Washington: The Bleeder Of The 'Free World'?

Authored by Finian Cunningham via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

Among the many self-flattering epithets it gives itself, the US has always claimed to be the “leader of the free world”. It’s a rather patronizing notion that America views itself as a selfless protector and benefactor of its European allies and others. This fairytale depiction of the world is coming to a rude awakening as American power buffets against the reality of a multi-polar world.

Less a world leader and more like a blood-sucking leech on international relations.

We got a clear view of the contradiction in America’s narcissistic mythology with US President Donald Trump’s announcement that he was disavowing the multinational nuclear accord with Iran last Friday.

Trump didn’t axe American participation in the deal just yet, but he has put it on notice that he or the US Congress may terminate the accord over the next two months. How’s that for high-handed arrogance?

However, there was near-unanimous push back around the world to Trump’s disparagement of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which was originally signed in July 2015 by the US, Russia, China, European Union and Iran. All the signatories uniformly rebuked Trump’s attempt to undermine the deal, which is supposed to lift international economic sanctions off Iran in return for curbs on Iran’s nuclear program.

While Trump accused Iran of “multiple violations” of the accord, all the other stakeholders asserted satisfaction that Iran has in fact fully implemented its obligations to restrict uranium enrichment and weaponization of its nuclear program. The UN watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, also responded to Trump’s claims by reaffirming that eight consecutive monitoring reports have found Iran to be fully compliant with the JCPOA.

Britain, France and Germany, as well as Russia and China, have firmly said that the nuclear deal – which took two years to negotiate during Barack Obama’s tenure in the White House – is not for renegotiation. A point which was reiterated too by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

The deal is also written into international law, having been ratified unanimously by the UN Security Council back in 2015. In a stinging admonishment to Washington, the EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Morgherini said: “This deal is not a bilateral agreement ... The international community, and the European Union with it, has clearly indicated that the deal is, and will, continue to be in place.”

Russia also denounced Trump’s over-the-top aggressive rhetoric towards Iran. The American president was almost foaming at the mouth when he labelled Iran “the world’s top terror sponsor” and accused Tehran of fueling conflict across the Middle East. Moscow said such rhetoric was unacceptable and inappropriate. Iran dismissed Trump’s accusations as baseless lies.

Evidently, Russia, China and the Europeans do not share America’s debased caricature of Iran. And who in their right mind would? The hackneyed American allegations against Iran are – as usual – not backed up with any evidence. They rely on bombastic assertion repeated ad nauseam. It is especially ironic and odious for Washington to accuse others of sponsoring terrorism, given the litany of illegal wars it has launched across the Middle East and the steadily emerging evidence of US links to terror groups in Syria’s six-year war.

Thus, the commitment by all the signatories – except Washington – to the Iranian nuclear deal is a stunning rejection of Trump’s aggressive stance towards Iran.

Ahead of Trump’s anticipated disavowal of the JCPOA on Friday, Germany’s foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel warned that such a move would “drive a wedge between Europe and the US”. Significantly, Gabriel said that Trump’s spurning of the accord was “driving the EU towards Russia and China”.

France’s finance minister Bruno Le Maire also warned the US not to interfere in Europe’s growing commercial ties with Iran. He was quoted as saying: “The US must not appoint itself as the world’s police man”.

Trump’s hostility towards the Iran nuclear treaty has created dissent within his own cabinet. His secretary of state Rex Tillerson and the defense secretary James Mattis are among those who were urging Trump to uphold the JCPOA. In the Congress, there are also many opponents to Trump’s desire to axe the deal, even among his Republican party. It remains to be seen if the Congress will call for new sanctions on Iran over the next 60 days, as Trump has requested. If Congress does, it will mean the US crashing out of the accord.

In theory, of course, the EU, Russia and China can continue to uphold the nuclear accord with Iran and conduct international trade and investment without the Americans. Russia and China have signed major oil and gas pacts with Iran over the past two years.

The European states have also lined up huge commercial projects and investments with Tehran in sectors of energy, engineering and infrastructure.  Germany and France in particular have seen their exports to Iran soar since the signing of the JCPOA. With Iran’s 80 million population and vast oil and gas reserves, the Persian nation represents lucrative opportunities for Europe, given too the geographical proximity.

But the US is still able to exert tremendous power over international banking to the extent that it is having a chilling effect on other countries doing business with Iran. The European states are particularly vulnerable to American pressure.

In a Bloomberg report, it headlined: ‘Trump's Iran Decision Throws Uncertainty Into Business Plans’.

