Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Fundamental Nature of American Foreign Policy


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How far Obama will bring America? This is a question that continues to bother me when I watch his steps in the early days of his leadership: he ordered the closure of underground prisons of NATO in Europe, he closed the Guantanamo prison, he made a declassification on President George W. Bush memo that allowing "torture "against the prisoners, and he offered a more sane communication and more productive with the other countries which -- so far -- included in the category of America's enemies. He is proficient and confident in performing his decisions. And he's good at communicating.

"You can expect the tireless efforts of the government to increase the prosperity and our security in the second hundred days, the third hundred days, and the rest of the day after," he said in a speech of his first 100 days leading the government. The American people put confidence in his steps. The most recent poll by Gallup gave approval to Obama by 65 percent.

Earlier, during the campaign, he had shown himself to be a great communicator who managed to convince the majority of Americans to vote for him and entrusted the presidency to him. It's a gigantic project for a citizen of African descent who bears the "funny name" -- a term he himself used in a book he wrote - a name that suggests the Islamic roots of his father's side, and he succeeded brilliantly in the project. And his success to become the number one in White House, however, has aroused a sensation and a certain expectation in the world of American politics today, and it extends to various parts of the world.

During his first hundred days, the world saw the appearance of an American president who was much different from the previous president, George W. Bush who imagining himself as the leader of "modern Crusade" while echoing the war against terrorism, to whatever action he meant as terrorism. Obama opened communication. Bush impressed himself as a person who just wanted to know what was in his own mind, what he wanted, and how it was realized for whatever reason, even when the reason was proven untrue. And Bush is not the only American president who likes to do so. We know the name of Lyndon B. Johnson, who made a false excuse to demolish Vietnam and Laos, Nixon for Chile and Cambodia, Reagan to Nicaragua and El Salvador, and so on. There are dozens of the U.S. maneuver and intervention and it often involves  false pretenses of the government in power.

Until the end of the twentieth century, the United States recorded has sent more than 250 million soldiers to fight in other countries; and within the period after World War II to the present, the U.S. is the most industrious nation in waging war in other countries. The amount of course has been increasing with the war waged by George W. Bush in Afghanistan and Iraq at the beginning of the 21st century.

Now we see Obama offers "different language" in the U.S. association with other nations. Obama is like having the willingness to communicate with the language used by the interlocutor and bringing the conversation to a more constructive level. It is not surprising that we can expect the emergence of a new chapter in relations with countries such as Cuba, Venezuela, and even towards better in diplomacy with Iran.

At least Obama is offering a communication patterns that are not encountered in some of his predecessors, who likes to put themselves at the center of the "good-bad ratings", which therefore they tend to intervene and send troops to fight. Obama has a remarkable ability to build closeness with anyone he spoke. He has skills as an accomplished communicator who is able to change the behavior of others. If we look at how the late President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, thrusting his hand shaking him, and there we see how Obama has made him acceptable to the party that originally asserted its harsh attitude to the U.S..

Is Obama an anomaly? So far, yes. Especially if we trace further back, about the history of the U.S. lunge in many countries in almost all parts of the earth, which begins with the CIA maneuver at first, followed later by sending troops after the "reason" is found, and ends with the formation of a new government in the country that supports the U.S. interests. If the intervention fails to give birth to a new government, the United States will make efforts to impose sanctions and exclusion of the country concerned.

Three Pillars of the US government
Intelligence, military, and industry: these are the three pillars, which so far underlying the U.S. interests with its foreign policy, especially with its relation with the third world countries. And the three pillars always need enemies. Military and CIA require the enemy as the reason for their existence. Industry -- especially the defense contractor -- require it as an enemy to be fought, with advanced weaponry and air defense systems; and the enemy of their enemy should be armed.

The corporate wealth has become inflated, exceeding the wealth of a number of countries in the world. The executives of these corporations enjoy this abundance thanks to the designation themselves as the world's policemen. Their wealth and influence -- accompanied by the submission of media required to maintain and perpetuate fear, previously the fear of "communism" and now the fear of "terrorism" -- has been going on for decades and became stronger. Three pillars have natural properties which leads to the intervention of the enemies. It is inevitable.

In cases such as Grenada, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, even if the intervention target was not promising economic opportunities abound for the U.S. multinationals, but the CIA and the US armed forces felt obliged to intervene. Rhetoric and socialist-revolutionary program has always been a threat that must be stopped to preserve the principle, and also as a warning to others. Cases with small states which occurs repeatedly, shows how scared the U.S. against the emergence of "good example" of the Third World: the birth of an independent society that is not tied to Washington.

