…by Jonas E. Alexis
My dear colleague Michael Shrimpton and I generally part company on issues regarding the Middle East and Asia. In fact, we had a long dialogue about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan a few years ago.
My contention throughout was that my esteemed colleague perpetuated numerous claims which could easily be dismissed with sober thought, historical documentation, and logical consistency. Shrimpton was a proponent of the Iraq War, and he was arguing that America had to send more troops in the region.
I was arguing that the Iraq War was completely based on colossal hoaxes, complete fabrications, misleading notions, and deliberate lies. I further added that the war itself will cost America at least six trillion dollars, so it would be ridiculous to send more troops in the Middle East to die for basically Israel.
I even exhaustively showed the scholarly documentations to back up all the extraordinary claims I made. When I pointed those sources out, Shrimpton responded by saying that the sources are all bias, even though he hadn’t read them or responded to the arguments presented. His response was one assertion built upon another assertion without an iota of evidence. So I could not get anywhere at all.
In his recent article, Shrimpton makes the claim that Donald Trump
“was right with respect to cancel the summit with the guy with the funny hairdo. Kim Jong-Un is clearly in no mood to make concessions. The re-arranged meeting in Singapore will be a waste of time. The Norks are determined to continue with the nuclear program. The recent North/South Korea summit was a failure, achieving nothing except a photo-opportunity.”
These are again assertions. What is evidence for those assertions? Well, Shrimpton presented none. We need more than just assertion. We need evidence, consistency, and logical arguments. And with all due respect, it is foolish to say that Kim Jung-un is not serious about making a deal with the West and the United States in particular.
Any person with an ounce of common sense would take this great opportunity to sit down with Kim Jung-un and discuss serious issues. Whether he would agree or disagree is secondary. If he ends up disagreeing with a reasonable deal, then you would have enough evidence on the palm of your hand to condemn his regime.
The fact that Kim Jung-un was willing to have a frank dialogue is a reasonable step. We also know what they were planning to discuss. Here are some of them:
“(1) South and North Korea affirmed the principle of determining the destiny of the Korean nation on their own accord and agreed to bring forth the watershed moment for the improvement of inter-Korean relations by fully implementing all existing agreements and declarations adopted between the two sides thus far.
“(2) South and North Korea agreed to hold dialogue and negotiations in various fields including at high level, and to take active measures for the implementation of the agreements reached at the Summit.
“(3) South and North Korea agreed to establish a joint liaison office with resident representatives of both sides in the Gaeseong region in order to facilitate close consultation between the authorities as well as smooth exchanges and cooperation between the peoples.
“(4) South and North Korea agreed to encourage more active cooperation, exchanges, visits and contacts at all levels in order to rejuvenate the sense of national reconciliation and unity. Between South and North, the two sides will encourage the atmosphere of amity and cooperation by actively staging various joint events on the dates that hold special meaning for both South and North Korea, such as June 15, in which participants from all levels, including central and local governments, parliaments, political parties, and civil organizations, will be involved. On the international front, the two sides agreed to demonstrate their collective wisdom, talents, and solidarity by jointly participating in international sports events such as the 2018 Asian Games.
“(5) South and North Korea agreed to endeavor to swiftly resolve the humanitarian issues that resulted from the division of the nation, and to convene the Inter-Korean Red Cross Meeting to discuss and solve various issues including the reunion of separated families. In this vein, South and North Korea agreed to proceed with reunion programs for the separated families on the occasion of the National Liberation Day of August 15 this year.
“(6) South and North Korea agreed to actively implement the projects previously agreed in the 2007 October 4 Declaration, in order to promote balanced economic growth and co-prosperity of the nation. As a first step, the two sides agreed to adopt practical steps towards the connection and modernization of the railways and roads on the eastern transportation corridor as well as between Seoul and Sinuiju for their utilization.”
Kim Jung-un agreed to abide by those principles. Vladimir Putin has also pointed out that Kim Jung-un has done everything he had promised to do in order to sit down with the United States and talk. Putin declared: “Kim Jong Un on his part did everything he promised to do, even blew up some tunnels on their sites and after this we hear the US is canceling the meeting.”
Putin moved on to say: “We hope very much that dialogue will be revitalized, renewed, because without that we can’t hope for any kind of significant progress in solving this extraordinarily important issue.”
The best way to deal with any ideological conflict is through dialogue and a reasonable framework where both parties can agree to apply universal principles. This would be quite in line with what Kant calls the categorical imperative, which states:
“Act only according to that maxim by which you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law.”
This principle is pretty straightforward, and its application to the political landscape should also be straightforward. If US officials want to be serious, then they cannot impose a law on North Korea and then impose a completely different law on themselves and other government officials. It is irrational and inconsistent.
