Matt Taibbi got it a bit wrong. The "great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money" isn't just Goldman Sachs. It's the gigantic criminal enterprise that includes the entire Wall Street/Washington DC Axis of Evil and their International Bankster/Corporate co-conspirators. It is sucking the world dry and strangulating it into submission.
Empire is not enough. The satanic concept has been described in euphemistic jargon as Full Spectrum Dominance or The Shock Doctrine on Steroids. It is driven by shameless immorality, limitless greed, almost-cosmic corruption, breathtaking arrogance combined with astonishing ignorance, a collective malevolent uncontrollable psychopathy and lunatic lust for power, not to mention hate, paranoia and racism. Its terrible tools include massively destructive violence and brutality, terror, torture, murder, brain-numbing propaganda, almost pornographically intrusive surveillance, a Mt. Everest of lies and dishonesties, and every imaginable manner of fraud, thievery, trickeration and con. American Exceptionalism, indeed!
Tootling tunes of "Yankee doodle dandy","freedom" and "democracy" like a 4th of July fife & drum corps, the chest-pounding American Gigantasaurus big-foots across the globe leaving a trail of tears and collateral damage almost everywhere.
If you are keeping score at home, since World War 2, the last real war America actually won (with more than a helping hand from the Soviet Union), the good ole US of A has attempted to overthrow the governments of more than 50 countries; meddled in the elections of over two dozen; covertly or clandestinely infiltrated numerous nations around the globe; loudly and brazenly invaded others; bombed civilian populations and infrastructures with all manner of deadly explosives including chemical and biological WMDs (and a couple of nukes!); concocted or supported coups against at least a dozen legitimate governments; tried to assassinate a number of foreign leaders and succeeded more than a few times; trained and turned loose death squads on virtually every continent; and trashed and looted the economies of sovereign states all over the world. You can add the never ending "war on terror" and the new old Cold War to the diabolical dance card.
Lately, however, the chickens have begun coming home to roost from the monstrous war crime that was the "Lie-raq War". Pimped, pumped up and promoted to a fare-thee-well after 9/11 by the Bush-Cheney regime of unindicted co-conspirators as a righteous "cake-walk" campaign to preserve "our freedoms and way of life" from Islamist fiends and the WMDs they didn't have, the Bush-Cheney Lie-raq War utterly destroyed that hapless country, its infrastructure and functioning society. More than 4,500 US dupes...uh...troops were killed and over 32,000 wounded (both mentally and physically) for no legitimate reason. They stopped counting Iraqi casualties after 200,000. Four million Iraqis were made refugees. And maybe $1 trillion (who's counting?) was war profiteered out of Iraq's hellish misery and our own gullible citizens’ constantly propagandized fear that "Al-Qaeda is coming! Al-Qaeda is coming!"
Mission Accomplished. Not exactly.
In a stunning bit of regional blowback from that 8-year-long Iraq war crime and the current brutal 3-years-and-still-going-strong Syrian Civil War against the creepy dictator Bashar Al-Assad (150,000+ dead so far), in which the US has remained primarily a dazed and confused spectator, a largely unheard of gang of Allah-crazed and Saudi-created and -funded Sunni Islamist jihadis, who had been battling Syrian Army forces and other assorted jihadi fighters in this particularly grisly multi-sided Middle East death-match, suddenly stormed across the Syria-Iraq border into Iraq's heavily Sunni-populated Anbar province. They called themselves the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
ISIS, it was breathlessly reported, was baaaaad. How baaaaad? Even Al-Qaeda kicked them out of the Crazy-for-Allah Club for being too crazy. And now, to everyone’s and no one's surprise, ISIS was going for the gold. And for the ultimate Islamist wet dream/US nightmare, the creation of a new global "Caliphate".
In a kind of blitzkreig not seen since Hitler's Panzers rolled into Poland in 1939, about 1,000 of these blood-thirsty Islamic militants in their matching black uniforms and shiny white armored-up Hyundai SUVs and Land Cruisers, overwhelmed this huge chunk of Iraqi territory quicker than you could say "Show me the money!" In a matter of days, they had captured Mosul, the country's 2nd largest city (pop: 2 million) and Tikrit (Saddam's hometown). In their continuing onslaught they have executed any Shi'ite men, women and children who crossed their path; wrecked Shi'ite mosques and monuments; taken over Iraq's largest oil refinery; reportedly robbed the Mosul branch of the Bank of Iraq of $250 million and set their sights on Baghdad, 220 miles away. The Iraqi Army (American-trained to the tune of $25 billion!) skedaddled at the first whiff of grapeshot and their corrupt and cowardly officers ran away even faster.