The report goes on: “Since a landmark nuclear agreement freed Iran’s economy from crippling economic sanctions, investors eager to tap the country’s energy reserves and its 80 million consumers have waited for signs it was safe to enter the market in full force… Donald Trump is about to signal that they should keep waiting.”

The US view of Iran is so warped – much of it from relentless propaganda demonizing the Islamic Republic – that it is evidently incapable of normalizing relations as it is obligated to do under the multilateral nuclear deal. Trump ironically accused Iran of “not living up to the spirit of the accord” when it is the US that has worked assiduously to undermine it.

Since Trump took office, he has reportedly cancelled all export licenses to Iran. His administration and the Congress have slapped more “secondary sanctions” on Iran over allegations that it is destabilizing the Middle East and for its support to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad.

These bilateral US sanctions inevitably have a deterrent effect on other nations doing business with Iran out of fear that they may be penalized in the future. Long-term investments over several years are prone to prohibitive risks due to the uncertainty about what Washington’s capricious policy towards Iran will be.

America’s unilateral, hegemonic conduct – accentuated under Trump – is rapidly alienating other nations. This president seems to operate a “withdrawal doctrine”, as Richard Haass, president of the DC-based Council on Foreign Relations, commented. Trump’s contempt for multilateral obligations peaked with his announcement back in June on backing out of the Paris Climate Accord. It has peaked again with his repudiation of the UN-backed Iran nuclear deal.

What is becoming increasingly apparent is that US unilateralism is all about pandering to its own selfish interests. Trump’s administration has hit Russia with more sanctions and has warned that European energy companies involved in developing the Nord Stream 2 gas project with Russia’s Gazprom will also be sanctioned. The flagrant agenda here is for the US to replace Russia as Europe’s gas supplier, selling its own more expensive fuel to Europe.

Likewise US hostility and sanctions on Iran are not just limited to its own perverse policies.

Washington also wants to block others from also doing legitimate business and trade with Iran. For the Europeans struggling to boost their flagging economies, the impediments being thrown in their way by the US over Iran are another source of resentment towards American unilateralism.

This is not the idealized conduct of the self-proclaimed “leader of the free world”. America is increasingly seen as the “bleeder” – a declining power which wants to suck the economic lifeblood from others in order to sustain itself. This untenable American unipolar craving is inevitably hastening the reality of a multipolar world, as Europeans in particular realize that they can no longer afford to prop up America’s economic obesity.


Yen Cross Wed, 10/18/2017 - 02:07 Permalink

  I've worn suits for many years. If ya got hairy knees, your my friend.  Go buy a motorcyle,  or in my case, an 80's era Ferrari . Anyhow- you'll be entertained for years.  Bitchez

giovanni_f Wed, 10/18/2017 - 02:14 Permalink

Game over. But the Angloimperialists being masters of destruction won't leave the stage without killing another few hundred millions in the process.

Dead Canary Wed, 10/18/2017 - 02:14 Permalink

I have information that will blow this wide open. You see, 3 months ago, I heard a knock on my door. There stood a man with a bullet wound and a computer disk in his hand. What happened after that is unbelie...Wait a minute, there's someone at the door.I'll be right back...............................

LetThemEatRand Wed, 10/18/2017 - 02:22 Permalink

Trump said he was going to put America first.  To me, that meant stop fucking around with the rest of the world.  Concentrate on rebuilding America and reining in the multi-national corporations that have offshored our wealth.  But to Trump, apparently, "America First" meant America needs to lead the rest of the world by force of arms but do it even better than the last several America Fuck Yeah Presidents.  More Goldman bankers need be in powerful positions.  More money needs to be spent on the military for oversears adventures.Same old.  Meet the new boss, etc.  Fuck Trump.

AurorusBorealus Wed, 10/18/2017 - 02:32 Permalink

The U.S. violated the North Korean nuclear treaty that Clinton signed.  They never supplied North Korea with the promised nuclear materials.  They never helped North Korea build reactors as promised, and they never normalized relations with North Korea.  This move by Trump is just another in a long, long list of treaties that the U.S. has broken.The effect is to make diplomatic relations with any nation and negotiations with any nation impossible, because the U.S. cannot be trusted to abide by any treaty or any agreement.  Their signature on any document is meaningless.  Of course, the Dakato Sioux learned long ago that signing a U.S. government treaty is pointless.  The U.S. is a nation without real laws.  The wealthy and the elites do as they please without consequence, dictating by force and propaganda to everyone else.  There is no reason to expect that U.S. foreign policy would be any less lawless or dictatorial.It is a good thing that Americans worship their military and glorify all of their soldiers, because the only way for the U.S. to influence foreign governments at this point is by force of arms.  Negotiating with the U.S. is pointless.

