The U.S. in Latin America: a history of imperial hubris.
[ Image Source ]
“Eleven score and fourteen years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in hypocrisy and dedicated to the proposition that all rich white men are created equal.”
With sadistic contempt, this new nation ripped from the hands of its natives the vast and fertile land that was to give birth to the first global empire ever to disfigure the world. By guile and arms, by diplomacy and poison, by corruption and disease, this nascent empire crushed all who stood in its way, leaving the people it miscalled Indians dead in unequal battle or to fade and die over generations on ever-shrinking, evermore-impoverished reservations. Even the empire’s staunchest and most able advocates could find no more polite phrase for this than “complete genocide,” begun by Christopher Columbus, perpetuated throughout colonial and U.S. history, and still in progress today.
As an empire must have land, so it must also have cheap labor. From this economic truism was born a “peculiar institution” that snatched Africans from amid their families and their homelands and made them a contumeliated commodity in history’s most abhorrent system of chattel slavery.
Thus a hegemony was born, an earth-bestriding eagle that has now fastened its talons deep within virtually every country of the world, tearing from each the vital resources that could bring prosperity to its people but instead merely further enrich the mercantile elite whose desires dictate imperial policy. The personnel change over time, but the principle is immutable: All the goods and virtues of the earth are the inalienable property of those who decide, in secret, the national policy of the hegemony to suit their own interest.
Consider the history of the United States in Latin America and the Middle East.
Since the time of the Monroe Doctrine, the U.S. has regarded the Americas as its birthright; it has not only striven to exclude, by overt policy, any influence from outside the region, but it has always sought to subvert, subdue and destroy, by covert policy, any movement toward local independence. Acting more often than not to further corporate power, the U.S. has overthrown elected governments in Honduras, Brazil and Chile. It has armed and trained tyrannical juntas in those countries as in El Salvador, Colombia and Nicaragua; it has also dispatched death squads to disappear dissidents in all of those countries. And in 2002, it sealed its enmity with Venezuela by backing an attempted coup against Hugo Chavez. Given this history, it is hardly surprising that Venezuela distrusts the U.S. and is avid to prepare defenses against what it considers an inevitable invasion.
Meanwhile, deeming ample petroleum also a right of empire, the U.S. has behaved equally badly in the Middle East, where there is hardly a country whose ruling elite is not a neocolonial puppet regime grown fat by selling national resources to U.S. corporations while repressing its people. And when, in 1953, one of them (in this case Iran) elected a president who was less pliable, the CIA ousted him in favor of the brutal Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, at the behest of the company now known as BP.
Thanks to this sordid chronicle of corruption, the U.S. elite has merited what it begins to perceive today: a new entente among the unregarded nations once its balkanized satrapies directed at building an economic, diplomatic and military bloc intended precisely to restore a measure of global balance, and restrain and chasten an empire gone mad with hubris. From today, the former subject states of Latin America and the Middle East have formed an alliance; it does not threaten the United States, for to do so would be suicide, but it will oppose and constrain its froward ambitions.