To learn more about today’s events in Europe, look at these past posts

Summary:  The current political and regime in Europe has erupted from its long slow burn into low flames, with the elections this weekend in France and Greece.  Unless its leaders do the unexpected, taking bold and large-scale actions to further unify Europe, then a raging bonfire seems likely to consume the current order.  That’s been the forecast of the FM website for the past five years.  Here we review those posts.

Most of the content on the FM website provides two services:  analysis and forecasting. The record shows that we do a good job (see Predictions – how do they look now?)  But when events catch up with our forecasts, we do a poor job of reminding readers of our forecast.  So as the pace of change accelerates for Europe, and Greece makes decisions about its destiny, we list posts that can help you understand what’s happening in Europe.

Here are links, by topic.

(1)  Best live source for news about the Greek crisis:

(2)  Forecasting the crisis in Europe:

  1. The post-WWII geopolitical regime is dying. Chapter One , 21 November 2007 — Why the current geopolitical order is unstable, describing the policy choices that brought us here.
  2. Can the European Monetary Union survive the next recession?, 11 July 2008

(3)  A look at our forecasts: Forecasts – possible futures for America and the World

(4)  Posts specifically about Greece:

  1. A great speech by the PM of Greece. How soon until an American President says similar words?, 3 March 2010
  2. The EU does Kabuki for Greece. Is it the next domino to fall?, 14 April 2010
  3. Important:  Former Central Bank Head Karl Otto Pöhl says bailout plan is all about ‘rescuing banks and rich Greeks’, 20 May 2010
  4. Hot news! The Wehrmacht failed to take Greece. Now Germany tries again, with a different method., 28 January 2012
  5. Europe has chosen a harsh future.  All the paths for Greece lead into darkness., 24 February 2012
  6. A note from Athens: Feeling on the ground has palpably changed, 1 March 2012 — A clear sign that the Greek people were ready for change, for a gamble with their fate

(5)  Analysis and forecasts about the crisis in Europe, reporting their slow march to the cliff:

  1. The periphery of Europe – a flashpoint to the global economy, 8 February 2010
  2. Governments cannot go bankrupt, 2 April 2010 — But they can default.
  3. About the Euro crisis: the experts are wrong; the German people are right., 7 May 2010
  4. The Fate of Europe, nearing the point of decision, 13 September 2011
  5. Europe drifts towards the brink of a cataclysm, 26 September 2011
  6. Delusions about easy fixes for Europe, dreaming during the calm before the storm, 30 September 2011
  7. Every day the new world emerges, yet we see it not.  Like today, as Europe begs China for loans, 15 September 2011
  8. Is Europe primed for chaos, as it was in July 1914?, 7 October 2011
  9. Today Europe’s leaders took another step towards the edge of the cliff, 27 October 2011
  10. Where to from here, Europe?  Some experts share their views., 8 November 2011
  11. Status report on Europe’s slow re-birth (first, the current system must die), 10 November 2011
  12. Europe begins its endgame.  Watch and learn, for Europe’s problems are the world’s., 11 November 2011
  13. Looking ahead to see the new shape of Europe, 22 November 2011
  14. Europe passes the last exit.  A great crisis lies ahead., 21 February 2012

28 thoughts on “To learn more about today’s events in Europe, look at these past posts”

  1. robertobuffagni

    Please look at this video. The secretary of “Golden Dawn” talks (ehm…) to the press.

    1. Good speech without teleprompter and very smart. unlike our great leaders.

      Against bail out – check.
      Against flooding country with a whole bunch of zulus from all over the world – check.
      Against media –lapdog of establishment – check.

      After 50 years of switching leftwing radicals in power and bringing country to the present state of things he may be has a chance.

  2. Ole C G Olesen

    In the midst of the debacle .. and all the commentaries out of Anglosaxonia :

    HOW did it happen … that the European Banking System … went BANCRUPT .. thereby forcing the European Gouvernments to bail their banks out this process spending most of the Money the states had at their disposal … and then some more ?

