Michael S. Rozeff
March 8, 2011
Obama is clearing the decks for military intervention in Libya. U.S. forces are being moved into the area. A few days ago, Obama told Gaddafi to step down. Now, in the same manner that Bush tried to make Saddam Hussein responsible for a U.S. attack, Obama has warned Gaddafi that his behavior is “unacceptable” and that he, Gaddafi, will be held responsible for continuing violence in the area. Obama, like Bush, has also said that all military options are on the table. Meanwhile, in both parties the proponents of U.S. empire and oil-hegemony (like McCain, Kerry, and Yoo) have ramped up their rhetoric calling for intervention. They began with calls for a no-fly zone and have upped their demands from there. All of this points in one direction: Obama will introduce U.S. military force in Libya. The shape of it (NATO, EU, UN, Arab nations) is being stamped out now.
He and other supporters of the Empire will cover their actions with the rhetoric of humanitarian concern for Libyan lives lost in the fighting against Gaddafi forces. This is a lie. This is strictly for the consumption of naive voters. Obama, as acting emperor-in-chief, is not about to abandon the empire to centrifugal and uncontrollable forces in North Africa and the Middle East. He is committed above all else to one thing: controlling the general politics of the region in a way that satisfies the U.S. hegemonists that they are in charge. If the U.S. cannot control Libya, what will happen when the lid blows off of Saudi Arabia, which it is about to do?
But this entire policy is highly dangerous and risky. Obama cannot calculate the consequences, nor can he foresee the volatile changes that are still transpiring in Bahrein, Oman, Egypt, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. The negatives of intervention are many and tangible. See here for greater detail. They usually lead to far greater loss of life than what might have occurred in the absence of such intervention. They usually lead to an extended presence of U.S. armed forces and very high costs. They perpetuate an empire that benefits only special interests. Nevertheless, the emperor-in-chief makes a different calculation, which is that under his watch he cannot go down in history as the leader who let the American empire unravel, which is exactly what’s going on in these distant lands. How can Gaddafi remain now that Obama unwisely committed himself to his removal? He made that statement under the presumption that the wishes of the emperor would predominate and should predominate. Now he has to live by that presumption and see it through or else he and the empire lose face, lose power, and lose control. Control in other lands is a literal quicksand, such that one step in leads to being drawn further and further into the pit. Tomorrow or next week or next month, more quicksands must be traversed in the other volatile states in this and adjacent regions. The consequences will be felt in central Asia too. The American empire stands at the edge of disintegration.
This article was posted: Tuesday, March 8, 2011 at 8:07 am