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Neil: "Let's hope". Yep! As we have seen, the elites are busting guts to ensure that Brexit does not happen. Whether it is not invoking Article 50, a "soft Brexit" which is no Brexit at all, a second referendum, parliament voting down whatever is agreed by the Brexit negotiators and submitting to the people a second referendum which they just may win, whether or not Scotland has seceded, the elites think they've got this sewn up. A neoliberal stitch-up is being orchestrated right in front of our eyes, and they're shameless open about it all! None of this bodes well. If there is a neolberal political and corporate stitch-up, there will be political and social violence as well as a UKIP rout of the industrial wastelands. The only thing that can ensure a Brexit is a leftwing Labour Party, but the Blairite zombies are doing everything in their power to destroy the natural leftwing anti-EU and anti-neoliberal that the party leans towards. If the Blairite zombies win this battle, UKIP sweeps the board, unless the leftists in the Labour Party themselves split and taking the whole base with them and leave the Blairite zombies to their own devices. I suspect the leftists in the Labour Party will surrender to the zombies. I hope I'm wrong. As much as I detest the Labour Party, it may be the only thing that will stop a huge UKIP presence in parliament in 2020, and, heaven help us, Prime Minister Nigel Farage by 2025. Having dedicated over forty years to an EU superstate, the idea that the EUphiles are going to meekly accept the will of the people is not credible. They'll pull out every stop you can imagine and then some. The vote itself was always but the first battle in a very long war.
Having dedicated over forty years to an EU superstate, the idea that the EUphiles are going to meekly accept the will of the people is not credible. They'll pull out every stop you can imagine and then some. The vote itself was always but the first battle in a very long war. The stakes involves are yuuge!. Multiple trillions of $ and ultimately world domination. This is what the Great Game is about and Europe is clawing its way back after blowing itself up in WWII and handing it to the US.The UK is going to have to decide with whom to cast in, the Europeans (Germans) or the US (Five Eyes).
Tom, what you say is almost right, but I would add what I think you said elsewhere, which solves the puzzle. The UK is the Trojan horse for US interests, hence the US reaction of despair and discombobulation. The US and UK push to expand the EU to the former communist states was meant to weaken Germany and its axis, for lack of a better word. This hasn't worked in the way it was supposed to, and the Germans are taking the opportunity to reshape the EU in its interests, not Washington's. It's a very high risk move by Berlin, given that the EZ and EU might implode, but they think they can pull it off. Turkey was meant to further weaken Germany's influence, but Berlin has turned the game on its head. If we can figure this stuff out (and it isn't that hard to do), then the great power centres of the world understand this in microscopic detail and have planned every scenario. The most amusing part of Brexit has been all the neoconservative "Atlanticists" advocating leaving the EU! These putrid loony tunes ordinarily don't eat, shit or breathe unless their masters in Washington have given permission. But out of the blue the putrid loony tunes get a sudden dose of independent mindedness. This isn't a case of a bloody nose. This is more like a broken jaw. Hooray for the psychopathic neoconservatives! What the hell were they thinking? Someone really has to explain to Trump that Brexit is not a "great thing" for someone seeking to be president. The State Department and the Pentagon must be freaking out at the possibility of Trump in the Oval Office! Trump obviously doesn't understand what is pompously called "grand strategy" or to mere mortals, as you say Tom, "world domination". It is self-evidently not a "great thing" to watch one of your most important pieces on a board being removed from its position of blocking another powerful player. And this is the same Trump who bombastically and haughtily criticises the foreign policy planners who don't know how to win! The foreign policy planners must be looking at each other and crying: "Holy fuck, this fucking retard could be the next president!" Kennan, Ball et al must be spinning in their graves. Its time for the State Department's and Pentagon's planners to send Trump books by Kennan, Ball, and Brzezinski, to name but a few. Watch how the elites scurry over to the Clinton camp now that it is abundantly clear that Trump is a nut! Scurry, scurry, scurry...
Great observations, John.If Trump wins, his first hours sitting in the hot seat in the Oval Office are going to be interesting as they explain the chessboard to him. But once Trump gets the nomination, if he does, then he will be getting intel briefings, so he won't be a total newbie. But the learning curve will be steep for him, since he seems to know nothing about this area. I think he just intends to farm it out to his team at this point, with the option as honcho to fire anyone on the spot if they don't perform. So who he picks as his team is going to be really important. Obama did pretty much the same thing through, handing it over to the secretary of state, Samantha Power, Susan Rice, and NSA/CIA, but retaining a veto.As you say, if we can figure out the outlines at least, the deep states of the world's great powers have it gamed in micro-detail with all the contingencies they can imagine.That's just what those folks do and why the game goes on.There are basically two choices in international relations (IR), geopolitics and geostrategy, which choice determines tactics. The first is balance of power, which is inherently unstable and no one has control of it, so a lot of uncertainty is involved that can't be gamed as risk. The other is global hegemony, which the US chose after the collapse of the USSR. But this means suppressing even the possibility of some credible challenger arising. The alternative is chaos and conflict.For those of you out there thinking WTF?, this is just the way things work at the level of foreign and military policy. There are different schools and various debates in IR, but this is the field of play of the world game, in which we are just pawns.
