Every Empire Falls

Every empire falls and the fantasy of American exceptionalism doesn’t exempt the U.S., writes Wilmer J. Leon, III. Yet the failing hegemon behaves as though it still controls events, but instead creates worldwide danger.

President Joe Biden disembarking at Japan’s Hiroshima Heliport in May after G7 meetings. (White House, Adam Schultz)

By Wilmer J. Leon, III
Black Agenda Report

“We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality — judiciously, as you will — we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors … and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” Karl Rove – 2004

By most accounts, Karl Rove was correct about the American empire.  Nineteen years ago, America had the strongest military in the world, but the economy was showing signs of weakness. Back in March 2000, the stock market bubble burst, resulting in the NASDAQ or “dot com bubble” crash. Still at that time, most of the country believed former President Ronald Reagan as he referred to America as “the shining city upon a hill.” 

Due to its military might America was able to project its power and impose its will upon the world.

Rove’s arrogant assertion that “…when we act, we create our own reality…” is a major part of the problem that the American empire is facing today. What gets lost in this assessment is the historic reality that all empires run their course.  The European, Greek, Roman and British empires tell the stories of tragic endings. A common and significant factor in their demise was arrogance.  Instead of recognizing the changing of global dynamics, the geopolitical landscape and making the requisite adjustments, they believed they could manage the world by sheer force, power projection and will.

America is blinded by its arrogance and cannot properly assess the realities before it.  America still believes it is the unitary hegemon and many of its recent actions are exacerbating its demise.

In 1991, President George H. W. Bush announced a “new world order” that he believed would replace the bipolar politics of the Cold War era with a U.S.-driven unipolar order. 

His son, George W. Bush — while still governor of Texas but running for president — outlined the foreign policy principles that would guide his presidency, promising a “distinctly American internationalism,” again, not so subtle code language for a unipolar American order.

Karl Rove at the LBJ Library in 2015. (Jay Godwin, Wikimedia Commons, Public domain)

Recently, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and other Biden administration officials continue to discuss a “rules-based order.”  They seem to be the only ones who know what the rules are.

America continues to assert itself as a unitary power in what is emerging as a multipolar world. In The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway’s character Bill Gorton asks Mike Campbell, “How did you go bankrupt?” Mike replies, “Two ways …Gradually and then suddenly.”

The unipolar hegemonic dominance of the U.S. is bankrupt and coming to an end. 

In October of 2020 I published a piece entitled “The Non-Aligned Nations Realign” wherein I wrote,

“As the U.S. has emerged from the post-Cold War era as the unitary global hegemon, it became increasingly more difficult for countries to maintain their sovereignty and battle the inequities of the ‘new world’ economic order imposed upon them by the United States. The U.S.’ ‘maximum pressure’ campaign of sanctions and regime change has been applied as a weapon of economic warfare against U.S. ‘enemies’ such as China, Cuba, Iran and Venezuela. Except for China, these tactics have crippled economies and wreaked havoc on societies.”

With the technology at our disposal, we can see the demise of the American Empire happening in real time.  According to Alexander Mercouris, host of The Duran,

“the great period of danger in any international system is when the overarching empire declines, when it starts to lose control. Whether they (the leaders of the empire) understand that their empire is in decline and try to manage that decline in a way that preserves the international system or whether alternatively they try to go for broke and they try to preserve their position by managing conflicts that they believe that they can win.”

Even though the empire is in decline, it is far from over. It is important to understand that America is a nuclear power and still maintains military dominance over most of the world.

Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC) at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, intended to provide command and control of air power throughout Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and 17 other nations. (U.S. Air Force, Joshua Strang, Wikimedia Commons, Public domain)

According to The Soldiers Project, America has roughly 750 U.S. foreign military bases spread across 80 nations. Russia (a nuclear power) has about three dozen bases and China (a nuclear threat) has just five.

This implies that the U.S has three times as many bases as all other countries combined.  One of the major challenges facing the U.S. is nuclear deterrence and the concept of mutually assured destruction. A nuclear attack by one superpower would be met with an overwhelming nuclear counterattack such that both the attacker and the defender would be annihilated. 

