Fifty Years of Imperial Wars: Results and Perspectives

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Introduction

Over the past 50 years the US and European powers have engaged in countless imperial wars throughout the world. The drive for world supremacy has been clothed in the rhetoric of “world leadership”, the consequences have been devastating for the peoples targeted.  The biggest, longest and most numerous wars have been carried out by the United States.  Presidents from both parties direct and preside over this quest for world power.  The ideology which informs imperialism varies from “anti-communism”in the past to “antiterrorism”today.

Washington’s drive for world domination has used and combined many forms of warfare, including military invasions and occupations; proxy mercenary armies and military coups; financing political parties, NGO’s and street mobs to overthrow  duly constituted governments. The driving forces in the imperial state , behind the  quest for world power, vary with the geographic location and social economic composition of the targeted countries.

What is clear from an analysis of US empire building over the last half century is the relative decline of economic interests, and the rise of politico-military considerations.  In part this is because of the demise of the collectivist regimes (the USSR and Eastern Europe) and the conversion of China and the leftist  Asian, African and Latin American regimes to capitalism.  The decline of economic forces as the driving force of imperialism is a result of the advent of global neoliberalism.  Most US and EU multi-nationals are not threatened by nationalizations or expropriations, which might trigger imperial state  political intervention.

In fact, MNC are invited to invest,trade and exploit natural resources even by post-neoliberal regimes .  Economic interests come into play in formulating imperial state policies, if and when nationalist regimes emerge and challenge US MNC as is the case in Venezuela under President Chavez.

The key to US empire building over the past half-century is found in the political, military and ideological power configurations which have come to control the levers of the imperial state.  The recent history of US imperial wars has demonstrated that strategic military priorities – military bases, budgets and bureaucracy – have expanded far beyond any localized economic interests of MNC.  Moreover, the vast expenditures and long term and expensive military interventions of the US imperial state in the Middle East has been at the  behest of Israel.  The take-over of strategic political positions in the Executive branch and Congress by the powerful Zionist power configuration within the US has reinforced the centrality of military over economic interests

The ‘privatization’ of imperial wars – the vast growth and use of mercenaries contracted by the Pentagon- has led to the vast pillage of tens of billions of dollars from the US Treasury.  Large scale corporations which supply mercenary military combatants have become a very ‘influential’ force shaping the nature and consequences of US empire building.

Military strategists, defenders of Israeli colonial interests in the Middle East, mercenary military and intelligence corporations are central actors in the imperial state and it is their decision-making influence which explains why US imperial wars do not result in a politically stable, economic prosperous empire.  Instead their policies have resulted in unstable, ravaged economies, in perpetual rebellion..

We will proceed by identifying the changing areas and regions of US empire building from the mid 1970’s to the present.  We then examine the methods, driving forces and outcomes of imperial expansion.  We will then turn to describe the current ‘geo-political map of empire building and the varied nature of the anti-imperialist resistance.  We will conclude by examining the why and how of empire building and more particularly, the consequences, and results of a half century of US imperial expansion.

Imperialism in the post Vietnam Period:  Proxy Wars in Central America, Afghanistan and Southern Africa

The US imperialist defeat in Indo-China marks the end of one phase of empire building and the beginning of another:  a shift from territorial invasions to proxy wars.  Hostile domestic opinion precluded large scale ground wars.  Beginning during the presidencies of Gerald Ford and James Carter, the US imperialist state increasingly relied on proxy clients.  It recruited, financed and armed proxy military forces to destroy a variety of nationalist and social revolutionary regimes and movements in three continents.  Washington financed and armed extremist Islamic forces world-wide to invade and destroy the secular, modernizing, Soviet backed regime in Afghanistan, with logistical support from the Pakistan military and intelligence agencies, and financial backing from Saudi Arabia.

The second proxy intervention was in Southern Africa, where the US imperial state financed and armed proxy forces against anti-imperialist regimes in Angola and Mozambique, in alliance with South Africa.

The third proxy intervention took place in Central America, where the US financed, armed and trained murderous death squad regimes in Nicaragua, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to decimate popular movements and armed insurgencies resulting in over 300,000 civilian deaths.

The US imperial state’s ‘proxy strategy’ extended to South America:  CIA and Pentagon backed military coups took place in Uruguay (General Alvarez), Chile (General

Pinochet) Argentina (General Videla), Bolivia (General Banzer) and Peru (General Morales). Empire building by proxy, was largely at the behest of US MNC which were the principal actors in setting priorities in the imperial state throughout this period.

Accompanying proxy wars, were direct military invasions:  the tiny island of Grenada (1983) and Panama (1989) under Presidents’ Reagan and Bush, Sr.  Easy targets, with few casualties and low cost military expenditures:  dress rehearsals for re-launching major military operations in the near future.

What is striking about the ‘proxy wars’ are the mixed results.The outcomes in Central America, Afghanistan and Africa did not lead to prosperous neo-colonies or prove lucrative to US multi-national corporations. In contrast the proxy coups in South America led to large scale privatization and profits for US MNC.

The Afghan proxy war led to the rise and consolidation of the Taliban “Islamic regime” which opposed both Soviet influence and US imperial expansion.  The rise and consolidation of Islamic nationalism in turn challenged US allies in South Asia and the Gulf region and subsequently led to a US military invasion in 2001 and a prolonged (15 year) war (which has yet to conclude), and most probably to a military retreat and defeat.  The main economic beneficiaries were Afghan political clients, US mercenary military “contractors”, military procurement officers and civilian colonial administrators who pillaged hundreds of billions from the US Treasury in illegal and fraudulent transactions.

Pillage of the US Treasury in no way benefited the non-military MNC’s.  In fact the war and resistance movement undermined  any large scale, long-term entry of US private capital in Afghanistan and adjoining border regions of Pakistan.

The proxy war in Southern Africa devastated the local economies, especially the domestic agricultural economy, uprooted millions of laborers and farmers and curtailed US corporate oil  penetration for over two decades.  The ‘positive’ outcome was the deradicalization of the former revolutionary nationalist elite.  However, the political conversion of the Southern African “revolutionaries” to neo-liberalism did not benefit the US MNC as much as the rulers turned kleptocratic oligarchs who organized patrimonial regimes in association  with a diversified collection of MNC, especially from Asia and Europe.

The proxy wars in Central America had mixed results.  In Nicaragua the Sandinista revolution defeated the US-Israeli backed Somoza regime but immediately confronted a US financed, armed and trained counter-revolutionary mercenary army (the “Contras”) based in Honduras.  The US war destroyed, many of the progressive economic projects,undemined the economy and eventually led to an electoral victory by the US backed political client  Violeta Chamorro. Two decades later the US proxies were defeated by a de-radicalized Sandinista led political coalition.

In El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, the US proxy wars led to the consolidation of client regimes presiding over the destruction of the productive economy,and the flight of millions of war refugees to the United States.  US imperial dominance eroded the bases for a productive labor market which spawned the growth of murderous drug gangs.

In summary, the US proxy wars succeeded, in most, cases in preventing the rise of nationalist-leftist regimes, but also led to the destructive of the economic and political bases of a stable and prosperous empire of neo-colonies.

US Imperialism in Latin America:  Changing Structure, External and Internal Contingencies, Shifting Priorities and Global Constraints.

To understand the operations,  structure and performance of US imperialism in Latin America, it is necessary to recognize the specific constellation of competing forces which shaped imperial state policies.  Unlike the Middle East where the militarist-Zionist faction has established hegemony, in Latin America the MNC have played a leading role in directing imperial state policy.  In Latin America, the militarists played a lesser role, constrained by (1)the power of the MNC, (2) the shifts in political power in Latin America from right to center-left (3) the impact of economic crises and the commodity boom.

In contrast to the Middle East, the Zionist power configuration has little influence over imperial state policy, as Israel’s interests are focused on the Middle East and, with the possible exception of Argentina, Latin America is not a priority.

For over a century and a half, the US MNC and banks dominated and dictated US imperial policy toward Latin America.  The US armed forces and CIA were instruments of economic imperialism via direct intervention (invasions), proxy ‘military coups’, or a combination of both.

US imperial economic power in Latin America ‘peaked’ between 1975-1999.  Vassal states and client rulers were imposed via proxy military coups, direct military invasions (Dominican Republic ,Panama and Grenada) and military-civilian controlled elections.

The results were the dismantling of the welfare state and the imposition of neo-liberal policies.  The MNC led imperial state and its international financial appendages (IMF, WB, IDB) privatized lucrative strategic economic sectors, dominated trade and projected a regional integration scheme which would codify US imperial dominance.

Imperial economic expansion in Latin America was not simply a result of the internal dynamics and structures of the MNC but depended on (1) the receptivity of the ‘host’ country or more precisely the internal correlation of class forces in Latin America which in turn revolved around (2) the performance of the economy – its growth or susceptibility to crises.

Latin America demonstrates that contingencies such as the demise of client regimes and collaborator classes can have a profound negative impact on the dynamics of imperialism, undermining the power of the imperial state and reversing the economic advance of the MNC.

The advance of US economic imperialism during the 1975-2000 period was manifest in the adoption of neo-liberal policies, the pillage of national resources, the increase of illicit debts and the overseas transfer of billions of dollars However, the concentration of wealth and property, precipitated a deep socio-economic crises throughout the region which eventually led to the overthrow or ouster of the imperial collaborators in Ecuador, Bolivia, Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay and Nicaragua.  Powerful anti-imperialist social movements especially in the countryside emerged in Brazil and the Andean countries.

Urban unemployed workers  movements and public employees unions in Argentina and Uruguay spearheaded electoral changes, bringing to power center-left regimes which‘renegotiaed’ relations with the US imperial state.

US  MNC influence in Latin America waned.  They could not count on the full battery of military resources of the imperial state to intervene and re-impose neo-liberal clients because of its military priorities elsewhere:  the Middle East, South Asia and North Africa.

Unlike the past, the US MNC in Latin America lacked two essential props of power:

the full backing of the US armed forces and powerful civilian-military clients in Latin America.

The US MNC’s plan for US centered integration was  rejected by the center-left regimes.  The imperial state turned to bilateral free trade agreements with Mexico, Chile,

Colombia, Panama and Peru.  As a result of the economic crises and collapse of most Latin American economies, “neo-liberalism” ,the ideology of imperial economic penetration, was discredited. Neo-liberal  advocates marginalized.

Changes in the world economy had a profound impact on US – Latin America trade and investment relations.  The dynamic growth of China and the subsequent boom in demand and the rising prices of commodities, led to a sharp decline of US dominance of Latin American markets.

Latin American states diversified trade, sought and gained new overseas markets, especially in China.  The increase in export revenues created greater capacity for selffinancing.  The IMF, WB and IDB, economic instruments for leveraging US financial impositions (“conditionality”), were sidelined

The US imperial state faced Latin American regimes who embraced diverse  economic options, markets and sources of financing.  With powerful domestic popular support and unified civilian-military command, Latin America moved tentatively out of the US sphere of imperialist domination.

The imperial state and its MNC , deeply influenced by their “success” in the 1990’s, responded to the decline of influence by proceeding by ‘trial and error’, in the face of the negative constraints of the 21st century.  The MNC backed policymakers in the imperial state continued to back the collapsing neo-liberal regimes, losing all credibility in Latin America.  The imperial-state failed to accommodate changes – deepening popular and center-left regime opposition to “free markets” and the deregulation of banks.  No large scale economic aid programs, like Presideny Kennedy’s effort to counter the revolutionary appeal of the Cuban revolution by promoting social reforms via the  ‘Alliance for Progress”, were fashioned to win over the center-left,probably because of budget constraints resulting from costly wars elsewhere.

The demise of neo-liberal regimes, the glue that held the different factions of the imperial state together, led to competing proposals of how to regain dominance.   The ‘militarist faction’ resorted to and revived the military coup formula for restoration:  coups were organized in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Honduras and Paraguay . . .  all were defeated, except the latter two.  The defeat of US proxies led  to the consolidation of the independent, anti-imperialist center-left regimes.Even the “success”of the US coup in Honduras resulted in a major diplomatic defeat,as every Latin American government condemned it and the US role,further isolating Washington in the region.

The defeat of the militarist strategy strengthened the political-diplomatic faction of the imperial state.  With positive overtures toward ostensibly ‘center-left regimes’, this faction gained diplomatic leverage, retained military ties and deepened the expansion of MNC in Uruguay, Brazil, Chile and Peru.  With the latter two countries the economic imperialist faction of the imperial state secured bilateral free trade agreements.

A third MNC – military faction, overlapping with the previous two, combined diplomatic-political accommodations toward Cuba, with an aggressive political destabilization strategy aimed at “regime change” (coup) in Venezuela.

The heterogeneity of imperial state factions and their competing orientations, reflects the complexity of interests engaged in empire building in Latin America and results in seemingly contradictory policies, a phenomenon less evident in the Middle East where the militarist -zionist power configuration dominates imperial policymaking.

For example the promotion of military bases and counter-insurgency operations in Colombia (a priority of the militarist faction) is accompanied by bilateral free market agreements and peace negotiations between the Santos regime and the FARC armed insurgency (a priority of the MNC faction).

Regaining imperial dominance in Argentina involves, (1) promoting the electoral fortunes of the neo-liberal governor of Buenos Aires Macri, (2) backing the pro- imperial media conglomerate , Clarin, facing legislation breaking up its monopoly (3) exploiting the death of prosecutor and CIA-Mossad collaborator, Alberto Nisman to discredit the KirchnerFernandez regime(4)backing   NewYork speculaters’ (vulture)investment fund attempting to extract  exorbitant interest payments and, with the aid of a dubious judicial ruling, blocking

Argentina’s access to financial markets

Both the militarist and MNC factions of the imperial state converge in backing a multi-pronged electoral – and coup approach, which seeks to restore a US controlled neoliberal regimes to power.

The contingencies which forestalled the recovery of imperial power over the past decade are now acting in reverse.  The drop in commodity prices has weakened post neoliberal regimes in Venezuela, Argentina and Ecuador.  The ebbing of anti-imperialist movements resulting from center-left co-optation tactics has strengthened imperial state backed right-wing movements and street demonstrators.  The decline in Chinese growth has weakened the Latin American market diversification strategies.  The internal balance of class forces has shifted to the Right, toward US backed political clients in Brazil, Argentina, Peru and Paraguay.

Theoretical Reflections on Empire Building in Latin America

US empire building in Latin America is a cyclical process, reflecting the structural shifts in political power, and the restructuring of the world economy – forces and factors which ‘override’ the  imperial state and capital’s drive to accumulate.Capital accumulation and expansion does not depend merely on the impersonal forces of “the market”because the social relations under which the “market” functions, operate under the constraints of the class struggle.

The centerpiece of imperial state activities-namely the prolonged territorial wars in the Middle East – are absent in Latin America.  The driving force of US imperial state policy is the pursuit of resources (agro-mining), labor power ( low paid autoworkers), markets (size and purchasing power of 600 million consumers).  The economic interests of the MNC are the motives for imperial expansion.

Even as, from a geo-strategic vantage point, the Caribbean, Central America as well as South America are located most proximate to the US, economic not military objectives predominate.

However, the militarist-Zionist faction in the imperial state, ignore these traditional economic motives and deliberately choose to act on other priorities – control over oil producing regions, destruction of Islamic nations or movements or simply to destroy antiimperialist adversaries.  The militarists-Zionist faction counted the “benefits” to Israel, its Middle East military supremacy, more important than the  US securing economic supremacy in Latin America.  This is clearly the case if we measure imperial priorities by state resources expended in pursuit of political goals.

Even if we take the goal of “national security”, interpreted in the broadest sense, of securing the safety of the territorial homeland of the empire, the US military assault of Islamic countries driven by accompanying Islamophobic ideology and the resulting mass killings and uprooting a millions of Islamic people, has led to “blowback”: reciprocal terrorism.  US “total wars” against civilians has provoked Islamic assaults against the citizens of the West.

Latin America countries targeted by economic imperialism are less belligerent than Middle Eastern countries targeted by US militarists.  A cost/benefits analysis would demonstrate the totally “irrational” nature of militarist strategy.  However,if we take account of the specific composition and interests that motivate particularly imperial state policymakers, there is a kind of perverse “rationality”.  The militarists defend the

“rationality” of costly and unending wars by citing the advantages of seizing the ‘gateways to oil’ and the Zionists cite their success in enhancing Israel’s regional power.

Whereas Latin America, for over a century was a priority region of imperial economic conquest, by the 21st century it lost  primacy  to the Middle East.

The Demise of the USSR and China’s conversion to Capitalism

The greatest impetus to successful US imperial expansion did not take place via proxy wars or military invasions.  Rather, the US empire achieved its greatest growth and conquest, with the aid of client political leaders, organizations and vassal states throughout the USSR, Eastern Europe, the Baltic States the Balkans and the Caucuses.  Long term, large scale US and EU political penetration and funding succeeded in overthrowing the hegemonic collectivist regimes in Russia and the USSR, and installing  vassal states. They would soon serve NATO and be incorporated in the European Union.  Bonn annexed East Germany and dominated the markets of Poland,the Czech Republic and other Central European states.  US and London bankers collaborated with Russian-Israeli gangster-oligarchs in joint ventures plundering resources, industries, real estate and pension funds.  The European Union exploited tens of millions of highly trained scientists, technicians and workers – by importing them or stripping them of their welfare benefits and labor rights and exploiting them as cheap labor reserves in their own country.

“Imperialism by invitation” hosted by the  vassal Yeltsin regime, easily appropriated Russian wealth.  The ex-Warsaw Pact military forces were incorporated into a foreign legion for US imperial wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.  Their military installations were converted into military bases and missile sites encircling Russia.

US imperial conquest of the East, created a “unipolar world” in which Washington decision-makers and strategists believed that, as the world’s supreme power, they could intervene in every region with impunity.

The scope and depth of the US world empire was enhanced by China’s embrace of capitalism and its ruler’s  invitation to US and EU MNC to enter and exploit cheap Chinese labor.  The global expansion of the US empire, led to a sense of unlimited power, encouraging its rulers’  to exercise power against any adversary or competitor.

Between 1990 and 2000,the US expanded its military bases to the borders of Russia.

US MNC expanded into China and Indo-China.  US backed client regimes throughout Latin America dismantled the national economies, privatizing and denationalizing over five thousand lucrative strategic firms.  Every sector was affected- natural resources, transport, telecommunications and finance.

The US proceeded throughout the 1990’s to expand via political penetration and military force.  President George H. W. Bush launched a war against Iraq.  Clinton bombed

Yugoslavia and Germany and the EU joined the US in dividing Yugoslavia into ‘mini states’

The Pivotel Year 2000:  the Pinnacle and Decline of Empire

The very rapid and extensive imperial expansion, between 1989-1999, the easy conquests and the accompanying plunder, created the conditions for the decline of the US empire.

The pillage and impoverishment of Russia led to the rise of a new leadership under

President Putin intent on reconstructing the state and economy and ending vassalage.

The Chinese leadership harnessed its dependence on the West for capital investments and technology, into instruments for creating a powerful export economy and the growth of a dynamic national public-private manufacturing complex.  The imperial centers of finance which flourished under lax regulation crashed.  The domestic foundations of empire were severely strained.  The imperial war machine competed with the financial sector for federal budgetary expenditures and subsidies.

The easy growth of empire, led to its over-extension.  Multiple areas of conflict, reflected world-wide resentment and hostility at the destruction wrought by bombings and invasions.  Collaborative imperial client rulers were weakened.  The world-wide empire exceeded the capacity of the US to successfully police its new vassal states.  The colonial outposts demanded new infusions of troops, arms and funds at a time when countervailing domestic pressures were demanding retrenchment and retreat.

All the recent conquests – outside of Europe – were costly.  The sense of invincibility and impunity led imperial planners to overestimate their capacity to expand, retain, control and contain the inevitable anti-imperialist resistance.

The crises and collapse of the neo-liberal vassal states in Latin America accelerated.

Anti-imperialist uprisings spread from Venezuela (1999), to Argentina (2001), Ecuador (2000-2005) and Bolivia (2003-2005).  Center-left regimes emerged in Brazil, Uruguay and Honduras.  Mass movements, in rural regions,among Indian and mining communities gained momentum. Imperial plans formulated to secure US centered integration were rejected.

Instead multiple regional pacts excluding the US proliferated-ALBA,UNASUR,CELAC.  Latin America’s domestic rebellion coincided with the economic rise of China.  A prolonged commodity boom severely weakened US imperial supremacy.  The US had few local allies in Latin America and over ambitious commitments to control the Middle East, South Asia and North Africa.

Washington lost its automatic majority in Latin America:  its backing of coups in Honduras and Paraguay and its intervention in Venezuela (2002) and blockade of Cuba was repudiated by every regime, even by conservative allies.

Having easily established a global empire, Washington found it was not so easy to defend it.  Imperial strategists in Washington viewed the Middle East wars through the prism of the Israeli military priorities ,ignoring the global economic interests of the MNC.

Imperial military strategists overestimated the military capacity of vassals and clients, ill-prepared by Washington to rule in countries with growing armed national resistance movements.  Wars, invasions and military occupations were launched in multiple sites. Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Syria, Pakistan were added to Afghanistan and Iraq.  US imperial state expenditures far exceeded any transfer of wealth from the occupied countries.

A vast civilian – military – mercenary bureaucracy pillaged hundreds of billions of dollars from the US Treasury.

The centrality of wars of conquest, destroyed the economic foundations

and institutional infrastructure necessary for MNC entry and profit.

Once entrenched in strategic military conceptions of empire, the military-political leadership of the imperial state  fashioned a global ideology to justify and motivate a policy of permanent and multiple warfare. The doctrine of the ‘war on terror’ justified war everywhere and nowhere.  The doctrine was ‘elastic’ – adapted to every region of conflict and inviting new military engagements:  Afghanistan, Libya, Iran and Lebanon were all designated as war zones.  The ‘terror doctrine’, global in scope, provided a justification for multiple wars and the massive destruction (not exploitation) of societies and economic resources.  Above all the “war on terrorism” justified torture (Aba Gharib) and concentration camps (Guantanamo), and civilian targets (via drones)anywhere. Troops were withdrawn and returned to Afghanistan and Iraq as the nationalist resistence advanced..  Thousands of Special Forces in scores of countries were active, purveying death and mayhem.

Moreover, the violent uprooting, degradation and stigmatization of entire islamic people led to the spread of violence  in the imperial centers of Paris, New York, London,

Madrid and Copenhagen. The globalization of imperial state terror  led to individual terror.

Imperial terror evoked domestic terror:  the former on a massive, sustained scale encompassing entire civilizations and conducted and justified by elected  political officials and military authorities.  The latter by a cross section  of ‘internationalists’ who directly identified with the victims of imperial state terror.

Contemporary Imperialism:  Present and Future Perspectives

To understand the future of US imperialism it is important to sum up and evaluate the experience and policies of the past quarter of a century.

If we compare, US empire building between 1990 and 2015, it is clearly in decline economically, politically and even militarily in most regions of the world, though the process of decline is not linear and probably not irreversible.

Despite talk in Washington of reconfiguring imperial priorities to take account of MNC economic interests, little has been accomplished… Obama’s so-called “pivot to Asia” has resulted in new military base agreements with Japan, Australia and the Philippines surrounding China and reflects an inability to fashion free trade agreements that exclude China.  Meantime, the US has militarily re-started the war and reentered Iraq and

Afghanistan in addition to launching  new wars in Syria and the Ukraine.  It is clear that the primacy of the militarist faction is still the determinant factor in shaping imperial state policies.

The imperial military drive is most evident in the US intervention in support of the coup in the Ukraine and subsequent financing and arming of the Kiev junta.  The imperial takeover of the Ukraine and plans to incorporate it into the EU and NATO, represents military aggression in its most blatant form: The expansion of US military bases and installations and military maneuvers  on Russia’s borders and the US initiated economic sanctions, have severely damaged EU trade and investment with Russia.. US empire building continues to prioritize military expansion even at the cost of Western imperial economic interests in Europe.

The US-EU bombing of Libya destroyed the burgeoning trade and investment agreements between imperial oil and gas MNC and the Gadhafi government… NATO air assaults destroyed the economy, society and political order, converting Libya into a territory overrun by warring clans, gangs, terrorists and armed thuggery.

Over the past half century, the political leadership and strategies of the imperial state have changed dramatically.  During the period between 1975 – 1990, MNC played a central role in defining the direction of imperial state policy:  leveraging markets in Asia; negotiating market openings with China; promoting and backing neo-liberal military and civilian regimes in Latin America; installing and financing pro-capitalist regimes in Russia, Eastern Europe, the Baltic and Balkan states.  Even in the cases where the imperial state resorted to military intervention, Yugoslavia and Iraq, , the bombings led to favorable economic opportunities for

US MNC .The Bush Sr regime promoted US oil interests via an oil   for food agreement with

Saddam Hussein Iin Iraq

Clinton promoted free market regimes in the mini-states resulting from the break-up of socialist Yugoslavia .

However, the imperial state’s leadership and policies shifted dramatically during the late 1990’s onward.  President Clinton’s imperial state was composed of  long-standing MNC represntatives , Wall Street bankers and newly ascending militarist Zionist officials.

The result was a hybrid policy in which the imperial state actively promoted MNC opportunities under neo-liberal regimes in the ex-Communist countries of Europe and Latin America,and expanded MNC ties with China and Viet Nam while launching destructive military interventions in Somalia, Yugoslavia and Iraq.

The ‘balance of forces’ within the imperialist state shifted dramatically in favor the militarist-Zionist faction with 9/11:the terrorist attack of dubious origens  and  false flag demolitions in New York and Washington served to entrench the militarists in control of a vastly expanded  imperial state apparatus.  As a consequence of 9/11 the militarist-Zionist faction of the imperial state  subordinated the interests of the MNC to its strategy of total wars.  This in turn led to the invasion, occupation and destruction of civilian infrastructure in Iraq and Afghanistan (instead of harnessing it to MNC expansion).  The US colonial regime dismantled the Iraqui state (instead of re-ordering it to serve the MNC).  The assassination and forced out -migration of millions of skilled professionals, administrators, police and military officials crippled any economic recovery (instead of their incorporation as servants of the colonial state and MNC).

The militarist-Zionist ascendancy in the imperial state introduced major changes in policy, orientation , priorities and the modus operandi of US imperialism.  The ideology of the “global war on terror” replaced the MNC doctrine of promoting “economic globalization”.

Perpetual wars (“terrorists” were not confined to place and time) replaced limited wars or interventions directed at opening markets or changing regimes which would implement neo-liberal policies benefiting US MNC.

The locus of imperial state activity shifted from exploiting economic opportunities, in

Asia, Latin America and the ex-Communist countries of Eastern Europe to wars in the Middle East, South Asia and North Africa – targeting Moslem countries which opposed Israel’s colonial expansion in Palestine, Syria, Lebanon and elsewhere.

The new militarist – power configuration’s conception of empire building required vast – trillion dollar – expenditures, without care or thought of returns to private capital.  In contrast, under the hegemony of the MNC, the imperial state, intervened to secure concessions of oil, gas and minerals in Latin America and the Middle East.The costs of military conquest were more than compensated by the returns to the MNC.  The militarist imperial state configuration pillaged the US Treasury to finance its occupations, financing a vast army of corrupt colonial collaborators, private mercenary ‘military contractors’and,soon to be millionaire, US military procurement (sic) officials.

Previously, MNC directed overseas exploitation led to healthy returns to the US Treasury both in terms of direct tax payments and via the revenues generated from trade and the processing of raw materials.

Over the past decade and a half, the biggest and most stable returns to the MNC take place in regions and countries where the militarized imperial state is least involved – China, Latin America and Europe.  The MNC’s have profited least and have lost most in areas of greatest imperial state involvement.

The ‘war zones’ that extend from Libya, Somalia, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Ukraine, Iran and Afghanistan and Pakistan are the regions where imperial MNC have suffered the biggest decline and exodus.

The main “beneficiaries” of the current imperial state policies are the war contractors and the security-military-industrial complex in the US.Oversees the state beneficiaries include Israel and Saudi Arabia…In addition Jordanian, Egyptian, Iraqui , Afghani and Pakistani client rulers have squirreled away tens of billions in off-shore private bank accounts.

The “non-state” beneficiaries include mercenary, proxy armies .In Syria, Iraq, Libya, Somalia and the Ukraine , tens of thousands of collaborators in self-styled “nongovernmental” organizations  have also profited.

The Lost-Benefit Calculus or Empire-Building under the Aegeus of the Militarist-

Zionist Imperial State

Sufficient time has passed over the past decade and a half of militarist-Zionist dominance of the imperial state to evaluate their performance.

The US and its Western European allies, especially Germany successfully expanded their empire in Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the Baltic regions without firing a shot.  These countries were converted into EU vassal states.  Their markets dominated and industries denationalized.  Their armed forces were recruited as NATO mercenaries. West Germany annexed the East.  Cheap educated labor, as immigrants and as a labor reserve, increased profits for EU and US MNC. Russia was temporarily reduced to a vassal state between 1991 – 2001.  Living standards plunged and welfare programs were reduced.  Mortality rates increased.  Class inequalities widened.  Millionaires and billionaires seized public resources and joined with the imperial MNC in plundering the economy.  Socialist and Communist leaders and parties were repressed or co-opted.In contrast imperial military expansion of the 21st century, was a costly failure.  The ‘war in Afghanistan’ was costly in lives and expenditures and led to an ignominious retreat.  What remained was a fragile puppet regime and an unreliable mercenary military.  The US-Afghanistan war was the longest war in US history and one of the biggest failures.  In the end the nationalist-Islamist resistance movements – the so-called “Taliban” and allied ethno-religious and nationalist anti-imperialist resistance groups- dominate the countryside, repeatedly penetrate and attack urban centers and prepare to take power.

The Iraq war and the imperial state’s invasion and decade long occupation decimated the economy .  The occupation fomented ethno religious warfare.  The secular Ba’thist officers and military professionals joined with Islamist-nationalists and subsequently formed a powerful resistance movement (ISIS) which defeated the imperial backed Shia mercenary army  during the second decade of the war.  The imperial state was condemned to re-enter and engage directly in a prolonged war.  The cost of war spiraled to over a trillion dollars.  Oil exploitation was hampered and the US Treasury poured tens of billions to sustain a “war without end’.

The US imperial state and the EU, along with  Saudi Arabia and Turkey financed armed Islamic mercenary militias to invade Syria and overthrow the secular, nationalist, anti-

Zionist Bashar Assad regime.  The imperial war opened the door for the expansion of the Islamic –Ba’thist forces—ISIS– into Syria .  The Kurds and other armed groups seized territory, fragmenting the country.  After nearly 5 years of warfare and rising military costs the US and EU MNC have been cut off from the Syrian market.

US support for Israeli aggression against Lebanon has led to the growth in power of the anti-imperialist Hezbollah armed resistance.  Lebanon, Syria and Iran now represent a serious alternative to the US,EU, Saudi Arabia, Israeli axis.

The US sanctions policy toward Iran has failed to undermine the nationalist regime and has totally undercut the economic opportunities of all the major US and EU oil and gas

MNC as well as US manufacturing exporters.China has replaced them

The US-EU invasion of Libya led to the destruction of the economy and the flight of billions in MNC investments and the disruption of exports.

The US imperial states’ seizure of power via a proxy coup in Kiev, provoked a  powerful anti-imperialist rebellion led by armed militia in the East (Donetsk and Luhansk) and the decimation of the Ukraine economy.

In summary, the military-Zionist takeover of the imperial state has led to prolonged, unwinnable costly wars which have undermined markets and investment sites for US MNC.  Imperial militarism has undermined the imperial economic presence and provoked long-term, growing anti-imperialist resistance movements, as well as chaotic, unstable and unviable countries out of imperial control.

Economic imperialism has continued to profit in parts of Europe, Asia , Latin America and Africa despite the imperial wars and economic sanctions pursued by the highly militarized imperial state elsewhere.

However, the US militarists’ seizure of power in the Ukraine and the sanctions against Russia have eroded EU’S profitable trade and investments in Russia.  The Ukraine under IMF-EU-US tutelage has become a heavily indebted , broken  economy run by kleptocrats who are  totally dependent on foreign loans and military intervention.

Because the militarized imperial state prioritizes conflict and sanctions with Russia, Iran and Syria, it has failed to deepen and expand  its economic ties with Asia, Latin America and Africa.  The political and economic conquest of East Europe and parts of the USSR has lost significance.  The perpetual, lost wars in the Middle East, North Africa and the Caucuses have weakened the imperial state’s capacity for empire building in Asia and Latin America.

The outflow of wealth, the domestic cost of perpetual wars has eroded the electoral foundations of empire building.  Only a fundamental change in the composition of the imperial state and a reorientation of priorities toward centering on economic expansion can alter the current decline of empire.  The danger is that as the militarist Zionist imperialist state pursues losing wars, it may escalate and  raise the ante ,and move toward a major nuclear confrontation:  an empire amidst nuclear ashes!

The Assassination of Greece

petras

Introduction: The Greek government is currently locked in a life and death struggle with the elite which dominate the banks and political decision-making centers of the European Union. What are at stake are the livelihoods of 11 million Greek workers, employees and small business people and the viability of the European Union.


If the ruling Syriza government capitulates to the demands of the EU bankers and agrees to continue the austerity programs, Greece will be condemned to decades of regression, destitution and colonial rule. If Greece decides to resist, and is forced to exit the EU, it will need to repudiate its 270 billion Euro foreign debts, sending the international financial markets crashing and causing the EU to collapse.

The leadership of the EU is counting on Syriza leaders abandoning their commitments to the Greek electorate, which as of early February 2015, is overwhelmingly (over 70%) in favor of ending austerity and debt payments and moving forward toward state investment in national economic and social development (Financial Times 7-8/2/15, p. 3). The choices are stark; the consequences have world-historical significance. The issues go far beyond local or even regional, time-bound, impacts. The entire global financial system will be affected (FT 10/2/15, p. 2).

The default will ripple to all creditors and debtors, far beyond Europe; investor confidence in the entire western financial empire will be shaken. First and foremost all western banks have direct and indirect ties to the Greek banks (FT 2/6/15, p. 3). When the latter collapse, they will be profoundly affected beyond what their governments can sustain. Massive state intervention will be the order of the day. The Greek government will have no choice but to take over the entire financial system . . . the domino effect will first and foremost effect Southern Europe and spread to the ‘dominant regions’ in the North and then across to England and North America (FT 9/2/15, p. 2).

To understand the origins of this crises and alternatives facing Greece and the EU, it is necessary to briefly survey the political and economic developments of the past three decades. We will proceed by examining Greek and EU relations between 1980 – 2000 and then proceed to the current collapse and EU intervention in the Greek economy. In the final section we will discuss the rise and election of Syriza, and its growing submissiveness in the context of EU dominance, and intransigence, highlighting the need for a radical break with the past relationship of ‘lord and vassal’.

Ancient History: The Making of the European Empire

In 1980 Greece was admitted to the European Economic Council as a vassal state of the emerging Franco-German Empire. With the election of Andreas Papandreou, leader of the Pan-Hellenic Socialist Party, with an absolute majority in Parliament, hope arose that radical changes in domestic and foreign policy would ensue.1/ In particular, during the election campaign, Papandreou promised a break with NATO and the EEC, the revoking of the US military base agreement and an economy based on ‘social ownership’ of the means of production. After being elected, Papandreou immediately assured the EEC and Washington that his regime would remain within the EEC and NATO, and renewed the US military base agreement. Studies in the early 1980’s commissioned by the government which documented the medium and long-term adverse results of Greece remaining in the EEU, especially the loss of control of trade, budgets and markets, were ignored by Papandreou who chose to sacrifice political independence and economic autonomy in favor of large scale transfers of funds, loans and credit from the EEC. Papandreou spoke from the balcony to the masses of independence and social justice while retaining ties to the European bankers and Greek shipping and banking oligarchs. The European elite in Brussels and Greek oligarchs in Athens retained a stranglehold on the commanding heights of the Greek political and economic system.

Papandreou retained the clientelistic political practices put in place by the previous right-wing regimes – only replacing the rightist functionaries with PASOK party loyalists.

The EEC brushed off Papandreou’ phony radical rhetoric and focused on the the fact they were buying control and subservience of the Greek state by financing a corrupt, clientelistic regime which was deflecting funds for development projects to upgrade Greek economic competitiveness into building a patronage machine based on increased consumption.

The EEC elite ultimately knew that its financial stranglehold over the economy would enable it to dictate Greek policy and keep it within the boundaries of the emerging European empire.

Papandreou’s demagogic “third world” rhetoric notwithstanding, Greece was deeply ensconced in the EU and NATO. Between 1981-85, Papandreou discarded his socialist rhetoric in favor of increased social spending for welfare reforms, raising wages, pensions and health coverage, while refinancing bankrupt economic firms run into the ground by kleptocratic capitalists. As a result while living standards rose, Greece’s economic structure still resembled a vassal state heavily dependent on EEC finance, European tourists and a rentier economy based on real estate, finance and tourism.

Papandreou solidified Greece’s role as a vassal outpost of NATO; a military platform for US military intervention in the Middle East and the eastern Mediterranean; and market for German and northern European manufactured goods.

From October 1981 to July 1989 Greek consumption rose while productivity stagnated; Papandreou won elections in 1985 using EEC funds. Meanwhile Greek debt to Europe took off … EEC leaders chastised the misallocation of funds by Papandreou’s vast army of kleptocrats but not too loudly. Brussels recognized that Papandreou and PASOK were the most effective forces in muzzling the radical Greek electorate and keeping Greece under EEC tutelage and as a loyal vassal of NATO.

Lessons for Syriza: PASOK’s Short-term Reforms and Strategic Vassalage

Whether in government or out, PASOK followed in the footsteps of its rightwing adversary (New Democracy) by embracing the NATO-EEC strait-jacket.
Greece continued to maintain the highest per capita military expenditure of any European NATO member. As a result, it received loans and credits to finance short-term social reforms and large scale, long-term corruption, while enlarging the party-state political apparatus.

With the ascent of the openly neoliberal Prime Minister Costas Simitis in 2002, the PASOK regime “cooked the books”, fabricated government data on its budget deficit, with the aid of Wall Street investment banks, and became a member of the European Monetary Union. By adopting the euro, Simitis furthered deepened Greece’s financial subordination to the non-elected European officials in Brussels, dominated by the German finance ministry and banks.

The oligarchs in Greece made room at the top for a new breed of PASOK kleptocratic elite, which skimmed millions of military purchases, committed bank frauds and engaged in massive tax evasion.

The Brussels elite allowed the Greek middle class to live their illusions of being ‘prosperous Europeans’ because they retained decisive leverage through loans and accumulating debts.

Large scale bank fraud involving three hundred million euros even reached ex-Prime Minister Papandreou’s office.

The clientele relations within Greece were matched by the clientele relations between Brussels and Athens.

Even prior to the crash of 2008 the EU creditors, private bankers and official lenders, set the parameters of Greek politics. The global crash revealed the fragile foundations of the Greek state – and led directly to the crude, direct interventions of the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission – the infamous “Troika”. The latter dictated the ‘austerity’ policies as a condition for the “bail-out” which devastated the economy, provoking a major depression; impoverishing over forty percent of the population, reducing incomes by 25% and resulting in 28% unemployment.

Greece: Captivity by Invitation

Greece as a political and economic captive of the EU had no political party response. Apart from the trade unions which launched thirty general strikes between 2009 – 2014, the two major parties, PASOK and New Democracy, invited the EU takeover. The degeneration of PASOK into an appendage of oligarchs and vassal collaborator of the EU emptied the ‘socialist’ rhetoric of any meaning. The right wing New Democracy Party reinforced and deepened the stranglehold of the EU over the Greek economy. The troika lent the Greek vassal state funds(“bail-out”) which was used to pay back German, French and English financial oligarchs and to buttress private Greek banks. The Greek population was ‘starved’ by ‘austerity’ policies to keep the debt payments flowing-outward and upward.

Europe: Union or Empire?

The European economic crash of 2008/09 resounded worst on its weakest links – Southern Europe and Ireland. The true nature of the European Union as a hierarchical empire, in which the powerful states – Germany and France – could openly and directly control investment, trade, monetary and financial policy was revealed. The much vaunted EU “bailout” of Greece was in fact the pretext for the imposition of deep structural changes. These included the denationalization and privatization of all strategic economic sectors; perpetual debt payments; foreign dictates of incomes and investment policy. Greece ceased to be an independent state:it was totally and absolutely colonized.

Greece’s Perpetual Crises: The End of the “European Illusion”

The Greek elite and, for at least 5 years, most of the electorate, believed that the regressive (“austerity”) measures adopted – the firings, the budget cuts, the privatizations etc. were short-term harsh medicine, that would soon lead to debt reduction, balanced budgets, new investments, growth and recovery. At least that is what they were told by the economic experts and leaders in Brussels.

In fact the debt increased, the downward economic spiral continued, unemployment multiplied, the depression deepened. ‘Austerity’ was a class based policy designed by Brussels to enrichoverseas bankers and to plunder the Greek public sector.

The key to EU pillage and plunder was the loss of Greek sovereignty. The two major parties ,New Democracy and PASOK, were willing accomplices. Despite a 55% youth (16 – 30 years old) unemployment rate, the cut-off of electricity to 300,000 households and large scale out-migration (over 175,000), the EU (as was to be expected) refused to concede that the ‘austerity’ formula was a failure in recovering the Greek economy. The reason the EU dogmatically stuck to a ‘failed policy’ was because the EU benefited from the power, privilege and profits of pillage and imperial primacy.

Moreover, for the Brussels elite to acknowledge failure in Greece would likely result in the demand to recognize failure in the rest of Southern Europe and beyond, including in France Italy and other key members of the EU (Economist 1/17/15, p. 53). The ruling financial and business elites in Europe and the US prospered through the crises and depression, by imposing cuts in social budgets and wages and salaries. To concede failure in Greece, would reverberate throughout North America and Europe, calling into question their economic policies, ideology and the legitimacy of the ruling powers. The reason that all the EU regimes back the EU insistence that Greece must continue to abide by an obviously perverse and regressive ‘austerity’ policy and impose reactionary “structural reforms” is because these very same rulers have sacrificed the living standards of their own labor force during the economic crises (FT2/13/15, p. 2).

The economic crises spanning 2008/9 to the present (2015), still requires harsh sacrifices to perpetuate ruling class profits and to finance state subsidies to the private banks. Every major financial institution – the European Central Bank, the European Commission and the IMF – toes the line: no dissent or deviation is allowed. Greece must accept EU dictates or face major financial reprisals. “Economic strangulation or perpetual debt peonage” is the lesson which Brussels tends to all member states of the EU. While ostensibly speaking to Greece – it is a message directed to all states, opposition movements and trade unions who call into question the dictates of the Brussels oligarchy and its Berlin overlords.

All the major media and leading economic pundits have served as megaphones for the Brussel oligarchs. The message, which is repeated countless times, by liberals, conservatives and social democrats to the victimized nations and downwardly mobile wage and salaried workers, and small businesspeople, is that they have no choice but to accept regressive measure, slashing living conditions (“reforms”) if they hope for ‘economic recovery’ – which, of course, has not happened after five years!

Greece has become the central target of the economic elites in Europe because, the Greek people have gone from inconsequential protests to political powers. The election of Syriza on a platform of recovering sovereignty, discarding austerity and redefining its relations with creditors to favor national development has set the stage for a possible continent-wide confrontation.

The Rise of Syriza: Dubious Legacies, Mass Struggles and Radical (Broken) Promises

The growth of Syriza from an alliance of small Marxist sects into a mass electoral party is largely because of the incorporation of millions of lower middle class public employees, pensioners and small businesspeople. Many previously supported PASOK. They voted Syriza in order to recover the living conditions and job security of the earlier period of “prosperity” (2000-2007) which they achieved within the EU. Their radical rejection of PASOK and New Democracy came after 5 years of acute suffering which might have provoked a revolution in some other country. Their radicalism began with protests, marches and strikes were attempts to pressure the rightwing regimes to alter the EU’s course, to end the austerity while retaining membership in the EU.

This sector of SYRIZA is ‘radical’ in what it opposes today and conformist with its nostalgia for the past. –the time of euro funded vacation trips to London and Paris, easy credit to purchase imported cars and foodstuffs, to ‘feel modern’ and ‘European’ and speak English!

The politics of Syriza reflects, in part, this ambiguous sector of its electorate. In contrast Syriza also secured the vote of the radical unemployed youth and workers who never were part of the consumer society and didn’t identify with “Europe”. Syriza has emerged as a mass electoral party in the course of less than five years and its supporters and leadership reflects a high degree of heterogeneity.

The most radical sector, ideologically, is drawn mostly from the Marxist groups which originally came together to form the party. The unemployed youth sector joined, following the anti-police riots, which resulted from the police assassination of a young activist during the early years of the crisis. The third wave is largely made up of thousands of public workers, who were fired, and retired employees who suffered big cuts in their pensions by order of the troika in 2012. The fourth wave is ex PASOK members who fled the sinking ship of a bankrupt party.

The Syriza Left is concentrated at the mass base and among local and middle level leaders of local movements. The top leaders of Syriza in power positions are academics, some from overseas. Many are recent members or are not even party members. Few have been involved in the mass struggles – and many have few ties with the rank and file militants. They are most eager to sign a “deal” selling out the impoverished Greeks

As Syriza moved toward electoral victory in 2015, it began to shed its original program of radical structural changes (socialism) and adopt measures aimed at accommodating Greek business interests. Tsipras talked about “negotiating an agreement” within the framework of the German dominated European Union. Tsipras and his Finance Minister proposed to re-negotiate the debt, the obligation to pay and 70% of the “reforms”! When an agreement was signed they totally capitulated!

For a brief time Syriza maintained a dual position of ‘opposing’ austerity and coming to agreement with its creditors. It’s “realist” policies reflected the positions of the new academic ministers, former PASOK members and downwardly mobile middle class. Syriza’s radical gestures and rhetoric reflected the pressure of the unemployed, the youth and the mass poor who stood to lose, if a deal to pay the creditors was negotiated.

EU – SYRIZA: Concessions before Struggle Led to Surrender and Defeat

The “Greek debt” is really not a debt of the Greek people. The institutional creditors and the Euro-banks knowingly lent money to high risk kleptocrats, oligarchs and bankers who siphoned most of the euros into overseas Swiss accounts, high end real estate in London and Paris, activity devoid of any capacity to generate income to pay back the debt. In other words, the debt, in large part, is illegitimate and was falsely foisted on the Greek people.

Syriza, from the beginning of ‘negotiations’, did not call into question the legitimacy of the debt nor identified the particular classes and enterprise who should pay it.

Secondly, while Syriza challenged “austerity” policies it did not question the Euro organizations and EU institutions who impose it.

From its beginning Syriza has accepted membership in the EU. In the name of “realism” the Syriza government accepted to pay the debt or a portion of it, as the basis of negotiation.

Structurally, Syriza has developed a highly centralized leadership in which all major decisions are taken by Alexis Tsipras. His personalistic leadership limits the influence of the radicalized rank and file. It facilitated “compromises” with the Brussels oligarchy which go contrary to the campaign promises and may lead to the perpetual dependence of Greece on EU centered policymakers and creditors.

Moreover, Tsipras has tightened party discipline in the aftermath of his election, ensuring that any dubious compromises will not lead to any public debate or extra-parliamentary revolt.

The Empire against Greece’s Democratic Outcome

The EU elite have, from the moment in which Syriza received a democratic mandate, followed the typical authoritarian course of all imperial rulers. It has demanded from Syriza (1)unconditional surrender (2) the continuation of the structures, policies and practices of the previous vassal coalition party-regimes (PASOK-New Democracy) (3) that Syriza shelve all social reforms, (raising the minimum wage, increasing pension, health, education and unemployment spending (4) that SYRIZA follow the strict economic directives and oversight formulated by the “troika” (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund) (5) that SYRIZA retain the current primary budget surplus target of 4.5 percent of economic output in 2015-2017.

To enforce its strategy of strangulating the new government, Brussels threatened to abruptly cut off all present and future credit facilities, call in all debt payments, end access to emergency funds and refuse to back Greek bank bonds – that provide financial loans to local businesses.

Brussels presents Syriza with the fateful “choice”, of committing political suicide by accepting its dictates and alienating its electoral supporters. By betraying its mandate, Syriza will confront angry mass demonstrations. Rejecting Brussels’ dictates and proceeding to mobilize its mass base, Syriza could seek new sources of financing, imposing capital controls and moving toward a radical “emergency economy”.

Brussel has “stone-walled” and turned a deaf ear to the early concessions which Syriza offered. Instead Brussels sees concessions as ‘steps’ toward complete capitulation, instead of as efforts to reach a “compromise”.

Syriza has already dropped calls for large scale debt write-offs, in favor of extending the time frame for paying the debt. Syriza has agreed to continue debt payments, provided they are linked to the rate of economic growth. Syriza accepts European oversight, provided it is not conducted by the hated “troika”, which has poisonous connotations for most Greeks. However, semantic changes do not change the substance of “limited sovereignty”.

Syriza has already agreed to long and middle term structural dependency in order to securetime and leeway in financing its short-term popular impact programs. All that Syriza asks is minimum fiscal flexibility under supervision of the German finance minister-some “radicals”!

Syriza has temporarily suspended on-going privatization of key infrastructure (sea- ports and airport facilities) energy and telecommunication sectors. But is has not terminated them, norrevised the past privatization. But for Brussels “sell-off” of Greek lucrative strategic sectors is an essential part of its “structural reform” agenda.

Syriza’s moderate proposals and its effort to operate within the EU framework established by the previous vassal regimes was rebuffed by Germany and its 27 stooges in the EU.

The EU’s dogmatic affirmation of extremist, ultra neo-liberal policies, including the practice of dismantling Greece’s national economy and transferring the most lucrative sectors into the hands of imperial investors, is echoed in the pages of all the major print media. The Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Le Monde are propaganda arms of EU extremism. Faced with Brussel’s intransigence and confronting the ‘historic choice’ of capitulation or radicalization, Syriza tried persuasion of key regimes. Syriza held numerous meetings with EU ministers. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Finance Minister Yanis Vardoulakis traveled to Paris, London, Brussels, Berlin and Rome seeking a “compromise” agreement. This was to no avail. The Brussels elite repeatedly insisted:

Debts would have to be paid in full and on time.

Greece should restrict spending to accumulate a 4.5% surplus that would ensure payments to creditors, investors, speculators and kleptocrats.

The EU’s lack of any economic flexibility or willingness to accept even a minimum compromise is a political decision: to humble and destroy the credibility of SYRIZA as an anti-austerity government in the eyes of its domestic supporters and potential overseas imitators in Spain, Italy, Portugal and Ireland (Economist 1/17/15, p. 53).

Conclusion

The strangulation of Syriza is part and parcel of the decade long process of the EU’s assassination of Greece. A savage response to a heroic attempt by an entire people, hurled into destitution, condemned to be ruled by kleptocratic conservatives and social democrats.

Empires do not surrender their colonies through reasonable arguments or by the bankruptcy of their regressive “reforms”.

Brussel’s attitude toward Greece is guided by the policy of “rule or ruin”. “Bail out” is a euphemism for recycling financing through Greece back to Euro-controlled banks, while Greek workers and employees are saddled with greater debt and continued dominance. Brussel’s “bail out” is an instrument for control by imperial institutions, whether they are called “troika” or something else.

Brussels and Germany do not want dissenting members; they may offer to make some minor concessions so that Finance Minister Vardoulakis may claim a ‘partial victory’ – a sham and hollow euphemism for a belly crawl

The “bail out” agreement will be described by Tsipras-Vardoulakis as ‘new’ and “different’ from the past or as a ‘temporary’ retreat. The Germans may ‘allow’ Greece to lower its primary budget surplus from 4.5 to 3.5 percent ‘next year’ – but it will still reduce the funds for economic stimulus and “postpone” raises in pensions, minimum wages etc.

Privatization and other regressive reforms will not be terminated, they will be “renegotiated”. The state will retain a minority “share”.

Plutocrats will be asked to pay some added taxes but not the billions of taxes evaded over the past decades.

Nor will the PASOK – New Democracy kleptocratic operatives be prosecuted for pillage and theft.

Syriza’s compromises demonstrate that the looney right’s (the Economist, Financial Times, NY Times, etc.) characterization of Syriza as the “hard left” or the ultra-left have no basis in reality. For the Greek electorate’s “hope for the future” could turn to anger in the present. Onlymass pressure from below can reverse Syriza’s capitulation and Finance Minister Vardoulakisunsavory compromises. Since he lacks any mass base in the party, Tsipras can easily dismiss him, for signing off on “compromise” which sacrifices the basic interests of the people.

However, if in fact, EU dogmatism and intransigence forecloses even the most favorable deals, Tsipras and Syriza, (against their desires) may be forced to exit the Euro Empire and face the challenge of carving out a new truly radical policy and economy as a free and independent country.

A successful Greek exit from the German – Brussels empire would likely lead to the break-up of the EU, as other vassal states rebel and follow the Greek example. They may renounce not only austerity but their foreign debts and eternal interest payments. The entire financial empire – the so-called global financial system could be shaken . . .
Greece could once again become the ‘cradle of democracy’.

Post-Script:Thirty years ago, I was an active participant and adviser for three years (1981-84) to Prime Minister Papandreou. He, like Tsipras, began with the promise of radical changes and ended up capitulating to Brussels and NATO and embracing the oligarchs and kleptocrats in the name of “pragmatic compromises”. Let us hope, that facing a mass revolt, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Syriza will follow a different path. History need not repeat itself as tragedy or farce.

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[1] The account of the Andreas Papandreou regime draws on personal experience, interviews and observations and from my co-authored article “Greek Socialism: The Patrimonial State Revisited” in James Kurth and James Petras, Mediterranean Paradoxes: the Politics and Social Structure of Southern Europe (Oxford: Berg Press 1993/ pp. 160 -224)

James Petras was Director of the Center for Mediterranean Studies in Athens (1981-1984) and adviser to Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou (1981-84). He resigned in protest over the PM expulsion of leading trade unionists from PASOK for organizing a general strike against his ‘stabilization program’.

Petras is co-author of Mediterranean Paradoxes: The Politics and Social Structure of Southern Europe. His latest books include Extractive Imperialism in the Americas (with Henry Veltmeyer); and The Politics of Empire: the US, Israel and the Middle East.

“Color revolutions” are foreign funded psycho-social operations of deception

Color revolutions are, without a doubt, one of the main features of global political developments today. Should the reader wonder what a “color revolution” is, keep reading.

Let us first begin with the Wikipedia definition. That website introduces the concept by stating the following:

Color revolution(s) is a term used by the media to describe related [political] movements that developed in several societies in the CIS (former USSR) and Balkan states during the early 2000’s. Some observers have called the events a revolutionary wave.

“Participants in the color revolutions have mostly used nonviolent resistance, also called civil resistance. Such methods as demonstrations, strikes and interventions have been [used to] protest against governments seen as corrupt and/or authoritarian, and to advocate democracy; and they have also created strong pressure for change. These movements all adopted a specific color or flower as their symbol. The color revolutions are notable for the important role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and particularly student activists in organizing creative non-violent resistance.

“These movements have been successful in Serbia (especially the Bulldozer Revolution of 2000), in Georgia’s Rose Revolution (2003), in Ukraine’s Orange Revolution(2004), in Lebanon’s Cedar Revolution and (though more violent than the previous ones) in Kyrgyzstan’s Tulip Revolution (2005), in Kuwait’s Blue Revolution (2005), in Iraq’s Purple Revolution (2005), and in Czechoslovakia’s Velvet Revolution (1989), but failed in Iran’s Green Revolution (2009–2010) . Each time massive street protests followed disputed elections or request of fair elections and led to the resignation or overthrow of leaders considered by their opponents to be authoritarian.”

What the Wikipedia article fails to mention is the massive foreign funding (State Department, Private corporations and affiliated “NGO’s”), and at least a notion that color revolutions are clear psycho-social operations of deception.

It’s a fact that Western governments (especially the US government) and various non-governmental organizations (NGOs) spend millions of dollars to co-opt and “channel” local populations of targeted countries against their own political leadership.

Empty democracy slogans and flashy colors aside, one can argue that color revolutions are good old-fashioned regime change operations: destabilization without the tanks.

https://athenianvoice.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/b4208-iranprotestor.jpg?w=480

The secret ingredient is a sophisticated science used to manipulate emotions and circumvent critical thinking. History shows that, to much of the power elite, humanity is seen as a collection of nerve endings to be pushed and pulled one way or the other, sometimes made to tremble in fear, sometimes made to salivate like Pavlov’s dogs. These days the manipulation is so pervasive, so subtle, so effective, that even critical individuals at times must necessarily fail to recognize how often – or in what context – they have fallen prey.

Of course fear is the most obvious emotion played upon to effect massive social change. One need only to reflect upon the last fourteen years, since 9/11, to know that fear is a primary instrument used to initiate and justify dangerous shifts in public policy.

But as humanity has been physiologically equipped with a range of emotions, and is not merely arrested and controlled by fear alone, a strata of behavioral and political science also found it useful to master the flip-side of the emotional spectrum, and by that we mean desire. All that, drives groups of individuals to act, even in the face of fear, in pursuit of something worthwhile.

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Many are the professions that utilize this type of understanding, including (but not limited to) marketing, advertising, public relations, politics and law-making, radio, television, journalism and news, film, music, general business and salesmanship; each of them selling, branding, promoting, entertaining, sloganeering, framing, explaining, creating friends and enemies, arguing likes and dislikes, setting the boundaries of good and evil: in many cases using their talents to circumvent their audiences’ intellect, the real target being emotional, often times even subconscious.

https://i1.wp.com/bmpr.com/chip_martin/blogs/images/chip_martin/Skyyad5.jpg(Legs for educational purposes only)

Looking beneath the facade of the color revolutionary movement we also find a desire-based behavioral structure, in particular one that has been built upon historical lessons offered by social movements and periods of political upheaval.

It then makes sense that the personnel of such operations include perception managers, PR firms, pollsters and opinion-makers in the social media. Through the operational infrastructure, these entities work in close coordination with intelligence agents, local and foreign activists, strategists and tacticians, tax-exempt foundations, governmental agencies, and a host of non- governmental organizations.

Collectively, their job is to make a palace coup (a situation in which a leader is removed from power by the people who have worked with him or her) seem like a social revolution; to help fill the streets with fearless demonstrators advocating on behalf of a government of their choosing, which then legitimizes the sham governments with the authenticity of popular democracy and revolutionary fervor.

Because the operatives perform much of their craft in the open, their effectiveness is heavily predicated upon their ability to veil the influence backing them, and the long-term intentions guiding their work.

Their effectiveness is predicated on their ability to deceive, targeting both local populations and foreign audiences with highly-misleading interpretations of the underlying causes provoking these events.

And this is where we come in: to help deconstruct the deception.

But we will not just cover color revolutions here, as color revolutions are bound up in the larger geopolitical universe. A color revolution is only an instrument of foreign policy – only a tool – the ultimate object being the geopolitical advantages gained by powerful financiers and the brain trust they employ. It follows that understanding geopolitical context (and motive) is necessary to understanding the purpose of the color revolution.

Toward that end, we will discuss and analyze relationships of global power in great detail. We will highlight specific institutions of power; identify what their power rests upon; draw attention to the individuals that finance and direct their activities; speculate upon some of their motives; and get to know the broad range of tools they use to achieve them, tools which include the color revolution.

As in-depth studies into the color revolution are far too rare, and as the issue itself is far too obscure, we hope to draw more attention to it; to spark discussion and even debate.

It is an issue that takes time and patience. And it is for those that are willing to provide this time and patience that we offer this site.

