Norman Finkelstein : Russia has the historical right to invade Ukraine (updated with transcript)

May 15, 2022

The Debrief with Briahna Joy Gray, April 8, 2022.

Source: http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/norman-finkelstein-on-ideology-in-the-classroom-and-ukraine-the-debrief-with-briahna-joy-gray/

Transcript:

Question: How much of a similarity maybe do you see between the kind of… the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the way some people handle some of the reactionary and right-wing elements in the Palestinian defense and opposition, versus how some of the left is talking about the Ukraine defense and the Azov battalions… Do you think there’s a comparison? And I’ll just leave the question at that. Thanks.

Norman Finkelstein: Well I have to ask Briahna’s permission to go in a digression…

Briahna: Absolutely.

Norman Finkelstein : Okay. On the question of the Ukraine, the thing that’s troubled me about the public conversation of the Ukraine or hysteria —it’s not even a conversation, it’s hysteria about the Ukraine— is the following: those who are not totally immersed in the mainstream propaganda, some of the people you’ve had on your program and people who are not especially of the left, they have no particular left-wing allegiance, like John Mearsheimer at University of Chicago, or before he passed away Stephen F. Cohen who predicted that if you keep up with this NATO expansion in the Ukraine, there’s going to be a war. He said that in Democracy Now in 2014, and he was right. And other people, Professor Chomsky. I would include in that group several others, and they’ll all say the following thing:

Number one, the Russians were promised that there would be no NATO expansion to the East, that was the quid pro quo for the reunification of Germany after the decomposition of the Soviet Union. The Russians were promised that but the West went ahead. We’re talking about the 1990s: the promises were given, but the West then went ahead and started to expand NATO once, as John Mearsheimer likes to put it there was the first tranche, then the second tranche of expansion… Then NATO starts expanding in Georgia and in the Ukraine. The Soviet Union says it’s a red line.

To stop this, the Soviet Union offers a perfectly reasonable resolution: just neutralize Ukraine like we neutralized Austria after World War II, neither aligned with an Eastern bloc nor aligned with a Western bloc. That seemed to me perfectly reasonable. And the people I mentioned, Mearsheimer, Cohen passed away since but Professor Chomsky and a number of others, they’ll all agree on the reasonableness of Putin’s demands.

And then the reasonableness of those demands, those demands have to, as Briahna says in her paper and as she said this evening, they have to always be seen in context. So what’s the context? The context is the Soviet Union, the former Russia, it lost… the estimates are about 30 million people during World War II. The United States which, if you watch American movies, you would think the US won World War II, it lost about two hundred thousand people. The UK was the second candidate for winning World War II, they lost about four hundred thousand people. The Soviet Union lost 30 million people. Even those who didn’t take courses in the hard sciences can reckon the difference between several hundred thousand and thirty million. Now that’s not an ancient memory for the Russians. If you… I remember Stephen F. Cohen saying “when I grew up in little America —he was from Kentucky— we used to celebrate…” I forgot what was called here Victory Day, V-something, he said “but you know now as adults we don’t celebrate that anymore in the United States, Victory in World War II”, he said, but Russia, he said, they still celebrate V-Day, they still celebrate it. I live in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn. A large part is Russian Jews, a large part is Russian Jews. You go out in May, you go out on the V-Day, and you can see that Russians up to 80 and 90 year olds, they’re wearing medals, they’re medals from World War II. That memory is alive.

And now there’s this Ukraine, where Nazis are playing an outsized role. I’m not saying they’re a majority, but in the political and military life, they play an outsized —disproportionate let’s call it— role. This Ukraine where Nazis are playing an outsized role, are aligned with a formidable military bloc called NATO, NATO keeps advancing and advancing and advancing, closing on Russia, trying to suffocate it… And beginning around 2016, under Trump, begins to arm the Ukraine, pouring in weapons, engaging in military exercises with NATO, behaving very provocatively. And then the Foreign Minister Lavrov finally says we’ve reached the boiling point.

Now everything I just told you, Professor Chomsky, John Mearsheimer and others will acknowledge it. The mainstream press won’t even acknowledge that but people who call themselves just, legitimately call themselves dissidents, although Mearsheimer wouldn’t call himself a dissident, he just calls himself a realist. Nice guy, I consider him a friend, I like him. They’ll acknowledge all that. But then they say the invasion was criminal. Criminal invasion, criminal, criminal, criminal. And my question which I’ve constantly been putting in correspondence is a very simple one: if you agree that for 20 years—more than 20 years, more than two decades—, Russia has tried to engage in diplomacy; if you agree that the Russian demand to neutralize Ukraine —not occupy it, not determine its government, its form of economy, just neutralize it like Austria after World War II—, if you agree that was a legitimate demand; if you agree that the West was expanding and expanding NATO; if you agree that Ukraine de facto had become a member of NATO, weapons pouring in, engaging in military exercises in NATO; and if you agree… You know, Russia lost 30 million people during World War II because of the Nazi invasion, so there’s a legitimate concern by Russia with all of these —if you excuse my language— Nazis floating around in the Ukraine, then the simple question is: What was Russia to do?

I’m not saying I agree with the invasion, I’m not saying it went right, but I think one thing: the invasion showed… you know what the one thing the invasion showed, Briahna, was that Russia is kind of weak militarily, which is why all the more they may have been fearful of a NATO-backed Ukraine filled with Nazis, and probably at some point positioning nuclear missiles on its border. And I think 30 million, 30 million people… Listen to this: I think 30 million people is 30 million arguments in favor of Russia. Now I’m not going to say, because I’m not a general and I’m not a diplomat, so I’m not going… I’m not a military strategist so I’m not going to say it was the wisest thing to do. I’m not going to say it was the most prudent thing to do. But I will say —and I’m not afraid to say it because it would dishonor the memory of my parents if i didn’t say it—, I will say that they had the right to do it. And I’m not taking that back. They had the right to do it. They had if I can call it the historic right to do it. 30 million people (killed during WW2), and now you’re starting again, you’re starting again. No, no, you know I can’t go for it, I can’t go for those who acknowledge the legitimacy of the arguments made by Putin but then call the invasion criminal. I don’t see that.

Now you could say the way they executed it may have had criminal elements. However I don’t know… Well, you went to Harvard Law School, I don’t know if you studied the laws of war, but the laws of war make a very big distinction between ‘jus ad bellum’ and ‘jus in bello’, namely whether the launching of the war was legitimate or whether it was an act of aggression versus the way you conduct the war, ‘jus in bello’. Maybe the conduct, targeting of civilians and so forth, that probably violates the laws of war, but that’s a separate issue under law from “did they have the right to attack”. I think they did. I’m not going to back off from that.

You know, these are for me… even at my age, these are acts of deference to the suffering of my parents. My parents felt a very deep love for the Russian people, because they felt the Russian people understood war. They understood what my parents went through [in the Warsaw Ghetto & Auschwitz] during World War II, so there was a very deep affection… My father even, at the end of his life, he learned fluent Russian because neighborhood is all Russian. And you know, Polish to Russian is not a huge leap but also he liked the Russian people. So in my family growing up, the worst curse (insult)… there were two curses, two curses: curse number one was “parasite”. You have to work. My parents had a very… they had a work ethic. Believe me, I could have lived without the idea of pleasure, it didn’t exist in my house: you had to work. And the second word, the second curse, the second epithet was “traitor”. A traitor. And I know my parents would regard me as a traitor if I denounced what the Russians were doing now. How they’re doing it, as they say, probably there are violations and maybe egregious violations of the laws of war, we’ll have to wait to see the evidence, but their right to protect their homeland from this relentless juggernaut, this relentless pressing on their throats, when there was such an easy way to resolve it…

You know, if you read War and peace, and I suspect you did because you’re quite a gifted writer, obviously you were a reader…

Briahna: I confess, there was a copy on my shelf that I have started many times, but I haven’t… I’ve never finished it.

Norman Finkelstein: I’m surprised… In any case, War and peace is about the invasion of Russia, the war of 1812, and Tolstoy, the centerpiece of War and peace is the great battle of Borodino, and he describes it in this kind of terrifying detail. In the battle of Borodino, 25 000 Russians were killed, or maybe it was all together 25 000, I can’t remember, I think was 25 000 Russians were killed. Why do I mention it? So for Russians the seminal event of the 19th century was the war of 1812 and the invasion of Russia. For the 20th century, it’s World War II, and just in the battle of Leningrad, just Leningrad, not Saint-Petersburg, just Leningrad, a million Russians were killed. There was cannibalism! This is serious, World War II for the Russians. And you want me to just forget about that? That’s just a trivial fact? A trivial fact? No! Now you’ll ask yourself: in all the coverage that you’ve heard about your Russian attack on Ukraine, all the coverage you’ve read and listened to, how many times have you heard that 30 million Russians were killed during World War II? How many times?

Briahna Very infrequently. It’s never stated in this context.

Norman Finkelstein: Absolutely. And Stephen F. Cohen… You know, he was my Professor at Princeton and for a while he was my advisor. He… I didn’t know him well and at the end we had a falling down over my whole dissertation catastrophe, debacle, but Cohen had a genuine affection for the Russian people. He did. He loved the Russians. He loved the Russian people. And so when he begins his presentation… There is a Youtube of him debating the former US Ambassador, Mc Faul I think, Michael Mc Faul. How does he begin? He begins with how Russians remember the V-day. You know, that’s the starting point for me, it’s a starting point.

http://www.twitter.com/caitoz/status/1525620613980643328

Now you might say well, doesn’t your whole argument then justify what Israel does because of what happened to Jews during World War II? It’s an interesting question because the most moving, the most moving speech in support of the founding of the State of Israel, by far the most moving speech, you know who it was given by at the UN? It was given by the Soviet foreign minister Gromyko. And he said it was another act of generosity. Remember I mentioned to you earlier the boy’s act of generosity where he looks past what Trichka says about Black people, and as a student I thought it was a very generous act. So now the Russians lost 30 million people in World War II, but Gromyko says the suffering of the Jews, it was different, it was horrible. Here is a Russian saying that. And he said if a binational State is not possible, they earned their right to a State. So I say I applied the same standard. Now the way Israel carried out its right to establish a State by expelling the indigenous population, appropriating their land and creating havoc and misery for generation after generation, decade after decade, no I’m not going there. But yes I do believe… in recent correspondence with some friends I use the expression “I think Russia has the historic right to protect itself”, not by violating somebody else’s right to self-determination but neutralization, I think that’s legitimate.

Briahna: So I want to ask you this because you know it wouldn’t be right for me to put this question to Ro Khanna and not put this question to you. You are speaking so compellingly about the kind of moral valences of who’s entitled to feeling insecure as a nation, who’s entitled because of the historical cost it has paid to defend itself and to defend whatever you want to call it, you know, democracy in fascism, all of these kinds of words, has paid in terms of the number of human lives and kind of an unmatched price, and I think that’s…

Norman Finkelstein: The Chinese lost about 26 million to the Japanese, so it was close.

Briahna: It’s close but still… And yet when I was talking to Ro Khanna and he was saying well, ultimately he’s arguing on the other side that America is 100% right, Russia’s 100% wrong and this is a just war regardless of the substance. I would push him on this idea, of even if you believe it to be just kind of morally, the act I’m going to have to as a leftist is pushback against the idea that the preemptiveness of the war is okay, and that war is a solution. It is something that we should be tacitly or implicitly condoning. And I wonder what you make of that question.

Norman Finkelstein: Look, Briahna, not to flatter you but you always ask the right questions, and that’s why I was careful in what I said. You referred to the pre-emptiveness. Russia tried for 22 years. That’s giving a lot of time to diplomacy! 22 years is a lot of time!

And the question is: at what point, at what point does Russia get to act? When there are nuclear-tipped missiles on its border? Is that when it gets to act? I don’t agree with that. I think of course you have to give maximum time to see if diplomacy is going to work, absolutely…

Briahna: And then you start fighting? And then you send in troops? Because Norm, this is the… whether or not you believe…

Norman Finkelstein: I’m very happy, I’m very happy to take to heart your question. And that leads me again with the same question that I returned to you and I’ve returned to all of my correspondents over the past six weeks. If it’s clear that all the negotiations are in bad faith, if it’s clear that Ukraine had become de facto a member of NATO, what was Russia supposed to do? You say “don’t send in troops”. Fine. I come from a family that was completely anti-war. My mother used to say “better a hundred years of evolution than one year of revolution”. She had enough of war. I have no problem with your recoiling at the process. But what I’m saying is what was Russia supposed to do?

Briahna: What I’m asking is how you distinguish between your feelings that this is a moral war, this is a justified act, fine, and someone like Ro Khanna’s belief that US intervention, continued support of NATO, Western powers, sending weapons into Ukraine, arming the Azov battalion, is as he puts it a just war. The fact that you are both making these arguments, regardless… I’m not making an equivalent between the value of your arguments but obviously Ro Khanna thinks what he thinks and my point to him was you using vague terms like “just war” is exactly what’s allowed the kind of jingoistic parade to lead us into so many other incursions. So how principally do you distinguish? I understand your feeling and I understand the historical citations and the loss of life that leads you to the conclusions that you’ve been led to, but someone on the other side will say the same thing, someone else said “Well Marshall well this is how many Ukrainians have suffered and this is…”

Norman Finkelstein: But you’re canceling, if I may use that word, you’re canceling the context. You see I began my whole discussion with you, not with the position of Biden or the position of lunatics like Judy Woodruff, you know, and PBS. I said my quarrel is with people on the left who agree with all of my context but then make the leap and say it’s a criminal invasion. And I say to Professor Meirsheimer, Professor Chomsky and many others who acknowledge everything I just said, I say then what was… if you agree with everything I said, what was Putin supposed to do? I don’t see what he was supposed to do. I’m lost. It’s an impasse. I don’t see what…

Briahna: You were making a reference earlier to laws of war and rules before, i don’t know about it, I’ve never studied the laws of war, but it does seem to me that a line is drawn between… and I know that people are going to say something can be constructively war and you know. But in terms of an actual invasion and boots on the ground or missile strikes or things like that, the thing that Russia has to do even if it disadvantages them strategically in some ways is to wait until the other person hits first.

Norman Finkelstein: I don’t agree with that. I would say, as in any case, you have to demonstrate its last resort, and therefore you do have to demonstrate…

Briahna: How do you do that? Because that’s the question, how do you make sure that this is not just the same kind of…

Norman Finkelstein: I’m going to give you a historical analogy, probably the details which you’re unfamiliar with, but just allow me to just sketch it out. So in 1967, Israel launches a war, it occupies the West Bank, Gaza, Syrian Golan heights, and then it occupies this huge area, the Egyptian Sinai. And after the 67 war, about three years later, when Anwar Sadat comes into power, he says “I’m willing to sign a peace treaty with Israel but they have to return the territory they acquired during the 67 war”, because that’s the law : under international law, it’s inadmissible to acquire territory by war. Israel acquired the territory during the june 67 war, so these territories belong to Egypt. Israel says no, we’re not leaving the Sinai. Sadat says “Look, I’m offering you a peace treaty, I’m offering you peace, just return what’s not yours, the Egyptian Sinai”. Israel says no. Then Israel starts creating facts in the ground in the Sinai, it starts building settlements, those same settlements you’re familiar with in the West Bank. And then it announces in 1972 it’s going to rebuild what’s called the old jewish city of Carmel. Egypt says you’re not going to do that. You’re crossing a red line. Egypt says if you don’t stop this we’re going to attack, we’re going to attack. Everybody ignores Egypt because Arabs don’t know how to fight wars. The Arabs were nicknamed after 67, the term of abuse for an Arab was they were “monkeys”, they called them monkeys. They don’t know how to fight wars. Okay? And then come october 1973. Guess what: Sadat attacks. And the Israelis were so shocked they thought the whole thing was over, they called it… Moshe Dayan who was the Defense minister at the time, or the Foreign minister I can’t remember which, I think Defense minister at the time, he says… he made this panicky phone call, he said it’s the end of the third temple. This is it, we’re finished. Well it wasn’t the end of the third temple but it was a significant, heavy loss to Israel, they lost between two and three thousand soldiers, which is the largest number except for the war in 1948.

Now here’s the point: the point is no country in the world, none, including the United States, no country in the world condemned Sadat for aggression, none. And you know, for Israel it was a close call, or it seemed to be. In retrospect it turned out not to me, but it seemed to be a close call. Nobody condemned Egypt. Why? One, its demand was legitimate. Return the Sinai, it’s not yours, it’s our territory. Number two: Sadat tried negotiations for six years. And number three, as hard as he tried to negotiate, Israelis kept provoking and provoking and provoking until they announced rebuilding the old jewish city of Carmel. And Sadat says it’s over and then plans with Syria the attack which happens, what’s called the Yom Kippur war, the october war in 1973.

So now fast forward to Putin: the man was reasonable (neutralize Ukraine), negotiates over 20 years to fighting over this NATO expansion in the East, and then they start provoking them even more, they start pouring weapons into the Ukraine, they start carrying on joint military exercises between Ukraine and NATO. And then all of these swarmy Nazis start to surface. No I’m not saying Nazis control the government but they play an outsized role in the government, in the military. And I don’t see what’s the difference between what Putin did and what Sadat did. I don’t see the difference. I think it was the same thing, and nobody condemns Sadat for aggression. No one.

Briahna: But I’m asking I think a different question. I’m really not interested in litigating any given case mostly because I don’t know what the hell any of these things are about, so like I don’t really… I’m not going to say whether this war is just, that’s for other people to determine. What I do know is that everyone is making that argument on all kinds of sides, including people I know I don’t disagree with. And so many wars have been started with the argument that it is a just war for x, y and z reasons, and it’s okay to act despite there not having been a direct act of aggression against the allegedly aggrieved party. And so all I’m asking is to give some thought to how one would articulate a standard that can’t be so easily abused.

