Galima Galiullina Ph.D. for VT
Vladimir Lenin, ideologist and strategist of the Bolshevik revolution of 1917, presented in his “May Day of Revolutionary Proletariat” an accurate definition of the revolutionary situation: revolution occurs when the upper classes cannot continue to rule as before, and the lower classes do not want to continue to live as they are. Americans of many classes really did not want to live as before so they voted for Trump’s “dark horse”. Can the leaders, who came to power in 2017, relieve the tension in society? In the first months of his Presidency Donald Trump has continued disrupting politics as usual, or has he? Apparently, there once were hopes yet, now Trump supporters are wondering- health care reform?, continued foreign wars?, incompetent flunkies appointed to cabinet positions? (Haley at UN, Perry at Energy, Carson at HUD, and Price at HHS). And, then thankfully, the failure of “Ryancare”. There were hopes but now for the dwindling few still holding out hope is teetering between resignation and despair.
Could anyone have imagined that after the brilliant victory of the Cold War and the mystically unexpected disintegration the main enemy the USSR, the United States is moving victoriously to the brink of the abyss? What happened in the last quarter of a century with the most powerful country in the world? Will America repeat the sad fate of the Roman Empire or the USSR?
Let’s consider one facet of the situation in the context of what in retrospect may be the American Rubicon – the intellectual crisis. Perhaps its most crucial aspect is the United State’s intellectual degradation in the political and geopolitical knowledge landscape. Arguably, this happened first because an exceptional nation does not spend money on needless study to understand other, mostly backward, people. Always enough money to bribe local princes abroad; about the rest, the corporations, corrupt journalists, and officials will mollify. Secondly, bureaucrats with amputated honor do not need anyone to understand the real results of their strategic decisions. Instead, they prefer funding loyal scientists who are always finding the best way to sing Hosanna to a great country.
The causes of the intellectual crisis are a complex of unsound political and geopolitical knowledge:
In the search for scientific knowledge, a scientist must serve only the Truth. In modern Western society, most scientist’s have little chance of survival if they do not serve the organization. Organizations order research and wait in the end not for Truth, but only confirmation of the decisions that have already been taken without scientific justification.
Numerous Think Tanks do not work in search of truth, but as advocates, and advocate specifically for strategic decisions prescribed by their sponsor and stakeholders. “Research findings” anticipated by the generals, boards of directors of the largest corporations and shadow and real governments provide comforting conformation. Worse still, are critical areas of inquiry left unexplored, or pursued in secret, at the great disadvantage of the whole society.
Ever since Francis Fukuyama declared the end of history, the need to study history to forecast the future began to look like a dull excess. The US Empire declared itself the only possessor of truths at all times, and the sole leaseholder of all future events. Meanwhile, the lessons of the History of Ancient Rome sound alarming calls to avoid the tragic consequences of neglecting norms of traditional morality and the loss of unifying and inspiring national ideals.
Declaring themselves winners in the Cold War, the United States lost its intellectual balance, by foregoing all intellectual opponents, but this did not exclude the possibility truth is found in other ways.
Kremlinologists, who studied the thinking and behavior of Russisan leaders for many years, acquired the mantle of gurus. These sage observers carried unshakable truths based on a view of the modern world and the Kremlin, which simply ceased to exist. Their conviction of the inevitable demise of Russia, following the death of the USSR, became an indisputable truth. The world without Russia appeared so safe and defenseless that the ideologists of further wars had to create new man-made threats – Al Qaeda and ISIL, or however they are described by a complicit western media – to justify military and security assets far exceeding actual threats.
The desire to keep the world unipolar was so overwhelming that even scientists did not escape the temptation to stop following the logic of the dialectical development of knowledge. Instead they offered a metaphysical version of the explanation of the modern world in the context of the ideas of Fukuyama’s “end of History” – an idea Fukuyama himself has since abandoned.
Since in the conditions of strict ideological control, the demand on the market for scientists working in the field of geopolitics, national security and foreign policy began to depend directly on loyalty to the gospel of the leading party- either Democrat or Republican. The service of Truth and independence of thinking turned into dangerous dissidence.
Who are the enemies of the people?
Just look at David Horowitz’s book “101 Most Dangerous Academic Scientists in America”! Once famous conservative critic urged others to read the tome commenting: “This is a real fascinating and useful guide to the worst of the worst in the sacred audiences of the Academy.
