By Dimitris Konstantakopoulos
More than 15 years ago, while I was covering one of the annual Munich Forums on Security, as a journalist, I asked Brent Scawcroft, former US National Security Advisor, what should be the relations of the West with China and Russia. He told me:
We have to entertain with both of them better relations than they can have between themselves.
Given our level of ignorance about what is going on behind the scenes around Kim, Trump and their meeting, we must remain very reserved about what is all that about.
But if we ignore what can happen in this summit and most of what made it possible, we can be near to certain as to what are the aims of the Neocon Party of War most probably has contributed to its election and is controlling Mr. Trump.
For them, what is happening with North Korea and its nuclear weapons is important, but it is not the most important. As Mr. Harris, the US envoy to South Korea put it, the real long-term challenge behind North Korea is China and, even Russia, the states but also their regimes. From the imperial point of view the North Korean problem has to be addressed in such a way, as to facilitate Imperial policy towards China, Russia and the smaller nations-targets, undermining their unity, helping the emergence of pro-western, regime change forces in both countries and in North Korea, changing their regimes and dislocate them.
Why they are so radical? Because of a very, very simple reason, because no center of Western Imperialism is ready to accept such huge relatively independent and strong entities as China and Russia are today. They do not have the slightest wish to just be sitting idle watching China becoming the Global Economic Superpower, adding one Italy every year to its economy. The last thing they would like to see is Russia coming back to the role one had the USSR in world affairs. They cannot sleep at night thinking of half of the Middle East dominated by Iran in alliance with Russian Army!
You may have any opinion you wish about the Chinese or the Russian regimes, how much of “progress” and how much of “reaction” they represent. Still, one would be foolish not to understand that without the mere existence of those two big and relatively independent entities, without their military and, more and more, economic parity of China with the US, the Totalitarian Empire of Finance would already dominate the Planet, in a way it would make extremely difficult any resistance to it. That concerns both nations of the Global South and forces struggling for social and political democracy inside the West, the Global North.
Twenty years ago they were dreaming of a new American Century, meaning not a century, and probably not an American one, but the eternal Kingdom of Money. Now you think they are ready to accept a Chinese-Russian-Iranian century? No, they are not.
Graham Allison, a member of the Trilateral, ex-Dean of the Kennedy School of Government and an authority in US Foreign Policy knows better than me and you how his compatriots who make decisions are thinking. He should have serious reasons to write last year a whole book trying to persuade his fellow Americans not to fall into the “Thucydides’ trap” and not to go easily into the path leading to a World War with China.
The election of Trump in the US is due to various factors. But it could not happen, as we will try to prove, if there would not be a huge and complicated Neocon conspiracy to elect and to use him. To understand Trump’s conspiracy logic, that is the Neocon strategy behind him, we must forget what he says or what we think he is, and analyze what he and his administration are doing and in which strategic context his doings are getting a meaning and a sense.
Unity between China, Russia and other nation-targets: The main Key of the world situation
Many years after Scawcroft gave me the above answer, not only the United States were unable to entertain with Beijing and Moscow better relations than they can have between themselves, the US has now much worse relations with both China and Russia than China and Russia can even imagine having between themselves.
Beginning with the invasion of Iraq and continuing with the wars in the Middle East, the interventions in ex-USSR and the threats against Korea, the Neocons themselves tough both Chinese and Russians how vitally important is their cooperation. Or at least, it seems to be the case.
Now, it is of utmost importance for the Neocons, who hold power in the US, in Israel and command also much influence in a lot of world capitals, to undermine the alliance between China and Russia, and also the unity between every one of them with the other potential or real targets of Western Imperialism, like North Korea, Iran, Syria etc.
For that reason the level of relations, the unity or disunity between China and Russia, and also with all the other smaller nations-targets of Western Global Imperialism is the key factor, the single most important one for the evolution of the international situation.
The Unity of such a “Resistance Front” is one of the main factors which will decide if the world will evolve towards a more democratic, “multipolar” structure or towards the complete domination of Finance and the destruction of human civilization, if not of life on Earth.
