Predicting the Future in the Middle East 
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Predicting the Future in the Middle East

Predicting the Future in the Middle East

By: Karen Kwiatkowski

by Karen Kwiatkowski

Seduced by the soothing intravenous drip of socialism at home, and swaddled in an unresolvable debt that Congress has denied and forgotten, the thoughts of the U.S. political class turn to … wait for it ... the rest of the world.  What can the American political class do in the Middle East and elsewhere?  What will be their historical role? How can we spread “democracy” and freedom to more and more people, how can we create more countries that we can entice into Western debt and military slavery, and destroy more countries that we do not like because we have the brute force, and because it creates bigger markets for our one large export industry? See, it’s not so bad at home.  Trust us, we can still, in the 21st century, be the kingmakers. 


An obsession with “what the world will say” twenty or thirty years from now is a clear sign of a sclerotic American political class riding our out-of-control parasitic government like Major “King” Kong on a missile to oblivion.  Except this time, it won’t be Slim Pickens on a movie reel, it will be slim pickings for everyone living in the post-imperial phase of what was once a great Republic.

After his presentation in the 2004 Libertarian Party Convention in Atlanta, I asked Neil Boortz how he could justify or rationalize the invasion of Iraq the previous year.   Over a year after the invasion, even the mainstream media had begun to report that there was no WMD and no al Qaeda in Iraq, and that sorry, umm, actually, Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11. Oops.   I will never forget what Boortz told me.  “In twenty years, the Iraq invasion will be seen as a great and wise decision by the Bush administration, and good for America.”

Allrighty, then!  Let us talk a bit about history, and how history looks at American foreign policy in the Middle East.

The early 21st century is not the turning point in U.S. policy around the world and especially in the Middle East.  The political class and many academics believe that September 11th, 2001 was a watershed, but in fact, our invasions of both Afghanistan and Iraq were extensions of long-practiced foreign policy in the Middle East.  The selective U.S. Government support of the House of Saud began at least as early as the 1940s, and the 1953 CIA Operation Ajax, the overthrow of the popularly elected Iranian Prime Minister Mossaddegh and his replacement with American puppet shah was indicative of many operations the CIA had conducted and would continue to conduct around the world.  

The Carter Doctrine was articulated as a political framework in response to OPEC strikes in the 1970s (which were, in part, a reaction to both US meddling and inflationary dollar policies after Republican President Nixon eliminated the last vestiges of a gold standard).   For public consumption, the Carter Doctrine was a reaction to the 1979 revolution in Iran, finally overthrowing the hated American allied dictator, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.  Fast forward a decade, the Soviet Union is collapsing, and peace is breaking out uncontrollably, and by 1990, U.S. policy was updated to topple Saddam Hussein and move on up from Saudi Arabia as a military hub.    We get the first Gulf War, replete with the kind of official government lies and obedient media repetition of them that we would see again and again.   In between that war, we remained at war with Iraq, bombing the country daily, restricting trade of basic food, commodities, consumer goods and technology, creating a shadow government abroad to replace Hussein, building up U.S. military forces to the south in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman, and to the north via permanent bases in the former Yugoslavia (incidentally a basing concept and a war we were involved in thanks to Democratic President Clinton). 

Meanwhile, we gave what would accumulate to over a trillion dollars to Israel over the years " without gaining either basing rights or a compliant government.  We gave billions to Egypt for her passivity and billions more to Pakistan for her provocative capacity.   In both of these cases and many more in the region, the money bought a mostly submissive ally in the ruling governments, while quietly enraging their citizenry and exposing American hypocrisy and fundamental interests of destabilizing conflict and oil advantage.   

