Saturday, November 13, 2010

Back to Empire - Remembrance Week 2010

After some articles are 'put to bed' at FilterBlogs they get a Posthumous Long Tail Aperitif (PLTA); links to related articles published after my original post

Below I said, "With the Afghan war next year entering it's 10th year, the talk is of a 20 year Afghan campaign."

One month later my opinion is now too optimistic:

PLTA for December 6, 2010

CommonDreams: "Petraeus: Expect No 'Victory Parade' in Afghanistan... Ever"


Halifax International Security Form works the term "failed state" - the Empires euphemism for imperial conquest - through every conceivable conversation.

I joined the Common Dreams mailing list the other day, it's a US group championing social justice issues. On November 9th they twigged me to the 2nd Annual Halifax International Security Form.

One week after the US midterms weakened the Obama Administrations grip on power in Washington, the neo-cons are once again chomping on the bit for a US attack on Iran (Washington Post). This time they're proposing a sustained bombing campaign that would wipe out Iran's naval power and air power (no mention of their missile capability).

And the venue for these hawkish speeches? Our very own Halifax Nova Scotia, and on the eve of Remembrance Week!

The Peter MacKay organized 2nd Annual Halifax International Security Form, co-sponsored by the German Marshal Plan Fund of the United States and the Government of Canada, was held this past weekend, Friday, Saturday and Sunday November 5-7. To me it looked like a G20 conference, but with Defence Ministers attending rather than Finance Ministers. Participants included NATO member states defence ministers, NATO applicant countries representatives, NATO think-tank theorists, former military people now working in private defence enterprise, and foreign affairs journalists from many large news organizations.

US President Obama set a deadline of July 2011 for success in the Afghan mission when he announced a 30,000 troop "surge" in Decmeber of 2009. Canada will begin to withdraw her forces next year, Poland in 2012, and the UK in 2014 or 2015.

Canada's Minister of National Defence Peter MacKay gave the keynote at the Halifax Form in which he highlighted 2008 Republican presidential candidate, Republican Senator John McCain, Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State under President George W. Bush, and Ehud Barak, Minister of Defense and Deputy Prime Minister of Israel.

The great theme of the form was the idea of "forward defence", better known as preemptive war, the idea that you take the war to your enemy, rather than wait for them to attack and fight them on your turf. The enemy here it should be noted is not a state, but rather the state of states, the potential of 'failed states' to generate terrorist cadre and organizations --- and thus represents a global national security state lead by the US and policed by NATO troops. NATO is morphing from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (one side in the Cold War) into a global entity.

The War in Afghanistan is central to all this. The continuing Halifax meetings are a philosophical discussion by NATO member states and "applicant states" with troops on the ground. For Canada the idea of keeping our 3,000 troops in country is not on the table, according to the Harper government; but leaving behind 500 to 850 training personal to create a viable Afghan Army, is.

The war against failed states, a euphemism for a series of wars to move oil from central Asia west into refineries owned by US interests, rather than east to refineries owned by the worlds great industrial juggernaut China. It is the framework of the new world order; the uni-polar, American lead Global Empire of capitalist states head together, if necessary, through an un-ending "police action".

Much like Rome in the era of the Ceasars, local institutions and infrastructure can represent the Empires interests - but if this fails - then conquest and sanction are used to force the country in question to submit to the Empire's will.

Kinda like Star Wars. We're the Empire, they're the good looking rebels.

In 2001 the hawks said the war in Afghanistan was going to be a long term commitment, but that the military phase of the war would be short - the mission they said would primarily be about nation building. The distraction of the Iraq war basically guaranteed the hot phase of the Afghan war would be endless - an occupation, an un-winnable war. With the Afghan war next year entering it's 10th year, the talk is of a 20 year Afghan campaign.

Here's the entire speakers list:

