Congress, End America’s Role In Saudi Arabia’s War On Yemen

NOVANEWS

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By Lawrence Wilkerson and Gareth Porter

October 12, 2017 “Information Clearing House” –  The Saudi Arabia-led war in Yemen is a tragedy of epic proportions in which the United States is deeply and directly involved.  The war has caused mass starvation and a cholera epidemic that is worse than any the world has witnessed in the past 50 years, with the latest estimate of Yemeni victims at well over half a million.

This horrific situation is the result of Saudi/UAE bombing of roads, hospitals, bridges, water and sewage facilities, and the main port of Hodeida combined with a Saudi/UAE naval and air blockade that prevents large-scale humanitarian assistance from reaching the Yemeni war victims.

The Saudi/UAE coalition could not execute the war without U.S. direct involvement — specifically the refueling of their planes carrying out the bombing — and the further assistance of providing bombs and targeting intelligence.

Even apart from the need to halt this growing humanitarian disaster, Congress has a Constitutional obligation to deal with U.S. participation in this war. Flatly stated, U.S. participation is illegal.

When President Barack Obama ordered U.S. involvement, the Saudi-led war was not covered by the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) issued by Congress in the wake of 9/11.  The Houthis and the forces of former Yemeni president Saleh against whom the Saudi coalition is engaged are not affiliated with al Qaeda or any other entity associated with the 9/11 terror attacks.  

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That is why a bipartisan group of House members — Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) and Walter Jones (R-N.C.)—have introduced H. Con. Res. 81, giving Congress an opportunity to end U.S. support. The resolution instructs the president to withdraw U.S. military personnel from the war — except the U.S. military elements that are strictly aimed at al-Qaeda elements in Yemen.

Even if House members are indifferent to the fact that Congress did not authorize U.S. support for the war, they should take account of the fact that such support has increased the security threat to all Americans.  The Saudi-led war in Yemen, enabled by U.S. support, has strengthened America’s most dangerous enemies in the Middle East — al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

U.S. intelligence and counter-terrorism officials have regarded AQAP as even more of a foreign terrorist threat to the United States than ISIS.  It mounted efforts to bring down U.S. airlines three times between 2009 and 2012, and nearly succeeded twice.  But the Saudi/UAE war in Yemen has made them the most powerful indigenous armed group in southern Yemen, with more money, arms and territorial control than ever before. The Saudi-led coalition and the forces of the Saudi backed former regime have allied openly with AQAP and even fought alongside them.  As a result of the war AQAP is now poised for the first time to compete for national power In Yemen.

The war is also increasing anti-American sentiment in Yemen.  As Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) has pointed out, Yemenis believe the war is being waged by the U.S., not by the Saudi/UAE coalition, which they view as a U.S. proxy. “(W)e are helping to radicalize the Yemeni population against the United States,” Murphy warns.

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Some Members of Congress refuse to support H. Con. Res. 81 because they accept the official rationale for U.S. involvement in the war created by the Obama administration. They argue that the United States has no choice but to support the Saudi-led war because it is necessary to oppose an expansionist Iran. But it is widely recognized that the Houthis are not Iranian proxies; they pursue their own interests and strategy.  

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Before the war began, in fact, U.S. intelligence learned that Iran had advised the Houthis against seizing power by force in Sanaa in 2014 but the Houthis ignored the advice and had instead responded to encouragement from their erstwhile foe, former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.  

The Obama administration promoted the idea that Iran had been supplying arms to the Houthis by sea for years before the war started.  But that argument was based on old recycled claims by the Yemeni government that were contradicted by the publicly available evidence.  After seizing power in 2014, the Houthis did obtain a bonanza of arms, but it wasn’t from Iran; it was from U.S.-supplied arms held by the Yemeni Army units still loyal to Saleh.

Although some Iranian arms have certainly reached Yemen, a careful assessment by a UN panel of experts on Yemen in January 2017 was unable to confirm “any direct large-scale supply of arms” from Iran to the Houthis.  And whatever Iranian arms that were supplied were not the cause of the Saudi/UAE attack on Yemen; they were a response to the beginning of the Saudi air assault.  

U.S. fealty to Saudi Arabia has worsened the chaos and suffering sweeping across the Middle East. It’s time to break with such destabilizing policies that threaten fundamental U.S. security interests.  By passing H. Con. Res. 81 the House of Representatives can reduce threats to U.S. security, assert the power of Congress to authorize U.S. participation in wars of choice and end the infliction of massive starvation and cholera on the Yemeni population.

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“More U.S. Troops at Our Borders”: Russian TV Says U.S. Violates Peace Treaty

NOVANEWS

Headlining “‘More US troops at our borders’ – Russian Defense Ministry”, Russian Television (whose U.S. broadcasts the U.S. Government is considering to ban) reported, on Friday, October 13th, that “On Thursday, the U.S. announced the presence of a second [U.S.] regiment in the already very tense Baltic region, and Poland, and that’s a move which Moscow claims violates that fundamental peace treaty signed between Russia and NATO.”

This report was referring to the NATO Founding Act, which had been signed in 1997 after Russian President Boris Yeltsin learned that the verbal promise which the agents of America’s President George H.W. Bush had made to Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990 that NATO would not move “one inch to the east”, was soon going to be broken, and that Hungary, Czech Republic, and Poland would be the first former Warsaw Pact nations to be added to NATO. Yeltsin was furious to learn of this, and so there were negotiations; and, this time around, Russia got the West’s signatures upon what was to be the contractual relationship between the by-now clearly expanding NATO, and the post-communist and now lone nation of Russia. The NATO Founding Act promised that:

NATO reiterates that in the current and foreseeable security environment, the Alliance will carry out its collective defence and other missions by ensuring the necessary interoperability, integration, and capability for reinforcement rather than by additional permanent stationing of substantial combat forces. Accordingly, it will have to rely on adequate infrastructure commensurate with the above tasks. In this context, reinforcement may take place, when necessary, in the event of defence against a threat of aggression and missions in support of peace consistent with the United Nations Charter and the OSCE governing principles, as well as for exercises consistent with the adapted CFE Treaty, the provisions of the Vienna Document 1994 and mutually agreed transparency measures. Russia will exercise similar restraint in its conventional force deployments in Europe.

The key phrase there is “permanent stationing,” and, as is common in treaties, it isn’t defined. Russia had wanted it to be defined, but the U.S. refused.

Back on 4 September 2014, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was asked at a press conference, “How would you respond to US President Barack Obama’s statement that the Russia-NATO Founding Act may be amended?” And Lavrov said:

“This document was elaborated by all countries that are members of the Russia-NATO Council, and can only be amended collectively. Unilaterally, it is possible only to withdraw from the act, but this would apply only to the country that makes this decision. Declaring that ‘I, a single country, have decided to amend a collective document signed by 28 nations’ is not entirely appropriate, either legally or politically.”

On 9 March 2017, Deutsche Welle bannered “Hopeful for more troops, US scouts basing options in Germany” and reported that,

“Eastern European countries, including Poland, have pushed for permanent troops in their territory, but Western allies, including Germany, have resisted, citing the 1997 NATO Founding Act, an agreement with Russia that they argue limits permanent deployments in former Warsaw Pact nations.”

So: the U.S. is doing it regardless of what the leadership of Germany or any other NATO-member-nation want. The U.S. had been behind the East European regimes that want to go to war against Russia, and it’s providing them the men and materiel in order to lead them in that invasion. Russia is in no position to be able to respond in-kind against the United States, because not only does Russia no longer control the nations that are on and near its own borders, but it doesn’t have, and never did have, control over any of the nations that are on or near America’s borders, except for tiny Cuba, back when both Cuba and the U.S.S.R. were communist. The current U.S.-NATO buildup along and near Russia’s borders would be more similar to a Russian buildup along America’s borders with Canada and Mexico, which Russia wouldn’t be able to do, even if Russia’s Government wanted to.

The American news-site Newsweek (formerly a major glossy magazine but now only online) headlined on October 12th, “U.S. Military Sends Troops to Russian Border, Officials Say They Want ‘Peace, Not War’ With Russia”, and noted that though Russia said the NATO Founding Act prohibited this deployment, “Since Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula amid political unrest in neighboring Ukraine in 2014, however, NATO has significantly expanded its military presence near Russia, especially among the three Baltic states — Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania — and Poland. These four nations were designated by the U.S. last year to host NATO battle groups, but the multinational coalition has expanded its forces beyond these countries, drawing further Russian fury.” In other words: the U.S. designated these countries, on and near the Russian border, to precipitate the final war, which the U.S. intends to finish. And the U.S. then approved even more countries, for the task.                                                         

Back on 13 June 2015, the New York Times had headlined “U.S. Is Poised to Put Heavy Weaponry in Eastern Europe” and reported:

In a significant move to deter possible Russian aggression in Europe, the Pentagon is poised to store battle tanks, infantry fighting vehicles and other heavy weapons for as many as 5,000 American troops in several Baltic and Eastern European countries, American and allied officials say.

The proposal, if approved, would represent the first time since the end of the Cold War that the United States has stationed heavy military equipment in the newer NATO member nations in Eastern Europe that had once been part of the Soviet sphere of influence. Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the war in eastern Ukraine have caused alarm and prompted new military planning in NATO capitals.

