Do the Europeans deserve what is coming to them next?

December 15, 2022

Dear friends

I was born in Switzerland, arguably the heart of Europe, and as a European by birth, if not by culture, I feel that I should address the issue of the regular European’s responsibility for what is going on in both the Ukraine and Serbia.

I don’t believe in collective guilt, so the short answer is “no”.

But I do believe in consequences and I do believe in God’s justice (and love, of course!).  In other words, I don’t think you can commit evil deeds and get away with it: sooner or later you will have to pay, especially if you fail to repent for your evil actions.

Furthermore, I do realize that the EU is a US colony/protectorate, but so was much of the world.

Why can there be real resistance to the Empire in Latin America or Africa and none in the EU?  Should Cuba begin sending soldiers, doctors and engineers to the EU (just kidding!)?

[As a kid I remember all the various protest and resistance movements we had in Europe, they ranged from the (mostly) peaceful anti-nuclear ecologists, to striking unions, to the RAF in Germany, to the IRA in Ulster, ETA in Spain and even the various Kurdish, Armenian, Palestinian and other ethnic groups engaging various degrees of violent resistance against the state.  Even in tiny Switzerland we had the Jura autonomists with some creative resistance methods!  That is not to say that I approve of all of these, only that I remember a time when there was real resistance in Europe.  Are modern Europeans capable of meaningfully resisting *anything* nowadays?  I very much doubt it]

I think that we can safely say that the EU is the most docile, cowardly and loyal colony to the Empire.  Why?  Probably because all the other colonies *knew* that their colonial status will never change under the AngloZionist rule, whereas the Europeans hoped to somehow “elevate” themselves by being Uncle Shmuel’s “poodles”.  And, after all, imperialism was born in Europe (the Crusades) and not in the New World.

You would think that by now, even the dumbest EU politician would realize that anti-Russians sanctions almost exclusively hurt Europe.  Yet, what do we see?  They are STILL at it and they are STILL doubling down, check out this headline: “EU set to freeze assets of RT’s parent company – media“.  Please read it, you will see that this is a direct and absolutely unapologetic crackdown on free speech.  And while doubleplusgoodthinking and politically correct Europeans love to (mis-)quote Voltaire and proudly proclaim that they too “I don’t agree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it” in reality they absolutely don’t give a damn.

This is nothing new.

When the AngloZionist launched a TOTALLY ILLEGAL war of aggression against the Serbian nation and a country, Yugoslavia, which was a founding member of the Non Aligned movement the proud Europeans did this (see image).

At best!

Many actively participated in the martyrdom of the Serbian nation.  Again.  The same way the Europeans betrayed Serbians during WWII.  And now, they are STILL at it (see EU threats about Kosovo).

And, make no mistake, all these years KLA terrorism in Kosovo has been fully supported and even aided by KFOR and EULEX (that latter entity modestly called “European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo“(emphasis added).

And, now again, all we hear from the Old Continent is a deafening silence.  Either that, or threats.

Long forgotten is Yehuda Bauer’s wise admonition:

Thou shalt not be a victim.
Thou shalt not be a perpetrator.
And above all,
Thou shalt not be a bystander.

By making the EU the accomplice of the US aggression on Serbia, the US has basically secured the European’s loyalty forever, since now they are not only bound by cultural or colonial ties, they are also accomplices in the rape of Serbia, the Maghreb and Mashreq, Afghanistan and all the other countries which suffer(ed) under the Hegemony’s yoke.

The AngloZionist attack on Yugoslavia was the Kristallnacht of international law, it was the event from which all of the horrors we see today sprang.  And yet, far from understanding (and nevermind admitting!) the crime of aggression (the worst crime in international law, above even genocide or crimes against humanity!) and showing some remorse, the European leaders stayed the course while the “regular” people of Europe simply ignored it all like the good little poodles they became.

