I have 168 fans: Become a Fan. You'll get emails whenever I post articles on OpEdNews
Pepe Escobar is an independent geopolitical analyst. He writes for RT, Sputnik and TomDispatch, and is a frequent contributor to websites and radio and TV shows ranging from the US to East Asia. He is the former roving correspondent for Asia Times Online. Born in Brazil, he's been a foreign correspondent since 1985, and has lived in London, Paris, Milan, Los Angeles, Washington, Bangkok and Hong Kong. Even before 9/11 he specialized in covering the arc from the Middle East to Central and East Asia, with an emphasis on Big Power geopolitics and energy wars. He is the author of "Globalistan" (2007), "Red Zone Blues" (2007), "Obama does Globalistan" (2009) and "Empire of Chaos" (2014), all published by Nimble Books. His latest book is "2030", also by Nimble Books, out in December 2015.
Daesh, Creature of the West
It's easy to dismiss Daesh as the apex of barbarian cultural idiosyncrasies. Even wallowing in gruesomeness, Daesh has been able to project a universalist dimension beyond its Sunni Arab Middle Eastern base. It's like the clash of civilizations playing in a wilderness of mirrors.
Friday, March 24, 2017(5 comments)
North Korea: The really serious options on the table
Team Trump -- just like the previous US administration of Barack Obama -- assumes that Pyongyang, under pressure, must relinquish its nuclear-weapons program before the negotiations start. Wishful thinking, as anyone who has been to North Korea knows. North Korea is for all practical purposes a nuclear power.
Sunday, March 19, 2017(4 comments)
The "Birth Pangs" of a New Middle East, Remixed
Team Trump members might entertain the wishful thinking notion that Moscow will ditch Tehran -- not only in Syria but in terms of Eurasia integration. Not a chance. Yet tell that to the House of Saud. Moscow might be able, with time, to instill some geopolitical sense into Riyadh. Once again, not a chance. Because the House of Saud is now convinced their best ally is President Trump.
Thursday, March 16, 2017(2 comments)
Could Great Wall of Iron become New Silk Roadblock?
All bets are off on how Xi's Great Wall of Iron will smash separatism and/or jihadism combined with the "grid" implemented on the ground by Chen Quanguo. Beijing does not have much time to strike a fine, right balance; too much iron applied against the Uyghurs might just as well mortally wound the biggest infrastructure project of the 21st century.
Saturday, March 11, 2017(5 comments)
Oh, that traitorous WikiTrump
Vast corporate media sectors embedded with the neocon/neoliberal galaxy are spinning that Vault 7 benefits Trump by changing the subject from alleged Russian hacking interference in the US elections and possible Obama administration-ordered hacks of Team Trump's communications. So, if anyone hasn't got the message, the song remains the same. WikiLeaks + Snowden + Russia + Trump = the bad guys.
Thursday, March 9, 2017(3 comments)
"The time to invest in Iran is now"
The real secret in reference to incipient trade is that Russia and Iran do not have much to exchange at globally competitive rates. Russia exports mainly metals, wood, electrical machines, paper, grain, floating structures, mechanically engineered products and weapons. Iran exports agricultural and seafood products.
Thursday, March 2, 2017(2 comments)
Letter from Tehran: Trump "the bazaari"
As with most conferences, what matters are the sidelines. Leonid Savin, a Russian geopolitical analyst, claimed that Russian airspace is now all but sealed with multiple deployments of the S-500 missile defense system against anything the US might unleash.
Sunday, February 26, 2017(1 comments)
Eurasia Integration: A Three-Speed Affair
The US angle in Kazakhstan may turn out to be key during the Trump administration. Exxon has been doing business in Kazakhstan for over 20 years now. US Secretary of State T. Rex Tillerson has a previous history of trying to stall selling Exxon's stake in state oil company KazMunayGas below the price he wanted. In the end he gave in. But should oil prices rise, Exxon will inevitably be back in Kashagan in a flash.
Tuesday, February 21, 2017(2 comments)
Go post-West, young man
The best Western political elites could come up with at their huddle that ended February 19 is this pearl of self-pity: "Donald Trump's comments about NATO being 'obsolete' have caused great uncertainty among America's allies, especially in Central and Eastern Europe.
Thursday, February 16, 2017(10 comments)
The Swamp Strikes Back
the fratricide war between the Trump administration and the most powerful Deep State factions will be beyond vicious. Team Trump only stands a chance if they are able to weaponize allies from within the Deep State. Iran is momentarily relieved; Russia harbors no illusions; and China knows for sure that the China-Russia strategic partnership will become even stronger. Advantage swamp.
Saturday, February 11, 2017(2 comments)
The pivot to China
Trump may have already understood that a trade war is a lose-lose proposition. In the absence of an Asian economic version of NATO (the dead-in-the water Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal), the emphasis will be on "vigilant" allies/semi-disguised vassals such as Japan, South Korea and Australia.
Wednesday, February 8, 2017(8 comments)
Lots of shouting, tiny stick
Everyone who's been to Iran -- neocons haven't -- knows Tehran won't be subdued with angry threats. Iran has been under US sanctions for no fewer than 38 years. Absolutely nothing across Southwest Asia can be accomplished, geopolitically, without Iranian participation.
Tuesday, February 7, 2017(8 comments)
Age of Anger
It's impossible to summarize all the intellectual crossfire deployed by Age of Anger. What's clear is that to understand the current global civil war, archeological reinterpretation of the West's hegemonic narrative of the past 250 years is essential. Otherwise we will be condemned, like puny Sisyphean specks, to endure not only the recurrent nightmare of history but also its recurrent blowback.
Thursday, February 2, 2017(4 comments)
Game-changers ahead on the (long) Maritime Silk Road
the proverbial "concern" with this Chinese win-win was registered in both Delhi and Washington. The possibility that China will eventually acquire a permanent naval military base in the Indian Ocean is a full-time obsession of US Think Tankland. Colombo, though, has always been adamant: Chinese-financed infrastructure does not imply basing rights for the Chinese Navy.
Saturday, January 28, 2017(1 comments)
Who's top rooster in the South China Sea?
The recent diplomatic charm offensive by China spells out the absurdity of any military offensive against an ASEAN member: it's bad for business. The environment after The Hague's ruling -- as the Laos summit proved -- points toward long-term diplomatic solutions for all South China Sea disputes.
Tuesday, January 24, 2017(19 comments)
Will Trump hop on an American Silk Road?
Absent a trade war, the new US trade strategy will be perfect for Beijing, as China will accelerate the expansion of its New Silk Roads/One Belt, One Road project, especially across the Southeast Asian mainland, as in high-speed rail lines linking Yunnan province to Singapore via Laos, Thailand and Malaysia.
Friday, January 20, 2017(9 comments)
Here's How the Trump Presidency Will Play Out
Russia has always wanted peace. But they are not going to play a game with the Masters of the Universe that has Trump as the good guy and the Congress, CIA, etc., as the bad guy as a negotiating ploy. That is how they see it. They do not regard this circus as real.
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Global helmsman Xi Jinping steps up with charm offensive
In a wide-ranging speech that went from global angst to China's new normal, Chinese President Xi Jinping sounded all the right notes that global capital needed to hear; protectionism is like "locking oneself in a dark room," and "no one is a winner in a trade war." He delved into the necessity of peace in Syria, and the perverse effects of the absence of financial regulation.
Sunday, January 15, 2017(3 comments)
Trump, Kissinger and Ma playing on a crowded chessboard
Trump will do business and clinch deals with China, while his deep state-tinged cabinet barks the usually explosive national security rhetoric, dalang Kissinger plots a Russia-China split, and Moscow-Beijing secretly concoct concerted moves. Place your bets on who will be the major partner in the Trump, Kissinger and Ma law firm.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Shadow play: the New Great Game in Eurasia
The "urbane," "cerebral," "legendary" Kissinger is now advising Trump. The long-term strategy might be characterized as classic Divide and Rule, but slightly remixed: in this case an attempt to break the Russia-China strategic partnership by allying with the -- theoretically -- weaker node, Russia, to better contain the stronger node, China.
Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Back to the Future: From the USSR to the Eurasian Century
As we wait for the dawn of the Trump era -- an almost intergalactic geopolitical question mark -- what's certain is that the War Party US deep state won't admit defeat. And the key geopolitical riddle to be answered is how strident internal American tensions will deal with the hub of progressive Eurasia integration: Russia, China and Iran.
Tuesday, December 20, 2016(11 comments)
Who profits from Turkey's "Sarajevo moment"?
Timing is crucial. The hit happened only one day before the Foreign Ministers of Russia, Turkey and Iran were scheduled to meet in Moscow for a key Syria strategic discussion. They were already closely in touch for the past few weeks on how to strike a comprehensive deal on Aleppo -- and beyond.
Sunday, December 18, 2016(2 comments)
Trump does Taiwan
China accounts for only 16 percent of the US deficit, slightly ahead of Japan and Germany. So a Trump trade war on China "would be a war against all participants in the global supply chain, including US companies." Trump may throw Taiwan at the table, but Beijing is already playing another game entirely.