“Never utter these words: ‘I do not know this, therefore it is false.’ One must study to know; know to understand; understand to judge.” – Apothegm of Narada

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Color Revolution Brands:

OTPOR! (Serbia), 2000

OTPOR! (Serbia), 2000

ZUBR! (Belarus), ongoing

ZUBR! (Belarus), ongoing

KMARA! (Georgia), 2003

KMARA! (Georgia), 2003

PORA! (Ukraine), 2004

PORA! (Ukraine), 2004

Cedar Revolution (Lebanon), 2005

Cedar Revolution (Lebanon), 2005

KelKel (Kyrgyzstan), 2005

KelKel (Kyrgyzstan), 2005

Obama Campaign (United States), 2008

Obama Campaign (United States), 2008

Jasmine Revolution (Tunisia), 2011

Jasmine Revolution (Tunisia), 2011

April 6th Movement (Egypt), 2011

April 6th Movement (Egypt), 2011

National League for Democracy (Myanmar), ongoing

National League for Democracy (Myanmar), ongoing

Green Movement (Iran), ongoing

Green Movement (Iran), ongoing

Girifna (Sudan), Ongoing

Girifna (Sudan), Ongoing

Oborona (Russia), ongoing

Oborona (Russia), ongoing

Red Shirt Movement (Thailand), ongoing

Red Shirt Movement (Thailand), ongoing

Bersih (Malaysia), ongoing

Bersih (Malaysia), ongoing

Movement for Democratic Change (Zimbabwe), ongoing

Movement for Democratic Change (Zimbabwe), ongoing

Local Coordination Committees (Syria), ongoing

Local Coordination Committees (Syria), ongoing

MJAFT! (Albania), ongoing

MJAFT! (Albania), ongoing

White Ribbon Movement (Russia), ongoing

White Ribbon Movement (Russia), ongoing

Occupy Movement (United States), ongoing

Occupy Movement (United States), ongoing

Free Pussy Riot! (PR Stunt)

Free Pussy Riot! (PR Stunt)

Geopolitical ‘nation take-over’ games and Color Revolutions – ‘Must Read’ Documents (Download full Documents)

Some of the absolute most important documents in the subjects of Geopolitical Games and Color Revolutions, is gathered here. They can be used as sources and references for organized, political action, and for a free, well-informed, democratic, political struggle that actually matters.

Related posts:

“Colour revolutions” are foreign funded psycho-social operations of deception

 

Click on the image to read or download full document

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Documents

 

“The Democracy Program” Letter to President Ronald Reagan (1983)

"The Democracy Program" Letter to President Ronald Reagan (1983)
 Iran: Time for a New Approach (2004 Council on Foreign Relations Task Force Report)
Iran: Time for a New Approach (2004 Council on Foreign Relations Task Force Report)
 Which Path to Persia? (2009 Brookings Institution)
Which Path to Persia? (2009 Brookings Institution)
 Saving Syria: Assessing Options for Regime Change (2012)
Saving Syria: Assessing Options for Regime Change (2012)
 Belarus and the West: Three Scenarios (2011) Report from the Center for European Policy Analysis
Belarus and the West: Three Scenarios (2011) Report from the Center for European Policy Analysis
 Democratic Change in Belarus: A Framework for Action (2011)
Democratic Change in Belarus: A Framework for Action (2011)
 The Kefaya Movement (2008 RAND Corporation report on Egypt)
The Kefaya Movement (2008 RAND Corporation report on Egypt)
From Dictatorship to Democracy, by Gene Sharp (fourth edition, 2010)
From Dictatorship to Democracy, by Gene Sharp (fourth edition, 2010)
198 Methods of Nonviolent Action, by Gene Sharp
198 Methods of Nonviolent Action, by Gene Sharp
The Role of Power in Nonviolent Struggle (1990), by Gene Sharp
The Role of Power in Nonviolent Struggle (1990), by Gene Sharp
US Army FM 3-05 (2005): Tactical Psychological Operations Tactics,
Techniques, and Procedures
US Army FM 3-05 (2005): Tactical Psychological Operations Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures
“The Engineering of Consent” by Edward Bernays (1947)
"The Engineering of Consent" by Edward Bernays (1947)
Declassified “Operation Mongoose” Document
on the Covert War Against Cuba (1962)
Declassified "Operation Mongoose" Document on the Covert War Against Cuba (1962)
 
CIA Nicaragua Manual: Psychological Operations in Guerrilla Warfare
CIA Nicaragua Manual: Psychological Operations in Guerrilla Warfare
“The Freedom Fighter’s Manual”: The CIA’s sabotage guide
against the Nicaraguan Sandinistas
"The Freedom Fighter's Manual": The CIA's sabotage guide against the Nicaraguan Sandinistas
 The Role of Georgia’s Media–and Western Aid–in the Rose Revolution,
by David Anable (2005)
The Role of Georgia's Media--and Western Aid--in the Rose Revolution, by David Anable (2005)
Georgia: Causes of the Rose Revolution and
Lessons for Democracy Assistance (USAID)
Georgia: Causes of the Rose Revolution and Lessons for Democracy Assistance (USAID)
United States Institute for Peace Task Force Report:
Preventing Genocide (2008)
United States Institute for Peace Task Force Report: Preventing Genocide (2008)
International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty
“Responsibility to Protect” 2001
International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty "Responsibility to Protect" 2001
CANVAS Core Curriculum: A Guide to Effective Nonviolent Struggle (2007)
CANVAS Core Curriculum: A Guide to Effective Nonviolent Struggle (2007)
 Power and Persuasion: Nonviolent Strategies
to Influence State Security Forces (2006)
Power and Persuasion: Nonviolent Strategies to Influence State Security Forces (2006)

From Orwell’s “1984”: Color Revolutions and Irregular Warfare Against Eurasia

By Wayne Madsen (Strategic Culture Foundation)

«Oceania was at war with Eurasia: therefore Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia. The enemy of the moment always represented absolute evil, and it followed that any past or future agreement with him was impossible». These are the words from «1984», George Orwell’s fictional novel and eerily correct prognostication of future events from geopolitics to the loss of privacy and the rise of the surveillance state. Oceania fictionally represented the British Isles, North and South America, southern Africa, and Australasia. In Orwell’s world, Eurasia was comprised of Russia and Europe while another power, Eastasia, included China, Korea, and Japan.

Today, a modified form of the dystopian future world map of Orwell is becoming reality as Russia and China increasingly cooperate economically, politically, and militarily to ensure that the forces of Oceania – centered in Washington, London, Berlin, and Paris – do not overrun Eurasia.

At last month’s third annual International Security Conference in Moscow, a conclave sponsored by the Russian Defense Ministry, Chief of Staff of the Russian armed forces, General Valery Gerasimov stated that Western-financed and organized «color revolutions», such as those employed twice in Ukraine and once in Georgia, represent a form of irregular warfare against Eurasia. Gerasimov’s statement about North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) countries, which resemble Orwell’s Oceania, launching irregular warfare against Eurasia could have been torn from the pages of «1984». Gerasimov cited information warfare, economic sanctions, and support for «proxy criminal organizations» and extremist groups as part of the West’s irregular warfare construct directed against Eurasia.

Gerasimov also said that color revolutions were part and parcel of Western military strategy against Eurasia since the non-military tactics employed were often followed by military force to bring about regime change. This is now the case with the Ukrainian government’s NATO-supported military offensive against federalists in eastern Ukraine, as well as in NATO support for Islamist rebels battling against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Military intervention, including air attacks, was also employed by NATO after the Islamist uprising in eastern Libya that eventually forced Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi from power.

Gerasimov’s comments about color revolutions was supported by none other than Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a non-profit think tank that often reflects the views of the Central Intelligence Agency and U.S. State Department. Cordesman said color revolutions sponsored by the West were a new form of warfare against Russia and China.

Belarusian Defense Minister Yury Zhadobin cited the «godfather» of  CIA-financed themed uprisings and revolutions, Gene Sharp, the director of the Albert Einstein Institution in Boston as the prime motivator of the uprisings witnessed in Europe and the Middle East. The armed forces of Russia, China, and Belarus now consider the West’s support for regime change through color revolutions as being part of the military doctrines of the United States and NATO. The military planners in Moscow, Beijing, and Minsk also view Western private military contractors – mercenaries — such as the former Blackwater, now Academi, as being part of the West’s regime change scenario after the outbreak of color revolutions.

1984-world-map

The reasons for the West’s color revolution and regime change project for Eurasia are clear. With Russia and China at the forefront of developing new Eurasian energy schemes involving natural gas and new transportation routes evoking memories of the old Silk Road, the West feels threatened by the emergence in Eurasia of a dynamic new market that could not only rival but eclipse the European Union and Washington’s proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

The emergence of a new Eurasian identity has alarmed the political leaders of de facto Oceania. Eurasia places economic development and respect for traditions over what many in Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Belarus, and other countries of the region see as a Western «culture» that emphasizes pop culture, homosexuality, destruction of social safety nets, disrespect for religion, destruction of the traditional family unit, and unbridled vulture capitalism that promotes draconian austerity.

The Moscow security conference met at about the same time that Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping met at the fourth Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) held in Shanghai. There, Xi emphasized that Asia has entered the 21st century at that the Cold War mentality should be abandoned. Observers from Japan and the United States looked on as Asian delegates roundly rejected President Barack Obama’s Cold War military «pivot to Asia» and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s revanchist imperial military buildup in east Asia. In many respects, the United States Pacific forces and Japan, the Philippines, and South Korea represent the militaristic «Eastasia» of «1984», an entity that was allied for a period of time with Oceania.

Not only was the «Power of Siberia» natural gas pipeline, which will begin pumping natural gas from Siberia to China in 2018, agreed upon in Shanghai but there are plans to restore the old Silk Road as a major trans-Eurasian highway that will link China to Europe via the trans-Siberian highway and Europe’s E-30 highway. Eventually, an A-class motor highway will link Amsterdam with Beijing via the Asian Highway Network. This network of modern highways will restore the ancient Silk Road of Asia and move goods and passengers throughout Eurasia and, in the process, build new infrastructures in the remotest parts of the Eurasian heartland. This prospect has the banking houses of Europe and America concerned since they will be locked out of the financial sweepstakes.

Eurasia’s leaders, from Putin and Xi, to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Afghan President Hamid Karzai are well aware how the color revolutions that have wracked Ukraine, Georgia, and Kyrgyzstan have been financed. The «Euromaidan» overthrow of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, who rejected a union with the European Union and appeared ready to forge ties with Eurasia, was part of the West’s (or «Oceania’s) first indirect military aggression against Eurasia.

Some Eurasian leaders are aware that the West is trying to derail the developing Eurasian Union. Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev proposed transforming CICA into a new Organization for Security and Development in Asia (OSDA), which would be the closest thing to a Eurasian counterpart to NATO. Stressing Eurasia’s rejection of Western «values», Nazarbayev stressed that OSDA would be built upon Asian «tradition and values». Nazarbayev appeared to be speaking for a number of Eurasian leaders in rejecting the lewd permissiveness of Western culture as witnessed by «Pussy Riot’s» and FEMEN’s displays of vulgarity and gratuitous nudity in places of religious worship in Russia, Ukraine, and other countries.

There is a new competitor to America’s version of Oceania now emerging in Orwell’s Eurasia. Halford John Mackinder’s «Heartland Theory», which was espoused in his book «The Geographical Pivot of History», postulated that the power that controlled Eurasia’s heartland between the Volga and Yangtze and the Arctic Sea and Himalayas would control the destiny of the world.

If the Eurasian Union becomes a successful political and economic union, the United States, Britain, Western Europe, and Japan will be confined to an economically anemic and socially decadent coastal «Rimland» where the few remaining assets will be fought over by the hungry jackals of the banking houses of Wall Street, City of London, and Frankfurt. The outbreak of wars in Syria, Ukraine, and Iraq are but the first shots of the impending war between «Oceania» and «Eurasia».

Zoes sharp democratic positioning in her guidelines to the Greek Parliament reveals two SYRIZA

bouli-eklogi-proedrou-tis-boulis (1)1423226283

Svenska

Ελληνικά

Zoe Konstantopoulou, is the youngest in age and the second woman president of the Parliament. She was elected with 235 votes out of 298 MP’s who took part in the vote. The first official, purely democratic guidelines to the Greek parliament in long time, was given in the opening speech by Mrs. Zoe Konstantopoulou.

The first bright glimpse of sunshine shone on the Greeks, when the black clouds for the first time in five years scattered a little bit. It was a verbal ray, but it came from somewhere it hasn’t come for a very long time in Greece, or in Europe for that matter. It was the official, deeply democratic, patriotic and concrete positioning of the new President of the Parliament, in her opening speech.

For the first time since the bloody civil war, someone in that position, officially express and personally commits themselves to the very basic foundations of Democracy, so crystal clear. She pointed out that the Parliament’s biggest task is to first and foremost defend and guarantee these basic, democratic principles and values and the Greek nations historic right to them. She specifically mentioned the indisputable rights that the Greek nation and the Greek people in particular have, due to its heroic struggles and gigantic sacrifices for democracy and freedom, throughout history. Very firmly she declared, that whoever tries to deprive the Greeks these rights – from now on – will meet a wall with the democratic basic principles in practice. They will meet the original spirit of international law, the substantial essence of the UN-conventions and the Greek people’s constitutional rights, in action. And they will meet a parliament that will, first and above anything else, defend those historic rights and guarantee them to these historic defenders of them.

She gave a very thirsty and almost dehydrated people, a few shots of fresh spring water, after so many decades of drinking toxic and dirty water served with the great powers nicely packaged, bottled, latrine-water. She spoke directly to the hearts of over 80% of the Greeks (including the diaspora). That fact is the reason why Mr Varoufakis looked so worried and was twisting and turning like a “Lord Voldemort on coke”, during Mrs Konstantopoulous speech. Her words were as painful, distorted high noises in his ears, because he wears Soro’s headphones. To all neo-liberal powers on the planet, particularly the bankers that speech was like the sound of a metal knife cutting against an empty plate.

Mr Varoufakis might have taken the European media and the politically correct left-pretenders by storm, but if he doesn’t follow the wide majority of the party’s and the members standpoint on the debt, he will have many battles within the party. Mrs Konstantopoulou views are more rooted in SYRIZA than Varoufakis “austere livelihood” program, the get-used-to-being-poor-program. That he is a brilliant economist there is no question, but to be a brilliant economist is not enough for the position he has. He have to first and foremost work for the Greek people’s interests and nobody else’s. Dr Mengele was also a brilliant physician but his loyalties and his employer posed a lethal threat to many million people. It is for what and for who they work that matters. In his case it’s quite clear that he don’t work for the best of the Greek people.

Mrs Konstantopoulou showed a slightly different line than Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis who has been ensuring the debt and in reality just talks about “stretching it out over a longer time”. She spoke about deletion of the majority of the debt, as was promised. She also stressed that she herself will take initiative to promote the Greek claims of deleting most of the Greek debt and the Development clauses.

Due to the President of Parliament, Mrs Konstantopoulou’s unprecedented, official clarity and sharpness on the basic democratic principles, in contrast with what goes on in the Trojan Horse led parts of the government, it is evident that two ‘SYRIZA’ are in action right now… The Trojan Horse serves the great-powers’ interests, and the others, whose spirit together with the vast majority of the Greek people’s common spirit, spoke through the new President of the Greek Parliament on Friday.

This is the only really good news so far, but only if the new President of the Parliament’s official standpoint is also defended in practice and in action, of course.

Her constitutionally protected position, as President of the Greek Parliament, gives her very big freedom to set the rules and the guidelines for the parliament’s democratic, practical procedures in accordance with the fundamental democratic principles. In practice that means, to actively guarantee and defend the basic democratic rights for the Greek people and it must be based on the people’s requests.

 

Kosmas Loumakis

Stockholm 07-02-2015

 

The speech has not been broadcasted in its entirety anywhere in western media yet, except some excerpt (minutes and seconds from the 24 minutes of the speech). I tried to find it translated on YT, but not even an excerpt anywhere. That speech was a painful noise to the bankers and the global elite. As it always is when democracy’s fundamental principles, international laws and UN conventions are officially pointed out by government members, judges or the President of Parliament in a nation’s government.

I upload it here for you who understand Greek

 

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A Soros «Trojan Horse» inside the New Greek Government?

This is an analysis from the Strategical Cultural Foundation, that with further details confirms my conclusions in my own article “SYRIZA’s new Greek government is just PASOK “updated” – Soro’s edition”.

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A Soros «Trojan Horse» inside the New Greek Government?

Ελληνικα

Wayne MADSEN | 29.01.2015 | 00:00

As Greece celebrates the inauguration of its anti-austerity government, the euphoria should be tempered with a bit of realism. Although new Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who named his son «Ernesto» after Cuban revolutionary Ernesto «Ché» Guevara, and the vast majority of his new Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) government have good left-wing and pro-labor credentials, the same cannot be necessarily said of the man Tsipras chose to be Greece’s new finance minister. Yanis Varoufakisis a citizen of Australia who was educated in Britain and worked as a professor at the University of Texas. Europe has witnessed such dual nationals with conflicting loyalties take power in countries in Eastern Europe, most notably in Ukraine, where American Natalie Jaresko became finance minister in order to deliver International MonetaryFund (IMF) and European Central Bank (ECB) austerity «poison pills» to Ukraine.

Today, the nations of eastern and central Europe are populated with globalists, overt types and those of the «crypto» variety, with many of them, like Varoufakis, citizens or past legal residents of other nations. Romania’s finance minister, Ioana Petrescu, is a Wellesley and Harvard graduate and former fellow for the U.S. Republican Party’s National Republican Institute at the neo-conservative and anti-Russian American Enterprise Institute (AEI). She is also a past professor at the University of Maryland. Although Petrescu’s right-wing connections to Washington appear at odds with Varoufakis’s ties to the neo-liberal Brookings Institution, in the world of «make believe» political differences, Petrescu and Varoufakis are two sides of the same coin. When one follows the money that helped create these two finance ministers, as well as Jaresko, all roads lead back to Washington and entities that suckle from the teat of the Central Intelligence Agency and its myriad of front entities.

Varoufakis’s curriculum vitae, like that of Jaresko’s, reeks of George Soros-intertwined globalist links. For a finance minister who is to — if we believe the dire warnings from the corporate press — challenge the austerity measures dictated to Greece’s previous failed conservative and social democratic governments by the «Troika» of the IMF, ECB, and European Commission, Varoufakis has had a past close relationship with the global entities with which he is expected to battle.

Varoufakis also served as «economist-in-residence» for the Valve Corporation, a video game spinoff of the always-suspect Microsoft Corporation of extreme globalist Bill Gates.

The warning signs that Varoufakis is a «Trojan horse» for the global bankers are abundant. First, Varoufakis served as an economic adviser to the failed PASOK social democratic government of Prime Minister George Papandreou, the man who first put Greece on the road to draconian austerity measures. Varoufakis now claims that he was ardently opposed to Papandreou’s deal with the «Troika» but no one will ever know how much the now-anti austerity finance minister agreed to while he was advising Papadreou on the proper course of action to settle Greece’s enormous debt problem.

Varoufakis is a close friend and co-author of American economist and fellow University of Texas professor James K. Galbraith, the son of the late «eminence grise» of American economists, John Kenneth Galbraith. Galbraith’s ties to the global banking elite are exemplified by his guest scholar position at the elitist Brookings Institution in Washington. In other words, although Tsipras’s biography suggests a bona fide leftist, Varoufakis’s background indicates that Greece’s new finance minister is at home and comfortable with the banker elites who carved out Greece’s national soul with a sharp blade of austerity cuts to social security, public health, and other basic public services.

The foreword to Varoufakis’s book, «A Modest Proposal, which deals with Europe’s financial crisis and which he co-wrote with James Galbraith and former British Member of Parliament Stuart Holland, was written by former French Prime Minister Michael Rocard. Rocard has called for the EU to appoint a European «strongman» and Rocard’s choice is European Parliament president Martin Schulz, the very same man who has warned the new SYRIZA government to abide by the austerity agreements concluded by the past PASOK and conservative governments.

Holland, an adviser to former Greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou, along with French President François Mitterand, helped craft the 1986 Single European Act, one of the charters that helped create the European Union financial system that has been used to emaciate the Greek economy in the name of austerity.

Varoufakis’s commitment to work within the IMF and European banking system is obvious from what the Greek finance minister wrote on his website. After calls by American financial writers Paul Krugman and Mark Weisbrot for Greece to follow the example of Argentina and default on its debts and exit the Eurozone altogether, Varoufakis argues that Greece must «grin and bear» the measures imposed on it by the bankers and the German government as a member of the Eurozone. And that means the SYRIZA finance minister surrendered to the whims of the bankers long before SYRIZA’s electoral victory. Considering the unquestionable leftist credentials of many members of the Greek government, the bankers have, at the very least, a willing accomplice as finance minister on the Greek side of the negotiating table on the future of the nation’s economy and the unpopular Troika-imposed austerity measures that swept SYRIZA to power.

Although Varoufakis stands ready to cut deal after deal with the global and European bankers, his colleagues in the coalition government SYRIZA crafted with the anti-EU but right-wing Independent Greeks party, will not follow EU diktats when it comes to such matters as agreeing to continued austerity, as well as EU sanctions against Russia. No sooner had Tsipras become prime minister, he criticized the EU for issuing a warning about further sanctions against Russia over Ukraine. Tsipras said an anti-Russia European Council statement had been issued without the consent of Greece.

Greece’s new foreign minister, Nikos Kotzias, is, like Varoufakis, an academic. However, unlike Varoufakis, Kotzias, a former Communist, has been a professor at a Greek, not a foreign, university. Kotzias and Tsipras are following through with their promises of opposing current and future EU sanctions against Russia, something that will not endear them to the Soros elements who have their clutches on Varoufakis. Kotzias has the power to veto new or renewed sanctions against Russia. Kotzias is opposed to German domination over Europe and was such a staunch Communist, he supported the crackdown by Polish Communist leader Wojciech Jaruzelski on the Solidarity trade union movement in Poland in the 1980s, a fact that places him at complete loggerheads with EU Polish President Donald Tusk, an early activist within the Solidarity movement, who wants to impose further punitive measures on Russia. In what can only send EU and NATO interventionists into a tail spin, Kotzias will find himself more at home in Moscow than he will in Brussels or Berlin. Russian President Vladimir Putin has already started the process of establishing close relations with the new government in Athens. The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has likely commenced «surge» surveillance of all official communications links between Athens and Moscow and it has also certainly placed Greece, like Russia, Turkey, Brazil, Hungary, Venezuela, Iran, Syria, and Lebanon into the category of a hostile «target» nation for the purposes of collecting signals intelligence or «SIGINT».

Greece, which pioneered the Trojan horse weapon used against Troy, must be on guard against Trojan horses like Varoufakis who have been implanted in the new Greek government.

 

source

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SYRIZA’s new Greek government is just PASOK “updated” – Soro’s edition

Η νέα κυβέρνηση

in Swedish

The SYRIZA government’s inner circle and its first week doesn’t give much hope 

The names in the new Greek government that was announced last Tuesday, gave many of us the shivers. Even we that didn’t believe in all the promises thought at least, that by getting rid of the ruthless, previous “Brussels- och Berlin-servants”, we could breathe out.

On the contrary, we had to abruptly digest the fact that Tsipras really can’t keep many of his main promises to the people. Not with these neo-liberal, “Soro’s boys and girls”, in the inner circle of ministers and vice ministers.

There is no doubt that the people’s choice in the elections was a ‘good step’, it was a step in the right direction but it was really nothing more than just one single step. And that little step is not expressed in the election of a Tsipra’s government, but in the decision of getting rid of the Samara’s government.

253D19293CCD065A27EEAE961B946818A brief analysis was made on Monday by Dimitris Kazakis, the economist and general secretary of the democratic, resistance movement E.PA.M* (the United Popular Front). He commented on some very suspicious members in SYRIZA’s lead, some of the former members of PASOK, the “dirty” members with an unresolved past. He commented on these names, because they are found in minister and vice minister posts, and in the negotiating team of the new government. After one look at the names, one understand that it is more likely that there will be sessions of sheer bargaining, rather than true negotiations about the Debt, the Austerity and the Democracy.

He speaks about the ministers and the members of the negotiation team as, the new finance minister Yanis Varoufakis (a George Soros “boy”), vice prime minister Giannis Dragasakis and the minister of infrastructure, shipping and tourism, Georgos Stathakis, These are the Greek “Dalton brothers from the old PASOK” – Averel is missing, because he started his own party and got 2,4% from family and ‘friends’. All three are the bankers wolves. So the big bankers victory, also in this European ‘left-government’, is obvious.

He speaks about, “negotiator” Nikos Christodoulakis (Minister for Kostas Simitis, one of the most hated prime ministers, because he indebted the Greeks massively, with the infamous stock market fraud and various bribe scandals), Deputy Minister for combating unemployment, Rania Antonopoulou (from Levi Institute and active in several of George Soro’s organizations), “negotiator” Louka Katseli (voted for the first Memorandum and said afterward that she was not even familiar with the figures for the debt, because she didn’t read what she voted through), Nikos Kotsias the new reckless foreign minister (George Papandreou’s Foreign Minister, Pagalo’s helper, and Mr. Papandreou’s secretary – has been Pagalos-trained for many years).

It seems that the failed and fatal, neo-liberal Papandreou prescription will be restyled and ensured, instead of seriously questioned and condemned by those ministers. We see a poorly disguised PASOK, governing Greece now.

In Soro’s service  

The new finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, revealed in his very first interview as a finance minister – given to BBC by the way, and not to a Greek channel – for who he really work and on whose behalf he really will negotiate. It stands clear that he is in this position to ensure and protect Soro’s, Levi’s & Co interests, and not to really negotiate on behalf of the Greek people. He is not there to, with the support in constitutional and international law and UN resolutions, question the debt. He is not there to demand a legal and financial investigation of the debt and the neo-colonial agreement with the Eurogroup/IMF/ECB.  Even if that was one of the clear, actual assignments, from the people. With a few leftish, ‘cosmetic’ adjustments, and some socioeconomic ‘lollipops’ to the suffering, he will try to pass a new kind of “Memorandum”, a permanent one.

He will do this by continuing the Papandreic reasoning. This Narcissus, didn’t call the Greeks lazy, as Papandreou did, but he was equally degrading when he indirectly acknowledged the debt, instead of telling the truth to the Europeans, about the ‘Greek loans’. He should have! Because that’s what SYRIZA promised us. He felt instead that he had to calm down the nervous investors and the Eurogroup, before he could start posing as a “left” finance minister.

He actually deliberately lied to the Europeans, when he told them that they have ever paid one nickel from their pockets, for their governments loans to Greece. That their governments and their media have lied to them and told them that they tightened their citizens’ lives, because of the “lazy Greeks”, is an entirely different thing. That thing, is something that these citizens should take up with their governments, not with the Greeks. How are the Germans, the Slovenians and other European citizens paying for the Greeks?

Doesn’t Varoufakis know that Germany as a nation, borrowed Greece 15,2 billion euro within the framework of the “help-packages”, but made over 75 billion euro, only from the different interest rates on these loans? The loans that went to Greece was money that didn’t come from the citizens pockets, as this new finance minister implies. These countries governments borrowed money from the ECB with much lower interest rate than they lent to Greece. He also know more than well, that these countries didn’t lend Greece 240 billion euro in 5 years, but 55 billion euro, which 16 countries shared. The remaining 185 billion were provided by the EFSF, ie the temporary European Fund for controlled bankruptcy mechanism, which in its turn was borrowed from the markets by issuing its own debt securities. Thus they offered the citizens to speculate financially, to invest in another country’s bankruptcy, instead of asking them if they feel like supporting the EFSF or not. No one can ask the Greeks, neither legally nor morally, to feel any responsibility for the fact that these citizens lost money when they themselves accepted to speculate on people’s misery through such a disgusting pyramid game.

He didn’t tell the European citizens, that their governments actually made tens of billions of euros in profit by lending out money to Greece, and that they intentionally lied to them about it. 

SYRIZA promised the Greeks, that they would pass the message to the Europeans about this and not continue Papandreous blame games, while acting as the “hard negotiator”. Indeed an odd view our times “left-wing governments” have on the term, speaking on behalf of the people

We did not want the government to calm down the bankers and lenders. We wanted the government to upset them and determinedly and with the support of international law, really challenge them.

The European peoples hope against neo-liberalism?

If Tsipras have chosen to accommodate EU’s, the Euro-groups and the banker’s “wishlists”, he will not be well treated at all by the progressive parts of SYRIZA, the majority of their new voters and the bigger part of the Greek people. The majority of the voters voted for SYRIZA, for they committed themselves to “not back down” from the following promises: 

  • the condemnation and the demand for a judicial review, of the illegally imposed colonial loan agreements, in an international court
  • a radical, democratic change in the current party controlled, customer based, political system
  • the proper taxation of all the richest
  • all the responsible – domestic and foreign – for the Greek peoples suffering and Greece’s destruction, to be held to account in the court of law”, for their crimes

The Greek people will not be satisfied or trust any government, before it show in practice that it doesn’t back away from these people’s “red lines”, in all aspects of these four crucial questions.

Tsipras, should know – because most of his constituents and many of his party members know – that the main ongoing, immediate threats that daily deepens our concerns, fueling our anger and extend our grief are:

  • the enforced colonial agreements, the conditions and the debt serfdom of the Greek people (through the illegally signed resignation from any rights to defend its natural wealth, its sovereignty and its independence, on the demand of the Eurozone and Papandreou’s government),
  • the planned, systematic, impoverishment, exhaustion and humiliation of the Greek people
  • the increasing number of people who die as a direct result of ‘austerity’, all the suicides and the young migrating population
  • the dismantling of democracy, the human and the constitutional rights in Greece
  • the highly biased and propagandist media (that blatantly lies and instead of informing, withholds the truth from the people, polarize it and act like spokesmen for the Germany led, neo-liberal, neo-Nazi promoting and supporting, EU)

I will not comment at all on the small social-economic, tiny “soothers”. Once the above issues are treated with respect and according to the will of the people, I can feel myself compelled to applaud some of the ‘soothers’ too. I know that the submissive attitude towards the lenders were not at all what the Greeks voted for, nor a pimped Papandreou solution. We did not want the government to calm down the bankers and lenders, but to upset them. We wanted the government to determinedly challenge them, with the support of international law. But the Mr Kotsias, like any other of the current European moral cripples, they wave away international law, UN and international agreements and joins the psychopaths ‘war games’.

The Greek government foreign policy opened up for EU’s step two against Russia

One first positive thing, that could have been said about this government, would have been if Kotsias would have proceeded to the use of veto on the Ukraine issue, against the rest of EU. It would have been good if Greece’s media-baptized, “radical left” government, could have stopped the escalating involvement in the neo-Nazis massacres of the population of Ukraine, and not just adjust to the existing, highly toxic aggressiveness towards Russia. But the foreign minister Mr Kotsias (the Pangalos-apprentice) didn’t… He just pointed out some incorrect procedure and then he dropped the key comment “the sanctions do not work”, which in foreign policy language basically means we should proceed to the next step against Russia. He could have been the one who, with the support of international law and UN treaties, put his veto against “the EU’s ambition to be able to unilaterally declare war and start a war against a sovereign nation and from a third nation’s land”. That not a single representative, from any other member country, saw any problems with the fact that EU want to violate international law and existing UN treaties and resolutions, was not the problem according to Kotsias. But that they “ignored the prescribed procedure for Greece’s consent,” was certainly something he would not tolerate.

We know from historical facts that the comment “sanctions do not work” means let us go to step two. Airstrikes, drones, cluster bombs, create or support local “west-friendly ‘butchers and when that “does not work”, go to step three, land invasion (Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Argentina, Serbia, Somalia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Libya etc.). Only in cases where they did not dare to actually declare war, they continued with sanctions for decades, such as the Soviet Union, China, Cuba and North Korea. That the Greek government did not use its veto against the EU and its neo-liberal crusade against Russia, is a position that is in direct conflict with the majority of the Greek people’s view and so will every submissive, customer minded Greek government be.

No, I can not really understand why some evil-minded, suspicious people, strongly doubts that this really is “the European peoples best hope against the bankers, the EU’s neo-colonial austerity policies and the neo-Nazi, ethnic cleansings”? Can you?

 

Kosmas Loumakis

Stockholm 01-02-2015

 

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SYRIZA’s nya regering är bara PASOK “uppdaterat” – Soro’s utgåva

Η νέα κυβέρνηση

in English

Syriza-regeringens inre krets och dess första vecka ger inte mycket hopp.

Namnen i den nya grekiska regeringen som tillkännagavs i tisdags, gav många av oss rysningar. Även vi som inte trodde på alla löften, trodde åtminstone att genom att bli av med de hänsynslösa, föregående “Bryssel och Berlin-tjänarna”, skulle vi kunna andas ut.

Tvärtom tvingades vi plötsligt smälta faktumet att Tsipras i verkligheten, inte kan hålla många av sina främsta löften till folket. Inte med dessa nyliberala “Soro’s pojkar och flickor”, i den inre kretsen av ministrar och viceministrar.

Det råder ingen tvekan om att folkets röst i valet var ett ‘bra steg’, det var ett steg i rätt riktning, men det var verkligen inte något annat än ett endaste, litet steg. Och det steget beskrivs inte, av beslutet att rösta för en Tsipras-regering, utan av beslutet att bli av med Samaras-regeringen.

253D19293CCD065A27EEAE961B946818En kort analys gjordes redan förra måndagen av Dimitris Kazakis, ekonomen och generalsekreteraren för den demokratiska motståndsrörelsen E.PA.M (Enad Folklig Front). Han kommenterade några mycket misstänkta medlemmar i Syrizas ledning, några av de tidigare medlemmarna ur PASOK, de “smutsiga” medlemmarna med ett olöst förflutet. Han kommenterade dessa namn, eftersom de återfinns i minister och vice ministerposter och i förhandlingsgruppen för den nya regeringen. Efter en blick på namnen, förstår man att det är mer sannolikt att det kommer att bli sittningar av köpslagning, snarare än verkliga förhandlingar om Skulden, Åtstramningspolitiken och Demokratin. 

Han talar om ministrarna och medlemmarna i förhandlingsgruppen som, den nya finansministern, Yanis Varoufakis (en Soro’s “pojke”), vice premiärminister Giannis Dragasakis och ministern för infrastruktur, transport och turism, Georgos Stathakis, De här är de grekiska “Dalton bröderna från gamla PASOK “- Averel saknas, eftersom han startade sitt eget parti och fick 2,4%, från familj och “vänner”. Alla tre är bankirernas vargar. Så storbankirenas seger också i den här Europeiska’vänster-regeringen’, är uppenbar.

Han talar om,”förhandlaren” Nikos Christodoulakis (minister under Kostas Simitis, en av de mest hatade premiärministrarna för att han verkligen skuldsatta grekerna, med det ökända börs-bedrägeriet och diverse mut-skandaler), biträdande ministern för att bekämpa arbetslösheten, Rania Antonopoulou (från Levi Institute och aktiv i flera av George Soro’s organisationer), “förhandlaren” Louka Katseli (röstade för Memorandum I och sa efteråt att hon inte ens var bekant med siffrorna för skulden, för hon hade inte ens läst det hon röstat igenom), Nikos Kotsias den nya utrikesministern (var George Papandreou’s, utrikesminister, Pangalo’s hjälpreda, och även herr Papandreou’s rådgivare – han har blivit Pangalos-tränad i många år).

Det verkar som det misslyckade och dödliga, nyliberala Papandreou receptet skall stylas om och säkerställas, istället för att på allvar ifrågasätts och fördömas av dessa ministrar. Vi ser alltså endast ett dåligt förklätt PASOK regera Grekland nu.

I Soro’s tjänst 

Den nya finansministern, Yanis Varoufakis, avslöjade i sin allra första intervju som grekernas finansminister – som gavs till BBC förresten, och inte till någon grekisk kanal – för vem han verkligen jobbar och för vems räkning han i verkligheten kommer att förhandla. Det är uppenbart att han är där för att försäkra och skydda Soro’s, Levi’s & Co intressen, och inte för att verkligen förhandla för det grekiska folkets räkning. Han är inte där för att, med stöd av konstitutionell och internationell rätt och FN:s resolutioner, ifrågasätta skulden och kräva en rättslig och ekonomisk utredning av alla de nykoloniala avtalet med Eurogruppen/ IMF/ ECB. Även om just detta var ett av de klara, faktiska uppdragen ifrån folket. Med hjälp av ett fåtal vänsteraktiga, “kosmetiska” justeringar, och några socialekonomiska “slickepinnar” till de lidande, kommer han att försöka driva igenom ett nytt sorts “Memorandum”, ett permanent sådant.

Han kommer att göra detta, genom att fortsätta det nyliberala Papandreiska resonemanget. Denna Narcissus, kallade förvisso inte grekerna lata, som Papandreou gjorde, men han var lika kränkande när han indirekt erkände skulden, istället för att berätta sanningen om ‘de grekiska lånen’, för européerna. Det borde han gjort! För det är vad Syriza lovade oss. Han kände istället att han ville lugna ner de nervösa investerarna och Eurogruppen, innan han kunde börja posera som en “vänster-regerings” finansminister.

Han ljög faktiskt medvetet för européerna, när han sa till dem att de någonsin har betalat ett nickel från sina fickor för sina regeringars lån till Grekland. Att deras regeringar och deras media ljög för dem och sa till dem att det var p.g.a “grekernas lathet”, som man måste strama åt deras liv, är en helt annan sak. Den saken får dessa medborgare ta upp och göra upp med sina regeringar, inte med grekerna. Hur betalar tyskarna, slovenernas och andra EU-medborgare för grekerna?

Vet inte Varoufakis, att Tyskland som nation lånade Grekland 15,2 miljarder euro inom ramen för “hjälppaketen”, men tjänade över 75 miljarder euro, endast från de olika räntorna på dessa lån? De lån som gick till Grekland var pengar som inte kom från medborgarnas fickor, så som den här nya finansministern antyder. Dessa länders regeringar lånade pengar från ECB med betydligt lägre ränta än vad de lånat ut till Grekland. Han vet också mer än väl, att dessa länder inte lånade Grekland 240 miljarder euro under 5 år, utan 55 miljarder euro, som 16 länder delade på. Resterande 185 miljarder kom från EFSF, dvs den tillfälliga europeiska fonden för mekanismen för kontrollerad konkurs, vilka i sin tur lånades från marknaderna genom att man gav ut egna skuldebrev. Regeringarna erbjöd alltså sina medborgare att spekulera i skuld, att investera i, ett annat lands konkurs, istället för att fråga dem om de har lust att stödja EFSF eller ej. Ingen kan be grekerna att varken lagligt eller etiskt, känna något ansvar inför faktum att dessa medborgare förlorat pengar, när de själva accepterat att spekulera i människors elände genom ett sådant motbjudande pyramid spel.

Herr Varoufakis talade inte om för de europeiska medborgarna, att deras regeringar faktiskt har gjort tiotals miljarder euro i vinst genom att låna ut pengar till Grekland, och att de avsiktligt ljög för dem om det.

Syriza lovade grekerna, att de skulle vidarebefordra meddelandet om denna lögn till européerna och inte fortsätta Papandreous skuld-lekar, och samtidigt spela “de hårda förhandlarna”. Verkligen besynnerlig uppfattning, som vår tids “vänsterregeringar” har om begreppet, tala för folkets räkning.

Vi ville inte att regeringen skulle lugna ner bankirerna och långivarna. Vi ville att regeringen skulle uppröra dem och beslutsamt och med stöd i internationell rätt, verkligen utmana dem.

De europeiska folkens hopp emot ny-liberalismen?

Om Tsipras har valt att tillmötesgå EU’s, Eurogruppens och bankirernas “önskelistor”, kommer han inte att behandlas väl alls av de progressiva delarna av Syriza, majoriteten av sina nya väljare och större delen av det grekiska folket.

Majoriteten av väljarna röstade på SYRIZA för att de förband sig att “inte backa” från följande löften:

  • ett fördömande och krav om rättslig prövning, av de olagligt påtvingade koloniala låneavtalen, i internationell domstol
  • en radikal, demokratisk förändring i det nuvarande parti-topps-kontrollerade, kundbaserade, politiska systemet
  • den korrekta beskattningen av ALLA de rikaste
  • att alla de ansvariga – inhemska och utländska – för det grekiska folkets lidande och Greklands förstörelse, skall ställas till svars i domstol för sina brott

Det grekiska folket kommer inte att nöja sig och lita på någon regering, innan den visar i praktiken att den inte backar från dessa folkets “röda linjer”, i alla aspekter av dessa fyra mycket avgörande frågor.

Tsipras, borde veta – eftersom de flesta av hans väljare och många av hans partimedlemmar vet – att de viktigaste pågående, omedelbara hoten som dagligen fördjupar vår oro, spär på vår vrede och förlänger vår sorg är:

  • de påtvingade koloniala avtalen, villkoren och det grekiska folkets skuldlivegenskap (genom en olagligen undertecknad resignation från alla rättigheter att försvara naturrikedomar, suveränitet och självständighet, på begäran av Eurozonen och Papandreous regering)
  • den planlagda, systematiska, utarmningen, utmattningen och förnedringen av det grekiska folket
  • det ökande antalet människor som dör som direkt följd av ‘åtstramningarna’, alla självmorden och den utvandrande unga befolkningen
  • nedmonteringen av demokratin, mänskliga och konstitutionella rättigheter i Grekland
  • de mycket partiska och propagandistiska medierna (som uppenbarligen ljuger och istället för att informera, undanhåller sanningen från folket, polariserar det och agerar som talesman för det Tysklands-ledda, nyliberala, nynazist-främjande och -stödjande, EU)

Jag kommer inte att kommentera alls på de små socialekonomiska, ynka “tröstnapparna”. När ovanstående frågor behandlas med respekt och enligt folkets önskan kan jag känna mig manad att applådera några av ‘tröstnapparna’ också. Jag VET att den undergivna attityden mot långivarna inte alls var vad den grekerna röstade för och inte heller en pimpad Papandreou-lösning. Vi ville inte att regeringen skulle lugna ner bankirerna och långivarna, utan att oroa dem. Vi ville att regeringen målmedvetet skulle utmana dem, med stöd i internationell folkrätt. Men Herr Kotsias, precis som alla andra av de nuvarande fega, moraliska krymplingarna till utrikesministrar, så viftar han bort folkrätten, FN-konventioner och internationella fördrag och stämmer in i psykopaternas krigslekar.

Grekiska regeringens utrikespolitik öppnade vägen för EU’s steg två mot Ryssland 

En första positiv sak, som kunde ha sagts om denna regering, skulle varit om Kotsias gått vidare till att använda sitt veto i Ukraina frågan, emot resten av EU. Det skulle nämligen ha varit bra om Greklands medie-döpta “radikala vänster”, kunde ha stoppat den eskalerande inblandningen i nynazistiska massakrer av befolkningen i Ukraina och inte bara anpassa sig till den befintliga, mycket giftiga aggressiviten emot Ryssland. Men det gjorde inte utrikesminister Kotsias (Pangalos-lärlingen)… Han påpekade bara några felaktiga ordningsrutiner och släppte sedan nyckel-kommentaren  “sanktionerna fungerar inte”, som i  utrikespolitiskt språk betyder vi bör gå vidare till nästa steg mot Ryssland. Han skulle kunnat varit den som, med stöd i grundläggande internationella lagar och FN-fördrag, lagt sitt veto emot “EU’s strävan till att ensidigt kunna förklara krig och starta krig emot en suverän nation. Att inte en enda representant från något annat medlemsland, såg några problem med faktum att EU vill bryta emot internationell rätt och befintliga FN-fördrag och resolutioner, var inte problemet enligt Kotsias. Men att de “ignorerade det föreskrivna förfarandet för Grekland samtycke”, var något han minsann inte skulle tåla.

Vi vet genom historiska fakta att kommentaren “sanktionerna fungerar inte” betyder låt oss gå till steg två. Flyganfall, drönare, kluster-bomber, skapa eller stödja lokala “väst-vänliga” slaktare och när det “inte fungerar”, gå till steg tre, mark invasion (Korea, Vietnam, Kambodja, Argentina, Serbien, Somalia, Afghanistan, Irak, Libanon, Syrien, Libyen etc.). Endast i de fall då man inte vågade att de facto gå till attack, fortsatte man med sanktionerna  i flera årtionden, som exempelvis emot Sovjetunionen, Kina, Kuba och Nordkorea. Att den grekiska regeringen inte använde sitt veto mot EU och dess nyliberala korståg mot Ryssland, är en position som är i direkt konflikt med majoriteten av det grekiska folkets uppfattning och det kommer alla undergivna, kund sinnade grekiska regeringar vara.

Nä, jag kan verkligen inte förstå, varför några illasinnade, misstänksamma personer, starkt tvivlar på att de här verkligen är “de europeiska folkens bästa hopp emot bankirerna, EU:s nykoloniala åtsramnings-politik och de nynazistiska, etniska rensningarna”? Kan du?

 

Kosmas Loumakis

Stockholm 01-02-2015

 

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Historic Victory for SYRIZA Greece – SYRIZA Faces Herculean Task

Leo Panitch says it is the first left party to come to power since the 2007-2008 crisis of neoliberalism

Dimitri Lascaris says breaking up the troika and the power of oligarchs that control Greece is not going to be an easy task

Syriza triumphs: Cameron defends austerity, British left say ‘hope has won’

Published time: January 26, 2015 14:01

Alexis Tsipras, opposition leader and head of radical leftist Syriza party (R) and British Prime Minister David Cameron (L) (Reuters)

Alexis Tsipras, opposition leader and head of radical leftist Syriza party (R) and British Prime Minister David Cameron (L) (Reuters)

Syriza’s Greek election win has dealt a blow to Eurocrats’ austerity agenda. As the European left celebrated the triumph, UK Prime Minister David Cameron warns the result will prompt further “economic uncertainty” in Europe.

Cameron made the comment after Syriza beat Greece’s ruling center-right New Democracy party in Sunday’s election, paving the way for a potential confrontation with international creditors.

Throughout its electoral campaign, the left-wing party pledged a series of deeply transformative policies.

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras vowed to renegotiate Greece’s £179 billion bailout, and address clauses that make the Greek government’s implementation of harsh austerity measures mandatory.

He also said the party would demand the cancellation of over 50 percent of Greek debt owed predominantly to the ECB and Eurozone states, and place a new debt deal with the EU at the heart of its agenda.

As Syriza swept the ruling conservative New Democracy party from power, warnings that incoming Greek PM Tsipras’s party will prompt a crisis in the euro began to circulate.

‘There is no alternative’

Reflecting on the anti-austerity party’s electoral triumph, Cameron said the UK must stick to its economic plan of fiscal rectitude. In a climate of increasing economic insecurity in Europe, British policy makers must strive to deliver “security at home,”he warned.

View image on Twitter

Chancellor George Osborne suggested Syriza’s radical demands will require Greece’s exit from the eurozone.

He said the anti-austerity party’s pre-electoral mandate would be “very difficult” to deliver on and is ultimately “incompatible with what the eurozone currently demands of its members.”

In an effort to defend the austerity agenda that underpins his long-term economic plan for Britain, Osborne claimed Greek votes on Sunday weren’t against austerity, but against economic policies that had failed the Mediterranean state.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today program, the chancellor echoed Cameron’s stance that the election result would increase economic uncertainty in Europe.

But Euroskeptic UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader, Nigel Farage, took a more critical stance.

“Greece’s elections are a cry for help from those who have been impoverished by the euro,” he said.

Farage argued Syriza’s victory marked the beginning of a “game of poker” with German Chancellor and EU austerity architect Angela Merkel.

He also suggested the ECB will be “powerless” as this political game unfolds.

‘Hope has won’

Shadow Welsh Secretary Peter Hain said austerity hasn’t worked for Greece, for Britain or for the wider EU.

Lauding Syriza’s victory as “fantastic,” he argued investment in growth must replace savage cuts in Britain and Europe.

Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas, said “hope has won.”

She said she was “inspired” by the large proportion of Greeks who voted for Syriza, and that the time had come for the EU to listen to economists and Greek citizens and “respond with debt forgiveness and support.”

Head of radical leftist Syriza party Alexis Tsipras waves after winning elections in Athens, January 25, 2015 (Reuters / Alkis Konstantinidis)

Head of radical leftist Syriza party Alexis Tsipras waves after winning elections in Athens, January 25, 2015 (Reuters / Alkis Konstantinidis)

Left-wing comedian and political activist Russell Brand also weighed in, calling for a new party in Britain that could emulate Syriza’s radical position.

Brand said he would abandon his propensity not to vote if a similar party emerged on Britain’s political horizon.

In response to Cameron’s claim that Syriza’s victory would increase economic uncertainty in Britain and elsewhere, Brand said: “It will increase economic uncertainty for corporations, the city and you, ‘Dave.’”

View image on Twitter

Despite concern amid Eurocrats and financial institutions that a Syriza victory could spell disaster for the eurozone and the euro itself, European stocks have remained relatively stable since Sunday.

Analysts suggest recent European Central Bank stimulus measures pursued by the bank’s chief Mario Draghi have neutralized fears over the anti-austerity party’s victory.

‘Rage against the dying of the light’

Writing in the Spectator magazine, Swedish economist Frederick Erixon said Greece’s election result had inevitably paved the way for “turbulence ahead, both in Greek and eurozone politics.”

But Yanis Varoufakis, a leading economics professor based in Athens, contests this view.

He argues, “Greek democracy resolved to rage against the dying of the light” on Sunday in a bid to place Greece on a path of “sustainable prosperity.”

“The people of Greece gave a vote of confidence to hope.”

“They used the ballot box, in this splendid celebration of democracy, to put an end to a self-reinforcing crisis that produces indignity in Greece and feeds Europe’s darkest forces.

While it remains unclear whether Greece will leave the euro, how Syriza’s policies will affect the single market currency and what they will mean for Britain and eurozone member states in the long term, one thing is certain: Syriza have proved it’s possible to build a successful political movement that can challenge austerity, and the governments and international creditors that propel it.

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras will be officially sworn in on Monday afternoon as Greece’s new prime minister.

As his party begins its task of restructuring Greece’s political and economic position on a fraught European stage, leftist parties in Britain and Europe will be watching closely.

2015 – The Dangers Ahead

09.Jan.2015 |by SCG

A quick look at the minefield we are walking into in 2015

Where are we headed in 2015? According to a new Associated Press-Times Square Alliance poll, 48% of Americans believe that 2015 will be a better year than 2014 was, while only 11% think it will be worse. Is this (vague) optimism realistic? Does it take into account the events unfolding around the world right now? Let’s take a look at our current trajectory.

The Ukraine War

The war in Ukraine isn’t over. Relations between the U.S. and Russia are more tense than they’ve been since the Cuban missile crisis, and the stakes are getting higher in each round.

Kiev has put their so called “anti-terrorist” operations in eastern Ukraine mostly on hold for the winter (though shelling has continued), and they’ve engaged the separatists in peace talks, but many believe that this is just a ploy to give them time to regroup and rearm (with some help from Washington).

These aren’t just empty suspicions. In December, the Ukrainian government announced their intention to double their military budget and conscript 40,000 new soldiers for an offensive against the East. Also the U.S. government is moving to supply the Ukrainian government with more weapons and training over the next year.

When such an offensive would kick off is uncertain, but we’ll be watching events in the region closely as Spring approaches.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-12-22/leaders-agree-on-more-ukraine-p…

One of the most important signals heading into 2015 was the Ukrainian government’s decision toannul their nonaligned status with NATO in December of 2014. This doesn’t mean that NATO membership will be granted right away (France & Germany have voiced their oposition), but it is a sign that they intend to make a bid.

Why is this dangerous? Because the NATO agreement compels each of its members to defend all other members militarily if attacked. Now we saw Washington’s muppets in Kiev claiming that they were being invaded by Russia over and over throughout 2014. No evidence was provided, but the U.S. government and their lapdogs in the media repeatedly took their claims at face value andused them as talking points against Russia (which is after all the real target here). If Ukraine were a NATO member these claims could trigger military deployments. Considering the fact that this is a scenario that NATO is actively preparing for, this has to be taken seriously.

The Oil Price Squeeze

We can’t talk about the showdown with Russia without looking at the dramatic drop in oil prices that began in 2014. Obviously there are conflicting narratives on this topic, but according to Guardian and SALON (What really happened in Beijing: Putin, Obama, Xi — and the back story the media won’t tell you), in September of 2014 John Kerry instructed the Saudis to raise production and to cut its crude price.

Now the Saudis have indicated that they have no intention of slowing down oil production anytime soon, but the elephant in the room here is U.S. oil production from fracking, which has been dramatically ratcheted up as well.

This move might seem absurd since it is going to hurt U.S. oil producers as well, but it is clearly going to hurt Washington’s key opponents (namely Iran, Venezuela and Russia) far more since their economies are far less diversified.

The drop in oil prices has already had a massive impact on the value of the Rubble and combined with the sanctions there is a good chance the Russian economic situation could degrade even more in the coming year.

The drop in the Rubble has also interfered with Russia’s efforts to establish trade agreements which bypass the dollar. With the Rubble going through bouts of hyperinflation, even their closest allies are hesitant to accept payments in Rubbles.

You’ll hear people (like CFR member Ian Bremmer) describe Russia as a dangerous, wounded beast that may do something unpredictable. That’s like a teenager poking a bear with a sharp stick and then warning that the bear might bite. Yes it might bite, so stop poking it.

The Syrian War

The conflict in Syria isn’t going away. In fact 2014 was the most deadly year on record, with some76,000 killed.

U.S. airstrikes will continue in 2015, but they won’t destroy ISIS, or even weaken it significantly. Though ISIS established its position with the help of U.S. arms and funding, at this point they seem to have procured their own revenue streams through taxation and oil sales. In the long run this makes them a liability, but in the short term ISIS is doing most of Washington’s dirty work by weakening Assad.

The Syrian government will most likely continue to slowly weaken throughout 2015. We could however, see some surprises that completely alter the playing field. For example ISIS might make good on their threats to attack targets in the West.

Remember the group did get a hold of 88 pounds of uranium in Iraq this past summer. In December of 2014 ISIS announced that not only have they built dirty bombs with this material, but that theyhad already smuggled them into Europe.

Now, dirty bombs aren’t all that deadly, but people don’t need to be in real physical danger in order to panic. An event like this would put a full fledged invasion of Syria on the table, and would obviously be used to justify an even greater expansion of surveillance and police powers.

Watch “The Covert Origins of ISIS“ for more on this topic.

Ebola

The Ebola story has obviously dropped off the mainstream radar, but it didn’t go away in the real world, and the chart is still moving in the same direction (up).

Sierra Leone has dramatically escalated their containment effort, but according to the Red Cross, the number of cases has in fact spiked in recent weeks, and the situation is far from being under control. Liberia has also seen a resurgence of cases in the past month, and 800 aid workers have been infected at this point with 500 of them dying.

The virus is mutating as fast (or faster than) the seasonal flu, so, every day that it remains active in west Africa, increases the chances of a game changing adaptation. Until this Ebola is completely eradicated, it remains a dangerous wildcard heading into 2015. Remember this entire outbreak began with one case.

Watch “Ebola – Fear, Lies & The Evidence” for more information on this topic.

Racial Tensions in the U.S.

Heading into 2015 race relations in the U.S. are a gas can waiting for a match. You can’t predict the kinds of events that act as sparks, but we’ve seen from 2014 that the threshold for outrage (and violence), is getting lower. This trend isn’t likely to reverse in the coming year.

The danger on this front heading into 2015 is not so much physical, but rather that it could deepen divisions and make it totally impossible to unify the people against their common enemy. Who benefits from that scenario?

The TPP and TTIP

In the realm of politics, as a lame duck president, Obama himself is a wildcard. Though his influence is declining and he may not be able to get much through Congress at this point, he has already made it very clear that he is willing to use executive orders, and he really has nothing to lose. 2015 presents a window of opportunity to push through unpopular policies before the media starts hyping the 2016 elections.

The fact that Obama has nothing to lose in 2015 is likely to factor in on issues like the TPP (whichObama says he intends to support in spite of resistance from the left), he also supports the TTIPwhich is slated for a renewed push in 2015 as well.

These agreements contain provisions which would hand even more power to multi-national corporations, and implement SOPA and CISPA through backdoor channels.

The only reason we know anything about these treaties is from leaked drafts. The negotiations are being conducted in secret, and the final versions could end up being much worse.

Conclusion

The future isn’t set in stone (at least until the concrete dries). Every choice we make, influences the world around us, sometimes in ways we couldn’t even begin to imagine. Let’s go into 2015 with our eyes open and make the best of what comes.

 

 

source 

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The Only ‘No-Go Zones’ Are Found in Fox News’ Fantasyland

Roubaix, France (cc photo: Kathryn Burrington)

Life in the “no-go zone”: Roubaix, France (cc photo: Kathryn Burrington)

Fox News pundit Steve Emerson drew international ridicule for claiming Birmingham, England, was a “no-go zone” for non-Muslims (FAIR Blog,1/12/15). But he was far from alone on Fox in advancing this xenophobic fantasy of urban areas lost to Western civilization.

Fox generally characterized these “no-go zones” as isolated, predominantly Muslim areas under Sharia law that are breeding grounds for terrorists. Critically, they claimed that police and other non-Muslims were barred entry from such neighborhoods.

As supposed proof of these “no-go zones,” Fox pointed to French government lists of officially designated Zones urbaines sensibles,  or “sensitive urban zones.” In reality, these are not areas that the French have ceded to Islamists, but rather neighborhoods targeted for urban redevelopment and eligible for special tax incentives, similar to the US “enterprise zone” concept.

But reality didn’t hold back Fox host Sean Hannity (1/8/15), who while law enforcement was still pursuing the perpetrators of the Paris attack asked a correspondent this leading question:

Are the police also searching in these areas that we call the no-go zones, where non-Muslims are usually not allowed, not even police and fire departments, usually? Are those the areas that they’re searching right now?

Correspondent Amy Kellogg neither confirmed or denied Hannity’s dubious description of “no-go zones.”

The next day on Hannity (1/9/15), Jihad Watch director Robert Spencer, aleading proponent of Islamophobia, elaborated on these “no-go areas”: “Essentially, the police have no authority, the French state has no authority, and Islamic law prevails. These places are incubators!”

On Fox & Friends (1/10/15), journalist Nolan Peterson claimed he “witnessed young men wearing Osama Bin Laden T-shirts” in one of these zones. (He would later issue a partial apology, claiming he was only describing his 2005 trip to Paris.)

Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer (Special Report, 1/14/15) claimed that certain terrorist groups “have the small elements in the small no-go zones in Europe, especially in France. And that is the new territory of Islamism.” Although host Bret Baier informed Krauthammer that the French government rejected the term “no-go zone,” Krauthammer dismissively replied, “That’s what they say,” insisting these areas are “ruled by either gangsters or by Sharia and clerics” due to the lack of police.

Perhaps to add European credibility to its flimsy claims, Fox invited Nigel Farage (Hannity, 1/12/15), the leader of the far-right anti-immigrant UK Independence Party, to confirm, “We’ve got no-go zones in most of the big French cities.”

The UK’s Telegraph (1/15/15) dedicated a story to debunking Farage’s claims. Guillaume Delbar, the mayor of Roubaix–a “sensitive urban zone” with the largest Muslim population in France–called Farage’s claims “simply nonsense,” while an unnamed young resident retorted: “That is just bullshit! I can only laugh.”

L'Olympic Cafe, Goutte d'Or (cc photo:  Gilles Klein)

“The new territory of Islamism”: L’Olympic Cafe, Goutte d’Or (cc photo: Gilles Klein)

The Local (1/15/15) interviewed residents of La Goutte d’Or, a sensitive urban zone within Paris, to test Fox News‘ claims. According to the report, every resident disagreed with Fox News‘ antagonistic characterizations, with many characterizing La Goutte d’Or is welcoming. “A Muslim in his twenties added that anyone calling neighborhoods in Paris ‘no-go zones’ were racist,”  The Local reported.

But another resident delved deeper as to why Paris is segregated into sensitive urban zones:

I think this is because officials in Paris are trying to push the poorer population to the edges of the city and to the suburbs by tearing down old buildings and replacing them with newer, more expensive ones that those people can’t afford any longer.

So instead of being communities of terrorism, these “no-go zones” appear to be neighborhoods with typical urban struggles of poverty and gentrification.

Bloomberg Businessweek (1/14/15) also debunked Fox News‘ “no-go zone” alarmism. Notably, it quoted Middle East Forum president Daniel Pipes, who credited himself as the coiner  of the “no-go zone” phrase in 2006. Pipes now says, based on his definition as “a place where the government has lost control and cannot enforce the rule of law,” that there are “no European countries with no-go zones.”

 In 2013, Businessweek related, Pipes observed after a tour of immigrant and Muslim neighborhoods in Paris and five other European cities:

For a visiting American, these areas are very mild, even dull. We who know the Bronx and Detroit expect urban hell in Europe, too, but there things look fine…hardly beautiful, but buildings are intact, greenery abounds and order prevails…. Having this first-hand experience, I regret having called these areas no-go zones.

Clearly, Fox News didn’t get the memo.

FALSE FLAG 101: From Gladio To Hebdo – A SGT Report

From the CIA-NATO run Operation Gladio, to 9/11 to the 7/7 bombings in London to Sandy Hook to Charlie Hebdo and most points in between, a majority of the terror events through which we suffer are planned and carried out by intelligence agencies and their minions. As the mainstream mockingbird media gleefully parrots the official story in every case, appealing to our emotions instead of our intellect, we ask WHY? THIS is why.

