Realpolitik vs Realistic Politics

EDITORIAL, 11 April 2016

#423 | Johan Galtung

School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution – Arlington, VA, USA

           Classical Realpolitik is the priority in US foreign relations.  Let force decide issues, if possible by threat, if necessary by fighting to the end.

          The two traditional nominees for the US Presidency, Cruz and Clinton, both advocate open violence; Cruz by “carpet bombing” and by patrolling Muslim neighborhoods making use of force credible, Clinton by standing by her past record of bombing Muslim countries.

          Trump, distancing himself from both Clinton belligerence and Cruz patrolling, deepens underlying conflicts in a most unfortunate way by stirring up prejudice and discrimination against Muslims and Mexicans. He wants a fence, built by Mexico, forcing them out.

          Sanders is so focused on US domestic inequality that he remains vague on foreign policy.  However, he might steer US discourse as well as foreign policy by arguing more positive policies; examples below.

          Net conclusion: the two official candidates, Clinton and Cruz, are more similar than they are to their intra-party rivals. Paul Krugman (INYT 5/6 Mar 2016) throws the official Republican (former) candidate Rubio “con artist” for Donald Trump back at Ryan-Cruz-Rubio.  And Thomas Friedman, “Only Trump can trump Trump” (INYT 10 Mar 2016), says that should Trump become the nominee and elected, he has a lot of space to maneuver towards the center, away from his extreme positions. “He will have no problem playing the moderate unifier”.

          Nevertheless, Trump may already have helped gravediggers dig his grave.

          Both Clinton and Cruz have credibility problems.  Democrats may find Clinton’s turn toward the left incredible and prefer Sanders as more genuine; Republicans may find Cruz Tea Party extremism credible and prefer Trump.  With Sanders-Trump unavailable, high abstention?

          However, in the US delegatocracy, very cleverly crafted to protect the USA against democracy, alternatives may still appear/be drafted.

          US Realpolitik has led to more than 20 million killed in 37 countries after WWII, while the US relative economic, military–not cultural–position in the world declines.  This should lead to a search for something realistic, solving problems rather than adding new problems to the old; solidifying the US position.

          What does it take to make US foreign policy more realistic? New ways of thought more than political decisions and economic allocations.

  1. Identify the positive, good in the other big world actors, Russia-India-China-Islam-EU-Africa-Latin America, learn from positives, and link their good to the US good, for cooperation and harmony.
  2. To promote peace, cooperation must be equitable–mutual and equal benefit–and harmony must be based on empathy–deep understanding of others. Know the shadows of history, often long and deep, to concile past traumas, and to better solve present and future conflicts.
  3. Keep in the back of your mind possible threats from other actors and be strong on non-provocative defensive defense without being paranoid, narcissist, exceptionalist, pre-polarized–just being realistic, not naive.

          Is this act of change, based on consciousness, too demanding when “my old thought brought me and others downhill; I need new thought”? No, but the new consciousness and the new thought have to be enacted.

          The USA has a strong tendency to think in terms of hierarchy and anarchy, forgetting the third option, equity; also to demand that others see the US as positive and good while focusing on their negative and bad; too often resorting to arms instead of conciling traumas-solving conflicts. Yet, Americans who revolted against colonialism and abolished their own slavery may also question their own foreign policy and abolish their own imperialism and warmongering.  After having abolished two institutional scourges of humanity it would be well advised to abolish two more.

          The gains are obvious and will be quick in coming: true greatness, love, leadership, getting out of the increasing irrelevance.

          History moves quickly these days and most states in the world are actually practicing those points–subconsciously, building vast regions with considerable cooperation and harmony.  That trend should reach USA and Israel, and the UK–presently at a tipping-point–those three becoming less belligerent would move the world toward much more peace.  Nonetheless, there are deeper forces than the consciousness in three states.

          There are forces built into the state system itself, pushing the system toward direct or structural violence.  We are thinking of rank disequilibrium and rank incongruence, systemic forces unknown to most, hence even more powerful.  States are ranked in economic, military, political and cultural power.  Power is four-dimensional; they are High or Low on all; HHHH at the top, LLLL at the bottom, powerless.

