PATRICK LAWRENCE: Cold War Escapades in the Pacific

There is a lot to read into this moment, but one thing’s clear. The U.S. doesn’t know what time it is.  

The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group steams in formation during a cooperative deployment in the Indian Ocean on July 20, 2020. (U.S. Navy. Donald R. White Jr.)

By Patrick Lawrence
Special to Consortiu
m News

First came the Defense Department’s formal request to Congress for a $20 billion check to upgrade its presence across the Pacific. That was last March. A month later the U.S. Navy sent three warships (and ever-faithful Australia one) to the waters off Malaysia because an unarmed Chinese vessel was conducting routine seismic surveys in an area thought to contain significant resource deposits.

Then a two-month pause, at least on the military side. The grandstanding denunciations, bans, bars, and sanctions have continued apace.  

In early July the Pentagon sent two aircraft carrier strike groups into the South China Sea in its latest and largest-ever “freedom of navigation” exercise, just as the Chinese Navy was conducting exercises nearby. Last week came the caker: Mike Pompeo, our Dummkopf secretary of state, asserted that China’s various maritime claims in the South China Sea are “completely unlawful.”

This was an abrupt departure from Washington’s previous pretense of neutrality on the question of jurisdiction over waters where assertions of sovereignty intersect. It was greeted in some quarters, not least the government-supervised New York Times, as opening the door to war in behalf of those nations — Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei — contesting China’s claims.

What Is Unfolding?

South China Sea claims map, 2012, by Voice of America. (Wikimedia Commons)

Let us pay attention here. What is and isn’t unfolding before us?

The Pentagon will get its check. Congress debates as we speak how much and when to spend on what it calls our Pacific Deterrence Initiative. The U.S. is about to buy a greatly enhanced, greatly more visible military presence in the western Pacific. Be sure to pay your taxes, readers.

The dispatch of warships to monitor a Chinese scientific vessel was sheer piffle. The Malaysians proved the adults in the room when they told the U.S. Navy to be on its way, thanks very much. Nothing whatever will come of this.

Ditto the carrier group’s escapade earlier this month. Like the silliness off the Malaysian coast, this was in the way of acting out — somewhat in the childish fashion the phrase implies. The element of spectacle is impossible to miss. There is no other meaning to be discerned.  

And Pompeo’s grand assurance that locked-and-loaded America stands aside those looking for a just settlement of the South China Sea question? This is the hollowest display of all. The U.S. has no legal standing in the South China Sea question; it is not party to any of the competing claims.

As Malaysia just made clear, those that have registered these claims intend to negotiate multilaterally and entertain zero desire to see America instead escalate this into armed confrontation.

New Circumstances

Lieutenants during drill on fast-attack submarine USS Topeka; Naval Submarine Training Center Pacific, Santa Rita, Guam, July 14, 2020. (U.S. Navy, Kelsey J. Hockenberger)

These things said, developments across the Pacific lately do leave us in new and very undesirable circumstances.

There has been talk of “a new Cold War” or “Cold War II” since the U.S. provoked the coup in Ukraine six years ago and then watched its miscalculated project go straight to hell. This is no longer a figure of speech or a “maybe” to be cast in the conditional. We have started a new Cold War with China now (while keeping up the one we’ve got going with Russia). It is on, and there seems no turning back.  

Parenthetically, what a job the ruling class in this country has done on the collective consciousness since the productive tumult of the Vietnam era. Nobody is in the streets as our new Cold War commences. Half or more of those who ought to oppose this travesty are all for it.

This is the frame within which we must understand all the other furnishings — the sanctions, the contemptible attacks on Huawei, China’s market-leading telecoms company, the persecutions of Chinese medical researchers and students —altogether the primitive xenophobia. Sweeping bans on Chinese visitors are now under review, as are plans to block Chinese investments in the U.S. We’re in for the full Monty, it seems. [The Trump administration is also considering ending existing visas and forbidding new ones to members of the Chinese Communist Party.]

Another Ruinous Cold War

Those who recall the first Cold War will know well enough the burdens we are to bear, all the lost opportunity. Those who don’t are about to learn. This is going to prove as ruinously wasteful and cripplingly distorting of the American worldview as it was the last time around.

