Transcript of radio commentary that aired in June 2004 on KUNM public radio 89.9 fm in Albuquerque
By Arjun Makhijani
The G-8 landed on Sea Island, Georgia recently. No that’s not an advanced Gulf Stream jet. It’s the political collective leaders of eight countries who meet annually to try to agree on how to run the world, or at least to make the rules for it.
This is no representative democracy at work. It looks more like the South African apartheid diehards getting together. The G-8 represent less than 15 percent of the world’s population. The melanin content of the G-8 is about the same too, especially when we remember that the Japanese were regarded as “honorary Whites” in South Africa.
Like South African Whites, they do represent most of the money. They don’t quite have a monopoly of nuclear weapons but they have more or less 98 percent of them. They had only half of them when they first started to meet. It was the G-6 then, nearly thirty years ago. The meetings were initiated by France in the wake of the collapse of the Bretton Woods monetary system — in which the dollar was linked to a fixed price of gold — and the oil crisis of 1973. The others present were the United States, Britain, Germany, Italy, and Japan. Soon Canada was let in, and that’s how it stayed, until the Soviet Union crumbled, when Russia joined.
This meeting had a slight hint of that new world. It had, for the first time a dash of socio-political melanin in the form of an Arab. The interim President of Iraq was there — a straw in the wind that the U.S. war aim of long-term occupation of the oil fields may be failing. He hinted, ever so carefully, that Iraq may ask the U.S. troops to leave in a year or so. The United States got a CIA operative appointed as Prime Minister of Iraq, a sort of reminder of the Bantustan days of the apartheid regime. But it could not get its way on the presidency.
The time has come to consign global apartheid to the dustbin of history — to restructure the United Nations, to create a monetary system that is not a competition between the dollarcrats and eurocrats, to create world in which money and things are not more mobile across borders than people, and a world in which we have gotten rid of nuclear weapons for good.
To read more about global apartheid, the Iraq war, and the struggle for universal freedom, see the website of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, www.ieer.org. You’ll find there a special issue of our newsletter, Science for Democratic Action from June 2003. In it I discuss the views on freedom of President Bush, John Ashcroft, Milton Freidman, Mahatma Gandhi, and Martin Luther King. You can also get a copy of my book Manifesto for Global Democracy from that website or from Apex Press, New York. This is Arjun Makhijani.