|Waterboarding: A rich US tradition of simulated drowning. Source: Time Mag.|
It was no surprise, then, that Obama endorsed the Kennedy doctrine during the Foreign Policy Debate:
"No, I don't, because I think that America has to stand with democracy. The notion that we would have tanks run over those young people who were in Tahrir Square, that is not the kind of American leadership that John F. Kennedy talked about 50 years ago."
It's worth looking at the Kennedy doctrine to determine how much Obama's policies line up with his. JFK is a good example because, like Obama, he was deeply involved in the policies implemented by US forces: "He dealt with every aspect of foreign policy, and he knew about everything that was going on" according to William Averell Harriman, who served in 3 posts, two of which were state secretary posts, in the Kennedy administration.
Exterminating Rational Peasants
In 1961, Kennedy had a problem in Vietnam not unlike Obama's problem in Afghanistan & Pakistan: how to make a rural, self-sustaining agrarian population dependent on a puppet regime whose power comes from occupiers, rather than their own civil society institutions? The answer was found in a policy known as Counterinsurgency, and was carried out by a Pentagon program known as the "Special Group, Counterinsurgency." Like previous Counterinsurgency experiments in Algeria and South Africa, the strategy of SGCI was to remove peasants from productive land and corral the remaining population in urban centers where they could be counted on for cheap wage labor, and tactically controlled.
All told, about 4 million Indochinese were exterminated in the Southeast Asian war effort, which included an unprecedented bombing campaign, defoliation including the destruction of crops, death squads, Laotion heroin smuggling to Vietnam (which literally created the Heroin epidemic in the US), all managed by security personnel of the US government.
Kennedy's terror extended to Latin America, as well. Colombian death squads carried out the whims of rich landowners, particularly against small, rival farmers, and we now know that his planned invasion of Cuba could have led to nuclear war, as deployed USSR forces had tactical nuclear arms that the US wasn't aware of at the time.
This is the blueprint for Obama, whose foreign policy is correctly compared to that of Kennedy. The extermination of populations in the way of natural resources subsists across the Middle East, under a president who is known for his active involvement with airborne death squads. The US also funds satellite death squads, responsible for defending the drug trade in Colombia and exterminating peasants who stand in the way of production by rich landowners in Colombia and Honduras. Crop destruction is widespread by US forces in Afghanistan, where indebted farmers, robbed of their crops, are then forced to sell their family as collateral. Like in Colombia, alternate crop programs are promised, and never materialize.
The More Confusion, the More Profit
In the mind of the Commissar, hundreds of students mowed down by tanks while the world watches are infinitely more valuable than literally millions of peasants working on rural farmland, US heroin addicts, and the civil society and cultural heritage of entire nations. In fact, destruction of this magnitude constitutes a policy to revere and emulate as an alternative to running tanks over students. The attacks on South Vietnam are hardly acknowledged, let alone as a moral terror, even in the most exhaustive academic research. This is because the underlying assumptions preclude any notion that these attacks are relevant. They might completely destroy the social institutions, culture and infrastructure of an entire nation, alienating them and insuring incredibly low economic output, but they don't involve actors of even marginal significance (such as Russian and Chinese infrastructure in North Vietnam) so it isn't a policy issue, and it isn't a media topic.
In precisely the same pathetic mode of thought, NPR uncritically reports the following statements:
"If someone is going to cut off your supply, because they don't like your foreign policy or they want to keep you from attacking a country, this is a dangerous thing," Jaffe says.
"But is "energy independence" the proper term to describe the national goal?
"I prefer the term 'energy security,' " says Roger Altman, who served as deputy Treasury secretary under President Clinton.
"What that means," Altman says, "is, 'Let's get to the point where the amount we import from rogue or potentially rogue nations who might be hostile to us is down to a point where, if suddenly that supply was interrupted or shut off, we go right on.' "
The U.S. learned the importance of "energy security" in 1973, when Arab countries imposed an oil boycott on the United States to protest its military support for Israel in its war against Egypt and Syria. Americans were soon waiting in long lines at gas stations."The wealth of absurdity is mind boggling. (See more of the article's failures at FAIR blog) The first, most obvious example is the characterization of "rogue states." It's known, by US and Israeli open rejection of the International Criminal Court (even while it is endorsed for cases against weaker nations), failure to abide by the Geneva Convention, UN Declaration of Human Rights, the Nuremberg trial precedents or international law on chemical weapons, that these are rogue states. Ignoring the wholesale rejection of international law, the invasion and meddling in the affairs of sovereign nations is not only pervasive in Israeli and US foreign policy, but it is basically absent from Iranian foreign policy, whose greatest feat of meddling are to prop up a resistance group made up of a population that has already been completely driven out of their homeland, and continues to face attack from the regime.
But the very title of the segment invokes another point of hypocrisy: energy independence. Iranian nuclear ambitions are to refine the Uranium that they mine from their own reserves, and to fuel 1 nuclear reactor producing energy and to provide cancer treatment for 850 thousand cancer patients - who are now threatened by Western calls for the end to their enrichment program. In 1979, Iranian ambitions to become energy independence set them at odds with their puppet regime, which was finally overthrown - no longer a puppet to Anglo-American corporate mercantilism, it had to be isolated and attacked. Now, this "rogue nation" is threatening to become energy independent - and its one time master, with tentacles in each of its neighbors, requires propaganda that will ensure that US citizens fear a nation that hasn't invaded another in at least a century, and whose attempts to be energy independent have invited some of the strongest international economic sanctions - from it's "victim," the US, which might lose oil imports if it decides to invade another sovereign nation - a "dangerous thing" according to our commissars.