Norman Finkelstein: You know, Rihanna, I agree, it’s like once you grow up in life, you discover that life is very little about principles: it’s mostly about judgment. Principles get you not very far. I remember I got this lesson from Professor Chomsky, as he always puts it in his very lucid, simple terms. He said to me once: “Norman, we all know it’s wrong to lie, but if a rapist knocks in your door and asks “Is your daughter in the bedroom”, there’s a clash of principles there obviously. And so at the end of the day, what is required is not the application of an abstract principle but the faculty of judgment. When principles clash, you have to exercise judgment. You then have to look at particulars, the specifics.

Briahna: Excuse me, I appreciate that, which is probably why, you know, this is the limit, this is the limit of it for me and I’ll… I’m happy to take more questions from people who I’m sure know much more about the particulars. Although your last statement about, you know, principles versus judgment, and you know, the rapist at your door, does make me, it does make me tempted to ask you about what you think about the slap. […]

[If you want to know what Norman Finkelstein thinks about Will Smith’s slap at the Oscars, and other more serious issues, check the full podcast].

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Nothing to Celebrate?

May 11, 2022

Source

by James Tweedie

On May 8, when Victory in Europe (VE) Day is celebrated in the West, US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield told CNN that Russia had “nothing to celebrate” on its own Victory Day on May 9.

Her reasoning, faithfully transcribed on the US mission’s website, was that “They have not succeeded in defeating the Ukrainians.”

Given that Victory Day and VE Day both specifically commemorate the allied defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, Thomas-Greenfield’s comments were like saying the US, Britain and France had nothing to celebrate this year because they got chased out of Afghanistan by the Taliban last August.

The ambassador is either an apologist for Nazism or merely too ignorant to do her job. She should at least read some objective reports about the conflict in the Ukraine.

In fact Russians had two immediate military victories to celebrate that Monday. Russian and Lugansk People’s Republic troops captured the town of Popasna, a lynchpin in the Ukrainian army’s defensive line that it had held for eight years.

Meanwhile Kiev, apparently desperate for a victory of its own to rain on the parade through Moscow’s Red Square, launched an airborne and marine assault on the now-famous Zmeinyy (Snake) Island off the coast of Odessa oblast.

Some sources say the Russians withdrew their small force holding the island as bait for a trap, but either way it went horribly wrong for the Ukrainians. They lost four jet fighters and strike aircraft, up to 10 helicopters, a corvette and three infantry landing craft. More than 60 of their personnel were killed, of which 27 were abandoned on the island.

The Ukraine is like a bull elephant that has been shot right in the heart in mid-charge. The beast keeps on bellowing and rampaging around, not yet realising that it’s already dead.

It becomes clearer by the day that the Ukrainian army attempting to occupy the remains of the Donbass republics, newly recognised by Russia just as the West ‘recognised’ its creations of Kosovo and South Sudan, is dead on its feet.

Its navy, air force, artillery, tanks and transportation are almost destroyed. Its casualties are replaced with boys and old men press-ganged off the streets of Kiev and Lvov, some without proper boots. Its senior officers are fled or dead.

Meanwhile the collective West, dominated as always by the Washington, pours in its hodgepodge of arms that belong in a museum, not on the battlefield. The latest arrivals are the 90 much-vaunted 155mm howitzers donated by the Pentagon — and made in UK, because the US military-industrial complex seemingly can’t produce a simple towed cannon any more.

US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin insisted on April 28 that the artillery pieces would prove “decisive” in the war with Russia. The former Raytheon executive can’t stop speaking in his arms industry sales patter. 90 guns is about what the Ukrainian army is losing every week. What use are they anyway against Russia’s hypersonic missiles, with a range of hundreds of miles and an accuracy radius of seven metres?

Pouring random assortments of arms into a country and expecting it to win against a well-organised and equipped opponent is just as incoherent a strategy as the war of attrition the US waged in Vietnam, or sending a whole army into a frontal assault on a mountain pass defended by a thousand.

Who is going to operate all this stuff if most of the experienced weapon and vehicle crews have become casualties or prisoners? How is it even supposed to get to the front when Russia has air superiority over the country and stand-off weapons that can reach right out to the border with Poland and kill hundreds of foreign mercenaries?

“Ukraine clearly believes it can win and so does everyone here,” Austin told his NATO counterparts at the Rammstein airbase a few days earlier, in a touching display of mass delusion on a US-occupied piece of Germany. “Ukraine needs our help to win today and they will still need our help when the war is over.”

In a pre-recorded virtual address to the Ukrainian parliament on May 3, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson made similar exhortations. “The so-called irresistible force of Putin’s war machine has broken on the immoveable object of Ukrainian patriotism,” Johnson declared triumphantly. “Ukraine will win, Ukraine will be free.”

Kiev is claiming it can rebuild its exhausted, demoralised, bled-white army in the west of the country — or better yet, in NATO-member Poland — and march east in a great wave of self-righteous retribution to reclaim the Donbass and Crimea.

This is accompanied by bizarre fascistic artwork of crusader knights, flying the 30-year-old Ukrainian flag, slaughtering Russian army orcs — literal fantasy role-playing game orcs with the letter ‘Z’ marked on their foreheads. And Western leaders are actually taking this stuff seriously.

Austin believes that fighting this war the last drop of Ukrainian blood will weaken the Russian military enough that it won’t be able to fight another war for years to come. Not so long ago this retired four-star general publicly referred to present-day Russia as the Soviet Union, whether by accident or on purpose we do not now.

Perhaps Austin should read a little history and discover that the USSR lost 27 million human lives in the war against Nazi Germany and its many European fascist allies, all now current or prospective NATO members.

Six million Soviets soldiers and partisans fell on the battlefield. Three million more were murdered by the Nazis as as prisoners of war, along with 18 million civilians.

Yet the Soviet Union emerged from that cataclysmic war stronger than ever, as the superpower that counter-balanced the US in the post-war order.

Like Germany in 1945, the Ukraine is marching fanatically towards its terrible Götterdämmerung, leaving a trail of footprints in its own blood. And NATO is standing behind, cheering it on and prolonging the death-agony.

‘Victory over death itself’: Why the 9th of May is so important for Russians

9 May, 2022

People holding photographs of their relatives who fought against Nazi Germany in WWII attend the Immortal Regiment march marking the 77th anniversary of the victory in World War II, in Moscow, Russia. © Sputnik / Grigory Sysoev

77 years after World War Two, Victory Day is regarded as the country’s most important holiday

By Evgeny Norin, a Russian historian focused on Russia’s wars and international politics

People holding photographs of their relatives who fought against Nazi Germany in WWII attend the Immortal Regiment march marking the 77th anniversary of the victory in World War II, in Moscow, Russia. © Sputnik / Grigory Sysoev

May 9 is a special holiday for Russians, and the great attention we pay to this date often seems unusual to people from other countries and cultures. Indeed, to say that “for Russians, the Second World War ended yesterday,” it is not far from the truth. 

Evgeny Dering was a veterinarian who treated horses. He lived in St. Petersburg, which was then called Leningrad. On June 22, 1941, he went off to war. Before he left, he asked his wife Regina to take their children – two daughters and a son just born in April – and leave for the depths of Russia. As it turned out, this request saved their lives. A few days later, Regina took her children to the village of Makarevo, in the Nizhny Novgorod oblast (then Gorky), and settled in a 15th century convent that had been set up as a shelter for refugees like her. More than 600,000 Leningrad residents died of hunger during the great siege of the city. Regina survived, as did all her children, but she never saw her husband again. In October of 1943, Evgeny Dering was killed by artillery shelling at a small marshy bridgehead on the Dnieper River… 

For Russians, Victory Day is literally a celebration of victory over death – one in which everyone was involved. Almost every family has a story about what their ancestors did during the war. These stories vary greatly, but they are almost always dramatic. Many have tales about people who died. The Soviet Union lost more than 27 million people during the war. About 12 million were soldiers and officers, while the rest were civilians who died at the hands of the Nazis during the fighting or from hunger. By the time Berlin had been taken and Adolf Hitler had committed suicide in his bunker in 1945, the USSR was a country where almost everyone mourned someone. A person who had lost ‘only’ friends was considered lucky. 

The Nazis waged war with extreme brutality. Jews were never spared, but nothing good awaited anyone else either. A Belarusian government database contains the names of 9,000 villages that were burned by the invaders during the war, and this was only in one of the Soviet Union’s occupied republics. In many of the destroyed hamlets, the number of victims is often identical to, or nearly matches, the number of their inhabitants, at the time. The most common method of extermination was to drive the population into a barn and set it on fire. People also died from shelling and starvation or were simply callously shot. Criminal acts committed against the civilian population were exempt from accountability under a special order issued by Hitler. 

A red cross provided no protection during the war – ambulances and ships were often destroyed by direct fire. No allowances were made for age either – children were killed on a par with adults. 

However, for us, the war is not just a story of monstrous cruelty. It is a legend of incredible national unity, where an ordinary worker and a world-renowned composer could converge in a volunteer fire brigade, and a young bohemian from Moscow could share bread with a miner from the Donbass and an Asian conscript from a Kazakh steppe village in a trench. It is a story of the remarkable ability not to give up when all circumstances seem to be against you and resistance seems futile. After each lost battle, the surviving officers would analyze their failures and try to figure out what they had done wrong and how to change the situation. It is a story of amazing self-sacrifice, when recruiting volunteers for a new division resembled a competitive university admissions process. 

And it is a story about military triumph. The Third Reich was a deadly enemy. The five-million strong invading army reached the Caucasus mountains and threatened to take Moscow and Leningrad, but nevertheless ended up being defeated. For us, it is a story about how we shed torrents of blood, but the army that came to kill us was completely destroyed, the enemy capital was taken by storm, the dictator who ordered the invasion committed suicide, and the banners of the losing army were thrown against the walls of the Kremlin. We paid a terrible price, but our triumph was absolute. 

In Russia, you rarely hear people say ‘World War II’. The term formulated in those times, ‘The Great Patriotic War’, is still in use today. This is not an attempt to somehow disregard what the Second World War was for others, but a desire to emphasize that, for us, it is still a kind of special event that goes beyond an ordinary armed conflict. For us, it is a truly heroic epic. It is the Iliad, a number of whose heroes are still alive and walking among us today. They are very old now, and yet some are still here. Our Ajax still sometimes goes out into his yard in the evenings, jingling medals for storming Vienna, to sit on a bench; our Diomedes can be seen every morning walking his dog. 

The memory of the war has influenced many aspects of life in Russia. You can hear it in personal stories, see it in culture, and even sense it in politics. Some of our government’s obsession with the security of the country’s western borders is a vestige of exactly that catastrophe, when we had to retreat to the very edge with our backs pressed against the wall. This memory seriously affects our relations with our neighbors and is nearly impossible to erase. 

But perhaps the main thing that we learned from the upheavals of that era is a simple truth: we can endure any difficulties, stand our ground, and rebuild our country after any trial. It is a memory not only of a feast of death, but also the triumph of life. 

…Evgeny Dering’s son, Gennady, never saw his father. He did not return to Leningrad and spent his childhood and youth in Makarevo. Fifteen years after the war, he met a girl named Albina, whom he married. These are my grandparents. They are still alive. Their daughter is my mom. Historical events often turn out to be surprisingly close to us today. 

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

Growing up Yellow Vest: Seeing French elites, not French people, conquered by neoliberalism

May 08, 2022

Source

By Ramin Mazaheri

World War II saw massive political gains by the lower classes and average person, but only via their own mass-murder. Many socio-economic demands which go back to 1789 and which animated the Revolutions of 1848 were put in place, finally.

(This is the ninth chapter in a new book, France’s Yellow Vests: Western Repression of the West’s Best Values. Please click here for the article which announces this book and explains its goals.)

The three biggest changes were that socialism was now firmly implanted on the global scene, women got the right to vote in France in 1944 and that the Western Liberal Democratic elite were discredited worse than ever.

That forced Western elite, who were now allying with fascists to forestall further socialist and anti-imperialist victories, to make political and economic concessions which they had resisted for a century. These subsequent 30 years – from 1945 to 1975 – are known as the “30 Glorious Years” in French history. During this period a broad economic stability was founded upon the stability, productivity, joy and long-sightedness which can only be provided by worker rights and influence, and by socialist-inspired levers and organisations.

The brief era of “Social Democracy” was officially terminated by the introduction of the euro (1999) and then the European Union (2009). EU citizenship was introduced in 1992 but its official installation was not until 2009, with the elite-only ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, which amended the constitutional basis of the EU, the Maastricht Treaty (1992) and the Treaty of Rome (1957). The Yellow Vests would be the flaming leftist economic and political reaction to this political-economic regression away from Social Democracy. The introduction of this version the pan-European project was a major regression in the threat of modern political history: to reduce the autocratic rights of elite and to increase the empowerment of the average person.

Sadly, it was only 30 years – one generation – before the autocratic and oligarchical elite began to retake power. When they do this effort is called “neoliberalism”, even though the first “neoliberalism” was with the start of 3rd Republic (1871-1940), which restored the immediately discredited and popularly rejected Liberalism of the 2nd Republic (1848-52). The goal of today’s “3rd-liberalism” is to end the Social Democracy era and to redistribute its gains back to the Liberalist 1%.

This book ignores the upheaval of 1968 in France – when a General Strike attracted 8 million workers in a country of 50 million people – for this reason: This is a book is about political changes, and the rebellion of 1968 only produced cultural changes. It was indeed a cultural revolution, but because it was not state-sponsored, as in China, where cultural changes were embraced by leaders like Mao Zedong, the Western Liberal Democratic elite successfully broke any chance of fully democratising from Social Democracy to Socialist Democracy. There’s no denying that this era’s cultural revolution (note the lower case) won advances in everyday culture but that is not the same as formal political-economic changes.

The political failures/cultural gains of this era would eventually reveal the continued rightward shift within the elite of the French left, and this can be illustrated by the path of Daniel Cohn-Bendit, the most prominent of the student leaders in 1968. In his memoirs he wrote that he was not seeking Marxist-inspired equality but simply more control over his personal life. These freedom of expression types of changes can perhaps be encapsulated in the freedom of students to now question their teachers in class. Cohn-Bendit would quit the Trotskyists, switched to the Green Party, became a devoted Europhile, reject the Yellow Vests and is now a close advisor to Emmanuel Macron – it’s an incredibly representative political trajectory of this era. Ecology is a subject completely neutered of class politics (even though the idea of a capitalist/competitive solution to ecological issues, and not socialist/cooperative solution, is an obvious absurdity) and thus is the political outlet most encouraged by contemporary Western Liberal Democratic elite.

However, we should note that for many decades already French socialism was primarily intellectual, and dominated by right-wing socialists: “Before the war of 1914-1918 only 20% of socialist deputies were workers while they had been 80% of the German socialist party (SPD), and they represented the totality of the English Labor party. The socialism of Jaures and Blum is, when it comes to leaders, a socialism of intellectuals and liberal professions,” wrote Romaric Godin in La guerre sociale en France (The Social War in France – 2019). Jean Jaures and Leon Blum were the right-leaning socialist leaders of their respective generations. Jaures is notable in that both Francois Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy both claimed to be continuing his legacy. Also notable is that whether worker or intellectual – 20th century West European socialists failed.

Between the USSR’s fall (1991) and China’s rise (starting in 2008) the French left’s economic ideology was in disunity and disarray at best and total betrayal at worst. Many also went whole-hog over to neo-imperialist culture, espousing right-wing “universal values” and embracing neo-colonial wars in the former Yugoslavia and the Muslim world.

The change began in 1974 with the death in office of President George Pompidou, Charles de Gaulle’s successor in the 5th Republic (1958-today), just a month before the presidential vote.

Neoliberalism starts to win over elites from Paris to Moscow, but the French keep protesting

Pompidou’s death effectively ended Gaullism, which had helped win World War II, presided over the “30 Glorious Years” and insisted on French sovereignty. The closet election in French history saw the victory of the aristocrat Valerie Giscard d’Estaing, a politician who was thus extremely familiar but also a new breed: Giscard d’Estaing was liberal on social issues, rejected Gaullist Euroscepticism and was extremely close with high finance – he served as Minister of Finance twice. We see how the “Bankocracy” has gone from not existing in 1789 France to running the executive branch. He marks the start of the third restoration of extremist Liberalist thought.

Liberals had been waiting decades to restore firm control, and they salivated at the prospect of dividing up the spoils created by the 30 Glorious Years. Using the excuse of inflation cased by a rise in oil prices in 1973, free competition was reimposed after decades of abandonment, austerity was imposed for the first time, salaries were frozen, compulsory salary taxes soared ten points to nearly 30% and the despised CDD work contract was created. (The despised contrat à durée déterminée is a temporary employment contract which renders life in France extremely difficult and unstable. It’s usual length is one month and then it is renewed endlessly, without ever becoming a long-term contract. As the French do not have hourly wages, the CDD can perhaps be thought of as “part-time work”.) Seigniorial dues and tithes were not restored.

It would not be until 2016 that a team of economists at the International Monetary Fund would release a paper which admits that austerity doesn’t work. The economic massacring of the lower and middle class which is austerity would be the reason for the upcoming years recession, although the mainstream history is that it was entirely due to the rise in oil prices.

France was not alone in its first steps towards the restoration of Liberalism. The United States responded to energy inflation with the “Volcker Shock” in March 1980: a huge rise in interest rates which gutted the average person’s primary asset class – the housing market. The UK and Germany turned to wage suppression. It’s vital to note that the same elite capture was also occurring in the USSR. By Christmas 1991 it would be imploded from the top: their elite infamously ignored a high-turnout referendum in March in which 80% of the nation voted to preserve the USSR.

Unsurprisingly, the French voter rebelled: Giscard d’Estaing was voted out in 1981. A socialist-communist backing of Francois Mitterrand’s economic platform – the most socialist economic plan ever promoted in the non-Eastern Bloc Europe – was a repeat of 1936. However, by 1983 he infamously made his U-turn back to austerity (more on this shortly) – French elites had fully accepted the terms of Liberalism.

