As I look at the news and see the increased tension between the United States and Iran due to the US killing of Qassem Soleimani, an Iranian general, on 3 January, 2020 in Baghdad, it allowed me to decipher the nature of the new “Cold War.” The US struggle with Iran is part of its struggle to maintain global dominance.
There are two aspects of war – propaganda and operations. Most societal changes fail because the ideology and ethics did not change. They win the operations but lost because the new values were not internalized.
The United States is using its usual tactics in a new situation. Both Russia and China have a much smaller debt to GDP ratio than the US. Russia learnt from the first Cold War and now the Russians have more in reserve than they owe.
Many factors, including the US president being disliked internationally, make US warfare inept. The fact that Iraq, which was recently under US control, called for expulsion of US troops, shows the ineptitude of US propaganda or position aspect of warfare even if it has military superiority. The lesson of the US-Vietnam war illustrated that to be victorious a war must be seen as the right thing to do. This US attack in Iraq fails by that metric.
The lesson for Belize is that US global leadership is being challenged with many successes. Whether its failure to get rid of Maduro in Venezuela, failure to win its trade war with China, failure to win support for Jerusalem being the capital of Israel at the United Nations, US hegemony is uncertain. We are historically, financially and politically linked to the US. It would be wise to pay attention to the US’s downward trajectory and make strategic maneuvers for Belize’s prosperity.
Revenge is almost sacred in Middle Eastern culture, so the military conflict will continue.
Brian E. Plummer