Friday, May 11, 2018

Donald Trump’s Neocon Conversion was Predictable


By Kurt Nimmo - May 11, 2018 at 11:43AM

undefined

During the election, I wrote a little ebook titled “Donald Trump’s War on Islam.” In addition to pointing out Trump’s pandering to Islamophobia, I wrote about his association with a number of neocons, including Frank Gaffney and John Bolton, who is now his national security adviser. “I think John Bolton’s a good man,” Trump told the Hugh Hewitt Show. 

“I watched him yesterday, actually, and he was very good in defending me in some of my views, and very, very strong. And I’ve always liked John Bolton. Well, we are thinking about it, Hugh [nominating Bolton as secretary of state]. I will say that. We are thinking about it. I mean, the negative is what I told you. But we are seriously thinking about it.”

That didn’t fly because Congress would never vote to approve Bolton, same as they wouldn’t approve his nomination as ambassador to the United Nations during the reign of Bush. Instead, he assumed the role of national security adviser, a position that doesn’t require congressional approval.

In August 2016, when I published my ebook, I had no idea just how far Trump would go. He is now almost entirely in the neocon camp and Zionist sheep dipped—although the hardline neocons like Bill Kristol and Max Boot stubbornly reject him, mostly because he is an outlier, didn’t come up through the ranks, and is unpolished and anti-intellectual.

But it’s not merely the neocons. 

It’s also the Israelis. 

Bibi Netanyahu and the Likud party fanatics—hardcore Zionists—are welcomed by Trump. He has adopted their ideology, most likely as a result of the influence of his son-in-law, Jared Kushner. The Trump administration is more pro-Israel than the Bush administration. Not even George Bush and his neocons signed off on making Jerusalem the capitol of Israel. 

Bush followed the lead of the neocons and destroyed Iraq—a longtime Israeli goal, along with destroying Syria, which Obama tried to accomplish, although his relationship with the Israelis was tepid at best. Instead, Obama destroyed Libya, which wasn’t a top objective of the Likudnik Israelis, not that they objected to another Muslim biting the dust. 

Trump is going for the prime Likudnik objective—taking out Iran. 

Iran, of course, poses absolutely no threat to America. It does, however, challenge Israel for the role as Middle East Hegemon. Because of this and its strident anti-Zionist rhetoric and ostensible support for the Palestinians, it has to be taken down. 

As I wrote earlier today, we will now witness John Bolton’s Plan B—stirring up ethnic division inside Iran, directly aiding domestic groups opposed to the rule of the mullahs, and ultimately installing the wacky MEK cult as the preferred client.

The details weren’t known two years ago when I wrote my ebook—but the general outline, a rough sketch was. 

It was obvious when Trump talked about torturing suspected terrorists, killing their families, stealing oil in Iraq and Syria, and in general raising hell in the Arab and Muslim Middle East, remarks that fall comfortably within the parameters of the Zionist neocon agenda.

Reprinted with permission from Another Day in the Empire.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Monday, May 7, 2018

The Right to 100 Percent Security?


By Michael S. Rozeff - May 07, 2018 at 02:11PM

undefined

The basic fault in the Bush Doctrine and in Norman Podhoretz’s praise of it is that they both assume a state’s or people’s right to perfect security or 100 percent safety. This is impossible, because not everyone can simultaneously have such a right and still remain free.

To get 100 percent security, a state has to defeat and control its neighbors and eventually every last one of them. Even then, it won’t be 100 percent secure until it controls every rebellious element under its flag.

Extremism in defense of 100 percent security is a vice: wicked and immoral behavior. Such extremism stems from an erroneous moral philosophy in which one does not allow equal freedom to one’s neighbors, but instead one exercises power over them in the name of one’s own false conception of one’s right.

As an important example of this thinking and how it can lead to war, consider Israel and Iran. Trump and Pompeo have both made statements that support the neoconservative position of Norman Podhoretz. His position and theirs contain the flaw of making extreme demands for the extreme security of Israel that cannot be met without making war against Iran and suppressing their rights.

Here’s Norman Podhoretz’s thinking about Iran and Israel on December 11, 2013. The JPCOA nuclear deal was signed on 14 July 2015.

Podhoretz wrote:
I remain convinced that containment is impossible, from which it follows that the two choices before us are not war vs. containment but a conventional war now or a nuclear war later.
Podhoretz was wrong in thinking “containment is impossible.” Being wrong on Iran is what he always has been, simply because he takes the position that Iran must grovel before Israel and abjectly kowtow to every Israeli demand; and even that would not be enough. He rules out containment from the get-go because to him it requires the surrender of Iran. He wants 100 percent security for Israel.

In the real world, Iran signed the JPCOA agreement on July 14, 2015. Iran agreed to significant restrictions and inspections, which I quote:
Under the agreement, Iran agreed to eliminate its stockpile of medium-enriched uranium, cut its stockpile of low-enriched uranium by 98 percent, and reduce by about two-thirds the number of its gas centrifuges for 13 years. For the next 15 years, Iran will only enrich uranium up to 3.67 percent. Iran also agreed not to build any new heavy-water facilities for the same period of time. Uranium-enrichment activities will be limited to a single facility using first-generation centrifuges for 10 years.
Iran shelved its nuclear program since the agreement went into effect. The IAEA found no violations except some minor technical one. Iran still wants the agreement. Israel still has its nuclear arsenal, and Iran still has no nuclear bombs.

Podhoretz in 2013 could not imagine anything other than war on Iran for a good reason. He believes that Israel won’t ever be 100 percent safe until it militarily destroys the Iranian regime and puts in place a regime that is under Israel’s control. He wants 100 percent security for Israel, and the only way to assure it is complete military victory over Iran. Any degree of independence of any Iran regime will not suffice to achieve his goal.

This position is completely unreasonable, because no state has a right to demand 100 percent security for itself by suppressing other states, plus doing so forcibly. One has no right to achieve perfect security by means of aggression. One has to live with risks, threats, and possibilities, if others are to have the same freedoms and rights. The belief in this false right of one’s own security by means of invading the rights of one’s neighbors is the flaw in the Bush Doctrine. It is why Podhoretz praised the Bush Doctrine so much. It fit his own flawed philosophy. Both men, assured in their own minds that they are entitled to 100 percent security, are willing by any means of force to remove all possibility of future, current and incipient threats, even if this entails massive destruction of the rights of others.

The extreme position of Podhoretz is also the position of a cluster of neoconservatives who want American power to dominate the world. Trump and Pompeo at this moment have articulated positions that may easily tip over into full-scale war against Iran, because if they destroy what is now effective containment, what other course is left? Will Iran grovel and abjectly give in? Maybe, but it’s not likely.

Podhoretz added:
Given how very unlikely it is that President Obama, despite his all-options-on-the-table protestations to the contrary, would ever take military action, the only hope rests with Israel. If, then, Israel fails to strike now, Iran will get the bomb. And when it does, the Israelis will be forced to decide whether to wait for a nuclear attack and then to retaliate out of the rubble, or to pre-empt with a nuclear strike of their own. But the Iranians will be faced with the same dilemma. Under these unprecedentedly hair-trigger circumstances, it will take no time before one of them tries to beat the other to the punch.
Podhoretz clearly assumes that Iran is irrational, where he says that Israel can’t wait for a nuclear attack. He assumes that Iran is willing to destroy Israel even if it itself is destroyed by Israel’s nuclear arsenal. What’s more likely is that each will deter the other. If Iran has already negotiated and signed an agreement and is abiding by it, isn’t this evidence that Iran is rational? Don’t we have more such evidence in the tolerance with which Iran treats its Jewish population? And if Israel is rational, could she not make concessions to Iran or both make concessions such as to enhance the safety of both countries? The thing that’s irrational is attempting to get 100 percent safety for oneself.

Podhoretz concluded:
And so my counsel to proponents of the new consensus is to consider the unspeakable horrors that would then be visited not just on Israel and Iran but on the entire region and beyond. The destruction would be far worse than any imaginable consequences of an Israeli conventional strike today when there is still a chance to put at least a temporary halt, and conceivably even a permanent one, to the relentless Iranian quest for the bomb.
Here again, events proved him wrong. An agreement was reached that created a significant halt in Iran’s nuclear research and development. Its quest for the bomb turned out not to be as relentless as Podhoretz imagined it to be.

Did Podhoretz think that Israel could strike Iran with conventional weapons without causing Iran to declare war on Israel? If so, he thought that Iran would be rational in its non-retaliation because it would face Israel’s nuclear superiority. What if Iran reacted in the irrational way that Podhoretz earlier imagined was in its character? What if Iran retaliated? Then Israel might attack Iran with nuclear weapons; and it would almost surely attack if Israelis were dying or losses mounting. In other words, Podhoretz countenances a holocaust in Iran in order to assure Israel’s 100 percent safety. This is what follows from an erroneous moral philosophy in which 100 percent safety is regarded as a rightful goal that permits one to use force against one’s neighbors.

Reprinted with permission from LewRockwell.com.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Bibi Netanyahu’s Iran Nuke Show


By Kurt Nimmo - May 01, 2018 at 02:19PM

undefined

Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repackaged a cobbled together pack of old lies. He is trying to sell it to gullible Americans as new and startling revelations about an Iranian nuclear program that doesn’t exist. 

Bibi gave a video presentation at the Israeli defense ministry yesterday. He had some props and a big screen for slides. He warned about Iran’s “Amad Plan” to secretly and illegally manufacture nuclear bombs. 

It was a rather clumsy sleight of hand. A closer look reveals the information he presented is old stuff repackaged. The IAEA knew about Amad in 2011. The international organization declared several times Iran does not have a nuclear weapons program and stopped doing nuke research back in 2003.

He sold a pack of lies to Congress back in 2003 in the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq.

Bibi is trying to sell this old and known material as a pack of new revelations and thus build up a consensus to dump the JCPOA. It looks like Trump might use this recycled crap to disavow the nuke deal next month. 

There has been a lot of traffic back and forth between Washington and Tel Aviv by Pompeo, Bolton, and Israeli officials over the last few days.

Prior to Bibi’s show, a huge explosion in Hama, Syria took out around 30 Iranians and Syrians at the Brigade 47 arms depot. The explosion was recorded as a 2.6 magnitude earthquake. Another attack hit near a military air base in Aleppo province, according to reports

In the next few days, something big is likely to happen in Syria or Iran, possibly both. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton are fanatical neocons determined to take Iran down a few pegs, if not give it the Iraq treatment, as the neocons have planned for a couple decades now.

Ditto Syria.

Question is, what will Russia do if Israel, along with the United States and the Saudis, pull off a full-fledged attack to destroy Syria and give Bashar al-Assad the Gaddafi treatment? 

Dumping the JCPOA is the first step. The Iranians swear they will to do something drastic if Trump cans the agreement, even going so far as to pull out of the NPT. 

This will give Israel the excuse it needs to bomb Iran’s civilian nuclear sites. But Israel can’t do this. They don’t have the resources, and can’t proceed without help from their friends in Washington.

That will, of course, mean a wider war in the region. Russia will be caught in the middle. Will they sit back and let it happen? If they react, will it precipitate the Big One, World War III?

Stay tuned.

Reprinted with permission from KurtNimmo.blog.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Monday, April 23, 2018

The Neocons Are Selling Koolaid Again!


By Col. W. Patrick Lang - April 23, 2018 at 10:20AM

undefined

In 2004 I published an article in the journal, Middle East Policy that was entitled “Drinking the Koolaid.” The article reviewed the process by which the neocon element in the Bush Administration seized control of the process of policy formation and drove the United States in the direction of invasion of Iraq and the destruction of the apparatus of the Iraqi state. They did this through manipulation of the collective mental image Americans had of Iraq and the supposed menace posed by Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Not all the people who participated in this process were neocon in their allegiance but there were enough of them in the Bush Administration to dominate the process. Neoconism as it has evolved in American politics is a close approximation of the imperialist political faction that existed in the time of President William McKinley and the Spanish-American War. Barbara Tuchman described this faction well in “The Proud Tower.”