Yellow Vest: “I worked from the age of 14 until the age of 60, and in my entire life I accepted only 1 month of unemployment insurance. And yet, in the last 4 years I have seen my pension lowered from 1,150 euros to 1,050 euros. My rent is 800 euros a month, so I cannot afford to live, and I will never accept this injustice.”

(Note: this book intersperses over 100 quotations taken from actual, marching Yellow Vests which were originally published in news reports on PressTV.)

By 1986 French neoliberalism was in full swing: the abolishment of price controls, the end of controls on exchange rates and the deregulation of financial markets in order to do what modern Western financial markets do – divert the wealth produced by people who actually work into the bank accounts of the 1%. Mass de-nationalisations began: General Electric Company, Suez, Paribas and Société Générale (banks), Saint-Gobain and Matra (industrial giants).

The average Frenchman would not accept the death of Social Democracy as complacently as in the rest of the West, and that fact is certainly in keeping with the line of West European history since 1789 – the Yellow Vests only confirm this line further. The French responded to the restoration of Liberalism over socialist-inspired ideas with massive, broadly-encompassing and successful social movements: protests against proposed university reforms in 1986 and rail reforms in 1987. The “Touche pas à mon pote” (Don’t touch my buddy) movement marked the introduction of French Muslims into French political movements.

Godin, who is also the economics reporter for France’s top media, Mediapart, wrote: “The error of (then prime minister) Jacques Chirac in 1986 was to think that he could force through a new culture which could sweep away the past, as Margaret Thatcher did across the Channel. However, the French showed their capacity to resist the complete destruction of their social model.”

In France from 1986 until 1995 efforts at restoring liberalism were stopped by massive social movements: against worse work contracts in 1994, retirement and social security cutbacks in 1995. The 1995 General Strike was the largest since 1968, and the political introduction for a new generation. Starting in 1992, the excuse of the need to “qualify” for the euro currency – and thus right-wing rollbacks were needed – was unconvincing to the average Frenchman as well.

From 1995-2007 the attempts at major neoliberal reforms were less ambitious and, crucially, began to offer some monetary redistribution efforts as compensation for right-wing deforms. This is partially explained by the inflation which immediately followed the introduction of the euro in 1999. The reforms of 1994 would fail again in 2006 when they were attempted to be rammed through, due to more protests.

But by 2002 the leftist voter had partially revolted against the traitorous French left – the National Front made it to the 2nd round at the expense of the ever-more un-socialist Socialist Party. The far-right party – totally neoliberal in economics – was led by Jean-Marie Le Pen, a former intelligence officer in Algeria. Like with Cavaignac in 1848, once again Algerian colonisation has provided the entry point for the most extreme-right and anti-socialist elements in French domestic politics.

The National Front’s advancement to the runoff was precisely due to the left’s now two decade-long embrace of neoliberalism despite the rejection of neoliberalism by its constituents. The French mainstream media like to blame Mitterrand’s party-gerrymandering, but that’s a distant secondary reality from the fact that voters opposed this third return of liberalism. However, unlike in 1852 there was no Bonapartism to send Liberalists packing, and unlike in 1945 liberalists had not yet had a long-running economic crisis deep enough and/or war to fully discredit them.

The 2005 French European Constitution referendum was essentially a referendum on neoliberalism, and it lost by a 55-45% margin. The majority of the French Socialist Party would vote yes, and that effort would be led by future president Francois Hollande. Three days later the Netherlands would also vote no, by a 62-38% margin. Aghast, Western Liberal Democrats decided that this would essentially be the end of putting the concept of the European Union to popular votes.

Yellow Vest: “The government doesn’t listen to us at all. The economic situation keeps getting worse, the prices are rising, and the government’s response is to attack the Yellow Vests to keep us from telling the truth.”

In May of 2007 neoliberalism made a huge inroad in France with the election of Nicolas “l’Américain” Sarkozy, the son of a Hungarian nobleman. Sarkozy was the first French politician since World War II to break totally with even lip service to being an anti-monarchist in style and ideology. Giscard d’Estaing at least made regular and often poorly-received efforts to shed his aristocratic pretensions and appear close with the average person. The pernicious influence of monarchy was still grasped in France then, but the new millennium has seen Western culture re-cultivate the idea that greed is good and that the aristocracy are our betters.

Sarkozy would make France the first major European power to approve the new Lisbon Treaty, which put the installation of the European Union into the hands of the elite: the Maastricht Treaty was reformed to allow the installation of the EU via the approval of national parliaments and not popular referendums. French Socialist MPs overwhelmingly voted in favor of this coup in plain sight.

The method (oligarchical approval) and context (an economic collapse unseen since 1929) of the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty cannot be stressed enough, as it unmistakably reveals that in the history of Western Liberal Democracy the installation of EU was the latest in a never-ending line of autocratic decisions by their oligarchical elites. Again, by understanding modern political history (which began in 1789) as a move away from autocracy and towards democracy we see how the EU is a regression and not a progression.

Only Ireland was able to achieve a popular referendum on the Lisbon Treaty: when the first vote produced a rejection a re-vote was forced the following year, when it passed. Every other member approved the installation by a vote in their national parliaments, as well as six royal assents.

This is a precise repeat of when the parliamentarians of the French 2nd Republic, the continent’s first Western Liberal Democracy, committed coups against the people via voting to submit the 1848 Constitution to the majority approval of parliament, and then to gut the primary advance of the 1848 Revolution, universal male suffrage. The populist reaction then was the democratic approval of the re-installation of Bonapartism in 1852, with Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte, who restored universal suffrage and ended the disastrous first foray of Western Liberal Democracy.

The vast majority of nations would ratify the Lisbon Treaty between February and July of 2008, a disastrous year. The collapse of Lehman Brothers investment firm that September is the official start of the Great Recession, but the US Federal Reserve held its first emergency weekend meeting in 30 years back in March, to negotiate the shocking collapse of the Bear Stearns investment group. Thus, it’s not as if European elite weren’t aware of major issues brewing. Four countries, including Germany, would not fully ratify the treaty until after the fall of Lehman Brothers. We can certainly call it an amazing coincidence: how the elite Liberalist politicians successfully forced through the European Union mere weeks before economic collapse struck?

The Treaty would be fully ratified in November 2009 amid mass bankruptcy, home foreclosures, unemployment and that slogan which is the essence of British conservatism: “Keep calm and carry on”. The pan-European project was now complete and – as we’ll see – largely unchangeable. The European Union thus joined only Saudi Arabia, Israel, San Marino and the UK Commonwealth as having citizenry but no constitution.

The European Union thus was born amid the Great Recession – it has never been willing or able to end it.

The next chapter will deal with three related events – the Great Recession, the European Sovereign Debt Crisis and the Age of Austerity – which left the French populace too skeptical, resentful and experienced to allow the extremist Liberalist policies and autocratic personality of Emmanuel Macron to go uncommented upon, as he apparently had assumed.

This chapter has thus far shown how the French people, but not the elites, successfully fought the 3rd restoration of liberalism which so many other countries embraced even before the implosion of the Soviet Union. We should now turn to these new Liberalist structures.

I should note that in this era of Socialist Democratic collapse the last great progressive revolution of our contemporary times – the Iranian Islamic Revolution – victoriously emerged from the ashes of the Western-imposed Iran-Iraq War in 1988. They found very few sympathisers to the socialist-inspired country it had just forged, and then 9/11 would create not just skepticism but violent animosity towards seemingly all things Islamic.

The European Union – capitalist cartel or France’s idea of a progressive & united continent?

Yes, it’s pathetically easy to dismiss any discussion of the European Union as being merely an extension of aristocratic autocracy: since 1992 there have been eight national referendums which rejected key aspects of the European Union only to be either ignored or subverted by oligarchical elites. Nonetheless, if we insist (rightly) that another version of the pan-European project is possible then we need to see how France has repeatedly proposed an alternative vision of a united Europe, and one which wouldn’t have been embraced by the liberalists of 1848 or 1871.

Just as Lenin saw that the principal feature of modern capitalism is monopoly, so the EU began in 1951 as an undemocratic cartel to fix prices for coal and steel. The European Coal and Steel Community also included a multinational bureaucracy which was empowered to ignore national parliaments and laws.

Was the EU always intended to be just a capitalist cartel? It’s possible, but we cannot completely ignore France’s historical trend since 1789, which is to be more often than not at the progressive forefront of the West.

In the WWII postwar reckoning France was excluded: de Gaulle was famously not invited to the Yalta Conference in February 1945. Thus, France immediately saw that the US and UK liberalists were only dealing with the head of Western leftism since 1917, the USSR. After the Labor Party defeated Winston Churchill in July 1945, just two months after the defeat of the Germans, the rabidly anti-socialist US called off the in-progress plan to de-industrialise Germany and instead tapped West Germany for their imperial collaborators in Europe. That is why Germany is the industrial powerhouse of Europe today even though they provoked and lost WWII: Western Liberal Democracy’s alliance with postwar fascists couldn’t be more clear. This was a crucial historical decision which laid the foundation for German domination of the Eurozone and EU today. Many would add that it is a US domination of the Eurozone and EU, and via their longtime dependant in Germany.

By the 1960s French elites were well aware that they could not compete industrially with America’s creation of a German Frankenstein, so in their conception of a pan-European project they wanted to join with – not conquer – Germany. In some ways this is a continuation of the Franco-German elite alliance in 1871, but there is a very different factor this time: the imperialist United States.

Historically, no country’s elite has pushed harder for European unification than France, and that’s because the European Union was seen by many French elite as something which could serve as a Franco-German bulwark against imperial domination – that of the United States. The idea of total French enmity with Germany since 1871 is a short-term view – the two neighbors share a tremendous number of cultural similarities, values, multiple regions and several millions of Franco-German citizens in Alsace, Lorraine and in Alpine regions. France uniquely combines both the cultures of Latin/Mediterranean Europe and Northern Europe, after all. Some further add that France is a Latin country but run by a Northern elite. European unification was seen by many in Paris as an effort to preserve the sovereignty of both nations and to create a counterbalance to the obviously domineering US. In this way we can say that the European Union was the latest in two centuries of effort by France to unite Europe in a more progressive way – the problem is the awful, undemocratic structures which this version of a pan-European project would ultimately adopt.

The foundational Élysée Treaty of friendship between France and Germany, signed in 1963, was a clear attempt to separate West Germany from the Anglosphere. The US was livid at France’s attempt at undermining the US-imposed postwar order: “I can hardly overestimate the shock produced in Washington by this action or the speculation that followed, particularly in the intelligence community,” said top US diplomat and banker George Ball.

The French understood that the 1944 Bretton Woods monetary system (when accounts began being regularly settled not in gold but in dollars) was not meant as a balanced system of international trade and financial flows but as an instrument of US domination via the dollar. Europe’s participation meant it supported American living standards and subsidised American companies. That the US could print unlimited dollars for unlimited imports was famously deemed an “exorbitant privilege” by France, but postwar France could do nothing about it until 1965.

The US deficit exploded in the mid-1960s, mostly due to their imperialist wars in East Asia. France and de Gaulle openly demanded a reform of the Bretton Woods system, a return to the gold standard and began repatriating French gold from New York City banks. “Perhaps never before had a chief of state launched such an open assault on the monetary power of a friendly nation,” wrote Time magazine in February 1965. In 1967 France was the first to withdraw from the West’s London Gold Pool, hastily constructed in 1961 to defend Bretton Woods. Unlike the UK and Germany, France was not always so subservient to the United States.

The truth which financial media never wants to tell is that France had a genuine commitment to a pan-Europeanism guided by a mixed socialist/pro-growth/not-rabidly-capitalist economic plan. This mirrors France’s own postwar “Mixed Economy” model, in which the state gives short- and long-term targets for industry to meet, and aids them to achieve it. There’s planning and state ownership – not at the level of a communist state but enough to enrage liberalists. There is also a commitment to a social safety net because endless austerity is simply not sustainable if French elite wish to avoid further revolutions. France’s Mixed Economy is also not at the level of Japan, where the state’s role was much larger (until the Plaza Accord of 1985, signed by Japan, the US, France, West Germany and the UK), and where economic success was spectacularly greater.

France’s contemporary effort to fight far-right economics and austerity did not begin with Francois Hollande’s 2012 election campaign campaign but began three decades earlier. So why did Mitterrand’s anti-3rd liberalist “Common Project” culminate in a U-turn in in 1983? Of course, just like in 1936, 1871 or 1848 the primary reason is that Western Liberal Democracy is an oligarchy which refuses to listen to the majority will of the people (as in a normal democracy). But in 1983 the power of a completely united globalist rich class – one undivided by royalist squabbles or support for the national sovereignty proposed in fascism – could be wielded as one. This same tool – the “Bankocracy” of international high finance – would also be used to provoke the 2012 European Sovereign Debt Crisis.

Despite a huge democratic mandate to end Giscard d’Estaing’s austerity and restore growth polices, France was immediately foiled by high finance and currency speculators. Capital flight from France to Germany immediately took place and long-term borrowing rates (10-year bond) went from 9.6% in March 1979 all the way to 17.3% in May 1981, when Mitterrand was elected. Government bonds, as Marx foresaw, are the indispensable lifeblood of the biggest economic actor in any capitalist country: the government. After devaluing the franc three times Mitterrand was forced into submission. He made his U-turn and by March 1986 10-year bonds were at 9.3%.

Yellow Vest: “The British have shown us that it is possible to obtain a referendum on leaving the European Union. However, the French media refuses to ever discuss the issue at all, but many in France will not stop demanding a Frexit.”

What happened was that Germany and the Bundesbank, knowing that Western high-finance was philosophically in their corner and willing to destroy France’s democratic will with every dollar they could borrow, joined with global high finance and professional currency speculators to strangle France into backtracking on socialist-inspired policies. If high finance cared at all for democracy they would have supported France’s anti-austerity plan. However such an idea is as absurd today as it was to socialists, fascists and even the apolitical in the 1930s, and also to those opposing the nouveau riche backers of the House of Orleans in 1830’s July Revolution.

France could not boldly defy high finance and keep devaluing their currency until growth took hold for another crucial reason: they would have had to abandon the 1979-inaugurated European Monetary System (EMS), the financial predecessor of the euro. This was an adjustable exchange rate agreement which linked 10 Western European currencies to prevent large fluctuations. It was France’s brainchild for their long-term goal: wooing Germany away from the US and towards a genuinely European integration. Preferring to stay in the EMS meant violating the people’s democratic will demanding an anti-austerity agenda – this process would obviously be repeated ad nauseam.

By 1993 the European Union would begin, which replaced the European Economic Community, which in 1957 had replaced the original European Coal and Steel Community. The euro currency would arrive six years later – the new structures would fully end the Social Democracy era.

In 2012 Hollande was the hope of an entire “Latin Bloc” against Germanic austerity, once again, but he would do the exact same U-turn. However, he showed far less resolve than Mitterrand and faced far less pressure: 10-year bonds stood at 2.75% when Hollande was elected and and they fell immediately – high finance seemed to know the longtime Europhile Hollande’s anti-austerity promises were election nonsense. French 10-year bonds stood at 0.81% when he left office, in total disgrace and with the Socialist Party perhaps permanently smashed.

More important than the EU – the Eurogroup

Part of the problem of talking about the “pan-European project” is that you have multiple bodies which overlap. You also have some nations which are part of one, but not another. Or which pay into one body, but abstain from another.

The Eurozone is more important than the European Union because it controls the money in the world’s second largest macro-economic bloc behind the US (in 2008). By comparison, the EU is mainly a regulatory body, and their modest annual budget – about the size of Denmark’s – reflects that.

All serious studies of the eurozone – from Nobel Prize-winning economists, such as Joseph Stiglitz, to those with insider knowledge of how it operates, such as former Greek Finance Minster Yanis Varoufakis – stress that there is nothing in its structure which allows for the possibility for change. That’s a pretty vital and damning conclusion to be consistently reached, especially when post-1991 Europe loves to stand on its hind legs and lecture the rest of the world about democracy. Objective studies reach another regular conclusion, and it’s one which is shared by the lower- and middle-class: the euro has totally failed in its promise to bring about prosperity and economic security.

The Eurozone was a clear replication of the German Zollverein, led by Prussia during the 19th century, which was the world’s first example of independent states creating a full economic union without also creating a political union. Germanifying an area of German-speaking peoples and cultures is one thing, but trying to replicate that for all of Europe has only led to dramatic inequalities.

The Eurozone thus embodies the victory of Germanic economic ideology in tandem with the victory of English oligarchic parliamentarianism in political ideology – this is perhaps the simplest essence of Western Liberal Democracy: England’s Glorious Revolution of 1688 combined with the Germanic commitment to the economic autocracy of the elite. The French are often called the intellectuals of Europe, but it’s far more accurate to call them the ignored intellectuals of Europe: the history of Europe since 1789 is the defeat of French intellectual egalitarianism and the victory of the aristocratic thought of Anglo-Germanic intellectuals.

To examine the Eurozone you have to bring up something which mainstream media is instructed to ignore – the Eurogroup.

The Eurogroup rules the Eurozone and its 19 member states, and it also governs the “bailouts” to member nations like Greece. The Eurogroup is, at face value, an informal monthly meeting of the finance ministers of the euro member countries.

However, it is no exaggeration to say that the Eurogroup is the banker cabal hidden in plain sight. It is truly the expression of the autocratic and oligarchical forces which go back to 1788. Gone are the Bourbons and Orleanists, though of course they remain on the boards of banks and hedge funds.

In his 2017 book And The Weak Suffer What They Must? Varoufakis provided a wealth of insider knowledge on how the Eurogroup operates.

“Moreover, the Eurogroup, where all the important economic decisions are taken, is a body that does not even exist in European law, that operates on the basis that the ‘strong do as they please while the weak suffer what they must’, that keeps no minutes of its proceedings, and whose only rule is that its deliberations are confidential – that is, not to be shared with Europe’s citizenry. It is a set-up designed to preclude any sovereignty traceable back to the people of Europe.”

