Oct 062015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



Western imperialism, in all of its manifestation, is being challenged by five political leaders, through diplomacy, moral persuasion and public pressure. In recent time, Pope Francis, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn have raised fundamental questions concerning (1) war and peace in the Middle East and the Caucuses; (2) climate change and the destruction of the environment; (3) economic sanctions, military threats and confrontation; and (4) growing inequalities of class, gender and race.

The New Global Agenda

These five protagonists of a new global agenda differ from past critics from the left both in the style and substance of their politics.

The politics of change, reform and peace in the near immediate period has a particular complex, heterodox complexion, which contains traditional conservative and popular components.

These leaders have a global audience and major impact on world public opinion – and indirectly and directly on Western politics.

Defying Past Left-Right Divisions

These five leaders defy the traditional left-right division. Pope Francis demands immigrant rights, equal pay for women, diplomacy and peace negotiations instead of war, and greater class equality. He excoriates neoliberal, capitalism (“the dung of the devil”).

But he also defends traditional Catholic doctrine on abortion, divorce, contraception and homosexuality. He opposes class struggle and social revolution in favor of class collaboration, dialogue, and negotiations.

President Putin favors negotiations and peaceful resolution of conflicts in Syria and the Ukraine. He is an ardent advocate of a global coalition to fight Islamic terrorism. He has sharply reduced western pillage of the Russian economy and restored salaries, pensions and employment. He has restored Russian military capacity and national security and reduced terrorist assaults from the Caucuses.

At the same time Putin supports some of the biggest Yeltsin era billionaires; is closely aligned with the conservative Russian Orthodox Church; and is excavating the remains of the last tyrannical Russian Tsar to honor him and his family.

President Xi Jinping has played a leading role in promoting increases in consumer spending, wages, pensions and social welfare. He has deepened links with US high tech industries and signed off on a major reduction of carbon fuels and pollution, offering $3 billion dollars to fund alternatives for less developed countries. He has fired, prosecuted and jailed over 250,000 corrupt government and party officials who exploited and abused the public, while limiting operations of speculative Western hedge funds.

At the same time, Xi retains the authoritarian one party system; defends China’s one hundred-plus billionaires; and restricts all forms of independent class political and trade union organizations.

Hassan Rouhani is both devout practicing Muslim and a staunch advocate of peace. He supports a ‘nuclear-free Middle East’. He is a consequential opponent of terrorism by Salafist Islamists, Zionists, Christians and Hindus. He is the leading critic of Saudi Arabia’s military intervention in Yemen and a principled defender of national self-determination. Internally he has reduced authoritarian state controls and censorship of free expression and promoted scientific and technological research – in a country where half of research scientists are women.

President Rohani has signed a high risk peace agreement with the US and its partners (5 + 1) dismantling Iran’s nuclear facilities and opening its military installations to international inspection by an international  atomic agency of dubious neutrality.

At the same time, Rohani opposes a secular state, supports liberalizing the economy, invites foreign multi-nationals to exploit lucrative oil and gas fields, and supports the corrupt and regressive US backed Shia regime in Iraq.

Jeremy Corbyn, the newly elected head of the British Labor Party, has been a consequential critic of neo-liberal capitalism and a strong advocate of public ownership of strategic economic sectors. He backs a highly graduated progressive income tax to finance a comprehensive welfare program.

He advocates a democratic foreign policy that opposes Anglo-American and Israeli imperialism in the Middle East and elsewhere.

However, upon taking office as head of the neo-liberal, pro-imperialist Labor Party, he confronts a parliamentary party dominated by his adversaries. His appointments to the “shadow cabinet” are overwhelmingly pro-NATO and pro-European Union; some even oppose his Keynesian budgetary agenda. Moreover, Corbyn endorses ‘working in the EU’ and promises to support a ‘yes vote’ in any referendum, even as the world witnessed how the EU imposed harsh austerity budgets on Latvia, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and other countries in financial straits.

The Collective Impact of the Five

There is no question that these five leaders have made a major impact on world public opinion on issues of peace, climate change, equality and the need to reach international agreements. In most cases one or more of the leaders have exercised greater influence on a specific public or region and have had a greater impact on some issues over others.

The Pope, for example, has greater influence on Christians; Rohani on the Muslim public; Putin, Corbyn and Xi on secular opinion. Xi and the Pope have a greater impact on proposals for climate change. Putin, the Pope, Rohani and Xi are prominent in advocating peaceful resolution of conflicts; Corbyn and the Pope on reducing inequalities and securing social justice.

With the exception of Corbyn and Xi, all support traditional religious beliefs and observances. Most are ‘ecumenical’ in the sense of supporting religious tolerance.

Most important, all pursue these goals through persuasion, diplomacy and winning over public opinion. None of these world leaders have invaded or overthrown incumbent adversarial regimes or occupied countries. All are leading opponents of terror – especially ISIS.

President Putin is playing a leading role in challenging President Obama to join a broad coalition, including Bashar Assad and Iran, in fighting ISIS terrorism.

Washington, despite its rhetorical hostility, was pressured to respond – ‘partially favorable’.

President Putin has also taken the initiative in the Middle East. He leads a coalition, including Iraq, Iran and Syria to co-ordinate the war against terrorism.

China’s President Xi has committed military forces in support of the Russia’s anti-terrorist proposal for Syria. The Pope has offered tacit support via his pronouncements against terrorism and for international coalitions.

As a consequence of the massive flood of refugees resulting from the US-EU-Saudi-Turkey support of Islamist mercenaries invading Syria and Iraq, several European allies of Washington are reconsidering their anti-Assad policies. They are moving toward the broad front proposals of Putin-Rohani-Xi and the Pope.

The social-economic impact of the Pope’s call for social justice is less apparent, apart from the routine lip-service from Western leaders. Among the quintet, Rohani is looking toward ‘market solutions’: inviting Western and Asian investors to revitalize the oil industry. Xi is cracking down on big time fraudsters in China and abroad, but has yet to embrace a comprehensive welfare and incomes policy. Putin presides over a petrol-economy in recession and has relied on private corporate oligarchs and overseas investors to regain growth. Corbyn’s egalitarian pronouncements have little impact among Labor Party politicians and his shadow cabinet. Moreover, he appears reluctant to mobilize the rank and file Labor activists for a fight for his program within the  Party.

The climate change and environmental struggle received robust backing from the Pope –in his speeches to the US Congress, the United Nations and in his mass gatherings.

President Xi reinforced the message by proposing to fund a massive clean air program for the less developed countries, while setting rigorous targets to reduce pollution in China. There is no doubt that their message is well received by all environmental groups and the general public. Some political leaders, including Obama, appear to be, in part, receptive.

Rohani, Putin and Corbyn have played only a minor role in the defense of the environment.

Response of the Western Powers

The US, EU, Japan, Israel and Australia, referred to as the ‘Western Powers’ paid lip service to the cause of peace, while continuing to pursue military objectives via air wars, cross border terrorist activities and military build ups.

In general terms, they manipulate a double discourse – of talking peace and bombing adversaries.

However, the Western Powers feel the pressure of ‘the quintet,’ which is winning the political ideological contest. The ‘Russian threat’ is no longer viewed as credible by most of the international public. China’s international financial initiatives have gained major support from across the globe.

Japanese militarization has provoked mass domestic unrest and regional concerns – especially in Southeast Asia.

Israel is a pariah, not just in the Middle East but is increasingly viewed with hostility by the rest of international public opinion.

Germany, Europe’s leading economic power, has been discredited because of the massive fraud scandal by Volkswagen, its leading automobile maker and major exporter.

In other words, while the Western Powers retain military superiority and important markets, their overseas policies have suffered severe setbacks and their leaders have lost credibility. Their domestic and overseas supporters are turning against them. Moreover, the moral authority of Western leaders has been severely questioned by the Pope’s harsh critique of the ‘exclusionary’ policies toward immigrants and refugees, the excessive greed of capitalism, the reliance on force instead of diplomacy and the massive human suffering due to capitalism’s unrelenting destruction of the environment.

The Pope’s generalities would not have had such a powerful political impact, if they were not accompanied by (1) the selective use of arms and diplomacy emanating from President Putin; (2) the diplomatic successes of President Rohani; and (3) the economic muscle of President Xi, in support of economic development and international co-operation on the environment and climate change.


From widely divergent origins and diverse ideological backgrounds, five political leaders have set a new agenda for dealing with war and peace, equality and inequality, security and terrorism and environmental protection. Except for Jeremy Corbyn, who in any case will probably be rendered impotent by his own party’s elite, none of these progressive leaders’ ideologies is derived from the secular left.

They challenge the status quo, and raise the central issues of our time, at a time when the secular left is marginal or self-destructs (as Greece’s Syriza, Spain’s Podemos or Italy’s Five Stars in Southern Europe).

Faced with this heterodox reality, the Left has the choice of (1) remaining in sterile isolation; (2) embracing one, some, or all of ‘the quintet’; (3) or aligning with them on specific pronouncements and proposals.

The five have sufficient drawbacks, ‘contradictions’ and limitations to warrant criticism and distance. But in the big picture, on the major issues of our time, these leaders have adopted progressive policies, which warrant whole-hearted active support. They are the only ‘show’ in the real world – if we are serious about joining the struggle against imperial wars, terrorism, environmental destruction and injustice.

Sep 212015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



Step by step, Washington is inexorably setting up a major provocation against China. Until now, the Obama regime tightened a military encirclement of China, expanding its armed forces agreements with Japan, the Philippines and Australia. In addition, it has promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a regional trade agreement which openly excludes China. Obama has ordered a major naval build-up in the South China Sea and embarked on extensive cyber-espionage of Chinese industries and the government via major US high-tech companies, as revealed by Edward Snowden in his release of confidential NSA document.

As President Xi Jinping prepares for his first US visit as China’s leader on September 25, with the aim of extending economic ties between Chinese and US business (especially with the high tech corporations in Seattle and Silicon Valley), the Obama regime has threatened to impose a series of punitive sanctions against Chinese companies and individuals for ‘cyber-espionage’, essentially undermining the purpose of his trip.

Characterizing the Chinese as ‘cyber-thieves’ and imposing sanctions on Chinese businesses on the eve of Xi’s visit will be justifiably seen as a deliberate humiliation and a provocation, designed to treat China as a mere vassal state of Washington.

This will force the Chinese government to retaliate on behalf of Chinese businesses – and President Xi is fully capable of imposing retaliatory sanctions against multi-billion dollar high tech US corporations, which had been flourishing – up to now – in China.

Obama’s decision to provoke China on multiple fronts reflects the overwhelming influence of the militarist power configurations in Washington: the Pentagon, the NSA and the Zionist-militarist ideologues.

In contrast to Washington’s aggressive policy, the major US high tech corporations are almost unanimous in their opposition to Obama’s ‘military pivot’ and are appalled by the threat of cyber sanctions, rightly calling them a “needless provocation”.

For its part, Wall Street has taken an intermediary position – hoping Washington will coerce China into ‘opening’ its protected financial markets to the big US banks. It doesn’t necessarily support aggressive sanctions, which could provoke a response from China closing off lucrative opportunities in the world’s biggest financial market.

Background to a Momentous Confrontation

China’s growth and overseas economic expansion has increasingly challenged US market supremacy in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

China’s relationship with the US, EU and Japanese multi-national corporations has changed due to its recent technological advances in its manufacturing and service sectors moving its production up the value chain. Increasingly, the Chinese have been demanding technology transfers from their multinational partners and an increasing use of locally manufactured parts in their assembly plants.

China’s economic expansion and industrial maturation has evoked divergent responses from the elites in Washington, Silicon Valley and Wall Street.

US Elites Diverge

The Pentagon and the White House developed the ‘military pivot’ to deal with China’s ascendency as an economic world power. This is essentially a policy of strategic confrontations, including military encirclement through regional base agreements, deliberate economic exclusion through regional trade agreements and political provocation through threatened sanctions. US military bases have expanded and a huge naval armada patrols China’s maritime frontier. There are US fighter planes flying over Beijing’s reclaimed island installations while the US State Department goads China’s neighbors to stake their own territorial claims in the South China Sea.

The White House and its highly militarized State Department have launched a full-scale propaganda campaign through the US mass media, criminalizing China with unsubstantiated charges of espionage. The range, intensity and frequency of these accusations indicate that this campaign is not some clever diplomatic ploy intended to squeeze out concessions in an otherwise peaceful relation. Rather Washington’s criminalization of China is meant to provoke a full rupture in diplomatic, political and economic relations and prepare for harsh military confrontations.

Washington’s campaign to criminalize China includes the hysterical claims that China has engaged in the long-term, large scale theft of US intellectual property rights. By falsely attributing China’s technological advances to ‘theft’ Washington denigrates China’s endogenous scientific and technological achievements as well as criminalizing the Beijing and Chinese companies.

In the last few years, the US arrested several Chinese scientists and issued warrants for others, publicly accusing them of spying on US companies. The charges against several of the scientists were later quietly dropped by the FBI for lack of evidence but not before the scientists had seen their careers destroyed. The negative propaganda impact on the US public was successful – Chinese scholars and scientists were depicted as spies. Whistleblower Edward Snowden’s revelations of National Security Agency’s documents clearly show that it was the US which was engaged in large-scale spying on Beijing, using major US IT corporations operating in China as a principal vehicle for data theft.

The US has accused China of violating international norms regarding the governance of the internet – claiming that Chinese authorities exercise censorship and control over US IT companies as well as its own citizens. In other words, Washington denies Chinese sovereignty by claiming extra-territorial jurisdiction over the internet! Along the same lines, Washington asserts that China has blocked US market access by insisting that public agencies rely on Chinese suppliers and that US firms store their data in China. China’s new policies developed after they discovered that US multi-national corporations were working hand-in-glove with the NSA and other US intelligence agencies. Is it any wonder that China sought to protect its industrial and trade secrets, as well as national security, by limiting access for US IT corporations?

The “Financial Press”: Wars over Markets

Washington’s provocative campaign to criminalize China and Chinese industries has been amplified in the financial pages of the respectable US and British press. The degree to which the leading Anglo-American financial newspapers, the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times, have become rabid advocates of Obama’s militarist confrontational policy instead of serving the business community’s market interests, evaluating the impact of sanctions on US high tech multi-nationals and presenting the much more moderate position of the major high-tech multi-nationals is striking.

The financial press’s shrill campaign is designed to paint China as a corporate criminal and ignores major US corporate opposition to any rash military actions. This propaganda campaign is warning the US IT elite of an imminent barrage of economic sanctions against China’s burgeoning cyber industries. These Sanctions could be announced prior to or even during President Xi Jinping’s visit to the US– if the militarists have their way.

White House Sanctions: The Divergences in US Policy

Despite White House rhetoric and anti-China hysteria, most US IT corporations have reaped huge profits from their sales and business arrangements with the Chinese state and Chinese businesses. According to one executive, “Apple is the standout success story, with sales of the iPhone rising 75 percent in China over the past year (2014)’. (FT 9/12 – 9/13/15).

Senior IT executives have expressed their willingness to accommodate China’s demands a change in the way they do business, including technology transfers, because they see “huge opportunities (for profit) in the near term”. The last thing Silicon Valley wants is for Washington to provoke hostile retaliation from China if Obama imposes sanctions:  That would entail the loss of hundreds of billions of dollars!

In the highly militarized-‘Zionized’ Obama administration, immersed in the politics of provocation and war, the multi-nationals do not have the final say.

China’s Maturing Capitalism: Indigenous Innovations

China’s maturing capitalism has been accompanied by significant changes. And in 2006, the Chinese leadership announced a new policy promoting ‘indigenous innovation’. The purpose of the policy was two-fold: to become less dependent on foreign technology and to combat the growing threat of Washington’s espionage via US high tech corporations operating in China.

In line with these strategic goals, in 2009 China ruled that only companies with locally developed technology would be allowed to bid for public procurement contracts.

In 2010, Google’s operations in China were shutdown when it was revealed that the company had acted as a ‘transmission belt’ transferring sensitive Chinese data to the NSA.  Washington immediately denounced China for what it termed “censorship” of Google.

As the endogenous innovation policy gained momentum, the US MNC monopoly of China’s high tech market was undermined. The MNC’s called for Washington to intervene and force China to “open” its markets to US dominance.

In strategic terms, the tie-in between the US IT MNCs and Washington boomeranged: While spying for NSA may have gained short-term favors for the high tech sector, it undermined strategic relations with China and its lucrative market. The IT moguls re-thought the strategy and sought greater autonomy from the NSA to regain China’s trust and re-enter its market.

High Tech Diplomacy

The high tech multinational corporations are eager to welcome China’s President Xi on his visit, viewing it as an opportunity to mend and expand relations. The Silicon Valley-Seattle corporate elite oppose sanctions against while the White House claim to be acting on their behalf.

The US high tech elite are aware that American IT companies must accommodate China’s demands to transfer and share technology. They have adopted a realistic perspective that if they do not share markets, technology and sales – they can lose out entirely.

Apple, IBM, CISCO, Qualcomm have declared that they would rather cooperate with China’s indigenous innovations policy than face big losses or total exclusion from the Chinese market.

Even Google, which served as the NSA’s willing accomplice and was expelled for espionage against China, is now seeking approval for a limited re-entry.

Wall Street Diplomacy: Pressure not Provocation

The big Wall Street bankers, on the other hand, want the White House to pressure China to de- regulate its financial markets. They want China to allow American hedge funds and speculators to sell short and artificially drive down the value of Chinese stocks, increasing volatility and discouraging investors.

It is questionable whether Wall Street’s idea of US “pressure” extends to applying punitive economic sanctions. After all, limited financial access under present circumstances is still far more lucrative than total exclusion which could result from Chinese retaliation in response to White House sanctions.


The divergent interests and approaches among US imperial elites, between high powered IT corporate CEO’s and Pentagon and White House militarists is evident in two parallel meetings taking place during President Xi’s visit.

During his visit to the US, Xi will stop over in Seattle to confer with top IT executives, coinciding with the US-China Internet Industry Forum. The timing and location (Seattle) of the Forum is not coincidental. Its timing was planned by the Chinese and reflects their influence and capacity to play-off powerful US economic elites against Washington’s war mongers and Pentagon militarists.

The White House has been pushing for a fight with China ever since Obama announced his so-called ‘pivot to Asia’. The saber rattling has escalated over the past two years, aided and abetted by an all-out propaganda campaign denigrating China’s scientific and economic performance and exaggerating fears of its defense modernization programs. When one reads the Wall Street Journal or the Financial Times, one would think the Chinese economy is on the verge of collapse. They describe the drop in China’s projected annual growth from 7.3% to 7% as ‘catastrophic’! If the EU and US grew at half that rate, the financial scribes would claim an ‘economic miracle’!

Denigration of the Chinese economy; screeds and characterizations of the Chinese as industrial thieves engaged in spying and criminal behavior and the wild paranoid warnings about the growing ‘Chinese military threat’ are part of a systematic build-up to counter lucrative economic relations between China and IT corporations and other leading US economic sectors.

Washington’s projected sanctions on China will be many times more costly to US MNC than its current sanctions on Russia. White House sanctions on Moscow mainly damaged European-based industries and businesses. However sanctions against China will have a massive impact on the US economy.

The White House’s version of the “yellow peril” has no redeeming features for any sector of the US economy. It is the purest expression of militarism run amok. It over-rides any rational economic interest in pursuit of unadulterated geo-political military supremacy. Even on its own terms military supremacy is unattainable as Washington will soon discover, as China deepens its military ties with Russia!

If and when Washington raises the specter of sanctions against China, (with the accompanying gratuitous insults and unsubstantiated accusations of state sponsored “cyber theft”) the Chinese government will respond.

President Xi will take reprisals as he has done before, faced with lesser threats. And he will have the support of the vast majority of Chinese from all regions and classes.

US IT corporations are aware of this potential debacle and have openly and forcefully conveyed their views to Washington. For them, the so-called ‘cyber theft’ is a minor issue compared to the lucrative long term strategic opportunities in working with China.

So far the militarists in the Obama White House have commanded US-China policy. Up to now they have disregarded corporate American interests; whether it is US oil interests in Iraq and Libya, or IT corporations in China.

If Zionist officials in the Executive influence the militarists on Middle East policy, the hard core militarists influence the Zionists in the Far East.

If the US military-driven Middle East policy has been a failure, a similar policy toward China will be catastrophic.

US sanctions and humiliation against China and the consequent falling out of relations will play out in slow motion. Beginning with the precipitous decline of joint ventures and exports, it will lead to lifeless cranes in empty Pacific coast ports and rusting container ships; profit losses and vacant country clubs in Silicon Valley and lost sales for US auto companies. The list is endless but the consequences are clear.

Sep 122015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart


China’s wealthiest classes have secured their recent fortunes through various means, both legal and illegal: These include (1) the privatization of public enterprises; (2) the savage exploitation of cheap labor after destroying workers rights , protections and social welfare legislation; (3) large-scale, long-term corruption of government officials; (4) the often violent state-sponsored land-grabs from towns, villages and farmers and the land transfer to private investors; (5) real estate speculation; (6) changes in state regulatory policies leading to oligopolistic control of markets; (7) large-scale tax evasion, money laundering and offshore transfers of profits and (8) state policies dictating low wage and salaries and repressing workers collective action.

The Communist leadership’s pursuit of an ‘export-oriented’ growth model, based on reducing labor costs to secure competitive advantages in world markets, coincided with the emergence of aggressive Chinese capitalists intent on increasing their profits and concentrating private wealth.

This model of capitalist accumulation required ‘capital-friendly’ labor policies to attract large-scale, long-term investment from US, Japanese and European multinational in association with China’s wealthiest capitalists.

China’s capitalist development was based on a triple alliance of national, foreign and state capitalists, all of whom depended on the widespread, massive corruption of state-party officials.

The Dynamics of Mature Capitalism

As the economy grew, national capital diversified from manufacturing to the FIRE economy, (finance, insurance and real estate). As the economy “liberalized”, overseas and local financial institutions proliferated. Speculative profits attracted major investors as well as millions of middle class ‘fortune seekers’.

China’s growth led to its rise as the primary market for raw materials and the primary producer of imported consumer goods in Latin America, Africa and Asia.

Its rapid growth provoked the US to build-up its bases around China and launch a policy of military confrontation and encirclement as well as regional trade exclusion (the so-called ‘Pivot to Asia’)..

The long, deep recession in the European markets and the financial crisis in the US limited China’s high growth export model.

Meanwhile, second and third generations of skilled Chinese workers became more militant, demanding and winning double digit wage increases. At the same time rural communities staged mass demonstrations and took direct action against corrupt local officials linked to land-grabbing speculators and other attempts to drive them from their homes and farms on behalf of powerful real estate interests.

Wealthy Chinese investors, who diversified into the FIRE economy, created a speculative real estate bubble.

High-ranking party officials, who had enriched themselves through the corrupt takeovers of lucrative state monopolies, caused economic stagnation and deep political disenchantment among the mass of Chinese people.

Worldwide demand for China’s exports declined with the global economic crisis.

Crises and Rectification

Faced with a major loss of political legitimacy, the stagnation of its global export markets, a real estate bubble and stock market volatility, the Chinese government launched a wide-reaching rectification campaignwhich featured:

  1. A massive anti-corruption campaign was launched to restore morality to the government and to win back public respect. Over 250,000 corrupt officials were identified, investigated and tried. Many were imprisoned or dismissed and some were executed.
  2. Reform of wage and income policies was designed to reduce inequalities and encourage domestic consumption. As a result wages rose 10% annually.
  3. The investigation and prosecution of speculators, including investors connected to foreign hedge funds and big oligarchs who had gained gaining billions by “defrauding” retail investors, was initiated by the judiciary.
  4. The Chinese currency, the renminbi, was devalued to promote exports.
  5. The government increased military spending in order to confront the US naval encirclement, including upgrading its of most sophisticated weapons systems, which were on display recently during China’s massive ‘Victory over Japan’ parade.
  6. Two new international investment-financial organizations were set up to counter the US dominated IMF and World Bank and to encourage the participation of regional trade partners as a response to Washington’s Asia Pacific trade arrangements which specifically excluded China.
  7. Greater emphasis is now placed on providing domestic government services, enforcing tax collection, broadening social welfare legislation and social accountability.
  8. Measures are being implemented to prevent the flight of Chinese capital by oligarch families as they flee criminal prosecution for their illicit business activities.

The Response from China’s Wealthy Classes

China’s wealthy classes are resisting these government reforms designed to lessen some of the class imbalances and injustices and to deal with the multiple crises in the society and economy. They have been transferring hundreds of billions of dollars out of the country – essentially disinvesting and de-capitalizing the economy. They have expressed deep concern that the increase in workers’ wages will cut into their profits and that they will lose their lucrative contracts as well as access to compliant, corrupt government officials. They are anxious to hide their source of wealth for fear they will end up in the criminal docket with corrupt partners in the government.

China’s wealthy classes have gone on a buying spree of overseas real estate, fixed income securities, commercial properties, trust products, etc. in an attempt to safely stash their wealth.

Large-scale speculation, the massive flight of capital and canceling of irregular state loans have all contributed to the current volatility in the Chinese economy. China’s wealthy classes create their own self-fulfilling prophecy: their capital flight and speculation creates the very volatile conditions that then serve as the pretext for even more capital flight.

Crisis, Rectification and the Struggle for Power

The source of the current Chinese crisis is found in the behavior and political alliances of the leading classes who benefited from the rapid growth Chinese capitalism.

Progressive capitalist reformers believe that to end the crises requires radical reforms. They advocate: (1) returning the financial market to its original role as an instrument of productive activity; (2) reversing the liberalization of the financial market, including ending speculation by Western hedge funds, re-introducing capital controls, going after tax evaders and punishing massive illegal transfers of profits to offshore havens; and (3) increasing domestic mass consumption and imposing restrictions on  conspicuous elite consumption, via progressive income tax and welfare measures.

