Friday, September 12, 2008

Masters of Defeat: Retreating Empire and Bellicose Bluster

By James Petras

"Everywhere one looks, US imperial policy has suffered major military and diplomatic defeats. With the backing of the Democratic Congress, the Republican White House’s aggressive pursuit of a military approach to empire-building has led to a world-wide decline of US influence, the realignment of former client rulers toward imperial adversaries, the emergence of competing hegemons and loss of crucial sources of strategic raw materials.....


The economic crisis in the run up to the Presidential elections has not led to the emergence of a mass based progressive alternative candidate. Both the Democratic and Republican contenders promise to prolong and extend the imperial wars and submit to unprecedented Israeli-Zionist military dictates with regard to Iran.

Crises and military defeats have not led to a re-thinking of global economic and military commitments. Instead we witness a right-wing radicalization, which seeks to escalate confrontations with China, Russia and Iran. The US draws in its wake the client regimes of Eastern Europe and the Caucasus and Baltic regions to counter Western Europe’s emphasis on ‘economic-centered’ empire building.

The reality of a multi-polarized economic world however undermines US efforts to impose a bipolar military confrontation. China holds $1.2 trillion dollars in US debt. Western Europe, in general, depends on over one-third of its energy for its homes, offices and factories from Russia. Germany relies on Russia for almost 60% of its gas. The economies of Asia: Japan, India, China, Vietnam and South Korea all depend on oil from the Middle East and not on the Middle East war plans of the Israeli-American militarists.

Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, Venezuela and Iran are essential to the functioning of the world economy. In the same way that the US-Israel-United Kingdom cannot support their empire on the bases of failed military strategies abroad and economic disaster and police state policies at home."

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