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The Grand Chessboard:
American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives

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Zbigniew Brzezinski. Harvard International Review Winter 1997/1998 'The Grand Chessboard - American Primacy and its Geostrategic Imperatives'

The sudden emergence of the first and only global power has created a situation in which an equally quick end to its supremacy-either because of America's withdrawal from the world or because of the sudden emergence of a successful rival- would produce massive international instability. In effect, it would prompt global anarchy.

The Harvard political scientist Samuel P. Huntington is right in boldly asserting that,

"a world without US primacy will be a world with more violence and disorder and less democracy and economic growth than a world where the United States continues to have more influence than any other country in shaping global affairs. The sustained international primacy of the United States is central to the welfare and security of Americans and to the future of freedom, democracy, open economies, and international order in the world."

In that context, how America "manages" Eurasia is critical. Eurasia is the globe's largest continent and is geopolitically axial. A power that dominates Eurasia would control two of the world's three most advanced and economically productive regions. A mere glance at the map also suggests that control over Eurasia would almost automatically entail Africa's subordination, rendering the Western Hemisphere and Oceania geopolitically peripheral to the world's central continent.

About 75 percent of the world's people live in Eurasia, and most of the world's physical wealth is there as well, both in its enterprises and underneath its soil. Eurasia accounts for about 60 percent of the world's GNP and about three-fourths of the world's known energy resources.

Eurasia is also the location of most of the world's politically assertive and dynamic states. After the United States, the next six largest economies and the next six biggest spenders on military weaponry are located in Eurasia. All but one of the world's overt nuclear powers and all but one of the covert ones are located in Eurasia. The world's two most populous aspirants to regional hegemony and global influence are Eurasian.

All of the potential political and/or economic challengers to American primacy are Eurasian. Cumulatively, Eurasia's power vastly overshadows America's. Fortunately for America, Eurasia is too big to be politically one.

The time has come for the United States to formulate and prosecute an integrated, comprehensive, and long-term geostrategy for all of Eurasia. This need arises out of the interaction between two fundamental realities:

  1. America is now the only global superpower

  2. Eurasia is the globe's central arena.

US Secretary of Defense William Cohen and Ukrainian Defense Minister Olexandr Kuzmuk

watch as NATO exercises promise a secure Europe.

Hence, what happens to the distribution of power on the Eurasian continent will be of decisive importance to America's global primacy and to America's historical legacy.

In that context, for some time to come-for more than a generation- America's status as the world's premier power is unlikely to be contested by any single challenger. No nation-state is likely to match America in the four key dimensions of power (military, economic, technological, and cultural) that cumulatively produce decisive global political clout. Short of a deliberate or unintentional American abdication, the only real alternative to American global leadership in the foreseeable future is international anarchy. In that respect, it is correct to assert that America has become, as President Clinton put it, the world's "indispensable nation."

It is important to stress here both the fact of that indispensability and the actuality of the potential for global anarchy. The disruptive consequences of population explosion, poverty-driven migration, radicalizing urbanization, ethnic and religious hostilities, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction would become unmanageable if the existing and underlying nation-state-based framework of even rudimentary geopolitical stability were itself to fragment.

Without sustained and directed American involvement, before long the forces of global disorder could come to dominate the world scene. And the possibility of such a fragmentation is inherent in the geopolitical tensions not only of today's Eurasia but of the world more generally.

Implications of European Unity

The United States has always professed its fidelity to the cause of a united Europe. Ever since the days of the Kennedy administration, the standard invocation has been that of "equal partnership." Official Washington has consistently proclaimed its desire to see Europe emerge as a single entity, powerful enough to share with America both the responsibilities and the burdens of global leadership.

That has been the established rhetoric of the subject. But in practice, the United States has been less clear and less consistent. Does Washington truly desire a Europe that is a genuinely equal partner in world affairs, or does it prefer an unequal alliance? For example, is the United States prepared to share leadership with Europe in the Middle East, a region not only much closer geographically to Europe than to America but also one in which several European states have long-standing interests? The issue of Israel instantly comes to mind. US-European differences over Iran and Iraq have also been treated by the United States not as an issue between equals but as a matter of insubordination.

The emergence of a truly united Europe-especially if that should occur with constructive American support-will require significant changes in the structure and processes of the NATO alliance, the principal link between America and Europe. NATO provides not only the main mechanism for the exercise of US influence regarding European matters but the basis for the politically critical American military presence in Western Europe.

However, European unity will require that structure to adjust to the new reality of an alliance based on two more or less equal partners, instead of an alliance that, to use traditional terminology, involves essentially a hegemony and its vassals. That issue has so far been largely skirted, despite the modest steps taken in 1996 to enhance within NATO the role of the Western European Union (WEU), the military coalition of the Western European states. A real choice in favor of a united Europe will thus compel a far-reaching reordering of NATO, inevitably reducing the American primacy within the alliance.

In brief, a long-range American geostrategy for Europe will have to address explicitly the issues of European unity and real partnership with Europe. An America that truly desires a united and hence also a more independent Europe will have to throw its weight behind those European forces that are genuinely committed to Europe's political and economic integration.

Such a strategy will also mean junking the last vestiges of the once-hallowed US-UK special relationship.

The NATO Imperative

A policy for a united Europe will also have to address-though jointly with the Europeans-the highly sensitive issue of Europe's geographic scope.

The former is more a matter for a European decision, but a European decision on that issue will have direct implications for a NATO decision. The latter, however, engages the United States, and the US voice in NATO is still decisive.

Given the growing consensus regarding the desirability of admitting the nations of Central Europe into both the EU and NATO, the practical meaning of this question focuses attention on the future status of the Baltic republics and perhaps also that of Ukraine. There is thus an important overlap between the European dilemma discussed above and the second one pertaining to Russia. It is easy to respond to the question regarding Russia's future by professing a preference for a democratic Russia, closely linked to Europe.

Presumably, a democratic Russia would be more sympathetic to the values shared by America and Europe and hence also more likely to become a junior partner in shaping a more stable and cooperative Eurasia. But Russia's ambitions may go beyond the attainment of recognition and respect as a democracy. Within the Russian foreign policy establishment (composed largely of former Soviet officials), there still thrives a deeply ingrained desire for a special Eurasian role, one that would consequently entail the subordination to Moscow of the newly independent post-Soviet states.

With regard to Russia, the United States faces a dilemma.

US policy toward the vital geopolitical pivots of Ukraine and Azerbaijan cannot skirt that issue, and America thus faces a difficult dilemma regarding tactical balance and strategic purpose. Internal Russian recovery is essential to Russia's democratization and eventual Europeanization. But any recovery of its imperial potential would be inimical to both of these objectives.

Moreover, it is over this issue that differences could develop between America and some European states, especially as the EU and NATO expand.

The costs of the exclusion of Russia could be high- creating a self-fulfilling prophecy in the Russian mindset-but the results of dilution of either the EU or NATO could also be quite destabilizing.

Problems at the Periphery

Another major uncertainty looms in the large and geopolitically fluid space of Central Eurasia, maximized by the potential vulnerability of the Turkish-Iranian pivots. In the area from Crimea in the Black Sea directly eastward along the new southern frontiers of Russia, all the way to the Chinese province of Xinjiang, then down to the Indian Ocean and then westward to the Red Sea, then northward to the eastern Mediterranean Sea and back to Crimea, live about 400 million people, located in some twenty-five states, almost all of them ethnically as well as religiously heterogeneous and practically none of them politically stable.

Some of these states may be in the process of acquiring nuclear weapons.

This huge region, torn by volatile hatreds and surrounded by competing powerful neighbors, is likely to be a major battlefield both for wars among nation-states and, more likely, for protracted ethnic and religious violence. Whether India acts as a restraint or whether it takes advantage of some opportunity to impose its will on Pakistan will greatly affect the regional scope of the likely conflicts. The internal strains within Turkey and Iran are likely not only to get worse but to greatly reduce the stabilizing role these states are capable of playing within this volcanic region.

Such developments will in turn make it more difficult to assimilate the new Central Asian states into the international community, while also adversely affecting the American-dominated security of the Persian Gulf region. In any case, both America and the international community may be faced here with a challenge that will dwarf the recent crisis in the former Yugoslavia.

A possible challenge to American primacy from Islamic fundamentalism could be part of the problem in this unstable region. By exploiting religious hostility to the American way of life and taking advantage of the Arab-Israeli conflict, Islamic fundamentalism could undermine several pro-Western Middle Eastern governments and eventually jeopardize American regional interests, especially in the Persian Gulf.

However, without political cohesion and in the absence of a single genuinely powerful Islamic state, a challenge from Islamic fundamentalism would lack a geopolitical core and would thus be more likely to express itself through diffuse violence.

A Pragmatic Approach to China

A geostrategic issue of crucial importance is posed by China's emergence as a major power. The most appealing outcome would be to co-opt a democratizing and free-marketing China into a larger Asian regional framework of cooperation. But suppose China does not democratize but continues to grow in economic and military power?

A "Greater China" may be emerging, whatever the desires and calculations of its neighbors, and any effort to prevent that from happening could entail an intensifying conflict with China. Such a conflict could strain American-Japanese relations-for it is far from certain that Japan would want to follow America's lead in containing China-and could therefore have potentially revolutionary consequences for Tokyo's definition of Japan's regional role, perhaps even resulting in the termination of the American presence in the Far East.

However, accommodation with China will also exact its own price. To accept China as a regional power is not a matter of simply endorsing a mere slogan. There will have to be substance to any such regional preeminence.

To put it very directly,

Although China is emerging as a regionally dominant power, it is not likely to become a global one for a long time to come-and paranoiac fears of China as a global power are breeding megalomania in China, while perhaps also becoming the source of a self-fulfilling prophesy of intensified American-Chinese hostility. Accordingly, China should be neither contained nor propitiated.

It should be treated with respect as the world's largest developing state, and- so far at least -a rather successful one. Its geopolitical role not only in the Far East but in Eurasia as a whole is likely to grow as well. Hence, it would make sense to co-opt China into the G-7 annual summit of the world's leading countries, especially since Russia's inclusion has widened the summit's focus from economics to politics.

For historic as well as geopolitical reasons, China should consider America its natural ally. Unlike Japan or Russia, America has never had any territorial designs on China; and, unlike Great Britain, it never humiliated China. Moreover, without a viable strategic consensus with America, China is not likely to be able to keep attracting the massive foreign investment so necessary to its economic growth and thus also to its attainment of regional preeminence. For the same reason, without an American-Chinese strategic accommodation as the eastern anchor of America's involvement in Eurasia, America will not have a geostrategy for mainland Asia; and without a geostrategy for mainland

Asia, America will not have a geostrategy for Eurasia. Thus for America, China's regional power, co-opted into a wider framework of international cooperation, can be a vitally important geostrategic asset- in that regard coequally important with Europe and more weighty than Japan in assuring Eurasia's stability.

Emerging Challenges

In the past, international affairs were largely dominated by contests among individual states for regional domination. Henceforth, the United States may have to determine how to cope with regional coalitions that seek to push America out of Eurasia, thereby threatening America's status as a global power. However, whether any such coalitions do or do not arise to challenge American primacy will in fact depend to a very large degree on how effectively the United States responds to the major dilemmas identified here.

Potentially, the most dangerous scenario would be a grand coalition of China, Russia, and perhaps Iran, an "antihegemonic" coalition united not by ideology but by complementary grievances. It would be reminiscent in scale and scope of the challenge once posed by the Sino-Soviet bloc, though this time China would likely be the leader and Russia the follower. Averting this contingency, however remote it may be, will require a display of US geostrategic skill on the western, eastern, and southern perimeters of Eurasia simultaneously.

A geographically more limited but potentially even more consequential challenge could involve a Sino-Japanese axis, in the wake of a collapse of the American position in the Far East and a revolutionary change in Japan's world outlook. It would combine the power of two extraordinarily productive peoples, and it could exploit some form of "Asianism" as a unifying anti-American doctrine. However, it does not appear likely that in the foreseeable future China and Japan will form an alliance, given their recent historical experience; and a farsighted American policy in the Far East should certainly be able to prevent this eventuality from occurring.

Also quite remote, but not to be entirely excluded, is the possibility of a grand European realignment, involving either a German-Russian collusion or a Franco-Russian entente. There are obvious historical precedents for both, and either could emerge if European unification were to grind to a halt and if relations between Europe and America were to deteriorate gravely. Indeed, in the latter eventuality, one could imagine a European-Russian accommodation to exclude America from the continent. At this stage, all of these variants seem improbable. They would require not only a massive mishandling by America of its European policy but also a dramatic reorientation on the part of the key European states.

Whatever the future, it is reasonable to conclude that American primacy on the Eurasian continent will be buffeted by turbulence and perhaps at least by sporadic violence. America's primacy is potentially vulnerable to new challenges, either from regional contenders or novel constellations.

The currently dominant American global system, within which "the threat of war is off the table," is likely to be stable only in those parts of the world in which American primacy, guided by a long-term geostrategy, rests on compatible and congenial sociopolitical systems, linked together by American-dominated multilateral frameworks.

A Geostrategy For Eurasia

The point of departure for the needed policy has to be hard-nosed recognition of the three unprecedented conditions that currently define the geopolitical state of world affairs: for the first time in history,

  1. a single state is a truly global power

  2. a non-Eurasian state is globally the preeminent state

  3. the globe's central arena, Eurasia, is dominated by a non-Eurasian power

However, a comprehensive and integrated geostrategy for Eurasia must also be based on recognition of the limits of America's effective power and the inevitable attrition over time of its scope. The very scale and diversity of Eurasia, as well as the potential power of some of its states, limit the depth of American influence and the degree of control over the course of events.

This condition places a premium on geostrategic insight and on the deliberately selective deployment of America's resources on the huge Eurasian chessboard. And since America's unprecedented power is bound to diminish over time, the priority must be to manage the rise of other regional powers in ways that do not threaten America's global primacy.

Eurasia

In the short run, it is in America's interest to consolidate and perpetuate the prevailing geopolitical pluralism on the map of Eurasia. That puts a premium on maneuver and manipulation in order to prevent the emergence of a hostile coalition that could eventually seek to challenge America's primacy, not to mention the remote possibility of any one particular state seeking to do so.

By the middle term, the foregoing should gradually yield to a greater emphasis on the emergence of increasingly important but strategically compatible partners who, prompted by American leadership, might help to shape a more cooperative trans-Eurasian security system. Eventually, in the much longer run still, the foregoing could phase into a global core of genuinely shared political responsibility.

The most immediate task is to make certain that no state or combination of states gains the capacity to expel the United States from Eurasia or even to diminish significantly its decisive arbitrating role. However, the consolidation of transcontinental geopolitical pluralism should not be viewed as an end in itself but only as a means to achieve the middle-term goal of shaping genuine strategic partnerships in the key regions of Eurasia.

It is unlikely that democratic America will wish to be permanently engaged in the difficult, absorbing, and costly task of managing Eurasia by constant manipulation and maneuver, backed by American military resources, in order to prevent regional domination by any one power. The first phase must, therefore, logically and deliberately lead into the second, one in which a benign American hegemony still discourages others from posing a challenge not only by making the costs of the challenge too high but also by not threatening the vital interests of Eurasia's potential regional aspirants.

What that requires specifically, as the middle-term goal, is the fostering of genuine partnerships, predominant among them those with a more united and politically defined Europe and with a regionally preeminent China, as well as with (one hopes) a post-imperial and Europe-oriented Russia and, on the southern fringe of Eurasia, with a regionally stabilizing and democratic India. But it will be the success or failure of the effort to forge broader strategic relationships with Europe and China, respectively, that will shape the defining context for Russia's role, either positive or negative.

It follows that a wider Europe and an enlarged NATO will serve well both the short-term and the longer-term goals of US policy. A larger Europe will expand the range of American influence-and, through the admission of new Central European members, also increase in the European councils the number of states with a pro-American proclivity-without simultaneously creating a Europe politically so integrated that it could soon challenge the United States on geopolitical matters of high importance to America elsewhere, particularly in the Middle East. A politically defined Europe is also essential to the progressive assimilation of Russia into a system of global cooperation.

Meeting these challenges is America's burden as well as its unique responsibility. Given the reality of American democracy, an effective response will require generating a public understanding of the continuing importance of American power in shaping a widening framework of stable geopolitical cooperation, one that simultaneously averts global anarchy and successfully defers the emergence of a new power challenge.

These two goals-averting global anarchy and impeding the emergence of a power rival-are inseparable from the longer-range definition of the purpose of America's global engagement, namely, that of forging an enduring framework of global geopolitical cooperation.

In brief, the US policy goal must be unapologetically twofold:

  1. to perpetuate America's own dominant position for at least a generation and preferably longer still

  2. to create a geopolitical framework that can absorb the inevitable shocks and strains of social-political change while evolving into the geopolitical core of shared responsibility for peaceful global management

A prolonged phase of gradually expanding cooperation with key Eurasian partners, both stimulated and arbitrated by America, can also help to foster the preconditions for an eventual upgrading of the existing and increasingly antiquated UN structures. A new distribution of responsibilities and privileges can then take into account the changed realities of global power, so drastically different from those of 1945.

These efforts will have the added historical advantage of benefiting from the new web of global linkages that is growing exponentially outside the more traditional nation-state system.

That web, woven by:

  1. multinational corporations

  2. NGOs (non-governmental organizations, with many of them transnational in character)

  3. scientific communities

  4. reinforced by the Internet

...already creates an informal global system that is inherently congenial to more institutionalized and inclusive global cooperation.

In the course of the next several decades, a functioning structure of global cooperation, based on geopolitical realities, could thus emerge and gradually assume the mantle of the world's current "regent," which has for the time being assumed the burden of responsibility for world stability and peace.

Geostrategic success in that cause would represent a fitting legacy of America's role as the first, only, and last truly global superpower.

The USA military forces are active over most of the globe: about 226 countries have US military troops, 63 of which host American bases, while only 46 countries in the world have no US military presence - a projection of military power that makes the Roman, British, and Soviet empires pale in comparison.

In his 1919 essay, "The Sociology of Imperialisms," Joseph Schumpeter wrote of Rome during its years of greatest expansion,

There was no corner of the known world where some interest was not alleged to be in danger or under actual attack. If the interests were not Roman, they were those of Rome's allies; and if Rome had no allies, then allies would be invented. When it was utterly impossible to contrive such an interest-why, then it was the national honor that had been insulted.

The fight was always invested with an aura of legality. Rome was always being attacked by evil-minded neighbors, always fighting for a breathing-space. The whole world was pervaded by a host of enemies, and it was manifestly Rome's duty to guard against their indubitably aggressive designs.*

As G. John Ikenberry, professor of geopolitics at Georgetown University noted in Foreign Affairs:

The new grand strategy [initiated by the Bush administration]…. begins with a fundamental commitment to maintaining a unipolar world in which the United States has no peer competitor. No coalition of great powers without the United States will be allowed to achieve hegemony. Bush made this point the centerpiece of American security policy in his West Point commencement address in June: "America has, and intends to keep, military strengths beyond challenges-thereby making the destabilizing arms races of other eras pointless, and limiting rivalries to trade and other pursuits of peace."…The United States grew faster than the other major states during the decade [of the 1990s], it reduced military spending more slowly, and it dominated investment in the technological advancement of its forces. Today, however, the new goal is to make these advantages permanent-a fait accompli that will prompt other states to not even try to catch up. Some thinkers have described the strategy as "breakout," in which the United States moves so quickly to develop technological advantages (in robotics, lasers, satellites, precision munitions, etc.) that no state or coalition could ever challenge it as global leader, protector and enforcer ("America's Imperial Ambition," Foreign Affairs, October 2002).

Selected Amazon Reviews

The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives

A Spine Chilling prediction of present circumstances. September 2, 2004

R. D. Smith

Format:Paperback

Like others offering their reviews, I rate this book very highly not because it is a real "page turner" or is particularly well written, but because of its cold Machiavellian analysis of the need to protect and expand the American Empire and what that means to the ordinary Joe and Jane Citizen.

Three things in this book made my blood run ice cold. The first is the complete absense of any sense of morality in the whole discussion. I do not mean that this is an *im*moral book, it is not a moral book, it is *a*moral in that there is literally no discussion whatsoever whether what is being proposed is RIGHT or should be done. That the recomendations to grow the American Empire are valid is simply assumed, not proven or even argued. The second thing was the whole discussion on how the political center of mass was Central Eurasia (i.e. the region between Turkey and Pakistan and between Iran and Turkmenistan) and how unlikely it was that we were going to be able to have a substantial presence in the region (in the near term) unless we have SOME PERL HARBOR CLASS EVENT to accelerate the populations willingness to accept the costs. Also, This Was Bad because it would delay our needed expansion. Then, just on cue, we have the 9/11 attacks, and dang if we don't end up with a Whole Bunch of military presence all throughout the heart of Eurasia... Coincidence? Makes one wonder. As if that is not enough, the book closes with a clear and unambiguous reference to the steps needed to get us to the One World Government of the New World Order.

Read it and weep because, as another reviewer stated, he is not predicting the future, he is *planning* the future. Coldly. Methodically.

4 Comments |

A chilling account of Roman-style imperialism January 3, 2002

By A Customer

Format:Paperback

This is how Brzezinski views the (supposedly sovereign) nations of Central Asia:

"The last decade of the twentieth century has witnessed a tectonic shift in world affairs. For the first time ever, a non-Eurasian power has emerged not only as a key arbiter of Eurasian power relations but also as the world's paramount power. The defeat and collapse of the Soviet Union was the final step in the rapid ascendance of a Western Hemisphere power, the United States, as the sole and, indeed, the first truly global power..."

"Two basic steps are thus required: first, to identify the geostrategically dynamic Eurasian states that have the power to cause a potentially important shift in the international distribution of power and to decipher the central external goals of their respective political elites and the likely consequences of their seeking to attain them;... second, to formulate specific U.S. policies to offset, co-opt, and/or control the above..." (p. 40)

- "...To put it in a terminology that harkens back to the more brutal age of ancient empires, the three grand imperatives of imperial geostrategy are to prevent collusion and maintain security dependence among the vassals, to keep tributaries pliant and protected, and to keep the barbarians from coming together." (p.40)

- "Henceforth, the United States may have to determine how to cope with regional coalitions that seek to push America out of Eurasia, thereby threatening America's status as a global power." (p.55)

- "America is now the only global superpower, and Eurasia is the globe's central arena. Hence, what happens to the distribution of power on the Eurasian continent will be of decisive importance to America's global primacy and to America's historical legacy." (p.194)

- "That puts a premium on maneuver and manipulation in order to prevent the emergence of a hostile coalition that could eventually seek to challenge America's primacy..." (p. 198)

- "The most immediate task is to make certain that no state or combination of states gains the capacity to expel the United States from Eurasia or even to diminish significantly its decisive arbitration role." (p. 198)

- "For Pakistan, the primary interest is to gain Geostrategic depth through political influence in Afghanistan - and to deny to Iran the exercise of such influence in Afghanistan and Tajikistan - and to benefit eventually from any pipeline construction linking Central Asia with the Arabian Sea." (p.139)

And ponder the meaning of these statements in a post-9-11 world:

- "Moreover, as America becomes an increasingly multi-cultural society, it may find it more difficult to fashion a consensus on foreign policy issues, except in the circumstance of a truly massive and widely perceived direct external threat." (p. 211)

- "The attitude of the American public toward the external projection of American power has been much more ambivalent. The public supported America's engagement in World War II largely because of the shock effect of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. (pp 24-5)

To most Americans the people of the world are just that- people, just like us, with a right to self-determination. To Brzezinski, they are merely pawns on a chessboard. Such an imperialist strategy does not make me feel any safer- how did Napoleon's strategy fare for the French in the long run? Or the Roman emperors for their citizens?

Rome fell, Hitler fell, all imperialist powers ultimately fail, because they follow the over-extended geopolitical strategy advocated by Brzezinski. While our military is busy fighting for oil interests all around the world, who's watching the front door?

7 Comments |

Do strategists love their children too? February 16, 2002

By D. Ghica

Format:Paperback

I read this book with disbelief. Brzezinski was for a long time a strategist, a political planner of the highest rank so I have to take him seriously. But I couldn't help but constantly wonder if the book is for real.

It displays an unabashed and unapologetic view of the U.S. as a world 'hegemon' (author's word) and divides the rest of the world in 'vassals' (author's word), rivals, 'pivots' and strategically irrelevant countries. Western Europe and Japan are the prominent members of the first category, Russia and China of the second. The pivots are the countries that have strategic choices important to the U.S., such as the Ukraine. United Kingdom is an (amusing) example of strategically irrelevance.

The book proceeds by systematically and often tediously analyzing case-by-case scenarios and what-ifs concerning the strategic impact of the policy decisions of the players (vassals, rivals and pivots) in four main theatres: Europe, Russia, Central Asia and the Far East. The analysis seemed rather un-principled to me but by the end I could discern some key points. The most important of them is that the U.S., despite is global hegemony cannot afford wars but it has to maintain its dominance by smartly playing the rivals against each other so that a major global rival does not emerge.

I think the book's shocking disregard of democracy and national self-determination is quite consistent with the way the American administration tends to act in international affairs. Unfortunately, the current administration does not seem to take the book's main advice regarding the need for America to avoid outright wars and to dominate through smart diplomacy.


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[Dec 03, 2017] Islamic Mindset Akin to Bolshevism by Srdja Trifkovic

Highly recommended!
Actually it was the West, especially the USA which created political Islam to fight Soviets. They essentially created Osama bin Laden as a political figure. The USA is also the main protector of Saudi Arabia were Wahhabism is the official religion. Then they tried to partition Russia by supporting Chechen islamists and financed the jihadist groups in Russia (especially in Dagestan).
Obama administration flirted with Muslim Brotherhood and unleashed the wars in Lybia and Siria were islamists were trying to take down the legitimate governments.
So Political Islam despite its anti-Western message used as a tool as a patsy for the destabilization of "unfriendly", the dogs that could be unleashed when weapons and money started to flow.
Now it looks like boomerang returns home.
Notable quotes:
"... I'd say that in modern times the main culprit was Zbigniew Brzezynski, who freely admitted in an interview with the French weekly magazine Le Nouvel Observateur in 1998 that he had this, as he called it, "brilliant idea" to let the Islamist genie out of the bottle to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan following the Soviet occupation in 1979. At that time he was President Carter's National Security Advisor. The transmission belt, from the CIA and various other U.S. agencies to the jihadists in Afghanistan, went via Pakistan. The ISI, the all-powerful military Inter-Service Intelligence-an institution which is pro-jihadist to boot-was used by the U.S. to arm elements which later morphed into al-Qaeda. The breeding ground for the modern, one might say postmodern form of jihadism, was Afghanistan-and it was made possible by U.S. policy inputs which helped its development. ..."
"... Instead of utter anarchy, I think we are more likely to see the ever more stringent control of the social media. The German government has already imposed on Google and Twitter which is based on the German draconian "hate speech" legislation, rather than on the universally accepted standards. On the whole we see everywhere in Europe that when you have a political party or a person trying to call a spade by its name, to call for a moratorium on immigration or for a fundamental change in the way of thinking, they will be demonized. ..."
"... The answer is fairly simple, but it would require a fundamental transformation of the mindset of the political decision-makers. It is to start treating Islamic activism not as "religious" but as an eminently political activity -- subversive political activity, in the same way as communist subversion was treated during the Cold War. ..."
"... To start with, every single potential U.S. citizen from the Islamic world needs to be interviewed in great detail about his or her beliefs and commitments. It is simply impossible for a believing Muslim to swear the oath of allegiance to the United States. None of them, if they are true believers, can regard the U.S. Constitution as superior to the Sharia-which is the law of God, while the U.S. Constitution is a man-made document. ..."
"... If there is to be a civil war in Europe, it would be pursued between the elite class which wants to continue pursuing multiculturalism and unlimited immigration --for example Germany, where over a million migrants from the Middle East, North Africa etc. were admitted in 2015 alone-and the majority of the population who have not been consulted, and who feel that their home country is being irretrievably lost. ..."
Feb 01, 2016 | chroniclesmagazine.org
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On January 23 Freedom and Prosperity Radio , Virginia's only syndicated political talk radio show, broadcast an interview with Srdja Trifkovic on the subject of Islam and the ongoing Muslim invasion of Europe. Here is the full transcript of the interview. ( Audio )

FPR: Your book The Sword of the Prophet was published back in 2002, yet here we are-15 years later-still scratching our heads over this problem. Defeating Jihad you wrote ten years ago, and yet we are still fumbling around in the dark. It seems like we don't have the ability to say what is right and what is wrong. We've lost the ability we had had during the Cold War to say out way is better than their way . . .

ST: I'm afraid the problem is deeper than that. It is in the unwillingness of the ruling elite in the Western world to come to grips with the nature of Islam-as-such. There is this constant tendency by the politicians, the media and the academia to treat jihadism as some sort of aberration which is alien to "true" Islam. We had an example of that in 2014, when President Obama went so far as to say that ISIS was "un-Islamic"! It is rather curious that the President of the United States assumes the authority of a theologian who can pass definite judgments on whether a certain phenomenon is "Islamic" or not. Likewise we have this constant repetition of the mantra of the "religion of peace and tolerance," which is simply not supported by 14 centuries of historical experience. What I've tried to emphasize in both those books you've mentioned, and in my various other writings and public appearances, is that the problem of Islam resides in the core texts, in the Kuran and the Hadith , the "Traditions" of the prophet of Islam, Muhammed. This is the source from which the historical practice has been derived ever since. The problem is not in the jihadists misinterpreting Islam, but rather in interpreting it all too well. This mythical "moderate Islam," for which everybody seems to be looking these days, is an exception and not the rule.