    The EUROPEAN Banks lost most of their Capital .. on the US HOUSING BUBBLE …. enticed to invest in these financial instruments by…. the TRIPPLE A RATING bestowed upon these debt papers … by the US RATING AGENCIES !

    The European Banks are the biggest LENDERS in the World … The LOSS sustained by them in the USA eroded the general foundation for that position ….

    Was THAT … a PLANNED EVENT .. one could ask oneself ? …

    In order to DESTROY a threatening competitor .. which could not be tolerated .. as it was becoming an ALTERNATIVE and threatened to channel the usual capital streams away from a currency system .. which in NO WAY can be without steady inflow of capital from abroad … in order NOT to go Bancrupt ?

    I mean a daily capital need to the tune of 4 Billion Dollars .. is still ..some kind of money .. especially if You need that amount of FOREIGN capital.. in order ..not to go bancrupt !

    I leave the answers to these questions .. to the interior of the informed readers minds … that place which is IMPOSSIBLE to cheat …. really … if You are not a fanatic …

  3. Ole C G Olesen

    And a study regarding International financial crisis in a recent historical perspective please look at below: “The International Transmission of Financial Crises before World War II: Was there Contagion?“, Michael D. Bordo and Antu P. Murshid (Rutgers University), 1 November 1999

    It is interesting for the reader to note.. that almost ALL global financial crisis events have their ORIGIN out of the ANGLOSAXON SPHERE : the UK and the USA … and most often have lead to a REACTION … and WAR !

    1. That’s not, strictly speaking, correct. And to the extent that it is correct, it might not be meaningful.

      (a) Many global financial crashes have non US/UK causes (note “cause” is a vague term when dealing with such complex phenomena). The Austrian bank Credit-Anstal closed in May 1931, often considered the start of the Great Depression. The 1997-98 crash started in East Asia, spread globally — although it hit mostly emerging nations. And so forth.

      (b) Since London and New York have been the world’s geopolitical and financial centers for several centuries, it’s natural that many financial events surface there — although their initial sparks may originate elsewhere.

  4. Ole C G Olesen

    The ” Asian Crisis ” was purely and surely based on the never-ending american necessity for Capital .. the US were at that time in a hard corner.. and smeared it off ..on the Asians .. im not that old yet.. that i do not remember… and the Asians have recognized that .. and promised themselves… NEVER to allow the US to repeat that maneuver ! Thats why they have hoarded CAPITAL !
    The Austrian Credit Anstalt event was ignited by demands of payments out of the US … as far as I remember.. right ….
    So … it stands as said ..MOST of recent ( last 200 Years ) Financial Crisis events have their pure origin in the Anglosaxon world..
    ALL of the times based.. as today … on these countries spending MORE than they produce … rmb just the US consumes approx 75 % of ALL CAPITAL IN THE WORLD available for lending … this has been a fact for as long as I can remember …

    1. I believe that’s an oversimple version of history. Can you cite any supporting studies for your view of the Asian crisis as “surely based on the never-ending american necessity for Capital”? I don’t even know what that means.

      The other example, Credit Anstalt, was not that simple. Weak since 1929, losses in the Austrian economy meant that much of its loan portfolio was at risk. In May 1931 Baron Rothscild ordered write-downs of the loans (a common practice precipitating credit crunches in 1929-32); the resulting weakness in the Bank’s balance sheet sparked deposit withdrawals. Aprox half of its deposits were foreign. France refused aid unless Austria ended its proposed credit union with Germany (mixing politics into the already complex economic crisis). Germany was in the midst of its own crash. Things went downhill from there.

      Governor Harrison of the New York Federal Reserve Bank wrote to Montagu Norman, Governor of the Bank of England: “This is the beginning of much to come!” He was right.

      For details see The Crash and Its Aftermath: A History of Securities Markets in the United States by Barrie A. Wigmore (1985)

  5. Ole C G Olesen

    PS … and the current “Extortion ” of Money from overseas.based on Military Might. is an EXACT paralel to the methods of the ” ATHENIANS ” more than 2000 years ago… and led to the destruction of Athens !

