The military-industrial-humanitarian complex: Western hegemony spread by virtue signalling?
The terms ‘humanitarian’ and ‘democracy’ were once used to describe honourable behaviour and just causes, caring about less fortunate people rather than caring about being seen to care. Now they have become contenders, along with science, socialism and liberal for the dubious honour of being the most abused words in the English language, routinely deployed to justify politically motivated acts of aggression which lead to death and destruction.
The words‘humanitarian’ and ‘democracy’ have also acquired a darker and more cynical meaning following their misappropriation to justify the invasion of sovereign nations, effect regime change and promote the spread of Western military, economic and cultural dominance around the world. The mainstream media and many human rights activists, assist these ventures by broadcasting and publishing propagandised news and by tapping into negative emotions such as fear and outrage to soften public opinion and make interference in the political affairs of sovereign states appear justified.
If you remember 2001 and the lies of western politicians and media about Saddam Hussein’s Weapons of Mass Destruction, supposedly capable of being deployed against western targets within 45 minutes, the strategy was used to swing public opinion behind the US / EU / NATO push for a war that would rid them of a maverick leader. The public were deceived into accepting the invasion through attention-grabbing headlines crafted to abhor readers with ‘evidence’ of Saddam’s butchery and to generate strong emotional reactions which would cause people to think with their hearts rather than their heads.
One story was written by UK Labour MP Ann Clwyd, and published by the one time newspaper of record The Times two days before the US-led Coalition of the Willing began pounding Iraq’s cities and infrastructure with carpet bombing attacks. Clwyd claimed that Saddam had demonstrated a ‘human-shredding machine’ into which adversaries were fed and reduced to fish food. It is of course a variation on a scene in the Coen brothers film Fargo in which a wood shredder is used to render a corpse unidentifiable.
The article, under the title “See men shredded, then say you don’t back war” was quoted by other newspapers and by TV and radio news and caused readers to feel revulsion towards Saddam and his regime, and made the anti-war lobby appear sympathetic to a murderous regime dubbed by one tabloid, “The Butchers Of Bagdhad,” and indifferent to the plight of the Iraqi people. The story was challenged by anti — war campaigners and no evidence of such a device has been found. And for the record Saddam was supported by more than half of Iraquis, a popularity he achieved by the simple expedient of using a significant proportion of his country’s oil revenues to provide generous welfare payments.
The Iraqi dictator was certainly no angel, but he did manage to keep down the extremist elements in his country ,and of course, his removal by the the western military powers, USA , UK and France (The FUKUS axis,) facilitated the rise of ISIS some years later. Saddam’s real crimes were well known to US and NATO intelligence services, who kept him informed about the locations of Iranian troops during the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, in the knowledge that he would use mustard gas and sarin against them.
The US also provided Saddam with cluster bombs and helped him acquire chemical precursor agents. US-based Human Rights Watch estimated that Saddam killed at least 290,000 of his own people while in power. However, this figure is dwarfed by the number of Iraqis believed to have died in the aftermath of the 2003 invasion, due to occupation forces, sectarian violence or ISIS — this figure is estimated to be in the hundreds of thousands, if not in excess of a million.
The psychological shock-and-awe strategy was again employed in the lead up to NATO’s bombing of Libya, as the US and UK’s on-off relationship with Gaddafi took a turn for the worse after he planned to start selling oil in dinars (a new gold-backed pan-African currency) instead of US dollars or euros, and encouraged his African neighbors to follow suit.
The release of emails from Hillary Clinton’s private server in late 2015, just as the 2016 election campaign was getting under way revealed that such a move would have strengthened African economies and led to competition between the dinar and the dollar or euro. In fact there is in progress now a move led by Russia and China to dump the US$ as reserve currency and move to a system of settling cross border trades in the vendors currency. And earlier this year, China launched the Petroyuan, a gold-backed contract for trading oil futures, on the Shanghai stock & commodity exchange. So old Mad Dog Muammar was just unfortunate enough to be ahead of the game when he had no powerful allies to back him up.
On this occasion, we were treated to the excuse that bombing Libya and supporting the anti-Gaddafi rebels, including Al-Qaeda-affiliated elements, was necessary as Gaddafi was about to commit a massacre against the people of the rebel-controlled city of Benghazi. Another emotive claim designed to mould public opinion into accepting the war affirmed that Gaddafi was giving his soldiers Viagra so they could commit mass rape. An investigation by Amnesty International found no evidence to support this allegation and revealed that on several occasions anti-Gaddafi forces in Benghazi had made false allegations or manufactured evidence of human rights violations.
Without any sense of irony American, European and British politicians and the media now try to justify censorship of news and opinion, seeking to justify this illiberal and undemocratic activity by claiming it is necessary to silence those who spread ‘fake news’. Do we really believe governments and the media are going to censor themselves? Do we believe Google are suddenly going to cease and desist from suppressing factual information and opinions critical of their cronies in Washington? Do we believe Facebook are going to remove the globalist bias from their algorithms and give equal prominence to news and ideas that do not support Zuckerberg’s world domination agenda? Do we look as though we were born yesterday?
The concern of governments and their corporate friends about fake news is that with the rise of new media real news will leak out into the public domain and expose the fact that governments have been feeding us fake news since the modern era began with the protestant reformation.