A book excerpt worthy of its very own post…


N.B.- this book excerpt is largely material about U.S. policy following WW2, starting with the “Truman Doctrine”, that basically sought to re-establish the pre war mostly fascist order so that it would be compatible with our “interests”, IE the wholesale corporate exploitation of global indigenous resources without having to share the profits with any but a narrow set of our client allies and partners we put in charge. This was very pervasive and at the root of all of our interventionist policy, throughout the Cold War and beyond, up to and including current Neo Liberal permanent war priorities and policies.
This link is a Noam Chomsky book excerpt, and here are some salient quotes:

The central concern, with regard to the Third World, is to defend the right to rob and to exploit, to protect “our” raw materials. More generally, the concern is to maintain the Grand Area subordinated to the needs of US elites and to ensure that other powers are limited to their “regional interests” within the “overall framework of order” maintained and controlled by the United States. In the words of George Kennan, the leading dove among early postwar planners, we must put aside “vague and … unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization,” and be prepared to use violence if necessary to achieve our objectives, not “hampered by idealistic slogans.”


The main enemy is the indigenous population who attempt to steal our resources that happen to be in their countries, who are concerned with vague and idealistic objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization, and who, in their backwardness and folly, find it difficult to understand that their “function” is to “complement the industrial economies of the West” (including Japan) and to serve the needs of the privileged groups that dominate these societies.


The postwar pattern of marginalizing or if necessary destroying the antifascist resistance, often in favor of fascist sympathizers and collaborators, was quite a general and pervasive one. But predictably, sanitized history does not include a chapter devoted to this worldwide campaign, though one can discover the details in specialized studies dealing with one or another country. Where the facts are noted in connection with some particular country, the policy is generally described as a mistake, resulting from the ignorance or naivete of the well-meaning US leadership or the confusions of the postwar era.

One aspect of this postwar project was the recruitment of Nazi war criminals such as Reinhard Gehlen, who had headed Nazi military intelligence on the Eastern Front and was given the same duties under the new West German state with close CIA supervision, or Klaus Barbie, responsible for many crimes in France and duly placed in charge of spying on the French for US intelligence. The reasons were cogently explained by Barbie’s superior, Col. Eugene Kolb, who noted that his “skills were badly needed”; “To our knowledge, his activities had been directed against the underground French Communist Party and Resistance, just as we in the postwar era were concerned with the German Communist Party and activities inimical to American policies in Germany.” Kolb’s comment is apt. The US was picking up where the Nazis had left off, and it was therefore entirely natural that they should employ specialists in anti-resistance activity.

Later, when it became impossible to protect them from retribution in Europe, many of these useful folk were spirited to the United States or to Latin America, with the help of the Vatican and fascist priests. Many of them have since been engaged in terrorism, coups, the drug and armaments trade, training the apparatus of the US-backed National Security States in methods of torture devised by the Gestapo, and so on. Some of their students have found their way to Central America, establishing a direct link between the Death Camps and the Death Squads, via the US-SS postwar alliance.

There is only one sensible answer to this question. The rot that concerns planners is the threat of successful social and economic development outside the framework of US control, development of a sort that may be meaningful to poor and oppressed people elsewhere. The “virus” that may spread contagion is the “demonstration effect,” which may indeed cause “the rot to spread” as others seek to emulate successes that they observe. It is “the threat of a good example.”

Posted in Books

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