Such people, then and now, fervently believe in the Manifest Destiny of the United States as mankind’s best hope of a utopian future and concomitantly in the responsibility of the United States to lead mankind toward that future. Neocons believe that inside every Iraqi, Filipino or Syrian there is an American waiting to be freed from the bonds of tradition, local culture and general backwardness. For people with this mindset the explanation for the continuance of old ways lies in the oppressive and exploitative nature of rulers who block the “progress” that is needed. The solution for the imperialists and neocons is simple. Local rulers must be removed as the principal obstacle to popular emulation of Western and especially American culture and political forms. In the run up to the invasion of Iraq I was often told by leading neocon figures that the Muslims and particularly the Iraqis had no culture worth keeping and that once we had created new facts, (a Karl Rove quote) these people would quickly abandon their old ways and beliefs as they sought to become something like Americans. This notion has one major flaw. It is not necessarily correct. Often the natives are willing to fight you long and hard to retain their own ways. In the aftermath of the Spanish-American War the US acquired the Philippine Islands and sought to make the islands American in all things. The result was a terrible war against Filipino nationalists who did not want to follow the example of the “shining city on a hill.” No, the “poor fools” wanted to go their own way in their own way. The same thing happened in Iraq after 2003. The Iraqis rejected occupation and American “reform” of their country and a long and bloody war ensued.

The neocons believe so strongly that America must lead the world and mankind forward that they accept the idea that the achievement of human progress justifies any means needed to advance that goal. In the case of the Iraq invasion the American people were lectured endlessly about the bestialities of Saddam’s government. The bestialities were impressive but the constant media display of these horrors was not enough to persuade the American people to accept war. From the bestialities meme the neocons moved on to the WMD meme. The Iraqi government had a nuclear weapons program before the First Gulf War but that program had been thoroughly destroyed in the inspection regime that followed Iraq’s defeat and surrender. This was widely known in the US government because US intelligence agencies had cooperated fully with the international inspectors in Iraq and in fact had sent the inspectors to a long list of locations at which the inspectors destroyed the program. I was instrumental in that process.

After 9/11 the US government knew without any doubt that the Iraqi government did not have a nuclear weapons program, but that mattered not at all to the neocons. As Paul Wolfowitz infamously told the US Senate “we chose to use the fear of nuclear weapons because we knew that would sell.” Once that decision was made an endless parade of administration shills appeared on television hyping the supposed menace of Iraqi nuclear weapons. Vice President Cheney and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice were merely the most elevated in position of the many vendors of the image of the “mushroom shaped cloud.”

And now we have the case of Syria and its supposed chemical weapons and attacks. After the putative East Gouta chemical attack of 2013, an OPCW program removed all the chemical weapons to be found in Syria and stated its belief that there were no more in the country. In April of 2017 the US-Russian de-confliction process was used to reach agreement on a Syrian Air Force strike in the area of Khan Sheikoon in southern Idlib Province. This was a conventional weapons attack and the USAF had an unarmed reconnaissance drone in the area to watch the strike go in against a storage area. The rebel run media in the area then claimed the government had attacked with the nerve gas Sarin, but no proof was ever offered except film clips broadcast on social media. Some of the film clips from the scene were ludicrous. Municipal public health people were filmed at the supposed scene standing around what was said to be a bomb crater from the “sarin attack.” Two public health men were filmed sitting on the lip of the crater with their feet in the hole. If there had been sarin residue in the hole they would have quickly succumbed to the gas. No impartial inspection of the site was ever done, but the Khan Sheikoon “gas attack” has become through endless repetition a “given” in the lore of the “constant Syrian government gas attacks against their own civilians.”

On the 4th of April it is claimed that the Syrian Government, then in the process of capturing the town of Douma caused chlorine gas to be dropped on the town killing and wounding many. Chlorine is not much of a war gas. It is usually thought of as an industrial chemical, so evidently to make the story more potent it is now suggested that perhaps sarin was also used.

