Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.  If you broadcast our audio commentaries please consider a recurring donation to Black Agenda Report.

Obama’s Mideast Policy Burns

  • Sharebar
    Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version


    by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    The U.S. believes it can manipulate jihadi fighters in a holy war against the West’s enemies in the Muslim world. However, “Israel’s murderous assault on Gaza threatens to unravel the Salafist-Qatari-Saudi-NATO axis, for one simple and irreducible reason: there is no place for the racist settler state in this post-Arab Spring equation.”


    Obama’s Mideast Policy Burns

    by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

    The Euro-American strategy to divert and control the Arab Spring through an armed alliance with Muslim fundamentalist fighters and their royal Arab financiers, has always contained a fatal flaw: Israel.”

    As African Americans circle the wagons around Susan Rice, one of the most bellicose, bomb-at-the-drop-of-a-hat, Africa-bashing professional servants of power in Washington, America’s carefully crafted house of cards in the Middle East faces collapse.

    The Euro-American strategy to divert and control the Arab Spring through an armed alliance with Muslim fundamentalist fighters and their royal Arab financiers, has always contained a fatal flaw: Israel. The Jewish State’s reflexive savagery towards Palestinians threatens to disrupt, if not destroy, the inherently unstable pact between the Great Satans of Washington, London and Paris, the Great Kleptocrats of Riyahd and Doha, and the martyrdom-seeking armies of Salafist Islam.

    The unholy alliance is a retooling of the U.S.-Saudi Arabia-Pakistan axis that created the global jihadi network – including Al Qaida – at a cost of billions, in the 1980s. The immediate purpose was to humiliate the Soviets in Afghanistan. Inevitably, a “blowback” followed. Washington emerged with a new rational for the old business of imperialism: the war on terror.

    To further circumvent international law and other hindrances to imperial reach, Washington devised the doctrine of “humanitarian” military intervention – where Susan Rice makes her mark as madwoman, demanding blockades and air strikes against Sudan, invasion of Somalia, embargoes on little Eritrea, and regime change in Libya.

    The convulsions of the Arab Spring, leading to regime change of the most unwelcome kind for the West in Tunisia and Egypt at the beginning of 2011, set the stage for an even closer collaboration between NATO and the monarchies in Saudi Arabia and Qatar – and for a new and potentially cataclysmic blowback. The Euro-Americans, confronting the prospect of sudden eviction from an Arab world in flux, quickly regrouped to “get out in front” of the Arab Spring through a massive show of “humanitarian” force in Libya. However, NATO’s air armada needed foot soldiers to seize the ground in Libya, and to physically shove the knife into Muammar Gaddafi’s backside. Just as in Afghanistan three decades earlier, the Americans turned to the Salafists for fighters and to the thieving Arab royals of Saudi Arabia and Qatar for financing and political cover. Susan Rice, now U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, was credited with convincing President Obama to join the French-initiated war to topple Gaddafi.

    It was only a matter of time before significant elements of the U.S.-empowered jihadis in Libya turned against their masters.”

    It is silly to believe that Rice, or anyone other than Obama, was the pivotal person in this grand imperial maneuver. Rather, the sudden and savage assault on Libya was a collective imperial response to Europe and America’s greatest nightmare: mass revolutions in the Arab world, which would mean eviction of the West. However, Rice’s bellicosity and ambition, having thrust her into a key player position, conspired also to place her at the center of the blowback.

    It was only a matter of time before significant elements of the U.S.-empowered jihadis in Libya turned against their masters. And there is no doubt that U.S. political and intelligence leaders saw it coming. When the U.S. ambassador and his entourage were under attack in Benghazi, two unarmed drones were diverted from surveillance duties over Derna, about 100 miles to the east. Derna is a center of jihadi activism, the town that accounted for the highest concentrations of Al Qaida fighters in the Iraq war. Apparently, the U.S. maintained constant surveillance of the city and its environs – and, presumably, other jihadi strongholds – all the while projecting the fiction that the U.S. had empowered the “good” (meaning, pro-American) Islamists in Libya.

    Susan Rice was carrying out her official duty – to lie – when she read purported intelligence reports on CBS Face the Nation, September 16, suggesting the September 11 attacks “began spontaneously” as a protest against an anti-Muslim video produced in the U.S. The explanation was consistent with the official U.S. “line” covering the entirety of the West’s post-Arab Spring offensive in the Middle East, which has since engulfed Syria. Libya’s “good” jihadis have joined Salafists from throughout the Sunni Arab world, largely bankrolled by the terrified feudal regimes in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, in a holy war that Washington has no choice but to pretend it can, somehow, control to its geopolitical advantage.

    The Republicans, who have no problem with Obama’s adventures in Libya and Syria – as Mitt Romney repeatedly affirmed in the third presidential debate – attempt to make partisan points from the obvious falsity of Rice’s remarks. Like Romney, Senator John McCain and other GOP warmongers are saying they could do a better job of projecting U.S. power in the region, through the application of more direct U.S. military force – an approach that would even more quickly unravel the unsustainable alliances in which the Obama administration is so deeply invested.

    The Americans and Europeans now scramble to constrain Israel, lest it enflame Arab nationalism and Islamist sensibilities beyond all manageability.”

    As if the contradictions of U.S. Middle East policy were not already acute enough, the Israelis now force their putrid selves into the maelstrom. Israel’s murderous assault on Gaza threatens to unravel the Salafist-Qatari-Saudi-NATO axis, for one simple and irreducible reason: there is no place for the racist settler state in this post-Arab Spring equation. Which explains why Israel has chosen to make its presence so dramatically felt at this time – why it initiated the current crisis with its assassination of Hamas military leader Ahmed al-Jabari, last week, setting off the Palestinian rocket barrage.

    The Israelis do not see themselves at the center of Washington’s evolving strategy for continued western hegemony in the Middle East, and are forcing the issue in the usual manner: by killing Palestinians. The Americans and Europeans now scramble to constrain Israel, lest it enflame Arab nationalism and Islamist sensibilities beyond all manageability, wrecking the fragile political configurations the West has constructed since the fall of Egypt’s Mubarak, the war on Libya and the torture of Syria.

    Washington understands that it cannot successfully channel a holy war against Syria’s Alawite President Assad and Shiite Iran while its “unshakeable ally,” the Jewish State, wages war on Palestinian Sunnis. It is a fatal contradiction in a region that, only two years ago, seemed to be slipping from the West’s grasp. U.S. imperialism finds itself in deep crisis in the world’s most volatile, and energy-rich, region.

    Meanwhile, South Carolina Black congressman James Clyburn is deeply worried about the racial implications of Republican claims that Susan Rice is not “competent” or “qualified” to succeed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. For Clyburn, this represents a grave problem for Black America. It is actually a perfect measure of how irrelevant the Black Misleadership Class has become to the burning issues facing mankind.

    BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at

    Share this

    Rice is bad for black people

    Therefore she's bad for the entire poor/working class.

    But let's cut the b.s. and figure out the real reason why they don't want her in?

    "What if Israel bombed Iran? The view from Washington."

    By Karim Sadjadpour and Blake Hounshell,  

    Published: SEPTEMBER 21, 3:41 PM ET

    For months, Israel has threatened to strike Iran’s nuclear sites. The United States has urged restraint. If such an operation were launched, how might Washington react?

    President Obama is enjoying a quiet dinner with Michelle, Sasha and Malia at the White House residence on a Thursday evening in October when he gets the call.

    Two dozen Israeli fighter jets have just entered Jordanian airspace, apparently en route to Iran, chief of staff Jack Lew tells him. They will enter Iranian airspace, via Iraq, in approximately 85 minutes.

    “Damn it,” Obama says under his breath. “Bibi told me he was going to hold off.”

    Within 45 minutes, the president’s national security brain trust has convened in the Situation Room. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta informs the group that attempts to reach Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have so far failed but that Israeli military commanders are briefing the Pentagon on Israel’s targets.

    Panetta lays out the United States’ options: either persuade Netanyahu to call it off, or shoot down the planes.

    “Shooting down the planes is not an option!” Vice President Biden explodes. “Tell Bibi the president of the United States wants to talk to him now!”

    Within minutes, Netanyahu’s voice is heard on the speakerphone, and he immediately preempts any attempts to call off the mission.

    “I couldn’t wait any longer, Mr. President,” he says firmly. “I am responsible for the security of the Jewish nation.”

    As Netanyahu explains the operation, Obama eyes the large electronic map of the Middle East on the Situation Room wall. The coordinates of the Israeli planes show that they’re nearing Iran.

    “Mr. President,” Netanyahu says. “I hope we can count on your full support.”

    Obama’s face masks his scorn. He pauses for several moments before responding. “You know I respect Israel’s right to defend itself,” he says, “but I need to do what’s in the interests of the United States.”

    Panetta orders the head of U.S. Central Command, Gen. James Mattis, to activate Operation Gulf Shield, putting America’s military forces throughout the Middle East on their highest defensive posture, bracing for Iranian retaliation.

    Obama surveys the room. “What do we tell the Iranians?” he asks. “They’re going to assume we’re behind this.”

    The battle lines are quickly drawn. Susan Rice — the ambassador to the United Nations and a close Obama confidante, who is in the running to replace Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of state — is the first to chime in, via secure video teleconference: “We need to be clear that the Israelis acted without our knowledge. We need to urge Iran to exercise restraint while we restrain Israel.”

    “With respect,” CIA Director David H. Petraeus says, “if we send them that message, they’ll think they can retaliate without us responding. The Iranians need to believe that if they respond, the United States will enter this war — and swiftly and decisively end it.”

    “I agree with David,” Clinton says. “The Iranians need to know there is no daylight they can exploit between us and the Israelis.”

    Rice is bad for black people

    Therefore she's bad for the entire poor/working class.

    But let's cut the b.s. and figure out the real reason why they don't want her in?

