Super-States in Core Eurasian Geopolitics – Utopian Proposition?

November 08, 2022

Source

by Straight-Bat

  1. Introduction

A question that troubled me often involves different kinds of “state apparatus” witnessed in the history of core Eurasia – principalities, city-states, kingdoms, empires, nation-states etc. Every possible combination of a geographical region (within core Eurasia) and a particular epoch represents a specific historical manifestation of a particular type of geopolitical entity – hence, in the 18th century while Caspian Sea region hosted a number of principalities like emirates/khanates, the Chinese mainland hosted an empire. The question I struggled with: is there a particular form of geopolitical entity that can be termed as better (or worse) for the society compared to the others? An extension of the same question would be whether the history of humankind follows any particular trajectory so far as development of political institutions are concerned. An offshoot of that question is what Marx famously referred to as the ultimate destination of the destiny of humankind – (class-less) ‘stateless’ society. While searching for a plausible response to my query, I also discovered an interesting phenomenon: a specific geopolitical entity can be beneficial and detrimental to the interests of a society at the same time, and with passage of time its impacts on the society transforms dynamically. Thus, an ‘empire’ could be destroyer of the society in a small principality while acting as a facilitator for trade and commerce for the rest of empire – Mongol empire in 13th century was a classic example of this. Russian empire elicits an example of how the positive role of the ‘state apparatus’ in providing arable land in central Asia to the peasants during 18th-19th century transformed into state repression (guided by the large land-owning kulaks) in the second half of the 19th century. Yet another interesting case study could be how the central Asian region around Caspian Sea-Aral Sea-Amu Dariya-Syr Dariya acted as the trade routes (a significant part of the famous Silk Route stretched from eastern China to Mediterranean Sea) that benefitted its aristocracy much more profoundly than the commoners who would actually execute the physical process of goods transportation and arrangements of other logistics. So, there is no straight answer to the basic question I mentioned in the beginning. Rather, I am happy to put the question in an altogether different format – assuming the Marxist idea of a stateless (class-less) society as inevitable, my quest would be to explore which kind geopolitical entity is suitable for bringing about such revolutionary change in the society to transform the selfish unjust and unequal society into a just and equitable society where 90% of the population, the plebs not only gained equal rights legally but, more importantly, they exercise those rights.

Another question, not completely unrelated, that has been bothering me relates to the geography, and history of the single geographic landmass that is known in academic books in two parts – Asia, Europe. To be specific, I have been deliberating on the question whether core Eurasia could really be treated as the ‘heartland’, control of which is a prerequisite to exercise total control over the world? Before one could sincerely take up the issue for a discussion, he/she must be able to grasp the definition of ‘core Eurasia’. Geologically, ‘Eurasia’ is a tectonic plate that lies under much of Europe and Asia. However, there is no well-defined geographic boundary of ‘core Eurasia’ in international politics. The European (geopolitical) strategists and Asian intellectuals converge on this subject remarkably well — the landmass that lies between Pacific Ocean in the east and river Vistula plus Carpathian mountain range in the west, and between Arctic Ocean in the north to the line joining Arabian Sea coast-Himalayan mountain range-South China Sea coast in the south can be termed as ‘core Eurasia’. This particular question has a definite answer – ‘core Eurasia’ indeed can be assumed as heartland because of two reasons. Firstly, the countries that dot the entire landscape of core Eurasia are not only home to 25% of the global population currently but has enough arable land, water, and forest resources for a healthy and continuous population growth. Secondly, the entire landmass of core Eurasia hold deposits of minerals, fossil fuels, rare earth, and gems in disproportionately high quantities compared to its share of total surface area of earth. Hence, the human civilization can grow, sustain, and flourish as a stand-alone phenomenon in core Eurasia even if civilizations in other regions of the world fail to sustain – this, in my opinion, is the single most important characteristic of core Eurasia why it may be considered as the ‘heartland’. Readers who are conversant with the works of geopolitics pundits like Brzezinski will easily conclude that I don’t subscribe to Brzezinski’s thought on this issue which was centred around ‘exercising power to control the world’ as he noted, “The control over Eurasia would almost automatically entails Africa’s subordination, rendering the Western Hemisphere and Oceania geopolitically peripheral to the world’s central continent.

Having established the fact that there is ample justification for treating core Eurasia as the heartland and having identified the objective of my primary quest as finding out the most appropriate type of geopolitical entity that would facilitate a just exploitation-free society, let me clarify why I’m spending time and effort to author this article. There is a specific background why I’m inclined to get into such a subject. Three to four thousand years back my ancestors roamed in the vast Eurasian steppes with an objective of finding a large inhabitable space to settle down – destiny called them to move to the Indus valley from where they finally spread across the entire south Asian subcontinent. Till now, in our community, when a member passes away, the (direct) descendants have to tie a piece of kush (i.e. long grass) to our body during the grieving period – thus, during the most difficult days of life when one’s parent departs, we remember our origin, the steppe grassland! Apart from that, during the initial 1200 years of current era, my region and people were intellectually involved with the Chinese and Tibetan scholars in a two-way exchange of knowledge, spirituality, religion, trade, and martial art. Buddhist scholars from eastern region of Indian subcontinent traveling to Chinese mainland (including Tibet) were as common as scholars from Chinese mainland staying in Buddhist universities located in the eastern region of Indian subcontinent. Needless to say then, I am concerned about core Eurasia and all those people who inhabit these lands now.

This article is fundamentally based on my thoughts, and I don’t claim to anchor these thoughts on any academic mooring. However, I will present facts based on historical and current affairs and apply rational logic (with minimum role of sentiment) to present my hypothesis. I don’t intend to hurt anybody’s sentiments or sense of patriotism or sense of duty towards own community. I ONLY wish that this article should settle down in the collective memory of all core Eurasian citizens as an abstract idea – may be a ‘utopian’ one – which, in future by 2050 CE, should be discerned by the wise people of all countries and communities, across core Eurasian landmass.

  1. What is Wrong with core Eurasia Currently?

Quite in disagreement with many alt-media reporters and commentators, I would like to argue that core Eurasia presently is going through a seemingly end-less turmoil – economic, political, social, cultural – majority part of which is orchestrated by the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy. I will only list down the current disorders in core Eurasia that has geopolitical and geo-economic implications:

  1. South Korea – not only South Korea (a phantom-state that got created after WW-II) has been turned into a low-cost military-industrial complex to supply military machinery to countries that can’t afford American and European weapons, but the entire South Korean society also has been infested with immoral vulgar and decaying influence of ‘Jewish’ Christianity [link 🡪 https://www.zerohedge.com/medical/scariest-halloween-my-life-120-dead-south-korea-after-crowd-crushing-incident ]. South Korea is a malignant cancer in core Eurasia that has been growing phenomenally with the capital investment by the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy during past 5 decades protected by USA military bases. Unless appropriate treatment is carried out, it will remain a consistent threat to security of core Eurasia
  2. Taiwan – not only Taiwan (a phantom-state that got created after WW-II) has been turned into a ‘giant weapons depot’ by the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy to cause major destruction of industrial belts and technology hubs along the south-east coastal regions of Chinese mainland, but the elite Taiwanese society has also been thoroughly westernized along with tie-up with USA on manufacturing of weapons [link 🡪 https://www.newdelhitimes.com/us-considering-joint-weapons-production-with-taiwan/ ]. Taiwan is another malignant cancer in core Eurasia that has been growing no less remarkably than South Korea (with the capital investment by global oligarchy). Unless appropriate treatment is carried out, it will remain a consistent threat to security of core Eurasia
  3. Kazakhstan – largest of the artificial-states that came into existence in central Asia after the Soviet stooges of the global Zionist-Capitalist clique demolished the USSR in 1991. Over the decades Kazakhstan has become the anchor state for NATO expansion into core Eurasia – in order to develop the interoperability between elements of its armed forces and those of NATO countries, since 2006 Kazakhstan has hosted annual military exercises called “Steppe Eagle”. ‘Kazakhstan’s PfP Training Centre was accredited by NATO as a Partnership Training and Education Centre in December 2010’. The most dangerous activity on the soil of Kazakhstan is the research on biological warfare by USA funding [link 🡪 https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202203/1254486.shtml ]. If Taiwan and South Korea are malignant tumors on the periphery of core Eurasia, Kazakhstan is right at the centre! It will certainly become a future threat to the stability and prosperity of core Eurasia
  4. Kyrghizstan-Tajikistan-Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan – other phantom-states that came into existence in central Asia after the planned demolition of the USSR. Significant social-political-environmental issues exist in these 4 state-lets – (i) Wahhabism, the version of Sunni Islamic extremism is rampant in all these 4 phantom-states coordinated by Turkey plus Saudi Arabia based oligarchy, and the most preposterous matter being that in each of these 4 phantom-states the citizens are instigated on the basis of ‘nationalism’ (against other 3 nationalities) and ‘religion’ (against secular state policy, forcing the government to initiate policies that would force the people adopt Arab-Islamic names, wear hijab for women, abstain from music and sports, exclude women from public life, teach only religious education in Arabic language, preach religious militancy through Islamic jihad, etc.); (ii) Decades of extremely high rate of water consumption have taken their toll on these societies – rapid environmental degeneration; (iii) elites from politics, judiciary and bureaucracy have been involved in operating drug trafficking business in order to extract illicit profit from the drug trade (which primarily originated in Afghanistan coordinated by the Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy mostly based out of Anglo countries and Israel). Undoubtedly these ‘four sisters’ can create more headache for core Eurasia in future
  5. Mongolia – A country where the society apparently loathes to deliberate on modernization of education, industry, and communication. Along with Kazakhstan, Mongolia adds to the geopolitical uncertainties right in the centre of core Eurasia. Till date Moldova offers minimum destabilization to core Eurasia as compared to other regions listed here. However, the local oligarchy is working hand in glove with the global Zionist-Capitalist clique to control the government and force it towards joining NATO block. This country might become a future threat to the security of core Eurasia
  6. Afghanistan – A country where poverty and lawlessness are the general norms, Zionist-Capitalist clique has been running world’s largest drug cartel since past three decades. During the same period, Wahhabism took a new name in Afghanistan – Taliban. These two problems got exacerbated with collapse of government services, and curtailment of foreign aid. Sudden and unilateral withdrawal of USA and NATO military forces from Afghanistan was NOT really sudden – the entire game was planned well in advance. USA based Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy hoped that the ‘Islamic Wahhabism’ will continue to flourish in Afghanistan and Talibani ideology and militants will become the largest export of Afghanistan [link 🡪 https://www.fpri.org/article/2022/05/northern-afghanistan-and-the-new-threat-to-central-asia/ ] Even if the current Taliban government appears to be taking governance seriously, there is every possibility that in the near future, Afghanistan will become the hotbed of ‘Islamic movements’ which will be utilized to overthrow or destabilize governments across core Eurasia
  7. Transcaucasia region –apart from the central Asian artificial countries, Transcaucasia was another region where dissolution of Soviet Union created ‘unstable states’. Unlike other 8 regions listed here, this is a region where two rounds of war were fought resulting in much destruction. Subversion is a norm here rather than exception. A deep analysis would indicate that the intra-regional politics is compelling Georgia-Armenia-Azerbaijan to engage in bitter struggle among themselves to diminish each other thereby fettering countries like Russia and Iran with the problem of refugee and migrants. Undoubtedly Turkey (as a coordinator of Islamic militant gangs that directly/indirectly work for the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy) and USA governments are managing the puppet show staying behind the curtain, but it is doubtful to what extent that will cause rupture in the Eurasian fabric. Having said that, it must be noted that an unstable Transcaucasian region can create troubles for the trade-routes that crisscross this region used by core Eurasia and other countries in Asia and Europe
  8. Moldova – along with Ukraine, Moldova adds to the geopolitical uncertainties in the eastern side of core Eurasia. Till date Moldova offers minimum destabilization to core Eurasia as compared to other regions listed here. However, Zionist-Capitalist clique works overtime here also to control the government and force it towards joining NATO block. The country might become a future threat to the security of core Eurasia
  9. Ukraine – another large artificial-state that witnessed a territorial expansion entirely due to historical undercurrents. Ukraine has been converted into a ‘giant fortress’ by the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy which would have joined NATO to host missile bases (if Russia not made its geopolitical demands that Ukraine will never join NATO clear to the Ukraine government in 2021 end). But, the most dangerous situation for the entire planet is: Ukraine is rushing ahead with research and development of (i) biological, (ii) chemical, (iii) nuclear warfare with funding and technology tie-up with institutions based out of USA, and other Anglo countries. on manufacturing of weapons [link 🡪 https://www.unz.com/mwhitney/uncle-sams-bio-weapons-extravaganza/ ]. If an iota of sanity was left with Ukraine government, they would have concluded a treaty with Russian government within one month of special military operation accepting the terms set by Russia. Instead, the skeletons are coming out of the Ukrainian closet – the Ukrainian government for a long time has been 100% owned by the Jewish oligarchy who wants to mobilize the last citizen of Ukraine because the USA and Anglo countries wish to fight and destroy Russian land and society. Russia and core Eurasia must not allow continuation of such a toxic entity in core Eurasia
  10. Baltic region – region of 3 phantom-states that got created due to the dissolution of the USSR. This region is special because the Zionist-Capitalist global oligarchy has been driving the government policies such that during past three decades, depopulation across the entire Baltic region became a continuous and consistent social phenomenon. There is a robust background to this – the Hegemon wanted the region absolutely free from any settlement in order to (i) convert the entire Baltic Sea coast into a giant naval and land army base, (ii) restrict Russian access to Baltic Sea as much as possible, (iii) invade Kaliningrad (old Konisberg) and destroy the Russian military base. The USA government has been pursuing policies on these (unstated but obvious) objectives for decades [link 🡪 https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Falling-In_Deterrent-Value-of-HNS-in-the-Baltic.pdf ]. Unless appropriate actions are taken, it will transform into a nightmare for the security of Russian society and land impairing core Eurasian architecture considerably.

Except Mongolia and Afghanistan, all other entries in the above mentioned list have been identified as phantom-state / artificial state – Eurasian history corroborates my statement. Few common traits exhibited by the listed entities are: (i) local oligarchy has been in the drivers’ seat to control power and wealth to the detriment of the common population, (ii) an inward-looking religious / nationalist posturing is a common thread across the region, (iii) global Zionist-Capitalist forces are using the local oligarchy to foment socio-political tensions that will divert the people’s hatred towards core Eurasian powers like Russia and China, (iv) USA, Israel, Anglo countries and NATO countries use Turkey and Japan as the spearheads to control these regions, (v) through multilateral institutions like SCO, EAEU, CSTO and geo-economic programmes like BRI China and Russia try to influence the political and economic viability of these regions. Even though (iv) and (v) balance each other, the entire core Eurasia may become an extremely unstable region if the Zionist forces succeed to set a conflagration simultaneously across 3 / 4 entities (which is a wet dream of the Zionists).

Since this article deals only with core Eurasia, I won’t raise geopolitical and geo-economic problems that beset Asia and Europe. However, countries like Japan, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Syria, Turkey, Balkan countries, Poland, Germany, France, Italy, and the UK present two types of problems through their hard and soft power: (a) presently all of them participate (most of them willingly) in the common global conspiracy hatched by the Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy against core Eurasian countries and societies, (b) historical role played by almost all of them to foment geopolitical instability in their own region with/without involvement of the global Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy.

  1. Political-Economic Integration in Core Eurasia Initiated by the Mongol Empire

Like it or dislike it, loathe it or love it, romanticize it or demonize it, one can’t simply ignore the role of Mongol empire in shaping the core Eurasian landmass – it is a well-established historical fact that, the Mongol empire shattered the medieval era geopolitics in the core Eurasian region applying ruthless force wherever they faced resistance. Though a united Mongol empire didn’t last even fifty years in the 13th century after demise of Chinghis Khan, the remnants of Mongol khans remained rulers in many smaller regions across core Eurasia for another five centuries as ‘Khanate’ entered the lexicon of modern political studies. If the current doldrums in core Eurasia is put under scanner, a strange observation can’t be avoided – many a current geopolitical trouble has its root in the Mongol-instigated geopolitics during the late medieval-cum-early modern era. That indicates we can’t avoid to briefly explore the geopolitical contour of the Mongol empire during the 13th century. (It will be a splendid historic inquiry if the evolution of Mongol empire is analyzed from 1227 CE when Chinghis Khan died till 1911 CE when Mongolia declared independence as a ‘modern’ state – but that is beyond the scope of this article).

While Chinghis Khan was the creator and the first emperor of Mongol empire, after his death at 1227 CE, the descendants while expanding the boundaries to cover entire core Eurasia also engaged in internecine warfare among themselves – after the death of Mongke Khan, by 1260 CE the empire was transformed into a confederacy of 4 empires, and by end of the 14th century each of those empires again got split into multiple khanates ruled by Chinghis Khan’s successors or non-Mongol rulers with kinship to Mongol aristocracy. The following table 3.1 provides a brief tentative geopolitical summary of 13th century core Eurasian landmass:

Table: 3.1 >

1227 CE1300 CE
<< UNIFIED MONGOL EMPIRE >>– Regions of current Peoples Republic of China >Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Tianjin, Beijing, Hebei, Shanxi, north-east part of Shandong, north-west part of Gansu, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region except south-east part.– Currently Mongolia– Currently Kazakhstan– Currently Uzbekistan– Currently Turkmenistan– Currently Kirghizstan– Currently Tajikistan– Regions of current Afghanistan >Northern part (one-third of state)– Regions of current Pakistan >Northern part (one-fifth of state)– Regions of current Russian Federation >— Far Eastern Federal District >Primorsky Krai, Jewish Autonomous Oblast, Khabarovsk Krai (except one-third part in the north), Amur Oblast, Zabaykalsky Krai, Republic of Buryatia, Sakha Republic (except two-third part in the north)— Siberian Federal District >Irkutsk Oblast, Tuva Republic, Altai Republic, Altai Krai, Novosibirsk Oblast, Omsk Oblast (except northern half), Kemerovo Oblast, Republic of Khakassia, one-third in south of Krasnoyarsk Krai— Ural Federal District >Southern half of Kurgan Oblast, southern half of Tyumen Oblast, one-fourth of Chelyabinsk Oblast in south<< YUAN EMPIRE >>– Regions of current Peoples Republic of ChinaAll except three-fourth of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region– Currently Mongolia– Currently North Korea, South Korea– Currently Taiwan– Regions of current Russian Federation >— Far Eastern Federal District >Primorsky Krai, Jewish Autonomous Oblast, Khabarovsk Krai (except one-third part in north), Amur Oblast, Zabaykalsky Krai, Republic of Buryatia, Sakha Republic (except two-third part in north)— Siberian Federal District >Irkutsk Oblast, Tuva Republic, Republic of Khakassia, southern half of Krasnoyarsk Krai– Regions of current Myanmar >North-eastern part (half of the state)– Regions of current India >A sizeable stretch of land in north-east abutting south Tibet
<< CHAGATAI KHANATE >>– Regions of current Peoples Republic of ChinaThree-fourth of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region– Regions of current KazakhstanTwo-fifth of the state in east and south– Currently Kyrghizstan– Currently Tajikistan– Regions of current UzbekistanAlmost entire state except land around Aral Sea– Regions of current AfghanistanOne-fourth of the state in the north-east
<< GOLDEN HORDE >>– Regions of current Russian Federation >— Siberian Federal District >Altai Republic, Altai Krai, Novosibirsk Oblast, Omsk Oblast, western half of Tomsk Oblast— Ural Federal District >Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug (except a small strip in north-east), Kurgan Oblast, Sverdlovsk Oblast, Tyumen Oblast, Chelyabinsk Oblast— Volga Federal District— North Caucasian Federal District— Southern Federal District— Central Federal District >One-third land in south of the district— Crimea– Regions of current BelarusAll except northern one-fourth of landmass– Currently Ukraine– Currently Moldova– Regions of current Romania >One-third land in the east abutting Moldova border
<< ILL KHANATE >>– Currently Iran– Regions of current IraqHalf of the state in eastern and northern side bordering Iran, Syria– Regions of current SyriaOne-third of the state in north-eastern side– Regions of current TurkeyHalf of the state in eastern side– Currently Armenia– Currently Azerbaijan– Currently Turkmenistan– Regions of current Afghanistan >All except one-fourth of the state in the north-east– Regions of current Pakistan >Baluchistan province in the south-west side

It can be noted from Table 3.1 presented above and Figure 3.1 given below that by 1300 CE, core Eurasia (except unpopulated northern most lands of Russia near arctic) was under the sway of the Mongol aristocrats – scholars estimated that the Mongol confederacy was spread over around 24,000,000 km2 of land creating the largest land empire in history [Link 🡪 https://maps.lib.utexas.edu/maps/historical/shepherd_1911/shepherd-c-092.jpg ].

Fig 3.1 >

As Morris Rossabi mentioned in the article ‘Mongol Impact on China: Lasting Influences with Preliminary Notes on Other Parts of the Mongol Empire’ (refer ACTA VIA SERICA Vol. 5, No. 2, December 2020) “perhaps the Mongols’ most important contribution was to bring East Asia, the Middle East, and Europe in touch with each other and that Eurasian history began with the Mongols’ creation of the largest contiguous land empire in world history. The Mongols also built splendid cities, promoted the economies, fostered the sciences, technologies, and the artistic advances in their domains.” Discerning readers can’t deny this observation by Rossabi. During the course of past half century, other scholars from different countries also conclusively proved that the Mongol empire facilitated trade and commerce across all regions of Asia and Europe while contributing quite substantially towards propagation of the Sciences and the Arts.

  1. Why Super-States and Key States in core Eurasia?

Question: What is the mission I’m talking about? Why can’t the current state of affairs in core Eurasia fulfill the mission? Why a reorganization of geopolitical framework of core Eurasia is a necessity?

Answer: ‘The ultimate objective will be to bring complete dignity, widest possible freedom, and maximum possible development for every citizen of the communities in core Eurasia. Every human being (irrespective of his/her background identity like age, sex, ethnicity, language, religion, region, state) will become free from hunger-disease-insecurity-injustice, will spend time in socially useful productive work, can indulge in literature-art-music-cinema, can do research in science-mathematics-life science’, can be at ease equally with technology as well as social studies, ‘can seek knowledge of ‘life’-‘society’-‘world’-‘universe’, can seek entertainment and pleasure at leisure time, without any of these things being morally or physically harmful to any section or people’ of the proposed super-states and key states in core Eurasia.

Most of the existing states are unable to offer such environment to its people not because the countries are poor, (on the contrary core Eurasia is the richest zone of the earth) – the oligarchy which is well-entrenched in the ruling edifice of every country, have been exploiting the population ruthlessly with the help of Zionist-Capitalist globalist clique. Zionist-Capitalists would love if core Eurasia becomes uninhabited and they become the master of the land and its natural resources so that the planet earth nourishes only the ‘golden billion’ (one billion population in Anglo countries, Jews, Europeans). Hence current geopolitical setup is not conducive to such humanitarian missions.

For fulfilling the mission, I mentioned above, core Eurasia should be free from the self-serving elites-aristocrats-oligarchs who misuse their political power to achieve their personal objectives – to gain power and to gain wealth. Most of the artificial-states should be dissolved and made part of one/two super-states. Without geopolitically balanced architecture destabilization in all conceivable and unconceivable forms will continue to ruin core Eurasia. Thus the current borders between so-called states should be reoriented so that,

  1. The historical background of (mid-19th century) landmass-and-community relationship gets due importance
  2. ‘Fake states’ don’t act as Zionist-Capitalist agents for destabilization in core Eurasia
  3. Core Eurasian state-actors can always remain united to become a ‘role model’ for all other regions.

In core Eurasia, during my lifetime, most of the old geopolitical issues resurfaced – some through crude bloody incidents while some others in a very subtle way. So, whether such a dispute is currently a burning issue or a dormant dispute, leaders need to look into those and try proactively to resolve it so that geopolitically balanced architecture can be achieved. Let me list down the key issues, and key actors, and suggest the resolutions considering the historical timeline from the Mongol Empire in 1227 CE to the 1848 Revolution as the ‘age of empire building’ in core Eurasia beyond which change of borders through war would not be considered as ‘valid’ (for setting our benchmark we assumed such validity). There will be certainly a question asked from every quarter – on what basis such a logic is being considered? As such, there can be no definite answer that would please everyone, rather I would like to say, that there will be no basis that is acceptable to everyone! So, I chose 1848 CE as the historical watershed because in the early modern era 1848 CE was the year when plebeians of different societies across entire Europe and some parts of Asia really did stand up against centuries old exploitation-injustice-inequality inflicted by the patricians (even if the commoners were beaten back everywhere, the patricians were forced to start counting its probable demise since then). So a reorganisation of core Eurasia into super-states and key states is suggested as below:

Table: 4.1 >

Geopolitical Restructuring Issue in Core EurasiaProposed Resolution
Significant Actor – Super-state in Russia
At the time of the dissolution of the USSR in 1991 CE, USSR encompassed the following geographical regions apart from Russia:1. Baltic Europe – Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania2. Eastern Europe – Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova3. Transcaucasia – Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan4. Central Asia – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, TurkmenistanThere were some remarkable aspects of the territorial evolution of Tsarist Russian empire and the USSR:(a) NONE of the above mentioned regions/sub-regions were annexed into the Tsarist empire with their 1991 borders. Reorganization of the administrative zones within the empire was a regular exercise for ALL heads of state at different points of time. Few of those were:(i) In 1708 CE Tsar Peter the Great divided the empire into eight administrative divisions called guberniyas (Archangelgorod, Azov, Ingermanland, Kazan, Kiev, Moscow, Siberia, Smolensk)(ii) In 1727 CE Catherine I enacted another reform – a total of 166 uyezds was established(iii) By 1910 CE 104 administrative governorate units (Oblast and Governorate) were formed(iv) After 1922 CE Bolshevik Party undertook a series of restructuring that transformed the earlier architecture of administrative organization(b) Historically, some regions have been under the Russian influence (political, cultural, economic) for a very long time before the proposed the cut-off year of 1848 CE — in 1721 CE Livonia, Estonia, Ingria, and Karelia were annexed from Sweden; through second and third partitions in 1793 CE and 1795 CE, Russia acquired southern part of current Latvia (south of Riga), most part of current Lithuania including Wilno (Vilnius), most part of current Belarus including Minsk, Pinsk, Brest, most part of Right Bank Ukraine that forms current Ukraine including Lutsk, Rovno, Zhytomyr, Bratslav, and Galicia from Poland-Lithuanian Commonwealth; Bessarabia (two-thirds of which lies within modern Moldova) was taken over by Russian Empire in 1812 CE defeating Ottoman Empire; parts of Georgia, Dagestan, parts of northern Azerbaijan, and parts of northern Armenia were annexed from Persian Empire by Russian Empire in 1813 CE; in 1828 CE, Persian Empire ceded Caucasian region (present-day Armenia, Azerbaijan) to Russian Empire; Kazakh-Junior Horde and Kazakh- Middle Horde declared to be loyal Russian citizens in 1732 and 1740 respectively, but full control of Russia got established by 1798 CE; Kazakh-Great Horde khanate was annexed into the Russian empire in the 1820s, when the Great Horde khans choose Russian protection against Kokand Khanate(c) On the other hand it can be easily noted that, the Tsarist empire continued with invasions and annexations after 1848 CE in the central Asia and Pacific ocean coast regions (refer the map given in Fig:4.1 that is copied from Encyclopaedia Britannica: Link 🡪 https://www.britannica.com/place/Russian-Empire ) – Sakhalin island was seized from Japanese kingdom in 1875 CE by Alexander II; khanates of Khiva (1873 CE), Bukhara (1866 CE), Kokand (1876 CE) were annexed by Alexander II; Alexander III annexed Pamir plateau in 1893 and land of Teke Turkomans in 1881 CE; Alexander III annexed the coastal and northern part of Manchuria through a series of unequal treaties forced upon Qing China (the Treaty of Aigun in 1858 and the Treaty of Peking in 1860)1. All countries / regions of a country that were part of Russian empire in 1848 CE should move back to the Russian super-state:– Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania– Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova,– Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan,– Kazakhstan (except south-eastern part – Dzungaria)2. Russia should hand over such territories to other countries that were annexed from them after 1848 CE:– Outer Manchuria i.e. modern-day Russian areas of Primorsky Krai, Jewish Autonomous Oblast, Khabarovsk Krai (southern two-thirds), Amur Oblast, Zabaykalsky Krai to China3. Regions which were part of Russian empire/USSR between 1849 and 1991, and became independent since 1991, should continue their current geopolitical identity as ‘state’:– Four Central Asian countries i.e. Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan were formed as administrative regions within Russian empire / USSR out of the lands from five annexations by Tsars after 1848 CE – Khanate of Khiva, Khanate of Bukhara, Khanate of Kokand, Pamir plateau, and land of Teke Turkomans
Significant Actor – Super-state in China
By 1848 CE the Qing empire territories included the following regions apart from (directly) Ming-ruled mainland China including Hainan and Taiwan islands:1. East Asia – Manchuria (Nurgan RMC of Ming empire), Inner and Outer Mongolia2. South-central Asia – Qinghai (Dokham RMC of Ming empire)3. Central Asia – Xinjiang (that included some parts of eastern Kazakhstan land from Lake Balkhash up to the current international border with China in the north-east, east and south direction, this region was annexed by Russia in 1860, 1881)4. South Asia – Tibet (U-Tsang RMC and Elis military-civilian Marshal of Ming empire; it included Aksai Chin region of Ladakh and south-eastern regions of Tibet which were seized by British after 1860 CE)The key aspects of the territorial evolution of Qing Chinese empire are:(a) The policy of partitioning the empire into several administrative regions underwent substantial change when the Qing empire replaced the Ming empire. While Ming emperors governed peripheral regions like Tibet, Manchuria through setting up Regional Military Commission, Qing empire established administrative regions across the entire empire.(b) Unlike Russian Tsarist empire, the Chinese Qing empire ceased expansion by 1800s. When in 1911 CE the Qing empire was abolished (refer the map given in Fig:4.2 that is copied from Wikipedia: Link 🡪 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qing_dynasty#/media/File:China_1911_es.svg ) the following regions were found to be parts of neighbouring states, not China:(i) a part of western Xinjiang of Qing China (some parts of currently eastern Kazakhstan land from Lake Balkhash up to the current international border with China in the north-east, east and south directions)(ii) Outer Manchuria, a part of Manchuria of Qing China (currently part of the Far Eastern District of Russia)(iii) Outer Mongolia, a part of Qing China (currently Mongolia state)(iv) western Ladakh and south-eastern Tibet, both part of Qing China (part of modern-day India)(v) Taiwan island, a part of Qing China (currently Taiwan state)1. All countries / regions of a country that were part of Chinese empire in 1848 CE should be transferred back to the Chinese super-state:– Taiwan– The islands in South China Sea– Outer Manchuria– Western Xinjiang (Dzungaria)– Aksai Chin and South-eastern Tibet2. Regions which were part of Chinese empire between 1848 and 1911, and became independent since 1911, should continue their current geopolitical identity as ‘state’:– Mongolia which declared independence from China in 1911 occupies outer Mongolian regions of Qing China
Significant Actor – Key State in Iran
Hardly any change in borders happened in Iran after 1848 CE. Hence the country, centre of one of the oldest empire in the history of humankind doesn’t pose any geopolitical challenge.Not Applicable
Significant Actor – Key State in Korea
One of the biggest geopolitical tragedy happened in the Korean Peninsula. Following Japan–Korea Treaty of 1905 Korea became the protectorate of Imperial Japan. After Japan’s surrender in 1945 in September People’s Republic of Korea was established by Lyuh Woon-hyung. In February 1946 Lyuh Woon-hyung was murdered by USA led oligarchy. Thereafter in the south of 38th parallel Syngman Rhee established Republic of Korea in August 1948 while in the following month Kim Il-sung established Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in the north. China and North Korea lost about 1 million people as KIA and MIA. A divided Korea is a continuous reminder about creation and growth of a malignant tumour that was implanted in core Eurasia by the USA and Anglo oligarchy after WW II.USA needs to pull out military forces lock, stock, and barrel; a united Korean government to be formed with representation from ALL regions, professions, and parties. Both the military should combine into a single force. China and Russia to ensure peace during the transition period.

Looking at the above table 4.1, one would conclude that I have identified only four entities as ‘significant actor’ in core Eurasia. Yes, if one looks into this essay in 2122 i.e. hundred years from now, the reader will find the accuracy and appropriateness of this essay in both its assumptions (that, across this humongous landmass named as ‘core Eurasia’ there are only 4 communities who are not spineless flunkies of Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy and who are not mindless followers of Anglo-Jewish culture) and its suggestions (that, in order to bring out the best possible environment for a community to survive and thrive, geopolitical fabric needs to be reorganized in terms of two super-states and two key states, all of whom will maintain very close coordination among themselves on all geopolitical and geo-economic matters). Finally, the proposed geopolitical restructuring should seriously consider (this is the first time that I’m mentioning this point as an IMPORTANT task) a formal alliance among the 4 significant actors in core Eurasia.

Fig: 4.1 🡪

Fig: 4.2 🡪

Table: 4.2 >

Geo-economic Restructuring Issue in Core EurasiaProposed Resolution
1. Any community, any country, any state can be built ONLY with a population that is large enough to sustain the cultural, economic, political, and technological progress achieved by it. Russia, Iran, North Korea in its current form don’t show healthy population growth, it doesn’t generate hope for future – I will rate this problem as severity 1 for all 3 actors.China, with world’s largest population till 2022, has been beset with continuously reducing rate of population growth – I will rate this as severity 2 for China.2. Any country, any state can organise itself ONLY on the basis of own currency or currency of a neighbour with whom two-way trade is normal. Apart from that, the dependence on Dollar (as exchange currency) must be brought down to a minimum level to avoid the fate of Russia.for China, USA debt holding over 1 trillion is a problem of severity 1, for USA will certainly weaponize the debt at the earliest ‘opportunity’ (like, China re-establishes its control over Taiwan).3. Russia-Iran-China all 3 actors are very rich in terms of natural resources. Energy, metal and mineral, rare earth elements – all three types of deposits are present in substantial quantities in core Eurasia.Import and export of such ‘natural resources’ should be aimed at enriching the commoners in Asia-Africa-South America continents as much as possible.4. SCO-BRI-EAEU should be coordinated simultaneously for economic rejuvenation of core Eurasia as well as Asia-Africa-South America continents as much as possible.As a parallel activity, encourage non-Anglo non-Jewish communities/ countries (like Germany, Japan, Italy, France, Sweden etc.) to enhance their participation in trade and commerce with core Eurasia through multilateral global platforms like RCEP.5. Minimize use of technology, hardware, and applications owned by the Zionist-Capitalist oligarchy in the areas of international finance, defence, aerospace, and social networking.As a parallel activity, encourage non-Anglo non-Jewish communities/ countries (like Germany, Japan, Italy, France, Sweden etc.) to enhance their participation in trade and commerce.Government should move on two fronts:(i) encourage early marriage and childbearing at social and cultural platforms(ii) introduce new rules and laws to facilitate marriage and childbearing for working persons, professionals, even unemployed(i) A gold-backed currency or a basket of Eurasian currencies needs to be pushed(ii) Reduce holding of US treasury rapidly by increasing central bank holding of gold to maximum level(i) These countries should restrict export of raw material and processed minerals to Europe, North America, Australia(ii) They should also ensure that other countries in core Eurasia do the same as much as possible(i) Transform the BRI format so that organizations from the participating countries get around 40% share of the capital expenditure.(ii) Bring in German, Japanese, Italian, French companies into BRI projects for supply of some machinery etc.(i) Identify areas where all 4 actors or any 3 actors will join hands to form business entities. Invest in research and development jointly.(ii) Bring in German, Japanese, Italian, French companies selectively.

Obviously a logical question will arise – ‘how such a massive transformation will happen’ and ‘when’. Local oligarchy, nationalist intelligentsia, bureaucracy, business people, and military forces are the groups who have vested interests in perpetuating the current geopolitical framework. In normal situations (where international relations follow unipolar world order) such geopolitical transformation can hardly be talked about. But major upheavals in politics, economics, and environment will compel the 90% population (the plebs) to think and accept such transformation that will bring momentous change in their lifestyle. It will be the responsibility of ALL patriotic leaders, communist party members, community elders in ALL countries to prepare themselves and their countries/communities towards accepting positive transformation.

It can be found in history that, time and again strong leaders created new geopolitical reality (sometimes because of moral high ground and in other times using superior political economy) that created new rules and orders tearing apart the existing order – I will strongly advocate such occurrence if and only if the common people of a country / region find better standard of living in the newly created architecture. Living in the 21st century I won’t criticize Chinghis Khan’s brutality against his adversaries – on the contrary, I would ask two simple questions – (i) was there a single king/emperor in the medieval era across the world who didn’t resort to mind-blowing violence to create a psychological defeat in the opponent camp? (ii) wasn’t it that the Mongol empire brought a new era in trade and commerce across the entire continents of Asia and Europe benefitting the living standard of the inhabitants? Hence I proposed here that the creation of super-states in core Eurasia in the near future – Eurasian Union of Russia and Asian Union of China – would go a long way to create a better society that ushers a new dawn of humanity! Unless the above mentioned territorial reorganizations are undertake, in my opinion, the construction of those super-states can’t really take-off!

Since I’m only discussing about core Eurasia, I’m not mentioning the case of a super-state in the Indian subcontinent. Actually India should be viewed as a super-state which should include half of what is currently Pakistan (Punjab and Sindh regions are truly such historically ‘Indian’ regions without which Indian map can’t be even be thought of! Since the beginning of ancient civilization Punjab and Sindh were the core of all Indian kingdoms/sultanates/empires until 1947 CE when British power connived with ALL key political parties like Congress, Muslim fundamentalists, and Hindu fundamentalists to divide India). But we are not discussing that.

  1. Conclusion

By now, most of the esteemed readers have already formed an opinion about this article and my objectives. To conclude this write-up, let me handle those probable clarifications from an ideological perspective:

1) An “expansionist and empire-apologist”: To be frank, this is the most significant stigma that could be assigned to this article. For a while, this article can truly create such a sentiment among the readers. Fundamentally, I’m a Marxist, and one of the final objectives of a Marxist socialist society is borderless society! Hence, on an ideological platform, I actually condemn ‘empire-building’ as a process of geopolitics. Let me state that, ‘Empire’, as a concept, is the most reactionary, naked, and violent form of ‘state apparatus’. Hence, I can never become an apologist for empire building. If so, the question still remains: what is the objective of this article?

Well, every historic ‘empire’, in reality, has different background and different characteristics. While Spanish, Portuguese, British and French empires built after 1496 CE across the world basically attempted to ‘get rid of’ the aboriginal population as much as possible, and pillaged the foreign land and resources to enrich the elites and oligarchy of those invading powers, completely contrasting behaviour could be noticed in case of the Chinese, and Russian empires. Russian and Chinese empires not only brought order and security to the people of the region they annexed but the trade and commerce got invigorated across the Eurasian landmass benefitting the commoners. Essentially while the European powers brought colonial imperialism, the Eurasian powers acted as the agents of change towards win-win modernisation.