No proof that such an attack occurred has been made public. None! The Syrian and Russian governments state that they want the site inspected. On the 15th of April US Senator Angus King (I) of Maine told Jake Tapper on SOTU that as of that date the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence had not been given any proof by the IC or Trump Administration that such an attack had occurred. “They have asserted that it did” he said.

The US, France and the UK struck Syria with over a hundred cruise missiles in retaliation for this supposed attack but the Administration has not yet provided any proof that the Syrian attack took place.

I am told that the old neocon crew argued as hard as possible for a disabling massive air and missile campaign intended to destroy the Syrian government’s ability to fight the mostly jihadi rebels. John Bolton, General (ret.) Jack Keane and many other neocons argued strongly for this campaign as a way to reverse the outcome of the civil war. James Mattis managed to obtain President Trump’s approval for a much more limited and largely symbolic strike but Trump was clearly inclined to the neocon side of the argument. What will happen next time?

Colonel W. Patrick Lang is a retired senior officer of U.S. Military Intelligence and U.S. Army Special Forces (The Green Berets). He served in the Department of Defense both as a serving officer and then as a member of the Defense Senior Executive Service for many years

Reprinted with permission from Unz.com.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Bombing Syria: Trump Earns His Neocon Gold Star


By Kurt Nimmo - April 14, 2018 at 01:08PM

undefined

It’s official. Donald Trump is now a full-blown neocon.

This was obvious even before he appointed the war criminal John Bolton to be his senior advisor. In fact, as predicted before he was elected, it was inevitable he would join the neocon club, although most neocons dislike him, just like the establishment dislikes him -- not because he won’t follow instructions, but because he’s an interloper, an outlier, somebody who didn’t come up through the ranks, never mind he’s moving the agenda forward.

Trump earned his gold star on Friday night. He violated the Constitution, didn’t bother with the United Nations, and bombed Syria based on a lie. That’s pure neocon.

However, after the dust settled, it was apparent his multi-million dollar bombing raid didn’t really accomplish much.

John McCain was appreciative, but said Trump needs to do much more—not only in Syria, but in the entire region. McCain’s buddy, Lindsey Graham, said there should be a “three strikes and you’re out” approach to Bashar al-Assad. Because he responded to the attempt to undermine his government and managed to defeat the US-Saudi backed Salafi heads choppers—with the help of Russia and Iran—it would be okay if the US or one of its proxies killed him, maybe in Gadaffi fashion.

Top neocon Bill Kristol didn’t say much. He merely posted three flags. I guess that’s his way of saying he supported the illegal attack without mentioning Trump. Bill led the “Never Trump” movement and pushed a former CIA guy during the election. Kristol will never admit Trump is now a neocon, at least in spirit. Trump didn’t come up through the ranks, he wasn’t a senior fellow at one of the think tanks.

Max Boot and other neocons didn’t say anything—not because they don’t support taking out Syria, but rather because Trump is doing it and most of them can’t stand him.

Meanwhile, Richard Haass, boss over at the Council on Foreign relations, said the illegal bombing raid was “legitimate,” but more bombing and killing must be done.

Trump earned his neocon gold star, albeit begrudgingly, and his base, what’s left of it, is grousing and grumbling over serial betrayals.

It’s not over, of course. It won’t be over until al-Assad is removed or killed and a malleable puppet put into place. Trump and his brain—the mustachioed bulldog John Bolton—will contrive another chlorine attack and it will be off to the races again.

Reprinted with permission from Another Day in the Empire.


from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Monday, April 2, 2018

Memo to Lindsey Graham on Syria


By Michael S. Rozeff - April 02, 2018 at 05:11PM

undefined

Senator Graham:

Your recent views on Syria, expressed here, are mistaken and confused.
If we withdrew our troops anytime soon ISIS would come back…
This prediction is mistaken. If ISIS reconstitutes, the Syrian coalition (Syria, Syrian Kurds, Hezbollah, Iran and Russia) will defeat it again. Remember, “ISIS has suffered consecutive defeats at the hands of separate but simultaneous offensives in Iraq and Syria by the Russian-backed Syrian forces and allied militias as well as US-backed Iraqi and Syrian fighters.”
If we withdrew our troops anytime soon…the war between Turkey and the Kurds would get out of hand…
You are confused and mistaken. You appear to have forgotten that the US supplied arms to Kurds, while irking Turkey. You forget about the border force: “US-led coalition helps to build new Syrian force, angering Turkey.” The US precipitated the Turkish invasion against the Kurds in Syria. It is because US troops are there aiding the Kurds that this facet of their long-running war began. This conflict has been going on since 1978. The US presence has only made matters worse.
If we withdrew our troops anytime soon…you would be giving Damascus to the Iranians without an American presence. Russia and Iran would dominate Syria.
This is wild exaggeration. If Americans leave Syria, then Assad can tone down the coalition, which means the Iranian presence will recede. Russia and Iran didn’t dominate Syria before 2011, even if they maintained friendly relations. Obama’s support for ending Assad’s reign facilitated the rise of ISIS and motivated the closer support and presence of both Russia and Iran. You have matters backwards, Senator Graham. The American presence draws both Russia and Iran in to Syria.
We got ISIS on the ropes. You want to let them off the ropes, remove American soldiers.
It’s not true that “We [Americans] got ISIS on the ropes.” It was not a single-handed affair. Assad’s coalition forces did most of the vital heavy lifting. American soldiers can go home. If Assad’s battle-hardened military can clean up Ghouta, it can clean up remaining ISIS pockets.

Senator, you raise this concern: “There are over 3,000 ISIS fighters still roaming around Syria.” Maybe so, but they are out in desert areas. They are not currently strategic threats to the Assad regime or to the region. Assad’s using his forces where they count the most right now. ISIS is not such a big bad bogeyman that it calls for American forces to intervene in Syria indefinitely.

Senator, the statement of yours that most genuinely reflects your feelings is your allusion to Russia and Iran having a presence in Syria but not the US. You can’t stand the idea of somehow “losing” Syria or not “gaining” Syria or not breaking it up into pieces.

Senator, your attitude reflects a view that Syria is not a country of the Syrians, by the Syrians, and for the Syrians. You treat it as land that’s up for grabs among other powers. You treat its peoples as pawns in a big power game. Syria, however, has a history that goes back thousands of years. “The Greek name appears to correspond to Phoenician ʾšr “Assur”, ʾšrym “Assyrians”, recorded in the 8th century BC Çineköy inscription. Writing in the 5th century BC, Herodotus stated that those called Syrians by the Greeks were called Assyrians by themselves and in the East.”

Senator, the US loses nothing by leaving Syria. If you are really concerned about oil security, it doesn’t require invasions of Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Syria to obtain that. It doesn’t require arming Saudi Arabia or invading Iran. It doesn’t require utterly absurd amounts of money ($2 for each and every gallon of gasoline) spent supposedly to protect foreign oil. All that oil security from Saudi Arabia requires is a clear statement of US protection of the oil-bearing territories and sovereignty over them, even if their cash flows go to the Saudis.

Republished with permission from LewRockwell.com.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Nikki Haley’s Compulsion Flouts the Law of Nations


By Michael S. Rozeff - March 13, 2018 at 02:49PM

undefined

Flip Wilson had a comedy routine “The Devil Made Me Do It”. Nikki Haley is far from funny when she uses the same kind of excuse, telling us that the US is prepared to attack Syria again. Why? Compulsion, or the devil made me do it. In her words: “…there are times when states are compelled to take their own action.”

Is the US also compelled to ally with Saudi Arabia in its brutal bombings and embargo/blockade in Yemen? Is the US compelled to aid Israel when it brutally invades Gaza? Was the US compelled to attack and destroy Libya? Was the US compelled to attack and destroy Iraq? Was the US compelled to destroy the Taliban government in Afghanistan?

