ISIS

 

Pundits are loudly pandering to political and highly publicized pleas for American leadership in dealing with the cancer of our own creation which is ISIS.  They wring their hands and pull their payots searching for a solution, or rather a pretense which can be sold to the public for their preconceived plans.  Forgive the overdone alliteration, but the pulling back of the curtain revealing the wizard sets my tongue aflutter, stuck on consonants which freely, and obstreperously, phonetically emphasize the obvious.  What is occurring in the middle east was planned.  The prescription is prepared.  What is yet lacking is the propaganda which will sell the solution to the public.

 

The rise of ISIS, a name appropriately associated with the goddess of darkness and chaos[1], began with covert US assistance to the rebels fighting Assad.[2]  Of course, one could digress to US assistance to the Mujahideen in Afghanistan,[3] where Brzezinsky stated “…your cause is right, and God is on your side.”  Suffice it to say that we, by our policies and actions, either intentionally or unintentionally, created the ISIS spectre.[4]  Senator McCain assured us that we could tell the good guys from the bad guys.  After all, he met with them, as well as had photo-ops with the friendly jihadis.[5]  A perhaps more revealing account is detailed in Seymore Hershe’s “The Red Line and the Rat Line.[6]  The ruse of the reluctant combatant is given play by MSM reports of in fighting in the administration over rebel assistance[7], all the while it was proceeding apace.  ISIS then morphs into the great I AM, changing its name to IS.  The symbolism is astounding and quite disturbing. 

 

What we need is clarity and truth, a difficult prescription to deliver when your future depends on subterfuge and deception.  Let’s just admit the obvious.  Our current economic system is under attack.  Its demise will have great ramifications for our economy and our way of life.  We are in an expanded field of war which crosses the lines of diplomatic, informational, military, and economic lines of action.  These are all intertwined and must be dealt with concurrently.  Like it or not, international politics is still a zero sum game. 

 

Energy access and strategic access remain critical strategic goals.  The world remains dependent on petrochemicals, and their availability and accessibility to world markets, unrestrained by sovereign political considerations, continues to be important.  It’s not that the United States must have access to these resources, but rather that the world economy have its access.  Additionally, the international economic system, with the dollar as the reserve currency, is predicated on the sale of this important and other commodities in dollars.  Remove this structure precipitously, and the US economy implodes, and with it the world economy.  Use of energy resources in power politics takes a gamble for uncertain sovereign gain at high international risk.  Preventing such moves is in both our national interest and the community of nation’s interest.

 

Strategic access permits freedom of movement to address instabilities impacting commerce and peaceful economic activity.  When such access exceeds these ends and seeks rather to exert hegemony, such as seems to be the case of US demonstrations in the bears backyard, negative reactions are sure to follow.  We should not be surprised, nor should we precipitously, or worse, deviously invent a reason to war based on social media posts.[8]  Let’s be clear.  Ukraine is a strategic energy access node both in terms of its own, perhaps unproven, deposits as well as its infrastructure.  We seek an alternative to a near monopoly on the provision of energy to Europe and its use in power politics. 

 

A similar current runs through the situation in the Middle East, which “swims on a sea of oil.”[9]  Face it.  The world economy depends on energy access.  New extractive technologies have made a substantial difference, but the cost differentials of extraction remain significant.  As Allan Greenspan stated, “I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.”[10]  Likewise, our current activities reflect this calculus.  ISIS not only was instrumental in destabilizing Assad, it also destabilized Iraq through which the Iran-Iraq-Syria (Islamic) pipeline was planned,[11] a pipeline which would sell its product outside of the dollar reserve system.[12]  We now have an opportunity, nefarious or not though its origin may have been, to realize our objectives; energy access, strategic access, and thereby the peace, stability, and prosperity which free, non-politicized economic activity can bring, if we are able to explain such realities, justify our actions in achieving them, clearly articulate them, forcefully execute a strategy to achieve them, and truly believe in and support these benevolent ends.     

 

Charlie Rose recently interviewed Tom Friedman and Ryan Crocker in which both opined about the need for action and in which neither elucidated the crux of the issues.  Has our polity and our press degraded to such an extent that we cannot, dare not, talk about the real issues?  Our economic system is under attack.  Our worldview is under attack.  Should we act in Syria?  Hell yes!  The question is how is this explained to the electorate.  The answer – honestly, transparently, forcefully, and quickly.