Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Hundreds turn out for Chomsky lecture: "Chomsky gave a lecture to a packed house at the University of Cyprus last night on ‘Imminent Crises’, which was attended by at least 500people inside and outside, where a projector had been set up, you could have heard a pin drop as the audience clung to his every word.... Human survival was now at stake only no one seemed to care.

"He blamed this on what he called a prevailing moral and intellectual crisis, which was at the root of all the others “and is scarcely discussed at all”."

"Chomsky said the two countries were at the heart of the world’s major energy reserves and were recognised by Washington 60 years ago “to be a stupendous source of strategic power, the strategically most important area of the world and one of the greatest material prizes in world history and constitute critical leverage against industrial rivals Europe and Asia.”

"“For years the pretext was that the threat was Russia but that was a routine reflex all over the world and rarely stands up to scrutiny,” he said. “The huge military system is no longer meant to contain Russia but it has to be expanded because of the technological sophistication of third-world powers.”"

"Chomsky also said the US was eerily able to intimidate Europe when it “shakes its fist” but he said China refuses to be intimidated. “They have a 4,000 year history of contempt for the barbarians,” he said, adding that Washington’s biggest fear is that at current growth rates China will match the US economy in a decade."

"He said the Eastern Mediterranean had evolved in much the same framework. “Turkey is serving that plan right now. Cyprus of course was of course a major British military base and was used for the overthrow of the regime in Iran in 1953, for the Suez invasion in 1956, and for the US-British military actions in response to the coup in Iraq in 1958,” said Chomsky. “As British Prime Minster Anthony Eden put it: ‘Without Cyprus Britain would have no certain facilities to protect our oil’. Of course ‘our oil’ just happens to be somewhere else by accident.”

"Asked specifically about Cyprus, Chomsky said: “The strong do as they can and the weak suffer as they must and the rest of the theory of international relations is either footnote or disguises.”"

"Chomsky said the current moral and intellectual crisis in the West was nothing more than subservience to power."

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