The Foundation For International Justice Is Anti-Imperialism

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Above: An Anti-Imperialist Mural in Caracas, Venezuela. From Telesur.

The United States has had a policy of imperialism beginning after the Civil War. The US way of war, developed against Indigenous peoples, spread worldwide as the US sought to extend its power through military force, economic dominance and diplomatic hegemony.

Imperialism is driven by what Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. identified at the end of his life, the triple evils of racism, capitalism, and militarism. Lenin described imperialism as the highest stage of capitalism. Imperialism has justified mass slaughter, resulting in the US killing 20 million people since WW II. The People of the United States must say ‘no’ to imperialism.

Advocacy against imperialism is needed to prevent confusion around US militarism. The US disguises imperialism by attacking so-called “dictatorial” leaders who “use violence against their own people.” This results in Orwellian-phrased “humanitarian” wars – violence by US surrogates inside a country, massive funding to create opposition against a government or economic sanctions that cause widespread suffering.

The propaganda justifying these abuses hides the real intent — expansion of US domination so US corporations can profit from resources and cheap labor under a US-friendly government. People confused by this rhetoric sometimes repeat the propagandistic claims of US imperialists and help justify US intervention.

End US Imperialism from PopularResistance.org

Why US Imperialism Must Be Opposed Today

US imperialism is aggressively working on almost every continent through militarism, regime change, corporate trade agreements, economic blockades and creating indebtedness. The destruction of Libya, in an illegal “humanitarian” war, and the destruction of Iraq, in a falsely justified war, where both leaders were brutally assassinated, highlight the necessity of being clearly anti-imperialist.

There are many countries suffering from US imperialism today. Here are just a few:

Syria: Every president since the 1940s has sought to dominate Syria and has had specific plans for regime change. The Syrian conflict, often misdescribed as a civil war, is a war of aggression by the US, Saudi Araba, and Israel. During the George W. Bush administration, documents show plans to undermine the Assad government through terrorism, chaos and other attacks. In 2006, the United States started to finance an external opposition to Assad. In 2007, a plan for regime change in Syria was agreed upon between the United States, Israel, and Saudi Arabia. The US began to use “color revolution” tools, organizing opposition in Syria, training citizen journalists and urging an “insurgency.”

During the Arab Spring-era in 2011, arrests of anti-Assad youth in Deraa resulted in protests. The police used water cannons and tear gas to disperse the crowd, but on the third-day protests turned violent, even though Assad announced the release of the detained youths. The police fought armed protesters, resulting in the deaths of seven police. Protesters torched the courthouse and Baath Party Headquarters. Violent protests continued and escalated and the Syrian government responded with violence.

Robert Ford, the first US ambassador to Syria in five years, marched with the regime change protesters. He traveled through Syria inciting rebellion against Assad, according to this interview with a former CIA agent. Ford had to flee the country out of fear.

The situation escalated into a seven-year war, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths, mass displacement, war crimes on all sides and unproven accusations against Syria of using chemical weapons. This week, seventy Syrian tribes declared war on the US at a time when Israel and the US are increasing their military campaigns in Syria.

The US has multiple imperialist interests in Syria. The US would like to close Russia’s Navy base in Tartus, Syria on the Mediterranean. A gas pipeline from Qatar to Turkey is competing with one from Iran to Syria. With large finds of methane gas in the coastal waters of Israel and Lebanon, it is likely they also exist in Syrian waters.

Iran: US imperialism in Syria is tied to Iran. As with Syria, domination has been the goal of the US since the 1950s when the CIA engineered a coup that put in place the Shah, a dictator who ruled until the 1979 Iranian Revolution. The US has long sought to control Iran‘s vast oil resources.

The US used the same tools of regime change as in Syria and other countries, e.g. massive funding to build opposition to the government, supporting, building and manipulating protests, economic sanctions, and threats of militarism. These strategies have caused disruption but have failed to undermine the government.

Sanctions and the US violation of the nuclear agreement may backfire against the US as countries are fighting back against them and the US is being isolated in the UN. The US also conducts a false propaganda campaign, with the media playing along, about a nuclear weapons program that never existed and makes false claims of Iran sponsoring terrorism. And, as it did in Iraq, Libya, and Syria, Israel is urging war on Iran. This may lead to the US creating a Syrian-like war in Iran, threatening world security.

