15 Cases: Constructive vs Destructive U.S. Foreign Policies


Johan Galtung – TRANSCEND Media Service

12 Feb 2018

The right column is sadly familiar; add more recent cases.

The left column also carries an element of sadness but nothing really radical; more like common sense that could easily be translated into political practice.

And yet it does not happen, to the detriment of the parties concerned: the USA and its relations to the world. USA wants to be feared but reaps hatred with right column politics. Does it want to be loved?

A theory is something tested along its edges (Quine); what you deduce from the theory–and to me the key “edge”–is its action-consequences.


REAL      R



Encourage local saving banks

Publish M2  Check Fed Reserve

Tax speculation  Drop bonuses

Outlaw basic needs speculation

Democratic control of central banks, state or private

Mixed world currency

More F than Real growth

More money than value

Serving loans not people

Countries in debt bondage

Globalization through privatized central banks

US$ world reserve currency

TERRORISM Identify their just goals

Publish Atta  Who did 9/11?

Extra-judicial execution

SOCO-Drones  Covert war



Palestine recognized; and

A two states solution; and

A Middle East Community MEC Israel and 5 Arab neighbors

1967 borders with revisions; and

Org for Sec Coop West Asia

Tail wagging dog:

Israel wagging USA;

AIPAC wagging Congress

Judeo-Christianity is anti-Islam.

Danger: Extreme US anti-semitism

LIBYA Self-determination for parts, Federalism with democracy Continued anarchy

Unitary state illusion

SYRIA Self-determination for parts,

Federalism with democracy

Attack; SCO response?

split Syria, rule parts

IRAQ Self-determination for parts,

(Con)federalism with democracy

Kurdish autonomous communities

Withdrawal only:

no rebuilding,

no compensation

IRAN Conciliation for 1953,

Middle East nuclear free zone

Cooperation on non-fossil energy

Attack, SCO response?

No Iran nuclear arms

Controlling Iran oil?

PAKISTAN Pashtun autonomy, drop Durand  Self-determination in Kashmir

Indian-Pakistani-Kashmiri parts

Building a Durand fence

Extrajudicial execution

SOCO-Drones  Covert war

AFGHANISTAN A Central Asian Community

Federation  Local autonomies

OIC-UNSC joint peacekeeping

Nonaligned, no bases

Withdrawal only;

no rebuilding,

no compensation

keeping troops, bases

KOREA Peace Treaty with N Korea

Normalization USA-N Korea

Korea as nuclear free zone

Marginalizing N Korea

US-SK military exercises

Breaking agreements

CHINA Open high level dialogue,

Mutual learning in economics

Civil and economic rights

Encircling, sub-sat-navy


civil rights only

JAPAN Japan in NE Asian Community

Good relations to USA, APEC+

USA pulls out of Okinawa

Impeding conciliation

Keeping Japan as client

Subverting A9

AFRICA Welcome African Unity

Build with China E-W highway


Military intervention

LATIN AMERICA Welcome CELAC integration

Equity Latin/Anglo-America

Normalization USA-Cuba

Military intervention

Supporting coups

CIA micro-management

WORLD All human rights conventions,

across state borders

National self-determination

Dialogue of civilizations

Stronger UN, with parliament

Civil-political only,

within state borders

Unitary state models

Western universalism

US exceptionalism


Johan Galtung, a professor of peace studies, dr hc mult, is founder of TRANSCEND International and rector of TRANSCEND Peace University. Prof. Galtung has published more than 1500 articles and book chapters, over 500 Editorials for TRANSCEND Media Service, and more than 170 books on peace and related issues, of which more than 40 have been translated to other languages, including 50 Years-100 Peace and Conflict Perspectives published by TRANSCEND University Press. More information about Prof. Galtung and all of his publications can be found at transcend.org/galtung.


This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 12 Feb 2018.

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3 Responses to “15 Cases: Constructive vs Destructive U.S. Foreign Policies”

  1. Johan Høljer says:

    Extremely interesting but the tables seem more like a kind of brainstorming session written down than a research paper? What is meant by “Publish Atta Who did 9/11”? And what does “Publish M2” mean.

    The left collum reads like common sense, the right like stereotypical modern american behaviour (started with JFK), although it started somewhat in 56-60 with Eisenhower too, and its stereotypically poor outcomes for all involved, including the USA!

  2. Jon Stefansson says:

    Ok but why stop at the US? Why not make similar columns for Putin’s Russia and for China?

    Obviously all major powers in the world have comperable dichtomies.


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