Fernando Fuster-Fabra's Blog

ABDICACIÓN, PUERTA DE LA TRANSFORMACIÓN DE ESPAÑA

June 3, 2014
Leave a Comment

ABDICACIÓN, PUERTA DE LA TRANSFORMACIÓN DE ESPAÑA.


MANIFIESTO CONTRA TODA DISCRIMINACIÓN Y ODIO

May 16, 2014
Leave a Comment

MANIFIESTO CONTRA TODA DISCRIMINACIÓN Y ODIO.


THE UGLY AMERICAN, 2012

November 4, 2012
1 Comment

The Ugly Americans

 

Ever since the Burdick & Lederer’s novel, The Ugly American, was published in 1958, American candidates to the White House and incumbent Presidents have had a chance to face numerous international problems as leaders who have to assume responsibilities attributed the world’s most powerful nation.

 

Nevertheless, time and time again, one President after another has committed quite a number of errors that have led to what the USA is today.

 

On the verge of next Tuesday’s presidential elections, incumbent President Obama and his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney, have demonstrated that Americans have not wagged away the then Asian foreign vision of “the ugly American”.

 

On the contrary, today, American leaders are seen as “ugly” in continents other than Asia. In the last half century, one after another, the U.S. Presidents have blundered in international affairs in Vietnam & Cambodia, in the Caribbean, in the Middle East, in Africa and in Central & South America.

 

From Kennedy to Obama, all White House tenants have had their Achilles heel. Some succumbed to the temptation of playing God and ended causing civil wars or local ethnic cleansing.

 

At the crossroads of American supremacy, President Obama has not only failed to live up to expectations and to a moral commitment after being awarded the Nobel Prize in 2009, but also has selfishly closed himself into what he sensed was to be a battle for his continuance as President of the United States of America. He has, in many ways, taken as his own the very habits of what was described in the novel as “the ugly American”.

 

Regretfully, his adversary is no better off. Mitt Romney considers he is a self-made man who has amassed a fortune with his talents. Nevertheless, if he would look back, I’m sure he will have to admit to himself that he isn’t all that respectable a citizen as he wants to make voters believe. He too is “an ugly American” in the eyes of any foreign beholder.

 

At this stage of the 21st century with new technologies making communications go global with a click, U.S. leaders have seemed to remain stagnant in their 20th century ways of government and diplomacy; precisely those very same manners that worried John F. Kennedy when the novel was first published.

 

Neither Obama nor Romney gets even solid approval from their European allies. I feel, much less would they get it from the Muslim states that their policies have led into an irreversible permanent war.

 

The issue is that none of them have learned from their errors but worst still is that there being an opportunity to be once again the best, both Obama & Romney have decided to just make it to the White House next balloting day.

 

Who is the “uglier American” of the two?

 

 

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona, Spain    

 

 

 

 


G-8 & NATO MEETS, 3 YEARS AFTER

May 20, 2012
Leave a Comment

Strolling together down the wrong path?

The main dangers in this life are the people who want to change everything  

 – or nothing.

 

–       Nancy Astor

 

On April 19, 2009 I published my first post in my English WordPress.com blog http://wp.me/pv6EY-1  among others things stating:

“As it stands today, European Union leaders seek proof that America has the willpower to continue occupying world supremacy in more than military alliances such as 60-year old NATO or world organisms as the United Nations, the IMF or the World Bank. In effect, there is a rather increasing incredulity emanating from the inefficiency of said organisations in bringing about peace and prosperity to all Mankind in this New Millennium.”

These very words are valid today. President Obama is more worried in ensuring his re-election than facing the hard facts of what has been dubbed as “the 21st. century depression”. After various G-8 summits, the last one at Camp David with Obama as host and the NATO Conference today in Chicago, world leaders will have met firstly wanting to change everything to finally end up doing nothing.

What’s the name of their game?

G-8 summits have lost their sense of being whilst the G-20 version has not even gotten a chance of being somewhat effective.

In Europe, the French-German axis that germinated in the Merkozy Connivance of Deauville is no more. France has elected a new socialist President in the person of Francoise Hollande and his strategy at these meets is yet to be seen. In the USA, no stand will be taken before the Obama-Romney presidential bout is over. Meanwhile the world is not at a standstill and the financial sharks are making one killing after another. The crisis goes on and quality of living where there was is eroding.

Then we have the military pulse at the NATO summit where issues will likewise remain unresolved due to the US-Pakistan estrangement.

