Bestia Devictus: The Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Eurasianism and the End of Liberalism
The social-nationalist movement is occasionally called “communist” or even “fascist” by clueless western journalists, who are worsted only by the useless field of “political theory” that has refused to even recognize its existence. In its Charter, the very diplomatically worded ideological component of Article II reads:
The member States of SCO shall adhere to the following principles: Mutual respect of sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity of States and inviolability of State borders, non-aggression, non-interference in internal affairs, non-use of force or threat of its use in international relations, seeking no unilateral military superiority in adjacent areas; equality of all member States, search of common positions on the basis of mutual understanding and respect for opinions of each of them (SCO, 2009)
While the language is almost comically formal, it is a strongly stated attack on liberalism and its capitalist empire. The official ideology of postmodern globalism does not recognize races, borders or ethnic tradition as socially significant object. It generally rejects the state except as an administrative body of coercion carrying out orders from elsewhere. Liberalism, like no other ideology, has sought to remake the globe using all forms of coercion including the use of debt, finance, military force, diplomatic pressure, mass media control, “spontaneous color revolutions,” strategic name calling, and even pornography to overwhelm, demoralize and reduce rebels to its state of mass abulia. Importantly, given the above, only liberal interests can ever be the end of coercion, and only such forces have the right to utilize it.
Terms such as “soft power” are misleading because it suggests that psychological pressure is more “humane” or acceptable than tanks. Nothing can be further from the truth: dictatorships of old used clumsy means of coercion to maintain their power. Liberalism alone in world history can dig into the very foundations of thought and language to alter the “default” cognition of the bovine mass. The USSR might put dissidents in prison and torment them physically. Only liberalism can alter the meaning of these words.
The SCO was founded on the strength of the Russo-Chinese alliance. Its other founding members are Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan while Iran, India, Mongolia, Afghanistan and Pakistan have observer status and await full membership. It is not going too far to state that it is the greatest threat in existence to the western, liberal drive to create the Atlantean, capitalist superstate.
In brief, the SCO institutionalizes Chinese and Russian power in order to protect themselves and their allies against economic instability, ethnic separatism, and terrorism. It is not shy about pronouncing the end of US hegemony and demanding local and regional control over its market and resources. The SCO is a threat to the liberal west, but the globe's financial elites have only their own arrogance to blame. This body is ethically sound and crucial to global reconstruction. It is, most of all, a model response to the commercial, cultural, economic and diplomatic hubris of finance capital.
General Points in the Critique of Postmodern Imperialism
For liberal empire, A. Iriye (2005) stresses the concept of modernization as the most important justification for colonialism and imperialism. His argument is that colonial governments before the 20th century modernized their colonial subjects. They built roads, reinforced bridges, introduced rational accounting methods, advertising and wage labor. These are presented by the colonizer as “progress,” as well as inevitable. Like modernity everywhere, it remakes the very concept of the target population, changing its scale of values, language and reference points to more easily absorb them into the hegemonic orbit. Without a cultural foundation, rebellion is impossible. No one can be a revolutionary using the frames of reference of their tormentor (Iriye, 2005).
Complicating matters was the replacement of cultural elites with western-educated “new men” that both love and hate the modern drive to quantification. In places like Ukraine, native oligarchs quickly moved into the imperialist orbit as the best bet against Russia. However, it might be this very internal conflict that kept them from creating viable states. There were some exceptions, but most of the post-colonial societies were fragmented, confused, ideologically adrift, and conceptually paralyzed between native languages and the language of “progress.”
As these states began to fail, they were forced to approach western capital for assistance, creating an entirely new form of imperialism this paper is loosely calling “post-modern liberal modernity.” For states like Belarus, this fragmentation was prevented by maintaining some of the administration of the Soviet era, and keeping a strong, social-nationalist executive that avoided the destruction of “privatization.”
The problem of globalization and its direct connection to imperialism is that the market has no identity. It sees the world in quantitative terms. It is Darwinian in that the destruction of a civilization, another firm or a government is an expression of “natural selection.” The superior destroy the inferior. It is no accident that Darwin wrote in the midst of British industrialism and her colonial empire. It was progress that justified colonialism. If “progress” be vaguely defined as moving towards a market-based, secularized, tech-savvy, liberal society, then societies that are agrarian, traditional and religious are, therefore, “backward.” If they are backward, then it is up to the advanced, well adapted aspects of the human race to show them the light (Harvey, 2007).
Dependency is another essential idea. Patnaik (1996) states that this postmodern liberal empire is based on a complex web of dependency that has as its most visible form the constant need for credit. Far from the simplified model of states seeking their own “security,” this new dependency is based on a network of banks, media elites and governments. Private and public are now useless words that hide reality rather than reveal it. States are too unwieldy and cumbersome for for postmodern empires. Only the high-tech, global MNCs and esoteric layers of digital and symbolic interaction can dominate so completely and fundamentally. To retain the focus on states, generally speaking, is simply to fail to keep up with the new empire.
Few states are capable of having any substantial impact over global trade. The operative forces in international political economy are elite cliques, symbolic and arcane systems, fashionable and disposable ideology and the psychological expertise to keep this enchanted world from the bovine throng.
Dependency, this new phenomenon against which the SCO or BRICS have developed to combat, takes on more direct forms as foreign capital is concentrated and centralized. Major international conglomerates are so wealthy and well capitalized that even the best of local competitors have no chance. The shift of local populations to western products is not a voluntary one but is the result of local producers going out of business. Western products are bought, a new frame of reference, language and ideology is slowly poured over the divided and confused population.