With that reality being understood the issue shifts to one of economics. Until recently, the U.S. has been able to assert its will via its economic leverage and a sanctions regime combined with the threat of military action. That’s not working any more.  The non-aligned nations have realigned.

China, Russia & Other Realignments  

China’s President Xi Jinping addressing 25th St Petersburg International Economic Forum in  June 2022. (Vladimir Smirnov, TASS, Kremlin)

In response to the U.S. sanctions regime, China and Russia were forced to reassess their interests and differences. They came to understand that U.S. hegemony and imperialism was a common threat. The U.S. proxy war in Ukraine has proven to be a major threat to Russia and the U.S. involvement in Taiwan threatens to start a war with China. Russia and China now enjoy the best relations they have had since the late 1950s. There is a “new world order” on the horizon but it’s not the same order Bush 41’ spoke about.

Other examples of global realignment include, on March 10, Saudi Arabia and Iran announcing the normalization of ties brokered by China and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa inviting 67 country leaders and 20 representatives of international organizations to the upcoming BRICS summit.

From left: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and his wife Tshepo Motsepe, Peng Liyuan and her husband Xi Jinping, president of China, at a performance in Johannesburg during a 2018 BRICS meeting. (GovernmentZA/Flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0)

Even though it’s not on the immediate agenda, BRICS is moving towards a new currency that will be based on a basket of the currencies of the initial five-nation bloc. Kenyan President William Ruto has called on African nations to shift away from using the U.S. dollar for intra-continental trade and opt for the use of local currencies.

In response to U.S. sanctions, the non-aligned nations are realigning, making it increasingly more difficult for the U.S. to project its power as nations seek to assert more control over their country’s resources and governance. 

It is important to realize that in spite of U.S. sanctions, well-stocked Iranian supermarkets have opened in Venezuela and Iran is exporting oil to Venezuela. China and Iran have entered a 25-year strategic partnership in trade, politics, culture and security.

Remember when President Joe Biden told the world that U.S. sanctions against Russia would cripple its economy? “As a result of these unprecedented sanctions, the ruble almost is immediately reduced to rubble…,” he infamously said.

According to World Bank data, Russia was among the world’s five largest economies and the largest in Europe in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP) as of the end of 2022, despite Western sanctions.  China topped the list as the world’s biggest economy ($31 trillion), followed by the U.S., India and Japan.  So much for U.S. sanctions.

Even as the U.S. is trying to protect its drone base and France’s access to uranium by attempting to exert its power in Niger, the current leaders of that government would not take a meeting with America’s coup plotter extraordinaire, Acting Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland.  They would also not allow her to meet with deposed President Mohamed Bazoum. They are ignoring the “rules-based order.”

Uranium mines appear in blue, at left; dark spot on right is the Nigerien urban area of Arlit, desert sands in yellow and orange. (Coordenação-Geral de Observação da Terra/INPE, Flickr, Wikiedia Commons, CC BY-SA 2.0)

As Algeria, Mali and Burkina Faso continue to back the junta in Niger, the U.S.’ ability to control the dynamics is in question.  It becomes increasingly more difficult to project power when the world sees that you are weak and alternative alliances become available.

Americans see America in the romantic context of Reagan’s “shining city on a hill” while the “Third World” sees the U.S. as a monster, in which the taints, the sickness, colonialism/neo-colonialism and the inhumanity of Europe have grown to appalling dimensions. The “non-aligned” nations are in realignment. The U.S. should be as Killens says, about “free people” not “free enterprise.”

It is said that a dying mule can manage to engage in some kicks. These kicks may be dangerous, but they don’t last long. Progressively, they become weaker and weaker until the mule finally gives up. We know the U.S. empire won’t go quietly into the night. That’s when it is proving to be its most dangerous.  As Antonio Gramsci wrote,

“The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.”

