Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

More on Biden's Syria bombing.....

 


  …To accept the “Biden doctrine” for bombing a country and killing people there, would mean that the US thinks it has the right to go to war in any of the 80 or so countries where the US has military bases or military personnel “posted” or even, one must suppose, where the US has dispatched special forces to engage in military action without invitation, as in Niger or Yemen. All that’s required is for one US soldier in any of those places to be “threatened.”

This is not justified war. It is a justification for the law of the jungle.

As Francis Boyle, an international law specialist at the University of Illinois puts it, “It reminds me of the ‘defense’ the lawyers made for the Nazi leaders before the Nuremberg Tribunal from 1945-46: that the entire World War II was a war of self-defense of the German Reich as determined by the Nazi government and that no one had standing to complain otherwise.”  He adds, “Of course the Nuremberg Judgement made quick work of that argument by ruling that what is a war of self defense can only be determined by an international tribunal. Several Nazi leaders were then hanged for their crimes against peace.”
 

By Francis A. Boyle

White rule continues in Haiti

 


 Black Alliance for Peace

 
It is the white rulers who spent millions building prisons in Haiti and funding and training the Haitian police  and military. It is the white rulers who have turned a blind eye to the atrocities of the Moïse administration. It is the white rulers who have condoned the lack of parliamentary elections, the ruling of the country by decree, and the rewriting of the Haitian constitution. Most importantly, it is the white rulers who have affirmed Moïse’s illegal extension of his ruling mandate. —Jemima Pierre, “Haiti: Black Despots and White Rulers”

After the “anti-democratic” Trump forces were defeated, the Biden-Harris administration assured it would re-commit to neo-liberal orthodoxy in both domestic and foreign policy with its slogan, “Build Back Better.” That promised a return to the “traditional” U.S. values of decency, democracy and human rights.

Yet, the Biden-Harris administration, as well as most U.S. policymakers and political representatives, employ a double standard: While expressing concern for oppressed people and rhetorically supporting “democratic” processes and human rights in their domestic and foreign policies, they inflict harm on millions of people around the world through their wars, subversions and sanctions.

While neo-liberal Democrats pretend Black lives matter in the United States, the Biden-Harris administration blatantly supports dictatorial rule in Haiti—and they are getting away with it.

As BAP recently stated in response to the situation in Haiti: “The abandonment of the people of Haiti affirms once again the United States is committed to white power.” 

 

Note the green USAID outfits (click on the photo for a better view). That tells you everything you need to know about who really runs Haiti.

But it is not just in Haiti where the lives of non-Europeans are pawns in the global chessboard of U.S.-Western imperialism. The Biden administration already has abandoned peace in Afghanistan for longer term geostrategic and capitalist interests. The U.S. war in Afghanistan is referred to as the “longest U.S. war.” That is only because the more than 200-year-old war against Indigenous peoples in the United States and the 70-year-old war with North Korea are excluded.

Within the first month of the Biden administration, we also have witnessed the escalation of tensions with China; support for fascist oppositions in Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia; a rejection of calls to end the militarization of U.S. police forces through the federal 1033 program; the expansion the U.S. military presence in Africa; and a U.S. troop presence increase in Syria.

As we said in our last newsletter: “The Biden-Harris administration intends to pick up exactly where the Obama-Biden administration left off in 2016, with an aggressive assertion of U.S. military power to offset its declining global economic, political and moral position.”

This is the essence of the neo-liberals’ “Building Back Better.” And that is why we—the forces committed to peace, self-determination, People(s)-Centered Human Rights, ecological sustainability and life—must organize ourselves and build a better oppositional movement that places the people, the planet and peace over profits.

Friday, February 26, 2021

Didn't take long: Biden now at war with Iran

 


The Associated Press reports: 

The United States launched airstrikes in Syria on Thursday, targeting facilities near the Iraqi border used by Iranian-backed militia groups. The Pentagon said the strikes were retaliation for a rocket attack in Iraq earlier this month that killed one civilian contractor and wounded a U.S. service member and other coalition troops.

The airstrike was the first military action undertaken by the Biden administration, which in its first weeks has emphasized its intent to put more focus on the challenges posed by China, even as Mideast threats persist.