The mentality of the SCO, BRICS or the “Silk Road” alternative recognizes the nature of this dependency and its consequences. The first steps towards correcting this is to notice that states with tight controls over economic life are less dependent on foreign sources of capital and, because of their relative freedom, develop in more rational ways. The problem with western intervention is that it separates the state from the economy, relativizes the nation and rejects the spiritual altogether. Politics and social life are now privatized, and imperialism rests on the rejection of an autonomous communal order. In a recent article for the Center for Research on Globalization, Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya points out:
Fearing the multi-polar Silk World Order, Washington is fast-tracking the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. The US Congress has even given US President Barack Obama and his administration authority to speed secretive negotiations for establishing the two trade blocs that seek to exclude Russia and China. To do this the US is also doing its best to divide Moscow and Beijing respectively from their neighbours in Europe and Asia by using the fighting in Ukraine and the tensions in the South China Sea as pretexts (Nazemroaya , 2015).
While the point here is very valid, it has no bearing on “public debate.” “Slow tracking” would do no good, since there can be no “public debate” on such nuanced and specialized topics easily butchered or ignored by sloganeering advertising executives. Negotiations on these treaties and agreements is far beyond the media image of “Barack Obama” and his administration. These are the domain of private actors of immense power unknown to the American public, journalists and most politicians. It can be forced through since there is no real way to develop a comprehensive opinion on the matter. This development in geopolitics requires years and years of focused research to understand.
The broader point, one essential to Eurasianism in general, is that liberal loyalty to representative institutions only makes sense if liberalism itself is served. That the clownish American politics has the ability, desire or time to slog though the tens of thousands of pages of text and analysis on these complex trade agreements makes a mockery of the “commercial republican” virtue so beloved of Nietzschian oligarchs.
In this same vein, Alexander Dugin (2012) argues that this process is primarily ideological and specifically post-modern:
Having triumphed, liberalism disappears and turns into a different entity – into post-liberalism. . . The status quo and this inertia do not presuppose any political theory whatsoever. A global world can only be ruled by the laws of economics and the universal morality of 'human rights.' All political decisions are replaced by technical ones. Machinery and technology substitute for all else (Dugin, 2012: 19-20).
Liberalism is not, in other words, a libertarian ideology. It is an authoritarian one. Hardly believing that life choices are basically equal, the only legitimate choices are those which promote liberalism itself. At the same time, liberalism is required for de-nationalization and corporate penetration into new markets.
Significantly, Dugin deconstructs the abstract “globalized” concept of ethics. The problem is that if local or national tradition be destroyed, what force will then give meaning? What new language will replace the old? If it is the global economic order that, through modernization, has broken down local custom, then it is these same institutions that will replace old meanings with new ones. The implications here are that the rule of Atlantean capital removes all focal points for mass resistance since the language that it must use does not exist. Liberalism's power is that it can get into the very mind of the person and alter fundamental meanings of words and symbols. Dugin's argument throughout his career is that liberalism, especially in economics, shifts power to the private sector, which need not follow constitutional procedure when dealing with workers, especially when they live abroad. Liberal globalization, in this context, creates an immense private sector that is almost absolute in its ability to change thought patterns. It rules far more effectively than states and is far more powerful than these lumbering giants.
On post-modern global “universalism,” Dugin writes,
These [liberal] values are local ones, emerging from the particular development of a single culture, and globalization is trying to impose them into all of humanity as something that is universal and taken for granted. This attempt implicitly argues that the values of all other peoples and cultures are imperfect, underdeveloped and should be subject to modernization and standardization in imitation of the western model (Dugin, 2012: 45).
False claims to universal and “scientific” status help justify finance capital's dominance. This is similar to the concept of “modernization” above. Historically, therefore, there are several conclusions that come from Dugin's view. First, that liberalism, the ideology of globalism, is really the result of English historical experience and the very world that produced Darwin's work. There is nothing universal about it, but in reducing all to quantity, concepts of “universal” or “local” are radically altered. Second, that what is hoisted on the colonized is not a culture, but a vapid materialism that rejects all spiritual goods as either irrational or, at best, matters of private preference. The postmodern empire is totally unique in history as being acultural. All that a culture is reaches its negation in liberal domination.
Theoretically devised as an individualist, libertarian concept of freedom, its implicit connection with capitalism, democracy and technology removes any libertarian content from itself. This is partially because it has no content that is not technical, and partially because the values of liberalism are very difficult to discern and are gradually brought to perfection as a society “develops.”
In its statement celebrating the 5th Anniversary of the SCO, the joint heads of state released this communique stating in part,
Diversity of civilization and model of development must be respected and upheld. Differences in cultural traditions, political and social systems, values and model of development formed in the course of history should not be taken as pretexts to interfere in other countries' internal affairs. Model of social development should not be “exported.” Differences in civilizations should be respected, and exchanges among civilizations should be conducted on an equal basis to draw on each other's strengths and enhance harmonious development (SCO, 2006).
Again, in fairly prosaic language, nation and civilization are put against the egocentric individualism of postmodern finance ideology. The vaguely “democratic” or “republican” state is the easiest for capital to penetrate. The more politicians are dependent on external sources of funding and attention, the easier they are to bring under control. For the SCO by contrast, numerous approaches to the state and social life are accepted.
One important area for the state that still remains is the control over currency. For example, after the Asian currency meltdown of 1997, the US Treasury Secretary, along with representatives from the IMF, were instrumental in redesigning the economic structures of those states affected such as Japan, South Korea and Thailand. The economic crisis in those states permitted the US a free hand in re-inventing these societies (Gandasegui, 2007). The extreme method of this imperialism is occasionally understated. The meltdown made it possible to re-create Asia in the western, finance-capitalist image.
Those economies that were not affected by the meltdown were precisely those in which the state controlled interest rates and investment, China, Burma and Taiwan. The “free market” usually means a highly administered, technocratic centralization of capital imposed on a society unprepared to resist it. The economic growth numbers for this ideology in the third world is awful. Those with a strong state sector, high levels of homogeneity, and a nationalist focus have done well. These are also the states that now make up the backbone of the SCO and related organizations.
The SCO, Terrorism and Liberal Rhetoric
As state-Marxism fled the Soviet Union, Central Asia became the next target of western exploitation. Central Asia remains significant due to its oil and natural gas reserves as well as its large population. Just as importantly, the pipelines from Russia and Iran cross the area, dumping out into China to the east and the Syrian port cities in the west. Whoever controls this region will become the globe’s energy broker. The artificially induced civil war in Syria has to do with eliminating Israel’s primary local enemy, armed by the Russians as well as taking the important, Russian outfitted port cities such as Lattakia.
These Syrian cities are some of the most significant elements in that economy and connect the Syrian economy to the Iranian, Indian and other states in Central Asia. Not only are these of immense strategic importance, but they are also ultra-modern due to Russian investment in its infrastructure. Israel began to fret about this in the early 1990s as Russo-Syrian scientific and industrial teams discovered more and more sources of petroleum in this country.
The state run Syrian oil firms operate three major transport hubs, two on the Mediterranean and one at Lattakia. When Syria began supplying oil and gas to Lebanon, hence solidifying her dominance over that strategic country, Israel responded with threats, and eventually, the creation of riots and “civic protests.” Since the Syrian transport hubs and oil firms were state owned, liberal academics in the US began speaking of “building of civil society” in Syria. This is code for “permit foreign investment or else.” As the industry of Syria grew, Bashar al-Assad went from “reformer” to “tyrant” almost overnight.
Syria and her important port cities became central for Chinese penetration into Central Asia. This is partially because Syria, Russia, Iran and Kazakhstan are essential allies of the new Chinese empire since the mid 1990s or so, seeing her as a means of helping create the multi-polar economy necessary to eliminate American hegemony. Iran, Armenia and Russia have been in the sights of the American foreign policy establishment since the end of the “Cold War.” Today, the Atlantic Regime sees its worst fears being realized: a manifest alliance of what Bush laughably called the “Axis of Evil,” which refers to those states who a) actually want to control their own economic destiny, b) are enemies of Israel and the US, and are c) non-liberal in their governments. Ultimately, the SCO is at the center of this Axis.
Since the creation of the SCO, Chinese firms have invested in Central Asia, including joint investments with Russia in the fields of energy and infrastructure. At the same time Kazakhstan, wary of Chinese penetration, seeks to use the organization to control Chinese expansion as Uzbekistan wants to check the Kazakhs (Prantl, 2013: 166). Each member has its own agenda, but the developing system of checks and balances shows its political trajectory. While it is true that the SCO has weak institutions, its functioning has been largely based on both formal and informal networks rather than organizational development. This, of course, has substantial implications for technology and international law (Prantl, 2013: 172).
The SCO has adopted a very high-tech database of possible terror and other security threats. Its defense initiatives stress information technology as a means of dealing with instability. Its networked structure lends itself perfectly to the telecommunication age and this approach makes organizational structure a lower priority. The SCO is taking the necessity of a less formal organization and turning it into the virtue of a networked organization without a clear center.
To a limited extent, the development of this sector in Russia and China might even the playing field between the third world and the west. The high-tech sector permits leaders to keep track of the rapidly moving world of currency speculation and money markets. It allows poorer states, especially when they pool resources, to monitor threats to its security that, in an earlier era, cost a fortune in military preparedness. Central Asia can now devote more resources to economic development now that Russia and China are their sponsors.
The self-interest of western communications companies lie at the pious condemnation of the SCO's desire to control aspects of telecommunications. Media and these forms of communication are far more effective weapons than tanks and gas. To seek some control or influence over it is hardly a radical idea. The internet as a source of news and social media are not independence, since they too are highly centralized by the major media firms. Most media accessed online is CNN, Newsweek, the New York Times and the rest.
China and the USA are engaging in a massive war of computer hacking that is unprecedented. This is especially the case given China's regular accusations that the US uses hackers (such as in the famous Snowden case) to destabilize its state controlled telecommunications system (Eriksson and Giacomello, 226ff). The US has passed similar laws such as the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 which is specifically aimed at both Russia and China (Kain, 2012). The SCO has an obligation to place limits on elite media, whose irresponsibility, misrepresentation and self-interest has all but destroyed political discussion in the west.
Since GATT (ie the World Trade Organization) emphasizes that developing economies can take measures to protect its fledgling industries, there is no reason why this cannot also be applied to internet security issues of all kinds, especially given western dominance in this area as well (see below and GATT, sec XVIII, entire).
Fledgling industries might also be local media. This could be state owned, since, contrary to myth, there are plenty of examples of state-owned media companies quite critical of their home government. State ownership is at least equally as legitimate as corporate ownership, so the west's elites are not occupying the moral high ground. In fact, there are plenty of reasons to see state-owned media as superior to corporate centralization (Cheah, 2007).