Dr. Wilmer Leon is the author of Politics Another Perspective and a nationally and internationally broadcast radio talk show host. Go to or email: [email protected]. www.twitter.com/drwleon and Dr. Leon’s Prescription at Facebook.com

This article is from Black Agenda Report.

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

50 comments for “Every Empire Falls

  1. Dienne
    August 21, 2023 at 10:13

    If we had the strongest military 19 year ago, how come we couldn’t been a bunch of poorly-armed peasants in Afghanistan?

  2. LeoSun
    August 20, 2023 at 17:26

    “I’ll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office.” (Washington DC, 12 May, 2008)” George W. Bush

    “A bitter wind blows through the country. A hard rain falls on the sea. If terror comes without a warning. There must be something we don’t see. What fire begets this fire? Like torches thrown into the straw. If no one asks, then no one answers. That’s how every empire falls.” John Prine @ hxxps://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Hsu2oASd6x8

    “Welcome” to The “MALARKY” Factory’s “Reign of Terror!” OhBama. Oh, Biden. Oh, Blinken & Sullivan. Barr, Pompeo. Bolton. Durham, & Trump. Nuland & Garland. Epstein. Clinton. Harris, Wray. Dunn. Jean-Pierre. Kennedy. Tanden. Myorkas & AUKUS, sowing Hate + War aka BIDENOMIC$. The appendage of Biden’s-Harris’ War on Terra. The rot @ the core of he political corpse, Biden-Harris, posing as POTUS masquerading as human.

    To the top of the WH. To the top of roof, in partner$hip w/the M.I.C., F.B.I., C.I.A., IRS, Congress, Corporations, MSMedia, Social Media, imo, on a mission to kill US.!!!

    HEAR! HEAR!! Under the guise of good will,!“[EVERY EVIL] the U.S. accuses other nations of perpetrating, it has done on a far grander scale itself. It just does it under the pretense of promoting freedom and democracy and fighting terrorism, under cover of outsourcing and narrative management.

    “The U.S. government is a blood-spattered serial killer wearing a plastic smiley face mask.” Caitlin Johnstone.

    “Remember when” Biden-Harris suckered everybody into a National Play To Pay (P2P) i.e., $2000 bucks, for everybody, “Just color Georgia f/BLUE;” AND, outta the US Trea$ury’s gate, a Thirty Percent (30%) Cut, Off-The-Top, for “The Big Guy!”

    “America Is Back!” Biden’s-Harris’ American Re$cue Plan $1400 Big One$ for U.S. Taxpayers. “GENERALLY, be based on either 2020 or 2019 tax returns, depending on the most recent filings that have been processed by the IRS. Plan. A Stimulus.”

    Imo, Plan B, Stimulus, 2023, CONGRESS does the one thing it won’t be able to resist doing: REMOVE & PREP Biden-Harris, et al., for indictment, prosecution, incarceration; and, most importantly, a big f/defeat, from Coast to Coast & everywhere in between. “The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old” UNIPOLARITY (Old School) is dying and the new” MULTIPOLARITY Is BORN. Thriving! Ri$ing!!! “in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear,” i.e., Biden’s-Harris’ war on terra and their radioactive rules based order, RBO @ home; &, abroad, RBIO, is declared Null & Void! “Book ‘Em, Garland” Hold ‘Em @ Joey’s REHABoth Compound. BIDEN-HARRIS 2024, BUSTED!!!

    “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.” ? George W. Bush

  3. Sam
    August 20, 2023 at 13:21

    Good article, but an important development completely ignored is the effect that Global Warming will have on the USA and most other nations. Such a development will have more and more impact on human life, property damage, and loss of critical ecosystems providing food and water. These are the direct effects. But there are also indirect effects, when for instance other nations and regions of the world are directly affected, the USA and other nations will be affected by those tragedies elsewhere. We are about to witness a global disaster.

    It’s typical human folly to get lost in our own problems, which are often self inflicted, and then to have the rug pulled out from under us by acts of nature.