What had actually happened is that starting by no later than 2011, the Obama Administration was planning a coup to overthrow the democratically elected Ukrainian President who had been elected in 2010, and the resulting coup — which was carried out in 2014 by Ukraine’s two racist-fascist or ideologically nazi political Parties, the Right Sector, and the Svoboda Party (the latter of which Party was renamed from its original “Social Nationalist Party of Ukraine” name, at the demand of the CIA) — was very violent and bloody, and terrified the residents in the Ukrainian regions that had voted over 75% for the elected President (whom Ukraine’s nazis had just overthrown), especially Crimea and Donbass, so these supporters of the elected President (these people being Russian-speakers) clamored for Russian protection, and Russia provided it. (Here is what Russia was protecting them against in Crimea; and, here is what Russia was protecting them against in Donbass.) By no later than two days after the coup was over, the top officials of the EU knew that it had been a coup and was not a ‘democratic revolution’ such as was being publicly reported. They kept silent about it, and the regimes in the former Warsaw Pact nations have prevented their publics from knowing that Ukraine had suffered a nazi-executed and U.S.-financed coup; and, so, the people in those Eastern European countries think that the imperialistic nation is Russia (like the former Soviet regime was), and not the U.S. (which in recent decades was taken over by fascists, America’s oligarchs).

And, so, since the U.S. Government is gearing up for war with Russia, Russia is preparing to defend itself — against the U.S., and against at least the nations that are bordering or close to Russia (maybe including Ukraine itself), which are providing the military bases and allowing the missiles and other weapons to be installed there (in the participating countries) for the invasion. If and when the invasion happens, it will be completed within less than an hour, the idea being to destroy Russia’s retaliatory weapons by a blitz-attack before they can be fired and before their warheads can reach their destinations, for which reasons Lockheed Martin’s ABM (or BMD) system (called “Aegis Ashore”) is being deployed around Russia’s borders: to nullify all retaliatory capability (as if that were even possible to do).

Anyway, regardless of whether Russia violated the NATO Founding Act by its having accepted the 90%+ plebiscite results in Crimea on 16 March 2014 favoring to become again a part of Russia (as they had been until the Soviet dictator transferred them to Ukraine in 1954), there can be no question that, under U.S. President Obama, and now continuing under U.S. President Trump, the NATO Founding Act has itself been nullified, and there is no longer exists what had been the only peace treaty that the U.S. ever signed with Russia. We’re now in not the Cold War, which was accepted on both sides as being a balance of terror in order to maintain the peace (Mutually Assured Destruction or “MAD”); we’re in the situation where the U.S. Government believes instead in “Nuclear Primacy”, or America conquering Russia. If that weren’t the case, then America wouldn’t have been doing what it has been doing since 2011.

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The US-Turkish “Visa War” Is a Hybrid War Harbinger

The US-Turkish “visa war” began when Ankara arrested a US consulate employee on terror charges over his suspected connections with the Gulenists, which served as the pretext for the US to do what it had apparently been considering for some time, and that’s effectively block Turks from visiting the US by de-facto including them for the indefinite future on Trump’s “travel ban”. Turkey, keen on retaining its dignity, followed suit with a reciprocal measure for Americans, and the entire episode might serve as a prelude to the official, albeit long-expected, worsening of relations and maybe even potential sanctions.

The US is being careful to not make its moves appear “unprovoked”, hence why it sought to disguise its latest actions as being a “response” to something that Turkey did, because it doesn’t want to push Turkey any closer to the Multipolar World Order than it already has ever since the failed pro-American coup attempt last year saw Erdogan dramatically improve his ties with Russia, Iran, and even the SCO in response. That being said, what’s really happening here is that the US is punishing Turkey for precisely just that, as well as more recently for Erdogan’s remark the other day that “the West’s shadow” is behind all terrorist groups in the world, including the Gulenists, the PKK, and even Daesh.

Furthermore, the US thinks that it is unacceptable that Turkey, which is nominally a NATO member, decided to buy Russia’s S400 state-of-the-art anti-air missile system and is even militarily cooperating with Moscow in an anti-terrorist capacity in Syria, especially in the latest Idlib Operation to implement the “de-escalation zone” that was recently agreed to at the last Astana meeting. Another thing which has contributed to the US’ animosity against Turkey is the country’s vastly improved military relationship with Iran, particularly over the Kurdish issue in recent weeks but with the original breakthrough being made through the Moscow Declaration at the end of last year.

The most immediate implication of the American-Turkish “visa war” is that it will worsen the perception that each country’s people have of the other. Turks will see that this confirms what Erdogan has implied for over a year about how the US is the enemy of the Turkish people, while Americans will be manipulated via decontextualized Mainstream Media reporting into thinking that Erdogan is a rogue anti-American dictator whose country is in urgent need of a “democratic regime change”. Both of these interlinked outcomes will probably contribute to the forecasted deterioration of official relations which might take a multidimensional form in creating serious economic, political, and possibly even military fallout, the latter of which could see the US more openly commit to the Kurds and Gulenists.

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Is Trump’s “Friend” Kissinger Steering Him from Calm to Storm?

NOVANEWS

Henry Kissinger, seemingly returned from oblivion, has been in the ear of “old friend” Trump since mid-primary season, just after Trump declared himself open to negotiation with North Korea. Since that moment, Trump’s stance and rhetoric have veered inexorably toward war.

President Donald Trump met with top defense officials Tuesday morning — including Secretary of Defense James Mattis and the Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair General Joseph Dunford — in the White House Situation Room, to discuss potential options for responding to any North Korean “aggression” as well as how to prevent North Korea from threatening the United States with nuclear weapons.

The meeting, which was later confirmed by the State Department and a White House press release, came a day after Mattis instructed the U.S. Army to stand ready if North Korea diplomacy fails, and less than a week after Trump’s cryptic “calm before the storm” comments about a previous meeting with top military commanders. Some have noted that the decision to have the meeting in the Situation Room, sometimes called the War Room, was significant, as it is often used to hold secure meetings regarding disasters, military conflicts, and other major crises both domestic and global.

While most reporting gave some context to Trump’s most recent meeting with top defense officials on tensions with Pyongyang, hardly any mentioned that the meeting had been immediately preceded by another. This meeting, also on the topic of North Korea, was held between the president and former Secretary of State and unindicted war criminal Henry Kissinger.

In his post-meeting remarks, Trump praised Kissinger’s ‘immense talent.’

“Henry Kissinger has been a friend of mine,” he added. “I’ve liked him. I’ve respected him. But we’ve been friends for a long time, long before my emergence into the world of politics, which has not been too long.”

Kissinger is also a long-time advisor and confidante of Trump’s former rival for the presidency, Hillary Clinton.

Tuesday’s meeting was not the first occasion Trump has met with Kissinger since becoming a fixture in American politics. The pair’s first meeting after Trump’s rise to political prominence took place in May of 2016.  That meeting occurred a day after then-candidate Trump said he would open dialogue with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un if elected President. Since that initial meeting, Kissinger and Trump met last November and have already met twice this year.

After their November meeting, Kissinger remarked that Trump would likely not be keeping all his campaign promises, as he was undergoing “the transition from being a campaigner to being a national strategist.” This apparently included his promise of opening dialogue with North Korea.

While often characterized by the mainstream press as a leading “statesman” and “diplomat,” Kissinger’s record shows he is anything but. While serving as Richard Nixon’s Secretary of State, Kissinger oversaw a bloody coup in Chile, an illegal bombing campaign in Cambodia, and millions dead in Vietnam.

Despite overseeing such actions, Kissinger ended up being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, in the same year as the Chilean coup, for his role in bringing “peace” to Vietnam and ending the Vietnam war, though he had actually worked to extend it. The choice of Kissinger was so outrageous that several members of the Nobel committee resigned in protest. Kissinger is also credited with transforming U.S. foreign policy into one of perpetual, undeclared war – a policy that continues today and one that Trump has embraced since becoming President.

Given Trump’s bellicose rhetoric and threats towards North Korea – as well as his rejection of diplomacy in resolving the crisis despite both Pyongyang’s and his own State Department’s apparent willingness to attempt it – Kissinger’s timely guidance to the President during “the calm before the storm” should give the American public considerable cause for concern.

Watch | Henry Kissinger on his 2016 meeting with Donald Trump

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Iran’s Foreign Minister Warned that Trump Threats Would Backfire

NOVANEWS
In letter to EU foreign policy chief, revealed by MEE for the first time, Javad Zarif said US behaviour rendering nuclear deal ‘meaningless’
 

Two months into the new Trump administration, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif warned that Washington’s behaviour towards the nuclear deal threatened to “render the entire bargain meaningless,” according to a copy of a letter obtained by Middle East Eye.

“Iran cannot afford to keep implementing the deal unilaterally while a key participant persists in its systematic violation of key provisions of the JCPOA by invoking irrelevant, extraneous and unfounded excuses,” he wrote, referring to the deal, which is formally referred to as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Zarif’s letter, addressed to European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, stands in stark contrast to a celebratory letter sent by Hassan Rouhani to US President Barack Obama after the deal was implemented in early 2016 and also revealed by MEE for the first time.

The two trace the breakdown of ties between the two countries with Trump’s rise to power and show the dangerous fallout of his confrontational approach towards Iran, ratcheted up again today.

Iran has been accused of violating if not the actual terms of the deal then the spirit of the agreement, by supporting militant groups in the region and developing long-range missile technology.

However, the general consensus among most observers – and the rest of the countries which participated in the P5+1 nuclear agreement – is that the current Iranian leadership posed the best opportunity for a deal that would keep the country nuclear-free.

The two letters also illustrate, say analysts, just how far the Iranian side may have been willing to go diplomatically and how the US had squandered opportunities.

“The change in tone from Rouhani to Zarif’s letter demonstrates a proven flexibility in Iran’s position that this administration refuses to acknowledge,” said Reza Marashi,research director at the Washington, DC-based National Iranian American Council.

“I always tell people I’m as nice as you let me be and I believe that’s Iran’s policy towards the United States.”

“He clearly has a willing partner in Tehran to test the proposition of resolving problems through sustained diplomacy. Now it’s going to be really hard to get there after nine months of Trump poisoning the well, publicly and privately.”

The letters, which were leaked to MEE in advance of Trump’s speech on Friday, fit the descriptions of correspondence which several analysts said they had heard about, but had never seen in full until now.

Rouhani to Obama

In his letter sent to Obama last year after the implementation of the nuclear deal on 16 January, Rouhani says he is “very pleased” that the agreement is coming to fruition.

The agreement “proved that even the most complex of global issues can be resolved through dialogue, negotiation and constructive engagement,” he writes.

“I believe that the ‘win-win’ approach which governs the JCPOA can serve as a good model for the resolution of other disputes and international and regional crises, especially in the tumultuous Middle East – which is unfortunately slipping deeper into the mire as each day passes.”

He ends the two-page letter thanking Obama and expressing his appreciation “in advance for the appropriate instructions coupled with the timely and necessary actions that you will issue and undertake to ensure its full implementation”.

“Please accept the assurances of my highest consideration,” he wrote.”

Model for future deals?

The most striking feature of Rouhani’s letter, said Mahan Abedin, an Iranian political analyst and director of Dysart Consulting, is just how hopeful he is that the deal will lead to resolving other issues.

“That lends credence to what some of his internal opponents were saying in 2015 and 2016, especially before Trump came to power,” Abedin said.

He noted that they claimed that Rouhani saw the deal as a model for future deals which might see Iran give up its missile technology or support for Hezbollah. “This really does come out in the letter,” he said.

Also worth noting, said Abedin, is Rouhani’s tone.

“It shows he had genuine respect for Obama, and I think it also reflects his confidence in the integrity of the negotiation process,” he said.

“He’s surveyed the whole thing very closely, he had full confidence in it, and he was really pleased with the outcome and sees it as his baby,” Abedin said.

Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, said the letter stands in stark contrast to those sent in recent years by Iran’s Supreme Leader to Obama – which US officials described to him – and others sent by Iranian members of parliament to US senators which he had read.

Those letters “were just a long list of complaints with one or two sentences with a small opening,” Parsi said.

Rouhani’s letter “is nothing like that. There is not complaint. There is no going back into the history. It’s not relitigating the last 50 years … It tells you how far the US and Iran came under Obama to interact with each other in a normal way.”

Zarif to Mogherini

Just 15 months later, Zarif’s letter to Mogherini, dated 28 March 2017, accuses the US of violating the nuclear deal and treating it with open hostility that threatens “to render the entire bargain meaningless, unbalanced and unsustainable”.

The Obama administration’s implementation of the deal may have been “lacklustre,” but two months into the new administration, he writes that it is evident that the US government “has maliciously intended – since the very beginning – to prevent normalisation of trade with Iran and to deprive Iran from the economic dividends clearly envisaged in the JCPOA”.

Further proposed sanctions against Iran and reviews of sanctions already in place, he says, have created “indefinite uncertainty and fear in the global economic community about the future of economic relations with Iran,” which he says are a clear violation of the deal.

“This in fact has significant detrimental consequences,” Zarif says, specifically pointing out the difficulties of non-US firms to operate in his country as a result of US policies following the agreement.

Zarif also raises concerns about “provocative statements” that senior US administration officials – whom he doesn’t name – that threaten the deal by “further diminishing the atmosphere which is indispensable for successful implementation of its sanctions-lifting provisions”.

“These statements not only disrespect the established principles of international law … but also contravene the provisions of the JCPOA,” he writes, citing the agreement’s paragraph 28, which calls on senior officials on all sides to support the implementation “including in their public statements”.

“Iran reserves the right to take necessary measures in response to any action or omission which could in effect jeopardise the balance of ‘the reciprocal commitments’ as enshrined in the JCPOA and adversely affect its ‘balanced’ implementation,” Zarif concludes.

Quick off the mark

The issues raised in the letter are no surprise to those following the nuclear deal closely. What’s new, however, is what it reveals about Iran’s current strategy.

“In public, they are not going as aggressive on [the violations discussed in the letter], and I don’t think it’s because they don’t think they have a case,” Parsi said.

“I suspect that they have decided to play the reasonable party by not making too much noise about Trump’s actual violations in public, but instead let Trump shoot himself in the foot.”

It also, Abedin and Marashi said, shows just how quickly the Iranians started to work around the assumption that Trump was serious about his campaign threats to attempt to end the deal.

“What this letter tells you is that they anticipated this scenario that’s unfolding now and they had made preparations six months before. So Iran will be well-prepared at least diplomatically about what’s about to hit them,” Abedin said.

“The Iranians figured it out faster than the Europeans did,” Marashi said. “I talked to Iranians after Trump’s election. Within a month and a half, two months in, they knew what they were dealing with. Only now are we hearing from the Europeans.”

Marashi points out, he waited three months before privately conveying his concerns.

“That demonstrates a level of restraint predicated on keeping the deal alive,” he said.

But given the political dynamics in Iran – including continued financial restrictions – Zarif no longer had the luxury not to take a tougher stance, Abedin said.

“He’s making it clear that they weren’t happy with the Obama administration either because they were also very slow in easing the sanctions,” he said. “What’s going to happen now – now that Trump is about the decertify? People need to take strong diplomatic positions.”

MEE contacted Zarif and Mogherini’s offices for comment, but neither had responded by the time of publication.

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Who are the War Criminals? Truman’s 1951 “Fire and Fury” against The People of North Korea

NOVANEWS
  

Image: Truman and MacArthur on Wake Island

“Fire and Fury” was not invented by Donald Trump. It is a concept deeply embedded in US military doctrine. It has characterized US military interventions since the end of World War II.

What distinguishes Trump from his predecessors in the White House is his political narrative at the UN General Assembly.

President Truman was a firm advocate of “Fire and Fury” against the people of both North and South Korea.

What most people in America do not know –and which is particularly relevant when assessing the alleged “threats” of the DPRK to World peace– is that North Korea lost thirty percent of its population as a result of  US led bombings in the 1950s. US military sources confirm that 20 percent of North Korea’s population was killed off over a three period of intensive bombings. Every single family in North Korea lost a loved one in the course of the Korean War.

Pyongyang 1953

The criminal bombings of Pyongyang in 1951 ordered by president Truman, were opposed by General Douglas MacArthur who was commander of allied forces in Korea:

“A defiant Douglas MacArthur appeared before Congress and spoke of human suffering so horrifying that his parting glimpse of it caused him to vomit.

“I have never seen such devastation,” the general told members of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees. At that time, in May 1951, the Korean War was less than a year old. Casualties, he estimated, were already north of 1 million.

“I have seen, I guess, as much blood and disaster as any living man,” he added, “and it just curdled my stomach.”  (quoted by the Washington Post, August 10, 2017)

The DPRK’s Foreign Minister’s Cable to the United Nations Security Council confirms the nature of the atrocities committed by the US against the people of North Korea under the banner of the United Nations:

See original below.

“ON JANUARY 3 AT 10:30 AM, AN ARMADE OF 82 FLYING FORTRESSES LOOSED THEIR DEATH-DEALING LOAD ON THE CITY OF PYONGYANG. …

HUNDREDS OF TONS OF BOMBS AND INCENDIARY COMPOUND WERE SIMULTANEOUSLY DROPPED THROUGHOUT THE CITY, CAUSING ANNIHILATING FIRES. IN ORDER TO PREVENT THE EXTINCTION OF THESE FIRES, THE TRANS-ATLANTIC BARBARIANS BOMBED THE CITY WITH DELAYED-ACTION HIGH-EXPLOSIVE BOMBS WHICH EXPLODED AT INTERVALS THROUGHOUT FOR A WHOLE DAY, MAKING IT IMPOSSIBLE FOR THE PEOPLE TO COME OUT ONTO THE STREETS. THE ENTIRE CITY HAS NOW BEEN BURNING, ENVELOPED IN FLAMES, FOR TWO DAYS. BY THE SECOND DAY 7,812 CIVILIANS’ HOUSES HAD BEEN BURNT DOWN. THE AMERICANS WERE WELL AWARE THAT THERE WERE NO MILITARY OBJECTIVES LEFT IN PYONGYANG. …

THE NUMBER OF INHABITANTS OF PYONGYANG KILLED BY BOMB SPLINTERS, BURNT ALIVE AND SUFFOCATED BY SMOKE IS INCALCULABLE, SINCE NO COMPUTATION IS POSSIBLE. SOME FIFTY THOUSAND INHABITANTS REMAIN IN THE CITY, WHICH BEFORE THE WAR HAD A POPULATION OF FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND.”

It was all for a good cause, the fight against “evil communism”. The doctrine of fighting communism acted as a powerful ideological instrument during the Cold War era.

Our message to US military servicemen and women at all levels of the military hierarchy.

Reverse the course of History. Abandon the Battle Field, Refuse to Fight!

For complete text of the cable addressed to the UN Security Council click UN Repository

 

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The Korean War and Crimes against Humanity: Forgotten When We Need to Remember

NOVANEWS
The world is so constructed that unless we look at what’s happened in the past, we won’t be able to deal with the present.

First published by GR in May 2017

“ON JANUARY 3 [1951] AT 10:30 AM, AN ARMADE OF 82 FLYING FORTRESSES LOOSED THEIR DEATH-DEALING LOAD ON THE CITY OF PYONGYANG. … 

“THE NUMBER OF INHABITANTS OF PYONGYANG KILLED BY BOMB SPLINTERS, BURNT ALIVE AND SUFFOCATED BY SMOKE IS INCALCULABLE, SINCE NO COMPUTATION IS POSSIBLE. SOME FIFTY THOUSAND INHABITANTS REMAIN IN THE CITY, WHICH BEFORE THE WAR HAD A POPULATION OF FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND.” [UN Repository]

With tension ever mounting in the Korean peninsular, all the higher every year with US bombers conducting annual drills over South Korea within direct strike range of North Korea, it is notable and deeply regrettable the West has lost all sight and memory of the enormous destruction inflicted on the Korean people in the Korean War 1950-53.

How can we ever in the West begin to understand the large scale militarisation of North Korea if, in the US and UK in particular, political assessment and judgement takes no account of Korean history?

North Korea was as a matter of historical fact through the Korean war carpet bombed for three years by US bombers. There was, after the first months of the war, mounting air defences in northern most North Korea bordering China, including Russian MIG fighters but, none-the-less, US B29s bombing was for most of the war free-range over the whole peninsular.

To quote from testament from both sides,

“The US airforce destroyed every town and village in north Korea”. “The destruction was enormous”.

In the  words of Air Force General Curtis LeMay:

“We burned down every town in North Korea …. over a period of three years or so we killed – what – 20 percent of the population”.

And this including the very worst of it large scale use of napalm. To quote Senator John Glenn, then a major in the US air force before becoming an astronaut:

“We did a lot of napalm work dropping fuel tanks loaded with napalm, flying in low, called a Nape Scrape”.

Napalm, jellied petroleum and phosphorus. No-one likes to spell it out but people quite simply burn to death.

In all some 600,000 tons of bombs were dropped on the towns and villages and cities of the country. That is well over a million concussion bombs, along with 40 million gallons of high octane napalm. And to add to this, in the final stages of the war, mass bombing (1,514 sorties) of Sui-ho hydro-electric and irrigation dams (the world’s fourth largest) on the Yalu River then flooding and destroying huge areas of northern farmland and crops.

“Five reservoirs were hit, flooding thousands of acres of farmland, inundating whole towns and laying waste to the essential food source for millions of North Koreans.10 Only emergency assistance from China, the USSR, and other socialist countries prevented widespread famine”. [Asia-Pacific Journal 2009]

In the words of Professor Charles Armstrong, Director of the Centre for Korean Research, Columbia University:

“The physical destruction and loss of life on both sides was almost beyond comprehension, but the North suffered the greater damage, due to American saturation bombing and the scorched-earth policy of the retreating UN forces”.

That then is the horror of the brutal Korean war. Over two million Korean civilians died including many tens of thousands of children. On US pilot testament destruction was “indiscriminate”.

Is it then any wonder North Korea turns out a highly militarised state, deeply loathing the “Yankees”, raining bombs and death and destruction on their towns and villages for three years ?

No-one can deny the one-party state authoritarianism of North Korea but then we surely have to ask how much of this huge militarisation has been created by the horrors of warfare, all the more so large scale bombing impacting on civilian populations. As also not to forget, until the end of WW2, Korea suffered 35 long years of brutal occupation by the Japanese. Over one million forced deportations, suppression of Korean culture and identity, deaths in Japanese labour camps estimated at over half a million.

In all Korea was a long suffering country for many decades, the very worst not forgotten by the Koreans the enormous destructive US bombing ’50-53.

International Perspective – East or West trauma is not forgotten.

The US, and New York in particular, were devastated by the attack on the Trade Centre towers in 2001. Terrible shock traumatic destruction with 2,996 deaths and 6,000 injuries. And that huge and deep trauma living on to this day and for whole lifetimes in those directly affected, all who lived and live in New York, and indeed in the consciousness of the whole of the US, and the world.

But the West forgets and is oblivous or indifferent to the suffering inflicted on the Korean people 1950-53. And that is bombing and destruction and loss of life of many thousands of Trade Centre attacks. Not loss of life from air attacks on armies in combat but bombing of civilian populations in towns and cities to “terrorise” a country into submission. That was, on all the evidence, in the face of huge Chinese troop influx into the peninsular, US military policy.

It is then impossible to see how it could be clearer, for those who will look, the actions of the US and West have played a hugely determinate role in the creation of the deeply alarming militarised state of Korea the West not only condemns but has listed (George W. Bush 2002) as part of an “Axis of Evil”. On this view not a breath of recognition that three years of carpet bombing, following 35 years of repression under Japanese occupation, surely provides an understandable rationale why any country would become formidably militarised. Defence of the country the all-consuming priority.   

For the people of North Korea the mass killing and destruction of civilians a holocaust against their people. For them, United States enormous war crimes and atrocities never brought to any court of justice.

Instead the hugely admired US East Asia commanding general of the time, General Douglas MacArthur, returned home in 1951 to a huge New York ticker-tape heroes welcome. Not condemnation from the US public (as arose in the Vietnam war) but celebration. But then the general US public of that time new very little of the real consequences of the war on the country. For instance that MacArthur and many in higher US military circles advocated dropping atomic bombs on Chinese cities to get the war over and unite Korea.

“His [MacArthur’s) plan was to drop between 30 and 50 atomic bombs-strung across the neck of Manchuria, and spread behind us, from the Sea of Japan to the Yellow Sea – a belt of radioactive cobalt for at least 60 years there would be no invasion of Korea from the North.” [B-29s Over Korea – Wayland Mayo]

History Repeating – self same military mind-sets gathering again.

And now we have history on the brink of repeating yet again. The whole situation enormously high risk and dangerous with Secretary of State Tillerson indicating in his view, as he did in discussion April 12th with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov over Crimea and Syria, “history is not the issue”. What matters, as Tillerson said, is dealing with “current threats”. In a stroke Mr Tillerson excluding all relevance of historical causes and motivations why North Korea is so vehemently anti-American.

Foreign Minister Sergy Lavrov:

“As far as Syria is concerned and Bashar al-Assad, we talked today about the history, and Rex [Tillerson] said that he was a new man and is not interested so much in history; he wants to deal with today’s problems. But the world is so constructed that unless we look at what’s happened in the past, we won’t be able to deal with the present”. [US Dept of State – Lavrov-Tillerson meeting 12th April]

Since then the Secretary of State has made clear, in the UN Security Council 28th April, “the time for strategic patience is over”. And all the more deeply alarming telling the Council there will be “no negotiations” until North Korea “first” takes “concrete steps” to shut down all missile activity and “de-nuclearise”. For Tillerson, and UK Foreign Secretary Johnson, in considerable contrast to the views of China and Russia, the reasons why North Korea has become one of the most militarised states in the world are not relevant. The Korean War with 3 million dead not counted in contemporary political calculus.

And so it is the West makes no effort to understand another nation’s history then history repeats. But then in the US and in the UK the Korean war is known as the Forgotten War. Forgotten for one reason as in burying memory of large scale war crimes against civilian populations. Horror for civilian population, horror for combatant troops. The West in so many ways in denial of a war that is very distant “long ago” but then, for the Koreans, as alive today as terror and fear of the US and West as sixty years ago.

And from the side of the West, to face up to responsibility for the huge numbers of civilian casualties from bombing of Korean towns and cities as US governments would, as at Nuremberg, face the self same charges the West brought against the Nazi regime after WW2: Crimes against Humanity. War crimes against civilian populations.

Understanding the other side – understanding ourselves.

Such Human Rights courts of justice not on any agenda anywhere in the West a very good start to ease tension would be, as is being called for by China and Russia, high level meetings between all major parties. And in this respect, at the heart of the whole current tension, it is of the deepest concern that in the West it is rarely brought to light that the US has repeatedly turned down North Korea offers to end nuclear weapon development.

Image result for nuclear north korea

That will come as a shock to many but negotiation records show that offers have been put forward by North Korea back to the Clinton administration in the 1990s but then rejected by the US as, in return, North Korea asks that the US and South Korea end annual large-scale “warfare exercises” on their borders. The most recent offer 2015:

“North Korea announces offer to suspend nuclear testing …in exchange for the United States and South Korea calling off annual joint-military exercises slated for spring 2015. The United States rejects the offer.” [Arms Control Association]

These offers rejected US military build-up as of May 2017 in warfare exercises includes the newly installed US anti-missile THAAD system, low flying bombers within minutes’ strike range of North Korea, together with an aircraft carrier battle fleet, including who knows how many nuclear strike submarines, in Korean off-shore waters.

North Korea finds all this US “menace”, as both China and Russia have repeatedly emphasised, hugely threatening (as indeed do the Chinese). And one would think, if it was our own country, terrifying. For UK just compare the 1940 blitz with cities across the UK from London to Liverpool ablaze. British people do not forget. And for the US, missiles on Cuba in the early ’60s and that very nearly leading to world nuclear war. But on the North Korean offers to de-nuclearise the US repeatedly refuses quid pro quo de-escalation with parallel negotiations.

On scores for belligerence the US, and others in the West including the UK, could surely not be higher. On four counts : enormous destruction of North Korean civilian population by vastly superior US air forces 1950-53 (albeit bannered under the “UN”) ; repeated US refusal of North Korea’s offers of quid pro quo de-esculation of forces on both sides; US bringing even more over-whelming military force into South Korea and off-shore seas ; US and UK calling for and indeed demanding, through the UN, imposition of more and more powerful sanctions, most crippling closing international access to sources of financial exchange. This then closing off (blockading) routes for trade driving North Korea into deeper isolation and poverty.

Threats mounting on both sides, racking up more and more tension and fear. As in all conflicts so much mirroring, of behaviour, both sides then condemning the other. Defence and survival on one side seen by the other as threat and belligerence. In the case of North Korea desperation leading who knows where.

The enormous tragedy for Korea – for all Korean people.

In all an enormous tragedy for all Koreans. Bitterly and deeply ironically both sides in Korea want to unite, as one Korea. Huge loss of life and huge casualties, three years of war with estimates of over three million dead, both sides fighting to “unite their country”, only to end up summer 1953 exactly where they started on the 38th parallel. Such utter futility. The pity and insanity of war at its most tragic.

As matters stand now, with increasingly intense US and South Korean military exercises each year, in the face of ever increasing North Korean nuclear strike capacity, the latest missile launch 14th May getting closer to a full-fledged long range ICBM strike capability, the whole situation is clearly becoming progressively more precarious year by year. High level careful communication is clearly needed, as repeatedly promoted by the Chinese. Not warships and missiles, from either side, ending up mirroring each other into destruction. With tensions ever mounting, it is then encouraging that newly elected South Korean president , President Moon Jae-in, wants to talk with the North. And it is understood wants to see the THAAD missile system removed.

And for the North Koreans, from the Western view, however hollow we view their society, however much it appears or indeed is a sham, the people clearly have enormous pride. In so many ways (the great buildings in Pyongyang, military parades, and missiles) showing to the world how much they have achieved, and that is achieved from ground zero 1953 total destruction of their country.

And this achievement in huge contest and rivalry, with powerful national jealousies, between North and South. The two sides the great misfortune to end up on the world’s most volatile tectonic plates between communism and capitalism. Both sides showcasing what their “side” has achieved: the South hosts the Olympics and FIFA World Cup, the North parades and launches missiles. This whole complex psychological cauldron is what the West needs to understand and respect.

Respect Fuche – self-reliance – the founding ideology of the country. However badly from the West we view the regime, to the country’s credit they have made huge and heroic and enormous progress providing universal education, health care, and housing, for their population. And that is universal and free health care and education up to university level. No massive student debts for North Korean students.  No sick and uninsured with no medical health care in this country. Their system has huge holes, as we do in the West, but its not all bad, unless we in the West will only see it that way : esse est percipi – thinking makes it so. There is much we might learn, if we negotiate, not wrack up mounting war menace and threats.

SOURCES:

Interviews and Transcripts

Korean War – Part 19 – Use of Napalm … Senator John Glenn – in 1950 a major in US Air Force : “We did a lot of napalm work … dropping fuel tanks loaded with napalm .. we call it a Nape Scrape” “You could strafe them, bomb them, napalm them. Quite a variety of weapons.

Korean War – Part 22 – bombing of North Korea .. the United States Air Force destroyed every town and city in Norht Korea. Kim Un Sun – factory worker – “Lets make bullets of revenge to give to the Americans”.

North Korea Remembers US War Crimes – what the West wants to forget … the view of North Korea : “Brutal atrocity of US Imperial Aggressors”.

Air Force General Curtis LeMay – “… we burned down every town in North Korea …”

Air&Space 2015 – How the Korean war almost went nuclear … Operation Hudson Harbor …

B-29s Over Korea – US Planned to A-Bomb N. Korea: [MaArthur’s] plan was to drop between 30 and 50 atomic bombs-strung across the neck of Manchuria, and spread behind us, from the Sea of Japan to the Yellow Sea- a belt of radioactive cobalt for at least 60 years there would be no invasion of Korea from the North

Attacks on the Sui-ho Dam … the hydroelectric targets were subjected to attacks totalling 1,514 sorties.

Asia-Pacific Journal 2009: Professor Charles Armstrong “Five reservoirs were hit, flooding thousands of acres of farmland, inundating whole towns and laying waste to the essential food source for millions of North Koreans.10 Only emergency assistance from China, the USSR, and other socialist countries prevented widespread famine”.

The Destruction and Reconstruction of North Korea – 2009: Professor Charles Armstrong, “The US Air Force estimated that North Korea’s destruction was proportionately greater than that of Japan in the Second World War, where the US had turned 64 major cities to rubble and used the atomic bomb to destroy two others. American planes dropped 635,000 tons of bombs on Korea — that is, essentially on North Korea –including 32,557 tons of napalm”.
“The DPRK government never forgot the lesson of North Korea’s vulnerability to American air attack,…”

New York Times – Choe Sang-Hun – 2015: North Korea offers US Deal to Halt Nuclear Tests …

Arms Control Association – 2015: North Korea announces offer to suspend nuclear testing …in exchange for the United States and South Korea calling off annual joint-military exercises slated for spring 2015. The United States rejects the offer.

12th April 2017 Tillerson Lavrov Press Conference on Syria – Lavrov emphasises “historical context” – Tillerson dismisses history with emphasis on “current threats”.

US Dept of State – 12th April 2017 Tillerson Lavrov Transcript:  Foreign Ministr Lavrov : “As far as Syria is concerned and Bashar al-Assad, we talked today about the history, and Rex said that he was a new man and is not interested so much in history; he wants to deal with today’s problems. But the world is so constructed that unless we look at what’s happened in the past, we won’t be able to deal with the present”.

28th April 2017 – UN Security Council Meeting on Korea … full meeting.

US Dept of State – 28th April 2017 – Secretry Tillerson Statement to UN Security Council: “The policy of strategic patience is over”. Call for economic and financial isolation of DPRK. North Korea must take concrete steps to end illegal weapons programs before we can even consider talks.

NY Times – Choe Sang-Hun – 2nd May 2017 – US Antimissile System Goes Live in South Korea ….

CGTN – 2nd May 2017 – Us B-1B Lancer bombers fly over South Korea angering DPRK …

Commentary and Analysis

2012 – Washing Post John Tirman : Why do we ignore the civilians killed in American wars? “Estimates of Korean war deaths …. widely believed to have taken 3 million lives, about half of them civilian.”

Global Research 2010 – Professor Michel Chossudovsky: “It is now believed that the population north of the imposed 38th Parallel lost nearly a third its population of 8 – 9 million people during the 37-month long “hot” war, 1950 – 1953.” “US Sources acknowledge 1.55 million civilian deaths in North Korea”.

Wikipedia Civilian Casualty Ratio – Korean War: The median total estimated Korean civilian deaths in the Korean War is 2,730,000.

March 2015 – Washington Post fomer reporter Blaine Harden: The US war crime North Korea won’t forget – “War reporters rarely mentioned civilian casualties from U.S. carpet-bombing. It is perhaps the most forgotten part of a forgotten war”. “People in the North feel backed into a corner and threatened”.

Boundless – World History – Korea under Japanese Rule: The 1910-1945 Japanese occupation of Korea was marked by the suppression of Korean culture and heritage, mass exploitation of the Korean labor, and violent repressions against the Korean independence movement.

Vox – Max Fisher August 2015 – Americans have forgotten what we did to North Korea:  You can glimpse both the humanitarian and political consequences in an alarmed diplomatic cable that North Korea’s foreign minister sent to the United Nations .. in January 1951 : THE NUMBER OF INHABITANTS OF PYONGYANG KILLED BY BOMB SPLINTERS, BURNT ALIVE AND SUFFOCATED BY SMOKE IS INCALCULABLE, SINCE NO COMPUTATION IS POSSIBLE. SOME FIFTY THOUSAND INHABITANTS REMAIN IN THE CITY, WHICH BEFORE THE WAR HAD A POPULATION OF FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND.

UN DAG Repostory – source of 1951 diplomatic cableEnglish copy of cable.

Democracy Now – April 2017 – Noam Chomsky on North Korea ….”China and North Korea proposed to freeze the North Korean missile and nuclear weapons systems. And the U.S. instantly rejected it … ”

Posted in USA, North Korea0 Comments

U.S. Holds the World Record of Killings of Innocent Civilians

NOVANEWS
Interview with Prof. John McMurtry

First published by Global Research in July 2014

A world-renowned Canadian philosopher argues that the United States holds the world record of illegal killings of unarmed civilians and extrajudicial detention and torturing of prisoners who are detained without trial.

Prof. John McMurtry says that the U.S. government is a gigantic mass-murdering machine which earns profit through waging wars, and is never held accountable over its unspeakable war crimes and crimes against humanity. He also believes that the U.S. has become a police state, which treats its citizens in the most derogatory manner.

 “I have travelled alone with only backpack possession through the world, and have found no state in which police forces are more habituated to violent bullying, more likely to draw a gun, more discriminatory against the dispossessed, and more arbitrarily vicious in normal behavior,” said McMurtry. “The US now leads the globe in an underlying civil war of the rich against the poor.”

 “The US can … detain, kidnap and imprison without trial or indictment any US citizen or other citizen anywhere by designating them enemies to the US,” Prof. John McMurtry noted in an exclusive interview with Fars News Agency.

 According to the Canadian intellectual, the United States statesmen have long supported dictatorial and tyrannical regimes and even funded and armed the Nazi regime of Adolf Hitler in the period between 1939 and 1945.

 John McMurtry is a Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Guelph, Canada. In 2001, Prof. McMurtry was named a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada for his outstanding contributions to the study of humanities and social sciences. His latest major works are his 15-year study, “The Cancer Stage of Capitalism: From Crisis to Cure” and three monumental volumes commissioned by UNESCO for its Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems entitled “Philosophy and World Problems.” McMurtry’s articles and writings regularly appear on different newspapers and online magazines across the world.

 Prof. McMurtry took part in an in-depth interview with FNA and responded to some questions regarding the U.S. project of the War on Terror, its military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan and the September 11, 2001 attacks. The following is the text of the interview.

Q: Prof. McMurtry; it was following the 9/11 attacks that the United States launched its project of War on Terror. The venture has so far cost the lives of thousands of innocent, unarmed civilians across the world, including in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya; however, the civilian cost of the Global War on Terror has been mostly ignored by the mainstream media and the politicians in the West. Why do you think they’ve overlooked the enormous rate of civilian casualties resulting from an endeavor which was purportedly aimed at exporting democracy and liberal values to the world?

A: In the US’s so-called War on Terror, by far the greatest and most systematic terrorization of civilians is in fact perpetrated by the US state itself. Unarmed citizens are murdered across the world as ‘collateral damage’, ‘illegal enemy combatants’ or other license of impunity. The US state conceives itself as above international law along with ally Israel, but this reality is taboo to report and so too all the killing and terrorization of civilians. One can truly say that “the historical record demonstrates the US is provably guilty of continual lawless mass murder of civilians across the world”, but the truth is unthinkable within the ruling ideological regime. Consider for example, the US-led deadly civil wars and coup d’etats in Venezuela and Ukraine as well as Libya and Syria. They mass terrorize and destroy societies into defenseless dependency so that their resources, lands and markets are “free” for transnational corporate exploitation. Yet the meaning is un-decoded. Ignorance is built into the syntax of acceptable thought.

Q: Many immigrants who seek refuge in United States from the four corners of the globe in search of a better and more prosperous life think of America as an absolutely free, democratic and open society with abundant opportunities for economic and social progress. However, you’ve argued, as many scholars did, that the United States is a police state. Would you please elaborate more on that? Do you believe that these immigrants and asylum-seekers are not told the whole truth about the United States or are somehow deceived?

A: Deception allies with ignorance. I define a police state as a society in which there is unlimited state power of armed force freely discharged without citizen right to stop it. While the men at the top always proclaim their devotion to the public good, an endless litany of crimes against human life is permitted by legally terrorist offices, central directives, and bureaucratic channels. Thus in “free and democratic America”, more citizens are caged than any country in the world, and over 80% have perpetrated no violence against [any] person. While the US accuses others of inhuman persecution and despotism, it holds the world records for caging non-violent people, for violent killings of civilians, for spy surveillance of everyone, and for mass murders of innocent people across international borders. Even kicking the tire of a VIP vehicle may be prosecuted as an act of “terrorism”. I have travelled alone with only backpack possession through the world, and have found no state in which police forces are more habituated to violent bullying, more likely to draw a gun, more discriminatory against the dispossessed, and more arbitrarily vicious in normal behavior.  The US now leads the globe in an underlying civil war of the rich against the poor.

Q: What’s your viewpoint on the recent laws and legislations that have stipulated limitations on the civil liberties of the U.S. citizens, including the PATRIOT Act of 2001, which was widely criticized and protested at? It’s seen as a discriminatory measure that violates the privacy of the American citizens and the foreign nationals traveling in the States. Isn’t it so?

A: The repression of civil rights by the US goes far deeper than violation of citizen privacy to which the media confine themselves. The Patriot Act together with other laws like the Military Commissions Act, the Defense Authorization Act, the Homeland Security Act and the Protect America Act, mutating to the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, form a systematic curtailment of civil rights and freedoms. Spying on everyone across borders is the accompanying apparatus of the National Security Agency which has been recently exposed in its totalitarian global snooping and dirty tricks. Department analyst Daniel Ellsberg of the Pentagon Papers summarizes the post-9/11 situation in the US as “a coup … a steady assault on every fundamental of our Constitution for executive government to rule by decree”.  What makes these new laws and licenses tyrannical is their selective suspension of established constitutional rights to habeas corpus, the right of the accused to see evidence against him/her, the right to one’s chosen legal defense, the right to trial without indefinite detention, and other rights of due process of law including to free speech and organization that can be construed as supporting “illegal enemies”. As to who these “illegal enemies” are, this is determined by the US president without legal criterion, proving evidence or verification required. The US can thus detain, kidnap and imprison without trial or indictment any US citizen or other citizen anywhere by designating them enemies to the US. This arbitrary power has most infamously instituted US presidential right to kill individuals and those around them at will by robot killer drones – all crimes against humanity and war crimes under international law, but again taboo to report in the mass media or question in international security meetings themselves.

Q: The U.S. government has traditionally supported the oppressive regimes that are widely considered as dictatorial and tyrannical. Some examples include the successive U.S. governments’ support for the regimes in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and Israel. Isn’t such an approach contrary to the democratic principles which the U.S. Constitution is said to be oriented on?

A: Certainly the US has long supported dictatorial and tyrannical regimes. In fact US corporations and banks led the funding and arming of Hitler and the Nazis even during the 1939-45 War, and official US support of murderous dictatorships afterwards has been normalized since the CIA’s foundation in 1947. In the years since 9/11, US government has covertly directed funding and arming of the most destructive armed forces including jihadists, not only in the nations you mention, but in Syria and before that Libya, Iraq, Somalia, and Afghanistan and many much less known places like Mali. Ukraine has been similarly launched into civil war and escalated oppression by US-led destabilization, covert Special Forces, and local fascists.

Yet the US Constitution itself has no clear resource to prevent such international crimes, the founding US fathers themselves being mainly rich slave owners and leaders of the genocidal Western expansion against first peoples which England had forbidden in 1763. In fact, despite some stirring phrases without binding force, the ultimate concern of the US Constitution is the protection of private property and wealth at the top against the masses and democratic reversal. The ultimately governing value is profitable and unfettered private commerce, the “commerce clause” being the only way found to enforce the civil rights of Blacks. The opening slogans of “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness” seem inspiring except that happiness cannot be pursued, life needs do not ever enter into consideration, and liberty without the means to exercise it is nonsense.

Bear in mind that Supreme Court decisions have further granted the constitutional freedom of private money hoards to control politicians, public speech and elections themselves. Transnational corporations which are the global vehicles of the world’s ruling money sequences have at the same time multiplying powers with no obligations, while other societies’ rights have been effectively erased by international trade treaties which recognize only corporate rights and strip societies of their economic sovereignty and public resources. Corporate rights to dominate public speech and elections have been twisted out of even the Constitution’s Fifth Amendment protecting the civil rights of ex-slaves. In short, a near total expropriation of rights by Big Money has shown how anti-democratic the US Constitution has been made. I think that only the rule of life-protective law with the force of international law can regulate this global money-power dictatorship back into coherence with life support requirements now violated at every level, with or without a revolutionary uprising.

Q: Over the course of 20th century, the United States has been involved in several covert foreign regime change actions, and as the Foreign Policy magazine notes, it has toppled seven governments in the last 100 years through masterminding and engineering coups across the world, including the 1953 coup d’etat against the popular government of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh or the 1973 coup in Chile that brought down the government of President Salvador Allende. Is such sponsorship of coups and regime change actions the characteristic feature of a democratic, peace-loving government?

A: There has been almost no coup or government overthrow since 1945 not led by the US. The examples you give of Mosaddegh and Allende are sea-changes of history in which elected, socially responsible and peaceful governments led by men of the very highest quality have been criminally usurped. This perpetual and increasing destabilization of other states and societies along with other gravely degenerate trends are systematically tracked in my 15-year study The Cancer Stage of Capitalism/ from crisis to cure. In the US itself, the three powers of supreme legislature, executive and court are now all controlled by the same money party selecting for the same full-spectrum predation of life and life support systems everywhere to multiply themselves. Yet still the long record of the US state and its oligarch allies destroying societies across the world is unspeakable in the mass media because they themselves are financed and advertised in by the same transnational corporations that demand the resources and territories of societies everywhere. The carcinogenic global causal mechanism is ever more evident and catastrophic, but not recognized.

Q: More than a decade after the 9/11 attacks, there are still several unanswered questions about the tragic event, including the origins and motives of the perpetrator, the role of foreign intelligence organizations in masterminding the attacks and the behind-the-scenes benefits of the attacks for the U.S. military-industrial complex. As you note in your writings, it was not Osama bin Laden who spearheaded the 9/11 attacks. Who is the real culprit? Did the 9/11 attacks play into the hands of the Bush administration to set in motion its lethal project of War on Terror and start invading different countries?

A: My recent monograph on the Internet, “The Moral Decoding of 9-11: Beyond the U.S. Criminal State” is a definitive answer to these questions. The turning-point event is laid bare step by step as a mass-murderous construction whose scenario is anticipated and contrived by US geostrategic planners with the official investigation completely concealing the basic fact that fireproofed steel infrastructures collapsed at the speed of gravity into their own footprints against the laws of physics. Moreover the first question of forensic justice – cui bono, who benefits? – is ruled out from the start, although every subsequent policy, decision and new power served the interests of the Bush Jr. regime and the US military-oil complex against the welfare of the American public and the world, especially Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran.

Unfortunately conspiracy theories miss the inner logic of the strategic event and the system disorder driving it. The official conspiracy theory is absurd, but every disbeliever in it is pilloried as a ‘conspiracy theorist’ – the reverse projection which is the signature operation of US propaganda. Always blame others for what the US does as the reason for attacking them. One might laugh at the same old propaganda psy-op and fabrications trotted out endlessly, but the terrible reality is the 9/11 construction has had effectively sabotaged international progress in solving the world’s gravest problems. It has dismantled the global peace movement that was reaching an historical peak in 2001 to stop US-led militarism after the Cold War. It has successfully suppressed world-wide uprisings against a US-led global corporate dictatorship despised and opposed by ever more citizens across America, Europe and the world. It has even formed the draconian laws and police practices needed to squash the world-wide environmental movement across the world at same time. 9/11 has, in short, vastly empowered the corporate money system devouring human and planetary life by falsifying opponents as “terrorists”. But who joins the dots of the Great Repression?

Q: Since its inception 66 years ago, CIA has been involved in numerous covert sabotage, anti-sabotage, assassination, propaganda, destruction and subversion plans against other countries, and during the course of all these covert actions, it has violated different internationally recognized treaties and regulations as well as the sovereignty and territorial integrity of these nations. Are these actions and gambits legal or illegal? If they are illegal, then why doesn’t any international organization investigate the crimes and hold the U.S. government accountable?

A: Yes this is a turning-point issue of the world. But the US record as a rogue state is unspeakable in the mass media because they are financed and advertised in by the same transnational corporations that demand the resources and territories of the world by threat of trade-investment embargo and the point of the gun of US and NATO forces. This is what the lawless but unnamed US reign of terror achieves – not only by war crimes and crimes against humanity, but by economic ruin for any society resisting transnational trade treaties and demands which recognize only foreign corporate rights to profit. If the underlying causal mechanism is taboo to recognize, unaccountability is the result. Blame is instead diverted to US-designated enemies – like Iran or Russia or Venezuela – and the society-destroying disorder rampages on.

In fact there are many life-protective international laws to hold the US accountable to, but every one of them is repudiated by the US so as not to apply to itself ; laws and conventions against nuclear weapons, biological weapons, chemical weapons, landmines, small arms, international ballistic missiles, torture, racism, sexism, child abuse, arbitrary seizure and imprisonment, crimes against humanity and war crimes, military weather distortions, biodiversity loss, and international climate destabilization. Yet this record remains taboo to track or publish even as the US demonizes others for “defying the laws and norms of the international community”.

The US and ally Israel thus violate the laws against armed aggression, occupation and crimes against humanity at will, but who even knows or cites the laws?  For example, when the US was about to perpetrate the supreme crime of invasion against Iraq in 2003 with no lawful grounds, no-one raised the issue at the Security Council, including the Iraqi diplomat there. As one who later debated on Canadian public television a leading US geostrategic analyst three days before the criminal bombing of Baghdad began, my statement  that he was “advocating war crime and should be arrested for doing so” was deleted from the live broadcast. The cornerstone of international law is thus silenced while the media go on calling opponents “unpatriotic” or “terrorists” – as in Nazi Germany. If law-abiding states do not stand and join for the rule of international life-protective law, there seems no end.

Posted in USA, Human Rights0 Comments

US Regime Change in Venezuela

NOVANEWS

US Regime Change in Venezuela: The Truth Is Easy if You Follow the Money Trail. The Opposition is Pro-Washington, Not “Pro-Democracy”

First published by GR in August 2017

Venezuela’s ongoing crisis is not driven by political ideology – it is not a battle of socialism versus capitalism or dictatorship versus democracy – it is the result of two centers of political power possessing opposing interests and colliding geopolitically.

The nation of Venezuela is currently under the control of Venezuelans who derive their support, wealth, and power from Venezuela itself – its people and its natural resource. This political order also receives aid and support from Venezuela’s economic and military partners both in the region and around the globe.

The opposition opposed to the current political order and seeking to supplant it represents foreign interests and more specifically, the United States and its European allies.

The Opposition is Pro-Washington, Not “Pro-Democracy”

As early as 2002, US-backed regime change targeting then Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, sought to violently overthrow Venezuela’s political order and replace it with one obedient to Washington. Current leaders of the opposition were not only involved in the 2002 failed coup, many are documented to have received political and financial support from the United States government ever since.

Maria Corina Machado, founder of Sumate, an alleged Venezuelan election monitoring group, funded by the US National Endowment for Democracy (NED), meeting with US President George Bush who presided over the failed coup attempt seeking to oust President Hugo Chavez. (Source: Land Destroyer Report)

This includes several founders of the opposition party, Primero Justicia (Justice First), including Leopoldo LopezJulio Borges, and Henrique Capriles Radonski. The latter of the three has been prominently featured in Western media coverage lately.

US State Department documents reveal that the department itself along with US-funded fronts posing as nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have been providing Venezuela’s opposition with support.

This includes a  report titled, “Status of Capriles and Sumate Cases,” referring to the above mentioned Henrique Capriles Radonski and Sumate, a US National Endowment for Democracy (NED) funded front posing as an election monitor.

Currently, NED’s own website features an extensive list of activities it is engaged in within Venezuela’s borders. It includes leveraging human rights for political gain, electoral manipulation, building opposition fronts, and expanding pro-opposition media. While each activity is labelled with benign titles, it is clear that none of these activities are done impartially, and as State Department documents reveal, these activities are done specifically for the benefit of the US-backed opposition.

Wall Street and Washington’s Open Conspiracy 

After the death of Chavez in 2013, US-based special interests openly conspired to finally overturn the political order he built. Corporate-financier policy think tank, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) created a checklist of US foreign policy goals it sought to achieve in Venezuela. They included:

  • The ouster of narco-kingpins who now hold senior posts in government
  • The respect for a constitutional succession
  • The adoption of meaningful electoral reforms to ensure a fair campaign environment and a transparent vote count in expected presidential elections; and
  • The dismantling of Iranian and Hezbollah networks in Venezuela

In reality, AEI is talking about dismantling entirely the obstacles that have prevented the US and the corporate-financier interests that direct it, from installing a client regime and extracting entirely Venezuela’s wealth while obstructing, even dismantling the geopolitical independence and influence achieved by Chavez in Venezuela, throughout South America, and beyond.

The think tank would continue by stating:

Now is the time for US diplomats to begin a quiet dialogue with key regional powers to explain the high cost of Chávez’s criminal regime, including the impact of chavista complicity with narcotraffickers who sow mayhem in Colombia, Central America, and Mexico. Perhaps then we can convince regional leaders to show solidarity with Venezuelan democrats who want to restore a commitment to the rule of law and to rebuild an economy that can be an engine for growth in South America.

By “Venezuelan democrats,” AEI means proxies created, funded, and directed by Washington, including Primero Justicia and the street mobs and paramilitary units it commands.

More recently, another Wall Street-Washington policy think tank, the Brookings Institution, would publish in a paper titled, “Venezuela: A path out of crisis,” a 5-point plan toward escalating the crisis in Venezuela (emphasis added):

1. The United States could expand its assistance to countries that until now have been dependent on Venezuelan oil, as a means to decrease regional support for and dependence on the Maduro government.

2. The United States could increase monetary assistance to credible civil society organizations and nongovernmental organizations able to deliver food and medicines to Venezuelans. By doing so, the United States should make clear that international pressure aims to support democracy, not punish the Venezuelan people.

3. The United States could support efforts by the opposition in Venezuela to build an “off-ramp” that would split moderate elements of the government away from hardliners, encouraging the former to acquiesce to a transition to democracy by lowering their costs of exiting government.

4. The United States could coordinate with international institutions such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to offer financial incentives for holding free and fair elections in 2018, and for the opposition to unify and compete in those elections. Such coordination would also involve developing and publicizing a credible plan to restart Venezuela’s economy.

5. As a last resort, the United States could consider raising economic costs to the government through an expanded sanctions regime that aims to limit Venezuelan earnings from oil exports and block further financing. This policy is risky, given that the Maduro government would be able to more credibly shift blame for the economic crisis onto the United States, and should be accompanied by well-publicized efforts to deliver humanitarian aid through credible civil society and nongovernmental organizations.

While the Western media attempts to frame Venezuela’s crisis as a result of “socialism” and “dictatorship,” it is clear by reading the West’s own policy papers that it is owed instead to a systematic assault on Venezuela’s sociopolitical stability and economic viability, spanning decades.

Venezuela is not the first nation in South America that the United States has sought to overturn by undermining its economy.

Within the CIA’s own online archives under a section titled, “CIA Activities in Chile,” it is admitted that in the 1970s, similar tactics were used to undermine and overturn the government of Chile. It states specifically: (emphasis added):

According to the Church Committee report, in their meeting with CIA Director Richard Helms and Attorney General John Mitchell on 15 September 1970 President Nixon and his National Security Advisor, Henry Kissinger, directed the CIA to prevent Allende from taking power. They were “not concerned [about the] risks involved,” according to Helms’ notes. In addition to political action, Nixon and Kissinger, according to Helms’s notes, ordered steps to “make the economy scream.” 

These Cold War attitudes persisted into the Pinochet era. After Pinochet came to power, senior policymakers appeared reluctant to criticize human rights violations, taking to task US diplomats urging greater attention to the problem. US military assistance and sales grew significantly during the years of greatest human rights abuses. According to a previously released Memorandum of Conversation, Kissinger in June 1976 indicated to Pinochet that the US Government was sympathetic to his regime, although Kissinger advised some progress on human rights in order to improve Chile’s image in the US Congress. 

Considering America’s extensive list of interventions, wars, and occupations it is currently involved in worldwide and the manner in which each was presented to the public – with ideology and humanitarian concerns used to manipulate public perception, and considering Venezuela’s opposition is a documented recipient of US support, it is clear that yet another intervention is under way, this time in South America.

Unipolar vs Multipolar

In a world moving toward multipolarism and greater decentralization on all levels, Venezuela’s collapse and a victory for Washington would undo an increasingly balanced distribution of geopolitical power – both in South and Central America, as well as across the world.

As a major oil producing nation, US control over its people and natural resources would further allow the US and its allies to manipulate energy prices toward achieving future goals – particularly in terms of encircling, isolating, and dismantling other centers of political power dependent on oil production for economic prosperity.

One needs not be a fan of “socialism” to understand that the ultimate outcome of Venezuela’s collapse will be a further concentration of power in Washington and Wall Street’s hands. Such power, regardless of whatever ideology it is superficially wielded behind, will always be abused. Regardless of the alleged form of government a nation may take, as long as it is a step away from unipolar globalization, it is a step in the right direction.

The crisis in Venezuela is not one of socialism versus capitalism or dictatorship versus democracy – it is one of hegemony versus national sovereignty, of centralized unipolar power versus an increasingly multipolar world.

A sovereign and independent Venezuela allowed to pursue its own destiny is one in which its own people will naturally seek to decentralize and distribute power. While the current government may not provide the ideal conditions to accomplish this, conditions under a US client regime – as US-wrecked Libya, Afghanistan, or Iraq prove – would be significantly less ideal.

For geopolitical analysts, moving away from ideological talking points and examining the actual government and opposition, their interests, associations, and funding, as well as their base motives reveals a much simpler and consistent narrative, one that any analyst could discern, and a discernment that will stand the test of scrutiny and time. Those entrenched in left/right ideology risk being betrayed by the government’s floundering desperation and the true nature of an opposition that most certainly is not “capitalist” or “pro-democracy.”

