Sunday, April 23, 2017

Tagged under: , , , , , ,

The Ex-IRA men: ‘United Ireland? It’s All Guff’

Simon Carswell writes in the Irish Times 0n 8 April 2017 that:

A group of paramilitary veterans say Brexit won’t derail the peace process, violence won’t return, and they’ll never see a united Ireland


'United Ireland? It’s all guff': Colm Lynagh, Anthony McIntyre, Gerry McGeough and Tommy McKearney Colm Lynagh, Anthony McIntyre, Gerry McGeough and Tommy McKearney


Brexit will not lead to a return to bloodshed in Northern Ireland, says one Provisional IRA veteran. Talk of a united Ireland is all guff, according to another. A third former republican paramilitary suggests that Ireland would be better off in an economic bloc with the UK rather than with the European Union.

These are among the surprising views expressed by a number of former hard men of republicanism, interviewed by The Irish Times for their unique insights into the thorny issues of Brexit and Northern Ireland’s future.

Three of the four are convicted killers or have served time in relation to a killing. The fourth was imprisoned for offences that included attempted murder. They were active in some of the bloodiest campaigns of the Troubles, and for three of them much of that activity took place along the Border.

Since June 2016, when the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, there has been much speculation about the risk to the Northern peace process. The fear that a hard Border along the UK’s only land frontier with the EU could stir tensions in Northern Ireland has focused minds not only in Belfast, Derry and Dublin but also in London and Brussels.

In initial papers filed last week both the British prime minister, Theresa May, and the president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, referred to their desire to protect the peace process. May has said that the British do not want a return to the Border of old. Tusk has said that the EU will seek “flexible and creative solutions” to avoid a hard Border.

But these four veterans of the Provisional IRA’s armed campaign, who are all now critics of Sinn Féin policy, do not think that Brexit will derail the peace process. They see that threat as little more than a scare tactic to force the future of the 499km Border to the centre of the two-year Brexit negotiations.

Partition is going to become more obvious

“I think a lot of the concerns are exaggerated,” says Tommy McKearney, an IRA volunteer originally from Moy, in Co Tyrone, who was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing a part-time Ulster Defence Regiment soldier in 1976.

Certainly, I think we can rule out the idea of a hard Border with British troops on the Border. That was not to do with economics. That was a security situation. I don’t think we are going to see that again.

McKearney, one of the 1980 IRA hunger strikers who went without food for 53 days, sits in his Co Monaghan kitchen next to Colm Lynagh, sipping coffee and eating biscuits, reflecting on the unknown period with Brexit ahead.

Lynagh, a fellow republican, served eight years, from 1982 to 1990, in Portlaoise Prison over a charge related to the killing of a nightclub bouncer in Monaghan in 1981.

Former republican prisoner Colm Lynagh (left) and former Provisional IRA hunger striker Tommy McKearney in Monaghan Town. Photograph: Simon Carswell/The Irish Times

The two men have a long personal history linked to a time and territory around the Border that witnessed some of the region’s bloodiest episodes. Their brothers, Pádraig McKearney and Jim Lynagh, were among eight members of the IRA’s east Tyrone brigade killed by the SAS during an attack on an RUC station in the Protestant village of Loughgall, in Co Tyrone, in May 1987. It was the biggest single loss of life for the republican movement during the conflict.

Two more McKearney brothers died in the Troubles. Tommy’s older brother Sean was killed in May 1974 when a bomb he was planting at a petrol station outside Dungannon exploded prematurely. Another brother, Kevin, and Tommy’s uncle John, neither of whom was in the IRA, were killed by loyalist paramilitaries from the Ulster Volunteer Force in an attack on the family’s butcher’s shop, in Moy, in January 1992.

There is very, very little appetite among republican circles in the North for a resumption of any armed campaign. Why would article 50 change that?

While Brexit raises uncertainty around how the UK manages trade across a frontier running through those former battlefields, McKearney and Lynagh believe that the climate and conditions – the anti-Catholic discrimination and economic inequality – that ignited the Troubles no longer exist.

Even a few customs posts stopping HGVs crossing the Border would not change that, McKearney says. He considers threats of a return of the British army to Border towns like Aughnacloy as a “cheap shot” and the recent “pantomime” of mock Border checkpoints and anti-Brexit protesters dressing up in customs-officer uniforms as “the hysterical interpretation of what may happen”.

“There is very, very little appetite among republican circles in the North for a resumption of any armed campaign. Why would article 50 change that?” says McKearney.

The reality of it is that after 25 years of armed conflict there is less possibility of an armed campaign of any significance. There will always be a handful of people, but there is nothing can be done about that in any society. But as a community willing to return to armed conflict, there just isn’t an appetite for that.

Lynagh adds:

There is a vested interest in hyping up the political impact and the scare tactics that it is going to open a hornet’s nest of dissident activity against British rule. I don’t see that.

It is going to be very embarrassing for a lot of Irish political parties that almost pretended that partition was going. But the reality is that it is going to be more and more obvious

McKearney and Lynagh are dissenters, not dissidents; although they support the peace process they object to the policies pursued by Sinn Féin and some of their former comrades who moved into politics.

Lynagh is irked by the way political parties in the Brexit debate are portraying people in the Border counties as lawless Irish, similar to the people of Pakistan’s tribal areas, with a pathological predisposition to violence who “will rush out and go to war again because they can’t stand the sight of customs posts”.


‘The EU is as imperial as Britain’

He believes that Brexit will instead encourage various shades of dissenting republicans to engage politically and that there is a chance of a postsectarian debate among unionists, republicans and nationalists, north and south, about what is in the best economic and sovereign interests for both parts of the island.

“This is the only concern for this area: how can we pacify them and stop them engaging in any violent activity? [It’s] not about what are their economic interests. It is hugely insulting,” Lynagh says as he picks nicotine gum from a wrapper.

Neither republican sees a great prospect of a united Ireland after Brexit.

“It is going to be very embarrassing for a lot of Irish political parties that almost pretended that partition was going. But the reality is that it is going to be more and more obvious,” Lynagh says. “The embarrassment is that a customs man might arrive and show that there is a Border.”

Both share left-wing views and believe that the interests of Border counties are not being well served by the European Union. McKearney argues that cross-Border economics has operated in a beggar-thy-neighbour way: Newry has over the years benefited at the expense of Dundalk, and vice versa, depending on currency fluctuations.

“This is not a land of milk and honey under the European Union. We have been neglected,” McKearney says, citing patchy broadband in parts of Co Monaghan as an example.

Lynagh refers to the high proportion of social-welfare recipients in Monaghan, the county’s “low-wage and no-wage economy” and his work distributing charity food to families. He goes so far as to propose an Irish exit from the EU, given the way that Brussels and the European Central Bank, in Frankfurt, landed Irish people with austerity and a hefty bill from the bank bailouts.

He recalls the “EEC No” signs that accompanied “Brits Out” graffiti around Monaghan when he was growing, up in the 1970s. Euroscepticism had a long history in the area, he says, before Ireland went into the EU.

The lifelong Irish republican even suggests that it could as easily be argued that breaking from the European Union and joining forces with the UK would make better economic sense for the country.

“The European Union is as much of an imperial power as – if not more than – Britain at the moment,” Lynagh says. “We are faced with the possibility of two foreign powers implementing the partition of Ireland, and where is the demand in Ireland to say, ‘What gives you the power to do this?’”

McKearney adds:

It is economic imperialism we are dealing with, as opposed to the imperialism that was so raw and so in our face under British imperialism. This is the infrastructure that the European Union has created, and concentrating on a customs post in Aughnacloy is taking us off the core argument.


The Troubles were ‘ostensibly a failure’

Not far from that Border town is the home of Gerry McGeough, a former IRA man who calls himself a traditional republican rather than a dissident. He voted for Brexit in the hope that it would lead to a united Ireland through the disintegration of the UK.

“It was never going to be delivered by the normal means, by the Irish themselves, but it could come about through the break-up of the so-called United Kingdom,” he says as he sits in an armchair in his living room, in front of shelves of history books that reflect his past studies at Trinity College Dublin and his background in teaching.

Next to the living-room window, with its panoramic views of the farmland and gorse-filled hedgerows of this part of the Border, is an imposing portrait that shows the tradition of agrarian agitation McGeough hails from. It is of his great-grandfather Henry McGeough, a member of the Ribbonmen, the 19th-century society of often violent Catholic rebels.

Former Provisional IRA volunteer Gerry McGeough on his farm near Dungannon, Co Tyrone. Photograph: Simon Carswell/The Irish Times 
Gerry McGeough, who is now a farmer, served time in German, US and Northern Irish prisons for paramilitary-related offences, including trying to buy Stinger surface-to-air missiles in 1983 with the aim of taking down British army helicopters. He was arrested in 1988 for crossing the Dutch-German border with AK-47 rifles in the boot of his car and charged with attacks on British soldiers based in Germany.

After breaking from Sinn Féin he stood as an independent republican in the 2007 elections to the Northern Ireland Assembly. He was arrested on the night of the count by the PSNI for the attempted murder of a part-time UDR soldier in 1981. He was sentenced to 20 years in 2011 but was released after two years, under the Belfast Agreement.

McGeough is a supporter of the peace process and now president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Co Tyrone. He does not see republican militarism rising up again over a post-Brexit hardening of the Border or a customs presence on country Border roads, although he does believe that it would hit “an atavistic nerve” among people who have grown accustomed to freedom of movement across the Border. "I know from the old days there were very few people willing to do the business of fighting. I don’t see it has changed any bit since then,” he says. “I don’t see any bloodshed coming from our side. There may be little bits here and there, or attempts here and there, but nothing significant."

He has vivid childhood memories of seeing the Moy Bridge and the road to his grandmother’s home in Monaghan lying in the Blackwater River after being blown up the night before by B Specials – members of the Ulster Special Constabulary quasi-military reserve.

The air of foreboding he once sensed when crossing the river into the North doesn’t exist today because the Border is imperceptible, he says. He thinks it would be silly of the British to build a hard Border again and potentially stir up those tensions. “We are an unruly people, and if there is an opportunity to be unruly again we will take it, but it will not be violence,” he says.

The British are sending a plausibly deniable mixed message. They are saying to us: if you want to go down that road we are not going to step in your way. They don’t throw away remarks like that

McGeough sees the Troubles as “ostensibly a failure”, but the UK government does not want a return to those days “any more than anybody on our side” does. He believes that the British had intended to withdraw from Ireland around the late 2030s, by when demographic trends would have led to an overwhelming nationalist majority.

Brexit may prove a catalyst for a much earlier withdrawal, he says, as he knows Protestants who are “soft Irish nationalists” and farmers who do not want to lose EU subsidies.

The genie is out of the bottle, so you are not going to put it back in again, and at this point in time we are in the uneasy calm before the potential storm. I don’t mean that in terms of violence. I just mean in terms of chaos and upheaval – political, economic and otherwise.


The Tyrone republican believes that Sinn Féin is wrong to propose a special status for Northern Ireland within the European Union. “They should be pushing instead for a united Ireland, that the day the UK leaves Europe is the same day they leave Ireland,” he says.

McGeough points to the “huge statement” last week by David Davis, the UK’s Brexit secretary – formally, secretary of state for exiting the European Union – who said that Northern Ireland would not have to reapply for EU membership as a new state if it voted for reunification with the Republic.

The British are sending a plausibly deniable mixed message,” he says. “They are saying to us: if you want to go down that road we are not going to step in your way. They don’t throw away remarks like that.


United Ireland? ‘It’s all guff’

Anthony McIntyre, an IRA man turned writer and historian who is another supporter of the peace process but critic of Sinn Féin, fails to see how a hard Brexit would fuel any new armed campaign, given that it was not the Border that brought the Provisional IRA into existence but the response in Belfast and Derry to the British army’s behaviour when it came to the North.

“You might have someone taking a potshot sometime, but if you are talking about a serious insurgency or a serious campaign, anything that remotely emulates the Provisional IRA’s campaign, it is not going to happen. What would it achieve?” McIntyre says in his home, on an estate in Drogheda, Co Louth.


Anthony McIntyre, an IRA man turned writer and historian
.
Somebody who might find it difficult to smuggle because of a Border post might go out and shoot a Border-post official? But somebody not being able to smuggle is not what revolutions are made out of. Nobody cares.


The former IRA volunteer served 18 years in the Maze prison for the murder of a UVF man in Belfast in February 1976. Now he has a doctorate in political science and writes a lively blog, The Pensive Quill, firing off opinions on the peace process, among other topics, and offering a platform to others.