According to Horowitz, Professor Matthew Evangelist of Cornell University is dangerous because he is the Director of the Program for the Study of Peaceful Coexistence, took part in anti-war education, spoke out against the war and signed a letter urging the faculty at Cornell University to oppose the war in Iraq.
Professor Rick Eckstein of Villanova University is a Leninist in conviction and teaches his students that terrorism is a product of capitalist imperialism. His lectures are primitive political pamphlets, where the list of literature includes: V.I. Lenin. “Imperialism as the highest stage of capitalism”; Gore Vidal “Dreaming of the war: Blood for oil and the junta of Cheney-Bush”, and Noam Chomsky”s “Media control”. Professor Eckstein views Villanova as a political institution that can strengthen opposition to US imperialism, concludes Horowitz.
Professor Norman Finkelstein (De Paul University) claims that the Holocaust was invented and used by Jews to justify Israeli violations of human rights in Palestine and crimes against humanity. He is convinced that “the United States is the main terrorist government in the world today”. Horowitz emphasizes that the professors he included in his “black list” work in the field of humanities and social sciences, therefore, form the world view of the younger generation. It is difficult to dismiss them, because they have reached the tenure level – a lifetime position. They are very recognized in their universities, manage faculties and departments, and from that they are even more dangerous, because whole branches of knowledge turn out to be under their harmful influence, warns Horowitz.
Since Horowitz’s book was published much has changed, and witch hunts will undoubtedly continue to muffle voices of many intellectuals. This is the exact danger that numerous diseases engendered by a distorted vision of the world occasion, and paranoid behavior and routine amputation of politicians’ honor easily leads to lethal outcomes.
The voices of intellectuals who for a long time diagnosed the causes of dementia in American democracy are practically not audible to the mass audience. They make no sound at numerous seminars and conferences in university audiences. In the midst of the Ukrainian tragedy, former US ambassador to the USSR Jack Mattlock rushed to Washington, then gripped by a snowstorm, to bring to politicians a voice of reason. Mattlock explained that Russia and Ukraine are a single people, bound by blood, with deep historical and cultural roots which must be recognized. In his presentation at the Washington Press Club, major mainstream media were not seen, they did not choose to broadcast a voice of truth.
What are the threats for America?
So, we are witnessing the deepest intellectual crisis of the country, whose “soft power” attracted so many minds for many years and generated so many hopes.
The foreign policy crisis found precise definitions in the analysis of Noam Chomsky, one of the last Mohicans in the university cohort of honest intellectuals. The behavior of the Western powers, Chomsky wrote, “exposed the very back of Western civilization, with its unlimited desire for power, pathological adoration for high-tech military tools, insensitivity to “alien” cultures and aggressive chauvinism … “.
Chomsky’s lesson number one is already mastered: The New World Order Concept has turned international law into an unprincipled fraud.
The second lesson, also familiar, is that such behavior will go unpunished in an intellectual culture that does not recognize moral principles to steer governments increasingly unattached from their citizens.
Consider the evidence of government participation in staged events such as the Sandy Hook episode, where investigative journalists were unable to verify, and government officials refused to release records that anyone was shot, or died. We find the evaluation of the stupor of domestic policy in Twitter in the record of one of the analysts of the Eurasia group about the mass bloodshed in Newtown: “Yes, we need to adopt a number of reasonable arms control laws, but this will not solve the problem, because the country is at present in deep cultural decay, which says that American society is very weak “.
After Trump’s surprising victory, the analytical centers that relied on forecasts of Clinton’s victory, failed to rush to find the answer, to explain what really happened. Instead the losers seek to obscure their mistakes and initiate an all points alert to find a useful suspect. The corpse of American democracy was subjected to autopsy, the cause of the deadly disease was found in the environment and proved to be more dangerous than the plague. Any contacts of representatives of the ruling establishment with the Russians are henceforth deadly dangerous. So, for example, the public is informed about a meeting between General Flynn and a Russian student in 2014. The student studied the topic of Russian intelligence! Perhaps the main figure in her theme was Anna Chapman. But there are a lot of Russians in the United States now, several million, and among them there are many beautiful, young and intelligent students. Hence, from now on any politician who accidentally swaps a couple of phrases with a charming conversationalist with a Russian accent risks a career. Note that even in the holy of holies of America – on the golf courses – you can meet the Russians!
A patient who avoids a real diagnosis, who seeks help from witches or who ignores illness, is considered foolish at best and suicidal at worst. The switching of public attention channels from America’s real problems to the always exciting topic of Russians as the main threat is also dangerous for the health of the nation.