          However, actors–state or sub-state–may be high on one and low on another, disequilibrated, yearning to lift the lagging dimension(s) up for equilibrium.  Moreover, two of them may have opposite disequilibria, HL and LH, like one high on the economy and low on the military, the other low on the economy and high on the military.

          Whereas rank disequilibrium may be a dilemma for that actor to solve, rank discordance involves two (or more) actors and may lead beyond a dispute to glowing hatred, blatant violence.  Working on their disequilibria both head for the coveted, contested, narrow HH niche.

          There is a “solution”:  all equilibrated, HH, LL.  But that was feudalism; generally more structural violence–as political power in major organizations reflects economic power. The system may oscillate between direct and structural violence with the temptation to simply with force: Realpolitik.  See Abolishing War – Criminalizing War, Removing War Causes, Removing War as Institution, TRANSCEND University Press-TUP, 2015.

          There is a way out shown by NGOs: make actors, H and L, members of an organization with a shared, overarching goal.  That organization today is known as a region, community, union.  Could a United Regions without the veto possibly promote peace better than the United Nations?

___________________________________

Johan Galtung, a professor of peace studies, dr hc mult, is founder of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment and rector of the TRANSCEND Peace University-TPU. He has published 164 books on peace and related issues, of which 41 have been translated into 35 languages, for a total of 135 book translations, including ‘50 Years-100 Peace and Conflict Perspectives,’ published by the TRANSCEND University Press-TUP.

 

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 11 April 2016.

Anticopyright: Editorials and articles originated on TMS may be freely reprinted, disseminated, translated and used as background material, provided an acknowledgement and link to the source, TMS: Realpolitik vs Realistic Politics, is included. Thank you.

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40 Responses to “Realpolitik vs Realistic Politics”

  1. Thomas Krogh says:

    “US Realpolitik has led to more than 20 million killed in 37 countries after WWII, while the US relative economic, military–not cultural–position in the world declines.”

    Uhm, no. Even though you repeat this lie on a weekly basis, it is still a lie. E.g. the people killed in the streets of Budapest by Russian tanks were not killed by “US Realpolitik”. You know this every well, but still continue with your lies.

    Not good enough Johan Galtung.

    And while we are at it. Why do you never mention the countless more kill by Chinese Realpolitik after WWII?

    Are you too scared of China, or too consumed by hate of the US, Johan Galtung?

  2. Deldano says:

    I have now taken to reading Krogh before reading Galtung in the comment section and the Krogh rarely disappoints to omit clear statements by Galtung critical of China.

    Galtung wrote in TMS about the FALL of CHINA:
    https://www.transcend.org/tms/2011/10/and-then-the-decline-and-fall-of-china/

    Just a few days ago Galtung wrote:
    China: the suppression of autonomy for Tibetans, Uighurs, Inner Mongolians; and the lifting up from the bottom 400 million, 1991-2004.

    Also “E.g. the people killed in the streets of Budapest by Russian tanks were not killed by “US Realpolitik”. You know this every well, but still continue with your lies.” is KROGH’s point. As a long time reader of this editorial, I am quite sure, that the ONLY time I read this claim on this editorial was in the comment section by you Mr. Krogh.

    So who is lying now?

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Deldano,

      Oh, so you are claiming that Galtung actually *believes* that the poor Hungarians killed under Soviet tanks are killed by the US?

      Now thats certainly interesting – and given that plenty of the killed on the list were actually killed by or with Soviet and/or Chinese weapons, soldiers or support, bur that Galtung is too scared to acknowledge this, it just confirms my point. Galtungs unhinged hatred of the US. Because where are the lists of the millions killed by the Chinese?

  3. Christian Herø says:

    This is what I can find on this number of victims. http://www.globalresearch.ca/us-has-killed-more-than-20-million-people-in-37-victim-nations-since-world-war-ii/5492051

    The numbers does not differentiate between direct war, proxy Wars, or influence to overthrow governments.

    To encourage resistance under the premises of aid soon to come should be counted. But I doubt that such a promise existed. The Soviet plans for eastern Europe I would believe was well known in Washington.
    The 3000 could of course be omitted from the study.

    He also makes a point about the US beeing a delogatocracy and how this effectively blocks any real democracy. Check the TED Talk about Lesterland to see how the US political system is broken.

