Archive for February, 2011


February 25, 2011

The Global Guru recommends Scandinavia for investment:

Investment opportunities in the Nordics are much like the countries they represent: low key, but punching far above their economic weight. And they’re opportunities on which you should not miss out.

The Nordics also are a remarkable exception to the gloom and doom about Europe’s economic irrelevance. The World Economic Forum (WEF) ranks Sweden, Denmark and Finland among the top 10 most competitive economies in the world. Rival competitiveness rankings by the IMD management school in Lausanne also place Sweden and Norway in the top 10. The Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual “digital ranking” of the world’s largest economies — a substitute for technological prowess — ranked Sweden #1 — ahead of Denmark for the first time ever. Finland and Norway also ranked among the top six.

Sweden has the reputation as a socialist nation, it was Sweden’s free-market economic reforms — undertaken just prior to the “Great Recession” — that may be the real secret behind its economic resilience compared with other European countries.

Comment: The Global Guru may be right. Investing in Scandinavia could possibly be recommended but look out for Black Swans.


February 25, 2011

Desinformation betyder medveten vilseledning. Tekniken har sedan urminnes tider använts i krig. Men Sovjetunionen och dess allierade har systematiskt använt sig av desinformation också i fredstid. Michail Gorbatjov lovade att desinformationsverksamheten skulle upphöra, men den fortsatte i nästan oförminskad omfattning.

Bertil Häggman tar upp desinformation i form av förfalskningar, inflytandeagenter, internationella frontorganisationer osv. Uppgifterna bygger bland annat på vittnesmål från dem som själva arbetat med desinformation och kritiska granskningar av experter på området.

Ett särskilt kapitel behandlar den norske storspionen och landsförrädaren Arne Treholt som desinformatör och inflytandeagent.

I Danmark har en författare och journalist utnyttjats som desinformatör och i Sverige har “Proletären”, “Kommentar” och “Vi mänskor” publicerat desinformerande artiklar.

Läs om desinformationskampanjer som lögnen att aids var en amerikansk laboratorieprodukt, att amerikanska föräldrar köpte barnkroppsdelar från Syd- och Mellanamerika för transplantationer och att NATO planerade ett kärnvapenkrig.

Bertil Häggman är född 1940. Han är jurist och författare och medlem av Sveriges Författarförbund.

Bertil Häggman: Desinformation. Köp i närmaste bokhandel eller hos förlaget för Pris 50:-. Porto och emballage 25:- tillkommer per beställning.


February 23, 2011

Ibn ‘Abd al-Wahhab was an itinerant preacher in what would later become Saudi Arabia, whose main notion was that everyone had left true Islam. He decided to preach and try to get them to return to true Islam. When people did not listen to him, he said he had the right to declare a violent jihad against them. Al-Wahhab would go on to found Wahhabism, the sect of Islam that holds sway not only throughout much of the Arabian Peninsula but in many other places in the world as well. The only part of the Saudi version of Wahhabism that has changed from its founders’ teachings is that it no longer calls for violence against wayward Muslims— they just use preaching to convince Muslims to join their version of Islam. And it is this part that the global jihadis disagreed with. They would use violence.

Hasan al-Banna (1906-49) grew up in Egypt when it was occupied by the British–he too believed that the entire Islamic world had fallen away from true Islam. But feeling that the community had been led astray by the occupying British, with their wily control of Egypt’s educational system, he would change this reality by preaching, not violence. To do this, he created the Muslim Brotherhood to reach out to Muslims through social work and preaching. But the Muslim Brotherhood also had a secret armed section that prepared for jihad against the occupiers. As it happened, the British gave up power peacefully, putting in place a Muslim Egyptian king. Al-Banna, however, saw this king as nothing but a puppet, used by the occupiers to maintain their ideological control over Islam. He turned to violence against this “agent ruler,” who finally assassinated him, but not before his movement had caught on. Off and on throughout the 1950s-60s, Gamel Abdul Nasser and others suppressed the Muslim Brotherhood militants. Most of those who remained gave up on violence and/or fled to countries like Syria, Palestine, and Saudi Arabia, but a remaining hard core continued its mission.

Sayyid Qutb, one of al-Banna’s most famous disciples, wrote a 30-volume commentary on the Quran, later condensed to a short manifesto called Milestones Along the Way , in which he added a twist to the ideas of al-Wahhab and al-Banna. He agreed that the entire Islamic world had left true Islam, and that he and his co-believers were the only ones who understood Islam. But he felt the target of the struggle should be the U.S. and Britain, whose notions of democracy directly contradicted his definition of tawhid. Qutb was among those executed in one of Nasser’s crackdowns, but his brother Mohammed Qutb fled to Saudi Arabia and became a university teacher; among his pupils was Osama bin Laden.

For the few thousand global jihadis today, this appears to be authentic Islam. Especially for young men who feel alienated in Europe or in large cities like Cairo or Istanbul, the attraction of authenticity cannot be overstated. They believe that they are sacrificing their lives for the good of the community while avoiding hell. They are taking a stand against evil societies, many of which in fact are corrupt—they indeed face governments that are not responsive to their needs and economies that are not producing jobs. Finally, there is an appeal for revenge and retribution for such things as Abu Ghraib and purported American rapes of Muslim women. Considering how strong some of these appeals are, it should be reassuring to us that only a few thousand people have answered this call.