What can we say of Western Liberal Democracy when their most advanced economic achievement is governed by an entity with no rules, no records, no democratic process and no democratic accountability? It is truly a return to 1788 – the time when the average person had no say in politics or economics. Every French person should be able to recognise in 21st century Western Liberal Democracy the autocratic domination which even the many European kings of today recognise is no longer unacceptable.

Thanks to the whistle-blowing of Varoufakis we also know that there is also essentially no discussion at Eurogroup meetings: The Troika (the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission) initiates, dominates and outlines the terms and then the finance minister-members vote. The overwhelming majority of participants in this group which governs eurozone economic policy (and thus social policy) are bankers, former bankers or intimately tied to high finance.

When bankers run economic policy, one shouldn’t be surprised if the resulting social policy is for the benefit of bankers and their biggest aristocratic clients. Yes, the EU is obviously a Bankocracy, but Bankocracy is simply the modern form of rule by an oligarchy of the rich and powerful. It is as if the new banker class in 1830’s France didn’t just put the House of Orleans on the throne and boot out the House of Bourbon, but as if the new banker class assassinated all Houses, restored serfdom and declared that they had a divine right to rule. Their obvious goal is the rollback of mere Social Democracy, and to reattempt a destruction of any Socialist Democracies.

The Eurogroup is not an EU institution and cannot declare any legally-binding decisions. It can never be blamed for a bad decision, nor held accountable, because it is not answerable to any parliament or body politic whatsoever. Many are increasingly asking in France and Europe: What’s the point of voting for any national or EU politician if they have little to no chance of influencing policy? Many don’t even realise that the highest level of policymaking is actually the Eurogroup.

Yellow Vest: “In France’s 5th Republic when someone is elected president they can do whatever they want for five years because we truly have no way to influence them. This is why the Yellow Vests are insisting that Macron accept regular citizen referendums on his policies, because he is destroying French society.”

(Of course, what will occur when citizen referendums oppose the decisions of the Eurogroup? The European Union will step in and either totally ignore the referendum, call it illegal or regulate them away.)

It is self-evident that that when politics does not rule – where there is no law or regulation – the rich are the rulers. It is also self-evident that in a climate of total deregulation the richest nations and persons will benefit the most, thus inequality will increase. It is also self-evident that when billionaires and hedge funds own the bulk of a deregulated and denationalised media there will be very little discussion of the Eurogroup in the mainstream media. This is what has happened throughout the history of the Eurogroup, which operated without formal recognition until the Lisbon Treaty.

Unsurprisingly, the US pioneered the concept of mass deregulation in the early 1980s, which they foisted on Europe as much as possible when their academics, think tanks and intellectuals helped oversee the writing of the new structures of the pan-European projects. It is thus no exaggeration to say that – coming after the so-called “end of history” and Liberalism’s alleged total victory following the fall of the USSR – the Eurogroup has achieved the American dream of total deregulation even more than in America.

For the Eurogroup to become remotely democratic and not autocratic/oligarchic a Eurozone constitution would have to be created, an executive would seem useful, a legislative branch would be indispensable and approval power over national budgets would seem necessary. Only the last is already in existence, but why would they add any Liberal or Socialist Democracy to this Bankocracy? Answer: they never will create this in any sort of equitable format.

Such facts make it clear why the Eurogroup cannot be considered compatible with democracy, and thus cannot be supported. One might support creating a new Eurozone or changes to the Eurozone structure, but supporting the current Eurozone is simply indefensible. The European corollary to the post-1991 dictum of TINA (There Is No Alternative (to imperialism and liberalism)) is that there is no alternative permitted to this version of a pan-European project.

Because change is impossible the elites’ goal is thus forced ignorance and silence, and when that fails, deflection: “To believe that Europe’s problem was debt. Not the architectural design of the Eurozone. Not its unenforceable rules. But debt. Debt was never Europe’s problem. It was a symptom of an awful institutional design,” wrote Varoufakis.

From 1999 until 2007 it’s said that the Eurozone had a short period of success in redistributing wealth. This is based on the fact that rich Eurozone countries decided to loan to their Eurozone brethren in poorer countries. As is always the case in capitalist countries, and as was seen in previous recessions, and as is evidenced in the history of countless Western Third World client states – once economic troubles hit these loans were called in and could no longer be repaid, creating even more crisis.

Liberalism fully restored for the third time – exact same result: immediate failure

The 2009 European Sovereign Debt Crisis will go down in history as the time when the EU both started working and then immediately started dying. The response to the crisis by Brussels and the newly rammed-through governmental structures made clear that the economic solidarity which would be required of richer nations to make “more Europe” work simply does not exist.

The parallel of its literally-immediate democratic discrediting with France’s 2nd Republic should be striking to all readers of this book, and should remind that Western Liberal Democracy has only produced failure. This is especially true when the outlet of imperialist war is not an option for this structure – France’s 3rd Republic (when Liberalism was re-imposed) took advantage of this option to the maximum, as the 3rd Republic’s imperial empire was one of history’s most expansive.

As the European Sovereign Debt Crisis turned into the Age of Austerity Europe’s richer nations got what they wanted from weaker Eurozone countries – ports, airports, water departments, laws favouring their own industries against local industries, etc. They did this all while claiming that Western Liberal Democracy was so much more just than any ideological competitors!

Pro-capitalist American media may be persuaded by the German accusation of profligate smaller countries, but most of Europe saw the democratic will of nation after nation get strangled until their national politicians surrendered. Around the continent (and the UK) many realised that the EU and Eurozone was sucking the lifeblood of White locals the way White colonialists used to suck the lifeblood of Brown locals. Some understood that the forcing of the governments of Greece, Ireland, Portugal and other weak countries to assume the private debts of French and German banks was simply a repeat of what happened all over the 3rd World since the late 19th century – neo-imperialism was not just for Brown puppets anymore, but White puppets too.

2009 thus became the historical bookend to 1871’s siege of Paris, when the elite of France and Germany colluded to destroy the first flowering of Social Democracy and Socialist Democracy in the Paris Commune. French and German banks were the most leveraged in Greece; are the two biggest funders of the European Central Bank; were the most insistent that promises of borrowers to their bankers are sacrosanct while the promises of national politicians to their voters are not. The victory of the neoliberal and neo-imperial EU empire was thus fully imposed, and – amid the heat – Bismarck and Thiers looked up and smiled.

None of this was missed by the as yet unformed Yellow Vests.

<—>

Upcoming chapter list of the brand-new content in France’s Yellow Vests: Western Repression of the West’s Best Values. The book will also include previous writings from 2018 through the 2022 election in order to provide the most complete historical record of the Yellow Vests anywhere. What value!

Publication date: July 1, 2022.

Pre-orders of the paperback version will be available immediately.

Pre-orders of the Kindle version may be made here.

Pre-orders of the French paperback version will be available immediately.

Pre-orders of the French Kindle version may be made here.

Chapter List of the new content

Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for PressTV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. He is the author of ‘Socialism’s Ignored Success: Iranian Islamic Socialism’ as well as ‘I’ll Ruin Everything You Are: Ending Western Propaganda on Red China’, which is also available in simplified and traditional Chinese.

President Putin of Russia: speech on Red Square Victory Parade

May 09, 2022

Victory Parade on Red Square

President of Russia – Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Federation Armed Forces Vladimir Putin attended a military parade marking the 77th anniversary of Victory in the 1941–1945 Great Patriotic War.

Overall, 11,000 personnel and 131 units of military equipment were engaged in the parade.

* * *

Address by the President of Russia at the military parade

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Fellow Russian citizens,

Dear veterans,

Comrade soldiers and seamen, sergeants and sergeant majors, midshipmen and warrant officers,

Comrade officers, generals and admirals,

I congratulate you on the Day of Great Victory!

The defence of our Motherland when its destiny was at stake has always been sacred. It was the feeling of true patriotism that Minin and Pozharsky’s militia stood up for the Fatherland, soldiers went on the offensive at the Borodino Field and fought the enemy outside Moscow and Leningrad, Kiev and Minsk, Stalingrad and Kursk, Sevastopol and Kharkov.

Today, as in the past, you are fighting for our people in Donbass, for the security of our Motherland, for Russia.

May 9, 1945 has been enshrined in world history forever as a triumph of the united Soviet people, its cohesion and spiritual power, an unparalleled feat on the front lines and on the home front.

Victory Day is intimately dear to all of us. There is no family in Russia that was not burnt by the Great Patriotic War. Its memory never fades. On this day, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the heroes march in an endless flow of the Immortal Regiment. They carry photos of their family members, the fallen soldiers who remained young forever, and the veterans who are already gone.

We take pride in the unconquered courageous generation of the victors, we are proud of being their successors, and it is our duty to preserve the memory of those who defeated Nazism and entrusted us with being vigilant and doing everything to thwart the horror of another global war.

Therefore, despite all controversies in international relations, Russia has always advocated the establishment of an equal and indivisible security system which is critically needed for the entire international community.

Last December we proposed signing a treaty on security guarantees. Russia urged the West to hold an honest dialogue in search for meaningful and compromising solutions, and to take account of each other’s interests. All in vain. NATO countries did not want to heed us, which means they had totally different plans. And we saw it.

Another punitive operation in Donbass, an invasion of our historic lands, including Crimea, was openly in the making. Kiev declared that it could attain nuclear weapons. The NATO bloc launched an active military build-up on the territories adjacent to us.

Thus, an absolutely unacceptable threat to us was steadily being created right on our borders. There was every indication that a clash with neo-Nazis and Banderites backed by the United States and their minions was unavoidable.

Let me repeat, we saw the military infrastructure being built up, hundreds of foreign advisors starting work, and regular supplies of cutting-edge weaponry being delivered from NATO countries. The threat grew every day.

Russia launched a pre-emptive strike at the aggression. It was a forced, timely and the only correct decision. A decision by a sovereign, strong and independent country.

The United States began claiming their exceptionalism, particularly after the collapse of the Soviet Union, thus denigrating not just the entire world but also their satellites, who have to pretend not to see anything, and to obediently put up with it.

But we are a different country. Russia has a different character. We will never give up our love for our Motherland, our faith and traditional values, our ancestors’ customs and respect for all peoples and cultures.

Meanwhile, the West seems to be set to cancel these millennia-old values. Such moral degradation underlies the cynical falsifications of World War II history, escalating Russophobia, praising traitors, mocking their victims’ memory and crossing out the courage of those who won the Victory through suffering.

We are aware that US veterans who wanted to come to the parade in Moscow were actually forbidden to do so. But I want them to know: We are proud of your deeds and your contribution to our common Victory.

We honour all soldiers of the allied armies – the Americans, the English, the French, Resistance fighters, brave soldiers and partisans in China – all those who defeated Nazism and militarism.

Comrades,

Donbass militia alongside with the Russian Army are fighting on their land today, where princes Svyatoslav and Vladimir Monomakh’s retainers, solders under the command of Rumyantsev and Potemkin, Suvorov and Brusilov crushed their enemies, where Great Patriotic War heroes Nikolai Vatutin, Sidor Kovpak and Lyudmila Pavlichenko stood to the end.

I am addressing our Armed Forces and Donbass militia. You are fighting for our Motherland, its future, so that nobody forgets the lessons of World War II, so that there is no place in the world for torturers, death squads and Nazis.

Today, we bow our heads to the sacred memory of all those who lost their lives in the Great Patriotic War, the memories of the sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, grandfathers, husbands, wives, brothers, sisters, relatives and friends.

We bow our heads to the memory of the Odessa martyrs who were burned alive in the House of Trade Unions in May 2014, to the memory of the old people, women and children of Donbass who were killed in atrocious and barbaric shelling by neo-Nazis. We bow our heads to our fighting comrades who died a brave death in the righteous battle – for Russia.

I declare a minute of silence.

(A minute of silence.)

The loss of each officer and soldier is painful for all of us and an irretrievable loss for the families and friends. The government, regional authorities, enterprises and public organisations will do everything to wrap such families in care and help them. Special support will be given to the children of the killed and wounded comrades-in-arms. The Presidential Executive Order to this effect was signed today.

I wish a speedy recovery to the wounded soldiers and officers, and I thank doctors, paramedics, nurses and staff of military hospitals for their selfless work. Our deepest gratitude goes to you for saving each life, oftentimes sparing no thought for yourselves under shelling on the frontlines.

Comrades,

Soldiers and officers from many regions of our enormous Motherland, including those who arrived straight from Donbass, from the combat area, are standing now shoulder-to-shoulder here, on Red Square.

We remember how Russia’s enemies tried to use international terrorist gangs against us, how they tried to seed inter-ethnic and religious strife so as to weaken us from within and divide us. They failed completely.

Today, our warriors of different ethnicities are fighting together, shielding each other from bullets and shrapnel like brothers.

This is where the power of Russia lies, a great invincible power of our united multi-ethnic nation.

You are defending today what your fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers fought for. The wellbeing and security of their Motherland was their top priority in life. Loyalty to our Fatherland is the main value and a reliable foundation of Russia’s independence for us, their successors, too.

Those who crushed Nazism during the Great Patriotic War showed us an example of heroism for all ages. This is the generation of victors, and we will always look up to them.

Glory to our heroic Armed Forces!

For Russia! For Victory!

Hooray!

Laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

NATO: The Founding Lie

May 1, 2022

German commentator, lecturer and writer. He is considered to be a leading “intervening philosopher”.

By Werner Rugemer

Source

After the 2nd World War in 1945 the USA knew: There is no danger from the weakened Soviet Union. But with the pincer grip of the Marshall Plan and NATO, the USA integrated the Western, Northern and Southern European countries into its economic and military expansion. Ex-Nazis and ex-Nazi collaborators were promoted, on the other hand anti-fascist parties, movements, persons were eliminated, infiltrated, bought. At the same time, the U.S. also helped the governments to fight against liberation movements in the colonies – also because of raw materials for US corporations. After 1990, the founding lie and thus the military-capitalist pincer grip was continued with the “eastward expansion”: Always first NATO membership, then EU membership. This includes the dismantling of prosperity and freedom for the majority populations: The EU and more and more US corporations, investors and consultants are organizing Americanization with working poor, working sick as well as legalized and illegal labor migration – at the same time militarization and hostility against Russia is being expanded: Domination of Eurasia from Lisbon to Vladivostok was the plan from the beginning.

We bring a chapter from the book by Werner Rügemer: Imperium EU – Labor Injustice, Crisis, New Resistances, tredition 2021. Of course, the war in Ukraine does not play a role in it yet, but it becomes explainable in some respects. Sources have been omitted.

Russia after World War 2: No danger

In the run-up to the founding of NATO, those responsible in the USA knew: The Soviet Union posed no military danger. The weakened power could not sustain an attack on Western Europe even if it wanted to: The Soviet Union’s economy is largely destroyed and technologically obsolete; its transportation system is too primitive; its oil industry is easy to attack. Nor does the Soviet Union have the atomic bomb. “The men in the Kremlin are clever tyrants who will not risk their internal power by military adventures abroad. They want to win the battle for Germany and Europe, but not by military action,” was the judgment of George Kennan, the chief planner in the State Department, for State Department chief Marshall, for President Truman, and for U.S. ambassadors in various memoranda in 1948.

But why did the U.S. and its then still few allies nonetheless establish NATO, a military alliance expressly directed against the Soviet Union?

The Legend of the Cold War

The legend states that NATO was a “product of the Cold War” after the end of World War 2. In reality, NATO is a product of U.S. expansion, which was already underway before U.S. military intervention in WWII.

The “cold war” is one of the most resourceful ideological constructs used by the U.S. opinion machine to disguise U.S. practices from WW2 to the present. The term was popularized by the most important US ideologue of the 20th century: Walter Lippmann, father of “neoliberalism.”

“Cold War” is supposed to mean: After WW2, the military war is over, and the phase of non-military confrontation between the “free West” and the “communist Eastern Bloc” begins. But during the “cold war” the USA and the first NATO countries waged hot, very hot wars, e.g. in Greece, Korea, the Philippines, in Africa and Indochina – this will have to be returned to.

In reality, the “cold” war began shortly after the war started, around 1941. Roosevelt and Churchill intervened militarily as late as possible in the war – despite repeated requests from their ally Stalin: The Red Army and the German Wehrmacht were to destroy each other as much as possible. The U.S. and British governments also rejected in principle to assist any internal resistance to Hitler. Wall Street lawyer Allen Dulles, as head of the intelligence agency Office of Stragic Services (OSS) based in Switzerland, did not want the assassins of July 20, 1944 to succeed – the U.S. military wanted to prevent an early armistice with the Soviet Union at all costs. The Red Army was to suffer as high losses as possible in the further fight against Hitler’s Wehrmacht.

Advancing the U.S. “defense” line to Europe

Walter Lippmann, a Harvard graduate who initially saw himself as a leftist and socialist, had helped organize the propaganda for the U.S. entry into the war for the U.S. War Department during World War I (Committee on Public Information, CPI): In 1917, the pacifist neutrality pledge of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson was to be reversed, and the U.S. entry into the war was now to be justified.

After that, Lippmann had theoretically justified and journalistically accompanied the global expansion of the USA in a prominent position – especially concerning Europe and Japan. In 1938, as an opponent of Roosevelt’s reform course (New Deal), he had brought together the later gurus of “neoliberal” economic theory such as Friedrich Hayek, Alexander Rüstow and Raymond Aron: It was here that the euphemistic term “neoliberalism” was coined for the global, anti-union, anti-communist sharpened doctrine of capitalism.

In March 1943, Lippmann wrote: After conquering North America, Central America, the Caribbean, the Philippines, and several islands in the Pacific (Wake, Guam, Hawai, Japanese Mandate Islands), the U.S. had been forced to “defend two-thirds of the earth’s surface from our continental base in North America.” Now, however, with the foreseeable defeat of the Axis powers of Germany, Japan, Italy, and their allies and collaborators, much broader access is opening up.

The U.S. will now no longer be able to “defend” its previously conquered territories, the geostrategist said, solely from its North American territory and scattered islands in the Pacific. Rather, America can and must now decisively expand its “defense” line “by basing our foreign policy on reliable alliances in the old world.” New U.S. bases could now be established in Europe and Japan. This would allow the U.S. to move from the previous passive to active “defense” of its national interests.