After the first shock and awe at the speed of the near-collapse of one-third of that Allah-forsaken country we had looted and ruined for eight years and left to its own discombobulated devices three years ago, the Bush Administration perps, who had originally lied us into this war crime, rose up on their hind legs and began to yowl: We won that war! We never should have left Eye-raq! We need to go back immediately and bomb bomb bomb Eye-ran...uh…Eye-raq! ISIS is coming! ISIS is coming! Eeek! It's all Obama's fault! As for the current Administration, Secretary of Botox John Kerry, predictably blustered and bloviated nonsensically. Obama, for his part, reverted to his natural Rodney (Can't we all get along!) King gene and hoped for a change... of subject.
Enter, once again, from stage left (or right) Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Ever since the Obamacons and the old gang of unreconstructed Cold Warriors in Washington financed and orchestrated the February 22nd crypto-Nazi/fascist/oligarch coup d'etat against the corrupt but democratically elected Ukraine Government in Kiev, Uncle Sam has been pimping and promoting a bigger and better war crime. A new hot Cold War. Or better yet, World War X, the long wished-for looting and destruction of Russia. The once-upon-a-time Evil Empire. The big bad bear. The eternal boogeyman. Wolfish Western Banksters and Vulture Capitalists are standing by, salivating at the $zillions to be devoured from that corpse.
In delusional and dishonorable pursuit of that mad objective, Washington has engineered and been encouraging what has turned into a Ukrainian Civil War between our stooges in Kiev and the Russian-speaking population of eastern Ukraine, who reject the Kiev coup government. Officials in Kiev, eager to play their ghoulish part, refer to the eastern Ukrainians as "terrorists", "pro-Russian rebels", “insects” to be exterminated. Never as fellow-Ukrainians. A former Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko (jailed for corruption in 2011 but released in time for the coup) actually expressed the wish that the Kiev government would nuke eastern Ukraine and all its ethnic Russians. Charming! To that end, the Ukraine military and its neo-Nazi militia accomplices have been bombarding eastern Ukraine and, in one terrible case in Odessa, burning at least 40 Russian-speaking Odessans alive after they had been locked inside a torched government building. While ever since their coup succeeded, the Obamacons and their fellow travelers have been feeding an endless stream of lies and propagandist tripe about Putin, the Russians and the eastern Ukraine population, to an over-enthusiastic but breathtakingly ill-informed and uncritical western Media that laps it up and spreads it thick to an ignorant but too easily manipulated public as if it were 2002 again. The mushroom cloud/smoking gun revisited?
Last week a Malaysian Airlines commercial jet was shot out of the sky over eastern Ukraine by a surface-to-air-missile, killing all aboard. The yelping, alibing and lying began immediately (if not sooner) on all sides. Nobody really knows who did it. Except, of course, the villains who did it and they're not saying. But every one of the players in this months-long murderous farce knows for sure that the other guys are guilty. American surveillance systems and spy satellites over eastern Ukraine might know the truth. But US Intelligence has had little credibility since being hoisted by its own petard over the known unknowns and unknown knowns of 9/11 and Lie-raq. (Can you say: “Curveball”) Seizing with unseemly speed on the tragic event, the Obamacons declared with straight faced theatrical outrage that they are dead certain Putin did it, even if he didn’t. And the Media has been breathlessly delivering that hoo-haa at fever pitch.
The Greek dramatist Aeschylus is believed to have wisely remarked 2,500 years ago that the first casualty of war is truth. That appears to be an accurate observation on most if not all the wars provoked by the American Empire in recent memory. Can you say: Gulf of Tonkin. Kuwaiti baby incubators. WMDs. It's not about the oil. You can now add to that daisy chain of dishonesty: What coup d’etat? The Kiev government is legitimate. Putin invaded Crimea. Putin shot down the Malaysian airline. Putin’s the real killer….no…wait…that was OJ.
Just as the Bush-Cheney political opportunists quickly climbed over the victims of 9/11 to provoke their long and too-much desired smackdown of Iraq with all its accompanying highly profitable destruction and chaos, the Obamacons and their Kiev puppets are crying crocodile tears and excitedly waving the bloody shirt over this tragic airline incident hoping to paint Putin as the patsy, the fall guy, for the new hot Cold War they hope to ignite.
It is actually not surprising to see President Pusillanimous (the Nobel Peace Prize winner!) rush to the front of this anti-Russia parade. For the past six years, continually lambasted and obstructed by the GOP loons and Teabaglicans, he has been largely feckless and ineffective on the home front except when it comes to handing out get-out-of-jail-free cards to felonious banksters and delivering Obamacare to the health insurance companies despite their pre-existing condition of greed. On the National Security dark side, however, he has been enthusiastically all in on droning to death real and imagined terrorists from Afghanistan to Yemen (including several American citizens!), supporting not-even-the-sky’s-the-limit global surveillance, cheerleading a war on whistleblowers and keeping the Military/Industrial Complex cash registers ka-chinging.
Of course, National Security and foreign affairs have often been the fallback default position of American Presidents sinking in the polls or considered weak. As the Wall Street/Washington DC Axis of Evil knows full well, “Shock and Awe” worked better on the Homeland than it ever did on Baghdad or Hanoi. And having wars is even better bu$ine$$ than winning them…