    Most importantly, we humans are not doing what we need to do in order to prevent the most serious outcomes of Global Warming. Despite the fact that the US citizens pays out about $1.5 trillion for all the entanglements associated with “national security,” there’s little awareness that Global Warming is the major threat we face. Our current political, corporate, and military institutions are failing us. The paradigms by which they operate preclude us from taking the necessary steps to save our society.

    Methinks nature will impose herself on the political dramas described in this article, with tremendous affect on outcomes.

    • Willow
      August 20, 2023 at 14:37

      The most vocal climate change activists were studiously silent when the Nord stream sabotage resulted in year’s worth of methane to be released into the environment. They issued no demands for justice. They hypocritically remain silent as the nuclear war plotters are escalating to unleash nuclear winter, the extinction level climate change event. upon the world.

    • Valerie
      August 20, 2023 at 16:05

      “We are about to witness a global disaster.”

      Sadly Sam, i fear you are right.

    • vinnieoh
      August 21, 2023 at 09:48

      From an article in The Texas Tribune on June 23, 2023:

      “As a record-breaking heat wave bore down in June, extreme temperatures triggered a series of failures in West Texas’ gas supply infrastructure that led to more than 300 tons of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere.

      According to more than a dozen reports filed by gas pipeline operators with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, extreme heat caused compressor stations along gas pipelines to dial back or shut down in June, which caused dangerous pressure buildup inside the pipes. In response, operators released hundreds of tons of natural gas through emergency valves and shut down other compressors in the network.

      In Reagan County, a rural Permian Basin county with about 3,360 residents, reported emissions were nine times higher than the June average for the prior six years, according to an analysis of self-reported industry emissions data to the state by the Environmental Integrity Project, an environmental nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C.

      That analysis followed an earlier report by Public Citizen, an environmental watchdog group in Texas, stating that 18 emission events — the term used for unexpected releases of airborne pollution — were attributed to extreme heat in the West Texas gas fields last month, including nine in Reagan County. Those emissions included 362 tons of natural gas, which is largely made up of the potent greenhouse gas methane.

      “It is sadly ironic that the fossil fuel industry is seeing its equipment threatened by a situation it helped create,” Adrian Shelley, Texas director of Public Citizen, said in the report.”

  4. August 20, 2023 at 10:17

    Well written. A lot of points I agree with.

  5. TimD
    August 20, 2023 at 09:26

    It might be that Karl Rove, was just the first one to say the quiet part out loud. When America expanded west and took native lands after the revolutionary war, it was an act of empire; as was the war with Mexico, the Spanish and the invasion of former Spanish colonies. Monroe was close to saying it in 1823 when he declared the reality that control of the western hemisphere was now American. G. W. Bush was acting inline with a country that had a long history of taking over or controlling other territory.

    The two big differences now are that the returns from imperialism no longer benefit the average American and the cost of maintaining control is higher than the earnings from it. When an empire’s costs exceed its benefits strange things happen.

    • Carolyn L Zaremba
      August 20, 2023 at 15:42

      Yeah. When an empire’s costs exceed it benefits it goes down. Fast.

      • TimD
        August 21, 2023 at 09:53

        Absolutely, and the country cut its own benefits by offshoring manufacturing to low-wage countries. When one looks at other post industrial revolution empires, they used possessions as sources of raw materials and captive markets. This helped increase investment, create work in factories and led to greater domestic growth. Offshoring changed that equation, by hollowing out the country’s manufacturing – good jobs were harder to find for the average person – but the wealthy got even wealthier because of lower production costs. This has led to the current slow economic growth and high government deficits in the US.

  6. August 19, 2023 at 21:14

    “Biden administration officials continue to discuss a `rules-based order.’ They seem to be the only ones who know what the rules are.” But then it’s more important for them to know such rules, since they’re the only ones planning to violate them with impunity.

