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Remember ‘Gorby’, Mr. Gorbachev the last of the USSR’s (United Soviets Socialists Republic) leaders who presided over the disintegration of the giant socialist empire. Just before the formal breakup of the USSR, ‘Gorby mania’ took over the imagination of western powers. After attempting various reforms, Gorbachev and the communist party of the Soviet Union, decided to let go of the countries that were under the firm grip of the USSR, in what was then called the ‘iron curtain.’ Among these countries, we can mention East Germany (now united with West Germany to make one whole Germany), Czechoslovakia, disunited to make the Czech republic and Slovakia, as well as Yugoslavia, completely dismembered into Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Macedonia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Kosovo & Montenegro!
What were the agreements reached between the main protagonists of the cold war, namely NATO & the WARSAW pact countries, when they decided to embark on their new global schema? Initially, there was an intention on the part of some countries of the west, not to allow the unification of Germany (Thatcher secretly pleaded with Gorbachev to this end.) Other than that, the main objective seemed to be the opening up of political governance to more democratic dispensations as well as to usher market-oriented economies in the countries of eastern and central Europe. There was also a stipulation to abrogate the Warsaw military pact/treaty. At the same time NATO was to refrain from expanding eastward. But the most important outcome, at least from the point of view of collective humanity, was the general easing of the ‘cold war’ tension between the superpowers.
Since then however, NATO has been ratcheting its march towards Russia and more! It has insisted on placing the so-called missile shield around the borders of the Russia Republic to counter, it is claimed, potential threat from Iranian missiles! Even if comprehensive agreement on Iran’s nuclear initiative is reached, NATO (read USA) has flatly refused to rescind its project of missile shields.  To counter the US initiative, the Russians have now installed their short-range missile system (with nuclear warhead capabilities-‘Iskander’) on their foremost western enclave, Kaliningrad, a stone throw away from Germany. See the article on page 51. The recent foray to sweet-talk Ukraine into joining the European Union is also another attempt by EU/NATO (on the political front) to undermine Russia. As a result of such aggressive NATO posturing, Russia is now back to its cold war mood.
China is also ratcheting up its military presence in its neighborhood, mostly as a consequence of the ‘Asian pivot’ policy of the Obama administration. The ‘Asian pivot’ seems to bring some countries of North Asia, (Japan, South Korea) South Asia, (the Philippines, Australia) and also South America into the project whose intention seems to be the encirclement of China within the Pacific Rim. Japan just announced that it would go back to its old ways of aggressively building arms and various military capabilities. Democratic rights are in the process of being dismantled/curtailed to foster this and other objectives (for example to hide the biggest industrial calamity in the history of the world-Fukushima!)
Why the arm race once again? It is probably worth repeating what the old general tried to teach us a while back. ‘War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. Only a small inside group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few at the expense of the masses. I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we’ll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns 6 percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag. I wouldn’t go to war again as I have done to protect some lousy investment of the bankers. There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket. There isn’t a trick in the racketeering bag that the military gang is blind to. It has its “finger men” to point out enemies, its “muscle men” to destroy enemies, its “brain men” to plan war preparations, and a “Big Boss” Super-Nationalistic-Capitalism. It may seem odd for me, a military man to adopt such a comparison. Truthfulness compels me to. I spent thirty- three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country’s most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle- man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.” Major General Smedley Butler, USMC, 1933!
What is wrong with us monkeys on two legs? Why can’t we just live and let live, instead of brooding destructive schemes nonstop? We believe the answer lies in the not so well understood phenomenon of psychopathy & sociopathy. The world’s clinical psychopaths/sociopaths number about 70 million and they tend to dominate the arena of power & money. Don’t forget, psychopaths have no moral qualms in all their dealings. They will lie, steal, kill, maim, etc., just to get what they want, which usually are very base objectives, nothing more than certain abstract infatuations with money or power. Since these people are naturally deficient when it comes to human feelings; such as guilt, empathy, compassion, remorse, truth, etc., they tend to be aggressive and criminally inclined. Whether we like it or not, it is these sickos that are currently running the world. Unless these characters are identified and eliminated from positions of responsibilities; wars, environmental devastation, social chaos cannot be rooted out from global human societies. What the world needs is a revolution, first and foremost, against psychopaths and sociopaths! Disagreements/differences between classes, races, countries, ethnicities, religions, etc., can all be potentially managed by humanity, so long as we can collectively get rid of the sickos from all public and private institutions across the world.
We have to recognize reigning psychopaths are absolutely incapable of understanding what the late producer of the famous sci-fi movie ‘star trek’, insisted on enlightening us: “The strength of a civilization is not measured by its ability to fight wars, but rather by its ability to prevent them.” – Gene Roddenberry. Good Day!