Since the SCO is dedicated to non-interference in national affairs, this also provides a legal foundation for controlling the west's access to Asian airwaves. There is no “human right” protecting rapacious broadcasts or “social media” manipulation. Governments, especially poor ones, are concerned with western penetration into their economy and culture.
Eriksson and Giacomello (2006) argue that centralized corporate media is certainly amendable to state or local control. It is not a “free” media and has no particular moral superiority to anything else:
Cyber-threats and other challenges of the information revolution are clear and present elements of the more general trend of globalization, which arguably weakens the sovereignty and security of the state. Non-state actors are becoming even more numerous and powerful because of the information revolution. The emergence of the Internet not only made real-time global communications possible for existing NGOs, but also for new, exclusively online groups. This can obviously have both positive as well as negative effects: integration, cooperation, and liberation may be eased, but also terrorism, transnational crime, and the destabilization of states (Eriksson and Giacomello, 2006: 232).
This cuts both ways. The list of groups with access to the latest in information warfare technology are immensely wealthy and powerful. Their control over technology gives them a weapon of outstanding effectiveness. This cannot be reduced to mere “freedom of speech” or other banalities; technology is a weapon.
The “NGO,” at least those that matter, are spokesmen for their elite founders. Every major western group has a long list of corporate sponsors. Without deviation, these NGOs all attack the SCO in the predictable way, actually reading more like a script than serious political analysis. One area of criticism has been that the SCO is designed to insulate member governments from criticism and intervention on questions of “human rights.” This common argument assumes that what these abstract, ethereal “rights” are is settled and uncontroversial. Further, they are not necessarily applicable (in their fullness) to poor states struggling with terrorism and violence as in Central Asia.
Certainly, developing states require strong governments to focus investment and maintain order in a financial fishbowl controlled by others. Seeking stability through strong, representative (though not necessarily liberal) states is far from immoral. The endless American depression and the well known Spanish and Greek debt crises – not to mention the constant “boom and bust” cycles of western finance – force these governments to insulate themselves from the errors of their soi distant teachers. Calling this phenomenon “authoritarian” and “totalitarian” is to obscure the issue (besides being insufferably hackneyed). According to this line of argument, only western liberalism is legitimate and representative, which might be a surprise to any blue collar worker living in the west. As a result, an unstated assumption is often that only liberal states haves the right to use force to impose itself on the world in the name of not using force (cf. HRC, 2011 and Nurgaliev, 2009 for examples of this sort of argument).
The Council on Foreign Relations is comically dramatic in its elitist disapprobation. It underscores some of the assumptions that liberal critics of the SCO make – often without being fully aware of them. They write:
U.S. interests in Central Asia include energy and the effort to support liberalizing and democratizing reforms. The increased prominence of the SCO has led policymakers and scholars to question if the organization might complicate the United States' ability to secure those interests. Some experts believe that Russia and China want to use the SCO to curb U.S. access to the region's vast energy supplies. Similarly, the SCO's call for the United States to withdraw military forces from the region was seen as an explicit challenge to the U.S. military presence in Central Asia (Scheineson, 2009).
Energy and “democratic reforms,” are mentioned as if they are the same. This article assumes far too much. Just a few unwarranted suppositions are: 1) that the “US” has interests in Central Asia; 2) that these interests provide the unilateral right to intervene when they are threatened; and 3) that the US or its allies – to the exclusion of all else – has a right to a military presence in Central Asia. In the same article, an organization of first rank powers seeking an autonomous existence is equated with being “OPEC with bombs” (Scheineson 2009). Such rhetoric is puerile and inflammatory, and speaks poorly of American capital as represented by the CFR (not to mention being anything but representative). Such rhetoric is noted by the SCO and thus continues the estrangement between the declining US and a rising Asia.
Matthew Oresman, writing for Foreign Policy, argues that China might be “using the SCO to pursue its larger regional and global goals” (Oresman, 2008: 79). This is uttered as a condemnation. Assumed here is the idea that only global capitalism has actual interests. China does not, since her government is illiberal and hence, illegitimate. As a major power, however, China has legitimate interests in Central Asia as the US does in Mexico. For the Chinese to demand an accounting of NAFTA would be met with laughter in Washington, yet, this is precisely what these criticisms amount to (also see McCain and HRIC for examples of this demand).
The “Human Rights in China” organization, largely funded by the Carnegie Institute and the Council on Foreign Relations, argue in their summary of the SCO that its basic doctrine:
is highly problematic in light of the Chinese government’s record of characterizing the legitimate exercise of religious, ethnic, cultural, and other rights as separatism or extremism, particularly in the Tibet Autonomous Region and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR). . . (HRC, 2011: ii)
Firstly, these rights are assumed to be legitimate without argument. Second, that these are “rights” with the same certainty as the freedom of the press. HRIC adds to this polemic that the SCO has “an over-broad definition of “terrorism” that relies heavily on ideology” and the existence of “intelligence practices that compromise international due process and nondiscrimination guarantees and the right to privacy, including cooperative surveillance, a shared database, and blacklists, all of which are coordinated through the SCO’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) and lack transparency, meaningful safeguards, and accountability mechanisms.” Further, according to HRC, the worst sin of all is “military and law enforcement cooperation, including a trend of expanding militarization of the region, that is designed to send a chilling message to targeted groups. . . and reinforce domestic control through the threat of force” (HRC, 2008: ii-iii).
This sort of irresponsible, unprofessional and jejune writing creates the ideological groundwork for war. Its also an excellent argument for control over elite media. Apart from calling the kettle black, this conjures images of the SCO creating concentration camps and death squads. In reality, these are merely hypothetical scenarios written to appear as if they have actually occurred. Apart from all that, they are simply incorrect.
First, there is no accepted definition of terrorism anywhere; each country and international organization has its own, often mutually exclusive construct. Second, the problem with the “use of force” underscores the assumption that only liberalism has the right to use force on others. Third, anti-terror intelligence, by definition, cannot be transparent. The CIA does not turn its data over to an international organization for scrutiny. They do not even turn over information to Americans for scrutiny. Finally, regional separatism has never been tolerated by liberal governments anywhere. From the Confederacy to Northern Ireland, such movements are met with violence and repression.
International law backs the SCO here, as its purpose is the creation of peace in a turbulent area. It seeks local autonomy and development, as well as the ability of the third world in general to develop strong markets and prices for their goods (see below). In addition, the SCO is in the process of creating a market for locally produced goods; it is a market that the Central Asian states cannot create for themselves.
The behavior of western states relative to the SCO, Asia and the Middle East has been duplicitous and arrogant. The western claim over Central Asia is just one example, but an immensely strategic one. Recent leaked documents speak volumes about the creation of an Islamic Central Asia by the CIA. Former FBI translator Sybil Edmunds has valuable information in this regard. She reports the Turkish as well as Pakistani press reported on CIA activities in Turkey:
Last year, during an immigration court case involving Turkish Islamic Leader, Fetullah Gulen, US prosecutors exposed an illegal, covert, CIA operation involving the intentional Islamization of Central Asia. This operation has been ongoing since the fall of the Soviet Union in an ongoing Cold War to control the vast energy resources of the region – Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan – estimated to be worth $3 trillion (Edmunds, 2009).
Recent Russian intelligence documents also say the same. This might come as a bit of a shock to Americans, many of whom think that the US is involved in “fighting Islamic terror.” Just as the “Cold War” was not about fighting Marxism (that the capitalist elite did business with with vigorously), but Russian nationalism, so too, the war on terror is only incidentally related to Islam. The deliberate creation of an Islamic Central Asia would rule this interpretation out, but this fact seems to buttress the case the SCO is presently making. In fact, a Pakistani newspaper said this recently about the situation:
[Former] FSB head Nikolay Patrushev has mentioned the names of these companies and foundations, saying, ‘The brotherhood engages in anti-Russian activities via two companies, Serhad and Eflak, as well as foundations such as Toros, Tolerans and Ufuk.’ Patrushev has accused the brotherhood of conducting pan-Turkish propaganda, of trying to convert Russian youths to Islam by sowing the seeds of enmity, and of engaging in certain lobbying activities. These companies and foundations have turned up in the internet site of Fethullah Gulen, alleged leader of the Nurcu religious community currently living in the United States who is a defendant in several court cases in Turkey, accused of engaging in anti-secularist activities. It is reasonable to suppose that this money is being aimed at China as much as Russia (Edmunds, 2009).
Capitalism has neither an ideology nor a religion. It seems that by stirring up “anti-Islamic rhetoric” among benighted American patriots, corporate American can more easily cover over their own Islamic agenda. Both the Chinese and the Russians are active in the region, but Russia has the upper hand due to the fact that the Central Asian states were at one time a part of the Soviet Union. The Chinese government seeks influence, if not control, in this region to battle the “three evils” of international politics: fundamentalism, separatism and terror. Given the large Islamic populations of these areas, such fears are not entirely unjustified.
Given the history, and the distrust of the West, the US realized that it couldn’t get direct control, and therefore would need to use a proxy to gain control quickly and effectively. Turkey was the perfect proxy; a NATO ally and a puppet regime. Turkey shares the same heritage/race as the entire population of Central Asia, the same language (Turkic), the same religion (Sunni Islam), and of course, the strategic location and proximity (Nimmo, 2014).
Recently, Turkey showed itself to be NATOs weak link. Turkey has all but removed itself from NATO when it began building a missile system with China. The former Turkish Prime Minister (now President) Tayyip Erdogan went to Russia for protection against the US when the deal goes through. The CIA tried to foment a coup in Ankara in 2011 when this issue was first broached, leading to the Prime Minister sending a bunch of officers to prison. This issue has become important again in 2015 (AFP, 2015).
Here's the clincher: Turkey has asked to join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Right afterward, the “spontaneous protests” began in Turkey. The MIT (Turkish intelligence) has already fingered several US operatives with the “protesters.” This means that Erdogan has all but left the western orbit. No Turkey -- no US in the Middle East.
The Turkish military is only slightly smaller than the American. It is easily a match for the overstretched American forces which are totally untested against NATO regulars. Turkey has access to all NATO secrets. War might be the only option left for the bankrupt US and John McCain has been yelling about this since 2011. This possible war (hot or cold) is on the SCO clearly, and is a war the US has no chance of winning.
Central Asia as the Graveyard of Liberalism?
In July of 2015, the Center for Research on Globalization made it clear that the US was waging economic war on the SCO by any means necessary. Speculation, the nature of the western “economy” in 2015, was betting against Chinese stocks in such a way that the panic led to substantial sell-offs. The purpose was to destroy investor confidence.
Finance capital is in no position to do much else. Without manipulating governments, capital must rely on far more significant forms of manipulation. The US is out of money. The US taxpayer, forced to bail out the bankers who are taking their homes, has no will or understanding. The US is overstretched with a total lack of commitment for these almost totally unknown wars at home. On the other hand, Russia has sold the sophisticated S-300 missile systems to Iran and the upgraded 400 to China. These anti-missile systems are far superior to what the west is presently fielding.
