For those who labor under the misguided delusion that Europe defines its own destiny independently, no clearer wake up call could have been given than the latest US-French spying scandal. It is a wake up call not because of revelations that the United States has been spying on the French government, but because the French government, like its neighbor Germany who was also a victim of US spying, has predictably let the matter drop with no apparent repercussions for the perpetrators.
Time magazine, recognized widely as a mouthpiece of the US State Department, essentially gloated in its article, “Why the U.S.-France Spying Scandal Will Quickly Blow Over,” that European dependence on the US economically and militarily is so deep and unswerving, that no violation of Europe’s sovereignty could endanger “relations.” By relations, of course, Time means US primacy and European servility.
Time used words like “the free world” to describe what is essentially the Western World. However, one must strain to associate “freedom” with what is apparently a global power violating the privacy of every nation on the planet, including its own, closest allies.
Shameless Politicians, Shameless Business Community?
It is no secret that politics in the West is determined almost exclusively by special interests in industry and finance. Industry and finance underwrites and are the primary beneficiaries of most of the Western governments’ foreign and domestic policy. This is particularly the case when foreign military interventions are launched, and whether successful or not, bring these interests immense whirlwinds of wealth.
That the US was spying on European politicians is no surprise. This is to ensure those bent in servile obedience to Washington remain so. However, revelations regarding the spying scandal also reveal that European industries were also spied upon. Euronews’ article “WikiLeaks: NSA spied on French ministers and business too” reported:
The latest WikiLeaks report says the US National Security Agency spied more extensively on top French officials in an apparent bid to seek information on economic policy, exports and trade.
Jointly published by the French newspaper Liberation and the online outlet Mediapart, the allegations follow claims that French presidents were bugged.
What this reveals is not only the inferiority with which the United States views French politicians, but the equal inferiority it views France’s business community with as well. One of the greatest tricks of empire has always been attacking and co-opting one’s competitors through their ego, leading French industrial and financial interests to believe that there truly was a “chair at the table” for them.
In exchange for sitting in this “chair,” all that was required was “cooperation.” This includes abandoning on multiple occasions France’s own national interests to pursue the larger overarching ambitions of their Transatlantic masters. Foregoing trade with Russia, accepting the current financial and political order imposed by Washington upon Europe, and pursuing multiple wars across North and Central Africa, as well as covertly in the Middle East, has France being dragged into a dangerous game believing themselves as equals in what is clearly a lopsided relationship.
In such a lopsided relationship, it would seem Washington would be more than willing to pass on risk to its Transatlantic “partners.”
Time would like France to forget what just happened, and leave the impression that such violations of trust and mutual respect are typical of the “modern world.” If that were the case, one would expect France to have been conducting equal or greater espionage against the United States in turn, but apparently, that is not the case with France likely lacking even the ability to do so if it wanted.
This reaffirms that however the Europeans view themselves, at the end of the day such notions are irrelevant. Those who control their destiny and have shaped the geopolitical, socioeconomic features of their continent view the Europeans with no more respect or regard than they do any other client regime on the planet. It is likely, that should Europe remain in this lopsided relationship long enough, the time will come where the illusion of mutual interests will wear thin, Europe will attempt to pursue only what is in their best interests, and be regarded no differently than any other “rogue state” labeled as such by Washington.
For France, the only thing more humiliating for national honor than its politicians and economic leaders being spied on and manipulated without their knowledge, are politicians and economic leaders who lack the self-respect to respond to such an outrage. Words like “partnership” are often used when describing the Transatlantic community, but with a brute nation monitoring the every move of those within what it appears to believe is its sphere of influence, “prison warden” and “inmates” might be a more apt description.
Ulson Gunnar, a New York-based geopolitical analyst and writer especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.