By M.S.N. Menon
American Presidents are a varied lot. Some were born to wealth, some to poverty; some had education, most had none. Few were really great; most were plain disasters.
Their preoccupations, too, have been varied over the years?from George Washington'sunremitting exertion to mate an unwilling Spanish jackass with an American mare to Bush'sworry?how to fight terrorism with Musharraf for a mate.
And between the two of them, we have had both the absurd and the malignant (Nixon), and no doubt the hilarious ones, too, all telling one single tale of the great trek of the American wagon train to the wild west, to global supremacy and to the great unknown.
Today the wagon train is hitched to the fight against terrorism. It could take America and the world to ruin and disaster, if America is not serious enough?you can'tfight religious bigotry with Bush'sdilettantism.
Supreme power over the world for all times to come?this is what the American dream is all about. But America wants it on the cheap by paying less and less. How? By distracting the world, not letting the world'smind to settle on a single goal, on a single thought, which is not approved by America. And the best way to distract man is by playing on their religion, on sex and violence. In short, America tries to keep the world in a state of fever, fear and flux.
Churn up the world into a whirlpool of distracting passions, so goes the American recipe for world dominance. Let the world'speoples be sucked into this maelstrom. In this way, American strategists say, men can be kept out of mischief against America. It is a cold-blooded calculation.
But distractions are not enough. There must be big bangs too, as in Iraq. But who will pay for the bangs? Why, those who benefit from pax Americana. There are millions who profit from pax Americana all over the world. Each must fight America'sbattle for hegemony. For globalisation. And pay a fair share for their profit and prosperity.
I ask our Indian defence experts: Have you thought of world domination as a business enterprise? As a game of profit and less? Perhaps not. Then, you must learn how it is done by Uncle Sam. He knows best. He fights his battles on different fronts. Each front is important. There is the political front, military front, economic front, religious front, cultural front, information front and so on. ?Carrot and stick? is central to all?sweet talks and severe ways.
Each front calls for shrewd investments. Returns are enormous. And losses too. How to balance the two, leaving a substantial profit?this is the work of the best brains that America commands from the world. It serves Indian interests, too, for we have only brains to sell today.
I do not think that the world is ready to experiment with new ideologies. We haven'tforgotten the fate of communism. In any case, America will oppose it, distract it, confuse it and confound it. In fact, America wants the world to stay put where it is, rooted in its fear. Status quo??that is what the ?haves? want.
America makes much ado of the ?free world?, of ?democracy? and ?human rights?. But these are magical incantations like ?open seasame? to gain entry into countries, to force them accept American ways.
It is easy to dominate the world, for the rulers of the world are not an intelligent lot. Most of them have no mandate to rule. True, they are clever. It has taken them thus far up the ladder. But they are susceptible, you can be sure, to the infirmities of rulers of all ages.
So, what is the ultimate game of Uncle Sam? He keeps the world guessing?that is the greatest game of all. Has he not kept us Indians guessing all these years? And he keeps the world in a state of flux. And men are but marionettes to him. He keeps manipulating them.
And he manipulates the global economy. The calculation is simple: if he can gain a marginal profit from each of his various enterprises, he would make his billions, for, as they say, many a drop will make the ocean. And if America is still not happy with the profit, it can always create an economic or financial crisis around the world to earn a few more billions.
How does it matter to America how it makes its investments to secure power over the world?by giving alms or arms, or through coups and assassinations? It is all the same. If by being friends with China, it can keep Russia at bay, it is indeed a wise investment. And so was it when it befriended Pakistan to checkmate India. Don'tsuch short-term gains in time lead to the long-term quest for American power over the world?
America knows that it can play this game for a long time, for it can find men and nations ready to play the American game. Thus has America raised the permutations of its opportunities! Indians, O credulous Indians, study the vast and unfathomable mind of America if you want to work with it. And work we must now whether we like it or not.