have been following the news, media, and commentaries of the U.S. right and left. Criticisms of the epidemic response have generally been from Democratic Party, anti-Trump, and/or liberal-aligned intellectuals. Even after several months, I have rarely encountered essays or discussions that analyze in-depth the full extent of the difficulties facing the U.S. COVID-19 response by synthesizing broader observations on the nation’s political system, society, governance, culture, and economy.

Basically, all the analyses have taken the question and subsumed it under the issue of “political leadership”—usually pointing towards the President, the White House, and state governors. The majority of these analyses lay blame onto the very person of Trump.

Basically, all the analyses have taken the question and subsumed it under the issue of “political leadership”—usually pointing towards the President, the White House, and state governors. The majority of these analyses lay blame onto the very person of Trump.

According to this logic, the reason for the U.S.’s weak response to the epidemic is Trump and Trump alone. If only there was only another person in charge, the U.S. could have defeated COVID-19.

Readers who follow me should know my methods well: I have always begun my analyses from a sociological point of view. How could the U.S. use influenza as the primary lens to understand COVID-19, and how did this understanding influence the U.S.’s subsequent responsive actions? I have since wrote many essays on this topic, for example my April 1st, 2020 essay: “Can the United States Shut Down Entire Cities and Thoroughly Practice Social Distancing Like China? A Discussion of American Exceptionalism” (link in Chinese).

In that piece, I argue that due to the U.S. political and legal system, enacting a comprehensive and stringent social distancing program, including measures such as quarantining cities, is simply not possible.

In the next few months, I will continue my analysis and extend towards the political level. Not too long ago, I collected a few writings into this listicle: “13 Reasons for the Ineffectual Response towards COVID-19 of the United States and ‘Society Construction’ During an Epidemic” (link in Chinese).

I summarized thirteen reasons for the U.S.’s weak response to the epidemic:

  1. Government system: the separation of powers between the federal, state, and local governments
  2. Government system: the separation of powers between the legislative, executive, and judiciary bodies
  3. Wide racial and class disparities
  4. A culture that understands individualism as a cardinal virtue, even to the point of opposing social or collective interests
  5. An overwhelmingly one-sided emphasis on political and civil rights
  6. “Gun culture”: the spirit of Manifest Destiny, rugged individualism, and militarism
  7. “Bible culture” and anti-intellectualism
  8. A pluralistic society without common understanding or consensuses
  9. A government and media that intensifies rather than ameliorates social tensions
  10. A values system that does not respect the elderly and does not assign elders special protections
  11. Family structures which are not suited to fighting against COVID-19
  12. The precarious economic situation of the United States’ middle and lower classes (like walking on a tightrope, i.e. living from paycheck to paycheck or credit problems)
  13. Other cultural factors, such as resistance against wearing masks

There are certainly many more reasons than the ones I have listed. But what I wish to express is that the U.S.’s weak response to the epidemic is the combined result of political, legal, social, cultural, economic, and other factors. The White House, as one of the holders of broad public authority (the executive section of the federal government), has in fact significantly limited power over this broader structural context.

The U.S. cannot manage stringent social distancing, large-scale quarantines of cities, nor restrictions on interstate travel. Health QR codes on mobile devices are entirely impossible with citizens’ insistence on privacy protections. A vast society led primarily by individualism and anti-intellectualism can hardly speak of epidemic management. These factors are not problems that can be resolved with the changing of a president. I believe that even if it were Obama, Hillary, or Biden as president, they would not be able to reverse the tide of the battle against COVID-19, even if they would be slightly more effective—for instance if they had taken the initiative and emphasized the importance of masks. This is because fighting an epidemic does not depend on the lobbying or practices of a president, but rather on the public health and prevention system of an entire country, one which from top to bottom must act in unity and move together. Public authority must comprehensively, effectively, and consistently implement policies (such that each locality will not have its own variant policies), and also cannot allow any level of the judiciary to interfere in the problems of any level of government. On the balance between citizen and society, preparations must absolutely be made to cede rights to the collective. “Political and civil rights” must in these times yield way.

The very design of U.S. political and legal institutions is meant to inhibit collective rights. Balance of powers is at the core of American governance. Political and civil rights are the bedrock of American political values. To deny these values equates to the very denial of the U.S.’s fundamental being.

The very design of U.S. political and legal institutions is meant to inhibit collective rights.

Therefore, to take the U.S.’s weak response to the epidemic and shove it at “political leadership” and at the feet of Trump is not merely skin-deep, but avoids the real problem and focuses on easy answers. It is simply not looking at the substance of the situation.

For several months I have followed U.S. political commentaries on the left and right, and I can confirm I have not seen any analysis of depth. The overwhelming majority of analyses are overly narrow and concrete, pointing at an individual perhaps. Rare is the person who can leap outside the U.S. political structure and carry out a detailed assessment from a third point-of-view. Why? I summarize two reasons:

(1) Americans are sort of like the baffled participant in a game; sometimes the onlookers see more of the game than the players. Americans honestly believe that the American system is exceptional, the best in the world. This is an earnest and steadfast faith, an authentic “self-confidence in path, self-confidence in principles, self-confidence in system, self-confidence in culture” [the “Four Self-Confidences” of Xi Jinping Thought]. They simply cannot bring themselves to doubt or oppose the American system. Since the American system is perfect, once the epidemic creates problems, by the process of elimination, Americans reason that the problem must stem only from electing the right or wrong politician. From this line of thought, pick out the one who has the most power: this is Trump’s fault. After him, perhaps we blame the governor of Florida, DeSantis. This is about as deep as the majority of Americans introspect.

(2) Criticizing the American system is a serious political error. It’s taboo. This is because it is anti-American, “unpatriotic,” “un-American.” It is a stance that doubts the very foundations of the United States. So when there is an elephant in the room in regards to the American system, everybody can see it but dare not speak up. I believe that the majority of people do not even see this elephant in the room because they have been so thoroughly brainwashed by the perfection of the American system. It is only a minority of people who can see this. These people very well could be Democrats or liberal intellectuals. This small number of people aware of reality cannot point out the elephant, however, even if they can see it. This is because pointing it out cannot change the situation on the ground, yet will still result in censure and criticism. One would rather polish a cannonball and lob it at Trump.

In summary, if we compare China with the United States, we would discover an interesting phenomenon.

When Chinese people criticize, they are accustomed to focusing criticisms on the system. “Systemic problem.” “Systemic-ism .” Even though there are indeed problems at the individual level, these problems are thoroughly rooted in the larger system. “Because the system produced this type of person,” “because the system could not restrain or check this particular person.” At any rate, any analysis fundamentally leads back to systemic problems.

When American people criticize, it is focusing the problem onto the physical body of an individual politician. It is not the system at fault, because the system is already perfect or close to perfect, so it can only be a problem birthed from the politician: this pundit’s personality is bad, their abilities did not cut it. All criticisms are of this sort. With that, if an impotent pundit is continuously elected or re-elected—for instance if Trump is re-elected, then this is a problem of the voters. But at this time, the analysis simply cannot proceed further. In the calculus of American political values, the political values of every person are equal: one cannot belittle the voters. In 2016 during the presidential race, Hillary Clinton belittled Trump’s supporters and faced an overwhelmingly negative backlash, costing her the ultimate price (this could perhaps be why she lost the presidential race). What is left then is to criticize the political influence of the media, campaign funding, and interest groups. But even here the analysis must end. Within the proscribed limits of the dialogue, it is easy to enter into another level of analysis—for example, could it be that the U.S. electoral system has fundamental faults? If one gets to this level, it touches upon the very body of U.S. democracy and its electoral system. One would be entering a live mine zone, teetering on the edge of political error.

In this sort of environment, Americans naturally will avoid hard problems and search for easy answers. They will not explore systemic problems, but rather focus their entire attention on electoral solutions.

Under this existing electoral process, one can only, perhaps, push their preferred candidate onto the political stage and wish only for their own candidate to ascend to the office, so that in the next few years that candidate can advance their own political programs and thereby protect the interests of the candidate’s supporters. In this sort of environment, Americans naturally will avoid hard problems and search for easy answers. They will not explore systemic problems, but rather focus their entire attention on electoral solutions.

Therefore, American politics are entirely driven by the short-term. They will look at long-term problems as a certainty before avoiding them, exerting only in order to resolve short-term problems. Even though there are scholars and intellectuals who can produce long-term analyses of wide historical and societal scale, this sort of analysis remains locked in the library and Ivory Towers, away from the stain of political practice.

The American “Revolution”

In the week after the conclusion of the 2016 election in the United States, Democratic primary candidate Bernie Sanders published his book Our Revolution. As everybody knows, 2016 was the contest between Trump and Clinton. Yet Bernie Sanders was the more extreme, more left (called a “socialist”) candidate of the Democratic Party, who was ultimately knocked out by the mainstream Clinton in the primaries. But he retains many fans among the Democratic Party’s “progressive wing”, including many youth. In his book, he introduced his thoughts as well as his explanations and analyses on all sorts of issues of the day, including the wealth gap, race relations, environmental problems, healthcare problems, the problem of media and interest groups binding politics, gender pay disparity, and the problem of Wall Street and big corporations.

Sanders’ diagnosis of American problems intersects with Trump: it is only that while Sander’s target audience was quite broad (for example, minorities, vulnerable groups, and women), Trump’s was much more parochial. On similar problems, Trump would provide right-wing resolutions to his limited audience of voters, but Sanders provided left-wing resolutions to his broad audiences—because of this, he was smeared as a “socialist”. Of course, during Sander’s entire campaign, there remained an unspeakable doubt: that is, can a big-city Jewish American ‘elite’ from Brooklyn, New York actually win the votes to be elected as President of the United States? This same problem may apply to Michael Bloomberg. To date, it seems this question answers in the negative.

But I do not wish to talk about Sanders’ propositions or ethnicity, but rather his slogan: “Our Revolution”.

“Our Revolution” has now become a left-wing action organization with roots in the 2016 Bernie Sanders campaign, and it continues to organize movements within the Democratic Party and in other broader social contexts.

“Our Revolution” has three key actions: “Win on our issues,” “Transform the Democratic Party,” and “Elect progressives up and down the ballot.”

It is of note that Sanders is the most mainstream American politician to date to support the idea of a revolution. However, what I wish to point out to Chinese readers is that this concept of “revolution” is nothing more than propagating his own thoughts and policy proposals to a wider audience, in order to get his own people elected and achieve electoral success himself.

People more familiar with Chinese political discourse should know the difference between “revolution” and “reform.”

Revolution is overturning and starting over again: toppling the old system and the old order, and constructing a new system. Revolution is often violent, of great force, compelled, and refuses to abide by the present system. From the standpoint of Marxism, revolution is class struggle, a fiery worker’s movement. From the standpoint of Leninism, it is a violent movement. From the standpoint of Mao Zedong:

“A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another.”

In the Chinese context, and indeed in the majority of cultural and social contexts, “revolution” is an intense action: revolution demands the overthrowing of the present system. Abiding by the present system, or moving within the current system and order, can only be reform.

But it is different in the United States. In the United States, challenging and overthrowing the system is taboo. It is simply impossible. This is because the American system is considered sacred, perfect. It is only particular individuals who have problems, only particular problems that cannot be handled well. The system itself has no problems. Therefore, all actions can only be carried out within the purview of what the system allows. The only path is by election—use a successful election to construct the starting point and foundations of societal change.

The American system is considered sacred, perfect. It is only particular individuals who have problems, only particular problems that cannot be handled well. The system itself has no problems.

Because of this, in the political rhetoric of Bernie Sanders, we see not a radical revolution or transformation, but a complete obedience to the American system. Due to the American people’s 100% approval and obedience to the system, any possibilities that people may have substantive critique or doubts vis-à-vis the system are cut off, and no action can be taken. The American system has completely limited their space for movement. Even “radicals” similarly can only raise high the banner of the American system, and can only work and influence society within designated limits: by pushing their own candidates in elections.

A few weeks ago, the police brutality case of George Floyd caused massive numbers of Americans to take to the streets and protest without ceasing.

Yet have we seen any protestor put out protest against the very structure of America’s political system, institutions, and government? Will there be any person who comes and burn the Constitution? Burn the American flag? Will there be any person who will put forth concrete plans of actions towards subversion?

There wasn’t any. The protestors could only protest a few “conditions.” Each path towards resolution is diverted back into elections.

The United States uses the separation of powers mechanism to spread the vast majority of social contradictions among the politicians of the various local jurisdictions. Through the possibility of election, in order to resolve these contradictions, the people complain while pointing at the politicians, not the institutions themselves. In the end, the people believe they hold the power and can influence politics through the vote, carrying on their lives under this sort of hope.

The most awe-inspiring politics indeed is this: one in which people believe they have the power and thus maintain steadfast hope in the future, while at the same time changing nothing about the current situation.

A few weeks ago, when riots erupted all around the United States, Secretary of State Pompeo could still proudly boast and simultaneously demean China: Wehave freedom of assembly, expression, and freedom to protest.

The American system has already developed to this point: simply give the people freedom of expression and freedom to protest so that they can feel themselves righteous and superior, after which they may do as they wish.

I have before written an essay “From ‘Moral Licensing’ and ‘black-clad warriors’ to the ‘Sick People of Hong Kong’” in which I explained the concept of moral licensing:

“People believe that if they had prior done something good, they can then possibly condone themselves (or even indulge themselves) when in the future they do something not as good (even actions that do not conform to one’s own or the public’s moral standards).”

The circumstances surrounding the system of the U.S. are such: if we allow people expression, allow them to freely scold the government, this grants the people “political and civil rights.” This itself grants the American system moral superiority; it is the ends not the means. Afterwards, the government need not do anything further: “half-heartedly listen yet decide to do nothing.” That there have been so many racial conflicts and riots in the past few decades demonstrates that this kind of “expression” does not bring any substantive political transformation. American society has not experienced any fundamental changes. The people who can bear it no more cannot help but take to the streets after many a hard years.

The U.S.’s electoral system is a systemic, national form of “moral licensing”:

First, it grants people the right to vote, grants people a few nominal political and civil rights, allowing the people to feel that they have power and agency and thereby perceive moral self-satisfaction.

Afterwards, the politicians and elites can recount the greatness and glory of the system, right and proper as it is. “We allow African Americans to go out on the streets! So our system is progressive.” “We had Obama as president, how can our society be discriminatory against African Americans?”

The first stage of American politics is taking “the right to express concerns” and equating it with “measures to resolve the problem.” I allowed you to express your opinion, so all is well.

The second stage of American politics is taking “the right to express concerns” and using it as legitimization for “tacit allowance of the bad.” I allowed you to express your opinion, and I even allowed a black president, so what are you babbling about?

As one can see, the separation of powers and electoral system in the United States has created a perfect “cognitive trap” — people believe that this system can endlessly empower individuals and provide limitless potential and possibilities, that it can change anything. This system is in fact like a black hole, taking all the potential and sucking it in and dispelling it — even if it means there will be no changes in reality.

This system is in fact like a black hole, taking all the potential and sucking it in and dispelling it — even if it means there will be no changes in reality.

I believe that there will not be an insurrection in the U.S. because there is no power in the U.S. that can overturn or transform the American system. The American system is too powerful, it can already change the meaning of words: turning “revolution” into reforms hemmed in by the limits of the electoral system. This is indeed an extraordinarily powerful system.

Only an enormous outside pressure can cause the United States to change.

China is just such a pressure currently placed on the United States. In the beginning, the pressure was indistinct, unclear, but now it grows more apparent as China continues its rise.

Why Can’t America Criticize Its Own System?

Apart from “empowering” people, giving them the fantastic illusion of grasping political power and being able to influence it, the American electoral system is also importantly related to the system’s construction of an American person’s identity.

As I have written two days prior in the essay “Why the United States Does Not Understand China — From the Original Intention of the Communist Party of China, to European Civilization, to American Politics”, the United States is an multi-national country, assimilating many people from different ethnicities, nationalities, cultures, and societies. To bind these people together, a country cannot rely on blood ties, shared ethnicity, or shared culture, but instead on shared political values—the approval of the Constitution of the United States, and the approval of the foundational political values of the United States.

Political values and the American system: these two formulate the “national identity” of the United States.

Disavowing the American system is tantamount to disavowing the American national identity, necessarily meaning being anti-American.

Every civilization must construct its own foundations for national identity.

The national identities of European countries lay upon race, blood, and land, and, after, language and culture. Denying one’s race, blood, land, and language is to go against one’s own national character, and is hardly acceptable.

China is also multi-national, its national identity based more on culture and language; one able to integrate into the Chinese nation is one who can be accepted. Land is secondary, and ethnicity and blood ties may also be factors. But in summary, the inclusiveness of the Chinese people is quite potent, with ethnicity, blood ties, and other such factors relatively weak considerations. From the point-of-view of Chinese people, disavowing Chinese culture, history, tradition, or the perception of China’s territory and borders, is what it takes to disavow or be disloyal to China.

From the standpoint of the United States, ethnicity, blood, land, language, culture, and history are not key factors; only political values are. To disavow the American system is to disavow the American “nation.”

From the standpoint of any nationality, for one to deny their own national character is very much unacceptable, no matter if it is Europe, China, or the United States. The distinction from Europe and China is that the American nationality is built on the foundation of a political system and values.

In what circumstances then does a society or a nationality go against and disavow their own nationality?

I am currently of the belief that it is only in a cross-ethnic or transnational international setting where one could find serious frustrations which could produce such a self-disavowal.

Only in facing an enormous failure can there possibly be a self-disavowal, even a “self-hatred”.

China’s concept of nationality is built on culture and civilization. In the past two hundred years or so, China has suffered foreign invasion and bullying, thoroughly fell behind and received thrashings, and as a result came to doubt much of its own system and culture. This type of self-doubt and self-disavowal has persisted onto the present day. Chinese people tend to search for their own “inherent weaknesses” among their traditional culture.

Once the Chinese economy grew, and subsequently once its global standing rose, people began to change, becoming self-confident, and more were able to see the good aspects of Chinese traditional culture and contemporary societal practices.

The U.S. is similar. The American concept of national character is its own system and political value. Nothing short of a severe frustration of the American system, perhaps by China comprehensively catching up to or surpassing the United States, perhaps even failing in a competition or struggle with China, would possibly wake up the Americans to their senses. The basis for the United States’ own “four self-confidences” is its absolute leading role in the world for the past close to a century. The U.S.’s strength made people believe that the American system must be superior, and based on this they came to believe that America’s national character must be superior. The U.S. vigilantly guards against and attacks any other country that could challenge its national might, because any challenge would undermine the supposed superiority of the U.S.’s national character.

The U.S. vigilantly guards against and attacks any other country that could challenge its national might, because any challenge would undermine the supposed superiority of the U.S.’s national character.

If China one day rises and is to enter conflict with the United States and comes to outdo the American system, then for certain it would deal a huge blow to the self-confidence of the American people.

Only in such a time may the American people perhaps engage in deeper introspections on their system and models, and thereby possibly search for and implement necessary reforms.

I believe that American politics and society have extraordinarily powerful inertia and cannot initiate any self-led, self-directed adjustments in the short-term, unless there is outside pressure.

China’s rise is by now inevitable and will come to pressure the U.S. more as time goes on. At a certain point, the U.S. will be forced to confront and rethink their own system, to seek more changes and reforms. This is precisely like the period at the end of the 70s and beginning of the 80s, in which the U.S. confronted the rise of Japan in industrial and commercial matters. Thus, the U.S. increasingly scrutinizing China is only a matter of time.

As China continues to grow stronger, its influence on international affairs will naturally grow larger as well. At the same time, the United States will experience a relative decline, its soft power and political influence around the world will face relative decline as well. China can indeed throw out or act as a challenge, check, or supplement (the terminology is not important) to the American model in the future, and proceed on a path distinct from that of the West.

The path China takes will also influence the course of human development in the future, and indeed may be a course we will get to see in our lifetimes.

Finally, if there is a lesson that China must draw from the U.S. concerning principles of political systems, it must be that we must constantly remember to remain humble. Under no circumstances can we allow ourselves to become complacent and lose our vigilance. We must constantly look at our shortcomings, search for reforms and improvements, and consistently upgrade ourselves. “Four self-confidences” of course is vitally important, but we must at the same time retain our characteristically Chinese low-key, pragmatic, cautious, modest, and moderate dispositions.

We must never emulate the Americans in their blindness, arrogance and self-importance, lack of introspection, or their coarse self-confidence.[MORE]

Translated by Sean Haoqin Kang. The original Wechat blogpost, “American ‘Revolution’: The ‘Systemic Trap’ and the Lessons China Must Draw” can be found here (link in Chinese).


Selections by Amarynth

Is there any possibility of diffusing Sino-US tension?

Source

Is there any possibility of diffusing Sino-US tension?

July 14, 2020

by Zamir Awan for the Saker Blog

Sino-US tension is growing to a dangerous level, what will be the consequences? Who will suffer more? And who will be benefitted? Is there any simple solution? Is anyone willing to rectify things? What will be the role of the UN and International Community, in case of an armed conflict? What will be the future of the World? Etc. Many similar questions are rising in our minds. Hope the serious thinkers and intellectuals may come out with do-able recommendations to avert any big disaster to humanity.

The US was the leader of Western Style Democracy and opposing Communism since the end of World War II. That is why, the US was siding with the ruling party – Guo Ming Dang (Nationalist Party) of China before 1949. But the Communist Party of China (CPC) won the war and gained power in China. The US was opposing the newly established CPC government in China and did every possible thing to harm CPC and end communist rule in China. Either it was sanctions, economic blockade, isolation, media war, or any other form of coercion. But could not succeed.

A U-turn was witnessed in the US policy, from hostile to friendship, since 1971. “Ping-Pong Diplomacy” sign of warming relations between Washington and Beijing, China’s ping-pong team invites members of the U.S. team to China on April 6, 1971. Journalists accompanying the U.S. players are among the first Americans allowed to enter China since 1949. In July of 1971, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger makes a secret trip to China. Shortly thereafter, the United Nations recognizes the People’s Republic of China, endowing it with the permanent Security Council seat that had been held by the Chiang Kai-shek’s (Nationalist Party) Republic of China on Taiwan since 1945.

Followed by President Richard Nixon’s eight-days long visit to China in February 1972, during which he met Chairman Mao Zedong and signs the Shanghai Communiqué with Premier Zhou Enlai.

In 1979, a big development was seen, when U.S. President Jimmy Carter grants China full diplomatic recognition while acknowledging mainland China’s One China principle. Chinese Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping, who leads China through major economic reforms, visits the United States shortly thereafter.

However, President Regan’s era was not so friendly for Sino-US relations as his pro-Taiwan policies. Later President Reagan visited China in April 1984 and as an outcome of his visit, the U.S. government permitted Beijing to make purchases of U.S. Defense equipment.

The unfortunate incident of Tian-an-Men Square happened in 1989, created more complications. Chinese crackdown on dissents was also a negative impact on Sino-US relations. The Pro-Independence President Lee Lee Teng-hui in Taiwan also affected the relations adversely. Mistakenly bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade in 1999, also set-back in bilateral relation.

Since 2000, the trade was dominating Sin-US relations. President Bill Clinton signed a trade agreement with China, which boosted the trade between two nations from US Dollars 5 Billion to US Dollars 231 Billion. China officially joined WTO in 2001, open avenues of more trade, investment, and cooperation on the economic front. It facilitated the rapid development of China and China surpassed the German Economy in 2006, while the trouble started in 2010, when China became a second-largest economy after surpassing the Japanese economy. It has alerted US policymakers and there was a strong fear that China might surpass the American Economy in 2027.

The sharp rise of the Trade deficit in Chinese favor worried the policymakers in the US. President Barak Obama took few measures to address the trade imbalance but was more polite and soft. However, since President Donald Trump, became President in 2016, a visible change was seen in the US toward Sino-US relations. President Trump initiated Trade war and imposed heavy tariffs on Chinese products, banned Huawei Chinese telecommunication giant, etc. The outbreak of COVID-19 has a catalyst in creating tension to its current height. Where the US is the worst-hit country, with the highest number of infections and the highest death toll in the world.

I was educated in China, and have served in China as Diplomat, I have lived in China for 13 years, but having interaction with China for almost 4 decades. I know the Chinese language, culture, politics, and enjoys deep penetration into Chinese society. Based on my personal assessment, China was never competing in the US or challenging the hegemony of the US as a superpower. Common people in China used to praise America and almost every Chinese especially the youth have a dream to travel to America. The common man loves America and dream to visit or live in America. The number of Chinese traveling to America are out-numbered and kept on increasing gradually. Similarly, a huge number of Americans are living or traveling into China for business, jobs, or study purposes. China was the most favorite destination for Americans for traveling, hunting jobs, business, etc. In a matter of fact, the law and order situation in China was excellent, the job market was huge, business opportunities were unlimited, which were the major reasons to attract Americans. This was vice-versa, Chinese people love to study in America, Tourism in America, Business in America, even migrate or settle down in America. There were no symptoms of anti-America sentiments in China.

China is a very old civilization and has been passing through several ups and downs in history. But in the last two centuries, China has been the victim of the Western world and its aggressive policies and colonization. The Suffering of Chinese during the last two centuries has taught bitter lessons and China has become a mature nation. The Centries old wisdom and bitter lesson of two centuries made China, humble, submissive, hard-working, and united. Even more wise!

China tried its best to avoid confrontation with the US, either it was an economic war, or sanctions, or direct threat, but China acted with maximum constraint and patience. Most of the time, China ignored the American rough attitude and overlooked American behavior. Americans used impolite and non-diplomatic language, but China did not lose temper and never issued any statement below standard. Chinese lenient attitude should not be considered its weakness but should be appreciated as its maturity, responsibility, and greatness.

In fact, It was aligned with the Chinese philosophy of peace, stability, and development. China wanted to improve its economy, eradicate poverty, improve its health care system, improve its technology, modernize its Industry, and defense. China invested heavily in its education sector, the S&T sector, and wanted to focus on Innovation and Hi-tech, which any other country can desire too. China has set its own goals, like zero poverty, etc, and was religiously moving ahead to achieve its goals. There were no visible political objectives in Chinese society, and there was no intention to counter America or replace America. China was not ready for any conflict with America or with any other country. Contrarily, China was ignoring its genuine disputes with others and was focusing only on its own development. In 2017, there was a serious stand-off with India at Doklam, but China compromised and resolved amicably. China has disputes withy many other countries, but was never willing to flare-up or use force to resolve its disputes. Taiwan is a good example, where China can invade conveniently and no one can resist China, but the Chinese opted for peaceful reunification and working hard in this direction – one country two systems. China has the capability to crush the demonstrations in Hong Kong by force, yet, China observes a lot of constraints, patience, and giving unlimited space to the demonstrators to settle down.

It is visible that the US is opting for an aggressive, threatening, and coercive attitude toward China. The US is re-aligning its allies to punish China. Definitely, China will try its best to avert any misadventure, however, if a war is imposed, China deserves the right to self-defense and retaliate reciprocate. This might lead the world to a much bigger disaster. Who ill suffer? It is humankind, irrespective of American or Chinese, irrespective of Christians, Muslims, Jews, atheists, or any other religion, irrespective of race, color, or ethnicity, it is human lives at stake. Can we think at this level, respect human lives, human lives are the most precious thing in this unive5rsrse, all lives matter.

I am sure, many of my readers might differ from my views, but hopefully, it will open debate for policymakers and decision-makers. The scholars, intellectuals, think tanks, and individuals with human consciousness may come up with some kind of recommendations or solutions to avert any big disaster. Please do educate me!


.Author: Prof. Engr. Zamir Ahmed Awan, Sinologist (ex-Diplomat), Editor, Analyst, Non-Resident Fellow of CCG (Center for China and Globalization), National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST), Islamabad, Pakistan.

Gosplan: The God that failed

June 04, 2020

By Francis Lee for the Saker Blog

Gosplan: The God that failed

Between 1989 and 1992 Soviet GDP per head fell by approximately 40 per cent. What happened?

The short century of the Soviet Union which began in 1917 reached its nemesis in 1989. The great experiment was, to all intents and purposes, over. Symbolically this was occasioned by the fall of the Berlin wall when huge crowds of East Germans simply strolled, unmolested by the Volkspolizei, into the western sector of the City. Moreover this historical watershed was to become highly infectious and led to a succession of Potemkin states in the rest of Eastern Europe going their own way (with a little encouragement from the west of course). These monumental events represented an unexpected application of the American ‘domino theory’.

It would be wrong, however, to understate the achievements of Soviet communism. No political/economic system is all bad; name one which is? Russia and its periphery were transformed from rural backwardness into an industrial and military super-power, albeit at a tremendous cost of civil wars and the great purges of the 1930s. That being said the modernization of the USSR enabled it to defeat the Wehrmacht in the Great Patriotic War 1941-45. In Winston Churchill’s words the Red Army had ‘torn the guts’ out of the once mighty German military machine in titanic battles most critical of which were Stalingrad and Kursk – but at a huge cost both economic and human.

On the more positive side the system introduced mass education and welfare systems which provided social security for its citizens. However, all this was achieved at a terrible cost in human lives, economic and social mayhem, including famine in the Ukraine, and absurd and inquisitorial show trials, and the mass destruction and near extinction of the country resulting from its ill-preparedness for war. But the USSR survived and counter-attacked.

As the Red Army went on the offensive and rolled forward into Eastern Europe after Kursk (1943) Soviet client regimes in eastern Europe were created in the Soviet image with the imposition of the Stalinist political and economic system. This was essentially a setting up of puppet states, but almost certainly a mistake as many of these regimes had been former enemies including Romania, Hungary and Slovakia who were integrated into the Soviet bloc with their own little marionette leaders such as Ceaucescu in Romania. Unfortunately, this was accompanied with an unprepossessing and macabre parody of the Great Terror of the 1930s ‘Yezhovschina’ – accompanied by the sinister pantomime of show trials and summary ‘liquidations’.

Moreover, armed insurrections against the regimes in both East Germany 1953 and Hungary 1956 were brutally suppressed. The system became a little more tolerant after the 1960s but never really lost its essentially totalitarian character. This was unquestionably a rigidly hierarchical society and, contrary to its claims, never in any sense egalitarian. However, unlike capitalism where power was in the hands of the owners of the means of production and their political apologists, power in these societies was concentrated in the state bureaucracy which included most importantly the communist party and the secret police.

It is in the nature of things that wherever societal scarcity exists – and this includes just about all societies – inequalities will arise. In this respect communism was no different to capitalism. The prominent East German dissident, Rudolf Bahro drew attention to this in 1978 as follows. ‘’ … Individual opportunity in our society – the DDR – is on the whole just as unequally distributed as in late capitalist society.’’ (1)

However it was the structural anomalies internal to the system rather than individual shortcomings of particular party officials such as Stalin and Ceaucescu, although these certainly played a key role. No, the problem was ultimately systemic, and it was this which eventuated in the final collapse. These internal structural weaknesses – which incidentally were just as applicable to capitalism and communism, given that the nature of these fault-lines and the dates were different – gave rise to inertia, and stagnation. The crisis became unavoidable.

This situation was in the fullness of time to become common knowledge as early as 1960. Disturbing reports from Soviet economists showed slowing rates of growth particularly in agriculture and manufacturing, in addition the poor quality of many goods and the most backward industry in the modern world. In particular there was criminal wastage in production ranging from timber to steel. Among the workforce there was widespread absenteeism and alienation. By 1980 the situation had reached critical levels. Gorbachov’s perestroika and Glasnost reforms were too little, too late, since by this time the entire system was beyond reform.

