By M.K. Styllinski
“Today, the imperialist designs of the United States, Britain, France, and Germany have not changed. What has changed is the pretext and justification for waging their neo-colonial wars of conquest. During the colonial period, the narratives and justifications for waging war were accepted by public opinion in the colonizing countries, such as Britain and France. Today’s “just wars” and “just causes” are now being conducted under the banners of women’s rights, human rights, humanitarianism, and democracy.”
— sociologist and award-winning writer Mahdi Darius Nazemroay, from: Preparing the Chessboard for the “Clash of Civilizations”: Divide, Conquer and Rule the “New Middle East.”
I’ll admit, I was pleasantly shocked when it was announced that Britain would be leaving the European Union.
And no, I’m not a racist, xenophobic, right-wing radical or crusty old misanthrope reliving the good ole’ days of the 1950s. I’m simply seeing the European Union for what it is: a “union” that is not designed to serve the people and never will be in its current form.
In today’s ridiculous climate of leave and remain hysteria encouraged as usual, by our ever-witless media it seems divisions and demarcations along tribal lines are being encouraged. It has given us the chance to see how the rise in nationalism and right wing sentiment is growing and it has also given us the opportunity to see how many who consider themselves left-liberal and “progressive” are reacting to such a growth. Thanks to the toxic influence of Thatcherism and Blairism in the UK we are living with a wholesale embrace of American neo-colonialism, imperialism and neo-liberal economics. This means that the banking sector, the corporation and the state have merged under the EU as never before.
Like many, I’ve seen a shift in the nature of the left and socialism in general and its inability to square the circle regarding this development, displaying both abject ignorance and denial that is extraordinary to behold. As a result and somewhat ironically, British conservatism has taken on the role of actually protecting people’s rights and values – at least for now. Yet, they too have the very real problem of the radical right flowing as an undercurrent within and threatening to wrest control from moderate principles. It still amazes me that those who see themselves fighting for a better world, a more progressive and humanitarian ethos choose to expend their energies in supporting the European Union that was never meant to be anything other than an economic outpost for highly damaging neo-liberal economics and the neo-colonial wars that go with it.
What happened to the traditional anti-war movement of the left?
What has happened to their ability to fight for the underdog?