51

This Outlaw Power

Christopher Black

On June 4th the Chinese government issued a travel alert for Chinese tourists thinking of visiting the United States, a day after it issued a similar advisory to Chinese students thinking of studying in the US over concerns for their safety and security.

Chinese in the US are reporting harassment and interrogations by US immigration authorities and many now have the impression they are not welcome in the US.

The Global Times, speaking on behalf of the government stated:

The Chinese people find it difficult to accept the fact that they are being taken as thieves. The US boasts too much superiority and has been indulged by the world. Due to its short history, it lacks understanding of and respect for the rules of countries and laws of the market. The Americans of the early generations accumulated prosperity and prestige for the US, while the current US administration behaves like a wastrel generation by ruining the world’s respect for the US.”

It seems to me they are being generous to the US since the “early prosperity” of the US was built on the backs of slave labour, extermination of the indigenous peoples and theft of their lands, colonization and exploitation of other countries, including China, and two hundred years of continual warfare to secure the resources and markets of first the western hemisphere, then the world.

Their “prestige” comes out of the barrel of a gun. The US economic and military aggression against those nations that refuse to obey American demands to serve their interests ever increases and never abates.

A few days ago Mike Pompeo stated, with feigned innocence, that the US was willing to talk to Iran “without preconditions” when the real conditions Iran faces include an almost total embargo of its trade and threats of immediate attack by US forces, including nuclear attack. The Iranians quickly rejected this hypocrisy.

In the Balkans the US and its NATO war machine have again stirred up problems in Serbia where, in the NATO occupied province of Kosovo-Metohija, Serbs and Russians were detained and beaten up by Albanian security forces designed to put further pressure on Serbia to fall into the NATO camp so that the NATO machine will have complete control of the Balkans to complete the encirclement of Russia.

The war goes on in Syria, goes on in Ukraine, goes on in Afghanistan. The terrible situation of the Palestinians becomes even worse as the US plans the final solution for them-their disappearance as a people to be absorbed as citizens of other states, while Israel continues its aggressive expansion and acts as agent of the US bully in the region; the threats against Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea continue.

But the principle preoccupation of the US is still China and Russia.

On May 30th the US Department of Defense released its strategy paper for the Indo-Pacific region in which, after several pages of lies about its role in the world as savior and benefactor, set out America’s intentions to dominate China and Russia.

It is another item of evidence that the United States government and its allies are conspiring to commit crimes against peace by planning, initiating and waging wars of aggression against those nations.

These designs by the American leadership reflect not only the desire of the owners of capital in the US to dominate the world. They also reflect the Americans’ preoccupation with themselves as “exceptional” people, as the “exceptional” nation, above all others, answerable to none, which has been a characteristic of their culture since its foundation.

The aggressive objectives of the successive American governments were and are not accidents or mistakes arising out of immediate political circumstances but are a deliberate and necessary part of American foreign policy.

From its inception the American political leadership has claimed to unite the American people with a consciousness of their mission and destiny to dominate the world. War is seen as inevitable or highly probable to accomplish these objectives where intimidation and bribery fail.

To accomplish its objectives the United States has done all it can to disrupt the world order established after World War Two when world nations joined together for world peace in the United Nations Charter in 1946.

Within 3 years the US set up the NATO military alliance to threaten the Soviet Union, soon waged wars across south east Asia and overthrew governments the world over.

The rise to power of President Trump has resulted in the United States withdrawing from a series of treaties designed to reduce the threat of war and of nuclear armaments, or promote free trade, in order to free the United States from its obligations under the treaties involved to allow it to pursue its objectives using any means necessary. They have rejected international law and diplomacy in interstate relationships and now rely on threats and violence.

The Indo-Pacific Strategy Report, of June 1, 2019 begins with the claim that:

Inter-state strategic competition, defined by geopolitical rivalry between free and repressive world order visions, is the primary concern for U.S. national security. In particular, the People’s Republic of China, under the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, seeks to reorder the region to its advantage by leveraging military modernization, influence operations, and predatory economics to coerce other nations.”

Time and again the Report ascribes to China the actual behavior of the United States for is it not the United States that has sought to reorder the world since it became a world power; has it not used all these methods and more to coerce other nations? The world knows it. Yet once again their sense of being exceptional makes them blind to their stupefying arrogance and hypocrisy.

The Report then warns that,

We will not accept policies or actions that threaten or undermine the rules-based international order – an order that benefits all nations. We are committed to defending and enhancing these shared values”.

What they mean by “rules based international order” is not the order of international law as accepted by the world governments in the United Nations Charter and other international agreements but a US imposed international order, – an order that does not yet exist except in the fantasies of these gangsters-but which they never stop trying to impose on the world, an order of militarism, fear, and tyranny for the rest of the world.

The balance of the Report sets out their strategy of building up a “networked region” that is, a US controlled system of vassal states to prepare for war with China by prepositioning ammunition, equipment, logistics supplies, transportation networks, intelligence sharing and rapid deployment of forces to threaten China.

The vassal states; Japan, South Korea, Australia New Zealand, Canada, Indonesia, The Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Taiwan, are all patted on the head for assisting the United States and promised they will be rewarded with peace and prosperity so long as they accept their subservient role to the saintly United States.

Other southeast Asia nations are referred to as potential “partners” for the future as they try to brag that they have Vietnam, India, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Laos and Cambodia on their side when all they have are courtesy arrangements and cooperation on a low level that all nations have with each other. Their vision of their influence is greater than the reality.

But the three targets remain the same for according to the Report, China is a “Revisionist Power”, Russia is a “Revitalized Malign Actor,” while the DPRK, keeps its status as a “Rogue State,” all of which the Americans claim are intent on challenging their fictional “rules based order.”

There then follows, in each case, paragraph after paragraph of distortions of the facts about the nature and behavior of these three nations so that one feels compelled to break into laughter when reading these ludicrous labels that seem to come from a very bad 1950’s Hollywood film script.