I foresee that before different countries could even imagine a borderless landmass and a society free from exploitation (as the ultimate objective of Marxism), a country would require:

(a) A ‘state’ that ensures education, healthcare, housing, and employment for ALL citizens

(b) A ‘state’ that brings ALL races, religions, languages living in a landmass under an umbrella with an objective of shared security

(c) A ‘state’ that creates enough of social capital as a harbinger of economic prosperity while sustaining the fragile environment

Let me confess, while looking back into the history, I find ONLY Chinese and Russian super-states as the agents who would provide framework for achieving the above results. So, I propose building of such super-states as the prelude for state-less society.

2) A “reactionary feudalist pseudo-Marxist”: There will be certainly a group of dogmatic Marxists who would suggest that this article is actually a step backward which point towards rejuvenation of medieval feudal era political environment. This article doesn’t discuss the ‘class struggle’, neither this speaks about a ‘proletarian revolution’. Actually, looking everything under the sun through the prism of Marxism doesn’t help any Marxist – neither a revolutionary communist party member nor a revolutionary communist state. Abolition of ‘state apparatus’ was never identified by Marx as an immediate objective for a socialist society! On the other hand, if a truly welfare state apparatus can arrange education, healthcare, housing, and employment to all citizens of core Eurasia, people would actually gain through better living standard. And they would further realise how a state apparatus based on Marxist socialist socio-economic political thoughts would transform the current society into a more egalitarian society ensuring truth, justice, and equality and that prevail over deception, injustice, and inequality.

These readers, mostly from Europe and North America, are NOT bothered about a real democracy where the freedom of speech goes hand-in-hand with the freedom from hunger and malnutrition, and right to vote a political party is coupled with right to education and employment. They are actually bothered about the re-emergence of core Eurasia as the centre of global trade, commerce, science, and technology – instead of expressing that point categorically which otherwise would smack of racism and racial hatred (towards Asians), they wrap it up with half-baked politically correct jargons (like democracy, human rights, blah blah).

For these type of readers, I have two simple questions:

(a) What did the Greek city-states mean by ‘democracy’? (Clue – slaves who toiled ceaselessly in ancient Greek city-states or Roman Empire were never counted as citizens). It was not certainly meant for all people of their society, so what do the pseudo-socialists and lapdog-intellectuals licensed by the Zionist-Capitalist clique wish to achieve through the so-called democracy?

(b) What did the European aristocrats and oligarchs mean by ‘human rights’? Most of the regions in North America, South America and Australia continents were subjected to genocide by those same sociopath-cum-psychopath European (aristocrat and elite) marauders who, apparently set up world’s ‘finest’ democratic state apparatus like the ‘USA’, ‘Canada’, ‘Australia’, so why shouldn’t they pay respect to the concept of human rights and leave those continents lock stock and barrel one fine morning (better late than never)?

Anyway, by promoting super-states like Russia and China, I’m looking forward to a future reinstatement of Marxist ideas and philosophies among the people of core Eurasia. And, please don’t say that Marxist ideas and organisation could flourish in liberal capitalist democratic countries in Europe and North America (where the entire leftist/socialist political spectrum has been hijacked by the opportunist corrupt labour aristocracy since early 1890s) – those entities can’t be termed as ‘country’ or ‘democracy’, they are simply a bunch of oligarchs thriving in their respective ‘estate’ using lies and deception that can be termed as ‘demon-cracy’!

3) A “utopian arm-chair strategist”: To those readers who would identify me as such, I have a simple counter question – could anybody in 1942 even dream of the boundaries of USSR and PRC that were internationally accepted in 1950? What appears as ‘utopian idea’ may become a reality just 10 years from now – history of core Eurasia time and again proved it! After all, exactly hundred years back the foundation was laid for the first super-state in the history of humankind – USSR.

By and large, there are another two categories of shaming which would be applicable to the readers who consider themselves as ‘nationalist’:

i) A “Russian stooge and Chinese agent”: many readers who hail from countries – Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Moldova etc. – that have been proposed here as phantom-states would like to curse me as a ‘Russian’ agent and/or a ‘Chinese’ agent. This is another stigma that fits in with this narrative. Particularly, many of the readers find any statement that talks in favour of China and Russia, as support to ‘authoritative and despotic foreign regimes’. Let me respond to this – on the face of it, my proposition appears as a simple ancient trick of ‘annexation of more landmasses. But, it isn’t so – I consider the people as the primary subject of ‘patriotism’ and the landmass as the secondary subject. Let me elaborate on this through a historical example. Alexander Nevsky served as the Prince of Novgorod (1236–56 and 1258–1259), Grand Prince of Kiev (1236–52) and Grand Prince of Vladimir (1252–63) during the most difficult times in medieval Rus’ history. He paid a tribute to the Mongol Golden Horde while fighting against ALL European powers approaching from north-west. In my opinion, Nevsky revealed the finest expression of ‘patriotism’ that flowers in the well-being of the people of his kingdoms while paying less importance to geographical expansion of the landmass he dominated! Nevsky was bothered about his society, culture and commerce, hence as soon as he identified that European powers would destroy exactly those aspects he stood as a rock against such invasions.

Let me again acknowledge, while looking back into the medieval and modern history, I find ONLY Chinese and Russian super-states as the institutions that can ensure exchange of ideas, knowledge, goods, and services among different regions and different societies across the world without pontificating.

ii) An enemy to Russia and China: many readers who hail from current RF and PRC, would stand exactly opposite to the readers from say, Kazakhstan or Ukraine! They would come back asking why (his/her) country should give away even an inch of land to the neighbouring country. Ultimate tragedy of human life is that they always seek ‘ownership’ of almost everything under the Sun, we forget that everything – land, water body, forests, mountains, deserts – belong to mother earth. Humankind is nothing but a small part of the nature – we don’t own anything; we need to be grateful to nature for providing ALL means for living our life! If giving away some part of one country to another country proves beneficial for both the communities, why not? True patriots ALWAYS bother about the advancement of economy and culture of the people if required with little adjustments. Every society has a memory and every community has a tradition centred on some regions which they consider as inalienable part of their history – Ukraine and Belarus are such regions for the Russian society, south Korea is such a region for the Koreans, Manchuria and Tibet are such regions for the Chinese, Punjab and Sindh provinces of Pakistan are such regions for the Indians!

I’m certainly not an enemy of any country or any society or any people! On the contrary, (as I laid out in the introduction) I consider myself as a part of the people of core Eurasian landmass. I’m against hypocrisy, insanity, deception, vulgarity and above all, inequality and injustice – history alone proves that ALL these banes witnessed by the humanity since ‘civilization’ dawned, were caused by the 1% aristocracy-elite-oligarchy in EVERY region across the world! The proposed two super-states, in my opinion, will go a long way to provide a stable environment and opportunity for amelioration of the plebeian lives in core Eurasia. It will usher the beginning of a new era!

Short profile:

Straight-Bat is an Engineer by profession, currently pursuing higher study in Economics. A keen observer of global affairs, Straight-Bat enjoys being an analyst of history, politics, economy, and geopolitics.

One of the few decade-old members of The Saker blog-site, Straight-Bat finds this website as a capstone entity that is dedicated to focus on truth and justice in public life across the world.

The west’s Plan B: Secure the realm

Having failed in preserving the unipolar order, the west will resort to Plan B – reviving a bipolar world based on the ‘civilized’ west and the ‘barbarian’ rest.

June 27 2022

Photo Credit: The Cradle

By Fadi Lama

Plan A: Global Hegemony

By the late 1990s, it was clear that a China-led Asia would be the dominant economic, technological and military power of the 21st century.

The late Polish-American diplomat and political scientist Zbigniew Brzezinski spelled out in 1997 that the way to control Asian growth, and China’s in particular, was to control global energy reserves.

The attacks on 11 September 2001 provided the “catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor” to set military intervention plans in motion. As noted by US General Wesley Clark, “in addition to Afghanistan, we’re going to take out 7 countries in 5 years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran.”

Energy reserves of these countries – in addition to those already controlled by the west – would result in western control over 60 percent of global gas reserves and 70 percent of global oil reserves.

However, the west’s direct military intervention wars failed, and subsequent proxy wars using assorted Al Qaeda-affiliated Islamists failed as well.

Rise of the ‘RIC’

In the two decades since Brzezinski laid out his strategy and the west immersed itself in failed wars, the Eurasian sovereignist core of Russia, Iran, and China (RIC) were heavily focused on national development in all arenas, including the economic, technological and military fields, and physical and social infrastructure development.

By 2018, it was clear that plans for western control of global energy reserves had failed and that the RIC had overtaken the west in many, if not most, of the aforementioned sectors.

As a result, the RIC were able to project power, protecting sovereign nations from western interventionism in West AsiaCentral AsiaSouth America and Africa. In Iran’s case this also involved a direct military response against US forces, following the assassination of the late General Qassem Soleimani. Making matters worse, the gap between the west and the RIC is widening, with little chance for the former to catch up.

The impossibility of sustaining western global hegemony had become evident amid continuous erosion of western power and global influence, which coincide with a commensurate expansion of RIC global influence, both of which necessitated an alternative strategy: a Plan B, as it were.

Plan B: Securing the realm

In view of the irreversible widening of this gap, and the growing global influence of the RIC, the only feasible strategy for the west would be to ‘terminate the competition’ by splitting the world into two regions, one in which the west has ironclad control, where western “rules” reign, and is divorced from the RIC-influenced region.

The current geostrategy of the west is the imposition of an Iron Curtain with the inclusion of as many resource rich nations as possible. Only by realizing the west’s actual geostrategic objective is it possible to understand the reason behind its apparently self-defeating actions, specifically:

  • Imposition of draconian sanctions on Russia that hurt the west far more than Russia.
  • Increasing tensions with China and Iran whilst engaged in a proxy war with Russia.

While the world is fixated on the conflict in Ukraine, the geostrategic objective of the west is being steadily advanced.

Sanctions: the catalyst of crises and coercion

The widely accepted explanation is that the west imposed draconian sanctions with the expectation that it would turn the ruble into “rubble,” create a run on banks, crash the Russian economy, weaken President Vladimir Putin’s grip on power, and pave the way for a more amenable president to replace him.

None of these expectations materialized. On the contrary, the ruble strengthened against the dollar and the euro, and the Russian economy is faring better than most western economies, which are witnessing record inflation and recessionary indicators. To add insult to injury, Putin’s popularity has soared while those of his western counterparts are hitting record lows.

The west’s after-the-fact explanation that sanctions, and their repercussions, were not well thought out, do not hold water.

Often overlooked though, has been the devastating impact of these sanctions on the Global South. US economist Michael Hudson argues that the Ukraine war is merely a catalyst to impose sanctions that would result in global food and energy crises – allowing the US to coerce the Global South to be “with us or against us.”

Indeed the impact of these crises are compounded by the earlier detrimental impact of Covid lockdowns. Food, energy and economic crises are further exasperated by the US Federal Reserve raising interest rates which directly impact the debt servicing ability of Global South countries, placing them on the edge of bankruptcy and at the mercy of the western-controlled World Bank and International Monetary Fund — the instruments for effectively locking these nations within the western realm.

Thus, despite the very negative impact of sanctions on western countries, these nevertheless fit perfectly with the strategic objective of locking in as many Global South countries within the western sphere of influence.

Tensions with China and Iran:

Driving a wedge between Eurasian powers has been an axiom of western geostrategy, as expressed eloquently by Brzezinski: “The three grand imperatives of imperial geostrategy are:

  • to prevent collusion and maintain security dependence among the vassals,
  • to keep tributaries pliant and protected, and
  • to keep the barbarians from coming together.”

In this regard, raising tensions with Beijing and Tehran, while the west is involved in a proxy war with Russia, appears contradictory.

However it starts to make more rational sense when contextualizing the strategy as one aiming to establish an “Iron Curtain” that separates the world into two: one is the western Realm, and the other is Brzezinski’s ‘Barbaria,’ at the core of which are the RIC.

Two worlds

The western realm will continue on its path of neoliberalism. Yet due to significantly smaller populations and resources under its control, it will be significantly impoverished compared to present, necessitating imposition of police states for which Covid-19 lockdowns provide a glimpse into the socio-political future of these states.

Global South countries under the western realm will continue down a path of increased poverty, requiring management by dictatorial governments. Political turbulence is expected as a result of deteriorating socioeconomic conditions.

‘Barbaria,’ as reflected in the very diverse political and economic models of the RIC, will have a variety of development models, reflecting the civilizational diversity within this realm and the mutually beneficial cooperation which currently exists between the RICs, and between the RIC and others.

What about the Global South?

Facing the perfect storm of food, energy, inflation and debt servicing crises, many Global South countries will be in a very weak position and may be readily coerced into joining the western realm. This will be facilitated by the fact that their economic, and consequently, political elites, have their interests aligned with the western financial construct – and will thus wholeheartedly embrace joining the west.

The inability of west to provide effective solutions to these crises, coupled with their colonial past, will make joining Barbaria more attractive. This can be further influenced by the RIC providing support during this crisis period.

Russia has already offered to assist in the provision of food to Afghanistan and African countries, while Iran notably provided gasoline to Venezuela during its fuel crisis. Meanwhile, China has a successful track record of infrastructure development in Global South countries and is spearheading the world’s most ambitious connectivity project, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

As Russian economist and Minister of Integration for the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) Sergey Glazyev already hinted when describing the emerging alternative global financial network: “Countries of the Global South can be full participants of the new system regardless of their accumulated debts in dollars, euro, pound, and yen. Even if they were to default on their obligations in those currencies, this would have no bearing on their credit rating in the new financial system.”

How many Global South nations can the western realm realistically expect to hold onto when Barbaria offers a clean slate, with zero debt?

Where does this leave West Asia?

The Axis of Resistance will be further aligned with Barbaria; however, political elites in Iraq and Lebanon favor the western realm. Thus, a politically turbulent period is expected in such countries. Due to the inability of west to offer economic solutions, coupled with the clout of local Resistance parties in these countries, the end game for Iraq and Lebanon is ultimately to join Barbaria, along with the de-facto government of Yemen.

Oil sheikhdoms of the Gulf are creations of the west and therefore belong in the western realm. However due to events of the past two decades, this may not necessarily be where they all line up.  The west’s debacles in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen have convinced the sheikhdoms that the west has lost its military edge, and is no longer able to offer long term protection.

Furthermore, unlike the west, Barbaria has a track record of not directly meddling in the internal affairs of nations, a factor of significance for the sheikhdoms. Recent diplomatic tensions with the west have been evidenced by Saudi and UAE leaders rejecting the oil production demands of the US administration – an unprecedented development. If offered convincing protection by Barbaria, oil sheikhdoms may decide to join it.

End of an Era

Retrenchment of the west marks the end of a long era of western expansionism and oppression. Some date this era back six centuries to the start of European colonization in the fifteenth century. Others date it even further back to the Great Schism and the subsequent Crusades.

The latter are supported by a statement attributed to British Field Marshal Edmund Allenby on entering Jerusalem in 1917:  “only now have the crusades ended,” and the fact that church bells chimed worldwide in celebration of the occupation of Jerusalem.

During this era, hundreds of millions all over the globe were massacred, civilizations were wiped out, billions suffered and still suffer. To state that we are living in epochal times is a gross understatement.

Naturally the end of such an era cannot happen peacefully; the wars of the past 30 years are witness to this.

The regression of western initiated wars from direct military intervention (Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq) to wars by proxy (Syria, Iraq, Ukraine) augurs well, as it reflects the realization by the west that it is no match militarily to the RIC. Had there been any lingering doubts, the war in Ukraine has put them to rest. Thus it can be concluded that the worst is over.

Internal instability in some Global South countries will exist in the near future; a consequence of the struggle between diverging interests of populations and neoliberal ruling elites. Decline and impoverishment of the west vs. the rise of RIC will favour the resolving these struggles in favour of the peoples and alignment with RIC.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

أفكار غربية مِن خارج الصندوق: روسيا هي مَن يكسب الحرب

 الخميس 23 حزيران 2022

وليد شرارة

خلال الأشهر الماضية، أعرب عدّة مسؤولين أميركيين وغربيين عن اقتناعهم بأن الحرب في أوكرانيا ستكون طويلة. آخر هؤلاء هو الأمين العام لحلف «الناتو»، ينس ستولتنبرغ، الذي دعا من واشنطن، بعد لقائه الرئيس الأميركي، جو بايدن، في الثاني من الشهر الحالي، الغرب إلى الاستعداد لحرب استنزاف مديدة في هذا البلد. عكس هذا الاقتناع في الواقع توجّهاً غربياً للسعي لتحويل أوكرانيا إلى «أفغانستان جديدة» بالنسبة إلى روسيا، من أجل إضعافها وإلحاق هزيمة بها، كما جرى مع الاتحاد السوفياتي السابق. يتساءل بعض المراقبين «الخبثاء» عن «العقل الفذّ» الذي يقف خلف مثل هذه الاستراتيجية. ارتبط «الفخّ الأفغاني» باسم زبيغنيو بريجنسكي، أحد كبار الاستراتيجيين الأميركيين، ومستشار الأمن القومي للرئيس الأميركي آنذاك، جيمي كارتر. أراد بريجنسكي، البولوني الأصل والشديد العداء للسوفيات، الانتقام لهزيمة فيتنام عبر إلحاق أخرى شبيهة بها بموسكو في بلاد الأفغان. جميع حروب أميركا الكبرى في النصف الثاني من القرن العشرين، بمعزل عن نتائجها الفعلية، أدارها أصحاب خبرة لا يستهان بهم في الشؤون الاستراتيجية والدولية كهنري كيسنجر وروبرت ماكنمارا وجورج بوش الأب وجيمس بايكر، وآخرين. مَن هو «السيد» أو «السيدة» أوكرانيا، كما يلقَّب عادةً المكلّفون بالإشراف على ملفّ محدّد في الإدارات الأميركية، في فريق بايدن؟ هل هو جايك سوليفان، مستشار الأمن القومي، أو أنتوني بلينكن، وزير الخارجية، أو فيكتوريا نولاند، مساعدة وزير الخارجية للشؤون السياسية، أو غيرهم؟ أقلّ ما يمكن أن يقال بالنسبة إلى نتائج الحرب بعد أكثر من 100 يوم على اندلاعها، ولتداعياتها الاستراتيجية والاقتصادية الإجمالية، هو أنها مخالفة، ومتناقضة في العديد من المجالات، مع «التوقّعات» الأميركية والغربية.

لم تمنع المواجهة المحتدمة في أوكرانيا، فلاديمير بوتين، من التأكيد، في الخطاب الذي ألقاه أمام «منتدى بطرسبرغ الاقتصادي الدولي»، أن العالم الأحادي القطب قد انتهى، على رغم المحاولات المضنية لإحيائه، وأن الثقة في العملات العالمية تقوّضت كرمى للطموحات والأوهام الجيوسياسية التي عفا عليها الزمن. قد يكون الأنكى بالنسبة إلى بايدن وفريقه هو مشاطرة شخصيات أميركية وازنة لمِثل هذه الاستنتاجات، والإعلان عنها في مداخلات علنية ومقالات، ما يسهم في المزيد من إضعاف الإجماع الداخلي حول سياسات هذا الفريق. التداعيات الكارثية لحروب أفغانستان والعراق الكارثية على الموقع الدولي لواشنطن، لم تشفها من إدمانها على الحروب المباشرة، أو تلك التي تُخاض بالوكالة، ظنّاً منها أنها ستوقف انحدارها. وعلى الرغم من أن أصواتاً بارزة، محسوبة تاريخياً على المؤسسة الحاكمة، أو أخرى معارضة، كبرنت سكوكروفت، مستشار الأمن القومي لبوش الأب، أو بريجنسكي المذكور سالفاً، أو إيمانويل والرشتاين، حذّرت مراراً من مغبّة المضيّ في هذا النهج، فإن صنّاع القرار المتتالين لم يكترثوا لتحذيراتهم.

عن شخصيات شاركت بقوة في الحرب الباردة ضدّ الاتحاد السوفياتي، وأدّت إحداها، والمقصود هنري كيسنجر، دوراً حاسماً في استكمال تطويقه عبر هندسة صفقة استراتيجية مع الصين نجحت في استمالتها إلى واشنطن ضدّه. عارض كيسنجر، في كلمته أمام «منتدى دافوس» الأخير، الهدف الأميركي من الحرب، والذي أفصح عنه وزير الدفاع، لويد جونسون، والمتمثّل في إضعاف روسيا، معتبراً أن «المفاوضات يجب أن تبدأ خلال الشهرَين المقبلين قبل أن تؤدي الحرب إلى اضطرابات وتوترات لن يكون من السهولة بمكان التغلّب عليها. ومن الأفضل أن يكون الهدف هو العودة إلى الوضع السابق على اندلاعها»، أي الموافقة على تقديم أوكرانيا تنازلات لروسيا، عبر التخلّي عن أراض لها. وهو طالب القادة الغربيين بعدم «الانجراف في مزاج اللحظة» ، وبإجبار أوكرانيا على التفاوض.
محارب آخر من زمن الحرب الباردة، وهو غراهام فولر، أدلى بدلوه في النقاش الدائر حالياً. وفولر، لِمن لا يعرفه، عمل لمدّة 27 عاماً مع المخابرات المركزية ووزارة الخارجية الأميركية، وهو عُيّن من قِبل الوكالة نائباً لرئيس المجلس الوطني للاستخبارات في 1986. فولر متخصّص في الشؤون الشرق أوسطية والروسية، وخبير في الحركات الإسلامية، ويُحسب أنه من دعاة «انفتاح» واشنطن عليها، وكان لدراساته ومقالاته الكثيرة عن هذا الموضوع تأثير أكيد على اتخاذ قرار الحوار معها من قِبل إدارات أميركية متعاقبة. هو رأى، في مقال على مدوّنته بعنوان «بعض الأفكار الجادة عن ما بعد الحرب في أوكرانيا»، أنه «على العكس من البيانات الانتصارية لواشنطن، فإن روسيا هي مَن يفوز في الحرب، وأوكرانيا مَن يخسرها. أما بالنسبة إلى خسائر موسكو الطويلة الأمد، فهي قابلة للنقاش. العقوبات الأميركية ضدّها اتّضح أن مفاعيلها كارثية على أوروبا أولاً. الاقتصاد العالمي يتباطأ، والعديد من البلدان النامية تعاني من نقص في المواد الغذائية وقد تتعرّض لخطر مجاعات واسعة… ستندم أوروبا الغربية على اليوم الذي انقادت فيه بشكل أعمى خلف الولايات المتحدة للتورّط في حرب ليست أوكرانية – روسية، بل أميركية – روسية تُخاض بالوكالة حتى آخر أوكراني». وهو يشير إلى أن مصادرة الموجودات الروسية في البنوك الغربية تحفّز بقيّة العالم على إعادة النظر في الاعتماد الحصري على الدولار كعملة احتياطية: «لقد بات تنويع الأدوات الاقتصادية الدولية مطروحاً، وهو سيُضعف موقع واشنطن الاقتصادي المهيمن سابقاً، واستخدامها الأحادي للدولار كسلاح». ويختم فولر لافتاً إلى أن الشراكة المتعاظمة بين موسكو وبكين هي الرهان المستقبلي لروسيا، التي تمتلك «علماء لامعين، ووفرة في مصادر الطاقة والمعادن النادرة، والتي سيكون فيها لقدرات سيبيريا الزراعية أهمية فائقة في ظلّ الأزمة البيئية. الصين لديها الرساميل والأسواق والقوة الإنتاجية للمساهمة في بناء شراكة طبيعية معها في أوراسيا».

جوزف ستيغليتز، أحد كبار اقتصاديّي «البنك الدولي» سابقاً، والناقد المعروف للعولمة النيوليبرالية، لم يشارك في الحرب الباردة، غير أنه لا يكنّ ودّاً خاصاً لروسيا. هو رأى في مقال بعنوان «كيف يمكن أن تخسر الولايات المتحدة الحرب الباردة الجديدة»، أن من الأفضل للولايات المتحدة، التي تبدو جادّة في منافستها للصين على الريادة العالمية، أن تركّز على إعادة ترتيب بيتها الداخلي. هي لا تريد أن تُزاح عن موقعها المهيمن، لكن الأمر حتمي، لأن عدد سكان الصين 4 أضعاف عدد سكانها، ولأن اقتصاد الأولى ينمو بوتيرة أسرع بثلاث مرّات من سرعة نموّ اقتصادها. الأسوأ بنظر ستيغليتز، هو فقدان واشنطن صدقيّة نموذجها وجاذبيته أمام بقيّة شعوب الكوكب، بسبب حروبها العدوانية، واستشراء العنصرية والفوارق الاجتماعية في داخلها. وقد كشفت الأزمة المالية والاقتصادية في 2008 وجائحة «كورونا» هشاشة نموذجها، وكذلك انتخاب دونالد ترامب والانقسام السياسي الذي نجم عنه ومحاولة «الكابيتول» الانقلابية عند خسارته الانتخابات في 2021. هي ليست مؤهّلة لإعطاء الدروس وقيادة جبهات عالمية ضدّ الصين، «التي لم تعط دروساً، لكنها قدّمت للبلدان النامية بنى تحتية حيوية بالنسبة إليها».
قد لا تلقى هذه الآراء آذاناً صاغية بين صنّاع القرار في واشنطن، لكنها ستجد اهتماماً بين النخب وفي أوساط الرأي العام، وخاصة مع اشتداد التضخّم والأزمة الاقتصادية – الاجتماعية المرشّحة للتفاقم، والوثيقة الصلة بتداعيات الحرب في أوكرانيا. أصبحت أغلبية الأميركيين وبقيّة شعوب العالم تعرف أن المحافظين الجدد هم المسؤولون عن تسارع الانحدار الأميركي بسبب السياسات التي أوصوا بها، وهم سيهتمّون بلا شك بمعرفة «العقل المدبّر» للحرب على روسيا، والتي لم تنجم عنها حتى اللحظة سوى الخسائر.

Traitors and Patriots

June 10, 2022

Source

By Batiushka

The prolific Russian nationalist author of 91 books, Oleg Platonov (born 1950), relates in his work on the fall of the Soviet Union how in the 1980s, on the eve of the country’s collapse, Westerners, whom The Saker rightly calls ‘Euro-Atlanticists’, betrayed the USSR. These ‘Euro-Atlanticists’ were the ‘Communists’ who in the 1990s overnight became super Capitalists, bought shares for almost nothing in valuable, about-to-be privatised national companies and so became ‘oligarchs’. Their shameful acts, in fact thefts of national property by those with insider knowledge, created an underclass of homeless. They reveal how these money-launderers sold out their own country and people and souls, often then going to live in Tel Aviv, New York, London, Nice, Marbella, Nicosia etc.

The Traitors were opposed by the Patriots, some of whom worked in the national intelligence services, where some of the best brains met. One of these Patriots, the future President Putin, was then a lowly colonel in Dresden in East Germany, working in the Soviet intelligence services (not a head of it, like so many US Presidents, heads of the CIA). When the Berlin Wall fell in November 1989, his office sought answers from Moscow as to what to do. And there was no answer. ‘Moscow is silent’. I believe the story is related in many places, among them in ‘The Putin Interviews’ by Oliver Stone. It was that paralysis and silence of the Centre in Moscow that was among the most decisive events in the future President’s life. He realised that Moscow was betraying the Soviet Union, that it had been taken over by the Traitors, the ‘Nomenklatura’. They believed in nothing, except in their own disgraceful gain. They were anti-Patriots.

Since coming to power in 2000, V. V. Putin has very slowly and very cautiously, but incrementally, been remedying the situation. It is his life’s work – to reverse treachery. In 19th century Russian history people like him were known as ‘Slavophiles’ and they were opposed by ‘Westerners’. These are very vague and rather crude terms, for there are many types of Slavophiles, from primitive and bigoted nationalists to genuine Patriots, who are well-educated realists and seek only the well-being of their people. Similarly, the term ‘Westerners’ can describe outright Traitors and murderers, like Litvinenko and Skripal, but also those who realise that if Russia is to defend itself against the West, it must fight obscurantism and make use of, and then improve on, Western technology. President Putin would probably not identify with either of these historical tags, but rather perhaps with aspects of both of them.

History

The Slavophile and Westerner tendencies go back far beyond the invention of the terms in the 19th century. Western influence, but not domination, is already there in the late 15th century, in the Italian-built Moscow Kremlin and in the Italian manufacture of cannon under Ivan III, the Great (died 1505). This was positive. However, during the reign of Ivan IV (died 1584), called ‘the Threatening’ in Russian, which is deliberately mistranslated into English as ‘The Terrible’, Prince Andrei Kurbsky became the first Russian political émigré. Today we would call him an oligarch, or a Traitor, for in his correspondence he clearly betrays his Homeland, fleeing to the enemy in Lithuania. He was the first of the Traitors, a stereotypical ‘Westerner’.

In the second half of the 17th century the protest against State-imposed ritual religious changes led to the nationalistic Old Ritualist reaction, popular among merchants and ‘boyars’, in the 19th century called ‘aristocrats’, today called ‘oligarchs’. They were ‘ultra-Slavophiles’, some would say obscurantist nationalists. Then, conversely, came the Westerner Tsar Peter I, called ‘the Great’ (died 1725) who imposed by force Western technology and a Western way of life wholesale, even cutting off beards. This 18th century later saw the reign of the enserfer Catherine II, called ‘the Great’ (died 1796), who in reality was the German Princess Sophie von Anhalt-Zerbst-Dornburg, who did not stop persecuting Russian traditions. Westerners and Slavophiles, Traitors and Patriots.

In the 19th and 20th centuries three Romanov Tsars were assassinated by Westerners. The first of these was Paul I in 1801, with close British support because Paul wanted to free India from the yoke of British imperialism. In 1825 a revolt of Westerner aristocrats led to the Decembrist plot straight after the mysterious disappearance of Tsar Alexander I, Paul I’s son. In 1881 Alexander II, the Liberator from the enserfment of the people by the aristocrats, was assassinated by a Westerner terrorist. In 1918 his grandson, Nicholas II, hated by the aristocrats for providing virtually free education and health care and giving away land to the people, was also assassinated, again with close Western support. After the British-orchestrated coup d’etat of 1917 (absurdly called a ‘Revolution’), Westerner upper and middle classes had taken over over, but they were ousted a few months later by Westerner Bolsheviks. The vast majority of these were not Russian, and indeed their idol Karl Marx was not Russian either. Thus, they felt free to genocide the Slav population of the USSR.

Make Russia Great Again

Since the failure of the 1917-imposed Communist experiment of the USSR after three generations, the West has finally had to face a new reality. This was one which the Russophobic Brzezinski had feared so much that in the 1990s he urged the destruction and dismemberment of Russia and her Church. As Samuel Huntingdon put it so well: ‘As the Russians stopped behaving like Marxists and began behaving like Russians, the gap between Russia and the West broadened. The conflict between liberal democracy and Marxist-Leninism was between ideologies which, despite their major differences, were both modern and secular…A Western democrat could carry on a debate with a Soviet Marxist. It would be impossible for him to do that with a Russian Orthodox nationalist’ (1). In other words, the Brzezinskis of this world feared that the Patriots would return to power after rejecting Western secular ideologies, as they mostly did temporarily between 1941 and 1945 in the ‘Great Patriotic War’.

This is also what happened in 2000, when V. V. Putin came to power. Since then he has been very patient, putting up with all sorts of insults and humiliations from the Western world, from one US President after another. Many of the opposite extreme criticised him in those years, those whom The Saker rightly calls ‘sixth columnists’. Similarly, many also criticised Dmitry Medvedev as a ‘Westerner’. Perhaps he was a Westerner then, but now the chips are down and the Collective West has shown its Nazi hand, there is no mistaking whom he supports. And maybe he never was a Westerner anyway. Maybe he was emollient at the time, simply because Russia was so weak and he had to court popularity in the West. We cannot say, but whatever his past, his present is clear.

Now that Russia is strong, President Putin, with his Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and all the Russia that counts behind him, is in no mood for weakling Westerners and their compromises. The Special Operation is all or nothing, and the West is losing fast. All has been carefully prepared. For over twenty years the Russian Federation has been gathering allies in a coalition all over the world, wisely using its international diplomatic skills. There will never be a repeat of Yeltsin’s betrayal of Serbia again. There will never be a repeat of the betrayal of Libya again. Technologically and economically, Russia has become independent. And militarily Russia has become stronger than the combined NATO West. The Patriots are in power and the cack-handed West and its sanctions are making Russia great again.

The Great Cleansing

The Great Cleansing has been under way since 24 February 2022. Many internal traitors in Russia soon fled – one of the first was the notorious economist and privatiser Anatoly Chubais. Millions of other traitors also soon fled from the Ukraine westwards, much to Russian satisfaction. Russia will not welcome so many of them back. Only those who left from mistaken or brainwashed panic, or because they did not want to be enlisted in the suicidal Kiev Army, will return. Let the others stay in Poland and elsewhere, living off Western ideological stupidity and humanist naivety. Other internal traitors who infiltrated positions of responsibility over the last 30 years have also been removed in Russia, as they have been found out. We know some of their names. There are still a few left to clear out. The Great Cleansing is here. Dewesternisation is being delivered.

The Special Operation has revealed who is who. The Traitors have been revealed. As also the Patriots. Those who only in fair weather supported have disappeared. Those who in foul weather still support have been revealed. The multilateral world, led by Russia, China, India and Iran, is taking shape; the unilateral world is over, as Russian sanctions bite. Forget the US vassal and client-state called ‘Ukraine’ – it is over; instead, there will be a smallish Russian Protectorate centred around Kiev. Never again will traitors in Kiev threaten Russians with NATO, nuclear weapons, bioweapons or ban the Russian language and culture, forbidding ‘War and Peace’, but allowing ‘Mein Kampf’. Never again will Kiev promote the Western Nazi ideology of ‘Cancel Russia’. It is over. This is the Great Cleansing.

But let it be said that, just as in Russia, so in the West too there are Traitors and Patriots, the elite and those among the people who have retained some integrity. They have always been there, suppressed and repressed, but still alive. The English historian Robert Bartlett put it very well in his study of Western Europe in the period from 950 to 1350, devoting a whole chapter to ‘The Europeanisation of Europe’. This relates how the West was ‘Westernised’ from the 11th century on (2). In other words, if even after all this time the underclass of Patriots, people of integrity, were to come to power in Europe as a result of the present catastrophic situation there, as decided by the elite, and replace the treacherous Establishment traitors, then the West too could begin a process of Dewesternisation. This would be the even Greater Cleansing.

9 June 2022

Notes:

1. The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order, Chapter 6, Torn Countries, Samuel Phillips Huntingdon, 1997

2. The Making of Europe, Conquest, Colonisation and Cultural Change 950-1350, Chapter 11, Robert Bartlett, 1993

The Real ‘Reset:’ Russia Outlines the Inevitability of a Nuclear War they Will Win (vital)

 April 17, 2022

By  VT Editors

NATO nuke exploding over Yemen 2015

Russia says the US engineered World War II and the rise of Hitler to destroy Russia….they say much more but they are promising that before one NATO solider crosses the Russian border the temperature in Washington, London, Los Angeles and Berlin will readh 10,000 “in the shade.”  

It doesn’t matter if it is Celsius or Fahrenheit when you are vaporized.   

Sourced from Russian Government Backed Media

The head of Eurodiplomacy, Josep Borrell, during his visit to Kyiv wished that the conflict would be resolved by military means, not by diplomacy. “This war must be won on the battlefield,” Borrell tweeted. 

Neutrons from NATO nuke in Yemen hitting camera LCD (According to IAEA)

Such a statement was made for the first time in the history of the European Union.

“NATO is developing plans for a full-scale deployment of armed forces on its eastern borders in connection with the growing military activity of Russia,” Stoltenberg said. The Secretary General of the alliance emphasized that about 40,000 military personnel are already deployed on the eastern flank, noting that their number is about ten times higher than the number three months ago and will continue to grow.

The Estonian Defense Minister acknowledged that economic sanctions against Russia have not yet had an effect. Read: “peaceful options for forcing the Russian Federation into obedience have been exhausted, only military ones remain.”

Actions follow words. The Russian cruiser Moskva is sinking, and evil tongues confidently articulate that the missile that hit it was not entirely Ukrainian, and the launch operators had nothing to do with Nenka. In the battles for the Donbass in the village of Borovaya near Izyum, Polish military personnel who fought on the side of Ukraine were eliminated. PMC? Well, let’s call them PMCs, since diplomats and politicians need it that way.

Popasnaya, therefore, is being stormed by the Wagner PMC, “which has nothing to do with the RF Armed Forces”, and the Polish PMC, which “has nothing to do with the NATO bloc,” is operating on the Izyum Highway. It does not change the circumstances of what happened.

The war has its own logic, and without fail with the supply of weapons more complex than a club and an ax. These “devices” are followed by instructors in their use. In addition, during the active phase, there is simply no time to train some natives, so full-fledged crews of the country of manufacture, covered by colleagues from the same country, go into battle.

And so, imperceptibly, the native army is first generously diluted, and then, as it is exhausted, it is completely replaced by a foreign one.

This process in Ukraine has already begun and there is not a single reason to think that it will suddenly stop “at the most interesting place.” There is another mint gingerbread hanging in front of the very nose of the command of the joint headquarters of the “empire of good”.

In accordance with it, the involvement of NATO in the conflict in Ukraine is not only possible, but even necessary! The unwillingness to bomb the Ukrainian people into the Stone Age, clearly and unambiguously demonstrated by the leadership of the Russian Federation, the successful tactics of the Ukrov troops hiding in residential areas, simply shout at “the entire civilized world” – “This is an idea!”

This means that if non-peaceful troops appear in the immediate vicinity of the civilian population, we place them in a “magic house” on which no one will throw vigorous loaves. This is very good news and a very serious trump card for planning NATO operations on the territory of the ex-USSR, and we are talking not only about Ukraine, but also about Belarus and Kaliningrad.

In addition to military logic, there is also geopolitical. It is the main, initiating one, thanks to which the Donbass first flared up, and now the whole of Ukraine.  The explanation that the population of the collective West is getting worse and worse solely because the Russians and Ukrainians are shooting at each other can be sold for an extremely short time. And it’s already coming to an end.

Further – only hardcore! The only justification for a further inevitable decline in the standard of living can be a direct military conflict with Russia.

Yes, the risk of increased radiation increases. But you have to choose between a civil war on your own territory and a conflict with an external enemy on someone else’s.

What do you think, which of these two evils will the “Western partners” choose? “Look for money,” the Americans adapted the French proverb Cherchez la femme to their own mentality. Furious Yankees themselves warn that you should not strain and try to connect their words with facts, facts – with opinions, actions – with their public justification. The motive of any actions and statements is always the same, reinforced concrete, corresponding to the question: “And what will I get from that?”

All American geopolitics fits perfectly into this formula and fits perfectly with everything that happens around the United States or at their suggestion. In particular, everything that concerns Russia, Russian politics and the Eastern vector in general is also the answer to this vulgar question, starting with the statements of the ideologist “Papa” Brzezinski and ending with these helpless dead ends of Obama.

The task solved by Big Brother is always simple, like a compass needle: “Give what you have, and you will owe the rest!” If the “client” obeys, Big Brother is pleased and is in a good mood, only occasionally kicking the vassal purely symbolically, so as not to forget his place. If a “rebellion on the ship” suddenly begins, the vassal can be publicly punished, scrupulously fixing all the stages of the execution and demonstrating to other vassals, so that it would be disrespectful.