Dreamy hawks in the John Bolton mold or “end times” kooks such as Pompeo seem to entertain fantasies of an open conflict with the Chinese. And true enough, we will now live again with the nerve-wracking prospect of war by accident or error. But this war will otherwise remain cold — this for the simple reason anyone with sense in Washington knows the U.S. cannot possibly win a war with the People’s Republic.

U.S. service members assigned to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency carry a transfer case during a repatriation ceremony, Da Nang, Vietnam, July 8, 2018. (U.S. Navy, Claire Farin)

Forget about Tennyson and the Light Brigade: The Pentagon will instantly reason why if ordered to do or die for some pointless, certain-to-fail engagement with Chinese forces, which are increasingly well-armed almost entirely in response to incessant U.S. assertions of power in East Asia.  

Does anyone seriously think the U.S. military, no matter how expensively equipped, would engage the mainland in behalf of the Malaysians, the Vietnamese, the Filipinos, or Bruneians? Out of the question. This is not about those people. It isn’t about securing sea lanes, either: They are secure. It is about the forlorn project of maintaining U.S. primacy in the Pacific — and a more unwinnable campaign one cannot think of.

It is now engraved in the American consciousness that the U.S. won the first Cold War when the Soviet Union collapsed. I have never subscribed to this version of the outcome. The Soviet Union collapsed due to internal dysfunctions that long predated the Cold War. And the U.S. lost plenty during those decades, a Pyrrhic victory if ever there was one.       

No such mythology will hold this time. America is already losing its second Cold War go-around. Let us consider two good measures of this reality.

China & Iran’s Strategic Partnership

Indo-Pacific region. (Wikimedia Commons)

Just as the Pentagon was parading an immense flotilla in the South China Sea earlier this month, we learned that China and Iran are about to enter a 25–year “strategic partnership” that will (1) rescue the Islamic Republic from the ravages of Washington’s “maximum pressure” campaign and (2) significantly extend China’s Belt and Road Initiative into the Middle East. had the story in detail; its report is here.  

This is a breathtaking accord in its extensive provisions. In tranches of hundreds of billions of dollars, beginning with $400 billion in the first five years, China is to invest in Iran’s energy, petrochemical, transportation, manufacturing, transportation, electricity and infrastructure sectors. All this will be linked to Belt and Road terminal cities in western China via the Central Asian republics. China will also get discounts of up to a third on purchases of Iranian energy and will be allowed to pay in non-dollar currencies.

An agreement of this kind has been in on-and-off negotiations for four years, the lurching progress due in part to China’s concerns about U.S. sanctions. Now Beijing seems to shrug at such threats — an interesting turn in itself. Unexpectedly, Tehran agreed last week to extend the accord to air and naval military cooperation. Russia also folds into these added provisions. This is what the Americans get for sabotaging the 2015 accord governing Iran’s nuclear activities.

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, left, and President Vladimir Putin meeting with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi, 2017. (President of Russia)

Now let’s consider the ever-elaborating relationship between China and Russia. This has been gaining in depth and breadth since Moscow and Beijing signed a $400 billion natural gas pact in May 2014 — three months after the U.S.–cultivated coup in Kiev, not coincidentally. At this point all the two sides seem to talk about is strengthening ties and increasing cooperation.

U.S. conduct is propelling this partnership, as both sides make clear. It was the Ukraine coup that prompted Moscow to turn eastward, and it is Pentagon’s constant provocations in East Asia that has Beijing turning in the other direction.

“The U.S. has lost its mind, morals, and credibility,” Foreign Minister Wang Yi said over the weekend in a conversation with Sergei Lavrov, his Russian counterpart. This refreshingly direct remark followed by a week a telephone exchange between Presidents Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin, in which the former reportedly said the two nations “should stand firmly against hegemony and unilateralism.” Whatever could they be talking about?

There is a lot to read into this moment. The world is much changed since Cold War I ran its course. Emerging nations now form alternative poles of power. Western markets are no longer the only markets to which these nations can turn. Old dependencies are breaking, new alliances forming. As argued severally in this space, parity between the West and non–West is a 21st century imperative. This is how it will come to be.