Venezuela: Another country with vast oil resources, Venezuela has been threatened with regime change, coups and war due to US imperialism that is supported by the elites in the US. The US uses the same regime change tools, e.g. a propagandistic barrage of lies about a “dictatorship”, economic sanctions, high-levels of funding to build opposition, violent protests, terrorism and attempts to foment a civil war.

Venezuela has faced a continuous coup since the election of Hugo Chavez. In 2002, a coup against Chavez was reversed by people’s protests. There has been an economic war since then. Wikileaks’ documents show Hillary Clinton sought to undermine and replace the Chavez-Maduro government. A coup in 2016 was foiled. In 2017, there was an embarrassing failed coup supported by the US. Trump is continuing long-term US policies seeking to dominate Venezuela.

The economic war creates challenges for the Venezuelan government. The US economic war blocks food, medicine, and essentials, while traitors inside Venezuela, from the wealthy class, do the same. These internal traitors even call for sanctions and war. The US falsely claims a humanitarian crisis exists in order to justify intervention to steal the nation’s oil and natural resources.

Sadly, this fools too many people who are not clear on opposing US imperialism, while it also unites many in Venezuela against US imperialism. The US-allied internal traitors admitted to 17 years of crimes in a proposed amnesty law in 2016, when they controlled the National Assembly.

In Latin America, particularly in Venezuela, Colombia plays the role of Israel for the US as the point of the US spear threatening war. Colombia has long-worked with the CIA for regime change in Venezuela. Indeed, Colombia just brought the imperialism military tool, NATO, to Latin America. The US and its allies are looking toward war,  making war preparations, conducting military exercises and are calling for a military coup. The world is saying ‘no’ to war against Venezuela as is much of Latin America.

In Venezuela, democratic elections resulted in a landslide victory for President Maduro, which was really a defeat of US imperialism. The election was important as the US, Canada, and the European Union were threatening Venezuela. It was a decisive election for the Bolivarian Revolution, which will continue for now.

And, There Are More: These are three examples of many. In Latin America through non-governmental organizations and US agencies, the US funds oligarchy, opposition to democracy and support for neoliberal policies and has a long history of US coups. In Nicaragua, the same tools of regime change are being used. There has been a US-supported soft coup in Brazil and Honduras.

Coups and militarism are not limited to Latin America. During the Obama era, US coups in Ukraine and attempts in the Middle East occurred. Ukraine deserves special mention as this country, which borders Russia, was a long-term imperial aim of the United States. State Department official Victoria Nuland said the US spent $5 billion to build an opposition to the government and manage a coup. There are now proposals to arm Ukraine against Russia, so the danger is growing.

The dramatic protest against democratically-elected President Viktor Yanukovych in 2014 was a US coup spearheaded by violent neo-Nazis. This Obama-era coup was “the most blatant coup in history,” according to the corporate CIA-firm, Stratfor.  The US has taken over their gas industry, putting Joe Biden’s son and a longtime friend of John Kerry on their board, has taken over agriculture, has a former State Department official serving as finance minister, picked their Prime Minister and put in place the US’s “Our Ukraine Insider” president. In the US, media propaganda is constant, focusing on Crimea returning to Russia and demonizing Putin.

While there are more current examples of US imperialism, we will finish with a brief discussion of Africa, where the US seeks to dominate the land, resources, and labor of a continent which holds natural resources critical to 21st Century technology and oil and where $100 billion in US corporate theft occurs annually. Under Obama, AfriCom greatly expanded and the US now has bi-lateral military agreements across the continent, military bases, drone basesSpecial Operations Forces and a military presence in 53 of 54 countries creating an imperial-scale military presence.

The Congo, which has suffered 500 years of European and US imperialism and where four million people have been recently displaced, deserves special focus. The Congo has natural resources more valuable than the entire EU’s GDP. Tech companies violate human rights, such as children as young as seven mining cobalt for lithium batteries.  Africa is shaping up to be the center of 21st Century imperial US wars.

