Have you ever
noticed how certain words simply refuse to go together? Aside from
the obvious oxymora like uniting jumbo with shrimp, or baby with
grand, (or president with Bush), there just happen to be combinations
of words that resist placement in the same sentence. Some do not
even want to coexist on the same page. Pax
Americana is supposed to mean peace enforced by the power of
America. Another way of defining Pax Americana is to say the peace
is due to America's actions. If peace were due to Britain's actions,
it would be Pax Britannica. If peace were due to Italy's efforts:
Pax Romana, etc.
The term pops
up in the most bizarre places. I recently read a summary
of the Project for the New American Century's (PNAC) blueprint for
Rebuilding America's Defenses (RAD). In addition to giving me a
screaming headache, it provided many examples of words and thoughts
that do not belong together. I contemplated reading the entire 90-page
report but my body has a restricted capacity for punishment. In
essence, the PNAC contends that Pax Americana evolved as a byproduct
of the ending of the Cold War which left America as the paramount
As you plow
through the document, you get a sense that the plan is all about
shoving peace and democracy down the world's throat at the threat
of military intervention. It follows closely the schizophrenic action
a parent might yield to when he/she gives a child a spanking for
fighting. The mantra becomes "Peace our way or we will punish
Many of the
recommendations given by the PNAC are obviously those of a radically
and philosophically single-minded committee. The PNAC members who
wrote or influenced the RAD document included Vice-President Dick
Cheney, his top national security assistant, I. Lewis Libby; Secretary
of Defense Donald Rumsfeld; Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz;
National Security Council member Eliot Abrams; Undersecretary for
Arms Control and International Security, John Bolton; former Chairman
of the Defense Policy Board, Richard Perle; President of the Committee
for the Liberation of Iraq, Randy Scheunemann; Republican Party
leader, Bruce Jackson; PNAC chairman William Kristol; and Florida
governor Jeb Bush. The list of participants reads like a Who's
Who of extreme right-wing tunnel-visioned neoconservatives.
arrangement of proposing Pax Americana by flexing the RAD muscles
of a superpower is especially telling of our real agenda. The actions
of the cabal
responsible for placing George Bush into office afford the most
contradictory deed of all. The contradiction is this: We have all
heard President Bush repeatedly telling the world that America is
in Iraq on a mission of nation rebuilding that includes a regime
change and a new government in, i.e., Saddam out and democracy in,
like it or not. Now just ponder that tune for a second before reading
In a presidential
debate with Al Gore on October 11, 2000, in Winston-Salem, NC,
Bush said: "I don't think our troops ought to be used for
what's called nation-building…I think what we need to do is convince
people who live in the lands they live in to build the nations.
Maybe I'm missing something here. I mean, we're going to have a
kind of nation-building corps from America? Absolutely not."
Now maybe I
am missing something here, but it appears that our "absolutely
not" President Bush is on a nation-building track in Iraq
and he is doing it by sending in his 132,000-member nation-building
corps, also known as the US Army, Marines, Air Force, and Navy.
Remember that America attacked Iraq to save us from the impending
assault that Saddam Hussein was readying against our country. And
that stretch came from the argumentum
ad populum that Osama Bin laden was using Iraq as a training
ground for terrorism. Didn't you know that Iraq was directly involved
in the 9/11 terrorist attacks? Apparently almost everyone else knew
it! Allowing for a summary of how America got from point A through
point L (for lies), to point F (for failure); we see that America
had to respond militarily to the 9/11 attacks and upon failing to
find OBL, and thanks to our failed
intelligence, it unsurprisingly followed that we had to invade
Iraq. Meanwhile the blueprint for RAD which was conveniently prepared
by the PNAC was pulled off the shelf and put into motion. Understanding
the goals of RAD helps to explain why America is still in Iraq even
after the Hussein regime was removed, the Iraq military quashed
and every last weapon of mass destruction neutralized. And thanks
to the guidance of RAD, Bin Laden's capture or his demise is no
longer priority #1.
It may be argued
that the events of 9/11 were the precipitating cause of our armed
aggression into The Middle East but a portion of the predisposing
cause may well go to the shelved RAD blueprint. Keep in mind that
the RAD was published in September 2000, one full year before
the 9/11 attacks. The gee whiz, we need to do something call
for help was answered in the form of the bromide furnished by RAD
offering to save the day. (Not unlike the old Mighty Mouse
cartoon: "Here I come to save the day!") The RAD blueprint
is a plan not for world peace as Pax Americana implies. Rather it
is a psychotic plan for world dominance. Consider the following
categories, a direct paste from the summary:
areas are arranged under 4 categories: A. Pax Americana – outlining
the rationale for global empire, B. Securing Global Hegemony – pinpointing
regions that are considered trouble spots for U.S. policy, C. Rebuilding
the Military – plans for expansion of U.S. military might, and D.