And please don’t give me the argument that “we faced too pwoerful an enemy” or “we could do nothing”.  At the very least, every single European could follow Solzhenitsyn’s appeal and “live not by the lie“.  But they could not even do that.  1000 years of anti-Christian propaganda and heresy has resulted in a society which does not even believe in the very notion of “truth”.  No wonder they can’t stop lying anymore…

I think that it is a truism that if you have no self-respect you will also get no respect from others.  I also think that it is fair to say that the EU has become the most despised society on the planet.  And it is not just Putin who calls the EU a “doormat for the US” – the same opinion is held in much of Zone B.

Here is, I think, the correct answer to the question I asked above: do the Europeans deserve what is coming to them next?  Considering that what is coming to them next is entirely self-inflicted, I think that irrefutable answer is a resounding “YES!”.

If not, then who is to blame?  Russia?  The USA?  Putin?  “The Jews”?  Immigration?  Muslims?

Speaking of the USA – at least the US Americans voted for Trump (twice).  The fact that this made (almost) no difference is irrelevant, at least the people of the USA tried to resist!  In fact, even under the current crackdown against dissent, I still think that there is a much higher proportion of US Americans capable and willing to resist than Europeans.

And so today I want to do something I never did before.  I will re-post once more something I have already posted once: the interview of Col. Douglas Macgregor by Dr Michael Vlahos.  I judge this conversation to be so important that it deserves a second posting.  Before I leave you with these two men, I want to just add the following:

These two man are from the generation which I had as professors during my years in US colleges (1986-1991) and for whom I still have the utmost respect.  That does not mean that I necessarily agree with everything they did, said or wrote, not at all.  But such men I can respect not only for their formidable intellect, but also for being men of honor and truth, and real (as opposed to flagwaving) patriots of their country.

This is the generation of men like David Glantz or Lester W. Grau – US officers who truly studied, carefully, Soviet military doctrine (authors like Reznichenko, Gareev or Ogarkov) and who, through their studies, did not come to hate Russia or Russians at all, but saw them as fellow professionals and patriots.   Having had the privilege to spent some time with the folks who taught at the Frunze Military Academy (I even ended up co-authoring a small book with one of them) I can attest that the Russian top strategists had a great deal of respect for their US colleagues too.

The contrast with the Neocon freaks “from the basement” could not be bigger.

I sincerely think that in the following conversation every topic and every sentence is important because it shows what that generation of competent and honorable US Americans think of the (many) abomination(s) which we are witnessing today.  I can sincerely say that I wish them, and their cause, full success.

As far as I am concerned, we have the same enemy.

May their example of resistance (because that is *exactly* what this is) inspire more (there are already a few) Europeans to follow their example.


Finally, and in the spirit of my post today, I leave you with one superb music video from France: “Indignez-vous” by HK et les Saltimbanks (see translated lyrics below).

Who knows, maybe this video will wake-up a few more Europeans?

Machine translated lyrics:

I got up one morning, dark day of existence
I raised my voice and my fist, when the rule was silence
I’ve seen some get on trains, leave in a huge fog

