Posts Tagged ‘Strategy’

US Middle East Strategy Makes Sense, Was Not Born Yesterday… Although It Looks Upside Down

January 6, 2020

US FOSSIL FUEL POLICY HAS SWITCHED TO PARTIAL SUPPRESSION… NOT JUST EXPLOITATION.

The strategic interest of the USA is this: that no nuclear armed power emerges outside of the UN Permanent Security Council members (plus Israel, an ally, and the lethal Indo-Pakistani nuclear embrace). Out of the five members, two are parents (not just Allies) of the USA: France and Britain… So they sort of triple US influence. China and Russia, overlording giant empires, have no reason to go to war. 

A second strategic aim of the USA is that no oil and gas comes out of the Middle East, except from powers aligned to and controlled by US-France-Britain… Namely Arabia and Qatar, Kuwait, the UAE. Oil procurement has long been central to US strategy:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2015/01/29/great-bitter-lake/

A third aim is to keep the price of oil and gas just so, neither too low, nor too high, to keep the US fracking industry mighty.

September 1980, Abadan, Iran — An Iraqi soldier watches as the Iranian Abadan refinery, located near the Iraqi border, burns. The Abadan oil refinery was under constant fire from the Iraqi air force during the Iran-Iraq conflict. (Henri Bureau/Sygma/Corbis). US-France-UK did more than encourage Iraq to attack Iran: they collaborated militarily. Superficially it looks like a crusade against the Islamist State of Iran. But there may have been a more sinister aims, later decades would reveal. What is not exposed at first, may be revealed in the fullness of times. As it turns out the West, especially the US, outwitted Iraq. But not just that: the USA outwitted… France (rising the price of oil was fine for the UK, an oil exporter…)

Keeping Iraq (with its giant oil reserves) and Iran down and out achieves this.

The Iran-Iraq war was most helpful to help keep both oil producers out of production, thus strangling countries such as France, while keeping the US and its oilmen happy.  France, highly dependent upon Middle East oil, seems to have understood by 2003 (the UK had its own oil, and Germany no qualms using its dirty coal)… But by then, it was too little, too late.

Now SECULAR Iraq was unfortunately destroyed as an independent power by the USA over the 1990-2003 war (Bush I, Clinton, Bush II). That was definitively to make massive fracking in the USA profitable (and that was implemented by Obama)… Something that propped up the USA as a hyperpower, while bringing the financial plutocracy even higher than “TARP” and QE already had done (all of this under pawn Obama). Partisan of progress can only feel sorry at what happen to Saddam’s Iraq (and Saddam himself said he was baffled, an uncomprehending pawn, to the end…) .

The case of Iran is different from Iraq. Iran is an Islamist State. Progressives can only view it as an enemy. US frackers also view it as an enemy, or rival. The less Iran is powerful, the better it is, for civilization and humanity.

In either case, US strategy, however selfish, makes sense.

Some may object; isn’t in the interest of the US to extract oil from the Middle East? Yes… But not so much that prices will collapse, and, with it, the entire fracking industry… and a part of the banking industry. 

The USA, with Britain, developed Middle East oil, and it was owned by multinationals. However, in recent times, national oil companies have taken over. So the global plutocrats, in the precise realm of fossil fuels, have lost control… when they are not national government actors…

Thus the interest to suppress oil production out of potentially mighty nations… As exploiting it is not possible… 

In any case, the Trump administration’s ministrations with Iraq and Iran may appear new, but they are more of the same… Upside down.

There is plenty enough fossil fuel supply, just now, to make fracking (barely) profitable, and Russia squeezed, just so. (Russia, is the world’s second fossil fuel producer, and is highly dependent upon the cash they provide, differently from the world’s first producer, the US, with its enormous economy…)

Expect more of the same, on a much grander scale, in the distant future. Some day, the US will scream that the planet is dying and one has to go cold turkey on fossil fuels… As by then, the USA will have full replacements, thanks to solar, hydrogen… and thermonuclear. That will make for interesting new adventures…

Patrice Ayme    

 

Elevate The Games Of Thrones

May 23, 2016

Many people told me to watch “Game of Thrones”, that it was like my essays, full of gore and what not. Not to say: why not. A lot of why not. Why not, indeed? “Popular” “cultural” references to “Game of Thrones” are climbing up, I have to stay with the times, to engage in cultural combat.

