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View Diary: no blood for oil (20 comments)

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  •  Clay, I'm grateful (0+ / 0-)

    that you do all these mostly very detailed diaries on the conflict in Syria.  No one else is putting in as much effort.

    If we're going to get into the ideology of these conflicts, one has to be somewhat systematic.  Basically there are two axes, Left-Right and liberal-conservative, forming the four combinations of these things.  Plus a kind of center of the 2x2 box, centrists.

    The centrists are the force behind what is generally called "humanitarian intervention", which is well meaning but politically without macroscopic objectives.  

    Right-conservatives aka reactionaries are usually antiinterventionist to the point of isolationism.  This is an irresponsible position as demonstrated by WW2; it is the usual conservative thing of being emotionally serious and cognitively unserious.

    Right-liberals aka classical Rightists are out to dominate people they don't like.  So they are essentially arbitrary, but they will do imperial or colonial interventions if given an opponent and the chance.  This is what Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld and the Perle/Wolfowitz/etc do.  We got the occupation of Iraq from them.  But these same people were willing to let Milosevic and Serbians have their way with Bosniaks and Kosovars.  The Right-liberals can be historically right by accident but the motivation will always be inpalatable and so will be what they try to do with any conquests.

    Left-liberals aka liberals do so-called liberal interventionism.  This means to back efforts to establish liberal democracy by the means compatible with the end.  Where this can be done nonviolently or without outside force via political or financial pressures this is great to be preferred.  (E.g. the democratizations of South Africa, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, probably Egypt and Burma most recently.)  Where liberal democrats are being suppressed with violence but have the broad public backing to succeed, liberal interventionism means to give them the military assistance that is situationally appropriate and compatible with liberal democratic values.  Deciding when to escalate from nonviolent means to providing arms to sending in the cruise missiles and laser-guided munition dropping bombers, is a very hesitant- but outcome deciding- process and one where non-Left-liberals try to wedge in.

    Left-conservatives aka classical Leftists are, like their enemies the Right-liberals, principally concerned with power.  In the current worldwide dynamic of incremental overthrow of pre-Modern orders by Modern forces, being Left-conservative means siding with pre-Modern Old Left-identified movements and governments.  This does curiously mean siding with empires on the defensive like Russia and China and their in truth Right-conservative ruling elites.

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