Archive for the Neo-colonialism Category

Why U.S. rulers fear new Asian investment bank “AIIB” [Workers World]

Posted in Africa, Bill Clinton, Bolivia, China, China-US relations, Economy, Ecuador, France, Germany, IMF - International Monetary Fund, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Neo-colonialism, U.K., US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, Venezuela, Wall Street, World War II on March 28, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Deirdre Griswold March 24, 2015

Britain, France, Italy and Germany have agreed to join China in establishing an Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. China has already announced it will put up $50 billion in initial capital.

It is too early to say what role this bank will play in helping underdeveloped countries modernize their infrastructure. Negotiations among the principals on the bank’s structure and policies are expected to take place for at least a year. What will emerge cannot be predicted at this time.

But one thing is very clear: Wall Street and Washington are fuming over the fact that the European imperialist countries are joining in, despite strong U.S. pressure to stay out.

Criticism of the new development bank by the U.S. has begun, with government officials telling the media they fear it will undermine the “good work” done by the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, which, they say, have aided developing countries while imposing regulations to protect the environment and help the poor.

You’re choking on this outrageous lie right now? So are we.

Tons of both popular and scholarly analyses of these institutions, and especially of the “structural adjustment programs” they have forced down the throats of poor countries, show that the kind of “development” they foster has usually done just the opposite: stripped countries of needed government services, increased their indebtedness and hurt the environment, all to benefit the financial institutions of the imperialists.

Take the West African countries of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, for example, which have been going through the most horrific public health emergency caused by the spread of the Ebola virus. These countries are so poor that, even after Liberia declared an end to new cases, a televised news report on the return of a score of students to classes pointed out that their grammar school, which when full serves 1,000 students, has no electricity and no running water.

On Dec. 22, The Lancet, a preeminent British medical journal, published a commentary called “The International Monetary Fund and the Ebola outbreak.” It reads: “A major reason why the outbreak spread so rapidly was the weakness of health systems in the region. … Since 1990, the IMF has provided support to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, for 21, 7 and 19 years, respectively, and at the time that Ebola emerged, all three countries were under IMF programs. However, IMF lending comes with strings attached — so-called ‘conditionalities’ — that require recipient governments to adopt policies that have been criticized for prioritizing short-term economic objectives over investment in health and education.”

The authors add that “economic reform programs by the IMF have required reductions in government spending, prioritization of debt service, and bolstering of foreign exchange reserves.” In other words, recipient countries — which should be receiving reparations for all the wealth extracted from them by colonial rule — have instead been forced to cut back on health care, education and other services in order to pay interest on loans.

* Bretton Woods, the IMF and World Bank *

Why does the U.S. ruling class feel particularly threatened by this new China-headed development bank? Because U.S. banks have dominated the financial architecture of the capitalist world for decades. The U.S. emerged from World War II as the undisputed global industrial and financial powerhouse, while Europe and Japan were in ruins and all regions involved in the world war were suffering.

The intention of the U.S. imperialist ruling class to translate its military and industrial muscle into financial domination over the rest of the world was made clear even before the war ended, with the founding of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank at the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944. This conclave in New Hampshire of the soon-to-be-victorious Allied powers was dominated by Washington and London. It established the “tradition” that the president of the World Bank would always come from the U.S.

One can read many critiques of these institutions. One was an interview by Greg Palast with Joseph Stieglitz, a former chief economist of the World Bank, member of Bill Clinton’s cabinet and chair of his Council of Economic Advisers who turned against his former bosses.

Stieglitz told Palast that when nations are “down and out, [the IMF] squeezes the last drop of blood out of them. They turn up the heat until, finally, the whole cauldron blows up.” He referred to these social explosions as “IMF riots,” pointing to what happened when the IMF eliminated food and fuel subsidies in Indonesia in 1998, when it made Bolivia increase water prices in 2000, and when the World Bank imposed a rise in cooking gas prices on Ecuador in February 2001. (“IMF’s Four Steps to Damnation,” The Observer, April 29, 2001)

In Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, the people have tried to get rid of governments that served as tools of these imperialist-dominated financial institutions and have looked for other ways to climb out of poverty. In Latin America, the result has been ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America) — an alliance of countries, led by Venezuela, that is trying to break free of the stranglehold over their economies imposed by U.S. imperialism for nearly two centuries.

The anti-colonial revolutions that began in Asia in the 1930s and spread throughout the so-called Third World in the 1950s and 1960s drove out the structures of direct colonial rule. Bretton Woods was the answer of the imperialists: Keep the masses of people enslaved to the banks.