Now let's 'unpack' this one as they say in the biz.  The US is illegally in Syria.  Russia has been invited by the Syrian government to help them fight against terrorists that are clearly supported by US, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Israel.  Iran has been invited by Syria to help as well.  (That is legal under international law.) The US uses its current occupation of part of Syria to steal their oil and to give Israel the chance to grab even more land from the Syrian people - as part of the goal to create a 'Greater Israel'.

Washington says it had to bomb targets in Syria to pay back Iran for recent attacks on US troops in Iraq.  Washington lies when it claims it is still in Iraq at the 'invitation' of that government.  The fact is that the Iraqi government has told the US to leave their country.

So the US is doubly violating international law in this case with illegal occupations in Iraq and Syria.  But since when does Washington care about 'the rule of law'?  If you doubt me just ask the Indigenous people of North America about Washington breaking treaties and following the rule of law.

At least (and I am quite surprised to see this) the AP did offer this quote in the article:

Mary Ellen O’Connell, a professor at Notre Dame Law School, criticized the U.S. attack as a violation of international law.

“The United Nations Charter makes absolutely clear that the use of military force on the territory of a foreign sovereign state is lawful only in response to an armed attack on the defending state for which the target state is responsible,” she said. “None of those elements is met in the Syria strike.”

The Pentagon claims that the attack on its troops in Iraq was done by Iranian-backed Iraqi Shiite forces. Might be true, might not be true.  The AP again reports:

Biden administration officials condemned the Feb. 15 rocket attack near the city of Irbil in Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish-run region, but as recently as this week officials indicated they had not determined for certain who carried it out.
So what can you really believe out of the mouths of the new Biden administration - which has boasted 'We're back'!

But even if true it means that Iraqi people attacked the US for being inside their nation.  So what if Iran backs them!  Iran borders Iraq and is actually surrounded by US bases in the region. What is the US still doing in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and other nations in the region anyway?!

The world needs to wake up and call out the US for war crimes - virtually everywhere. US-NATO are insanely poking Iran, Russia and China with a big stick - looking to make trouble that will justify more military expenditures, more war and more occupations. 

Isn't it way past time to sanction Washington and Brussels?

Bruce

 



Teaching Russia democracy?

 

I read an article in Foreign Policy (FP) magazine this past week about Russia's transition to new leadership after the expected retirement of Vladimir Putin once his current term runs out. The article does what most western 'elite' journals do - they give you a seed of information and a whole lot of posturing and power mongering.  Below are a few bits from the article.

 

Time to Think About a World Without Putin
The Russian leader is contemplating his mortality—as are his backers.

 Foreign Policy (FP)

Putin is not solely responsible for shaping Russia’s foreign and domestic policies, or the government structures that enact them. He heads a collective group of stakeholders, including business leaders, the siloviki (“securocrats”) of the armed forces and security services, and regional magnates. Putin and his network directly benefit from their positions of power, but the broader network of stakeholders also wants to remain in power and maintain their access to the state’s resources regardless of whether Putin is in command or not.

The Russian leadership, with Putin still serving as the main instigator and adjudicator, is thus looking to establish long-term political stability that would prevent future leaders from upsetting the balance they created. From Putin’s own patriotic perspective, this would spare Russia another weak leader like former President Boris Yeltsin who would allow the state to be weakened from within.


The main mechanism for securing this continuity is the recent slew of constitutional changes that are being enacted within Russia, which created a subtle yet significant shift of governance. Under the new constitution, for example, the Duma (Russia’s Parliament) obtains the sole power to appoint a series of cabinet members focused on domestic politics and economic policies, while the presidency obtains clearer powers in appointing the portion of the cabinet geared towards foreign policy and external security. Of similar importance is the rising role of Russia’s so-called Councils, including the Security Council (currently largely an advisory board to the president) and the Federation Council that represents the regions of the Russian Federation. New legislation is set to define the authority of these councils more clearly and will allow for a further separation of powers beyond the presidency.

 


The West needs to start considering what a Russia without Putin will look like, dissecting the new system and watching for opportunities to cultivate and support people within these power structures who can steer Russia on a course more conducive to U.S. interest.

