The Summit of the Americas is not a summit of the U.S., said a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson on Monday, calling on the U.S. to hear the reasonable call for justice of regional countries and make the summit focus on the regional agenda to promote solidarity, cooperation and people's wellbeing.
Produced by Xinhua Global Service
A paratrooper conducts security at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 29, 2021. (U.S. Army Photo by Master Sgt. Alexander Burnett/Handout via Xinhua)
WASHINGTON/GENEVA, Dec. 8 (Xinhua) -- Open any book on American history, and hardly can you find a long period of time when the country was not part of a conflict. Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter simply referred to it as "the most warlike nation in the history of the world."
There are historical, commercial, and geopolitical contexts behind the lust for wars, in which the United States has gained independence, interests, and influence. Over the past decades, the country has launched or engaged in wars all over the world in a never-ending endeavor to establish and retain hegemony.
The United States, according to diagnoses of historians and scholars, has morphed into a perpetual war machine that feeds on and profits from warfare, with the mighty military-industrial complex at the helm and media complicit in justifying government policies and whitewashing its actions, leaving the war mania beyond cure.
FEEDING ON WARS
"Our nation was born in genocide," American civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. wrote in his 1963 book Why We Can't Wait. "We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population."
The United States was founded on 13 British colonies in North America where the indigenous, some of who helped the first Europeans to settle down on the continent, had lived for thousands of years. However, instead of acknowledging the rights of the Native Americans or Indians after the Revolutionary War, the federal government embarked on a century-long campaign to eliminate them.
"We massacred them," Alfred-Maurice de Zayas, an American-Swiss historian and former United Nations independent expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, told Xinhua during an interview in Geneva, Switzerland. "We demonized the Indians. We call them devils. We call them wolves ... and it was a lot easier if you demonize your rival in order to kill them."
In Westward Expansion under the so-called Manifest Destiny, a 19th-century doctrine that Americans were destined to expand across the continent, the United States extended its western border to the Pacific Ocean following a chain of land purchases and annexations, along with significant territorial gains after the Mexico-American War in the 1840s.
"U.S. territorial expansion from 1789 to 1854 -- from sea to shining sea -- was the most rapid and extensive in human history," Paul Atwood, senior lecturer in American Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, contended in a 2003 article titled War is the American way of life. "It was carried out by armed violence with genocidal results."
In the 1890s, the United States began actively pursuing overseas expansion, decades after the Civil War put America's foreign policy objectives on hold, as senior government officials came to believe that their country is entitled to compete for "naval and commercial supremacy of the Pacific Ocean and the Far East," according to the late American historian Julius Pratt, who specialized in foreign relations and imperialism.
The United States became a Pacific power after the 1898 war with Spain, with new territorial claims stretching from the Caribbean to Southeast Asia, and was elevated to a superpower after World War II. "We tell ourselves that we have emerged from this war the most powerful nation in the world," then U.S. President Harry Truman declared in a speech from the White House on Aug. 9, 1945.
Over the previous decades, the militarily powerful United States has intervened in or waged a succession of significant wars, including the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the Gulf War, while initiating or being involved in numerous overt and covert operations.
The global "War on Terror," which the United States launched in response to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, was extended to an astonishing number of 85 countries between 2018 and 2020, and the world's sole superpower controls about 750 bases in at least 80 countries worldwide and spends more on its armed forces than the next 10 countries combined, studies have found.
"This state of war is the norm in U.S. history," author and professor of political anthropology David Vine concluded in his 2020 book The United States of War: A Global History of America's Endless Conflicts, from Columbus to the Islamic State.
According to the Congressional Research Service, a public policy research institute of the U.S. Congress, American troops have staged wars, engaged in combat, or otherwise invaded foreign lands in all but less than 20 years of its existence. "The people of the United States have arguably never been at peace," commented Nikhil Pal Singh, professor of social and cultural analysis and history at New York University.
"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex," then U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower said in his farewell speech from the White House on Jan. 17, 1961. "The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist."
Despite Eisenhower's warning, the formidable union of the military, private defense contractors, and the government has grown stronger and more entwined. Daniel Kovalik, adjunct professor of law at the University of Pittsburgh, told Xinhua during an interview via video link that the tremendous vested interest that the retired five-star Army general was talking about "was nothing compared to what it is today."