So I watched Game of Thrones Season 1 and 2. It is indeed entertaining. Some elements of the Feudal moral code are well reproduced. The fact that explicit references to all too well-known world history (such as Christianism and Islamism) do not occur, is much appreciated.

On the other hand, so far, I see no references to religiously motivated human sacrifices, which were ubiquitous in all cults before the rise of writing (and even after, as in the Euro-Mediterranean case of Carthage and the Celts… and a tiny sprinkling of ancient Romans and Greeks).

“Games of Thrones” shows characters who seem to be significantly more complex than is usual in fiction. I read few novels, because I find usual fictional characters very low dimensional, and base, dealing with all too ordinary circumstances.(Although there are exceptions, most notably in sci-fi, of all places.) Reality always beat fiction to a fine pulp, and then burn it to a crisp:

Game of Thrones, The Old Fashion Way: Killing 300,000, to Save Millions. Hiroshima Uranium Bomb Left, Nagasaki, Plutonium Implosion Bomb, Right.

Game of Thrones, The Old Fashion Way: Killing 300,000, to Save Millions. Hiroshima Uranium Bomb Left, Nagasaki, Plutonium Implosion Bomb, Right.

Real history, on the other hand, is full of extremely complex characters, with very complex fates. Athenian history alone provides with many major characters with incredibly rich personalities, who moreover, had a tremendous impact on civilization through their actions: Draco, Solon, Themistocles, Pericles, Alcibiades, Socrates, Xenophon, Plato, Aristotle. The lives of these people were those of superheroes, their fates complex and contradictory. As soon as one digs a bit, one finds other influences (say of major philosophers, some female, on Pericles and Socrates).

“Games of Thrones” is an effort in that direction. Some of the bad guys doing very bad things are actually deep and subtle in their analysis of the world.

The real world is worse than “Games Of Thrones”. Brutus is an example. I confess I did not read Shakespeare about Brutus. Why would I? What did a playwright such as Shakespeare know? Five centuries ago? Not much, and certainly not much beyond what the government of Queen Elizabeth wanted to hear. Because, if that government heard something it did not like, horrible punishments were ready on a whim.

So, to know Brutus, I did not go along the route many of those who claim to be literate have followed. After all, Shakespeare was a mental puppet of Elizabeth government, thus, those who learn the world through Shakespeare, become parrots of the puppet whose string were pulled by more or less virgin tyrant. Learning such teaching by rote is assuredly far removed from mastery of reality.

Not that Elizabeth was a tyrant, for tyranny’s sake, only. Among other contrarieties, she was in a world war with Philippe II, the fascist Catholic emperor of Spain. Spain had conquered the entire world. There was only one problem left: the French army, which, not only defended France, but also the Netherlands.

Subjugating England was going to help. After trying marriage, the Spanish Catholic fundamentalist tyrants tried brute force. England did not have much of an army, especially when comparing to the famous “Spanish Squares”, and did not have much of a fleet. But Sir Francis Drake and his colleagues were skilled, and lucky: they repelled the Gran Armada.

So Elizabeth could not be mild. And Shakespeare respected the lines she drew. (Just as Game of Thrones does!) It is under Queen Elizabeth that the “West Country Men” came to dominate the system of mind that brought British supremacy, and Bush to invade Iraq, to grab the oil (since the Geneva Convention was “quaint”!)

The real history of (Marcus Junius) Brutus was fascinating enough. He was long suspected to be Caesar’s son. But there is worse, and much more telling: Brutus was corrupt. At some point he was governor in Anatolia (present day Turkey), and he filled up his coffers industrially, to the point that he had to be recalled. He also got the trust of Senate in Cyprus, and then abused it by lending money to it at the extortionate rate of 48 percent and by using force to exact its payments.

Thus, Brutus could hardly pose as the moral hero he is often depicted to be. Like his co-conspirator Cassius, greed was probably his main motivation in assassinating Caesar (followed by the moral code of plutocracy, which is that the plutocrats deserve the world, and We The People, the Populares Caesar headed, nothing. Or, let’s say, the fact he did, condemn him in the eyes of history. And, indeed, when the Populus Romanus learned that the leader of the Populares, Caesar, had been treacherously assassinated in the Senate, the entire city of Rome was gloomy.

