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U.S. Midterms: Prepare for More War, More Spying, Rigged Trade (Rossiya Segodnya, Russia)

 

"The Republican leadership will likely bury or heavily redact the report on CIA torture, absolving American advocates of the practice, to say nothing of the foreign governments who provided assistance and cover. The most dangerous benefactor of a Republican Congress is America's military-industrial complex. More defense spending means more war (and more war means more defense spending). On trade, a Republican majority will mean additional support for TTIP and TPP, which will provide legal avenues for American corporations to ignore, overrule, and weaken labor regulations, environmental protections, and tax laws implemented in the European social democracies."

 

By Daniel Zubov

 

November 7, 2014

 

Russia - Rossiya Segodnya Original Article (English)

WASHINGTON: Republicans have claimed control of the Senate, winning open seats in Montana, South Dakota, Iowa, and West Virginia, and defeating Democratic incumbents in Colorado, Arkansas, and North Carolina; in total they have added at least 13 seats to their majority in the House of Representatives.

 

Furthermore, the balance in the Senate is 52 Republicans to 46 Democrats, with two races, in Arkansas and Louisiana [and Alaska] yet to be decided. In the House of Representatives, it is 243 Republicans to 179 Democrats. This gives Republicans control of the important Senate committees on military affairs, intelligence, and foreign relations, and expands their majorities on the equivalent committees in the House.

 

Among the losing Democrats is Colorado Senator Mark Udall, who was a leading opponent of National Security Agency effort to expand and codify its ability to spy on foreign governments and Americans, businesses, politicians and ordinary citizens. Udall's loss will likely mean an expansion of those efforts.

 

As a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Udall was also fighting for the release of a report on the CIA's torture program during the Bush presidency. Unless the report is released in the next two months, the Republican leadership will likely bury or heavily redact the report, absolving the American advocates of torture, to say nothing of the foreign governments who provided assistance and cover.

 

Republican leadership on the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Affairs Committees will mean that advocates of proxy wars in Ukraine and Georgia will be able to set the agenda for hearings and legislation.

 

Two other areas where Republicans in the Senate may be able to work with House Republicans and President Obama include the passage of free trade agreements and oil pipelines.

 

On trade, a Republican majority will mean additional support for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). These will look to consolidate America's economic bloc and provide legal avenues for American corporations to ignore, overrule, and weaken labor regulations, environmental protections, and tax laws implemented in European social democracies.

 

The Republican Senate's support for the Keystone XL pipeline to bring Canadian crude oil to U.S. refineries in Texas (as well as drilling in national parks and along America's coasts) is based on a stated desire to reduce imports of Russian crude oil and increase American oil exports, which have doubled since 2008, when President Obama took office.

 

The most dangerous benefactor of a Republican Congress is America's military-industrial complex. The American defense budget continues to outpace those of every other nation, and Republicans campaigned against the modest cuts imposed by the 2013 sequester. More defense spending means more war (and more war means more defense spending), so Republican leaders could expand the war in Iraq and Syria and potentially look for larger targets.

 

The 2014 midterm elections were also the most expensive, thanks to the decision by the 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision to dismantle campaign finance rules in the Citizens United case. American coal and oil oligarchs spent upwards of $300 million to elect Republican candidates who will be deferential to their causes.

 

The growing role of U.S. oligarchs in undermining an already fragile system of representative democracy opens the door to increased military and political adventurism on the part of the U.S. military-intelligence community and their backers in military industrial corporations that are reaping huge profits from war. Those profits turn into unlimited campaign spending, drowning out the voices of the wider population that opposes war.

Posted By Worldmeets.US

 

The elections also represent a rapprochement between Republican Party leaders and their grassroots "Tea Party." Republican candidates espoused a Tea Party agenda but no longer felt the need to identify with the group. When the "Republican" brand was unpopular after the Bush presidency, another party was needed, but when that group became unpopular after election failures in 2012, the Republican Party fully embraced an agenda based on being anti-Obama and anti-Democratic. It is unlikely that they will play a major role until the newly-elected Republicans become unpopular again.

 

The one area in which President Obama has the most leeway in his last two years to act without Congress is also the area where he agrees most with Republican leaders: foreign policy. In addition to appointing two Republicans as his secretaries of defense, President Obama has used military force against Yemen, Libya, and Syria and has continued action in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Somalia. He has also pledged $1 billion to bolster America's military presence in Eastern Europe.

 

Now that election day is over, Democrats and Republicans are already counting down and ramping up for 2016: Democrats in hope of retaking Congress and Republicans trying to put one of their own into the White House.

 

Center for International Journalism and Research, Rossiya Segodnya

 

 

 

PAST ELECTION COVERGE:  

Le Monde, France: Midterm Fallout: Obama Weakened on Iran and the Global Stage

Le Monde, France: Midterms: Obama Weakened When World Needs America Most

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: U.S. Midterms: The Sins of Obama - Real and Imagined

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: With Romney in the White House, 'War is More Likely'  

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: Walesa on Romney: 'We are Alike'

Les Echos, France: China's Leadership Transition No Match Next to America's 

Kommersant, Russia: Romney's 'Caveman Proclamations' No Longer Worry Kremlin  

Frankfurter Rundschau, Germany: 'Thank You America': Now Obama Has to Deliver

La Stampa, Italy: Obama's Last Campaign

Corriere Della Sera, Italy: 'Obama Prototype': Rome's First Black Emperor, Septimius Severus

La Stampa, Italy: America's $5 Billion Election Race: A Sign of 'Nastier' Things to Come?

Rceczpospolita, Poland: Obama's Win: 'Somehow, Poland will Have to Live with it'    

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: On Obama's Visit, Dresses are Lost in a Sea of Suits

El Espectador, Colombia: U.S. Election: 'Best that Could Happen to the Cradle of Liberty'

Le Monde France: Obama Victory Exposes Hubris of Sarkozy and French Right

Huanqiu, China: American Democracy: A Great Show but No Fun to Participate in
Estadao, Brazil: In Retaining Obama, Americans Choose 'Known' Over 'Dangerous'

Independent, U.K.: After the Battle, the Wake: Inquest and Drink for Reeling Romneyites

Independent, U.K.: Obama Readies to Build Bridges, but Needs New Allies

HN, Czech Republic: Obama Reelection Means 'More Bad News' for Europe
The Daily Nation, Kenya: After Victory is 'God's Plan' says Momma Sarah Obama

Liberation, France: After 'Giving Us a Scare' - Obama Wins Again
Guardian, U.K.: Mitt Romney Betrayed By Hardline Republicans

Economist, U.K.: Obama's Win Raises Questions for Republicans

Rzeczpospolita, Poland: Romney is the Better Choice for Poland

Rzeczpospolita, Poland: Obama Must Be Told: Europe is No Less Important than Asia  

Rzeczpospolita, Poland: Election in America: Romney Gives Poland an Opening    

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: Romney's Blunders Give Poland a Boost!  

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: Walesa on Romney: 'We are Alike'

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: Romney's Biggest Weakness Exposed on Sojourn to Poland

La Stampa, Italy: Second Term Trials will Reveal Mettle of 'Enigmatic' Obama

Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland: Obama's Lesson: Poland Can't Count on the United States
De Volkskrant, The Netherlands: Betting on Obama to Quickly Show His Greatness
Le Figaro, France: Obama Version II Ready to 'Return Blow for Blow!'
Folha, Brazil: Obama's Legacy Depends Most on U.S. Energy Transition
Xinhua, China: Barack Obama: 'Handsome and Young to Hoary and Old'
El Universal, Mexico: Influence-Flush U.S. Latinos Must 'Exploit Unprecedented Moment'
Ottawa Citizen, Canada: Obama Fails to Make Convincing Case for Strong Government
Globe & Mail, Canada: Obama Talks Alternative Energy While Counting on an Oil Boom'
Globe & Mail, Canada: Obama Pragmatist, Meet Obama the Liberal '
Economist, U.K.: Barack Obama is from the Government, and He is Here to Help You
Belfast Telegraph, North Ireland : Obama's Toughest Battle is Upon Him
NZZ Switzerland: Obama II: Prepare for America's New Danger- Averse Global Course

 

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Posted By Worldmeets.US November 7, 2014, 2:19 pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

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