Dissidents who backed Brexit with the objective of destabilising the UK are not going to wage an armed campaign, he says. Although logically it makes more sense for Sinn Féin to start an armed campaign, “that is not going to happen – no chance,” he says.

Where’s the insurrectionary energy going to come from? The cops and the security services have been so on top of the armed republican groups that have been operating in the wake of the Provisional IRA. What have they achieved? Maybe a lot of huff and puff – but nothing is going to get blown down.

McIntyre sees the argument that unionists would be better off economically in a united Ireland within the EU than they would in a post-Brexit UK as a “crass case of economic reductionism”. He pours cold water on the possibility of a nationalist majority in the North voting for Irish reunification in light of the unionists losing their majority for the first time in last month’s Assembly elections.

Unionist opposition to a united Ireland is, as he sees it, considerably stronger than nationalist opposition to staying within the UK if treated equally. "Anybody who has ever fought in the Provisional IRA, as distinct to those who hid in the Provisional IRA, or joined after the ceasefires, will never live to see a united Ireland,” he says. “I think it’s all guff.”

As for the warnings made by diplomats, bureaucrats and Eurocrats about the threats to the peace process from Brexit, McIntyre says it is similar to Sinn Féin’s use of the peace process to expand its political influence, where “the process must always undermine the peace”.

“The peace process is dead if you can’t throw up the old monster of potential violence,” he says. “The peace process always has to be broken down, has to be in a state of crisis for it to be protected.”

71 comments :

Steve R said...

"While Brexit raises uncertainty around how the UK manages trade across a frontier running through those former battlefields, McKearney and Lynagh believe that the climate and conditions – the anti-Catholic discrimination and economic inequality – that ignited the Troubles no longer exist."

This is a key point. When I started out in the workforce at age 16 I went to work in an a 100% Protestant firm. Within 10 years at least 1/3rd were Catholic and it was well on the way to 50% a few years after. It is at present 50/50. There was no sectarian crap and everyone mixed together, even after work. It makes you wonder how all the sh*te started and went on! I'm sure this was not an isolated case either. Fast forward many moons and I was in the Ulster Hall having a pint at a European Beer Fest when one of my friends casually mentions he's a Shinner. Apart from taking the absolute p*ss out of him we didn't even give it too much thought. Weird little place Belfast is.

AM,

You always look like a peed off headmaster in the photos, how about cracking a smile every now and again? lol

kevonz1 said...

“It was never going to be delivered by the normal means, by the Irish themselves, but it could come about through the break-up of the so-called United Kingdom,” I like Gerry's thinking. I too don't think it will happen before the imminent collapse of industrial civilisation due to runaway global warming but we need to be ready to act and exploit the empires weakness as it tears itself and the E.U. apart.

AM said...

It's me trying to look serious Steve!

Global Warming is such a serious issue that our own obsessions with the dreary steeples must strike others as a vanity project

DaithiD said...

The thing about human olfactory senses, they only detect changes in smell. 20 years of guff in the north mean in now imperceptible to the general population.

James Quigley said...

Good article well written and to me highly interesting.

It is not often enough that we have such a subject on MSM. You better watch out, next thing you know you'll be snapped up and whisked off to Hollywood. Now the title would be interesting, wouldn't it?

But I suppose it wouldn't compete with sexy EU, Brexit, Marine Le Pen, evil Korea, May's legs, Trump's hair etc etc.

It's all smoke and mirrors to win the limited time span attention of the populace and deflect them from their little squabbles.

Meanwhile back to where it should be at, where we might have some control and knowledge that helps to pick at the dreary steeples and maybe unbung guffed up senses.

Owen Sullivan said...

FEINIAN FANTASY!

“McGeough points to the ‘huge statement’ last week by David Davis, the UK’s Brexit secretary – formally, secretary of state for exiting the European Union – who said that Northern Ireland would not have to reapply for EU membership as a new state if it voted for reunification with the Republic.

Hope springs eternal, but let’s read some of the fine print from that news article:

“According to The Times in a leaked letter to an SDLP MP, David Davis, the Brexit Secretary, wrote: ‘If a majority of the people of Northern Ireland were ever to vote to become part of a united Ireland the UK Government will honour its commitment to enable that to happen.’ He added: ‘In that event, Northern Ireland would be in a position of becoming part of an existing EU member state, rather than seeking to join the EU as a new independent state. If polls show support for a reunification referendum then the Good Friday Agreement stipulates the UK Government is legally obliged to offer one.’”

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-northern-ireland-can-rejoin-eu-reunification-david-davis-stormont-a7653346.html

The key word at play here is “If”. As in if an artificial majority of those imperially gerrymandered for the purpose of preventing a local democratic outcome were to ever vote to shed their externally sponsored protection racket then bob’s your uncle.

But since there is no historical record of this ever happening anywhere similarly situated (see South Vietnam, South Korea, East Germany, Northern Cyprus, etc) then it’s not likely to happen in Northern Ireland either. Because invading blood suckers always stay until they are either violently plucked off or there is no more blood for them to suck.

What locals vote for or want is always at best a tertiary consideration in the usual geopolitical scheme of things. That is to the extent the wants and desires of local native majorities are congruent with what external elites want and desire then bob’s your uncle for sure. And think of the optics for the big bad Brit parasite getting to look like they actually respect their occupied Irish host. That’s why I think the next few lines in that article are slightly more hopeful:

“But he said there was no appetite for another round of devolved assembly elections, adding there was still a narrow wind of ‘a short few weeks’ in which a government could be formed. In the meantime, the province’s civil servants are preparing to take over the budget and allocation of resources to public services. ‘We are rapidly approaching the point at which Northern Ireland will not have an agreed budget,’ he added. ‘This is not sustainable’.”

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-northern-ireland-can-rejoin-eu-reunification-david-davis-stormont-a7653346.html


Translation: “Ain’t no blood in this vein!”

Well, we can always dream, the GFA even says so, for what that’s worth.

AM said...

Owen,

I don't believe things are just that simple.

That logic applied years ago when there was a clear unionist majority. That is no longer the case. I think those who favour a border poll within the North have more in their favour than they had, say, in 1973, the last time there was one.

I think two things need to happen if a border poll was to favour British withdrawal. I differ from yourself in that I don't believe the crucial realignment must take place within unionism, but within nationalism. Many northern nationalists have been willing to live within a UK regime if they think they are being treated fairly. Northern nationalism has not been monolithic on the question of partition to the extent that unionism has.

The first realignment has to be in getting virtually all the nationalists to vote yes to Irexit from the UK.

The second realignment is in getting a sufficient number of unionists to vote for Irexit so that the tipping point is reached.

My own view that the greater challenge lies in the first, rather than the second. It is hoped that the nationalists will vote as one. But there is little evidence to back that hope. Will Brexit cause that dual realignment? It would need to be particularly harsh across the board for that to happen.

Owen Sullivan said...

Anthony,

I don’t believe foreign occupation and rule is just that complicated.

It’s political science, not rocket science.

Even if virtually all Irish Nationalists vote yes to Irexit from the UK…

That will only trigger Irexit if that is what the UK (England) wants too.

And yes that is what the UK (England) presently says for public consumption.

But surely we have all learned not to be swayed by what they say...

But by what they do & don’t do.

And what they don’t do and haven’t done at all is leave.

Recall the last time in 1919 when virtually all Irish Nationalists voted yes to Irexit…

It didn’t make a damn bit of difference because that’s not what the UK (English elite) wanted.

So this present focus, on “crucial realignments” among the native colonials is misplaced.

See the US in Vietnam and Korea where local native opinion just doesn’t really matter either.

So our focus instead should be on English elite commercial and geopolitical interests in Ireland. You know: R = PB - C.

They need to be assured that Ireland is not Cuba or Communist and will not cost them.

And I think that can be done by, dare I say it, Ireland joining NATO and maintaining free trade.

Once so assured then I think England’s own elite and mass opinion congruency on Ireland can bear fruit. See US's own elite and mass opinion congruency on Vietnam. And the fact that Vietnamese interests were also congruent was just a happy extra.

AM said...

Owen,

very few people hold to the notion that the Brits will stay one day longer if the they get the vote in the North to leave. You would have some job on your hands trying to convince both nationalists and unionists that the Brits will stay post referendum voting for them to go. Why would they when every interest they have could just as easily be protected without being here? States in the modern world (because of what you call free trade and neo-imperialism)don't require territorial acquisition.

They were quite willing to pull out in 21 and leave a Unionist/Cumann na nGaedheal coalition. The unionists strategy of threat was the determining factor.

True, they have not left but most expect them to do so if a referendum talks place.
Not because they are nice thoughtful people willing to repect a democratic decision but because they don't give one toss about the unionists.

The US were in Vietnam for what McEwan called a system guarding imperative. There is no threat to the British system from a conservative Ireland. They know and have known for years that Ireland is not Cuba. The extreme right wing of the Tory Party like John Biggs Davison might have deluded themselves that Ireland posed a Cuba style threat but it was hardly a consideration at the heart of British state policy considerations.

I think most Irish people prefer the country to stay out of NATO. Besides the Irish government proved quite willing to facilitate US forays abroad. The Brits needn't worry about them.

Owen Sullivan said...

Anthony,

I will reply to your points in the order you put them:

AM said: “very few people hold to the notion that the Brits will stay one day longer if the they get the vote in the North to leave. “

I know, but that is at best a popular prejudice since there is no historical evidence to support it beyond the British government saying so and Irish people being encouraged to believe that the Brits aren’t lying this time like all the other times.

AM said: “You would have some job on your hands trying to convince both nationalists and unionists that the Brits will stay post referendum voting for them to go.”

You’re right but that’s the problem with popular prejudice: “…rational analysis and argument are often of very little use in combating it.” (Craig, McNulty & Flannigan 1998, page 23)

Craig, Joe, John McNulty & Paul Flannigan, The Real Irish Peace Process, (A Socialist Project Democracy Publication, Belfast 1998).

AM said: “Why would they when every interest they have could just as easily be protected without being here?”

Says you and me both but not them: “So far as could be foreseen, it will never be to Great Britain’s advantage that Northern Ireland should form part of a territory outside His Majesty.s jurisdiction”. (1 January 1949 CAB 29/32) (Sloan, 1997, pages 247-248 and 295). And our Irish national democratic opinions have never counted in their geopolitical analysis. Read it and weep especially the part on “geopolitical dualisms” or imperial lies for colonial consumption:

Sloan, G.R., The Geopolitics of Anglo-Irish Relations in the 20th Century, (Leicester University Press, London & Washington, 1997).

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “States in the modern world (because of what you call free trade and neo-imperialism) don't require territorial acquisition.”

I hear you but they must have missed the meeting because what are American and British troops and mercenaries doing in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Bosnia, Kosovo and Macedonia? And since the British government lies regularly to their own British public about these invasions and occupations abroad, what makes Irish people think they’re being told the truth? Again, read it and weep:

Britain’s Seven Covert Wars
Posted on February 20, 2017 by yorkagainstthewar
https://www.yorkagainstthewar.org.uk/2017/02/20/britains-seven-covert-wars/

And what’s the US still doing in Puerto Rico if it isn’t about imperial territorial acquisition? Read it and weep some more:

MAY 3, 2017
May Day in the Colonial World
by CARLOS BORRERO
http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/05/03/may-day-in-the-colonial-world/

AM said: “They were quite willing to pull out in 21 and leave a Unionist/Cumann na nGaedheal coalition.”

That is only because that move gave them a defensive beach head and the industrial sector of Ireland in the north and a very compliant vassal state in the south (then and now) willing and able with British arms to put down the rest of the non-compliant IRA. As you know Ireland didn’t declare itself a Republic until 1949 when the usual Fine Dee and Fianna Dum lackey parties didn’t control the Irish vassal state government.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The unionists strategy of threat was the determining factor.”

No, that was the British government’s “piggy-in-the-middle” excuse and cover story (then and now). The Unionist tail does not wag the British government dog, never has and never will. They are simply a point on a spear of British occupation and rule.

AM said: “True, they have not left but most expect them to do so if a referendum talks place.”

I know, but this expectation merely comes from the Brits simply saying so. And note we only get a referendum if they give us permission to have one. Now do you see their slight of hand here? Not only do they determine if we get a referendum, but they also determine what we get to vote on in any referendum. This gives them the control and wiggle room to move the goal posts ever further. That’s why Ho Chi Minh never signed a GFA like accord.