But finally, after all the verbiage, they get down to it and set out their real objectives by referencing the US Defense Strategy of 2018 which sets out the four pillars of their hegemonic designs:

1. Defend the Homeland;

This is a curious phrase we have been seeing the past number of years in American parlance, this concept of ‘homeland,” but in contradistinction to what is never stated. Well, the to the rest of the world, of course, which they now consider their lands as well, their outlands, and so the need for a phrase to identify the US as the “homeland”. What could more display their colonial mindset than the use of this phrase?

2. Remain the preeminent military power in the world;

This is a threat to the world, to humankind, and can only be maintained by the pauperization of its own people.

3. Ensure the balances of power in key regions remain in our favour;

Meaning that they intend to keep playing one nation off against another and create chaos where necessary, to play both sides against the middle, whatever it takes so that the United States maintains the ruling hand,

4. Advance an international order that is most conducive to our security and prosperity

And here we have their principle objective, meaning that, despite all the rhetoric about shared values, shared goals and friendships with its vassal allies, the world is meant to enrich and serve the United States.

To make sure the world knows of their power and what they are willing to do with it the Report states:

In the region, US INDOPACOM currently has more than 2,000 aircraft; 200 ships and submarines; and more than 370,000 Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen, DoD civilians, and contractors assigned within its area of responsibility. The largest concentration of forces in the region are in Japan and the ROK. A sizable contingent of forces (more than 5,000 on a day-to-day basis) are also based in the U.S. territory of Guam, which serves as a strategic hub supporting crucial operations and logistics for all U.S. forces operating in the Indo-Pacific region. Other allies and partners that routinely host U.S. forces on a smaller scale include the Philippines, Australia, Singapore, and the United Kingdom through the island of Diego Garcia”.

Other bases are planned in Australia and New Guinea.

In describing its relations and military cooperation with its vassal allies it places special emphasis on Taiwan and uses language that in direct terms violates the One China Policy of China, which the US pays lip service to. It is tantamount to a declaration that Taiwan is a US protectorate instead of an integral part of China.

They state:

The objective of our defense engagement with Taiwan is to ensure that Taiwan remains secure, confident, free from coercion, and able to peacefully and productively engage the mainland on its own terms.”

So when US, Australian, French, or British naval forces claim they are traversing the Straight of Taiwan as an exercise in “freedom of navigation” we know that what they are really doing is using force to divide China, to treat it as if it were still the weak China of the 19th century when American gunboats until as late as 1949 ran up and down the Yangtze River as if they owned it; to slap it in the face, to dare it with insults.

The situation has become so tense that the Global Times on June 6,th in an op ed by Wei Jianguo, said:

China is able to withstand US maximum pressure, due to the country’s economic resilience, and Chinese people’s resolute determination. Suffering from a century of humiliation, the Chinese nation has been accustomed to such pressure, as shown in the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, as well as the Korean War or the War to Resist US Aggression and Aid Korea. The unity of Chinese people is a vital reason for the country’s fundamental victory in history.”

The Peoples’ Daily stated, “America is the enemy of the world.”

Russia and China, in their defence, are intensifying their economic and military cooperation but the threat remains and is increasing. The answer may lie in the fact that the US strategy is ultimately self-defeating. The more they try to dominate the world, the more intense the resistance becomes.

Even their alliances are coming apart at the seams as the thieves bicker about their share of the loot. But the question remains, what to do about this enemy of the world, this outlaw power.

Originally published by New Eastern Outlook
Christopher Black is an international criminal lawyer based in Toronto. He is known for a number of high-profile war crimes cases and recently published his novel Beneath the Clouds. He writes essays on international law, politics and world events, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook.
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It amazes me that people from Russia, China and other countries still travel to the US and its western satellites as tourists and students and that people and businesses are willing to invest money there.

Citizens of those countries are liable to be harassed and arrested on ludicrous trumped up charges, thrown into some squalid dungeon in the US or UK Gulag and left to rot until they agree to some plea bargain to get out. Like the Butina woman in America or the arrest of the Huawei executive in Canada, and any number of similar cases. Their “judicial” systems are compromised and corrupt and used for political persecution and intimidation. Russia and China should ban travel by its citizens to the US and their satellites for their own protection. They are now completely lawless. The Rule of Law and independent judiciary are just sick jokes.

Likewise, I can’t understand people from abroad keeping assets or investing in those countries. The Bank of England recently carried out the biggest bank heist in history, stealing 80 tons of Venezuelan gold. People like Abramovich have been barred from entering the country and threatened with the confiscation of their assets, like Chelsea FC. Assets are routinely “frozen” (stolen) on absurd pretexts. Property from persons of Iranian heritage have been confiscated by the US Lawfare Courts on the pretext that Iran “was responsible for 9/11.” Citizens of those countries are routinely threatened and blackmailed for political purposes and to force them to become intelligence/ subversion assets. Tens of billions have been stolen from Venezuela. The assets of the Libyan Sovereign Wealth Fund were stolen in 2011. Cameron even stole a ship load of Libyan currency that had been printed in the UK.

BigB
BigB

For those who downvoted my comments below about Russia/China’s alternative neoliberal globalisation: you were right: “China wants globalisation”.

This is not my correction though: that is a direct quote from President Xi’s keynote speech at SPIEF 2019 …that was winding down as I was writing.

The key themes were ‘anti-globalisation v globalisation’ – where the US was the anti-globaliser and Russia/China the globalisers …and ‘sustainable development’ – the agenda that will finally kill the planet: as I have attested to on a subsequent forum.

It was a globalist’s Tea Party – by all accounts – with the UN’s Gutteres echoing the neoliberal sustainability agenda …rather unsurprisingly. Both VVP and Xi stressed they want to strengthen the current world order of ‘global governance’ (someone else can count how many times Xi used that phrase) – including strengthening the unofficial neoliberal world government of the WTO. Whilst high officials of the IMF and WB applauded; along with trade delegations from around the world. Indeed. 650 deals worth $47.1bn were concluded on the sidelines. And the Russian Trade Minister is going to look into lifting restrictions on 100% ownership: that’s called trade liberalisation for the hard of thinking, ease of downvoting without engaging crowd.

So Russia/China want de-territorialisation and an open trade landscape for the TNCs to operate freely: raping humanity and the planet. And Trump is the disruptor that stands in the way of globalisation under the aegis of the UN/IMF/WB/WTO “rules base global order”: Russia/China’s goal. The dollar is safe as a reserve: so long as it is not used as a weapon. China wants globalisation. If you read Xi’s keynote speech: you can here it from the horse’s mouth. Downvote that.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

I really don’t understand the apparent logic of only criticising our own western totalitarian supra-national state and then either keeping quiet, or possibly glorifying, the other totalitarian states dominating much of the other two tri-spheres of our planet.

Totalitarian regimes in each of the world’s tri-spheres are pretty much the same, ultimately, and all are displaying the failings of humanity across millenia. Suggesting that our NATO-centered one is worse than the Russian or Chinese one is rather academic, after all, they are all evil bastards and happy to kill those who disagree with them. Especially if we measure their inhumanity across the last 105 years, each group has probably killed as many innocents as the other, more or less.

Igor
Igor

It’s worse because the West is duplicitous.

US citizens did not want to fight at all in WW2. FDR’s regime ignored the will of the People while maintaining a front of fighting for Democracy, which the regime was ignoring at home.

Assad’s a bad guy, but GW (9/11) Bush is okay?
Assad is evil because he fights West supported terrorists in Syria, but Bush-Obama can kill civilians overseas without due process?

We should continue to be war criminals because everyone else is just as bad?

Clean our own house first.

BigB
BigB

Neither do I, Frank. I’ve been dropping hints as to what ‘global governance’ means for months. I really do not understand the acceptance of neoliberal globalisation because it comes from the East: ergo it must be different. When the TNS; TNCs; and trans-national banking institutions gut the world; and open the carcass for the vulture capitalists to feed on …humanity will be finished. And very probably: so will the planet in its current co-evolutionary interspecies ecology …especially if the ‘green’ neoliberal sustainable growth and decarbonisation agenda is enacted.

I am powerless to stop it: what makes me upset and sad by rotation is …HOW FUCKING STUPID DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO CHEER IT ON! Even when it is by default; by denying that we are destroying this beautiful world; the web of life; and all those amazing and unseen connections that make this moment in the rose garden possible.

It is hard not to be cynical: when intelligent and gifted people cannot see what is happening. It is hard not to draw the conclusion the world will be better off without us: and all our petty narcissistic stupidity.

There, said it now.

Ramdan
Ramdan

BigB:
Maybe what’s happening on this US vs. Russia-China dichotomy is explained by
this:

In the collective consciousness now US (and allies, lets call them KING A) is seen as the #1 enemy of humanity—mainly because of the wars, manslaughter, pillage, manipulation, etc.
Then (this dualistic mind) has the alternative of a KING B, which does not threatened us with death and on top, promises material growth and wellbeing for all.
Under those premises the choice is fairly clear: KING B.

…BUT, that ‘election’ is blind to the fact that the ‘growth’ promised by KING B is based on false premises, mainly: infinite (economic) growth is not possible on finite resources (planet), therefore KING B means death but just at a (supposedly) slower pace.

If all of the above is right, then the discussion is not about KING A or B, but about the underlying premises: materialistic(consumption)-centered living vs. non-materialistic-centered living…..or, how to achieve wellbeing for all without the wars and without killing the planet….which leaves people with “no-option” (external)…

Maybe (and just maybe) framed like this (and acknowledging the basic faults and ‘virtues’ of KING A and B) things get easier to underestand.
…However, we can change nobody. On this, like in everything else : ‘Budhas only point the way, but you- yourself must strive’.

mark
mark

It seems logical to me. Concentrate on the criminality and abuses you have direct experience of in the country where you live. If you’re Chinese you want to concentrate on China’s shortcomings. If you’re British, concentrate on Britain’s shortcomings. Try to improve things where you live. If you’re Chinese and hear criticism of China from the UK, you may agree that’s valid and say, thanks a lot, but hadn’t you best sort out your own country first? And vice versa. Though Russia and China generally couldn’t care less about the criminality, abuses, injustices, lies and hypocrisy of the UK where it doesn’t directly affect them.

harry law
harry law

Trump spoke today about the forthcoming G20 meeting, stressing that if Chinese President Xi Jinping does not meet the US leader at the event, tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese goods will become immediately effective.
Trump also mentioned Asian tech giant Huawei, emphasising that it could be part of a trade agreement between Washington and Beijing. The remark comes at a time when the White House has been lobbying its European allies against granting Huawei access to its networks https://sputniknews.com/us/201906101075775522-trump-china-devalues-its-currency/
Can Trump never cease to be such an arrogant fool, can anyone imagine European countries and others severing trade with Huawei because Trump told them Huawei were a national security risk just last week, then having done so, and having to withstand all the negative blow back from China, for the US to turn around a week later and declare Huawei could be part of a US/China deal. The man is a genuine moron.

Igor
Igor

It’s not “Trump”. USA has been using sanctions to bludgeon nations for some time. It’s the “neocons”, “Clintonistas”, and the color revolutionaries of the Obama White House.
All directed by a tiny nation in the Mideast.

Antonym
Antonym

Am I the only one finding that China and Russia are not natural allies? Two totally different cultures, as different as Germany and Russia or Japan and China.

The US Cabal is presently driving them in each others arms: stupidity, dumb or clever planned?

Jen
Jen

The cultures of the US, Japan and South Korea are very different, as different as Russia and China are from each other, yet the US is allies with both Japan and South Korea.

What point are you trying to make?

Russia and China signed a friendship treaty way back in 2001.

mark
mark

They are complementary in every way. Their differences create a multiplier effect in their strengths through their informal alliance, which is an entirely logical and natural development that will only grow stronger with time.

China is short of energy and raw materials. Russia can supply these in spades, easily and efficiently as a neighbouring country, for their mutual benefit. Russia is a reliable supplier, China is a reliable customer and partner. This can render any US maritime blockade of China ineffective. It also renders US economic warfare against Russia’s energy sector and trade ineffective.

China benefits from Russian high technology products and military equipment that it currently lacks, though it is making rapid progress in these areas. China can supply the investment Russia requires, and all the products previously imported from western countries, consumer goods of all kinds.

