Reprinted from Asia Times
BERLIN--Oh I love the sound of a Su-24 bombing "Caliphate" goons in the morning. Smells like...victory. Well, not really. Because we, the Masters of the Universe, are not doing the bombing.
I'm waiting for my man with 26 devalued euros in my hand right beside the embassy of the Empire of Chaos, which looks sideways at the Brandenburg Gate. All around, major preparations for the "festivities" celebrating the 25th anniversary of German reunification.
Autumn breeze, gorgeous sunny day, a long walk by the Spree and across Tiergarten. Ich bin ein Berliner. Well, my generation's always been, since JFK immortalized it. All those crossings to the "evil" side. You are leaving the American sector. Fear and loathing -- and Dadaist dementia -- in the DDR. Traversing Kreuzberg in 1977 with a pre-Raphaelite valkyrie while Bowie was composing Low and Heroes -- from Always Crashing in the Same Car to The Secret Life of Arabia -- but we were too stoned to figure out where the flat he shared with Iggy Pop was.
And then we were all, always, crashing in the same conceptual car, as virtually every single key concept of the past 200 years was invented in Germany. And we owe as much to Hegel as to Schopenhauer, as much to Novalis as to Heine, as much to Holderlin as to Kant, as much to Bettina von Arnim as to Kraftwerk, not to mention that ultimate romantic joint suicide pact at lake Wansee, Kleist and Henriette Vogel. Sorry Foucault, Barthes, Lacan, Derrida, and even Deleuze, but without Nietzsche you would all be...bartenders?
And yet as I sipped a memory and desire martini at the Hotel Adlon I couldn't get Syria out of my head. This was developing like a bad case of being (pleasantly) stuck inside of Berlin with the Syria blues again.
My man, a crack financial journalist, shows up with his delightful Made in Istanbul girlfriend brimming with Rabelaisian stories from Masters of the Universe financing of Nazism to the (private) secrets of the Fed and prime deep state revolving door material -- over 200 pages of sources -- for his forthcoming (summer of 2016) book. We stop for coffee at the Einstein, where the lovely waitress, oh so Berliner, instantly engages in a detailed discussion of Twin Peaks -- damn good coffee! -- as we're joined by a crack film maker whose latest documentary on Franco-German Arte examines Saint Ronnie Reagan's "secret" war on the USSR.
Then it's off to the Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW), which within the framework of a fabulous long-term project, 100 Years from Now (investigating ...the conditions that produce the temporal regimes of global capitalism today) has kindly invited me to talk about something Asia Times readers are quite familiar with: the New Great Game in Eurasia -- with its accompanying New Silk Roads (listen to the podcast here; and don't miss Margarita Tsomou's devastating analysis of Greece as the "star" of inner-European colonialism.)
The "dreaming collective"
So many fabulous discussions at the HKW. How Germany "invented" adolescence -- from Goethe's Werther and Wagner's Siegfried to 1960s California counterculture (echoes of the Lizard King: Die young, stay pretty, leave a beautiful corpse.) And the inevitable eternal recurrence of that tragic angel -- Walter Benjamin, who conceptualized the "dreaming collective"; bourgeois culture from which history is totally absent. And when history evaporates what's left is the (unregulated) madness of the commodity world; our world. Thus an abundance of projected collective dreams which fit right into the history of political terror.
Inevitably "dreaming collective" -- and political terror -- had to bring me back, once again, to Syria, where Russia, in roughly 48 hours, did more to smash the Wahhabi/Salafi-jihadi terror matrix than the coalition of dodgy opportunists in over a year and 6,000-plus "sorties." So many wonders you can operate with a couple of Su-24s, decent sat intel, decent ground intel, and political will.
And then the bigger bang, not a whimper; the larger-than-life ridicule enveloping that tentacular industrial-military-security-intel complex that wastes 1.3 trillion a year.
Thus Full Spectrum Outrage; from neocons to neoliberalcons to "humanitarian" imperialists, everyone is absolutely fuming. It goes from "Putin plunges into a cauldron to save Assad" -- no, dummies, the cauldrons will be laid out by Russia as traps for ISIS/ISIL/Daesh -- to the new Russian "strategic blunder" (their new Afghanistan!) and the Pentagon weighing the use of "force" to "protect US-backed Syria rebels targeted by Russia."
How dare the Russkies target "our" oh so "moderate" rebels? Our clean-cut al-Qaeda guys?
Instantly forgotten is that notorious August 2012 Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) paper that spelled out how the NATO GCC combo and Turkey were facilitating the emergence of a Salafi-jihadi "Caliphate" to speed up the "Assad must go" regime change operation.