    As for not commenting on China I believe Galtung meant to write about
    US foreign policy in relation to the current candidates running for
    nominees and later the general
    election. Not writing about China or
    any other country in this article is
    not the same as saying that other
    states have issues as well.

    On and end note however you count the numbers no other nation (maybe the USSR) are responsible for more interventions and casualties in war as a foreign policy tool than the US.

    Living in Norway, a Nato ally I grew up fearing the USSR, a real threat at the time. If a grew up an a Non US ally in the Middle East, Asia or in South, Middle America I guess the US would be my childhood fear…

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Christian Herø,

      Galtung repeat the “20 million” lie on a weekly basis. Where is the corresponding figures from China from his hands?

  4. Christian Herø says:

    I don’t know where those numbers are. And they are not relevant in this article. Again not being able to get such data and then present them does not make the data about the consequences US lead Wars and other actions invalid. If you despute the numbers then address them and the research behind the data collection and qualification.

  5. Thomas Krogh says:

    Christian Herø

    Point is that Galtung repeats this figure over and over and over again. Check out this site.

    It is no longer an argument. Or even an attempt to argue. It has become a matra. A reflex. Something Galtung just rambles of his mind. A factoid as his “US is essential bankrupt” lie (he conveniently ignore the US < 2.4% external debt-to-assets ratio).

    So my point is basically. When will Galtung stop taking himself so seriously, and start working the facts instead?

    Could it be that the facts will collapse his narrative? That the US is not on the verge of a collapse? That the BRICS vision was just a fata mogana? And so on.

    Galtung is wishing. He is not analyzing.

    • Christian Herø says:

      And just today it was published that future pension obligations may bankrupt us cities and states. Stanford University states that there is a shortage of 3.4000 billion dollars to cover public sector pensions. Cities and states will require bailouts the next 5 to 10 years. Republican Devin Nunes has long requested a new method for public access accounting saying today’s regime allows for tricks to hide deficits.
      Note that underfunded government pensions are not a US problem only. Is a world wide problem.

      Also private debt is the next highest in the US only beaten by Norway when comparing OECD countries.

      UN sets US debt to asset ratio to about 0.5 to 1. A positive figure you might think. But the asset is all natural resources, buildings, infrastructure and mostly people and future produce. It is about 7 times US foreign debt. (US has gone from the worlds largest creditor to the largest debitor the last 50 years). Lending against this assest is unwise as the US (as any country) is leaking resources, their beeing used and not replaced. And the assets that are not people are mostly not liquid. As one commented in an article (Time Magazine) you will not sell Grand Canyon or Rhode Island to pay of debt. The debt to asset ratio may somewhat comforting for an indebt nation, but in my opinion is a false sence of security.

  6. Deldano says:

    You seem obsessed Krogh. Obsessed with Galtung landing a majestic faceplant. You’re too late. He has made history already. He founded peacestudies in 1959. You’re simply too late! Galtung predicted in 1980 that the USSR “will implode before 1990 starting at it’s weakest point – the Berlin wall.” Check your history books for how accurate his prediction was. Kissinger was on a flight to Hawaii and claims he was flabberghasted when he landed and the wall was gone. Krogh… you are beginning to bore me.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Deldano,

      Oh no I’m sorry, I just find it funny and interesting – and somewhat sad – to watch Galtung spin himself into being unable to extract himself from his own prejudice. When you end up endlessly repeating yourself as Galtung does (20 million blah blah US bad blah blah China good blah blah silk road blah blah), you invariable invite people to wonder what happened.

      Galtung has certainly been throwing around predictions, but some of them are just sad relics of his own imagination. His turning the blind eye to the excesses and fascisme of Maoist China (http://www.city-journal.org/html/peace-racket-13030.html) is probably one of the things that still linger – being fed, and in turn feeding – by his burning hate of the US: We are just witnesing the old memes on repeat.

      Anyone wanna bet against that we will see Galtung repeat the same memes again and again?

      No, I didn’t think so. :-D

      • Per-Stian says:

        If you were more knowledgeable about Galtung’s speeches and books, you would know that he doesn’t hate the United States. What he doesn’t like is the emphasis on conflict and war to get their way. Not an unreasonable view, I might add.

