We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Planned Chaos in the Middle East—and Beyond

Click here to access article by Ismael Hossein-Zadeh from CounterPunch.

This is not exactly a new thesis, but it bears repeating.
The seeds of the chaos were planted some 25 years ago, when the Berlin Wall Collapsed. Since the rationale for the large and growing military apparatus during the Cold War years was the “threat of communism,” U.S. citizens celebrated the collapse of the Wall as the end of militarism and the dawn of “peace dividends”—a reference to the benefits that, it was hoped, many would enjoy in the United States as a result of a reorientation of part of the Pentagon’s budget toward non-military social needs.

But while the majority of the U.S. citizens celebrated the prospects of what appeared to be imminent “peace dividends,” the powerful interests vested in the expansion of military/security spending felt threatened. Not surprisingly, these influential forces moved swiftly to safeguard their interests in the face of the “threat of peace.”
The author continues on in the article to expertly develop the thesis of a voracious military-industrial complex and adds Israeli-Zionist territorial ambitions to the mix. I agree with all of his arguments, however they are not sufficient to explain the policies of the US-led Empire. 

The Empire's capitalist elite who determine those policies are also concerned about acquiring control of rapidly diminishing resources, particularly fossil fuels, needed to keep their giant wealth-sucking capitalist machinery fueled for more growth, or at least, to sustain it until some mythical new energy source is obtained. Thus, they have an imperial agenda to acquire as much control of these resources as they can, and they will attempt to subvert or attack any opposition, which includes the rapidly developing capitalist gang known as the BRICs, that stands in their way. This, in addition to the impending catastrophic climate destabilization which their system is causing, is what makes today's world so dangerous.