As a new business week starts off tomorrow, the stock exchange markets will again speculate round and about the doubtful rating reports of the biased agencies and the partial media. The powerful shall become even richer and more dominant whilst the impoverished will have to find consolation on a daily wage of a couple of dollars.

In no way has deserved the Nobel Prize he was awarded just as in no way have today’s world leaders demonstrated that they have merits to manage the destiny of Mankind.

Honestly, I suspect that none of them, not even the all-powerful President of the United States governs in the name of democracy and for the people. I suspect they are mere puppets with their strings attached to vested interests in this sad vaudeville of the New Millennium.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona    

 


2012: ANNUS HORRIBILIS?

January 2, 2012
Leave a Comment

Even the best theory is worthless while it isn’t tested and works.

–       Fernando Fuster-Fabra


Versión española: http://wp.me/pRlnf-5y

The recently concluded year should be considered a horrible year for this world in convulsion. We have not cleared through crisis nor has peace been attained the various live fronts nor were the promises made by the North American president each day more absorbed with his re-election bid been kept. On top of all, the developed and supposedly civilized world has permitted the savage hunt of the terrorist, Osama Bin Laden and the brutal beating of Muammar el Gaddafi, the dictator.

Could there be a worst year than last year?

I’m afraid yes. In the offing for 2012 is not only an economically difficult year but also a politically turbulent one.

World leaders insist on thinking in the same mode as when they created this problem; precisely what Albert Einstein advised against when he was forced to abandon his native Germany just before the outbreak of World War II.

Barack Obama no longer thinks about the rest of the world but only on how to hold on tight to his power seat at the White House Oval Office.

Nicholas Sarkozy is in a similar frame of mind, with his own dilemma of holding on to power in neighbouring France; so he may grow up his little daughter in the Élysée.

Angela Merkel has more time left till 2013 to manoeuvre. That is what she is precisely doing, plotting in the name of 27 states subjected to her whims and obsessions on the European public deficit to save the Euro.

For David Cameron, his tantrum at the last European Council did him very little good. Whilst in disagreement with the Merkozy tandem, he is condemned to remain in the EU fold if he does not wish to sail alone in the recession waters that threaten us today.

What can I say about the Brussels bureaucrats? Neither Durao Barroso nor Van Rompuy has sufficient power to challenge the water-downed German version of the “Iron Lady” of the ‘80s. In all probability, other un-elected top notches like Mario Draghi at the ECB or Mario Monti from Italia end up with more power. With Papademos, they form the ‘Goldman Sachs triumvirate’ in the power seats in the EU.

In Spain, in spite of Mariano Rajoy’s victory by majority, it seems evident that he who governs is far away from La Moncloa, instructions being dictated on what to do at each instant.

It is worth observing how the majority of those in power have decided rather theoretical actions, assuming these will be the panacea that will cure all world evil. Meanwhile, practice in the past century has demonstrated that they are rowing counter-current, and I would add, in the wrong direction of an unequivocal solution to the problem.

Not only is the effect of a recession being felt and announced without any qualms to what the market reactions may be but likewise we are forewarned from these seats of globalised power that “either the austerity sacrifices are accepted or watch out for the consequences”.

All in all, it sounds grisly but above all the situation lacks a democratic imprint.

Not even events such as the Olympic Games 2012 in London can make us think than we are in any year other than an annus horribilis.    

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona    


EUROPE’S UNION IN THE CROSSROADS: DO OR DIE

November 15, 2011
5 Comments

Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.

–       Albert Einstein

 

 

 

 

Spanish version:  http://wp.me/pRlnf-4D

 

The G-20 Summit of world leaders was held in Cannes a few days ago. As expected, no decisions were taken to resolve the economic crisis that affects the stability of a great number of countries. Not a word was said about establishing restrictions to speculative abuses that crop up based on ratings of agencies prone to cause alarm with their presumptions. Assisting the summit were the principal European leaders representing the EU as well as Germany, France, Italy and United Kingdom as full-pledged members, with Spain and The Netherlands as guests.

Just a few miles away, in Brussels, the Greek crisis with a call for referendum warning and the forthcoming Italian tempest had been left unsolved. Today, the Greek crisis remains unsolved although Greece’s elected Prime Minister (Papandreou) has had to step down and a new one (Papademos) appointed in his place without any elections.  Something similar went on in Italy just a few hours ago, with the forced resignation of Berlusconi after the approval of the demanded reforms and the appointment of Monti to replace him.

Two new figures, not elected by their respective citizens, assume their respective tasks; technocrats, as they are called, but without analysing their close links to the financial structures that, in my opinion, have been the root of this entire regrettable situation. Lukas Papademos was Vice-President of the ECB from 2002 till 2008 when Jean Claude Trichet was President whilst Mario Monti not only was a European Commissioner but also a consultant of the notorious American bank, Goldman Sachs.

Furthermore, in November, the turnover at the ECB has also taken place, with an Italian, Mario Draghi, taking over the chair occupied by Trichet from 2003 till late October. He is another figure related to the bank (Goldman Sachs) that caused more than a single financial quake, amongst which it is worth mentioning its advisory role to the Greek Government in the times of the conservative, Kostas Karamanlis, precisely when the state accounts were falsified in the reports to Brussels.

The irony of this entire circus is that a legitimately elected Papandreou was forced out of office for calling a referendum to approve his proposals but no one has said a word about prosecuting neither Karamanlis nor Goldman Sachs por having intentionally lied, causing the domino effect on the weaker Eurozone economies.

Thus, not only has a chance been lost in Cannes to set up global regulating and supervisory measure of the larger banking entities as well as the rating agencies but also it has allowed a slow transfer of previous bank executives and personalities linked to these entities to occupy relevant posts in the hierarchical big-shots of the EU and in the government of its member states.

Likewise, the American stance has taken a 360 degree change from Pittsburgh to Cannes. With elections in 2012, Obama does not wish to risk any confrontation with potential donors for his campaign funds, amongst which we may mention the larger U.S. banks and the powerful Jewish lobby. He abandons Europe to its fate, above all because he does not share the curt German stance in some questions of procedure and timing. Not even the goodwill efforts of the French President and proud father of a baby girl served to ease the tense atmosphere. Furthermore, Obama is aware that in spite of the Euro crisis, the currency has a strong quotation, benefitting the U.S. Dollar and facilitating its exports to the Old Continent while decreasing European countries competitiveness in world trade.

What seems to have gone unnoticed in all this week of European tension after the Cannes summit is that Munich  prosecutors ordered a search in the Deutsche Bank offices in relation to the famous ‘Kirch affaire’. In spite of the death of communications magnate, Leo Kirch, the lawsuit against Deutsche Bank continues its course, with outgoing CEO, Josef Ackerman, in the midst of the storm. The matter must have been of such importance that Ackerman announced his decision not to seek the appointment to the bank’s presidency, a rather difficult manoeuvre after the German banking law reforms in 2009. Said reforms establish a two-year grace period before a former CEO can aspire to the presidential post of a bank, with the only exception that 25% of the stockholders so demanded.

Angela Merkel has covered many inside details of the decisions taken in relation with the German banking system between 2005 and 2011, as well as her personal pact with Gerhard Schröder, with regards such a vital issue as energy, disguised under the so-called ‘grand coalition’. Few are conscious of the of Merkel’s stubborn tenacity that has brought her from that membership in the communist youth movement in her younger years in the extinguished GDR to become ‘my girl’ for conservative, Helmut Kohl. Her rise to power came by pure chance after a scandal caused the downfall of Kohl’s chosen successor, Wolfgang Schäuble, actually the Economic Minister in Merkel’s cabinet.

Perhaps that is the reason that one has given due importance to the very recent announcement of the inauguration of start-up of Operation Nord Stream, the gas pipeline agreed upon between Russia and German, with the blessing of France, The Netherlands and United Kingdom. Said pipeline will go from Vyborg in Russia to Greifswald in Germany in a submarine line across the Baltic Sea. In Russia’s behalf the participations is headed by state-owned Gazprom as natural gas supplier and Nord Stream AG, a German enterprise has been set up to handle constructions and operations. It is interesting to observe that former Prime Minister Schröeder has been involved in the Nord Stream project and with Gazprom since December, 2005, roughly a month after stepping down in favour of Angela Merkel.   

What makes this affair even uglier is the fact that the powerful EU members will share the spoils of Russian gas without sharing a bit with other Baltic member states, namely – Poland, Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia – nor seem to have offered a gas link to the Scandinavian states for the moment. Nevertheless, said gas will indeed go across the English Channel to the United Kingdom.