America’s leaders and many Americans, though not all by any means, avert their eyes as the world beyond our shores urges these realities upon us. Washington simply does not want to know what time it is. We are not, in consequence, destined to go gently into our new century, when at last we are forced to join it. We will have our new Cold War, and we will lose it.

Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, author and lecturer. His most recent book is “Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century” (Yale). Follow him on Twitter @thefloutist.His web site is Patrick Lawrence. Support his work via his Patreon site. 

The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.

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51 comments for “PATRICK LAWRENCE: Cold War Escapades in the Pacific

  1. Oregoncharles
    July 25, 2020 at 00:18

    “Acting on a challenge filed by the Philippines, the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled unanimously Tuesday that China used an “ill-defined history” as the basis for its claims of control in the Spratly Islands, the Scarborough Shoal, the Fiery Cross Reef and other strategic points in the South China Sea. ” see:
    I don’t like the source, but this was widely reported at the time – only four years ago.

    This means that Pompeo, wonder of wonders, is right (didn’t think I’d ever say that): China does not have a legal claim to the S. China Sea, despite the name. It’s claim – shown on Lawrence’s map in red – is based on a literally Imperial map (that is, it was made by the Chinese Imperial government); it’s just as valid as most imperial claims.

    This is a rare instance where the US Navy is serving a legitimate purpose, keeping the waterway open and defeating an usurpation; no wonder the Chinese are mad about it. Fortunately, both are nuclear powers so their reactions are severely inhibited. This was a theme of “Dune,” by the way.

  2. vinnieoh
    July 23, 2020 at 17:41

    Patrick I’ve been wondering if you use the phrase “parity is a 21st Century imperative” to hide a certain fear or foreboding; that pursuit of continued dominance will leave the US in a non-parity role, as subservient. Like you I see the US pursuit of its present policy as national suicide. Not only can the US not win a real war against China, it can not halt a natural civilizational evolution – the integration of Eurasia, or at the very least the ascendency of China to dominance throughout all of Asia. Because it has set itself an impossible task the US will waste and dissipate itself, and not even retain enough legitimacy to be accorded parity.

    Just a thought I haven’t been able to quiet since your previous excellent piece discussing this. Keep up the excellent writing.

  3. Jim other
    July 23, 2020 at 16:34

    We can hope that someone in power in the us will recognize that our superior military budget gets us only so far. Business people must realize there is a whole wide world to make money in. We are losing business, prestige etc by depending upon Trump as our only diplomat. Diplomacy used to be an honored profession. It is now being directed by a narrow minded pompous tody.
    We need more diplomats, nor soldiers to represent our country.

  4. jo kuhn
    July 23, 2020 at 12:47

    i´ve seen a different map where the chinese claim of territory is much smaller than on your map here—>

  5. July 23, 2020 at 10:44

    There are some terrifically insightful remarks in this comment thread. I thank all those who wrote in response to the column. — Patrick Lawrence.

  6. David Otness
    July 22, 2020 at 21:36

    Good work as ever, Patrick. Thank you.

  7. July 22, 2020 at 12:21

    South Korea refusing to bow down the USA is an unreported story. Trump demanded wealthy South Korea pay for American troops that protect them. South Korea is five times stronger than the North and said no. Trump said he would pull out some troops. South Korea said to go ahead, we don’t want them.


  8. Andrew Nichols
    July 22, 2020 at 03:04

    America’s leaders and many Americans, though not all by any means, avert their eyes as the world beyond our shores urges these realities upon us. Washington simply does not want to know what time it is. We are not, in consequence, destined to go gently into our new century, when at last we are forced to join it. We will have our new Cold War, and we will lose it.

    What pisses me off as a Kiwi living in Australia is that our leaders and state friendly media down here want to join in instead of learning from the past and staying the f..k out.

  9. evelync
    July 21, 2020 at 14:59

    The viciousness and psychopathy of our trumped up Cold Wars For Profit is exposed in a 2002 Canadian 1964 docudrama thriller “Agent of Influence” with Christopher Plummer. It relied on contemporaneous declassification of RCMP docs.