Perhaps the root of the intellectual crisis in the Western vision of the world and the failure of attempts to lead the global world lies in the fact that the world lives and develops not only with finance and corruption but with peoples wish to pass wealth, knowledge, and tradition to their descendants. This was always a key component and basis of sovereign nations – a sense of national dignity, history and culture, language, and legends. It is both elusive and priceless, which makes Russians – Russian, Frenchmen – French, Germans – German, and Arabs – Arab. We see this clearly in the example of the disintegration of the European Union. I observed the Greeks at the very beginning of their entry into the European Union and thought: No, the Greeks will not be able to be there for long, they are sunny people with warm blood, German discipline will simply kill them. But now a lot of Greeks rebelled … So it happened.
What has to be done?
Under this title VI Lenin described in detail the plan for revolutionary action a hundred years ago. In his view Russia then needed three fundamental changes. What Lenin espoused then might have more relevance to America in 2017 than one may think. Certainly not the communist nightmare Bolshevism inflicted on Russia, but his assessment of the problem bears striking similarities to our situation.
America needs an intellectual revolution. All impending catastrophes can be prevented if American intellectuals admit their own complicity in what has happened over the past quarter century, and engage in an impartial analysis of the intellectual atmosphere of American society. Recall that the first Russian revolution in February 1917, was a revolt against the monarchy due principally to the failure of the aristocrats to understand the first World War and the deep social crisis it brought throughout the country. Only after the Czar was deposed and the bourgeois government failed to end Russian participation in World War I were the Bolshevics able to seize power and initiate 70 years socialism. Why did the Bolshevics succeed? Simply they were able to recognize the will of common people and mobilize society to accept radical changes.
How does this apply to the situation now facing the United States?
First, the hard lesson Russians learned in 1917 is that a government detached from its population is eventually doomed to fail. It can be argued that American government and its controlled mass media are increasingly distinct from the problems of everyday citizens. This occurred as the United States became preoccupied with globalization and the role of global policeman in a unipolar setting. Independent, non-corrupt American thinkers need to reframe national goals and jerk us from the current intellectual stupor.
Thought must be given to ideological and humanitarian values, and the scale and consequences of war crimes of certain American corporations and the military. The loss of collective memory deprives Americans the clear sense of national purpose and future opportunities to regain self-respect and the respect of the community of nations.
It is important to understand that politicians will not be able to return America to genuine greatness. Only a thoughtful strategy of development and unification of the country, created by patriotic intellectuals, and communicated in simple terms through non-traditional and non-corporate controlled media will set America on the right path.
Yet, the intellectual crisis as an apogee of the spiritual crisis of society as a whole cannot be overcome only by the efforts of intellectuals. Turning again to the experience of Russia, we note that Vladimir Lenin, being not only a revolutionist but also an intellectual, managed to clothe the ideas of the revolution in the most concise and attractive slogans: “End the disaster of war”; “Land – to the peasants, factories and plants – to the workers!”, “Complete electrification of the country and education for everybody”. These slogans promised so much to so many, as a result, Lenin and his party won.
We need to admit that the US strategy followed for the past 25 years has been catastrophically wrong for both the world and the US itself. Following the ideas of neo-conservatives, we sent experts to foment color revolutions, to rebuild life in other countries according to our recipes. These chaos inducing disasters were designed to sate appetites of our corporations, and we deployed military bases around the world to protect the interests of our business. But as the world refuses to obey us we have to start bloody wars. We will have to stop believing in the need for an empire of the United States.
We have a lot of smart people, hotly discussing the problems of sexual minorities, abortions, global warming. But at the moment all these are not the most vital problems for the nation. We need to figure out how to replace the discredited Milton Friedman’s theory that we planted everywhere, eventually plunging the planet into chaos: ravaged countries, millions of desperate, destitute people at the mercy of secret manipulators, or simply in search of salvation, they rush around the planet, a minority of insanely wealthy, preoccupied only by the preservation of wealth and the purchase of another politician to expand power. 4 million Iraqi residents left war torn Iraq, where are all these people? What are their feelings about us?
It is time to comprehend the situation in the United States in the context of three key strategic objectives:
- How can we reestablish true democracy in America?
- How can we restore the American economy?
- What is the role of America in the global world going forward?
If this can be accomplished this may be the last chance for glory and a chance for America to become once again one of the most attractive and inspiring countries.
Galima Galiullina Ph.D.