Why the US Can’t Change, Part 3

Posted on 17/01/2011 by

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In Part 2, I wrote about why the US government had chosen the ‘die’ option. Here, I will roughly sketch out how I expect the US government will destabilise, and eventually collapse.

An important internal brake against governmental change in the US comes from the US citizenry itself; a goodly number of people, apparently, see nothing wrong with the status quo. The support which the citizenry lends to the government out of blind loyalty will do much to preserve the institution’s lifespan.

However, there is nothing which will now prevent the collapse of the US government. It has gone beyond the point of no return; choosing to persecute, rather than accept, Cablegate was the beginning of the end.

The first effects of ‘death’ have already been seen: spastic and uncoordinated efforts to censor information about WikiLeaks and Cablegate. Those efforts have failed, and have instead served to strengthen the WikiLeaks ‘team’ by expanding the pool of participating news organs, as well as involving more common people than ever before. The flood of cables continues, and will only increase in quantity and sources.

Unintended consequences of attempting to censor Cablegate have not only backfired, but will prove in itself damaging to the US government. The censorship has had the effect of immobilising the ability of the government to process information related to Cablegate, as well as chilling inter-divisional lines of communication. This will increasingly manifest as the second effect of death: divisions will have more and more disparate policies and reactions from others.

All the hundreds of divisions are locked in competition with each other, and are typically seeking manners in which to boost their division’s finances and prestige at the cost of competitor divisions. Without the information necessary to coordinate on a topic so vital as Cablegate, divisions will be drawn into ‘turf wars’, simply because 1) they can, and 2) there is nothing to stop them. Such turf wars will be self-reinforcing, and also serve to further immobilise the US government. It’s quite possible that these turf wars will become publicly evident, with (for example) the FBI arresting former CIA agents on suspicions of leaking.

The next step is a bit foggier, but I suspect it will centre around a catastrophic military defeat of the US. Mostly likely this will be an attack against either Iran or North Korea; the more likely target being Iran. The attack will be a ploy in several ways: 1) reassert a war-time condition for purposes of free-speech crackdowns; 2) attempt to engineer a recovery of the government’s public opinion, as well as faux-economic vitality; and 3) to reassert the secrecy necessary to rebuild the State Department spy network, and get recalcitrant allies back in line.

With this defeat the US will enter a rapid economic, political, and military tailspin. Any attack on Iran is doomed to failure; this is axiomatic. Not only will the US military be bloodied and disgraced, but it will also be overextended. Economically this will be disasterous as well, because confidence in the US government will be shaken by both extreme military adventurism, failure. Politically, the government itself will lose virtually all credibility, at least externally, but potentially internally as well.

At this point will be a crossroads: on one side is a slow grinding down of the US; and on the other, a fast dissolution by outside action.

The slow collapse will entail successive military failures across the world, coupled with a quiet but steady economic isolation of the US as a pariah country. Eventually the US hegemony will contract in on itself, to the point where the US base system will be economically untenable. The end state of this will be an isolated US, with a shattered military and economy, a Third World living standard, and a banana republic government.

The rapid dissolution scenario represents a completely different path and outcome, however. Instead of internal collapse, the US will be dismantled by concerted efforts of other countries across the world in the interests of self-defence and economic stability. Out of the many things which Cablegate has revealed, one of the most disturbing for the rest of the world, is just how much the world economy rests upon the US. An uncontrolled – albeit slow – collapse of the US will necessarily perpetuate a dragging down of the rest of the world.

To mitigate this, non-US compliant countries will act to defang the US following its military defeat: bases will be disarmed and soldiers shipped home; banks and credit card systems will be nationalised; and the US Dollar will be vastly devalued.

The political fallout of this will likely destabilise the US government sufficiently to allow for its replacement with a provisional government, probably headed by a widely trusted US public figure. This new government will immediately make similar motions as did the Japanese provisional government at the end of WWII: surrender, either to a broad coalition (eg Commonwealth of Nations) or the United Nations.

After this, the US will soon cease to exist as a political entity. In a manner akin to Igor Panarin’s model of the break-up of the US, various sections of the US will be ‘granted’ by the provisional government to foreign countries, on foreign ‘advice’. I take some exceptions with Mr Panarin’s model, but for the most part, I think it will be accurate.

In the end, the US will be disassembled like Nazi Germany or Imperial China, but it will never be allowed to reassemble. The damage which the US has caused the rest of the world is too great to allow the risk of a rebuilt US empire. The outcome of this scenario is generally happier, but it will entail great stress. The former US will be reformed into normal and mostly civilised countries, albeit with vastly changed lifestyles and outlooks.

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Posted in: WikiLeaks