Many people will be shocked to hear that the “progressive” Obama administration engineered regime changes in Honduras, Brazil and Ukraine; destroyed a prosperous and stable country – Libya; has been waging a bloody war against Syria for five years; has drastically expanded U.S. military bases in Africa; and continues to antagonize both Russia and China, alarmingly escalating the prospect for major wars. And, oh, we are still in Iraq and Afghanistan, the latter being the longest war in U.S. history.
There are two reasons why the American public is largely oblivious to such facts.
First, foreign policy is rarely discussed in depth in the corporate media or even in the presidential campaigns. World News on TV is just like the World Series in sports– it’s really all about America. Second, modern wars are mostly waged inconspicuously. However, we can’t escape from the consequences – covert and overt wars still cost tens of trillions of dollars, kill thousands of American soldiers, destabilize large parts of the world, turn millions of innocent people into refugees, and create blowback from terrorism.
This article is a discussion of the clandestine strategies used in modern conquest and warfare.
Direct and Obvious Wars
These are the wars that the President announces in a television broadcast. The troops get deployed to a fanfare, and the media covers the “shock and awe” of impressive bombs and missiles. However, even these obvious wars are almost never based on truth. There is a lot of propaganda preceding, during and after these wars.
The most consistent theme in all the wars is that the other guy is always bad and we are the victims first. Hence the war is always justified. After all, it’s hard to motivate the soldiers and get the citizens rally behind the war (and the huge military spending enabled by taxes and debt) if the leaders say, “Hey everyone, we really need to attack country X so that our banks and corporations can expand their empire!”
The propaganda machine has become very savvy and effective since the days of Edward Bernays whose first major accomplishment was coming up with the slogan “Make the World Safe for Democracy” to convince the reluctant American public to jump into World War I. A fascinating and profoundly insightful BBC documentary called “Century of the Self” is a must-watch to understand how propaganda is used to mold and steer modern societies. In his book called Propaganda, Bernays said, “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.”
Now let’s see how this invisible government wages wars in not-so-obvious ways.
Proxy Wars – Using Neighbors
This is a clever and a common way to attack a country because the main instigator 1) doesn’t have to send in its own military 2) doesn’t have to get approval from its own people, and 3) war means immense profits for the military-industrial complex.
When Iran’s pro-west dictator was removed by the Islamists in 1979, the west found a willing neighbor – Saddam Hussein – who would start a bloody 10-year war. A more recent example is of Saudi Arabia that has been attacking its neighbor Yemen for the last few months.
The U.S. has also been manipulating Russia’s neighbors for the last decade, starting with Georgia in 2008 (under Bush) and Ukraine in 2014 (under Obama). Since then, both EU and US have convinced several smaller nations along the Russian border to join the Russophobic club. Both Poland and Romania now host huge NATO bases as well as nuclear missile shields. In fact, before the USSR was dismantled, the west promised that NATO will not expand. However, since the 1990s, a dozen countries have been added to NATO, and other countries such as Sweden and Finland (bordering Russia) are being pressured as well. These are Obama’s wars that are unfortunately ignored by the progressives on the left.
Some of the examples given here may sound like only provocations, but if Russia established anti-US alliances and military bases in Mexico and Canada, we will definitely consider them as acts of war. After all, amassing troops at the border of another country is just setting the stage for an invasion.
Proxy Wars – Fueling Civil War
This is also an age-old technique of divide and conquer that was mastered by the European colonialists. Even during the American Civil War, the British eagerly armed the Confederacy, hoping to gain foothold in America again. A civil war is a wonderful thing for outsiders since two parties destroy each other, and the country ends up as a weak prey after the war.
The European countries also used the same strategy in the Middle East when they drew the boundaries of the countries in that region after World War I. They made sure that the newly formed countries such as Iraq and Syria had a volatile mix of Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds so that any ruler can be threatened by an uprising from one of the other factions. The Kurds, for example, have always been lured into fighting for the west by the promise of a country of their own. In both the Gulf Wars, they fought against Saddam; for the last couple of years, they have been fighting against Al Qaeda and ISIS; now it looks like they are asked to fight against Iran as well. Unfortunately, in the geopolitical chessboard, Kurds will be more useful if they remain oppressed and without a nation.
Under Obama, both Libya and Syria were attacked by fueling gruesome civil wars. I have described this in detail in a two-part series (Links for Part 1 and Part 2).
Proxy Wars – Using Mercenaries
Mercenaries are private soldiers and corporations that wage wars on behalf of governments. There was a time when such mercenaries were driven by patriotism – for example, David Stirling of the UK who operated in the Middle East and Africa in the 1960s. But now corporations such as Blackwater purely operate as profit-seeking corporations and will gladly accept any “project.” Saudi Arabia, for example, uses Blackwater professionals and soldiers from poor countries to attack Yemen. The U.S. has also been using private military contractors extensively since 9/11. The benefits to the governments are numerous: wars can be waged without public disclosure, activities that would be illegal for governments are easily carried out by mercenaries, and deaths/casualties of military contractors are hidden or ignored and thus are not politically damaging.
Proxy Wars – Using Terrorists
Terrorists are similar to mercenaries, but these ideologically brainwashed people cost a lot less and are willing to engage in the most ruthless warfare and tactics (example: suicide attacks). Thanks to Saudi Arabia’s extremist mosques and Madrassas (Islamic schools) all over the world, an endless supply of terrorists is available for warfare. Here is a 30-min documentary video of a bootcamp for children to be groomed as suicide bombers and terrorists. Many governments around the world secretly fund, arm terrorists to achieve some geopolitical goals and then hope to contain the blowback later. Under Obama, the U.S. has been recklessly arming Al Qaeda (a.k.a Al Nusra) and other groups in Syria, sometimes simply relabeling them as “moderate rebels” (who, for example, recently released a video of their beheading of a 12-yr-old boy). In the future, expect troubles in Xinjiang – the Muslim-majority western province of China – where the globalists will try to use separatists/terrorists to sabotage the New Silk Road.