The EU won't work without political and fiscal union, but there is not enough backup from the population for this. We would need pan-European elections and common decision making, instead of the current level of indirection through national parties and unelected bureaucrats. "No taxation without representation", is the old issue which is breaking apart the EU. In a broad sense of 'taxation', understanding taxation as the power of decision-making to shape national policy and interests.If Germany is not interested in pushing this forward, then the EU has no more legs. And as things get worse and worse, the national tensions push the other way around. I haven't seen a real push by European politicians to push the EU in this direction, instead of extending and pretending the status quo can continue with minor changes here and there.
View from Trump: "NATO obsolete if you are not going to use it for its stated purpose..."now NATO starting to get it:https://youtu.be/duPQxXJdYYI
PS Trump keeps saying "they have not paid their fair share..."Maybe he is thinking about a USD clawback ????
Ignacio: "If Germany is not interested in pushing this forward, then the EU has no more legs. And as things get worse and worse, the national tensions push the other way around. "That's the essential point. Germany has pushed and achieved almost all its aims. The periphery has been disciplined, including the former communist states. There is no chance of Turkey joining without submitting totally to Germany. And where is hasn't pushed for a certain outcome, Germany has gotten lucky: the UK Trojan horse has willingly taken its pieces off the chessboard and may never find a way to return to the game. The ECB can end the crisis overnight. It only takes the elites in Germany to make the decision, and they're going to have to make it very soon otherwise the EZ and the wider EU will collapse. Germany's policy elites understand all too well that they can't play this game much longer or all will be lost. The question is how long before Germany cashes in its chips? If they continue playing much longer, someone will burn down the house. I expect some sort of fiscal union could be arranged pretty quickly, and the people of Europe would in all likelihood go along with it.
Matt: "NATO obsolete if you are not going to use it for its stated purpose..."Proving yet again that he doesn't understand "geopolitics" and "geostrategy". But what is Nato's purpose? It's purpose it to encircle Russia and China, halt the rise of any possible rivals and ensuring another "American century". It's doing just that. That proves it is effective! The thing is that it's clear from Trump's many pronouncements on this stuff, he just doesn't get any of it. NONE OF IT!!! If he ever makes it to the Oval Office, the State Department and Pentagon are going to lock him in a room, with Seal Team Six on the door, and take it in turn to pound it into his skull, day and night, until he does get it. This is the kind of rhetoric and policy you expect from Jill Stein, Ralph Nader and even Ron Paul, but then they have no chance of making it to the White House. Peaceniks do not and cannot make it to the imperial throne room, otherwise known as the Oval Office. Matt: "they have not paid their fair share..."That's true, but irrelevant. Who sets fire to their home because the kids take out the garbage and mow the lawn? He's thinking like a businessman, and a petty, penny-pinching one at that, not a geostrategist in control of the most powerful country the world has ever seen. As Tom says, perhaps he'll just have to delegate the entire foreign policy brief to people who understand it. Putin, Xi Jinping and Merkel must be licking their lips in anticipation that such an incompetent may get the top job. Fate has a way of dishing out delicious ironies: he may go down as the best example of an incompetent who "doesn't know how to win". It'll be the foreign policy equivalent of all those deficiterians who demand government surplus are run every year, and then are totally baffled when there's a recession. What Dubya started, Trump may just finish: the dismantling of US hegemonic power. The EU has plans for an EU army. A competent (as opposed to a rational and peaceful) president would be endeavouring to stop this and further increase Nato's relevance and power, not gripe about how they're being shortchanged by Belgium and further accelerate the end of Nato.
NATO is a waste of money and its aggressive posturing threatens to spark a nuclear war. Get rid of it. Get rid of the war-mongering Neoconservatives. Those are the objectives Trump needs to understand and act upon.What Dubya started, Trump may just finish: the dismantling of US hegemonic power. The EU has plans for an EU army.Good. Dismantle it before these reckless "geostrategists" destroy the world.I can't wait to see what an EU army looks like.
Germany can't have another army as it did leading up to WWI and WWII, but it can politically control a EU army.
Bob, Trump has come to the right conclusion but for the wrong reason: he thinks the US is being shortchanged by other Nato members. The US military-industrial complex won't mind taking up any slack, but what the US wants is for all Nato members to do as they're told, like spend 2% of GDP on the military and take orders from Washington. Will Trump ever figure this stuff out? Possibly, if he can learn that a government is not a business and leave all his "art of the deal" gibberish where it belongs, in the boardroom. If he ever gets to the White House, he'll soon learn that all the naive shit he says is just that, and will not be tolerated by the huge power interests. He'll come on board, and when he finally figures this stuff out he'll probably end up either being pretty damn good at it or so reckless and cocky that he plays into the numerous German, Japanese, Russian, Chines, Iranian traps that have been set. Tom, quite right, and it seems they're ratcheting up the pressure for an EU army. And that can't be done without fiscal and further political union. Germany will therefore end the crisis at the same time as moving towards fiscal and political union, which means rule from Berlin. Then comes the EU army. Nato is then in deep trouble, which means near annihilation of US power in Europe. Germany is making its move. You have to wonder, though, whether an EU army is more to do with weakening the US or to do with a willingness to deploy troops around the world. Of course you can't do the latter without the former, but an EU army controlled from Berlin will leave a bad taste in many mouths. Game of Thrones has nothing on these political manoeuvrings! Typo: "Who sets fire to their home because the kids take out the garbage and mow the lawn?"Should of course be ...because the kids DON'T take out the garbage...
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