29th October 2016
This now global war is quite different from previous war as we normally imagine it. In a way, due to the presence of nuclear weapons that could wipe out the antagonists within minutes of launch, this war should also be called the “Tepid War”. It is neither “Cold” like the one that brought down the Soviet imperium, nor as yet a “Hot war”. No side as yet wishes to unleash Armageddon.
Both Turkey a NATO Alliance Member, an attack upon which by any aggressive state would “trigger” Article 5, that guarantees that all of NATO’s Membership would come to her aid but Russia too is holding back and instituted a series of lengthening “cease fires” over Syria, so as not to allow the mischance of a direct confrontation with NATO. It is more of a Tepid War of brinkmanship: a bit like a cold and hot tap running warm then cold then hot and back again- a bit like a faulty boiler.
It is also a war of proxies. Also, more than anything a religious war but also part of a plan to form a kind of world dictatorship but also gain access to scarce resources and maintain the dominance of corporate dollars but especially the Petrodolla, in which oil was paid for until China effectively “junked” the former by inserting its Yuan into a basket of other global currencies. There is a fault-line here that can be exploited by people clever enough to play the market and weaken the other currencies within the aforesaid basket. It is therefore a war of commercially competing states and corporations, many with incomes worth far more than nation states.
Profit is to be gained from sales of arms to competing states but a chance to test new technologies, like “drones” but also the normal materiel used in classic wars like ships, aircraft, tanks and all the other panoply of war. It also keeps the antagonists home industries going but also allows the testing of advanced detection systems and defence-attack technology, that in itself drives massive and expanding industries of armaments. War is a great financial way of increasing corporate wealth by the evolution and expansion of these “derivatives”.
Then there is the cost in human terms, the loss of land and damage to the planet in the territory in which the wars are being prosecuted. The Banks and corporations make huge profits from repair of the destroyed infrastructures in the “post-war” period. The “winners” also get to decide what kind of political and even religious system the defeated must embrace.
Then there are the high interest “Marshal Plans” that inevitably follow and which the International Monetary Fund becomes involved and that place the defeated state into kind of “pet dog alliance” with the winners. All out thermonuclear war is not terribly profitable and kills any gains to be had from more “Tepid approaches” to global war, as we see in the events now breaking in Syria. Syria has been broken in order to take land that could be used to lay a pipeline to bring in gas from the state of Qatar, so displacing Putin’s Russia as the main supplier of gas but also oil to a failing “EU” that is very susceptible to Russian moods and blackmail.
In this conflict there are no “Good guys” but a number of grey folk seeking to play their hands in the great card game called euphemistically, “The Great Game”. It is even known for the various states affected to change sides and even back again, such is the nature of this type of war. Then there is the plan for a Greater Israel but that is an essay itself that I shall return to when I have time.
It is well known, that Germany under Merkel seeks a traditional accommodation with Russia and the continuance of gas supply to its thirsty population. As dear old “Arthur Daley” would say from the British television’s comedic drama “Minder”, “Terry that’s a nice little earner!”
The USA “Neo-cons”, most with dual citizenship with Israel, do not want a link up with Germany by Russia. This was the major reason the USA changed regimes in Ukraine. Israel fears a resurgent Germany too but Germany fears a replay of the Eastern Front reprising the 1940-45 catastrophe. So we see another element in this “Tepid War”- Fear of a global war like the last and a despoiled Europe. This is the social realism aspect but also strategic. Forgive me reader if I bore you but make these observations I must to come to my conclusion.
With Ukraine now a de facto US client-state within what is truthfully an American Empire-indeed becoming a classical imperium in the normally accepted way of such things, in the same way Rome and ancient Persia and Parthia used their “client-states”, with bitter wars often fought between the legions of Rome and Parthia but that never until the arrival of the Sasanian Dynasty threatened the existence of their respective empires under Ardashir I as “King of Kings”. Prior to that the MAD doctrine of the day, carefully understood and nurtured by that master state-crafter Octavian- that wars in future could destroy more valuable citizen legions- a much reduced Roman Army after the civil wars since 100BC, that kept a careful balance of around 28 to 30 legions (Division-corps) that did not threaten a shaky Principate that followed the defeat of Cleopatra and Mark Antony at Actium in 31BC.
Roman legions despite the defeats at Carrhae and under Antony were lethal to a Parthian regime, that itself faced serious internal dissension from ambitious “Medes” over which it ruled. When the Romans did seek the lost Eagles around 20BC, the Parthian Shah returned them and came to the understanding above with “Augustus”, whose military advisors like Agrippa and later Tiberius, his adopted son were masters of their art. As Von Clausewitz said in his “On War”, war is above all a “Social event” not a “science” and he is again quite correct.