Economic Wars – Sanctions
These are the modern wars that are little understood or discussed, but can be quite effective in taking over nations. Without firing a single missile, nations can be conquered if their economies are battered.
When the U.S./EU alliance failed to take over Ukraine and the Black Sea, sanctions against Russia quickly followed. France was bullied into canceling the sale of two warships to Russia and farmers across Europe were forbidden from exporting their goods to Russia. Trade between Russia and EU was restricted, international assets of Russian banks, corporations and individuals were frozen, and Russia’s ability to sell bonds in EU countries was curtailed. Using the elusive and dark derivatives market, the price of oil was brought down drastically, trying to recreate the same environment that caused the collapse of the Soviet Union. The goal of such sanctions is very simple: create enough economic pain so that either the leaders surrender or the people of those countries revolt and demand a regime change.
Sanctions are not just lowering of living standards or shutting down corporations. In weaker countries, sanctions kill lives. As former Secretary of State – Madeleine Albright – admitted, more than half a million Iraqi children died from US/UN sanctions. She went on to argue that the deaths were “worth it.”
Economic Wars – Debt
Debt has been a powerful tool to control individuals for many centuries, but using debt to control nations was mastered by the Rothschild family more than 200 years ago. After World War II, debt as a tool was institutionalized through World Bank and IMF. Over the decades, many Latin American, African and Asian countries have been victimized by these debt agencies, which are now spreading their tentacles across Europe (and in the U.S. as well, although the effects here will be felt only in the longer term). One of the best resources in this matter is the book “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man” by John Perkins, whose job was to snare countries into debt that they can never pay back, and then use that as an excuse to devour the nation – steal their natural resources, force them into trade deals etc. Furthermore, a country’s debt only helps the corporations and the 1%. In my article that has been translated into more than twenty languages, I describe how Greece was made to fail, then pushed into austerity, and is now being plundered in the name of privatization.
Coups – Military, Democratic, Civil Uprising
How many Americans know that Obama helped a military coup in Honduras in his first year in the office? Such coups by the CIA or US corporations/agencies are all too common in Latin America and have been so for the last many decades. Starting in the 1980s, the CIA became reluctant to overtly overthrow governments. Instead, new organizations with politically correct names such as National Endowment of Democracy (NED) and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) took over the jobs of propaganda and regime changes. They pour in billions of dollars to create fake grassroots movements to overthrow governments that are hostile to the New World Order. Since the 1990s, George Soros has been playing a major role in this type of regime change, fomenting uprisings all over the world. His Open Society Foundation – an Orwellian name – is active in more than 100 countries around the world. The fact that he has given millions of dollars to Black Lives Matter should give progressives a pause.
The hardest ones to detect are the Democratic coups such as the one that happened in Brazil a couple of months ago. To stop Brazil from getting out of the U.S. orbit of influence, the NSA spied on Brazil’s leaders for years. When the not-so-compliant president, Dilma Roussef, won the re-election, mysterious powers leaked some phone conversations, created a faux scandal with the help of corporate media, impeached her, and replaced her with an unelected corporate stooge who was also once a CIA informant.
There is also an intense effort to overthrow the Venezuelan government that has been going on for many years. With the price of oil being so low, it’s very likely that a pro-US, pro-Exxon Mobil government will be installed soon.
Historians say that major wars happen in a nation’s history around every 80 years, since the generation that fought the brutal war is no longer around after that time period. World War II started in 1939 — 77 years ago.
The next four years will be very critical and if Americans are not careful, they can be pushed into terrible wars. There are geopolitical ticking bombs in Africa, Middle East, China and Russia that the Masters of the Universe in U.S./EU would like to set off. The unstable financial systems in U.S. and EU will likely be mired in another 2008-like crisis within the next year, and a war is always a proven technique to distract or shift the blame.
The China conflict will be reflected in two areas: on the eastern front, expect Philippines, Taiwan and/or Vietnam to be used as pawns. Just like Ukraine, a small neighbor of China will claim it is being bullied, and the U.S. will rush in to protect “freedom and democracy”; on the western front, expect Islamic terrorism in the Chinese province of Xinjiang, and once again U.S. corporate media will be flooding you with sad stories of Muslims who are being oppressed by China. Turkey and Saudi Arabia will be playing sneaky roles in Xinjiang, just as they have done in Syria.
After 1992, the globalists had assumed that Russia was theirs forever, but Vladimir Putin squashed their subterfuge. However, NATO, and possibly a new EU army, will be coming up with imaginative hybrid wars against Russia and Putin. With nuclear missile shields in Romania and Poland, the situation is very precarious, since the message is “We can nuke you, but you can’t retaliate.”
Another event to keep an eye on is the change in the Japanese pacifist constitution that will allow Japan to build its military once again. With a 230% Debt-to-GDP ratio, an out-of-control central bank that recklessly prints money, and a declining population, Japan might very well be tempted to join the war against China.
George Orwell warned us that the war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous. Americans need to aggressively question their politicians and the media, ignore empty slogans, challenge warmongering propaganda, and swiftly reject disinformation from the corporate media.
Author: Chris Kanthan Please check out my book “Deconstructing the Syrian War”