September 2008 Economic Crisis and Paralyses

My piece on the September, 2008 crisis was written in end March 2008 based on analyses and forecasts by non-corporate economists and think tanks, mostly in US and even Europe, although my first piece, 'The Decline of the American Century’ for Asia Times was published on 11 September, 2002, the first anniversary of the attacks on the symbols of US economic and military might. There is now a growing body of data and experts who believe that it was a false flag operation or at least allowed to happen to provide an excuse to first invade Afghanistan and establish its hold on south west Asia and continue to threaten Russia and China and for transport of energy via Afghanistan and Pakistan from central Asia to the Indian ocean and South Asia, deficit in energy. This still remains Washington’s core objective.

It also provided a trumped up pretext alongwith fake accusations and unadulterated lies to invade Iraq illegally, in the words of UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, in a barbaric show of ‘shock and awe’ for the natives .The US then spent $600 billion on its military, while Iraq spent $ 5 billion and its defense and human needs had been degraded by UN sanctions, because of which half a million Iraqi children died, forcing two UN administrators of ‘Food for Oil’ program to resign in disgust. The death of children was described by Madeiline not so (Al ) Bright as worth it. But US led West lectures the world on its so called culture and civilization. Occupation of Iraq for its energy resources and for control of the region was planned much earlier and publicly proclaimed in the “Project for the New American Century’( PNAC)

PNAC is a Washington-based neo-cons think tank created in 1997 with the objective of establishing a global American empire to bend the will of all nations. So, in order to create the global empire Washington must:

  • Reposition permanently based forces to Southern Europe, Southeast Asia and the Middle East;
  • Modernize U.S. forces, including enhancing our fighter aircraft, submarine and surface fleet capabilities;
  • Develop and deploy a global missile defense system, and develop a strategic dominance of space;
  • Control the "International Commons" of cyberspace;
  • Increase defense spending to a minimum of 3.8 percent of gross domestic product, up from the 3 percent currently spent.

Most ominously, this PNAC document described four "Core Missions" for the American military. The US forces must be able to "fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars," and to "perform the 'constabulary' duties associated with shaping the security environment in critical regions." (What more proof of hubris!) Note that the US military must fight these wars one way or the other to establish American dominance for all to see i.e. wars of choice, illegal if need be as the invasion of Iraq and its brutal occupation. Iraq’s economy has been destroyed, its environment poisoned, perhaps forever with unlawful use of depleted Uranium arms and ammunition. Even barbaric Halagu Khan would concede that Americans have done a more thorough job than him. US led corporate media and its copycat Indian media rarely refer to the colossal disaster brought upon the hapless people of Iraq.

Some consequences of invasion of Iraq and its brutal invasion, in brief, are:

  • Number Of Iraqis Killed In US War And Occupation Of Iraq "1,455,590" (One million widows created along with 4 million orphans, as well as 5 million refugees inside Iraq and outside)
  • Number of U.S. Military Personnel Sacrificed (Officially acknowledged) In U.S. War And Occupation of Iraq 4,780
  • Number of U.S. Military Personnel injured, maimed and psychologically disturbed with suicides, homicides over 80,000
  • Number Of International Occupation Force Troops killed In Afghanistan: 2,541
  • Cost of War in Iraq & Afghanistan
  • Total; $1,210,450,550,239 (Over $ 780 billion in Iraq and over $420 billion in Afghanistan)

Nathan Hughes recently outlined in Stratfor, a covert intelligence think tank, the massive logistics problems and cost of US mission in Afghanistan, one of the most isolated places on Earth, and a landlocked country almost in the heart of Central Asia. Hundreds of shipping containers and fuel trucks must enter the country every day from Pakistan (hence Washington’s reliance on Islamabad) and from the north to sustain the nearly 150,000 US and allied forces stationed in Afghanistan, about half the total number of Afghan security forces. Supplying a single gallon of gasoline in Afghanistan reportedly costs the US military an average of $400, while sustaining a single US soldier runs around $1 million a year (by contrast, sustaining an Afghan soldier costs about $12,000 a year).

The author having spent most of his diplomatic career in middle East with a ringside view from Amman of the 1991 war to vacate Iraq’s occupation of Kuwait and ten years in Ankara , has written over 50 in depth articles for the world media on US led illegal invasion of Iraq and its occupation, predicting in July 2003 that Paul Bremer’s regime will end up like Sir Percy Cox’s in 20th century after WWI and forecasting in January, 2004 that an Iraqi resistance will emerge as in Turkey under Kemal Ataturk and in Algeria under FNL after WWII, at a time when Western media was celebrating and gloating at ‘the End of history’ and of transforming Iraq into a subservient protectorate like Germany and Japan. WWII was over in 1945 but US GIs remain stationed in the two countries. Occupation troops do not leave unless forced to.

