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Jottings on the Conjuncture

Perry Anderson’s article in the latest NLR raises a few points that I found to be slightly different from my previous take on things. He argues against the prevalent notion that it was only after Bush II that things in the US took a drastically interventionist turn abroad — this being so popular likely because many of the antiBushistes are simply too young to recall the crimes of Clinton, Bush I, Reagan, and so on — and instead situates the current administration’s acts in a historical string of policy decisions that stretch back 30 years. That is certainly a worthwhile thing to remember. It is a corrective for thinking that the next administration will magically fix things; and it shows the continuity in Bush II’s policy decisions with that of Clinton.

Anderson also has an long section on the Israel lobby. I don’t know what to make of this: I am fairly sure that the lobby plays a large role in US actions in the Middle East, but I am not sure if it is the determining factor, or as important as Anderson makes it out to be here. Certainly it is an important one, but the windfall that many corporations are taking providing the services to the military and the State department seems to be more significant. Of course: the billions in aid going to Israel also would interest these corps.

The section on global resistances is mostly depressing. Latin America is held up as the most promising region in the world, and it isn’t so promising.

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