        Incidentally, you would also know that he doesn’t pull his punches on China and Russia, and in decades gone by, he was highly critical of the Soviet Union, when much of the left would turn a blind eye to some of the horrors going on.

        Quite frankly, he isn’t the person you think he is, nor does he have the views you wrongly attribute to him.

        But I find this personality focus a distraction. What the last few posts have dealt with is the potential positives with the US, which funnily enough has gone unnoticed by Krogh. It’s an attempt to show a more Asian thinking, where things aren’t just good/bad, but that although the US are involved in some pretty darn “bad” things, it’s not all they are about, and there are positives too, that can become more influential in the future, and if one took the positives of for instance US and China, we could arrive at a much better world than the one we currently live in. I’d say that is more important to focus on.

  7. Per-Stian says:

    Dear God, I see Krogh is still waging jihad on Galtung then. Whatever floats your boat, I guess.

    Whether you like him or not, and you clearly don’t, the world needs more people like Johan Galtung, with focus on reconciliation and “deep peace” than threats, war and bombs as an answer to just about anything.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Per-Stian

      We certainly need people like Galtung. In order to learn. But if the Galtung’s of this world end up being unable to admit errors and unable to move away from the endless cycles of repetitive memes – as we see from Galtung now – they become irrelevant.

      • Deldano says:

        Sure. Galtung is irrelevant! That is why he is nominated for the nobel peace prize. And you aren’t.

      • Have you seen the pic that Malvin posted down under this thread? One pic is worth a thousand words. Galtung irrelevant? Liar? Obsessed? Think again. Do yourself a favor.

  8. Thomas Krogh says:

    Per-Stian

    I am familiar with Galtung’s books and other writings. And in general they tend to support my view of him. He is a prolific myrid-interested writer, but still he is controlled by his own blind spots.

    As for your points:

    ” What he doesn’t like is the emphasis on conflict and war to get their way. Not an unreasonable view, I might add.”

    Oh, I fully agree that there is a valid point about conflict and war. However, I find it telling that he put the “37 countries, 20 million killed” lie on autopilot when it coems to the US, but is completely silent when it comes to providing similar figures from – e.g. – Chiba. Using the same (faulty) way of calculating “kills”, you could easily come to 40 million for China. Yet Galtung never mention these. Whereas – as we have seen – the “20 million” is so common it could be his own tagline.

    And this merely proves my point. If Galtung was really interested in why and how people were killed, and the mechanisms – the empire vs republic constructions etc. – he would allocate just as much time and space to the other killers. But he doesn’t do that. Because the focus is not on the 20 (or 40) million killed. It is on the US. Which is exactly my point. His “20 million” lie gives him away.

    “Incidentally, you would also know that he doesn’t pull his punches on China and Russia, and in decades gone by, he was highly critical of the Soviet Union, when much of the left would turn a blind eye to some of the horrors going on.”

    To a certain extend yes, but as you will know from his writings and e.g. the link I provided earlier, his appraisals of mass-murdere such as Mao are nothing less than disgusting. As is is more or less permanent glowing support for the one-party Cuban dictatorship and ruler-for-life Fidel Castro. For standing up to the US (naturally).

    “Quite frankly, he isn’t the person you think he is, nor does he have the views you wrongly attribute to him.”

    That may certainly be so. And in that case I’m looking forward for him to prove it. But repeating tired lies such as the “20 million!” and “essential bankrupt” memes certainly only reinforces my views.

    “But I find this personality focus a distraction. What the last few posts have dealt with is the potential positives with the US, which funnily enough has gone unnoticed by Krogh. It’s an attempt to show a more Asian thinking, where things aren’t just good/bad, but that although the US are involved in some pretty darn “bad” things, it’s not all they are about, and there are positives too, that can become more influential in the future, and if one took the positives of for instance US and China, we could arrive at a much better world than the one we currently live in. I’d say that is more important to focus on.”

    Valid points, and I certainly would welcome a broader, deeper and much more comprehensive discussion of Asia and the different interactions and possibilities – and risks – that carries. But that also require us to be just as critical – and apply the same amount of critcism and critical thinking – towards China, as Galtung believes he is towards the US. The much higher number of “kills” (compared to the US) from Chinese internal and external politics, the much more critical Chinese debt issue, the collapse of the “growing BRICS, declining US/West” narrative, the move from manufacturing to a service-based economy and so on, must be part of this discussion. And these are the areas where Galtung fails. Because he is too mired in his own narrative.