  10. DH Fabian
    July 21, 2020 at 13:41

    For years, Republicans have worked to build support for war against China while Democrats have worked to build support for war against Russia. US war mongering ultimately brought these two nuclear powers together, working out their years of conflict in view of this potential world threat. How do you think this will all turn out?

    • Tayo
      July 23, 2020 at 11:02

      This crazy dynamic repeats itself with Syria and Iran wherein the Democrats are for intervention in Syria while their Republicans are not. The opposite was the case in Iran.

  11. July 21, 2020 at 13:34

    just stand back; looks like a tiny lifeless virus will destroy America irreparably; now conquering same death numbers as the Hiroshima bomb –didn’t that bring the Japanese to their knees? Anyways, that is the story.

  12. rgl
    July 21, 2020 at 13:33

    I wasn’t ‘politically aware’ until about the mid ’70’s. Since that time, I understood that America’s prime foreign imperative was to prevent a coming-together of (at the time) communist Russia, and communist China. This was of paramount importance in Nixon’s ‘opening to China’; his SecState Henry Kissinger was forever fearful of such an outcome. He understood that America would take the back seat in world affairs should this ever happen.

    Today, due to American short-sightedness, and it’s hubris, Kissinger’s nightmare has indeed come to pass.

    In the main, I agree with Mr. Lawrence’s view that the main reason the USSR collapsed was due to it’s many ‘internal inequities’ lets call them. It should be understood though, that a significant contributor to these inequities were indeed due to the massive amounts of roubles the USSR needed to spend to remain immune from direct American aggression. Roubles that could’ve been spent pacifying the population.

    This is precisely what is happening in America today.

    A huge American defence (that is a laughable term in my view) budget is doing precisely the same thing as what happened just prior to the Soviet collapse. America cannot afford, under present circumstances, to provide it’s people with adequate healthcare. Nor an adequate education. Nor any significant infrastructure iniatives – never mind new ones, leave alone repairing what it does have.

    America is very much today like the Soviet Union was just prior to it’s collapse. Broke, hungry, and angry. I do in fact, see the USA going down the same toilet that the USSR did. America cannot, and will not be the premiere single superpower it was once. There laurels have rotted, and having sat on them for the last fifty years, they are beginning to fall through them.

  13. Fred Mc
    July 21, 2020 at 13:19

    Well said, Mr. Lawrence. The US (Washington) has indeed “lost its mind”.

  14. July 21, 2020 at 11:11

    The USA is the Great Britain of the 21st Century….

  15. Babyl-on
    July 21, 2020 at 10:59

    Sorry to rant. There is no “cold war” there has never been a “cold war” in the first so called “cold war” tens of millions of people died in proxy wars and covert CIA operations. Today the “cold war” is killing across the world.

    From August 6, 1945 to this day, the USA has engaged in hybrid warfare against the rest of the world, killing tens of millions. US slaughter has continually gone on now for over 75 years. Let me say again, every single day, like today, the US has slaughtered innocent people around the world for the past 75 years. THERE HAS NEVER BEEN ANYTHING COLD ABOUT WESTERN IMPERIALIST AGGRESSION.

    • David G Horsman
      July 22, 2020 at 15:02

      Per the few guesstimates I saw the US involved death toll is by now approaching 21 million.

    • Realist
      July 23, 2020 at 08:08

      Why that’s nearly the population of Australia. Not something to be ignored by any rational civilised beings. Yet it seems to be made no concern by the UN or the International Court. Curious lot, these humans.

  16. Randolph Garrison
    July 21, 2020 at 10:50

    Does everyone know about the continuing radioactive contamination of the Pacific Ocean by Japans reactor?

    • AnneR
      July 22, 2020 at 09:30

      Please let us not forget the continuing radioactive nature of the Marshall Islands and surely the seas surrounding them – deliberate product of US atom/nuclear bomb testing. The radiation-contamination of the soils, the birth defects and various bodily harms this has caused and will continue to, throughout the Middle East where the US has used (uses still) depleted uranium casing for its missiles, bullets and so on….

    • David G Horsman
      July 22, 2020 at 15:05

      One handy factoid to know is that exploding nukes reak havoc on the ozone layer. India and Pakistan alone could destoy the biosphere for centuries.

