A War for Oil? Why, Yes, It Was

Written by Chris Floyd 19 April 2011 7850 Hits

Back in the heady, heated days before the invasion of Iraq, one of the quickest ways to be relegated to the margins of the debate was to claim that the financial interests of politically connected oil companies played any role in the considerations of the great statesmen of the West as they confronted the global menace of Saddam Hussein.

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Three Amigos: Barack and Buddies Pledge the West to Open-Ended War of Aggression

Written by Chris Floyd 16 April 2011 11396 Hits

Dear Good Concerned Engaged Enlightened Rule-of-Law Liberal Progressives: Is it clear enough for you now? Does he have to spell it out for you, slowly, using short and simple words, and maybe some cartoons to make it clear? Your noble Nobel Peace Laureate – bringer of hope and change, restorer of the rule of law, world-historical paradigm-shifter, etc., etc. – has just publicly (not to mention arbitrarily) committed the nation to “the supreme international crime”: aggressive war.He has pledged the blood and treasure of the United States to "regime change" in Libya: that is to say, an act of military aggression designed to overthrow the government of a sovereign nation which has not attacked your own country nor posed the slightest threat to it. This is, of course, precisely the same bla...

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The Ordinary Oak, the Unseen Flower

Written by Chris Floyd 15 April 2011 5160 Hits

One side lies about money; the other side does the same. The only sure thing in this sinister kabuki is that the rich will make out like the bandits they are, and the weakest will go to the wall. You can waste your time trying to parse every little twist and turn of the "policies" of these murderous poltroons, as they set about gutting the carcass of their own country and bombing the hell out of several others; you can pretend their words have meaning, that they aren't the howls and grunts of brutal degenerates given over, sad wretches, to evil ... But me, I'm off to read Machado, to hear himSing of the ordinary oak,the branch cut off by the axe,and the flower that no one looks at.Let the damned bury the damned in those vast marble tombs along the Potomac. I'm going to wash away their s...

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After Lear: Questions and Enactments

Written by Chris Floyd 11 April 2011 5004 Hits

After Lear, walking unfamiliar streets in search of a pub, we found that we had circled back behind the theatre. There was a crowd bunching in a passageway, gathered around a small, white-haired man in a trim blue blazer; he was smiling politely, responding affably, signing programs proffered mostly by aged hands.Not twenty minutes before, we had seen him die on the stage beside his hanged daughter, in the great existential boomerang of their earlier, rapturous reunion."No cause, no cause," she had said then, as her hands sought his ravaged face – the shattering scene, the heart of the oeuvre, the enacted ritual of transcendent forgiveness, so much harder-striking, deeper-delving than any seen in the cathedral up the street. Was this wiped out by the double deaths, by the whispered roar...

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Drifting Too Far From Shore: The Unresisted Rise of the Elite

Written by Chris Floyd 08 April 2011 7987 Hits

In the LRB, David Runciman provides some telling insights in a review of recent books about the “off-shoring” of the world economy into tax havens, where the hyper-elite hide their money from the taxes and regulations that ordinary citizens are subject to. The review also deals with the political machinations involved in this corrosive process, which lies behind much of our dysfunctions and discontents. You should read the whole article, which provides rich historical context, but are some excerpts, in medias res:

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Ageless Emblem

Written by Chris Floyd 05 April 2011 4955 Hits

The tombstone of Flavinus,from the Ala Petriana,stationed in Britain,shows him horsed, rearingabove a naked captive.This is the pose he desiredto carry his nameinto eternity: brandishingthe standard, proud, honored.The captive is lion-faced,wild and bearded,on all fours,clinging to a post,tensed for the blow.He could have come from Blake,some lost engraving,the carved lines chargedwith living frenzy,history’s flesh.

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Eternal Punishment: Obama Leads Third Century of Imperial Revenge on Haiti

Written by Chris Floyd 02 April 2011 9087 Hits

The blood and thunder (or is it thud and blunder?) of the American-led intervention in Libya has obscured one of the more revealing episodes of our times -- especially for those many millions who still cling to the idea that Barack Obama is somehow an improvement, however slight, over the ruthless, lawless, corroded souls who preceded him in the post of imperial manager.We speak of course of the American rigging of the election in battered, helpless Haiti -- a brazen effort to disenfranchise the majority of the population and ensure the election of a vicious -- but acquiescent -- client to the presidency. This sordid episode comes complete with a personal intervention by the Nobel Peace Laureate himself to try to continue the exile and persecution of the democratically elected Haitian p...

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An Urgent Call: Act Now to Save a Valuable Voice

Written by Chris Floyd 30 March 2011 6321 Hits

Arthur Silber, one of the most incisive and eloquent analysts writing today, is, in his own words, "sick, broke and scared." Silber is wracked by chronic and worsening health problems, which he is having to endure in dire poverty. Voluntary contributions to his website are his only source of income; but of course, when he is sick, as he often is, he can't post new material, and therefore donations drop off.

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Ancient Poison Bears New Fruit: Western Frenzy Grows in Libya

Written by Chris Floyd 21 March 2011 8095 Hits

The American war against Libya grew in intensity on Sunday, raining death in all directions -- including on civilian vehicles and Libyan forces in full retreat. Behind the full-scale barrage launched by the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, the armed opposition led by recent henchmen of Moamar Gadafy pressed forward in a military offensive. Libyan soldiers were gunned down as they fled -- a reprise of the "turkey shoot" American forces conducted on retreating Iraqis back in the first glorious Gulf War. (But weren't they supposed to retreat? Wasn't that the purpose of the UN directive? Oh, it's so confusing!)Here's what happened today, following yesterday's hell-storm of 110 Tomahawk missiles:

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First Blood: American Missiles Rain Down on Libya

Written by Chris Floyd 19 March 2011 7971 Hits

When the UN intervention into Libya was first announced, we immediately heard how the United States would not be in the forefront of the military action; the lead would be taken by other nations, with US acting largely as a supplier and facilitator for the "broad-based coalition" arrayed against Libya (including some real live Ay-rabs! as the interventionists enthusiastically noted.) But it took less than two days to give the lie to this claim.On Saturday, just after the French -- who have extensive oil interest in Libya -- jumped the gun on the UN coalition and started attacking Libyan ground forces, the United States joined in with a missile attack on Libyan cities. Not a few missiles; not 10 or 30 or 50 missiles -- but a full barrage of 110 Tomahawk missiles, slamming into Tripoli an...

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