By Theodore Shoebat
Donald Trump has declared that the European Union, China and Russia as “foes” of America. Trump said from his Scottish gulf course:
“I think we have a lot of foes … I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now you wouldn’t think of the European Union, but they’re a foe … Russia is foe in certain respects. China is a foe economically, certainly they are a foe – but that doesn’t mean they are bad … It doesn’t mean anything,” he continued. “It means that they are competitive. They want to do well and we want to do well.”
The president of the European Council responded that “whoever says we are foes is spreading fake news”. Trump introduced a 25 percent and a 10-percent import tariff on commodities on June 1st. The measure triggered an acrimonious response and threats of retaliation from both the European Union and Canada.
Trump is antagonizing the European Union, but at the same time he is empowering Germany by telling the Germans that they need to pay more on their military, going so far as to say that they should spend 4% of their GDP on their military, thus enabling a reinvigoration of Germanic militarism.
Trump’s remarks on the European Union seems to be a way to push Europe out of the American security umbrella, which would give the Germans the green light to strengthen their military (doing exactly what Trump has been demanding for). By Trump exhorting the Germans to spend more on their military, he is doing exactly what the Germans want, which giving them the leeway to make their military powerful. Germany currently has the strongest economy in Europe and the fourth largest economy in the world. Imagine if Germany spent 4% of their GDP on their military; it would be a very dangerous force.
The Germans have actually been disturbingly enthusiastic about nuclear weapons, with Germany recently asking Washington if their jet fighter, the Eurofighter Typhoon, could hold nuclear bombs. And lets not forget that officials within the US government who know that elements within the German government would pursue the production of nuclear weapons. This is made known in a report addressed to the Committee on Foreign Relations of the United States Senate in 2008, entitled: Chain Reaction: Avoiding a Nuclear Arms Race in the Middle East, in which it says:
“In the cases of Germany and Japan, both countries can easily obtain nuclear weapons but have chosen not to because of their integration beneath a NATO (Germany) or an American (Japan) security umbrella. Today, all of these countries have the technical capacity to obtain nuclear weapons in a matter of months or a few short years. Yet, they chose not to because of their respective cost-benefit analyses. Pursuing nuclear weapons demands a large amount of finite money and other resources and could invite punishing international political pressure and economic sanctions. At the same time, little need exists to pursue such an undesirable policy because these countries do not view nuclear weapons as necessary for their national security. This belief derives primarily from the fact that these countries rest comfortably beneath a U.S. or U.S.-led security umbrella. If these countries ever begin to question the reliability of this security umbrella, they would almost certainly reassess past nuclear weapons decisions.”
So, that Germany is even discussing the idea of their Eurofighter air force jets possessing nuclear bombs reveals the truth in this statement. What is happening between the US and the EU is reminiscent of what happened between the Nixon administration and the Bretton Wood system which was established at the end of the Second World War.
On July of 1944, just three weeks after the horrid battle of D-Day on the beaches of Normandy, in which thousands of American troops were slaughtered by the Nazi army, the United States and England held a meeting in the conference rooms of the Mount Washington Hotel in the town of Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. The meeting was not on the war itself, but on the postwar world order, on a new global currency system.
The Americans knew that the Germans and their axis of evil were going to lose, now was the time to settle on the creation of a global financial system. The Americans had already concluded that isolationism was not a beneficial idea for preserving peace, as President Roosevelt abandoned American isolationism in a speech he made on July 1, 1944, in which he said: “The economic health of every country is a proper matter of concern to all its neighbors, near and far.”
After the war, the United States was the only country whose currency survived the conflict, perhaps with the exception of Switzerland (in whose banks the Nazis put their money to preserve it for the rebuilding of Germany). During the war, regimes that were working for the Nazis had printed so much of their currencies for the support of the Nazis’ war that by the end they were not worth anything. What was king was the American dollar. Europe needed to be remonetized, and this was what the discussion was on in the meeting in Bretton Woods.
