Thursday, April 29, 2021

Climate Catastrophe, Capitalist Scarcity Mentality, & The Next Wave Of Genocides

There was a logic behind the Holocaust, one which gained mass support through Hitler’s narrative that exterminating entire ethnic groups and waging wars for conquest were necessary for the material benefit of the “Aryan” people. Twisted and counter-scientific as this logic was, the mentality behind it is still very much present within the Euro-American imperialist countries, extending from the way our media portrays the world to the way our ruling institutions are made to function. It’s still so prevalent within our society because it originated here, after which the Nazis merely took example from it.

This is the mindset of “Manifest Destiny,” a worldview which tells us that the “American” nation has a right to conquer and fix the world’s lands and peoples. Now typically called “American exceptionalism,” this worldview takes example from “British Israelism,” the belief that the British are above all others due to being the direct descendents of the ten lost tribes of Israel. Additional genocidal settler-colonial projects, from Nazism to Zionism, have modeled themselves off of it and have given it their own innovations. But the core logic behind it always remains the same: that one’s nation deserves to annex territory from inferior races, who must be subdued and subjugated as part of the conquering process.

The Nazis called the driving logic behind their own iteration of this worldview Lebensraum, the belief that a nation must acquire a certain amount of territory in order to develop properly. Hitler went about trying to attain Lebensraum through effectively turning Germany’s surrounding nations into Nazi colonies, and through attempting to apply the same colonization to Russia. Essential to this land grab effort, claimed the Nazi ideology, was the extermination of the Jews, whose existence supposedly posed an innate obstacle towards the realization of Hitler’s settler-colonial ambitions for the East.

It’s easy to see the similarities between this and the American empire’s genocide of the Natives, or the Zionist state’s genocide against the Palestinians. Both of these atrocities have been taking place (and are still taking place) for the sake of letting the supposedly superior nations attain the territory they believe they’re entitled to. Other variations of this genocidal logic can be found in India’s Hindutva fascists, who’ve been killing Muslims to fortify their colonization of Kashmir, and Bolsonaro’s equivalent Brazilian fascist paradigm, wherein the Amazon’s remaining uncontacted indigenous communities are being hunted down to further business interests. All of these types of noxious reactionary strains will gain more incentive to wreak death and destruction as climate collapse continues.

“The Holocaust may seem a distant horror whose lessons have already been learned,” wrote Timothy Snyder five years ago in his op-ed The Next Genocide. “But sadly, the anxieties of our own era could once again give rise to scapegoats and imagined enemies, while contemporary environmental stresses could encourage new variations on Hitler’s ideas, especially in countries anxious about feeding their growing populations or maintaining a rising standard of living.” The more that global warming’s implications reverberate, the more apparent this risk of a 21st century repeat of the Holocaust becomes.

As was the case throughout the rise of the Third Reich, this danger of genocide is becoming apparent with the increasing trend towards militarism among the oppressor nations and reactionary states. The wildly unprecedented military budget that the U.S. has taken on throughout its last two decades of “War on Terror,” which has resulted in a similarly unprecedented militarization of its police, is the prime example of why we should be alarmed about this. Already this militarization of American society has led to an uptick in police violence against the country’s colonized peoples, and in an ever-expanding series of inhumane migrant detention camps which are tied into border militarization.

The latter human rights abuse, which resembles the Holocaust due to the forced sterilizations and gassings that the victims of these de facto concentration camps have been subjected to, is going to grow in its scale and horror as the climate crisis creates ever more refugees. And American exceptionalism’s drive towards territorial expansion is exacerbating this border crisis; it was the 2009 U.S.-orchestrated coup in Honduras which made that country too dangerous and impoverished for much of its population to remain within, and it’s U.S. sanctions against the anti-imperialist countries Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba that have been economically depriving many of their residents to the point of becoming refugees. U.S./NATO imperialism’s recent wars in Africa and southwest Asia have created even worse destabilization within these regions, causing the unprecedented refugee crisis that stems from them. And the migrant victims of these acts of imperialist aggression have been met with similar cruelty both by the U.S. and by the European imperialist powers.

In the next few decades, as climate catastrophe undermines the stability of countless states around the globe, the imperialists will not just carry out genocides against the refugees from these failed states but will engineer further destabilization within these already unstable nations. They’ve already done this in Syria, where Washington has exploited a drought to ignite a horrific civil war. And a 2019 Pentagon report on how the U.S. military should respond to global warming has named Bangladesh as an upcoming target for similar intervention amid the country’s probability of buckling under the pressure from natural disasters.

What they want to pull off within these places is essentially a repeat of Hitler’s strategy for attaining Lebensraum within Poland, which the Nazis made into a stateless and lawless society so that they could operate inside of it with impunity. As a result of this power that can be gained from ripping the existing institutions out of a society, the Nazis were able to carry out many of the Holocaust’s murders within Poland. Washington has been doing something comparable in Ukraine, which since its 2014 U.S.-orchestrated Nazi coup has become a failed state where fascist militias are free to carry out ethnic cleansing. Should the imperialists succeed at doing the equivalent within places like Bangladesh, there’s no telling what kinds of atrocities will be unleashed upon the world’s poorest and most climatically vulnerable nations.

The rationale behind these near-future wars, as well as for the anti-migrant human rights abuses and militarized police state violence which will tie into these conflicts, will be of the same nature as the war propaganda campaigns of the Nazis: that the nation more land and resources to survive, justifying all of the measures that these colonial expansion efforts will entail.

In a century where land will get more scarce due to sea level rise and loss of habitable ground, and where agricultural breakdowns and water shortages increasingly plague civilization, the campaigns to manufacture consent for these wars will be able to draw upon some extremely tangible material circumstances. The case of the fascists will be as direct and simple as that of Hitler’s: our nation must trample other nations in order to survive.

We’re already seeing the beginnings of these frightful propaganda narratives as the capitalist ruling class approaches the climate crisis through a lens of conflict, personal enrichment, and territorialism. Kamala Harris recently stated it’s become common knowledge among U.S. military technocrats that water wars will have to be waged in the near future, showing that peaceful cooperation between countries and resource-sharing aren’t how our leaders will approach the scarcities of the 21st century. As shown by how water was recently made into a tradable commodity in the U.S. stock market, the bourgeoisie and their imperialist military partners view this crisis as a prompting to hoard and exploit. To them, it’s no question as to whether war and conquest are the answers to our predicament.

When this capitalist scarcity mentality mixes with the fascist conviction that the world must be conquered and cleansed of undesirables, you have a recipe for modern Nazistic strains fusing with the power of capital to replicate the horrors of the Third Reich.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

If you appreciate my work, I hope you become a one-time or regular donor to my Patreon account. Like most of us, I’m feeling the economic pinch during late-stage capitalism, and I need money to keep fighting for a new system that works for all of us. Go to my Patreon here.

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

How Climate Collapse Will Overwhelm The U.S. Military & Jeopardize The State’s Existence

The story of the climate’s deterioration is intertwined with the story of class conflict, with the battle between the revolutionaries and the counterrevolutionaries. Much to the chagrin of U.S. national security technocrats, factors show that the instability and destruction from the climate collapse is most likely going to harm the strategic interests of the counterrevolutionaries far more than those of the revolutionaries.

This is partly shown in the fact that the world’s capitalist states, due to the dysfunctionality and social instability they’ve taken on from embracing neoliberalism, are going to be much more susceptible to global warming’s destabilizing effects than the socialist states will be. Notice how in an interview from last year, the author and military expert Michael Klare only lists capitalist countries in his examples of the first places where governmental breakdown will likely occur within this century:

The title of my book is All Hell Breaking Loose, and what that refers to is a time in the not-too-distant future. Not right away, but 10, 20 years down the line when all these horrible things are going to start happening simultaneously. The collapse of major states, like Pakistan, India, the Philippines, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia. It’s very clear from the literature that people in the Defense Department and in the intelligence community are aware that all of this is going to happen. What happens when you have states collapsing, multiple wars happening in the Middle East and Africa and South America, and many hurricanes and disasters in the United States all at the same time? The US military doesn’t have enough troops or resources to both defend the United States and to address all of these foreign catastrophes. That’s what I call an all-hell-breaking-loose scenario, and the Pentagon knows very well that US forces aren’t prepared or capable to deal with it.

In the coming decades, as the U.S. imperialists lose both major neo-colonies like India and major client states like Saudi Arabia, the situation within their own borders will also be one where the continued existence of the capitalist state gets thrown into question. Due to its unparalleled investment in military buildup, the United States is the most vulnerable country among the global imperialist bloc (and likely among an even wider array of capitalist countries) when it comes to destabilizing events. The last year has shown this. Being the only industrialized country in the world without some form of universal healthcare system, and being especially lacking in a social safety net and workers rights as compared to social democratic imperialist powers like Norway and Denmark, the U.S. has lacked the means to protect its people from the pandemic, and consequently become the country with by far the most Covid-19 deaths.

This weakness within the social fabric of the imperial center will carry through into the far worse crises global warming will bring in the next several decades, with these weaknesses no doubt being more pronounced by then due to the country’s ongoing descent into neoliberal austerity. The hunger, homelessness, bankruptcy, and severe consumer debt that we’ve seen balloon within the U.S. in the last year will get far more severe, leading to the potential for growth of the proletarian revolutionary movement within the country’s borders.

And when the time comes for the U.S. military to intervene in an attempt to put down a class revolt and retain stability amid worsening natural disasters — a scenario which U.S. military experts have been very seriously anticipating will be realized — the armed forces will find themselves severely strained. This is what’s hinted at by Klare’s conclusions about the fate of the military’s infrastructure within the country itself:

An awful lot of US military bases are highly exposed and are at great risk from the effects of climate change. Virtually every East Coast naval base is eventually going to be underwater, and nobody is willing to say out loud what the cost of relocation is going to be. For example, the Naval Academy at Annapolis is already flooded on a regular basis, and it won’t be long before that will be underwater year-round. Even though people in the Navy are aware of this, the magnitude of the threat is so great that nobody is willing to say out loud what really has to be done to address it.

According to Klare, this is the extent to which the military is truly preparing for the ways that global warming will cripple its means to operate. The responses from the military that he describes consist either of halfhearted efforts to reduce the military’s carbon emissions, or of defeated acknowledgments about the limitations that the world’s more widespread extreme heat will create upon the ability of U.S. troops and helicopters to move. Not talking about it appears to fill up a lot of the rest of their response. The U.S. will eventually be forced to largely withdraw from Africa and southwest Asia, though this event will come at the cost of these regions also becoming largely uninhabitable for their indigenous residents.

As the imperialist powers reckon with unprecedented refugee crises, pandemics that will likely be worse than Covid-19, agricultural collapse, economic havoc from the climate crisis, breakdowns of the power grid that at least in the U.S. will be undoubtedly severe, and droughts that military technocrats anticipate will prompt water wars, there’s going to be a confrontation between the crippled forces of the capitalist state and an unruly populous.

When the military gets sent in to quell this uprising, the material limitations imposed upon it by climate collapse will make this domestic intervention dysfunctional, however well it’s planned. Even with the Pentagon’s massive budget, its funding capacity falls far below what will be required for keeping U.S. forces fully operational in the midst of the water shortages troops will be facing by 2040 alone; according to a 2019 Pentagon report, this desperately needed windfall would be major investments in technology which locally captures water for U.S. forces. Without water collection tools of this scale, which are evidently too large for even history’s mightiest empire to attain, Washington will have no choice but to shrink its military presence both abroad and at home.