However there is also the other components within the wars we discuss but especially the “Tepid War”, we currently observe going on around us in the UK and Europe, as well as the “Fertile Crescent”. Those components include religion but also power and pursuit of the same. There is also the major problem of fanaticism and ridiculous fantasies of “Exceptionalism” and this is the straw, that could so easily escalate our Tepid War to a very thermonuclear hot one. Then there is the cross fertilisation of ideation of ideology and method that is an important aspect to all war.
The original “Crusades” of the late 10th to 11th Centuries was brought about by the plea of Byzantium for aid against the Saracen Infidel. Pope Urban II at Claremont…
“Most beloved brethren: Urged by necessity, I, Urban, by the permission of God chief bishop and prelate over the whole world, have come into these parts as an ambassador with a divine admonition to you, the servants of God. I hoped to find you as faithful and as zealous in the service of God as I had supposed you to be. But if there is in you any deformity or crookedness contrary to God’s law, with divine help I will do my best to remove it. For God has put you as stewards over his family to minister to it. Happy indeed will you be if he finds you faithful in your stewardship. You are called shepherds; see that you do not act as hirelings. But be true shepherds, with your crooks always in your hands. Do not go to sleep, but guard on all sides the flock committed to you. For if through your carelessness or negligence a wolf carries away one of your sheep, you will surely lose the reward laid up for you with God.“
It was a defensive war for the Holy Land despoiled by the pagan “Mohammedans”. It also allowed the aristocracy to send out their scions to win a fortune and territory for themselves, in European feudal society that was rapidly expanding its population but also a chance to rid fathers of competing heirs and land owned by these knightly families.
“Islam” was a threat to Europe itself and indeed Spain had been invaded and taken in the year 711AD. The Crusades started with the “Reconquista” and ended in 1492. It is why Spain was until recently the epitome of a Catholic nation. The brutality on both sides, was far removed from the “tolerant multicultural revisionism” we read of today. That brutality was rather an ideological infection or contamination of a previously rather benign late Roman civilisation, under the Latinised Christian Gothic rulers; threatened by a violent competing monotheistic but highly intolerant but also racial theology, the Spanish retaliated in kind. I fear we may see the same in Europe if things continue as they are.
Whether it be “Exceptionalism” in Islam or America, or “Nazi” or “Communist”, desperate times imbue strong elements of survival in the human victims and antagonists but also increasing extremes of violence and loss of socially imbued normative limits to acceptable behaviour. In Southern France, Spain a whole system of knightly and courtly behaviour arose that led to the famous medieval legends and ballads, as a counter to the strategy foisted upon them by invaders.
The existence and existential Control of a Moral Imperative did moderate both sides for a while but the invasion of more brutal forms of Mohammedan brought extremes, that differed greatly from the previous ruling elites both effectively realising that war had limits but not after the savagery of the Almohads and others, in much the same way we contest with Wahabis today in the Near East and Europe. Syria was in many ways a modern Al Andaluz: a secular state where all faiths lived beside one another.
Chivalry and brutality can often grow from the same tree, dependent on the types of society involved. We see a good example in our current “Tepid War” in Syria.
Wahabist “exceptionalism” or American “exceptionalism” will not benefit any of us in this awful climate of conflict. This conflict also had other lessons- the use of “merceneries”, devoid of loyalty to a higher purpose in the utilisation of corporate paid insurgents, mass immigration used to dilute nation states and eventually establish a global dictatorship bode ill for all of us.
The use of NATO armies to kill and maim women and children similarly breaks the rules of war. I know several soldiers who would not fight for such an unjust cause today and I am one of them. We had honour and laws but also the Geneva Convention.
Mercenaries bid for the highest pay and no morals of any kind govern their fighting but simply increased violence and the highest payer. Other ideologies like atheism and supposed “Human rights”- natural rights of existence stolen that are in my opinion God given.
When man and ideology replace God with Mammon or false religions and revisionist fantasy and lies, we observe the results around us. Christians are especially targeted by the “Exceptional” Wahabis and “Exceptional” Socialist Neo-cons. Those who live by the sword shall perish by it. Blessed are the peacemakers but damn the liars and warmongers to hell where they belong. Just pray that this perceived “Exceptionalism” of the Red-Green Alliance doesn’t send us all into the abyss. Stop playing “god” and realise Humanity is common to all of us- We all bleed and die the same whatever we are in ideological terms.