I could be neither accomplice nor witness, I entered into resistance
A voice paved with hope, populated by women and men from everywhere
A choice as a matter of course, between gallows and neck rope
I came back from so far away, I give thanks to my star
Death forgot me on the way, to Dora and Buchenwald
93 years old I can believe, that my end is not very far away
93 years old here is my memory, take the greatest care of it
Indignation stubbornly, in a world on guard of you
Be one of those who walk against the wind my friends, be indignant
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
This is an old gentleman talking to you
Brandishing his star, do you hear?
So do you think that today we are missing the reasons for the uprising
When our own lives are on credit, under the dictatorship of the banks
Money commands the shareholders, they themselves command the president
Who orders ordinary people to execute well kindly
All this unsold food, so throw it in the trash
And on top of the pile of junk, pour me 10 liters of bleach
This is the world that is ours, absurd, cruel and merciless
Until that damned poverty line comes through our door
Human rights set aside, sold in individual portions
When the food crisis lingers in front of the eternal
But miracles when billions are found in the second
To save the king dollars and all the bankers of this world
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
This is an old gentleman talking to you
Brandishing his star, do you hear?
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
This is an old gentleman talking to you
Brandishing his star, do you hear?
Our chains are certainly less visible, than in the dark days of slavery
But our minds are being targeted, what have they done with our heritage
Excessive competition, generalized amnesia
Mass consumption products for an anesthetized youth
It’s high time, my friends, to finally turn on the stars again
Who have guided his whole life, this old gentleman who speaks to you
Yes I was that Armenian, I am still that German Jew
I am the Palestinian people, justice is my only side
Be citizens without borders, of those peoples who rise up
Contaminate the whole earth, with your revolts and your dreams
Be indignant it is your right, and in memory of all those
Who are still dying not to have it, this right is in fact a duty
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
It’s an old man who’s talking to you
Brandishing his star, do you hear?
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
This is an old gentleman talking to you
Brandishing the starry sky, do you stand up?
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
This is an old gentleman talking to you
Brandishing his star, do you hear?
Be indignant!
Be indignant!
He is an old gentleman, a great gentleman
Who’s talking to you, who’s talking to you

لولا دا سيلفا.. رئيس البرازيل من طبقة الكادحين

الثلاثاء 29 تشرين اول  2022

إعداد: شروق محيدله

سياسي برازيلي بدأ من عالم الفقر والنضال النقابي وحوّل بلاده إلى قوة عالمية.. من هو لولا دا سيلفا؟

فيديوهات متعلقة

طفولة صعبة ومراهقة شاقة.. كيف عاش لولا دا سيلفا حياته؟

رماح اسماعيل 

المصدر: الميادين نت

31 تشرين اول 

عاش لولا دا سيلفا حياة قاسية، بين النشأة والطفولة والمراهقة، وصولاً إلى الرئاسة، ولأن تكوينه الأول كان في وسط فقير، كبر لولا وأخذ على عاتقه راية الفقراء، وتخليصهم من الظلم.

لولا دا سيلفا في مرحلة الشباب (أرشيفية)

قبل أن يكون رئيساً للبرازيل، إحدى الدول البارزة في أميركا اللاتينية، كان الرئيس المنتخب أمس لولا دا سيلفا طفلاً عاش في ظروف صعبة للغاية، تسبب بها الفقر المدقع الذي عانت منه أسرته. 

ثم انتقل دا سيلفا إلى مرحلة المراهقة التي لم تكن أفضل من مرحلة الطفولة، حيث كان معيلاً لعائلته، مما اضطره إلى العمل في أكثر المهن صعوبة، واحدة منها أفقدته أصبعاً في يده.

نشأت شخصية دا سيلفا في بيئة قاسية، فأثّرت بشكل مباشر في تكوين شخصيته، لكنها لم تخلق منه شخصاً فظاً، بل جعلته رحيماً بمن حوله، ذاق الفقر ومرارته فأراد أن يكون جسراً ليعبر فوقه فقراء البرازيل نحو حياة أفضل.

نشأته وطفولته

“لقد علمتني أمي كيف أمشي مرفوع الرأس وكيف أحترم نفسي حتى يحترمني الآخرون”.

نشأ دا سيلفا الذي ولد في 27 تشرين الأول/أكتوبر 1945، في أسرة فقيرة، أصلها من الشمال الشرقي للبرازيل، وكانت طفولته قاسية، حيث تعلم من والدته الكثير حول الحياة ومواجهة صعوباتها.

وكتب ريتشارد بورن في الجزء الأول من كتابه “لولا البرازيل” عن طفولة دا سلفيا، وجاء عنوان هذا الجزء بعنوان “قاسية وصعبة”، قائلاً إن لولا انتمى لأسرة مكونة من 7 أولاد وبنات، سافر والده مع ابنة عمه بعد أسبوعين فقط من مولد دا سيلفا إلى ساو باولو، للبحث عن عمل ثم انقطعت أخباره بعد فترة قصيرة، فظنت والدته أنه وجد وظيفة وبالتالي سافرت هي الأخرى إلى ساو باولو ومعها أطفالها.

