Arab democracies win G8 aid pledge … The world's richest countries have agreed a multibillion-dollar aid package for Tunisia and Egypt, the two countries at the forefront of toppling autocratic regimes in the Arab spring. Members of the Group of Eight economic powers, led by the US, pledged at their summit in Deauville, France, to provide a combination of debt relief, aid and assistance to the two Arab countries to help build their democracies. – Financial Times
Dominant Social Theme: Supporting the glorious Arab Spring is important.
Free-Market Analysis: As usual with power elite memes, time makes meanings clearer. We have speculated that the CIA-sponsored youth movements in such places as Tunisia and Egypt were precursors of Islamic governments, and that Anglo-American power elite actually sought such governments for purposes of sustaining the faux war on terror.
This may in fact still be the case, but one of the current G8s high-profile gambits has to do with aid for Tunisia and Egypt to help "build democracy." (See article excerpt above.) Thus, we begin to think the preferred governmental mechanism is regulatory democracy; Islamic republics are a kind of fallback. Of course, this is the way the Western elites like to do business, creating controlled oppositions, so we are still not ruling out the formation of Islamic republics by any means.
In Tunisia, various Islamic clerics have returned (and we have written about them in the past). In Egypt, the CIA-penetrated Muslim Brotherhood is the highest profile political party. (This is not hard as there do not seem to be any other, real parties.) But nonetheless, we can gather from the aid packages that the West would prefer regulatory democracies to Islamic Republics in these two countries, anyway.
Having suggested this, we need to elaborate. There are five countries that we count as successfully destabilized by the West (America in particular). They are Afghanistan, Iraq, Tunisia, Egypt and the Ivory Coast. (Doubtless there are more but these are the ones that spring most clearly and unambiguously to mind.)
Of the five, however, only in the Ivory Coast can regulatory democracy truly be said to have taken hold – but delicately. In Afghanistan, the Hamid Karzai government likely will not outlast the presence of NATO. In Iraq, the current governmental system may not much outlast the withdrawal of American troops.
Both Egypt and Tunisia in our view have been scheduled for regulatory democracies, but it's not happening easily or quickly. We figure that's because it is a lot harder to manipulate political processes in the Era of the Internet than it was in the 20th century.
We can see other elements of manipulation with the benefit of hindsight. The youth movements – the Arab Spring – sweeping the Middle East and upper Africa, has evidently exceeded what was evidently and obviously planned. Apparently, the West wanted to stop, at least for the moment, with Libya, Syria, Tunisia and Egypt. What the elites are struggling with, instead, is the progressive destabilization of at least three more countries, Yemen, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Not Good.
It was in a sense gratifying, and perhaps amusing, to use the most modern technology to pretend to create mass movements of youth (see AYM). Old men like Hosni Mubarak were not sufficiently pliable in the 21st century. (Nor was a younger man, Laurent Gbagbo of the Ivory Coast.) But now it is not amusing – or efficient – at all. There is every evidence that Yemen (first) Bahrain (second) and Saudi Arabia (third) are going to be ultimate victims of recent too-clever Western youth manipulations.
Middle Eastern countries themselves are well aware of the danger. Western allies such as Qatar are scrambling to set up aid banks that will channel these "color revolutions" in the right direction. Of course, if Foggy Bottom hadn't been too smart by half, this would not have been necessary. One could have slipped Mubarak a poisoned chalice or something. Egypt's dramatic youth movement was a testament to the West's ability to manipulate millions, but in the end it has likely caused more problems than it has solved.
And so there is a sudden scramble to bankroll efforts to steer these destabilized countries in the "right" direction. Qatar's development bank is said to have been inspired by the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development "that helped to rebuild the economies and societies of eastern bloc countries at the end of the cold war."
It is no small plan. According to the Financial Times, it "envisaged tens of billions of dollars of yearly lending for political transitions … Qatar was seeking the support of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates for the initiative."
This is the stated goal then – regulatory democracies not Islamic republics. It is a predictable dominant social theme. Destabilizations have taken place and the citizenry has been freed! … "The details of the package were being hammered out over dinner at the summit in Deauville and include an offer by President Barack Obama this month that the US will relieve up to $1bn debt and guarantee another $1bn in loans for Egypt."
Meanwhile, the EU has apparently been given the responsibility of funding Africa, according to the Times article. "José Manuel Barroso, European Commission president, has announced an extra €1.24bn ($1.75bn) for the European Union's so-called neighbourhood policy, which includes help for north Africa … Britain is offering help to the region of £110m ($180m) over four years, including £10m a year to promote democracy and help build new political parties."
The money shows where the West wants to go. Yet the kind of money that is now going to be aimed at unresolved political structures in these country likely WILL NOT have the desired effect. Why? Because such money is much more effective COVERTLY than OVERTLY. It is like everything else the old men of Money Power are trying to do. What worked in secrecy in the 20th century will not work at all in the 21st century.
Think about it. You spilled blood for your cause. Now here comes the money … and it is funding those who are controlled by the West. There is no hiding it (as it would have been hidden in the 20th century). You can read about it. You can see EXACTLY where the money is going, whose pockets it is lining. This is not helpful. It is more or less a roadmap for disenfranchisement. Those gaining, will lose credibility. And the effect will be inversely proportionate.
We do not put it past Western elites to be playing an even more subtle game. It is possible that Saudi Arabia is supposed to be destabilized to usher in a non-dollar, global currency. It is possible that the creation of a string of Islamic republics is still the ultimate goal (the better to support the "war on terror"). It is even possible that general chaos and regional war is the preferable outcome (as we pointed out yesterday).
Editor's Note: Clinton exonerates Pakistan over Osama Bin Laden, the BBC reports. We will rewrite that headline as follows: "US Elites Panic as Pakistan Pressure Backfires." We are doubtful that Osama bin Laden was killed by mythical SEALS on May 1 as he had Marfan's Syndrome and was a very sick man 10 years ago when he probably died peacefully in a French hospital. In any case, the US and perhaps the Anglosphere elites had decided to use his "death" to put pressure on top Pakistanis to "do more" to route out the Pashtun Taliban that are attacking American and NATO forces with increased enthusiasm now that the summer is here. This strategy has apparently backfired.
Instead of meekly turning on the Pashtuns as requested, the Punjabi Pakistan elites have begun to turn to China in a refusal to do Washington's bidding. In a panic, US powers-that-be dispatched Senator John Kerry to perform a calibrated climb-down. Not good enough. Thus Hillary Clinton now performs her Pakistan pilgrimage, arriving on an "unannounced visit." Extraordinarily, she was accompanied by the most powerful military man in the world, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen.
And what did Ms. Clinton say when she got to Pakistan? According to the BBC, "US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said there is no evidence senior people in Pakistan knew that Osama Bin Laden lived so close to Islamabad. But she said that the US and Pakistan needed to do more to battle Islamist militancy and that bilateral relations had reached a turning point. Mrs Clinton said any peace deal in Afghanistan would not succeed unless Pakistan was part of the process. She expressed Washington's 'strong commitment' to relations with Pakistan."
It is funny in a sad way. Pakistan gets very bad press in the West as an ignorant, uncultured place that needs US aid to stay afloat. But here we have the spectacle of two of the most important officials in the Western world basically pleading with the ISI and Pakistan's inept political leadership. Will it work? And if not, can we expect President Barack Obama to arrive next?
But if we follow this money, as it is being arranged at the G8, we begin to sense that the unrest in the Middle East is perhaps spilling out of control in ways that were not intended. This is a problem Masters of the Universe sometimes have. The Universe changes before they notice.