The U.S. military’s problem is that it’s overstretched, a dilemma that will likely also apply to the armed forces of the U.S. allies which will be sent in to try to help crush a hypothetical near-future revolutionary insurgency. Late-stage capitalism’s contradictions are going to become so destabilizing for the countries in the imperialist bloc that they’ll struggle to contain class uprisings, like how Washington has struggled to contain the Taliban despite the Taliban being so outgunned. Climate crisis and neoliberal chaos are the variables that will cripple the forces of counterrevolution. If we revolutionaries make our moves strategically, we’ll be able to use these variables to our advantage instead of getting crushed by the state’s initial counterinsurgency effort.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

If you appreciate my work, I hope you become a one-time or regular donor to my Patreon account. Like most of us, I’m feeling the economic pinch during late-stage capitalism, and I need money to keep fighting for a new system that works for all of us. Go to my Patreon here.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

The Intensification Of Colonial Genocide Is Accelerating The Process Towards America’s Demise

Escalation has consequences. When a government pushes its people too far, a revolt is going to happen that the government may not be able to contain. We’ve seen this in the last year, when the latest series of murders by police following the coming of a new Great Depression resulted in the largest protest movement in U.S. history. And U.S. military experts understand that over these next several decades of ongoing living standards deterioration within the capitalist world, further unrest will come about should the government take its repressive efforts too far; a 2016 Pentagon training video implies that when the U.S. Army gets sent in to suppress internal revolts, it will need to err on the side of caution if it wants to avoid killing civilians and consequently destroying the state’s perceived legitimacy.

But if these technocrats within the U.S. National Security State are so evidently concerned about the blowback from excessive repression, if the strategists of the capitalist settler-colonial project recognize the risks in escalating the class war, why is the U.S. government at the same time doing everything it can to make such escalations more likely? Why has the Biden administration been greatly accelerating the flow of military equipment to police departments when it’s known that more militarized police tend to commit more acts of violence? Why this conscious effort to make the types of racial murders we’ve lately been seeing even more frequent, and therefore to provoke even more Black Lives Matter uprisings?

The U.S. state is putting itself in this kind of jeopardy, is making its law enforcement even more trigger-ready rather than more inclined towards restraint, because militarization and terror are the only tools that it knows how to use. The U.S. exists because of bloodshed exacted against Africans and Natives — the two groups that are still most frequently killed by U.S. police — so its default action when faced with the contradictions within its own system is to intensify this violence. And during the 21st century, where U.S. imperialism is spiraling into irrecoverable decline, the only pattern that the state can follow in is ratcheting up the violence of its police state. There can be no de-escalation, only an increase in the levels of brutality.

The state sees an increase in violence as its only means for self-preservation because violence is without a doubt going to be how the U.S. gets abolished and the subjugation of the oppressed nations gets ended. As Frantz Fanon wrote, “National liberation, national renaissance, the restoration of nationhood to the people, commonwealth: whatever may be the headings used or the new formulas introduced, decolonization is always a violent phenomenon. At whatever level we study it — relationships between individuals, new names for sports clubs, the human admixture at cocktail parties, in the police, on the directing boards of national or private banks — decolonization is quite simply the replacing of a certain ‘species’ of men by another ‘species’ of men.”

The growing militarization of U.S. police that we’ve seen since the inception of Washington’s “War on Terror” (which has allowed excess military equipment to be funneled to police departments) is the state’s pre-emptive response to this reality. As is the U.S. police state’s integration of Zionist colonial policing methods, where Israeli repressive forces have been directly training American police and U.S. domestic security has gotten “Israelified.” Israel’s high-tech innovations in waging colonial war and carrying out colonial repression must be imported into the core of the empire, because the intensive anti-colonial struggle which surrounds Israel is imminently going to come to the U.S. The conflict that U.S. imperialism has brought to Palestine will inevitably appear within U.S. imperialism’s own borders.