To that end, the United States also needs to be extremely calculating in its use of targeted sanctions against members of the Russian government, and be flexible enough to ease or eliminate sanctions as a sign of good faith. The application of sanctions has multiplied profusely in recent years, and risks alienating a future generation of leaders who feel themselves cut off from and alien to the West. The United States must be mindful that future shifts in how Russia is governed and who is leading it are at most two decades away, and work towards dealing not just with Moscow today, but with the leaders of the future.

 

~ Foreign Policy (FP) is owned by Graham Holdings Company (formerly The Washington Post Company), a diversified American conglomerate holding company. Headquartered in Arlington County, Virginia, and incorporated in Delaware, it was once the owner of The Washington Post newspaper and Newsweek magazine.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

The huge price for a jab.....


 

Pfizer has become a terrorist. The US big pharma company is reportedly asking for military bases and sovereign assets as guarantee for vaccines. 

WION's Palki Sharma has the details.

In line at post office

 

 
Long line
at post office.
 
Cutbacks,
and plans for privatization,
having impact
as my favorite
clerk offers
each customer
the best service
possible,
under these 
stressful circumstances.
 
Five ahead of me
young man comes in,
drooping pants,
searching entire lobby 
for something unknown,
having no luck
he cries out to anyone
who might listen,
'I just want a change
of address form'.
Nothing happens.
He joins the line.

I decide to intervene
and shout out to
the friendly clerk
that the guy needs
a form,
the clerk eagerly 
gives him one.

I look at the young man
bent over a counter,
filling out the paperwork,
pants almost at his knees.
 
I think of Obama
telling youngsters,
'Pull up your damn pants'
 
I smile.  
 
Save our post office!
 
Bruce

Asia Watch: Learning about Myanmar

 

 

Red Lines host Anya Parampil speaks with Vijay Prashad, historian and Chief Correspondent for Globetrotter, about the military's recent takeover in Myanmar. 

By The Grayzone

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Opening the CIA’s Can of Worms

 

By Edward Curtin

Off-Guardian

The CIA and the media are part of the same criminal conspiracy,” wrote Douglas Valentine in his important book, The CIA As Organized Crime.

This is true.  The corporate mainstream media are stenographers for the national security state’s ongoing psychological operations aimed at the American people, just as they have done the same for an international audience.

We have long been subjected to this “information warfare,” whose purpose is to win the hearts and minds of the American people and pacify them into victims of their own complicity, just as it was practiced long ago by the CIA in Vietnam and by The New York Times, CBS, etc. on the American people then and over the years as the American warfare state waged endless wars, coups, false flag operations, and assassinations at home and abroad.

Another way of putting this is to say for all practical purposes when it comes to matters that bear on important foreign and domestic matters, the CIA and the corporate mainstream media cannot be distinguished.

For those who read and study history, it has long been known that the CIA has placed their operatives throughout every agency of the U.S. government, as explained by Fletcher Prouty in The Secret Team; that CIA officers Cord Myer and Frank Wisner operated secret programs to get some of the most vocal exponents of intellectual freedom among intellectuals, journalists, and writers to be their voices for unfreedom and censorship, as explained by Frances Stonor Saunders in The Cultural Cold War and Joel Whitney in Finks, among others; that Cord Myer was especially focused on and successful in “courting the Compatible Left” since right wingers were already in the Agency’s pocket.

All this is documented and not disputed.  It is shocking only to those who don’t do their homework and see what is happening today outside a broad historical context.

With the rise of alternate media and a wide array of dissenting voices on the internet, the establishment felt threatened and went on the defensive. It, therefore, should come as no surprise that those same elite corporate media are now leading the charge for increased censorship and the denial of free speech to those they deem dangerous, whether that involves wars, rigged elections, foreign coups, COVID-19, vaccinations, or the lies of the corporate media themselves.

 



Having already banned critics from writing in their pages and or talking on their screens, these media giants want to make the quieting of dissenting voices complete.

Just the other day The New York Times had this headline:

    Robert Kennedy Jr. Barred From Instagram Over False Virus Claims.