According to Brown University data, the Pentagon has spent over 14 trillion U.S. dollars since the start of the Afghanistan War, with between one-third and half of that going to for-profit defense contractors. Meanwhile, over the last two decades, weapon manufacturers were estimated to have spent over 2.5 billion dollars on lobbying, employing hundreds of lobbyists per year.
Furthermore, because of the revolving door, high-ranking Pentagon officials frequently leave their government jobs to work for defense contractors as lobbyists, board members, executives, or consultants.
Kovalik said it explains why the U.S. war in Afghanistan, which ended after a hasty pullout in late August, lasted nearly 20 years.
"Because the defense industry companies that make the bombs, that make the planes, that make the vehicles, and also the private military contractors that now are fighting the wars in lieu of public military personnel, they made trillions of dollars as long as the war continued," he expounded. "So they didn't care if the war was ever won, the goal was for the war to simply continue forever."
De Zayas also chastised U.S. intelligence operatives and the media for spreading fabricated information and fake news to name and shame its targets and stoke public discontent before and during the intervention. National security, democracy, freedom, human rights, and humanitarianism are the themes of narratives they have sought to create and promote.
"The idea is to anesthetize the population so that they accept regime change so that they accept a military intervention to achieve regime change," he said.
In an article published by The Washington Post in September, Katrina vanden Heuvel, editorial director and publisher of U.S. magazine The Nation, suggested that "the military-industrial complex's sheer breadth of influence -- to the point where it might more accurately be called the military-industrial-congressional-media complex -- can make dismantling the system seem hopeless."
DAMAGE TO WORLD
The New York Times published in November an investigative report, disclosing that the U.S. military covered up the 2019 airstrikes that killed up to 64 women and children in Syria. The revelation came less than two months after the Pentagon acknowledged the last U.S. drone strike before American troops exited from Afghanistan mistakenly killed 10 civilians, including seven children.
Unfortunately, such possible war crimes would likely be forgotten quickly because no one appears to be able to hold the United States accountable. When the International Criminal Court (ICC) was seeking to investigate American personnel for alleged crimes in Afghanistan years ago, the U.S. government responded by imposing sanctions on ICC officials and threatening more actions against The Hague, Netherlands-based tribunal.
The civilian deaths, however, were only a drop in the bucket of tragic consequences from America's unchecked drone strikes in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, and Yemen, and only a speck of the human toll inflicted by Washington's addiction to violence and war in pursuit of resources, geopolitical clout, and hegemony. The post-9/11 wars alone were reported to have killed more than 900,000 people.
Meanwhile, the "endless wars" have wreaked havoc on many countries and cities, resulting in a tangle of political, economic, and social complexities that have obstructed the rebuilding and revival of economies and civilizations. "If we can't just overthrow you, we will destroy you," Kovalik said. "That's what the U.S. has done time and again."
When the U.S. troops fled from the Vietnam War, they left a devastated land riddled with millions of land mines and unexploded ordnances, which had also been defoliated by millions of gallons of Agent Orange, a deadly herbicide that causes cancer, neurological damage, and birth defects. Since 1975, over 40,000 Vietnamese have died from the deadly remnants of war, and over 60,000 have been injured.
In Afghanistan, decades of war have not only shattered the country but also traumatized its people. The International Psychosocial Organisation, a non-profit agency, reported in 2019 that 70 percent of the country's population needs psychological support.
"Numbers certainly can tell us only so much. Quickly they can become numbing. Ultimately, there's no adequate way to measure the immensity of the damage these wars have inflicted on all the people in all the countries affected," Vine, also assistant professor at American University, stressed in his book.
"International polls showed that world opinion regarded the U.S. as the greatest threat to world peace, no other country even close," renowned American linguist and foreign policy critic Noam Chomsky said during an interview with U.S. magazine CounterPunch in August.
What Chomsky was referring to appeared to be a global survey conducted by the World Independent Network and Gallup in 2013, in which the United States had been voted by respondents from over 60 countries as the most significant threat to world peace, and a Pew poll in 2017 that showed 39 percent of respondents across 38 countries consider American influence and power a major threat to their countries.
"America has never cared to help those we have pretended to 'save' by these wars. For that reason alone, America has never had the broad support of local populations that would have been essential for any kind of success in these misguided wars," Jeffrey Sachs, American economist and public policy analyst, wrote in an article published by The Boston Globe in September.