Both countries are threatened by US military aggression, economic and financial boycotts, political subversion and terrorism, and propaganda vilification. Washington has provided ample evidence that it cannot and never will be a friend and partner to either. If they stand together, they can neutralise US hostility and aggression. By cooperating in the new Silk Road, they can if necessary completely insulate themselves from the US and its EU satellites.

America has shown itself to be so implacably hostile to both countries that Divide And Rule will never work. It is clearly intent on the destruction of both.

Antonym
Antonym
Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

Indeed, some totalitarianism is preferred by some ‘enlightened’ western ‘intelligensia’ than other totalitarianism: they appear to want to be shafted by a panda or a bear rather than shafted by a neoliberal politician in their own country which they can vote in or out of office every 4-5 years, unlike the panda or the bear.

mark
mark

They can vote out a 30 shekel whore and get a clone in its place.

andyoldlabour
andyoldlabour

This is a superb article, which IMHO sums up the feelings of enlightened people around the World.
The “unenlightened” would be those who hang on every sperge of lies and propaganda from the MSM, and implicitly believe all that our politicians (from all parties) tell us.
I have today read quite a disturbing article by Peter Brookes (of the Heritage Foundation – I urge you to read up about this organisation founded in the Reagan years), where he rants about the dangers of WMD’s in the Middle East and the threats posed by Iran and Syria.
We know that the three main threats in the Middle East are US, Saudi Arabia and Israel, who all use “terrorist groups” – radical Islam, to sow chaos, death and destruction in the region.

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/syrian-wmd-proliferation-could-set-middle-east-fire-61377

BigB
BigB

Among ground nesting birds: a basic survival adaptation is common. The mother feigns a broken wing, to draw attention away from the nest. It seems to me an analogously similar theme is developing on this site: America bad = China good? OK as a superficial analysis: but is actually eventually obfuscatory of the neoliberalsised fully integrated global economy. One that seems to have developed over the last half century without anyone ever noticing.

Criticism of China is taboo here: and a blind eye is turned to China’s sub-imperial position in the neoliberal global economy. Just some of the facts I have posted to support this empirical position are: China’s finance is a sub-imperial extension of the post-BW Washington Consensus; China manipulates its currency daily (despite official denials) to stay ‘in band’; the currency differential supports the USD – keeping it over-valued and the CNY (yuan) under-valued – to aid China’s export trade-driven economy; China/Russia are fully committed to the WTO/IMF/WB “rules based global order” – a re-commitment they state on every joint communique (including the recent BRI Forum); the so-called ‘BRICS alternative’ financial institutions – NDB, AIIB, and CRA – are all dollarised for loans (this is easily verifiable or refutable) [This means sub-imperial loans force poor countries into dollar vassalship and export led production – aka the resource curse]; the BRICS countries refinanced the IMF – easily verifiable; the CRA loans are neoliberal ‘strings attached’ loans – 30% from the CRA plus a Structural Adjustment Plan from the IMF; the AIIB and IMF co-fund many projects together (11, I think – without checking); the IMF, UNSC, and WB all endorse the BRI as a business opportunity for the neoliberal global economy. Last but not least, BRIC was a Goldman Sachs alternative globalisation ploy dreamt up by ‘Lord Jim’ O’Neil – Baron Gatley and ex-Tory Minister …all facts that I have linked to multiple times.

So, in fact: I’m just messin’ with you. It becomes a lesson in epistemology to see how long people can refuse to accept the facts of the alternative globalisations of the world economy. Intra-neoliberal capitalist squabbles aside: the world economy globalised decades ago. The TNCs have been building up a trans-national powerbase for 70 years. One that is very well established, if not complete. Offshore is where the real global hegemon resides. Check out their BRICS communiques: China/Russsia are committed to ‘Global Governance’. One of the tenets of which is Multi-Stakeholder Governance – the TNCs; international CSOs; and local NGOs taking corporate control of global issues – particularly climate change. Anyone who thinks this is desirable is either already on, or is in urgent need of medication.

The US/China Trade War – despite this article – is largely phoney. If it gets real: expect the shortest currency war in history …precipitating financial crisis. The yuan and dollar are joined at the hip by the euro$ – they share the same fate. This is all about ‘tech transfers’ – AI, 5G, cybersecurity, fintech; etc – where China is way ahead of the US …and they will not share or budge on US demands to do so. Why should they? But they are not about to go to war over it: and a real trade war would be internecine for the systemically fragile global neoliberal economy [see Jack Rasmus, for instance].

Everyone gets the dollar is toilet paper: the same everyone will argue the yuan is not. This amuses me no end – the fact that people think they are separate. Debts matter. Debts are unrepayable. Paying down debt counter-intuitively reduces economic activity. The size of the debt does not matter: the serviceability – debt management – is all that counts. China – like every other country – subsidises the US national debt and US imperialism: as a sub-imperial vassal. They have to support the euro$ – the world’s reserve currency – to support world trade. Whether they like it or not. The fact that they have gone to considerable lengths to jump through Lagarde’s hoops to place the yuan in the SDR basket shows they do not like it. But the alternative: the SDR as world reserve with a new centralised reserve bank …is the globalists mastubatory dream of TNC self-financing self-governance with a ‘Corporate Self-Responsibility’ ‘voluntarist’ ethic …aka the NWO. Anyone who thinks this is desirable needs medication …and a long holiday in an asylum.

All this Vltchek/Escobar/Korybko crypto-globalism that has colonised the ‘progressive’ imaginary is, wittingly or unwittingly, globalist NWO propaganda. Yes, Americanism’s exceptionalist imperialism is as great an evil as you can find …but it is built on sub-imperialism, peripheralisation, and exclusionary tiers of the neoliberal globalised world system. The real powerbase is offshore and trans-national (the TNS = Trans-National Suprastate) – financed by Black Market euro$. I haven’t even mentioned the City or the ecological murder by debt money aspect …but obsessive focus on America Bad/China Better is proto-globalist and crypto-capitalist in its lack of any real analysis as to why the US can sustain its imperialism. Because the world economy supports the ‘exorbitant privilege’ afforded by the euro$. To which the globalists of all countries – including China and Russia – want to replace with an even more anti-humanitarian biocidal alternative – the centralised control of the SDR.