Notice the lack of the word alleged before “false virus claims.”  This is guilt by headline.  It is a perfect piece of propaganda posing as reporting, since it accuses Kennedy, a brilliant and honorable man, of falsity and stupidity, thus justifying Instagram’s ban, and it is an inducement to further censorship of Mr. Kennedy by Facebook, Instagram’s parent company.

That ban should follow soon, as the Times’ reporter Jennifer Jett hopes, since she accusingly writes that RFK, Jr. “makes many of the same baseless claims to more than 300,000 followers” at Facebook. Jett made sure her report also went to msn.com and The Boston Globe.

 


This is one example of the censorship underway with much, much more to follow.  What was once done under the cover of omission is now done openly and brazenly, cheered on by those who, in an act of bad faith, claim to be upholders of the First Amendment and the importance of free debate in a democracy. We are quickly slipping into an unreal totalitarian social order.

Which brings me to the recent work of Glenn Greenwald and Matt Taibbi, both of whom have strongly and rightly decried this censorship. As I understand their arguments, they go like this.

First, the corporate media have today divided up the territory and speak only to their own audiences in echo chambers: liberal to liberals (read: the “allegedly” liberal Democratic Party), such as The New York Times, NBC, etc., and conservative to conservatives (read” the “allegedly” conservative Donald Trump), such as Fox News, Breitbart, etc.

They have abandoned old school journalism that, despite its shortcomings, involved objectivity and the reporting of disparate facts and perspectives, but within limits. Since the digitization of news, their new business models are geared to these separate audiences since they are highly lucrative choices. It’s business-driven since electronic media have replaced paper as advertising revenues have shifted and people’s ability to focus on complicated issues has diminished drastically.

Old school journalism is suffering as a result and thus writers such as Greenwald and Taibbi and Chris Hedges (who interviewed Taibbi and concurs) have taken their work to the internet to escape such restrictive categories and the accompanying censorship.

Secondly, the great call for censorship is not something the Silicon Valley companies want because they want more people using their media since it means more money for them, but they are being pressured to do it by the traditional old school media, such as The New York Times, who now employ “tattletales and censors,” people who are power-hungry jerks, to sniff out dissenting voices that they can recommend should be banned.

Greenwald says,

    They do it in part for power: to ensure nobody but they can control the flow of information. They do it partly for ideology and out of hubris: the belief that their worldview is so indisputably right that all dissent is inherently dangerous ‘disinformation.’”


Thus, the old school print and television media are not on the same page as Facebook, Twitter, etc. but have opposing agendas.

In short, these shifts and the censorship are about money and power within the media world as the business has been transformed by the digital revolution.

I think this is a half-truth that conceals a larger issue. The censorship is not being driven by power-hungry reporters at the Times or CNN or any media outlet. All these media and their employees are but the outer layer of the onion, the means by which messages are sent and people controlled.

These companies and their employees do what they are told, whether explicitly or implicitly, for they know it is in their financial interest to do so.  If they do not play their part in this twisted and intricate propaganda game, they will suffer. They will be eliminated, as are pesky individuals who dare peel the onion to its core.

For each media company is one part of a large interconnected intelligence apparatus – a system, a complex – whose purpose is power, wealth, and domination for the very few at the expense of the many.  The CIA and media as parts of the same criminal conspiracy.

 


To argue that the Silicon valley companies do not want to censor but are being pressured by the legacy corporate media does not make sense.  These companies are deeply connected to U.S. intelligence agencies, as are the NY Times, CNN, NBC, etc.  They too are part of what was once called Operation Mockingbird, the CIA’s program to control, use, and infiltrate the media.  Only the most naïve would think that such a program does not exist today.

In Surveillance Valley, investigative reporter Yasha Levine documents how Silicon Valley tech companies like Facebook, Amazon, and Google are tied to the military-industrial-intelligence-media complex in surveillance and censorship; how the Internet was created by the Pentagon; and even how these shadowy players are deeply involved in the so-called privacy movement that developed after Edward Snowden’s revelations.