In answer to your question, I'd say that "scratching one's head" is-by now-only the phenomenon of those who refuse to face reality. Reasonable people who are capable of judging phenomena on their merits and on the basis of ample empirical evidence, are no longer in doubt. They see that the problem is not in the alleged misinterpretation of the Islamic teaching, but rather in its rigorous application and literal understanding. I'm afraid things will not get better, because with each and every new jihadist attack, such as the Charlie Hebdo slaughter in Paris a year ago, or again in Paris last November, or the New Year's Eve violence in Germany, we are witnessing-time and over again-the same problem. The Islamic mindset, the Islamic understanding of the world, the Muslim Weltanschauung , world outlook, is fundamentally incompatible with the Western value system and the Western way of life.

FPR: . . . It seems obvious, regarding Islam, that its "freedom of religion" is impacting other people, and it's dictated to do so-it must go out and fight the infidels. And that's where we have the disconnect. Maybe there is some traction to the statement, as you put it, that fundamentalism reflects a far more thorough following of Islam, and that it is simply incompatible with the Constitution?

ST: It is inevitable, because if you are an orthodox, practicing, mainstream Muslim, then you necessarily believe in the need to impose Sharia as the law of the land. Sharia is much more than a legal code. It is also a political program, it is a code of social behavior, it is the blueprint for the totality of human experience. That's why it is impossible to make Sharia compatible with the liberal principle of "live and let live": it is inherently aggressive to non-Islam. In the Islamic paradigm, the world is divided in the Manichean manner, black-and-white, into "the World of Faith," Dar al-Islam , literally "the world of submission," and "the World of War, Dar al-Harb .

It is the divine duty of each and every Muslim to seek the expansion of Dar al-Islam at the expense of Dar al-Harb until the one true faith is triumphant throughout the world. In this sense the Islamic mindset is very similar to Bolshevism. The Bolsheviks also believed that "the first country of Socialism" should expand its reach and control until the whole world has undergone the proletarian revolution and has become one in the march to the Utopia of communism. There is constant inner tension in the Islamic world, in the sense that for as long as non-Islam exists, it is inherently perceived as "the other," as an abomination. In that sense, Muslims perceive any concession made by the West-for instance in allowing mass immigration into Western Europe-not as a gesture of good will and multicultural tolerance, but as a sign of weakness that needs to be exploited and used as a means to an end.

FPR: The Roman Catholic Church has its Catechism which decides the issues of doctrine. Until there's an Islamic "catechism" which can say "no, this is no longer the right interpretation, this is not what it means any more"-and I don't think this would be a short-term thing, because you'd still have the splinter groups dissenting against the "traitors"-but is this the only way to go to the center of theological jurisprudence in the Islamic world?

ST: The problem is twofold. First of all, there is no "interpretation" of the Kuran . Classical Islamic sources are adamant that the Kuran needs to be taken at face value, literally. If it says in Sura 9, verse 5, "fight the infidels wherever you find them, and let them go if they convert," or if it says time and over again that the choice for a non-Muslim is to accept Islam, or to live as a second-class citizen-the dhimmi -under Islamic supremacy, or else to be killed it is very hard to imagine what sort of authority in the Islamic world would be capable of saying "now we are going to relativize and soften the message."

The second part of the problem is that there is no single authority in Islam. It is not organized in a hierarchical way like the Roman Catholic Church, where if the Pope speaks ex cathedra his pronouncements are obligatory for all Catholics everywhere. Islam is a diffused religion, with various centers of learning and various ullema who may or may not agree on certain peripheral details. Yet any any one of them who'd dare say "look, now we rally need to reinterpret the fundamental sources, the Kuran and the Hadith, so as to make it compatible with the pluralist society"-they'd immediately be condemned as heretics. We've seen attempts at reform in the past. In the end the orthodox interpretation always prevails, because it is-sadly-the right interpretation of the core texts. With neither the hierarchy capable of imposing a new form of teaching on the faithful, nor the existence of alternative core texts which would provide grounds for such reinterpretation, it is very hard to see how it could be done.

FPR: How do we go forward? . . . How does the end-game play out?

ST: I'd say that in modern times the main culprit was Zbigniew Brzezynski, who freely admitted in an interview with the French weekly magazine Le Nouvel Observateur in 1998 that he had this, as he called it, "brilliant idea" to let the Islamist genie out of the bottle to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan following the Soviet occupation in 1979. At that time he was President Carter's National Security Advisor. The transmission belt, from the CIA and various other U.S. agencies to the jihadists in Afghanistan, went via Pakistan. The ISI, the all-powerful military Inter-Service Intelligence-an institution which is pro-jihadist to boot-was used by the U.S. to arm elements which later morphed into al-Qaeda. The breeding ground for the modern, one might say postmodern form of jihadism, was Afghanistan-and it was made possible by U.S. policy inputs which helped its development.

But if we look at the past 14 centuries, time and over again we see the same phenomenon. The first time they tried to conquer Europe was across the Straits of Gibraltar and across the Iberian Peninsula, today's Spain. Then they crossed the Pyrinees and were only stopped at Poitiers by Charles Martel in 732AD. Then they were gradually being pushed back, and the Reconquista -- the reconquest of Spain-lasted 800 years, until 1492, when Cordoba finally fell to the Christian forces. Then came the second, Ottoman onslaught, in the XIVth century, which went across the Dardanelles into the Balkan Peninsula. The Turks were only finally stopped at the gates of Vienna in 1683. Pushing Turkey out of Europe went all the way to 1912, to the First Balkan War.

So we may say that we are now witnessing the third Islamic conquest of Europe. This time it is not using armed janissaries, it is using so-called refugees. In fact most of them are healthy young men, and the whole process is obviously a strategic exercise -- a joint venture between Ankara and Riyadh, who are logistically and financially helping this mass transfer of people from the Turkish and Middle Eastern refugee camps to the heart of Europe. The effect may be the same, but this time it is far more dangerous because, on the European side-unlike in 732, or 1683-there is no political will and there is no moral strength to resist. This is happening because the migrants, the invaders, see Europe as the candy store with a busted lock and they are taking advantage of that fact.

FPR: When you see the horrors of rapes and sexual assaults that took place across Germany, and now we see the Germans' response . . . vigilantes on their streets . . . this is something that we either control politically and with leadership, or else it falls apart into anarchy, Prof. Trifkovic?

ST: Instead of anarchy I think we will have a form of postmodern totalitarianism. The elite class, the government of Germany etc, and the media, will demonize those who try to resist. In fact we already have the spectacle of the minister of the interior of one of the German states saying that "hate speech" on the social networks and websites was far worse than the "incidents" in Cologne. And the Mayor of Cologne-an ultra-feminist who is also a pro-immigration enthusiast-said that in order to prevent such events in the future women should observe a "code of conduct" and keep distance "at an arm's length" from men. It's a classic example of blaming the victim. The victims of Islamic violence should change their behavior in order to adapt themselves to the code of conduct and values of the invaders. This is truly unprecedented.

Instead of utter anarchy, I think we are more likely to see the ever more stringent control of the social media. The German government has already imposed on Google and Twitter which is based on the German draconian "hate speech" legislation, rather than on the universally accepted standards. On the whole we see everywhere in Europe that when you have a political party or a person trying to call a spade by its name, to call for a moratorium on immigration or for a fundamental change in the way of thinking, they will be demonized. The same applies to Marine Le Pen in France and to her party, the Front National , or to Geert Wilders in Holland, or to Strache in Austria. Whoever tries to articulate a coherent plan of action that includes a ban or limits on Islamic immigration is immediately demonized as a right-wing fanatic or a fascist. Instead of facing the reality of the situation, that you have a multi-million Islamic diaspora in Europe which is not assimilating, which refuses even to accept a code of conduct of the host population, the reaction is always the same: blame the victim, and demonize those who try to articulate some form of resistance.

FPR: Dr. Trifkovic, how does a country such as ours, the United States, fix this problem . . .

ST: The answer is fairly simple, but it would require a fundamental transformation of the mindset of the political decision-makers. It is to start treating Islamic activism not as "religious" but as an eminently political activity -- subversive political activity, in the same way as communist subversion was treated during the Cold War. In both cases we have a committed, highly motivated group of people who want to effect a fundamental transformation of the United States in a way that is contrary to the U.S. Constitution, to the American way of life, and to the American values. It is time to stop the Islamists from hiding behind the "freedom of religion" mantra. What they are seeking is not some "freedom of religion" but the freedom to organize in order to pursue political subversion. They do not accept the U.S. Constitution.

To start with, every single potential U.S. citizen from the Islamic world needs to be interviewed in great detail about his or her beliefs and commitments. It is simply impossible for a believing Muslim to swear the oath of allegiance to the United States. None of them, if they are true believers, can regard the U.S. Constitution as superior to the Sharia-which is the law of God, while the U.S. Constitution is a man-made document. I happen to know the oath because I am myself a naturalized U.S. citizen. They can do it "in good faith" from their point of view by practicing taqqiya . This is the Arab word for the art of dissimulation, when the Muslim lies to the infidel in order to protect the faith. For them to lie to investigators or to immigration officials about their beliefs and their objectives does not create any conflict of conscience. The prophet of Islam himself has mandated the use of taqqiya if it serves the objective of spreading the faith.

FPR: Can a civil war come out of this? Is it conceivable?

ST: If there is to be a civil war in Europe, it would be pursued between the elite class which wants to continue pursuing multiculturalism and unlimited immigration --for example Germany, where over a million migrants from the Middle East, North Africa etc. were admitted in 2015 alone-and the majority of the population who have not been consulted, and who feel that their home country is being irretrievably lost. I do not believe that there will be many people fighting on the side of the multiculturalists' suicide, but nevertheless we still have very effective forces of coercion and control on the government side which can be deployed to prevent the articulation of any long-term, coherent plan of resistance.

FPR: Where can people continue to read you writings, Dr. Trifkovic?

ST: On Chroniclesmagazine.org where I publish weekly online commentaries, and also in the print edition of Chronicles where I have my regular column.

[Aug 11, 2017] Zbigniew Brzezinski died in May, as late as April this year he was calling for closer relations between Russian and the US

Old bitter enemy of Russia probably became afraid of growing China and decided that splitting Russia and China is essential for the USA hegemony survival. Other thatn that it is way too big change in anti-soviet dinosaur Zbig thinking -- leopard can't change his spots.
Notable quotes:
"... Everything continues as 'normal' with Trump as Prez, except, he's a bit of a loose canon, not one of the 'boys'. Worse still, he actually believes that the prez runs the show! I don't know prezs actually last ran the show, maybe Kennedy, maybe never. Big capital runs the show and uses structures like the CFR, Bilderberg, Chatham House, plus of course, the universities and 'think tanks'. ..."
"... They're not united however, as Trump so forcefully reveals. So how to deal with him without giving the game away? Pre-election, they tried ridicule. Post, they're trying to incriminate him and it shouldn't be difficult to do, without Russia. ..."
"... In a strange way, Trump is actually helping them by being such a big doofus. I think the lights are on but nobody's home. If only he'd behave the way Obummer did, and do as he's told! ..."
Aug 11, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

nurse.comic | Aug 7, 2017 1:02:13 PM | 96

I was happily surprised to just read the BRZEZINSKI article which wasn't ruthless chessboard as portrayed here. The quote doesn't give a good idea of what the article says about the US working constructively

>> with both Russia and China not for domination but less conflict.

As he says, "The alternative to a constructive vision, and especially the quest for a one-sided militarily and ideologically imposed outcome, can only result in prolonged and self-destructive futility".

Zbigniew Brzezinski died in May, as late as April this year he was calling for closer relations between Russian and the US.

I am sad to see this site misuse him in this article. Or rather I am glad because now I hold ZB a bit higher and will be even more cautious here.

William Bowles | Aug 7, 2017 3:12:30 PM | 100

At #96:

or the opposite. If Trump really is isolationists and if he wants USA isolate itself on the two Americas, then he has two options: make America turn its back on the world, or make the world turn its back on America. The first option he failed, DC regime is stronger than POUTS. Then - the second option.

Everything continues as 'normal' with Trump as Prez, except, he's a bit of a loose canon, not one of the 'boys'. Worse still, he actually believes that the prez runs the show! I don't know prezs actually last ran the show, maybe Kennedy, maybe never. Big capital runs the show and uses structures like the CFR, Bilderberg, Chatham House, plus of course, the universities and 'think tanks'.

They're not united however, as Trump so forcefully reveals. So how to deal with him without giving the game away? Pre-election, they tried ridicule. Post, they're trying to incriminate him and it shouldn't be difficult to do, without Russia.

He is after all, a billionaire capitalist, who must have done all kinds shady, nee illegal deals and probably some in Russia as well. Show me a big capitalist who hasn't?

In a strange way, Trump is actually helping them by being such a big doofus. I think the lights are on but nobody's home. If only he'd behave the way Obummer did, and do as he's told!

[May 31, 2017] THE PRESIDENTS INFERIORITY COMPLEX , HIS ADVISORS RUSSIA-HATING OBSESSION, AND THE PUTSCH PLOTTER WITH THE ITCHY TRIGGER FING by John Helmer,

Notable quotes:
"... Brzezinski flattered and fawned over Carter; relentlessly conspired to undermine Vance and other rivals for Carter's attention; postured, manipulated, lied to the press, and faked to the president. ..."
"... "it is important to recognize that Jimmy Carter was ultimately responsible for the nature of his policymaking system and for the decisions made about who would frame and articulate U.S. foreign policies." ..."
"... "Sure, Brzezinski was a strategic thinker," one of Sexton's sources told her. "But he was frequently wrong! Vance's strategies have withstood the test of time." According to Sexton, her source was a "public official [with] in-depth familiarity with Vance's and Brzezinski's work. He agreed to be interviewed on the condition he would not be quoted on this subject." ..."
"... Paul Henze came to Brzezinski's staff after serving as the CIA's station chief in Ethiopia in 1969 to 1972, and then in Turkey between 1974 and 1977. Henze had been one of the plotters of the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in July 1974, which continues to this day. ..."
"... The Somali invasion of Ethiopia which began in July 1977, and was known as the Ogaden war until the Somalis were defeated by the Russian and Cuban-backed Ethiopian military in March 1978, was one of the schemes Henze managed, and Brzezinski persuaded Carter to approve. By the time Henze's war was defeated, he rationalized the war-fighting strategy's continuing purpose in a memorandum since declassified and quoted by Sexton ..."
"... Another of the Henze plots – the military putsch in Turkey in September 1980 – was Carter's and Brzezinski's scheme too. ..."
"... Henze had started in the CIA as a specialist managing assassination gangs with pretensions to anti-communist ideology. He began with the Iron Guard of Romania, and was still running the Grey Wolves of Turkey when he moved on to the Brzezinski staff. ..."
"... The KGB assessment was that Henze, Brzezinski and Carter had all been in on the plot, just as they had been in on the scheme to elect Cardinal Karol Wojtyła, Archbishop of Cracow, as the Pope in October 1978. ..."
"... Henze was joined by other CIA men on Brzezinski's staff including Donald Gregg, Fritz Ermarth, Robert Gates and Samuel Hoskinson. They were all plotters of the putsch which overthrew the President of Pakistan, Zulfiqar ali Bhutto, in July 1977. Bhutto was replaced by Army General Zia ul-Haq, and subsequently hanged. Zia was killed in August 1988, along with the US Ambassador to Pakistan, Arnold Raphel, and General Herbert Wassom, the head of US military aid mission to Pakistan. ..."
"... How many of the putsches which CIA operation histories log in as successful, and how many of the unsuccessful attempts – Ghana and El Salvador (1979), Bolivia, Liberia, Guinea-Bissau, Suriname, Upper Volta (Burkina Faso), Iran (1980) – were engagements in acting tough and doing new big things which Brzezinski got the president to approve are questions Carter is shy to answer. ..."
May 31, 2017 | johnhelmer.net

The widow of Cyrus Vance, the only US Secretary of State to resign in protest against his president's actions in a hundred years, called Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Jimmy Carter's National Security Advisor and Vance's rival, "that awful man". Not a single official of the State Department under Vance during the Carter Administration of 1977 to 1981, thought differently. Most of them had monosyllabic terms for Brzezinski. Since Brzezinski died last Friday, not a single member of his own White House staff has made a public statement in his honour, memory or defence. The mute ones include Madeleine Albright, who owed to Brzezinski her career promotion as an academic, then White House staffer, then Secretary of State herself.

Despite the disloyalty of those closest to him, and the detestation for Bzezinski of those further away, he was, and remained, Carter's favourite. Between 1977 and 1981, Brzezinski's time with Carter, according to the White House logs, amounted to more than 20% of the president's working time. That's 12 minutes of every hour - no other official came close. On Friday, shortly after Brzezinski's death was announced by his family, Carter issued a statement extolling him as "a superb public servant inquisitive, innovative, and a natural choice as my national security advisor brilliant, dedicated, and loyal. I will miss him."

What was this bond between them, and why does it matter now? One reason is that what they did together were the freshest American operations studied at KGB schools in Moscow by a recruit in training at the time named Vladimir Putin.

This was the National Security Advisor's staff during the four years of Carter's term, 1977-1981.

PRESIDENT CARTER'S RUSSIA-HATING TEAM

A 451-page doctoral dissertation by Mary Sexton examining the relationship between Carter and Brzezinski identifies the evidence, including documents, witnesses, and independent reports which should have driven them apart. She fails to answer why that didn't happen. She concludes Brzezinski flattered and fawned over Carter; relentlessly conspired to undermine Vance and other rivals for Carter's attention; postured, manipulated, lied to the press, and faked to the president. Sexton concluded in 2009: "it is important to recognize that Jimmy Carter was ultimately responsible for the nature of his policymaking system and for the decisions made about who would frame and articulate U.S. foreign policies."

She quoted Lloyd Butler, Carter's appointee as the White House lawyer so no Brzezinski underling, as saying he was baffled by Carter's refusal to address the troubles Brzezinski caused. "I will never understand it", Butler said in 2002. He died in 2005.

Neither Vance in his memoirs (he died in 2002), nor his wife Grace, nor any of Vance's deputies at State, nor Carter's staff at the White House, provide an answer. In research by Betty Glad, published in November 2009, she reported "a few close aides met the emotional needs of the president", but the aides didn't tell Glad what they thought Carter's emotional needs were. Glad acknowledged that in preparing her book she was "above all indebted to Zbigniew Brzezinski who expeditiously answered my emails and was very open about his interactions with Carter."

Glad concluded that Carter gave Brzezinski "his complete and absolute support Brzezinski was one of the few people Carter never reprimanded And Carter dismissed all criticisms of Brzezinski that might come his way." Why?

"Carter needed and admired the strategic skills and the toughness in dealing with others that Brzezinski offered," Glad summed up, with the latter's help. The need to be tough was a recurrent theme in Brzezinski's briefings and memoranda to Carter, she added. Brzezinski made Carter feel he was "doing big things." Fighting the Russians (Soviets then) was, in the advice Brzezinski presented to Carter and repeated to Glad, was the biggest of the big things. "Brzezinski", concluded Glad, "appealed to Carter's desire to do new big things and act quickly".

The bafflement reported by Carter subordinates and State Department officials under Vance is part truth; part cover-up by the officials; part deceit by Carter. For the answer of what bound Carter and Brzezinski together Glad doesn't uncover, nor even hint at. This is because it was a conspiracy of proxy wars, terrorism, assassinations, coups d'etat, and other black operations, still classified top secret, rationalized by Brzezinski to Carter and approved by the president, as part of a grand strategy to defeat the Kremlin. These were the acting-tough tactics which convinced Carter in secret, but which the president never admitted to in public. Not then, because the actions made Carter feel he was doing "new big things". Not since, because all of them have failed, with bloodshed and monumental losses for those whom the president and his strategist targeted, and collateral damage for the rest of the world, not least the US.

"Sure, Brzezinski was a strategic thinker," one of Sexton's sources told her. "But he was frequently wrong! Vance's strategies have withstood the test of time." According to Sexton, her source was a "public official [with] in-depth familiarity with Vance's and Brzezinski's work. He agreed to be interviewed on the condition he would not be quoted on this subject."

Paul Henze came to Brzezinski's staff after serving as the CIA's station chief in Ethiopia in 1969 to 1972, and then in Turkey between 1974 and 1977. Henze had been one of the plotters of the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in July 1974, which continues to this day.

The Somali invasion of Ethiopia which began in July 1977, and was known as the Ogaden war until the Somalis were defeated by the Russian and Cuban-backed Ethiopian military in March 1978, was one of the schemes Henze managed, and Brzezinski persuaded Carter to approve. By the time Henze's war was defeated, he rationalized the war-fighting strategy's continuing purpose in a memorandum since declassified and quoted by Sexton. "Much as we want the Soviets out", Henze briefed Brzezinski and Carter, "we are not going to get them out soon We should make their stay as costly as possible and the source of fundamental strain for them. We can do this in many ways, both overtly [and] covertly The Soviets are the culprits in the Horn and we should never let them or the world forget it."

Another of the Henze plots – the military putsch in Turkey in September 1980 – was Carter's and Brzezinski's scheme too.

Henze had started in the CIA as a specialist managing assassination gangs with pretensions to anti-communist ideology. He began with the Iron Guard of Romania, and was still running the Grey Wolves of Turkey when he moved on to the Brzezinski staff. After Carter's downfall, Henze spent years trying to cover up the role the Grey Wolves had played in the attempted assassination of Pope John-Paul II in May 1981. Henze's version of the plot was that the Kremlin and KGB had masterminded the scheme through the Bulgarian secret service. The KGB assessment was that Henze, Brzezinski and Carter had all been in on the plot, just as they had been in on the scheme to elect Cardinal Karol Wojtyła, Archbishop of Cracow, as the Pope in October 1978.

Brzezsinski's euology at Henze's funeral in Virginia in 2011 provided the cover story that he had engaged Henze in 1977 "to assume responsibility for oversight of the radios and to coordinate more generally our efforts to prevail in the Cold War without an actual war. Paul was in his element. He mobilized his enthusiasm, his commitment, and his boundless energy not only to protect RFE [Radio Free Europe], but to develop also a broader effort to nourish the hopes of those living in the Soviet bloc, including even the Soviet Union itself, that someday they, too, would be free."

For their combined record of violent failure, Brzezinski had this to say: "Paul proved himself to be a ferocious bureaucratic infighter and eventually the winner – though at times he was even impatient with my efforts to pursue – on the President's behalf - also some accommodation with the Soviet Union in the area of mutual arms control. But that was Paul, my fellow Cold warrior: enthusiastic, fearless, committed, principled, and relentless. A great American, an Eastern European by association, and one of the anonymous architects of the peaceful and victorious end to the Cold War."

Henze was joined by other CIA men on Brzezinski's staff including Donald Gregg, Fritz Ermarth, Robert Gates and Samuel Hoskinson. They were all plotters of the putsch which overthrew the President of Pakistan, Zulfiqar ali Bhutto, in July 1977. Bhutto was replaced by Army General Zia ul-Haq, and subsequently hanged. Zia was killed in August 1988, along with the US Ambassador to Pakistan, Arnold Raphel, and General Herbert Wassom, the head of US military aid mission to Pakistan.

Gregg was one of the plotters of the December 12, 1979, military putsch in South Korea.

Hoskinson was engaged in Middle Eastern attack and overthrow plots, some he endorsed and assisted, and some he would have done if he judged they had a chance of success.

How many of the putsches which CIA operation histories log in as successful, and how many of the unsuccessful attempts – Ghana and El Salvador (1979), Bolivia, Liberia, Guinea-Bissau, Suriname, Upper Volta (Burkina Faso), Iran (1980) – were engagements in acting tough and doing new big things which Brzezinski got the president to approve are questions Carter is shy to answer.

For them, the war in Afghanistan, which they plotted with alacrity from the start of the Carter Administration, was the culminating case of what Brzezinski described in his address over Henze's corpse as the "peaceful and victorious end to the Cold War."

These games of liquidating others in the cause of defeating the Kremlin has invigorated Carter, even today when Carter himself is on his last legs. Drawing the Russians on to the field of battle was his and Brzezinski's aim; Afghanistan, after the Soviet military intervention began in December 1979, was their main chance. Their successors in the White House have the same chance against Russian forces on the battlefields of Syria and Ukraine. Though he has tried, Brzezinski is no longer in a position to advise them that if they don't dare, they can't win. Carter is still alive to demonstrate that if they dare, they are likely to lose.

It isn't sure that's what KGB trainee Putin scribbled down during his lectures at the Andropov Red Banner Institute in 1984. It's certain he has noted it down now.

[May 30, 2017] John Helmer Zbigniew Brzezinski, the Svengali of Jimmy Carters Presidency, Is Dead, But the Evil Lives On naked capitalism

Notable quotes:
"... Brzezinski was an obsessive Russia-hater from the beginning to the end. That led to the monumental failures of Carter's term in office; the hatreds Brzezinski released had an impact which continues to be catastrophic for the rest of the world. ..."
"... Carter and Brzezinski in Carter's study, six weeks into the presidential term - April 19, 1977. ..."
"... To Brzezinski also goes the credit for projecting Iran on to its nuclear-armed path against the Great Satan and US allies in the Middle East, making the sunni-shia sectarian division into a cause of international war which it was not, before Brzezinski began ..."
"... Left: Sadat standing up, with Begin and Carter at the signing of the Camp David accords, September 17, 1978. Right, Sadat's downfall in Cairo at the Egyptian Army's annual victory parade, October 6, 1981. ..."
"... Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter, February 1979. ..."
"... If not for Carter, Brzezinski would have remained the marginal voice he was before and after the four-year Carter term. From the start of that term, in the first six months of 1977, Carter was also warned explicitly by his own staff, inside the White House and working on his confidential instruction, not to allow Brzezinski to dominate his policy-making to the exclusion of all other advice, and the erasure of the evidence on which the advice was based. ..."
"... When Vernamonti and I had written up our two reports, we concluded that Brzezinski had been deliberately and systematically misinforming and misleading Carter in his policy memoranda. He withheld evidence; mistook or misrepresented what other officials and their agencies were saying; and manipulated the decision and action tails of his memoranda, so that Carter would think he had little option but to do what Brzezinski told him to choose. Our job, Carter had told us when we commenced work, was to spot the fox in the hen house, and warn him before there were fatal consequences. ..."
"... But dedicated and loyal Brzezinski was solely to himself – not to Carter nor the presidency he had been elected to run. Brzezinski's choices were among the reasons Carter was defeated in the landslide election of November 1980. ..."
"... Brzezinski is not the only Russia-hater of extraction from the minor Polish nobility to make a career of his monomania. For more of what he and Carter failed to achieve in Syria, read this ; and in Ukraine, this . For the other Polish monomaniac of recent times, Radoslaw Sikorski, read more . ..."
"... Brzezinski is the only national security advisor in American history to succeed at mesmerizing his president into singing his songs, as the character of Svengali did to Trilby O'Ferrall, an Irish working girl, in the best-selling novel of 1894 by George du Maurier. ..."
"... Carter gave the power of the White House stage to Brzezinski's voice. The ruin which has followed is Brzezinski's evil, but the evil-doing, that's Carter's fault. ..."
"... Remember, please, the Blackstone Group was founded by Rockefeller protιgι, Peter G. Peterson, with Rockefeller seed money. ..."
"... The Carlyle Group was started by David Rubenstein (nephew of a dude named Jacob Rubenstein, before he changed his name to Jack Ruby) and Frank Carlucci, former CIA dude, with seed money from the Mellon family. ..."
"... The Deep State is that part of the organized crime syndicate, that is not only beyond morality, but beyond its own faux law (that it enforces against the uppity ones). ..."
"... Nowhere does Kennan encourage serious consideration of the possibility that the Soviets might have reason to feel threatened, "existentially," when they looked to the west .. ..."
"... The blaming of colonial powers is true in Africa where ocean going vessels altered what the colonial powers could achieve versus local powers, ..."
"... Again, most of this is increasingly well-known, but conventional wisdom seems to think that Saudi extremism and terror ties are contradictory to the United States' interests in supporting the regime. But it's contradictory only if terrorism poses a strategic threat to the West-it does not. ..."
"... Quite simply, terrorism in Europe or the US simply doesn't bother the Blob – its not a strategic issue, and they love to think of themselves as big strategic thinkers, too important to worry about mundane issues like civilian deaths. Terrorism works well for them – its not a real threat and every bomb blowing up tweens going to a concert just results in more money going to the securicracy. ..."
"... "The Simpsons" famously called Carter "History's greatest monster. " The two guys who crafted that scene and joke knew what a crummy President he was. I doubt it's been lost on Carter. ..."
"... That's a tall order for Brzezinski which I'm sure he played a significant role. Stephen Gowans has an interesting new book out 'Washington's Long War on Syria' which is recommended by Eva Bartlett. ..."
"... ""The thesis of this book is that Wall Street's war on Syria was motivated by the same aim: the de-Ba'athification of Syria and the elimination of secular Arab nationalist influence from the Syrian state, as a means of expunging the Arab nationalist threat to U.S. hegemony."" ..."
"... The blackest of humour contest to find Harvard's most evil. (Long intro about Hitler etc, skip to 18:30.) "Brzezinski is the Hydrox to Kissinger's Oreo" https://thetrap.fm/show/episode-100-chapo-goes-to-college-41717/ ..."
"... In Carter's defense, he has gone on the record and stated that the US today is now an oligarchy. Not exactly a "pass the buck" statement by a former president ..."
May 30, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

If ever there was a man who displayed on his face the evil on his mind, it was Zbigniew Brzezinski, (lead image, right) who died last week at a hospital near Washington.

Former President Jimmy Carter, who employed Brzezinski as his National Security Advisor between 1977 and 1981, the only high official post Brzezinski reached, said he "helped me set vital foreign policy goals, was a source of stimulation for the departments of defense and state, and everyone valued his opinion." Of Carter's three claims, only the first is true; the second is ironic hyperbole; the third is completely false. If Carter cannot tell the truth now about Brzezinski, after having 36 years to reflect on it, Carter reveals the principal source of Brzezisnki's power, when he exercised it. For Carter was no innocent ventriloquized by the evil Svengali (lead image, left), as in the original Svengali tale. Carter was simply more mendacious than Brzezinski, and is entirely to blame for doing what Brzezinski told him to do.

