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Theses on the United States

Theses on the United States

The U.S. has entered a new phase with the Congress Assault on January 6th. In order to better understand what is going on in the U.S., we first need to examine the process the world has entered. Following this examination, we can present our predictions concerning the future.

Let us discuss the issues in the format of theses.

1. Thesis: The end of the liberal-globalist system

The world is arriving to the end of the liberal-globalist system as the coronavirus pandemic also has shown. And we observe the failure of this system at foremost on the following three points:

Firstly the era of “let them do, let them pass”, in other words the politics of laisser faire is over.  In the fight against the pandemic, the countries, in which the state has influence on the economy, have achieved success. Those countries that are under full dominance of liberalism meanwhile were forced to regress back to central government intervention.

To state it more clearly: facing the coronavirus, the governments themselves had to declare the bankruptcy of the free market. Governments pursued heavy and fundamental interventions in the market economy, have nationalized huge private debts by introducing giant emergency budgets, have taken private credits under state guarantee, have introduced huge stimulus packages for the economy and even neglected the basic liberal principle of liberty of contract by prohibiting lay offs. Governments worldwide have transferred on various ways approximately a total of 8 trillion dollars to the economy, estimates the IMF.

In other words, facing the economic crisis accelerated by the pandemic, almost all governments worldwide have taken initiative and intervened directly. They did not rely on the market forces to heal themselves.

The U.S. has also joined this trek with the stimulus packages it has developed. Trump had to warn Ford via twitter, while the people faced tough times under conditions of the free market economy. The American health care has started ringing alarm bells. Another demonstration of the crisis in the U.S. was on display in Texas, where the population seemed helpless in face of a dire wave of cold.

The state-led and public dominated economic system has become an imperative worldwide. Even traditional defenders of the free market such as the IMF feel obliged to support these governmental interventions.

State intervention was also observed in the development of vaccines against the Coronavirus, by both government investment in research and fastened approval process.

The second point where the liberal-globalist system has failed is the issue of borders. The “ideal” of a world without state borders and tariff walls has ended.

With the coronavirus, borders between states have begun to be reinforced. In Europe, no one less than the French President, Macron, declared that the Schengen system might have come to an end. Even Western capitals express clearly that nationalism and the nation-state will rise again in the future.

This rise is of course accompanied first and utmost by a limitation of the free circulation of capital. Therefore, these re-erected borders mean that tariff walls are build up at the same time. Today, being a national and self-sufficient economy has become the most important target.

Taking a look a Trump’s policies, we see the reflection of this trend. In other words, Trump’s positioning against globalization, his preference of domestic orientation, and his stance on tariff walls can all be interpreted as part of this process.  The Trump government’s harsh critics against companies that had moved production to Asia, its trade war with China that led to questions on the future of investments in that country, its renegotiation of investment and free trade agreement NAFTA, constituted with Canada and Mexico, where U.S. companies also faced limitations on their investments abroad; all these interventions have caused great damage on the philosophy of free capital mobility.

The third point where the globalist system has crushed down is the bankruptcy of neoliberalism and failure of the idea of endless freedom in society. The disciplined societies have achieved success in the struggle against the pandemic. The Soros’ idea of “open society” and the “left”-liberal wave, which the Biden Administration also represents, were imposed globally since the beginning of the 1990s. Both have suffered a great defeat now. The need and presence of a strong, regulative and protective state is felt with great urgency. The social systems, where everyone is responsible for himself, or as a Turkish saying goes, “where every lamb is hanged on its own legs”, have suffered a great implosion. The worth of social solidarity became once again evident. It became obvious that individualism and that cannot overcome the current pandemic; only the survival of all enables the survival of the individual.

At this point it is worth to underline that the system’s crisis did not result from the coronavirus. The current system, based on relationships of mafias and sects, disconnected from real production and instead relying on rent and an economy of cheat; a system that runs with money from weapons’ and drug trade; this system was in a chronic crisis anyway. The pandemic just uncovered the current contradictions, made them more visible and has accelerated the crisis process. The world was going to face this crisis anyhow, with or without corona.  

2. Thesis: A multipolar world is being constructed

While the liberal-globalist system goes bankrupt, a multipolar world is being constructed at the same time. The unipolar world dominated by the US especially since the 1990s is coming to an end. Countries like China, Russia and even Turkey appear in front of the US as a different, opposing pole. Eurasia does not only develop centers of political resistance. The world economy’s focus moves from the Atlantic to the Pacific, as even Western economists admit.

Countries are developing alliances and systems of regional cooperation, from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to the BRICS, from the RCEP to the MERCOSUR. Here especially regional economic cooperation and free trade agreements take the lead. Additionally, especially developing countries pursue more and more coordinated positions and politics in international organizations like the UN Human Rights Council or the WTO. A very striking example is the joint position that more than 50 countries took in the UN Human Rights Commission on the issue of Uighurs against US pressure.

But these developments are not limited to the US or the adversary camp. An important split occurs also within the Western system, within the Atlantic Camp itself.

The US and Europe are deeply alienated and divided. Europe today presents itself a separate pole. Europe abandons following the US’ waters. There is also profound conflict and division within the NATO, the Western systems’, Atlantic Camp’s or unipolar world’s strongest military force. The concerning debates in the NATO surfaced very clearly especially during the Trump Administration.

The establishment of a European military force independent from the NATO is being discussed widely. More importantly, we can state that the NATO countries do not have a shared perception on who’s the enemy, thus resulting in every member whistling a different tune. Besides, one has to remember that the currency Euro was established by Europe against US-Dollar domination.

3. Thesis: The US itself has become multipolar

The developments in the US are connected to the events described in the first and second thesis. We see the reflections of those events in the U.S. today. As the world has turned to be a multipolar place, the U.S. itself also has become a multipolar country.

What does that mean? Formerly, the U.S. was a unipolar country. It is true that with the Democrats and Republicans, two different parties prevailed, but both parties were fulfilling the needs of the American establishment at the end. The political differences between them were very small. We can even state the following: The U.S. state was deciding on the policies ahead first, and than enacting the according, fitting political party to government.

One of the most striking examples for this process are the elections in the beginning of the 2000s, right before 9/11. The U.S. was going to attack, so there was the need for an according government. Bush had to be carried to the White House. Al Gore and Bush entered the electoral race, but the process got stuck in Florida. Than they counted the votes in Florida about “50 times” and let Bush win the elections. Than followed 9/11, the occupation of Afghanistan, the occupation of Iraq step by step.

In summary, the US was unipolar. Although two political parties existed, both served the same traditional American policies and continued the established governmental line of the United States. With the Obama Administration, a Black person could be elected as President, but still a Secretary of Defense from the other party was chosen according to the needs of the establishment. The American state was designing and planning its entire staff according to its needs and pursuing the needed politics.

But now, the situation has changed. Together with the world, the U.S. has become multipolar too. And a new force outside of the traditional two parties has appeared. We can state that this force is represented by Trump. The new political current represented by Trump demands radical changes in U.S. politics. Its point of departure is “not to rule the world but to make things right at home”. Biden on the other side is committed to continue the U.S. role as world police.  

Therefore, the established system in the U.S. is in disorder. It is in such a disorder that the Congress was assaulted upon a call of the President himself. The era of “whoever wins elections, the U.S. politics continue the same way and everyone lives in harmony” is over.

Of course, this process is not limited to the person of Trump. One has to note that his strategy has important followers among the state apparatus, the great American monopolies, the big bourgeoisie and the people itself. We had mentioned already in the first thesis: The system is in a serious crisis, and an economy prevails that relies on drug trade and arms monopolies. We are speaking of an economic system that eliminates production and has even become an enemy of mankind.

This is also reflected in the polarization within the U.S. There is a growing weapons economy in the U.S. and a very small social segment that earns a huge income of it. For that purpose, they rely on the Pentagon, on the Pentagon’s corrupt generals and on monopolies in that defense industry. Adding to that, the globalists earn important income from narcotics trade. This is due to the fact that, the more you expand in the world, the more you control the trade of narcotics. And additionally to these two segments, there is the Empire of Dollar that has nothing to do with real production. This empire is worldwide enforced by arms, therefore directly connected to the expansion of the U.S.

Now, there are forces today within the U.S. whose interests collide with this economic model that relies on drugs, weapons and Dollar Empire, and that is fully disconnected from real production. We observe that companies, whose brands are directly connected to the U.S., do not produce in America anymore. And actually, this was one of the most frequent emphases that Trump made: “We will call the companies back. We want them to produce in America. We will provide them the right circumstances.” Therefore, in America there is a very small segment in society that gets rich by arms trade, drugs trade and the Dollar Empire, while production is shrinking.