not dead yet AurorusBorealus Wed, 10/18/2017 - 03:51 Permalink

The US was to also to supply food and oil in the deal which required the Norks to back off on their nuke bomb development. In the beginning the US did as promised then the food and oil aid dried up. The Norks stood by their end of the deal and when the US didn't abide by theirs they went back to the bombs. Those with an agenda like to claim the Norks played us and cheated so the US could save face and be portrayed as a victim instead of the truth that the US is a lying double dealing snake in the grass.Lots of ignorant people, many on ZH, claim Clinton with helping with their nuke power plants gave the Norks the tech they needed to make bombs. Nukes for power and nuke bombs are apples and oranges. As far as the nuke plants themselves they never got past pouring the foundations.Actually the military is 3rd on the list for screwing over countries. With the US in control of the banking system and having the reserve currency they can squeeze the targeted economies of the countries they wish to destroy like they are doing to Venezuela today and attempted to do with Russia without success but they are still trying. If that doesn't work they send in the CIA boys and the NED to organize and fund opposition in hopes of overthrowing the government. Chile, Guatemala, Honduras, and most any country south of the US border come to mind. When that fails then they send in the military. With Russia and China offering an alternative to the dollar and US financial control the US may have to elevate military action to the number one spot. Thus the US attempting to stomp anything that endangers the dollar.

In reply to by AurorusBorealus

AurorusBorealus not dead yet Wed, 10/18/2017 - 04:44 Permalink

 The U.S. multinational was born with the United Fruit Company and the Standard Fruit Company.  These companies became enormous land-holders in several South American nations, including Guatemala and Honduras. Their holdings, power, and influence was so vast that they controlled the governments of several Central American companies.  They bribed politicians to grant them enormous concessions.  This is where the term "Banana Republic" originates.  The architect of many of the "deals" that United Fruit Company made with these governments was a man named John Foster Dulles, who was a senior partner at the most powerful Wall Street Law Firm: Sullivan and Cromwell.  Sullivan and Cromwell was THE firm that created U.S Steel (from Carnegie Steel), created the legal status of the "holding company," and negotiated the "Panama Canal."  John's brother, Allen Dulles became the 3rd director of the CIA in 1953 under Eisenhower.  At that time, the CIA was a poorly financed, poorly coordinated operation staffed mostly by ex-military people from World War II.  After the CIA failed to detect the buildup of North Korean forces on the border with South Korea, the agency was overhauled.  Allen brought all of his brother's Wall Street, United Fruit tactics into the CIA, and immediately began the process of imperial expansion that you describe and that is described in Confessions of an Economic Hitman.  His model was how the United Fruit Company managed politicians: bribes, threats, coups, and assassinations.  He also connected the CIA permanently to the major players on Wall Street.  His first major act as CIA director was to orchestrate coup d'etats in Iran and Guatamala.Dulles' other model was the Marshal Plan and the reconstruction of Japan.  Once Europe and Japan were rebuilt, the CIA and Wall Street expanded the American empire south, into Latin America, via the process that you describe (and as described in Confessions of an Economic Hitman).  They used loan packages via the IMF, World Bank, and Wall Street investment banks to bride South American governments to give projects to U.S. development corporations, such as Bechtel.  They bribed local politicians to accept these massive loan packages and indebted and enslaved whole nations in South America with these enormous debts.  Other U.S. industry followed. including the major auto manufacturers, Cola producrs, Johnson and Johnson, and so forth.This is the history of the "deep state:" where it came from and how it came to guide U.S. foreign policy.  It began in the CIA with the merging of former military intelligence people with the interests and corruption of Wall Street.  The center of the "deep state" was, is, and always has been the CIA.  These people have guided U.S. foreign policy since the assassination of Kennedy.  U.S. presidents are mere puppets, and the U.S. empire is, was, and always has been a Wall-Street-Military-CIA empire.  The U.S. has been a fascist regime for 50 years. So... when all the good little U.S. patriots sign up for the military, worship their military, and glorify their veterans, what they are really doing is celebrated the hitmen, murderers, thugs, cutthroats, and goons of a fascist regime run by CIA agents for the benefit of Wall Street tycoons who are bent on raping and pillaging the wealth of the entire world.  So, be sure to stand for the national anthem... .

