NEW CHINESE-RUSSIAN-IRANIAN ALLIANCE
|Most Important Ignored By American Media News Event|
Dr. Alexandr Nemets
Military ‘Gifts’ From Russia
The material in Chinese military books and journals witnesses the fact that China's military-technological potential is following the lead of this country's rapidly growing economic potential. In particular, the Iraqi war gave the PLA new incentives for accelerated modernization. The following are excerpts from some of this material (comments are in parentheses).
Xiandai Junshi (Modern Military) magazine, 2003, #6:
"Along with multiple achievements in the Iraqi war, American forces suffered some setbacks. Among the launched long-range cruise missiles, four units greatly missed targets inside Iraq, two units fell in Turkey, and several units fell in Saudi Arabia. "Now it is evident that electronic interference can influence the flight of these missiles. Particularly, Russian-made cheap interference devices, which spoil the positioning signals of American GPS systems, could be the major factor here. Research and development of interference devices spoiling the signals of GPS systems could become [for China] a trend in the development of weapons capable of opposing non-contact operational weapons.
"The recognition system of American precision-guided weapons is also imperfect. American and British military aircraft often made mistakes in differentiating between ‘our side’ and the enemy. Using ‘confusing fake and real’ methods against these recognition systems also attracted the attention of world military specialists [primarily Chinese]." (end of quote)
PLA experts understood: The Russian-made GPS spoiling device, which probably doesn't cost more than $1,000 per unit, could effectively take out of service Tomahawk cruise missiles costing more than $1 million. And have no doubts on this account: China will get them. Let's suppose, in the case of the Taiwan Strait crisis, that America sends to this zone two or three aircraft carriers equipped with hundreds of Tomahawk missiles. Suddenly most of these missiles, as well as precision-guided "smart" bombs used by U.S. bombers, appear to be ineffective. A newly built Chinese complex system of GPS interference drives these bombs and missiles away from important military and infrastructure targets. Russian assistance would allow China to accomplish this project rapidly and inexpensively.
Chinese Mobile ICBM
One more quotation, from the messages sent by international agencies from Moscow on Aug. 4:
"Rosoboronexport, the state-owned company responsible for up to 88 percent of all weapons sales, was due to sell $3.8 billion worth of arms this year. But with $2.7 billion clocked up in the first six months, that figure is likely to be exceeded by a big margin. If exports continue at their current pace, Moscow may this year match or even beat its post-Soviet record of the $4.8 billion registered in 2002." (end of quotation)
Around half of this quantity goes to China. In the event of a Taiwan Strait crisis – if Taiwan doesn't surrender in advance, scared by the Mainland’s might – the PLA will have more than enough modern fighters, submarines, air defense missile systems, cruise missiles, etc. That's in addition to electronic interference systems.
Several days ago the Beijing media announced that the first Chinese manned spacecraft will be launched in October. The project "921," initiated in January 1992, is close to successful completion; the share of Russian technology in this project is around 80 percent to 90 percent.
Does this mean that China, in October 2003, will reach the level of the USSR in April 1961, when the Soviet Union’s first manned spacecraft was launched? No, China will have reached the world level of the second half of the 1990s. By the way, is there anything in the Soviet/Russian space technology inventory, both in its "civilian" and military parts, still unused by China? Not much.
In the modern high-tech war, the sharing of space technology is on a steep rise. PLA knows this and reacts correspondingly.
In January-August 2003, several Chinese-Russian high-tech parks, or S&T centers, have been established in Shenyang city in Liaoning province, Zhenjiang city in Jiangsu province, Harbin city in Heilongjiang province, etc. The total number of these parks in China apparently surpasses 10. The environment for the transfer of military and dual-use technology from Russia to China is becoming even more beneficial.
Military-technological and Political ‘Gifts’ From Russia
The Russian defense industry, however, has some new clients. Let's quote the PLA magazine once again. Xiandai Junshi (Modern Military), #7, 2003:
"The Iraq war has been militarily won but politically lost.
"America launched the war against U.N. decisions; this caused the malcontent of many U.N. members. This war, strictly opposed by NATO members France, Germany and Belgium, caused the split of NATO. The Iraqi war resulted in the growth of contradictions between America and Arab countries.
In addition to NATO splitting and European problems of American policy, after the Iraqi war the leaders of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, etc., visited Moscow and signed agreements with Russia for military and weapons cooperation. Indeed, after the Iraqi war, a dramatic acceleration in military competition took place in the world.
Many countries are afraid of America’s unilateral course. This could cause the reorganization of world political forces and result in the formation of a new multi-polar political structure. American victory in Iraq is turning into the "two-edged sword." (end of quotation)
First, let’s look at Southeast Asia. Even before the Iraqi war, China, basing on its rapidly rising economic potential, dramatically increased its economic influence and, consequently, political influence in this region. After the Iraqi war, this region established strong military-technological ties with Russia, which increases Moscow’s political influence in this zone.
Eventually, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam entered the sphere of Chinese-Russian alliance control. Yes, this alliance still exists, it is gaining force and, indeed, is becoming a real base for "reorganization of world political forces and … formation of a new multi-polar political structure."
The increased Chinese and Russian economic and political contacts with Saudi Arabia, Iran, Cuba and North Korea complete the picture.
The "great conference" in Beijing on Aug. 27-29, which was supposed to solve North Korea’s nuclear weapons problem, failed to solve any problems at all. A lot of Western politicians are disappointed. These nice guys, once again, didn't take into account the strong ties of Moscow, Beijing and Pyongyang, as well as their "joint tricks."
And Iran is close to producing its first nuclear device. Have no doubts, Moscow and Beijing will defend Tehran from any possible American action.
Russia and Iran: Comrades in arms
By Sergei Blagov
MOSCOW - For those with cash to spend, Russia has a lot to offer besides crude oil and natural gas. Moscow and Tehran this week signed agreements for further supplies of Russian military equipment to Iran, to be worth US$300-400 million annually over several years.
Iranian Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani was due to leave Russia on Thursday after a four-day visit to formalize the arms accord that was outlined during Iranian President Mohammad Khatami's visit to Moscow in March.
On October 2, the defense ministers of Russia and Iran signed a framework agreement on military cooperation. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said that Russia would only provide Iran with "defensive" weapons, adding that such sales would not violate international agreements. The agreement is not directed against third countries, Shamkhani said. He also described Iran's relations with Russia as "historical and long-term". This week's meetings took on new significance in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.
Iran and Russia have expressed their willingness to help equip the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance forces, but both countries are concerned about the consequences of possible US strikes into Afghanistan. Iran has warned the US not to use its airspace for any attacks. "Today our cooperation is becoming more urgent. The situation prompts that," Interfax news agency quoted Shamkhani as saying.
Government officials are yet to divulge details of the upcoming deals, but sources and analysts say that they may include spare parts for Russian-made weapons, new fighter jets, and possibly air defense, ground-to-ground and anti-ship systems. Some Russian media outlets have speculated that Tehran is interested in acquiring long-range S-300 air defense missiles, and medium-range Buk M1 and Tor M1 air defense missiles.
Iranian military officials are also reportedly considering purchasing Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jets with a range of more than 3,000 kilometers, Iskander-E tactical ground-to-ground missiles with a range of nearly 300 kilometers, and 550 BMP-3 armored infantry vehicles.
Iran also would like to buy supersonic Mosquito and Yakhont anti-ship missiles. The Yakhont missiles have a range of 300 kilometers. The Mosquito missiles, manufactured at the Progress plant in Arseniyev, Primorie region, near the border with China, have a range of 120 kilometers. The missiles fly at altitudes below 10 meters and their designers claim that Russia previously sold them to both China and Vietnam. The delivery of the Mosquito missile system to China was a part of larger, $800 million deal to build two Sovremenny-class destroyers for the Chinese navy.