General Joseph Dunford, chosen to be the next US Chairman of the JCS, declared Russia to be the main threat to the USA. The US and NATO has increased troop levels surrounding Russia, increased heavy guns in the area and , most ominous of all, attempts to alter the conditions under which NATO can use nuclear weapons. Worse, the west is arming the rag-tag Ukrainian army, hiring mercenaries and taking over Kiev's military policy. Since Kiev has no money or any command over its small army, Ukraine is now even more a protectorate of the US and is tantamount to a declaration of war against Russia (Williamson, 2015). Therefore, the SCO is more needed than ever to ensure that the oligarchy does not believe they have a remote chance of winning any sort of confrontation with the stronger, wealthier and more unified eastern states.
Contributor to the journal Global Research, Andrew G. Marshall, argues that the Anglo-American obsession with destabilizing the Middle East and Central Asia is the last-ditch attempt to save the eternally bankrupt West. He writes,
One of the main targets in this project is Iran, for which the US and Britain have engaged in massive acts of terror and orchestrating large battles and conflicts from within the already-failed state of Iraq. The Anglo-American role as terrorist supporters and as covertly orchestrating terror attacks within Iraq is amply documented. To imagine that these same Anglo-American intelligence and covert networks are not using their long-time conduit, the ISI, for the same purposes in Central Asia, is a stretch of the imagination and logic. It is not merely the Middle East that is the target, but Central Asia, specifically for its geographical relationship to the rising giants such as India and China. This also follows in line with Anglo-American strategies in destabilizing the Central European region, specifically the former Yugoslavia, and more recently, Georgia, largely in an effort to target Russia (Marshall, 2008).
The weapon of choice for an empire that can no longer afford multi-front wars is the “color revolution” backed by CIA and more importantly, the NGOs. Again, making hard and fast distinctions here leads to error. Given the consuming financial constraints of the US government, some of this work has been outsourced to Soros and company. It might be that liberalism has now succeeded in completely obliterating the line between public and private, or that the “state” is just another corporate investment.
One important weapon in the fight against these imperial maneuvers is cash. In an official communication from 2011, the SCO states:
In practice, Russia and China have been going over to settlements in national currencies for two or three years already. . . the fact that the Russian and Chinese Central Banks have signed an agreement on mutual pure swaps means that Russian and Chinese businessmen. . . do not need to convert the renminbi in dollars and dollars in rubles, or vice versa, which was the case earlier (SCO, 2011).
This is a substantial part of the real threat. “de-dollarization” means that western capital and the US will not have the resources or the rationale to intervene anywhere. Western banks will no longer have power over global investment decisions and, possibly, the WTO, IMF and any number of other international groups will lose their grip on the area. The elimination of the dollar, especially in energy, spells doom for western dreams of the Pax-Sorosia. The world seems headed towards multipolarity in politics, but significantly, also in markets, financial arrangements and development methods.
In a speech by SCO Secretary-General Bolat K. Nurgaliev at the SCOs Business Council and Interbank Consortium, he states:
. . . .one thing is evident that in conditions of the slowing pace of economic growth the economic model pursued by China is bringing about results that are envied by many countries. When they say that the global economic order established in the past must undergo transformation by giving developing countries broader representativeness in a decision making process, they mean, first and foremost, the significant strengthening of China’s role (Nurgaliev, 2009).
Like many of the documents the SCO issues, it communicates the need for the restructuring of the global market, giving greater clout to less powerful economies. Similarly, in the Astana Declaration of the SCO, President N. Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan said:
The SCO member states believe that the implementation of joint measures on overcoming the effects of the global financial economic crisis and ensuring a steady balanced growth of the national economies must remain a top issue on the Organization’s agenda. The SCO member states stand up for further reforming the international financial regulation, strengthening the coordination of policies and cooperation in the field of financial regulation and control. The dialogue on the issues of effective protection of the stability of the member states’ financial systems will continue (Nazarbayev, 2011).
These essential policy speeches clearly show an organization that seeks a restructuring of financial power relations. As the west continues its decline under debt and confusion, the east, led by China and Russia, are demanding a share in global power in line with their economic development. China is the world's second largest economy, while Russia is eighth; to hold that they possess no legitimate interests in the regions adjacent to them is preposterous.
The SCO, Greek Euro-Serfdom, and the Fall of Liberalism
There are three specific policies that led to the current Greek crisis. First, the foreign-dominated plan to hide debt so as to make the country look better to Brussels. This was largely the work of Goldman-Sachs. Second, as Greece entered the Eurozone, the credit offered by French and German bankers was eagerly bought up by the oligarchy. Once rates inevitably fell, the oligarchy was quickly able to sell this paper to governments. The point is that Goldman's manipulation provided Greece with a higher credit score than was actually the case. This meant better rates and less perceived risk. Being unsustainable, this was a cynical short term ploy that is unfortunately typical of the present era (Lendman, 2015a).
The Greek crisis demonstrates the need for the SCO and the disaster of continually relying on a bankrupt west. This author made these arguments 10 years ago to the jeers of left and right alike. Today, its a mainstream opinion. Greece is presently being parceled out and sold, with Warren Buffet having recently bought the island of Agios Tomas for 15 million Euro. The same has long occurred in Ukraine, where major oil firms from the US are buying parts of the country and removing it from Kiev's jurisdiction. Greece needs to leave the EU now before there are no independent parts of Greece left (Krause, 2015). The implications for the cancellation of political sovereignty are staggering and yet again, western journalists remain befuddled, using stupid labels like “liberal” and “conservative” to describe the political institutions of the postmodern Regime.
