Eric Zuesse, originally posted at Strategic Culture
Joe Biden came into the U.S. White House promising to change Donald Trump’s foreign policies, but didn’t even try to change them, and instead he has continued them, and has failed with them exactly as Trump did when he was the President. Here are some examples:
1. The nuclear agreement with Iran (the Obama-negotiated “JCPOA” for Iran to stop research that might be useful for developing nuclear warheads): At first, Biden demanded that Iran stop continuing to develop missiles (which was a demand that Trump had made), before Biden would even negotiate with Iran on anything, including the JCPOA. Iran stood firm on refusing to make any preliminary concessions, and insisting that America simply rejoin the JCPOA that America had signed-to under Obama and then abandoned under Trump. Biden started to negotiate with Iran in Vienna though Iran had refused to change its position on developing missiles. Biden was negotiating though he had said he wouldn’t unless Iran first complied with his (which had been Trump’s) demands. Biden lost.
2. Biden in the Vienna negotiations continued demanding that Iran halt its missile-program. Iran continued refusing to do any such thing. Biden dragged-out the negotiations, perhaps hoping that Iran would finally cave. Iran continued to stand firm. On August 4th, the Moon of Alabama blogger headlined “‘Maximum Pressure’ Against Iran Has Failed. What Will Biden Do Next?”, and reported that the longer those fake ‘negotiations’ continued, the more embarrassing the results would turn out to be for Biden. This is total failure of Biden’s (Trump’s) Iran-policy.
3. Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline: Biden started his Presidency by demanding that Germany not allow the German-Russian Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to be completed and begin supplying Russian gas directly to Europe. He threatened Germany with sanctions if Germany didn’t abandon the pipeline, and tried to get Germany to commit to buying the far costlier U.S.-produced canned-and-shipped gas instead of Russia’s directly-pipelined gas. Biden was continuing Trump’s policy on that gas-pipeline, too. Just as had happened under Trump, Germany refused to comply (just like Iran did on the JCPOA). Biden finally caved and didn’t impose any sanctions against Germany. On July 21st, the Washington Post headlined “U.S., Germany reach agreement on Russian gas pipeline, ending dispute between allies”, and delivered the U.S. Government’s spin on this capitulation (which was NATO’s spin on it): “In exchange for an end to U.S. efforts to block the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Germany will invest in Ukraine’s green technology infrastructure, and Berlin and Washington will work together on initiatives to mitigate Russia’s energy dominance in Europe.” However, Germany’s alleged concession, or ‘commitment’, was purely nominal, and would be virtually inconsequential even if it were to become embodied in enforceable legal terminology. Again, it was simply lipstick on a pig.
On August 3rd, NATO’s main PR arm, the Atlantic Council, then issued, via Politico, a fluff-piece trying to present America’s humiliating defeat on the Nord Stream 2 matter as having been, instead, a victory for both America and Germany. The Atlantic Council’s John R. Deni headlined there “Why Central and Eastern Europe should be cheering on Nord Stream 2”, and he argued, basically, that the July 21st agreement — whatever it might turn out to be or to mean — was a win for Washington, because “The alternative, Washington’s unilateral sanctions on German businesses, only strengthened the voices of those in Berlin who favor a more ambivalent German policy toward great power competition — one that pursues an equal distance between the U.S. and Russia.” In other words, implicitly, Deni was saying that Biden’s objective of preventing the completion and operational start of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline was stupid, and that NATO was just lucky that Biden had failed on it. This was therefore, implicitly, a statement by NATO praising Germany and criticizing the United States.
4. Israel & Palestine: On 11 May 2020, the Biden campaign had issued its vague ‘policy’-commitments regarding Israel and the Palestinians, such as these:
A Biden Administration Will:
• •Sustain our unbreakable commitment to Israel’s security – including the unprecedented military and intelligence cooperation pioneered during the Obama-Biden administration, and the guarantee that Israel will always maintain its qualitative military edge.
• •Work with the Israeli and Palestinian leadership to support peacebuilding efforts in the region. Biden will urge Israel’s government and the Palestinian Authority to take steps to keep the prospect of a negotiated two-state outcome alive and avoid actions, such as unilateral annexation of territory and settlement activity, or support for incitement and violence, that undercut prospects for peace between the parties.
• •Reverse the Trump Administration’s destructive cutoff of diplomatic ties with the Palestinian Authority and cancellation of assistance programs that support Israeli-Palestinian security cooperation, economic development, and humanitarian aid for the Palestinian people in the West Bank and Gaza, consistent with the requirements of the Taylor Force Act, including that the Palestinian Authority end its system of compensation for individuals imprisoned for acts of terrorism.
