I've been speculating a great deal lately on the very strange messages being sent by the United Kingdom to the USA, and that Britain is in a unique position to reassert a much more influential role within the western alliance system. Chiefly, and briefly put, my reasons for thinking that Britain may be contemplating a sweeping paradigm shift in its whole cultural and geopolitical strategy over the next few decades, a shift away from its "special relationship" with the USA, and equally, a shift away from its involvement with the European Union.
Specifically, the reasons that one might entertain such a direction for British policy are coming from strange places within British circles of power and their media organs themselves. For example, the Economist recently ran an op-ed piece about the calcification of the American oligarchy, and the fact that the power "elite" of America seems to be locked into boxes of foreign and domestic policy in which no change to the status quo can be contemplated: want more socialism? Vote Bernie Sanders. Want more corporate socialism? vote for any Republithug. Is it really necessary to run yet another tired and dimwitted member of the Bush family against equally tired Hillary? And so on and so on.
Then there was the BBC's Worricker Trilogy about MI-5 analyst Johnny Warricker, who comes into possession of a file indicating that a British prime minister with the initials of A.B. had knowledge of a secret global gulag of American torture camps. During the first episode of the trilogy, Page Eight, the script has MI5 analysts questioning the value of the "special relationship" with America, particularly as the UK shares more intelligence than it gets in return.
Well, in that vein, consider this article from RT, shared by many regular readers here:
I noticed in particular these comments:
After meeting with President Rouhani on Monday, Hammond said “a new phase” has been entered in the search for an end to the Syrian conflict which will include “the two most important and influential players in Syria – Iran and Russia.”
Hammond acknowledged there were fundamental differences in policy over whether Syrian president Bashar al-Assad should remain – with the UK seeing no future for Assad as leader – but added that “if you don’t talk you can’t make progress, and we are now talking.”
As the article notes, the U.K. and Iran have a recent history of deep mutual distrust, so an embassy reopening is hardly signifiant, nor a signal, of any deep paradigm change.
What is peculiar is that the RT article contains no mention at all of the USA in the constellation of the three nations Secretary Hammond thinks should be involved in resolving the Syrian issue. Naturally enough, Hammond echoes the Washington lline that Assad has got to go; but Washington's presence here is only implicit, not explicit. Put this together with the U.K.'s quick response to join China's Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank, its quiet messages via the Economist and Worricker on the BBC, and the message is that London is not too happy with Washington. If that reading be true, then its a geopolitical and cultural earthquake, and a measure of just how insane and out of control Washington's "policy" has become.
Time will tell, of course, if the United Kingdom is indeed embarking on a more Washington-independent foreign policy, but for the moment, London is issuing som typically subtle British signals.
See you on the flip side...