This project is contrary to the interest of the pan-European Nabucco project which had set the goal of constructing a gas pipeline from Erzurum in Turkey to Baumgarten in Austria, precisely with the intention of breaking EU dependence on Russian gas supply. The problems generated with Gazprom gas supply through Ukraine have left Central Europe and Italy without a reliable supply in more than one occasion whilst Turkey had offered its facilities in a sign of goodwill in its bid to join the EU. Germany has again vetoed a state that has been accumulating more merits to join the EU than some who already are in.

With partners who demand from the south sacrifices but will not share the favourable agreements with other non-EU states, it is no wonder that the Union of 27, each day, is turning into a more difficult endeavour.  In addition, those who impose the terms & conditions interpret the Stability & Growth Pact in such a manner as to oblige members to apply solutions thought out in conventional terms, in precisely the same line as those that created the problem.

Whilst our present-century ‘Medea’ is bossing around in Europe, the route travelled will be the wrong one and the estrangement amongst members each day larger.  How much must we wait before Merkel is sent into exile?     

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona, Spain     


20 YEARS AFTER, FROM THE USSR TO PRESENT-DAY RUSSIA

August 18, 2011
Leave a Comment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spanish version :-    http://wp.me/pRlnf-4m

 

After a failed coup, USSR Premier Mijail Gorvachov handed over the power of the disintegrating empire to Boris Yeltsin. In no time, the USSR was no more.

Even today, we must ask ourselves what would have been of this world if the process would have remained in the hands of Gorvachov instead of Yeltsin.

In spite of the supposed end of the Cold War, at that stage, the Russia Yeltsin is supposed to have constructed is no different from the USSR that Gorvachov tried to change with his Perestroika. A convinced Leninist, this world leader was less understood at home than abroad. Nevertheless, the Western World failed to give him the support he needed. Yeltsin took over but really no change occurred than a change of name and the celebration of apparently tutored democratic elections.

Today, 20 years after, Russia has not advanced sufficiently towards democracy nor has eradicated the corrupt ways of the defunct USSR. Power is still concentrated in the hands of a few with a strongman at the helm of its destiny. As one of the emerging states that form the so-called BRIC bloc, Russia is expected to propel world economy. How is that to take place when its leaders remain adamant to democratic change in the course of its economic advances?

 

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona, Spain

 


USA TURNS BIN LADEN’S ASSASSINATION INTO HIS LAST HURRAH

May 6, 2011
Leave a Comment

Kingdoms without justice are mere robberies and robberies are like small kingdoms; but large empires are piracy writ large.

St. Augustine

 

White House top officials viewing the assassination live !

Firstly and above all, let me say that I shall never support nor be in favour of any act of terrorism that may have caused death and sorrow.

Having said that, I affirm that under no circumstance would I openly support any regime of whatever ideology to impose their will in clear violation of the principles of universal justice all men have a right to receive.

The assassination of Osama Bin Laden in the hands of a specially trained U.S. commando in an incursion into Pakistan without authorization of Pakistani authorities is not only a violation of Bin Laden’s right to be judged according to international laws but likewise a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty over its territory.

What may be a consolation for Americans for the death of thousands of citizens a decade ago in the cruel attack against the Twin Towers, popularly dubbed “9 11”, has turned to be an opportunity for Bin Laden’s last hurrah at the expense of the honourable proclamation of democracy through liberty and justice for all Mankind.

The issue is further aggravated by the fact that the U.S. President and Commander-in-Chief of its armed forces, Barack Obama, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. No man supposedly meriting such award should ever be permitted to instruct the assassination of any human being, no matter whether this person was a condemned criminal or an innocent man. For such condemning, there are courts of justice who have the responsibility to sentence men as guilty or innocent; never can a world leader usurp such functions which are not innate in the role of executive functions such as those inherent to Obama’s post as President of the United States of America.

Much as we would like to support the call of freedom from the seat of world power at the White House, no decent man can ever support an action based on revenge and wrapped with the banner of patriotism. No one in his sane mind can admit the reasoning that Bin Laden was a threat to the USA and the world a decade after the regrettable “9 11” tragedy.

This type of actions in the 21st. century seems a remake of previous American geopolitical blunders that made the people of America earn the label of The Ugly American* in the Vietnam War.

Today, after Bin Laden’s supposed death at the hands of the U.S. commando, the USA has given wings to enshrine an international terrorist and lift him to the rank of martyr for his followers. What consequences will such action bring to the civilised world in the next decade?

