Tuesday/Wednesday, April 17-18, 2007
When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, the world hailed the end of the Cold War. The U.S. and the Soviet Union would have billions of extra dollars to spend on education, health care, infrastructure upgrades, and job creation. The term used in the U.S. was the "peace dividend."
While most of the world was celebrating a future of world peace, the U.S., with little fanfare, began to write the last chapter of its book on taking over the world. Today, the results are evident to anyone, except mainstream America, who is still in a state of denial. To them, the Cold War is still being enacted, but with different players. The decades-old battle of East vs. West has turned 90 degrees to a North vs. South confrontation. The North represents mainly the U.S., with Europe being basically a neutral observer, and the South is comprised of Third World nations, most of whom are populated by people of color.
The 1990s were crucial in the development of U.S. world hegemony. Little-by-little, the pieces began to fall for the rest of the word as America extended its tentacles to very corner of the Earth. At times, there was direct military intervention; at times military threats; and, sometimes, military hardware did not have to be pulled out of the warehouses because economic intrusion did the job.
The U.S. learned that by surrounding potential "enemy" countries, it could control its greedy interests without going to war. Just look at a map. Russia is almost surrounded by former Soviet republics that have signed military agreements with the U.S.; Iran has borders with Iraq and Afghanistan, two countries the U.S. is occupying. Ethiopia is another new U.S. ally and it borders Sudan, a possible U.S. adversary. North Korea is the last link in countries bordering China. The U.S. does not care if North Korea has nuclear weapons; it only wants to control North Korea and have a military presence near China.
Today, the U.S. has a military presence in more than 140 countries. The U.N. consists of 192 national members, leaving few countries without a U.S. military footprint.
How did the "peace dividend" turn into a nightmare for various countries that the U.S. has attacked since the demise of the Soviet Union? Members of a once little-known group have been behind the push for word domination.
In 1997, "The Project for the New American Century (PNAC)" unveiled its agenda. It was quite simple: the U.S. should take over the world by military means during the 21st century.
The group may not have been well-known in 1997, but many of its charter members were: Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, Elliot Abrams, Gary Bauer, Elliot Cohen and others.
Most were members of the Reagan administration at various levels. They were young conservative activists who helped write some of the diabolical policies of the Reagan years. Their power receded slightly under George Bush I and more under Bill Clinton. In fact, the Republican Party of the early 1990s evaded them and nicknamed them "The Crazies."
When George Bush II was appointed president of the U.S. in 2000, The Crazies came out of hiding. They were given the new moniker of "neoconservatives" or "neocons." Bush immediately began appointing them to positions in the new government. They were the same names, but with different titles. Rumsfeld was secretary of defense and Cheney was vice-president. Wolfowitz became Rumsfeld’s assistant. Elliot Abrams was given another title, but his duties were the same as under Reagan: keep a low profile but initiate and implement vile activities.
The chart accompanying this article shows the names and government positions of signers of the PNAC as well as excerpts from a letter they sent to Clinton in 1998 advising him to attack Iraq.
Despite the Republican election losses of 2006, The Crazies are still calling the shots, especially in foreign policy. They surround Bush and pump their ideology to him and he, in turn, passes it on to the public.
These people may be crazy, but they are not stupid. They have found and exploited the ethnocentric nerve that runs through many Americans. When the discussion about military intervention, or economic sanctions arises, most Americans accept the decision and allow the leaders to enact their vile policies.
There are many ways in which the U.S. controls foreign nations. Let’s look at Egypt, for example. The Egyptian military is mainly supplied by the U.S. But, the U.S. has put limits on the independence of the Egyptian military by limiting stocks of spare parts as well as controlling Egyptian military communications. If the Egyptian army ever becomes a threat to Israel, the spare parts shipments would be halted.
The main task for Egypt’s military is to protect Hosni Mubarak, the country’s president. He is in the pockets of the U.S. and he must remain in power without opposition.
The control of Egypt does not end with keeping tabs on its military power. The country must rely on outside help to feed its quickly-growing population. The U.S. supplies four million tons of wheat a year to Egypt through aid programs that must be approved by the U.S. Congress. Many of those who vote to retain the aid programs are staunch supporters of Israel. Mubarak knows this and he does not rock the boat. If he did, his country would quickly suffer a devastating famine.
Many Democrats criticize the Bush administration about its foreign policy, but their record is not much better. To ensure the continuation of the embargo against Iraq in the 1990s, Clinton spokespeople consistently lied about its weapons of mass destruction. More Iraqis died during Clinton’s tenure than under the two Bush regimes. Madeleine Albright, Clinton’s secretary of state, when asked if the embargo was worth the lives of a million Iraqi children, unhesitatingly answered, "Yes."
Bush II has merely escalated the xenophobia and ethnocentrism that grips much of the U.S. He has taken the concept of world domination up a notch or two. Clinton was more subtle about U.S. hegemony. He never made the statement that Bush did when he promised "to export death and violence to the four corners of the Earth in defense of this grate country and rid the world of evil."
Omar Barghouti, an independent Palestinian political analyst, stated:
We are witnessing the ominous rise of the most powerful empire ever to exist. Judging from consistent media reports and opinion polls, the rest of the world seems to view it as a menacing rogue state that is arrogantly bullying other nations, east and west, north and south, into unqualified submission to its self-declared designs for world domination and incontestable economic supremacy.