  17. AnneR
    July 21, 2020 at 10:37

    Thanks Mr Lawrence for this all too depressing review of the ongoing reality…This is how empires behave, believing as they do that only they have a right to determine the course of every other people, culture and society. Multi-polarity ain’t allowed; no sir.

    And it truly doesn’t matter which color face the Janus party presents, this mindset underlies them all in the institutions of power, influence and intention. Blues and Reds present the same perspective with different lipstick, ugly or pretty rhetoric, but they are all socio-psycho-pathically integrated into the same corporate-capitalist-imperialist worldview. Not that they have any intention of paying a dime or hair for anything they initiate, buy, support. Nope. That’s our job, the hoi polloi’s debt.

    And if one were in any doubt – the Biden is already threatening (even if elected!) to blame Russia/China for “interfering” in our elections in Nov. To visit upon these clearly (no evidence necessary for either face of the Janus lot) invidious, untrustworthy, dangerous countries (sorry, regimes) their “just” (as determined by us, the whited sepulchers, the pure as driven snow rightful imperial nation) deserts.

    It doesn’t get any better….having lived through one Cold War (with its large cluster of not so cold wars, “regime” changes, coups etc…) must we be in another one in order for us to reign supreme globally?????

  18. Christian J. Chuba
    July 21, 2020 at 10:02

    We are addicted to crusades and just as a junkie makes excuses for their addiction we will find a reason for aggression against the next most powerful country.
    Those reasons will always be the ‘Hitler play’, there is a Hitler (China/Iran), a Neville Chamberlain (waiting for role to be filled since Ron Paul retired), and a Winston Churchill (line forms on right).
    If we do nothing, war will come to us so TADA, that is why we should care more about the South CHINA Sea than Vietnam does.
    There are the victims of genocide – played by the Uighurs, CIA agitprop. China is repressive but there are no concentration camps, certainly not in the way that we imagine them.
    There is a Czechoslovakia – played by Hong Kong, it actually has been part of China for over 1,000 years but never mind, #FreeHongKong

    The real reason we want to crush China is because they are the only ones who can prevent us from controlling the world. Case and point Iran. When we nearly destroyed the JCPOA, we were able to force Europe, India, Japan, South Korea, and everyone except China to stop buying Iranian oil. All of those countries wanted to buy Iran’s oil and have either a neutral or good relation with Iran but with the power of our Treasury Dept. we can coerce them to do what they do not want to do. All except China which is why we need to stop them even if people must die.

  19. Michael McNulty
    July 21, 2020 at 09:28

    I’d say China has more rights to the islands it builds in the South China Sea than America has to Hawaii, or Britain has to the Falklands, or either has to Diego Garcia where Britain undertook a 100% displacement/ethnic cleansing. And the Aussies should remember what they did to the aborigines, the original inhabitants of the land they stole, including attempts to breed out their bloodlines by having them marry whites while controlling their right to marry each other. A bit like the early-20th century US eugenics movement. All quite Nazi.

    • AnneR
      July 22, 2020 at 09:25

      Michael – all too bloody true, and about time that we (Brits, Amis, Aussies [Brits in disguise]) had to pay for all of the atrocities we have committed, inflicted on indigenous people around the world in our desire to be top dog, global fuhrer. But what does the UK and US do? The UK sticks up its two fingered FY to the ICC/ICJ (I get confused which is which) on last year’s ruling regarding returning the Chagos Islands back to the Chagos islanders and so those people remain in poverty deliberately grabbed from their homes, lands, their animals killed; and the US sticks up its one finger FY at the ICC refusing to accept even that court’s weak-kneed and rare attempts to hold the imperial powers to account. The UK can’t even p***ing well *apologize* for its deliberately caused famines in India, including the one of 1943 which killed over 3 million, its Amritsar Massacre (in 1919)…

    • David G Horsman
      July 22, 2020 at 15:12

      Anne I think we can add Canada to the list of genocide perpetrators. We’re always making contigency plans to toss some ethnicity in a camp.
      Our mining practices have been horrific.

  20. peter mcloughlin
    July 21, 2020 at 08:37

    I must respectfully disagree with Patrick on a few points, on an otherwise excellent article. Terms like “New Cold War” or “Cold War 2” are dangerous because they are misleading. They logically imply that what’s unfolding now will end as the original Cold War did. What we are witnessing is more like the lead-up to 1914 or 1939. History is littered with examples where nations convinced themselves they could win a war that they could not. (For a free ebook and essay on why humanity is plunging towards world war three search: ghostsofhistory.wordpress).

  21. Tim Jones
    July 21, 2020 at 07:27

    A number of economists have said it’s not a matter of if, but when the US loses their reserve currency status. At first, it may not be formally, but defacto, then money and a practical ‘sense’ tend to rule the day and it will be formal.

  22. Southern
    July 21, 2020 at 06:16

    In early July the Pentagon sent two aircraft carrier strike groups into the South China Sea in its latest and largest-ever “freedom of navigation” exercise, just as the Chinese Navy was conducting exercises nearby. Last week came the caker: Mike Pompeo, our Dummkopf secretary of state, asserted that China’s various maritime claims in the South China Sea are “completely unlawful.”

    Waging wars of aggression are unlawful – the nation that once introduced the Nuremberg principles is willfully ignorant of these principles and threatens those who dare to criticize her human right defying foreign policies.

    Last week it was Venezuela now it’s the South China Sea’s…again.

    Freedom of navigation using nuclear weapon carrying warships by a country that first of all does not abide international laws – has threatened the ICC not to investigate its warcrimes and has already approved plans to use military force to extract their ”own” from the ICC in case they’ve been served with the very due process they’re famous for denying anyone who dares to stand in path of global destruction the excruciating long history of crimes against humanity and lying about the reasons for waging wars of aggression that hasn’t even ratified the laws of the sea to force their way into the territorial waters of a sovereign nation such as Venezuela last week with a democratically elected socialist government that has already been subjected to unjustified economic sanctions and numerous coup attempts and propaganda campaigns – we all know it’s all about the oil.

    I know which country desperately requires a regime change – Subsequently the world will become a much better and safer place.

  23. July 21, 2020 at 05:11

    This is an excellent piece.

    Patrick Lawrence nicely sums up the current dynamics between the US, China, and Russia with a good sense of the utter futility of America’s efforts to reorder things.

    Yes, for Russia, America’s Ukraine adventure was a turning point, and what a sad mess America created there when it toppled an elected government, creating forces for secession, civil war, and a good deal of misery in the economy plus a prominent role for a few Nazi-like parties – complete with armbands and torchlight parades.

    And the resulting new focus of Russia on the East with China and others makes for a nice achievement. That is a formidable new economic and diplomatic force in the world, as China just dramatically demonstrated with Iran.

    China has never threatened anyone in the South China Sea. They have clearly stated that all normal commerce will continue and that they will negotiate all issues with neighbors and that they will be responsible for all emergency services in the region. And if you study the matter, they have reasonably good claims for what they are doing, certainly better claims than America has.

    So why is the US spending billions to send armadas to the other side of the planet? I think it is just because there are people with powerful positions in Washington who cannot accept the fact that it is no longer 1953. We have a brave new world, and America is quite out of step with what is emerging.

    On the question of war with China, something that America’s intrusive activity and rude words always risk accidentally igniting, America cannot possibly win a conventional war.

    And it’s not just a matter of the vast Mainland with its vast population and its vast armies. China’s latest generation of anti-ship missiles would send the entire American fleet to the bottom in fairly short order. They are formidable and pretty much unstoppable in their method of attack.

    That would leave the US wanting to go nuclear.

    • July 21, 2020 at 17:23

      The US has formally entertained nuclear first-strike doctrines since at least 2010. Browse for “Nuclear Posture Review.”

    • Tim Jones
      July 23, 2020 at 09:00

      First strike thinking has been around since the Cuban Missile Crisis. Just think, If Kennedy and Kruschev had not been writing those secret letters, with RFK and others as go-betweens, we wouldn’t likely be here today discussing anything.

  24. Zhu
    July 21, 2020 at 05:03

    Maybe Pompeo has discovered China in the book of Revelations….

    • Sally
      July 24, 2020 at 22:15

      Let’s hope that crazy really… REALLY….. discovers Jesus.