Various reasons have been put forward to explain this collapse. What gave rise to this systemic failure of communism and the command economy? The short answer was a lack of understanding of economic policy based upon a system of central planning and the role of the market mechanism. In a market economy price signals tells producers what, how, and when to produce. Take away this mechanism and decisions of these types are left to the planners. This is not to say that a market mechanism cannot be part of an integrated system of overall economic planning. Models of economic integration based upon markets and planning have been part of state-capitalist and social-democratic economic systems for at least a century and perhaps more. But the Gosplan model was characterised by the almost total exclusion of the market mechanism from economic policy. Instead of which various ministries were set up with a brief to oversee the establishment and implementation of what turned out to be policies with which none had any experience of the business end of economics whatsoever. Ministries responsible for the production of goods were not joined up to other ministries responsible for packaging, production and distribution. The situation was frankly amateurish, and the lack of overall coordination was built into the system from the outset.

Then there were also additional problems of accountability. These unwieldly and unresponsive bureaucracies, which were becoming increasingly parasitic and self-serving had little idea of what to produce and how much. In a market system a product which is shoddy will often fail as consumers turn to other producers to spend their hard-earned cash. In a command economy firms which do not deliver the goods go bust. But this was not a market economy; it was a centrally planned economy which could not go bust and there was insufficient incentive to maintain standards of excellence. In defence of a command economy it could be argued that it is good for producing T34 tanks, but the war was over and economic diversification was conspicuous by its absence.

Certainly efforts at quality control were attempted but none of them worked satisfactorily. Planners would specify a number of tractors to be produced by tonnage and the response of the local manager was to weld steel plates to each tractor as it moved off the assembly line. Tonnage quotas were thus being duly met and even over-fulfilled.

Given the distance between the planners and the local managers the imposition of production targets by the former tended always to be overoptimistic and politically driven. It became a pretend game. Everything was fine and dandy and nobody wanted to rock the boat. This was eerily similar to the current situation of western capitalism in 2008 and 2020. A much vaunted but totally overblown, western economic model – wholly deregulated, privatised and liberalised and based upon ‘pretend and extend’ gimmicks as well as other exotic variations of a Ponzi scheme whereby existing (record) debt levels are serviced by newer injections of debt.

But let’s get back to the USSR (courtesy) of the Beatles. This lack of economic realism was mirrored on the part of the local managers. These functionaries had a vested interest in keeping the production figures low and exaggerate the need for as much as possible in terms of resource allocation. So from the outset the information flow from managers to planners was invariably mendacious and distorted. Resources required would always be overstated, capacity underestimated and hoarded resources undeclared. This of course resulted in a gross misallocation of resources. Colossal waste was also a feature of this system since there was no incentive to reduce costs.

The system was to become ossified with the final nail in the coffin, being the Soviet economy’s inability to integrate the new technologies – which were just coming on stream in the 1970s and 1980s – into its production methods. A writer at the time noted that ‘’ … the most telling evidence of the command economy’s failure … was its inability to absorb and apply the latest developments in science and technology to the Soviet economy.’’ The book further quotes Gorbachov as saying: ‘‘At a time when the western countries started a large-scale restructuring of their economies with the emphasis on resource saving and the latest science and state-of-the-art technology, scientific progress slowed down (in the Soviet Union) mostly because the economy was not responsive to change.’’ (2)

This was hardly surprising given the universal nature of bureaucracy (the ‘Iron Cage’ as the great social theorist Max Weber 1864-1920 had called it) and its tendency toward routine and inertia. Like it or not this is a universal drift in the modern age. For those pursuing career paths within the organization, it became no longer a means to an end, but an end in itself. In sociological jargon this is known as ‘’goal displacement’’, This is explained as follows:

‘Initiative within a bureaucracy is always restricted and discouraged … not so much by getting the initiator into trouble … but rather by the experience of the fruitlessness of personal investment in any affair which oversteps one’s realm of competence. As far as careers are concerned … a progressive image is far more useful than any genuine activity, which disturbs the ‘’normal functioning’’ and may always be inconvenient, for whatever reason. The purpose of rivalry between employees who wish to get ahead can only ever be to present a ‘’positive appearance’’ to those above. The incentive to conform is thus built into the initiative mechanism from the outset … Bureaucracy, as the dominant form of management and work organization produces a specific human type of conservative mediocrity.’ (3)

By the 1980s the USSR was lagging badly behind the capitalist west in the development and application of computer technology, cybernetics, robotization, new energy sources, chemically-created construction materials, biotechnology and the like. Military spending was double that of the US from an economy half its size. What had become known was that ‘actually existing socialism’ was losing and eventually lost the economic cold war with western capitalism.

By 1990/91 the jig was up. The end of the Soviet system had sealed the initial, and I emphasise ‘’initial’’, triumph of globalization. The country was then thrown open to the vagaries of unrestricted competition both internal and external. The Soviet Union was fragmented into a number of smaller quasi-states with Russia being stripped of its industries. This involved the giving away of most massive of former state enterprises for pennies in the pound to ex-communist technocrats and secret service thugs. Russia was left with 70% of its economy in the hands of thirty-six corporations. That is to say, 36 men. It had been converted from a highly centralised public system into the most concentrated private sector of the world’s big economies. This was the beginning of the Yeltsin catastrophe: privatisation, liberalisation and free-trade became the new orthodoxy; about which the less said the better. It took Putin to stop the rot in 2000 but the struggle between the Atlantic integrationists and Eurasian Sovereignists – continues and is far from over.

The damage done during the Yeltsin period set back Russia and its economy to a semi-peripheral status. Trade policy became a case in point. It shouldn’t be a secret to anybody with a rudimentary understanding of international trade relations that when developed nations trade with developing nations most of the trade advantages accrue to the developed nations. This is due to the formers lower cost structures, higher levels of productivity, and comparative advantages in higher, value-added, research-intensive goods in the secondary product markets. However, the peripheral economies tend to produce primary goods – predominantly agriculture, raw materials, and plantation fruits.

As income rises expenditure on these income-inelastic primary goods stays static, or actually falls; contrariwise the demand for secondary goods, which are income-elastic – predominantly cars, computers, IPhones, etc. – rises in line with rises in incomes. From this it follows that primary exporting states need to sell more of their goods to developed states because the ‘Terms of Trade’ (see below fn 4) have a tendency to move in favour of the developed economies and against the developing states. It is argued that contemporary Russia is in international terms a semi-peripheral economy.

It has been particularly difficult for Russia to break out of this straight-jacket since Russian leaders have been seriously handicapped by the need to struggle against this internal corporate/criminal power structure. And it is a struggle which continues. Underdeveloped or semi-developed economies will not ascend the ladder of economic growth by relying on the production of primary goods. A policy of free-trade (actually there is no such thing, but let that pass) was rejected in the 19th century by the United States – under the influence of Alexander Hamilton, and in Germany by Friedrich List. The object of their mercantilist strategic trade policy was to catch up and pass Britain during the course of the 19th century, which they did. Russia would do well to note this.

Summing up: The development of the USSR so long as the economic goals were simple and could be calibrated quantitatively – tons of steel, kilowatts of electricity, or numbers of tractors produced – centralised planning worked relatively well. Alec Nove, probably the most objective analyst of the Soviet economy over the years said.

‘’Planning worked in those sectors to which the state gave priority and whose needs could easily be quantified. This applied first and foremost to armaments, but also to electrical energy, where the product is homogeneous and thus readily ‘plannable’. It also applied to the production of oil and gas, and to the construction of a network of pipelines. In each of these fields the Soviet Union made impressive gains.’’ (5)

However as the Soviet economy became more complex, as the number and variety of products expanded, and it became increasingly obliged to measure its performance against that of advanced capitalism the systems inherent limitations and negative aspects were revealed.

‘’The plan as it turned out, was not really a plan at all. Simply at the technical level the central apparatus had no way to process – let alone to absorb and evaluate – all the necessary information on resources, performance, transportation, warehousing, technology, consumer needs, and so on that would have to go into developing a realistic plan. (Since computers might have made at least the gathering and processing of such information possible, the fact that the Soviet planners never managed to ensure the full development and employment of computer technology is itself highly suggestive of the plans arbitrary character and the systems inherent inertia.) (6)

The Soviet Union and the other command economies stagnated and collapsed due to their general backwardness and involving inter alia the absence of any reliable method of resource allocation and quality control. The absence of the market mechanism in this respect left production and allocation decisions dependent on the subjective judgements of the planners as well as those nefarious semi-criminal activities cited above. This resulted in a misallocation of resources on a gigantic scale as well as inferior quality goods

However, it should be noted that the collapse of the command economies in Eastern Europe did not herald the beginning of any capitalist nirvana – quite the contrary. If anything the post-communist societies all experienced a catastrophic fall in production, living standards and most seriously of all depopulation. Some have now recovered but many are still worse off than before the fall of communism, and many are nostalgic for the old days of communist rule. The move from the command economy to the most extreme form of capitalism was in fact a jump out of the frying pan into the fire for some.

Thus by way of conclusion we may say that in contemporary society any viable economic system must include both planning and market/price mechanisms. Heeding the lessons of history it can clearly be discerned – unless we are ideologically blinkered – that both pure free markets (if they ever really existed) and command economies simply do not work in the narrower sense and record; the first because it is based upon totally unrealistic assumptions and works with timeless and purely formal categories of value, price and efficiency; these categories have little or no relation to the real world of actually existing capitalism, devoid as they are of any human or empirical dimensions; and the latter because it is simply too rigid and unresponsive to change and innovation which, because of its essential characteristics, it will tend to stifle and suffocate.

Markets are a good servant but a bad master. A system of regulated markets – this regulation being particularly rigorous in the case of financial markets – and economic planning are essential to any economic system since it is necessary to combine innovation and dynamism with stability and continuity. It is to be hoped perhaps some time in the future economists will remember these lessons when attempting to construct any social and economic orders.

(1) Rudolf Bahro – The Alternative in Eastern Europe – 1987

(2) Irwin Silber – Socialism: What Went Wrong? – 1996.

(3) Bahro – Ibid

(4) Terms of Trade. The main theory for the declining commodity terms of trade is known as the Prebisch-Singer thesis, after two development economists who explored its implications in the 1950s. They argued that there was and would continue to be a secular decline in the terms of trade of primary commodity exporters due to a combination of low income and price elasticities of demand. This decline would result in an ongoing transfer of income from poor to rich countries would only be combated only by the efforts to protect domestic manufacturing industries through a process that has become to be known as import substitution. But as well as this growth and modernisation can and has been achieved by export driven growth characteristic of East Asian countries. It could be argued that this problem of primary producing countries is not dissimilar to the position of Russia. It was argued that,

‘’After the Soviet Union collapsed, its former constituent republics embarked on the transition to capitalism. But this was not, and could not be, a transition to the highly developed capitalism of the global centre … within the framework of the world capitalist system, these newly converted states could only occupy a place in the backward and dependent periphery … The share in exports represented by products of manufacturing industry is very low … (Moreover) the data shows that the net outflow of private capital is a persistent tendency of the Russian economy. In the crisis of 2014-15, alone, it exceeded $210 billion. This huge amount could have been used to increased wages and investment and overcome the slump.’’ See Semi-Peripheral Russia and the Ukraine Crisis, Ruslan Dzarasov – Department of Political Economy, Plekhanov Russian University of Economics, Moscow.

(5) Abraham Brumberg – Chronicle of a Revolution – 1990 – p.54)

(6) Irwin Silber – Actually Existing Socialism – Socialism: What went wrong. pp,124/125 – Pluto Press 1994

The unbearable lightness of China

April 26, 2020

By Pepe Escobar – posted with permission

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Kishore-Mahbubani-300x198.jpg
Singaporean ex-diplomat and author Kishore Mahbubani speaks at an Asia Society event in a file photo. Photo: Flickr Commons

As a living embodiment of how East and West shall meet, Mahbubani is immeasurably more capable to talk about Chinese-linked intricacies than shallow, self-described Western “experts” on Asia and China.

Especially now when demonization-heavy hybrid war 2.0 against China is practiced by most factions of the US government, the Deep State and the East Coast establishment.

Distinguished fellow at the National University of Singapore’s Asia Research Institute, former president of the UN Security Council (from 2001 to 2002) and the founding dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (2004-2017), Mahbubani is the quintessential Asian diplomat.

Ruffling feathers is not his business. On the contrary, he always deploys infinite patience – and insider knowledge – when trying to explain especially to Americans what makes the Chinese civilization-state tick.

All through a book elegantly argued and crammed with persuasive facts, it feels like Mahbubani is applying the Tao. Be like water. Let it flow. He floats like a butterfly reaching beyond his own “paradoxical conclusion”: “A major geopolitical contest between America and China is both inevitable and avoidable.” He centers on the paths towards the “avoidable.”

The contrast with the confrontational, stale and irrelevant Thucydides Trap mindset prevalent in the US could not be starker. It’s quite enlightening to observe the contrast between Mahbubani and Harvard University’s Graham Allison – who seem to admire each other – at a China Institute debate.

An important clue to his approach is when Mahbubani tells us how his Hindu mother used to take him to Hindu and Buddhist temples in Singapore – even as in the island-state most Buddhist monks were actually Chinese. Here we find encapsulated the key cultural/philosophical India-China crossover that defines “deep” East Asia, linking Confucianism, Buddhism and the Tao.

All about the US dollar 

For Asia hands, and for those, as in my case, who have actually lived in Singapore, it’s always fascinating to see how Mahbubani is the quintessential Lee Kuan Yew disciple, though without the haughtiness. As much as his effort to understand China from the inside, across the spectrum, for decades, is more than visible, he’s far from being a disciple of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

And he stresses the point in myriad ways, showing how, in the party slogan, “Chinese” is way more important than “Communist”: “Unlike the Soviet Communist Party, [the CCP] is not riding on an ideological wave; it is riding the wave of a resurgent civilization … the strongest and most resilient civilization in history.”

Inescapably, Mahbubani outlines both Chinese and American geopolitical and geo-economic challenges and shortcomings. And that leads us to arguably the key argument in the book: how he explains to Americans the recent erosion of global trust in the former “indispensable nation,” and how the US dollar is its Achilles’ heel.

So once again we have to wallow in the interminable mire of reserve currency status; its “exorbitant privilege,” the recent all-out weaponization of the US dollar and – inevitably – the counterpunch: those “influential voices” now working to stop using the US dollar as reserve currency.

Enter blockchain technology and the Chinese drive to set up an alternative currency based on blockchain. Mahbubani takes us to a China Finance 40 Forum in August last year, when the deputy director of the People’s Bank of China, Mu Changchun, said the PBOC was “close” to issuing its own cryptocurrency.

Two months later, President Xi announced that blockchain would become a “high priority” and a matter of long-term national strategy.  It’s happening now. The digital yuan – as in a “sovereign blockchain” – is imminent.

And that leads us to the role of the US dollar in financing global trade. Mahbubani correctly analyzes that once this is over, “the complex international system based on the US dollar could come tumbling down, rapidly or slowly.” China’s master plan is to accelerate the process by connecting its digital platforms – Alipay, WeChat Pay – into one global system.

Asian Century 

As Mahbubani carefully explains, “while Chinese leaders want to rejuvenate Chinese civilization, they have no missionary impulse to take over the world and make everyone Chinese.” And still, “America convinced itself that China has become an existential threat.”

The best and the brightest across Asia, Mahbubani included, never cease to be amazed at the American system’s total inability to “make strategic adjustments to this new phase in history.” Mahbubani dedicates a whole chapter – “Can America make U-turns?” – to the quandary.

In the appendix he even adds a text by Stephen Walt debunking “the myth of American exceptionalism.” There’s no evidence the Exceptionalistan ethos is being seriously contested.

A recent McKinsey report  analyzes whether the “next normal” will emerge from Asia, and some of its conclusions are inevitable: “The future global story starts in Asia.” It goes way beyond prosaic numbers stating that in 20 years, by 2040, “Asia is expected to represent 40% of global consumption and 52% of GDP.”

The report argues that, “we may look back on this pandemic as the tipping point when the Asian Century truly began.”

In 1997, during the same week when I was covering the Hong Kong handover, I published a book in Brazil whose translated title was 21st: The Asian Century (excerpts from a few chapters may be found here). By that time I had already lived in Asia for three years, and learned quite a few important lessons from Mahbubani’s Singapore.

China then was still a distant player on the new horizon. Now it’s a completely different ball game. The Asian Century – actually Eurasian Century – is already on, as Eurasia integration develops driven by hard-working acronyms (BRI, AIIB, SCO, EAEU) and the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Mahbubani’s book, capturing the elusive, unbearable lightness of China, is the latest illustration of this inexorable flow of history.

Has China Won? The Chinese Challenge to American Primacy (Kishore Mahbubani), published by Public Affairs (US$19.89).

The AngloZionists are launching a strategic PSYOP against China

THE SAKER • APRIL 22, 2020 

Maybe the “the Russians did it” narrative is getting stale. Or maybe the leaders of the Empire have finally figured out that China is even more dangerous to the Empire than Russia. But my personal gut feeling is simply that the AngloZionists are freaking out about the “full-spectrum” loss of face they suffered with their massive mishandling (medically and, even more so, politically!) of this pandemic-induced socio-economic crisis and that they now are pointing fingers pretty much at everybody (including each other).

Russia did play a crucial role here, since it was in its informational war against Russia that the leaders of the Empire came up with what I now call the “Skripal rules of evidence” aka “highly likely”. This latest principle being subserviently accepted by all Europeans in the name of “solidarity” (solidarity with what exactly is rarely specified), it was, shall we say, “naively reasonable” that it would work this time around again. Again, I am personally not so sure about that at all. Much has changed over the past two years: not only did the Europeans eventually find out how utterly stupid and incredible the entire Skripal fairy tale was, but the level of disgust and even hatred with Trump and the US has sharply gone up. Furthermore, China has a lot more to offer to Europe, than the disintegrating (dis-)United States – so why side with the losing party? Last, but most certainly not least, the Europeans will find out (and some already have), that the US literally does not give a damn about not only regular Europeans, but even about the European ruling classes.

A quick study of history shows that when exploiting elites are doing great, they all faithfully support each other, but when things start to go south, they immediately turn on each other. The best recent example of this phenomenon is the schism in the US ruling elites who, since the election of Trump, have immediately turned on each other and are now viciously fighting like “spiders in a can” (to use a Russian expression). In fact, this is so true that it can even be used as a very reliable diagnostic tool: when your enemies are all united, then they are probably confident in their victory, but as soon as they turn on each other, you *know* that things are looking very bad for your opponents. Likewise, we now see how southern Europeans are getting really angry with their northern “EU allies” (Macron seems to be falling in line behind Trump even if he uses a more careful and diplomatic language). Finally, the way the US CIA has one foreign policy, the Pentagon another and Foggy Bottom one of its own (even if limited to sanctions and finger-pointing) tells you pretty much all you need to know to see how deep the systemic crisis of the Empire has become.

While there are very few truly intelligent people left in the US government, there are still plenty of “horizontally clever” ones and it did not take them long to find out that this pandemic gave then a golden opportunity to pin all their own failures and mistakes on China. The elements? Simple really:

  1. Anti-Chinese propaganda has a long history in the US and it was really easy to re-kindle it.
  2. Most Americans have a completely irrational reaction to the word “Communist” so it is really easy for any US propaganda outlet to mention the CCP and “lies” in the same sentence and sound credible, irrespective of what else the sentence claims (like, say, factual evidence).
  3. The US plutocracy is terrified of the Chinese economic and industrial power, hence the vilification of companies like Huawei or DJI which are declared a national security threat to the US. Blame everything on the Chinese and the US oligarchs will love it!
  4. China and Russia are in a relationship which is even far deeper than an alliance. I call it a “symbiosis” while the Chinese speak of a “Strategic comprehensive partnership of coordination for the new era” while the Russians speak of a “crucial alliance”. The terms don’t really matter here, what matters is that Russia and China are standing together ( that is what they mean by “coordinating”) against the Empire and that the (admittedly few and clumsy) US attempts are breaking this alliance have totally failed.
  5. As with any new pandemic, it did take China time to figure out the nature of what was happening and it was extremely easy to accuse China of deliberate obfuscation (while keeping the fact that China did inform the world as early as December 31st is, obviously omitted, as is the presence of a multi-national WHO delegation to investigate this issue. In reality, one might as well accuse China of being TOO open, and allowing various estimates and hypotheses to circulate even before the Chinese government had all the facts established. It is a perfect case of dammed if you do and damned if you don’t.
  6. The US political culture is that 99.99% of Americans will believe literally ANY lie, no matter how self-evidently stupid, about the rest of the world rather than accepting any unpleasant truth about the US. So scapegoating another power, especially a Communist one, gets a knee-jerk reaction of approval from the overwhelming majority of Americans.
  7. When the WHO clearly did not buy into the US propaganda, it was a great move for Trump to defund it. Not only did the US already owe the WHO millions of dollars (50-200, depending on who you ask), so the easy pretext not to pay was to accuse it of being pro-Chinese. It is obvious that Trump has no use for the UN other than as a whipping boy, and this was a prefect way to target it again.
  8. As with any scary event, a true tsunami of completely unsubstantiated and outright silly rumors began as soon as it was clear that this was a major event and all the US propaganda machine had to do was to speak in serious tones about some of these rumors and to make it appear that the media was “just reporting” rather than planting stories.
  9. China is also a major threat to US interests in Asia, and this pandemic provided a perfect opportunity for the US to present reports from Taiwan as reports from China (that is an old trick). As for the Taiwanese government, they were more than happy to find yet another pretext to hate on China, nothing new here either.
  10. Finally, US economists did not take long to figure out that this pandemic would have devastating effect on the “best economy in the history of the galaxy” so preemptively blaming it all on China is the perfect way for Trump and his Neocon masters to deflect the blame from them.

The stories which were then planted were truly magnificent. Here are a few of my personal favorites

There are many more, I am sure that you have seen them too.

Eventually, and inevitably, this strategic PSYOP upped the ante and FOXnews (logically) aired this true masterpiece: “Sen. Hawley: Let coronavirus victims sue Chinese Communist Party“. Truly, this is brilliant. “I lost my job, let the evil Chinese commies pay me back” is music to the ears of most Americans.

Right now, most of the US statements are simply lies, but as China will, with time, eventually release more corrected and accurate information, these corrected/updated statistics will immediately be interpreted as the proof that initially the Chinese were deliberately lying and not as the effect of the Chinese themselves gradually getting a better picture of what actually happened. Again, this is the typical case of dammed if you don’t and dammed if you do.

I should mention that there is another reason which might contribute to the decision of the US to blame it all on China: it is still not clear where this virus came from, but one possibility is that it originated in the US and was brought to China by Americans (whether deliberately or not is not the issue here). As for the reports which claim that the US is deliberately covering up the real magnitude of the disaster in the US, they are ignored.

Furthermore, it is now painfully obvious that the US politicians totally misread the situation and began by saying either that it was a Chinese problem or that it was “no worse than the seasonal flu”, or both. This is just the latest case of what I call the “US narcissistic messianism” leading US leaders to believe in their own propaganda only to find out that reality still exists out there and that it is dramatically different from the delusions held by most Americans.

Now all these US politicians (the Republicrats as much as the Demoblicans) all have to run and cover their collective butts. What better way to achieve that than to blame it all on China?

As I said above, this his clever, but definitely not very intelligent.

The US is already locked in an unwinnable war against Russia (as I always remind everybody, this war is 80% informational, 15% economic and only 5% kinetic). To open a full-scale “second front” makes sense in terms of short term political expediency, especially in an election year, but in the long term it is self-defeating and disastrous. In fact, if there is anything history teaches us, is that opening a second front when you can’t even handle the first one is suicidal. But who cares about history, especially in the “United States of Amnesia”? And, besides, when you are both totally exceptional and totally superior, why would you care about the history of the common “deplorable” people and nations out there? Just call them “shit holes” and wave your (Chinese made) flag. That is what passes for “looking Presidential” these days…

Regardless of anything said above, the momentum of this sinophobic campaign is too big to be reversed or stopped. And since most of the US political class supports it, this will probably continue even after the US Presidential election (assuming it takes place).

Still, all this begs the question: what did really happen? What is the truth?

The truth is that nobody really knows. It will probably take years to get the full picture and, even more so, the correct numbers. What correct numbers? Well, ALL of them: carriers, resistance, age groups, comorbidity, the exact characteristics of this virus (and of its various mutations), how effective the various tests are, which antiviral medication might help, its side effects, whether the BCG vaccine somehow helps the body to fight off the virus, etc.

Right now, I don’t believe that anybody really knows, even the percentage of asymptomatic carriers changes by an order of magnitude depending on whom you ask. Sure, some guesses are closer to the truth than others, by definition, but which ones are closer is still very hard to ascertain.

They key thing to keep in mind now is that most of what we see now has very little in common with any scientific investigation. What we see is an attempt to use this pandemic for political, financial and geostrategic purposes.

And please don’t think that it is only Trump! Just remember what Pelosi was saying as late as February!

https://youtu.be/eFCzoXhNM6c (video to be embedded)

That was almost two months after China had warned the WHO that there was a major crisis developing!

But Pelosi, just like Trump, only thinks about power, money and influence, not the safety of the “deplorables” which the Dems hate so much (as do the Republicans, of course, they just don’t say so openly like Hillary did; but just Trump’s “grab them by the pussy” says all you need to know about his true respect for his fellow human beings!).

Then there is another very real risk: as the situation gets worse and worse for the US and, specifically, for Trump’s reelection, he might well decide to do what many politicians do in such a situation: start a big war. Before the pandemic, the US clearly had no stomach to start a war with Iran, but now that the pandemic is crippling the world economy and that all the ugly sides of the transnational capitalist system are becoming obvious, I would not put it past Trump to start a war with Iran just to deflect the many accusations against him. The Idiot-in-Chief has now ordered USN forces off the coast of Iran to, I kid you not, “shoot down & destroy” any Iranian gunboat which would “harass” the USN. Apparently, he still cannot understand that should any USN ship execute any such order it would soon find itself dealing with a swarm of Iranian anti-shipping missiles. Clearly, messianic narcissism and a rabid megalomania simply don’t allow Trump to understand that the Iranians are for real, that they absolutely mean business and that they, unlike the US, have carefully modeled the consequences of any war between Iran and the US and while they won’t deliberately provoke such a war, they will fight it if needed, with infinitely more staying power than the US.

Like a typical US flag-waving politician, Trump probably thinks that if all goes to hell, the US can nuke Iran and prevail. He is right about the former, but oh SO wrong about the latter. If nukes are used against Iran, then there will be a total and long war to kick both the US and the Zionist entity out of the Middle-East. But that is a topic for another day.

A new mascot for both US parties?

A new mascot for both US parties?

US politicians remind me of a person living in a arctic cabin who decide to burn down the cabin to get much needed heat: sure, this strategy will work, for a while, but only at the cost of a much bigger disaster down the road. This is what pretty much ALL US politicians did with this pandemic, and this is why they will never ever accept any responsibility for anything.

Check out this cute little donkey on the right.

Would he not make the perfect mascot and symbol for both US political parties and for the many US politicians who can think of nothing else than covering him?

There is one more thing I would like to mention here: there are a lot of folks out there who like to carefully note all the instances when somebody predicted that this pandemic would happen. They take these warning statements as evidence of a conspiracy. The truth is that the scientific community and even the general public (at least those few who still read books) fully knew that it was just a matter of time before such a pandemic would happen, because our society made such an event inevitable. Just one example:

In distant 1995 the US journalist Lorrie Garrett published an excellent book called “The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance” in which she explained why and even how a global pandemic would naturally emerge due to the very nature of our modern society. I highly recommend this book in spite of the fact that it is now a quarter of a century old: it is very well written, easy to read, and it makes a very strong case that such pandemics were inevitable (and with no need to appeal to unsubstantiated biowarfare theories).

History will show that we all, our entire planet, did not take this and many other warnings seriously. Ask yourself, what is easier for a politician: to accept that our entire socio-political order is unsustainable and outright dangerous (or “out of balance” to use Garrett’s expression), or to blame it all on the Chinese commies and their “secret biowarfare program”?

I think that the answer is self-evident.

Full speech about Imam Mahdi and the West’s moral failure against coronavirus

Full speech about Imam Mahdi and the West’s moral failure against coronavirus

source 

April 14, 2020

The following is the full text of a televised speech delivered on April 9, 2020 by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, on the occasion of the 15th of Sha’ban.

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and peace and greetings be upon our Master Muhammad, and upon his pure household

May the auspicious 15th of Sha’ban be a blessed eid for all you dear brothers and sisters, the entire Iranian nation and all Muslims and all liberated people in the world. Unfortunately, I do not have the opportunity to meet with you up close and I have to speak to you from a distance, but this is an experience in itself. Today, I will say a few things about the Imam of the Age- may our souls be sacrificed for his sake- and I will raise a few points about the current issue of the country, but first of all, let us send greetings to the Imam of the Age:

Greetings be upon you Imam of the Age, greetings be upon you God’s firm pledge, greetings be upon you God’s promise – such promise whose fulfillment He guaranteed – greetings be upon you the hoisted flag, and you the manifestation of knowledge, of protection, of vast mercy and of inviolable promises.”

The following section of the holy ziyarah “Al-e Yasin” is full of love: “Our greetings be upon you when you rise and re-appear at the behest of God and when you put on the veil of disappearance. Our greetings be upon you when you engage in recitation and tafsir.”

Perhaps, there have been few historic eras during which humanity was in as much need as the present time for the existence of a savior. This holds true for both elites who feel this need consciously and the masses of the people who feel the need as well, but unconsciously. Everyone feels the need for a savior, a Mahdi. Everyone feels the need for the hand of divine power, for an infallible Imam, for purity and for divine guidance. We know of few historic eras during which there was so much need for this lofty truth.

Today, after having experienced various schools of thought and various philosophies – ranging from communism, western liberal democracy to the current form of democracy in the world, with the oversized claims that they make – humanity does not feel at ease. Despite all the astonishing scientific breakthroughs which have completely changed the way of life, humanity does not feel happy. Humanity suffers from poverty, disease, perversion and sins. It is afflicted with injustice, inequality and deep and growing class rifts. Humanity is subject to the abuse of power at the hands of big powers. They abuse science and natural discoveries, the capabilities discovered in nature. Humanity is faced with all these. These things have caused humans, throughout the world, to feel exhausted and to feel the need for a liberating hand.

Billions of people throughout the world are suffering. Some people might have prosperity, but they are not really tranquil. Humanity suffers from anxiety, and scientific breakthroughs and various developments have not managed to bestow bliss on humanity. Of course, human intellect is a great blessing. Similarly, experience is a valuable blessing. These are God’s blessings and they can solve many problems in life, but there are some knots that cannot be untied with these tools.

An example is justice. The issue of justice cannot be resolved with today’s advanced science and technology. Its knot cannot be untied with them. Today, injustice is fed by science. In other words, advanced science is at the service of injustice and warmongering. It is at the service of occupying others’ lands and of dominating nations. So, science cannot untie such knots. These things require a spiritual and divine hand and the powerful hand of an infallible Imam. It is he who can do these things. Therefore, his great mission is to administer justice. This has been pointed out in many prayers and ziyarahs.

The administration of justice is something that cannot be achieved by anyone other than the hand of divine power which is manifested by the Imam of the Age. And the kind of justice that Hazrat is expected to administer is not particular to one specific area, rather it covers all aspects of life:  Justice in power, wealth, health, human dignity, social status, spirituality, the possibility for growth and in all other dimensions of life. These are the things that are expected to be established by the Imam of the Age (may our souls be sacrificed for his sake) and by Allah’s favor, this will happen. All people- including elites and those who can understand events and the masses of the people some of whom might be preoccupied with their daily life and therefore are unaware of the developments in the world– have this need, either consciously or unconsciously.

