September 27, 2005

US Empire: Endless War and Economic Hit-Men

Charley Reese on John Perkins' book, "Confessions Of A Hit Man":
In a nutshell, the game is played this way: People like Perkins work for consulting firms, and their job is to entice a foreign head of state to go deeply in debt. They do this by greatly exaggerating the economic returns on big projects such as dams and electrification systems.

The payoff comes in two ways. The foreign country hires American contractors to build the systems, and they make big profits. Then, mired in debt, the head of state will do what the United States government tells him to do. If he proves too independent or too honest to accept bribes, then he will be removed from power, either in a coup or in an accident.
For example:
Omar Torrijos, a Panamanian reformer, and Jaime Roldos, president of Ecuador who locked horns with big oil companies, both died in planes that exploded.

On the other hand, the ruthless and corrupt killers who play the game our way get rewarded with more loans and more aid. I know this sounds leftist and even, God forbid, liberal, but the more you get to know our government, the less you will think it's all sweetness and light. People fear the U.S. with good reason. We talk about spreading democracy, but what we do is extend empire and make war.

If you count the Cold War, we have been at war almost continuously. There was Korea, Vietnam, the invasion of Lebanon, the invasions of Panama and Grenada, the bombings of Serbia and Libya, our little misadventure in Somalia and two wars with Iraq, and now that the Cold War is over, we have replaced it with an endless war on terrorism. Sprinkled in between all of these overt wars are numerous covert operations.
Read the book. The publisher is Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc.

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