USA 1947: War Department becomes Defense Department

This strategy included ideological artifices: The anti-liberal and anti-democratic intensified capitalism doctrine was called “neoliberalism.”

And the intensified military expansion was passed off as “defense.” From 1789, since its founding, the U.S. factually had a War Department: through wars, the North American continent was integrated into the national territory, then Central America, the Caribbean, Cuba, then the Philippines, Puerto Rico, China, etc. were militarily penetrated, temporarily occupied, vassal governments were installed, islands – or parts of islands like Guantanamo in Cuba – were occupied and developed as permanent military bases.

But just at the highest stage of its also military expansion up to then, the War Department was euphemistically and factlessly renamed to Defense Department in 1947. That is why the aggressive NATO was called the “defense” alliance.

The Twin: Marshall Plan and NATO

NATO, founded in 1949, was the twin of the Marshall Plan. The dual military-civilian character was embodied by George Marshall himself: During World War 2, as Chief of Staff, he coordinated the U.S. military in all theaters of war between North Africa, Europe and Asia. After the war, as Secretary of State from 1947 to 1949, he organized the Marshall Plan. And in 1950, the agile man slipped into the role of U.S. secretary of defense, organizing brutal interventions, including napalm bombings, against liberation movements around the globe, in Korea as well as in Greece.

From 1947 on, all later founding members of NATO received aid from the Marshall Plan: Great Britain, France, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Denmark, Iceland, Italy, Norway. This continued after NATO’s founding until the end of the Marshall Plan in 1952. In addition, in 1949, the U.S. Congress approved $1 billion in aid for the rearmament of NATO’s founding nations. In some cases, Marshall Plan aid was reallocated for military purposes.

All of these states – except Luxembourg, Italy and Norway – were also active colonial powers. Most of them were also monarchies and no paragon of democracy. The U.S. itself maintained numerous dependent territories around the globe in a neocolonial manner and dominated states in Central America and the Caribbean with the help of dictators – most famously in Cuba.

Preliminary Brussels Pact: Germans and “Communist Danger

Prior to NATO’s founding, the most reliable European countries slated to be founding members were allowed to make their prelude. In March 1948, the governments of Great Britain, France and the three small Benelux monarchies, highly subsidized by the Marshall Plan, adopted the “Brussels Pact.” It saw itself as a military alliance against renewed German aggression and against a threat of Soviet aggression.

These U.S.-led conspiracy practitioners simulated dangers that did not exist: Germany was fully disarmed and under military control of the Allies, including the Brussels Pact members themselves – France, Britain, Belgium, and the Netherlands were occupying powers in West Germany; and they could have a say in whether or not West Germany or the Federal Republic of Germany was rearmed. The Soviet Union was neither capable of nor willing to attack Western Europe, and even less willing to permanently occupy it – this assessment of the U.S. government was also familiar to the Brussels Pact states.

The Brussels Pact brought together, along with Great Britain, the states whose governments and economic elites had not resisted the occupation of the Wehrmacht, but had collaborated with Nazi Germany and also saw “communism” as the main danger. They all feared punishment, disentanglement or even expropriation after the war, the military and secret services feared loss of influence. But the U.S. held a protective hand over them.

On April 4, 1949 – a few months before the founding of the Federal Republic of Germany – the military alliance North Atlantic Treaty Organization, NATO, was founded in Washington. It was billed as a “defense” alliance, following U.S. language. All other members were dependent on the U.S., not only through the Marshall Plan, but also through additional loans, military aid and investments. NATO’s headquarters were in Washington until 1952.

Also there: Dictator Franco with special status

The ruling circles of the USA had admired Mussolini’s fascism: He had shown how to defeat the “communist danger” in the West. Mussolini was showered with loans by Wall Street, and U.S. investors bought shares in Italian companies, such as Fiat. With Mussolini and Hitler, U.S. corporations supplied the fascist Franco, who destroyed the Republic in a brutal civil war.

Franco had declared victory on April 1, 1939 – just two weeks later, the Roosevelt administration had appointed its ambassador in Madrid. Only Mussolini, Hitler, Pope Pius XII and the British fascist promoters King George VI with Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain had been quicker to diplomatically recognize the dictatorship.

For cosmetic reasons, Spain initially did not become a NATO member while Franco ruled. But the United States included Spain in its European expansion even without formal membership. They operated military bases here and promoted economic development, such as tourism. Fascism was compatible with “freedom and democracy” and NATO.

War against liberation movements in European colonies

With NATO, with additional U.S. military bases in NATO member states and additional partnerships such as with Spain, the U.S. not only pushed its “defense” line into Western Europe in Lippmann’s sense. It also supported the wars waged by the European colonial powers against the liberation movements in the colonies that had gained strength after the war. And in the process, the U.S. also gained access to raw materials in those colonies.

Great Britain

Britain had been supplied by the U.S. with armaments, ships and food during the war and was now heavily indebted to the U.S. The U.S. saw to it that the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which it had founded and controlled in 1944, made its first major loan to Britain in 1947: this was used to conciliate and blackmail the Labour government.

Britain was also weakened in other respects: its most important colonies, such as India, were lost. Already during the war, Great Britain had ceded several military bases in the Commonwealth to the USA (land lease program). At the time of NATO’s founding, the Labour-led government fought the liberation movement in Ghana, calling the leader of the Convention People’s Party, Kwane Nkrumah, a “little local Hitler” and putting him in prison in 1950. Only in 1957 was Ghana able to become independent with Nkrumah.

The U.S., which had already been present in Greece and Turkey from 1943 with its secret service OSS, replaced Britain’s military and secret service there in 1948 and took over the war against the anti-fascist liberation movement in Greece.

Canada

Canada, as a member of the Commonwealth, was doubly dependent: Since the late 19th century, the country had been an economic colony of the United States. Canadian troops and their intelligence service had been under British command, and British troops and the entire British war economy had been subordinate to the United States.

France

The second most important NATO member after Britain was France. The U.S. Army, along with the British and Canadians, had liberated the country from the Nazis and the Vichy collaborationist government under Marshal Pétain in 1944. The leftist Resistance, which had been infiltrated by the U.S. intelligence agency OSS, was gradually eliminated.

The unpopular General Charles de Gaulle, who had fought against Hitler and represented an independent France, had to be allowed to walk in the victory parade on the Champs Elysées in Paris, and then a provisional government was formed by him; it included the Communist Party, which had led the Resistance. But this government was never recognized by the United States. The World Bank, under President John McCloy, granted a loan to France even before the Marshall Plan, on the condition: De Gaulle and the Communists must be out of the government! U.S. Secretary of State Byrnes, Marshall’s predecessor, promised a 650 million loan and the additional delivery of 500,000 tons of coal.

Christian lacquered politicians like George Bidault, close friend of CDU chairman and future West German chancellor Konrad Adenauer and like the latter in contact with CIA chief Allen Dulles, were maneuvered into the government. De Gaulle was thrown out. The loan was granted. In 1948, the U.S. also rearmed three French divisions so that France could even act as a serious occupying power in its occupied territory in West Germany.

Algeria was not only a French colony, but was considered part of France, albeit with a racist apartheid system. This did not bother NATO at all: Algeria was immediately included in the NATO treaty area. The French government’s brutal colonial war intensified. By independence, the French military had killed hundreds of thousands of independence fighters and civilians.

At the same time, the French government demanded military aid against “communism” in the colony of Indochina: the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, proclaimed in September 1945 by the Viet Minh independence movement under Ho Chi Minh, was to be destroyed – the U.S. helped France with military advisors, food and armaments. McCloy, as president of the World Bank, also approved a loan for this purpose in 1949, the year NATO was founded.

Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg

The three Benelux countries had made no military contribution against Hitler’s Germany. Their governments and corporations had collaborated with the Nazis in the war. But Belgium and the Netherlands became NATO members and were allowed to enter West Germany as occupying forces by U.S. grace.

McCloy also conceded a World Bank loan to the Kingdom of the Netherlands in 1949, NATO’s founding year, so that the independence movement in the colony of Indonesia could be fought. Against the Republic of Indonesia, established in 1945 after the Japanese occupation, the 145,000 Dutch military forces proceeded to bomb cities, murder tens of thousands of resistance fighters and other locals, and capture the government.

Belgium

The Kingdom of Belgium continued to hold its resource-rich colony of Congo under the gun after 1945 with U.S. approval. The U.S. had obtained uranium, crucial for its atomic bombs, from the Belgian colony. The mining company Union Minière du Haut Katanga – in which the Rockefellers had a stake – had already moved its headquarters from Brussels to New York in 1939.

After 1945, anti-colonial resistance in the Congo was fought mercilessly: trade unions were banned, strikers were shot or publicly flogged. Later, in 1961, in Belgian-U.S. complicity (King Baudouin, U.S. President Eisenhower, CIA, native collaborators), the first prime minister of the newly independent Congo, Patrice Lumumba, was bestially murdered after a short time.

Portugal

Fascist Portugal had remained neutral in the war and therefore had been all the more important economically to Nazi Germany: As the most important state, Portugal supplied tungsten, a precious metal crucial to the war, for steel hardening, necessary, for example, for rifle barrels and cannon barrels. In Portugal, pirated shares and pirated gold were laundered to finance the German war effort.

After 1945, the USA returned the Asian colonies of Timor and Macau, which had been occupied by Japan, to Portugal. In the African colonies of Mozambique and Angola, colonialist forced and plantation economies (coffee, cotton) prevailed. The Communist Party, the main liberation organization, was banned and persecuted.

And the U.S. and NATO could now use Portugal’s Atlantic islands, the Azores, as military bases.

Small states and later NATO members

Iceland, a Danish colony, had been occupied by Britain and the United States in 1940. The country had declared independence to Denmark in 1944. Therefore, Iceland received Marshall Plan funds and agreed to its NATO membership. The small country maintained no military of its own, but served as a U.S. and NATO base.

Denmark: An anti-fascist government was formed here after the Nazi era. It included the Communist Party, which had resisted the Nazis. Here, too, the U.S., with the help of social democracy and the Marshall Plan, drove out the non-alignment originally intended.

In the Danish colony of Greenland, the USA had already established military bases in 1941. The Danish government, which had reserved foreign and security policy rule over Greenland, agreed: Greenland was declared a NATO defense area in 1951. The U.S. military base at Thule in Greenland was developed into one of the largest foreign U.S. bases as a forward espionage site against the Soviet Union and then against Russia, determining Danish foreign policy.

Norway: Here, the Social Democratic government wanted to remain non-aligned after the German occupation. But with the help of the Marshall Plan and additional rearmament aid, the U.S. maneuvered Norway into NATO.

Greece: In NATO’s founding year, U.S. dive-bombers napalmed the positions of the already victorious anti-fascist liberation movement in Greece and equipped the military loyal to the monarchy, which had collaborated with the Nazis. This was the only way to defeat the liberation movement. When the U.S. had ensured a U.S.-dependent government here as in neighboring Turkey, it brought the two countries into NATO in 1952.

Federal Republic of Germany: Largest U.S. Fortress in Europe

The U.S. wanted above all to bring the western occupied zones of Germany into NATO. But first, this West Germany was not yet a state; and second, the governments of France and Great Britain initially opposed rearming the Germans because of critical public opinion in both states.

But shortly after the founding of the new state of the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), its Christian-painted chancellor Konrad Adenauer in 1950 agreed (secretly) to rearm. He had the peace and neutrality movements fought and incited as “communist”. The USA promoted arms production in the FRG for the needs of the war against the People’s Liberation Movement in Korea as early as 1950. The West German arms industrialists lobbied for NATO. And as early as September 1950, NATO included the FRG in the NATO defense area – five years before formally joining NATO.

Today in the 21st century, no other state on the planet hosts as many additional U.S. military bases – about 30 – as NATO member West Germany.

The USA invades the European colonies

NATO was thus an alliance against post-fascist and anti-fascist democratization in Europe and against national self-determination in the colonies. And the neo-colonial NATO leading state U.S. invaded the old colonies of the Europeans.

In the French colonies of Indochina (Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia) and Africa (a good dozen colonies, mainly of France, then also of Belgium and Portugal) important raw materials were stored. U.S. companies wanted to get their hands on them as cheaply as possible. Under Evan Just, the Marshall Plan authority in Paris maintained the “Strategic Raw Materials” department. It explored and inventoried in the colonies of the European colonial powers, for example, manganese and graphite in Madagascar; lead, cobalt and manganese in Morocco; cobalt, uranium and cadmium in the Congo; tin in Cameroon; chrome and nickel in New Caledonia; rubber in Indochina; oil in Indonesia; besides industrial diamonds, asbestos, beryllium, tantalite and colombit.

The Marshall Plan Authority and the State Department organized commodity purchase contracts beginning in 1948, for example, in favor of the U.S. corporations United Steel, Bethlehem Steel, and Newmont Mining. Investment banks such as Morgan Stanley and Lazard Frères formed joint holding companies to modernize mines in the colonies. For the atomic bombs, the U.S. needed even more uranium after the war than during the war anyway.

Finally, finally conquer Russia? Resistance!

For NATO, the founding was not about defeating “communism”, that was only a preliminary stage. It was and is about the U.S.-led conquest and exploitation of Europe, especially Russia, that is, all of Eurasia from Lisbon to Vladivostok (according to U.S. presidential adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski in 1996) and regardless of whether it is communist or capitalist.

NATO has been and continues to be an alliance that has principally and permanently violated the UN Charter, Article 1 “Self-Determination of Nations,” from its inception. NATO members – and also associate members such as Switzerland and Austria – joined in various ways in the numerous U.S.-led wars of the wrongly so-called “Cold War,” beginning with the Korean War and most recently, for example, for two decades in Afghanistan, leaving behind impoverished, devastated countries, with high profits for the arms, energy, supply and private military services industries.

And even under the otherwise somewhat criticized President Donald Trump, NATO’s European partners followed NATO’s leading power in anti-Russian agitation and rearmament to conquer the Eurasian theater, finally, finally succeeding, if need be again with war, and this time with nuclear bombs.

With the eastward enlargement of NATO the founding lie was continued. The EU membership of the ex-socialist states always followed a few years after the NATO membership. The EU continues to be an appendage of NATO. The relative economic support provided by the Marshall Plan brought only relative prosperity – and it was only a temporary concession. That ended in 1990. The EU, together with U.S. corporations, investors and consultants, has been dismantling relative prosperity ever since, step by step, first in Eastern Europe but, at the latest since the 2008 “financial crisis,” ever more rapidly in the “rich” states of Western Europe as well.

The stakes are high. The NATO edifice of lies, nurtured for decades, is more fragile than ever. Resistance to it must and can take on a new strength, on all continents. The legal-political basis are the original UN international law and UN human rights, which include labor and social rights. And that the military harms the environment more than others, even environmentalists can still learn.

Andrei Martyanov: They are terrified when seeing this banner

April 28, 2022

Please visit Andrei’s website: https://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/
and support him here: https://www.patreon.com/bePatron?u=60459185

The health of the sick, Europe’s hot summer and even colder winter

23 Apr 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

Piermaria Costa 

There is a small break in the clouds of the western end of Eurasia with discerning eyes gazing east, eager to revive civilized dialogue along the routes where globalization started.

The Health of the Sick, Europe’s Hot Summer and even Colder Winter

“It’s West Europeans that want to distinguish themselves from us, they don’t have a monopoly on “Europeanness”… We are even more European than they are.”

-Former Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev

Growing up in the 90s in Italy, we were taught from the 5th grade on about WWII. The Holocaust, Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, the valiant partisans, and of course “the liberation”. Photographic and moving images from the archives are constantly played, repeated every year, perhaps dangerously, to the point of banality. The moral of course was that this was the war against wars and therefore the last. A strong “West” united against barbarity would make sure that history would not repeat itself; the raison d’être of the modern European project.

Today, images of civilians executed by Nazis for accepting provisions from the Russian military, and blatant war crimes against prisoners of war are promptly labeled as “Russian disinformation”.  Nothing discovered on the ground in Ukraine could be as dark as what the West could manufacture from their media rooms armed with “satellite images” demonstrating Russia’s innate appetite for expansion and violence. 

All great reasons to attempt to destabilize Russia through sanctions. The second-rate European ruling classes obediently dragged their economy, kicking and screaming, toward “The End of History”. In total denial of the disintegration of the Atlantic hegemon, while ignoring the integration unfolding on the very continent on which they live, Eurasia.

It is possible that the fatal concoction of hyper-globalization, digital reality, woke cancel culture and biomedical security has caused unprecedented amnesia of modern history on the Western masses. The crucial eight decades after World War II and its resulting rules-based world order relegated to the darkest annals of memory.

The second of May 1945, as such, is a conveniently neglected historic fact. It is the day Berlin fell to the Red Army, finishing Nazi Germany. More than one month before the arrival of American and British forces. Equally important is that every move after the Potsdam Berlin conference in 1945 by the Western winners of the war was targeted specifically at isolating the USSR, trashing previous agreements.

Shortly after, in February 1946, on the propaganda front George Keenan’s “Long Telegram”- hit piece on the Slavic soul, cold and incapable of modernizing with Western civilizations – was instrumental in creating the rhetoric to “other” Russia, and facilitated the creation of consent around what would become the Western bloc’s “containment” strategy toward the Soviet Union.

If one simply examines the dates of key events such as: 

1. The Deutsch Mark reform on 17th June 1948 and the Blockade of West Berlin on 24th June 1948; 

2. Proclamation of the Federal Republic of Germany on 23 May 1949 and the proclamation of the German Democratic Republic 7th October 1949;

3. Proposal for a free, demilitarised West Berlin refused on 27th November 1958, and the Berlin Wall construction beginning on 13th August 1961.

The West made every move first, for which there was a Soviet response, not the other way around. Ignoring the Yalta agreements that occupied Germany would be controlled under mutual agreement under unified command of the three winning powers, and Potsdam conference article 14: “during the occupation period Germany will be treated as a single economic entity.”