NEWS ARTICLES MENTIONED:

PARIS SIEGE PATSIES LIQUIDATED – Webster Tarpley
http://sgtreport.com/2015/01/webster-…

GLADIO REVISITED – Corbett Report
http://sgtreport.com/2013/02/gladio-r…

Charlie Hebdo And Tsarnaev’s Trial: Cui Bono?
http://sgtreport.com/2015/01/charlie-…

21st Century Wire: Paris Siege: New ‘Anti-Semitic’ and ‘Al-Awlaki’ Narratives Emerge
http://sgtreport.com/2015/01/paris-do…

MH17 FALSE FLAG, PUBLIC ENEMY PUTIN & THE BANKSTER’S NEW WORLD WAR
http://sgtreport.com/2014/08/mh17-fal…

For REAL News & Information:
http://sgtreport.com/
http://thelibertymill.com/

 

Paris Attackers Funded by Pentagon Dinner Guest, and 5 Other ”Coincidences”

Tony Cartalucci

Activist Post

Corroborating claims by French security agencies, a bizarre interview conducted just before the death of terror suspect Chérif Kouachi reveals that he had been in Yemen and in direct contact with none other than Anwar Al Awlaki – the notorious Al Qaeda leader allegedly killed in a drone strike in Yemen in 2011.

Image: The Kouachi brothers, arrested twice for terrorism, convicted and imprisoned for terrorism, having met senior leadership of Al Qaeda, having trained with and fought alongside Al Qaeda, French intelligence would – 6 months ago -

 

The UK Mirror in an article titled, “Paris shootings: Listen to terrorist Amedy Coulibaly’s bizarre conversation with hostage during supermarket siege,” quoted Kouachi as saying:

We are just telling you we are the defenders of the prophet and that I Chérif Kouachi have been sent by Al Qaida of Yemen and that I went over there and that Anwar Al Awaki financed me.

Not only was Anwar Al Awlaki a senior leader in Al Qaeda, he also infamously spent dinner with top brass at the Pentagon shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks in Washington, New York, and over Pennsylvania.

CBS News would report in their article, “Qaeda-Linked Imam Dined at Pentagon after 9/11,” that:

Anwar al-Awlaki – the radical spiritual leader linked to several 9/11 attackers, the Fort Hood shooting, and the attempted Christmas Day bombing of an airliner – was a guest at the Pentagon in the months after 9/11, a Pentagon official confirmed to CBS News.

Awlaki was invited as “…part of an informal outreach program” in which officials sought contact “…with leading members of the Muslim community,” the official said. At that time, Awlaki was widely viewed as a “moderate” imam at a mosque in Northern Virginia.

At the same time, the FBI was also interviewing Awlaki about his contacts with three of the 9/11 attackers – Nawaf al-Hazmi, Khalid al Midhar and Hani Hanjour – who were all part of the crew of five that hijacked the American Airlines jet that hit the Pentagon.

Image: Just another coincidence … Senior Al Qaeda leader Anwar Al Awlakiwas clicking glasses together at the Pentagon with American military brassjust months after the 9/11 attacks in 2001. Also, “coincidentally,” he had infact met at least one of the several alleged hijackers. He also, just before being liquidated by a US drone attack in 2011, allegedly funded the terror cell
responsible for the recent Paris shootings. 

 

Indeed, Anwar Al Awlaki would admit to having met Hazmi – in yet another incident the general public is supposed to believe is simply an astonishing coincidence.

The list of “coincidences” and “accidents” is so far impressive and include the following:

1. French authorities arrested and imprisoned Chérif Kouachi in 2005 for terrorism. He would be released in 2008 after sentencing was suspended for “time served,” this despite evidence suggesting Kouachi may have even gone as far with his plot as travel to Yemen. Slate Magazine would report in their article, “The Details of Paris Suspect Cherif Kouachi’s 2008 Terrorism Conviction,” that:

Kouachi was arrested in January 2005, accused of planning to join jihadists in Iraq. He was said to have fallen under the sway of Farid Benyettou, a young “self-taught preacher” who advocated violence, but had not actually yet traveled to Iraq or committed any acts of terror. Lawyers at the time said he had not received weapons training and “had begun having second thoughts,” going so far as to express “relief” that he’d been apprehended.

2. Kouachi and brother Said would be implicated in another terrorist plot again in 2010 but were not prosecuted due to a lack of evidence. The BBC in their report titled, “Charlie Hebdo attack: Suspects’ profiles,” would state:

In 2010 Cherif Kouachi was named in connection with a plot to spring another Islamist, Smain Ait Ali Belkacem, from jail – a plot hatched by Beghal, according to French anti-terror police.

Belkacem used to be in the outlawed Algerian Islamic Armed Group (GIA) and was jailed for life in 2002 for a Paris metro station bombing in 1995 which injured 30 people.

Said Kouachi, 34, was also named in the Belkacem plot, but the brothers were not prosecuted because of a lack of evidence.

3. With French intelligence agencies’ knowledge, the Kouachi brothers would then travel to Yemen in 2011, receiving weapons training directly from Al Qaeda.  CNN’s report titled, “France tells U.S. Paris suspect trained with al Qaeda in Yemen,” would report:

A U.S. official says the United States was given information from the French intelligence agency that Said Kouachi traveled to Yemen as late as 2011 on behalf of the al Qaeda affiliate there. Once in Yemen, the older brother of the two received a variety of weapons training from al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) — the affiliate in Yemen — the official said, including on how to fire weapons. It is also possible Said was trained in bomb making, a common jihadist training in Yemen. Two other U.S. officials confirmed that information about the Yemeni travel was passed to the U.S. from French intelligence agencies.

In addition, French Justice Minister Christiane Taubira told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in an interview broadcast on CNN International that one of the brothers traveled to Yemen in 2005. Taubira would not say which brother.

Admissions that one of the brothers had traveled to Yemen in 2005, suggests the possibility he may indeed have received weapons training from Al Qaeda before his arrest and imprisonment later that same year.

4. It was reported that the brothers then fought in Syria before returning last summer, approximately 6 months ago. USA Today would report in an article titled, “Manhunt continues for two French terror suspects,” that:

The brothers were born in Paris of Algerian descent. Cherif was sentenced to three years in prison on terrorism charges in May 2008. Both brothers returned from Syria this summer. 

5. Also about 6 months ago, French intelligence decided the suspects’ serial offenses along with their direct contact with Al Qaeda – including the receiving of terrorist training and battlefield experience fighting along side them in Syria – were “low risk” cases and therefore not worthy of their attention.

Astoundingly, UK’s Daily Mail would report in their article, “Revealed: Police stopped watching Paris killers six months ago after terror cell of kosher deli attacker and his crossbow jihadi wife – who has fled to Syria – were deemed ‘low-risk’,” that:

The world’s most wanted female terrorist has fled to Syria, it was revealed last night – as police admitted they stopped surveillance on her deadly Parisian cell six months ago because they were deemed ‘low-risk’.

The Daily Mail would go on to report on other cell members including Amedy Coulibaly, also killed by police during the recent shootings and attacks in Paris – also a notorious serial offender, known terrorist, and also previously arrested, convicted, and sentenced to prison for terrorism.

Who decided this cell was “low risk” six months ago? That is probably where the French people should begin searching for justice – if justice is in fact what they seek.

Six months, coincidentally, is also about the typical length (6-10 months) of security and intelligence “sting operations” targeting terrorists. It provides an appropriate time frame within which an event like the recent attacks could have been planned, funded, and eventually carried out. The public is expected to believe this obvious terror cell who had been in and out of prison for terrorism over the course of a decade and in direct contact with Al Qaeda, was suddenly dropped from the attention of French intelligence just in time for them to carry out their most spectacular crime to date?

Who decided this cell was “low risk” six months ago? That is probably where the French people should begin searching for justice – if justice is in fact what they seek.

Europe Has Been Here Before 

Unfortunately, these “coincidences” and “accidents” are not coincidences and accidents at all. They fit an obvious pattern of staged provocations within the context of an intentionally engineered “strategy of tension,” identical but scaled up from what NATO was exposed to have committed during the Cold War as part of its “stay behind networks,” more commonly known as “Operation Gladio.”

Indeed, if NATO could carry out attacks during the Cold War, targeting Western Europeans in deadly brutality designed to appear as the work of NATO’s enemies, why would NATO now be suddenly excused from the investigation as a prime suspect? With the “coincidences” and “accidents” described above, those occupying the highest of France’s political, military, and intelligence offices, should be removed, tried, and imprisoned for criminal negligence at the very least.

As the puzzle pieces continue to fit together, the picture that appears is one of brazen, intentional provocation either to divide society at home, or wage war abroad, or both. And as this picture comes into focus, the rhetoric designed to distract the public from seeing it will reach a fever pitch.

Tony Cartalucci’s articles have appeared on many alternative media websites, including his own at
Land Destroyer Report, Alternative Thai News Network and LocalOrg.

Read other contributed articles by Tony Cartalucci here.

Some European Bloodbaths Are More Interesting Than Others

On July 24, 2011, two days after Anders Breivik slaughtered 77 people, mostly teenagers, in Norway to call attention to his view that Muslim immigration was a bad thing, NBC‘s Meet the Press didn’t mention the words “Breivik” or “Norway.” Nor did CBS‘s Face the Nation.

On ABC, This Week With Christiane Amanpour–who prided herself on her international perspective–did have 258 words on the massacre. No discussion, but we did hear there were “some incredible survivor stories.”

Fast forward three-and-a-half years, after another politically motivated killing spree in Europe, this one resulting in the deaths of 20 people. This European violence was decidedly more interesting to Meet the Press, which previewed its January 11 episode:

PARIS TERROR ATTACK: As the French authorities dissect how these horrific acts of violence were committed in the name of Islam, Chuck Todd will ask Attorney General Eric Holder how the US government is dealing with potential home-grown terrorists in this country….

PLUS: The attack on Charlie Hebdo once again highlights the vulnerability of the West to deadly terrorist attacks that can paralyze a major city. How does religion encourage some people to choose violence? And can these attacks be prevented? Our panels weigh in.

Face the Nation: Terror in Paris

At Face the Nation, hostBob Schieffer described his upcoming show on Bob’s Blog (1/9/15):

After a series of terror attacks in Paris that left more than a dozen people dead this week, many questions remain about the perpetrators and their motives.

But the big question in the United States is: Are we safe here at home? We’ll ask the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, Attorney General Eric Holder, who will appear on Face the Nation from Paris where he plans to attend an international summit on terrorism.

Holder will meet with top European officials to discuss one of the gravest challenges of our day: preventing Westerners from traveling to the Middle East, training with terror groups, and bringing their terror home.

We’ll also talk to Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee.

Then Scheiffer said he would bring on Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) to “discuss the GOP agenda, which in the House includes withholding funding for the Department of Homeland Security in protest of President Obama’s recent executive order on immigration. In light of the Paris terror attacks, is this really the right time for a showdown on funding the department that keeps us safe?”

Scheiffer also promised another segment that would talk about “bigger questions about the influence of radical Islam and how to prevent these ‘lone wolf’ incidents from continuing in the future.”

This Week: Terror in Paris

On This Week, the topic of the day was likewise to be “Terror in Paris”:

On Sunday, This Weekcovers the latest on the terror attack in Paris, with Attorney General Eric Holder, and Sen.Richard Burr, R-N.C., the new chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Why is that Islamist violence is drop-everything fascinating to US corporate media, while a bloodbath by a right-wing anti-Muslim zealot doesn’t seem to be even worth talking about? Is it because Muslims are the only people who commit political attacks in the United States? Well, no–the vast majority of political terrorism in the United States is perpetrated by non-Muslims (Extra!,5/11).

In fact, the day before the Charlie Hebdo attack, a bomb went off outside the NAACP office in Colorado Springs, which the FBI was investigating as a potential terrorist attack (Democracy Now!, 1/9/15). The person wanted for questioning in the incident is described as “a white male around the age of 40.” But don’t expect corporate media to spend much time discussing the possible threat posed by middle-aged white guys.

 

 

Looking Backward, Looking Forward: 2014 – 2015

petras

Introduction: The balance sheet for 2014 and the prospects for 2015 provide us with a complex panorama of negative and positive outcomes. In most cases the advances, are not earth-shattering but open possibilities for further progress. The negative developments, however, have greater and more threatening systemic outcomes.

We will proceed in a telegraphic fashion to outline the positive and negative developments in 2014 and their real and potential symbolic and substantive impacts. In the second part of the essay we will sketch out some of the most important events and the way in which the positive and negative outcomes of 2014 will play out in 2015.

Positive Developments in 2014

While most leftist and progressive writers have emphasized the negative events of 2014, a more nuanced analysis will reveal ten important positive outcomes.

(1) The revelations that the US National Security Agency was engaged in a world-wide long-standing and continuous spying operations against hundreds of millions of Americans, allies and adversaries, citizens and leaders provoked deep distrust and questioning of Washington’s claims of upholding democracy and respecting the sovereignty of nations. The revelations led to greater vigilance among countries and domestic demands for reform.

(2) The US Senate revelations that the CIA engaged in widespread and repeated torture of political suspects, documented the growth of a police state apparatus and provoked a world-wide demand to prosecute prominent US leaders for crimes against humanity.

(3) The growth of economic, political and military ties between Russia and China augurs a rebalancing of global power – fostering a multi-polar world, which can act as a deterrent to future western imperial aggression.

(4) China’s President Xi’s deepening anti-corruption campaign has led to the arrest of leading business and political leaders and has encouraged popular denunciations and demands for ‘good government’ and greater attention to social demands.

(5) President Putin’s support for the Eastern Ukraine resistance to the Kiev puppet regime and for Crimean separatists, and his moves to restrict and, in some cases, prosecute criminal behavior among oligarchs has successfully countered Western efforts to encircle, undermine and revert Russia to a vassal state. US-NATO backed neo-liberals within Russia have been severely weakened Western sanctions may strengthen efforts to socialize the economy.

(6) The opening of a dialogue with Cuba, and Washington’s recognition that its half century blockade has only isolated the US in Latin America, is a step in the right direction. The increase in tourism and economic missions may increase demands for the end of the blockade.

(7) The growth and spread of the Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS)against

the Israeli occupation of Palestine has reached major trade unions, student and religious organizations ,which in turn has influenced numerous political leaders to recognize Palestine, overcoming massive opposition from the Presidents of the 52 Major American Jewish organizations in the US and their counterparts overseas.

(8) The Iranian – US peace and nuclear negotiations have lessened the prospect of an Israeli promoted regional war. The ongoing negotiations have led to some advances, mostly concessions by Iran, but, at least, have favored diplomacy over US military aggression.

(9) Latin America witnessed a near sweep by ‘left of center’ regimes against US backed ‘hard right’ neo-liberals, in Brazil, Venezuela, Chile, Uruguay, Ecuador and Bolivia. While these election outcomes will not in any way challenge capitalism or lead to the expropriation of the agro-mineral and financial elite, they do indicate a relative degree of independence from US militarist foreign policy. The election of President Santos in Colombia, and the defeat of the far right opposition candidate, allowed for the peace negotiations with the FARC, the popular insurgency, to proceed toward a definitive agreement.

(10) The widespread dissemination of multi-media recordings of prominent scientists testifying to and documenting the evidence demonstrating that the collapse of the World Trade Center could only be a controlled demolition and not a result of the plane crashes, has led to widespread calls for a new investigation of 9/11.

Negative Events in 2014

Major events and policies in 2014 which have had a profoundly negative effect on the prospects for peace and social justice are equally numerous.

(1) The US and EU installation of a puppet regime in the Western Ukraine (Kiev) and its conversion into an economic vassal state of the European Union and NATO outpost on Russia’s border is a major blow against democracy and boost to Ukrainian neo-fascist political leaders. The militarization of the Ukraine, as an adversary of Russia, threatens a global nuclear war.

(2) The military coup in Egypt and the violent purge, jailing and torture of elected officials and secular dissidents, ensures the return of US influence in North Africa and reinforces Israel’s blockade of Gaza and colonization over the West Bank. Food and transport subsidies were ended in accord with the IMF. In 2014 as a result of the military dictatorship’s pro-business policies, the Egyptian stock market index returned 30% to foreign and domestic speculators. Between the coup in mid-2013 to the end of 2014, the M5CI stock index of Egypt doubled.

(3) The US re-entry in the Iraq civil war, its air war in Syria to counter the advance of ISIS, and the decision to retain thousands of troops in Afghanistan means that the militarist policies of the past decade continue to define US foreign policy in the Middle East. Civilian casualties are mounting and the wars are showing no signs of ending. The devastation wrought by the US-NATO military intervention in Libya continues to provoke Islamic extremism and civilian flight.

(4) US repeatedly supported Israeli seizures and colonization of Palestinian land in the West Bank and Jerusalem and Israel’s savage murder of 2000 Palestinians and 5 billion dollar devastation of property in Gaza. Under the prodding of Zionist multi-billionaires and AIPAC, the US blocked the PLOs effort to gain UN membership via arm-twisting of African representatives in the Security Council.

(5) The President and Congress’s defense of NSA spying and CIA responsibility for torture has further weakened residual constitutional guarantees.

(6) The electoral victories by the hard right in the US legislative elections will present major problems in proceeding with peace negotiations with Iran, in ending the economic blockade of Cuba and lessening the Government’s purge of immigrants.

(7) The Ferguson protest against the police assassination of a young black man grew into a nationwide protest (“black lives matter”) against the police impunity and violence, and had all the makings of a popular movement to democratize the state. Instead the police officials and police unions launched a massive counter-attack and mobilization, defending police power, by exploiting the killing of two policemen in New York City by a deranged individual.

(8) The US success in imposing sanctions against Russia, with the backing of the European Union, the escalation of military exercises on Russia’s Baltic frontiers and in the Caucuses, threaten a nuclear confrontation.

(9) Washington’s promotion of Asian-Pacific economic pacts excluding China, the military base agreements with Japan, Australia and the Philippines, and the expansion of provocative air and sea surveillance of China’s coastlines, has dimmed any prospect that Washington is willing to accommodate China’s ascent as a world power.

(10) Economic policies continue to concentrate wealth in the upper 1%, while investment bankers escape jail sentences for on-going multi-billion dollar swindles and illicit operations, laying the bases for a new financial crisis.

Looking Toward the New Year

The prognosis for 2015 is not promising. For one thing the positive changes that took place in 2014 are not sustainable and will be under threat by the further rightward shift in US policy.

The likelihood is that the new rightwing majority in Congress will do everything possible to prevent the ending of the US economic blockade of Cuba. The powerful Israel power configuration in the Congress, mass media and in the Treasury will likely impose such onerous and unilateral demands on Iran as to undermine any meaningful agreement. In Israel far right neo-fascist parties are likely to take power, early in 2015, and accelerate the seizure and colonization of Palestinian land foreclosing any prospects of a negotiated agreement. The Zionist power configuration in Washington will guarantee continued US backing.

The Obama Administration, blinded by its success in securing EU support for sanctions against Russia, will push harder for a full scale economic war, in hopes of overthrowing the Putin government.

Incremental increases in troops and military commitments in South Asia, the Middle East and the Baltic regions will further heighten economic tensions with China and North Korea as well as Russia.

Obama will work with the new rightwing Congress to lower corporate taxes, to secure fast track passage of free trade agreements with Europe (excluding Russia) and Asia (excluding China) and to strengthen the arbitrary police power of the CIA, NSA, and FBI.

The police, organized and mobilized, will further subordinate civilian authorities, and launch a full scale war on the movement to curtail police violence against Afro-Americans. New York City’s giant pro-police show of force is a dress rehearsal for 2015.

The US economy will become even more lopsided, unequal and subject to financial volatility. Middle and working class Americans will become further alienated from the parties, legislature and executive – abstention will increase. However, many Americans will struggle to elect popular representatives in local elections and initiatives.

Overseas the US will fail to secure any decisive military victory in any major theater of war. ISIS in Syria and Iraq is likely to continue to occupy wide swaths of territory and to sustain a long term war. The Taliban will eventually surround the big cities and garrisons in which US advisers are holed up. Libya will continue to be a failed sate. The Ukraine will likely descend into economic bankruptcy. In southern Europe the left-socialist party SYRIZA will probably win the elections and attempt to impose a moratorium on debt payments and stimulate the economy. The neo-liberal political regimes in Italy, Spain and Portugal will continue to deteriorate. In France the Socialist regime’s embrace of a pro-business agenda will provoke major conflicts with trade unions and may fracture. The National Front may become the leading party, adopting positions on the Right (anti-immigrant) and Left (anti EU austerity). Leftist, populist and far –right parties and movements are likely to increase support in eight scheduled elections in the EU this year.

Turmoil, wars, and sanctions will lead to new political alignments. Just as Russia and China move to realign, so too, political forces in North and South America, Asia and the Middle East may find new de facto alignments. Saudi and Israel, Iran and Iraq, Turkey and Russia, Brazil and Venezuela…

Unpredictable challenges may emerge from minor and major players: Greece’s new Syriza government, by refusing to abide by Berlin’s austerity agenda, may provoke a major crises in the EU. China’s anti-corruption campaign could lead to heighten mass protests. North and South Korea may open long sought negotiations – excluding the US.

With the beginning of 2015 we enter a journey to the end of the night…

Social Control

Our society is influenced and held together by a variety of forces. The uninitiated may be sceptical of the idea that certain forces—classes, organizations, interests—consciously seek to control society by controlling its citizens. Control can be simply built-in and institutional to a given system as well as specifically conspiratorial and conscious.

There is a dangerous tendency in US society to characterize the suspicion or study of controlling forces as “paranoid” and “delusional.” Instead, we are encouraged to simply “have faith” and not wonder about what or who is influencing our lives.

The often repeated attitude that “things are just crazy” or “nobody controls things” or “the world is just chaotic” is a particularly anti-intellectual, anti-questioning and anti-democratic perspective. This attitude seeks to unburden itself of responsibility for understanding its own world and doing anything to make it better.

Social control can range from covert policies of influence or manipulation to overt use of force—policing, incarceration, etc.

Agencies of the government, politicians, think tanks, lobbyists, corporations, individuals, etc.—nearly everyone seeks to control their world to a certain degree. But some are more systematic, sophisticated and influential in their efforts. Intelligence agencies such as the NSA and CIA have a mandate to exert influence in order to protect “national security.”

Sometimes we must remind ourselves that there are forces who plan and plot to control society in very sophisticated ways. Things do not just happen by chaos, much of our world is shaped and influenced in a very calculated way.

The essence of social control can be traced to influences over what people care about; what their values are, and what’s important to them. In the US, the messages of what to care about are very clear from birth: yourself, your status, your beauty, your wealth, your people, your country. While the focus is the individual, the values are all dictated from outside. We call this phenomenon “depersonalized narcissism”—the individual thinks and cares almost exclusively about “himself” but only in the externally, societally proscribed ways.

In reality, the supposed “self-interest” that motivates the individual in society is nothing of the sort. Instead, it is the programmed interest of those who have the power to impose their will upon the masses. This is true to the extent that millions of people continue to participate in an essentially “suicidal” system which is destroying our home planet and the ecosystems which sustain our species as well as all others.

Through television, advertising and the world around us, we are told what beautiful is, what success means, what is stylish, and what is “normal.” By what we do and do not see on television or in other media, we are taught what is important and what to think about. We have in-depth coverage of sports and celebrity gossip while environmental news is barely even mentioned.

Justifying our capitalist system is a strange economic concept that all individuals acting out of selfishness will result in the greatest good for the society as a whole. Think about that for a second. Does it make sense, in theory or practice? Is it in line with the values of any sort of religion? Why would selfishness be a good thing to base a society on?

US social control is much more sophisticated than outright authoritarianism. In fact, social control is so effective in the US mostly because people are taught not to be on the lookout for it. The forces of control have essentially kept us in a childlike mental state—helpless and dependant upon their authority.

Systems of social control have developed as a combination of evolutionary human traits, institutional structures, and outright conspiratorial machinations. Truth movers are dedicated to deconstructing social control, striving for true personal freedom, and encouraging others to do the same.

Examples of Social Control:

  • Spatial Deconcentration – a policy/theory explored after the urban riots of the 60s in order to control poor and minority uprisings. 2
  • Incarceration is one of the more blatant tools of social control. The United States has the hightest rate of incarceration of any country in the world. The “justice system” disproportionally affects poor and minority citizens.
  • “If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind, is it not possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will without their knowing about it?” – Edward Bernays, “the father of public relations” 3

 

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Imperialism and the Politics of Torture

petras

Introduction: The US Senate Report documenting CIA torture of alleged terrorist suspects raises a number of fundamental questions about the nature and operations of the State, the relationship and the responsibility of the Executive Branch and Congress to the vast secret police networks which span the globe – including the United States.


CIA: The Politics of a Global Secret Police Force

The Senate Report’s revelations of CIA torture of suspects following the 9/11 bombing is only the tip of the iceberg. The Report omits the history and wider scope of violent activity in which the CIA has been and continues to be involved. CIA organized large scale deathsquad activities and extreme torture in Vietnam (Phoenix Project); multiple assassinations of political leaders in the Congo, Chile, Dominican Republic, Vietnam, the Middle East, Central America and elsewhere; the kidnapping and disappearance of suspected activists in Iraq and Afghanistan; massive drug-running and narco-trafficking in the “Golden Triangle” in Southeast Asia and Central America (the Iran-Contra war).

The Senate Report fails to locate the current acts of CIA terror and torture in a broaderhistorical context – one which would reveal the systematic use of torture and violence as a ‘normal’ instrument of policy. Contrary to White House and Senate claims that torture was a “policy error” committed by “incompetent” (or deranged) operatives, the historical record demonstrates that the long term extensive and intensive use by the CIA of torture, assassinations, kidnappings are planned and deliberate policies made by highly qualified, and experienced policymakers acting according to a global strategy approved by both Executive and Congressional leaders.

The Report treats torture as a “localized” set of events, divorced from the politics of empire building. In point of fact, torture is and always has been an integral part of imperial wars, colonial military occupations and counter-insurgency warfare.

Imperial wars and occupations provoke widespread opposition and nearly unanimous hostility. ‘Policing’ the occupied country cannot rely on community-wide support, least of all providing voluntary ‘intelligence’ to the imperial officials. The imperial armed forces operate out of fortresses surrounded by a sea of hostile faces. Bribes and persuasion of local collaborators provides limited information, especially regarding the operations of underground resistance movements and clandestine activists. Family, neighborhood, religious, ethnic and class ties provide protective support networks. To break this web of voluntary support network, the colonial powers resort to torture of suspects, family members and others. Torture becomes “routinized” as part and parcel of policies sustaining the imperial occupation. Extended occupation and intensive destruction of habitation and employment, cannot be compensated by imperial “aid” – much of which is stolen by the local collaborators. The latter, in turn, are ostracized by the local population, and, therefore, useless as a source of information. The “carrot” for a few collaborators is matched by torture and the threat of torture for the many in opposition.

Torture is not publicized domestically even as it is ‘understood’ by ‘knowing’ Congressional committees. But among the colonized, occupied people, through word and experience, CIAand military torture and violence against suspects, seized in neighborhood round-ups, is aweapon to intimidate a hostile population. The torture of a family member spreads fear (and loathing) among relatives, acquaintances, neighbors and colleagues. Torture is an integral element in spreading mass intimidation – an attempt to minimize co-operation between an active minority of resistance fighters and a majority of passive sympathizers.

The Senate Report claims that torture was “useless” in providing intelligence. It argues that victims were not privy to information that was useful to imperial policymakers.

The current head of the CIA, John Brennan rejects the Senate claim, while blithely admitting “some errors” (underwater submergence lasted a minute too long, the electric currents to the genitals were pitched to high?), he argues that “torture worked”. Brennan argues that his torturer colleagues did obtain “intelligence” that led to arrests of militants, activists and “terrorists”.

If torture “works” as Brennan claims, then presumably the Senate and the President wouldapprove of its use. The brutalization of human life, of family members and neighbors is not seen as, in principle, evil and morally and politically repugnant.

According to the explicit rules of conduct of Brennan and the implicit beliefs of the Senate, only “useless” torture is subject to censure – if an address is obtained or a torture victim names a colleague a ‘terrorist’ to avoid further pain, then by the criteria of the Senate Report torture is justified.

According to the operational code of the CIA, international law and the Geneva Conventions have to be modified: torture should not be universally condemned and its practioners prosecuted. According to the Senate only torture that “doesn’t work” is reprehensible and the best judge of that is the head of the torturers, the CIA director.

Echoing Brennan, President Obama, leaped to the defense of the CIA, conceding that only some ‘errors’ were committed. Even that mealy mouth admission was forcibly extracted after the President spent several years blocking the investigation and months obstructing its publication and then insisting on heavily editing out some of the most egregious and perverse passages implicating NATO allies

The Senate Report fails to discuss the complicity and common torture techniques shared between Israel’s Mossad and the CIA and Pentagon. In defense of torture, the CIA and White House lawyers frequently cited Israel’s Supreme Court ruling of 1999 which provided the “justification “for torture. According to Israel’s Jewish judges, torturers could operate with impunity against non-Jews (Arabs) if they claimed it was out of “necessity to prevent loss of or harm to human life”. The CIA and Harvard law professor and uber-Zionist zealot, Alan Dershowitz echoed the Israeli Mossad “ticking time bomb” justification for torture, according to which “interrogators can employ torture to extract information if it prevents a bombing”. Dershowitz cited the efficiency of Israel’s torturing a suspect’s children.

The CIA officials frequently cited the Israeli ‘ticking bomb’ justification for torture in 2007, at Congressional hearings in 2005, and earlier in 2001 and 2002. The CIA knows that the US Congress, under the control of the Zionist power configuration, would be favorably disposed to any official behavior, no matter how perverse and contrary to international law, if it carried an Israeli mark of approval or ‘logo’.

The US CIA and Israeli’s Mossad share, exchange and copy each other’s’ torture methods. The US torturers studied and applied Israel’s routine use of sexual torture and humiliation of Muslim prisoners. Racist colonial Israeli tracts about techniques on destroying the ‘Arab Mind’ were used by US intelligence. Israeli officials borrowed US techniques of forced feeding hunger strikers. Mossad’s technique of ‘Palestinian hanging’ was adopted by the US. Above all, the US copied and amplified Israel’s extra-judicial ‘targeted’ killings – the center piece of Obama’s counter-terrorism policy. These killings included scores of innocent bystanders for every ‘successful target’.

The Senate Report fails to identify the intellectual authors, the leading officials who presided over and who ultimately bear political responsibility for torture.

Top leaders, Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and Senate Intelligence Committee chairperson, Diane Feinstein, resort to the Nazi war criminals plea “we didn’t know”, “we were misled” and “the CIA didn’t tell us”.

No judge at the Nuremberg Trials believed them. Nor will any international court of law believe US political leaders’ pleas of ignorance of the CIA’s decade-long practice of torture – especially after former Vice President Cheney lauded the practice on US television and boasted he would implement the same policies again. (One has to wonder about the ‘source’ of Cheney’s transplanted heart…)

During the administration of President Bush, Jr., CIA leaders submitted detailed reports on intelligence, including the sources and the methods of obtaining the information, on a routine basis – with videos and ‘live feeds’ for the politicians to view. Nothing was ‘held back’ then and now, as current CIA head John Brennan testifies. From 2001 onward torture was the method of choice, as testimony from top military officials revealed during the Abu Ghraib investigation.

National Security Agency (NSA) meetings, attended by the President, received detailed reports extracted from CIA “interrogations”. There is every reason to believe that every NSA attendee ‘knew’ how the ‘intelligence’ was obtained. And if they failed to ask it was because torture was a ‘normal, routine operating procedure’.

When the Senate decided to investigate the “methods of the CIA”, half a decade ago, it was not because of the stench of burning genitals. It was because the CIA exceeded the boundaries of Senate prerogatives –it had engaged in pervasive and hostile spying against US Senators, including the Uber-Senator Feinstein herself; CIA crimes were compromising client regimes around the world; and most of all because their orgy of torture and dehumanization hadfailed to defeat the armed resistance in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and Syria.

The Senate Report is an exercise in institutional power – a means for the Senate to regain political turf, to rein in CIA encroachment. The Report goes no further than to chastise “inappropriate” techniques: it does not proceed from crimes of state to prosecute officials responsible for crimes against international and domestic laws.

We know, and they know, and as every legal authority in the world would know, that withoutthe punishment of political leaders, torture will continue to be an integral part of US imperial policy: Impunity leads to recidivism.

Richard Cheney, Vice-President under President George W. Bush, notorious war criminal on many counts, and prime advocate of torture, publically declared on December 10, 2014 that President Bush specifically authorized torture. He bragged that they were informed in detail and kept up to date.

In the political world of torture, practiced by Islamic extremists and US imperialists, how does the decapitation of non-combatant prisoners, match up with the CIA’s refrigeration of naked political suspects? As for “transparency”, the virtue claimed by the Senate Report publicists in publishing the CIA’s crimes, as “refurbishing the US image”, the Islamists went one step further in “transparency”: they produced a video that went global, revealing their torture by beheading captives.

The Senate Report on CIA torture will not result in any resignations, let alone prosecutions or trials, because over the past two decades, war crimes, police crimes, spy crimes, and financial swindles have not been prosecuted. Nor have any of the guilty officials spent a day in court. They are protected by the majority of political leaders who are unconditional defenders of the CIA, its power, techniques and especially its torture of captives. The vast majority of Congress and the US President repeatedly approve over $100 billion annual budgets for the CIA and its domestic counterpart, Department Homeland Security. They approved the annual budget voted on December 10, 2014, even as the “revelations” rolled in. Moreover, as the tempest over CIA torture proceeds, Obama continues to order the assassination by drone of US citizens “without ever crossing the door of a judge”.

Despite over 6,000 pages of documents and testimony, recording crimes against humanity, theSenate Report is unlikely to trigger any reforms or resignations. This is not because of the actions of some mysterious “deep state” or because a ballooning national security apparatus has taken power. The real problem is that the elected officials, Presidents and Congress people, Democrats and Republicans, neo-liberals and neo-conservatives, are deeply embeddedin the security apparatus and they share the common quest for world supremacy. If Empire requires wars, drones, invasions, occupations and torture, so be it!

Torture will truly disappear and the politicians will be put on trial for these crimes, only when the empire is transformed back to a republic: where impunity ends justice begins.

________________

James Petras latest book, The Politics of Imperialism: The US, Israel and the Middle East(Atlanta: Clarity Press 2014)

Major Anti-Russian False Flag Coming?

December 18, 2014 | By Stephen Lendman

David-Dees-and-Russia

911 on steroids …

Longstanding US plans call for regime change in Russia. Targeting its sovereign independent government. Its main Eurasian rival.

Washington wants pro-Western stooge governance installed. By color revolution or war. US hegemonic ambitions threaten world peace.

Things are more dangerous today than any time since events preceding WW II. Russian economist/political analyst Mikhail Delyagin expects a major anti-Russian provocation.

Expressing his views on Pravda radio, saying “things and information of a unique character…threaten us all very much.”

Ukraine is a pretext. A US-led NATO platform. A dysfunctional, criminal Washington installed neo-Nazi regime.

Economically bankrupt with no legitimacy whatever. Dependent on outside support for survival. America’s newest colony.

Controlling policy, calling the shots, what Washington says goes. Kiev’s stooge regime salutes and obeys. Otherwise it’s replaced. Color revolution 3.0 installing another.

“Why did the Ukrainian crisis happen,” Delyagin asked? “What is the fundamental reason? Why did the Americans get into it so deep(ly)?”

Because Washington, China and the EU are the “three (major) global players,” says Delyagin. Destroying “EU cooperation with Russia eliminates it as an independent participant in global competition, which is what we see now.”

Leaving America and China the two remaining dominant world players. A “real cold war” exists.

Hot war in Ukraine. EU/Russian trade is important. European sentiment favors “restor(ing) relations,” Delyagin believes.

Washington wants Russia “rip(ped)” from Europe. Unsuccessful so far. The MH17 false flag provocation failed.

Russia had nothing to do with it. Nor Donbas freedom fighters. Ukrainian Sukhoi-25 warplane cannon fire was responsible.

Verifiable satellite/radar data showed its aircraft tailing MH17 before destruction. Fuselage penetration holes were consistent with cannon rounds.

“The sequel is coming,” said Delyagin. “There will be another provocation…We got some information. (I)ndirectly confirm(ed) from the West.”

Saying Ukraine’s army “goes on (a fake) offensive. (I)t pretends to attack. (S)oldiers carry out a massive artillery preparation.”

Then “a tactical nuclear warhead explodes in the zone of the offensive of the Ukrainian army.”

Russia is blamed. Unjustifiably. Perhaps to no avail. America alone ever used nuclear weapons. Doing it again “is not so difficult,” said Delyagin.

Estonia’s Paldiski port has warehouse stored radioactive waste. US-led NATO “reportedly delivered (radioactive) cargo.” Not “waste to be disposed of.”

The scheme goes like this, said Delyagin. Unable to blame Russia for MH17, “we will explain to everyone that the damned Russian barbarians had used nuclear weapons against the defenseless Ukrainian army.”

Putin gets blamed. No one in Russia “can deploy a tactical nuclear weapon without the direct order from the Supreme Commander.”

At issue is destroying EU/Russian relations. Disrupt trade. Sever normal political ties. Perhaps block Russian media in Western countries and Japan.

Given the infinite cynicism of our American, as many say, “colleagues.” Nothing too outrageous is beyond their scheming.

Even detonating a nuclear device. False flag criminality blaming Russia. 9/11 on steroids. Too grave to ignore.

With no evidence to photograph for forensic examination. Unlike MH17. “(T)o prove it’s not us.”

Attempts so far to blame Russia for Ukrainian crisis conditions failed. Evidence, or lack of it, debunked Western claims.

Nuclear detonation is different, said Delyagin. Leaving no fingerprints. Perhaps before Christmas. For holy day shock value.

Delyagin predicted Ukraine’s coup. Expected it last February. On Sochi’s winter Olympics first day. It came at the end. Two weeks later. On February 22.

Whether he’s right or wrong about a nuclear false flag remains to be seen. Lunatics in Washington make anything possible.

The unthinkable could follow mass nuclear casualties. Perhaps successfully isolating Russia. Then direct East/West confrontation.

Conflict launching nuclear war. What decades of MAD (mutually assured destruction) prevented. Perhaps no longer.

It remains to be seen. Not for long if Delyagin’s before Christmas scenario proves right.

On Sunday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met John Kerry in Rome. Their 17th meeting this year.

Resolving nothing. Washington entirely to blame for Ukrainian and most other world conflict conditions.

A Russian Foreign Ministry statement said:

“When discussing bilateral relations Lavrov stressed that their development is possible only on the basis of equality and mutual interests, while any attempts to pressure Russia have no prospect,”

Lavrov and Kerry discussed Ukraine. The Russian diplomat stressing the importance of observing Geneva and Minsk agreements.

Ones Kiev spurned. Violated straightaway. On orders from Washington. Showing no credible signs of observing now. Conflict conditions remain. Lavrov hopes otherwise saying:

“In the context of the situation in southeastern Ukraine, the consistent implementation of the Minsk agreements is paramount, as well as the convening of a contact group for this purpose as early as possible.”

Illegitimate oligarch president Petro Poroshenko is Washington’s man in Ukraine. A convenient stooge. Obeying orders. On command.

Intending more war. His phony “regime of silence” is head-fake deception.

Saying it helps him regroup. Build troop strength. Rearm. Restore combat readiness. Prepare for more conflict. On orders from Washington.

Current conditions reflect the calm before the storm. Whether by nuclear false flag deception, another US/Kiev provocation, or other pretext remains to be seen.

It bears repeating. Washington wants pro-Western stooge governance replacing sovereign Russian independence.

Its master plan calls for world conquest. Perhaps using nuclear confrontation to achieve aims. Madness by any standard.

A Final Comment

Russia Today interviewed Mikhail Gorbahev. Soviet Russia’s last leader. Now aged 83.

Saying America needs Perestroika reforms. Restructuring. Politically. Economically. Militarily.

“They can call it any name they want,” said Gorbachev. “(I)t’s not easy for them. (W)ith the society they have.”

Creating nonexistent enemies. Stoking tensions. Creating instability. Bullying other nations. Shifting responsibility.

“Whenever tensions are high, whenever there’s instability in a certain country or throughout the region, it’s an opportunity for (Washington) to intervene,” said Gorbachev.

“I am quite familiar with this policy from my own experience,” he explained. It’s up to Europe to prevent a new Cold War, he believes.

One potentially much more dangerous. Deescalation is vital. When things risk spinning out of control. Sparking more serious confrontation.

Risks too dangerous to permit. Washington bears full responsibility. Fueling anti-Russian sentiment is unacceptable.

Gorbachev believes time remains to change things. At the same time, knowing what Russia faces.

Washington needs enemies, said Gorbachev. To exert “pressure. They can’t live without it. They are still enslaved by their old policy.”

Ukraine is America’s pretext for whatever follows. For its anything goes policy.

For sparking East/West confrontation. What no responsible government would permit. What Washington prioritizes.

Furthering its hegemonic aims. It bears repeating. Madness by any standard.


Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached atlendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His new book is titled “How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War”. www.claritypress.com/Lendman.html Visit his blog site at www.sjlendman.blogspot.com.

CIA = Murder Inc.

December 18, 2014 | By James Hall

william casey cia

 

“Let’s remember, the CIA’s job is to go out and create wars.” – Jesse Ventura

The motives behind the expose report on CIA practices of torture misses the critical issue surrounding the “Agency”. Most Democrats and many left wing partisans enjoy pointing the dagger at George W. Bush and his cabal of dedicated conspirators. While the first family of fascist facilitators are certainly an indefensible clan of criminals, the essential element about the Central Intelligence Agency is that gathering and interrupting clandestine tradecraft, produces little effect to enhance an American First foreign policy.

Those treasonous NeoCons, who infiltrated both parties, are dire hard globalists bent on fostering an international interventionist empire. Defending the use of a handbook for torture techniques is a task that only a sociopathic and deranged authoritarian undertakes.

The Hill report, Ex-CIA director defends rectal rehydration, is an exercise in fatuousness.

“Former CIA Director Gen. Michael Hayden on Thursday defended revelations from Senate Intelligence Committee Democrats that the agency used rectal rehydration on detainees.

“These were medical procedures,” Hayden said during a tense interview on CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.” He added that the method was used because detainees were dehydrated, and that giving them intravenous fluids with needles would be dangerous.”

Cheney-Torture

Prancing out Dick “Darth Vader” Cheney to brag about his record of enhanced interrogation is consistent with the culture of obscene de-humanization that is always rationalized as protecting the “Homeland”.

The video, Professor McCoy Exposes the History of CIA Interrogation on Democracy Now provides an overview of CIA practices.

Melvin A. Goodman article, Torture Report Exposes Sadism and Lies argues that,

“The senior operations officer who ran the CIA’s torture and abuse program, Jose Rodriquez, has been permitted to write a book and a long essay in the Washington Post that argue the interrogation techniques were legal and effective. Their charges are completely spurious and their credibility is non-existent.

CIA directors Tenet and Hayden, who signed off on the enhanced interrogation program, were involved in numerous efforts to politicize the work of the CIA. In addition to deceiving the White House on the efficacy of the torture program, Tenet provided misinformation to the White House on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. His role on Iraqi WMD has been comprehensively and authoritatively documented in the reports of the Robb-Silberman Committee, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.”

How did the Agency become the refuge of nihilism? Start with looking into the reasons for installing a mole like James Jesus Angleton, as head of the Counterintelligence Staff, which illustrates the danger of entrusting national security to compromised loyalists. Fast forward to today and elevating John O. Brennan: CIA Drone Director to head up the Agency proves that the killing machine is more important than the analysis of intelligence.

Review the impact from the Continued Policy of Torture that goes on under different names and locations. Tracing the record of torture is mild outrage when compared to the actual operations of the Shadow Forces Behind Government.

The CIA has a damaging pattern of not providing accurate intelligence. The reason is simple, for their mission has changed from the original charter and their purpose is now the elimination of all opposition to the rule of the “REAL” establishment. The CIA’s own site and library says:

“Preempt threats and further US national security objectives by collecting intelligence that matters, producing objective all-source analysis, conducting effective covert action as directed by the President, and safeguarding the secrets that help keep our Nation safe.”

“From the creation of the Agency in 1947 until the establishment of the permanent select committees on intelligence in the mid-1970s, there was relatively little legislation in this area. Only three statutes, in fact, fell into the aforementioned categories, and all were developed largely by the Agency and supported by the administration in power. With the advent of the select committees, however, Congress began to develop and enact more legislation affecting the Agency’s mission, authorities, and organization. Not only did the annual authorization bills for intelligence developed by the select committees offer new opportunities to bring legislation affecting the CIA to the floor, but the committees themselves increasingly took the initiative to propose such legislation.”

Much of the research and condemnation of the deadly intervention from covert operations has been assembled from the likes of the late Alexander Cockburn, who wrote back in 2009 in “A Damned Murder Inc.”

“What about targets of assassination attempts by the CIA, acting on presidential orders?  We could start with the bid on Chou En-lai’s life after the Bandung Conference in 1954; they blew up the plane scheduled to take him home, but fortunately for him, though not his fellow passengers, he’d switched flights. Then we could move on to the efforts, ultimately successful in 1961, to kill the Congo’s Patrice Lumumba, in which the CIA was intimately involved, dispatching among others  the late Dr Sidney Gottlieb, the Agency’s in-house killer chemist, with a  hypodermic loaded with poison.  The Agency made many efforts to kill General Kassim in Iraq. The first such attempt on October 7, 1959 was botched badly, and one of the assassins, Saddam Husssein, was, spirited out to an Agency apartment in Cairo. There was a second Agency effort in 1960-1961 with a poisoned handkerchief. Finally they shot Kassim in the coup of February 8/9, 1963.”

CIAmurderEven the U.S. government admitted the rattling impact of covert actionable ops as seen in the Senator Frank Church Committee Reports providing documentation on CIA operation abuses.

“The Interim Report documents the Church Committee’s findings on U.S. involvement in attempts to assassinate foreign leaders, particularly Patrice Lumumba of the Congo, Cuba’s Fidel Castro, Rafael Trujillo of the Dominican Republic, the Diem brothers of Vietnam, and General Rene Schneider of Chile. It also contains findings on the development of a general “Executive Action” capability by the CIA.”

Still not convinced? Then review the litany of evidence in A Timeline of CIA Atrocities, the Secret Mercenary Armies of the CIA and 10 Dirty Secret CIA Operations.

The list of Directors of Central Intelligence (DCI) includes some of the most infamous names in post War II sub-rosa governance. The likes of Allen W. Dulles, Richard M. Helms, James R. Schlesinger, William E. Colby, George H. W. Bush, William J. Casey and George J. Tenet each had their secrets but all were agents in protecting the NWO “Nefarious Warrior Organism” Empire.

This background sets the stage for the latest chapter of CIA = Murder Inc.

Joe Wolverton, II, J.D. references President Obama’s Secret CIA Hit Squad Detailed in “The Way of the Knife” in the New American. “The story behind the development and deployment of this presidential killing corps is told in The Way of the Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth, the latest book by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Mark Mazzetti.”

Mr. Wolverton goes on to sum up.

“The “new American way of war” includes not declaring war. Rather than submit to the constitutional authority of the legislative branch’s exclusive power to declare war, presidents for decades have marched brigades of U.S. armies through the barriers that separate the powers of the White House and Capitol Hill.

Admittedly, when the president assumes the power to designate people as enemies of the state, then he feels legally justified in skirting (or completely disregarding) the myriad constitutional and moral checks on the prosecution of war.

For example, President Obama’s nearly daily approval of drone-delivered assassinations is an effrontery to over 650 years of our Anglo-American law’s protection from autocratic decrees of death without due process of law. When any president usurps the power to place names on a kill list and then have those people summarily executed without due process, he places our republic on a trajectory toward tyranny and government-sponsored terrorism.”

The need for valid intelligence should not be compromised with the culture of unaccountable execution for the “National Security” of government thugs. The CIA has proven to be an enemy of the American People. Honest conservatives need to accept and adopt that protecting surreptitious enforcers is not the same as defending the nation.

A list of US Intelligence and Security Agencies shows there is no shortage of government departments that have the capacity of conducting justifiable intelligence collection. Allowing the CIA to wage secretive wars is entirely outside the lawful traditions upon which this country was founded.

The circumstance of the mysterious death of William E. Colby strongly indicates that he was murdered. Who Killed William Colby? – provides the following deduction. “A CIA director can make a lot of enemies which Colby managed to do in spades. Perhaps his biggest sin was his willingness to honestly answer Congress the questions they put to him. In fact his candor caused Kissinger to instruct President Ford to fire him which he did in November 1975. Twenty years later Colby was scheduled to speak before Congress again and the spooks at Langley wanted to take no chances of more family jewels being cast before swine.”

Matthew 26:52 applies to CIA DCI’s – “for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.”


SARTRE is the pen name of James Hall, a reformed, former political operative. This pundit’s formal instruction in History, Philosophy and Political Science served as training for activism, on the staff of several politicians and in many campaigns. A believer in authentic Public Service, independent business interests were pursued in the private sector. As a small business owner and entrepreneur, several successful ventures expanded opportunities for customers and employees. Speculation in markets, and international business investments, allowed for extensive travel and a world view for commerce. He is retired and lives with his wife in a rural community. “Populism” best describes the approach to SARTRE’s perspective on Politics. Realities, suggest that American Values can be restored with an appreciation of “Pragmatic Anarchism.” Reforms will require an Existential approach. “Ideas Move the World,” and SARTRE’S intent is to stir the conscience of those who desire to bring back a common sense, moral and traditional value culture for America. Not seeking fame nor fortune, SARTRE’s only goal is to ask the questions that few will dare … Having refused the invites of an academic career because of the hypocrisy of elite’s, the search for TRUTH is the challenge that is made to all readers. It starts within yourself and is achieved only with your sincere desire to face Reality. So who is SARTRE? He is really an ordinary man just like you, who invites you to join in on this journey. Visit his website at http://batr.org.

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The Rise of German Imperialism and the Phony “Russian Threat”

12.06.2014 :: Analysis

petras

Introduction: The principle Nazi ideological prop that secured massive financial and political support from Germany’s leading industrialists was the Communist and Soviet threat. The main Nazi military drive, absorbing two-thirds of its best troops, was directed eastward at conquering and destroying Russia.

The ‘Russian Threat’ justified Nazi Germany’s conquest and occupation of the Ukraine, the Balkans, Eastern Europe and the Baltic states, with the aid of a substantial proportion of local Nazi collaborators.

After Germany’s defeat , division and disarmament, and with the extension of Soviet power, the US reinstated the Nazi industrial and banking giants, officials and intelligence operatives.At first they were engaged in rebuilding their domestic economy and consolidating political power, in collaboration with the US military occupation forces.

By the late 1960’s Germany regained economic primacy in Europe and was at the forefront of European ‘integration’, in association with France and England. It soon came to dominate the principle decision – making institutions of the European Union(EU). The EU served as Germany’s instrument for conquest by stealth. Year by year, through ‘aid’ and low interest loans,the EU facilitated German capitalist’s market penetration and financial expansion,through out south and central Europe. Germany set the agenda for Western Europe, gaining economic dominance while benefiting from US subversion and encirclement of Eastern Europe, Russia and the Baltic and Balkan states.

Germany’s Great Leap Forward: The Annexation of East Germany and the Demise of the USSR

Germany’s projection of power on a world scale would never have occurred if it had not annexed East Germany. Despite the West German claims of beneficence and ‘aid’ to the East, the Bonn regime secured several million skilled engineers, workers and technicians, the takeover of factories, productive farms and, most important, the Eastern European and Russian markets for industrial goods, worth billions of dollars. Germany was transformed from an emerging influential EU partner, into the most dynamic expansionist power in Europe, especially in the former Warsaw Pact economies.

The annexation of East Germany and the overthrow of the Communist governments in the East allowed German capitalists to dominate markets in the former Eastern bloc .As the major trading partner, it seized control of major industrial enterprises via corrupt privatizations decreed by the newly installed pro-capitalist client regimes. As the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgarian, the Baltic States “privatized” and “de-nationalized” strategic economic, trade, media and social service sectors, ‘unified’ Germany was able to resume a privileged place. As Russia fell into the hands of gangsters, emerging oligarchs and political proxies of western capitalists, its entire industrial infrastructure was decimated and Russia was converted into a giant raw-material export region.

Germany converted its trade relations with Russia from one between equals into a ‘colonial’ pattern: Germany exported high value industrial products and imported gas, oil and raw materials from Russia.

German power expanded exponentially, with the annexation of the “other Germany”, the restoration of capitalism in Eastern Europe and the ascendancy of client regimes eager and willing to submit to a German dominated European Union and a US directed NATO military command.

German political-economic expansion via ‘popular uprisings’, controlled by local political clients, was soon accompanied by a US led military offensive – sparked by separatist movements. Germany intervened in Yugoslavia, aiding and abetting separatists in Slovenia and Croatia .It backed the US-NATO bombing of Serbia and supported the far-right, self-styled Kosovo Liberation Army ( KLA),engaged in a terrorist war in Kosovo . Belgrade was defeated and regime change led to a neo-liberal client state. The US built the largest military base in Europe in Kosovo. Montenegro and Macedonia became EU satellites.

While NATO expanded and enhanced the US military presence up to Russia’s borders, Germany became the continent’s pre-eminent economic power.

Germany and the New World Order

While President Bush and Clinton were heralding a “new world order”, based on unipolar military supremacy, Germany advanced its new imperial order by exercising its political and economic levers. Each of the two power centers, Germany and the US, shared the common quest of rapidly incorporating the new capitalist regimes into their regional organizations –the European Union (EU) and NATO– and extending their reach globally. Given the reactionaryorigins and trajectory into vassalage of the Eastern, Baltic and Balkan regimes, and given their political fears of a popular reaction to the loss of employment, welfare and independence resulting from their implementation of savage neoliberal “shock policies”, the client rulers immediately “applied” for membership as subordinate members of the EU and NATO, trading sovereignty, markets and national ownership of the means of production for economic handouts and the ‘free’ movement of labor, an escape valve for the millions of newly unemployed workers. German and English capital got millions of skilled immigrant workers at below labor market wages, and unimpeded access to markets and resources. The US secured NATO military bases, and recruited military forces for its Middle East and South Asian imperial wars.

US-German military and economic dominance in Europe was premised on retaining Russia as a weak quasi vassal state, and on the continued economic growth of their economies beyond the initial pillage of the ex-communist economies.

For the US, uncontested military supremacy throughout Europe was the springboard for near-time imperial expansion in the Middle East, South Asia, Africa and Latin America. NATO was ‘internationalized’ into an offensive global military alliance: first in Somalia, Afghanistan then Iraq, Libya, Syria and the Ukraine.

The Rise of Russia, The Islamic Resistance and the New Cold War

During the ‘decade of infamy’ (1991-2000) extreme privatization measures by the client rulers in Russia on behalf of EU and US investors and gangster oligarchs, added up to vast pillage of the entire economy, public treasury and national patrimony. The image and reality of a giant prostrate vassal state unable to pursue an independent foreign policy, and incapable of providing the minimum semblance of a modern functioning economy and maintaining the rule of law, became the defining view of Russia by the EU and the USA. Post-communist Russia, a failed state by any measure, was dubbed a “liberal democracy” by every western capitalist politician and so it was repeated by all their mass media acolytes.

The fortuitous rise of Vladimir Putin and the gradual replacement of some of the most egregious ‘sell-out’ neo-liberal officials, and most important, the reconstruction of the Russian state with a proper budget and functioning national institutions, was immediately perceived as a threat to US military supremacy and German economic expansion. Russia’s transition from Western vassalage to regaining its status as a sovereign independent state set in motion, an aggressive counter-offensive by the US-EU. They financed a neo-liberal-oligarchy backed political opposition in an attempt to restore Russia to vassalage via street demonstrations and elections .Their efforts to oust Putin and re-establish Western vassal state failed. What worked in 19991 with Yeltsin’s power grab against Gorbachev was ineffective against Putin. The vast majority of Russians did not want a return to the decade of infamy.

In the beginning of the new century, Putin and his team set new ground-rules, in which oligarchs could retain their illicit wealth and conglomerates, providing they didn’t use their economic levers to seize state power. Secondly, Putin revived and restored the scientific technical, military, industrial and cultural institutions and centralized trade and investment decisions within a wide circle of public and private decision makers not beholden to Western policymakers. Thirdly, he began to assess and rectify the breakdown of Russian security agencies particularly with regard to the threats emanating from Western sponsored ‘separatist’ movements in the Caucuses, especially, in Chechnya, and the onset of US backed ‘color revolutions’ in the Ukraine and Georgia.

At first, Putin optimistically assumed that, Russia being a capitalist state, and without any competing ideology, the normalization and stabilization of the Russian state would bewelcomed by the US and the EU. He even envisioned that they would accept Russia as an economic, political, and even NATO partner. Putin even made overtures to join and co-operate with NATO and the EU. The West did not try to dissuade Putin of his illusions .In fact they encouraged him, even as they escalated their backing for Putin’s internal opposition and prepared a series of imperial wars and sanctions in the Middle East, targeting traditional Russian allies in Iraq, Syria and Libya.

As the ‘internal’ subversive strategy failed to dislodge President Putin, and the Russian state prevailed over the neo-vassals, the demonization of Putin became constant and shrill. The West moved decisively to an ‘outsider strategy’, to isolate, encircle and undermine the Russian state by undermining allies, and trading partners

US and Germany Confront Russia: Manufacturing the “Russian Threat”

Russia was enticed to support US and NATO wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya in exchange for the promise of deeper integration into Western markets. The US and EU accepted Russian co-operation, including military supply routes and bases, for their invasion and occupation of Afghanistan. The NATO powers secured Russian support of sanctions against Iran. They exploited Russia’s naïve support of a “no fly zone” over Libya to launch a full scale aerial war. The US financed so-called “color revolutions” in Georgia and the Ukraine overt, a dress rehearsal for the putsch in 2014 Each violent seizure of power allowed NATO to impose anti-Russian rulers eager and willing to serve as vassal states to Germany and the US.

Germany spearheaded the European imperial advance in the Balkans and Moldavia, countries with strong economic ties to Russia. High German officials “visited” the Balkans to bolster their ties with vassal regimes in Slovenia, Bulgaria, Slovakia and Croatia. Under German direction, the European Union ordered the vassal Bulgarian regime of Boyko “the booby” Borisov to block the passage of Russian owned South Stream pipeline to Serbia, Hungary, Slovenia and beyond. The Bulgarian state lost $400 million in annual revenue . . . Germany and the US bankrolled pro-NATO and EU client politicians in Moldavia – securing the election of Iurie Leanca as Prime Minister. As a result of Leanca’s slavish pursuit of EU vassalage, Moldavia lost $150 million in exports to Russia. Leanca’s pro-EU policies go counter to the views of most Moldavians – 57% see Russia as the country’s most important economic partner. Nearly 40% of the Moldavian working age population works in Russia and 25% of the Moldavians’ $8 billion GDP is accounted for by overseas remittances.

German and the US empire-builders steamroll over dissenting voices in Hungary, Serbia and Slovenia, as well as Moldova and Bulgaria, who’s economy and population suffer from the impositions of the blockade of the Russian gas and oil pipeline. But Germany’s, all out economic warfare against Russia takes precedent over the interests of its vassal states: its theirs to sacrifice for the ‘Greater Good’ of the emerging German economic empire and the US – NATO military encirclement of Russia. The extremely crude dictates of German imperial interests articulated through the EU, and the willingness of Balkan and Baltic regimes to sacrifice fundamental economic interests, are the best indicators of the emerging German empire in Europe.

Parallel to Germany’s rabid anti-Russian economic campaign, the US via NATO is engaged in a vast military build-up along the length and breadth of Russia’s frontier. The US stooge, NATO Chief Jens Stoltenberg, boasts that over the current year, NATO has increased 5-fold the warplanes and bombers patrolling Russian maritime and land frontiers, carried out military exercises every two days and vastly increased the number of war ships in the Baltic and Black Sea.

Conclusion

What is absolutely clear is that the US and Germany want to return Russia to the vassalage status of the 1990’s. They do not want ‘normal relations’. From the moment Putin moved to restore the Russian state and economy, the Western powers have engaged in a series of political and military interventions, eliminating Russian allies, trading partners and independent states.

The emergent of extremist, visceral anti-Russian regimes in Poland, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania served as the forward shield for NATO advancement and German economic encroachment. Hitler’s ‘dream’ of realizing the conquest of the East via unilateral military conquest has now under Prime Minister Merkel taken the form of conquest by stealth in Northern and Central Europe , by economic blackmail in the Balkans ,and by violent putsches in the Ukraine and Georgia.

The German economic ruling class is divided between the dominant pro-US sector that is willing to sacrifice lucrative trade with Russia today in hopes of dominating and pillaging the entire economy in a post-Putin Russia (dominated by ‘reborn Yeltsin clones’); and a minority industrial sector, which wants to end sanctions and return to normal economic relations with Russia.

Germany is fearful that its client rulers in the East, especially in the Balkans are vulnerable to a popular upheaval due to the economic sacrifices they impose on the population. Hence, Germany is wholly in favor of the new NATO rapid deployment force, ostensibly designed to counter a non-existent “Russian threat” but in reality to prop up faltering vassal regimes.

The ‘Russian Threat’, the ideology driving the US and German offensive throughout Europe and the Caucuses, is a replay of the same doctrine which Hitler used to secure support from domestic industrial bankers, conservatives and right wing overseas collaborators among extremists in Ukraine, Hungary, Rumania and Bulgaria.

The US-EU seizure of power via vassal political clients backed by corrupt oligarchs and Nazi street fighters in Ukraine detonated the current crisis. Ukraine power grab posed a top security threat to the very existence of Russia as an independent state. After the Kiev take-over, NATO moved its stooge regime in Kiev forward to militarily eliminate the independent regions in the Southeast and seize the Crimea .thus totally eliminating Russia’s strategic position in the Black Sea.
Russia the victim of the NATO power grab was labelled the “aggressor”. The entire officialdom and mass media echoed the Big Lie.
Two decades of US NATO military advances on Russia’s borders and German-EU economic expansion into Russian markets were obfuscated. Ukraine is the most important strategic military platform from which the US-NATO can launch an attack on the Russian heartland and the single largest market for Germany since the annexation of East Germany

The US and Germany see the Ukraine conquest as of extreme value in itself but also as the key to launching an all-out offensive to strangle Russia’s economy via sanctions and dumping oil and to militarily threaten Russia. The strategic goal is to reduce the Russian population to poverty and to re-activate the quasi-moribund opposition to overthrow the Putin government and return Russia to permanent vassalage.
The US and German imperial elite, looking beyond Russia, believe that if they control Russia, they can encircle ,isolate and attack China from the West as well as the East.

Wild-eyed fanatics they are not. But as rabid proponents of a permanent war to end Russia’s presence in Europe and to undermine China’s emergence as a world power, they are willing to go to the brink of a nuclear war.

The ideological centerpiece of US-German imperial expansion and conquest in Europe and the Caucuses is the “Russian Threat”. It is the touchstone defining adversaries and allies. Countries that do not uphold sanctions are targeted. The mass media repeat the lie. The “Russian Threat” has become the war cry for cringing vassals – the phony justification for imposing frightful sacrifices to serve their imperial ‘padrones’ in Berlin and Washington – fearing the rebellion of the ‘sacrificed’ population. No doubt, under siege, Russia will be forced to make sacrifices. The oligarchs will flee westward; the liberals will crawl under their beds. But just as the Soviets turned the tide of war in Stalingrad, the Russian people, past the first two years of a bootstrap operation will survive, thrive and become once again a beacon of hope to all people looking to get from under the tyranny of US-NATO militarism and German-EU economic dictates.

ATHENS 1944: BRITAIN’S DIRTY SECRET

and   The Observer, Sunday 30 November 2014

demonstrators in Athens with three bodies, shot dead, in the middle of the crowd
A day that changed history: the bodies of unarmed protestors shot by the police and the British army in Athens on 3 December 1944. Photograph: Dmitri Kessel/Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images

When 28 civilians were killed in Athens, it wasn’t the Nazis who were to blame, it was the British. Ed Vulliamy and Helena Smith reveal how Churchill’s shameful decision to turn on the partisans who had fought on our side in the war sowed the seeds for the rise of the far right in Greece today

“I can still see it very clearly, I have not forgotten,” says Títos Patríkios. “The Athens police firing on the crowd from the roof of the parliament in Syntagma Square. The young men and women lying in pools of blood, everyone rushing down the stairs in total shock, total panic.”

And then came the defining moment: the recklessness of youth, the passion of belief in a justice burning bright: “I jumped up on the fountain in the middle of the square, the one that is still there, and I began to shout: “Comrades, don’t disperse! Victory will be ours! Don’t leave. The time has come. We will win!”

“I was,” he says now, “profoundly sure, that we would win.” But there was no winning that day; just as there was no pretending that what had happened would not change the history of a country that, liberated from Adolf Hitler’s Reich barely six weeks earlier, was now surging headlong towards bloody civil war.

Even now, at 86, when Patríkios “laughs at and with myself that I have reached such an age”, the poet can remember, scene-for-scene, shot for shot, what happened in the central square of Greek political life on the morning of 3 December 1944.

This was the day, those 70 years ago this week, when the British army, still at war with Germany, opened fire upon – and gave locals who had collaborated with the Nazis the guns to fire upon – a civilian crowd demonstrating in support of the partisans with whom Britain had been allied for three years.

The crowd carried Greek, American, British and Soviet flags, and chanted: “Viva Churchill, Viva Roosevelt, Viva Stalin’” in endorsement of the wartime alliance.

Twenty-eight civilians, mostly young boys and girls, were killed and hundreds injured. “We had all thought it would be a demonstration like any other,” Patríkios recalls. “Business as usual. Nobody expected a bloodbath.”

Britain’s logic was brutal and perfidious: Prime minister Winston Churchill considered the influence of the Communist Party within the resistance movement he had backed throughout the war – the National Liberation Front, EAM – to have grown stronger than he had calculated, sufficient to jeopardise his plan to return the Greek king to power and keep Communism at bay. So he switched allegiances to back the supporters of Hitler against his own erstwhile allies.

There were others in the square that day who, like the 16-year-old Patríkios, would go on to become prominent members of the left. Míkis Theodorakis, renowned composer and iconic figure in modern Greek history, daubed a Greek flag in the blood of those who fell. Like Patríkios, he was a member of the resistance youth movement. And, like Patríkios, he knew his country had changed. Within days, RAF Spitfires and Beaufighters were strafing leftist strongholds as the Battle of Athens – known in Greece as the Dekemvriana – began, fought not between the British and the Nazis, but the British alongside supporters of the Nazis against the partisans. “I can still smell the destruction,” Patríkios laments. “The mortars were raining down and planes were targeting everything. Even now, after all these years, I flinch at the sound of planes in war movies.”

And thereafter Greece’s descent into catastrophic civil war: a cruel and bloody episode in British as well as Greek history which every Greek knows to their core – differently, depending on which side they were on – but which remains curiously untold in Britain, perhaps out of shame, maybe the arrogance of a lack of interest. It is a narrative of which the millions of Britons who go to savour the glories of Greek antiquity or disco-dance around the islands Mamma Mia-style, are unaware.

The legacy of this betrayal has haunted Greece ever since, its shadow hanging over the turbulence and violence that erupted in 2008 after the killing of a schoolboy by police – also called the Dekemvriana – and created an abyss between the left and right thereafter.

“The 1944 December uprising and 1946-49 civil war period infuses the present,” says the leading historian of these events, André Gerolymatos, “because there has never been a reconciliation. In France or Italy, if you fought the Nazis, you were respected in society after the war, regardless of ideology. In Greece, you found yourself fighting – or imprisoned and tortured by – the people who had collaborated with the Nazis, on British orders. There has never been a reckoning with that crime, and much of what is happening in Greece now is the result of not coming to terms with the past.”

Before the war, Greece was ruled by a royalist dictatorship whose emblem of a fascist axe and crown well expressed its dichotomy once war began: the dictator, General Ioannis Metaxas, had been trained as an army officer in Imperial Germany, while Greek King George II – an uncle of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh – was attached to Britain. The Greek left, meanwhile, had been reinforced by a huge influx of politicised refugees and liberal intellectuals from Asia Minor, who crammed into the slums of Pireaus and working-class Athens.

Both dictator and king were fervently anti-communist, and Metaxas banned the Communist Party, KKE, interning and torturing its members, supporters and anyone who did not accept “the national ideology” in camps and prisons, or sending them into internal exile. Once war started, Metaxas refused to accept Mussolini’s ultimatum to surrender and pledged his loyalty to the Anglo-Greek alliance. The Greeks fought valiantly and defeated the Italians, but could not resist the Wehrmacht. By the end of April 1941, the Axis forces imposed a harsh occupation of the country. The Greeks – at first spontaneously, later in organised groups – resisted.

But, noted the British Special Operations Executive (SOE): “The right wing and monarchists were slower than their opponents in deciding to resist the occupation, and were therefore of little use.”

Britain’s natural allies were therefore EAM – an alliance of left wing and agrarian parties of which the KKE was dominant, but by no means the entirety – and its partisan military arm, ELAS.

There is no overstating the horror of occupation. Professor Mark Mazower’s book Inside Hitler’s Greece describes hideous bloccos or “round-ups” – whereby crowds would be corralled into the streets so that masked informers could point out ELAS supporters to the Gestapo and Security Battalions – which had been established by the collaborationist government to assist the Nazis – for execution. Stripping and violation of women was a common means to secure “confessions”. Mass executions took place “on the German model”: in public, for purposes of intimidation; bodies would be left hanging from trees, guarded by Security Battalion collaborators to prevent their removal. In response, ELAS mounted daily counterattacks on the Germans and their quislings. The partisan movement was born in Athens but based in the villages, so that Greece was progressively liberated from the countryside. The SOE played its part, famous in military annals for the role of Brigadier Eddie Myers and “Monty” Woodhouse in blowing up the Gorgopotomas viaduct in 1942 and other operations with the partisans – andartes in Greek.

By autumn 1944, Greece had been devastated by occupation and famine. Half a million people had died – 7% of the population. ELAS had, however, liberated dozens of villages and become a proto-government, administering parts of the country while the official state withered away. But after German withdrawal, ELAS kept its 50,000 armed partisans outside the capital, and in May 1944 agreed to the arrival of British troops, and to place its men under the officer commanding, Lt Gen Ronald Scobie.

On 12 October the Germans evacuated Athens. Some ELAS fighters, however, had been in the capital all along, and welcomed the fresh air of freedom during a six-day window between liberation and the arrival of the British. One partisan in particular is still alive, aged 92, and is a legend of modern Greece.

Commanding presence: Churchill leaving HMS Ajax to attend a conference ashore. Athens can be seen in the background.
Commanding presence: Churchill leaving HMS Ajax to attend a conference ashore. Athens can be seen in the background. Photograph: Crown Copyright. IWM/Imperial War Museum

In and around the European parliament in Brussels, the man in a Greek fisherman’s cap, with his mane of white hair and moustache, stands out. He is Manolis Glezos, senior MEP for the leftist Syriza party of Greece.

Glezos is a man of humbling greatness. On 30 May 1941, he climbed the Acropolis with another partisan and tore down the swastika flag that had been hung there a month before. He was arrested by the Gestapo in 1942, was tortured and as a result suffered from tuberculosis. He escaped and was re-arrested twice – the second time by collaborators. He recalls being sentenced to death in May 1944, before the Germans left Athens – “They told me my grave had already been dug”. Somehow he avoided execution and was then saved from a Greek courtmartial’s firing squad during the civil war period by international outcry led by General de Gaulle, Jean-Paul Sartre and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Rev Geoffrey Fisher.”

Seventy years later, he is an icon of the Greek left who is also hailed as the greatest living authority on the resistance. “The English, to this day, argue that they liberated Greece and saved it from communism,” he says. “But that is the basic problem. They never liberated Greece. Greece had been liberated by the resistance, groups across the spectrum, not just EAM, on 12 October. I was there, on the streets – people were everywhere shouting: ‘Freedom!’ we cried, Laokratia! – ‘Power to the People!’”

The British duly arrived on 18 October, installed a provisional government under Georgios Papandreou and prepared to restore the king. “From the moment they came,” recalls Glezos, “the people and the resistance greeted them as allies. There was nothing but respect and friendship towards the British. We had no idea that we were already giving up our country and our rights.” It was only a matter of time before EAM walked out of the provisional government in frustration over demands that the partisans demobilise. The negotiations broke down on 2 December.

Official British thinking is reflected in War Cabinet papers and other documents kept in the Public Record Office at Kew. As far back as 17 August 1944, Churchill had written a “Personal and Top Secret” memo to US president Franklin Roosevelt to say that: “The War Cabinet and Foreign Secretary are much concerned about what will happen in Athens, and indeed Greece, when the Germans crack or when their divisions try to evacuate the country. If there is a long hiatus after German authorities have gone from the city before organised government can be set up, it seems very likely that EAM and the Communist extremists will attempt to seize the city.”

But what the freedom fighters wanted, insists Glezos “was what we had achieved during the war: a state ruled by the people for the people. There was no plot to take over Athens as Churchill always maintained. If we had wanted to do that, we could have done so before the British arrived.” During November, the British set about building the new National Guard, tasked to police Greece and disarm the wartime militias. In reality, disarmament applied to ELAS only, explains Gerolymatos, not to those who had collaborated with the Nazis. Gerolymatos writes in his forthcoming book, The International Civil War, about how “in the middle of November, the British started releasing Security Battalion officers… and soon some of them were freely walking the streets of Athens wearing new uniforms… The British army continued to provide protection to assist the gradual rehabilitation of the former quisling units in the Greek army and police forces.” An SOE memo urged that “HMG must not appear to be connected with this scheme.”

In conversation, Gerolymatos says: “So far as ELAS could see, the British had arrived, and now some senior officers of the Security Battalions and Special Security Branch [collaborationist units which had been integrated into the SS] were seen walking freely in the streets. Athens in 1944 was a small place, and you could not miss these people. Senior British officers knew exactly what they were doing, despite the fact that the ordinary soldiers of the former Security Battalions were the scum of Greece”. Gerolymatos estimates that 12,000 Security Battalionists were released from Goudi prison during the uprising to join the National Guard, and 228 had been reinstated in the army.

Any British notion that the Communists were poised for revolution fell within the context of the so-called Percentages Agreement, forged between Churchill and Soviet Commissar Josef Stalin at the code-named “Tolstoy Conference” in Moscow on 9 October 1944. Under the terms agreed in what Churchill called “a naughty document”, southeast Europe was carved up into “spheres of influence”, whereby – broadly – Stalin took Romania and Bulgaria, while Britain, in order to keep Russia out of the Mediterranean, took Greece. The obvious thing to have done, argues Gerolymatos, “would have been to incorporate ELAS into the Greek army. The officers in ELAS, many holding commissions in the pre-war Greek army, presumed this would happen – like De Gaulle did with French communists fighting in the resistance: ‘France is liberated, now let’s go and fight Germany!’

“But the British and the Greek government in exile decided from the outset that ELAS officers and men would not be admitted into the new army. Churchill wanted a showdown with the KKE so as to be able to restore the king. Churchill believed that a restoration would result in the return of legitimacy and bring back the old order. EAM-ELAS, regardless of its relationship to the KKE, represented a revolutionary force, and change.”

Meanwhile, continues Gerolymatos: “The Greek communists had decided not to try to take over the country, as least not until late November/early December 1944. The KKE wanted to push for a left-of-centre government and be part of it, that’s all.” Echoing Glezos, he says: “If they had wanted a revolution, they would not have left 50,000 armed men outside the capital after liberation – they’d have brought them in.”

“By recruiting the collaborators, the British changed the paradigm, signalling that the old order was back. Churchill wanted the conflict,” says Gerolymatos. “We must remember: there was no Battle for Greece. A large number of the British troops that arrived were administrative, not line units. When the fighting broke out in December, the British and the provisional government let the Security Battalions out of Goudi; they knew how to fight street-to-street because they’d done it with the Nazis. They’d been fighting ELAS already during the occupation and resumed the battle with gusto.”

The morning of Sunday 3 December was a sunny one, as several processions of Greek republicans, anti-monarchists, socialists and communists wound their way towards Syntagma Square. Police cordons blocked their way, but several thousand broke through; as they approached the square, a man in military uniform shouted: “Shoot the bastards!” The lethal fusillade – from Greek police positions atop the parliament building and British headquarters in the Grande Bretagne hotel – lasted half an hour. By noon, a second crowd of demonstrators entered the square, until it was jammed with 60,000 people. After several hours, a column of British paratroops cleared the square; but the Battle of Athens had begun, and Churchill had his war.

Manolis Glezos was sick that morning, suffering from tuberculosis. “But when I heard what had happened, I got off my sick bed,” he recalls. The following day, Glezos was roaming the streets, angry and determined, disarming police stations. By the time the British sent in an armoured division he and his comrades were waiting.

“I note the fact,” he says, “that they would rather use those troops to fight our population than German Nazis!” By the time British tanks rolled in from the port of Pireaus, he was lying in wait: “I remember them coming up the Sacred Way. We were dug in a trench. I took out three tanks,” he says. “There was much bloodshed, a lot of fighting, I lost many very good friends. It was difficult to strike at an Englishman, difficult to kill a British soldier – they had been our allies. But now they were trying to destroy the popular will, and had declared war on our people”.

At battle’s peak, Glezos says, the British even set up sniper nests on the Acropolis. “Not even the Germans did that. They were firing down on EAM targets, but we didn’t fire back, so as not [to harm] the monument.”

On 5 December, Lt Gen Scobie imposed martial law and the following day ordered the aerial bombing of the working-class Metz quarter. “British and government forces,” writes anthropologist Neni Panourgia in her study of families in that time, “having at their disposal heavy armament, tanks, aircraft and a disciplined army, were able to make forays into the city, burning and bombing houses and streets and carving out segments of the city… The German tanks had been replaced by British ones, the SS and Gestapo officers by British soldiers.” The house belonging to actor Mimis Fotopoulos, she writes, was burned out with a portrait of Churchill above the fireplace.

“I recall shouting slogans in English, during one battle in Koumoundourou Square because I had a strong voice and it was felt I could be heard,” says poet Títos Patríkios as we talk in his apartment. “‘We are brothers, there’s nothing to divide us, come with us!’ That’s what I was shouting in the hope that they [British troops] would withdraw. And right at that moment, with my head poked above the wall, a bullet brushed over my helmet. Had I not been yanked down by Evangelos Goufas[another poet], who was there next to me, I would have been dead.”

three women kneel in a road holding a banner protesting against the shootings
On their knees: women protest against the shootings, which led to more than a month of street fighting in Athens. Photograph: Dmitri Kessel/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

He can now smile at the thought that only months after the killing in the square he was back at school, studying English on a British Council summer course. “We were enemies, but at the same time friends. In one battle I came across an injured English soldier and I took him to a field hospital. I gave him my copy of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Kidnappedwhich I remember he kept.”

It is illuminating to read the dispatches by British soldiers themselves, as extracted by the head censor, Capt JB Gibson, now stored at the Public Record Office. They give no indication that the enemy they fight was once a partisan ally, indeed many troops think they are fighting a German-backed force. A warrant officer writes: “Mr Churchill and his speech bucked us no end, we know now what we are fighting for and against, it is obviously a Hun element behind all this trouble.” From “An Officer”: “You may ask: why should our boys give their lives to settle Greek political differences, but they are only Greek political differences? I say: no, it is all part of the war against the Hun, and we must go on and exterminate this rebellious element.”

Cabinet papers at Kew trace the reactions in London: a minute of 12 December records Harold Macmillan, political advisor to Field Marshal Alexander, returning from Athens to recommend “a proclamation of all civilians against us as rebels, and a declaration those found in civilian clothes opposing us with weapons were liable to be shot, and that 24 hours notice should be given that certain areas were to be wholly evacuated by the civilian population” – ergo, the British Army was to depopulate and occupy Athens. Soon, reinforced British troops had the upper hand and on Christmas Eve Churchill arrived in the Greek capital in a failed bid to make peace on Christmas Day.

“I will now tell you something I have never told anyone,” says Manolis Glezos mischievously. On the evening of 25 December Glezos would take part in his most daring escapade, laying more than a ton of dynamite under the hotel Grande Bretagne, where Lt Gen Scobie had headquartered himself. “There were about 30 of us involved. We worked through the tunnels of the sewerage system; we had people to cover the grid-lines in the streets, so scared we were that we’d be heard. We crawled through all the shit and water and laid the dynamite right under the hotel, enough to blow it sky high.

“I carried the fuse wire myself, wire wound all around me, and I had to unravel it. We were absolutely filthy, covered [in excrement] and when we got out of the sewerage system I remember the boys washing us down. I went over to the boy with the detonator; and we waited, waited for the signal, but it never came. Nothing. There was no explosion. Then I found out: at the last minute EAM found out that Churchill was in the building, and put out an order to call off the attack. They’d wanted to blow up the British command, but didn’t want to be responsible for assassinating one of the big three.”

At the end of the Dekemvriana, thousands had been killed; 12,000 leftists rounded up and sent to camps in the Middle East. A truce was signed on 12 February, the only clause of which that was even partially honoured was the demobilisation of ELAS. And so began a chapter known in Greek history as the “White Terror”, as anyone suspected of helping ELAS during the Dekemvriana or even Nazi occupation was rounded up and sent to a gulag of camps established for their internment, torture, often murder – or else repentance, as under the Metaxas dictatorship.

Títos Patríkios is not the kind of man who wants the past to impinge on the present. But he does not deny the degree to which this history has done just that – affecting his poetry, his movement, his quest to find “le mot juste”. This most measured and mild-mannered of men would spend years in concentration camps, set up with the help of the British as civil war beckoned. With imprisonment came hard labour, and with hard labour came torture, and with exile came censorship. “The first night on Makronissos [the most infamous camp] we were all beaten very badly.

“I spent six months there, mostly breaking stones, picking brambles and carrying sand. Once, I was made to stand for 24 hours after it had been discovered that a newspaper had published a letter describing the appalling conditions in the camp. But though I had written it, and had managed to pass it on to my mother, I never admitted to doing so and throughout my time there I never signed a statement of repentance.”

Patríkios was among the relatively fortunate; thousands of others were executed, usually in public, their severed heads or hanging bodies routinely displayed in public squares. His Majesty’s embassy in Athens commented by saying the exhibition of severed heads “is a regular custom in this country which cannot be judged by western European standards”.

The name of the man in command of the “British Police Mission” to Greece is little known. Sir Charles Wickham had been assigned by Churchill to oversee the new Greek security forces – in effect, to recruit the collaborators. Anthropologist Neni Panourgia describes Wickham as “one of the persons who traversed the empire establishing the infrastructure needed for its survival,” and credits him with the establishment of one of the most vicious camps in which prisoners were tortured and murdered, at Giaros.

From Yorkshire, Wickham was a military man who served in the Boer War, during which concentration camps in the modern sense were invented by the British. He then fought in Russia, as part of the allied Expeditionary Force sent in 1918 to aid White Russian Czarist forces in opposition to the Bolshevik revolution. After Greece, he moved on in 1948 to Palestine. But his qualification for Greece was this: Sir Charles was the first Inspector General of the Royal Ulster Constabulary, from 1922 to 1945.

The RUC was founded in 1922, following what became known as the Belfast pogroms of 1920-22, when Catholic streets were attacked and burned. It was, writes the historian Tim Pat Coogan, “conceived not as a regular police body, but as a counter-insurgency one… The new force contained many recruits who joined up wishing to be ordinary policemen, but it also contained murder gangs headed by men like a head constable who used bayonets on his victims because it prolonged their agonies.”

As the writer Michael Farrell found out when researching his bookArming the Protestants, much material pertaining to Sir Charles’s incorporation of these UVF and Special Constabulary militiamen into the RUC has been destroyed, but enough remains to give a clear indication of what was happening. In a memo written by Wickham in November 1921, before the formation of the RUC, and while the partition treaty of December that year was being negotiated, he had addressed “All County Commanders” as follows: “Owing to the number of reports which has been received as to the growth of unauthorised loyalist defence forces, the government have under consideration the desirability of obtaining the services of the best elements of these organisations.”

Coogan, Ireland’s greatest and veteran historian, stakes no claim to neutrality over matters concerning the Republic and Union, but historical facts are objective and he has a command of those that none can match. We talk at his home outside Dublin over a glass of whiskey appositely called “Writer’s Tears”.

“It’s the narrative of empire,” says Coogan, “and, of course, they applied it to Greece. That same combination of concentration camps, putting the murder gangs in uniform, and calling it the police. That’s colonialism, that’s how it works. You use whatever means are necessary, one of which is terror and collusion with terrorists. It works.

“Wickham organised the RUC as the armed wing of Unionism, which is something it remained thereafter,” he says. “How long was it in the history of this country before the Chris Patten report of 1999, and Wickham’s hands were finally prised off the police? That’s a hell of a long piece of history – and how much suffering, meanwhile?”

The head of MI5 reported in 1940 that “in the personality and experience of Sir Charles Wickham, the fighting services have at their elbow a most valuable friend and counsellor”. When the intelligence services needed to integrate the Greek Security Battalions – the Third Reich’s “Special Constabulary” – into a new police force, they had found their man.

Manolis Glezos sitting at a desk
‘I carried the fuse wire myself: Manolis Glezos, senior MEP and ‘a man of humbling greatness’ in Brussels. Helena Smith Photograph: Helena Smith/Observer

Greek academics vary in their views on how directly responsible Wickham was in establishing the camps and staffing them with the torturers. Panourgia finds the camp on Giaros – an island which even the Roman Emperor Tiberius decreed unfit for prisoners – to have been Wickham’s own direct initiative. Gerolymatos, meanwhile, says: “The Greeks didn’t need the British to help them set up camps. It had been done before, under Metaxas.” Papers at Kew show British police serving under Wickham to be regularly present in the camps.

Gerolymatos adds: “The British – and that means Wickham – knew who these people were. And that’s what makes it so frightening. They were the people who had been in the torture chambers during occupation, pulling out the fingernails and applying thumbscrews.” By September 1947, the year the Communist Party was outlawed, 19,620 leftists were held in Greek camps and prisons, 12,000 of them in Makronissos, with a further 39,948 exiled internally or in British camps across the Middle East. There exist many terrifying accounts of torture, murder and sadism in the Greek concentration camps – one of the outrageous atrocities in postwar Europe. Polymeris Volgis of New York University describes how a system of repentance was introduced as though by a “latter-day secular Inquisition”, with confessions extracted through “endless and violent degradation”.

Women detainees would have their children taken away until they confessed to being “Bulgarians” and “whores”. The repentance system led Makronissos to be seen as a “school” and “National University” for those now convinced that “Our life belongs to Mother Greece,’ in which converts were visited by the king and queen, ministers and foreign officials. “The idea”, says Patríkios, who never repented, “was to reform and create patriots who would serve the homeland.”

Minors in the Kifissa prison were beaten with wires and socks filled with concrete. “On the boys’ chests, they sewed name tags”, writes Voglis, “with Slavic endings added to the names; many boys were raped”. A female prisoner was forced, after a severe beating, to stand in the square of Kastoria holding the severed heads of her uncle and brother-in-law. One detainee at Patras prison in May 1945 writes simply this: “They beat me furiously on the soles of my feet until I lost my sight. I lost the world.”

Manolis Glezos has a story of his own. He produces a book about the occupation, and shows a reproduction of the last message left by his brother Nikos, scrawled on the inside of a beret. Nikos was executed by collaborators barely a month before the Germans evacuated Greece. As he was being driven to the firing squad, the 19-year-old managed to throw the cap he was wearing from the window of the car. Subsequently found by a friend and restored to the family, the cap is among Glezos’s most treasured possessions.

Scribbled inside, Nikos had written: “Beloved mother. I kiss you. Greetings. Today I am going to be executed, falling for the Greek People. 10-5-44.”

Nowhere else in newly liberated Europe were Nazi sympathisers enabled to penetrate the state structure – the army, security forces, judiciary – so effectively. The resurgence of neo-fascism in the form of present-day far-right party Golden Dawn has direct links to the failure to purge the state of right-wing extremists; many of Golden Dawn’s supporters are descendants of Battalionists, as were the “The Colonels” who seized power in 1967.

Glezos says: “I know exactly who executed my brother and I guarantee they all got off scot-free. I know that the people who did it are in government, and no one was ever punished.” Glezos has dedicated years to creating a library in his brother’s honour. In Brussels, he unabashedly asks interlocutors to contribute to the fund by popping a “frango” (a euro) into a silk purse. It is, along with the issue of war reparations, his other great campaign, his last wish: to erect a building worthy of the library that will honour Nikos. “The story of my brother is the story of Greece,” he says.

There is no claim that ELAS, or the Democratic Army of Greece which replaced it, were hapless victims. There was indeed a “Red Terror” in response to the onslaught, and on the retreat from Athens, ELAS took some 15,000 prisoners with them. “We did some killing,” concedes Glezos, “and some people acted out of revenge. But the line was not to kill civilians.”

In December 1946, Greek prime minister Konstantinos Tsaldaris, faced with the probability of British withdrawal, visited Washington to seek American assistance. In response, the US State Department formulated a plan for military intervention which, in March 1947, formed the basis for an announcement by President Truman of what became known as the Truman Doctrine, to intervene with force wherever communism was considered a threat. All that had passed in Greece on Britain’s initiative was the first salvo of the Cold War.

Glezos still calls himself a communist. But like Patríkios, who rejected Stalinism, he believes that communism, as applied to Greece’s neighbours to the north, would have been a catastrophe. He recalls how he even gave Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet leader who would de-Stalinise the Soviet Union “an earful about it all”. The occasion arose when Khrushchev invited Glezos – who at the height of the Cold War was a hero in the Soviet Union, honoured with a postage stamp bearing his image – to the Kremlin. It was 1963 and Khrushchev was in talkative mood. Glezos wanted to know why the Red Army, having marched through Bulgaria and Romania, stopped at the Greek border. Perhaps the Russian leader could explain.

“He looked at me and said, ‘Why?’

“I said: ‘Because Stalin didn’t behave like a communist. He divided up the world with others and gave Greece to the English.’ Then I told him what I really thought, that Stalin had been the cause of our downfall, the root of all evil. All we had wanted was a state where the people ruled, just like our [then] government in the mountains, where you can still see the words ‘all powers spring from the people and are executed by the people’ inscribed into the hills. What they wanted, and created, was rule by the party.”

Khrushchev, says Glezos, did not openly concur. “He sat and listened. But then after our meeting he invited me to dinner, which was also attended by Leonid Brezhnev [who succeeded Khrushchev in 1964] and he listened for another four and a half hours. I have always taken that for tacit agreement.”

Lt Gen Ronald Scobie with two other military men at a desk. On 5 December 1944, imposed martial law and ordered the aerial bombing of the working-class Metz quarter of Athens.
Taking charge: Lt Gen Ronald Scobie (centre) who, on 5 December 1944, imposed martial law and ordered the aerial bombing of the working-class Metz quarter of Athens. Photograph: Dmitri Kessel/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

For Patríkios, it was not until the Soviet invasion of Hungary in 1956, that the penny dropped: a line had been drawn across the map, agreed by Churchill and Stalin. “When I saw the west was not going to intervene [during the Budapest uprising] I realised what had happened – the agreed ‘spheres of influence’. And later, I understood that the Dekemvriana was not a local conflict, but the beginning of the Cold War that had started as a warm war here in Greece.”

Patríkios returned to Athens as a detainee “on leave” and was eventually granted a passport in 1959. Upon procuring it, he immediately got on a ship to Paris where he would spend the next five years studying sociology and philosophy at the Sorbonne. “In politics there are no ethics,” he says, “especially imperial politics.”

It’s the afternoon of 25 January 2009. The tear gas that has drenched Athens – a new variety, imported from Israel – clears. A march in support of a Bulgarian cleaner, whose face has been disfigured in an acid attack by neo-fascists, has been broken up by riot police after hours of street-fighting.

Back in the rebel-held quarter of Exarcheia, a young woman called Marina pulls off her balaclava and draws air. Over coffee, she answers the question: why Greece? Why is it so different from the rest of Europe in this regard – the especially bitter war between left and right? “Because,” she replies, “of what was done to us in 1944. The persecution of the partisans who fought the Nazis, for which they were honoured in France, Italy, Belgium or the Netherlands – but for which, here, they were tortured and killed on orders from your government.”

She continues: “I come from a family that has been detained and tortured for two generations before me: my grandfather after the Second World War, my father under the Junta of the colonels – and now it could be me, any day now. We are the grandchildren of the andartes, and our enemies are Churchill’s Greek grandchildren.”

“The whole thing”, spits Dr Gerolymatos, “was for nothing. None of this need have happened, and the British crime was to legitimise people whose record under occupation by the Third Reich put them beyond legitimacy. It happened because Churchill believed he had to bring back the Greek king. And the last thing the Greek people wanted or needed was the return of a de-frocked monarchy backed by Nazi collaborators. But that is what the British imposed, and it has scarred Greece ever since.”

“All those collaborators went into the system,” says Manilos Glezos. “Into the government mechanism – during and after the civil war, and their sons went into the military junta. The deposits remain, like malignant cells in the system. Although we liberated Greece, the Nazi collaborators won the war, thanks to the British. And the deposits remain, like bacilli in the system.”

But there is one last thing Glezos would like to make clear. “You haven’t asked: ‘Why do I go on? Why I am doing this when I am 92 years and two months old?’ he says, fixing us with his eyes. “I could, after all, be sitting on a sofa in slippers with my feet up,” he jests. “So why do I do this?”

He answers himself: “You think the man sitting opposite you is Manolis but you are wrong. I am not him. And I am not him because I have not forgotten that every time someone was about to be executed, they said: ‘Don’t forget me. When you say good morning, think of me. When you raise a glass, say my name.’ And that is what I am doing talking to you, or doing any of this. The man you see before you is all those people. And all this is about not forgetting them.”

Timeline: the battle between left and right

Late summer 1944 German forces withdraw from most of Greece, which is taken over by local partisans. Most of them are members of ELAS, the armed wing of the National Liberation Front, EAM, which included the Communist KKE party

October 1944 Allied forces, led by General Ronald Scobie, enter Athens, the last German-occupied area, on 13 October. Georgios Papandreou returns from exile with the Greek government

2 December 1944 Rather than integrate ELAS into the new army, Papandreou and Scobie demand the disarmament of all guerrilla forces. Six members of the new cabinet resign in protest

3 December 1944 Violence in Athens after 200,000 march against the demands. More than 28 are killed and hundreds are injured. The 37-day Dekemvrianá begins. Martial law is declared on 5 December

January/February 1945 Gen Scobie agrees to a ceasefire in exchange for ELAS withdrawal. In February the Treaty of Varkiza is signed by all parties. ELAS troops leave Athens with 15,000 prisoners

1945/46 Right-wing gangs kill more than 1,100 civilians, triggering civil war when government forces start battling the new Democratic Army of Greece (DSE), mainly former ELAS soldiers

1948-49 DSE suffers a catastrophic defeat in the summer of 1948, with nearly 20,000 killed. In July 1949 Tito closes the Yugoslav border, denying DSE shelter. Ceasefire signed on 16 October 1949

21 April 1967 Right-wing forces seize power in a coup d’état. The junta lasts until 1974. Only in 1982 are communist veterans who had fled overseas allowed to return to Greece

 

__________________________________________________________________

Greece – The Hidden War

This is a British political documentary produced in 1986 and shown for just one and only time in British television, thereby being BANNED, concerning the involvement of the British Government in Greece’s political affairs during and after WW2, that is argued to have been the main catalyst in the breaking out of the Greek Civil War, followed by American involvement in the Civil War Battle (in line with the Truman Doctrine).

https://athenianvoice.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/greece-the-hidden-war-1-2/

Dis-Accumulation on a World Scale: Pillage, Plunder and Wealth

petras

Introduction: Over the past 30 years, wealth has grown exponentially and has become increasingly concentrated foremost in the upper .01%, then the .1%, followed by the 1% and the upper 10% – 20%.

The large scale, long-term concentration of wealth has continued through booms and busts of the real economy, the financial and IT crises. Wealth grew despite long-term economic recessions and stagnation, because the so-called recovery programs imposed austerity on 80% of the households while transferring public revenues to the rich.

The so-called ‘crises of capitalism’ has neither reversed nor prevented the emergence of an international class of billionaires who acquire, merge and invest in each other’s activities. The growth of wealth has been accompanied by the pillage of accumulated profits from productive sectors which are stored as wealth not investment capital.

The dispossession of capital and its conversion to private wealth subsequently led to the rapid expansion of the financial and real estate sector. Capital accumulation of profits has been thesource of private accumulation of wealth at the expense of wages, salaries, public welfare, and state revenues.

The growth of private wealth at the expense of productive investments is a world-wide phenomenon which has been facilitated by an international network of banks, political leaders and ‘regulators’ centered in the United States and England.

The single most important aspect of private wealth accumulation on a world-scale is criminal behavior by the elites in multiple locations and involves the violation of multiple laws and regulations.

The Chain of Illegality: From Exploitation of Labor to the Pillage of the Nation

The original source of private wealth is the exploitation of labor by capital,of which a small percentage of the profits are reinvested in expanding production in the ‘home market’ or overseas. The bulk of the profits are transferred into financial networks which in turn illicitly channel the funds into overseas accounts.

The movements of profits ‘overseas’ takes multiple forms (transfer pricing, phony invoices, etc.) and they are primarily converted to private wealth. These ‘international movements’ of profits are largely composed of mega-thievery or plunder by political and business leaders from ‘developing countries’. According to the Financial Times (17/11/14, p2). “Up to $1 trillion (dollars) is being taken out of developing countries every year through a web of corrupt activities involving anonymous shell companies that typically hide the identity of their true owners”. (my emphasis)

The $1 trillion of stolen profits and revenues from the ‘developing countries’ (Africa, Asia, South America) are part of a “corruption chain” which is organized, managed and facilitated by the major financial institutions in the US and UK. According to a World Bank report in 2011 “70 percent of the biggest corruption cases between 1980 and 2010 involved anonymous shell companies. The US and UK were among the jurisdictions most frequently used to incorporate legal entities that held proceeds of corruption” (Financial Times, 17/11/14, p2.).

This process of “taking out” or pillage of developing countries feeds into rent seeking, conspicuous consumption and other non-productive activity in the ‘developed countries’ or more accurately the imperialist states. The principle beneficiaries of the pillage of ‘developing countries’ by the local elites are their counterparts in the top 1% of the imperial countries, who control, direct and manage the financial, real estate and luxury sectors of their economies.

The very same financial institutions in the imperial countries (and their related accountancy, legal and consultancy arms) facilitate the pillage of trillions from the ‘developed’ countries to offshore sites, via massive tax evasion operations, hoarding wealth instead of investing profits or paying taxes to the public treasury.

Long-term, large scale pillage and tax evasion depends on the central role, at both ends of the world economy, of the financial sector. This results in the ‘imbalance of the economy’ – predominance of finance capital as the final arbiter on how ‘profits’ are disposed.

The extremely narrow membership in the dominant financial sectors means that its growth will result in greater inequalities between classes. A disproportionate share of wealth will accrue to those who pillage the revenues and profits of the productive sector. As a result so-called ‘productive capitalists’ hasten to join and lay claims to membership in the financial sector.

The links between ‘productive’ and ‘fictitious’ capital or financial swindle capital, defy any attempt to find a progressive sector within the dominant classes. But the effort to enter the charmed circle of the dominant financial 1% is fraught with dangers and risks . . . because the financial sector has a very dynamic and super-active capacity for swindles.

The entire process of de-capitalizing the economy is underwritten in the US by the financial elite’s controls over the executive branch of government, especially the ‘regulatory’and enforcement agencies -Security Exchange Commission, the Treasury and Justice Departments.

Financial institutions facilitate the inflow of trillions of dollars from the kleptocrats in the developing countries as well as the outflow of trillions of dollars by multi-nationals to off-shore tax havens. In both instances the banks are key instruments in the process of dis-accumulation of capital by dispossessing nations and treasuries of revenues and productive investments.

The ‘hoarding’ of MNC profits in offshore shell companies does not in any way prevent speculative activity and large scale swindles in the for-ex, equity and real estate markets. On the contrary, the boom in high-end real estate in London, New York and Paris, and the high growth of luxury goods sales, reflects the concentration of wealth in the top .01%, .1% and 1%. They are the beneficiaries of ‘no risk’ pillage of wealth in developing countries, receiving lucrative commissions and fees in laundering the illicit inflows of wealth and outflows by tax dodging multi-nationals.

The Inverted Pyramid of Wealth

A small army of accountants, political fixers, corporate lawyers, publicists, financial scribblers, consultants and real estate promoters make-up the next 15% of the beneficiaries of the pillage economies. Below them are the 30% upper and lower middle classes who experience tenuous affluence subject to the economic shocks, ‘market volatility and risks of downward mobility. Below them, the majority of wage, salaried and small business classes experience declining incomes, downward mobility, rising risks of mortgage foreclosure, job-loss and destitution among the bottom 30%.

Despite wide variations in the class structure between ‘developing’ neo-colonial and developed imperial states, the top 1% across national boundaries has forged economic, personal, educational, and social ties. They attend the same elite schools, own multiple private residences in similar high end neighborhoods, and share private bankers, money launderers and financial advisors. Each elite group has their own national police and military security systems, as well as political influentials who also co-operate and collaborate to ensure impunity and to defend the illegal financial flows for a cut of the wealth….

The investigatory authorities of each developed country tend to specialize in prosecuting rivalfinancial institutions and banks, occasionally levying fines – never imprisonment – for the most egregious swindles that threatens the ‘confidence’ of the defrauded investors.

Yet the basic structure of the pillage economy, continues unaffected – in fact thrives – because the ‘show’ of ‘oversight’ and judicial ‘charges’ neutralizes public indignation and outrage.

The Decisive Role of Dis-Accumulation in the World Economy

While orthodox economists elaborate mathematical models that have no relationship to the operations, agencies and performance of the economy and ignore the real elite actors which operate the economy, Leftist economists similarly operate with theoretical premises about capital and labor, profits and capital accumulation, crises and stagnation, which ignore the centrality of pillage, dis-accumulation, and the dynamic growth of wealth by the international 1%.

The research center, the Capital Financial Integrity Group provides a vast array of data documenting the trillion dollar illicit financial flows which now dominate the world economy.

US MNCs have ‘hoarded’ over $1.5 trillion dollars in overseas shell companies, ‘dead capital’, to avoid taxes and to speculate in stocks, bonds and real estate.

Mexico’s ruling elite organizes massive illicit financial flows, mostly laundered by US banks, ranging from $91 billion in 2007 to $68.5 billion in 2010. The massive increase in illicit financial flows is greatly facilitated by the de-regulation of the economy resulting from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Contrary to most leftist critics the mainbeneficiaries of NAFTA are not Canadian mine owners or US agro-business or auto manufacturers- it is the US and Canadian financial and real estate money launderers.

From 1960 to 2010 the Brazilian 1% pillaged over $400 billion dollars. These illicit financial flows are laundered in New York, Miami, London, Switzerland and Montevideo. In recent years the rate of pillage has accelerate: between 2000 -2012 illicit financial flows averaged $14.7 billion a year. And under the self-styled ‘Worker’s Party” (PT) regime of Lula DaSilva and Dilma Rousseff, $33.7 billion in illicit outflows were laundered annually – 1.5% of the GDP. Much of the pillage is carried out by private and public “entrepreneurs” in the so-called “dynamic” economic sectors of agro-minerals, energy and manufacturing via ‘trade mispricing’, import overpricing and export underpricing invoices.

According to a study published in the Wall Street Journal, (10/15/12), China’s elite’s illicit financial flows top $225 billion a year – 3% of national economic output. China’s 1%, the business-political elite, finance their children’s overseas private education, providing them with half million dollar condos. Illicit flows allow Chinese ‘investors’ to dominate the luxury real estate markets in Toronto, Vancouver, New York and London. They hoard funds in overseas shell companies. The Chinese corporate kleptocrats are the leaders in the drive to deregulate China’s financial markets – to legalize the outflows.

The scale and scope of China’s elite pillage has provoked popular outrage that threatens the entire capitalist structure – provoking a major anti-corruption campaign spearheaded by China’s President Xi Jinping. Thousands of millionaire officials and business people have been jailed, causing a sharp decline in the sales of the world’s luxury manufacturers.

India’s capitalists- as kleptocrats – have long played a major role in de-capitalizing the economy. According to the Financial Times (11/24/14, p3) the Indian elite’s illicit financial flows totaled $343 billion dollars from 2002 to 2011. The Indian Finance Ministry immediately threw up a smoke screen on behalf of the 1%, claiming the Indian elite had only $1.46 billion in Swiss accounts. Most of India’s wealthy have taken up with holing their illicit wealth to Dubai, Singapore, the Cayman and Virgin Islands as well as London

India’s neo-liberal policies eased the illegal outflows. Massive corruption accompanied the privatization of public firms and the allocation of multi-billion dollar assets such as mobile phones, coal fields and energy.

Indonesia, – percentage-wise is the leader in the outflow of illicit flows – fully 23% of annual output. The 1% elite of foreign and domestic capitalists, plunders natural resources, timber, metals, agriculture and dis-accumulates. Profits flow to foreign accounts in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney, Los Angeles, London and Amsterdam.

Ethiopia, with per-capita income of $365 dollars, is the site of vast pillage by its ruling elite. From 2000 to 2009, over $11.7 billion dollars in illicit financial flow was laundered mostly by US banks. These outflows enriched the Ethiopian and the US 1% and provoked famine for Ethiopia’s 90%.

Conclusion

The illicit financial flows surpass the capital invested in productive activity. The process of dis-accumulation of capital through relocation is channeled to overseas shell corporations and private bank accounts and beyond into financial holdings and real estate. The accumulation of private wealth exceeds the sums invested in productive activity generating investments and wages. Massive perpetual tax evasion means higher regressive taxes on consumers (VAT) and wage and salaried workers, reductions in social services, and austerity budgets targeting food, family and fuel subsidies

The past thirty years of deregulated capitalism and financial liberalization, is a product of the financial takeover of state regulatory agencies. The signing of free trade agreements has provided the framework for large scale long-term illicit financial flows.

While illicit financial flows have financed some productive activities, the bulk has vastly expanded the financial sector. The absorption of illicit flows by the financial elite has led to greater inequalities of wealth between the 1% – 10% and the rest of the labor force.

Illicit earnings via mega swindles among the largest and most respected US and EU banks, has curtailed the amount of capital which is available for production, profits, wages and taxes. The circuits of illicit capital flows militate against any form of long-term economic development – outside of the wealth absorbing elites which control both the financial and political centers of decision-making.

The growth and ascendancy of financial elites which pillage public treasuries, resources and productive activity, is the result of an eminently political process. The origins of de-regulation, free trade and the promotion of illicit flows are all made possible by state authorities.

First and foremost, finance capital conquered state power – with the cooperation of “productive capital”. The peaceful transition reflected the interlocking directorates between banks and industry, aided and abetted by public officials rotating between government and investment houses.

The entire African continent was pillaged by billionaire rulers, many former nationalistpoliticians (South Africa), ex-guerilla and ‘liberation leaders’ (Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau), in collaboration with US, EU, Chinese, Russian and Israeli oligarchs. Trillions of dollars were laundered by bankers in London, New York, Zurich, Tel Aviv and Paris. Growth of the commodity sector bolstered Africa’s decade long expanding GDP – and the mega-outflows of illicit earnings.

World-wide, billionaires multiplied profits ‘received’, but wages, salaries, pensions and health coverage declined! Swindles multiplied as outflows accelerated in both directions. The higher the growth in China, India, Indonesia and South Korea the bigger and more pervasive the corruption and outflows of wealth-led by “Communist” neo-liberals in China, Indian “free marketers” and Russian “economic reformers”.

The World Bank’s and IMF’s proposed “economic reforms” ‘freed’ the incipient political kleptocrats of controls and unleashed two-sided illicit financial flows – laundering funds from abroad and establishing trillion dollar offshore tax dodging citadels.

Illicit swindles dwarfed earnings from ‘capital accumulation’. The relations between capital and labor were framed by the organization and policies dictated by the directors and operators of the trillion-dollar financial networks based on the pillage of treasuries and the wealth of nations.

The center of China’s growth is shifting from manufacturing and the exploitation of labor, to real estate and “financial services”, as worker’s demand and secure double-digit increases in wages. The exploiters of labor turned predators of the national treasury. Under the pretext of “stimulating” the construction sector, real estate speculators in tow with Communist Party officials, absconded with over a trillion dollars from 2009 to 2014. According to Jonathan Anderson of the Emerging Advisors Group “over a trillion dollars” has gone missing in China in the past five years (Financial Times, 28/11/14, p 1.).

Factories still produce, agro-business still exports, the paper value of high tech companies has risen into the high billions, but the ruling 1% of the system stands or falls with the illicitfinancial flows drawn from the pillage of treasuries. To replenish pillaged treasuries, regimes insist on perpetual ‘austerity’ for the 90%: greater pillage for the 1%, less public revenues for health care which results in more epidemics. Less funds for pensions means later retirement– work til you die.

The plunder of the economy is accompanied by unending wars – because war contracts are a major source of illicit financial flows. Plunder oligarchs share with militarists a deep and abiding belief in pillage of countries and destruction of productive resources. The one reinforces the other in an eternal embrace – defied only by insurgents who embrace a moral economy and who proclaim the need for a total change – a new civilization.

The Fall of the Berlin Wall and the Multiplication of Western Walls

petras

Introduction: On November 9, 2014, Germany and its Western Allies, celebrated the ‘Fall of the Berlin Wall’ and the subsequent‘re-unification’of the ‘two Germanys’. Prime Minister Merkel described the ‘historic event’ as a “victory of freedom for all peoples in Europe and across the world.”


The entire Western media and officialdom echoed Merkel’s rhetoric, as 300,000 Germans gathered at the Brandenburg Gate hailed their leader as she spoke of ‘one people, one nation and one state in freedom, peace and prosperity…’ But Merkel’s discourse is a self-serving chauvinist fabrication which distorts the real consequences of a united Germany. Moreover, the Western celebration of ‘fallen walls’ is very selective.

The notion that Germany was ‘unified’ democratically is of dubious historical accuracy. The consequences of a powerful unified Germany have not led to a peaceful prosperous Europe and Germany’s current role in world politics, particularly its policies toward the Middle East, North Africa and the Ukraine, has been anything but peaceful.

The Walls of Freedom and the Walls of Prison

While NATO regimes celebrate the ‘Fall of the Berlin Wall’ as the highest expression of freedom, these same political leaders support, finance and promote the construction of oppressive walls throughout world: Unified Germany and its NATO partners have supported Israel’s Separation Wall dividing and caging millions of Palestinians for the better part of two decades. Apparently there are progressive and reactionary ‘walls’ – ‘good walls’ and ‘bad walls’. Unlike the Palestinians, Berliners were never deprived of basic necessities and subject to random displacement or even murder – the Western airlift provided all for West Berliners. Israel’s Separation Wall results in division and seizure of Palestinian land, ancestral homes, farms, schools and cultural sites while centuries-old olive groves are razed – depriving their owners of productive income.

The US has built its own massive ‘Security Wall’ along its Mexican border, incarcerating and even shooting refugees fleeing Washington’s militarization of Central America and Mexico. The US ‘Security’ Wall condemns millions of Mexicans and Central Americans to live in terror and misery in murderous US client narco-states. In the past seven years, over 100,000 Mexican civilians have been killed under the reign of US-backed Presidents, who were elected through fraud, as they relentlessly pursue the US mandated “War on Drugs”. Similar levels of killings ravage Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala where narco-gangs, with the backing of corrupt political, police and military officials, terrorize the cities and countryside. The death toll from US military interventions in Central America far exceeds those by the former-Soviet Union in Eastern Europe. The US border wall ensures that the survivors of this terror will remain exposed to the brutal rule of US-backed regimes.

At the same time, the civilized ‘European Union’ has erected its land and sea ‘Walls against refugees’ from Iraq, Syria, Libya, Lebanon and Palestine, fleeing NATO directed invasions and proxy wars in their countries. According to the UN Commission on Refugees, 13 million civilians have been displaced by US wars in Iraq and Syria. Many fleeing the war zones crash up against the European ‘legal walls’ – immigration restrictions, concentration or “internment” camps and prolonged detentions welcome their “flight to freedom”.

Chancellor Merkel chose not to mention these ‘civilized’ walls against people fleeing NATO’s ‘humanitarian interventions’. Nor have the Prime Ministers and Presidents of Europe or the US and its ‘ally’ Israel acknowledged the deaths and suffering…because these are their Walls, their own ‘barriers to freedom’.

Democratic Re-Unification or Annexation by Force

Merkel glosses over the crucial fact that the East Germans were never consulted or allowed to hold a free election to decide what kind of relation they would like with the West German regime. They were never asked under what terms and in what time frame “reunification” would take place. The West German regime seized control and dictated economic and social policies that destroyed their eastern neighbors’ economy by fiat. Hundreds of thousands of East German factory-workers faced brutal arbitrary firings as the capitalist ‘West’ shut closed state factories. East German farmers looked on helplessly as their prosperous, stable co-operatives were dissolved on the orders of West German officials. Where was the democracy in this policy of brutal annexation and political viciousness that slashed the former ‘East’ Germans living standards, multiplied unemployment ten-fold, greatly prejudiced the welfare benefits and employment of female workers and devastated pensioners.? Over 1.5 million Eastern German workers were uprooted and became economic refugees in the ‘West’ where wages were double the rate in ‘liberated’ East Germany. The wages were higher, but so was the job insecurity and the loss of social welfare provisions of the East. And if the death of 138 East Germans during 28 years, trying to escape over the Wall, was a tragedy, then what should we call thethousands who have drowned or died other horrible deaths trying to cross the Mediterranean to reach Europe or to scale the Wall separating the US and Mexico, or Israel’s Wall strangling six million Palestinians?

There are many ‘death strips’ denying Latin Americans, Palestinians, Middle Easterners their freedom from want, blocking their escape from US-NATO wars and Israeli genocide. But those‘atrocious walls’ were not mentioned by Chancellor Merkel at the Brandenburg Gate as she celebrated the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The scribes and scribblers from the New York Times, the Financial Times and the Washington Post did not mention these real, contemporary walls and their brutal toll. The selective denunciation of certain Walls contrasts with the politics of erecting ‘other’, more formidable Walls. Western walls of exclusion carry with them a denial of responsibility for the political and economic conditions that has driven millions of refugees to flee Central America, Palestine, the Middle East and North Africa.

US intervention and support of proxy death-squad regimes and the brutal military in Central America, from the 1960’s to the 1990’s, resulted in over 250,000 civilian deaths and the displacement of over 2 million refugees.

US-EU invasions and proxy wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria for over a decade have uprooted more than 13 million people and killed well over million civilians.

Israel’s wars and occupation against the Palestinian people have resulted in over 500,000 Jewish colonial settlers grabbing Palestinian land since 1967.The self-proclaimed Jewish state forcibly displaced hundreds of thousands and killed, maimed and jailed over 300,000. To admit that the West constructs and maintains its own system of atrocious walls inevitably points to the policy of decades of prolonged bloody imperialist wars leading to millions of refugees.

Imperial wars are characterized by the construction and maintenance of complex ‘Western Walls’, far deadlier and brutal than the Berlin Wall and less likely to fall. In fact, Western Walls are multiplying and being fortified by the latest surveillance technology. Larger budgets and more lethal arms for anti-immigrant police, has led to the brutal hunt, capture and incarceration of refugees – as Western regimes become more like police states .

The Malignant Consequences of the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the Annexation of East Germany

The annexation of East Germany vastly increased the economic power of Germany, providing German capital with several million skilled workers and trained engineers at no cost. Germany’s enhanced power dictated the course of the European Union’s economic policy. With the onset of the economic crisis, Germany’s capitalist and political elite were well positioned to dictate the terms of ‘recovery’ – and impose the entire burden on the working and middle classes of Southern Europe and Ireland. Germany’s ruling class, in firm control of the EU directorate, forced “austerity programs” on Greece, Portugal, Spain, Italy and Ireland. These regressive policies, which ensured that creditors would recover their loans with interest, led to spiraling unemployment rates, in some cases of over 50% for young people, and long-term, large-scale decline in living standards. ‘Unified Germany’ flexed its newly found economic muscle and extended its hegemony over the EU and ensured debt payments from its European subjects.

Unified Germany’s economic power led to renewed political and military aspirations to engage and assert its presence in the US led imperial wars in the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia and the Ukraine. By the end of the first decade of the 21st century ‘united Germany’ was profitably supplying weapons, logistics and military missions in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. It provided Israel with weapons and economic aid while Palestinians were expelled from their homes and land. Merkel’s imperial ambitions were revealed in her wholehearted backing of the far-right coup in Ukraine. Subsequently Germany imposed sanctions against Russia and supported the Kiev regime’s savage military blitz against the Donbass. In the Ukraine, Germany once again, as in the 1930’s, found allies among neo-Nazi collaborators and thugs willing to slaughter ethnic Russian speaking federalists in the East. Merkel’s dream is to convert the Ukraine into a German-American client state, where German exports would replace Russian goods and German agro-mineral investors can exploit the country’s raw materials.

Conclusion

It is obvious that Merkel, Obama and other imperialist rulers have a double standard with regard to ‘Walls’ – they denounce ‘Communist Walls’ while supporting murderous ‘Capitalist Walls’ against refugees; they celebrate the fall of the Berlin Wall while they build bloodier Walls against the victims of their imperial wars.

Apart from the cant and hypocrisy of Western officialdom, there is a political logic guiding these policies. The West’s criteria , for deciding which Walls are worthy of support and whichWalls should fall, runs along the following lines: Walls that keep out victims of imperialist wars are progressive and necessary for ‘national security’; Walls that protect Communist, nationalist or leftist regimes are repressive, dehumanizing and must fall.

If we consider the larger political consequences of an event, like the fall of the Berlin War and the subsequent arbitrary annexation of the East, it is clear that ‘re-unified’ Germany’s exercise of power has had a profoundly negative impact on the economies of Southern Europe and has concentrated dictatorial political powers in the hands of German decision-makers operating through EU headquarters in Brussels. Unified Germany has renounced its passive role and re-asserted its role in world politics: slowly at first as a passive junior partner to US imperialist wars in the Middle East and now, more decisively, by linking up with Ukraine rightists and thugs and imposing economic sanctions on Russia.

Germany’s ‘great fall’ after World War II required a half century to “put all the pieces together again”. But once in place, Germany seeks to project world power, particularly through its proxies in the EU and NATO, in alliance with US imperialism. The Fourth Reich increasingly looks back to the Third Reich.

All-Out War in Ukraine: NATO’s ‘Final Offensive’

petras

Introduction: There are clear signs that a major war is about to break out in Ukraine: A war actively promoted by the NATO regimes and supported by their allies and clients in Asia (Japan) and the Middle East (Saudi Arabia).


The war over Ukraine will essentially run along the lines of a full-scale military offensive against the southeast Donbas region, targeting the breakaway ethnic Ukraine- Russian Peoples Republic of Donetsk and Lugansk, with the intention of deposing the democratically elected government, disarming the popular militias, killing the guerrilla resistance partisans and their mass base, dismantling the popular representative organizations and engaging in ethnic cleansing of millions of bilingual Ukraino-Russian citizens. NATO’s forthcoming military seizure of the Donbas region is a continuation and extension of its original violent putsch in Kiev, which overthrew an elected Ukrainian government in February 2014.

The Kiev junta and its newly ‘elected’ client rulers, and its NATO sponsors are intent on a major purge to consolidate the puppet Poroshenko’s dictatorial rule. The recent NATO-sponsored elections excluded several major political parties that had traditionally supported the country’s large ethnic minority populations, and was boycotted in the Donbas region. This sham election in Kiev set the tone for NATO’s next move toward converting Ukraine into one gigantic US multi-purpose military base aimed at the Russian heartland and into a neo-colony for German capital, supplying Berlin with grain and raw materials while serving as a captive market for German manufactured goods.

An intensifying war fever is sweeping the West; the consequences of this madness appear graver by the hour.

War Signs: The Propaganda and Sanctions Campaign, the G20 Summit and the Military Build Up

The official drum- beat for a widening conflict in Ukraine, spearheaded by the Kiev junta and its fascist militias, echoes in every Western mass media outlet, every day. Major mass media propaganda mills and government ‘spokesmen and women’ publish or announce new trumped-up accounts of growing Russian military threats to its neighbors and cross-border invasions into Ukraine. New Russian incursions are ‘reported’ from the Nordic borders and Baltic states to the Caucuses. The Swedish regime creates a new level of hysteria over a mysterious “Russian” submarine off the coast of Stockholm, which it never identifies or locates – let alone confirms the ‘sighting’. Estonia and Latvia claim Russian warplanes violated their air space without confirmation. Poland expels Russian “spies” without proof or witnesses. Provocative full-scale joint NATO-client state military exercises are taking place along Russia’s frontiers in the Baltic States, Poland, Romania and Ukraine.

NATO is sending vast arms shipments to the Kiev junta, along with “Special Forces” advisers and counter-insurgency experts in anticipation of a full-scale attack against the rebels in the Donbas.