AM said: “Not because they are nice thoughtful people willing to repect a democratic decision but because they don't give one toss about the unionists.”

But they never have given one toss about the unionists. That’s why the Brits sent so many to die in the Battle of the Somme among other places. The Brits only care about the Brits which in a geopolitical world: that’s to be expected since all nation-states act in their own perceived best interests. Not your interests or my interests or unionist interests.

AM said: “The US were in Vietnam for what McEwan called a system guarding imperative.”

Bag that euphemism! Like any colonial power the US was in Vietnam to plunder and hoard for its own self-aggrandizing ends. Why else have colonies? Communism then, like Terrorism now, was just a pretext for invading and occupying smaller resource rich nations.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “There is no threat to the British system from a conservative Ireland.”

I agree, but we have to continually say that like a Doctors in a nut ward given the paranoia that dominates and motivates much of British geopolitical policy. I mean seriously, who could fear any post-colonial backwater like Ireland that shits out the likes of a Bertie Ahern or Enda Kenny? Turds that won’t flush! The horror, the horror!

AM said: “They know and have known for years that Ireland is not Cuba.”

Well, we know that for sure. It’s more like Guatemala.

AM said: “The extreme right wing of the Tory Party like John Biggs Davison might have deluded themselves that Ireland posed a Cuba style threat but it was hardly a consideration at the heart of British state policy considerations.”

We disagree. The extreme right wing of the Tory Party, if you can actually discern one from any of their other so called moderate wings, is the heart of British state policy considerations. And always has been as near as I can tell. Recall Churchill and Thatcher among others.

Now read it (again) and come back into the light:

R=PB-C
by Eoghan O’Suilleabhain • 12 April 2004
http://indiamond6.ulib.iupui.edu:81/rpbc.html

AM said: “I think most Irish people prefer the country to stay out of NATO.

We agree.

AM said: “Besides the Irish government proved quite willing to facilitate US forays abroad. The Brits needn't worry about them.”

All the more reason perhaps for Ireland to become an honest woman because what else can Ireland trade for national unification? Bono! Ireland in NATO (as Northern Ireland, Wales & Scotland currently are and have been since 1947) would assure the British securicratic elites that populate the actual deep state UK government.

Besides, all alliances are temporary, just reference SEATO and MEATO which no longer exist. As such joining NATO could be a step backwards to go two steps forward to Irish unification sans the UK (England).

AM said...

Owen,

thanks for this detailed response.

It is however so far removed from what people think, you might as well argue that Elvis is still alive and directing the lot of it. He just might be but try convincing people that you have it right and the rest of the world is wrong.

That is the task you face with putting forward that type of analysis.

It is too long to respond to but that is hardly your fault. I'll restrict myself to bit by bit responses given the amount of other things the day has to be given over to.

We have discussed this type of thing often in the past, including over lunch when it is easier to tease the matters out. I think you are more nuanced in your view of it all face to face but seem to throw this out to test it.

The belief that the British will go is based not on their mere say so but on hard nosed political calculations as to what would be in the British state's best interest in the event of a referendum asking them to leave.

The entire EU believes it also and they are hardly saying it because they will take Britain's word but because the logic leads them to believe it.

I don't believe they are leaving but for different reasons. But I do subscribe to the notion that the reason they stay is also the reason they will leave. Even those republicans most suspicious of the Brits, feel they will have no option but to go if a border poll favours them doing so. Those republicans are at the stage where they want to esure the Brits go on terms not advantageous to the Brits.


There is no evidence that the belief that they will go post referendum requestiong that they do so, is merely a popular prejudice. I would suggest the prejudice is on your own part, based on an ahistorical view of international relations. You suffer the infliction you ascribe to others: a lack of rational analysis on this matter. But I did enjoy the source of your quote on rational analysis - from those who showed the least signs of having any. Read my piece Workers of The West Fight

And at the end of your first comment, you rely on a 1949 memorandum submitted to government by a mandarin for consideration. We can always find the mandarin, the John Biggs Davision, the conspiracy theorist ... what we need to find is the spine of policy not the meanderings on its margins.

Owen Sullivan said...

Anthony,

I agree that what I propose is so far removed from what most people think.

But you've said it yourself that you won't see a United Ireland in your lifetime.

So how do you square that with England leaving Ireland post-Brexit within 2 years?

You're not that old.

That said I will read your piece "Workers of the West Fight".

In the meantime though note that British Rear Admiral Sloan wrote his book in 1997.

And he wrote:

Given the current preferences of the British government with respect to Northern Ireland, this most recent geopolitical dualism looks likely to underpin British strategic policy for some time to come (Sloan 1997, page 266)

And you really think there is no hard evidence of this?

A mandarin maybe, but Admiral Sloan is not some wild marginal man in the wings like you or me, and his full review of Irish-British geopolitical history is hardly ahistoric.

And whatever your contempt for those Irish Socialists, even a stopped clock is right twice a day because rhetorically speaking how is this "... a lack of rational analysis on this matter."?:

"We are asked to believe that Britain has spent £23.5 billion in the north to defend the democratic rights of 900,000 unionists in Ireland out of the goodness of its heart. The whole idea has no precedent in British imperialist history. That it pumps in a subvention of nearly £4 billion every year for this purpose. That it has conducted a brutal and dirty war in Ireland that has often sullied its international reputation out of a loyal obligation for the unionist people." (Craig, McNulty & Flannigan 1998, page 23)

Sorry I can't say more now, got to run to work.

But thanks for publishing these "...meanderings."

AM said...

Owen,

military intervention is never ruled out by these states. Where their interests cannot be protected without territorial acquisition they will go for invasion. But they don't need the territory as such but rather to suppress the opposition to their interests. They will be out of those places when such suppression is no longer needed and their interests will carry on pretty much as before. We need merely look at all the countries they are not in to see that such acquisition is not necessary.

Rather than miss the meeting they were very much at the one taking place in the 21st century while some of their critics have their minds focussed on the 19th.

We know the British lie but it would be strange if you were the only one able to see something that virtually no one else does. People here don't make their judgement on what the British say, but on the wider field that lies in front of them: that field includes an assessment of British self interest and what is Britain likely to do to protect that self interest.

I know nothing about the Puerto Rican situation but implicit in what you say is that they have no self interest in those countries where they do not territorial acquiesce. Few believe that.

"Beware the owner of one book" is a line that might make you weep when you read it.

Their willingness to pull out in 21 was because their interests would be protected without territorial acquisition. Which sort of weakens the point you try to make - that territorial acquisition is an imperative. It is anything but.

AM said...

Owen,

No, that was the British government’s “piggy-in-the-middle” excuse and cover story (then and now). The Unionist tail does not wag the British government dog, never has and never will. They are simply a point on a spear of British occupation and rule.

Britain does not need a piggy in the middle excuse for being in Ireland but to mask its behaviour while in Ireland. British power and security is not jeopardised by relinquishing territorial acquisition. If they needed a territorial foothold they as easily claim Portadown and relinquish the remainder to Dublin.

There will be a referendum at some point in the future. There was one in 73. Few doubt it or see a good reason for the British to want to deny it. But the power should not reside with them even though they might take the view that one every seven years would be too polarising and destabilising.


That they have never given one toss about the unionists is what fuelled much unionist angst. The unionists have not trusted the British and have employed the strategy of threat from early days. This mistrust is the real drive behind partition.

McEwan's argument was that there was nothing within Vietnam for the US to really gain from: that the real motivation was in protecting the wider capitalist system against the rise of Communism. A reading of Kissinger and his power politics
through many lenses, the geopolitical strategies employed, the recalibrating of US policy to meet changing regional power balances, all indicate this.

Owen Sullivan said...

Anthony,

Your “Workers of the West – Fight!” is a humorous piece! I especially love your line that: “Sean Lemass made in relation to the Irish Labour Party - harmless docile men not to be accused of going red as they were simply not going anywhere.” But it’s more ad hominem than argument.

Sure there are a lot of peculiar people in some left groups.

They are largely irrelevant because they are marginalized.

And yes their own bit of bizarre helps accelerate their marginalization.

But I can also show you some peculiar people in some right groups.

Who are just as fractious and back biting as anyone on the left.

Look at just some of machinations of players in the DUP.

However they are only “main stream” because…

Their positions are fundamentally congruent with Brit elite interests.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The belief that the British will go is based not on their mere say so but on hard nosed political calculations as to what would be in the British state's best interest in the event of a referendum asking them to leave. The entire EU believes it also and they are hardly saying it because they will take Britain's word but because the logic leads them to believe it.”

You’re right: it’s a belief based on logic but not Britain’s logic. Kind of like the Father telling his adult son not to marry his girlfriend. The Father offers compelling logic and facts but son doesn’t listen and marries her anyway. I too can and have made all kinds of hard logical arguments as to why England should get out of Ireland, but they still stay.

AM said: “I don't believe they are leaving but for different reasons.”

Neither do I but do pray tell.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “McEwan's argument was that there was nothing within Vietnam for the US to really gain from: that the real motivation was in protecting the wider capitalist system against the rise of Communism.”

Anthony,

McEwan’s argument is not borne out by the facts:

The crude oil reserves in Vietnam are the second largest in East Asia, behind China, with 4.4 billion barrels, or 630 million tons. Among them, Bach Ho(White Tiger), Rang Dong (Dawn), Hang Ngoc, Dai Hung (Big Bear), and Su Tu Den (Ruby) are the largest oil producing fields in the country.

http://oilgasvietnam.com/post/97/Industry-Facts.html


Vietnam has surpassed Malaysia and India to become the world’s third biggest rubber producer, according to the latest statistics released early this month by the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC).

http://tuoitrenews.vn/business/18353/vietnam-becomes-worlds-third-biggest-rubber-producer

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “that the real motivation was in protecting the wider capitalist system against the rise of Communism.”

That’s what the Pentagon said. Translation: their real motivation was in protecting US imperial interests against the rise of independent nationalism no matter its modality. And still is. See US subjugation of Hawaii and the Philippines in the 1890’s and the current US subjugation of Iraq and Afghanistan today. Different dresses, same dance. To the extent that such subjugation can be done with a bribe and a handshake then it likely will be otherwise the usual clubs and fists will do too.

AM said: “A reading of Kissinger and his power politics through many lenses, the geopolitical strategies employed, the recalibrating of US policy to meet changing regional power balances, all indicate this.“

Regional power balances? Where? Not in non-communist Cambodia in 1969-1974 or non-communist East Timor in 1975-1977. In fact soon after the US left Vietnam in April 1975, communist Vietnam went to war with communist China. To borrow a phrase: "Beware the owner of one book" is a line that might make you weep when you read it. And I would also add: beware the owner of any book by Henry Kissinger unless they are a prosecutor out to prove his many lies and war crimes. A better book would be: The Price of Power: Kissinger in the Nixon Whitehouse by Seymour Hersh which proves that Kissinger will say anything to anyone at anytime to cover up his own sorry ass. If communism were in vogue he’d be a communist. But that all said I get that perception can and does guide policy.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “We know the British lie but it would be strange if you were the only one able to see something that virtually no one else does.”

Kind of like the Emperor’s new clothes.

But all kidding aside, it isn’t just me who sees the obvious.

The Brits are still in Ireland.

As predicted by British Rear Admiral Sloan in 1997 that they would be.

Now for comparison sake recall Gerry Adams claiming a united Ireland by 2016.

People here don't make their judgement on what the British say, but on the wider field that lies in front of them: that field includes an assessment of British self interest and what is Britain likely to do to protect that self interest.

Then why is the big elephant in the room still there?

I know nothing about the Puerto Rican situation but implicit in what you say is that they have no self interest in those countries where they do not territorial acquiesce. Few believe that.

You misunderstand me: all countries are self-interested and imperial countries even more so especially where they have a beach head, i.e. Guantanomo, South Korea, South Vietnam, East Germany, Northern Ireland etc. But that doesn’t mean they have to have a beach head to get what they want. For instance in 1949, even while the cold war was raging, the US granted the Philippines independence in exchange for a large US naval and air base and the Philippines joining SEATO. Not only could this have been the American foreign policy model in Vietnam (so much for Kissinger’s regional power balances excuse), it could also be the British foreign policy model in Ireland especially given the democratic deficit that animates much of British public policy for their national security affairs.

AM said: "Beware the owner of one book" is a line that might make you weep when you read it.

Let me know what you think of Seymour Hersh’s “The Price of Power.”

