Sunday, December 13, 2009

National Security

Speaking of Andrew Bacevich…

”Al Qaeda operatives, hunkered down in their caves, pose no more than a modest threat. As for the Taliban, unless they manage to establish enclaves in places like New Jersey or Miami, the danger they pose to the United States falls several notches below the threat posed by Cuba, which is no threat at all.”

  The Vigil

Song from the Platte River
Brewer & Shipley

I was freezing on the banks of Platte River
And I was thinking of General Custer and his last stand
And I bowed my head, what has he done
He’s got my freedom on the run


I was thinking of the measure of my weakness
Like so many I condemn and do not know
And I bowed my head, what have we done
We've got our freedom on the run

The Vigil post has more of Bacevich’s thoughts. It's a good read. (I could have sworn that I did a post on an interview Bill Moyers did with Andrew Bacevich - someone I posted was a rare rational voice - actually both of them - but I cannot find it.)

Of course, the threat to our national security is the pretense under which we will (and have) forever interfere in worlds that are better left alone. In a very real way, of course, Afghanistan does hold that threat – so we're not really being lied to. They’re just admitting partial truth.

Honestly, I don’t understand why they don’t just tell the whole truth. In fact, I think the American people would rally behind the whole truth much better than we are backing this partial truth – which so many see as false. They see it as false because they are only looking at the idea that a backward country with nothing (unless – and this is a big deal – UNLESS it has our monetary/black ops/military backing) could pose any (military/political) threat to our nation.

No, that’s not the threat. The threat is that posed if we don’t control the world’s oil supply. If a country with the possibility of mounting a bigger, more powerful, military apparatus should get that control, should be able to deny us the oil we need to support our own military, our national security is dead in the water.

Americans would rally around the loss of military supremacy. We don’t really care about anyone else’s “freedom”. Hell, we’re not even that concerned with our own. What we want is to know that we have the most powerful military on the planet and all the things that require a constant and large oil supply. Transportation, trucking of goods, to be warm in the winter and cool in the summer. We must remember to read into the phrase “national security” our way of life. And while I’m on this tack…I honestly believe that when the oil is finally used up, our corporations will pull out the alternative energies they already have patented.

Whether we use it or not, we have to have control of the oil, so that another country which might possibly amass a more powerful military arsenal, is prevented from doing so.

”The conquest of Afghanistan had been planned since at least 12 February 1998”

Despite concerns about the Taliban, Unocal continued to develop the project from 1996 through 1998. Taliban representatives reportedly met with Unocal representatives in February 1997 in Washington D.C. and in November 1997 in Houston, Texas. Unocal later described these meetings as efforts "to educate them about the benefits such a pipeline could bring" to their "poor and war-torn country."

  footnote Fahrenheit

And natural gas.

December, 2002: An agreement has been signed in the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, paving the way for construction of a gas pipeline from the Central Asian republic through Afghanistan to Pakistan.


Turkmenistan has some of the world's greatest reserves of natural gas, but still relies on tightly controlled Russian pipelines to export it.


But investors will be very cautious about putting serious money into Afghanistan when the central government in Kabul still has only limited influence in the regions the pipeline would cross.


The building of the trans-Afghanistan pipeline has been under discussion for some years but plans have been held up by Afghanistan's unstable political situation.


And so it goes.

....but hey, do what you will anyway.


  1. m,
    good post. A lot of people understand the war(s) are about oil,unfortunately they don't think it all the way through.They don't get that we want to have our hands on the spigot,they think it was to grab the oil for ourselves so we can have lower gas prices!

    That amazes me when I hear it.Where do they think Texaco/Chevron/the rest of the SOB's profits come from? Our own oil which is sold at market prices.

    I know our oil companies support grabbing the oil but they want it to stay where it is-in the ground.

    I'm of two minds right now about energy when the oil runs out.IF there are workable alternative energy sources then I agree with you-the big guys already have their hand in the cookie jar and will ride to the rescue with assured huge profits.

    My other thought is an awful fear that their is no workable alternative energy source and we'll be like a car full of unbelted passengers with the brakes slammed on.

    So I really hope the greedy bastards have something up their sleeves.

    Last time I read about it that BTC pipeline going from Azerbaijan to Georgia to Turkey which we were planning on using to cut Russia out wasn't doing near as well as we need it to,to justify the payout for it.

    That whole pipeline thing is shortsighted and stupid. Just let them go thru Russia and Iran and accept the fact we've slipped a little.Maybe a lot. We could lift the sanctions on Iran and trade with them,they are a young nation (half of population under 15) who could benefit from our investment and we could export a lot to them.

    Which is why (IMO) Israel has such a hardon for Iran. Once we realize we don't need Israel, they're an albatross,and should we then realize how much we could benefit from dealings with Iran-Israel is out. Iran could be our new cop on the beat, like they were before. They wouldn't hesitate to throw Hamas and Hizbuallah under the bus cause they do what's best for themselves.

    Ok what the hell do I know.

  2. well, what do i know for that matter. but it does seem to me that people don't bother to think very deeply into complex issues. at least i try to think as deeply as is possible for me. our 'leaders' lead us around by the nose, because we don't seem to have the capacity to think. we just react, and we do that based upon our emotions.

    anyway, i once got an email from someone proudly proclaiming that she doesn't buy her gas from any of those companies that use foreign oil - she buys from valero which uses good old american oil.

    valero. does that sound like an english name to you? anyway, it made me curious, and so i looked up what sources of oil the various gasoline sellers have in their product. they ALL had foreign oil, in differing degrees, and while valero did have less than the others. still, doubtless she heard somewhere (perhaps from the valero salesman?) that valero doesn't buy foreign oil and never thought to check that out.

    personally, i always tried to buy from citgo, because i figured the venezuelan people could use all the help they could get (even though citgo is privately owned - or at least it was when i was buying it). since hurrican ike, we don't have any more citgos around my area. so now i buy gas wherever there's a station when i realize i need gas.

    it's global business and they're none of them thinking about the planet.

    when i was living in mexico in 2005, i found myself apologizing for bush and the war often enough. one wise young man said to me, "you don't have to apologize. don't worry about it. war is just a business."

    sad but true.

    thanks much for your comments.


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