ALTO RIO GUAMA INDIGENOUS TERRITORY, Brazil — A bit after sunrise, dozens of Indigenous Tembé men began preparing for the important day ahead. They danced, chanted and donned matching black T-shirts before setting off on motorbikes into Brazil’s Amazon forest.
Self-declared “forest guardians,” their aim was to find and expel illegal loggers and miners within their territory on the eastern edge of Brazil’s Para state. Emblazoned on their T-shirts was their group’s name — Ka’Azar, which in their language means “Owners of the Forest.”
“For a long time, since I was born, I heard my father and the elders talk about the need to fight the loggers in our lands,” said Ronaldo Tembé, a 21-year-old member of the 40-man patrol. “We are trying to combat deforestation within our reserve, which is becoming increasingly precarious.”
Ain’t gonna happen. The Republicans are completely in thrall to the armaments industries, petroleum industry, the Israel Lobby, and the Saudi Lobby. The Christian Zionists are their most loyal voting block. For the Republicans, Washington, DC is basically just West Tel Aviv or West Riyadh.
The money quote:
Because most Americans are self-centered and unconcerned about brown people in other nations, it’s ridiculous yet necessary to remind you that the Afghans we bomb are real people like you and me, that Iraqis are scarred for life when their children are hobbled by American bullets, that Yemenis cry for their dead blown to bits by American missiles, that our insane decision to turn Libya from the most prosperous country in Africa into a failed state with 21st century slave auctions is an atrocity, that we have murdered hundreds of thousands of innocent people in the last couple of decades for no reason that can be justified under common sense or international law.
By Ted Rall
New York – U.S. President Donald Trump is terrible. Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is just as bad. In some ways he is worse. You shouldn’t vote for either one.
Trump is erratic and unpredictable, which is dangerous. Even so, Biden is worse than Trump on international relations.
By Caitlin Johnstone
Whenever I criticize the foreign policy of the current US administration, I always get some pushback from Trump supporters who insist that this president is doing more good than harm by “fighting the Deep State” and, even more commonly, by “keeping us out of wars”.
This notion that Donald Trump is some kind of peace president, or even the notion that he puts any more inertia on the US war machine than his predecessor did, is contradicted by all facts and evidence we have available to us. Trump has not ended a single one of the wars his predecessors started, and has added dangerous escalations against Venezuela, Iran, and nuclear-armed Russia.
One of the difficulties in addressing this persistent myth, besides the obvious fact that everyone now lives in tightly cloistered information echo chambers of confirmation bias-feeding validation loops, is that the myth is in some ways bipartisan. Whenever Trump mumbles one of his empty appeals to non-interventionist principles, his supporters lap it up while half of the Democrats start attacking the president for being insufficiently hawkish. Trump’s talk about withdrawing from Syria is a perfect example of this; the troops are still there, but Dems attacked him for irresponsible “isolationist” behavior and his supporters got their fairy tale about their president ending wars. Everyone gets what they want, including the military-industrial complex that Trump pretends to oppose.
By Derek Davison and Alex Thurston
The liberal establishment is desperate to return a centrist to the White House in November and reestablish the country’s more stable military dominance of the world order, disrupted only briefly by Donald Trump. Joe Biden’s terrible track record on foreign policy — including his championing of war in Iraq — suggests a return to Obama-style strong military interventions abroad.
To the consternation of many on the Left, Joe Biden formally secured the Democratic Party’s nomination yesterday. And if polling both nationally and in several key battleground states is accurate, he stands a reasonable chance of defeating Donald Trump to become the 46th president of the United States. As voters consider their options this fall, and as leftists prepare to navigate the next four years, it is reasonable to fast forward a bit to examine what a potential Biden administration might look like.
By Caitlin Johnstone
People who dislike Trump are often reluctant to talk about this, but it looks likely that a Biden administration would be more warlike than its predecessor.
In a recent interview with US Department of Defense newspaper Stars and Stripes, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said it’s important to keep troops in the Middle East to fight terrorism, and that it’s likely that America’s bloated military budget will not only remain at its current size but may actually increase under his presidency due to the need to focus on “near peer” threats like China and Russia.
This is not a deviation in messaging from Biden and his crack team of beltway string-pullers, but a continuation of already established patterns. His campaign has been consistently out-hawking Trump on foreign policy by attacking him for insufficient aggression toward Venezuela, China, North Korea, Syria, Cuba, and of course Russia, as well as criticizing Trump for not acting like a “wartime president“.
By Ivan Eland
The American Conservative
n Bob Woodward’s book Rage, the author quotes President Trump as claiming that he “saved” de facto Saudi ruler Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) after the assassination and dismemberment of Washington Post writer Jamal Khashoggi. Trump reportedly said, “I was able to get Congress to leave him alone. I was able to get them to stop.” Not only was this shocking, but the general U.S. cultivation of despotic Saudi Arabia for the sake of oil purchases and weapons sales is unnecessary in today’s world.