All religions have promised a big “faraj” and a great divine movement at the end of history, which is of course not the end of history. When the era of the Imam of the Age begins, the real world and the real life of humanity begins to take shape. However, all religions have promised an end to the current condition of life that we have today. Therefore, this is a need, but in order to channel this need and render it fruitful, we have been asked in Islam to anticipate his re-appearance. This “anticipation” is beyond a mere sense of need. They have said that we should anticipate. Anticipation means hope. It means believing in a definite future. So, it is not just a mere belief. Anticipation is constructive. Therefore, in our narrations and teachings, the anticipation for this big faraj enjoys a high position. Later on, I will expand on this anticipation.

In a towqi’ [holy edict] of the Imam of the Age to Ibn Babawayh– Ali ibn Babawayh– he quotes the Holy Prophet (God’s greetings be upon him and his household) as saying “The best action that my Ummah can take is to anticipate the faraj.” There is a narration by Imam Musa ibn Ja’far which says, “After knowledge and understanding, the best course of action is anticipation for the faraj.” The Arabic word “ma’rifah” means monotheism and understanding divine truths. The Commander of the Faithful (greetings be upon him) says, “Anticipate the faraj and do not lose hope in the spirit of God.” It says that we should anticipate and we should not lose hope of divine spirit, mercy and assistance.

So in anticipating the faraj, there is dynamism and action. Well, this has been said about anticipating the re-appearance of the Imam of the Age. It is evident that anticipating the faraj means anticipating the re-appearance of the Imam of the Age. However, this is one manifestation of the anticipation. When the Holy Prophet says, “The best action that my Ummah can take is to anticipate the faraj” this reflects on all the problems that might occur to us in life. We should not become disappointed when confronting problems and we should anticipate a faraj, knowing for certain that it will materialize. The anticipation for the faraj is a faraj in itself. There is a narration by Hazrat Musa ibn Ja’far which says, “You should know that the anticipation for the faraj is a faraj in itself.” So, the anticipation for the faraj is a kind of opening for us as it liberates us from a state of despair and desperation which might force one into doing strange things. Well, this is what it means.

When the Holy Prophet and the Imams said this, it means that Mohammad’s (God’s greetings be upon him and his household) Ummah never becomes disappointed at any incident in life and that it always waits for the faraj. Well, anticipation does not mean sitting idle and fixating one’s eyes at the door, rather it means preparing oneself, taking action and feeling that there is an end that can be achieved and for that, one should work hard. We who anticipate the faraj and the re-appearance of the Imam of the Age (may our souls be sacrificed for his sake) should work to that end. We should work hard on the path of establishing a Mahdawi society. We should get close to the Mahdawi society as much as we can because the Mahdawi society is the society of justice, spirituality, understanding, brotherhood, camaraderie, science and dignity.

There is one point about the anticipation: anticipating the faraj is different from showing impatience and setting a timeline – for example by saying to ourselves that such and such an incident and difficulty should come to an end at such and such a time or that Hazrat should re-appear in such and such a day. This anticipation for the faraj does not mean showing impatience and being restless.

This anticipation means preparing oneself. Showing impatience and being in a rush are among the forbidden things. There is a narration which says, “God will not hurry up if His servants hurry up.” If you are in a rush, this does not mean that God will make hasty decisions because of you. No, there is a time and a reason for everything and things will be done based on divine providence. As I mentioned before, the anticipation for the faraj means both the re-appearance of the Hazrat and the opening after big difficulties: the opening after difficult incidents that involve everyone such as the incidents that occur today in the world which disappoint many and force others into suicide. However, when there is the anticipation for the big opening, this will not happen as one knows that such incidents will surely come to an end.

Well, there is another point here: the tranquility resulting from the anticipation and one’s self-confidence – as a result of which individuals feel calm and undisturbed – could be strengthened with prayers, with supplication and by speaking to God. “For without doubt in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction” [The Holy Quran, 13: 28]. Now, we are in the month of Sha’ban and after that, we have the month of Ramadan. There are numerous duas and various prayers and speaking to God without any interceder is very valuable. And speaking to the infallible Imams (greetings be upon them), who are the closest people in the whole world to Allah the Exalted, will give one tranquility and peace of mind. Remembrance of Allah the Exalted opens our path, gives us joy and attracts divine mercy.

Surely, the millions of hands that were raised last night will bear fruits. Last night, millions of people succeeded in familiarizing their hearts with God, in connecting with Him, in holding up one’s hands and in speaking to Him. Without any doubt, the results of this action will show themselves both in individuals themselves and in the whole society and many blessings will ensue. These were the points that I wished to discuss about the issue of the re-appearance, the faraj and the uprising of the Imam of the Age. Of course, many things can be said in this regard, but for today, this much is enough.

As for the current issue of the country – the coronavirus outbreak – well, this is an epidemic and a test. It is a test for the whole world: for both governments and nations. Governments are tested in this incident and so are nations. It is indeed a very strange test. Of course, enough has been said about the statistics, the very good measures that have been adopted and the recommendations of officials. The IRIB has also had a good performance, to be fair, in this regard. I do not want to speak about these matters, but I have certain other points to raise:

One point is that the Iranian nation has had a brilliant performance in this test. During the coronavirus test and during this pandemic, is modern pandemic, the Iranian nation shone brightly. First of all, the peak of this national glory belongs to the medical staff of the country. I have spoken many times and I would like to reiterate again the significance of their work and the value of their self-sacrifice, including that of physicians, nurses, laboratory experts, radiologists, medical assistants in health centers, public services divisions, the sections in charge of research, and management inside the Ministry of Health and outside it – the managers active in this area. The peak of this glory belongs to them. They placed their lives and their health at the service of the people. This is very significant and magnificent.

They endured the pain of being away from their family. Many of them did not see their family even during Nowruz holidays and they suffered from sleeplessness and psychological pressures resulting from treating patients in a critical state. They welcomed all these things and therefore, a good memory of the medical staff and system of the country will be engraved in the minds of the Iranian nation. This is a good and happy memory left behind at this point in time by the medical, nursing and treatment society of the country.

As well as them, we should mention volunteers: those who were not part of the medical staff, but who entered the arena voluntarily. Jihadi clergy and students, thousands of diligent basijis throughout the country and the masses of the people presented such valuable services that are beyond description. On the one hand, such services make one really happy and on the other hand, they make one feel grateful.

We should mention the Armed Forces as well. The Armed Forces truly utilized all their power of construction and creativity. They placed all their resources at the service of the task which even included scientific resources, scientific discoveries and the manufacture of medical instruments and medical equipment for hospitals and clinics as well as other goods and instruments which were at the disposal of the Armed Forces. They did their best to utilize their power of construction and creativeness in the area of science and pragmatism.

Later on, new capacities were discovered and it became clear that there are numerous capacities inside and outside the Armed Forces while we had been unaware of them beforehand. Youth appear on television and explain the things that they have built, but we did not know of them before. These are the new discovered capacities.

The people’s cooperation has also created beautiful, fascinating and astonishing scenes and they can be seen everywhere. I would like to cite instances of this popular cooperation. Of course, these are not all the cases, rather these are the ones that have been reported to me: in Sabzevar, for example, they have launched the plan “A sacrifice for every neighborhood”: the people in the neighborhood gather together, sacrifice an animal and give the meat to the needy in that neighborhood. This is a very essential, important and interesting plan for feeding the needy. In Yazd, the mother of a martyr has enlisted the help of several ladies in order to turn their houses into sewing workshops with the purpose of producing masks and giving them to the people for free. In Nahavand, a group of ladies who used to bake bread and send it to the frontlines during the Sacred Defense Era have become active again in order to control the disease and help fight it. In Khuzestan, the clergy have set up groups to disinfect the people’s houses. In Shiraz, local well-established personalities speak to the owners of different properties – such as the owners of houses and shops – so that they will not receive their rent or give a discount and delay the payments during the outbreak, thus helping local shopkeepers. In Tabriz, the head of the seminary has entered the arena on the ground to offer help. In another city, a hezbollahi candidate for the parliamentary elections, who was not elected, has decided not to close down his committee so that he can organize activists at the service of a jihadi movement and of fighting the coronavirus.

Of course, these examples are based on a few reports available to me, otherwise, there are hundreds or rather thousands of examples like this in different shapes throughout the country, some of which I have also cited in my previous speeches. It is important to pay attention that these are signs of the depth and the influence of Islamic culture in the hearts of our people. This is contrary to the claim of those who unfortunately tried to humiliate Iranian culture– Islamic-Iranian culture– in the past two decades in order to divert the attention of the people towards the western lifestyle. However, despite their wishes, this is not the case. Fortunately, this feeling of Islamic thinking and Islamic culture is a very strong and firm feeling in our people.

Western culture and civilization showed their mettle as well! Well, our national television showed some of the things that happened in western countries, in Europe and in the US, but some of them were not broadcast because this is the information that we receive and therefore, we are aware of it. The west displayed its cultural products as well. In some western countries– in Europe and the US– it so happened that governments confiscated masks and gloves belonging to another government while they were being transferred in order to use them for themselves. This happened in European and American governments. And the people there emptied the stores in a short time, in the space of one, two hours- as they were anxious to fill their fridges and they emptied the shops. They showed the whole world on television the empty shelves in the stores. Our television showed it as well. And there were some people who fought with one another over toilet paper. There were also long rows of people trying to buy guns. It was broadcast on television that the people were lining up to buy guns because they felt insecure and felt the need to buy guns in this sensitive period of time. We can also refer to their prioritization of patients: their preference not to treat the elderly. They said, “It is not necessary for us to bother treating the elderly, the disabled and the like who suffer from various conditions and ailments considering the restrictions that we have.” These are the things that have happened there.

Some people in those countries have committed suicide out of fear of the coronavirus and of death. This is the conduct that some western nations have shown. Of course, this is a logical and natural consequence of the philosophy ruling over the western civilization, which is an individualistic, materialistic and secular philosophy. Even if there is belief in God in that philosophy, it is not based on correct, towhidi and deep tenets. This is another issue.

I would like to add that a western official said a few days ago that the “Wild West” has been revived. This is what they say. When we say that there is a spirit of wildness in the west which is not incompatible with their perfumed and neat appearances, some people express their surprise and deny it. Now, they themselves are saying this! They say that such behavior is a symbol of the Wild West being revived.

Another dimension of this issue is the public behavior of our dear nation in acting on the recommendations. One can see that the people are really acting on what the National Anti-Corona Headquarters announces in a definite manner. Of course, they might announce something while they have doubts and the people might conclude that it is not necessary to do it, but when something is announced in a definite manner and they feel that they should do something, they cooperate with officials on the recommendations that they issue.

One example is this year’s “sizde-bedar” ceremony. Nobody would have believed that the people would cancel it, but they did. The people did not attend sizde-bedar. This shows that the people have accepted public discipline in confronting this disease in the true sense of the word. Of course, this should continue. This public discipline should continue to exist and the decisions announced by the National Anti-Corona Headquarters – as the Headquarters is the first-tier organization in charge of this task – should be taken seriously and acted upon.

Another dimension of the issue is that coronavirus is clearly a grave problem for today’s humanity. It is a big and dangerous outbreak that has occurred to humanity, but compared to other problems, it is a relatively small matter. We have been witness to many problems in the world and in our own country, which were not less important, rather more important than this recent malady, including the fact that Saddam’s planes dumped chemicals on our country 32 years ago– on exactly the same days that coronavirus has now entered our country. They killed thousands of people in our cities and in their own cities and they did so with mustard gas and the like. This happened and of course, all big powers in the world supported and helped Saddam on that day. Some of these so-called civilized and advanced countries gave him chemical substances and weapons and until today, none of them has answered for the crimes that they committed back then.

And that criminal Saddam, behaved towards our people and his own people in Halabja in the same manner, because he felt that the people of Halabja might be cooperating with the soldiers of the Islamic Republic, he killed them on the streets in a brutal manner. Well, these things have happened. During the two world wars, millions of people were killed as well. In the case of the coronavirus, it is said that one million-plus individuals have been infected and some have lost their lives. However, in the first and second world wars which occurred in Europe with an interval of about 20 years, several million people were killed. I do not remember exactly how many, but I know that tens of millions of people were killed during those wars.

During the Vietnam War too, which was waged by the US, many people were killed and the same is true of other wars. Just recently, many people were killed and martyred during the attack that the US and others launched in Iraq. These cases have been frequent. Therefore, when we think about the recent matter, we should not ignore the other important incidents that have always occurred in the world and we should know that at the very moment, millions of people are under the pressure of oppression at the hands of big powers and enemies in the world and they are deeply suffering. The people in Yemen, Palestine and many other parts of the world are under pressure. Therefore, the issue of coronavirus should not make us forgetful of the plots of enemies and of arrogance and we should know that the enmity of arrogance is based on the essence of the Islamic Republic.

If someone thinks that we should not show enmity so that they will not show us enmity either, this is not true. The essence of the Islamic Republic is the principle of Islamic democracy and this is not acceptable, understandable and tolerable to them! This is another point.

I will tell you that officials in the National Anti-Corona Headquarters are working seriously. We receive the reports in this regard and we are aware of their activities. They have also come up with certain plans for underprivileged classes, but I wish to stress and recommend that executive officials should implement the plans for helping these classes as soon as possible and in the best way they can, God willing.

However, the people are also responsible. There are some people who really find it very hard to make ends meet and they cannot manage their daily affairs. The people whose hands are open and who are financially well-off should begin extensive activities in this regard.

We read in the holy dua “Shajarat-un Nubuwwa”: “Feed me so that I can help- by means of what you bestowed on me with Your Grace- those who are deprived of your bounties and blessings to a large part, as you provided me with Your shelter.” This is one of the necessary tasks that should be carried out, in particular because the month of Ramadan is imminent. The month of Ramadan is the month of giving alms, making sacrifice and helping the needy. It will be such an excellent move to launch a big movement in the country for charitable purposes and offering pious help to the needy and the poor. If this happens, there will be a good memory of this year in the minds of the people.

In order to prove our love for the Imam of the Age, we should create scenes and reflections of the Mahdawi society. As I mentioned before, the Mahdawi society is the society of justice, dignity, knowledge and assistance. We should realize these things within the scope of our capability in our life. This will help us get closer to that ideal society.

The last point that I would like to raise is that in the absence of public meetings in the month of Ramadan – as this year, we are deprived of these very valuable public meetings which are places for making dua, speaking to one another and supplicating to God – we should not forget about acts of worship, praying and showing humility towards God. We can do the same things and show the same humility in our own homes, when we are alone or when we are among our family members and our children. Of course, there will be some television programs as well which can be benefitted from. And we are obliged to do so.

I also have one word of advice for officials and for young activists in the arena of science and technology. Two things should not be forgotten: one is the issue of “surge in production” which is vital for the country. We should pursue the issue of production in the country at any cost and we should help production witness a surge in the true sense of the word. And another is the issue of manufacturing the many things that we need and doing laboratory wok. By Allah’s favor, the youth in laboratory sections will pursue this matter.

I ask Allah the Exalted to bestow salvation on the Iranian nation. May God gladden the immaculate soul of our magnanimous Imam, that He associates the pure souls of our dear martyrs with the Holy Prophet, that He will realize the big dreams of the Iranian nation and that He hastens the re-appearance of the Imam of the Age- may our souls be sacrificed for his sake- God willing.

Greetings be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings

Our fundamental disagreement about WWII, Hitler, Jews and race

THE SAKER • FEBRUARY 7, 2020

Our fundamental disagreement about WWII, Hitler, Jews and race

The topic of Russians and Jews is clearly a “hot” one. Over the past few years I wrote several articles on this topic including “Putin and Israel A Complex and Multi-Layered Relationship”, “Why Is Putin “Allowing” Israel to Bomb Syria?”, “Russia, Israel and the Values of “Western Civilization” – Where Is the Truth?” and “Debunking the Rumors About Russia Caving in to Israel”. And yet, for a while now I have felt that there is much more which could, and should, be said on this topic.

Recent events (including Putin’s and Zelenskii’s recent trip to Israel or the latest Polish-Ukrainian theory about the USSR being an accomplice to the Holocaust) again gave me that strong feeling that the way Jews are seen in the West is truly very different from how Jews are viewed in Russia. Yet, in the West, this difference is often (almost always, really!) overlooked and assumptions are made about Russia and Russians which are simply not warranted and which end up being highly misleading. This is why I will try to debunk some of these assumptions today.

First, a very quick and very short look into our recent history

The very best book to read on Russian-Jewish relations is “200 Years Together” by Alexander Solzhenitsyn. The problem with this book is that has never been officially translated into English. Yup, that’s right. A CRUCIAL book by a Nobel Prize winner can be so controversial that nobody in the publishing business has dared to print it. Happily, a number of websites offer unofficial “samizdat” translations, see herehere and here. I cannot vouch for the quality of these translations as I read the book in Russian, not in English. But yeah, in the “land of the free”, the putative “brave” do not get to read a book if that book debunks the western narrative about Russia and Jews. By the way, Solzhenitsyn’s masterpiece is not the only such book which exists only in Russian, there are many more including Andrei Dikii’s “Jews in Russia and the USSR” which can also only be found on the Internet Archive here.

I can’t even begin to try to summarize that most interesting, and controversial history here. All I will say for right now is that when we speak of “Russians” and “Jews” we need to separate these categories into 4 subcategories:

  • Russians from what would be considered Russia today, in other words, “Great-Russians” (here “great” does not indicate a superiority, but only a peripheral place of residence, meaning Russians who don’t live in central Russia). For our purposes I will from now on simply call them “Russians”.
  • Russians from what would be considered the Ukraine today in other words, “Small-Russians” (meaning Russians living near the cradle of the Russian civilization, Kiev). For our purposes, I will from now on refer to them as “Ukrainians”, but only in a geographical sense, not a cultural one.
  • Russian Jews (as opposed to Ukrainian Jews)
  • Ukrainian Jews (as opposed to Russian Jews)

These four subgroups have had a very different historical experience and they need to be considered separately, as lumping them all together really does not allow any analysis.

Besides, and as I have also mentioned it in the past, the Ukrainian nationalist propaganda does, in fact, have some truth to it. Yes, it is a grossly distorted truth, and it is mixed in with an avalanche of lies, but still, not all of it can simply be dismissed. For example, while there never was any “Ukraine” in history, and while what is called today the “Ukrainian language” is not really Ukrainian at all (the “surzhik” would be the real thing), it still remains an undeniable fact that the Polish occupation of southern and eastern Russia (which is what “the Ukraine” is – Russia’s southeastern “borderland” which is what the word “Ukraine” originally meant) left an extremely profound mark on those Russians who lived under the Polish-Latin occupation. I won’t go into historical details today as I already did that hereand here, but I will just say that this tragic history eventually inspired one of the favorite slogans of Ukrainian nationalists: “to drown all the Polaks and the Moskals in Kike blood” (or any variation of these three nationalities).

Charming, no?

The undeniable historical truth is that the centuries long occupation of the Russian eastern frontier lands by the Poles and their Latin masters created so much hatred between all the nationalities involved that it appears that every time they had a chance to try to persecute or kill each other, they immediately did so. Here area few examples of that kind of violence:

  • The (in)famous “pogroms”: these were spontaneous and violent uprisings and subsequent brutal riots against Jews by their resentful neighbors. By the way, during the Civil War, the Reds often were the worst perpetrators of these pogroms because they also saw the comparatively wealthy Jews as class enemies in the Marxist sense of the word.
  • The very high percentage of Jews among the first generation Bolsheviks (80%-85% according to Vladimir Putin; fwiw, I agree with this figure). These Bolshevik Jews were typically concentrated in the secret police organs and they typically spearheaded the massacre of millions of Orthodox Christians (which have since been gloried by the Russian Orthodox Church in Exile and, later, somewhat reluctantly and only partially, by the Moscow Patriarchate, as the “New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia”).
  • A very high percentage of Jews among the Party leaders during the (truly horribly brutal) collectivization and and dekulakization which took place all over the Soviet Union but which the Ukrainian nationalists (and the western propaganda machine) characterize as a deliberate anti-Ukrainian genocide they call the “Holodomor” (yes, I know, Wikipedia entries on all these topics are pure propaganda, but I link to them precisely so you can see what the Ukrainian propaganda writes).
  • A very high percentage of Ukrainians in the post-Stalin Soviet elites, many of whom participated in the bloody purges of the CPSU by Stalin; and since about 80%+ of the top Party officials were Jews, these purges necessarily involved a lot of repressed Jews (whether guilty ones who themselves were covered in innocent blood or innocent ones, who were simply repressed with the rest of them).

I could list more examples, but I think that these are sufficient for our purposes. What we can immediately see is that there are significant differences between what took place in modern Russia and in the modern Ukraine, including:

An example of a crucial geographical difference would be “pogroms” which, contrary to western propaganda, pogroms all took place in what would be the modern Ukraine today, never in Russia.

There is also a difference in time: Russians in the Ukraine were persecuted by Poles and Jews for centuries whereas Russians in what is modern Russia today were primarily persecuted by Bolshevik Jews “only” between 1917 and Stalin’s purges of the party in the late 1930s.

And then, there is the crucial, truly immense, difference which WWII made.

Next, a look at what happened during World War II and the Nazi occupation

When the Nazis launched their attack on the Soviet Union there were a lot of Russians and Ukrainians who welcomed the Nazis, not necessarily because they liked the Nazi ideology but because many of them hated their Bolshevik oppressors even more than they disliked the Germans. After all, the horrors of the Civil War and of the Collectivization were still present in the mind of millions of people both in the (newly created) Ukrainian SSR and in the Russian SSR.

I would like to remind all those who nowadays try very hard to forget it, that the Nazi ideology characterizes both Russians and Ukrainians as subhumans (Untermensch) whose sole purpose would be to serve their Aryan master race overlords (Herrenvolk) in the newly conquered living space (Lebensraum). Simply put: Hitler promised his followers that they would be very happy slave owners! It is no wonder that the prospective slaves felt otherwise…

In the course of the war, however, profound differences began to emerge:

First, in the Ukraine, the Nazi ideology DID inspire a lot of nationalists for the exact same reasons that Nazi ideology inspired nationalist Poles (who were Hitler’s first most loyal allies only to later be betrayed by him). Over the centuries the Papacy not only created the Ukrainian nationalist identity, it then actively fostered it every time Russia was weakened (if that topic is of interest to you, see here). The bitter truth which folks in the West don’t like to be reminded of is that the regimes of Petain, Franco, Pavelic, Pilsudksi, etc. were all created and supported by the Papacy which, of course, also supported Bandera and his Ukronazi deathsquads. As for Hitler himself, he was initially strongly supported by the UK (just as Trotsky was supported by the Jewish bankers in the US). Indeed, russophobia has a long and “distinguished” history in the West: western leaders change, as do their ideological rationalizations, but their hatred and fear of Russia always remains.

In contrast, General Andrei Vlasov, who created the “Russian Liberation Army” (ROA) had exactly zero support in the West, and very little support in Russia proper. The ideology of the ROA was a mix of moderate nationalism with some no less moderate socialism. In hindsight, it never stood a chance of becoming truly popular in Russia simply because the sight of a Russian general wearing a Nazi uniform was not something that most Russians could serenely look at, whereas in the current Nazi-occupied Ukraine, Nazi uniforms and symbols are still very popular. Last, but certainly not least, the demented and outright genocidal policies of the Nazis in occupied Russia resulted in such a blowback that the war to liberate Russia from the Nazis became a war of national survival which the vast majority of Russians fully supported.

It is also interesting how differently the Anglo powers treated the Ukronazis and the Russians of the ROA: the West lovingly imported to the US and Canada all the Ukronazis it could get its hands on, yet at the same time the West forcibly repatriated millions of Russians, including POW and ROA members, with often horrible consequences for the repatriates. As for General Vlasov himself, he was executed along with other officers accused of treason.

For the Ukrainian nationalists, WWII began as a God-sent chance to finally bring about their dream to “drown all the Polaks and the Moskals in Kike blood”, and then this dream was crushed by the Soviet counter-attack and subsequent annihilation of most (about 80%) of the German military machine. And while many Ukrainians (and Poles) did see the Soviets as their liberators from the Nazi horrors, the Ukronazis obviously saw the Soviet Army solely as an occupation force which they resisted for as long as they could (after the end of the war, it still took the Soviets several years to finally crush the Ukronazi underground). And while most Russians felt like they were the real victors of WWII, the Ukronazi nationalists felt that they had been defeated. Again. The same goes for the Poles, by the way (this trauma gave birth to something I refer to as the “Pilban syndrome”).

Now for the self-evident truism about Jews: while many Russians remained acutely aware of the Jewish role in the Bolshevik revolution and, especially, in the class terror which followed, they did not see ALL Jews as enemies of Russia, especially not when

  1. There were plenty of patriotic Jews who loved Russia and/or the USSR
  2. That Hitler’s demented racism inevitably had to bring Jews and Russians together, even if only for a while and mostly under the “common enemy” heading.
  3. Many (most?) Russians know for a fact that Nazi concentration/extermination camps did, in fact, exist even if they did not kill 6M Jews, even if they had no gas chambers and no crematoria (except to deal with insect-born diseases). Why? Because it was the Soviet military which liberated most of these camps and because there were plenty of non-Jewish Russians/Soviets in these camps. Finally, besides the camps themselves, most Russians also know about the infamous Einsatzgruppen which probably murdered even more Jews (and non-Jews) than all the concentration/extermination camps combined. The fact is that Nazi atrocities are not seriously challenged by most Russian historians.

The bottom line is this: whatever (at the time very real) hostility history had created between Jews and Russians, World War II had a huge impact on these perceptions. That is not to say that the Russians have forgotten the genocidal policies of Lenin and Trotsky, but only that after WWII, most Russians justly felt that they were victors, not defeated losers.

The Ukrainian nationalists, in contrast, were “multi-defeat” losers: they were defeated by the Germans, the Russians and even the Poles (who rarely attack anybody unless their prospective victim is already agonizing or unless there is some “big guy” protecting them – Churchill was quite right with his “greedy hyena of Europe” comment!). And now, more recently, they were soundly defeated not once, but TWICE, by the Novorussians. That kind of “performance” will often result in a nationalistic reaction.

And that is true not only for the Ukraine, but also very much applies to the West of 2020.

Does the collective West also suffer from the same “multi-defeat” complex?

It seems to me that most people reading these lines already know that the “collective West” aka the “AngloZionist Empire” is in terrible shape. Just look at the political chaos in the US, the UK, France, Germany and all the rest of the NATO/EU countries. The West is not only losing militarily and economically, it is also agonizing culturally, socially, morally and spiritually. Furthermore, that which we all used to think of as “western values” is now being replaced by some insipid “multiculturalism” which seems to pious euphemism for the obvious plan to erase pretty much all of the western historical and cultural legacy. Like all forms of persecution, this one is also resulting in an increasingly powerful case of ideological blowback: a very dangerous and toxic resurgence of both Fascism and National-Socialism.

How could a person (Hitler) and an ideology (National-Socialism) be both declared uniquely evil AND, at the same time, undergo at least a partial rehabilitation in the same society? Simple! The only condition necessary to make that happen is to condition people to accept cognitive dissonances and not to be too troubled when they happen. The average citizen of the Empire has been conditioned to accept, and even embrace, such cognitive dissonances quite literally since birth and he has become very, very good at that. But there is also a historiographical blowback in action here:

Following WWII and, especially, following the 1970s, the Zionists made what I consider to be a disastrous mistake: they decided to present Hitler and his ideology as some kind of special and unique form of evil which supersedes any and all, past or even future, imaginable forms of evil. And just to make sure that this claim would stick, they decided to add some highly specific claims including the “official’” figure of 6 million murdered Jews, the gas chambers and crematoria being the most famous ones, but there were many more (including electrocution pools, human skin lamp shades and human fat soaps – but which had to be ditched after being proven false). Eventually these claims all came under very effective attack by the so-called “revisionist historians” who have since proven beyond reasonable doubt that these specific claims were false. That did not make these historians very popular with the rulers of the Empire who, instead of allowing for of a healthy historical debate, decided to make “revisionism” a criminally punishable thoughtcrime for which historians could be jailed, sometimes for years! The reaction to that kind of abuse of power was inevitable.

One of the most pernicious result of this policy of criminalizing historical investigations into WWII has been the fact that many people in the West concluded that since these specific claims were bunk, then all of the claims about Nazi atrocities were bunk too. Huge logical mistake! The fact that these specific claims have already been debunked in no way implies that OTHER widely reported atrocities did not occur.

For example, the fact that gas chambers were probably not used to kill anybody (at least not in significant amounts) does not at all imply that many hundreds of thousands, or even million of people, were not killed by execution, starvation or disease (typhus, dysentery, etc.). Just look at the death rates in Japanese POW camps, and they had no gas chambers or crematoria. As for the Soviets, they deported “class enemies” from their homes and simply released them in the middle of the Siberian taiga during the winter and with no survival gear: most of them also quickly died, simply from exposure.

The simple truth is that any modern state has the means to murder people on an industrial scale even without the use of such exotic (and, frankly, ill-suited) techniques as gas chambers or crematoria (in Rwanda, they mostly used crude machetes). But western historians are banned from even researching these topics!

This situation resulted in an environment in the West in which one cannot criticize (or even doubt!) Jews or things Jewish without immediately being called an “anti-Semite”. Ditto for anybody daring to present another version of WWII. That this kind of collective brainwashing would inevitably result in a massive blowback was easy to predict but, alas, the Zionists never had the foresight to see this coming. Either that, or they were quite happy to report a “surge in anti-Semitism” in the West to extort even more political power (and money!). Whatever may be the case, it is close to impossible in the current West to freely and openly discuss these topics.

Now a quick comparison with modern Russia

The political environment in Russia is radically different. For one thing, it is not illegal (or even improper) in Russia to criticize Jews, or modern “Judaism” (really a modern form of rabbinical Phariseism) or Israel or the Zionist ideology (which, by the way, the USSR did denounce and oppose as a form of racism). Yes, there are still (pretty bad) laws on the books forbidding the promotion of national hatred and “extremist speech”, but the truth is that as long as you only investigate historical topics (such as the real number of Jews murdered by the Nazis) and you do not advocate (or engage in) violence you will be fine. Not only that, but you can find pretty much any and all anti-Jewish/Zionist books on the Russian Internet for easy and free download. Finally, while a lot of Jews did leave the USSR, those who stayed (or have since returned) did that of their own free will and that strongly suggests that, unlike their brethren in Israel, many (most?) Russian Jews do not have feelings of hatred for Russia, the Russian people or even the Orthodox Church (some do, of course, but this is a minority).

Some near sighted Jews regularly deplore that the political discourse in Russia is not as tightly controlled as the one in the West. I would simply like to remind them that the much more permissive intellectual environment of Russia has NOT resulted in an automatic fusion between patriotism and hostility to Jews, as is sadly the case in the West (unless, of course, we are dealing with what French philosopher and dissident Alain Soral calls “National-Zionism” which is a separate phenomenon which I discussed in some detail here).

True, when patriotism (love for one’s country) turns into nationalism (love of one’s ethnicity), then things typically go south, but that is a danger of which the Kremlin is acutely aware of and that is why Russian nationalists are, after Russian Wahabis, the most frequently jailed people in Russia under anti extremism laws (keep in mind that both Russian nationalists and Russian Wahabis typically not only disseminate “extremist literature” but they also are typically engaged in one form of violence or another, thus they are often jailed on terrorism charges too).