American Imperialism. From Countercurrents.org

 

Anti-Imperialism: The Foundation For A Just Foreign Policy

These conflicts are all rooted in resource sovereignty in Latin Ameria, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Do these countries control their natural wealth or will US imperialism steal it from them? Peace and justice movements must build on a foundation of anti-imperialism and not be fooled by the lies of elected officials, militarists, and the corporate media.

Some will attack those clearest on opposing imperialism. At the Left Forum, a small group criticized long-time US human rights and peace advocate, Ajamu Baraka, for his stance opposing US imperialism in Syria.  The previously unknown group, the “League for the Revolutionary Party”,  was made up of a small number of members of the International Socialist Organization and Democratic Socialists of America. They showed how those who do not make opposition to imperialism a foundation of their advocacy are easily confused.

They had to misquote Baraka and take his views out of context to justify their attack. By protesting Baraka, they attacked the leader of the Black Alliance for Peace, making their protest racist. They also protested someone who challenged the war party duopoly, as he was the vice presidential nominee of the Green Party. Their protest not only supported US militarism in Syria but sought to weaken the rebuilding of the black peace movement and challenges to the war parties.

If we ground ourselves in anti-imperialism, we will not be as easily misled. We must respect the sovereignty of other nations and support popular struggles without promoting US intervention.

The people of many countries unite in opposition to US imperialism, economic warfare and threats of militarism. It is our job in the United States to act in solidarity with them and say ‘no’ to US imperialism.

  • ari9999

    I get that you’re using the little-known “League for the Revolutionary Party” at a forum as a case example — a reason for us lefties to align on anti-imperialism. Fair enough.

    However, though you used “members of” wording, on a quick read it sounded like DSA itself took the LRP’s misguided stance or aligned with it. I find that very hard to believe.

    Could you clarify, please? Thanks!

  • kevinzeese

    We intended to say the opposite. This little group did not do this as ISO or DSA, but they were recognized members of ISO and DSA by various observers. If they did this on behalf of DSA they would have said so as DSA is a real organization, this revolutionary league seems like a quickly made up group for some individuals to take this action with. It would be excellent if DSA and ISO said they did not support the protest against Baraka. I hope they distance themselves from it.

  • Alan MacDonald

    Kevin, an excellent article on “Imperialism” — which, of course, reinforces, highlights, comports exactly with, and complements any such efforts to ‘expose’ this damn cancerous tumor of the Disguised Global Capitalist Empire, which is nominally HQed in, and merely ‘poses’ as, our former country.

    BTW, the latest dictatorial deceit and enforcement by the disgusting and dirty DNC that Bernie can’t run in ’20 except as a true independent is actually a big beautiful ‘gift’ in disguise.

    As I have just written on many progressive sites:

    “This is actually fabulous news!!!

    Now that Bernie has been thrown out, by the effin DNC, of any useless possibility to run as a phony Democrat —- we have a true “Socialist Independent” (who, of course, would be crazy to run as anything but a GREEN — which BTW is theonly party to be explicitly, overtly, and boldly committed already as being Anti-EMPIRE) — and all of these amazingly fortuitous elements of luck are coming together just at the right time to kick the sheet out of EMPEROR TRUMP and his insane megalomaniac sociopathic stupidity of making our country “act like an EMPIRE” during his first and last effin term in the office of president!!!

    My only demonstration, march, and protest sign is coming true in spades — as it shouts-out on the front side simply:

    DUMP
    EMPEROR
    TRUMP

    and on the back-side under the image of ‘our’ American flag:

    “We can’t be an EMPIRE”

    Thank God!

    There is a God”

    And Kevin, I wanted to suggest to you again, as I did to Chris Hedges today regarding his excellent article in TD on “Scapegoating Iran” applies to all situation in which American Imperialism, Empire, and tyranny are involved that there are an increasing number of previously ‘asleep’ or worse MSM powerful megaphones which can now very effectively used/leveraged to get out Anti-Empire, Anti-Imperialist, and Anti-War messages to a wider audience than just readers of TD, CD, WSWS, et al as I tried to emphasize again there on TD:

    “Yes, Chris, as you say, “The endless wars in the Middle East are the biggest strategic blunder in American history and herald the death of the EMPIRE.”