Anyone who thinks this is desirable needs medication …and a long holiday in an asylum …and lobotomising

Gezzah Potts

BigB…. Am certainly no fan of China or Russia (or pretty much anyone actually) but for now; I don’t see them rampaging round the world overthrowing Govts, endlessly threatening countries with war, throwing sanctions against any country that dosn’t get on its knees, maintaining over 800 military bases around the planet and behaving like demented psychopaths. I also am uneasy about Andre Vltchek’s rose tinted views about countries like China, especially his use of the word ‘socialist’ to describe them when clearly they’re not. Under the Neoliberal economic system, we are well down the path of a corporate fascist dystopia. In fact, we’re pretty much there already. And its been integrated right thruout the World’s economy for decades, as you point out, along with the relentless propaganda.

Ramdan
Ramdan

I agree with you Gezza. Is not much of China-Russia support as is the fact that at this moment in history when people has started to realize US (+ all other colonial powers) mendacious behaviour and all the lies, manslaughter, destruction, etc…then the reaction is sort of ‘anything but US’…and as you said, China and Russia are not threatening global war and death every other minute.
People go with ‘best option’ at hand.
BigB is right, that China-Russia alternative might be a kind of same dog different collar…but….
All in all, the real options are not even US, China, Russia or Timbuktu….but a deeper personal transformation that moves away from egocentric, materialistic perspective and make room for a new, non-materialistic and really enlightened consciousness.

Francis Lee
Francis Lee

”BigB is right, that China-Russia alternative might be a kind of same dog different collar…but…”

Glad that you mentioned the ”but” But this sort of imagined symmetry touted as existing between different nation states, in this instance, between the Eurasian bloc, and the Anglo-Zionist bloc does not come near to the actually existing asymmetry. The first cold war was not just a war against communism but a war against the right of countries to pursue their own economic goals that might not serve US interests. Communist states were merely the strongest offenders.

To argue that both Russia and China are capitalist economies is true enough, but to say that they are imperialist stretches credulity to breaking point. It was I think Condoleeza Rice who opined that ”Russia’s interests end at Russia’s borders”- pretty much a flat fact, no value-judgement implied. If Russia was ever an empire it has long been stripped of its dominions and economies. Same goes for China whose invasions against neighbouring countries – India 1962, and Vietnam in 1978 – followed by quick withdrawal was about the limits of its imperial ambitions.

Self-evidently, imperial nations have large military machines and a penchant for using them. The sheer asymmetry Russia’s military capacity between Russia on the one hand and NATOs on the other is vast. NATOs 28 members operate military bases in 80 countries spanning the world from the South Atlantic to the north Pacific, whilst Russia maintains military facilities, mostly nominal and defensive, in precisely 10 countries. The combined population which adds up to much the same levels as Russia itself, who share borders with it. Does this sound like an imperialist country?

Moreover, in economic terms Russia’s GPD is smaller than that of Italy or Brazil and barely bigger than Australia or Spain. The came about due to the loss or productive power which took place during the Yeltsin catastrophe. Russia was force into a semi-peripheral economic status relying on the extractive commodities of oil and case; some recovery has taken place but this is a slow process given the outflow of capital resulting from the actions of the oligarchic cliques still in evidence despite Putin’s efforts at reform. Again, does this sound like an imperialist country? A strong case could be made out for Russia being a semi-peripheral economy, at least in economic terms.

Turning the the bona fide imperialist bloc In order to subordinate any recalcitrant states the empire constructed various institutions -IMF, World Bank and WTO which are under its direct and indirect control. This has been instantiated on more than one occasion. But let’s stick to the Russian Loan to the Ukraine which refused to pay back given the support of the IMF.

The IMF broke four of its rules by lending to Ukraine:

(1) Not to lend to a country that has no visible means to pay back the loan (the “No More Argentinas” rule, adopted after the IMF’s disastrous 2001 loan to that country). (2) Not to lend to a country that repudiates its debt to official creditors (the rule originally intended to enforce payment to U.S.-based institutions). (3) Not to lend to a country at war – and indeed, destroying its export capacity and hence its balance-of-payments ability to pay back the loan. Finally (4), not to lend to a country unlikely to impose the IMF’s austerity “conditionalities.

” Ukraine did agree to override democratic opposition and cut back pensions, but its junta proved too unstable to impose the austerity terms on which the IMF insisted. Nevertheless IMF head Christine Lagarde made a new loan to Ukraine in spring 2015, she merely expressed a verbal hope for peace. Ukrainian President Porochenko announced the next day that he would step.

The IMF is now willing to countenance countries repudiating their official their official debts to Russia or China. Thus changing its rules to clear a path for making loans to Ukraine, or any other NATO-friendly countries being the latest development in the escalation of the new cold war.

If Russia had been an Imperialist power no doubt a gunboat would have been on its way to recover its pound of flesh.

Russia may be a capitalist country, it may not fully democratic in the full sense of the word (who in this benighted age is?) but it must have the right to be sovereign, self-governing and free to follow its own economic and political policies, and not to be surrounded and threatened by real imperialist powers who seem determined not to let it.

This is an old (rather tedious) debate on the left, particularly the Trotskyist left. as to whether or not the Soviet Union was capitalist and/or imperialist state. The ‘state-caps’as they were called, decided that the USSR was capitalist, and not just capitalist, but a particularly pernicious form of capitalism, actually worse than US capitalist-imperialism. Some quite clever polemicists like Sidney Hook. But sadly they many ended up in the neo-con camp. Irving Kristol, Christopher Hitchens, and our own lovely Guardian polemicist, ‘Let’s bomb Russia’ Paul Mason.

Ramdan
Ramdan

Francis, thanks for your reply and clearly explaining your point.

For me the choice is simple: Peace and no-violence, no plaundering and respect for life in all its forms. With that inside, you can not be manipulated or make to buy “humanitarian interventions”, defense of human rights through bombings and coupe de etat….nor with beeing free because you can wear Prada or have access to so call “advance” gadgets….

