Saturday, October 25, 2008
A foreign policy for Obama posted by Richard SeymourI know that all would-be potentates at all levels read my blog devotedly, if not religiously. Naturally, I ignore the noisome little grunts most of the time. But this is one occasion on which I shall have to disclose the secret to America's future foreign policy comportment for the most likely President-elect come November, BHO. I have to because, as is so often the case, this upstart doesn't even understand what is in America's interests (I would not expect any other concern to enter into the discussion). Here are three policies that Obama should pursue:
1) Stop trying to expand NATO. Shut it down if possible. It is a danger to the Euro-American Alliance - every expansion riles the Caucasian bear and draws in potentially volatile units. It introduces discord where American hegemony requires harmony. If even Silvio Berlusconi, the most pro-American political leader in Europe, sides with the Russkies, you have problems.
2) Make nice to Chavez. Venezuela may have a social revolution, or it may not. But at the moment, it is still open to US capital on revised terms, and you had better take those terms because Latin America is no longer just a plantation outback. And even the Bolsheviks were open to American business, so even social revolution need not be a disaster. Better kiss up to Raul Castro too - he has big oilfields now, and you know that your 'clean coal'/nuclear energy ruse isn't going to last a day once you're elected.
3) Withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan. The US has already admitted it can't hold Iraq without the acquiescence of significant (in both senses) layers of the population. That is why the occupation forces had to cut deals with the Sunni resistance fighters and then the Mahdi Army. And it's still no better than it was in 2004/5. That was hardly a sterling moment as I recall. So give up trying to impose a humiliating Status of Forces Agreement, and negotiate an expeditious withdrawal. Secondly, talk tough on Afghanistan and Pakistan if you must, but you and Brzezinski know that you can't afford to have Central Asia go up in flames. And there is sufficient economic and social 'dislocation' there to bring about a mass revolt should you try to expand the war into Pakistan, as the prevailing imperial logic dictates. You can weather the shrill chorus of 'surrender', especially if - as is anticipated - the Senate enters 'filibuster-proof' territory. Just cut a deal with the current vicious warlords and the Taliban, tell Dyncorps where to get off, and allow the Afghan people to regroup and resist on their own terms, without American bombs falling all around them.
Obama can listen to the silver-haired bagpipe that he has chosen for a VP if he likes, but I'm trying to help the guy. Be a wise imperialist, I warn him, or we - the royal we, the editorial we, and the collective we - will be obliged to do something unconscionable.