The U.S. dollar is a unique currency for many reasons, though the reasons that matter most are not necessarily widely known.
Prior to 1971, the U.S. dollar was bound to the gold standard - or at least that is what the world operated under the belief of. The filmmakers highlight that the International Monetary Fund reports that in 1966, foreign central banks and governments held 14 billion U.S. dollars. While the United States did have $13.2 billion in gold reserves, most of that was needed to cover domestic holdings and only $3.2 billion of it was available for foreign holdings. What that means is the U.S. was printing more money than it could cover, and inflation naturally ensued. To quell the fire, the Richard Nixon presidential administration took the dollar off the gold standard and made it a debt-based currency.
Through various political arrangements, the filmmakers suggest that the U.S. then tied the dollar to oil trade to keep its demand up, a system that remained in place at America's convenience until the year 2000 - right before 9/11, mind you - when Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein declared he was shifting their oil trade from the dollar to the euro. This is said to be the catalyst behind all the post-9/11 military action, not anti-terrorism efforts, and that these dollar-undermining decisions by foreign governments continue to shape the U.S. military agenda today in regards to policy against Russia and Syria.
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