[Marxism] Declining US military superiority

John Reimann 1999wildcat at gmail.com
Mon Dec 24 15:10:11 MST 2018


First of all, to reassert: Nothing I write is meant to support US
imperialism in its rivalry with Chinese or Russian imperialism. It's simply
intended to try to get a clear and balanced view.

David Walters cites the lack of Chinese and Russian military bases outside
of their immediate region as evidence that their military is for self
defense purposes only. I don't find that convincing. After all, imperial
Japan and Germany had almost no military bases outside of their region in
the build-up to WW II. That didn't mean they didn't have imperialist goals.

In the case of China, it's more than just goals. I'm guessing David has
also read some of the reports of Chinese capitalist investment in South
America, Central America and Africa as well as elsewhere in Asia. As is
inevitable, these investments are also tied in with interference in the
domestic politics of the countries where the investments lie. This has been
the case in Nicaragua, for example, where China is one of the major backers
if not THE major backer of the proposed new canal. Its role in Brazil also
played a role in the politics there.

There are two separate cases I know of where China loaned to a foreign
country for development of a port and then, when the country was unable to
repay the loan, China took over the port, lock stock and barrel - the
classic "debt trap" that US finance capital has used so often. One of these
countries is Sri Lanka, the other is Djibouti. In the case of Sri Lanka,
from what I've read, the port has very little commercial potential, so what
is the aim of the development of the port? Isn't it likely that it will be
used as a naval base? And we know that China is advancing its naval
development in general.

As far as Russia, I don't think anybody can legitimately argue that its
involvement in Syria is simply for self defense. And I think it's very
unrealistic to think that its involvement will end once the shooting war
ends there. In fact, from what I've read, Russian capitalists are already
looking towards investing there when the "rebuilding" stage opens up in
Syria. This will then be used for further investment throughout the region,
probably including in Israel too.

And one way or another where the money flows, the military also goes.

John Reimann

-- 
*“In politics, abstract terms conceal treachery.” *from "The Black
Jacobins" by C. L. R. James
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