Like Valentine, and in very detailed ways, Levine shows how the military-industrial-intelligence-digital-media complex is part of the same criminal conspiracy as is the traditional media with their CIA overlords. It is one club.

Many people, however, might find this hard to believe because it bursts so many bubbles, including the one that claims that these tech companies are pressured into censorship by the likes of The New York Times, etc.  The truth is the Internet was a military and intelligence tool from the very beginning and it is not the traditional corporate media that gives it its marching orders.

That being so, it is not the owners of the corporate media or their employees who are the ultimate controllers behind the current vast crackdown on dissent, but the intelligence agencies who control the mainstream media and the Silicon Valley monopolies such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.  All these media companies are but the outer layer of the onion, the means by which messages are sent and people controlled.

 



But for whom do these intelligence agencies work? Not for themselves.

They work for their overlords, the super wealthy people, the banks, financial institutions, and corporations that own the United States and always have. In a simple twist of fate, such super wealthy naturally own the media corporations that are essential to their control of the majority of the world’s wealth through the stories they tell.

It is a symbiotic relationship.

As FDR put it bluntly in 1933, this coterie of wealthy forces is the “financial element in the larger centers [that] has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson.” Their wealth and power has increased exponentially since then, and their connected tentacles have further spread to create what is an international deep state that involves such entities as the IMF, the World Bank, the World Economic Forum, those who meet yearly at Davos, etc.

They are the international overlords who are pushing hard to move the world toward a global dictatorship.

As is well known, or should be, the CIA was the creation of Wall St. and serves the interests of the wealthy owners. Peter Dale Scott, in The State, the Deep State, and the Wall Street Overworld, says of Allen Dulles, the nefarious longest-running Director of the CIA and Wall St. lawyer for Sullivan and Cromwell:

    There seems to be little difference in Allen Dulles’s influence whether he was a Wall Street lawyer or a CIA director.”

It was Dulles, long connected to Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, international corporations, and a friend of Nazi agents and scientists, who was tasked with drawing up proposals for the CIA. He was ably assisted by five Wall St. bankers or investors, including the aforementioned Frank Wisner who later, as a CIA officer, said his “Mighty Wurlitzer” was “capable of playing any propaganda tune he desired.”

This he did by recruiting intellectuals, writers, reporters, labor organizations, and the mainstream corporate media, etc. to propagate the CIA’s messages.

 


Greenwald, Taibbi, and Hedges are correct up to a point, but they stop short.  Their critique of old school journalism à la Edward Herman’s and Noam Chomsky’s Manufacturing of Consent model, while true as far as it goes, fails to pin the tail on the real donkey.  Like old school journalists who knew implicitly how far they could go, these guys know it too, as if there is an invisible electronic gate that keeps them from wandering into dangerous territory.

The censorship of Robert Kennedy, Jr. is an exemplary case.  His banishment from Instagram and the ridicule the mainstream media have heaped upon him for years is not simply because he raises deeply informed questions about vaccines, Bill Gates, the pharmaceutical companies, etc. His critiques suggest something far more dangerous is afoot: the demise of democracy and the rise of a totalitarian order that involves total surveillance, control, eugenics, etc. by the wealthy led by their intelligence propagandists.

To call him a super spreader of hoaxes and a conspiracy theorist is aimed at not only silencing him on specific medical issues, but to silence his powerful and articulate voice on all issues. To give thoughtful consideration to his deeply informed scientific thinking concerning vaccines, the World Health Organization, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, etc., is to open a can of worms that the powerful want shut tight.

This is because RFK, Jr. is also a severe critic of the enormous power of the CIA and its propaganda that goes back so many decades and was used to cover up the national security state’s assassination of both his father and his uncle.

It is why his wonderful recent book, American Values: Lessons I Learned from My Family, that contains not one word about vaccines, was shunned by mainstream book reviewers; for the picture he paints fiercely indicts the CIA in multiple ways while also indicting the mass media that have been its mouthpieces.

These worms must be kept in the can, just as the power of the international overlords represented by the World Health Organization and the World Economic Forum with its Great Reset must be.  They must be dismissed as crackpot conspiracy theories not worthy of debate or exposure.

