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Cohen: U.S. an ‘Existential Threat’ to the World

June 23, 2016 (EIRNS)—New York University professor emeritus Stephen Cohen, during his most recent appearance on the John Batchelor Show on June 21, put on the table the hypothesis that the US is an existential threat to the world.

"I think an argument could be made given how American policy is driving towards Russia, from Suwalki [Poland] to Syria, the way American policy seems to be to deliberately provoke Russia into war, and how it refuses to cooperate with Russia,—at least hypothetically we could raise the question the way the US, run by this bipartisan elite, has become the number one existential threat in the world." Referring to the State Department dissent letter on Syria, Cohen warned that "if Obama acted on that, almost certainly it would lead us into air war with Russia; it would distract Russia from its successful offensive against ISIS, such a distraction would be the end of Assad, and ISIS would be in Damascus."

He continued (concerning the dissent letter): the 51 "so-called" diplomats

"tell the President you should attack Syrian forces even though it may lead to war with Russia. What rational people would consider a war with Russia an acceptable price to pay for getting rid of Assad, because that’s what’s behind this, this obsession with Assad."

Later in the interview, Cohen said that because of the sanctions policy, Russia is leaving the West economically. Russia has, since the sanctions were imposed in 2014, gone from being a net importer of food to the world’s number one exporter of wheat. "This is a formidable country. ... They can fight, and if they’re pushed they will fight," he said.

"Putin says if they continue there will be war. That’s clear. It’s not reported in this country. There’s a kind of sound of silence as this warmongering by Washington leads us towards war."

In a similar vein, columnist Pat Buchanan, in a column posted on on June 20, warns that if the State Department dissenters were to get their way, the result would be war with Russia. "In brief, to strengthen the hand of our diplomats and show we mean business, we should start bombing and killing Syrian soldiers," Buchanan describes the letter.

"Yet Syria has not attacked us. And Congress has not declared war on Syria, or authorized an attack. Where do these State hawks think President Obama gets the authority to launch a war on Syria?"

What do they think the Constitution is, purely advisory? Do they not remember that waging aggressive war was the principal charge against the Nazis at Nuremberg, Buchanan asks?

"If U.S. bombs and missiles rain down on Damascus, to the cheers of the C-Street Pattons, what do we do if Bashar Assad’s allies Iran and Hezbollah retaliate with Benghazi-type attacks on U.S. diplomats across the Middle East? What do we do if Syrian missiles and Russian planes starting shooting down U.S. planes? Go to war with Hezbollah, Iran and Russia? Assume U.S. strikes break Syria’s regime and Assad falls and flees. Who fills the power vacuum in Damascus, if not the most ruthless of the terrorist forces in that country: al-Nusra and ISIS?"

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