Terrible “and on the sopatka?” after 1991, it solved problem No. 1 perfectly, regularly freeing the pockets of vassals from excess banknotes. Everything was going well until Russia kicked up in the person of Vladimir Putin, and very timidly, trying in 1999 to appease the Caucasian abreks and kunaks of Big Brother in their underbelly, who were so naughty that they jeopardized even the tribute generously shipped to the bins of the Empire of Good directly from the bins of 1/6 of the land.

And after all Big Brother nothing threatened. Nothing at all. Neither to him personally, nor to his well-established colonial business. In those “holy” times, Russia diligently left all foreign exchange earnings for products sold abroad in the West, receiving Big Brother’s IOUs in return, secured exclusively by his reinforced concrete “I’ll be a bastard, I’ll pay!”

Fuel and raw materials, being only nominally Russian, regularly implemented the Great American Dream of a good life at someone else’s expense. To say that the foreign policy of the Russian Federation was modest is to say nothing. There was no foreign policy as such.

In the 90s, there is either nothing to remember, or you don’t want to, except for the U-turn over the Atlantic named after Primakov. But Big Brother decided to put the squeeze on… A fucking booster… And the ruling elite of Russia, in front of which, as if alive, stood vivid examples of the careers of Milosevic and Hussein, were seriously frightened, and when frightened, they realized that they were pressed against the wall.

“Although Russia is great, there is nowhere to retreat,” behind – the deposits … Big Brother did not leave her a way out. Only in a noose, together with Hussein, or in The Hague – together with Milosevic.

Just like in “The White Sun of the Desert”: “Do you want to die right away or do you prefer to suffer?” Russia decided to suffer… The first and second bells, when the “Muscovites” enthusiastically kicked the vassals in the Caucasus, Big Brother relaxedly missed, deciding that this did not concern him. But in vain. Because to the standard shout “what about the sopatka?” followed by an unexpected “what if you?”. This is discouraging. The business plan for “honest” taking supplies from the “barbarians” does not fit in any way with your own risk of suddenly finding yourself in a world where pockets are not needed at all.

Therefore, a dead end, a headache. Therefore, tantrums, starting with “you must remember that you are the losing side”, ending with the mournful “how much you have – you need to share …” And Ukraine has nothing to do with it. Neither Ukraine, nor Crimea, nor doping, nor offshore revelations, nor all the rights of all homosexuals combined.

Only an ardent desire to take away and divide, executed worse and worse, although you want more and more. Another situational, purely philological impasse has set in, connected with the non-normative Russian word that means “no”, although it is spelled and pronounced quite differently.

The Ukrainian war or the Russian military operation is rapidly developing into a global final battle, at the end of the centuries-old historical, bloody confrontation between East and West, which has been going on since the time of the Great Church Schism.

In fact, from the second half of the 11th century, which marked the beginning of the division of Europeans into varieties and endowing them with the right to exist and doomed to contempt.

Yes Yes exactly! And do not underestimate the significance of what is happening. It is we who live today who will have to decide the outcome of a thousand-year-old conflict aimed by the West at the total destruction of the dissenting part of humanity.

This is how the West treated all wars with the “Russian barbarians”. A whole series of world clashes should have completed this task long ago, but somehow it didn’t work out. Each time, the peoples of Russia turned out to be incredibly tenacious.

Now, more than ever, they are united and determined, more than ever, resolutely. Ukraine is just a trigger. Only an inanimate, deadly instrument, like the Browning in the hand of Gavrila Princip, who destroyed, in his time, four empires and ten million people.

The tectonic plates of world politics that have rested against each other have reached the maximum unresolved tension over the centuries and will inevitably bring down the existing order in one direction or the other. The words of the “diplomat” of the European Union, Borel, about the need for a military victory over Russia draw a thick line under the hopes of the “doves of peace” on both sides.

Then everything will be “in an adult way.” It’s time to recognize this and act accordingly.

PS A video of a large American military field camp near the Ukrainian border with about 3,000 people appeared on the network As you can see in the footage, among the military equipment are dozens of different infantry fighting vehicles, tanks, MLRS, operational supply vehicles of foreign production. The territory is behind a fence and under round-the-clock protection. The exact location of the base has not yet been determined.

Читать далее: https://rusonline.org/world/voyna-neizbezhna-specoperaciya-na-ukraine-lish-nachalo

Events Like These Only Happen Once Every Century (Sergey Glazyev)

April 03, 2022

Translated by Leo.

Bolds and italics used for emphasise.

“Events like these only happen once every century”: Sergei Glazyev on the breaking of an epoch and the change of ways.

Is it possible to stabilize the ruble in three days? And why are the Ukrainian ‘zombies’ not giving up?

“After failing to weaken the People’s Republic of China head-on through a trade war, the Americans shifted the main blow to Russia, which they see as a weak link in world geopolitics and economics. The Anglo-Saxons are striving to realize their age-old Russophobic ideas of destroying our country, and at the same time weakening China, because the strategic alliance of the Russian Federation and China is too tough for the United States. They have neither the economic nor military power to destroy us together, and not separately,” says Sergey Glazyev, Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, former adviser to the President of the Russian Federation. About what opportunities are now opening up for the Russian economy, whether the Central Bank panders to the enemy and whether a new world currency will replace the dollar, Glazyev spoke in an interview with BUSINESS Online.

The new world economic order is socialist in ideology”

– Sergey Yuryevich, commenting on today’s tragic events, you wrote in your Telegram channel that we should have read your book about the “last world war”, written about 6 years ago. How did you manage to predict everything so accurately?

– The fact is that there are long-term patterns of economic development, the analysis and understanding of which makes it possible to predict the events that are taking place at the present time. We are now experiencing a simultaneous change in the technological and world economic structures, while the technological basis of the economy is changing, there is a transition to fundamentally new technologies, and the management system is also changing. Events like this happen about once a century. However, technological structures change about once every 50 years, and their change is usually accompanied by a technological revolution, depression and an arms race. And world economic structures change once every 100 years, and their change is accompanied by world wars and social revolutions. This is due to the fact that the ruling elite of the countries of the core of the old world economic order impedes changes, does not take into account the emergence of more effective management systems, tries to block the development of new world leaders using them, and tries to maintain its hegemony and its monopoly position by any means, including military and revolutionary ones.

Say, 100 years ago, the British Empire was trying to maintain its hegemony in the world. When it was already losing economically to the combined resources of the Russian Empire and Germany, the First World War, provoked by British intelligence, was unleashed, during which all three European empires self-liquidated. I am talking about the collapse of tsarist Russia, the German and Austro-Hungarian empires, but here we can even put a fourth – the Ottoman Port. As for Britain, for some time it retained global dominance and even became the largest empire on the planet. But due to the inexorable laws of socio-economic development, the colonial world economic structure, based in fact on slave labor, could no longer ensure economic growth. The two fundamentally new political models that emerged – the Soviet and the American ones – demonstrated a much greater efficiency of production, since they were already organized on other principles: not on private family capitalism, but on the strength of large transnational corporations with centralized structures for regulating the economy and with limitless monetary emission of credit through fiat money (paper or electronic means – ed. note). They enabled the mass production of products much more efficiently than the administrative systems of the colonial empires of the XIX century.

The emergence of social states in the USSR and the USA with centralized control systems made it possible for a sharp jump in their economic development. In Europe, the corporate governance system was formed, unfortunately, according to the Nazi model in Germany, and also not without the help of British intelligence. Hitler, relying on the support of the British intelligence services and American capital, quite quickly deployed a centralized corporate management system in Germany, which allowed the Third Reich to very quickly capture the whole of Europe. With God’s help, we defeated this German (more precisely, European – taking into account today’s realities) fascism. After that, two models remained in the world, which I attribute to the imperial world economic structure: Soviet and Western (with the center in the USA). After the collapse of the Soviet Union, which could not withstand global competition due to the fact that the directive system of government was not flexible enough to meet the needs of technological progress, the United States seized global dominance for a while.

– But now this period of “American unipolar loneliness” is already ending, and, probably, not only thanks to Russia, but primarily to China and the Asian regions as such. Is it not?

– Indeed, the hierarchical vertical structures characteristic of the imperial world economy turned out to be too rigid to ensure continuous innovation processes and lost their comparative effectiveness in ensuring the growth of the world economy. On its periphery, a new world economic order has been formed, which is based on flexible management models, a network organization of production, where the state works as an integrator, uniting the interests of various social groups around achieving one goal – raising the public welfare. The most impressive example of such an integral world economic structure today is China, which for more than 30 years has outpaced the growth rate of the American economy by three times. At the moment, China is already surpassing the United States in terms of output, exports of high-tech goods, and growth rates.

Another example of a model of a new world economic order, which we called integral (due to the fact that the state in it unites all social groups of different interests), is India. It has a different political system, but it also has the primacy of public interests over private ones, and the state seeks to maximize growth rates in order to fight poverty. In this sense, the new world economic order is socialist in ideology. At the same time, it uses market mechanisms of competition, which makes it possible to provide the highest concentration of resources for making a technological revolution with goals to ensure economic leaps based on a new advanced technological order. If we look at growth rates after 1995, we see that the Chinese economy has grown 10 times, while the US economy has grown by only 15 percent. Thus, it is already obvious to everyone that at present the pace of world economic development is shifting to Asia: China, India and the countries of Southeast Asia already produce more products than the US and the EU. If we add to them Japan or Korea, in which the management system is similar in its principles to the integration of society around the goal of increasing public welfare, then we can say that today this new world economic structure already dominates the world, and the center of reproduction of the world economy has moved to Southeast Asia. Of course, the American ruling elite cannot agree with this.

– To come to terms with it, I would say…

– Yes. They, like the British Empire once, seek to maintain their hegemony in the world. The events taking place today are a manifestation of how the US financial and powerful oligarchic elite are trying to maintain world domination. It can be said that for the past 15 years it has been waging a world hybrid war, seeking to chaoticize countries beyond its control and restrain the development of the People’s Republic of China. But due to the already archaic system of governance, they cannot do this. The financial crisis of 2008 was such a transitional moment when the life cycle of the outgoing technological order actually ended and the process of massive redistribution of capital into a new technological order began, the core of which is a complex of nanobioengineering and information communication technologies. All countries began to pump up the economy with money. The simplest thing a modern government can do is to give all businesses access to cheap long-term money so they can adopt new technologies. But, if in America and Europe such funds went mainly into financial bubbles and covered the budget deficit, then in China this colossal money emission was completely directed to the growth of production and the development of new technologies. There were no financial bubbles, while the ultra-high monetization of the Chinese economy did not result in inflation, the growth of the money supply was accompanied by an increase in the production of goods, the introduction of new advanced technologies and an increase in public welfare.

Today, economic competition has already led to the fact that the United States has lost its leadership. If you remember, Donald Trump tried to contain the development of China through a trade war, but nothing came out of it.

“The Americans have opened a biological front of war by launching the coronavirus in China

– Why? Did Trump, accustomed to taking risks and going all-in, lack the determination?

– And even Trump couldn’t get it out, because China has a more efficient management system that allows you to concentrate the available production resources to the fullest. At the same time, effective money management keeps money emission in the contour of expanded reproduction of the real sector of the economy, focusing on financing investments in development. China has the highest savings rate of any country, with about 45 percent of GDP invested, compared with 20 percent in the United States or Russia. This, in fact, ensures the ultra-high growth rates of the Chinese economy.

In short, the US was doomed to lose this trade war because China could produce more efficiently and finance development cheaper. The entire banking system in China is state-owned, it works as a single development institution, directing cash flows to expand production and master new technologies. In the United States, the emission of money goes to finance the budget deficit and is redistributed into financial bubbles. As a result, the efficiency of the US financial and economic system is 20 percent – there only every fifth dollar reaches the real sector, and in China almost 90 percent (that is, almost all the yuan that is created by the Central Bank of the PRC) feeds the contours of the expansion of production and ensures ultra-high economic growth.

Trump’s attempts to limit China’s development through trade war methods have failed. At the same time, they boomeranged at the United States itself. Then the Americans opened a biological war front by launching the coronavirus in China, hoping that the Chinese leadership would not cope with this epidemic and chaos would arise in China. However, the epidemic has demonstrated the low efficiency of healthcare and has created chaos in the United States itself. The Chinese system of government has shown much greater efficiency here as well. In the Celestial Empire, the mortality rate is significantly lower, and the pandemic was dealt with much faster there. Already in 2020, they even reached economic growth of 2 percent, while in the United States there was a decline of 10 percent of GDP (analysts noted the largest drop since the Second World War – ed. note). Now the Chinese have restored the growth rate of about 7 percent per year, and there is no doubt that the PRC will continue to develop confidently, expanding the production of a new technological order.

In parallel with the trade war against China, American intelligence services were preparing a war against Russia, since the Anglo-Saxon geopolitical tradition considers our country the main obstacle to establishing world domination of the US and British power and financial elite. It must be said that the war against the Russian Federation unfolded immediately after the annexation of Crimea and after the American special services organized a coup d’état in Ukraine. It can be said that they tricked Russia into agreeing to the American occupation of Ukraine, considering it as a temporary phenomenon. However, the Americans took root on ‘Ukrainian Independence’, created not only strongholds, growing Nazis under their wing, but also trained the Nazi armed forces, gave the Nazis the opportunity to receive a military education, trained them in their academies, ‘sewed together’ all the Armed Forces of Ukraine with them. And for 8 years they have been preparing the Armed Forces of Ukraine for the fight against the only enemy – Russia. While the mass media, which in Ukraine are also completely controlled by the Americans, formed the image of the enemy in the public mind.

In addition, the United States used the monetary and financial front of the hybrid war against the Russian Federation. Already in 2014, they introduced the first financial sanctions and knocked out a significant part of Western loans from the Russian economy. Now we are witnessing the next phase, when they have actually disconnected Russia from the world monetary and financial system, which they dominate. However, I predicted all this 10 years ago, based on the theory of changing world economic structures and the specific logic of the US ruling elite, focused on world domination. Anglo-Saxon geopolitics is traditionally oriented against the Russian Empire and its successors, the USSR and the Russian Federation, because, since the days of the British Empire, Russia has been seen as the main opponent of the Anglo-Saxons. All the so-called geopolitical science that was being written in London came down, in fact, to a set of recommendations on how to destroy Russia as the dominant force in Eurasia. I mean all sorts of speculative constructions like “countries of the sea against countries of the land” and so on.

– How did Russia get in the way of the ‘sea countries’ that much? After all, geographically with the UK, we have never bordered.

– In this regard, a formula was invented: whoever controls Eurasia controls the whole world. Actually, applied developments have already gone further. Zbigniew Brzezinski’s theorem is known that in order to defeat Russia as a superpower, Ukraine must be torn off from it. All this political dogma, which, it would seem, has long gone down in history, is nevertheless reproduced today in the thinking of the American political elite. I must say that there are still courses in geopolitics of the XIX century at Harvard and Yale University, sharpening the brains of future American politicians against Russia. So they, in fact, jumped on this old and time-tested Russophobic stream, which has always been characteristic of Anglo-Saxon geopolitics. And, considering Russia as the main opponent of their dominance in the world, in accordance with the proposal of Brzezinski, they used Ukraine as an outpost, more precisely, as a tool to undermine Russia, weaken it and, in the long run, destroy it as a sovereign state.

So, what is happening today was easily predicted based on a combination of long-term patterns of economic development, which actually doomed the world to a hybrid war, and the traditional Russophobia of the Anglo-Saxon political elite. After the weakening of the PRC did not work out through a trade war, the Americans transferred the main blow of their military and political power to Russia, which they consider to be a weak link in world geopolitics and economics. In addition, the Anglo-Saxons seek to establish dominance over Russia in order to realize their age-old Russophobic ideas of destroying our country, and at the same time weakening China, because the strategic alliance of the Russian Federation and China is too tough for the United States. They have neither the economic nor the military power to destroy us together, neither separately, which is why the United States initially sought to quarrel us with China. That didn’t work for them. But they, using our, I would say, placidity, seized control over Ukraine, and today they are using our fraternal republic as a weapon of war to destroy Russia, and then to seize control of our resources in order, I repeat, to strengthen their position and weaken China’s position. In general, this is all obvious, like two plus two equals four.

“The Americans will not be able to win, just as the British did not succeed in their time

– Probably, this is obvious, but not for everyone. Among the Russian elite there are many opponents of an alliance with China. At least, before the special operation in Ukraine, it seemed to these people that American and Western culture is more understandable and closer to us than hieroglyphic Chinese wisdom, and that we will always find a common language with our “Western partners”.

– You know, back in 2015 I wrote the book “The Last World War. The USA is Starting and Losing”, which you mentioned at the beginning of the conversation – everything was thought out and justified there. The United States embarked on a worldwide hybrid war – started with the Orange Revolutions to disrupt regions of the world it did not control – in order to strengthen its position and weaken the position of geopolitical rivals. After the famous Munich speech of President Putin (February 2007 – ed. Note), they realized that they had lost control over Yeltsin’s Russia, and this seriously worried them. In 2008, the financial crisis broke out and it became clear that the transition to a new technological order was beginning, and the old world economic order and the previous management system no longer ensured sustainable economic development. China was now leading the way. Well, then afterwards the logic of deploying of a world war happens, only not in the forms that existed 100 years ago, but on three conditional fronts – monetary-financial (where the United States still dominates the world), trade-economic (where they have already lost superiority to China) and information-cognitive (where the Americans also have technologies that are superior to ours). They use all three of these fronts in an attempt to keep the initiative and maintain the hegemony of their corporations.

Well and finally, the fourth front is the biological one, which opened with the advent of the coronavirus from the US-Chinese laboratory in Wuhan. Today we see that a whole network of biological laboratories existed in Ukraine. So the United States has long been preparing to open the biological front of the world war.

The fifth, and most obvious, front is, in fact, the front of combat fighting – as the last tool for forcing the states that they control into unquestioning obedience. Today, the situation on this front is also escalating. That is, active operations are underway on all five fronts of the world hybrid war, and the result can be predicted. The Americans will not be able to win, just as the British did not succeed in their time. Although Britain formally won World War II, they lost politically and economically. The British lost their entire empire, losing more than 90 percent of the territory and 95 percent of the population. Two years after World War II, where they were the winners, their empire collapsed like a house of cards, because the other two winners – the USSR and the USA – did not need this empire and viewed it as an anachronism. Also, the world will not need American transnational corporations, the American dollar, American monetary and financial technologies and financial pyramids. All this will be a thing of the past in the near future. Southeast Asia will become the obvious leader in world economic development, and a new world economic order will be formed before our very eyes.

– To paraphrase [Erich] Remarque, we can say that changes have finally come on the western front. But what signs do you see of this powerful global system soon becoming a thing of the past?

– After the Americans seized first the Venezuelan foreign exchange reserves and handed them over to the opposition, then the Afghan foreign exchange reserves, before that the Iranian ones, and now the Russian ones, it became completely clear that the dollar ceased to be the world currency. Following the Americans, the Europeans also committed this stupidity – the euro and the pound ceased to be world currencies. Therefore, the old monetary and financial system is living its last days. After American dollars that no one needs are sent back to America from Asian countries, the collapse of the world monetary and financial system based on dollars and euros is inevitable. Leading countries are switching to national currencies, and the euro and the dollar are ceasing to be foreign exchange reserves.

– How do you see the world after the disappearance of the dollar monopoly?

– We are currently working on a project for an international treaty on the introduction of a new world settlement currency pegged to the national currencies of the participating countries and to exchange commodities that determine real values. We won’t need American and European banks. A new payment system based on modern digital technologies with blockchain is developing in the world, where banks lose their importance. Classical capitalism based on private banks is fading away. International law is being restored. All key international relations, including the issuance of world currency circulation, begin to form on the basis of agreements. At the same time, the significance of national sovereignty is being restored, because sovereign countries are coming to an agreement. The basis of global economic cooperation is joint investment in order to improve the well-being of peoples. Trade liberalization ceases to be some kind of priority, national priorities are respected, each state builds such a system for protecting the internal market and its economic space that it considers necessary. That is, the era of liberal globalization is over. Before our eyes, a new world economic structure is being formed – an integral one, in which some states and private banks lose their private monopoly on the issue of money, on the use of military force, and so on.

“The third scenario is catastrophic. Destruction of mankind

– Why did you call your book “The Last World War”? What feeds your hope that this global war is really the last one?

– I called this world war the last one, because we see that there are several scenarios of movement out of today’s crisis. The first scenario, which I have already talked about, is calm and prosperous. It consists in overcoming the US monopoly. In order to do this in the financial sector, you need to abandon the dollar. In order to overcome the monopoly in the information and cognitive sphere, it is necessary to isolate our information space from the American one and switch to our own information technologies. Creating their own contours of the reproduction of the economy, but without the US dollar and the euro and relying on their information technologies for managing money, the countries of the new world economic order ensure high rates of economic development, while the Western world is collapsing. There they have a situation of collapse of financial pyramids, disorganization and a growing economic crisis, aggravated by growing inflation due to the uncontrolled issue of money over the past 12 years.

The second scenario of a possible development of events is similar to the one that Hitler wanted to realize during the period of the change of previous world economic structures. This is an attempt to create a world government with a superhuman ideology. If Hitler conceived the German nation as superhumans, then the current ideologists of world domination impose on humanity the transition to a post-humanoid state. In contrast to the post-humanism of the West, the core countries of the new world economic order are characterized by a socialist ideology, albeit with respect for private interests, protection of private property and the use of market mechanisms. In China, India, Japan, and Korea, socialist ideology dominates – or rather, a mixture of socialist ideology, national interests, and market competition. It is this mixture that forms a fundamentally new power-political elite, focused on economic development and the growth of the well-being of nations.

It is different for Western politicians, intellectuals and businessmen. What we see today is an attempt to form a certain image of a new world order with a world government at the head, where people are driven into an electronic concentration camp. You can see by the example of restrictions during the pandemic how it happened: all people are given tags, access to public goods is regulated through QR codes, everyone is forced to walk in formation. By the way, in the scenario of the Rockefeller Foundation back in 2009, the pandemic and, in fact, everything that happened in connection with it, was amazingly sorted into pieces – they actually predicted the future. This scenario was called Lock Step, that is, “Walk in formation”, and the Western world followed it. Sacrificing their own democratic values, they try to force people to obey commands. International organizations, including the World Health Organization, are used as a kind of stronghold for assembling a world government that would be subordinate to private capital.

But, I must say, Donald Trump greatly interfered with these plans, because he stopped the signing of agreements on Transatlantic and Trans-Pacific partnerships, where all countries participating in the agreements sacrificed national sovereignty in all disputes with big business. And you need to understand that today any transnational corporation can act as a foreign investor, including in the United States. According to these agreements, if there is foreign capital in the business, then in a dispute with the national government, some kind of international arbitration court is formed, it is not clear how and by whom it was drawn up. And these unelected judges, appointed, in fact, by big international business, these disputes are resolved. In fact, it was about the fact that the state was losing all sovereignty in regulating relations with big business. However, Trump stopped the agreement – the United States never signed it. Thus, the process of forming a world government was stopped. This is the second alternative, and it is now in crisis due to the collapse of the idea of globalization and the gradual abandonment of ‘pandemic’ restrictions.

It must be understood that the option of a world government is incompatible with sovereign Russia, with our independence and role in the world. Within the framework of the globalist scenario, the Russian Federation is viewed as a territory that is intended for exploitation by Western transnational corporations. The “indigenous population” must serve their interests. Under such a scenario, Russia disappears as an independent entity, just like China, by the way. The Western world government may incorporate some of our oligarchs into its version of the future, but only in second and third-rate roles.

The third scenario is catastrophic. The destruction of humanity…

– That same apocalypse which everybody talks about?

– Well, not everyone… But everyone, of course, is afraid. By the way, about the American biological laboratories that are engaged in the synthesis of dangerous viruses, it was mentioned in my other book, which was published a little later: “Plague of the XXI century: how to avoid disaster and overcome the crisis?”

I remember back in 1996, when I had to work in the UN Security Council, I proposed to develop the concept of national biological security. Because even then, almost 30 years ago, genetics was a sufficiently developed science to synthesize viruses directed against people of a certain race or a certain gender, a certain age. This has been possible for a long time. It is possible to make a virus that will only work against whites, or vice versa, only against blacks, only against men, or only against women. Now the Americans are going further – you see that, data which agrees with our Ministry of Defense, they announced the day before, that American biological laboratories were developing viruses targeted against the Slavs. Apparently, it is possible today – to make a virus against some ethnic group that has its own genetic code.

What is happening in Ukraine today is an echo of the agony of the US power elite, which cannot come to terms with the fact that they will no longer be a world leader. This becomes clear to everyone – at least to those who are not connected with the Americans by their own interests and are not subject to their cognitive influence.

I’ll give you an example. When the US imposed sanctions on Russia in 2014, I asked my Chinese colleagues: “Do you think the Americans can impose sanctions with regards to China?” They were certain that they can’t. They said that it was impossible, because the US depends on China just as strongly as China depends on the US. That is, America will be more expensive for itself. Two years had passed, and Trump launched a trade war against China. And Beijing now understood that America is an enemy that will drown the Chinese economic miracle by all means. Prior to this, my reasonings with my Chinese colleagues were not very convincing, just as, however, my book you mentioned did not greatly influence our political and economic elite. My arguments were dismissed. Although we have been saying for many, many years that the dollar should be refused. Foreign exchange reserves should have been removed from dollar instruments, from the euros-to-gold, it should have been necessary to switch to our own monetary and financial system, develop our own settlements in national currencies with partners. We have been offering all this since the 2000s, when it was already clear what the world economic development was leading to. And now, finally, everyone has seen the light.

The Americans zombified Ukrainians and turned 150-200 thousand people into a fighting machine that works without thinking”

– Judging by the heart-rending howl that comes from the camp of the liberals, as well as the events in Ukraine, not everyone has seen the light yet.

– Yes, we are faced with the fact that in 8 years the Americans have managed to fool the Ukrainian people so much that the people who resist the Russian army, the so-called Armed Forces of Ukraine, look simply zombified. They are manipulated like puppets. It is not Zelensky who commands the Ukrainian Army, not even the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and the General Staff – but the Pentagon. It commands very effectively from the point of view in the fight of “to the last Ukrainian soldier”, because these zombie guys do not give up. But they are in an absolutely hopeless situation. All experts have already acknowledged that Russia won the military special operation, that the Ukraine has no chance of resistance, that the entire military infrastructure has been destroyed… The Armed Forces of Ukraine is only left with surrendering in order to minimize human losses. However, Ukrainian officers (and especially, of course, nationalists) act like zombies controlled from the outside – they follow instructions from the Pentagon that come to their personal computers and special tablets.

Moreover, the Americans command their marionettes from the Armed Forces of Ukraine, breaking them into the appropriate units. Each unit is assigned a number, and every number is given artificial ‘military intelligence’ with tasks every day. They really turned 150-200 thousand people into a fighting machine that works without thinking, only stupidly follows all their orders. For 8 years, they have achieved that they forced a significant part of the youth of Ukraine not only to stand up against Russia, but through brainwashing made them their weak-willed tools. Not just cannon fodder, but controlled cannon fodder.

Being in an absolutely hopeless situation, surrounded, deprived of any supply at all, they still continue the senseless war, dooming themselves to death, and dragging the surrounding civilians with them to the grave. This is a clear example of how modern American technology works. We must understand that in front of us, we have a very powerful force. You know, before [the war], we have heard from Russian experts and politicians that the Ukrainians themselves will suffocate economically and then crawl to us, and in general where will Ukraine go without us? After all, it will not be able to ensure the reproduction of the economy without our resources and cooperation with us. Indeed, Ukraine has entered a state of economic catastrophe, as we expected, as we explained to our Ukrainian colleagues. The Ukrainian republic has become the poorest state in Europe along with Moldova. Due to the fact that Ukraine has terminated ties with Russia, its losses amount to more than 100 billion dollars. Nevertheless, this did not prevent American and British political strategists and instructors from forming a 200,000-strong army of thugs and murderers who completely inadequately imagine reality and are an obedient instrument of American interests.

– Aren’t there equally obedient American marionettes in Russia? Is it only Ukrainians who were zombified?

– Yes, and here it should be noted that practically the same thing is happening with the Central Bank, but only on other issues.

– Before we move on to the Central Bank, let me clarify. You said that you are working on introducing a new currency. And in what format and with what team?

– We have been doing this for a long time as a group of scholars. 10 years ago, at the Astana Economic Forum, we presented the report “Toward sustainable growth through a fair world economic order” with a project for the transition to a new world financial and monetary system, where we proposed to reform the IMF system based on the so-called special drawing rights, and on the basis of a modified IMF system – to create a worldwide accounting currency. By the way, this idea aroused great interest then: our project was recognized as the best international economic project. But in a practical sense, none of the states, represented by the official monetary authorities, was interested in this project. Although it was followed by Nursultan Nazarbayev’s publications, which proposed a new currency. If I remember correctly, he offered Altyn.

– Altyn? That is interesting.

Yes, the publication of his article on this topic even took place in Izvestia. But the matter did not come to negotiations and political decisions, and to this day it is rather a proposal of experts. But I am sure that the current situation is forcing us to create new payment-settlement instruments very quickly, because the dollar will practically be impossible to use, and the ruble, due to the incompetent policy of the Central Bank, which, in fact, acts in the interests of international speculators, cannot find sustainability.

Objectively, the ruble could become a reserve currency along with the yuan and the rupee. It would be possible to move to a multi-currency system based on national currencies. But we still need some equivalent for pricing… Now we are working on the concept of the exchange space of the Eurasian Economic Union, where one of the tasks is the formation of new pricing criteria. That is, if we want metal prices to be formed not in London, but here in Russia, just like oil prices, then this implies the emergence of some other currency, especially if we want to act not only within the Eurasian Economic Union, and in Eurasia in a broad sense, at the center of a new world economic order, to which I include China, India, Indochina, Japan, Korea and Iran. These are large countries, all of which have their own fundamental national interests. After the current stories with the confiscation of [Russia’s] dollar reserves, I think no country will want to use another country’s currency as a reserve. So a new tool is needed. And from my point of view, such a tool, for a start, can become some kind of synthetic settlement currency, which would be built as such an aggregated index.

– Can I have some examples? What it is?

– Well, let’s say, ECU ₠ (European Currency Unit) – there was such an experience in the European Union. It was built like a basket of currencies. All countries that participate in the creation of a new accounting currency should be entitled to the presence of their national currency in this basket. And the common currency is formed as an index, as a weighted average component of these national currencies. Well, to this we must add, from my point of view, commodities: not only gold, but also oil, and metal, and grain, and water. A sort of commodity harness, which, according to our estimates, should include about 20 goods. They, in fact, form world price proportions and therefore must participate in the basket for the formation of a new accounting currency. And an international treaty is needed, which will determine the rules for the circulation of this currency and create an organization like the International Monetary Fund. By the way, 15 years ago we proposed reforming the IMF, but now it is already obvious that a new monetary financial system will have to be built without the West. Perhaps someday Europe will join it and the US will also be forced to admit it. But so far it is clear that we will have to build without them, for example, on the basis of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. However, these are just expert developments, which we will submit to the authorities in the coming month.

– And at the level of the government or at the level of the president?

– We will first send it to the departments that are responsible for these issues. We will hold discussions, develop some kind of common understanding, and then go to the political level.

The Central Bank continues the policy of pandering to the enemy”

– In your Telegram channel, you write that all that remains is to nationalize the Bank of Russia. Why hasn’t it been done yet? For example, there is a point of view that Elvira Nabiullina remains at her post as a screen, but will no longer manages anything serious. Can you refute or confirm this?

– You know, I don’t want to engage in conspiracy theories.

– This is a conspiracy theory?

– Yes, we can talk about the American Deep State in conspiracy terms. In this case, conspiracy theories are a very appropriate direction of thought, because in America, behind the screen of presidents and congressmen, there are some deep forces – special services. And in our Fatherland, everything is simple. We have a president, a head of state who has built a vertical form of power. It is absolutely clear in our country how the parliament and the judiciary are formed. Here, no conspiracy theory, in general, can be applied. The same goes for the Central Bank. Let me remind you that, according to the law on the Central Bank, all its property is federal property. Therefore, the Central Bank is a state structure, there is not the slightest doubt about it.

– And they always said that the Central Bank was separated, as if on the sidelines.

– The Board of Directors of the Central Bank is appointed by the State Duma on the proposal of the President. I served for many years as its representative on the national banking board, which oversees the activities of the Central Bank. I can say that there is no doubt that the Central Bank is the state body for regulating monetary circulation, and it is also the main financial regulator in the country.

But there are nuances. The Constitution stipulates that the Central Bank conducts its policy independently, that is, it is independent of the government. But this does not mean that it is independent of the state. This is a state-owned agency. Here the judicial system in our country is also officially independent of the government. Therefore, being an independent body, the Central Bank is nevertheless formed as a state regulatory body and must perform the tasks that are necessary for the development of our economy. To do this, it is necessary to involve the Central Bank in strategic planning. The classics of monetary circulation stipulates that the main goal of the monetary authorities, that is, the Central Bank, should be to create conditions for maximizing investment. That is what the banking system should be doing – maximizing investment. Because the more investments, the more production, the higher the technical level, the lower the costs and the lower the inflation, the more stable the economy. It is possible to achieve macroeconomic stabilization in the modern economy only on the basis of accelerated scientific and technological progress. Attempts to target inflation (such a buzzword), which the Central Bank has been practically imitating for the past 10 years, by manipulating the key interest rate against the backdrop of a freely floating ruble, is short-sighted, primitive and counterproductive. Usually these measures are recommended by the IMF for underdeveloped countries that themselves do not know how to think.

What is inflation targeting in practice? This is an extremely primitive and internally contradictory set of measures, the application of which drives the economy into a stagflation trap. The Central Bank threw the ruble into free float, which is absurd from the point of view of inflation targeting in an open economy, where the exchange rate directly affects prices. And we see how the devaluation of the ruble periodically accelerates prices. In addition, they reduced monetary policy to only one absolutely primitive tool – the manipulation of the key interest rate. But the key rate is the percentage at which the Central Bank lends money to the economy and withdraws money from the economy. Its attempts to suppress inflation by raising the interest rate cannot succeed in today’s economy, because the higher the interest rate, the less credit, the less investment, the lower the technical level and competitiveness. The decrease in the latter entails the devaluation of the ruble in 3-4 years, after they raise the interest rate, supposedly to fight inflation. Having let the ruble exchange rate float freely, they, in fact, gave it at the mercy of currency speculators.

The Americans really like these politics, so they praise the leadership of our Central Bank and the Ministry of Finance in every possible way. After all, what is important to them? So that everything is tied to the dollar, so that the ruble is a ‘junk’ currency that is unstable. And this is a paradox, because the amount of foreign exchange reserves of the Russian Federation has recently been 3 times more than the ruble money supply! This means that the Central Bank could have stabilized the exchange rate at any level. But it didn’t do that.

And who are the speculators to whom the Central Bank actually threw the ruble to be torn to pieces? The main speculators are American hedge funds, which actually shape the ruble exchange rate by manipulating the market. But the Central Bank does not notice this, or rather, pretends to not notice. In order to keep them in the foreign exchange market by raising the interest rate, the Central Bank kills credit and makes our economy dependent on foreign sources of credit, and the foreign exchange financial system dependent on the interests of speculators. This is in whose interests the Central Bank works, hiding behind cool buzzwords like ‘inflation targeting’, which has shamefully failed in these past years in terms of real price dynamics. So in our country the weakest point of the entire national security system in general is the Central Bank. Its leadership is hit by the enemy’s cognitive-weapon, in other words, zombified by it. In fact, our monetary authorities are doing what the enemy needs.

By the way, I proved mathematically and chronologically that the first wave of sanctions was imposed against Russia only after the Central Bank prepared the ground for this, namely, it let the ruble exchange rate float freely and announced that it would raise the interest rate, if inflation would start in the country. As soon as the Central Bank moved to this strange policy, the Americans immediately imposed sanctions. Their speculators ensured the collapse of the ruble exchange rate, this caused an inflationary wave, and the Central Bank, on the instructions of the IMF, raised the interest rate, which completely paralyzed our economy. The total damage from this policy today has already reached 50 trillion rubles of non-produced products and about 20 trillion rubles of unfinished investments. Now you have to add to this the 300 billion dollars invested in foreign assets, which are now frozen – that’s the damage.

Therefore, when we talk about the nationalization of the Central Bank, we are not talking about formally nationalizing it (it has already been nationalized), but about bringing it into a policy of conformity with national interests. Right now, its policy is contrary to national interests. And there is no conspiracy here. We see in whose interests such a policy is pursued. The Central Bank raised interest rates to 20 percent, giving the bankers a dominant position in the economy. Possessing the most expensive and scarce resource, money, they determine which enterprise will survive, and which enterprise will die, go bankrupt, and so on. Rising interest rates are holding the entire Russian economy hostage to a handful of bankers. This is the first. Secondly, the leadership of the Central Bank allowed another collapse of the ruble exchange rate and closed the currency exchange. As a result, today banks have become the main currency speculators: they buy currency for about 90 rubles per dollar, and sell it for 125. The difference settles down for them as excess profit.

– But why, in your opinion, does the Central Bank of the Russian Federation pursue a policy in the interests of the enemy?

– As I said, it does this on the recommendation of the International Monetary Fund. But its interests are also shared by our large banks, which objectively like this policy, as well as our monetary and financial structures, which are also involved in manipulating the ruble exchange rate. Therefore, an influential lobby is formed around this policy, which supports this policy based on its own private interests. These interests run counter to the interests of the country, they are directly opposite to them. And, if you look at what the Central Bank is doing today, I have no doubts that it continues the policy of actually pandering to the enemy. It undermines macroeconomic stability by allowing international speculators to manipulate the ruble exchange rate and does not control the foreign exchange position of banks that have become currency speculators, although the Central Bank could easily withdraw banks from the foreign exchange market by fixing their foreign exchange position, forbidding banks to buy foreign currency. And secondly – by raising the interest rate, the Central Bank actually killed investments in the development of the Russian economy, which are very much needed right now, primarily for import substitution and for the restoration of economic sovereignty, while our leadership says that we should not be afraid of sanctions, because they create conditions for economic growth, for import substitutions…

Look, about a third of EU imports have left our market. These are huge opportunities for import substitution. If we assume that our enterprises begin to develop these markets, then we will develop at a rate of 15 percent per year. But this requires loans. Import substitution cannot arise without loans. We need loans to set up production facilities, to master new technologies, to load idle production capacities. We have long developed such a strategy of advanced development at the Academy of Sciences, and we are promoting it. But, unfortunately, the insane, from our point of view, policy of the Central Bank has quite specific influential structures which it likes and supports. That is why the policy is so stable.

It is possible to stabilize the ruble in three days”

– Sergey Yuryevich, if this is not conspiracy theory, then why does the Central Bank continue to pursue such a policy? Only based on the interests of lobbyists?

– To whom is the war, and to whom is the mother dear. Commercial banks earn a 40% profit on currency speculation. You bought 90 rubles per dollar – sold it for 125. 35 rubles – nothing is easier! As a result, we have inflation, imports are becoming more expensive, everyone sees this insane rate. Prices for all goods are rising, but the banks are making super profits.

Again, a very influential lobby has formed around this policy, and admitting the failure of such a strategy for many people means, in fact, admitting their incompetence and even sabotage. And speculators with large banks are quite influential structures in our country that influence decision-making.

