Final in a series by guest author Dr. Tony Marsella
The foreign policies and actions of the U.S. over the past 100 years are rooted in intentions to control and dominate the international order of nations and cultures. These policies and actions have proven destructive to national and global peace, and have served and empowered the interests of a limited number of individuals and groups. While announced as intentions to bring democracy and freedom, they have too often resulted in occupation, oppression, and repression of human rights.
An obvious result — visible in virtually every nation caught in our efforts – is the costly growth of a vast US network of:
- Military bases and operations [more than 900 known foreign bases]
- Massive fortress embassies/consulates
- Encampments/prisons/death squads
- Cultural disintegration and decline.
These networks do not promote cooperation and admiration; rather they encourage instability via reflexive protests, insurrections, rebellions, revolutions, and acts of domestic, state, and international terrorism.
All nations act in their own interests. In a global era, however, selfish national interests result in direct and indirect opposition. Nations in which people feel victimized and humiliated by the U.S. consider revenge as just and appropriate. This creates an endless cycle.
Who benefits from the following examples of U.S. foreign policy and actions?
- Assassinations/death squads/drones,
- Celebration of national “morality”/necessity of torture
- Controlling the UN via vetoes
- Controlling the IMF and World Bank
- Development of domestic crowd controls (militarization of police)
- Disproportionate support of “allies” and enemification of others,
- Glorification of war and militarism
- Mass surveillance, monitoring, and archiving of data,
- Massive government/private intelligence security agencies/organizations
- Media influence and control
- Promotion of nationalism/pseudo-patriotism
- Propaganda and promotion of USA exceptionalism
- Purchase and installation of pro-American leaders and dictators
- Recruitment of spies, informers, collaborators, agents
- Vilification of domestic/international critics
- Weapons/arms dealer/sales
In both of the articles cited below, and in this post, I argue that we are headed for a “dreadful reckoning” (Grieder’s term) if we do not come to an awareness of the many sources and consequences of violence in our lives, particularly the perpetuation of “cultures of violence” that are sources of endless suffering, destruction, and death.
- “The United States of America: A Culture of War” (Marsella, A.J. . International Journal of Intercultural Research, 35, 714-728.
- “Nonkilling psychology and lifeism” (Marsella, A.J. (2011). In J. Pim & D. Christie (Eds.) Nonkilling Psychology (pp. 361-378). Honolulu, Hi: Center for Global Non-Violence.
The answer resides in the necessity of non-violent activism to prevent violence. This is the timeless answer of every great peacemaker.
Anthony J. Marsella, Ph.D., Emeritus Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Hawaii, November 8, 2012