Their willingness to pull out in 21 was because their interests would be protected without territorial acquisition. Which sort of weakens the point you try to make - that territorial acquisition is an imperative. It is anything but.

I think we may be talking past each other.

AM said: “Rather than miss the meeting they were very much at the one taking place in the 21st century while some of their critics have their minds focussed on the 19th.”

PLUS ÇA CHANGE, PLUS C'EST LA MÊME CHOSE

Mark Twain on Imperialism
http://www.historywiz.com/primarysources/marktwain-imperialism.htm

AM said...

Owen,

is it paranoia within the British state or paranoia amongst in the conspiracy theorists? That the British are only in Ireland not because their interests are threatened by not being here but only because they have paranoia-induced anxiety about those interests being threatened if they pull out, just doesn't have much in the way of traction. Other than yourself, I have not heard nobody recently make that type of case.

Owen,

The extreme right wing of the Tory Party, if you can actually discern one from any of their other so called moderate wings, is the heart of British state policy considerations. And always has been as near as I can tell. Recall Churchill and Thatcher among others.

John Biggs Davison was wholly unrepresentative of Tory Party thinking and his thoughts were never hegemonic. Thatcher was willing to consider repartition. There is nothing to indicate she or her team felt Ireland was a potential Cuba and that this consideration drove policy.

That Ireland should join the imperialist NATO seems the strangest of anti-Imperialist suggestions.

Owen Sullivan said...

is it paranoia within the British state or paranoia amongst in the conspiracy theorists?

British Rear Admiral Sloane is part of the British State.

And he is not the only one for whom paranoia drives policy.

Henry Kissinger called it the Domino Theory.

John F. Kennedy called it the Missile Gap.


That the British are only in Ireland not because their interests are threatened by not being here but only because they have paranoia-induced anxiety about those interests being threatened if they pull out, just doesn't have much in the way of traction. Other than yourself, I have not heard nobody recently make that type of case.

That the British are in Ireland for their own interests shouldn’t be hard to comprehend.

And I never said “only because”.

.
John Biggs Davison was wholly unrepresentative of Tory Party thinking and his thoughts were never hegemonic.

I don’t think he was wholly unrepresentative.

He was a member of the Conservative Monday Club:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservative_Monday_Club


Thatcher was willing to consider repartition. There is nothing to indicate she or her team felt Ireland was a potential Cuba and that this consideration drove policy.

Repartition is just a reconfiguration of British occupation and rule in Ireland.

The fact that she was willing to consider that is an indication.

After all, they ain’t there for you, they’re there for themselves.

Which brings us back to R=PB-C and British Rear Admiral Sloan.

And it is not a conspiracy since lying to the Irish is not a crime.

It’s just a measurable manifestation of institutional elite British interests.

No different really than the US in Guantanamo.


That Ireland should join the imperialist NATO seems the strangest of anti-Imperialist suggestions.

Much like it was for the Philippines it would be a step back to go two steps forward.

And note that SEATO no longer exists since all alliances are temporary.

Know too that I am not wedded to this idea.

But I don’t see what else Ireland can trade for unification short of joining the UK.

AM said...

Anthony,

But you've said it yourself that you won't see a United Ireland in your lifetime.

So how do you square that with England leaving Ireland post-Brexit within 2 years?

You're not that old.


You didn't read what I did say.

The British would leave Ireland in the event of a referendum in the North favouring that. As I have consistently argued (and which you have seem consistently to have not read) I don't, however, think any such referendum will muster the required numbers.

British Rear Admiral Sloan has a view. How representative is it? We have learned over the years that there are a range of views within the state, being expressed at any one time. They are frequently contradictory and for that reason can't all make it through to becoming policy. Is there peer reviews of his book?

I have not read his book and make no charge of ahistoric against him. I said your take was ahistoric.


In the meantime though note that wrote his book in 1997.

And he wrote:

Given the current preferences of the British government with respect to Northern Ireland, this most recent geopolitical dualism looks likely to underpin British strategic policy for some time to come (Sloan 1997, page 266)

And you really think there is no hard evidence of this?

A mandarin maybe, but Admiral Sloan is not some wild marginal man in the wings like you or me, and his full review of Irish-British geopolitical history is hardly ahistoric.

The Irish Socialists I referred to have an opinion: that's it. They invariably fail to win people over to it. And if we rely on stopped clocks to guide us .... we stay stuck in the same groove as the clock.

AM said...

Owen,

“Workers of the West – Fight!” is more observation than ad hominin. People who were not at the meeting and hadn't been at those type of meetings in a while accurately worked out who some of those in attendance were.

I can also show you some peculiar people in some right groups.

John Biggs Davison was one of them.

Their positions are fundamentally congruent with Brit elite interests.

If so, how did the Monday Club, for example, lose on both the Anglo Irish Agreement and Sunningdale?

AM said...

Owen,


You’re right: it’s a belief based on logic but not Britain’s logic.

Not so. And in your argument thus far you have failed to persuasively show why it is not British logic.

I too can and have made all kinds of hard logical arguments as to why England should get out of Ireland, but they still stay.

You even manage to confuse the issue with that. It is not about why Britain should get out of Ireland now but the logic of Britain's position in the event of a border poll in favour of them leaving.

Britain will not be leaving any time soon because the border poll in my view will not favour withdrawal.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The British would leave Ireland in the event of a referendum in the North favouring that.”

How would you know that?

And who is stopping them from having this referendum?

AM said: “As I have consistently argued (and which you have seem consistently to have not read) I don't, however, think any such referendum will muster the required numbers. “

All the more reason they should have it.

So what’s holding them back from having this demonstration election?

AM said:“British Rear Admiral Sloan has a view. How representative is it?”

He has an unrepresentative but nonetheless elitist ruling point of view.

Recall my earlier discussion about the UK’s democratic deficits.

AM said: “We have learned over the years that there are a range of views within the state, being expressed at any one time. They are frequently contradictory and for that reason can't all make it through to becoming policy.”

Proof again that pluralism isn’t a very good political theory about democracy.

As such the British elitist status quo policy on normalization remains for N.I.

AM said: “Is there peer reviews of his book?”

Yes but I can’t get this website to open:

Journal
The RUSI Journal
Volume 143, 1998 - Issue 4
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03071849808446294?journalCode=rusi20

AM: “I have not read his book and make no charge of ahistoric against him. I said your take was ahistoric.”

Can you point out anywhere in Irish history where England, or for that matter any imperial occupying power, has respected the occupied nation’s democratic rights and just left because they were told to?

According to this survey most people in the 32 counties want a United Ireland?

Does Ireland want to be united?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Obj-NpadJAc

And that has always been the historic democratic case.

If you have historic evidence otherwise then please provide it.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “If so, how did the Monday Club, for example, lose on both the Anglo Irish Agreement and Sunningdale?”

I didn’t say their positions were always congruent, just fundamentally.

Fact that they couldn’t see through these imperial frauds doesn’t change Brit rule in N.I. Anyway I pointed this Monday Club out as proof that Mr. Davison’s opinions, though like him peculiar, were not wholly unrepresented in British politics. In fact I don’t see much difference between his political peculiarity and Margaret Thatcher’s, differences of degree maybe, but not kind.

Owen Sullivan said...

You’re right: it’s a belief based on logic but not Britain’s logic.

AM said: “Not so. And in your argument thus far you have failed to persuasively show why it is not British logic.”

My argument has always been that nations act in their own perceived best interests.

Not yours or mine.

Altruism never really figures into it.

And the proof is in the pudding, they’re still occupying and ruling Ireland.

No matter the Irish or even English democratic consensus.

British Rear Admiral Sloan’s admission about all this is proof of British logic.

AM said: “You even manage to confuse the issue with that. It is not about why Britain should get out of Ireland now but the logic of Britain's position in the event of a border poll in favour of them leaving. “

Since that is not likely ever to happen (which is the point of all gerrymanders) then it is merely a belief based upon wishful thinking. An aspiration.

But even if they should ever permit such a border poll…..

And even if that poll favored them leaving….

The logic of their position will be to just ignore it if they want to.

Why? Because might makes right and past is prologue.

Hence British Rear Admiral Sloan's word coinage: geopolitical dualism (i.e. lie).

Britain will not be leaving any time soon because the border poll in my view will not favour withdrawal.

I agree which again is the whole point of gerrymandering.

It ensures the desired undemocratic result.

So why not just let the English people vote on this issue?

Well, because that would just ensure the undesired democratic result.

As such the British will likely remain in Ireland for a very long time.

Hence my thesis that there’ll be a United Korea before a United Ireland.

That said though I would not mind being proved wrong.

AM said...

Owen,

rather than MeEwan's argument not being borne out by thr facts it seems that more applies to your own than his.

Diane Elson, in seeking to demonstrate that imperialism was as real in the post- colonial word as it had been during it, cited McEwan to rebut the argument that American was in Vietnam for some benign reason and not out of self-interest. The system guarding imperative McEwan referred to was the US acting as global capitalist hegemon and not mere nation state, was striving to preserve the system that would ensure the continuation of free market politics and the profit that flowed from the world economy. So even if the US had no visible assets in Vietnam that it was trying to extract, it had a very selfish reason for being there.


You provide a link which tells us nothing about the US interest in Vietnam. You seem to hope that the reader will join dots for you. Your citing of rubber is much the same. How you can infer strategy and interests almost 50 years ago form today's situation is again ahistoric.

Here is what Fred Landis (listed as an investigative reporter) said:


I fought the Vietnam war for 10 years, on the domestic front. It coincided with my college years and I was an anti-war activist. During that time I heard every conspiracy theory right or left. Nobody ever suggested that oil had anything to do with the conflict.

I think the question most people will ask is how do you alone (with the exception of some conspiracy sites) know that the war was fought for oil?

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “rather than MeEwan's argument not being borne out by thr facts it seems that more applies to your own than his. Diane Elson, in seeking to demonstrate that imperialism was as real in the post- colonial word as it had been during it, cited McEwan to rebut the argument that American was in Vietnam for some benign reason and not out of self-interest. The system guarding imperative McEwan referred to was the US acting as global capitalist hegemon and not mere nation state, was striving to preserve the system that would ensure the continuation of free market politics and the profit that flowed from the world economy. So even if the US had no visible assets in Vietnam that it was trying to extract, it had a very selfish reason for being there.”

Imperialism, whether Persian, Mongolian, Roman, Spanish, British, Belgian or Japanese, is just one country’s nationalism spilling over its own borders for its own self-aggrandizing and systemic ends. In that regard the US is not much different than the British were in acting as a global capitalist hegemon (aka imperialists) for their own power grabbing purposes. As such they were and are mere nation states trying to control the world economy for their own national self-interests. Therefore, the US was in Vietnam for the same reasons the French and Japanese were, i.e. to extract and control visible assets there. Plus ca change…

IMPERIALISM
noun
1. the policy of extending the rule or authority of an empire or nation over foreign countries, or of acquiring and holding colonies and dependencies.
2.
advocacy of imperial or sovereign interests over the interests of the dependent states.
3.
imperial government; rule by an emperor or empress.
4.
an imperial system of government.
5.
British. the policy of so uniting the separate parts of an empire with separate governments as to secure for certain purposes a single state.

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/imperialism

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “You provide a link which tells us nothing about the US interest in Vietnam. You seem to hope that the reader will join dots for you. Your citing of rubber is much the same. How you can infer strategy and interests almost 50 years ago form today's situation is again ahistoric.”

US foreign policy hasn’t changed since the Plains Indian Wars.

It’s always been about profiteering and racketeering for a few:

WAR IS A RACKET by US Major General Smedley Butler

https://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/warisaracket.html

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “Here is what Fred Landis (listed as an investigative reporter) said: I fought the Vietnam war for 10 years, on the domestic front. It coincided with my college years and I was an anti-war activist. During that time I heard every conspiracy theory right or left. Nobody ever suggested that oil had anything to do with the conflict.”

He means nobody ever suggested it to him.

But Vietnam Vets I served with told me they saw off-shore oil platforms when flying in and out of Vietnam.

And while not on par with Middle East oil drilling, Vietnamese oil production potential was no secret.

Southeast Asian Resources The Oil Beneath Indochina
By BARRY WEISBERG, March 17, 1971

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1971/3/17/southeast-asian-resources-the-oil-beneath/

Nor is the fact that just about every US Secretary of State since 1945 was an agent of the Rockefeller family.

No conspiracy as much as just a coincidence of elite interests.