    Ending EMPIRE is essential if we are to survive — so the end of this first and last in world history, ‘effectively-disguised’, ‘truly-global’, ‘dual-party Vichy’, and ‘capitalist-fueled’ EMPIRE is to be applauded, eh!

    As you well know, Chris, educating, enlightening, and encouraging people to non-violently take unified action in a “Revolution Against Empire” [Justin du Rivage] is the key to any winning “Competitive Strategy” (and matching ‘Strategic Narrative’).

    I’m having a pretty good batting average at your old alum NY ‘Times” on ‘exposing’, explaining, and excising EMPIRE:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/10/opinion/g7-trump-quebec-trudeau.html?comments#permid=27415101:27415863

    Good Luck as always, Kevin, and as Hannah Arendt says:

    “Empire abroad entails tyranny at home”!

  • kevinzeese

    Sanders is more likely to become a Democrat than to run as an independent or third party candidate. He will need to be pushed hard to run independent of the Dems. Hillary Clinton donated to him when he ran for the Senate the first time. He has put his name on Democratic Senate Campaign Company fundraisers. He has not been challenged in his runs for the Senate. He is the director of outreach for Senate Dems putting him in the leadership of the party in the Senate. He is basically a Democrat disguised as an independent. But, he should be pushed to run as an independent.

  • ignasi

    The imperialist business is to organize a dispute and act as a judge.

  • Jon

    Excellent! I just forwarded to our state Greens list.

  • Jon

    Does anyone else smell COINTELPRO, 2.0?

  • Jon

    Or Green!

  • louisproyect

    You don’t even expect your readers to check your sources. You write that on the 3rd day of protests in Dara’a, they became violent. But if you check the article you linked to, it clearly states that peaceful marchers had been previoiusly killed by Assad’s snipers. I understand that you people are totally Islamophobic but Syrian lives matter just as much as Palestinian’s. That is why Hamas supported the protests in Syria even though you would sweep that fact under the rug.

  • kevinzeese

    I was not going to respond to your comment but then I received private emails and felt I had to alert readers about your bias. One person wrote saying “Proyect has made a career of attacking genuine left anti-imperialists.” I guess we are in good company being criticized by you, as I was told “He has attacked just about everyone that I admire on the left precisely because they oppose US empire.”

    As to your allegation of being “totally Islamophobic”, a claim that made no sense to me. A private email said “As with the Islamophobic smear made against PR – totally without justification – he is vicious and unprincipled in his attacks.” We are not Islamophobic as a review of this website will show we oppose discrimination against Palestinians and support liberation of Muslim-dominant nations. The phobia, if you want to call it a phobia, is of US imperialism. The US has been working to control Syria for decades. It is important to US empire for various imperialistic and hegemonic reasons, as we describe in the article. US funded and supported change in the Syrian government will not be for the benefit of the Syrian people, but for the benefit of the United States and its corporations.

    Syrian lives do matter just as much as Palestinian lives (and many others), we agree on that. US war crimes in Syria, as described in detail by Amnesty International in a recent report, have resulted in tens of thousands of deaths and mass numbers of refugees. See https://popularresistance.org/us-committed-war-crimes-in-syria/

    I appreciate people who have followed your career writing me because it explains your comment, which made little sense to me. I hope other readers now know about your bias which attacks those who oppose US imperialism.

  • Alan MacDonald

    Where did my supporting comment to you go, Kevin?

  • kevinzeese

    When there is a link to another article it is delayed. It was just approved a few minutes ago.

  • Alan MacDonald

    Thanks Kevin.

  • Walter Teague

    Kevin, excellent an important article. I see it’s been quoted and circulated on other sites. One suggestion, there are many typos or editing errors. For example the sentence “Iran: US imperialism in Syria is tied to in Iran.” Which is not as clear as it should be.

    The reason I raised this is because bringing up and explaining to the general public, especially US citizens, the nature of and historical reasons for US imperialism is vital to the building of a progressive movement.

    We know how years of indoctrination have blocked average Americans from being able to even consider the painful realities of their own country. For example use the word Imperialism in a sentence and unless you’re talking about the British or maybe the French, their mind will suddenly go blank and they have difficulty hearing or remembering what was said. Your article needs to be just one of many that help overcome this indoctrinated automatic reactionary blindness.