• •Urge Arab states to move beyond quiet talks and take bolder steps toward normalization with Israel.
• •Firmly reject the BDS movement — which singles out Israel and too often veers into anti-Semitism — and fight other efforts to delegitimize Israel on the global stage.
• •Hold Iran’s government accountable and rejoin a diplomatic agreement to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran, if Iran returns to compliance with the JCPOA, using renewed commitment to diplomacy to work with our allies to strengthen and extend the Iran deal, and push back against Iran’s other destabilizing actions.
• •Ensure that support for the U.S.-Israel alliance remains bipartisan, reversing Trump’s exploitation of U.S. support for Israel as a political football, which harms both countries’ interests.
• •Support the critical economic and technological partnership between the United States and Israel, further expand scientific collaborations and increase commercial opportunities, and support cooperation on innovation throughout the region.
For example: regarding “Reverse the Trump Administration’s destructive cutoff of diplomatic ties with the Palestinian Authority and cancellation of assistance programs that support Israeli-Palestinian security cooperation, economic development, and humanitarian aid for the Palestinian people in the West Bank and Gaza”:
the only thing that Biden has done thus far on this is:
25 May 2021
“Blinken did not give a precise date for reopening the consulate but said it would be ‘an important way for our country to engage with and provide support to the Palestinian people’.”
America’s foreign policies are bipartisan, at least 95% neoconservative (i.e.: supporting U.S. imperialism) in both of America’s political Parties. The permanent-warfare state is America. And the continuation of the warfare-state after WW II (post-1945) in America is what made it permanent here. When World War II — the war against the Axis powers (the fascist powers) — ended in 1945, the military-industrial complex took control in America, and instead of waging war to preserve democracy (which had been FDR’s objective), the goal of America (starting on 25 July 1945) has been waging war to spread the U.S. empire everywhere. In this, both of America’s political Parties are united. It’s the American sickness, which infects all successful U.S. politicians. (It does so because America’s billionaires profit enormously from expanding the U.S. empire, and won’t support any politician who opposes imperialism.) There’s no actual market for peace, in America, because America’s (that is, its actual rulers’, its billionaires’) aim is global conquest — not national security, and not peace.
War is America’s business; and, after WW II, it’s all based on lies, and this is how it’s sold to the American public (by lies), so that, other than “small business,” the military is the most trusted institution in America (and “the military” used to be clearly the #1 most trusted American institution). Neoconservatism (U.S. imperialism) has replaced patriotism, in America, ever since the end of WW II. America is on the warpath.
We lost in Vietnam and many other places, but America’s billionaires keep on winning, and so the lies for yet more wars keep on coming, and they apparently never stop. (But, perhaps now that “small business” is as trusted by Americans as “the military” is, that might now start to change.)
This is why (for example) on 6 August 2021, an eloquent and accurate op-ed by Maitreya Bhakal at RT headlined “The richest and most war-mongering nation on Earth is still addicted to bombing poor, defenseless nations”, and he opened: “A nation-state version of a psychopath, the US refuses to give up its addiction to bombing innocent people. In just over a month, it’s bombed Syria, Iraq, Somalia and Afghanistan – and shows no signs of developing a conscience.” Nothing he said there was an exaggeration. And the U.S. regime’s top rule is: Never apologize. It didn’t apologize to Vietnam. It didn’t apologize to Iraq. It didn’t apologize to Syria. It didn’t apologize to any of its many victim-nations. It doesn’t apologize any more than Hitler’s regime did.
Psychopaths don’t apologize — unless they’re forced to. That’s because they have no conscience. And Biden, like all recent American Presidents, is a representative of that reality, and of the arrogance of America’s billionaires, the people who are being served by the permanent-warfare state: the U.S. Government.
Maybe the reason why “small business” became, in 2020, at least as respected by Americans as is “the military” (the socialized — that is, taxpayer-funded — servants to America’s billionaires) is that the covid-19 pandemic, which has done so much to increase the wealth of America’s billionaires, decimated America’s small businesses. Joe Biden still represents the billionaires. He has never changed. But maybe America, for the first time since 1945, is about to change. Maybe, finally, this psychopathic country will start to apologize for what it has been since 1945. But this is very unlikely to happen on Joe Biden’s watch. He has been part of America’s problem for as long as he has been in American politics. Both of America’s political Parties represent only America’s billionaires — not the public, anywhere.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.