– Well and what, does this information not reach the first person (Putin), is it blocked?

– When I was an adviser, I communicated this information.

– Were you listened to?

– Yes, there were discussions, discussed at the Economic Council, then it was closed so as not to irritate the officials. Now I don’t want to comment on it. We see today that if we do not change the monetary policy, then it will simply be impossible for us to survive in this hybrid war. We now need to counter economic sanctions with a serious increase in domestic production. There are production facilities for this, people, raw materials, brains – too, but there is no money. Right now, the simplest thing that the state can give people is money.

– What is your feeling? Is there an understanding at the top?

– I think that you need to directly address this question to them.

– But many people call you almost the Number 1 person in the current situation – a public figure who can save Russia.

– Thank you for this review. I try my best.

– I just want to understand: if before there was no prophet in our Fatherland, now has he appeared? Is this a temporary situation with the Central Bank?

– It is so protracted, I would say, for 30 years. If we had carried out a competent monetary policy in accordance with the requirements of the new world economic order, the integral system, we would have developed like China – by 10 percent a year. There were such possibilities. And we basically been stomping in the same spot for these past 30 years. So the point is not even whether they listen or not, you just need to look objectively and see how China and India are developing and how we are developing. What prevented us from developing in exactly the same way?

Moreover, the control system of the new world economic order, which I describe in my books, is universal. She worked successfully in Japan before the Americans broke the Japanese economic growth. And even in Ethiopia, where they also began to form this management model (and achieved growth by several times). That is, this universal management model of the modern economy, focused on the growth of social welfare through investment in a new technological order, needs to be implemented. At the same time, of course, the targeted use of money implies a high responsibility. Throwing money from a helicopter – is not our thing.

– It’s not our path.

– We are talking about targeted credit emission based on modern digital tools with a strict control system focused on investments in new technologies. We know how to do this, how to minimize the human factor through the introduction of digital technologies, including the digital ruble. But this is disadvantageous for those who still adhere to the old strategies. They made a cash cow out of Russia, they sucked out 100 billion dollars from it abroad to offshore companies. But now the Americans have closed offshorization for us. There is a real opportunity, we must use it.

– What would you advise people? Now the main query on the Internet search engines is where to invest money in an era of turbulence. What should people do?

– First of all, do not make sudden movements, I would say that. In any case, what certainly is not necessary – to run after dollars or euros. Because we do not know what will happen next with these currencies. If our system is disconnected from the Western system, then our banks cannot effectively invest dollars and euros anywhere except in currency speculation. But I hope that our authorities will still curb the foreign exchange market.

In this context, what the banks did, raising the interest rate on foreign currency deposits sharply, turned out to be a clear overkill, which spurred panic. I think the ruble will stabilize if, of course, speculators are removed from the foreign exchange market and foreign currency is sold only for importers and people who transfer money abroad within reasonable limits to relatives or are going on a business trip in accordance with the regulations. The rest is to block the channels of currency leakage. Then our foreign exchange inflow will normalize again.

You know, we have a very positive trade balance. Mandatory sale of 80% of foreign exchange earnings has been introduced. If this revenue is sold on the stock exchange, then the amount of currency will be more than what importers need. We will have a surplus of currency. This means that the ruble will strengthen, that is, it will return to the old indicators – 80 or even 70 rubles per dollar. But until the Central Bank removes speculators from the market and allows commercial banks to become such, the ruble exchange rate will not stabilize. So, unfortunately, the monetary authorities have not yet come to their senses and have not begun to implement the correct policy of macroeconomic stabilization, I can’t give any advice other than investing in gold if possible (especially since the government removed VAT from gold). There are no other real assets and no safe haven.

– So, buy gold?

– Buy the essentials. Or invest in real estate, in something reliable. As for investments in dollars and euros… They have ceased to be a currency for us. This is no longer a currency, but some obligations of other countries that may or may not be fulfilled. So we need to look for other possibilities. But I would like to emphasize once again that with the right policies, we can very quickly stabilize the ruble and even restore its purchasing power.

– And in what perspective, after all?

– It can be done even tomorrow, you understand? The Primakov government and [Viktor] Gerashchenko did it in one week.

– Is the government capable of doing this?

– Of course it can. To do this, in general, two decisions need to be made: to fix the currency position of commercial banks and introduce the norms for the sale of foreign currency for non-trading operations, to keep the freely convertible foreign exchange market only for trading operations. That’s all. This can be written in 15 minutes and announced within a day, introduced within three days – and the ruble will stabilize.

“Events like this happen once a century”: Sergey Glazyev on the breakdown of epochs and changing ways of life

March 28, 2022

Original Link:  https://www.business-gazeta.ru/article/544773

Translated via Yandex

“Events like this happen once a century”: Sergey Glazyev on the breakdown of epochs and changing ways of life

Is it possible to stabilize the ruble in three days and why don’t the Ukrainian”zombies” give up?

“After failing to weaken China head-on through a trade war, the Americans shifted the main blow to Russia, which they see as a weak link in the global geopolitics and economy. The Anglo-Saxons are trying to implement their eternal Russophobic ideas to destroy our country, and at the same time to weaken China, because the strategic alliance of the Russian Federation and the PRC is too tough for the United States. They don’t have the economic or military power to destroy us together, not separately,” says Sergey Glazyev, an academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences and former adviser to the Russian President. Glazyev spoke in an interview with BUSINESS Online about what opportunities are now opening up for the Russian economy, whether the Central Bank is pandering to the enemy and whether a new world currency will replace the dollar.

“The new world economic order is ideologically socialist”

– Sergey Yuryevich, commenting on today’s tragic events, you wrote in your telegram channel that it was necessary to read your book about the” last world war”, written about 6 years ago. How did you manage to predict everything so accurately?

— The fact is that there are long-term patterns of economic development, the analysis and understanding of which allows us to predict events that are currently taking place. We are now experiencing a simultaneous change in technological and world economic structures, while the technological basis of the economy is changing, the transition to fundamentally new technologies is taking place, and the management system is also being transformed. This kind of event occurs about once a century. However, technological patterns change about once every 50 years, and their change is usually accompanied by a technological revolution, depression, and an arms race. And world economic patterns change once every 100 years, and their change is accompanied by world wars and social revolutions. This is due to the fact that the ruling elite of the core countries of the old world economic structure prevents changes, does not take into account the emergence of more effective management systems, tries to block the development of new world leaders using them, and tries to maintain its hegemony and monopoly position by any means, including military and revolutionary ones.

Say, 100 years ago, the British Empire was trying to maintain its hegemony in the world. When it was already losing economically to the combined resources of the Russian Empire and Germany, the First World War provoked by British intelligence was unleashed, during which all three European empires self-destructed. I am talking about the collapse of tsarist Russia, the German and Austro-Hungarian empires, but this also includes the fourth-Ottoman Porto. As for Britain, it held global dominance for a while and even became the largest empire on the planet. But due to the inexorable laws of socio-economic development, the colonial world economic system, based in fact on slave labor, could no longer provide economic growth. Introduced two completely new political models of Soviet and American — has demonstrated a much greater production efficiency, because they were organized on different principles: not for private family capitalism, and the power of large transnational corporations with centralized structures of economic regulation and limitless monetary emission using Fiat currency (paper or electronic means — approx. ed.). They enabled mass production of products much more efficiently than the control systems of the colonial empires of the nineteenth century.

The emergence of social states in the USSR and the United States with centralized management systems made it possible to make a sharp leap in their economic development; In Europe, the corporate governance system was formed, unfortunately, according to the Nazi model in Germany, and also not without the help of British intelligence. Hitler, backed by British intelligence agencies and American capital, quickly deployed a centralized corporate governance system in Germany, which allowed the Third Reich to quickly take over all of Europe. With God’s help, we defeated this German (or rather, European — taking into account today’s realities) fascism. After that, two models remained in the world, which I refer to as the imperial world economic order: the Soviet and the Western (with the center in the United States). After the collapse of the Soviet Union, which failed to withstand global competition due to the fact that the directive management system was not flexible enough to meet the needs of technological progress, the United States for a while seized global dominance.

— But now this period of “American unipolar loneliness” is already passing, and probably not only thanks to Russia, but first of all to China and the Asian regions as such. Isn’t that right?

— Indeed, the hierarchical vertical structures characteristic of the imperial world economic system turned out to be too rigid to ensure continuous innovation processes and lost their comparative effectiveness in ensuring the growth of the world economy. On its periphery, a new world economic order has been formed, based on flexible management models, a network organization of production, where the state works as an integrator, combining the interests of various social groups around achieving one goal — raising public welfare. The most impressive example of such an integrated world economy today is China, which has been three times faster than the growth rate of the American economy for more than 30 years. At the moment, China already surpasses the United States in terms of output, exports of high-tech goods, and growth rates.

Another example of the model of the new world economic order, which we called integral (due to the fact that the state in it unites all social groups that differ in their interests), is India. It has a different political system, but it also has the primacy of public interests over private interests, and the State seeks to maximize growth rates in order to combat poverty. In this sense, the new world economic order is ideologically socialist. At the same time, it uses market mechanisms of competition, which makes it possible to ensure the highest concentration of resources for the technological revolution in order to ensure economic leaps based on a new advanced technological order. If we look at the growth rate since 1995, the Chinese economy has grown 10-fold, while the American economy has grown only 15 percent. Thus, it is already obvious to everyone that the pace of global economic development is currently shifting to Asia: China, India and Indochina countries already produce more products than the United States and the European Union. If we add Japan or Korea, where the management system is similar in its principles of integrating society around the goal of improving public welfare, we can say that today this new world economic order already dominates the world, and the center of reproduction of the world economy has moved to Southeast Asia. Of course, the American ruling elite cannot agree with this.

“Put up with it, I’d say…

– yes. They, like the British Empire once did, seek to maintain their hegemony in the world. The events taking place today are a manifestation of how the financial and power oligarchic elite of the United States is trying to maintain world domination. It can be said that for the past 15 years, it has been waging a global hybrid war, seeking to chaotize countries beyond its control and restrain the development of the PRC. But due to the already archaic management system, they cannot do this. The financial crisis of 2008 was such a transitional moment when the life cycle of the outgoing technological order actually ended and the process of mass redistribution of capital to a new technological order began, the core of which is a complex of nanobioengineering and information communication technologies. All countries started pumping money into their economies. The simplest thing a modern state can do is to give all businesses access to cheap long-term money so that they can adopt new technologies. But if in America and Europe such funds were spent mainly in financial bubbles and provided budget deficits, then in China this huge monetary issue was completely directed to the growth of production and the development of new technologies. There were no financial bubbles, while the ultra-high monetization of the Chinese economy did not lead to inflation, the growth of the money supply was accompanied by an increase in the output of goods, the introduction of new advanced technologies and an increase in public welfare.

Today, economic competition has already led to the fact that the United States has lost its leadership. If you remember, Donald Trump tried to contain China’s development through a trade war, but nothing came of it.

“The Americans opened a biological war front by launching the coronavirus in China”

— Why not?” Did Trump, who is used to taking risks and going all-in, not have enough determination?

— And even Trump couldn’t do it, because China has a more efficient management system, which allows us to concentrate the available production resources as fully as possible. At the same time, effective money management keeps the money issue in the contour of expanded reproduction of the real sector of the economy, focusing on financing development investments. China has reached the highest savings rate of any country: about 45 percent of GDP is invested, compared to 20 percent in the United States or Russia. This, in fact, ensures the ultra-high growth rate of the Chinese economy.

In general, the United States was doomed to defeat in this trade war, because the Middle Kingdom can produce products more efficiently and finance development cheaper. The entire banking system in China is state — owned, it operates as a single development institution, directing cash flows to expand output and develop new technologies. In the United States, the money supply is used to finance the budget deficit and is reallocated to financial bubbles. As a result, the efficiency of the US financial and economic system is 20 percent-there only one in five dollars reaches the real sector, and in China almost 90 percent (that is, almost all the yuan created by the Central Bank of the PRC) feed the contours of expanding production and ensure ultra — high economic growth.

Trump’s attempts to limit China’s development through trade war methods have failed. At the same time, they boomeranged on the United States itself. Then the Americans opened a biological war front, launching the coronavirus into China, hoping that the Chinese leadership would not cope with this epidemic and chaos would arise in China. However, the epidemic has shown poor health care effectiveness and has created chaos in the United States itself. The Chinese management system has also shown much greater efficiency here. In China, the death rate is significantly lower, and they coped with the pandemic much faster. Already in 2020, they even reached economic growth of 2 percent, while in the United States there was a decline of 10 percent of GDP (analysts noted the largest drop since World War IIed. ). Now the Chinese have regained growth rates of about 7 percent per year, and there is no doubt that China will continue to develop confidently, expanding the production of a new technological mode.

In parallel with the trade war against China, the US special services were preparing a war against Russia, since the Anglo-Saxon geopolitical tradition considers our country to be the main obstacle to the establishment of world domination by the power and financial elite of the United States and Great Britain. I must say that the war against the Russian Federation unfolded immediately after the annexation of Crimea and after the American special services organized a coup in Ukraine. They can be said to have tricked Russia into agreeing to the American occupation of Ukraine, considering it as a temporary phenomenon. However, the Americans took root in the Square, created not only strong points, raising Nazis under their wing, but also trained the Nazi armed forces, gave the Nazis the opportunity to get a military education, trained them in their academies, and “flashed” all the Armed Forces of Ukraine with them. And for 8 years, they prepared the Armed Forces of Ukraine to fight the only enemy-Russia. While the mass media, which is also completely controlled by the Americans in Ukraine, formed an image of the enemy in the public consciousness.

In addition, the United States used the currency and financial front of a hybrid war against the Russian Federation. Already in 2014, they imposed the first financial sanctions and knocked out a significant part of Western loans from the Russian economy. Now we are seeing the next phase, when they have effectively disconnected Russia from the global monetary and financial system, where they dominate. However, all this was predicted by me 10 years ago, based on the theory of changing world economic patterns and the specific logic of the US ruling elite, focused on world domination. Anglo-Saxon geopolitics is traditionally oriented against the Russian Empire and its successors, the USSR and the Russian Federation, because, since the time of the British Empire, Russia has been seen as the main opponent of the Anlo-Saxons. All the so-called geopolitical science that was written in London was reduced, in fact, to a set of recommendations on how to destroy Russia as the dominant force in Eurasia. I mean all sorts of speculative constructions like “countries of the sea against countries of the land” and so on.

— Why did Russia interfere with the “countries of the sea” so much? After all, geographically we have never bordered on the UK.

— In this regard, a formula was invented: whoever controls Eurasia controls the whole world. Actually, applied development has already gone further. Zbigniew Brzezinski’s famous theorem says that in order to defeat Russia as a superpower, you need to tear Ukraine away from it. All this political dogma, which, it would seem, has long gone down in history, is nevertheless reproduced today in the thinking of the American political elite. I must say that there are still courses in 19th-century geopolitics at Harvard and Yale University, sharpening the brains of future American politicians against Russia. So they, in fact, jumped on this old and time-tested Russophobic stream, which has always been characteristic of Anglo-Saxon geopolitics. And, considering Russia as the main opponent of its domination in the world, they used Ukraine as an outpost, or rather, as a tool for undermining Russia, weakening it, and in the future for destroying it as a sovereign state, in accordance with Brzezinski’s proposal.

So, what is happening today was easily predicted, based on a combination of long-term patterns of economic development, which actually condemned the world to a hybrid war, and the traditional Russophobia of the Anglo-Saxon political elite. After the weakening of the PRC did not turn out head-on through a trade war, the Americans transferred the main blow of their military and political power to Russia, which they see as a weak link in the global geopolitics and economy. In addition, the Anglo-Saxons seek to establish dominance over Russia in order to implement their eternal Russophobic ideas to destroy our country, and at the same time to weaken China, because the strategic alliance of the Russian Federation and the PRC is too tough for the United States. They have neither the economic nor military power to destroy us together, not separately, so the US initially sought to put us at odds with China. They didn’t succeed. But they, taking advantage of our, I would say, complacency, seized control of Ukraine, and today they are using our fraternal republic as a weapon of war to destroy Russia, and then-to seize control of our resources in order, I repeat, to strengthen their position and weaken the position of China. In general, all this is obvious, as twice two makes four.

“The Americans will not be able to win, just as the British did not succeed in their time”

— It’s probably obvious, but not for everyone. There are many opponents of an alliance with China among the Russian elite. At least before the special operation in Ukraine, it seemed to these people that American and Western culture were clearer and closer to us than Chinese hieroglyphic wisdom, and that we would always find a common language with our “Western partners”.

— You know, back in 2015 I wrote the book ” The Last World War. The United States starts and loses, ” which you mentioned at the beginning of the conversation — everything was thought out and justified there. The United States launched a global hybrid war-starting with the Orange revolutions – to disrupt those regions of the world that it did not control — in order to strengthen its position and weaken the position of its geopolitical competitors. After the famous Munich speech of President Putin (February 2007ed. they realized that they had lost control of Yeltsin’s Russia, and they were seriously concerned. In 2008, the financial crisis broke out and it became clear that the transition to a new technological order was beginning, and the old world economic order and the old management system no longer provide for progressive economic development. China takes the lead. Well, then the logic of the world war unfolds, only not in the forms that existed 100 years ago, but on three conditional fronts — monetary and financial (where the United States still dominates the world), trade and economic (where they have already lost the primacy to China) and information and cognitive (where the Americans also have superior technologies). They are using all three fronts to try to hold the initiative and maintain the hegemony of their corporations.

And finally, the fourth front — the biological one, which opened with the appearance of the coronavirus from the US-China laboratory in Wuhan. Today we see that a whole network of biological laboratories existed in Ukraine. So the United States has long been preparing to open a biological front for world War II.

The fifth, and most obvious, front is, in fact, the front of military operations-as the last tool for forcing the states they control to obey them implicitly. Today, the situation on this front is also getting worse. In other words, active operations are underway on all five fronts of the global hybrid war and it is possible to predict the result. The Americans will not be able to win, just as the British did not succeed in their time. Although Britain formally won the Second World War, they lost politically and economically. The British lost their entire empire, more than 90 percent of their territory, and 95 percent of their population. Two years after the Second World War, where they were the victors, their empire collapsed like a house of cards, because the other two winners — the USSR and the United States — did not need this empire and considered it an anachronism. Similarly, the world will not need American multinational corporations, the US dollar, US currency and financial technologies and financial pyramids. All this will soon be a thing of the past. Southeast Asia will become an obvious leader in global economic development, and a new world economic order will be formed before our eyes.

— To paraphrase Remarque, we can say that changes have finally come to the western front. But what signs do you see of this powerful global system’s imminent demise?

— After the Americans first seized the Venezuelan foreign exchange reserves and handed them over to the opposition, then-the Afghan foreign exchange reserves, before that — the Iranian ones, and now — the Russian ones, it became absolutely clear that the dollar ceased to be the world currency. Following the Americans, this stupidity was also committed by Europeans — the euro and the pound ceased to be world currencies. Therefore, the old monetary and financial system is living out its last days. After the US dollars that no one needs are sent back to America from Asian countries, the collapse of the global monetary and financial system based on dollars and euros is inevitable. Leading countries are switching to national currencies, and the euro and dollar are no longer foreign exchange reserves.

— How do you see the world after the disappearance of the dollar monopoly?

— We are currently working on a draft international agreement on the introduction of a new world settlement currency, pegged to the national currencies of the participating countries and to exchange-traded goods that determine real values. We won’t need American and European banks. A new payment system based on modern digital technologies with a blockchain is developing in the world, where banks are losing their importance. Classical capitalism based on private banks is a thing of the past. International law is being restored. All key international relations, including the issue of world currency circulation, are beginning to be formed on the basis of contracts. At the same time, the importance of national sovereignty is being restored, because sovereign countries are coming to an agreement. Global economic cooperation is based on joint investments aimed at improving the well-being of peoples. Trade liberalization ceases to be a priority, national priorities are respected, and each state builds a system for protecting the internal market and its economic space that it considers necessary. In other words, the era of liberal globalization is over. Before our eyes, a new world economic order is being formed — an integral one, in which some states and private banks lose their private monopoly on the issue of money, on the use of military force, and so on.

“The third scenario is catastrophic. Destruction of humanity”

— And why did you name your book “The Last World War?” What makes you hope that this global war is really the last?

— I called this world war the last, because we see that there are several scenarios of movement out of today’s crisis. The first scenario, which I have already described, is a calm and prosperous one. It consists in overcoming the US monopoly. In order to do this in the financial sector, you need to abandon the dollar. In order to overcome the monopoly in the information and cognitive sphere, we need to isolate our information space from the American one and switch to our own information technologies. Creating their own contours of economic reproduction, but without the US dollar and euro, and relying on their information technologies for managing money, the countries of the new world economic order ensure high rates of economic development, while the Western world collapses. There is a situation of collapsing financial pyramids, disorganization and a growing economic crisis, aggravated by rising inflation due to uncontrolled money issuance over the past 12 years.

The second scenario of possible development of events is similar to the one that Hitler wanted to implement during the change of previous world economic structures. This is an attempt to create a world government with a superhuman ideology. If Hitler thought of the German nation as superhumans, then the current ideologists of world domination impose a transition to a post-humanoid state on humanity. In contrast to the posthumanism of the West, the core countries of the new world economic order are characterized by a socialist ideology, albeit with respect for private interests, protection of private property and the use of market mechanisms. In China, India, Japan, and Korea, socialist ideology — or rather, a mixture of socialist ideology, national interests, and market competition-dominates. It is this mixture that forms a fundamentally new power and political elite, focused on economic development and the growth of the welfare of nations.

Western politicians, intellectuals, and businessmen have a different approach. What we are seeing today is an attempt to create a certain image of a new world order with a world government at the head, where people are driven into an electronic concentration camp. You can see from the example of restrictions during the pandemic, how it happened: all people are given tags, access to public goods is regulated by QR codes, and everyone is forced to walk in formation. By the way, in the Rockefeller Foundation scenario back in 2009, the pandemic and, in fact, everything that happened in connection with it was laid out in a stunning way — they actually predicted the future. This scenario was called Lock Step, that is, “Walk in formation”, and the Western world followed it. By sacrificing their own democratic values, people are being forced to obey commands. International organizations, including the World Health Organization, are used as a kind of base for assembling a world government that would be subordinate to private capital.

But, I must say, Donald Trump strongly hindered these plans, because he stopped the signing of the transatlantic and trans-Pacific partnership agreements, where all countries participating in the treaties sacrificed national sovereignty in all disputes with big business. And you need to understand that today any multinational corporation can act as a foreign investor, including in the United States. According to these agreements, if foreign capital is present in a business, then in a dispute with the national government, an international arbitration court is formed, it is not clear how and by whom it was drawn up. And these unelected judges, appointed, in fact, by large international businesses, resolve these disputes. In fact, the point was that the state was losing all sovereignty in regulating relations with big business. However, Trump stopped the agreement — the United States did not sign it. Thus, the process of forming a world government was stopped. This is the second alternative, and it is currently experiencing a crisis due to the collapse of the idea of globalization and the gradual abandonment of “pandemic” restrictions.

We must understand that the world government option is incompatible with a sovereign Russia, with our independence and role in the world. In the globalist scenario, the Russian Federation is considered as a territory that is intended for exploitation by Western multinational corporations. At the same time, the” indigenous population ” should serve their interests. Under this scenario, Russia disappears as an independent entity, as does China. The Western world government may incorporate some of our oligarchs into its own version of the future, but only on the second and third roles.

The third scenario is catastrophic. The destruction of humanity…

— The apocalypse everyone’s talking about?”

— Well, not all of them… But everyone is definitely afraid. By the way, about American biolabs that synthesize dangerous viruses, it was said in another book of mine, published a little later: “The Plague of the XXI century: how to avoid disaster and overcome the crisis?”.

I remember that back in 1996, when I had to work in the UN Security Council, I proposed to develop a national biosecurity concept. Because even then, almost 30 years ago, genetics was a sufficiently advanced science to synthesize viruses directed against people of a certain race or a certain gender, a certain age. This has long been possible. You can create a virus that will work only against whites or, conversely, only against blacks, only against men or only against women. Now the Americans are going further — you can see that, according to the data of our Ministry of Defense, announced the day before, American biolabs were developing viruses aimed against the Slavs. Apparently, it is now possible to make a virus against some ethnic group that has its own genetic code.

What is happening in Ukraine today is an echo of the agony of the US ruling elite, which cannot accept that it will no longer be a world leader. This is becoming clear to everyone — at least to those who are not connected with Americans by their interests and are not subject to their cognitive influence.

Here is an example. When the United States imposed anti-Russian sanctions in 2014, I asked my Chinese colleagues: “Do you think the Americans can impose sanctions on China?” They were sure not. It was said that this was impossible, because the United States depends on China as much as China depends on the United States. That is, it will be more expensive for America. Two years later, Trump launched a trade war against China. And Beijing now understands that America is an enemy that will sink the Chinese economic miracle in any way possible. Before that, my Chinese colleagues were not very convinced by my arguments, just as my book mentioned by you did not greatly influence our political and economic elite. My arguments were dismissed. Although we have said for many, many years that the dollar should be abandoned. Foreign exchange reserves should have been removed from dollar-denominated instruments, from euro-denominated instruments to gold, they should have switched to their own currency and financial system, and developed their own settlements in national currencies with partners. We have been proposing all this since the noughties, when it was already clear what the global economic development was leading to. And only now, finally, everyone has seen the light.

“The Americans brainwashed the Ukrainians and turned 150-200 thousand people into a fighting machine that works without thinking”

— Judging by the heart-rending howl that comes from the camp of liberals, as well as the events in Ukraine, not everyone has seen the light yet.

— Yes, we are faced with the fact that the Americans have managed to fool the Ukrainian people so much in 8 years that the people who resist the Russian army, the so-called Armed Forces of Ukraine, look simply zombified. They are controlled like puppets. Not Zelensky commands the Ukrainian army, not even the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine and the General Staff, but the Pentagon. He commands very effectively from the point of view of fighting “to the last Ukrainian soldier”, because these zombie guys do not give up. But they are in an absolutely hopeless situation. All experts have already recognized that Russia won the military special operation, that Ukraine has no chance of resistance, that the entire military infrastructure has been destroyed… the APU can only surrender in order to minimize human losses. However, Ukrainian officers (and especially, of course, nationalists) act like externally controlled zombies-they follow instructions from the Pentagon, which are received on their personal computers and special tablets.

Moreover, the Americans command their puppets from the APU, breaking them into the appropriate units. Each unit is assigned a number, and each number is assigned tasks by artificial military intelligence every day. They really turned 150-200 thousand people into a fighting machine that works without thinking, only stupidly follows all their orders. For 8 years, they have managed to force a significant part of the youth of Ukraine not just to join the ranks against Russia, but by brainwashing them into their own weak-willed tools. Not just cannon fodder, but controlled cannon fodder.

Being in an absolutely hopeless situation, surrounded, deprived of any supplies at all, they still continue a senseless war, condemning themselves to death, and dragging the surrounding civilians with them to the grave. This is a good example of how American modern technologies work. We must understand that we are facing a very powerful force. You know, we have previously heard from Russian experts and politicians that the Ukrainians themselves will suffocate economically and then crawl to us and in general where Ukraine will go without us. After all, it will not be able to ensure the reproduction of the economy without our resources and cooperation with us. Indeed, Ukraine has entered a state of economic catastrophe, as we expected, as we explained to our Ukrainian colleagues. The Ukrainian Republic has become the poorest state in Europe, along with Moldova. Due to the fact that Ukraine has severed ties with Russia, its losses amount to more than $ 100 billion. Nevertheless, this did not prevent American and British political strategists and instructors from forming a 200-thousandth army of thugs and murderers who completely inadequately represent reality and are an obedient tool of American interests.

— Aren’t there equally obedient American puppets in Russia? Was it only Ukrainians who were zombified?

— Yes, and here it should be noted that almost the same thing is happening with the Central Bank, but only on other issues.

— Before we move on to the Central Bank, let me clarify. You said that you are working on introducing a new currency. And in what format and with what team?

— We have been doing this for quite a long time, as a group of scientists. 10 years ago, at the Astana Economic Forum, we presented the report “Towards Sustainable Growth through a Fair world economic order” with a draft transition to a new global financial and monetary system, where we proposed to reform the IMF system based on the so — called special drawing rights, and on the basis of the modified IMF system-to create a world settlement currency. This idea, by the way, aroused great interest at that time: our project was recognized as the best international economic project. But in a practical sense, none of the states represented by the official monetary authorities were interested in this project, although the publications of Nursultan Nazarbayev, who proposed a new currency, followed. I think he offered altyn.

– Altyn? It is interesting.

— Yes, his article on this topic was published even in Izvestia. But negotiations and political decisions were not reached, and to this day it is more of an expert proposal. But I am sure that the current situation forces us to create new payment and settlement instruments very quickly, because the dollar will be practically impossible to use, and the ruble cannot find stability due to the incompetent policy of the Central Bank, which, in fact, acts in the interests of international speculators.

Objectively, the ruble could become a reserve currency along with the yuan and the rupee. It would be possible to switch to a multi-currency system based on national currencies. But you still need some equivalent for pricing… We are currently working on the concept of the exchange space of the Eurasian Economic Union, where one of the tasks is to form new pricing criteria. That is, if we want metal prices to be formed not in London, but in Russia, just like oil prices, then this implies the emergence of some other currency, especially if we want to act not only within the Eurasian Economic Union, but in Eurasia in a broad sense, in the center of a new world economic order, to which I refer China, India, Indochina, Japan, Korea and Iran. These are big countries that all have their own strong national interests. After the current history of confiscation of dollar reserves, I don’t think any country will want to use another country’s currency as a reserve currency. So we need some new tool. And such a tool, from my point of view, can first become a certain synthetic settlement currency, which would be built as such an aggregated index.

– Can I get some examples? What is it?

— Well, let’s say the ecu-there was such an experience in the European Union. It was built as a basket of currencies. All countries that participate in the creation of a new settlement currency must be granted the right to have their national currency in this basket. And the common currency is formed as an index, as a weighted average component of these national currencies. Well, to this we must add, from my point of view, exchange-traded commodities: not only gold, but also oil, metal, grain, and water. A sort of commodity bundle, which, according to our estimates, should include about 20 products. They, in fact, form global price proportions and therefore must participate in the basket to form a new settlement currency. And we need an international treaty that will define the rules for the circulation of this currency and create an organization like the International Monetary fund. By the way, we proposed reforming the IMF 15 years ago, but now it is already obvious that the new monetary financial system will have to be built without the West. Perhaps one day Europe will join it and the United States will also be forced to recognize it. But it is still clear that we will have to build without them, for example, on the basis of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. However, these are just expert developments that we will submit to the official bodies for consideration in the coming month.

— And at the level of the government or at the level of the president?

— We will first send it to the departments that are responsible for these issues. We will hold discussions, develop some common understanding, and then reach the political level.

“The central Bank continues its policy of pandering to the enemy”

— In your telegram channel, you write that all that remains is to nationalize the Bank of Russia. Why hasn’t it been completed yet? Here, for example, there is a point of view that Elvira Nabiullina remains in her post as a screen, but she will no longer manage anything serious. Can you refute or confirm this?

— You know, I don’t want to do conspiracy theory.

“Is this a conspiracy theory?”

— Yes, we can talk about the American deep state in conspiracy terms. In this case, conspiracy theory is a very appropriate line of thought, because in America, behind the screen of presidents and congressmen, there are some deep forces — special services. But in our Country, everything is simple. We have a president, a head of state, who has built a vertical of power. We absolutely understand how the parliament and the judicial system are formed. Here, in general, no conspiracy theory can be applied. The same goes for the Central Bank. Let me remind you that, according to the law on the Central Bank, all its property is federal property. Therefore, the Central Bank is a state structure, there is no doubt about it.

— And they always said that he was separated, as if on the sidelines.

— The Board of Directors of the Central Bank is appointed by the State Duma on the recommendation of the President. I have worked for many years as its representative in the National Banking Council, which oversees the activities of the Central Bank. I can say that there is no doubt that the Central Bank is the state body regulating monetary circulation, and it is also the main financial regulator in the country.

But there are nuances. The Constitution stipulates that the Central Bank conducts its policy independently, that is, it is independent of the government. But this does not mean that it is independent of the state. This is a government agency. Our judicial system is also officially independent of the government. Therefore, being an independent body, the Central Bank is nevertheless formed as a state regulatory body and must fulfill the tasks that are necessary for the development of our economy. To do this, it is necessary to involve the Central Bank in strategic planning. The classic theory of monetary circulation stipulates that the main goal of the monetary authorities, i.e. the Central Bank, should be to create conditions for maximizing investment. This is exactly what the banking system should do — maximize investment. Because the more investment, the more production, the higher the technical level, the lower the costs and lower the inflation, the more stable the economy. Macroeconomic stabilization in the modern economy can be achieved only on the basis of accelerated scientific and technological progress. Attempts to target inflation (such a buzzword), which the Central Bank has been practically imitating for the past 10 years, by manipulating the key interest rate against the background of the freely floating ruble exchange rate, are short — sighted, primitive and counterproductive. These measures are usually recommended by the IMF for underdeveloped countries that do not know how to think themselves.

What is inflation targeting in practice? This is an extremely primitive and internally contradictory set of measures, the application of which drives the economy into a stagflationary trap. The Central Bank threw the ruble into free floating, which is absurd from the point of view of targeting inflation in an open economy, where the exchange rate directly affects prices. And we see how the devaluation of the ruble periodically accelerates prices. In addition, they have reduced monetary policy to only one absolutely primitive tool — manipulation of the key interest rate. But the key rate is the percentage at which the Central Bank issues money to the economy and withdraws money from the economy. Its attempts to suppress inflation by raising the interest rate cannot succeed in the modern economy, because the higher the interest rate, the less credit, the less investment, the lower the technical level and competitiveness. A decline in the latter leads to a devaluation of the ruble in 3-4 years, after they raise the interest rate ostensibly to fight inflation. By letting the ruble exchange rate float freely, they essentially left it at the mercy of currency speculators.

Americans really like this policy, so they strongly praise the leadership of our Central Bank and the Ministry of Finance. After all, what is important to them? So that everything is pegged to the dollar, so that the ruble is a “junk” currency that is unstable. And this is a paradox, because the number of foreign exchange reserves of the Russian Federation has recently been 3 times more than the money supply in rubles! This means that the Central Bank could stabilize the exchange rate at any level. But he didn’t.

And who are the speculators to whom the Central Bank actually threw the ruble to the mercy? The main speculators are American hedge funds, which actually form the ruble exchange rate by manipulating the market. And the Central Bank does not notice this, or rather, it does not seem to notice. To keep them in the foreign exchange market by raising the interest rate, the Central Bank kills credit and makes our economy dependent on foreign sources of credit, and the foreign exchange financial system-dependent on the interests of speculators. It is in whose interests the Central Bank is working, hiding behind buzzwords like “inflation targeting”, which has shamefully failed in recent years in terms of real price dynamics. So we have the weakest point of the entire national security system in general — this is the Central Bank. His leadership is overwhelmed by the enemy’s cognitive weapons, in other words, zombified by them. In fact, our monetary authorities are doing what the enemy needs.

By the way, I proved mathematically and chronologically that the first wave of sanctions was imposed against Russia only after the Central Bank prepared the ground for this, namely, it let the ruble exchange rate float freely and announced that it would raise the interest rate if inflation started in the country. As soon as the Central Bank adopted this strange policy, the Americans immediately imposed sanctions. Their speculators ensured the collapse of the ruble exchange rate, which caused an inflationary wave, and the Central Bank, on the instructions of the IMF, raised the interest rate, which completely paralyzed our economy. The total damage caused by this policy has already reached 50 trillion rubles of unproduced products and approximately 20 trillion rubles of undeveloped investments. Now we need to add to this the $ 300 billion invested in foreign assets that are currently frozen — that’s the damage.

Therefore, when we talk about nationalizing the Central Bank, we are not talking about formally nationalizing it (it is already nationalized), but about bringing it into a policy that is consistent with national interests. Now his policy is contrary to the national interests. And there is no conspiracy theory here. We can see in whose interests such a policy is being implemented. The central bank raised the interest rate to 20 percent, giving bankers a dominant position in the economy. Having the most expensive and scarce resource, money, they determine which enterprise will survive, and which enterprise will die, go bankrupt, and so on. Rising interest rates make the entire Russian economy a hostage to a handful of bankers. This is the first one. Second, the Central Bank’s management allowed another collapse of the ruble exchange rate and closed the currency exchange. As a result, today banks have become the main currency speculators: they buy foreign currency for about 90 rubles per dollar, and sell it for 125 rubles. The difference settles for them as a super-profit.

— But why does the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, in your opinion, pursue a policy in the interests of the enemy?

— As I said, he does this on the recommendation of the International Monetary Fund. But his interests are also shared by our large banks, which objectively like this policy, as well as our currency and financial structures, which are also involved in manipulating the ruble exchange rate. Therefore, an influential lobby is formed around this policy, which supports this policy based on its private interests. These interests run counter to the interests of the country, they are directly opposite to them. And if you look at what the Central Bank is doing today, I have no doubt that it is continuing its policy of pandering to the enemy. It undermines macroeconomic stability by allowing international speculators to manipulate the ruble exchange rate and does not control the currency position of banks that have become currency speculators, although the Central Bank could easily withdraw banks from the foreign exchange market by fixing their currency position, prohibiting banks from buying currency. And secondly, by raising the interest rate, the Central Bank actually killed investments in the development of the Russian economy, which are very much needed right now, primarily for import substitution and for restoring economic sovereignty, while our leadership says that we should not be afraid of sanctions, because they create conditions for economic growth, for import substitution…

Look, about a third of the EU’s imports have left our market. These are huge opportunities for import substitution. If we assume that our enterprises will start developing these markets, then we will develop at a rate of 15 percent per year. But this requires loans. Import substitution cannot occur without credits. We need loans to set up production facilities, develop new technologies, and load idle production facilities. We have long developed such a strategy of advanced development at the Academy of Sciences, and we are promoting it. But, unfortunately, the Central Bank’s crazy policy, from our point of view, has quite specific influential structures that like it and they support it. That is why this policy is so stable.

“You can stabilize the ruble in three days”

– Sergey Yuryevich, if this is not a conspiracy theory, then why does the Central Bank continue to pursue such a policy? Only based on the interests of lobbyists?

– To whom the war, and to whom the mother is native. Commercial banks make a 40% profit on currency speculation. Bought for 90 rubles per dollar-sold for 125. 35 rubles — nothing easy! As a result, we are experiencing inflation, imports are becoming more expensive, and everyone sees this crazy exchange rate. Prices for all goods are rising, but banks are making super-profits.

Once again, a very influential lobby has formed around this policy, and for many people to admit the failure of such a strategy means, in fact, admitting their incompetence and even sabotage. And speculators with large banks are quite influential structures in our country that influence decision-making.

— Well, what if the first person does not get this information, it is blocked?

— When I was an adviser, I brought this information to you.

— Did they listen to you?

— Yes, there were discussions, discussed at the economic council, then it was closed so as not to annoy the officials. I don’t want to comment on it now. We see today that if we do not change monetary policy, it will be impossible for us to survive in this hybrid war. We need to counter economic sanctions now with a serious increase in domestic production. There are production facilities for this, people, raw materials, brains — too, but there is no money. Right now, the simplest thing that the state can give people is money.