"Our nation has been at war for centuries," Sachs continued. "Will the United States adopt a new foreign policy based on peace and problem-solving? That's the real question."
As part of our ongoing and enthusiastic support of Georgian institutions of art and creativity, the U.S. Embassy co-sponsored the 2021 Tbilisi Photography Festival which opened this Wednesday
This year is the 20th anniversary of the deadly attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on Sept 11.
The date, September 11, will forever evoke recollections of unimaginable tragedy, of lives callously lost and brutally cut short and of unspeakable horror and sorrow in the hearts and minds of all of us. We have all suffered.
We have all felt the heartbreak of loss in lives. It was a horrible realization of the depths of the hatred that a select few in the world have for the United States, and a terrible tragedy. We must never forget the depths of inhumanity to which terrorist fanatics are willing to sink in the name of their depraved cause as they seek to destroy the very principles of freedom and democracy on which this great nation was founded. America has never made a mistake in its policy.
Remember that we were attacked not for what we do wrong but for what we do right. We will not crumble under terror or tyranny! America are strong and resilient. Today is a day to remember the heroes of that day, the lives and loved ones lost, and to dedicate anew that every day we live on, we have already defeated hate. That is why each and every September 11, we as friends of the American people honor them who lost their lives that fateful day.
On this 20th anniversary of 9/11, let us never forget the nearly 3,000 Americans who lost their lives and continue to support their families. Let us also never forget the service and sacrifice of our brave first responders and servicemembers who answered the call to serve the greatest nation on earth. May God continue to bless the United States of America.”
President of the American Friendship Club
September 11, 2021 Tbilisi, Georgia.
Georgia is a democratic U.S. ally that has sent troops to both Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the US Security Strategy, which is entitled “Strengthening America & Countering Global Threats” and is signed by 13 Congressmen.
The document refers to the strengthening of Georgia’s readiness and defense capabilities by enacting the Georgia Support Act. “The Task Force believes that Congress should continue to work to strengthen Georgia’s readiness and defense capabilities by approving arms sales to Georgia in support of its efforts against Russian aggression, offering military assistance, and improving Georgia’s interoperability with NATO. The Georgia Support Act, which has passed the House but not the Senate, mandates a report on how the United States can work with Georgia to counter Russian disinformation and ensure Georgian security needs. It also requires the president to impose sanctions against foreign persons responsible for or complicit in serious human rights abuses in the Russian-occupied Georgian regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali”, reads the document signed by RSC Chairman, Rep. Mike Johnson; Rep. Ann Wagner; Rep. Jack Bergman; Rep. Ralph Norman; Rep. Rob Wittman; Rep. Michael Waltz; Task Force Chairman, Rep. Joe Wilson; Rep. Alex Mooney; Rep. Neal Dunn; Rep. Dan Crenshaw; Rep. Bryan Steil; Rep. Don Bacon; Rep. Clay Higgins.
The document also addresses the need to impose sanctions on the leaders of Russia's disinformation campaign. “Sanctions on Russia should be extended to the leaders of its disinformation campaigns. Additionally, current sanctions have not sufficiently addressed Putin’s foreign cronies who undermine the sovereignty of former-Soviet countries.”
“Bidzina Ivanishvili, the richest man in Georgia, is a close ally of Putin and involved in destabilizing Georgia on Russia’s behalf.” Viktor Medvedchuk is a proRussian oligarch and proxy in Ukraine who has used his media empire to actively assist Russia’s efforts to spread harmful disinformation within the country.282 Furthermore, the Department of State should produce a report listing Kremlin-connected oligarchs who help finance Russian military aggression through proxies and mercenary armies. Such a report would be useful for Congress to determine the necessity of future sanctions and would deter individuals and entities from working with the Kremlin.”
The authors of the document recommend to sanction Russian propaganda chiefs and those undermining U.S. partners from the former Soviet Union and to direct the Department of State to produce a report on Kremlin-connected oligarchs who finance Russian military aggression.
Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy, Charge’ d’affairs’ (CDA) of America Elizabeth H. Rood visited IBSU
On Monday, April 2, 2018 the Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy, Charge’ d’affairs’ (CDA) of America Elizabeth H. Rood visited the American Studies students and professors of the Faculty of
Education and Humanities at the International Black Sea University.
Elizabeth Rood discussed the current state of U.S.- Georgia relations and answer their questions.