An increasing number of Russia are, however, puzzled by what they see as a slow-motion rehabilitation of Hitler and the Nazi regime. For example, while in the West the official doxa is still that Hitler and the Nazis were the worst evil in history, there is a rapidly growing “alternative” viewpoint, mostly found on the Internet, of course, in which Hitler is viewed as a much more complex person, who has been unjustly demonized and whose actions need to be placed in a “correct” historical context. And, in fact, there is some truth to that – Hitler was a complex personality and the Nazis were demonized beyond way beyond anything reasonable. Finally, the proponents of this “rehabilitation” will always point out that Hitler’s enemies were at least as ruthless and evil has he was. Again, there is also much truth to that. However, when the EU declares in a solemn vote that Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union were both equally responsible for WWII, then a fundamental red line is crossed, one which places an “equal” sign not only between the aggressor and the aggressed but also between those who were defeated and those who were victorious.

As I have often written in the past, under international law the ultimate, most evil, crime is not “genocide” or “crimes against humanity”. It is the “crime of aggression” because, in the words of the US judge who declared this principle, “the crime of aggression contains all the other crimes”, which is only logical. Thus by accusing the USSR of aggression, the EU is basically annulling them findings of the Nuremberg Tribunal, it makes the USSR every bit as guilty of all the atrocities of WWII as the Nazis.

Are the Russians correct when they say that there is a slow-motion rehabilitation of Hitler and his ideology in the West?

Absolutely!

The fact that this slo-mo rehabilitation is still currently and mostly confined to the margins of the political discourse does not change the Russian awareness that no matter how much Hitler and his minions are disliked or even hated in the West, Russia and Russians will always be hated even much more. This is also true of what the West calls “Islamic extremism” which is only “bad” when it is not fully controlled by the West (terrorists!!), and which is “good”, axiomatically so, when directed against Russia or other Orthodox nations (freedom fighters!!).

Under these circumstances, is it really surprising that many (most?) Russians feel like the West is a much bigger danger to the Russian civilizational realm than any anti-Russian plans concocted by Jews, Zionists or the Israelis?

Absolutely not!

Not only do most Russians hate Hitler and everything he stood for, they also truly understand that the vast majority of Jews murdered by the Third Reich were simple, innocent, people whose only crime was to be of the same ethnicity/religion as some other Jews who did, indeed, richly deserved to be hated for their racist messianism (be it religious or secular). That is a fundamental injustice which Russians will never accept because accepting it would be a betrayal of truth (a hugely important concept for the Russian civilization) and no less of a betrayal of the memory of all the innocents murdered by the Nazis.

Conclusion one: history matters, a lot!

Whatever we all may think of Jewish identity politics or whatever our opinion of the Soviet Union, it is undeniable that Hitler’s policies inflicted unspeakable suffering upon both Russians and Jews. Western Alt-Righters, who still delude themselves into thinking that Russians share in their racist delusions, can deny and denounce this, but the fact is that history has forever created a bond between Jews and Russians: their common memory of the mass atrocities perpetuated against them by the Nazis. No amount of political gesticulations will change that.

That does not, of course, mean that Putin, the Kremlin or anybody else is an “ally” of Israel or that Putin and Bibi Netanyahu are working together (or for each other). This utter nonsense is a completely false conclusion resulting from a fundamental and profound misreading of Russian history and Russian culture. But it goes even further than that. I would argue that the history of the Russian culture is also fundamentally incompatible with any racist/racialist ideas.

The ideology of pre-1917 Russia can be described as “Orthodox monarchism”. This is not really correct for a long list of reasons (reality is always more complex than buzz-words and slogans), but by and large you could say that what was considered morally right or morally wrong was defined by the Russian Orthodox Church. Well, it just so happens that while original Christianity (i.e. Orthodoxy) was very critical of rabbinical “Judaism” (the religion and wordview), that same original Christianity was far less hostile to Jews (the ethnicity) then western Christian demominations. In fact, true Christianity has always been pro-patriotic but anti-nationalistic. This was also the practice in the Eastern Roman Empire (whose political structure Russia inherited). By the way, this is also true for the 2nd religion of Russia, Islam.

Then, after the 1917 Revolution, Russia was initially submitted to two decades of Jewish terror, especially a kind of terror directed against the Russian people and the Orthodox faith. With the coming to power of Stalin, however, major changes took place (and most of those who had drowned Russia in innocent blood were themselves executed during the famous “purges”). And while Stalin never was an “anti-Semite” (this is silly nonsense which both Stalin’s actions and writings directly contradict), his purges (and reforms) did profoundly change the nature of the Soviet regime, including the ethnic composition of the leaders of the CPSU which became much more diverse.

Speaking of the Soviet Union in general, it is also important to remember that the Marxist-Leninist ideology also rejects racial and ethnic differences and, instead, advocates a solidarity of all people against their class oppressors.

Thus neither the pre-1917 nor the post-1917 mainstream Russian ideology/worldview are a viable ground to try to promote racist ideas. And, thankfully, neither is modern (“Putin’s”) Russia.

The truth is that Russia which, as I mentioned above, is the political heir to the East Roman Empire (aka “Byzantium” in western parlance) has ALWAYS been multi-religious, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and pretty much any and all other “multi-something” you can think of. For all the many sins of the Russian people during their history, racism was never one of them!

For example, this is also why, while most people in the West see Islam (and Muslims) as “aliens”, most Russians are totally used to them and see them as longtime neighbors. That does not mean that Russian’s don’t remember the dozen or so wars Russia fought against the Ottomans, nor does it mean that Russia has forgiven the Wahabi atrocities in Chechnia. It simply and only means that Muslims, and even Turks, are not see as “national enemies” by Russians.

The same is true for Jews. Yes, the Russians do remember what Jews did to them during the early years of the Bolshevik regime, but that memory, that awareness, does NOT typically result into any kind of racism, including any type of anti-Jewish racism. Nor do the horrors committed by Jewish Bolsheviks obfuscate all the very real contributions of various Jews to the Russian culture.

By the way, it is important to remember here that while it is true that most first-generation Bolsheviks were Jews, it is not true that most Jews were Bolsheviks. In fact, Jews were found pretty much everywhere, including amongst Menshevik’s, anarchists, Bundists, etc…

So yes, Jews and Russians mostly lived together for about 200 years, and much of our common history is tragic, painful and even shameful, but at the end of the day, it would be false to think that most Russians either dislike or fear Jews. They do not. Even when they are critical of this or that personality, ideology or religion (original Christianity will always be the ultimate enemy of rabbinical Judaism, just as rabbinical Judaism will always remain the ultimate enemy of original Christianity; we can understand why that is so, or we can deplore it, but we should never forget or deny this!).

If any self-described anti-Semite reads these words and is absolutely outraged by what I just wrote, please also make sure to read “The Invention of the Jewish People” by Shlomo Sand” which will show to you that the very notion of “ethnicity” (whether Jewish or non-Jewish) is a modern invention with very little actual basis in history, especially in the history of multi-cultural empires. Simply put: in a culture which does not really believe in the importance of ethnicity no truly racist ideology can develop. It is really that simple!

Yes, I know about Dostoevskii’s and Rozanov’s dislike for Jews (and Poles, by the way), and yes I know about the Pale of Settlement (won’t touch this here, but it sure was not what western historians in the West think it was – just read Solzhenitsyn!). I also know about the “Blood Libel” (won’t touch this one either, but I will recommend you read the 2007 book by Israeli historian Ariel Toaff “Passovers of Blood”) and about all the other myths spread in the West (by Jews and non-Jews) about “Russian anti-Semitism”. But the truth is simple: while there were many instances in history when Jews and Russians clashed (including the 10th century destruction of Khazaria by Russian forces or the 15th century struggle against the “Heresy of the Judaizers” – which, by the way, Wikipedia does a very bad job describing: in reality this was an early attempt by Kabbalists to infiltrate the Russian Orthodox Church just as they had successfully infiltrated the Papacy). Yet, these conflicts did not resulted in any major hostility of Russians towards Jews (the inverse is, alas, not nearly as true).

Conclusion two: Putin, Zelenskii and the Israelis

The recent trip of both Zelenskii and Putin to Israel has, again, brought the topic of the Jewish, Russian and Ukrainian “triangle” to the front page news. The Poles also seized the opportunity to make things worse for themselves when they chimed in on it all. You read the stories, so no need to repeat it all here. What was most impressive about this event was that Zelenskii decided that he would travel to Israel, only to then declare that he would not participate in the commemorative events. Why? Clearly, he was terrified that the Ukronazis will denounce him for caving in to Zionist pressure.

Putin did the exact opposite, not only did he travel to Israel and he spoke at the event, he also reminded the (mostly Jewish) audience of the horrors which the Russian people also suffered at the hands of the Nazis. Clearly, Putin did not fear that some Russian nationalists would accuse him of caving in to Zionist pressure. Why not?

Why could Putin speak so freely?

For two very simple reasons:

First, and unlike the Ukrainians or the Poles, the Russians have exactly zero guilt about what happened in WWII. In spite of all the lies currently spread in the West, the Soviet Union did not start WWII – the Soviet Union pretty much single-handedly defeated Hitler and ended the war (the entire Anglo effort was worth no more than 20% and only came after the Soviets defeated theWehrmacht and the SS in Stalingrad and elsewhere).

Second, Jewish supremacism was very short lived in the USSR (roughly from 1917 to 1937) and neither Putin nor any other Russian political leader will let claims of exclusive “special” Jewish suffering go unchallenged. And while most Russian politicians don’t feel the need to express any doubts about the “official” 6 million figure, they do like to remind their Jewish friends that the Russian nation suffered anywhere between 20 to 27 million dead people during WWII, thus denying Jewish victims any superior victim status over non-Jewish victims.

Our fundamental disagreement about WWII, Hitler and Jews

Likewise, it is BECAUSE Russians have zero sense of guilt towards Jews, that Putin could mention this figure of 80-85% of Jews in the first Bolshevik regime in front of an assembly of Haredi rabbis (see the video here for yourself:

Can you imagine Merkel or Trump daring to say these things in front of such an audience?

Unthinkable!

Conclusion three:

Ever since Vladimir Putin came to power, Russia has been gradually and steadily separating herself from the collective West. This process is not so much about being “against” the West as it is about being “different” from the West, but unapologetically so! This is especially visible in the nature and quality of the political discourse in Russia which is truly dramatically different from the kind of hyper-controlled (and, of course, hyper-manipulated) political discourse in the West. Simply put, Russians live in a much more open and diverse intellectual landscape than their western neighbors. As a result, it would be a major mistake to assume, for example, that Russian patriots hold views similar to those held by western nationalists. Hence the existence of what we could call “Our fundamental disagreement about WWII, Hitler, Jews and race”.

The Saker

Victor Rothschild was a “Soviet” Agent

January 29, 2020

(Victor Rothschild, 1910-1980,  the famous “Fifth Man” of the Cambridge Five Spy Ring)

Reprise of key article:

Here is proof that the Rothschild-controlled
world central banking cartel is behind
Communism, war and world government tyranny.

As the New World Order (“globalism”) reveals its ugly face–censorship, gender dysphoria, migration– this article reveals who is behind it. Most politicians and media are owned by the people who create money out of nothing. 

slightly revised from July 19, 2013 

By Henry Makow Ph.D.

In 1942, Sir Mark Oliphant, a leading British physicist was shocked when a messenger delivered a part from his new radar technology with a warning from MI-5 Security Inspector Victor Rothschild to “tighten up your security.”

A few days earlier Rothschild had visited Oliphant’s Birmingham University lab, quizzed him on his research, and pocketed the three-inch diameter magnetron.

But talk about chutzpah!

Baron Rothschild was himself a Soviet agent! Before returning the magnetron, he had transmitted detailed drawings to Moscow, a fact later confirmed by his KGB handlers.

Oliphant related this story in 1994 to Roland Perry, the Australian author of The Fifth Man (1994, Sedgwick and Jackson, 475 pp).

Between 1935 and 1963, the Soviet Union knew all of Britain’s military and scientific secrets thanks  to “The Cambridge Five” a spy ring that operated in M1-5, MI-6 and the Foreign Office. Western intelligence agencies were rendered ineffective and Allied secrets, including the design of the atomic bomb, were stolen.

The traitors were Kim Philby, Donald Maclean, Guy Burgess and Anthony Blunt. But there is a natural reluctance to admit that “the Fifth Man” was Nathaniel Meyer Victor Rothschild (1910-1990), the Third Baron Rothschild, the British head of the world’s richest banking dynasty, which controls the Bank of England.

In 1993, after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, six retired KGB Colonels in Moscow confirmed Rothschild’s identity to Roland Perry. Col. Yuri Modin, the spy ring’s handler, went on the record.

Perry writes: “According to …Modin, Rothschild was the key to most of the Cambridge ring’s penetration of British intelligence. ‘He had the contacts,’ Modin noted. ‘He was able to introduce Burgess, Blunt and others to important figures in Intelligence such as Stewart Menzies, Dick White and Robert Vansittart in the Foreign Office…who controlled Mi-6.”  (p.89)

You can understand the reluctance. The Rothschilds are undoubtedly the largest shareholders in the world’s central banking system. Victor Rothschild’s career as Soviet agent confirms that these London-based bankers plan to translate their monopoly on credit into a monopoly on everything using government as their instrument, ultimately a “world government” dictatorship akin to Communism.

It adds credence to the claim theRothschilds were behind the Bolshevik Revolution, and used the Cold War and more recently the 9-11 hoax and bogus “War on Terror” to advance their world hegemony. 

Which is more plausible? One of the richest men in the world, Victor Rothschild espoused Communist ideals so that his own fabulous wealth and position could be taken away? 

Or that Communism in fact was a deception designed to take away our wealth and freedom in the name of “equality” and “brotherhood”? 

Evil and Rich)

MAN OF ACTION

According to “The Fifth Man”, Victor Rothschild had an IQ of 184. He was a gifted jazz pianist with an intuitive understanding of many scientific disciplines. He saw banking as a dreary affair and preferred the exciting example of his great grandfather Lionel Rothschild (1808-1879) who Benjamin Disraeli immortalized as “Sidonia” in the novel Coningsby (1844).

“No minister of state had such communication with secret agents and political spies as Sidonia. He held relations with all the clever outcasts of the world. The catalog of his acquaintances in the shape of Greeks, Armenians, Moors, secret Jews, Tartars, Gypsies, wandering Poles and Carbonari, would throw a curious light on those subterranean agencies of which the world in general knows so little, but which exercise so great an influence on public events. The secret history of the world was his pastime. His great pleasure was to contrast the hidden motive, with the public pretext, of transactions.” (Coningsby pp. 218-219)

Rothschild studied Zoology at Cambridge where Anthony Blunt recruited him for the KGB about 1936. (Blunt later said it was Rothschild who recruited him, which makes more sense.) Rothschild later joined MI-5 and was in charge of counter sabotage. He instructed the military on how to recognize and defuse bombs. Rothschild was a personal friend of Winston Churchill. Perry writes:

“The two socialized often during the war years. Rothschild used his wealth and position to invite the prime minister to private parties. His entree to the wartime leader, plus access to all the key intelligence information, every major weapons development and his command of counter-sabotage operations in Britain, made Rothschild a secretly powerful figure during the war years…The result was that Stalin knew as much as Churchill about vital information, often before the British High Command was informed.” (xxviii-xxix) 

(left, only a society with a death wish would idealize traitors and dupes.) 

Rothschild helped neutralize enemies of the Soviet Union who came to the British for support. For example, he was involved in the cover-up of the assassination of Polish war leader and British ally Wladyslaw Sikorski, whose plane was blown up in July 1944. Sikorski had become burdensome to Stalin after he discovered the KGB had massacred 16,000 Polish officers in the Katyn Woods and elsewhere in 1940.  

In 1944, Blunt, Burgess and Philby all stayed with Victor at the Rothschild mansion in Paris.  Rothschild was briefly in charge of Allied intelligence in Paris and interrogated many prisoners. 

After the war Rothschild spent time in the US overseeing attempts to learn the atom bomb secrets. Due in part to the Cambridge Five, Perry says “the Russians knew about every major intelligence operation run against them in the years 1945 to 1963.”  (xxxi)

CONCLUSION

Victor Rothschild held many jobs that served to disguise his true role which I suspect was that of a member of the Illuminati Grand Council. (The Illuminati represent the highest rank of Freemasonry.)  He was not a lowly agent. He probably gave orders to people like Winston Churchill, FDR and Stalin.

For example, he ensured that the USSR supported the establishment of the State of Israel.  “He knew the proper back-channels to reach decision-makers in Moscow,” a KGB Colonel told Perry. “Let us just say, he got things done. You only did that if you reached the top. He was very persuasive.” (176)

T Stokes wrote: ” In the Russian Intel archives Lord and Lady Rothschild are codenamed; “David and Rosa.” Rothschild and Churchill were inseparable during W.W.II. The bankers bought Churchill’s services in W.W.II for a recorded £50,000 to lobby for total war with Germany, and in W.W.1 Churchill had a bank account in the name of ‘Colonel Arden,’ to accept these secret donations.”

(Rothschild making Satanist hand sign)
The fact that Rothschild was protected until his death suggests this is a ruling class conspiracy.According to Greg Hallett, Anthony Blunt, a fellow spy, was an illegitimate son of George V, half-brother and look-alike to Edward VIII, the Duke of Windsor. Until his exposure in 1964, Blunt was Knighted and Curator of the Queen’s art collection. He received immunity from prosecution in exchange for his confession.

Many believe this conspiracy is “Jewish.” Yes but “generational Satanist” would be more accurate. These  Sabbatean Jews intermarry with Gentiles. The current Lord Jacob Rothschild, the Fourth Baron Rothschild is Victor’s son by his first wife Barbara Hutchinson, pictured above, a non-Jew who converted. In Jewish law, Jacob Rothschild is not a Jew. He married Serena Dunn. By the way, Meyer Amschel,  Victor’s only son by his second marriage, also to a non-Jew, ‘committed suicide’ in 1996. 

While Victor Rothschild pretended to “socialist ideals,” this was just a ruse to entrap misguided idealists. The banker was a conscious traitor. Treason is the template for contemporary politics. The central banking cartel is erecting its “world governance” dictatorship and anyone who wants to succeed must be loyal to the sick new paradigm and a traitor to the genuine old.
While distracting us with sex and sports, our political and cultural “leaders” attack our national, religious, racial and family foundations using  war, homosexuality, pornography, feminism, migration and “diversity.”

Clearly, we need new leaders who will stand up to the owners of the world monetary system. The destiny of humanity is at stake.

——
First Comment by James Perloff

I read Perry’s book years ago; it was very enlightening, and further affirmed the intimacy between bankers and communists. The Fabian Society’s Nicholas Murray Butler explained it well in 1937: “Communism is the instrument with which the financial world can topple national governments and then erect a world government with a world police and a world money.” 
The Protocols of Zion also affirmed it: “We appear on the scene as alleged saviors of the worker from this oppression when we propose to him to enter the ranks of our fighting forces – Socialists, Anarchists, Communists . . . . By want and the envy and hatred which it engenders we shall move the mobs and with their hands shall wipe out all those who hinder us on our way.”
The only reason Victor Rothschild gave Britain’s World War 2 nuclear secrets to the USSR instead of Israel: Israel did not yet exist! The Soviet Union was the Rothschilds’ first proxy state. But with the establishment of their REAL proxy state–Israel–in 1948, the Soviets became expendable. So we had the Cold War, which gave the Zionists a pretext for building up and weaponizing Israel as our “ally.” 
Then, in the mid 1980s, the Rothschilds were ready to have America switch its enemies. In 1985, Gorbachev came to power, signalling the end of the Cold War, and in 1986 Reagan bombed Libya based on a Mossad ruse, marking the start of the “War on Terror.” After all, the goyim couldn’t very well die fighting Muslims for Israel in Middle East wars if the dreaded Commies were still a threat.—————–NK wrote- ROTHSCHILD WAS A SOVIET AGENT 
In the sixties the Daily Express ran a sensational series of articles on Soviet penetration and control of the UK, it made the reputation of the journalist Chapman Pincher. Intel personel said their fears were being ignored so began to whistleblow My stepfather worked for the Express, and he would come home with astonishing news the world beating British aircraft the TSR2 was cancelled by Socialist sympathizers who wanted to weaken the UK defence capability Peter Wright and Trevor Stokes, and to a lesser extent Arthur Martin, were passing on info direct to the British public. Stokes said Rothschild was not the 5th man he was the first man Stokes said all along Philby was a traitor and so was Blunt, and its untrue that Rothschild had an intelligence rating of 184. 
Peter Wright left Marconi to work for our intel people,Rothschild told him if the the government do not honour your old age pension i will make it up, when Wright retired he was only entitled to a very small pension , and Rothschild the worlds richest man went back on his word, so wright wrote a tell all book naming Rothschild, Rothschild sent Wright a first class ticket to come to the UK to discuss it Rothschilds threats meant the first chapter on Rothschild and the jews getting the UK into 2 world wars, was removed. 
This man Stokes was one of those who interviewed Bunt on spying homosexual killings of young boys and running messages from our Royals to Hitler, also said all along Winston Churchill was a spy for Russia, and the defector Anatoli Vrinski passed over the same info that Constantin Volkov did, that Churchill worked for Rothschild. Cambridge was a vile nest of socialists, its tutors were put in place by Rothschild.

الكسندر دوغين فيلسوف الجيل الرابع

سبتمبر 28, 2019

ناصر قنديل

تشكل الجيل الأول للفلاسفة المعاصرين بعد الجيلين الإغريقي والإسلامي، أمثال سقراط وأرسطو وأفلاطون، وابن رشد والغزالي وابن عربي وابن خلدون، في ألمانيا وفرنسا بالتوازي مع صعود الثورة الصناعية. وظهر أمثال روسو وفولتير وكانت وهيغل وكثيرون من ورائهم يبشّرون بالفلسفة كخلفية للعلم والسياسة والاقتصاد والعلوم الإنسانية. وجاء الجيل الثاني مع كارل ماركس وفريدريك أنغلز وفلاديمير لينين وروزا لوكسمبورغ وليون تروتسكي يتوزّعون بين ألمانيا وروسيا، ليتشكل الجيل الثالث من فرنسا مجدداً في محاولات لرد الروح للفلسفة كمرجعية للسياسة والاستراتيجية، بمفهوم النظرية الكاملة، القادرة على تشكيل معادلات تصلح في العلوم الإنسانية والتطبيقية وفي قراءة التاريخ وصناعة السياسة وإدارة الاقتصاد، فكان جون بول ساتر ولويس التوسير.

بقيت الليبرالية التي شكلت عنوان صعود الثورة الصناعية بلا فلسفة، تصرّ على اعتماد البراغماتية التي تأسست على معادلات الواقعية والتجريبية والبحث عن المصلحة، وعند انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي، وسيادة نظرية نهاية الفلسفة، دخلت الليبرالية على عالم الفلسفة، فكان صموئيل هنتنغتون ونظرية صدام الحضارات، وفرانسو فوكوياما ونهاية التاريخ، لتعلن الليبرالية اكتمال مهمتها بالتزامن بين السيطرة على العالم الواقعي والسيطرة على الفلسفة أو الانتقام منها، خصوصاً أن الفلسفة الوحيدة التي قيّض لها أن تبني نموذجها السياسي والاقتصادي كانت الماركسية بنسختيها اللينينة والماوية. وقد تسنى لليبرالية أن تحسم معركتها مع واحدة وراحت تستعدّ للبطش بالثانية.

تشكل من ثلاثي قطبه الأول انتصار الثورة الإيرانية عام 1979 ونموذجها المنتمي للخلفية الإسلامية وبروح ثوريّة عالية، وقطبه الثاني انتصار المقاومة التي مثلها حزب الله على كيان الاحتلال لمرتين وهو الكيان الذي يختزن كل مصادر قوة الغرب السياسية والاقتصادية والعسكرية والثقافية ويشكل طليعته المتقدّمة في الحوض الآسيوي الأفريقي، وقطبه الثالث صمود نموذج الدولة الوطنية المستقلة القائمة على اقتصاد وطني ونظام خدمات صحي وتعليمي شبه مجاني، الذي قدّمته سورية بوجه مشاريع العولمة المتوحشة وجوهرها الخصخصة، مصادر لرسم استراتيجية نهوض روسيا على يد فلاديمير بوتين، لينتكس مشروع نهاية التاريخ ونهاية الفلسفة. وفي منتصف الطريق مع الحرب التي شنت على سورية في قلب السعي للتقرب من موسكو وبكين، والسعي لإطلاق رصاصة الرحمة عليهما كقوتين عالميتين، بعد الفوز باسترداد أوروبا من بوابة حرب اليوغوسلافيا، وتطويعها في حرب العراق، كان اللقاء الروسي مع قوى المثلث الجديد الصاعد الذي يثبت قدرته وأهليته على تحدي زعامة القرن الحادي والعشرين التي بشّر بها المحافظون الجدد، كعنوان للهيمنة الأميركية الكاملة على العالم، وعبر النهوض الروسي كان الاستشعار الصيني لضرورة مواجهة الخطر، لكن السياسة بقيت دون فلسفة، تفسّر التاريخ وترسم مستقبل الصراع بأدوات غير سياسية، وغير براغماتية. يحاول الفيلسوف وأستاذ التاريخ الروسي إطلاق موجة جديدة في الثقافة والفكر داعياً لفلسفة جديدة، لا يدّعي امتلاك مفاتيحها بتواضع الأساتذة الكبار، لكنه يعتبرها حاجة ملحة لمنح معنى حقيقي لمشروع مواجهة الهيمنة، والاستعداد لمنازلة الليبرالية التي يراها تحتضر كمدرسة فلسفية، تعجز عن الإجابة على تساؤلات قامت هي بوضع أسسها، حتى باتت سمتها الأصلية هي اللاليبرالية، وتحوّلت إلى ما يشبه فرق التبشير الديني والعنصري التي شهدتها القرون الوسطى، ويُعيد دوغين الاعتبار للجغرافيا السياسية في حديثه عن البعد الأوراسي، وينبش تاريخ الأعراق والأديان، لتفسير تلاقي الكتلة التاريخية للأوروآسيوية، متطلعاً لنظام متعدّد الأقطاب يُعيد لكتابته عنه والتنظير له الدور في جعله منتجاً سياسياً روسياً في التداول، لكنه يراه ضبابياً يحتاج لمزيد من التوضيح، والتحديد، وأسس التشكيل.

يفتح دوغين نظريته عن الحقيقة الرابعة كمدخل للنقاش حول الفلسفة الجديدة، حيث يقول، مقابل الليبرالية خصمان تتقن منازلتهما هما الشيوعية والفاشية، فكل ما ليس ليبرالي هو فاشي أو شيوعي، ومصدر ارتباكها اليوم أنها لا تتقاتل مع شيوعيين ولا مع فاشيين، بل مع الناس وحاجاتهم الطبيعية للكرامة والاستقلال والحق بالعيش الكريم. والناس ليست تعبيراً عابراً عند دوغين، بل هي مفردة يصر دوغين على تمييزها عن مفاهيم الوطنية والعرقية التي أسست للفاشية، أو الفرد الذي تقيم الليبرالية هندستها الفكرية على محوريّته، أو الطبقة التي تتشكل منها قاعدة النظرية الشيوعية. والحقيقة الرابعة هي حقيقة مناهضي مشروع الهيمنة، بالاستناد إلى حقائق قائمة وصارخة تجمعهم، وهم ليسوا ليبراليين ولا فاشيين ولا شيوعيين، عليهم الانطلاق من هذا التعريف السلبي لجمعهم التاريخي، باباً لصياغة تعريف إيجابي، قادر على تفسير التاريخ ويلاقي الحركات المناهضة للمشروع الليبرالي في الغرب نفسه.

في الغرب معركة ضروس ضد دوغين، مقالات في الواشنطن بوست والنيويورك تايمز، وحظر كتبه في أمازون، وتهجّمات عليه كعنصري وفاشي وشيوعي في آن واحد، ورأس بوتين الجديد، تلميحاً لقربه من الرئيس بوتين، ولدور راسبوتين كاهن العهد القيصري، ويخشى الكثيرون من المتابعين في منطقتنا من تركيز دوغين على تاريخ الإمبراطوريات كأرضيّة للعالم الجديد بنيت ركائزها في العالم القديم، بصورة قد تضعه في حال وهم حول دور تركيا أو سعي لاستنهاض حركات أصولية دينية من نوع جديد،، كركيزة لمعادلات العالم الجديد، لكن دوغين ينفي تمسكه بأي تعصب نظري، مؤكداً انفتاحه على أي أجوبة وتحديدات قابلة للفوز في تقديم التفسيرات والوصفات الأكثر غنى ودقة، معتبراً أن المهمة مطروحة على جمع فلسفي ونخبوي مناضل، يجب أن يولد من قلب هذه الجبهة المقاتلة بوجه مشروع الهيمنة.

في بعض قراءات دوغين قد تحسّ بعضاً من نبض أنطون سعاده، سواء لجهة الارتكاز على تاريخ تشكل الجماعات الإنسانية في أمم تاريخية، رغم تمسكه بالبعد الإسلامي لحضارة شعوب الشرق، أو لجهة دعوته لرفض وضع الفلسفة والدين في مواجهة يراها مفتعلة، واعتباره لمفهوم الدولة كصيغة للحكم قادراً على الجمع بين التصالح مع الديانات التي تفقد بدونها الشعوب روحها وذاكرتها، وبين الإطلالة على كل مخرجات العلم الحديث، لتجديد ماهية وكيفية إدارة شؤون الحكم بين الناس بمعزل عن دياناتهم، داعياً للتساؤل الجدي حول صلاحية الديمقراطية كأساس لشكل نظام الحكم الجديد، دون ادعاء امتلاك البديل. الفيلسوف بعرف دوغين هو صاحب أسئلة، والمناضلون أصحاب أجوبة عملية في جبهات الاشتباك، والمؤرخون يصوغون النظريات من وحي حركات الصراع كأجوبة قادرة على حمل تفسير للتاريخ ووصفة للمستقبل.

في اللقاء الذي جمعنا في زيارته لصحيفة البناء ، قدّم دوغين نموذجاً عن تواضع الفلاسفة، وشرحاً للكثير من معتقداته وقناعاته، وجذبنا إلى مشاركته التفكير بصوت عالٍ بحثاً عن أجوبة على الأسئلة الكبرى.

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Putin’s Multipolar Offer to Saudi Arabian Exceptionalism

Image result for Putin’s Multipolar Offer to Saudi Arabian Exceptionalism
Tim Kirby
September 18, 2019

Global Islamic Terrorism is universally recognized as today’s big threat and has been the justification for all sorts of changes, especially to life in the West after 9/11. The Islamic terrorists whom we are supposed to fear on a daily basis more or less believe in some form of Wahhabism, which grew up in and is spread from Saudi Arabia. Surprisingly the US and the Saudis have been and still are staunch allies. This makes little sense on the surface but Saudi exceptionalism extends to Russia as well. Russia and former parts of its territory have been some of the biggest victims of Wahhabism and still fight it to this day and yet President Putin just vowed to protect them from air threats via Russia’s top of the line equipment. So this raises the question by what logic would Russia want work with the Saudis who prop up the ideas that murder their citizens? The short answer is Multipolarity.

During the Cold War we saw two great powers with massive spheres of influence dividing the planet between themselves. This Bipolar (in the literal sense) structure forced everyone on America’s side to be Capitalist / Western-style Democratic and everyone on the USSR’s side to be Communist. So for every Communist revolution that succeeded Moscow’s sphere of influence grew while Washington’s shrank.

Now in the 21st century this dynamic is much different as the sole Hyperpower is fighting against any upstarts who challenge its status, which means that every nation that succumbs to the Washington status quo is a victory for Monopolarity, while any nation that begins to act on its own or under the influence of anyone besides the US/NATO/The West is a victory for Multipolarity.

