“We have about 50% of the world’s wealth but only 6.3% of its population… In this situation, we cannot fail to be the object of envy and resentment. Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity without positive detriment to our national security. To do so, we will have to dispense with all sentimentality and day-dreaming; and our attention will have to be concentrated everywhere on our immediate national objectives. We need not deceive ourselves that we can afford today the luxury of altruism and world-benefaction.” (George F. Kennan, US State Dept Policy Memorandum, February 1948)
“In brief, for the United States, Eurasian geo-strategy involves the purposeful management of geo-strategically dynamic states… To put it in a terminology that harkens back to the more brutal age of ancient empires, the three grand imperatives of imperial geo-strategy are to prevent collusion and to maintain security dependence among the vassals, to keep tributaries plaint and protected, and to keep the barbarians from coming together.” (Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives, 1997, p. 40)
Today, I’d like to follow up on my first article (written on the October 9th) on the October 8th’s decision of 2010 Nobel Peace Prize. My second article, again critical in its nature, though, hopefully as an open dialogue with our readers, supporters and friends around the globe, will begin by arguing core thoughts of the above-quoted excerpts from two of the most important American geopolitical strategists so far, one from right after the WWII and the other since the 1980s till this very day.
The first one is George Kennan who was one of the most influential American architects, in 1950s, for its geopolitical strategy. According to many, including Prof. Noam Chomsky, Kennan’s fundamental ethos seems to have continued to influence successive American governments till this very day in order for them not to “fail to be the object of envy and resentment.”
Looking back its history since the WWII, it’s apparent those successive US administrations seemed to have been very much faithful to what Kennan had said in 1948 in terms that it has devised “a pattern of relationships which will permit [for them] to maintain [their] position of disparity.”
However, taking a much more sophisticated step than what Kennan advised, they seemed to have made sure they have not only “deceived [themselves] that [they] can afford today the luxury of altruism and world-benefaction” (Kennan), but also have tactically employed those values (“altruism and world-benefaction”) as amply deceptive tools for their “soft power” strategy (Joseph Nye) in order to “disguise their real imperial ambitions” (Noam Chomsky).
The other one is Zbigniew Brzezinski whose name persists so long in the arena of geopolitical strategy, particularly his lasting for over 30 years of influence, starting from Carter Administration as his National Security Advisor till this Obama White House. He can be well deserved as probably one of the two most important contemporary, still living, global strategists in America’s modern politics, together with Henry Kissinger to influence, direct and shape their successive administrations’ foreign policies in terms of geopolitical power politics.
If the former strategist (Kennan) prepared for the second half of 20th Century regarding the introduction of America’s global dominance into the world, the latter (Brzezinski), again together with Kissinger, have done for the 21st Century in terms of continuation of American “global primacy.” He plainly, without any hesitation, revealed in his 1997 “The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives” America should do whatever it needs to do in order to “maintain its global primacy through its “imperial geo-strategy” over the whole world, as in the above-quoted excerpt.
On October 9th when I first critically argued about the “self-inflicting and disgraceful” decision by the Nobel Peace Award Committee to award Mr. Liu Xiaobo its 2010 Laureate, I was reminded, as always, of the above-mentioned America’s seemingly never-dying “imperial ambitions” in the form of its “imperial geo-strategy.”
According to Kennan and Brzezinski, I believe there seem to have been the two most fundamental geopolitical principles which have continuously characterized, guided and shaped America’s foreign policies and its international relations with other world powers around the globe as follows: 1) To “maintain a position of disparity” in the world; 2) To continue “America’s global primacy” through “imperial geo-strategy,” particularly by “keeping the two barbarians (meaning, both China and Russia) from coming together.” (Brzezinski).
Needless to mention, including Nobel Peace Prize, International Olympic Games, and so on, almost all globally-important issues, incidents, and relationships seemed to have not been free from often unavoidable conflicts among those global power relations, particularly between those major powers, i.e., at present the “G-2” powers.
In the past, it was between the US and the (former) Soviet Union during the Cold War era. Now it’s between China and the US in this new 21st Century. Today’s rapidly changing power relations in terms of its restructuring processes among those major global powers have gone through already for sometimes now.
No matter how the Nobel Peace Award Committee argue, claim, and insist its position on the 2010 decision (to award one of the most controversial figures in China) a just act which was made out of “impartially and purely for the sake of individual freedom and democracy,” particularly when China’s relations with the US and the West at the moment are in one of the most contentious rocky times, it seems it can hardly earn wholesomely universal supports from the whole globe.
No matter how much the 2010 Norwegian decision entertains unanimous supports from the West in general, the US in particular, and no matter how the Nobel Committee defends its already badly-battered name, its “historical tendency which has preferably awarded candidates who have come from mostly the West, male, pro-West, pro-US, and/or anti-communist backgrounds (e.g., Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Mikhail Gorbachev, Andrei Sakharov in the case of anti-Soviet Union, and Liu Xiaobo and Dalai Lama in the case of anti-China) can hardly escape from further critiques which arguably identify the Award with the “politically-, ideologically-, and racially-discriminated” one.
Now the supposed-to-be-neutral organizations like the Nobel Peace Award Committee even joined other Western and American governments and their political leaders like President Obama to call for “immediate release of Mr. Liu from imprisonment” in China.