The Global Empire knows that with China, Russia and the smaller nations united, it is near to impossible to win. To win them has to divide its rivals and also to find allies inside the political and social forces in those countries.
Divide et Impera
Not only Logic and Analysis, History also testifies to the veracity of what we said. We are not going here to debate the root causes of the historic split between Mao’s China and Soviet Russia. But it was that split that made possible Kissinger’s game with Beijing in the ‘70s, which, in its turn, made possible the encirclement of the Soviet Union, an encirclement which was used to encourage the emergence of pro-capitalist, pro-western forces in the kernel of the then Soviet leadership and, finally, the collapse-suicide of the USSR.
History is not easily repeated in the same way, if not for other reasons, because people know what happened in the past, or at least they should know it. But such a huge western triumph cannot but shape the Imperial strategic thinking.
Playing Russia against China or China against Russia remains always one of the main strategies of the Empire. If China and Russia remain united, it is simply impossible for the West to win over them.
Three factors which may threaten such a unity are 1) the existence in both China and Russia of forces which, even if they are not admitting it openly, want their integration and alliance with the West, 2) the lack of equilibrium between an essentially economic and an essentially military superpower, 3) a heritage of animosity and mistrust inherited by past conflicts, 4) the enormous stupidity of the European and in particular German political class and its direct control by the bankers who appoint their people directly as politicians. Mrs. Merkel not only did obey blindly the Americans imposing sanctions to Ukraine, now she defended them against Trump in the G7 meeting. Maybe an IQ test has to be introduced in Europe for people claiming to be elected in public office.
Germany and Europe could reequilibrate the world situation and also add an element of stability in the Resistance Front. There are still some persons who think like that in the European political class like Dominique de Villepin, who proposed recently an axis Paris-Berlin-Moscow-Beijing, but they are by far too few and isolated. Besides, Germany cannot lead internationally Europe, while in the same time destroying and plundering South European nations!
Of course all that won’t be so easy as long as Putin and Xi seem committed to the Russian-Chinese unity.
The danger of Nuclear World War and how to fight against it
We must not underestimate the direct threat out of the nuclear war threats emanating from Washington since the election of Donald Trump. The risk of a Nuclear World War is a very real one and it will remain so, as long as the dominant social, economic, political and cultural system remains what it is in the West.
Every measure which helps diminish the probability of a nuclear conflict by intention, by miscalculation or by accident must be supported and welcomed by any sound person on Earth.
But weapons and threats to use them are symptoms and not the root causes of the problem, as Brzezinski observed during the first years of Gorbachev’s rule in the USSR.
It is imperative to treat those symptoms, but it is advisable to do it in a way removing the underlying disease or, at least, not aggravating it.
The enormous concessions Gorbachev and, even more actively, Yeltsin made afterwards to the West seemed at that time to remove the War danger and, in particular, the Nuclear War danger.
By now, everybody knows that those concessions did only one thing. They permitted more than a dozen catastrophic wars in the Middle East and Africa and they made more probable now the danger of a local or world nuclear conflict than, probably, at every other moment since 1945.
By allowing practically the interventions in Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya etc., the so-called “international community” did only one thing, it created more possibilities for new interventions.
This is why it is very important to face simultaneously the threat of a nuclear conflict and the political use of nuclear threats, however difficult it is to combine both.
Trump’s Nuclear threats are probably calibrated (by those able to control him) to help the emergence of pro-Western forces in both China and Russia (and also to the smaller nations-targets) and of course inside North Korea. The sanctions imposed to North Korea are also calibrated in the same logic. To help alienate North Korea, China and Russia, but also to help the emergence in China of those forces which will hide their pro-western policy under the patriotic slogan “We are not going to sacrifice our economic miracles, in order to defend a mad guy and his regime”.
By the way, even if one accepts that, for some reason, China and Russia had to impose sanctions on North Korea, one has a difficulty to understand why they did that not attaching a conditionality term, for instance a clause to review the situation every six months, like it happened with European sanctions against Russia, which have to be readopted every six months, but they preferred to give to the United States an absolute weapon, making necessary the consent of Washington to the lifting of sanctions.
Is it just a lack of imagination of Chinese and Russian diplomacy, or is it reflecting the remaining power of forces which they still believe they can persuade the West of welcoming them as equal, respected partners in the Global West?
President Reagan used probably the same method with nuclear threats already in the ‘80s. By addressing then his mad nuclear threats against Moscow, he probably did exactly that, already knowing the existence of, if not secretly cooperating, with “Soviet reformers” who would use those threats back in Moscow as political weapons to promote their agenda. (By the way, one wonders under what capacity and on whose behalf, Trump wanted to solve the Korean nuclear question in the beginning of the ‘80s?)
Only a level of advanced cooperation between Western circles and some nucleus inside the Soviet State can explain for instance, how a Western aviation hobbyist was able to cross all Soviet air defenses and to land unimpeded at the Red Square. Those who permitted the flight of Mathias Rust have done it to humiliate the leadership of the Red Army permitting to Gorbachev to decapitate it, thus neutralizing “pro-actively” the main opposition to his “reforms”.
And this remark brings us to the question of the Armed Forces and the Globalization
The Armed Forces and the Empire of Finance, Pentagon and the Neocons, Armies in Russia and China
In most countries of the world, including China, Russia but even the United States, the Armed Forces, for sociological, structural, ideological, historical reasons, represent the institution which is more connected to the notions of the State and of the Nation. For this reason and because of the way a military force is constructed, the Army is less influenced than any other institution by the Totalitarian Empire of Finance, which has gradually put its people in all critical points of the western (but not only of the Western) political, media, intellectual and economic power. For this reason, military men are negatively predisposed to the advent of a Totalitarian Empire, for which any strong human identity, like the Nation or the State are enemies. That is also true for every kind of strong ideology, like patriotism, nationalism, traditional religions or any other kind of Ideology, of the Left or of the Right.
If the idea of a war against Iran represented the interests of the US Empire and not the world and regional vision of the Empire of Finance, then we would see the Pentagon and the CIA pushing for war against Iran. The fact that we see those institutions becoming the main resistance points inside the US Establishment to further escalation cannot be easily explained but as a reflection of a strong, behind the scenes, clash between the US Empire and the Empire of Finance, the latter represented in Geopolitics, by the International Neocon Party of War.
The same factors are also in action in both China and Russia, making Chinese and Russian Armed Forces the most resolute institutions in opposing the Global Empire. This is happening much more there as not only both countries are on an open collision course to the Empire, but also the historical origins of their Armed Forces are the revolutionary armies their Revolutions created to defend themselves. The Russian and the Chinese revolutions were not only social ones, they were also national, pro-independence, anti-imperialistic Revolutions, otherwise it would have been impossible for instance for Trotsky to hire 10.000 Tsarist officers to staff the Red Army. Those historical and social factors explain why Army in China and Russia are among the main forces opposing pro-capitalist, pro-western and pro-globalization forces in both powers.
But the military also has a big weakness. It knows how to use hard, military power but it is usually very weak in using political power, which is equally, if not more important in both political and military struggles.
To win a nuclear war against China and/or Russia is too difficult. The real aim is to provoke a regime change in one or both of those countries, to split them, to begin isolate the other one. In order to do it, besides trying to oppose Russia to China and vice versa and cultivating their mutual mistrust, you have to undermine the prestige of their Armies and also of their politicians who follow a national agenda.
Mr. Netanyahu for instance, who is a prominent figure of the Neocon current inside the West and, we must admit it, one of the most capable and astute strategists of our times, knows very well that there must be not only a stick, but also a carrot, even if his carrot seems sometimes not very worthy. He has pushed Trump to deliver the Korean speech in the UN last year, but Israel is providing in the same time military technologies to China, Americans do not! He is for much stronger US action in Syria and Iran, but he is simultaneously declaring he is the greatest friend of Moscow. The pro-Israeli lobby in the US was active in promoting US aggression in Ukraine, closing even its eyes to the existence of Neo Nazis in the troops which made the coup in Kiev, but Israel itself refused to oppose openly Crimea’s integration to Russia.
