Predatory US Veils ‘Disaster Capitalism’ w/ ‘War on Terror'
US drones are destroying many “collateral damage” civilians in Yemen and thus inspiring more and more Yemenis to bitterly and momentously side with Al-Qaeda against the US. Declares Glenn Greenwald, the droning is not only amoral but strategically STUPID.
Greenwald also points out how the extremely brutal and repressive Bahrain regime is so rigorously supported by the US and its non-democratic Saudi allies, while at the same time the US champions or postures to champion (and propagandizes it’s championing of) the democratic rights of the Syrian citizens under Assad.
Such hypocrisy and crony-based double standards have lost credibility and good will for the US throughout the Middle East. The vast number of arms supplied by the US to such crony Middle East oppressive regimes adds to the anti-Americanism.
Pepe Escobar has this to say about American-provided arms to Qatar, thereafter bestowed upon terrorist mercenaries and jihadists:
Qatar unloaded tons of weapons "like candy" (according to a US arms dealer) in "liberated" Libya. Only after the Benghazi blowback did the Pentagon and the State Department wake up to the fact that weaponizing the Syrian rebels may be, well, the road to more blowback. Translation: Qatar will keep unloading tons of weapons in Syria. ...".
Escobar continues on about the US and NATO empowerment of vicious foreign jihadists pummeling the Syrian army for an ulterior imperialist agenda. The hapless and doomed citizens of Syria are now caught in a merciless cross-fire, US pro-humanitarian bullshit, notwithstanding:
...What the NATOGCC war has already accomplished is one objective - very similar, by the way, to Iraq in 2003; it has completely torn the fragile Syrian social fabric to shreds.
That is disaster capitalism in action, phase I; the terrain is already prepared for a profitable "reconstruction" of Syria once a pliable, pro-Western turbo-capitalism government is installed.
Yet in parallel, blowback also works its mysterious ways; millions of Syrians who initially supported the idea of a pro-democracy movement - from the business classes in Damascus to traders in Aleppo - now have swelled the government support base as a counterpunch against the gruesome ethnic-religious cleansing promoted by the "rebels" of the al-Nusrah kind.
Regarding American double standards and hypocrisy, Ismail Salami explores the US cynical categorization and qualification of terrorists into “good” and “bad” groups in the Middle East. Apparently the pragmatism of “lesser evilism” has travelled to this dimension of US militaristic realpolitik and consequently brazen corporate media propaganda.
To the dismay and disappointment of many, US State Department decided in September to remove the MKO from the terror lists.
US State Department said its decision to delist the group was made because the group has not committed any terrorist acts for a decade and brashly whitewashed the fact that the group has been to all intents and purposes instrumental in carrying out nuclear assassinations in the last few years in Iran. Although the group has never officially assumed responsibility for the assassinations (which is quite natural), there is solid evidence suggesting that it has been complicit in these terrorist acts.
Just 24 hours after Israeli military chief warned of unnatural events for Iran, Iranian nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan was assassinated in broad daylight. It soon transpired that it had been a joint Mossad-MKO operation.
The MKO has reportedly assassinated over 12,000 Iranian citizens, seven American citizens, and tens of thousands of Iraqi nationals.
Anyhow, the dichotomization of 'terrorists' into good and bad is far uglier than any form of apartheid.
A comparatively similar story is being repeated in Syria. Washington has branded the Qatar-funded Al-Nusra Front as a terrorist organization. But why? They are fighting against the government of Bashar al-Assad together with other militants in Syria who are chiefly composed of foreign mercenaries. The former are considered terrorists simply because they to a large extent fly in the face of Washington's policies in Syria. So, it is Washington or the US-led West which decides who is a terrorist and who is not.
The US qualifying of terrorists into “good” and “bad” categories is Orwellianly hypocritical since terrorism is the use of violence for intimidation and coercion, and that is the long-time ferocious MO of the United States with its "shock and awe" militarism beyond the p.r. veil of "spreading democracy" and "humanitarian intervention" when the real goal is illegitimate regime change.