In the cold war, every government and movement which launched a program and such rhetoric certainly could not be a US ally. Countries that could not serve as an ally in the Cold War, of course would be declared as "communist". To combat it, then later was created a counter term, namely "national security". It's a flicker of motion which  refers solely from the proverbial, "If there is no communist, then America have to find it."

With the phrase "national security" as an excuse, vocabulary of the "communist" (and also "Marxist") has been used in excess, and abused in such a way by the U.S. leaders and the mass media so that it becomes completely meaningless. I own myself have experienced such a period, ie when all expressions of disappointment or book discussion was yelled, "Communist!". You also often say the same thing to me, dahling, mmmm .... as if at that time I was kind of bugs and you were ready to get rid of me from the sidelines of your book pages. "Communist!" Yeah? And you are nerds, damn!

Well, indeed, the enemy need to be named, and also characteristics, and by calling it on all the time -- I dunno, as a communist or a witch -- then the fear can be conditioned and we become convinced of its existence.

"We have to fight them," US officials said. And "they" could mean farmers in the Philippines, mural painter in Nicaragua, the elected prime minister in the election in British Guiana, the European intellectuals, the neutral Cambodian people, the African nationalists, and anyone who is desired by the U,S.. They become part of the unilateral conspiracy, and imaged as a threat for the America's live views. During the cold war, no other threat which was more terrifying than the "communist threat". At the present time, there is nothing more terrible than the "terrorist threat", so George W. Bush to call for a crusade and the destruction of Iraq and Afghanistan. (We will know the lies behind the U.S. invasion mission to the two countries. Bush, you are mentally ill!)

Conspiracy Mentality
With regard to "communism",  when the name has been given and the fear has been increased then the next step is to find its common traits which deserve to be fought. Thus, we arrive at the next question, "What are the similarities in each country which then becomes the target of the onslaught and deserves to be bombarded with bombs by the most powerful country in the world?"

In every case in the third world countries, they deserve to be targeted when making the U.S. uncomfortable with the policy of "stand on our own feet". We've recorded a time when third world countries inflamed by passion and spirit to liberate themselves from Western colonialism and wanted a free standing between the two powers clashed.

It is the spirit of the times which generally manifested in three forms of stance :
(1) The ambition to liberate themselves from economic dependency and political obedience to the U.S.,
(2) The failure to minimize relations with the socialist bloc, or a reluctance to press the left in their own country, or a refusal to open up to U.S. military installations in their country,
(3) The emergence of an effort to replace the government that does not run all of these goals.

America has its own commentary in dealing with countries that develop a passion like this: they are anti-American. In the current perspective, the tendency to maintain the neutrality of the state has been able to give birth to a pro-communist accusations. Throughout the cold war, the U.S. repeatedly demonstrated its unpreparedness to deal with a neutral attitude shown by the leaders of third world countries, as well as its displeasure against the rhetoric and revolutionary movements in these countries. Mosaddegh of Iran, Sukarno of Indonesia, Nkrumah of Ghana, Sihanouk of Cambodia, all of them -- according to the U.S. -- had to declare themselves firmly on the side of the "Free World", well, the free world commanded by the U.S.. There are serious consequences if they refuse to do it.

Responding to pressure from the West, Kwame Nkrumah, president of Ghana in 1960-1966, expressed his opinion as follows, "The experiments we try to apply in Ghana in essence is to build the country in cooperation with the world as a whole. That's actually called by the non-aligned countries. We are not hostile to the socialist countries, as done by the ex-colonial countries. I hope you remember, when the Britain tries to develop peaceful relations with the Soviet Union, the same thing should not be done by its ex-colonial countries. Books about socialism, which is published and sold freely in the UK are banned in its colonies countries. And after Ghana becomes independent, the assumption never changed. Ghana's independence is required to continue restrictive ideological approach as before. When we do the same with the Britain in dealing with the socialist countries, we are accused of being pro-Russian and we are accused of carrying very dangerous ideas for Africa."

The situation in third world countries as described by Nkrumah reminds us of the dark situation in the southern U.S. in the 19th century. At that time there were a lot of slaves afflicted and they then chose to join their friends in the North in the Civil War. The white people in South continued to defend the idea that the black people were supposed to be grateful for what had been done by their white employers, and they should be happy about it. A doctor from the South, Samuel Cartwright, stating that many slaves at that time suffering from mental illness, which he called "Drapetomania". According to the diagnosis, it is a mental illness caused by the uncontrolled desire to free themselves from slavery.

In the second half of the 20th century, the same disease is called "Communism". And at the beginning of the 21st century, the disease -- perhaps -- is called "Terrorism".

