Defeat, Demoralization, and Dissent: the Crisis of US Imperialism
August 24, 2021 at 3:58 PM - Views: 15 #441980Ohio BarbarianModerator
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This is a long article from Socialist Revolution, and it’s a firmly Marxist analysis, so I’m posting this in the reading room for those who are interested.
The withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan has officially brought the two-decades-long deployment in the region to an end. The decision to pull out of this disastrous conflict has widespread support among the US public, with 58 percent in favor, according to a YouGov/Economist poll, demonstrating a deep war-weariness among Americans. Today, only a minority of Americans (39 percent) think that the “War on Terror” was worth it. These figures are all the more astonishing when compared to the 88 percent support that the invasion enjoyed at its launch in 2001.
This war-weariness is also extending to the rank-and-file of the US Army. An increasing number of US soldiers are questioning the purpose of risking their lives on military adventures that achieve nothing. Returning home, they are left with a legacy of physical and mental trauma. The same governments that could find the material means to send them off to fight in distant lands are apparently unable to find the resources to support veterans struggling with mental health problems, unemployment, and homelessness.
An increasing number of ordinary Americans are rejecting US involvement in costly, futile conflicts abroad, particularly when there is rampant poverty and inequality at home. The American ruling class, across partisan lines, is having to swallow the fact that the relative decline of its power coupled with growing discontent at home means that it can no longer play the role that it used to.
But the withdrawal from Afghanistan has become only the latest humiliating debacle to underline that US imperialism has reached a limit. Back in 2008, faced with a show of force by a resurgent Russia asserting itself in a conflict with Georgia over South Ossetia, the US could do little other than fulminate on the sidelines. And when in 2014 Crimea was joined with Russia following a referendum, the US ruling class could do little other than stamp up and down and express its anger in words.
It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.--Eugene Debs
You can jail a revolutionary, but you can't jail the revolution.--Fred Hampton
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