“SPLENDID ISOLATION”: THE REVOLT AGAINST UNIPOLARISM HAS ...August 11, 2014
This is another article that I not only decided to include this week in my usual trolling through Zero Hedge's site, but that many of you also saw, and shared in emails (and again, thank you!). There is a steady, though quiet, seldom-reported-in-the-western-lamestream-media. revolt going on, and the revolt is precisely against American "unipolarism," the polite euphemism that has been adopted for an out-of-control, insanely counter-intuitive foreign policy and international financial policy coming out of the USA. Here's the article, and it's just jam-packed with bad news for American neo-con unipolarists:
Now, in case you missed all that, here are the salient points:
"In recent weeks France has defied US demands not to build Mistrals for Russia, has questioned dollar imperialism and the Petrodollar, and has blasted the US banking regulator's fines as "accelerating the decline of the dollar." So it is likely not a huge surprise that ahead of the G-20 meeting of world leaders later in the year, The FT reports, France has gathered support to challenge US regulators imposing heavy penalties on foreign banks. Berlin, London and Rome have backed Paris in its push to have its concerns about so-called US extraterritoriality discussed when leaders of the world’s top 20 economies meet hoping to bring "more proportionality" to bank fines. With allies like this.."
And then there was this:
"As a gentle reminder, Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa are all members of the G-20 and, we suspect, would not be too worried backing any such coordinated actions against US extraterritoriality."
And this from France's central bank president:
Q. Doesn't the role of the dollar as an international currency create systemic risk?
Noyer: 'Beyond [the BNP] case, increased legal risks from the application of U.S. rules to all dollar transactions around the world will encourage a diversification from the dollar. BNP Paribas was the occasion for many observers to remember that there has been a number of sanctions and that there would certainly be others in the future. A movement to diversify the currencies used in international trade is inevitable. Trade between Europe and China does not need to use the dollar and may be read and fully paid in euros or renminbi. Walking towards a multipolar world is the natural monetary policy, since there are several major economic and monetary powerful ensembles. China has decided to develop the renminbi as a settlement currency. The Bank of France was behind the popular ECB-PBOC swap and we have just concluded a memorandum on the creation of a system of offshore renminbi clearing in Paris. We have very strong cooperation with the PBOC in this field. But these changes take time. We must not forget that it took decades after the United States became the world's largest economy for the dollar to replace the British pound as the first international currency. But the phenomenon of U.S. rules expanding to all USD-denominated transactions around the world can have an accelerating effect.' (Emphasis in the original)
"In other words, the head of the French central bank, and ECB member, Christian Noyer, just issued a direct threat to the world's reserve currency (for now), the US Dollar."
"Oil major Total's chief executive Christophe de Margerie was responding to questions about calls by French policymakers to find ways at EU level to bolster the use of the euro in international business following a record U.S. fine for BNP.
" "There is no reason to pay for oil in dollars," he said. He said the fact that oil prices are quoted in dollars per barrel did not mean that payments actually had to be made in that currency." (Emphasis in the original)
...and finally, this:
"French Finance Minister Michel Sapin says that now is the right time to bolster the use of the euro in transactions outside the U.S. Sapin speaks in an interview with Bloomberg News in Aix-en-Provence, France.
'We sell ourselves aircraft in dollars. Is that really necessary? I don’t think so,” Sapin says, adding "I think a rebalancing is possible and necessary, not just regarding the euro but also for the big currencies of the emerging countries, which account for more and more of global trade.'"(Emphasis in the original)
In other words, Paris, in the form of the French Minister of Finance, and in the form of the French central bank president, have told Washington, in no uncertain terms, "We've had it!" And now they want to settle their fighter aircraft and aircraft carrier sales and other weapons sales, and their oil purchases, and so on, in units of account - see our blog on the Merkel-Putin negotiations over the Ukraine earlier this past week - denominated in the Euro or reminbi.
And France, as the article notes, is backed by Rome and Berlin, and the BRICSA nations will be there (and doubtless not objecting to the tune being sung by France, Italy, and Germany). What's very notable, however, and indeed, the most significant development here, is London appears to be going along with the agenda.
To put it country simple, even the British are fed up, and for Perfide Albion to be fed up with its equally perfidious Albionesque one-time colonies is perhaps the biggest seismic pulse coming out of Europe right now in this regard; forget about Rome, Paris, and Berlin. What that signals is that the "special relationship," eulogized and first entertained as a private geopolitical fantasia by the likes of Cecil Rhodes, Lord Milner, Earl Grey, Colonel House, Wilson, Churchill, and Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt, or even the warm fuzzy thermonuclear glow of Harold MacMillan and John Kennedy, can no longer be taken for granted.
The USA, having antagonized not only the rank and file but also the political and elite classes of Russia, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, Argentina, Brazil, India, Australia, not to mention helping to orchestrate a beehive of radical Islamic chaos in the Middle East, and courting disaster in a remilitarizing Japan, having sat idly by while South Korea and China negotiated yet another bi-lateral currency trade agreement, can now perhaps call upon its strategic reserve alliances with Andora, Monte Carlo, Lichtenstein, Guatemala and Macedonia to re-balance the situation. Truly, I don't think we've seen this kind of geopolitical, financial, and diplomatic insanity since...well, since Earl Grey... with a blustering ham-fisted USA playing the updated and modernized role of Kaiser Wilhelm....
Which makes me wonder: just who is playing Edward VII in London now?
See you on the flip side...