It has been speculated that the missiles could eventually be deployed in a conflict over the Spratly islands. Rich fishing grounds and the potential for gas and oil deposits have caused the Spratly archipelago to be claimed in its entirety by China, Taiwan and Vietnam, while portions are claimed by Malaysia and the Philippines. All five parties have occupied certain islands or reefs, and occasional clashes have occurred between Chinese and Vietnamese naval forces.
When it comes to armaments, Russian technology still sells. Apart from China, India has purchased submarines and frigates equipped with anti-ship missile systems.
Russian media outlets have speculated that Iran is keen to purchase anti-ship missile systems in order to control crucial sea routes in the Persian Gulf. However, Russian officials have dismissed these fears. "The arms supply agreement is not going to undermine the regional balance of forces." Ivanov was quoted as saying by the Russian Information Agency.
The latest commitment between Russia and Iran is contrary to a secret memorandum signed in 1995 by then US vice president Al Gore and then prime minister Viktor Chernomyrdin which obliged Russia to stop deliveries of weaponry systems to Iran by December 31, 2001, and to refrain from signing any new arms deals with the country.
Prior to the signing of this memorandum, Russia had delivered three Project 877 diesel submarines and eight MiG-29 fighters to Iran and sold a T-72 tank production license as part of a series of deals dating back to the 1980s.
Russian experts say that Iran may become Russia's third biggest arms buyer after China and India. Iran's ambassador to Moscow, Mehdi Safari, said in February that Russia could overall earn up to $7 billion in the next few years by resuming full-scale military cooperation with Iran.
*Iranian Stealth Missile Development
Moreover, Russian military experts indicate that Iran wants to use Russian defense equipment on its 1,000 kilometer border with Afghanistan. This would be used to help Iran stop the flow of narcotics from Afghanistan through its territory and limit the losses of Iranian border guards trying to block the drug trade. Russia's Interfax news agency quoted unidentified sources in the Russian Federal Border Guard Service as saying that Shamkhani had tentatively approved a draft to equip all of Iran's borders with Russian surveillance systems.
On Thursday, Shamkhani visited Russia's second largest city and major defense industry hub, St Petersburg. The Iranian minister was due to visit the Northern Warf shipbuilding plant, notably to inspect the so-called Project 20382 naval vessels, with an estimated price tag of $50 million each.
The Kremlin secured a number of deals when Iranian President Mohammad Khatami visited Russia in March, becoming the first Iranian leader in Moscow in 27 years. Khatami met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on March 12 and they signed a cooperation treaty, the first major accord clinched by the two countries since the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran.
The treaty did not make Russia and Iran strategic partners, but aimed at further strengthening partner-like, neighborly relations. The deal stipulates, among other things, that neither nation would allow its land to be used by "separatists" acting against the other nation.
On October 2, Shamkhani warned against what he described as a policy of double standards in the battle against terrorism. When Russia was targeted by terrorists recently, some countries supported them, he said, arguably referring to the United States.
During his Moscow visit Shamkhani also negotiated with Ivanov on how the oil and gas riches of the Caspian Sea should be shared. They avoided any direct reference to the United States in their comments, but indirectly opposed US policy in the Caspian Sea region.
The Caspian settlement "does not require the presence of non-littoral states", Shamkhani said. In response, Ivanov stated that the five littoral nations "do not need outside intermediaries" to settle their differences.
Russia and Iran will not recognize maritime borders in the Caspian until the sea's legal status is settled. The Caspian Sea is landlocked between Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan. Since the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Caspian Sea - as well as the region surrounding it - has became the focus of much international attention due to its huge oil and gas reserves. The Sea, which is 700 miles long, contains six separate hydrocarbon basins, and most of the oil and gas reserves in the Caspian Sea region have not yet been developed yet.
Economic relations between Russia and Iran are experiencing a revival. Annual trade turnover was just $200 million five years ago, while it reached $600 million last year, of which 90 percent comprised Russian exports to Iran.
However, Russia has long come under heavy criticism from the West for its help in building the Bushehr nuclear plant on Iran's Gulf coast. The US claims that the Russian technology could be used to develop nuclear weapons, but Moscow and Tehran argue that the plant will only be used for civilian purposes and will remain under international control.