What are the factors that are bringing America’s tensions towards such a heightened state? They’re the bleak symptoms of the U.S. empire’s effort throughout this last half-century to compensate for its declining profits by implementing neoliberalism: shrinking of the social safety net, wage stagnation amid inflation, a deeply privatized and wildly costly healthcare system that leaves the poor in peril during crises like Covid-19, growing corporate monopolies that degrade the country’s democratic process and erode workers rights, growing masses of unemployed, hungry, and homeless citizens.

These are the costs of the bourgeoisie’s decision to compensate for the empire’s ailments by foisting the costs of this crisis onto the people. In the neoliberal paradigm they’ve designed, society can only keep getting ever more unequal, and the country can therefore only become ever more of a tinderbox for social upheaval.

As neoliberalism makes colonized peoples poorer, and even makes increasing numbers of white settlers share in the growing misery, the state’s only recourse is violence. There isn’t going to be a repeat of the New Deal, capitalism and imperialism have reached too severe a stage in their crises to be able to afford bringing back the 20th century’s welfare state paradigm. For as long as the United States continues to exist, those within its borders only have to look forward to ever growing poverty and ever more brutal policing tactics.

Since the colonized are both the ones most impacted by the neoliberal drive to economically deprive the population, and have obviously been the very most exploited by colonialism since colonialism’s inception, they’re the first on the chopping block for police state repression. On a broader scale, they’re also the largest victims of social murder, the type of systemic violence where poverty leads to people dying.

The fact that indigenous, brown, and black people have experienced the highest rates of death from the pandemic shows this more dramatically than the numerous other examples of how the colonized can disproportionately die due to their especially high rates of poverty. And it’s not like the settler-colonial state is doing this to the colonized unconsciously; last year, the U.S. Treasury withheld $679 million in pandemic relief from the tribes. A comparable example of negligent or even malicious harm can be found in the U.S. government’s recent treatment of the black community, with the Biden administration surely being aware of the potential for increased anti-black violence that funneling more arms to the police will bring.

These atrocities make sense; in its time of crisis, the U.S. empire is intensifying its colonial genocide as a means for staving off revolution, because an organized and powerful movement among the colonized would pose the greatest possible danger to the settler state’s continued existence. The empire is tightening its de facto military occupation of impoverished black communities while letting social murder proliferate among the colonized population in general, both within U.S. borders and in Washington’s external neo-colonies. Until that anti-colonial socialist revolutionary movement is built, and poor people of all colors unite behind it, the empire will continue to be able to wage war against its captives with impunity.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

If you appreciate my work, I hope you become a one-time or regular donor to my Patreon account. Like most of us, I’m feeling the economic pinch during late-stage capitalism, and I need money to keep fighting for a new system that works for all of us. Go to my Patreon here.

Monday, April 26, 2021

NATO’s Anti-Chinese Propaganda Mirrors Its “Humanitarian” Propaganda About Syria

I’ve been studying war propaganda for years, learning about the insidious ways that the CIA manipulates people into hating disobedient governments. And as I look at the current campaign to portray the situation in Xinjiang as a “genocide” perpetrated by the Chinese government, the example that most comes to my mind is Syria.

Such parallels became apparent while reading this recent repudiation of the U.S. State Department’s Xinjiang accusations from Jeffrey D. Sachs and William Schabas:

The charge of genocide should never be made lightly. Inappropriate use of the term may escalate geopolitical and military tensions and devalue the historical memory of genocides such as the Holocaust, thereby hindering the ability to prevent future genocides. It behooves the US government to make any charge of genocide responsibly, which it has failed to do here…The State Department report refers to mass internment of perhaps one million Uighurs. If proven, that would constitute a gross violation of human rights; but, again, it is not evidence, per se, of intent to exterminate.

(The “one million” figure hasn’t been proven in any capacity, by the way; it all comes from a flimsy study done by the Christian fundamentalist propagandist Adrian Zenz.)