Ultimately, the actual revolution, change, has to happened within ourselves, inside…a change from self-centered, materialistic, idiotic consumption to a more spiritual-based conception that sees reality beyond any and all man-created categories.
We are all one and the same. This life is not a possibility to achieve anything material but just a learning path, a liberating path.

BigB
BigB

Francis:

I respect your economic knowledge and really appreciate your detailed response. With respect, the state-structuralist view you put forward is exactly the model that needs revision: ecologically and economically – in light of entropy; modern market theory; and the existence of the euro$ markets – that mediate as much as 90% of world trade …according to Shaxson. Including extractivism.

Indeed, you reviewed his latest book: so perhaps I should bring the City into consideration …as the core of the tributary accumulation of the global neoliberal market fundamentalism?

First: I should make clear that I use the broadest definition of imperialism – of lifestyle; credit; technological, resource, and financialisational …and not just military imperialism. Though the main purpose of US imperial might is in the ‘global policeman’ role: keeping the neoliberal capitalist core, semi-periphery, periphery, and excluded/exploited hierarchical tiers exactly as they are.

So, Russia and China are not traditionally imperialistic: which is why I would prescribe Marini’s term ‘sub-imperial’ terminology …extending the credit and financialisation imperialism of the core over the periphery. As academics like Professor Patrick Bond and William I Robinson have detailed.

Above even the core: the Trans-National Suprastate (TNS) – of the uber-capitalist billionaires; the top 140 TNCs (including the worst polluting extractivist corporations); and the trans-national financial institutions (banks; shadow banks; hedge funds; etc) – would rank as ultra-imperialist …even though, strictly speaking, they do not even have any guns.

Second: I should include the hegemonic neoliberal extractivist, expansionist, and super-exploitation model the current global world system follows. In line with numerous other comments I have made: I view this materialistic model as lifestyle imperialism – not just for today – but as commodifying and consuming the future. I’d like to keep hope alive, but must nevertheless note that is if the current extractivist oil fueled materialistic paradigm leaves much of a future. Is it not an imperialism to live profligate consumer lifestyles now – expecting the coming ‘Z generation’ and their unborn children to socialise and foot the bill? I would say it is.

I did not draw any symmetries – or assymetries – I said the world system is falsely conceived of as such. The current world system is not easily bifurcated into neat East or West assemblies: and is best considered as a whole. Elsewhere, I maintain I would much rather focus on world system ecology and economy – and dispose of nation state analysis in general. This makes diagnosis of the world system economy as imperialist and omnicidal all the more easy. And I would say, irrefutably so.

In fact: the whole misconception of two hemispheres, or two contrasting ways of life is generally to refute the irrefutability …as when Vltchek builds the imaginary conception of an ‘Ecological Civilisation’ rising through Eurasian integration into the ‘supercontinent’ …or Mackinder’s ‘World Island’. Which, as I am sure you know, would peripheralise the US/UK (just the City – extended to ‘ZUSUK’ to include Zurich and the lowland ‘offshore’ secrecy jurisdictions – such as Luxembourg, Belgium, Holland, etc in the City’s financial sphere). Which would overturn the current hegemonic order. Which is why both countries are ringed by bases: to keep them in their sub-imperial place. As the Atlanticist integration takes place in parallel.

Indeed: Russia is the one country seeking seccession from the current imperial euro$ order. As VVP recently said: “We are not abandoning the dollar: the dollar is abandoning us”. Russia dumped the bulk of its Treasuries (USTs) without fuss: the markets did not collapse; the dollar got stronger, in fact. Now they are using yuan as reserves – fearing sanctions – trading in currency swaps. But this is a drop in the ocean of the reserve markets (>2% as far as I am aware). Above the euro and yen – the dollar reigns supreme …for a worthless Fiat. [There are smaller ‘euro-euro’ and ‘euro-yen’ unregulated markets too: but let’s not complicate it].

But Russia is the exception that breaks the rule. I’m sure you are aware Russia is owned offshore – estimated usually at 80% – much of it in Londongrad. Shaxson even uses this as a creation myth for the genesis of the euro$ markets. Russia is still bleeding from capital flight, even though it slowed recently. Michael Hudson puts the figure at $25bn a year since the early 90s – over $1tn total …funding Chelsea FC instead of Russian recovery.

As you raised the question – what is the answer? Just who is sovereign? When fealty has to be paid to the dollar; when trade is mediated in a foreign currency – enforcing vassalship and export driven econometrics; when there is a huge unregulated offshore pool of petro- and illicit capital offshore challenging regulated banking onshore; whenthis has given rise to ‘casino capitalism’ shadow banking; when FTAs, RTAs, customs unions, and regional trading blocs facilitate the borderless flows of goods, services, labour, and capital; when the neoliberal WTO rules in favour of TNCs; when the IMF/WB development loans come with neoliberalising strings attached; when resources are a curse; and financialisation is expanding with fintech to make us all poorer? It is not the people, is it Francis? The offshore TNCs have become highly influential “Shadow Sovereigns” – to coin Susan Georges phrase. And their influence is extending into ‘Global Governance’. Where will that leave us?

The world is a rich man’s paradise: unionised labour and democracies have been smashed; the world totally re-ordered by class racism and financial imperialism; we have been de-politicised and de-sovereigntised – our rights and freedoms ‘offshored’; what labour is left is about to be lost to AI; wages have been stagnabt for decades; the poor are getting poorer, the underdeveoloped more underdeveloped; the extractivism, expansionism, and hyper-exploitation of today and tomorrow is perhaps at its zenith: and the globalist model is killing the host.

I know we realise this: perhaps that makes the ‘grass is greener’ syndrome explicable? Even though ‘over there’ is exactly the same model of extractivism, expansionism, and hyper-exploitation. Add in entropic ecological analysis: and that ‘greener’ is a pseudo-ecological civilisation.

As the global markets – except the magic stock market – invert and implode; the G7 central banks prepare to ‘ease’ with rate cuts. The extractivist model is broken: capitalism died between 07-09 …to be replaced with perpetual debt monetisation and cosmetic ‘Global Destruction Protocol’ growth. One final point: surely it must have crossed the mind that the assembling armies may not be going to fight each other? Or possibly the parallel globalisations might not be parallel and alternative at all ?