ولكن سرعان ما اكتشفت أن زوجها تزوج من ابنة عمه بعد أن عاشوا قصة حب سرية، ولذلك اضطرت أن تسكن في غرفة واحدة في منطقة فقيرة في هذه المدينة، ولقد لعبت “أريستيدس” والدة دا سيلفا دوراً كبيراً في حياته وتكوين شخصيته، واعترف دا سيلفا بذلك.

بدأ لولا دا سيلفا مشواره التعليمي في سن مبكر، ولكنه توقف عن التحصيل الدراسي في سن العاشرة من عمره، عندما كان في السنة الخامسة من التعليم الأساسي بسبب الفقر الشديد والظروف الصعبة التي كانت تمر بها العائلة.

ولكن تلك الظروف الصعبة ساهمت في بناء شخصيته، وظهر هذا عندما تولى حكم البرازيل حيث وجه اهتماماً كبيراً للفقراء.

مراهقة ترافقت مع أعمال شاقة

لا بد أن شخصية دا سيلفا المناضلة تعود إلى خلفية عاشها في فترة شبابه، قاسى فيها ظروفاً صعبة للغاية، حيث عمل هذا الفتى في سن مبكرة من عمره كماسح للأحذية لفترة طويلة في شوارع ساو باولو، وكصبي في محطة وقود، ثم حرفي في ورشة.

ليعمل بعد ذلك ميكانيكياً لإصلاح السيارات، وبائع خضروات لكن كل هذه الظروف جعلت منه رجلاً قوياً، وانتهى به الحال كمتخصص في التعدين بعد التحاقه بمعمل “فيس ماترا” حيث نجح في الحصول على دورة تدريبية لمدة 3 سنوات من هناك.

وتعرض لولا لحادثة في سن الـ19 من عمره، أثناء عمله في إحدى مصانع قطع الغيار للسيارات، أدت إلى فقدانه أصبعه خنصر في يده اليسرى، وكان السبب في هذا هو إهمال صاحب المصنع الذي كان يعمل به.

وبعد هذا الحادث انضم دا سيلفا إلى نقابة عمالية بهدف تحسين أوضاع العمال، لأنه عانى الكثير ليحصل على علاج آنذاك.

وأثرت تلك الحادثة في نفسية لولا، مما دفعه للمشاركة في اتحاد نقابة العمال، بهدف الدفاع عن حقوق العمال وتحسين مستواهم وتحريرهم من قسوة أصحاب الأموال وظلمهم.

دا سيلفا خلال مشاركته في حركات العمال (أرشيفية)

حياته الأسرية

لم يكتب لزواج دا سيلفا الأول الاستمرارية، حيث توفيت زوجته الأولى “ماريا دى” عام 1970،  بسبب مرض التهاب الكبد الوبائي، أي بعد سنة واحدة فقط على زواجهما في عام 1969 لتنتهي بذلك حكايتهما معاً من دون إنجاب أطفال.

وفي عام 1974 تزوج من “ماريزا ليتسيا لولا دا سيلفا” والتي أصبحت السيدة الأولى في البرازيل وأنجب منها 5 أبناء.

محطات في حياته السياسية

صبغت ظروف دا سيلفا الصعبة حياته ومعتقداته، حتى جعلته صوتاً للمستضعفين ليس فقط في البرازيل بل حول العالم، وشكلت له قاعدة جماهيرية جلها من الفقراء والعمال وكل من يرزح تحت مظلة الظلم والاستغلال.

شارك لولا في شباط/فبراير من العام 1980، في تأسيس حزب العمال، ذو الأفكار التقدمية. وفي العام 1983، ساعد في تأسيس اتحاد نقابات (CUT). وفي العام 1984، انضم لحملات المطالبة بتصويت شعبي مباشر في الانتخابات الرئاسية البرازيلية، وهذا ما نجحوا في تحقيقه عام 1989.

وخاض دا سيلفا الانتخابات الرئاسية 3 مرات دون جدوى، قبل أن يستطيع تحقيق النصر في انتخابات العام 2002، وقد أُعيد انتخابه عام 2006.

وفي تموز/يوليو 2017، أدين بتهمة غسل الأموال والفساد في محاكمة مثيرة للجدل، وحُكم عليه بالسجن 9 سنوات ونصف. وبعد فشله في قضية استئناف الحكم، تم سجنه في نيسان/أبريل 2018 وقضى 580 يوماً في السجن.

أما في نيسان/أبريل 2021 أيّدت المحكمة العليا البرازيلية إلغاء إدانات بالفساد صادرة بحق الرئيس السابق لولا دا سيلفا ما جعله مؤهلاً للترشح للانتخابات الرئاسيّة عام 2020.

وفي أيار/مايو 2021، صرّح لولا أنه سيرشح نفسه لولاية ثالثة في انتخابات العام 2022، ضد الرئيس الحالي جايير بولسونارو، وتمكن من الفوز بولاية ثالثة في 30 تشرين الأول/أكتوبر.

اقرأ أيضاً: لولا دا سيلفا رئيساً للبرازيل بعد فوزه على بولسونارو في الجولة الثانية

Leftist Lula elected Brazil’s new President-Brazil: Bolsonaro’s Wife Wears Israeli Flag While Casting Vote

Monday 31 10 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva returns to Brazil’s highest office in an incredible political comeback.

Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Brazil’s new President

Brazilian President-elect Lula da Silva assures that his country has returned to the international arena and will no longer be a “pariah”.

Lula won Brazil’s presidential elections, urging “peace and unity” after defeating far-right Jair Bolsonaro in a contentious runoff election on Sunday. Bolsonaro has not yet conceded loss, but leftist da Silva has concluded a historic political comeback.

The victory represents a stunning turnaround for leftist icon Lula, who returned for an unprecedented third term at 77 after leaving office in 2010 as the most popular President in Brazilian history.

“This country needs peace and unity,” Lula said to loud cheers in a victory speech in Sao Paulo.

Read next: Lula Da Silva leads in polls ahead of Sunday runoff in Brazil

“The challenge is immense,” he said of the job ahead of him, citing a hunger crisis, the economy, bitter political division, and deforestation in the Amazon.

Later, in front of a crammed audience of hundreds of thousands of supporters wearing red Workers’ Party clothing, he declared, “Democracy is back.”

Bolsonaro’s overwhelming silence 

Bolsonaro, 67, was silent in the hours after the result was declared.

After months of claiming — without providing any evidence — that Brazil’s electronic voting system is plagued by fraud and that the courts, media, and other institutions had conspired against his far-right movement, all eyes will now be on how Bolsonaro and his supporters will respond to the outcome.

“Anywhere in the world, the losing president would already have called to admit defeat. He hasn’t called yet, I don’t know if he will call and concede,” Lula told the massive crowd.

Read next: Brazilians vote with Lula leading the polls against Bolsonaro

Electoral officials proclaimed Lula the winner with 50.9% of the vote to Bolsonaro’s 49.1%.

The virulent hardline conservative known as “Tropical Trump,” Bolsonaro, lost the election.

While Bolsonaro remained silent, several of his most important allies publicly endorsed the results. Arthur Lira, the speaker of the lower house of Congress, said it was time to “extend a hand to our adversaries, debate, and build bridges.”

Read next: Lula ‘threatens US interests’, Bolsonaro pleading to Biden for ‘help’

‘Restore peace’ 

Lula supporters around the country began celebrations Sunday evening.

“We’ve had four years of a genocidal, hateful government,” said Lula voter Maria Clara, a 26-year-old student, at a victory party in downtown Rio.

