Double standards: US policies on Germany, Japan, Grenada, South Korea and Russia
In the bunker of my thoughts
By Owei Lakemfa
GERMANY is the engine of Europe; its largest economy representing in 2017 28% of the economy of the euro and has the fourth GDP of the universe.
It’s also a showcase of Western democracy with its most prominent female politician since World War II, Angela Dorothea Merkel, who served as chancellor from 2005 for 16 years. Yet, in practice, the United States, the United States, does not believe that Germany is mature enough to exercise its right to self-determination; therefore, today, 77 years after its servicemen entered Germany as conquerors or liberators, they refused to leave.
Things were so bad that until the early 1990s, American troops in the name of their right to maintain military bases occupied hundreds of German towns and villages. Today, the Americans have reduced their occupation to 40 major military bases after closing more than 220 others; but they still maintain a minimum of 35,000 American troops on German soil. In addition, Germany is obliged to subsidize American soldiers on its soil. In 2018, it spent $118 million to subsidize foreign troops. The grant prompted Mr. Dagdelen, a member of the Left Party, to issue a statement saying: ‘It is high time to stop this massive waste of taxpayers’ money… it is time for American soldiers to go home “.
In fact, since the end of the Second World War in 1945, Germany remained, officially, a vassal state until it obtained sovereign status on March 15, 1991. Despite this sovereignty, it can only have ‘a military (German Heer) for self-defense. and is not allowed to possess biological, chemical or nuclear weapons. So when the Germans seemed hesitant to join the United States in their claims that Ukraine had the sovereign right to do whatever it wanted as a country, it wasn’t just about gas supplies . The fact is that Germany is not entitled to as many sovereign rights as the Ukrainians who have an unlimited army or as Pakistan, India and Israel who could develop nuclear weapons.
It’s not that the Germans didn’t protest the continued American occupation of their lands. One of the most significant of the early 1980s occurred in the port city of Bremerhaven, when around 15,000 Germans marched to the main gate of the Carl Schurz barracks, an airbase whose Americans seized had been seized since May 1945 and the port of Bremerhaven, also occupied by America. Some of these protests were against the American stationing of medium-range nuclear missiles in Germany.
However, I must point out that the United States grants the Germans more autonomy than the Japanese who, until today, are officially not allowed to have an army or fully exercise their right to self-determination. As the Japanese retreated on all fronts in 1945, the American establishment decided to show the Japanese just how powerful and ruthless they could be. First, on August 6, he dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, and three days later on Nagasaki. Some 200,000 Japanese were massacred in the double explosion after which the Americans, riding the pulverized Japanese, decided to dictate to them to this day.
One of the basic rules that the Americans gave to the Japanese was “You shall have no army”. To make sure of this, the occupying American army under the command of General Douglas MacArthur drafted and imposed on the Japanese its surviving constitution of May 3, 1947. Written by two American soldiers, Milo Rowell and Courtney Whitney, Article 9 of the Japanese constitution states: “Asking sincerely for an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as their sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes”. This, in practice, denies the Japanese the right to have an army.
Thus, the Japanese do not have the right to form an army like Nigeria or Sao Tome can. To enforce his will, the American troops who invaded and occupied Japan are still in that country. Today, 77 years later, 53,700 American soldiers still occupy Japan. As part of the punishment, Japan is now paying $1.9 billion a year to maintain the US occupation army. Although Japan can spend 1% of its GDP on defence, it must be for “non-military” purposes.
There was a civil war between Koreans from June 25, 1950 to July 27, 1953, and several countries sent troops to fight on each side. America fought alongside South Korea and has kept its troops there ever since. Today, there are 28,500 American troops in that country, and South Korea now pays Americans $1.03 billion a year to maintain the troops.
Grenada is supposed to be a sovereign country in the Caribbean Sea. In October 1983, its radical leader, Maurice Bishop, was killed in a palace coup led by his deputy, Bernard Coard.
The United States, under the guise of protecting American students at St George’s Medical School in Grenada, invaded the small country with a coalition of eight neighboring countries. The world, including Britain, a close US ally, condemned the invasion as senseless. The Americans disbanded the Grenadian army, and until today, 39 years later, the Americans do not allow this country to have an army. The only force the Americans allow is the Royal Grenada Police Force.
Guantanamo Bay, at the eastern end of Cuba, is 116 square kilometers of Cuban land. When Cuba was a Spanish colony in 1898, America during the Spanish-American War captured Guantanamo Bay and today, 124 years later, has refused to give it up despite Cuba’s repeated pleas. Instead, the United States uses the entire bay as a military base and mass detention center for its enemies. American detainees in the bay are denied basic human rights, including that of a fair trial or visitation.
The United States alone has more than 80,000 troops armed with nuclear missiles stationed in Europe and has made a steady advance eastward toward Russia, including neighboring Poland; yet some beautiful people say that Russia does not need to react until troops and weapons are on its soil. Thus, any reaction from Russia is “unprovoked”. How much more can a country be provoked?
Thus, those of us who advocate that what is necessary for the war in Ukraine to be an immediate ceasefire and a negotiated settlement are seen as treason, while the United States, which denies many countries their sovereignty, are projected as the champions of freedom.
Over the past few weeks, whenever I write or refer to the war in Ukraine, the missiles are coming from both the left and the right. Let me take shelter in the bunker of my thoughts before the new missiles drawn to this room come flying.