— What’s your feeling?” Is there any understanding at the top?

— I think that you need to address this question directly to them.

— But many people call you almost the No. 1 person in the current situation — a public figure who can save Russia.

– Thank you for this review. I try my best.

— I just want to understand: if there was no prophet in our Homeland before, is there one now? Is this a temporary situation with the Central Bank?

— It is so prolonged, I would say, for 30 years. If we carried out a competent monetary policy in accordance with the requirements of the new world economic order, the integrated system, we would develop like China — by 10 percent a year. There were such opportunities. And we have been practically marking time for these 30 years. So it’s not even a question of whether they are listening or not, you just need to look objectively and see how China and India are developing and how we are developing. What prevented us from developing in the same way?

Moreover, the management system of the new world economic order, which I describe in my books, is universal. It worked successfully in Japan until the Americans disrupted Japanese economic growth. And even in Ethiopia, where they also began to form this management model (and achieved growth several times). In other words, this universal management model of the modern economy, focused on the growth of public welfare through investment in a new technological order, needs to be implemented. At the same time, of course, the targeted use of money implies high responsibility. Throwing money from a helicopter is not our thing.

“Not our way.

— We are talking about a targeted credit issue based on modern digital tools with a strict control system focused on investment in new technologies. We know how to do this, how to minimize the human factor by introducing digital technologies, including the digital ruble. But this is not profitable for those who still adhere to the previous strategies. They made a cash cow out of Russia, and they sucked $ 100 billion out of it to offshore companies. But now the Americans have closed offshorization for us. There is a real chance, we must use it.

— What would you advise people to do? Now the main query in Internet search engines is where to invest money in the era of turbulence. What should people do?

— First of all, do not make any sudden movements, I would say so. In any case, what exactly is not necessary — to run for dollars or euros. Because we don’t know what will happen to these currencies next. If our system is disconnected from the western one, then our banks cannot effectively invest dollars and euros anywhere, except in currency speculation. But I hope that our authorities will still curb the foreign exchange market.

In this context, what the banks did, raising the interest rate on foreign currency deposits sharply, turned out to be a clear overkill, which spurred panic. I think the ruble will stabilize if, of course, speculators are removed from the foreign exchange market and the currency is sold only to importers and people who transfer money abroad within reasonable limits to relatives or are going on a business trip according to the regulations. Otherwise, block the channels of currency leakage. Then the currency inflow will return to normal.

You know, we have a very positive trade balance. Mandatory sale of 80% of foreign currency earnings has been introduced. If you sell this revenue on the stock exchange, the volume of currency will be more than importers need. We will have a surplus of currency. This means that the ruble exchange rate will strengthen, that is, it will return to the old indicators-80 or even 70 rubles per dollar. But until the Central Bank removes speculators from the market and allows commercial banks to become such, the ruble exchange rate will not stabilize. So, unfortunately, the monetary authorities have not yet come to their senses and have not begun to implement the correct policy of macroeconomic stabilization, and I can’t give any advice other than how to invest in gold if possible (especially since the government has removed VAT from gold). There are no other real assets and safe havens.

“So you want to buy gold?”

– Buy basic necessities. Or invest in real estate, in something reliable. As for investing in dollars and euros… They have already ceased to be a currency for us. This is no longer a currency, but some obligations of other countries that may or may not be fulfilled. So we need to look for other opportunities. But I would like to emphasize once again that with the right policy, we can very quickly stabilize the ruble and even restore its purchasing power.

— And in what perspective, after all?

— It can be done tomorrow, you know? The Primakov and Gerashchenko governments did it in one week.

— Can the government do that?”

“Of course it can. To do this, in general, you need to make two decisions: fix the currency position of commercial banks and introduce currency sale standards for non-trading operations, and keep the freely convertible foreign exchange market only for trading operations. That’s all. You can write this in 15 minutes and announce it within a day, or enter it within three days, and the ruble will stabilize.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov: Leaders of Russia management competition, Moscow, March 19, 2022

March 22, 2022

Ed Note:  This is an important document and answers most of the confused questions that I see come up in the comments still.  A careful read and even study is recommended – Amarynth


Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to questions during his meeting with finalists of the International Track as part of the Leaders of Russia management competition, Moscow, March 19, 2022

Dear friends,

I would like to greet you and express my gratitude for your continuing to invite me even though I chair the Supervisory Board. It is important for me to see you, listen to your questions and understand what worries you in this uneasy period.

This meeting takes place against the backdrop of events now occurring in Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly spoken at length about the origins of this crisis. I would like to briefly reiterate: this is not about Ukraine. This is the end-result of a policy that the West has carried out since the early 1990s. It was clear back then that Russia was not going to be docile and that it was going to have a say in international matters. This is not because Russia wants to be a bully. Russia has its history, its tradition, its own understanding of the history of its peoples and a vision on how it can ensure its security and interests in this world.

This became clear in the late 1990s-early 2000s. The West has repeatedly attempted to stall the independent and autonomous development of Russia. This is rather unfortunate. From the start of President Vladimir Putin’s “rule” in the early 2000s, we were open to the idea of working with the West in various ways, even in a form similar to that of an alliance, as the President has said.  Sadly, we were unable to do this. We repeatedly suggested that we should conclude treaties and base our security on equal rights, rejecting the idea of strengthening one’s security at the expense of another.

Neither were we able to promote economic cooperation. The European Union, which back then showed some signs of independent decision-making, has now devolved toward being completely dependent on the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the US. The story of Nord Stream 2 was the highlight of this change. Even Germany, which defended its interests in the project to the very end, was persuaded that the “project was not in its interests.” Germany and its people were told what their interests were by people on the other side of the Atlantic. Many other international areas were blocked despite our commitment to close cooperation on an equal basis.

The West did not want equal cooperation and, as we can now see, has kept true to the “will and testament” of Zbigniew Brzezinski who said that Ukraine should not be allowed to side with Russia. With Ukraine, Russia is a great power, while without Ukraine, it is a regional player. We understand that this is a mere exaggeration. But it fits nevertheless the philosophy and the mentality of western leaders. No effort was spared to turn Ukraine into an instrument to contain Russia. Into an “anti-Russia,” as President Putin said. This is neither a metaphor nor an exaggeration.

What has been happening all these years is the significant accumulation of physical, military, ideological, and philosophical threats to the security of the Russian Federation. The militarisation of Ukraine, which was injected with weapons (including assault weapons) worth many billions of dollars over these years, was accompanied by the Nazification of all spheres of society and the eradication of the Russian language. You know the laws that were passed there concerning education, the state language, and the indigenous peoples of Ukraine that made no mention of Russians. It was not only the language that was being edited out, but simply everything Russian. They banned the mass media, which broadcast from Russia and transmitted in Ukraine. Three Ukrainian television channels that were considered disloyal to the current government were shut down. Neo-Nazi battalions with insignia of Hitler’s SS divisions held marches; torchlight processions took place with a presidential regiment assigned as an official escort; fighters were trained in camps by instructor programmes from the US and other Western countries. All this was done with the connivance of civilised Europe and with the support of the Ukrainian government.

To my great regret and shame, President Zelensky has been asking how he could be a Nazi if he has Jewish roots. He said this on the exact day when Ukraine demonstratively withdrew from the Agreement on Perpetuating the Memory of the Courage and Heroism of the Peoples of the CIS Countries During the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. When he personally patronises the tendencies I have mentioned, it is difficult to take the policy of the Ukrainian leadership seriously. Just as in the early stages of his presidency, and even earlier, when he was a stage and soap opera star, he assured me in every possible way that it was unthinkable for him that the Russian language could be infringed upon. So here we are: life demonstrates what a person’s word is worth.

These accumulated tendencies took on a new form following the coup d’etat in February 2014. Despite the guarantees of the EU countries — France, Germany and Poland — that were part of the agreement between the opposition and the then-President of Ukraine, they tore up that agreement the morning after, disregarded the guarantees, humiliated the nations above, and the EU as a whole, before announcing their new regime. In our conversations with our western partners, including the Germans and the French, we have been asking them how they could allow this to happen.  We kept reiterating, you provided guarantees to this agreement. They say this happened because Yanukovich left Kiev. Yes he did, but he left for Kharkov to take part in his party’s congress. Yes, he faced a number of issues and did not enjoy broad support, but he never fled. Still, this is not about Yanukovich.

The first point of the Agreement read that the Government of National Accord was to be established as an interim stage for early presidential elections. Most likely, the then president would not have won, and everyone knew this. All the opposition had to do was to wait and fulfil what it agreed to.  Instead, they immediately ran back to “Maidan.” They seized the government building and said, “congratulate us, we have created a government of winners.” And this is how their instincts were immediately manifested. Winners. First of all, they demanded that the Verkhovna Rada abolish any privileges granted to the Russian language. This, despite the fact that the Russian language was and is still enshrined in the Constitution of Ukraine, which declares that the state must guarantee the rights of Russians and other ethnic minorities. They demanded that Russians get out of Crimea because they would never think like Ukrainians, speak Ukrainian or honour Ukraine’s heroes Bandera and Shukhevich. They sent combat battalions and “friendship trains” to that peninsula to storm the Supreme Council building. At this point, Crimea rebelled, and Donbass refused to accept the coup d’état and instead asked to be left alone. But they were not left alone. Donbass didn’t attack anyone. But they were declared terrorists and an anti-terrorist operation was launched, with troops being sent in, with nearly all of the West applauding the move. That’s when it became evident exactly what plans were in store for the future role of Ukraine.

The massacre was stopped with enormous effort and through Russia’s active participation. The Minsk agreements were signed. You know what happened to them next. For seven long years, we tried to appeal to the conscience of those who signed the agreements, above all, to France and Germany. The end was tragic.

We held several summits and meetings at other levels, and Ukraine, either under Poroshenko or under Zelensky, just did not want to comply with the agreements. First of all, they refused to open a direct dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk. We asked the Germans and the French why they would not make their proteges at least sit down at the negotiation table. The answer was that they did not think that the republics were independent, and that it was all Russia’s fault. End of conversation. Contrary to its commitments under the Minsk agreements, late last year and early this year, Kiev began to build up its forces along the line of contact up to 120,000 troops. Contrary to the ceasefire agreements that had been signed and violated many times prior, they dramatically increased their heavy shelling, always targeting residential areas. The same has been happening for all these eight years, with varying degrees of intensity, amid complete silence from all the international “human rights” organisatons and Western “civilised democracies.”

Shelling intensified at the start of this year. We received information that Ukraine wanted to implement their Plan B, which they had long threatened, to take the regions by force. This was made worse by the West’s stonewalling of Russia’s initiative to reach an agreement on an equal and indivisible security architecture in Europe. President Vladimir Putin put forward this initiative in November 2021, we drafted the necessary documents and relayed them to the US and NATO in December 2021. They responded that they were willing to negotiate certain issues, including where missiles could not be deployed, but that Ukraine and NATO was none of our business. Ukraine was said to have reserved its right to appeal to join NATO, which would then deliberate whether to admit it, and all this without asking anyone else (likely ending up granting Ukraine’s membership). This was the essence of what they told us.

This is why when Ukraine commenced its shelling, signifying a clear sign of preparations to launch a military offensive in Donbass, we had no other choice but to protect Russian people in Ukraine. We recognised the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics. President Vladimir Putin responded to their request by ordering the launch of a special military operation. I am certain that you are following the events and know that the operation has brought to light our worst fears about Ukraine’s military plans and has helped us derail them.

You know that facts have been uncovered of a dangerous bioweapons programme that the Pentagon has been carrying out in many cities of Ukraine. Now that Russia’s armed forces have acquired access to these documents, the US has been trying to cover its tracks. We will be fighting for the truth to come out. This bioweapons research is not limited to Ukraine and is being conducted in over 300 laboratories in various countries, most of them located in former Soviet Union nations along the borders of Russia and the People’s Republic of China.

This was not our choice. We saw how the West’s attitude was communicating one simple truth – if you were a Russophobe; if you were set on eradicating Katsaps and Moskals (a quote from statements made by Ukrainian politicians); if you were to say that anyone who considers themselves Russian and is a citizen of Ukraine should get out for the sake of their future and their children, (as President Vladimir Zelensky said in September 2021); if you obediently fulfill Western bidding so as to constantly irritate, unnerve and unbalance Russia, then you have the universal green light to do anything.

The unprecedentedly hysterical reaction in the West to our military operation, the way they are encouraging and indulging everything anti-Russia and anti-Russian is sad news indeed. I regularly read about the ill treatment that Russian people face in other countries, including citizens of those countries who are of Russian origin. It appears anyone can demand that these people be persecuted in the West now, even on social media. I cannot wrap my mind around this.

But this all proves one thing: the anti-Russia project has failed. President Vladimir Putin has listed the goals of the operation, and the first on the list is to ensure the safety of people in Donbass, and the second one, to eliminate the growing threats to the Russian Federation from the militarisation and Nazification of Ukraine. When they realised that our policy line had helped to thwart their plans, they literally went ballistic.

And yet, we have always supported diplomatic solutions to any problems. Over the course of hostilities, President Vladimir Zelensky proposed negotiations. President Vladimir Putin agreed. The talks are underway, although the Ukrainian delegation did start by, as we say, simply going through the motions. Then dialogue actually began. Even so, there is always the feeling that the Ukrainian delegation is manipulated by the West (most likely, the Americans), and is not allowed to agree to our demands, which are bare minimum, in my opinion. The process is underway.

We continue to be open to cooperation with any countries, including Western ones. However, given how the West has behaved, we are not going to propose any initiatives. Let’s see how they will get themselves out of this self-imposed impasse. They have got themselves into this impasse along with their “values,” “free market principles,” rights to private property and the presumption of innocence. They have trampled on all of this.

Many countries are already beginning to rack their brains in search of ways to slowly “creep away” from the dollar in international settlements. Look what has happened. What if they do not like something else tomorrow? The United States is sending its diplomats around the world, its ambassadors in every country have orders to demand that these countries end cooperation with Russia under the threat of sanctions. We would understand if they did this with small countries. But when such ultimatums and demands are given to China, India, Egypt, or Turkey, it looks like our American colleagues have totally lost touch with reality, or their superhuman complex has overwhelmed their sense of normalcy. We have seen such complexes in human history, and we do know about this.

I do not want to be the only speaker, though. I would like to hear from you. What questions do you have, what are you interested in?

Question: For those who do not know, Riga was part of the Russian Empire longer than Sevastopol was. How long will Russian people need a visa to travel to Russia? Is it possible to issue maybe a card or something for compatriots from the Baltics and European countries, so that they could travel or work in Russia? There is a residence permit, but if you leave for more than six months you lose your residency. In the current situation, when Russophobia is on the rise, this would be especially relevant.

The mistakes made by the public, the “soft power,” then have to be corrected by the army (as we see in Ukraine). Perhaps in countries where Russia faces direct opposition it would make sense to work not through Russian Community Councils (which quickly find themselves under the control of local authorities), but rather to decentralise work. For example, Americans have 20 different funds. You can be anything – green, blue, light blue, whatever, but if you are anti-Russia, this opens all the necessary doors.

Sergey Lavrov: I agree with you about visas. This is an old problem. We have a complicated bureaucracy. This discussion between liberals and conservatives has been going on since the late 1990s and early 2000s. The liberals believed we needed to remove as many barriers as possible so that people with Russian roots, who speak Russian and are involved in cultural and humanitarian events, enjoyed a preferential entry regime. The debate was quite lively when the law on compatriots was adopted, and they discussed the “compatriot card” option. This was one of the most important matters discussed. However, no agreement was reached, including for legal reasons – because it is not a passport or a half-passport. For example, Poland issues Pole’s Cards. These can essentially be used as passports. There are other instruments to liaise with their diasporas in Western countries (with ethnic Hungarians, Romanians, Bulgarians), and in the Middle East, too. Even in Syria, there is an entire ministry (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates). We are currently working on additional steps that we can take in this direction.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin has appointed me to head the Commission for International Cooperation and Support for Compatriots Abroad. The commission will meet at the end of March. This question will be one of the main ones on the agenda. We will discuss it in the context of a broader approach called repatriation. I believe that repatriation must be legally formalised with all the necessary formalities and the with all legal norms observed. This must be done in order to dramatically facilitate the procedure for those who identify as Russians to relocate or come to stay in Russia. We will try to consider your question as well as part of this approach.

As for the soft power, the Russian Community Councils and the American method – there must be some school of thought that prompts such action. As we promoted the movement of compatriots, we sought to make their actions transparent, so that they did not arouse any suspicion of being involved in underground activities. Unfortunately, that was all in vain. All this transparency backfired. What they are doing with the management of the Russian Community Council in the United States is pure McCarthyism. Its leaders had to return to Russia, otherwise the FBI threatened to imprison them for a long time because they promoted projects between compatriots who maintained cultural and humanitarian ties with Russia. Recall how the Americans treated Maria Butina. She worked openly and completely freely in the United States, promoting joint projects. In the US, all NGOs for the most part explicitly declare they are supported and funded by the Agency for International Development. Other Western countries have many projects that prefer to keep this information to themselves. I wouldn’t want us to act like this. First, it would be dangerous for the people concerned. Secondly, these are the methods of the intelligence services, not soft power methods. On the other hand, American soft power relies heavily on the CIA and other special services.

We will think of ways to support our compatriots in situations where a true witch hunt has been unleashed against them. I think more flexible forms of support could be implemented, including the Foundation for Supporting and Protecting the Rights of Compatriots Living Abroad. The essence of this is the provision of legal assistance to those who find themselves in a difficult situation. There is also the Alexander Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund. We will think about some additional formats, naturally, fully legitimate ones.

Russia needs to toughen its policy with regard to shadow agencies engaged in things that do not coincide with their charter and other documents. Thank you for showing such an interest. We will certainly try to take this into account.

Question: What contribution do you think representatives of other states can make to the development of international relations with the Russian Federation?

Sergey Lavrov: We will support any public initiatives aimed at developing cooperation in the post-Soviet space. There are many forms for interaction in the CIS, in the CSTO, and in the EAEU, which are of interest to public movements and organisations and that can be used to organise events.

I sincerely would not want to give you any specific ideas here. You know better. You have a feel for what life is like in your country, and how it is affected by relations with Russia on the official, investment, and trade tracks.

As for the Russian Community Councils, in some countries our compatriots are beginning to create alternative councils. It is possible that people are just being competitive, which is only natural, but if you have an interest in doing something on the ground, we will only welcome this. If you need some advice, I am available to listen to your ideas and see how we can support them together with our Kazakhstani colleagues.

Question: I have a proposal, not a question. We have set up a pressure group on this track, and we have already drafted our own proposals. We are ready to help promote Russian culture and the Russian language in Germany, the Baltics and other countries. We would like to become independent analysts and experts and to develop culture, the Russian language and to support compatriots and foreigners who love the Russian language, and who aspire to culture. We would be happy to take part in this process.

Sergey Lavrov: That’s wonderful. Could you please leave your proposals and contacts with the organisers? The Foreign Ministry exercises various functions within the framework of the Government Commission for Compatriots Abroad, and I head this Commission. Our Ministry is also the main body responsible for the implementation of a new federal targeted programme to promote international cooperation. This is what soft power is all about. We also have a programme for supporting the Russian language abroad. In effect, opportunities still exist for the kind of projects you mentioned. I look forward to reading your letter.

Question: As of late, many Western activists, including Arnold Schwarzenegger, have addressed the people of Russia. If you were able to address all the peoples of the world in the West, the East and in Latin America, what would you tell them to make sure they hear you?

Sergey Lavrov: I would tell them that all peoples should be true to themselves, and that they should not abandon their traditions, history, aspirations and world outlook.

Getting back to Ukraine, the Americans are gloating over this situation and rubbing their hands with glee. In all, 140 countries voted against Russia at the UN General Assembly. We know how these countries reached this decision: US ambassadors have been shuttling from capital to capital and demanding that even the great powers comply with their demands, and they don’t shy away from speaking about it in public. They either want to offend others, or they have completely lost all sense of proportion, while comprehending their own superiority. However, out these 140 countries voting on US orders, not one imposed any sanctions except the West. An overwhelming majority of countries did not impose any sanctions on Russia. It appears that, by voting, some of them wanted to minimise damage, but they don’t want to shoot themselves in the foot, and they will continue to develop their economy. Many independent leaders are saying openly that they don’t want to fulfil US instructions to their own detriment.

So, people of the world, be true to yourselves.

Question: What should the West do now that events have dramatically escalated to move things back towards a realm of peace, tranquility, kindness and cooperation?

Sergey Lavrov: The West should start minding its own business and stop lecturing others. Because right now, all we hear is “Russia must..” Why must we do anything, and how have we so upset the West? I really do not understand. They’ve dragged out our security guarantees initiatives. They told us not to worry about NATO expansion because it does not threaten our security. Why do they get to decide what we need for our security? This is our business. They do not allow us anywhere near discussions of their own security. We are constantly reminded that NATO is a defensive organisation. First, this defensive alliance bombed Yugoslavia. We only recently recalled how in 1998 Joe Biden was so proud that he personally contributed to the decision to bomb Belgrade, and bridges over the Drina River. It was fascinating to hear this from someone who claims Russia is led by war criminals.

NATO also acted in Iraq without a UN Security Council resolution. In Libya, it did have a resolution, but it only covered establishing a no-fly zone, so that Muammar Gadaffi’s aircraft could not take off from their airfields. They didn’t. On the other hand, NATO bombed all the army positions from the air, which the UN Security Council did not warrant, and brutally killed Muammar Gadaffi without trial or investigation. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton went live on air to celebrate the event.

Strategically speaking, there was indeed a collective defence alliance when the Berlin Wall and the Warsaw Pact existed.  It was clear where the line of defence was then. When the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact ceased to exist, NATO foreswore not to expand to the East, but began to do just that. We have seen five waves of expansion by now, contrary to its assurances. And each time, the imaginary Berlin Wall was moved further east. The alliance assumed the right to determine the boundary of its line of defence. Now Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has declared that NATO must bear global responsibility and is obliged to ensure security in the Indo-Pacific region. It is their name for the Asia-Pacific region. So, NATO is ready to “defend itself” in the South China Sea now. They are building defence lines against China now, so China, too, needs to be on the alert for that. A really unusual type of defence.

As for the Indo-Pacific region, which we have always called the Asia-Pacific region, there is the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) there, as well as mechanisms created around the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). ASEAN has a dozen partners. We participate in holding the East Asia Summit, the ASEAN Security Forum, and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus, a platform for ASEAN and its twelve partners which include China, Russia, the West (including Australia) and India – all the key players. Those formats work on the basis of consensus. This does not suit the Americans though, because to pursue their policy to contain China, they need an anti-China mechanism. But no platform where China is a member can produce such a result. They proclaimed the Indo-Pacific strategies and created Quad – a group of four nations including the United States, Australia, Japan, and they also lured India into this group. Our Indian friends are well aware of what we are talking about. They said they would participate in this only in the context of economic and infrastructure projects, but not military ones. So, because they needed to build up the military component, they created a parallel format, AUKUS, which included Australia, the UK and the United States. Now they want to expand it by adding Japan and South Korea, and even some ASEAN countries. This will lead to the collapse of the ASEAN ten.

When the Indo-Pacific concept was announced, we asked what was wrong with the Asia-Pacific label. We were told it mixed two different things because Asia did not refer to an ocean, but the Pacific did. Hence the Indian Ocean and Asia. We asked, if this includes the Indian Ocean, does this mean the whole of East Africa will be involved in this cooperation? They said no. That region had too many problems they did not want to deal with as they had enough on their plate. Is the Persian Gulf also part of the Indian Ocean? They said no to that too, disowning it. This makes it clear that the Indo part has been included with the sole purpose of cozying up to India and trying even harder to turn it into an anti-China player.

Russian President Vladimir Putin visited India in early February 2022. I spoke frankly with them. Our Indian friends understand everything perfectly and will never be open to such “cooperation” or play someone else’s games. India is a great country. Making such provocations against great powers is simply disrespectful.

Back to our discussion – we tried to negotiate with the West up to the last minute. But relations with the EU were destroyed back in 2014. All mechanisms, and there were plenty of them: biannual summits, annual meetings of the Russian Government and the European Commission, four common spaces being developed under four roadmaps, 20 industry-based dialogues – all that was derailed simply because the people in Crimea, faced with a radical neo-Nazi threat, voted for reunification with Russia.

Our Western colleagues do have this curious approach towards politics – when considering any problem in international politics, they cut off periods of time that are not favourable to them. When we discussed Ukraine with them, they said that we “annexed” Crimea. Wait, but what happened before that? They failed to make the opposition do what they themselves had signed on to. The opposition violated all guarantees and, contrary to the agreements, carried out a coup d’état and proclaimed an openly anti-Russia policy line. They began trying to suppress everything Russian. But Westerners called it “the price one has to pay for democratic processes.” They could not even say the word coup.

Last autumn, I asked the Germans and the French, how is this so? It is the Minsk Agreements we are talking about. Why are you so stubborn about this annexation part? It all started then. “This is the price one has to pay for democratic processes.” You see, this is their approach – they ignore what is unfavourable to them. They just single out one of the symptoms and begin to build their entire policy on it.

Question: Politics is about forestalling. I would like to take a look into the future. How do you, as an absolute professional in this area, see the future of the Slavic peoples’ coexistence in this space? I am sure that everything will be well. However, the forms of such coexistence may differ. What is your opinion of its stability and preferred forms?

Sergey Lavrov: We should follow the lines dictated by life itself. We have reached an extremely important milestone. I am referring to the 28 union programmes. They are described as roadmaps. These programmes are being actively and efficiently transformed into normative acts. We need to have many of them. The majority have already been drafted, and the rest are at the advanced stage of preparation. They will ensure not just our rapprochement but the creation of a common economic foundation, which is necessary to level out rights in absolutely all spheres, including trade, investment, the implementation of economic projects, access to state orders and more.

As for the political superstructure, we have the union parliament, the union cabinet of ministers, and the Supreme State Council chaired by our presidents. These bodies will deal with economic business development to see if our political bodies should be additionally adjusted to our superstructure. I am sure that we will rely on the opinion of our peoples, who regard each other as fraternal and truly close peoples.

Question: I have a question about soft power. School education concerns not only the external but also the internal contours. For the past seven years, I have been closely monitoring developments in children’s culture, which can be described as extremely pro-liberal. Today we need to overhaul the cultural space here and to quickly launch the introduction of our cultural codes abroad. Here is a simple example: the animated television series Masha and the Bear has done more in the external contour to improve Russia’s image abroad than many official programmes. Are there any programmes, or plans to launch programmes to change the cultural code both in the internal and the external contours? I have a proposal, which I would like to formulate and to submit through this event’s organisers tomorrow, if I may.

Sergey Lavrov: Yes, of course. I would like to urge everyone, including those who don’t have formulated proposals, to share their ideas with us. We will discuss all of them.

You have touched upon a very important issue. I am not directly involved in these efforts, but we have always been speaking about the need to start promoting our culture from the cradle, primarily in Russia. There is too much external influence now, and internal influence is not always effective in shaping the right worldview in our children. I am not talking about brainwashing people. But we need to prevent the brainwashing of our children by other forces. This is the issue. Children’s access to information must not be limited to one source. Do please submit your ideas. We will look at them together with the Culture Ministry.

Question: A colleague has mentioned the issue of visas. The lady from Kazakhstan has said what we should do abroad and how we should do it. Can you say what Russia’s priority is: to collect as many compatriots as possible in Russia, or to form a cordon or a barrier of compatriots outside the country?

Sergey Lavrov: I know that some political analysts are pondering this idea. I believe that people have a free choice. We must create the right conditions for those who want to return. I have already mentioned repatriation today. We will certainly deal with this matter at the United Russia’s Commission [on International Cooperation and Support for Compatriots Living Abroad]. I will do my best to help draft a law on this matter.

As for the interests of those who want to live where they are living, we must work with the authorities of their countries of residence to prevent discrimination against Russians, Russian education, [Russian] media outlets, etc. It will be more difficult to do this now, because our Western colleagues are encouraging Russophobia in all areas. Regrettably, they are trying to set the Georgian people on this track. When they recklessly adopted these horrible, inhuman sanctions, leaving 200,000 people outside the national territory, preventing them from using national airlinesand prohibiting Western air carriers from bringing these people home, the Prime Minister of Georgia announced that they were ready, in view of that humanitarian situation, to allow Georgian airlines to bring Russians from Europe and the EU closer to their home country. You remember how fiercely he was attacked for this. It was an elementary human desire to help people in difficult circumstances. If you have any complaints about your authorities, please write to us.

Question: There are no complaints. We will submit the proposals regarding possible support for our compatriots in foreign countries.

Sergey Lavrov: We have a channel for communication. We are interested in normal relations with our Georgian colleagues.

Question: All states are playing the same game: the author has trump cards and a support team in case there are dissenters. I am referring to the UK and the United States. This will go on until one of the parties ceases to exist. Is it not high time Russia started its own game within the framework of the Eurasian continent and friendly countries to promote peace, justice and security? Given its nuclear arsenal, Russia could guarantee the security of states (where it has been confirmed – Syria, Ukraine) for countries that currently depend to some or other extent on big, major players so that they can feel they are also involved.

Sergey Lavrov: I wouldn’t call it a game in the sense implied by Zbigniew Brzezinski’s terms “great Game” and “grand chessboard”. We proceed from the premise that our friends are people, states, and political parties which are our equals. Unlike the Western organisations, where there is little democracy. They invented consensus, but in NATO and the EU this consensus is a sham.

They adopted sanctions in instalments even before the current stage in the development of our geopolitical space (there has been a series of sanctions for no reason at all since 2014).   Everything seems to have happened – Crimea, Donbass, the Minsk agreements… But every six months, they imposed new sanctions. Many of my European counterparts tell me confidentially: we understand that this is stupidity and a dead end, but we have consensus. I told one of them: a consensus means that a decision is not taken if there is even one “nay” vote.     If you object, say so! This is a case of collective responsibility. Everyone says: I am against it, but all of them want a consensus.  This consensus is shaped by an aggressive, Russophobic minority, primarily by the Baltic states (to my great regret), Poland, and recently Denmark.

Today, it is a sign of good manners for them to demonstrate that you are more of a Russophobe than your neighbours. In NATO, it is the United States that rules the roost. The EU is being dominated by the alliance. The neutral countries, which are not NATO members – Sweden, Finland, and Austria – are being drawn into cooperation under the cloak of “collective mobility.” This means that the neutral countries will allow NATO to use their roads and territories when it needs to move its military infrastructure east. This is being palmed off as NATO-EU partnership. I have mentioned Nord Stream 2 as an example. There is no longer any independence in Europe. They were just told: Stop taking care of your energy security on the terms that are beneficial to you; we will guarantee your security at a much higher price, but we will be in chips. President of France Emmanuel Macron is the only politician who continues to focus on strategic autonomy. Germany has resigned itself to the fact that they will have no such autonomy. There is no diktat of this sort in our country.

The difficulties arising in the work of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO), the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) are contingent on and explained by the democratic nature of these organisations rather than their weakness. They decide all matters by consensus and nothing can be imposed on them from outside. We have allied relations with Syria and good relations with Iran. I don’t think it will be a good idea to “knock together” a bloc. This will tie everyone’s hands, if we look at the situation pragmatically. It is better to have allied relations or an unprecedentedly close relationship of the kind we have with China. Our leaders said in one of the [bilateral] documents: relations have reached an unprecedentedly high level that in some respects even exceeds the traditional allied relations. That is absolutely true and hence we have multivariance.

The Russian Empire was created as follows. There was no melting-pot like in the United States. They have melted everyone into Americans. Generally, all Americans favour human rights. Practically all the states have an equal balance of rights. In the Russian Empire, as ethnic groups joined, Moscow and St Petersburg always sought to have regard for their unique identities and made efforts to preserve their cultures and religions. Multivariance in relations with foreign partners seems more effective and enables greater freedom of action in cases where such actions will be necessary.

Question: I am a citizen of the People’s Republic of China. I was born and grew up there. For many years, I have been involved in humanitarian cooperation (education) between China and Russia. I believe that Russia and China are two great powers that enjoy historical and cultural affinity. What areas of cooperation between China and Russia have best prospects?

Sergey Lavrov: It would be impossible to list the promising areas of cooperation between Russia and China. It would need an entire session of its own. Through Moscow and Beijing, we disseminate detailed information on what our two countries are working on together. Currently, this cooperation will be growing stronger. At a time when the West is most flagrantly eroding the entire bedrock that the international system stands on, we as two great powers have to think about our future in this world.

For the first time in many years, China has been declared the main target, previously it was Russia. Now we are targets on rotation. At this stage, their proclaimed goal is to deal with Russia and then go after China. When we communicated with the Western countries during less turbulent times, we asked them why they were allowing the American course against China to be built up and why was everyone being dragged into it? What did China do? “China is a threat.” What makes China a threat? “They are starting to defeat everybody economically.”

If you look at the beginning of China’s economic elevation, China started by simply accepting the rules of the game, which had been essentially created by the West, led by Americans. These rules included the international monetary system, the international trade system, the Bretton Woods System and the World Trade Organisation (WTO). China started playing by their rules and is now outplaying them on their home field by their rules. Is it a reason for changing the rules? It appears so. Who is proposing to reform the WTO? The West. Because the World Trade Organisation in its current form is providing rules that are fair. Therefore, if we just forget about the situation in Ukraine and the sanctions for a minute, the actions of the West confirm it is not reliable, either as a part of the world that generated the major reserve currencies, or as economic partners or as countries to store gold and currency reserves. We have things to work on. Our leaders and other members of the Government, foreign affairs agencies are working on this extensively as part of our traditionally regular dialogue.

Question: Russia is conducting an operation in Ukraine. It is not a secret that Russia is building a Greater Eurasia. Can you clue us in a little: is Sergey Shoigu going to stop at the border with Poland? Or are we going into Transnistria and Moldova? What is the plan? Are we going to unite further?

Sergey Lavrov: We declared our goals. They are fully legitimate and clear: to protect the people of Donbass (with which we are now allies) that are subject to blatant aggression. For these purposes and based on our treaties, we applied Article 51 of the UN Charter on collective self-defence. Another goal is to eliminate any threats to Russian security posed by the militarisation of Ukraine that is carried out by the West. There must be no strike weapons in the country or threats in the form of Ukraine’s nazification, for obvious reasons. The aggressive spirit of the Ukrainian elite has been consciously created to be like this by Western instructors throughout these decades. They trained neo-Nazi battalions, showing them how to conduct aggressive combat operations, etc. We have no other goals beyond these.

Alternatively, the other side may come up with some curious goals. For example, Prime Minister of Poland Mateusz Morawiecki has proposed an idea that will be discussed soon, which is to send NATO peacekeeping forces to Ukraine. It is possible that, should this decision be made all of a sudden, it will entail that Polish personnel will make up the core of these peacekeeping forces and they will take control over Western Ukraine, including the major city of Lvov, to remain there for a prolonged period of time. It appears to me that this is the plan.

I believe this initiative is doublespeak. NATO will realise they should be reasonable and realistic.

Question: It is now clear to everyone that the world will never be the same again. There is much talk these days about the new global architecture and the fact that its foundations are now being laid. I do agree with the notion that we have no need of a world without Russia. But what kind of a world do we want to build? What place will Russia and the Union State have in the new international order?

Sergey Lavrov: What we want is an equitable world, free from war, aggressive projects or attempts to pitch one country against another. Equitable is also the way we see Russia’s place in the world. Similarly, the Union State must enjoy all the benefits of this ideal world as you have described it.

What we want is to discuss how to live on this planet in the future. Too many problems have been piling up, and the existing institutions have been unable to resolve them. This is the gist of the initiative President of Russia Vladimir Putin put forward two years ago to convene a summit of UN Security Council permanent members. Almost everyone supported it but the West will now drag its feet. There is a preliminary agenda. We have coordinated it with our Chinese friends, while the others are reviewing it. But now everything will be put on hold. This is not about the P5 reimagining a “new Yalta,” as some claim. Under the UN Charter, the five permanent members of the UN Security Council have primary responsibility for maintaining international peace.

When we express the need for more democracy in international relations, this does not mean cancelling the UN Charter. It means stopping violations of the UN Charter. The sovereign equality of states and the requirement to respect territorial integrity and the right of nations to self-determination – it is all in the Charter. Had all its provisions been respected, this would have ensured peace and cooperation in good faith among all countries. However, the West manipulates them for its own benefit.

For example, we stand accused of violating Ukraine’s territorial integrity, starting with Crimea and Donbass. Crimea held a referendum. Everyone knew that this was an open, honest process when people expressed their will. The Americans know this too. Let me share a secret with you (I hope that no one will get cross at me). In April 2014, after the Crimea referendum then US Secretary of State John Kerry told me that they understood that this was an honest vote. However, he noted that we fast-tracked it by announcing the referendum and holding the vote in a matter of just one week. I explained to him that the Ukrainian radicals posed a direct threat at the time. All the formalities had to be completed in order to protect this territory. He suggested that we hold another referendum in the summer or autumn, announce it about two months in advance and invite foreign observers. The result would be all the same but they would be there to “bless” and verify it. This was not a matter of substance, since everyone understood where it was all heading, but about creating a favourable image for the outside world in order to be able to report that the people of Crimea cast their ballots in a referendum, while the Western “comrades” verified the results.

As for sovereignty and territorial integrity, ever since the founding of the UN in 1945, it has been debating whether sovereignty takes priority over the right to self-determination or vice-versa. A negotiating process was put into motion, paving the way for the adoption by consensus in 1970 of a Declaration on Principles of International Law Concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States under the UN Charter. This is a lengthy document with an entire section on the relationship between sovereignty, territorial integrity and the right to self-determination. It says that everyone must respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states whose governments ensure the right to self-determination and represent the people living in their territory. Has the Ukrainian leadership ensured Crimea’s right to self-determination? All they did was curtail Crimea’s rights within Ukraine. Did the Petr Poroshenko regime or the current leadership represent all the people of Ukraine, including Crimea, as they pretend? No. They did not represent Donbass either. They have been ignoring all these principles.

According to the principle of indivisible security, everyone is free to choose alliances but no one can reinforce their security at the expense of others. They say that only alliances matter and nothing else. However, when it suits their interests, the principle of self-determination comes to the fore, relegating Yugoslavia’s territorial integrity into the background, as happened with Kosovo. Its self-determination took place without a referendum. They engineered the creation of a parliamentary structure of sorts, and it voted on the matter. Serbia took the case to the International Court, which issued a curious ruling, saying that consent from the central government was not required for a declaration of independence. President of Russia Vladimir Putin has quoted this landmark ruling by the International Court on multiple occasions.

Question: The West is planning to replace Russian oil and gas in the coming years. What is Russia’s interest in participating in the Iran-US nuclear deal? Iran will have an opportunity to increase oil production and replace the Russian market in Europe. How ready are our Venezuelan partners for a deal with the Americans to replace Russian oil?

Sergey Lavrov: We never betray our friends in politics. Venezuela is our friend. Iran is a close state. Unlike the Americans, we do not act only out of selfish interests. If they need to “teach the Russians a lesson,” then it’s okay to agree with the regime in Caracas (as they called it). The United States would rather restore the programme with Iran, just to punish Russia. This reflects problems not so much with international institutions as with “liberal democracy.” As it turns out, it is not “liberal” at all, and it is not “democracy” at all.

