Month: March 2014

Definitions

Many conflicts, both large and small, come down to definitions.  

Sometimes the dispute is overt, about the word itself: like the definition of consciousness, or free will, or space; such debates are often political in nature, like defining when life begins, or what terrorism is, or whether waterboarding is torture.

Most of the time however conflict arises between two parties who don’t realize that they each have a different definition for the word in question, or at the very least, a different context for the use of the word. A single example I’ll supply for now is from the state where I live, Ohio.  There is a dispute between a hospital and an Amish family with an 11 yr. old daughter who has cancer.  The family doesn’t want their daughter to go through chemo therapy, and the hospital has filed charges to remove the girl from her family’s care, in order to treat her with cancer (sources). While I believe the files have been dropped, and I do believe there is a lot to say here, I simply want to make one point, that I think that underlying this dispute is a conflict in defining what life is between the two parties.

The hospital sees a life as a biological organism with complex mechanistic functions, and has a goal to maximize the number of heartbeats for that organism.  The Amish see a life as a willful being arrived on a proving ground, the objective is otherworldly, and the number of heartbeats don’t figure as heavily into the equation.  From this point of view each party is trying to preserve life as they define it.  I wonder how much each understands the point of view of he other.

Follow-up on WWIII Post

So a couple days ago I wrote a piece entitled Beginning of WWIII.

In it I neglected to mention whether I actually consider large scale war as a possibility, yet the article may have implied that I did.  On a scale of likelihood from 1-10 that the Ukrainian destabilization will lead to war I’m currently thinking 4, but this could change quickly. I do believe there is a real chance this one could escalate.  The Current international situation seems precariously similar to the pre WWI entanglement of alliances, debt, and pressure points that are potential catalysts for escalation, key among them in my mind being Syria, Ukraine and the East China Sea.  Instead of anarchists and communists running around there are “radicals” and “fundamentalists”, “protesters” and “freedom fighters”.

In Ukraine there are a confluence of interests between different powers.  The Crimean Peninsula is a strategically vital position for Russia. It mediates the transport of a large amount of Russian oil and goods.  They have had a controlling interest in the region since before the Crimean War in the 1850s (where we can also note Britain’s and France’s interest in the region).   From a military/economic standpoint it is of great strategic importance to retain control of that region.

NATO on the other hand, seemingly lead by US military-industrial-complex interests, have had a long term agenda to destabilize former Soviet sphere regions, and encircle Russia, and they are finally on their doorstep.

The EU has an interest in gaining the Ukraine as another dependent and resource.  Specifically, the EU central bank would stand to benefit a great deal by having a place to expand into, and sell  money to at interest.

And where would Ukraine get its initial investment to be able to buy into the EU? Well from the IMF, the vulture-capital superpower that is offering a 35 billion dollar loan so long as the Ukrainian coup-de-tat government plays ball.  Russia had only offered 15 billion to the previous government.

It should be noted that the coup-de-tat government’s new acting president is a former EU central banker, and was literally spoken about as the first choice for the US state department back in December in a coup-de-tat situation in Ukraine.

International money and oil interests seem to be converging here. Russia is doing more than saber rattling. Does that mean there will be a military escalation of the influential, behind-the-scenes powers? No. More likely it spells some kind of civil war in Ukraine, a kind of cold-war revisited tactic.

A worthwhile question to ask yourself is whether this large scale game of risk actually benefits anybody? If so, whom? Does any so-called nation-state stand to benefit from this in the long term?

Further exploration:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WgGva1aFPw

Watch the above beginning at 23 min.

http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2012/08/2012-us-elections-obamney-vs-rombama.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukrainian_hryvnia

A Not So Famous Quote

The thesis I venture to submit to you is as follows: That during the past forty or fifty years those who are responsible for education have progressively removed from the curriculum of studies the Western culture which produced the modern democratic state; That the schools and colleges have, therefore, been sending out into the world men who no longer understand the creative principle of the society in which they must live; That deprived of their cultural tradition, the newly educated Western men no longer possess in the form and substance of their own minds and spirits and ideas, the premises, the rationale, the logic, the method, the values of the deposited wisdom which are the genius of the development of Western civilization; That the prevailing education is destined, if it continues, to destroy Western civilization and is in fact destroying it.

I realize quite well that this thesis constitutes a sweeping indictment of modern education. But I believe the indictment is justified and here is a prima facie case for entering this indictment.

— Walter Lippmann, speaking before the Association for the Advancement of Science, December 29, 1940

Beginning of World War III?

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-28/officers-76th-russian-shock-troops-division-operating-ukraine

If so, we have no one to blame but ourselves. Months ago I remember reading on Tony Cartelucci’s site, LandDestroyer (here), that the spearhead for the Ukrainian opposition is the the Neo-Nazi group Svoboda, who John McCain happened to be at a rally with in the Ukraine.Image

The corruptness of the Ukrainian coup and the US and Nato’s relationship with them has been further Documented by Paul Craig Roberts.  Here is a quote from Roberts’ article,”The Crisis  in Ukraine”:

As Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland made clear in her speech last December and in the leaked recording of her telephone conversation with the US ambassador in Kiev, Washington spent $5 billion of US taxpayer dollars engineering a coup in Ukraine that overthrew the elected democratic government.

William Engdahl, writing at his own website, WilliamEngdahl.com, and Russia Today has also made connections between western establishment interests and key members and groups involved in the Ukrainian coup:

Evidence suggests that key players in the Ukraine protest movement are being steered and orchestrated by Washington-funded NGO’s like the National Endowment for Democracy, the German Marshall Fund in The United States (a Washington think-tank financed by a donation from the German Parliament), and certain key neo-conservative Bush-Cheney leftovers in senior positions at the State Department.

Already on October 11, 2011, the German Marshall Fund hosted Vitaly Klitschko, then-WBC Heavyweight Boxing Champion just entering Ukraine’s political boxing ring, at a Washington meeting to discuss Ukraine’s European perspective.

(As a side note I’d like to point to a historical pretext for Germany’s interest in Ukraine.  Ukrainian nationals helped the Third Reich during WWII(see Bandera), and it should be noted that a large number of German immigrants settled in Ukraine region during the nineteenth century.)

Max Blumenthal has also made the same connections as the above authors.

This is reprehensible, but it is nothing new.  I neither like nor respect the Russian government, nor do disagree that the Ukraine is riddled with corruption.  It is time though to turn a critical eye introspectively. From Libya, to Syria, to Ukraine, to Iran the United States and Nato have been an aggressive force, albeit often covertly, however indiscreet to any incisive observer of “modern” civilization.

Someone I respect a great deal said that the Universe is spoken into existence.

Despite what this so called US government tries to coerce people to agree to, I am not at war. I do not go to war with Russia, or Syria, or Ukraine, or anywhere else. And anyone claiming to be acting on my behalf in this regard does not have my consent to wage war.  

I am a small voice, a single voice, but others must speak up,others are speaking up.  Do not consent to wars of aggression, or the coercion of other groups and nations into war with each other. The death of the anti-war movement with the election of the current administration is a tragedy.

A better world is possible, and it is right there to be lived, and it begins with a refusal of consent. It is an act of empowerment, and if enough people begin to take an active part in refusing consent I believe we will be surprised at the effect this has on transpiring of events.