So US foreign policy, not surprisingly, since at least 1900 (soon after the British Navy changed from coal firing to oil firing ships) has always been about oil and as always controlling foreign markets.

This non-conspiracy website, as do others, verifies what those Vietnam vets told me.

Visit to Vietnam Shell Oil Drilling Platform 1974 Left to Right: Mr. Ho Tan Phat, President of Viet Nam Power Company - Mr. Tran van Khoi, CEO Petroleum and Minerals Agency - Republic of China’s Ambassador to Viet Nam - HE Nguyen van Kieu, Viet Nam Ambassador to Republic of China - Mr. Khuong Huu Dieu, President of Industrial Development Bank - Shell Drilling Specialist (Sikorsky Helicopter in the background)

1968: The Very Beginning of Vietnam’s Off-Shore Oil & Gas Development

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “I think the question most people will ask is how do you alone (with the exception of some conspiracy sites) know that the war was fought for oil?”

Most people?

How would you know this?

Me alone?

Read this 1971 article from Harvard University’s publication “The Crimson”:

Southeast Asian Resources The Oil Beneath Indochina
By BARRY WEISBERG, March 17, 1971

While oil may be important for understanding the motivation for the invasion of Laos, it also appears to be assuming greater importance in the formation of overall war policy for Southeast Asia.

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1971/3/17/southeast-asian-resources-the-oil-beneath/

Owen Sullivan said...

FYI - the websites on point (it looks like I missed posting some of them earlier here):


Southeast Asian Resources The Oil Beneath Indochina
By BARRY WEISBERG, March 17, 1971

While oil may be important for understanding the motivation for the invasion of Laos, it also appears to be assuming greater importance in the formation of overall war policy for Southeast Asia.

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1971/3/17/southeast-asian-resources-the-oil-beneath/

1968: The Very Beginning of Vietnam’s Off-Shore Oil & Gas Development

Visit to Vietnam Shell Oil Drilling Platform 1974 Left to Right: Mr. Ho Tan Phat, President of Viet Nam Power Company - Mr. Tran van Khoi, CEO Petroleum and Minerals Agency - Republic of China’s Ambassador to Viet Nam - HE Nguyen van Kieu, Viet Nam Ambassador to Republic of China - Mr. Khuong Huu Dieu, President of Industrial Development Bank - Shell Drilling Specialist (Sikorsky Helicopter in the background)

http://huongduongtxd.com/offshoreoilexploration.pdf



Black Gold Hot Gold, Ch. 3, 2001, by Marshall D. Smith

"Even close-up observers would only notice many small explosions occurring daily in the waters of the South China Sea and thought it was only part of the 'war.' The U.S. Navy carriers had begun Operation Linebacker One, and Standard Oil had begun its ten year oil survey of the seabed off of Vietnam. And the Vietnamese, Chinese and everybody else around, including the Americans, were none the wiser. The oil survey hardly cost Standard Oil a nickel, the U.S. taxpayers paid for it."

http://www.masterjules.net/oilinvietnam.htm

AM said...

That’s what the Pentagon said. Translation: their real motivation was in protecting US imperial interests against the rise of independent nationalism no matter its modality. And still is.

It is not only what it said but what it thought. David Halberstam in The Brightest and the Best lambasts the Kennedy Administration for a plethora of policy mistakes and miscalculations based on this type of thinking in relation to the growth of communism.

US imperial interests are inextricably entrenched in the system of global capitalism. That is what makes it imperialist: the need to open and retain markets. Because a country might have no resource interests for the US, does not rule out the US invading it if the wider system demands it. A more important question is do countries need territorial acquisition to do this? The answer would seem to be a resounding no.

Regional power balances existed during the Vietnam War, much the result of US foreign policy post world war 2 driven by containment and predicated on preserving the widest free market areas possible but also playing Russia off against China. Perhaps the greatest regional power play of all was US foreign policy in respect of playing off the Soviets against the Chinese. Much of Kissinger/Nixon White House latter days were taken up with this. The US built numerous military alliances and bases after the War in Asia, Europa and the Middle East as part of its global strategy not because it needed oil or rubber out of any particular country it installed a military base in.

Kissinger is a realist from the same school of international relations thought as Hans Mogenthau and saw the world in a particular way: a way that guided much of US policy during the Nixon administration, (even Kennedy’s administration as well, to whom Morgenthau was an advisor). He is one of the most important figures in international relations in the last century. A war criminal of the highest order whom both Hersh and Hitchens took apart in their respective works. There is no need to take at face value anything he says, just important to read what he says. But I am sure Hersh had quite a lot to say about the acquisition oil driving US policy in Vietnam? Can you cite where he shows that oil was the real/primary reason for US involvement in the war? You have read the book so it should require no Herculean effort to provide the page references. He could hardly have missed out on it.

AM said...

Owen,


Kind of like the Emperor’s new clothes.

With you looking increasingly like the emperor. Mere puffery works as long as you don't set out to try and prove it.

But all kidding aside, it isn’t just me who sees the obvious.

Just that you seem to miss the obvious.

The Brits are still in Ireland. As predicted by British Rear Admiral Sloan in 1997 that they would be.

But not for the reasons he seems to have believed.

Peer review?

Now for comparison sake recall Gerry Adams claiming a united Ireland by 2016.

Apples and pears. We know Adams was spoofing for political career reasons.

Then why is the big elephant in the room still there?

Nature of politics in the modern world. Same reason they are still in Wolverhampton or Bradford. They calculate that in their self interest, not the unionists self interest, that it is better to stick with the consent principal than abandon it.

I know nothing about the Puerto Rican situation but implicit in what you say is that they have no self interest in those countries where they do not territorial acquiesce. Few believe that.

Kissinger’s regional power balances excuse

As brutal as Kissinger was, he seemed to present a much more coherent argument for his power balance than you do against it. Power politics has shaped our modern world.

AM said...

Owen Sullivan said...


British Rear Admiral Sloane is part of the British State.

As are the range of others who tell us something entirely different. Yet Sloane is supposed to be representative of the state position. Why? Is there a peer review of his work? It doesn't exactly seem to have set the world alight.

The US had a domino theory perspective before Kissinger.

The US view of the threat to global capitalism was very real, not paranoia. And it responded in capital's interest to curb that threat.

That the British are in Ireland for their own interests shouldn’t be hard to comprehend.

Tell us what that interest is. It is not because they need the territory.

Those of us around long enough to remember John Biggs Davison knew what a Colonel Blimp type character he was.

The Monday Club was a right wing pressure group that only ever had a minority of Tory MPs in it, managed to get half a dozen ministers in it around the early 70s (i think) when Heath was in power. It took the likes of Bill Craig over to London so he could rant about shoot to kill but lost out when it came to the big policy decisions.

Repartition is just a reconfiguration of British occupation and rule in Ireland.

Absolutely, but she was not getting rid of the part considered to have no strategic value and retaining the part that had. Her calculations were made on different factors.

AM said...

Owen,

AM said: “The British would leave Ireland in the event of a referendum in the North favouring that.”

How would you know that?


The logic inherent in the totality of their position leads me to be fairly certain of it. They don't need the territory and would no longer feel obligated to abide by the consent principle, which they have elevated into a serious diplomatic asset, doing exactly what the Brits do in these matters in pursuit of their own interests. But if people think they are really in Ireland for the potato crop then that sort of power politics explanation is not going to appeal to them.

And who is stopping them from having this referendum?

Their own calculation that it will make no difference to the status quo (an outcome you believe is likely) and will be more trouble for them than it is worth because of the polarising that London rather than Dublin has to manage in the wake of the referendum.

Sloane has an unrepresentative but nonetheless elitist ruling point of view.

As I am sure does the Cardinal but if we are talking about the view that represents policy rather than opinion, then the view of the Cardinal is not all that relevant. I am sure you have heard of Colonel Blimp.

Recall my earlier discussion about the UK’s democratic deficits.

pluralism isn’t a very good political theory about democracy

Where we have a plurality of views, interests, motivations, ethnicities, genders - then pluralism is a useful theory about democracy. Its limitations are numerous but all theories of democracy suffer from that. Marxist pluralism seemed pretty much okay as an explanatory tool.

As such the British elitist status quo policy on normalization remains for N.I.

Until such times as the situation changes with a vote in the North for them to leave. Their interests will be protected much as before. Ireland is hardly Cuba regardless of what John Blimp Davison claimed.

Peer Review - the website is open but there is no link on it. It doesn't tell us if the book has been reviewed or is up for review. The entire page has taken 10 page views. It doesn't sound promising in terms of influence.

Can you point out anywhere in Irish history where England, or for that matter any imperial occupying power, has respected the occupied nation’s democratic rights and just left because they were told to?

It no more needs to occupy the North than it does the South. It will hardly want to appear like Israel in the West Bank or Gaza, where the term "occupation" is part of the everyday discourse. Very few people in Ireland use the term "occupation" - a smattering of republicans. People when they refer to "occupied Ireland" are looked on quaintly even by many of those resolutely opposed to the British presence.

According to this survey most people in the 32 counties want a United Ireland?

They have a preference for it but want it peacefully, have put it on the long finger, and have underpinned the principle of Northern consent as being a necessary condition of it.

AM said...

Owen,

I didn’t say their positions were always congruent, just fundamentally

This is a tenuous attempt to cover all bases.

I pointed this Monday Club out as proof that Mr. Davison’s opinions, though like him peculiar, were not wholly unrepresented in British politics.

"not wholly unrepresented" sounds like a weak plea of mitigation in a court.

In fact I don’t see much difference between his political peculiarity and Margaret Thatcher’s, differences of degree maybe, but not kind

He was a Colonel Blimp whose views were not Tory policy: she was PM and drove Tory Policy.

My argument has always been that nations act in their own perceived best interests.

While persisting failing to show what those best interests are.

Altruism never really figures into it.

Haven't heard anybody say that it did.

And the proof is in the pudding, they’re still occupying and ruling Ireland.

That is much like the assertion that the definitive proof in the pudding that McGuinness was a British agent was the attack on Micky Donnelly. Having a pudding is one thing: identifying the ingredients, another.

British Rear Admiral Sloan’s admission about all this is proof of British logic.

It is proof only of Sloane's opinion: noting more.

So why not just let the English people vote on this issue?

A position I pushed in London back in 95 and in some writings.

Because it would violate a vital policy position, would contravene a self determination principle that they elevated (self-determination in international law is not restricted to the national), damage their power asset of diplomacy, (something they enhanced their power with as their empire shrank).

So we can see lots of self-interest driven reasons for them not wanting to allow a UK wide referendum, but these are junctural and time specific. That changes in the wake of a referendum in the North.

The British don't need to stay and they don't need to go. Either way their long term vital interests are protected.

AM said...

Owen,

re the Monday Club and the Tory Party:

I didn’t say their positions were always congruent, just fundamentally.

Explain the difference.

What is its influence if they lose on such major issues?

How can the expressed views of one of its members then be cited as a reflection of British state strategy? He might just as easily have said the British need to stay in Ireland to access potatoes for British restaurant chains and then by your logic that would be evidence of why the British are in Ireland.

the US is not much different than the British were in acting as a global capitalist hegemon (aka imperialists) for their own power grabbing purposes. As such they were and are mere nation states trying to control the world economy for their own national self-interests. Therefore, the US was in Vietnam for the same reasons the French and Japanese were, i.e. to extract and control visible assets there. Plus ca change….

Which you tell us was oil. Why not rice? The literature seems to show them in Vietnam neither for one or the other. Your use of the term "capitalist hegemon" should lead you to ponder how that hegemon is best protected. The US were in Vietnam for reasons of capital even if they never took or wanted one grain of rice out of the country. But being in it for reasons of capital is quite different from being in it for oil. Their interest in oil seemed to lie in ensuring it did not reach the troops fighting the war against the US.

Owen Sullivan said...

OS said:”That’s what the Pentagon said. Translation: their real motivation was in protecting US imperial interests against the rise of independent nationalism no matter its modality. And still is.”

AM said: “It is not only what it said but what it thought. David Halberstam in The Brightest and the Best lambasts the Kennedy Administration for a plethora of policy mistakes and miscalculations based on this type of thinking in relation to the growth of communism.”

You mean: The Best and the Brightest (1972) which is an account by journalist David Halberstam of the origins of the Vietnam War published by Random House.

This book focuses mostly on US government decision making during the years 1960-1965.