When the leading country of the world (which the United States is) solves the problem of global, planetary importance, primarily on the basis of its own domestic interests, which are determined by two-year electoral cycles, then the biggest problems are sacrificed to these electoral cycles. What we can see now in US actions is a desire to prove that a Democratic president and administration are doing well and feel strong enough ahead of the November congressional elections. China does not understand this. What is two years? Nothing. Although the Chinese say that “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step,” they see the horizon of that great journey. Here, in addition to the US desire to command everything, there are no more horizons. They will act the way they need to today.

It has been noted that the Americans are running around with the issue of oil and gas, turning to Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar. All these countries, like Venezuela and Iran, have made it clear that when they consider new entrants to the oil market, they are committed to the OPEC+ format, where quotas for each participant are discussed and agreed upon by consensus. So far, I see no reason to believe that this mechanism will be broken in any way. No one is interested in that.

Question: What formats do you see for post-crisis settlement and intra-Ukrainian dialogue? What role might the DPR and LPR play? Ukraine’s governance and education system are permeated with Ukrainian nationalism. Several generations have grown up with this discourse. War criminals will be held accountable under criminal law. What about cultural aspects?

Sergey Lavrov: We have announced the goals we are working to achieve. As for the intra-Ukrainian dialogue, this will be up to the Ukrainians after the special operation ends – I hope, with the signing of comprehensive documents on security issues, Ukraine’s neutral status with guarantees of its security.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, commenting on our initiatives on the non-expansion of NATO, said: we understand that every country needs security guarantees. We are ready to negotiate and work them out for ourselves, for Ukrainians and Europeans outside the framework of NATO expansion. Therefore, a neutral status, security guarantees and bringing the legal framework to a civilised level with regard to the Russian language, education, the media, and laws that encourage the country’s nazification, as well as the adoption of a law prohibiting this. Most European countries have such laws, including Germany.

As for the DPR and LPR’s involvement in the all-Ukrainian dialogue, it should be a sovereign decision of the people’s republics.

Question: Why was the military operation launched now and not eight years ago? At that time, a pro-Russian “anti-Maidan” movement emerged in Odessa and Kharkov, which installed the Russian flag on top of the Kharkov regional administration without firing a shot. The city supported Russia. Now these people are hiding from shelling.

Sergey Lavrov: A lot of factors influence developments at each specific historical moment. Back then, it was a shock, primarily because the West turned out to be an absolutely unreliable guarantor of the things that we supported. US President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and the French leaders called Russian President Vladimir Putin and asked him not to interfere with the agreement between Viktor Yanukovych and the opposition. Vladimir Putin said that if the incumbent president was signing something, it was his right, and he had the authority to negotiate with the opposition. But the West dumped us and immediately began to support the new government because they announced an anti-Russian policy line.

People got burned alive in the House of Trade Unions in Odessa; combat aircraft fired at the centre of Lugansk. You must remember the Novorossiya movement better than anyone else. We also had a public movement for support.

We certainly relied too much on what remained of our Western colleagues’ conscience. France initiated the Normandy format; we were asked not to state categorically that we refused to recognise Petr Poroshenko’s election at the end of May 2014. The West assured us they would do everything to normalise the situation, so that Russians could live normally.

We must have trusted them because of some naivety and kindness of heart, which is something Russians are known for.

I have no doubt that lessons will be learned.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with RBC TV channel, Moscow, March 16, 2022

March 17, 2022

https://www.mid.ru/en/press_service/minister_speeches/1804655/

Question: Initially, the in-person talks were held in Belarus followed by online talks. You met with Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba in Antalya, Turkey, on March 10. What’s your take on the negotiating process?

Sergey Lavrov: I did not fly to Turkey in order to forestall the Belarusian negotiating track agreed upon by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky which is now being implemented via video conference. President Zelensky asked President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to speak with President Putin in order to set up a meeting between Dmitry Kuleba and me in Antalya, since we both planned to take part in the Antalya Diplomacy Forum.

Based on this request, President Vladimir Putin instructed me to hold a meeting and find out what Dmitry Kuleba has to offer (which is what I asked him to do). He stated that he did not arrive there to reiterate public statements. This statement got my attention. Dmitry Kuleba failed to vocalise any new ideas during the 90-minute conversation in the presence of Foreign Minister of Turkey Mevlut Cavusoglu, despite multiple reminders to the effect that I wanted to hear things that had not been said publicly. I did my part and made myself available to listen to what he had to say. Anyway, we had a conversation, which is not a bad thing. We are ready for such contacts going forward. It would be good to know the added value derived from such contacts and how the proposals to create new channels of interaction correlate with the functioning of an existing and steady negotiating process (the Belarusian channel).

I’m not going to comment on the details, which are a delicate matter. According to head of the Russian delegation Vladimir Medinsky, the talks focus on humanitarian issues, the situation on the ground in terms of hostilities, and on matters of political settlement. Overall, the agenda is known (it was repeatedly and publicly announced by President Vladimir Putin in his elaborate remarks) and includes matters of security and saving lives of the people in Donbass; preventing Ukraine from becoming a permanent threat to the security of the Russian Federation; and preventing the revival in Ukraine of neo-Nazi ideology, which is illegal around the world, including civilised Europe.

I base my opinion on the assessments provided by our negotiators. They state that the talks are not going smoothly (for obvious reasons). However, there is hope for a compromise. The same assessment is given by a number of Ukrainian officials, including members of President Zelensky’s staff and President Zelensky himself.

Question: President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelensky said that the positions of Russia and Ukraine during the talks have become more “realistic.”

Sergey Lavrov: This is about a more realistic assessment of the ongoing events coming from Vladimir Zelensky. His previous statements were confrontational. We can see that this role and function has been reassigned to Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba, who started saying that Russia’s demands are “unacceptable.” If they wish to create additional tension (as if the current tension were not enough) in the media space, what can we do?

We saw a similar tendency with respect to the Minsk agreements. Dmitry Kuleba was riding ahead on a dashing horse, along with those who were hacking the Minsk agreements into pieces. He publicly stated that the agreements would not be fulfilled. I would give negotiators an opportunity to work in a calmer environment, without stirring up more hysteria.

Question: President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelensky said that they are “reasonable people” and they realise that they are no longer welcome in NATO. What made him change his rhetoric? NATO aspirations are stated in one of the articles of the Ukrainian Constitution. They have been saying it all along that Kiev actually wants to be part of the alliance.

Sergey Lavrov: The rhetoric has changed because more reasonable thinking is paving its way to the minds of the Ukrainian leaders. The issue of dissolving the Soviet Union was resolved in a very odd manner: very few parties were asked; the decision was split “between three,” so to speak, and it was done. Later, certain common ground was achieved in the form of the Commonwealth of Independent States. It is good that the other former Soviet republics were shown some respect, at least post factum.

In the Declaration of State Sovereignty of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, adopted before the Belovezh Accords, it was stated in black and white that Ukraine would be a non-aligned and militarily neutral state. In all the subsequent documents characterising the formation of Ukrainian statehood, the declaration was always listed among fundamental documents. After the anti-constitutional coup in February 2014, the Ukrainian Constitution was amended to include statements on continuous movement towards NATO (in addition to the European Union). That undermined the integrity of the previous process and the fundamental documents that the Ukrainian state is based on – because the Declaration of Sovereignty and the Act of Ukraine’s Independence are still listed among the founding documents of the Ukrainian state.

This is not the only inconsistency. The provision of the Ukrainian Constitution on ensuring the rights of the Russian and other ethnic minorities remains intact. However, a huge number of laws have been adopted that run counter to this constitutional provision and flagrantly discriminate against the Russian language, in particular, against all European norms.

We remember that President Zelensky recently said that NATO must close the sky over Ukraine and start fighting for Ukraine, recruiting mercenaries and sending them to the frontline. That statement was made very aggressively. The reaction of the North Atlantic Alliance, where some clear-headed people still remain, had a cooling effect. This reasonable approach in the current situation deserves to be welcomed.

Before the final decision was made to begin the special military operation, President Vladimir Putin spoke about our initiatives concerning the security guarantees in Europe at a news conference in the Kremlin, explaining that it is unacceptable that Ukraine’s security be ensured through its NATO membership. He clearly said that we are ready to look for any ways to ensure the security of Ukraine, the European countries and Russia except for NATO’s expansion to the east. The alliance has been assuring us that we should not be worried as it serves a defensive purpose and nothing threatens us and our security. The alliance was declared as defensive in its early days. During the Cold War, it was clear who was defending whom, where and against which party. There was the Berlin Wall, both concrete and geopolitical. Everybody accepted that contact line under the Warsaw Pact and NATO. It was clear which line NATO would protect.

When the Warsaw Pact and later the Soviet Union were dissolved, NATO started, at its own discretion and without any consultations with those who used to be part of the balance of power on the European continent, working its way to the east, moving the contact line further to the right each time. When the contact line came too close to us (and nobody took our reasoning seriously in the past 20 years), we proposed the European security initiatives which, to my great regret, were also ignored by our arrogant partners.

Question: Many people in Russia and Ukraine are asking themselves whether the situation could not have been resolved peacefully. Why didn’t this work out? Why did it become necessary to conduct a special operation?

Sergey Lavrov: Because the West did not want to resolve this situation peacefully. Although I have already discussed this aspect, I would like to highlight it once again. This has absolutely nothing to do with Ukraine. This concerns the international order, rather than Ukraine alone.

The United States has pinned down the whole of Europe. Today, some Europeans are telling us that Russia started behaving differently, that Europe had its own special interests differing from those of the United States, and that we have compelled Europe to share the United States’ fervour for the cause. I believe that what has happened is entirely different. Under President Joe Biden, the United States set the goal of subordinating Europe, and it has succeeded in forcing Europe to implicitly follow US policies. This is a crucial moment, a landmark in contemporary history because, in the broad sense of the word, it reflects the battle for a future international order.

The West stopped using the term “international law,” embodied in the UN Charter, many years ago, and it invented the term “rules-based order.” These rules were written by members of an inner circle. The West incentivised those who accepted these rules. At the same time, narrow non-universal organisations dealing with the same matters as the universal organisations were established. Apart from UNESCO, there is a certain international partnership in support of information and democracy. We have international humanitarian law and the UN Refugee Agency dealing with related issues. The European Union is setting up a special partnership for dealing with the same matter. However, decisions will be based on EU interests, and they will disregard universal processes.

France and Germany are establishing an alliance for multilateralism. When asked about the reason for setting it up at a time when the UN – the most legitimate and universal organisation – embodies multilateralism, they gave an interesting reply that the UN employed many retrogrades, and that the new alliance prioritised avantgardism. They also stated their intention to promote multilateralism in such a way that no one would hamper their efforts. When asked what the ideals of this multilateralism were, they said that they were EU values. This arrogance and misinterpreted feeling of one’s own superiority also rule supreme in a situation that we are now reviewing, namely, the creation of a world where the West would a priori manage everything with impunity. Many people now claim that Russia has come under attack because it remains virtually the only obstacle that needs to be removed before the West can start dealing with China. This straightforward statement is quite truthful.

You asked why it was impossible to peacefully resolve the situation. For many years, we suggested resolving the matter peacefully. Many reasonable politicians from the US and Europe responded in earnest to Vladimir Putin’s proposal at the 2007 Munich Security Conference. Unfortunately, decision-makers in Western countries ignored it. Numerous assessments by world-famous political analysts, published in many leading US magazines, such as Foreign Policy and Foreign Affairs, and European magazines, were also ignored. A coup took place in 2014. The West unconditionally backed Ukraine and the coup’s perpetrators who had gained power in Kiev. The West emphatically refuses to set any framework in relations between NATO and the territory of Russian interests. These warnings were also voiced but were disregarded, to put it mildly.

You should read the works of Zbigniew Brzezinski, who said back in the 1990s that Ukraine would become a key issue. He said openly that a friendly Ukraine would make Russia a great power, and that a hostile Ukraine would turn it into a regional player. These statements concealed geopolitical implications. Ukraine merely acted as a tool for preventing Russia from upholding its legitimate and equal rights on the international scene.

Question: Not long ago, I heard the current adviser to the President of Ukraine, Alexey Arestovich, speak. A couple of years ago, he said that neutral status was too expensive for Ukraine. “We can’t afford it,” he said. What do you think about this statement? Is that true? Following up on what worries ordinary Ukrainians – security guarantees – what is Russia ready to do? What kind of guarantees can it provide?

Sergey Lavrov: Neutral status is being seriously discussed in a package with security guarantees. This is exactly what President Vladimir Putin said at one of his news conferences: there are multiple options out there, including any generally acceptable security guarantees for Ukraine and all other countries, including Russia, with the exception of NATO expansion. This is what is being discussed at the talks. There is specific language which is, I believe, close to being agreed upon.

Question: Can you share it with us yet or not?

Sergey Lavrov: I’d rather not, because it is a negotiating process. Unlike some of our partners, we try to adhere to the culture of diplomatic negotiations, even though we were forced to make documents public that are normally off-limits. We did so in the situations where our communication with the German and French participants of the Normandy format was misrepresented to the point where it was the opposite of what really happened. Then, in order to expose the culprits before the international community, we were forced to make things public. No attempts at provocation are being made now as we discuss the guarantees of Ukraine’s neutrality. Hopefully, the first attempts at a businesslike approach that we are seeing now will prevail and we will be able to reach specific agreements on this matter even though simply declaring neutrality and announcing guarantees will be a significant step forward. The problem is much broader. We talked about it, including from the point of view of values such as the Russian language, culture and freedom of speech, since Russian media are outright banned, and the ones that broadcast in Ukraine in Russian were shut down.

Question: But they can always tell us that they are an independent country and it’s up to them to decide which language to speak. Why are you – Russia and Moscow – forcing us to speak Russian?

Sergey Lavrov: Because Ukraine has European obligations. There is the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. There are multiple other commitments, including in the Council of Europe, which we are leaving (this has been announced officially). However, we will never renounce our obligations regarding the rights of ethnic minorities, be they linguistic, cultural, or any other. We will never “withdraw from the documents” that guarantee freedom of access to information.

In the 1990s, everyone was rubbing their hands together in anticipation of the Soviet Union becoming an absolutely obedient and obsequious partner of the West. Back then, we did our best to show that perestroika and new thinking were opening up a groundbreaking chapter in the history of our state. We signed everything that the West wanted us to sign at the OSCE, including the declaration proposed by the West and supported by us which contained obligations to ensure freedom of access to information in each country and to transboundary information sources. Now, we are unable to get through to the West so that it itself starts fulfilling this obligation, which they themselves initiated.

This Russian language-related requirement is enshrined in the obligations. Ukraine did not turn them down. Can you imagine the consequences of Finland banning the Swedish language? There are 6 percent of Swedes in Finland, and Swedish is the second official language. Or, Ireland banning English, or Belgium banning French? The list goes on and on. All these minority languages ​​are respected, regardless of the fact that they have a parent state, whereas our case represents an exception. This is a case of outright discrimination, and what is known as enlightened Europe is just keeping quiet about it.

Question: We have decided to withdraw from the Council of Europe before being expelled. Why?

Sergey Lavrov: By and large, this decision was formulated long ago. Not because of a series of suspension and reinstatement of our rights, but because that organisation has fully degenerated. It was established as a pan-European organisation of all countries, with the exception of Belarus which was given observer status. We did our best to help Belarus participate in several conventions, which is possible in the Council of Europe. In general, Belarus was considering the possibility of joining it.

However, over the years the Council of Europe has turned into a kind of OSCE, (excuse my language), where the initial idea of interaction and consensus as the main instruments of attaining the goal of common European cooperation and security was superceded by polemics and rhetoric, which was becoming increasingly Russophobic and was determined by the unilateral interests of the West, in particular, NATO countries and the EU. They used their technical majority in the OSCE and the Council of Europe to undermine the culture of consensus and compromise and to force their views on everyone, showing that they have no regard whatsoever, do not care one iota for our interests and only want to lecture and moralise, which is what they have actually been doing.

Our intention to withdraw matured long ago, but our decision to withdraw has been accelerated by the recent events and the decision enforced through voting. The Parliamentary Assembly issued recommendations for the Committee of Ministers, which has voted to suspend our rights. They told us not to worry, that we would only be unable to attend the sessions but can still make our payments to the budget.  This is what they have openly said.

The Foreign Ministry pointed out in a statement that our withdrawal from this organisation will not affect the rights and freedoms of Russian citizens under the European Convention on Human Rights, from which we are withdrawing as part of our withdrawal from the Council of Europe. First of all, there are constitutional guarantees and guarantees under the international conventions to which Russia is a party. These universal conventions are the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (which the United States has not signed); the Convention on the Rights of the Child (the US is not among its signatories) and many other conventions and covenants most of which have been incorporated into the national legislation. Our lawyers are working with the Constitutional Court and the Justice Ministry on additional amendments to Russian laws to prevent any infringement on the rights of our citizens as the result of our withdrawal from the Council of Europe.

Question: Several counties have been trying to develop dialogue between Moscow and Kiev. France was the first to do this, followed by Israel, and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu will come to Moscow today. Turkey has stepped up its activity. Why are these three countries so active on this issue?

Sergey Lavrov: They are not the only ones to offer their services. The President of Russia had a telephone conversation with President of the European Council Charles Michel yesterday. He has had contacts with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, President of France Emmanuel Macron and Prime Minister of Israel Naftali Bennett. My foreign colleagues have contacted me as well. For example, Switzerland, which has traditionally posed as a country where compromises are reached, is ready to mediate.

In this context, it is strange that mediation services are being offered by the countries which have joined the unprecedented sanctions against Russia and have proclaimed the goal (they make no bones about stating this openly) of setting the Russian people against the Russian authorities. We take a positive view on the mediation offers coming from the countries which have refused to play this Russophobic game, which are aware of the root causes of the current crisis, that is, the fundamental and legitimate national interests of Russia, and which have not joined this war of sanctions. We are ready to analyse their proposals. Israel and Turkey are among these states.

Question: Do they come with proposals, asking if they could help establish dialogue?  Or how is this taking place in reality?

Sergey Lavrov: This happens in different ways. Right now, I cannot go into detail, but both want to help achieve accord at the talks conducted via the “Belarusian channel.”  They know the state of the talks, what proposals are on the table, and where there is a bilateral rapprochement.   They are sincerely trying to speed up the rapprochement. We welcome this, but I would like to stress once again that the matter of key importance is having a direct dialogue between the Russian and Ukrainian delegations and  solving what we consider fundamental issues related to the effort not only to ensure the physical security of people in eastern Ukraine and for that matter in other parts of Ukraine, but also to enable them to live normal, civilised lives in the country that has a duty to ensure the rights of  those who are known as ethnic minorities, rights that have been trampled underfoot in every sense.

Let us not forget about the tasks of demilitarisation. Ukraine cannot have weapons that create a threat to the Russian Federation. We are ready to negotiate on the types of armaments that do not present a threat to us. This problem will have to be solved even regardless of the situation’s NATO aspect. Even without NATO membership, the United States or anyone else can supply offensive weapons to Ukraine on a bilateral basis, just as they did with the anti-missile bases in Poland and Romania. No one asked NATO. Let us not forget that [Ukraine] is perhaps the only OSCE and European country that has legislatively legalised the neo-Nazis’ right to promote their views and practices.

These are matters of principle. I hope that the realisation of their legitimacy, justifiability and key importance for our interests and therefore the interests of European security will enable those, who are graciously offering their good offices, to promote relevant compromises in contacts with Ukraine, among others.

Question: We have named certain countries that are helping to settle this crisis. Has the United States offered any services in this connection, like “let us help to establish contacts?” After all, it is no secret to anyone that Russia-US relations were at a very low level. Now they have hit rock bottom, haven’t they?

Sergey Lavrov: Yes, there is such a figurative expression. Of course, the situation is unprecedented. I can’t recall anything like the frenzied policy that Washington is conducting right now. To a considerable extent, this policy is generated by Congress whose members have lost all sense of reality and are throwing all conventions to the winds. I am not even mentioning the diplomatic proprieties that have long since been abandoned.

The United States certainly has played the decisive role in shaping the position of the Kiev authorities. The Americans have maintained a huge “presence” in Kiev’s “corridors of power” for many years, including the uniformed agencies, the security service, and the top brass. Everyone knows this. The CIA and other US secret services have their missions there.

Like other NATO members (the Canadians, the British), they have sent hundreds of their instructors to train combat units not only within the Armed Forces of Ukraine but also in the so-called volunteer battalions, including Azov and Aydar. However, some seven or eight years ago, in 2014, immediately after the coup d’etat, the Azov battalion was officially struck off the list of recipients of US aid.  This was done precisely because it was regarded as an extremist, if not terrorist, organisation. Today, all pretences have been removed.

Now any person or group in Ukraine that declares Russia its enemy is immediately taken under the wing of overseas and Western patrons.

They are talking about the supremacy of law and about democracy. What supremacy of law, if the EU, in violation of its own law on the inadmissibility of arms supplies to conflict zones, takes the decision to do the opposite and send offensive arms to Ukraine?

We do not see any sign that the United States is interested in settling the conflict as soon as possible. If they were interested, they would have every opportunity, first, to explain to the Ukrainian negotiators and President Zelensky that they should seek compromises. Second, they need to make it clear that they are aware of the legitimacy of our demands and positions, but do not want to accept them, not because they are illegitimate but because they would like to dominate the world and are unwilling to restrain themselves with any commitments to take into consideration the interests of others. They have already brought Europe to heel, as I have said.

The US has been telling Europe for years that Nord Stream 2 could undermine their energy security. Europe responded that they should find out that on their own. They took the decision and their companies invested billions of euros. The Americans were claiming that this was contrary to the EU’s interests. They offered to sell them their liquefied gas. If there are no gas terminals, they should be built.  The Germans told me this a few years ago. It was during President Trump’s administration. Europe was complaining that this would considerably increase gas prices for their consumers. Donald Trump replied that they were rich guys and will compensate the difference from the German budget. That’s their approach.

Today, Europe was shown its place. Germany eventually said that its regulator was taking a break, and this precisely defines the FRG’s place in the arrangements that the Americans are making on the world scene.

Question: Has Germany become a less independent state under the new chancellor? Would it have acted the same under Angela Merkel?

Sergey Lavrov: The Nord Stream 2 was commissioned, albeit temporarily suspended afterwards, under the new chancellor. I hope that experience will bring an understanding of the need to uphold national interests, rather than to fully rely on the overseas partner who will make all the decisions for you and then do everything for you as well. Clearly, the enormous number of US troops on German soil is also a factor that interferes with independent decision-making.

Articles are being published to the effect that the “politics of memory” is vanishing. It has always been considered a sacred thing in Germany and meant that the German people would never forget the suffering they brought during World War II, primarily to the peoples of the Soviet Union. After I read this, I realised that many people are aware of it. These are open publications. German political scientists are talking about this and, of course, ours do so as well. Several years ago, I spotted something that was probably the early phase of this emerging trend. We were holding ministerial and other consultations with the Germans (I’m talking about foreign policy talks) at the level of department directors and deputy ministers. I never saw this at the ministerial level. The thought that was conveyed to us during the talks was that “we, the Germans, have paid our dues to everyone and owe nothing to anyone, so stop bringing this up.”

Speaking of the Germans, there is a thing that is worth mentioning. We are now talking a lot about attributes of genocide or racial discrimination. Take, for instance, the siege of Leningrad. For many years and with all my colleagues, starting with Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Guido Westerwelle, Heiko Maas, and most recently Annalena Baerbock, I very persistently, with each of them, raised the topic of paying compensations to the Leningrad siege survivors. The German government has made two one-time payments but only to Jewish survivors. We asked why only Jews, because many ethnic groups, including Russians and Tatars, lived in Leningrad and continue to live there. Many of them are still alive. How are they supposed to understand the fact that only the Jews have received some kind of help from the German government when at the time they were boiling shoes, burying children and transporting corpses on sleds together? The payments in question are not big. But, first, for many of them they matter, and second, they serve as the recognition of the fact that everyone has been impacted by the siege. Their answer was interesting. The Jews, they said, are victims of the Holocaust. These payments cannot be made to other survivors, because they are not Holocaust victims. Our attempts to reach out to the German legislators and politicians and tell them that the siege of Leningrad was an unparalleled event in the history of WWII, where there was no distinction between Jews, Russians or other ethnic groups, failed. We reached out to Jewish organisations. It is a matter of honour for them as well. We will continue this work going forward. January marked yet another anniversary of the lifting of the siege of Leningrad. The President of Russia signed an executive order on one-time payments to all siege survivors, including the Jews. We have not seen any sign of conscience awakening in Germany so far.

To be continued…

‘After Syria, Ukraine is part two of World War III’: Senior Analyst

March 17, 2022

In a recent episode of his YouTube political talk program ’60 minutes’, senior Lebanese political analyst Nasser Qandil argued that ‘the Ukraine war is part two of World War III’, after ‘part one in Syria had ended in a clear victory for Russia’.

Source: Nasser Qandil (YouTube)

Description:
Date: March 7, 2022

( Please help us keep producing independent translations for you by contributing a small monthly amount here )

Transcript:

Nasser Qandil:

I wish to talk about a number of points regarding the Ukraine war, because we – as always –aim at deepening and consolidating the understanding, awareness, and perception of all those watching us, and helping them to receive the means (that raise their) awareness and not (imposing) our own outcome, meaning they can use the tools, premises, and introductions (we present) to reach different conclusions – and this is an achievement that’s way more important than (merely) dictating to them the outcome (of analyses) and saying (that’s the whole thing) and ‘full stop’ (i.e. you don’t need to think any further). Therefore, our mission in this program is to increase the knowledge (of viewers), and not only to use (the knowledge) we have or that which people have (in our discussions).

The first conclusion I wish to consolidate with you, my dear viewers, is that this war is the largest war after World War II. I personally tried to check through history before adopting this conclusion, (looking into) the Korean war, the Vietnam war, the Invasion of Iraq, the Invasion of Afghanistan, the wars of Israel in our region (the Middle East) since 1967 including the October War we fought (against Israel) as Arabs, and the Israeli invasion of Lebanon; this whole outcome makes me confidently say, bearing responsibility for my words, that this is the world’s largest war after World War II, and I’ll explain why.

The first point is that the initiator of this war is Russia, while all the other wars had (another) common (factor). We haven’t witnessed a war – except for a limited number like the October War for example, like initiatives (by forces) opposing the American (hegemony) project and its extensions and alliances, the majority – 99% of the wars witnessed after World War II were wars of domination and control carried out by the US. Therefore, we are before a war, the first characteristic of which is the transfer of the military initiative in decision-making. This shift moved from a side that was the only one taking the initiative, and which has, for seventy years, taken the lead at the global level, which is the US, (that recently) withdrew from Afghanistan and (began) avoiding to take part in wars and (began) gathering its shreds and shrapnel from places it got involved in with the aim of incurring the least amount of (further) losses, and in an attempt to strike settlement (agreements), (while) on the other hand we have the rise of a side that has started – since more than 10 years within a limited (pace) – speaking about the South Ossetian war in 2008, the Crimean Peninsula war in 2014, the huge position (Russia took) in Syria in 2015, and (the part it took) in Kazakhstan in 2021. However, now (this war) is President Putin’s largest war – Russia’s largest war after this calm ascent (of Russia), and the parallel decline of American power.

Here, we can’t look at the war from the (aspect of) geography alone. Before going into the geographical (aspect), it’s a fundamental and essential issue yes. But (first) we’re talking about a descending arc of a state, which is the US arc (of power), and an ascending Russian arc – an arc that represents this rise of Asia as a whole, and can be seen in Eastern countries in different manifestations, even if there weren’t a precise and accurate coordination and approach between Russia, Iran, and China – because there are many who would try to dig up some cracks and holes within this presentation; we are not talking about congruence of approaches. Even in the Syrian war, China didn’t take the position that Iran took; Russia took time until it took (its) position (to support Syria,) but it eventually did and paid the price for it and reaped its fruits. Consequently, it’s not necessary to speak about congruence, yet there’s an Asian rise (of power) that no one can argue about, a rise that shakes American hegemony. No one can say that the rise of Iran is not evident, and that this rise (of power) didn’t lead to the erosion of America’s position and grip on the heart of Asia and especially in our region (the Middle East). (In addition,) China’s rise worries America and the entire West, and Russia’s rise is now evident in the military sphere and through this huge, massive qualitative step, which (helped) form this ascending Russian arc that expresses this rise of Asia, (a Russian arc) that is sometimes ahead of the (Asian arc) such that it enjoys a higher degree of courage in its decision-making, (all of this) while the descending American arc (lies on the other side)…here we talk about the second characteristic of this war, which makes it one of the world’s most important wars after World War II, which is that it’s taking place in Europe.

All other wars – in the view of the West that led the world, (the West being) the US and Europe – were on the peripheries and in third world countries. I mean, check (the history) of all the (previous) wars – it (will help) explain to us why this revival of racist thought is being seen in (the attitudes) of journalists and analysts through unintended slips of tongue sometimes, (because) maybe if they thought a little about it they’d be ashamed (of what they were saying). However, this war is actually in Europe, and not in a third world country.

Therefore, for the first time since World War II – although the Yugoslavian war was in Europe, it was a war carried out by the US and western Europe to destroy what’s left of the Soviet legacy, to pave the way for a tight grip on the entire geography, economy, and politics of Europe. Now, this is the first war to knock Europe’s door, meaning that Russia is fighting a war and it’s on the European door. This is the second factor.

The third factor – I want to draw attention to the necessity of investigation, to reread information about Ukraine. Here, I’ll provide the main points to help (the viewer) get (the idea of) what we’re talking about. There’s a chain called ‘The European Bridge’ of five major European states, historically speaking: Spain, France, Germany, Poland, and Ukraine. Ukraine, in terms of (geographical) area equals (the area of) France plus a bit, (and it equals) Germany + Holland + Belgium + Switzerland (all together) in (its geographical) area. Ukraine’s population equals the population of France and equals the population of both Poland and Romania added together. The rest of the Eastern European countries became fragments – after the dissolution of Czechoslovakia – the rest, such as Lithuania, Estonia and Hungary are actually micro-states compared to the size of Ukraine. We’re speaking about 45 million people, meaning twice the number of Iraq’s (population) back when the war started (there). We’re speaking about an area of (about) 600,000 km², which is Syria’s size multiplied by three times and a half, and Lebanon’s size multiplied by 60. We are speaking about the second (most important) state in the Soviet Union after Russia, in terms of size, population, army, technical qualifications of its (various) generations, its colleges, participation in food and technical production, its position in terms of nuclear weapons.

So, we’re not speaking about Iraq, the besieged, disintegrated, weak Iraq that suffers from internal crises, that is not supported by any (external) side, and which is this far (from Europe) – if (in) Iraq, the US army’s entrance to the capital, Baghdad, took 20 days while they were at their peak of advancement, and so even if it takes the Russian army 200 days to enter Kyiv, they will still be considered as making (good) progress – (this approach) allows us to read the situation correctly. Ukraine – this is Ukraine, of course in Ukrainian history there’s a connection between it and Russia; Ukraine is to a large extent (considered as a) mini-Russia. Originally, Russia initiated from Kyiv, the Russian Empire was founded in Kyiv and then moved to Moscow. Therefore, there are efforts for reaching parity, or emulation and competition (between them). Ukraine believes – those who know the traditional Soviet environment (can relate), when we used to visit the Soviet Union, none would introduce themselves by their original nationality and point out that they’re not Russian, except for the Ukrainians; they use to say ‘I’m not Russian’. And I’m speaking about communists, he’d be an official whose mission is to negotiate with us and talk about issues. So, (we can notice that) Ukraine has a sense of competition, with the European background, and a dimension that is related to the way Ukraine was formed – which is a group of (mixed) ethnicities, and if you look at its geography you can notice that parts of it didn’t belong to Ukraine and Stalin later joined many of them to Ukraine: a part of Moldova, a part of Poland, in addition to the Crimean Peninsula that was originally Russian.

Anyway, Lenin and Stalin had a bias for Ukraine and a special interest in satisfying this Ukrainian pride and reassuring them that (Ukraine) is of an important and special status. Therefore, it has always been – I use a metaphor sometimes, I’d say that Ukraine’s (relation) with Russia is like Queen Elizabeth and Lady Diana, in which Queen Elizabeth represents the throne, history (of England), etc., and Lady Diana is the sweet, lovely, popular, (lady) that (represents) elegance, youth, and beauty etc. Therefore, Ukraine, in the eyes of the Soviet Union and the West – Brzezinski said in the 80s or 1978 that ‘Russia without Ukraine is a great state, and a very great one, yet without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be an Empire’.

So, we must know what we are speaking about, and why am I saying these words. It is to say that the conclusion is that Putin – this is his war, (the war) that he had been preparing for since at least 2014, because the 2014 war when he annexed the Crimean Peninsula and joined it to Russia, it was the first Ukrainian war for President Putin. (Furthermore,) since 2008, when he entered South Ossetia, he wasn’t aiming at Georgia; look at the (world) map, you’ll see Georgia’s size compared to Ukraine, it can’t even be compared to it! The fight is over Ukraine, the same way Syria was (of great importance) in the Middle East; the one who controls Syria will have control over the (whole Middle East) region and the world through it, (now,) the one who controls Ukraine will have control over Europe and the world through it.

Therefore, the first point we must break free from in our thinking and debate, is talking about the duration of the war; who said Putin wishes to end it in a short period of time? Why put a formula that says that one of the signs of success is the speed in which the achievement is done? It’s not a rule at all! This war might be (intentionally) designed to be a long one, so that a new world system could be built upon its ramifications, developments, and (resulting) frameworks.

It’s a war that cannot end without (reaching) a Russian-American-European settlement. Who’s Zelenskyy? What (kind of) position and power does he have (compared to Russia’s power)? What can he offer in any kind of negotiations? And what kind of decision does he get to make in negotiations? Therefore, it’s a Russian-American war. Europe became part of it. And if Europe had made the decision of not being a part of it, the whole thing would’ve ended through a Russian-European settlement. Therefore, the US used all its capabilities to make Europe a part of it, but that’s not a permanent condition. Today the fight is over Europe; to what extent can Europe remain part of this war?

Therefore, we are before part two of World War III. If Syria was the first episode, then Ukraine is the second episode. The first episode ended – if we are speaking internationally – it ended with a clear victory for Russia. Now we are before the second episode.

Chris Hedges: Waltzing Toward Armageddon with the Merchants of Death

March 14, 2022

“Raft of Doom” / Illustration by Mr. Fish
Chris Hedges is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist who was a foreign correspondent for fifteen years for The New York Times, where he served as the Middle East Bureau Chief and Balkan Bureau Chief for the paper. He previously worked overseas for The Dallas Morning NewsThe Christian Science Monitor, and NPR. He is the host of the Emmy Award-nominated show On Contact.  AUTHOR LINK

By Chris Hedges

Source

PRINCETON, NEW JERSEY (Scheerpost) — The Cold War, from 1945 to 1989, was a wild Bacchanalia for arms manufacturers, the Pentagon, the CIA, the diplomats who played one country off another on the world’s chessboard, and the global corporations able to loot and pillage by equating predatory capitalism with freedom. In the name of national security, the Cold Warriors, many of them self-identified liberals, demonized labor, independent media, human rights organizations, and those who opposed the permanent war economy and the militarization of American society as soft on communism.

That is why they have resurrected it.

The decision to spurn the possibility of peaceful coexistence with Russia at the end of the Cold War is one of the most egregious crimes of the late 20th century. The danger of provoking Russia was universally understood with the collapse of the Soviet Union, including by political elites as diverse as Henry Kissinger and George F. Kennan, who called the expansion of NATO into Central Europe “the most fateful error of American policy in the entire post-Cold War era.”

This provocation, a violation of a promise not to expand NATO beyond the borders of a unified Germany, has seen Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Albania, Croatia, Montenegro, and North Macedonia inducted into the Western military alliance. This betrayal was compounded by a decision to station NATO troops, including thousands of US troops, in Eastern Europe, another violation of an agreement made by Washington with Moscow. The Russian invasion of Ukraine, perhaps a cynical goal of the Western alliance, has now solidified an expanding and resurgent NATO and a rampant, uncontrollable militarism. The masters of war may be ecstatic, but the potential consequences, including a global conflagration, are terrifying.

Peace has been sacrificed for US global hegemony. It has been sacrificed for the billions in profits made by the arms industry. Peace could have seen state resources invested in people rather than systems of control. It could have allowed us to address the climate emergency. But we cry peace, peace, and there is no peace. Nations frantically rearm, threatening nuclear war. They prepare for the worst, ensuring that the worst will happen.

So what if the Amazon is reaching its final tipping point where trees will soon begin to die off en masse. So what if land ice and ice shelves are melting from below at a much faster rate than predicted. So what if temperatures soar, monster hurricanes, floods, droughts, and wildfires devastate the earth. In the face of the gravest existential crisis to beset the human species, and most other species, the ruling elites stoke a conflict that is driving up the price of oil and turbocharging the fossil fuel extraction industry. It is collective madness.

Ukraine Art
The Butcher’s Cut | Illustration by Mr. Fish

The march towards protracted conflict with Russia and China will backfire. The desperate effort to counter the steady loss of economic dominance by the US will not be offset by military dominance. If Russia and China can create an alternative global financial system, one that does not use the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency, it will signal the collapse of the American empire. The dollar will plummet in value. Treasury bonds, used to fund America’s massive debt, will become largely worthless. The financial sanctions used to cripple Russia will be, I expect, the mechanism that slays us, if we don’t first immolate ourselves in thermonuclear war.

Washington plans to turn Ukraine into Chechnya or the old Afghanistan, when the Carter administration, under the influence of the Svengali-like National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, equipped and armed the radical jihadists that would morph into the Taliban and al Qaeda in the fight against the Soviets. It will not be good for Russia. It will not be good for the United States. It will not be good for Ukraine, as making Russia bleed will require rivers of Ukrainian blood. The decision to destroy the Russian economy, to turn the Ukrainian war into a quagmire for Russia and topple the regime of Vladimir Putin will open a Pandora’s box of evils. Massive social engineering — look at Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya or Vietnam — has its own centrifugal force. It destroys those who play God.

The Ukrainian war has silenced the last vestiges of the Left. Nearly everyone has giddily signed on for the great crusade against the latest embodiment of evil, Vladimir Putin, who, like all our enemies, has become the new Hitler. The United States will give $13.6 billion in military and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, with the Biden administration authorizing on Saturday an additional $200 million in military assistance. The 5,000-strong EU rapid deployment force, the recruitment of all Eastern Europe, including Ukraine, into NATO, the reconfiguration of former Soviet Bloc militaries to NATO weapons and technology have all been fast tracked. Germany, for the first time since World War II, is massively rearming. It has lifted its ban on exporting weapons. Its new military budget is twice the amount of the old budget, with promises to raise the budget to more than 2 percent of GDP, which would move its military from the seventh largest in the world to the third-, behind China and the United States. NATO battlegroups are being doubled in size in the Baltic states to more than 6,000 troops. Battlegroups will be sent to Romania and Slovakia. Washington will double the number of U.S. troops stationed in Poland to 9,000. Sweden and Finland are considering dropping their neutral status to integrate with NATO.

This is a recipe for global war. History, as well as all the conflicts I covered as a war correspondent, have demonstrated that when military posturing begins, it often takes little to set the funeral pyre alight. One mistake. One overreach. One military gamble too many. One too many provocations. One act of desperation.

Russia’s threat to attack weapons convoys to Ukraine from the West; its airstrike on a military base in western Ukraine, 12 miles from the Polish border, which is a staging area for foreign mercenaries; the statement by Polish President Andrzej Duda that the use of weapons of mass destruction, such as chemical weapons, by Russia against Ukraine, would be a “game-changer” that could force NATO to rethink its decision to refrain from direct military intervention — all are ominous developments pushing the alliance closer to open warfare with Russia.

Once military forces are deployed, even if they are supposedly in a defensive posture, the bear trap is set. It takes very little to trigger the spring. The vast military bureaucracy, bound to alliances and international commitments, along with detailed plans and timetables, when it starts to roll forward, becomes unstoppable. It is propelled not by logic but by action and reaction, as Europe learned in two world wars.

The moral hypocrisy of the United States is staggering. The crimes Russia is carrying out in Ukraine are more than matched by the crimes committed by Washington in the Middle East over the last two decades, including the act of preemptive war, which under post-Nuremberg laws is a criminal act of aggression. Only rarely is this hypocrisy exposed as when USAmbassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the body: “We’ve seen videos of Russian forces moving exceptionally lethal weaponry into Ukraine, which has no place on the battlefield. That includes cluster munitions and vacuum bombs which are banned under the Geneva Convention.” Hours later, the official transcript of her remark was amended to tack on the words “if they are directed against civilians.” This is because the U.S., which like Russia never ratified the Convention on Cluster Munitions treaty, regularly uses cluster munitions. It used them in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Iraq. It has provided them to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen. Russia has yet to come close to the tally of civilian deaths from cluster munitions delivered by the US military.

The Dr. Strangeloves, like zombies rising from the mass graves they created around the globe, are once again stoking new campaigns of industrial mass slaughter. No diplomacy. No attempt to address the legitimate grievances of our adversaries. No check on rampant militarism. No capacity to see the world from another perspective. No ability to comprehend reality outside the confines of the binary rubric of good and evil. No understanding of the debacles they orchestrated for decades. No capacity for pity or remorse.

Elliot Abrams worked in the Reagan administration when I was reporting from Central America. He covered up atrocities and massacres committed by the military regimes in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and by the US-backed Contra forces fighting the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. He viciously attacked reporters and human rights groups as communists or fifth columnists, calling us “un-American” and “unpatriotic.” He was convicted for lying to Congress about his role in the Iran-Contra affair. During the administration of George W. Bush, he lobbied for the invasion of Iraq and tried to orchestrate a U.S. coup in Venezuela to overthrow Hugo Chávez.

“There will be no substitute for military strength, and we do not have enough,” writes Abrams for the Council on Foreign Relations, where he is a senior fellow: “It should be crystal clear now that a larger percentage of GDP will need to be spent on defense. We will need more conventional strength in ships and planes. We will need to match the Chinese in advanced military technology, but at the other end of the spectrum, we may need many more tanks if we have to station thousands in Europe, as we did during the Cold War. (The total number of American tanks permanently stationed in Europe today is zero.) Persistent efforts to diminish even further the size of our nuclear arsenal or prevent its modernization were always bad ideas, but now, as China and Russia are modernizing their nuclear weaponry and appear to have no interest in negotiating new limits, such restraints should be completely abandoned. Our nuclear arsenal will need to be modernized and expanded so that we will never face the kinds of threats Putin is now making from a position of real nuclear inferiority.”

Putin played into the hands of the war industry. He gave the warmongers what they wanted. He fulfilled their wildest fantasies. There will be no impediments now on the march to Armageddon. Military budgets will soar. The oil will gush from the ground. The climate crisis will accelerate. China and Russia will form the new axis of evil. The poor will be abandoned. The roads across the earth will be clogged with desperate refugees. All dissent will be treason. The young will be sacrificed for the tired tropes of glory, honor, and country. The vulnerable will suffer and die. The only true patriots will be generals, war profiteers, opportunists, courtiers in the media and demagogues braying for more and more blood. The merchants of death rule like Olympian gods.  And we, cowed by fear, intoxicated by war, swept up in the collective hysteria, clamor for our own annihilation.

‘Syrian chemical attack’ – Ukraine edition coming soon?

 March 12, 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Gavin O’Reilly 

Even a ‘limited’ strike against Russian military infrastructure would immediately place the world on an irreversible path to the gravest consequence of all – nuclear war.

‘Syrian chemical attack’ – Ukraine edition coming soon?

Over the past two weeks, media headlines worldwide have been dominated by the Russian military intervention in Ukraine – launched in response to almost nine years of Western provocations, beginning with the CIA and MI6 orchestrated Euromaidan color revolution in November 2013, following then-President Viktor Yanukovych’s decision to suspend an EU trade deal in favor of closer ties with Russia, which in turn would lead the predominantly ethnic Russian Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics in the eastern Donbass region breaking away from Kiev’s control in April 2014, the catalyst for this secession being the anti-Russian far-right sympathizers that would make up the Western-backed post-Maidan government of Petro Poroshenko.

A near eight-year-long war on both Republics would follow, involving Kiev-supported neo-Nazi factions such as Azov Battalion and Right Sector. The war would eventually lead to an estimated 14,000 deaths, a conflict that Moscow would seek to resolve through diplomatic means via the Minsk Agreements – a federalization solution in which Donetsk and Lugansk would be granted a degree of autonomy whilst still remaining under Ukrainian rule. However, the failure of Kiev to implement its side of the agreements, as well as the ongoing attacks on the ethnic Russians in the Donbass and the inevitability that Ukraine would ultimately go on to become a NATO member and host weapons and troops intended to attack Russia, would ultimately force Moscow into launching a military intervention into its Western neighbor in order to demilitarise and de-Nazify the country.

Two weeks into the conflict, it has become apparent from the corporate media narrative of the ‘Ukrainian resistance’ that the goal of the US and its allies, with little regard for the Ukrainian civilians they claim to care about, is to drag Moscow into a military quagmire in the second-largest country in Europe. This tactic is one with historical usage against the Kremlin: In 1979, at the height of the Cold War, the CIA and MI6 would begin a covert operation of arming and training Islamist fundamentalists, including Osama Bin Laden, known as the Mujahideen, who would go on to wage war on the then-Socialist government of Afghanistan – leading to a ten-year-long Soviet military intervention, something which many commentators have seen as a contributing factor to the subsequent break-up of the bloc in 1991. Indeed, Zbigniew Brzezinski, National Security Advisor to US President Jimmy Carter when Operation Cyclone was launched in 1979, would later recount in a 1998 interview how drawing the USSR into a costly military intervention was a motivating factor in its inception.

Despite the intention of the Neocons and the war lobby to seemingly draw the Russian Federation into an Iraq war-style quagmire, there also appears to be an element who favors an approach that would lead to far more grave consequences – a Libya-style no-fly zone over Ukraine, involving the shooting down of Russian aircraft by NATO, which would undoubtedly trigger a catastrophic third world war involving the use of nuclear weapons.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, a newfound darling of the Western media since their coverage of the Russian intervention began, has repeatedly called for the implementation of a no-fly zone over his countries’ skies. World Economic Forum-linked Ukrainian activist Daria Kaleniuk went viral with her plea for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to intervene militarily against Russian forces, and a recent poll by corporate media outlet Reuters found that 74% of Americans supported a no-fly zone over Ukraine – with it remaining unclear on whether those polled were aware of the nuclear apocalypse that such a measure would entail.

Despite this push for Western military intervention in Ukraine, US President Joe BidenBoris Johnson and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg have made it clear that such a measure is off the table, each citing the global nuclear conflict that would undoubtedly follow as the reason. Though this may seem a reason to be optimistic that the current Ukraine crisis won’t develop into World War III, it does not however rule out the far more hawkish members of the regime-change lobby seeking to carry out a false flag operation in Ukraine, one with the intention of implicating Moscow, and to push public and political opinion even more towards support for a NATO intervention, a tactic with very recent usage.

In 2017, the Syrian Arab Republic had been in the six-year-long grip of a Western-backed regime change operation launched in response to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad’s 2009 refusal to allow US-allied Qatar to build a pipeline through his country, one that would have undermined his relationship with key-ally Russia. Like the aforementioned Operation Cyclone, Timber Sycamore would see the arming, funding and training of Wahhabi terrorist groups by the West and its allies, with the intention of removing Assad’s secular government and replacing it with a Western-friendly leadership.

In June 2013, Iran and Hezbollah would intervene in the ensuing proxy war at the request of the Syrian government, providing a key role in assisting Damascus in repelling the Western-backed terrorist campaign. What would perhaps be the most decisive factor in turning the tide of the conflict in the Arab Republic’s favor, however, would come in September 2015 – a Russian air campaign, again at the request of the Syrian government, targeting the terrorist groups, allowing Damascus to retake the vast swathes of Syrian territory which had come under their control, such as the key city of Aleppo.

With the Syrian regime-change operation not going as planned, Washington’s Neocons would soon resort to desperate – and reckless – measures.

On the 4th of April 2017, a false flag chemical attack took place in the Syrian town of Khan Shaykhun, the blame immediately being placed on Damascus and resulting in the then-US administration of Donald Trump launching cruise missile strikes on a Syrian government airbase three days later. Washington’s action was a highly provocative action, though one that just stopped short of the full-scale military intervention that the regime-change lobby had clamored for. Undeterred, the same tactic would be carried out a year later in the city of Douma, which again would result in the US, Britain and France launching airstrikes against Syrian government targets, also just stopping short of a full-scale intervention.

This is not to discount the grave seriousness of NATO launching a military strike against a Russian ally and the potential consequences that that action could have entailed. Nevertheless, should a similar false flag operation take place in Ukraine, perhaps also involving chemical weapons or a nuclear reactor as Moscow itself has warned of in recent days, even a ‘limited’ strike against Russian military infrastructure would immediately place the world on an irreversible path to the gravest consequence of all – nuclear war.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Why West brings up the old Afghan scenario to confront Russia in Ukraine

4 Mar 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Naseh Shaker 

A group of 10 special operations forces veterans is staging in Poland and preparing to cross into Ukraine.

“Assisting guerrillas to maim and kill Russian soldiers might well create an irreparable breach between Russia and the West”

In February 1989, the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan where the US-backed ‘Islamists’ were confronting the Soviet Union between 1979-89. However, after the defeat of western-backed terrorists fighting the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad in Syria at the hands of the Syrian Army, it seems the West is going to arm civilian Ukrainians and veteran NATO foreign fighters to confront Russia in Ukraine.

“The US and its satellites invaded and destroyed Afghanistan. After 20 years, they withdrew in disorder,” Michael Springmann, author of “Goodbye Europe? Hello, Chaos? Merkel’s Migrant Bomb,” told Al-Mayadeen English.

“Prior to sending regular forces, President Jimmy Carter and National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski spent vast sums of money to draw the Soviets in and recruited terrorists from all over to fight them in a Guerilla war,” said Springmann.

He added, “If they could do the same in Ukraine, the Americans and Europeans would be happy, [but that] will cost them dearly.”

“Islamists were not more controllable”

Asked why the West is recruiting veteran NATO fighters not Islamists to fight Russia in Ukraine, Springmann said, “the West, especially the US, are tied to Zelenskyy & Groysman the PM…”

“… And it was Nuland [undersecretary for political affairs] who helped overthrow the legitimate Ukrainian government in 2014.”

“However, I would not say they are not recruiting Islamists … I think they want more control over mercenary actions if westerners are used,” Springmann, a former diplomat to Saudi Arabia, told Al-Mayadeen English.

“Illegal under US law”

On Feb 27, the BuzzFeedNews reported that “a group of 10 special operations forces veterans is staging in Poland and preparing to cross into Ukraine, where they plan to take up President Volodymyr Zelensky on his offer to ‘join the defense of Ukraine, Europe, and the world,'” according to a US Army veteran arranging their passage.

BuzzFeedNews reported the group is composed of “six US citizens, three Brits, and a German, who are NATO-trained and experienced in close combat and counterterrorism,” without giving their names. It also pointed out that “they want to be among the first to officially join the new International Legion of the Territorial Defense of Ukraine that Zelensky announced Sunday.”

Two former American infantry officers, according to BuzzFeedNews, are also making plans to come to Ukraine to provide “leadership” for the group.

“Sending Americans and others to fight Russians and train Ukrainians is illegal under US law since the 19th century I think,” Springmann told Al Mayadeen English. “It’s like the start of Vietnam war with ‘advisors’ helping ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam)”

Asked if the West is preparing to recruit Islamists to fight in Ukraine, or did the defeat in Syria make the West decide not to bring them on the table, so they are recruiting NATO veterans instead, Springmann said the Islamists in Syria are “still aided by the US.”

“I would assume that is the case, recruiting more crazies [NATO veterans] to fight Russia… Although Chechens are seeking to join Russia,” Springmann told Al Mayadeen English in a Skype interview.

US and UK want to drain European Union 

Adel Al-Assar, a Yemeni journalist, told Al Mayadeen English that “Washington and Britain are seeking from what is happening in Ukraine not only to drain Russia militarily and economically but also to drain the European Union that shares close economic and political relations with Russia.”

These relations, according to Al-Assar, “has angered Washington and doubled its fears about Europe’s tendency toward Moscow. Today, it is investing in the Ukrainian crisis to destroy European-Russian relations and bring them to the stage of economic war from whose effects both sides will suffer, and this lies in the interest of America and Britain that seek to impose their hegemony on European politics.”

Al-Assar said the West arming of civilians and recruiting Veteran NATO fighters as paramilitaries will not affect Russia for two reasons.

“The first is that Russia did not implement the military operation in Ukraine in a hurry, but came according to well-thought-out plans in which Russia’s leaders anticipated all possibilities,” Al-Assar told Al Mayadeen English. “The second reason is that Washington is seeking, by declaring the recruitment of groups to fight Russia in Ukraine, to raise the fears of Russian leaders of a repeat of the Afghanistan scenario.”

“All the military data and the composition of the population in Ukraine indicate that Russia will not be affected by the US-British plans that seek to drain it militarily and economically or undermine its internal security.

“In addition, the sanctions imposed by Washington and London, which forced the European Union countries to follow suit, will not affect Russia as much as the European Union countries will suffer from their effects on the short and long terms.”

“Arming civilians makes them legitimate targets for Russian soldiers”

The Guardian reported on February 20 that “secret discussions are underway between western allies over how to arm what they expect to be fierce Ukrainian resistance in the event of a Russian invasion that topples the Kiev government.” 

It also pointed out that arming Ukrainians was underscored in a meeting between Boris Johnson and Volodymyr Zelensky on the margins of the Munich Conference where “the two men predicted a fierce resistance to an invasion.”

The Guardian stressed that “similar discussions have been taking place in the US, where reports suggest the country’s national security advisor, Jake Sullivan, has told senators that the US is willing to arm a resistance and is not going to accept a Russian military victory that erases the principles of national self-determination.”

The West, including the United States of America and the UK, has been supporting terrorists to fight the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad, in an attempt to repeat the scenario of Afghanistan in Syria but in vain.

“Arming civilians makes them legitimate targets for Russian soldiers,” Springmann told Al Mayadeen English.

‘Our history with proxy wars is littered with folly’

Responsible Statecraft published an article by Ted Galen Carpenter, a senior fellow in defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute in Washington, with the title “Why arming Ukrainian ‘resistance fighters’ would be a really bad idea. He said that the US is under “pressure to get involved if there is a full-scale invasion, but our history with proxy wars is littered with folly.”

“The current front-runner for a more robust response is a scheme to fund and arm Ukrainian fighters to mount a resistance to a Russian occupation. Indeed, there are news reports that CIA operatives already are busily training Ukrainian paramilitary units,” wrote Carpenter.

“It is a spectacularly bad idea. Assisting guerrillas to maim and kill Russian soldiers might well create an irreparable breach between Russia and the West. The new cold war already is chilly enough without adding to the dangerous tensions.”

Zach Dorfman, the National Security Correspondent of Yahoo News, published on January 13 a report titled “CIA-trained Ukrainian paramilitaries may take central role if Russia invades.”

“If the Russians launch a new invasion, there’s going to be people who make their life miserable,” a former senior intelligence official told Yahoo News.

Yahoo News‘ report added that “the CIA-trained paramilitaries will organize the resistance using the specialized training they’ve received.”

“All that stuff that happened to us in Afghanistan,” said the former senior intelligence official, “they can expect to see that in spades with these guys.”

Asked if Russia can win this battle, Springmann said Russia’s fighting in Syria against terrorists has gained it an experience.

“I think Russian experience in the Middle East, as well as its upgraded equipment and training, will aid in speedy Ukrainian surrender in the Donbass region in the east where the majority are Russian and have been attacked by Kiev for years,” Springmann told Al Mayadeen English

“NATO is responsible for this war”

Michael Jones, editor of Culture Wars Magazine, told Al Mayadeen English that the war in Ukraine was created by “Jewish Neoconservatives like Victoria Nuland, wife of Rober Kagan, because of ancestral Jewish animosity against Russia. NATO is responsible for this war, not Russia.”

“… Zelensky cannot win the war by arming civilians,” Jones told Al Mayadeen English in an email interview. “But he can get a lot of foolish people killed this way. He probably knows that, and he is probably planning to blame those casualties on the Russians.”

“Russia will fight the Banderites in the same way they fought the Chechen uprising in Grozny,” Jones noted.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Everyone Loses in the Conflict Over Ukraine

March 02, 2022

By Ralph Nader

Global Research,

OpEdNews.com 1 March 2022

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Today, the dangers of military escalation are beyond description.

What is now happening in Ukraine has serious geopolitical implications. It could lead us into a World War III scenario.

It is important that a peace process be initiated with a view to preventing escalation. 

Global Research condemns Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

A Bilateral Peace Agreement is required.


When two scorpions are in a bottle, they both lose. This is the preventable danger that is growing daily with no end game in sight between the two nuclear superpowers led by dictator Vladimir Putin and de facto sole decider Joe Biden.

Putin’s first argument is Washington invented the model of aggressive, illegal invasions, and destruction of distant countries, that never threatened U.S. security.

Millions have died, been injured, and sickened in defenseless countries attacked by U.S. armed forces. George W. Bush and Dick Cheney killed over a million innocent Iraqis and devastated the country in so many ways that scholars called it a “sociocide.”

Putin’s second argument is that Russia is being threatened on its sensitive western border which had been invaded twice by Germany and caused the loss of 50 million Russian lives.

Soon after the Soviet Union collapsed the West’s military alliance against Russia began moving east. Under Bill Clinton, NATO (The North Atlantic Treaty Organization) signed up Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic in 1999, leading to major arms sales by the U.S. giant munitions corporations.

More recently, Putin sees U.S. soldiers in these countries, ever closer U.S. missile launchers, U.S.-led joint naval exercises in the Baltic Sea, and intimations that Ukraine and Georgia could soon join NATO. Imagine if the Russians were to have such a military presence around the U.S. borders.

Even often hawkish New York Times columnists – Thomas Friedman and Bret Stephens – made this point this week about the brazen U.S. history of military hypocrisy while tearing into Putin. Stephens brought up the Monroe Doctrine over the entire Western Hemisphere in raising repeatedly the question, “Who are We?”

The chess game between Russia and the West has become more deadly with Putin’s military moves followed by immediate Western sanctions against some Russian banks and oligarchs close to Putin.

Travel bans and freezing the completion of the second major natural gas pipeline from Russia to Germany are in place with promises of much more severe economic retaliation by Biden.

These sanctions can become a two-way street. Western Europe needs Russian oil and gas, Russian wheat, and essential Russian minerals such as lithium, cobalt, and nickel.

Sanctions against Russia will soon boomerang in terms of higher oil and gas prices for Europeans and Americans, more inflation, worsening supply chains, and the dreaded “economic uncertainty” afflicting stock markets and consumer spending.

The corporate global economy gave us interdependence on other nations instead of domestic self-reliance under the framework of corporate-managed free trade agreements.

Repeating 1970s Strategy of Grand Chess-Master Brzezinski: Biden Appears to Have Induced Russian Invasion of Ukraine to Bankrupt Russia’s Economy and Advance Regime Change

So how many billions of dollars in costs and a weakened economy will Joe Biden tolerate as the price of anti-Putin sanctions that will blowback on the American people?

How much suffering will he tolerate being inflicted on the long-suffering Russian people? What will be the impact on the civilian population of more severe sanctions? And who is he to talk as if he doesn’t have to be authorized by Congress to go further into this state of belligerence, short of sending soldiers, which he said he would not do?

Is Congress to be left as a cheerleader, washing its hands of its constitutional oversight and foreign policy duties?

Also, watch Republicans and Democrats in Congress unify to whoop through more money for the bloated military budget as pointed out by military analyst, Michael Klare.

What energy will be left for Biden’s pending “Build Back Better” infrastructure, social safety net, and climate crisis legislation?

In recent weeks, the State Department said it recognizes Russia’s legitimate security concerns but not its expansionism. Well, what is wrong with a ceasefire followed by support for a treaty “guaranteeing neutrality for Ukraine similar to the enforced neutrality for Austria since the Cold War’s early years,” as Nation publisher and Russia specialist Katrina Vanden Heuvel urged. (See: Katrina vanden Heuvel’s Washington Post article and her recent Nation piece).

Putin, unable to get over the breakup of the Soviet Union probably has imperial ambitions to dominate in Russia’s backyard. Biden has inherited and accepted the U.S. Empire’s ambitions in many other nation’s backyards.

Events have polarized this conflict over Ukraine which is not a security interest for the U.S., into two dominant egos – Putin and Biden – neither of whom want to appear weak or to back down.

This is a dangerous recipe for an out-of-control escalation, much as it was in the lead-up to World War I. Neither the people nor the parliaments mattered then as seems to be the case today.

Putin isn’t likely to make a cost-benefit assessment of each day’s militarism. But Biden better do so. Otherwise, he will be managed by Putin’s daily moves, instead of insisting on serious negotiations.

The Minsk II Peace Accords of February 2015 brokered by Germany, France, and the United Nations, that Russia and Ukraine agreed to before falling apart due to disagreements over who should take the first steps still makes for a useful framework.

It is too late to revisit the accords to stop the invasion but it should be proposed to introduce a climate for waging peace.

Already, New York Governor Kathy Hochul has spoken about an increase in cyberattacks and ransomware demands in her state in recent weeks.

Has Biden put that rising certainty in his self-described decades-long foreign policy expertise?

Watch out for what you can’t stop, Joe.

*

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Sergey Karaganov: Russia’s new foreign policy, the Putin Doctrine

23 Feb, 2022

Moscow’s confrontation with NATO is just the start

By Professor Sergey Karaganov, honorary chairman of Russia’s Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, and academic supervisor at the School of International Economics and Foreign Affairs Higher School of Economics (HSE) in Moscow

Sergey Karaganov: Russia’s new foreign policy, the Putin Doctrine
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his address to the nation at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21, 2022. © AFP / Alexey NIKOLSKY

It seems like Russia has entered a new era of its foreign policy – a ‘constructive destruction’, let’s call it, of the previous model of relations with the West. Parts of this new way of thinking have been seen over the last 15 years – starting with Vladimir Putin’s famous Munich speech in 2007 – but much is only just becoming clear now. At the same time, lackluster efforts to integrate into the western system, while maintaining a doggedly defensive attitude, has remained the general trend in Russia’s politics and rhetoric.

Constructive destruction is not aggressive. Russia maintains it isn’t going to attack anyone or blow them up. It simply doesn’t need to. The outside world provides Russia with more and more geopolitical opportunities for medium-term development as it is. With one big exception. NATO’s expansion and formal or informal inclusion of Ukraine poses a risk to the country’s security that Moscow simply won’t accept.

For now, the West is on course to a slow but inevitable decay, both in terms of internal and external affairs and even the economy. And this is precisely why it has started this new Cold War after almost five hundred years of domination in world politics, the economy, and culture. Especially after its decisive victory in the 1990s to mid-2000s. I believe [1] it will most likely lose, stepping down as the global leader and becoming a more reasonable partner. And not a moment too soon: Russia will need to balance relations with a friendly, but increasingly more powerful China.

Presently, the West desperately tries to defend against this with aggressive rhetoric. It tries to consolidate, playing its last trump cards to reverse this trend. One of those is trying to use Ukraine to damage and neuter Russia. It’s important to prevent these convulsive attempts from transforming into a full-fledged standoff and to counter the current US and NATO policies. They are counterproductive and dangerous, though relatively undemanding for the initiators. We are yet to convince the West that it is only hurting itself.

Another trump card is the West’s dominating role in the existing Euro-Atlantic security system established at a time when Russia was seriously weakened following the Cold War. There’s merit in gradually erasing this system, primarily by refusing to take part in it and play by its obsolete rules, which are inherently disadvantageous to us. For Russia, the western track should become secondary to its Eurasian diplomacy. Maintaining constructive relations with the countries in the western part of the continent may ease the integration into Greater Eurasia for Russia. The old system is in the way, though, and so it should be dismantled.

The critical next step to creating a new system (aside from dismantling the old one) is ‘uniting the lands’. It’s a necessity for Moscow, not a whim. 

It would be nice if we had more time to do this. But history shows that, since the collapse of the USSR 30 years ago, few post-Soviet nations have managed to become truly independent. And some may never even get there, for various reasons. This is a subject for a future analysis. Right now, I can only point out the obvious: Most local elites don’t have the historical or cultural experience of state-building. They’ve never been able to become the core of the nation – they didn’t have enough time for this. When the shared intellectual and cultural space disappeared, it hurt small countries the most. The new opportunities to build ties with the West turned out to be no replacement. Those who have found themselves at the helm of such nations have been selling their country for their own benefit, because there’s been no national idea to fight for.

The majority of those countries will either follow the example of the Baltic states, accepting external control, or continue to spiral out of control, which in some cases may be extremely dangerous.

The question is: How to ‘unite’ the nations in the most efficient and beneficial way for Russia, taking into account the tsarist and Soviet experience, when the sphere of influence was extended beyond any reasonable limits and then kept together at the expense of core Russian peoples?

Let’s leave the discussion about the ‘unification’ that history is forcing on us for another day. This time, let’s focus on the objective need to make a tough decision and adopt the ‘constructive destruction’ policy.

The milestones we passed

Today, we see the inception of the fourth era of Russia’s foreign policy. The first one started in the late 1980s, and it was a time of weakness and delusions. The nation had lost the will to fight, people wanted to believe democracy and the West would come and save them [2]. It all ended in 1999 after the first waves of NATO expansion, seen by Russians as a backstabbing move, when the West tore apart what was left of Yugoslavia.

Then Russia started to get up off its knees and rebuild, stealthily and covertly, while appearing friendly and humbled. The US withdrawing from the ABM Treaty signaled its intention to regain its strategic dominance, so the still broke Russia made a fateful decision to develop weapon systems to challenge American aspirations. The Munich speech, the Georgian War, and the army reform, conducted amid a global economic crisis that spelled the end of the western liberal globalist imperialism (the term coined by a prominent expert on international affairs, Richard Sakwa) marked the new goal for Russian foreign policy – to once again become a leading global power that can defend its sovereignty and interests. This was followed by the events in Crimea, Syria, the military build-up, and blocking the West from interfering in Russia’s domestic affairs, rooting out from the public service those who partnered with the West to the disadvantage of their homeland, including by a masterful use of the West’s reaction to those developments. As the tensions keep growing, looking up to the West and keeping assets there becomes increasingly less lucrative.

China’s incredible rise and becoming de-facto allies with Beijing starting in the 2010s, the pivot to the East, and the multidimensional crisis that enveloped the West led to a great shift in political and geoeconomic balance in favor of Russia. This is especially pronounced in Europe. Only a decade ago, the EU saw Russia as a backward and weak outskirts of the continent trying to contend with major powers. Now, it is desperately trying to cling to the geopolitical and geoeconomic independence that is slipping through its fingers.

The ‘back to greatness’ period ended around 2017 to 2018. After that, Russia hit a plateau. The modernization continued, but the weak economy threatened to negate its achievements. People (myself included) were frustrated, fearing that Russia once again was going to “snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.” But that turned out to be another build-up period, primarily in terms of defense capabilities.

Russia has gotten ahead, making sure that for the next decade, it will be relatively invulnerable strategically and capable of “dominating in an escalation scenario” in case of conflicts in the regions within its sphere of interests.

The ultimatum that Russia issued to the US and NATO at the end of 2021, demanding they stop developing military infrastructure near the Russian borders and expansion to the east, marked the start of the ‘constructive destruction’. The goal is not simply to stop the flagging, albeit really dangerous inertia of the West’s geostrategic push, but also to start laying the foundation for a new kind of relations between Russia and the West, different from what we settled on in the 1990s.

Russia’s military capabilities, the returning sense of moral righteousness, lessons learned from past mistakes, and a close alliance with China could mean that the West, which chose the role of an adversary, will start being reasonable, even if not all the time. Then, in a decade or sooner, I hope, a new system of international security and cooperation will be built that will include the whole Greater Eurasia this time, and it will be based on UN principles and international law, not unilateral ‘rules’ that the West has been trying to impose on the world in recent decades.

Correcting mistakes

Before I go any further, let me say that I think very highly of Russian diplomacy – it’s been absolutely brilliant in the past 25 years. Moscow was dealt a weak hand but managed to play a great game nevertheless. First, it didn’t let the West ‘finish it off’. Russia maintained its formal status of a great country, retaining permanent membership in the UN Security Council and keeping nuclear arsenals. Then it gradually improved its global standing by leveraging the weaknesses of its rivals and the strengths of its partners. Building a strong friendship with China has been a major achievement. Russia has some geopolitical advantages that the Soviet Union didn’t have. Unless, of course, it goes back to the aspirations of becoming a global superpower, which eventually ruined the USSR.  

However, we shouldn’t forget the mistakes we’ve made so we don’t repeat them. It was our laziness, weakness, and bureaucratic inertia that helped create and keep afloat the unjust and unstable system of European security that we have today.

The beautifully-worded Charter of Paris for a New Europe that was signed in 1990 had a statement about freedom of association – countries could choose their allies, something that would’ve been impossible under the 1975 Helsinki Declaration. Since the Warsaw Pact was running on fumes at that point, this clause meant that NATO would be free to expand. This is the document everyone keeps referring to, even in Russia. Back in 1990, however, NATO could at least be considered a “defense” organization. The alliance and most of its members have launched a number of aggressive military campaigns since then – against the remnants of Yugoslavia, as well as in Iraq and Libya.  

After a heart-to-heart chat with Lech Walesa in 1993, Boris Yeltsin signed a document where it stated that Russia “understood Poland’s plan to join NATO.” When Andrey Kozyrev, Russia’s foreign minister at the time, learned about NATO’s expansion plans in 1994, he began a bargaining process on Russia’s behalf without consulting the president. The other side took it as a sign that Russia was OK with the general concept, since it was trying to negotiate acceptable terms. In 1995, Moscow stepped on the brakes, but it was too late – the dam burst and swept away any reservations about the West’s expansion efforts. 

In 1997, Russia, being economically weak and completely dependent on the West, signed the Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security with NATO. Moscow was able to compel certain concessions from the West, like the pledge not to deploy large military units to the new member states. NATO has been consistently violating this obligation. Another agreement was to keep these territories free of nuclear weapons. The US would not have wanted it anyway, because it had been trying to distance itself from a potential nuclear conflict in Europe as much as possible (despite their allies’ wishes), since it would undoubtedly cause a nuclear strike against America. In reality, the document legitimized NATO’s expansion.  

There were other mistakes – not as major but extremely painful nevertheless. Russia participated in the Partnership for Peace program, the sole purpose of which was to make it look like NATO was prepared to listen to Moscow, but in reality, the alliance was using the project to justify its existence and further expansion. Another frustrating misstep was our involvement in the NATO-Russia Council after the Yugoslavia aggression. The topics discussed at that level desperately lacked substance. They should’ve focused on the truly significant issue – restraining the alliance’s expansion and the buildup of its military infrastructure near the Russian borders. Sadly, this never made it to the agenda. The Council continued to operate even after the majority of NATO members started a war in Iraq and then Libya in 2011.  

READ MORE: Ukraine asks for help and mulls retaliation against Russia: Six key takeaways from Zelensky’s speech

It is very unfortunate that we never got the nerve to openly say it – NATO had become an aggressor that committed numerous war crimes. This would’ve been a sobering truth for various political circles in Europe, like in Finland and Sweden for example, where some are considering the advantages of joining the organization. And all the others for that matter, with their mantra about NATO being a defense and deterrence alliance that needs to be further consolidated so it can stand against imaginary enemies. 

I understand those in the West who are used to the existing system that allows the Americans to buy the obedience of their junior partners, and not just in terms of military support, while these allies can save on security expenses by selling part of their sovereignty. But what do we gain from this system? Especially now that it’s become obvious that it breeds and escalates confrontation at our western borders and in the whole world. 

NATO feeds off forced confrontation, and the longer the organization exists, the worse this confrontation will be. 

The bloc is a threat to its members as well. While provoking confrontation, it doesn’t actually guarantee protection. It is not true that Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty warrants collective defense if one ally is attacked. This article doesn’t say that this is automatically guaranteed. I am familiar with the history of the bloc and the discussions in America regarding its establishment. I know for a fact that the US will never deploy nuclear weapons to “protect” its allies if there is conflict with a nuclear state. 

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) is also outdated. It is dominated by NATO and the EU that use the organization to drag out the confrontation and impose the West’s political values and standards on everyone else. Fortunately, this policy is becoming less and less effective. In the mid-2010s I had the chance to work with the OSCE Panel of Eminent Persons (what a name!), which was supposed to develop a new mandate for the organization. And if I had my doubts about the OSCE’s effectiveness before that, this experience convinced me that it is an extremely destructive institution. It’s an antiquated organization with a mission to preserve things that are obsolete. In the 1990s, it served as an instrument of burying any attempt made by Russia or others to create a common European security system; in the 2000s, the so-called Corfu Process bogged down Russia’s new security initiative.

Practically all UN institutions have been squeezed out of the continent, including the UN Economic Commission for Europe, its Human Rights Council and Security Council. Once upon a time, the OSCE was viewed as a useful organization that would promote the UN system and principles in a key subcontinent. That didn’t happen. 

As for NATO, it is very clear what we should do. We need to undermine the bloc’s moral and political legitimacy and refuse any institutional partnership, since its counterproductivity is obvious. Only the military should continue to communicate, but as an auxiliary channel that would supplement dialogue with the DOD and defense ministries of leading European nations. After all, it’s not Brussels that makes strategically important decisions. 

The same policy could be adopted when it comes to the OSCE. Yes, there is a difference, because even though this is a destructive organization, it never initiated any wars, destabilization, or killings. So we need to keep our involvement in this format to a minimum. Some say that this is the only context that provides the Russian foreign minister with a chance to see his counterparts. That is not true. The UN can offer an even better context. Bilateral talks are much more effective anyway, because it is easier for the bloc to hijack the agenda when there is a crowd. Sending observers and peacekeepers through the UN would also make a lot more sense.  

The limited article format does not allow me to dwell on specific policies for each European organization, like the Council of Europe for example. But I would define the general principle this way – we partner where we see benefits for ourselves and keep our distance otherwise. 

Thirty years under the current system of European institutions proved that continuing with it would be detrimental. Russia doesn’t benefit in any way from Europe’s disposition towards breeding and escalating confrontation or even posing military threat to the subcontinent and the whole world. Back in the day, we could dream that Europe would help us bolster security, as well as political and economic modernization. Instead, they are undermining security, so why would we copy the West’s dysfunctional and deteriorating political system? Do we really need these new values that they have adopted? 

We will have to limit the expansion by refusing to cooperate within an eroding system. Hopefully, by taking a firm stand and leaving our civilization neighbors from the West to their own devices, we will actually help them. The elites may return to a less suicidal policy that would be safer for everyone. Of course, we have to be smart about taking ourselves out of the equation and make sure to minimize the collateral damage that the failing system will inevitably cause. But maintaining it in its current form is simply dangerous. 

Policies for tomorrow’s Russia

As the existing global order continues to crumble, it seems that the most prudent course for Russia would be to sit it out for as long as possible – to take cover within the walls of its ‘neo-isolationist fortress’ and deal with domestic matters. But this time, history demands that we take action. Many of my suggestions with respect to the foreign policy approach I have tentatively called ‘constructive destruction’ naturally emerge from the analysis presented above.

There is no need to interfere or to try to influence the internal dynamics of the West, whose elites are desperate enough to start a new cold war against Russia. What we should do instead is use various foreign policy instruments – including military ones – to establish certain red lines. Meanwhile, as the Western system continues to steer towards moral, political, and economic degradation, non-Western powers (with Russia as a major player) will inevitably see their geo-political, geo-economic and geo-ideological positions strengthen. 

READ MORE: UK sanctions Putin’s ‘inner circle’ over Donbass

Our Western partners predictably try to squelch Russia’s calls for security guarantees and take advantage of the ongoing diplomatic process in order to extend the lifespan of their own institutions. There is no need to give up dialogue or cooperation in matters of trade, politics, culture, education, and healthcare, whenever it’s useful. But we must also use the time we’ve got to ramp up military-political, psychological, and even military-technical pressure – not so much on Ukraine, whose people have been turned into cannon fodder for a new Cold War – but on the collective West, in order to force it to change its mind and step back from the policies it has pursued for the past several decades. There is nothing to fear about the confrontation escalating: We saw tensions grow even as Russia was trying to appease the Western world. What we should do is prepare for a stronger pushback from the West; also, Russia should be able to offer the world a long-term alternative – a new political framework based on peace and cooperation.

The West can try to intimidate us with devastating sanctions – but we are also capable of deterring the West with our own threat of an asymmetrical response, one that would cripple Western economies and disrupt whole societies.

Naturally, it is useful to remind our partners, from time to time, that there exists a mutually beneficial alternative to all that.

If Russia carries out reasonable but assertive policies (domestically, too), it will successfully (and relatively peacefully) overcome the latest surge of Western hostility. As I have written before, we stand a good chance of winning this Cold War.

What also inspires optimism is Russia’s own past record: We have more than once managed to tame the imperial ambitions of foreign powers – for our own good, and for the good of humanity, as a whole. Russia was able to transform would-be empires into tame and relatively harmless neighbors: Sweden after the Battle of Poltava, France after Borodino, Germany after Stalingrad and Berlin.

We can find a slogan for the new Russian policy toward the West in a verse from Alexander Blok’s ‘The Scythians’, a brilliant poem that seems especially relevant today: “Come join us, then! Leave war and war’s alarms, / And grasp the hand of peace and amity. / While still there’s time, Comrades, lay down your arms! / Let us unite in true fraternity!”

While attempting to heal our relations with the West (even if that requires some bitter medicine), we must remember that, while culturally close to us, the Western world is running out of time – in fact, it has been for two decades now. It is essentially in damage control mode, seeking cooperation whenever possible. The real prospects and challenges of our present and future lie with the East and the South. Taking a harder line with Western nations must not distract Russia from maintaining its pivot to the East. And we have seen this pivot slow down in the past two or three years, especially when it comes to developing territories beyond the Ural Mountains.

We must not allow Ukraine to become a security threat to Russia. That said, it would be counterproductive to spend too many administrative and political (not to mention economic) resources on it. Russia must learn to actively manage this volatile situation, keep it within limits. Most of Ukraine has been neutered by its own anti-national elite, corrupted by the West, and infected with the pathogen of militant nationalism.

