In the Name of The Father, and of The Son and of The Holy Spirit, Amen.
ORBIS NON SUFFICIT
SOLUS DEUS SUFFICIT
In a post titled Columbus Day / USA Grand Design For The Middle East, I mentioned that USA has a grand strategic objective but no primary grand strategic interests in the Middle East. I mentioned that Europe has both, grand strategic objective and grand strategic interests in the Middle East, or at least for at least three millennia has thought that she does.
Here I want to elaborate upon those statements.
At least from the days of Alexander, Europe has itched to go East, specifically to the East: India and China. The attraction has been wealth repositories and wealth production in the East, plus no little spiritual seeking and racial and linguistic memory. Pythagoras was said to have visited India or at least organized his monastic movement on concepts and procedures he had heard were Indian and/or Tibetan. Marco Polo made it to China. The Great Spice and Silk Roads operated during and since before the times Jesus the Christ walked in this breathing world. Francis Xavier made it to Japan and was headed to China when his physical frame collapsed.
The most fundamental technologies were the draw East: agriculture (to be understood in panoramic operation as chemicals, nutrient and psychotropic) and textiles. The East had silks in which Pietro di Bernardone, father of St. Francis of Assisi, traded to profitable effect. The East also had agriculture both leafy and distilled and naturally hardened: precious metals and stones. All wealth, ultimately, is geologic.
To get to the East, Europe had to transit the Middle East. And, following the fall of Byzantium, when Islamic enmity and rapacity added yet more to the already rampant dangers of tribalism and climatological extremes, quiet flow of communications across the Middle East to the East threatened European economics, tastes and habits.
All this went on so long that Europe as a whole, regardless of her own lethal tribal vagaries and climatological extremes, developed the habit of considering her welfare, at least major majorities of it, tied to the Indies, the East. This has not changed, not to this day. Europe looks East and probably always will. Her partitioning of the Middle East (aka the Ottoman Empire, avenging the fall of Byzantium half a millennium earlier) following World War One — done to foster quiet flow of Europe’s communications across the Middle East to the East — set final seal, as if one were needed, to Europe’s facing East for her welfare. Even Hitler marched East for his grand strategic objective and grand strategic interests. Stalin, by contrast, marched west — not a Russian disposition — although later he sent recognizance in force east and southeast towards Korea, China and Southeast Asia.
USA has the opposite facing. USA gets to the East by moving west. She looks west for her welfare. She gets to the East for her own reasons, not Europe’s. USA does not move through the Middle East to reach the East. To USA, the East is west across the Pacific, a surface she intends to access freely. India and China are the West to the USA and hardly the critical necessity to her that they are — as the East — to Europe.
Russia, too, to USA is the West. USA and Russia are long-time friends.
Twice in the 20th Century, Europe induced USA to save her from fires ignited by her own deformities: Monarchism (World War One) and Socialism (World War Two). Monarchism survived World War One: openly in Japan and sotto voce in Europe. Socialism survived World War Two: openly in the Soviet and not so sotto voce in Europe. As socialism collapsed the Soviet, it reared the European Union … who looks across the Middle East to Persia, India and China: the East. Again, as always.
This time, today, since 11 September 2001, Europe has induced USA to act as her proxy in the Middle East, to guarantee quiet flow for European — and some American — communications there. Only Americans in Name Only (TWANLOCs, and here) argue now for USA spending blood and treasure for European grand national objectives and grand national interests in the Middle East.
During and just after World War Two, there was some excuse by way of habit, ignorance and/or stupidity for Americans who committed to, as the saying went, Europe First in how USA was to prioritize European and Pacific war operations. But at today’s distance from World War Two, and with two major wars to America’s west pressing upon American treasure in the interim — both regarding governance of the globe’s surface between Asia’s eastern and America’s western littorals, and one still active nearly seventy years on — to argue that USA has grand national objectives and primary grand national interests in the Middle East and so must face East alongside Europe, nay, as Europe’s proxy, is malicious and seditious. It is un-American.
The only people who argue for spending American treasure on other peoples’ non-USA interests are people who believe American treasure does not belong to Americans. That is, socialists, who believe nothing belongs to anyone excepting themselves.
Attacking the Taliban in Afghanistan and Ba’athists in Iraq was proper conduct of statecraft by USA. Punitive expeditions. Both participated in the attacks on US assets on 11 September 2001. Saudi Arabia, another participant, also should have been attacked punitively. USA activities post-removal of Taliban and Ba’athists is another matter, and tangential to the subject here.
Iraq and Afghanistan, for USA, have been punitive expeditions which morphed, without much thought, into strategic objective-less local sovereignty-training missions. Not since 1979, or earlier, has USA announced a USA grand national strategic objective or grand national strategic interests in re the Middle East. This is because there are none to announce. So, the lack of USA strategic objective and interest felt by USA Armed Forces in the Middle East is put down to the fact that really there are none and probably never will be any. Time to carry through the commitment to stand up Iraqi and Afghan national sovereignties — Russia and India should be called in to help with the latter — and otherwise retire to let the parties conduct their business as ordinary nation states.
Let Germany, France and Great Britain tend to their interests in the Middle East instead of seducing USA to do as their proxy. USA’s interests are westward, across the Pacific, except for Intermarium and Spain across the Atlantic, Baltic, Black and Mediterranean.
After extirpating the students (Taliban) in Afghanistan and Ba’athists in Iraq, and after fulfilling commitment to foster national sovereignties in the Middle East — especially Iraq, Jordan, Egypt, Kuwait, Afghanistan and some Gulf States — USA has no grand national objectives and only derivative grand national interests in the Middle East. The derivatives are due to such attachments as USA has to Europe’s grand national objectives and primary grand national interests in the Middle East. Said attachments are renounceable. They are in fact a body of death, as all attachments are.
I will go farther. I will say that, excepting the Intermarium and Spain, USA has no grand national objectives or grand national interests in Europe herself. American businesses and other private institutions may well have interests in Europe and the Middle East, but those interests are private. They are not per se constituent elements of USA grand national objectives or interests. At least not by ineluctable necessity and not merely by dint of being. The Intermarium and Spain are another matter, beyond the scope of this post, but within the grand strategic interests of the USA.
USA has the general interest of quiet flow of communications across the Middle East. But not for reaching the East by that route and not uniquely. USA grand national strategic objective — strengthen USA national sovereignty — comprises quiet flow of communications everywhere on, over and under the globe’s surface. The Middle East is not special to USA, who faces west. It is special to Europe, who faces east.
Excepting the Intermarium and Spain, Europe is not a strategic partner of USA. She has never been a political partner of USA. Always, whether under monarchial, socialist or parliamentary government, Europe has sought to undue the morale and institutions of American liberty. The idea of common humanity self-governing is hateful to Europeans. The Church has not penetrated their hearts in that regard, largely because the Latin Church — Roman and later Anglican, Protestant (Lutheran) and, less so, Reformed (Calvinist) — spent centuries after the Council of Chalcedon giving a stink eye to civil/common self-governance. The Greek Church even more so.
Update 2: Spengler: Why Europe’s New Nationalists Love Israel
Update 3: Yes, Trump Is Winning
Update 4: Angelo M. Codevilla writing in Advice To War Presidents:
Of course, commercial rivalries exist. But they are properly understood as private rather than public quarrels. We should understand interest primarily in terms of any regime’s constituents’ interests in their own primacy and material profit as well in satisfying their friends and fancies. As Adam Smith argued, the British decisions that inflamed the American Revolution were moved by and for the profit of the British East India Company, not Britain.
AUM NAMAH SHIVAYA