The process of rectification has encountered passive resistance from the comprador capitalists as they spirit their wealth out of China. Wealthy Chinese have adopted a post-colonial comprador mentality born out of their tight economic ties with Western capitalists.  They absorbed the neo-liberal ideology; they prize Western education and culture and turn to the US imperial state to protect their wealth – in a dramatic shift of loyalties.

Their own children attend the most expensive private US universities where they are indoctrinated with US elite-centered  political and economic dogma.

They stash their money in high end real estate as an investment and to house their families and children who attend elite US schools..


It is difficult for Chinese political and economic ‘reformers’ to solve the problem of the comprador capitalist, because the ‘reformers’ have engaged in similar behavior and practices over the years.

It is critical for the ‘reformers’ to expose the illicit wealth and go after the compradors with aggressive prosecution. This will be difficult because many reformers have family members among the comprador class, have benefited from the speculative ‘boom’ and have sent their own children abroad. Some may even have their own secret bank accounts overseas – the profits from deals made with big investors.

There is no deep fundamental or class division between compradors and reformers in China. However, the crisis and capital flight is intensifying class polarization and external events are forcing a deeper rethink of how China should confront US militarist policies.

The US military threat is causing problems for Chinese compradors and their economist-propagandists. It is difficult to ‘sell’ the idea of opening wide to Wall Street when the country is staring down the barrels of US guns.

In a strategic sense, this frenzy of Chinese capital flight legitimizes the rectification campaign and weakens compradors’ influence in the economy. Even some of China’s most ardent economic liberals are in flight!

Nevertheless, the reformers’ hesitant steps, their deep ‘faith in the market’ and the massive presence of foreign multi-nationals inside China indicates that real, deep, structural changes are not on the agenda. China’s reformers have started their new version of “The Long March” through many layers of corrupt, flawed and failing institutions . . . Bigger and more consequential changes await the awakening of the working class.

Sep 072015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



Rightwing politics now dominate the globe. Broadly speaking, the Right can be divided into a US-centered rightwing bloc and a variety of anti-US rightwing regimes and social forces.

The US-centered rightwing includes absolutist monarchies, like Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States and Jordan; neoliberal electoral regimes and opposition parties in  the European Union and Latin America and the military dictatorships of North and Sub-Sahara Africa and Thailand. Finally, there are US-armed and trained terrorists operating in Syria, Lebanon and Yemen – which make up a kind of extra-parliamentary US-centered political force.

Israel is a special case of a rightwing regime, allied with the US, which acts more independently to pursue its own colonial priorities and hegemonic ambitions.

The anti-US rightwing includes capitalist China and Russia; the nationalist, Islamist and secular republics of Iran, Syria and Lebanon; and the armed and civilian Islamist mass movements of the Middle East, East and West Africa and South and Southeast Asia.

Leftwing governments and movements, faced with the competing and conflicting rightwing power centers, find themselves having to operate precariously in the interstices of global politics, attempting to play-off one or the other. These include the center-left regimes and movements in Latin America; anti-capitalist opposition parties and trade unions in the EU; nationalist-democratic movements and trade unions in North and South Africa; nationalist and populist movements in South Asia; and a broad array of academic leftists and intellectuals throughout the globe who have little or no direct impact on the direction of world politics. A number of supposedly ‘Left’ regimes have capitulated to the US-EU bloc, namely Syriza in Greece and the Workers Party of Brazil.

In sum, the major conflicts in the world are found between competing capitalist centers; between rising (China and Russia) and established capitalist blocs (US and EU); between financial centers (US-England) and primary export states (Africa, Asia and Latin America); between dominant Judaic/Christian and emerging Islamist states; and between imperialist states and occupied colonized nations. We will explore the nature of each form of right-wing conflict.

The Nature of the Conflicts between the Rightwing Regimes

Despite their common capitalist basis, the conflicts between Rightwing regimes are intense, violent and enduring.

The US-centered Right has annexed former Soviet satellites in Eastern Europe and the Baltic and Balkan states. They have encircled Russia with their military bases, seized control of Ukraine through a violent putsch (color-coded revolution) and invaded Russian allies in the Middle East (Iraq and Syria).

The US has mobilized its EU followers to impose crippling economic sanctions on the Russian state and private enterprises in order to weaken its oligarchical ruling class under President Vladimir Putin, force ‘regime change’ and return Russia to the status of the pillaged vassal state under Boris Yeltsin (1990-2000).

Russia’s capitalist state, dependent on the oil and gas industries and western investments and markets, has responded by building up its military defenses. Faced with a US-imposed economic blockade and the growing militarization of US clients on Russia’s periphery, Moscow is finally developing local industries to substitute for EU and US imports and establishing alternative trading partnerships with capitalist China, India, Islamist Iran and the center-left regimes in Latin America.

The US-centered Right has sought to weaken China by encircling it through expanded military base agreements with Japan, Australia and the Philippines; and by promoting Asian-Pacific trade agreements excluding China. Washington relies on its historic military ties to counter its loss of Asian markets to rising Chinese economic exporters.

China, as the emerging Asian world power, has countered by deepening its trade, investment and financial ties with regional economies. Beijing is cultivating and formalizing trade and investment relations with the EU and Latin American economies. China has increased its defense spending and is constructing a series of offshore military installations to counter US military superiority in the Asia Pacific region.

In both the European and Asian regions of conflict, the struggle is between rival capitalist countries: On one side, there is the declining US-EU-Japanese regimes relying on ever more overt military expansion; while, on the other, China and Russia have turned to trade and economic expansion while fortifying their military defenses.

Both compete to influence the ‘Left’, and the independent Islamist countries by intervening wherever possible in internal conflicts.

The Tactics of the Competing Rightwing Blocs

The US-centered bloc relies on various forms of political-military intervention in the politics of their Chinese, Russian, leftist and Islamic adversaries.

These interventions include: (1) Fomenting ethnic conflicts, e.g. Uighurs and Tibetans in China; Islamists and Chechen terrorists in Russia; Western-oriented liberals in the Islamist countries; and neo-liberals in Latin American countries under leftist regimes.

(2)        Outright military invasions in the Middle East and South Asia against Islamic and nationalist regimes, including the recent invasions and attacks against Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

(3)        Financing and organizing ‘regime change’ via coups and street mobs in Leftist, nationalist and Islamist countries have increased in recent years. US-backed coups have taken place in Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Honduras and Ukraine; street uprisings have been financed and orchestrated by the US and its allies in Iran, Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine, Libya, Brazil, Ecuador and numerous other countries.

(4)        Economic sanctions and exclusive trade pacts are directed against Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Sudan, Gaza, Syria and elsewhere.

The intent of US-centered bloc interventions is to weaken capitalist competitors, undermine Leftist and Islamist economies and convert them into political and economic vassal states.

The anti-US capitalist bloc, headed by Russia and especially China, has relied predominantly on economic aid, trade and investment to counter Western capitalist political intervention. They have arranged large-scale infrastructure loans and financed major trade agreements with less developed countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America and signed oil and gas agreements with the independent Islamic Republic of Iran and with energy producers in Latin America, especially Venezuela.

On the other hand, they have pushed military sales and loans for their weapon systems with Pakistan (South Asia), Egypt (North Africa), and Iran and Syria (Middle East).

The so-called, BRICS and China have organized new financial institutions as a response to the US – dominated IMF and WB.

Capitalist competition may provide some economic options to independent leftist governments, but it does not advance the class struggle. The reason is obvious: Each bloc pursues the capitalist strategy of enhancing market shares, increasing profits and exploiting labor and primary products.

The Dilemmas of the Left in a World of Capital Competition

The Left is not a major player in the current configuration of world power. It has a presence in governments and especially among mass-based opposition movements. The current rivalry among capitalist blocs presents opposition movements with options not possible in a unipolar world dominated by US imperialism.

If the Left chose to ally with a ‘lesser evil’ – Russian or Chinese capitalism would be the likely choice. While Leftists, who sign pacts with capitalists, may end up losing their own identities, when faced with a hostile US-centered bloc the survival of a Leftist regime dictates the need to take risks by establishing such ties.

The best option is to avoid any political alliance while seeking favorable trade and investment agreements to diversify the economy, trade and investment sources and provide ‘negotiating’ leverage .

Leftists under military threat cannot think of self-sufficiency but must concentrate on independence and options.

In today’s almost exclusively capitalist world, the Left has to decide whether it makes sense to speak of progressive or regressive capitalist states or enterprises. They have to decide which is the least regressive or repressive and dangerous economic bloc to deal with. They need to reduce the negative and extract the positive aspects from their negotiations among the competing capitalist blocs.

Criteria for Left Politics

In general terms, the left should choose to work with less militarist and more trade-oriented capitalist states because these are less prone to intervene violently on behalf of their multi-national corporations or embark on ‘regime change’ campaigns against leftist governments, which have been elected to nationalize strategic assets and property.

For this reason Chinese-Russian capitalists are less malignant than those within the US-EU bloc.

Capitalists, willing to invest in minority shares of joint public-private enterprises, are better than those who demand majority shares and managerial control over strategic national assets.

Capitalists, willing to finance local research and development and transfer technology, are preferable to those who monopolize their technology in their ‘imperial headquarters’.

Capitalists, willing to add value and invest in the local ‘chain of production’ make better partners than to those who simply invest in raw material extraction, exporting ‘raw materials’ and importing finished goods. China has been notorious in pursuing this model of naked ‘colonial extraction’, which does not advance the economies of the resource-rich countries. However recently, Latin American, African and Asian governments have started to demand that China invest more heavily in local manufacturing and processing sectors.

Capitalists who invest in infrastructure linking domestic producers to each other through a ‘grid pattern’ bring more long-term economic benefit than those who operate through a ‘spoke infrastructure’, where transport networks are built exclusively to foreign-owned operations in order to bring raw materials directly to export ports.

It is better to work with capitalists who invest in ‘integrated manufacturing complexes’ with high percentage of local suppliers than speculators and capitalists who set up low skill assembly plants using imported parts.

All capitalists seek to maximize market shares and profits by securing tax breaks, finding sources of cheap, docile labor with minimal environmental and workplace protection and easy remittances of profits. The question for the Left is which capitalists are flexible and open to making concessions on these local issues?

Over the past decade, the US capitalist bloc has increased domestic inequalities, cut social expenditures and undermined labor unions and workplace protections.

For their part, over the past two decades, China and Russia have gone through a period of intense concentration of wealth, spiraling inequality, wholesale dismantling of social welfare programs and privatization of resources, banks and factories – all in the course of their headlong transition to capitalism. However, during the last 10 years, Russian workers have benefited from a substantial economic recovery and Chinese workers have secured double-digit wage increases – in contrast to workers in the West with shrinking incomes.

The Left shouldn’t expect to find any expression of labor solidarity from either capitalist bloc but is more likely to negotiate concessions from the East, without the threat of military intervention or ‘regime change’ it confronts from the West.

Clearly there are dangers in dealing with capitalists of any complexion or bloc: US-centered capitalists threaten financial destabilization; Russian oligarchs engaged in pillage and gangster-capitalism in their ascent to state power. Neither should be allowed easy entry and quick exit in any economic relations.


For Left governments, operating in a capitalist world, there are no permanent allies; there are only permanent interests. The distinctions should be very clear.

Foreign market-oriented capitalism, which increases the productive forces, creating value and raising the proportion of wage workers, can help provide the material basis for the state to socialize the economy – if it operates under strict control.

In contrast, militarized capitalism, like that of the US, poses a constant security threat and is a drain on the resources of any leftist government.

In an insecure world, and under the conditions of an unfavorable balance of power, it is best to tactically ally oneself with emerging capitalists, who may have their own reasons for opposing established imperialism. However, the Left must never give up control of their strategic economic sectors.

The Chinese-Russian bloc has its own set of oligarchs and billionaires, exploiters and speculators, but these are not accompanied by imperial state-directed street mobs and saboteurs, militarists and Special Forces.

Left governments should not idealize their relations with tactical allies.  Russia and China have betrayed agreements with Left governments when they capitulated under threats and enticements from the US-EU bloc.

Agreements’, whether with tactical allies or strategic adversaries, should serve to expand and strengthen the social presence, power and influence of the working class in the economy and state. That should be the strategic priority for Left governments as they navigate in these treacherous waters.

Sep 052015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



The single greatest feat of Israel and its overseas missions has not been material success, or the military conquest of millions of unarmed Palestinians, it has been ideological – the widespread acceptance in the US of a doctrine that claims ‘Jews are a superior people’.

Apart from small extremist rightwing sects who exhibit visceral anti-Semitism and denigrate everything Jewish, there are very few academics and politicians willing to question this supremacist doctrine. On the contrary, there is an incurable tendency to advance oneself by accepting and embellishing on it.