Al Qaeda is still continuing its war. They have convinced the diverse groups involved in local jihads on various levels—in North Africa, Egypt, Somalia, Yemen, Pakistan, Indonesia—that they have failed in their struggles, and gotten the remaining believers to join with them. There are now far more people involved in Al Qaeda than there were before 9/11, but only because the number of jihadis in general has shrunk considerably. Their post-9/11 strategies include information operations (exploiting the media), using oil as a weapon, and guerrilla warfare.

The global jihadis see this as a two-hundred year war.

Crime: A crime was committed on 9/11. A group of criminals decided to murder Americans. This pinpoints al Qaeda as the main problem, not blaming the entire Islamic world; but it refuses to recognize the deeper roots and global nature of the conflict.

Global Insurgency: Our military sees the conflict as a global insurgency. This provides a global vision that gives us strategies for fighting the war, but downplays the role of nations.

Islamic Reformation: The Islamic Reformation model suggests that it is not about us at all; it emphasizes the role of religion, culture, and history and downplays the economic/social issues, leaving us without a model for the war.

World War IV: Finally, there is the Long War or World War IV model. This emphasizes nation-states and the lengthy nature of the global conflict.

A comparative approach to what happened between 1918 and 1924 when Comintern in Moscow started a global revolution for world domination could be useful.

Already in 1918 the Russian communists concluded a “secret” treaty with German communist Karl Liebknecht stipulating that a Russian army was to march on Berlin in support of a communist uprising in Berlin. If the revolution was victorious, Liebknecht promised to raise a German Red Army of 500,000.

In March, 1919, the Soviets possibly concluded a similar treaty with Hungarian communist Bela Kun and started preparations for a revolutionary offensive against the Entente, and particularly against Poland and Rumania. The Red Army started marching through Ukraine toward Ruthenia but the regime of Kun collapsed and further operations became impractical.

Source: P.Milyukov, La politique extérieure des Soviets, Paris 1937.

One of the most violent Soviet military theoreticians was Mikhail N. Tukachevsky. The Soviets, he wrote, would have to consider war:

“The Communist International must prepare the proletariat for the forthcoming [international] civil war from the military point of view. It must make the proletariat ready for the moment when the world offensive by all armed proletarian forces will take place against armed world capitalism.”
It would not come as a surprise. The Comintern would be a general staff and work out the military problems of socialist war.
Tukachevsky had practical command experience. He led the Red Army in a rapid advance on Warsaw 1920. He then devised a strategy for encircling Warsaw and reach the borders of Lithuania and Germany to stimulate revolutionary movements in central Europe.

Source: M.N. Tuchachevsky, Voina klassov, stat’i 1919-1921, Moscow 1921.

Another leading Soviet military theorist was Mikhail Frunze. He advised the Soviet Union to strengthen itself industrially. It was important to organize communist movements abroad. Thirdly the Red Army must be brought to high efficiency and attain maximum strength. Once the conditions were right offensive revolutionary war had to be waged by the Red Army allied with the foreign proletariat. “The proletariat can and will attack. With it, as its main army, will march the Red Army”.

Source: M.V. Frunze, Yedinaya voyennaya doktrina i krasnaya armiya, Moskva 1921, reprint 1941.

Soviet policy, at least after 1945, was still that of seeking global domination. The union for violent revolution lasted less than 100 years. Can Islamist fight to control the world last 200 years?


February 22, 2011

Det kommunistiska Albanien var länge ett ideal för extrema kommunister över hela världen. Regimen hade etablerats 1946 sedan icke-kommunistiska politiska ledare eliminerats. 1967 utropades Albanien till världens första ateistiska stat. Länge hölls regimen vid liv bl.a. genom lägerindustrier och tortyr förekom regelbundet i de albanska fängelserna. När regimen föll i samband med Sovjetunionens kollaps 1991 började avslöjandena om hur det fattiga Albanien satsat miljontals kronor på stöd till kommunistpartier över hela världen. Sverige var inte något undantag. Pengarna slussades till utlandet via en solidaritetsfond.

Fonden skapades den 10 juni 1964 enligt Resolution nr 190 av det albanska kommunistpartiets (AK) sekretariatet i centralkommittén och hade till syfte att finansiera och utveckla förbindelserna med andra marxist-leninistiska grupper, däribland svenska.

Finansieringen skedde på olika sätt:

I resolution nr. 4 av den 20 januari 1967, undertecknad av ledaren själv, Enver Hoxha, om “inbjudningar till partier och representanter för marxist-leninistiska grupper till Albanien under 1967” och framför allt till AK:s femte kongress, fanns bland 200 personer också två representanter för svenska marxist-leninistiska grupper.

Sedan detta år utvidgades finansieringen och förbindelserna med de svenska marxist-leninistiska grupperna speciellt genom personer och delegationsbesök, prenumerationer på utgåvar av AK:s press, anställning av svenskar vid Radio Tirana.

Huvudpersonen i samarbetet mellan AK och svenska grupper var Nils Andersson. Nästan hela perioden 1968 till 1986 bodde han i Albanien.

Andra svenska vänner som kom till Albanien var Anders Hörling, Nils Holmberg, Marika Holmberg, Rene Andersson (Nils Anderssons fru), Bo Gustafsson med frun Dagmar Kristina Bohman Gustafsson, Per Akselson, Per Åke Lindblom, Stefan Lindgren, Bengt Sture Lindkvist, Peter Sarusted, S.Elisabet, Peter Andersson, K.Arne Björn Åkerblom, Anders Person etc.

