Friday, November 08, 2013

A Rogue State?

Noam Chomsky writes that the United States has become a one party nation and a rogue state:

The U.S. is still a one-party state, the business party. But it only has one faction: moderate Republicans, now called New Democrats (as the U.S. Congressional coalition styles itself).

There is still a Republican organization, but it long ago abandoned any pretense of being a normal parliamentary party. Conservative commentator Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute describes today's Republicans as "a radical insurgency — ideologically extreme, scornful of facts and compromise, dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition": a serious danger to the society.

Chomsky claims that the United States represents a serious danger to other countries. That is why China is calling for the "de-Americanization" of the world -- something that Samuel Huntington foresaw fifteen years ago:

In 1999, political analyst Samuel P. Huntington warned that for much of the world, the U.S. is "becoming the rogue superpower," seen as "the single greatest external threat to their societies."

A few months into the Bush term, Robert Jervis, president of the American Political Science Association, warned that "In the eyes of much of the world, in fact, the prime rogue state today is the United States." Both Huntington and Jervis warned that such a course is unwise. The consequences for the U.S. could be harmful.

It is now common for the U.S. to act alone, without international allies:

To take a typical example, a few weeks ago U.S. special operations forces snatched a suspect, Abu Anas al-Libi, from the streets of the Libyan capital Tripoli, bringing him to a naval vessel for interrogation without counsel or rights. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry informed the press that the actions are legal because they comply with American law, eliciting no particular comment.

For those who claim that America's actions are justified, Chomsky imagines a situation where the shoe would be on the other foot:

Reactions would be a bit different, needless to say, if Cuban special forces kidnapped the prominent terrorist Luis Posada Carriles in Miami, bringing him to Cuba for interrogation and trial in accordance with Cuban law.

In his recent book, How We Lead, former prime minister Joe Clark writes that foreign policy under the Harper government is driven by the same imperative. That kind of behaviour entrenches the rule of the jungle. And, in the jungle, no one is safe.

This entry is cross posted at The Moderate Voice.


Anonymous said...

The Harperites stand at the podium and lecture to everyone, whether the audience be Canadian or international. Their world view is the correct world view in their view. They are, in short pants, arrogant idiots.

And the audience leaves the room whenever Harper, or one of his sycophants, steps up to the microphone.

The world understands the idiocy of the Harperites, even when his tiny hard core Canadian constituency does not.

Owen Gray said...

Your assertion that the world understands Harper is spot on, Anon.

That's why Canada doesn't have a seat on the Security Council.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the fact that US is becoming a rogue superpower, more recently what has disturbed me is their sabotage of the peace treaty that was to take place between the Taliban and the Pakistani government. Why would the United States carry out front strikes, killing the leader who was supposed to sign the treaty? How can this be justified? We need to advocate peace, especially amongst the rising turmoil in the Middle East. The US needs to address it's own problems within its boarders before trying to interfere across boarders.

Owen Gray said...

There used to be respect for international institutions, Anon. Unfortunately, today's leaders have little regard for "soft power." The world is paying the price for that lack of respect.

It is truly sad to see what has happened in the United States in the last twelve years.