For example, in August 2015, US Vice-President Joseph Biden attributed ‘special genius’ to Jews, slavish flattery that embarrassed even New York’s liberal Jewish intellectuals.

Israel’s dominant role in formulating US Middle East policy is largely a product of its success at recruiting, socializing and motivating overseas Jews to act as an organized force to intervene in US politics and push Israel’s agenda.

What motivates American Jews, who have been raised and educated in the US to serve Israel? After all, these are individuals who have prospered, achieved high status and occupy the highest positions of prestige and responsibility. Why would they parrot the policies of Israel and follow the dictates of Israeli leaders (a foreign regime), serving its violent colonial, racist agenda?

What binds a majority of highly educated and privileged Jews to the most rabidly rightwing Israeli regime in history – a relationship they actually celebrate?

What turns comfortable, prosperous American Jews into vindictive bullies, willing and able to blackmail, threaten and punish any dissident voices among their Gentile and Jewish compatriots who have dared to criticize Israel?

What prevents many intelligent, liberal and progressive Jews from openly questioning Israel’s agenda, and especially confronting the role of Zionist zealots who serve as Tel Aviv’s fifth column against the interest of the United States?

There are numerous historical and personal factors that can and should be taken into account to understand this phenomenon.

In this essay I am going to focus on one – the ideology that ‘Jews are a superior people’. The notion that Jews, either through some genetic, biologic, cultural, historical, familial and/or upbringing, have special qualities allowing them to achieve at a uniquely higher level than the ‘inferior’ non-Jews.

We will proceed by sketching the main outline of the Jewish supremacist ideology and then advance our critique.

We will conclude by evaluating the negative consequences of this ideology and propose a democratic alternative.

Jewish Supremacism

Exponents of Jewish Supremacism (JS) frequently cite the prestigious awards, worldly successes and high honors, which, they emphasize, have been disproportionately achieved by Jews.

The argument goes: While Jews represent less than 0.2% of the world population, they have produced 24% of the US Nobel prize winners; over 30% of Ivy League professors and students; and the majority of major US film, stage and TV producers.

They cite the ‘disproportionate number’ of scientists, leading doctors, lawyers and billionaires.

They  cite past geniuses like, Einstein, Freud and Marx .

They point to the founders of the world’s great monotheistic religions – Moses and Abraham.

They lay claim to a unique learning tradition embedded in centuries of Talmudic scholarship.

Jewish supremacists never miss a chance to cite the ‘Jewish background’ of any highly accomplished contemporary public figures in the entertainment, publication, financial fields or any other sectors of life in the US.

Disproportionately great accomplishments by a disproportionate minority has become the mantra for heralding a self-styled ‘meritocratic elite’ … and for justifying its disproportionate wealth, power and privileges – and influence…

Challenging the Myths of Jewish Supremacists

There are serious problems regarding the claims of the Jewish Supremacists.

For centuries Jewish ‘wisdom’ was confined to textual exegesis of religious dogma – texts full of superstition and social control, as well as blind intolerance, and which produced neither reasoned arguments nor contributed to scientific and human advancement.

Jewish scholarship of note occurred among thinkers like Spinoza who revolted against the Jewish ghetto gatekeepers and rejected Jewish dogma.

Notable scientists emerged in the context of working and studying with non-Jews in non-Jewish institutions – the universities and centers of learning in the West. The majority of world-renowned Jewish scholars integrated and contributed to predominantly non-Jewish (Moslem and Christian) and secular institutions of higher learning.

Historically, highly talented individuals of Jewish origin succeeded by renouncing the constraints of everyday Jewish life, rabbinical overseers and Jewish institutions. Most contemporary prestigious scientists, including the frequently cited Nobel Prize winners, have little or nothing to do with Judaism! And their contributions have everything to do with the highly secular, integrated culture in which they prospered intellectually – despite expressions of crude anti-Semitism in the larger society.

Secondly, Jewish Supremacists persist in claiming ‘racial credit’ for the achievements of  individuals who have publicly renounced, denounced and distanced themselves from Judaism and have dismissed any notion of Israel as their spiritual homeland. Their universal prestige has prevented them from being labeled, apostate or ‘self-hating’. Albert Einstein, often cited by the Supremacists as the supreme example of ‘Jewish genius’, denounced Israel’s war crimes and showed disdain for any tribal identity. In their era, Marx and Trotsky, like the vast majority of emancipated European Jews, given the chance, became engaged in universalistic organizations, attacking the entire notion that Jews were a ‘special people’ chosen by divine authority (or by the latter-day Zionists).

Thirdly, Supremacists compile a very selective list of virtuous Jews, while omitting areas of life and activity where Jews have disproportionately played a negative and destructive role.

After all is it Jewish ‘genius’ that makes Israel a leading exporter of arms, high tech  intrusive spy systems and sends military and paramilitary advisers and torturers to work with death squad regimes in Africa and Latin America?

Among the winners of the Nobel Peace Prize are three Israeli Prime Ministers who waged wars of ethnic cleansing against millions of Palestinians and expanded racist ‘Jews only’ settlements throughout the occupied Palestinian territories. These include Menachem Begin (notorious career bomber and terrorist), Yitzhak Rabin (a militarist who was assassinated by an even more racist Jewish terrorist) and Shimon Peres. Among Jewish American Nobel ‘Peaceniks’ is Henry Kissinger who oversaw the brutal and illegal US war in Indo-China causing 4 million Vietnamese deaths; who wrote the ‘template for regime change’ by overthrowing the democratically elected government of Chilean President Allende and condemned Chile to decades of police state terror; and who supported Indonesia’s destruction of East Timor!

In other words, these Nobel recipients, who Supremacists cite as ‘examples of Jewish Supremacy’, have sown terror and injustice on countless captive peoples and nations – giving the Nobel Peace Prize a dubious distinction.

Among the greatest billion dollar swindlers in recent US history, we d find a disproportionate percentage of American Jews – curiously not mentioned by the Supremacists in their usual litany: Bernard Madoff pillaged over $50 billion from his clients, Ivan Boesky, Michael Milken and Marc Rich are well-known names adding the distinction of ‘Jewish genius’ to a list of financial mega-felons.

Among the less respectable notables whose material successes have been tarnished by personal weaknesses – we have the billionaire and pedophile pimp, Jeffry Epstein; IMF President, rapist and debaucher Dominic Strauss Kahn, entrepreneur and ‘nudist’ Dov Charney, New York Governor and ‘repeat customer’ Elliot Spitzer, Congressman and exhibitionist Anthony Weiner and the fun-loving sports impresario who brought down FIFA, the piratical Chuck Blazer. Curiously, none of these extraordinarily successful notables have been cited as examples of Jewish Supremacy.

As we contemplate the millions of war refugees driven from the Near East and North Africa, we should credit the role of US neo-liberal and neo-conservative ideologues and policymakers –a disproportionate percentage of whom are Jews. Millions of Chilean workers suffered as Milton Friedman and his Chicago Boys ‘advised’ Chilean Dictator Augusto Pinochet on dismantling the welfare state (even if it required the murder of trade unionists!). Ayn Rand (Alyssa Rosenbaum) and her fanatical free market epigones have savaged all progressive social legislation and turned the most retrograde forms of selfishness into a religion of ‘superiority’!

The disastrous US war against Iraq was largely organized, promoted and justified by a disproportionate percentage of US Jews (Zionists), including leading policymakers in the Bush and Obama administration – Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith, Elliott Abrams, Dennis Ross, Martin Indyk, David Frum, Shulsky, Levey, Cohen, Rahm Emanuel etc… They continue to push for war against Iran and should be seen as the ‘godfathers’ of the tragedies of Iraq, Syria and Libya where millions have fled.

The biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression was largely due to the financial policies of Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan. The trillion-dollar bailout of Wall Street by Ben Shalom Bernacke and Stanley Fischer, while Janet Yellen ignored the plight of millions of Americans who lost their homes because of mortgage foreclosures. In sum, Jewish Supremacists should proudly take credit for the American Jews who have been disproportionately responsible for the largest economic and foreign policy failures of the contemporary period – including the horrific suffering these have entailed!

Back in the more normal world of crime, Russian-Jewish mobsters dominate or share supremacy with the Italian Mafia in New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Miami and scores of cities in between. They display their unique genius at extortion and murder – knowing they can always find safe haven in the ‘Promised Land’!

On the cultural front, the finest Jewish writers, artists, musicians, scientists have emerged outside of Israel. A few may have immigrated to the Jewish state, but many other intellectuals and artists of note have chosen to leave Israel, repelled by the racist, intolerant and repressive apartheid state and society promoted by Jewish Supremacists.


The record provides no historical basis for the claims of Jewish Supremacists:

What has been cited as the disproportionate ‘Jewish genius’ turns out to be a two-edged sword – demonstrating the best and the worst.

Claiming a monopoly on high academic achievement must be expanded to owning up to the Jewish authors of the worst financial and foreign policy disasters – they too are ‘high achievers’.

Donations from financial billionaires, all ‘geniuses’, have financed the war crimes of the Israeli state and made possible the expansion of violent Jewish settlers throughout occupied Palestine – spreading misery and displacement for millions.

In fairness, the most notorious Jewish swindler in contemporary America was even-handed: ‘Bernie’ Madoff swindled Jews and Goys, Hollywood moguls and New York philanthropists – he wasn’t picky about who he fleeced.

The latest fashion among Jewish Supremacist ‘geneticists’ is to extoll the discovery of uniquely special ‘genes’ predisposing Jews to experience the ‘holocaust’ and even inherit the experience of suffering from long dead ancestors. Such ‘scientists’ should be careful. As Jazz artist and essayist, Gilad Altzmon wryly notes, ‘They will put the anti-Semites out of business’.

Ultimately, Jews, who have assimilated into the greater society or not, who inter-marry and who do not, are all products of the social system in which they live and (like everyone else) they are the makers of the roles they decide to play within it.

In the past, a uniquely disproportional percentage of Jews chose to fight for universal humanist values – rejecting the notion of a chosen people.

Today a disproportionate percentage of educated Jews have chosen to embrace an ‘ethno-religious’ Supremacist dogma, which binds them to an apartheid, militarist state and ideology ready to drag the world into a global war.

Never forget! Racialist supremacist doctrines led Germany down the blind ally of totalitarianism and world war, in which scores of millions perished.

Jews, especially young Jews, are increasingly repelled by Israel’s crimes against humanity. The next step for them (and for us) is to criticize, demystify and stand up to the toxic supremacist ideology linking the powerful domestic Zionist power configuration and its political clones with Israel.

The root problem is not genetic, it is collective political dementia: a demented ideology that claims a chosen elite can forever dominate and exploit the majority of American people. The time will come when the accumulated disasters will force the Americans people to push back, unmasking the elite and rejecting its supremacist doctrines. Let us hope that they will act with passion guided by reason.

Aug 312015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart

Colombian soldiers carry the equipment of one of ten soldiers killed by the FARC rebels, in the rural area of Buenos Aires, department of Cauca, Colombia, on April 15, 2015. (AFP photo)

Colombian soldiers carry the equipment of one of ten soldiers killed by the FARC rebels, in the rural area of Buenos Aires, department of Cauca, Colombia, on April 15, 2015. (AFP photo)


Colombia has received more US military aid — over $6 billion dollars in the past decade — than any country in the Western Hemisphere. For its part, Colombia allowed the Pentagon to build seven military bases, more than all the other countries in the region combined. There are over 2,000 US military officers and private US ‘mercenary’ contractors engaged in military activities in Colombia — more than any other country in Latin America.

During the decade-long (2001-2010) regime of President Alvaro Uribe, (a drug trafficker and death squad jefe in his own right), more than one-thousand trade union leaders and activists were murdered — over one hundred a year.

Nevertheless, the ‘Colombian killing field’ regime under Uribe was described in glowing terms by all the major respectable Anglo-American newspapers, including the Financial Times,  New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post for having brought “stability and peace” (of the graveyard) to the country and making Colombia “safe for investors”.

Eventually Uribe’s excesses, his policy of ‘peace through terror’ policies frightened and appalled many Colombians and (most important for the oligarchs) he failed to defeat the armed insurgency. When the regime’s new extractive export growth strategy called for massive expansion of foreign investment in guerrilla-controlled mineral and oil-rich regions  tactics and key political leaders had to change.

After two terms in office, President Uribe’s former Defense Minister Juan Santos was elected on the promise of renewed peace negotiations with the principal guerrilla group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC.

President Santos’ Peace Negotiations and the Killing Fields

Under President Santos, Colombia still retains the title as the most dangerous country in the world for trade union leaders and human rights activists. During his first 5 years in office, from 2011 to April 2015, more than 105 trade unionists have been murdered; 596 have been injured in attacks and 1,337 received death threats. Over half of the killings, which are officially labeled ‘unattributed’, have clearly been committed by the paramilitary hitmen — ‘sicarios’, and others are categorized as ‘false positives’, where the military claims civilian deaths result from the ‘cross-fire of combat operations’. Few arrests have ever been made in a country where assassins enjoy immunity. Over 80% of trade union leader assassinations are attributed to paramilitary-military-police while 6% are blamed on the guerrillas. In the case of the guerrillas, most of the ‘victims’ are not popularly elected trade unionists but agents, appointed by the employers and government, with links to the paramilitary gangs, who identify and purge militant workers and have nothing to do with the defense of  workers rights.