“Today democracy won, and the possibility of dreaming of a better country again.”

‘Biggest comeback’

Lula discussed racial and gender equality in his victory speech, as well as the pressing need to address the food crisis afflicting 33.1 million Brazilians.

“Today we tell the world that Brazil is back,” he said, adding that the country is “ready to reclaim its place in the fight against the climate crisis, especially the Amazon.”

He vowed to “fight for zero deforestation.”

Lula’s win is “one of the biggest comebacks in modern political history,” tweeted Brian Winter, editor-in-chief of Americas Quarter.             

Brazil: Bolsonaro’s Wife Wears Israeli Flag While Casting Vote

October 30, 2022

Brazil: Bolsonaro’s Wife Wears Israeli Flag While Casting Vote. (Photo: via Social Media)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

Brazil’s First Lady Michelle Bolsonaro showed up at the polling station to vote in the country’s presidential elections wearing a T-shirt depicting an Israeli flag, Israeli media reported.

Her husband, current Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, is facing left-wing former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

The Times of Israel reported that “Bolsonaro, who enjoys the support of the country’s millions of evangelical Christians, pledged to move Brazil’s embassy to Jerusalem, but in the end opened a trade and investment office in the capital.”

“At a time when Brazilians vote in one of their most consequential elections in recent history, Bolsonaro shows that his priorities do not lie in the interests of the Brazilian people but in a foreign power,” Palestinian journalist and editor of The Palestine Chronicle Ramzy Baroud said.

“While this phenomenon is not confined to Brazil, as it is also the norm in American elections, it is particularly tragic in the case of Brazil, as the country faces immense socio-economic and political challenges that require true loyalty to the nation, not to Israel,” Baroud added.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Why isn’t America listening to the advice on NATO expansion of its foremost 20th century expert on Russia?

FEBRUARY 22, 2022

Robert Bridge

“Expanding NATO would be the most fateful error of American policy in the entire post-Cold War era,” George Kennan said

Robert Bridge is an American writer and journalist. He is the author of ‘Midnight in the American Empire,’ How Corporations and Their Political Servants are Destroying the American Dream. @Robert_Bridge

The US diplomat George Kennan, an astute observer of Soviet Russia under Stalin, offered his observations later in life on the question of NATO expansion. The tragedy of our times is that those views are being ignored.

Winston Churchill once famously quipped that the “Americans will always do the right thing, but only after all other possibilities are exhausted.” That bit of dry British humor cuts to the heart of the current crisis in Ukraine, which is loaded with enough geopolitical dynamite to bring down a sizable chunk of the neighborhood. Yet, had the West taken the advice of one of its leading statesmen with regards to reckless military expansion toward Russia, the world would be a more peaceful and predictable place today.

George Kennan is perhaps best known as the US diplomat and historian who composed on February 22, 1946 the ‘Long Telegram’, a 5,400-word cable dispatched from the US embassy in Moscow to Washington that advised on the peaceful “containment” of the Soviet Union. That stroke of analytical brilliance, which Henry Kissinger hailed as “the diplomatic doctrine of his era,” provided the intellectual groundwork for grappling with the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin as ultimately enshrined in the ‘Truman Doctrine’.

Inside the fetid corridors of power, however, where the more hawkish Dean Acheson had replaced the ailing George Marshall in 1949 as secretary of state, Kennan and his more temperate views on how to deal with capitalism’s arch rival had already passed its expiration date. Such is the fickleness of fate, where the arrival of a single new actor on the global stage can alter the course of history’s river forever. Thus, having lost his influence with the Truman administration, Kennan eventually began teaching at the Institute for Advanced Study, where he remained until his death in 2005. Just because George Kennan was no longer with the State Department, however, didn’t mean that he stopped ruffling the feathers of predators.

In 1997, with Washington elves hard at work on a NATO membership drive for Central Europe, particularly those countries that once formed the core of the Soviet-era Warsaw Pact, Kennan pulled the alarm. Writing in the pages of the New York Times, he warned that ongoing NATO expansion toward Russia “would be the most fateful error of American policy in the entire post-cold-war era.”

