February 19, 2008

Everywhere Is War

Der Spiegel interviews Henry Kissinger. I find myself constantly needing to step back and think about what he is saying, and the biases upon which his ideas are constructed. For example:
There was never a question in the mind of European populations that the state was authorized to ask for sacrifices and that the citizens had a duty to carry it out. Now the structure of the nation-state has been given up to some considerable extent in Europe. And the capacity of governments to ask for sacrifices has diminished correspondingly.
He says that like it's a bad thing! And of course, in his mind it is:
I think it is obvious that the United States cannot permanently do all the fighting for Western interests by itself. So, two conclusions are possible: Either there are no Western interests in the region and we don't fight. Or there are vital Western interests in the region and we have to fight.
Hey! How about this conclusion: yes, there are vital Western interests in the region, and that means you should NOT fight!

No, Kissinger is not even capable of thinking like that. When his sad, bloodshot eyes gaze at the far horizons, all they see is war. And not just one war, but many wars being fought simultaneously:
You cannot simultaneously attempt to overthrow the government of Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan in the name of democracy and fight radical Islam. The democratization processes and the war against radical Islam have a different time frame.
So much for the old argument about invading Iraq to spread Freem 'n Moxy (TM). Kissinger doesn't even bother pretending that eliminating Islamic radicals will help spread Moxy across the Middle East.

But "radical Islam" sprang up as a protest against the despotic pro-Western governments in the Middle East. So if you really want to "defeat" it, shouldn't you be addressing that root cause?

Not in Kissinger's Israel-centric world:
If Iran wants to be a respected nation-state in the region without claiming religious or imperial domination, then we should be able to come to some form of understanding. But we will not reach that goal unless Iran realizes that this is not a historical opportunity to resurrect Persian dreams of glory.
For "Persian dreams of glory" read "equality with Israel". And that really is the crux of this whole bullshit "war" on "radical Islam" - keeping Israel's enemies in check. Not by talking and negotiating, but by killing and destroying.

As one commenter at ICH said:
Henry Kissinger was a failure in Asia, failure in Latin America, and a failure in the Middle East. His conclusion is always the same, "Stay the course".
Kissinger is 84 years old now. His course will not be stayed much longer. This interview was done in New York, as Kissinger's ability to travel is nowadays restricted by his potential arrest for War Crimes.

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