  25. Miatadon
    July 21, 2020 at 04:12

    There’s a new Cold War, and China and Russia don’t need to do anything to prevail. The US will lose due to its own failures that are bringing on economic and political collapse.

    • DH Fabian
      July 21, 2020 at 13:49

      Actually, those “changes” you refer to began as far back as the “Reagan Revolution.” We’ve been going over these issues for years.

    • Corn Pipe
      July 21, 2020 at 16:30

      Yep. That was also part of bin Laden’s plans, or hopes. A few airplanes defeated the US by causing or greatly accelerating it’s self-destruction.

    • David G Horsman
      July 22, 2020 at 15:17

      As he hoped, Bin Laden’s efforts to create wide spread hysteria were a complete success. We are our own worst enemies.

  26. geeyp
    July 21, 2020 at 02:06

    Indeed, Patrick, other nations have moved on and formed partnerships with one another, we read, practically every week. This is the way humanity must go for the future. So we have a President who asks his CIA director who now is Secretary of State to have a sit down with a 30 year systems expert who proves that Russia had nothing to do with our U.S. 2016 election. Does this man listen and then act accordingly? Does it matter what anyone who knows what is truly going on tells this man? No and no. Not willing to listen to proper advice for the good of the country and then doing things to hurt the country is treason, a word that I don’t use lightly.

  27. Drew Hunkins
    July 21, 2020 at 01:06

    One wonders how the entire Western mass media, capitalist think tanks, Washington insiders, Congress, cable TV talking heads, the liberal intelligentsia and the neo-cons would react if China had a few giant aircraft carriers maneuvering around in the Gulf of Mexico.

    I wonder if they’d all be perfectly rational and fairly quiet, not really minding one bit about it, just merely going along with their daily Kanye West story or celebrity wedding story. I wonder if they wouldn’t be shrieking and screaming and totally freaking out on DEFCON 2 across every front page newspaper in the country or covering it with breathless reports on every news show for 24 hours, demanding some sort of cataclysmic response. Though I’m not a betting man, except for a couple of parlay cards on college football every few weeks during the season, I would bet on the latter.

    • Zhu
      July 21, 2020 at 05:50

      A few years ago, the US media were fouling their breeches over a couple Chinese naval vessels entering the Bering Sea, which are international waters. I thought we should offer them some king crabs.

    • AnneR
      July 21, 2020 at 10:39

      Drew – IF only China – and Russia – had an aircraft carrier or three wandering around the Gulf! Perfectly legal outside of US territorial waters…

    • DH Fabian
      July 21, 2020 at 13:51

      I was thinking along the same lines, wondering about the hysteria if Russian ships moved in close to Alaska.

    • Drew Hunkins
      July 21, 2020 at 14:13

      Ha! Good one Zhu.

    • Drew Hunkins
      July 21, 2020 at 16:01

      Indeed it is Anne. Perhaps that would give our bloodthirsty leaders a moment of pause.

  28. Drew Hunkins
    July 21, 2020 at 00:56

    Let’s be careful to understand that imperial Washington sometimes makes mistakes and errors along the way, but for the most part the Washington-Zionist militarist imperialists know exactly what they’re doing and exactly how to go about extending their hegemonic aims across the globe.

    The B.R.I. or New Silk Roads is scaring the trousers off the Wall Street-corporate predators and I just cannot tamp down a good chunk of me that delights in their fears and uncertainties. Let them feel even a modicum of the same social stresses that 80% of the U.S. population is experiencing living with debt peonage, shoddy healthcare coverage, and economic precarity.

    • Tim Jones
      July 21, 2020 at 07:18

      Both comments are very to the point. Well done!

    • Rob Roy
      July 21, 2020 at 22:18

      Excellent article, Mr. Lawrence. Thank you for your clarity, as usual. Send a copy to everyone in Congress.

    • Drew Hunkins
      July 22, 2020 at 00:19

      @ Tim Jones,

      Thank you. Us 99%ers are all in this together.

  29. Thomas Scherrer
    July 20, 2020 at 21:31

    I mean, if only we had somebody in one of the two major parties running a presidential campaign on a possible “New Cold War”…

    • Zhu
      July 21, 2020 at 03:26

      Both dementoids want war-war-war.

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