Posted in USA, Venezuela0 Comments

China’s Pivot to World Markets, Washington’s Pivot to World Wars

NOVANEWS

And the Debacle of the Latin American Left

First published by GR in August 2016

China and the United States are moving in polar opposite directions: Beijing is rapidly becoming the center of overseas investments in high tech industries, including robotics, nuclear energy and advanced machinery with collaboration from centers of technological excellence, like Germany.

In contrast, Washington is pursuing a predatory military pivot to the least productive regions with collaboration from its most barbaric allies, like Saudi Arabia.

China is advancing to global economic superiority by borrowing and innovating the most advance methods of production, while the US degrades and debases its past immense productive achievements to promote wars of destruction.

China’s growing prominence is the result of a cumulative process that advanced in a systematic way, combining step-by-step growth of productivity and innovation with sudden jumps up the ladder of cutting edge technology.

China’s Stages of Growth and Success

China has moved from a country, highly dependent on foreign investment in consumer industries for exports, to an economy, based on joint public-private investments in higher value exports.

China’s early growth was based on cheap labor, low taxes and few regulations on multi-national capital.  Foreign capital and local billionaires stimulated growth, based on high rates of profit.  As the economy grew, China’s economy shifted toward increasing its indigenous technological expertise and demanding greater ‘local content’ for manufactured goods.

By the beginning of the new millennium China was developing high-end industries, based on local patents and engineering skills, channeling a high percentage of investments into civilian infrastructure, transportation and education.

Massive apprenticeship programs created a skilled labor force that raised productive capacity.  Massive enrollment in science, math, computer science and engineering universities provided a large influx of high-end innovators, many of whom had gained expertise in the advanced technology of overseas competitors.

China’s strategy has been based on the practice of borrowing, learning, upgrading and competing with the most advanced economics of Europe and the US.

By the end of the last decade of the 20th century, China was in a position to move overseas. The accumulation process provided China with the financial resources to capture dynamic overseas enterprises.

China was no longer confined to investing in overseas minerals and agriculture in Third World countries.  China is looking to conquer high-end technological sectors in advanced economics.

By the second decade of the 21st century Chinese investors moved into Germany, Europe’s most advanced industrial giant.  During the first 6 months of 2016 Chinese investors acquired 37 German companies, compared with 39 in all of 2015.  China’s total investments in Germany for 2016 may double to over $22 billion dollars.

In 2016, China successfully bought out KOKA, Germany’s most innovative engineering company.  China’s strategy is to gain superiority in the digital future of industry.

China is rapidly moving to automate its industries, with plans to double the robot density of the US by the year 2020.

Chinese and Austrian scientists successfully launched the first quantum-enabled satellite communication system which is reportedly ‘hack proof’, ensuring China’s communications security.

While China’s global investments proceed to dominate world markets, the US, England and Australia have been trying to impose investment barriers. By relying on phony ‘security threats’, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May blocked a multi-billion dollar Chinese investment-heavy nuclear plant (Hinckley Point C). The pretext was the spurious claim that China would use its stake to “engage in energy blackmail, threatening to turn off the power in the event of international crises”.

The US Committee on Foreign Investment has blocked several multi-billion dollar Chinese investments in high tech industries.

In August 2016 Australia blocked an $8 billion-dollar purchase of a controlling stake in its biggest electricity distribution network on specious claims of ‘national security’.

The Anglo-American and German empires are on the defensive.  They increasingly cannot compete economically with China, even in defending their own innovative industries.

In large part this is the result of their failed policies.  Western economic elite have increasingly relied on short-term speculation in finance, real estate and insurance, while neglecting their industrial base.

Led by the US, their reliance on military conquests (militaristic empire-building) absorb public resources, while China has directed its domestic resources toward innovative and advanced technology.

To counter China’s economic advance, the Obama regime has implemented a policy of building economic walls at home, trade restrictions abroad and military confrontation in the South China Seas – China’s strategic trade routes.

US officials have ratcheted up their restrictions on Chinese investments in high tech US enterprises including a $3.8 billion investment in Western Digital and Philips attempt to sell its lighting business.  The US blocked ‘Chen China’s planned $44 billion takeover of Swiss chemical group ‘Syngenta’.

US officials are doing everything possible to stop innovative billion dollar deals that include China as a strategic partner.

Accompanying its domestic wall, the US has been mobilizing an overseas blockade of China via its Trans-Pacific-Partnership, which proposes to exclude Beijing from participating in the ‘free trade zone’ with a dozen North America, Latin American and Asian members.  Nevertheless, not a single member-nation of the TPP has cut back its trade with China.  On the contrary, they are increasing ties with China – an eloquent comment on Obama’s skill at ‘pivoting’.

While the ‘domestic economic wall’ has had some negative impacts on particular Chinese investors, Washington has failed to dent China’s exports to US markets.  Washington’s failure to block China’s trade has been even more damaging to Washington’s effort to encircle China in Asia and Latin America, Oceana and Asia.

Australia, New Zealand, Peru, Chile, Taiwan, Cambodia and South Korea depend on Chinese markets far more than on the US to survive and grow.

While Germany, faced with China’s dynamic growth, has chosen to ‘partner’ and share, up-scale productive investments, Washington has opted to form military alliances to confront China.

The US bellicose military alliance with Japan has not intimidated China.  Rather it has downgraded their domestic economies and economic influence in Asia.

Moreover, Washington’s “military pivot” has deepened and expanded China’s strategic links to Russia’s energy sources and military technology.

While the US spends hundreds of billions in military alliances with the backward Baltic client-regimes and the parasitical Middle Eastern states, (Saudi Arabia, Israel), China accumulates strategic expertise from its economic ties with Germany, resources from Russia and market shares among Washington’s ‘partners’ in Asia and Latin America.

There is no question that China, following the technological and productive path of Germany, will win out over the US’s economic isolationist and global militarist strategy.

If the US has failed to learn from the successful economic strategy of China, the same failure can explain the demise of the progressive regimes in Latin America.

China’s Success and the Latin American Retreat

After more than a decade of growth and stability, Latin America’s progressive regimes have retreated and declined.  Why has China continued on the path of stability and growth while their Latin American partners retreated and suffered defeats?

Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia and Ecuador, for over a decade, served as Latin America’s center-left success story.  Their economies grew, social spending increased, poverty and unemployment were reduced and worker incomes expanded.

Subsequently their economies went into crisis, social discontent grew and the center-left regimes fell.

In contrast to China, the Latin American center-left regimes did not diversify their economies:  they remained heavily dependent on the commodity boom for growth and stability.

The Latin American elites borrowed and depended on foreign investment, and financial capital, while China engaged in public investments in industry, infrastructure, technology and education.

Latin American progressives joined with foreign capitalist and local speculators in non-productive real estate speculation and consumption, while China invested in innovative industries at home and abroad.  While China consolidated political rulership, the Latin American progressives “allied” with strategic domestic and overseas multi-national adversaries to ‘share power’, which were, in fact, eagerly prepared to oust their “left” allies.

When the Latin commodity based economy collapsed, so did the political links with their elite partners.  In contrast, China’s industries benefited from the lower global commodity prices, while Latin America’s left suffered.  Faced with widespread corruption, China launched a major campaign purging over 200,000 officials.  In Latin America, the Left ignored corrupt officials, allowing the opposition to exploit the scandals to oust center-left officials.

While Latin America imported machinery and parts from the West; China bought the entire Western companies producing the machines and their technology – and then implemented Chinese technological improvements.

China successfully outgrew the crisis, defeated its adversaries and proceeded to expand local consumption and stabilized rulership.

Latin America’s center-left suffered political defeats in Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay, lost elections in Venezuela and Bolivia and retreated in Uruguay.

Conclusion

China’s political economic model has outperformed the imperialist West and leftist Latin America.   While the US has spent billions in the Middle East for wars on behalf of Israel, China has invested similar amounts in Germany for advanced technology, robotics and digital innovations.

While President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s “pivot to Asia” has been largely a wasteful military strategy to encircle and intimidate China, Beijing’s “pivot to markets” has successfully enhanced its economic competitiveness.  As a result, over the past decade, China’s growth rate is three times that of the US; and in the next decade China will double the US in ‘robotizing’ its productive economy.

The US ‘pivot to Asia’, with its heavy dependence on military threats and intimidation has cost billions of dollars in lost markets and investments.  China’s ‘pivot to advanced technology’ demonstrates that the future lies in Asia not the West. China’s experience offers lessons for future Latin American leftist governments.

First and foremost, China emphasizes the necessity of balanced economic growth, over and above short-term benefits resulting from commodity booms and consumerist strategies.

Secondly, China demonstrates the importance of professional and worker technical education for technological innovation, over and above  business school and non-productive ‘speculative’ education so heavily emphasized in the US.

Thirdly, China balances its social spending with investment in core productive activity; competitiveness and social services are combined.

China’s enhanced growth and social stability, its commitment to learning and surpassing advanced economies has important limitations, especially in the areas of social equality and popular power.  Here China can learn from the experience of Latin America’s Left.  The social gains under Venezuela’s President Chavez are worthy of study and emulation; the popular movements in Bolivia, Ecuador and Argentina, which ousted neo-liberals from power, could enhance efforts in China to overcome the business- state nexus of pillage and capital flight.

China, despite its socio-political and economic limitations, has successfully resisted US military pressures and even ‘turned the tables’ by advancing on the West.

In the final analysis, China’s model of growth and stability certainly offers an approach that is far superior to the recent debacle of the Latin American Left and the political chaos resulting from Washington’s quest for global military supremacy.

Posted in USA, China0 Comments

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