Caesar was the last, and best hope of the Republic. Some will say: but was not he himself corrupt, and the Senate wanted to charge him with war crimes in Gaul, for waging an extravagant war there, even against historical allies of Rome?

Yes. However, corruption is not as much the problem as what one does with it. The Clintons wanted to be nice to the most aggressive “money changers”, so they could fill their own coffers. Caesar wanted to conquer more than Alexander. As it turned out, that was exactly what the Roman Republic needed at the time.

To launch a huge war to the East, in the Orient, and present day Russia, Caesar needed peace at home, so he needed the sort of reforms the Gracchi had tried to make.

Caesar, though, was naive: he did not anticipate the depth of corruption in the likes of Brutus, who were ready for anything, to keep being able to splurge at the through. This is probably why, after blocking several strikes, Caesar gave up the fight, when he saw Brutus armed with a dagger. Caesar was shattered psychologically, by the extent of the mental corruption in plain evidence.

Thus it is why, when we contemplate corruption, in say the European Union, led by the likes of Jean-Claude Juncker, we have to show no mercy: corruption starts with money, and often ends with murder. The early Obama’s administration “signature strikes” are an example of murder which the (secret) decision of Jimmy Carter, on July 3, 1979, led to. Leading astray can take a while (Obama had the head of the Taliban executed in a drone strike over the weekend: this was not a “signature strike”, but a precise strike against a determined enemy of civilization, perfectly appropriate.

Another perfectly appropriate strike was the atomic bombing of Hiroshima: in tandem with the nuclear strike against Nagasaki, it finished the Second World War in less than a week. Yes tens of thousands of innocent people and children died (plus 35 US prisoners, some butchered in reprisal). However, that was the price of peace. Not dropping the bombs would have extended the war for months, with many millions of all ethnicities killed all over Japan, Korea, China. It also told the Soviets slaves to Stalin that an attack in Europe would bring the annihilation of Russian cities.

The Japanese found themselves in a monstrous war that their own emperor, following the game of throne there, had engaged in. Today, US president Obama goes to Hiroshima. Let all those who feel otherwise, be reminded that the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima is entangled with the vicious war Japanese plutocracy engaged in, during the 1930s. That war itself was an enormous crime, which assassinated more than 30 million people outside of Japan (latest numbers). Few Japanese, relatively speaking, died: around two million soldiers, mostly through disease, and less than one million Japanese civilians (including the spectacular fire bombings of Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and Tokyo).

The nuclear bomb program was launched by the French in January 1938. And the goal was to nuclear bomb Nazi Germany. After a lot of James Bond like action, for real, from France to Norway, the bomb was not ready soon enough to smash Nazi impudence and violence against civilization. However, The Bomb snuffed the top Japanese military arrogance. The top Japanese General had written poems expressing his desire to see one hundred million Japanese lives cut like flowers in bloom. It did not happen because fissioning the atom went straight through Bushido, the art of the Samurai. The emperor on his throne finally had an excuse to brandish the futility of it all (once he was told he could keep… his throne). The top General tried a coup, which failed, and then seppuku, which worked.

Two moral atrocities, the nuclear bombings of Japan, were morally optimal., in the greater scheme of systems of minds. Polls actually support this view, worldwide, and even in Japan, atomic survivor want no apology. Those who should apologize are those who engineered the attack of Japan onto the world (in French Indochina alone, the Japanese military attack killed two millions). And those who support ideas and moods conducive to this sort of aggression. They are the ones who got all these children killed.

We need to change the nature of the game of thrones. Instead of having particular humans sitting on a throne, with considerable powers, after spending a huge amount of energy to get there, we need to learn to sit ideas on a throne, fight for those, and spend considerable energy debating them.

If you want peace, make ideas fight each other, until the best win, until the best win, in the fair fight which makes understanding grow.

Patrice Ayme’

GIVE, SO YOU SHALL GET.

August 21, 2008

THE NEGOCE OF AFGHANISTAN IS OPIATES, SO NEGOTIATE.