He has aptly stated how the rest of the word sees the U.S. — a view totally opposite to that shared by most Americans. He added:
A century and a half after officially abolishing slavery in the U.S., the new-old masters have a diabolical agenda to resurrect it, except this time on a worldwide scale.
The U.S. has copied the former imperialist actions of Great Britain by forcing countries to relinquish their raw materials. Today’s treasures, instead of gold, cotton and spices, can be explained in one word: oil. This commodity is not merely a raw material for fuelling the economies of the world, but it has become the number one item for power and bragging rights. Hence, Iraq had to be invaded by the U.S. for a show of power. According to Robert E. Ebel, director of the energy program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies:
Oil fuels military power, national treasuries, and international politics. It is no longer commodity to be bought and sold within the confines of traditional energy supply and demand balances. Rather, it has been transformed onto a determinant of well-being, of national security, and of international power.
Michael Klare, professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College, added:
Controlling Iraq is about oil as power, rather than oil as fuel. Control over the Persian Gulf translates into control over Europe, Japan, and China. It’s like having our hand on the spigot.
Now, it becomes even more clear why the U.S. had to invade Iraq. It was for total domination, not the ouster of a regime or the destruction of invisible weapons. The Portuguese writer and Nobel laureate, Jose Saramago, said: "We are marching against the law of the jungle that the United States and its acolytes old and new want to impose on the world."
Even former U.N. Secretary General Boutrous Ghali, who more than once supported U.S. hegemony in U.N. affairs, now sees the entire picture. He said:
Multilateralism and unilateralism are just methods for the United States: they use them a la carte, as it suits them. The United Nations is just an instrument at the service of American policy.
Millions of Americans hold the U.N. in contempt and maintain that the New York-based agency is attempting to impede U.S. sovereignty. They speak of a "one-world government" in which the U.N. rules every country. In reality, the opposite is occurring. The U.S. uses the U.N. when it can for legitimacy, and, when the members oppose the U.S., the Americans accuse them of not doing their job and then ensue their own agenda.
The acquiescence of the American people to their government’s (Democrat and Republican parties) policies has led to a point in history that is very dangerous for the rest of the world. Eventually, that hazard will rebound in the U.S. I never thought I would be the citizen of a country, that, in its own words, tells its citizens not to visit more than 100 countries on the Earth because their lives may be in danger. The Department of State lists the countries which consist of democracies, dictatorships, kingdoms, leftist governments, rightist governments, authoritarian governments, etc. In other words, there is no common political persuasion to the opposition of U.S. policy worldwide. U.S. foreign policy has taken away the freedom to travel for many of its citizens and turned what was once an enjoyable vacation into a life-threatening experience.
A German journalist recently stated:
Every day conservative U.S. ideologues deepen the rift by accusing Europeans alternatively of being arrogant, incompetent or simply stupid. In this situation, there remains nothing for the Europeans to do than to free themselves once and for all from the U.S. Politically and morally, it will not be a problem — but militarily, things are much more difficult.
He hit the nail right on the head. U.S. military might is overwhelming. While the rest of the world was talking of the peace dividend following the Cold War, the U.S. just kept on increasing its war machine. But, there are occurrences that could alter the balance.
France, Belgium and Germany are behind an effort to create s strong European military, aloof of NATO. The U.S. has told them it is not necessary, but forward-thinking Europeans think otherwise. They can see their countries being future Iraqs within decades.
Another event is happening that will slow down the U.S. power grab. In Iraq, the people are fighting back. For decades, the U.S. had been able to conduct wars against various Third World countries with little loss of life on the U.S. side, while dealing out massive amounts of death and damage to the opponents. In Panama and Grenada, the U.S. death toll was a couple of dozen. In Somalia, again a few dozen. In the campaign against Serbia, the U.S. did not lose one service person. The irony of the Serbian campaign is that the former president of Serbia, the late Slobodan Milosevic, went on trial in the Hague for killing al-Qaida-trained Muslim insurgents in Serbia, while U.S. soldiers received medals of merit for employing the same actions against al-Qaida-trained Afghanis.
Iraq broke the mold of the U.S. attacking countries without having to pay a high price in human lives. The U.S. lost about 100 military personnel before Bush declared victory over Iraq on May 1, 2003. That was a small price to pay. But, the Iraqis did not appreciate the U.S. actions and began a resistance that is constantly growing and becoming more proficient. Several thousand U.S. military people have died and more than 20,000 have been severely injured with lost limbs, blindness and brain damage.
The momentum is beginning to change. Many nations have taken notes on the Iraqi resistance strategy. In the entire history of warfare, a determined guerilla movement has always eventually worn out a militarily superior force. However, the U.S. is still in denial of the real reasons of its calamity in Iraq. Even with the Democrat’s victory in the 2006 elections, Bush is still threatening any country that will not kiss his backside. The Democrats, instead of creating an anti-imperialist movement, have said they will maintain the status quo on the basic issues of homeland security and foreign affairs. It will take more misadventures, such as that of Iraq, to convince U.S. politicians to re-think their policies of world domination.
An often-heard statement is "history repeats itself." Sometimes, it is hard to believe this in today’s unipolar world. But, when one compares the rise and fall of the Roman Empire with today’s U.S.-dominated world, there is compelling logic in the argument.