12 January 2007

You Have Been Told

G W Bush occupies the presidency of the United States of America. When he makes announcements he does so as the mouthpiece of the ruling class of that country, which is at the same time the most aggressive component of the international capitalist system first called Imperialism by J A Hobson and his contemporaries, including V I Lenin.

His recent speech on the so called surge in Iraq threatens two things in the short term with a possibility of a third, major thing. The context includes that of a new attack on another country, Somalia, in addition to Iraq and Afghanistan.

The surge will not involve a lot of new troops. The USA does not have such troops. Even if it did have the twenty thousand or thirty thousand that are mentioned on top of the existing one hundred and fifty thousand already deployed, the numbers are marginal and could not be decisive, as claimed.

What the Bush announcement threatens is a change in the Rules of Engagement in Iraq. These are the instructions given to the troops. The existing rules allow the troops to do what they want, up to the point of genocide, as they did in the city of Falluja. The new rules will make genocide not optional, but compulsory. The US military is descending into the hell of arbitrary, unrestrained, irrational, post modern warfare as once practiced in Vietnam and as practiced now by the Israelis in Palestine.

The arbitrary violence has already been exported to the African continent. The taking off of the AC 130 that strafed Somalis this week marks a new stage in Imperialist violence, as well as a reversion to the practices of the Rhodesian Arthur Bomber Harris in the 1920s and 1930s. We are going backwards to military colonialism. This is what is called reaction.

The Bush announcement mouths a false pretext for attacks on Syria and on Iran. Insofar as such lies are a necessary part of US politics, it has significance, perhaps. But it should not obscure the fact that US Imperialism, and the wars that it involves, are in any case enthusiastically supported by all the ruling-class factions in the USA, whether of the Republican party or of the Democratic Party. Pretexts are hardly necessary. The point is to note the direct instruction, in military terms, to take tactical steps. One such step was taken at the moment of the speech. It was the violation, by US troops, of the Iranian consulate in Erbil, Iraq (A famous, ancient city on a hill. See the picture above).

So the speech is no more than an echo of things that are already happening.

The third possibility is not specifically mentioned but is flagged by the mention of deployment of Patriot missiles. These particular missiles are very expensive but completely ineffective. They are supposed to be an anti-missile defence, but they do not work. They only serve the positional purpose of menacing war. Their deployment is the defensive prelude to an aggressive attack, and is seen as such in military terms.

The deployment of Patriots is a way of encouraging the Israelis to take the final risk, which is that of bombing Iran with nuclear weapons. This horror will be done in the name of the Jews. It is almost unconscionable (i.e. almost impossible to think about). Yet the Bush speech tells us that the US ruling class wants us to think about it. They want what they are doing to be understood, not as madness, but as deliberate cruelty. They want us to know that what they are going to do is not a mistake, but the wilful action of a terrifying, unrestrainable power.

As South Africans we know that the most terrifying power can be brought down by courageous organisation and mass action. We must stand up and give an example, once again.

In South Africa the SACP has issued its congratulatory message on the 95th Anniversary of the African National Congress. It is also a concise and significant statement of the concrete situation politically in the country today.

Click on this link:

SACP message on 95th Anniversary of the ANC (1634 words)


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