Asia-Pacific: US Ramps Up Global War Agenda


Like a schoolyard bully, President Barack Obama is flexing American military muscle as he currently sweeps through the Asia-Pacific region. The nominal impetus for the tour was the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit held in Hawaii last week. But rather than discussing “economics” (the E in APEC), the salient focus for Obama and his entourage appears to be “war” – and in particular laying down battle lines to China.

Testy relations with China is nothing new for Washington given recent months of US haranguing over trade and finance, but what Obama’s bombast signals is a sinister ramping up of the militarist agenda towards Beijing.

As if bouncing underlings and lackeys into his gang, the American president has moved on from Honolulu with stopovers in Australia, Indonesia and elsewhere. Given the primary economic power of China in the hemisphere, it might be thought appropriate for Obama to make a cordial visit to Beijing to discuss partnerships and policies to revive the global economy. But no. The omission of China on this major US tour seems to be a deliberate snub to Beijing and a message to the region: that China is to be isolated and ringfenced. This is the stuff of warmongering writ large.

The blatant aggression is naturally smoothed over and made palatable by the Western mainstream media. Reporting on Obama’s unilateral belligerence at the APEC, the Washington Post bemoans: “Try as he might to focus Asian and Pacific leaders on forging new economic partnerships during a regional summit here, President Obama has spent much of his time in private meetings with his counterparts discussing another pressing concern: national security [that is, US military power].”

The Financial Times reports breathlessly: “Barack Obama will not set foot in China during his swing through the Asia-Pacific region… yet the country’s rapid economic ascent and military advances will provide the backdrop for almost everything he does on the trip.”

Note the assertion that it is China’s “military advances” that are prompting US concerns, not the more reasonable and realistic observation that Washington is the one beating the war drums.

The FT goes on to say: “The Pentagon is quietly working on a new strategy dubbed the AirSea Battle concept, which is designed to find ways to counter Chinese military plans to deny access to US forces in the seas surrounding China.”

In “seas surrounding China” it may be thought by some as entirely acceptable for Beijing to “deny access to US forces”. But not, it seems, for the scribes at the FT and other Western mainstream media, who transform US offence/Chinese defence into Chinese offence/US defence. One can only imagine how that same media would report it if China announced that it was intending to patrol nuclear warships off California.

As previously noted by Michel Chossudovsky at Global Research, the South China Sea’s untapped reserves of oil and other minerals are a major driver in US maneouvring. China stands to have natural territorial rights to these deposits and has much more valid claim to the wealth than the US, whose counter-claims on the matter seem at best arrogant and at worst provocative. Again, one can imagine the US and mainstream media reaction if China was eyeing oil and gas fields off Alaska.

But there is a bigger geopolitical agenda here, as Global Research has consistently analysed. The increasing US militarism in Asia-Pacific is apiece with the globalization of war by the US/NATO and its allies. The shift in policy is, as the Washington Post lamely tells us, “the US reasserting itself as a leader in the Asia-Pacific after years of focusing on [illegal] wars in the Middle East.”

However, this is not a dynamic that should be viewed as somehow normal and acceptable. This is, as we have stated, an escalation of global aggression by powers that are “addicted to war” as a matter of policy.

Top of the US hit list is China. Washington’s criminal wars in Iraq and Libya have in particular been aimed at cutting China out of legitimate energy investments in the Middle and East and North Africa (and Africa generally). That in itself must be seen by Beijing as a flagrant assault on its overseas’ assets. Not content, it seems, with achieving that dispossession of vital Chinese energy interests, Washington is now pushing its insatiable appetite all the way into China’s domain. But such unprecedented aggression is made to appear by the US government and the dutiful mainstream media as a natural entitlement where refusal by the other party is perversely presented as “military plans to deny access”.

Obama’s visit to Australia this week is undoubtedly aimed at further twisting the threat to China. In Darwin, the US president is overseeing the opening of a base that will see for the first time US Marines being able to conduct war games on Australian soil. Thousands of kilometers from China, this development may at first seem inconsequential. But then we are told that the move is designed to station US military “out of the reach of Chinese ballistic missiles”. The insinuation is unmistakable and menacing: China is an imminent threat. Somehow, without issuing any such aggressive moves, Beijing is suddenly made to look as if it is prepared to launch ballistic missiles at US installations.