(Ten French paratroopers died on August 19, 2008, in an ambush by 150 heavily armed Talibans, an hour east of Kabul. Another 21 got wounded. French troops and Taliban were so close, air strikes could not be conducted. This is typical of the deterioration in Afghanistan, where the West has pursued a mostly purely military strategy. Three days later, in just one NATO aerial strike, seventy six Afghan civilians were killed.)

The current Western strategy in Afghanistan is erroneous. That is why the West cannot win. Bombs from planes and terror from Western stormtroopers examining villages (but not inside the houses) don’t work. To throw more troops in without the correct strategy will only insure a greater defeat (to Moscow’s delight).

The Taliban fights with support from the unenlightened population. As the Taliban liberates terrain, the natives are allowed to enjoy more income from opiates (and that, in turn finances the Taliban).

Euro-America wants the Afghans more enlightened. But that would be a gigantic effort for the Afghan population. So the Afghans need to be given something in exchange for this effort they are begged to engage in.

The only bargaining chip the West has is to legalize the drug trade in the areas NATO controls, because that is the only thing the Afghan population can get that it wants. Legalization of opiates means command and control, and support of the population. One can put pressure on Pakistan, and encourage it to come to its senses. But this forgets a not-so-little detail: Pakistan is a fundamentalist Muslim State. Given this, it’s unlikely that it will deeply change. The same holds for Afghanistan.

Schools are not everything: the rot has to be extricated from the fruit first.

The war between obscurantism (so called “terrorism”) and the West is deep down a war between the West and the literal interpretation of the Qur’an. In 1300 CE Egypt, one could go to jail for “literalism”. Now the West supports fundamentalist Muslim regimes in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Why not Iran, as we are at it?

Instead, the West should make offers to tribal chiefs that they cannot refuse. That should include the drug trade, because that’s the only fast source of cash. The opiate production, once flooding the West could be directed to the pharmaceutical industry (or stored meanwhile, as the legal production of opiates in the West is reduced to compensate for the influx from Afghanistan). In the long run, of course, a half enlightened Afghanistan could grow other things.

(By the way, in case somebody asks, I don’t do drugs, not even alcohol or tobacco, never did. This proposition is purely to help the mentally challenged West in Afghanistan reorient itself according to the most basic common sense: short of exterminating people, one has to negotiate with them; the negoce of Afghanistan is opiates, so that’s it.)

Patrice Ayme.
http://patriceayme.com/

P/S: Some say: “Just make peace, those people are defending themselves, they never hurt a fly, except among themselves, and, besides, they were never conquered, so it’s hopeless, etc.” Then those moralists feel noble, and good about themselves. But are they right? That’s what we mostly want to know.

We will answer some deeper questions connected to this pacifist point of view in another essay, but let’s point out this:

0) I view my point of view as pacifist, simply the timescale I use is very large. 

1) Alexander the Great’s Macedonians (33O BCE), Islam and the Mongols conquered Afghanistan durably.

2) We are not after the Afghans, but after a system of thought, literal Quranist Islam.

3) That system of thought is intrinsically fascist, and fascism is best killed in the egg, and far away.

4) JUST AS WAR CAN MAKE PEACE, PEACE CAN MAKE WAR. Peace at all cost is another word for war.

5) Licit opiates production occurs in Spain, Australia, France, Turkey and India.

6) After writing the preceding, I came across the article on the drug trade in Afghanistan in Wikipedia. It concurs with my views. Here is an extract: “A licensing system would bring farmers and villages into a supportive relationship with the Afghan government, instead of alienating the population by destroying their livelihood, and provide the economic diversification that could help cultivators break ties with the illicit opium trade.

 The International Narcotics Control Board states that an over production in licit opiates since 2000 has led to stockpiles in producing countries ‘that could cover demand for two years’. Thus, some say Afghan opium would contribute to an already oversupplied market and would potentially cause the supply and demand imbalance that the UN control system was designed. However, the World Health Organisation points out that there is an acute global shortage of poppy-based medicines such as morphine and codeine.”

7) Pashtuns are on both sides of the frontier with Pakistan. Maybe a process towards a Kosovo like solution could be implemented, as an other bargaining chip for the 42 million Pashtuns? 

***


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ianmillerblog

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

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Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

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