Brzezinski was an obsessive Russia-hater from the beginning to the end. That led to the monumental failures of Carter's term in office; the hatreds Brzezinski released had an impact which continues to be catastrophic for the rest of the world.

Carter and Brzezinski in Carter's study, six weeks into the presidential term - April 19, 1977.

To Brzezinski goes the credit for starting the organization, financing and armament of the mujahideen, the Islamic fundamentalists who have metastasized - with US money and arms still - into Islamic terrorist armies operating far from Afghanistan and Pakistan, where Brzezinski started them off. Only today, Russia – the target of Brzezinski's scheming - is relatively better prepared and safer from the terrorists than the countries of western Europe and the US itself.

To Brzezinski also goes the credit for projecting Iran on to its nuclear-armed path against the Great Satan and US allies in the Middle East, making the sunni-shia sectarian division into a cause of international war which it was not, before Brzezinski began. That it was not is due to the power of the secular Arab leaders to sustain an alternative to religion for governance. Brzezinski's idea was to target them as Kremlin stooges and overthrow them. To Brzezinski also goes the credit for releasing Israeli ambition under Menachem Begin and his successors on the Israeli right; the promotion of Egyptian corruption and weakness under Anwar Sadat and his successors; and the destruction of the Palestinians.

Left: Sadat standing up, with Begin and Carter at the signing of the Camp David accords, September 17, 1978. Right, Sadat's downfall in Cairo at the Egyptian Army's annual victory parade, October 6, 1981.

In Carter's obituary, he also gives Brzezinski the credit for "an essential role" in two other achievements Carter still claims for himself: "normalization of relations with China [and the] signing of the SALT II treaty." Carter is exaggerating the little he did, after his predecessors Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford had initiated and negotiated the terms for both. Carter says nothing about his failure to influence the course of US nuclear weapon designs that continue to evolve unhindered, and the schemes of first-strike war-fighting against both Russia and China which are virtual, if not quite stated US policy today.

Apart from the reference Carter makes first to his wife Rosalynn's views, there is no illumination. In 1977 Rosalynn Carter had different views from her husband's, but regarding Brzezinski and others in the Carter White House, she never dared to express them in public. On pain of instant dismissal nor did anyone else in the White House then. And there were no leaks.

Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter, February 1979.

If not for Carter, Brzezinski would have remained the marginal voice he was before and after the four-year Carter term. From the start of that term, in the first six months of 1977, Carter was also warned explicitly by his own staff, inside the White House and working on his confidential instruction, not to allow Brzezinski to dominate his policy-making to the exclusion of all other advice, and the erasure of the evidence on which the advice was based.

I know this because I was a member of the staff in those days. I know because I drafted the terms of a series of staff investigations which Carter requested and then authorized of how the advice he was receiving at his desk was influencing the choices and policy options he had to decide – memoranda from the cabinet departments, briefs from the intelligence agencies, and commentaries from different elements of the White House organization itself.

The investigation of two of Brzezinski's policy recommendations to Carter was assigned to a US Airforce officer on secondment to the White House staff at the time, Len Vernamonti ;and to me. We were part of a group of 25 titled the President's Reorganization Project (PRP). Our offices were in the New Executive Office Building, the red-brick structure across the street from the State, War and Navy Building, aka the Old Executive Office Building (OEOB); in Mark Twain's epithet, the ugliest building in America. Twain was referring to what the inhabitants of the building did, not to the exterior or interior decoration, which was grand. Brzezinski's staff operated in the OEOB. He himself, like his predecessors, kept his own office in the West Wing of the White House, diagonally across the lobby from the Oval Office and Carter's personal study.

The PRP, a Carter election campaign invention unprecedented in White House history, had the job of preparing a study for the president on how his White House operations might be organized to expand his policy choices, enlarge the evidence available for him to read – Carter was very keen on reading - anticipate consequences, and curb bureaucratic empire building outside the Oval Office. The staff had mostly come, as had I, from Carter's campaign advisors. Major Vernamonti, as he was then, had come to the PRP by secondment and by chance.

The idea of reorganization at the top of the US government bureaucracy wasn't novel; it most often accompanied incoming presidents whose party had been out of office for a long time and who wanted to purge non-loyalists and find jobs for their own people. But the idea of opening up the president's files and reassessing the decisions he had made in his first six months had never been attempted before.

Military, intelligence and foreign policy topics were off-limits because of the classification and security clearances required, so the PRP focused on domestic policymaking. In organizational management terms, they amounted to the same thing. We compiled a list of topics for investigation from among the public and private priorities of the new administration; Carter was asked to select which he wanted us to study. About 30 topics were selected; two were assigned to each of a dozen two-man teams. By Carter's order, we had authority to open all files, including those of the National Security Council (NSC). Bzezinski didn't like that; he resisted; he lost the first round

The subjects of the Brzezinski investigation remain classified. It's exactly 40 years since I last saw the papers. They were secret at the time, but there was a deeper, darker secret.

When Vernamonti and I had written up our two reports, we concluded that Brzezinski had been deliberately and systematically misinforming and misleading Carter in his policy memoranda. He withheld evidence; mistook or misrepresented what other officials and their agencies were saying; and manipulated the decision and action tails of his memoranda, so that Carter would think he had little option but to do what Brzezinski told him to choose. Our job, Carter had told us when we commenced work, was to spot the fox in the hen house, and warn him before there were fatal consequences. He had been a Navy officer and a submariner; also the Georgia State governor. So he knew about the pathologies of command and control; he also knew about fatal consequences. But neither he nor we anticipated that the fox would turn out to be Brzezinski, nor the chicken turn out to be Carter himself.

No president had ever been presented with such a stark analysis of his own reading of papers and his own decision-making. I knew that because I had consulted with senior White House staff directors going back to Franklin Roosevelt's time.

The recommendations Vernamonti and I drew from the decision-making research were revolutionary. We proposed that Carter retain a personal national security advisor with a staff restricted to sub-advisors amounting to less than a score. The large NSC bureaucracy, growing across the driveway in the OEOB, was to be broken up and returned to the mainline departments. Our idea was that the National Security Advisor would be restricted to being just that – an advisor in a staff function. Line command and control, which McGeorge Bundy started with President John Kennedy in 1961, and Henry Kissinger perfected under Richard Nixon between 1969 and 1975, was to be halted because it encouraged a government-wide war for the president's mind, which usually ended badly – not for the advisor but for the president.

There were more than 300 pages in the final PRP report, including the executive summary and the recommendations, plus the case studies. Brzezinski got early warning of the studies, and then received the drafts, plus a copy of the cover memorandum with recommendations. He saw at once the danger, and went to work on our superiors. The upshot was that on the weekend before our staff was due to present the report to Carter at a White House meeting, and answer his questions, Vernamonti and I were called in to an urgent meeting with the PRP leader, and his superior, Harrison Wellford.

Like several of us on the staff, Wellford was a Harvard graduate, with an equable, jocular Massachusetts manner of dealing in tight spots. He describes his background on the Carter campaign and then on the presidential transition team of 1976 here . But on the day Wellford called Vernamonti and me into his office, Wellford was not his usual self. He made clear that Brzezinski was furious, and would not allow our conclusions to go to Carter. Wellford himself didn't disagree with the evidence or the findings. He didn't disagree with the recommendations either, he said. But he lacked the power to fight Brzezinski with Carter, he conceded.

In his encomium on Brzezinski's death, Carter said last Friday: "Having studied Zbig's impressive background and his scholarly and political writings, I called on him to advise me on foreign policy issues during my first presidential campaign. I liked him immediately, and we developed an excellent personal relationship." That much is true. Carter also remembers: "He was brilliant, dedicated, and loyal." From the Harvard point of view, the first adjective was unexceptional – there are hundreds and thousands of "brilliant" Harvard graduates; about a dozen of them in the Carter White House. But dedicated and loyal Brzezinski was solely to himself – not to Carter nor the presidency he had been elected to run. Brzezinski's choices were among the reasons Carter was defeated in the landslide election of November 1980.

But that's getting ahead of our little tale. Wellford told Vernamonti and me he had no choice but to give us strict orders for the meeting scheduled the following week with Carter. Our case studies might, he said, be included in the tabs to the PRP briefing book we would present to the president. But the conclusions, and the recommendations for reform of the National Security Council, would be eliminated. Then Wellford added an ultimatum: Vernamonti and I would be allowed to sit at the meeting with Carter. But we were to say nothing unless Carter spoke to us. If that happened, we were not to mention our recommendations on Brzezinski. If we did that, we would both be fired instantly. That would have meant the end of Vernamonti's airforce career.

Wellford added this was a secret we were not to tell to anyone.

The upshot was this. Wellford, plus the PRP team leader (a Georgian like Carter whose name I've forgotten), the others on our staff; Vernamonti and I met with Carter to present our report. The meeting took place in the Cabinet Room. Vernamonti and I sat to the right of our superiors; Carter was across the table, his back to the windows. Brzezinski was present, along with other senior White House staff advisors of the day. The big briefing book lay in front of the president. He spoke of congratulations for the originality and painstaking work we had done, and promised to read every word. He asked questions, but not of Vernamonti or me. We stayed shtum. We walked out keeping our jobs, as did everyone else, especially Brzezinski.

Our defeat stayed secret for years. Ours was not the nail for want of which the shoe was lost, the horse, the knight, the battle, etc. There were many other nails, shoes, horses and knights lost, starting with Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, but he died in 2002 without telling as much as he could and should have done. Carter, however, did lose his kingdom, ignominiously. That still stings with him. Vernamonti (pictured recently, below left) went on to a brilliant USAF career, managing the purse which paid for US ballistic missile programs. Wellford (right) has managed the legal side of some of the largest energy businesses in the US.

Many years later, after the New York Times reported how thorough and effective Carter's reorganization of the White House had been, I responded with a letter detailing part of the Brzezinski record of 1977. I omitted Vernamonti's name, in case he was still in the Air Force; I included Wellford's. The letter was cued to be published, according to a Times editor who telephoned to check a couple of name-spellings and dates. But the letter never appeared. I was told by the Times that in advance of publication, Brzezinski was shown the text, and he commanded that it not appear. The newspaper did what it was told.

Brzezinski is not the only Russia-hater of extraction from the minor Polish nobility to make a career of his monomania. For more of what he and Carter failed to achieve in Syria, read this ; and in Ukraine, this . For the other Polish monomaniac of recent times, Radoslaw Sikorski, read more .

Brzezinski is the only national security advisor in American history to succeed at mesmerizing his president into singing his songs, as the character of Svengali did to Trilby O'Ferrall, an Irish working girl, in the best-selling novel of 1894 by George du Maurier.

Carter is mesmerized still. Without Carter, Brzezinski would have remained an inconsequential academic among many contending to be heard. Carter gave the power of the White House stage to Brzezinski's voice. The ruin which has followed is Brzezinski's evil, but the evil-doing, that's Carter's fault.

Disturbed Voter , May 30, 2017 at 5:32 am

Mika, his daughter, continues the Deep State work, in the MSM. And advisor Brzezinski wasn't the only cold warrior around in those days. Senator McCain carries that torch still, from the Hanoi Hilton.

esb , May 30, 2017 at 11:23 am

Right you are. This woman is truly dangerous, sporting her famous name and spewing her hateful, disruptive prattle, esp. due to her pairing with the faux-Republican Scarborough, who himself is a bizarre combination of neocon and progressive.

optimader , May 30, 2017 at 11:34 am

Who is the Deep State? Does it/they file Income tax?

sgt_doom , May 30, 2017 at 7:01 pm

Well, around 1963, the Deep State would be the super-rich families who called the shots, notably through such minions as Allen Dulles, (his cousin) Tracy Barnes, McGeorge Bundy, and a slew of others. Those richest families at that time were the Rockefeller, DuPont, Morgan, Harriman (Poindexter), Cabot (and Lodge), Forbes, Mellon and a few others.

Remember, please, the Blackstone Group was founded by Rockefeller protιgι, Peter G. Peterson, with Rockefeller seed money.

The Carlyle Group was started by David Rubenstein (nephew of a dude named Jacob Rubenstein, before he changed his name to Jack Ruby) and Frank Carlucci, former CIA dude, with seed money from the Mellon family.

Presently, one of the largest or more powerful of the private intel contractors, Booz Allen Hamilton is owned by the Carlyle Group, last time I checked. Carlyle also owned ARINC for quite a few years, yielding incredible corporate intel from such as they!

So Robert Scheer, who wrote this book ("They Know Everything About You") where he remarked a bit on Palantir (started by Peter Thiel, primarily with CIA contracts, now a private intel company), and pondered in his book how Thiel came to know Richard Perle, who steered Thiel into Adm. Poindexter for those CIA (Total Infomration Awareness-like) CIA contracts?

Of course, Scheer is used to robotically repeating CIA disinformation stuff so is unable to pursue simple investigative reporting techniques which would have yielded that Peter Thiel sat on the board of "American Friends of Bilderberg, Inc." (according to their 990 tax forms) along with Richard Perle (from whence he knew him, 'natch!) and David Rockefeller and Henry Kissinger, etc.

I trust I have added to your worldly sophistication?

Disturbed Voter , May 30, 2017 at 7:04 pm

You know you are in, when you are in the Carlyle Group. Not just the founders like the Bush family, but neo-libs like the Clintons. I am sure the Obama crime family will be invited into that exclusive private country club, if they continue to play ball the CIA way.

financial matters , May 30, 2017 at 10:55 pm

JFK and RFK took on US Steel as well as wanting to not escalate in Vietnam. This essentially probably got both of them killed.

Trump seems to be more circumspect in taking on the deep state.

Disturbed Voter , May 30, 2017 at 7:02 pm

When you are the law, like the Nixon presidency, there is no need to file, your taxable income is whatever you say it is. The Deep State is that part of the organized crime syndicate, that is not only beyond morality, but beyond its own faux law (that it enforces against the uppity ones).

Ignacio , May 30, 2017 at 6:30 am

I woludn't blame Brzezinski for the sunni-shia divide in countries like Irak. For this I would blame the british.

PlutoniumKun , May 30, 2017 at 7:00 am

Yes, I think thats overstating it. But it was certainly during the Carter era that the notion of setting the secular (Iraq) and Sunni States against Iran became policy – albeit after the Iranian Revolution. And of course it was during this period that it became someones bright idea that providing arms to extreme islamacists was a good strategy. I doubt they consciously decided to set sunni against shia, but that was one result.

But ultimately of course much of the problems in the middle east can be traced to the failure of the West to support secular States for Cold War reasons. Brutal and all as Assad (Sr) and Hussein were, they kept the lid on religious tension and were a vital counterbalance to the Gulf theocracies. And of course the CIA removed a genuinely popular reformist President in Iran in favour of a dictator. Helmer is right that the monomaniacal obsession with blocking the USSR caused all sorts of unnecessary bloodshed and chaos in the Middle East and Asia, although its overstretching it I think to blame so much on Brzezinski.

And its not all hindsight. I keep going back to Graham Greene's novel 'The Quiet American' from 1955 as an explanation for why so many supposedly smart foreign policy wonks could cause such havoc. Read that one book and so much becomes clear.

Ignacio , May 30, 2017 at 7:28 am

Totally agreed

johnnygl , May 30, 2017 at 10:47 am

Yes, ideological hatred of the soviets was clearly present at least as far back as the truman admin when nsc-68 was published. That was a break from the original, limited idea of george kennan's' containment' policy.

hemeantwell , May 30, 2017 at 12:53 pm

Surprising stuff from Helmer .

A 1976 Slavic Review article by Wright, "Mr. X and containment" is useful for pointing out that Kennan's recommendations were contradictory. While he was nominally arguing for a less alarmed (aka victimized anticommunist) position, the strategy of containment was still pitched at confrontation, and was very cut off from the possibilities of cooperation that were in the Yalta air. Kennan's idea that Russia would, like a wind-up toy, pursue an expansionist policy based on "military industrialization" was, in my view, an ideological spew by someone already submerged in it. Nowhere does Kennan encourage serious consideration of the possibility that the Soviets might have reason to feel threatened, "existentially," when they looked to the west, and for reasons having nothing to do with their by then desiccated Bolshevism.

Mark P. , May 30, 2017 at 2:21 pm

Nowhere does Kennan encourage serious consideration of the possibility that the Soviets might have reason to feel threatened, "existentially," when they looked to the west ..

Everybody has reasons.

Given Allied intervention in Russia during and immediately after WWI against the Soviets, the Soviets absolutely had reason to feel threatened existentially.

But also given the many millions of deaths under Stalin's regime, the West had reason to feel threatened existentially after WWII.

And also given the centuries-long histories of Polish-Russian wars, with Poland once occupying Moscow and later Russia controlling much of Poland in the 19th as well as in the 20th century - and factoring in Lenin's plan to expand the Soviet regime westwards by occupying Poland which led to the Polish-Soviet War of 1918-19 and the agreement between Stalin and Hitler that let the USSR occupy Poland in 1939 (which included the Katyn massacre) - the Poles have reasons to feel threatened by the Russians.

Brzezinski's strange, maniacal hatred of Russians isn't strange and maniacal given that history. For that matter, given the Soviet occupation of Hungary, during the Cold War Hungarians like John von Neumann and Edward Teller had reason for their strange, maniacal hatred of the Russians.

So while it's tiresome for the rest of us to deal with the attitudes of the Poles - including Brzezinski - and the other peoples who live in the territories adjoining Russia, the historical truth is that Russia - whether as Muscovy, the Russian empire, or the Soviet Union - has a many centuries-long history of being heavy-handed with its neighbors.

The hideousness of U.S. behavior in Latin America - and we can all agree it is hideous - is comparable, but arguably not even in the same league as the way the Russians have historically - and in the memory of some still living - treated their neighbors.

So everybody has reasons. Everybody has reasons.

Plenue , May 30, 2017 at 5:22 pm

But did Brzezinski hate Russia because of the history of what it's done to Poland, or because the Soviets deprived his family of their cushy aristocratic existence? At this point I'm not particularly inclined to think that toffs as a general rule view their lower-class countrymen as anything other than tools to serve and enrich themselves.

sgt_doom , May 30, 2017 at 7:04 pm

Excellent points, reminded me of a blog posting I'd read years ago at Economic Populist (not recommended, but occasionally one or two things would pop through):

http://www.economicpopulist.org/content/exploitation-inc-david-rockefeller-and-adventures-global-finance

NotTimothyGeithner , May 30, 2017 at 9:16 am

Except for Israel (that area was always weird due to distance from major powers*), the maps of the modern Middle East are strangely reminiscent of the old Ottoman provinces. The blaming of colonial powers is true in Africa where ocean going vessels altered what the colonial powers could achieve versus local powers, but the problem in the Middle East is the ability of foreign powers to influence and prop up poor governments who wouldn't otherwise be able to survive and weaken more stable governments. The Saudis and Israelis act boorish because they can go hide behind the U.S. whenever things get too hot.

*Jerusalem is the last place a major player could fortify before being forced to invade another major player in pre-modern days due to water concerns. This is why Jews exist. Jerusalem is too important to not fortify but is too distant and rural to bother with too, giving the locals a culture that appropriated everything but could never truly be overwhelmed. A Jerusalem sized city closer to the Nile would become Egyptian, and a city closer to Persepolis would become Persian through natural trade and extension of power. If Jerusalem wasn't a dependable city, no one would care.

Mark P. , May 30, 2017 at 2:32 pm

The blaming of colonial powers is true in Africa where ocean going vessels altered what the colonial powers could achieve versus local powers,

Ocean-going vessels but also the machine gun. As Hilaire Belloc wrote: Whatever happens, we have got. The Maxim gun, and they have not

When the first machine guns appeared circa 1860 much of Africa's interior remained unmapped and terra incognito to the Europeans. By 1915, conversely, every territory in Africa - except for Ethiopia - was not only mapped but a colonial possession of one or another of the European powers.

olga , May 30, 2017 at 9:20 am

Yes, and if one thinks long enough – it seems that many problems we are dealing with today can be traced directly to the so called British empire (including the divide and conquer strategy the Brits so skillfully employed). The empire only lasted 200+ yrs, but we'll be cleaning up its messes for the next 500.
And a bit of mittel Europa humour on ZB's escapades: when you let a goat go free, she'll go ice skating

PlutoniumKun , May 30, 2017 at 10:15 am

Incidentally, this article by Andrew Hobbs in Warisboring gives on explanation for why the blob doesn't actually care if its cultivation of Sunni extremists causes terrorism blowback:

Again, most of this is increasingly well-known, but conventional wisdom seems to think that Saudi extremism and terror ties are contradictory to the United States' interests in supporting the regime. But it's contradictory only if terrorism poses a strategic threat to the West-it does not.

Quite simply, terrorism in Europe or the US simply doesn't bother the Blob – its not a strategic issue, and they love to think of themselves as big strategic thinkers, too important to worry about mundane issues like civilian deaths. Terrorism works well for them – its not a real threat and every bomb blowing up tweens going to a concert just results in more money going to the securicracy.

River , May 30, 2017 at 1:41 pm

Sunni-Shia divide happened when Mohammed died. As for countries like Iraq, that would be the Ottomans who exacerbated that particular rift, themselves being Sunni.

TheCatSaid , May 30, 2017 at 6:59 am

What an important piece of history this is. Thank you John Helmer and NC for the post. It's of critical importance for understanding why the geopolitical chessboard looks the way it does today, including US-created "Islamic extremism" tool that has since grown and morphed and escaped into the "wild".

I wonder if Carter will ever learn how the crucial report contents were hijacked by Zbig at the last moment.

Interesting to learn of Rosalyn Carter's concerns. Is more info available about this?

Colonel Smithers , May 30, 2017 at 6:59 am

Thank you to JH for this fascinating insight.

With regard to Radek Sikorski, there is some dispute as to whether he really is (minor) nobility. At Oxford, where he became friends with Alex (aka Boris) Johnson and David Cameron, including being initiated into the Bullingdon Club (or the Buller as members call it), one British journalist, author (of How To Lose Friends And Alienate People) and free / charter school "entrepreneur" said there was something improbable and even impostor-ish about Sikorski, including claims of nobility and being related to the Polish WW2 general of the same name. The hack said that Sikorski would probably be unmasked as an encyclopaedia salesman from a hick town in the US.

A few years ago, at a City reception, I met a UBS banker who is in the well known picture of the Bullingdon Club with Johnson and Cameron. Sikorski and his wife, the so-called journalist Anne Applebaum, were riding high in the UK media /establishment at the time, and still do to a lesser extent, and have made enough money bashing Russia to be able to send their two sons to Eton. The banker expressed unease then about Sikorski and his Russia bashing, as if Sikorski and Applebaum were not quite kosher and trying to ingratiate themselves with the rich and powerful.

Apparently, General Wojciech Jaruzelski was also minor nobility. There's a lot of this pretence about, including the pair in London and NYC who milk having the same surname as the Rothschilds. The UK's current Home Secretary (minister for law and order) once ran a firm that supplied upper class extras to film productions (e.g. Four Weddings And A Funeral) and anyone who wanted to pretend having upper class connections.

PlutoniumKun , May 30, 2017 at 10:17 am

Thanks for that insight, Col. You mention Anne Applebaum – I used to marvel a few years ago at her writings in Slate magazine and wonder how someone who knew so little about the topics she wrote about could get such good writing gigs.

Indrid Cold , May 30, 2017 at 11:53 am

Yeah. That's the Deep State in action there. The one that guy was asking snarkily if it paid taxes. Its members do. But not like me or you.

witters , May 30, 2017 at 6:24 pm

She singlehandedly turned me off the NYRB, which has since continued its slide, culminating in the hysterics of Snyder.

Roger Smith , May 30, 2017 at 7:43 am

I want Carter to read this and issue a response.

oho , May 30, 2017 at 8:09 am

Jimmy Carter's mainstream hagiography has been pretty much set in positive stone -- the 'aw shucks' president who meant well and did what he could, not the naive outsider who let other forces co-opt his foreign policy.

Indrid Cold , May 30, 2017 at 11:55 am

Carter is a personification of America. "He meant well but made some errors along the way and regrettably, civilians were injured."

sgt_doom , May 30, 2017 at 7:11 pm

Like that presidential directive utilizing Saudi "help" in shipping Wahabist Islamic extremists to the northern border of Afghanistan and the old Soviet Union to raise hell and incite rebellion? Eventual outcome: 9/11/01!

Or Carter's abolishing federal anti-usury regulations?

Or his deregulation of the natural gas industry (involving firing the head of the National Geological Survey, if I recall the proper career scientist he fired, because the fellow admitted to the press when asked that there wasn't any natural gas shortage), airlines industry and trucking?

Or . . .

(In all honesty, though, I did respect his daughter Amy Carter - I thought she was the Real Deal!)

ger , May 30, 2017 at 12:21 pm

Alas, we have seen other hen house foxes besides Bzig . Kissinger, Albright, even the adorable HRC, in administrations wherein the Rooster turned out to be the Hen.

Darn , May 30, 2017 at 8:21 am

+100

nycTerrierist , May 30, 2017 at 8:43 am

Ditto.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 30, 2017 at 8:50 am

I believe Carter knows. It's part of his post-Presidency motivation. "The Simpsons" famously called Carter "History's greatest monster. " The two guys who crafted that scene and joke knew what a crummy President he was. I doubt it's been lost on Carter.

financial matters , May 30, 2017 at 7:45 am

That's a tall order for Brzezinski which I'm sure he played a significant role. Stephen Gowans has an interesting new book out 'Washington's Long War on Syria' which is recommended by Eva Bartlett.

""If there were any references in Western media to the Assad government's commitment to the Ba'ath Arab Socialist Party's values of freedom from foreign domination, state direction, planning and control of the economy, and working toward the unity of the Arab nation, I'm not aware of them.""

""The thesis of this book is that Wall Street's war on Syria was motivated by the same aim: the de-Ba'athification of Syria and the elimination of secular Arab nationalist influence from the Syrian state, as a means of expunging the Arab nationalist threat to U.S. hegemony.""

---–

We support corrupt states like Saudi Arabia that buy our arms and let us exploit their natural resources and are favorable to our banks and oil companies but don't tolerate states that are more interested in being free of American imperialism such as Libya, Iran, Iraq and Syria.

This could be said to have been set in motion after World War I when the Arab nation was carved up into individual countries separated by borders drawn in imperial map rooms.

LT , May 30, 2017 at 9:06 am

Military strategy (no matter what country): divide and conquer. Intelligence agencies help to pave that way.

They Sykes-Picot Treaty was the source of the "creative" map drawing post-WWI. A couple of the highlights being the creation of "Syria" (resources for France) and "Iraq" (resources for Britain). After WWI, it's been written that the "Arabs" really felt the USA would help them get the fairest deal. They should have taken a real hard look at the Philipines and Cuba, countries the USA helped against Spain.

Colonel Smithers , May 30, 2017 at 10:03 am

Thank you, LT.

France's former president Valery Giscard d'Estaing is related to Picot. One of his grandmothers, Genevieve, was Picot's sister.

The Giscard family, who adopted the aristocratic d'Estaing name to the disgust of the descendants of the d'Estaing family, had business interests in Syria. The family had interests in former colonies by way of their (former) ownership of Club Med. Some of them came to Mauritius when Club Med opened in Albion, near where I spend the festive season.

Another family that had colonial business interests are the Levy, including Bernard-Henri and Justine. BHL cashed out to Vincent Bollore before he destroyed the company and used the EUR 200m pay off to fund his political playboy lifestyle that included, briefly, plans for a philosophy magazine in Afghanistan.

Chauncey Gardiner , May 30, 2017 at 2:21 pm

Re: "a philosophy magazine in Afghanistan"? Seriously? How quintessentially French, and absolutely the best idea evah. Thanks so much for making my day!

witters , May 30, 2017 at 6:28 pm

What is perhaps even more French is the fact that BHL claims to BE a philosopher.

Darn , May 30, 2017 at 8:23 am

Posted this on another thread but I'll do it again.

The blackest of humour contest to find Harvard's most evil. (Long intro about Hitler etc, skip to 18:30.) "Brzezinski is the Hydrox to Kissinger's Oreo" https://thetrap.fm/show/episode-100-chapo-goes-to-college-41717/

Damson , May 30, 2017 at 10:08 am

An excellent precis from Helmer as always.

He is one of the very few writing today that can be trusted to give a truthful and thorough analysis of geopolitical events, and to stick to the known facts.

TheCatSaid

For those not yet following George Webb's YouTube, he's unraveling and exposing a number of interwoven illegal enterprises ("rat lines"). He's today revealed he's had assistance from insiders in French, Dutch and Serbian intelligence among others, and insiders in US agencies as well. Names have been named, lots of specifics coming out each day. What's the connection to Helmer's post here? Webb today described the foulness of the intelligence agency activities in recent years as having originated with Brzezinsky, with things becoming steadily more foul since then, but in a direction, mindset and way of operating that Brzezinsky had created.

Webb also makes a side comment about Brzezinsky's cause of death not being disclosed. He mentions it was a murder, and wonders aloud if it was because he'd had a recent change of heart and was about to tell prior secrets.

wellstone's ghost , May 30, 2017 at 11:40 am

I've never read the book The Grand Chessboard by Brzezinski, but my understanding is that it outlines the policy of containment of the Eurasian landmass which seems to be the US position at this time. Quite foolhardy in my opinion.

In Carter's defense, he has gone on the record and stated that the US today is now an oligarchy. Not exactly a "pass the buck" statement by a former president. He knows he got played by the Iranian hostage crisis and the dirty tricks of the Reagan campaign/CIA head William Casey. I think he believes he took one for the team(America), hence his dedication to charitable causes all these years as atonement for his mistakes.