In reply to by not dead yet

ThinkAgain Wed, 10/18/2017 - 03:43 Permalink

The West had all windfall. By its design. Than debt kicked in since 1979: real growth was replaced by credit growth. Wages stable or down and credit higher and higher. And as we all know: there's an end to credit (as it has to be repaid). Than hubris kicked in (and has gone in overdrive in 1989) and accelerated the credit boom tremendously. What is left is a broken system. In terms of credit excess and government trust. A pity. I really don't understand the drive for less wages and more credit (even a child knows that's not a viable concept). We had the best system (wealth distribution by the market), but we let it for hijacking by the financialization of Chicago Economics (burned soil economics: the winner takes it all: nothing grows under Chicago Economics: only credit and inequality: wealth concentration by the market) and we're lead by neocon warlords born out east european parents teamed up with the global dollar supremacy beneficiaries. Think what would have happen if for example Alfred Herrhausen (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Herrhausen) would not be murdered by CIA client force RAF. Global GDP would have been double now, with cleaner technology. Don't believe that Maltusian nonsense: it's a backwards ideology: global GDP can easily been doubled with a cleaner environment and better resources management than we have now (the best example is the replacement of concrete iron by basalt fiber: better/cheaper/easier): Maltusianism is so anti-science: the population bomb is not a bomb: it's just a decline of the supremacy of the West in numbers: nothing more and nothing less: Paul R. Ehrlich and his depri friends should just increase their Prozac intake instead of spraying their personal depressions into the media time after time. Empires are always bad for the normal people in their homelands. What goes around, comes around. We could have given our kids a good future. We didn't. See http://www.planck.org/publications/What-Ended-Global-West-Dominance.

Joiningupthedots Wed, 10/18/2017 - 04:53 Permalink

The world has moved on and America is being left at the roadside.She has exhausted all the small countres to destroy and all that remains is medium size countries like Iran and North Korea who will beat America in any conventional land war.The big two of Russia and China can turn the continental United States into a sheet of vitrified riock in jyst 24 minutes +/-All that blood and treasure expended since WW2 for what?The defence of a bunch of Ashkenazi Khazars (theyre not even real Jews FFS!)Give it up. Use your wealth to build a proper technologically advanced society with real moral fibre instead of allowing it to be squandered by a bunch of moon howling masonic devil worshippers.Go on America you know it makes sense and you really want to.JUST DO IT. 

Grandad Grumps Wed, 10/18/2017 - 05:31 Permalink

True and yet Bullshit!

The world hegemony of central banks is driving the US to be the world's military bad guy. Whether by consent or conquest, they will have their distopian new world banking order. Satan is alive and well and living in Basel.

Golden Showers Wed, 10/18/2017 - 07:01 Permalink

Washingnot is the biggest gaping asshole on the planet who presumes to fit the entire world up in its unkempt hole.We live without hope.But as long as the whorehouse is open I guess only blackness and lube are there to cross our hearts to in school if they even pledge allegiance any more.You know what rhymes with octopus? A squid. And you know what defense the deep sea amorphous recluse has? Ink.Ink.That's all this evasive all seeing omnipresent inside out sea monster has is ink.Sound familiar?Like attracts like.

brushhog Wed, 10/18/2017 - 07:59 Permalink

I had a friend who needed help once and I set the guy up in a nice house, gave him a job and a car. It wasnt long until the guy hated me. Human nature. Whether anyone wants to admit it or not, the US has carried the load for the western world for a long time and because humans are envius, prideful, and shitty, they resent it. People resent being helped, believe it or not. They'll take the help when they need it and then convince themselves that they arent really being helped, they are being "used", or maybe that they are "outsmarting" the guy who's helping them, or maybe that they are "owed" it so its not really help because they have it coming by rights.Eventually I had to put the guy out and let him do for himself. I think the US is about ready to do the same. Why should we carry the burden of maintaining world order? It can be successfully argued that we havent been doing a good job of it lately anyway and it is no longer appreciated. I say its time to put Europe and the rest "out" on their own. Build your own military, keep your own peace. Better for all involved.

brushhog breadonwaters Wed, 10/18/2017 - 09:03 Permalink

Yeah the bum I helped out ended up with the attitude that He had actually helped ME. LOL. The truth is the US has born the brunt of the military burden. As President Trump correctly surmised the other countries have NOT paid their fair share. We've been carrying Europe, and Japan. Its become too expensive, too many of our guys have died while Europe spends its money on early retirement plans, free health care, and other free domestic services. Meanwhile the average American is going broke over here. No hard feelings, nothing against you guys but we just cant do it anymore.

In reply to by breadonwaters