No Hope from the U.S. Political System for Palestine or Afghanistan

December 15th 2010 | كتبها

Muhammad Abu Nasr 


Obama is massively unpopular in America right now and the most likely change in 2012 will be some landslide for Republicans, depending, of course, on whom they nominate. But that means that even if Americans are supposedly less enthusiastic about “Israel” and the Zionists, as some pundits have it, it won’t matter much since the Republican right is totally Zionist and neo-con. For example, Rand Paul, the son of Libertarian/Republican Ron Paul, ran for the Senate in Kentucky and won. Rand Paul is scaring the Democrats because he’s supposedly a crazy conservative like his father.  BUT he issued some big announcement when he was running in which he basically pledged eternal allegiance to “Israel” so that shows that the Tea Party candidates can only come to power if they bow to the Zionists- and most of them would anyway.


Many readers may have seen those articles that the Americans are getting irritated by the Zionists and that’s probably true. But there’s no room for the practical expression of such attitudes. Basically, so what? You have a choice of the Dems or Republicans.  And the Republicans are rising and they’re not going to break with the Zionists.


Most Americans are for pulling out of Afghanistan. There are plenty of militarist rightists even who say it’s about time to quit wasting American resources and lives over there. But it doesn’t matter because the right wing keeps playing the ‘support our troops’ theme and that always wins, at least so far. It’ll take some really serious economic collapse for the ‘masses’ to start forcing an end to military involvements abroad since the media treat the military as sacred cows.


So essentially, there’s nothing to hope for from the US political system.


Other than dialectically speaking – in the sense that as the country slides towards collapse it seems to pursue self-destructive policies ever more single-mindedly – because the military-financial-industrial elite lives off wars. But those depend on massive deficits and increasing economic chaos. So at some point it will become unsustainable.

Ironically, the US defeated the USSR because the US had vast economic strength while the soviets scrimped and saved to stand up to the Americans with a military not backed by an economic base.


And now the US has only been able to maintain the society of ‘universal prosperity’ by letting the working people sustain themselves on credit cards until that approach just maxed itself out. Now we find that the US has a hollow economy and . . . a huge military. That is, the US is now very like where the USSR was a few decades ago – with a massive military it can’t afford.


And as it collapses the US will keep on building and sustaining its empire and its bases at all costs – while abandoning all its domestic social programs, such as they are – because the military is what makes it appear to be a power and because that’s one of the key sources of US income other than financial fictions.


So for a while at least, militarism will more likely be on the rise and so far there are really no signs that the working people are beginning to call that militarism into question even as they lose jobs and benefits one after the other. Perhaps eventually they will. But when they do there will be a huge rightwing that will moan and groan about how they used to be great and how they need another Ronald Reagan to revive their imperial fortunes.


So basically, nobody should be banking on the US waking up or turning against “Israel” or helping progressive causes or anything else any time soon. The tide is going all the other way.


This has two important implications, however.  The first is that Palestinians, Afghanis, and other oppressed Third World people can only achieve liberation by increasing the cost of the occupations they reel under to the point of making them totally untenable for the occupying powers. 


The second implication is a corollary of the first, in fact, since it necessarily implies that Arab solidarity groups in the U.S., or the anti-war movement, can only play second-fiddle to the actual liberation struggles taking place on the ground.  Without an effective struggle on the ground, Westerners are less likely to listen to them.  On the other hand, demanding that the armed struggle back home should stop so solidarity groups and anti-war activists could become better-able to win over Western public opinion is futile and extremely counterproductive.  The same is true for deserting principles and objectives to allegedly ” infiltrate the mainstream”. 


To clarify, it’s important for Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, and progressives who find themselves in the US to express solidarity with the national liberation movements in various ways, but essentially on a people-to-people basis. A lot of good can be done just by interacting with common people and explaining the common sense reality of occupation and the national liberation struggle. It is pointless and even harmful, however, to entertain illusions that the US imperialist political system can be somehow “won over” to our causes. The US imperialist system lives at the expense of the peoples of the world and no politicians, no matter how liberal, will ever be able to change that in the foreseeable future.





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