Monday, December 12, 2016(11 comments)
Obama Out Not With a Bang, But a Whimper
The whimpering Obama administration is not over yet. Expect more sensational CIA exploits; more demonization of Russia; more weaponizing of "moderate" Syrian "rebels"; and even the odd false flag.
Tuesday, December 6, 2016(3 comments)
No, Italy is not about to leave the euro
Italy is now firmly concentrated on trying to get a new -- functional -- government, not abandon the euro. But that still entails a fascinating sub-plot; none other than Angela Merkel will have to step up and lend a hand to "save" the EU by saving the future of Renzi's Democratic Party. Now that's what an opera buffa is all about.
Monday, December 5, 2016(2 comments)
The Rules of the (Trump) Game
Mad Dog James Mattis may indeed be seen by the real world as, well, a mad dog; he was on the front line of the 2001 assault on Afghanistan; led the Marine assault on Baghdad during Shock and Awe in 2003; and masterminded the horrendous American destruction of Fallujah in late 2004. Widely hailed as a fine strategist, he retired as chief of CENTCOM in 2013.
Wednesday, November 30, 2016(10 comments)
Lenin Comes to the White House?
"America First" -- but for whom? The key question is who will end up defining America's real national interest; true nationalists embedded in Team Trump, plus the proletariat "elite," or the usual -- globalist -- suspects able to infect and corrupt any notion of nationalism? Politics is war -- what else? And "revolution" is still the biggest show in town.
Tuesday, November 29, 2016(2 comments)
Welcome to the Fillon-Le Pen cage match
As it stands, everything points to a Fillon-Marine cage match next spring. President Francois Hollande would be barely able to beat a frog (literally) if he runs for a second term. Even lackluster current Prime Minister Manuel Valls would be more popular.
Sunday, November 20, 2016(3 comments)
Will Trumpolitics Erase Clintonism?
As much as 47% of Americans eligible to vote did not bother to on November 8. Trump had roughly 25.5% of the eligible electorate vote, in fact less than Hillary Clinton's 25.6%. That translates into a de facto mandate of roughly one-fourth of Americans. Overwhelmingly popular it is not. The key question is whether Trumponomics will be able to stare down and at least subdue the most savage aspects of unbridled neoliberalism.
Saturday, November 19, 2016(3 comments)
China "Marco Polo" Xi Jinping starts jockeying in post-Obama world
An eventual US-Russia deal in Syria would ultimately benefit -- who else -- China. Mirroring the original Silk Road, China sees Syria as a crucial node of the New Silk Roads, currently cut off. Picture the day in a not too distant future when Xi will be stopping in Damascus to do trade deals. And to call for a stimulus package of Chinese tourists to visit a restored Palmyra.
Friday, November 18, 2016(14 comments)
Welcome to the Brave New (Trumpolitical/Trumponomic) World
We will be living among the myriad debris originated by the Trumpolitics IED. America invented the politically correct. Trump bombed politically correct. America is proud of corporate media. Trump bombed corporate media. These are already two important victories.
Tuesday, November 8, 2016(3 comments)
It's All a Russia/Al-Qaeda/WikiLeaks/"Rogue" FBI Plot
A case could be made that the first Comey letter to Congress was a response to an FBI internal revolt. Agents that were part of the insurgency are not likely to quit the long game -- even after the election. They have made sure that the real deal is with the Clinton Foundation, not Hillary's emails.
Friday, November 4, 2016(37 comments)
What Does it Take to Bring Hillary Clinton to Justice?
Virtually the whole planet holds its collective breath at the prospect of Hillary Clinton possibly becoming the next President of the United States. The FBI has been on the Clinton Foundation for over a year. Now, arguably, they are loaded with evidence -- and they won't quit. Winning the presidency now seems to be the least of Hillary Clinton's Bonfire of Scandals' problems.
Wednesday, November 2, 2016(12 comments)
Hillary Clinton, The FBI and November Surprise
It's possible Comey had to do it because the rot goes way beyond the Clinton "pay to play" racket and involves virtually the whole system, from the deep recesses of the Obama administration to the War Party scam, the Department of Justice, the CIA and the FBI itself. What next? Brace for impact; it may well be the ultimate November Surprise.
Sunday, October 30, 2016(5 comments)
American Dream, Revisited
We keep slouching towards a single future language -- the language of algorithms, as designed across the Wall Street/Silicon Valley axis -- that would represent a real anthropological catastrophe, just like the globalist/New World Order dream of One Thought and One Culture. That's where the American dream seems to be heading. It's time to take the next exit ramp.
