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New Poland and global jihad - Zbigniew Brzezinski instead of Jan Sobieski !

Reader comment on item: Libyan Blues
in response to reader comment: Thanks for the reply

Submitted by Ianus (Poland), Sep 2, 2011 at 10:03

Dear Kepha Hor ,

Thanks a lot for your comments.

>1. I seriously doubt that the identity of the Libyan rebels was known to anyone in Washington.<

Won't you also suggest that the identity of the members of the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt was unknown to anyone in Washington as well , which led to Washington's "accidental" support for them? The then CIA director Leon Panetta managed to identify and kill with drones some 50 Al-Qaeda activists in Waziristan in a single month while he wasn't unable to find out who was organizing a mutiny in Eastern Libya ? Perhaps you have heard of other instances when the CIA/NATO used its might to support somebody without knowing anything who he was ?

Supposing what you say were true, then Panetta and all the CIA section responsible for North Africa/Libya should be fired for failing to do their most basic job, i.e. gather and analyze operative information from the region. True , Panetta stopped being the CIA director in July but not at all to be demoted.He became Secretery of Defense after another distinguished CIA director with pro-jihadist record and leanings Robert Gates had resigned.

>And, if you didn't notice, I always thought the Libyan intervention a huge and irrational mistake.<

I noticed it but I do contend that there is little evidence except the commentors' hopes and/or illusions to call it a "mistake". Quite the contrary, too much indicates it is a deliberate US policy.

> 2. Yes, China's economy may surpass the USA's in 5 years--but it has to be distributed over three times the population. It will have to meet a revolution of rising expectations--apparently already there, since there is a lot of labor unrest in the country.<

Do you understand what deep revolution in geopolitics China's economic predominance means? This will amount to the decline of America as the world's hegemon ". America's government will never allow it to happen. It won't leave the world stage as peacefully and quietly as the USSR did. Remember that it ushered in the American era with two nuclear blasts. It will close this era -and everything else- with many more blasts if it really comes to the push.

As to distribution of wealth I am afraid that you as a citizen of a country where 90% of income is concentrated among 10% of its population leaving 90% of people with 10% of national income should not give me sermons on social justice and rising expectations. Besides, the Chinese collective mentality is based on Confucian ethics which combined with communist ideology exerts strong restraints on what people expect and accept. It contrasts with America's hedonism which is as far as I know the ruling passion not just in the American oligarchic elites but in the broader public.

> And, it looks like it's also taking our American route of printing funny money.<

Or rather- as my impression is- collecting hyperinflated money printed by their most extravagant and powerful debtor. And it is understandable. If the American debtor collapses, China will be hit most hard.If you have invested so much in somebody who turns out to be a broke, you will be forced willy nilly to do your best to keep him afloat as long as possible. Otherwise you will be badly damaged as well.

> Still, it did learn some home lessons from the days when most people's vitamins (vegetables and the occasional scrap of meat or fish) was purchased on the black market, which in turn was fed by stealing the produce of communized agriculture.<

These days of Mao's great leap forwards with sparrow hunting and his erratic cultural revolution and paper tigers are gone. Today China is the first manufacturer and the first exporter in the world. Its growth rates between 5-15% per year are incredible and - for what I like it most - China - the country once brought on the verge of destruction by opium - have no drug problem at all. Unlike many of the so called "democracies" in Chinese schools children are taught discipline, respect for learning and hard work. We could learn much from China .

> 3. The record of US support for jihad--well, it began when Carter belatedly recognized that Brezhnev wasn't going to give the US respite when Brezhnev saw that the US was calling it quits in the Cold War.<

It's an interesting question when exactly the US-jihadist honeymoon began? Was it during the conversation between ibn Saud and Roosevelt in February 1945? Or during the hectic US efforts that demanded many ideological and cultural concessions to create an Islamic cordon sanitaire around the Southern Soviet borders ? Or in 1973-74 when the unholy US-Saudi alliance came into being whereby the Saudis agreed to sell cheap oil to America in exchange for US protection for the ruling ibn Saud despotism and its agenda? Or in 1974 when the US gave a free hand to the Turks to destroy,rape and Islamize Northern Cyprus which as a result of the US-Turkish jihad lost entirely its 5000 year-old past, its 500 churches and monasteries and was made into a land of mosques, imams and Quranic schools or dar al-Islam ? Or as you suggest in 1979 long before the Soviet entry in Afghanistan when the CIA fomented jihadist rebellions to draw in the USSR into a Vietnam-like quagmire? Be as it may, the fact of the mutually advantageous American-jihadist alliance remains obvious and irrefutable even though much has been done to keep it in the dark or play it down.