This U.S.-Saudi bargain goes back to World War II, when President Franklin D. Roosevelt noticed that the trends were pointing toward the U.S. increasing its dependence on foreign petroleum, as its own world-leading oil production attenuated. Before the world oil price increases of the 1970s, the U.S. government believed in buying other nations’ oil and conserving its own supplies. (After the 1973 Arab oil embargo and price increases, the rage became “oil and energy independence”—in other words, lessening oil imports and using petroleum produced within U.S. borders.) The deal FDR reached with the Saudis was that they would sell the United States oil from their substantial reserves in exchange for American protection of their country and oil fields.
Imagine that. The Gulf States and Israel are merely state-guaranteed export markets for US arms manufacturers and economic colonies for US petroleum companies underwritten by the US taxpayers.
Executive VP at The Quincy Institute, Trita Parsi, breaks down the latest reports from the intelligence community concerning a potential attack on America orchestrated by Iran’s leadership. Some say these retaliation efforts are a direct result of the killing of terrorist leader Qassem Soleimani.
When the “War on Terrorism” started in 2001, I said at the time that the terror war was going to be a cover for a war of imperialist aggression against the rest of the world that rivaled the Third Reich’s. Of course, such views were met with much derision at the time. Sometimes it sucks to be right.
By Barbara Boland
The American Conservative
In the nineteen years since 9/11, the U.S. has waged ceaseless wars in dozens of countries around the world. A new study finds that those wars have exacted a heavy human toll on local populations—at least 37 million people in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, the Philippines, Libya and Syria have fled their homes due to wars the U.S. was involved in during the post-9/11 wars.
This exceeds the number of people displaced by every war since 1900, other than World War II. Thirty seven million is a conservative estimate—the number may actually be closer to 48-59 million. From 2010 to 2019, the total number of refugees and displaced persons globally nearly doubled from 41 million to a staggering 79.5 million, surpassing even post-World War II numbers.
The Mindcrime liberty show discusses whether megacorps would dominate the freed market/Rothbardistan/ancapistan/private law society (or whatever parlance one wants to use).
By Hans-Georg Maaßen and Johannes Eisleben
Over the last fifty years, the West has witnessed a continuous decline in the quality of the state and its activities, along with a cultural deterioration of the public sphere. All OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries have also undergone a massive dichotomization of private property ownership: An ever-smaller fraction of the population owns a growing share of all non-public assets. According to some estimates, the richest one percent holds 70 to 80 percent of all global private property, while an increasing number owns nothing and is excluded from decent incomes and the means to live a normal family life.
Trump has been more pro-Israel than any previous US president, and he is at least as pro-Saudi as the Bush family.
Gareth Porter discusses President Trump’s foreign policy as we near the end of his first term. The story of Trump’s time in office, as everyone knows, has been that despite his sense for the futility and unpopularity of America’s endless wars, he, like Obama before him, hasn’t been able to resist the pressures of the military-industrial complex and actually follow through with ending them. The news in Afghanistan is somewhat positive, where Trump has put Zalmay Khalilzad in charge of negotiating a U.S. withdrawal. But Porter is concerned that because there are no stipulations about peace between the Afghan government and the Taliban, any conflict between them could easily be used as an excuse for American troops to go back. In the opposite case, Trump has been absolutely horrible when it comes to Yemen, where he has helped Saudi Arabia wage a war of genocide, basically in exchange for weapons sales by American companies.
Discussed on the show:
Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist on the national security state. He is the author of Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare and, with John Kiriakou, The CIA Insider’s Guide to the Iran Crisis. Follow him on Twitter and listen to Gareth’s previous appearances on the Scott Horton Show.
This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: NoDev NoOps NoIT, by Hussein Badakhchani; The War State, by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.com; Tom Woods’ Liberty Classroom; ExpandDesigns.com/Scott; Listen and Think Audio; TheBumperSticker.com; and LibertyStickers.com.
They’ve also embedded themselves in the Trump administration with most “progressives” being co-opted stooges.
Scott interviews James Carden about his latest article, which explores the recent return of many prominent neocons to the Democratic Party in opposition to Trump. Carden reminds us that during the 1960s a group of hawkish Democrats moved over to side with the Republicans in response to some of the radical social movements in America at that time, thus founding the neoconservative movement. Now, as we near the end of Trump’s first term, many of them are supporting Biden—and it’s easy to see why, says Carden: Biden and Harris represent the exact same establishment foreign policy consensus shared by both Bushes, both Clintons, and Barack Obama. Sadly, even many progressives find themselves siding with the centrist establishment, since they will do anything to oppose Trump.
Discussed on the show:
James Carden is the executive editor for the American Committee for East-West Accord and former adviser on Russia policy at the US State Department. He is a contributing writer at The Nation.
