Friday, September 22, 2017

Fact Check: Updating Cold War Myths About Thailand

September 23, 2017 (Joseph Thomas - NEO) - Many honest, busy analysts outside established media circles in the United States and Europe are plagued by mythologies stemming from once pseudo-truths they simply lack the time or energy to dig into and finally correct.


Among them are enduring myths about the Southeast Asian state of Thailand and its relationship with the United States. These myths stem from its role during the Vietnam War and are now not only outdated, they are destructive to the truth to a point where they aid rather than impede the very special interests upon Wall Street and in Washington many of these analysts seek to expose and confront.

US-Thai Relations During the Vietnam War  

During the Vietnam War, Thailand hosted US forces on its territory. It contributed a number of its own troops in supporting roles throughout Southeast Asia and conducted its own military campaign domestically against heavily armed Communist militants. It is easy to conclude that Thailand was an eager ally then, and easy to see why many analysts assume this is still the case today.

However, in reality, the history of Thailand is of the only nation in Southeast Asia to avoid Western colonisation. It is also the story of a nation that survived the World Wars by expertly aligning itself amid greater powers, neither significantly contributing to nor suffering from contests of powers between more powerful nations.

During the Second World War, Thailand tenuously aligned with the Japanese. It played no significant role in a war the Japanese ultimately lost. Upon Japan's defeat, Thailand would once again balance its relationships evenly among its Asian neighbours and the Western victors of the war.

The Vietnam War was likewise a regional war started by foreign powers. It devastated not only Vietnam itself, but neighbouring Laos and Cambodia as well. Despite escaping the worst of the fighting, Thailand lost over a thousand soldiers and police amid security operations within its own borders. It fought allegedly Communist fighters, based primarily in Udon Thani, coincidentally where the US maintained its intelligence apparatus.

In hindsight of the current so-called "War on Terror," where the US uses terrorism both as a proxy force against its enemies and as a pretext and pressure point for manoeuvring against its supposed allies, it appears a similar arrangement unfolded in Southeast Asia. Readers should keep in mind that this includes the supposedly leftist Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia backed by the United States being ultimately overthrown by Communist Vietnam forces. Geopolitically, it appears the US supports allies and agents of convenience rather than those who share their supposed ideologies.

Despite supplying Thailand with a large amount of US weapons, conducting annual military exercises with the Royal Thai Armed Forces and claiming Thailand as one of America's oldest and closest allies in Southeast Asia, upon America's withdrawal in Vietnam, America's influence and ties with Bangkok incrementally diminished over time.

Thailand Today is not the Vietnam-Era US Ally of Yesterday 

Claims that Thailand ever was a "close ally" of America are tenuous at best. Regardless of how one splits hairs regarding Bangkok and Washington's past, Thailand today is undoubtedly in the process of yet another historical realignment, reflecting the geopolitical shifts taking place worldwide as America's global influence declines.


Friday, September 8, 2017

US to Fight US-Saudi Sponsored Terrorism in Asia

September 8, 2017 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) - With the recent attack on police in Myanmar by terrorists described by Reuters as "Muslim insurgents," and ongoing terrorism plaguing the Philippines where forces are engaged with militants from the so-called "Islamic State," it would appear that terrorism has spread into Southeast Asia with no signs of waning. 


However, the sudden uptick in violence comes at a time when America's so-called "pivot to Asia" has ground to a complete halt, providing the United States with an all-too-convenient pretext to reengage and establish itself across the region in a much more insidious manner. 


US Sought Military Presence in Southeast Asia for Decades but Lacked a Pretext, Until Now 

The United States has openly conspired to establish and expand a permanent military presence in Southeast Asia as a means to confront, encircle, and contain China for decades.

As early as the Vietnam War, with the so-called "Pentagon Papers" released in 1969, it was revealed that the conflict was simply one part of a greater strategy aimed at containing and controlling China.

Three important quotes from these papers reveal this strategy. It states first that: 
“...the February decision to bomb North Vietnam and the July approval of Phase I deployments make sense only if they are in support of a long-run United States policy to contain China.”
It also claims:
“China—like Germany in 1917, like Germany in the West and Japan in the East in the late 30′s, and like the USSR in 1947—looms as a major power threatening to undercut our importance and effectiveness in the world and, more remotely but more menacingly, to organize all of Asia against us.” 
Finally, it outlines the immense regional theater the US was engaged in against China at the time by stating: 
“there are three fronts to a long-run effort to contain China (realizing that the USSR “contains” China on the north and northwest): (a) the Japan-Korea front; (b) the India-Pakistan front; and (c) the Southeast Asia front.” 
While the US would ultimately lose the Vietnam War and any chance of using the Vietnamese as a proxy force against Beijing, the long war against Beijing would continue elsewhere. 


More recently, an American policy think tank, the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) in a 2000 paper titled "Rebuilding America's Defenses" (PDF) would unabashedly declare its intentions to establish a wider, permanent military presence in Southeast Asia.

The report would state explicitly that: 

...it is time to increase the presence of American forces in Southeast Asia.
It would elaborate in detail, stating:
In Southeast Asia, American forces are too sparse to adequately address rising security requirements. Since its withdrawal from the Philippines in 1992, the United States has not had a significant permanent military presence in Southeast Asia. Nor can U.S. forces in Northeast Asia easily operate in or rapidly deploy to Southeast Asia – and certainly not without placing their commitments in Korea at risk. Except for routine patrols by naval and Marine forces, the security of this strategically significant and increasingly tumultuous region has suffered from American neglect. 