> 5. The part of the former Socialist world with which I am most familiar also had WONDERFUL free medical care, praised by every major newspaper from Los Angeles to West Berlin (at least back in the 1970's)--and it featured care for the average person administered by someone who could barely read and write, administer a shot of fructose, and, if you were really lucky, he'd get a bunch of people together to chant political slogans while The Chairman's thaumaturgic red book lay on your afflicted part (although a Christian, I am similarly sceptical of Pentecostal claims).<

Apparently, we have got different experiences. I remember the time when every school in Poland had a professional dentist and a nurse; when people were freely and regularly examined for lung and epidemic diseases; when Medical Emergency Service was available in most towns, when old people were not dumped and left to die as they are now that doctors are just undeclared ancillary officials of the Ministry of Finance which initiates so called "reforms" of the health care system to ruin the system and its patients. In short I remember the time when the state wasn't controlled by a handful of self-serving political thieves and fat egoistic oligarchs surrounded by lazy and corrupt bureaucracy they created on an unprecedented scale even under socialism, but for the first time in our history the state tried to serve the majority of its people and their needs.

And I assure you there is hardly a bigger contrast between today's neoliberal regime that has made us a sick and dying society (and itself super-rich in the process) , and the old socialist regime which with all its shortcomings had no beggars in the streets and no demographic and cultural regress that started with the so called "reforms" , i.e. stealing state property on mass scale , in 1989.

> 7. Being, at present, a minion of one of America's socialist organs (the public school system), I assure you you didn't have free education anywhere.<

As I am afraid that someone living in a country which makes 10% of its population hold 90% of the nation's income should rather exert more restrain in telling me where socialism is to be looked for.

> I doubt that the people who taught you math, science, and Leninist theory in the old Poland made do with no salary, and the money to pay them--even if in ration tickets-- had to come from somewhere.<

Imagine that those people I will always remember with deep gratitude taught me also Adam Smith's theory,John Mill, classics and many more things which I haven't seen later in the so called West. Imagine,besides, that having no super-rich parasitic class greatly contributes to the emergence and resilience of a class which is the backbone of every civilized and sound country - the middle class. Imagine further that education for which you have to pay easily degenerates into its opposite - a commercial enterprise with sad results of ignorance . I know enough rich ignoramuses who have bought their diplomas and certificates. I have met also headmasters who would never pluck up courage to tell the truth in public not to antagonize paying parent.They would rather fire a teacher who doesn't praise and give good grades to a lazy and silly student whose parents pay good money to the school.

> My main point is that you impute to America an influence over the global jihad which it simply doesn't have. Taking the Sherki Turkestan crowd, for example, I doubt the US Government has three employees who can read Tarim Basin Turki ("Uyghur" is badly educate guess imposed by the Great Father of the Peoples).<

If by "influence" you mean control, I will agree.Jihad has its own agenda which doesn't have to overlap with the agenda of a ruling clique in the White House. If however influence is reduced to the ability to arouse and use jihad to beat a chosen enemy, I must disagree. Afghanistan showed that in this sense the US has been the main influence on worldwide jihadism. Without the US assistance Afghan jihad would have ended like the basmachi jihad movement in Soviet Central Asia did in the early 20-ies.

As to difficulties in Uyghur dialect the US can always rely on its Turkish friends and their expertise. After all every time they riot and kill the Chinese "shaitans" the Uyghurs jihadists submit their calls for help to the embassy of Turkey which with its Pan-Turkic agenda pretends to be the selfless defender of all "oppresed" Turkic nations .

> As for China, I know it too well to be grateful for its purchasing our debt--and you won't get any argument from me that our American elites have been horribly irresponsible over the past 3/4 of a century. We Americans should've noticed a lot sooner that we had reached Aristotle's point where polity becomes "democracy"--the have-not majority recognizes that it has the political power to vote the minority's money into its collective pockets.<

Frankly, I don't understand your point. America is not a democracy but an oligarchy and a few social laws passed in spite of that don't change anything in the general picture or in the fact that its wealth and income distribution it typicl of a third world country.