Robert Kennedy, Jr., by name and dedication to truth seeking, conjures up his father’s ghost, the last politician who, because of his vast support across racial and class divides, could have united the country and tamed the power of the CIA to control the narrative that has allowed for the plundering of the world and the country for the wealthy overlords.

So they killed him.

 



There is a reason Noam Chomsky is an exemplar for Hedges, Greenwald, and Taibbi.  He controls the can opener for so many. He has set the parameters for what is considered acceptable to be considered a serious journalist or intellectual.  The assassinations of the Kennedys, 9/11, or a questioning of the official Covid-19 story are not among them, and so they are eschewed.

To denounce censorship, as they have done, is admirable. But now Greenwald, Taibbi, and Hedges need go up to the forbidden gate with the sign that says – “This far and no further” – and jump over it.  That’s where the true stories lie.  That’s when they’ll see the worms squirm.

~ Edward Curtin is an independent writer whose work has appeared widely over many years. His website is edwardcurtin.com and his new book is Seeking Truth in a Country of Lies.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Former German military officer view on US-Ukraine & Russia relations


I met Alina Lipp (from Germany) at a conference in Crimea last year.  We both spoke at the event.  She works on environmental issues with a key focus on climate crisis.  Her parents are German and Russian so she has a much broader view of the so-called 'Russian problem'. She makes videos and I am happy to share this one. (Has English sub-titles) Bruce

 

Wolfgang Effenberger is a former officer of the German Bundeswehr and got insights into the General Defense Plan of NATO. 

In 2020 he published his insider information in his book "Schwarzbuch EU & NATO" and warns the public about the secret goals of the European Union and NATO. 

In this interview he talks about the totally planned 2014 coup in Ukraine that was implemented under the Obama - Biden administration.

How 5G Changes Everything: Astronomy, Human & Insect Impacts, and Crowded Orbits

 


Watch the latest video from the Global Network which focuses on the impacts of the 5G network, it's satellites, earth-based stations, antennas and military applications.

The video is produced by Will Griffin who is a GN board member and Iraq & Afghanistan war veteran.

 



80,000 satellites have been approved by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) to be launched in the next 5-10 years, contributing to many already-existing concerns: space debris, ozone depletion, toxic launch pollution, radiation, environmental impacts to birds, bees, insects, humans and more.

Learn about the international 5G campaign:  https://www.5gspaceappeal.org/

Thank you for watching. Please follow and help support the Global Network.

Monday, February 22, 2021

Pepe Escobar: 'US-NATO will not leave Afghanistan'

 

View of the starry sky above the ancient city of Jiaohe in Turpan, northwest China's Xinjiang Uigur Autonomous Region, 22 July 2015. China's New Silk Road, also known as the 'One Belt One Road Initiative,' includes road, rail, oil and gas pipelines, ports and other infrastructure projects. Photo: AFP/Imaginechina

 

The art of being a spectacularly misguided oracle
If you doubt anyone could match Zbigniew Brzezinski's failure to understand Eurasia, consider Robert Kagan

 

by Pepe Escobar 

The late Dr. Zbig “Grand Chessboard” Brzezinski for some time dispensed wisdom as an oracle of US foreign policy, side by side with the perennial Henry Kissinger – who, in vast swathes of the Global South, is regarded as nothing but a war criminal.

Brzezinski never achieved the same notoriety. At best he claimed bragging rights for giving the USSR its own Vietnam in Afghanistan – by facilitating the internationalization of Jihad Inc., with all its dire, subsequent consequences.

Over the years, it was always amusing to follow the heights Dr. Zbig would reach with his Russophobia. But then, slowly but surely, he was forced to revise his great expectations. And finally he must have been truly horrified that his perennial Mackinder-style geopolitical fears came to pass – beyond the wildest nightmares.

Not only Washington had prevented the emergence of a “peer competitor” in Eurasia, but the competitor is now configured as a strategic partnership between Russia and China.

