Experts and ordinary Americans talk about the likelihood of a civil war in the US

MOSCOW, 04 Jan 2022, RUSSTRAT Institute.

The words of CIA advisor Barbara Walter about the possibility of a civil war in the United States were not unexpected. Both American politicians and ordinary citizens of the United States have long been saying that an acute social and economic crisis in the country can lead to a bloody denouement. According to Ms. Walter, who has studied conflicts in other countries for 30 years, tension in her own homeland continues to grow “surprisingly fast”.

Let’s recall that in an interview with CNN, Barbara Walter, who is also a professor at the Department of International Relations at the University of California at San Diego, named two main signs of an approaching catastrophe. The first is the transition from democracy to anocracy, that is, under the formal guise of democratic institutions, the country is actually ruled by elites. This very “swamp” that Donald Trump tried to drain, and which, in the end, “drained Trump”. The professor did not hesitate to emphasise that it was under the previous president that the United States was a truly democratic state. As the second factor in the “likelihood of the appearance of violence”, Ms. Walter sees the speculation of certain groups on racial, cultural and ethnic conflicts, which leads to increased division among citizens.

For example, an African-American Lori Lightfoot, who holds the post of mayor of Chicago, was accused of “ethnic fraud”. Scandals do not subside around the person of Ms. Lightfoot, who openly protects BLM representatives. During last year’s riots committed by blacks, Lightfoot did not allow security forces into the city, arguing that the presence of police on the streets during the resurgence of gangs of blacks “will strengthen Trump’s position”. As a result, the robberies continued, and the townspeople suffered losses of tens of millions of dollars.

Loyalty to African-American criminal gangs led not only to an unprecedented increase in crime, but also to the death of a police officer. This event has inflamed the already difficult relationship between the Mayor’s Office and the Police Department. Lightfoot is accused of “hating law enforcement.” It is enough to go to American social forums to understand that the discontent of the US residents has reached its limit. “Feeble-minded”, “racist”, “her place in prison” is not a complete list of phrases characterising the mayor of the city. In response, Lori Lightfoot accuses her opponents of being biased against “her gender and skin colour”. As a result, on the example of Chicago, we see not only a confrontation between supporters of right and left views, managers and citizens, but also a conflict within the authorities and law enforcement.

Pressure on the American police from the Democrats is happening everywhere. The idea of “rethinking policing” has led to a record number of murders and other crimes in all major American cities. Social portal Quora.com estimates an 800% increase in crime in the infamous Portland. The same figure was repeated by Mark Episkopos, an analyst at The National Interest.

The situation becomes curious. According to EurAsia Daily last week, two politicians/members of the Democratic Party were subjected to armed attacks: Senator Kimberly Lightford – right on the highway in Illinois, and Congresswoman Mary Scanlon in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Three unknown persons, threatening Senator Lightford with firearms, stole her Mercedes Benz SUV, and Scanlon, in addition to the car, was taken away her work and personal phones and an identity card. It is noteworthy that both women are in favour of reducing the number of police officers and limiting their rights.

At the same time, the majority of citizens dissatisfied with the increase in crime deeply doubt that the Democrats will admit their guilt and stop discriminating against police officers. The reason is banal – the police sympathise with Trump. Here is how ordinary Americans characterise the situation on Quora.com: “We have seen a thousand times how Democrats bear zero responsibility for their actions and blame everyone but themselves, then blame everything on imaginary racism”, “No, the Democrats will only double their failed policies, and blame it on racist prejudice”.

Against this background, the Christmas photo of Republican Congressman Thomas Massie had a great resonance in society. The politician published a family photo where all the relatives were holding weapons. “Santa, please bring ammo!” Massie captioned the image. The time for such a joke was chosen very poorly: after another tragic shootout in an American school. The congressman was condemned even by his party colleagues, but the incident characterises the situation well, because Americans have a huge number of firearms in their hands. And as we know, if at the beginning of the stage play we see that a gun is hanging on the wall, in the second act it will definitely shoot.

Three retired generals from the Pentagon also spoke about the real threat of civil war in the United States. In an interview with The Washington Post, Paul D. Eaton, a retired U.S. Army Major General and senior advisor to the company VoteVets, Antonio M. Taguba, a major general who served 34 years in the armed forces, and Stephen M. Anderson, a retired brigadier general who gave 31 years to the US Army, named a critical date: 2024. It is this year that the next presidential election will be held in the United States. The generals noted that “the strong side – the diversity of beliefs and the memory of the past” in the American army can cause “fatal chaos within the armed forces, and this will put America at mortal risk”. All three made a public statement that “we need to start preparing for the worst now,” proposing a number of radical measures to prevent a “new total uprising”.

The opinions of ordinary Americans about the likelihood of the outbreak of civil strife are scattered, as is the American society itself. Most citizens are optimistic, despite the fact that the topic has been discussed on social platforms for several months. Thus, a certain Daniel Andrews claims that “there will be no chaos, since the Republicans are reasonable people and will wait in the wings to restore order”. Don Hank, editor of the New Silk Strategies magazine, believes “no one would agree on who they are fighting for or why. Americans are hopelessly divided”. “A civil war will not begin,” said Deputy Sheriff Paul Harding, expressing his opinion. “There will only be general apathy and ignoring stupid orders.”

“The US is not Argentina,” a certain Estanislao Deloserrata doubts. Other users are more skeptical: “Civil war is certainly possible, as it is possible in any other country where there are powerful groups with strong political differences.” There are also opposing opinions: “The civil war in its non-combat phase in the United States is already in full swing”. “Ordinary people don’t start a war. Civil wars usually start because of a battle between power groups.”

Last year’s Black Panther marches speak in favour of the latter argument. Hundreds of well-armed and equally equipped African-American militants marched through the streets of cities, promising to take power into their own hands. The organisation “Black Panthers” was created back in the 1960s. Its main task was the struggle, at that time completely justified, for the rights of the black population. Fifty years ago, this community was a fully developed political party with an ideology and a program for the protection and development of black communities. At the moment we are seeing a sharp change of course.

Charity food collections for poor families were replaced by a show of force with obvious notes of extremism.

Another group – the white far-right “Patriotic Front” – staged its march throughout Washington relatively recently. White-skinned men with US flags in their hands chanted: “Take America back!”. Previously, this organisation had the name “Vanguard of America”, but after a scandal with one of the participants who killed a man during a rally, the organisers of the group had to rebrand. A distinctive sign of young people who are in the “Patriotic Front” are round plastic shields.

The sudden appearance on the streets of the United States of nationalist groups with their own uniforms, paraphernalia and special equipment suggests that the opposing sides have good funding and wealthy patrons. This means that the scenario of the probable future of America has already been written by the powerful of this world.

Institute for International Political and Economic Strategies – RUSSTRAT

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