Mike Pence: “We are here today, with the steadfast assurance of the United States of America to tell our friends in Georgia: We are with you!”
“We stand with you because we know the wisdom of that ancient Georgian saying there is -- “strength is in unity.” So in unity, together, we will be strong in arms. The President sent me here to this place, at this time simply to thank all -- thank you for stepping up to serve your nations, for standing in the gap on this great frontier -- united in the defense of freedom. You are the best of us -- heroes all. United States and Georgia are bound together by the abiding oath of friendship and by our shared commitment to the cause of freedom.” – these words were addressed by US Vice President Mike Pens to Georgian and American soldiers which are participating in a multinational exercise "Nobel Partner 2017", at Alekseevka Aviation Base.
In his speech US Vice President underlined the importance of the exercise and mentioned that the strategic partnership between the United States and Georgia is stronger now than ever before: “This joint exercise is a tangible sign of our commitment to each other to make it stronger still. Exercise Noble Partner brings together the Armed Forces of the United States, of Georgia, and many other nations to train together and execute complex operations. Noble Partner will strengthen Georgia’s ability to defend itself in the years ahead. It will prepare Georgian soldiers to join NATO’s Response Force in the future. This exercise is a testament to your professionalism, to the high value that the United States and our NATO allies place on Georgia’s security”.
Mike Pence also recalled Georgian peacekeepers who’ve given their lives in Afghanistan and emphasized that the American people remember their sacrifice and their families on this day.
US Vice President once again expressed support of the United States for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders and said that The United States of America, under President Donald Trump, will reject any claim, at any time, by any nation that undermines this enduring principle.
President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili and Defence Minister of Georgia Levan Izoria welcomed Georgian and American military units. “The Armed Forces of our countries are on Georgian soil to defend our dignity, security and freedom. That’s why you are nobles and your partnership is very important for our common well-being,” said Giorgi Margvelashvili.
The Minister of Defence emphasized the importance of multinational exercise and the visit of the US Vice President: “The name Noble Partner has not been randomly selected. This name was deserved by the reliability, contribution and devotion of our soldiers. The visit of the US Vice President is a support for Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, as well as the support of our democratic development”.
After completing the official part of the event held in the Alekseevka Aviation Base, US Vice President Mike Pence spoke to Georgian and American soldiers personally and took memorable photos.
Mike Pence has completed an official visit to Georgia with a meeting with the participants of "Noble Partner 2017".
LUXEMBOURG, 15 MAY 2017 -- SES (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG) announced today that the SES-10 satellite is now fully operational at 67 degrees West and will be serving the thriving markets in the Latin America region.
SES-10 was launched on 30 March 2017 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre in Florida onboard a flight-proven SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. The satellite is the first geostationary commercial satellite ever launched on a flight-proven first-stage rocket booster.
Since then, extensive in-orbit tests have confirmed the flawless functioning of the spacecraft.
SES-10 was built by Airbus Defence and Space and is based on the Eurostar E3000 platform. The multi-mission spacecraft is the first SES satellite dedicated to providing service to Latin America and has a Ku-band payload of 55 36MHz transponder equivalents, of which 27 are incremental. SES-10's high-powered beams will augment SES’s capabilities across the region and will provide direct-to-home broadcasting, enterprise and mobility services to Mexico, Central America, South America and the Caribbean.
Pursuant to an agreement with the Andean Community (Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru), the satellite will operate as the Andean Community’s Simón Bolivar 2, providing satellite capacity for each Andean Member State. The Andean satellite project came from the shared Member States’ interest in having a common satellite network to take advantage of the Andean spectrum resources at 67 degrees West.
Follow us on:
Media Gallery: https://www.ses.com/media-gallery
SES White papers are available under: https://www.ses.com/news/whitepapers
SES is the world-leading satellite operator and the first to deliver a differentiated and scalable GEO-MEO offering worldwide, with more than 50 satellites in Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) and 12 in Medium Earth Orbit (MEO). SES focuses on value-added, end-to-end solutions in two key business units; SES Video and SES Networks. The company provides satellite communications services to broadcasters, content and internet service providers, mobile and fixed network operators, governments and institutions. SES’s portfolio includes the ASTRA satellite system, which has the largest Direct-to-Home (DTH) television reach in Europe, O3b Networks, a global managed data communications service provider, and MX1, a leading media service provider that offers a full suite of innovative digital video and media services. Further information available at: www.ses.com
About the Andean Community
The Andean Community is a multi-national integration process founded in 1969 under the Cartagena Agreement. CAN is comprised of four Member States: Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. The Andean Community’s integration process includes several institutions all with the objective of strengthening integration of the Member States and achieving more balanced and autonomous socio- economic development. Telecommunications development is a priority for the Andean Community and is considered a cornerstone of this integration process. For the Andean Community, SES-10 represents a significant milestone towards meeting the objectives of the Cartagena Agreement and, in particular, the goal of regional integration.