Trump and the example of German National Socialism
It is not a coincidence that the threats of a nuclear war have mainly emanated from Washington after the election of Donald Trump. Of course the Empire pushed Hillary to make comparisons between Putin and Hitler, thus implying the threat of a war against Russia. Hillary and Nuland acting as Neocon agents of influence inside the anti-Netanyahu, Obama administration, were able to advance the anti-Russian agenda and overcome, with the help of Neocon Sarkozy of France, Obama’s objections to the Libyan campaign.
But Hillary had not the political capital to wage war against Russia. The only thing she accomplished was to provide with such capital her opponent, Donald Trump himself!
Of course Trump is not Hitler stricto sensu. But, if we judge him by what he and his administration are doing, forgetting what they say, we see an enormous similarity with the political operation undertaken by National Socialism in Germany:
1. Hitler was able to master the national and social aspirations of the German people, the force of its revolt against the establishment and put them at the service of this same establishment, of the German Big Capital, of German Militarism and of the preparation of the Eastern campaign Drang Nach Osten .
Trump has given all Power to Goldman Sachs on economic matters and to the Neocons in foreign-military policy. He makes from time to time some friendly gestures to Russia, but in practice his administration is pushing NATO in an extremely aggressive posture around Russia and he has provided Ukraine with arms Obama was refusing to provide it. Before elections, Trump has portrayed himself as an anti-war politician, after his election the Neocon war program is very much back in action in both Middle East and Korea.
2. After been elected, Hitler got rid of the “radicals” who have taken seriously the “anti-capitalist” and “socialist” demagogy of the Nazis. Trump did exactly the same. In Germany they killed Rohm and his followers, in USA they pushed aside Bannon. In both cases this was also a condition to become accepted by the ruling class
3. Luring the East about his real intentions. Stalin was not interested inrevolutions abroad, either in Germany or in China. He wanted to build his “Socialism in one country”. He wanted to avoid at any cost the clash with the West. That helped very much Hitler to persuade him that he was or he could become his best friend, or even an ally. Berlin helped even Stalin decapitate the Red Army just before the War, by providing him with false compromising materials about Soviet Generals who were shot. As a result, the USSR was nearly destroyed, with the Soviet troops able to stop the invading Germans only some miles from the Kremlin. The USSR won ultimately over Germany, but only having paid an enormous human cost.
It is an established historical fact that it is impossible to win over Russia in a direct, frontal way (Napoleon, Western intervention in the Russian Civil War, Hitler have proved that). You may win over Russia only by confusing it, and you can confuse it only by looking to satisfy the needs of its politicians or important social forces. It nearly happened in the ‘30s and ‘40s and it finally happened with Gorbachev and the “Soviet reformers”, who have taken their foes for their friends, because they were hoping to integrate, make their country accepted and recognised as part of the “Civilized Western World”. They did not understand that you are usually respected more for what you really are, than for what you pretend to be.
Nevertheless, Gorbachev and Yeltsin did accomplish something very important with their concessions, even if their country was dislocated and the world did pay also a huge price for their policies
They proved, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that the “enemy” does not want to take prisoners. Global, Western Capitalism cannot and does not want to accept the existence of any relatively independent entity like Russia or China for that matter. Illusions about that may prove mortal.
The Logic behind Irrationalism
Hitler was never an accident. “Mad”, extreme persons appear in the scene of History, only when its Gods have to realize terrible, horrible missions, most humans would hesitate to accomplish.
Since Humans exist, they build, they destroy, the reconstruct. That way the Cycles in History serve Evolution. But now, we cannot go on like that. With the technologies we dispose we will end as a species and, with us, most other species!
Today, there is a tendency to understand Hitler and Nazism as a kind of extreme aberration of German nationalism. Even some people believe that his attack against Russia was a strategic mistake, that he should attack Britain and leave Russia aside. It is a pity they were not alive at his time to advise him what to do.
Hitler and Nazism were the loyal children of Capitalism and of its Crisis, they were not an accident. The first time Swastika made its appearance was in the private armies formed to combat revolted workers in Germany, immediately after WWI. Their rise to power became possible because of the huge crisis of Capitalism and of the challenge the European workers movement and the Soviet Union put to western Capitalism.