Now look at this 2017 essay from Tim Hayward, who phrased his reputation of Amnesty International’s portrayals of Syria in a remarkably similar way:

In support of its surprisingly quick and decisive stance on intervention, Amnesty International was also accusing the Syrian government of crimes against humanity…Such allegations can have grave implications because they can be taken as warrant for armed intervention. Whereas war crimes do not occur unless there is a war, crimes against humanity can be considered a justification for going to war. And in war, atrocities can occur that would otherwise not have occurred. I find this thought deeply troubling, particularly as a supporter of Amnesty International at the time it called for action, the foreseeable consequences of which included fighting and possible war crimes, by whomsoever committed, that might otherwise never have been. Personally, I cannot quite escape the thought that in willing the means to an end one also shares some responsibility for their unintended consequences.

It’s the exact same deception formula: put forth the most inflammatory claims about the target country possible, and use these claims as justification for the horrific actions the imperialists aim to take against that country. We’ve obviously seen this before with the Iraq WMD narrative. But what Washington has been trying to do to Syria and China is different from the Iraq invasion, and the campaign of lies about them has therefore taken a different form than Bush’s series of alarmist statements about supposed Iraqi weapons. For public relations reasons, the imperialists have wanted to undermine Assad’s government covertly rather than through an outright invasion, and China is almost immeasurably beyond the level of military power needed for successfully countering such a regime change war.

Washington’s strategy for subduing these governments is instead one of hybrid, asymmetrical warfare. In Syria, the U.S. has armed terrorist organizations so that they can try to overthrow Assad as imperialist proxy forces, as well as enabled Rojava and its many atrocities for the purpose of Balkanizing the country. In China, the U.S. has used a pipeline of jihadism (appropriately running from Syria) to foment hundreds of Uyghur separatist terrorist attacks within Xinjiang, as well as given money to the violent right-wing protesters in Hong Kong.

These tactics, combined with steadily tightening sanctions against both countries, have resulted in the carving out of a Kurdish ethnostate in northeastern Syria that Washington has been partnering with to steal Syria’s oil, as well as the killings of hundreds of Chinese people by Washington’s terrorist forces in Hong Kong and western China.

Washington’s end goal for both of these places is the same: fully destabilize the targeted country, Yugoslavia-style, so that the imperialists can seize control over all of their resources. But the empire’s motive for wanting to dismember and mutilate these places isn’t merely related to a desire for wider access to resources, labor, or markets; it stems from a desire to eliminate governments that stand in opposition to Washington’s quest for global geopolitical hegemony. The existence of Assad and the Communist Party of China are abominations in the eyes of the imperialists, simply because they choose to chart their courses independently of the empire’s grasp. So they must be wiped off the face of the earth, whether this entails a campaign to break up their countries into a patchwork of Third World states run by right-wing Washington puppets (like the empire has turned Yugoslavia into), or something even more extreme like turning the countries into full-on failed states with civil wars and modern slave trades (like the empire has turned Libya into).

It’s not just Syria and China that the empire aims to subdue in these monstrous ways, of course. By continuing Trump’s deadly sanctions against the Iranian people, the Biden administration is continuing Washington’s campaign to destabilize Iran’s anti-imperialist government. NATO has been using a combination of sanctions, proxy wars, and covert anti-government propaganda campaigns within Russia to turn the Russian Federation back into a U.S. client state. Washington hopes that through perpetuating its economic embargoes against the DPRK and Cuba, these two socialist countries will collapse and become opened up to getting re-colonized. In the latter country, Washington’s sanctions have been making the economic impacts from the pandemic so painful that Cuba’s government has found itself with no choice but to partially open up its economy.

Such are the dire conditions that the imperialists can still create for the people who dare defy their drive towards world domination. They’re inflicting a version of this kind of harm upon the people of Xinjiang, with U.S. sanctions banning imports from within the province and therefore driving down the economic wellbeing of the Chinese Uyghurs who Washington supposedly seeks to “help.” Through replicating the sleazy propaganda tactics that they applied to Syria — the promotion of fabricated atrocity stories and hyperbolic mischaracterizations, the use of “humanitarian” NGOs to make the empire’s lies appear legitimate, the narrative that an ethnic group like the Kurds or the Uyghurs must create a breakaway state to escape the supposedly evil government — they’re creating hardship for the very people they claim to care about.

But this hardship is all worth it, implies Washington’s China narrative, because it serves to help “liberate” these people from a government so terrible that even a Libya-style dystopian failed state would be better. Washington’s justification for the ban on Xinjiang imports is that these prohibited items were supposedly made through forced Uyghur labor, which comes from the same unreliable sources that have produced the “one million” figure. It’s a twisted campaign to inflict harm upon people who don’t need Washington’s help, made to look respectable purely through deceptive language about “human rights” and a hypocritical propaganda blitz by the NGO-industrial complex. We’ve seen it before in Syria, and it hasn’t ended well for those impacted by the empire’s actions.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

If you appreciate my work, I hope you become a one-time or regular donor to my Patreon account. Like most of us, I’m feeling the economic pinch during late-stage capitalism, and I need money to keep fighting for a new system that works for all of us. Go to my Patreon here.

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Refugee Crises On Top Of Refugee Crises: The Bleak Future Of Those Within U.S. Borders

In the world that our decaying capitalist order is going to create, the types of desperation that afflict the victims of Washington’s imperialist wars in Syria, Libya, and elsewhere will be experienced by ever growing amounts of those within U.S. borders. Our status as the imperial epicenter makes us blind to this reality; when we think of the refugee crises of the 21st century, we always think merely of the people who will be driven to try to come into our borders. But what about those already living within our borders who will be forced to flee?

“When we contemplate this possibility of ‘societal collapse’, it can seem abstract,” writes Professor Jem Bendell in his paper on adapting to the climate crisis. “The previous paragraphs may seem, subconsciously at least, to be describing a situation to feel sorry about as we witness scenes on TV or online. But when I say starvation, destruction, migration, disease and war, I mean in your own life. With the power down, soon you wouldn’t have water coming out of your tap. You will depend on your neighbours for food and some warmth. You will become malnourished. You won’t know whether to stay or go. You will fear being violently killed before starving to death.”

What’s essential to understand about this reality of a coming social collapse throughout the capitalist world is that it’s by design. The billionaires who are profiting off of crises like the pandemic, the military technocrats who plan to facilitate post-collapse operations like water wars, and their aligned forces in the reactionary militias are preparing for a scenario where the same imperialist tactics used against places like Afghanistan and Yemen are applied to the core of the empire. In an era where capital is going to be destabilized drastically by the catastrophes at play, these tactics are the only hope for maintaining bourgeois dominance.

In addition to the countries I’ve mentioned where U.S. interventions have taken place, the example of imperialist destabilization and carve-up that haunts me the most while considering America’s bleak near future is Yugoslavia. Throughout the NATO campaign to dismantle Europe’s last bastion of socialism, infrastructure, hospitals, schools, and homes were bombed, and NATO at one point even bombedAlbanian refugees in its carelessness. These acts of destruction served to allow the imperialists to integrate pro-NATO propaganda networks into the nation, carve up the land for the installation of Washington puppet regimes, and enact neoliberal policies which looted the populous. As Michael Parenti wrote in The Rational Destruction of Yugoslavia:

The dismemberment and mutilation of Yugoslavia was part of a concerted policy initiated by the United States and the other Western powers in 1989…The U.S. goal has been to transform the Yugoslav nation into a Third-World region, a cluster of weak right-wing principalities with the following characteristics: incapable of charting an independent course of self-development; a shattered economy and natural resources completely accessible to multinational corporate exploitation, including the enormous mineral wealth in Kosovo; an impoverished, but literate and skilled population forced to work at subsistence wages, constituting a cheap labor pool that will help depress wages in western Europe and elsewhere; dismantled petroleum, engineering, mining, fertilizer, and automobile industries, and various light industries, that offer no further competition with existing Western producers.