The Kiev regime has never abided by the Minsk cease fire. According to the UN Human Rights office 13 people on average –mostly civilians –have been killed each day since the September cease fire. In eight weeks, the UN reports that 957 people have killed –overwhelmingly by Kiev’s armed forces.

The Kiev regime, in turn, has cut all basic social and public services to the Peoples’ Republics’, including electricity, fuel, civil service salaries, pensions, medical supplies, salaries for teachers and medical workers, municipal workers wages; banking and transport have been blockaded.

The strategy is to further strangle the economy, destroy the infrastructure, force an even greater mass exodus of destitute refugees from the densely populated cities across the border into Russia and then to launch massive air, missile, artillery and ground assaults on urban centers as well as rebel bases.

The Kiev junta has launched an all-out military mobilization in the Western regions, accompanied by rabid anti-Russian, anti-Eastern Orthodox indoctrination campaigns designed to attract the most violent far right chauvinist thugs and to incorporate the Nazi-style military brigades into the frontline shock troops. The cynical use of irregular fascist militias will ‘free’ NATO and Germany from any responsibility for the inevitable terror and atrocities in their campaign. This system of ‘plausible deniability’ mirrors the tactics of the German Nazis whose hordes of fascist Ukrainians and Ustashi Croats were notorious in their epoch of ethnic cleansing.

G20-plus-NATO: Support of the Kiev Blitz

To isolate and weaken resistance in the Donbas and guarantee the victory of the impending Kiev blitz, the EU and the US are intensifying their economic, military and diplomatic pressure on Russia to abandon the nascent peoples’ democracy in the south-east region of Ukraine, their principle ally.

Each and every escalation of economic sanctions against Russia is designed to weaken the capacity of the Donbas resistance fighters to defend their homes, towns and cities. Each and every Russian shipment of essential medical supplies and food to the besieged population evokes a new and more hysterical outburst – because it counters Kiev-NATO strategy of starving the partisans and their mass base into submission or provoking their flight to safety across the Russian border.

After suffering a series of defeats, the Kiev regime and its NATO strategists decided to sign a ‘peace protocol’, the so-called Minsk agreement, to halt the advance of the Donbas resistance into the southern regions and to protect its Kiev’s soldiers and militias holed-up in isolated pockets in the East. The Minsk agreement was designed to allow the Kiev junta to build up its military, re-organize its command and incorporate the disparate Nazi militias into its overall military forces in preparation for a ‘final offensive’. Kiev’s military build-up on the inside and NATO’s escalation of sanctions against Russia on the outside would be two sides of the same strategy: the success of a frontal attack on the democratic resistance of the Donbas basin depends on minimizing Russian military support through international sanctions.

NATO’s virulent hostility to Russian President Putin was on full display at the G20 meeting in Australia: NATO-linked presidents and prime ministers, especially Merkel, Obama, Cameron, Abbott, and Harper’s political threats and overt personal insults paralleled Kiev’s growing starvation blockade of the besieged rebels and population centers in the south-east. Both the G20’s economic threats against Russia and the diplomatic isolation of Putin and Kiev’s economic blockade are preludes to NATO’s Final Solution – the physical annihilation of all vestiges of Donbas resistance, popular democracy and cultural-economic ties with Russia.

Kiev depends on its NATO mentors to impose a new round of severe sanctions against Russia, especially if its planned invasion encounters a well armed and robust mass resistance bolstered by Russian support. NATO is counting on Kiev’s restored and newly supplied military capacity to effectively destroy the southeast centers of resistance.

NATO has decided on an ‘all-or-nothing campaign’: to seize all of Ukraine or, failing that, destroy the restive southeast, obliterate its population and productive capacity and engage in an all-out economic (and possibly shooting) war with Russia. Chancellor Angela Merkel is on board with this plan despite the complaints of German industrialists over their huge loss of export sales to Russia. President Hollande of France has signed on dismissing the complaints of trade unionists over the loss of thousands French jobs in the shipyards. Prime Minister David Cameron is eager for an economic war against Moscow, suggesting the bankers of the City of London find new channels to launder the illicit earnings of Russian oligarchs.

The Russian Response

Russian diplomats are desperate to find a compromise, which allows Ukraine’s ethnic Ukraine- Russian population in the southeast to retain some autonomy under a federation plan and regain influence within the ‘new’ post-putsch Ukraine. Russian military strategists have provided logistical and military aid to the resistance in order to avoid a repeat of the Odessa massacre of ethnic Russians by Ukrainian fascists on a massive scale. Above all, Russia cannot afford to have NATO-Nazi-Kiev military bases along its southern ‘underbelly’, imposing a blockade of the Crimea and forcing a mass exodus of ethnic Russians from the Donbas. Under Putin, the Russian government has tried to propose compromises allowing Western economic supremacy over Ukraine but without NATO military expansion and absorption by Kiev.

That policy of conciliation has repeatedly failed.

The democratically elected ‘compromise regime’ in Kiev was overthrown in February 2014 in a violent putsch, which installed a pro-NATO junta.

Kiev violated the Minsk agreement with impunity and encouragement from the NATO powers and Germany.

The recent G20 meeting in Australia featured a rabble-rousing chorus against President Putin. The crucial four-hour private meeting between Putin and Merkel turned into a fiasco when Germany parroted the NATO chorus.

Putin finally responded by expanding Russia’s air and ground troop preparedness along its borders while accelerating Moscow’s economic pivot to Asia.

Most important, President Putin has announced that Russia cannot stand by and allow the massacre of a whole people in the Donbas region.

Is Poroshenko’s forthcoming blitz against the people of southeast Ukraine designed to provoke a Russian response – to the humanitarian crisis? Will Russia confront the NATO-directed Kiev offensive and risk a total break with the West?

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James Petras latest book is THE POLITICS OF IMPERIALISM:THE US,ISRAEL AND THE MIDDLE EAST (CLARITY PRESS:ATLANTA)

GREEK BANKS ARE PROVEN TO BE NEAR DEATH. GREEK PEOPLE WILL FOLLOW THIS PATTERN CLOSELY.

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by S. Katsoulis*

 

I’m sure you know by now. The hard working people at the ECB led by it’s VP Vítor Constâncio, kept themselves busy throughout the weekend  of 25-26 October (hopefully they did charge the appropriate overtime) in order to complete the much needed stress tests for the Greek banks and also the rest of the E.U.’s banks.

First impressions

The first obvious observation that someone could make is the fantastic technical expertise that was used to cook up the numbers in the 172 page document [1]. The second thing that can be observed is the top positions that 2 of out indigenous banks have acquired, given that they are sitting at the first and third positions in the list of mentioned banks. A little lower, at position 14 we can spot the third Greek bank, which means that 3 our of four Greek banks are having some issues…It would also be impossible not to be amazed by the “high marks” that our fellow Cypriot banks got, in addition to quite a few other monetary institutions around the E.U. Finally, one could not be oblivious to the frantically happy announcements of the Greek governmental regime that the stress tests have concluded that we have a complete and utter success. At the same time however, there is not a single human being in Greece that has not thought about the possibility that something is amiss here. And they are right… 

 

 

A quick and deeper analysis

One thing that the unsuspecting reader of this report must keep in mind, is that the subject matter here is bank stress testing. And therefore, if a banking institution is mentioned in this document, there must be a very good reason for it. The next thing one must consider seriously, is why exactly these institutions are mentioned. If we have a look at the table that is present in page 10 of the document, we will see the column titled “Capital shortfall”. Upon addition of the numbers for the Greek banks, we see that the shortfall for these banks is 8.72 billion and that the total shortfall reaches 24,62 billion euros. This means that about 35,4% of the total European banking system’s shortfall, belongs to the Greek banks.

One thing must already have become apparent. One could not claim that this 35,4% deficit as compared to all other EU institutions, creates a positive picture. But unfortunately for us, there are more issues to be found in the report. Take for example the total absence of any mention of the deflation rates that are present in 8 of the Eurozone member states [Fig 1], which, if nothing else, should be a major and heavy parameter in any model that attempts to predict the financial future in any of these 8 countries.

Fig 1 [2]

This absence of any mention to deflation is a very serious matter, not only because taking such a serious parameter out of your models can lead to grossly wrong results. But because this presence of deflation, makes it clear that the deficits should be even larger than reported, simply because deflation is an expression of the markets low activity.

This leads naturally to a first analysis of the expectations that are presented in the report: In another column of the same report we see the title “Net eligible capital raised”, which essentially expresses some forecasts on how much of the shortfalls which were mentioned above, will somehow be replenished. To total of this “net capital” which “will be raised” for the Greek banks, is 6,36 billion and based on this number, we see that there will still be a deficit of about 2,36 billion for the Greek banks and 6,03 billion respectively for the whole EU banking system, keeping in mind that this is always based on the models employed by the ECB for this specific test run. But once one realizes that the economic reality (such as the deflation values) of these economies are essentially ignored, then the positive interpretations of this report can only be seen as a fraud of unprecedented proportions…

These results are leading inevitably to more mandatory “corrections”…

So there we have it. The real data as presented by the ECB stress test farce, show the indisputable negative condition of Greece’s banking system, but also in the European South. What is truly impressive, is not the way the Greek regime tries to show and unreal positiveness and this audacious reversing of reality. It is more than clear that the whole banking system is drowning in huge, bad debt. But still, no one in Greece, with the exception of the United Popular Front (E.PA.M.), will dare to ask the glaringly obvious questions: HOW did these shortfalls come to being, and WHO managed these institutions while these deficits were piling up? Will anyone ever pay for this massive squandering of peoples savings?

But it seems that these kind of questions are irrelevant to the Greek regime and it’s Mainstream Media outlets, who are seemingly doing everything they can to avoiding asking these questions. Instead, they are already promoting the idea and are priming the Greek population to the idea that these so called “shortfalls” will have to be paid. After all, what is a measly 2,36 billion to an already debt ridden and dying nation? Nothing much, apparently, even though this means that more more blood sucking will ensue.

These deficits will need to be corrected we are told, because it is a well known fact that our regimes here in Greece have a standing policy: Bow down to the demands of whomever supports the salvation of the banksters. And what are the methods by which Greece’s undemocratic powers save the banksters? The answer is well known and one does not need to look very far or be too creative. Bail ins, taxing to death and the general looting of everything. That was to be expected, some will say. But it was not expected, to some at least, that even the political opposition would rise as yet another defender of the poor banks, leaving the Greek people completely undefended in the political arena. And what was even more unexpected, is the fact that the majority of Greeks let this whole thing become so unbelievably nasty and are still expecting some third party to offer them salvation.

 
Sources:

[1] AGGREGATE REPORT ON THE COMPREHENSIVE ASSESSMENT, October 2014 –https://www.ecb.europa.eu/pub/pdf/other/aggregatereportonthecomprehensiveassessment201410.en.pdf

[2] For Fig 1: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-26/chart-crushes-all-credibility-ecbs-latest-stress-test

* S Katsoulis is a member of the P.S. of the United Popular Front Greek political party(Ε.ΠΑ.Μ.).

The Con-man Cornered: Obama and the Democratic Debacle of 2014

petras
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Introduction: The meteoric rise to power of Barack Obama in 2008 was propelled by one of the greatest demagogic US Presidential campaigns of all time: To millions of young Americans, he promised to end the US wars in the Middle East. To millions of working and middle class voters, he promised to end the economic crisis by confronting Wall Street.


To women, he promised to protect and expand their social rights and end the gender gap in wages and salaries. To human rights and civil liberties activists, he promised to end police state surveillance and torture, and to close the Guantanamo concentration camp, which had denied political prisoners a fair and open trial. To blacks, he promised higher living standards and greater racial equality in income. To Latino-Americans, he promised immigration reform facilitating a path to citizenship for long-term residents. Overseas he spoke in Cairo of a “new chapter” in US policy toward the Muslim world. To Russia, he promised President Putin he would ‘reset relations’ – toward greater co-operation.

Obama’s rhetorical flourishes attracted millions of young activists, women and minority voters and leaders to work for his election and the Democratic Party. He won a resounding victory! And the Democrats took control of the House and Senate.

Obama Embraces the Rightwing Agenda

The rhetorical exercise was a massive smoke screen. For his electoral campaign Obama raised over one billion dollars from the ‘1%’ – Wall Street bankers, Hollywood media moguls, Silicon Valley venture capitalists, Chicago Zionists and the Mid-Western business elite. Obama was clearly playing a double game – talking to “the people” and working for ‘the bosses’.

A few analysts cut through the demagogy and identified Obama as the ‘Greatest Con-Man of recent times”, the Washington counterpart of the great contemporary Wall Street swindler Bernard ‘Bernie’ Madoff.

According to the somewhat more skeptical liberals and progressives, Obama would have to ‘choose’ between those who elected him and those who groomed and bankrolled him.

Obama quickly and decisively resolved the progressives’ ‘dilemma’. He re-appointed the two central officials who designed disgraced President Bush Jr’s war policy and Wall Street bailout: Robert Gates was confirmed as Secretary of Defense and Timothy Geithner was renewed as Treasury Secretary. Obama followed by teaming up with the head of the Federal Reserve, Benjamin Shalom Bernacke and Treasury Secretary Geithner to launch a multi-year trillion dollar bailout of Wall Street, while hundreds of thousands of Obama voters had their mortgages foreclosed and millions of workers, who voted Democratic were fired and remained unemployed, because Washington prioritized Wall Street recovery of profitability over funding job-creating public works.

In response, millions of indignant citizens repudiated the Washington bailout and Congresstemporarily shelved approval. However, the White House and the Democratic majority in both Houses, reversed course and approved the biggest State –to- Bankers handout in US – or for that matter, world – history.

If the Obama’s ‘First Wave of Reaction’ appointed powerful Wall Street clones and Pentagon war hawks to his cabinet and the ‘Second Wave of Reaction’ led to sacrificing workers’ incomes, employment and living standards, so that Wall Street could return to profitability, and the ‘Third Wave of Reaction’ was the escalation of the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama has dispatched tens of thousands of US combat troops to ‘end the war by expanding the war’!

The Democratic Electorate Strikes Back: 2010

By the end of 2010, sufficient masses of Obama and Democratic voters were disenchanted to the point of not voting in the Congressional elections: The Democrats lost control of the House of Representatives.

The most lucid and clearheaded progressives understood that nothing more was to be gained by waiting patiently ‘at the gate, like benighted pilgrims’ for their president Obama’s gaze to ‘turn left’ or for the Democrats to reverse course in Congress. Hundreds of thousands of citizens shook off the trickster’s spell and took to the streets blocking financial districts.‘Occupy Wall Street’ – direct action in the streets, citizens clearly targeted the principle source of the economic crisis and the real power behind the demagogic rhetoric of the White House confidence man.

Federal, state and local police broke up, arrested and incarcerated the peaceful activists. The Occupy Wall Street movement, under massive and coordinated police-state siege, and without political direction, dispersed and disintegrated.

The ‘Fourth Wave of reaction’ was illuminated by the Snowden revelations of National Security Agency (NSA) intrusive spying into the lives of hundreds of millions of Americans as well as allied leaders in four continents – and unimaginable numbers of citizens in countries around the world. The White House gave unconditional backing to the entire, gargantuan police state apparatus and its unconstitutional intervention into everyday life of individuals and their families. Hundreds of thousands of civil libertarians, human rights activists and attorneys and millions of liberal democrats were shocked by Obama’s blatant refusal to rein-in or even acknowledge the enormous scope of illegal domestic spying.

The ‘Fifth Wave of Reaction’ was the cumulative impact of five years of nurturing Wall Street profits and ignoring working and middle class income and declining living standards. Thanks to virtually free federal ‘bailout’ money, Wall Street borrowed and invested overseas -reaping returns triple the miniscule interest rates in the US. They speculated on the stock market. The ‘D-J boom’ continued for five years while real incomes of most Americans continued to decline. Young Democratic voters, who had believed the con-man, remained mired at entry level jobs barely paying room and board. The ‘Audacity of Hope’ became the ‘Humiliation of Return’ into their parents’ homes for millions of young workers unable to support themselves…

Disenchantment Deepens

Millions of Latino citizens, who were conned into believing that Obama would provide a ‘road-map to citizenship’ for twelve million fellow immigrants, discovered that the real Obama policy toward immigrants was a ‘road map to violent arrest, incarceration and deportation’: A recordtwo million immigrants were expelled in five years, exceeding the totals of all previous Presidents, even the most rabid rightwing Republicans.

Probably the most egregious and cynical con-job of all was the mega-con Obama perpetrated on Afro-Americans. More than any other group in the US, Afro-Americans have supported Barack Obama: Ninety-five percent voted for the ‘First Afro-American President’.

Under President Obama, Afro-Americans have lost more personal wealth than under any president since the Great Depression. Many key indicators show that the economic conditions of Afro-Americans have worsened dramatically under Obama.

According to the US Federal Reserve’s survey of consumer finances, between 2009-2014, non-white household incomes have declined by nearly a tenth to $33,000 a year. Median incomes fell by five percent. Data on net wealth – assets minus liabilities – tells an even more brutal story. The median non-white family today has a net worth of just $18,100 – almost a fifth lower than it was when Obama took office. In contrast, white median wealth increased by one percent to $142,000. In 2009 white households were seven times richer than blacks; that gap is now eightfold. Both in relative and absolute terms, black Americans are doing much worse under President Obama. His ‘Wall Street First’ agenda (bailing out the banksters and mortgage swindlers) has relegated Afro-Americans to last place. Racial inequalities have deepened because Obama, who may have ‘shot some hoops’ on an urban ghetto playground and dressed up as a ‘black role model’, in fact, oversaw an increasingly segregated and deteriorating school system. In Washington, he marginalized African-American concerns about double digit rates of unemployment in Detroit and other urban centers, while offering pompous, stern ‘moral’lectures to unemployed blacks about their ‘family responsibilities’.

Obama’s demagogy and deceptive populist posturing bamboozled most progressive voters for a period of time, but after five waves of reaction, many of the activists ‘wised up’ – first in the streets and then in the elections – by refusing to vote for Democrats running in the Congressional elections of 2014.

The Democratic Debacle of 2014

The major reason for the Democrat’s debacle in the ‘mid-term elections’ was the high rate of abstention and lack of activists getting out the vote. In many states, where the Democrats lost, the overall rate of abstention among eligible voters approached seventy percent. And there is reason to believe that the vast majority of non-voters (aka – the ‘none of the above’ voters) were Democrats, people disenchanted or hostile to Obama’s betrayals and, in particular, voters who believed that he had deceived or ‘conned them’.

Young people’s participation in this election, a major factor in mobilizing voters for Obama in 2008 and 2012 and doubly deceived, were notable by their absence: Young voters’ share of the electorate declined from 19% in 2012 to 13% in 2014. Parallel declines were documented in Latino-American and Afro-American turn-outs.

For those who voted, nearly half (45%) said that the ‘economy was the key consideration’ and by economy they didn’t mean Wall Street’s booming profits, or record high Dow Jones Stock quotes, which White House Democrats had hailed as their ‘economic success’. For the American middle and working class voters ‘ the economy’ that drove some to vote on November 4, 2014, was measured in the deterioration of affordable health insurance coverage and pension plans, the decline of living standards and the growth of ‘dead-end’ low-paid, contingent employment that rendered the lives and future increasingly unstable.

Most former Obama voters did not defect to the Republicans: They realized that both Democrats and Republicans were responsible for the domestic economy-busting decade-long wars and Wall Street hand-outs. They did not vote: Most abstained! Some former Democrats and Independents, and not a few Republicans, turned their anti-Obama animus into a rabid racist rant against the black President and extended their anger toward people of color in general. Obama’s con game has aroused deep racist undercurrents in US politics.

If his image as the first African-American President inspired a moment of hope and promise for greater racial equality in this country, his reactionary economic policies in practice allowed rightwing politicians to divert white worker and middle class economic discontent away from the criminals and swindlers on Wall Street to racist hostility toward the beleaguered black communities.

Post-Elections: The Con-Man is Cornered

The new Republican Congressional majorities will continue to implement the fundamental economic and foreign policies of the Obama regime. Wall Street profits will continue to grow, income disparities between capital and labor will continue to sharpen and the highly militarized foreign policy of the last six years will become more overtly bi-partisan. The Democratic President will join with the Republican Congress in pursuing military confrontations in the Ukraine and in sending more US troops to Syria and Iraq. Under pressure from Israel and its powerful US supporters, increased sanctions against Iran will scuttle US negotiations with Tehran. Obama’s blockade of Cuba will continue, as will bi-partisan hostility to center-left governments in Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Brazil and Argentina. The grotesque narco-state terror and mass murder in Mexico and Central America will continue to fuel the massive refugee pressure on the US border and expose the hypocrisy of Washington’s humanitarianmilitary missions in the Middle East.

The Republicans rode to power by exploiting discontent with Obama’s ‘Five Waves’ of reactionary policies; they will now co-operate with him in launching a ‘6th Wave’. The Republican Congressional majority will embrace Obama’s proposal to ‘fast-track’ free trade treaties covering Asia and Europe, currently blocked by House Democrats and opposed by US trade unions.

The Republicans will join with Obama in backing corporate tax ‘reform’, which substantially reduces the tax on US multinational corporations’ overseas earnings in order to end the hoarding of profits in low tax countries – while intensifying austerity on American workers and the poor.

In other words, Obama will now openly coordinate with his Republican counterparts on an agenda they have shared from the first day he took office. This time Barack Obama, the Con-Man, will have to play it straight and cut the populist palaver– Republicans and their business partners demand economic payoffs and overseas military victories. Obama, the ‘cowering Con-Man’, has been unmasked by progressives and is cornered by the Republicans… and they have no further use for his congab

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James Petras latest book is “The Politics of Empire:The U.S, Israel and the Middle East
claritypress@usa.net

Putin to the Western Elites: World War III Is Inevitable

Posted on by Dave Hodges in DC Clothesline

In his strongest speech, ever, directed at the United States, in front of the rest of key members of the Western world, Putin drew a line in the sand with regard to American imperialism.

The following are excerpts of Putin’s speech delivered at the Valdai conference in Sochi, just a few days ago. The speech was directed at Western elites.

“Russia will no longer play games with the United States and engagein back-room negotiations… Russia is prepared for serious agreements, but only if these agreements are conducive to collective security… All systems of global collective security now lie in ruins. There are no longer any international security guarantees at all and the party responsible for the destruction of global collective security is The United States of America…

…The builders of the New World Order have failed by having built a sand castleRussia favors a conservative approach to introducing innovations into the social order, but is not opposed to investigating and discussing such innovations, to see if introducing any of them might be justified…

…Russia has no intention of building an empire of their own, but will not go fishing in the murky waters created by America’s ever-expanding “empire of chaos…

…Russia’s challenges lie in developing her already vast territory)…Russia will not attempt to reformat the world in her own image, but neither will she allow anyone to reformat her in their image. Russia will not close herself off from the world, but anyone who tries to close her off from the world will be sure to reap a whirlwind. Neither is Russia willing to act as a savior of the world, as she has in the past…

…Russia does not wish for the chaos to spread, does not want war, and has no intention of starting one. However, todayRussia sees the outbreak of global war as almost inevitable, is prepared for it, and is continuing to prepare for it. Russia does not war, nor does she fear it…

…Russia does not intend to take an active role in thwarting those who are still attempting to construct their New World Order, However, Russia will oppose their efforts if they begin  to impinge on Russia’s key interests. Russia would prefer to stand by and watch them give themselves as many lumps as their poor heads can take. But those who manage to drag Russia into this process, through disregard for her interests, will be taught the true meaning of pain…

…Russia’s will rely not on the elites to set the tone for the future, and these decisions will result from the will of the people…”

Russia Is In War Mode

Russian air incursions are the worst that they have been since the height of the cold war between the Soviet Union and the United States.

The RAF has intercepted Russian military aircraft as they neared UK airspace for the second time  in the past week. This incident follows Norwegian interception of two Russian bombers last Wednesday.

The Baltic countries are also witnessing a dramatic increase in Russian military violations of NATO air space in which the Russians appear to be testing their ability to penetrate NATO’s air defenses.

Even the number of times that Japanese fighter jets have been forced to scramble to intercept Russian military aircraft has more than doubled in the last six months, amid  the escalating diplomatic tensions between Japan and Russia.

Russia has even violated American airspace in Alaska with multiple air incursions designed to test and discover the sophistications of  America’s ability to detect and intercept Russian fighters and nuclear bombers.

russian arctic oil and gas fields

Coupled with the air incursions, Putin has the Russian economy in war mode. He even has the Russian military prepared to militarily seize the “resource rich” Arctic.

Conclusion

Maybe we can call a "Mulligan" on his presidency.

Putin has warned that “I want to remind you that Russia is one of the most powerful nuclear nations,” Putin said. “This is a reality, not just words.”

The United States would be wise to prepare in kind. Is anyone else concerned that our first and last line of defense is Barack “let’s play nine” Obama?

Video of the Valdai Speech

ISIS and the USA: Expansion and Resistance by Decapitation

petras

Introduction: In order to overcome massive US and world public opposition to new wars in the Middle East, Obama relied on the horrific internet broadcasts of ISIS slaughtering two American hostages, the journalists James Foley and Steve Sotloff, by decapitation. These brutal murders were Obama’s main propaganda tool to set a new Middle East war agenda – his own casus belli bonanza!

 

This explains the US Administration’s threats of criminal prosecution against the families of Foley and Stoloff when they sought to ransom their captive sons from ISIS.

With the American mass media repeatedly showing the severed heads of these two helpless men, public indignation and disgust were aroused with calls for US military involvement to stop the terror. US and EU political leaders presented the decapitations of Western hostages by the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) as a direct and mortal threat to the safety of civilians in the US and Europe. The imagery evoked was of black-clad faceless terrorists, armed to the teeth, invading Europe and the US and executing innocent families as they begged for rescue and mercy.

The problem with this propaganda ploy is not the villainy and brutal crimes celebrated by ISIS, but the fact that Obama’s closest ally in his seventh war in six years is Saudi Arabia, a repugnant kingdom which routinely decapitates its prisoners in public without any judicial process recognizable as fair by civilized standards – unless tortured ‘confessions’ are now a Western norm. During August 2014, when ISIS decapitated two American captives, Riyadh beheaded fourteen prisoners. Since the beginning of the year the Saudi monarchy has decapitated more than 46 prisoners and chopped off the arms and limbs of many more. During Obama and Kerry’s recent visit to Saudi Arabia, horrendous decapitations were displayed in public. These atrocities did not dim the bright smile on Barak Obama’s face as he strolled with his genial royal Saudi executioners, in stark contrast to the US President’s stern and angry countenance as he presented the ISIS killing of two Americans as his pretext for bombing Syria.

The Western mass media are silent in the face of the Saudi Kingdom’s common practice of public decapitation. Not one among the major news corporations, the BBC, the Financial Times, the New York Times, the Washington Post, NBC, CBS and NPR, have questioned the moral authority of a US President who engages in selective condemnation of ISIS while ignoring the official Saudi state beheadings and the amputations.

Decapitation and Dismemberment: By Dagger and Drones

The ISIS internet videos showing gaunt, orange-suited Western prisoners and their lopped-off heads have evoked widespread dismay and fear. We are repeatedly told: ‘ISIS is coming to get us!’ But ISIS is open and public about their criminal acts against helpless hostages. We cannot say the same about the decapitations and dismemberments of the hundreds of victims of US drone attacks. When a drone fires its missiles on a home, a school, wedding party or vehicle, the bodies of living people are dismembered, macerated, decapitated and burned beyond recognition – all by remote control. The carnage is not videoed or displayed for mass consumption by Obama’s high commend. Indeed, civilian deaths, if even acknowledged, are brushed off as ‘collateral damage’ while the vaporized remnants of men, women and children have been described by US troops as ‘pink foam’.

If the brutal decapitation and dismemberment of innocent civilians is a capital crime that should be punished, as I believe it is, then both ISIS and the Obama regime with his allied leadersshould face a people’s war crimes tribunal in the countries where the crimes occurred.

There are good reasons to view Washington’s close relation with the Saudi royal beheaders as part of a much broader alliance with terror-evoking brutality. For decades, the US drug agencies and banks have worked closely with criminal drug cartels in Mexico while glossing over their notorious practice of decapitating, dismembering and displaying their victims, be they local civilians, courageous journalists, captured police or migrants fleeing the terror of Central America. The notorious Zetas and the Knights Templar have penetrated the highest reaches of the Mexican federal and local governments, turning state officials and institutions into submissive and obedient clients. Over 100,000 Mexicans have lost their lives because of this ‘state within a state’, an ‘ISIS’ in Mexico – just ‘South of the Border’. And just like ISIS in the Middle East, the cartels get their weapons from the US imported right across the Texas and Arizona borders. Despite this gruesome terror on the US southern flank, the nation’s principle banks, including Bank of America, CitiBank, Wells Fargo and many others have laundered billions of dollars of drug profits for the cartels. For example, the discovery of 49 decapitated bodies in one mass in May 2014 did not prompt Washington to form a world-wide coalition to bomb Mexico, nor was it moved to arrest the Wall Street bankers laundering the ‘beheaders bloody booty’.

Conclusion

Obama’s hysterical and very selective presentation of ISIS crimes forms the pretext for launching another war against a predominantly Muslim country, Syria, while shielding his close ally, the royal Saudi decapitator from US public outrage. ISIS crimes have become another excuse to launch a campaign of ‘mass decapitation by drones and bombers’. The mass propaganda campaign over one crime against humanity becomes the basis for perpetrating even worse crimes against humanity. Many hundreds of innocent civilians in Syria and Iraq will be dismembered by ‘anti-terrorist’ bombs and drones unleashed by another of Obama’s ‘coalition’.

The localized savagery of ISIS will be multiplied, amplified and spread by the US-directed ‘coalition of the willing decapitators’. The terror of hooded beheaders on the ground will be answered and expanded by their faceless counterparts in the air, while delicately hiding the heads rolling through the public squares of Riyadh or the headless bodies displayed along the highways of Mexico … and especially ignoring the hidden victims of US-Saudi aggression in the towns and villages of Syria.

Ukraine – Truce or Trojan Horse: Retreat, Re-Armament and Relaunch

petras

09.12.2014 :: Analysis

Introduction: The NATO proxy war in the Ukraine started with the violent US-EU-sponsored overthrow of the elected government via a mob putsch in February 2014. This was well financed at $5 billion, according to President Obama’s Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, Victoria Nuland.

The result was a junta, composed of neo-liberal puppets, rightist nationalists and fascists, which immediately proceeded to purge the Ukrainian legislature of any politicians opposed to the coup and Kiev’s submission to the European Union and NATO. The NATO-sponsored client regime then moved swiftly to extend its control by centralizing power and overturning the official policy of bilingualism (Russian and Ukrainian) in the southeastern regions. It was preparing to break its long-standing agreement over the huge Russian naval base in Crimea and renege on its massive debts to Russia for gas and oil imports.

These extremist measures by a violent coup regime amounted to a radical break with existing economic, cultural and political institutions and, naturally, provoked a robust response from large sectors of the population. The overwhelmingly Russian speaking majority in Crimea convoked a referendum with 90% voter participation: 89% voted to secede and rejoin Russia. The ethnic Russian and bilingual, industrialized southeast regions of Ukraine organized their own referenda, formed popular militias and prepared for an armed response from what they viewed as an illegal junta in Kiev. Threatened by the new measures against their language and traditional and economic ties with Russia, the resistance drew its fighters from the vast reservoir of skilled industrial workers, miners and local business people who understood that they would lose thousands of jobs and access to the Russian markets as well as cultural and family links under the boot of the EU-NATO puppet in Kiev.

For critical sections of Ukraine, the Kiev junta was illegitimate, so the NATO overseers, cooked up an election with a pre-selected candidate, Petro Poroshenko, a millionaire oligarch, willing to serve as a ‘reliable’ proxy, despite his history of dubious ‘business’ deals, who would implement the Euro-US agenda. Despite large sectors boycotting the sham elections, the ‘victorious President’ Poroshenko immediately joined the EU, shredding the heavily subsidized and generous gas and oil agreements with Russia as well as cutting Ukraine off from its main export markets. He proposed to join NATO and convert Ukraine into a launching pad aimed at Russia. He eagerly signed an IMF agreement ending critical subsidies for low income Ukrainians, privatizing public enterprises and raising the cost of basic public services and food. He launched an all-out military campaign against the Donbass region, using missiles, air strikes, artillery and ground forces while assuring his masters in Washington and Brussels that he could easily smash all resistance to his dictatorial fiats and impose their radical retrograde agenda.

The scope and depth of the changes and the unilateral manner in which they were formulated and implemented provoked a widespread popular uprising in the southeast that cut across the entire social spectrum. The popular democratic nature of the opposition in the east attracted support throughout the region, reaching beyond the borders of Ukraine. The resistance easily captured Ukrainian military outposts while conscripted soldiers, ex-soldiers and local police units joined the resistance, bringing their arms with them.

The Kiev regime and its increasingly fascist shock troops responded with terror tactics, bombing civilian infrastructure and neighborhoods. In the ethnically-mixed city of Odessa, with its substantial Russian-speaking population, Kiev-based fascists torched the city’s main trade union building where civilian protesters had sought refuge, burning alive or later slaughtering over 40 trapped citizen demonstrators.

The terrorist tactics of the Kiev government spurred thousands more to join the resistance. Horrified and demoralized Ukrainian conscripts, who had been told they were fighting ‘Russian invaders’ defected or surrendered in large numbers. The spectacle of surrender and demoralization among its armed forces and police undermined this phase of Kiev’s offensive and led to a ‘legitimacy’ crisis.

The US-EU propaganda campaign intensified denying civilian resistance in the southeast any authenticity as an independent, democratic, national force by labeling them as ‘Russian separatists’ and ‘invaders’. Together with their puppet-‘President’ Petro Poroshenko, the US-EU tried to discredit the popular resistance via a major provocation: Ukrainian government air controllers in Kiev re-directed a civilian air liner, Malaysian Airlines Flt. 17, to fly directly over the war zone, shot it down killing almost 300 passengers and crew. The puppet in Kiev and their masters in Brussels and Washington then blamed the resistance, as well as Russia, for the crime!

The NATO-backed proxy regime’s tactic of terror boomeranged and caused even more outrage! More Ukrainian troops refused to fire on the own compatriots .The puppet regime in Kiev had to rely on the special fascist battalions eager to kill ‘Russians’. Many ordinary soldiers deserted rather than obey orders to fire heavy artillery shells into densely populated urban neighborhoods full of trapped civilians. Other troops crossed over into the safety of neighboring Russia where they surrendered and turned their arms over to the resistance.

The incredible strength of the southeast regional resistance came from several sources: First and foremost, they were defending home turf: their families, relatives, friends, neighbors, homes, workplaces, transport systems, hospitals and schools and they increasingly saw themselves as a nation confronting the ravages of a foreign-imposed dictatorship arbitrarily selling their principle economic enterprises and means of livelihood while submitting to the dictates of the US-EU controlled International Monetary Fund. This popular resistance was bolstered morally and materially by pro-democracy activists and militants from Euro-Asia, who understood that a NATO victory in Ukraine would lead to more coups in sovereign countries, more civil wars and brutal conquests throughout the region – a formula for economic and social disaster affecting tens, if not hundreds, of millions of people.

NATO’s heavy-handed presence behind the putsch in Kiev spurred a national liberation struggle in Ukraine and the growth of anti-NATO internationalism regionally. The battle was joined. The Kiev blitzkrieg halted in confusion. The battles for Donetsk and Lugansk turned the tide. The Resistance went on the offensive. Over 800 Kiev soldiers were killed. Thousands more were wounded, captured or deserted.

The Resistance was advancing westward and to the south threatening to create a land bridge to the Crimea and encircle an entire regiment. The puppet regime in Kiev panicked and pleaded for its EU and US patrons to intervene directly. Divisions within the junta deepened: the fascists demanded an all-out war against the Russian-speaking population and total mobilization. The neo-liberals, for their part, begged for direct NATO intervention.

Meanwhile, the EU and US imposed wide economic sanctions against Russia, unwilling to believe that the citizens in the Donbass region of southeast Ukraine would successfully resist their puppet in Kiev. They drank their own propaganda swill and blamed ‘Putin’, the Russian President, for the debacle. The increasing economic sanctions against Russia had no effect on the popular resistance in Ukraine as it took on the character of a national liberation struggle. However, the sanctions did provoke painful counter-measures from Russia, which slapped major embargos on EU and US agricultural products, deepening Europe’s economic recession. And there was a build up of NATO troops and joint military exercises on Russia’s borders in Poland, the Baltic States and over the Black Sea.

Finally the NATO powers realized that their puppet’s military conquest of the East was not going to be another ‘cake walk’, indeed it was turning into a brutal farce. From top to bottom, the junta’s armed forces were in shambles. The continued advance of the popular resistance and the onset of winter without Russian oil and gas could topple the regime in Kiev and force new elections free from NATO, the CIA and the machinations of US Assistant Secretary ‘F… the EU’ Victoria Nuland, Obama’s key strategist for Eastern Europe.

With NATO’s and Washington’s fears in mind, Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed a ‘compromise’ for Poroshenko, an immediate ceasefire and negotiations leading to a political settlement between Kiev and the rebels. In the face of a military debacle in the East and growing internal fissures, the puppet in Kiev agreed to the ceasefire.

Prospects for Peace with Justice

Poroshenko and his NATO overseers eagerly grabbed onto Putin’s peace plan to stave off the advance of the popular resistance and gain time to re-group, rebuild and re-supply Kiev’s armed forces. NATO leaders are counting on a ‘political’ settlement where they trade easily-broken political promises in exchange for the resistance demobilizing and disarming under Kiev’s authority. There is no indication that the NATO-Kiev axis intends to abandon their strategic goal of turning Ukraine into a NATO base and vassal state of the EU.

As the cease fire comes into effect, the NATO powers have organized two sets of military exercises within Ukraine and on its immediate border – clearly undermining Russia’s strategic interests. The ongoing military build-up is a sign that NATO intends to participate directly in crushing the popular resistance in the next round. It is just a matter of time for NATO and Kiev to trot out some pretext to end the ceasefire. Meanwhile, NATO is increasing the flow of arms, advisers and contract mercenaries to Kiev. The oligarch in Kiev, Poroshenko is attempting to bolster his ground forces by imposing a highly unpopular universal conscription. Even the citizens in the west of Ukraine can see the war is going badly with the return of wounded soldiers and caskets holding their sons and brothers.

Tactically Poroshenko/NATO may offer paper concessions, greater ‘autonomy’ . . . under the rule of the Kiev junta, and the acceptance of bilingualism, but political, administrative, legal and fiscal powers will not devolve to the democrats in Donesk and Lugansk to design and implement their own policies and protect their rights. The regime will demand the re-entry of ‘its army’ on the pretext of guarding borders against Russia. There will be no reparations for the massive loss of life and infrastructure in the region. Kiev will seek to surround and fragment the Resistance and eliminate the key cross-border sanctuary with Russia. The ultimate goal would be to squeeze and oust resistance-led regional self-government.

The prolongation of negotiations will be used to build-up Kiev’s military capabilities. Meanwhile more US-imposed EU economic sanctions against Russia give Washington greater power to expand its influence in Europe and deepen political and trade polarization between the EU and Moscow. The Ukraine crisis is only one part of the Obama regime’s strategy of global military escalation, which includes re-entry into Iraq, direct bombing of Syria (including Damascus) and increased sanctions against companies and banks trading with Iran and Cuba, as well as the encirclement and provocation of China.

An independent Russia is the real target and the annexation of the Ukraine is a mere stepping stone on the way to Moscow. Under this strategic (and insane) vision, the US and EU will never accept a neutral (NATO-free), independent, democratic Ukraine. The popular resistance in the country’s southeast must clearly understand this strategic vision and continue the fight. They must recognize that the only means to establish democracy and self-rule, free from NATO and IMF dominance, and free from the marauding gangs of Kiev-led Nazi thugs – the terrorist Azov, Aidar and Donbass battalions – is via a plebiscite for total national independence.

The current cease fire is a Trojan horse: within the bowels of these negotiations, Kiev warlords are busily preparing to unleash more of their military excrement – fascist hordes and the oligarchs’ private armies, the monstrous spawn of the NATO-armed Azov battalion under Nazi banners, sporting swastika tattoos and hate-filled insignias. The choice is clear.

 

source

WASHINGTON PILES LIE UPON LIE

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by Paul Craig Roberts

Ελληνικα

The latest Washington lie, this one coming from NATO, is that Russia has invaded Ukraine with 1,000 troops and self-propelled artillery.

How do we know that this is a lie? Is it because we have heard nothing but lies about Russia from NATO, from US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power, from assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland, from Obama and his entire regime of pathological liars, and from the British, German, and French governments along with the BBC and the entirety of the Western media?

This, of course, is a good reason for knowing that the latest Western propaganda is a lie. Those who are pathological liars don’t suddenly start telling the truth.

But there are even better reasons for understanding that Russia has not invaded Ukraine with 1,000 troops.

One reason is that Putin has invested heavily in diplomacy backed by unprovocative behavior. He would not risk his bet on diplomacy by sending in troops too few in number to have a decisive effect on the outcome.

Another reason is that if Putin decides he has no alternative to sending the Russian military to protect the Russian residents in eastern and southern Ukraine, Putin will send in enough troops to do the job quickly as he did in Georgia when the American and Israeli trained Georgian army invaded South Ossetia and was destroyed in a few hours by the Russian response. If you hear that 100,000 Russian troops accompanied by air cover have invaded Ukraine, it would be a more believable claim.

A third reason is that the Russian military does not need to send troops into Ukraine in order to stop the bombing and artillery shelling of the Russian populations by Washington’s puppet government in Kiev. The Russian air force can easily and quickly destroy the Ukrainian air force and artillery and, thereby, stop the Ukrainian attack on the secessionist provinces.

It was only two weeks ago that a fabricated report spread by the UK Guardian and the BBC that a Russian armored convoy entered Ukraine and was destroyed by the Ukrainian Military. And two weeks prior to that we had the hoax of the satellite images allegedly released by the US State Department that the corrupt US ambassador in Kiev spread around the world on social media allegedly showing that Russian forces were firing into Ukraine. One or two weeks from now we will have another lie, and another a week or two after that, and so on.

The cumulative effect of lie piled upon lie for most people is to build the view that the Russians are up to no good. Once this view is established, Western governments can take more serious moves against Russia.

The alleged entry of 1,000 Russian soldiers into Ukraine has been declared by NATO Brigadier General Niko Tak to be a “significant escalation in Russia’s military interference in Ukraine.” The champion liar Samantha Power told the US Security Council that “Russia has to stop lying.” The UK ambassador to the UN said that Russia was guilty of “a clear violation of sovereign Ukrainian territory.” UK prime minister Cameron warned Russia of “further consequences.” German chancellor Merkel announced that there would be more sanctions. A German Security Council advisor declared that “war with Russia is an option.” Polish foreign minister Sikorski called it Russian aggression that required international action. French president Hollande declared Russia’s behavior to be “intolerable.” Ukraine’s security council imposed mandatory conscription.

This suicidal drive toward war with Russia by Europe’s leaders is based entirely on a transparent lie that 1,000 Russian troops crossed into Ukraine

Of course the Western media followed in lock-step. The BBC, CNN, and Die Welt are among the most reckless and irresponsible.

The mountain of lies piled up by Western governments and media has obscured the true story. The US government orchestrated the overthrow of the elected government in Ukraine and imposed a US puppet in Kiev. Washington’s puppet government began issuing threats and committing violent acts against the Russian populations in the former Russian territories that Soviet leaders attached to Ukraine. The Russian people in eastern and southern Ukraine resisted the threat brought to them by Washington’s puppet government in Kiev.

Washington continually accuses the Russian government of supporting the people in the territories who have voted their separation from Ukraine. There would be no war, Washington alleges, except for Russian support. But, of course, Washington could easily stop the violence by ordering its puppet government in Kiev to stop the bombing and shelling of the former Russian provinces. If Russia can tell the “separatists” not to fight, Washington can tell Kiev not to fight.

The only possible conclusion from the facts is that Washington is determined to involve Europe in a war with Russia or at least in an armed standoff in order to break up Europe’s political and economic relations with Russia.

Europe’s leaders are going along with this because European countries, except for Charles de Gaulle’s France, have not had independent foreign policies since the end of World War II. They follow Washington’s lead and are well paid for doing so.

The inability of Europe to produce independent leadership dooms Russian President Putin’s diplomacy to failure. If European capitals cannot make decisions independently of Washington, there is no scope for Putin’s diplomacy.

Notice that the very day after Putin met with Washington’s Ukrainian vassal in an effort to resolve the situation, the new lie of Russian invasion was issued in order to ensure that no good can come of the meeting in which Putin invested his time and energy.

Washington’s only interest is in hegemony. Washington has no interest in resolving the situation that Washington itself created in order to bring discomfort and confusion to Russia. With the caveat that the situation could be resolved by Ukrainian economic collapse, otherwise the longer Putin waits to resolve the situation by force, the more difficult the task will be.

EXIT EURO!

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Ελληνικα

Francais

Assisi (Italy), 23 August 2014.

The National Coordination of the Italian Left against the Euro held its “European Forum 2014″ in Assisi (Italy) from 20 to 24 August 2014 which brought together a large number of participants, including countries in the European Union but also Ukraine and Russia. On this occasion the leaders of several radical political organizations of the European Union adopted a declaration in favour of withdrawing from the euro and the European Union.

In all countries of the EU and especially in the euro area, violent anti-social policies are pursued relentlessly by the European Union and its member governments : massive decline in social spending, wage deflation by blocking wages, lower payroll taxes, unjustified subsidies to large corporations supposedly to create jobs, privatization, dismantling of public services and social security, financialization of the economy and public budgets … The result is an exponential increase in mass unemployment and lack of job security.

The origin of this is to be found in the policies of the European Union, fully blocked by the Lisbon Treaty. The latter is based on all the neoliberal dogma that have already demonstrated their damage value to the interests of the working and middle classes. In the euro area the trade gaps between countries have worsened. The euro is a weapon of mass destruction against employment. The single currency is only used to protect the return on shareholders’ investment by maintaining a permanent and voluntary high level of unemployment.

The very essence of this European construction is based on the values and interests of the Western ruling classes : europeanism, atlanticism, capitalism, authoritarianism. Such a system cannot change its nature, it cannot be improved from within. It must be dismantled in order to build something radically new. The European Union is indeed the most sophisticated system in the world founded on an attempt to build a civilization based on market forces. The European Union is a horrendous system of domination and alienation from which the peoples need to be emancipated.

The European Union is a cornerstone of the neoliberal world order, with its giant multinational firms, and supranational institutions (WTO, IMF, World Bank, NATO, EU, OECD). The system has a main characteristic: to act relentlessly to dissolve the sovereignty of peoples on a national scale. It is indeed the best way to enable, the domination of big business to increase with no bounds   as evidenced by TAFTA. Destroying the nations is the guarantee for the dominant classes that there is no turning back to neoliberal “reforms”. As the sovereignty of the people cannot exist without national sovereignty, eliminating the nation is to eliminate democracy. It is therefore the means to suppress the capacity for the people to act and decide on their future. The fact that the European Union is one of the mainstays of the Kiev fascistic regime demonstrates its full alignment with NATO and American imperialism.

After years of exercise of power by Socialist, Labour or Social democratic parties in several countries of the European Union, it is now possible to take stock of their record. The assessment is overwhelmingly excruciating as can be seen in Greece, Spain, Portugal, and France … These parties are now openly neoliberal, they do not even pretend any longer to try to defend the working classes. They are all making way for large German-style coalition governments (governments uniting left and right parties), similar to those already implemented by the European Union in Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy. If the divide between the ruling class and the working classes is clearer from year to year, the one between the left and right is becoming increasingly blurred. Nothing essential separates the left from the right in many countries. The above-mentioned political forces are shaping the political environment that develops and enhances the growth of the far right, by allowing the gradual assimilation of the nation with an essentially ethnocultural definition of the extreme right, whereas for us the nation is strictly constitutional and political. To leave this central political concept of identity definition of the nation in the hands of the far right is seriously irresponsible, and shows that all these parties have given up the essential conditions of the very existence of both politics and democracy.

The reasons for the rise of far-right parties in the member countries of the EU are mainly due to the policies of austerity for working and middle classes which strike people with poverty and force them to compete. The far right is now alone to appropriate the idea and the symbols of the nation. And conversely the idea of nation ends up being equated with the extreme right. But the far right advocates a narrow view of the nation reduced to its sole identity dimension. Far from being anti-system, as it claims, the far right is actually an indirect agent serving the system and the ruling classes. These parties are the most nauseating in their xenophobic, chauvinistic and anti-union attitudes and prejudiced against all organizations that collectively represent the interests of the working classes.

It is urgent to rebuild a thought, a method of practice and a program in favour of the interests of the working classes and the middle classes. Key elements for us are:

– Total elimination of unemployment and job insecurity.

– Plans for the re-industrialization and nationalization of key strategic sectors of industry and services.

– The dismantling of financial markets.

– The cancellation and overthrow of the public debt.

– National protectionist measures in the framework of the universal Havana Charter of 1948.

– An environmental transformation in the mode of production.

– The withdrawal from supranational institutions that maintain the neoliberal world order, NATO, IMF, World Bank, WTO, EU and the euro.

We call this de-globalization. The core of this strategy and this program is to claim and assume the necessity of regaining national sovereignty for each country. That is to say, the decisive struggle for each country to preserve the authentically political characteristics of its society, where the people have the legal and institutional capacity to decide and implement what they consider corresponds to the general interest.

The signatories will organize a new international meeting at an even larger level. Aiming at bringing together widely all forces working to defend the interests of working and middle classes, for the withdrawal from NATO, the European Union and the euro, for full employment.

 

  • Borotba (Struggle): Sergei Kirichuk, Ukraine.
  • Committee “Euro Exit” (“Out of the euro ‘Committee): Wilhelm Langthaler, Austria.
  • National Coordinamento Sinistra contro Euro (National Coordination of Left against the Euro) Moreno Pasquinelli, Italy.
  • Frente Civico (FC – Civic Front): Manolo Pérez Monereo, Spain.
  • People’s United Front (EPAM): Antonis Ragousis, Greece.
  • Left Co-March, Kostas Kostopoulos, Greece.
  • Political Movement for the Emancipation of the People (M’PEP): Jacques Nikonoff and Joel Perichaud, France.
  • Plan B: Nasia Pliakogiammi, Greece.

 

COLONIZATION BY BANKRUPTCY: THE HIGH-STAKES CHESS MATCH FOR ARGENTINA

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By Ellen Brown *

If Argentina were in a high-stakes chess match, the country’s actions this week would be the equivalent of flipping over all the pieces on the board.

David Dayen, Fiscal Times, August 22, 2014

August 27, 2014 “ICH” – Argentina is playing hardball with the vulture funds, which have been trying to force it into an involuntary bankruptcy. The vultures are demanding what amounts to a 600% return on bonds bought for pennies on the dollar, defeating a 2005 settlement in which 92% of creditors agreed to accept a 70% haircut on their bonds. A US court has backed the vulture funds; but last week, Argentina sidestepped its jurisdiction by transferring the trustee for payment from Bank of New York Mellon to its own central bank. That play, if approved by the Argentine Congress, will allow the country to continue making payments under its 2005 settlement, avoiding default on the majority of its bonds.

Argentina is already foreclosed from international capital markets, so it doesn’t have much to lose by thwarting the US court system. Similar bold moves by Ecuador and Iceland have left those countries in substantially better shape than Greece, which went along with the agendas of the international financiers.

The upside for Argentina was captured by President Fernandez in a nationwide speech on August 19th. Struggling to hold back tears, according to Bloomberg, she said:

When it comes to the sovereignty of our country and the conviction that we can no longer be extorted and that we can’t become burdened with debt again, we are emerging as Argentines.

. . . If I signed what they’re trying to make me sign, the bomb wouldn’t explode now but rather there would surely be applause, marvelous headlines in the papers. But we would enter into the infernal cycle of debt which we’ve been subject to for so long.

The Endgame: Patagonia in the Crosshairs

The deeper implications of that infernal debt cycle were explored by Argentine political analyst Adrian Salbuchi in an August 12th article titled “Sovereign Debt for Territory: A New Global Elite Swap Strategy.” Where territories were once captured by military might, he maintains that today they are being annexed by debt. The still-evolving plan is to drive destitute nations into an international bankruptcy court whose decisions would have the force of law throughout the world. The court could then do with whole countries what US bankruptcy courts do with businesses: sell off their assets, including their real estate. Sovereign territories could be acquired as the spoils of bankruptcy without a shot being fired.

Global financiers and interlocking megacorporations are increasingly supplanting governments on the international stage. An international bankruptcy court would be one more institution making that takeover legally binding and enforceable. Governments can say no to the strong-arm tactics of the global bankers’ collection agency, the IMF. An international bankruptcy court would allow creditors to force a nation into bankruptcy, where territories could be involuntarily sold off in the same way that assets of bankrupt corporations are.

For Argentina, says Salbuchi, the likely prize is its very rich Patagonia region, long a favorite settlement target for ex-pats. When Argentina suffered a massive default in 2001, the global press, including Time and The New York Times, went so far as to propose that Patagonia be ceded from the country as a defaulted debt payment mechanism.

The New York Times article followed one published in the Buenos Aires financial newspaper El Cronista Comercial called “Debt for Territory,” which described a proposal by a US consultant to then-president Eduardo Duhalde for swapping public debt for government land. It said:

[T]he idea would be to transform our public debt default into direct equity investment in which creditors can become land owners where they can develop industrial, agricultural and real estate projects. . . . There could be surprising candidates for this idea: during the Alfonsin Administration, the Japanese studied an investment master plan in Argentine land in order to promote emigration. The proposal was also considered in Israel.

Salbuchi notes that ceding Patagonia from Argentina was first suggested in 1896 by Theodor Herzl, founder of the Zionist movement, as a second settlement for that movement.

Another article published in 2002 was one by IMF deputy manager Anne Krueger titled “Should Countries Like Argentina Be Able to Declare Themselves Bankrupt?” It was posted on the IMF website and proposed some “new and creative ideas” on what to do about Argentina. Krueger said, “the lesson is clear: we need better incentives to bring debtors and creditors together before manageable problems turn into full-blown crises,” adding that the IMF believes “this could be done by learning from corporate bankruptcy regimes like Chapter 11 in the US”.

These ideas were developed in greater detail by Ms. Krueger in an IMF essay titled “A New Approach to Debt Restructuring,” and by Harvard professor Richard N. Cooper in a 2002 article titled “Chapter 11 for Countries” published in Foreign Affairs (“mouthpiece of the powerful New York-Based Elite think-tank, Council on Foreign Relations”). Salbuchi writes:

Here, Cooper very matter-of-factly recommends that “only if the debtor nation cannot restore its financial health are its assets liquidated and the proceeds distributed to its creditors – again under the guidance of a (global) court” (!).

In Argentina’s recent tangle with the vulture funds, Ms. Krueger and the mainstream media have come out in apparent defense of Argentina, recommending restraint by the US court. But according to Salbuchi, this does not represent a change in policy. Rather, the concern is that overly heavy-handed treatment may kill the golden goose:

. . . [I] n today’s delicate post-2008 banking system, a new and less controllable sovereign debt crisis could thwart the global elite’s plans for an “orderly transition towards a new global legal architecture” that will allow orderly liquidation of financially-failed states like Argentina. Especially if such debt were to be collateralized by its national territory (what else is left!?)

Breaking Free from the Sovereign Debt Trap

Salbuchi traces Argentina’s debt crisis back to 1955, when President Juan Domingo Perón was ousted in a very bloody US/UK/mega-bank-sponsored military coup:

Perón was hated for his insistence on not indebting Argentina with the mega-bankers: in 1946 he rejected joining the International Monetary Fund (IMF); in 1953 he fully paid off all of Argentina’s sovereign debt. So, once the mega-bankers got rid of him in 1956, they shoved Argentina into the IMF and created the “Paris Club” to engineer decades-worth of sovereign debt for vanquished Argentina, something they’ve been doing until today.

Many countries have been subjected to similar treatment, as John Perkins documents in his blockbuster exposé Confessions of an Economic Hit Man. When the country cannot pay, the IMF sweeps in with refinancing agreements with strings attached, including selling off public assets and slashing public services in order to divert government revenues into foreign debt service.

Even without pressure from economic hit men, however, governments routinely indebt themselves for much more than they can ever hope to repay. Why do they do it? Salbuchi writes:

Here, Western economists, bankers, traders, Ivy League academics and professors, Nobel laureates and the mainstream media have a quick and monolithic reply: because all nations need“investment and investors” if they wish to build highways, power plants, schools, airports, hospitals, raise armies, service infrastructures and a long list of et ceteras . . . .

But more and more people are starting to ask a fundamental common-sense question: why should governments indebt themselves in hard currencies, decades into the future with global mega-bankers, when they could just as well finance these projects and needs far more safely by issuing the proper amounts of their own local sovereign currency instead?

Neoliberal experts shout back that government-created money devalues the currency, inflates the money supply, and destroys economies. But does it? Or is it the debt service on money created privately by banks, along with other forms of “rent” on capital, that create inflation and destroy economies? As Prof. Michael Hudson points out:

These financial claims on wealth – bonds, mortgages and bank loans – are lent out to become somebody else’s debts in an exponentially expanding process. . . . [E]conomies have been obliged to pay their debts by cutting back new research, development and new physical reinvestment. This is the essence of IMF austerity plans, in which the currency is “stabilized” by further international borrowing on terms that destabilize the economy at large. Such cutbacks in long-term investment also are the product of corporate raids financed by high-interest junk bonds. The debts created by businesses, consumers and national economies cutting back their long-term direct investment leaves these entities even less able to carry their mounting debt burden.

Spiraling debt also results in price inflation, since businesses have to raise their prices to cover the interest and fees on the debt.

From Sovereign Debt to Monetary Sovereignty

For governments to escape this austerity trap, they need to spend not less but more money on the tangible capital formation that increases physical productivity. But where to get the investment money without getting sucked into the debt vortex? Where can Argentina get funding if the country is shut out of international capital markets?

The common-sense response, as Salbuchi observes, is for governments to issue the money they need directly. But “printing money” raises outcries that can be difficult to overcome politically. An alternative that can have virtually the same effect is for nations to borrow money issued by their own publicly-owned banks. Public banks generate credit just as private banks do; but unlike private lenders, they return interest and profits to the economy. Their mandate is to serve the public, and that is where their profits go. Funding through their own government-issued currencies and publicly-owned banks has been successfully pursued by many countries historically, including Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, China, Russia, Korea and Japan. (For more on this, see The Public Bank Solution.)

Countries do need to be able to buy foreign products that they cannot acquire or produce domestically, and for that they need a form of currency or an international credit line that other nations will accept. But countries are increasingly breaking away from the oil- and weapons-backed US dollar as global reserve currency. To resolve the mutually-destructive currency wars will probably take a new Bretton Woods Accord. But that is another subject for a later article.

 

*Ellen Brown is an attorney, founder of the Public Banking Institute, and author of twelve books, including the best-selling Web of Debt. In The Public Bank Solution, her latest book, she explores successful public banking models historically and globally. Her 200+ blog articles are atEllenBrown.com.

The US and Global Wars: Empire or Vampire?

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Introduction: To the growing army of critics of US military intervention, who also reject the mendacious claims by American officials and their apologists of ‘world leadership’, Washington is engaged in ‘empire-building”.

But the notion that the US is building an empire, by engaging in wars to exploit and plunder countries’ markets, resources and labor, defies the realities of the past two decades. US wars, including invasions, bombings, occupations, sanctions, coups and clandestine operations have not resulted in the expansion of markets, greater control and exploitation of resources or the ability to exploit cheap labor. Instead US wars have destroyed enterprises, reduced access to raw materials, killed, wounded or displaced productive workers around the world, and limited access to lucrative investment sites and markets via sanctions.

In other words, US global military interventions and wars have done the exact opposite of what all previous empires have pursued: Washington has exploited (and depleted) the domestic economy to expand militarily abroad instead of enriching it.

Why and how the US global wars differ from those of previous empires requires us to examine (1) the forces driving overseas expansion; (2) the political conceptions accompanying the conquest, the displacement of incumbent rulers and the seizure of power and; (3) the reorganization of the conquered states and the accompanying economic and social structures to sustain long-term neo-colonial relations.

Empire Building: The Past

Europe built durable, profitable and extensive empires, which enriched the ‘mother country’, stimulated local industry, reduced unemployment and ‘trickled down’ wealth in the form of better wages to privileged sectors of the working class. Imperial military expeditions were preceded by the entry of major trade enterprises (British East India Company) and followed by large-scale manufacturing, banking and commercial firms. Military invasions and political takeovers were driven by competition with economic rivals in Europe, and later, by the US and Japan.