But still, in the years connecting the Potsdam Berlin conference and the construction of the Berlin Wall, Moscow continued to ask for negotiations, proposing several maneuvers that could end in a peace treaty for all Germany. It was reported that crickets could be heard on the western front. 

The German reparations promised to Europe (including of course to the USSR) under the auspices of Yalta and Potsdam would be replaced with the American credit scheme Marshall Plan, keeping the USA war-time economic boom moving, through the reconstruction of battered Europe- its economy now under direct control of the international monetary institutions created at Bretton Woods in 1944; namely, the IMF and World Bank. The Marshall Plan (which was offered to USSR, but was quickly rejected) through its various industrial and economic re-incarnations, such as the ECSC (European Coal and Steel Community), and the ACUE (American Committee for the united Europa) evolved into the European Union. 

No wonder Russians have always seen Europe as a total colony. They shouldered the reconstruction of their territory, sacrificing abundance for independence while watching NATO/American bases swallow Europe from their front yard. 

So what is the trouble with Europe today? The European project in reality is very transparent, with a hierarchy designed specifically to have a single center of power within Europe securing the hegemonic interests of its master abroad, while still living in the intoxicating fumes of the fantasy surrounding the Berlin Wall.

Coming out of the 1929 market crash, the United States revitalized its economy weaponizing the allied war effort in the old continent. The cost of their help was 120 NATO/USA bases and 40 American nuclear bombs in Italy alone, the homogenization of “European identity”, and the territory’s transformation into America’s missile launching pad and buffer zone. 

Turning its back on institutionalized Nazism in Ukraine for America’s imperialistic goals, West Europe is becoming the moral sick-man of the world. While quickly descending into economic and cultural chaos it is irreparably losing the trust of the neighbors that count. If “European values” mean only speaking and never listening as in the past 500 years, then one can only hope that if anything at all is left of Homer and Cicero that they will be preserved in that land lost in the translation of Dostoyevsky and Gagarin. 

There is a small break in the clouds of the Western end of Eurasia with discerning eyes gazing east, eager to revive civilized dialogue along the routes where globalization started. 

But first, a remedy is required, only time will tell the prescription.

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

Day 50 of the SMO – are things becoming clear(er)?

April 15, 2022

Source

So now we are 50 days into this Special Military Operation (SMO) and right in between the end of the first phase and the beginning of the second one.  So I want to begin by list a few things which were unclear/ambiguous/misunderstood and which now are becoming clear(er):

  • There is this saying “no plan survives the first contact with the enemy” which I would even expand to “no plan survives the first contact with reality”.  Why?  The first one is obvious, the enemy will try to foil your plans, but the second one is less known: in war there is always a large element of chaos simply because your entire country and your military are in one mode up until the initiation of combat operations and because they have to very quickly switch over a completely new reality.  The point is therefore not to stick to plan A at any cost, but neither is it to ditch it all and reinvent the wheel.  What is needed is a quick response time to identify the problems and fix them.  I would say that with this in mind, the Russian military did a very good job by quickly transforming a integrated Ukrainian military capable of strategic operations into a broken up entity with its various parts isolated and unable to support each other.  What is my evidence for that?  There has not been a single Ukrainian counter-attack higher than on a subunit (battalion, company) level.  Considering that the Ukrainians have the double advantage of being on the defense and having a larger force, this is truly a remarkable achievement.  Add to this the money, weapons and intelligence support from the US/NATO and it is nothing short of a triumph.
  • The clueless RT still has this on its webpage even though the Moskva sank 24 hours ago!At the same time, Russia as a whole, and especially the military, did an absolutely awful job talking to the public, both in Russia and in the West.  See a typical example of the image on the right.  The only mistake the US PYSOPs made was that they really “overdid it”, which profoundly angered and alienated the Russian public which went from “what is going on?” to “we are in a fight for our very survival” very quickly and most Russians are now in what I would refer to a “WWII” mode: total warfare until total victory.  In the West, however, the US PSYOPs truly triumphed and totally defeated the Russian counter-propaganda efforts which, the truth be told, were primitive, clumsy, slow and even self-defeating at times.  Does that matter?  Yes, very.  Why?
  • Because most people in Zone A sincerely and truly believe that “Russia is losing the war”.  Now these are the same folks who until February of 2021 were all virologists/epidemiologists/microbiologists/etc. and who in a remarkable feat, became overnight military experts and now are sincerely advising the Russians on how to wage a war.  The fact that no “real” war has even begun does not elicit any second thoughts or doubts in these “experts in everything” folks who simply don’t believe that some matters require years of training to achieve the expertise needed to understand even the basics.  And no, as Andrei Martyanov always points out, a BA in communications or a law degree do not make you into a military expert overnight (by the way, I notice a very large “overlap” between the COVID death cult members and the armchair generals).
  • Objectively, there is also a double language and culture barrier at work here.  Very few folks in Zone A are fluent, or even conversant, in Russian and even fewer understand the Russian mindset.  So if all the English speaking media (including putatively pro-Russian ones – more about those later) says someting it makes no sense to expect most English speakers to find the correct Russian language Telegram channels to get the other side of the information.  As for RT and Sputnik, in their naive and clumsy efforts to appear “objective” they just reinforce the western propaganda narratives.
  • Then there is an interesting phenomenon which became very apparent over the past 50 days: there are quite a few websites and blogs who PRETEND to be pro-Russian but, in reality, that support is conditional on Russia supporting their agenda and if Russians do things differently those putatively pro-Russian outlets quickly take up the exact same talking points as the US PSYOPs.  There are also a number of PRETEND “liberal” or “Leftist” or “Anti-Imperialist” websites which were ALWAYS CIA-operated but which, over the years, acquired some (totally undeserved) credibility and which have now suddenly “flipped”.  Pro-Nazi “liberals”, got to love that…

The result of all this?  FUD: fear, uncertainty and doubts of course.

Even worse are the implications of this FUD on many levels:

  • It gives the folks in the West a sense of impunity and it almost totally conceals the magnitude of the dangers the Empire of Hate and Lies is facing today: from real food shortages, to an economic collapse, and even to a continental war in Europe.  After all, if the Russians are losing, then “we” must be winning, so all is well.  Not very bright, but oh so human…
  • It angers and frustrates the Russian soldiers actually doing the fighting who are living in fear not a a heroic Ukrainian counter-offensive, but what the Russian government (at all levels and in all branches) will screw up next.  Want an example?  Sure!  How about this: until senior LDNR official began to openly complain the Russian customs the latter did not allow non-governmental humanitarian convoys to cross into the Ukraine.  This was was solved, now the next one is this: how to organize pensions for the families of Russian volunteers who fight in the Ukraine?
  • It greatly encourages the Ukrainians to fight this war down to the last Ukrainian and a total destruction of the Ukrainian civil infrastructure.  Yes, the united West wants to genocide Russians by means of genociding Ukrainians.  It cannot get any more openly satanic than that!

Having said all of the above, we now need to step back and only make some very basic predictions:

  • What began as the “special military operation” is now turning into a total war of the united West against Russia and that means that the goal for the West is not peace, its victory and a Russian defeat.  My personal conclusion is that the West will only stop doubling down of the US homeland itself is threatened by Russian conventional and nuclear strategic deterrence capabilities.
  • The Russians are slowly but surely coming to the realization that in spite of all the concessions and retreats made by Russia since 2013 the Empire of Hate and Lies will not stop by itself, it will have to be stopped, by Russia.  Again.  As the VDV motto says “nobody but us”.
  • The Ukrainians have no agency, and neither do the Eurolemmings.  In fact, the USA is using both the Ukronazis and their EU serfs as cannon fodder because their calculation is that if Russia wins, then the Eurolemmings will become not only become terrified and even more subservient, but also that the EU will burn itself down removing a competitor.  I remind you that the USA’s wealth is based on how much the USA profited from both WWI and WWII.  So why not with WWIII as long as it remains within the confines of the European theater of operations?  And that will be doubly true if Russia loses.

My first conclusion here is that a direct military conflict involving NATO and Russia is now likely.

That, by itself, is simply horrible, but here is the simple truth: if the Anglos, yet again, want to burn down the European continent there might not be anything Russia could do to prevent that.  And forget about the suicidal Eurolemmings.  Russia can win that war, and she will, but yet again at a huge cost.

And that is exactly what the Anglos want.

So is there a silver lining here or is it all doom and gloom?

In fact, there is: the reactions of the Russian public to the rather ambiguous and sometimes outright weird stuff members of the Russian government, at different levels, have been doing and saying.  Like that terrible Medinski presser which totally freaked out most Russians.  Or the rumor that Abramovich (!) is negotiating between Moscow and Kiev.  Oh I know, that is just another rumor, but considering the DISMAL job of Russian information operations that rumor, and hundreds more, are making the public weary and angry.

And the general public itself, rather than any government officials, started to react to this kind of dangerous FUD by something we could think of as a grassroots counter-propaganda campaign.  For example, while the letters Z and V have been banned in the Ukraine (and in Latvia, Moldova, Greece and even in some German states) they are literally all over the Runet and you could say that Z and V have now become part of the Russian alphabet and that they are now often used to replace the traditional Cyrillic Z (З) and V (В).

And now Slovakia is declaring that the Nazis in Kiev are “fighting for the future of Europe“.

Basically, the EU politicians have now de facto rehabilitated the Third Reich.  At least now it is official.

Heck, since that war began, even Uber-Atlantic-Integrationist Medvedev has turned into a patriotic hardliner!

So maybe it will be the “Russian street” which will teach the so-called “specialists” how informational warfare is done?  I sure hope so!

The other major power from Zone B, China, immediately understood what this was all about: “West’s ban of ‘Z’ symbol a manifestation of its Russophobia“.

Yup, the letter Z is now serving a somewhat similar function to the Star of David in Nazi Germany.

Then there are the many iterations of the following slogans “our cause is just“, “the enemy will be defeated” and “we will go to the end!” which are also all over the Runet.  Note that all of these slogans are strongly associated with WWII in the Russian mind.

And then there is this: the, shall we call them “poor communication skills”, of the Kremlin have resulted in a real shitstorm of angry protests and freakouts so the Kremlin had to tone it down by a lot.  Yes, Putin PERSONALLY is very popular and trusted (over 80%), but not the government or, even less so, mid-level or local government officials.  It would not take much (another major SNAFU for example) to trigger angry protests.

But if anybody is to be truly credited with reassuring the Russian public that no “negotiators” will backstab the Russian military should go to the “Biden” Administration which “convinced” Zelenski to stop any and all negotiations and to restate the Ukronazis most extreme demands (including the LDNR and Crimea).  Now that truly made negotiations not only pointless, but pretty much impossible.

Thank you “Biden”!

I also want to use this opportunity publicly express my deepest gratitude to Josip Borrell, the Eurolemming’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, for declaring “this war must be won on the battlefield“!  When EU *diplomats* use that kind of language, it has a quasi-miraculous effect on the wannabe “peace camp” in Russia.  Even RT (!) seems to have smelled the coffee and now we can find an article entitled “It appears that the West doesn’t want peace in Ukraine“.  No kidding, geniuses!

As I have mentioned it in the past, I am personally very much in favor of negotiations and even talking to the enemy during a war, but that should be done very discreetly, very carefully and with the clear “message”  to the general public if these negotiations, or leaks about them, are made public.  If you cannot negotiate without freaking out your own people, then don’t try, you will do more for peace by shutting up and staying at home.  If instead of using the insect-like Medinski (he reminds of Blinken, same “I am a loser” look) Putin had sent Ramzan Kadyrov the perception about “negotiations” in Russia would probably be very different today.

So what is up next?

  • A major battle around the Donbass cauldron
  • NATO convoys moving into the Ukraine
  • The collapse of the “the Russians are losing” narrative replaced by
  • A Russian “atrocity” of some type
  • The western media will begin to “discover sins” amongst those they lionized until now (see image)
  • The full dimension of the economic crisis resulting from the collapse of the international economic system will become much more apparent, especially in the EU.

What about the Black Sea Fleet – can it operate without its flagship?

As I mentioned yesterday, I am not a navy person and neither do I know what plans the Russian General Staff had for the BSF.  But I can say this: Slava-class guided missile cruisers were designed in the 70s as aircraft carrier destroyers.  For this purpose they were equipped with very powerful missiles, superb (by 1970s standards!) S-300F,  OSA-MA SAMs, 6 AK-630 point air defenses and a lot of (old) electronics.  Since there are not aircraft carriers in the Black Sea, I suppose that the Moskva main role was as a command ship (its main canons don’t provide the range needed to support amphibious assault operations) and also as a relatively powerful mobile, floating, radar.  The Moskva was hit by something about 50km south of Snake Island which means that she was also probably watching the movement of ships near/from Romania.  Frankly, that is not a task for a guided missile cruiser.

[Sidebar: as to what actually caused the explosion, my personal best guess is a Ukrainian mine detached by the recent storm and drifting southwards which the Russians failed to detect.  That would explain the hull breach which later resulted in the Moskva taking in water and sinking while in tow.  I still don’t buy the “Ukrainian 2 “Neptunes” version at all, if only because the Moskva had very solid air defenses while bad weather makes minesweeping very hard.  But we will probably never find out for sure, unless the members of the crew reveal what really happened]

Considering that the Ukraine has NO navy at all, I don’t see how the loss of the Moskva would hamper or significantly complicate any BSF operations (navy folks, please correct me here if I missed something!).

The Moskva also had an important role in the eastern Mediterranean (Syria) and yes, there is probably where she will be missed the most.  I hope that this loss will provide the impetus to massively accelerate the modernization of old Russian (well, Soviet, really) ships and the construction of new ones.

I would even be inclined to think that the deployment of hypersonic ASM has not only made aircraft carriers obsolete (at least against Russia) but, by the same logic, has made old Russian/Soviet “carrier hunter killers” obsolete by implication.  Nowadays, even SMALL missile boats can fire Russian hypersonic missiles thousands of kilometers away, so why bother with really big ships in anti-carrier operations?  Range?  Okay.  Firepower?  Okay.  Bigger and better sensors?  Okay.  But not in the Black Sea.  And not with a minimally modernized 1970 era ship.

Conclusion:

There is no doubt that Russia fought superbly during the SMO and there is no doubt either that the Russian probably calcualted that “just” a SMO would be sufficient to achieve the Russian goals (immediate: protect the LDNR, intermediate: denazify and disarm the Ukraine and long term: change the European and world collective security arrangements) was wrong.  It is now becoming almost certain that a real, much larger, war to crush the Ukrainian military will be needed, and it will have to be fought with much larger forces and means. 

The Empire of Hate and Lies has decided to “go max” and is acting exactly as it would be in preparations for a much larger war in Europe.  For example, with the steady stream of mass expulsions of Russian diplomats there is a very real possibility that Russia and the US/NATO/EU will sever their diplomatic relationships, something traditionally considered as the last step before a declaration of war.

One of the best things the Kremlin could do now is to carefully study how the Iranians since 1979 (!) managed to successfully:

  • Never be drawn into a war they did not want (except the one launched by the West and the USSR following the Islamic Revolution which Iran won, by the way)
  • Deter the Anglo-Zionist from direct attacks on Iran
  • Survive both sanctions and even a blockade
  • Defeat US PSYOPs (remember Neda Agha-Soltan?)
  • Actively assist in the liberation of other countries around the world and, especially, the Middle-East
  • Superbly combine political pragmatism with deep religious piety and idealism
  • Preserve their economy (albeit with major difficulties, but not collapse!)
  • Preserve their Islamic societal and civilizational model
  • Remain truly sovereign
  • Maintain a rock solid morale throughout it all

If Iran could do that, why can’t we?  I have an answer for this question, but I won’t offer it until the end of combat operations.

As I have also mentioned many times, Russia is a project, a ‘moving target’, a society which is recovering from at least 300 years of foreign domination (especially spiritual and political) and a society which is STILL changing, very fast in many aspects.

Yes, Russia has a superb military and immense resources.  But that is not enough.

Some say that the next “New Russia” was “born in the LDNR”, and I hope that they are right, not in the sense that Russia needs to copy all the decisions (often bad ones too!) of the LDNR, but Russia does need to purge herself from those in positions of power who are just stuck in the past or unable to adapt to new realities.

Can Russia denazify the planet?  By herself, no.  At most she can militarily destroy all of Zone A, but only in a mutual suicide act of desperation (the US nuclear triad is still mostly functional, in spite of its problems).  But can Russia and the rest of Zone B denazify the planet?  Absolutely.  Even “just” Russia and China together are more powerful than the rest of the planet combined, add India to this and you have a truly unstoppable force.

The Empire is already dead, but like a stinking unburied corpse, it still have enough “toxicity momentum” to continue to threaten the planet until the USA is both denazified and disarmed.  That will take a lot of time, even with the recent massive acceleration of the pace of events.

So no quick fix, no quick solution, no quick victory (or defeat for that matter).  This is not want Russia wanted, but that is what she got.

May she make the most of it to transform herself into the civilizational realm she was for centuries.  That could be the biggest homage to those fighting for the future of Russia today.

Andrei

PS: I want to remind you all one more time that if the USA and Russia openly and directly clash militarily, I will immediately “freeze” the blog until the situation is resolved in one way or another.  I am a guest, a legal alien (“Green Card”), in the USA and it is not my role to speak if my country of current residence and my country of ethnic origin are at war with each other.

Talking Reality Theories, With Airika Dollner, the Amazing Creative Mind of Art With Aim

 

Eva Bartlett

Some months ago, while chatting about world events, media lies, and how people who dare to think critically are often dismissed as “conspiracy theorists”, we joked about being “reality theorists”, and I liked the sound of that term. Our plans to have a conversation got delayed, but finally came about the other morning.

In our first conversation, Airika and I discussed a variety of things, from Palestine to Syria to Ukraine and more. Airika is a phenomenal researcher & very expressive, articulate, woman. We’ll be having these conversations a lot more frequently, on a wide range of issues, particularly things she has researched deeply.

