Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Peak Of The Oil Wars - 11

"The Kremlin didn't see NATO expansion
to Russia's borders as benign."
A once well-known journalist, John T. Flynn, wrote a book in 1944 titled "As We Go Marching" (PDF).

In that book, he wrote that he had observed the essence of U.S. and British foreign policy: "The enemy aggressor is always pursuing a course of larceny, murder, rapine and barbarism. We are always moving forward with high mission, a destiny imposed by the Deity to regenerate our victims, while incidentally capturing their markets; to civilise savage and senile and paranoid peoples, while blundering accidentally into their oil wells" (page 222).

The religious self-righteous notion that "if we do it is ok, but if they do it that is not right" still permeates U.S. and NATO foreign policy to this very day, now plaguing us in what we are seeing as the Ukrainian folly.

To the last several U.S. Presidents, that anomaly was known as American Exceptionalism, even though "holier than thou" really does not have a place in a nation that touts the separation of church and state.

There are Central European people who think of this policy, as it is being manifested by NATO strategists, as ill mannered:
The downing of MH17 did not start the process of dysfunction, and neither did its incubating Ukrainian crisis; these are symptoms of the failure of nationalist entities to govern. The main crisis - gripping the entire region - is reducible to the inability of post-Soviet nations – some with little or no experience of independent statehood – to properly function in place of the collapsed multinational federation. And the only truly viable solution is a reintegration programme. This is not to advocate the return of Russian privilege in a neo-Soviet Union. Rather, there needs to be an integration programme of equals so that no voices are drowned and no interests eclipsed. No integration means no stability.

The crisis following MH17 is producing an avalanche of pundits' opinions and bloggary that run counter to this message and reveals how little people understand about the processes that run in the post-Soviet space. Calls to punish Russia, introduce more sanctions and, at the extreme even militarily help Ukraine, will not be productive in ending 20 years of regional chaos, cronyism and bad governance. These policy suggestions - if adopted - will only create further, more intractable problems.

Any significant cooperation within the post-Soviet space, which excludes Russia, leads to crises and there are numerous cases of Russia’s conflicts, economic, energy, and military - in 2004, 2006, 2008, and now in 2014 - which strongly suggest such a tendency. In other words, do not neglect Russia, include it in all initiatives, and prioritise its economic benefits instead of political values and ideological narratives. Russia needs a voice at the table, otherwise it will muscle in by force.

What is left out these days is the art of statecraft; enlightened, realist-based diplomatic bargaining, which may be one of the reasons for today’s open confrontation in Ukraine. It may not be a coincidence, that currently the world is lacking true statesmen but is governed by politicians instead.
(Ukraine: Reflecting on the Downing of Flight MH17, emphasis added). The wrong-wing lunatics, who fancy themselves capable of mentoring presidents, call civilized behavior "isolationism", while they try to isolate Russia from the European Community by threat of force of arms (their hypocrisy knows no bounds).

Regular readers know that Dredd Blog touched upon the very old and rotting roots of this policy recently (The Peak Of The Oil Wars - 10), indicating that more would be said of the Ukraine crisis later in this series ("more in future posts").

After Presidents Reagan and Gorbachev did some statesman like interaction in foreign policy, it was not long until officials following them in time and sequence began to dismantle their good deeds:
Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev agreed to allow the unification of Germany and its membership in NATO, a hostile military alliance. In the light of recent history, this was a most astonishing concession. There was a quid pro quo. President [Bush I] and Secretary of State James Baker agreed that NATO would not expand “one inch to the East,” meaning into East Germany. Instantly, they expanded NATO to East Germany.

Gorbachev was naturally outraged, but when he complained, he was instructed by Washington that this had only been a verbal promise, a gentleman’s agreement, hence without force. If he was naïve enough to accept the word of American leaders, it was his problem.
(Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch - 2, quoting Noam Chomsky). They don't call it a "theatre of war" without "reason."

After all, it is composed of propaganda-driven theatrics mixed with drama queen machinations.

The president who followed later in the election-driven lineage also believed that the show must go on:
For Tuchman [author of "The March of Folly"], these mistakes were examples of folly, which she defined as "the pursuit by governments of policies contrary to their own interests." It is, she added, "a phenomenon noticeable throughout history regardless of place or period."

The Clinton administration's campaign to expand NATO into Eastern Europe once again proves that Tuchman was on to something. Last July, at a NATO summit in Madrid, Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic were invited to join the alliance, a process that is expected to be concluded by 1999, NATO's fiftieth anniversary. All three countries were Soviet allies in the defunct Warsaw Pact.

The administration has repeatedly stated that these countries will not be the last ones admitted to the alliance.
(Joining The March of Folly, emphasis added). This ill-advised policy is described by observers in one of our allied nations:
However unsettling, Russia's actions are not irrational. In many ways they are the foreseeable reaction to the West's decisions since the collapse of the Soviet Empire, writes Tom Switzer.

The conventional wisdom among western pundits and politicians says the Ukrainian crisis is entirely Vladimir Putin's fault and the West is blameless.

Russia's military incursion in Crimea, warns the Wall Street Journal, is a "blitzkrieg" that "brings the threat of war to the heart of Europe". Putin, according to Hillary Clinton is acting just like Hitler in the late 1930s. Moscow, editorialises the Financial Times, has started a "new Cold War". Now, it is widely argued, President Barack Obama must get tough with the Kremlin and intensify political, economic and strategic relations with the new Ukrainian Government.

Throughout this crisis, however, there has been very little attempt to take into account Russia's susceptibilities and its attempt to protect what it perceives as its vital strategic interests. If anything, as several distinguished professors of international relations, such as John Mearsheimer (Chicago University) and Stephen Walt (Harvard University), have made clear, this crisis stems from decisions made by Washington and Brussels since the collapse of the Soviet Empire more than two decades ago.

Start with the expansion of NATO eastwards and Washington's decision to deploy ballistic missile defences in Russia's neighbourhood.
(The West Poked The Russian Bear, emphasis added). The criticism comes from a lot of places, including the Foreign Affairs website:
In 2014, Western officials are learning about their strategic errors the hard way. They have come to realize that NATO’s collective defense mission in Europe is still vital because Russia is in the business of changing international borders by force, that NATO never had to go “out of area” for a compelling mission, that the Kremlin didn’t see NATO expansion to Russia’s borders as benign, and that NATO missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya cost a great deal in lives and money but they only achieved mixed results.
The second major change in NATO policy, starting in the 1990s, was the adoption of a new array of global missions to justify NATO’s continued existence. The rationale was that NATO’s European members would have to help Washington with its global concerns to keep the United States committed to Europe.

This strategic reasoning was based on several flawed assumptions. First, the global interests of the United States and Europe were not (and are not) in alignment.
(NATO's Biggest Mistake, emphasis added). A google search on "the Kremlin didn’t see NATO expansion to Russia’s borders as benign" leads to many other places with the same results.

In the end, Russia got the mine (Black Sea Oil) but NATO and the U.S. got the shaft, because one size does not fit all when it comes to foreign policy.

The previous post in this series is here.

"The Front Fell Off"

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

On The Origin of The Bully Religion - 4

Evolution from left to right wrong
The wrong-wing Israeli government has learned its bully ways from Western Culture's imperialistic ideology.

The now-murderous regime has learned the bully religion well horribly (Origin of the Classic Nuclear Bully, 2).

In recent times this schooling comes primarily from the high priests of U.S. military doctrine (The Dogma of The High Priest In Chief, 2, 3); a military doctrine that teaches, in The War College (The Intellectual War Monger, 2), that war is an art (Is War An Art or Is War A Disease?, 2), and even better worse, that war is a religion (Bully Worship: The Universal Religion, 2, 3, 4, 5).

Western Civilization's behavior in the mid-east over the past century of oil wars chronicles what happens when psychopathic cultures have children who then form gangs to protect turf, flash gang-signs, and amass weapons of mass destruction (The Peak Of The Oil Wars - 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1).
Gaza is a Prison. Children there are being Bombed.

While talking about peace.

The old religious adage of "an eye for an eye" has become "a thousand eyes for an eye" as Israeli foreign policy morphs from sociopathic to psychopathic, yes, as one murder morphs into a thousand murders.

As women and children become enemies, therefore soldiers, then corpses (NBC, Al Jazeera America).

Meanwhile, the war whores (The War Whores Ride The War Horse) are calling for a more sexy form of mayhem while the prestitutes (In the Fog of The Presstitutes, 2, 3) clamour for more blood and guts so their very low ratings in the polls can improve.

Meanwhile, civilization is on suicide watch (Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch, 2), and the doomsday clock increasingly has a bias towards lights out (Doomsday Clock).

The previous post in this series is here.

Monday, July 28, 2014

When Indoctrination Is Enlightenment - 5

Obama I
When a person suffers a head injury that causes a swelling of the brain, sometimes doctors will induce a coma, so as to reduce the pressure and therefore minimize damage to the brain.

A trance is said to be half conscious ("a half-conscious state, seemingly between sleeping and waking, in which ability to function voluntarily may be suspended"), while a medical dictionary mixes a coma trance with a lethargic hypnosis, sometimes called a trance coma, all of which are designed to modify consciousness in one degree or another.

In this series we are considering the concept of indoctrination in the same light as the concept of propaganda.

Both can be used as instrumentalities for doing the same thing, altering your consciousness, but not necessarily for any good medical reason (see This Is Your Brain On Propaganda, 2, 3, 4, 5).

