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自由主義:帝國主義高高掛的羊頭 – P. Iber
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Empires of liberty       

Patrick Iber, Eurozine, 04/25/13

If the idea of freedom means anything, then surely imperialism is one way to negate it. And yet, for the last two hundred years the United Kingdom and the United States, two nations that draw deeply on the liberal tradition in their conception of statehood, were also the most powerful and far-flung empires in the world. A recent calculation has it that the United Kingdom has invaded around ninety percent of the world's countries; the United States, even as of 2013, has military personnel deployed in about three quarters of them.[1] Liberalism is plainly not the only path to empire, but the ideology can lead there, and has.

One does not need to espouse a kind of vulgar Marxism to suspect that one reason that this should be the case is that liberal democracy was, for a time, the modal politics of capitalism. Industrial capitalism developed first in the United Kingdom, where energy and commerce began the process of making the world modern. Capitalism demanded expanding markets for producers and for consumers. Ensuring that such markets exist was, even in liberal society, a question of politics and a matter for the state. And thus, potentially, of empire. Marx himself, never nostalgic for the "rural idiocy" of pre-capitalism, saw imperialism as a part of the path of world development that would make capitalism, and thus socialism, possible.

More conventional liberal imperialists than Marx saw the empire in those terms as well: most British saw their empire not as rapacious or predatory, but, on the contrary, an instrument of prosperity and peace. Multiplying industrial product augured for a prosperous future, and expanding ties of trade were thought to hold civilizing potential and, by creating bonds of mutual dependency, to make conflict less likely. This might have been the case between relatively equal trading partners, but the potential dynamics that would arise when the power of one partner far outstripped the other went unconsidered; this proved especially true since London became, for much of the world, the financial capital. There were places like Argentina that became deeply compromised without ever requiring full incorporation into the empire. Yet around the world, the threat of violence to ensure compliance remained very real; British ships bombed China and took Hong Kong, to give but two examples, and sat threateningly off the shores of others. As Lord Palmerston, then Prime Minister, put it in 1860: "It may be true in one sense that trade ought not to be enforced by cannon balls, but on the other hand trade cannot flourish without security, and that security may often be unattainable without the exhibition of physical force."
[2]

The empire that the United Kingdom acquired in the nineteenth century was ad hoc, but not accidental. What began as an empire of trade gradually became one of territorial possession, as threats from local rebellions, especially in the 1850s and 1860s, and from other rising European powers, especially in the 1880s and 1890s, challenged British control. The empire was diverse: it included local monarchies, protectorates, and a variety of weak and strong relations with the crown. Overlaying it all was the predictable veneer of racism: the more white-skinned the residents of the colony, the quicker the path to self-determination. Lucky enough, at least for the white residents of Australia and Canada; less so for black South Africans, who bore the brunt of the most vicious union of capitalism and imperialism of British imperial history. Freedom for Africans on their own was barbarism, went the imperial reasoning, and so a new kind of barbarism was imposed in its stead.

At the turn of the twentieth century, the process of transferring leadership for liberal empire passed from the United Kingdom to the United States. Each World War made U.S. dominance clearer, but the process began well before that, especially in Latin America. The Monroe Doctrine had long promised that the United States would object to the incursion of European imperialism in the Americas. But westward expansion by the United States at mid-century took half of Mexico's territory, and with it the responsibility of suppressing native American groups who wished to be governed by neither state.
[3] In the 1890s, the U.S. role as regional hegemonic power was recognized by the United Kingdom, when it asked the United States oversee resolution of a boundary conflict between British Guyana and Venezuela. Following the brief war with Spain in 1898, the United States took the Philippines and Puerto Rico, and placed Cuba is in a state of compromised sovereignty.

