Will America ever learn?
The Guardian reports that the US is ‘boosting the capability of its Patriot missiles in a warning to Iran’; yesterday it attracted China’s ire by saying it will sell $6.4 billion worth of weapons to Taiwan. Quite how such sales contribute to the ‘security and stability’ of a region as the State Department insists they will is a little beyond me – China immediately announced it would retaliate.
The fundamental logic, that each acts as the others deterrent is so fatally flawed it is untrue and has been left cruelly exposed time and time again in history as being false. Sadly, despite the election of Barack Obama America has not completely changed its ways. In the story about Patriot missiles especially there is a democratic point to be made; the people of those countries have no choice about this and these facilities can be used two ways, to defend against foreign aggressor and potentially to enforce dictatorial rule of the client-despotisms that litter the region with the willing support of the West.
It is a continual source of amazement that the ‘War on Terror’ ; supposedly a war for ‘democracy’ can be used so cynically in the service of the surpression of democracy. However, even a brief acquaintance with the history of the ‘Cold War’ should lessen the surprise as it is here that the West sowed the seeds of its current problems by paying scant regard to the concerns and welfare of the people of the Middle Eastern region.
In government, Labour has been far too keen to submit to the whims of the White House and has too readily forgotten that the best friend is sometimes a critical one. A more critical attitude needs to be adopted in international affairs to the administration in Washington. Not only is it right it would also be popular with the British people who are more than a little skeptical that America has any other interests other than its own national one close to its heart.