  6. Ole C G Olesen

    Fabius … I consider you too intelligent … not to KNOW … that what I say the TRUTH

    I also am aware that You are very patriotic .. and there is nothing wrong with that .. except makes a person BLIND
    But You are right ..the US does not OPENLY threaten Europe for ex with direct WAR ( they reserve such to for ex Iraq and Iran …where it been deemed necesary in order to keep dominance over the FLOW of OIL .( as well as to assist Israel ) . and other places where they can get away with military intimidation and raw force …. for which there is ample evidence in the whole of South America and the Caribean ! As well as attempted Asia ..ending with the final DEFEAT in Saigon )

    In Europe it hasnt been necesary yet.. but the US maintains You rightfully demonstrate somewhere else in this publication.. an enourmous HOST of Military Bases .. almost ..everywhere ANY …. ANY … intelligent person … understands the implication of THAT ! Especially a military person at least aught to know !

    It is called …INTIMIDATION !

    When Charles deGaulle demanded GOLD instead of DOLLARS .. the USA ran away from its promise to redeeme Dollars with Gold … because the USA couldnt afford Pay real Money They could only afford to pay with printed paper …( same as the US does today ! ) De Gaulle then wanted to change his Dollars in the Global Market ..for GOLD .. Also that did not suit the USA ..and THAT … is the ” EXTORTION ” ..i speak of .. same tactics as the UK used .. when that Nation was at the helm … What did de Gaule do that time ? He demanded the USA Military …. OUT of France ! And the world held its breath .. for a moment .But the USA in the end did not DARE not to do as requested…. but otherwise continued its fraudulent practice of paying with NOTHING for something… as it does TODAY ! In their Heart .. every informed american knows this… but when it comes to cash and living standards the easy way .. few things can keep a people going … as that !

    Its really NICE to get things for free.. and it has been going on for so long time many amewricans almost consider the state of things.. as their superior right… to enjoy living standards way beyond what they earn by their own labour !
    I was quite young at that time .. I was adamantly pro – USA at that time ( which I … NAIVELY have been for a very big part of my life ) and believed the anglosaxon Media propaganda that de Gaulle ..almost was liased with the evil Soviets. The Media did NOT mention the real cause of the controversy … at all …. Many years later ..I learned the TRUTH !

    So .. come on .. dont ask for things ..which are OBVIOUS to anyone …who can THINK

    1. (1) Can you give some examples of “extortion from overseas based on military might”? Please no flights of rhetoric. A simple example or two will suffice.

      (2) “It is called …INTIMIDATION !”

      Perhaps. But intimidation is not extortion.

      (3) “When Charles deGaulle demanded GOLD instead of DOLLARS the USA ran away from its promise to redeeme Dollars with Gold”

      Almost every nation went off the gold during the 20th century. And that’s not extortion, either.

      (4) “So .. come on .. dont ask for things ..which are OBVIOUS to anyone …who can THINK”

      OK, so we should assume you have no examples?

  7. Ole C G Olesen

    I have given You examples.. and You have the “Example ” right in front of You … summarized in the sentence : being able to DEMAND to pay with NOTHING … for SOMETHING . THat is only possible due to the military might of the USA and the unspoken threat based on that …. or do You think ….lets say Greece ..could get away with similar ?Historically this was exactely what also old Athens did !
    The DIRECT military approach You can find across the board in all of the Carib and South America …( or as exemplified in Iraq / Iran …in Asia we can name Hawai / Philipines .. ahh .. there are so many examples .. that I run short of space ) I can reccomend You to read a somewhat different narrative of the current political history just to see the whole issue ..with some other eyes than american ( a sound principle in all study: to read opposing views ! ) is an excellent and very thorough one … the latter quit surprising …also to me… in its QUALITY and DEPTH coverage of events : Guia del Mundo … out of Uruguya …….. please for your own sake .. try and take a look at this publication.. I think You will be as surprised as I was… at the thoroughness of description without thereby saying ..that I agree with all stated in this publication
    … and just for info: I am NOT and have never been a ” socialist” … never will be … but i can see quality where i find it… for ex also in the publication : ” Fabius Maximus “… :)
    …and with this .. have a nice weekend … and keep up the Spirit !