Moscow has brushed off repeated US demands that it cancels the $800 million 1,000-megawatt light-water nuclear reactor project. The Kremlin has repeatedly argued that it is abiding by international agreements banning the proliferation of nuclear technologies.
Although the West now shares Russia and Iran's opposition to the Taliban's radicalism, it remains to be seen whether an emerging joint stance against international terrorism may silence Western criticism of Russia's arms sales to Iran.
(©2001 Asia Times Online Co, Ltd. All rights reserved. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for information on our sales and syndication policies.)
The Most Pleasant ‘Gifts’ From Russia
On Sept. 22, one of Moscow’s opposition papers published an article by Dr. Michail Delyagin, a recently resigned adviser to Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov. Dr. Delyagin is a very informed person, and some of his statements attract interest, particularly: "Russia, during the last several years, has been bathing in a ‘gold rain of oil dollars.’ However, none of Russia’s problems have been solved. ... Circumstances are for us. Americans are falling into one pool after another and help us this way. We are as lucky as only fools could be." (end of quote)
Definitely, America is "falling into one pool after another," and each time oil prices skyrocket. Russia effectively uses all the American mistakes; however, is Russia only "using" America’s mistakes – or also creating them? Is Moscow merely patiently waiting for America to fall into the pool or deliberately pushing America into it?
From September 2002 to March 2003, Russia did its best to delay the Iraqi war. And in March-April 2003, Moscow spared no effort to prevent Saddam’s defeat or at least to make the war last as long as possible. As a result, Moscow enjoyed one more "gold rain of oil dollars." In this case, Moscow definitely pushed America into the pool.
And what about 9/11? Are you sure, my readers, that Moscow had nothing to do with it? The author published many articles on this account, raised a lot of questions and didn't receive a a satisfactory answer for any of them.
Now President Bush intends to convince Russian President Putin to take part in Iraq’s "normalization and rebuilding." Let's suppose some Russian military units really do enter Iraq. How many FSB/KGB agents will they contain?
FSB/KGB had a lot of ties to Saddam’s circle. These ties could be activated and there will be one more pool for America to fall into. Moscow is not interested in Iraqi normalization, but only in high prices for oil.
San Francisco Chronicle
The Russia-China alliance
WITH THE END of the Cold War, the United States emerged as the only military and economic superpower. At the same time, four decades of enmity with the Soviet Union ended, creating an enemy gap that not even Saddam Hussein, North Korea or Colombia's drug traffickers have been able to fill.
Suddenly, that may be about to change.
President Bush's determination to fund and field a missile defense system has fueled growing resentment against the United States. Possibly in response, China and Russia -- both angered by U.S. domination of world affairs -- have signed a historic treaty of "friendship and cooperation." Although they deny it is a military alliance and swear it is not not aimed against the United States, it is clearly an attempt to establish a countervailing force against the unchallenged power this nation has enjoyed for the past 10 years.
The treaty ratifies each nation's most pressing foreign policy dispute with the United States. Russia, afraid of NATO expansion, gets China's opposition to the type of humanitarian interventions that occurred in the Balkans. China, outraged by U.S. sales of weapons to Taiwan, receives Russia's affirmation that the island is, in fact, an integral part of the mainland.
As part of the treaty, both nations have also denounced America's unilateral decision to abrogate the 1972 ABM treaty that outlawed the construction of a missile defense system.
In the long run, a multipolar world may end up creating less resentment and,
therefore, a safer and stronger system of international security.
For the moment, however, the United States has finally found a worthy enemy.
The Russia-China alliance can be used by Bush to justify the expense of a missile defense, new and advanced technology, and perhaps, even the militarization of outer space
L.A. WEEKLY: Are you arguing that the 3,000 civilians killed on September 11 somehow deserved their fate?
