One of my pastimes in writing involves speculation – speculation about historical events, speculation about current events, and speculation about what these might mean toward future events. I can get to rambling a bit on this topic – I am trying to put into meaningful form ideas that are often abstract speculation still being worked out in my head. Often, my writing is just me in the process of working things out.
I suspect I will ramble through this post….
I have looked quite a bit at the history of the last couple of centuries – the history of the American Revolution, the maneuverings of Anglo-American power, the World Wars and Cold War of the 20th century. Much of this has been done via reviews of books with a viewpoint different than the mainstream; some has been my own (although I doubt ever original) formulation for a different answer to two-plus-two.
Generally, my interpretations are guided by a few assumptions: 1) politicians lie for public consumption, 2) there are rarely big mistakes in desired outcomes on the big things (although, as they are human, mistakes happen, therefore making lemonade out of lemons is a developed skill), 3) there are individuals more powerful than the actors we see on the stage, and 4) these powerful individuals are not completely aligned toward common outcomes – they aren’t always on the same team; however, they share common objectives to the point where they will defend their common toolkit for control (for purposes of this post, the important tool in the toolkit is to create an enemy in order to rally and further control the masses).
Without reviewing every step of the road I have travelled, I am generally settled in a place where I believe a major shift is coming in the structure of the world order away from the Anglo-west; it seems fairly easy now to draw common thread through the growth and expansion of two-hundred years or more of Anglo-elite power, and to see the primary tools for the execution of this power transfer from Great Britain to the United States.
As I have written often, it seems to me that we may have seen the zenith of Anglo-domination – the west may have played its last hand. Long-time readers will be familiar with my speculation that we are headed toward a world where power will shift to a loosely-aligned group including China, Russia, Germany, and maybe Japan and Australia. (See a recent post on this here.) One can find signs in many recent events that point toward this. I am also not the only one making such speculations – rarely is anything truly original under the sun.
Events in the Ukraine can certainly be interpreted along the lines of my general premise – the zenith of Anglo-elite power through the west is behind us; the world is re-shaping along the China-Russia-German lines mentioned above.
What does any of this have to do with the United States calling it quits in the global war on terror (GWOT)?
It can also be considered that the west has played its hand with the whole GWOT thing – the invented enemy after the Cold War enemy didn’t have a very long shelf-life. Perhaps it is because fewer and fewer people are buying the story (anyone with half-a-brain and an internet connection can at minimum find reason to doubt the official version of 911). Or perhaps it is because the Muslim terrorist (as the stereotype is portrayed) – never truly capable in replacing the Red Army as bogeyman – has conformed to his reality: he isn’t much of a true threat, because the average Muslim is just like the average everyone else – someone who just wants to get by in this world.
There is ample evidence that the west is behind the explosion of violence throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Yet, so far at least, this hasn’t yielded much fruit it placing the fear of the other in the minds of the average westerner.
It would certainly benefit the west to have a better (in a cynical use of the term) enemy. As it apparently is not yet possible to convincingly demonstrate that the world is under threat of alien invasion – they couldn’t even get us to believe the whole terror-of-global-warming thing – perhaps an old dance partner is being trotted out: the Soviet Union, in the face of Putin’s Russia.
So I guess I have two thoughts about this: first, is this a sign that the US is calling it quits in the GWOT? Or, to state it more accurately, has the GWOT well run dry? For me, it seems reasonable to speculate that the answer to this is yes.
Second, what does this say about those above the politicians? Do the same people who control the west also control Russia? For this, the answer is not any clearer to me today than it was yesterday. Are there multiple criminal gangs fighting for turf, or one gang using the toolkit to control the rest of us? Criminal gangs don’t have to be permanently aligned to find reason to work together in common cause. Or perhaps more precisely, the same event can be beneficial to both sides; therefore, both sides have reason to promote the same event.
Renewing the Cold War solves many problems in both the West and Russia. This is good for the elite and not-so-good for the rest of us, no matter how the elite are aligned.
But back to the subject of this post – perhaps, in the Ukraine, we are seeing the end of the global war on terror…because we are seeing the return to the Cold War.
The interesting question will be the alignments – whither goes Germany? Japan?