Winston Churchill’s government sent as its representative John Maynard Keynes (a homosexual), who argued for a global currency. This was rejected by Roosevelt’s representative, Harry Dexter White, who wanted, understandably, for the American dollar to reign supreme. The conclusion of the conference was that Europe would be put under the American gold standard. In this system, known as the Bretton Woods system, $35 was worth one ounce of American gold, and European currencies would be conformed to this, matching the dollar amount that would match with the value of US gold.
But, if the American monetary system was going to succeed at the international level, the dollar needed economic “shock absorbers” to endure an international recession. The United States needed the dollar to be dominant in both Europe and Asia. Which countries, from each of these two continents, would be the economic powerhouses to provide strong currencies by which to back up the dollar? The United States chose Germany and Japan.
Germany was the most industrious country in Europe. Even though it was smashed with bombs, by 1945 Germany was producing twice as much goods as France was. Japan, regardless of having two nukes dropped on it, still retained the great majority of its factories, and a very disciplined, skilled and organized work force. Both countries were fully capable — with the help of the US — to reindustrialize themselves.
The US also, supposedly, believed that they could use Germany and Japan — two countries that fought Russia, and Japan of course fought China several times — to keep Russia and China in check. Its very interesting how this can be compared to how the US supported Turkey, arming the Turks to the tee (making them the second most armed nation in NATO) in the 1980s under America’s pro-Nazi and pro-nationalist program, Operation Gladio, to supposedly prepare for a Soviet invasion of Europe and the Middle East. These three very industrial and warlike nations — Turkey, Japan and Germany — have been militarized with the help of the US, and this will only be a monster that America and its allies will have to face in the future.
At the end of the Second World War, the Americans agreed that Germany must be reduced to an agricultural nation, dedicated to agrarian life and not to heavy industrialization which leads to a strong military force and imperialism. In the Potsdam Conference of 1945, the United States, Britain and the USSR, agreed on the “reduction or destruction of all civilian heavy-industry with war potential” and on “restructuring the German economy toward agriculture and light industry.”
This policy was reversed on September 6th, 1946, when James F. Byrnes, the US secretary of state, went to Stuttgart and gave his “Speech of Hope” in which he said that “the German people people [should] not … be denied to use … savings as they might be able to accumulate by hard work and frugal living to build up their industries for peaceful purposes.” Herbert Hoover echoed this on March 18th, 1947, when he said: “There is an illusion that the New Germany … can be reduced to a pastoral state. It cannot be done unless we exterminate or remove 25 million people out of it.”
Now, this leads us to the situation of France and the creation of the euro as the currency of the European Union. The French war hero who fought the Nazis in the Second World War, Charles de Gaulle, was always petrified at the idea of Germany financially dominating France. When Henry Kissinger asked de Gaulle what France would do to stop Germany dominating the European Union, he said, “Par la guerre!” “By war!” And this was not said in jest.
De Gaulle had lived his whole life seeing, and came from a generation that saw, the Germanians trying to dominate through industry and military might. Just twenty-eight years before de Gaulle’s birth, in 1862, the father of German unification, Otto von Bismarck, delivered his “Blood and Iron” speech in which he declared:
“it is not by speeches and majority resolutions that the great questions of the time are decided – that was the big mistake of 1848 and 1849 – but by iron and blood.”
De Gaulle knew that with a reindustrialized Germany, France would have to seek refuge with the Anglosphere, that is, America and Britain, something he did not want to do. Looking at how the US was enabling and facilitating the industrialization of Germany, de Gaulle realized that France could be a third-rate power under German domination, a thought that brought back wartime humiliations. The German deutsche mark was going to be the dollar’s fortifying currency in Europe. And it was only going to allow the US to dominate Europe and, more specifically to de Gaulle’s fears, France. “What’s the point of Europe?” asked de Gaulle, “It must serve to prevent domination either by the Americans or the Russians.”