Surely not peace, probably more terrorist attempts with deaths of innocent civilians the world over.     

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona     

*The Ugly American – Eugene Burdick & William Lederer


GEORGE W. BUSH & HIS UNEASY CONSCIENCE

February 13, 2011
3 Comments

Iraq is no diversion. It is a place where civilization is taking a decisive stand against chaos and terror, we must not waver.

George W. Bush

A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, there’s no question about it.

George W. Bush

George W. Bush

Former U.S. President George W. Bush claims he has no regrets about all his decisions in the course of his two-term mandate, including his order for Iraq’s invasion and the subsequent probable violation of human rights of individuals that led to cancel Geneva Convention rights nine years ago for supposed terrorists that were enemy combatants in his Iraq and Afghanistan adventures.

Nevertheless, a few days before his visit to Europe to deliver a speech in Geneva at the Wilson Hotel, both the organizers of the event and a Bush spokesman announced that the former president would not travel to Switzerland to avoid risks due to possible demonstrations.

What human rights organizations say is somewhat different. The New York based Centre for Constitutional Rights assured that Bush had decided to cancel the trip in order to avoid a lawsuit. In 1998, former Chilean dictator, Augusto Pinochet, was arrested in London based on an arrest warrant issued by Spanish magistrate, Baltasar Garzón. It is believed that the former president has been advised to avoid visiting Europe, just in case. In fact, many former government officials and military command in dictatorial regimes fear indictments for human rights violations which only are applied within the European Union.

A man like George W. Bush that had often said he had a divine mission that justified his decision to invade Iraq but at the same time has considered some dictators as friends and allies (case of recently deposed Tunisia’s Ben Ali or Egypt’s resigned Hosni Mubarak), cannot have a clean-slate conscience. His subconscious betrays his innermost thoughts when he said, “A dictatorship would be a heck of a lot easier, …”.

What Bush must now admit is that the invasion that overthrew Saddam Hussein in 2003 has not brought peace to the world nor lowered the price of the oil barrel. On the contrary, Iraq in democracy is still a chaos and bomb attempts kill innocent Iraq citizens almost every week. The present-day government is not more stable today that it was a year ago. Oil has hit a record 100 US Dollar high. The world is much less safer today than it was when he left office.

Has his cancelled visit to Europe anything to do with an uneasy conscience about erred decisions he consciously refuses to admit?

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona


TAHRIR SQUARE TURNED INTO THE ARAB’S WORLD SUCCESSFUL TIAN’AMEM

February 11, 2011
Leave a Comment

Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.

Omar Khayyam

 

Tahrir Square, Cairo

Cairo’s small ‘liberation plot’ – Tahrir Square – has taught the world a great moral lesson on how to peacefully overthrow a decadent long-term dictator, something not achieved more than two decades ago in the world’s largest square in Beijing.

Fears that the wave of protests that started off in Tunisia and culminated with the resignation of Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak would be used by Muslim radicals to cause serious incidents in the Arab world seem baseless. The Egyptian population has resisted at ‘Liberation Square’ and elsewhere in the capital even as the army took out its tanks to the streets. Not even the military support of resigned President Mubarak thwarted their persistent insistence on his abandoning his post.

The Western world should closely observe this exemplary event which did not take place because of developed nations’ support of the Egyptian dissidents. The slow reaction of Western powers to the demonstrations in Tunisia against now deposed Ben Ali and rather mild reproaches to Mubarak as he held on to his post in the last hours, will mine Western developed nations’ credibility and weaken its weight in world affairs.

The USA should now carefully consider its stance as one must not forget that Mubarak’s Egypt was the platform chosen by no less than President Barack Obama to launch his ‘message to the Arab world’. The European Union must do likewise at this stage when it has slipped below the desirable level of power previously only second to the USA, with the ineffective role of High Representative for International Affairs, Lady Ashton.

Furthermore, China should take note of tiny Tahrir Square with not more than a couple of hundred thousand at the most. In 2011, Tian’anmen may wish to recover its revolution in the image of the changing Arab world.

Is the balance of power undergoing a new distribution or has the time come for global world affairs to be handled in a different manner?

I salute the people of Egypt and their intelligent stand on liberty. It is a clear proof that revolution needs no bloodshed nor traumatic changes but rather an orderly transformation of existing organisations into adequate ones for this challenging millennium. The world may be awakening towards justice and liberty, after all.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona

 


Next Page »