Yet US military involvement in Vietnam (to put down the Vietnamese) was from 1945-1975.

Like many others who lived through a lot of that time period I don’t think for a moment (as did Mr. Halberstam) that Vietnam was a tragic inevitability that the US walked into. But you can get a lot of airtime on television in the US, like he did, preaching this self serving narrative about the US as victim of its own mistakes while having the best of intentions. No where in this book, or in any work published by the US Defense or State Departments, will you ever see the admission or observation that the US criminally and dishonestly invaded and occupied Vietnam for its very own selfish ends. Rest assured that Mr. Halberstam never had to dine alone in Washington, D.C.

Here are two withering peer reviews of Mr. Halberstam’s book:

SONS OF THE MORNING by Mary McCarthy

Despite the tone of concern and civic commitment, the book has less to contribute to the public interest (compare the Pentagon Papers) than to consumer appetites for unauthorized prowls down the corridors of power.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/1973/01/25/sons-of-the-morning/


David Halberstam and The Second Biggest Lie Ever Told:
A Look Back at The Best and the Brightest
By Jim DiEugenio

It would have been instructive to know where the author was getting his information, since, in the wake of an epic foreign policy disaster, many people had a lot at stake in covering their tracks.

https://kennedysandking.com/john-f-kennedy-reviews/halberstam-david-the-best-and-the-brightest-part-1

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “US imperial interests are inextricably entrenched in the system of global capitalism. That is what makes it imperialist: the need to open and retain markets.

No, that is what continues to make it imperialist. The US was imperialist long before it went overseas and pushed systemic global capitalism.

AM said: “Because a country might have no resource interests for the US, does not rule out the US invading it if the wider system demands it.

If the wider system demands it?

The US government, which is and always has been a creature of great incorporated family fortunes, doesn’t do anything it doesn’t want to do no matter who else demands it.

And I can’t think of any examples of the US invading a country that didn’t have some resource or perceived strategic value worth taking or dominating.

AM said: “A more important question is do countries need territorial acquisition to do this? The answer would seem to be a resounding no.

Agreed but why does the US continue to invade and occupy countries?

What wider system is demanding that the US occupy Guantanamo or Puerto Rico?

Since the 1890’s?

AM said: “Regional power balances existed during the Vietnam War, much the result of US foreign policy post world war 2 driven by containment and predicated on preserving the widest free market areas possible but also playing Russia off against China.

But US foreign policy before WWII was also driven by containment and preserving the widest possible free market areas for US businesses. That was the reason for the US fighting the anti-Communist Japanese in China (in part on behalf of the Communist Chinese) since 1936.

Japanese imperial capitalist forces and American imperial capitalist forces simply collided in the Pacific over British, Dutch and American colonies there (largely over oil). In fact this policy of containment and preserving the widest possible free market harks back to at least the War of 1812, the Monroe Doctrine and the Louisiana Purchase.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “Perhaps the greatest regional power play of all was US foreign policy in respect of playing off the Soviets against the Chinese.”

This is standard American academic speak. A Chinese fellow once told me that it was China through the strategic brilliance of Mao and Chou that played the US off against the USSR by keeping up the pretense that Communism was monolithic when in fact it was not. They played Nixon and Kissinger for dupes.

AM said: “Much of Kissinger/Nixon White House latter days were taken up with this.”

And they often used this as a cover or excuse for their treacherous foreign policy incompetence. Who can forget that it was Kissinger who successfully advised Nixon to side with the military dictatorship in Pakistan versus the free market democracy in India during the war there in 1970-1971?

Nixon and Kissinger’s Forgotten Shame by Gary J. Bassept SEPT. 29, 2013
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/30/opinion/nixon-and-kissingers-forgotten-shame.html

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The US built numerous military alliances and bases after the War in Asia, Europa and the Middle East as part of its global strategy not because it needed oil or rubber out of any particular country it installed a military base in.”

And they weren’t building them just for the sunny beaches.

Kissinger is a realist from the same school of international relations thought as Hans Mogenthau and saw the world in a particular way: a way that guided much of US policy during the Nixon administration, (even Kennedy’s administration as well, to whom Morgenthau was an advisor).

That’s what Henry Kissinger even says about himself.

But ever notice how he never sides with left wing or political progressives in the US? That’s because he is a conservative capitalist ideologue in service to corporate power. And he always has been. As such his ideology drives his so called world view.

In fact he is notorious as a man who doesn’t listen.

Henry Kissinger's brother, Walter, was once asked how it was that he, who is one year older than Henry, spoke unaccented American English, while his brother still had a heavy Bavarian accent. His answer: Henry just doesn't listen.

http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/what-makes-a-foreign-minister-great-1.231409

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “He is one of the most important figures in international relations in the last century.”

We disagree. He has always been overrated.

AM said: “There is no need to take at face value anything he says, just important to read what he says.

No doubt about that:

“[Nixon] wants a massive bombing campaign in Cambodia. He doesn't want to hear anything about it. It's an order, to be done. Anything that flies or anything that moves.”

http://www.alternet.org/world/top-10-most-inhuman-henry-kissinger-quotes

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “But I am sure Hersh had quite a lot to say about the acquisition oil driving US policy in Vietnam? Can you cite where he shows that oil was the real/primary reason for US involvement in the war? You have read the book so it should require no Herculean effort to provide the page references. He could hardly have missed out on it.”

These are curious questions since I never claimed Seymour Hersh made that assertion.

I made that assertion and offered you citations to other sources that proved it.

Yet you cling to this glib notion that there were other more globally systemic forces or reasons for the US being in Southeast Asia from 1945 – 1975 because either Henry Kissinger said so or as you said, “…the wider system demands it”. I don’t believe Kissinger, and no one should, and I am not persuaded by your claim or citation to David Halberstam.

But for what it’s worth here is Mr. Hersh on Kissinger’s earlier connections to the Rockefellers:

In 1952, Kissinger was named a consultant to the director of the Psychological Strategy Board, an operating arm of the National Security Council for covert psychological and paramilitary operations. In 1954, President Eisenhower appointed Nelson Rockefeller as his special assistant in charge of Cold War planning, a position that involved monitoring and approval of covert CIA operations. These were the days of CIA successes in Iran, where the Shah was installed on the throne, and in Guatemala, where the government of Jacobo Arbenz, considered to be anti-American and anti-business, was overthrown. In 1955, Kissinger, already known to insiders for his closeness to Rockefeller and for Rockefeller’s reliance on him, was named a consultant to the Operations Coordinating Board, the highest policy-making board for implementing clandestine activity against foreign governments.
---------------------------------------
By 1956, Kissinger was at work as director of the Special Studies Project for the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Inc., in New York.

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1982/12/the-price-of-power/376309/


And for the benefit of readers here who may not know:

The Rockefellers founded, owned and controlled Standard Oil which became in time ESSO (phonic for S.O.) and then EXXON. They also owned and controlled Chase Manhattan Bank among many other places and things. They were for the longest time, if not still, the richest family in the U.S. for over the last 100 years. They have given us The Federal Reserve, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Tri-lateral Commission, etc. And you don’t get to be US Secretary of State post WWII unless you are or were a member of CFR and TLC. Even Donald Trump’s current Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is the former CEO of EXXON. And no, the Rockefeller’s are not Jewish, they are conservative Baptists who are originally from the Binghamton, New York area and Cleveland, Ohio.

Owen Sullivan said...

Speaking of the realist school of international relations check out this short video as an aide of sorts as proof that it isn’t me alone who has this sort of opinion about the US as the dominating global hegemon for its own self-aggrandizing corporate ends:

Chomsky explains Cold War in 5 min

“The US has created the image of the Soviet threat to justify intervention and aggression in our own domains.”

“Anyone who believes a nation state’s promises is out of their minds.”

“States follow their promises if it’s in their interests to do so.”

“The United States set forth on a policy of global domination.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9Z05xyGB0c

Chomsky’s observations here can also apply to a realist analysis of England-in-Ireland relations. England is in Ireland for it's own self-interest and will continue to stay there if they want to no matter their earlier promises.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “With you looking increasingly like the emperor. Mere puffery works as long as you don't set out to try and prove it.”

Says the man who cites David Halberstam as “proof” of what the DOD thought about Vietnam.

Note too that his book was published after “The Pentagon Papers”, a much better book on what the DOD really thought about Vietnam which is why the US government tried to prevent its publication in civil litigation and criminally prosecuted (albeit unsuccessfully) its authors (former RAND Corporation employees) Daniel Ellsberg and Anthony Russo. President Nixon also ordered his White House Plumbers Team to burglarize the office of Daniel Ellsberg’s Psychiatrist in an effort to publicly smear Ellsberg as mentally ill.

OS said: “The Brits are still in Ireland. As predicted by British Rear Admiral Sloan in 1997 that they would be.

AM said: “But not for the reasons he seems to have believed.”

His reasons were British national self-interests.

Peer review?

Go read his book and do your own review.

I think you’ll find that Sloan, like Kissinger, emphasizes his own country’s national primacy.

OS said: “Now for comparison sake recall Gerry Adams claiming a united Ireland by 2016.”

AM said: “Apples and pears. We know Adams was spoofing for political career reasons.”

Right, one simply told the truth about the lie while the other lied about the truth.

Owen Sullivan said...

OS said: “Then why is the big elephant in the room still there?”

AM said: “Nature of politics in the modern world.”

And how is that any different from the nature of politics in the world before?

Are US aircraft carriers all that different in purpose than British gun boats were?

AM said: “Same reason they are still in Wolverhampton or Bradford. They calculate that in their self interest, not the unionists self interest, that it is better to stick with the consent principal than abandon it.

You mean because Northern Ireland is as British as Finchley?

Then why don’t they also stick with the consent principal for Wolverhampton or Bradford?

Where’s their “Good Friday Agreement”? And why doesn’t the Irish government have anything to say in what goes on in those English cities?

AM said: “I know nothing about the Puerto Rican situation…”

Spoils of war, a stolen colony given home rule much like N.I.

AM said: “…but implicit in what you say is that they have no self interest in those countries where they do not territorial acquiesce. Few believe that.”

I never said or implied that.

The US does have a self interest in Puerto Rico.

That’s why they stole it from the Spanish and it’s why they still own and occupy the place.

Like any hegemon the US will invade and occupy a place if that better serves their purpose.

Otherwise if they can control and access it from afar they will do that too.

And there in lay maybe a glimmer of hope for Ireland, for what that’s worth.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “As brutal as Kissinger was, he seemed to present a much more coherent argument for his power balance than you do against it.

His argument as always is a self-serving lie and a cover for his wealthy handlers.

But if you don’t like my argument then consider Howard Zinn’s:

Realism is seductive because once you have accepted the reasonable notion that you should base your actions on reality, you are too often led to accept, without much questioning, someone else's version of what that reality is. It is a crucial act of independent thinking to be skeptical of someone else's description of reality.

Machiavellian Realism and U.S. Foreign Policy: Means and Ends

By Howard Zinn, 1991, from the Zinn Reader

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article12349.htm


AM said: “Power politics has shaped our modern world.”

Indeed it has hence England in Ireland.

Plus ca change…

Owen Sullivan said...

OS said: “British Rear Admiral Sloane is part of the British State”

AM said: “As are the range of others who tell us something entirely different.

Of course they will tell you something different. That’s their policy.

That was Sloan’s point about “geo-political dualism”, a Kissingerian word if ever there was one.

Yet Sloane is supposed to be representative of the state position. Why?

What he writes about is verifiable because he provides the evidence for and he neatly explains British government actions and interests in Ireland much better than any Provisional Sinn Fein newspaper, circular or pamphlet does. It’s now 20 years since he wrote his book in 1997. His prescience easily exceeds any one else’s except for maybe Rory O’Brady or Marian Price.

Is there a peer review of his work? It doesn't exactly seem to have set the world alight.

You don’t need a weatherman to tell you which way the wind blows.

Review it yourself. Give it a go. Slay the beast, if you can.

Prove that Admiral Sloan got it wrong, that the Brits are telling the truth this time about their intentions, and that the world should pay no attention to this anomalous whistle blower.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The US had a domino theory perspective before Kissinger.”

Yes, it was called: the only good Indian is a dead Indian.

And they fell like dominoes.

AM said: “The US view of the threat to global capitalism was very real, not paranoia.”

Only liars and nuts say this.