Looking at the blunders of George Bush administration, under the mal-influence of his vice president Dick Cheney, surrounded and nose led by a cabal of neo-cons with their racist Straussian policies, which kept the former Texas governor away from possible advice from his father George Bush Sr., and advisers, I wrote my 2nd piece on US decline ‘Beginning of the end of the American Empire’, based on how the Ottoman empire was saved; citing an example of 15th century Ottoman Sultan Murat II who had arranged for his wild and disobedient brat Mehmet II, not the favorite son , to be trained in the art of governing as Sultan at Edirne under an able Grand Vizier. But Mehmet II fell under the unwholesome influences, fought with the Grand Vizier and the military Janissaries rebelled. Before Mehmet II could create further mess, Murat II returned from Manisa, where he had retired for spiritual pursuits and took back the reins of the empire.

But alas, George Bush, sidelined secretary of state Gen Colin Powell and succeeded in making an unholy mess and even Papa George W. H Bush prodded bipartisan Baker-Hamilton Commission, failed to salvage the remains of his son's Presidency, or to arrest the fast decline of the hyper power. But still with enormous powers of destruction, US continues to spread destruction around the world, the latest victims being the people of Libya. And the serial US perpetrator now in Barack Obama, a Nobel Peace Prize awardee to boot.

Extracts from The Decline and Coming Fall of US Hegemony, March 30, 2008

The most frightening forecast so far comes from the Global Europe Anticipation Bulletin (GEAB), "The end of the third quarter of 2008 (thus late September, a mere seven months from now) will be marked by a new tipping point in the unfolding of the global systemic crisis. 

"At that time indeed, the cumulated impact of the various sequences of the crisis will reach its maximum strength and affect decisively the very heart of the systems concerned, on the frontline of which (is) the United States, epicenter of the current crisis. 

"In the United States, this new tipping point will translate into - get this - a collapse of the real economy, (the) final socio-economic stage of the serial bursting of the housing and financial bubbles and of the pursuance of the U.S. dollar fall. The collapse of U.S. real economy means the virtual freeze of the American economic machinery: private and public bankruptcies in large numbers, companies and public services closing down." 

"We are not experiencing a "remake" of the 1929 crisis nor a repetition of the 1970s oil crises nor 1987 stock market crisis. What we will have, instead, is truly a global momentous threat - a true turning point affecting the entire planet and questioning the very foundations of the international system upon which the world was organized in the last decades."    

The June Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index for June 2011 showed that housing prices in all but two of the 20 major metro areas it tracks hit new post-bubble lows in March. It signaled a double-dip for the housing sector, where prices have fallen eight straight months. With prices in most places back to 2002 levels, it has wiped out nearly a decade's worth of equity for owners. 

The most depressing part of the report was that house prices have fallen further than during the Great Depression, when they took 19 years to recover their losses. The difference is the U.S. in the1930s was a manufacturing and petroleum superpower facing deflation and underutilized capacity. World War II and the postwar boom fixed that. By themid-2000s, the U.S. economy was housing to a historic degree. It was our last big factory that couldn't be sent to Mexico or China. 

During the last few centuries Western hegemony over the East and South was first exercised by rapacious and brutal European colonialists and then from Washington .After the end of the cold war in the wake of the two World Wars, Western decline is now morphing into a fall because of the forces unleashed by the US led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq and now in Libya. The two debt financed wars have brought US economy to a recession. Forces and changes have been set into motion which will completely alter the existing international financial and strategic structures and result in a new dynamics. 

Contrary to the self-proclaimed congratulatory triumphalism of neo-liberals after the collapse of Communism and Socialism in end 1980s, celebrated from house tops by the so called philosophers, think tanks and analysts with delusions of permanent world domination of Western financiers and corporate houses based on dubious theories of 'the End of History 'or 'the Clash of Civilizations' and even claims of Washington- the new Rome with absolute control the whole thing will end in a blowback. Now, come lately, London and Paris, without much military or financial wherewithal are leading the so called’ humanitarian intervention’ in Libya, which is killing thousands of civilians. 

It would appear that Moscow under Medvedev did not veto the now misused and abused UN Resolution 1973 to let the Euro-Natoget ensnared into the Libyan quagmire. This will divert US and European attention away from Ukraine, Georgia, the Black Sea and Kyrgyzstan. For good effect, the good cop prime minister Putin described the intervention as a crusade and his foreign minister Lavrov keeps on making noises about misinterpretation and misuse of the Resolution.  

Continued to Western Influence in North Africa & Middle East 


More by :  K. Gajendra Singh

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