Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Always Attack the Wrong Country

Chor Boogie
There are numerous tactics available to those who aim to make problems worse while pretending to solve them, but misdirection is always a favorite. The reason to want to make problems worse is that problems are profitable—for someone. And the reason to pretend to be solving them is that causing problems, then making them worse, makes those who profit from them look bad.

In the international arena, this type of misdirection tends to take on a farcical aspect. The ones profiting from the world's problems are the members of the US foreign policy and military establishments, the defense contractors and the politicians around the world, and especially in the EU, who have been bought off by them. Their tactic of misdirection is conditioned by a certain quirk of the American public, which is that it doesn't concern itself too much with the rest of the world. The average member of the American public has no idea where various countries are, can't tell Sweden from Switzerland, thinks that Iran is full of Arabs and can't distinguish any of the countries that end in -stan. And so a handy trick has evolved, which amounts to the following dictum: “Always attack the wrong country.”

Need some examples? After 9/11, which, according to the official story (which is probably nonsense) was carried out by “suicide bombers” (some of them, amusingly, still alive today) who were mostly from Saudi Arabia, the US chose to retaliate by attacking Saudi ArabiaAfghanistan and Iraq.

When Arab Spring erupted (because a heat wave in Russia drove up wheat prices) the obvious place to concentrate efforts, to avoid a seriously bad outcome for the region, was Egypt—the most populous Arab country and an anchor for the entire region. And so the US and NATO decided to attack EgyptLibya.

When things went south in the Ukraine, whose vacillating government couldn't make up its mind whether it wanted to remain within the Customs Union with Russia, its traditional trading partner, or to gamble on signing an agreement with the EU based on vague (and since then broken) promises of economic cooperation, the obvious place to go and try to fix things was the Ukraine. And so the US and the EU decided fix the UkraineRussia, even though Russia is not particularly broken. Russia was not amused; nor is it a country to be trifled with, and so in response the Russians inflicted some serious pain on the Washington establishmentfarmers within the EU.

Who was at fault exceedingly clear once the Ukrainians that managed to get into power (including some very nasty neo-Nazis) started to violate the rights of Ukraine's Russian-speaking majority, including staging some massacres, in turn causing a large chunk of it to hold referendums and vote to secede. (Perhaps you didn't know this, but the majority of the people in the Ukraine are Russian-speakers, and there is just one city of any size—Lvov—that is mostly Ukrainian-speaking. Mind you, I find Ukrainian to be very cute and it makes me smile whenever I hear it. I don't bother speaking it, though, because any Ukrainian with an IQ above bathwater temperature understands Russian.) And so the US and the EU decided to fix things by continuing to put pressure on the UkraineRussia.

When Russia started insisting on a political rather than a military resolution to the crisis in the Ukraine, and helped negotiate the Minsk agreements together with the Ukraine, France and Germany, a similar thing happened. These agreements obligated the Ukrainian government to pass constitutional reforms to grant autonomy to its Russian regions in the east. The Ukrainian government refused to abide by these agreements. As a result, the US and the EU decided to put pressure on the UkrainianRussian government.

When a nasty terrorist group calling itself ISIS and composed of Islamic Salafi/Takfiri extremists started to seize power in large parts of Iraq, and then spread to Syria, something had to be done about it. These extremists were being financed by Turkey (which is still buying oil from them and sheltering them on its territory) and Saudi Arabia. And so the US and NATO decided to put some pressure on Turkey and Saudi ArabiaSyria.

In response to all this foolishness, Russia up and decided to actually go and fix something that was broken: Syria. And now Syria is on the mend, and members the misdirectorate in Washington are left scratching their heads.

So far so good. But this method of pretending to be solving problems by making them worse has some definite downsides.

For one thing, eventually even the dimmest, most geographically challenged bulbs in the general population start to get a clue, and then they start refusing to vote for the establishment candidates. Then it becomes hard to continue with the misdirecting because the people doing the misdirecting are voted out, and (horror of horrors!) somebody who might actually try to fix a problem or two might get voted in.

For another, continually making problems worse by attacking the wrong country tends to eventually make the sheer number problems get completely out of hand. Take the recent massive terror attack in Brussels, down the road from NATO headquarters, for which ISIS took credit. Recently, Europe has been experiencing a large-scale influx of people from the Middle East and North Africa, who have been forced to flee their native lands because of all the previous acts of misdirection, and a fair number of these people are ISIS terrorists. And so, to protect itself, NATO is planning to fight ISIS in EuropeSyria. Also, it is well known that the influx into Europe has been orchestrated by Turkey. In response, the EU has decided to put pressure ongive billions of euros to Turkey and tell Turkey that it is welcome to join the EU.

Lastly, this pattern has an overall momentum that, over time, becomes harder and harder to break. It starts out as just one group of plutocrats doing incredibly vile, underhanded but profitable things; later on, an even bigger group of plutocrats is doing equally vile but now completely idiotic, self-defeating, embarrassing things; and right near the end a really huge group of plutocrats is doing things that are absolutely suicidal—but they can't stop themselves. You should be able to decide for yourselves when that point in time arrives, but I doubt that it is too far in the future.

16 comments :

Jan Schmidt said...

you made my day, thank you dimitri! somehow it is frightingly similar to the last years of socialism in eastern europe. its leaders, nomenklatura, security forces, everyone who had some power, did not change the course.

they believe so hard, they can do no wrong and everything belongs to them. the USA is a prime example of a subverted system that does not work. take flint tap water incident, caused by a politician who had no clue what life essentials really are. for some dozen million dollars to save, he poisoned everybody and everything with lead

btw lead poison was one of the factors in the downfall of the roman empire

it is really nice to see people in the states waking up. trump or sanders, both cannot be bought. there is also a small minority of super rich like nick hanauer who want to better the lives of all and pay taxes.

we will see some amazing and terrifying events in 2016 and 2017. collapse of USA was predicted in 2025, dubya bush accelerated that by 5 years. 2020. now how many years did obama shave off? 2 or 3?

Larkin said...

The most prominent example of a misguided policy that appears to be a failure for most but was actually a success for a hidden few, was the invasion of Iraq and the toppling of Saddam Husain.

As armed resistance melted away, the population readily accepted the American forces entering Baghdad. This could have been it, but US forces along with highly paid mercenary contractors vandalized the entire country being sure to destroy infrastructure ruining the lives of the civilian populous. Paul Bremer fired the Iraqi army and then left massive Iraqi ammo dumps unguarded insuring an insurgency that did not yet exist.

The shocking photos at Abu Ghraib Prison may have even been intentionally leaked by the Pentagon to insure a climate of revenge and retribution.

So in line with Dmitry's article, many strategies that appear to be a failure on the editorial pages may actually be a resounding success for an elite investor class who enrich themselves through war and death.

Google Bob Dylan's 'Masters of War'

Carine Clary said...

Found your comments on Ukrainian language to be pretty funny. As the whole situation in the Ukraine unfolded I would hear people talk about Ukrainians being "forced" to speak Russian etc... Having studied Russian in college I knew there was little difference. We even had a professor who gave us an oral exam where he asked the questions in Ukrainian and we had to answer in Russian. Best of all he didn't tell us this ahead of time, he just started talking and it took a couple of sentences before you realized that something was a bit off. Nevertheless, it was intelligible. In fact, one of my classmates had a terrible hangover but was able to pass the test. When I would tell people this they would all shake their heads sadly & say, no, no, it's not the same. (these were uniformly non speakers of any Slavic language). To the question, 'How could I understand a language I never studied unless it was very similar to a language I did study?' they had no answer. They would just segue to the topic of the Russian "theft" of Crimea babbling network talking points with no apparent knowledge that Crimea had been part of Russia long years before the existence of the U.S. This is basic stuff you can check online in 3 minutes but they never do. However they don't have a problem with their own country which stole land from the British who stole it from the Indians. That doesn't count. Nothing we do ever does.

RML said...

What's on the page here is a perfect blend of craft and art: words and crossed-out words to tell a story. A narrative, though, that may be a bit more of an epitaph than a look through a once-darkened glass.

All us guys way back here scrunched close to the organ, are following along, and chime-in when the choir master finger-wags in our direction. We get it...but what about all those halfalumps occupying the pews below? Other than waiting on silence and for it all of this "preaching" to end, they have no vested interest in homilies that at the very least will help them get their wits back.

It's encouraging to conceptualize "Nature abhorring a vacuum," and that the void within their heads and hearts can be re-filled with logic and foresight. But, excessive excrement is the problem; hence there is no emptiness...and the purgative?

You, high up on the mast, see a more distant horizon than we do down here on our hands and knees scrubbing the deck. You see it coming as plain as day. If they/we can hold on, the approaching heavy weather will flush-out the bowels/bilge…and if we are lucky, a new heading can be plotted.

Fair winds.

StevieFinn said...

A great way of putting it & the same idiocy also applies to the economic priesthood who are busy painting themselves into a very dark deflated corner.

Karl K said...

Brilliant. Thank you.

Too bad most Americans will be unable to comprehend it. This would require an IQ higher than bathwater. Sadly.

NowhereMan said...

I takes a very detailed scorecard (actually, more like a very robust computer database) to keep track of all the players and their agendas these days. What could possibly go wrong?

Helix said...

@Larkin re: Paul Bremer fired the Iraqi army and then left massive Iraqi ammo dumps unguarded insuring an insurgency that did not yet exist.

Yeah, that didn't seem like a very good move to me either. I'm just not sure whether it was incompetence or malicious intent. There's a saying floating around tagged Hanlon's Razor (a take-off on Occam's Razor) that goes something like "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity".

Given the administration at that time, it's really hard to know. On the one hand, we have Cheney, Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld, and Rice. On the other, we have Bush himself, Bremer, and a whole host of other clueless apparatchiks. So on the balance, it's probably best to remember that Hanlon's Razor has a final phrase that is much less-often quoted: ".., but don't rule out malice."

DeVaul said...

Excellent essay!

I'm glad you included the plutocrats (oligarchs) at the end because they are a critical component in the network of misdirection, as they perpetuate some strange scheme by which they loan "money" to the government, which "money" then flows into the coffers of the Pentagon and other government burocrats responsible for the misdirection policies, and then back to the plutocrats in the form of arms sales and other corporate sales to the Pentagon and so forth. A vicious, evil circle that is indeed suicidal in the end.

Also, it does make sense that it starts out with a small group of these sociopaths (time-wise) and then proceeds over time to include more and more until at the end, nearly everyone is involved in some form of criminality just because the massive Codex Americana, extending back some 500 years or more, now easily takes up in printed form at least 5 or more floors of any skyscraper you care to name.

We're all criminals now, even if we don't know it. It's in the regulations -- somewhere. What used to be contained in a single book and perhaps in the minds of some village elders now outstrips the mental capacity of entire regiments of lawyers (who are actually tasked with exploiting them rather than following them).

It's hard to say how America will collapse, but it will collapse.

From my particular position, I have noticed one thing in one area: judges and lawyers no longer even bother with what the law is, as the amount of time it takes to discover it would bankrupt the client, so everything now depends on "donations" to the judge and who has the lawyer with the most "connections". A legal system like that ends up burning and scarring so many innocent people that it now walks around with a bulls-eye on its back (and front), and this nation is heavily armed.

(Special Note: I will not... no, I refuse to apologize for not being able to spell "burocracy" or "burocrat" for my entire life. So there. Deal with it.)

candrich said...

A friend of mine, who was a retired Marine Sargent, told me a story about leading a bunch of green privates on a cross-country ski trip in Alaska. When they were returning to camp the private at the end of the line decided he couldn't go on and sat down. The sargent descended on him with whipping ski poles and extreme verbal abuse and harried him so hard that he was actually the first to reach the camp and the life-saving hot showers. It's amazing how pain and discomfort can get a body off the butt and moving.

Putin was asked recently if there was anything he liked about the American people. He said (paraphrased)that when the American people set themselves a goal they have great creativity in accomplishing it.

The pain and discomfort is on its final approach. Those who don't die will remember how strong and smart they are. The pain-givers will be astounded at the energy and creativity that will explode around them.

Just as Russians around the world are now proud to be Russian: we will once again be able to hold our heads high.

We have a bit of a job to do first.

Roger said...

The people that justify the misdirection, to the extent that they can bother justifying, have enough diplomas from elite institutions to wallpaper the average living room. Now, this may make you question the worth of such highly expensive advanced degrees, but no matter, the time spent at places like Harvard and Yale wasn't for nothing. It gave these people a portfolio of terminology, a manner of speaking with a certain kind of cadence and diction, that lends authority.

So, when these towering intellectuals tell you something that doesn't make a damn bit of sense, when they actually act on the madness, and you look baffled and say something like "huh?", they draw themselves up to a great height, look down their nose and deploy their well rehearsed suite of gobbledegook.

These people think of think of themselves as great men of affairs. Yeah, I know, women too. Either way, do not for a second think that you have it in you to question them. If you dare, they'll adopt a pained expression, pause, look at a spot on the wall behind you and tell you that maybe it's, well, "counter-intuitive". See, this is all the product of great minds that spend countless hours studying such matters.

I have to confess, I'm the inferior in terms of brain power, and maybe because of this short-coming, I haven't got a lot of patience. So, to me, "counter intuitive" is synonymous with "B.S." Or "deception" or "fraud".

If some great eminence like Einstein or Dirac said "counter intuitive", I'll accept that it's outside the field of normal human experience (ever heard of time dilation or non-locality or wave-particle duality? Look it up and you'll see what I mean. This stuff is lab tested. And it works.)

But I won't take such guff from some goof with a PhD in poli-sci.

Ken Barrows said...

I think the presidential campaign would be more interesting if the candidates let us know all the countries they planned to attack. Then, after attacking others, we'd have a record.

Gruff said...

The official story about 9/11 "probably nonsense"? Tell me it ain't so.

Helix said...

@Karl K: re "Too bad most Americans will be unable to comprehend it. This would require an IQ higher than bathwater. Sadly."

O c'mon. Don't you know that almost every American student makes the Honor Roll now?

Ray Ogoraeck said...

This article, would be funny, if it wasn't tragic for lots of people ??

Sheila Grace said...

Thank you as always Dmitri, now it looks like the 'checker's team is attempting their latest WMD visa vi the Panama Papers...so the boob tube gobblers will eat it up, but those in the outlying alternate internet world aren't buying it. It's all about the Patterns, and who stands to benefit. Turns out Nevada is ground zero for this round, but not for the reasons most of the sheeple will realize.

sheila