For the next decades, intervention in the Caribbean Basin was a regular affair. "I was a racketeer for capitalism," said Marine Major General Smedley Butler after his retirement, having overseen many of the occupations. "I spent thirty-three years [...] being a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street, and the bankers."
[4] But acting on behalf of private interests was not dignified work for U.S. forces, and so the ventures were ennobled with liberal ideologies of freedom and democracy. In Nicaragua, where U.S. military presence lasted from 1912 to 1933, forces tried to reduce the power of local caudillos over elections, introduce competitive parties, and create a constabulary force that could ensure that could oversee a more liberal order after they left. When U.S. forces finally did leave, however, that head of well-trained and well-equipped force, none other than Anastasio Somoza, used his training not to enforce democracy but to take power for himself. His brutal rule, eventually passed on to his sons, endured for decades. Imposing Somoza had not been the U.S. plan, but, as with the United Kingdom before it, at most times the United States could live with friendly dictators that didn't challenge its economic and security interests.[5]

U.S. imperialism was, for the most part, not territorial. It achieved what the United Kingdom had tried and failed in the nineteenth century: open markets and compatible regimes without the costs of formal occupation. It justified its actions with a similar combination of assertions about civilizational superiority, self-delusion about being paladin of democracy, and, in an extension of Monroe-Doctrine thinking, fears about the encroachment of foreign empires. With the advent of the Cold War, the U.S. self-conception of itself as a defender of freedom intensified, set against the enemy of foreign totalitarianism represented by the Soviet Union. In Europe, this was not a transparently absurd, and scholars have written much about the United States as an "empire by invitation" there. But threats to liberal order in places dominated by the United States could be brutal. Latin America suffered more than its share; the CIA bungled its way to a successful coup in Guatemala in 1954, contributing to the beginnings of a forty-year civil war. Though a certain amount of economic nationalism could be tolerated when Cold War security interests were at stake, the United States consistently acted to undermine left-wing movements. In the 1960s and 1970s, the bloody war in Vietnam and U.S. support for dictators in Latin America and the rest of the world put the lie to the idea of the United States as a benign empire. As it had with the United Kingdom before it, the threat of violence underlay the liberal order.

In the last few decades, growth in the world economy, much of it led by states pursuing strategies that would have to be described as illiberal and mercantilist, has lessened U.S. dominance, and the economic crisis of recent years made plain the limits of U.S. power around the globe. But if the age of liberal imperialism seems on the wane, a liberal order remains, as do the lessons of the last two centuries: exchange and contract between free nations, as between individuals, works best when power between them is close to equal. Extreme inequalities can make freedom of choice an illusion. How the liberal tradition decides to make sure that power is distributed evenly enough to make its systems work well remains one of the vital projects of the next century for those who believe in the promise of a liberal order without imperialism.

Reference

[1] Stuart Laycock, All the Countries We've Invaded: And the Few We Never Got Round To, The History Press, 2012.

[2] Bernard Porter, The Lion's Share: A Short History of British Imperialism, 1850-2004, Pearson Education, 2004, 10.

[3] Brian Delay, War of a Thousand Deserts, Yale University Press, 2008.

[4] Smedley Butler, "America's Armed Forces," Common Sense IV, no. 11 (November 1935): 8.

[5] Michel Gobat, Confronting the American Dream: Nicaragua under U.S. Imperial Rule, Duke University Press, 2005.

http://www.eurozine.com/articles/2013-04-24-iber-en.html?



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美國CIA所推翻的當代七個政府 - J. D. Stuster
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Mapped: The 7 Governments the U.S. Has Overthrown

 

Yes, we now have confirmation that the CIA was behind Iran's 1953 coup. But the agency hardly stopped there.

 

J. Dana Stuster, 08/19/13

 

The era of CIA-supported coups dawned in dramatic fashion: An American general flies to Iran and meets with "old friends"; days later, the Shah orders Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh to step down. When the Iranian military hesitates, millions of dollars are funneled into Tehran to buy off Mossadegh's supporters and finance street protests. The military, recognizing that the balance of power has shifted, seizes the prime minister, who will live the rest of his life under house arrest. It was, as one CIA history puts it, "an American operation from beginning to end," and one of many U.S.-backed coups to take place around the world during the second half of the 20th century.