Once it became clear that Greeks refused extreme austerity and possibly wanted out of the bankrupt EU, the typical clandestine work began. Greece of course, has received nothing of substance form the European Union. As the Regime went into a moderate damage control after the meaningless referendum, suddenly, the prime minister was quite interested in imposing austerity without clear reason. The exoteric reason for his sudden conversion is that the European Central Bank (ECB) merely cut off all sources of funds and rollover plans until Tspiras gave in. The ECB did not increase the loan limit as they had promised and refused to permit Greek banks from buying government paper. Finally, about 7.2 billion Euros of development assistance has been held up by the ECB until the prime minster gave in. It is not incorrect to say that independent Greece no longer exists. She has formal vassal status under the real powers in global politics, the banks.
In a chilling passage from Barry Finger, the Regime's new “finance-politics” is described:
There is no mechanism for them to write off excess debt. And, lacking a proper sovereign bank to underwrite fiscal decisions in accordance with the popular will, nations are captive to private market forces. So the bloodletting continues: austerity in exchange for loans. A housebroken Greece is to be granted future loan rollovers, arranged through the Troika, to pay off and service existing loans ad infinitum – a permanent Ponzi scheme, with no identifiable end game. And the only collateral that Greece can provide against these loans is its public assets, its cultural resources, and its tax base, all of which are rapidly shrinking in value due in no small part to the imposition of the “bailout” system itself (Finger, 2015)
This means that loans are used to pay back other loans, while in the meantime, taxpayers are fleeced and the country is sold off. Many of the new loans are profits from Greece. It is unsustainable, and suggests that bankers are taking what they can get and leaving town. Finger's idea is confirmed by Eric Zuesse, who writes that, starting in 2010, as private sector investors left Greek bonds, their debt was taken over by governments and their own private bankers who then bailed out the investors now exiting the country's loan market. Governments then will take the cash from taxpayers. All goes to the banking elites while all populations involved get poorer.
The Greek debacle has the one benefit of showing the Regime in full force. Given the minimum of 4 billion Euro profit western banks have made off of Greece in the last several years, the weak position of the Greek state permits its further dismantling and genocidal thrust into 3rd world status. In this passage Steven Lendman writes on new mechanisms the Regime will use to transfer Greek assets to western capitalism:
New provisions agreed on include Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD) measures for dealing with financial crises, making judicial proceedings more corporate friendly (speeding up settlements and reducing business costs in disputes) with greatly reduced budgets, simplifying home and business foreclosures for greater bank profits (beginning in January), and accepting Troika control of Greek affairs henceforth – a humiliating sovereignty destroying climbdown to official vassal state status (Lendman, 2015a).
As most of the plant is heading for bankruptcy, the “new order” seems to be that of the SCO and allies, and a consortium of mega-banks who control entities like “Greece” or “Peru.” These have no relation to the nations of that name, largely now fictional. The “state” is just a debt collection agency run by politicians who are blamed whenever the banks bring a nation to ruin.
The Greek crisis shows numerous things about liberal dominance. First, that the western media have no vocabulary or understanding of any complex doctrine. All will be simplified, camps drawn up a priori and one-liners penned. Second, that no one has faith in liberalism, capitalism or “the west” in the least. Third, that Eurasia is in an excellent position to fill in where the exploitative and violent liberal hegemony has long failed.
Greece renounced the spiteful “sanctions” on Russia. This is in part because the Eurasian powers are offering financing, diplomatic support and debt restructuring and even renunciation that the west cannot effectually answer. The European Union has not “failed,” but statist, hybrid, liberalism has. The hedonistic, corporate materialism has wound up where the 19th century conservatives said it would: in debt, death and alienation. The west cannot rebuild because there is no grounds for it. There is no foundation, no understanding and not even the vocabulary needed to rebuild. It must come from without.
The economic problems of the US and EU are largely terminal. To reform and rebuild, there must be a common vision, the resources available, the necessary focus and the political will. None of these exist. The US does not have “allies” but vassal states. Rather than see the arrogance and stupidity that has long destroyed any positive content for the American federation, more institutions and wealthy elites are brought into the orbit of the regime and used for ideological cover, media control and NGO activism.
Problems of integration between members of the SCO are minor compared with the EU and the terminally ill US. Unlike the American empire, Russia is seeking actual common ground rather than the mere imposition of ideology and foreign capital. The rule of banks will consist in a vocabulary that still hearkens back to “politics” without any of the reality. “States will exist as semi-fictional entities having no authority in social life, but will be sued to extract money from the population and serve as scapegoat for the elite's failures.
The SCO seeks integration of its sphere of influence that is local and will use resources (of all types, not merely physical) from the normal deposits of the region. No ideology will be imposed. The postmodern-finance-politic will demand ideological, educational and governing “reform” designed to eliminate the expression of any ideas not amenable to quantification and that will not assist in the transfer of wealth from the nation to the Regime.
The US does not merely impose liberal capitalism, but imposes feminism, easy divorce, free abortion, homosexuality and pornography as a matter of course. This is an intrinsic aspect of the American postmodern empire since capitalism requires the mobilization of the most base appetites for the quick sell and manipulation of passions (rather than the more difficult appeal to reason). Any hint that states will act to protect cultures will lead to harsh recriminations from the local media, usually long since bought up by foreigners.