There are a minority of cases of guerrilla units committing human rights violations. These are investigated and the guilty are punished by the national leaders — a far cry from Bogota’s policy. A recent case, which took place in early August, led to severe internal sanctioning of a FARC unit.

The drop in the ‘number’ of labor leaders murdered, from an average of 100 a year under Uribe to 25 a year under Santos, is due to the precipitous decline in the number of trade unionists overall — thanks to a decade of slaughter under Uribe. In other words, there may be fewer union leaders murdered under President Santos, but overall the proportion of leaders assassinated remains essentially the same — and the life expectancy for a Colombian labor leader is the lowest in the hemisphere!

What has changed under Santos is the shift away from slaughtering a dwindling number of union leaders, to killing and jailing human rights and social movement activists.

In 2014, 35 activists were murdered. During the first half of 2015, the death toll has almost doubled with 69 social movement and human rights activists killed.

The Patriotic March is the major Colombian umbrella movement, bringing together over 100 social organizations, including the country’s major indigenous groups, Afro-Colombians, regional peasant  and human rights groups. More than 9,000 Patriotic March activists have been arrested and 40 have been killed during Santos reign of terror.

Peace Negotiations and Cross Border Aggression

Santos’ peace negotiations with the main guerrilla groups, as well as the FARC’s unilateral ceasefire, has allowed the Colombian military and its paramilitary allies to step up their cross-border drug and contraband smuggling and terrorist incursions into Venezuela.

In mid-August, a Colombian paramilitary squad entered Venezuela and wounded 3 Venezuelan soldiers who had been part of a team combating large-scale contraband and arms smuggling across the Colombian border. Cross-border smuggling has a double purpose: It creates insecurity and shortages in Venezuela inciting opposition to the government while earning huge profits for paramilitary leaders who re-sell the subsidized Venezuelan goods (food, medicine and gasoline) at a huge mark-up in Colombia.

Cross-border paramilitary-smuggling operations have vastly increased under President Santos. While the regime claims to be negotiating a peace accord with the FARC in Havana, Venezuelan security is under threat.

Large-scale, widespread smuggling gangs from Colombia enjoy impunity, intelligence and encouragement from the Colombian government and its US Special Forces ‘advisers’ intent on ‘regime change’ in Caracas. And with the FARC honoring its unilateral ceasefire, the paramilitaries no longer have to contend with attacks from the guerrillas.

Peace Negotiations and Extractive Capital

President Santos’ economic policies are attracting large flows of foreign investment into Colombia’s mining and energy sector. The oil and mineral-rich regions are heavily influenced by the armed guerrillas. Furthermore, there is a tradition of militant trade unionism among miners and oil workers. In order to make these regions safe and extremely profitable for multinational oil and mining companies, Santos has adopted a ‘two-pronged’ approach. He negotiates ceasefires and disarmament with the two insurgent movements (the FARC and the ELN- the National Liberation Army) in Havana, while stepping up repression and terror against union leaders in the oil and mining sectors.

During the Santos’ regime the greatest number of assassinated trade union leaders have come from the mining and energy sector (25.4%), followed by the manufacturing (19.3%), education (18%) and agriculture (12.7%). From 2014 to mid 2015, 90% of paramilitary and military assaults against civilians have targeted union leaders and activists (208 out of 229).

In other words, Santos’ strategy has been designed to neutralize the guerrillas via bogus peace negotiations in Havana in order to concentrate state repression against mass popular movement activists and trade unionists, as they struggle to secure a fairer share of Colombia’s immense natural wealth which is being pillaged by the gigantic foreign mining and energy companies and their local oligarch partners.

Under Santos, assassinations and attacks have become more selective than the indiscriminate mass killings that characterized his predecessor’s regime. The scorched earth policies which drove 4 million peasants and small farmers from their lands have been replaced by the targeted killing and assault of trade unionists active in strategic economic sectors.

Cross border incursions by the Colombian military harassing Venezuela border patrols have been replaced by proxy criminal and paramilitary gangs of smugglers operating with the blessing of Bogota and Washington.

Santos’ dual strategy allows him to pose as a ‘peacemaker’ in Havana and a ‘hatchet-man’ for foreign investors in Colombia’s mineral-rich regions.

The assassinations of two dozen trade unionists per year, the murders of six dozen human rights activists in the first 6 months of 2015, and the 9,000 social movement activists rotting in  Colombia’s prisons is not reported in the international mass media, or at international forums, and regional meetings. Meanwhile, the press concentrates on the ‘peace negotiations’ between the FARC and President Santos in Havana — as if nothing were happening on the ground in Colombia.


The new policies pursued by President Santos, which combine peace negotiations with Colombian guerrilla movements in Havana and violent repression against mass social movements and labor leaders at home; friendly overtures to Cuba and cross-border smuggling and destabilization campaigns against Venezuela, do not bode well for future regional peace or stability.

President Santos’ two-face policies mirror those of the Obama regime. While Obama pursues negotiation with Iran, he wages proxy wars against Iran’s allies in Yemen, Syria and Lebanon. While, Obama celebrates the re-establishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba, he intensifies a policy of sabotage and ‘regime change’ with Cuba’s close ally in Venezuela.

The parallels between Santos and Obama’s policies reflect their common ideology and their political strategy of talking peace while waging war.

This two track policy brings up the fundamental strategic question: how durable and reliable are peace gestures in the midst of proxy wars and mass killing.

With regard to Colombia one thing is certain: The signing of a “peace agreement” between the Santos regime and the FARC will not end the killing of trade unionists and human rights activists; it will not free the thousands of social movement activists in Colombian prisons.  By the same token, Obama’s agreement with Iran has not reduced US military intervention in the Middle East and South Asia.

Imperial agreements are temporary expedients. They represent a brief prelude to new and more virulent aggression against independent nations and emerging national and class-based mass movements.

Aug 262015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



Eight months will have passed since the election of Syriza on January 25 up to the snap elections in September. During that time Syriza’s leaders play-acted their ‘opposition to austerity’ and then knelt down in submission to the ‘Troika’.

The contrast between January and now is dramatic: Syriza’s leader, Prime Minister Alexi Tsipras, aroused joy and great hope among the Greek voters with his promises to end Greece’s subjugation to the European oligarchs (the “Troika”) but now convokes snap elections exploiting the pervasive fear and misery among the population. Greeks confront a future of even greater impoverishment and despair with an entire generation bound up and delivered to forty years of debt slavery and colonial subjugation by their elected Syriza leaders.

In January, Syriza swept into office on its promise of ‘change’ without specifics. ‘Change’ turned out to be an empty slogan. Changes did take place: Changes for the worse! Since his election, Tsipras emptied the Greek Treasury to pay the EU bankers; stripped pension and municipal funds to meet IMF obligations and, worse yet, he allowed the flight of over 40 billion Euros to be transferred from Greek banks to overseas accounts – essentially de-capitalizing the financial system.

The linguistic perversion of “change” was not the worst of Syriza’s contribution to the corruption and discredit of the European left. Its slavish pillage of the economy shocked and confused the impoverished Greek majority. The voters had expected Syriza and its radical phrasemongers to do the opposite – to save the national economy and lead the country!

For a while Tsipras’s submission and betrayal was disguised by his theatrical poses of the ‘tough negotiator’ with the German bankers. His perpetual boyish grin, frozen on his face, as if to reassure his followers: “You can trust me. I will make sure Madame Merkel and company do not shove another bristly cucumber up your backsides!”  Tsipras feigned resistance before the bankers, setting a stylistic template for other Syriza legislators, who likewise ‘protested and submitted’. They too came to believe that ‘their efforts’ (and not their results) deserved public approval!

Between February and April, Tsipras endured stern lectures from his overlords in the EU, returning to Greece with his silly grin and empty pockets.

Tsipras did everything possible to distract, to entertain, to bluster and deceive Syriza’s befuddled supporters.

Tsipras resorted to radical rhetoric, empty gestures and verbal defiance.

His emotional outburst were just ‘hollow farts’ (kfes pourdes in demotic Greek) in the poetic language of an insightful, indignant grandmother whose pension had been cut by 40%!

Syriza bent and broke before the predictable intransigence of their German overlords and their 28 rubber-stamping, vassal states. Syriza got nothing and worse. The more they talked, the less they achieved…

Tsipras broke the Greek financial system and then declared defeat, but not before mounting one more grand electoral fraud. Syriza announced a popular ‘referendum’ on the EU dictates and 61% of the Greek voters said ‘no’ to the EU demands. But Tsipras immediately said yes!

Tsipras accepted the complete sell-off –-‘privatization’– of all the strategic, lucrative, major and minor public enterprises, properties and sources of Greek national wealth.

There were no popular uprisings in the street on Tsipras’ capitulation: just a little ‘tempest in the teapot’ in the Greek Parliament when the “Left Platform” voted no, showed their backsides to their now ex-leader, defected and formed a new party - Popular Unity. With no mass organization and not supporting mass action, the ‘Left Platform’ just rose up on their hind legs . . . to bray out a manifesto calling for ‘popular unity’ . . . within the confines of the Parliamentary cesspool of knaves and scoundrels. Meanwhile, Syntagma (Constitution) Square was full of pigeons and homeless vagabonds…  Is this another hollow fart?

These armchair rebels, who sat in the Cabinet and slavishly followed Tsipras for seven months, engaging in sterile internal party debates and giving interviews to the dwindling bands of leftist academic tourists, while ignoring the street fighting youth, will face a new election in one month. They have the insurmountable task of convincing a cowed, confused and fearful electorate that they should unite, organize and reject Tsipras, Syriza and  infinite regression.

Tsipras, for his part, will take the EU ‘bailout funds’, pay the banks and finance his own campaign. He will get free publicity from the domestic and foreign press (the Financial Times editorializes in praise of ‘his courage and good sense’) and employ an army of campaign workers with bail-out funds to obliterate the ‘Left Platform’. He will thus gain support from the Greek oligarchs and having adopted the platform of the right opposition, he has little to fear electorally from the boring old kleptocrats of Pasok and New Democracy, who cannot match his giveaways, theatrics and demagogy at the ballot box.

Disillusion and direct action—strikes, marches and fiery barricades — will set in after the September elections when Tsipras has further slashed pensions and shredded labor rights, when privatizations lead to massive layoffs at the docks, airports, power companies and oil refineries. Tsipras’ call for rapid elections was designed to secure votes from a shocked electorate before the pain of his massive sell-out is fully felt.

With time, there will be tempestuous protests, but the EU will have pillaged Greece of its present and future wealth. Tsipras’ electoral support will dwindle and tear gas will once again perfume the streets of Athens. Then, the old political whores and kleptocrats from the Right will trot out to center stage once more. And who knows, Tsipras may even form a new ‘inclusive’ coalition regime with the sluts of the right. Bankers, oligarchs and kleptocrats are not fussy about their bed-partners, even played-out traitors with boyish grins are worth a ‘romp in the sack’ if it gets them back in power…


The financial press and the mass media concocted an image of Syriza as “far left” or “hard left”. In fact, Syriza did everything possible to destroy the hopes of the majority of downwardly mobile Greeks desperate for a reversal of the shock austerity policies imposed by the EU.

From the very first day in office, Syriza leaders embraced the oligarchical structure of the EU, retaining the Euro currency and recognizing the illicit foreign debt.

Caged from the outset, Syriza just made a big racket, rattling the bars and pleading for a long leash and more time.

The trained eyes of the EU autocrats recognized Syriza leaders as captives, given to inconsequential political ejaculations and ‘outraged protestations’. They made no concessions: Indeed bankers decided to really punish the Greek voters for electing the clowns…

The Germans immediately sized Tsipras up as a marshmallow leftist - organically incapable of breaking out of the EU cage, of renouncing the Euro and the debt. With their long historical experience, Euro-imperialists know how to treat ‘socialist’ and ‘nationalist’ subjects, who negotiate on bended knee: “The more you kick them, the less they ask

Tsipras begged for money to pay the European and US banks! He agreed to sell twenty-nine Greek airports to German capitalists in order to pay the German bankers.

In other words, Syriza and Tsipras have impoverished millions of Greeks and sold off all of Greece’s lucrative enterprises so that German, French and English holders of Greek bonds will not miss a single interest payment!

Was Tsipras just posing as a Prime Minister while serving as a pimp for gang rape?

According to the latest polls, the Greek people will re-elect him! The victims have gone mad! . . . God bless Greece — the cradle of democracy has become a roiling nest of vipers!

Aug 232015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



2015 has become a year of living dangerously.

Wars are spreading across the globe. Wars are escalating as new countries are bombed and the old are ravaged with ever greater intensity.