  7. Robert Crosman
    August 19, 2023 at 16:49

    The Roman republic’s transition to an empire was so gradual that the Romans themselves didn’t recognize it for hundreds of years. Starting with the end of the Punic wars (202 B.C.) Rome’s rule grew outside of the Italian peninsula, while a series of generals (Marius, Sulla, Pompey, Julius Caesar) dominated politics until Augustus Caesar established a dynasty. Even then, however, Romans continued to think of themselves as living in a Republic, and of Augustus as “princeps” – not a prince, but more of a “first citizen.” Similarly, we Americans think of ourselves as living in a democracy, while in fact it is the super-rich and large corporations that rule. It’s even questionable whether it’s an AMERICAN empire, or if it’s international capitalism that really rules.

    • JonnyJames
      August 20, 2023 at 12:21

      Yeah, I would describe the US as an empire run by a kleptocratic oligarchy, similar to the late republic and imperial period of Rome. I argue that the US is not a republic, nor a democracy. International capitalism is dominated by the US Dollar, and corporations based in the US and vassal states (UK/EU/Japan/Canada/NZ/Aus). The IMF/IBRD are dominated by the US and US Dollar as well.

    • Carolyn L Zaremba
      August 20, 2023 at 15:43

      “We” Americans do NOT think of ourselves as living in a democracy. Unless we’re as brain dead as Biden, that is.

    • DMCP
      August 21, 2023 at 03:56

      Well said. Those living at the center of an empire have little idea of how the empire functions and naturally believe in the benevolence of their state. So it was with Rome and so it is with us. American citizens never experience the economic and military violence that is projected outward by our state; we are insulated and protected. The American empire developed gradually and only became global after WWII. Which, then and now, was viewed as a Righteous War Against Evil. Similarly we do not recognize the gradual decay of our own conditions as a signal that the empire is failing. Because of course we have never (as a nation) recognized it as an empire. And yes, I agree that capitalist corporations control all the levers of power in the US now, and that capitalism has no sense of national attachment; it just follows the path for profits. We are all caught in a giant net of international capitalism and thereby made to act as agents of our own destruction.

  8. lester
    August 19, 2023 at 13:57

    Next step: blame scapegoats! China, Russia, Zionists, the space aliens in the Moon! All the while burning up from unrepaired global warming.

    • Sam
      August 20, 2023 at 12:41

      Zionists are not a scapegoat. They are a murderous bunch who get away with murder.

      • Carolyn L Zaremba
        August 20, 2023 at 15:44

        True enough.

      • Henry Smith
        August 21, 2023 at 01:23

        And when the empire falls the zionists will be alone and they will be judged by their actions.

  9. Vera Gottlieb
    August 19, 2023 at 10:08

    Every empire falls…and this empire will fall too…THANK GOODNESS!!!

    • Valerie
      August 19, 2023 at 20:03

      And “the bigger they are, the harder they fall”.

  10. WillD
    August 18, 2023 at 22:38

    “America is blinded by its arrogance and cannot properly assess the realities before it. ” It is certainly demonstrating all of these attributes, along with ever increasing amounts of gross stupidity that wouldn’t fool a 4 year old.

    I think the US establishment, and most of its vassal state ally countries – particularly in Europe, have totally lost touch with reality, and no longer even cares what their citizens think, as long as they can keep the fantasy alive.

    Europe has long believed itself superior, even to the Americans, but is now so badly infected that it doesn’t know why it is doing any of the things it has been forced to do by the US. It’s as if the US told the EU ‘point that gun at your foot and fire it, then do the same to the other foot, and then work your way up to your head’.

    Clearly there’s truth in the saying ‘blind leading the blind’.

    • Carolyn L Zaremba
      August 20, 2023 at 15:45

      My thoughts exactly.

  11. bardamu
    August 18, 2023 at 21:27

    Americans’ faith in their institutions continues to break records for all-time lows. We can’t take this as the same as understanding the nature or extent of problems, but projections of the future are by their nature speculative.

    It is high time to speculate, this article is welcome, and I think we need proceed to a next question. We know that the Empire will fall in some sense, faster or slower or more or less completely. We do not know a lot about whom it will fall on, what its flailing will tear going down, as it goes down, or what more productive and less destructive systems we might manage in its wake.