Future Wars of Pax Americana – the “RAD” vision of complete control
of land, sea, air, space and cyberspace."
"global empire, global hegemony, expansion of U.S. military
might, future wars, complete control of land, sea, air, space and
cyberspace" give the impression of placing the footprint
of Pax Americana onto the slipperiest of slippery slopes. A nation
can no more shove peace or democracy down the throat of any other
country than a person can force another to love them.
From the section
titled "Iraq and the Persian Gulf," a few quotes demand
highlighting: "Over the long term, Iran may well prove as
large a threat to U.S. interests in the Gulf as Iraq has."
May we surmise that "U.S. interests" is code for
Exxon-Mobil, Chevron, Shell Oil, et al? Later, "In Europe,
the Persian Gulf and East Asia, enduring U.S. security interests
argue forcefully for an enduring American military presence…"
Might one of those "enduring security interests"
be the nation of Halliburton? Then, regarding the Air Force presence
in the Gulf region, "…the United States should consider
it a de facto permanent presence." Hence, the raison
d'etre for the presence of America's Air Force translates to:
we are rightfully there because we are there.
From the "Axis
of Evil" section, "…adversaries like Iran, Iraq and
North Korea are rushing to develop ballistic missiles and nuclear
weapons as a deterrent to American intervention in regions they
seek to dominate." This makes me wonder if the RAD itself
was used as a resource for our horribly failed intelligence that
was used in the run-up to the Iraq invasion. Furthermore, might
the current hysterical reports of Iran's threat to world peace be
based on the same inbred sources?
From the "East
Asia" section, "…a majority of the U.S. fleet, including
two-thirds of all carrier battle groups, should be concentrated
in the Pacific. A new, permanent forward base should be established
in Southeast Asia." Yes, America won the popularity contest
in Southeast Asia back in the 1960's and 70's and you can be sure
the welcome mat is out for us again. Later, "Indeed, in
time, American and allied power in the region may provide a spur
to the process of democratization inside China itself…"
If we have difficulty swallowing that outlandish pill at first,
we might try washing it down with some Sino Kool-Aid.
From the "Europe"
section, "…it is important that NATO not be replaced by
the European Union, leaving the United States without a voice in
European security affairs." Or, the American paw marks
just have to be in everybody's business and back yard. Maybe this
offers a good example of how a conservative of the past (a paleoconservative)
differs from a neoconservative of today. Wouldn't it be more
honest to just switch neo with un, giving the more
accurate designation, unconservative?
In the "Regime
Change" section, regarding the need for an American preeminence
for "….removing a dangerous and hostile regime when necessary."
followed by the likely wars that will occur and "…a decisive
victory that results in long-term political or regime change."
This is where the recipe calls for moving into the targeted
country, building up the military presence there, and staying long
enough to force a regime change and turning the country into a democracy
no matter what the cost. And if there is resistance, American forces
will stay to "deter, defeat, or remove from power the regional
aggressors." This sounds a bit like the evening's news
on events in Iraq or Afghanistan every day of the week, therefore
further illustrating the de facto implementation of RAD.
In the "Army"
section a spot of enlightenment appears: "Regimes are difficult
to change based upon punishment alone." However, punishment
is about all an army is good for! In the same section, "…an
American military force that lacks the ability to employ ground
forces that can survive and maneuver rapidly on future battlefields
will deprive U.S. political leaders of a decisive tool of diplomacy."
That sounds like Tony Soprano-style diplomacy where negotiations
are delivered at the end of a decisive tool; a gun.
In the "Navy"
section, regarding increased presence, "…the Navy needs
to better understand the requirement to have substantial numbers
of cruise-missile platforms at sea and in close proximity to regional
hot spots…" And thanks to the precision missiles which
did successfully hit their targets in Iraq, they managed to destroy
precisely the life-sustaining economic infrastructure which American
companies like Halliburton, Kellogg/Brown/Root are dutifully reconstructing
with American taxpayers footing the bill. Call it the cycle of war
In the "Overseas
Bases" section, regarding our geopolitical posture, U.S. forces
should "…provide significant military power to shape events."
And "In sum we see an enduring need for large-scale American
forces." This recurring theme screams "hegemony our
way, or the highway because we dominate you!"
In the "Nuclear
Expansion" section, regarding the Clinton Administration's
faux pas of signing the purported nuclear deterrent, the Comprehensive
Test Ban Treaty, "If the United States is to have a nuclear
deterrent that is both effective and safe, it will need to test."
This is akin to saying that although we promise not to shoot you,
we will have the very best, most accurate, and of course, the most
deadly guns on Earth. If the planet buys that line I wonder if "Your
check is in the mail" still works.
In the "Future
Wars of Pax Americana" section, on the vision of the blueprint,
"RAD envisions a future in which the United States is in
complete control of land, sea, air, and space and cyberspace of
planet Earth." And where will Captain Kirk park The
In the "Control
of Space" section, the planners seem to be putting life back
into the "Star Wars" space-based defense system. A considerable
measure of criticism is passed on the United States' error of signing
the 1972 Anti Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty with The Soviet Union:
"…the Air Force must accelerate its efforts to create new
systems — and, to repeat, the space-based systems — that are necessary
to shift the scope of air operations from the theater level to the
global level." Later, on the theme of controlling the heavens,
"Space control is not an avoidable issue. It is not an optional
extra. For U.S. armed forces to continue to assert military preeminence,
control of space — defined by Space Command as u2018the ability to assure
access to space, freedom of operations within the space medium,
and an ability to deny others the use of space' — must be an essential
element of our military strategy." I can not avoid the
apropos cliché expression: far out!
In the "Control
of Cyberspace" section, the suggestion is made that the US
could use cyber attacks as a military tool: "…the prospects
for space war or u2018cyberspace war' represent the truly revolutionary
potential inherent in the notion of military transformation."
We may as well make the digital devastation a part of
the total package.
In the "Strategy
for Transforming Conventional Forces" section, some incredible
highlights include discussion of "the world of microbes,"
"fleets of robots, some small enough to fit in soldiers' pockets,"
"space itself becoming a theater of war," and "advanced
forms of biological warfare that can target specific genotypes that
may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically
useful tool." Try to imagine the potential consequences
of isolating specific genotypes
or even DNA that may be designated as the enemy. Specific populations,
limited to exacting DNA characteristics could be targeted. The possibilities
grow exponentially once you factor in the distinguishing characteristics
of race, nationality, or region. Wiping out a single race through
genotype isolation could be a possibility. Considering the horrifying
prospect of attacking a genotype, recall that Saddam
Hussein's source for the poison gas he used on the Kurds was the
United States by way of a transaction engineered by our dear
Donald Rumsfeld. Can we trust America not to stoop again to supplying
WMD's to a rogue leader? When biological warfare becomes a "politically
useful tool," we are in deep doo-doo.
In the "Army
of the Future" section, we find "Future soldiers may
operate in encapsulated, climate-controlled, powered fighting units,
laced with sensors, and boasting chameleon-like u2018active' camouflage.
u2018Skin-patch' pharmaceuticals help regulate fears, focus concentration
and enhance endurance and strength. Under the u2018Land Warrior' program,
some Army experts envision a u2018squad' of seven soldiers able to dominate
an area the size of the Gettysburg battlefield — where, in 1863,
some 165,000 men fought." Any chance Arnold Schwarzenegger's
Robo Cop or Terminator characters were on this committee?
This is a bloodcurdling
operational plan for any group to dream up, let alone publish. Perhaps
other nations have similar sick plans and we are required to have
one that will counterbalance our enemies. I believe that the perversion
of this plan is rooted in the fact that it was hatched in a most
un-American manner. Much of America's strength comes from the principle
that our policies and laws are formed by representatives of the
complete spectrum of ideologies. As cumbersome and slow as that
process is, it does afford the opinions of many positions to be
heard and helps minimize the yes-man mentality. The RAD plan was
the brainchild of a very tiny segment of the varied opinions held
by the broader continuum of American beliefs. But what ought to
have the peace-loving American losing sleep is the fact that the
RAD (short for radical?) plan is being instituted by America's myopic
president as though he were following the Holy Grail of international
Woolley [send him mail]
is a disabled Vietnam veteran living in Miami, Florida. He served
with the 9th Infantry Division in The Mekong Delta in
a Ranger unit doing reconnaissance 1968–69 where he received
a gunshot wound to the head leaving one side severely paralyzed.
He is a father of four grown children and grandfather of seven,
including a set of triplets.