Saturday, October 29, 2016(13 comments)
Why Hillary won't unleash WWIII
Russia has all the natural resources it needs; unlike the US government, which believes it needs an empire of bases overseas and 10 aircraft carrier task forces to secure the resources it lacks. Hot war? Hillary Clinton may have pulled a Julius Caesar over Gaddafi. But she's realist enough to not pull a (nuclear) Hitler over Moscow. Or is she?
Friday, October 28, 2016(43 comments)
Russia Calls the War Party's Bluff
Well-informed Western analysts know that Moscow never brags about military buildups -- and has mastered to a fault the element of surprise. Much more than calling a bluff, it's Moscow's Sun Tzu tactics that are really rattling loudmouth Washington.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016(5 comments)
"America Has Lost" in the Philippines
The neocon/neoliberalcon industrial-military complex fury against unhinged Duterte's game-changer is that containing China and ruling over the First Island Chain has been at the core of US naval strategy since the beginning of the Cold War.
Saturday, October 22, 2016(7 comments)
So Russia Won't Elect the Next POTUS
What about the (silent) Big Red Dragon in the midst of this appalling circus? The final cage match in Vegas yielded no further demonization of China. Beijing anyway is ready -- confident that no Pivoting Darth Vader in a White Pantsuit will be able to derail the Eurasian Century.
Thursday, October 20, 2016(3 comments)
BRICS continues its advance, one step at a time
The annual BRICS meeting held this past weekend in India. Apparently there's not much that meets the eye. Yet President Putin once again stressed the context; this is a long-term project, a "key element" in the embryonic multipolar world, driven by nations that don't accept "power pressure" and attempted "targeting of sovereignty" by the usual suspects.
Thursday, October 13, 2016(6 comments)
Is Trump ready to go nuclear?
for all the 24/7 scandal time of non-stop groping and kissing and lewd locker room misbehaving, Trump seems to be ready to limp toward the finish line just as he began; an all-out populist/nativist/nationalist fighting open borders (a Clinton mantra, as revealed by the latest WikiLeaks Podesta email dump); "free" trade; neoliberal globalization; and regime change/bomb them into democracy/"humanitarian" imperialism.
Tuesday, October 11, 2016(30 comments)
Hillary Clinton's Axis of Evil
The deafening talk about Washington now advancing a Plan C in Syria is nonsense. There has never been a Plan C; only Plan A, which was to draw Russia into another Afghanistan. It did not work with the controlled demolition of Ukraine. And it will not work in Syria, as Moscow is willing to supply plenty of air and missile power but no boots on the ground of any consequence.
Saturday, October 8, 2016(2 comments)
Why the New Silk Roads terrify Washington
Beijing is betting that the overwhelming majority of nations across Eurasia would rather invest in, and profit from, a "win-win" economic development project than be bogged down in a lose-lose strategic game between the US and China. And that, for the Empire of Chaos, is absolute anathema. How to possibly accept that China is winning the 21st century/New Great Game in Eurasia by building the New Silk Roads?
Sunday, October 2, 2016(8 comments)
Afghanistan; It's the Heroin, Stupid
Deep in the shades, contractors keep moving the CIA heroin to the West. The US-NATO combo has just pledged to help fund Afghan security forces to the tune of around $1 billion annually over the next three years. Few will be aware that offers splendorous extra incentive to CIA-run heroin traders plying their wares across the EU.
Thursday, September 29, 2016(4 comments)
Wall Street: The Trump-China missing link
To recover US manufacturing jobs -- as Trump has been forcefully promising -- he will have to stare down the whole Wall Street finance oligarchy. So no wonder these oligarchs -- responsible for shipping all those US manufacturing jobs to Asia and lavishly profiting from bailouts to the "Too Big To Fail" racket -- hate him with all their golden-plated guts.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016(4 comments)
Mother Superior VS Ranting Schoolboy
The temptation is irresistible to conceptualize the Clinton Machine's strategy going into the first US presidential debate; let Donald Trump metastasize into a pretzel. Mission not impossible; in fact, accomplished. While Secretary Clinton controlled the debate, Donald could not even control his temper; but this being The Donald, it did not prevent him from launching an out of left field self-elegy to his "temperament."
Saturday, September 24, 2016(9 comments)
Trump will push to organize an immediate rapprochement with Russia in case he's elected, so the US industrial-military-surveillance complex can catch up and at least try to remedy the danger of losing the next war Hillary and her own neocon bag of deplorables are so bullish on.
Friday, September 23, 2016(5 comments)
Non-Aligned to... Nowhere?
It will be a long and winding road. NAM may not have much except a Jakarta-based Center for South-South Technical Cooperation, and a number of joint committees with the Group of 77 developing nations. But they do hold the moral high ground in the fight for a more equal, balanced and decent world.
Thursday, September 22, 2016(2 comments)
The US road map to balkanize Syria
This continues to be about the Qatar to Turkey -- via Syria -- natural gas pipeline versus the proposed $10 billion Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline, for which there is already a memorandum of understanding. Lavrov is too much of a stellar diplomat to leak it -- but after Deir Ezzor, Moscow has definitive proof any possible ceasefire bargained with Washington will be smashed.
Tuesday, September 20, 2016(2 comments)
Playing Algorithm'n Blues
Facebook actually determines, according to its own interests, what everyone sees -- and learns -- in the social network. No less than two-thirds of American adults have a Facebook profile. Nearly half, according to a Pew Research Center report, rely on Facebook for at least some of their news.
Friday, September 16, 2016
What is BRICS member India really up to?
Modi's priority is to solidify India as the top South Asian power. So he cannot afford to antagonize Washington. Naturally, US corporations -- heavy supporters of TPP -- are salivating at the lucrative prospects. The drive is similar to what China did decades ago, but now with emphasis on "protection of intellectual property" to attract the TPP-obsessed crowd.
Wednesday, September 14, 2016(2 comments)
China Ups the Game in the South China Sea
Washington must factor the delicate political equation before the extremely complex royal succession, with the power of the Thai army solidified by a new constitution as it expands trade and political relations with both Russia and China. The only discourse emanating from Washington boils down to Pentagon obsession with confrontation in the South China Sea and White House obsession with TPP, the trade arm of the pivot.
Monday, September 5, 2016(4 comments)
Made in China G20 and its geoeconomic significance
The G20 in Hangzhou showed China is ready to show off its economic clout and to exercise a much more active role in geoeconomics. It's clear that Beijing prefers to play the game in a multilateral trade system based around the WTO. Washington, instead, has been trying to rig the game with new "rules"; TPP and TTIP.
Friday, September 2, 2016(4 comments)
The Ultimate 21st Century Choice; OBOR or War
At the G20 China once again is announcing it is taking the lead. And not only taking the lead -- but also planning to overstretch its abilities to make the hyper-ambitious OBOR Eurasia integration masterplan work. Call it a monster PR exercise or a soft power win-win; the fact that humanitarian imperialism as embodied by the Pentagon considers China a major "threat" is all the Global South--and the G20--need to know.
Tuesday, August 30, 2016(6 comments)
Brazil's Dilma Rousseff, a woman of honor, confronts Senate of scoundrels
Rousseff is on the way to be stripped from the presidency of the world's 8th largest economy by a bunch of scoundrel-cum-coward politicos. Her impeachment means in practice that democratic voting in one of the world's largest democracies will be cancelled by a parliamentary coup remote-controlled by oligarchic interests. This is not, and never was, about justice; it's about dirty, nasty politics.
Monday, August 29, 2016(2 comments)
The Whole Game is About Containing Russia-China
Compared to Russia's superior high-tech weaponry, NATO is a kindergarten mess; not to mention that soon Russian territory will be inviolable to any Star Wars-derived scheme. China will soon have all the submarines and "carrier-killer" missiles necessary to make life for the US Navy hell in case the Pentagon harbors funny ideas.
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Brazil's Banana Scoundrels Will Now Win Their Olympics
The multi-layered coup, with modified Hybrid War elements, comes with a prearranged finale. It does not matter that even Brazilian Public Ministry experts have repeatedly admitted there's no juridical basis for Rousseff's impeachment. Even the federal prosecutor on the case concluded a few weeks ago that she did not commit a crime -- responsibility or otherwise.
Could Trump Pull Off a Post-Party Coalition?
There's no evidence Trump's ambitious -- and contentious -- agenda can be sold to movers and shakers from JP Morgan to the Koch brothers. Trump creating a cross-party, trans-party or even post-party movement will only succeed if substantial players in the Power Elite are behind it, and there are no signs of this happening.
Friday, August 5, 2016(7 comments)
Hillary, Queen of War: The Road Map Ahead
Tehran has myriad reasons to be on red alert if the Full Spectrum Dominatrix gets her hands on the nuclear codes (how's that not scarier than Trump?) She will act as a surefire faithful servant of the Saudi/Israeli alliance. The road map is ready. And neocons and neoliberalcons alike can hardly contain their excitement at seeing in action "a force that can flex across several different mission sets and prevail."