    Again, again, again, the eventual question becomes “What is to be done?”

    • Steve
      August 19, 2023 at 08:09

      The first thing that is to be done is reduce the size and scope of the empire.

      Concentrate on getting right with your own citizens. Let the rest of the world fend for itself. In the words of George Washington, avoid foreign entanglements. Quit trying to control everyone and everything (that also applies within your own borders).

      • Carolyn L Zaremba
        August 20, 2023 at 15:50

        Don’t be ridiculous. We live in a global society in instant communication with every part of the world. We face existential dangers that are global, like the pandemic and climate change, that can only be dealt with globally. Nationalism is a concept that was only viable when distances and communications took months and battles were fought with swords and arrows. It is an anachronism tht must be abandoned sooner rather than later. The revolutionary socialists knew this a long time ago and the likes of Lenin and Trotsky had a clear picture of the future that would come to pass unless governments grasped the realities of the 20th and 21st centuries. When antagonists can launch deadly weapons against the other side of the planet and destroy the world, anything less than global unity is deadly.

        • Piotr Berman
          August 20, 2023 at 22:19

          “that can only be dealt with globally”, but how that could possibly happen? People and nations agree on a course of action in two ways: they are convinced that it is better for them, or, alternatively, they are compelled, brutally if needed, but preferably with softer means, e.g blackmail.

          For example, what happened in the rather short period when pandemic loomed like a terrible danger and vaccination like deliverance. Collective West spend a lot of effort to (a) badmouth all non-Western vaccine (b) hoard vaccines at a multiple of actual needs (c) create the situation in which in country (and EU) had to go for non-disclosed agreements transferring huge wealth to 2-3 companies. Hard to see a more selfish scenario.

          Measures concerning global warming are similarly unappealing, although it is a vastly most complex issue. Yet, our experts are not any more reliable. For example, huge efforts directed at luxury goods and new classes of derivatives. Then hoarding technologies and maneuvering that competitors are blocked as much as possible with sanctions, embargoes etc., like Chinese solar panels and Russian nuclear power generators. So what non-nationalists should do?

  12. Lois Gagnon
    August 18, 2023 at 20:52

    Our greatest obstacle is the corporate media. Too many people in the West still think they get all the information they need from these imperialist aligned sources. My experience in providing links to independent sources usually results in these msm addicts finding what they read in my sources so outside their internalized beliefs, they can’t relate and so continue to rely on the official propaganda.

    I suspect they probably know on some level, they’re being lied to, but they’re scared to death to face what is coming if the independent sources are correct. Sadly, this fear of facing reality allows the empire’s beneficiaries to continue to wreak havoc on the world. How to break through the wall of denial?

    • Susan Siens
      August 19, 2023 at 14:14

      Yes, as a woman told me when I wrote about Israel’s influence in U.S. politics, “You’re the only person saying these things. I have never heard anyone else say this.” Fortunately, she did watch Russell Brand’s interview of Whitney Webb and maybe got that I am NOT the only person saying these things.

    • Carolyn L Zaremba
      August 20, 2023 at 15:52

      That has been my experience also.

  13. Jeff Harrison
    August 18, 2023 at 18:41

    While I agree with this piece in general, I have some problems with it. The US didn’t rule by virtue of having the most powerful military. Russia’s military possessed an equal number of warheads and delivery vehicles. The US could not push Russia around in the ultimate exchange at the OK corral. The US has the larger military but that’s not necessarily a winner. As an example, the US is preparing to pull out of Niger. Why? Like many of those 800 bases, the ones in Niger have a couple of thousand people. Not troops, people. Most of them are for the care and feeding of the drones we use to bedevil the natives. The Nigerien army could clean them up no problem. Those “Lilly pads” are useful only to the extent that they are in a friendly country and/or are capable of quickly being reinforced. Niger is no longer either. I don’t want to denigrate the power of the US military but it’s like the fiddler crab. One giant claw and not much else. What the US has in abundance is the arrogance of Turd Blossom and the almighty dollar. And the importance of the dollar isn’t as a reserve currency, either. The dollar is a parasitic element of international trade. International trades go from national currency to US $s to national currency. If you took the US$ out of the middle, you would deprive the US of a bunch of income derived from forcing the world to buy dollars. You would also deprive the USs unilateral sanctions of their sting which are a result of the US blocking other countries access to US dollars. Finally, you would make it far more difficult to fund our outrageous debt. We are living in interesting times.