It would be much more effective to invest in the East, in the development of Siberia. By creating favorable working and living conditions, we will attract not only Russian citizens, but also people from the other parts of the former Russian Empire, including the Ukrainians. The latter have, historically, contributed a great deal to the development of Siberia.

Let me reiterate a point from my other articles: It was the incorporation of Siberia under Ivan the Terrible that made Russia a great power, not the accession of Ukraine under Aleksey Mikhaylovich, known under the moniker ‘the most peaceful’. It is high time we stopped repeating Zbigniew Brzezinski’s disingenuous – and so strikingly Polish – assertion that Russia cannot be a great power without Ukraine. The opposite is much closer to the truth: Russia cannot be a great power when it is burdened by an increasingly unwieldy Ukraine – a political entity created by Lenin which later expanded westward under Stalin.

The most promising path for Russia lies with the development and strengthening of ties with China. A partnership with Beijing would multiply the potential of both countries many times over. If the West carries on with its bitterly hostile policies, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to consider a temporary five-year defense alliance with China. Naturally, one should also be careful not to get ‘dizzy with success’ on the China track, so as not to return to the medieval model of China’s Middle Kingdom, which grew by turning its neighbors into vassals. We should help Beijing wherever we can to keep it from suffering even a momentary defeat in the new Cold War unleashed by the West. That defeat would weaken us, too. Besides, we know all too well what the West transforms into when it thinks it is winning. It took some harsh remedies to treat America’s hangover after it got drunk with power in the 1990s.

Clearly, an East-oriented policy must not focus solely on China. Both the East and the South are on the rise in global politics, economics, and culture, which is partly due to our undermining of the West’s military superiority – the primary source of its 500-year hegemony.

When the time comes to establish a new system of European security to replace the dangerously outdated existing one, it must be done within the framework of a greater Eurasian project. Nothing worthwhile can be born out of the old Euro-Atlantic system.

It is self-evident that success requires the development and modernization of the country’s economic, technological, and scientific potential – all pillars of a country’s military power, which remains the backbone of any nation’s sovereignty and security. Russia cannot be successful without improving the quality of life for the majority of its people: This includes overall prosperity, healthcare, education, and the environment. 

The restriction of political freedoms, which is inevitable when confronting the collective West, must by no means extend to the intellectual sphere. This is difficult, but achievable. For the talented, creatively-minded part of the population who are ready to serve their country, we must preserve as much intellectual freedom as possible. Scientific development through Soviet-style ‘sharashkas’ (research and development laboratories operating within the Soviet labor camp system) is not something that would work in the modern world. Freedom enhances the talents of Russian people, and inventiveness runs in our blood. Even in foreign policy, the freedom from ideological constraints that we enjoy offers us massive advantages compared to our more close-minded neighbors. History teaches us that the brutal restriction of freedom of thought imposed by the Communist regime on its people led the Soviet Union to ruin. Preserving personal freedom is an essential condition for any nation’s development.

READ MORE: Global stocks sink on fears of full-blown conflict between Russia, Ukraine

If we want to grow as a society and be victorious, it is absolutely vital that we develop a spiritual backbone – a national idea, an ideology that unites and shines the way forward. It is a fundamental truth that great nations cannot be truly great without such an idea at their core. This is part of the tragedy that happened to us in the 1970s and 1980s. Hopefully, the resistance of the ruling elites to the advancement of a new ideology, rooted in the pains of the communist era, is beginning to fade. Vladimir Putin’s speech at the October 2021 annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club was a powerful reassuring signal in that respect.

Like the ever-growing number of Russian philosophers and authors, I have put forward my own vision of the ‘Russian idea’[3]. (I apologize for having to reference my own publications again – it is an inevitable side effect of having to stick to the format).

Questions for the future

And now let’s discuss a significant, yet mostly overlooked aspect of the new policy that needs to be addressed. We need to dismiss and reform the obsolete and often harmful ideological foundation of our social sciences and public life for this new policy to get implemented, let alone succeed.

This doesn’t mean we have to reject once again the advancements in political science, economy, and foreign affairs of our predecessors. The Bolsheviks tried to dump the social ideas of tsarist Russia – everybody knows how this played out. We rejected Marxism and were happy about it. Now, fed up with other tenets, we realize we were too impatient with it. Marx, Engels, and Lenin had sound ideas in their theory of imperialism we could use.

Social sciences that study the ways of public and private life have to take into account national context, however inclusive it wants to appear. It stems from the national history and ultimately is aimed to help the nations and/or their government and elites. The mindless application of solutions valid in one country to another are fruitless and only create abominations.

We need to start working towards intellectual independence after we achieve military security and political and economic sovereignty. In the new world, it’s compulsory to achieve development and exert influence. Mikhail Remizov, a prominent Russian political scientist, was the first, as far as I know, to call this ‘intellectual decolonization’.

Having spent decades in the shadow of imported Marxism, we’ve begun a transition to yet another foreign ideology of liberal democracy in economics and political science and, to certain extent, even in foreign policy and defense. This fascination has done us no good – we’ve lost land, technology, and people. In the mid-2000s, we started to exercise our sovereignty, but had to rely on our instincts rather than clear national (again – it cannot be anything else) scientific and ideological principles.

We still don’t have the courage to acknowledge that the scientific and ideological worldview we’ve had for the last forty to fifty years is obsolete and/or was intended to serve foreign elites.

To illustrate this point, here are a few randomly picked questions from my very long list.

I’ll start with existential issues, purely philosophical ones. What comes first in humans, the spirit or the matter? And in the more mundane political sense – what drives people and states in the modern world? To common Marxists and liberals, the answer is the economy. Just remember that until recently Bill Clinton’s famous “It’s the economy, stupid” was thought to be an axiom. But people seek something greater when the basic need for food is satisfied. Love for their family, their homeland, desire for national dignity, personal freedoms, power, and fame. The hierarchy of needs has been well known to us since Maslow introduced it in the 1940–50s in his famous pyramid. Modern capitalism, however, twisted it, forcing ever-expanding consumption via traditional media at first and all-encompassing digital networks later – for rich and poor, each according to their ability.

What can we do when the modern capitalism deprived of moral or religious foundations incites limitless consumption, breaking down moral and geographic boundaries and comes into conflict with nature, threatening the very existence of our species? We, Russians, understand better than anybody that attempts to get rid of entrepreneurs and capitalists who are driven by the desire to build wealth will have disastrous consequences for society and the environment (the socialist economy model wasn’t exactly environmentally friendly).

What do we do with the latest values of rejecting history, your homeland, gender, and beliefs, as well as aggressive LGBT and ultra-feminist movements? I respect the right to follow them, but I think they’re post-humanist. Should we treat this as just another stage of social evolution? I don’t think so. Should we try to ward it off, limit its spread, and wait till society lives through this moral epidemic? Or should we actively fight it, leading the majority of humanity that adheres to so-called “conservative” values or, to put it simply, normal human values? Should we get into the fight escalating an already dangerous confrontation with the Western elites?

The technological development and increased labor productivity have helped feed the majority of people, but the world itself has slipped into anarchy, and many guiding principles have been lost at the global level. Security concerns, perhaps, are prevailing over the economy once again. Military instruments and the political will might take the lead from now on.

What is military deterrence in the modern world? Is it a threat to cause damage to national and individual assets or foreign assets and information infrastructure to which today’s Western elites are tied so closely? What will become of the Western world if this infrastructure is brought down?

And a related question: What is strategic parity we still talk about today? Is it some foreign nonsense picked by Soviet leaders who sucked their people into an exhausting arms race because of their inferiority complex and June 22, 1941 syndrome? Looks like we are already answering this question, even though we still churn out speeches about equality and symmetrical measures.

And what is this arms control many believe to be instrumental? Is it an attempt to restrain the expensive arms race beneficial to the wealthier economy, to limit the risk of hostilities or something more – a tool to legitimize the race, the development of arms, and the process of unnecessary programs on your opponent? There’s no obvious answer to that.

But let’s go back to the more existential questions.

Is democracy really the pinnacle of political development? Or is it just another tool that helps the elites control society, if we are not talking about Aristotle’s pure democracy (which also has certain limitations)? There are many tools that come and go as society and conditions change. Sometimes we abandon them only to bring them back when the time is right and there’s external and internal demand for them. I’m not calling for boundless authoritarianism or monarchy. I think we have already overdone it with centralization, especially at the municipal government level. But if this is just a tool, shouldn’t we stop pretending that we strive for democracy and put it straight – we want personal freedoms, a prosperous society, security, and national dignity? But how do we justify power to the people then?

Is the state really destined to die off, as Marxists and liberal globalists used to believe, as they dreamed of alliances between transnational corporations, international NGOs (both have been going through nationalization and privatization), and supranational political bodies? We’ll see how long the EU can survive in its current form. Note that I don’t want to say there’s no reason to join national efforts for the greater good, like bringing down expensive custom barriers or introducing joint environmental policies. Or isn’t it better to focus on developing your own state and supporting neighbors while disregarding global problems created by others? Aren’t they going to mess with us if we act this way?

What is the role of land and territories? Is it a dwindling asset, a burden as was believed among political scientists only recently? Or the greatest national treasure, especially in the face of the environmental crisis, climate change, the growing deficit of water and food in some regions and the total lack of it in others?

What should we do then with hundreds of millions of Pakistanis, Indians, Arabs, and others whose lands might soon be uninhabitable? Should we invite them now as the US and Europe began to do in the 1960s, drawing migrants to bring down the cost of local labor and undermine the trade unions? Or should we prepare to defend our territories from the outsiders? In that case, we should abandon all hope to develop democracy, as Israel’s experience with its Arab population shows.

Would developing robotics, which is currently in a sorry state, help compensate for the lack of workforce and make those territories livable again? What is the role of indigenous Russian people in our country, considering their number will inevitably keep shrinking? Given that Russians have historically been an open people, the prospects might be optimistic. But so far it’s unclear.

I can go on and on, especially when it comes to the economy. These questions need to be asked and it’s vital to find answers as soon as possible in order to grow and come out on top. Russia needs a new political economy – free from Marxist and liberal dogmas, but something more than the current pragmatism our foreign policy is based on. It must include forward-oriented idealism, a new Russian ideology incorporating our history and philosophical traditions. This echoes the ideas put forward by the academic Pavel Tsygankov.

READ MORE: Oil pushes toward $100 as Donbass tensions rise

I believe that this is the ultimate goal of all our research in foreign affairs, political science, economics and philosophy. This task is beyond difficult. We can continue contributing to our society and our country only by breaking our old thinking patterns. But to end on an optimistic note, here’s a humorous thought: Isn’t it time to recognize that the subject of our studies – foreign affairs, domestic policies, and the economy – is the result of a creative process involving masses and leaders alike? To recognize that it is, in a way, art? To a large degree, it defies explanation and stems from intuition and talent. And so we are like art experts: We talk about it, identify trends and teach the artists – the masses and the leaders – history, which is useful to them. We often get lost in the theoretical, though, coming up with ideas divorced from reality or distorting it by focusing on separate fragments.

Sometimes we do make history: think Evgeny Primakov or Henry Kissinger. But I’d argue they didn’t care what approaches to this art history they represented. They drew upon their knowledge, personal experience, moral principles, and intuition. I like the idea of us being a type of art expert, and I believe it can make the daunting task of revising the dogmas a little easier.

This article was first published online by the Russia in Global Affairs journal.

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.

بوتين يقلب الطاولة ويرسم خريطة أوروبا

 ناصر قنديل

بنت واشنطن ومن خلالها حلف الناتو استراتيجية ما بعد انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي وتفككه، على معادلة يكاد يكون لها ركيزة واحدة، هي منع قيام علاقة تعاون بين روسيا وأوكرانيا، عملاً بالنظرية التي صاغها مبكراً في أيام الاتحاد السوفياتي، المفكر الأميركي الاستراتيجي زبيغنيو بريجنسكي، تحت عنوان روسيا دولة كبيرة وكبرى لكنها مع أوكرانيا إمبراطورية، واذا كانت كل وثائق حلف الناتو قد قامت على تصنيف روسيا طوال مرحلة ما بعد نهاية الحرب البادرة كعدو محتمل، ثم عدو وشيك، ثم عدو أكيد، ثم عدو خطر وأول، كما قالت آخر هذه الوثائق، فإن كلام الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن ومستشار أمنه القومي ووزير خارجيته ووزير دفاعه، ترجم هذه التوصيفات بتعابير أشد عدائية تجاه روسيا، لكن ترجمة هذا التشخيص بقيت تجد نفسها بالاستثمار على جعل أوكرانيا ساحة تصعيد بوجه روسيا.

جاء انقلاب 2014 الذي أطاح بحكم صديق لروسيا في أوكرانيا، من بوابة ثورة ملوّنة تشبه ما جرى خلال الربيع العربي باستثمار مليارات الدولارات، في جمعيات مجتمع مدني وحركات فاشية قومية، والتركيز على الفساد الذي طبع النظام الأوكراني، لكن عائد هذا التغيير لم يتحول الى مدخل لإقامة نظام المصلحة الوطنية في اوكرانيا، بل كان مجرد واسطة ومدخل لبدء تطبيق خطة أكمل لمحاصرة روسيا، بعدما كان الناتو قد نجح تباعا بضم دول البلطيق وأغلب دول أوروبا الشرقية التي كانت ضمن الاتحاد السوفياتي قبل تفككه أو عضواً في حلف وارسو قبل حله. وجاءت الخطوة المفاجئة للرئيس الروسي فلاديمير بوتين بإعلان ضم شبه جزيرة القرم، رسالة ردع فاجأت واشنطن والناتو، وخلطت الأوراق. وقد كشف بوتين أمس انه اتخذ خطواته تجاه القرم وفقاً لمعلومات مؤكدة بنية الغرب ومن خلفه واشنطن، بجعل القرم قاعدة لحلف الأطلسي على البحر الأسود تحكم محاصرة روسيا بعيداً عن المياه الدافئة، وهو بذلك أكمل خطوة رادعة سابقة قام بها بوجه محاولة تحويل جورجيا إلى قاعدة للناتو، عندما استعاد عسكرياً أوسيتيا الجنوبية وأبخازيا من أيدي القوات الجورجية.

خلال اتفاقيات مينسك حرصت روسيا على تأكيد عدم اعترافها بجمهوريتي دونباس، مقابل حل سلمي لأزمة علاقتهما بكييف، وخلال ثماني سنوات بقيت كييف تراوغ، ومن ورائها واشنطن والناتو، بخلفية اقتناص الفرصة لحسم الموقف عسكرياً، وهو ما تعتبره واشنطن رداً للاعتبار بعد الانسحاب من أفغانستان، وإعادة إمساك بعنق أوروبا مجدداً، وتعويض للفشل في خطة الانقلاب في كازاخستان، ولذلك وجهت الاتهامات الى موسكو بنية غزو أوكرانيا، وتمّ دفع شحنات الأسلحة الى أوكرانيا، وفقاً لما كشفه بالتفاصيل كلام بوتين، فدون الاتهام كان كل ذلك سيبدو استفزازاً غير مبرر لروسيا، وكان الرئيس بوتين يضع الأمور على مفترق طرق بين الحل الدبلوماسي من بوابة اتفاقات مينسك، بحل سلمي للوضع في دونباس، او الرد على التمسّك بالحل العسكري عندما يبدأ بالاعتراف بجمهوريتي دونباس وتوقيع اتفاقيّة تعاون دفاعيّ معهما.

ما فعله بوتين أمس، أنه قلب الطاولة، وقال للأميركيين ومَن معهم، اركبوا أعلى خيلكم، فكل محاولة لحسم عسكري في دونباس صارت مشروع حرب مع روسيا، فمن يظن ذلك ممكناً فليفعل، ومن قال إن منع تمدد الناتو الى الجوار الروسي يشكل تصعيداً روسياً وتغييراً لخريطة اوروبا وقواعد النظام العالمي، عليه أن يتعامل مع هذا التغيير لخريطة اوروبا وقواعد النظام العالمي عملياً، وليس نظرياً، وقد بدأت موسكو بالأفعال تردّ على الأفعال، كما فعلت في سورية وكازاخستان، وفي القرم وأوسيتيا وأبخازيا سابقاً، وعلى ألمانيا خصوصاً أن تختار بين ان تدفع ثمن استقرارها الاقتصادي والسياسي بتحييد نفسها عن هذه الحرب، أو أن تترك الأميركيين يلعبون بمستقبلها، ويدمرون اقتصادها، فكل ما يحكيه الأميركيون عن العقوبات الاقتصادية تافه، من دون وقف تدفق الغاز الروسي إلى ألمانيا. واذا كانت روسيا ستخسر كما خسرت في حرب الأسعار التي شنتها عليها واشنطن بواسطة السعودية كرد على تموضع روسيا في سورية، لكن ألمانيا ستكون الخاسر الأكبر.

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سقوط معادلة كسينجر روسيا والصين

ناصر قنديل

لا ينكر المحللون الاستراتيجيون الأميركيون دور الانفتاح الأميركي على الصين قبل نصف قرن، وفقاً للصفقة التي أبرمها هنري كيسنجر كمستشار للأمن القومي الأميركي لحكم الرئيس ريتشارد نيكسون، مع رئيس وزراء الصين يومها شي أون لاي، في توفير البيئة اللازمة للتفرّغ لمواجهة الاتحاد السوفياتي، وصولاً للنجاح بتفكيكه عام 1990. وكانت المعادلة التي أقامها كيسنجر وشكلت أساس عقيدته للأمن القومي بعد حرب فييتنام، وتابعها من بعده زبيغنيو بريجنسكي مستشار الأمن القومي في حكم الرئيس رونالد ريغان بالتعاون مع رئيس المخابرات يومها جورج بوش الأب قبل أن يصبح نائباً للرئيس فرئيساً، يواصل السياسات ذاتها، هي معادلة قدمي النسر، وتقوم على إغراء الصين بفك الحصار المالي والغذائي عنها، لرد خطر المجاعة التي تهدد دائماً تكاثرها السكاني الضخم، وما يعنيه ذلك من غض نظر عما تصفه الوكالات الأميركية المعنية بانتهاكات صينية للمعايير الأميركية لحقوق الإنسان والتجارة العالمية وحقوق الملكية الفكرية، مقابل امتناع الصيني عن وضع سياسة خارجية نشطة تخرج عن مجرد تثبيت المواقف على طريقة رفع العتب، وخصوصا لما يتصل بملفات المواجهة بين واشنطن وموسكو، على قاعدة اعتبار الاتحاد السوفياتي عدواً أول لأميركا، ومنافساً ايديولوجياً للصين، وبالتوازي تقوم عقيدة كيسنجر على خوض مواجهة ضارية مع الاتحاد السوفياتي محورها سباق تسلّح يقود موسكو نحو الإفلاس، ويدفع بنظام أمانها الاجتماعي الى الانهيار.

بعد تحقيق ما رسمته عقيدة كيسنجر من أهداف قبل ثلاثة عقود، أدارت واشنطن ظهرها للصين وروسيا، متفرغة لملء الفراغ الجيواستراتيجي الناتج عن انهيار الاتحاد السوفياتي، ففي العقد الأول كان اهتمامها على حسم المساحة الأوروبية التي خرجت منها موسكو، وبعد العام 2000 توجّهت واشنطن نحو آسيا لملء الفراغات الناشئة في مناطق الصراع، وشكلت أفغانستان والعراق الوجهة الطبيعية، وفقاً لعقيدة أخرى وضعها بريجنسكي بعد انتصار الثورة الإسلامية في إيران، هي معادلة فتحات السدود، وعنوانها نصب الحواجز وإزالة الحواجز، ترتكز عملياً على ثنائية أوكرانيا وأفغانستان، حيث أمن روسيا يحسم في أوكرانيا، لدرجة التداخل الجغرافي والسكاني بينها وبين روسيا، وأمن آسيا يحسم في أفغانستان لموقعها الجغرافي كحاجز برّي يمنع التلاقي الجغرافي بين عمالقة آسيا، روسيا والصين وإيران، ومنذ ذلك التاريخ والتعثر يرافق السياسات الأميركية، وصولاً لضم روسيا لشبه جزيرة القرم، وانسحاب القوات الأميركية من أفغانستان.

خلال العقود الثلاثة الماضية كانت النهضة المتحررة من أعباء المنافسة الافتراضيّة بين موسكو وبكين، تسجل تقدماً حثيثاً، وتتحوّل معها كل منهما إلى دولة قوية ومقتدرة، وتشكل كل منهما مصدراً لتلبية حاجات الآخر، فروسيا البلد الأول في العالم في تصدير النفط والغاز معاً، والصين هي البلد الأول في العالم في الاستهلاك الصناعي للنفط والغاز، وبعد التكامل السياسي والعسكري تأتي الخطوة الأخيرة بإعلان التكامل الاقتصادي، لتشكل الضربة القاضية للأحلام الأميركية باستعادة فرص الحياة لمشروع الهيمنة والأحادية، وليس غريباً الآن أن تنتشر في واشنطن، نظريات الإدانة لمعادلات كيسنجر وبريجنسكي، على قاعدة الاعتراف بالفشل، لكن بما هو أخطر، وهو استحالة ترميم المشهد وتعديل الاتجاه، وفيما تبدو السياسات الأميركية انفعاليّة وأقرب للعشوائية، تبدو كل من روسيا والصين وهما تعملان وفقاً لخطة وروزنامة، لترتسم معامل العالم الجديد، تحت عنوان التعدديّة وسقوط الهيمنة، ونهوض الدولة الوطنيّة التي جعلتها منظومة العولمة الأميركية الفكرية والسياسية هدفاً يجب إسقاطه.

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A dark character in the Ukrainian crisis

2 Feb 2022

 For fanatics like Nuland, Kagan, and all the American neocons, war is the only way to regain the lost international hegemony

Source: Al Mayadeen

Atilio A. BoronAtilio A. Boron

Victoria Nuland, and with her the “hawks” in Washington, are the most radicalized and violent expression of imperialism in its turbulent phase of decline.

Ukraine seems doomed to infinite suffering. To its current domestic problems (economic crisis and corruption, according to the European Union) and in addition to those arising from the possible confrontation between NATO troops and Russia in its troubled territory, the dreadful presence of Victoria Nuland – Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs- has been added in recent days to the negotiations between Washington and Moscow.

Nuland’s murky background rarely comes to light in the hegemonic press, inside and outside the United States. She is depicted as a career diplomat but more than anything she is a lobbyist for the “military-industrial complex” in her country, including General Dynamics, Northrop Grumman and other corporations whose profits grow in proportion to the warmongering of the United States foreign policy; profits which in part they return to their supporters in the federal agencies of Washington, including Nuland and others of the sort.

It is not a minor fact that she is married to Robert Kagan, one of the harshest warmongering neoconservatives, and that together they participate in a series of organizations and think tanks dedicated to exalt the “indispensable” American supremacism in world affairs. Both have a significant share of responsibility because they count among those who designed the tremendous military failures in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, among other war adventures.

Between 2003 and 2005 Nuland was one of the main advisers to Vice President Dick Cheney and a fervent promoter of the invasion and occupation of Iraq, a policy that over the years produced a balance of half a million dead, although some estimates throw much higher figures. In his second term in office, President George W. Bush rewarded Nuland for her belligerence and appointed her ambassador to NATO between 2005 and 2008, during which time she devoted herself to organizing the international support for the US occupation in Afghanistan.

In 2013, Barack Obama appointed her Deputy Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, a position from which she actively promoted the protests of nationalist and neo-Nazi groups against the government of Viktor Yanukovych, then president of Ukraine and representative of the Party of Regions, opposed to the assimilation of Ukraine by the European Union and NATO. Nuland not only sponsored the “soft coup” (which culminated in numerous bloody episodes) but, exceeding his powers, personally participated in the demonstrations that the extreme right staged in Kyiv’s Maidan Square at the end of December 2013. 

  • Victoria Nuland and Geoffrey Pyatt together toured the opposition camp in Kyiv in December 2013

After the parliamentary removal of the Yanukovych government on February 22, 2014, the open US intervention in the internal affairs of Ukraine became even more visible. Despite the fact that Washington assured that the problems of Ukraine should be resolved by the Ukrainians, Nuland and Geoffrey Pyatt, the United States ambassador in Kyiv, were in charge of selecting who, among the opposition leaders, should take the reins of the new government.

The American option fell on Arseni Petrovich Yatseniuk, a lawyer and politician closely linked to the financial community who on February 27, 2014, was appointed as Prime Minister of Ukraine. In a leaked telephone conversation between Pyatt and Nuland, the ambassador suggested that before making the proposal in favor of Yatseniuk (who snubbed other opposition leaders) it would be advisable to check the opinion of the high-ranking members of the European Union. Nuland’s response was coarse and vicious, and thus it was recorded and spread throughout the world: “Fuck the European Union!” The subservient governments of the region, unworthy vassals of Washington according to Zbigniew Brzezinski, meekly accepted the offense. Angela Merkel and the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, limited themselves to saying that Nuland’s diplomatic blunder was “absolutely unacceptable” without demanding any disavowal from the White House. The incident proved the extent of the moral and political bankruptcy of the European governments!

Nuland, and with her the “hawks” in Washington, are the most radicalized and violent expression of imperialism in its turbulent phase of decline. 

A few days ago, and this is the reason why I am writing this note, Nuland declared that if the Russian invasion of Ukraine materializes, the “Nord-Stream 2” gas pipeline -designed to transport gas from Russia to Western Europe without passing through Ukrainian territory- will not be able to start working. If there is one thing we can be sure of, it is that the rising role of Nuland is bad news because it will reduce the chances of finding a diplomatic solution to the current Ukrainian crisis.

Nuland, and with her the “hawks” in Washington, are the most radicalized and violent expression of imperialism in its turbulent phase of decline. They believe in the “civilizing mission” of their country (hence the idea of ​​the United States as “the indispensable nation”) and consider Russia and China as barbaric nations that threaten the stability of the current world (dis)order and that the only language both understand is that of force.

That is why NATO has Russia encircled from the Baltic to the Black Sea and the US war fleet is approaching Taiwan. For fanatics like Nuland, Kagan, and all the American neocons, war is the only way to regain the lost international hegemony, even if they pay lip service to diplomacy.   

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Why Russia is Ready to Check-mate the U.S. and its Western Empire

January 11, 2022

By Finian Cunningham

Source

The Western empire-builders are weakened and exposed in the eyes of their own populations and thus are disarmed politically to pursue confrontation.

Author and commentator Alex Krainer explains in the following interview why Russia is now strong enough to take a definitive stand against the United States and its Western empire-builders. This is the wider historical context for high-level negotiations being conducted this week between Russia and the U.S. and NATO in which Moscow has asserted red lines for its national security.

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the U.S.-led Western powers became deluded with arrogant entitlement. As Krainer points out, the Western empire-builders presumed to have the right to wage wars and flout international law. For much of the past three-decade period, Russia was too weak economically and politically to challenge this reckless aggression. But now it has grown strong enough to “check-mate the empire’s global ambitions”. This is why war or regime change in Russia has become an obsessive goal for the U.S. and Western partners. It accounts for the relentless sanctions, Russophobia and surge in tensions over Ukraine and more recently Kazakhstan.

Russia is perceived as an obstacle to Western control over the strategically vital Eurasian continent. The prize of Eurasia has long been coveted by Western imperialists, from the British Empire’s Sir Halford Mackinder to the U.S. strategist Zbigniew Brzezinski. As Krainer notes, it was this imperial calculation by the Anglo-American capitalists that led to the building up of Nazi Germany as a bludgeon to destroy the Soviet Union and purportedly to give the empire-builders global hegemony. This imperial machination led to World War II and the greatest conflagration in human history with as many as 85 million dead. The Soviet Union and China accounted for more than half of the death toll.

Today, the Western imperialists are prepared to start another catastrophic war, even if it risks a nuclear Armageddon, contends Krainer. But he says that Russia is strong enough to now force the Western imperialists into political detente. He believes that the Russian leadership has calculated that the Western empire-builders are weakened and exposed in the eyes of their own populations and thus are disarmed politically to pursue confrontation.

Alex Krainer is a commodities trader and hedge fund manager whose market analysis can be found at I-System Trend Following. He is also a commentator on international politics at thenakedhedgie.com. A recent article reassesses the British “appeasement policy” towards Hitler in the 1930s arguing the real aim was to weaponize the Third Reich against the Soviet Union. He refers to this deeper historical account to demolish false analogies made today by Western politicians and pundits who absurdly compare Russia and Putin with Nazi Germany and Hitler. Krainer is the author of the ground-breaking book “Grand Deception: the Truth About Bill Browder, the Magnitsky Act and Anti-Russian Sanctions”.

Alex Krainer

Interview

Question: Some American and European politicians are demanding that there should be “no appeasement” towards Russia over the mounting tensions and security crisis regarding Ukraine and Europe generally. The insinuation is that Russia is comparable to Nazi Germany in the 1930s by allegedly posing an existential threat to Europe’s security. You point out that there is a grossly distorted analogy here with how Britain and France are accused of “appeasement” of Nazi Germany in the lead-up to the Second World War. Can you explain?

Alex Krainer: Western powers seem to have largely lost institutional brakes on waging war. Someone cries “human rights,” and we seem prepared to obliterate entire nations with hardly any debate, discussion, or any long-term plan. The consent for war, or “kinetic action”, is simply contrived by myriad think-tanks, often directly or indirectly funded by the military-industrial complex. With unhindered access to the media, these organizations produce rhetoric that rationalizes hostility, demonization of targeted adversaries and justifications for war. Today, as tensions with Russia have escalated to a boiling point, some of them draw historical parallels between today’s Russia and Nazi Germany. Among others, Victoria Nuland and Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger have recently invoked Britain’s 1938 policy of appeasement that caused the destruction of Czechoslovakia and empowered Hitler. The insinuation is that today, Ukraine is Czechoslovakia, Donbas is Sudetenland and that Vladimir Putin is Hitler. If the parallels were valid, they would imply that we should pay almost any price to avoid repeating Neville Chamberlain’s errors of judgment that plunged Europe into the tragedy of World War II. Of course, the parallels are entirely false, but unfortunately, this is not widely understood.

Question: Going deeper into the history of that fateful pre-WWII period, you contend that the British Conservative government of Neville Chamberlain was not so much “appeasing” Hitler’s Nazi Germany but rather London was covertly green lighting Berlin’s expansionism and the annexation of the Czech Sudetenland territory. Therefore, can British policy be blamed for starting the war in Europe and the subsequent criminal aggression of Nazi Germany?

Alex Krainer: London was definitely covertly green lighting Berlin’s expansionism. However, it’s quite possible that they did much more than that. Today we have compelling evidence that Hitler was actually recruited, cultivated and empowered to carry water for the globalist agenda of the empire builders based on Wall Street and the City of London. In fact, Western powers do this as a matter of course: they incubate nationalistic leaders they can plant in different nations but who would remain loyal to them. Examples include Russia’s Alexey Navalny and Venezuela’s Juan Guaido. The problem was that Adolf Hitler was massively empowered with capital and military technology and became something of a monster in the heart of Europe. He also had his own ideas about his historical mission and didn’t hesitate to bite the hands that had fed him. But some of these facts remain obscured to this day as the victors made sure to write a sanitized and airbrushed history of World War II. With regard to appeasement, the distortion was that the British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain only appeased Hitler and sacrificed Czechoslovakia in order to preserve peace in Europe. In other words, Chamberlain had good intentions but made a bad error of judgment. This is not what happened; Chamberlain and his foreign policy cabal which included Lord Halifax, Sir Horace Wilson, Sir John Simon, Lord Runciman, and Sir Samuel Hoare took a very active role in the negotiations between Hitler’s Germany and Czechoslovakia and the result – Germany’s taking over of Czechoslovakia’s most developed and most industrialized region of Sudetenland – was exactly what they had intended.

Question: It is not widely known, as you point out, that British and American finance capital was heavily supporting the Third Reich in the run-up to WWII. What were the geopolitical objectives behind this support from Britain and the United States for Nazi Germany?

Alex Krainer: As with every empire, the British Empire’s objective was world domination, and the arrangement they had envisioned and planned was a “three-block” system. As Lord Halifax articulated it after the Munich conference in September 1938, the three blocks included control of the far-Eastern dominions in alliance with Japan, control of the Euro-Atlantic block in alliance with the United States and the control of central and eastern European continent through Germany as the hegemon in that region. Germany was also intended as the bludgeon to wield against and destroy Russia and thus eliminate the British Empire’s perennial rival in controlling the Eurasian landmass. The empire builders have not given up on this three-block vision of the new global order, which is perhaps most visibly exemplified by the Trilateral Commission, co-founded in 1973 by Zbigniew Brzezinski. The difference is that today the agenda is being pursued through ostensibly democratic institutions of the European Union while still consistently empowering Germany as the dominant power among the supposed equals. And Russia remains the rival to destroy either through war or regime change. However, it seems to me that their game is up and the fantasy of dominating the world has receded beyond reach today.

Question: If we apply that kind of understanding of history to today, are you contending that the United States, Britain and other NATO powers are trying to similarly contain Russia through fomenting tensions and aggression in Europe, albeit in the language of “defending Ukraine”?

Alex Krainer: There’s no doubt about that – the more you pay attention, the more obvious it is. The foundational principle of the conflict between Russia and the U.S. and Britain is the struggle for control of the Eurasian landmass which has been the empire builders’ overarching imperative ever since Sir Halford Mackinder explicitly formulated it in 1904 in his Heartland Theory. In “Democratic Ideals and Reality,” he wrote that, “Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland; who rules the Heartland commands the World-island; who rules the World-island controls the world.” Since then, the empire changed headquarters from London to Washington DC, but this imperative has not changed. Zbigniew Brzezinski reaffirmed it again in his 1997 book, “The Grand Chessboard,” explaining also the empire builders’ rationale for this ambition: “For America, the chief geopolitical prize is Eurasia… Eurasia is the globe’s largest continent and is geopolitically axial. A power that dominates Eurasia would control two of the world’s three most advanced and economically productive regions. … About 75% of the world’s people live in Eurasia and most of the world’s physical wealth is there as well, both in its enterprises and underneath its soil. Eurasia accounts for 60% of the world’s GDP and about 3/4ths of the world’s known energy resources.”

This obsession is part and parcel of Western policy toward Russia continuously to this day. In August 2018 in a briefing to the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee by the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, Wess Mitchell stated that the “central aim of the [Trump] administration’s foreign policy is to defend U.S. domination of Eurasian landmass as the foremost U.S. national security interest and to prepare the nation for this challenge.” Mitchell also said that the administration was “working with our close ally the UK to form an international coalition for coordinating efforts in this field.” Now, if Russia reasserts itself as the dominant power in Eastern Europe, this pretty much check-mates the empire’s global ambitions, so containing Russia and limiting its influence in Europe is absolutely critical and I think they will not give up on this even at the price of a nuclear war.

Question: Russia has put forward security proposals to the U.S. and NATO calling for a written guarantee of no further eastward expansion of the bloc to include membership of Ukraine and other neighboring countries. Moscow also wants guarantees of no American strike weapons to be installed in neighboring territories. Critics of Russia say these demands are an unreasonable ultimatum from Moscow that impinges on nations’ freedom of choice to determine their security options. How do you see it?

Alex Krainer: I think that much of the West is torn between cooperation and trade with Russia and the policy of Cold War and confrontation. As British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has recently put it addressing “our friends” in Europe, “a choice is shortly coming between mainlining ever more Russian hydrocarbons in giant new pipelines and sticking up for Ukraine” and championing the cause of peace and stability. He literally put it in those terms and I think his words do reflect the continent’s dilemma. For the ordinary people and most businesses, the choice is between having a strong export market for their products and abundant energy keeping their homes warm and their societies running and an acute energy crisis and the risk of a hot war with a nuclear power. For the empire builders it is equally clear: no matter how delusional, they will never give up on their ambition to rule the world. As late John Kenneth Galbraith noted, “People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage”.

I think that the Russian leadership has no illusions about the nature of their conflict with the West, but in putting forward their tough security proposals they have chosen the moment of fractious politics across much of the West to force a showdown between the forces representing legitimate democratic concerns in the Western societies and those representing the interest of the empire builders. Today those proposals may seem unreasonable to some, but this is only because we all got accustomed to the idea that Western powers somehow have the right to do as they well please while other powers have no right to object or assert their own security concerns.

Question: Do you think Russia can be faulted for not being more proactive in past years on objecting to NATO expansion? Moscow maintains it was given verbal guarantees in the late 1990s by U.S. leaders that there would be no eastward expansion of the military bloc. Yet as we know, NATO membership was given to former Warsaw Pact nations Poland and Hungary in 1999, then to the Baltic states in 2004, and in 2008 an offer made to the former Soviet Republics of Ukraine and Georgia. Therefore, has Russia been complacent in passively allowing the present security crisis to evolve in Europe? In other words, does the appeasement argument actually run in reverse, namely that Russia has been at fault for appeasing the United States and NATO?

Alex Krainer: After the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Russia very nearly disintegrated. Its economy collapsed and experienced the longest depression recorded anywhere during the 20th century. It was in a very weak position and Western powers took advantage of that weakness to expand NATO eastward to secure that imperative of dominating Eastern Europe and through it the Eurasian landmass. It is true that Russia suffered this breach of faith rather passively, but Russian leadership probably judged that they were not in the position to credibly counter the West, that they were too vulnerable to Western sanctions and that they needed to rebuild their economic, political, diplomatic and military muscle. I think you have a point in saying that the appeasement argument might run in reverse, but in this case, I believe Russia’s strategy has been to play a long game and wait to confront the West from a position of strength. Twenty years ago, Russia was broken while today it is a force to reckon with. We’ll see how things play out, but one thing is certain – the empire builders now have a worthy adversary.

Question: Do you see a diplomatic solution to the crisis?

Alex Krainer: A diplomatic solution will have to be found – this is inevitable. Even if we see a hot war break out between Russia and the U.S. and NATO, such a conflict would not last forever and in the end the adversaries would still have to sit at a table and sign some sort of a treaty. Of course, for 99.99% of all involved, a diplomatic solution now would be preferable to one following a nuclear Armageddon. I tend to be more optimistic and hope that we won’t see a war break out, but I’ve already lived through the breakout of war and I know firsthand that the unthinkable can actually happen so we shouldn’t be complacent either. To the extent that the legitimate institutions and mechanisms of democracy still function in the West, we ought to use them to put pressure on our policymakers to defend peace. I would certainly prefer to see Russian hydrocarbons in giant new pipelines rather than another tragic European war fought ultimately for someone’s delusional agenda of world domination.

Endnote: By way of demonstrating the reality of which nation is most responsible for war and destruction since the end of World War II, Alex Krainer cited the following study and comment. The astounding disconnect with public perception says a lot about the propaganda function of Western media:

He writes: In June of 2014, a group of American researchers published an article in the American Journal of Public Health, pointing out that, “Since the end of World War II, there have been 248 armed conflicts in 153 locations around the world. The United States launched 201 overseas military operations between the end of World War II and 2001, and since then, others, including Afghanistan and Iraq.” To be sure, each of these wars was duly explained and justified to the American public and for all those Americans who believe that their government would never deceive them, each war was defensible and fought for a good reason. Nonetheless, the fact that one nation initiated more than 80% of all wars in the last seventy years does require an explanation.”

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