Washington’s objections to the new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank have nothing to do with anything except the fear of U.S. capitalists that they could be losing their grip on what has been their main tool for world domination. As a backup, of course, they have the Pentagon, making the struggle against imperialist war ever more urgent.

Article link: http://www.workers.org/articles/2015/03/24/why-u-s-rulers-fear-new-asian-investment-bank/

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Is the U.S. a Fascist Society? Fascism is a Political Economic Structure Which Serves Corporate Interests [Globalresearch.ca]

Posted in Corporate Media Critique, Fascism, Media cover-up, Nazism, Neo-colonialism, New York Times lie, Police, Police brutality, Police State, US imperialism, USA on March 18, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Danny Haiphong
March 14, 2015

[This article was originally published on 8 April 2014.]

Most Americans are taught in school that fascism is a ruthless one party dictatorship, the most popular example being Nazi Germany. This is a misconception. Fascism is a political economy, not merely a political system that existed in one moment of history. Fascism, as defined by Black revolutionary and assassinated political prisoner George Jackson, is the complete control of the state by monopoly capital. Fascism is the last stage of capitalism in the heart of the US imperial center where the relationship between the state and corporation becomes indiscernible. A difficult, but necessary, task for the left in this period is to acknowledge that fascism is the system of rule in the United States.

The privatization of the public sector, de-unionization of the entire labor force, and violent austerity are the seeds of domestically grown fascism in the economic realm. Such fascist activity has brought about the rapid decline of political and economic conditions for the working class and the rapid accumulation of wealth and profit for the ruling class. Workers are doing more and more on the job for less and less pay. The jobless are either searching desperately for work or not searching at all. Shelters are overflowing and turning the homeless away. The US has 25 percent of the world’s prisoners despite only possessing 5 percent of the world’s population. Mass joblessness, poverty, imprisonment, and homelessness are material forces that breed fear and competition amongst the working class.

The paradox of fascism lies in its ability to sustain and grow in the midst of deteriorating conditions for the majority of the population. The racist foundation of this country is useful in this regard. The white working class steadfastly defends its privileges obtained from white imperial pillage of Black and indigenous people both here and abroad. The white ruling class maintains unity with the white working class because, although exploitation has heightened for everyone, Black and indigenous people (including undocumented immigrants) remain economically and socially oppressed to a much harsher degree than Whites. To ensure racism does not precipitate a radical struggle between white supremacy and Black freedom, the US ruling class has molded and trained a Black political class. This class of neo-colonial elites, with Barack Obama leading the way, works in the interests of fascism by protecting the rule of the white ruling class while teaching the entire Black community that Black faces in high imperial places is not only desired, but also worthy of staunch defense.

Furthermore, fascism relies on a racist enforcement arm to control the political direction of the oppressed. The expanded surveillance and military state that currently spies, detains, and wiretaps the 99 percent remains more dangerous and repressive for the Black community. The vast majority of wiretaps, police and vigilante murders, and stop-and-frisks happen to Black and brown people. So instead of joining forces with the Black community to build a powerful movement, exploited white Americans can still rely on the state to enforce racism on its behalf.

The US corporate media and education system provide the ideological chains of fascism. In this period, both systems serve as mouthpieces for US imperial ambitions, values, and behaviors. Fascism is normalized in the American mind through the inculcation of racism, individualism, and a depoliticized and inaccurate conception of history and politics. The US education system conditions the oppressed and oppressors into their positions in society. Black and indigenous youth attend factory schools that emphasize obedience to authority, which instills a dehumanized and subservient disposition for a future in low-wage work or prison. From K-12, Black working class youth are taught to “pledge allegiance” to the flag of genocide and colonialism in over-crowded, police-occupied, and privatized schools. White youth “pledge allegiance” in better-funded schools more capable of conditioning them into positions of power. However, all youth are taught a mythological version of US history that applauds white supremacy, colonialism, and capitalist development as “freedom” and “democracy.”

The corporate media, despite being far more monopolized than the US school system, provides a more diverse means of education. Corporations like CNN and the New York Times habitually lie about the facts of political events to protect the white ruling class and its institutions from accountability. Corporate hip-hop, music, and television entertainment compliment corporate news syndicates by doping the mind full of mindless garbage. It matters little if the media of choice is watching “Scandal”, listening to Nicki Minaj on the radio, or reading the Washington Post. The boardrooms of five corporations are manufacturing consent to the US fascist system. Malcolm X succinctly summarized the function of the corporate media when he said “if you are not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing…”

Excerpted; full article: http://www.globalresearch.ca/is-the-us-a-fascist-society-examining-the-existence-of-fascism-in-the-united-states/5377146

China challenges US economic war against Russia [World Socialist Website]

Posted in BRICS - Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa, China, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, NATO, Neo-colonialism, Obama, Pentagon, Russia, SCO Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Sino-Russian, Syria, Ukraine, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, USSR, Wall Street on January 7, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Alex Lantier
23 December 2014
Directly challenging the NATO powers’ policy of cutting off credit to Russia to undermine the ruble and bankrupt the Russian economy, China is pledging to extend financial aid to Moscow.

On Saturday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi stressed the need for mutual aid between China and Russia in remarks on the ruble crisis, which has seen a drastic 45 percent fall in its value against the dollar this year. “Russia has the capability and the wisdom to overcome the existing hardship in the economic situation,” Wang said. “If the Russian side needs it, we will provide necessary assistance within our capacity.”

On Sunday, Chinese Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng told Hong Kong’s Phoenix TV that Beijing would strengthen ties with Moscow in energy and manufacturing, predicting that Chinese-Russian trade would hit its target of $100 billion this year despite the ruble crisis. As the ruble’s value in dollars or euros swings wildly, Gao proposed moving away from the dollar in financing Chinese-Russian trade and instead using the Chinese currency, the yuan or renminbi.

Gao said China would focus on “fundamental factors such as how the two economies complement each other,” Reuters reported. “Capital investors may be more interested in a volatile stock or foreign exchange market. But in terms of concrete cooperation between the two nations, we shall have a balanced mentality and push forward those cooperations,” Gao said.

Yesterday, China Daily cited Li Jianmin of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences saying that aid to Russia could pass through channels like the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) or the BRICS forum. Significantly, both the SCO (an alliance of China, Russia, and Central Asian states) and the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) exclude the United States and Europe.

Li noted that already last month, when Chinese and Russian premiers Li Keqiang and Dmitry Medvedev met in Kazakhstan, they signed extensive deals on railways, infrastructure and development in Russia’s Far East region, north of China. “Loans, cooperation in major projects, and participation in domestic infrastructure investment in Russia are options on the table,” he added. In one such deal last month, China signed a $400-billion, 30-year deal to buy Russian gas.

These offers of assistance cut across the economic war on Russia launched by US and European imperialism to punish Moscow for opposing their neo-colonial restructuring of Eurasia.
In retaliation for Russian support for President Bashar al-Assad against NATO’s proxy war in Syria and Russian opposition to the NATO-backed Ukrainian regime in Kiev, the NATO powers sought to financially strangle Russia. As Russian oil revenues fell in line with the fall in world oil prices and the ruble collapsed, they worked to cut off credit to Russia and demanded that Russia acquiesce to the Kiev regime.

The basic financial mechanism of this strategy was laid out in London’s Financial Times by Anders Aslund of the Petersen Institute for International Economics. “Russia has received no significant international financing—not even from Chinese state banks—because everybody is afraid of US financial regulators,” he wrote. With a yearly capital outflow of $125 billion, liquid foreign currency reserves of only $200 billion, and total foreign debts of $600 billion, Russia would run out of dollars and be bankrupted in as little as two years, Aslund calculated.

Now, however, Beijing appears to be accepting the risk of a showdown with the United States and publicly preparing to throw a financial lifeline to Russia. Chinese currency reserves of $3.89 trillion are the world’s largest and, on paper at least, allow Beijing to easily repay Russia’s debts.

Significantly, the calls of Wang and Gao to aid Russia came a day after a divided European Union (EU) summit on Russia last week. Though the EU supported US sanctions against Russia, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, French President François Hollande and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi all publicly opposed calls for more sanctions. Leading European newspapers also warned of the risk of a collapse of the Russian state…

…The economic conflicts erupting between the major powers over the oil crisis and the imperialist war drive in Eurasia testifies to the advanced state of the crisis of world capitalism, and the rising risk of world war.

Chinese aid to Russia, should it materialize, will exacerbate US conflict with China. Washington has tried to militarily encircle it through the “pivot to Asia,” allying with Japan, Australia, and India. Plans for war with China, both economic and military, are doubtless being pored over on Wall Street and in the Pentagon.

A year ago, in an article titled “China must not copy the Kaiser’s errors,” Financial Times columnist Martin Wolf warned China against any action that could be construed as a challenge to US global hegemony. He indicated that a Chinese policy replicating the German Kaiser’s challenge to British hegemony before the outbreak of World War I in 1914 would lead to a similar outcome: all-out conflict.

“If open conflict arrived, the US could cut off the world’s trade with China. It could also sequester a good part of China’s liquid foreign assets,” Wolf wrote, recalling that China’s “foreign currency reserves, equal to 40 percent of GDP are, by definition, held abroad.” Such naked theft of trillions of dollars that China has earned from trade with the United States and Europe would directly raise the prospect of a collapse of global trade and preparation for war between nuclear-armed powers.

With its ever more reckless and violent policies, US imperialism is vastly overplaying its hand, discrediting itself at home and fueling opposition from rival states. By driving Russia and China together, in particular, Washington is undoing what was long seen as a major achievement of US imperialist statecraft: the 1972 rapprochement between US President Richard Nixon and Chinese leader Mao Zedong, which turned China into a US ally against the former Soviet Union.

“Many Chinese people still view Russia as the big brother, and the two countries are strategically important to each other,” Renmin University Associate Dean Jin Canrong said, referring to Soviet backing for China as it fought the United States in the Korean War, shortly after the…Chinese Communist Party (CCP) came to power in 1949. “For the sake of national interests, China should deepen cooperation with Russia when such cooperation is in need.”

“Russia is an irreplaceable partner on the international stage,” the CCP-linked Global Times wrote in an editorial yesterday. “China must take a proactive attitude in helping Russia walk out of the current crisis.”

Edited by Zuo Shou

Article link: http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/12/23/chin-d23.html

US military basing deal in the Philippines: A step towards neocolonial rule [World Socialist Website]

Posted in Afghanistan, Anti-China propaganda exposure, Bourgeois parliamentary democracy, China, China-US relations, Encirclement of China, George W. Bush, Iraq, Neo-colonialism, Obama, Pentagon, Philippines, South China Sea, US foreign occupation, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War on May 27, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

17 May 2014

The Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) between Washington and Manila, signed on April 28, starkly exposes the reactionary character of the Obama administration’s “pivot to Asia.” As US imperialism sets out to militarily encircle and isolate China, posing the risk of global war, it is seeking to impose neocolonial rule on oppressed countries throughout Asia.

The EDCA’s ten pages effectively convert the Philippines, a former US colony, into a US military base, under a legal framework virtually indistinguishable from the neocolonial decrees Washington imposed during hated wars in US-occupied Iraq or Afghanistan. This deal was prepared behind the backs of the US and Filipino working class, by the Obama administration and the corrupt regime of President Benigno Aquino III.

The deal grants to the United States exclusive use of an undisclosed number of “agreed locations,” for which no rent shall be paid and on which the Pentagon can base an unlimited number of forces. US forces and contractors in the country are not subject to Philippine law, having extraterritorial immunity from local jurisdiction. Only one designated Filipino will be allowed access to US bases in the country, and that only after he has obtained permission from US forces.

The ten-year deal renews automatically, and the Philippine judiciary and other branches of government are explicitly prohibited by Article XI of the document from reviewing any disputes pertaining to the EDCA.

In content and in form, the EDCA is a reactionary and illegal document. It does an end run around the Philippine Senate, which is constitutionally required to authorize any foreign troops or bases in the country, presenting the deal as an agreement between the Pentagon and the Philippine military. The semblance of independent Philippine partnership in the deal is a political fiction: the Philippine military was created by the United States during its fifty-year colonial rule, and much of the current top brass was trained at the US Military Academy at West Point.

The formulation of the EDCA and its adoption by Washington and Manila without any significant protest is a warning to the international working class.

The move to establish US neocolonial rule in the Middle East, which under the presidency of George W. Bush took the form of the invasion of Iraq, was not an aberration, but an expression of the world strategy of the American ruling class. Looking to shore up its eroded position within the world economy, Washington is bent on militarily controlling the world. Under Obama, the Democratic Party has taken up the neocolonial policy of the Bush administration and expanded it into a drive for domination over all of Eurasia…

…The EDCA and the Obama administration rely on petty-bourgeois “left” groups on both sides of the Pacific. While groups in the United States such as the International Socialist Organization function as thinly-veiled propagandists for Obama’s foreign policy, the Philippine Maoists have worked up noxious anti-Chinese hysteria that serves to justify Manila’s collaboration with the “pivot to Asia.”