Salami reminds us of what came of the US’s creation of and relationship with the dangerous Al Qaeda:
Let us not forget that the notorious al Qaeda which is sowing seeds of blind extremism and religious sectarianism in the world was founded and financially supported in the seventies by Washington and CIA in an apparent bid to fight the Soviets. Robin Cook laments the creation of al Qaeda and says, "Bin Laden was, though, a product of a monumental miscalculation by western security agencies. Throughout the 80s he was armed by the CIA and funded by the Saudis to wage jihad against the Russian occupation of Afghanistan. Al-Qaida, literally "the database", was originally the computer file of the thousands of mujahideen who were recruited and trained with help from the CIA to defeat the Russians. Inexplicably, and with disastrous consequences, it never appears to have occurred to Washington that once Russia was out of the way, Bin Laden's organization would turn its attention to the west."
This CIA-created Frankenstein's monster has not changed but has grown up monstrously.
And now, in Libya and Syria, history is repeating itself as the US enables ruthless terrorist militias, death squads, to bring about illegitimate regime change (with little concern for mass civilian deaths or displacement in its 'ends justifies the means' amoral willfulness) and naively -- STUPIDLY -- ignores the inevitability of blowback to its imperial self from these temporarily useful US/NATO-empowered foreign terrorists.
Francis A. Boyle writes of the US and its “unlimited imperialism” which he compares to that of “Alexander, Rome, Napoleon and Hitler.”
By shamelessly exploiting the terrible tragedy of 11 September 2001, the Bush Jr. administration set forth to steal a hydrocarbon empire from the Muslim states and peoples living in Central Asia and the Persian Gulf and Africa under the bogus pretexts of (1) fighting a war against international terrorism; and/or (2) eliminating weapons of mass destruction; and/or (3) the promotion of democracy; and/or (4) self-styled “humanitarian intervention”/responsibility to protect. Only this time the geopolitical stakes are infinitely greater than they were a century ago: control and domination of two-thirds of the world’s hydrocarbon resources and thus the very fundament and energizer of the global economic system – oil and gas. The Bush Jr./ Obama administrations have already targeted the remaining hydrocarbon reserves of Africa, Latin America, and Southeast Asia for further conquest or domination, together with the strategic choke-points at sea and on land required for their transportation. In this regard, the Bush Jr. administration announced the establishment of the U.S. Pentagon’s Africa Command (AFRICOM) in order to better control, dominate, and exploit both the natural resources and the variegated peoples of the continent of Africa, the very cradle of our human species. Libya and the Libyans became the first victims to succumb to AFRICOM under the Obama administration. They will not be the last.
This current bout of U.S. imperialism is what Hans Morgenthau denominated “unlimited imperialism” in his seminal work Politics Among Nations (4th ed. 1968, at 52-53):
“The outstanding historic examples of unlimited imperialism are the expansionist policies of Alexander the Great, Rome, the Arabs in the seventh and eighth centuries, Napoleon I, and Hitler. They all have in common an urge toward expansion which knows no rational limits, feeds on its own successes and, if not stopped by a superior force, will go on to the confines of the political world. This urge will not be satisfied so long as there remains anywhere a possible object of domination--a politically organized group of men which by its very independence challenges the conqueror’s lust for power. It is, as we shall see, exactly the lack of moderation, the aspiration to conquer all that lends itself to conquest, characteristic of unlimited imperialism, which in the past has been the undoing of the imperialistic policies of this kind... “
It is the Unlimited Imperialists along the lines of Alexander, Rome, Napoleon and Hitler who are now in charge of conducting American foreign policy. The factual circumstances surrounding the outbreaks of both the First World War and the Second World War currently hover like twin Swords of Damocles over the heads of all humanity.