Particularly perplexing to the former diplomat was that the US and its allies were expanding the military bloc at a time when Russia, then experiencing the severe birth pains of capitalism atop the smoldering ruins of communism, posed no threat to anyone aside from itself.

“It is … unfortunate that Russia should be confronted with such a challenge at a time when its executive power is in a state of high uncertainty and near-paralysis,” Kennan wrote.

He went on to express his frustration that, despite all of the “hopeful possibilities engendered by the end of the cold war,” relations between East and West are becoming predicated on the question of “who would be allied with whom” in some “improbable future military conflict.”

In other words, had Western dream weavers just let things work themselves out naturally, Russia and the West would have found the will and the way to live side-by-side in relative harmony. One example of such mutual cooperation is evident by the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, a bilateral project between Moscow and Berlin that hinges on trust and goodwill above all. Who needs to travel around the world for war booty when capitalism offers more than enough opportunities for elitist pillage right at home? Yet the United States, having snorted from the mirror of power for so long, will never be satisfied with the spectacle of Russians and Europeans playing nice together.

As for the Russians, Kennan continued, they would be forced to accept NATO’s program of expansionism as a “military fait accompli,” thereby finding it imperative to search elsewhere for “guarantees of a secure and hopeful future for themselves.”

Needless to say, Kennan’s warnings fell on deaf ears. On March 12, 1999, then US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, an acolyte of geopolitical guru and ultimate Russophobe Zbigniew Brzezinski, formally welcomed the former Warsaw Pact countries of Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic into the NATO fold. Since 1949, NATO has grown from its original 12 members to thirty, two of which share a border with Russia in the Baltic States of Estonian and Latvia, which has been the site of massive NATO military exercises in the past.

So while it is impossible to say how things would be different between Russia and the West had the US heeded Kennan’s sage advice, it’s a good bet the world wouldn’t be perched on the precipice of a regional war over Ukraine, which has become a center of a standoff between Moscow and NATO.

Russia certainly does not feel more secure as NATO hardware moves inexorably toward its border. Vladimir Putin let these sentiments be known 15 years ago during the Munich Security Conference when he told the assembled attendees: “I think it is obvious that NATO expansion does not have any relation with the modernization of the Alliance itself or with ensuring security in Europe. On the contrary, it represents a serious provocation that reduces the level of mutual trust. And we have the right to ask: against whom is this expansion intended?”

Today, with Kiev actively pursuing NATO membership for Ukraine, and the West stubbornly refusing to acknowledge Moscow’s declared ‘red lines’, outlined in two draft treaties sent to Washington and NATO in December, the situation looks grim. What the West must understand, however, is that Russia is no longer the special needs country it was just 20 years ago. It has the ability – diplomatic or otherwise – to address the perceived threats on its territory. There has even been talk of Russia, taking its cue from NATO’s reckless expansion in Europe, building military alliances in South America and the Caribbean.

Last month, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reported that President Putin had spoken with the leaders of Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua, for the purpose of stepping up collaboration in a range of areas, including military matters.

With each passing day it is becoming more apparent that had Kennan’s more realistic vision of regional cooperation been accepted, the world would not find itself at such a dangerous crossroads today. Fortunately, there is still time to reconsider the advice of America’s brilliant diplomat if it is peace that Washington truly desires. 

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua: The US-Russia Conflict Enters a New Phase

February 7, 2022

By Ramzy Baroud

As soon as Moscow received an American response to its security demands in Ukraine, it answered indirectly by announcing greater military integration between it and three South American countries, Nicaragua, Venezuela and Cuba.

Washington’s response, on January 26, to Russia’s demands of withdrawing NATO forces from Eastern Europe and ending talks about a possible Kyiv membership in the US-led alliance, was noncommittal.

