Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Ukraine: Pelosi and Democrats Pledge Support to the End. (Of The World?)

Russia tests first nuclear capable Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile


Richard Mellor

Afscme Local 444, retired




Nancy Pelosi, and her entourage of Democrats in Ukraine have made it clear that the US, and the Democratic Party (the party of the working people in the US apparently) stands "firmly with Ukraine" until it "secured victory against Russia". California Democrat, Rep. Adam Schiff agrees, adding that the US commitment wouldn't end until "victory is won". The victory they are referring to is the victory of the US/NATO military alliance over Russia.

Tim Kaine, another Democrat is eager and work will begin this week on passing President "worker Joe" Biden's $33bn bill for more weapons. "We shouldn't wait around.” (like they do with education, health care housing, there’s no profit to made there) Senator Kaine told CBS.  Concerned as they are with democracy and the safety of the world’s people from tyranny, another Democrat Sen Robert Menendez of New Jersey stresses that passing the $30bn bill is “essential”, not just for Ukraine, but “…to preserving global security.” Rep Michael McCaul, a Texas Republican supports more weapons in order to expel Russian forces from Ukraine’s eastern provinces.


These remarks come on the heels of US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, announcing that as far as the US is concerned, “We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the things that it has done in invading Ukraine” A White House National Security Council spokesperson said the same thing, “We have also said for months that we intend to make this invasion a strategic failure for Russia.” I’m sure these comments will save lives.


And Seth Cropsey, founder of the right-wing Yorktown Institute and a former deputy undersecretary of the Navy had an Op-Ed piece in the Wall Street Journal last week on the necessity of the US showing that it can win a nuclear war. “The reality is that unless the U.S. prepares to win a nuclear war, it risks losing one.” writes Cropsey and suggests that “….arming surface ships with tactical nuclear weapons as well as attacking a nuclear missile sub and thus reducing Russian second strike ability, the US undermines Russians ability to fight a nuclear war.” The US Should Show It Can Win a Nuclear War. WSJ


All of this would seem to give some credence to Russia’s fear that western capitalist countries under the leadership of US imperialism has, since the collapse of the Soviet Union, had a strategy of encircling Russia and strengthening NATO, which is a military alliance of western capitalism, a competitor.  The original elation at the prospect of a Vietnamese type capitalism arising out of the collapse of Stalinism supplying cheap labor and healthy profits for western capital has suffered a dose of reality. Instead, Russia, and to a greater extent, China are rivals and threatening the dominance of US imperialism on the world stage. It is this inter-imperialist rivalry that is behind the Ukraine conflict. India and Brazil will face the same pressure and many Indian voices have reminded the US ruling class that it has to adapt to a multi-polar world and abandon its uni-polar mentality.


But it is China that is the real focus of US imperialism and what we are seeing in Ukraine will be repeated with China in regards to Taiwan with even more devastating consequences. The US is already training Taiwanese troops, a secret that Beijing is aware of and will respond to. It has also been waging an economic war against Chinese companies.


The US and western mass media of course, explains the increasing tensions with China to Chinese aggression. But aggression between capitalist states arises with battles over control of markets and global plunder, with trade wars. If democracy mattered the US wouldn’t be selling weapons of mass destruction to Israel’s Zionist regime or the Saudi thugs. When these issues remain unresolved, (consider Gatt and the WTO as attempts to do that) then armed conflict is resorted to and workers in the opposing capitalist regimes are the victims. Nuclear weapons has averted wars between major powers in the post World War Two era, but it appears that era might be on the way out the door.


It is not military power that is the threat as no military power would consider invading the US or China, or even Russia so the US/NATO alliance will weaken Russian influence with every last Ukrainian if need be. The winnable nuclear war that Seth Cropsey refers to in the Wall Street Journal is the stuff of Hollywood fantasy films, not real life, but that could change. There will be no winners in a nuclear conflict of any sort. I once read that even a regional nuclear war between two minor players, India and Pakistan, would cost more than 20 million lives and cover the earth with a radioactive cloud.


Capitalism is a system of war and the competing forces are driven to it in the last analysis. China’s economic success is what threatens the US capitalist class and its two political parties.