It is tempting to call this US-led dynamic of global war “dysfunctional”. But, disturbingly, it is not merely dysfunctional. The global war dynamic is a function of the collapse of capitalism and democracy in the US and Europe (the brutal police crackdown on Occupy protesters across the US is evidence of the latter). War on the world is the logical outcome of this failed system, as history has already shown us with the horrors of World War One and Two.

Karl Marx once noted: “History repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce”. To avert another “farce” in which the horrors of history are repeated, we need to once and for all challenge the root cause: capitalism.

3 Responses

  1. GJS says:

    It’s hardly a revelation that these people seek out the ones who can offer something to them of importance, otherwise they wouldn’t care less HOWEVER it is a two sided coin, the 1,500 troops they will base in Darwin are certainly an asset to Australia as this provides a deterent that Australia need not fund & like it or not in WW2 we would have been toast if it wasn’t for the US, one could argue that it was to their advantage as well but they indeed could have easily annexed us without much trouble, they didn’t they chose to fight with us & we’d be pretty piss weak allies if we didn’t appreciate it. That’s not to say the same outcome would occur if something similar were to happen, the people running the world now have little regard for anything but themselves now but ubtil the US does something that is threatening or endangering to Australia we should embrace & built upon our alliance, it is not a matter of who is using who it’s a matter of coexistence & cooperation. Having said that there are many areas that I disagree with US policy & I’ve seriously voiced them however we have a much greater chance of shifting their thinking on things we don’t agree with if we are allies rather than antagonists, the US knows it cannot rule the world by itself nor no I honestly believe they want to however their aggressive moves to secure future supplies must be more centred on cooperation rather than oppression or confrontationalism towards others they see as a threat to their future resources.
    The world has finally realised that natural resources are finite & the powers are jockeying to secure those resources left are accessible to them, in the not too distant future maybe the only way will be whoever is left standing but in the meantime don’t we owe it to everyone concerned to idealistically see that WW3 never comes or at least do & compromise everything we can to put that time well into the future.
    It truly worries me what we’ve done & what a threat it is to the continuation of mankind as a civilised society, maybe we will fail AGAIN & be destined to start again or be abolished altogether I don’t know but it has to be worth attempting all we can.
    My best to you all.

  2. Michael Cook says:

    The global encirclement of China is just one of the wests goals, as they have driven the chinese out of most of the middle eastern countries, and they are destabilising Africa and forcing chinese interests there into retreat. To control the worlds assets is another. To hold onto their fading imperialist past is the last fling of a dying empire. The west seems to be having a break from their global agenda, as they bask in the south seas, and make promises with peoples and nations who have very little impact on the world scene to make them feel as though they have some importance to the big boys who run the global agenda. When in reality all they are doing is to use them as military stockists of their depleted uranium which is already poisoning all of Australia. Those who comment on politics and commerce here are blinded by the money, and the fact that the global godfathers have paid them a visit. That is why they are just political minnows basking in the limelight of global importance for but a moment, and then they will come to realise, just as the rest of the world is wakening up to, that they to have been suckered by a bunch of global professional political pariahs.

  3. GJS says:

    I have certainly NOT seen or heard Obama war mongering (as you say) while he was down here in Australia & while I am always wary of ANY Politician he seems to have come across reasonably well. He would have had to have watched what he said as China now is our biggest export market, that we have the enviable position of having a trade surplus with BUT this is only because we were blessed with a bounty of natural resources, god help us when they run out because like the rest of the western world we give NO thought to the future of our country or for future generations. You can say what you want about Asian people but no-one could argue that they behold family above all else, something that we in the west on the whole have forgotten about, I truly fear the state of affairs we will pass onto others, we can certainly learn many things from Asian people & culture, after all there is ONLY one race, the human race in all it’s wonderful colours & customs
    We have allowed the wrong type of people into Politics in the west & now we are getting an inkling of how bad things will soon get, what we’ve had to date is a mere sprinkle compared to the hurricane that’s powering up.
    It is ESSENTIAL that people realise that this has been a creation of both sides of politics, NOT just one side or the other & unless people acknowledge this fact & change their illogical lifetime allegiances to a specific Party NOTHING will or could stop this spiralling into war, a war that NO-ONE could honestly predict the outcome of, if indeed there is anyone left to worry about it or declare the winner, we ALL lose.

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