Any corner of the globe we look in to, we see that president Trump is indeed expanding the US empire’s influence and operations.

His government has ratcheted up, with new fire and veracity, covert and overt regime change operations; expansion of military bases, massive increases in bombings and civilian casualties, and belligerent escalations that put us on the brink of catastrophic war on multiple fronts.

Candidate Trump did not just lament the restraint on American war crimes around the world, but also financial restraints on the military machine.

Somehow, Trump argued that the country with the biggest military budget in the history of the world, was actually too small.

He even bragged about giving the Pentagon maximum power to act, free from annoying checks and balances. And true to his word, he also shattered all records for our already obscene military budget.

The increase in military spending alone equates to more than Russia’s entire annual military budget.

The new $750 billion war toy chest included another $705 million for Israel, $100 million to deter “Russian aggression” in the Baltics, and another $500 million to arm Ukraine, equipment that seems to keep getting into the hands of neo-nazi militias.

But the most interesting part of the budget is the spending increase for what’s called Overseas Contingency Operations, which includes maintaining troop deployments and US bases, as well as new and expanding outposts, especially in Africa.

Since 2011, this spending has been capped by a federal statute. But Trump blew the caps off by $80 billion dollars.

This could not have happened without Congress, or the full endorsement of the Democratic Party establishment. There is a bipartisan consensus in Washington to maintain the US empire, along with its 800 military bases.

Trump has taken the role of CEO of the US empire to new heights, becoming the de facto arms salesman-in-chief.

Trump made it a priority to lift Obama-era restrictions on selling weapons to countries committing human rights abuses, like Bahrain. US diplomats were also instructed to become literal conduits for weapons manufacturers and push arms sales as part of their jobs.

By pumping obscene amounts of cash into the war machine, while gleefully endorsing bombing and torture, Trump makes it clear to his friends that business will be booming for a long time.

It’s paid off for America’s five biggest defense contractors, whose stocks have more than tripled in the last couple years.

Not to mention the fact that alongside passing this record military budget, it was paid for with budget cuts to society’s most vulnerable, in particular, hungry children.

But Trump is not just making sure kids in the United States go hungry, but children in every country it deems our enemies. Because the US dollar drives the global economy, the empire frequently wields sanctions to bend countries to its will.

Make no mistake: sanctions are war. And not in a hyperbolic sense. They are real attacks, that kill real people.

The impact of sanctions is never discussed in the US media. They’re always treated as a kind of “soft” solution, with the assumption that they only affect a society’s corrupt elites. These are assumption nowhere close to the reality.

Sanctions hurt the most vulnerable––and by design. That’s why they intentionally target medicine, clean water, and access to food.

The logic of sanctions is, if you kill and starve enough innocent civilians, they will blame their own government, rise up and overthrow them so American force don’t have to waste any blood overthrowing them.

Their genocidal impact cannot be overstated. Looking at Iraq alone, US sanctions in the 90’s, that blockaded medicine from the country, killed 500,000 Iraqi babies. That is the true face of sanctions.

The most destructive application of sanctions has been on Iran, where Trump upended Obama’s historic nuclear deal and added 143 sanctions that have since debilitated their economy.

Then there’s North Korea, where people give Trump credit for peace between the North and South. Amazingly, despite the media’s rhetoric of Trump bowing down for dictators, he has installed 80 new sanctions on the DPRK.

In Syria, Trump has authorized a stunning 287 new sanctions, almost double the amount applied under Obama. He’s administered 43 sanctions on Libya so far.

In Russia and Ukraine, Trump has defied the notion he is a puppet of Putin by sanctioning the region 105 times so far, for everything from annexing Crimea, to the alleged meddling in the 2016 election, to the attempted poisoning of Sergei Skripal.

Not to mention the 43 “cyber sanctions” put on the figures alleged to have hacked into the DNC.

Next is Venezuela. Even though Obama added 7 sanctions in his term, Trump’s laser focus is set on destroying the country once-and-for-all. He’s already employed 63 new sanctions to strangle Venezuela and undermine any chance for economic recovery.

He imposed many more sanctions on independent, progressive countries like Cuba and Nicaragua,

With all the praise about the most diverse Congress in history, you can’t find any diversity in opinion when it comes to continuing US imperialism. 

We can’t let the democrats steer the resistance away from where it needs to be––in the streets, linking our struggles, fighting the expansive US empire.

Mint Press / ABC Flash Point News 2019.

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