Noting the difficultly of placing US troops where they are not wanted, the PNAC paper notes: 
This will be a difficult task requiring sensitivity to diverse national sentiments, but it is made all the more compelling by the emergence of new democratic governments in the region. By guaranteeing the security of our current allies and newly democratic nations in East Asia, the United States can help ensure that the rise of China is a peaceful one. Indeed, in time, American and allied power in the region may provide a spur to the process of democratization inside China itself.
It should be noted that the paper's reference to "the emergence of new democratic governments in the region" is a reference to client states created by the United States on behalf of its own interests and in no way constituted actual "democratic governments" which would otherwise infer they represented the interests of the very people possessing the "national sentiments" that opposed US military presence in the region in the first place.


Thursday, September 7, 2017

Cambodian Opposition Leader Bragged About US-backed Sedition

September 7, 2017 (Tony Cartalucci - LD) - Cambodian opposition leader Kem Sokha was recently arrested on charges of treason. While the Western media has attempted to portray the charges as politically motivated, Sokha's treason is not only quite real, he openly, eagerly bragged about it on the Australian-based "Cambodia Broadcasting Network" (CBN).  


The Phnom Penh Post in its article, "Kem Sokha video producer closes Phnom Penh office in fear," would quote Sokha who claimed (emphasis added): 
And, the USA that has assisted me, they asked me to take the model from Yugoslavia, Serbia, where they can changed the dictator Slobodan Milosevic,” he continues, referring to the former Serbian and Yugoslavian leader who resigned amid popular protests following disputed elections, and died while on trial for war crimes.
“You know Milosevic had a huge numbers of tanks. But they changed things by using this strategy, and they take this experience for me to implement in Cambodia. But no one knew about this.”
Sokha is referring to the openly admitted US-engineered regime change mechanism known as "color revolutions" and in particular the successful overthrow of Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic in 2000.


It is also mentioned in the article that Sokha has traveled to the United States every year since 1993 to "learn about the democratization process." A video of Kem Sokha with US Senator Ed Royce in Washington DC openly calling for the deposing of the Cambodian government has also been published by CBN.

US Regime-Change Represents Destabilization and Destruction, Not Democracy 

As admitted by the New York Times in its article, "Who Really Brought Down Milosevic," the United States, not the people of Serbia, overthrew the Serbian government - not in favor of the Serbs' best interests, but for Washington's own self-serving interests.

The New York Times would write:
American assistance to Otpor and the 18 parties that ultimately ousted Milosevic is still a highly sensitive subject. But Paul B. McCarthy, an official with the Washington-based National Endowment for Democracy, is ready to divulge some details...

...McCarthy says, ''from August 1999 the dollars started to flow to Otpor pretty significantly.'' Of the almost $3 million spent by his group in Serbia since September 1998, he says, ''Otpor was certainly the largest recipient.'' The money went into Otpor accounts outside Serbia. At the same time, McCarthy held a series of meetings with the movement's leaders in Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, and in Szeged and Budapest in Hungary. Homen, at 28 one of Otpor's senior members, was one of McCarthy's interlocutors. ''We had a lot of financial help from Western nongovernmental organizations,'' Homen says. ''And also some Western governmental organizations.''
The successful overthrow of the Serbian government by agents working on behalf of Washington served as a template for other, similar operations including the 2011 "Arab Spring" that has left North Africa and much of the Middle East ravaged by war, failed states, and human catastrophe.


In an April 2011 article also published by the New York Times titled, "U.S. Groups Helped Nurture Arab Uprisings," it was stated:
A number of the groups and individuals directly involved in the revolts and reforms sweeping the region, including the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and grass-roots activists like Entsar Qadhi, a youth leader in Yemen, received training and financing from groups like the International Republican Institute, the National Democratic Institute and Freedom House, a nonprofit human rights organization based in Washington.
The article would also add, regarding the US National Endowment for Democracy (NED):
The Republican and Democratic institutes are loosely affiliated with the Republican and Democratic Parties. They were created by Congress and are financed through the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up in 1983 to channel grants for promoting democracy in developing nations. The National Endowment receives about $100 million annually from Congress. Freedom House also gets the bulk of its money from the American government, mainly from the State Department.
Those participating in overthrowing their nation's government with foreign aid are by definition traitors - and with Cambodia's Kem Sokha and his entire Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) implicated in and admitting to an identically foreign-organized conspiracy against their own nation as took place in Serbia and across the Arab World, it seems that charges of treason are more than warranted.

Readers should take note that nations targeted by US-engineered regime change - from Serbia to Ukraine, to Georgia, Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Yemen - all have suffered immeasurably since. For the Cambodian government not to follow through with uprooting Sokha and the US networks built up across Cambodia to support foreign subversion, would be the height of irresponsibility, inviting nothing less than the same sort of destabilization and destruction in Cambodia still unfolding in other nations targeted by US political interference.

Kem Sokha's eagerness to indenture himself - and were he come to power, his entire nation - to US interests is perhaps the greatest indicator that he in no way represents the sort of democratic progress he claims to be bringing to Cambodia. Democracy - a process primarily of self-determination - cannot exist if Cambodia's future is being openly determined in Washington D.C. instead.