This is why today, unlike during the Cold War Russia has a policy of being open to working with anyone who is willing to work with them regardless of ideology. Of course during the Cold War the US and the Soviet Union would work with countries outside their political theory of preference to some degree, but now Russia is free from the burdens of Communist ideology and is thus free to associate with anyone and Moscow is willing to work with anyone because any nation that rises up to a high level of sovereignty creates another crack in the monolith of Monopolarity.

This is why Moscow has been cooperating with Turkey who at times has been very aggressive towards them, shooting down a Russian planeforcing their way into Syria and working against Assad’s and Russia’s interests in the region, and opening Turkish Universities across parts of the Former USSR challenging Russian cultural influence. These all sound bad, but Moscow has a bigger fish to fry and the upstart Turks, despite being in NATO are beginning to push for a more powerful sovereign pro-Turkish foreign policy, which is bad for Russia in doses, but on the whole is a huge stride towards a Multipolar World that Russia so desperately needs.

And this is the logic that applies to the Saudis. True the Saudi Wahhabism and loud inaction in terms of containing Wahhabism have lead to the deaths of many Russian-speaking people the world over, but the Multipolar mission takes precedence, thus Putin offered the Saudis to buy Russian S-400 systems because “Our (Russian) air defenses can protect you, like they do Turkey and Iran” and that “These kinds of systems are capable of defending any kind of infrastructure in Saudi Arabia from any kind of attack.”

Syria and Turkey are both major Multipolar victories so perhaps in Putin’s words there is a hint that Saudi Arabia could jump on the Other World Order’s boat by buying these defense systems. The S-400s in question could be used to defend against a local neighbor, but we could suppose that a massive surface-to-air set up would best be used to defend against NATO, who is the only serious missile launching threat.

To an extent it is very possible that this offer by President Putin to the parties indirectly responsible for a great deal of suffering in Russia could actually be an invitation to the Multipolar World.

Saudi Arabia has been very much the exceptional Arab nation in the Middle East when it comes to NATO’s actions, but nothing lasts forever. The Saudis have oil and little means to defend it, while at the same time maintaining an ideology that has been demonized by the Mainstream Media for almost 20 years, prepping the West with a casus belli when the time comes. The fear of Monopolar aggression could force the Saudis to buy into team Multipolarity.

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Kidnapping as a tool of imperial statecraft?

Kidnapping as a tool of imperial statecraft?

September 06, 2019

[This column was written for the Unz Review]

There is nothing new about empires taking hostages and using them to put pressure on whatever rebel group needs to reminded “who is boss”. The recent arrest in Italy of Alexander Korshunov, the director for business development at Russia’s United Engine Corporation (UEC), is really nothing new but just the latest in a long string of kidnappings. And, as I already mentioned in distant 2017, that kind of thuggery is not a sign of strength but, in fact, a sign of weakness. Remember Michael Ledeen’s immortal words about how “”Every ten years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business“? Well, you could say that this latest spat of kidnappings is indicative of the same mindset and goal, just on a much smaller, individual, scale. And, finally, it ain’t just Russia, we all know about the kidnapping of Huawei’s CFO Meng Wanzhou by the Canadian authorities.

By the way, you might wonder how can I speak of “kidnapping” when, in reality, these were legal arrests made by the legitimate authorities of the countries in which these arrests were made? Simple! As I mentioned last weekwords matter and to speak of an “arrest” in this case wrongly suggest that 1) some crime was committed (when in reality there is ZERO evidence of that, hence the talk of “conspiracy” to do something illegal) 2) that this crime was investigated and that the authorities have gathered enough evidence to justify an arrest and 3) that the accused will have a fair trial. None of that applies to the cases of Viktor BoutKonstantin IaroshenkoMarina Butina or, for that matter, Meng Wanzhou or Wang Weijing. The truth is that these so-called “arrests” are simple kidnappings, the goal is hostage taking with the goal to either 1) try to force Russia (and China) to yield to US demands or 2) try to “get back” at Russia (and China) following some humiliating climb down by the US Administration (this was also the real reason behind the uncivilized seizure of Russian diplomatic buildings in the USA).

This is not unlike what the Gestapo and the SS liked to do during WWII and their kidnapping of hostages was also called “arrest” by the then state propaganda machine. By the way, the Bolsheviks also did a lot of that during the civil war, but on a much larger scale. In reality, both in the case of the Nazi authorities and in the case of the imperial USA, as soon as a person is arrested he/she is subjected to solitary confinement and other forms of psychological torture (Manning or Assange anybody?!) in order to either make them break or to at least show Russia and China that the US, being the World Hegemon gets to seize anybody worldwide, be it by a CIA kidnapping team or by using local colonial law enforcement authorities (aka local police forces).

US politicians love to “send messages” and this metaphor is used on a daily basis by US officials in all sorts of circumstances. Here the message is simple: we can do whatever the hell we want, and there ain’t nothing you can do about it!

But is that last statement really true?

Well, in order to reply to this we should look at the basic options available to Russia (this also applies to China, but here I want to focus on the Russian side of the issue). I guess the basic list of options is pretty straightforward:

Frankly, in the case of the USA, options one and two are useless: the AngloZionist leaders have long given up any hope of not being hated and despised by 99% of mankind and they have long dropped any pretense of legality, nevermind morality: they don’t give a damn what anybody thinks. Their main concern is to conceal their immense weakness, but they fail to do so time and time again. Truly, when wannabe “empires” can’t even bring an extremely weakened country such as Venezuela to heel, there ain’t much they can do to boot their credibility. If anything, this thuggery is nothing more than the evidence of a mind-blowing weakness of the Empire.

But that weakness in no way implies that Russia and China have good options. Sadly, they don’t.

Russia can engage in various types of sanctions, ranging from the petty bureaucratic harassment of US representations, diplomats, businessmen and the like to economic and political retaliations. But let’s not kid ourselves, there is very little Russia can do to seriously hurt the USA with such retaliations. Many would advocate retaliation in kind, but that poses a double problem for the Kremlin:

  • Once a country has gone down the road of illegal brute force, there is no way back. The examples of the US, Israel or, for that matter, the Ukraine show that once primitive thuggery becomes part of your political arsenal you will forever remain a thug and everybody will see this (whether everybody will have the courage to openly state this is a different issue altogether).
  • The reality is that double and triple standards have long become the essential key feature of all western ideological systems, from the Papacy to modern capitalism. The Kremlin fully understands that in the AngloZionist Empire “some are more equal than others” and that that which is “allowed” to the World Hegemon is categorically forbidden to everybody else. Thus if Russia retaliates in kind, there will be an explosion of hysterical protests not only by the western legacy corporate and state ziomedia, but also from the 5th columnist in the Russian “liberal” press.

And yes, unlike the USA, Russia does have a vibrant, diverse and pluralistic media and each time when Putin agrees to a press conference (especially one several hours long) he knows that he will be asked the tough, unpleasant, questions. But since he, unlike most western leaders, can intelligently answer them he does not fear them. As for Dmitrii Peskov and Maria Zakharova, they have heard it all a gazillion during the past years, including often the most ridiculously biased, mis-informed and outright ridiculous “questions” (accusations, really) from the western presstitute corps in Russia.

So yes, Russia could, in theory, retaliate by arresting US citizens in Russia (or by staging Cold War type provocations) or by kidnapping them abroad (Russia does have special forces trained for this kind of operation). But this is most unlikely to yield any meaningful results and it would create a PR nightmare for the Kremlin.

The truth is that in most of these cases we always come down to the fundamental dichotomy: on one hand we have a rogue state gone bonkers with imperial hubris, arrogance and crass ignorance (say, the USA and/or Israel) while on the other we have states which try to uphold a civilized international order (Russia, China, Iran, etc.). This is by logical necessity a lop-sided struggle in which the thugs will almost always have the advantage.

[Sidebar: here I want to address a logical fallacy which I regularly hear in the West: when one political system proves stronger, or more capable of survival, than another one, this supposedly proves that the stronger state is also somehow “superior”. This is the argument used by those who claim that the Soviet Union “lost the Cold War” and that “Capitalism has proven much more sustainable/efficient than Communism”. This is utter nonsense for at least two reasons: first, the USSR did not “lose” the Cold War – the CPSU and the Soviet ruling Nomenklatura decided to break-up the USSR (against the will of the people!) and, second, the fact is that the Soviet Union was squandering its wealth all over the planet while the USA was robbing the entire planet blind. How can we compare the two? Finally, allow me this metaphor to make my point: if we would lock up a human being and a hyena in a small empty cell to see who will survive we can be pretty darn sure that the hyena will immediately and very “effectively” kill the human and eat him. Does that “victory” somehow prove the hyena’s “superiority”? Of course not! For one thing, capitalism implies infinite growth in a finite environment, which is exactly what a malignant tumor does for a living and which is self-evidently non-sustainable. So are we going to compare one political system – Communism – which does not rely on growth and which is therefore sustainable, and which spread its wealth all over the planet with one based on (international) “highway robbery” (don’t take my word for it, take it from Paul Craig Roberts himself who unambiguously stated recently that “American Capitalism is Based on Plunder”). Yes, the Soviet system was fundamentally rotten, profoundly dysfunctional and ineffective (only imbeciles or ignoramuses would deny that!), but it was not in any way “defeated” by the West nor is Capitalism any “better” or “superior” (whatever you want that to mean) than Communism (more on this here if you are interested).]

For all these reasons, there is really nothing much Russia (or China) can do about this situation besides publishing an official warning to the Russian people saying that if they travel abroad they should realize that “US intelligence agencies continue their current hunt for Russians around the world”. They also made public the list of countries which have extradition treaties with the USA: Australia, Austria, Albania, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Belgium, Bulgaria, Bolivia, Brazil, United Kingdom, Hungary, Canada, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Dominica, Greece, Guyana, Haiti, Guatemala, Germany, Honduras, Greece, Israel, India, Jordan, Iraq, Ireland, Iceland, Italy, Kenya, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Lithuania, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Micronesia, Monaco, Myanmar, Nauru, Nigeria, Netherlands, Nicaragua, new Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, El Salvador, San Marino, Swaziland, Seychelles, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Suriname, Sierra Leone, Thailand, Tanzania, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Turkey, Uruguay, Philippines, Finland, France, Czech Republic, Chile, Switzerland, Sweden, Sri Lanka, Ecuador, Estonia, South Africa, South Korea, Jamaica and Japan.

The MoFA concluded by warning that “The Russian foreign Ministry strongly urges all Russian citizens planning trips abroad to carefully weigh all the risks, especially if there is reason to assume the possibility of claims against them by American law enforcement agencies”.

Some caveat emptor before buying your airline ticket, right?!

Conclusion: it will get a lot worse before it gets better

First, we need to always remember that kidnappings are just the latest manifestation of an overall pattern of thuggery by the USA. The attitude is pervasive, and US citizens are not free of this climate of thuggery. Another good example are the outright bribes offered to the ships captains of Iran, to sail their crude carriers to somewhere were the US can literally pirate the carrier. Remember the amazing confession by Pompeo himself:

We lied, we cheated, we stole…. it reminds you of the glory of the American experiment”?

You don’t?

Then here is a quick refresher:

It can almost be rewritten and expanded like this:

We lie, we cheat, we steal, we kidnap, we bribe, we extort, we pirate, then we threaten, and then we tell everyone how exceptionally morally superior we are.

Yet a certain limit has been crossed. It is as if their own belief in their own moral superiority has inverted to the extent that their own moral superiority is so big, and so certain, that any small actions of thuggery is allowed to them. This will not change any time soon and even the most innocent traveler must have awareness of this. This is why the Chinese are now openly wondering if sending Chinese students to the USA is such a good idea after all.

So the first thing we have to accept is that this pattern of thuggery will not stop, if anything – it will expand.

Second, we have to also realize that there are no good options for the Russians or the Chinese. In fact, this is normal: civilized actors often find themselves “out-gunned”, so to speak, by thugs, sociopaths and criminals. Over time, however, thuggery is always self-defeating because it is inevitably linked to a delusion of impunity. As for civilized states, while it is true that they are at a fundamental disadvantage when faced by uncivilized thugs but, again, over time they eventually prevail if only because everybody always ends up fed up and disgusted with the thugs. Finally, while thuggery can seem attractive to people with sociopathic inclinations, most human beings need a higher ideal than just unbridled consumption to inspire them. Communism had (and I would argue, still has) this ability. Capitalism does not.

For the foreseeable future, however, we can only expect more of the same. Thanks to the ceaseless efforts of Obama and Trump the Empire is collapsing even faster than it normally would and we can expect that the current sequence of humiliating defeats for the USA (and, of course, Israel which has its own humiliating wounds to lick!) will continue and that the USA (and, of course, Israel!) will have to find more small targets (be it kidnapped Russian nationals or empty buildings in Syria) to kidnap or destroy and feel powerful again.

This will be revolting, disgusting and simply plain stupid.

But there is nothing Russia (or China) can do to stop it, at least not for the foreseeable future.

The Saker

Putin and Russia: So what is it that Putin has done that doesn’t satisfy you, comrade communists?

Putin and Russia: So what is it that Putin has done that doesn’t satisfy you, comrade communists?

July 22, 2019

By Viktor Anisimov
Translated by Ollie Richardson and Angelina Siard

Source: https://cont.ws/@fybcbvjd/1392576

So what is it that Putin has done that doesn’t satisfy you, comrade communists?

Recently our resident (users of the “Cont” website) “communists” who are furiously criticising Putin again became more active. For what? Well, for anything, Putin doesn’t please our red-bellied guys, and that’s all.

Perhaps it is necessary for these faultfinders to see Putin furiously shaking his fists and threatening the whole world with an “atomic bludgeon”; to see in Putin the “double of comrade Kim”, threatening the US with his missiles? Or the “double of Trump”, who doesn’t shun to launch missiles at a sovereign and independent country?

Putin is not as they want to see him.

I would like to draw the attention of these people to the following circumstances. Let’s briefly run along Putin’s biography.

The political career of Putin started in 1990. Still being an employee of KGB, he was appointed to the position of the adviser to the chairman of the St. Petersburg city council.

Putin is often reproached for “carrying Anatoly Sobchak’s bag”. But in reality it was a developed and brilliantly performed KGB operation that aimed to introduce Putin into the security structures of Russia. It’s not known if Putin took part in the development of this operation himself. And it’s unlikely that we will learn about it one day.

Further there is the “Moscow period” of Putin’s career. The year of 1996. Pay special attention to this date.

After Putin’s move to Moscow in 1996, he was appointed as the deputy head of department of the Russian President. This position is much higher than all his previous positions. And just two years later he became the head of Federal Security Service.

In 1998 Putin is already the “head of the FSB”! A meteoric career, don’t you think?

Already at that time Putin obtained the rank of an incorruptible and experienced head with a great influence.

In 1999 “certain comrades”, perhaps also led by Putin, made an offer to Yeltsin that the lover of power couldn’t refuse. Yeltsin had to delegate power to Putin in exchange for lifelong guarantees. During this same year Yeltsin appointed Putin to the position of the Russian Prime Minister.

The year 2000, Putin becomes the President of Russia.

In only four years, Putin, from an unknown “colonel of the KGB”, reached the top of power. He became president and Supreme Commander. He stood at a wheel of the country, which was nearly breaking up into “appanage principalities”. He stood and prevented the disintegration of Russia quickly and ruthlessly. The regional elites were tamed or jailed “for corruption”.

Back then something similar to what is depicted on this map was prepared for us.

Ollie's MacBook:Users:O-RICH:Downloads:maxresdefault (168).jpg

But, Putin came………

And our Motherland, our Russia, was saved from disintegration and collapse.

Now about the “indecision and sluggishness of Putin” that he is criticized for by both the “right”, and the “left”! By both communists and liberals. I ask to consider one thing: Putin is always guided by expedience and what is beneficial for Russia. Always. And takes the necessary actions at the precisely calculated time, with precisely calculated effort.

Let’s remember, in 90’s the so-called ” Semibankirshchina” – the seven richest and influential people in Russia – ruled Russia. They ruled and impudently plundered Russia. They literally “kicked open the door of the president’s office”, they were the real rulers of Russia. Everything was in their power.

Putin considered it expedient to destroy “semibankirshchina”. It was destroyed, quickly, effectively, and ruthlessly. Where now are these people who at the time were the most powerful in Russia? Their fate was sad, some have already passed on, and some are still alive and have been deprived of all their assets and billions, leading a miserable existence. Some were left a little bit of money “for life”, as an example for others.

Khodorkovsky – the person who imagined himself almost as a god; the person who wanted to rule Putin; the person who decided that he is allowed to hand over Russia to the West! Putin decided that it would be expedient to boot Khodorkovsky. Khodorkovsky was jailed – qualitatively and for a long time. His billions and assets were nationalised.

Putin is a pragmatist, and in some measure a ruthless person obsessed with one idea. This idea is Russia! Everything that goes for the good, and for the benefit of Russia, should be done. And it is being done!

Thus practically all mineral deposits, oil, and gas handed over to the West in the 90’s by this same “semibankirshchina” were returned in Russian jurisdiction.

From the 260 Production Sharing Agreements concluded in the 90’s, in accordance with which the US and other countries of the West got bagels, Putin quietly and noiselessly, without waving red flags, without menacingly shaking fists, without shouting out trenchant slogans, cancelled 258 of them, and for the two that remained the conditions were revised in favour of Russia. Now the “bagels”, sorry, money, goes to the budget of Russia, and the US, and those like them, receive the holes from the bagels.

This, of course, can’t please either the US or the other countries of the West. And of course, they don’t like Putin very much. And in exactly same way, Putin is not liked either by our communists or our liberals. A strange and interesting coincidence of interests.

Now a little about the “indecisiveness and cowardice of Putin” in terms of foreign policy.

I will not speak in a circumlocutory manner, I will just mention his “Munich speech” in 2007, in which Putin, on behalf of Russia, imperiously declared Russia’s claims for “a piece of the world pie”.

In 2014 Putin decided that it would be reasonable and useful for Russia to attach Crimea. The operation was performed resolutely, accurately, and without glancing back at the “world’s opinion”! Do you think Putin did not count all the consequences of this step? You simply do not know Putin. Putin calculates all of his moves way in front. Like the grand master – nine moves ahead.

I am often told that in 2014 Putin could have easily taken all of Ukraine for himself too. He could have – back then in the military sphere the UAF was simply not able to show at lease some resistance to the army of Russia. In 2015 Putin considered it expedient to destroy ISIS on the territory of Syria, and ISIS was thus destroyed.

Putin considered it expedient and useful for Russia to support the president of Venezuela, and Guaido’s putsch failed, and the US silently sulked.

We know little, only what is shown to us by our and foreign media, which also doesn’t know any more than we do. And so we, with our “knowledge” scraped from the media, undertake to criticise Putin, who possesses considerably more knowledge than we do, saying that he “was mistaken”, that he “did not venture”, that he “was afraid”, and so on.

In our faultfinding we resemble these “internet experts”, I only ask that offense isn’t taken if someone recognizes himself or herself in this description.

As I already said, Putin is pragmatic and ruthless. Putin was criticised also for the fact that he didn’t give the order to the Russian Air Force in Syria to down the missiles of the western coalition and to destroy the carriers of these missiles. You simply do not know Putin – if he did not give the order, then it means that he considers it to still be inexpedient.

If this step will be expedient, if Putin will consider it to be useful for Russia, then he will give this order without hesitation, with his quiet and inexpressive voice. If Putin will consider the destruction of all NATO countries, with the US at the head, to be expedient and useful for Russia, then he will give such an order – the NATO countries will disappear.

If Putin will consider liquidating the “fifth column” in Russia, as well as all liberal and communist movements, to be useful and reasonable, then it will be done – quickly, accurately, and ruthlessly.

So who you are, “comrade Putin”? And who sent you to Russia, literally at the “last moment”? When it already seemed that Russia died and disappears from the world map! So who you are, the saviour of Russia? Will we have answers one day?

Who knows? Perhaps in 20 years it will be declassified.

China’s Economic Record Vs US

By professor Richard Wolf

“For most of the last 20 years the rate of growth in China has been 2, 3 or 4 times that of the Unitedd States”

“In the United States real wages (The average wage of the U.S. worker) has stagnated. It has gone nowhere. In 1973 the average wage of an American, was able to buy more thing than it was in 2018. The real wage in the United States is less today than it was then.” – In the last 40 to 45 years American real income wages, their real wages have not gone up. The real hourly wage in the united states is lower today than it was in 1973.

Posted July 08, 2019

Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City.

Earlier he taught economics at Yale University (1967-1969) and at the City College of the City University of New York (1969-1973). In 1994, he was a Visiting Professor of Economics at the University of Paris (France), I (Sorbonne). Wolff was also regular lecturer at the Brecht Forum in New York City.

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Written in History: The Death of America’s Hyper-Power Fantasy

Written in History: The Death of America’s Hyper-Power Fantasy

07.11.2018

Written in History: The Death of America’s Hyper-Power Fantasy

In 1987, Paul Kennedy, a British professor of history at Yale University, unleashed a political and intellectual firestorm with the publication of his great (677-page) book, “The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers.” Kennedy produced a magisterial overview of the competition for global power over the past 500 years from 1500 AD to the present.

Kennedy proposed the thesis that any power that achieved, imagined it had achieved or sought to achieve and maintain a dominant hyper-power role of global dominance was doomed to lose it and then rapidly decline in overall power, wealth, prosperity and influence.

Kennedy argued – with a wealth of detail drawn from different nations over his vast period of half a millennium – that the very attempt to achieve and maintain such power forced every nation that attempted it into a ruinous pattern of strategic overstretch.

This demanded every major global empire in their turn to devote ruinously far too many economic resources to unproductive military power and ever more costly global commitments and conflicts.

The more ambitious the commitments, the quicker came military defeat, economic ruin and national collapse, Kennedy documented.

Kennedy published his book however at exactly the wrong moment for its abundantly documented conclusions and arguments to be taken seriously in the United States. The Cold War was just ending. The heroic actions of the Russian people in rejecting communism and leading in the dismantling of the Soviet Union were being misinterpreted as an eternal and lasting victory for the United States and for the forces of free market capitalism and minimum government regulation.

Kennedy was therefore subjected to a furious firestorm of abuse, especially from the emerging neoconservatives who under President George W Bush succeeded in imposing their reckless policies on nations across the Middle East and Eurasia. Kennedy, unlike his enraged critics was a gracious and tolerant gentleman as well as great scholar and took the firestorm in his stride.

Now more than 30 years after Kennedy published his great work, we can see how prescient, wise and visionary it truly was.

In 2016 President Donald Trump was elected on a platform of dealing with domestic crises raging from economic ruin and impoverishment to an out of control drug and opioid abuse epidemic and the collapse of law and order across the long US land border with Mexico.

That outcome provided telling testimony to the previous US policies of wasting at least $2 trillion on entirely unsuccessful nation-building and government-toppling projects ranging from Iraq to Afghanistan and since extended into such nations as Ukraine, Syria, and Libya

All the national pathologies of bankruptcy, exhaustion, decline and ever spreading human misery that Kennedy in his book traced in previous empires can now be clearly delineated in the policies of the post-Cold War United States.

The bottom line lesson to be drawn from Kennedy’s great book that so outraged neoconservatives at the time was a simple and stunning clear one: Unipolar Moments are just that and nothing more. They last for moments not ages.

Instead, the very attempt to maintain a unipolar moment of apparent global supremacy by any power automatically instead will raise up a host of challenges to that power that will rapidly exhaust and then doom it.

Kennedy traced this process of inexorable over – commitment and decline in 17th century Habsburg Spain. He followed it again in 18th century Bourbon France. He documented it once more in the rise, pride and inevitable fall of the British Empire and in the rash German attempts to create dominant global empires in both world wars of the 20th century.

A generation before Kennedy published his great work, British historian Correlli Barnett, focusing only on the British Empire, published in 1972 his own classic “The Collapse of British Power.” Barnett focused on a one, single unipolar moment – the 1920s and 1930s when the British ruling class, like their American successors today imagined that they were the divinely-appointed global policeman charged by Providence with maintaining their own conceptions of right and wrong over the whole world.

The British at least were reluctantly forced to cede independence to their vast global territories. It is doubtful whether the American people will be so lucky: The US Deep State establishment and their tame, unthinking media puppets remain blindly committed to inflexible expansion, conflict and strategic gambling with the peace and even survival of the world.

Thirty years after his magnum opus was published, Paul Kennedy’s message of warning remains unheeded. America’s Unipolar Moment is long since dead and gone. America’s pretensions to rule supreme as the world’s unchallenged hyper-power have become a dangerous and unsustainable fantasy.

A wakening to sanity is long overdue and the hour is late: National catastrophe can be the only other outcome.

Jeremy Corbyn, Jewish Assimilation and the Lobby

August 21, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

reed corbyn.jpg

By Gilad Atzmon

Although the following quotation is from an old text that refers to an earlier era and different geo-political conditions, it provides an impeccable analysis of the current Zionist campaign against Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party and the false alarm of antisemitsm.

“The ghettoized Ashkenazim (both in their Communist and their Zionist organizations) were inspired to obstruct emancipation by every possible device (including assassination in the last resort) while the story of their persecution was hammered, as an intimidatory warning, into the consciousness of the Western Jews and, as a rightful claim for succour, into that of the Christian West.

The Gentile politicians of the West presented these fictions to their peoples as truth, for they had found that powerful Jews, in all countries, were able to assist parties favoured by them with money, press support and votes; the return they required was support for the cause of the “persecuted” Jews in Russia and for the ‘return’ to Palestine. In effect this meant that politicians who sought these favours had to subordinate national interest to two causes ultimately destructive of all nation-states: the revolution (communism) and the ambition to acquire territory for the dominant race (Zionism).”* Douglas Reed 1955.

According to Douglas Reed the threat of antisemitism is designed primarily as a means to prevent Jewish assimilation. In The Wandering Who? I show that the fear of assimilation is not exclusive to Zionism, the Jewish political left and Jewish anti Zionism serve the same objective. By giving a place in the Jewish world to ethically inclined Jews they prevent such Jews from integrating with humanity as equals. The mechanism is straight forward: ‘You do not have to become a Goy in order to oppose Israeli criminality, you can just join JVP and oppose Israel ‘as a Jew.’ Similarly, you don’t have to oppose Corbyn’s detractors as an ordinary Labour member, you are better off celebrating your Jewish privilege and support Corbyn as a member of Jews for Jeremy or Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL).

Exclusively Jewish ‘dissenting’ bodies serve another crucial purpose: they operate to exclude gentiles from sensitive Jew-related discourse. Palestine solidarity has been dominated by Jewish ‘anti’ Zionist political bodies for more than a decade. These bodies have never been interested in solving the Palestinian plight; they have never echoed the Palestinian core demand for the right of return. Instead they have called for the ‘end of the occupation (practically legitimizing the Jewish State within pre 67 lines),’ the ‘Two States Solution,’ and BDS measures against Israel. Instead of fighting for the Palestinians’ right to return to their land, they have produced a noisy exchange between Zionists and the so-called ‘anti’s’ over Jews’ right to BDS. Thanks to the Jewish solidarity groups the discourse of the oppressed has been shaped by the sensitivities of the oppressor.

The same dynamic has been affecting Corbyn’s support campaign. Britain’s NO 1 anti racist doesn’t need a ‘kosher certificate’; from a supportive Jewish lobby. He doesn’t need the ‘as a Jew, I believe in Jeremy’ declarations. The same dynamic that obliterated the Palestinian Solidarity movement has so far had a disastrous effect on Corbyn’s supporters. They foolishly positioned  the ‘good Jews’ at the forefront of their campaign and let the campaign for the leader of the largest British national party be reduced to an internal Jewish spat in a greater Judeo-centric battle against assimilation.

Reed continues, “The Gentile politicians of the West presented these fictions (of Jewish persecution)  to their peoples as truth.” This is an unfortunately apt description of Home Secretary Sajid Javid’s call for Corbyn’s resignation over the ‘antisemitism’ crisis. Our PM, Therea May, also accused Jeremy Corbyn of allowing anti-Semitism to ‘run rife’ in Labour.  But why do they openly act this way? Do they really believe that antisemitism is ‘rife’ in the UK?

Back in 1955, decades before AIPAC was formed and the Conservative Friends of Israel was exposed as Israel’s long arm, Reed provided a possible explanation of current British political maneuvering.  They do it because they “found that powerful Jews, in all countries, were able to assist parties favoured by them with money, press support and votes.” Reed argues that Western politicians who accept the lobby’s favours scarify their national interests. This observation from 1955 explains why Britain and the USA have been fighting Zio-con wars and the prospect of world peace is progressively fading away.

When Douglas Reed died in 1976 his entire prolific career as a journalist and a commentator was dismissed. The Times‘ obituary condemned him as a ‘virulent anti-Semite.’  During my intellectual career I have learned that too often it is the so called ‘bigots,’ ‘anti-Semites’ and ‘racists’ who understand the world and its meaning better and ahead of anyone else. I guess that the take home message is: when they attempt to burn a book, make sure that this text is at the top of the pile next to your bed. If they attempt to silence a voice, attend to this voice before you do anything else. Because Jewish power is the power to obliterate the discussion on Jewish power.

* The Controversy of Zion – Douglas Reed pg. 177 to upload pdf of Reed’s book click here

To support Gilad’s legal cost

 

 

‘Martyrdom and Martyrdom’ & martyrdom: understanding Iran

August 09, 2018

by Ramin Mazaheri for the Saker Blog‘Martyrdom and Martyrdom’ & martyrdom: understanding Iran

“We are the nation of martyrdom, we are the nation of Imam Hossain, you better ask.” – Iranian Major General and Quds Force Commander Qasem Soleimani, July 27, 2018

That injunction for education was in response to US President Donald Trump’s threatening “all-caps tweet” to Iran. The exchange provides a rather timely news peg for this article, and it also confirms its necessity; this article relates the importance of Imam Hossain in modern Iranian society.

Despite the good advice, I doubt Trump will ask anyone about Imam Hossain, and it appears certain he lacks the intellectual stamina for “such a long” article.

The previous part of this series – ‘Cultural’ & ‘Permanent Revolution’ in Iranian Revolutionary Shi’ism – is rather necessary reading in order to understand this part…unless one is already familiar with the life and death of Imam Ali, is aware of the foundation of the Sunni-Shia intellectual schism, and also has (at least) an areligious historical perspective on the political situation of the early Islamic era immediately following the death of Prophet Mohammad. Hossain immediately followed Ali, his father, so such background knowledge will help one to fully grasp the historical-cultural-political-religious links presented here.

In this previous segments of this 11-part series I have mainly discussed facts: Why the World Socialist Web Site’s 3-part series claiming that “Islamic Socialism is a sham” is false and blind; how the centrally-planned economy of the Shahs paved the way for the socialist-inspired economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran; why “privatisation” in Iran is a misleading misnomer; and a 4-part sub-series on the Basij, a much-misunderstood institution which actually reflects the attempt of revolutionary Shi’ism to redistribute wealth and power to the poorer classes & to solidify support for Iran’s unique structure and culture.

While the goal of this series is to show how Iran is the ignored success story of socialism, it is also to shed light on the Western blackout of honest, accurate & balanced discussion on modern Iran. Therefore, I thought that discussions of Imams Ali and Hossain should have gone first, as they are the major motivating force of modern Iran…but that would have immediately turned off the receptivity towards learning new perspectives on Iran among the often anti-religion Western leftists. Therefore, I have saved these two religious-philosophical & cultural discussions for the end, because I wanted my discussion of Iran’s unique creations to be factual & structural and not philosophical. We can’t argue the clear facts which prove Iran’s socialism – not anymore.

But Iran’s (now totally-clear) socialist policies cannot be explained or understood solely by an intellectual lens of “socialism” – “socialism” does not fully explain the unique creation of the Basij, the unique creation of the post of Supreme Leader, the unique creation of the bonyads or state charity cooperatives to help run 10-15% of the economyetc. For full comprehension, religious-cultural knowledge must be added.