    1. Finally some specifics.

      (1) “or as exemplified in Iraq / Iran …in Asia we can name Hawai / Philipines”

      We didn’t extort anything from Iraq. In fact, we got nothing from Iraq. We destroyed a lot, killed many, overthrew their government and installed a new one (probably eventually an Islamic tyranny), built some nice bases for them. Got nothing.

      We have not extorted anything from Iran. We attempt to limit its geopolitical influence, but that’s a different thing.

      (2) “in Asia we can name Hawai / Philipines”

      We took Hawaii in 1893. We took the Philippines in 1902. I was looking for something more current, not 119 and 110 years ago.

  8. Ole C G Olesen

    PS … Guia del Mundo … is in Spanish .. i stumbled over it first time in a Danish Translation … i am sure it is translated into English also …

  9. Ole C G Olesen

    PPS … additionally … as a GUIDE to the World … the mentioned Web-site extraordinary .. in the thorough overview it gives ..also about esoteric places .. full of information .. You will have hard to come by otherwise …

    1. Re: Asia Times

      It is a useful website, offering non-consensus perspectives on current events and sometimes actual reporting (they’ve broken their share of stories). But its content includes quite a bit of wild speculation presented as factual reporting. So readers can become less-informed than they started.

  10. Ole C G Olesen

    Oil Price has been denominated in Dollars …and still is .. for a big part . It is imperative for the US economy to keep it that way thereby making the US Dollar to the Reserve Currency it is. The benefit of that status has ment approx between 1 – 3 % boost of the US economy ..on a yeartly basis .measured on a GDP Basis .
    Then there is the Black-mail option : ” do as we want …or else …” Fabius … i think … anyone can understand the FINANCIAL and POWER importance of US dominance of the OIL of this world. Unfortunately for the US this influence is vaning fast these days. This process is and will be opposed by ALL means by the US … but in my opinion that is a loosing game .. Time will show !
    But above was the REAL reason for the US MILITARY ENGAGEMENT in the Middle East
    Ofc apart from the coincidence of serving Iraels strategic Interests the same time

    1. I think we now can draw some conclusions about Olesen’s comments. When asked to support one of his claims, he cannot do so — but makes more claims. These are largely myths, asserted with confidence rather than evidence. He is well-supplied with these, as the Internet is well-stocked with fevered guessing — which becomes fact in the minds of some.

      When asked to explain how the US does “extortion from overseas based on military might” he refers to our reserve currency status. This is a commonplace misunderstanding, drawing on the widespread ignorance about basic economics among Americans. The easy reply is to ask for evidence (not inspired guessing) that we’re deploying our military to maintain the US dollar.

      Reserve currency status is often called a “poisoned chalice”, tempting but destructive — leading to an overvalued currency and trade deficits. In fact sensible nations do not want their currency to become a reserve currency. Successful nations, like China, tend to have undervalued currencies and trade surpluses. Nations with strong currencies often seek to depress their value (examples today are Japan and the Swiss). Keeping German’s currency weak is a prime benefit to them of the euro, one reason German seeks to maintain the EMU (they’re not helping Greece because they like Greeks).

      Only Americans retain their childish pride in the strength of the currency. So the efforts of the Treasury to weaken the dollar are done quietly, least they arrouse emotional public opposition.

      For more about this see The falling US dollar – bane or boon?, 14 October 2009.

