Three Years of Confronting Western Propaganda
IN FOCUS, 25 May 2015
21 May 2015 – After my two days marathon discussion with Noam Chomsky, (at MIT in 2012), a bestselling book was born. Later this year a film will hit the cinemas.
Noam and I discussed Western imperialism, and the terror it has been spreading around the world. After WWII, at least 50 million lives were lost. Lives of those whom Orwell used to call “unpeople”; lives brutally interrupted as a result of Western-led and orchestrated wars, invasions, coups and proxy-conflicts.
We discussed at length the Western propaganda, which, for centuries, worked extremely hard to justify everything from the colonialist insanity, to supremacist and exceptionalist theories.
After my encounter with Chomsky, I decided to dedicate at least two years of my life to visiting most parts of the world, where the Empire had been striking; where it was attempting to bulldoze all opposition that was standing on its way to the absolute control over the planet.
My goal was Quixotic – a monster, 1000-page book, exposing and confronting techniques and dogmas utilized by the Empire in all corners of the globe, for purposes of destabilizing “rebellious” nations, overthrowing “unruly” governments, or simply grabbing natural resources.
As a philosopher and investigative journalist, I was aiming at both defining how the Western dogmas and propaganda work, and at giving concrete examples of the horror into which our planet was once again descending.
In the past, I have lived and worked on all continents, from Oceania to South America, North America, Africa, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Throughout the years, I became convinced that the natural development of the human race was interrupted, derailed and forced into dark alleys by extremely selfish, perverse group of people and the states, which I call The Empire.
The Empire is “fundamentalist”; it believes, religiously, in its cultural and racial superiority. It is convinced that dominating the world is its sacred right. To achieve its goal, it is using imperialism, colonialism and savage neoliberalism. It is willing to sacrifice millions, tens of millions of human lives to achieve its goals.
I witnessed its crimes on all continents. And I finally realized that it is my duty to define its actions and deceits.
Soon I decided on the title of my book: “Exposing Lies of The Empire”.
It is clear that the Empire lies and that it uses some of its best brains to spread fabrications, as well as billions of dollars in cold cash. It is because the arrangement of the world is grotesque and thoroughly absurd. And only propaganda, shaped to perfection, can guarantee that status quo is maintained. Propaganda and submissiveness of a brainwashed population (in the West), which accepted such propaganda in exchange for at least relatively privileged position in the world.
I talked to Westerners in Paris, London and New York, and I was stunned how little “freedom” there really is, how intellectually cowardly the citizens of the Empire are. In hundreds of art galleries of Paris, I encountered almost no political art, nothing that would make people dream of a better world. In Europe, the level of knowledge about the ‘surrounding world’ (that very same world which basically feeds the continent) was close to zero. Very little was known about the crimes that the Empire is committing.
Europeans are self-promoters, defining themselves as educated and refined, but well over 99 percent of those I challenged could not name even one Korean writer, or Japanese painter, of Chinese classical musicians. Any elementary school kid in Beijing or Tokyo can produce dozens of names of Western cultural icons from the top of their head.
China is different. It is obsessed with knowledge! I spent days in Beijing and Shanghai theatres, opera houses and galleries. I spoke at Tsinghua University (they ran a 2-day seminar on my work) in order to understand Chinese students better. I drove some 5,000 kilometers all around China. I always knew that the Western media has been openly and shamelessly spreading lies about the PRC, trying to shout loudly and continuously, that China is not a socialist country, anymore. In fact, anybody who knows it well can testify that it is socialist and its tremendous success derives from this very fact.
I visited North Korea, as it was celebrating its 60th anniversary of victory. I spent time talking to North Korean citizens, from farmers and workers, to artists, even to the Vice President. I was enormously impressed – by the housing, public transportation, culture. People were cool. My interpreter was devouring mountains of potato chips, picking my brain about South American music, while asking me for advice on how to deal with her cautious boyfriend. It was all very “normal”. I saw more propaganda all over South Korea, than in the North. Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun interviewed me on the subject, but no Western mainstream publication would run such a story.
I was writing my book as I went: each country smeared by the Empire and “rehabilitated” by me – one chapter. A story about some outrageous lie – another chapter…
Zimbabwe – I read in the Economist and on the BBC site that crime there is endemic, that there are no functioning operation theatres in Harare’s hospitals, that Harare is “the worst city on earth”. I went. All lies. There were dozens of operation theatres in several hospitals. After Nairobi where I was then living, and after Kampala and Kigali where I was often working – three darlings of Western imperialism, as Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya have been plundering and ravishing the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Somalia on behalf of Washington, Paris and London – Harare felt safe, beautiful, cultural; the capital of the country with the highest literacy rate in Africa. While in Nairobi, more than half of the people live in appalling slums and misery, I found only about one square kilometer of slums in Harare.
South Africa, struggling to shake off its terrible legacy of apartheid, is another target of negative Western propaganda. It is because the country is, despite many hindrances, still marching forward, inspired by the left-wing ideology.
Parallel to writing my book, I was filming several documentary films for TeleSur and PressTV, to keep afloat. I went all “around Syria”, where NATO trained and financed “Syrian opposition”, including ISIS, in the refugee camps of Jordan and Turkey. I travelled to Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. The West destabilized, ravished one of the greatest countries of the Middle East, as it ravished the entire region.
I worked in Bahrain and Iraq where, at some point I stood on the bridge blown up by ISIS, looking at two villages bombed to the ground by the US, the city of Mosul only six kilometers away. All actors of this bloody, nightmarish drama were actually related or produced by the Empire’s “foreign policy”, or were part of the Empire themselves.
Lies of the Empire are piling on top of each other. “India, the largest democracy”! Anyone who knows this country, even my luminous Indian friends like writer Arundhati Roy (author of The God of Small Things) and documentary film-maker Sanjay Kak, feel unwell hearing this cliché. India is free only for the elites. It is built on the “ideals” of British colonialism. I call it “securistan”.
In my book, I am showing examples how the Empire tries to destroy Russia, Venezuela, Cuba, Eritrea, China, South Africa, and Iran – through outrageous propaganda and through manufacturing of the “opposition movements”. Last year I spent two weeks in Hong Kong trying to understand how the brains of local students work, how they were indoctrinated, and made to fall for the Western dogmas, how they are made to antagonize China. The parallel with the strategy that the Empire is using in order to destabilize and smear Cuba, Venezuela and Russia was striking.
I drove all around Ukraine, realizing how close most of the people there felt towards Russia. I talked to workers at the city of Krivoi Rog, to grandmas in the countryside, to students in Kharkov and Odessa: the West created the conflict in Ukraine and pushed it to complete absurdity, dividing two great nations with virtually the same culture.
I also studied environmental destruction in Oceania and Indonesia. In Micronesia, entire nations may have to be soon evacuated because of the global warming. I wrote entire book on the topic, several years ago, but “Exposing Lies of the Empire” is also touching this shocking subject. All over the Oceania, the Empire created “culture of dependence”, and destroyed enormous old and fascinating civilization.
“Exposing Lies of The Empire” is now in print, but I do not feel that the journey is over. 822 pages (the printing house could not accept 1.000 pages and the font had to be changed) is actually very little, comparing to thousands of horrendous stories that the Empire is triggering all over the world.
There is no time to take a break. Pseudo-reality and outright lies of the Western imperialism have to be confronted.
My work on the second volume of “Exposing Lies of The Empire” already began. The book will keep expanding. It is “the process”, which will never end, as long as the imperialism reigns.
Andre Vltchek is a novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries.
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