Still with regard to communism, in 1960 appeared a witty report submitted by the National Commission about the causes and prevention of violence. The commission reported that J. Edgar Hoover -- a criminologist who for many years served as the FBI director -- has helped to spread the view among police that the mass protest, whatever its form, has always had a relationship with conspiracy driven by the agitators, and of course those who are referred to as the instigator are the communists who "likes to create misdirection to please the public".

Key to the report is in the last phrase, one thing that shows the mentality of conspiracy among the holders of power. They always assume that no one -- except under the influence of the enemy -- can move a mass protest. Protests occur certainly instigated from outside, from the communists who try to mislead them.

One thing we need to consider is they forget that until now CIA which has the largest role  in sowing sedition in various countries to make the situation is uncertain and the various attempts to overthrow the government in other countries.

The entire state archives which has been declassified -- you can see it  on the National Security Archive website -- shows how vivid and rough the maneuvers performed by the CIA in making the situation of a country becomes chaotic.

If Reagan admitted that the people of El Salvador have strong reason to revolt on their bad luck, then, one thing questionable is the accusation he made about the alliance of Soviet Union, Cuba, and Nicaragua which had incited them. For that reason, he then intervened in El Salvador, with preliminary operations by the CIA to prepare extra-legal lie for the sake of the position of people who were supported by him at the top of the government seat.

Post-Cold War Adventure
Practically, the Cold War ended when the Soviet Union -- which by Ronald Reagan called the "Evil Empire" -- broke up in 1991, about five years after Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet leader, launched the policy of Glasnost (openness) and Perestroika (restructuring). Then the world witnessing the beginning of a new era that is no more reassuring: World Police era. The implication is the same; when there is no enemy, then the U.S. must find it. And the reason must always be available for the U.S. to continue the adventure.

Towards the end of the1990s, Washington was busy engaging in a serious effort to control elections in countries which previously was Soviet bloc : Russia, Mongolia, and Bosnia. In 1999, they bombed the people of Serbia and Kosovo for 78 days, which at the time it was going to last forever. Balkan war has devastated the countries there. At its peak, the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia -- which was called as "the last communist" by Washington -- divided into six small states.

After Balkan episode, then the U.S. did other adventures in the fall of 2001 to intervene openly in the elections in Nicaragua to impede the left's victory. At the same time, it bombarding Afghanistan, and continued its adventures by giving destruction in Iraq.

While continuing savagery against Afghanistan, in 2002 Washington taking the time to hire the support needed in an effort to overthrow Hugo Chavez and his populist government in Venezuela. Throughout these years, while it was still strangling Cuba after centuries of imperialist occupation, the U.S. refused to vacate Guantanamo military base. The U.S. changed Guantanamo into a detention camp for illegal and poor prisoners, as well as for a number of people who were abducted from various places around the world, in what was touted as the War on Terrorism.

There is no peace after Cold War ended. For nearly half a century the officials busy feeding their people with the indoctrination of Cold War, and they force people to fight against the inhabitants of other countries with dishonest reasons.

The military budget swelled so large by one thing that constantly instilled into the minds of citizens, namely that they were fighting to combat the same threat: International Communist Conspiracy, its headquarters in Moscow. But then the Soviet Union crumbled. Warsaw Pact also disappeared. Satellite states of Eastern Europe had become independent states. Communist traces even changed and became a capitalist. But until the end of George W. Bush reign, nothing has changed with U.S. foreign policy.

Even NATO, a defense pact that is established -- supposedly -- to protect Western Europe from the Soviet invasion, still standing upright. Its troops and weaponry become more sophisticated, and NATO becomes a vehicle continuously lubricated so it will revolve smoothly to any foreign political Washington directs it. The U.S. and its NATO allies to act as a substitute for the government on the Balkans as protectorate region. The U.S. also takes advantage of NATO treaty as justification for its members to join the U.S. to invade Afghanistan.

When Russia closing the Cold War bases in Eastern Europe, Vietnam, and Cuba, the US even opened its military bases in areas of the former Soviet Union and in other countries. When Russia closed its intelligence radio station in Lourdes, Cuba, the US even built sophisticated eavesdroppers station in Latvia, right on the border of Russia, as part of global interception system of Washington.

Everything becomes a game full of trickery. The Soviet Union and the so-called communism has never been, and indeed so far not, the object of Washington global attacks. International Communist Conspiracy is just magic created by the U.S.. Real enemies for America always just government or movement, or even individuals, who are considered blocking the expansion of the U.S. Empire -- whatever the name given by the United States against them -- communist, criminal states, drug dealers, terrorists, intellectuals, artists, and so on. You remember, John Lennon -- the Beatles frontman -- was the man who for many years and until his death being followed by FBI.