Because Iran is a unique (revolutionary) country, this means they have implemented policies which truly have no parallel. It also means the reasons for such policies are often not accepted by others, and even more rarely understood. The WSWS refuses to add in this component of “religion” – thus, their series could only falsely claim that Iran’s revolution was seemingly totally inspired by the Iranian Communist Tudeh Party, in a rather selective rewriting of history which aimed to marginalise the role of religion in Iran.

All of these unique (revolutionary) polices, structures and ideas can indeed be explained by socialism because they are socialist…but something crucial will still be lacking; one cannot fully understand them without clarifying additional philosophical, cultural and religious tenets which run deeper in Iran than the obviously vitally nourishing economic-democratic ideas of 19th-21st century socialism.

Is this more new scholarship linking Iran and socialism? Possibly, but links have already been made for many decades

The previous part drew the parallel – and quite likely for the first time ever – between Imam Ali’s failed “Cultural Revolution”, after the original political Revolution of Islam, and the Chinese Cultural Revolution.

Similarly, I cannot report finding internet links between Imam Hossain and the Trotskyist theory of “Permanent Revolution”, either.

However, I am not here to take credit. While I feel that Ali / China link was perhaps not able to be made in the heyday of the Iranian Revolution – as it is quite possible the true aims / goals / results of the Chinese Cultural Revolution were not known – the link between Hossain and “Permanent Revolution” was quite clearly obvious.

I contend that if I can’t find a record of this historical parallel being explicitly made there are clear reasons why:

The internet does not include the the cassette tapes, mosque lectures and fragile mimeographs which were the method of political communication in 1970s Iran.

Perhaps most Iranian thinkers wanted to give more credit to Islamic revolutionary figures, who were more relatable to the average Iranian.

The Revolution of 1979 was intensely patriotic: A repeated claim was that Iran already contained all it needed to have a modern, revolutionary, just society – holding up non-Iranian figures hurts that claim. And it’s not as if Trotsky, Mao or other foreigners were going to sue Iranians for using their ideas without attribution….

Iranian socialists were discredited-by-association in the 1980s by the horrific, detested, traitorous, totally illegitimate, most definitely NOT socialist cult known as the Mujahideen Khalq Organisation (known as the MKO or MEK, or People’s Mujahideen in English). Their unthinkable actions – stealing corpses to inflate body counts for propaganda purposes, fighting alongside Saddam, massacring Kurds, assassinating Iranian scientists, thousands of other terrorist acts, etc. – likely caused many to step away from proudly espousing the socialist intellectual lens which was so prevalent in the 1970s. It is mind-boggling to me that intelligent Western leftists ask me about the MKO as if they are some sort of viable leftist option in Iran…but it’s a big world, filled with too many insane cults – on the left, right and centre – to keep track of. The unforgivable MKO has also been gallingly whitewashed in the West by hundreds of millions of dollars from the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia and France (where they are now headquartered). Support for the MKO on the part of West repeatedly sends the Iranian government into an absolute tizzy, and rightly so – it is proof of the West’s appalling and murderous intentions against Iran (as if more proof was needed….).

I will quote extensively, as in the previous part, from seminal Iranian Islamic revolutionary thinker Ali Shariati – I think readers will see for themselves how very clearly he adapted some key Trotskyist ideals in his modern portrayal of Imam Hossain. Whether Shariati admitted it or not, “Permanent Revolution” is all over his ideas, slogans, analyses, etc.

I can verify from personal discussions with older, politically active that (duh!) Trotsky was indeed one of the key figures on their minds in the 1970s and beyond.

But I am only a journalist reporting what I have found: the explicit link is not found, but I am both a poor journalist and poor researcher. I do not seriously expect Iranians to tell me that Imam Ali-Mao links were widely made, but I do expect them to tell me Imam Hossain – Trotsky links were.

Regardless, credit for linking Ali / China & Hossain / Trotsky – plus another $0.50 – will only get me a cup of coffee, as the saying goes (at least it did prior to inflation); the main thing is to understand modern Iran in order to promote human brotherhood.

The huge misunderstanding on ‘martyrdom’ between Iran and the West

It is often said that “self-sacrifice” and “martyrdom” are the main principles of the 1979 Islamic Revolution and Iranian society today…but this fact is of almost of no value to Westerners, because in 2018 there is a fundamental misunderstanding between the West and Iran on what “martyrdom” means and is.

Two parties cannot create mutual understanding if definitions of words are totally different. This article aims to rectify that.

But to do that, it is necessary for non-Muslims to learn about Imam Hossain, the grandson of Mohammad, the son of Imam Ali, and the 3rd Shia Caliph but who was not a Caliph for Sunni because Hossain was cheated out of it by Muawiyah, founder of the Umayyad dynasty and the 6th Sunni Caliph (this last statement is a universal historical consensus and not solely a Shia one – this was all explained in the previous part of this series).

In short: in 680 AD Imam Hossain (spelled Husayn or Hussein or Hossain in Arabic) marched off to certain death at Karbala, Iraq, rather than sanction the government of the Umayyad dynasty, which Imam Hossain and his father perceived as insufficiently Islamic and insufficiently revolutionary. This martyrdom has inspired a feeling of “Permanent Revolution” within Shia Iranians.

Many anti-religion leftists falsely assume this martyrdom was solely the result of a dispute on religious doctrine – I suppose it was, but I am 100% certain it was an intensely political act as well. Nobody is forcing anyone to accept the religious aspect – Islam can never be forced – and this means that non-Muslims can view Ali and Hossain in a purely political, areligious, historical context. But the widespread failure to do this has had huge consequences in modern political analysis.

The yearly pilgrimages to Karbala, Iraq, to commemorate Hossain are among the largest peaceful gatherings in human history. Even though 10-20 million people attend, they are totally ignored by Western media. That’s a pity, because even though “God is dead” to Western culture, the Arba’een pilgrimages shows how very, very, very living it is to Shia. Like that or not – this galvanising power cannot be ignored. As Soleimani said to Trump: “you better ask” about Hossain.

As I explained in the previous article, the Revolution of Islam was a sweeping & immediate political revolution as well as a revolution in religious thought and practice. This duality cannot be argued in the slightest, nor is there a single reason why they should be contradictory. Therefore, socio-cultural-historical parallels abound with other the great political revolutions in human history.

Non-Muslims and Westerners have much to glean politically from the Revolution of Islam, if they can only set aside their anti-religion bigotry. Again: one can examine the early Islamic age from an areligious perspective because it was a political & social revolution, unlike Christianity after the life or the death of Jesus son of Mary.

Regardless, the political structures and daily life in the Islamic Republic of Iran in 2018 cannot be understood without grasping the importance of Imam Hossain in our collective unconscious. Unlike Jesus in the secular West, Hossain is a constant, universal presence in Iran (and for the many non-Shia, as well), and a perpetual reminder of the need for moral political action.

The second, failed generation of Islamic revolutionaries

As the previous article described, to many Iranian thinkers like Ali Shariati, after Prophet Mohammad’s death Islam was literally hijacked by slackening revolutionaries who forgot the socio-political message of Mohammad in order to create the imperialist Umayyad empire.

In 656 Imam Ali became Caliph and tried to stop this ideological and religious slackening, and thus represents, in modern terms, the Cultural Revolution in the Revolution of Islam, just as China had a Cultural Revolution years after their Chinese Communist Revolution (or quite similar to how Iran had the world’s only other official Cultural Revolution, from 1980-83).

But, in 661 Ali is assassinated. Ali’s son Imam Hassan becomes the Caliph (the 5th to Sunnis, the 2nd to Shia) but he has inherited a shattered administration. He is forced to abdicate to the politically & militarily powerful governor of largely Christian Damascus, Muawiyah, who is declared Caliph. The wishes of Mohammad are denied, the bloodline of Mohammad is broken, and the officially-secular & imperialist Umayyad dynasty is founded.

Imam Hassan, daughter of Mohammad’s daughter Fatima and Imam Ali, retires to Medina and dies in 670. After Ali’s death Umayyad clerics spent 60+ years making state-ordered ritual curses of Ali during public prayers, so Hassan was clearly in a very weak position. When he dies he is even denied burial next to his grandfather, Prophet Mohammad, and his relatives in Medina. I quote from Ali Shariati’s Martyrdom and Martyrdom:

“Imam Hassan, the manifestation of loneliness and isolation in Islamic Society, even in the Medina of the Prophet, clearly shows how the Truth-seeking party in Islam is utterly shattered. The new force of revolution completely overwhelms everyone and everything and conquers in every domain. Now it is Hossain’s turn.”

That “new force” is those who split off to create Sunni Islam, which is why the Shia Shariati continues, unequivocally:

“Hossain inherits the Islamic movement. He is the inheritor of a movement which Mohammed has launched, Ali has continued and in whose defence Hassan makes the last defence. Now there is nothing left for Hossain to inherit: no army, no weapons, no wealth, no power, no force, not even an organized following. Nothing at all. ”

Not only does the first two sentences of that paragraph name nearly all the males in my family, but it should emphatically make clear the historical-ideological view of Shia Islam, and how it obviously sharply differs from Sunnis.

The post-Mohammad era: When Shi’ism was truly an underground & political movement

Just as I wondered if Mao had any idea of Imam Ali’s message of Cultural Revolution, I wonder if Lenin had any idea of what Hossain stood for? I rather doubt it, but I’m certain the he, too, would have approved.

To paraphrase Shariati, who is paraphrasing Lenin: Hossain and the very few true revolutionaries are aware that the revolution is being compromised, and are asking – “What should be done?”

Certainly, there were no lack of ideas of appeasement being flung at Hossain: fatalism (God wishes it this way), are you so innocent that you can rectify the whole community, jihad is not the only path to God, asceticism is so personally pleasing, don’t oppose a Damascus which is spreading Islam, people judge by what they see so Islam must show a rich face to the Byzantine Romans and Persians to win them over, many temples and churches have been replaced by mosques, Islam is gaining in importance, Muslims are getting the top jobs, don’t cause trouble when there is Holy War against Christians in Europe and Zoroastrians in Iran, opposing those aristocrats is unrealistic and combative, we must win over our own aristocrats, do not mix earthly matters with heavenly ones, etc.

It all adds up to a call of: support the ruling system, and end your idealistic, permanent revolution.

This is something rejected by revolutionary Shi’ism, because the results of such a choice are clear:

Sixty years have passed since the migration of the Prophet. Everything earned by the Revolution has been destroyed. All of the successes earned a century before have been abolished. The Book brought by the Prophet is placed on the spears of the Umayyad (literally, during their first war against Imam Ali). The culture and ideas which Islam had developed through jihad, struggle and efforts in the hearts and minds of the people became a means for explaining the Umayyads rule.

Yes. In these black times the ignorance of aristocracy is being revived. Power is being dressed in piety and sacredness. The desires for liberty and equality created by Islam in the hearts of those sacrificed for power or policy are breaking down. Tribal (sectarian) ignorance has replaced the humanitarian revolution.

Jihad has become the means for massacre. Religious taxes are a means of public plunder. Prayer is a means of deceiving the public. Unity has been covered with the mass of profanity. Islam has become a chain of surrendering.

Nations are being taken into slavery as before.”

Obviously, Marxist- and socialist-inspired condemnations abound, as is the desire for modern revolution.

It is perhaps natural that when the Iranian Shia Shariati focuses on the 50-year period between the death Mohammad until the martyrdom of Hossain – from 632 until 680 – he is intensely critical of the lack of political revolutionary commitment on the part of the entire second revolutionary generation except for what is a very real “Shiite Resistance Movement”, which is truly an underground political phenomenon.

Imam Hossain answers Lenin’s question

In 680 the Caliph Muawiyah dies. Muawiyah’s betrayal of the House of Mohammad culminated in the handing of the caliphate to his son, Yazid. This ended the consultative and democratic caliphate and inaugurated monarchy and the Umayyad dynasty.

Yazid would go on to commit terrible atrocities at the Battle of Al-Harrah, which led to the looting of Medina by the Syrian army in 683, and then even an unthinkable siege of Mecca, leading to the burning of the Kabaa. The siege only ended when Yazid died from falling off his horse. These acts obviously damaged Umayyad authority among the People and strengthened the argument of the early Shia.

By 750 the Iranian-Iraqi Abbasid Revolution would kick the Umayyads out of the entire Middle East, while the Great Berber Revolt had kicked them out of the Maghreb just a few years prior. West and East Africa were not yet Muslim at this time.

The ethnic (Arab) elitists but religiously-tolerant Umayyads only found fertile soil in Europe, ruling Spain for several centuries. The Abbasid Caliphate would rule Islam for five centuries, replacing the feudal Arab Caliphate with a multi-ethnic, religiously tolerant Islamic Golden Age that lasted until the Mongol Invasion in 1258. The Mamluks of Egypt fought off the Mongols, thus sparing not just the Maghreb but all of Africa, and also allowing the Abbasids to re-center the Caliphate (religiously, but not politically) until the Ottoman conquest in 1517.

Thus a truly “Muslim World” – one in which unity is based only on Islam and not Arab ethnicity & Islam – does not begin until after the Umayyads. Shia obviously feel that Imam Ali and Imam Hossain perceived this sooner than anyone.

Shariati describes the view of Hossain back in 680: Hossain surely foresaw the crumbling of the Umayyad’s legitimacy – due to an obvious slackening of revolutionary integrity, the corruption of revolutionary ideals and culture, and the renunciation of political & social involvement;

“Imam Hossain, as a responsible leader, sees that if he remains silent, Islam will change into a religion of the government. Islam will be changed into a military-economic power and nothing more. Islam will become as other regimes and powers.

He is alone, unarmed. Opposing him is one of the most savage empires of the world which is being covered over by the fairest and most deceiving cover of piety, sacredness and unity which the ruling power possesses. He is alone. He is a lonely man who is responsible to this school of thought.

Whoever is more aware is more responsible, and who is more aware than Imam Hossain? What is his responsibility? He is responsible to fight against the elimination of the truth, the destruction of the rights of the people, annihilation of all of the values, abolition of all of the memories of the Revolution, destruction of the message of the Revolution, and to protect the most beloved of cultures and the faith of the people, for their destruction is the aim of the most filthy enemies of the people. They want to once again create the unknown, mysterious deaths, exiles, putting people in chains; the worshipping of pleasure, discriminations, the gathering of wealth; the selling of human values, faith, honor, creating new religious foolishness, racism, new aristocracy, new ignorance and a new polytheism.”

It’s a powerful historical analysis, and one which combines modern, socialist-inspired political thought with Abrahamic morality. The Shah had obviously re-created these evils, but it’s clear that just toppling a tyrant is no guarantee of revolution.

It should thus be clear how Iranian Revolutionary Shi’ism was created, how it was shaped by the lenses of socialism, and why it galvanised mullahs and masses far more than the Tudeh Party ever did.

But Hossain was totally weakened and could not depose the powers in Damascus. Therefore, he used his one weapon – his certain, aware death at Karbala.

The death of Imam Hossain – the birth of ‘living artists’ in the future

Hossain, then in Mecca, was invited by the people of Kufa, Iraq, (the future first seat of the Abbasid Caliphate 70 years later, showing they maintained their revolutionary zeal & culture ) to be their leader. Kufans had come around after 20 years of rule by Muawiyah. Hossain accepts.

However, Hossain gets word that Yazid’s troops were killing his sympathisers and blocking the gates – going to Kufa thus means certain death, given Hossain’s lack of power and resources.

Imam Hossain had two choices: go to Medina and swear allegiance to the new Umayyad dynasty, or march to the certain death at Kufa. Sanctioning imperialism is never Islamic, nor a modern revolution. Seventy kilometres from the Kufa gate Hossain’s band of family and loyal companions, 72 people, chose to fight the Battle of Karbala.

“He leaves Mecca to reply to the question, ‘How?’… (to) all those who can see, feel, understand and thus suffered and felt themselves responsible, who are thus looking for a revolution, (and) are then asking “What should be done?”

Clearly, the aware death of Hossain was selected by revolutionary Shi’ism as a direct answer to the title of Lenin’s famous pamphlet, which he took from a Russian book from 1863 which called for socialist self-sacrifice (martyrdom, to Iranians).

I quote Shariati at some length, because I cannot decide what should be omitted, and also because Western readers must drastically re-orient their conception of the word “martyrdom” if they want to understand the Shia and Iranian version (and the version very close to Sunni Muslims, as well.)

“The great teacher of martyrdom has now arisen in order to teach those who consider jihad to relate only to those who have the ability, and victory to be only in conquering. Martyrdom is not a loss, it is a choice. A choice where by the warrior sacrifices himself on the threshold of the temple of freedom and the altar of love, and is victorious.

Hossain, the heir of Adam, who gives life to the children of mankind, and the successor of the great prophets, who taught mankind ‘how to live’, has now come to teach mankind ‘how to die’.

Hossain teaches that ‘black death’ is the miserable fate of a humbled people who accept scorn in order to remain alive. For death chooses those who are not brave enough to choose martyrdom. Death chooses them!

The word shahid, martyr, contains the highest form of what I am saying. It means being present; bearing witness; one who bears witness. It also means that which is sensible and perceptible; the one whom all turn towards. Finally it means model, pattern, example.

Martyrdom: to arise and bear witness in our culture and in our religion is not a bloody and accidental happening. In other religions and tribal histories, martyrdom is the sacrificing of the heroes who are killed in the battles of the enemy. It is considered to be a sorrowful accident, full of misery. Those who are killed in this way are called martyrs and their death is called martyrdom.

But in our culture, martyrdom is not a death which is imposed by an enemy upon our warriors. It is a death which is desired by our warrior, selected with all of the awareness, logic, reasoning, intelligence, understanding, consciousness and alertness that a human being has.

Look at Hossain. He releases his life, leaves his town and arises in order to die because he has no other means for his struggle to condemn and disgrace his enemy. He selects this in order to render aside the deceiving curtains which covered the ugly faces of the ruling power. If he cannot defeat the enemy in this way, at least he can disgrace them. If he cannot conquer the ruling power, he can at least condemn it by injecting new blood and the belief of jihad into the dead bodies of the second-generation of the Revolution revealed to the Prophet.

Quite a passage – far from being a tragedy or a screaming kamikaze pilot hopped up on speed, Iranian martyrdom is based on intelligent and sensitive awareness. It is obviously highly political, and contains an urgent and progressive (anti-reactionary) political message.

In summary, in our culture – contrary to other schools where it is considered to be an accident, an involvement, a death imposed upon a hero, a tragedy – (it) is a grade, a level, a rank. It is not a means but is a goal itself. It is originality. It is a completion. It is a lift. It itself is midway to the highest peak of humanity and it is a culture.”

This is the “martyrdom” which is imbued in Iranian culture. How imbued is it? Iranians hear the word multiple times daily in the common greeting between two friends or even two strangers: “Gorban-e-shoma” (“I will be your martyr”). Many Iranians will say that I am over-exaggerating the literal importance of this phrase, but that IS the literal translation. To me, commonplace linguistic phrases reveal a culture’s true soul; but it is true that nobody is really promising immediate martyrdom on the other’s behalf.

(I always thought this Farsi phrase grew out of Koran 4:86 – “Answer a greeting in kinder words than those said to you in their greeting, or at least as kind. God keeps account of all things.” What could be a kinder greeting to a total stranger than promising to die for them?)

However, only the thick-headed would imagine Iranian martyrdom to be only concerned with death – such a society would quickly empty itself of inhabitants.

Martyrdom is also the constant little sacrifices of one’s individual well-being for the sake of society, and in much, much less drastic forms than death. Martyrdom essentially exists in order to activate the “living artist” who improves society by moving beyond mere individualism.

Martyrdom and Martyrdom and ANOTHER Martyrdom

“In European countries the word ‘martyr’ stems from ‘mortal’ which means ‘death’ or ‘to die’. One of the basic principles in Islam and in particular in Shiite culture, however, is ‘sacrifice and bear witness’. So instead of martrydom, i.e. death, it essentially means ‘life’, ‘evidence’, ‘testify’, ‘certify’.”

Martyrdom is, of course, one of the central messages of Jesus to Christians…but not as significantly to Muslims, however: the Koran explicitly rejects the idea that God could allow a messenger and prophet of God to be killed in such a way. Indeed, for Islam Jesus was not killed on the cross – it was only made to appear that way by God. In Islam faith always wins over evil, therefore the death of Jesus on the cross is illogical – how could Jesus’ executioners have won?

That is a complicated issue, but bringing it up helps us clarify the roots of the difference in the meaning of “martyrdom” to Muslims and Westerners. It also helps illuminate why the martyrdom of Imam Hossain is so important in Islam – he is essentially the primary Abrahamic martyr to Muslims.

But I think Shariati rather significantly misunderstands “martyrdom” as defined in the West. Although he is correct that they view it in a far more negative fashion than in Islam, I think Shariati’s view is wrong by failing to include two key points:

Firstly, Shariati does not acknowledge that – for Christians themselves – there is also a positive message of Jesus’ martyrdom: which is, that the key is to emulate Jesus when it comes to his martyrdom.

However, I believe that West European Christians (not East European) have proven incapable of grasping this positive message. Therefore, the point is moot for the Western half of the continent.

Secondly, Shariati did not grasp that many West Europeans mistakenly appear to think that because Jesus died for our sins, Jesus thus ended the need for more martyrdom. This quite significantly compounds the disagreeableness of “martyrdom” to Westerners.

Indeed, “martyr” is a term used only to disparage in Western European cultures. The only time one hears it in English is in the phrase “Don’t be a martyr”. The word and concept are similarly totally absent in French.

The word “martyr” is never even used to describe who has died unjustly (the primary view in Sunni cultures) – not for a Palestinian protester killed by Zionists, nor a Jew killed in the Holocaust.

For the West, I believe that martyrdom has evolved to mean “an unnecessary exaggeration of suffering” – as though you are pretentiously claiming that you are doing something on the level of Jesus Christ. When it comes to martyrdom in the West the message is unambiguous: don’t do it at any time. As I am aware of the Iranian version and its elevation of martyrdom, I always found this cultural difference quite, quite surprising.

I think the negative Western view reveals two flaws, as martyrdom is clearly a positive thing: a fundamental cultural indifference to unjust suffering, at least when compared with Muslim and Iranian culture, and also a distaste for suffering on behalf of any cause. The latter observation is caused by the rampant individualism of the capitalist West: anyone suffering for a cause necessarily and annoyingly reminds them of their fundamentally self-centred lives – thus their society discourages it.

There is also rampant nihilism in the West, which is not at all the same as religious fatalism, and which is yet another cause of their distaste for martyrdom: if all is pointless, why die for anything? Martyrdom is thus negatively associated with a needless death, when for Sunni Muslims martyrdom is associated with an unjust death, and for Shia it is associated with a selfless death.

Thus Westerners view “martyrdom” as both a needless death as well as a negative, self-aggrandising act, while Sunnis view it positively but primarily as an act of injustice, whereas Shia & Iranians view martyrdom as a necessary, positive way to effectuate social change. Therefore, we really are talking about “Martyrdom and Martyrdom and Martyrdom”.

Martyrdom to Iranians is thus actually the equivalent of English “altruism”.

But, just like martyrdom, altruism conflicts with Western capitalist-imperialist ideology, as it is the belief in or practice of disinterested and selfless concern for the well-being of others.

We should thus not be surprised that “altruism” is a word which almost never heard in Western daily discourse, nor in their political discourse.

Therefore, even prior to Basij teenagers being forced into wartime self-sacrifice by Western aggression, “martyr” was something with negative connotations for Westerners and positive connotations for Iranians.

The Western denigration of martyrdom forces the denigration of Iranian revolutionary Shi’ism

This Iranian conception of “martyrdom” should explain much in the first 8 parts of this series, no?

Why wage revolution against the Shah for decades? Why sit in opposition to East and West? Why be so uncaring of Western public opinion? Why be so stridently revolutionary? Why condemn Israel when it only reaps trouble? Why give 15% of the economy to charity foundations? Why create the Basij? Why refuse to participate in the dominant neoliberal ideology of global imperialist capitalism?

I cannot see the Iranians agreeing to continue to suffer while Tehran continues to finance foreign movements like Hezbollah in Lebanon or the Houthis in Yemen,” Jean-François Seznec, professor of international relations at Johns Hopkins University, told France24 media just yesterday. You can’t see it, really, Mr. Hotshot professor? I can, because I understand the Iranian conception of “martyrdom” – you clearly are another clueless academic.

(And I know that polls show that all of these non-Iranian revolutionary movements – as well as in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere – are massively supported in a democratic majority in Iran).

Martyrdom – in the unique Iranian definition, of course – is a large part of the answer to all those questions I just posed. Whatever the West wants to hide, forget or put a smiling capitalist-imperialist face on – Iran chooses martyrdom, or would like to.

So we must relearn what Iran means by “martyrdom” – they are talking about “Iranian Shia martyrdom”. The right terms in English are really: self-sacrifice, altruism, social justice.

These desires explain why 10-25 million Iranians have joined the Basij – for the overwhelmingly majority it is essentially just a social hobby which encourages (moderate, dull) self-sacrifice for societal betterment. You do get some social and monetary benefits, which are especially of importance to the lower class, but for many Basiji it also fills this emotional need that “I need to martyr some of myself and my time for others”. This emotional need exists exactly the same in the West, but it does not exist in the same intensity, nor does it exist in a government-supported form.

The West, with their different definition of “martyrdom”, and in combination with their hatred of socialism & Islamic democracy, wants people to believe that Iranian “martrydom” is all wild-eyed death when it it is 99.9% the mere provision of some rather mundane civil service / community improvement instead of watching TV. Iranian are not THAT great at being martyrs!

Yet the West hears “martyr” and assumes the worst about those who support Iranian revolutionary Shi’ism,

For an example, I return to the book on the Basij I reviewed in this series, Captive Society, by Saied Golkar. It is the only book ever written about the Basij in the West, but it is clearly a book which is against the Basij.

Golkar is discussing the WSBO – the Women’s Society Basij Organization, which is the main Basij group for women.

“The ideal family, which is promoted by the WSBO, is called the Islamic Revolutionary family or ‘family of holy defense’. The Islamic revolutionary family has specific features, according to WSBO head Minoo Aslani. The family is the place of modesty and chastity, where women take moral care of their family members. It is a place where women encourage charitable and spiritual affairs among their children and husbands, and where women should speak about religion and the Islamic Revolution.”

To many this is a happy, typical, politically-modern home concerned with moral social conduct. For Westerners and those who oppose modern Iran – this is some sort of horror, because the government should never get involved with these types of values, as they are purely personal (and thus should vary extremely wildly, apparently).

Golkar thus descends into fear-mongering, and surely finds plenty of receptive minds in the West: Golkar refers to a scholar which labelled this kind of family a “martyropath family”. He believes that Basij women are being brainwashed into training a “martyropath,” or a person who is enchanted by death and wants to die to preserve Iran.

To me the only “-path” of any sort here is Golkar, for so obviously trying to portray Basij families as fascist psychopaths. It is incredible that this supposedly-objective scholar is trying to portray a “martyropath” as a credible description of an average Basiji.

But this is what people always do with Iran – they portray them as insane, death-loving, religious fundamentalists instead of human beings.

No Iranian woman (who does not belong in a mental institution) trains their child for martyrdom – they only train their children to be altruistic and selfless. There should be no doubt that in probably every single case of martyrdom known to man, it was ultimately done against the mother’s wishes (and a father’s). I am not a parent myself, but I think any parent would immediately agree with that.

As has been reported for the case of martyrs in Iran during the Iraq war: to choose a martyr’s death is a lonely and individual decision, and families did their best to stop it. However, this does not mean that – after the deed was done – families did not also see the glory in the death of defending their community, family, nation; this is no different than in any other nation with any of their soldiers.

The reality is this: Basiji women are merely being encouraged to be modern revolutionaries, and that is what is frightening to the counter-revolutionary West.

Just as there is a downside to the West’s “never martyrdom” approach, there is a downside to Shia Iran’s “martyrdom please” approach as well. For example, missing a couple meals during Ramadan does not make one the world’s greatest Muslim martyr. It is quite easy for Iranians to puff themselves up as great Muslims and revolutionaries because they have mentally accumulated 10 million insignificant instances of where they put the needs of someone else first, i.e., simply done the right thing. If any culture could break their own arms from patting themselves on their own backs, it is Iran.

However, a society full of martyrs is certainly far, far more desirable than a society full of self-serving individualists, no? This is essentially the point to take away from this article, I think.

The message of Imam Hossain remains a political beacon

The willful ignorance of the revolutionary, unique and socialist-inspired structures of revolutionary Shi’ism which created Iranian Islamic Socialism is only dangerous for Westerners: they are the ones who are misled about the nature of modern Iran; they are the ones who have such a terrified, “Muslim martyropaths will get me” worldview; they are the ones who are deluded by the paranoia that it is Iran which is targeting them and not the other way around; and they are the ones whose societies are worsened by the failure to transplant some of Iran’s unique solutions to modern problems in their own country; I could go on and on listing such problems.

It should be now quite clear that Iranians have re-intepreted the martyrdom of Imam Hossain to coincide with something quite similar to the Trotskyist socialist concept of “permanent revolution”.

We should see how something like the Basij – whether one approves of them or not, and I am officially neutral on their value – clearly was originally created to try and incarnate this idea of Perpetual Revolution for which Trotsky (and Lenin and other socialists) had different yet very similar notions. By constantly recruiting new members, training them in modern revolutionary Shi’ism and granting them affirmative action spots in the universities and government, it is clear that they are an effort to constantly refresh the Islamic Revolution and to constantly reshape Iranian culture in favor of Iranian Islamic Socialism. Again, I merely condense here the objective conclusions proven in my 4-part sub-series on the Basij and do not judge nor promote.

Obviously, revolutionary Shi’ism did not sprout overnight, nor did it need a war to make its values widespread; it has all existed in Iran for some time, yet it was the Islamic Republic of Iran which made these the officially-sanctioned values of the government for the first time ever.

Hopefully people will realize that Iranian “martyrdom” and its “permanent revolution” is something which is based both on ancient sources of unimpeachable morality as well as the unimpeachable modern political ideas of democratic progress and economic equality. The slogans of 1979 – “Every place is Karbala!” and “The martyr is the heart of human history! – reflect this reality.

“Every place is Petrograd” and “The revolutionary is the heart of human history” could have been taken from Trotsky.

Agree with Iranians or not, modern Iran is indeed revolutionary, and thus quite in keeping with its ideological heroes – Prophet Mohammad, Imam Ali, Imam Hossain, Lenin, Mao, Trotsky, Castro, Algeria and others. It is clear who deserves top billing; it’s amazing that Western leftists still do not even know the cast of main characters…but that is out of ignorance or willful blindness.

I hope these articles have also shown that one need not be an Iranian nor a Muslim to accept that the Iranian Revolution is proof that Islam can be a progressive revolutionary force once again. One also does not have to be a Muslim to see that socialism will not advance globally without first accepting those facts.

***********************************

This is the 9th article in an 11-part series which explains the economics, history, religion and culture of Iran’s Revolutionary Shi’ism, which produced modern Iranian Islamic Socialism.

Here is the list of articles slated to be published, and I hope you will find them useful in your leftist struggle!

