Why US foreign policy has been a disaster. From Nicolas J. S. Davies at antiwar.com:
Presenting the 2018 National Defense Strategy of the United States on Friday at the Johns Hopkins University, Secretary of Defense James Mattis painted a picture of a dangerous world in which U.S. power – and all of the supposed “good” that it does around the world – is on the decline.
“Our competitive edge has eroded in every domain of warfare – air, land, sea, space, and cyberspace,” he said. “And it is continually eroding.”
What he could have said instead is that the United States military is overextended in every domain, and that much of the chaos seen around the world is the direct result of past and current military adventurism. Further, he could have acknowledged, perhaps, that the erosion of US influence has been the result of a series of self-inflicted blows to American credibility through foreign policy disasters such as 2003 invasion of Iraq.
There were also two important words hidden between the lines, but never mentioned by name, in the new US National Defense Strategy: “empire” and “imperialism.”
It has long been taboo for US officials and corporate media to speak of US foreign policy as “imperialism,” or of the US’s global military occupations and network of hundreds of military bases as an “empire.” These words are on a long-standing blacklist of “banned topics” that US official statements and mainstream US media reports must never mention.
The streams of Orwellian euphemisms with which US officials and media instead discuss US foreign policy do more to obscure the reality of the US role in the world than to describe or explain it, “hiding imperial interests behind ever more elaborate fig leaves,” as British historian A.J.P. Taylor described European imperialists doing the same a century ago.
As topics like empire, imperialism, and even war and peace, are censored and excised from political debate, US officials, subservient media and the rest of the US political class conjure up an illusion of peace for domestic consumption by simply not mentioning our country’s 291,000 occupation troops in 183 other countries or the 39,000 bombs and missiles dropped on our neighbors in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan since Trump took office.
To continue reading: A National Defense Strategy of Sowing Global Chaos