Dr. Zbig was not exactly versed in Chinese matters. His misreading of China may be found in his classic A Geostrategy for Eurasia published in – where else – Foreign Affairs in 1997:

Although China is emerging as a regionally dominant power, it is not likely to become a global one for a long time. The conventional wisdom that China will be the next global power is breeding paranoia outside China while fostering megalomania in China. It is far from certain that China’s explosive growth rates can be maintained for the next two decades. In fact, continued long-term growth at the current rates would require an unusually felicitous mix of national leadership, political tranquility, social discipline, high savings, massive inflows of foreign investment, and regional stability. A prolonged combination of all of these factors is unlikely.


Dr. Zbig added,

Even if China avoids serious political disruptions and sustains its economic growth for a quarter of a century — both rather big ifs — China would still be a relatively poor country. A tripling of GDP would leave China below most nations in per capita income, and a significant portion of its people would remain poor. Its standing in access to telephones, cars, computers, let alone consumer goods, would be very low.


Oh dear. Not only Beijing hit all the targets Dr. Zbig proclaimed were off limits, but the central government also eliminated poverty by the end of 2020.

The Little Helmsman Deng Xiaoping once observed, “at present, we are still a relatively poor nation. It is impossible for us to undertake many international proletarian obligations, so our contributions remain small. However, once we have accomplished the four modernizations and the national economy has expanded, our contributions to mankind, and especially to the Third World, will be greater. As a socialist country, China will always belong to the Third World and shall never seek hegemony.”

What Deng described then as the Third World – a Cold War-era derogatory terminology – is now the Global South. And the Global South is essentially the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) on steroids, as in the Spirit of Bandung in 1955 remixed to the Eurasian Century.

 


Cold Warrior Dr. Zbig was obviously not a Daoist monk – so he could never abandon the self to enter the Dao, the most secret of all mysteries.

Had he been alive to witness the dawn of the Year of the Metal Ox, he might have noticed how China, expanding on Deng’s insights, is de facto applying practical lessons derived from Daoist correlative cosmology: life as a system of interacting opposites, engaging with each other in constant change and evolution, moving in cycles and feedback loops, always mathematically hard to predict with exactitude.

A practical example of simultaneously opening and closing is the dialectical approach of Beijing’s new “dual circulation” development strategy. It’s quite dynamic, relying on checks and balances between increase of domestic consumption and external trade/investments (the New Silk Roads).

 


Peace is Forever War

Now let’s move to another oracle, a self-described expert of what in the Beltway is known as the “Greater Middle East”: Robert Kagan, co-founder of PNAC, certified warmongering neo-con, and one-half of the famous Kaganate of Nulands – as the joke went across Eurasia – side by side with his wife, notorious Maidan cookie distributor Victoria “F**k the EU” Nuland, who’s about to re-enter government as part of the Biden-Harris administration.

Kagan is back pontificating in – where else – Foreign Affairs, which published his latest superpower manifesto. That’s where we find this absolute pearl:

That Americans refer to the relatively low-cost military involvements in Afghanistan and Iraq as “forever wars” is just the latest example of their intolerance for the messy and unending business of preserving a general peace and acting to forestall threats. In both cases, Americans had one foot out the door the moment they entered, which hampered their ability to gain control of difficult situations.

So let’s get this straight. The multi-trillion dollar Forever Wars are “relatively low-cost”; tell that to the multitudes suffering the Via Crucis of US crumbling infrastructure and appalling standards in health and education. If you don’t support the Forever Wars – absolutely necessary to preserve the “liberal world order” – you are “intolerant”.

“Preserving a general peace” does not even qualify as a joke, coming from someone absolutely clueless about realities on the ground. As for what the Beltway defines as “vibrant civil society” in Afghanistan, that in reality revolves around millennia-old tribal custom codes: it has nothing to do with some neocon/woke crossover. Moreover, Afghanistan’s GDP – after so much American “help” – remains even lower than Saudi-bombed Yemen’s.

Exceptionalistan will not leave Afghanistan. A deadline of May 1st was negotiated in Doha last year for the US/NATO to remove all troops. That’s not gonna happen.

The spin is already turbocharged: the Deep State handlers of Joe “Crash Test Dummy” Biden will not respect the deadline. Everyone familiar with the New Great Game on steroids across Eurasia knows why: a strategic lily pad must be maintained at the intersection of Central and South Asia to help closely monitor – what else – Brzezinski’s worst nightmare: the Russia-China strategic partnership.

