Wars are preceded by orchestrated incidents. It took the USS Maine to be sunk to allow the United States to enter a war against Spain; then RMS Lusitania had to be sunk to prod the United States to participate in World War One; World War Two required the sinking of a number of US warships at Pearl Harbor; the Gulf of Tonkin incident allowed Americans to intensify their presence in Vietnam; President Bush needed the twin towers of the World Trade Center to tumble down to have the right pretext for the war against Afghanistan; President Bush senior used the hearsay that Baghdad stored weapons of mass destruction to invade Iraq; President Clinton needed mass graves and concentration camps to give the poor Serbs a sound thrashing; President Barrack Hussein Obama almost began escalating war in Syria after reports on poison gas use against civilians; based on similar reports, President Donald Trump did not shy away from giving the order to launch missiles against President Assad’s troops. So it goes.
When you need to win support of the people for a war, you have to shock them into action. Hence reports of insidious attacks, heinous atrocities and use of prohibited weapons that the enemy has allegedly resorted to. The most potent of them all is the suffering-children card; it was used during World War One: German soldiers allegedly thrust their bayonets through Belgian children’s bodies’; it was used in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq: Iraqi soldiers allegedly disconnected incubators with new-born babies in Kuwait, thus bringing about their instant death; it was used to make Europeans accept the flood of the Third World masses: the visual media bombarded them with the picture of a drowned boy. Now the same trump card has been used by Trump, the president: he pours his heart out to the sorry plight of – how on earth otherwise – children.
Never mind the prospective detente with Russia; never mind the election promises of pulling America out of policing the world; never mind the gratuitousness of a poison gas attack: someone in Washington saw it fit to take action and action was taken. Qui prodest? Continue reading
As we watch the so-called migration crisis, we pose to ourselves questions. What’s the sense, what’s the purpose? We are told we need workforce, yet there are millions of unemployed young Europeans; we are told we are paying for the sins of the yesteryear of colonialism, yet drawing people from the Third World, we strip the countries of origin of brains and hands i.e. act as colonialists. We are told these are refugees, yet we must get down to work to integrate them as if refugees by definition were not people who plan on returning to their war-torn countries after the conflict is over. We are told the Third-World immigrants are enriching us, yet we observe street riots, crime rate increase, reinforced police units in our streets and a number of East European countries defending themselves from being blessed with this enrichment. Continue reading
The People’s Republic has 2,8 million troops at its disposal i.e. the world’s largest army. There are also 3,8 million reservists. For years China has been investing billions in its armed forces: in 2016 it was 216 billion dollars.Only the United States can afford to spend more on armaments. The task that China has set itself is to be able to win regional wars, for China is in conflict with many of its neighbours.
A bone of contention in the high mountains
In July 2016 China’s ground forces encroached upon Indian territory,which was not an isolated event since the 1960 war on the Indian-Chinese border or rather a demarcation line that had been drawn by the withdrawing British Empire. As in 2005, India entered into a nuclear agreement with the United States, China perceived it as a hostile act. On the other hand India did not like the fact that China leased a whole island from the Maldives, where it intended to build a port for nuclear-powered submarines.The border conflict at the foot of the Karakorum should be seen as a part of a broader picture: Pakistan, India’s ally, has been battling against India in Kashmir for years. Continue reading
Bulgaria is torn between three forces. A third of the population is leaning towards the European Union, another third would like to have stronger ties with Russia, and some ten percent of the population are Turks, loyal to Erdoğan. All this is reflected in the results of the latest election that was held in this poorest country of the European Union.
On 26 March 2017 long-postponed elections were held in Bulgaria, and the pro-European GERB Party emerged victorious.The Bulgarian Socialist Party, a successor to the former Bulgarian Communist Party, hence pro-Russian, came second. The DOST (Turkish for friend) Party, which is the representation of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria, won 8,44% of the vote. Continue reading
The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it. (Karl Marx)
The Frankfurt school united Marx and Freud to become the most influential thinkers of the 20th century left. (The Guardian)
Marx had a dream. A dream of changing the capitalist society. With this dream he managed to inspire hundreds and thousands of intellectuals. Some of those intellectuals formulated their own proposals of implementing Marxian dream in real life. One of such proposals that turned out to be most attractive at the turn of the century was communism. After WWII, however, it became obvious that Marxism practised in communist countries not only failed to transform societies after the desired Marxist fashion but also suffered an economic defeat, whereas in western countries capitalism seemed to be thriving and the affluence placated the working class. Latter day Marxists came to the realisation that workers no longer made the revolutionary force in modern western societies and began looking for a new proletariat. The dream of creating a brave new world with a new awareness was still waiting to come true.
Western societies have been subjected to cultural and ethnic diversification which, as its advocates proclaim, was to enrich the indigenous populations and boost their development. Contrary to the stated goals, members of different ethnic groups tend to stick together, displace the locals, and rather than morph into the culture of the host population they preserve their own,all the more so since their numbers are doubling and trebling and since they regard their recipient societies as weaklings without moral backbone.Under such circumstances separate communities form, large cities turn into mosaics whose particular religious and cultural elements are but loosely connected. Differences in worldviews, beliefs, traditions spark off mutual suspicion, aversion, animosity or an all-out enmity. Social cohesion is only make-believe with all the attendant problems which include (ethnically or racially-driven) crime.
When the sense of security is lost, when “the break-ins and muggings [are] beyond control”,and people cannot rely on the police, and such is the case in many large cities across Western Europe, with their no-go zones,members of a community start setting up their own policing units in self-defence. The London-based Shomrim is a prime example. Continue reading
A frustrated Harry Truman would often say, “Give me a one-handed economist. All my economists say, on the one hand…on the other.”
At present, too, the media are clearly in search for a man who holds strong views and they have surely found one in Hans Werner Sinn, professor emeritus, who has published and continues to publish an avalanche of texts, is frequently interviewed by the mass media and remains one of the renowned German economists.
He made himself famous formulating a hypothesis of a bazaar economy by means of which he attempted to clarify why the German national product is shrinking despite the fact that the country has been on top of the list of the exporting countries.His books, too, have made the headlines (e.g. Can Germany Be Saved? The Malaise of the World’s First Welfare State (2007) and The Green Paradox (2011))in which he voices his protest against the energy transition and advocates a policy of strict regulations regarding banks. In numerous interviews Sinn has taken a stance on politics, now giving support to the ruling class, now endorsing the opposition. For that matter he praised Agenda 2010.His statements and comments have since 2015 evoked such uneasiness among the ruling elites that finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble began to call him in private “Professor Nonsense”, while Angela Merkel broke off the relationship with him although he used to be a welcome guest in the chancellery. Continue reading