I have just finished writing a book. It is with the publisher and called ‘Perfidy, meaning untrustworthy or deceptive. In chapter one, I start with an evolutionary analysis of the City of London. I believe that once a person has an understanding of the British economic system, then everything else makes sense. The theme of the book covers contemporary international affairs and some recent history. As the Zen Master said, “we’ll see”.
The Ukrainian war took a sinister and potentially irreversible turn when the Biden Administration approved a US Navy operation code-named ‘BALTOPS 22’. This was a clandestine and covert operation that authorised the illegal sabotage of European Union (“EU”) infrastructure in the North Sea. To his credit, he did as he promised earlier when he stated publicly that America would stop the flow of Russian gas to Europe. However this does not chance the fact this was an act of deliberate international terrorism and could be viewed as an act of war against Germany and Russia. “What is good for the goose is good for the gander.”
If Russia had carried out an equivalent operation against the USA, it would have been characterised as an act of war. Operation BALTOPS 22 saw the destruction of three of the Nord Stream pipelines from Russia to Germany. Both Nord Stream 1 (operative at the time) and 2 (inoperative at the time) were sabotaged in this act of terrorism. Details are credibly reported by celebrated reporter Seymour Hersh in his recent article titled ‘How America Took Out The Nord Stream Pipeline’ dated 9th February 2023.
In response to unbridled Western aggression. Russia has gone onto a war footing and mobilised its industry to provide the hardware and artillery shells, and ammunition for a confrontation with NATO. According to retired US Army Colonel Douglas McGregor and retired US Marine Major Scott Ritter, the US is doing all it can to escalate the war.
Ukraine is presently being obliterated by the Russian Army, spear-headed by the incredibly effective Wagner Group. Lieutenant General Yevgeny Prigozhin is the Commander of the Wagner Group. The Russian Army appears to provide the artillery cover, and the Wagner Group the strike forces on the ground.
Behind all this killing lurks a monster. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, in his last official speech, talked about the scourge of a military-industrial complex. He said, “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex (“MIC”). The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defence with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together.
When POTUS Eisenhower talked about a Military Industrial Complex (“MIC”), he was referring to the industries that had been developed to manufacture the multitude of parts and components that supplied a worldwide US army. The USA responded magnificently to the vicissitudes of a call to arms during WW II. The MIC is a set of mega-industries that brilliantly engineered the fulfilment of those supply requirements.
This monumental effort to supply the US and allied armies during WW II evolved further after the war into commercial and other interdependent corporations. The industrial infrastructure was not easily converted to accommodate peacetime utility. To a very great extent, the MIC could not adjust. It was explicitly mechanised for military weaponry.
Nevertheless, they continued to have massive overheads and innovative research and development (“R & D”) departments. New weapon discoveries arose out of R & D and led to the creation of other industries and even greater productivity. The product was weapons which were sold for profit and the shareholders demanded bigger dividends. The age of American militarism driven by commerce had begun.
From a US and local perspective, say at the street level, the MIC comprises responsible, reliable corporations. The MIC keeps America safe by arming the US military with the money to defend the country. The dynamic is vital to the MIC. The continued survival of the MIC is dependent upon Congressional contracts. Unfortunately, the demand for MIC products is significant in times of war.
The 2022 Democrat $1.7 trillion Omnibus Bill was over four thousand pages long and delivered to the House of Representatives twenty-four hours before it was voted into law. The US Congressmen could not possibly read, digest, and responsibly debate such a massive spending Bill given only twenty-four hours’ notice. Nevertheless, it was passed by a majority of Democrats.
It is a sad truism that in peacetime and international tranquillity, MIC fortunes decline. DC military lobbyists talk up threats, usually against second-tier enemies. After the Afghanistan debacle, Ukraine became a prominent site for destabilisation. It was a huge mistake. They encouraged NATO to pick a fight with Russia and have been getting their clocks cleaned ever since. The overall dynamic has political ramifications with consequences far beyond the contemplation of DC lobbyists. The danger to the national body politic of an overpowering MIC influence has serious consequences. Some people describe the MIC as the influential decision-makers in the Washington, DC swamp. The outgoing 2021 117th US Congress, led by Democrats, was severely jaundiced and counterproductive to US interests. The 2023 118th US Congress, led by Republicans, has its work cut out to repair the damage.
The unholy tie-up with the MIC means that Senators and Congressmen are not free to express their opinions or vote with their consciences. They cannot be seen or suspected of voting against MIC interests. They know where their bread is buttered. The multi-billions of dollars allocated to MIC projects by Congress are treated as a given. The fact that it is not affordable is ignored. The national debt is closing in on thirty-three trillion dollars and strangling the country.
Changing subjects to a lighter note. I noticed that the Democrats in the 118th US Congress have decided to promote James (“Jim”) Patrick McGovern (D-MA 2nd District) to be a leading spokesman.
In 2009, I flew from Frankfurt, Germany, to Boston, Massachusetts. I was in business class, and as we took off, the fellow sitting next to me asked where I was from. When I said I was an Australian, he instantly pulled me up “no, you’re not!” I explained that I was originally from Rhodesia, but I was now an Australian citizen. He said he had been invited to visit Zimbabwe by President Robert Mugabe and asked my opinion. I wanted to know who he was.
We introduced ourselves. He was Congressman Jim McGovern; I was intrigued; I had never met a Congressman before. He said he had been forced to cut a congressional tour of Afghanistan short to attend his friend, Senator Edward Kennedy’s funeral. One thing led to another, and I started drinking with Jim. He drank red wine, and I stayed with Black Label on the rocks.
I had just seen the movie Charlie Wilson’s War with Tom Hanks, and I asked if he had ever met him. He enthusiastically described Charlie Wilson as one of his best friends. I’m not sure whether Charlie Wilson had deceased at that point. In any event, Jim raved about his friend Charlie Wilson. It impressed me. Jim McGovern is a very likeable fellow and a great conversationalist.
Without much explanation, we correctly assessed each other. Jim represented a very liberal 2nd District in Massachusetts, and I am a conservative-libertarian. All I can say is that we discussed a wide range of topics, and I didn’t detect any disagreements or the slightest discomfort.
I must have made a good impression because he seemed genuine when he apologised for not being able to continue our short friendship. He told me he would be extremely busy over the Kennedy funeral period and was having dinner with the Clintons that night. He asked if I would be visiting Washington, DC, and handed me a card with a number. “Call that number in DC, and they will take care of you”.
I met my wife in Boston and told her about Jim McGovern. She replied that she had watched Edward Kennedy’s funeral cortege pass through Boston that afternoon. In DC, I called the number so kindly provided. A member of Jim’s DC staff showed Jacki and me through both Congressional Houses, that is to say, the House of Representatives and the Senate, in live sessions.
I have followed Jim’s political career from a distance ever since. Until very recently, after the 117th Congress, he was barely ever visible in Congress. In 2023 and in the 118th Congress, Jim seems to have been thrust into the limelight. Republicans like and respect him. He is a very likeable fellow. And here is the kicker; is it possible that Jim McGovern, given the dearth of leadership in the Democratic Party, is being groomed for bigger things in 2024?
By Will Keys
2 thoughts on “BALTOPS 22 a Disaster”
A good analysis. Thank you.
Read Stephen Mitford Goodson. Murdered?
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