StephenVerchinski , May 30, 2017 at 1:00 pm

Political Ponerology by Lobachewski. Zbig did stymie its publication according to the author. Zbig, was like many of our powerful, also a war criminal.

footnote4 , May 30, 2017 at 1:15 pm

Great to have Helmer's insight into the history. Carter needs to address it, and Brzezinski's recent change of heart as well:

The main architect of Washington's plan to rule the world has abandoned the scheme and called for the forging of ties with Russia and China. While Zbigniew Brzezinski's article in The American Interest titled "Towards a Global Realignment" has largely been ignored by the media, it shows that powerful members of the policymaking establishment no longer believe that Washington will prevail in its quest to extent US hegemony across the Middle East and Asia.

footnote4 , May 30, 2017 at 1:22 pm

Link for the above Broken Chessboard article

footnote4 , May 30, 2017 at 2:36 pm

Ok, that wasn't right either.

Here's the Counterpunch Broken Chessboard article on Brzezinski's recent change of heart re the strategy he pushed in the 1970s.

ChrisAtRU , May 30, 2017 at 2:37 pm

Thanks for this. Love the personal anecdotes.

horostam , May 30, 2017 at 4:46 pm

contrary to what is taught by the traditional left in America, Iranians widely believe that it was Carter's decision to get rid of the Shah and install the islamic regime which would fit with the general pattern in the middle east. they also believe that it was british agents who spurred the unrest. All this "backlash from Mossadeg in the 50's" narrative is not held by actual iranians at all

McWatt , May 30, 2017 at 6:12 pm

Not only should everyone read "The Quiet American" but the movie is also a must see.

This one book and movie show the world the evil of imperial desire.

robnume , May 30, 2017 at 7:16 pm

I agree, McWatt. I am a huge Graham Greene fan; I have almost all of his books.

I can only assume that you've seen both versions of the movie. Which do you prefer and why?

Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author , May 30, 2017 at 7:59 pm

I agree, the book's a must-read. And prescient, too– published in 1955.

Killing Hope U. S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II (9781567510522) William Blum Books

Amazon.com

Mike Baum December 23, 2000

A fine book. This classical liberal gives an A+.,

William Blum has written a book whose subject should be of interest to all Americans who believe in freedom.

Well-informed readers may already be familiar with the basic idea. In brief, the U.S. Government during the latter half of the twentieth century waged numerous secret little wars, of one kind or another, against foreign governments and groups of which it did not approve. The avowed purpose was usually to contain a perceived communist menace. In actuality, what might be called communist means were employed to achieve this end. These means involved spying, wiretapping, propaganda at home and abroad; the rigging of or interfering with elections; the granting of monetary and military aid to dictatorships and violent opposition groups; the training of same in methods of subversion, torture and terror. All this and more was done without Congressional approval or oversight. The American people were lied to by government officials to keep it that way. A complaisant media helped it happen. To some extent, it is still happening today.

The above is fairly common knowledge. However, though it breaks little new ground, Mr. Blum's book's sheer comprehensiveness makes it an invaluable resource, which is my first reason for recommending it. In 383 packed pages of narrative appended with 56 pages of source citations, Mr. Blum presents the essential facts--and horrors--of more than 55 U.S. military/CIA foreign interventions since WWII. For readers ignorant of these goings-on, the total impact will be mind-blowing. For those, such as myself, already somewhat acquainted with them, the effect is still staggering. Noam Chomsky, quoted on the back cover, calls it "Far and away the best book on the topic." I see no reason to dispute him.

My second reason for recommending this book is for what it shows about America today. And it is not that America is the Great Satan. It is true that America may be thought of, with some justice, as a terrorist country that has earned the world's hatred. But to use this fact, as do some leftists, for the sole purpose of bashing America, is unconstructive and wrong. Mr. Blum does not choose to focus on it (which does not surprise me), but the crucial message I see stamped in blood onto the pages of his book is of the disastrous consequences of our government's executive branch being unconstrained by its proper constitutional limits. This growth of executive power had several causes in the twentieth century, which the book shows in action as part of the reasoning behind the government's doing what it did. Overblown fears of communist world conquest; an altruistic desire to bring democracy to the world's benighted peoples; an ill-defined "national interest" with no objective standards to keep its pursuit in check--these all and more combined to expand the power of the executive branch to a level unknown in the history of our republic. The evils subsequently committed by the Presidency, the CIA and other executive agencies were necessary consequences of their having such arbitrary power at their disposal. If you want the real lesson from *Killing Hope*, this is it. Its 55 chapters read like case studies of what can and must happen when the exercise of executive discretion and secrecy is allowed, by Congressional and philosophical default, to grow unchecked in the foreign policy arena.

The Founding Fathers, were they alive today, would be shocked and appalled, but not surprised. As James Madison said, "The management of foreign relations appears to be the most susceptible of abuse of all the trusts committed to a Government." The Founders saw this firsthand as they fought a war against a world power that in the eighteenth century occupied a position similar, in certain relevant respects, to America's today (though America's actions have been more destructive than Great Britain's ever were); and they designed a new form of government to prevent such tyrannical abuse in the future. Mr. Blum demonstrates that perhaps millions of people--some Americans, but mostly those non-Americans who used to look to America for inspiration and hope--have died as a result of the corruption of the constitutional government the Founders designed. I believe, meaningfully, that America is the greatest country in the world--with respect to her spirit and her original founding principles, if not to what she has become today. Islamic militants and others who denounce America for her embodying Western civilization's greatest achievments are wrong. But they do have an excuse. Instead of being a beacon, lighting the way to liberty and progress, America herself has tragically become a symbol of oppression for many of the world's oppressed. As the title of Mr. Blum's book implies, the actions of America's unaccountable government are "killing" these people's "hope." *Killing Hope* shows us what is wrong with America and the kind of government we must return to if we are to fix her.

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A Customer

Absolutely incredible; a revelation, October 17, 1999

All my life, when someone happened to criticize the American military interventions abroad, I heard my American friends justify them as "humanitarian missions" designed to help out the oppressed and promote the noble causes of democracy and human rights. I knew this to be grossly untrue, but lacked the specific arguments to counter these claims. Not anymore. Blum's book is singular in the sense that it's the first book I've seen that brought together all the historical evidence of American injustice abroad from WWII till the mid-nineties into one volume. I would also like to emphasize that, unlike many other authors on both sides of the barricades, Blum almost never indulges in idle accusatory speculation. Every fact stated in the book is backed by rock-hard documentation, and every conjecture is a legitimate extrapolation from these facts. Now some readers have criticized the book for "not exposing the crimes of the Soviet Union and China", but they forget that this is a book on the US, not the Soviet bloc; in truth, Blum is in no way condoning Moscow's actions around the world either. Moreover, if one compares the number of books exposing Russia and China with the number of books exposing the US, it would be fair even if a thousand books like this were written. And shame on those who say that the American foreign policy abroad has changed for the better in the nineties.

Chris (Washington state, USA) - See all my reviews(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)

Brilliant and well written scholarship, August 30, 2000

In this book, former CIA employee William Blum, more or less analyzes the efforts of the CIA and U.S. government to maintain the status quo in the third world after World Two. He notes in his introductions, that the Bolshevik takeover of Russia in 1917 was regard hysterically by Western elites who immediatley invaded Russia, usuccessfully trying to overthrow the Bolsheviks, while their organs of opinion, exposed in the 1921 Walter Lipmann-Charles Merz study, such as the New York Times reported all sorts of wild stories about Bolesheviks eating Children and making all women property of the state, and reported every unsubstantiated rumor every day that the Bolsheviks were about to be defeated. The Boleshevik revolution, as anathema as it was to genuine populism to say the least, was the first major example of an alternative to the capitalist/colonial world system and was feared by Western elites for that reason.

After World War two, the United States emerged as the supreme power of the world and its only rival was the Soviet Union, which had gobbled up East Europe whose markets had traditionally been dominated by the Western powers. In Italy, Greece, Indochina and elsewhere Communists had gained great popular support, independent of any aid from the Soviet Union, for their opposition to fascism and the old colonial order or status quo. In Italy, the United States almost single handedly engineered the defeat of the very popular Communists in the 1948 election and in Greece they set up a terror and torture regime composed of many Nazi collaborators, and set up a similar regime in South Vietnam to destroy the 1954 Geneva accords.

Throughout this book, there are dozens of instances of CIA and U.S. government operations designed to subvert even the most mildly social democratic governments or engaged in activities like funding innumerable newspapers and labor unions to help subvert the target country. There is the overthrow of the liberal democratic capitalist regime in Guatemala in 1954 after it tried to decrease the power of the United Fruit corporation in their country and permitted civil liberties to communists and finally after years of being denied it from the U.S. or any other source imported a small boatload of arms from the communist block at which point the maniac John Foster Dulles declared that the communists were establishing a beachead in Cetral America designed to overtake the helpless United States , since which Guatemala has turned into a hell on earth, with a series of U.S. backed tin-pot Hitlers. There is the story of the U.S. engaging in the assasination of at least 20,000 South Vietnamese in "Operation Phoenix" or using such instruments of "interrogation" as the Tiger cage and the water board, after which the many victims began to make the trials and tribulation that our heroic B-52 flyers who were shot down and taken captive by the wicked North Vietnamese who didn't think too kindly of all the bombing and napalming of their people.

There is the story of the U.S. overthrowing the right wing populist prime minister Mohammed Mossadegh in Iran in 1953, after he nationalized his country's oil supply, restoring the shah to power whose regime's human rights violations were described by Amnesty International in 1976 as "the worst in the world." There is the story of Green Beret training and much other aid being supplied to the military and their associated death squads in El Salvador which were responsible for most of the deaths in El Salvador during the 80's, as is now quietly conceded by the U.S. government and media. There is the story of the U.S. training the thugs maintained by the Duvaliers in their dictatorship in Haiti and their efforts to undermine the populist priest Jean Bertrand Aristide. There is the story of the United States overthrowing the mildly social democratic regime of Jao Goulart in Brazil setting up a terror and torture regime military regime in 1964. There is the story of the United States launching a campaign of terror and sabotoge against Cuba when Castro took over which has lasted to this day, using such individuals as Orlando Bosch and Luis Posada Carrilles, inevitably driving Castro into the arms of the Soviet Union (the previous dictator, U.S. supported Bautista, had included communists in his cabinet and the Cuban communists were highly ambivalent about Castro). There is the United States overthrowing Indonesian president Sukarno in 1965 on rather dubious charges of communist plotting, completely eliminating the communist party PKI which U.S. officials recognized was the only mass-based political party in Indonesia and that it had gained its support through democratic methods, butchering at least a half a million landless peasants (the PKI's base of support) and installing the barbaric Suharto dictarship which proceeded to plunder the country in cooperation with multinational corporations and butcher 200,000 more in the U.S. backed invasion of East Timor beginning in 1975.

There is the story of of the United States pouring tens of millions of dollars into Chile beginning in 1958 to the political opponents of Salvadore Allende and when he was finally elected in 1970, the U.S. proceeded to destroy the economy ("make the economy scream" was Nixon's words in a memo after Allende was elected later documented by the Church Senate committee) and carry out other acts of subversion, paving the way for Pinochet to seize power.

The common response to these revelations is the rather cowardly "Well, it was the Cold War and the Soviets were infiltrating these countries and anyways it's in the past so..." Blum shows that in many instances the only evidence of Communist subversion was U.S. government assertions, ussually accepted gravely by the "liberal" media and the indoctrinated American public, or at best grossly fabricated or distored satellite pictures or "discoveries" of "massive" weapons caches (as in Grenada in 1983). Or the case of Brazil, overthrowing the democrat Goulart in 1964, on the evidence-free theory that communists were about to take over the government and that Goulart was too close to the Soviet Union, following which the military dictatorship greatly expanded Brazil's trade and took great amounts of aid from the Soviet Union. Blum also briefly notes that the 1976-83 "dirty war" dictatorship in Argentina had extensive support from both the United States and the Soviet Union.

What I have outlined above is highly insufficent to describe what is in this book. There are more than fifty five chapters in this 383 page book. Despite its small print and rather heavy documentaion, the book is pretty easy to read. The author's prose is very clear and his ideas are clearly stated and he often shows great learning and even wit.

[May 28, 2017] Al-Qaedas Godfather Is Dead - Good Riddance

Notable quotes:
"... Brzezinski was the godfather of al-Qaeda and similar groups. ..."
"... As National Security Advisor of U.S. President Jimmy Carter Brzezinski devised the strategy of using religiously motivated radical militants against secular governments and their people. He sent Saudi financed Wahhabi nuts to fight the government of Afghanistan before the USSR intended to send its military in support that government. His policy of rallying Jihadis (vid) caused millions of death. ..."
"... I long recall the Soviet embassy sending an official letter across town - Washington - to point out that one day the U S would bitterly regret having instigated religious fundamentalism as a weapon against Soviet secularism in central asia . Reading of this all those years ago I had a feeling of great foreboding . ..."
"... He just expanded its use outside of the Middle East and made it far more visible and militant. It had already been used against the secular states in the Middle East such as Egypt under Nasser with the assistance of Saudi Arabia. ..."
"... As to Zbigboy, the chessboard was his manifesto on divide-and-conquer and playing groups of peoples against each other. It is also a mate of Kissinger (PNAC, etc) that no state or group should be allowed to rise to dominate or influence a region. ..."
"... The USG has been backing gibbering Wahabi lunatics, easily the source of 90% of "Muslim" terrorism, against secular Arab governments since the Eisenhower Administration. ..."
"... Burying Brzezinski and Kissinger does not end ANYTHING. They (and their ilk) leave behind a thoroughly and profoundly sick U.S. and western states loaded with new generations of psychopaths. In fact, getting rid of every last psychopath in ANY western government (parliament) fixes nothing because the organizations themselves ensure that new psychopaths will quickly bubble to the top. ..."
"... Indeed, beginning in the second half of America's 20th century up until now, one can see Nietzsche's maxim about fighting monsters being played out and revealing the greatness of his thought. This has culminated in such a way that Lavrov even said that America media has become remniscent of the Soviet Pravda. No argument here. ..."
"... He was definitely not an architect of American deep state. That was not his job. He was an architect of American Empire's foreign policy of global hegemony. Like Kissinger and Wolfowitz. ..."
"... Perhaps it worth noting that in Brzez's last year he basically retracted the thesis that he presented in The Great Chessboard . See this counterpunch article by Mike Whitney. Brzez was realistic enough to see that breaking up the China-Russia-Iran alliance was not going to work and maybe we should do deals with them ..."
"... Brzezinski was a diseased, psychopathic human being that - through the mechanisms of the state - caused unimaginable pain and suffering throughout the world (directly or indirectly) because of his psychopathy. Not by himself, of course. The guy should have been contained and treated like the diseased person he was, not elevated to positions as a diplomat or counselor to national leaders. A healthy society should shun psychopaths, not bumble along oblivious to the harm they cause. ..."
"... 'In fact, getting rid of every last psychopath in ANY western government (parliament) fixes nothing because the organizations themselves ensure that new psychopaths will quickly bubble to the top.' ..."
"... There's people with weird, dangerous or maybe 'psychopathic' leanings in every country and every society, they're part of humanity. But when they 'systematically' get to positions of influence and power, there's something wrong with said system: It seems to reward individual psychopathology, rather than humanism and cooperation. ..."
"... Zbig was an intelligent guy for sure, and it's not easy to replace someone like him. But his teachings will cause trouble for another while - afaik, there is no effective counter-strategy yet, or is there? Can a government win against fundamentalist militants with limited violence, e.g. by isolating them and exposing their inhumane regime? ..."
"... His worst crime, with Carter, IMO, was trying successfully to manipulate the U.S.S.R. to invade Afghanistan. All of Carter's outrage over the invasion was a lot of baloney. They were not exactly being the friends of Afghanistan they pretended to be. This was worse then later arming the jihadists. ..."
"... The funny/ interesting thing is how this US/ western control over the rest of the world is habitually described by code expressions such as 'maintaining the international order' or 'stabilize global order'. ..."
"... It's all about bullshit + bullying. Luxuriously-funded think/spin tanks make up the bullshit and feed it to people in the MSM capable of bullying (and diminishing the reputation of) persuasive critics of the bullshit. ..."
"... While I agree with you that he should "burn in hell" he hardly devised anything. With his background and cold war at the time, he was useful idiot for Americans and his masters. And there is plenty of them in each administration. Trump has one, some idiot from Hungary. Brzezinski's "strategy" was simply copied from the others mainly from Nazis, just as was pretty much everything else. If you read a book from Ian Johnson https://www.amazon.com/Mosque-Munich-Nazis-Muslim-Brotherhood/dp/0547423179 that should be clear. ..."
"... Ian Johnson mentioned in one of its clip a guy from Eisenhower's administration, "devoted catholics" (per IJ) who devised this strategy, and yet again that strategy simply was inherited from the Nazi who used it to fight Soviets. ..."
"... On deep state - it first manifested itself in the open when JFK was assassinated - preceding ZB. But he became a visible part of it, no question. There is something wrong with the way humans manage power. ..."
May 27, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
The ruthless U.S. imperialist Zbigniew Brzezinski died last night. Good riddance. Brzezinski was the godfather of al-Qaeda and similar groups.

As National Security Advisor of U.S. President Jimmy Carter Brzezinski devised the strategy of using religiously motivated radical militants against secular governments and their people. He sent Saudi financed Wahhabi nuts to fight the government of Afghanistan before the USSR intended to send its military in support that government. His policy of rallying Jihadis (vid) caused millions of death. Brzezinski did not regret that:

What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

Brzezinski hailed from a Polish nobility family in Galicia, now west Ukraine. (Galicia is, not by chance, also the place of origin of today's Ukrainian neo-nazis.) The family fled Poland after its German/Soviet partition and and the socialization of the vast nobility properties during and after the second world war. Zbigniew Brzezinski hate of anything socialist and Russian derived from that.

The 9/11 attacks, the war on Syria, the recent massacre in Manchester and the murder of 28 Copts yesterday in Egypt are direct consequences of Brzezinski's "some stirred-up Moslems" strategy of exporting revolutions . The growth of the fundamentalist Saudi Wahhabi creed, a danger to all mankind , was prepared and propagated by him.

May he burn in hell - soon to be joined by the other "total whore" and fellow war criminal Henry Kissinger,

Lea | May 27, 2017 7:24:44 AM | 5
Trouble is, it's not about an individual, it's about a system that relies on weapon sales and fleecing the populations to survive, i.e, the global swamp. For instance, how on earth can anybody with half a brain not know that Saudi Arabia is the matrix of Wahhabi-Salafi terror? When you see Trump ignoring such common knowledge to push his weapons sales (and surrealistically faulting Iran), you know that Wahhabi cutthroats will carry on being used by the CIA, you know that money dictates how these swamp creatures see the world, and you know that one Brzezinski less will not do anything to solve the problem.

It is a sick, psychopathic system. It's full of loonies like Brzezinski and unfit for humans. BTW, that individual was a really nasty piece of work, but what about those who listened to him when obviously, he belonged in a straitjacket?

So, beyond complaining, what do we do?

ashley albanese | May 27, 2017 7:32:35 AM | 6
I long recall the Soviet embassy sending an official letter across town - Washington - to point out that one day the U S would bitterly regret having instigated religious fundamentalism as a weapon against Soviet secularism in central asia . Reading of this all those years ago I had a feeling of great foreboding .
Ghostship | May 27, 2017 7:44:03 AM | 7
As National Security Advisor of U.S. President Jimmy Carter Brzezinski devised the strategy of using religiously motivated radical militants against secular governments and their people.
He just expanded its use outside of the Middle East and made it far more visible and militant. It had already been used against the secular states in the Middle East such as Egypt under Nasser with the assistance of Saudi Arabia.
JK | May 27, 2017 8:03:15 AM | 8
Well said , concise and to the point. I bought his book The Grand Chessboard just before the Ukraine coup and it as radical as his musings were, they did make much of the foreign policy of Clinton & Obama. A prime point in the book other than establishing control of Central Asia was to also prevent Russia, China and Iran from forming an anti American axis. Also mention of an EU without Germany or France being obsolete.

Piotr Berman | May 27, 2017 8:57:20 AM | 13
Just a bit of biographical correction. Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth did not have formally hereditary aristocracy, so while Brzezinskis are a "noble family" with a Horns , this coat of arms is shared by 332 families, some very powerful, and some, like Brzezinski's family, without any estates. Grandfather of Brzezinski was a judge in Austrian empire and lived pretty much in the center of Galicia, now in Poland very close to the boundary with Ukraine. Father of Brzezinski was an officer during the wars with Galician Ukrainians (Western Ukrainian Republic) and Soviet Union in 1918-1922, and later had a successful bureaucratic carrier, becoming Polish consul in Montreal in 1937. There Zbigniew finish high school and studied at McGill University.

The link with pro-Nazi Ukrainian nationalists of western Ukraine is rather ambiguous. He surely knew about them, why, his father was an officer fighting with these guys, and later they formed a terrorist movement within Poland (that won the western Ukraine in 1918-22). Bandera made his name by organizing a slaying of a Polish interior minister. And later "all of them" were anti-Communist exiles in Canada.

One could credit Brzezinski in creating the policy of "humanitarian intervention". It de-emphasized and reduced the support for the retrograde dictators in Latin America and focused on the nipping of the "totalitarian menace" of the Soviet zone of influence. Supporting Islamic radicals in Afghanistan, Sudan, Pakistan etc. was the best tool at hand (South African regime slugging it out with Marxist movements in Portuguese Angola and Mozambique were not as good, plus, purely local in its capabilities). Back in 1970-ties it did not look bad, in the retrospect, it was the most successful lipstick brand launched in XX century (I live it as an open question who needs lipsticks in this context).

Curtis | May 27, 2017 9:34:13 AM | 15
Trond 11

That was funny. I would like to see Team Bush buried under shithouses in Iraq too. At least one Iraqi got to throw a shoe.

As to Zbigboy, the chessboard was his manifesto on divide-and-conquer and playing groups of peoples against each other. It is also a mate of Kissinger (PNAC, etc) that no state or group should be allowed to rise to dominate or influence a region.

rkka | May 27, 2017 10:01:36 AM | 16
@Ghostship 7

Correct. The USG has been backing gibbering Wahabi lunatics, easily the source of 90% of "Muslim" terrorism, against secular Arab governments since the Eisenhower Administration. This is a big reason those secular Arab governments became dictatorships, what with the local US Embassy constantly fomenting & instigating coups by GWL.

ZBiggy just turned it up to 11.

PavewayIV | May 27, 2017 11:47:37 AM | 20
I wonder if Brzezinski or Kissinger ever read Lobaczewski et. al regarding psychopathy.

One of Lobaczewski's long-gone collaborators postulated that any organization opposing a large, organizational pathocracy ('the west' vs. the Soviet state at the time) was itself subject to becoming a pathocracy.

The idea wasn't one of infection, but more of the almost automatic tendency of an organization to enable and empower its own psychopaths in an attempt to counter those of the other organization. Initially, it's fighting fire with fire. But when the 'enemy' ceases to exist or be a threat, you can't simply turn off your own state's psychopaths because they are most likely running the place.

Burying Brzezinski and Kissinger does not end ANYTHING. They (and their ilk) leave behind a thoroughly and profoundly sick U.S. and western states loaded with new generations of psychopaths. In fact, getting rid of every last psychopath in ANY western government (parliament) fixes nothing because the organizations themselves ensure that new psychopaths will quickly bubble to the top.

Lobaczewski's group was not JUST trying to explain why otherwise normal 'little people' turned into psychopaths so readily in the (then) Soviet East. They were trying to understand why otherwise good nations turned into something sick and evil themselves in the process of 'saving' another nation from evil. Their magic cure was nothing more than awareness of the risk and basic prevention - wash your damn hands after leaving the bathroom.

We have rid ourselves of Brzezinski but have done nothing to recognize the disease, much less attempt any sort of remedy. We go back to our food preparation jobs after leaving the bathroom hoping evil spirits will not randomly make our customers sick.

Brzezinski's passing has all the significance of driving by a random light post on a cross-country trip.

c1ue | May 27, 2017 12:18:41 PM | 22
I have no love for ZBig, but it is far from clear he is an "architect" of the American Deep State. ZBig is exactly like the Libyan, Syrian, Afghan expats sheltered and fed by the US; they are just the latest of a rogue's gallery of foreigners who are useful to American foreign policy.

Not to say ZBig had no influence, but there's a big difference between running in front of the pack and leading it. Freeland and cohorts in Canada are clearly leading. ZBig? Much less clear.

NemesisCalling | May 27, 2017 12:28:32 PM | 24
@20 paveway

Indeed, beginning in the second half of America's 20th century up until now, one can see Nietzsche's maxim about fighting monsters being played out and revealing the greatness of his thought. This has culminated in such a way that Lavrov even said that America media has become remniscent of the Soviet Pravda. No argument here.

hopehely | May 27, 2017 12:37:18 PM | 27
Posted by: c1ue | May 27, 2017 12:18:41 PM | 22
I have no love for ZBig, but it is far from clear he is an "architect" of the American Deep State.
He was definitely not an architect of American deep state. That was not his job. He was an architect of American Empire's foreign policy of global hegemony. Like Kissinger and Wolfowitz.

ToivoS | May 27, 2017 1:54:35 PM | 33
Perhaps it worth noting that in Brzez's last year he basically retracted the thesis that he presented in The Great Chessboard . See this counterpunch article by Mike Whitney. Brzez was realistic enough to see that breaking up the China-Russia-Iran alliance was not going to work and maybe we should do deals with them.

He seemed to realize that US policy to capture the central Asian republics in order to drive a wedge between those those three civilizations was hopeless. This does not atone for his crimes but does indicate that he had some grasp of reality. This last article was barely noted our MSM which seems to be still clamoring for the Great Chessboard strategy.

PavewayIV | May 27, 2017 2:17:47 PM | 34
hopehely@28 - No. Read my post again. His passing is INSIGNIFICANT in the larger scheme of things. Nothing changes, nothing ends - the U.S. and the west haven't learned a thing. We remain in the diseased, psychopathic state that he (as well as many others) ushered in. Many more like him will follow. As always (at least in the U.S.) we will continue - with utter futility - to try to fix everything with our horribly debased voting process and the thoroughly-rigged, useless 'laws'. And we will continue to fail.

Brzezinski was a diseased, psychopathic human being that - through the mechanisms of the state - caused unimaginable pain and suffering throughout the world (directly or indirectly) because of his psychopathy. Not by himself, of course. The guy should have been contained and treated like the diseased person he was, not elevated to positions as a diplomat or counselor to national leaders. A healthy society should shun psychopaths, not bumble along oblivious to the harm they cause.

The organization of the state should be somewhat self-aware of the effects of diseased people like Brzezinski and protect and hopefully rid itself from that kind of influence. It can't (in the U.S., anyway) because 'the state' is diseased itself and that disease is perpetuated through psychopathic individuals inside that benefit from a diseased state. It's a self-reinforcing, symbiotic relationship. Brzezinski's disease was a part of that. Once again, his death changed nothing.

"...you are just trying to suppress your schadenfreude..."

As far as his death on a personal level - I simply didn't know the guy. I assume he had family and friends that will mourn his passing. Their pain makes me neither jolly nor happy. There is no schadenfreude - I feel sad for them regardless of my thoughts about Brzezinski.

"...because gosh it is so totally inappropriate for a sophisticated and rational intellectual to fell like that..."

Now you're accusing me of being 'a sophisticated and rational intellectual' ? Well... there's certainly no reason to get nasty about it and call me names like that, you bastard!

jfl | May 27, 2017 4:10:18 PM | 37
@pw. 'In fact, getting rid of every last psychopath in ANY western government (parliament) fixes nothing because the organizations themselves ensure that new psychopaths will quickly bubble to the top.'

now you're talking. my only real quarrel with your 'psychopathic' analysis was its seeming identification of a cabal of evil, demented individuals as the seat of the problem. i think this is too 'interior' an analysis. we all have the potential to see ourselves as the driven agents we are most of the time, but its a full-time job, and by definition 'success' is a statistical measurement.

there is such a thing as society, regardless maggie thatcher's dictum, and individual humans are suspended within it ... and often as oblivious to that fact as the proverbial fish are to the water they swim and breathe in.

to master our societies requires our collective effort. unless and until we organize to do so we'll continue spinning in our psychopathic gyre(s). what force on earth is weaker than the feeble strength of one? but in union we might be strong.

i think it's the simple refusal to accept that our 'outside' contingencies are more than a match for our 'inside' ones that's holding us back. we're all stuck in an imaginary world that began with our individual births and will expire with our individual deaths. so the race is continually reborn in 'magnificent' isolation, now fractured into 7 and a half billion pieces.

something has to be done about this for us to continue and collectively, we're the only ones here to do it.

smuks | May 27, 2017 5:28:21 PM | 39
@Paveway

I think I agree with you, though I find the use of psychological & medicinal terminology in political contexts rather problematic - it usually doesn't enhance comprehension imo.

There's people with weird, dangerous or maybe 'psychopathic' leanings in every country and every society, they're part of humanity. But when they 'systematically' get to positions of influence and power, there's something wrong with said system: It seems to reward individual psychopathology, rather than humanism and cooperation.

Zbig was an intelligent guy for sure, and it's not easy to replace someone like him. But his teachings will cause trouble for another while - afaik, there is no effective counter-strategy yet, or is there? Can a government win against fundamentalist militants with limited violence, e.g. by isolating them and exposing their inhumane regime?

@jfl

I think you misunderstand something here. It's (afaics) absolutely not about a 'cabal of evil, demented individuals', almost on the contrary. But I like the picture of society as water surrounding a fish - or the air around us, which we don't see nor think about and take for granted.

kooshy | May 27, 2017 5:54:10 PM | 41
"He was definitely not an architect of American deep state. "
Posted by: hopehely | May 27, 2017 12:37:18 PM | 27

The SOB bastard was the co-founder of trilateral commission, with David Rockefeller.

Edward | May 27, 2017 5:55:01 PM | 42
His worst crime, with Carter, IMO, was trying successfully to manipulate the U.S.S.R. to invade Afghanistan. All of Carter's outrage over the invasion was a lot of baloney. They were not exactly being the friends of Afghanistan they pretended to be. This was worse then later arming the jihadists.

smuks | May 27, 2017 8:21:46 PM | 47
@Paveway

The funny/ interesting thing is how this US/ western control over the rest of the world is habitually described by code expressions such as 'maintaining the international order' or 'stabilize global order'.