 

Several national leaders, both dictators and democratically elected figures, were caught in the middle of the U.S.-Soviet Cold War -- a position that ultimately cost them their office (and, for some, their life) as the CIA tried to install "their man" as head of state. The U.S. government has since publicly acknowledged some of these covert actions; in fact, the CIA's role in the 1953 coup was just declassified this week. In other cases, the CIA's involvement is still only suspected.

 

The legacy of covert U.S. involvement in the seven successful coups below (not to mention a number of U.S. military interventions against hostile regimes and U.S.-supported insurgencies and failed assassination attempts, including a plan to kill Fidel Castro with an exploding cigar), has made the secret hand of the United States a convenient bogeyman in today's political tensions. Even now, despite waning U.S. influence in Cairo, conspiracy theories suggesting that both the Muslim Brotherhood and the military-backed government are in cahoots with the United States abound in Egypt.

 

Here's a brief history of the confirmed cases of the CIA's globe-spanning campaign of coups.

 

Iran, 1953: Despite continued speculation about the CIA's role in a 1949 coup to install a military government in Syria, the ouster of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh is the earliest coup of the Cold War that the U.S. government has acknowledged. In 1953, after nearly two years of Mossadegh's premiership, during which time he challenged the authority of the Shah and nationalized an Iranian oil industry previously operated by British companies, he was forced from office and arrested, spending the rest of his life under house arrest. According to the just-declassified CIA-authored history of the operation, "It was the potential ... to leave Iran open to Soviet aggression -- at a time when the Cold War was at its height and when the United Sates was involved in an undeclared war in Korea against forces supported by the U.S.S.R. and China -- that compelled the United States [REDACTED] in planning and executing TPAJAX [the code name of the coup operation]."

 

Guatemala, 1954: Though the United States was initially supportive of Guatemalan President Jacobo Árbenz -- the State Department felt his rise through the U.S.-trained and armed military would be an asset -- the relationship soured as Árbenz attempted a series of land reforms that threatened the holdings of the U.S.-owned United Fruit Company. A coup in 1954 forced Árbenz from power, allowing a succession of juntas in his place. Classified details of the CIA's involvement in the ouster of the Guatemalan leader, which included equipping rebels and paramilitary troops while the U.S. Navy blockaded the Guatemalan coast, came to light in 1999.

 

Congo, 1960: Patrice Lumumba, the first prime minister of the Congo (later the Democratic Republic of the Congo), was pushed out of office by Congolese President Joseph Kasavubu amid the U.S.-supported Belgian military intervention in the country, a violent effort to maintain Belgian business interests after the country's decolonization. But Lumumba maintained an armed opposition to the Belgian military and, after approaching the Soviet Union for supplies, was targeted by the CIA once the agency determined he was a threat to the newly installed government of Joseph Mobutu. The Church Committee, an 11-senator commission established in 1975 to provide oversight of the clandestine actions of the U.S. intelligence community, found that the CIA "continued to maintain close contact with Congolese who expressed a desire to assassinate Lumumba," and that "CIA officers encouraged and offered to aid these Congolese in their efforts against Lumumba." After an aborted assassination attempt against Lumumba involving a poisoned handkerchief, the CIA alerted Congolese troops to Lumumba's location and noted roads to be blocked and potential escape routes. Lumumba was captured in late 1960 and killed in January of the following year.

 

Dominican Republic, 1961: The brutal dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo, which included the ethnic cleansing of thousands of Haitians in the Dominican Republic and the attempted assassination of the president of Venezuela, ended when he was ambushed and killed by armed political dissidents. Though the gunman who shot Trujillo maintained that "Nobody told me to go and kill Trujillo," he did in fact have the support of the CIA. The Church Committee found that "Material support, consisting of three pistols and three carbines, was supplied to various dissidents.... United States' officials knew that the dissidents intended to overthrow Trujillo, probably by assassination..."

