Blog Feeds

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Moveable Feast Cafe 2019/12/06 ? Open Thread Fri Dec 06, 2019 08:30 | Herb Swanson
2019/12/06 08:30:01Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of

offsite link Brazil?s systemic chaos amid increasing tensions in the international system Fri Dec 06, 2019 08:00 | The Saker
By Fabio Reis Vianna for The Saker Blog In 1914, Countess Kleinmichel, a typical representative of the Russian aristocracy, offered her nieces what for her would be a “modest” fantasy

offsite link French Black Bloc?s utter uselessness? except to the French government Thu Dec 05, 2019 23:34 | The Saker
by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog On December 5th France?s long, long, LONG-awaited General Strike against austerity measures began, and it was a huge success: 90% of trains were

offsite link NATO Summit in London: Culmination of disagreement Thu Dec 05, 2019 19:29 | The Saker
by Alpha for The Saker Blog The NATO Summit, dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the North Atlantic Alliance, was held in London on December 3 and 4 and was

offsite link Book review: Andrei Martyanov?s ?The (real) Revolution in Military Affairs? Thu Dec 05, 2019 18:05 | The Saker
[This article was written for the Unz Review] Last year I reviewed Andrei Martyanov’s book “Losing Military Supremacy: the Myopia of American Strategic Planning” for the Unz Review.  In that

The Saker >>

Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

offsite link Latest Updates Thu Nov 21, 2019 20:32 | Human Rights

offsite link US Holds China To Account For Human Rights Violations Sun Oct 13, 2019 19:12 | Human Rights

offsite link UN Human Rights Council Should Address Human Rights Crisis in Cambodia Sat Aug 31, 2019 13:41 | Human Rights

offsite link Fijian women still face Human Rights violations Mon Aug 26, 2019 18:49 | Human Rights

offsite link Saudi Human Rights Violation Fri Aug 09, 2019 20:41 | Human Rights

Human Rights in Ireland >>

Cedar Lounge
For lefties too stubborn to quit

offsite link Fear of Flying 10:26 Sat Dec 07, 2019 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link This Weekend I?ll Mostly be Listening to Songs and Music about? Flying 06:55 Sat Dec 07, 2019 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link Explicitly anti-democratic? 13:05 Fri Dec 06, 2019 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link The world of work: life expectancy 11:04 Fri Dec 06, 2019 | WorldbyStorm

offsite link 163 of Britain?s top economists support the Labour Manifesto: why is that not being plastered across... 09:53 Fri Dec 06, 2019 | guestposter

Cedar Lounge >>

Dublin Opinion
Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting

offsite link Some Thoughts on the Brexit Joint Report 11:50 Sat Dec 09, 2017


offsite link Notes for a Book on Money and the Irish State - The Marshall Aid Program 15:10 Sat Apr 02, 2016

offsite link The Financial Crisis:What Have We Learnt? 19:58 Sat Aug 29, 2015

offsite link Money in 35,000 Words or Less 21:34 Sat Aug 22, 2015

Dublin Opinion >>

The Great Chess Game

category international | anti-war / imperialism | opinion/analysis author Friday October 12, 2012 21:27author by Luke Eastwood Report this post to the editors

A look at what really going on in global politics behind the facade.

Everyone is aware of a multitude of problems that besets our world, however the nature of these problems and why they exist is distorted by the media and by governments all over the world. Our leaders, corporate heads, military top-brass etc. all have a fairly good idea of what is really happening, they just don’t want us – the ignorant masses known as the general public to know what they know.

The multiple crises on this planet are caused by our insane mode of living – one that seems to be dominated by economics. Our way of life (unfortunately now for most of the world) depends on an ever-expanding economic system, for if it is not expanding it is contracting.

This system was all well and good while there was plenty of capacity for continued expansion, but unfortunately for all of us the limits of expansion are not far off. The ‘people in the know’ are well aware of this, although they are not going to admit to anyone outside of their ‘club’ that this is the case, at least not in any direct or honest manner.

Capitalism requires growth and markets to exploit – in the past there were always new markets and new people to exploit, which fueled growth and also the resources needed to run the engine of commerce seemed inexhaustible.

At this point in time the number of new markets is shrinking, the number of people who can be easily exploited is shrinking and the availability of resources is shrinking. So that really doesn’t leave modern ‘civilised’ countries or coalitions of countries with a lot of options with regard to the continued expansion of their economies.

It strikes me that there are only really three options available: 1. Expand the planet and the resources available on it by 50% or more. 2. Reduce the demand on resources and reduce the number of people expecting a fair deal (i.e. not being exploited). 3. Give up on a redundant system that is destined to crash and find a new economic paradigm. Hopefully you will realize that option 1. is my little joke and that option 2. is in the realms of megalomaniac fantasy.