This new world order made de Gaulle reconsider something that he had rejected years before: a united economic European union. This presaged the creation of the euro in 1999. Thus, the euro was a currency and a concept used to financially unify Europe and to, supposedly, prevent Germany from returning to the warpath. If the euro fragments, then there will be no incentive to be peaceful, and the old battle lines will reemerge, old hatreds will revive, old borders wished to be restored, through steel and blood. As Yanis Varoufakis wrote in 2016, on the breaking down of the euro:
“The moment a monetary union between different nations begins to fragment, and as the fault lines expand inexorably, only serious dialogue and a readiness to return to the drawing board can mend the fences on which peace and shared prosperity must rely. The lack of such dialogue in the 1930s led to the disintegration of that era’s common currency: the gold standard. Eighty years later, it is happening all over again in a Europe that ought to know better.” (Varoufakis, And The Weak Suffer What They Must? p. xvii)
We are already seeing the process that will lead to the culmination of a revived militarist Germany. And it is being enabled by American policy towards Europe. Remember that in March of 2017 Trump said:
“We have a massive trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay far less than they should on NATO & military. Very bad for U.S. This will change.”
Rex Tillerson repeated this when he said in the same month that “it is no longer sustainable for the U.S. to maintain a disproportionate share of NATO’s defense expenditures.”
While this may appear as good American patriotism, what the Trump administration has done is give the green light to Germany to increase its defense spending and make for itself a bigger military. Hence why the German Christian Democrat, Andreas Nick, said recently in an interview with Tim Sebastian: “I would like to broaden that perspective. We are talking about a 3% objective,” meaning that the Germans are taking the US government’s demand for more defense spending and exceeding it. This will show to be very dangerous. Tim Sebastian asked a good question for Andreas Nick in the debate:
“I’m curious on why you want to spend more on defense. Because every time there’s a crises the German view is: There’s no military solution; in Ukraine and Crimea, there’s no military solution (despite the fact that president Putin had taken one himself); in North Korea, there’s no military solution, we’re told. If there’s no military solution to all these crises, what do you want a bigger army for?”
Andreas Nick said that a bigger army would make a good “deterrence.” But, Tim Sebastian asks, if other countries know that Germany is not going to do anything, then what is the point of having a bigger army for “deterrence”? Andreas Nick said that Germany needs to defend itself and its “allies” against Russia:
“We have to support our allies in Lithuania and Poland, in other countries, against the threat from Russia.”
Not only are the Trump administration’s words giving the green light to German defense spending, but also to Turkey’s defense spending as well. Lets not forget, Turkey is the second most armed country in NATO, and Rex Tillerson said that NATO countries must spend more for their militaries, which means that Turkey is also taking advantage of this to go further into militarism.
GERMANY AND THE BRETTON WOODS SYSTEM
Trump’s demand that Germany must spend more on its defense is reminiscent to what the US did in the 1970s, in which they forced Europe out of the American gold standard since Germany’s actions were undermining the Bretton Woods system and devalued the dollar in the 1960s.
The Bretton Woods system, as the world would quickly see, was not immune to manipulation and imbalances. Currencies were devalued, and at their expense, other currencies were made superior. People took loans of francs from the banks in France, and used them to buy deutsche marks. This devalued the franc and increased the power of the German mark. With the franc devalued, these people who took French loans used their deutsche marks to purchase so many francs that they had enough to pay back their loans and keep the difference.
To try to salvage their currency, the Banque de France, the French central bank, used whatever deutsche marks it had in its vaults to purchase francs and maintain an equilibrium between the mark and the franc. The mark was becoming supreme in postwar Europe. The only thing standing in the way for Germany’s currency was the US dollar. The Americans were sending their dollars into the European markets, either by purchasing European goods or by giving financial aid. However, what kept the dollar in a good position was a balance between Europeans buying American products and Americans purchasing European goods.
Europeans buying American goods, like Boeing airplanes or John Deere tractors, and Americans buying European stuff (like German cars or French wines), guaranteed that US dollars would make their presence in Europe and keep their value. So many dollars were in Europe that they began to be known as euro-dollars. The American Federal Reserve could then purchase as many French francs, British pounds or Greek liras, to maintain their official fixed exchange rate against the powerful deutsche mark.
