US President Donald Trump. Picture: REUTERS/CARLOS BARRIA
US President Donald Trump. Picture: REUTERS/CARLOS BARRIA

Nathan Cheiman evidently believes “real politick” should be the premise of SA’s foreign policy, and that we should cosy up to the world’s bullies. But are gangsters who lie, cheat and steal really the sort of friends Cheiman wants SA to cultivate (“Wrong Sort of Friends,” April 24)?

US secretary of state Mike Pompeo, a former director of the CIA, on April 22 inadvertently but revealingly described US foreign policy and practice as “we lie, we cheat, we steal”. In blatant violation of international law, the CIA has instigated “regime change” in more than 80 countries since 1953.

Under Donald Trump the US has now “declared war” on Venezuela and Iran, and intends on May 2 to declare “financial war” against China, Japan, India, South Korea and Turkey because they persist in buying oil from Iran. In contrast to incessant lies by Trump and Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu that Iran is a threat to world peace, even the CIA acknowledges that Iran abandoned its nuclear weapons ambitions as long ago as 2003. Why the hypocrisy and silence about Israeli nuclear weapons?

The international monetary system has been on a dollar standard backed by Saudi oil (black gold) since 1973. Iraq’s Saddam Hussein and Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi were murdered when they demanded payment in euros and/or gold instead of dollars. Yet China pays for both Saudi and Iranian oil with yuan instead of dollars, and similarly, India pays Iran in rupees.

Trump’s financial war against China et al will inevitably fail, but in the process will collapse the dollar and cause worldwide economic depression. Trump’s expectations of “making America great again” by weaponising the dollar will, ironically, also advance the end of the US empire and its war business funded by Saudi oil.

Trump’s failed effort to destabilise Venezuela has nothing to do with either democracy or human rights: Venezuela just happens to have the world’s largest oil reserves, which Trump and his cronies wish to steal.

Terry Crawford-Browne
Via e-mail