After 2008, we are very much in the context of an as deep, even deeper, even if less dramatic in its form, crisis of Capitalism. Western capitalism is not threatened now by Soviet Russia, but it is threatened by the economic rise of China and the military comeback of Russia.
Hitler’s rise was accepted by the German and a large part of the Western ruling classes exactly because his plan was, from the very beginning, German expansion to the East, Drang Nach Osten, the war against Soviet Russia and the European workers and socialist movement, the one being the condition for the other, as today the rise of Totalitarianism in the West is necessary to waging war and the war against terror is justifying measures against political and social dissent in the West. Hitler did not attack Russia by mistake, but as the “vanguard” of Western imperialism, the “War Party” inside the West.
The same role is now played by the Neocon party of the War in the West. They are not just some extremists with huge capacities to organize conspiracies. They do have them but they still represent a minority inside western establishment. If they are so successful in imposing their agenda it is because they dispose a coherent proposal and they are resolute enough to push it. They provide a possibly mad, still clear way out of the crisis of both Capitalism and the West. One can try to reconstruct their argument, inside the Imperial nucleus itself, like that:
«You speak always about the danger of doing this or that. Of course there are dangers. But we have to do something. Are you ready to see China becoming the first economic-technological superpower? Are you ready to accept Russia reoccupying the place the USSR had in the past? Are you ready to see Iran dominating half of the Middle East, in alliance with Russia? If you are not ready to see all that happening (and it is already happening), if you don’t have anything other to propose, then please stop criticizing all the time what we are doing or what we want to do”.
This type of arguments was used by Alcibiades, as described by Thucydides in his classic Peloponnesian War, and it is by using such arguments that he persuaded his fellow Athenians to decide the expedition to Sicily, which sealed the demise of Athens.
This is why we see such astonishing similarities between what function did perform the German National Socialism and which goals the forces controlling Trump are trying to accomplish. In quite different times, the mission to be accomplished remains the same: To promote Totalitarianism and War, in order to confront challenges and to stabilize Western Capitalist Imperialist domination.
There is nothing original here, they did it with Opium Wars, they did it with Hitler’s campaign, they did it every time they could and they had to.
But there is a huge difference also. In the ‘30s, all that seemed much more to be the outcome of objective social processes. Those are also now in action, still a new powerful factor seems to have been added to the equation. The unprecedented, enormous capacity to manipulate persons, small groups or large populations and create even false political realities, by using information technologies, as we have seen in the case of Cambridge Analytica and in other incidents.
For the first time in History, Humanity is now producing the material, scientific and technological tools of a Totalitarianism, which will make Hitler look as an Alchemist, compared to contemporary Chemists. The Empire does not possess only enormous financial means. It can buy also all knowledge, ideas and technologies. It disposes more strategic clarity (smart power) than the other players, it is more resolute than they are and more detached from humanity than any ruling class in Human History. It can use historical examples and try to repeat them in an artificial way. Trump seems to be a kind of Frankestein-President.
A Neocon Conspiracy Behind Trump’s Election
The election of Trump is the result of the convergence of many objective and subjective factors. Still, it is difficult to imagine it possible without a huge Neocon conspiracy. Such a conspiracy was not sufficient, but it was necessary, because without it, it would be just impossible for Trump to overcome the obstacles the US “system” would put to his way to the Presidency. We don’t think that in the country of John Kennedy and his brother or of Martin Luther King, it is possible for somebody to become President only based on popular support, without commanding a strong behind the scenes protection and support. Who, and for what reason, except the Neocons, can be the force which provided Trump with such protection and support?
This huge conspiracy which we believe has existed behind Trump’s election, included also two equally important “sub-conspiracies”: First to make it look as a result of Russian “intervention”, with the results we all know. Second, to persuade Russians Trump is indeed their friend, or at least, his election can help their interests. Especially the forces inside Russia which want desperately to be included in the Global West, but they are unable to find a way. The fact that Trump was probably, in a way, really, a friend of Russia, does not alter anything to this analysis, because his feelings do not play any role in his policies, on the contrary they make him more vulnerable. The real or supposed friendship of Trump to Russia has in fact helped and is helping the conspiracy to attain its aims, including its anti-Russian ones!