But, things began to become imbalanced. Thanks to American help, Germany became an industrial powerhouse, and the US found itself buying more European products than Europe was buying American goods. This led to a flood of dollars in the European market, which meant inflation for the American currency. By the late 1960s, the situation got even worse, with the amount of dollars, in the words of economist Yanis Varoufakis, “grew larger than the Caspian Sea, and the Bretton Woods system came under siege.” The power of the dollar was being undermined by the Germans. The amount of dollars in Europe went beyond the dollar value of American gold, which meant that the Europeans, with the amount of American money they had, could have purchased all of America’s stockpile of gold.
This is when the Americans had to change their strategy and end their commitment to the Bretton Woods system of gold being $35 an ounce, and increase the dollar value of the precious metal. In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson told his deputy national security advisor, Francis Bator:
“I will not deflate the American economy, screw up my foreign policy by gutting aid or pulling troops out, or go protectionist just so we can continue to pay out gold to the French at $35 an ounce.”
The Americans wanted to pull the plug on the Europeans. This was not done until the Nixon administration. Nixon’s treasury secretary, the former governor of Texas John Connally, famously said: “My philosophy is that all foreigners are out to screw us and its our job to screw them first.” Connally flew to Europe and in a room full of European finance ministers in Rome, said: “Gentlemen, the dollar is our currency. And from now on, it is your problem.”
In a press conference, Connally recounted what he told European heads of state:
“We told them that we were here as a nation that had given much of our resources and our material resources and otherwise to the world to the point where frankly we were now running a deficit and have been for twenty years and it had drained our reserves and drained our resources to the point where we could no longer do it and frankly we were in trouble and we were coming to our friends to ask for help as they have so many times in the past come to us to ask for help when they were in trouble. That is in essence what we told them.”
The US pulled the plug on Europe. This was announced by President Nixon on August 15th, 1971, in what is called the Nixon Shock. In his announcement, Nixon explained:
“We must protect the position of the American dollar as a pillar of monetary stability around the world. In the past 7 years, there has been an average of one international monetary crisis every year… I have directed Secretary Connally to suspend temporarily the convertibility of the dollar into gold or other reserve assets, except in amounts and conditions determined to be in the interest of monetary stability and in the best interests of the United States. Now, what is this action—which is very technical—what does it mean for you? Let me lay to rest the bugaboo of what is called devaluation.
If you want to buy a foreign car or take a trip abroad, market conditions may cause your dollar to buy slightly less. But if you are among the overwhelming majority of Americans who buy American-made products in America, your dollar will be worth just as much tomorrow as it is today. The effect of this action, in other words, will be to stabilize the dollar.”
This can be compared to what the Trump administration has said to the European powers, essentially: ‘You are on your own. Spend your own money on your own militaries!’ This is only giving the green light to German militarism. We are already seeing this with the German military preparing for a fragmented Europe by the 2040s. According to Business Insider:
“A secret planning document by the German armed forces has predicted that the European Union could fragment and collapse by 2040.
The 102-page future planning paper, called the “Strategic forecast 2040” spells out six possible scenarios, the most extreme of which see unity on the European continent pushed to breaking point.
It was written by the Bundeswehr Planning Office and leaked to Der Spiegel, the highly-regarded German news magazine.
The Spiegel report describes the scenarios, saying: “The worst-case-scenario is the sixth, that depicts a crumbling EU and a former leading power, the USA, trying in vain to stem an erosion of the world order.”
The document, according to the report, was written two years ago. If this is true, it shows that the German government plans for a fragmentation of Europe, and it substantiates what we have been saying: forces within the EU want to fragment Europe, to break down the established world order and remake the world order, As Yanis Varoufakis said recently: “the European Union deep establishment is doing all it can in order to destroy Europe.”
And what will this new order be filled with? With Turkey, Germany and Japan at the helm of this axis of evil? Violence, war, genocide and cruelty.