What is ‘The Russian World’?

April 14, 2022

Source

By Batiushka

Whenever empires crash, the question arises as to what can be saved from them. Thus, after the Second World War, all Western European colonial empires crashed. For example, the French Empire crashed, notably in Indo-China, which led among other things to the US invasion of Vietnam and to the no less tragic Franco-Algerian War, but also left a mass of African ‘independent’ dependencies and leaders, to be toppled by the French military and assassinated by French spies. At the same time, the bankrupted British Empire crashed, leaving Israel in charge of Palestine, the bloody tragedy of Indian Partition, the ‘Commonwealth’ and more significantly the White Commonwealth, now called the Anglosphere, but under US control. This is what The Saker rightly calls ‘The Anglo-Zionist Empire’.

In 1991, the Soviet Empire crashed, leaving chaos in Eurasia, which the Western-inspired sticking plaster of the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) did nothing to remedy. Unlike Western European colonial empires, the vacuum left by the USSR covered one contiguous landmass. Moreover, the space vacated had history, going back hundreds of years to the Russian Empire, fallen in the British-organised palace coup of 1917. As nature abhors a vacuum, it was clear that such a vacuum and its chaos could not prevail for long. After the alcohol-hazed and gangster-crazed years of the Harvard-puppeteered Yeltsin and the ensuing genocide and suicide of millions in the old Soviet Union, in the 2000s, sense, order and hope slowly began to re-emerge.

It arrived in the quite ancient concept of ‘The Russian World’ (‘Russky Mir’), which was first officially used in its modern sense in 2007, when President Putin decreed the establishment of the government-sponsored ‘Russky Mir Foundation’. From here on, this term became more and more common and is notably widely used by the multinational Russian Orthodox Church. However, what does this term actually mean?

For some, the term ‘The Russian World’ means wherever Russians live. If it means only that, then this is a purely nationalistic project. It would mean that the remaining elitist oligarchs inside Russia, the Euro-Atlanticists, who as fifth columnists co-operate with CIA agents inside and outside Russia, belong to ‘The Russian World’. It would mean that the corrupt and treacherous aristocrats/oligarchs who after 1917 moved mainly to Paris and since 1991 have moved mainly to London, Tel Aviv and New York, also belong to ‘The Russian World’. Do they?

For some, the term ‘The Russian World’ means the Russian-speaking world. If it means only that, then this is a purely linguistic project. And yet there are many all over the world, from China to Venezuela, from New Zealand to Scotland, who strongly identify with Russia and her aims, but who do not speak any Russian. Are they then excluded?

For some, the term ‘The Russian World’ means wherever Orthodox Christians live. If it means only that, then this is a purely denominational project. Given some 500 fringe intellectuals and pseudo-intellectuals, who formally belong to the Orthodox Church and who compiled a Declaration on the ‘Russian World’ Teaching on 13 March 2022, calling it an “ideology”, “a heresy” and “a form of religious fundamentalism” that is “totalitarian in character.” So do they belong to ‘The Russian World’?

For us, ‘The Russian World’ means something else, far broader. It means wherever live those who are opposed to the exploitative and manipulative Western/Anglo-Zionist/Nazi/NATO/Globalist/Capitalist ideology and project. Although we mainly live in Russia, China, India, Africa, Latin America, the Muslim World, Indonesia and Kazakhstan, we exist all over the world, even within the conquered heartlands of the Evil Empire, in the USA, Canada, the UK, Israel, the EU, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand. We are those who resist the carefully-orchestrated campaign of slander of the elite, which arrogantly calls itself ‘the international community’. For those who live in the virtual world and who fly the made-up Lower Austrian flag of the made-up Ukraine, of whose history and geography they know nothing, the lies of that elite seem real. For us who live in the real world, the Russian world, they are both absurd and evil.

Since 24 February 2022, when the peoples of the Russian Federation, Belarus and the Donbass were forced to defend themselves from NATO aggression, we have known that the world will never be the same again. The ‘victory’ of the Western world over Western Communism in 1991 has turned out to be a defeat, a self-imposed one. For in its ‘end of history’ hubris the Western world excluded reality. If I can draw a Tolkienesque parallel, we, the true international, that is multipolar, community of the peoples of the Shire, are quite happy together. And therefore we reject the attempts of Unipolar Mordor, with its insatiable need for our capital, labour and resources, to destroy us.

Serbia Sitrep – The common man says NO

April 11, 2022

Source

Kiyoshi Hatanaka

Serbia is a country that, as even its President Alexander Vucic has publicly admitted, supports Russia in the Ukrainian conflict by an overwhelming majority of at least 80 %. That is very likely an underestimate. The people of that small Balkan nation feel intuitively that Russia has acted correctly and that it is their only international friend. They know their history and realize that at each critical juncture over the last two centuries Russia, whether imperial, Soviet, or the Russian Federation of today, is their only reliable ally. In August 1914, as Europe’s Germanic powers were plotting the invasion and demise of Serbia, after falsely accusing it of complicity in the Sarajevo assassination of Austria’s heir to the throne, Archduke Ferdinand, it was Russia alone among the great powers which in the global storm that was brewing unequivocally stood up for Serbia. Czar Nicholas II literally risked the stability of his empire (and as subsequently became clear, also his own and his family’s life) in order to oppose the assault on Serbia, which triggered World War I.

In World War II, Serbs remember the key role played by the Soviet Army in driving out Nazi occupiers after a brutal and murderous four-year occupation. During the troubled nineties of the last century, after the collapse and dismemberment of the Soviet Union Russia was too embroiled in recovering its own sovereignty to be able to do much for the Serbs. But Russia’s unwavering subsequent support for and insistence on the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1244, which marked the conclusion of the Kosovo conflict by defining Kosovo as an integral part of Serbia again made Russia a key guarantor of Serbia’s statehood and independence. Russia’s position on the Kosovo issue has effectively nullified Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence and ensured that Serbia’s claim to the province which was forcibly occupied as a result of NATO aggression in 1999 remains inviolable and valid from the standpoint of international law. The Serbian nation knows that and deeply appreciate it.

If we fast forward to current events, a sharp discrepancy has emerged between the sentiments of the Serbian people and the policies pursued by their government. The Serbian government appears increasingly to be playing a slimy double-faced game, guided primarily by its own political survival rather than concern for the country’s honor or desire to properly represent the overwhelming sentiment of its citizens in international forums.

That game, which is gradually aligning official Serbia with NATO and the Western powers which the Serbian people despise was recently played out in two landmark votes in the United Nations. On March 3, to the utter dismay of the Serbian public, the government voted in favor of a UN resolution proposed by leading Western countries to condemn the “Russian invasion of Ukraine.” Government spokesmen quickly pointed out that notwithstanding the questionable UN vote Serbia still had no intention of imposing sanctions on Russia, but the damage was done. Russia was nevertheless kind enough to exclude Serbia from the list of “unfriendly countries,” which it published soon after that.

Perhaps encouraged by Moscow’s leniency, on April 6 the Serbian government raised the stakes and continued to test Russia’s patience by casting another hostile vote, this time to suspend Russia from the UN Human Rights Council, again in response to the pressure of Western governments.

A member of the Russian UN delegation commented diplomatically on that occasion that he found the vote of “our Serbian friends” difficult to understand.

The Serbian government is taking the country on a dangerous path by giving in to Western pressure and blackmail. The first vote might have been explained away as a fluke, but the second vote against Russia cannot be described otherwise than as a slap in the face. The legitimate question that arises now that we can clearly see a hostile trend toward Russia emerging in the conduct of the Serbian government, is how far will these provocations go and what further acts unfriendly to Russia are bound to follow?

Qualified Serbian analysts are of the opinion that once the new Serbian post-election government is formed, a set of measures against Russia will inevitably be adopted on orders from the collective West. That may very well include joining Western “sanctions,” though it is not clear exactly in what form because trade with Russia on very favourable terms is a one-way street which benefits only Serbia. Russia is not likely to suffer much by being deprived of Serbian plums, apples, and other agricultural products, but the fragile Serbian economy certainly will.

On a more serious level, there is widespread speculation in political circles in Serbia that the government’s Western overseers will demand that Serbia demonstrate its solidarity with Western countries by also plundering Russian property on its territory. A prime target would be NIS, the mixed ownership energy company which ensures that Serbia receives from Russia the gas and oil it needs at an extraordinarily favourable price. Will Serbia shoot itself in the foot by disrupting its energy relationship with Russia, which is so vitally important to its people and its few remaining viable industries? That remains to be seen, but Germany, UK, and other Western countries have already done it to their own detriment, so something along the same lines can be expected also from the politically insecure and heavily blackmailed Serbian regime.

Official Serbia having recently set two important precedents which mark its subservience to the Western bloc and pliancy in the face of Western pressure, what is next? Obviously, the collective West’s “unfinished business” in Kosovo is still at the top of the agenda. For Kosovo’s secession to be recognized under international law, Serbia must give its consent and sign off on it. The government has been moving steadily in that direction for the last eight years, granting the secessionist regime one attribute of sovereignty after another, but so far stopping short of the ultimate step in fear of the popular reaction. It is stymied also by Russia’s thus far inflexible position as a veto-wielding member of the UN Security Council that the only solution it would approve is the one that is within the framework of Resolution 1244, which mandates that Kosovo is part of Serbia. The question can therefore be legitimately put whether the regime is intentionally annoying Russia in the hope that it will be irritated enough to put Serbia on its list of unfriendly countries and drop its insistence on Resolution 1244, which is what effectively prevents the secessionist entity’s legalisation as a sovereign state separate from Serbia? Time will tell, but well-founded suspicions of foul play abound.

The other important issue on the agenda that must soon some up is Serbia’s membership in NATO. It is an issue that perforce will soon have to be put on the table in light of the collective West’s increasingly bellicose attitude toward Russia, which many interpret as deliberately leading in the direction of war. Assuming that war with Russia is being planned, absorbing Serbia into NATO would be a military and political necessity. Not, of course, in the sense that anyone at NATO headquarters seriously expect that Serbian soldiers would willingly shoot at Russians (even the World War II collaborationist regime flatly refused to send a single Serb to the Eastern front and the Germans could do nothing about it), but because, like Hitler when he was preparing Operation Barbarossa, NATO needs to at least neutralize its Balkan flank.

We should be alert therefore to the likelihood that pressure on the Serbian regime to join NATO will gain in momentum and intensity and will not encounter stiff official resistance. An indication of that is that NATO’s chief lobbyist in Belgrade, a woman who shamelessly asserted that depleted uranium remaining after the 1999 bombing was not only harmless but could even have certain health benefits, was recently rewarded for her 5th column activities by being appointed Serbia’s ambassador to Croatia.

It is important to bear in mind, nevertheless, that with the Serbian media being roughly evenly divided, on the one hand, between Western-owned outlets pushing the Empire of Lies version of events in Ukraine, and television and print outlets under the control of the duplicitous regime pushing a slightly watered-down version of the same party line, the Serbian public is largely shut off from reliable information about Ukraine and just about anything else.

In light of that, the spontaneously organized mass demonstrations in Belgrade and other major cities against the government’s March 3 vote condemning the “Russian invasion” are an important milestone. They indicate that the brainwashing process in Serbia at least is far from a resounding success. They are also a repudiation of NATO’s war plans and of the political betrayals of NATO’s local collaborators. Serbian mass protests are a message to the Russian government and the Russian people that Serbia stands with them and that the decisions of the ruling cabal in Belgrade are null and void.

On April 15 there will be another popular gathering in Belgrade, this time to denounce Serbia’s vote to suspend Russia from the UN Human Rights council. Yes, there are now copycat demonstrations in many Western European countries in support of Russia. But it bears pointing out that this time also, as on March 26 1941, when they poured into the streets to denounce their cowardly government’s signing of the Axis pact, the Serbs again are trailblazers in opposition to global tyranny.

Hitler and now the collective West after him correctly categorized Serbs as an incorrigibly troublesome element in the Balkans. May the Serbian people continue to live up to that glorious reputation.

This is the defiant poster that is circulating in Serbian social media these days:

Translation:

After Serbia’s shameful action against Russia in the United Nations, when it voted to expel Russia from the Human Rights Council, I say:

NOT IN MY NAME

That action does not reflect the position of the overwhelming majority of Serbia’s citizens.

«مصدّق» باكستان وتأميم القنبلة «الإسلاميّة»!

الإثنين 11 نيسان 2022

محمد صادق الحسيني

مثلما انبثقت معادلة الحكم في كلّ من تركيا وإيران بشكلها الحداثي من خاصرة الحرب العالمية الأولى، على قاعدة حكم العسكر باعتباره عمود الدولة كما جسّدها كمال أتاتورك في الأولى، ورضا خان في الثانية، فإنّ باكستان الدولة الجديدة الولادة كما نعرفها الآن هي الأخرى انبثقت معادلة الحكم فيها، من خاصرة الحرب العالمية الثانية على قاعدة انّ العسكر هم عمود الخيمة في الدولة، وانْ كان سياق الولادة في باكستان قد نشأ في سياق مختلف، إلا انّ القاسم المشترك بين أنظمة الحكم الحداثوية الشرقية الآنفة الذكر، هو ظهور العسكر بمثابة عمود الخيمة في النظام السياسي، لا يستقيم أمر استقراره إلا به، ولن يتغيّر الا بتغيّره.

وبعيداً عن الدخول في إشكالية استقلال باكستان «الإسلامية» بقيادة مؤسسها محمد علي جناح وهو أمر مقدّر ومحترم في وجدان الرأي العام الباكستاني والإسلامي، إلا انّ ما يهمّنا التوقف عنده هنا هو أمر آخر تماماً…

ألا وهو نشوء نخبة باكستانية «مدنية» متعلمة، واكبت حقبة الاستقلال وحكم العسكر محمّلة بنسبة عالية من مفاهيم التعايش السلمي مع ثقافة الغرب ونوع من الودّ والعطف تجاه نياته المعلنة بخصوص حقّ تقرير المصير للشعوب وما شابه من مقولات سُمّيت باختصار بالديمقراطية…!

عمران خان هو واحد من هذا الجنس الإصلاحي الهادئ واللطيف الذي نشأ في حضن هذه التركيبة.

قبله كان محمد مصدق إيران، الذي صدّق هو الآخر ثقافة الغرب الديمقراطية ووثق بها، وأراد بدافع حب الوطن، التخلص بمحبة ووداد، من هيمنة بريطانيا العظمى ومن سلطة شركة النفط البريطانية وتأميم النفط الإيراني متجرّئاً على حكم الشاه ومعادلة العسكر، مستعيناً بصدق نيات واشنطن «الإصلاحية»، التي سرعان ما كذبت عفويّته السياسية هذه وعاجلته بانقلاب عسكري أعاد تلميذها النجيب الى الحكم أيّ الشاه محمد رضا بهلوي وهيمنة الاستعمار الغربي على كلّ مقدرات إيران بقوة أكبر وقسوة أشدّ.

هذا هو ما حصل بالضبط لعمران خان المثقف الإصلاحي في اليومين الماضيين، عندما ظنّ أنّ بإمكانه التخلص «بمحبة» وبديمقراطية «عذرية» من عصابة المتشدّدين الوهابيين المرتبطين بسفارات البترودولار وأميركا الشيطان الأكبر، مستعيناً بأميركا «الديمقراطية» و«الودودة»، التي سرعان ما كذبته وتركته طريداً شريداً يئنّ من خذلان من سمّاهم بمؤسسات الدولة له، الذين هم ليسوا سوى المعادلة نفسها التي أتت به إلى السلطة.

نعم فقد ظن عمران خان في لحظة وعي ويقظة استثنائية وظروف إقليمية ودولية تحوّلية متسارعة انّ بإمكانه تغيير شكل وبنية النظام السياسي الحاكم في الباكستان منذ نشوء الدولة ـ بكلّ هدوء ولطف و«مودة» المثقف الإصلاحي لتحقيق حلمه الورديّ!

 هو لم ينتبه في الواقع أنّ عمله هذا يعني في ما يعني تأميم القنبلة «الإسلامية»، كما قام مصدق بتأميم النفط في خمسينيات القرن الماضي..!

 وهذا أمر مستحيل دون الصدام مع عمود خيمة النظام أيّ الجيش، ودون ممارسة أيّ عنف ثوري ودون إراقة دماء..!

ايّ إجراء عملية ولادة قيصرية لباكستان، لا هو يملك أدواتها الليزرية ولا يريد استخدام أدوات جراحية فيها..!

مستنداً الى مواكبة اللحظة الإقليمية والدولية المتحوّلة غير المكتملة وغير الناضجة داخل مجتمعه أصلاً…!

 وكما أحبط مصدق إيران من قبله، أحبط عمران خان أيضاً لفقدانهما أدوات التغيير وكذلك منهجيته…!

فالعالم المتحكم بموقع ودور باكستان اليوم الخارجي، ورغم كلّ التحوّلات العالمية الإيجابية المحيطة، لا يزال عالم الذئاب وفي باكستان نفسها أيضاً يبدو انّ معدل موازين القوى الداخلية لا تسمح بعد بأحلام أمثال عمران خان من دون ثورة حقيقية وجذرية!

فالذين وقفوا ويقفون بوجه حلم عمران خان هم الجيش وصنيعته «طالبان باكستان» والأوليغارشية السياسية المرتبطة بالسفارات الوهابية والغربية وفي مقدّمها السفارة الأميركية والمخابرات الأميركية «سي أي آي»، والتي لا تزال هي من تمتلك مفتاح او «كود» أو «زر» القنبلة الباكستانية «الإسلامية» التي سمح لها أصلاً لتكون صنواً للقنبلة الهندية وليس أكثر!

ألا يتذكّر عمران خان كيف تمّ وأد طموحات ذو الفقار علي بوتو في سبعينيات القرن الماضي أيضاً، وكيف تمّت محاكمته وإعدامه..!؟

نعم ما حصل في اليومين الماضيين يمكن اعتباره محطة نوعيّة مهمة في سياق مسار التحوّل والتغيير في باكستان، ونحن نشاهد لأول مرة غضب الشارع الباكستاني المسلم، ونزعته الاستقلالية والتحررية، بل وحتى الثورية المطالبة بطرد النفوذ الغربي، وقد انتقلت من الشارع الى صالونات الطبقة الحاكمة متمثلة بتململ عمران خان وغضبه…!