 

South Vietnam, 1963: The United States was already deeply involved in South Vietnam in 1963, and its relationship with the country's leader, Ngo Dinh Diem, was growing increasingly strained amid Diem's crackdown on Buddhist dissidents. According to the Pentagon Papers, on Aug. 23, 1963, South Vietnamese generals plotting a coup contacted U.S. officials about their plan. After some fits and starts plus a period of U.S. indecision, the generals seized and killed Diem on Nov. 1, 1963 with U.S. support, which by some accounts partially came in the form of $40,000 in CIA funds.

 

"For the military coup d'etat against Ngo Dinh Diem, the U.S. must accept its full share of responsibility," the Pentagon Papers state. "Beginning in August of 1963 we variously authorized, sanctioned and encouraged the coup efforts of the Vietnamese generals and offered full support for a successor government.... We maintained clandestine contact with them throughout the planning and execution of the coup and sought to review their operational plans and proposed new government."

 

Brazil, 1964: Fearing that the government of Brazilian President Joao Goulart would, in the words of U.S. Ambassador Lincoln Gordon, "make Brazil the China of the 1960s," the United States backed a 1964 coup led by Humberto Castello Branco, then chief of staff of the Brazilian army. In the days leading up to the coup, the CIA encouraged street rallies against the government and provided fuel and "arms of non-US origin" to those backing the military. "I think we ought to take every step that we can, be prepared to do everything that we need to do," President Lyndon Johnson told his advisors planning the coup, according to declassified government records obtained by the National Security Archive. The Brazilian military went on to govern the country until 1985.

 

Chile, 1973: The United States never wanted Salvador Allende, the socialist candidate elected president of Chile in 1970, to assume office. President Richard Nixon told the CIA to "make the [Chilean] economy scream," and the agency worked with three Chilean groups, each plotting a coup against Allende in 1970. The agency went so far as to provide weapons, but the plans fell apart after the CIA lost confidence in its proxies. U.S. attempts to disrupt the Chilean economy continued until Gen. Augusto Pinochet led a military coup against Allende in 1973. The CIA's official account of the seizure of power on Sept. 11, 1973, notes that the agency "was aware of coup-plotting by the military, had ongoing intelligence collection relationships with some plotters, and -- because CIA did not discourage the takeover and had sought to instigate a coup in 1970 -- probably appeared to condone it." The CIA also conducted a propaganda campaign in support of Pinochet's new regime after he took office in 1973, despite knowledge of severe human rights abuses, including the murder of political dissidents.

 

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/08/19/map_7_confirmed_cia_backed_coups



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自由派帝國主義者的10大症狀 – S. M. Walt
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Top 10 warning signs of 'liberal imperialism'

 

Stephen M. Walt, 05/20/13

 

Are you a liberal imperialist? Liberal imperialists are like kinder, gentler neoconservatives: Like neocons, they believe it's America's responsibility to right political and humanitarian wrongs around the world, and they're comfortable with the idea of the United States deciding who will run countries such as Libya, Syria, or Afghanistan. Unlike neocons, liberal imperialists embrace and support international institutions (like the United Nations), and they are driven more by concern for human rights than they are by blind nationalism or protecting the U.S.-Israel special relationship. Still, like the neocons, liberal imperialists are eager proponents for using American hard power, even in situations where it might easily do more harm than good. The odd-bedfellow combination of their idealism with neocons' ideology has given us a lot of bad foreign policy over the past decade, especially the decisions to intervene militarily in Iraq or nation-build in Afghanistan, and today's drumbeat to do the same in Syria.

 

It's not that the United States should never intervene in other countries or that its military should not undertake humanitarian missions (as it did in Indonesia following the Asian tsunami and in Haiti after a damaging earthquake). It should do so, however, only when there are vital national interests at stake or when sending U.S. troops or American arms is overwhelmingly likely to make things better. In short, decisions to intervene need to clear a very high bar and survive hardheaded questioning about what the use of force will actually accomplish.