GORE VIDAL: I don't think we, the American people, deserved what happened. Nor do we deserve the sort of governments we have had over the last 40 years. Our governments have brought this upon us by their actions all over the world. I have a list in my new book that gives the reader some idea how busy we have been. Unfortunately, we only get disinformation from The New York Times and other official places. Americans have no idea of the extent of their government's mischief. The number of military strikes we have made unprovoked, against other countries, since 1947-48 is more than 250. These are major strikes everywhere from Panama to Iran. And it isn't even a complete list. It doesn't include places like Chile, as that was a CIA operation. I was only listing military attacks.
Americans are either not told about these things or are told we attacked them because . . . well . . . Noriega is the center of all world drug traffic and we have to get rid of him. So we kill some Panamanians in the process. Actually we killed quite a few. And we brought in our Air Force. Panama didn't have an air force. But it looked good to have our Air Force there, busy, blowing up buildings. Then we kidnap their leader, Noriega, a former CIA man who worked loyally for the United States. We arrest him. Try him in an American court that has no jurisdiction over him and lock him up -- nobody knows why. And that was supposed to end the drug trade because he had been demonized by The New York Times and the rest of the imperial press.
[The government] plays off [Americans'] relative innocence, or ignorance to be more precise. This is probably why geography has not really been taught since World War II -- to keep people in the dark as to where we are blowing things up. Because Enron wants to blow them up. Or Unocal, the great pipeline company, wants a war going some place.
And people in the countries who are recipients of our bombs get angry. The Afghans had nothing to do with what happened to our country on September 11. But Saudi Arabia did. It seems like Osama is involved, but we don't really know. I mean, when we went into Afghanistan to take over the place and blow it up, our commanding general was asked how long it was going to take to find Osama bin Laden. And the commanding general looked rather surprised and said, well, that's not why we are here.
Oh no? So what was all this about? It was about the Taliban being very, very bad people and that they treated women very badly, you see. They're not really into women's rights, and we here are very strong on women's rights; and we should be with Bush on that one because he's taking those burlap sacks off of women's heads. Well, that's not what it was about.
What it was really about -- and you won't get this anywhere at the moment -- is that this is an imperial grab for energy resources. Until now, the Persian Gulf has been our main source for imported oil. We went there, to Afghanistan, not to get Osama and wreak our vengeance. We went to Afghanistan partly because the Taliban -- whom we had installed at the time of the Russian occupation -- were getting too flaky and because Unocal, the California corporation, had made a deal with the Taliban for a pipeline to get the Caspian-area oil, which is the richest oil reserve on Earth. They wanted to get that oil by pipeline through Afghanistan to Pakistan to Karachi and from there to ship it off to China, which would be enormously profitable. Whichever big company could cash in would make a fortune. And you'll see that all these companies go back to Bush or Cheney or to Rumsfeld or someone else on the Gas and Oil Junta, which, along with the Pentagon, governs the United States.
We had planned to occupy Afghanistan in October, and Osama, or whoever it was who hit us in September, launched a pre-emptory strike. They knew we were coming. And this was a warning to throw us off guard.
With that background, it now becomes explicable why the first thing Bush did after we were hit was to get Senator Daschle and beg him not to hold an investigation of the sort any normal country would have done. When Pearl Harbor was struck, within 20 minutes the Senate and the House had a joint committee ready. Roosevelt beat them to it, because he knew why we had been hit, so he set up his own committee. But none of this was to come out, and it hasn't come out.
Still, even if one reads the chart of military interventions in your book and concludes that, indeed, the U.S. government is a "source of evil" -- to lift a phrase -- can't you conceive that there might be other forces of evil as well? Can't you imagine forces of religious obscurantism, for example, that act independently of us and might do bad things to us, just because they are also evil?
Oh yes. But you picked the wrong group. You picked one of the richest families in the world -- the bin Ladens. They are extremely close to the royal family of Saudi Arabia, which has conned us into acting as their bodyguard against their own people -- who are even more fundamentalist than they are. So we are dealing with a powerful entity if it is Osama.
What isn't true is that people like him just come out of the blue. You know, the average American thinks we just give away billions in foreign aid, when we are the lowest in foreign aid among developed countries. And most of what we give goes to Israel and a little bit to Egypt.
