America on the road to perdition

Mohammad Jamil | For quite some time, Americans have been earning less and spending more, producing less and consuming more, with the result that both America and Americans have become technically bankrupt. In view of recession coupled with fiscal crisis, the entire balance of global economic power could shift, since economic strength is basic to remain predominantly military power. It is perhaps in this backdrop that two prominent authors Nick Turse and Tom Engelhardt wrote an article under the caption ‘A fight against the odds’ published in Asia Time Online.

The concluding sentence of the article reads: “The fact is: Al Qaeda is not an apocalyptic threat. Its partisans can cause damage, but only Americans can bring down this country”. They have given details of America’s military might – its troops, reserves and intelligence personnel, well trained special operations and its arsenal comprising tanks, planes, missiles, aircraft carriers and a stock of nukes. They reckon that Al Qaeda’s ‘shock troops’ add up to perhaps 2100 fighters who have access to rocket-propelled grenades, small arms of various sorts, the materials for making deadly roadside bombs, car bombs, and of course ‘underwear bombs’. The authors ridicule America’s military might in these words: “After the better part of a decade of conflict, the US has spent trillions of taxpayer dollars on bullets and bombs, soldiers and drones. It has waged wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that have yet to end; launched strikes in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia; dispatched special ops troops to those nations and others, like the Philippines, and built or expanded hundreds of new bases all over the world. Yet Osama bin Laden remains at large and Al Qaeda continues to target and kill Americans”. Al Qaeda was formed when the Soviet forces withdrew from Afghanistan, and Osama bin Laden’s demand was that American forces should withdraw its forces from Saudi Arabia and the Middle East., and he was critical of America for giving unqualified support to Israel. Anyhow, he was the man who was eulogized by the US and the West, and through western media he was presented as a symbol who left his luxurious life for the same of jihad. In other words, he was America’s find, and Pakistan should not be blamed for his actions.

It is an irrefragable fact that former President George W Bush had brought America on the verge of economic collapse by overstretching US army and invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq. People had hoped that with the change of guard in America, there would be reversal of the US policies. During the course of his election campaign, Barack Obama had emphasized the need for a regional approach to resolve the Afghanistan problem and signaled his resolve to forge a closer American cooperation with Pakistan with a view to dealing with the problem of violent extremism and terrorism. He had observed that to be successful in war on terror, Kashmir issue needs to be resolved, which was reflective of Obama’s pragmatism and realization that confrontation between India and Pakistan could make Afghanistan a lost cause. Anyhow, one should not expect a major shift in the US policy, and if at all there were one it will be of nuances. Obama is withdrawing forces from Iraq, but he is sending more troops to Afghanistan, with the result there will be no reduction in military expenditure.

America has indeed a great past; its traditions of freedom, democracy, human rights and human values date back to American founding fathers when they fought war of independence. It is, however, unfortunate that most successors negated the principles upheld by them. In the past, the US had resorted to unilateral use of force ostensibly to promote democracy in Haiti, Nicaragua and in Latin America. It had intervened forcibly to change regimes, restore order and preach democracy. However, on becoming President in 1933, Franklin D Roosevelt abandoned the policy pursued by his predecessor President Woodrow Wilson. He treated his neighbours with respect, acknowledged past American blunders, and saw that constitutions alone did not guarantee a democratic outcome. It is true that President has to look after the global interests of the super power but it was expected that he would not be as ruthless as his predecessor was. It has yet to be seen whether President Obama can steer the crisis by changing the course or he will also go down in the history as a war president.

It should be remembered that America is a super power, and despite Obama’s pronouncements about dramatic change in the policy, one should not have expected a major or fundamental change in the US policy because of the influence the neocons and Jews have in the US Congress. But America is an imperialist power too.

Former President Nixon had confessed in his book ‘The Real War’:

“It is naïve to say that another world war may take place to defend the free world, when in fact the war is actually going on….If the US were to abandon its allies or strategic military areas around the world, or those areas which are rich in mineral resources or lose control over the flow of oil and sea-routes, then the free world not only have lost the war, but its very existence would be at stake”.

To achieve the US objectives, various US administrations had hatched conspiracies against popular leaders of other countries when they did not fall in line. The US was reportedly responsible for assassination of Lumumba and removal of President Soekarno.

The list of its interferences, subversions, controls and overthrowing of Third World governments was too long to be elaborated. Most American leaders have never hidden their motives that they want to dominate the world and control its resources. Equally important is their objective to strengthen Israel and to make it more powerful than all the Arab countries put together. President Barack Obama had also promised to resolve Israeli-Palestinian issue. Though Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is trying to resolve the issue but she has caved in Jews and Israeli pressure, and now she says that Israel can keep some of the Jewish settlements. This means that President Obama has not been able to control Jewish lobby.

He has to realize that one of the fundamental reasons that people throughout the world hate America is because of the US’ unqualified support to Israel.

Anyhow, Obama has to prove that he can bolster confidence of the shaken world, as on completion of his first year in presidency, his popularity has started waning. He should try to fulfill his promises vis-à-vis Kashmir and Palestine to bring lasting peace in the world. If he succeeds only then he could justify the Nobel Prize for peace prematurely awarded to him.

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