Betalningarna genom “Solidaritetsfonden” gjordes i Albanien eller genom de albanska ambassaderna i Stockholm och Paris.

I ambassaden i Holland betalades under 1973 till en Boeve Peterson 2 500 och 3 500 dollar (man hade en viss förkärlek för “imperialistvaluta”). Förmodligen var Peterson svensk.

I de dokument, som finns tillgängliga hos kontrollkommissionen har de svenska marxist-leninistiska rörelserna olika namn: 1967 den Marxist-leninistiska gruppen, 1969 Marxist-leninistiska ligan och sedan 1974 Kommunistiska partiet marxist-leninisterna (KPML).

Förutom omfattande kostnader för resor och biljetter skedde några satsningar av propagandistisk natur som:

– sedan 1969 genom särskilda resolutioner stöd till “Marxistiskt Forum” och “M-L Gnistan”.

– 15 000 US $ till Nils Andersson.

– genom resolution nr. 63 av centralkommittésekretariatet den 12 juni 1972 till Nils Holmberg 6 000 US för utgivning av en svensk upplaga av det albanska kommunistpartiets historia. – under perioden 1967 till 1986 lämnade “Solidaritetsfonden” sammanlagt till marxist-leninistiska grupper ( (för resebidrag, biljetter, propaganda) omkring 74 000 US $ eller med dagens växelkurs ca. 500 000 kr.

De officiella dokumenten beträffande utbetalningarna har undertecknats av Ramiz Alia och anställda inom utlandssektionen av centralkommittén: Piro Pita, Behar Shtylla, Gjylani Shehu, Dhimiter Stamo, Sami Baholli, Agim Popa.


February 21, 2011


The latest phase of the global civil war started in 2001. The question of the legal status of Islamist terrorist organizations and their definition is of some importance in this world wide civil war after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington DC. One possibility is to define these fanatical organizations that are bent on the destruction of the West as criminal organizations. In trying to find a suitable definition it might be useful to look at the concept private army (the term as such could be questionable as it sets up an opposition to “public armies”. A possible alternative could be “unofficial army”). What is a private army? It could be a group of people which may include men, women, and children, with identifications focused on some common symbol. The symbol need not be territorial, and it need not be exclusive in monopolizing the identification of its members. Where the group itself is the symbol, intensity of identification may be increased by conscious breaches of the morality system of a more inclusive group to which members feel some association but from which they feel they are irreparably barred because they are in some way regarded as a lesser group (see for instance B. Lewis, The Assassins: A Radical Sect in Islam (1968).

A private army is not a mob as this is lacking the sufficient organization over time. The members lack identification with a persisting symbol. A mob may become a private army or even a terrorist organization. A private army involves over time, but there is no need for a continuing temporal sequence. A gang, that assembles for specific “jobs”, like the gangs of al Qaeda, is similar to those described by Lewis above that convene at certain phases of the moon for ritual violence, ethnic armies which form in lulls of the agricultural cycle and cross borders to kill and pillage other groups.


February 20, 2011



Hearing on June 26, 1981 (1982).

Witness: Robert Moss, syndicated columnist. London Daily Telegraph.


Bulgarian Link
Agca in PLO Camps
Problems of Evidence
Role of Surrogates
Illusions about Moscow
Soviet Strategy
Active Measures
Executive Action
War Planning
East German Role
Soviet Bloc Links to Neo-Nazis
Cuban Involvement
Cuban-Backed Terror in the United States
Castro in Monimbó
Cuban Link with “Carlos”
Testimony of an ETA Prisoner
The Moscow-PLO Axis
Soviet Arms for PLO
The GRU’s Second Direction
PLO Espionage in Pakistan
PLO as Moscow’s Arab Spokesman
Subversion in the Gulf
Libyan-Syrian Terror Pact
Terrorist Training in Libya
The Moscow-Tripoli Axis
Soviet Commissars in Syria
Bases in South Yemen
Targeting the United States
The Ideal Terrorist Weapon
Attacks on Energy Facilities
Assassination Attempts
Penetration and Preemption
Cutting Off State Support
Visa Restrictions
Cuban-Sponsored Violence in the United States
Soviet Control of DGI
Naif Hawatmeh’s Threat to Oil Supply
Antecedents of Carlos
Patrice Lumumba University
U.S. Terrorists in Mideast Camps
Cuba’s Role in Western Hemisphere
Julian Rizo
Soviet Spetsnaz Forces
Soviet Sabotage Network in France
False Flag Operations
The KGB’s Service A
Philip Agee
Soviet Executive Action
Restrictions on Travel
Murder of Trotsky
Attacks on Subcommittee
Leftwing McCarthyism
Journalistic Cover for KGB
Vulnerability of Media
KGB Versus CIA
Limited Accountability of KGB
Scale of KGB Operations
Media Coverage of CIA

Prepared Statement

Confusion over Definitions
Failure to Recognize the Role of the Surrogate, or Subcontractors
The Problem of Wishful Thinking
The GRU Contribution
East Berlin
Red Terror and Black
The Cuban Contribution
Moscow and the PLO
Libyan-Syrian Terror Pact
Terrorist Bases in Libya


February 18, 2011

Indian Titanism

Asura Titanism

In Indian Hinduism the Asuras are opposed to the Devas (gods) . Originally, in the Vedic times, they were another class of gods, perhaps the indigenous deities. By the end of the Vedic period, however, the asuras had attained their demonic role. The usual translation of asuras is demons, but it might be possible to describe them as titans. They are capablee of assuming the form of animals or humans. Furthermore they were completely evil, powerful creatures that delight in spreading fear, confusion, chaos, and destruction among the humans. Sometimes they can even be more powerful than the gods. Devas (Sanskrit: “divine”), Iranian daeva, in Vedic India, one of many divine powers, roughly divided on the basis of their identification with the forces of nature into sky, air, and earth, divinities like Varuna, Indra, Soma. In the later monotheistic systems the devas became subordinate to the one supreme being. During the Vedic period the gods were divided into two classes, the devas and the asuras (in Iranian, daevas and ahuras). In India the devas came to be more powerful than the asuras, and the latter word eventually took on the meaning of demon. In Iran the reverse took place, and the daevas were denounced as demons by Zoroaster. It is not hard here to see a parallel between the titans and the asuras, but the asuras have taken on a more demonic aspect, or rather devilish, than the titans.

Plato in the Western tradition did blame evil ”on the ancient Titanic nature” just as the Indians talk about ”asuric nature”. According to Vedic myth the asuras entered the darkness of the underworld and ”they were pierced with evil”. The devas and asuras became ”hateful fraternal enemies” (Gier, p. 60). Although the two share the same nature, they have different functions of divine and as antigods. In some Buddhist texts the asuras are known as the ”older devas”, which would compare well with the Greek myth of titans. The asuras are jealous, prideful, quarrelsome, and forever warring with the devas. One can talk of a gradual shift of meaning of the asuras from lord and any being having power, to enemy lord, then enemy and finally antigod. (Gier, p. 63).

The same author concludes that asura Titanism turns out to be its weakest form. The devas, being devious, are responsible for the demise of the asuras. The only way to make a distinction between them is to create strife. Finally the devas empower them in their rebellion. The beings who have the best claim to heaven are doing a rather poor job of making good that claim and the beings with no natural claim to heaven contend that they can achieve divinity on their own power. This can be compared with the attempts of humans to become gods by acting like titans. Prthu was the ruler during the Golden Age. He helped stealing a cow, just as Prometheus stole the fire from Zeus to give to the humans. Here we can see another similarity between Western and Indian titanism. The Greeks did not have a category for evil beings. Their daimon was usually a good spirit. The titans are endowed with hubris.

Prometheus admits that he loved humans too much. He is viewed both as a thief and an usurper. He is a god that has been overthrown, but not necessarily an evil asuralike figure. Prometheus believes he has just as much cunning as Zeus. Therefore he joins the Gods. He was given the task of dividing the first sacrifice. He took the meat and hid it for the humans giving the Gods bones with fat. But Zeus expected Prometheus to play such a trick so Zeus countered by hiding the heavenly fire so that humans could not cook their meat. Prometheus differs from the other titans by not being prideful, full of anger and resentful as well as stubborn. There are no exact parallels in Hindu mythology. Rather than stealing fire grain was stolen.

What we can see is that Prometheus is easily linked to the technological titanism described by Ernst Juenger although the Prometheanism and spiritual Titanism found in India is different.


February 18, 2011


Nicholas F. Gier nine years ago published an important book for the study of Titanism (Spiritual Titanism : Indian, Chinese, and Western Perspectives (Suny Series in Constructive Postmodern Thought), State University of New York Press, 2000). It deals with Western, Indian and Chinese Titanism. This essay is a discussion of a few aspects of the different forms of Titanism. Before moving into Asian Titanism it important to take a look at how Ernst Juenger viewed this phenomenon. In all of Ernst Juenger’s postwar writings Titans and Titanism return regularly as metaphor for powers that threaten the earth and humankind. In the parable Aladdin’s Problem (1984; in the United States in 1992. New York: Marsilio Publishers, Corp.) Titanism plays an essential role. History flows into the Post-History of Titanism. The Titans subjugate all material and spiritual resources in order to rule over the “temporal world” as a demiurge. In this parable Aladdin is the titanic agent, who mines and controls the energies of the earth, deluding himself into believing that eventually he will achieve perfection by containing and contenting all needs. “Aladdin’s lamp was made of pewter or copper,perhaps merely clay…It was not lit, but rubbedto make the demon appear. He could put up palacesor wipe out cities overnight, whatever the master of thelamp commanded…Our lamp is made of uranium. It establishes the same problem: power streaming toward ustitanically.” (p. 133) It has been Titanism that has lead Ernst Jünger to believe that the world was involved in a gigantic catastrophe and and he therefore felt an “anxiety” over history. Olaf Schroeter in his pathbreaking Es ist am technischen viel Illusion – Die Technik im Werk Ernst Juengers (Berlin: Verlag Koester, 1993) deals also with Titanism. In his interpretation Ernst Juenger sees people drawn into overestamating themselves by the development of natural sciences and this in turn furthers Titanism. Antireligiosity, rationalism and exact natural sciences are the foundation for the growing power of Titanism in the West. But the historical foundation was the Enlightenment, which meant the start for the pushing away of the Gods. Titanic rule in our part of the world started with World War I, a technical demonstration of the power of the Titans. During World War II nihilism was added. In Gier’s book Titanism is sometimes described as a belief that does not recognize that there are limits to what humans can become and what they should do. Hesiod attributed the meaning of Titan to titainein = to stretch, to strive, or to exert) and tisis (retribution). The latter was a punisment for their overexertion. The Titans in Greek mythology were known for hubris (pride) and atasthalie (violence). Titanism could be compared to anthropocentricism and anthropomorphism unlimited. The Titans take over divine prerogatives. The hubris results in their loosing sight of their proper place in the universe. In the following I will limit myself to certain aspects of Indian and Chinese Titanism. (To be continued)


February 16, 2011

The life style of the Bedouin nomads is basic. It contains the image of an heroic ideal of the warrior: raids on camel, brigandage, attacks on the despised other world, tribal wars and military expeditions. Peace on earth would mean boredom and stagnation.