  11. Ole C G Olesen

    Fabius… I am NOT a SOPHIST .. and do not need to be .. in order to validate my claims. You are.. in Your response.. attempting to cast smoke-screens over what the REALITY is And the Reality is .. that the USA would be BROKE ..ON THE SPOT .. should it loose its reserve currency status .because the USA would Not any longer be able to PAY WITH PRINTED MONEY .. which has NO VALUE ( IOUs as this is termed over the pond ) ! The Foreign Reserves of the USA ar not much bigger than that of my native country…Denmark
    if we do not count the Gold …aleegedly held ..somewhere . That would put an immidiate stop for ALL IMPORTS to the USA … may be in the long run ..a POSITIVE development for the USA … take a look at the latest Currency & Trading Balances
    March 2012…. 51.something BILLION USD …. MINUS … 1 more poisened sip !

    As You rightfully say … reserve currency status is a Poisoned chalice… and the USA has been drinking of that chalice .. to an historically unprecedented degree… for ,,far too long …. but is DEMANDING to continue to do so .. and uses ALL and EVERY means to be able to do so .. including MILITARY MIGHT !

    And that is one of the many reasons ..why the USA .. politically , morally and socially is BROKE ! And WHEN the USA finally tumbles .. note ..WHEN … not IF … the USA will ofc run away from any debt they have.. and the only thing which prevents them from taking the consequences of that … is … the USA military Capability ! And I can assure .. that EVERYONE IN THE WORLD .. with the smallest insigt and brain function.. is NOT in doubt .. about above

    1. “should it loose its reserve currency status because the USA would Not any longer be able to PAY WITH PRINTED MONEY .. which has NO VALUE”

      There are too many misconceptions here for easy analysis. I suggest a good Economics textbook.

      (1) The US dollar is overvalued, as shown by the trade and current account deficits. Revaluation and some simple public policy changes and we’d be back in balance.

      (2) Almost all currencies in the world are “fiat” currencies, and have “no value” by your idiosyncratic standards. However, as Galileo may have said, still they work in any sense that matters.

      (3) The US government debt has value. Our debt levels are lower than those of many other developed nations, our demographics better, etc.

  12. Ole C G Olesen

    PS.. and i must say .. i had expected something else ..something of more quality .. than SMOKESCREEN TALK about Reserve Currencies.. and their role etc.. What You present is mumble dumble talk ! You dont even comment the FACT that this status has benefitted the US with apporximately 1 – 3 % of GDP … for now many decenniums .. and You pretend ..that i have not presented factual examples for what I said … I HAVE …. Several ! Such is rhethoric manipulation ! The commies used that a lot back in older times in Europe . I am NOT an uneducated reader .. You have to do … BETTER …. You owe that … to Yourself and to YOUR AUDIENCE !

    1. “and You pretend ..that i have not presented factual examples for what I said … I HAVE …. Several ”

      Then please state them again, examples of “extortion from overseas based on military might”. Names and dates.

  13. 1) Fabius har ret, bag dine argumenter op med fakta.

    2) Det giver ikke dine argumenter mere vægt at sammenligne Fabius med sovietkommunister og beskylde ham for retorisk manipulation.

    3) Din præsentation af hvad du har af sige, din syntax og grammatik, får havd du skriver til at fremstå som stream-of-conciousness-ramblings. Din brug af konstant fremhævelse af ord ved at ‘råbe’ dem via store bokstaver giver også et indtryk af ubalance.

    Derfor, tag dig nu sammen mand, der er ingen grund til at blive hys bare fordi blog-ejeren ikke lader sig overtale af dine ikke dokumenterede fabulationer. Du burde også overveje at strukturer hvad du skriver bedre, med særlig hensyntagen til brug af grammatik.

    Du kan afskrive det her som at jeg bare er en tarvelig grammatik-nazi der bruger ad hominem angreb istedet for at forholde mig til substansen i hvad du skriver. Det vil være selvbedrag hvis du kommer til den konklusion.

  14. Ole C G Olesen

    Aabenbart laeser du heller ikke hvad jeg skriver : Jeg har givet flere exempler paa at USA anvender MILITAER MAGT til at beskytte .sine financielle interesser … eller opnaa sine oekonomiske maal. ..for ex i Mellem Oesten … Der er ingen anden forklaring paa USAs engagement i det omraade !

