MIKE WHITNEY: Global Realignment and the Decline of the Superpower


Richard Moore

        The United States now faces mounting resistance from all
        corners of the earth. Russia, China, and the Central Asian
        countries have joined together in the Shanghai Cooperation
        Organization (SCO) to fend off US-NATO influence in the
        region. And in Latin America, an alliance of leftist
        governments has formed (Mercosur) under the leadership of
        Hugo Chavez. Africa still remains politically fragmented and
        open to western exploitation, although ham-fisted
        interventions in Somalia, Nigeria and Sudan suggest that the
        empire will face escalating resistance there as well.

Original source URL:

From AxisofLogic.com
Global Realignment and the Decline of the Superpower
Mar 11, 2007, 16:54

The United States has been defeated in Iraq. That doesn¹t mean that there¹ll be 
a troop withdrawal anytime soon, but it does mean that there¹s no chance of 
achieving the mission¹s political objectives. Iraq will not be a democracy, 
reconstruction will be minimal, and the security situation will continue to 
deteriorate into the foreseeable future.

The real goals of the invasion are equally unachievable. While the US has 
established a number of military bases at the heart of the world¹s 
energy-center; oil output has dwindled to 1.6 million barrels per day, nearly 
half of post-war production. More importantly, the administration has no clear 
strategy for protecting pipelines, oil tankers and major facilities. Oil 
production will be spotty for years to come even if security improves. This will
have grave effects on oil futures; triggering erratic spikes in prices and 
roiling the world energy markets. If the contagion spreads to the other Gulf 
States, as many political analysts now expect, many of the world¹s oil-dependent
countries will go through an agonizing cycle of recession/depression.

America¹s failure in Iraq is not merely a defeat for the Bush administration. It
is also a defeat for the "unipolar-model" of world order. Iraq proves that that 
the superpower model cannot provide the stability, security or guarantee of 
human rights that are essential for garnering the support of the 6 billion 
people who now occupy the planet. The mushrooming of armed groups in Iraq, 
Afghanistan and, now, Somalia foreshadows a broader and more violent 
confrontation between the over-stretched American legions and their increasingly
adaptable and lethal enemies. Resistance to the imperial order is on the rise 

The United States does not have the resources or the public support to prevail 
in such a conflict. Nor does it have the moral authority to persuade the world 
of the merit of its cause. The Bush administration¹s extra-legal actions have 
galvanized the majority of people against the United States. America has become 
a threat to the very human rights and civil liberties with which it used to be 
identified. There¹s little popular support for imprisoning enemies without 
charges, for torturing suspects with impunity, for kidnapping people off the 
streets of foreign capitals, or for invading unarmed sovereign nations without 
the approval of the United Nations. These are fundamental violations to 
international law as well as commonly held principles of human decency.

The Bush administration defends its illegal activities as an essential part of 
the new world order; a model of global governance which allows Washington to 
police the world according to its own discretion. The vast majority of people 
have rejected this model and polls clearly indicate declining support for US 
policies nearly everywhere. As former Jimmy Carter National Security Advisor, 
Zbigniew Brzezinski noted:

"American power may be greater in 2006 than in 1991, (but) the country¹s 
capacity to mobilize, inspire, point in a shared direction and thus shape global
realities has significantly declined. Fifteen years after its coronation as 
global leader, America is becoming a fearful and lonely democracy in a 
politically antagonistic world."


The United States is a nation in a state of irreversible decline; its 
foundational principles have been abandoned and its center of political power is
a moral swamp. The Bush presidency represents the ethical low point in American 

The U.S. now faces a decades-long struggle which will engulf the Middle East and
Central Asia leading to the steady and predictable erosion of America¹s 
military, political and economic power.

This is not the "new century" that Bush and his fellows envisioned.