Unfortunately for us, many of the people in powerful positions in the world are hopefully of achieving something equivalent to option 1. (e.g. colonizing Mars) and are quite confident of achieving option 2. and hence are still not even close to considering option 3. It seems that option 2. is the historical precedent for solving economic woes, generally implemented through war and the by-products of this – famine, sickness, relocation and disempowerment etc.

If we look at the current global situation it is clear that there is a struggle for power and resources, which is only partially viewable to the ordinary ‘man in the street’. The intrigues and complexities of this struggle or game are concealed from the average consumer of mainstream media. This has been the case for a long time, which is clearly evidenced by the periodic release of state secrets relating to events of previous decades – in some cases clandestine activities/ambitions of up to a century ago. Despite the clear evidence that we have been continuously lied to in the past by mainstream media and our governments, it seems that many people do not seem to correlate that information with current lying and propaganda.

The truth is that this struggle for dominance and control is like a giant chess game, with USA and it’s allies/friends on one side of the board and Russia/China and their allies/friends on the other. They represent to kings and queens of this game and ultimately decide the strategy and the actions of their ‘pieces’. Countries like Britain, France, Japan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Turkey, India etc. represent the middle ranking pieces – they are important players in the game, they are not instantly expendable but they are coerced or seduced into following the game plan.

The pawns of the game are all the other minor and relatively powerless countries that make up the world. These are all seen as expendable but at times they may be given an inflated sense of their own worth by either or both sides in order to achieve a goal. Of course, like a real pawn, once their purpose has been fulfilled or they are no-longer useful they are thrown to the wolves or just ignored.

Two perfect examples of a pawn are Afghanistan and Iraq – neither were particularly unique strategically, in terms of resources or influential politically or militarily. For a time Iraq seemed important but it was just a piece being played as a piece in a much larger game. Afghanistan seemed important for a while both to the Americans and the Soviets but (in terms of the game) again it is just a fairly resource rich non-entity that needed to be exploited as part of a far greater plan.

What many people in the world do not understand is that this great chess game is about control of resources and their flow around this planet. He who controls the oil, gas, rare-earth metals, uranium, water and food has control of everybody else. The instability in the Middle East may appear to be related to terrorism, the struggle for democracy or religious preferences but this is all just a smoke screen. If we look below the surface we can easily see that this is about transit routes of resources – in particular for oil and gas. The big boys (USA, China and Russia) are jostling for position, their allies want in on the action (as a kickback for helping out) and the fate of the remainder rests on the success of the competing strategies for dominance of the board.

Unfortunately for us, this obsessive game over resources seems to completely ignore the basic premise that we must continue to live in a world of finite resources. Instead of deciding to give up the game and concentrate on finding a way to remodel society in a way that we can sustain our future the game seems to have intensified in recent decades. I would liken this to two men on the Titanic fighting over the silver cutlery while the ship continues to sink! I wonder at what point governments will actually wake up to the fact that these ‘traditional’ solutions can no-longer work in a world where there is nowhere new left to colonize, nowhere new to discover and precious few new resources to find.

Of course people pay lip-service to the ideas of a new paradigm at the UN, at environmental summits etc. but this is really just candy-floss. The big boys and their minions are still focusing most of their energy, political, intellectual and creative resources on fighting to maintain their economies instead of seeking solutions to a glaringly obvious problem.

It’s high time that the ‘superpowers’ and their allies took a serious look at option 3. (a new economic paradigm). Once the penny drops that our system is fatally flawed, the necessity for economic, psychological and physical warfare becomes redundant. Once we truly accept that we cannot have infinite growth, that our planet and human society is in danger of collapse then it should shift our focus away from conflict towards co-operation.

Humans are selfish creatures, we all want the best for ourselves, our family, our town, our tribe, our country – that is just part of human evolution that has enabled us to succeed. However that competitive streak has outlived its purpose and is in fact destroying us. The ultimate in selfishness is really the desire to survive – don’t we all want to survive (and hopefully prosper)? If we are going to fulfill that ultimately selfish wish then it’s actually necessary for us to evolve beyond competing and abandon clearly failed and destructive actions.

Co-operation is the only real hope for humanity. It’s time for the game players to tear up the chess board and throw it away forever. And if our governments do not want to change or listen then it is up to all of us to make sure that they do – for our own selfish desire to live and to have a country and a planet to live on.

Luke Eastwood is a writer and horticulturist, you can read more of his work at

Related Link:
© 2001-2019 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy