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Playing War Games, and Preparing for the Real Thing

A U.S. Navy carrier battle group in the South China Sea, 2021.


A U.S. Navy carrier battle group in the South China Sea, 2021. Photo: U.S. Navy Handout   

Ever wonder how a ruling class mentally conditions its people to fight and die to defend the empire? Here’s one way they’re trying to get you ready.

On May 13, the NBC show Meet the Press broadcast a half-hour special segment depicting “war games” between the U.S. and China. A “blue team” representing the U.S. and a “red team” representing China faced off, with members of both teams coming from top U.S. “think tanks,” former government officials, and current Congresspeople, both Democrat and Republican.

Chuck Todd with a retired general, U.S. Air Force, on NBC “Meet the Press”


Meet the Press on NBC broadcast a half-hour special depicting “war games” between the U.S. and China.   

The “red team” was generally seen as being the first to actually attack the other side, and try to prevent the “blue team” from bringing much of its power into play quickly. In some scenarios the conflict escalated and spread right away—with China soon bombing U.S. bases in Japan and Guam, and attacking Hawai’i, Alaska, and San Diego.

When the game was over, Mike Gallagher, a Republican Congressman from Wisconsin, concluded that the “blue team”—the U.S.—has to be “ready to start taking out their [China’s] ships while they’re in port, while they were transiting across the strait (that separates Taiwan from China)….” And Michèle Flournoy, former U.S. Under-Secretary of Defense, said the “key insight” from the exercise is that “If you [meaning the U.S.] haven’t spent years preparing for this, then you’re going to be behind the eight-ball the whole way.”

But there are some things not factored into this game, some things you’re not supposed to let enter your mind when you’re playing (or watching others play) a game like this. Why does the U.S. have a megabase” in Guam in the first place? (Guam is an island over 6,000 miles from Los Angeles.) Why didn’t the game note that the U.S. Navy and Air Force routinely prowl the seas and airways in and around the South China Sea—and which team do you think represented a country that actually borders the South China Sea? Which do you think represented a country that takes for granted it should have its military all over the planet? (Hint—it’s the one with 750 bases in 80 countries and the tri-color flag.) And to step away from the “game” a minute—how do you think the U.S. would react if Chinese aircraft carriers and battleships regularly cruised through the Gulf of Mexico, or off the coast of Long Island? How would the U.S. respond if China tried to build a “megabase” in, say, the Caribbean island of Barbados?

Gallagher and Flournoy pointed to precisely what the Biden administration is orchestrating right now. They are preparing not just the murderous functionaries of empire like those who participated in the “game,” but people who watch and are conditioned by shows like Meet the Press.

Don’t fall for it. Stop thinking like an American, and start thinking about humanity.

Bob Avakian on Biden, Putin & Xi Jinping: Imperialist Gangsters and the Need for Revolution!

An excerpt from The Bob Avakian Interviews on The RNL Show.

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