As those of us within the U.S. experience refugee crises on top of refugee crises in the coming decades amid our own country’s “third worldization,” we can expect to be targeted with by same imperialist model: destroy the foundations of a society, pacify the population through terror and propaganda, and seize whatever wealth is made available through this manufactured chaos.

I don’t use this phrase “refugee crises on top of refugee crises” hyperbolically. This is an objective description of what the signs say will happen to this country in the coming generation. A 2018 study published in The Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists suggests that over the next half-century, global warming will force 1 in 12 Americans  in the southern half of the country to migrate to California, the Mountain West, or the Northwest. Environmental reporter Abrahm Lustgarten wrote last year that “Such a shift in population is likely to increase poverty and widen the gulf between the rich and the poor. It will accelerate rapid, perhaps chaotic, urbanization of cities ill-equipped for the burden, testing their capacity to provide basic services and amplifying existing inequities. It will eat away at prosperity, dealing repeated economic blows to coastal, rural and Southern regions, which could in turn push entire communities to the brink of collapse.”

It’s for these reasons — and for even more sinister ones — that this migration of tens of millions of U.S. citizens due to climate influences alone will be only the first wave of the country’s internal refugee crisis. This initial wave of internal U.S. climate migration, which has already begun with the evacuation of tens of thousands from climatic disaster zones during the last year alone, will be compounded by a second series of disasters which force people to flee. These disasters will partly come from the additional climatic disasters which will afflict the areas the refugees are expected to flee towards; the Pacific Northwest and the Mountain West are to be increasingly affected by fires, and California’s future is one of drought. But the primary reason why these near-future “safe” zones will themselves be rendered largely unsafe is that it will serve the bourgeoisie’s interests to destabilize them and cut them off from humanitarian aid.

The vicious cycle of poverty and deprivation that Lustgarten describes for the future refugee-crowded zones is not unavoidable. Capitalism, with its drive towards carrying out ever more destructive amounts of neoliberal shock therapy, is choosing to set these places on a path towards desperate conditions, to engineer mass suffering. The cutting off of social services, the privatization of resources like healthcare and education, the price gouging of electricity and water during disasters, the lowering of wages, and the expansion of corporate monopolies are all laws when it comes to how neoliberalism responds to climatic disasters. It’s these kleptocratic policies which will facilitate what’s estimated to be the greatest upward transfer of wealth in U.S. history as a result of global warming. Our socioeconomic system has tied us into a future of needless and ever greater scarcity.

And this isn’t even the most frightening aspect of the compounding humanitarian crisis that our ruling class is going to engineer. The U.S. military has plans, made for a scenario of great instability within U.S. borders, where the army will be sent in to invade and occupy the country’s urban areas. These operations are described to entail the shutdown of internet and cell phone access within the occupied zones, the imposition of official U.S. military propaganda through making local media in the occupied zones only put out the military’s carefully crafted narratives, the use of mass surveillance against the occupied populations through spies and digital monitoring, and the use of Israeli-style warfare tactics for smoking out potential members of near-future class revolts. We could see repeats of the U.S. government’s 1985 bombing of a Philadelphia city block to destroy a black liberation group, except on an unfathomably wider scale. In response, the people within these U.S.-located conflict zones Washington has created will be forced to leave like the victims of Washington’s regime change war in Syria have had to leave.

Faced with a decline in profits, a shrinking of global U.S. geopolitical influence, and an environmental crisis that will plunge our civilization into chaos, our ruling class can only maintain their power by importing the destabilization tactics they’ve used abroad. Seeing the fundamental inability of our socioeconomic system to remain stable amid the climate crisis, they’re going to inflict destabilization upon the population as a pre-emptive move, one which will allow them to loot the masses Yugoslavia-style while retreating to fortified doomsday bunkers. Unless we turn their plan on its head and carry out a proletarian revolution.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

If you appreciate my work, I hope you become a one-time or regular donor to my Patreon account. Like most of us, I’m feeling the economic pinch during late-stage capitalism, and I need money to keep fighting for a new system that works for all of us. Go to my Patreon here.