The Zionist/Sunni alliance strengthens. It’s also interesting how the neoliberals, Never Trumper neocons, and Trumpists all hold to an “Israel First” foreign policy paradigm with the social democrats usually being a bit wishy-washy at best.
By Jason Ditz
A joint statement between Bahrain and the United States on Friday announced that Bahrain will be normalizing ties with Israel, entering “direct dialogue” and establishing full diplomatic relations.
President Trump made the announcement, and officials say a signing ceremony, involving Bahrain, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates, will be happening on Tuesday. Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu presented this as a “new era of peace.”
This started in August with the “Abraham Accord,” a peace deal between Israel and the UAE.
A couple years ago, I was interviewed by a supposed “post-left” podcast that ridiculed my suggestion that anti-imperialism should be the priority issue of North American anarchists on the grounds that the US empire is the world’s leading mass murderer. At the same time, the hosts of the program were practically hysterical about the alleged “racism” of the National-Anarchist Movement. But nobody ever said common sense is a mandatory characteristic for anarchists. “Anarchists Against Common Sense” can be a tendency as well.
“NEVER FORGET that the man who exposed US war crimes and the slaughter of innocent people has been rotting in prison, tortured, denied a fair trial, and treated as a top-tier criminal for exposing top-tier bipartisan tyrants while a war-mongering media apparatus that goes on and on about the importance of journalism in the age of Trump barely bats their eyes.” -Carey Wedler
Two of the world’s shittiest countries realize they can become even bigger dickheads by joining forces.
Middle East Monitor
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel are working on a plan to establish a spy base in the Yemeni Island of Socotra, according to JForum, the official sites of the Jewish and French-speaking community. The two countries, which normalised relations earlier this month, have already undertaken steps to install a spy base on the island strategically located in the Arabian Sea some 350 kilometres south of Yemen.
Israel and the Emirates are making all logistical preparations to set up intelligence bases to collect information throughout the Gulf of Eden Bay from Bab Al-Mandab on the island of Socotra, in southern Yemen, which is under the control of the Emirates, reported JForum citing Yemeni sources. It was suggested that the co-operation to build a spy base was down to the two country’s normalisation of ties.
The way this writer describes how each century seems to give rise to a major empire which then expires during the following century is interesting. Since the rise of Western hegemony, it was Portugal, followed by Spain, then Holland, France, England, and now America.
This book is a must-read for anyone who is interested in anti-globalization movements. The most important political question in the 21st century is how do we fight globalization without erecting repeats of 20th-century tyrannies like Communism, Nazism, and Islamism, or merely creating an endless series of chaostic failed states like Syria, Libya, or Mexico. Available here.
So FOX is posing as the antiwar channel now? Except for when the beneficiaries are Israel and Saudi Arabia, of course.
The neocons’ Iranian MEK allies, an Islamo-Marxist cult, create fake journalists who publish opinion pieces calling for war with Iran.
By Paul Brian and Arthur Bloom
The American Conservative
There is at least one more foreign policy opinion writer from the Mujahideen-eKhalq (MEK) whose existence is dubious, based on a study by a social media analyst and statements from a defector from the group. Amir Basiri, who contributed to Forbes 9 times, the Washington Examiner 52 times, OpenDemocracy, Algemeiner, and The Hill once also appears to be a fabrication.
The MEK is an Iranian exile group for which John Bolton, Rudy Giuliani, and other foreign policy luminaries have given paid speeches. Dems like Joe Lieberman and Howard Dean have also spoken on their behalf. But the group has American blood on its hands, has been accused of practicing forced sterilization, and their belief system has been described as a mixture of Marxism and Islamism. Its supporters claim they, and their front group the National Council of Resistance of Iran, are a sort of government-in-exile, despite nearly nonexistent support for the group within Iran. They also have waged a substantial disinformation campaign in the Western press, in particular targeting conservative media.
A three-way fight is brewing in the Middle East and Central Asia.
By Seth J. Frantzman
Following the historic agreement between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited the region to ensure the stability of U.S. interests. In addition to the UAE, he visited Israel, Sudan, Bahrain and Oman. During the trip, the U.S. also criticized Turkey for hosting Hamas leaders, whom the U.S. and Israel view as terrorists. The U.S. message appears to be that a new alliance system is forming in the region, with the UAE and Israel at its core and Washington’s backing.
This may be part of a wider U.S. strategy to shore up allies in the Middle East and confront China and Russia in the long term.
This is more or less the map of indigenous Europe before the Romanization period. A problem with much contemporary anti-imperialist or post-colonialist thought is that it tends to limit its analysis to the early modern period and beyond, i.e. the “age of exploration” through the postwar period. However, the history of Western colonialism really starts with the Romans and begins in Europe and the Mediterranean.