Any foreign affairs junky, whether they prefer RT, MSNBC or France 24,should realize by now that even the more progressive Western messages center around the fundamental misperception that the people running the Western world are good people, but they make the wrong decisions because they don't have the facts.
It's time to abandon that illusion.
When Washington continues to support Gulf monarchies who routinely arrest protesters, deny women basic rights, and funnel arms to Al Qaeda inspired fighters in Syria, or Neo-Nazis in Ukraine, it's not because it is naive, but because it is pursuing an agenda that observers cannot believe.[tag]
Last July I posted an article titled http://otherjonesii.blogspot.com/2013/07/the-us-chooses-capitalist-muslims.html, saying that it doesn't matter to the U.S. whether a group is Islamist as long as it supports our conservative agenda. That article had been preceded by another one http://otherjonesii.blogspot.com/2013/07/sunnishi-usrussia.html in which I pointed out that Russia had not really thrown out the socialist baby with the bathwater when it embraced capitalism. Finally, as Ukraine began to appear on front pages, I wrote http://otherjonesii.blogspot.com/search?q=Salami+tactics, in which I traced the beginnings of Fascism in Germany in the 1930's and in today's United States.
Proof of my lack of reach is shown by the fact that most of my colleagues continue to comment on daily events as if a Fascist revival were no more real than Santa Claus. And I don't believe it's because they never learned about the Second World War. It's that they can't bring themselves to admit that everything they've been taught is a lie.
To be able to recognize the evidence, one has to have spent time in other cultures. Whichever they may be, they have an abrasive effect on one's perceptions of reality. Some ex-pats have left home because they do not want to be associated with policies they abhor. Others spend time living abroad simply to get a taste of other worlds. Both groups more often than not see the world as a Big Picture, in which ideologies come alive.
Not only lack of knowledge about twentieth century history, but American ideological illiteracy, as I've written before, is becoming very costly. With no notion of what Fascism is, or how it comes about, most Western intellectuals cannot recognize it even when it is taking shape right before their eyes. (Debates about Ukraine on France 24 show that astonishingly, this myopia extends to French adults whose parents lived through the German occupation. Or perhaps family tales weigh less than fat pay-checks.......)
There is no mystery about what is driving current Western foreign policy: It's about the rape of the earth, to the detriment of its people. Given the people's growing reluctance to cooperate, tried and true methods of Fascist domination are being dusted off. The Patriot Act, NSA spying, Ukraine and Syria currently are its most blatant examples. After three years of war, information about Syria, a country whose culture is foreign to most Westerners, is increasingly difficult to assess, however with Ukraine we are dealing with a more familiar polity where the disaster is still clear for all to see, since it is only just beginning. We must not allow that situation to degenerate into something resembling the Syrian crisis, but that will be difficult as long as mainstream purveyors of information play down both Right Sektor's history and current behavior, even when it is captured on camera. The most generous reaction one can have vis a vis those who gloss over or distort information, is to hope they will realize before it is too late the reality behind the unimpeded rise of openly Neo-Nazi forces in Ukraine.
The forty-five year long Cold War against the Soviet Union that was formally ended less than twenty-years ago, maintains the association of the word 'Russia' with 'Communism' and hence with notion of 'enemy'. Propagandists have an easy time keeping that notion alive because so little non-distorted information reaches the public. Only a small segment of the population thinks to seek out other sources of information and has enough confidence in its own judgement to back Putin against Obama. Thus, while fascism in Syria may not pose a direct threat to the Western way of life, fascism in Ukraine does: its acolytes openly brag of coordinating their actions with rising fascist parties across Europe and Europe, while geographically a peninsula of the Eurasian continent, takes its orders from Washington.
(Article changed on May 7, 2014 at 16:58)