I wonder if they really understand what they, apparently like a well-organized entity, are doing together by pressing, in fact forcing, a sovereign independent nation to free a person who has publicly called for more than 20 years by continuously organizing, mobilizing and inciting his fellow Chinese citizens and even foreign governments/organizations/agencies to force his own sovereign government to be changed or subdued to “accomplish Western-style of modernization in the form of being colonized for at least 300 years by the West.”
I really wonder how those same Western governments, including American and Norwegian, would react to a very similar or same situation where Chinese government has been thrown into for sometimes now by having their own “Liu Xiaobos” on their own soils.
I wonder in what way American government could handle similar situations if China, Russia, many other governments around the world challenge them to call for “immediate release” of someone like Mr. Leonard Peltier, a globally-renowned American Indian activist and the longest serving political prisoner in America more than 30 years in jail, whom American government “convicted and sentenced in 1977 to two consecutive terms of life imprisonment for the murder of two Federal Bureau of Investigation agents during a 1975 shootout on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation,”
Even if the case of Mr. Peltier is a globally well-known story for a longtime, however, just in case for the sake of some readers/audiences who might have not known of his case, let me quote the following excerpt from the Leonard Peltier Defense Committee in below:
“Leonard Peltier — a great-grandfather, artist, writer, & indigenous rights activist — is a citizen of the Anishinabe and Dakota/Lakota Nations who has been unjustly imprisoned since 1976.
A participant in the American Indian Movement, he went to assist the Oglala Lakota people on the Pine Ridge Reservation in the mid-70s where a tragic shoot-out occurred on June 26, 1975. Accused of the murder of two agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Peltier fled to Canada believing he would never receive a fair trial in the United States.
On February 6, 1976, Peltier was apprehended. The FBI knowingly presented the Canadian court with fraudulent affidavits, and Peltier was returned to the U.S. for trial.
Key witnesses were banned from testifying about FBI misconduct & testimony about the conditions and atmosphere on the Pine Ridge Reservation at the time of the shoot-out was severely restricted. Important evidence, such as conflicting ballistics reports, was ruled inadmissible. Still, the U.S. Prosecutor failed to produce a single witness who could identify Peltier as the shooter.
Instead, the government tied a bullet casing found near the bodies of their agents to the alleged murder weapon, arguing that this gun had been the only one of its kind used during the shootout, and that it had belonged to Peltier.
Later, Mr. Peltier’s attorneys uncovered, in the FBI’s own documents, that more than one weapon of the type attributed to Peltier had been present at the scene and the FBI had intentionally concealed a ballistics report that showed the shell casing could not have come from the alleged murder weapon. Other troubling information emerged: the agents undoubtedly followed a red pickup truck onto the land where the shoot-out took place, not the red and white van driven by Peltier; and compelling evidence against several other suspects existed and was concealed.
At the time, however, the jury was unaware of these facts. Peltier was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life terms. He is currently imprisoned at the U.S. Penitentiary in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania.”
If Mr. Liu Xiaobo were an American, one could possibly imagine he might have been either assassinated like Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mr. Malcom X, or put into jail like Mr. Peltier for over 30 some years. This sort of historical imagination is not a groundless, ill-willed, or daydreaming act to demonize America.
As fully-described in one of the most popularly-read history books in America such as “A People’s History of America” written by late Prof. Howard Zinn, countless number of people have been victimized such as in the well-known cases of Mr. King, Jr., Mr. X, and Mr. Peltier by politically-, racially-, and/or ideologically-motivated assassinations, terror acts, brutal killings, and incarcerations in jail.
The above-argued issues are some of the very reasons why so many people around the globe regard what the Norwegian Nobel Committee, together with American/Western governments, did in behalf of Mr. Liu and their collective callings in unison for his “immediate release” as a politically-motivated and morally-hypocritical act.
At any rate, it seems what US government (as they call themselves, “Empire of the 21st Century”), supported by the Norwegian Committee and those Western (both former and present) colonial powers, did this time, as it’s done many similar things in the past as well, could hardly not to be considered, judged, or interpreted as politically-intentional, -motivated, and -prepared acts to make China further embarrassed, demonized, and weakened in its international standing, its international relations, and thereby its national image.
In today’s global power politics, there have been some sort of radical changes and transitions going on in global power relations, particularly between US and China relation for sometimes now. Under the US-led “new world order” since early 1990s, its global “primacy,” until recently, as the “sole global superpower,” had run the whole show all by itself. However, in this early part of the new century, that once “new” world order has been rapidly becoming an old and outdated one.
Among many, as globally well-known, one of the most recent conflicts between the two giants is the currency issue. In addition to a number of other contentious issues, the trade imbalance issue has become lately very sour. Many global analysts like Mr. Robert Dreyfuss argue the decision to award Mr. Liu the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize can be hardly free from those present ongoing battles between the “G-2” nations, though they aren’t engaged with real direct military conflicts.
Dr. Kiyul Chung who holds is now teaching as Adjunct Professor at School of Journalism and Communication, Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. He also works as Editor-in-chief of The 4th Media, English Website for the April Media Group.