Warring Factions Openly Talk of Civil War
Federal Lawsuit Against California and Control of Policing Agencies
Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions has launched a lawsuit against the state of California, targeting several of its immigration laws. The Justice Department lawsuit specifically targets California laws that prevent business owners from helping immigration agents track down workers living in the country without documentation, prohibit law enforcement from notifying U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) when immigrants are released from custody, and authorize state inspections of federal detention centers.
Sessions visited California March 7 and gave a speech at an event hosted by the California Peace Officers' Association. President Trump visited on March 13. Both insist California and its laws are a threat to national security.
Trump tweeted March 13, "California's sanctuary policies are illegal and unconstitutional and put the safety and security of our entire nation at risk."
Sessions said in condemning California's laws, "There is no nullification. There is no secession. Federal law is 'the supreme law of the land.' I would invite any doubters to Gettysburg, and to the graves of John C. Calhoun and Abraham Lincoln."
Gettysburg is where Lincoln for the first time called the battle then raging in the country a great civil war and emphasized preserving the union. Calhoun was pro-slavery and an important force advocating secession of the confederacy.
Raising the specter of civil war while saying to a state called the Republic of California, which could easily stand on its own, "There is no secession," is a means to tell California it had better submit. Sessions' comments reinforce those of Trump in his State of the Union, where he called on all to unite or face being branded as enemies. Claiming California is putting the "security of our entire nation at risk," provides justification for such branding and for federal intervention.
The Civil War Scenario
Governor of California Jerry Brown responded to Sessions saying Trump is, "Basically going to war against the state of California, the engine of the American economy." Brown added that a "reign of terror" is being instituted. He also referenced the civil war pointing out that Sessions, as someone coming from Alabama, should not be lecturing about secession.
Consistent with the talk of war, headlines in both the New York Times and Los Angeles Times refer to Trump coming into "enemy territory." The headline in the Los Angeles Times reads in part, "Trump to enter enemy territory." The New York Times echoed the theme saying, "A Visit Behind the Lines: President Trump Heads to California." Its opening sentence reads, "The president arrives in California on Tuesday morning for a brief trip into what the White House presumably views as enemy territory."
The exchanges between Trump, Sessions and California officials openly reference civil war. They are an indication that the intense conflicts among the warring factions within the U.S. ruling class as they vie for political power are moving closer to open violence.
The intensifying clashes within the governing factions of the ruling elite have in no way been sorted out by Trump's victory in the presidential election. Indeed we are witnessing conflicts within the presidency and between the executive and the intelligence agencies, military and various state officials all becoming sharper with increasing tempo and instability. Fear is growing among all these contending forces that the festering civil war, which always exists behind the scenes, will break out into open violence.
In this situation, control of the many highly armed policing agencies is a major concern of the contending factions. Trump is acting to secure federal control of all policing agencies, including those at the state and local level. He is also targeting California as a means to secure its submission, and if that is not forthcoming, to justify greater federal intervention including direct confrontations between immigration agents and local police.
Attorney General Sessions bluntly says, "We are simply asking California and other sanctuary jurisdictions to stop actively obstructing federal law enforcement. California has enacted a number of laws designed to intentionally obstruct the work of our sworn immigration enforcement officers — to intentionally use every power it has to undermine duly established immigration law in America."
Sessions is emphasizing that California and all states must recognize federal policing agencies as supreme, or face the consequences. As he puts it, "California is using every power it has — and some it doesn't — to frustrate federal law enforcement. So you can be sure I'm going to use every power I have to stop them. And we intend to win."
Immigration is an area where Trump is striving to unite the warring factions behind the executive, while also putting in place justification for armed federal intervention against state and local officials who refuse to submit.
The Organized People Can Defeat the Civil War Scenario with a New Direction Towards Political Power
All these warring factions of the ruling elite are also greatly worried about what could be described as the largest and potentially most powerful faction, which is the people and their drive for a new direction for the country. This greatest of factions demands its rights and claims on society must be respected and recognized as inviolable. Renewal of democracy is increasingly on the lips of many as they seek a system of governing of, for and by the people in the modern conditions in opposition to the present unrepresentative governments of the warring factions of the ruling elite.
Fearful of the people and their increasing consciousness of the necessity for change, the current rulers of the dominant class try to divide and divert the people into lining up behind one or another of its dueling factions. Federal control of all the policing agencies is not only part of the vying for power among the warring factions, but also in preparation for contending with a broader organized resistance arising from the people who have had enough and want their views and pro-social modern outlook to take pride of place. Local and state police are highly armed and militarized for urban warfare. The federal police and military are already prepared to wage urban war against their own people as they have practiced for years in the endless U.S. wars of aggression abroad.
As the youth strengthen their resistance and many others come forward to defend their rights, the battle to win political power for the people is on the agenda. Not to become embroiled in choosing sides among the warring factions emerges as important for such a thing diverts and blocks the people from strengthening their own forces and outlook. The necessity is to stand with the people in opposition to the ruling elite, and look at the social and political conditions from the people's own vantage point, one that favors their interests and the finding of a new direction. Political power belongs in the hands of the people themselves to govern and decide. By addressing this problem of political power and how to obtain it, the faction of the large majority, the people, will prevail.