President Franklin Delano Roosevelt is supposed to have said of Rafael Trujillo the odious Dominican dictator: “I know he’s a son of a bitch, but he’s our son of a bitch.”
Many countries have dogs of pure breeds. France has the Poodle, Germany the Rottweiler. Poodles come in three sizes: the smallest is the Toy Poodle, the largest a sheepdog. The Toy Poodle is a lap dog, a favourite of fat-rich ladies. The Rottweiler is a very powerful dog used for cattle herding; in Holland it was used as a drover’s dog to pull carts. It is fearsome and can be unpredictable if badly bred, as it more often than not is in countries where it does not originate because of the limited gene pool. The demand from complexed, chippy men (as in ‘chip on the shoulder’) who are diminutive in all respects (if you get my drift) to create a macho image – they become extensions of their Rottweilers adds to the problem. For the record, a ‘pye’ is a dog with many fathers and is of indeterminate pedigree, a mixture of many breeds.
We are concerned here with are mongrels. A mongrel is a cross between two pure breeds. America crossed the Toy Poodle with the Rottweiler and produced a mongrel of its own. While its kennels are in the nurseries of Third World militaries, the pup often goes for specialist training to America. They considered calling it ‘Poo-Rott’ but thought it might be considered vulgar, what with ‘rot’ attached to ‘poo’. How about ‘Pottweiler’? No, that has ‘pot’ in it, too close to ‘poo’. So they settled on ‘Roodle’. This is not scientific breeding; it’s political breeding.
A Roodle’s special characteristics are that while it is America’s lapdog, it strikes terror in the hearts of its owners and even attacks them when commanded. America plants its Roodles in Third World countries it wishes to control. Roodles are unpopular rulers of whatever hue, ‘elected’ or otherwise. Their consideration is that they can plunder their national wealth (which they usually stash away in US banks) and also their people’s rights. It’s done for ‘control’ in the name of ‘peace and stability’ – the sort you find in a graveyard.
When a Roodle becomes old and ineffective and loses its dentures (it has no real teeth), it is of no use to America. Let old Henry tell you. Remember Kissinger who said: “There is no morality in relations between states, only self interest”? He also stated, remarkably truthfully, that, “To be an enemy of America can be dangerous, but to be a friend is fatal.” When the Roodle, bred to think that America is its friend, becomes too old to deliver, it is discarded (other Roodles please note). Then it is either put down or placed in a pound for abandoned dogs. Too late, understanding finally dawns: it is fatal to be America’s friend. It is a user. It gives ‘aid’ to enslave countries in chains of debt.
New Roodles are always ready and trained to replace the old ones. America peddles ‘democracy’ if it is sure that elections will deliver Roodles while knowing that show-window democracy almost always puts the country into greater retrogression. If elections misfire and Roodles are not elected – like Ahmedinejad and Hamas – it isn’t democracy at all. Then they foist military rule on the country led by Roodles. And if that is also not possible, they conquer and ‘liberate’ – the ‘White Man’s Burden’, what? Afghanistan and Iraq spring to mind.
So before you get excited about ‘revolutions’ led by its middle class youth with demands that mean nothing to the wretchedly poor, pray pause. They may be nothing more than bourgeois uprisings, to use Marxist terminology, unwittingly helping America to replace the old Roodle with the new one. This may have just happened in Egypt –bourgeois uprisings of educated, middle class youth, mostly professionals, joined by the media, labour (sometimes) but never by the lumpen proletariat from urban ghettos or the rural proletariat. The proletariat’s are the real issues: solving them requires upturning the status quo, which would be a real revolution. Come to think of it, the educated middle class has always led revolutions; the imperative is to co-opt the poor. Else they remain uprisings.
This is in no way meant to mock or belittle the protesters in Egypt: bourgeois or not, they are so highly motivated because they are genuine. It was authentic people power. But that does not necessarily mean that the protestors knew whose interests they might unwittingly be serving? How are they to know if they are led by people acting as some power’s pawns, foreign or domestic or both. Usually it is both, because America has also insinuated its lesser Roodles into organizations and institutions that matter – many people from the elite are their informers. Only one Roodle can be champion; that is the one that is placed at the top. The also-rans get into private and public sector institutions. Like America has the best junk food in the world, it also has the best junk rulers – the Roodles.
“The Egyptian people have found their voice after 5,000 years,” say the media-infesting wiseacres. Bullshit. The western media are America’s most potent weapon of mental colonization: while they are ‘free’ at home they slavishly follow their country’s foreign policy, unless it becomes too damaging to their own ‘credibility’, like America’s false war on Iraq. Didn’t they have a voice when Nasser was president? If his successors betrayed his legacy, that doesn’t mean that the Egyptians had lost their voice? For 18 days they said it with slogans, imprisonment and blood.
Egypt is one of the greatest countries of the world, one of the cradles of civilization with a history spanning seven millennia. It is the political and intellectual epicenter of the Arab world. The outcome of this uprising remains uncertain: too early to say whether it will lead only to regime change or a revolution that upturns the repressive and inequitable status quo. Either way, at least some of the Egyptian people will be better off. But even a half-baked Egyptian revolution will engulf the entire region. That’s terrible for America and Israel, to be surrounded by a ring of fire. What then? Another world war?
(The writer is a weekly columnist for a national newspaper & a political commentator).
NOTE:This is a cross post.