As it stands we have 2,500 Pentagon + 7,000 NATO troops + a whole lot of “contractors” in Afghanistan. The spin is that they can’t leave because the Taliban – which de facto control from 52% to as much as 70% of the whole tribal territory – will take over.

To see, in detail, how this whole sorry saga started, non-oracle skeptics could do worse than check Volume 3 of my Asia Times archives: Forever Wars: Afghanistan-Iraq, part 1 (2001-2004) . Part 2 will be out soon. Here they will find how the multi-trillion dollar Forever Wars – so essential to “preserve the peace” – actually developed on the ground, in total contrast to the official imperial narrative influenced, and defended, by Kagan.

With oracles like these, the US definitely does not need enemies.

No to NATO & Separatism in Cyprus!


Located in the center of the region that is the target of imperialism in the Eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus acts as an unsinkable aircraft carrier for NATO.

The Cypriots got rid of the British colonialism in 1960 and established the Republic of Cyprus, which also took part in the establishment of the Non-Aligned Movement.

The state with a constitutional structure in which Greek-speaking and Turkish-speaking Cypriots’ jointly rule, could only survive for three years because of the imperialists’ instigation on the island.

Due to the danger of a problem between countries that have an interest in Cyprus, such as Turkey and Greece in the middle of the Cold War, and also the risk of the closure of British bases on the island, the United States made sides agree on a partition plan of the island at the meeting of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs held in Lisbon in 1971.

According to this plan, the US-backed junta which was already present in Greece would organize a coup in Cyprus, then Turkey would carry out military operations using the pretext of “restoring the constitutional order on the island” and after all these, the separatist and segregationist “federation” thesis would be put forward against the constitutional unitary structure that was seen as a threat to NATO’s military presence on the island.

This plan was completed fully in 1974, and since then the federation, confederation and two-state theses representing the status quo on the island are being talked under the umbrella of the United Nations, with the support of NATO, the European Union and some so-called progressive formations, despite the overwhelming majority of Cypriots who want to protect their unitary state.

As a result of all, on the island in West Asia and North Africa’s most valuable point, the United Kingdom, Turkey and Greece, meaning three NATO armies are deployed.

After the new developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus has come to the attention of other NATO countries with imperialist strategic aims in the region, and France gained the right to use naval and air bases on the island as a result of the pious support it gave to the Republic of Cyprus during this period.

Finally, the United States, which is already known to be using the British bases on the island, is establishing the Cyprus Center for Land, Open-seas, and Port Security (CYCLOPS) and situating a Rapid Response Unit on the island, where it had been applying an arms embargo until recently.

As Union of Cypriots, we once again call on the progressive forces in our country and the world as we continue our vanguard struggle against imperialist ambitions on our homeland.

The unitary Republic of Cyprus with full territorial integrity is the only way to reach a Cyprus free of foreign military bases. The liberation of Cyprus and Cypriots from exploitation is also the only way of liberation of all West Asia and North Africa from imperialism.

We call on all the world’s progressives and anti-imperialists to break away from the fronts that defend separatist and segregationist theses such as federation or two-state in Cyprus, and support the forces struggling for a fully independent Cyprus before it is too late.

Cyprus for Cypriots!
Union of Cypriots

Sunday, February 21, 2021

'Hunger is an instrument of war'


 

 “…food production must once again be an issue of sustainability, taking care of the earth and the human right to food must be an inalienable right.” - Dr. Vandana Shiva 

Trained as a physicist, Vandana Shiva is an organic farmer, social activist and renowned environmentalist. She warns that global hunger is a product of “intensive chemical farming” which turns biodiverse land into monocultures that are too costly for farmers to sustain and produces too little nutritional crops for local consumption. 

In this 2009 interview, Vandana talks about third world countries like her native India where agricultural communities are surrounded by fertile farmland and highly favorable growing conditions yet struggle with high rates of childhood hunger. Much of the food grown by indigenous farmers are exported to richer countries. 

Lately Vandana has become very critical of Bill Gates for buying up farm land all over the world.

 

Sunday song