There is nothing I can do, but lament the lack of anti-capitalist, anti-globalist, critique. But I do not have to cheer on the extractivist, expansionist, materialistic oppressors as they debt-fund the anti-future. Making the case that China/Russia’s neoliberal extractivist methodology is slightly more humane and humanitarian when, in the meta-analysis,it is just as quickly killing the planet seems somewhat unnecessary, don’t you think? It is all part of the lifestyle imperialism we are witnessing over today and tomorrow. Modernity is murder by debt money …East and West.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

I’d love to read more of your excellent insights. As I said it would be great if you were to ever find inclination and time to start your own blog. I’m intrigued as to your background, you have a wide and deep knowledge of the physical and metaphysical.

harry law
harry law

Francis Lee, never took much notice of Paul Mason so looked him up, could go no further than this paragraph from an article in the New Statesman….
“To bring the perpetrators of the war crime in Douma to justice means unblocking the multilateral system at the UN and the International Criminal Court. That in turn means persuading the Russian people to elect a government that does not sanction torture, chemical weapons attack, the assassination of opponents and the conquest of territory by brute force”. He should stop running away from the orderlies, they are only trying to help him.

mark
mark

Russia and China are not deranged and arrogant enough to want to rule the world, or spend trillions on a series of crazy wars for the Zionist Apartheid Regime. Unlike certain other people.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

China are doing a great job of buying up countries around the world for their mineral and other resources. Can’t blame them really.

mark
mark

Yes, they trade freely and fairly, pay cash on the barrel, don’t interfere in their politics and build infrastructure that western powers never bothered to in a couple of hundred years of colonial rule.

Gezzah Potts

Thanks Ramdan, agree with your sentiments, especially your last paragraph. Try to live as simply as possible, without screwing people over or grasping for more and more possessions, and simply treating others how you’d like to be treated yourself. Its tough tho in this Neoliberalist society when all around its just rampant narcissism and hedonism and being bombarded with ads 24/7 to buy your new ‘lifestyle’. I try to be like a stone in a pond – the ripple effect.

Frank Poster
Frank Poster

Eloquent and excellent riposte BigB. It’s a refreshing viewpoint which cuts through the rose tinted perspective of may here, and elsewhere. You might want to consider starting your own blog.

mark
mark

This is just the standard Washington Hymn Sheet.
Repeat after me: US investment good, Chinese investment bad!
US investment good, Chinese investment bad!
Four legs good, two legs bad!
Baa! Baa!! Baa!!!

Norcal
Norcal

Was this moment America’s turning point? I think so, and it got JFK Assinated…

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2013/08/jfk-vs-the-military/309496/

Michael McNulty
Michael McNulty

I think the US will eventually break up into five or six balkanized states which can only be a good thing for the world. The thirteen deep south Confederate States can export tobacco and cotton for example, while Oregon and Washington State might export timber and the mid-west exports grain. New England could attract tourists while California, a large state on its own, could continue developing technology.

Americans should be made to bicker with each other and left unable to unite to attack the world again.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

That would be karma if that ever were to occur, since that’s exactly what the Neocons are planning for Russia.

Harry Stotle
Harry Stotle

People who tell the truth about the Washington concensus tend end up in a maximum security prison (or on the run) while the media manipulate the public into being suspicious about the motives of whistleblowers rather than the terrible crimes they unearth.

Israel can turn Gaza into an open air prison camp while murdering Palestinian children in front of the cameras yet the vast majority of those in the west simply haven’t got a clue what is going on there (because of an orchestrated news blackout).

Or if we turn back the clock the US can drop atom bombs on defenseless citizens and it isn’t regard as a crime, or even as an immoral thing to do.

It goes without saying they will keep getting away with it until the first western leader is hung from a lampost but as it stands they are more likely to be given regular columns in the Guardian or invited to prestigious speaking events while being paid handsomely for inane homilies about world peace.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

People who tell the truth about the Washington concensus tend end up in a maximum security prison (or on the run)

Absolutely true.
And those who tell the truth about Moscow’s corruption end up on false charges to silence them, or dead.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

…and Beijing’s corruption: dead.
Totalitarian regimes in each of the world’s tri-spheres are pretty much the same ultimately, and displaying the failings of humanity of millenia.

mark
mark

Of course such a thing would be completely unthinkable in the US, UK or Sweden.

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker

I’m not saying it is Mark, but you are favouring one or two sets of totalitarian regimes to our own. They are all as bad as each other, ultimately.

mark
mark

Every country is a mixture of good and bad, every system a mixture of positives and negatives. I just don’t feel obliged to join in the Two Minute Hate against Iran, China, Venezuela, Russia, Syria, or whichever other country is currently in the Neocon and Zionist cross hairs.

If I lived in those countries, I would have concerns about things like inequality, corruption, or excessive clerical influence. But I don’t, and those things don’t harm me very much. And it’s for the people who live there to deal with these issues. There’s a huge beam in the eye to worry about at home, the mote in their eyes not so much.

Capricornia Man
Capricornia Man

If you look at things that are happening on every inhabited continent today, you could be excused for thinking we face the prospect of a world-wide fascist dictatorship.

The MSM play an important part in promoting this lurch away from democracy – except, of course, when the state turns around and bites THEM (whereupon they expect our support for “freedom of the press”).

Gezzah Potts

‘International rules based order’… Such quaint language to disguise the real meaning: blood drenched Imperialism, blatant thuggery, the theft of other countries resources, invading and bombing and overthrowing Govts, the ever increasing use of sanctions against those countries that refuse to be puppets; like Iran and Syria, the portrayal of resistance movements as ‘terrorists’ such as Hezbollah for example. What pure evil resides in the United States. All for us and a few crumbs for you as long as you follow orders. Living in Australia, its shameful how low the Australian Govt will bow and grovel to their masters in Washington. And the total mind numbing hypocrisy….

