Humankind is a strange animal, so advanced technologically yet so backward, ignorant, limited, primitive, so close to the protozoan phase of evolution. A perfect species for the manipulation of public opinion through adequate doses of fear and the repetition of mantras. Pride of place goes to the utterly idiotic expression "Leader of the Free World".
This week SKY News, famous for its "Er...how do they go to the toilet?" reporting and "Hey guys! You looking for some revenge for 9/11?" (sidling up to American soldiers on the first day of the illegal invasion of Iraq), came up with the cherry on the cake as regards idiotic mantras. Speaking about the confusion over Trump's visit to the UK, the commentators lamented that he might visit France first. So what's the problem with that?
And I quote... "As leader of the free world, he should come here first". OK it sounds powerful, but what exactly is that supposed to mean? For a start, it denotes a certain tool-sucking characteristic, does it not, claiming the person elected by the electorate of the USA is "leader" of other countries and their electorates? How can he be a "leader" of anything else if he was elected to govern the United States of America and only the United States of America?
And what's with this "free world" nonsense? Meaning some countries are free and others are not? I suppose those who reiterate such idiotic mantras would not include Russia in the "free" world, but why not?
In Russia there are many political parties to choose from in free and fair elections. United Russia wins because more people vote for it than for the second most popular party, the Communist Party but there are other representatives elected from other parties. As for everything else, people are perfectly free to do what they like. They are free to go out in the morning and have breakfast, they are free to go to a kiosk and drink a refreshing Kvass, they are free to go shopping, to travel around the city, to visit their dacha at the weekend, or fly to another city or travel abroad or spend their holidays in Montenegro, or Turkey, or Spain, or Cuba, or Brazil, or Vietnam or wherever.
Now let us take a look at the so-called "free world" they refer to, meaning the USA and its allies, the closest being France and the UK, which together with their Transltlantic bedmaster, form the FUKUS Axis (France-UK-US). The "free world" probably includes NATO countries (North Atlantic Terrorist Organization) along with its Baltic Fascist worshipping aberrations and a few Eastern European countries where Nazism seems to be making a comeback and the "free world" would certainly include all members of the ASS (Anglo-Saxon Syndicate), including countries such as Australia which is present wherever there is a fight "to keep the Australian people safe" (translation: stick their noses in other people's business and become as hated as the FUKUS Axis).
So as representatives of the "free world", let us take a look at these countries. For a start, NATO countries are forced to spend two per cent of their Gross Domestic Product each and every year on the NATO budget (the industrial-military complex which rules the roost in Washington). How Constitutional is that, a foreign power dictating how national budgets are allocated and controlling national foreign policy?
And what is the collective military spending budget of these wonderfully free countries, so free they have to spend billions buying Washington's toys? It is one point two trillion USA each and every year, which is enough money to eradicate global poverty forever, three times over, in one single annual payment. So, sorry about your hip replacement operation, Mrs. Brown; no money for your cancer therapy Mr. Green, you have heard of palliative care, haven't you? No money for teachers, no money for nurses, no money for hospitals, no money for policemen on the street, but plenty of money for NATO.
So we see being a member of the "free world" means you kowtow to the USA, which tells you how much to spend and on what. When Washington tells you to jump you ask "how high?" And now let us see what these members of the free world do.
For a start, they breach international law, they invade countries outside the auspices of the UNO, they trump up charges using a bought media to dupe a gullible and disinterested public, inventing reasons to go to war, then strafing civilian structures with military hardware, blasting the limbs and faces off kids, blowing their families away, bombing water supplies to deprive babies of a drink of the most precious and basic life-giving substance, targeting the electricity grid "to break their backs" (the civilians) then siding with terrorists on their own lists of proscribed groups. Siding with terrorists who rape nuns, gang-rape little girls before and after they are beheaded and forced to watch their parents being tortured to death, slice the breasts off women in the street and impale little boys on stakes.
And in this marvellous "free" world, are the people free to walk outside anywhere at night, circulate freely at any time in any place without fear of being blown up or mugged or stabbed or kicked to a pulp just for the shit and giggles?
So Trump is "leader of the free world", or the Pied Piper, leader of a bunch of rats, the Chief Jester at the dinner table in some Alice in Wonderland scene with the March Hare and the Mad Hatter presiding over a psychadelic dinner or the Devil himself leading a gaggle of demons on some satanic outing?
*Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey has worked as a correspondent, journalist, deputy editor, editor, chief editor, director, project manager, executive director, partner and owner of printed and online daily, weekly, monthly and yearly publications, TV stations and media groups printed, aired and distributed in Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Portugal, Mozambique and São Tomé and Principe Isles; the Russian Foreign Ministry publication Dialog and the Cuban Foreign Ministry Official Publications. He has spent the last two decades in humanitarian projects, connecting communities, working to document and catalog disappearing languages, cultures, traditions, working to network with the LGBT communities helping to set up shelters for abused or frightened victims and as Media Partner with UN Women, working to foster the UN Women project to fight against gender violence and to strive for an end to sexism, racism and homophobia. A Vegan, he is also a Media Partner of Humane Society International, fighting for animal rights. He is Director and Chief Editor of the Portuguese version of Pravda.Ru.
Europe which is panic-stricken over the consequences of rising energy and food prices could strike a treacherous blow to Ukraine this winter, writes Simon Tisdall for The Guardian.