This process not only harms those big monopolies or the big bourgeoisie, the industrials that rely on production, it also multiplies unemployment in the population. Therefore, Trump as one side of this polarization does not act alone and for his own purpose but in a joint front with important forces within the state as well as among industrials and the people.

Maybe Trump is eliminated from the political theater within some days, he might also loose his position, but it does not matter. Trump may leave, and another Trump will come and this current will keep on to existing within the U.S. Moreover, we might expect it to deepen and strengthen further in the process ahead.

4. Thesis: The three contradictions within the U.S.

As we have mentioned is there a division and a split among the ruling classes of the U.S. and in the state. But the contradictions in the U.S. are not limited to the division within the state. There is also great competence between the different states as well. This competence among the states is not a new development. As the country’s name reminds, the United States of America does not consist of just one state, but of several. As the income from exploiting the oppressed world will dry out, which is just the other face of the world becoming multipolar, the wealth to be distributed within the U.S. will diminish, the competence inside the country harden and even tendencies of independence will appear.

These tendencies already exist in the U.S., especially in regions like California or Texas. For instance, the Governor of Texas took the stage after Biden’s election and made challenging declarations.

As a result, with the income from abroad drying out in the times ahead, the contradictions between the states may deepen and the “United States” itself may become a matter of discussion.  This is the second contradiction in the U.S. In other words, the state is split in two parts and this split may reappear among the federal states too.

The third is the contradiction between the state and the people. We observed this also during the pandemic. We witnessed how the people took to the streets during the pandemic, with arms in their hands, and afterwards, following the killing of George Floyd, the black started their movement too. In the final act, segments we know as Rednecks took the scene in the American theater with the Congress Assault.

Now we have two different popular movements in the U.S. They even appear to be opposites of each other and enter violent conflicts with each other on the streets. One is the movement of the Blacks, the other is the “White” movement of the Rednecks. The objective class interests of both movements though are the same.

The black movement is comprised of the lowest segments of society. They are not only economically oppressed, but also face a racist treatment. This movement appeared as opposition to Trump, and Biden has tried to use it, but still it would be wrong to state that the movement is fully under control of Biden or the liberal monopolies. One has to state that the movement has a real, objective basis. But on the other hand have Facebook, Twitter, the finance capital monopolies and several actors more all tried to use this movement for their purposes and against Trump.

And now, there is the other, the “White” movement of the Rednecks, which are close to or controlled by Trump. This is also a movement with a class basis, and reasons to protest. We are speaking of the crushing down American middle class and the American farmers.

In the process ahead, these two movements might not come together within a very short period of time. But we have to see that a popular movement in the true sense of the word can only appear and gain strength in the U.S., if it gets independent from those forces that want to use it. And a future unification of these two movements will be very important for the people of the U.S.

Therefore, the third contradiction in the U.S. is the one between the state and the people. The new Biden Administration will face pressure now from both the Black movement as well this movement of the Rednecks. We observe that that these two movements have not ceased their activities with Biden taking over power.

5. Thesis: The main contradiction in the U.S. lies within the state

We expect all three contradictions to deepen and sharpen in the process lying ahead. Among these three contradictions, the one within the American state is the most important one from the point of view of the world or looking from Turkey, because at the end of the day, these problems inside the U.S. offer new opportunities and open new room for maneuver for countries like Turkey. And they enable these countries to act with more courage. When the U.S. is struggling in domestic politics, when its reputation is damaged worldwide, when the world becomes a multipolar place, when the Atlantic Camp is divided both between countries and within the countries (due to frictions inside the state and popular movements), than can countries like Turkey take much more decided steps on their way to independence.

Therefore, the contradiction between the Trumps on one side and those that want to continue the traditional, expansionist policies on the other among the three contradictions is the conflict that calls the biggest interest Turkey, being prone to bear results already in the short term. Moreover, the Redneck movement and the Congress Assault becomes much more valuable for Turkey, because of the fact that Trump has his fingers in it. In other words, if this movement and the assault had no support from within the American state, than it would not have caused that great effect and debate. The movement would have been crushed down right from the beginning. It would not have exercised any pressure on the globalist forces.

It follows, from our point of view, that the most important among the three contradictions is the one that involves Trump and the friction within the state. Formerly, the U.S. was presenting the Saddams and the Khaddafis as dangers. Today, Nancy Pelosi says “the danger is now among us”, in her speech held in the Congress. The U.S. Secretary of Defense orders the military “to stop all activities and discuss the radicalism among the ranks”. Formerly, the terrorists were outside, now they are inside. Surveys among military members show that they feel more threatened by domestic dangers than, for instance, threats in Syria. The U.S. is about to split into two halves.

This fact is very important for all oppressed and developing countries, such as Turkey, that are face to face to American threats. One should not underestimate Trump’s role here, and his connection to the popular movement is valuable in this context. Without any doubt, it will be the popular movements that finalize the realization of the oppressed classes’ interests, but we need do recognize that this process will still take a long time in the U.S. For the moment, the popular movement is in its first primitive form, taking the first steps, or even just learning to walk.

The American state is a major power worldwide and has structure with strong domestic sanctions possibilities. Therefore, the popular movement had not chance to thrive without that friction in the state apparatus itself. Risking repetition: The contradiction within the state is decisive there, and when the time comes, the popular movements will fire the final shot. In Lenin’s expression, when the weakest link in the chain breaks, when the contradictions within the U.S. become sharper, than the popular movement will fully head towards its own path, which is completely converging with the historical path of democratic revolutions.

6. Thesis: Time to wake up from the American Dream and the American Nightmare

Biden’s governance will not smoothen these contradictions, to the contrary, it will sharpen them. We get a glance at the established order’s deep fears, when we observe the National Guard still watching the Congress day and night. A very deep fear is prevailing in Washington D.C. As the reader knows, there is a so-called Green Zone in Bagdad, Iraq, where all the embassies are located. In this Green Zone, they don’t let a bird fly without permission, and all the streets have roadblocks. That Green Zone is often published as indicating the Middle East’s wilderness and terror. Today, similar pictures are taken in the middle of Washington D.C. They were obliged to establish a Green Zone in the middle of Washington D.C. One cannot walk the streets there anymore, not even a bird is permitted to fly the skies, and people encounter a National Guard member or a member of the Army at almost every corner. This fear shows that the Biden Administration will not cover these contradictions easily.

And the Biden’s and his Administration’s declarations also focus on domestic terror. The contradictions and conflicts that the U.S. has tried to spread over the world today have mounted on the U.S. itself. A new witch-hunt is about to begin in the U.S. Formerly; there were no terrorists inside the U.S. They were always outside, but now, they will start to hunt the terrorists inside the country. The measures of McCarthy will now target the opposition to globalism.

It’s true that Biden has arrived to power, that he will continue the expansionist policies. But that does not mean that the world has been defeated and lost. Biden’s government does not mean that he will be capable to organize colored revolutions everywhere, occupy whatever country pleases him or establish a marionette state using the PKK / PYD. His electoral victory does not mean that he will be capable to realize this program. The Atlantic Era is over, how much ever Biden wishes to continue expansionist policies. No matter Biden or someone else, the times that the U.S. could do as it wishes are over. For sure, being prepared, developing regional alliances against imperialist intervention is another, still valid matter, but the main argument is that the U.S. is not country to be afraid of anymore. Even if it is governed by Biden…

Therefore, the process the U.S goes through, symbolized and made obvious by the Congress Assault, will have serious consequences not only domestically, but also on the international arena.

The U.S. state has not only lost reputation in its own country. Its authority has been weakened seriously in the eyes of both allies and adversaries. The former President Bush has commented the events as “happening in a banana republic”. The US imperialism had been called “a toothless monster” or “paper tiger” in past times, today this has become more obvious.

For those who face American threats, courageous steps should replace the fear from the Atlantic. For countries like Turkey, the time has come to be braver. These courageous steps and the resistance of the front against the Atlantic will further deepen the contradictions with the U.S. and strengthen the frictions. The Congress Assault is a major opportunity for us too. Additionally, the multipolar world offers new and broad alliance opportunities. Turkey is not alone. It is time to wake up from both, the American Dream and the American Nightmare. 

Mehmet Perinçek
Historian and political scientist (Turkey)

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