The simple fact is that the Neocons, the Zionist machine, and the war propaganda in the United States have never lived by universal principles. That’s how they end up destroying one country after another.
Moreover, the Neocons and war machine have already been discouraging any kind of frank dialogue between Trump and Kim Jung-un. Jeffrey A. Bader of the Neocon Think tank the Brookings Institute said that
“Trump should not honor Kim by visiting North Korea (though he might be tempted by what doubtless would be the largest and most lavish military parade in his honor he could ever experience).
“Traveling to Panmunjom, in the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, would also be undesirable, as it would be elevating Kim’s status by attending the meeting on his virtual grounds. Inviting Kim to the United States should be categorically ruled out, as Kim has done nothing to earn such an honor.
“Kim will be happy with a meeting that simply produces photo ops of the two smiling presidents and gushing media tributes to the new age of peace they are ushering in. The fact of the meeting itself is 90 percent of what Kim wants.”
So Trump cannot go to North Korea, and Kim Jung-un cannot come to the United States, according to the Neocon ideology. How do they want to resolve the conflict?
Well, for them it would be nice if the United States wipes out North Korea. The Israeli regime wanted the United States to do the same thing with Iran. In fact, Benjamin Netanyahu wanted to bomb Iran back in 2011. Netanyahu perpetuated one lie after another about Iran, even though those lies contradicted what the Mossad itself was saying about Iran.
Shrimpton moves on to assert that Iran “already has nuclear weapons. They’re plutonium-cored, using the plute the French shipped to Iran in 2003/4. France has a large black plutonium stockpile.” The evidence? Well, Shrimpton again presented none. Where can we find his sources? We just to trust him because he is telling the truth.
The only politician on the planet who has been perpetuating this colossal hoax is Benjamin Netanyahu, despite the fact that numerous scholarly sources have shown that this idea is complete forgery. In fact, if Israel plays by the same rule, then Israel would have told the world that it does have at least two hundred nuclear warheads down its basement. Netanyahu does not even want to address this issue! Israel does not even sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty!
So how can Israeli officials put a draconian principle on Iran when they don’t want to apply the same principle on themselves? Who are they really fooling? And it is really a rational position to say that “President Trump was absolutely right to scrap the Iran nuclear deal”? Moreover, to say that “John Bolton was an excellent choice for National Security Adviser” is beyond ridiculous.
Shrimpton doesn’t tell his readers that it was John Bolton who wrote an article in the New York Times in 2015 entitled, “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran.” To Bolton’s chagrin, Obama didn’t bomb Iran. In fact, Obama made a fairly reasonable deal which completely shocked the Neocons and the Israeli regime.
But the Neocons and other war propagandists weren’t about to give up easily. Bolton was even saying that America needs to bomb North Korea!
Bolton declared that “It’s a myth to think that a regime as irrational in our terms as North Korea or as extreme ideologically as Iran are going to be deterred” through peaceful resolution. Therefore, the only option is to bomb.
“I just think as citizens we’ve all got a responsibility to think about this, because if we don’t stop (nuclear proliferation) here, we’re not going to stop it anywhere.”
Bolton, as we have argued elsewhere, is one of the worst political whores and prostitutes to ever walk on the political platform. His bosses are essentially in Israel. Former UN ambassador Dan Gillerman declared when Bolton was in the White House during the Bush administration:
“John Bolton got in touch with me, calling to say, ‘You have to call your prime minister and tell him that Condi Rice sold you out to the French.’”
Bolton was so bad that Jimmy Carter had nothing good to say about him. In fact, Carter solemnly warned:
“Maybe one of the worst mistakes that President Trump has made since he’s been in office is his employment of John Bolton, who has been advocating a war with North Korea for a long time and even an attack on Iran, and who has been one of the leading figures in orchestrating the decision to invade Iraq. A disaster for our country.”
arter rightly said that his first advice to Trump would be that he needs to “fire John Bolton.” Why? Again Bolton is a complete mess. Take it from the Spokesman Review:
“Carl W. Ford Jr., former State Department intelligence chief, ex-Bolton underling and self-described ‘loyal Republican,’ told senators that Bolton is a ‘serial abuser’ of staff and called him a ‘quintessential kiss-up, kick-down sort of guy.’
“Ford described how Bolton tried to bully, intimidate and fire an analyst after he refused to sign off on a speech asserting that Cuba had biological weapons, a conclusion unsupported by intelligence. Never mind that twisting supposedly policy-free intelligence is downright dangerous for America. It was Bolton’s way or the highway.