In recent years the usage of both propaganda and indoctrination have been most intense when it comes to global warming induced climate change.

Whether the particular indoctrination / propaganda is used to cover up the century old oil wars (The Peak Of The Oil Wars - 10), or to cover up the mutually assured human extinction that the continued use of fossil fuels will bring (Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch), the effort by government to deceive the population is furious (MOMCOM: The Private Parts, 2, 3, 4, 5, The Deceit Business - 3).

One of the examples of the trance-coma-hypnosis dynamic involves a notion of replacing coal and oil with "natural" gas:
The fossil fuel industry and their allies have spent the past 20 years attacking environmentalists and climate scientists as extremists, alarmists, and hysterics. Their publicists have portrayed them as hair-shirt wearing, socialist watermelons (green on the outside, red on the inside) who relish suffering, kill jobs, and want everyone to freeze in the dark. Extremists do exist in the environmental movement as everywhere else, but they represent a tiny faction of the community of people concerned about climate change, and they are virtually nonexistent in the scientific community. (Put it this way: if there is a hair-shirt wearing climate scientist, I have not met her.)

While the accusations may be false, that doesn’t mean they don’t affect our thinking. Too often, environmentalists find ourselves trying to prove that we are not what they say we are: not irredeemable anti-business job-killers. We bend over backwards to seek out acceptable compromises and work with business leaders, even to the point of finding a fossil fuel that we can love (or at least like).

And that leads to the wishful thinking. We want to find solutions, or at least meaningful steps in the right direction, that command widespread support. We want gas to be good. (I know I did.)
Insanity is sometimes defined as doing the same thing but expecting a different result. Psychologists define perseveration as repetitive behavior that interferes with learning. Whatever we call it, that seems to be what is happening. And whatever it is, it doesn’t make sense. Natural gas is not the bridge to clean energy; it’s the road to more climate change.
(Tom Dispatch, Dr. Naomi Oreskes, emphasis added). When those who have the power are the most ignorant, human extinction is "on the table" at all times:
Natural gas is falsely promoted by the Obama Administration and energy corporations as a “bridge fuel” that will allow American society to continue to use fossil energy over the coming decades while emitting fewer greenhouse gases than from using other fossil fuels such as coal and oil.

On this basis, President Obama is providing total support to a massive expansion of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) for natural gas within the U.S. He seeks sufficient quantities to last for many decades, allowing the U.S. to export liquefied natural gas and oil throughout the world.
We have to control methane immediately, and natural gas is the largest methane pollution source in the United States,” said Howarth, who explains that Earth may reach the point of no return if average global temperatures rise by 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius in future decades. “If we hit a climate-system tipping point because of methane, our carbon dioxide problem is immaterial. We have to get a handle on methane, or
increasingly risk global catastrophe.”….

“While emissions of carbon dioxide are less from natural gas than from coal and oil, methane emissions are far greater. Methane is such a potent greenhouse gas that these emissions make natural gas a dangerous fuel from the standpoint of global warming over the next several decades. Society should wean ourselves from all fossil fuels and not rely on the myth that natural gas is an acceptable bridge fuel to a sustainable future.”
(Global Research, emphasis added). It is time that we lose the indoctrination about al-Qaeda terrorists, which is a propaganda storm, to focus on the real threat to our security and well being: Oil-Qaeda.

The previous post in this series is here.

Crazy on You 
by Heart

We may still have time
We might still get by
Every time I think about it I want to cry
With the bombs and the devils
And the kids keep coming
Nowhere to breathe easy
no time to be young

But I tell myself that I'm doing alright
There's nothing left to do tonight
but go crazy on you
crazy on you
let me go crazy, crazy on you

My love is the evening breeze touching your skin
The gentle sweet singing of leaves in the wind
The whisper that calls, after you in the night
And kisses your ear in the early light ... yeah

And you don't need to wonder, you're doing fine
And my love, the pleasure's mine
go crazy on you
crazy on you
Let me go crazy, crazy on you

Wild man's world is crying in pain
What you gonna do when everybody's insane
So afraid of fortune, so afraid of you
What you gonna do?
awwww oooohhhhh

crazy on you, 
let me go crazy, crazy on you

I was willow last night in my dream
I bent down over a clear running stream
I sang you the song that i heard up above
And you kept me alive with your sweet flowing love
let me go crazy, crazy on you
Crazy, crazy on you,
Let me go crazy, crazy on you

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch - 2

Both "hopium" and "doomium" seem to be addictive
Some conservatives and liberals are concerned about human extinction.

In general, at this time conservatives are not concerned about human extinction via anthropogenic global warming.

While conservatives are less sure about global warming dangers, some prominent ones are quite concerned about nuclear war, as are some prominent liberals, thus, the nuclear war threat can be said to be a bipartisan concern, which has been expressed by both Noam Chomsky and Paul Craig Roberts.

Together they have expert experience in Education and Government prior to becoming activists.

One of them unambiguously wrote recently:
European governments and the Western media have put the world at risk by enabling Washington’s propaganda and aggression against Russia.

Washington has succeeded in using transparent lies to demonize Russia as a dangerous aggressive country led by a new Hitler or a new Stalin, just as Washington succeeded in demonizing Saddam Hussein in Iraq, the Taliban in Afghanistan, Qaddafi in Libya, Assad in Syria, Chavez in Venezuela, and, of course, Iran.

The real demons–Clinton, Bush, Obama–are “the exceptional and indispensable people” above the reach of demonization. Their horrific real crimes go unnoticed, while fictitious crimes are attributed to the unexceptional and dispensable people and countries.

The reason that Washington demonizes a leader and a country is to permit the creation of circumstances that Washington can use to act with force against a leader and a country.

Washington’s incessant lies alleging “Russian aggression” have created Russian aggression out of thin air. John Kerry and the State Department’s Marie Harf issue new lies daily, but never any supporting evidence. With the stage set, the US Senate, the NATO commander and the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff are busy at work energizing the wheels of war.
(The World Is Doomed, Paul Craig Roberts, emphasis added). Professor Chomsky also notes that the U.S. has been provocative in Europe:
Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev agreed to allow the unification of Germany and its membership in NATO, a hostile military alliance. In the light of recent history, this was a most astonishing concession. There was a quid pro quo. President Bush and Secretary of State James Baker agreed that NATO would not expand “one inch to the East,” meaning into East Germany. Instantly, they expanded NATO to East Germany.

Gorbachev was naturally outraged, but when he complained, he was instructed by Washington that this had only been a verbal promise, a gentleman’s agreement, hence without force. If he was naïve enough to accept the word of American leaders, it was his problem.

All of this, too, was routine, as was the silent acceptance and approval of the expansion of NATO in the U.S. and the West generally. President Bill Clinton then expanded NATO further, right up to Russia’s borders. Today, the world faces a serious crisis that is in no small measure a result of these policies.
On the issue of nuclear weapons, the record is similarly interesting -- and frightening. It reveals very clearly that, from the earliest days, the security of the population was a non-issue, and remains so. There is no time here to run through the shocking record, but there is little doubt that it strongly supports the lament of General Lee Butler, the last commander of the Strategic Air Command, which was armed with nuclear weapons. In his words, we have so far survived the nuclear age “by some combination of skill, luck, and divine intervention, and I suspect the latter in greatest proportion.” And we can hardly count on continued divine intervention as policymakers play roulette with the fate of the species in pursuit of the driving factors in policy formation.

As we are all surely aware, we now face the most ominous decisions in human history. There are many problems that must be addressed, but two are overwhelming in their significance: environmental destruction and nuclear war. For the first time in history, we face the possibility of destroying the prospects for decent existence -- and not in the distant future. For this reason alone, it is imperative to sweep away the ideological clouds and face honestly and realistically the question of how policy decisions are made, and what we can do to alter them before it is too late.
(Whose Security?, Noam Chomsky, emphasis added). The madness naturally brings out the wisdom of those who are very concerned:
In an article published by Op-Ed News, Eric Zuesse supports my reports of indications that Washington is preparing for a nuclear first strike against Russia.

US war doctrine has been changed. US nuclear weapons are no longer restricted to a retaliatory force, but have been elevated to the role of preemptive nuclear attack. Washington pulled out of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with Russia and is developing and deploying an ABM shield. Washington is demonizing Russia and Russia’s President with shameless lies and propaganda, thus preparing the populations of the US and its client states for war with Russia.

Washington has been convinced by neoconservatives that Russian strategic nuclear forces are in run down and unprepared condition and are sitting ducks for attack. This false belief is based on out-of-date information, a decade old, such as the argument presented in “The Rise of U.S. Nuclear Primacy” by Keir A. Lieber and Daryl G. Press in the April 2006 issue of Foreign Affairs, a publication of the Council on Foreign Relations, an organization of American elites.

Regardless of the condition of Russian nuclear forces, the success of Washington’s first strike and degree of protection provided by Washington’s ABM shield against retaliation, the article I posted by Steven Starr, “The Lethality of Nuclear Weapons,” makes clear that nuclear war has no winners. Everyone dies.
(US Beating Nuclear War Drums, emphasis added). Perhaps we should revisit The Most Dangerous Moment in Recorded History, Self Assured Destruction ("A nuclear war between Russia and the United States ... could produce a nuclear winter ... could be suicidal, resulting in self-assured destruction"), and The Lethality of Nuclear Weapons.

The previous post in this series is here.