A war of words has broken out between the governments of Japan and North Korea, with Japan throwing its weight behind American policies of sanctions and military force while North Korea threatens to unleash their nuclear arsenal on the Land of the Rising Sun.
Speaking to the United Nations General Assembly in September, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe urged the nations of the world to block Pyongyang's access to any "goods, funds, people and technology" that could assist the North Korean missile program.
"We must make North Korea abandon all nuclear and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner. What is needed to do that is not dialogue, but pressure," said Abe, stressing a hardline approach of sanctions over diplomacy.
The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the North Korean state media outlet, decried Abe's comments, writing that "such racket" would nothing except incite tension and, ultimately, prove a "suicidal deed that will bring nuclear clouds to the Japanese archipelago."
"No one knows when the touch-and-go situation will lead to a nuclear war, but if so, the Japanese archipelago will be engulfed in flames in a moment. This is too self-evident," KCNA added.
In response to the North's threats, Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera threw his weight behind the similarly provocative comments of US president Donald Trump. "As part of putting pressure on North Korea, we welcome President Trump's strong language," Ondera told the Financial Times.
The American empire is coming to an end. The U.S. economy is being drained by wars in the Middle East and vast military expansion around the globe. It is burdened by growing deficits, along with the devastating effects of deindustrialization and global trade agreements. Our democracy has been captured and destroyed by corporations that steadily demand more tax cuts, more deregulation and impunity from prosecution for massive acts of financial fraud, all the while looting trillions from the U.S. treasury in the form of bailouts. The nation has lost the power and respect needed to induce allies in Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa to do its bidding. Add to this the mounting destruction caused by climate change and you have a recipe for an emerging dystopia.
Overseeing this descent at the highest levels of the federal and state governments is a motley collection of imbeciles, con artists, thieves, opportunists and warmongering generals. And to be clear, I am speaking about Democrats, too.
The empire will limp along, steadily losing influence until the dollar is dropped as the world’s reserve currency, plunging the United States into a crippling depression and instantly forcing a massive contraction of its military machine.
Short of a sudden and widespread popular revolt, which does not seem likely, the death spiral appears unstoppable, meaning the United States as we know it will no longer exist within a decade or, at most, two.
The global vacuum we leave behind will be filled by China, already establishing itself as an economic and military juggernaut, or perhaps there will be a multipolar world carved up among Russia, China, India, Brazil, Turkey, South Africa and a few other states. Or maybe the void will be filled, as the historian Alfred W. McCoy writes in his book “In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of US Global Power,” by “a coalition of transnational corporations, multilateral military forces like NATO, and an international financial leadership self-selected at Davos and Bilderberg” that will “forge a supranational nexus to supersede any nation or empire.”
Under every measurement, from financial growth and infrastructure investment to advanced technology, including supercomputers, space weaponry and cyberwarfare, we are being rapidly overtaken by the Chinese. “In April 2015 the U.S. Department of Agriculture suggested that the American economy would grow by nearly 50 percent over the next 15 years, while China’s would triple and come close to surpassing America’s in 2030,” McCoy noted.
Empires in decay embrace an almost willful suicide. Blinded by their hubris and unable to face the reality of their diminishing power, they retreat into a fantasy world where hard and unpleasant facts no longer intrude. They replace diplomacy, multilateralism and politics with unilateral threats and the blunt instrument of war.
Catalans Occupy Schools, Blockade Roads Amid Police/Government Threats, "History's About To Be Written"
What Barcelona Is Teaching America (And The Rest Of The World) About Freedom And Political Decentralization
Watch: Female Cab Driver Entering Mandalay Bay Casino Property Records Video That Appears To Capture Gun Fire From More Than One Location