 So, how far Obama will bring America? It becomes a serious question, because he himself already "promising" with a few steps and his approach, in his first 100 days, his success or failure within his second 100 days, third, and so on, especially in building the relationships between nations and interstates become healthier, it seems to be very determined initially by how much he is able or not able to reframe the basic nature of U.S. foreign policy. The problem is, their long history of interfering in the affairs of other countries and sending troops to realize what they want even have given arbitrary pride and narcissistic within their admirers. I admire you, dahling, but I am not wowed by the government of your country. Trust me.

Robert Kagan, a leading man who establishing the U.S. foreign policy, with full confidence said, "The fact is that the benevolent hegemony which is run by the U.S. is a good thing for most of the inhabitants of the earth. It certainly is the best alternative and realistic than all the alternatives that may exist." And this opinion is shared by a number of others, including Michael Hirsch, editor of Newsweek magazine, which assumes that the U.S. privileges in carrying out its foreign policy is something that is accepted as a "gratitude for their historical gains that have been protected by a force that could be considered generous."

That's how they agree on foreign policy and be able to live peacefully with it. And its implications can be very worrying: the U.S. may do anything and if the U.S. is forced to fight, then it must be done by humane.

Well, and I ask myself, "How many millions of casualties by "the generous power of the U.S.", hm?"
***
[CZ-lacalifusa122514]



Reference Books
■ Agee, Philip. Inside the Company: CIA Diary, Bantam; second printing edition , Januari, 1984
■ Blum, William. Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Monroe, ME: Common Courage, 1995.
■ Rogue States: The Rule of Force in World Affairs. South End, 2000.
■ Kornbluh, Peter. Nicaragua, The Price of Intervention: Reagan's War Against the Sandinistas. Washington, DC: Institute for Policy Studies, 1987.
■ Kwitny, Jonathan. Endless Enemies: The Making of an Unfriendly World. New York: Congdon & Weed, 1984.
■ The Guerrilla Wars of Central America: Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala. New York: St. Martin's, 1994.
■ Quigley, John. The Ruses for War: American Interventionism Since World War II. Buffalo: Prometheus, 1992.
■ Stockwell, John. In Search of Enemies: a CIA Story. W.W. Norton, 1978.
■ White, Richard. The Morass: United States Intervention in Central America. New York: Harper, 1984.
■ Woodward, Bob. Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1987


Internet Reading
The Globalization of Politics: American Foreign Policy for a New Century
Foreign Policy in Perspective
President Obama's foreign policy is based on fantasy
Remaking the World: Progressivism and American Foreign Policy 
Have We Hit Peak America?


Declassified secret documents can be found among others in:
National Security Archive - The George Washington University
Forgotten History
Virtual Reading Room Documents Search : U.S. Department of State

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CZ

"Thank you for your perception! I like your romantic side, even if I do not always comment and I'm glad that you're in my circle of friends."
(Courtesies by: Wolfgang A. Gerhardt)

Wolfgang A.Gerhardt : May be you like this Sunday collage

Cisca Zarmansyah : Before today, there never was a person doing this to me. You create a simple matter to look special. This is a special thing for me.

Cisca Zarmansyah : Thank you. I love it. I love you, my friend.

CieL- FreYa Ceastle : Hmm, he's so nice...















"I am me.
In all the world,
there is no one else exactly like me.
Everything that comes out of me
is authentically mine,
because I alone chose it --
I own everything about me:
my body,
my feelings,
my mouth,
my voice,
all my actions,
whether they be to others or myself.
I own my fantasies,
my dreams,
my hopes,
my fears.
I own my triumphs and successes,
all my failures and mistakes.
Because I own all of me,
I can become intimately acquainted with me.
By so doing,
I can love me
and be friendly with all my parts.
I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me,
and other aspects that I do not know
-- but as long as I am friendly
and loving to myself,
I can courageously and hopefully
look for solutions
to the puzzles and ways
to find out more about me.
However I look and sound,
whatever I say and do,
and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time
is authentically me.
If later some parts of how I looked,
sounded,
thought,
and felt
turn out to be unfitting,
I can discard that which is unfitting,
keep the rest,
and invent something new
for that which I discarded.
I can see,
hear,
feel,
think,
say, and do.
I have the tools to survive,
to be close to others,
to be productive,
and to make sense
and order out of the world of people
and things outside of me.
I own me,
and therefore,
I can engineer me.
I am me,
and I am okay."

VIRGINIA SATIR
(American Phychologist and Educator, 1916-1988)