History can be boring, and who needs to be reminded, right?  Happily, we are nearly to the present day.   All that money printing, and all that puppetry and commodity market manipulation through war and pseudo-defense promises to friendly oil producers in the region has, like so many chickens, come home to roost.   We now witness global inflation, and see rich governments armed to the teeth, yet precariously perched over millions of impoverished and angry people.  To get the loans, developing countries around the world needed to embrace socialism, because as always, “it’s for the children” and “it’s what the people want.”  And the Middle East certainly did embrace socialism, in the process destroying shared concepts of property rights, lowering expectations of rule of law, raising expectations of nanny state obligations, and being taught that governments they had were noble, necessary and good.  This combination of depravation, demoralization and damned lies has morphed into what may only be seen as anti-slavery movements that governments simply cannot control or kill. 

The results?  Beyond the militarization of the Middle East, and hundreds of expensive, despised and largely ineffective U.S. military installations scattered across the region, we see three main results, none of which are good for the United States political class, even as they lead the charge in making these things happen. 

First, nobody loves the petrodollar and that fact is panicking our central bank, and those banks and elites that rely on it around the world.  The invasion of Iraq, the continuous targeting of Iran, the U.S. sponsorship of Saudi and Kuwaiti rulers, and the recent war on Libya have all been traced back to a motive of eliminating talk or pursuit of alternatives to the dollar for oil and for trading in general.  For average people, the dollar itself has become a symbol of a government the vast majority of common people in the region despise and hold in contempt.

Second, new imperial power brokers are emerging in the region, and they are mainly Chinese.  This is hugely frightening to the U.S. government and the American political class.  Imagining a 20th century style war with China, they attempt to cage or compete with Chinese influence in the region as a rationale for our bloated and obscene defense budget.  But the real challenge is our own brand of 21st century national socialism at home, and its intense dependence on Chinese-held U.S. debt. 

Thirdly, our old bought and paid for allies in the region are collapsing and being replaced by far less manageable ones, and our efforts to create new balancing states isn’t exactly working out as planned.   This third main impact has two parts:  choosing and manipulating the governments of regional players, and the creation of new states to “assist” and control.   Today, we are seeing the unforecasted loss of satraps.  We tired of Saddam Hussein, after assisting him within the Ba-ath Party hierarchy and trading him arms and anthrax for weakening Iran in a long and pointless border war.   We worked vigorously with the Taliban from Kabul in the late 1990s and early 2000 until it became clear the pipelines would not be built as we wished, and the heroin trade really was drying up due to their religious prohibitions.   The invasion in late 2001 had already been planned before the terror attacks of 9/11, in which Osama bin Laden was never charged, about which denied his involvement, and in which no Afghans participated.   

But today it is very different. Only a few months ago, friendly dictator Ben Ali fled Tunisia and the U.S. government was surprised and unprepared, and almost didn’t believe it.  Then the uprising in Egypt caused the U.S. government to make a late endorsement of the Arab street, and a mild rebuke of longtime ally and special friend Mubarak.  Bahrain, Yemen, uprisings in Saudi Arabia and Libya we all heard about.  By the time Syrian crowds began to rise against Assad, the United States (and Israel) were ready to foment the cause, and make use of the citizen’s anger. We heard nothing at all in the western press about simultaneous uprisings in Iraq and Oman, but they also broke out and continue to happen in the countries where there are large U.S. military installations.  In Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Iraq, the U.S. supported the satraps, helping directly or indirectly to maintain state order, manage media coverage, and intimidate protesters.

The second part of the ally development strategy is the balkanization of existing states in the region, with projections of Iraq divided along ethnic/religious lines, and Afghanistan divided along ethnic or clan lines. These two cases have been obvious for some time, and smaller states philosophically are not necessarily a bad thing " unless they are engineered, bribed, threatened, or otherwise manipulated by other countries and are as artificial as the original states formed by the Europeans and Americans after World War I.   But this part of the strategy " weak state creation " goes beyond the false but widely accepted concept of nation building, and seems to be a desperate choice now being applied by the U.S. (and supported by Israel as a strong regional player) across the region. 

