- Washington Prepares Heightened Aggression Against Damascus and Moscow
by Barry Grey, https://www.wsws.org/, 29 Sep 2015
Addressing the United Nations General Assembly on Monday, President Barack Obama portrayed himself and the US government as the preeminent defenders of international law and diplomacy. He did so even as the catastrophic consequences of the illegal wars of aggression he has overseen continued to send waves of refugees fleeing the ruins of entire countries—including Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen—and as Washington took new steps to turn Eastern Europe into a militarized zone for eventual war against Russia.
With his trademark hypocrisy and contempt for the intelligence of his audience, Obama hailed “an international system that imposes a cost on those who choose conflict over cooperation.”
This from a man who asserts the right of his government to launch “preemptive” wars against any country or group deemed hostile to Washington’s drive for hegemony over the oil-rich Middle East and the rest of the world; who has killed untold thousands in drone missile assassinations; waged an unprovoked war against Libya and murdered its leader, Gaddafi; and armed and financed a sectarian civil war using Al Qaeda-linked killers as its proxy force, turning Syria into a chamber of horrors.
The US finds its position in Syria and the broader region severely weakened, despite the mass killing in the country—estimated at 200,000 deaths in a country with a population of 23 million—caused by the sectarian civil war instigated by Washington and its regional allies, Turkey and the semi-feudal sheikdoms of Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
The net result of Washington’s reckless and murderous war for regime-change in Syria has been to turn the country into yet another geopolitical flashpoint where US and allied military forces face off against those of Russia, raising the very real danger of an armed clash and the eruption of a wider war between nuclear armed powers. On the eve of the UN assembly, France began its own bombing campaign in Syria, making clear that it was prepared to attack forces allied with Assad, potentially including Russian forces, as well as ISIS. Britain is lining up to begin bombing the country later this year.
It would be a dangerous mistake to believe that Washington’s decision to seek talks with Russia and Iran means the US is backing off from the use of military violence. On the contrary, with its economic and diplomatic position weakening, the response of American imperialism will be to ratchet up its bullying and military aggression.
At the same time, the Pentagon and CIA are stepping up their war preparations against Russia. The upcoming US-NATO Trident Juncture 2015 war games, the largest held since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, are designed to prepare Western forces to engage in hybrid warfare operations in the Baltic region and beyond.
Last week, an article appeared in Foreign Policymagazine with the title: “The Pentagon is Preparing New War Plans for a Baltic Battle Against Russia.” The article stated, “For the first time since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the US Department of Defense is reviewing and updating its contingency plans for armed conflict with Russia.”
Finally, the US is planning to upgrade its nuclear arsenal in Europe with highly sophisticated B61-12 guided nuclear bombs, each one of which is more than three times as powerful as the atomic bomb that killed over 130,000 people in Hiroshima.