Stéphane Abrial, NATO Supreme Allied Commander, Transformation (SACT)
Mohammed Ali Abdullah Abu Luhoum, Head, Department of Economic Relations, General People's Congress, Yemen
James Appathurai, Spokesperson, NATO
Audronius Ažubalis, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lithuania
Ehud Barak, Minister of Defense and Deputy Prime Minister, Israel
Gitte Lillelund Bech, Minister of Defense, Denmark
James Blitz, Defence and Diplomatic Editor, Financial Times
Luvsanvandan Bold, Minister of Defense, Mongolia
Susan Bonner, Washington Correspondent, CBC News
Davor Božinovic, State Secretary for Political Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Croatia
Mark Carney, Governor, Bank of Canada
Carme Chacón, Minister of Defense, Spain
Nick Childs, Defence and Security Correspondent, BBC World Service
Edward Chow, Senior Fellow, Energy and National Security Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies
Roger Cohen, Columnist, The International Herald Tribune
Nusret Cömert, Chairman, PETFORM (Petroleum Platform Association)
Ronald Covais, Vice President, Corporate International Business Development, Lockheed Martin Corporation
Premvir S. Das, Distinguished Fellow, Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, India
Pieter De Crem, Minister of Defense, Belgium
Francis Delon, Secretary General for National Defense, Office of the Prime Minister, France
Pavol Demeš, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, German Marshal Fund of the United States
Karen DeYoung, Senior Diplomatic Correspondent, Associate Editor, The Washington Post
Paula J. Dobriansky, Senior Vice President and Head of Government Affairs for the Americas, Thomson Reuters
Jill Dougherty, Foreign Affairs Correspondent, CNN
Dan Dugas, Journalist
Richard L. Engel, USAF (Ret), Director, Climate Change and State Stability Program, Long Range Analysis Unit, National Intelligence Council
Golnaz Esfandiari, Senior Correspondent, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
Daniel P. Fata, Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States; Vice President, The Cohen Group
Mark C. Fischer, Director of Major Conferences, German Marshall Fund of the United States
Michèle Flournoy, Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, United States
Iulian Fota, Presidential Advisor on National Security, Romania
Lisa Friedman, Deputy Editor, ClimateWire
Alexander Garza, Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs and Chief Medical Officer, Department of Homeland Security, United
Amos Gilad, Director of Policy and Political-Military Affairs, Ministry of Defense, Israel
Misha Glenny, Broadcaster and Author
Lindsey O. Graham, Senator, United States
Camille Grand, Executive Director, The Foundation for Strategic Research
Stephen Hadley, Senior Advisor for International Affairs, United States Institute of Peace
Joseph Hall, Senior Advisor for the Middle East and North Africa, National Democratic Institute
Michael Hastings, Contributing Editor, Rolling Stone
Rex Hughes, Visiting Fellow for Cyber Security, Wolfson College, Cambridge University
Arben Imami, Minister of Defense, Albania
Alina Inayeh, Director, The Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Masafumi Ishii, Ambassador for Policy Planning and International Security Policy and Deputy Director-General, Foreign Policy Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan
Craig Kennedy, President, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Jim Kolbe, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
David J. Kramer, Executive Director, Freedom House
Charles Kupchan, Professor of International Affairs, Georgetown University
Ian O. Lesser, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Robert G. Liberatore, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, Canada
John Manley, President and CEO, Canadian Council of Chief Executives
Gerald Martone, Director of Humanitarian Affairs, International Rescue Committee, New York
John McCain, Senator, United States; Co-Chair, Halifax International Security Forum Congressional Delegation
Murat Mercan, Founding Member and Deputy Chairman, Justice and Development Party, Turkey
Barbara Mikulski, Senator, United States
Michel Miraillet, Director of the Policy Planning Staff, Ministry of Foreign Defense, France
Kunihiko Miyake, Research Director, Cannon Institute for Global Studies
Saad Mohseni, Director, Moby Media Group
Neil Morisetti, Climate and Energy Security Envoy, Ministry of Defence and Foreign and Commonweath Office, United Kingdom
Sean Mulvaney, Director, Economic Policy Program, German Marshall Fund of the United States
Janet Napolitano, Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Walter Natynczyk, Chief of the Defence Staff, Department of National Defence, Canada
Pauline Neville-Jones, Security Minister in the Home Office, The United Kingdom
Natalie Nougayrède, Correspondent, Le Monde
Hiroshi Oe, Director General for International Affairs, Ministry of Defense, Japan
Norman J. Ornstein, Resident Scholar, American Enterprise Institute
Farah Pandith, Special Representative to Muslim Communities, U.S. Department of State
Victor E. Renuart, Jr., Vice President for National Security and Senior Military Advisor for the CEO, BAE Systems, Inc
Condoleezza Rice, Professor of Political Economy and Political Science, Stanford University
Milan Rocen, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Montenegro
Janis Sarts, State Secretary, Ministry of Defense, Latvia
Jeanne Shaheen, Senator, United States Senate
Stefan Schirm, Senior Fellow, Transatlantic Academy
Claudia Schmid, Director, Verfassungsschutz, Berlin
Christian Schmidt, Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister of Defense, Germany
Jeff Sessions, Senator, United States
Najam Sethi, Editor-in-Chief, Friday Times and Dunya TV
Robin Shepherd, Director, International Affairs, the Henry Jackson Society
Mohammad Shtayyeh, Minister, Palestinian Economic Council for Development and Reconstruction
Andrew Small, Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Min-soon Song, Member, National Assembly, South Korea
Janice Gross Stein, Director, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto
Constanze Stelzenmüller, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Dragan Šutanovac, Minister of Defense, Serbia
Sylke Tempel, Editor-in-Chief, Internationale Politik, German Council of Foreign Affairs
Victor Toews, Minister of Public Safety, Canada
Frances Townsend, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Government, Legal and Business Affairs, MacAndrews and Forbes Holdings, Inc.
Daniel Twining, Senior Fellow for Asia, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Mark Udall, Senator, United States; Co-Chair, Halifax International Security Forum Congressional Delegation
Peter Van Praagh, Senior Director, Foreign Policy and Civil Society, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Ivan Vejvoda, Vice President, Programs, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Joshua Walker, Non-Resident Fellow, German Marshall Fund of the United States
Pamela Wallin, Senator, Chair of the Senate Defence Committee, Canada
James Winnefeld, Commander, U.S. Northern Command and Northern American Aerospace Defense Command

Remembrance Day (Week), in my humble opinion, is a time to remember, and learn from, the folly that has lead us here-to, into the dammed thing - not as is much evidenced this year - celebrating the 'Heroes' - those unlucky limbless/headless bastards, the fodder for imperial profit.

The heroes are the ones who stand up against injustice day after day and thus prevent wars from ever starting.

Not too many of those around theses days, but the folks at certainly are.


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