  9. Werner T. Meyer says:

    Those interested in the rank disequilibria of the empire may also like Michael Mann’s book Incoherent Empire. Mann uses the same status configuration as Johan Galtung: military, economy, politics (state) and culture (he calls ideology). He also offers a 4-volume History of Social Power featuring the same 4 sources of Power.

    Yours

    Werner T. Meyer

  10. Deldano says:

    We got your point Krogh. You seem to be a prolific writer yourself with enormous insights into how the world really works. Why don’t you give it a hand and enlighten us here by providing the editor here with pieces of your own for us to read on a weekly basis? Let go of Galtung and deliver your own stuff. Whether the editors accept it is at their discretion but instead of boring us to death with your repetitive narratives on Galtung’s deficits, why don’t you do something constructive and write about the things you know about which Galtung does not know about? According to your own claims here you know a lot about Galtungs blind spots. So for people who come here to read Galtung etc. you could actually complete their views. Growing somewhat tired of this repetitive harping on stuff you will not be able to change anyhow.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Deldano

      The whole point of having a reply function on a political site is (I assume) to invite opposing views to be expressed. Yes I know that many may prefer only loyalists write, but IMHO that is a waste of time.

      So yes, I comment on Galtung’s writings, and if you find my replies repetitive, then you might consider *why*, and if one of the causes might be that Galtung has spun himself into endlessly repeating stuff such as his “20 million/37 countries” lie. If nothing else you should be thankful for that eye-opener.

      And yes, of course I will present stuff to complement Galtung’s. Which is what I have done, including the analysis of the private-debt mountain that will hit China much the same way as it hit Japan and the US. An analysis that explains why Galtung’s over-simplyfied view of China needs revision.

      You may certainly be more than welcome to help here, if you wish, and if you want to do more than just critize me for disagreeing with Galtung….

  11. Christian Herø says:

    One approach that you Krogh could do is to sum up the deaths resulting Maos cultural revolution and Sallins communism. The numbers for China is hard to get at but estimate is said to be between 20 to 80 millions. A huge numbers.
    Over the years the numbers of deaths caused by states and dictators has been modified and that to a lower number.
    That could be the case for the number for US caused deaths as well.

    Should we only count the deaths for direct involment the number I’ve seen is 10 to 15 millions. Still a high number and higher than Hitlers Germany.

    I must repeat again this, not mentioning the killings done by other states and dictators does not mean that they have not happened or are unimportant.

    But perhaps they should be mentioned so to reflect that the company the US holds when it comes to killing is by and large dictatorships and totalitarian regimes.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Christian Herø

      OK, but what is then “direct involvement”?

      An example:

      Yes, The US was involved – direct involved – in the Korean War, a war that ended up costing millions their lives.

      And using Lucas’ (and Galtung’s) definition, this is all the US’s fault. Despite the US being only one of several actors, and that the initial aggression was a North Korean invasion of the South.

      So exactly what does this tell us? Counting it all as “the US’ responsibility”, and repeating thie lie on a weekly basis.

      What is the exact point, what is the reason and what is the purpose of this?

      Given the dynamics and origins of the Korean War, the responsibility is much more on the North Korean (with the Chinese/Soviet backers) side, so why is it important for Galtung to deny this?

      You may state that killings done by other states are not unimportant, but then why Galtung’s need to lie that a war such as the Korean is the fault of the US alone?

      • Deldano says:

        Your factual points are well taken Krogh. But there is something pathological about the imputations you like to smear all over this site. It seems that there is something else eating at you, just what it is one can not tell, but someone (Mr. Meyer?) in the comment section shared this link http://www.hoelseth.com/nobility/nobility_survey.html which is quite instructive in many regards regarding the monicker you have chosen to communicate with.