Countries, where relatively peaceful changes had taken place through recent elections, are now on the verge of civil wars.

These are wars without victors, but plenty of losers; wars that don’t end; wars where imperial occupations are faced with prolonged resistance.

There are never-ending torrents of war refugees flooding across borders. Desperate people are detained, degraded and criminalized for being the survivors and victims of imperial invasions.

Now major nuclear powers face off in Europe and Asia: NATO versus Russia, US-Japan versus China. Will these streams of blood and wars converge into one radiated wilderness drained of its precious life blood?

Living Dangerously: The Rising Tide of Violent Conflicts

There is no question that wars and military threats have replaced diplomacy, negotiations and democratic elections as the principal means of resolving political conflicts. Throughout the present year (2015) wars have spread across borders and escalated in intensity.

The NATO allies, US, Turkey and the EU have openly attacked Syria with air strikes and ground troops. There are plans to occupy the northern sector of that ravaged country, creating what the Erdogan regime dubs a ‘buffer zone’ cleansed of its people and villages.

Under the pretext of ‘fighting ISIS’, the Turkish government is bombing Kurds (civilians and resistance fighters) and their Syrian allies. On Syria’s southern border, US Special Forces have accelerated and expanded operations from their bases in Jordan on behalf of the mercenary terrorists – funded by the monarchist Gulf States.

Over 4 million Syrians have fled their homes as refugees and over 200,000 have been killed since the US-EU-Turkey-Saudi-sponsored war against the secular Syrian government was launched four years ago.

Dozens of terrorist, mercenary and sectarian groups have carved up Syria into rival fiefdoms, pillaged its economic and cultural resources and reduced the economy by over ninety percent.

The US-EU-Turkish military intervention extends the war into Iraq, Lebanon and…. Turkey – attacking secular governments, ethnic minority groups and secular civil society.

The feudal, monarchist Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have invaded Yemen with tanks, launching air strikes against a country without any air defenses. Major cities and towns are devastated. Saudi ground troops and armored carriers are killing and wounding thousands – mostly civilians. The brutal Saudi air and sea blockade of Yemen’s ports have led to a humanitarian crisis, as ten million Yemenis face starvation deliberately imposed by a grotesque and obscenely rich monarchy.

The Yemeni resistance fighters, driven out of the major cities, are preparing for prolonged guerrilla warfare against the Saudi monsters and their puppets. Their resistance has already spread across the frontiers of the absolutist Saudi dictatorship.

The brutal Israeli occupation troops, in collaboration with armed ‘settler’ colonists, have accelerated their violent seizure of Palestinian lands.  They have stepped up the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, Bedouins, Druze and Christian inhabitants replacing their communities with racist ‘Jews-only’ colonial settlements.

Daily assaults against the huge ‘concentration camps’ of Gaza accompany an armed blockade of land, air and water, preventing the reconstruction of the tens of thousands of homes, schools, hospital, factories and infrastructure, destroyed by last year’s Israeli blitzkrieg.

Israel’s continued annexation and ethnic cleansing of Palestinian territory precludes any diplomatic process; colonial wars have been and continue to be Israel’s policy of choice in dealing with its Arab neighbors and captive populations.

Africa’s wars, resulting from earlier US-EU interventions, continue to ravage-the Continent. Somalia, Sudan, Kenya, Libya are riven by bloody conflicts between US-EU backed regimes and armed Islamic and nationalist resistance movements.

Throughout North and Sub-Sahara Africa, US-EU backed regimes have provoked armed upheavals in Libya, Nigeria (Boko Harem), Egypt (ISIS, Moslem Brotherhood et al), Chad, Niger, South Sudan, Somalia and elsewhere.

Imperial client Egyptian and Ethiopian dictators rule with iron fists – financed and armed by their EU and US sponsors.

Imperial wars rage throughout the Middle East and South Asia. Hundreds of experienced Baathist Iraqi military officers, who had been expelled or jailed and tortured by the US Occupation army, have now made common cause with Islamist fighters to form ISIS and effectively occupy a third of Iraq and a strategic swath of Syria.

There are daily bombings in Baghdad undermining its US client. Strategic advances by ISIS are forcing the US to resume and escalate its direct combat role

The US-Baghdad retreat and the defeat of the US-trained Iraqi military in the face of the Baathist-Islamist offensive is the opening salvo of a long-term, large-scale war in Iraq and Syria.  The Turkish air-war against the Kurds in Iraq will escalate the war in Northern Iraq and extend it into southeast Turkey.

Closer to ‘home’, the EU-US-backed coup (‘regime change’) in Kiev and the attempt to impose dictatorial-pro-West oligarchic rule in Ukraine have detonated a prolonged civil-national war devastating the country and pitting NATO’s proxies against Russian-backed allies in the Donbas.

US, England, Poland and other NATO powers are deeply committed to pushing war right up to Russia’s borders.

There is a new Cold War, with the imposition of wide-ranging US-EU economic sanctions against Russia and the organizing of major NATO military exercises on Russia’s doorsteps. It is no surprise that these provocations are met with a major counter-response – the Russian military build-up. The NATO power grab in Ukraine, which first led to a local ethnic war, now escalates to a global confrontation and may move toward a nuclear confrontation as Russia absorbs hundreds of thousands of refugees from the slaughter in Ukraine.

The US puppet regime in Afghanistan has faced a major advance of the Taliban in all regions, including the capital, Kabul.

The Afghan war is intensifying and the US-backed Kabul regime is in retreat. US troops can scarcely advance beyond their bunkers.

As the Taliban military advances, its leaders demand total surrender of the Kabul puppets and the withdrawal of US troops. The US response will be a prolonged escalation of war.

Pakistan, bristling with US arms, faces a major conflict along its borders with India and permanent war in its semi-autonomous Northwest frontier states with Islamist and ethnic Pashtu guerrilla movements backed by mass regional political parties. These parties exercise de facto control over the Northwest region providing sanctuary and arms for Taliban militants operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Armed ethno-religious conflicts persist in western China, Myanmar and northern India. There are large-scale popular resistance movements in the militant northeast Thailand opposed to the current military-monarchist dictatorship in Bangkok.

In the 21st century, in South and Southeast Asia, as in the rest of the world, war and armed conflicts have become central in resolving ethnic, social, tribal and regional differences with central states: diplomacy and democratic elections have been rendered obsolete and inefficient.

Latin America – On the Verge

Burgeoning violent extra-parliamentary right-wing movements, intent on overthrowing or ‘impeaching’ elected center-left Latin American governments face major confrontations with the state and its mass supporters.

In Ecuador, Venezuela and Brazil, US-backed opposition groups are engaged in violent demonstrations, directed toward ousting the elected regimes. In the case of Ecuador, ‘popular sectors’, including some indigenous leaders and sectors of the trade union movement, have called for an ‘uprising’ to oust President Correa. They seem oblivious of the fact that the hard-right oligarchs who now control key offices in the three principal cities (Guayaquil, Quito and Cuenca) will be the real beneficiaries of their ‘uprisings’.

The resurgent Right envisions violent ‘regime change’ as the first step toward ‘wiping the slate clean’ of a decade of social reforms, independent regional organizations and independent foreign policies.

Civil war’ may be too strong a word for the situation in Latin America at this time – but this is the direction which the US-backed opposition is heading. Faced with the mess and difficulty of dislodging incumbent regimes via elections, the US and its local proxies have opted for the choreography of street violence, sabotage, martial law and coups – to be followed by sanitized elections – with US-vetted candidates.

War and violence run rampant through Mexico and most of Central America. A US-backed military coup ousted the popularly elected, independent President Zelaya in Honduras. The ensuing US-proxy regime has murdered and jailed hundreds of pro-democracy dissidents and driven thousands to flee the violence.

The 1990’s US-brokered ‘Peace Accords’ in El Salvador and Guatemala effectively blocked any agrarian reform and income redistribution that might have led to the rebuilding of their civil societies. This has led to over two decades of mass disaffection, the rise of armed ‘gangs’ numbering over 100,000 members and an average of six to ten thousand homicides a year with El Salvador becoming the ‘murder capital of the hemisphere’ on a per capita basis. The annual murder toll under the US-brokered ‘Peace Accords’ now exceeds those killed each year during the civil war.

The real ‘carnage capital’ of the hemisphere is Mexico. Over 100,000 people have been murdered during the decade-long, US-backed ‘war on drugs’ – a war which has become a state-sponsored war on the Mexican people.

The internal war has allowed the Mexican government to privatize and sell the crown jewels of the national economy – the petroleum industry. While thousands of Mexicans are terrorized and slaughtered, the US and EU oil companies are curiously shielded from the drug lords. The same Mexican government, its police, officials and military, who collaborate with the drug lords in dividing up the billions of drug dollars, protect foreign oil companies and their executives. After all, narco-dollars are laundered by banks in New York, Miami, Los Angeles and London to help fuel the speculation!

From Regional to Nuclear Wars

Regional and local wars spread under the shadow of a looming world war. The US moves its arms, planes, bases and operations to the Russian and Chinese borders.

Never have so many US troops and war planes been placed in so many strategic locations, often less than an hour drive from major Russian cities.

Not even during the height of the Cold War, did the US impose so many economic sanctions against Russian enterprises.

In Asia, Washington is organizing major trade, military and diplomatic treaties designed to exclude and undermine China’s growth as a trade competitor. It is engaged in provocative activities comparable to the boycott and blockade of Japan which led to the Second World War in Asia.

Open ‘warfare by proxy’ in Ukraine is perhaps the first salvo of the Third World War in Europe.  The US-EU-sponsored coup in Kiev has led to the annexation of Western Ukraine. In response to the threat of violence toward the ethnic Russian majority in Crimea and the loss of its strategic naval base on the Black Sea, Russia annexed Crimea.

In the lead-up to the Second World War, Germany annexed Austria. In a similar manner the US-EU installed a puppet regime in Kiev by violent putsch as its own initial steps toward major power grabs in Central Asia. The military build-up includes the placement of major, forward offensive military bases in Poland.

Warsaw’s newly elected hard-right regime of President Andrzej Duda has demanded that Poland become NATO’s central military base of operation and the front line in a war against Russia.

Wars and More Wars and the Never-ending Torrents of Refugees

The US and EU imperial wars have devastated the lives and livelihoods of scores of millions of people in South Asia, North and Sub-Sahara Africa, Central America, Mexico, the Balkans and now Ukraine.

Four million Syrian refugees have joined millions of Afghan, Pakistani, Iraqi, Yemeni, Somali, Libyan, Palestinian and Sudanese refugees fleeing US-EU bombs, drones and proxy mercenaries ravaging their countries.

Millions of war refugees escape toward safety in Western Europe, joining the millions of economic refugees who have fled free market destitution in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Poland, the Balkans and other EU satellites.

Panic among the civilian population of Western Europe sets in as hundreds of thousands cross the Mediterranean, the Aegean and the Balkans.

Droves of refugees perish each day. Tens of thousands crowd detention centers. Local labor markets are saturated. Social services are overwhelmed.

The US builds walls and detention camps for the millions trying to escape the harsh consequences of imperial-centered free markets in Mexico, narco-terror and the fraudulent ‘peace accord’-induced violence in Central America.

As Western wars advance, the desperate refugees multiply. The poor and destitute clamber at the gates of the imperial heartland crying: ‘Your bombs and your destruction of our homelands have driven us here, now you must deal with us in your homeland’.

Fomenting class war between the refugees and ‘natives’ of the imperial West – may not be on the agenda . . . for now, but the future for ‘civil’ society in Europe and the US is bleak.

Meanwhile, more and even bigger wars are on the horizon and additional millions of civilians will be uprooted and face the choice of starving, fleeing with their families or fighting the empire. The ranks of seasoned and infuriated resistance fighters are swelling in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Ukraine and elsewhere.

The US and EU are becoming armed fortresses. US police deal with the marginalized citizenry as an occupying army, assaulting African-Americans, immigrants and dissidents – while looting poor communities . . . and protecting the rich.


War is everywhere and expanding: No continent or region, big or small, is free from the contagion of war.

Imperial wars have spawn local wars . . . igniting mass flights in a never-ending cycle.  There are no real diplomatic success stories! There are no enduring, viable peace accords!

Some pundits may protest this analysis: They point to the recent US – Cuba rapprochement as a ‘success’.  They conveniently forget that the US is still subverting Cuba’s biggest trading partner, Venezuela; that Washington’s major regional proxies are demanding regime change among Cuba’s allies in Ecuador, Brazil and Bolivia and that Washington is increasingly threatening Cuba’s alternative markets in Russia and China. The vision of the US flag flapping in the breeze outside its embassy in Havana does little to cover Washington’s iron fist threatening Cuba’s allies.

Others cite the US – Iran peace accord as a major ‘success’.  They ignore that the US is backing the bloody Saudi invasion of neighboring Yemen and the massacre of Shiite communities; that the US has provided Israel with a road map detailing Iran’s entire defense system and that the US and EU are bombing Iran’s Syrian ally without mercy.

As for the US – Cuba and Iranian agreements – are they enduring and strategic or just tactical imperial moves preparing for even greater assaults?

The war epidemic is not receding.

War refugees are still fleeing; they have no homes or communities left.

Disorder and destruction are increasing, not decreasing; there is no rebuilding the shattered societies, not in Gaza, not in Fallujah, not in the Donbas, not in Guerrero, not in Aleppo.

Europe feels the tremors of a major conflagration.

Americans still believe that the two oceans will protect them. They are told that placing NATO missiles on Russia’s borders and stationing warships off China’s shores and building electrified walls and laying barbed wire along the Rio Grande will protect them. Such is their faith in their political leaders and propagandists.

What a packet of lies! Inter-continental missiles can ‘rain down’ on New York, Washington and Los Angeles.

It is time to wake up!

It is time to stop the US – EU headlong race to World War III!

Where to start? Libya has been irrevocably destroyed; it is too late there! Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan are aflame. We are being plunged deeper into war while being told we are withdrawing! Ukraine sucks in more guns and more troops!

Can we really have peace with Iran if we cannot control our own government as it dances to the Israelis tune? And Israel insists on war – our waging war for them! As the Israeli war criminal General and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon once told some worried American Zionists: “Trouble with the US? We lead them by the nose . . . !

Just look at the terrified families fleeing carnage in the Middle East or Mexico.

What is to be done?

When will we cut our losses and shake off the bonds of these war makers – foreign and domestic?

Aug 122015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart



In the village of Duma, an 18 month old Palestinian baby died following the fire-bombing of his family’s home by Israeli settlers. The father of the child died of burns a week later and the surviving mother and young sibling are barely alive – covered with burns from racist Jewish arson. The United Nations Special Committee to investigate Israel’s practices toward Palestinians in Israeli occupied territory have revealed that the ‘root cause’ of the escalating violence is the ‘continuous policy of Jewish settlement expansion (financed and defended by the Netanyahu regime) and the climate of impunity relating to the activities of the settlers (financed and defended by the Presidents of the 52 Major American Jewish Organizations). (UN News Centre, Aug. 10, 2015).


The recent US-Iran nuclear agreement, entitled Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or JCPOA, has implications far beyond the ending of nearly 40 years of regional confrontation.

Several fundamental issues concerning the nature of US policymaking, the power of a foreign regime (Israel) in deciding questions of war and peace and the role organized power configurations with overseas loyalties play in making and breaking executive and legislative authorities.

To investigate these fundamental issues it is important to discuss the historical context leading up to the rise of this paradoxical situation: Where a ‘global power’ is subject to the dictates of a second-rate state through the strategic penetration and influence by domestic organizations composed of ‘nominal citizens’ of the subject state with ‘divided (to put it politely) loyalties’.

The Centrality of Israel’s Unchallenged Regional Supremacy

The motor force of Israeli foreign and domestic policy is their drive for unchallenged regional supremacy: Military dominance through wars, territorial occupation, brutal armed interventions, extra territorial political assassinations of opponents and favorable one-sided treaties. To ensure its unquestioned dominance Israel has developed the only nuclear weapons arsenal and largest missile launch capacity in the region and has openly declared its willingness to use nuclear weapons against regional rivals.

Israel’s repeated mantra that it faces an ‘existential threat’ from its Arab neighbors and subjugated Palestinians has no factual basis. On the contrary, history has taught the world that Israel, directly and indirectly, has engaged in a series of aggressive wars devastating its Arab and Muslim neighbors. Israel has bombed and/or invaded Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Palestine and Sudan. Israel has assassinated scientists in Iran and Palestinian political leaders as well as intellectuals, writers and poets in the Gulf, Jordan and Europe. Even family members have not been spared Israeli terror.

Israel can brutalize its neighbors with total impunity because of its vast military superiority, but its real power is found in its overseas proxies, the Tel Aviv-dominated Zionist power configurations, especially in North America and Europe. The most important proxy organizations and individuals operate in the United States. Thanks to them Israel has received over $150 billion dollars in economic and military grants and loans from US taxpayers in the past half-century. Each year Israel rakes in billions in tribute, billions in tax-free donations from billionaire Israel loyalists with dual US citizenship, who extract their wealth from American workers, investors and gamblers, and hundreds of billions via unrestricted investments, privileged market access and technology transfers.

The economic and military transfers to Israel result from the cumulative build-up of political power among powerful US Zionists. No one disputes today that what is dubbed as the ‘pro-Israel lobby’ is the most powerful configuration inside Washington DC today. Focusing primarily on the ‘Israel lobby’ overlooks the powerful role that influential, Zionist political officials have played in deciding issues prioritized by the Israeli leadership.

Israeli power over the making and implementing of US Middle East policy has led to the US invasions of Iraq, Syria and Libya; the current economic boycott and blockade of Iran; the breakup of Sudan; and the bombing of Somalia.

Israeli power in the US operates through various political instruments in different institutional settings. The pro-Israel mass media moguls at the Washington PostWall Street Journal, the New York Times and all the TV networks unconditionally defend Israel’s bombing, dispossession and repression of Palestinians while demonizing any Arab or Muslim states which has opposed its brutality – frequently calling for the US to impose sanctions and/or to launch armed attacks against Israel’s critics.

The US military campaign known as the ‘Global War on Terror’, a series of brutal invasions and ‘regime changes’, launched after the attacks of September 11, 2001, was formulated and promoted by fanatical Israeli proxies in strategic positions within the Bush government, especially Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith, ‘Scooter’ Libby, Elliott Abrams and Richard Perle. The boycott of Iran was designed and implemented by US Treasury officials Levey and Cohen. The drumbeat for war in Iraq and the phony ‘intelligence’ about ‘weapons of mass destruction’ was propagated by New York Times scribe Judith Miller, designed by Wolfowitz and Feith, backed by the 52 President of Major American Jewish Organizations and ultimately paid for with the lives of over five thousand Americans and well over a million Iraqi civilians. The destruction and breakup of Iraq, a long-time supporter of Palestinian national rights, was accomplished without the loss of a single Israeli life – despite the enormous benefit the Jewish state has enjoyed from the war! The extraordinary success of this highest Israeli military priority was due entirely to the machinations of Israel’s highly placed US proxies.

Yet the cost of the war has been very high for the American people (and unimaginably high for Iraqis): Over a quarter million physical and mental casualties among US troops; two trillion dollars and counting in military expenditures crippling the US economy and a vast and growing army of Islamist and nationalist rebels opposing US interests throughout the region.

The Israeli power configuration within the US led the US into a war, which enhanced Israel’s dominance of the Middle East region and accelerated its annexation of Palestinian land. But Israeli ambition for total regional power is not complete. It still faces a formidable opponent to its conquest of the Middle East: Iran remains a staunch supporter of the people and national sovereignty of Palestine, Syria and Lebanon.

The regime of Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu, backed by the entire Israeli political opposition and the majority of the Jewish electorate, has been aggressively pushing for a US confrontation with Iran – through economic and eventually military warfare.

There have been scores of public and private meetings in the US and elsewhere, where Netanyahu’s regime “informed” (or rather dictated to) the entire Zionist power configuration to launch an economic and military attack against Iran with the open aim of ‘regime change’ and the ultimate aim of breaking up and destroying the Islamic republic – similar to the destruction of Iraq, Libya and now Syria.

Israel’s Proxies and the Obama – Iran Nuclear Accord

All the major US spy agencies, including the CIA, long concluded that Iran did not have a nuclear weapons program. Its nuclear program has been proven to be limited to legal, internationally sanctioned peaceful civilian use. When the US intelligence establishment went ‘off-script’ and cleared Iran of a nuclear weapons program, Israel responded by brazenly assassinating five Iranian scientists and engineers, leaking faked evidence of a nuclear weapon program and directing its US proxies to push the US toward greater economic sanctions. They escalated their media campaign demonizing Iran, pushing for an economic and military blockade of Iran using the US naval forces in the Persian Gulf and its military bases in adjoining countries. Israeli officials want yet another US war for Israel along the lines of the Iraq invasion.

With the recent change in the Iranian government leadership via democratic elections there have been serious expressions of greater flexibility with regard to inspections of its nuclear programs and facilities. At the same time Washington has been confronted with multiple escalating insurgent wars in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Afghanistan. This provides the context for President Obama’s ‘pivot’ toward negotiations and diplomacy to secure an agreement with Iran and away from military confrontation.

This has infuriated the Netanyahu regime. Its government leaders and agents met with the Presidents of the 52 Major American Jewish Organizations, leading Zionist Washington insiders like (Dennis Ross), super-rich Zionist billionaires and multiple delegations of notables and told them to launch an all-out campaign to sabotage the Iran-US- England- France-Russia-China, and Germany (‘P5+1’) nuclear agreement.

The entire Zionist political apparatus immediately organized a multi-prong, multi-million dollar campaign blitz to undermine the US President. The American (sic) Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC) mobilized hundreds of its full-time functionaries, invading the US Congress with offers of all expense-paid junkets to Israel, political threats, campaign ‘donation’ enticements and outright blackmail.

Influential US Zionist Congress people joined the onslaught with their ‘leader’ the ‘Senator from Tel Aviv’ Charles Schumer, accompanied by his fellow Zionist one-hundred percenters, Congress people like Steve Israel, Ted Deutsch, Eliot Engel and Nita Lowery. They have openly chosen to follow the dictates of the Israeli Prime Minister against their fellow Democrat US President Obama. Schumer, who frequently boasts that his name derives from ‘shomer Yisrael’ (Israel’s Guardian), flaunts his ‘role in Washington’ to serve Israel’s interest. The unannounced (or undenounced) ‘elephant in the room’ is their primary loyalty to Israel over the US. The Democratic Congressional Zionists have joined hands with the Republican war mongers – both in tow to militarist, Zionist billionaires and media moguls. The 52 organizations brazenly announced a $40 million budget to fund an Israeli front group “Citizens for a Nuclear Free Iran” to undermine President Obama’s (and the other members of the P5+1) push for diplomacy.

Netanyahu’s ‘megaphones’ in the US mass media spread his message in their daily reports and editorial pages. The Zionist power configuration ran roughshod over dissident Jewish voters and Congress people who dared to support Obama’s Iran agreement – an agreement which has majority support of the war-weary US public and strong support from US scientists and Nobel Prize recipients.

President Obama has finally counter-attacked this campaign to undermine the agreement, calling attention to the fact that “the same people who led us into the Iraq war are pushing us into war with Iran”.  The President discreetly omitted identifying the Israeli links of the “same people”.

Obama understands that the alternative to the peace accord opposed by Israel and the Zionist-led US Congress members will be a devastating regional war, costing trillions of dollars in losses to the US economy, thousands of US lives and hundreds of thousands of wounded soldiers – not to speak of millions of Iranian casualties – and an environmental holocaust! While the Zionist power configuration saturates the airwaves with its unending lies and fear mongering, each and every major city and community Jewish Confederation have sent their activists to plant stories and twist arms to sabotage the agreement.

While many US intellectuals, liberals, progressives and leftists support the US-Iran agreement (see the Scientists’ Letter to Obama on Iran Nuclear Deal, Aug. 8, 2015 with 29 top scholars and Nobel laureates support diplomacy), few would dare to identify and attack Israel’s US proxies as they promote Tel Aviv’s agenda pushing the US to war with Iran. A brief glance through the sectarian left press, for example, The Socialist Register, New Politics, New Left Review, finds no discussion of the powerful, well-financed, highly organized, elite-driven Israeli proxies and their role in determining US wars in the Middle East, and more specifically the war agenda toward Iran.


The success or failure of the US-Iran nuclear agreement will have momentous, world-historic consequences that go far beyond the Middle East. Obama is absolutely right to pose the question as one between a diplomatic accord or a large scale, long-term devastating war. But war is what Israel, its leaders, its majority and its opposition parties are demanding and what its US proxies are pursuing.

The basic question for all Americans is whether we will act as an independent, sovereign country pursuing peace through diplomacy, as we currently see unfolding with Iran and Cuba, or a submissive military instrument, directed by Israel’s proxies hell-bent on destroying America for Israel.

Aug 012015

By James Petras, 99GetSmart

Netanyahu and Erdoğan

Netanyahu and Erdoğan


The rulers of the two most powerful authoritarian regimes in the Middle East are launching major wars to reconfigure the Middle East. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu has declared war by proxy on Iran, announcing full-scale military mobilization within Israel (July 27 -29) and organizing the biggest political campaign of ultra Zionist Jews in Washington. The purpose of this two-pronged propaganda blitz is to defeat the recently signed US-Iranian agreement and start another major Middle East war. Ultimately, Netanyahu intends to take care of his ‘Palestinian Problem’ for good: complete the conquest and occupation of Palestine and expelling the Palestinian people from their homeland – the single most important foreign policy and domestic goal of the Jewish state. In order to do this, Israeli leaders have had to systematically campaign for the destruction of the Palestinians regional supporters and sympathizers – Iraq, Libya, Syria, Lebanon and Iran.