For its part, the US spoke of ‘a diplomatic path’, which will address Russian demands through ‘confidence-building measures’. For Russia, such elusive language is clearly a non-starter.

On that same day, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced, in front of the Duma, Russia’s parliament, that his country “has agreed with the leaders of Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua to develop partnerships in a range of areas, including stepping up military collaboration,” Russia Today reported.

The timing of this agreement was hardly coincidental, of course. The country’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov did not hesitate to link the move to the brewing Russia- NATO conflict. Russia’s strategy in South America could potentially be “involving the Russian Navy,” if the US continues to ‘provoke’ Russia. According to Ryabkov, this is Russia’s version of the “American style (of having) several options for its foreign and military policy”.

Now that the Russians are not hiding the motives behind their military engagement in South America, going as far as considering the option of sending troops to the region, Washington is being forced to seriously consider the new variable.

Though US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan denied that Russian military presence in South America was considered in recent security talks between both countries, he described the agreement between Russia and the three South American countries as unacceptable, vowing that the US would react “decisively” to such a scenario.

The truth is, that scenario has already played out in the past. When, in January 2019, the US increased its pressure on Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro to concede power to the US-backed Juan Guaido, a coup seemed imminent. Chaos in the streets of Caracas, and other Venezuelan cities, mass electric outages, lack of basic food and supplies, all seemed part of an orchestrated attempt at subduing Venezuela, which has for years championed a political discourse that is based on independent and well-integrated South American countries.

For weeks, Washington continued to tighten the pressure valves imposing hundreds of sanction orders against Venezuelan entities, state-run companies and individuals. This led to Caracas’ decision to sever diplomatic ties with Washington. Ultimately, Moscow stepped in, sending in March 2019 two military planes full of troops and equipment to prevent any possible attempt at overthrowing Maduro. In the following months, Russian companies poured in to help Venezuela out of its devastating crisis, instigating another US-Russia conflict, where Washington resorted to its favorite weapon, sanctions, this time against Russian oil companies.

The reason that Russia is keen on maintaining a geostrategic presence in South America is due to the fact that a stronger Russian role in that region is coveted by several countries who are desperate to loosen Washington’s grip on their economies and political institutions.

Countries like Cuba, for example, have very little trust in the US. After having some of the decades-long sanctions lifted on Havana during the Obama administration in 2016, new sanctions were imposed during the Trump administration in 2021. That lack of trust in Washington’s political mood swings makes Cuba the perfect ally for Russia. The same logic applies to other South American countries.

It is still too early to speak with certainty about the future of Russia’s military presence in South America. What is clear, though, is the fact that Russia will continue to build on its geostrategic presence in South America, which is also strengthened by the greater economic integration between China and most South American countries. Thanks to the dual US political and economic war on Moscow and Beijing, both countries have fortified their alliance like never before.

What options does this new reality leave Washington with? Not many, especially as Washington has, for years, failed to defeat Maduro in Venezuela or to sway Cuba and others to join the pro-American camp.

Much of the outcome, however, is also dependent on whether Moscow sees itself as part of a protracted geostrategic game in South America. So far, there is little evidence to suggest that Moscow is using South America as a temporary card to be exchanged, when the time comes, for US and NATO concessions in Eastern Europe. Russia is clearly digging its heels, readying itself for the long haul.

For now, Moscow’s message to Washington is that Russia has plenty of options and that it is capable of responding to US pressure with equal or greater pressure. Indeed, if Ukraine is Russia’s redline, then South America – which has fallen under US influence since the Monroe Doctrine of 1823 – is the US’s own hemispheric redline.

As the plot thickens in Eastern Europe, Russia’s move in South America promises to add a new component that would make a win-lose scenario in favor of the US and NATO nearly impossible. An alternative outcome is for the US-led alliance to recognize the momentous changes on the world’s geopolitical map, and to simply learn to live with it.

– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of six books. His latest book, co-edited with Ilan Pappé, is “Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders and Intellectuals Speak out”. Dr. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA). His website is

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