      • Werner T. Meyer says:

        Dear Deldano: Yes, I supplied the story with this link. It was my attempt to make something up that fitted a previous discussion thread in intellectual depth and I labeled my contribution as the ultimate DECONSTRUCTION of a conspiracy theory. Not something CONSTRUCTIVE, I admit. The only thing I can independently confirm, is that Johan knew of his noble family history before. Who cares about the peasants.

        Sorry
        Werner T. Meyer

  12. Here is an editorial by the hater-of-america-in-chief according to Internet agitator Krogh:

    https://www.transcend.org/tms/2011/05/america-the-beautiful-2/

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Antonio,

      OK, so Galtung likes the Americans. So what is your explanation for hsi 20 million/37 countrieslie?

      Where and why does his yin/yang analysis fail in this particular matter?

  13. Thomas Krogh says:

    Deldano

    May I suggest a mirror? Describing disagreement as “pathological” is interesting. It suggests a level of inability to accept other views that by and in itself leans towards a diagnose. The world must be a challenge for you?

    And I’m sorry. Being Danish and Egalitarian, Norwegian Nobility is ranked just below watching paint dry in my ranking of interests….

  14. Deldano says:

    As far as I am concerned, after reading Galtung’s book Methodology and Ideology by Galtung, it is safe to say that this Johan Galtung is pretty much one of the smartest men alive on this planet right now as sociology and social analysis are concerned. And all this bickering about whether you like the data he quotes or not is secondary to his theoretical and methodological genius. Galtung’s main value and relevance to third parties such us ourselves has been to teach us higher sociology. Now scholars always have a choice. To study or not to study an academic. From my experience, shitting all over another academic is either an upwards career move, an attempt at political or otherwise inspired character assassination or ultimately a waste of time. Krogh must be either pissed personally by something Galtung touched him with, driven by self agrandizement or be bored out of his own existence. And as I have said before: rambling about weekly 3 page renditions by a man who has written entire books about the points he barely scrapes in his editorials is really silly.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Deldano

      Galtung is without doubt smart. And extremely prolific. But he is not wise. Wise men don’t lie, don’t promote brainless conspiracy theories and don’t machanically repeat pathetic memes over and over and over again.

      What I find interesting is Galtung’s inability to admit when he is wrong and his followers insistence that he is an unfailling genius, who’s points and arguments are Not To Be Questioned.

      Galtung has a lot of valid points, good insights and could be much stronger force for good, but – just as his good collegue and equally smart companion, Jan Øberg – his points are drowning in unnecessary lies and foaming anti-americanism.

      If he could apply his one yin-yang view and techniques without the burning hate, his voice would be infinitely stronger.

      • Deldano says:

        Nonsense. You need to study more. And become more human. Travel more. Learn more languages. Love humanity more. Forget Galtung. Think for yourself. Appreciate multipolar politics and culture as much as you appreciate mainstream economics. The LSE has excellent seminars on these subjects. And most importantly, your loyalties are also becoming quite transparent Mr. Krogh. Galtung’s loyalties are also known. The difference is there! Nowhere else. Thou shalt not kill, exploit, discriminate, marginalize and justify any of the above. That is what Galtung has been writing for the past 40 years. You just got on board it seems.

    • Per-Stian says:

      The only burning hate I see here is yours for Galtung. You read things that simply aren’t there, and then harp on about some imaginary points, thinking repeating them 10 times a week will magically make them true.

      I find it hard to believe you have actually read the man’s work. You jump to conclusions based on a few lines in these short weekly posts. Galtung has written entire books, often several, about the topics he barely touches the surface on here. Try reading them. With an open mind. I don’t swallow everything Galtung or Chomsky or anybody else says raw, but I have learned a lot from both of them, and many others, and typically when I look deeper into things that look questionable, it turns out to be true.

      Whether the number of people the United States has killed is 10, 20, 30 millions, or some other number, is, as absurd as it sounds, of less importance than the fact they have waged war for decades. It has become routine to either threaten with war or wage war. If that isn’t a problem, then I don’t know what is.

      To touch on something else, just look at the excellent work the Intercept has done on the vastly expanded assassination program, otherwise known as drones. A marvellous recruitment gift for IS(IS) and other extremist groups. No other country on the planet run programmes like that, especially on that kind of scale. It’s a big problem, not just in the present, but also for the future, and then you have the development of robots/drones that kill without being controlled by a human.

      I’d much rather prefer a world where a country didn’t do these things.

      • Deldano says:

        :-(!

      • Thomas Krogh says:

        Per-Stian

        “The only burning hate I see here is yours for Galtung. You read things that simply aren’t there, and then harp on about some imaginary points, thinking repeating them 10 times a week will magically make them true.”

        Uhm actually I’m arguing against a specific point. Galtung’s oft-repeated “20 million/37 countries” lie, that he re-iterates over and over and over again. Did you check the frequency with which is harps on?

        “I find it hard to believe you have actually read the man’s work. You jump to conclusions based on a few lines in these short weekly posts. Galtung has written entire books, often several, about the topics he barely touches the surface on here. Try reading them. With an open mind. I don’t swallow everything Galtung or Chomsky or anybody else says raw, but I have learned a lot from both of them, and many others, and typically when I look deeper into things that look questionable, it turns out to be true.”

        Well, then ask yourself why Galtung has this near-manical need to repeat lies and conspiracy theories over and over again. If his point are generally sound, why doesn’t he focus on them, then?

        Galtung claims inspiration from Gandhi. Yet Gandhi was extemely explicit in his condemnation of lies.

        “Whether the number of people the United States has killed is 10, 20, 30 millions, or some other number, is, as absurd as it sounds, of less importance than the fact they have waged war for decades. It has become routine to either threaten with war or wage war. If that isn’t a problem, then I don’t know what is.”

        In that case – that the number of killed are important – why is Galtung *completely* avoiding, say, China’s responsibility for these or similar – kills? Where is the “80 million, 37 countries” statement covering China? Because Galtung is obsessed with the US.

        Can you spot the problem?

        “To touch on something else, just look at the excellent work the Intercept has done on the vastly expanded assassination program, otherwise known as drones. A marvellous recruitment gift for IS(IS) and other extremist groups. No other country on the planet run programmes like that, especially on that kind of scale. It’s a big problem, not just in the present, but also for the future, and then you have the development of robots/drones that kill without being controlled by a human.”

        No other country? Sorry but that is bunk. While it might be much more “under the horizon”, given the control over media China has, Beijing is running a titanic drone program:

        http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/china/uav.htm

  15. Thomas Krogh says:

    Deldano

    May I suggest that you start reading what I write, rather than inventing stuff?

    I’m – still – merely pointing out where Galtung is shooting himself in the foot, and why this runs counter to what he attemps to say.

    If you consider critizing Galtung to be off-limits and your only explanation for such “heresy” is lack of empathy etc, then you really only prove my point. Again.

    The road to understanding and appreciating the multi-polar world, the countless cultures, languages and people, goes through understanding, through truth and through accepting diverging points-of-view.

    Lies, conspiracy theories, embedded hate (Galtung’sk anti-americanism etc), mis-guided loyalties etc are only road blocks.

    Open your eyes and learn. You will not regret it.

  16. Deldano says:

    So now you’re conceding that you’re obsessed with Galtung’s feet Krogh. I would bet my toes he does not own a gun. So that particular concern of yours for Galtung potentially shooting at his own feet is barely plausible. Your obsession with Galtung is revealing itself to border on fantasmagorical foot-fetishism and unsurprisingly involves gun-violence too… sad.

    • Thomas Krogh says:

      Deldano

      I’m sorry the metaphore was too complicated for you. But at least it gave you an excuse not to address the issue itself. Happy? Can you do it again?

  17. TMS webmaster says:

    Here’s something from our archive you might find interesting.

    Dr. Johan Galtung, Guest Speaker, Department Of Political Science, United States Air Force Academy, March 1988

  18. Thomas Krogh says:

    Antonio

    “Have you seen the pic that Malvin posted down under this thread?”

    Yes, and?

    “One pic is worth a thousand words. Galtung irrelevant? Liar? Obsessed? Think again. Do yourself a favor”

    I would be much more happy if Galtung didn’t lie, manipulate and post zany conspiracy theories. Or support war crimes such as the Russian annexation of Crimea.

    But as long as he does, I see no reason to change my mind on Galtung. Even though a handful of other commentators think he is beyond criticism of any kind. Actually exactly that kind of deification confirms even more the need for critique.