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An Obituary for the Republic

An Obituary for the Republic

What dreamers they were! They imagined a kind of global power that would leave even Rome at its Augustan height in the shade. They imagined a world made for one, a planet that could be swallowed by a single great power. No, not just great, but beyond anything ever seen before -- one that would build (as its National Security Strategy put it in 2002) a military “beyond challenge.” Let’s be clear on that: no future power, or even bloc of powers, would ever be allowed to challenge it again.

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
–George Santayana

Those who can remember the past are condemned to repeat it with eyes wide open.


An obituary for a token Republic, a dysfunctional Republic or even an empire masquerading as a republic, but the obituary was written long before Trump came to power. Never forget for a moment that a fully a third of the public supports Trump’s wall and many in the group would gladly cede there constitutional rights and support an authoritarian who promotes their racist, hateful, sexist, fundamentalist Christian, anti-LGBT, xenophobic views. Witness the fact that after two years of Trump’s filth, Trump has no problem filling the stands with his eager fans at his rallies. Be very afraid, my friends.


Those who cannot remember their past, or their history, are condemned.

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Another brilliant Tom Englehardt essay. Thanks!


A million years from now, when humans have exited evolution, and apes have assumed the mantle of biological evolution-with their neocortex squared brains, they’ll tell tales of a great myths and the men and women who once held the highest echelons of power, and they’ll laugh and cry…that such animals once lived…right alongside them.

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Trump’s been like Rumsfeld. HIS GENIUS would streamline things, and miracles would happen. We should know by now about Trump’s ultimate faith in his own ultimate savy he gets from watching TV. He was going to “bomb the shit out of ISIS,” and the US and Russia then did do that. And then Americans found out Iranians helped out the program on the ground where it counts a lot. To top that off Americans then found out the neocons all the while had watered down the whole mission with a side thing about removing Assad. Anyway, why now is Turkey saying hold off on rubble-izing Idlib? Well, Erdogan says to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe. That may not be the true reason, but it plays well. It plays well because it is a good reason, and then there are the refugees. Russia was gung ho to rubble-ize Idlib, but for now they’re holding off along with Turkey’s wishes [why, because the pipeline has to go through the latter country + the catastrophe? who knows?]. But Russia does have enough sense to take a stand regarding Turkey’s plans for the “safe zone.”

It just goes to show factors materialize that force nations to put off smashing whole cities. The forces in the region that want ISIS gone for good aren’t [minus a couple] gung ho about any war on Iran…thus, Trump wanted out of the neocons’ general approach (Pompeo, Bolton, and Giuliani may bring it back though). Time for another distraction. This time we will steal the poop out of Venezuela’s oil. This time it’s those evil folks down south. And we’ll let them stay imprisoned in old Mexican malquiladora factories…without enough clothes, or any medicine at all.

There was a better way all along. Boy, I missed this one. And all along I could have found it if I’d just searched the phrases and words I searched this evening. But all of us knew about ISIS’ oil going through Turkey.

Next, use whatever diplomatic and economic pressure is available to make it clear to whomever in Turkey that it’s time to stop facilitating the flow of that ISIS oil onto the black market. Then wield that same diplomatic and economic pressure to force buyers to stop purchasing it. Some reports suggest that Israel, cut off from most Arab sources of oil, has become a major buyer of ISIS’s supplies. If so, step on some allied toes. C’mon, someone is buying all that black-market black gold.

The same should go for Turkey’s behavior toward ISIS. That would extend from its determination to fight Kurdish forces fighting ISIS to the way it’s allowed jihadis to enter Syria through its territory to the way it’s funneled arms to various extreme Islamic groups in that country. Engage Turkey’s fellow NATO members. Let them do some of the heavy lifting. They have a dog in this fight, too. https://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/01/18/you-wont-it-heres-answer-isis Jan 2016

Wagging dogs is how fascism works.

It wants the area near the Turkish border to be cleared of the U.S.-backed Kurdish YPG militia and to move into territory there, some of which is currently controlled by U.S. forces.

Earlier on Thursday, Russia told Turkey it had no right to create such a safe zone unless it sought and received the consent of Assad. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-russia-turkey-iran-idUSKCN1Q31JC 2/14/19

Let’s not give in before we have had our revolution.

Oh there will be a revolution eventually. The question is whether it will be a non-violent or violent one.

Please stop repeating the fairy tale of 911. This home grown OP was designed to excuse the rape of the planet. Ever since 11/22/63, PEACE was never the objective. Wars for $$$ and profits for the in crowd was always the goal. The security state will keep the hoi polloi in line.


Agree completely: Tom has again succinctly hit the nail on the head - always a good read!

I wonder how people revolt when the MIMIC has won the hearts and minds of a significant percentage of them. We here hope for change, but how will it come; through peaceful operation of the constitutional system of violent revolt? As Tom posits, we are too far down the road. He has such insight and capacity to summarize how dire the situation is. I can’t overrule him. So what will we do?

Dang. That was so good I had to re-post it!

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Engelhardt never misses an opportunity.