Beyond the spinoff potential of Iraq and Afghanistan, we see the upcoming division of Sudan into a Muslim north and a Christian and animist south, something the United States welcomes because our government will be financially supporting and looking for oil in the new potentially oil rich country.  U.S. support for secession of oil rich sectors of countries is again seen in the recent attacks in Libya by France and the U.S. and the quick welcome of a division of that country along east/west lines, with the rebels the U.S. government is supporting holding much of the oil territory.  It is not coincidence that we sent a Libyan who had been living just down the street from CIA headquarters back to Libya to “lead” the rebels, and that we are quickly “recognizing the banking and oil sales capacity of these rebels.  Will the next division be a return to North and South Yemen?    That country is running out of oil, but has natural gas reserves, and what a wonderful place to place a U.S. Naval base, and possibly an air logistics center, if the country collapses and we can co-opt one of the smaller divisions in return for arms, pallets of cash, and loan guarantees.   This divide and conquer strategy is certainly an old one, and it is the way of empire, that of the U.S. and it is also reflected in some versions of the modern Israel story.  

For all the treasure and blood invested in the Middle East, for all the corporate and diplomatic back room deals and Rube Goldberg banking schemes, what we have today in the Middle East, from a United States perspective, are the collapsing dollar, a spread-out military posed superficially to defend against the Chinese or Chinese interests in the region. But as the Chinese control the funding for that expensive United States military, it’s already “Check.”  The panicked U.S. effort to “get more countries,” from which to geographically grab oil control and manage oil flows, is a last ditch effort to win the strategic game.  But the pawns we have now, and the pawns Washington may seek to gain cannot outmaneuver the more practical and long term trade-oriented Chinese approach. 

I wonder if the Chinese approach in the Middle East today is largely what our own approach would have been in the early 19th century?  Are the Chinese, as Jefferson wrote, seeking "Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations " entangling alliances with none?"   I am not suggesting here that the Chinese share our American founder’s traditions, because they absolutely do not.  But fundamental truth does not change across the ages, or across cultures and traditions.  Truth be known, peace, commerce and honest friendship, and avoiding personal, emotional, religious and financial entanglements with other nations are a recipe for independence and economic success in any country.

 

Freedom to trade, and freedom from being dictated to by other nations, or even interested powerful groups within a country, are priceless.  The United States no longer has that freedom at a international level.  That powerlessness is what we see today in the U.S. overarching Middle East strategy. Knowing this, American taxpayers might be interested in no longer throwing good money after bad, and bad money after worse.

 

If we understand the past and present U.S. strategy in the Middle East, we can begin to better understand the United States government itself. Periodic and weak demands in Congress for a “new” or “better” energy policy, and “energy independence” are smokescreens for the real problem, and hide the real lusts of the bankster and political classes.   Freedom is the answer, not co-optation and billions of dollars in more enslaving debt, as predictably, President Obama and the G8 casually promised to the new Egyptian leadership.   Given what we know about the past and present, the future is relatively clear for the Middle East.  If I could advise the new governments, given the impending collapse of the dollar, I’d say, “Take the money, invest in commodities, and quickly repudiate both the debt and dollar.  You won’t get more loans, but our money’s no good anyway.  Might your countries be attacked by the U.S. as a result as did Iraq, and Libya?  Perhaps, but in part due to American policies in the Middle East, there are many of you, and few of us.”  

The real problems Americans should be concerned about, and indeed many are, is the unsustainable government, the unsustainable socialism, and the unsustainable empire the United States has created for itself in the past 100 years.  These conditions will ultimately destroy us, and like a bad case of gangrene, have already destroyed much of the rule of law, the ideals of freedom, and the Constitutional protections from government that the founders understood were fundamental for a free people and a free republic.  If we can learn anything from our adventurism and manipulation in the Middle East, and most recently, Obama’s unconstitutional and executive decision to go to war with yet another country, without rationale or apology, with a predictable passive Congressional “blessing”, it is that our own nation is in serious decline, and that we share a bleak condition of servitude and slavery to the United States government with the peoples of the Middle East, and around the world.
 
 

  


 
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