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martes, 8 de julio de 2014

Libya, ALBA and the West - humanity's choice between cooperative solidarity and murderous competition

Libya, ALBA and the West - humanity's choice between cooperative solidarity and murderous competition
Tortilla con Sal

Enviado por tortilla en Lun, 07/07/2014 - 09:16

tortilla con sal, July 4th 2014 

In September 2013, the Belfer Center of Harvard University published a study confirming that NATO's war on Libya was based on downright falsehoods. In June this year the US authorities announced data indicating that the economy contracted 2.9% in the first quarter. In the same month Facebook admitted accusations that it had abused its system so as to carry out an unauthorized experiment in mass psychological manipulation of its users

But no one in the NATO countries concerned is facing trial in the International Criminal Court for the criminal aggression against Libya. Stock market prices continue at high levels and the financial media say, six years after the international financial system collapsed in 2008, that the recovery is "gaining traction". The millions of Facebook users continue to use that social network as if nothing has happened presumably because it has become such an integral part of their daily routine. 

The connection between these diverse apparently unrelated events is that they show the integral corruption of the criminal system of Western capitalism. No matter where one looks. In international relations, in the United Nations, in the economy, in the financial system, in intellectual life, in the communications media, in sports bodies like FIFA or the International Olympic Committee, corruption is everywhere. Virtually every area of public policy is perverted so as to benefit corporate elites. 

In Western media, innumerable liberal and progressive analysts express an almost neurotic longing for change. The academic and media phenomenon of Thomas Piketty's study of capitalism openly acknowledges the social and economic injustice of capitalism. The media phenomenon of Edward Snowden explicitly recognizes the routine abuse on a massive scale about which many other people before Snowden had raised the alarm for decades.

Few have noted the paradox that these media phenomena are generated by the self-same inert broken system that Snowden and Piketty criticize. Far from being a virtuous demonstration of democracy, essentially what Piketty and Snowden and their promoters are saying comes down to something like, "Sure, the system's broken but if we tighten a nut here and a bolt there the machinery will work again just fine". Or perhaps, if the Princess could only overcome her revulsion and kiss the toad everyone could live happily ever after. Real human history has been very different. 

Human history prior to 1945 was one of a century and a half of bitter struggle by untold millions of women and men around the world against the sadistic cruelty and injustice of genocidal Western capitalism. That long history of struggle achieved a few positive results at end of the Second World War,  including  the start of decolonization and recognition of the right to self-determination. One can argue that those changes have helped the majority world to resist in some degree since 1990 the persistent surges of aggression by the Western powers trying to defend their residual global domination. 

In recent years, Libya has been the most representative case of North American and European sadism and hypocrisy. The opportune study in 2013 by Alan Kuperman of Harvard University's Belfer Center concludes : "Libya’s 2011 uprising was never peaceful, but instead was armed and violent from the start. Muammar al-Qaddafi did not target civilians or resort to indiscriminate force." Kuperman adds, "NATO’s action magnified the conflict’s duration about sixfold, and its death toll at least sevenfold, while also exacerbating human rights abuses, humanitarian suffering, Islamic radicalism, and weapons proliferation in Libya and its neighbors. 

While there has been wide recognition of the deceit-based failure of the wars against Afghanistan and Iraq, not for nothing have few admitted the disastrous failure of the war against Libya. More than any other recent conflict, the sadistic aggression against Libya revealed the falsity not just of Western governments and corporate media but also of Western alternative media, progressive intellectuals and progressive movements. Along the whole length of the Western political spectrum the most distinguished political academic and intellectual leaders were mistaken in the most humiliating and shameful way.

The destruction of Libya shows the completely rotten reality underlying the false claims to moral and intellectual superiority of Western political culture. The contagion of baseless prejudices and rumours glibly treated as fact also extended to many majority world intellectuals. It was truly remarkable how many supposedly cultured, sophisticated individuals, knowing practically nothing about Libya, expressed an irrational antipathy against both the Libyan Jamahiriya and its architect Muammar al-Gaddhafi. 


Only a few leaders, notably Daniel Ortega, Hugo Chávez and Fidel Castro, showed the necessary wisdom  to accurately assess what was happening. This is indisputable. So one obvious conclusion is to question the judgment of all those Western political leaders, intellectuals and many supposedly progressive movements, whatever their political label may be. The aggression against Libya has proven to be the graveyard of the credibility of public political and intellectual life in North America and Europe. 

The UN showed itself yet again to be a reliable accomplice of aggression violating its most fundamental principles. Almost alone, it was the governments of the Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas who maintained a consistent and correct position based on an accurate assessment of the facts. When almost all other world political leaders failed so grossly on Libya, it is indeed interesting to look at why Daniel Ortega, Hugo Chávez, Fidel Castro and their ALBA colleagues got things right. 

More than anyone those leaders and their colleagues like Nicolas Maduro, Evo Morales and Rafael Correa understand the meaning of the true history of mass struggle against the Western imperialist powers throughout the majority world. They were right about Libya and they are right now in their defence of Cuba, Venezuela and Argentina in Latin America and, elsewhere, of the people and government of Syria and the people of eastern Ukraine. Last week they again showed the strength of their anti-imperialist political vision in two very important events for Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Firstly, last week saw the first meeting of the Administrative Council of the long delayed Bank of the South, a South American alternative to the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Secondly,  last week also saw unanimous solidarity with Argentina from Latin American and Caribbean countries in the Organization of American States against US court judgments favouring predatory vulture funds. Both cases indicate the influence and prestige achieved in recent years of the ALBA countries' vision of solidarity based regional integration. 

As the economic and political crisis in the NATO countries deepens, the challenge to its global political and economic domination increases. The West promotes a vision based on greed and competition rigged via unfair trade, manipulative development cooperation and unjust debt. The increasingly influential ALBA vision, of solidarity and cooperation based on fundamental respect for nations' self-determination is also the vision of the Libyan Jamahiriya. In Latin America, the deep moral battle between this vision and the destructive corporate greed of the West plays out mainly in the continuing vicious blockade of Cuba, the violent destabilization of Venezuela and, now, the wanton legal attack on Argentina's economy.


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