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The Sun Begins to Set on the American Empire; History Repeats Itself

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Empires come and then they go, they rise and then they fall; but not one of the many empires that existed in the history of the world has ever survived. And now the world watches the beginning of the end of the American empire. This empire, created and developed over many decades since World War II by the military-industrial complex and its many Washington facilitators, has seen its day and now will go the way of all past empires.

The world has witnessed numerous empires rise up and dominate the world. Here are some of the most powerful empires that once made their mark on this planet and then fell: The Macedonian Empire, founded under Alexander the Great, the Mongol Empire, the Roman Empire, the Ottoman Empire, the Spanish Empire, and the British Empire, which was known as the "empire on which the sun never sets" however, it most certainly did.

America is just the latest empire to exert a massive control over a large portion of the world. The war-enabling powers that control our government and our military have the mistaken impression that this empire will go on forever, that no one and nothing can challenge its supremacy and domination. They know all other empires eventually ended but, in their misguided, power-hungry minds they fantasize that America is unique in all of history and its empire will exist infinitely.

However, they could not be more mistaken. It is utterly ludicrous, actually mind-boggling, to think that the more than 750 military installations around the world can be maintained when America is virtually bankrupt, the majority of states are approaching insolvency, and our infrastructure and our education system are badly in need of restoration. President Barack Obama and his advisers have to be delusionary to think that America can continue spending hundreds of billions and, yes, trillions, on this empire and two totally nonsensical wars.

You would have to be mathematically illiterate not to understand that these policies and actions are leading to a financial collapse; that this fragile house of cards is going to fall apart. Too bad President Obama is a constitutional scholar rather than a math major because if he uses simple math in this scenario he will arrive at this answer: we do not have the money, our national bank is nearing receivership, and we continue to be the largest debtor nation in the world. Soon the overheated printing presses in the Treasury Department will grind to a halt as the value of the dollar completely collapses. To think that this massive empire can continue, and even be expanded, is pure folly.

When enlightened, knowledgeable writers and analysts continually warn of the impending end of the empire, their words largely fall on deaf ears. This president continues to defer to the military leaders who give no credence to such negative assessments; they remain steadfastly committed to expanding the military reach ever further (it's called riding a dead horse) even with the great risks involved.

Once the world respected and stood in awe of America, its creativity, its supposed ideals and principles, its economic power and leadership in world affairs. Even when it took on the responsibility of being the world's policeman, it was acceptable because the world felt safer. But then as this nation became more aggressive and militant, that view turned to one of apprehension about its real intentions. In these stressful times the nations of the world are becoming very uneasy and concerned, actually very fearful, about the further expansion of the U.S. military empire.

President Obama's popularity and job performance have been steadily dropping in polls; so what's primarily behind it? Of course, the continued economic crisis has a lot to do with it because people are suffering and millions needs jobs that are not materializing. But, in the face of these staggering domestic problems, I believe that he is making a monumental mistake in continuing and even expanding the current raging wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In a recent poll his approval rating was around 40%, meaning that about 60% of Americans are not happy with his policies and actions.

Now, when polls are taken that ask questions about America's wars, fully 60% think that we should end the war in Afghanistan and that it is a mistake. If 60% of Americans are now becoming disillusioned with this president and 60% also are now against our military directions, then I think that indicates a direct connection. People are beginning to awaken to the fact that Mr. Obama's emphasis and concentration on these wars, at the expense of our domestic crises, is having a detrimental effect on the stability of our nation and our economy. They have done the math.

President Obama seems to be completely ignoring these apparent trends and opinions of the people, to his own detriment. He continues to try to make a faulted case that the Afghan war is a critical mission against the insurgents, i.e., the Taliban, that want us out of their country. As many expert analysts have said numerous times, the terrorist threat in that region and others can be addressed with strategic Special Forces operations rather than with a massive, costly army. He must reconsider the direction he has taken because it is out of step with the majority of Americans who want it reversed. He is attempting to maintain an empire that has severe cracks in its foundation and has become an economic albatross around the neck of America.

But the most disturbing element of this issue is that the president, the military, the Congress, and the corporate-controlled media know exactly what this bloated empire is doing to the financial foundation of our nation; and yet there is no serious discussion or debate about it. There is constant talk about reducing our massive deficits, to scale back Social Security, Medicare and other services; states are cutting out essential programs but no one dares to talk about cutting military spending, the area that contains the greatest potential for reducing our deficits.

The generals, admirals and military advisers around him have no intention whatsoever of scaling back the military outreach of America. In numerous media appearances, General Patraeus gives every impression that his intentions relative to the Afghan/Pakistan war versus that of the president are quite different. Far more ominous than that is the statement that Defense Secretary Gates was said to have made during a dinner hosted by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for Afghan President Hamid Karzai in May, He was quoted as saying, "We're not leaving Afghanistan prematurely," Gates said. "In fact, we're not ever leaving at all."

This is a highly troubling situation in which the control of our military by the executive branch of our government is being directly challenged. The president says one thing and the military leaders countermand it. Who exactly is now in charge of America's military policy? If this authority is usurped by the military, then America will enter an era like no other in our history.

Every empire eventually comes to an end and this American empire will be no exception. Exactly when it will happen and how it will happen is open to speculation; but happen it will in order to preserve this democracy and ensure a stable future for generations to come. There is a body of opinion that says that the Afghan/Pakistan War will be the turning point at which the American empire will begin its descent; and that just might prove to be the case since Afghanistan is famous for being the "graveyard of empires." This is more than just a mere coincidence, it is history repeating itself.

And this is for certain; if this massive, incredibly costly empire remains intact and is not significantly scaled back to reasonable, but still effective, strategically sound levels it will, without a doubt, take down America as it falls.

Michael Payne

 

Michael Payne is an independent progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues; and especially with the great dangers involved with the proliferation of perpetual war, the associated defense (more...)
 

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It is truly incomprehensible that President Obama ... by michael payne on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 5:36:37 AM
Persian Empire lasted for nearly 500 hundred years... by ASPI SHROFF on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 6:19:37 AM
"AMEN!"... by Robert P. Philipps on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 12:40:40 PM
And "Amen!"... by michael payne on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 12:56:30 PM
Although Empires, of course, are unsustainable and... by Alan MacDonald on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 3:07:03 PM
and right on!Our only hope is that Obama reads, an... by Sherwin Steffin on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 4:08:48 PM
thinking that we have the right to expand beyond o... by Michael Morris on Thursday, Sep 30, 2010 at 4:48:28 PM
Its been clear to me for some time now, that our f... by Michael Dewey on Saturday, Oct 2, 2010 at 8:29:42 AM