Erdoğan’s Multiple Wars

At the same time, Turkish Prime Minister Erdoğan has launched a major war against the Kurdish people and their aspirations for a Kurdish state. This has followed closely on several recent incidents beginning with the bombing (with cooperation from Turkish intelligence ) of a Kurdish youth camp, killing and wounding scores of young secular activists. Within days of the massacre of Turkish-Kurdish youth, Erdoğan ordered his air force to bomb and strafe Kurdish bases within the sovereign territories of Iraq and Syria and Turkish security police have assaulted and arrested thousands of Kurdish nationalists and Turkish leftist sympathizers throughout the country. This has all occurred with the support of the US and NATO who provide cover for Erdoğan’s plans to seize Syrian territory, displace Kurdish civilians and fighters and colonize the northern border of Syria – under the pretext of needing a ‘buffer zone’ to protect Turkish sovereignty. Such a massive land grab of hundreds of square kilometers will end the long standing support and interaction among Syrian, Iraqi and Turkish Kurdish populations who have been among the most effective opponents of radical Islamist groups.

Erdoğan’s newly declared war on the Kurds has complex domestic and regional components (Financial Times 7/28/15, p 9): Within Turkey, the repression is directed against the emerging electoral-political power of the Kurdish People’s Democratic Party. Erdoğan plans to discredit or outright ban this political party, which had won a surprising number of seats in the recent parliamentary election, call for new elections, secure a ‘majority’ in Parliament and assume dictatorial ‘executive powers’.

Regionally, Erdoğan’s invasion of Syria is part of his strategy to expand Turkey’s borders southward and westward and to provide a platform from which Turkey’s favorite jihadi clients can launch assaults on the secular government in Damascus and Aleppo. The bombing of Kurdish villages and camps in Iraq and Syria are designed to reverse the Kurd’s military victories against ISIS and will justify greater repression of Kurdish activists backing autonomy in southeastern Turkey.

Erdoğan is counting on Turkey’s agreements with the US and NATO for overt and covert collaboration against the Kurds and against Syrian national sovereignty.

Netanyahu’s Proxy Wars

Netanyahu’s multifaceted political offensive is designed to drag the US into a war with Iran. His strategy operates at many levels and in complex complimentary ways. The immediate target is the nuclear agreement recently signed between the White House and Iran. Part of longer-term strategy to destroy Iran includes the formation of a coalition of Middle East states, especially Gulf monarchies, to encircle, confront and provoke war with Iran. This political-military strategy is being pushed by leading Zionists within the highest circles of the US Government.

All the major Israeli political parties, and most Israeli voters support this dangerous policy against Iran. The Presidents of the 52 Major American Jewish Organizations in the US have been mobilized to bully, bribe and bludgeon the majority of Congress into following Netanyahu’s dictates. Every US Congressperson is being ‘visited’ and presented with propaganda sheets by leaders, activists and full time functionaries of AIPAC, the Jewish Confederations and their billionaire political donors. All the major US press and TV media parrot Netanyahu’s call for ‘war on the peace accord’ despite massive US public opinion against any escalation of the conflict.

At the highest levels of US Executive decision-making top Zionist officials avoid association with AIPAC’s public polemics and thuggish bluster, all the while promoting their own political-military ‘final solution’ … for eliminating Iran as an adversary to Israeli-Jewish supremacy in the Middle East. In the State Department and Departments of Commerce, Defense and Treasury, US-Israeli agents acting as special Middle East advisers, ambassadors and insiders push Netanyahu’s policies to undermine any normalization of relations between the US and Iran.

A recent proposal written by Professor Phillip Zelikow in the Financial Times (7/23/15, p. 9 ) entitled “To Balance (sic) the Nuclear Deal, Defeat ISIS and Confront Iran” is chilling.

The former ‘Executive Director of the ‘9/11 Commission Investigation Report’, uber-insider Zelikow promotes the formation of an ingenious coalition, in the name of fighting ISIS, but whose real purpose is to “confront Iranian ambitions”. Zelikow’s “coalition” includes Turkey, which will be assigned to attack Iran’s regional allies in Syria and Lebanon (Hezbollah) – all in the name of “fighting ISIS”.

The bland, bespectacled and most respectable Professor Zelikow lays out Netanyahu’s own bloody hit list down to the most minute detail – but tidied up with a thin veneer of ‘confronting ISIS’ to obscure his real agenda. This is no blustering AIPAC thug or open Neo-Con war monger beating the drums…

Zelikow’s ‘anti-ISIS coalition’ will ultimately go after the Iraqi Shia militia and their main supporters among Iran’s Revolutionary Guard – hewing closely to Netanyahu’s strategy!

Zelikow was a major inside advocate of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Twelve years after the US invaded, occupied and destroyed Iraq, Zelikow pops up again to promote a policy of sending US combat troops to serve Israel’s regional interest. He writes, “The military side [of the ‘coalition’] will need more Americans on the ground to offer meaningful combat support among the coalition”. (FT ibid).

Zelikow is clearly aware of US public opinion in favor of diplomacy with Iran and against the US engaging in more ground wars in the Middle East, when he writes that a ‘military effort is not an alternative to diplomacy.” Zelikow and his bosses in the Israeli Foreign Office know any US military intervention with such a “coalition” would lead to the destruction of the US-Iran Agreement and another major ground war with US troops fighting for Israel once again!

Considering his position as a highly connected insider, Zelikow’s attempts to sabotage the Iran-US agreement presents a far greater danger to world peace than all the noisy lobbying by the 52 Zionist organizations active in Congress.

Zelikow has been a highly influential security adviser to the US Executive and State Department since the early 1980’s under Reagan. He was appointed ‘special adviser to the State Department’ in 2007, a position held earlier by Neo-Con operative Wendy Sherman and followed by war-monger, Victoria Nuland. In 2011 President Obama appointed him to the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board.

He came to national prominence when President Bush appointed him Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission where he directed the highly controversial (and highly censored) 9/11 Commission Report against much public opposition. The appointment was made after Bush first choice of Henry Kissinger had created a media storm – Kissinger was never a serious choice with an insider-gatekeeper like Zelikow waiting in the wings. He was a controversial choice because of his role as intimate advisor to Condaleeza Rice and his authorship of the notorious Bush national security strategy promoting pre-emptive war, published in September 2002.

Phillip Zelikow suppressed any discussion of Israel’s role as a major catalyst for US involvements in the Afghan and Iraq wars. As executive-director of the 9/11 Commission Report, Zelikow assumed the role of editor and censor. He ignored the history of Israeli Mossad operations in the US, especially in the run-up to the attack on September 11, 2001. The report made no mention of the fake ‘moving’ van filled with Israeli spies arrested on September 11, 2001 while celebrating and photographing the destruction of the World Trade Center complex. Nor did he discuss the quiet ‘deportation’ of the Israeli agents. The report contains no discussion of the scores of phony Israel “art students” who operated in South Florida around US military installations and in the vicinity of the apartment of the alleged 9-11 hijackers. They too were quietly arrested and deported.

He also suppressed discussion of the Defense Department’s ‘Able Danger Project’, which showed US intelligence awareness of the hijackers presence and activities much earlier dating back to 1997.

In October 2001, the first ‘anthrax attack’ occurred – first sickening and killing a photojournalist at a scandal sheet in Florida. National news programs featured an interview with … the re-packaged ‘al Qaeda’ and ‘bioterrorism’ expert Professor Zelikow (his lack of Arabic and scientific credentials notwithstanding …) who declared the anthrax to be ‘weapons grade’ and ‘definitely from a state sponsored military lab’, implying Iraq. (He was correct in the ‘military lab’ part of his declaration – only the facility was the US Weapons Lab at Fort Detrick. Zelikow’s role in accusing the embargoed and beleaguered regime of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein of the anthrax hysteria was crucial in the public build-up for the case to invade Iraq, echoed Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s call for the destruction of Iraq. Master-performance complete, ‘scientist’ Zelikow’s interview (among others) has disappeared from the ‘web’.

Zelikow’s ‘expertise’ (such as it is) and usefulness to Israel derives from his articles on the political usefulness of ‘false flags’ and catastrophes – events concocted or instigated by imperialist powers to push a traumatized public into unpopular wars and draconian domestic police state policies. His work has centered on the manipulation and exploitation of ‘events’ to push public policy – and include the Cuban Missile Crisis, the re-unification of Germany, policing Northern Ireland, (but not Middle East studies or bio-weaponry’). His expertise is in the historical use of the ‘public myth’- whether the Riechstag Fire or Pearl Harbor. In Foreign Affairs, November-December 1998, he co-authored an article with the current US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, entitled Catastrophe Terrorism where a ‘watershed event’ could result in ‘horror and chaos’ pushing the US public to accept the destruction of ‘their civil liberties, wide-spread surveillance, detention and use of deadly force …

Zelikow continues to push the “false flag” script: In 2001 with the “anthrax hysteria” and now with the “Iran threat hysteria” … What is not surprising is that in both instances he hews closely to Israel’s strategic goal of utterly destroying countries, which have opposed Israel’s dispossession, occupation and expulsion of Palestinians – Iraq, Syria, Libya, Lebanon and now Iran.

Zelikow is a long-term, major asset for Israel, working quietly and effectively while the AIPAC bullies break down the doors of Congress. He never held a prominent position in the Cabinet or White House post like the brazen Zion-Cons Wolfowitz, Feith, Libby, Perle, Abrams and Levey who aggressively pushed the country into war with Iraq. Wolfowitz and company have scuttle back into obscurity under the cover of lucrative private positions while Zelikow continues to work inside pushing the Iran war agenda out of the limelight.

Zelikow’s role is far more discrete and important to Israel over the long haul than the loudmouths and thugs of AIPAC and other Zionist fronts. On the surface he pursues his academic and university administrative career (an excellent cover) while repeatedly inserting himself into crucial public discussions and quietly assuming strategic positions to advise on events or policies which have ‘turning point’ consequences and where his deep ties to Israel are never discussed.

Zelikow has one asset, which his bullying and blustering Zionist comrades lack and another which he shares with them. Zelikow is a great con-man – claiming knowledge about anthrax, Middle East relations, and military strategy. He spouts … pure unadulterated rubbish with authoritative finesse! …  Claiming legal and investigative expertise he controlled the 9/11 Commission Report and denied the American people any open and relevant discussion of the event. He even likened the Commission Report skeptics to ‘an infection’ within American public opinion – apparently relying on his ‘expertise’ in biological warfare …

What Zelikow does have in common with the raging bulls of Zionism is his constant resort to vituperation against any country or movement identified as a target by Israel. He consistently refers to the secular government of Syria (under attack by jihadi terrorists) as a “terrorist regime”. He calls the Iraqi militia fighting ISIS “Shia torture squads”. This is part of a build-up to push the US into ground war for Israel against Iran and its allies.

Unlike Turkey’s Erdoğan who uses his own armed forces to launch an all-out war to dispossess, terrorize and colonize ethnic Kurdish territories in Syria, Iraq and Turkey, Israel’s Netanyahu relys on his overseas (US) high level operatives to set in motion the wheels of war. Within days of attacks of September 11, 2001, Israel’s leading mouthpiece in the US Senate, Joseph Lieberman presented the roadmap for US wars for the next decade and a half – declaring that “the US must declare war on Iraq, Syria, Libya, Lebanon and Iran”, despite the complete absence of these countries’ involvement in the event.

Is he a prophet or just a highly successful agent? Zelikow will push for a ‘coalition’ of Middle East dictators and monarchs to fulfill Israel’s dream as dictated by Joseph Lieberman in September 2001. This is a dream of waging devastating war against Iran leading to its partition, similar to the de facto partition of Iraq, Syria and Libya, resulting in a Middle East forever ravaged by  sectarian strife, foreign occupations, balkanized and devoid of any possibility of regaining civilized life. Israel can then carry out its brutal final solution: the dispossession and expulsion of all Palestinians and establishment an expanded, purely Jewish state – surrounded by unspeakable destruction and destitution …


Erdoğan expands ‘Turkoman frontier’ into Syria and Iraq – despite the fact that Turkey has never shown any interest in the Turkoman minorities. To that end, he allies with ISIS terrorists to uproot Kurds, everywhere extending into Turkey. Erdoğan, like, Netanyahu, wants a ‘pure’ ethnic state – one Jewish, the other Turkish! Both brutal leaders have no regard for the sovereignty of neighboring states, let alone the security of their civilian populations. Both depend on the military support of the US. Both are in the process of igniting wider and more destructive wars in the Middle East. Netanyahu and Erdoğan want to reconfigure the Middle East: Turkey seizes Kurdistan and Syria; Netanyahu expands military dominance in the Persian Gulf through the destruction of Iran.

These two leaders appear to hate each other because they are so similar in arrogance and action …  But according to Professor Zelikow, the US will step in ‘god-like’ to ‘mediate’ the different power grabs among what he mindlessly refers to as the ‘partners of the coalition’