The WSWS, Irans economy, the Basij & Revolutionary Shiism: an 11-part series

How Iran Got Economically Socialist, and then Islamic Socialist

What privatisation in Iran? or Definitely not THAT privatisation

Parallels between Irans Basij and the Chinese Communist Party

Irans Basij: The reason why land or civil war inside Iran is impossible

A leftist analysis of Irans Basij – likely the first ever in the West

Irans Basij: Restructuring society and/or class warfare

Cultural’ Permanent Revolution’ in Iranian Revolutionary Shiism

‘Martyrdom and Martyrdom’ & martyrdom: understanding Iran

‘The Death of Yazdgerd’: The greatest political movie ever explains Iran’s revolution (available with English subtitles for free on Youtube here)

Iran détente after Trump’s JCPOA pull out? We can wait 2 more years, or 6, or…

Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for PressTV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has appeared in various journals, magazines and websites, as well as on radio and television. He can be reached on Facebook.

The Essential Saker II
The Essential Saker II: Civilizational Choices and Geopolitics / The Russian challenge to the hegemony of the AngloZionist Empire
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The Essential Saker: from the trenches of the emerging multipolar world

‘Cultural’ & ‘Permanent Revolution’ in Iranian Revolutionary Shi’ism

August 03, 2018

by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog‘Cultural’ & ‘Permanent Revolution’ in Iranian Revolutionary Shi’ism

Trotsky was and, in as much as he lives in his writings, remains the foremost strategist of world socialist revolution. Hence the indissoluble association of his name with the theory and strategy of Permanent Revolution—an association familiar even to those like Mazaheri….”

That is a quote from the World Socialist Web Site’s 3-part series designed to rebut my work popularising the concept of “Iranian Islamic Socialism”, and by extension to also rebut “Islamic Socialism”, “Christian Socialism”, “Hindu Socialism”, etc.

Well, a supremely important association which I think is not at all familiar even to those like the World Socialist Web Site is that, for Shia, Imam Ali “remains the foremost strategist of world cultural revolution”. Nor are they likely at all familiar that the conscious martyrdom of his son, Imam Hossain (spelled Husayn or Hussein or Hussain in Arabic), makes him “the foremost strategist of world permanent revolution”.

This article will show that there is room for all of them in socialism, and in the fight against capitalism and imperialism.

The reason for this is because Prophet Mohammad, unlike Jesus son of Mary, undoubtedly led the greatest, most immediate and most sweeping religious and political revolution ever. This undeniable fact of humankind’s history can certainly continue to be ignored, but it will remain a historical fact.

This should be quite relevant to the WSWS in 2018 because the messages of Imam Ali and Imam Hossain have been combined, over many decades, with socialism to arrive at the unique culture proclaimed in the 1980s and which I refer to as “Iranian Islamic Socialism”.

That is a on an undeniable socio-political-cultural level. On an intellectual level it is just as crystal-clear: 20th/21st century Iranians re-examined Islam through the intellectual lenses provided by Marxism, Trotskyism, Maoism and all the other socialist schools of thought, and this led to the intellectual concept known as Revolutionary Shi’ism.

All of these facts can certainly continue to not be discussed outside of Iran, but Iran will keep adding layer upon layer of solder upon these two ideas from two different historical eras – the early Islamic era and the modern era of socialism – and certainly all without me clarifying it or commenting upon it.

It is unfortunate – because it shows their lack of crucial & objective historical knowledge – that just as Western leftists do not appreciate the political-economic-social revolutionary aspects of Prophet Mohammad, even fewer appreciate the similar qualities of Imam Ali. That will be the basis of this part, while Part 9 will discuss the related political qualities of Imam Hossain. These are not two figures I have plucked from obscurity – they are the two key leaders of the Shia religion, as well as successful revolutionary political beacons in two eras separated by 1300 years.

For the WSWS, Western leftists, and many Western rightists, religion is not and should not be political. People keep telling this to Iranians as if we have not heard it before…and quite obviously totally ignored it!

“It is surprising! For what purpose then, was the Prophet fighting? For what purpose was Imam Ali fighting? Is it not the question of politics? Is it not the fact that criminals are ruling over the people?”

In these two articles on Ali and Hossain I will often quote from Revolutionary Shi’ism proponent Ali Shariati and his Martyrdom and Martyrdom, a collection of his lectures on this issue.

Westerners may believe that religion and politics must be separated in a government: to use their sacred, inviolable and individualistic phrase, they “have that right” in their own countries. What they cannot believe – unless they willingly wish to remain in error – is that politics and religion are somehow two fundamentally unrelated socio-intellectual domains: both endeavour to tell us how to live, after all. It is notable that the Western view also lacks the democratic majority in a global sense – perhaps one finds that significant.

What is certain is that if one side does not give up…we will just go around in circles endlessly: Westerners with their dogmatic secularism and rabid laïcité (both of which latently support Christianity), and on the other side people like Shariati, myself and countless billions of others with: It is surprising! For what purpose then….

How imperialism dies: Learning from socialism’s mistakes and unlearning capitalist propaganda

The WSWS seems to think that I have invented something new:

“He again insists that socialism in Iran can galvanize the masses only if fused with Shia Islam. This argument is far easier to make if one ignores, as Mazaheri does, any consideration of the pivotal role of the Stalinist Tudeh Party in the development of the Iranian workers’ movement.”

I am not insisting anything about the galvanising power of Shia Islam in Iran – this is what has already happened. Truly, I am a journalist just reporting the facts. These are facts which are, unfortunately, not reported by many others.

However, this article will provide some new scholarship on Iran: I will show how there is a clear parallel between the aims of Imam Ali and Mao, both of whom attempted Cultural Revolutions after they perceived their initial political revolutions to be failing.

This is of vital interest, precedent and perspective to all political revolutionaries, and not just Shia and Chinese ones.

Now, I don’t want much credit here because I will use Shariati’s own scholarship to show that he essentially proved this…but he did not know it. The likely reason is that people like Shariati (died 1977) did not have the chance to unlearn the anti-socialist propaganda about China’s Cultural Revolution, which I helped debunk here. Furthermore, Shariati was so powerful because he was incredibly and uniquely adept at employing Marxist perspectives on Islam, but he was also anti-Marxist in the sense that he did not want formal communists to come to power in Iran – he was not inclined to openly laud Chinese communists, perhaps. Indeed, much of Shariati’s writing on communism is negative and filled with now-outdated ideas that communism is inescapably totalitarian, whereas modern socialist countries are not the USSR in 1942.

While there is much writing on Marxism and socialism on the Farsi-language internet, there is apparently no claim like the one I am making. Nor is there much on the claims of the next part in this series – the link between Imam Hossain and the need for “Permanent Revolution”, but it is not the desert of the Imam Ali-Cultural Revolution claim. However, I feel certain these links are easily proven, and that they likely were made in the revolutionary heyday of the 1970s…back when Revolutionary Shi’ism was disseminated via cassette tapes of Shariati and Khomenei lectures and flimsy mimeographs. I’m glad the internet makes the registration of such ideas seemingly permanent.

The continued moral failures of capitalism and imperialism mean that socialism – from an economic and democratic perspective – is the only way forward. Iran, and others, will never give up religion, so that is a non-issue, but understanding historical parallels shows the universality of the human economic-political experience. The ability to appreciate Prophet Mohammad, Ali, Hossain, Jesus, Moses, Mao, Trotsky and others as common socio-political liberators draws us all closer together, and closer to the goal of peace and shared prosperity.

This what’s makes the above claim by the WSWS rather pernicious, and it marks a turning point in their tract: it’s when the WSWS tries to appropriate the credit for the 1979 Iranian Revolution away from Revolutionary Shi’ism in order to give it to the Iranian Communist Party. And to give it lock, stock and barrel, furthermore. This is why the bulk of their series discusses the history of the Tudeh Party. Both ideologies existed, but one obviously prevailed; both ideologies existed, and to completely ignore one of them is obviously bad history. This appears like the rather common modern practice of rewriting Iranian history by Westerners, which is misleading, dangerous and self-serving. Of course, Iran is not alone in being victimised like this.

Certainly, it was not communism which ultimately galvanised the masses: by the late 1970s communism had already been present for decades, just as it was in every other nation in the world. Indeed, as Iran was never subject to colonial domination, it is a fact that communism had far more latitude and influence than in many colonised nations. But the truly-atheist Tudeh party members (which were truly few in Iran, where polls show less than 5% are atheists today) faced the same problem the WSWS does today: you may educate the Iranian masses all you want on Trotskyism, but that doesn’t mean they will also renounce viewing Imam Ali as a religious and political model.

While their series was informative on the topic they preferred – although it was clearly exaggerated – WSWS readers would have learned much more about Iran if they had instead talked about the enduring political influence of Imam Ali.

Indeed, the refusal to even consider the possibility that Ali, Islam or religion can have a positive and enduring political influence is what dooms Western leftism to political marginalisation in Iran, and elsewhere. It is also creates obvious enmity, discord, sanction & murder.

Imam Ali’s failed Cultural Revolution: the ideological schism between Shia and Sunnis

It is impossible to understand Iran without at least passing familiarity with Ali and with his son Hossain.

In short: Imam Ali, the very first male Muslim, Mohammad’s son-in-law, the 4th Caliph to Sunnis and the 1st to Shia –in the historical context of a perceived slackening in Islam’s revolutionary, political and moral integrity – cemented the ideological Sunni-Shia schism by trying to implement a Cultural Revolution after the initial political Revolution of Islam.

(The schism was officially created decades before: Mohammad repeatedly & openly declared Ali to be his successor at the event of Ghadir Khumm, but this decision was surprisingly reversed on the very day of the Prophet’s death at the Saqifah. This decision installed tribal dominance instead of the will and house of Mohammad, and Ali was not able to resist this decision. Ghadir Khumm is why Shia consider Ali to be the first Caliph, and is truly the root of the split, but Ali’s future actions – described here – would considerably exacerbate it.)

Perhaps all peoples of all times have reinterpreted religion to better understand and to improve the times in which they have lived?

It’s certain that many reinterpret religion to make their times more reactionary: drive through the United States and you will hear on radio station after radio station the combination of Christian fundamentalism and anti-government / pro-capitalist ideology. This is no exaggeration – for them the “beast” of the Bible is actually a symbol for the government, which is inherently evil. It obviously fits perfectly with the neoliberal view. There is also plenty of airspace reserved for “prosperity gospel”, where faith in God is only needed to make you rich. These are obviously not distortions of a failed Christian creed, but of a failed capitalist-imperialist one.

Instead of delusionally reinterpreting Jesus as a way to make money, the application and promotion of leftist perspectives on Ali and Hossain provided more inspiration for the common masses than the Tudeh Party ever did or possibly ever could.

Leftists fail to see that Prophet Mohammad was a political revolutionary

Don’t worry: This section will not be long, nor will it involve quoting the Koran.

I could do that, but many leftists have closed ears, and “God confounds whom He will” (couldn’t resist that one short, oft-repeated quote!).

What this section will recap is the political humanitarian revolution which Prophet Mohammad created. These basic historical, sociological and political aspects of Islam are facts which cannot be denied, and should be of intellectual interest to atheists at the very least.

As I have said often before: Shariati was just one of many, many similar Iranian political thinkers who was / are intensely Muslim and also politically leftist. His work is marked by superb political insights combined with an intensely urgent and open concern for morality.

For an example of his political insights, Shariati noted that the social origins of Jesus and Mohammad – the two Abrahamic prophets of whom we have definitive historical proof – were not the aristocratic ones of Buddha, Confucius, Lao Tzu, Zoroaster, Aristotle, Plato, etc. Indeed, all the founders of schools of pre-Enlightenment thought in Europe, China, Iran and India fundamentally supported their aristocratic, elitist, hyper-conservative political establishments. However, the primary Abrahamic messengers (including Moses, who was born to an enslaved people and then orphaned) were drawn from the People and openly opposed the existing power structure.

This helps explain why the main Abrahamic prophets were explicitly sent to free people not just spiritually and morally but politically as well. Unlike Buddhism, Hinduism, Confucianism or Taoism, “Abrahamism” has always been decidedly political and decidedly against the establishment: Abraham against the ruling polytheists and his father the idol-maker; Moses against Pharaoh; Jesus son of Mary against a slave-owning, imperial Rome which lacked political compassion; Mohammad against the oppression inherently imposed by polytheism (the humorous and sad delusion that God or gods are actually working against you), the meagre cynicism of materialism (scientific, not material), aristocratic privileges, social castes and tribal divisions.

Indeed the Western-created “Sunni-Shia divide” could only be created by non-Muslims because Mohammad ENDED tribalism, sectarianism and nationalism ,and every Muslim is aware of this. This is easily proven: Watch any gathering of Muslims and you see people of all hues and ethnicities – it is beautiful, politically, and the direct result of the humanitarian revolution espoused by Islam. This is absent among the insular “chosen” Jews, and far less present among Christians; indeed, the presence of multiple races in Christianity is largely due to their legacy of forced conversion, a practice barred in Islam.

All of this helps show why Islam is the undoubted political updating of Abrahamic thought. Mohammad had a mission of unification because he repeatedly confirmed the previous Scriptures of Judaism and Christianity (the Torah (Old Testament) and New Testament), and because he also created a unification of time and space by pointedly declaring Islam to NOT be a “new” religion – it is simply a continuation of the one true religion of monotheism.

This idea (tawhidis the indispensable base of Islam: it is the oneness of God, which implies the oneness of all things (from atoms to people to galaxies, as everything is under the direction of a limitless, all-knowing, all-seeing God). This is a fundamentally unitarian concept, accommodates both Western and Eastern concepts, and is also fully in accordance with the last great confirmed scientific theory, the Theory of Relativity.

A fun scientific sidebar!

The Theory of Relatively is far from being just the equation E = mc2 – that’s just the part to say to appear smart. Its theoretical importance is this: when observing the universe no one place is any better or different than another – the laws of nature are universal no matter where or by whom they are described, i.e. there is this egalitarian tawhid on a galactic level.

When scientists inevitably find a “theory of everything”, that too will logically confirm tawhid.

There is one scientific and cosmological debate left which, I must concede, still threatens the victory of tawhid and which could prove the polytheists correct: What is the true nature of the universe’s continual expansion?

If expansion never stops, that implies an eventual thinning out of matter, and thus cooling, and thus death – in theological terms, the Day of Judgement. But what if there is never a day when the universe stops expanding but – instead of thinning out – a day when it actually contracts upon itself? And if that occurs, does it then expand again?

The latter is posited by Hinduism, which believes that the universe has an infinite number of deaths and rebirths; Big Bang, contraction and reversal, then back to the same Big Bang; have all been here before, and we will all be here again. Does time run backwards during a contraction?

This is all scientifically plausible because it has not yet been disproven.

The key appears to lay in solving the mysteries of black holes, if that possible.

Another key lays in the possibility of being able to discover the nature of matter by finding the truly “smallest particle” – we may just keep subdividing forever: molecules into atoms into quarks into…. If we subdivide forever, that seems to support tawhid, because God is limitless. If we reach an end, that seems to support Hindu cosmology.

So for all the opprobrium Muslims and monotheists heap on Hinduism for their idolatry (known as shirk), we still cannot scientifically reject their cosmology. For now, the answer is a question of faith.

I think religious honesty requires us to be open and honest about the limitations of our scientific knowledge – the Koran repeatedly states that one who makes up lies about God is among the most reprehensible of sinners. Indeed, a mind that demands total certainty and cannot tolerate doubt is a fanatical one. I also think every religious person agrees that atheists are far more fanatical in their alleged cosmological certainties than either monotheists or polytheists.

We may never find out, but I have faith in the galactic applicability of tawhid. Fortunately, the Koran forbids forcing a Hindu into accepting tawhid. Nor can you force a Muslim to become a Hindu because Hinduism – it is often said – is not a religion but a culture: there is no process to “convert” to Hinduism – one can only live it. So…Muslims have no problem allowing Hindus to remain peacefully confounded in whatever hundred billion-year cycle they are currently in, and the same goes for Hindus regarding Muslims who refuse to practice Hindusim.

I do not seek to upset the peace of the Hindus, because solving the most difficult astronomical and cosmological questions are far beyond the ken of a daily hack journalist like myself. And maybe there is tawhid in Hinduism which I am perhaps missing?

What this sidebar makes clear is: capitalist-imperialist Western societies have been totally unable to incorporate 20th-century scientific advances into their cultural philosophies. Their People are encouraged in identity politics (where one viewpoint is superior to another, depending on the situation), supporting foreign wars and in exacerbating economic inequalities, all of which contradict the social corollaries of modern science.

They remain quite stuck in their unmodern bourgeois conceptions of humanity, society & science, and this should be expected: they have rejected socialism, which was directly inspired by such modern scientific advances, and which has always sought to reflect it.

Back to something far easier to explain: Iranian Islamic Socialism.

This inviolable unity of all things proclaimed by Mohammad necessary implies a call for socio-political-economic-cultural unity. To say that it does not is to take us back to, “It is surprising! For what purpose then….”

Shariati’s genius was to take Islamic concepts like tawhid and make correlates with them in Marxist socio-economic thought. He did this over and over, and this is why he was so wildly popular and why Iran was so successfully inspired to create a truly modern revolution in 1979. This is also why all of the politics and structures I have described in this 11-part series do not have historical parallels; are decidedly not capitalist; nor are they a return to the 7th century – what has been created in Iran since 1979 is entirely unique (revolutionary).

And I’d say he was right: Tawhid clearly is more politically revolutionary than the insufficient “chosen people” unity of the Jews. Even China’s I Ching explicitly warns of this, in Chapter 13 “Seeking Harmony” – “Seeking harmony within a clan, it is selfish and stingy”.

It is also more progressively uniting than the Holy Trinity of Christianity, which Islam explicitly rejects: God is not three – He is one, and one is all.

In the Abrahamic religion Islam is obviously the most concerned with this idea of egalitarian unity. Indeed, Prophet Mohammad “cornered the market on unity” for all-time and for every time: In Islam (as I alluded to earlier by saying that Islam unified time and space), anyone who has ever believed or will ever believe in monotheism is essentially a Muslim. This insistence also makes it an undeniable reality that there can never be another monotheistic religion in the Abrahamic line – Islam has effectively co-opted all monotheism.

Therefore, the next Abrahamic prophet can only appear on the Day of Judgment… because what else could possibly be offered more than an Islam which offers everything there always has, is, and will be offered regarding monotheistic belief? This is why the Koran begins with praise after praise for monotheistic Jews & Christians as well as plea after plea for Jews & Christians to join this intellectual, social and cultural updating of Abrahamism provided by its latest prophet.

Because another monotheistic prophet is thus a logical impossibility, Muslims believe a “Hidden Imam” (or Mahdi) walks the earth until the Day of Judgment, when he will walk hand-in-hand with Jesus to defeat the false messiah (or Antichrist to Christians) and establish peace and justice on earth This doctrine is not essential in Sunni, but popular, while for Shia it is an essential doctrine.

Many have falsely claimed to be the Mahdi over the centuries, including the fore-runner of the Bahai – that claim was obviously false, because peace and justice clearly do not reign globally. That is why the Bahai are not tolerated in Iran (and this fact predates 1979, of course): there is a rather enormous, Islam-jeopardizing claim which is being made and not fulfilled.

But the galactic nature of tawhid and the realisation that Islam owns all monotheism aside, what needs to be appreciated by non-Muslims is how Mohammad overturned the political order and broke with aristocratic and sectarian values. Just as bus drivers became bosses in 1979 Iran, so in the time of Mohammad slaves with noble natures became higher than aristocrats. From Shariati:

“This is why the Prophet of Islam marked the turning point for slaves who, throughout history, were certain that their fate was slavery…they believed that they existed solely to experience suffering, to carry heavy loads, and to go hungry so that others might receive pleasure. They were born and created for this.

This deprived class, who were convinced that the gods or God were their enemy…. The Prophet of Islam had been appointed in order to complete the movement which had existed throughout history against deception, falsehood, polytheism, creation of discord, hypocrisy, aristocracy and class differences which were all made an object of the spiritual struggle; and by announcing that all of humanity is of one race, one source, one nature and one God, to declare equality for all, with philosophical explanation, and by fighting an economically powerful regime to maintain social equity.”

Clearly, the lenses, ideas and language of Marxism, socialism, class struggle, democratic equality and economic equality are present and have been combined with Islam in 20th century Revolutionary Shi’ism. Combine this by many volumes and you have only Shariati’s output on an issue which captivated Iranian society. “Iranian Islamic Socialism” is not new – it just an apt journalistic catchphrase.

Certainly, the political impact of Jesus son of Mary was only felt after his death, while Prophet Mohammad created political revolutions in land after land, tribe after tribe, ethnicity after ethnicity, and race after race with his creed of total social equality.

Many Christians openly hold Mohammad’s political conquests against him from a moral point of view: this because they clearly fail to realise the revolutionary socio-political demands of Islam, due to their often total ignorance of Islam’s doctrines. Priests in Islam simply are fighters for God and social justice. Islamic preachers are not monks, nor celibate, nor divorced from society, nor unconcerned with society in order to worship God all alone, nor encouraged to live in isolation, nor obsessed with performing rites and rituals, nor plying magic to make it rain (or to do whatever polytheistic / folk shamans do), etc. They are ordered to create social justice.

However, to Shariati and to Shia, this very real socio-political revolutionary aspect of Islam was diminished due to the failure of 2nd and 3rd-generation Islamic revolutionaries to heed Imam Ali’s message.

Imam Ali and his call for Cultural Revolution to preserve the leftist political gains

Because Islam was a political revolution of still unparalleled global consequence, there is much for everyone to study on a historical-political level in the period immediately after Mohammad, who passed in 632. We can view this era from an areligious historical perspective, and it is politically quite enlightening.

This is not the exact same thing as what Shariati and others did – they applied a modern political lens on Islam itself as well as its history. What I am saying here is: Non-Muslims can apply a modern historical lens on the early Islamic era, and we will find the results are almost identical.

We must realise that in 656, when Imam Ali became the 4th Caliph, it was a dire situation for the now-aged first generation of political revolutionaries of Islam.

After all, how many political revolutions haven’t lasted more than a few years before reverting back to the previous & reactionary status quo?

From a purely political perspective, and as Shariati recounts: In 656 it was nearing the end for that first generation of revolutionaries. Ali, the only person ever born in the Kabaa, was 55 years old and had fought in nearly every major battle. He had also retired from politics to work as a farmer – he still mended his own shoes. He had to be pushed into becoming Caliph, and only did so because the revolution was starting to eat its children: His predecessor had been assassinated, factions had appeared, once-liberated areas were rebelling due to poor political governance, while some new converts may have converted for political gain and were thus possible opportunists with questionable grounding in Islam.

It is as if Raul Castro was seeing the growth of parties who want Guantanamo Bay to be legally part of the USA, that the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution were no longer holding meetings, and that state-ownership of the mother industries of the economy were being sold off to Floridians.

Imam Ali assumed the Caliphate and did what he thought was needed – he restored the political revolution of equality initiated by Mohammad.

Ali waged a war against financial corruption and unfair privileges – he was a politically-enlightened (as well as religiously enlightened) revolutionary, after all. He gave the same wages for politicians as he did to slaves, levelled taxes and opposed the reigning nepotism in favor of seniority. There is no doubt that such leftist ideas rarely reign supreme now, either, and that they were just as opposed by the same unenlightened forces back in the 7th century.

Ali’s message of political piety was obviously not appreciated by everyone, least of in largely-Christian Damascus. The governor there was Muawiyah I, the eventual founder of the Umayyad dynasty. After a political marriage to a powerful Christian tribe and many military successes, Muawiyah was powerful enough to not recognise Ali as the 4th Caliph.

The Christian makeup of Damascus was not the problem: the problem was that the anti-reactionary blaze of the Revolution of Islam had so very much to burn. From Shariati, in that typically overstuffed-yet-somehow-not-unnecessary style of Persian carpets and minatures:

“The traditions, rules, etiquette of society, economic and aristocratic systems, thoughts, ideas, tastes, literature, poetry, music, dance, amusements, social relations, ethics and manners of ‘civilized’ Rome and Iran, the social class system and aristocratic regime, the political system of the Caesars and Kings, the type and form of monastic and clerical traditions, the properties which are hierarchical and bureaucratic, the official and classical system of rule, and finally, the progressive (meaning less austere) Iranian and Roman civilizations certainly had an influence upon the simple Islamic communities.

The wealth, power, position and countless ‘spoils’ which had been earned in the Muslim victories make people grow fat and it is because of this that they are no longer listening to Ali’s advice, his goal and his sufferings. The majority of the people are quite happy with the situation. They are no longer fond of such problems. They show no sensitivity whatsoever to them. These people have now changed into being the servants of wealth and power.”

Shariati has clearly recounted a lessening of political fervour which can be seen in seemingly all political revolutions.

Also for Shariati, Ali is so vital in large part because the power centre in Damascus began to manipulate Islam for its own political conquests, fostering a quietism among the religious authorities.

Comparisons of the post-Mohammad-era political culture with the USSR after Stalin and China in the 1960s show obvious parallels…as they must, because all three were the supremely-modern political revolutions of their respective eras.

After the first generation of revolutionaries passed with Stalin, Khrushchev pursued revisionist policies in the name of individualistic anti-Stalinism; then, when the USSR had pulled itself up to the level of the dominant Western imperialists, they preferred the calm Brezhnev era, which was totally stagnant from a revolutionary perspective; finally, Gorbachev’s era had become so estranged from Russian socialist ideals that he foolishly embraced massive tolerance of counterrevolutionary thought (glasnost), which played a major role in subverting the Russian Revolution. Revolutionaries became “the servants of wealth and power,” instead of the deprived classes.

Following 1949’s victory, after many years of similar revolutionary stagnation and at least seven failed official anti-corruption campaigns, Mao and his fellow first-generation revolutionaries listened to the demands of their youth in the 1960s and empowered them to institute the Cultural Revolution in order to restore revolutionary integrity. Thus when Mao died in 1976 the younger generations had personally witnessed the regeneration of revolutionary ideals, and ones extremely similar to those which Imam Ali was espousing 1,300 years earlier. In 2018, when China is close to returning a socialist nation to the same economic status as the dominant Western imperialists, books such as China is Communist, Dammit by Jeff J. Brown are necessary reading not just in the West but inside China itself – rust never sleeps, after all.

Iran instituted the world’s only other official Cultural Revolution immediately after the 1979 Revolution. Even though it expressly rejected anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist thought, as in China, it came at a very different revolutionary period of revolutionary history. This is a vital nuance, but one which does not overshadow the kinship between the world’s only two official Cultural Revolutions. There was talk of a second one in 2005 with the election of Ahmadinejad, the first Basiji president.

In my 8-part series on China I showed how constant Western pressures (blockade, Vietnam War, Indonesian communist genocide) were key additional reasons for China’s Cultural Revolution – it would thus not be historically surprising if the constant Western pressure on Iran does eventually produce a 2nd Cultural Revolution more exactly similar to the first one in China.

The appetite for and unprecedented success in Cultural Revolution is one of the many, many cultural and political similarities between modern Iran and modern China, as I discussed in part 4 of this series.

Perhaps it is not surprising that the non-Semitic Iranians have been so insistent in their accusation that the Arab early Sunnis turned Islam into an imperialist war machine instead of being content to morally improve their own backyards. But it seems historically verifiable: Instead of the values being determined by the Koran and Islam, the values were being decided by Damascus…unless Ali’s ideas prevailed. Did they?

To Shia: The counter-revolution in Islam in generations after Mohammad

No they did not. Ali’s Cultural Revolution created major opposition from the Byzantine elites in Damascus. Governor Muawiyah openly rebelled, demanding autonomy, refusing diplomacy, and thus sparking the First Fitna (Muslim Civil War).

Muawiyah’s army had become accustomed to war, with regular battles against the Byzantines (or Romans, as they called themselves – North European historians apparently insist on this false distinction). The militarily-innovative Muawiyah had just established Arab naval supremacy over the Byzantine / Eastern Roman Empire in the Battle of the Masts of 654, two years prior to Ali’s assumption of the Caliphate. The death of the Zoroastrian Yazdgerd III, Sassanid Iran’s last ruler, occurred in 651 and thus both East and West presented plenty of war booty for thousands of kilometers.

So, in 656, for Imam Ali to come in with his revolutionary piety instead of worldly gain at a historical time when all roads to conquest were wide open….

War between the partisans of Ali (the word “Shia” means “partisans of Ali”) and Muawiyah ensued and, about to be defeated, Muawiyah famously instructed his soldiers to put Korans on the tip of their lances. Inspiration or blasphemy? The soldiers themselves did not know, either, and the confusion stopped the fighting and saved Muawiyah. Diplomacy resumed, arbitration was unsatisfactory and confusion reigned for several years…which was the obvious goal of Muawiyah.

It was his goal because during this break in the First Fitna the powerful new elites in all directions certainly did not grow to appreciate pious Ali’s views. It’s as if Muawiyah was betting on the continued decreasing of revolutionary fervour and increasing of capitalist-imperialist desires. Ali’s soldiers began to be poached and bought off by Damascus. Infighting and discord increases among Ali’s own partisans. Eventually, Ali could not consolidate his position in Iraq, where Muawiyah’s army began invading.

In 661 Imam Ali is assassinated in in Kufa, Iraq – stabbed in the back while prostrated in prayer.

Ali’s legacy is summed up by Shariati thusly:

“The Prophet is the manifestation of Islamic victory on the foreign front – over outright atheism and polytheism – whereas Ali is the manifestation of Islamic defeat within the ranks, at the hands of hypocrisy.”

Thus we have a major cause of the root of the Iranian obsession with hypocrisy, which is essentially the same thing as “corruption” to the Chinese or “opportunism” to Cubans. Of course, capitalists cannot be called “hypocrites” because capitalism is synonymous with hypocrisy, corruption & opportunism in every sense of the words and their practices & applications.

Equal to Iranian hatred of hypocrisy is “arrogance”, which is used synonymously with “imperialism” in everyday Iranian political discourse: imperialists arrogantly believe that they know better than the conquered locals, after all.

In the same way but with none of the same logic, Americans use “imperialism” and “capitalism” interchangeably, even though they are two very separate (but related) practices. Falsely using these two as synonyms explains why Western media essentially instructs (“read: capitalism”) in the rare case they actually even print the word “imperialism”.

“The political, social and international make-up of Ali was the representative par excellence of a new struggle, a struggle between the leaders and the loyalists of the new set of values, of the new faith, who rose up with new and true slogans of Islam and found themselves confronting the greed and worst elements of the revival of the rule of ignorance…. Ali is the manifestation of an age in which an internecine struggle took place between a loyal faithful and anti-movement elements who donned the masks of faith.”

Ali did not represent “only Iranians” or “only Iraqis” or “only Mohammad’s Banu Hashim clan of the Quraysh tribe” – he represented the idea of moral improvement: that is what true socio-political revolutions must be based on, while forgetting it means the revolution is nearing its end.

This is why Iranian Islamic Socialism has been proven to be not just some petty nationalist, sectarian or racist creed but a true, progressive revolution. The message of Imam Ali is open to all peoples; his political message is open to non-Muslims, if they would only look….which is rather the point of this article.

“Confronting the ‘neo-ignorance’ and ‘neo-aristocracy’, which comes to life within the context of Islam under the cover of truth and the very heart of the justice-seeking Revolution of Islam, Ali is the base of resistance.”

It is not surprising that a “resistance base” – has been chose as the term for the smallest unit of Iran’s Basij – there are 60-80,000 such small bases nationwide, comprising 10-25 million Basiji.

We also see here how Shia view Ali’s opponents as a “neo-aristocracy” which mistakenly installed an era of “neo-ignorance” (“neo” because it is post-Mohammad, but “ignorance” because they opposed the social revolutionary Ali).

Ali resisted the unjust, and this resistance is most certainly the cause of his still-galvanising legacy in 2018. The Tudeh Party, for all their decades of progressive activity, never approached the impact of Ali in Iran- not in politics, nor in culture, nor in morality, nor in anything. Iranian socialists succeeded because they subverted themselves to Ali, and thus won over the masses.

