By Gui Rochat With Patrice Greanville
As usual, the reality of events in the Middle East is not what the mainstream media may be presenting.
What has not been sufficiently recognized about the Egyptian and other uprisings is that the US government will exercise any effort openly or stealthily (its preferred mode) against any revolt by any population anywhere. And as with every establishment, it fears the power of the people aroused, and will promote and support any kind of ‘acceptable’ military “solution” to subvert an uprising, no matter how valid the grievances. PHOTO: Anwar Sadat, Mubarak’s (dictator) predecessor. The US establishment has been cuddling tyrants in Egypt for a long time.
The comment by Margot White (see http://www.cjournal.info/2011/01/31/has-revolution-come-to-egypt/ ) about the Moslem Brotherhood is entirely correct and exactly to the point about Khomeini and his regime in Iran, which kept the so-called democratic protests in check. The US government was satisfied with the Moslem Iranian rulers as long as they would not encroach on its dominion of the Near East, and after all the Islamic Jihadists were being used in Afghanistan against Russia. But as soon as Iran showed signs of full independence that policy became obsolete. The first ominous signs of resistance came with the Embassy hostages “crisis”, because Carter had accepted to shelter the overthrown and despotic Shah, which was an invitation demanded by Rockefeller because his Chase Bank held the Shah’s fortune.
Then of course it became a policy of setting two dictators, Hussein and Khomeini against each other with Rumsfeld adding ammunition to the fire in the expectation that these two would exhaust their resources and the US would come out the dominant force. (Some tricks never die: Churchill tried hard to set the German fascists on a warpath against the Soviets in the hope they would annihilate each other or emerge much weaker, thereby letting Britain land on top.) It would not be surprising also if Hussein, becoming too large for his britches, was enticed to invading Kuwait, because that would be a reason to trip him and rule Iraq. After being forced back Hussein proved his servitude by killing off the Shi’ite rebellion. But the US prefers an amenable military or civil regime far rather than an uncontrollable and unpredictable dictator.
This last fact is the stumbling block for Egypt where a US-supported dictator was toppled with the silent approval or indeed hidden support of the US government. The risks were not too great because the succeeding military regime was already in place and financed by the US. If the army should remain popular with the Egyptian populace (a misguided trust considering its complicity in the outgoing tyranny), then they will be betrayed and controlled by American interests, which are concentrated about the Suez canal, the main thoroughfare for all shipping to the East and providing access to the oil-rich lands beyond (see link below). A public uprising in the Yemen will be disrupted or diverted into a new form of containment because it lays at the entrance to the Red Sea and the Suez canal.
Most US foreign (and domestic) policy falls under the rubric of “defense” against the latest “-ism”, which is always presented in the propaganda mill as extraordinarily aggressive. Thus we easily go from Communism to Terrorism. In the end, it basically does not matter as long as the term “defense” is acceptable to an American public that assents to the pretense despite the polls of growing resistance to a huge military budget.
But then the Military/Industrial complex has transformed itself into the far more powerful Military/Financial/Media (read: Propaganda) complex. In this new age of manipulation, the revolts in Tunisia and Egypt are presented in the media as popular successes, democratic and admirable uprisings against a local satrap, without mentioning the well established, permanent and US-financed military hierarchy left in place. The simple fact that the rebelling populace shows no fear is a good reason to try to placate them through pseudo-supportive liberal propaganda by the Western media.
But this is also a hope for change, because lack of fear by the masses is very dangerous to the ruling sector, unable to contain their people just by intimidation and adulterous information. Lack of fear shows that the scales have fallen off the eyes of the deluded and oppressed and nothing will blind again—at least for some time—to a liberated vision. In this context of lies and puppetry behind the scenes, the US support for the “Green Revolution” in Iran runs into implementation difficulties because there is no collaborating native establishment bought by the US, unless such support can be found among the circles around Mousavi, who seem middle class enough. Moreover, Iranians tend to be far better educated and much more politically informed than the Egyptian populace. It will be interesting and fascinating to see what may happen there.
For important US military interests in the Near East I would refer to a well-informed article: At Risk in Egypt’s Turmoil: U.S. Military Access to the Middle East.
GUI ROCHAT is CJO’s Associate Editor. Patrice Greanville, who also helms The Greanville Post, serves as publisher.