COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN RUSSIA INSIDER
“Russia’s Foreign Minister paves the way for a consensus-driven world order in a landmark speech”
Lavrov is absolutely right.
There is a gradual evolution taking place in world affairs. It is gradual, but it is inevitable.
It is a point I have been making for a decade in my own writing.
I think the new hostility between the US and Russia today reflects American awareness of this new reality.
Henry Kissinger was just quoted by a Russian scholar as saying American-Russian relations are at their lowest in 50 years, and he is a man who should know.
America’s establishment is bit panicked I think with the realization about where things are headed.
So, there is a new aggressive American self-assertion in Europe, trying to make sure Russia is as hamstrung there as possible. Everything from the coup in Ukraine and the constant attack on Russian news sources to immense hype taking place in NATO and demands for new spending are about this reality.
America has tried to stop Russian gas from entering Europe for decades, and it has increased efforts recently despite the obvious fact that Russian gas and German industry are a marriage made in heaven.
America also is starting to get aggressive about its people reading or seeing Russian media. In the past, during the last Cold War, America’s press, always subservient to the demands of security services such as CIA and the FBI, had the public to itself to convince of the official interpretation of the world.
That is no longer true. Russian press offers reliable information in many cases running against the official American narrative, as does at least a portion of the much-maligned independent press on the Internet.
Information, as Americans know, is a powerful tool. After all, perhaps America’s most significant, original contribution to the modern world is the art and science of marketing and advertising, the ways to influence opinion and drive sales, including sales of government views.
Clearly, contemporary Russia has grasped that concept and is operating very effectively on the information battlefield, as it were. We have some competition at last, which, as Americans who traditionally embrace a free economy know, is essential for a healthy economy of any kind, and that applies to markets for information as much as it does to markets for washing machines.
I do think we have rather dangerous times ahead with the blind and trashing efforts of America’s establishment to regain its momentum and dominance. Seriously bad decisions may easily be made where pride and fear become involved. Washington has many very dark and devious characters in important positions. And we have seen already how they have entangled Trump and prevented him from accomplishing a few worthwhile things so many of us hoped to see, including reduced conflict with Russia and an end to the Neocon Wars and coups.
The whole ugly process America is going through reminds me of the situation we see in Israel, only of course on a vastly greater scale. Israel’s establishment understands certain realities are unavoidable parts of its future, and it acts aggressively in many directions in a desperate attempt to alter its fate.
In Israel’s case, it realizes, among other things, that its population prospects are glum with low birthrates for Jews and higher birthrates for Arabic people combined with the extremely low prospects for new pools of immigrants. Israel simply faces a declining (Jewish) population without big pools of immigrants.
But who wants to go live in Israel today except a few fanatics and some American-Israeli businessmen, who know they can always return to American when things get sour, out to make a quick profit on some projects? For ordinary people, Israel offers little to nothing.
The ethos and ideology which fired-up Israel 75 years ago are dying, unavoidably and certainly. Like all painful events in history, humanity slowly but unavoidably forgets. Nature built us this way for resilience and survival. Youth growing up cannot have any first-hand experience, only textbooks and museums. The actual Holocaust generation is virtually gone.
This is why we see all the desperate efforts at building Holocaust museums everywhere and publishing books on the subject, but this is all largely futile with the march of time and evolution. I am reminded of the famous statue of Ozymandias slowly crumbling away in the desert.
You know, the Vietnam War was a pivotal point of my early life. It was the reason I left the land of my birth. America killed perhaps three million people in the world’s great post-WWII Holocaust, and despite monuments and movies and books, it is being forgotten by the population at large. Many young Americans today do not even know what you are talking about when it comes to the subject of this massive, decade-long horror.
So, too, the ethos and ideology which saturated American society for decades after WWII. The sense of being the world’s good guys, the incomparable victors, the "big generation" striding the earth and distributing the blessings of freedom to everyone. Superman and “the American way.” Jimmy Stewart in his pressed WWII uniform with tears in his eyes. It was an illusion, of course, and, like all illusions, it fades.
The reality today is a vicious establishment fighting almost endless dirty colonial wars and fomenting coups and generally making a lot of people miserable. Even America’s press can no longer hide all these realities dawning on the public’s awareness. You cannot, as the old saying goes, turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse.
The truth is that America has only gotten uglier with each passing year. It is often said "the American Dream" is dead, and it very much is. No more jobs galore, which in the 1950-60s was owing to the fact that all the world’s competition was all flat on its back. No, there is serious competition on many fronts, and short of a massive war, it is not going away but only getting stronger.
But the ugliness extends much further than to jobs. Who, thirty years ago, could have guessed America’s government would establish a vast organized effort at extrajudicial killing, something not different, except in its technology, from what the old Argentine military junta practiced when it made large numbers of people “disappear?”
And with that fading reality for America, a lot of other things, many illusions and fantasies, begin to fade. Trump’s election campaign, as far as domestic matters go, was an effort to fire things like jobs and optimism back up, but that was always doomed to fail. You cannot re-create what was a unique situation of 1959.
America, like Israel, has a long, huge process of adjustment ahead of it, adjustments to dealing with the new realities and not just slogans and old memories. It must in many ways become a different place than it has been, than it has been portrayed in Hollywood films for decades, than the myths to which so many ordinary Americans cling and try desperately to keep alive.
Hopefully, for all of us, the insanely aggressive acts of the Bush-Obama years will cease to reflect the way America’s establishment reacts. But we have no certainty in such matters. Powerful people and states have often in the past tried fighting the elements, resisting the winds of change, and they have always failed. But they can do a great deal of damage in the attempt.