When I was in the Army then President Ronald Reagan gave a press conference:

With three (anti-Sandinista) rebel leaders (from Nicaragua) at his side, Reagan told a group of conservative supporters in the Cabinet Room that defeat for the guerrillas--the so-called contras-- would create "a privileged sanctuary for terrorists and subversives just two days' driving time from Harlingen, Texas."

http://articles.latimes.com/1986-03-04/news/mn-15033_1_contra-aid

We laughed loudly and slept soundly that night in the barracks.

Because we all knew the threat to global capitalism was not very real at all.

Texas is after all one of the most gun happy places in the world.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “And it responded in capital's interest to curb that threat.”

The US government is indistinguishable from capital’s interest.

They are one and the same.

OS said: “That the British are in Ireland for their own interests shouldn’t be hard to comprehend.”

AM said: “Tell us what that interest is. It is not because they need the territory.”

Says you, but according to Admiral Sloan it’s geopolitical, historical and economic.

In short he says they do need and want the territory and so will keep it indefinitely.

And in so doing will continue to utter sweet lies for the natives’ aspirations sake.

Those of us around long enough to remember John Biggs Davison knew what a Colonel Blimp type character he was. The Monday Club was a right wing pressure group that only ever had a minority of Tory MPs in it, managed to get half a dozen ministers in it around the early 70s (i think) when Heath was in power. It took the likes of Bill Craig over to London so he could rant about shoot to kill but lost out when it came to the big policy decisions.

I don’t doubt that he was a cartoon but you did say he was “… wholly unrepresentative” of Tory policy and opinion when in fact he didn’t’ stand alone or with only just a half dozen members:

By 1971, the club had 35 MPs, six of them ministers, and 35 peers, with membership (including branches) totalling about 10,000. In 1982, the constitution was re-written, with more emphasis on support for the Conservative Party, but subsequent in-fighting over the club’s ‘hard right’ agenda led to many resignations. In 2001, the Conservatives formally severed relations with the club, which has ceased to exercise significant influence, with full membership below 600.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservative_Monday_Club


OS said: “Repartition is just a reconfiguration of British occupation and rule in Ireland.”

AM said: “Absolutely, but she was not getting rid of the part considered to have no strategic value and retaining the part that had. Her calculations were made on different factors.”

What factors were those? Because as you know repartition didn't happen, yet.

Owen Sullivan said...

AM said: “The British would leave Ireland in the event of a referendum in the North favouring that.The logic inherent in the totality of their position leads me to be fairly certain of it.”

The logic inherent in the totality of their position leads me to believe you’re all being played like the colonials you all are. Because besides Sloan’s very reasonable explanation of geopolitical dualisms (i.e. Brit State lies to cover up their ulterior motives), part of the totality of their position must per logic include the fact that they are still here even after the GFA vote in 1998 just as Sloan predicted they would be. They haven’t even permitted a vote on unity, lending proof to the dictum that if elections mattered they’d be outlawed. But like you say even if they had a vote Irish nationalists would likely lose because of the imperial gerrymandered logic that’s also inherent in the totality of their position which for now and as far as we can see is going to be the usual British inertia on matters and things in Ireland.

AM said: “They don't need the territory”

I know and they can’t wait to get the hell out of there. Well, that’s what they say anyway. Could be though they just want the territory nevertheless because as usual might makes right.

AM said: “…and would no longer feel obligated to abide by the consent principle, which they have elevated into a serious diplomatic asset, doing exactly what the Brits do in these matters in pursuit of their own interests.

This is doublespeak! The consent principal is their imperial gerrymander which like all gerrymanders ensures a certain electoral outcome. That’s the point. So yes, they do support it and will until they won’t. How colonial natives vote one way or another is completely superfluous since the Brits can leave even if everyone wants them to stay.

AM said: “But if people think they are really in Ireland for the potato crop then that sort of power politics explanation is not going to appeal to them.

That’s cute, but it won’t be the potatoes that necessarily appeals to them:

The Corrib Field is between 6-11TCF (trillion cubic feet the equivalent of well 1.4 billion barrels of oil)

http://www.indymedia.ie/article/81708?userlanguage=ga&save_prefs=true

British exploration company Europa Oil and Gas has started the search for a partner company to help develop one of its “riskier” assets in Irish waters.

http://www.irishexaminer.com/business/europa-oil-and-gas-firm-talks-up-irish-assets-as-prices-slip-below-50-417238.html

LONDON -- Europa Oil & Gas, UK and Ireland focused exploration, development and production company, is pleased to announce that it has signed a farm-out agreement (FOA) with a wholly owned subsidiary of leading operator Cairn Energy PLC Group in relation to a 70% interest in and operatorship of Licensing Option 16/19. Europa will retain a 30% interest in the licence, which is located on the western flank of the South Porcupine basin, offshore Ireland.

http://www.worldoil.com/news/2017/3/9/europa-oil-gas-and-cairn-energy-announce-offshore-ireland-farm-out

AM said...

Owen,

US foreign policy hasn’t changed since the Plains Indian Wars.

A Cowboys and Indians view of the world in which nuclear weaponry, the USSR and the PRC did not exist and as such Foreign Policy did not have to be recalibrated to take account of it.

It’s always been about profiteering and racketeering for a few

It is a question of how policy takes form to achieve that goal which is at the source of this exchange, not the contention itself.

War often is a racket and racketeers emerge in every war. But then capitalism is pretty much a racket.

Yet as the Soviets demonstrated war was a necessary means of survival against the Nazis.


https://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/warisaracket.html

AM said...

Owen,

Fred Landis really means nobody ever suggested it to him.

I doubt his fellow activists were keeping the most important reason the US went to war (for what you claim was the oil in Vietnam) a secret. Why would they. But it seems everybody was keeping it a secret, even Sy Hersh.

Vietnam Vets I served with told me they saw off-shore oil platforms when flying in and out of Vietnam.

You would hardly need to rely on a few army buddies for that. If they were so visible they would have been captured on camera all the time. I guess those accounts must feature in the oral histories of the war unless the soldiers who saw these things were in on the secret also. They must also have seen rice fields but that demonstrates the existence of rice not a US intent to go to war for rice.

And while not on par with Middle East oil drilling, Vietnamese oil production potential was no secret.

Go back and read the piece you referenced

It ventures the opinion that oil also appears to be assuming greater importance in the formation of overall war policy for Southeast Asia.

This is 1971 not 1951 or 1961 and oil was only now assuming greater importance in policy formulation. But America had been in Vietnam for years by this stage. The author merely suggests that oil was targeted by the US in Laos for destruction not absorption.

The US were bombing the Ho Chi Minh Trail in a number of countries to prevent oil getting to the military opposing them. Makes military sense. Chomsky felt that “unlike Viet Nam, Indonesia was very rich in resources”.

It might make more sense to say that the US had an interest in Vietnam because of the resources of the countries approximating it and the need to keep markets open and access to resources. But that would give rise to a more systemic explanation which you do not brook: so the US were after Vietnamese oil and that is why they went to war.

No conspiracy as much as just a coincidence of elite interests.

Show cause not coincidence.

So US foreign policy, not surprisingly, since at least 1900 (soon after the British Navy changed from coal firing to oil firing ships) has always been about oil and as always controlling foreign markets.

In the second article you cite
which verifies what those Vietnam vets told me. tells us that the very beginning of the oil was in 1968, years after the US had started the war.

Here is a more informative piece
on the history of oil and gas production

But try Chomsky:

A prestigious study group twenty years ago identified the primary threat of “communism” as the economic transformation of the communist powers “in ways which reduce their willingness and ability to complement the industrial economies of the West.” The American effort to contain this threat in Indochina was blunted

The concluding line is self-explanatory.

Simon said...

AM, your part about the oil beginning years after the US started the war made me want to comment.

Nick Turse points out in 'Kill Anything That Moves' that by 1953 the US funded nearly 80% of the French bill for their war in Vietnam. The fortune the French made in Vietnam was from white gold ie. Their colonists' rubber plantations.

This rubber industry was the oil industry of the day and supports Owen's theory of invading to exploit natural resources. However, since the military advisors and money from the US was in place long before the French left and long before oil overtook the rubber industry, oil is unlikely to have been the sole or even prominent reason for invasion.

AM said...

Simon,

it is a widely cited figure of the US providing 80% and I think I read somewhere that they armed 350,0000 French troops. There is no doubt the French treated it as a colony in much the same way the Belgians treated the Congo. It was very much a resource war for the French as they wanted what Vietnam had. The US had a different reason but a no less selfish one and were even more vicious than the French in my view.

Haven't read Turse yet but I recall your excellent review of it about 3 years ago.

Simon said...

AM, During the age of Empires and Colonies resources were very much the reason for invasion, genocide and puppet leaders. Rubber was a valuable incentive for the French. A reason for maintaining a colony but they bit off more than they could chew.

However, it is easy to look at current affairs when judging history and let hindsight carry us away. We can't judge history from the perspective of today without balancing it with contemporary reports and the mindset of the main players of the time. We might see oil as a reason for War in the Middle East today and think sure that was the reason for the War in Vietnam but we need to balance that theory with what was acknowledged at the time by writers, commentators participants and politicians. Otherwise we can place too much emphasis on current affairs and not enough on the affairs of that time.

We can be blinded by current practice.

Owen is correct in that resources always play a part in any decision-making. However, if oil was a prominent factor at the time, like it is today it would be more widely accepted by analysts as a reason for the War. Oil used to be cheap. Communism was the main Western preoccupation. Since Communism isn't a factor today it is easy not to look at it as a factor then. It was a real fear back then, albeit a paranoid one, just look at the McCarthey Trials.

Thanks for your kind words on the review. It is an excellent book.

AM said...

AM said: “I think the question most people will ask is how do you alone (with the exception of some conspiracy sites) know that the war was fought for oil?”

Most people?

How would you know this?


I said I think. But if Ken Ham says he knows that dinosaurs and humans roamed the world side by side 6000 years ago, we can make a fairly precise prediction as to what way most people will respond.

Me alone?

Read this 1971 article from Harvard University’s publication “The Crimson”:

Southeast Asian Resources The Oil Beneath Indochina
By BARRY WEISBERG, March 17, 1971


You plus a student (presumably) writing in a student publication in 1971. And the student offers no support for your contention that the US involvement in Vietnam was above all else for the country’s oil.

It doesn’t add up.

AM said...

Simon,

absolutely. We should not be blinded by current practices or try to see strategy as timeless and ahistoric.

The US is the primus inter pares among resource grabbing entities. Part of its self assigned remit was the protection of the goose from which the eggs could be stolen. That goose was much wider than Vietnam. Countries were not considered fair game merely for their resources but as pawns in a global chess game. I suppose this is what makes the US behaviour in Vietnam all the more cynical.

Conspiracy theories, whether about Vietnam or Martin McGuinness, stand in the way of a better understanding. They amount to caricature analysis where the most obscure speck or person is magnified and amplified beyond recognition.

AM said...

Owen,

FYI - the websites on point (it looks like I missed posting some of them earlier here)

Perhaps. But it looks more like you trawled the net for anything that might help flog a dead horse. The sites themselves don’t tell us anything to support the view that the primary reason the US went to war in Vietnam was to steal its oil. From where I sit it still looks very much like another conspiracy theory which even very few conspiracy theorists seem to endorse.
You mean: The Best and the Brightest (1972) which is an account by journalist David Halberstam of the origins of the Vietnam War published by Random House.
I do. Even had I read the book (we have it and Quagmire) I might still have got the title back to front.

No where in this book, or in any work published by the US Defense or State Departments, will you ever see the admission or observation that the US criminally and dishonestly invaded and occupied Vietnam for its very own selfish ends.
Not having read the book I don’t know. I cut corners by getting the synopsis. Not ideal but ...
There is no doubt that the US was in Vietnam “for its very own selfish ends”. There is no disagreement on this point. It is what constitutes the selfish ends. You claim oil. I suggest wider systemic reasons.
Halberstam seems to have focussed on Kennedy to the exclusion of much else. DiEugenio (seemingly brilliant review despite not having the time to read it in full) seems to want the blame placed more on Nixon. Fine. Nixon was atrocious. Was Halberstam wrong for lambasting Kennedy? Not in my view. Halberstam managed, in a way that the Rear Admiral didn’t, to prompt interest in what he wrote. Which makes it easy to find peer reviews, more of them positive than critical. But I prefer critical reviews. There is more to be learned from them. Unfortunately McCarthy’s is behind a paywall.
My point about Halberstam is that he criticises Kennedy for making decisions, not one of which related to being in Vietnam to get the oil. Was he right to criticise Kennedy? Totally. Was he right in his criticisms of Kennedy? That’s something else.
In DiEugenio’s extended review he doesn’t mention the oil either and why Halberstam missed out on the most important reason, in your view, for US involvement in Vietnam. Are they all in on this conspiracy to hide the oil factor from us?

AM said...

The US government, which is and always has been a creature of great incorporated family fortunes, doesn’t do anything it doesn’t want to do no matter who else demands it.

That is an appetite drives policy view of the world in which system doesn't amount to anything. Poulantzas and Milliband debated this type of issue in the late 60s early 70s with Poulantzas demonstrably bringing out the weakness in the appetite driven position of Milliband.

And I can’t think of any examples of the US invading a country that didn’t have some resource or perceived strategic value worth taking or dominating.

AM said: “A more important question is do countries need territorial acquisition to do this? The answer would seem to be a resounding no.

Agreed.


At last.


What wider system is demanding that the US occupy Guantanamo or Puerto Rico?

I don't know. I am not familiar with the literature. But I doubt it is cigars.

But US foreign policy before WWII was also driven by containment and preserving the widest possible free market areas for US businesses.

But you seemed to suggest earlier that this was a myth put out by the US and that in fact they went into countries for the particular resources of the targeted country, not for any wider reason.

None of this tells us anything about the US primarily going to war in Vietnam for oil.

AM said...

AM said: “Perhaps the greatest regional power play of all was US foreign policy in respect of playing off the Soviets against the Chinese.” This is standard American academic speak.

Read the history from a much wider range of writers than US academics.
Whether we agree or not it is indisputable that there is much more support for the view about the power balance than there is for the US waged war mainly to get Vietnamese oil. In fact there is so little to support the oil thesis that the assertion ends up looking like standard conspiracy theorist speak.

A Chinese fellow once told me that it was China through the strategic brilliance of Mao and Chou that played the US off against the USSR by keeping up the pretense that Communism was monolithic when in fact it was not. They played Nixon and Kissinger for dupes.

An interesting theory which does nothing for your argument and quite a lot for the strategic balance you think didn’t factor. Much like the thoughts of the Admiral, if credible I am sure we will find it reflected, discussed and critiqued in the literature. If not we will find it in the conspiracy theories.

Who can forget that it was Kissinger who successfully advised Nixon to side with the military dictatorship in Pakistan versus the free market democracy in India during the war there in 1970-1971?

You would imagine that by this point you would see that this confirms the strategic balance. The US strongly suspected the Indians of being backed by the Soviets. The Pakistanis were a useful pawn on the wider board. How did Kissinger persuade Nixon? He only had to mention that it would curb the Soviets. Henry was not the most fervent admirer of democracy or upfront strategies. Protecting the wider strategic balance and the global range of US capitalism was of more importance to him than admiring the free market democracy of India.

Allow me to quote Jussi Hanhimaki from his book The Flawed Architect.

Kissinger’s response to the Indo-Pakistani-Bengali crisis shows how clearly his grand design – triangular diplomacy and détente - fit with the realities of regional development in South Asia. Viewing the respective politics of India and Pakistan through the spectacles of Sino-Soviet-American triangulation, Kissinger managed to associate the United States with the eventual loser in the conflict (Pakistan). Between July and December 1971, despite voluminous advice to the contrary from the State Department experts Kissinger, apparently, saw only one reality. India was a friend of the Soviet Union; Pakistan a friend of China’s. The United States needed to side with Pakistan in order to safeguard the opening to China without which it was clear Kissinger’s architecture was bound to collapse. Sadly all this amounted to a false reading of South Asian realities in 1971

AM said...

Owen,

Bases - they weren’t building them just for the sunny beaches.
Nor to find Vietnamese oil underneath Berlin.


That’s what Henry Kissinger even says about himself.

As do lots of others including those who despise him.

But ever notice how he never sides with left wing or political progressives in the US?

Why would he? Have you ever noticed Westboro Baptist Church side with gays? He despises the left and progressives; not just in the US. But we both know that anyway.

As such his ideology drives his so called world view.

His realist ideology which is all about power and security: the projection of US power onto the world stage.

he is notorious as a man who doesn’t listen.

That invites a very interesting question: what was it that he was not listening to? You claim that the US were in Vietnam primarily for the oil. His policies were not winning the war and were ultimately going to lead to a withdrawal from Vietnam. Given that he was a threat to the main reason the US was in Vietnam (according to you) was oil, he must have refused to listen to all those voices that were saying “Henry halt. You are ruining our oil grabbing policy.” But where do we find that in any of the records? It is inconceivable that he was not told it; that nobody mentioned the detrimental impact on a vital US interest.

Was he one of the most significant world figures of the last century?

Without doubt.

We disagree. He has always been overrated.

He has been underrated. This guy is arguably the most proficient war criminal of the last century (and that is some achievement given the Nazi competition). Despite the work of Hitchens and Hersh the magnitude of his criminality in my view has been vastly and unpardonably understated.

These are curious questions since I never claimed Seymour Hersh made that assertion.

No, you most definitely did not. And I I wondered why not. Because here is a man hammering Kissinger for all his dishonest behaviour yet you don’t think it strange that in uncovering the real US position in Vietnam (the greatest lie of all arguably) Hersh forgot to mention oil.

I made that assertion and offered you citations to other sources that proved it.

Unfortunately, you proved nothing of the sort. What you demonstrated was that you had no proof and for whatever reason fell prey to a conspiracy theory which rather than abandoning and moving on, you dug deeper and deeper into the hole.

Yet you cling to this glib notion that there were other more globally systemic forces or reasons for the US being in Southeast Asia from 1945 – 1975 because either Henry Kissinger said so or as you said, “…the wider system demands it”.

Not because Henry Kissinger said so. Read the voluminous literature on why the US were there. Compare and contrast it with the literature on the oil theory.

I don’t believe Kissinger, and no one should

When there is no evidence to back up what he says I don’t believe him either for obvious reasons. I believe others.

AM said...

Owen,

I am not persuaded by your claim or citation to David Halberstam.

So he did not lambast the Kennedy Administration for a plethora of policy mistakes and miscalculations based on this type of thinking in relation to the growth of communism.

It is a matter of record that he did. Not a matter of my opinion. He was not alone in this type of criticism.

But for what it’s worth here is Mr. Hersh on Kissinger’s earlier connections to the Rockefellers:

It is not worth anything because it tells us absolutely nothing about the reasons the US went to war in Vietnam. You draw an inference supported by no evidence.


And for the benefit of readers here who may not know

Outcome – they still don’t know from any of this that the US was in Vietnam primarily for its oil not the country’s misfortune to occupy a square in the strategic power board.

Speaking of the realist school of international relations check out this short video as an aide of sorts as proof that it isn’t me alone who has this sort of opinion about the US as the dominating global hegemon for its own self-aggrandizing corporate ends:

That was the argument I made to you and which you rejected in favour of the oil thesis. No one has yet said you alone are of the view that the US strives to preserve its role as the dominating global hegemon. There seems strong agreement on this. The point made against you was that they did not wage the war in Vietnam to get Vietnams oil but to ensure that their position as the dominant global hegemon remained unchecked. They wanted to preserve the system that best allowed that.

The system guarding imperative McEwan referred to was the US acting as global capitalist hegemon and not mere nation state, was striving to preserve the system that would ensure the continuation of free market politics and the profit that flowed from the world economy. So even if the US had no visible assets in Vietnam that it was trying to extract, it had a very selfish reason for being there.

Chomsky explains Cold War in 5 min

Chomsky is right. But again tells us nothing about Vietnamese oil being the cause of the war.

Chomsky’s observations here can also apply to a realist analysis of England-in-Ireland relations. England is in Ireland for it's own self-interest and will continue to stay there if they want to no matter their earlier promises.

But isn’t this the problem? There is no reason for British interests to be threatened in the wake of a withdrawal. Who is going to threaten them?

AM said...

Says the man who cites David Halberstam as “proof” of what the DOD thought about Vietnam.

Says the man who could only cite a student to show the US waged war in Vietnam to get oil.

“The Pentagon Papers”, a much better book on what the DOD really thought about Vietnam

And what it “really” thought was the oil. Cite the pages where it outlines this.

Go read his book and do your own review.

Given your ability to pull out other reviews, I can only surmise there are none that you could find on this. That would seem bizarre to cite work that seems to have made zero impact in terms of influence. How many reader reviews on Amazon? Maybe it is a long read but it has been out 20 years and no reviews.

Google Screaming Lord Sutch, and then google the Admiral. Seems Sutch captured more public interest.

The only people citing this guy online seems to be you – away back in a piece for the Blanket. If his ideas had the slightest purchase we would be able to read about them.

AM said: “…but implicit in what you say is that they have no self interest in those countries where they do not territorial acquiesce. Few believe that.”

I never said or implied that.


By implication if the USA has to be in countries to access resources then the countries they are not in have no resources the US wants. And if they do have the US has alternative means of getting them without territorial acquisition. Why would it therefore be any different for the British in Ireland.

Otherwise if they can control and access it from afar they will do that too.
And Britain can’t do that with Ireland? Why not?

AM said...

Owen,

Howard Zinn tells us nothing about realism that we did not already know. It is not called realism because it is a genuine or benign view of the world but because its practitioners see the world “as it is” and which requires management by power and security. Realism amounts to a very brutal application of a remorseless logic.

For Zinn to be of any value to you in this exchange you would need him to reinforce your central assertion re Vietnam: the US war was fought for oil. The more you cite people like Zinn, Chomsky, Hersh, the more you invite the obvious question – how did they fail to mention oil as being the real reason for going into Vietnam?
On no one seemingly endorsing Sloan:

Of course they will tell you something different. That’s their policy.

So the mass of people who see no merit or substance in the Sloan perspective are all involved in a policy?

What he writes about is verifiable because he provides the evidence for and he neatly explains British government actions and interests in Ireland much better than any Provisional Sinn Fein newspaper, circular or pamphlet does.

Ken Ham’s followers say much the same about his books. And there are people who believe Ham that would seem to believe the Admiral. Sloan He verified it for you but you might set the bar low in terms of what satisfies your evidential requirements. Marian Price and Ruairi O’Bradaigh are at least people others have heard of and can find something about. They have been cited and we have evidence that they influenced people. Not so with Sloan.

You must see how this all looks like a conspiracy theory. You and the Admiral (and there are more people in Ireland that have probably heard of you or read you than know or have read the Admiral) know the real reason the British are in Ireland and why they will not leave; you and the student from 1971 know the real reason the US waged war in Vietnam.

Everybody else apparently has missed out on this. Seriously what are the chances of that happening?

You don’t need a weatherman to tell you which way the wind blows. Review it yourself. Give it a go. Slay the beast, if you can.

I will do it at the same time as I review The Lie: Evolution by Ken Ham. I don't think I am in a rush.

Prove that Admiral Sloan got it wrong, that the Brits are telling the truth this time about their intentions, and that the world should pay no attention to this anomalous whistle blower.

It is not a question of whether the world should pay no attention to the Admiral: the world id paying no attention to him. Whistleblower? Is he really that much in need of some cover>

Only liars and nuts say this.

Standard fare for conspiracy theorists when people don’t buy into their conspiracy theories.

And only the sane and honest people believe the US war in Vietnam was oil driven?

AM said...

The Admiral says they do need and want the territory and so will keep it indefinitely.

He might also think the world was created 6000 years ago. Ken Ham, ridiculous as he is, can marshal more followers for his young earth perspective. The admiral has an opinion which is so far off the wall that nobody cites it other than yourself.

On John Biggs DavisonI don’t doubt that he was a cartoon

Why cite a cartoon in support of your view? You might now see what is meant by caricature analysis.

He wasn’t even representative of the Monday Club. Pretty much a cartoon there as well.

What factors were those? Because as you know repartition didn't happen, yet.
She didn’t need to.

The logic inherent in the totality of their position leads me to believe you’re all being played like the colonials you all are.
More conspiracy theory stuff. Everybody is a colonial now and only you can see it.

The Corrib Field is between 6-11TCF (trillion cubic feet the equivalent of well 1.4 billion barrels of oil)

They are in Ireland for the oil as well. I still think it is the potatoes they want and they are masking it by Corrib.

I’ve covered all the points but see no point in revisiting unless you come up with something other than these conspiracy theories. Whether they are about McGuinness, the Vietnam War or the opinion of the Admiral, the one thing in common to them all is that they have little traction.