The Republic of Georgia has again demonstrated its deep commitment to Western values. Through the ballot box and for the second time in four years, Georgians last month showcased their sound democracy, vibrant pluralistic society and deep commitment to the values of the trans-Atlantic community. Results of this year’s parliamentary elections repeated and deepened the positive outcomes of their previous election in 2012.
Nearly unique among the new states formed from the old U.S.S.R., Georgia’s main parties all subscribed to and campaigned on Georgia’s strong attachment to Europe and NATO, and all favor a strong strategic anchor with the United States. Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili told me and stated publicly that this process is “irreversible,” a sentiment that resonates throughout Georgian society.
What can the U.S. do to support these solid achievements in Georgia and the aspirations behind them? Several reasonable options warrant close attention from the next administration. None requires significant expenditures and all directly advance American interests.
First, the barriers in Georgia’s pathway to NATO membership should be removed, and Georgia should receive a membership action plan without further delay. Georgians have paid their dues. Georgia volunteered its fighters to stand shoulder to shoulder with American and other NATO soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In per capita terms, Georgia’s contribution of manpower has been greater than all other NATO members except the U.S. This includes those European countries that have been somewhat cool toward Georgia’s membership in NATO. Germany, with a population of 81 million, lost 55 of its soldiers in NATO’s service in Afghanistan, while Georgia, with only 4.9 million inhabitants, lost 32 of its brave soldiers, a notable difference of scale.
NATO has recently extended its presence in Georgia by setting up a Joint Training and Evaluation Center. NATO should also tap Georgia’s unique perspective on its complex region. It has firsthand experience with Russian subversion; it borders restive Turkey; and it has an evolving relationship with its neighbor, Iran. These suggest several opportunities, including prospective intelligence sharing and counterintelligence operations.
Russia offers predictable complaints that for Georgia to join NATO would be a provocation. Concern about Russia’s probable reaction persuaded some NATO members that Georgia’s move toward NATO should be delayed. Yet recent NATO summits have repeatedly acknowledged Georgia’s contribution to the West’s security, while promising action on its application for full membership. The time to act is now. The West’s security interests should not be held hostage to Russian disapproval.
The Russian army continues to occupy more than 20% of Georgia’s territory, which it seized during its 2008 invasion of Georgia. Russia’s evolving imperial vision, which already includes parts of Ukraine and all of Crimea, is not compatible with the West’s values and security concerns.
Discussions aimed at the return of these Georgian territories have shown little progress. Meanwhile, Russian troops are stealthily moving the borders of the land they occupy deeper into Georgian territory. The U.S. must raise its profile in talks to resolve these matters and be prepared to take further measures to raise the cost to Russia of its occupation of Georgian territory.
It is time for the U.S. to acknowledge Georgia’s importance and help to make it an active participant in planning and strategy for the region. Georgia is a major energy transport route from the Caspian to America’s allies in Europe. It provides a barrier to the flow of jihadists from other parts of the former Soviet Union to the Middle East. And it will doubtless figure large in the strategies of any NATO consortium for securing the Black Sea and “New Europe” against Russian adventurism.
Beyond this, the U.S. should be more active in the development of the new East-West transport corridors, in which Georgia and the Caucasus play a central role. Its ports on the Black Sea will send and receive goods and raw materials from Asia and Europe, linking the entire Eurasian continent. An American company is currently constructing a deep-water port on Georgia’s Black Sea coast at Anaklia that will be able to accommodate the largest freighters. Georgia may be a small country but it is destined to become a linchpin connecting the economies of Europe and Asia.
For all these reasons the U.S. should act now to deepen its engagement with Georgia, not as an act of philanthropy but because America’s vital interests are at stake there. The people of Georgia have shown what good governance, strong democracy and an attachment to Western values can accomplish, even against daunting odds. Georgia is an ally we need and should welcome.