    Og det var det der blev diskuteret . Jeg har endvidere forklaret .. hvorfor ! Og HVORFOR man ..for at undgaa Bankerot af den amerikanske stat .. som forbruger langt mere end den producerer og derfor er noedt til at laane .. for tiden 4 Milliarder Dollar dagen .. fra Udlandet ! for at holde skuden flydende … fortsaetter udpresningen af den oevrige verden ! DET er en 360 graders indsats .. ogsa paa medie fronten hvor man sidder tungt paa styret.

    Fabius lader som om jeg ikke har bragt exempler. Det er USANDT og der er mange mange flere .. saa mange at jeg som naevnt i mit indlaeg ..ikke har plads til dem ..paa denne beskedne spalteplads Proev engang at gaa ind paa den danske oversaettelse af Guia del Mundo ..laes lidt om hvad USA gjorde i Den Dominikanske Republik .. ( og jeg kan oplyse at min viv er fra det land.. og kommer fra en fattig ( materielt set ) bjerglandsby … saa jeg ved at hvad der siges er KORREKT )

    her er linken :

    Og i samme publikation … og mange mange andre publikationer kan du laese spalte op og spalte ned med exempler paa mine paastande . Min meget gode ven har for kort siden begaaet en bog som han har kaldt ” Zen at War ” .. han ville egentlig have kaldt den ” The 100 Year pacific War ” Tag en kig paa den.. det bliver du klogere af her ( og tilgiv min ven at han elsker og beundrer Japan )

    Zen in War by Gábor Fabricius (2011)

    Det soergelige er.. at Fabius ..og de fleste amerikanere .. inderst inde ..udmaerket godt ved .. hvordan tingene haenger sammen.
    Men som ogsaa sagt .. naar det kommer til gratis goder man har vaeret vandt til..og nu afhaenger af for at kunne bevare den levestandard man ikke ved egen indsats ville kunne have … ja saa reagerer mennesker ..som de goer. Proev at fortael en mand at hans hus kun er halvt saa meget vaerd som han gaar rundt of tror !

    Ikke sandt … Laengere er den ikke.

  15. Ole C G Olesen

    Examples .. Names and Dates … again : … and it isnt pretty !

    Current and since the Suez Crisis 1956 : the whole Oil producing Middle East … Multiple military interventions

    Iraq for example still red hot… i believe … The US armed and encouraged Iraq to attack Iran .. including condoning the use of Nerve gas. The US allied itself with a sadistic Killer , Saddam Hussein in order to achieve its goals and had no scrouples at all ! Later they killed him .. when THAT became opportune. And ofc invaded and occupied the same country… Iraq … a long and bloody war .. it still is ! Why.? . … for Control over OIL and establishment and later preservation of the US Reserve currency status.. which the US achieved after … betraying and then taking over from the UK and France … in the Middle East ! The US in 1956 claimed it was in the name of democracy and respect for sovereignity of states…. BULLSHIT ! It was in order to take over the European Oil Business in the Middle East !

    In order to get Nato to attack Afghanistan a big SWINDLE was devised .. for this attack to be accepted .. by the American people and the Nato Allies. As was also ..fully proven … the case in Iraq.. There never were any ” Weapons of Mass destruction” …in Iraq which was the official casus belli !

    There are SUSPICIONS .. and those suspicions are voiced by intelligent and rational people that most of what was brought to market by the US as to what occurred Sept 9/11 is not correct . well well … anyone can understand ..if suspicions have just grains of truth that we NEVER will get to know .. what really happened . But seen in the light of deceits leading to war in Iraq.. absolutely possible .

    The US recruited and trained Osama bin Laden as well as all the people they now have to fight in Afghanistan … it has been ongoing for 10 Years…. As judged by their success.. one positive thing can be said about the US ..they trained their current opponents well … may be not so strange .. as the US really has long term experience in .. CLANDESTINE WAREFARE ! Covert Killing of opponents is and has been the “American ” way … also today .