    • John Rowland
      August 19, 2023 at 10:02

      Agree that they US did not rule by its military alone.

      Unfortunately, the US is presently completely focused on Hard Power. When was the last feel good movie made with an uplifting moral message? (you know like “Its a wonderful world”). When did the US last do something good for an other country, that made the citizens of that country better off? (Like the Marshall Plan) The power of the US was in its ideals, however poorly they lived up to them. In the last 20 years, all the world has seen from the US is bullying, and failed military operations.

      • JonnyJames
        August 20, 2023 at 12:01

        US power also hinges on US Dollar Hegemony. I recommend the now-classic book on the subject by prof. Michael Hudson.
        Super Imperialism: The Origins and Fundamentals of US Dominance.

        The US can simply seize (steal) USD assets held by other countries. Look what happened to Iran, Venezuela, Russia etc. They had “sanctions” imposed on them and 10 of billions have been seized. That’s why countries are going to slowly de-dollarize, so they won’t have their reserves stolen.

        Also, USD assets (cash, treasuries, stocks etc.) remains the dominant currency for central bank reserves, international commodity trades etc.

        The Almighty Dollar is a key factor in maintaining US power.

    • Carolyn L Zaremba
      August 20, 2023 at 15:53

      Getting away from the dollar is already in progress.

  14. Patrick Powers
    August 18, 2023 at 18:31

    Reporter Bill Moyers never confirmed that Karl Rove said that. The source remains secret.

    The author left out Donald Trump’s inaugural address. “In every capitol, in every land, it’s America first, America first, America first.” Seemed pretty clear to me.

    Or former NATO Commander Wesley Clark. On Democracy Now! he quoted a general saying in 2003, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.”

    • DMCP
      August 20, 2023 at 03:00

      The Karl Rove statement came from an interview with Ron Susskind:


      In a famous exchange between a high official at the court of George W. Bush and journalist Ron Susskind, the official – later acknowledged to have been Karl Rove – takes the journalist to task for working in “the reality-based community.” He defined that as believing “that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” Rove then asserted that this was no longer the way in which the world worked.

      “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” (Ron Suskind, NYTimes Magazine, Oct. 17, 2004).


      source: hxxps://www.globalresearch.ca/karl-roves-prophecy-were-an-empire-now-and-when-we-act-we-create-our-own-reality/5572533

      That might explain why Bill Moyers did not confirm it.

      • Carolyn L Zaremba
        August 20, 2023 at 15:54

        Failing to deal with reality is why post-modernism is such bollocks.

    • IJ Scambling
      August 20, 2023 at 10:28

      Actually it was Ron Susskind, reporting what an aide to Bush said, but doing so on agreement he would not reveal the source. Rove subsequently denied he made the quote and Susskind did not want to break his agreement to keep it anonymous.


      Nevertheless, the statement has not only been taken as Rove’s, but if nothing else is excellent symbolism for the neocon worldview and its arrogant assumptions.

      Speaking of “morbid” this now infamous historic statement certainly qualifies. It suggests a “we’re-now-taking-over-and-telling-the-rest-of-the-world-what-to-do” attitude we normally associate with seriously disturbed individuals.

    • vinnieoh
      August 20, 2023 at 13:20

      Glad that others corrected the record. If Rove said it or it was paraphrased (or embellished by Suskind) it does uniquely describe the administration of GWB.

      Though I was angry as hell at the cruelty and criminality, I was also in awe of how they did certainly anticipate events. Every time an event might seem to curb their campaigns (Iraq War) they seemed to pull a response out of nowhere. It certainly seemed the whole timeline of those 8 years had been gamed out before it was all put in motion. All contingencies anticipated and probabilities assigned.