Europe, Africa and Asia were the Realm of War and conquered by force of arms. Then the conquered areas became parts of the Islamic Realm of “Peace”.

Islam borrowed from the Persians when it came to sophisticated “warrior diplomacy”. Their strategy relied on psychological warfare, espionage and subversion. Peace was not acceptable in the conduct of international relations.

Persian strategists knew how to facilitate conquest by fomenting dissidence within target nations.


February 16, 2011


In 2002 Wall Street Journal (“What We’re Fighting For”, April 29, 2002) launched a new Monday column naming it “The Western Front”. It could be seen as reference to World War I. “It was that war”, wrote assistant editor Brendan Miniter, “that accelerated Western civilization down into a dangerous pit from which it may now be emerging.” Mr. Miniter also asked if it is so that some cultures create spiritual, material and political prosperity while others breed nothing but oppression?

“Now it is time for Western culture”, he continued, “to stand up again. Worries about imperialism, especially cultural imperialism, should be cast off. Global free trade isn’t imperialistic; it’s a spread of a natural right, economic freedom…All cannot remain quiet on the Western front. The West, not just America, is locked in a struggle with forces that question its foundation…the West is worth defending.” It gives hope to the world for lasting peace among men and the spread of freedom to lands that have only known tyranny.

Could this be the first signs of a growing understanding that there is a completion in the West of civilization, a belief that could partly be based on the heliotropic myth and constant rejuvenation of Western civilization through advanced technology and strong economy. The West differs from other civilizations. It’s “Universal State” (United States) has come to stay and one way to guarantee continued strength is space power. The earlier opposition between land- and sea-power has been exchanged for the fact that if the “Universal State” controls space (civilian and military use) this would guarantee for the future the position of strength it holds.

When in 1996 I published about the question of American eclipse in a short essay the matter of the world power was still not fully resolved. Would civilization move across the Pacific Ocean to East Asia on it’s way to complete a full circle? Was China to follow the United States as leaders in a completion of history?

Much has however changed in a few years. Economic recession lost Japan the place as a possible successor empire and although China is still a rising power and certainly has a coming possibility, the present war on international terrorism and economic downturn is, for the time being, holding back this most populous state in the world .

It has become increasingly clear that the United States is the most powerful state in world history. Professor Paul Kennedy, who in the 1980s was one of the proponents of American eclipse, has now admitted that in military terms there is only one player that counts – the United States (Paul Kennedy, “The Eagle Has Landed”, Financial Times, London, February 1, 2002). Military spending is higher, absolutely and relatively, than any other nation in history. It should be noted here that it was President Ronald Reagan that initiated this military spending policy in the 1980s. He was also responsible for the long economic upturn in the United States lasting into the 1990s.

Now, in the beginning of the 21st century, there has, in the words of Kennedy, never existed such a disparity of power. There is no comparison.

After the 1980s the Soviet Union collapsed.At the same time free enterprise in the United States boomed all through the 1990s. American companies started cutting costs, making operations leaner and more competitive. Investment in new technologies was intensive and America led the communication revolution. The rising productivity was combined with cuts in deficits.

Kennedy is presenting examples of the US strength: 45 percent of all internet traffic is in the United States, 75 percent of Nobel laureates in the sciences, economy and medicine reside in America, 12 to 15 American universities have through vast financing left other universities in the world behind. The biggest companies, the largest banks are all in the United States.

In the view of this writer the dominating fact, however, securing the position of the final empire in the West for the United States, is the technological drive. Technology and free enterprise are the most important factor in today’s world for civilizational strength. This has made Western civilization unique and is a guarantee for completion in the West. There are of course other factors of importance to be taken into account like freedom, democracy, that are unique to the West, but science and technology is playing the main role.

Western Eurasian Mainstream Civilizations

Lately civilizationists have agreed upon eight mainstream civilizations in world history. The Far East, India, Central America and Western South America are outside the heliotropic movement of civilizations from east to west. The civilizations dealt with in the present context are all in Western Eurasia and in North America. (Western civilization as term is not used here. It is geographically at present extended from New Zealand in the East, over Australia, Israel, Europe and North America. There is most likely a seperate Jewish civilization but I have chosen to count Israel as part of Western civilization).

Thus among the mainstream civilizations there are four “core” civilizations: Middle East, Egypt, Mediterranean and Western Europe.

As will be explained below North America (United States) is regarded as seperate and the final stage in the movement of civilization from East to West.


This civilization includes both Greece and the Roman empire. It consisted of two basins, an eastern Greek-speaking and a western Latin- speaking. The civilization originated in the eastern basin and spread along the east-west running seaways. Greek culture did of course not spring up, fully formed from barbarism. There were at least four influences most importantly from the Minoan culture on Crete but also of an Indo-European, Mesopotamian and Semitic origin.

Greece, Macedonia

Greece never rose to be an empire, consisting mainly of city states, but Macedonia must for a short while (480 to 330 B.C.) must be regarded as such under Alexander the Great. The period of his reign, however, was too short to place it in the chain of empires of the myth of heliotropism. But the Hellenic cultural influence was lasting. It was an urban culture. It should not be forgotten, however, that its expansion also was based on a social organization, slavery.

The Roman Empire

Instead Rome (bronze) was to become the next stage of transfer westward of power. When the eastern empires declined, Rome moved forward (when the might of the East declined, that of the West arose).

The Greek culture was adopted by the Romans but it always remained a garment that was put on. The culture of Rome is therefore a history of how it came to find and adopt Greek culture, at the late date of 200 B.C.

In the republican period power lay in the hands of the senate. When it shifted to the armies as early as 100 B.C. it led to starting decay in the 3rd century A.D.

While Rome and the Roman empire lost all glory, Rome as fiction continued to exist. The city retained its glory as the capital of the world and it was by some historians seen as the last and final empire.

Western Europe

Out of the Mediterranean civilization grew the West European civilization, a further step in western direction in the movement to the West toward full completion. It managed during the Middle Ages to avoid occupation of invaders from Cenral Asia (Huns, Mongols), who were stopped in Central Europe (in the case of th Huns not until they had reached present day France).

Eurasia is the world’s largest landmass with an east-west axis where there is free access to exchange. There were no ecological or geographic barriers. This has made it easier for inventions to move unlike in Africa and early America where the axes have been from north to south.

Middle East civilization originally provided development. From ca. 8500 B.C. to 500 B.C. most inventions emerged in the Middle East – animal domestication, plant domestication, writing, metallurgy, wheels, and organized states. Except for water mills after 900 A.D. Europe did not contribute much until 1450. Even between 1000 and 1450 the flow of science was in a westerly direction from the East.

What would the main reasons be for the rise of the West? Some of them would be free enterprise, organized economy, an existing merchant class, patent protection of inventions, lack of despots ruling large territories and heavy taxation, plus Graeco-Jewish-Christian critical empirical inquiry.

In contrast to the Middle East Western Europe did not have a fragile environment (most of the Middle East today is desert). Rain fall in Europe was higher and regrowth of vegetation was quicker. After 7000 years of food production Europe still has intensive agriculture even producing a large surplus. Crops, livestock, technology, writing systems, however, all came from the Middle East. In Western Europé there has been the right environment to develop these inventions. The development of technology has been the major factor.

One example of technological improvement of invention (originally made in China) has been the printing technique based on European/Latin writing but the original came from China – paper, movable type, metallurgy (from the Middle East), presses, inks, and scripts. Gutenberg, however, used metallurgy for typecasting from metal dies, steel for dies, lead for moulds and tin-zinc-lead alloy for type. The European printing press was developed from screw presses for making wine and olive. Also Europe, in contrast to China, had few letters. Fewer letter forms had to be cast.

Why was America not civilized by the Chinese? In the 15th century the Chinese sent large fleets of highly developed type to Arabia and Africa (even around the world if one is to believe Gavin Menzies, 1421. The Year China Discovered the World, 2002). Despotically ruled and united China did however stop discovery attempts. The reason seems to have been a struggle between two factions at the court. One wanted to send ships to other continents. The other wanted isolation. In contrast Europe had in the late 15th century provided Columbus with three small ships. He crossed the Atlantic discovering America and believing it was Asia. Columbus had tried his luck with a number of small European countries before he was accepted by the Spanish court, which financed his journey. The despots in China isolated the empire, while the fragmentation of Europe actually helped Columbus.

Mediterranean and West European civilizations laid the groundwork for Western civilization, a larger entity including geographically today Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and possibly Israel. As will be further explained in section 6 this writer regards North America (United States) as a seperate civilization (not only a subculture of Western civilization).

The Carolingian Empire

The empire of Charlemagne, although impressive, was merely West European in its reach, although it was one chain in the movement of empires from East to West.

The memory of Rome was kept alive and the Carolingian Empire paid special tribute to its Roman heritage during the Middle Ages (when the Carolingian was followed by the Ottonian Empire around 1000). The medieval German emperors associated Rome with universal dominion, but it did not last. For a period this empire was surpassed by France. So it was believed (at least in France) that the French king had more right than the German emperor to succeed Charlemagne.

Great Britain

Meanwhile there was an English myth of its own that celebrated England as the final civilization. Richard de Bury, bishop of Durham, indicated the transfer from Babylonians, the passing via Egypt and Greece to Rome (and Arabs in the form of Islamic civilization). Then passing temporarily through France empire came to rest in England.

It could well be argued that beginning in the 18th century with the rise of the British Empire, the heliotropic myth had at last come to be fulfilled.

The question was of course if Columbus discovery of America was just a chance voyage of the late fifteenth century. It was not and the full importance of the discovery of America was understood late in European countries. The fact that America became a British colony was not lost on the interpreters of the myth.

United States – Last Toynbee Type Universal State

The most famous expression of the myth in relation to America was the lines by the British philosopher George Berkeley (written in 1726, but not published until 1752), “Westward the Course of Empire takes its Way”). Thus an element of civilizational thinking was introduced into the American dream. A German journalist, E.M. Posselt, in 1794 wrote that a new force was rising in the West, and that like an oak on a lonesome mountain, the force would grow and probably in a few generations be the arbiter of world events.

The myth now became intervowen with Israel (America as Israel of the West). Later Herman Melville (White Jacket) would write:

“Escaped from the house of bondage, Israel of old did not follow after the ways of the Egyptians. To her was given an express dispensation; to her were given new things under the sun. And we Americans are the peculiar, chosen people – the Israel of our time: we bear the ark of the liberties of the world…God has predestined, mankind expects, great things from our race; and great things we feel in our souls. ”

America was to be a “city on the hill” as expressed in Mathew 5:14 (“A city that is set upon a hill cannot be hid”; note also the statement of John Winthrop in 1630 to a small band of pilgrims: “We shall be a city upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us.”). The wilderness became the center in which human beings found divine inspiration and rose above themselves.

The belief in the rise of the United States was expressed by the nineteenth century painter Thomas Cole in his five large paintings “The Course of Empire” although the cyclical depiction of history should be regarded as a warning, not a description of the United States moving in the direction of destruction and desolation.

In 2003 the United States was celebrating the bicentennial of the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the size of the country’s territory. Someobservers claim that the United States then already then became an empire. It directed, however, the American view westward, not eastward, back to its European roots. This is important to remember, as we move further into the interpretation of the United States as the completion of civilization in the West. (This writer is avoiding the term empire to describe the United States after 1991 as the term remind of the pejorative “imperialism”, lately of Marxist origin. Also hegemon is avoided as term in favor of world power. Other terms could contemplated as “last universal state” or “planetary power”).

Time of Troubles and the Universal State

The great British civilizationist Arnold J. Toynbee in his ten volume work A Study of History (London: Oxford University Press,1934 – 1954) examined world history’s twenty-one civilizations (seven of which, including the West, still exist). Toynbee argued that these civilizations moved in stages from genesis to disintegration. Passing away before the end of the Cold War this British historian was not able to interpret the period of 1914 to 1991 as “Time of Troubles” of Western civilization. All other civilizations had passed through such an era. They had been stabilized by the intervention of a peripheral power that had restored order by imposing a “Universal State”. The “Time of Troubles” for the West was the era from World War I to the end of the Cold War (1914 – 1991) and the “Universal State” is now the United States.

Based on Professor Toynbee’s thesis one would ask if Western civilization is nearing it’s disintegration? The answer is no. The West differs from other civilizations in history in that it has, through technological improvements, been able to rejuvenate itself. Technological progress combined with free enterprise is thus the key that distinguishes the West from older civilizations. The completion of development of Western civilization is American world power. There is no last stage of decline and fall, as in other civilizations. The chain of development from East to West and of empires has reached it’s final stage in the West, in America. The West has overcome the threats of national socialism and communism. The new totalitarian threat, that of radical Islam, since September 11, 2001, may mean that it will take somewhat longer for completion. The threat of radical Islam arose at a time when space power, the ultimate instrument of control, was entering the international stage in earnest.

Toynbee in a twelfth volume of his work (Reconsiderations, 1961) brought up the question of a master activity of man-kind. He wrote that it was tempting (and he was right) to pick out one of man’s activities (technology) and give it status as master activity. Other activities (like politics, economics, or religion) would be subordinate to the chosen activity. It would simplify the problem.

Technology and Invention

This writer has chosen technology as the master activity in Western civilization (for a detailed history of technology there is Charles Singer et al., A History of Technology, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 8 vol., 1954-1984). The West’s (mainly the United States) technology is the main reason why there will be no decline and fall of the West as was the case with other, earlier civilications. Through science and technology the West has created a vehicle for continuing leadership and survival.

This choice does of course not exclude other reasons for West’s guaranteed survival. Economics is vital for technological reasearch and invention. A strong economy needs advanced technology as much as advanced technology is necessary for a strong economy. Politics is important as the United States needs a well-balanced policy for continued strength as well as for protection of freedom and democracy worldwide.

One example of the power of invention in the United States was the Manhattan Project, with the goal of creating the technology for producing the atomic bomb in a race with Hitler’s Germany. The project suceeded in three years at a cost of then 2 billion U.S. dollars.

Another example is the fact that some important inventions were made in China (gunpowder) and Mesopotamia (petroleum) and Greece (a mixture of petroleum, pitch, resins, sulfur and quicklime). But it was in Western Europe and the United States that gasoline use for propulsion was invented and gunpowder used for cannons on ships, a major weapon in colonial enterprises.

Inventions need a free environment for science, a relative good life expectancy, so that prospective inventors can expect to reap the fruits of their labor, protection of ownership via patent laws, opportunity for technical training, free enterprise to provide the incentive to invest capital in technological development, the possibility for inventors to keep earnings for themselves. Other explanations for the reason of the success of technology in Western Europe and the United States are a culture of risk-taking behaviour, scientific outlook, and religious tolerance.

Other factors pushing technology forward have been war stimulating technology, in the case of Germany and Japan strong centralized government support, a rigorous climate where technology is necessary for survival and a general receptivity in society.

Until around 1450 China was technically far more advanced than Europe.