    In the Caribian just as one of many examples : The Dominican Republic from start of 1900 and up until today ..including several US military occupations and militarily forced “Treaties ” Trujillo was put in power by the USA .. and after 30 years of diabolic dictatorship murdered by CIA , When an honest man then came to power ..he was removed with force .. by the USA and a close ally of Trujillo replaced him supported by US Bayonets so he could open the whole country for USA companies to exploit , When this dictator after years of exploitation was removed by the dominican people , his sucessor was kicked out by 35.000 AMERICAN Troops who in a brutal and blody killing subdued anyone opposed to the USA …. and so on and so forth .. The list of MILITARY SUBJUGATION in order to economically EXPLOIT by the USA is ENDLESS either Directly or by Proxy . !
    In Asia … lets take again the examples of the Philipines , of Hawai …of Vietnam …or China .. in the latter .. Chiang Kai Chek was nothing but a simple criminal, kept in power and armed by …. the USA …the dates for all events should by known by anyone with some current knowledge The Asian aspirations of the USA ended with the American DEFEAT … in Saigon .
    I presume I dont have to bring dates ?

    Fabius … do You need more examples ? Its not difficult .. cause the list is endless.. but ill stop here. But what really pisses me off.. is the TONE in which the US does its acts of MILITARY OPPRESSION .. . as well as the LIES ! The propaganda mantle of moral right .. .which the POWERS who are in the USA have succeeded in making the american people believe in… and also ME.. when I was young and NAIVE really is what makes me …. angry !

    So… Fabius Maximus… stop claiming that i have not given examples.. I have ! But I understand it is HARD .. for a patriotic american to look these truth about his own country in the face ! If it can be any consolation to you : also I … was decieved.. for a big part of my life and have had to re-evaluate most of what I have believed ..previously .

    1. Perhaps Olec is not good at understanding English (and appears to believe that making stuff up boldly is evidence). He said ““extortion from overseas based on military might”. Extortion is not “being bad”. It has a specific meaning. Extortion: obtaining money through force or threats. We didn’t obtain any material gain from other nations in most of the events he mentions, at least those since WWII (eg, we did gain from many of our early 20th century military interventions).

      Colonization and economic extraction of resources is extortion (broadly defined). “Economic oppression” (whatever that is) is not extortion, and ranting about it is not evidence.

      America didn’t occupy the Middle East, and did nothing when those nations nationalized their oil in the 1970s. We didn’t extort anything from Iraq after 2000, and certainly didn’t get oil (US companies got a small share of the contracts, through open bidding). We didn’t get anything. Not bases. Not even geopolitical advantage (Iran got that).

      In fact, Olec’s rant is almost 100% wrong. The distinguishing characteristic of the American empire — and the many military interventions that built and support it — is that it produces so few economic benefits to the US. An easy way to see this: successful empires run current account surpluses, as the money flowing back home exceeds the external costs to operate it. The US ran surpluses in the decades after WWII, with must of the world’s industry destroyed. That changed after they rebuilt. It was roughly in balanced from 1968-1976. Then began the steep deterioration. (note: many individuals, special interest groups, and businesses benefit. Our Empire is not a charitable project)

      We’re running a mad empire. Using our military power to extort resources would be morally bad (by some codes), but at least logical.

      BTW — The nations of the world hold foreign exchange reserves roughly indexed (the optimal strategy per finance theory). That is, in aggregate they hold each nation’s bonds roughly in proportion to those bonds share of the publicly traded global market. From another perspective, the largest nations financing our deficit do so to depress the value of their currencies and boost exports. Esp the two largest: China and Japan. Neither reason has anything to do with our military.

  16. Ole C G Olesen

    You are denying Facts plain to see for everyone .. to say it as it is .. with regretts .. Then .. any dicussion is …OVER !

    1. I have been the one citing facts. You have replied with nothing but floods of hot rhetoric, and repeated claims that you are correct and all right-thinking people agree with you.

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