Business Week Magazine, now owned by the billionaire and world’s 12th richest man, Michael Bloomberg, points out that “Beijing’s infrastructure spending puts Washington’s to shame”. At $2.3 trillion for this year, it’s twice what the US Congress passed last year, $1 trillion spread over five years and we’ll see that whittled down especially in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine which the US taxpayer is willingly coughing up. Selling billions of weapons to the Saudi regime for the US/Saudi assault on Yemen may heap profits on US offense contractors but if it continues there won’t be a Yemen left to bomb.

This is what threatens rival powers. It should be progress that's welcomed but for profit


China has 50 million construction workers. It has twice as many miles of high speed rail as the rest of the world combined. BW points out that China can produce a billion tons of steel and 1.5 billion tons of cement a year and its construction companies are among the world’s largest.


Eric Schmidt, the former Google CEO co-wrote an Op-Ed piece in the Wall Street Journal February 6th reminding his class that China is a threat to the US tech industry and pleading for government assistance for tech. With 5G, the US is falling behind in speed (China average speed 299 Mbps and US 94) and its international presence.  China has 355 million 5G users, the US has about 50 million, China has 1.4 million 5G base stations, accounting for more than 60% of the world's total. The US has around 50,000. I commented on this in this video two months ago.


China’s global footprint is undermining US imperialism’s presence as it finances infrastructure deals, highways, rail and port rail construction throughout the world. The Financial Times wrote:“From almost nothing, Chinese banks now make up about one-fifth of all lending to Africa, concentrated in a few strategic or resource-rich countries including Angola, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Zambia.” Financial Times, 01-10-22.


This is an act of aggression as far as the US and western capital sees it and it is a small example of the increasing encroachment of China on US turf. We, as US workers, are drawn in to the competition between US and Chinese state capitalism (?) as allies of the very class that has waged war on our living standards at home; the same class and same political parties that can’t even provide it citizens with something as basic as dental care that won’t bankrupt them. The Chinese, the Russians, the Indians, all nation states that can, do the same of course but not all nation states have the same clout.


I would like to think it unlikely but the reality is that the war in Ukraine has the potential to lead to a nuclear conflict that could threaten the global population and leave millions dead, and millions more over time; that will leave hige swathes of the planet uninhabitable. Coupled with the climate crisis, the time to act was yesterday.  

The comments I include above from the heads of that other Wall Street party are not conducive to finding some sort of peaceful resolution to the conflict and certainly will do nothing but increase Russian fear and paranoia. Yes, Russia is responsible for the invasion but the US/NATO military alliance is not an innocent party here.  The continuing threats to drive Russia in to the stone age through an economic war and providing more and more weapons to Ukraine that will not drive Russia from the east and will only mean more death and destruction. The US intervention in the Korean and Vietnamese civil wars, not to mention Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere has proved a human and environmental disaster.


It will take millions of us globally to stop this descent in to madness as a result of late stage capitalism. There are millions of workers that are at war with capitalism here in the US and throughout the world but we are not united on a class basis in the way the ruling classes of the normally competing states within NATO are.  Class consciousness has been driven back.  Here in the US working class history has been suppressed and airbrushed. When I first came to the US, workers I mentioned May Day to thought it was a Russian or Soviet holiday. Organized labor’s hierarchy (the dogs that don’t bark) are also responsible for the present state of class consciousness or lack of it and certainly for the failure to provide an alternative political option beyond a choice of two of the world’s most powerful capitalist parties, one of them the only party in history that has dropped nuclear bombs on urban populations.


In the conflict in Ukraine as with all capitalist wars, there is no side that workers can support. None of them are acting in our interests. Not the Russian oligarchs, the Ukranian ones, or the western ones that we refer to as entrepreneurs and job creators. It is not the time to bury one’s head in the sand, to refuse to take the bull by the horns and learn the history of our own movements that brought us this far. It is not the time to abstain from politics or to seek answers in the world of feel good movements, metaphysics or identity politics. The stakes are too high and our grandchildren and the planet demands better.  


The youth of the world are not the problem, they are the solution.


The world demands new managers.

No comments: