Saturday, July 6, 2019


trump’s “crisis at the border” loomed large going into the democratic debates last week. A number of the candidates actually mentioned that we need to deal with the root problems causing mass migration, but none were so bold as to mention US intervention as a root cause. There was talk of providing economic aid to Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala – the Northern Triangle, but there were no details as to how money was going to remedy the political violence that so many are fleeing.

Election cycles in the US provide an artificial bookend to interventionist policies that span decades and multiple administrations. Is the righteous anger of democrats justified when they double down on the threat to our elections from Russia? How many democratically elected governments has the United States undermined and overthrown in the name of US national security, protecting our national interests, fighting communism?

trump is a monster, but he is not on the ground in Honduras shooting off his mouth and waving his arms. His “crisis at the border” is simultaneously a crime against humanity and an uncomfortable reminder of the continuity of US foreign policy.

When the US had the opportunity to go on record concerning the 2009 military coup and deposition of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, Secretary of State Clinton remained silent despite unanimous condemnation from the UN, the international community, and even the conservative OAS.

Snake oil salesman is capitalizing on the cruelty we are witnessing at the border, literally as a privatization scheme, and also figuratively as a campaign platform. But his arrogant entitlement is the true centerpiece of his campaign, signaling his supporters to step up their attacks on those who would steal what is rightfully theirs... It reminds me of a comic I saw just before the Iraq War, posing the perennial question “how did our oil get under their soil?”

The neoconservatives who engineered and sold the disastrous Iraq War are back at it again. American amnesia is employed to absolve us of our complicity in the atrocity, to prepare us to accept yet another war for oil and influence. Iraq switched their oil transactions from the dollar to the euro in 2000. By the end of 2007 Iran had switched all of its oil transactions to non-US currencies. Under regression hypnosis we drift back to 1953, when the US overthrew the first democratically elected government in Iran, after they dared to nationalize their oil industry. We make our own enemies.

Neoliberals in both parties claim fealty to the free market while running an extortion racket that limits the sale of oil by our so called “enemies,” economic monopoly backed through threats of retaliation via the most powerful military in the world. These “sanctions” are not only imposed on the “enemy,” but de facto on those countries that do business with them. Just this last week an Iranian tanker was seized by British marines, at the behest of the US, claiming a violation of EU sanctions on Syria. Everyone wants their piece of the pie. We make our own enemies.

A few short months ago the same neocons/neoliberals pushed for a coup in Venezuela, citing the failure of Nicol├ís Maduro’s administration to feed their own people. Main stream media ran the showdown at the border story – a 20 million dollar humanitarian aid convoy blocked by the heartless dictator. Sanctions imposed by the trump administration, primarily on Venezuelan oil exports/imports, are estimated to cost the Venezuelan economy 30 million dollars a day. We make our own enemies.

More than 17 years in Afghanistan fighting terrorists the CIA funded, armed and trained to fight the Soviet Union 10 years before that... how long will this endless war go on? We make our own enemies.

So how is this enemy of my enemy strategy working for us? The progressive influence among democrats seems to be moving them toward a less punitive approach when it comes to immigration, in word if not in deed. But when it comes to foreign policy many of the them still sound like a hammer looking for a nail. Until we get rid of the underlying profit motive; private prisons, oil revenue, weapons sales – we’ll always need an enemy to galvanize our support.

What will it take for our politicians to acknowledge that US intervention is often the root cause of crises we must later solve, conveniently, through further intervention? Perhaps that should be a question at the next debate: do you think we would have fewer refugee migrants if we stopped destroying the places they come from?

Related video/articles:
Ousted Honduran President Zelaya: U.S.-Backed Coup Destabilized My Nation Forcing Migrants to Flee – Democracy Now!
Noam Chomsky: Members of Migrant Caravan Are Fleeing from Misery & Horrors Created by the U.S. – Democracy Now!
U.S. Sanctions Are Aimed at Venezuela’s Oil. Its Citizens May Suffer First. – New York Times
Why Won’t the Media Criticize US Interventionism? – The Nation
Donald Trump, Iran, and the Gulf of Tonkin Redux – Intercepted
Report Shows How War Profiteers Are Now Refugee Profiteers, Too – Common Dreams
Border Wars – the Arms Dealers Profiting from Europe’s Refugee Tragedy – TNI