They feed off the broader atmosphere stoked by the Philippine press, which publishes headlines alleging invasions by Beijing of Philippine territory in the South China Sea on a weekly basis…

Joseph Santolan

Excerpted; full article link: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/05/17/pers-m17.html

Editorial on Sewol sinking – ‘It’s only too easy for ROK President Park to point her finger at “murderous acts”’ [The Hankyoreh / 한겨레]

Posted in Lee Myung-bak, Neo-colonialism, south Korea on May 2, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

The Hankyoreh has been publishing a succession of harshly-critical editorials about anti-democratic south Korean President Park in light of governmental incompetence regarding the Sewol sinking. Criticism is totally deserved; but there also is a air of opportunism here, since the Hankyoreh correlates with the south Korean neoliberal opposition party which has been marginalized by Park’s dirty political tricks that secured her the Presidency. There is also an extremely unsavory ‘colonized’ tendency in these editorials to point at the US government and/or Obama as a model for how to deal with disasters. Anybody familiar with 9/11 and its aftermath, Hurricane Katrina, or the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico can only be shocked reading this. And then there’s the whole question of the direct damage done to the Korean peninsula and its people by the US government during the “Korean War”, and in the ongoing occupation since. – Zuo Shou

April 22, 2014

President Park Geun-hye made a statement yesterday describing the abandonment of the sinking Sewol ferry by its captain and a few of its crew members as a “murderous act.” She also pointed the finger at government officials, who she said would be “sternly held accountable.” Her wording was strong, and focused entirely on punishment and blame. Yet somehow they seemed to ring hollow. It was impossible to shake the sense that her focus was on the wrong place.

The sinking of the Sewol was not the only disaster last week. We also saw massive holes in the government’s disaster response system and crisis management capabilities. The initial response fell well short of what was needed, and the relevant agencies failed to cooperate; the disaster response manuals shut down at a pivotal moment. The government was frantic when it needed to be composed, inconsistent when it needed to be clear. The Blue House was no exception. Yet here the President is blasting the captain and blaming the civil servants as though it has nothing to do with her.

Park emphasized the importance of a “powerful disaster response control tower” and called for “reflection on the government’s crisis response system and initial measures.” But one gets the sense that the reflection really needs to start at the Blue House itself. As when campaigning for president, Park pledged to build an “integrated system with unified disaster management duties,” a plan that was further developed after she took office when control tower functions were assigned to a Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters under the Ministry of Security and Public Administration. That system has failed to work properly, as the events of the past few days have made clear. Instead of rushing to point fingers and criticize, the President’s first order of business should be fixing the system.

During the Roh Moo-hyun administration (2003-08), the Blue House’s National Security Council was also tasked with serving as a crisis management control tower for disaster situations. A state-of-the-art situation room was set up in an underground bunker at the Blue House, with an electronic situation board providing a clear picture of the situation on the ground based on information provided in real time by the leading government agencies. It was a system that allowed for a swift and systematic response to any disaster. But the NSC lost this role when the Lee Myung-bak administration took over and set about erasing signs that Roh had ever been there; under the Park administration, it has yet to be restored. Is it too much of a stretch to think those “golden 93 minutes” in the disaster’s initial stages might not have been helplessly wasted if the Blue House had this kind of system in place? It is a troubling thought…

Full editorial link: http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/633991.html

Original editorial title: ‘It’s only too easy to Park to point her finger at “murderous acts”’
***
See also other Hankyoreh editorial/articles:

[Editorial] “South Korea has rulers, but no leaders” (April 25, 2014) – http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/634522.html

“Sewol victims’ families’ anger comes to boiling point” (April 26, 2014) – http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/634632.html
^^^ LOVE THIS ONE for the photo of a hurled water bottle at the moment it contacts the head of the Prime Minister

[Editorial] “After Sewol sinking, President should fall on her own sword” (April 28, 2014) – http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/634836.html

[Editorial] ‘What we really need is a “remodeling of the President”’ (April 30, 2014) – http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/635155.html

[Editorial] “The Blue House’s shameful actions” (May 1, 2014) – http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/635330.html

AND

South Korean prime minister resigns over ferry disaster [World Socialist Website] – https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/04/28/kore-a28.html