“In another incident, a former government contractor testified that in 1994, Bolton threw a tape dispenser at her, made offensive comments about her weight, shouted threats, chased her down a Moscow hotel hallway, pounded on her door and ‘generally behave(d) like a madman.’”
One needn’t be an intellectual or historian to realize that perpetual wars breed perpetual hatred, and the Neocons have been producing exactly that for the better part of thirty years.
These people don’t give a damn about destruction, death, and perpetual bloodshed in the Middle East. In fact, they want to kill, steal, and destroy. If you doubt this, then ask Bill Kristol and Daniel Pipes. Scholar Michael MacDonald has documented:
“As [the Neocons] were mocking Clinton in the late 1990s as cowardly for his caution in the face of Saddam’s brutality, central Africa was engulfed in war and chaos. Around 5,400,000 people, mostly in Congo, perished in the convulsions and the starvation and disease they caused from 1998 to 2003.
“Yet the Weekly Standard, a reliable guide to neoconservative priorities, published just two stories on Congo during these years. In the same time span it published 279 articles on Iraq. Neoconservatives were bent on projecting power in the Middle East, not on engaging in humanitarian do-goodism.”
If Shrimpton wants us to take him seriously, he needs to stop positing one assertion after another and produce serious evidence and rigorous arguments. Unless he does that, then we are safe to say that he is erecting an ideological edifice for the war machine in the West.
-  We know some of the things Trump and Kim Jung-un were planning to discuss. See “Full text of Panmunjom Declaration,” Japan Times, April 27, 2018.
-  Emmanuel Kant, Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1959), 39.
-  See for example Stephen F. Hayes, “The Risks of Trump’s Meeting with Kim Jong-un,” Weekly Standard, March 9, 2018.
-  Jeffrey A. Bader, “9 things Trump should do before he meets with Kim Jong-un,” Brookings, March 12, 2018.
-  “Barak: Netanyahu was ready to bomb Iran in 2010, 2011,” Jewish Telegraphic Agency, August 21, 2015; “Ex-Defense Minister: Netanyahu Wanted To Attack Iran But Was Overruled,” Huffington Post, August 22, 2015; “Netanyahu urged Obama to bomb Iran,” Jerusalem Post, November 10, 2017; “Netanyahu’s threats to attack Iran ‘panicked’ Obama into nuke talks, author says,” Times of Israel, January 26, 2018.
-  “Leaked cables show Netanyahu’s Iran bomb claim contradicted by Mossad,” Guardian, February 23, 2015.
-  See for example Gareth Porter, Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare (Charlottesville, VA: Just World Books, 2014); Trita Parsi, Losing an Enemy: Obama, Iran, and the Triumph of Diplomacy (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2017); Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran, and the United States (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008); A Single Roll of the Dice: Obama’s Diplomacy with Iran (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2011); James Risen and Mark Mazzetti, “U.S. Agencies See No Move by Iran to Build a Bomb,” NY Times, February 24, 2012.
-  For scholarly studies on this, see Avner Cohen, The Worst-Kept Secret: Israel’s Bargain with the Bomb (New York: Columbia University Press, 2010); Israel and the Bomb (New York: Columbia University Press, 1998); Michael Karpin, The Bomb in the Basement: How Israel Went Nuclear and What That Means for the World (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2006).
-  John Bolton, “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran,” NY Times, March 25, 2015.
-  Trita Parsi, Losing an Enemy: Obama, Iran, and the Triumph of Diplomacy (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2017)
-  Mark Barrett, “Bolton: U.S. might have to attack North Korea,” USA Today, December 17, 2017.
-  Noga Tarnopolsky, “John Bolton Told Israel: ‘Condi Rice Sold You Out,’ Ex-Official Says,” Daily Beast, March 27, 2018.
-  Susan Page, “Jimmy Carter calls Trump’s decision to hire Bolton ‘a disaster for our country,’” USA Today, March 26, 2018.
-  Bronwyn Lance Chester, “John Bolton: the ultimate toxic boss,” Spokesman Review, June 11, 2005.
-  See for example Stefan Halper and Jonathan Clarke, America Alone: The Neo-Conservatives and the Global Order (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004); Murray Friedman, The Neoconservative Revolution: Jewish Intellectuals and the Shaping of Public Policy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005); Michael MacDonald, Overreach: Delusions of Regime Change in Iraq (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2014); John J. Mearsheimer, Why Leaders Lie: The Truth About Lying in International Politics (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011); John M. Schuessler, Deceit on the Road to War: Presidents, Politics, and American Democracy (New York: Cornell University Press, 2015); John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy (New York: Farrar & Straus, 2007).
-  Michael MacDonald, Overreach: Delusions of Regime Change in Iraq (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2014), 100.