“The Planet’s Problem from Hell”: Will Joe Biden Appoint Samantha Power to Head USAID?

Just when it seemed that Joe Biden’s coming administration couldn’t be more of ahorror show, Axios reported that he’s likely to appoint another monster from the deep, violent know-it-all Samantha Power, to head the US Agency for International Development (USAID). I rescheduled my piece on contact tracing’s potential to further empower the surveillance state for next year’s first Black Agenda Report and instead updated my 2015 piece “Samantha Power: Africa’s Problem from Hell.”

As I said then, when Power was serving the second of her four years as President Obama’s US Ambassador to the UN, she was on a mission to save Africans from African savagery, but her largesse extends to all those who need American bombs to calm ethnic strife. She wants you to call 1-800-GENOCIDE, so she can alert the president to send in the Marines or other US Special Forces. As head of USAID, she’ll be in perfect position to wield foreign aid as a cudgel for beating foreign heads of state till they line up behind US empire, which she understands as a never-ending campaign to stop genocide and defend human rights.

Indeed, Power actually seems to believe this, unlike those who shamelessly invoke human rights but know full well that US foreign policy is about economic exploitation and/or domination of any non-NATO nation that dares to raise an independent head. In “The Education of an Idealist: A Memoir,” published in 2019, she writes of how she all but immolated in her own burning self-righteousness while reporting from Bosnia in the 1990s:

I had never been without opinions, but my certitude previously had to do with seemingly trivial issues like an umpire’s bad call in a baseball game. Now, as I researched and reflected on real‐world events, I seemed unable to contain my emotions or modulate my judgments. If the subject of Bosnia came up and someone innocently described the conflict as a civil war, I would erupt: It is genocide!”

Antiwar activist and writer David Swanson wrote one of my favorite headlines of 2017: Samantha Power Can See Russia from Her Padded Cell. In the Counterpunch piece, he shared highlights of Power’s overwrought performance at the Atlantic Council where she railed at Russia for aggression threatening the US and the global rule of law, in Ukraine, Syria, France, Germany, Montenegro and beyond, and demanded that NATO be on hair-trigger alert.

Padded cell indeed. On December 14, CNN Pentagon correspondent reported that a Russian missile drill had just triggered a false alarm at a US military base in Germany, and I can only assume that Samantha Power was reassured that they’re locked and loaded with all the latest world-ending nuclear weapons. …


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