Scenario ONE: Imagine that you are on board a ship, which is slowly sinking. There is no land in sight, and your radio transmitter is not functioning properly. There are several people on board and you care for them, deeply. You don’t want this to be the end of ‘everything’.
What do you do?
A) You fix for yourself a nice portion of fried rice with prawns
B) You turn on the TV set, which is still somehow miraculously working, and watch the news about the future Scottish referendum or on BREXIT
C) You jump into the water immediately, try to identify the damage, and then attempt to do something unthinkable with your simple tools and capabilities: to save the ship
Imagine another scenario:
SCENARIO TWO: By mistake, your wife eats two full tubes of sleeping pills, supposedly confusing them with anew line of candies. As you find her on the floor, she appears to be unconscious and her face looks rather bluish.
What would your course of action be?
A) After you realize that her high heels do not match the color of her pantyhose, you run to the closet in search of a much better pair of shoes to achieve the balance
B) You carry her without delay to the bathroom, pump out her stomach, and try to resuscitate her while calling the ambulance using the speakerphone function
C) You recall how you first met, get nostalgic, and rush to your living room library in order to find a book of love sonnets by Pablo Neruda, which you then recite to her kneeling on the carpet
Now brace yourself for a great surprise. Unless you choose C) for scenario one, and B) for scenario two, you can actually consider yourself absolutely “normal” by most North American and European standards.
However, if you opt for C) or B) respectively, you could easily pass off for an extremist, a radical and ideological left-wing fanatic.
The West has brought the world to the brink of total collapse, but its citizens, even its intellectuals, are stubbornly refusing to grasp the urgency. Like ostriches, many are hiding their heads in the sand. Others are behaving like a surgeon who opts for treating a small cut on a finger of his patient who is actually dying from a terrible gunshot wound.
There seems to be an acute lack of rational thinking, and especially of people’s ability to grasp the proportions of global occurrences and events. For years I have been arguing that destroying the ability to compare and to see things from the universal perspective has been one of the most successful endeavors of the Western indoctrination drive (dispersed through education, media/disinformation and ‘culture’). It has effectively influenced and pacified both, the people in the West itself, and those living in its present and former colonies (particularly the local ‘elites’and their offspring).
There seems to be no capacity to compare and consistently analyze, for instance, those certainly unsavory but mainly defensive actions taken by the revolutionary governments and countries, with the most horrid and appalling crimes committed by the colonialist regimes of the West all over Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa,which took place in approximately the same historical era.
It is not only history that is seen in the West through totally crooked and ‘out of focus’ lenses, it is also the present, which has been perceived and ‘analyzed’ in an out of context way and without applying hardly any rational comparisons. Rebellious and independent-minded countries in Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East (most of them have been actually forced to defend themselves against the extremely brutal attacks and subversion campaigns administered by the West) have been slammed, even in the so-called ‘progressive’ circles of the West, with much tougher standards than those that are being applied towards both Europe and North America, two parts of the world that have been continuously spreading terror, destruction and unimaginable suffering among the people inhabiting all corners of the globe.
Most crimes committed by the left-wing revolutions were in direct response to invasions, subversions, provocations and other attacks coming from the West. Almost all the most terrible crimes committed by the West were committed abroad, and were directed against enslaved, exploited, thoroughly plunderedand defenseless people in almost all parts of the world.
Now, according to many, the endgame is approaching. Rising oceans are swallowing entire countries, as I witnessed in several parts of Oceania. It is a horrid, indescribable sight!
People in numerous countries governed by pro-Western regimes are shedding millions of their inhabitants, while some nations are basically ceasing to exist, like Papua or Kashmir, to give just two obvious examples.
The environment is thoroughly ruined where the ‘lungs’ of the world used to work hard, just a few decades ago, making our planet healthy.
Tens of millions of people are now on the move, their countries thoroughly ruined by Western geopolitical games. Instead of influencing and helping to guide humanity, such great cultures as those of Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria are now forced to disgorge millions of desperate refugees. They are barely surviving, humiliated and hardly relevant.
Extremist religious groups (of all faiths, and definitely not only belonging to the Muslim religion) are being groomed by the Western Machiavellian ideologues and strategists, then dispersed to all corners of the globe: South Asia, the Middle East, China, Latin America, Africa, and even Oceania.
It is a total disgrace what imperialism has managed to reduce our humanity to.
Most of the world is actually trying to function ‘normally’, ‘democratically’, following its natural instincts, which are based on simple humanism. But it is being constantly derailed, attacked and tormented by the brutal monstrous and merciless hydra – the Western expansionism and its ‘culture’ or nihilism, greed, cynicism and slavery.
It is so obvious where we are going as a human race.
We want to fly, we want freedom and optimism and beauty to govern our lives. We want to dream and to create something deep, meaningful, happy and kind. But there are those horrible weights hanging from our feet. There are chains restraining our actions. There is constant fear, which is making us betray all our ideals, as well as each other, again and again; fear that makes us, humans,act like shameless cowards and egoists. As a result we are not flying, we are only crawling, and not even forward, but in bizarre, irrational ellipses and circles.
Still, I do not believe that the endgame is inevitable!
For many years I have been sending warnings, I have been writing and showing and presenting thousands of terrible images of destruction, of the irreversible collapse, of barbarity.
I have generally kept nothing to myself. I have recycled my work, my films and books, into new journeys into the darkest abysses of our world. I have received hardly any support from the outside world. But I couldn’t stop: what I have been witnessing, the danger to the planet and total devastation, have forced me to never give up the struggle. If necessary and most of the time, I have done it alone. I spent too much time in Latin America; I could not give up. I learned too much from Cuba and so many other wonderful places; I felt I had no right to surrender.