The US has been an expansionist country long before Zbig, cf. the Monroe Doctrine. Just as Britain and other European colonial powers before...

But more specifically, I really found myself wondering if any effective strategy exists to counter the deployment of jihadist militias against 'uncooperative' states. Other than overwhelming military force. China has been fairly successful, but at the price of a very virulent anti-Uyghur racism.

Hoarsewhisperer | May 27, 2017 11:43:53 PM | 48
@Paveway
The funny/ interesting thing is how this US/ western control over the rest of the world is habitually described by code expressions such as 'maintaining the international order' or 'stabilize global order'.
...
Posted by: smuks | May 27, 2017 8:21:46 PM | 47

It's less complex/mysterious than it seems at first glance.

It's all about bullshit + bullying. Luxuriously-funded think/spin tanks make up the bullshit and feed it to people in the MSM capable of bullying (and diminishing the reputation of) persuasive critics of the bullshit.

My preferred classic example was the role of Thomas L Friedman in silencing critics of Bush II's Iraq War. TLF accused them of Moral Equivalence and the Jew-controlled media made sure that his bullying received superior publicity throughout the West.

It's easy to dismissively overlook the Jew-controlled media factor but the Jews, more than any other interest group, needed control over Western Media to suppress the criminality of the Israel Project and to whitewash it by flogging the Holocaust to death if anyone dared to mention Jews and Genocide in the same sentence. And the Media Acquisition program was well underway before WWII broke out.

psychohistorian | May 28, 2017 2:27:55 AM | 51
@ Bob in Portland who suggested Trump release the still classified JFK files to protect himself against the CIA. Have you been smoking some of that early Obama Hopium again?

Trump is a wannnabe to the upper crust of elite in the middle of a dust up between them and the newbies wanting to act like emperors.....and all is cover for more human suffering and repression except for the core acolytes of the God of Mammon

And the CIA is a tool of the God of Mammon religion that does what it is told.

Neretva_43 | May 28, 2017 6:43:22 AM | 54
"As National Security Advisor of U.S. President Jimmy Carter Brzezinski devised the strategy of using religiously motivated radical militants against secular governments and their people."

While I agree with you that he should "burn in hell" he hardly devised anything. With his background and cold war at the time, he was useful idiot for Americans and his masters. And there is plenty of them in each administration. Trump has one, some idiot from Hungary. Brzezinski's "strategy" was simply copied from the others mainly from Nazis, just as was pretty much everything else. If you read a book from Ian Johnson https://www.amazon.com/Mosque-Munich-Nazis-Muslim-Brotherhood/dp/0547423179 that should be clear.

Ian Johnson mentioned in one of its clip a guy from Eisenhower's administration, "devoted catholics" (per IJ) who devised this strategy, and yet again that strategy simply was inherited from the Nazi who used it to fight Soviets.

By the way a society (if the US is such thing), or the US Gov. generate these murderers and apparently the new ones are in ample supply. That's the nature of system.

Casowary Gentry | May 28, 2017 10:38:09 AM | 58
The Poles are real soreheads about Russia and to let one of them be an architect of American foreign policy was a boneheaded move, the man operated according to a deeply held personal animus towards Russia and letting him serve in such a pivotal capacity was a big mistake. In general, letting foreigners fill important policy making roles should be prohibited; they carry too much baggage.

GoraDiva | May 28, 2017 5:04:11 PM | 60
For the record, good riddance to ZB, who was no more than a dark stain on most of the humanity. Maybe he'll come back as a poisonous snake...
@7
You're right in some ways. Zia-ul-Haq originated the idea of drawing Russians in. Also, the Brits used Muslim Brotherhood against Egypt's Nasser (except, they then killed the US-preferred Sadat). So much for blowback...
@12
I'd be curious about Carter, too. Never heard him address it. He signed the directive to entice Russians into Afg. in July '79 - and then feigned HUGE surprise on TV when they marched in (and BTW, they were invited by the then-Afg. govt.; it was not really an invasion). (It was stupid of them, of course.)

On deep state - it first manifested itself in the open when JFK was assassinated - preceding ZB. But he became a visible part of it, no question.
There is something wrong with the way humans manage power.

[Mar 03, 2017] The Brothers John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War by Stephen Kinzer

Notable quotes:
"... Allen Dulles masterminded the coup that turned Iranian prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh out of office and installed the Shah on the Peacock Throne. Less than a year later he presided over the operation that ousted Guatemalan president Jacobo Arbenz. He set in motion plots to assassinate Gamal Abdel Nasser in Egypt, Sukarno in Indonesia, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam, Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, and Fidel Castro in Cuba. He delegated to his deputy, Richard Bissell, leadership of the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba. ..."
"... Corporate greed is not new but for members of the US Congress and the Administartion to support corporate interests over Americans safety and put money ahead of the protection of the people of our country as well as the people of other nations is a violation of our US Constitution and these people should not be immune from prosecution. G.W. Bush destroyed the infrastructure of an entire country and he killed hundreds of thousand of innocent citizens just so Brown & Root and Halliburton, V.P. Cheney's company, could receive billions of dollars of US taxpayer monies to rebuild the very infrastructure that Bush destroyed that provided the life support for the people of Iraq. ..."
"... George W. Bush asked the question after 9/11-- "Why do they hate us?" The answer he came up with was, "Because of our Freedoms." When you read this book, you come face to face for the real reasons THEY (most of the rest of the world) hate us. It's because these Bush's "freedoms" are only for the United States, no other non-white, non-Christian, non-corporate cultures need apply. ..."
"... The missionary Christian, Corporatism of the Dulles Brothers--John, the former head of the largest corporate law firm in the world, then Secretary of State, and his brother Allen, the head of the CIA all the way from Korea through Vietnam -- constitutes the true behavioral DNA of America-in-the-world. It's enough to make you weep for the billions of people this country has deprived of freedom and security for the last sixty years. ..."
"... This book is, in fact, a MUST READ... for anyone who wants to know what their taxes have paid for in the last half century--for anyone who wants to know just exactly why the rest of the world wants either to attack us or throw us out of their countries. And a must read for anyone who no longer wishes their "representatives" in Washington to keep facilitating the stealing and killing all over the world and call it American Exceptionalism. ..."
"... Foster promptly works on a policy of "rollback" to replace the "containment" policy of Truman and Kennan. ..."
"... The 1953 coup of democratically elected Mohammed Mosaddegh in Iran was similar in the sense that it was made more urgent by Mosaddegh's nationalization of British oil interests after the Brits refused to let Mosaddegh audit their books or negotiate a better deal. ..."
"... Kinzer writes that Foster saw a danger in a country like Iran becoming prosperous and inspiring others toward neutrality that might result in eventual creep toward the USSR, hence he and others like him had to be eliminated. How much the coup was driven to help the UK is unknown. The blowback from intervention in South America and Iran has since come back to haunt the US in the form of skepticism and greater Leftist angst against the US and the 1979 overthrow of the Shah. ..."
"... This type of neutrality was against the Dulles' worldview, and in his memoir, Sukarno lamented "America, why couldn't you be my friend?" after the CIA spent a lot of manpower trying to topple his regime in 1958. There was also the training of Tibetan rebels in Colorado in 1957 and the ongoing plot to assassinate Congo's Lumumba, given with Ike's consent. ..."
"... Allen Dulles' reign at CIA reads like the nightmare everyone worried about "big government" warns you about. Experiments interrogating prisoners with LSD, the purchase to the movie rights of books like The Quiet American in order to sanitize them, planting stories in major newspapers, planting false documents in Joseph McCarthy's office to discredit him, along with the private armies and escapades. Dulles comes under official criticism by Doolittle, who wrote that he was a bad administrator, bad for morale, and had no accountability-- all of which was dismissed by Eisenhower who saw Allen as the indispensible man. ..."
"... When Castro seizes power in Cuba, the Eisenhower Administration made it official policy to depose him. ..."
"... Dulles' last act was on the Warren Commission investigating JFK's assassination. This was problematic because Dulles' goal was to keep CIA assassination operations in Cuba a secret. Kinzer writes of Lyndon Johnson's desire to make Oswald a lone gunman with no political attachments, which brings us to a whole other story. ..."
"... I was surprised that President Eisenhower, whose administration is commonly thought to be one of tranquility, approved toppling governments and assassinating leaders. In some ways, he was the front man, for instance urging Congress to approve funds for "maintenance of national independence" but really for fomenting a coup in Syria and installing a king in Saudi Arabia to get US friendly governments to oppose Gamal Nasser (p. 225). ..."
"... the story of these two scions of an American aristocratic family, who were fully steeped in Calvinistic Protestantism (and it's capitalist ethic) and unquestioningly convinced of American Exceptionalism and it's Manifest Destiny to lead the world and make it safe for democracy and American Business ..."
"... It is an exposition of the quintessential, archetypical American (WASP) mindset, worldview or psychology that has motivated our collective international behavior over the past six or seven decades. ..."
"... All State employees that don't hew the line are regularly fired or transferred to obscure jobs or roles and in place are pro-CIA hardliners. ..."
"... There is much here that further condemns Eisenhower. In many cases he fully supported and endorsed their plans while pretending not to, fully employing the most cynical of strategies; "plausible deniability". ..."
"... Having read the 2012 Eisenhower biography by Jean Edward Smith I was surprised here by the wealth of information that ties Eisenhower more directly to clandestine activities and their purposes. Particularly disappointing is his continues build up for the Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba after Kennedy's election but before he took office and will little effort to brief the incoming president. Similarly our Vietnam involvement in the 1950's was so deep already as to make a Kennedy pullout far more difficult. ..."
"... There is much here about these issues and the corrupt relationships between the Dulles's prior careers at Sullivan and Cromwell and their support of private interests while working at State and the CIA. ..."
"... At the heart of the story is the unfortunate belief by the brothers that if a country was not totally in agreement with American philosophy they were against us. Any nationalist leaders of a former colonial nation that believed in land reform or neutrality on the international scene had to be evil and must be destroyed. If they were not with us, they had to be communist. This American foreign policy changed the history of the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Africa and Central America. ..."
"... Its interesting to note that Kinzer asserts that on the death of Chief Justice Fred Vinson in 1953, Eisenhower offered the position of Chief Justice to John Foster Dulles. According to Kinzer, Dulles turned it down because he wanted to stay at the State Department. The story has always been that Ike had promised Earl Warren the first seat on the Supreme Court in exchange for his support in the 1952 election - Warren had been out maneuvered by Richard Nixon to get the bid for the vice presidency. How different legal history would have been had John Foster Dulles become Chief Justice! ..."
"... Author Stephen Kinzer explores the unique situation in which the intelligence gathering agency is also an actor. Throughout he illustrates how the relationship of their leaders enabled two agencies that would normally question and check each other, to work in seamless harmony to carry out the covert operations that both saw as primary instruments of American power. Behind them was President Eisenhower who had used covert operations during World War II and who approved their actions. In the end the author posits that the policies were the President's and the brothers were more his servants than his masters. ..."
Amazon.com

Mal Warwickon July 21, 2014

They shaped US foreign policy for decades to come

One of them was the most powerful US Secretary of State in modern times. The other built the CIA into a fearsome engine of covert war. Together, they shaped US foreign policy in the 1950s, with tragic consequences that came to light in the decades that followed. These were the Dulles brothers, Foster and Allen, born and reared in privilege, nephews of one Secretary of State and grandsons of another.

What they did in office

Allen Dulles masterminded the coup that turned Iranian prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh out of office and installed the Shah on the Peacock Throne. Less than a year later he presided over the operation that ousted Guatemalan president Jacobo Arbenz. He set in motion plots to assassinate Gamal Abdel Nasser in Egypt, Sukarno in Indonesia, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam, Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, and Fidel Castro in Cuba. He delegated to his deputy, Richard Bissell, leadership of the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba. Later, out of office, he chaired the Warren Commission on the assassination of John F. Kennedy. "'From the start, before any evidence was reviewed, he pressed for the final verdict that Oswald had been a crazed gunman, not the agent of a national and international conspiracy.'"

Foster Dulles repeatedly replaced US ambassadors who resisted his brother's assassination plots in countries where they served. Pathologically fearful of Communism, he publicly snubbed Chinese foreign minister Chou En-Lai, exacerbating the already dangerous tension between our two countries following the Korean War. The active role he took in preventing Ho Chi Minh's election to lead a united Vietnam led inexorably to the protracted and costly US war there. He reflexively rejected peace feelers from the Soviet leaders who succeeded Josef Stalin, intensifying and prolonging the Cold War. Earlier in life, working as the managing partner of Sullivan & Cromwell, the leading US corporate law firm, Foster had engineered many of the corporate loans that made possible Adolf Hitler's rise to power and the growth of his war machine.

What does it mean now?

At half a century's remove from the reign of the formidable Dulles brothers, with critical documents finally coming into the light of day, we can begin to assess their true impact on US history and shake our heads in dismay. However, during their time in office that spanned the eight years of Dwight Eisenhower's presidency and, in Allen's case, extended into Kennedy's, little was known to the public about about Allen's activities (or the CIA itself, for that matter), and Foster's unimaginative and belligerent performance at State was simply seen as a fair expression of the national mood, reflecting the fear that permeated the country during the most dangerous years of the Cold War.

Diving deeply into recently unclassified documents and other contemporaneous primary sources, Stephen Kinzer, author of The Brothers, has produced a masterful assessment of the roles played at the highest levels of world leadership by these two very dissimilar men. Kinzer is respectful throughout, but, having gained enough information to evaluate the brothers' performance against even their own stated goals, he can find little good to say other than that they "exemplified the nation that produced them. A different kind of leader would require a different kind of United States."

Their unique leadership styles

To understand Foster's style of leadership, consider the assessments offered by his contemporaries: Winston Churchill said "'Foster Dulles is the only case I know of a bull who carries his own china shop around with him.'"

Celebrated New York Times columnist James Reston "wrote that [Foster] had become a 'supreme expert' in the art of diplomatic blundering. 'He doesn't just stumble into booby traps. He digs them to size, studies them carefully, and then jumps.'"

Senator William Fulbright, chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said Foster "misleads public opinion, confuses it, [and] feeds it pap." "A foreign ambassador once asked Foster how he knew that the Soviets were tied to land reform in Guatemala. He admitted that it was 'impossible to produce evidence' but said evidence was unnecessary because of 'our deep conviction that such a tie must exist.'" (Sounds similar to the attitude of a certain 21st-century President, doesn't it?)

Allen, too, comes up very, very short: "He was not the brilliant spymaster many believed him to be. In fact, the opposite is true. Nearly every one of his major covert operations failed or nearly failed . . . [Moreover,] under Allen's lackadaisical leadership, the agency endlessly tolerated misfits." He left the CIA riddled with "lazy, alcoholic, or simply incompetent" employees.

Stephen Kinzer was for many years a foreign correspondent for the New York Times, reporting from more than fifty countries. The Brothers is his eighth nonfiction book. It's brilliant.

W. J. Haufon June 27, 2014

Without John Foster Dulles There Would Have Been No Hitler and No Nazi Germany!

After the Treaty of Versailles mandated the imposition of incredibly severe monetary reparations on Germany, John Foster Dulles in the 1930s, as a partner in his law firm of Sullivan and Cromwell, assembled a coalition of banks to lend Germany over $1 trillion, (in today's dollars), supposedly for them to pay these reparations. Had Foster not organized these massive bank loans to Hitler's Germany and organized the sale of raw materials such as cobalt to fabricate armor plating to build Germany's war machine, there would have been no Nazi war machine or an Adolf Hitler to kill millions of Americans, ally troops and civilians in a war that would have never happened.

As a reward our government appointed John Foster Dulles as Secretary of State so he could continue his war against democracy by orchestrating the overthrow of democratically elected leaders such as the Prime Minister of Iran to restore the Shah, and then continuing his reign of terror against other democratically elected governments such the CIA overthrow of the President of Guatemala in 1954 by his brother Allen, Director of the CIA, and installing a US controlled puppet President so the United Fruit could continued its monopolistic hold on the banana industry in that country and eventually throughout Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Oh did I mention that JFD was a stockholder in United Fruit. Corporate greed is not new but for members of the US Congress and the Administartion to support corporate interests over Americans safety and put money ahead of the protection of the people of our country as well as the people of other nations is a violation of our US Constitution and these people should not be immune from prosecution. G.W. Bush destroyed the infrastructure of an entire country and he killed hundreds of thousand of innocent citizens just so Brown & Root and Halliburton, V.P. Cheney's company, could receive billions of dollars of US taxpayer monies to rebuild the very infrastructure that Bush destroyed that provided the life support for the people of Iraq.

Our Founding Fathers would never had fought to build a country of democratic principals if they knew that the political representatives in this country would worship money and support corporate greed over American human rights and freedoms.

G.W. Bush said that the attacks on 9-11 were because "they hate our freedoms". What a disgrace for a President to lie and not say it was because we have been interfering and overthrowing democratically elected governments for decades. Shame on you Mr. Bush, but you will meet your Maker one day and you can explain why you killed so many people just so you and your friends could receive billions of dollars in profits. "May God Have Mercy on Your Very Soul"

Mike Feder/Sirius XM and PRN.FM Radio on October 11, 2013

Best Political/Historical Book in Years

You know those reviews clips, headlines or ads that say "Must Read" or, "...if you only read one book this year..."
I have to say, with all the books I've read before and am reading currently, this one is absolutely the most eye-opening, informative and provocative one I've come across in many years.

And--after all I've read about American politics and culture--after all the experts I've interviewed on my radio show... I shouldn't be shocked any more. But the scope of insanity, corruption and hypocrisy revealed in this history of the Dulles brothers is, in fact, truly shocking.

Just when you thought you knew just how bad the United States has been in the world, you come across a history like this and you suddenly become aware of the real depths to which "our" government has sunk in subverting decency, freedom and democracy all over the world.

George W. Bush asked the question after 9/11-- "Why do they hate us?" The answer he came up with was, "Because of our Freedoms." When you read this book, you come face to face for the real reasons THEY (most of the rest of the world) hate us. It's because these Bush's "freedoms" are only for the United States, no other non-white, non-Christian, non-corporate cultures need apply.

The missionary Christian, Corporatism of the Dulles Brothers--John, the former head of the largest corporate law firm in the world, then Secretary of State, and his brother Allen, the head of the CIA all the way from Korea through Vietnam -- constitutes the true behavioral DNA of America-in-the-world. It's enough to make you weep for the billions of people this country has deprived of freedom and security for the last sixty years.

I grew up practically in love with America and the Declaration of Independence. When I was a kid the USA had just beaten the Nazis. I saw the picture of the marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima. I knew men in my neighborhood that had liberated concentration camps.

But they never taught us the real history of America in high school and barely at all in college. If they had given us a clear picture of our true history, there never would have been a Vietnam in the first place--and no Iraq or Afghanistan either; Global Banks wouldn't have gotten away with stealing all our money and crashing our economy and Christian fundamentalist and corporate puppets wouldn't have taken over our government.

Karma is real. You can't steal a whole country, kill and enslave tens of millions of human beings, assassinate democratically elected leaders of countries, bribe and corrupt foreign governments, train the secret police and arm the military of dictators for decades-- You cannot do all this and escape the judgment and the punishment of history.

This book is, in fact, a MUST READ... for anyone who wants to know what their taxes have paid for in the last half century--for anyone who wants to know just exactly why the rest of the world wants either to attack us or throw us out of their countries. And a must read for anyone who no longer wishes their "representatives" in Washington to keep facilitating the stealing and killing all over the world and call it American Exceptionalism.

I'll also add that Stephen Kinzer is also a terrific writer; clear, articulate, factual and dramatic. His inside the inner circle revelations of the Dulles brothers and their crimes is morbidly page-turning.

Chris on October 11, 2013

The Dark-side of American foreign policy

The American people and the world at large still feel the reverberations from the policies and adventures of the Dulles' brothers. They are in part to blame for our difficult relations with both Cuba and Iran. This history helps answer the question, "Why do they hate us?" The answer isn't our freedom, it's because we try to topple their governments.

The Dulles brother grew up in a privileged, religious environment. They were taught to see the world in strictly black and white. Both were well-educated at Groton and the Ivy League schools. Both worked on and off in the government, but spent a significant amount of time at the immensely powerful law firm, Sullivan & Cromwell. They had virtually identical world views but nearly opposite personalities. (John) Foster was dour, awkward, and straight-laced. Allen was outgoing, talkative, and had loose morals.

There's no need for a blow-by-blow of their lives in this review. The core of the book revolves around Foster Dulles as the Secretary of State under Eisenhower and Allen as the Director of the CIA. The center of the book is divided into six parts, each one dealing with a specific foreign intervention: Mossaddegh of Iran, Arbenz of Guatemala, Ho Chi Minh of Vietnam, Lumumba of the Congo, Sukarno of Indonesia and Castro of Cuba.

The Dulles view was that you were either behind the US 110% or a communist, with no room for neutrals. Neutrals were to be targeted for regime change. The author lays out explicitly all the dirty tricks our government tried on other world leaders, from poison to pornography. This dark side of American foreign policy can help Americans better understand our relationships with other countries.

My difficulty with this book is the final chapter. The author throws in some pop-psychology such as; people take in information that confirms their beliefs and reject contradictory information, we can be confident of our beliefs even when we're wrong, etc. The Dulles brothers are definite examples of these psychological aspects. Then the author says the faults of the Dulles brothers are the faults of American society, that we are the Dulles brothers. I felt like a juror in a murder trial during the closing statements, "It's not my client's fault, society is to blame!"

In most of America's foreign adventures, the American people have been tricked with half-truths and outright lies. Further more, these men received the best educations and were granted great responsibility. They should be held to a higher standard than "Oh well, everyone has their prejudices."

I agree with the author that the public should be more engaged in foreign policy and have a better understanding of our history with other nations. However, I think he goes too far in excusing their decisions because they supposedly had the same beliefs as many Americans.

Harry Glasson August 24, 2015

So Eisenhower wasn't really a "do nothing" president, but based on this book, I wish he had done less.

This is the most interesting and important book I have read in the past twenty or more years. Most Americans, myself included, considered John Foster Dulles a great Secretary of State, and few ordinary people knew Allen Dulles or had any idea how the CIA came to be what it is.

Learning the facts as they have been gradually made public by those who were witnesses, and others who researched and wrote about the behavior of the United States during the height of the Cold War has been an enlightening and saddening experience. I was in high school during Eisenhower's first term, in college during his 2nd term, in the Air Force during JFK's time in office and deployed to Key West during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.

My view of America was the same as that of most Americans. I was patriotic. I bought into the fear of Communist world dominance and the domino theory. But there was much that was being done in the name of fighting Communist domination around the world that was monumentally counterproductive, and contrary what we consider to be some of our basic principles.

This book helps fill important gaps in my knowledge. I highly recommend it to anyone who would like to know what really was going on during the Cold War, its impact on where we are today, and Kinzer's take on why it happened that way.

Mcgivern Owen L on August 15, 2015

The Cold War at it Core

This reviewer generally takes careful notes while he reads-the better to compose a future review. In the case of "The Brothers", he was drawn right into the flow of the story.

"The Brothers" covers the period from the late 1940s to the mid -1960s when John Foster Dulles was the powerful Secretary of State and Allen Dulles was the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. They fermented regime changes in Iran. Guatemala, Indonesia, the Belgian Congo and Iran. And, as many know by now, Cuba as well. The troubles they stirred up in Iran and Cuba persist to this day. The book jacket also states that the Dulles' "led the United States into the Vietnam War..." That statement is unproven within these pages. The Vietnam conflict was vastly too complicated to be reduced to one sentence.

"The Brothers" is sharply written and well documented. There are 55 pages of end notes in a 328 pages of text. Author Kinzer ostensibly turns on the brothers for all their regime changing activities. He then reverses course and arrives at a most sensible elucidation: The brothers Dulles were a product of their times and "exemplified the nation that produced them". A different kind of leader would require a different United States". This reviewer can live with that sentiment.

There was a deadly serious Cold War in session during this period the brothers Dulles were at the core. Author Kinzer deserves credit for capturing the essence of that era as well as he does.

Amazon Customer on August 10, 2015

Informative and entertaining while also scary. Author oversimplifies, omits much about diplomacy besides the Cold War.

This is my third Kinzer book (The Crescent and the Star and Reset), he is a master at spinning off new books from research collected while writing other books. This work peels back the cover on U.S. covert and overt foreign policy in the 1950s and what happens when two brothers have too much power within an Administration that has the public's trust and far too little of its scrutiny. It is a joint biography of John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles who were Secretary of State (1953-1958) and CIA Director (1953-1961), respectively.

Some reviewers have pointed out that Kinzer tends to oversimplify his message. For example, Eisenhower and Dulles' overthrow of Mohammed Mosadegh, for example, may have had something to do with our needing Britain's support in SE Asia more than simply a crusade to eliminate anyone who was not clearly "for us" or "against the Communists." This book covers some of the territory of Trento's Prelude to Terror, Perkin's controversial Confessions of an Economic Hitman and the similar compilation A Game as Old as Empire. You may not believe what you read here as the facts certainly seem more like fiction. Did the U.S. really (clumsily) secretly spend blood and treasure to try and subvert governments on every continent? How many assassinations and overthrows did Eisenhower surreptitiously give the go-ahead on? Eisenhower essentially comes across as a monster from our 2015 vantage point. But is he any different than a President Obama who is given intelligence and orders drone strikes to assassinate enemies of U.S. foreign policy? You be the judge. This book speaks volumes about what is learned by declassification of documents over time. I will say that I read a great biography on George Kennan last year and there appears to be little overlap; Kennan's foreign policy may have been too dovish for the Dulles, but he had helped create the precursor to the CIA, the Office of Policy Creation, on which both Dulles brothers worked--this connection gets no attention from Kinzer. Much of the diplomatic effort during the Cold War-- which did exist-- at this time are left unmentioned by Kinzer, which is problematic.

The Dulles family grew up with an international mindset. One grandfather (John W. Foster) was an Ambassador (before that title was formalized) to several countries, including Russia, before becoming Secretary of State.The other was a missionary to India. They had other family connections working in diplomacy and such a career seemed just fine to them. Their father was a conservative Presbyterian minister who had an awkward relationship with his wayward children. Kinzer writes that the boys (and their younger sister) essentially saw America as the City on a Hill that was bringing light to the nations through democracy and capitalism.

Studying at Princeton hitched them to the rising star of Woodrow Wilson, who they adored.
Sister Eleanor deserves her own biography, she was a pioneer as a PhD female economist who did relief work in WWI, attended Bretton Woods after WWII, and made her own career in diplomatic service.
John Foster (Foster henceforth) attended the Paris peace conference with Wilson and was disappointed with the outcome, both he and Eleanor arguing along with J.M. Keynes that the German reparations were simply setting the stage for the next European war. At the time, Foster was working in international law for U.S. business interests, and even supposedly ghostwrote a rebuttle to Keynes' book to serve his own interests. Foster's law firm designed the legal arrangements by which U.S. firms could profit off the German reparations, which allowed him to be wealthy even during the Great Depression. He was the more religious of the bunch and was mostly faithful to his wife.

Meanwhile, Allen Dulles was serving in the newly-formed Foreign Service while sleeping with as many women as would have him. In a "What would have been?" moment of history Allen reportedly brushed off meeting Vladimir Lenin, after Lenin supposedly called him just before Lenin went to St. Petersburg for the Russian Revolution, in order to engage in a soiree with a couple of blonde Swiss females. His own sister recounts that he had "at least a hundred" affairs, and his wife approved of some and disapproved of others. A sign of the times, they remain married although she probably miserably. This continued on all through his CIA years and makes one wonder why recent CIA chief David Petraeus had to resign for anything.

Kinzer interestingly calls Wilson out for being a hypocrite, citing his inconsistent application of the doctrine of self-determination. While that doctrine stirred nationalist sentiment in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, Wilson obviously didn't apply it to the Philippines, Hawaii, or other U.S.-occupied territories. Nonetheless, the three sibling Wilson devotees attend the Paris peace talks together. Foster returns to his law firm where he's made a full partner while Allen remains in the Foreign Service until joining the firm himself in 1926.

The author ignores much of Foster's religious interest and involvement in these years. Foster changed his mind several times in life, whether in his religious devotions or from isolationist to interventionist. Interestingly, Foster was a German sympathizer and refused to believe any tales being produced about the Nazis as his firm had many German business interests. Allen disagreed strongly after touring Germany himself, and after Germany began defaulting on its debts the firm severed ties.

Allen Dulles built up his network through the law firm, the Council on Foreign Relations, and his old Foreign Service contacts and made a fortune molding business deals for European connections, including those in Nazi Germany. After the U.S. enters the war, Dulles is recruited by "Wild Bill" for the new OSS, becoming the first OSS officer behind enemy lines, sneaking into Switzerland to do so. He meets with all sorts of characters while feeding intelligence to the U.S., much of which was false, but enough was helpful enough to expand his reputation. Of course, he has many affairs, including a long one with a woman his wife approved of and shared with him. Interestingly, when the Valkyrie operation was launched by German traitors to kill Hitler and restore order, Dulles was the main contact with the U.S. relaying news back to Washington. The participants wanted to sue for peace, but FDR officially rejected the olive branch and Dulles was not allowed to negotiate on any such olive branch. After the War, Truman abolishes the OSS.

Foster helps draft the U.N. Charter and becomes an internationalist, seeing world peace as a Christian ideal. Foster apparently contributed to the "Six Pillars of Peace" outline by the Federal Council of Churches in 1942. He eventually reverses after the Iron Curtain falls, becoming a militant anti-Communist and seeing the USSR as truly and evil empire, the antithesis of everything American. Reinhold Niebuhr eventually pens critiques of Foster as he begins to promote a black-and-white vision of the world.

Both brothers backed the Dewey campaign in 1948, which left them disappointed. However, Dewey appoints Foster Dulles to fill a void in the Senate, which immediately elevates Foster into a higher realm, although he promptly loses the special election for the seat. Nonetheless, he is appointed to the State Department by Truman and impresses people in negotiating the final treaty with Japan in 1950. This makes him a good choice for Secretary of State when Eisenhower is elected in 1952, and Foster promptly works on a policy of "rollback" to replace the "containment" policy of Truman and Kennan.

However, Kinzer also writes that NSC-68, a top secret foreign policy strategy signed by Truman in 1950, was monumental in militarizing the response to the USSR and that the Dulles operated under an NSC-68 mindset. "A chilling decree" according to Kinzer, NSC-68 called for a tripling of defense spending in order to prevent Soviet influence from overtaking the West. Allen Dulles was appointed the first civilian director of the CIA and the die was cast.

The 1950s roll like the Wild West, with Eisenhower signing off on expensive operations, assassinations, and propaganda campaigns at home and abroad. Supposedly, more coups were attempted under Eisenhower than in any other administration, and recently declassified documents show that Dulles' CIA actively engaged in Eisenhower-warranted assassination plots in the Congo and elsewhere. Perhaps Richard Bissell, Eisenhower's enforcer is more to blame than Kinzer allows. The CIA-backed 1954 coup in Guatemala was actually initiated by Truman years earlier, but demonstrated Eisenhower's resolve. "Once you commit the flag, you've committed the country." Dulles' secret armies in Guatemala and the Philippines needed U.S. airpower for support. If the media went with a story exposing operations, or a pilot was shot down, it didn't matter-- the mission must succeed once the U.S. was committed. The CIA even used religious-based propaganda in Guatemala to foment political change, having priests on the CIA payroll publish editorials denouncing Communism.

Guatemala also showed the intersection of U.S. business interests and foreign policy. The coup was encouraged by the United Fruit Company, which had been a client of the Dulles' NY law firm and Allen Dulles had served on its Board of Directors; others in the Eisenhower Administration had ties. While Guatemala's president was democratically elected, he was a leftist, and anyone showing Leftist sympathies was to be eliminated, particularly in the Western hemisphere. The 1953 coup of democratically elected Mohammed Mosaddegh in Iran was similar in the sense that it was made more urgent by Mosaddegh's nationalization of British oil interests after the Brits refused to let Mosaddegh audit their books or negotiate a better deal. Kinzer writes, however, that Foster in particular was unable to see anyone as "neutral." Mosaddegh believed in democracy and capitalism and could have been an ally, but Mosaddegh and others like Egypt's Nasser were nationalists who favored neither the US nor the USSR, but courted deals from both. Kinzer writes that Foster saw a danger in a country like Iran becoming prosperous and inspiring others toward neutrality that might result in eventual creep toward the USSR, hence he and others like him had to be eliminated. How much the coup was driven to help the UK is unknown. The blowback from intervention in South America and Iran has since come back to haunt the US in the form of skepticism and greater Leftist angst against the US and the 1979 overthrow of the Shah.

Ho Chi Minh had initially offered the US an olive branch after WWII and was not opposed to working with US interests, but the more he was rebuffed the more he turned to harder Communism. John Foster Dulles apparently hated the French for abandoning Vietnam, and never forgave them. While Eisenhower did not want to replace the French in Vietnam, he eventually warmed to the idea as Foster promoted the "domino theory" that if one nation fell victim to Communism then others would soon follow and the eventual war would widen. Better to install brutal dictators as in Iran and South Vietnam than let a country fall. Another enemy was Sukarno in Indonesia who was trying to thread the needle between democracy, socialism, nationalism, and Islam. This type of neutrality was against the Dulles' worldview, and in his memoir, Sukarno lamented "America, why couldn't you be my friend?" after the CIA spent a lot of manpower trying to topple his regime in 1958. There was also the training of Tibetan rebels in Colorado in 1957 and the ongoing plot to assassinate Congo's Lumumba, given with Ike's consent.

Allen Dulles' reign at CIA reads like the nightmare everyone worried about "big government" warns you about. Experiments interrogating prisoners with LSD, the purchase to the movie rights of books like The Quiet American in order to sanitize them, planting stories in major newspapers, planting false documents in Joseph McCarthy's office to discredit him, along with the private armies and escapades. Dulles comes under official criticism by Doolittle, who wrote that he was a bad administrator, bad for morale, and had no accountability-- all of which was dismissed by Eisenhower who saw Allen as the indispensible man.

Eventually both John Foster Dulles and Eisenhower become old and unhealthy, Eisenhower suffering a heart attack in 1955 and Foster dying of cancer in 1959. Allen Dulles' libido slows slightly as age takes its toll and he becomes more detached from operations at the CIA, creating a more dangerous situation. When Castro seizes power in Cuba, the Eisenhower Administration made it official policy to depose him. While Dulles was officially in charge at the CIA, he was far detached from the details of the anti-Castro operations which the media had exposed and continued at great risk of failure.

Newly-elected JFK inherits the Bay of Pigs invasion plans and faces a political dilemma: Back off and be accused of sparing Castro since the government was invested in success, or go forward and risk a disaster. Unlike Eisenhower, Kennedy would not consent to air support or other official military measures to help the CIA's army once it landed, dooming the operation. Those closest to the operation begged Dulles and others to cancel the operation to no avail. Dulles was enjoying a speaking engagement elsewhere in the region, giving the appearance of attachment to the operation while being completely oblivious to its failure. The White House forced him to resign in 1961.

Dulles' last act was on the Warren Commission investigating JFK's assassination. This was problematic because Dulles' goal was to keep CIA assassination operations in Cuba a secret. Kinzer writes of Lyndon Johnson's desire to make Oswald a lone gunman with no political attachments, which brings us to a whole other story.

Kinzer concludes the book with armchair psychology, writing that the Dulles brothers succummed to cognitive biases, including confirmation bias. They saw everything in the world as they wanted to, and not as it was. They were driven by a missionary Calvinism and the ideal of American Exceptionalism that clouded their lenses. They also seemed to consider themselves infallible in their endeavors. Ultimately, "they are us," writes Kinzer, which is why it is important to learn from them. The parallels with recent American military and para-military endeavors is also clear, but Kinzer lets the reader make those comparisons.

I learned a great deal from the history of this book, studying the Dulles is an integral part in studying the execution of American foreign policy in the Cold War. Some of the omissions, simplifications, and psychoanalysis mar the book somewhat. 3.5 stars out of 5.

Doug Nort, on April 23, 2015

Too Much Passion;Too Few Facts

This book is marred by Kinzer's repeated overstatements and failures to marshal facts to support his theses about the Dulles brothers.

His failure to persuade me begins early: In the introduction Kinzler wrote of the naming of Washington's Dulles airport: "The new president, John F. Kennedy, did not want to name an ultra-modern piece of America's future after a crusty cold-war militant." He provides no documentation that Kennedy himself thought that. Given that JFK was proud of his own credentials as a cold warrior, it is unlikely that was his objection. It is much more likely his objection (or that of the staffer speaking for him in the matter) was that Foster Dulles was an iconic figure of the Eisenhower administration-which Kennedy and his New Frontiersmen viewed as having made a hash of things-or that he was a stalwart of the Republican Party, or that Dulles disapproved of a Catholic becoming president. Kinzler apparently thinks his sweeping statement is self-evident but it isn't to me.

A few pages later Kinzler gives us another hint that the pages to come will contain sweeping, unsupported generalizations. He wrote "The story of the Dulles brothers is the story of America." My goodness, didn't they share their times with FDR and Ralph Bunche and Dwight Eisenhower and Tom Watson and A. Phillip Randolph and George Marshall and a host of others who, although coming from backgrounds quite different from the brothers Dulles, are just as much the American story? The accomplishments and peccadillos of two brothers with an upper-class pedigree is hardly "the story of America."

Chapter eleven contains several such unsupported or historically blinkered generalizations. At one point (sorry-I'm a Kindle reader, no page numbers), after noting "the depth of fear that gripped many Americans during the 1950s." Kinzler asserts that "Foster and Allen were the chief promoters of that fear." Crowning the brothers as chief fear-mongers ignores some powerful other voices: Khrushchev, Joe McCarthy, General Curtis Lemay, Nixon, Churchill, Drew Pearson, Robert Welch and his John Birch Society-the list could continue.

At another point Kinzler says, "They [the brothers] never imagined that their intervention[s] . . . would have such devastating long-term effects." He cites Vietnam, Iran falling into violently anti-American leadership, and the Congo descending "into decades of horrific conflict." Regarding Vietnam, I think most historians would say that JFK, LBJ, and McNamara bear much, much more responsibility than do the Dulles brothers. As for their Iran and Congo sins, I believe those developments were much more due to unpredictable consequences than to the Dulles' blindness. Yogi is right: "Predictions are hard, especially about the future."

And on the same page (excuse me "location") Kinzler is quite certain that "Their lack of foresight led them to pursue reckless adventures that, over the course of decades, palpably weakened American security." The reader who already believes that will nod and read on while the reader who expects this ringing declaration to be followed by specifics that provide powerful support will read it and say, like the customer in the fast food ad, "where's the beef?"

OK, enough already. Kinzler's writing obviously pushed my buttons and I wouldn't have finished the book but for it being a selection of my book club. I am fine with criticism of people and policies when well-documented-for example Michael Oren's Power, Faith and Fantasy-but I lose patience with book-length op-ed pieces such as The Brothers.

Dale P. Henkenon, April 6, 2015

Cuba Si! Yankee No!

If a work based on Cold War history could construct a case against American (U.S.) exceptionalism, The Brothers by Stephen Kinzler would be a strong candidate. It illustrates the dangers of a coupling of foreign policy and covert operations involving what we now know as regime change.

It is a story of the Dulles brothers and coups arranged by the executive branch triad composed of the President (Ike) and the dynamic duo of the Dulles brothers as Secretary of State and Director of the CIA (without congressional oversight) in Guatemala, Iran, Cuba, Indonesia, the Congo and Vietnam.

It is a story that deserved to be told and it is told well. It is somewhat slow going at the start and one-dimensional but is a captivating read regardless. It is not a rigorous biography or history of the era and the events it depicts. It is driven by the thesis that our actions in the developing world even though driven by anti-communism or American idealism or Christian fundamentalist fervor (all were involved) can have baleful results.

The results can be so bad that Americans are now resented and even hated and have been for generations in large parts of the world. Highly recommended.

R. Spell VINE VOICE on March 28, 2015

Who We Are as Americans in the 50s

Engaging historical perspective that while dragging and repetitive at times, has so much information that frames our world now, and generally NOT in a positive way, that it should be required reading. Yes, I was aware of the name as a 61 yr old. But I was not aware of their roles. Not aware of brothers. Not aware of Allen's involvement in the CIA. Nor aware of their careers at the massive law firm of Cromwell and Sullivan.

But reading this was stunning and made me angry. George Dulles was more responsible for the Cold War than anyone. And documents after the war shows the Soviets were not near as devious as we give them credit for. But our fear painted a view of a hidden enemy bent on our destruction. We missed opportunities with Khrushchev. More importantly and totally unaware to me, these guys we responsible for government overthrows and were actively involved in the 1950s with alienating Vietnam leading eventually to a horrible loss of civilian lives and more importantly to me, American soldiers who were led in to the wrong war at the wrong time.

But let us not forget the documented CIA overthrows of Congo, Guatemala,Indonesia and Iran. Is this America? Well, in the post WWII world, we lost our values and stooped to such tactics.

There are stories here America doesn't study and they should. How the interface of commerce, politics and war can lead to disastrous results that haunt us today.

Read this book to learn. Not all of it will make you proud. Yes, I learned. And yes, I'm angry and ashamed.

Schnitzon February 25, 2015

Allen Dulles May have Inadvertently Saved the US from a Nuclear Holocaust

It is ironic that the Bay of Pigs debacle commissioned by Allen Dulles may have inadvertently prevented the incineration of millions of Americans in a nuclear holocaust. As the author points out when John F. Kennedy assumed the presidency he was told by his predecessor Dwight Eisenhower that the invasion of Cuba by Cuban refugees with support from the US should move forward. As a young, new President of the US, Kennedy did not want to appear weak so when Dulles presented him with the plan seeking his approval Kennedy found himself in a box.

On the one hand Kennedy had doubts regarding the chances for success. On the other hand he wanted to appear strong to the people of the US and the world. This was the first true test of his presidency and legacy. After the abject failure of the operation Kennedy to his credit took full responsibility in his address to the American people but he would never again trust the CIA or the military.

Fast forward tot he Cuban missile crisis. If Kennedy had not experienced the Bay of Pigs failure he probably would have placed more trust in the military and CIA who were vehemently urging him to bomb Cuba at various stages of the crisis. If he had taken the military's advice it would have likely resulted in escalation and possibly nuclear war with Russia. As it turned out Kennedy rejected the advice and negotiated a settlement which saved face for both sides. Kennedy's wisdom born of a past failure saved the day.


Compelling and informative about an era which had a darker ...

OLD1mIKEon February 17, 2015

The Dulles Brothers. They changed History.

Five Stars. Great book. Readable. Well researched, Informative. Highly recommended for someone interested in mid 20th century history or understanding the root cause of the anti-american animosity in certain parts of the world.

The Dulles brothers played pivotal roles in an incredible number of historic events that shaped the 20th century. They exemplified american attitudes and beliefs of their day and were placed in positions to act on these beliefs. The book not only presents their part in history, but also helps us understand the reasoning behind their actions.

I should leave the book review end with the above paragraphs, but I was originally unaware of how many key historical events of the 20th century the brothers participated in and influenced. I find it impossible not to casually speculate on their effect on history. John Foster helped write the Reparation portion of the WWI Treaty of Versailles. Some historians believe German anger over the unfairness of the reparations to be one element causing WWII. John Foster helped write the 1924 Dawes Plan that opened the door to American investment in Germany. Even in 1924 John Foster was obsessed with fighting communism. He saw a strong Germany as an effective stop gap against communistic expansion. Foster used his affiliation with Sullivan & Cromwell and his friendship with Hjalmar Schacht, Hitlers Minister of Economics, to increase American investment in Germany and its industry. Without international investment, Germany probably could not have supported it's military aspirations. Allen and the CIA was instrumental in the 1953 Iranian Coup that overthrew the democratically elected Iranian Government to install the Shaw of Iran. This action and the heavy handed governing style of the Shaw certainly led to some of the anti American resentment in the middle east today and the Iranian (Islamic) Rebellion in 1979. The Iranian Rebellion probably helped elect Ronald Reagan in 1980. In regard to Vietnam. Foster, acting as Eisenhower's Secretary of State, refused to sign the 1954 Geneva Accord. Over considerable objections, John Foster and Allen chose and installed Ngo Dinh Diem as the 1st president of the newly created Republic of South Vietnam. Diem had been a minor official in Vietnam and was Interior Minister for three months in 1933. He had not held a job since. Once in power, Allen's CIA helped keep him there. John Foster continued to support the escalation of our involvement in Vietnam until his death in 1959. Allen took a hands off approach to the Bay of Pigs operation (17 April 1961), but as the Director of the CIA, it was his responsibility. JFK fired him in November 1961. There are JFK Assassination Conspiracy Theory's that include CIA involvement. It is interesting that Lyndon Johnson personally chose Allen to be a member of the Warren Commission. Add U2 Spy Planes, Congo revolts, overthrow of South American leaders, Cuba and a host more. The policies and action of these two men changed global history and probably still effect the beliefs of many today.

Loves the View VINE VOICE on December 2, 2014

Attitude, Access, Ambition and US Foreign Policy

Stephen Kinzer shows how instrumental these brothers were in the design of US foreign policy in the post war years. He shows how their attitudes and personalities were formed, developed, and grew to influence the course of history.

The brothers' learned statecraft at their grandfather's side. John W. Foster, US ambassador to three countries, later served as President Harrison's trouble shooter and Secretary of State. He helped in the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani in Hawaii and later used his State Department connections to engineer government policy to benefit his corporate clients. Kinzer shows how the brothers benefited from their grandfather's access and came to dual pinnacles of power in shaping US foreign policy: one heading the CIA, the other the Department of State.

The 1950's operations weren't as hidden as I expected. Allen Dulles, in the Saturday Evening Post, beamed with pride for removing Mohammad Mossadegh in Iran and Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala. He even has copies made of Diego Rivera's critical mural where he is depicted taking money while his brother shakes hands with a local puppet and Eisenhower is pictured on a bomb. Many willingly joined in dirty tricks, for instance Cardinal Spellman wrote a pastoral letter to Guatemalan Catholics calling their President a dangerous communist.

I was surprised that President Eisenhower, whose administration is commonly thought to be one of tranquility, approved toppling governments and assassinating leaders. In some ways, he was the front man, for instance urging Congress to approve funds for "maintenance of national independence" but really for fomenting a coup in Syria and installing a king in Saudi Arabia to get US friendly governments to oppose Gamal Nasser (p. 225).

With today's internet and 24 hour news cycle, can large covert operations such as those against the President Sukarno (the first president of Indonesia who naively looked to the US for help in developing his nation's fledgling democracy) go under the radar? I presume the CIA budget can still hide items such as the $6 million a year paid to the Nazi General Reinhard Gehlen (who should have been tried at Nuremberg (p. 185)).

By preventing compromise when compromise was possible, the brothers and President Eisenhower, prolonged the Cold War into the Khruschev era and sowed the seeds of the Vietnam War. The lack of reflection or personal responsibility is clear in the quote on p. 283 when years later Allen Dulles coolly tells Eric Sevareid regarding the torture and murder of Patrice Lumumba, that " we may have overrated the danger.." How would the Congo be today if the US had left its fledgling democracy alone, and not have installed Mobutu in a leadership position?

The last coup attempt in the book is the Bay of Pigs. It was an Eisenhower approved intervention and there seemed that to be no turning back for Kennedy. Its fiasco signaled the end of Allen Dulles, but not the Cold War since its relic, Vietnam as a domino, was an image deeply ingrained in policy DNA.

In a side story, the brothers show little consideration to their sister, who had to push to have a career. She marginally benefits from the family name. They do not see that they have been born on third base and she on first. In fact, when it is convenient for them, they try to fire her, yet still go to her house for holiday dinners.

Kinzer concludes with recent work in psychology and personality profiling (" blind ourself to contrary positions prepared to pay a high price to preserve our most cherished ideas declarations of high confidence mainly tell you an individual has constructed a coherent story in his mind beliefs become how you prove your identity.." p. 322) that not only characterize the brothers, but a lot of the thinking in the Cold War.

These paradigms are with us today. Too many politicians and their appointees still their job as responding to lobbyists, not just for big business, but for foreign countries with interests contrary to those of the US. Similarly there are those who force their economic ideology on small and helpless countries. The book tells a sobering and troubling story. It is greatly at odds with what is taught in high schools. This book has been out for a year now, and it seems the story told is just more noise in political system. Unfortunately it will make a large event for insiders in Washington to reflect on what we now call "muscular" foreign policy and its results.

Regnal the Caretakeron November 13, 2014

Nasty lawyers and the rise of CIA

These two globo-corporate lawyers dictated USA foreign policy during governance of four presidents: Roosevelt, Truman (he signed CIA into the law in 1947), Eisenhower and Kennedy. They were called 'Cold Warriors' and built Cold War model which rested on the premise that any growing social influence in Third World countries must be resisted because socialist gains are always irreversible. Any nation that tried to stay 'neutral' had to face CIA interventions that did not bring anything positive for populations (notably we learn in details about Guatemala, Iran, Congo, Indonesia, Vietnam and Cuba). Eisenhower times were the worst, when covert capability of CIA grew massively.

Fascinating work by Stephen Kinzer can be easily extrapolated to help explain XXI century behavior of Washington. Not much has changed.

Craig N. Warrenon November 12, 2014

Making the World Safe for Democracy (and American Business).

I've learned more about the development of American foreign policy and international relations in the twentieth (and twenty-first) century, especially since WWII, in reading the story of these two scions of an American aristocratic family, who were fully steeped in Calvinistic Protestantism (and it's capitalist ethic) and unquestioningly convinced of American Exceptionalism and it's Manifest Destiny to lead the world and make it safe for democracy and American Business, than I have anywhere else.

This is more than a biography (or double biography) of two very influential actors in American history, politics and international relations. It is an exposition of the quintessential, archetypical American (WASP) mindset, worldview or psychology that has motivated our collective international behavior over the past six or seven decades.

Digital Rightson June 14, 2014


A "How to Not Run Foreign Policy" Primer

Stephen Kinzer's new book offers a very focused and surgical condemnation of the Dulles brothers foreign policy collaboration in the 1950's that has resulted in a horrid and nightmarish chain of events ever since.

Allen Dulles at CIA, first as a lead operative for covert missions and then as it's second Director and John Foster Dulles as Secretary of State lead foreign policy during the Eisenhower Presidency. The book goes through six operations to overthrow or destabilize governments through that time; Iran, Guatemala, Indonesia, Cuba, Vietnam and the formerly Belgian Congo.

In each case Kinzer shows the limited lens of cold war anti communism that resulted in the Dulles' tunnel vision where grouping all non-Pro American groups as enemies and communists. He equally addresses their lack of personal curiosity and intellect and preference for slogans and absolutism over analysis or objective debate. All State employees that don't hew the line are regularly fired or transferred to obscure jobs or roles and in place are pro-CIA hardliners.

It is painful reading. The objective was to both create the world they wanted while limiting the use of US military personnel to achieve those ends. The short cuts and limited world vision have exacted a terrible price. Sadly there is not a place in the world where their activities resulted in any sustainable success and in fact have lead to perhaps millions of deaths and suspicions and misunderstandings for the next 50 to 60 years.

There is much here that further condemns Eisenhower. In many cases he fully supported and endorsed their plans while pretending not to, fully employing the most cynical of strategies; "plausible deniability".

Having read the 2012 Eisenhower biography by Jean Edward Smith I was surprised here by the wealth of information that ties Eisenhower more directly to clandestine activities and their purposes. Particularly disappointing is his continues build up for the Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba after Kennedy's election but before he took office and will little effort to brief the incoming president. Similarly our Vietnam involvement in the 1950's was so deep already as to make a Kennedy pullout far more difficult.

There is much here about these issues and the corrupt relationships between the Dulles's prior careers at Sullivan and Cromwell and their support of private interests while working at State and the CIA.

It's grim but the writing is good and the story is well worth knowing.

C. Ellen Connally, May 22, 2014

An amazing tale of intrigue and deception

As we fly in or out of Dulles International Airport, no one gives much thought to the namesake, John Foster Dulles. Sure, he was Secretary of State and some Americans have a vague knowledge of his brother Allan Dulles, director of the CIA and long time super spy and intelligence person. Reading Stephen Kinzer's book, THE BROTHERS reveals the truth about the Dulles brothers and how they changed American and World History.

At the heart of the story is the unfortunate belief by the brothers that if a country was not totally in agreement with American philosophy they were against us. Any nationalist leaders of a former colonial nation that believed in land reform or neutrality on the international scene had to be evil and must be destroyed. If they were not with us, they had to be communist. This American foreign policy changed the history of the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Africa and Central America.

There is much blame put on President Johnson for the War in Viet Nam. But reading THE BROTHERS shows that the roots of the Viet Nam Conflict go back many years. Likewise, the situation in the Middle East. We have to go back and look at the foreign policy that created the tensions that now exist and the men that shaped that foreign policy.

Its interesting to note that Kinzer asserts that on the death of Chief Justice Fred Vinson in 1953, Eisenhower offered the position of Chief Justice to John Foster Dulles. According to Kinzer, Dulles turned it down because he wanted to stay at the State Department. The story has always been that Ike had promised Earl Warren the first seat on the Supreme Court in exchange for his support in the 1952 election - Warren had been out maneuvered by Richard Nixon to get the bid for the vice presidency. How different legal history would have been had John Foster Dulles become Chief Justice!

Kinzer is a masterful story teller. This book is extremely readable and a must read for understanding the history of American foreign policy and how individual people can change.

John Berryon March 13, 2014

What Our History Lessons Didn't Tell Us!

It has been a long time since an author has captured my interest so quickly and made me question everything I have been taught or have learned about our country. Churchill once said Democracy is the worst kind of government except all others. This comment keeps reverberating around in my mind as I read this book. I am one of those people that have flown into Dulles airport countless times, yet never gave a moments thought as to why, what or even if there was a who to the airports name. I grew up during the cold war and I vividly remember the fear of the Big Russian Bear overtaking us with their form of government and the possibility of nuclear war. It would have never crossed my mind that my very own government aided and abetted in promoting this fear in order for us to gain public moral outrage and support for our endeavors. I kept trying to tell myself this was different times, yet the author pointed out countless times where there were those in the known that were summarily dismissed for having counter opinions.Or leaders from our allies that would not support the Dulles brothers opinions and missions that so disagreed with who we told the world we were. Abraham Lincoln once said "Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power". I can think of no better example of failure in handling power than the two Dulles brothers. Not only was I continuously shocked by their gross misuse of power, but I found myself being angry at them as well because of the fear I remember my mother facing as a widower with three children to raise. She needed not to have been this afraid with all the other issues she had to deal with but because of President Eisenhower and the Dulles brothers she had to face this fear as well. Whether or not Mr. Kinzer took liberties with the political agenda's of the leaders we either overthrew or attempted to overthrown does not matter to me at all. The fact that we promoted our country as a free democracy yet we were willing to dance with any leader in the world as long as they did exactly what we wanted them to do is so counter to the way I was raised to believe still leaves me reeling.

Currently in the news President Putin has said in no uncertain terms that the U.S. is responsible for the revolution taking place in the Ukraine. In the past I would have said he is just another Russian bully trying to get his way. After reading The Brothers I now wonder what, if anything, my country had to do with promoting this revolution. I heard our Ukraine Ambassador say almost word for word what I read in this book our ambassador's under the power of The Brother's said back during the cold war. The author tells us that the U.S. with its secret prisons and torture's may have actually invented terrorism.

This author has opened my eyes to a whole new way of thinking and I am so disappointed in opportunities missed and I am so disappointed with our current leaders for having learned apparently nothing from history.

If you love reading history then please buy this book and ask your family to read it as well. Do I believe everything I read, no not usually, but in this case there are just too many facts that distort my view of who we are to dismiss.

James Gallen VINE VOICE on March 4, 2014

An Indepth Study Of American Covert Action

"The Brothers" tells the story of the brothers Dulles, John Foster and Allen, who drove American foreign policy through much of the 1950s. Grandsons of Secretary of State John Foster and nephews of Secretary of State Robert Lansing, the two grew up in an atmosphere mixing high diplomacy with the spirit of Christian Crusaders. Their path to power was linear. At the law firm of Sullivan and Cromwell they represented companies with interests around the world and came to see their clients' interests united with America's. As Foster moved into politics and government service he often brought Allen with him.

Although expected to be Secretary of State in a Dewey Administration, Foster came in with Dwight Eisenhower in 1953. With Allen as Director of Central Intelligence, they formed a team that searched the world for dragons to slay. Guided by a world view of us, American Christian capitalists, against them, Socialist Evil Doers, they identified their foes and went after them. Among their successes were Guatemalan President Αrbenz, Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh and Congolese leader Patrice Lumumba. TYhose who got away included Ho Chi Minh and Fidel Castro. This book is a study of American covert operations in Guatemala, Iran, Vietnam, Indonesia, the Congo and Cuba. Allen's Bay of Pigs operation is a case study of disaster.

Author Stephen Kinzer explores the unique situation in which the intelligence gathering agency is also an actor. Throughout he illustrates how the relationship of their leaders enabled two agencies that would normally question and check each other, to work in seamless harmony to carry out the covert operations that both saw as primary instruments of American power. Behind them was President Eisenhower who had used covert operations during World War II and who approved their actions. In the end the author posits that the policies were the President's and the brothers were more his servants than his masters.

Kinzer portrays the Brothers as men with rigid, narrow outlooks that saw enemies in independent nationalists and conspiracies in disorganized movements. He presents them as two sides of the coin, the molders and reflectors of public opinion. The book is not flattering. It depicts the Dulles brothers as men whose flawed expectations caused many problems for the U.S. and the world by destroying men who America need not have fought. Ultimately he concludes that they were representatives of the people they served and their successes, and failures, are our own. "The Brothers" forces the reader to confront a portion of America's past with its triumphs and shames. Although Kinzer gives his opinions, he provides the facts to permit the reader to form his own. Any serious student of history would do well to delve beneath the surface of our history and appreciate its deep currents and lasting effects.

Race to the Bottom Global Village or Global Pillage

The Race to the Bottom
excerpted from the book
Global Village or Global Pillage
Economic Reconstruction from the Bottom Up
by Jeremy Brecher and Tim Costello
South End Press, 1994

The New World Economy

This system of nation-based economies is rapidly evolving toward a global economy. Computer, communication and transportation technologies have lessened distance as a barrier, making possible the coordination of production and commerce on a global scale. Lowered tariffs have reduced national frontiers as barriers to commerce, facilitating transnational production and distribution. Corporations are globalizing not only to reduce production costs, but also to expand markets, evade taxes, acquire knowledge and resources, and protect themselves against currency fluctuations and other risks. As Robert B. Reich, now US. Secretary of Labor, wrote in 1991, "As almost every factor of production - money, technology, factories, and equipment-moves effortlessly across borders, the very idea of an American economy is becoming meaningless, as are the notions of an American corporation, American capital, American products, and American technology. A similar transformation is affecting every other nation."

Three hundred companies now own an estimated one-quarter of the productive assets of the world. Of the top 100 economies in the world, 47 are corporations each with more wealth than 130 countries. Their interests are global as The New York Times noted in 1989, "Many American companies are shedding the banner of national identity and proclaiming themselves to be global enterprises whose fortunes are no longer so dependent on the economy of the United States.''

***

Capital and financial markets have become global and the foreign exchange market processes approximately $1 trillion per day. Since 1983, global foreign direct investment has grown at an average of 29 percent a year, three times faster than the growth of export trade and four times the growth of world output. According to one expert on world monetary systems, "Some individual currency speculators have as much money as some small countries.''

***

Downward Leveling

In a competitive market, sales generally go to the competitor who offers the lowest price. As a result, prices tend toward the level of the lowest cost producer. When this tendency lowers the price of goods and services through the improved efficiency touted by the advocates of free-market forces, the effect may be benign. But when corporations and governments lower costs by reducing environmental protection, wages, salaries, health care, and education, the result can be malignant-a "downward leveling" of environmental, labor, and social conditions.

Farmers, workers, consumers, and citizens threatened by downward leveling have long organized themselves locally and nationally to resist malignant effects of competition. They have encouraged governments to adopt environmental, labor, and social policies that block downward leveling. But corporations can now outflank the controls governments and organized citizens once placed on them by relocating their facilities around the world.

***

In the Third World the trends are similar but more severe. Almost one-third of the population of the developing countries, 1.3 billion people, live in absolute poverty-too poor to provide the minimum diet required for full human functioning. It is often argued that foreign investment will raise wages in poor countries. But a review of U.S. corporate behavior abroad by the Boston Globe found that "rather than raising standards of living, American firms are more likely to be paying no better than local minimum wages." A study sponsored by the International Labor Organization found that in Indonesia-now a favorite spot for companies like Nike and Reebok - 88 percent of women earning the Indonesian minimum wage were malnourished.

What about the "success stories" of the New World Economy-the "Newly Industrialized Countries" [NlCs], such as the East Asian "Tigers"? They have seen great economic growth, largely based on the exploitation of labor and the unsustainable destruction of the environment. The benefits have often, though not always, been restricted to a small elite. But even these countries are far from immune to the race to the bottom. T.C. Lee, a banker at Citibank in Taipei, noted that in Taiwan, "there are lots of labor-intensive industries garments, shoes, toys. All of them started to look outside to invest. They started to relocate initially to Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and in the last two years, China, to enjoy cheap labor, cheap land, cheap living costs." Michael M.C. Lin, president of a conglomerate corporation in Taiwan, built a furniture factory in China. "Labor costs were the most important thing for us," he said.

The race to the bottom is contributing to environmental destruction worldwide. Global corporations' oil refineries, steel mills, chemical plants, and other factories, now located all over the world, are the main source of greenhouse gases, ozone-depleting chemicals, and toxic pollutants. Their packaging is a major source of solid waste. Overfishing of the world's waters, overcutting of forests, and the destructive use of land result both from the search for higher corporate profits and the increase in poverty, which leads to desperate overharvesting of natural resources.

The 7,000 Philippine islands, for example, were "lavishly endowed with rainforests, fish, fertile low-lands, and extensive mineral deposits" as recently as World War II. Today, "there are few places you can go in the Philippines without meeting some sort of ecological disaster." In one part of Mindanao, "the forests were thick, and the people few. Now, thanks to the greed of the big commercial logging companies and the need of the small agriculturalists (who move into the forests only after the loggers have built roads and chopped down the biggest trees), the mountains are almost bare." The proportion of the Philippines that is forested has decreased from 35 percent to 20 percent-less than half the amount needed to maintain a stable ecosystem-just since 1969.

***

Casual evidence from virtually every country confirms the deterioration of living standards and the widening inequality of the last decade.'' Africa's GNP fell by an average of 2.2 percent per year in the 1980s.54 In African countries with IMF-World Bank programs, spending on health decreased by 50 percent and on education by 25 percent during the 1980s. A United Nations advisory group reported that throughout Africa, "health systems are collapsing for lack of medicines, schools have no books, and universities suffer from a debilitating lack of library and laboratory facilities."

In rich and poor countries alike, economic insecurity, disruption, and poverty have undermined human relationships, traditional lifeways, and social values. A California lawyer recently wrote,

" I am a criminal defense lawyer, not an economist, but I wish to reinject into the discussion what strikes me as self-evident The lack of decent-paying work for our unskilled and semi-skilled workforce is a major cause of United States crime and social decay. The bulk of my clientele falls into the chronically unemployed and the newly laid off or chronically under-employed. The gainfully employed mostly do not commit crimes. The remaining, and growing, portion, who are not securely employed or decently paid need solid factory jobs to work their way out of poverty, and those jobs don't exist anymore. Why? Because they've been moved...Now we cannot employ all our people at a living wage, and as a result, our nation is suffering a catastrophic decline in living standards with an unraveling of our social fabric. "

***

The loss of democratic control is even greater in Third World debtor countries that have been subjected to structural adjustment programs. A recent series in The New York Times describes the World Bank and IMF as "the overlords of Africa." "For more than a decade the economies of Africa have been caught in a relentless downward spiral" As a result, African countries are finding themselves "more than ever under the thumb of outside powers." The IMF and the World Bank are "the purveyors of the new orthodoxy. They come in to bail out a country that is bankrupt. They do so by drawing up a 'structural adjustment program,' a tight package of economic prescriptions designed to bring about free market enterprise and minimum governmental interference." The Times concludes that through these programs, "the IMF and the bank now effectively oversee and supervise the economies of some 30 countries in sub-Saharan Africa."

***

Uncontrolled Global Corporations

Global corporations have become the world's most powerful economic actors, yet there are no international equivalents to the anti-trust, consumer protection, and other laws that provide a degree of corporate accountability at the national level. International capital mobility eliminates the long-term stake corporations once had in the well-being of their home nations. As Cyrill Siewert, a chief financial officer of Colgate-Palmolive, put it, '`The United States does not have an automatic call on our resources. There is no mind-set that puts this country first." The Bank of Commerce and Credit International scandals reveal just how much "freedom" global corporations have to engage in anti-social, not to say downright criminal, activity.

Unaccountable Global Institutions

The loss of national economic control has been accompanied by a growing concentration of power without accountability in international institutions like the IMF, the World Bank, and GATT. For poor countries, foreign control has been formalized in structural adjustment programs, but IMF decisions and GATT rules affect all countries. The decisions of these institutions also have an enormous impact on the global ecology-many environmentally destructive mega-projects in the Third World are financed by the World Bank' and GATT rules have been used to challenge such environmental measures as US. laws protecting dolphins. Yet these institutions represent a sphere of decision-making largely beyond the influence of citizens and citizen movements in poor and rich countries alike.

***

South End Press
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http://www.lbbs.org/sep/sep.htm

Fuck the US Imperialism -- Top German Politician Blasts Nuland & Carter

"..."Nuland says 'F*ck the EU'. We need need an EU foreign policy that stops warmongering US imperialism... F*ck US imperialism!" "
Zero Hedge

With intra-Europe relations hitting a new all-time low; and, having already been busted spying on Merkel, Obama got caught with his hand in Hollande's cookie jar this week, the following exultation from one of Germany's top politicians will hardly help Washington-Brussells relations. As Russia Insider notes, Oskar Lafontaine is a major force in German politics so it caught people's attention when he excoriated Ash Carter and Victoria Nuland on his Facebook page yesterday... "Nuland says 'F*ck the EU'. We need need an EU foreign policy that stops warmongering US imperialism... F*ck US imperialism!"

Here is the Facebook post (in German):

Lafontaine has been an outsized figure in German politics since the mid-70s. He was chairman of the SPD (one of Germany's two main parties) for four years, the SPD's candidate for chancellor in 1990, minister of finance for two years, and then chairman of the Left party in the 2000s. He is married to Sarah Wagenknecht, political heavyweight, who is currently co-chairman of Left party.

Lafontaine's outburst came a day after his wife, Sarah Wagenknecht, blasted Merkel's Russia policy in an interview on RT.

Here is the full translation of the post:

"The US 'Defense' secretary, i.e., war minister is in Berlin. He called on Europe to counter Russian 'aggression'. But in fact, it is US aggression which Europeans should be opposing.

"The Grandmaster of US diplomacy, George Kennan described the eastward expansion of NATO as the biggest US foreign policy mistake since WW2, because it will lead to a new cold war.

"The US diplomat Victoria Nuland said we have spent $5 billion to destabilize the Ukraine. They stoke the flames ever higher, and Europe pays for it with lower trade and lost jobs.

"Nuland says 'F*ck the EU'. We need need an EU foreign policy that stops warmongering US imperialism.

"F*ck US imperialism!"

* * *

When he comes out swinging this way, you know something is changing.

* * *

America - making friends and influencing people for 238 years...

[Feb 25, 2017] Stephen Kinzer: The Brothers - Rise of Exceptionalism and Aspirations of Empire

Video: watch-v=Mxw0B8wgoQU. the book The Brothers John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War Stephen Kinzer 9780805094978 Amazon.com Books
Notable quotes:
"... "Exceptionalism"- the view that the United States has a right to impose its will because it knows more, sees farther, and lives on a higher moral plane than other nations-was to them not a platitude, but the organizing principle of daily life and global politics... ..."
jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com

"Exceptionalism"- the view that the United States has a right to impose its will because it knows more, sees farther, and lives on a higher moral plane than other nations-was to them not a platitude, but the organizing principle of daily life and global politics...

With a glance, a nod, and a few words, without consulting anyone other than the President, the brothers could mobilize the full power of the United States anywhere in the world."

Stephen Kinzer, The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War

[May 02, 2015] radio C-SPAN

Mar 10, 2015 | annbeaker
Listened on the way to work the record of the meeting of the Senate Committee on Ukraine and anti-Russia. First, the names of speakers and respondents. Kornblum, Kantor, Nudelman and joined them boy Bobby Corker and others have wives from Ukraine, they said. Second, Putin is such a chronic incarnation of Satan that he looks larger them even the whole country. Now there are even concepts in his name, for example - "Putin's economy", what a beast it is unclear, but in the minds of American senators it's definitely evil. And just a bad person who alone lives in seven rooms and actively that fact that the members of the Congress did not like one bit and expressed strong desire to move him to something with less rooms. the third is that those gentlemen with the German-Yiddish surnames discussed the entire countries and territories as if they were just deserts, forests and steppes. As if there no population on this territories, who may have their own views on the subject, distinct from opinion by Committee members. Fourth, in some moments of the meeting, reminded the congregation in the local synagogue, and sometimes the PTA meeting which analyzed the behavior of poor students.

Main memes and beliefs expressed at the meeting:

  1. Russia backward and unable to progress and development of the country.
  2. In Russia there is no infrastructure.
  3. Russia lives from the sale of oil and only.
  4. Russia is financing all and with all the oil revenue.
  5. Russia is very aggressive.
  6. She attacked Ukraine. The existence of civil war not only not denied, this concept is just not even considered by Committee members. That completely changes everything, not war within one nation, when brother rose up against brother, and external invasion of a neighbor!
  7. Russia is aggressive towards the Baltic States and the Baltic States should be armed.
  8. Tomorrow Russia will attack Estonia.
  9. America has vital interests in Ukraine.
  10. To return the Crimea to Ukraine is America's vital interests.
  11. Putin is enemy No. 1.

There were suggestions from the field. For example, start to give Ukraine the money for one billion dollars a year for three consecutive years. This money, Ukraine will buy weapons from the USA and defend against Putin. We must begin to arm Estonia and to send battalions because there is a lot of Russians and Putin's aggression will be the first thing sent to Estonia. This was repeated several times and in different ways. I.e. looks like you have already decided to arrange provocations in Estonia. As this is done, he starts revealing to cut Russian compactly living in Narva or Estonia will satisfy the invasion by type Saakashvilis, only where? In Narva? He then tried to attack South Ossetia which was legally in Georgia, but not inhabited by the same nationality as the rest of the country and there was revolt. In Estonia looks like there is no revolt. But it is clear that the next for some expensive and stupid military supplies is Estonia. Funny, Yes?

[Apr 03, 2015] West is trying to buy allies of Russia

This is extremely strong move by the US diplomacy (EU vassals were just token players, extras in the play) which considerably weakens Russia political and economic position. It also shows that drop of oil prices was a well though out strategic move with several possible surprises in the sleeves.
Apr 03, 2015 | svpressa.ru

How the lift sanctions against Iran will affect the position of Russia in the world

Lengthy negotiations the six world powers (Russia, USA, UK, France, Germany, China) in Lausanne ended with agreement on the lifting of restrictions against Iran. Foreign Minister of this country Mohammad Zarif called the historical results of the negotiations. Similar opinion is shared by U.S. President Barack Obama, who compared the agreements with agreements between the United States and the Soviet Union during the reign of Reagan and Nixon. The world market after the statements of the leaders of the six responded to a decrease in oil prices. But the question arise: will the economy of Russia suffer as a result of this shrewd move, and will Russia be able to maintain a trusting relationship with its ally in the Middle East or it will change camps.

The EU and the US sanctions against Iran seriously limited the foreign trade of Tehran. They were introduced under the pretext of preventing Iran's development of its own nuclear weapons. Iran argued that solely interested in building on their own territory of the nuclear power plants and is not intended to have weapons of mass destruction. But the official representatives of the West did not believe statements by Iran leadership, fearing that obtaining a nuclear weapon by Iran will seriously alter the geopolitical balance in the middle East.

In recent years tensions between Iran and the West only grew. This played against attempts to isolate Moscow, which, after the reunification of the Crimea with Russia was forced to start organizing the "anti-Western coalition." to counter Western sanctions. But Tehran clearly did not enjoyed its permanent status of a "rogue state" assigned by the USA, and the new President of Iran Hassan Rouhani began to hint that he might compromise and accept the demands of the West.

Concluded at Lausanne agreements, Iran accepted an obligation for 15 years not to build new facilities for uranium enrichment and not to enrich uranium to the level of over to 3.67%, while also reducing the number of centrifuges from the current 19 thousand to six thousand. In response to the Tehran gets the opportunity to export the energy to the West.

The appearance on the world market of oil and gas from a new player at the current moment of low energy prices might trigger further collapse in the price of "black gold" which will jeopardize the economy of Russia. At the same time, the removal of restrictions on the development of the Iranian nuclear program will enhance the ability of Russian companies to participate in construction of nuclear power plants. It also indirectly created a new prospects for cooperation in military-technical sphere.

It is possible that the West went to the lifting of sanctions, based on geopolitical considerations. Shiite Iran is supporting the rebels Houthis in Yemen and efforts of the coalition led by Saudi Arabia may not lead to success. This can threatens oil supplies to Europe and the USA. In addition, Iran has long expressed his desire to join the Shanghai cooperation organization, collective security Treaty organization and BRICS. Here West was forced to give Tehran a bone to block or slow down such moves.

The lifting of the sanctions on Iran may lead in the near future to the fall in oil prices. But this probably will be a short-term phenomenon caused by excessive speculation. In itself, the lifting of sanctions in the future for a few months will not affect the market, " said the Director of the Center for the study of world energy markets energy research Institute of Russian Academy of Sciences Vyacheslav Kulagin. No additional quantities of oil and gas on the market will be added to market immediately. But if the current economic situation in the world will stay then in the future the lifting of the sanctions on Iran will led to significant changes. Iran will obtain access to Western investments and technology. But again, in a short term the world energy market is not affected.

But if we talk about the future after 2020, Iran could become a leading exporter of oil and gas. Oil and gas production will increase. It is worth noting the value of the field "South Pars". Even before the sanctions, there were dozens of projects in this field, including some with the participation of Russian companies. If those projects will be revived, then they will have a serious impact. But this impact will be felt in 2020 or even 2030. In this timeframe Russia will get a serious competitor in the commodities market.

It is worth considering the geopolitical factor, in particular, the current situation in Yemen. Iran supports the Shiite population of this country, but does not yet have the financial capacity to significantly affect the situation. But in the future if the investment is going in Iran, such opportunities will appear. Accordingly, re-configuration of forces in the Middle East will be a bigger question than it is today.

Obama And His Warmonger Cabinet The Changing Face Of WWII TurnToIslam Islamic Forum & Social Network

Obama's main foreign policy guru -- Zbigniew Brzezinski. Main project: THE DESTRUCTION OF RUSSIA - the surest path to World War III.

Mark Brzezinski, son of Zbigniew, former Clinton NSC official and top Obama advisor. Architect of the 2004 "people power" color revolution/coup in Ukraine. Main project: THE DESTRUCTION OF RUSSIA.

warda A said:

dianek i agree, it looks like propaganda, clinton is worse than obama
i thought the democrats were more understanding than republicans
but when i ask people here if they have heard of ron paul i get a negative answer,but when it comes to foreign policies all of them take the same stand regardless of party they are in.


Ron Paul is a great candidate BUT he will not get elected. So I would rather throw my support behind the lesser of the evils running for office.
I actually, and this will probably provoke an arguement, would think that if Obama and Hillary join ranks as Pres/VP, they would be unstoppable to defeat those hateful republicans.

Again, I do love what Ron Paul stands for, but he is not electable as shown in the medias lack of coverage and air time for him. They won't let him win. So I would rather my vote go against the Republicans. I do not buy into the whole idea that the two of them are dangerous to the US. Remember Bill Clinton was in office and our country was strong, respected and not HATED by every nation. He and his wife have to have political like-mindedness. And Obama was completely ANTI Iraq invasion. So to say that he wants to bomb Pakistan is STUPID! What would be the point in that and I don't think he is dumb enough to say something that ridiculous. And overthrow Russia......WHY.....just nonsense.

dianek, Jan 10, 2008

Ron Paul is a great candidate BUT he will not get elected. So I would rather throw my support behind the lesser of the evils running for office.


One of the catch phrases under Ron Paul banners are:

"The lesser of two evils are still evil; Vote Ron Paul."

Huckabee, Mccain, Romney and Thompson are willing to attack Iran and Pakistan. One of them (forgot which one) suggests that they threaten and seriously consider nuclear bombing Makkah and Madina!!

Giuliani and Hiliary Clinton is like Bush on steroids!

Obama is like the rest but with a sheep suit on. Edwards also has suggested attacking Iran and Pakistan even after their own intelligence service has said that Iran does not even have a nuclear weapons program!

There are only three candidates that are representing the right cause - Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich and Mike Gravel. Ron Paul has the best chance of winning - otherwise the USA will really go down the bin in the next four years.

There economy will collapse, the dollar will crash (resulting in international paper money crash - a prophecy in Islam) and they will most likely attack one or two more Muslim countries. It's very likely. Salam alaikum.
PS: I hope everybody is learning how to grow their own vegetables.

dianek
I don't buy any of that. Looks like some negative propaganda is here on tti.
The poster, in my opinion has posted more of an ad than negative propaganda. I will start by analyzing Richard Clarke. Here is someone who was the darling of the 9/11 commission. He was also running the government on 9/11. The question is, how do we know this? He admits it. This is what he says, "Our coordinator for Continuity of Government (we will call him Fred here to protect his identity at the request of the government) joined us. How do I activate COG (Continuity of Government)? I asked him. In the exercises we had done, the person playing the President had always given that order. You tell me to do it, Fred replied. After relaying messages to Bush and Cheney, Clarke added, Tell them I am instituting COG. I turned back to Fred: Go." Here we have Clarke telling the executive branch what to do. This guy is part of the Rogue Network that carried out 9/11 and a higher level guy I might add.

Now for an analysis of The Brzezinski's. Brzezinski's only real function is he hates Russia. He argues that the Middle East is a side show and if you want to control the world you have to take down Moscow and Beijing. Lets analyze US-Russia relations Brzezinski lures the Soviets into invading Afghanistan and this a part of Islamic fundamentalism being a bulwark against Soviet communism. The Shah is ousted and rather than allow a populist come in Brzezinski insists on Khomeini. We all know about Bin Laden being CIA etc. What isn't talked about is the KLA in Bosnia was staffed with Al-CIA duh and Hizbollah fighters under the direction of CIA/MI-6/Mossad. The KLA attacks Serbia, Serbians commit genocide against the muslims, and in the process the US and NATO move into the region. This is Brzezinski's "Grand Chessboard". However it doesn't end there. When Putin ascends to power it is marked by a series Muslim Chechen terrorists. My interpretation of this is that it is the work outside forces, for example CIA, MI-6, Mossad etc. The reason I believe this is that most of Chechen leaders are sponsored by western intelligence and in fact Elias Akmadov lives on a US government stipend in Washington. He is famous for killing women and children in a hospital in Chechnya. Putin also destroys the finance oligarchs who were essentially running and looting Russia.Tarpley notes in 9/11 Synthetic Terror: Made In USA" Brzezinski's Grand Chessboard (19971) touted the benefits of US meddling central Asia for geopolitical reasons; this study was similar in spirit to the Karl Haushofer's 1934 Weltpolitik von heute, the manual of Nazi geopolitics. But how to manipulate the American people into accepting the burdens and human losses associated with such meddling? Brzezinski, a petty Polish aristocrat, replied: "The attitude of the American public toward the external projection of American power has been much more ambivalent. The public supported America's engagement in World War II largely because of the shock effect of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor." (Brzezinski 24-25) Someone else mentioned earlier about the color revolutions, but I add that they have occurred in more countries than just Ukraine but also Georgia and other Central Asian countries. One of the more recent developments is the US backing independence for Kosovo and Russia has responded by supporting the Native Americans succession from The United States. Sort of a tit for tat. So I hope you can see where this is all leading

William Perry, George Shultz Helping Ukraine is a US imperative

Israel and Palestine exchange bombs and rockets for weeks on end, with yet another cease fire announced on Aug. 26. A civil war is under way in Iraq; and a Russian military convoy violates the territorial integrity of Ukraine. These events demand a strategic approach on the part of the United States in which we maintain an ability to defend our interests in many places at once.

Read the story here.

The Grand Chessboard - US Geostrategy for Eurasia

The sudden emergence of the first and only global power has created a situation in which an equally quick end to its supremacy-either because of America's withdrawal from the world or because of the sudden emergence of a successful rival- would produce massive international instability. In effect, it would prompt global anarchy.

The Harvard political scientist Samuel P. Huntington is right in boldly asserting that,

"a world without US primacy will be a world with more violence and disorder and less democracy and economic growth than a world where the United States continues to have more influence than any other country in shaping global affairs. The sustained international primacy of the United States is central to the welfare and security of Americans and to the future of freedom, democracy, open economies, and international order in the world."

In that context, how America "manages" Eurasia is critical. Eurasia is the globe's largest continent and is geopolitically axial. A power that dominates Eurasia would control two of the world's three most advanced and economically productive regions. A mere glance at the map also suggests that control over Eurasia would almost automatically entail Africa's subordination, rendering the Western Hemisphere and Oceania geopolitically peripheral to the world's central continent.

About 75 percent of the world's people live in Eurasia, and most of the world's physical wealth is there as well, both in its enterprises and underneath its soil. Eurasia accounts for about 60 percent of the world's GNP and about three-fourths of the world's known energy resources.

Eurasia is also the location of most of the world's politically assertive and dynamic states. After the United States, the next six largest economies and the next six biggest spenders on military weaponry are located in Eurasia. All but one of the world's overt nuclear powers and all but one of the covert ones are located in Eurasia. The world's two most populous aspirants to regional hegemony and global influence are Eurasian.

All of the potential political and/or economic challengers to American primacy are Eurasian. Cumulatively, Eurasia's power vastly overshadows America's. Fortunately for America, Eurasia is too big to be politically one.


The time has come for the United States to formulate and prosecute an integrated, comprehensive, and long-term geostrategy for all of Eurasia. This need arises out of the interaction between two fundamental realities:

  1. America is now the only global superpower

  2. Eurasia is the globe's central arena.

US Secretary of Defense William Cohen and Ukrainian Defense Minister Olexandr Kuzmuk

watch as NATO exercises promise a secure Europe.

Hence, what happens to the distribution of power on the Eurasian continent will be of decisive importance to America's global primacy and to America's historical legacy.


In that context, for some time to come-for more than a generation- America's status as the world's premier power is unlikely to be contested by any single challenger. No nation-state is likely to match America in the four key dimensions of power (military, economic, technological, and cultural) that cumulatively produce decisive global political clout. Short of a deliberate or unintentional American abdication, the only real alternative to American global leadership in the foreseeable future is international anarchy. In that respect, it is correct to assert that America has become, as President Clinton put it, the world's "indispensable nation."


It is important to stress here both the fact of that indispensability and the actuality of the potential for global anarchy. The disruptive consequences of population explosion, poverty-driven migration, radicalizing urbanization, ethnic and religious hostilities, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction would become unmanageable if the existing and underlying nation-state-based framework of even rudimentary geopolitical stability were itself to fragment.

Without sustained and directed American involvement, before long the forces of global disorder could come to dominate the world scene. And the possibility of such a fragmentation is inherent in the geopolitical tensions not only of today's Eurasia but of the world more generally.


Implications of European Unity


The United States has always professed its fidelity to the cause of a united Europe. Ever since the days of the Kennedy administration, the standard invocation has been that of "equal partnership." Official Washington has consistently proclaimed its desire to see Europe emerge as a single entity, powerful enough to share with America both the responsibilities and the burdens of global leadership.


That has been the established rhetoric of the subject. But in practice, the United States has been less clear and less consistent. Does Washington truly desire a Europe that is a genuinely equal partner in world affairs, or does it prefer an unequal alliance? For example, is the United States prepared to share leadership with Europe in the Middle East, a region not only much closer geographically to Europe than to America but also one in which several European states have long-standing interests? The issue of Israel instantly comes to mind. US-European differences over Iran and Iraq have also been treated by the United States not as an issue between equals but as a matter of insubordination.

The emergence of a truly united Europe-especially if that should occur with constructive American support-will require significant changes in the structure and processes of the NATO alliance, the principal link between America and Europe. NATO provides not only the main mechanism for the exercise of US influence regarding European matters but the basis for the politically critical American military presence in Western Europe.

However, European unity will require that structure to adjust to the new reality of an alliance based on two more or less equal partners, instead of an alliance that, to use traditional terminology, involves essentially a hegemony and its vassals. That issue has so far been largely skirted, despite the modest steps taken in 1996 to enhance within NATO the role of the Western European Union (WEU), the military coalition of the Western European states. A real choice in favor of a united Europe will thus compel a far-reaching reordering of NATO, inevitably reducing the American primacy within the alliance.


In brief, a long-range American geostrategy for Europe will have to address explicitly the issues of European unity and real partnership with Europe. An America that truly desires a united and hence also a more independent Europe will have to throw its weight behind those European forces that are genuinely committed to Europe's political and economic integration.

Such a strategy will also mean junking the last vestiges of the once-hallowed US-UK special relationship.

The NATO Imperative


A policy for a united Europe will also have to address-though jointly with the Europeans-the highly sensitive issue of Europe's geographic scope.

The former is more a matter for a European decision, but a European decision on that issue will have direct implications for a NATO decision. The latter, however, engages the United States, and the US voice in NATO is still decisive.

Given the growing consensus regarding the desirability of admitting the nations of Central Europe into both the EU and NATO, the practical meaning of this question focuses attention on the future status of the Baltic republics and perhaps also that of Ukraine. There is thus an important overlap between the European dilemma discussed above and the second one pertaining to Russia. It is easy to respond to the question regarding Russia's future by professing a preference for a democratic Russia, closely linked to Europe.

Presumably, a democratic Russia would be more sympathetic to the values shared by America and Europe and hence also more likely to become a junior partner in shaping a more stable and cooperative Eurasia. But Russia's ambitions may go beyond the attainment of recognition and respect as a democracy. Within the Russian foreign policy establishment (composed largely of former Soviet officials), there still thrives a deeply ingrained desire for a special Eurasian role, one that would consequently entail the subordination to Moscow of the newly independent post-Soviet states.


With regard to Russia, the United States faces a dilemma.

US policy toward the vital geopolitical pivots of Ukraine and Azerbaijan cannot skirt that issue, and America thus faces a difficult dilemma regarding tactical balance and strategic purpose. Internal Russian recovery is essential to Russia's democratization and eventual Europeanization. But any recovery of its imperial potential would be inimical to both of these objectives.

Moreover, it is over this issue that differences could develop between America and some European states, especially as the EU and NATO expand.

The costs of the exclusion of Russia could be high- creating a self-fulfilling prophecy in the Russian mindset-but the results of dilution of either the EU or NATO could also be quite destabilizing.


Problems at the Periphery


Another major uncertainty looms in the large and geopolitically fluid space of Central Eurasia, maximized by the potential vulnerability of the Turkish-Iranian pivots. In the area from Crimea in the Black Sea directly eastward along the new southern frontiers of Russia, all the way to the Chinese province of Xinjiang, then down to the Indian Ocean and then westward to the Red Sea, then northward to the eastern Mediterranean Sea and back to Crimea, live about 400 million people, located in some twenty-five states, almost all of them ethnically as well as religiously heterogeneous and practically none of them politically stable.

Some of these states may be in the process of acquiring nuclear weapons.


This huge region, torn by volatile hatreds and surrounded by competing powerful neighbors, is likely to be a major battlefield both for wars among nation-states and, more likely, for protracted ethnic and religious violence. Whether India acts as a restraint or whether it takes advantage of some opportunity to impose its will on Pakistan will greatly affect the regional scope of the likely conflicts. The internal strains within Turkey and Iran are likely not only to get worse but to greatly reduce the stabilizing role these states are capable of playing within this volcanic region.

Such developments will in turn make it more difficult to assimilate the new Central Asian states into the international community, while also adversely affecting the American-dominated security of the Persian Gulf region. In any case, both America and the international community may be faced here with a challenge that will dwarf the recent crisis in the former Yugoslavia.


A possible challenge to American primacy from Islamic fundamentalism could be part of the problem in this unstable region. By exploiting religious hostility to the American way of life and taking advantage of the Arab-Israeli conflict, Islamic fundamentalism could undermine several pro-Western Middle Eastern governments and eventually jeopardize American regional interests, especially in the Persian Gulf.

However, without political cohesion and in the absence of a single genuinely powerful Islamic state, a challenge from Islamic fundamentalism would lack a geopolitical core and would thus be more likely to express itself through diffuse violence.


A Pragmatic Approach to China


A geostrategic issue of crucial importance is posed by China's emergence as a major power. The most appealing outcome would be to co-opt a democratizing and free-marketing China into a larger Asian regional framework of cooperation. But suppose China does not democratize but continues to grow in economic and military power?

A "Greater China" may be emerging, whatever the desires and calculations of its neighbors, and any effort to prevent that from happening could entail an intensifying conflict with China. Such a conflict could strain American-Japanese relations-for it is far from certain that Japan would want to follow America's lead in containing China-and could therefore have potentially revolutionary consequences for Tokyo's definition of Japan's regional role, perhaps even resulting in the termination of the American presence in the Far East.


However, accommodation with China will also exact its own price. To accept China as a regional power is not a matter of simply endorsing a mere slogan. There will have to be substance to any such regional preeminence.

To put it very directly,

Although China is emerging as a regionally dominant power, it is not likely to become a global one for a long time to come-and paranoiac fears of China as a global power are breeding megalomania in China, while perhaps also becoming the source of a self-fulfilling prophesy of intensified American-Chinese hostility. Accordingly, China should be neither contained nor propitiated.

It should be treated with respect as the world's largest developing state, and- so far at least -a rather successful one. Its geopolitical role not only in the Far East but in Eurasia as a whole is likely to grow as well. Hence, it would make sense to co-opt China into the G-7 annual summit of the world's leading countries, especially since Russia's inclusion has widened the summit's focus from economics to politics.


For historic as well as geopolitical reasons, China should consider America its natural ally. Unlike Japan or Russia, America has never had any territorial designs on China; and, unlike Great Britain, it never humiliated China. Moreover, without a viable strategic consensus with America, China is not likely to be able to keep attracting the massive foreign investment so necessary to its economic growth and thus also to its attainment of regional preeminence. For the same reason, without an American-Chinese strategic accommodation as the eastern anchor of America's involvement in Eurasia, America will not have a geostrategy for mainland Asia; and without a geostrategy for mainland

Asia, America will not have a geostrategy for Eurasia. Thus for America, China's regional power, co-opted into a wider framework of international cooperation, can be a vitally important geostrategic asset- in that regard coequally important with Europe and more weighty than Japan in assuring Eurasia's stability.


Emerging Challenges


In the past, international affairs were largely dominated by contests among individual states for regional domination. Henceforth, the United States may have to determine how to cope with regional coalitions that seek to push America out of Eurasia, thereby threatening America's status as a global power. However, whether any such coalitions do or do not arise to challenge American primacy will in fact depend to a very large degree on how effectively the United States responds to the major dilemmas identified here.


Potentially, the most dangerous scenario would be a grand coalition of China, Russia, and perhaps Iran, an "antihegemonic" coalition united not by ideology but by complementary grievances. It would be reminiscent in scale and scope of the challenge once posed by the Sino-Soviet bloc, though this time China would likely be the leader and Russia the follower. Averting this contingency, however remote it may be, will require a display of US geostrategic skill on the western, eastern, and southern perimeters of Eurasia simultaneously.


A geographically more limited but potentially even more consequential challenge could involve a Sino-Japanese axis, in the wake of a collapse of the American position in the Far East and a revolutionary change in Japan's world outlook. It would combine the power of two extraordinarily productive peoples, and it could exploit some form of "Asianism" as a unifying anti-American doctrine. However, it does not appear likely that in the foreseeable future China and Japan will form an alliance, given their recent historical experience; and a farsighted American policy in the Far East should certainly be able to prevent this eventuality from occurring.


Also quite remote, but not to be entirely excluded, is the possibility of a grand European realignment, involving either a German-Russian collusion or a Franco-Russian entente. There are obvious historical precedents for both, and either could emerge if European unification were to grind to a halt and if relations between Europe and America were to deteriorate gravely. Indeed, in the latter eventuality, one could imagine a European-Russian accommodation to exclude America from the continent. At this stage, all of these variants seem improbable. They would require not only a massive mishandling by America of its European policy but also a dramatic reorientation on the part of the key European states.


Whatever the future, it is reasonable to conclude that American primacy on the Eurasian continent will be buffeted by turbulence and perhaps at least by sporadic violence. America's primacy is potentially vulnerable to new challenges, either from regional contenders or novel constellations.

The currently dominant American global system, within which "the threat of war is off the table," is likely to be stable only in those parts of the world in which American primacy, guided by a long-term geostrategy, rests on compatible and congenial sociopolitical systems, linked together by American-dominated multilateral frameworks.


A Geostrategy For Eurasia


The point of departure for the needed policy has to be hard-nosed recognition of the three unprecedented conditions that currently define the geopolitical state of world affairs: for the first time in history,

  1. a single state is a truly global power

  2. a non-Eurasian state is globally the preeminent state

  3. the globe's central arena, Eurasia, is dominated by a non-Eurasian power

However, a comprehensive and integrated geostrategy for Eurasia must also be based on recognition of the limits of America's effective power and the inevitable attrition over time of its scope. The very scale and diversity of Eurasia, as well as the potential power of some of its states, limit the depth of American influence and the degree of control over the course of events.

This condition places a premium on geostrategic insight and on the deliberately selective deployment of America's resources on the huge Eurasian chessboard. And since America's unprecedented power is bound to diminish over time, the priority must be to manage the rise of other regional powers in ways that do not threaten America's global primacy.

Eurasia

In the short run, it is in America's interest to consolidate and perpetuate the prevailing geopolitical pluralism on the map of Eurasia. That puts a premium on maneuver and manipulation in order to prevent the emergence of a hostile coalition that could eventually seek to challenge America's primacy, not to mention the remote possibility of any one particular state seeking to do so.

By the middle term, the foregoing should gradually yield to a greater emphasis on the emergence of increasingly important but strategically compatible partners who, prompted by American leadership, might help to shape a more cooperative trans-Eurasian security system. Eventually, in the much longer run still, the foregoing could phase into a global core of genuinely shared political responsibility.

The most immediate task is to make certain that no state or combination of states gains the capacity to expel the United States from Eurasia or even to diminish significantly its decisive arbitrating role. However, the consolidation of transcontinental geopolitical pluralism should not be viewed as an end in itself but only as a means to achieve the middle-term goal of shaping genuine strategic partnerships in the key regions of Eurasia.

It is unlikely that democratic America will wish to be permanently engaged in the difficult, absorbing, and costly task of managing Eurasia by constant manipulation and maneuver, backed by American military resources, in order to prevent regional domination by any one power. The first phase must, therefore, logically and deliberately lead into the second, one in which a benign American hegemony still discourages others from posing a challenge not only by making the costs of the challenge too high but also by not threatening the vital interests of Eurasia's potential regional aspirants.


What that requires specifically, as the middle-term goal, is the fostering of genuine partnerships, predominant among them those with a more united and politically defined Europe and with a regionally preeminent China, as well as with (one hopes) a post-imperial and Europe-oriented Russia and, on the southern fringe of Eurasia, with a regionally stabilizing and democratic India. But it will be the success or failure of the effort to forge broader strategic relationships with Europe and China, respectively, that will shape the defining context for Russia's role, either positive or negative.


It follows that a wider Europe and an enlarged NATO will serve well both the short-term and the longer-term goals of US policy. A larger Europe will expand the range of American influence-and, through the admission of new Central European members, also increase in the European councils the number of states with a pro-American proclivity-without simultaneously creating a Europe politically so integrated that it could soon challenge the United States on geopolitical matters of high importance to America elsewhere, particularly in the Middle East. A politically defined Europe is also essential to the progressive assimilation of Russia into a system of global cooperation.


Meeting these challenges is America's burden as well as its unique responsibility. Given the reality of American democracy, an effective response will require generating a public understanding of the continuing importance of American power in shaping a widening framework of stable geopolitical cooperation, one that simultaneously averts global anarchy and successfully defers the emergence of a new power challenge.

These two goals-averting global anarchy and impeding the emergence of a power rival-are inseparable from the longer-range definition of the purpose of America's global engagement, namely, that of forging an enduring framework of global geopolitical cooperation.


In brief, the US policy goal must be unapologetically twofold:

  1. to perpetuate America's own dominant position for at least a generation and preferably longer still

  2. to create a geopolitical framework that can absorb the inevitable shocks and strains of social-political change while evolving into the geopolitical core of shared responsibility for peaceful global management

A prolonged phase of gradually expanding cooperation with key Eurasian partners, both stimulated and arbitrated by America, can also help to foster the preconditions for an eventual upgrading of the existing and increasingly antiquated UN structures. A new distribution of responsibilities and privileges can then take into account the changed realities of global power, so drastically different from those of 1945.

These efforts will have the added historical advantage of benefiting from the new web of global linkages that is growing exponentially outside the more traditional nation-state system.

That web, woven by:

  1. multinational corporations

  2. NGOs (non-governmental organizations, with many of them transnational in character)

  3. scientific communities

  4. reinforced by the Internet

...already creates an informal global system that is inherently congenial to more institutionalized and inclusive global cooperation.


In the course of the next several decades, a functioning structure of global cooperation, based on geopolitical realities, could thus emerge and gradually assume the mantle of the world's current "regent," which has for the time being assumed the burden of responsibility for world stability and peace.

Geostrategic success in that cause would represent a fitting legacy of America's role as the first, only, and last truly global superpower.

Commentary Brzezinski on the Syria Crisis

June 24, 2013 | The National Interest

Editor's Note: Following is a TNI interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, former White House national-security adviser under Jimmy Carter and now a counselor and trustee at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a senior research professor at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. The interview was conducted by Jacob Heilbrunn, TNI senior editor.

Heilbrunn: Here we are five years into the Obama administration, and you're stating that the West is engaging in "mass propaganda." Is Obama being drawn into Syria because he's too weak to resist the status quo? What happened to President Obama that brought us here?

Brzezinski: I can't engage either in psychoanalysis or any kind of historical revisionism. He obviously has a difficult problem on his hands, and there is a mysterious aspect to all of this. Just consider the timing. In late 2011 there are outbreaks in Syria produced by a drought and abetted by two well-known autocracies in the Middle East: Qatar and Saudi Arabia. He all of a sudden announces that Assad has to go-without, apparently, any real preparation for making that happen. Then in the spring of 2012, the election year here, the CIA under General Petraeus, according to The New York Times of March 24th of this year, a very revealing article, mounts a large-scale effort to assist the Qataris and the Saudis and link them somehow with the Turks in that effort. Was this a strategic position? Why did we all of a sudden decide that Syria had to be destabilized and its government overthrown? Had it ever been explained to the American people? Then in the latter part of 2012, especially after the elections, the tide of conflict turns somewhat against the rebels. And it becomes clear that not all of those rebels are all that "democratic." And so the whole policy begins to be reconsidered. I think these things need to be clarified so that one can have a more insightful understanding of what exactly U.S. policy was aiming at.

Heilbrunn: Historically, we often have aided rebel movements-Nicaragua, Afghanistan and Angola, for example. If you're a neocon or a liberal hawk, you're going to say that this is actually aiding forces that are toppling a dictator. So what's wrong with intervening on humanitarian grounds?

Brzezinski: In principle there's nothing wrong with that as motive. But I do think that one has to assess, in advance of the action, the risks involved. In Nicaragua the risks were relatively little given America's dominant position in Central America and no significant rival's access to it from the outside. In Afghanistan I think we knew that Pakistan might be a problem, but we had to do it because of 9/11. But speaking purely for myself, I did advise [then defense secretary Donald] Rumsfeld, when together with some others we were consulted about the decision to go into Afghanistan. My advice was: go in, knock out the Taliban and then leave. I think the problem with Syria is its potentially destabilizing and contagious effect-namely, the vulnerability of Jordan, of Lebanon, the possibility that Iraq will really become part of a larger Sunni-Shiite sectarian conflict, and that there could be a grand collision between us and the Iranians. I think the stakes are larger and the situation is far less predictable and certainly not very susceptible to effective containment just to Syria by American power.

Heilbrunn: Are we, in fact, witnessing a delayed chain reaction? The dream of the neoconservatives, when they entered Iraq, was to create a domino effect in the Middle East, in which we would topple one regime after the other. Is this, in fact, a macabre realization of that aspiration?

Brzezinski: True, that might be the case. They hope that in a sense Syria would redeem what happened originally in Iraq. But I think what we have to bear in mind is that in this particular case the regional situation as a whole is more volatile than it was when they invaded Iraq, and perhaps their views are also infected by the notion, shared by some Israeli right-wingers, that Israel's strategic prospects are best served if all of its adjoining neighbors are destabilized. I happen to think that is a long-term formula for disaster for Israel, because its byproduct, if it happens, is the elimination of American influence in the region, with Israel left ultimately on its own. I don't think that's good for Israel, and, to me, more importantly, because I look at the problems from the vantage point of American national interest, it's not very good for us.

Heilbrunn: You mentioned in an interview, I believe on MSNBC, the prospect of an international conference. Do you think that's still a viable approach, that America should be pushing much more urgently to draw in China, Russia and other powers to reach some kind of peaceful end to this civil war?

Brzezinski: I think if we tackle the issue alone with the Russians, which I think has to be done because they're involved partially, and if we do it relying primarily on the former colonial powers in the region-France and Great Britain, who are really hated in the region-the chances of success are not as high as if we do engage in it, somehow, with China, India and Japan, which have a stake in a more stable Middle East. That relates in a way to the previous point you raised. Those countries perhaps can then cumulatively help to create a compromise in which, on the surface at least, no one will be a winner, but which might entail something that I've been proposing in different words for more than a year-namely, that there should be some sort of internationally sponsored elections in Syria, in which anyone who wishes to run can run, which in a way saves face for Assad but which might result in an arrangement, de facto, in which he serves out his term next year but doesn't run again.

Heilbrunn: How slippery is the slope? Obama was clearly not enthusiastic about sending the arms to the Syrian rebels-he handed the announcement off to Ben Rhodes. How slippery do you think this slope is? Do you think that we are headed towards greater American intervention?

Brzezinski: I'm afraid that we're headed toward an ineffective American intervention, which is even worse. There are circumstances in which intervention is not the best but also not the worst of all outcomes. But what you are talking about means increasing our aid to the least effective of the forces opposing Assad. So at best, it's simply damaging to our credibility. At worst, it hastens the victory of groups that are much more hostile to us than Assad ever was. I still do not understand why-and that refers to my first answer-why we concluded somewhere back in 2011 or 2012-an election year, incidentally-that Assad should go.

Heilbrunn: Your response earlier about Israel was quite fascinating. Do you think that if the region were to go up into greater upheaval, with a diminution of American influence, Israel would see an opportunity to consolidate its gains, or even make more radical ones if Jordan were to go up in flames?

Brzezinski: Yes, I know what you're driving at. I think in the short run, it would probably create a larger Fortress Israel, because there would be no one in the way, so to speak. But it would be, first of all, a bloodbath (in different ways for different people), with some significant casualties for Israel as well. But the right-wingers will feel that's a necessity of survival.

But in the long run, a hostile region like that cannot be policed, even by a nuclear-armed Israel. It will simply do to Israel what some of the wars have done to us on a smaller scale. Attrite it, tire it, fatigue it, demoralize it, cause emigration of the best and the first, and then some sort of cataclysm at the end which cannot be predicted at this stage because we don't know who will have what by when. And after all, Iran is next door. It might have some nuclear capability. Suppose the Israelis knock it off. What about Pakistan and others? The notion that one can control a region from a very strong and motivated country, but of only six million people, is simply a wild dream.

Heilbrunn: I guess my final question, if you think you can get into this subject, is . . . you're sort of on the opposition bank right now. The dominant voice among intellectuals and in the media seems to be a liberal hawk/neoconservative groundswell, a moralistic call for action in Syria based on emotion. Why do you think, even after the debacle of the Iraq War, that the foreign-policy debate remains quite skewed in America?

Brzezinski: (laughs) I think you know the answer to that better than I, but if I may offer a perspective: this is a highly motivated, good country. It is driven by good motives. But it is also a country with an extremely simplistic understanding of world affairs, and with still a high confidence in America's capacity to prevail, by force if necessary. I think in a complex situation, simplistic solutions offered by people who are either demagogues, or are smart enough to offer their advice piecemeal; it's something that people can bite into. Assuming that a few more arms of this or that kind will achieve what they really desire, which is a victory for a good cause, without fully understanding that the hidden complexities are going to suck us in more and more, we're going to be involved in a large regional war eventually, with a region even more hostile to us than many Arabs are currently, it could be a disaster for us. But that is not a perspective that the average American, who doesn't really read much about world affairs, can quite grasp. This is a country of good emotions, but poor knowledge and little sophistication about the world.

Heilbrunn: Well, thank you. I couldn't agree more.

[May 27, 2013] Non-stop expansion

Edited Google translation from Russian
Evrasia

Today, March 6, the 68th U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry completes first overseas tour. The list of the countries he visited, beginning on February 24, is impressive: the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

Some experts heard in the statements that the new head of U.S. diplomacy systematically made throughout his journey, an attempt to remedy the situation, into which Hillary Clinton plunged the U.S. foreign policy - raffling feathers of the U.S. opponents and alienating allies. Once again they are talking that, at least for now, the U.S. expansionist pressure eased somewhat. There are opinions that Barack Obama will give us a chance to take a breath. Never mind that the first time "reset" did not work. There are even opinions that now Obama is starting to build a new foreign policy framework. And even that the time is not far off, when America will be forced to abandon its expansionist plans.

Americans are constantly finding new and new ways, new approaches and apply tremendous pressure as soon as existing technology of keeping vassals under control start failing and cease to work. That include tough scenarios that we have seen Afghanistan or Iraq.

Indeed, the American foreign expansion slowed somewhat, and pressure from the U.S. to other countries weakened - for objective reasons. However, the crisis faced by the American elite, the crisis of promotion of their interests, their values, like any crisis, even on a global scale - was never a reason for the Americans to retreat. The emergence of such difficulties for persistent, bend on world domination elite, with is the type of elite that the US has, the elite which relentlessly try to increase their sphere of influence, can not be something that will knock them out of the saddle, demoralizing and/or cause to abandon their plans.

This situation can develop into to separate paths. First, the current crisis for American expansion will create some kind of immunity among the American elite, meaning that they adapt to this crisis, amend exposed the weaknesses, strengthen them and will continue to move toward their goal of word domination, but using other methods, and other technologies.

What we have, in principle, and have seen in recent years. Americans take any technology to promote their interests, for example, the technology of "color" revolutions, deploy it once, twice, three times ... and then a fourth, and fifth. But on the sixth time it begins to falter as states and nations are beginning to resist the technology by solving its nature, and better understanding its meaning, its consequences. At this point they immediately abandon it, or postpone until better times. But at this very moment they adopt a different, alternative technological model, which they begin to implement immediately.

American intellectuals pursue non-stop development of new technologies of subduing and controlling other nations by manipulation of social processes, contradictions in the societies, and, in fact, by working with elites of those societies. History of selection of such technologies can be traced for the last several decades. We still remember how in the Soviet period, they used economic leverage to get a foot in those States, which tried to rely more on the Soviet bloc. This, incidentally, is fine details was described by former U.S. political consultant John Perkins in his book "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man." But when this technology has ceased to operate, has exhausted its possibilities, they moved on to the "color revolutions" technology developed by Gene Sharp. When the "color revolutions" technology begun to fail, they moved on to the theory of controlled chaos by Steven Mann, which is implemented today in the Middle East. And on the other approach is in the pipeline.

Americans are constantly finding new and new ways, new approaches and apply tremendous pressure as soon as existing technology of keeping vassals under control start failing and cease to work. That include tough scenarios that we have seen Afghanistan or Iraq.

Therefore it is naive to argue that stopping or slowing U.S. expansion due to economic crisis will cause them to abandon their idea of ​​global domination. Especially, taking into account that the historically expansionist policy of the United States can't be changes by election of the next U.S. president, no matter what are his own views and approaches. He is only a nominal representative of the entrenched for the last two centuries American elite, a hired manager, recruited by the powers that be.

But there is another scenario - a situation in which the number of failures, errors and blunders will increase, and the errors can became self-reproducible. In this case a single failure will entail two new additional failures, which in their turn will cause another four, and so on. This is what is called a systemic crisis, which can be eliminated only by the change of the elite.

US hegemony The USA, World Hegemony and Cold War II

...let us use a representative article by a highly representative member of the US foreign policy establishment, Zbigniew Brzezinski: "A Geostrategy for Eurasia." (6) The title reflects a US/Western tendency to think big, and to be arrogant.

A collection of his basic points:

But it carries the seeds of its own destruction because of the counterforces it will produce. Any effort to conceive of the world in terms of regions and states as if human beings did not matter also carries the seeds of own destruction because of the popular forces it will generate - like for WTO and MAI. To have a geostrategy is already questionable, to do so treating a major part of humanity as objects for own security and enhancement is beyond the questionable.

Kissinger, the inconvenient adviser

By Dmitry Shlapentokh

The Iraq war continues to be the central act of George W Bush's US presidency, and he is doing his best to find a solution to the problem. He rallies the masses for the cause, castigating his Democratic opponents almost as traitors who comfort the enemy. He also recently invoked a meeting of notables from previous administrations to underscore the fact that he looks for advice from all types of people, not just his close circle. Among the many invitees, there was a notable exception - Henry Kissinger, secretary of state under Richard Nixon and universally accepted as one of the most experienced and savvy foreign-policy experts in recent US history.

While the absence of Kissinger was surprising for the New York Times correspondent who covered the story, it could hardly be so for those who could trace Kissinger's relationship with the present administration, which is hardly amicable. He resigned from the chairmanship of the committee that was to investigate the reasons for the events of September 11, 2001. He was dropped from the list of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) advisers, and in general his advice on foreign policy was not much appreciated. Quite possibly he had broken some cardinal rules in these important - and what would seem to be quite lucrative - fields.

The history of political advising is an old one; as a matter of fact, one of the first textbooks on how to be a good adviser can be found in Iraq. The ancient Babylonian text called Conversation of the Master with the Slave deals with a story in which the master asks his slave about various possible undertakings.

"Slave," proclaimed the master, "I would spend my life making love to beautiful women."

The slave immediately responded: "Sure, master, you are absolutely right. There is nothing more pleasurable than making love to beautiful women."

"No, slave," the master said, changing his mind abruptly, "I would not make love to beautiful women."

"You are absolutely right. Women are perilous creatures, and you would ruin your health and fortune messing with women."

A more serious foreign-policy issue was also raised. "Slave, I am going to war."

"You are absolutely right in your advice. War is the only proper deed for man. Those who engage in war bring themselves fame and booty."

"Slave, I will not go to war."

"Yes, master, this is the right decision. War is a hard labor, bringing wounds and death."

One could, of course, look at this dialogue from different perspectives. A historian of philosophy might state that the dialogue is an example of sophistry, long before the Sophists emerged in Greece. A post-modernist would assure us that the quoted text clearly demonstrates that so-called objective truth does not exist, and that one simply engages in various "discourses". The slave himself, if he were resurrected, would say that this way of engaging in conversation had a very pragmatic explanation: right "advising" ensured that he was treated nicely and invited to the parties with good food and wine.

And this explains why Kissinger was not invited to the meeting of notables and has fallen out of favor with the Bush administration in general. He gave the wrong advice, especially in regard to the Iraq war, and in general seems not to be much fascinated with the performance of the administration. In order to understand his position, one should discuss at least briefly the crux of Bush's problems.

Quite a few of the president's critics, especially American journalists at the other end of the political spectrum, have proclaimed that the major problem with Bush is that he is an unprincipled liar. He lied to the American people and to Congress and, in this respect, is absolutely different from the majority of honest Americans.

The critics are wrong: Bush has done nothing different from the majority. Lying is not an exception; it is a way of life and is called "advertising" - the very foundation of US capitalism. Colleges "advertise" degrees in subjects ranging from "philosophy" to "women's studies", assuring prospective students that upon spending thousands of dollars and years of study learning how to fight "male chauvinist discourse", for example, their lives and especially their job prospects will take a radical turn for the better. The pharmaceutical industry advertises drugs that will make you healthy and happy, playing down side-effects. And, of course, consumers are overwhelmed with propositions offering often useless goods. Everybody lies, from the president ("I did not have sexual relations with that woman") to respectable-looking chairmen of departments and, of course, the broad masses.

Lying is an essential ingredient of life and not, of course, only in "the land of the free and the home of the brave". The problem emerges not in the process of lying but when those who lie start to believe their own stories. For generations, Soviet leaders promulgated the "monolithic unity of the party and the people" and the great "friendship" of the people of the USSR. This worked fairly well because the rulers were fully aware that it was a lie and kept their iron grip over the Soviets. Mikhail Gorbachev was possibly the first and last Soviet leader who, indeed, believed in what had been preached. Logically, Gorbachev released the Soviets from the grip of the Communist Party and the secret police, and the regime and the empire collapsed.

Similarly, Bush is not so much a liar as a true believer. He definitely believes that the US economy is the most efficient, and that "unfair practices" have prevented US goods and services, eg education, from being competitive. He believes that US military power is indestructible and can beat any enemy. And finally, he believes that US democracy is the best of all possible institutions and that the charm of Lady Liberty is even more irresistible than the shells and bombs of the US Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force. He believes all this because it is the belief of a considerable part of the electorate, who are induced to such a belief because of the geopolitical luck of the collapse of the Soviet Union - one of the major reasons Bush engaged in the Afghan and Iraq wars. And while Bush is a spiritual child of this period of US geopolitical triumph, Kissinger experienced quite a different era, one that shapes his vision of the current war.

Kissinger's apparent disapproval of Bush's course has nothing to do with filmmaker Michael Moore's blasting the president as a corrupt imperialist predator who uses the power of the state and the blood of thousands to enrich the greedy and utterly cynical super-rich. Nor is he similar to Zbigniew Brzezinski, former adviser to Jimmy Carter - - and also not among the guests - in damning Bush for playing Caesar and forsaking US democratic traditions. Kissinger, as the proponent of geopolitical pragmatism, has nothing against the use of imperial might for tangible economic benefits. Nor was he a faithful knight of Lady Liberty: he not only had an amicable relationship with Leonid Brezhnev and Mao Zedong, he personally helped overthrow the democratically elected Salvador Allende and replace him with pro-American right-wing military dictator Augusto Pinochet. Moreover, Kissinger's master, Nixon, not only belonged to the same party as Bush, but also was guilty of the same Caesar-type perspective.

Kissinger's skepticism was not based on moral/philosophical disagreements or even partisanship. The reason was much simpler: as US secretary of state during the Vietnam War, he understood that the military might of a superpower was pretty much irrelevant in guerrilla-type warfare. He also understood that "Iraqization" of the Iraq war would most likely follow the road of the "Vietnamization" of the Vietnam War. The war, if winnable at all, will require that the United States stay in Iraq and Afghanistan, not for a few years but for generations. In fact, Vietnam's guerrillas started by fighting the Japanese in the 1940s and stopped in Cambodia with the death of Pol Pot in the mid-1990s - a war that lasted for 50 years. Kissinger is quite aware that the American public would not endure such a conflict, and that while speedy withdrawal or actual defeat would be a disaster, the US needs a way to extricate itself slowly from the Iraqi-Afghan quagmire.

And here Kissinger believes that nothing can be done without the help of Iraq's Asian neighbors, implicitly Iran. In fact, some Democrats have stated that the US needs this help to extricate itself from Iraq's problems. Indeed, Iran is the most probable source because no one else will keep troops practically indefinitely in Iraq and because Iran has strong support among Iraq's Shi'ite majority.

But why are Kissinger and possibly others advisers not heard? The question seems to be clear: Iran is openly pursuing nuclear weapons. India and Pakistan did the same, becoming nuclear powers without authorization of the global community. This does not prevent the US from maintaining the most cordial relationship with both of them and providing them with advanced weapons.

There is, of course, another argument: Iran is a terrorist dictatorial state with which the "civilized" US cannot talk. This is also wrong. Both Red China and the USSR were dictatorial states. Not only did the US talk with them, but Josef Stalin was amiable "Uncle Joe" during World War II and was seen as a trusted ally of the United States. And Mao was equally pleasing to American eyes during the Cold War, when Red China was viewed as an essential counterbalance to the USSR.

And finally, there is the argument that Iran is sponsoring terror and does not want actual stability in Iraq. This is also wrong. To start with, many powers, the United States included, have used terrorists and similar shady groups in fighting their major adversaries. The US actually created al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, using them against the Soviets in Afghanistan. At the same time, the US is not equated with terrorists.

The same could be said about post-revolutionary Iran. There, as in post-revolutionary Russia and China, revolutionary ideology soon enough became a cover-up for primordial nationalism. Iran had no long-term interest in supporting Sunni extremists. In fact, the Iranian regime was at loggerheads with the Taliban and was ready for war with them. So why could the US not talk with Iran, as Kissinger implied, as when Kissinger and Vietnamese representatives talked with each other and the United States started to extricate itself from the quagmire, a process that would, of course, be painful but not as disastrous as collapse?

There are several important differences between the Americans in Vietnam and the Americans dealing with the Iranian war - and these differences are not related to the fact that the Vietnamese had no atomic weapons and were not connected to international terrorism. The point is in the case of Vietnam, the Americans implied that they were talking not with the Vietnamese themselves but with their powerful backer, the USSR, the other superpower. In the case of Iran, the US would have to speak with just Iran - a small, underdeveloped country.

This would imply that the US should regard it as a peer, at a time when Europeans see the US not as a major guarantor of their security but as a competitor, and when US economic and scientific/educational leadership is increasingly challenged. Direct negotiation and especially agreement/power-sharing with Iran would mean, if not geopolitical "default", at least a strong "correction" of the US geopolitical net value. And the pain of this "correction" would be emphasized by the fact that the Bush administration came to power on the crest of unprecedented reaffirmation of US global leadership after the sudden collapse of its major geopolitical rival, the Soviet Union.

The very painfulness of this decision explains why Kissinger and other pragmatists were not heard, why Kissinger has fallen out of favor with the present US administration, and why he was not invited to the president's splendid party of notables. Bush's "party" did, of course, include the current secretary of state, whose rise to power was, apparently, in many ways due to the maxim well known already in the days of ancient Babylon: "You always give to your master the advice that he would like to hear."

Dmitry Shlapentokh, PhD, is associate professor of history, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Indiana University South Bend. He is author of East Against West: The First Encounter - The Life of Themistocles, 2005.

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