Processing Distortion with Peter B. Collins: America’s Empire of Chaos

Peter B. Collins Presents Pepe Escobar

Taking a well-deserved break from his travels at his home in Sao Paolo, Pepe Escobar returns to cover many hotspots. We open with his assessment of the upset in Brazil’s presidential election, where rival candidates are forming an alliance, and jump from there to the forced marriage in Kabul of Ghani and Abdullah, where Escobar has deep knowledge. Then we get his views of the new perpetual war on Islamic State, informed by his recent visits to Abu Dhabi and Tehran, plus an update on the Iranian nuclear talks. We zoom out to get his worldview as described in his brilliant recent essay and the developing Russian-Chinese alliance he calls “the new silk roads.”

*Pepe Escobar is the Brazilian journalist who writes for Asia Times and TomDispatch. His new book, Empire of Chaos, will be published in November by Nimble Books.

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  1. Nice one… I always enjoy Pepe’s take on things.

    I can’t help but get a sense that there are two slightly divergent US foreign policy angles going on. The prominent is the Wesley Clark style 5 point plan: the Neocon/Israeli policy of destabilization, gulf oil, and regime change, with all roads leading to Iran. Ukraine is obviously a part of this, but that still feels more like a dangerous game of chicken, where the US is shooting from the hip while everybody else is ducking, opposed to some sort of active game plan. Basically: whatever ill advised, reckless policy people like John McCain are shamelessly trumpeting.

    As far as what the other angle is, I’m not sure. I guess two examples which don’t line up entirely as neatly are: 1.) the moderately less bombastic approach to Iran: for example, allowing negotiations over the nuclear program to continue (much to the indignation of Bibi Netanyahu), and: 2.) with the marital tension with the Saudis and Turkey. Ironically, Joe Biden’s comments on the matter were probably the most intelligent thing I’ve ever heard him say, but that’s obviously not what I’m talking about though.

    Maybe there’s some sort of undercurrent of caution coming from somewhere which doesn’t object to the policy per se, but at least recognizes that the level of recklessness is starting to feel like duck hunting with Dick Cheney. I felt similar with the idea that there was a possibility that Snowdengate represented a potential rift, or turf skirmish, between the NSA and the CIA. Yes, they’re part of the same system, but as I’ve said before, it’s possible that the scope of the NSA’s activities has become so pervasive that it actually poses a security threat, not to Americans, but to other shady dealings of a marginally more covert variety.

    I’m not decided one way or another on this, or the turf war hypothesis for that matter, but I figured I’d throw the idea out there.

    Again though, nice podcast and good reassurance of the guest quality control on the heels of the Ray McGovernment gatekeeper episode. (Not to be a snob, but still…)

  2. We have to face the uncomfortable fact that this is the “Endgame”. The end game for the Neocon is chaos, fragmentation, plunder of commodities, the endless slaughter of millions, tens of millions made refugees–basically endless wars with absolutely no concern towards humanity. Endless War is what the lust for. They are physical cowards who care not about who is slaughtered. From “the committee for the present danger” to PNAC, then9/11,then military action–no matter how chaotic and senseless . They are at the edge of insanity and addicted to what has unfolded and will continue its way to what? NO END GAME! This is it and more will follow. Individual presidents are puppets. They scored big with the wooden-brained “W”.

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