Troika guarding American foreign policy

By Ben Tanosborn

So the financial markets are getting a breather this weekend, hoping that the powder keg lit by this century’s version of the Keystone Kops (NATO) in Ukraine a few months ago can be diffused.  Well, perhaps with a little luck and some true diplomacy, the US-EU can convince this Napoleon (Putin) not to cross the Elbe (Dnieper).

However, America’s unarmed, untrained top cop appears to be making a much bigger mess of things.  Or, at least, his handlers are!

From Tallinn (Estonia) this time, Obama showed his distinctive flair and composure as he delivered a “pledge of defense” speech on Wednesday.  A speech likely written by some politicos-in-training, probably fresh from an Ivy League graduate school where they learned the basics of information retrieval (historical facts and factoids), and the theatrical arts of American political life, familiarizing themselves with the oft-reenacted patriotic play in which Americans portray themselves to the world as a free, self-governing people, via representatives they “democratically” elect. A play intended as historical genre, but one which appears to some of us as belonging in a genre of its own; one which unintendedly draws from both comedy and farce.

And America’s articulator-in-chief did his job with conviction if not eloquence, delivering a container of hypocrisy where a plain, simple package would have sufficed; the speech writers emulating the same old clichés of comedians-in-tour… making some cutesy reference to the town currently being visited, in this case bringing up the names of the capitals of the three Baltic states: Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius, cities which these writers might not have known existed prior to looking them up in a map when drafting the speech for the so-called, Leader of the Free World.  Pure and unadulterated hypocrisy in both the text and the tonality in which the speech was delivered… a speech that was clearly intended not just for the Finnic audience in attendance, but for the European and American television audiences; and most particularly for the benefit of that evil ex-KGB fellow holding the reins in Russia today: Vladimir Putin.

Frankly, after listening to the entire speech I was stupefied; yet, I should not have been, for American presidents have had little or no influence for over three decades in modifying a foreign policy well entrenched when they took office.  They all have been at best caretakers, at times strong cheerleaders, but never critics or changers of the troika guiding, and guarding, the empire.  Why would Barack Obama be any different than the two Bushes, or Bill Clinton, or Ronald Reagan who presided before him?  Our chosen leaders before entering the White House are symbolically walked into the foreign policy inner sanctum where they must swear allegiance and make peace with the three-headed hellhound guarding the doors to the empire.  Three heads for a beastly body: militarism (represented by much of Congress and the Pentagon); predatory capitalism (not to be confused with competitive business); and unyielding, ferocious Zionism.

And Obama is simply the latest chosen leader (figurehead) for the empire, holding the granite tablets where American foreign policy is inscribed, rules of governing behavior he must adhere to in exchange for the perks he receives as emperor of the Western World, if without Charlemagne’s crown.

For almost a quarter of a century, since the Berlin Wall came down, the United States has had an unyielding chokehold in a foreign policy aimed not just at the disbanding of the Warsaw Pact nations and the dismantling of the Soviet Union, but the encirclement of Russia as the surviving, America-equal nuclear power.

Time and again Russia has had to confront NATO’s encroachment – US encroachment under the pseudo collective flag of the NATO alliance – as both ex-Warsaw Pact and former soviet republics were being admitted (coerced) to membership in NATO; the three Baltic republics, two of them bordering Russia, attaining such membership a decade ago.  And now, here we are in 2014 with America adding to the intrigue involved in regime change in Ukraine and the possibility of that nation also joining the NATO Borg collective run by the United States.  Such membership will happen unless Putin puts his foot firmly on the ground… something which he must do, and undoubtedly will do.

Has America lost its head, or has it developed a nuclear-impenetrable dome to protect itself from an otherwise assured holocaust?

European NATO nations are nonsensically looking for self-immolation as they follow a totally misguided and reckless US leadership.  Contrary to negative, blatant and often obscene American propaganda, Putin seems to be prudently exercising a logical military defense of his nation; his ambition for Russia not being passé territorial acquisition (land grabbing is certainly not the issue), but pointedly in the commercial arena where he is trying to influence the formation of a viable Eurasian union to emulate, if not rival, the European Union.  Apparently the US doesn’t like that either.

One cannot help but wonder… is the US obsessed with dislike, even hate, for Putin; or is it Russia, the military superpower, that the American government truly distrusts and resents?  Is the empire afraid to have reached the Alzheimer’s stage of its hegemony as the BRICS prepare a geopolitical and economic facelift for the world?

As Obama was delivering the speech to a friendly Finnic audience, the ethnic group which accounts for almost 70 percent of Estonia’s population, I couldn’t help but think the 30+ percent minority of non-Finnics, mostly ethnic Russians, should also have a representative voice; something which similarly would apply to the populations in the two other Baltic nations: Latvia and Lithuania.  Unfortunately, the three Baltic nations have been subjugated to power play exercised in the region, at different times, by both Germans and Russians.  But at the end of the day, the light of reality should ultimately rule the day.  Warring past and bad historical memories set aside, the peoples of both central and eastern Europe have much in common and good reason to formulate an interdependent permanent peace, exclusionary of American interference and intrigue.  Illusory and wrongly-conceived democracy is not the issue, brotherhood is.

American interference and intrigue in the Russia-Ukraine feud does equally apply in the Middle East where the United States has for over half a century seeded not democracy but chaos.

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Ben Tanosborn

Ben Tanosborn is an independent columnist. After completing graduate studies at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles), BT set out for a career in international business that would take him to five continents, expose him to several cultures, and make him realize the importance for any and all Americans to become goodwill ambassadors for the United States. With his socio-political columns, BT hopes to bring to the forefront issues that are relevant to the national discussion in international affairs. BT resides in Vancouver, Washington (USA) where he operates a business consulting firm.

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