    Fox News:

    Susan Rice's miserable record at the UN

    Rice has been consistently silent on other important issues and ineffective when she does engage. She skipped Security Council meetings when Israel needed defending and even failed to show up for the emergency session on the Gaza Flotilla incident.  

    Rice didn’t even show up for the first two emergency Security Council meetings on the unfolding Arab Spring revolution last year.  

    Rice stayed silent when Iran was elected to the U.N. women’s committee, she didn’t call out Libya when it was elected to the Human Rights Council, she was absent from the Haiti crisis meeting and was a no-show for the last open meeting scheduled before the planned UN vote to recognize Palestinian statehood.  When she actually does show up, she is a miserable failure.  

    Take the crucial issue of Iran.  Rice spent the last several years undermining and grumbling about the Bush administration’s increasingly tough measures but has only been able to pass one resolution of her own – compared with the Bush team’s five.  

    Rice’s one and only Iran resolution was almost 30 months ago.  And it passed with just 12 votes of support – the least support we have ever seen for a Security Council sanctions resolution on Iran.  In fact, Rice lost more support with her one resolution than the previous five Iran resolutions combined.  She may claim she has repaired relationships with other countries but the evidence shows she’s gotten less support than the team she ridicules.  

    Whether the issue is Sudan, Egypt, North Korea, Israel or Rwanda, Rice has been either missing in action or unable to deliver a quick and effective resolution.  

    The Rice record at the UN speaks for itself.  Anyone looking objectively at what she has or hasn’t accomplished during her tenure will deduce she has failed to convince UN members to support US priority issues.  

    Nominating Susan Rice for Secretary of State is a mistake not just because of her Sunday show deceptions but because her tenure as America’s representative to the UN has been unworthy of a promotion.

    Richard Grenell served as the spokesman for 4 U.S. Ambassadors to the U.N. including John Negroponte, John Danforth, John Bolton and Zalmay Khalilzad.  He currently writes from Los Angeles where his pieces can be seen at Follow him on Twitter@RichardGrenell.

    Israel's place in the equation.

    I don't know much about Salafis. I accidentally got into a discussion with one on Twitter once, and thought he was certifiably insane, but an Egyptian assured me that he was just a Salafi and that they're all like that. And I don't know much about Qatar, except that the rulers are rich, own Al Jazeera, and tell a lot of lies. But I think I know a little about the US, Israel, and Saudi Arabia.

    The US and Israel are arms dealers. They sell weapons and buy oil. The Saudis are oil producers. They sell oil and buy weapons.

    In other words, with the US, Israel, and Saudi Arabia, as racist as they are, it isn't about race or religion, but about economics and trade. Mostly about oil. As long as the US and Israel sell weapons and buy oil, and the Saudis sell oil and buy weapons, they'd naturally want to keep each other in place.

    The Saudi dynasty has realistic fears for its survival. Its close relationship with the US and Israel angers many Muslims. Israel also has realistic fears for its survival--it's occupation and oppression of Palestine has angered every country in the world except for the United States and the tiny US-dependent island of Palau, which are the only two votes Israel can rely on in the United Nations. Only the USA has no fears for its survival, because the US government has never been in contact with reality. Most empires fall because they become militarily overextended, and the US seems oblivious to history, going into debt to finance more and more wars it cannot possibly win.

    If the Salafists and Qataris want to ally themselves with Israel, the US, and the Saudis, then they deserve to go down with them. Remember the old saying that you can't get water from a stone? Well you can't get oil from a stone either. But we've passed peak oil and countries dependent upon oil are so desperate that they're literally trying to get oil from stones (fracking), despite the fact that it costs more to do it than the oil is worth.

    Why can't the US win in Afghanistan? Because the US military, the tanks, planes, and even drones, rely on oil for fuel. The US has been paying the Taliban to protect oil tankers bringing fuel from Pakistan to NATO troops in Afghanistan, and often the tankers seem to catch fire and burn up anyway. It was costing the US $400 a gallon to fly fuel to remote US bases in Afghanistan. And people in California are griping about gas being $4 a gallon at the pump?

    Jewish tradition tells of the miracle of the eternal light, where the Jews only had enough olive oil to burn for a very short time, but it miraculously continued to burn. Maybe they can pull that one off again. Because once again it is going to take a miracle of oil for them to survive. Thanks for another great analysis, Mr. Ford.

    Gerald Celente Calls Hitlery/Killary, Sue Rice & Samatha Power

    The 3 Witches of Macbeth @

    They were the main ones pushing O-Bomber to attack Libya using the phony R2P excuse. Plus- After Susan Rice insulted Russia & China when they blocked the US, EU, NATO's attempt at Libya redux 2.0 in Syria, by acting like a spoiled brat who couldn't get her way & then hurling a tirade of juvenile insults at Russia & China- one wonders why Mr Pragmatist [Obama] even thought to put Condi Rice's so-called 'liberal' [evil twin] version, Susan Rice, up for Sec of State. But neither am I keen for the Bushes' [& Obama's] distant relative & fellow Skull & Bones-man, John Kerry [the richest man in congress], for the job. But fully expect that I won't like whomever O-Bomber picks.