We have not reached the end of the American empire, but we’ve reached the beginning of the end. From Fred Reed at fredoneverything.com:
Oh good. The world reaches a crossroads, or probably a road off a cliff, just when I want to relax and watch gratuitous violence on the tube. To judge by the rapid drift of events aboard our planetary asylum, the talons of Washington and New York on the world’s throat are fast being pried a-loose. The Global American Imperium is dying. Or so it sure looks anyway.
I say talons of “New York and Washington” because America’s foreign policy, forged in those two cities, belongs entirely to them. Americans have no influence on it. Further, none of of what the Empire does abroad is of any benefit to Americans. Do you care at all what happens in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, or the South China Sea? Do you want to pay for it? America has been hijacked.
And the Empire prospereth not. It prospereth very not. Consider the recent record of the world’s hyperpower:
Washington does not have control of Afghanistan, and obviously is not going to.
Washington does not have control of Iraq, and appears unlikely to.
Washington did not back Iran down, and isn’t going to.
Washington did not back Russia down in Ukraine and Crimea, and isn’t going to.
Washington did not back China down in the South China Sea and, while this is perhaps not over, the Empire seems to be losing.
Washington has not backed North Korea down and is not going to.
In the Philippines, President Duterte has told Obama to “go to hell” as being “the son of a whore,” which may be taken to indicate latent hostility. He is vigorously seeking rapprochement with China. While Washington may have him murdered, it seems to be losing control of the Little Vassals of ASEAN.
Turkey seems to be cuddling up to Russia–that is, looking East like Duterte. Maybe Washington can turn this around temporarily, but there-s a whole lot of wavering going on.
Meanwhile Washington thrashes around impotently as per usual in Syria, and, though the jury remains out on this one, looks to have poor prospects. If Washington–AKA New York–loses here, after doing so in Iraq, Libya, Somalia, and Afghanistan, the Empire will beyond redemption be on the downward slope.
The United States is not in danger. The Empire is. This is not good. Empires, the Soviet Union notwithstanding, seldom go quietly. Either Washington gambles on war of some sort against Russia, or Russia and China, in the desperate hope of reversing things, or the Empire gets slowly eaten. Or not so slowly. Once one country pries itself loose, many may rush for the door.
New York may go for calculated war against Russia–say, cyberwar expected not to turn into shooting war, shooting war in Syria not expected to turn into global shooting war, global shooting war not expected to turn into nuclear war. This will be a crapshoot. Note that America has badly misguessed the outcomes of every war since Korea.
This is why the American election actually matters, unusual in Presidential contests. It is Blowhard against Corruption, a swell choice, but Trump is firmly against war with Russia, and Hillary for. Her military understanding is that of a fried egg.
To continue reading: The Loosening Grip: A Beginner’s Guide to Death Throes