There is a long list of Chinese inventions: canal lock gates, cast iron, deep drilling, efficient animal harness, gunpowder (already mentioned), kites, magnetic compasses, movable type, paper., porcelain, printing, sternpost rudders, and wheelbarrows. But it was West European and American development of technology that came to dominate.

This explains why in the Republic of China and in Communist China there is a focus on world history research concerning the role of technology in the present world. Great Britain rose, so Chinese world historians, to a trading and financial power during the 18th century and the first half of the 19th century. A second industrial revolution followed in the late 19th century in Germany through industrial and military power and finally now a third industrial revolution in the 21st century has consolidated United States global power.

Capital receives its real power when it is converted into technology (multinational enterprises transform the way of life). Technological advancement is in reality the only indicator of national strength (Li Ji, Ershi Sjiji Shijie Shi (20th Century World History, 2 vols., Wuhan: Hubei Jiuyu Publishing Co., 1997, Cui Lianzhong ed., Shijie Tungshi, 6 vols., Beijing: Renmin Publishing Co., 2000).

Land and Sea Power

Before the twentyfirst century the fight for global control had been mainly centered on land power against sea power. The Cold War was between 1945 to 1991 a struggle between the dominating naval power (the United States) and its allies and the world’s most powerful land power (the Soviet Union). At the beginning of this period air power was added but did not have a decisive influence. Instead the final dimension is space power. In 2000 the United States was ready to work on a long term plan for space dominance as expressed in the report of the Commission to Assess United States National Security Space Management and Organization (December 2000). This work has, however, been slowed down by the attacks of international terrorists on Washington D.C. and New York City on September 11, 2001. As a result resources of the United States had to be diverted to the war against international terrorism and protecting the United States against weapons of mass destruction. The costs are high and the question is if the United States economy can provide funds also for developing space control, the ultimate weapon in the arsenal of what is already the world’s most powerful military.

Space Power

American investment in space has contributed to exploration, scientific knowledge and technological progress. Continuing aggressive use of space is important to the United States and the West, based on developing and preserving a strong American economy. Space is the key not only to future security, communications and finding alternative power sources (solar power) but to the overall strength of America.

After September 11 spacedriven economy is becoming even more important. Space defense systems are vital to defending the United States against further attacks.

In a Declaration of Space Leadership (House Concurrent Resolution # 267) it was in 2000 resolved:

“That space is vital to not only a peaceful, but a prosperous world. Space has been and will continue to be a critical driver of the American economy, which translates to real value to all Americans. Each of these priorities is an essential element in protecting and improving the lives of all Americans. Only true visionary leadership for space will bring forth economic leadership for future generations of Americans”.

The Space Commission chaired by now Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld concluded that space warfare is a “virtual certainty” and recommended preparation for it. In December 2000 it was stated that the United States should begin to develop the ability to protect its satellites and conduct military operations in and from space.

When Air Force General Richard Myers became chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff he had experience in what before September 11 and still is right: space-based defense, missile defense and high-tech weaponry plus eastern Asia. It has not been widely debated whether the terrorist attacks of 2001 were used to hinder preparations for American space development, defense and operations. Can this area receive enough attention in a period of lower economic growth rate, a war on international terrorism and a possible regional wars like Iraq?

Additionally there has to be further development of the national missile defense, also costly.


In Western civilization empires have been seen moving from East to West. At present, especially since 1945, the transfer has reached it’s completion in the United States, the “Universal state”, a world power representing freedom, democracy, rule of law and free enterprise. In other civilizations this phase has been the last before disintegration. But Western civilization is not subject to the same rules as others have been. The difference is technology and the power it has assumed. This enables the West to continue progress with an accelerating speed.

The military strength of the United States is a guarantee for civilizational completion in the West, but continuing strength is dependant on space power. Both Russia and PRC have developed and are developing weapons for space warfare. It is therefore imperative that the United States is able to operate freely in space. This was expressed in the following way in one of the Space Commission’s Background Papers (“Threats to United States Space Capabilities”) by Tom Wilson:

“History is replete with instances in which warning signs were ignored and change resisted until an external, “improbable” event forced resistant bureaucracies to take action. The question is whether the U.S. will be wise enough to act responsibly and soon enough to reduce U.S. space vulnerability. Or whether, as in the past, a disabling attack against the country and its people – a “Space Pearl Harbor” – will be the only event to galvanize the nation and cause the U.S. government to act”.

To safeguard the United States the aerospace industry must be supported. The report released this year by The Commission on the Future of the U.S. Aerospace Industry formed in 2001 by President Bush emphasized this:

“A strong aerospace industry is essential to enable the United States to defend itself, compete in the global marketplace, maintain a highly skilled workforce, and provide all Americans with the ability to travel safe and securely anywhere in the world”. (Commission Chairman Robert Walker, Via Satellite, December 2002).

Loren Thompson of The Lexington Institute at a 2002 Washington Space Business Roundtable called for a bold, all-American vision for the future of space commercialization to catalyze U.S. leadership in the field. Every aspect, he said, of space activity – commercial, military, governmental, and scientific – is really just an element of a single business.

Technological advance and space power depend on economic strength. This demands forward action by the ‘universal state’. It must for instance make the European Union understand American leadership. Integration of East and West on the European continent should be supported (with Turkey as a vital component). Good U.S. relations with Russia and Japan must prevail. One reason is to balance the rising Chinese power in East and Southeast Asia. A forwardlooking economic and technological national strategy is therefore vital for the United States.