 

So while I often sympathize with their intentions, I'm tempted to send all liberal imperialists a sampler cross-stitched with: "The road to hell is paved with good intentions." At a minimum, that warning might help them be just a bit more skeptical about the wisdom of their advice. But I'm lousy at needlepoint, so instead today I offer my "10 Warning Signs that You Are a Liberal Imperialist."

 

#1: You frequently find yourself advocating that the United States send troops, drones, weapons, Special Forces, or combat air patrols to some country that you have never visited, whose language(s) you don't speak, and that you never paid much attention to until bad things started happening there.

 

#2: You tend to argue that the United States is morally obligated to "do something" rather than just stay out of nasty internecine quarrels in faraway lands. In the global classroom that is our digitized current world, you believe that being a bystander -- even thousands of miles away -- is as bad as being the bully. So you hardly ever find yourself saying that "we should sit this one out."

 

#3: You think globally and speak, um, globally. You are quick to condemn human rights violations by other governments, but American abuses (e.g., torture, rendition, targeted assassinations, Guantánamo, etc.) and those of America's allies get a pass. You worry privately (and correctly) that aiming your critique homeward might get in the way of a future job.

 

#4: You are a strong proponent of international law, except when it gets in the way of Doing the Right Thing. Then you emphasize its limitations and explain why the United States doesn't need to be bound by it in this case.

 

#5: You belong to the respectful chorus of those who publicly praise the service of anyone in the U.S. military, but you would probably discourage your own progeny from pursuing a military career.

 

#6. Even if you don't know very much about military history, logistics, or modern military operations, you are still convinced that military power can achieve complex political objectives at relatively low cost.

 

#7: To your credit, you have powerful sympathies for anyone opposing a tyrant. Unfortunately, you tend not to ask whether rebels, exiles, and other anti-regime forces are trying to enlist your support by telling you what they think you want to hear. (Two words: Ahmed Chalabi.)

 

#8. You are convinced that the desire for freedom is hard-wired into human DNA and that Western-style liberal democracy is the only legitimate form of government. Accordingly, you believe that democracy can triumph anywhere -- even in deeply divided societies that have never been democratic before -- if outsiders provide enough help.

 

#9. You respect the arguments of those who are skeptical about intervening, but you secretly believe that they don't really care about saving human lives.

 

#10. You believe that if the United States does not try to stop a humanitarian outrage, its credibility as an ally will collapse and its moral authority as a defender of human rights will be tarnished, even if there are no vital strategic interests at stake.

 

If you are exhibiting some or all of these warning signs, you have two choices.

 

Option #1: You can stick to your guns (literally) and proudly own up to your interventionist proclivities.

Option #2: You can admit that you've been swept along by the interventionist tide and seek help.

 

If you choose the latter course, I recommend that you start by reading Alexander Downes and Jonathan Monten's "Forced to Be Free?: Why Foreign-Imposed Regime Change Rarely Leads to Democratization" (International Security, 2013), along with Rajiv Chandrasekaran's Little America: The War Within the War for Afghanistan and Peter Van Buren's We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People.

 

And if that doesn't work, maybe we need some sort of 12-step program…

 

http://walt.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2013/05/20/top_ten_warning_signs_of_liberal_imperialism

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自由主義和羊頭
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我們可以參照開欄文和《季辛吉現實主義代表的道德》(Merry, R. W., The Morality of Kissinger's Realism)*來了解國際政治的實務與為這些巧取豪奪行為的擦脂抹粉。

Iber的文章還原了「自由主義」的本來面目及其在「宰制論述」上的應用。

以西方的文化或官方宣傳代表「文明」或「普世價值」者,其無知處在此。

* 《季辛吉現實主義代表的道德》,Merry, R. W. 2013, The Morality of Kissinger's Realism

https://city.udn.com/2976/4945371?tpno=0&cate_no=0



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