I'd like to refer you again to the excellent study by Prof. William M. Domhoff "Who rules America. Wealth, income, and power". Just let me quote a few passages to show some basic things you like most Americans seem not to have come across yet :

"In the United States, wealth is highly concentrated in a relatively few hands. As of 2007, the top 1% of households (the upper class) owned 34.6% of all privately held wealth, and the next 19% (the managerial, professional, and small business stratum) had 50.5%, which means that just 20% of the people owned a remarkable 85%, leaving only 15% of the wealth for the bottom 80% (wage and salary workers).In terms of financial wealth (total net worth minus the value of one's home), the top 1% of households had an even greater share: 42.7%. (...)

In terms of types of financial wealth, the top one percent of households have 38.3% of all privately held stock, 60.6% of financial securities, and 62.4% of business equity. The top 10% have 80% to 90% of stocks, bonds, trust funds, and business equity, and over 75% of non-home real estate. Since financial wealth is what counts as far as the control of income-producing assets, we can say that just 10% of the people own the United States of America.

Now what is for me the most extraordinary thing about America - general ignorance of Americans as the social realities around them :

"... a recent study (...)show(s) that most Americans (high income or low income, female or male, young or old, Republican or Democrat) have no idea just how concentrated the wealth distribution actually is.

A remarkable study (Norton & Ariely, 2010) reveals that Americans have no idea that the wealth distribution (...) is as concentrated as it is. When shown three pie charts representing possible wealth distributions, 90% or more of the 5,522 respondents -- whatever their gender, age, income level, or party affiliation -- thought that the American wealth distribution most resembled one in which the top 20% has about 60% of the wealth. In fact, of course, the top 20% control about 85% of the wealth ...

Even more striking, they did not come close on the amount of wealth held by the bottom 40% of the population. It's a number I haven't even mentioned so far, and it's shocking: the lowest two quintiles hold just 0.3% of the wealth in the United States. Most people in the survey guessed the figure to be between 8% and 10%, and two dozen academic economists got it wrong too, by guessing about 2% -- seven times too high. Those surveyed did have it about right for what the 20% in the middle have; it's at the top and the bottom that they don't have any idea of what's going on.

Americans from all walks of life were also united in their vision of what the "ideal" wealth distribution would be, which may come as an even bigger surprise than their shared misinformation on the actual wealth distribution. They said that the ideal wealth distribution would be one in which the top 20% owned between 30 and 40 percent of the privately held wealth, which is a far cry from the 85 percent that the top 20% actually own. They also said that the bottom 40% -- that's 120 million Americans -- should have between 25% and 30%, not the mere 8% to 10% they thought this group had, and far above the 0.3% they actually had. In fact, there's no country in the world that has a wealth distribution close to what Americans think is ideal when it comes to fairness. So maybe Americans are much more egalitarian than most of them realize about each other, at least in principle and before the rat race begins."

What can I say about that? Ignorance is bliss and an American can assume a pose of a preacher on social justice, equality, democracy and human rights only because he takes his bliss and his dreams for reality. And perhaps our sad reality doesn't change so much because there are too many dreamers and too few realists ?

> You guessed right that I am not descended from Polish nobility. I am, however, related to small farmers who handled marginal land on the periphery of a great Old World emperor, as well as to a long line of petty bourgeoisie and wanderers as well. However, the lives of High-level Cadre and their children in places I've seen is perhaps as close as I've ever seen to a class that can live off the sweat of serfs.<

Well, I'd say that there is a big difference between the real serf-owners who had all laws on their side to live off and abuse serfs with impunity and a system with tight controls. You can live off their work but woe to you if you happened to abuse your position.

Frankly, today's "nouveaux riches' and neoliberal elites seem to be much worse than the High-Level cadres in China. They will show you they don't need you even as a serf. They have invented a better option for you - death . That's why we in Eastern Europe have been all dying societies since this rapacious neoliberalism took office more than 20 year ago. Just compare the demographic statistics and statistics on poverty here to see what I mean.For me beggars in the streets and the homeless I have seen are the best indicator of what social system is in the making.

> And, again, as for the global jihad, may it soon meet its Jan Sobieski.<

I hope it as well. Alas, in the meantime instead of its Jan Sobieski it has met its Zbigniew Brzezinski. It's how low we Poles have sunk , you see ! ;(

Best regards,

Ianus

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