In Greece, the west has demanded the imposition of homosexual rights laws on the country, the elimination of nay religious tradition on the state and the rejection of even the slightest barrier for third world immigration. Finance capital has even forced the country to have all its retail stores open on Sundays. State assets are forced into liquidation and all available liquidity goes into the hands of foreign bankers for “debt repayment.” Her creditors are now reorganizing the judiciary, and are canceling Greek independence. In other words, the troika is now overseeing all legislation and budgetary processes at the federal level and has veto power over it (Lendman, 2015).
The Greek Orthodox church, largely a secular, liberal institution, has collaborated with the agents of its own destruction in a familiar stage setting. Statements like Orthodoxy is part of the “Great European Family” is a mockery of the Byzantine tradition and a complete capitulation to secularism and ecumenism. The Orthodox church has performed admirably in operating all manner of social relief services to compensate for the forcible shifting of cash to foreign bankers, nevertheless, they support the very same oligarchy that makes such activities possible. Condemning “right wing xenophobia” the church, or the bureaucratic elements of it, have long rejected the Greek nation, its culture and any theological relevance to society at all. The Common European Family – a phrase with absolutely no meaning or parameters – will long swallow up any pitiful protests against the rape of the country by usurers.
The Ufa Summit
These issues were raised at the SCO-BRICS summit in Ufa, July 10 2015. Greek debt, Putin made clear, was the fault of predatory capitalism and the European Union itself. While realizing that an exit from the Euro was unlikely, it was also clearly stated that the financing terms from the SCO would be far superior to that of the west. Furthermore, that SCO or BRICS financing is not dedicated to short term profit, but long term stability.
China too was on the agenda, with a clearly contrasting response to the recent stock market failure versus western responses to such crises. In China, the state bank is actually a bank owned by the state. It quickly moved in to stabilize the situation without tearing the companies apart, selling off assets or destroying whole sectors (Beam, 2015). Expensive certainly, but only in the short term. The foundation of all these issues is the undeniable fact that the west is in rapid, terminal decline. This is long past the debating stage, and the only real issues now concern how it will be survived. Given this, Chinese capital, still focused around exports to the west, are in the process of adjusting to a world where American debt makes any western recovery impossible. Any economy, in other words, that is dependent on the American market is in trouble.
Putin's phone call to Greece's prime minister was a simple, yet unmistakable. On July 7, Putin also spoke with the head of the IMF, C. Lagarde. The point was not to broker any deals or even say much of substance. It is a reminder that, if the west pushes too hard, the east will help pick up the pieces. pick up the pieces. The Chinese dominance in gold holdings means that she possesses a hedge that makes any short-term instability easily to correct. Making matters worse for the west, the Ufa meeting of the SCO-BRICS made it clear that Iran is a de facto member of the alliance and thus off limits to any western military action.
The Ufa summit, as Alexander Mercouris intelligently surmised, is the beginning of the end for liberalism. He writes, “What we are seeing in Ufa is the coalescing of the new power centre that is challenging the historic hegemony of the US and the European states” (Mercouris, 2015). The issue is that the Silk Road, Eurasia, and states that the west have alienated have finally found an alternative power center. As Russia is the only member of all represented organizations (SCO, BRICS and the Eurasian Union), she is now the linchpin of the counter-revolution.
The acceptance of India, Pakistan and Iran is a clear signal to the west that their policies are not globally accepted, ethically sound or motivated by anything other than the self interest of its elites. If thew SCO can smooth over relations between Pakistan and India, then its presence as the single greatest threat to liberalism in the world is firmly proven. The very fact that Turkey sits on the fringes of this alliance must cause an icy chill to trace along the spines of western military elites. If Turkey becomes a full member, then it is the end of NATO, since Turkey will then hand over NATO's secrets to the SCO in order to cooperate in its security system.
The SCO is one of the most important developments in world politics since the fall of the USSR. Its mission is clear, as well as the west's utter contempt for it. This is to be expected. Presently, western capital is in serious trouble and often requires the state to bail them out when things get difficult. Of course, this requires the population to say nothing.
Michael Chossudovsky (2010) writes about the global recession and total dominance of a unified, tiny oligarchy with absolute control over all local politics (as the Greek case proves). His analysis is that the older models of economics have only a tangential relationship to the reality. The old market models of the neoconservatives have no relation to the parasitic and non-productive rule of usury. In fact, economics as a discipline is so useless that it does not even have a vocabulary to express the oligarchy and its tyranny over workers globally.
Most important, referring to the “state” or “government” as something distinct from profit-seeking firms is from mere inertia. role of the state is a manipulation of terms, since the distinction between private and public power does not exist. Organizations are used as mystifications; The IMF or “Europe” only refers to the handful of banks who control the economy and basic policy. The label is used to deceive and manipulate.
The “market” is another mystification, since the ruling financial oligarchy is far more powerful than any local market. It creates the conditions for any market to exist and hence, cannot be based on these market forces. It is parasitic and non-productive, since it manipulates value generated by labor in complex deals taking advantage of slight differentials between markets. Currencies can be bought and sold with great profit based on temporary shifts in value. Of course, all this value goes into the pockets of the banks and represents a totally useless waste of resources. The present level of exploitation is far beyond anything that Marx had considered and the system now has no difficulty with condemning entire populations to poverty.
The SCO unites Russia and China on more than negative grounds. They are strong land states with strong spiritual tradition. They are normally seen as separate from their neighbors and are loathe to follow precedent from foreigners. They seek to mix decentralized administration with authoritarian rule and charism and have a strong tendency to stress the communal. This is granted its political edge given the American insistence on political uniformity.
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