Antonym
Antonym

Surely Bolton US is the no.1 bully but Xi China is no damsel in distress; just ask the neighboring countries about the border changes demanded by Beijing, or their very one sided financial contracts.
By only highlighting US aggression the whole article becomes a kind of fake news, and we have had enough of that.
China just blocked On-Guardian and would not blink an eye to do cut of Off-Guardian too; self censorship is deadly in the long run.

eddie
eddie

Most of us in China use a vpn, so yes, the Guardian is accessible for those wishing to read the latest GCHQ / CIA propaganda.
BTW, how are your 16 spy agencies working out for you, there in the ‘land of the free’ ?

Francis Lee
Francis Lee

Okay, but small beer really and actually irrelevant. In a global poll conducted by Pew regarding who was the most dangerous country to world peace guess who came out on top? Who is the rampaging bull elephant and threat to world peace and order? Who wants to create a world empire? When asked what he thought of western (i.e., British) civilization Ganhdi replied, ‘I think that it would be a very good idea’. The Anglo-zionist empire want’s to interfere in the internal affairs of sovereign states, the Anglo-zionist empire wants to start a war, the Eurasian bloc doesn’t – that the alpha and omega of things. As for the rest, ‘manifest destiny’ ‘spreading democracy’ ‘humanitarian intervention’ – this is just grade one BS.

The now discarded Westphalian principles about non-interference in the internal affairs of sovereign nations is now unfortunately defunct. This means that war becomes inevitable if this path continues to be pursued by the AZ empire. Russia and China are obliged to defend themselves and are doing so.

andyoldlabour
andyoldlabour

It isn’t “fake news” to report on geopolitical realities, or the undeniable fact that since WW2, the US has been effecting coups, regime change, wars all around the globe and has been responsible for millions of deaths, not to mention its use of chemical weapons – Iran Iraq War, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Iraq 2003.
No other country/empire in the history of the World has come anywhere near the crimes committed by the US.

Purgatory
Purgatory

Surely Bolton US is a bully, but don’t paint Xi China as a fragile damsel in distress: just ask its neighboring countries about its aggression and border change claims.
Why try to counter balance biased Western MSM with pro “poor” China stuff? That comes close to fake news and too many have had enough of that. Show both side of this coin.

harry law
harry law

The shining city on a hill, the exceptional and indispensible nation and also the nation that wants hegemony over the whole world, good luck with achieving that. Bolton, Pompeo and Pence are Neocons who think the United States should have a military and economic advantage over the whole world, therefore because Trump appointed them he is responsible for all the bellicose noise coming from them, the idea that war against either Russia or China could be won without destroying all combatants is preposterous. It is true that the US could destroy both Russia and China 10 times over because of its greater number of nuclear weapons, whereas Russia/China could only destroy the US 4 times over. There are probably some leaders in the US that think they are good odds, rather like the General in the film Dr Strangelove General Turgidson: “Mr. President, I’m not saying we wouldn’t get our hair mussed, but I do say no more than 10 to 20 million killed, tops! Uh, depending on the breaks”. The notion that a country which has spent the last two decades fighting a losing battle against the sandal wearing Taliban thinking a war against Russia, China or even Iran could be a winning proposition is lunacy on steroids. Even considering the mine shaft gap.
Maybe the Pentagon planners are writing a script for a sequel to Dr Strangelove, because the characters today are far more convincing, both funnier and scarier than Peter Sellers et al 55 years ago. Pompeo and Pence are ‘end time’ believers who think that Trump might be on a mission from God. Thankfully we have two first class cowards in Commander- in -Chief Donald ‘bone spurs’ Trump and his advisor John Bolton, the former said that his reasons for avoiding service in Vietnam were his feet, and that his personal Vietnam at the time was his ability to avoid sexually Transmitted diseases. John Bolton said “I confess I had no desire to die in a southeast paddy” “I considered the war in Vietnam already lost”, what he probably omitted to say was I am at ease with others going to die in Vietnam, just so long as it is not me. Must not forget Elliot Abrams struggling to get a part in this new production a convicted war criminal who presided over the 1980s ‘dirty war’ era, when US-backed death squads murdered hundreds of thousands in Latin America. You could not make it up.
Trump is acting like a mafia boss, the problem is when one nation big or small decides not to pay ‘protection money’, Germany is continuing with the Nord Stream 2 gas Pipe line despite threats of sanctions, it is not buying the F35 lemon, nor is it contributing 2% of GDP [Trump wants 4%] to NATO. Trump is going ape shit about this, but what can he do?
Turkey are withstanding the threats [so far] by buying Russia’s S400 anti aircraft system, same with India, how long can the Empires credibility be tested before those states get more than a severed horses head placed in their beds? Russia/China and most of the world seem to have the measure of the beast, the US empire is still powerful and can do a lot of harm, what is at stake is the independent sovereignty of and self respect of nations, if that is lost, all is lost. My advice to nations who want to keep their self respect, is when they are told to ‘follow the leader of the free world’ and told to do something that damages the interests of their own country, is to say Go Fuck Yourselves. Diplomatically of course.

wardropper
wardropper

Surely Peter Sellers was scary enough…?
Admittedly, as with most Sellers movies, things do get funny, but Kubrick’s message is, to me, 100% prophetic and shows us more than half a century later exactly what we should be scared of.
Yet the thugs in today’s Washington have probably never even seen the movie, let alone understood its excoriating satire.

wardropper
wardropper

I agree that the damning Chinese criticism quoted above is pretty euphemistic and, yes, generous to the U.S., but the Chinese have, as they say themselves, a long history, and with that come some refinements, like basic diplomacy.
And it’s still a damning criticism.

Frankly, it’s a relief to read amidst our daily rations of American exceptionalism.

Michael Leigh
Michael Leigh

All thanks to lawyer/writer Christopher Black for this ” Global Times ” citation here which surely deserves the ” exceptionally widest ” circulation as it should be published, somehow worldwide throughout every corner of the Globe in whatsoever language and mode is appropiuate, and certainly being filed firstly with the Secretariat of the totality of the UNO General Assembly State membership.

Fair dinkum
Fair dinkum

After the crescendo comes the silence.
Forever.
Hug your loved ones now.