The effects of Ali’s failed ‘Cultural Revolution’ – revolution devolves to empire

Upon Ali’s assassination his son, Hassan, becomes the next caliph, but he is obviously dominated by Muawiyah. Muawiyah is declared Caliph with the promise that upon his death the Caliphate will return to Hassan or, if Hassan has passed, his brother Hossain.

But infamously, upon his death in 680 Muawiyah reneges on this promise and appoints his son Yazid for his successor as Caliph. The Umayyad dynasty is declared.

Thus, not only is Mohammad’s will disregarded, but the house of the Prophet has been deeply marginalized, and the democratic, consultative government of Islam has ended with the re-establishment of monarchy.

Some say that Muawiyah told his son to be gentle with Hossain, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad, but it should be clear that this will not be the case.

The Umayyad dynasty, while it was religiously tolerant – indeed, it was officially secular and Christians held top posts – it was ethnically intolerant, as it was pro-Arab. It was also an imperialist war machine which conquered from Spain to Afghanistan. Its legacy is almost universally considered to be negative among all Islamic historians (except by Syrian nationalists). How could it be otherwise? Given its imperialist nature, it was obviously not revolutionary nor sufficiently Islamic.

(Like Alexander, the Umayyads mistakenly thought they could do anything remotely significant to the continent and perpetual superpower of India – claims of victories there by Greeks or Muslims are woefully & shamefully exaggerated, and serve only to amuse Indians. Unfortunately, the belief of such false claims undermine the amazing achievements of India, and thus have produced a huge Western and Muslim under-appreciation for their singular importance and dominance throughout human history.)

While the actual Sunni-Shia schism undoubtedly started on the day Mohammad died, with the refusal to honor Mohammad’s appointment of Ali as the first Caliph, it might have been averted if Ali’s Cultural Revolution had been implemented.

So…we can say this intellectual schism was a cultural conflict between the Byzantine and Persian cultures in early Islamic society – that would seem to rest upon the belief in some sort of native Persian austerity which lays in opposition to a native Mediterranean belligerence. Or we can say that the Umayyads created a wholly new Islamic culture which preferred tolerance and imperialism (how very modern European) to the socio-political revolutionary Islam of Mohammad. Or we can take a political-ideological view – the Umayyad Dynasty only was able to take power because the Revolution of Islam had weakened in its fervour and integrity.

This weakening was not just by the new Islamic elite like Muawiyah, but with the People themselves – to believe otherwise seems to accept a view that history is controlled by the 1%: why did the 99% not rise up with Ali? Clearly, many preferred Muawiyah’s promises, his larger army, his richer allies, his less pious worldview. Islam was a political revolution and people do tire of revolution, after all – not everyone is a seemingly tireless Lenin or “Mr. Dyanmo” Mehdi Ben Barka of Morocco (assassinated in France in 1965, likely with aid from the Moroccan monarchy).

Of course, while under the reign of the Umayyads many would regret this decision – and these are called “Shia” today.

While they would initially headquarter in Iraq and become culturally rooted in the “Shia crescent” (Lebanon east to Iran), Shia are significantly present in nearly every Asian country from Turkey eastward until Bangladesh & China. Thus, Shi’ism is not just a small regional affair as portrayed in the West; this vast presence helps explain why there never any sort of ideological-fuelled war with Sunnis like beween Protestants and Catholics…until Zionism gained the upper hand, that is.

If the Umayyad reign had been more politically enlightened, then they would have likely superseded Ali, correct? Instead, as time went on, Imam Ali obviously became appreciated for the true & just revolutionary he was. Despite nearly 70 years of rather appalling ritual cursing of Ali – the first male Muslim – in public prayers, as ordered by the Umayyad Islamic authorities, Ali’s message grew and now his picture is all over Iran and elsewhere.

I rather doubt Mao knew the story of Ali, but as he was also an undoubtedly poetic soul I’m sure he would have appreciated it…assuming he had dispensed with the blinding anti-religious hatred of early socialists.

Conclusion:

I hope this historical recounting clearly shows how, for Shia, Ali represents a Cultural Revolution within Islam after the original Revolution of Islam. As I said, my terms and historical parallels may be new, but the ideas were present before I was even born. This will become even more clear in the next part of this series, on Imam Hossain. 20th/21st century revolutionary Shi’ism is largely based around the combination of Prophet Mohammad, Imam Ali & Imam Hossain and the political ideas of modern socialism.

The split between Iran and the rest of the Muslim world is not based on religious doctrine, but on political-economic doctrine. Iran was always fortunate to escape the capitalist-imperialist domination nearly all other Muslim nations have been and are still subjected to.

It is unfortunate that it must be tirelessly repeated to combat the dominant propaganda: The “Sunni-Shia divide” is a concoction of Washington and Tel Aviv designed to further their imperialist capitalism. That is very clear from Netanyahu’s 2016 interview with the US television news program 60 minutes: Simply look at the chilling way he responds to the journalist’s question, “Israel and Saudi Arabia: Are you actually developing an anti-Iran alliance in the Middle East?” It’s clear that he has put plenty of time into thinking about this from the way he tries to persuasively respond: “It doesn’t have to be developed – it’s there anyway.” (here at the 4:30 mark) To me it is clear that he is talking about “developing” the Sunni-Shia split, in defiance of nearly all of its 1400+ years of history.

These two articles should illustrate that the so-called “divide” is nothing compared to the Western European Catholic-Protestant divide but much closer to the Theravada-Mahayana discussion in Buddhism, where things were heated temporarily after the split, but then calmed down into peaceful mutual coexistence. Of course, if the Americans had defeated socialism in Vietnam I’m sure they would have exacerbated this difference and would have manipulated the Vietnamese into waging war on the minority Theravada nations of Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Laos, Burma and Thailand….

Yet Ali does represent a different school of Islamic thought in politics, culture and economics – many would say “the original school”.

Ali poses the question: What is to be done in the face of decreased revolutionary commitment and political counter-revolution? His son Hossain provided the answer: constant self-sacrifice for the benefit of a political-social-moral-cultural-religious goal.

Islam, like communism and Confucianism, views humans as perfectible via correct efforts and beliefs. Thus the martyrdom of Hossain inspires a Permanent Revolution in all Muslims, but especially Shia, and one which is simultaneously personal-moral & social-political.

In my experience, open-minded & religiously-searching Sunnis know, appreciate and are inspired by Hossain and Ali, but more than a few Sunnis seem to have no idea. Of course, how many Christians can truly parse the differences between the apostles of Jesus? Let’s not be harsh – we’re all united here under God (and the concept of tawhid).

However, “martyrdom” is not only about suicide – to believe this obviously extreme idea is to assume so many, many things incorrectly about the Muslim concept of “martyrdom”, and most of which reduce Iranians and Muslims to non-humans.

Clarifying the martyrdom of Hossain, the Western and Muslim views of martrydom, the cultural effects of the promotion of selflessness, and the Iranian governmental policies which have been inspired by this culture, are the subject of the next part in this series.

***********************************

This is the 8th article in an 11-part series which explains the economics, history, religion and culture of Iran’s Revolutionary Shi’ism, which produced modern Iranian Islamic Socialism.

Here is the list of articles slated to be published, and I hope you will find them useful in your leftist struggle!

The WSWS, Irans economy, the Basij & Revolutionary Shiism: an 11-part series

How Iran Got Economically Socialist, and then Islamic Socialist

What privatisation in Iran? or Definitely not THAT privatisation

Parallels between Irans Basij and the Chinese Communist Party

Irans Basij: The reason why land or civil war inside Iran is impossible

A leftist analysis of Irans Basij – likely the first ever in the West

Irans Basij: Restructuring society and/or class warfare

Cultural’ & ‘Permanent Revolution’ in Iranian Revolutionary Shi’ism

‘Martyrdom and Martyrdom’ & martyrdom, and the Basij

‘The Death of Yazdgerd’: The greatest political movie ever explains Iran’s revolution (available with English subtitles for free on Youtube here)

Iran détente after Trump’s JCPOA pull out? We can wait 2 more years, or 6, or…

Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for PressTV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has appeared in various journals, magazines and websites, as well as on radio and television. He can be reached on Facebook.

The Essential Saker II
The Essential Saker II: Civilizational Choices and Geopolitics / The Russian challenge to the hegemony of the AngloZionist Empire
The Essential Saker
The Essential Saker: from the trenches of the emerging multipolar world

لماذا تريد أميركا الحرب؟

أبريل 20, 2018

كتب الدكتور جاك باولز لـ Global Reasearch

ملاحظة: كُتب هذا المقال في 30 نيسان عام 2003 في أعقاب انطلاق الحرب على العراق من قبل المؤرّخ والعالم السياسي جاك باولز. ترتبط هذه المقالة الى حدّ كبير برئاسة جورج دبليو بوش. والسؤال الذي يطرح نفسه في الوقت المناسب: لماذا تسعى إدارة ترامب الى الحرب بما في ذلك الحرب على كوريا الجنوبية، إيران، روسيا والصين؟

كوريا، فييتنام، كمبوديا، العراق، ليبيا، سورية، اليمن… لمَ لا تزال الولايات المتحدة تفتعل الحروب منذ أكثر من نصف قرن…؟ ولمَ يصرّ الأميركيون على دعم أجندة الولايات المتحدة العسكرية؟

إنّ الحرب هي خسارة كبيرة على مستوى الأرواح والموارد، ولهذا السبب يعارض معظم الناس من حيث المبدأ قيام الحروب. ويبدو أنّ الرئيس الأميركي من الناحية الأخرى يعشق الحروب. لكن لماذا؟ سعى العديد من المعلقين لإحالة هذه المسألة الى العوامل النفسية. ورأى البعض أنّ جورج دبليو بوش يعتبر أنّ من واجبه إنهاء المهمة، بسبب بعض الغموض وقلة الوضوح، الذي مورس من قبل والده إبان حرب الخليج ويعتقد آخرون أنّ بوش الإبن توقع حرباً قصيرة من شأنها ان تضمن له ولاية ثانية في البيت الأبيض.

أعتقد أنه علينا البحث في مكان آخر عن تفسير لموقف الرئيس الأميركي. ففي الحقيقة، انّ حرص بوش على الحرب لا علاقة له مطلقاً بوضعه النفسي، بل الكثير من العلاقة مع النظام الاقتصادي الأميركي. وهذا النظام، الذي هو العلامة التجارية الأميركية للرأسمالية يعمل أولاً وقبل كلّ شيء على جعل الأميركيين الأغنياء، أيّ «سلالة المال» لبوش الأكثر ثراءً. ومع ذلك، فبدون حروب ساخنة أو باردة، لم يعُد هذا النظام قادراً على تحقيق النتيجة المتوقعة في شكل أرباح أعلى تعتبرها الولايات المتحدة من حقوقها المشروعة.

تكمن القوة الكبيرة للرأسمالية في ضعفها الكبير، وتحديداً في إنتاجيتها العالية الفعالية. وفي التطوّر التاريخي للنظام الاقتصادي الدولي الذي نسمّيه الرأسمالية، أدّى عدد من العوامل الى زيادات هائلة في الإنتاجية، على سبيل المثال، تصنيع العمليات الإنتاجية التي بدأت في وقت مبكر من القرن الثامن عشر في إنكلترا. وفي بدايات القرن العشرين، قدّم الصناعيون الأميركيون مساهمة حاسمة في تحويل العمل من يدوي الى آليّ باستخدام كافة الوسائل والتقنيات الجديدة مثل خط التجميع. وكان هذا الأخير بمثابة ابتكار قدّمه هنري فورد، وبالتالي أصبحت هذه التقنيات تُعرف مجتمعة باسم «الفوردية». وقد ارتفعت إنتاجية الشركات الأميركية الكبرى بشكل مذهل.

وعلى سبيل المثال، وإبان العشرينات من القرن الماضي، كانت سيارات لا تعدّ ولا تحصى تخرج يومياً من مصانع السيارات في ميشيغان. لكن من هي الجهة التي يُفترض أن تشتري جميع هذه السيارات؟ فغالبية السكان الأميركيين لم يكونوا يمتلكون ما يكفي من المال لمثل هذه المقتنيات الباهظة الثمن. كما غمرت الأسواق الأميركية أنواعاً أخرى من المنتجات، وكانت النتيجة ظهور تنافر عميق ما بين العرض الاقتصادي المتزايد والطلب المتعثر. وهكذا نشأت الأزمة الاقتصادية المعروفة عموماً باسم الكساد العظيم، والتي كانت في الأساس أزمة فائض في الإنتاج. كانت المستودعات تتدفق بسلع غير مباعة، وصرفت المصانع موظفيها وانفجرت البطالة، وتقلصت مع ذلك القدرة الشرائية للشعب الأميركي أكثر فأكثر، مما فاقم من حدّة الأزمة.

لا يمكن أن نتجاهل أنّ الكساد الكبير في أميركا لم ينتهِ إلا مع الحرب العالمية الثانية وبسببها. حتى أولئك المعجبون بأداء الرئيس روزفلت يعترفون بأنّ سياساته الخاصة بالصفقة الجديدة التي حظيت بتغطية إعلامية كبيرة لم تسفر عن أيّ إزعاج يُذكر . ارتفع منسوب الطلب الاقتصادي بشكل مذهل عندما بدأت الحرب في أوروبا، وحتى حين لم تكن الولايات المتحدة نفسها مشاركةً في الحرب أيّ قبل العام 1942، ما سمح للتصنيع الأميركي بالازدهار وإنتاج كميات غير محدودة من معدّات الحرب. وبين عامي 1940 و 1945، أنفقت الولايات المتحدة ما لا يقلّ عن 185 مليار دولار على مثل هذه المعدّات، وبالتالي، فإنّ نصيب الإنفاق العسكري من الناتج القومي الإجمالي ارتفع بين عامي 1939 و 1945 من نسبة ضئيلة 1.5 إلى ما نسبته حوالى 40 . أضف الى ذلك، أنّ الصناعة الأميركية تمكّنت من تزويد البريطانيين وحتى السوفيات بكميات هائلة من المعدّات. وفي الوقت عينه، كانت ألمانيا تنتج للشركات الأميركية مثل فورد وجنرال موتورز و ITT، كميات كبيرة من الدبابات والطائرات وغيرها من المواد القتالية النازية، وحتى بعد بيرل هاربور، لكن لهذه المسألة قصة مختلفة . لكن الكلمة المفتاحية لحلّ مشكلة الكساد الاقتصادي عدم التوازن بين العرض والطلب تكمن في الاستعداد لضخّ الطلب الاقتصادي عن طريق تنفيذ أوامر ضخمة ذات طبيعة عسكرية.

بالنسبة الى الأميركيين العاديين، فإنّ إنفاق واشنطن العسكري لم يؤدِّ الى عمل فعليّ كامل فحسب، بل ايضاً إلى ارتفاع في نسبة الأجور أكثر من أيّ وقت مضى فخلال الحرب العالمية الثانية انتهى انتشار البؤس الذي ساد خلال فترة الكساد الكبير، وحققت غالبية الشعب الأميركي درجة غير مسبوقة من الازدهار. ومع ذلك، فإنّ أكبر المستفيدين الى حدّ بعيد من الازدهار الاقتصادي في زمن الحرب هم رجال الأعمال والشركات في البلد ممن حققوا أرباحاً استثنائية. وبين عامي 1942 و 1945، كتب المؤرّخ ستيوارت دي براندز، أنّ الأرباح الصافية لأكبر ألفي شركة في أميركا وصلت نسبتها الأعلى الى 40 وذلك مقارنةً بالأعوام بين 1936 و 1939. ومثل هذه «الطفرة في الربح» كانت ممكنة، لأنّ الدولة أمرت بصرف مليارات الدولارات على المعدّات العسكرية، وفشلت في فرض ضوابط على الأسعار، وضرائب على الأرباح. استفاد من هذا السخاء عالم الأعمال الأميركي بشكل عام، وعلى وجه الخصوص، تلك النخبة المحدودة نسبياً من «الشركات الكبرى» أو «الشركات الأميركية». وخلال الحرب، فإنّ أقلّ من 60 شركة حصلت على ما مجموعه 75 من مجموع الشركات المربحة. وكشفت حينها الشركات الكبرى مثل فورد، IBM، وغيرها، – أنها «خنازير الحرب»، ويكتب براندز حول هذا القدر الهائل من الإنفاق العسكري للدولة. فشركة IBM على سبيل المثال، تمكنت من رفع نسبة مبيعاتها السنوية بين عامي 1940 و 1945 من 46 الى 140 مليون دولار، والفضل في ذلك يعود إلى الحرب و»خيراتها». استغلّت الشركات الأميركية الكبرى خبراتها «الفوردية» حتى الثمالة بهدف تعزيز الإنتاج، غير أنّ ذلك لم يكن كافياً أيضاً لتلبية احتياجات الدولة الأميركية في زمن الحرب. هناك حاجة ماسة إلى الكثير من المعدّات، ومن أجل إنتاجها، احتاجت أميركا الى مصانع جديدة وإلى تكنولوجيا أكثر كفاءة. وقد خُتمت هذه الأصول الجديدة على أرض الواقع، ولهذا السبب ارتفعت القيمة الإجمالية لجميع مرافق الإنتاج في البلاد بين عامي 1939 و 1945 من 40 الى 66 مليار دولار.

ومع ذلك، لم يكن القطاع الخاص هو الذي قام بجميع هذه الاستثمارات الجديدة فعلى حساب تجاربه غير المرغوبة مع الإفراط في الإنتاج خلال الثلاثينات، وجد رجال الأعمال في أميركا هذه المهمة محفوفة بالمخاطر. لذا، قامت الدولة بهذه المهمة من خلال استثمار 17 مليار دولار في أكثر من 2000 مشروع متعلق بالدفاع، في مقابل رسوم رمزية، سمحت للشركات المملوكة للقطاع الخاص باستئجار هذه المصانع الجديدة من أجل الإنتاج… وكسب المال عن طريق بيع الإنتاج الى الدولة. علاوةً على ذلك، عندما انتهت الحرب وقرّرت واشنطن التخلي عن الاستثمارات، اشترتها الشركات الكبرى في البلاد بنصف القيمة، وأحياناً كثيرة بثلث سعرها الحقيقي.

كيف موّلت أميركا الحرب، وكيف دفعت واشنطن الفواتير الباهظة التي قدّمتها GM، ITTوغيرها من الشركات الأخرى للمعدّات الحربية؟ والجواب: جزئياً عن طريق فرض ضرائب حوالى 45 – لكن بقروض أكبر بكثير حوالى 55 . وبالاستناد إلى هذه المعطيات، فقد ازداد الدين العام بشكل كبير، أيّ من 3 مليار دولار عام 1939 إلى ما لا يقلّ عن 45 مليار دولار عام 1945.

ومن الناحية النظرية، كان يُفترض تخفيض هذا الدين، أو محو ذلك كله، بفرض ضرائب على الضرائب الضخمة، وذلك خلال الحرب الضخمة التي كانت تشنّها الجيوش الأميركية، غير أنّ الحقيقة تختلف كثيراً. وكما سبق وأشرنا، فشلت الدولة الأميركية في فرض ضريبة أرباح للشركات الأميركية المفاجئة، وسمحت للدين العام بالتضخم، ودفعت جميع فواتيرها، والفوائد على القروض بإيراداتها العامة، أيّ عن طريق الدخل الناتج عن الضرائب المباشرة وغير المباشرة. وعلى وجه الخصوص، بسبب قانون الإيرادات المتراجع الذي صدر في تشرين الأول عام 1942، ليُصار إلى دفع هذه الضرائب بشكل متزايد من قبل العمال وغيرهم من الأميركيين ذوي الدخل المنخفض، وليس من قبل الأثرياء والشركات التي كان أصحابها هم المساهمين الرئيسيين و/ أو كبار المديرين. ويلاحظ المؤرخ الأميركي شون دينيس كاشمان: «عبء تمويل الحرب»، كان يتآلف بقوة ويرتفع على أكتاف الأفراد الأكثر فقراً في المجتمع».

ومع ذلك، فإنّ الرأي العام الأميركي، المنشغل بدقّ طبول الحرب، والذي أعمت عيونه بعض التوظيفات ذات الأجور المرتفعة، فشل في قراءة كلّ هذا. ومن الناحية الأخرى، فإنّ الأميركيين المؤثرين في الرأي العام، هم على دراية تامة بالطريقة الرائعة التي ولّدت بها الحرب لهم ولشركاتهم طائل الأموال. وبالمناسبة، فقد موّل الحرب أيضاً عدد من رجال الأعمال، أصحاب البنوك، وشركات التأمين والمستثمرين الكبار الآخرين الذين اقترضت منهم واشنطن الأموال اللازمة لتمويل الحرب. وهكذا استفادت الشركات الأميركية من الحرب بحصولها على حصة الأسد من المصالح المتولّدة من شراء سندات الحرب الشهيرة. ومن الناحية النظرية على الأقلّ فإنّ الأغنياء والأقوياء في أميركا هم الأبطال الكبار لما يُطلق عليه اسم المشروعات الحرّة، وهم يعارضون أيّ شكل من أشكال تدخل الدولة في الاقتصاد. غير أنهم لم يبدوا خلال الحرب أيّ اعتراضات على الطريقة التي تدير بها الدولة الأميركية تمويل الاقتصاد، لأنه، وبدون هذا الانتهاك الضخم على نطاق واسع لقواعد الشركات الحرّة، لم يكن من الممكن لثروتهم الجماعية أن تنتشر كما حصل خلال السنوات الماضية.

خلال الحرب العالمية الثانية، تعلّم أصحاب الثروات وكبار مديري الشركات الكبرى درساً مهماً للغاية: خلال الحرب، هناك أموال يمكن جنيها، الكثير من الأموال. وبعبارة أخرى، يمكن إبطال المهمة الشاقة المتمثلة في تعظيم الأرباح وهو النشاط الرئيسي في الاقتصاد الأميركي الرأسمالي بطريقة أكثر كفاءة من تلك المتبعة خلال الحرب، بدلاً من تحقيق السلام ومع ذلك، فإنّ التعاون الخيريّ من الدولة مطلوب. ومنذ الحرب العالمية الثانية، فإنّ الأغنياء والأقوياء في أميركا استمرّوا واعين جداً لهذه المسألة. كذلك الأمر، بالنسبة لرجلهم السابق في البيت الأبيض، جورج دبليو بوش، وهو سليل «إمبراطورية المال» الذي هبط على البيت الأبيض بواسطة المظلّة، بهدف خدمة وتعزيز مصالح عائلته الثرية وأصدقائه وزملائه في الشركات الأميركية، أصحاب مصالح المال والامتيازات والسلطة.

في ربيع العام 1945، كان من الواضح أنّ الحرب حققت أرباحاً مبهرة وأنها ستنتهي قريباً. فماذا سيحدث حينها؟ ومن بين الاقتصاديين، يوجد العديد من «الكاساندريين» الذين قدّموا سيناريوات بدت مزعجة للغاية للقادة السياسيين والصناعيين الأميركيين. وخلال الحرب، اقتصرت المشتريات على المعدّات العسكرية، وليس شيء آخر، قد أعادت ارتفاع الطلب الاقتصادي، وبالتالي لم يكن ممكناً قط تحقيق التوظيف الكامل لكنها أيضاً أرباحاً غير مسبوقة. ومع عودة السلام، فإنّ شبح التنافر بين العرض والطلب يهدّد بالعودة الى أميركا مرة أخرى، حيث أنّ الأزمة الناجمة قد تكون أكثر حدّة من الأزمة الاقتصادية العظمى إبان «الثلاثينات القذرة»، لأنه وخلال سنوات الحرب زادت قدرة الأمة بشكل كبير كما رأينا. سيتعيّن تسريح العمال على وجه التحديد في الوقت الذي يعود فيه ملايين المحاربين القدامى إلى ديارهم بحثاً عن عمل مدني، وستؤدّي البطالة وتراجع القوة الشرائية الى تفاقم العجز في الطلب. أما من منظور الأغنياء والأقوياء في أميركا، فإنّ شبح البطالة القادم لا يشكل أيّ مشكلة على الإطلاق وما يهمّ هو أنّ العصر الذهبي للأرباح الهائلة سيصل إلى نهايته. من الضروري منع حدوث مثل هذه الكارثة، لكن كيف؟

كانت نفقات الدولة العسكرية تشكل مصدر الأرباح العالية، ومن أجل الإبقاء على تدفق الأرباح، وبسخاء، إلا أنّ هناك حاجة ملحة لأعداء جدد وتهديدات حرب جديدة بعد هزيمة ألمانيا واليابان. وكم كان من حسن حظ الاتحاد السوفياتي، أن يتواجد في تلك المرحلة، في بلد كان شريكاً مهماً في الحرب، لسحب زناد النار بوجه الحلفاء في ستالينغراد وغيرها من المدن، إنما ايضاً شريكاً سمحت له أفكاره الشيوعية وممارساته لتتحوّل بسهولة الى بعبع جديد يقف في وجه الولايات المتحدة الأميركية. ويعترف معظم الموثقين الأميركيين أنّ الاتحاد السوفياتي عام 1945، وهو البلد الذي عانى الكثير خلال الحرب العالمية الثانية، لم يشكل على الإطلاق أيّ تهديد اقتصاي أو عسكري للولايات المتحدة الأميركية ذات النفوذ في هذا المجال. ويعترف هؤلاء ايضاً أنّ موسكو أظهرت حرصاً شديداً على التعاون بشكل وثيق مع واشنطن في فترة ما بعد الحرب العالمية الثانية.

ترجمة ليلى زيدان عبد الخالق

Thursday thoughts: explorations in the Semitic dimension

Why is the world today (2018) the way that it is?

Consider these historical facts:

We have had centuries of revolution in the Western world.  Jews have played critical roles in these revolutions.

It is now 170 years since Marx’s Communist Manifesto was published.  1848 was known as a year of revolutions in Europe.

Modern psychiatry or psychology (psychoanalysis) was founded by several Jews in Europe in the late 1800s (Freud and his cohorts).

We have had 125 years of Zionism.

It has been 120 years since the “forged”, but strikingly prescient, Protocols were circulated.

Large scale emigration of Jews from eastern Europe into the United States begins in the waning years of the 19th century and accelerates greatly in the first 25 years of the 20th century.  This large influx of Jews with alien ideas begins to transform US society beginning in the administration of President Woodrow Wilson (one of the most damaging administrations in US history).

The world has endured a century of murderous, atheistic Bolshevism in various forms throughout the world.  Ethnic Jews foisted this program on to the world.

The Jew (Zionist) orchestrated Balfour Declaration (1917) brings America into the European War (World War One) resulting in a defeat for Germany and the punitive Versailles Treaty.  The seeds for a second world war are sown.

The Institute for Social Research (also known as The Frankfurt School) was started in Weimar Germany in the 1920s.  When Hitler came to power early in 1933, these Jewish social revolutionaries fled to New York and set up shop with the help of US Jews.  We have them to thank or blame for the destructive social engineering known today as the Sexual Revolution of the 1960s.

Powerful Jewish interests in Britain push the British to war with Germany in 1939.  The Jewish Bolsheviks in the Soviet Union have built the world’s largest army in history and await the opportunity to spread their revolution by force of arms.  This they do beginning in September, 1939 by annexing eastern Poland.  Then the USSR attacks Finland in late 1939.  In the spring of 1940, it is the Baltic States’ turn as these 3 small nation states are occupied by the Red Army.  Later in 1940, Stalin seizes part of Romania.  (There are many who believe that Hitler’s invasion in June, 1941 was a preemptive strike to forestall a Bolshevik onslaught against central and western Europe.)  Jews in the Roosevelt Administration opportunistically seize upon FDR’s infatuation with both Stalin and utopian communism and urge FDR to aid those countries at war with Germany, which FDR does through Lend-Lease.  As well, Soviet spies penetrate FDR’s government bureaucracy.  During the war, FDR’s policies and agreements favor the USSR at the cost of all other nations and peoples involved.  The outcome of the war is a victory for the Jewish banking interests in London and New York, and a victory for Jewish communists throughout Europe (with the enslavement of Christian nations in central and eastern Europe).

We have had 70 years of holocaustism, which seeks to inculcate the idea of a perpetual victimhood of the Jews in the minds of goyim (gentiles, non-Jews).  Obviously, when we obsess on alleged Jewish suffering, we are not likely to focus on Jewish villainy, or even suspect that such villainy exists.

Rabid and heretical Christian Zionism spreads widely in American Protestantism in the 1960s and 1970s.  The pro-Israeli lobby in the US is greatly strengthened by the support of millions of these deluded Christian Zionist voters, and this impacts US foreign policy in the Middle East.

Also in the 1960s, feminism is effectively hijacked by 3 Jewesses, Friedan, Abzug, and Steinem (half Jewish) and becomes radical or gender feminism which promotes enmity between the sexes.  Also, at this time, pornography spreads and is accepted in the culture.  Hugh Hefner was not the only Jew promoting and publishing pornography.  The adult film industry is largely run by Jews.

The world’s finances and financial markets are largely controlled by the interlocking Rothschild banking empire.  Financial panics and recessions/depressions can be caused at any time to wipe out middle class savings and make people more dependent upon government “assistance”.

We are being told that nationalism anywhere in the world is “anti-Semitism” by default.  Another lie from the Jews.

The elders in Israel threaten the world with nuclear holocaust via their Samson Option if Israel’s existence is seriously threatened or in jeopardy.  Long before the revelations of Mordechai Vanunu in the mid 1980s, the world knew that Israel possessed atomic weapons.  The Israeli threat of atomic holocaust for the world cannot simply be ignored.

The current world order, or the New World Order in progress, is a Semitic scam and sham.  We are all to be serfs and debt slaves on the global plantation (another collectivist, Talmudic utopia) ruled from Jerusalem.  Christian Zionists, lackeys for the Jews, may patrol the fields with whips in their hands as overseers for the absentee Jewish landlords.

We are all Palestinians now, with a life sentence in this New World Order.

Has not humanity paid a high enough price for the arrogance, deceit and betrayal of these chauvinistic Jews, for their crimes, for Jewish villainy?

conclusions and recommendations

We have lamented before that the Jewish Revolutionary Nature is incompatible with Western, Christian Civilization.  The above noted historical movements and facts demonstrate the truth of this position.  (An in-depth analysis of each of the above movements is obviously beyond the scope of this blog post.  However, the interested reader can do an Internet search for articles and books on all of the above noted historical movements and find the Jewish influence and control behind each.)  The Jews when acting on this revolutionary nature, which seems to be embedded in their genes as it persists from generation to generation, subvert the culture of whatever host society (nation) they live in.  They act to divert and deform the normal, natural development and progress of that culture.  It is a zero sum game that the Jews seek to always win.

You may cry out that not all Jews are social revolutionaries.  You would be quite right, but that does not alter the above facts.  In the Bolshevik Revolution, not every Russian Jew was a communist, but nearly every communist leader and inciter of violent revolution was an ethnic Jew.  The Cheka and NKVD mass killers were disproportionately Jewish.

The current trajectory of world society is for greater loss of freedom and more intrusive governmental control of our lives, and for Cultural Marxism and multiculturalism to continue to divide and demoralize western and Christian peoples.

Western historiography must be reformed by people who are free of bias and are capable of objectivity when investigating and chronicling historical events.  Censorship of facts solely because these offend the Jews or expose their villainy can no longer be tolerated.  We need publishing houses that are not controlled by Jewish ownership.

No more wars should be fought by Christian peoples for these damned Jews and their nefarious schemes!!

No more believing in this Chosen People nonsense to give the Jews a free pass any longer.

Humanity cannot afford the cost of Jewish Supremacism and domination any longer.

copyright 2018 – larrysmusings.com

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