  15. JonnyJames
    August 18, 2023 at 18:29

    Great article, thanks to CN, BAR and Dr. Leon.

  16. August 18, 2023 at 17:29

    Thank you. I have always thought that Karl Rove’s statement about creating their own realities clearly framed their narcissism and delusion perfectly. It provided real insight into how the political elites see themselves and the world in terms of masters and pawns. They are in complete control, and they will do as they please. There is a personality type associated with wanting to ascend the hierarchy at all cost, and they are in general people who lack all empathy, or the ability to see through other’s eyes. They all have very self-serving blinders on, and they are exactly the type of people who should not be in charge of anything. For example, their lack of ability to see other people’s perspectives makes their foreign policy very, very dangerous.

    • Mark Stanley
      August 19, 2023 at 11:17

      Yes John. Sociopaths, psychopaths, and narcissists are in charge of the planet for the most part. I do not think anything will really change until the consciousness of humans elevates to where we can recognized sociopaths when we see them, and say, “No I will not vote for you–no I will not buy your product, no I will not join your club, or your church.
      Here is a broom—use it.

      • Carolyn L Zaremba
        August 20, 2023 at 15:56

        I’ve been wielding that broom since I was a teenager in the 1960s.

  17. Adama
    August 18, 2023 at 13:06

    “Remember that all through history, there have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they seem invincible. But in the end, they always fall. Always.” – Mahatma Ghandi

    The reasons are quite fascinating, for the few who enjoy reading history. Usually arrogance, and especially a determination that the ‘rules’ no longer apply to the rulers of the empire. Once the elites become convinced that now that they are a ‘Great’ Empire and thus the rules no longer apply to them, then the rulers foolishly over-reach and cause the destruction of their empire through their arrogance.

    A very common rule that the arrogant break is the one that says that even an empire can not afford a long series of endless wars. The expenses from that sort of thing leads to Queens saying ‘let them eat cake’ and all that follows from that. “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness’, ‘liberty, equality, fraternity’, and ‘peace, bread, land’ were all slogans that resulted from arrogant rulers trying to force the costs of their endless wars down upon their suffering people.

    All empires fall. And usually from their own stupidity. The one thing the Americans are not is exceptionally original.

  18. susan
    August 18, 2023 at 12:55

    Most Americans are completely gullible and will likely go down with the proverbial ship…

    • Elle
      August 18, 2023 at 16:28

      Unfortunately, we might all go down, if our leaders continue to have their heads up their butts so far that we end up with accidental or intentional nuclear exchange. It’s time for a real peace movement. I’m sick to death of them effing with my children’s and grandchildren’s futures.

    • Steve
      August 19, 2023 at 08:00

      I don’t think that is true.

      Most Americans see the Empire is broken. That is why we have two leading presidential candidates with underwater approval ratings. The American population has diagnosed the problem. They just have no idea how to fix it. A vote for Biden doesn’t fix it. Neither does a vote for Trump. Nor a vote for some third party who will get crushed in the election, or throwing all the bums out of Congress (who will just be replaced by a different set of bums). We are rapidly approaching the point where people start to wonder whether violent means will succeed where non-violent means have failed.

      • Vayk
        August 19, 2023 at 10:57

        Most Americans don’t have a clue.

        • Henry Smith
          August 21, 2023 at 01:50

          IMO, the american education system teaches exceptionalism, this leads to a belief that all foreigners are second class and undeserving of respect. Other western nations tend to follow this line; superior USA, inferior foreigners.
          The reality is bursting their bubble and causing real mental issues as evidenced by the statements and behaviours.
          Nothing other than complete changes of governments can address the problems and enable the West to move forward. Unfortunately we are all along for the crazy ride.

      • Carolyn L Zaremba
        August 20, 2023 at 15:57

        That is why we need a revolution. Times like ours inevitably breed revolution. It is coming,.

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