The goal of military interventions was to monopolize control over the most lucrative economic resources and markets in the colonized regions. Imperial repression was directed at creating a docile low wage labor force and buttressing subordinate local collaborators or client-rulers who facilitated the flow of profits, debt payments, taxes and export revenues back to the empire.

Imperial wars were the beginning, not the end, of ‘empire building’. What followed these wars of conquest was the incorporation of pre-existing elites into subordinate positions in the administration of the empire. The ‘sharing of revenues’, between the imperial economic enterprises and pre-existing elites, was a crucial part of ‘empire building’. The imperial powers sought to ‘instrumentalize’ existing religious, political, and economic elites’ and harness them to the new imperial-centered division of labor. Pre-existing economic activity, including local manufacturers and agricultural producers, which competed with imperial industrial exporters, were destroyed and replaced by malleable local traders and importers (compradors). In summary, the military dimensions of empire building were informed by economic interests in the mother country. The occupation was pre-eminently concerned with preserving local collaborative powers and, above all, restoring and expanding the intensive and extensive exploitation of local resources and labor, as well as the capture and saturation of local markets with goods from the imperial center.

“Empire-building” Today

The results of contemporary US military interventions and invasions stand in stark contrast with those of past imperial powers. The targets of military aggression are selected on the basis ofideological and political criteria. Military action does not follow the lead of ‘pioneer’ economic entrepreneurs – like the British East India Company. Military action is not accompanied by large-scale, long-term capitalist enterprises. Multi-national construction companies of the empire, which build great military bases are a drain on the imperial treasury.

Contemporary US intervention does not seek to secure and take over the existing military and civilian state apparatus; instead the invaders fragment the conquered state, decimate its cadres, professionals and experts at all levels, thus providing an entry for the most retrograde ethno-religious, regional, tribal and clan leaders to engage in intra-ethnic, sectarian wars against each other, in other words – chaos. Even the Nazis, in their expansion phase, chose to rule through local collaborator elites and maintained established administrative structures at all levels.

With US invasions, entire existing socio-economic structures are undermined, not ‘taken over’: all productive activity is subject to the military priorities of leaders bent on permanently crippling the conquered state and its advanced economic, administrative, educational, cultural and social sectors. While this is militarily successful in the short-run, the medium and long-term results are non-functioning states, not a sustained inflow of plunder and expanding market for an empire. Instead what we have is a chain of US military bases surrounded by a sea of hostile, largely unemployed populations and warring ethno-religious groups in decimated economies.

The US claims to ‘world leadership’ is based exclusively on failed-state empire building. Nevertheless, the dynamic for continuing to expand into new regions, to militarily and politically intervene and establish new client entities continues. And, most importantly, this expansionist dynamic further undermines domestic economic interests, which, theoretically and historically, form the basis for empire. We, therefore, have imperialism without empire, a vampire state preying on the vulnerable and devouring its own in the process.

Empire or Vampire: The Results of US Global Warfare

Empires, throughout history, have violently seized political power and exploited the riches and resources (both material and human) of the targeted regions. Over time, they would consolidate a ‘working relation’, insuring the ever-increasing flow of wealth into the mother country and the expanding presence of imperial enterprises in the colony. Contemporary US military interventions have had the opposite effect after every recent major military conquest and occupation.

Iraq: Vampires Pillage

Under Saddam Hussein, the Republic of Iraq was a major oil producer and profitable partner for major US oil companies, as well as a lucrative market for US exports. It was a stable, unified secular state. The first Gulf War in the 1990’s led to the first phase of its fragmentation with the de facto establishment of a Kurdish mini-state in the north under US protection. The US withdrew its military forces but imposed brutal economic sanctions limiting economic reconstruction from the devastation of the first Gulf War. The second US-led invasion and full-scale occupation in 2003 devastated the economy and dismantled the state dismissing tens of thousands of experienced civil servants, teachers and police. This led to utter social collapse and fomented ethno-religious warfare leading to the killing, wounding or displacement of millions of Iraqis. The result of GW Bush’s conquest of Baghdad was a ‘failed state’. US oil and energy companies lost billions of dollars in trade and investment and the US economy was pushed into recession.

Afghanistan: Endless Wars, Endless Losses

The US war against Afghanistan began with the arming, financing and political support of Islamist jihadi-fundamentalists in 1979. They succeeded in destroying and dismantling a secular, national government. With the decision to invade Afghanistan in October 2001 the US became an occupier in Southwest Asia. For the next thirteen years, the US-puppet regime of Hamad Karzai and the ‘NATO coalition’ occupation forces proved incapable of defeating the Taliban guerrilla army. Billions of dollars were spent devastating the economy and impoverishing the vast majority of Afghans. Only the opium trade flourished. The effort to create an army loyal to the puppet regime failed. The forced retreat of US armed forces beginning in 2014 signals the bitter demise of US ‘empire building’ in Southwest Asia.

Libya: From Lucrative Trading Partner to Failed State

Libya, under President Gadhafi, was evolving into a major US and European trading partner and influential power in Africa. The regime signed large-scale, long-term contracts with major international oil companies which were backed by a stable secular government. The relationship with the US and EU was profitable. The US opted to impose a ‘regime change’ through massive US-EU missile and bombing strikes and the arming of a motley collection of Islamist terrorists, ex-pat neo-liberals and tribal militias. While these attacks succeeded in killing President Gadhafi and most of his family (including many of his grandchildren) and dismantling the secular Libyan government and administrative infrastructure, the country was ripped apart by tribal war-lord conflicts, political disintegration and the utter destruction of the economy. Oil investors fled. Over one million Libyans and immigrant workers were displaced. The US and EU ‘partners-in-regime-change’ have even fled their own embassies in Tripoli – while the Libyan ‘parliament’ operates off-shore from a casino boat. None of this devastation would have been possible under President Gadhafi. The US vampire bled its new prize, Libya, but certainly couldnot incorporate it into a profitable ‘empire’. Not only were its oil resources denied to the empire, but even oil exports disappeared. Not even an imperial military base has been secured in North Africa!

Syria: Wars on Behalf of Terrorists not Empire

Washington and its EU allies backed an armed uprising in Syria hoping to install a puppet regime and bring Damascus into their “empire”. The mercenary assaults have caused the deaths of nearly 200,000 Syrians, the displacement of over 30% of the population and the seizure of the Syrian oil fields by the Sunni extremist army, ISIS. ISIS has decimated the pro-US mercenary army, recruiting and arming thousands of terrorists from around the world It invaded neighboring Iraq conquering the northern third of that country. This was the ultimate result of the deliberate US dismantling of the Iraqi state in 2003.

The US strategy, once again, is to arm Islamist extremists to overthrow the secular Bashar Assad regime in Damascus and then to discard them for a more pliable client. The strategy ‘boomeranged’ on Washington. ISIS devastated the ineffective Iraqi armed forces of the Maliki regime in Baghdad and America’s much over-rated Peshmerga proxy ‘fighters’ in Iraqi ‘Kurdistan’. Washington’s mercenary war in Syria didn’t expand the ‘empire’; indeed it undermined existing imperial outposts.

The Ukrainian Power Grab, Russian Sanctions and Empire Building

In the aftermath of the collapse of the USSR, the US and EU incorporated the Baltic, Eastern European and Balkan ex-communist countries into their orbit. This clearly violated major agreements with Russia, by incorporating most of the neo-liberal regimes into NATO and bringing NATO forces to the very border of Russia. During the corrupt regime of Boris Yeltsin, the ‘West’ absolutely looted the Russian economy in co-operation with local gangster – oligarchs, who took up EU or Israeli citizenship to recycle their pillaged wealth. The demise of the vassal Yeltsin regime and the ascent and recovery of Russia under Vladimir Putin led the US and EU to formulate a strategy to deepen and extend its ‘empire’ by seizing power in the Caucuses and the Ukraine. A power and land grab by the puppet regime in Georgia attacking Russian forces in Ossetia in 2012 was decisively beaten back. This was a mere dress rehearsal for the coup in Kiev. In late 2013-early 2014, the US financed a violent rightwing putsch ousting the elected government and imposing a hand-picked pro-NATO client to assume power in Kiev.

The new pro-US regime moved quickly to purge all independent, democratic, federalist, bilingual and anti-NATO voices especially among the bi-lingual citizens concentrated in the South-Eastern Ukraine. The coup and the subsequent purge provoked a major armed uprising in the southeast, which successfully resisted the invading NATO-backed neo-fascist armed forces and private armies of the oligarchs. The failure of the Kiev regime to subdue the resistence fighters of the Donbass region resulted in a multi-pronged US-EU intervention designed to isolate, weaken and undermine the resistance. First and foremost they attempted to pressure Russia to close its borders on the eastern front where hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian civilians eventually fled the bombardment. Secondly, the US and EU applied economic sanctions on Russia to abandon its political support for the southeast region’s democratic and federalist demands. Thirdly, it sought to use the Ukraine conflict as a pretext for a major military build-up on Russia’s borders, expanding NATO missile sites and organizing an elite rapid interventionist military force capable of bolstering a faltering puppet regime or backing a future NATO sponsored putsch against any adversary.

The Kiev regime is economically bankrupt. Its war against its own civilians in the southeast has devastated Ukraine’s economy. Hundreds of thousands of skilled professionals, workers and their families have fled to Russia. Kiev’s embrace of the EU has resulted in the breakdown of vital gas and oil agreements with Russia, undermining the Ukraine’s principle source of energy and heating with winter only months away. Kiev cannot pay its debts and faces default. The rivalries between neo-fascists and neo-liberals in Kiev will further erode the regime. In sum, the US-EU power grab in the Ukraine has not led to the effective ‘expansion of empire’; rather it has ushered in the total destruction of an emerging economy and precipitated a sharp reversal of financial, trade and investment relations with Russia and Ukraine. The economic sanctions against Russia exacerbate the EU current economic crisis. The belligerent posture of military confrontation toward Russia will result in an increase in military spending among the EU states and further divert scarce economic resources form job creation and social programs. The loss by significant sectors of the EU of agricultural export markets, as well as the loss of several billion-dollar military-industrial contracts with Russia, certainly weakens, rather than expands, the ‘empire’ as an economic force

Iran: 100 Billion Dollar Punitive Sanctions Don’t Build Empires

The US-EU sanctions on Iran carry a very high political, economic and political price tag. They do not strengthen empire, if we understand ‘empire’ to mean the expansion of multi-national corporations, and increasing access to oil and gas resources to ensure stable, cheap energy for strategic economic sectors within the imperial center.

The economic war on Iran has been at the behest of US allies, including the Gulf Monarchies and especially Israel. These are dubious ‘allies’ for US ‘empire’ . . . widely reviled potentates and a racist regime which manage to exact tribute from the imperial center!

In Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere, Iran has demonstrated its willingness to co-operate in power sharing agreements with US global interest. However, Iran is a regional power, which will not submit to becoming a vassal state of the US. The sanctions policy has not provoked an uprising among the Iranian masses nor has it led to regime change. Sanctions have not weakened Iran to the extent of making it an easy military target. While sanctions have weakened Iran’s economy, they has also worked against any kind of long-range empire building strategy, because Iran has strengthened its economic and diplomatic ties with the US’ rivals, Russia and China.

Conclusion

As this brief survey indicates, US-EU wars have not been instruments of empire-building in the conventional or historical sense. At most they have destroyed some adversaries of empire. But these have been pyrhic victories. Along with the overthrow of a target regime, the systematic break-up of the state has unleashed powerful chaotic forces, which have doomed any possibility of creating stable neo-colonial regimes capable of controlling their societies and securing opportunities for imperialist enrichment via economic exploitation.

At most the US overseas wars have secured military outposts, foreign islands in seas of desperate and hostile populations. Imperial wars have provoked continuous underground resistance movements, ethnic civil wars and violent terrorist organizations which threaten ‘blowback’ on the imperial center.

The US and EU’s easy annexations of the ex-communist countries, usually via the stage-managed ballot-box or ‘color revolutions’, led to the take-over of great national wealth and skilled labor. However, Euro-American empires bloody campaigns to invade and conquer the Middle East, South Asia, North Africa and the Caucuses have created nightmarish ‘failed states’ – continuously draining imperial coffers and leading to a state of permanent occupation and warfare.

The bloodless takeover of the Eastern European satellites with their accommodating, corrupt elites has ended. The 21st century reliance on militarist strategies contrasts sharply with the successful multi-pronged colonial expansions of the 19th – 20th century, where economic penetration and large scale economic development accompanied military intervention and political change. Today’s imperial wars cause economic decay and misery within the domestic economy, as well as perpetual wars abroad, an unsustainable drain.

The current US/EU military expansion into Ukraine, the encirclement of Russia, NATO missiles aimed at the very heart of a major nuclear power and the economic sanctions may lead to a global nuclear war, which may indeed put an end to militarist empire-building… and the rest of humanity.

Chris Hedges – Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle

Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle, by Pulitzer Prize winning author Chris Hedges, argues that we are heading for economic, environmental, political, and moral collapse, as a once proud nation becomes an empire. According to Hedges, corporations are using mass entertainment to sell us the illusion of meaning, while we are kept apathetic about the decline of our culture, the erosion of education, and the systematic loss of our liberties.

Chapter by chapter

In Chapter 1, “The Illusion of Literacy,” beginning with the popular appeal of professional wrestling and reality TV, the author traces how media creates illusions of life, or pseudo-events, which overlay reality in the minds of those who follow them. These pseudo-events become more important than our real-world problems. “The success of professional wrestling, like most of the entertainment that envelops our culture, lies not in fooling us that these stories are real. Rather, it succeeds because we ask to be fooled. We happily pay for the chance to suspend reality.”

Moving through a detailed panorama of media, the cult of celebrity, and shows like American Idol, The Swan, Big Brother, and Survivor, Hedges uncovers the messages behind these shows. “They leave us chasing vapors. They urge us toward a life of narcissistic self-absorption. They tell us that existence is to be centered on the practices and desires of the self rather than the common good.”

This assaults literacy, not just our ability to read, but also our capacity to think deeply about issues.

A culture dominated by images and slogans seduces those that are functionally literate but who make the choice not to read…Propaganda has become a substitute for ideas and ideals. Knowledge is confused with how we are made to feel. Commercial brands are mistaken for expressions of individuality.

This is most important in the area of politics.

Those captive to images cast ballots based on how candidates make them feel. They vote for a slogan, a smile, perceived sincerity, and attractiveness, along with the carefully crafted personal history of the candidate…Truth is irrelevant. Those who succeed in politics, as in most of the culture, are those create the most convincing fantasies.

In chapter 2, “The Illusion of Love,” Hedges addresses the issue of the growing use of pornography in the last 40 years. He shows the horrors of the porn industry, its abuse of women and the industrialization of rape. He allows porn actors to speak for themselves, focusing on those who share their victimization by soulless companies whose only concern is profit; in porn they are commodities, not people. Hedges pulls no punches in letting them tell their stories. The testimonies here are stark and sexually detailed, certainly not for the faint-hearted. In other interviews with people who support the industry you can hear the hollowness of their justifications of abuse and torture.

He has a section of interviews with Shelly Lubben and some of her team at a porn convention. Shelly is an ex-porn star and is now a Christian crusader against the industry. Her mission is to rescue women from porn and show them the gospel of Jesus Christ. The author never openly commends her work against the industry, though he seems to share her viewpoint. Hedges does not write from a Christian perspective, and given his other railing against Christians (especially the “Christian Right”) this is a compliment.

There are few conclusions or recommendations for how to deal with this scourge on the mental landscape of our citizens. Instead, the author leaves us to draw our own from the descriptions of how pornography victimizes both users and producers. He rightly sees pornography as disassociated from relationships, intimacy, and real sex, and more about power and violence. Hedges uses our cultures fascination with porn, and the way that it has become mainstreamed into other media, to show how we have replaced real love with an illusion. Porn is a reflection of the violence that we have come to accept as entertainment, as figured in the Abu Graib abuses.

Chapter 3, “The Illusion of Wisdom,” is about higher education, specifically the schools of the elite, like Yale, Harvard, Stanford, and Cambridge—the very schools where most of those in political and corporate power receive their education. Admission to these schools, like a country club membership, is only available to the rich and powerful, who make colossal donations to gain admittance for their children. Diversity is cultural and ethnic, but there is no diversity of class. Intelligence and analytical skills are the only traits prized in these cloisters of privilege, and those students and faculty who question the status quo are shunned. Hedges contrasts this to an earlier time when enrollment was open, and where students questioned what they were hearing, rather than simply regurgitating facts.

He notes,

These elites are not capable of asking the broad, universal questions, the staples of an education in the humanities, which challenge the deepest assumptions of a culture and examine the harsh realities of political and economic power…Instead the elite are taught skills which prepare them for careers in business and politics. If business and political institutions are going the wrong way, these skills will not enable them to see what is wrong, or show any way to correct them…The unstated ethic of these elite institutions is to make as much money as you can to sustain the elitist system…By the time they graduate, they are superbly conditioned for the drudgery of moving large sums of money around electronically or negotiating huge corporate contracts.

The consequence of this shift in education over the last 100 years is that the people making the biggest decisions about what kind of country and economy the rest of us will inherit are those unprepared to question authority and the status quo, and unlikely to set aside the interests of the rich and powerful to build a better world for all Americans. The moral and ethical dimensions of business and public policy will not just be ignored, but intellectually unavailable to them.

Chapter 4, “The Illusion of Happiness,” is about positive psychology and social engineering. Positive psychology believes that happiness can be engineered. “By thinking about things, by visualizing them, by wanting them, we can make them happen.” As preposterous as this con artistry seems, this is a prevailing philosophy being sold to major corporations. “The corporations tell us who we are and what we can become…If we are not happy there is something wrong with us.”

This ties in with the picture that Hedges is painting of our culture of illusion.

Once we adopt a positive mind, positive things will always happen. This belief, like all the other illusions peddled in the culture, encourages people to flee from reality when reality is frightening or depressing… This flight into self-delusion is no more helpful in solving real problems than alchemy. But it is very effective in keeping people from questioning the structure around them that are responsible for their misery. Positive Psychology gives an academic patina to fantasy.

These positive psychologists sell their services to corporations, who then build a culture where productivity at work, based on an illusion of happiness, not family or church, becomes the highest ethical goal for an individual. As this fails to produce real fulfillment and leads to isolation, the person who rebels against his keepers is passed over for promotion, or “downsized.” The person who is cowed into submission flees into the fantasy of spectacle on television or pornography to validate a life that should have been lived for a higher calling than next year’s annual report. Either way this accomplishes the corporation’s goal of profit, either by producing more brake pads, or downsizing those who don’t want to play the game.

Positive psychology, like celebrity culture, the relentless drive to consume, and the diversionary appeals of mass entertainment, feeds off the unhappiness that comes from isolation and the loss of community. The corporate teaching that we can find happiness through conformity to corporate culture is a cruel trick, for it is corporate culture that stokes and feeds the great malaise and disconnect of the culture of illusion.

The final chapter, “The Illusion of America,” sums up the rest of the book with the opening line, “I used to live in a country called America.” Hedges tells us that, though we use the same language of freedom, rights, liberty, and justice for all, we are left with only the illusion of these things in a country that cruelly treats those who are poor, laid off, and whose homes have been foreclosed, while those who have engineered their demise on Wall Street take home 10 million dollar bonuses. Ironically, the government we elected to promote liberty and to protect our people never steps in to interrupt this greed. There are slogans of hope and change, but the real hope is for the rich to get richer, and the change is just another coat of paint on the same collapsing edifice that was once a great and proud nation.

I challenge you to read that chapter for yourself. It’s not fun. Whether or not all that Chris Hedges says is true, there is certainly the ring of authenticity to someone born in the early 50s who grew up looking forward to a brighter future and a better America. Perhaps the most chilling statement is, “At no period in American history has our democracy been in such peril or the possibility of totalitarianism as real.” In the 70s I wondered, as I read Revelation 13, how the prediction of an evil world ruler could ever be bought and sold in America. Francis Schaeffer’s words were prophetic: “History indicates that that at a certain point of economic breakdown people cease being concerned with individual liberties and are ready to accept regimentation. The danger is obviously greater when [the] two main values so many people have are personal peace and affluence.”

Why don’t International Justice call for the arrests of the ‘tops’?

Uploaded on Athenianvoice 29-08-2014

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Svenska

”Peace will not come to Athens (Mankind) until those who are not injured becomes as outraged as those who are injured”

“The nation that will insist on drawing a broad line of demarcation between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards.”

Thucydides

The two quotations above gives two very crucial, fundamental warnings, that are absolutely essential to take into account when trying to uphold a true Democracy. They are extracted from speeches on the Peloponnesian Wars by the fifth century BC Athenian, historian, philosopher and general, Thucydides.

The first points at the fatal danger of neglecting people who suffer under oppression and tyranny, and the second points out the crucial importance of a police and an army formed by the citizens themselves for the defense of democracy, the citizens and the good of all (instead of a professional police and army who will always be inclined to serve the elite).

Exactly the neglect of human suffering and the professional police forces and armies (that are directed by private interests) are currently provoking a toxic socio-political climate, in which democracy is receiving blow after blow from those who really benefit by its destruction. Justice is sadly to a dangerously high degree in the hands of the same. The Hydra of the biggest banking families and their subservient beneficiaries have come to own most major businesses over the two centuries during which they have secretly and increasingly organised themselves as controllers of governments worldwide and as arbiters of war and peace.

Unless we understand this we will be unable to understand the real reasons for the two world wars and the impending third world war, a war that is almost certain to begin as a consequence of the US attempt to seize and control Central Asia. The only way out is for the US to back off – something the people of the US and the world want, but the elite does not.

International Justice must be ‘forced’, by the western, united public opinion, to take action against the biggest banking families and their ‘bullies’. The west’s citizens need to produce precise, adequate and comprehensive lawsuits against them in both National and International Court’s. It is mainly the western pseudo-democratic governments that has laid International Justice aside for too long and has failed to actually ever implement real Democracy, due to their obligations to these banking families and their subservient beneficiaries. It is these highly treasonous obligations that has made most citizens in the world very angry and some very vindictive, because these obligations has been proven to mean enforced, neo-colonial treaties and agreements, against the good of their own people and countries.

Standing outside Bilderberg-meetings, parliaments, WTO- and G7-summits shouting slogans, informing them that we know who they are and what they are up to, doesn’t even bring sweat to their foreheads anymore. Why would it? They have the security police, the riot police, the national guard, the paramilitary security companies, the armies (private, national and international), mercenary armies and the loosely or fully allied criminal gangs and militias. The elected ‘politicians’, under the advice of their vulture advisers, also make sure to very quickly and basically unnoticed by the general public, vote through the new legislations that are defending the exaggerated use of repressive forces and excessive violence. They need to ensure that the violence they feel that they have to use against their own citizens becomes, ‘legally valid measures’.  For the public’s safety and to keep order in the society, they claim, while the country’s Constitution Committee and the Supreme Court ‘has gone fishing’! This, despite the fact that it is the public their “robocops” beat, kick, drag, spray with tear gas and water cannons, shoot rubber bullets on, mass arrest, torture and terrorize – and despite the fact that it is the society itself that has been attacked by its bankers and businessmen with their blessing and permission. This is done through undemocratically and unconstitutionally enforced legislations, sure,.. but sadly enough ‘legally valid’ in the eyes of Justice, until the peoples unite and in organised form invalidates these legislations.

As a matter of fact, the most effective form of organisation against Mammon’s tyranny is called DEMOCRACY, but not in its current crippled, blindfolded, mute, finance-dictated, extorted form. Not in its “vote-every-4-years-and-pay-your-taxes-and-leave-the-rest-to-us-because-we-know-better” form. This form is what brought us to this fragile position in the first place. We have to look for solutions in the very foundations of true Democracy, to understand how we can build the ‘defense lines’ against, plutocracy and tyranny with it. Its original form,.. that ancient pre-Roman, Athenian form, is still the only true foundation for a democratic ‘ordering and organisation of the affairs and the concerns of a state and a human society’. It is the only known form that can really provide collective freedom, individual and social self-determination and a consistent self-defense to a whole people or a nation, thus the only one that can really be called Democracy. THAT FORM IS WHAT TODAY’S PREDATORY, FINANCIAL ELITE DREAD MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE IN THIS WORLD. They have encountered it a few times in history, and they didn’t like it at all.

It took them over a century and a lot of conspiracies, secrecy, manipulation and infiltration to really recover since the French slapped them in the face with it. And take into account that, that slap as well as the one the American revolution gave their colonizers, was just cuddles in comparison to what a true and mature Democracy really can do, to these self-proclaimed ‘kings’ and ‘emperors’ of mankind. The French and the Americans as well as most others, who has raised a spirit of freedom against tyranny, has not sufficiently implemented the original and most important principles of Democracy, the ones Thucydides warned about. They managed to leave amazingly democratic constitutions to mankind, but failed to also leave the necessary practical safety locks in order to adequately defend its constitutions and its basic democratic principles. The safety locks that among others, Solon, Thucydides and Pericles, in ancient Athens already had identified as absolutely crucial for a true Democracy to be able to protect itself from, and survive, conspiracies of plutocratic, kleptocratic and oligarchic character, in other words tyranny!

In France in the 18th century, the majority of the simple people was illiterate and therefore unaware of the existence of these ancient but still fundamental principles, so they couldn’t demand them from the revolution. This fact enticed even Robespierre himself to become a self proclaimed ‘headmaster’ of the French people and a power-drunk tyrant and his megalomania finally led to the loss of his head,.. literally. In America the revolution had the same problem, plus the fact that those who fought in the War of Independence came from many different backgrounds, culturally and ethnically, so they could be stilled and satisfied with just a few crumbs compared to what a truly informed and united people can achieve.

Today we are in a different situation altogether because today in the west, nearly nobody is illiterate (at least officially), so today we really can demand that all the fundamental principles of democracy shall be restored and protected in a way only the pre-Roman, Greek Democracy, has ever done. The Roman post-Greek form of Democracy on the other hand laid – through a rigid bureaucracy and far too many highly unnecessary and complex laws – the fundamentals for what still pass as Democracy in the world today. Rome, the vulgar, imperialist copycat of the Hellenic culture actually paved the way for plutocratic and kleptocratic conspiracies through the many ‘loop holes’ that Roman law had left open, without any regard of the fundamental Athenian principles and the original central citizens ethos that must be the basics of the Law in a Democracy.

Our worst enemy today, that keep us from uniting, is not illiteracy like in the end of the 18th century, it is the disinformation and the state sanctioned, deceptive propaganda.

To unite doesn’t at all mean that we have to agree on everything, or even that we have to like eachothers political views. It just mean that we have to identify and focus on the real and highly dangerous common threats to all of us and to our house (our individual and social freedom, our country, our natural resources and our constitutions). It means to use reason and logic before passion, to with united forces first eliminate that threat.  Because without our house being truly ours, it’s pretty pointless to argue about how to share it among ourselves, which house rules should be applied, or how we best use its resources.

If we await a simultaneous global uprising, we are not using reason and logic, but just silly and childish hope and that will just allow the Ukraine-effect and the Syria-effect to spread globally. To just hope for something in the current situation, really means that one already has given up and is just expecting help to come from somewhere else or someone else. The “help” that comes from “somewhere else” and from “someone else” is today gladly provided by the banking-families mercenary armies and their death-squads and militias, which are led by NATO. With the Ukraine-effect and the Syria-effect, I mean extremists and bloodthirsty, fanatic butchers who are unleashed by exactly these banking-families, to act as “revolutionaries defending their land”, in order to prevent the actual majority of the country’s population to unite and demand real Democracy. This is what awaits all of us unless all pull up their pants, roll up their sleeves and really unite in an adequate way against the tyrants. It is proof of great stupidity or great cowardice, or both, to expect tyrants to save mankind from tyrants. Especially when the only thing one have the balls to do as an alleged political reaction today, is to still participate in their ludicrous left-right charade. Today that is like choosing if one wants to be pushed off the cliff edge with the banking-families right hand or left hand.

“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”

Dr Martin Luther King Jr

So, the answer to the question in the title of this article is simply: Because, the still free people of the world, don’t unite, organise and demand it strongly enough!

Consequently, the most crucial act of resistance today is the united, determined and well-organised act that will force International Justice to react strongly against the global Hydra of Mammon’s looters, occupiers and war-lords,.. and finally hold them to account for their repeated and extremely serious crimes against humanity.

 

The puppeteers to prison!

The banking-families Hydra is flying high, far too high and its heads are playing gods using Icaros wings, and even now when these wings are scorched and they are constantly losing power (fewer and fewer believe in their fairy tales), they refuse to realize that the wings are only from wax and removable, and that they in fact can not actually fly without them. The Hydra has during long time learned to act as if it is beyond indictment and above the law but it forgets that the sun melts wax.

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Blinded by arrogance and pride, they can’t see their fall coming more than Icaros could, and that is the ultimate proof of not only their blindness but also their simplistic minds. Mankind need to, in its social character and its common approach to life, collectively find Daedalus* (Icaros fathers) balance between ‘flying too high and too low’. Balance between greed and need so to say. The balance can not be restored on the collective level, when the disturbances has become norms, if humanity and society itself doesn’t treat its imbalances with relevance and unity. Balance comes with truth, self-observation, knowledge of microcosmos and macrocosmos and the genuine will to respect the natural principles that upholds life. The beginning of such treatment of the imbalance is to accurately and effectively deal with the worst disturbances and its causes. It means to apply strict legal sanctions and to establish independent and constitutionally protected practical, legal safeguards that protects the fundamental democratic principles and the citizens from power abuse.

Humanity must, except demanding very high prison sentences also demand the annexation of all of their fortunes, in order to compensate at least parts of the unmeasurable damages they have caused mankind, as well as the deprivation of all their public functions, social-economic influence and civil rights (exactly as was done in the Athenian dawn of Democracy). They and all their alike, their ‘servants’, their ‘lapdogs’ and ‘hangarounds’ cannot be allowed anymore to have any influence on either the public or the private influential sectors. Humanity and its societies must once and for all mark and set an example by showing that one risk losing everything, just everything, except food, water and shelter, if one pleases to expose whole societies and humanity to a substantial and fatal danger. These penalties are fully in line with the original legal and practical aspects of democracy.

We must united, incessantly and very loudly and officially ask our legal authorities: Why aren’t the top banking families ‘heads of families’, the directors, the chairmen and boards, the executives, the ministers, the agents and the commanders of their corporations, organizations, and institutions, being brought to justice? It stands very clear today, through whole ‘libraries of evidence’, who in fact are putting the whole world and mankind in a very critical position once again.

In the collective conscience of mankind they are seriously accused:

  • to have achieved their power and created their wealth through frauds, theft, the manipulation of public wealth, elected officials, whole societies and through crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide.
  • to intentionally and in a predetermined manner  have created very serious problems, waited for the carefully evoked reactions  and then presented their own desired solutions.
  • to have manipulated markets, governments, courts, nations, societies, police forces, armies and continents through covert military and paramilitary operations, propaganda, extortion, murder, threats and terror.
  • to through fraud, lies and deceit deliberately have caused economic crisis, geo-political crisis, wars, civil wars, revolutions, dictatorships and to always have financed both sides in big conflicts so that they wouldn’t end before the desired geo-strategic, political and socioeconomic goals has been achieved.

Over 100 million people died just in the 20th century in wars and armed conflicts, caused, provoked and triggered by them and their governments, corporations, organizations and institutions.

Something essential to keep in mind here is that the Law in a Democracy (the Greek form) is meant to express the common morality and ethos of the people, and not to defend the selfish desires and the crimes of a financial, political or clerical elite (the Roman form). We must therefore loudly ask: When is International Justice going to react in accordance with these, by mankind, widely supported accusations?

Of course this will not happen without a very strong pressure from the peoples. The absolute first thing the western citizens and the democratic forces need to organise around now, is the official demand to their national Supreme Courts, Constitutional Committees and the International Criminal Court, to hold the top criminals from these banking families and their organizations to account for high-treason, crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide. What credibility does otherwise people’s democratic struggles really have? If the struggling people doesn’t show also in practice, that they consider these men and women as highly dangerous to human societies and to humanity, why should Justice bother, some might argue?

Apparently, the currently very tired and rather deaf International Justice and its judges and prosecutors must be reminded today what the actual purpose with it was in the first place. It must be ‘told to’ do what it was formed to do, and to not succumb to extortion and threats or expected class obligations. If they can’t resist or avoid such submission, they shouldn’t hold their positions for a minute more, they should step down and leave their places to more courageous and irrepressible “guardians of the law”. Humanity must very strongly demand this now from International Justice by, except the massive citizens law suits, also relocate the large protests outside their headquarters and courts instead of outside parliaments (that really don’t have any particular power today).

International Justice was established primarily to protect peoples, nations and humanity from oppression and tyranny by defending the basic human and civil rights and the peoples rights to resist tyranny and to defend national and international democracy and freedom. Well, it doesn’t! If it did, we would have seen it and felt it over the last four years when mankind in fact has shown more than ever before through massive protests against injustice, dictatorial political decisions and neo-colonial economic solutions, that it want true justice. It would have responded and reacted to the very justified massive reactions and protests against neo-liberal privatizations and the demolition of human and civil rights. Actually they did in fact, but I don’t mean a respond which is first of all police violence and repressive actions and policies against the victims, but a respond with the existing legal tools against the perpetrators.

To defend mankind now means to immediately and through existing International Law and adequate practical mechanisms (their arrests and prosecutions), in a clear and firm way show these banking families and their allies that peoples, nations, cultures cannot be extorted, threatened and terrorized by a few banking families without them being severely and relevantly punished for it. Does these judges and prosecutors exist at all, in any other form than as an endangered species, I wonder, and are we just expecting courage, righteousness and decency from where only cowardice, unrighteousness and indecency exists?

 

Kosmas Loumakis

Karlshamn 21-08-2014

 

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*Daedalos was a craftsman, considered the inventor of carpentry, who built the labyrinth for Minos, king of Crete. Minos imprisoned him and his son Icaros, but they escaped using wings that Daedalos made and fastened with wax. Icaros, however, flew too near the sun and was killed.

This ‘myth-historic’ (mix of mythology and history) story explain Man’s fall into the abyss of egoism and narcissism and Man’s ability to surmount these self-destructive characteristics through balance and moderation.

The Emperor’s Rage: Let Chaos Envelop the World!

petras

Introduction: Chaos reigns and spreads as enraged leaders in the US, Europe and their clients and allies pursue genocidal wars. Mercenary wars in Syria; Israel’s terror bombing on Gaza; proxy wars in the Ukraine, Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Somalia.

Tens of millions of refugees flee scenes of total destruction. Nothing is sacred. There are no sanctuaries. homes, schools, hospitals and entire families are targeted for destruction.

Chaos by Design

At the center of chaos, the wild-eyed President Obama strikes blindly, oblivious of the consequences, willing to risk a financial debacle or a nuclear war. He enforces sanctions against Iran; imposes sanctions on Russia; sets up missile bases five launch minutes from Moscow; sends killer drones against Pakistan, Yemen and Afghanistan; arms mercenaries in Syria; trains and equips Kurds in Iraq and pays for Israel’s savagery against Gaza.

Nothing works.

The Chaos President is blind to the fact that starving one’s adversaries does not secure submission: it unites them to resist. Regime change, imposing proxies by force and subterfuge, can destroy the social fabric of complex societies: Million of peasants and workers become uprooted refugees. Popular social movements are replaced by organized criminal gangs and bandit armies.

Central America, the product of decades of US direct and proxy military interventions, which prevented the most basic structural changes, has become a chaotic, unlivable inferno for millions. Tens of thousands of children flee from their ‘free market’- induced mass poverty and militarized state and gangster violence. Children refugees at the US border are arrested in mass, and imprisoned in makeshift detention camps, subject to psychological, physical and sexual abuse by officials and guards on the inside. On the outside, these pitiful children are exposed to the racist hatred of a frightened US public unaware of the dangers these children are escaping and the US government’s role in creating these hells.

The US-backed Kiev aviation authorities re-directed international passenger airlines to fly over war zones bristling with anti-aircraft missiles while Kiev’s jets bombed the rebellious cities and towns. One flight was shot down and nearly 300 civilians perished. Immediately an explosion of accusations from Kiev blaming Russian President Putin flooded Western media with no real facts to explain the tragedy/crime. War-crazy President Obama and the slavering prime ministers of the EU ejaculated ultimatums, threatening to convert Russia into a pariah state. ‘Sanctions, sanctions, everywhere . . . but first… France must complete its $1.5 billion sale to the Russian navy.’ And the City of London exempts the Russian oligarchs from the ‘sanctions’, embedded as they are in London’s money-laundering, parasitical FIRE (Fire, Insurance and Real Estate) economy. The Cold War has returned and has taken an ugly turn… with exceptions…for business.

Confrontation among nuclear powers is imminent: And the maniacal Baltic States and Poland bray the loudest for war with Russia, oblivious to their positions on the front lines of incineration…

Each day Israel’s war machine chews up more bodies of Gaza’s children while spitting out more lies. Cheering Israeli Jews perch on their fortified hills to celebrate each missile strike on the apartments and schools in the densely populated Shejaiya neighborhood of besieged Gaza. A group of orthodox and secular entrepreneurs in Brooklyn have organized group tours to visit the Holy Sites by day and enjoy the Gaza pyrotechnics by night . . . night goggles to view the fleeing mothers and burning children are available at a small extra charge…

Again the US Senate votes unanimously in support of Israel’s latest campaign of mass murder – no crime is depraved enough to ruffle the scruples of America’s leaders. They hew close to a script from the 52 Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organizations. Together they embrace a Beast from the Apocalypse gnawing on the flesh and bones of Palestine.

But, Sacre Bleu! France’s Zionists have prevailed on the ‘President-Socialiste’ Hollande. Paris bans all anti-Israel demonstrations despite the clear reports of genocide. Demonstrators supporting the Gazan resistance are gassed and assaulted by special riot police – ‘Socialist’ Hollande serves the demands of powerful Zionist organizations while trashing his country’s republican traditions and its sacred ‘Rights of Man’.

The young protestors of Paris fought back with barricades and paving stones in the finest traditions of the Paris Commune waving the flags of a free Palestine. Not a single ‘red banner’ was in sight: The French ‘left’ were under their beds or off on vacation.

There are ominous signs away from the killing fields. The stock market is rising while the economy stagnates. Wild speculators have returned in their splendor widening the gap between the fictitious and real economy before the ‘deluge’, the chaos of another inevitable crash.

In industrial America’s once great Detroit, clean water is shut-off to tens of thousands of poor citizens unable to pay for basic service. In the midst of summer, urban families are left to defecate in hallways, alleyways and empty lots. Without water the toilets are clogged, children are not washed. Roscoe, the master plumber, says the job is way beyond him.

According to our famed economists, the economy of Detroit is ‘recovering . . . profits are up, it’s only the people who are suffering’. Productivity has doubled, speculators are satisfied; Pensions are slashed and wages are down; but the Detroit Tigers are in first place.

Public hospitals everywhere are being closed. In the Bronx and Brooklyn, emergency rooms are overwhelmed. Chaos! Interns work 36 hour shifts . . . and the sick and injured take their chances with a sleep-deprived medic. Meanwhile, in Manhattan, private clinics and ‘boutique’ practices for the elite proliferate.

Scandinavians have embraced the putschist power grab in Kiev. The Swedish Foreign Minister Bildt bellows for a new Cold War with Russia. The Danish emissary and NATO leader, Rasmussen, salivates obscenely at the prospect of bombing and destroying Syria in a replay of NATO’s ‘victory’ over Libya.

The German leaders endorse the ongoing Israeli genocide against Gaza; they are comfortably protected from any moral conscience by their nostalgic blanket of ‘guilt’ over Nazi crimes 70 years ago.

Saudi-funded Jihadi terrorists in Iraq showed their “infinite mercy” by… merely driving thousands of Christians from ancient Mosul. Nearly 2,000 years of a continuous Christian presence was long enough! At least most escaped with their heads still attached.

Chaos Everywhere

Over one hundred thousand agents of the US National Security Agency are paid to spy on two million Muslim citizens and residents in the USA. But for all the tens of billions of dollars spent and tens of millions of conversations recorded, Islamic charities are prosecuted and philanthropic individuals are framed in ‘sting operations’.

Where the bombs fall no one knows, but people flee. Millions are fleeing the chaos.

But there is no place to go! The French invade half a dozen African countries but the refugees are denied refuge in France. Thousands die in the desert or drown crossing the Med. Those who do make it, are branded criminals or relegated to ghettos and camps.

Chaos reigns in Africa, the Middle East, Central America and Detroit. The entire US frontier with Mexico has become a militarized detention center, a multi-national prison camp. The border is unrecognizable to our generation.

Chaos reigns in the markets. Chaos masquerades as trade sanctions: Iran yesterday, Russia today and China tomorrow. Washington, Watch out! Your adversaries are finding common ground, trading, forging agreements, building defenses; their ties are growing stronger.

Chaos reigns in Israel. War-obsessed Israelis discover that the Chosen People of God can also bleed and die, lose limbs and eyes in the alleyways of Gaza where poorly armed boys and men stand their ground. When the cheers turn to jeers, will they re-elect Bibi, their current kosher butcher? The overseas brethren, the fundraisers, the lobbyists and the armchair verbal assassins will automatically embrace some new face, without questions, regrets or (god forbid!) self-criticism –if it’s ‘good for Israel and the Jews’ it’s got to be right!

Chaos reigns in New York. Judicial rulings favor the pirates and their vulture funds demanding one-thousand percent returns on old Argentine bonds. If Argentina rejects this financial blackmail and defaults, shock waves will ripple throughout global financial markets. Creditors will tremble in uncertainty: Fears will grow over a new financial crash. Will they squeeze out another trillion-dollar bailout?

But where’s the money? Printing presses are working day and night. There are only a few life boats . . . enough for the bankers and Wall Street, the other ninety-nine percent will have to swim or feed the sharks.

The corrupted financial press now advises warlords on which country to bomb and politicians on how to impose economic sanctions; they no longer provide sound economic information or advise investors on markets. Their editorial rants will incite an investor flight to buy king-sized mattresses for stuffing as the banks fail.

The US President is on the verge of a mental breakdown: He’s a liar of Munchausen proportions with a bad case of political paranoia, war hysteria and megalomania. He’s gone amok, braying, ‘I lead the world: its US leadership or chaos’. Increasingly the world has another message: ‘It’s the US and chaos.’

Wall Street is abandoning him. The Russians have double-crossed him. The Chinese merchants are now doing business everywhere we used to be and we ought to be. They’re playing with loaded dice. The stubborn Somalis refuse to submit to a Black President: they reject this ‘ML King with drones’ . . . The Germans suck on their thumbs in total stupor as Americans monitor and record their every conversation…for their own safety! “Our corporations are ingrates after all we have done for them”, the First Black President whines. “They flee from our taxes while we subsidize their operations!”

Final Solutions: The End of Chaos

The only solution is to move on: Chaos breeds chaos. The President strives to project his ‘Leadership’. He asks his close advisers very hard questions: “Why can’t we bomb Russia, just like Israel bombs Gaza? Why don’t we build an ‘Iron Dome’ over Europe and shoot down Russian nuclear missiles while we fire upon Moscow from our new bases in Ukraine? Which countries will our ‘Dome’ protect? I am sure that the people of East Europe and the Baltic States will gladly make the supreme sacrifice. After all, their leaders were at the very front frothing for a war with Russia. Their reward, a nuclear wasteland, will be a small price to ensure our success!”

The Zionist lobby will insist our ‘Iron Dome’ covers Israel. But the Saudis may try to bribe the Russians to spare the oil fields as Moscow targets the US missile bases near Mecca. Our radio-active allies in the Middle East will just have to relocate to a new Holy Land.

Do Obama and his advisers imagine reducing the Asian population by a billion or two? Do they plan several hundred Hiroshimas because the Chinese crossed the President’s ‘red lines’: China’s economy and trade grew too fast, expanded too far, it was too competitive, too competent, too successful at gaining market shares, and they ignored our warnings and our unparalleled military might.

Most of Asia will inhale nuclear dust, millions of Indians and Indonesians will perish as collateral damage. Their survivors will feast on ‘radiated fish’ in a glowing sea.

Beyond Chaos: The New American Way:

Because our ‘Iron Dome’ will have failed us, we will have to re-emerge out of toxic ashes and crawl from our bunkers, dreaming of a New America free from wars and poverty. The Reign of Chaos will have ended. The ‘peace and order’ of the graveyard will reign supreme.

The emperors will be forgotten.

And we never will have found out who fired that missile at the doomed Malaysian airliner with its 300 passengers and crew. We will have lost count of the thousands of Palestinian parents and children slaughtered in Gaza by the Chosen People of Israel. We will not know how the sanctions against Russia panned out.

It won’t matter in the post-nuclear age, after the Chaos…

 

source 

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the_politics_of_empire_031014_02-235x364Can’t understand how the US Senate can unanimously pass a resolution supporting the murderous Israeli assault on Gaza? Get some clarity. Award-winning Author and Professor Emeritus James Petras gets between 5-7,000 hits on his website every day.

To order the book go to James Petras site

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About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as The New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, Temps Moderne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished service award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from The University of california at Berkeley.

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NATO’s Nazi version of Freedom is Organized Evil against Humanity

Today, only the historically ill-informed, the deeply indoctrinated or the mentally ill, can see the Nazis and their alike as opponents to the globalists, the financial elite, the West’s ‘royal’ families, the ‘aristocrats’ and their ‘courts’ and ‘servants’. Nazism is the expression of ideas that was formed to protect exactly these people from Democracy or a new Bastille! Its logic, methods and tactics are therefore adopted by NATO, IDF, EU and U.S with offspring’s as Al-Qaeda and their latest ‘freak’, Kiev’s NATO assembled Gladio-army. The one who was put in place to prepare NATO’s invasion of Ukraine.

This article deals with the rise of Nazism, its character, its prerequisites, its alike and its heritage and contains the following 5 paragraphs:

  • Background
  • Why do the Nazis stand out as the worst War Criminals in the History of Mankind?
  • Evil is ‘Empathy Erosion’ and the Nazis made it a social norm
  • The devastating misconception of the concept of ‘Freedom’ in the West
  • Nazism and NATO

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Background

The EU and U.S supported Kiev-regime, with its hooligan mobs and its NATO assembled, ‘Gladio’ army; have with the Odessa massacre in May 2, 2014 and the ongoing massacres in East Ukraine begun a new era of ethnic cleansings in Europe. The Odessa massacre was a carefully staged covert intelligence operation with the aim to signal the beginning of Nazi terror on the European continent.

There was nothing ‘spontaneous’ or ‘accidental’, as the media suggested, in this diabolical undertaking which included the mass murder of 120+ humans inside the House of Trade Unions in Odessa. The building was quite deliberately set on fire as part of a carefully planned paramilitary operation, executed by American psychopaths of CIA’s special ops.

Israel’s and USA’s armies and their Intelligence services are the direct heirs of the Nazis and their dehumanizing-policies. The recently re-styled Nazi-regime in Ukraine is just a natural result of a 7 decades long CIA and MI6 sponsored Neo-nazism and so are the CIA and Mossad promoted Jihadists in the Arab world.

gladio

Today the EU- and U.S-media persistently tries to downplay and diminish the Nazi’s war crimes in WWII and their outstandingly misanthropic (human-hating from Greek μίσος [hate], άνθρωπος [human]) disposition and thereby give another image to Nazism. To slay, pole, rape and burn unarmed women, children and infants was and is, by the Nazis themselves declared to be a part of their ‘warfare tactics’. The exceptionally cruel character of the massacre in Odessa, May 2, 2014, and the ongoing massacres in Lugansk, has the same characteristics as the thousands of the German WWII massacres, performed by the Einsatzgruppen and the Waffen SS. Despite this clear similarities in both cruelty and tactics, the massacre in Odessa was reported and ‘explained’ by the western media, with a ‘logic’ that tried to wave off the staged crime as an unfortunate accident.

The two main prototypes for the war provoking and terrorizing the civilians to obedience tactics, that the Kiev-regime, NATO, IDF and EU are frequently using are two of the major Nazi-policies in WWII: 

  • “Covert Military or Paramilitary Operations Policy(false-flag ops) like the Gleiwitz incident, which ‘gave the excuse’ for the invasion of Poland.  Or a more relevant example as the Stay-Behind operations under the name “Operation Gladio”. They were formed in the end of WWII by the U.S-saved, and CIA supported Nazis and Fascists that the allies helped to reorganize. They have been active in Europe up to current days with Libya, Syria and Ukraine as its latest provoked NATO-engineered civil wars.
  • “Collective Punishment Policy(against unarmed civilians), like in Greece, Belarus, France, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine during WWII. Or more recent examples as the Odessa Massacre and the continuous Syria and Gaza massacres.

The Nuremberg trials clearly declared these policies to be criminal. Both these policies are considered as War Crimes according to the Fourth Geneva Convention (GCIV) part III, Article 33 and as  terrorism according to The Geneva Declaration on Terrorism Article I, paragraph 1 and 7. U.S, NATO and the IDF has fully adopted these policies and are since 1946 frequently using them as ordinary ‘warfare methods’ (IDF didn’t exist until 1948, but Haganah did).

It is out of highest importance today that we can understand what exactly Humanity stand against and what separates the Nazis and their alike, from all other mass-murderers in history. Their alike today is of course USA, Israel and the German led EU with NATO and the new EUROGENDFOR (European Gendarmerie Force) as today’s Wehrmacht and Gestapo.

Why does the Nazis stand out as the worst War Criminals in the History of Mankind?

The Nazis stand out from all the rest of humanity’s war criminals in a league of their own, because of their well-documented, unsurpassed cruelty and bloodthirst and their sadistic, misanthropic disposition, especially when dealing with unarmed civilian women, elders, children and infants. What is it that makes them stand out, compared to all other war criminals in the human history? The answer is quite simple really? It is the fact that they managed to turn the organized dehumanization of humans into a suitable ideology/cult, and they managed to make ‘empathy erosion’, the scientific term for evil (explained further down), a highly valued ‘quality’ and a widespread norm in the social character of the German society.  Intentionally, very well planned and well-organized, they nurtured misanthropic sentiments in the German society.

Due to this socio-psychological engineering, the Nazis could construct an unprecedented industrial form of genocide. They organized proper slaughter houses after the Assembly Line Principle, for the mass extermination of human beings. Human Experimentation and Industrial Extermination of humans, as “solutions” to cultural, political, geopolitical and socio-economic problems, were and still are compatible with the Nazi-version of a Human Civilization. No other war criminals, ‘slayers’ or tyrants in the human history, before the Nazis, went that far in their ‘refinement’ of their misanthropic feelings and urges. No one before them, did industrially recycle and use the skin, the fat and different body parts and body tissue from the mass murdered. 

Besides the Human Experimentation’s and the Industrial Extermination of over 15 million human beings, in the 23 main German extermination camps and over 1 200 sub-camps, they were particularly savage in their ‘warfare methods‘ against unarmed civilians. The Einsatzgruppen and the Waffen-SS performed thousands of massacres on unarmed civilians, particularly in Belarus, Greece, France, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine.

One example of this fact is from Greece and is very graphically explained by the late Sture Linnér, the Swedish head of the International Red Cross in Greece, when he described the grim reality he saw when he arrived in the little town of Distomo:

Vultures were rising slowly and hesitantly at a low height from the sides of the road when they heard us coming. On hundreds of yards along the road, human bodies were hanging from every tree, pierced with bayonets – some were still alive.

They were the villagers, who were punished this way – they were suspected of providing help to the guerillas of the region, who had ambushed an SS unit.

The odor was unbearable.

In the village the last remnants of the houses were still burning. Hundreds of dead bodies of people of all ages, from elderly to newborns, were strewn around on the dirt. Several women were slaughtered with bayonets, their wombs torn apart and their breasts severed; others were lying strangled with their own intestines wrapped around their necks.

disto03

1779 villages were burnt to rubble in Greece and over 430 massacres of unarmed civilians took place from June 1941 to August 1944. Greece lost as many people in WWII as USA and England together… 13% of its population.

Perhaps one of the most moving aspects of this fact comes again from Sture Linnér, who returned to Distomo at the end of the war, two months after the massacre:

When the German occupation forces were forced to leave Greece, things did not go as planned for them. A German unit was surrounded by guerillas exactly in the same area, at Distomo. I thought that this might be taken by the Greeks as an opportunity for a bloody revenge, especially when considering that for quite a while the region had been cut off from any food supplies. I loaded a few lorries with food and necessities, I wired to Distomo a word about our planned arrival, and we found ourselves on the same road, once again, Cleo and I.

When we reached the outskirts of the village, we were met by a committee led by the elderly priest. He was an old fashioned patriarch, with a long, wavy, white beard. Next to him stood the guerilla captain, fully armed. The priest spoke first and thanked us on behalf of the survivors for the food supplies. Then he added: “We are all starving here, both us and the German prisoners. Now, even though we are famished, we are at least in our land. The Germans have not just lost the war; they are also far from their country. Give them the food you have with you, they have a long way ahead.”

At this phrase Cleo turned her eyes to me. I suspected what she wanted to tell me with that look, but I could not see clearly any more. I was just standing there weeping….

“HUMANITY. It’s something the Nazis didn’t have and something the Hellenic people had — and still have — in abundance”.

Sture Linnér

The many thousands of similar examples from Greece, Belarus, France, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine, together with their Human Experiments and their Industrial Exterminations, are telling us one certain thing about the Nazis: They managed to organize, make into routine and express the ultimate evil in their ‘policies’, their ‘warfare methods’ and in their behavior against human beings in general. They developed methods, tactics, ‘logic’s’ and behavior that unfortunately many others have adopted since then.

Apart from the advanced Industrial Exterminations, NATO, U.S,  IDF and the German governed EU are permanently using the same ‘routines’ in their behavior against any humans they chose to see as degenerated or even as non-human. Human Experiment’s have been performed in recent years in the Guantanamo Bay medical facilities, in Abu Ghraib prison, and in several University Hospitals or prisons in USA, on the US army’s requests, since 1947.

Evil is ‘Empathy Erosion’ and the Nazis made it a social norm

Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen of Cambridge University describes ‘Empathy Erosion’ as:

“…when people dehumanize other humans, when they turn other people into objects, and can therefore become capable of malevolence and extreme human cruelty”.

The Nazis very much relied on their skillfully tailored ideological, political, scientific and historical propaganda myths, their ritualistic mass-meetings, their SS-brotherhoods elitist, racist indoctrination, their paramilitary political violence and terror, and their youth organizations. They developed a ‘system of education and nurturing‘ for the progress of the suitable norms, beliefs and preconditions, so that the organized ‘dehumanization of humans’ could develop on a mass scale in the German society. The leaders of the Nazi organization’s the Hitlerjugend (60% of all boys) and the Bund Deutscher Mädel (50% of all girls) imposed ‘empathy eroding‘ fostering methods and inside their framework, one of the purposes was to indoctrinate the youth with ‘race’-biological vulgar-science, twisted moralities and with nonsense-historical fairy-tales and myths, presented as historical facts. They did this to point out different ethnic and cultural groups or ‘races’ as non-human, and the progressive thinkers and the dissidents as ‘mentally ill’ or as ‘degenerates’ and therefore less human.

Civilians from the town of Ohrdruf were taken to view the bodies from the extermination camp and the visible, ‘human’ reactions were very few

U.S. Army soldiers show, the German civilians of Weimar, corpses found in Buchenwald concentration camp. One woman in the lower right section of the photo is the only one who seem to react in a normal, human way to the sight.

The Nuremberg trials condemned the indifference and the passivity of the German people living close to the 23 extermination camps, when the mass exterminations of humans took place on a daily basis for well over four years. It was evident that the over 20 years of dehumanization-propaganda and the Nazi-party’s tailored ‘empathy eroding’, education and training methods, in fact had made a majority of the Germans inhumanely tolerant and permissive of such atrocities. They had been fed with all the, according to the ‘logic’ of Nazism, “acceptable reasons” for such crimes against humanity.

Even if the methods differ a bit, they weren’t particularly different in essence, from the ‘dehumanization propaganda’ we are all force-fed with today, by the U.S and the EU governments and their media. This is done so that we shall accept the NATO led massacres and pogroms against unarmed civilians in Palestine, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine and any other place that U.S, EU and NATO decides to “liberate”. This propaganda is aiming for a clear social-psychological result – the same ‘empathy eroding’ social character as in Nazi-Germany. A historically very bizarre, but unfortunately very obvious, example of a society that has been put under a strict ‘empathy eroding’, social-psychological engineering policy, is the Israeli society.

On Israels war crimes Chris Hedges wrote in Nov, 2013 in IOA (Israeli Occupation Archive):

“Israel has been poisoned by the psychosis of permanent war. It has been morally bankrupted by the sanctification of victimhood, which it uses to justify an occupation that rivals the brutality and racism of apartheid South Africa. Its democracy — which was always exclusively for Jews — has been hijacked by extremists who are pushing the country toward fascism. Many of Israel’s most enlightened and educated citizens — 1 million of them — have left the country. Its most courageous human rights campaigners, intellectuals and journalists — Israeli and Palestinian — are subject to constant state surveillance, arbitrary arrests and government-run smear campaigns. Its educational system, starting in primary school, has become an indoctrination machine for the military.”

Read the whole article here

Now when the NATO led Nazi-massacres has begun also in Europe and the truth behind them are still, to a very high degree, met with indifference and apathy from the western societies, we should at least hold one thing in mind: One day, on the order of a decent and righteous ‘International Criminal Court’ that understands its role, the alleged “civilized” westerners (including the Israelis), might also be forced to walk through hills of hundreds of dead bodies, that the U.S-EU-NATO-IDF proxy wars has left behind. Maybe, we will be collectively judged for the collectively shown indifference and the collectively shown apathy, when our leaders over several decades were feeding us with lies, racist-propaganda, false flag operations, proxy wars, irrational, alleged ‘self-defense’ actions and other ‘acceptable reasons’ for the mass killings of innocent, human beings. We will most likely be condemned for our obvious racist disposition, which is clearly shown in the openly revealed differences in how we value Arab, Asian or African lives and American, European or Israeli lives.

That’s where the ‘ultimate evil‘ begins in our time. It begins with such generalizing, misanthropic sentiments. It begins with these artificially revived remnants of the ‘empathy-eroding’ Nazi-heritage and its ideological, spiritual and cultural foundations. It is this heritage that very strongly has contributed to the “barbarization” rather than the “civilization” of the West. Nowadays this Nazi-heritage of the western societies, has become very obvious through Kiev’s Nazi-regime, its NATO assembled Gladio-army and NATO’s and IDF’s crimes against the Palestinians and the Arabs. Many (including myself) argues that this heritage has been reawakened, most of all through the U.S’s and EU’s neo-liberal, socio-economic IMF/World Bank/WTO-policies with their clear society exhausting and genocidal intentions. Their criminal policies are predestined to increase and hasten the wished destabilization of the European societies and the dismantling of Democracy and Justice. It is a necessity for the neo-liberal “projects” to actually work. And it is a well-tried ‘recipe’ from Latin-America and Southeast-Asia, for Nazi and Fascist ‘dehumanization’ sentiments to rise and spread. This is the ‘ultimate evil’ unfolding again in Europe.

On TutuFoundationUSA.org the following comment was made on ‘erosion of empathy':

“Rather than dismissing the acts of evil as mere acts of insanity, it can be highly valuable to investigate what causes people to act so destructively. Dr Baron-Cohen, the author of the book The Science of Evil look at empathy in general and what a deficit of empathy in people can lead to.

He argues that empathy is distributed throughout the population as a bell curve. Some have a tremendous amount of empathy while others, those often labeled as psychopaths or with other psychiatric diagnoses, reside on the low end of the bell curve. Dr Baron-Cohen explains that the roots of empathy are derived from both nature and nurture. Those with little or no empathy may have different brain structure and functionality, or may have suffered environmental factors such as childhood neglect or abuse.”

Behavioral Cognitive Psychology shows that the absolute majority of individuals with ‘little or no empathy’ have suffered environmental factors as childhood neglect or abuse. It must be noted here that in behavioral research, social phenomenons as poverty and famine during childhood, are considered as environmental factors of childhood neglect and abuse. Sociological and criminological research shows that the type of  ‘empathy erosion’, which gives birth to organized subcultures of cruelty and evil, almost exclusively originates from childhood and adolescence neglect and abuse and long lasting poverty and social misery. Still, a few more ‘ingredients’ are needed in order to actually guarantee the appearance of structured, evil subcultures.

The development of structured, evil subcultures only emerges through the conscious organization of the ‘guidance’ and the ‘leadership’ of these groups. In a human society, this is best accomplished through intentional and continuous propaganda, infiltration, fear and repeated indoctrination. These facts are something that the Nazis understood very well. They had very good social-psychological insights, through the rich German literature on psychology and psychoanalysis, but in particular through a French social psychologist, sociologist and anthropologist, Gustave Le Bon’s and his book, The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind. It became a highly useful group-psychological guide when they customized their fostering methods, for the creation of the desired ‘erosion of empathy’ on mass scale. It is inevitable nowadays that these ‘evil subcultures’ primarily emerge in the western societies, since quite a few of the Nazis social engineering projects and methods are still implemented in these societies.

In our days unfortunately the ‘erosion of empathy’ is well inbuilt in almost all the aspects of a typical, western life.

The devastating misconception of the concept of Freedom in the West

The western societies has due to massive ‘empathy erosion’ and and a long lasting Social-Darwinist indoctrination developed a highly immature and very perverted perception of the concept of freedom. Not in words of course, but in behavior and actions. It is usually expressed as a very adolescent, self centered, one-sided, prejudiced and racist kind of freedom, due to a very high degree of ongoing and increasing dehumanization-policies in these societies. That’s from where the worst racist ideologies in the history of mankind has sprung forward, and that’s where the criminal logic of ethnic cleansing, genocide, plundering and colonizing on a global scale, are so blatantly excused.

Why we see most people in the west today more or less, even if maybe not supporting it, at least ‘accepting’ the rise of Nazism, is because:

  1. They are indifferent, arrogant and ignorant and fully preoccupied with satisfying their egoism and their narcissism.
  2. They are just receptive to ‘tailored truths’ that will satisfy their presumptions, theories and prejudices.
  3. They are historically misinformed and relies only on the culturally and socially served, popular, ‘empathy eroding’ tales.
  4. They don’t understand that the only truly effective antifascist-action is to establish real democracy and true justice.
  5. They don’t really believe in democracy and justice because they have accepted very selfish concepts of freedom in their lives for too long.
  6. It doesn’t touch them where it should, because their emotional lives are infected with mental and emotional ‘toxic waste’.

A mature and civilized understanding of freedom, in a truly developed and civilized human society, is NOT mainly expressed through how many natural moral principles one can break. Free to break every moral and ethical limits without any conscience or any responsibility for ones actions, is the most common version of practiced freedom in the western societies today. That alone is a crystal clear evidence of that these societies in fact are socially immature and spiritually backward. Because of these blatantly unacknowledged, collective, social diseases, such societies become extremely accepting towards cruel tyrannies, communal violence and wars. Needless to say, these societies are not particularly sustainable, and almost certain is that they are doomed to perish relatively quickly. It is ignorance, selfishness and indeed a very poor level of critical thinking, that are keeping most citizens in these societies from the necessary commitment, to unified build the adequate political and judicial ‘safety gates’ against tyranny. The real danger lies in the fact that its citizens are still convinced that ‘this kind of society is the best human society there is, even if it’s not perfect‘. What these citizens are incapable to understand, because of their social blinkers and their refusal of any adequate self-criticism, is that what ‘is not perfect‘, actually is exactly the intentionally imposed ‘empathy eroding’ policy, that allows misanthropy to become a highly accepted social norm. This fact put these societies very, very far away from the assessment “perfect” and instead one could argue that they are actually quite defect, at least from a utilitarian, human perspective.

This has happened because in almost every practiced aspect of a typical western life today, EGOISM is highly valued, cherished and developed and ALTRUISM is ignored, ridiculed and crippled. Therefore the western perverted, but nevertheless widely practiced form of freedom, is quite obviously a result of the following doctrine: “Do as you like – seek only constant physical and material satisfaction – have no regrets for whatever damage, affliction, misery or misfortune you might have caused others”. A very destructive doctrine which when it forms the general social character in a society, it causes fraudulent relations, distrust, conflicts, violence, revolts, wars and suffering, and it gives birth to organized ‘subcultures of evil’. What actually happens, when everything of the human side of humans is ignored and ridiculed and therefore numbed, calloused and dried out, is that ‘the empty shell’ of the human turns to Mammon for ‘salvation’ (as the despairing Jews did in Sinai). That is why personal profit and personal wealth is the outermost aim in a western or ‘westernized’ life, and that is why loneliness, hopelessness, depressions, emotional collapses, insanity, suicides and homicides, are far more common in the West (or westernized societies) than anywhere else.

“Start a company – take big loans – make sure that you can afford a few corporate lawyers and your own bodyguards and hit-men, and begin to abuse and misuse the world and the humans, for personal profit and satisfaction”!  This is the actual underlying message of the western, practiced, concept of freedom, based on the “do as you like doctrine”.

The West’s justice departments and legal authorities clear unwillingness, of bringing the obvious top criminals from the top layers of the society to justice, is what – with an indisputable clarity – reveals that the above mentioned doctrine, really is the underlying message of this kind of crime worshiping, western form of freedom.

The common understanding of the concept of freedom in the western societies is in other words not at all based on any particularly wider social insight, or any deeper understanding of what a human society, or a human being, really is. Actually, contrary to that, it is based on clearly immature pseudo-scientific conceptions, very backward minds and ugly emotional lives. Sadly enough, this has evolved in the western societies despite the availability of a very rich classical heritage, which clarifies and explains both very well. It is a heritage that also offers the adequate intellectual, spiritual and practical tools to humanity and the human societies, in order to evolve in accordance with the true nature of Man, and thus leave barbarism and misanthropic sentiments behind. That heritage is highly esteemed and revered in the West, only in words, but unfortunately extremely rarely in individual and social behavior and almost never in the practical expression of education, the law or in the governmental work. It is claimed to form the fundaments of western thinking, yet neither in words or in actions, the West seems to be capable of really understanding the almost 3 000 year old path to truly free, critically thinking humans, personally and socially civilized behavior and thus a real human civilization. One very deep reason behind this is the existence of a very ancient schism between two completely opposite idea-worlds as the basis for Western thinking. A very schizophrenic schism is hidden behind western thinking, which even though many academics actually have alarmed about it, it is never seriously considered, by the mainstream thinkers and scholars. At least not in its right proportions. One of these idea-worlds is the real cradle of western civilization and offers the liberation of the human being, and the other is the burial of this ‘cradle’ and offers the enslavement of the human being. One of them makes Tyrannies as Nazism and Fascism impossible and the other gives birth to them and nourishes them.

“…It is really this ancient schism between two contradicting idea-worlds and spiritual traditions,… this “schizophrenia” between Hellenism and Rothschild-Zionism, that the ruling classes have tried to crowd into ONE in the ‘modern Western civilization’. This paradox and this fundamental clash of ideas, is what really reflects the whole Western society in all its institutions, its culture its societies, its social character and its basic views on humans and Humanity.” - from the article: Hellenism is in danger, humanity is in danger

The Nazis and their alike represented and are still representing, in a very clear way, the morbid discrepancy between what they claim to be and what they actually are. A constantly repeated example of this fact, during the years of the German occupation in Greece, was the following behavior from the Germans: In Athens, the Nazis often went up to the Acropolis to admire the great works of the Greeks, but when walking down from there, in Plaka, underneath the Acropolis, the same officer who had just admired Parthenon could catch a little famished Greek kid, who had reached for a pretzel, and break his little arm over his knee. From the obvious delusion of being a cultivated human being, to one’s true beast-like character in just a few minutes. At such moments these feign civilized Germans, showed in a very clear way that they only understood to admire dead marble, but not what had inspired the art that was carved out from it. They certainly could not understand and much less admire the moral and ethical concepts, the richness of the minds and the humanity of those that brought Greek culture to the point where they created these, unsurpassed expressions of beauty. These inspired conscious expressions, of the FREE, enlightened and conscious human soul, and the true nobility of the human spirit.

The immensely corrupt form of freedom in the west, apparently chooses to value itself through how many of the lower human urges and desires, (characteristics that makes us more beast-like), its citizens can fulfill and satisfy, and not through how many of the higher human urges and desires, (characteristics that makes us more human-like) they can fulfill and satisfy.

U.S and EU are the “delivery boys” of this kind of pseudo-civilized social character and these soul-corrupting sub-cultures, and they make sure to ‘breastfeed’ them both, because it benefits their bankers and businessmen’s aims, but not only. Also NATO, the criminal, dehumanizing war machine, whose movements are controlled by the western banking family-dynasties, benefit tremendously by maintaining a society which produces lots of young people in despair, anxiety, anger and rage. A youth that will be deeply enraged and misled and therefore inclined to choose to kill and die for, what they don’t understand is just shameful, racist, high-tech, looting hordes called “armies”. Armies that in fact works under a handful of company logos and a few banking family-dynasties.

Nazism and NATO

Nazism is in reality not an ideology rooted in any particularly deeper moral philosophical reflections. Or rather, it is based on an emotionally disturbed teenager’s interpretations of a psychotics moral reflections (Nietzsche), a suicidal pessimists agony (Schopenhauer) and a megalomaniacs admiration of  ‘Lucifer’ disguised as an Aryan Christ (Wagner). Nazisms misanthropic “solutions” to political and socio-economic problems, therefore involve mass extermination of other ethnic, religious, social or political populations and experimentation on humans. Since such “solutions” poses an immediate threat to all of Humanity, they are incompatible with a Human civilization. Instead of a truly human civilization, Nazism aim for an anti-human barbarism dressed as an ideology, and it is very well suited to function as the ‘bodyguard’ and the ‘hit man’ of the globalists, the financial elite, the West’s royal families and the ‘aristocracy’ and their ‘courts’ and ‘servants’. Nazism was in fact formed in order to protect exactly these people, from real Democracy or a new Bastille

President Woodrow Wilson signing the Federal Reserve Act in 1913. Source: Woodrow Wilson Birthplace Foundation, painting by Wilbur G. Kurtz Sr.

Woodrow Wilson signing the Federal Reserve Act in 1913

Senator Nelson W. Aldrich a very good friend of J.P. Morgan called the following bankers and businessmen to the meeting on Jekyll Island in November 22, 1910.

  • Paul Warburg – (German representing Baron Alfred Rothschild’s Kuhn, Loeb & Co)
  • Henry P Davidson (Senior partner of J.P Morgan Company)
  • Charles D Norton (President of the Morgan First National Bank Of New York)
  • Abram Piatt Andrews (Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Dept)
  • Frank Vanderlip (President of the National City Bank Of New York)
  • Benjamin Strong (Representing J.P Morgan)

They arrived at the Jekyll Island Club to discuss monetary policy and the banking system, and this led to the creation of the current, privately owned Federal Reserve. Those who attended the meeting were sworn to secrecy and addressed each other only by code names. The use of last names was prohibited and the group therefore later referred to themselves as “The First Name Club”. 

With the birth of the FED, in 1913, in fact these bankers started a 100 year long “Financial Pyramid Game”. Nathan Mayer Rothschild (left) and J.D. Rockefeller (right) was the real ‘powerful’ two, behind the meeting on Jekyll Island even though none of them were there. These two family dynasties were the ones who would concentrate almost all the wealth of the world to themselves within the next 100 years.

A bankers son by the name of Heinrich Heine once said “Money is the god of our time, and Rothschild is his prophet”

Nazism was formed to keep these ‘banker-prophets’, their ‘projects’ and their allies safe from a new Bastille, and to keep the populations that wanted true democracy, terrorized, horrified and divided, fighting eachother, while these bankers gradually centralized power and wealth to themselves. Nazism has served these bankers well through two world wars, several revolutions, dictatorships, imperial wars and depressions. Why wouldn’t it serve them now under NATO’s command, during the ‘harvest times’ of the centuries, and their attack on ‘naughty’ Russia?

Nazism is a manufactured pseudo-ideology which was developed in a few conference rooms in Basel, Zurich, Vienna and Munich, in the late 1800’s, and it was put together by a few nationalist fanatics from Kaisers army, who probably believed in its alleged, anti-capitalist garb. As a political idea the fundamentals of what almost half a century later became Nazism, first emerged in England and USA in the 1870’s. It is based on racial hierarchy and social Darwinism, which means that it seek to apply biological concepts of natural selection and survival of the fittest to sociology and politics.

The fanatics from Kaisers army didn’t realize the fact that a handful of the promoter’s and financier’s, behind Theodore Herzl’s Zionist movement, also had their plans for the anti-capitalistic, national-socialistic currents and sentiments. History have with accuracy proved that Nazism in practice, is anything but anti-capitalistic. Regardless of what Hitler and his mentors knew or didn’t know about the shadowy activities in Basel, Vienna, Zurich and Munich, Nazism was born through capitalists, supported by capitalists and it was and is favored and used by capitalists. These capitalists have used and interlinked nationalistic, pan-German sentiments, with the Rothschild-Zionist aims from the end of the 19th century. These cooperating, informal associations originate from the less known activities of some members of the Burschenschaft, the German nationalist student association, the Mayor of Vienna, Karl Leuger, the founder of the Austrian, Christian Social Party, Colonel Albert Edward Williamson Goldsmid and Frederick I, Grand Duke of Baden.

Ιn the absolute philosophic and spiritual core of Nazism was, as mentioned before, of course Hitler’s own twisted interpretations of Nietzsche’s already twisted theories on morality. Nietzsche, the tragic philosopher, attempts in his book “The Origins of Morality”, to turn all values inside out in order to “prove” that what was called good is actually evil and what was called evil is actually good. The adolescent, existentially very confused, Hitler at the age of 15, interpreted*1 the writings of Nietzsche. He was enchanted by the pessimist Schopenhauer who said that “good and evil doesn’t exist” (this provides good moral excuses for barbarism), and he was greatly inspired by Richard Wagner, who adored ‘Lucifer’, cunningly disguised to an Aryan Christ (the real moral image of the Catholic church).

These three historic figures expressed all the philosophical and spiritual grounds upon which a young Hitler based Nazism, with the help of three of Kaisers generals.

*From a biological-neurological perspective,philosophical and spiritual texts can’t be adequately understood or interpreted by neurologically and emotionally still developing minds, as for instance a 15-year old. Particularly not by emotionally, severely traumatized, still developing minds. The neurological system of a Human being is not fully developed until the age of 19 – 22.

So this surrogate ideologywhich is mentally based on fear, indoctrination, megalomania, superstitions and occultism, was developed with the help of three fanatic generals and occultists from Kaisers army. Karl Haushoffer, Helmuth von Moltke and Konrad von Hotzendorf headhunted and emotionally and spiritually, they ‘prepared and initiated’ Adolf Hitler as the Messianic figure of Nazism, a few years after WWI. They developed Nazisms myths, rites and customs, by using old Germanic legends, the Thule-society’s occult teachings and rituals together with anti-Jewish socio-economic, geopolitical and racial ideas and they molded this into a suitable militarized blood-cult, a hate ideology.

The anti-Jewish sentiments suited the Rothschild-Zionists*2 aims perfect, since this would accelerate their aims, when many of the leaders in Europe were skeptic to the Zionist “project” for a Jewish state. The generals at the time didn’t know that a handful of the conspirators from Basel, Zurich, Vienna and Munich was capitalists and Zionists who wanted an ‘ideological tool’, an anti-Jewish, militant movement that through its actions would bring about the acceptance of a Jewish state. In the 30’s Nazism became a perfect ‘tool’ in order to crush any real democratic, real freedom longing sentiments, with extreme violence, terror and massacres on a mass scale, and that’s what it has become today again. No other -isms are in fact helping the capitalists to centralize power and wealth and defend themselves against democracy or a new Bastille as good, as Nazism and the current Neo-liberalism do.

NATO (our days ‘Wehrmacht’), openly today show that there is truly no place for empathy, humanity and human dignity in the western world anymore. Justice, Righteousness and the Free Word have been sacrificed and replaced with ‘Obedience or Extermination’. This is in accordance with the criminal “Collective Punishment Policy” and the “Covert Military or Paramilitary Operations Policy“, which has become the foundations for their new doctrine – actually not at all essentially different from the logic’s of the Catholic Church’s ‘Holy Inquisition doctrine’ during the dark Middle Ages. The European ‘kingdoms’, ‘empires’ and societies, who together used to aspire for the title ‘Western Civilization’ since the Renaissance, can now only be called an ‘Empire of Misanthropy & Death’.

The Renaissance which was the cultural and intellectual expression of the longing and the rebirth of the ancient Greek heritage, was the way out of the dark Middle Ages. The, by NATO, IMF, USA and EU, aggressively pushed for ‘New World Order‘, is the way back into them again – but now in a new high-tech, vulgar-scientific, mind and soul enslaving and human exterminating version. This was and is the aim of Nazism, regardless whether their “devotees” understands it or not. And that’s why it suits the ‘royals’ and ‘the elite’ so well and that is why such a catastrophic, massive, ‘social-psychological disorder’, is still called an ideology, and can continue to infiltrate the western societies and their social character, with its ‘empathy eroding’ and ‘dehumanizing’ tactics.

Nazism, we must therefore understand, is NOT just another ‘ideology’ and certainly not an answer against Capitalism. It is a skillfully manufactured ‘excuse’ for the intentional, organized ‘erosion of empathy’ and through that, the mass killings and the extermination of human beings. The labels ‘Nazism’ and ‘National-socialism’ have turned out to be just a political and social-economic camouflage, of sheer sadism, bloodthirst and misanthropy. NATO’s Nazi version of freedom is in fact Organized Evil against humanity. That’s how the entirety of Mankind must see it and its alike, and essentially that’s how Justice and the International Legal Authorities and Courts must treat it and its alike.  

 

Kosmas Loumakis

Stockholm 31-07-2014

 

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Rothschild-Zionism*2

In this article, when I refer to Zionism I describe Rothschild’s version of Zionism (identical with ancient Phariseeism), which actually is more about the cultural “hijacking” of the true Jewish religion and its traditions, in order to serve an oligarchic banking-family’s aims for global power, with the current state of Israel as its shield and its vehicle towards this goal and with the USA and UK as its guards…  There are Christian Zionists and Muslim Zionists no matter how strange that can sound, simply because today’s Rothschild-Zionism has not anything particular to do with the real Jewish religion (Moses people’s law) but only with the aims of those families and their plans with the state of Israel (Mammon’s doctrine). They consider themselves as “kings” and “emperors” of humanity and they are using Israel and the Jews in order to fulfill their quest for global dominance and to establish their positions as self appointed demigods of mankind.

The Soaring Profits of the Military – Industrial Complex And the Soaring Costs of Military Casualties

petras

Introduction: There are two major beneficiaries of the two major wars launched by the US government: one domestic and one foreign. The three major domestic arms manufacturers, Lockheed Martin (LMT), Northrop Grumman (NOG) and Raytheon (RTN) have delivered record-shattering returns to their investors, CEOs and investment banks during the past decade and a half.

he Israeli regime is the overwhelming foreign beneficiary of the war, expanding its territory through its dispossession of Palestinians and positioning itself as the regional hegemon. Israel benefited from the US invasion which destroyed Iraq, a major ally of the Palestinians; the invasion provided cover for massive Israel’s settler expansion in the Occupied Palestinian territories. In the course of its invasion and occupation Washington systematically destroyed Iraq’s armed forces and civil infrastructure, shredding its complex modern society and state. By doing so, the US occupation removed one of Israel’s major regional rivals.

In terms of cost to the United States, hundreds of thousands of soldiers who had served in the war zones have sustained severe physical and mental injuries, while thousands have died directly or indirectly through an epidemic of soldier suicides. The invasion and occupation of Iraq has cost the United States trillions of dollars and counting. Despite the immense costs to the American people, the military-industrial complex and the pro-Israel power configuration continue to keep the US government on a wartime economy – undermining the domestic social safety net and standard of living of many millions.

No peaceful economic activity can match the immense profits enjoyed by the military-industrial complex in war. This powerful lobby continues to press for new wars to sustain the Pentagon’s huge budget. As for the pro-Israel power configuration, any substantive diplomatic peace negotiations in the Middle East would end their naked land grabs, reduce or curtail new weapons transfers and undermine pretexts to sanction or attack countries, like Iran, that stand in the way of Tel Aviv’s vision of “Greater Israel”, unrivaled in the region.

The costs of almost 15 years of warfare weigh heavily on the US Treasury and electorate. The wars have been dismal failures if not outright defeats. New sectarian conflicts have emerged in Syria, Iraq and, now, Ukraine – opportunities for the US arms industry and the pro-Israel lobbies to make even greater profits and gain more power.

The on-going horrendous costs of past and continuing wars make the launch of new military interventions more difficult for US and Israeli militarists. The US public expresses wide-spread discontent over the burden of the recent past wars and shows even less stomach for new wars to profit the military-industrial complex and further strengthen Israel.

 

War Profits

The power and influence of the military-industrial complex in promoting serial wars has resulted in extraordinary rates of profit. According to a recent study by Morgan Stanley (cited in Barron’s, 6/9/14, p. 19), shares in the major US arms manufacturers have risen 27,699% over the past fifty years versus 6,777% for the broader market. In the past three years alone, Raytheon has returned 124%, Northrup Grumman 114% and Lockheed Martin 149% to their investors.

The Obama regime makes a grand public show of reducing the military budget via the annual appropriation bill, and then, turns around and announces emergency supplemental funds to cover the costs of these wars. . .thereby actually increasing military spending, all the while waving the banner of ‘cost cutting’. Obama’s theatrics have fattened the profits for the US military-industrial complex.

War profits have soared with the series of military interventions in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. The arms industry lobbyists pressure Congressional and Pentagon decision-makers to link up with the pro-Israel lobby as it promotes even deeper direct US military involvement in Syria, Iraq and Iran. The growing ties between Israeli and US military industries reinforce their political leverage in Washington by working with liberal interventionists and neo-conservatives. They attack Obama for not bombing Syria and for his withdrawal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan. They now clamor for sending US troops back to Iraq and call for intervention in Ukraine. Obama has argued that proxy wars without direct US troop involvement do not require such heavy Pentagon expenditures as the arms industry demands. The Obama regime has presented the withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan as a necessary step to reduce US financial and military losses. This was in response to Wall Street’s pressure to cut the budget deficit. Obama’s attempt to meet the demands of the US financial sector has come at the price of cutting potential profit for the military industrial complex as well as infuriating Israel and its fanatical supporters in the US Congress.

The Fight over the Military Budget: Veterans versus the Complex and the Lobby

In the face of rising domestic pressure to reduce the budget deficit and cut military spending, the US military-industrial complex and its Zionist accomplices are fighting to retain their share by eliminating programs designed to serve the health needs of active and retired soldiers. Soaring disability costs related to the recent wars will continue for decades. Veteran health care costs are expected to double to 15% of the defense budget in the next five years. The huge public cost of caring for soldiers and veterans means “bad news for defense stocks” according to financial analysts (Barron’s, 6/9/14, p. 19).

This is reason why the arms industries promote the closure of scores of Veterans Administration hospitals and a reduction in retiree benefits, using the pretext of fighting fraud, incompetence and poor quality service compared with the ‘private sector’. The same corporate warlords and lobbyists who clamor to send US troops to back to Iraq and to new wars in Syria and Ukraine, where young lives, limbs and sanity are at great risk, are also in the forefront of a fight to slash funding for the veterans’ medical care. Economists have long noted that the more dollars spent on veterans’ and military retirees’ health care, the less allocated for war materials, ships and aircraft. Today it is estimated that over $900 billion dollars will have been spent on long-term VA medical and disability services for veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. That number is clearly set to rise with each new intervention.

The corporate warlords are urging Congress to increase co-pays, enrollment fees and deductibles for veterans, retirees and active duty personnel enrolled in military health insurance plans, such as Tricare, as well as limiting access to the VA.

The fight over Pentagon expenditures is a struggle over war or social justice: health services for troops and veterans versus weapons programs that fatten corporate profits for the arms industry.

source

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About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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An Open Letter to the Graduates of West Point: Refuting President Obama’s Lies, Omissions and Distortions

petras

Introduction: On May 2014 President Obama delivered the commencement address to the graduates of United States Military Academy at West Point. Beyond the easy banter and eulogy to past and present war heroes, Obama outlined a vision of past military successes and present policies, based on a profoundly misleading diagnosis of the current global position of the United States

The most striking aspect of his presentation is the systematic falsification of the results of past wars and current military interventions. The speech is notable for the systematic omissions of the millions of civilian deaths inflicted by US military interventions. He glosses over the growth of NSA, the global police state apparatus. He presents a grossly inflated account of the US role in the world economy. Worse of all he outlines an extremely dangerous confrontational posture toward rising military and economic powers, in particular Russia and China.

Distorting the Past: Defeats and Retreats Converted into Victories

One of the most disturbing aspects of President Obama’s speech is his delusional account of US military engagements over the past decade. His claim that, “by most measures America has rarely been stronger relative to the rest of the world”, defies belief. After 13 years of warfare, the US has failed to defeat the Taliban. Washington is in full retreat and leaves behind a fragile puppet regime which will likely collapse. In Iraq the US was forced to withdraw after killing several hundred thousand civilians and fueling a sectarian war which has propelled a pro-Iranian regime to power. In Libya, the NATO war devastated the country, destroyed the Gadhafi government,thus undermining reconciliation, and bringing to power bands of terrorist Islamic groups profoundly hostile to the United States.

Washington’s effort to broker an accord between Palestine and Israel was a dismal failure, largely because of the Obama regime’s spineless attitude toward Israel’s land grabs, and new “Jews only” settlements. The craven pandering to the Jewish power configuration in Washington hardly speaks for the world’s “greatest power” … by any measure.

Through your economic studies you are surely aware that the US has been displaced by China in major markets in Latin America, Asia and Africa. China poses a major economic challenge: it does not have overseas bases, Special Forces’ operations in seventy-five countries; it does not pursue military alliances and does not militarily intervene in countries. Obama’s expansion of the US military presence off China’s coast speaks to an escalation of bellicose behavior, contrary to his assertions of “winding down” overseas military operations.

Obama speaks of defending “our core interests” militarily.Yet he threatens China over disputed piles of rocks in the South China Sea, overlooking the “core interests” of the 500 biggest US corporations with hundreds of billions of dollars invested in the most dynamic economy in the world and the second biggest trading nation.

Obama spoke of the threat of “terrorism” yet his policies have encouraged and promoted terrorism. Washington armed and promoted the Islamic terrorists which overthrew Gadhafi; backs the Islamic terrorists invading Syria; provides 1.5 billion in military aid to the Egyptian military dictatorship which is terrorizing the political opposition, via assassinations and arrests of thousands of political dissidents. The US backed the violent overthrow of the elected regime in the Ukraine and is backing the client regime’s terror bombing of the pro-democracy Eastern regions. Obama’s “anti-terrorism”rhetoric is in fact a cover for state terrorism, which closes the door on peaceful resolution of overseas conflicts, and leads to the multiplication of violent opposition groups.

Obama speaks to “our success in promoting partnerships in Europe and in the world at large”. Yet his bellicose policies toward Russia has deeply divided the US from the leading countries in the European Union. Germany has multi-billion dollar trade agreements with Russia and objects to harsh sanctions as does Italy, Holland and Belgium. Latin America has relegated the US centered Organization of American States to the dust bin of history and moved toward regional organizations which exclude the US. Washington has no “partners” backing its hostile policies toward Venezuela and Cuba. In Asia, Washington’s efforts to forge an economic bloc excluding China, runs against the deep and comprehensive ties that link South Korea, Taiwan and Southeast Asia to China. Washington’s closest partners are the least dynamic and most repressive: Israel, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states in the Middle East; Egypt, Morocco and Algeria in North Africa; Colombia in Latin America ; and motley groups of sub-Sahara despots and Kleptocrats who squirrel billions of dollars into oversees bank accounts in New York and London far in excess of their countries’ health and educational budgets .

Obama’s diagnosis of the position of the US in the world is fundamentally flawed: he grossly understates the military losses, the decline of economic power,and the growing divisions between former regional allies .Above all he refuses to recognize the profound loss of faith by the majority of Americans in Washington’s foreign military and trade policies. The flawed diagnosis, the deliberate distortions of present global realities and the deep misreading of domestic public opinion cannot be overcome by new deceptions , bigger lies and the continuation and escalation of military interventions, in which you the newly minted officers will serve as cannon fodder.

Obama: Political Desperado in Search of an Imperial Legacy

Obama has marked a new phase in the escalation of a military centered foreign policy.He is presently engaged in a major military build-up of air and ground troops and military exercises in the Baltic States and Poland…all of which is pointing toward Russia and signaling that a possible ‘First Strike’ strategy is underway. Obama has been seized by a manic global military escalation..He is expanding naval forces off China’s coast. He has dispatched hundreds of Special Forces to Jordan to train and arm mercenaries invading Syria.He is intervening militarily in the Ukraine to bolster the Kiev regime.He has dispatched hundreds of military forces throughout Africa.He has allocated $1 billion for military expenditure along the European frontiers with Russia and $5 billion to boost the capacity of despotic regimes to repress popular insurgencies under the pretext of “fighting terrorism”.

Obama’s ‘vision’ of US foreign policy is clearly and unmistakably colored by a propensity to engage in highly dangerous military confrontations. His resort to multiple “Special Forces” operations, his increasing reliance on military proxies, is a reversion to 19th century colonial policies.Recruiting soldiers from one oppressed country to conquer another, is a throwback to old style empire building. When Obama speaks of “American leadership, as indispensable for world order” he deceives no one. The Washington centered world order is disintegrating. Disorder is the consequence of military intervention attempting to delay the inevitable.

The Obama Administration’s involvement in the violent coup in the Ukraine is a case in point: as a consequence of the rise to power of a junta headed by a billionaire “President”,power sharing with neo-fascists that country is disintegration, civil war rages and the economy is bankrupt. Obama’s war on Libya has led to a Hobbesian world in which warlords fight jihadists over shrinking oil sales. In Syria US backed ‘rebels’ have destroyed the economy and the social fabric of civil society.

No major country in South America follows US ‘leadership’. Even in the United States few American citizens back Obama’s hostile policies to Cuba and Venezuela.

Obama’s duplicitous rhetoric of talking peace and preparing wars has lost credibility. Obama is preparing to commit you, the newly commissioned officers of West Point, to new overseas wars opposed by the majority of Americans.

Obama will send you to war zones in which you will be pitted against popular insurgencies, in which you will be despised by the surrounding population. You will be asked to defend an Administration which has pillaged the Treasury to bail out the 15 biggest banks, who paid $78 billion dollars in fines between 2012 – 2013 for fraud and swindles and yet their CEO’s received double digit pay increases . You will be told to fight wars for Israel in the Middle East. You will be ordered to command bases in Poland and missles aimed at Russia.You will be sent to the Ukraine to advise neo-Nazis in the National Guard. You will be told to subvert Latin American military officials in hopes of inciting a military coup and converting independent progressive governments into neo-liberal client states.

Obama’s vision does not resonate with your hopes for an America committed to democracy, freedom and development. You face the choice of serving a political desperado intent on launching unjust wars at the behest of billionaire swindlers and armchair militarists or resigning your commission and joining the majority of American people who believe that America’s “leadership” should be directed at reducing the wealth and power of an unelected oligarchy in this country.

source

________________________________________________________________

About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Brazil: Workers Struggle Trumps Sports Spectacle

petras

Introduction: For decades social critics have bemoaned the influence of sports and entertainment spectacles in ‘distracting’ workers from struggling for their class interests. According to these analysts, ‘class consciousness’ was replaced by ‘mass’ consciousness.

They argued that atomized individuals, manipulated by the mass media, were converted into passive consumers who identified with millionaire sports heroes, soap opera protagonists and film celebrities.

The culmination of this ‘mystification’ – mass distraction –were the ‘world championships’ watched by billions around the world and sponsored and financed by billionaire corporations: the World Series (baseball), the World Cup (soccer/futbol), and the Super Bowl (American football).

Today, Brazil is the living refutation of this line of cultural-political analysis. Brazilians have been described as ‘football crazy’. Its teams have won the most number of World Cups. Its players are coveted by the owners of the most important teams in Europe. Its fans are said to “live and die with football” . . . Or so we are told.

Yet it is in Brazil where the biggest protests in the history of the World Cup have taken place. As early as a year before the Games, scheduled for June 2014, there have been mass demonstrations of up to a million Brazilians. In just the last few weeks, strikes by teachers, police, construction workers and municipal employees have proliferated. The myth of the mass media spectacles mesmerizing the masses has been refuted – at least in present-day Brazil.

To understand why the mass spectacle has been a propaganda bust it is essential to understand the political and economic context in which it was launched, as well as the costs and benefits and the tactical planning of popular movements.

The Political and Economic Context: The World Cup and the Olympics

In 2002, the Brazilian Workers Party candidate Lula DaSilva won the presidential elections. His two terms in office (2003 – 2010) were characterized by a warm embrace of free market capitalism together with populist poverty programs. Aided by large scale in-flows of speculative capital, attracted by high interest rates, and high commodity prices for its agro-mineral exports, Lula launched a massive poverty program providing about $60 a month to 40 million poor Brazilians, who formed part of Lula’s mass electoral base. The Workers Party reduced unemployment, increased wages and supported low-interest consumer loans, stimulating a ‘consumer boom’ that drove the economy forward.

To Lula and his advisers, Brazil was becoming a global power, attracting world-class investors and incorporating the poor into the domestic market.

Lula was hailed as a ‘pragmatic leftist’ by Wall Street and a ‘brilliant statesman’ by the Left!

In line with this grandiose vision (and in response to hoards of presidential flatterers North and South), Lula believed that Brazil’s rise to world prominence required it to ‘host’ the World Cup and the Olympics and he embarked on an aggressive campaign. . . Brazil was chosen.

Lula preened and pontificated: Brazil, as host, would achieve the symbolic recognition and material rewards a global power deserved.

The Rise and Fall of Grand Illusions

The ascent of Brazil was based on foreign flows of capital conditioned by differential (favorable) interest rates. And when rates shifted, the capital flowed out. Brazil’s dependence on high demand for its agro-mineral exports was based on sustained double-digit economic growth in Asia. When China’s economy slowed down, demand and prices fell, and so did Brazil’s export earnings.

The Workers Party’s ‘pragmatism’ meant accepting the existing political, administrative and regulatory structures inherited from the previous neo-liberal regimes. These institutions were permeated by corrupt officials linked to building contractors notorious for cost over-runs and long delays on state contracts.

Moreover, the Workers Party’s ‘pragmatic’ electoral machine was built on kick-backs and bribes. Vast sums were siphoned from public services into private pockets.

Puffed up on his own rhetoric, Lula believed Brazil’s economic emergence on the world stage was a ‘done deal’. He proclaimed that his pharaonic sports complexes – the billions of public money spent on dozens of stadiums and costly infrastructure – would “pay for themselves”.

The Deadly ‘Demonstration Effect’: Social Reality Defeats Global Grandeur

Brazil’s new president, Dilma Rousseff, Lula’ protégé, has allocated billions of reales to finance her predecessor’s massive building projects: stadiums, hotels, highways and airports to accommodate an anticipated flood of overseas soccer fans.

The contrast between the immediate availability of massive amounts of public funds for the World Cup and the perennial lack of money for deteriorating essential public services (transport, schools, hospitals and clinics) has been a huge shock to Brazilians and a provocation to mass action in the streets.

For decades, the majority of Brazilians, who depended on public services for transport, education and medical care, (the upper middle classes can afford private services), were told that “there were no funds”, that “budgets had to be balanced”, that a “budget surplus was needed to meet IMF agreements and to service the debt”.

For years public funds had been siphoned away by corrupt political appointees to pay for electoral campaigns, leading to filthy, overcrowded transport, frequently breaking down, and commuter delays in sweltering buses and long lines at the stations. For decades, schools were in shambles, teacher rushed from school to school to make-up for their miserable minimum-wage salaries leading to low quality education and neglect. Public hospitals were dirty, dangerous and crowded; under-paid doctors frequently took on private patients on the side, and essential medications were scarce in the public hospitals and overpriced in the pharmacies.

The public was outraged by the obscene contrast between the reality of dilapidated clinics with broken windows, overcrowded schools with leaking roofs and unreliable mass transport for the average Brazilian and the huge new stadiums, luxury hotels and airports for wealthy foreign sports fans and visitors.

The public was outraged by the obvious official lies: the claim that there were ‘no funds’ for teachers when billions of Reales were instantly available to construct luxury hotels and fancy stadium box seats for wealthy soccer fans.

The final detonator for mass street protest was the increase in bus and train fares to ‘cover losses’ – after public airports and highways had been sold cheaply to private investors who raised tolls and fees.

The protestors marching against the increased bus and train fares were joined by tens of thousands Brazilians broadly denouncing the Government’s priorities: Billions for the World Cup and crumbs for public health, education, housing and transport!

Oblivious to the popular demands, the government pushed ahead intent on finishing its ‘prestige projects’. Nevertheless, construction of stadiums fell behind schedule because of corruption, incompetence and mismanagement. Building contractors, who were pressured, lowered safety standards and pushed workers harder, leading to an increase in workplace deaths and injury. Construction workers walked out protesting the speed-ups and deterioration of work safety.

The Rousseff regime’s grandiose schemes have provoked a new chain of protests. The Homeless Peoples Movement occupied urban lots near a new World Cup stadium demanding ‘social housing’ for the people instead of new five-star hotels for affluent foreign sports aficionados.

Escalating costs for the sports complexes and increased government expenditures have ignited a wave of trade union strikes to demand higher wages beyond the regime’s targets. Teachers and health workers were joined by factory workers and salaried employees striking in strategic sectors, such as the transport and security services, capable of seriously disrupting the World Cup.

The PTs embrace of the grandiose sports spectacle, instead of highlighting Brazil’s ‘debut as a global power’, has spotlighted the vast contrast between the affluent and secure ten percent in their luxury condos in Brazil, Miami and Manhattan, with access to high quality private clinics and exclusive private and overseas schools for their offspring, with the mass of average Brazilians, stuck for hours sweating in overcrowded buses, in dingy emergency rooms waiting for mere aspirins from non-existent doctors and in wasting their children’s futures in dilapidated classrooms without adequate, full-time teachers.

Conclusion

The political elite, especially the entourage around the Lula-Rousseff Presidency have fallen victim to their own delusions of popular support. They believed that subsistence pay-offs (food baskets) to the very poor would allow them to spend billions of public money on sports spectacles to entertain and impress the global elite. They believed that the mass of workers would be so enthralled by the prestige of holding the World Cup in Brazil, that they would overlook the great disparity between government expenditures for elite grand spectacles and the absence of support to meet the everyday needs of Brazilian workers.

Even trade unions, seemingly tied to Lula, who bragged of his past leadership of the metal workers, broke ranks when they realized that the ‘money was out there’ – and that the regime, pressured by construction deadlines, could be pressured to raise wages to get the job done.

Make no mistake, Brazilians are sports minded. They avidly follow and cheer their national team. But they are also conscious of their needs. They are not content to passively accept the great social disparities exposed by the current mad scramble to stage the World Cup and Olympics in Brazil. The government’s vast expenditure on the Games has made it clear that Brazil is a rich country with a multitude of social inequalities. They have learned that vast sums are available to improve the basic services of everyday life. They realized that, despite its rhetoric, the ‘Workers Party’ was playing a wasteful prestige game to impress an international capitalist audience. They realized that they have strategic leverage to pressure the government and address some of the inequalities in housing and salaries through mass action. And they have struck. They realize they deserve to enjoy the World Cup in affordable, adequate public housing and travel to work (or to an occasional game) in decent buses and trains. Class consciousness, in the case of Brazil, has trumped the mass spectacle. ‘Bread and circuses’ have given way to mass protests.

source

________________________________________________________________

About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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The Rise of the European Right: Reaction to the Neoliberal Right

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Introduction: The European parliamentary elections witnessed a major breakthrough for the right-wing parties throughout the region. The rise of the Right runs from the Nordic countries, the United Kingdom, the Baltic and Low countries, France, Central and Eastern Europe to the Mediterranean.

Most, if not all, of these emerging right-wing parties mark a sharp break with the ruling neo-liberal, Christian and Social Democratic parties who have presided over a decade of crisis.

The ‘new Right’ cannot be understood simply by attaching negative labels (‘fascist’, ‘racist’ and ‘anti-Semitic’). The rise of the Right has to be placed in the context of the decay of political, social and economic institutions, the general and persistent decline of living standards and the disintegration of community bonds and class solidarity. The entire existing political edifice constructed by the neo-liberal parties bears deep responsibility for the systemic crisis and decay of everyday life. Moreover, this is how it is understood by a growing mass of working people who vote for the Right.

The so-called ‘radical Left’, usually defined as the political parties to the left of the governing Social Democratic parties, with the exception of SYRIZA in Greece, have failed to capitalize on the decline of the neo-liberal parties. There are several reasons that account for the lack of a right-left polarization. Most of the ‘radical Left’, in the final account, gave ‘critical support’ to one or another of the Labor or Social Democratic parties and reduced their ‘distance’ from the political-economic disasters that have followed. Secondly, the ‘radical Left’s’ positions on some issues were irrelevant or offensive to many workers: namely, gay marriage and identity politics. Thirdly, the radical Left recruited prominent personalities from the discredited Labor and Social Democratic parties and thus raised suspicion that they are a ‘new version’ of past deceptions. Fourthly, the radical Left is strong on public demonstrations demanding ‘structural changes’ but lacks the ‘grass roots’ clientelistic organizations of the Right, which provide ‘services’, such as soup kitchens and clinics dealing with day-to-day problems.

While the Right pretends to be ‘outside’ the neo-liberal establishment challenging the assumption of broad powers by the Brussels elite, the Left is ambiguous: Its support for a ‘social Europe’ implies a commitment to reform a discredited and moribund structure. The Right proposes ‘national capitalism’ outside of Brussels; the Left proposes ‘socialism within the European Union’. The Left parties, the older Communist parties and more recent groupings, like Syriza in Greece, have had mixed results. The former have generally stagnated or lost support despite the systemic crisis. The latter, like Syriza, have made impressive gains but failed to break the 30% barrier. Both lack electoral allies. As a result, the immediate challenge to the neo-liberal status quo comes from the electoral new Right parties and on the left from the extra-parliamentary social movements and trade unions. In the immediate period, the crisis of the European Union is being played out between the neo-liberal establishment and the ‘new Right’.

The Nature of the New Right

The ‘new Right’ has gained support largely because it has denounced the four pillars of the neo-liberal establishment: globalization, foreign financial control, executive rule by fiat (the Brussels troika) and the unregulated influx of cheap immigrant labor.

Nationalism, as embraced by the new Right, is tied to national capitalism: Local producers, retailers and farmers are counterpoised to free traders, mergers and acquisitions by international bankers and the giant multinationals. The ‘new Right’ has its audience among the provincial and small town business elite as well as workers devastated by plant closures and relocations.

The ‘new Right’s’ nationalism is ‘protectionist’ – seeking tariff barriers and state regulations to protect industries and workers from ‘unfair’ competition from overseas conglomerates and low-wage immigrant labor.

The problem is that protectionism limits the imports of cheap consumer goods sold in many small retail shops and affordable to workers and the lower middle class. The Right ‘dreams’ of a corporatist model where national workers and industries bond to oppose liberal competitive capitalism and class struggle trade unions. As the class struggle declines, the ‘tri partite’ politics of the neo-liberal right is reconfigured by the New Right to include ‘national’ capital and a ‘paternalistic state’.

In sum, the nationalism of the Right evokes a mythical past of harmony where national capital and labor unite under a common communal identity to confront big foreign capital and cheap immigrant labor.

Political Strategy: Electoral and Extra-Parliamentary Politics

Currently, the new Right is primarily oriented to electoral politics, especially as it gains mass support. They have increased their share of the electorate by combining mass mobilization and community organizing with electoral politics, especially in depressed areas. They have attracted middle class voters from the neo-liberal right and working class voters from the old Left. While some sectors of the Right, like the Golden Dawn in Greece, openly flaunt fascist symbols – flags and uniforms – as well as provoking street brawls, others pressure the governing neo-liberal right to adopt some of their demands especially regarding immigration and the ‘deportation of illegals’. For the present, most of the new Right’s focus is on advancing its agenda and gaining supporters through aggressive appeals within the constitutional order and by keeping the more violent sectors under control. Moreover, the current political climate is not conducive to open extra-parliamentary ‘street fighting’ where the new Right would be easily crushed. Most right-wing strategists believe the current context is conducive to the accumulation of forces via peaceful methods.

Conditions Facilitating the Growth of the Right

There are several structural factors contributing to the growth of the new Right in Europe:

First and foremost, there is a clear decline of democratic power and institutions resulting from the centralization of executive – legislative power in the hands of a self-appointed elite in Brussels. The new Right argues effectively that the European Union has become a profoundly authoritarian political institution disenfranchising voters and imposing harsh austerity programs without a popular mandate.

Secondly, national interests have been subordinated to benefit the financial elite identified as responsible for the harsh policies that have undermined living standards and devastated local industries. The new Right counterpoises ‘the nation’ to the Brussels ‘Troika’ – the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and the European Commission.

Thirdly, ‘liberalization’ has eroded local industries and undermined communities and protective labor legislation. The Right denounces liberal immigration policies, which permit the large-scale inflow of cheap workers at a time of depression level unemployment. The crisis of capitalism combined with the large force of cheap immigrant labor forms the material basis for right-wing appeals to workers, especially those in precarious jobs or unemployed.

Right: Contradictions and the Double Discourse

The Right, while criticizing the neo-liberal state for unemployment, focuses mainly on the immigrants competing with nationals in the labor market rather than on the capitalists whose investment decisions determine levels of employment and unemployment.

The Right attacks the authoritarian nature of the European Union, but its own structures, ideology and history pre-figure a repressive state.

The Right rightly proposes to end foreign elite control of the economy, but its own vision of a ‘national state’, especially one linked to NATO, multi-national corporations and imperial wars, will provide no basis for ‘rebuilding the national economy’.

The Right speaks to the needs of the dispossessed and the need to ‘end austerity’ but it eschews the only effective mechanism for countering inequalities – class organization and class struggle. Its vision of the ‘collaboration between productive capital and labor’ is contradicted by the aggressive capitalist offensive to cut wages, social services, pensions and working conditions. The new Right targets immigrants as the cause of unemployment while obscuring the role of the capitalists who hire and fire, invest abroad, relocate firms and introduce technology to replace labor.

They focus the workers’ anger ‘downward’ against immigrants, instead of ‘upward’ toward the owners of the means of production, finance and distribution who ultimately manipulate the labor market.

In the meantime the radical Left’s mindless defense of unlimited immigration in the name of an abstract notion of ‘international workers solidarity’ exposes their arrogant liberal bias, as though they had never consulted real workers who have to compete with immigrants for scarce jobs under increasingly unfavorable conditions.

The radical Left, under the banner of ‘international solidarity’, has ignored the historical fact that ‘internationalism’ must be built on the strong national foundation of organized, employed workers.

The Left has allowed the new Right to exploit and manipulate powerful righteous nationalist causes. The radical Left has counterpoised ‘nationalism’ to socialism, rather than seeing them as intertwined, especially in the present context of an imperialist-dominated European Union.

The fight for national independence, the break-up of the European Union, is essential to the struggle for democracy and the deepening of the class struggle for jobs and social welfare. The class struggle is more powerful and effective on the familiar national terrain – rather than confronting distant overseers in Brussels.

The notion among many radical Left leaders to ‘remake’ the EU into a ‘Social Europe’, the idea that the EU could be converted into a ‘European Union of Socialist States’ simply prolongs the suffering of the workers and the subordination of nations to the non-elected bankers who run the EU. No one seriously believes that buying stocks in Deutsch Bank and joining its annual stockholders meetings would allow workers to ‘transform’ it into a ‘People’s Bank’. Yet the ‘Bank of the Banks’, the ‘Troika’, made up of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF, set all major policies for each member state of the European Union. Un-rectified and remaining captive of the ‘Euro-metaphysic’, the Left has abdicated its role in advancing the class struggle through the rebirth of the national struggle against the EU oligarchs.

Results and Perspectives

The Right is advancing rapidly, even if unevenly across Europe. Its support is not ephemeral but stable and cumulative at least in the medium run. The causes are ‘structural’ and result from the new Right’s ability to exploit the socio-economic crisis of the neo-liberal right governments and to denounce authoritarian and anti-national policies of the unelected EU oligarchy.

The new Right’s strength is in ‘opposition’. Their protests resonate while they are distant from the command centers of the capitalist economy and state.

Are they capable of moving from protest to power? Shared power with the neo-liberals will obviously dilute and disaggregate their current social base.

The contradictions will deepen as the new Right moves from positions of ‘opposition’ to sharing power with the neo-liberal Right. The massive roundups and deportation of immigrant workers is not going to change capitalist employment policies or restore social services or improve living standards. Promoting ‘national’ capital over foreign through some corporatist union of capital and labor will not reduce class conflict. It is totally unrealistic to imagine ‘national’ capital rejecting its foreign partners in the interest of labor.

The divisions within the ‘nationalist Right’, between the overtly fascist and electoral corporatist sectors, will intensify. The accommodation with ‘national’ capital, democratic procedures and social inequalities will likely open the door to a new wave of class conflict which will expose the sham radicalism of the ‘nationalist’ right. A committed Left, embedded in the national terrain, proud of its national and class traditions, and capable of unifying workers across ethnic and religious ‘identities’ can regain supporters and re-emerge as the real alternative to the two faces of the Right – the neo-liberal and the ‘nationalist’ new Right. The prolonged economic crisis, declining living standards, unemployment and personal insecurity propelling rise of the nationalist Right can also lead to the emergence of a Left deeply linked to national, class and community realities. The neo-liberals have no solutions to offer for the disasters and problems of their own making; the nationalists of the new Right have the wrong -reactionary – answer. Does the Left have the solution? Only by overthrowing the despotic imperial rule of Brussels can they begin to address the national-class issues.

Post-script and final observations:

In the absence of a Left alternative, the working class voters have opted for two alternatives: Massive voter abstention and strikes. In the recent EU election, 60% of the French electorate abstained, with abstention approaching 80% in working class neighborhoods. This pattern was repeated or even exceeded throughout the EU – hardly a mandate for the EU or for the ‘new Right’. In the weeks and days before the vote, workers took to the streets. There were massive strikes of civil servants and shipyard workers, as well as workers from other sectors and mass demonstrations by the unemployed and popular classes opposing EU-imposed ‘austerity’ cuts in social services, health, education, pensions, factory closures and mass lay-offs. Widespread voter abstention and street demonstrations point to a huge proportion of the population rejecting both the neo-Liberal Right of the ‘Troika’ as well as the ‘new Right’.

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About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Capitalists, Technocrats and Fanatics: The Ascent of a New Power Bloc

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Introduction: The sweeping electoral victory of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in India is the latest expression of the world-wide advance of a new power bloc which promises to impose a New World Order harnessing ethno-religious fanaticism and narrowly trained technocrats to capitalist absolutism.

The far-right is no longer at the margins of western political discourse. It is center-stage. It is no longer dependent on contributions by local militants; it receives financing from the biggest global corporations. It is no longer dismissed by the mass media. It receives feature coverage, highlighting its ‘dynamic and transformative’ leadership.

Today capitalists everywhere confront great uncertainty, as markets crash and endemic corruption at the highest levels erode competitive markets. Throughout the world, large majorities of the labor force question, challenge and resist the massive transfers of public wealth to an ever reduced oligarchy. Electoral politics no longer define the context for political opposition.

Capitalism, neither in theory nor practice, advances through reason and prosperity. It relies on executive fiats, media manipulation and arbitrary police state intrusions. It increasingly relies on death squads dubbed “Special Forces” and a ‘reserve army’ of para-military fanatics.

The new power bloc is the merger of big business, the wealthy professional classes, upwardly mobile, elite trained technocrats and cadres of ethno-religious fanatics who mobilize the masses.

Capitalism and imperialism advances by uprooting millions, destroying local communities and economies, undermining local trade and production, exploiting labor and repressing social solidarity. Everywhere it erodes community and class solidarity.

Ethno-Religious Fanatics and Elite Technocrats

Today capitalism depends on two seemingly disparate forces. The irrational appeal of ethno-religious supremacists and narrowly trained elite technocrats to advance the rule of capital. Ethno-religious fanatics seek to promote bonds between the corporate-warlord elite and the masses, by appealing to their ‘common’ religious ethnic identities.

The technocrats serve the elite by developing the information systems, formulating the images and messages deceiving and manipulating the masses and designing their economic programs.

The political leaders meet with the corporate elite and warlords to set the political-economic agenda, deciding when to rely on the technocrats and when to moderate or unleash the ethno-religious fanatics.

Imperialism operates via the marriage of science and ethno-religious fanaticism- and both are harnessed to capitalist domination and exploitation.

India: Billionaires, Hindu Fascists and IT “Savants”

The election of Narendra Modi, leader of the BJP and long-time member of the Hindu fascist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) para-military organization was based on three essential components:

(1) Multi-billion rupee funding from corporate India at home and abroad.

(2) Thousands of upwardly mobile IT technocrats mounting a massive propaganda campaign.

(3) Hundreds of thousands of RSS activists spreading the “Hindutva” racist doctrine among millions of villagers.

The Modi regime promises his capitalist backers that he will “open India”– namely end the land reserves of the tribes, convert farmland to industrial parks, deregulate labor and environmental controls.

To the Brahmin elite he promises to end compensatory quotas for lower castes, the untouchables, the minorities and Muslims. For the Hindu fascists he promises more temples. For foreign capitalists he promises entry into all formerly protected economic sectors. For the US, Modi promises closer working relations against China, Russia and Iran… The BJP’s ethno-religious Hindu fanaticism resonates with Israel’s notion of a “pure”Jewish state. Modi and Netanyahu have longstanding ties and promise close working relations based on similar ethno-racist doctrines.

Turkey: The Transition to Islamic-Capitalist Authoritarianism

Turkey under the rule of Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party has moved decisively toward one-man rule: linking Islam to big capital and police state repression. Erdogan’s ‘triple alliance’ is intent on unleashing mega-capitalist projects, based on the privatization of public spaces and the dispossession of popular neighborhoods. He opened the door to unregulated privatization of mines, communications, banks – leading to exponential growth of profits and the decline of employment security and a rising toll of worker deaths. Erdogan has shed the mask of ‘moderate Islam’ and embraced the jihadist mercenaries invading Syria and legislation expanding religious prerogatives in secular life. Erdogan has launched massive purges of journalists, public officials, civil servants, judges and military officers. He has replaced them with ‘party loyalists’; Erdogan fanatics!

Erdogan has recruited a small army of technocrats who design his mega projects and provide the political infrastructure and programs for his electoral campaigns. Technocrats provide a development agenda that accommodates the foreign and domestic crony corporate elite.

The Anatolian Islamists, small and medium provincial business elite, form the mass base – mobilizing voters, by appealing to chauvinist and ethnocentric beliefs. Erdogan’s repressive, Islamist, capitalist regime’s embrace of the “free market” has been sharply challenged especially in light of the worst mining massacre in Turkish history: the killing of over 300 miners due to corporate negligence and regime complicity. Class polarization threatens the advance of Turkish fascism.

Israel and the “Jewish State”: Billionaires , Ethno-Religious Fanatics and Technocrats

Israel, according to its influential promoters in the US, is a ‘model democracy’. The public pronouncements and the actions of its leaders thoroughly refute that notion. The driving force of Israeli politics is the idea of dispossessing and expelling all Palestinians and converting Israel into a ‘pure’ Jewish state. For decades Israel, funded and colonized by the diaspora, have violently seized Palestinian lands, dispossessed millions and are in the process of Judaizing what remains of the remnant in the “Occupied Territories”.

The Israeli economy is dominated by billionaires. Its “society” is permeated by a highly militarized state. Its highly educated technocrats serve the military-industrial and ethno-religious elite. Big business shares power with both.

High tech Israeli’s apply their knowledge to furthering the high growth, military industrial complex. Medical specialists participate in testing the endurance of Palestinian prisoners undergoing torture (“interrogation”). Highly trained psychologists engage in psych-warfare to gain collaborators among vulnerable Palestinian families. Economists and political scientists, with advanced degrees from prestigious US and British universities (and ‘dual citizenship’) formulate policies furthering the land grabs of neo-fascist settlers. Israel’s best known novelist, Amos Oz condemned the neo-fascist settlers who defecate on the embers of burnt-out mosques.

Billionaire real estate moguls bid up house prices and rents “forcing” many “progressive” Israelies, who occasionally protest, to take the easy road of moving into apartments built on land illegally and violently seized from dispossessed Palestinians. ‘Progressives’ join neo-fascist vigilantes in common colonial settlements. Prestigious urbanologists further the goals of crude ethno-racist political leaders by designing new housing in Occupied Lands. Prominent social scientists trade on their US education to promote Mid-East wars designed by vulgar warlords. Building the Euro American Empire : Riff-Raff of the World Unite!

Empire building is a dirty business. And while the political leaders directing it, feign respectability and are adept at rolling out the moral platitudes and high purposes, the ‘combatants’ they employ are a most unsavory lot of armed thugs, journalistic verbal assassins and highly respected international jurists who prey on victims and exonerate imperial criminals.

In recent years Euro-American warlords have employed “the scum of the slaughterhouse” to destroy political adversaries in Libya, Syria and the Ukraine.

In Libya lacking any semblance of a respectable middle-class democratic proxy, the Euro-American empire builders armed and financed murderous tribal bands, notorious jihadist terrorists, contrabandist groups, arms and drug smugglers. The Euro-Americans counted on a pocketful of educated stooges holed up in London to subdue the thugs, privatize Libya’s oil fields and convert the country into a recruiting ground and launch pad for exporting armed mercenaries for other imperial missions.

The Libyan riff-raff were not satisfied with a paycheck and facile dismissal: they murdered their US paymaster, chased the technocrats back to Europe and set-up rival fiefdoms. Gadhafi was murdered, but so went Libya as a modern viable state. The arranged marriage of Euro-American empire builders, western educated technocrats and the armed riff-raff was never consummated. In the end the entire imperial venture ended up as a petty squabble in the American Congress over who was responsible for the murder of the US Ambassador in Benghazi.

The Euro-American-Saudi proxy war against Syria follows the Libyan script. Thousands of Islamic fundamentalists are financed, armed, trained and transported from bases in Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Libya to violently overthrow the Bashar Assad government in Syria. The world’s most retrograde fundamentalists travel to the Euro-American training bases in Jordan and Turkey and then proceed to invade Syria, seizing towns, executing thousands of alleged ‘regime loyalists’ and planting car bombs in densely populated city centers.

The fundamentalist influx soon overwhelmed the London based liberals and their armed groups.

The jihadist terrorists fragmented into warring groups fighting over the Syrian oil fields. Hundreds were killed and thousands fled to Government controlled regions. Euro-US strategists, having lost their original liberal mercenaries, turned toward one or another fundamentalist groups. No longer in control of the ‘politics’ of the terrorists, Euro-US strategists sought to inflect the maximum destruction on Syrian society. Rejecting a negotiated settlement, the Euro-US strategists turned their backs on the internal political opposition challenging Assad via presidential elections.

In the Ukraine, the Euro-Americans backed a junta of servile neo-liberal technocrats, oligarchical kleptocrats and neo-Nazis, dubbed Svoboda and the Right Sector. The latter were the “shock troops” to overthrow the elected government, massacre the federalist democrats in Odessa and the eastern Ukraine, and back the junta appointed oligarchs serving as “governors”.

The entire western mass media white-washed the savage assaults carried out by the neo-Nazis in propping up the Kiev junta. The powerful presence of the neo-fascists in key ministries, their strategic role as front line fighters attacking eastern cities controlled by pro-democracy militants, establishes them as central actors in converting the Ukraine into a military outpost of NATO. Euro-America Empire Building and the Role of Riff-Raff

Everywhere the Euro-American imperialists choose to expand – they rely on the ‘scum of the earth’: tribal gangs in Libya, fundamentalist terrorists in Syria, neo-Nazis in the Ukraine.

Is it by choice or necessity? Clearly few consequential democrats would lend themselves to the predatory and destructive assaults on existing regimes which Euro-US strategists design. In the course of imperial wars, the local producers, workers, ordinary citizens would “self-destroy”, whatever the outcome. Hence the empire builders look toward ‘marginal groups’, those with no stake in society or economy. Those alienated from any primary or secondary groups. Footloose fundamentalists fit that bill – provided they are paid, armed and allowed to carry their own ideological baggage. Neo-Nazis hostile to democracy have no qualms about serving empire builders who share their ideological hostility to democrats, socialists, federalists and culturally ‘diverse’ societies and states. So they are targeted for recruitment by the empire builders.

The riff-raff consider themselves ‘strategic allies’ of the Euro-American empire builders. The latter, however, have no strategic allies – only strategic interests. Their tactical alliances with the riff-raff endure until they secure control over the state and eliminate their adversaries. Then the imperialist seek to demote, co-opt, marginalize or eliminate their ‘inconvenient’ riff-raff allies. The falling out comes about when the fundamentalists and neo-Nazis seek to restrict capital, especially foreign capital and impose restrictions on imperial control over resources and territory. At first the empire builders seek ‘opportunists’ among the riff-raff, those willing to sacrifice their ‘ideals’ for money and office. Those who refuse are relegated to secondary positions distant from strategic decision-making or to remote outposts. Those who resist are assassinated or jailed. The disposal of the riff-raff serves the empire on two counts. It provides the client regime with a fig leaf of respectability and disarms western critics targeting the extremist component of the junta.

The riff-raff, however, with arms, fighting experience and financing, in the course of struggle, gains confidence in its own power. They do not easily submit to Euro-US strategies. They also have ‘strategic plans’ of their own, in which they seek political power to further their ideological agenda and enrich their followers.

The riff-raff, want to ‘transition’ from shock troops of empire into rulers in their own right. Hence the assaults on the US embassy in Libya, the assassination of Euro-American proxies in Syria, Right Sector riots against the Kiev junta.

Conclusion

A new power bloc is emerging on a global scale. It is already flexing its muscles. It has come to power in India, Turkey, Ukraine and Israel. It brings together big business, technocrats and ethno-religious fascists. They promote unrestrained capitalist expansion in association with Euro-American imperialism.

Scientists, economists, and IT specialists design the programs and plans to realize the profits of local and foreign capitalists. The ethno-fascists mobilize the ‘masses’ to attack minorities and class organizations threatening high rates of returns.

The Euro-Americans contribute to this ‘new power bloc’ by promoting their own ‘troika’ made up of ‘neo-liberal clients’, fundamentalists and neo-Nazis to overthrow nationalist adversaries. The advance of imperialism and capitalism in the 21st century is based on the harnessing of the most advanced technology and up-to-date media outlets with the most retrograde political and social leaders and ideologies.

source

________________________________________________________________

About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Ε.ΠΑ.Μ. – ΕΥΡΩΕΚΛΟΓΕΣ 2014

Για να πετύχουμε τον στόχο των αγώνων των προγόνων μας το 1821, των παπούδων μας και των πατεράδων μας το 1940 – 1944, και των αδελφών μας το 1973, και για να μην μας ξαναβάλουν οι μεγάλες δυνάμεις με τους ντόπιους συνεργάτες τους στο δράμα ενούς νέου εμφυλιου πολέμου η κάτω από μια νέα φασιστική χούντα. Το ΕΠΑΜ είναι το μόνο κινημα στην Ελλάδα που είναι δημοκρατικό και πατριωτικό, και που θέλει να έχει ο ίδιος ο λαός την διακυβέρνηση της χώρας στα χέρια του και όχι να τον αντιπροσωπεύουν κλέφτες, προδότες και δοσίλογοι. Το ΕΠΑΜ είναι το μόνο κινημα στην Ελλάδα που δείνει τα κατάληλα και απαραίτητα αντίδοτα για τα πνευματικά, πολιτιστικά, συναισθηματικά, ψυχολογικά και διανοητικά δηλητήρια που μας πότιζαν για πάρα πολλά χρόνια. Ελα μαζί μας λοιπόν να σώσουμε την Ελλάδα και να απελευθερώσουμε τον λαό μας!

Συμπατριώτη αδελφέ μου, ήρθε η ώρα να δείξεις τη ποιότητα σου!

Κοσμάς Λουμάκης

(ATHENIANVOICE)

Φιλοξενούμενος της ΕΚΠΟΜΠΗΣ ΑΕ ο καθηγητής Πολιτικής Επιστήμης και πρώην Πρύτανης του Πάντειου Πανεπιστημίου κ.Γιώργος Κοντογιώργης.
http://www.epamhellas.gr/
http://www.facebook.com/metopo

Η εκδήλωση για την παρουσίαση των 42 υποψηφίων ευρωβουλευτών του ΕΠΑΜ τα είχε όλα… Κόσμο, παλμό και πολιτικά συνθήματα. Πρώτα απ’ όλα, όμως, έστελνε μήνυμα σε Ελλάδα και Ευρώπη.

“Τραγουδώντας και πολεμώντας, έλεγαν οι παλιοί, ότι πάνε στον πόλεμο”, ανέφερε ο Δημήτρης Καζάκης, σημειώνοντας πως “ο αγώνας είναι δύσκολος. Έχουμε μεγάλες απώλειες από το βάρος της καθημερινότητας, της ζωής, αλλά δεν το βάζουμε κάτω. Ο αγώνας είναι πολύ μεγάλος, όταν οι κυβερνώντες θέλουν να σε κάνουν δούλο”.

Η ομιλία και η συζήτηση με το κοινό του γ.γ. του ΕΠΑΜ Δημήτρη Καζάκη στην Θεσσαλονίκη (14 Μαΐου 2014, πλ. Ναυαρίνου), στην κεντρική προεκλογική συγκέντρωση του ΕΠΑΜ Θεσσαλονίκης για τις ευρωεκλογές.
Στην έναρξη της εκδήλωσης απηύθυναν χαιρετισμό οι υποψήφιοι ευρωβουλευτές του ΕΠΑΜ Αλεξάνδρα Γεροντάκη, Αντώνης Παπαντωνίου, Ζωγραφιά Δόγου και Δημήτρης Κυπριώτης.
πηγη βιντεο : ΕΠΑΜ ΘΕΣΣΑΛΟΝΙΚΗΣ

Συζήτηση στο στούντιο της ΔΕΛΤΑ τηλεόρασης (Αλεξανδρούπολη) όπου φιλοξένησε το γ.γ. και υποψήφιο ευρωβουλευτή του Ε.ΠΑ.Μ. Δημήτρη Καζάκη στις 17 Μαΐου 2014.
Πηγή βίντεο: http://www.deltatv.gr/

Ε.Πα.Μ Επίσημη παρουσίαση των υποψηφίων ευρωβουλευτών Κρήτης με κεντρικό ομιλητή τον Γ.Γ Δημητρη Καζάκη

Oμιλία του γ.γ. του Ε.ΠΑ.Μ. και υποψήφιου ευρωβουλευτή Δημήτρη Καζάκη στο Εργατικό Κέντρο Χανίων στις 13/5/14 και παρουσίαση όλων των υποψήφιων ευρωβουλευτών του Ε.ΠΑ.Μ. της Κρήτης.
ΠΥΡΗΝΑΣ ΧΑΝΙΩΝ

Κεντρική προεκλογική εκδήλωση του ΕΠΑΜ Αιγίου, την Κυριακή 11 Μαΐου 2014. Συμμετείχαν οι υποψήφιοι ευρωβουλευτές Λεωνίδας Χρυσανθόπουλος, Αλεξάνδρα Λαδικού, Αντώνης Παπαντωνίου, Γιάννης Σιδέρης, Γιάννα Σιόβα και Γιάννης Αλεξανδρόπουλος.

Απόσπασμα από την κεντρική ομιλία των υποψηφίων ευρωβουλευτών του Ε.ΠΑ.Μ. στο εργατικό κέντρο Κορίνθου την Τετάρτη 7 Μαΐου 2014.

Εκδήλωση του ΕΠΑΜ στην πλ. Φλέμινγκ της Ηλιούπολης, ενόψει ευρωεκλόγων, στις 8 Μαΐου 2014
Ομιλητές :
Δημήτρης Καζάκης, γ.γ. ΕΠΑΜ και υποψήφιος ευρωβουλευτής
Γρηγόρης Πιερρουτσάκος, υποψήφιος ευρωβουλευτής
Καλλιρρόη Δραμιτίνου, υποψήφια ευρωβουλευτής
Δημήτρης Κυπριώτης, υποψήφιος ευρωβουλευτής
Γιάννης Αθανασιάδης
πηγη : ΕΠΑΜ Γλυφαδας-Ελληνικου

Παρουσίαση όλων των υποψήφιων ευρωβουλευτών του ΕΠΑΜ και επίσης όλα τα σχετικά βιντεάκια (210 βίντεο)

Δείτε αυτές τις δυο καταπληκτικές ταινίες ντοκιμαντέρ για το πως φτάσαμε ως εδώ και πως απελευθερωνόμαστε επιτέλους

“ΟΥΣΤ ΚΑΘΑΡΜΑΤΑ” και “ΟΥΣΤ – Η Κραυγή της Ελλάδας”

“Ως Έλληνας, δημοκράτης που σέβεται και τιμά τους αγώνες και τις θυσίες της οικογένειάς του και του λαού του, βλέπω αυτές τις δύο ταινίες σαν δύο απαραίτητα αντίδοτα για τα πνευματικά, πολιτιστικά, συναισθηματικά, ψυχολογικά και διανοητικά δηλητήρια που μας πότιζαν για πάρα πολλά χρόνια. Αυτές τις δύο ταινίες θα πρέπει να τις δουν σε κάθε ελληνικό σπίτι γιατί δεν ειναι μόνο πληροφόρηση, ενημέρωση και γνώση αλλά ειναι έμπνευση και κίνητρο για να σηκώσει ο Έλληνας επιτέλους το κεφάλι του και να απελευθερώσούμε την πατρίδα μας τόσο από της εγχώριες όσο και της ξένες ύαινες,.. μια για πάντα!”

Κοσμάς Λουμάκης

ATHENIANVOICE

(αν δεν μπορείτε να δείτε το βίντεο εδώ πατήστε το εικονίδιο του youtube)

Van Rompuy: If The Public Doesn’t Want EU Expansion, ‘We Do It Anyway’

In a crass and ill-timed intervention, the unelected president of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy has warned Vladimir Putin that the EU intends ultimately to control every country on the western flank of Russia.

rumpypumpy

by M.E. Synon 1 May 2014

In an interview with De Standaard newspaper, Van Rompuy speaks about his “dreams” that all the Balkan states will join the EU. He calls it an “inspiring thought” that in the long term “the whole of European territory outside Russia” will be tied in some way to the EU.

He admits he does not know if there is public support for such a move, “But we do it anyway.”

Van Rompuy’s comments, released in the midst of the tensions which have followed moves by Brussels to put Ukraine on the path to EU membership, give credence to Putin’s fears that ultimately the EU intends to put its tanks on Russia’s lawn.

Building a common EU defence is one of the strategic priorities for the Brussels elite who are trying to build “a country called Europe.”

Most people in Britain are unaware of it, but a commitment by Britain and the other member states to common foreign, security and defence policies was written into the Maastricht Treaty of 1992.

In recent years the EU has deepened the integration of the military forces of member states with the framing of the Common Security and Defence Policy.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande are the leading voices for a common defence force for the EU.

In 2008, a report by a respected Dutch think tank warned that the EU is pursuing a secretive “military space policy.” It accused the EU of using the cover of the European Space Agency to develop technologies such as the Galileo satellite system for use by military as well as civilian. authorities

Last July, Martin Schulz, the German socialist President of the European Parliament who is now one of the top candidates to be the next president of the European Commission, said: “We need a headquarters for civil and military missions in Brussels and deployable troops.”

At the same time the European Commission proposed that it should “own and operate” its own surveillance drones.

Last December at a European Council meeting, member states agreed to “deepen defence cooperation.” At a press conference afterwards, David Cameron insisted Britain would block EU institutions from owning and operating their own military assets.

However, the fact is there is nothing Britain can do to stop a group of EU member states from creating their own “intergovernmental” defence force and asking the EU to administer it.

Now in this latest interview, Van Rompuy has said Brussels intends in effect to create an EU national border from the Arctic Circle to the Turkish border with Iraq.

This could threaten Russia’s historic, trade and political ties with Eastern Europe, so it is unlikely Russians will believe Van Rompuy when he insists the EU does not intend to create a “geopolitical shift.”

As long ago as 2007, José Manuel Barroso, the Portuguese former Maoist who is the president of the European Commission, said he liked to compare the EU “to the organisation of an empire.” He said “We have the dimension of an empire. I believe it is a great construction.”

Van Rompuy’s interview makes it clear that the EU elite intend for the empire to go right to the edge of the Russian Motherland.

In reply to Van Rompuy’s interview, a spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “Europe’s diversity means a one-size-fits-all Europe will not work. You cannot impose a federal, close-knit union on such a varied group of states. There is not the political will to do so.”

“Only 31 per cent of the people across the European Union have a positive view of the EU. Two-thirds believe their voice does not count in the EU. This is not the voice of people who think a ‘United States of Europe’ is the answer to their problems. You have to treat Europe like a network not like a bloc.”

UKIP deputy leader Paul Nuttall said Van Rompuy’s words “demonstrate the frightening expansionist mentality of federalist fanatics.” He said Van Rompuy “does show a rare glimpse of honesty when he admits that the EU’s desire to expand comes without any public approval.”

Source

And let us remember :

Multiple Ways Kleptocrats and Militarists Fleece Americans

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Introduction: American living standards are plunging and it’s not simply because they are paid less, work longer (or shorter hours) under highly stressful workplace conditions and pay a higher percentage of their income for health and pension coverage.

The ‘workplace’ is only one of several locations where American working people are experiencing a sharp decline in living standards. The new oligarchical Kleptocrats and political elites have elaborated new ways to fleece Americans. These include:

(1) Increased costs and declining quality of internet, cable and other communication systems.

(2) Intensive pervasive and perpetual surveillance by punitive espionage agencies eroding personal freedoms and violating the confidentiality of personal, political and business decisions affecting everyday life.

(3) Large scale, repeated financial swindles by the most active and influential private and publicly trading investment companies resulting in the loss of hundreds of billions of dollars in pensions and savings for tens of millions of middle and working class investors.

(4) Increases in taxes and charges, including sales taxes, social security deductions, medical co-payments and reductions in social services … This is a result of the government’s commitment to finance US corporate investments and bail-outs. Big business hoards their cash holdings abroad to avoid taxes on overseas profits. To pay dividends they borrow. The growth of corporate debt, concentrated in a few large corporations, holds the US taxpayer liable for any present or future collapse of the financial markets. This corporate-induced ‘hoarding of capital’ compromises present and future living standards. It plays a major role in the deterioration of employment, wages, social services and public infrastructure.

(5) The astronomical growth of state spending on wars of conquest, financial giveaways propping up right-wing dictatorships and building a vast network of global military bases, proxy wars and other empire building measures reduce living standards of Americans. By militarizing everyday life, citizens are subject to mindless repetitive propaganda designed to lower their mental capacity. State terror-mongering propagandists in the mass media distract citizens from their declining living standards. Political elites bully citizens to continue ‘sacrificing’ basic living standards. Video games reproduce the worlds of war and terror, reflecting the real world policies of the ruling class.

Video games allow Americans who know they no longer have influence on political decisions and whose living standards are in decline, to vicariously exercise power and realize favorable outcomes on their mobiles. Purchasing mobiles, video games and other gadgets enrich billionaires’— so-called “high tech” capitalists – and convert citizens into impoverished consumers. They inhabit a bubble of illusions and passivity in the face of growing economic inequalities and political-cultural impoverishment.

The Political Bases of Declining Living Standards

The case of Comcast, the communication monopoly’s seizure of internet, is illustrative of how politics and plunder converge. Comcast TWC, the largest communications company, presently will control 40% of the US broadband and one-third of the US cable television market. By controlling the internet, Comcast will monopolize the principal means of communication of most Americans. The Federal Communications Commissions (FCC), which is supposed to regulate the industry and prevent price gouging monopolies, is “dominated by senior former industry officials” (Financial Times, (FT) 4/14/, pg. 9). Almost every elected national politician from Obama down has received substantial campaign funds from Comcast. During Senate hearings on Comcast’s bid to monopolize the internet through the take-over of Time Warner Cable, Comcast CEO David Cohen smirked and brushed off the Senators puff-questions. FCC complicity, Senatorial whitewashing of the private monopoly, is only part of the story. The internet was developed largely by public funds as was Google’s search engine: the public sector took the risk and the private monopolists , in this case Comcast, harvest the profits.

Comcast charges Americans several times greater then what it costs to use the internet in Sweden, South Korea, Singapore and elsewhere. Yet, US average internet speed is as little as a tenth as fast as that in Japan. In other words the hundreds of millions of US citizens who rely on the internet spend more money for less internet quality in their work day and everyday life. Their work life is intensified, their free time is reduced and their living standards are diminished. With greater concentration of ownership, come greater inequalities in power and income, and a greater disparity of living standards. All of which is obscured by the main beneficiaries – the communication barons and their political cronies.

Declining Living Standards in the Era of the Police State

‘Living’ in the deepest and most intimate sense of the term, means the ability to share ideas, feelings and experiences with individuals, families, friends and citizens without the intrusive and pervasive presence of a punitive state apparatus. When a state spy apparatus intercepts, collects, files, analyzes and makes a police evaluation of citizen’s communications, scientists refer to it as a police-state. The gigantic growth of a police state and its permeation of civil society has dramatically changed for the worse the fundamental bases of inter-personal life and communications. Police state rule, has sharply deteriorated cultural, social, political and economic living conditions. The ‘standards’ for living have been harshly reduced. The ‘legal’, but arbitrary, executive prerogatives of the state have been enhanced. The parameters of the basic rights of citizens have shrunk. As police state expenditures grow and the subjects of surveillance increase, so do budgets and taxes.

Kleptocracy: The Highest Stage of Capitalism

Marx and Marxists for the greater part of the 20th century, focused on capital’s exploitation of labor and the resources of overseas colonies and neo-colonies. In the 21st century a new more dynamic and totally parasitic form of economy has emerged based in the dominant financial sector. Kleptocrats engaged in large-scale, perpetual financial swindles and the pillage of the public treasury greatly impoverish small investors, and the pension funds of employees and workers.

For the better part of two decades, major financial institutions have been engaged in systematic large scale swindles, involving the sale of fraudulent financial packets (dubbed ironically “securities”), profiteering based on insider trading and other illicit activity which is prejudicial to productive activity, investors, tax payers, salary, and wage workers.

Every major investment banks in the US and Europe has been repeatedly investigated, fined and rarely prosecuted. They pay a relatively light fine and return to criminal activity. Looking only at the mega-swindles, involving hundreds of billions of dollars, we would include Enron, the Information Tech “bubble” of the 1990’s to 2000, the Home Mortgage fraud, the Barron, Lehman and Bear Sterns scam. In the run-up to the 2008-9 financial crash , Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, Bank of America were part of the “pump and dump” of low grade home mortgage bonds and equities. The swindlers are recidivists and are so because of the complicity of top Government officials at every moment. State officials design the rules promoting Kleptocracy (deregulation), suspend safeguards, provide tax incentives, and eliminate risk via trillion dollar bailouts of the biggest investment kleptocrats when the swindlers cannibalize their assets and run out of new victims to swindle.

Under kleptocratic capitalism the apex of the system is occupied by the top fifty investment banks, hedge funds and speculators who ‘make markets’. They determine what ‘stocks or investment objects are targeted, to be pumped or dumped, at what rate and for what period of time. The entire activity of the kleptocratic elite has nothing to do with financing the ‘real economy’. Kleptocrats creates paper ‘values’ – paper assets at paper prices, for real victims and huge profits. The kleptocratic system operates like a chain. Kleptocratic speculators extract the savings and investments of a second tier of financial houses. They draw on real resources: savings, trust and pension funds. The second tier speculators are the ‘bag men’ for the dominant kleptocrats and they receive a minor share of the booty in exchange for conning the savings of producers. They write the prospectus to entice investment funds; they formulate the promise of lucrative returns. They send progress reports to clients in exchange for ‘commissions. They also ‘take the rap”, when the crises hits and bankruptcies, foreclosures and scams unfold.

The pension funds, the individual trusts and savings of workers and employees, resulting from decades of creating value in the real economy, forms the base of the pyramid. They have no influence on the political officials who promote, protect and bailout the kleptocrats. Under the kleptocratic elite ideology of “too big to fail”, the state eliminates all the risk for the klepto’s and imposes the losses on the second tier, who pass the losses on to the wage and salaried workers as taxpayers, via trillion dollar transfers from Treasury. Investors suffer via the loss of equity; workers via the loss of jobs, homes, income and social services. Given the vast chasm between the perpetual fraudulent transactions in the mega paper economy and the daily work routines at the bottom, there is great uncertainty, volatility, and insecurity in the work-life of the wage and salaried classes. The uncertainty and capriciousness of the ‘normal’ capitalist economic cycle, is vastly exacerbated by the turbulence caused by the mega-swindles, endless frauds and crooked trades, endemic to the kleptocratic stage of capital.

Kleptocrats and Militarists Together: They Shall Overcome

Just as kleptocrats rule the paper economy, political confidence men and women engage in imperial wars prejudicing the real economy. Imperial militarists extract wealth from the Treasury (the taxpayer) via perpetual political swindles. Imperial invasions and interventions of sovereign countries are ‘sold’ to the taxpayers as “wars on terror”; non-nuclear Iran is sold as a nuclear threat; the violent overthrow of the democratically elected Ukraine government by a pro Washington junta is sold as a “democratic transition”. Just as the kleptocracy’s “driving force” is repeated, large scale swindles, so the governing militarist elite’s “driving force” is the perpetual need to engage in warfare.

The ‘bridge’ between the kleptocrats and the militarists is the respectable financial press (Financial Times (FT), the Wall Street Journal(WSJ). They publicize and praise high level paper transactions (buy outs and mergers) and encourage imperial warfare everywhere and all the time. They editorialize in favor of wars which destroys lucrative trade and investment markets in the real economy because they are aligned with the kleptocrats linked to the paper economy. The Financial Times should change its name to the Military Times. The editors and columnists have supported wars destroying the Libyan, Iraq, Syrian and Ukrainian economies and back sanctions prejudicing trade with Iran. The financial press no longer promotes market relations of the real economy; it is embedded in the paper economy of the kleptos.

Kleptocratic activities have become ‘routinized’ and based on advanced technology and have created highly respected billionaires. Even as I write today (4/14/14) the FT reports that ‘insiders at some of the hottest private and publically traded web companies sold big personal stakes before the slump in stock companies’ (my emphasis) taking advantage of a bubble of their own creation (“pump”) to reap billions at the expense of small investors. Tell it to Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, and Sheryl Sandberg, CEO of Facebook, who sold at the pre-slump peak, prior to the tech bubble bursting

Domestic Corporate Debt and Overseas Corporate Tax Havens

According to Standards and Poor (S and P), the rating agency, “the biggest US companies have added significantly to their debts during the past three years, at the same time as corporate cash piles have increased” (FT 4/14/14). The total cash holding of the 1,100 companies rated by S and P rose by $204 billion to 1.23 trillion between 2010-13. However, during the same time span their gross debts grew fivefold, rising from $748 billion to $4 trillion. Their net debt (gross debt minus cash holdings) rose 24 percent to $2.78 trillion. By holding cash overseas, US corporations avoid domestic taxes – increasing fiscal pressures, the tax burden on domestic producers and workers, heightening the regressive nature of the tax system Secondly, by loading up on domestic debt, the corporate elite crowds out local borrowers. Piling up debt increases corporate vulnerability to bankruptcy if and when interest rates rise. The corporate elite evading taxes via overseas cash piles include Apple, Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Chevron, and Merck among others. All told the top 25 multi nationals account for 43 percent of the total debt (FT 4/14/14).

Hoarding profits overseas avoids taxes. High domestic indebtedness results from the need to pay dividends and inflate returns to big shareholders. In other words, corporate elites escape taxes and increase economic insecurity for domestic job holders, both of which contribute to a decline in the material and psychological dimensions of ‘living standards’.

Kleptocracy and Militarism: Declining Living Standards

The rise of a powerful kleptocratic economic elite which ‘interpenetrates’ and shares power with a militarist political elite have joined forces to pillage the productive economy and the US Treasury. Their powerful links are the main reason for heightening class inequalities, political and social insecurities. They have driven American society into a permanent state of crises and wars. Over the past quarter century, Americans have lived through two major economic crashes, prolonged periods of stagnation and declining income, three major wars and a multitude of overt and covert military operations – all of which have eroded living standards.

Military propaganda saturates the mass media and permeates all mass spectacles. Stock reports, dominate the economic news. Investment speculators and swindlers are presented as cultural heroes. The gap between elite opinion and interests and those of the majority of citizens widens.

This leads politicians to greater dependence on billionaire campaign funders. The electoral process is unabashedly and totally controlled by the economic oligarchy. The vast majority of Americans recognizes and publically admit their total lack of political influence on all public issues of interest including those privileging the kleptocrats and the warlords.

The deeply felt and pervasive malaise resulting from social impotence in vital spheres of life is the clearest expression of the decline of political living standards. The shrinking of public involvement, the narrow focus of isolated individuals manipulating computerized gadgets , the replacement of face to face public engagement by impersonal electronic communications, are an expression of the decline of social living standards. The rise of ethno-religious chauvinism among klepto-elites is matched by the political warlords’ reliance on systematic deception and espionage of American citizens. Warlords and kleptocrats are enclosed in privileged living enclaves, including the private appropriation of former public spaces, but their intrusion into private communications define the diminished world of everyday life for the most Americans. Life expectancy may have increased but human life has decreased, drastically, over the past quarter of a century.

Conclusion

Blood and gore does not drip off the Saville suited clever inside trader. They never see or hear their victims, nor do they have an interest in them, except to fleece them collectively and anonymously.

America is ruled by a division of labor. The financial speculators, corporate tax evaders, investment bankers – the kleptocratic ruling class– pillage the treasury and productive economy. Their political counterparts manipulate, distract and police their exploited victims – to ensure that they submit or are intimidated if they protest.

When they political elites come up short, there are the new “opiums of the people’ videos, painkillers, terror threats, entertainment and sports spectacles.

But citizens are restless– as living standards continue to decline. Nobody believes in bailing out speculators because they are ‘too big to fail”. Nobody trusts the political leaders who lied their way to twelve year wars, adding others along the way. No one follows media pundit extremists in defense of kleptocrats and warlords. Passive resistance is widespread because it is clear to most Americans that living standards are in a free fall. Time awaits a popular backlash. Will it happen in our lifetime?

source

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About James Petras

He is the author of more than 62 books published in 29 languages, and over 600 articles in professional journals, including the American Sociological Review, British Journal of Sociology, Social Research, and Journal of Peasant Studies. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Partisan Review, TempsModerne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet.

His publishers have included Random House, John Wiley, Westview, Routledge, Macmillan, Verso, Zed Books and Pluto Books. He is winner of the Career of Distinguished Service Award from the American Sociological Association’s Marxist Sociology Section, the Robert Kenny Award for Best Book, 2002, and the Best Dissertation, Western Political Science Association in 1968. His most recent titles include Unmasking Globalization: Imperialism of the Twenty-First Century (2001); co-author The Dynamics of Social Change in Latin America (2000), System in Crisis (2003), co-author Social Movements and State Power (2003), co-author Empire With Imperialism (2005), co-author)Multinationals on Trial (2006).

He has a long history of commitment to social justice, working in particular with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for 11 years. In 1973-76 he was a member of the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Repression in Latin America. He writes a monthly column for the Mexican newspaper, La Jornada, and previously, for the Spanish daily, El Mundo. He received his B.A. from Boston University and Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

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A WARNING TO UKRAINE – Greece Confronts EU-Imposed Humanitarian Catastrophe

by Dean Andromidas

Why would anyone want to join the European Union? The only sane reason to join an association of nations would be to enjoy expanded economic benefits and democratic rights. Well, the EU offers neither. It is not only its moribund economy, with high unemployment, collapsing living standards, etc., but it is now implementing a policy of mass murder. The most obvious case is Greece, where the EU has turned a debt crisis into a humanitarian catastrophe. In 2010, Greece had a debt to gross domestic product ratio of 125%. The EU bureaucrats declared this to be unsustainable, and Greece was forced into a bailout. At the end of the third quarter 2013, that ratio had risen to 183%. The government’s gross debt stands at EU339.6 billion. At least EU270 billion is now held by foreigners. Between the first quarter of 2008, and the third quarter of 2013, it has paid EU67 billion in interest alone.

The over EU200 billion bailout has exclusively gone to pay off creditors, and in the process, created ever-expanding new debt. Despite the widely held belief that German taxpayers will foot the bill for the bailout, the fact is that the individual countries of the euro group issue a guarantee for the bonds that are floated by the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), the bailout fund. The bonds are bought by banks and other institutions, and the Greek government pays off the bonds. Only if there is a default will the non-Greek taxpayers lose. For the banks, such as Deutsche Bank, the bonds are all but free, since once purchased, the bank goes to the European Central Bank (ECB) and receives new liquidity. This arrangement if great for the banks, but lethal for the people of Greece. Since signing the bailout agreement and implementing its memoranda, Greece has been put under the tutelage of the infamous Troika of experts, or more precisely debt collectors, from the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund. Their policy has destroyed the economy, and is killing off the population by creating a humanitarian catastrophe. Some of the evidence:

• Official Greek unemployment has increased from an average of around 10% to 28%, but in reality, it is closer to 50%. Youth unemployment is an impossible 65%. Of the officially registered unemployed, only 16% are receiving any unemployment benefits. Nominal and real wages have been reduced respectively by 23% and 27.8%.

• One-third of the population lives below the poverty line. While no hard figures exist, the number of Greeks who have left the country seeking work is between 500,000 and 1 million. These are not the poor peasants of the 1950s and 1960s, but highly educated young people—doctors, engineers, academics, and scientists— the future of the country.

• The balance of trade has improved only because of a collapse of imports, while exports increased only marginally. In fact, there has been no real increase in exports since the nominal increase, given in euros, represents the petroleum products from the country’s refineries. There was no increase in the volume of petroleum exports, but only an increase in price. In point of fact, exports to the EU continue to decline. In the 1990s, 61% of Greek exports went to the EU; in 2012, the figure was 29.8%. The entire economy has shrunk by more than 25%, the official figure.

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The Troika-run Greek Health Minister Adonis Georgiadis is denying lifesaving medical care to cancer sufferers, and others. Here Georgiadis (left) is confronted by an angry Greek audience in London, March 16, 2014.

• There is virtually no liquidity in the country. Despite that fact that banks get liquidity from the ECB for virtually nothing, retail interest rates are a usurious 8.3%, the highest since Greece joined the Eurozone.

• Greek banks are loaded with non-performing debts, while companies, including those in the tourist industry are being starved of credit.

The EU Flu Massacre of 2014

Mass murder is occurring in Greece as you reads these words. It is being done very efficiently by taking down the health system, on orders of the Troika. Use of the term “mass murder” is not rhetorical, as the following examples show. Look at the death toll during this year’s flu season. As of this writing, at least 110 people have died of influenza just in the last several weeks. This is not only the highest rate in Europe, but the second-highest absolute number. The Athens Medical Association (ISA) revealed on March 26 that by contrast, 155 people had died of flu in Spain, whose population is 46 million, four times that of Greece’s 11 million. In France, which has a population six times larger, 52 people died from the virus; while in Romania, which has twice as many citizens as Greece, and is officially the poorest country in the EU, just four people succumbed to the flu. There were also only four deaths in Sweden, which has a comparable population to Greece. Britain reported no deaths from the virus.

untitledccccMedical workers from social clinics and the main state hospital in Athens protest against cuts to health care, Jan. 31, 2014. Eight thousand doctors have been cut from the public health system.

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Under “normal” conditions, Greece would have had perhaps 25 flu deaths. The balance of 85 deaths must be viewed as
murder, since it is admitted by the government that it did not purchase enough flu vaccine, and did not conduct an annual fluvaccination campaign for the most vulnerable, a fact that the ISA rightfully termed “criminal.” In a statement, the Medical Association charged that the cause of the flu deaths was the lack of vaccinations, and noted that pharmacists had reported a shortage of flu jabs and doses supplied to health centers of the state insurance fund, EOPYY. “It is tragic and criminal that people are dying for a vaccine that costs EU6 each,” the statement said.

EU Promotes Fascists

It is not surprising that the Greek Health Minister, Adonis Georgiadis, is a well-known ideological fascist who was recruited into the ruling New Democracy Party from the right-wing Laos party. He is a publisher and book dealer. Among his favorite authors, whose books he sells, is Konstaninos Plevris, the number-one fascist ideologue in Greece. His son, Thanos Plevris, is also in the ruling party, and serves as legal advisor to the Health Minister. Georgiadis, under orders of his Troika masters, is implementing a policy that kills. The British medical journal, Lancet has published a study in which it reports that the Greek government and the Troika are in a state of “denial” over the catastrophic consequences of their policy. It’s worse than “denial”—it is intentional: Georgiadis, asked by the Washington Post about the fact that the massive cuts in health care left an alarming number of cancer sufferers with having to pay for their own medications and even surgeries which they cannot afford, replied that, while there is a special fund (only EU17 million!) for emergency aid for those without insurance, “Illnesses like cancer are not considered urgent, unless you are in the final stages.” While the exact number of deaths from cancer is not available, it is widely known that hundreds, if not thousands, of cancer patients have no access to medical insurance. And, it is not just cancers; the same conditions apply to those suffering from most serious diseases, while the severely handicapped have seen their benefits cut dramatically.

Unprecedented death rates have been accomplished, according to Lancet, through savage cuts in funding of health care. The report showed how uninsured cancer patients are left to pay for their own lifesaving treatment as a result of losing their social security coverage due to long-term unemployment. It reports that the health-care budget has been cut by 25% since 2009, and the number of uninsured has increased from 500,000 in 2008, to at least 2.3 million today. Greece now spends less on health care than any of the pre-2004 EU members. For example, the public hospital budget was cut by 26% between 2009 and 2011; in the last two years it has been cut even more. The budget for medicines was slashed from EU4.7 billion in 2010, to EU2.88 billion in 2012, and then to EU2 billion for 2014. Doctors at the country’s hospitals have not been paid for six months, prompting strikes throughout the hospital system. Mental-health care has been savagely cut. Funding for the sector was cut 20% between 2010 and 2011, and by a further 55% between 2011 and 2012. Cases of depression have risen by 250%; suicides, by 45% between 2007 and 2011. Cuts in mosquito spraying have led to the resurgence of malaria, which was virtually wiped out 40 years ago. Thousands of pregnant women no longer have access to health care. The result is infanticide by decree of the Troika: Poor nutrition and lack of medical checkups have contributed to infant deaths, which had previously births, according to figures from the Greek National School of Public Health.

Under the guidelines established by the Troika, Georgiadis has shut down major sections of the national health-insurance program. Under the previous program, general practitioners worked for the national health insurance company, while maintaining their private practice. This gave the patient the choice of keeping the same primary doctor, which is the only way a competent general health system works. This system was closed down, essentially overnight, and all 8,000 doctors dismissed. The new system involves general clinics where doctors are hired on contract for as little as one month. Its implementation has been so slow that most of the country is left without access to general health care. Not surprisingly, Georgiadis has become a hated figure in Greece, and enters public places with caution. His reputation followed him recently to a public event in which he was the keynote speaker at Imperial College in London, where Greek students and academic staff had made it clear before the Minister’s appearance that they opposed his invitation to speak there. “The Minister has repeatedly bullied doctors and medical staff on national television, putting the blame on them for the existing problems, while advertising the need for budget cuts,” they said in a statement. They added, “The rise of Mr. Georgiadis in Greek politics is a symptom of the authoritarian, far-right turn of the Greek government.”

The EU’s Lawlessness

While the European Union ideologues never stop criticizing countries for not failing to adhere to the “rule of law,” the reality is that the EU itself is the biggest violator of the law, even its own treaties. Jorgo Chatzimarkakis, Member of the European Parliament representing the Free Democratic Party of Germany, but of Greek descent, charged that the cuts in the Greek health-care system have set the country back decades. Speaking at the European Parliament in Brussels on March 5, Chatzimarkakis charged that what the EU allows the Troika to do in Greece goes against fundamental human rights. Slamming German Chancellor Angela Merkel and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, Chatzimarkakis said, “There are a lot of legal studies that tell us that the legal security of human rights, basic civil rights, are not given anymore. Mrs Merkel and Mr Barroso present to us another Greece, and not the real Greece.” The United People’s Front (EPAM), a new Greek political party calling for Greece to drop the euro and return to the drachma, detailed in its election program for the European Parliamentary elections how the Troika’s policies violate EU treaties. Am ong a long list of violations they include the following:

• Treaty on European Union: Article 2 on human dignity, freedom, democracy and human rights; Article 3 on peace and well-being; Articles 145-150 on employment and 151-166 on social policy.

• The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU: Article 1 on human dignity; Article 14 on the right to education; Article 17 on the right to property (people have had their property confiscated because they were unable to pay the dramatically higher taxes, especially the property tax); Article 26 on the rights of the elderly; Article 28 on the integrity of persons with disabilities; Article 34 on the right to social security and social assistance.

And of course, Article 35 on the right to health care. In addition to EPAM, the other opposition parties—Syriza, Independent Greeks, Drachma 5, and Plan B— are demanding the suspension of the Troika’s Memorandum, cancellation of the majority of the debt, a Glass-Steagall banking reform, and other emergency measures to deal with the humanitarian catastrophe. In addition, EPAM, Drachma 5, and Plan B are calling for returning to the drachma.

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Future Suspended – Το Μέλλον Ανεστάλη

in english

How does a global financial crisis permeate the spaces of the everyday in a city? Our final 35′ documentary film traces the multiple transformations of crisis-ridden Athenian public space and those who traverse it.

Future Suspended is divided in three sections. “Privatised” explores the legacy of mass privatisation projects that preceded the 2004 Olympics, placing them in the context of present day privatisation schemes. “Devalued” gazes at the ever-shrinking spaces of migrants in the city and the devaluation of their lives that comes as a result. “Militarised” shows how, in face of the crisis, this devaluation turns into a generalised condition.

Through its cinematic traversal of today’s Athens, “Future Suspended” traces the rise of the authoritarian-financial complex and how this shrinks public space in the city, fuelling social despair and anger in return.

Future Suspended is part of the research project at crisis-scape.net. The research team consists of Christos Filippidis, Antonis Vradis, Dimitris Dalakoglou, Ross Domoney and Jaya Klara Brekke. All music for Future Suspended was composed by Giorgos Triantafyllou.

This film is released under the Creative Commons BY-NC-ND licence.

Details here: creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.­­0/deed.en_GB

στα ελληνικα

Πώς διεισδύει η παγκόσμια οικονομική κρίση στους καθημερινούς χώρους της πόλης; Το τελικό μας ντοκυμαντέρ, διάρκειας 35 λεπτών, ιχνηλατεί τις πολλαπλές μεταμορφώσεις του Αθηναϊκού δημόσιου χώρου σήμερα.

Το ντοκυμαντέρ χωρίζεται σε τρία μέρη: το πρώτο μέρος, με τίτλο “Ιδιωτικοποίηση”, διερευνά τις συνδέσεις ανάμεσα στην ανάπτυξη που χαρακτήρισε την περίοδο της Ολυμπιάδας του 2004 και τα σύγχρονα προγράμματα ιδιωτικοποίησης που λαμβάνουν χώρα μέσα στο πλαίσιο της οικονομικής κρίσης. Το δεύτερο μέρος, με τίτλο “Υποτίμηση”, εξετάζει τους τρόπους με τους οποίους συρρικνώνονται, σήμερα, οι αστικοί χώροι για τους/τις μετανάστες/ριες, και την επακόλουθη υποτίμηση της ζωής τους. Το τελευταίο μέρος, με τίτλο “Στρατιωτικοποίηση”, καταδεικνύει πώς με αφετηρία την κρίση, η υποτίμηση μετατρέπεται σε μια γενικευμένη συνθήκη—πώς η άνοδος του οικονομικο-αυταρχικού συμπλέγματος συρρικνώνει το δημόσιο χώρο στην πόλη, τροφοδοτώντας ως αποτέλεσμα την κοινωνική απόγνωση και οργή.

Μέσω κινηματογραφική διάσχιση της σημερινής Αθήνας, “Το Μέλλον Ανεστάλη” παρακολουθεί την άνοδο του αυταρχικού-οικονομικό συγκρότηματος και πώς μεσο αυτό συρρικνώνεται ο δημόσιος χώρος στην πόλη, τροφοδοτώντας την κοινωνική απελπισία και θυμό σε αντάλλαγμα.

Η ταινία αυτή υπό την άδεια CreativeCommonsBY-NC-ND. Πληροφορίεςεδώ: creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.­­0/deed.en_GB

 

Defeating Fascism before it’s too Late

03.23.2014 :: Latin America

petras

Introduction: Captain Jose Guillen Araque, of the Venezuelan National Guard, recently gave President Maduro a book on the rise of Nazism, warning that “fascism has to be defeated before it’s too late”! In retaliation for his prophetic warning, the patriotic young captain was shot by a US-backed assassin on the streets of Marcay in the state of Aragua on March 16, 2014.

This raised the number of Venezuelan soldiers and police killed since the fascist uprising to 6. The total killed is 33. The killing of a prominent, patriotic officer on a major street in a provincial capital is one more indication that the Venezuelan fascists are on the move, confident of their support from Washington and from a broad swath of the Venezuelan upper and middle class. They constitute a minority of the electorate and they have no illusions about taking power via constitutional and democratic means.

Captain Guillen Araque had stepped forward to remind President Maduro that the road to power for Nazi and fascist totalitarian groups has been littered with the corpses of well-meaning democrats and social democrats throughout contemporary history because of their failure to use their constitutional powers to crush the enemies of democracy.

The History of the rise of Fascism under Democracies

The term “fascist” in Venezuela is appropriately applied to the organized violent political groups currently engaged in mass terror in a campaign to destabilize and overthrow the democratically-elected Bolivarian government. Academic purist might argue that the Venezuelan fascists lack the racist and nationalist ideology of their German, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese predecessors. While true, it is also irrelevant. The Venezuelan brand of fascism is highly dependent on, and acts as a proxy for, US imperialism and their Colombian warlord allies. In one sense however, Venezuelan fascism’s racism is directed against its multiracial African-Amerindian Venezuelan working and peasant classes – as demonstrated by their vitriolic racism against the deceased President Hugo Chavez. The essential connection with earlier fascist movements is found in its (1) profound class hostility to the popular majority; (2) its visceral hatred of the Chavista Socialist Party, winner of 18 of the last 19 elections; (3) its resort to the armed seizure of power by a minority acting on behalf of the domestic and US imperial ruling classes; (4) its intention to destroy the very democratic institutions and procedures which it exploits in order to gain political space; (5) its targeting of working class institutions – communal councils, neighborhood associations, public health and dental clinics, public schools, transport, subsidized food stores, political meeting places, public credit unions, trade union organizations and peasant co-operatives; (6) and its support of capitalist banks, huge commercial landed estates and manufacturing firms.

In Germany, Italy, Spain, France and Chile, fascist movements also began as small terrorist groups, who gained the financial backing of the capitalist elite because of their violence against working class organizations and democratic institutions and recruited primarily among middle class university students, elite professionals (especially doctors) and active and retired higher military officers – united in their hostility to the democratic order.

Tragically and all too often, democratic leaders, operating within a constitutional government, tended to regard fascists as “just another party”, refusing or unwilling to crush the armed thugs, who combined terror in the streets with elections to gain state power. Constitutionalist democrats have failed or were unwilling to see the political, civilian arm of the Nazis as part and parcel of one organic totalitarian enemy; so they negotiated and debated endlessly with elite fascists who meanwhile destroyed the economy while terrorists pounded away at the political and social foundations of the democratic state. The democrats refused to send out their multi-million mass supporters to face the fascist hordes. Worse, they even prided themselves on jailing their own supporters, police and soldiers, who had been accused of using ‘excessive force’ in their confrontation with fascist street thugs. Thus the fascists easily moved from the streets to state power. The elected democrats were so concerned about criticism from the international and capitalist media, elite critics and self-appointed ‘human rights’ organizations, that they facilitated the takeover by fascists. The people’s right to the armed defense of their democracy had been subordinated to the pretext of upholding ‘democratic norms’ – norms that any bourgeois state under assault would have rejected! Constitutional democrats failed to recognize how drastically politics had changed. They were no longer dealing with a parliamentary opposition preparing for the next election; they were confronted with armed terrorists and saboteurs committed to armed struggle and the seizure of political power by any means – including violent coups-d’états.

In the lexicon of fascism, democratic conciliation is a weakness, a vulnerability and an open invitation to escalate violence; ‘peace and love’ and ‘human rights’ slogans are to be exploited; calls for ‘negotiations’ are preambles for surrender; and ‘agreements’ preludes to capitulation.

To the terrorists, the democratic politicians who warn about a “threat of fascism” while acting as if they were engaged in ‘parliamentary skirmishes’, become an open target for violent attack.

This is how the fascists came to power, in Germany, Italy and Chile, while the constitutionalist democrats, to the last, refused to arm the millions of organized workers who could have throttled the fascists and saved democracy and preserved their own lives.

Fascism in Venezuela: A Mortal Threat Today

The martyred hero, Captain Guillen Araque’s warning of an imminent fascist danger in Venezuela has a powerful substantive basis. While the overt terrorist violence ebbs and flows, the underlying structural basis of fascism in the economy and society remains intact. The subterranean organizations, financing and organizing the flow of arms to fascists-in-waiting remain in place.

The political leaders of the opposition are playing a duplicitous game, constantly moving from legal forms of protest to sub-rosa complicity with the armed terrorists. There is no doubt that in any fascist putsch, the political oligarchs will emerge as the real rulers – and will share power with the leaders of the fascist organizations. In the meantime, their ‘respectability’ provides political cover; their ‘human rights’ campaigns to free incarcerated street thugs and arsonists earn ‘international media support’ while serving as ‘intermediaries’ between the open US funding agencies, and the clandestine terrorist underground.

In measuring the scope and depth of the fascist danger, it is a mistake to simply count the number of bombers, arsonists and snipers, without including the logistical, back-up and peripheral support groups and institutional backers who sustain the overt actors,

To ‘defeat fascism before it is too late’, the government must realistically assess the resources, organization and operational code of the fascist command and reject the overly sanguine and ‘upbeat’ pronouncements emanating from some ministers, advisers and legislators.

First, the fascists are not simply a small band confined to pounding on pots and attacking municipal workers in the upper-middle class neighborhoods of Caracas for the benefit of the international and corporate media. The fascists are organized on a national basis; their members are active throughout the country.

They target vital institutions and infrastructure in numerous strategic locations.

Their strategy is centrally-controlled, their operations are decentralized.

The fascists are an organized force; their financing, arming and actions are planned. Their demonstrations are not ‘spontaneous’, locally-organized actions, responding to government ‘repression’ as depicted in the bourgeois and imperial media.

The fascists bring together different cross currents of violent groups, frequently combining ideologically-driven right-wing professionals, large-scale smuggling gangs and drug traffickers (especially in border regions), paramilitary groups, mercenaries and known felons. These are the ‘frontline fascists’, financed by major currency speculators, protected by elected local officials, offered ‘sanctuary’ by real estate investors and high-level university bureaucrats.

The fascists are both ‘nationals’ and internationals: They include locally paid thugs and students from upper-middle class families; paramilitary Colombian soldiers, professional mercenaries of all sorts, ‘contract killers’ from US ‘security’ outfits and clandestine US Special Forces Operatives; and fascist ‘internationalists’ recruited from Miami, Central America, Latin America and Europe.

The organized terrorists have two strategic sanctuaries for launching their violent operations – Bogota and Miami, where prominent political leaders, like ex-President Alvaro Uribe and US Congressional leaders provide political support.

The convergence of highly lucrative criminal economic activity and political terrorism presents a formidable double threat to the stability of the Venezuelan economy and the security of the state . . . Criminals and terrorists find a common home under the US political tent, designed to overthrow Venezuela’s democratic government and crush the Bolivarian revolution of the Venezuelan people.

The backward and forward inter-linkages between criminals and terrorists inside and outside the country, between Washington senior policymakers, street drug pushers and contraband ‘camels’, provides the international elite mouthpieces and the muscle for street fighters and snipers.

Terrorist targets are not chosen at ‘random’; they are not products of an enraged citizenry protesting social and economic inequities. The carefully chosen targets of terrorism are the strategic programs which sustain the democratic administration; first and foremost the mass social institutions forming the base of the government. This explains why terrorists bomb health clinics for the poor, public schools and centers for adult education in the barrios, the state subsidized food stores and the public transport system. These are part of the vast, popular welfare system set up by the Bolivarian government. They are key building blocks in securing massive voter support in 18 out of the last 19 elections and popular power in the streets and communities. By destroying the social welfare infrastructure, the terrorists hope to break the social bonds between people and government.

Terrorists target the legitimate national security system: Namely, the police, National Guard, judges, public prosecutors and other authorities in charge of safeguarding citizens. The assassinations, violent attacks and threats against public officials, the fire-bombing of public buildings and public transport are designed to create a climate of fear and to demonstrate that the state is weak and incapable of protecting the everyday life of its citizens. The terrorists want to project an image of ‘dual power’ by seizing public spaces and blocking normal commerce… and by ‘governing the streets through the gun’. Above all the terrorists want to demobilize and curtail popular counter-demonstrations by blocking streets and sniping at activists engaged in political activity in contested neighborhoods. The terrorists know they can count on their ‘legal’ political opposition allies to provide them with a mass base via public demonstrations, which can serve as a shield for violent assaults and a pretext for greater sabotage.

Conclusion

Fascism, namely armed terrorism directed at violently overthrowing a democratic government, is a real and immediate threat in Venezuela. The day-to-day, ups and downs of street fighting and arson are not an adequate measure of the threat. As we have noted, the in-depth structural and organizational supports underlying the rise and growth of fascism are far more important. The challenge in Venezuela is to cut-off the economic and political basis of fascism. Unfortunately, up until recently the government has been overly sensitive to hostile criticism from overseas and domestic elites who rush to defend fascists – in the name of “democratic freedom”. The government of Venezuela has enormous resources at its disposal to root out the fascist threat. Even if firm action causes an outcry from overseas liberal friends, most pro-democracy advocates believe it is incumbent upon the government to act against those opposition officials who continue to incite armed rebellion.

Most recently, there have been clear signs that the Venezuelan government, with its powerful democratic and constitutional mandate, is moving with awareness of the fascist danger and will act with determination to stamp it out in the streets and in the suites.

The National Assembly has voted to strip Congresswoman Corina Machado of her immunity as a deputy in the National Assembly so she can be prosecuted for inciting violence. The President of the National Assembly Diosdado Cabello has presented detailed documentary evidence of her role in organizing and promoting armed rebellion. Several opposition mayors, actively involved in promoting and protecting snipers, street thugs and arsonists, have been charged and arrested.

The majority of Venezuelans confronted by the rising tide of fascist violence support the punishment of these high officials engaged in or supporting sabotage. Without firm action, Venezuelan intelligence agencies as well as the average citizen agree that these ‘opposition’ politicos will continue to promote violence and provide sanctuary for paramilitary assassins.

The government has realized that they are engaged in a real war, planned by a centralized leadership and executed by decentralized operatives. Legislative leaders are coming to grips with the political psychology of fascism, which interprets Presidential offers of political conciliation and judicial leniency as weakness to be exploited by further violence.

The most significant advance toward stopping the fascist threat lies in the government’s recognition of the links between the parliamentary and business elite and the fascist terrorists: financial speculators, smugglers and big-time hoarders of food and other essential commodities are all part and parcel of the same fascist drive for power together with the terrorists who bomb public food markets and attack the trucks transporting food to the poor neighborhoods. One revolutionary worker said to me after a street skirmish: “Por la razon y la fuerza no pasaran!”(Through reason and force they will be defeated)…

source

Πώς φτάσαμε στο ξεπούλημα; Το χρονικό του προαναγγελθέντος θανάτου… της ελπίδας.

Λογότυπο ΕΠΑΜ

sf-013a11Α

[Σημείωση: Το άρθρο αυτό ζητήθηκε από την εφημερίδα Το Χωνί και παραδόθηκε προς δημοσίευση για το φύλλο της 15ης Φεβρουαρίου. Οι εκδότες της εφημερίδας με ενημέρωσαν ότι επειδή δεν διέθεταν τον απαραίτητο χώρο στο συγκεκριμένο φύλλο, θα το δημοσίευαν αυτούσιο στο ερχόμενο φύλλο της 22ας Φεβρουαρίου. Κάτι τέτοιο δεν συνέβη, προφανώς για λόγους πολιτικής σκοπιμότητας, κι έτσι το αναρτώ ως έχει.]

Καλά τα επινίκια. Καλές οι χαρές και τα πανηγύρια, αλλά αναρωτιέμαι. Αν πιστέψουμε τον Τσίπρα και τους ζητωκραγαύζοντες δικούς του, στην Ελλάδα ήδη από την Δευτέρα 26/1 ήρθε η δημοκρατία, ίσως και η λαοκρατία για την οποία αγωνιζόταν το ΕΑΜ. Αν βέβαια πάρουμε στα σοβαρά τα συνθήματα που συνόδευαν την κατάθεση λουλουδιών στο μνημείο των εκτελεσμένων στο σκοπευτήριο της Καισαριανής.

Με τη λιγούρα για εξούσια στο μάτι

Το κλίμα αυτό αποτύπωναν σε δηλώσεις σαν αυτή του Γ. Κιμούλη: “Η γενιά μου που κατηγορήθηκε ότι πολλά έχει προδώσει, κάνει πραγματικότητα το όραμα της γενιάς από την οποία γεννήθηκε και δεν πρόλαβε να το δει,” Κόκκινο, 27/1. Τέτοια αμετροέπεια, τέτοια αλαζονεία, συνάδει μόνο με την λαχτάρα να βρεθείς στην κυβέρνηση, με τη λιγούρα του πεινασμένου για νομή της εξουσίας. Κι οφείλουμε να πούμε ότι η αριστερά της γενιάς του κ. Κιμούλη δεν έδειξε ποτέ τίποτε το διαφορετικό, εκτός από την γοητεία που ασκούσε πάντα πάνω της η νομή της δεδομένης εξουσίας.

Καμία σχέση με τα οράματα της γενιάς της αντίστασης και του εθνικοαπελευθερωτικού αγώνα για λαοκρατία, για εθνική ανεξαρτησία και λαική κυριαρχία, για κοινωνική απελευθέρωση. Μόνο καπηλεία υπήρξε και υπάρχει. Καπηλεία των νεκρών. Ο κ. Τσίπρας προσπάθησε να καπηλευθεί τους εκτελεσμένους της Καισαριανής, ως αρχικομματάρχης της αριστεράς. Δεν τους τίμησε για τα ιδανικά για τα οποία έπεσαν, αλλά ως αριστερούς, κομμουνιστές.

Μόνο που δεν ήταν όλοι κομμουνιστές, αλλά και εκείνοι που ήταν έπεσαν υπέρ πατρίδος κι όχι υπέρ ιδεολογίας. Ήταν κομμουνιστές, γιατί ήταν πρώτα και κύρια πατριώτες, γιατί έδιναν τη ζωή τους για μια ελεύθερη Ελλάδα, για έναν κυρίαρχο λαό. Και ο θάνατός τους συμβόλιζε και εξακολουθεί να συμβολίζει τον αδιαπραγμάτευτο αγώνα μέχρις εσχάτων για τα αναπαλοτρίωτα δικαιώματα του λαού και της πατρίδας. Επαναλαμβάνω, τον αδιαπραγμάτευτο αγώνα.

Ανάμεσά τους κείτεται νεκρός από τις σφαίρες των ναζί εκτελεστών του ο νεαρός Ναπολέων Σουκατζίδης, ο οποίος εκτελούσε χρέη διερμηνέα στο Χαϊδάρι, όπου ήταν κρατούμενος. Όταν ο ίδιος εκφώνησε από τη λίστα που του έδωσαν το ονομά του ανάμεσα σ’ εκείνους που επρόκειτο να γράψουν ιστορία με την εκτέλεσή τους στη Καισαριανή, ο ναζί διοικητής διέταξε να εξαιρεθεί. Ο Ναπολέων δεν δέχθηκε επουδενί την εξαίρεση, μιας και κάποιος άλλος θα έπαιρνε τη θέση του. Δεν διαπραγματεύθηκε ούτε καν για τη ζωή του.

Μια “αμοιβαία επωφελής συμφωνία”…

Πώς είναι λοιπόν δυνατόν να καπηλεύεται κάποιος σαν τον κ. Τσίπρα την θυσία του, που απέναντι στους σημερινούς δυνάστες και κατακτητές της πατρίδας του Σουκατζίδη και των άλλων ηρώων, επιζητά απλά και μόνο τη διαπραγμάτευση; Και μάλιστα όπως λέει ο ίδιος, απλά μια “αμοιβαία επωφελή συμφωνία”;

Ειλικρινά, προσωπικά δεν μπορώ να το καταλάβω. Επί 5 χρόνια ζούμε κυριολεκτικά έναν πόλεμο με άλλα μέσα. Έχουμε χιλιάδες νεκρούς και εκατοντάδες χιλιάδες οικογένειες κατεστραμμένες. Βρισκόμαστε στη χειρότερη και πιο καταστροφική κρίση, που μας προκάλεσαν οι πολιτικές και προγράμματα προσαρμογής που διέταξαν οι δανειστές. Κατελύθη κάθε έννοια δικαίου και δικαιώματος στην πατρίδα μας με όπλο ένα χρέος που είναι καθ’ όλα παράνομο, καταχρηστικό και προϊόν κατάκτησης της χώρας μας χωρίς θερμό πόλεμο. Πράγμα που έχουν ομολογήσει πια σχεδόν όλοι οι διεθνείς οργανισμοί.

Μπορεί λοιπόν να μου εξηγήσει κανείς τι σημαίνει “αμοιβαία επωφελής συμφωνία” ανάμεσα στο θύμα και το θύτη; Ανάμεσα στον καταπιεσμένο και τον καταπιεστή; Ανάμεσα στον υπόδουλο και τον δυνάστη;

Μάλλον πρόκειται για deja vu. Με την ίδια αμετροέπεια μας είπε κι ο παλιός Καραμανλής όταν έφερε την μεταπολίτευση ότι στο πρόσωπό του “αποκαταστάθηκε” η δημοκρατία, που ποτέ δεν υπήρξε στη χώρα μας. Και μας οδήγησε στην πιο διεφθαρμένη κυβερνητική απολυταρχία στην ιστορία του τόπου, η οποία σήμερα έχει παντελώς χρεοκοπήσει και πνέει τα λοίσθια απειλώντας να συμπαρασύρει στα τάρταρα της ιστορίας πατρίδα και λαό.

Οι παλιότεροι θυμούνται επίσης το γνωστό σύνθημα του ΠΑΣΟΚ για τις εκλογές της 18ης Οκτωβρίου 1981, στις 19 σοσιαλισμός! Κι όντως ο σοσιαλισμός ήρθε στην Ελλάδα. Ο σοσιαλισμός των λαμόγιων και της κλεπτοκρατίας. Ο σοσιαλισμός της γενικευμένης αρπαγής και της λεηλασίας. Ο σοσιαλισμός της πιο απόλυτης εξαγοράς σ’ όλα τα επίπεδα της πολιτικής και κοινωνικής ζωής της χώρας.

Κι οφείλουμε να πούμε ότι ο κ. Τσίπρας τίμησε ιδιαίτερα τη γενιά του σοσιαλισμού της κλεπτοκρατίας. Παντού στη κυβέρνησή του θα βρούμε παλιότερα στελέχη με διαδρομή στην κλεπτοκρατία του ΠΑΣΟΚ κυρίως επί Σημίτη και Γ. Παπανδρέου. Πρώην προσωπικοί σύμβουλοι του ίδιου του ΓΑΠ είναι σήμερα υπουργοί (πχ. Βαρουφάκης, Κοτζιάς), ενώ στη θέση του Μπαλτάκου, ο κ. Σαγιάς με πολύ σκοτεινή ανάμιξη στα κυκλώματα ιδιωτικοποιήσεων κι όχι μόνο, όλα τα προηγούμενα χρόνια. Η προϋπηρεσία σε θέση κυβερνητική, ή συμβούλου του ΠΑΣΟΚ επί Σημίτη ή ΓΑΠ, φαίνεται να αποτελεί το εισητήριο για την “Κυβέρνηση Κοινωνικής Σωτηρίας”, όπως ονομάστηκε από τον κ. Τσίπρα.

Με ανύπαρκτες “κόκκινες γραμμές”

Η όλη ιστορία των 15 ημερών που μας οδήγησαν στις Προγραμματικές δηλώσεις της νέας κυβέρνησης, ξεκίνησε με την συμφωνία για συγκυβέρνηση Τσίπρα-Καμμένου. Η συγκυβέρνηση από μόνη της δεν ήταν μια κακή εξέλιξη. Αυτό που μας προβληματίζει είναι ο τρόπος. Πουθενά δεν υπήρξε μια ξεκάθαρη πολιτική συμφωνία με βάση τ