If the US claims the moral high ground to justify attacks on Syria, is this the same moral ground and compulsion that justified its attacks on Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Yemen? But such compulsions are no justifications at all. “The devil made me do it” is no different from “The angel made me do it” or “God made me do it”. All are non-justifications, just empty childish excuses. We human beings cannot blame devils, angels or Gods for what we do. Freedom to choose and act is an essential part of our makeup, and no devil, angel or God can be held responsible for this freedom or its consequences when we use it. If they can be held responsible, not each of us, and we lack such primary freedom that’s beyond any devil or any God, then what? Are we machines ruled by predetermined causes in some sort of choreographed and senseless lives? In that case, the result is nihilism. Our freedom to act may be an illusion, but if it is, it’s an illusion we can be sure of, a very convincing one.

If compulsion is a justification for bombing another nation, why condemn and sanction Russia over Ukraine? Couldn’t the Russians argue that they felt compelled to interfere to save Russian-speaking people from being oppressed by neo-Nazi battalions? Couldn’t environmentalist wackos justify their bombings by their compulsion to act against climate-change deniers? Couldn’t FBI officials justify their coup against Trump by being “compelled to take their own action” against the prospective great disaster of his presidency and its irreparable harm?

Couldn’t Nikki Haley have found a better excuse than compulsion? If compulsion is a ruling principle in international relations, then what nation may not have the excuse to flout international law and interfere with another nation?

There is a body of international law that governs international relations. It is not perfect and its enforcement is a delicate matter, admittedly, but it is better than jungle law or “law” generated by compulsion, strong feelings, red lines and feelings of moral obligation, all of which lead to chaos and mass destruction. In 1758, Emer de Vattel’sLaw of Nations” has a section on p. 265 labeled “§7. But not by force.” It begins
But though a nation be obliged to promote, as far as lies in its power, the perfection of others, it is not entitled forcibly to obtrude these good offices on them. Such an attempt would be a violation of their natural liberty. In order to compel any one to receive a kindness, we must have an authority over him; but nations are absolutely free and independent (Prelim. §4). Those ambitious Europeans who attacked the American nations, and subjected them to their greedy dominion, in order, as they pretended, to civilise them, and cause them to be instructed in the true religion, — those usurpers, I say, grounded themselves on a pretext equally unjust and ridiculous.
Vattel argues for a moral obligation for one nation to help another nation under some circumstances, but it may not do so “forcibly“. Nikki Haley’s compulsion to bomb Syria for the good of Syrian rebels and some Syrians factually speaking will not be “a kindness”. Besides taking many lives and wounding others, wrecking families and economies, destroying order as in Iraq and Libya, and opening the way to extremist bombings, the US destroys whole cities and ruins infrastructure that took decades to construct. Even overlooking all the evils the US does in the name of good, the US has no authority over Syria or Syrians of any stripe and authority is essential if such attacks are not to violate the natural liberty of Syrians, which means their existence as a free and independent nation.

What does Nikki Haley acknowledge or respect of the law of nations? Apparently nothing, or she wouldn’t have said that the US could be “compelled” to bomb Syria. Compulsion is no more than the law of savage beasts, and not even up to that standard; and she shares this lack of regard for the law of nations with Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, all of whom have smashed international law under false and phony pretenses, in its name, or in the name of an oppressed people, or in the name of enforcing law, or of doing something good like removing a dictator, or of stopping weapons of destruction, or even of defending America, which wasn’t even remotely the case.

Americans acting through the US government have no right to inflict so-called “good”, which is far more frequently evil anyway, on any people or portion of a people of another nation. For the US Ambassador to the U.N. to argue that “states are compelled to take their own [interfering] action” is an insult to international law and relations, and yet it perpetuates the thinking and tragically the very bloody action at the highest levels of the US government that have gone on for far too many years. Is it not time to see and say clearly that no nation is above the law of nations, and that no nation can enforce its perverted version of that law in the name of a compulsion or even a strong feeling of moral obligation?

Reprinted with permission from LewRockwell.com.

from Ron Paul Institute NeoCon Watch

via IFTTT