Manila files legal case against Beijing’s South China Sea claim [World Socialist Website]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, Beijing, Black propaganda, China, China-bashing, China-US relations, Neo-colonialism, Obama, Philippines, South China Sea, US imperialism, USA on April 6, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Joseph Santolan
3 April 2014

On March 30, Philippine President Benigno Aquino’s administration filed a legal case before the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) disputing Beijing’s claim to waters and land features in the South China Sea. The ITLOS is an intergovernmental body established by the United Nations for adjudicating maritime disputes in accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Manila’s case, which was electronically submitted, was nearly 4,000 pages long. It argues that China’s South China Sea claim—referred to as “the nine-dash claim” because of the nine-dash line drawn around the disputed waters on Chinese territorial maps—is based exclusively on historical documents and not the proximate land features, such as the Spratly Islands. Manila insists that the Philippines has sovereignty over spits of rock, sandbars and atolls that continue to project above sea level at high tide and that each of these bits of earth grants Manila sovereignty over the surrounding waters.

The legal case marks a significant escalation of the tensions in the region, which have already reached a boiling point. As with each previous heightening of conflicts in the South China Sea, the real author of this latest provocation is not Manila, but Washington.

Beijing has consistently maintained that disputes in the region must be resolved on a bilateral basis and not through multilateral talks or international adjudication. Washington has repeatedly stated that “freedom of navigation” is an issue in which it has a “national interest.” It has pressured Beijing and the rival South China Sea claimants to address their disputes in multilateral discussions, with Washington as a participant.

Manila’s legal case was drafted and will be argued by the US law firm, Foley Hoag, which has close ties to the Obama administration. The firm gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to Obama’s election campaigns, and Obama appointed a Foley Hoag senior partner as ambassador to Norway. The lead lawyer on the Manila’s ITLOS case is Foley Hoag partner Paul Reichler.

Beijing has refused to respond to the case and will not appear before the ITLOS. A five-member panel of judges will review Manila’s case and reach a legal decision, which is non-binding on the disputants.

According to the Aquino administration, Beijing sent requests to Manila during the final week of January through an emissary from Brunei and through “diplomatic backchannels” requesting that Manila delay the submission of its ITLOS suit in order to “ease tension in the region.”

The response was sharp and clearly orchestrated by Washington. The New York Times conducted an exclusive interview with President Aquino, in which he pointedly compared China to Nazi Germany and the disputed South China Sea to the Sudetenland, which Hitler annexed before the Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia.

At the same time, the US State department issued several statements that for the first time openly disputed Beijing’s claim to the South China Sea. Previously Washington adopted a posture of neutrality of territorial claims—while tacitly encouraging allies such as the Philippines to aggressively press their case…

Excerpted; full article link: https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2014/04/03/phil-a03.html
*****
See also “Commentary: Manila’s wrong calculation” [Xinhua] — http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-03/31/c_133226771.htm

Neocons Have Weathered the Storm [Consortium News]

Posted in Fascism, George W. Bush, Nazism, Neo-colonialism, Pentagon, Russia, Ukraine, US imperialism, USA on March 26, 2014 by Zuo Shou / 左手

March 14, 2014

Exclusive: Official Washington’s bipartisan hysteria over Ukraine and Crimea is evidence that the neocons not only weathered the public fury over the Iraq War but are now back shaping U.S. geopolitical strategies, reports Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

By the middle of last decade, the storm clouds were building over the neocons: their “regime change” in Iraq was a disaster; President George W. Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” speech was a running joke; news articles were appearing about their “dark side” behavior in the “war on terror”; and the public was tired of the blood and treasure being wasted.

You might have expected that the neocons would have been banished to the farthest reaches of U.S. policymaking, so far away that they would never be heard from again. However, instead of disappearing, the neocons have proved their staying power, now reemerging as the architects of the U.S. strategy toward Ukraine.

Neocons played key behind-the-scenes roles in instigating the Feb. 22 coup that overthrew a democratically elected president with the help of neo-Nazi militias; the neocons have since whipped Official Washington into a frenzy of bipartisan support for the coup regime; and they are pushing for a new Cold War if [sic] the people of Crimea vote to leave Ukraine and join Russia.

A few weeks ago, most Americans probably had never heard of Ukraine and had no idea that Crimea was part of it. But, all of a sudden, the deficit-obsessed U.S. Congress is rushing to send billions of dollars to the coup regime in Kiev, as if the future of Ukraine were the most important issue facing the American people…

Excerpted; full article link: http://consortiumnews.com/2014/03/14/neocons-have-weathered-the-storm/