Bill Van Auken in an article entitled “US retools terror war in scramble for Africa” explores this “unlimited imperialism” as it bulldozes its way into and over Africa in the guise of enabling Africa to “battle extremists”. Apparently there is a reassignment of the 2nd Brigade, First Infantry Division (the “Dagger Brigade”) of approximately 3,500 troops to Africa which the Pentagon has scheduled for 104 separate missions beginning in March involving 35 countries across Africa. Van Auken:
The re-assignment of this brigade is only part of an effort to beef up the Pentagon’s Africa Command, or AFRICOM, which was created in 2007 but remains headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, with, until now, no African government willing to provide it with a base of operations on the continent.
Since then, AFRICOM has drawn blood in Libya, where it coordinated the US-NATO war for regime-change that toppled the government of Col. Muammar Gaddafi in October of last year, It has deployed over 100 troops in central Africa, supposedly to track down the guerrillas of the Lord’s Resistance Army, and provided training to a number of countries’ armies, which Washington hopes to use as proxy forces, or cannon fodder, in pursuit of US interests.
[I hope you caught that last sentence. “... which Washington hopes to use as proxy forces, OR CANNON FODDER, in pursuit of US interests.”]
In other words, any number of US military operations, ranging from disaster relief to so-called humanitarian assistance, as well as training African troops, all serve as a means of “shaping the environment,” i.e., preparing the ground for direct US armed intervention.
Van Auken quotes J. Peter Pham, a permanent member of the advisory board of AFRICOM, on our involvement in Africa:
“protecting access to hydrocarbons and other strategic resources which Africa has in abundance, a task which includes ensuring against the vulnerability of those natural riches and ensuring that no other interested third parties, such as China, India, Japan, or Russia, obtain monopolies or preferential treatment.”
Van Auken points out how China’s trade with Africa has proliferated. In 2000 it was at $11 billion but by 2011 it topped $160 billion and promises to reach $200 billion this year. The US, discloses Van Auken, is counting on West Africa for 25% of its petroleum imports along with important minerals and other raw materials. The competition with China and other non-allies in the quest for hydrocarbons by the US and NATO in Africa, Van Auken concludes, will be as mercilessly violent as it has been in the Middle East.
“The preparations for predatory acts of militarism in Africa, however, are being made under the pretext of combating “terrorism” and the threat of “extremism” on the continent.
AFRICOM’s commander, Gen. Carter Ham, has made a series of speeches in both the US and Africa on this theme, claiming that widely disparate groups ranging from the Islamist Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb in Mali and Libya to al-Shabab in Somalia and the Boko Haram group in Nigeria are threatening to link up and coordinate their activities, posing a serious threat to the US “homeland.” Neither he nor anyone else has presented any evidence of such collaboration between movements that have shown no ambitions outside of their own national spheres.
The Wall Street Journal earlier this month put forward the same thesis in a front-page article entitled “Terror Fight shifts to Africa.” According to the Journal, the Obama administration “is considering asking Congress to approve expanded authority” to carry out military actions against alleged terrorists in Africa. Such an authorization of the use of military force was the basis for the more than decade-long wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This new authorization “would be aimed at allowing US military operations in Mali, Nigeria, Libya and possibly other countries where militants have loose or nonexistent ties to al Qaeda’s Pakistan headquarters,” administration officials told the Journal.
In reality, while exploiting Al Qaeda—and organizations with “loose or nonexistent ties” to it—as a pretext for US militarist intervention, Washington has armed and directly supported Al Qaeda-linked elements, first in Libya and now in Syria, as proxy forces in its wars for regime-change.
The buildup of AFRICOM and the preparation of new wars on the continent make clear that the interventions in Libya and Syria are only the beginning of what amounts to a global offensive aimed at re-dividing and re-colonizing much of the world. This eruption of American militarism, the byproduct of the historic crisis of US and world capitalism, goes hand in hand with ever more savage attacks on the social conditions and democratic rights of the working class at home.
Will Americans ever seriously connect the dots to the grotesque amorality and illegality of US militarism and its devastating impact on the world’s populations as well as the impoverishment of -- and susceptibility to a much provoked blowback upon -- our own?