There are still dead-enders within the Bush administration who believe that we 
are winning the war. Vice President Dick Cheney has celebrated the "enormous 
success" of the Iraqi occupation, but he finds himself increasingly isolated in 
his views. Reasonable people agree that the war has been a strategic and moral 
catastrophe. The US has paid a heavy price for its recklessness; losing over 
3,000 servicemen while seriously undermining its standing in the world. A small 
cadre of Iraqi guerillas has demonstrated that it can frustrate the efforts of 
best-equipped, best-trained, high-tech military in the world. They have made 
Iraq an ungovernable quagmire which, by the standards of asymmetrical warfare, 
is the very definition of success.

But what if Bush¹s plans had succeeded? What if his dark vision of "victory" had
been realized and the US was able to subjugate the Iraqi people, control their 
resources, and create an "Arab façade" through which the administration could 
carry out its policies?

Is there any doubt that Bush would quickly march on Tehran and Damascus? Is 
there any doubt that Guantanamo and other CIA "black sites" around the world 
would increase in number and size? Is there any doubt that global warming, peak 
oil, nuclear non proliferation, poverty, hunger and AIDS would continue to be 
brushed aside by Washington¹s corporatists and banking elites?

Is there any doubt that success in Iraq would further strengthen a tyrannical 
system that limits the decision-making on all the issues of global importance, 
even the very survival of the planet, to a small fraternity of well-heeled 
plutocrats and gangsters?

The "new world order" promises despotism not democracy.

Many people believe that America has undergone a silent coup and has been taken 
over by a cabal of political fantasists and war-mongers. But this is only 
partially true. The US has a long history of covert activity, black-ops, and 
other clear violations to international law. Perhaps, we are reluctant to accept
the truth because it¹s easier to stick our heads in the sand and let the 
marauding continue.

The truth is there¹s a straight line from the founding of this country to the 
killing fields of Baghdad. That line may be interrupted by periods of 
enlightenment and peace, but it is still an unbroken stripe from the Continental
Congress to Abu Ghraib, from Bunker Hill to Falluja, from Valley Forge to 
Guantanamo Bay. It all grows from the same root.

The United States now faces mounting resistance from all corners of the earth. 
Russia, China, and the Central Asian countries have joined together in the 
Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to fend off US-NATO influence in the 
region. And in Latin America, an alliance of leftist governments has formed 
(Mercosur) under the leadership of Hugo Chavez. Africa still remains politically
fragmented and open to western exploitation, although ham-fisted interventions 
in Somalia, Nigeria and Sudan suggest that the empire will face escalating 
resistance there as well.

These new coalitions are an indication of the massive geopolitical changes that 
are already underway. The world is realigning in reaction to Washington¹s 
aggression. We can expect to see these groups continue to strengthen as the 
administration pursues its resource war through force of arms. That means that 
the "old order"--the United Nations, NATO and the transatlantic Alliance--will 
come under greater and greater strain until relations are eventually cut off.

The UN has already become irrelevant through its blind support of US policy in 
the Middle East. Its silence during Israel¹s destructive rampage through 
Lebanon, as well as its failure to acknowledge Iran¹s "inalienable rights" under
the terms of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) has exposed the UN as a 
"rubber stamp" for US-Israeli belligerence. An attack on Iran will be the end of
the UN, an institution that held great promise for the world, but now merely 
provides cover for an elite-western agenda. On balance, the UN facilitates more 
wars than it stops. It won¹t be missed.

Afghanistan holds the key for understanding what¹s in store for the EU, NATO and
the transatlantic Alliance. There is no possibility of success in Afghanistan. 
If the men who planned the invasion had a grasp of the country¹s history they 
would have known how the war would progress. They would have realized that 
Afghanis traditionally take their time to fight back; (Eric Margolis predicted 
that the real war would not take place until 4 to5 years after the initial 
invasion) measuring the strength of their enemy and garnering greater public 
support. Then they proceed with deliberate steps to rid their country of the 
invaders. These are fiercely nationalistic and independent people who have 
fought occupation before and know what it takes to win.

We are mistaken to think that the war in Afghanistan is merely a Taliban (or 
worse still) "terrorist" insurgency. The present conflict represents a general 
uprising of Pushtun nationals who seek to end foreign occupation. They know 
first-hand that US-NATO policy has strengthened the warlords, expanded the drug 
trade, reduced security, and increased terrorism. According to the Senlis 
Council Report, the occupation has triggered "a humanitarian crisis of 
starvation and povertyŠ US policies in Afghanistan have re-created a safe-haven 
for terrorism that the 2001 invasion aimed to destroy."

The Afghan armed resistance is resourceful and intractable and has a growing 
number of recruits to swell its ranks. Eventually, they will prevail. It¹s their
country and they¹ll be there long after we¹ve gone.

An America defeat in Afghanistan could be the straw that breaks NATO¹s back. The
administrations¹ global schema depends heavily on support from Europe; 
persuading the predominantly white, western nations to join the battle and 
secure pipeline corridors and landlocked energy supplies throughout Central 
Asia. Failure in Afghanistan would send tremors through Europe¹s political 
landscape and give rise to a generation of anti-American politicians who will 
seek to dissolve relations between the two traditional allies. But a breakup 
seems inevitable. After all, Europe has no imperial aspirations and its 
economies are thriving. They don¹t need to invade and occupy countries to get 
access to vital resources. They can simply buy them on the open market.

As Europeans begin to see that their national interests are better served 
through dialogue and friendship, (with suppliers of resources in Central Asia 
and Russia) then the ties that bind Europe to America will loosen and the 
continents will drift further apart.

The end of NATO is the end of America as a global power. The present adventurism
is not sustainable "unilaterally" and without the fig-leaf of UN cover. America 
needs Europe, but the chasm between the two is progressively growing.

It is impossible to predict the future with any degree of certainty, but the 
appearance of these coalitions strongly suggests a new world order is emerging. 
It is not the one, however, that Bush and the neoconservatives anticipated. 
America¹s involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan will continue to prevent it from 
addressing brush-fires in Latin America and Russia, further strengthening US 
rivals and precipitating macroeconomic changes that could crush the American 
middle class. The likelihood of a major economic retrenchment has never been 
greater as the administrations¹ reckless defense spending, lavish tax cuts, and 
trade deficit have set the stage for the US dollar to be dethroned as the 
world¹s "reserve currency". The three pillars of American imperial 
power--political, economic and military--rest on the crumbling foundation of the
US greenback. If the dollar falls, as many currency traders now expect, then 
foreign (baskets of) currencies will rise, and America will slip into a deep 

America¹s military and economic unraveling is likely to take a decade or more 
depending on the situation in Iraq. If the Bush administration is able to exert 
control over Middle East oil, then the dollar will continue to be linked to 
vital resources and American supremacy will persist. If, however, conditions on 
the ground deteriorate, then Central Banks around the world will decrease their 
dollar holdings, Americans will face hyper-inflation at home, and the US will 
lose its grip on the global economic system. The Bush administration must, 
therefore, ensure that oil continues to be denominated in USDs and that the 
world economy remains in the hands of western elites, banking giants and 

The chances for success in Iraq are gradually diminishing. The US has shown that
it is incapable of establishing security, providing basic social services, or 
keeping the peace. The guerilla war continues to intensify while the 
over-extended US military has been pushed to the breaking point. We expect the 
occupation of Iraq to be untenable within 5 years if present trends continue.

America¹s military and economic unraveling will undoubtedly be painful, but it 
may generate greater parity among the nations, which would be a positive 
development. The superpower model has been an abysmal failure. It has wreaked 
havoc on civil liberties at home and spread war and instability across the 
world. The present system needs a major shakeup so that power can be more evenly
distributed according to traditional democratic standards. America¹s decline 
presents a unique opportunity to restore the Republic, restructure the existing 
global-paradigm, and begin to build consensus on the species-threatening 
challenges which face us all.


Escaping the Matrix website        http://escapingthematrix.org/
cyberjournal website               http://cyberjournal.org
Community Democracy Framework: http://cyberjournal.org/DemocracyFramework.html
subscribe cyberjournal list        mailto:•••@••.•••
Posting archives                   http://cyberjournal.org/show_archives/