Steve Bannon may be the most powerful person in Washington, D.C. He is trusted absolutely by Donald Trump, and the far right wingnuts who helped elect Trump consider Bannon to be their leader.
So it is indeed concerning to listen to remarks Bannon made in March of 2016 regarding the American relationship with China. On his radio show, Bannon commented:
“We’re going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years, aren’t we? There’s no doubt about that. They’re taking their sandbars and making basically stationary aircraft carriers and putting missiles on those. They come here to the United States in front of our face — and you understand how important face is — and say it’s an ancient territorial sea.”
Should we take Bannon’s comments seriously or just chalk them up to posturing? The Chinese certainly take them at face value. Just last week a senior Chinese military official said that military conflict with the US is “not just a slogan” and that it was becoming a “practical reality.” That same official also called for increased military deployments in the East and South China Seas as a way to guard the area.
Bannon’s comments should also be seen in conjunction with those of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who announced yesterday that the United States was putting Iran “on notice” for a recent ballistic missile test and attack on a Saudi ship.
As if all this saber-rattling isn’t frightening enough, Trump also allegedly warned the president of Mexico that he might send American troops across the border to deal with “bad hombres” on Mexican soil. And while he was at it, the illegitimate American head of state managed to alienate one of our closest allies, Australia.
What does all of this portend for the future of international relations? It seems clear that neo-cons in the administration–Flynn, Mike Pence, and Bannon–will not be satisfied until we are in a shooting war with Iran. They have been wanting such a conflict since the war in Iraq began in 2003.
Prediction: By July of this year, the United States will be engaged in two military campaigns, probably in Iran and Syria. Seems Trump and Bannon have learned nothing from history.
Here’s Bannon talking about war with China in 2016:
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org