Black Agenda Radio Commentaries
News, analysis and commentary on the human condition from a black left perspective.
shrunken_uncleA Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
The drive to replace the U.S. dollar as the de facto global currency brings the American empire that much closer to ultimate dissolution. U.S. imperialism’s accelerated decline is best dated to the invasion of Iraq six years ago. In the face of Washington’s general threat to establish itself as the “New Rome,” “much of the planetary community conspired to find ways to break the unequal ties that bound them to the empire.”
The Shrinking American Empire
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
Imperialists believe that everything can be made into a weapon with which to bludgeon the rest of humanity into submission.”
The day before the U.S. invasion of Iraq, back in March of 2003, I wrote a piece called “They Have Reached Too Far” – “they” being U.S. imperialists. I was on that day, as U.S. tanks revved their engines in the sands of Kuwait, preparing to cross into what Washington thought would be a glorious future of global domination, that a crack opened up in time, and it was clear as a desert day that the U.S. empire would be swallowed up in that widening crack – maybe in my lifetime.
George Bush and his gang had rolled the dice, betting everything on a land and resource grab designed to save a parasitical system through world-defying theft and awesome – Shock and Awesome – intimidation. But there was not the slightest doubt in my mind that they would fail catastrophically, although no one could predict precisely how the disaster would unfold.
It was also clear that the U.S. aggression against Iraq should not be narrowly interpreted as all about Israel or about oil or about further expansion of U.S. spheres of geopolitical dominance or about beating back the challenge of the euro. It was simultaneously about all of those things, and more. Empires seek to dominate the very planet, to set the terms for every human transaction. Nothing is beyond the ambitions of empire. Imperialists believe that everything can be made into a weapon with which to bludgeon the rest of humanity into submission.
So I wrote, back in 2003, that the impending Iraq war was
an oil currency war, a preemptive strike against the euro’s potential to challenge the U.S. dollar as the sole denominator of petroleum purchases. By seizing the Iraqi oil fields and positioning itself to do the same in Saudi Arabia, Iran and throughout the Persian Gulf, the Caspian Sea and South Asia, the U.S. can stop the euro cold and rule as its own OPEC, awesomely armed and dreadfully dangerous.” The dollar would “remain supreme, backed by the oil reserves of the globe.”
The American threat to humanity was so general, and so generally perceived and felt, it achieved the opposite of what Washington had wished.”
And that was part of the overall Plan: to set the terms of trade in oil and everything else on the planet, extracting wealth from all the world’s people while creating nothing but terror and, hopefully, submission. But the American threat to humanity was so general, and so generally perceived and felt, it achieved the opposite of what Washington had wished. Rather than the world acclimating itself to the rule of the “New Rome,” as the imperialists were openly calling themselves, much of the planetary community conspired to find ways to break the unequal ties that bound them to the empire.
The Iraq invasion greatly accelerated the process of U.S. imperialism’s decline, so much so, that only a few years later the American Lords of Capital found themselves turning to a Black man to put a dramatically different face on their imperial enterprise. But Barack Obama cannot save them. The U.S. dollar’s days as the world’s reserve currency are numbered, and when the dollar is finally dethroned, only the military aspect of the imperial husk will remain.
For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go to www.BlackAgendaReport.com.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

 

 

 

Direct download: 20090708_gf_shrining_empire.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:46am EDT