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Noam Chomsky’s contribution to understanding America as a falling star – Hanne Nabintu Herland, Herland Report

Noam Chomsky’s contribution to understanding America as a falling star – Hanne Nabintu Herland, Herland Report

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Noam Chomsky, one of America’s leading intellectuals and a highly cited researcher, has advanced a depressing image of the USA as a nation that has evolved into a major cause of terror. For some time Chomsky has argued that the USA is not a democracy. It is in fact a one-party state – an oligarchy where elites govern on behalf of, and often contrary to, the interests of the general population. The article was first published in Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet, 2014.

A recent study from Princeton University arrives at the same conclusion. Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page analyzed the evolution of the USA in recent decades from a democracy based on the collective will of all voters to an oligarchy, administered by wealthy elites from both left-wing and right-wing parties in remarkable accord.

Chomsky´s latest statements describing the United States as a cause of terror are particularly relevant considering the failure of foreign policy in the Middle East in recent years and the current escalation in the ominous direction of a new Cold War.

We are currently republishing a number of articles by Hanne Nabintu Herland that were printed in Scandinavian newspapers between 2010-2015.  This article is from 2014. 

 

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About The Author

Hanne Nabintu Herland is a bestselling historian of religions and author, founder and host of The Herland Report, known from the media for fearless speech and stern criticism of political correctness.
She states that our democracies have been taken over by an extreme-liberal elite that no longer listens to the voice of the people. Her new book, The Culture War. How the West lost its Greatness, is available all over the USA and in 60 countries world wide. www.theherlandreport.com

The classic political division between right-wing and left-wing is increasingly diffuse. The USA we once knew —  with Marshall aid, civil rights and emphasis on freedom of the individual — languishes in an apparent state of torpor.

Chomsky recently published a scathing critique in Truthout, where he referred to the CIA’s review of covert operations in the USA. The major point in his critique concerned USA´s interference in the internal affairs of other nations and the concomitant  destabilization and humanitarian tragedies.

In an article dated October 15th the New York Times  also cited the CIA report and provided further details on the Obama administration’s conclusion that the general lack of success associated with covert operations in countries like Cuba, Angola, South Africa, Nicaragua dictated a rethink of the whole strategy. In this context the newspaper expressed skepticism towards the ongoing support of Syrian rebels.

One of Chomsky’s major points is that the character of NATO has changed dramatically. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union NATO has gone from being a European defense alliance to being a USA-led intervention force and aggression power with the intention to dominate the world’s oil and gas industry.

Chomsky´s latest statements describing the United States as a cause of terror are particularly relevant considering the failure of foreign policy in the Middle East in recent years and the current escalation in the ominous direction of a new Cold War.

The attacks against ISIS are primarily unconstitutional, according to Yale professor Bruce Ackerman, but they are also in direct opposition to the wishes of the American population since Public Policy Polling indicates that 74% are against more war involvement. A disturbing lack of respect for the sovereignty of nations is also evident.

For example, the USA´s attack within Syria occurred without any dialog whatsoever with the Syrian government. Groups like ISIS must of course be opposed, but it is a paradox that such terrorist factions use both American weapons and vehicles. According to international media, when ISIS operated in Syria in the struggle against President Bashar al-Assad, they received support from the USA as well as training from Americans in Jordan.

Ever since the beginning of the conflict Syrians have maintained that the war was a result of the invasion of Syria by heavily armed Sunni extremist groups following the war in Libya

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The USA´s invasion of Iraq upset the balance of power and gave Shiite groups control of the government. Unfortunately these same Shiite groups were responsible for atrocities committed against Sunni Muslims. USA cannot claim that they were unaware of this potentially destructive situation. Already in a 1994 interview George Bush´s Vice President, Dick Cheney, described the dangers of disturbing the balance of power between factions in Iraq.

According to CNN Obama claims that the fight against Sunni ISIS is moving too slowly because Assad – the enemy of ISIS — has not yet been defeated. This sends new contradictory, confused signals warning of further destabilization in this already multi-dimensional regional war — a war that is the worst humanitarian disaster since World War II.

Long time foreign minister and head of the World Bank, Robert McNamara pointed out in his book The fog of war that USA participation in civil wars through unilateral support to one party is precisely the strategy that has made conflict resolution impossible.

Henry Kissinger appears to share this concern. In Kissinger´s latest book, World Order, he  points out that American politics have been mesmerized by an ideological belief that “the introduction of democracy and human rights” would solve the Middle East’s challenges.

Without respect for realities on the ground, the USA engaged in an idealistic crusade. The result of the USA´s contribution to regime changes in countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Egypt and Syria is that situations have actually deteriorated.

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Ignoring the fact that democracy as a form of governance developed in the West over hundreds of years, the West has attempted to establish democracy in other regions “over night” using military force. Kissinger calls for a reorientation towards political realism and national sovereignty as a premise for a re-stabilizing recent threats to world peace.

It is a significant paradox that USA with its democratic idealism receives far less respect in the Middle East today than the more reality-oriented policies of Russian Vladimir Putin, for two consecutive years named by Forbes Magazine as the world’s most powerful man. It is a similar paradox that Western media so poorly communicate pluralistic realities that exist in many countries outside the West. Here there is a lot to learn about others – understandings that could lead to more peace. The Western dream of unrealistic democratic ideals might be precisely what leads the world into new major conflicts.

The danger that the previously so democratic USA could develop into an autocratic military government that does not respect regulations concerning the relationships between independent states has troubled leading thinkers for many years. President Eisenhower’s speech from 1961 is persuasive. In many ways he emphasized that a strong increase of military influence on politics poses a particular threat to democracy in the USA.

Eisenhower´s warning to never allow this potentially catastrophic combination threaten American liberties or democratic processes is frightening to consider today, especially as it appears that precisely what he feared has actually happened. To the extent that the USA is heading in the direction of an autocratic form of government, there is good reason in Europe not to follow their example.

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3 comments

  1. Cedric M Kuhlenthal

    Dear Hanne

    I have just watched in awe, your interview by Oksana on RT.

    I am not a politician, just a man who tries to live a godly life in this destructive society, but you, were like I imagined Esther standing before the Persian king.

    Please never give up, you are an inspiration to any person who believes in integrity, respect and tolerance of all seeking peace.

    May God bless and protect you,
    Love
    Cedric

  2. I just saw Hanne on Worlds Apart, on RT. Wow! Missed the first bit, so I’ll watch again to get the full interview.
    I couldn’t agree more with what you are saying. I hope you remain in touch with RT and appear there again.

    I’m probably a bit more left/socialist than Hanne, but in the traditional way – not the fanatical feminism/hysterical multiculturalism and generally politically correct way that seems to be the norm now. At the moment I am mourning the death of an equal society in Sweden.

    PLEASE HANNE, write something about Sweden. The media censorship of the immigration debate, the death of Christianity, the radical feminism that’s even alienating normal women etc. If you think Norway is mad, in Sweden it’s gone much further.

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