I was in Guatemala when the CIA was preparing its attack on the Arbenz government [in 1954]. Arbenz, who was a democratically elected president, mildly socialist. His state had no revenues; its biggest income maker was United Fruit Company. So Arbenz put the tiniest of taxes on bananas, and Henry Cabot Lodge got up in the Senate and said the Communists have taken over Guatemala and we must act. He got to Eisenhower, who sent in the CIA, and they overthrew the government. We installed a military dictator, and there's been nothing but bloodshed ever since.
Now, if I were a Guatemalan and I had the means to drop something on somebody in Washington, or anywhere Americans were, I would be tempted to do it. Especially if I had lost my entire family and seen my country blown to bits because United Fruit didn't want to pay taxes. Now, that's the way we operate. And that's why we got to be so hated.
You've spent decades bemoaning the erosion of civil liberties and the conversion of the U.S. from a republic into what you call an empire. Have the aftereffects of September 11, things like the USA Patriot bill, merely pushed us further down the road or are they, in fact, some sort of historic turning point?
The second law of thermodynamics always rules: Everything is always running down. And so is our Bill of Rights. The current junta in charge of our affairs, one not legally elected, but put in charge of us by the Supreme Court in the interests of the oil and gas and defense lobbies, have used first Oklahoma City and now September 11 to further erode things.
And when it comes to Oklahoma City and Tim McVeigh, well, he had his reasons as well to carry out his dirty deed. Millions of Americans agree with his general reasoning, though no one, I think, agrees with the value of blowing up children. But the American people, yes, they instinctively know when the government goes off the rails like it did at Waco and Ruby Ridge. No one has been elected president in the last 50 years unless he ran against the federal government. So, the government should get through its head that it is hated not only by foreigners whose countries we have wrecked, but also by Americans whose lives have been wrecked.
The whole Patriot movement in the U.S. was based on folks run off their family farms. Or had their parents or grandparents run off. We have millions of disaffected American citizens who do not like the way the place is run and see no place in it where they can prosper. They can be slaves. Or pick cotton. Or whatever the latest uncomfortable thing there is to do. But they are not going to have, as Richard Nixon said, "a piece of the action."
And yet Americans seem quite susceptible to a sort of jingoistic "enemy-of-the-month club" coming out of Washington. You say millions of Americans hate the federal government. But something like 75 percent of Americans say they support George W. Bush, especially on the issue of the war.
I hope you don't believe those figures. Don't you know how the polls are rigged? It's simple. After 9/11 the country was really shocked and terrified. [Bush] does a little war dance and talks about evil axis and all the countries he's going to go after. And how long it is all going to take, he says with a happy smile, because it means billions and trillions for the Pentagon and for his oil friends. And it means curtailing our liberties, so this is all very thrilling for him. He's right out there reacting, bombing Afghanistan. Well, he might as well have been bombing Denmark. Denmark had nothing to do with 9/11. And neither did Afghanistan, at least the Afghanis didn't.
So the question is still asked, are you standing tall with the president? Are you standing with him as he defends us?
Eventually, they will figure it out.
They being who? The American people?
Yeah, the American people. They are asked these quick questions. Do you approve of him? Oh yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh yeah, he blew up all those funny-sounding cities over there.
That doesn't mean they like him. Mark my words. He will leave office the most unpopular president in history. The junta has done too much wreckage.
They were suspiciously very ready with the Patriot Act as soon as we were hit. Ready to lift habeas corpus, due process, the attorney-client privilege. They were ready. Which means they have already got their police state. Just take a plane anywhere today and you are in the hands of an arbitrary police state.
Don't you want to have that kind of protection when you fly?
It's one thing to be careful, and we certainly want airplanes to be careful against terrorist attacks. But this is joy for them, for the federal government. Now they've got everybody, because everybody flies.
Let's pick away at one of your favorite bones, the American media. Some say they have done a better-than-usual job since 9/11. But I suspect you're not buying that?
No, I don't buy it. Part of the year I live in Italy. And I find out more about what's going on in the Middle East by reading the British, the French, even the Italian press. Everything here is slanted. I mean, to watch Bush doing his little war dance in Congress . . . about "evildoers" and this "axis of evil" -- Iran, Iraq and North Korea. I thought, he doesn't even know what the word axis means. Somebody just gave it to him. And the press didn't even call him on it. This is about as mindless a statement as you could make. Then he comes up with about a dozen other countries that might have "evil people" in them, who might commit "terrorist acts." What is a terrorist act? Whatever he thinks is a terrorist act. And we are going to go after them. Because we are good and they are evil. And we're "gonna git 'em."
Anybody who could get up and make that speech to the American people is not himself an idiot, but he's convinced we are idiots. And we are not idiots. We are cowed. Cowed by disinformation from the media, a skewed view of the world, and atrocious taxes that subsidize this permanent war machine. And we have no representation. Only the corporations are represented in Congress. That's why only 24 percent of the American people cast a vote for George W. Bush.
I know you'd hate to take this to the ad hominem level, but indulge me for a moment. What about George W. Bush, the man?
You mean George W. Bush, the cheerleader. That's the only thing he ever did of some note in his life. He had some involvement with a baseball team . . .
He owned it . . .
Yeah, he owned it, bought with other people's money. Oil people's money. So he's never really worked, and he shows very little capacity for learning. For them to put him up as president and for the Supreme Court to make sure that he won was as insulting as when his father, George Bush, appointed Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court -- done just to taunt the liberals. And then, when he picked Quayle for his vice president, that showed such contempt for the American people. This was someone as clearly unqualified as Bush Sr. was to be president. Because Bush Sr., as Richard Nixon said to a friend of mine when Bush was elected [imitating Nixon], "He's a lightweight, a complete lightweight, there's nothing there. He's a sort of person you appoint to things."
So the contempt for the American people has been made more vivid by the two Bushes than all of the presidents before them. Although many of them had the same contempt. But they were more clever about concealing it.
Should the U.S. just pack up its military from everywhere and go home?
Yes. With no exceptions. We are not the world's policeman. And we cannot even police the United States, except to steal money from the people and generally wreak havoc. The police are perceived quite often, and correctly, in most parts of the country as the enemy. I think it is time we roll back the empire -- it is doing no one any good. It has cost us trillions of dollars, which makes me feel it's going to fold on its own because there isn't going to be enough money left to run it.
You call yourself one of the last defenders of the American Republic against the American Empire. Do you have any allies left? I mean, we really don't have a credible opposition in this country, do we?
I sometimes feel like I am the last defender of the republic. There are plenty of legal minds who defend the Bill of Rights, but they don't seem very vigorous. I mean, after 9/11 there was silence as one after another of these draconian, really totalitarian laws were put in place.
So what's the way out of this? Back in the '80s you used to call for a new sort of populist constitutional convention. Do you still believe that's the fix?
Well, it's the least bloody. Because there will be trouble, and big trouble. The loons got together to get a balanced-budget amendment, and they got a majority of states to agree to a constitutional convention. Senator Sam Ervin, now dead, researched what would happen in such a convention, and apparently everything would be up for grabs. Once we the people are assembled, as the Constitution requires, we can do anything, we can throw out the whole executive, the judiciary, the Congress. We can put in a Tibetan lama. Or turn the country into one big Scientological clearing center.
And the liberals, of course, are the slowest and the stupidest, because they do not understand their interests. The right wing are the bad guys, but they know what they want -- everybody else's money. And they know they don't like blacks and they don't like minorities. And they like to screw everyone along the way.
But once you know what you want, you are in a stronger position than those who can only say, "Oh no, you mustn't do that." That we must have free speech. Free speech for what? To agree with The New York Times?
The liberals always say, "Oh my, if there is a constitutional convention, they will take away the Bill of Rights." But they have already done it! It is gone. Hardly any of it is left. So if they, the famous "they," would prove to be a majority of the American people and did not want a Bill of Rights, then I say, let's just get it over with. Let's just throw it out the window. If you don't want it, you won't have it. Stumble It!