Whenever the horrors from which our planet is suffering would overwhelm me, I’d ‘collapse’, as I did last year. Then I’d bury myself somewhere for a short period of time, collect myself together, get up and continue with my work and my struggle. I have never ceased to trust people. Some would come full of initial enthusiasm, offering much, then betray me, and leave. Still, I have never lost faith in human beings. This year, instead of slowing down, I ‘adopted’ one more place,which is in agony – Afghanistan.
My only request, my only demand has been, that the world listens, that it sees, that it tries to comprehend, before it is too late. This request of mine has proven to be, I realize now, too ‘demanding’, and too ‘radical’.
Sometimes I ask: have I achieved much? Have I opened many eyes? Have I managed to build many bridges between the different struggling parts of the world? As an internationalist I have to question my own actions, my effectiveness.
I have to admit, honestly: I don’t know the answers to my own questions. But I keep working and struggling.
The world looks different if observed and analyzed from a pub in Europe or North America, or if you are actually standing on one of those atolls in the middle of the South Pacific (Oceania) that are under the constant assault of tidal waves, dotted with dead stumps of palm trees pointing accusatively towards the sky. These islets are at the forefront of the battle for the survival of our planet, and they are obviously losing.
Everything also appears to be much more urgent but also ‘real’, when observed from the black and desolate plains of the hopelessly logged out Indonesian islands of Borneo/Kalimantan and Sumatra.
I used to recount in my essays, just for my readers to know, what the villages somewhere like Gomain the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), look and feel like, after the murderous assaults by the pro-Rwandese, and therefore pro-Western, militias. It was important for me to explain how things are ‘right in the middle of it’, on the ground. I used to write about mass rapes and mutilations, about the burning flesh, terrible torture… I stopped some time ago. You at least once witness all this or you simply didn’t. If you did then you know what it all looks like, what it feels like and smells like… or you could never imagine it, no matter how many books and reports you read, no matter how many images you consume.
I have been trying to speak about all this to the people in the West, at conferences, universities, or even through my films and books. They do listen, mostly respectfully. They do show politely how outraged and ‘horrified’ they are (it is ‘expected’ of them). Some say: ‘I want to do something’. Most of them do absolutely nothing, but even if they decide to take action, it is usually for themselves,just to feel good, to feel better, to convince their own conscience that they have actually ‘done at least something for the humanity’.
I used to blame them. I don’t, anymore. This is how the world is arranged. However, I have sharply reduced my work-visits to both North America and Europe. I don’t feel that I click with the people in those places. We don’t think the same way, we don’t feel the same, and even our logic and rationale are diametrically different.
My recent three-week stay in Europe clearly revealed to me, how little there is in common between the West’s state of mind and the reality in which the great majority of the world has been living.
In the past, before the Western empires and the sole“Empire” took most of determination and enthusiasm away from the people, the most talented of human beings used to make no distinction between their personal lives, their creativity and their relentless work and duty towards humanity.
In several places including Cuba, it is how many people still live.
In the West, everyone and everything is now fragmented and life itself became objectively meaningless: there is distinct time to work (satisfying one’s personal career, guaranteeing survival, advancing ‘prestige’ and ego), there is time to play, and for family life… and there is occasionally time to think about humanity or, very rarely, about the survival of our planet.
Needless to say, this selfish approach has failed in helping to advance the world. It has also squarely failed when it comes to stopping at least some of the monstrosities committed by Western imperialism.
When I go to the opera house or some great classical music concert, it is in order to get some deep inspiration, to get fired up about my work, to recycle the beauty that I’m expressing in my novels and films, theatre plays and even political reports. I never go to get simply ‘entertained’. It is never for my own needs only.
It is also essential for me to work closely with the people that I love, including my own mother who is already 82 years old.
It is because I know there is absolutely no time to waste. And also because everything is and should be intertwined in life: love, work, duty, and the struggle for the survival and progress of our world.
I may be labeled as a fanatic, but I am decisively choosing those C) and B) options from the ‘dilemmas’ I depicted above.
I am choosing rationality, now that the US ‘armada’ packed with the nuclear weapons is sailing towards both China and North Korea, now that the Tomahawk missiles have rained down on Syria, now that the West will be sending thousands more mercenaries to one of the most devastated countries on Earth – Afghanistan.
Survival and then the advancement of the world should be our greatest goal. I believe it and I stand by it. In time of absolute crises, which we are experiencing right now, it is irresponsible, almost grotesque, to simply ‘continue to live our daily lives’.
Imperialism has to be stopped, once and for all, by all means. At the moment when the survival of humanity is at stake, the end justifies all means. Or as the motto of Chile goes: “By Reason Or By Force”.
Of course, if those ‘who know’ do not act, if they are cowardly and opportunistically do nothing, from a universal perspective, nothing much will happen: one small planet in one of the so many galaxies will simply cease to exist.Most likely there are many inhabited planets in the universe, many civilizations.
However, I happen to love this world and this particular Planet. I know it well, from the Southernmost tip all the way to the north. I know its deserts and valleys, mountains and oceans, its marvelous and touching creatures, its great cities as well as god-forsaken villages. I know its people. They have many faults; and much that could be condemned in them, and much that should be improved. But I still believe that there is more that could be admired in them than denounced.
Now it is time to think, rationally and quickly, and then to act. No small patches will do, no ‘feel good’ actions. Only a total reset, overhaul. Call it the Revolution if you will, or simply C) and B). No matter how you define it, it would have to come rapidly, very rapidly, or there soon will be nothing to love, to defend, and to work for, anymore.
Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are revolutionary novel “Aurora” and two bestselling works of political non-fiction: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire” and “Fighting Against Western Imperialism”. View his other books here. Andre is making films for teleSUR and Al-Mayadeen. Watch Rwanda Gambit, his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo. After having lived in Latin America, Africa and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter.