clap clap blog: we have moved
Thursday, April 10, 2003
In the frat-boy named"Syria and Iran Must Get Their Turn", The American Enterprise Institute, a primary incubator of the Bush-Rumsfeld-Cheney-Wolfowitz foreign policy, says the two countries are up for a whooping, since the preordained "an American success in Iraq [has] fatally undermine[d] the authority of the tyrants in Damascus and Tehran." Rumsfeld and Cheney and others are talking about the necessity of invading, with Wolfowitz the most bold. Michael Ledeen criticizes everyone besides them and Bush, from Richard Haass to Henry Kissenger. At this point, it seems that the likely alternative to neo-conservative foreign policy is straight-up old-school realism. But that nearly destroyed the West, as well, during the Cold War, and resulted in yucky things like right-wing coups and human rights massacres throughout the world.
On a more historical level, this administration almost has a pre-19th century view of politics. It's a Protestant Zionism not seen since maybe the first of the 1800s when the United States sought to consolidate its power over Amerindians and Africans by placing outside the bounds of humanity through a creepy process of racialization that combined Roman imperial mythology with pseudo-scientific Teutonicism and Puritan "chosen people" exceptionalism. Before this merger many disparate historical components, the people the West chose to exploit were pretty much kept in chains by masters who claimed they were heathens beyond redepemtion. However, as Africans started becoming Christians a new system had to be devised. Thus race and white supremacy.
Through an conjunction of events that, I'm sure, everyone from academics to demagogues to folk artists will be trying to figure out for centuries, it seems that the system of racialization is not working well enough now that we've crossed the Bridge into the New Millenium and Seinfeld was canceled.
This adminstration and its coterie of imperial scoundrals have invoked a exclusive religious fundamentalism that hasn't had this much military and economic thrust for about 500 years. I think it's why most of "old" central Europe, and the British public, is so opposed to war (and why they invented Lockean liberalism, even if it doesn't work very well). They know the wars of ideology of this century and have an historical memory of the religious wars fought on their soil in the Middle-Ages that left millions of corpses strewn bloody and rotten across their continent. Perhaps that is why they don't want to invade Mesopotamia.