لكن منسوب التحوّل والتغيير المجتمعيّ العام لم يصبح بعد كافياً على ما يبدو بعد لتأميم القنبلة «الإسلامية»…!

القضية بحاجة ربما الى «شمرة عصا» إضافيّة، كما يقول المثل، بل خطوة احتجاجية جذرية «خمينيّة» من جنس الباكستان تطيح بالعفن والتأكسد المتراكم فوق صدور شعب محمد علي جناح منذ الحرب العالمية الثانية…!

خصوم عمران خان في المقابل لن يتمكنوا بعد اليوم من إقفال الباب على التغيير المقبل بقوة على باكستان…!

لعله لا بدّ لعمران خان الانتظار قليلاً ليرى ونرى سوياً مخاض أوكرانيا، وحرب بوتين المفتوحة على إمبراطورية الكذب..!

أخيراً وليس آخراً فإنّ طريق الحرير الجديد الذي يريد الباكستانيون ان ينعموا به من بوابة الصين، صار حديدياً، وبالتالي صار لا بدّ لكلّ من يريد أن يساهم فيه، ان يكون صاحب قبضة فولاذيّة..!

«لسنا عبيداً عندكم»

خطوة في الاتجاه الصحيح.

لكنها ليست كافية.

حتى تمسك زر التغيير وتصبح *قائداً أعظم* جديداً لا بدّ ان تغزوهم قبل أن يغزوك، لأنهم يعدّون لك الأسوأ.

خذ العبرة ممن سبقوك، لا مكان للموقف الرمادي في القضايا الكبرى.

اللحظة «خمينيّة « يا عمران خان بكلّ امتياز! وإلا ذهبت تحت أقدام الفيلة.

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله…

Neo-lend-lease, or how to enslave a country

April 07, 2022

Source

By Batko Milacic

Until June 1944, the United States, the most powerful industrial power of the Second World War, had made the main contribution to the battle against Nazism in Europe through the courage of its pilots and Lend-Lease. Lend-lease was a special program authorized by the White House to supply military and civilian aid to America’s foreign allies, which assumed that whatever of those deliveries survived by the time the war was over, would either be returned or paid for by the recipients. Britain received $31 billion worth of military goods (around $400 billion in today’s prices), while the Soviet Union received similar assistance to the tune of $11 billion (140 billion). This assistance was vitally important for the British, who were losing the Battle of the Atlantic, and also for the USSR in the first year of the war, when this country suffered significant losses. However, shortly after the war, the issue of payment arose for the US-supplied military equipment that had not been destroyed in battle, and which had saved the lives of many US soldiers who had avoided direct participation in the war. The exact sum was negotiated for several years, and was repaid only during the 2000s. However, being a great power, which had made the main contribution to the allied victory over Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union could afford not to agree with the conditions put forward by the United States.

Unfortunately for Ukraine, however, it is not even a regional power, looked down on by its Polish and Hungarian neighbors, let alone Washington. Therefore, the modern-day lend-lease program invented for Kiev is provided on different conditions. The Zelensky government is getting more and more “military gifts” from the West, forgetting that it will have to pay for every Javelin rocket, every box of cartridges and every howitzer shell. Unless, of course, there will be someone left to pay after the Russian army, which is slowly but surely advancing in Donbass, has destroyed what has remained of the combat-ready Ukrainian forces, and starts storming the big cities.

That said, someone will still have to pay for the work being done on a round-the-clock basis by Bulgarian arms factories, which are the only ones capable of supplying Soviet-style weapons to Ukraine. Add to this the paycheck for the work of Belgian, US and British gunsmiths, highly paid instructors from NATO countries, for the supply of medicines and food, most of which is not provided on a pro bono basis. Therefore, in the event of an “honorable peace with Russia,” Ukraine will face multimillion-dollar debts. After all, it lacks the status that the Soviet Union enjoyed in 1945, so the Kiev regime will accept any conditions that would allow the current Ukrainian elite to stay in power.

This means that the current lend-lease system for Ukraine is fundamentally different from the one we had during World War II. The United States and Britain are ready to support both radical Islamic groups and Ukrainian neo-Nazis both of whom are complicit in war crimes. Their shared goal is to weaken Russia and make it more compliant. At the same time, unlike the semi-terrorist groups active in the Middle East, Kiev is potentially able to pay for the supplied weapons. The main goal is to save the territories and then start making people pay the bill by freezing their bank deposits for “restoration” purposes, confiscating their foreign currency assets, selling off forests and subsoil – something that was actively done already before the war. If the people of a country impoverished by war are no longer able to pay jacked up direct taxes, no problem – they will have to pay indirectly via excise taxes. As a result, many European and American businessmen will receive a multi-year annuity to be paid for by ordinary Ukrainians.

Moreover, millions of Ukrainian refugees will be brought back home and start earning their living instead of just spending Ukrainian money. As a result, the average Ukrainian citizen, convinced by propaganda that despite the loss of Mariupol, Nikolayev, Odessa, Kherson, and possibly Kharkov and Chernigov, he has won the war, will have to pay, along with his children and grandchildren, the multibillion-dollar “war debt,” while occasionally wondering why he has to cough up so much for utilities and electricity.

The Ukrainian authorities now have to make the people believe that there is still free cheese in the mousetrap. At the same time, they keep offering the NATO countries to sell rather than donate weapons to Ukraine, even though the government was unable to fully meet its defense spending targets even before the war actually broke out. However, ordinary Ukrainians, both in the rear or at the frontlines, sincerely believe that their country is getting everything, from the latest anti-aircraft systems to body armor, just for free. This is not so, of course, but they will never be allowed to see numerous agreements on military supply payments, which are so easy to keep under wraps as “confidential.”

Once the war is over, there will be numerous conferences held on payment “restructuring” issues, which will leave many ordinary people wondering how come they are going to pay for decades for this “selfless help.” Well, their compatriots, who will end up on the territories that Russia will occupy, will also face hard times having to build new roads, rebuild cities and get high-speed trains rolling again. And the average citizen, who “saved” Ukraine will be told by the media day in and day out that the main cause of his troubles are the Russians, who have snapped up the country’s most fertile lands and money-making factories. Meanwhile, it is the neo-lend-lease that is going to be the true cause of all his troubles…

Russia and Serbia are projected to become the Empire’s white colonies

April 03, 2022

Source

by Prof. Slobodan Antonić – (Translated by Joran Velikonja)

In this article I will present the various plans that Germany had with the Serbs and Russians after the expected victory in World War II. Why do I fall back to history? We frequently perceive Hitler and Nazism as an aberration in Western history. But Hitler was, in fact, just openly announcing that in Europe he will do what the West has already done elsewhere. As we’ll see, Hitler took the extermination of the Native Americans as a model for the colonization of Slavic lands, Russia in particular.

“It would be best if Serbia just disappeared from the map” —as attested by Hermann Neubacher, that opinion was prevalent within the German leadership in 1941 (see here, p. 89). But we find the same opinion in The Manchester Guardian (as The Guardian was formerly called), in August 1914: “If it were physically possible for Servia to be towed out to sea and sunk there, the air of Europe would at once seem cleaner” (herehere, p. 53).

Actually, the only difference between Hitler and the English was Hitler’s brutally proclaiming to do—and he had done as much as he could—what others in the West were doing slower and more subtly, the things they didn’t yet dare to undertake or weren’t able to accomplish.

* * *

Unlike the Kaiser, who wanted territorial expansion towards the Middle East and a redistribution of African and Asian colonies, Hitler’s primary goal was to colonize Slavic lands, from the Baltic to the Black Sea for starters and then onward to the Urals.

In Mein Kampf he writes that the Kaiser was mistaken in pushing Germany southwards. “When in today’s Europe we speak of new soil and land”, he wrote, “we primarily mean only Russia and the peripheral countries subservient to her. It appears that destiny itself wants to show us the way. […] The giant Empire in the East is ripe for its downfall.” (here; 44th unabridged German edition, p. 742-3; compare here, p. 118)

By the way, Hitler had adopted many concepts from the West. As J. Q. Whitman revealed in Hitlerʼs American Model (2017), race laws in the United States were the legal inspiration for the race laws in the Third Reich. In his book Hitler: The Definitive Biography (2014), John Toland showed how impressed Hitler had been with the system of Indian Reservations, the extermination of the indigenous peoples, the epidemics and starvation policies. According to Toland, when speaking to the German leaders, the Führer frequently “extolled the efficacy of the American extermination of the ‘red savages’ by starvation and in unequal combat” (here, p. 802).

“As a passionate reader of Karl May’s novels”, writes John Pool in his book Hitler and His Secret Partners (1997), “he would frequently refer to the Russians as redskins. He saw a parallel between his own efforts to occupy and colonize Russia and the conquest of the American West” (p. 272). He used to say that in the European East the Germans “had one single purpose: Germanization by peopling with Germans and treating the locals as redskins”. He even encouraged military officers to read Karl May and learn about all kinds of combat with the natives.

How did the Germans imagine their colonization of Russia and Eastern Europe?

The Generalplan Ost (1942) anticipated three types of agricultural estates to accomplish the colonization of Slavic lands between the Baltic and the Black Sea: individual (25-29 hectares; approx. 60-70 acres), intermediate (40-100 ha; approx. 100-250 acres) and large ones (250 ha; approx. 620 acres). The colonization was supposed to be carried out by some 6 to 12 million Germans, settled in areas from which 31 million Slavs would be banished across the Urals. The displacement would include 65 percent of Ukrainians and 75 percent of Belorusians, leaving behind 14 million Slavs, primarily as servants and unskilled workers (here).

The Plan foresaw an initial establishment of three settler colonies: in the Baltic (Memel-Narew Gebiet), in the Leningrad Oblast (Ingermannland) and in Crimea (Gotengau; see map here). Their foundation would have been Germanic farmers-warriors, living on family or collective estates, as in some form of a Military Frontier. Regional centers would have consisted of settler towns, 36 of them, numbering 20,000 inhabitants each, interconnected by a network of highways and railroad lines. The colonies were supposed to spread gradually, until they would merge into a unified whole.

The Slavs would have been exiled from their towns, whereas in the villages they would have been retained as farm hands. Slavic education wouldn’t have gone further than reading and writing (while also switching over to the Latin alphabet; here, p. 122). Hitler even thought that the Slavs should not be taught anything beyond the “knowledge of traffic signs, to be able to stay out of our way” (ibid.).

“Hitler liked to reiterate that the words Russia and Russian should be forbidden. Allowed are only Muscovy and Muscovites. After the victory of the Reich, the Muscovites will be simply driven onto their reservations, like the Indians in the USA” (here, p. 285).

* * *

What would have happened to Serbia?

In his book The German New Order and South-East Europe (in Serbian: Nemački novi poredak i Jugoistočna Evropa), Milan Ristović describes the plans for Serbia. Generally, there were two plans in existence.

According to the first one, submitted to the Ministry of External Affairs in July 1941, two million ethnic Germans (Volksdeutsche) from Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia were to be amassed in the Danubian German state Prinz Eugen Stadt. [or Staat?] It would have stood sentry over communications along the Danube and, akin to the Military Frontier, barring access to the Lebensraum from the south and east (here, pp. 101-106; 362-363).

Pursuant to that plan, the Serbs would have been exiled from Belgrade, Smederevo and other places along the Danube. The Plan stipulates that the “Serbs have to be driven away from the Danube and out of Belgrade in order to stress their political insignificance and to prevent any new plots against Germany, the order in the Balkans and in Europe — a frequent historical occurrence” (ibid., p. 106).

Belgrade was chosen as the heart of the German Danubian state, as the strategic center of the river basins of the Tisa, Drava, Sava and Morava. It was to become the “fortress of the Reich” in the borderland (Reichsfestung Belgrad), with the specific task of safeguarding two economic resources of key importance for Grossdeutschland: the Djerdap Gorge (Iron Gates) and the mining complex in Bor (ibid., pp. 105-106).

The Djerdap Gorge was essential for navigation control on the Danube and as the place where the Germans intended to build the largest hydropower plant in Europe.

On 25 September 1941 Hitler proudly proclaimed that now the Germans had finally returned to “places which already witnessed the breakthrough of the Germanic-German race: we were standing at the Iron Gates, we had been in Belgrade, we had entered the Russian space” (276). Two weeks later he speaks enthusiastically of the Danube as the “river course of the future” (der Zukunftsstrom). It will connect Germany, via the Black Sea, with the boundless granaries of her future colonies around the Dnieper and Don, then with the oil wells around Baku (the pipeline reached ports on the Black Sea), as well as with coal mines in the Donbas (276) [[1]].

Exhilarated by the conquests of Belarus and the Ukraine, Hitler then presents his vision of the future, in which the Danube is the main traffic artery of the Grossraum (the German economic space): “As big as it may become, the Danube-Main Canal cannot be built sufficiently large; of course, the Danube-Oder Canal should be added to it; thus, we will be getting an economic bloodstream of unheard-of proportions; Europe will be the land of unlimited possibilities” (276).

The Germans also worked out a plan (Grossprojekt “Eisernes Tor”) which anticipated the construction of a hydropower plant at the Iron Gates, “producing as much electricity as one half of all German power plants” (282). From the Iron Gates, electricity would have been transmitted to Graz and Vienna. Also foreseen was the “creation of one of the largest aluminum production facilities in Europe” due to the proximity of Romanian bauxite (Bihor Mountains) (ibid.). The Iron Gates Dam would be built by Russian prisoners and all construction was to be completed by 1947 (282-283).

The other key resource belonging to Serbia, was the Bor Mining Complex. It was the largest copper ore deposit in Europe, making Yugoslavia the top producer of copper on the continent in 1941 (here, p. 103). In 1943 the Germans were extracting up to 50,000 tonnes of ore per month (here, p. 354). Other Serbian ore resources, too, were of interest to the Greater Germanic Reich, such as lead mines (Trepča, Kopaonik, Avala, Ajvalija, Janjevo, Lece, Novo brdo i Rudnik) or antimony (40 % of European production: Krupanj, Zajača, Lisa and Bujanovac; here, p. 105).

So, all that had to be placed under control through the establishment of the Danubian German state, from which, as stated, the Serbs would have been displaced. Reichsminister Krosigk announced in 1942 the possibility of a new “Migration Period” (Völkerwanderung), with mass displacement—as he explicitly specified—of the Czechs, Poles and Serbs (here, p. 91).

* * *

But Hitler himself was not thrilled with the idea of a Prinz Eugen Stadt [or Staat?]. He planned to recruit the required six to twelve million German colonists of the European East by including those same two million Danube Swabians (111-113; 363). He did not, in fact, consider the area of the Danube basin in the Balkans as part of the German “living space” (Lebensraum), but rather as merely a piece of the Germanic “economic sphere” (Wirtschaftsraum; 172-173).

Hitler actually perceived the Balkans as a “junkyard of small states” (Kleinstaatgerümpel), which only the Germans can rearrange and civilize (50-51). After the Reichʼs victory those staes, too, would be placed into a special vassal relationship of stepwise arranged semi-sovereign and pseudo-sovereign statelets, as was planned in Berlin (ibid.).

Europe outside the Reich was regarded as the German Grossraum (larger habitat), which—after the victory—would see the establishment of a “hierarchy of peoples/nations” (Rangordnung der Völker/der Nationen). Even Italians were aware that within that order only the Germans would be at the top. As early as 13 October 1941 Mussolini was saying that Italy, too, would be reduced to a colony and might be forced to cede to the Reich parts of her territory, such as Trieste (334).

The Balkan peoples, deemed anyway poorly suitable for assimilation (nichtumvolkbar; 83), would be at the bottom of the European hierarchy, whereas the Serbs, as the “sworn enemies of order” (361), would find themselves on the bottom rung—provided, of course, that they were not re-educated in the meantime (362) [[2]].

That’s why the Serbs were treated as one of those peoples, along with the Russians and Poles, who “would have to remain under German dominion in the long run” (65). Unlike the vassal states, such as Croatia, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania or Bulgaria, which still had certain elements of independence, Serbia and Greece (the latter also perceived as a “problematic” country; 70), were occupied territories, where the administration was directly installed by the occupying power (360). Serbia was put under a particularly strict occupation regime (62,184 people were executed by firing squads; here, 116,264), while the Serbs across the border on the Drina were even worse off, having been mercilessly turned over to the Croatian genocide.

Still, even the “truncated Serbia” (Rumpfserbien; 285) probably would have become part of the European order in the end. But what would have been her fate?

The Germans didn’t really see the future European Völkerordnung as an order of states (Denken in Staaten), but rather as a system of commercial colonies (74-75; 161). The countries outside the Reich, especially those at the edge of the Grossraum, would be “advised” to “refrain” from developing their own “manufacturing of automobiles, electrical devices, locomotives, engines for transportation and industry, precision mechanics, chemicals, dyes…”, which would be under the exclusive authority of Germany. Others would have to stick to agriculture, mining and the coarsest processing of raw materials, “which do not require a particularly qualified workforce” (187). In order to absorb the agricultural labor surplus, industry would have to be developed in the Balkans, too, but it would be primarily linked with the exploitation of natural resources and only for the first phase of their processing (188).

As part of the de-industrialization idea, particularly with regard to the defense industry, 268 railway freight cars containing 4,488 pieces of machinery were hauled off to Germany from the Military Engineering Plant in Kragujevac, Serbia, in the course of 1941 alone! In March of 1943, 43 more freight cars were towed away, followed by another 37 in April. In the second half of 1943, 94 additional carriages with machinery were taken from Kragujevac, 96 freight cars with machinery from the Military Engineering Plant in Čačak, 88 freight cars from the factory in Obilić, 140 freight cars from the plant in Ravnjak close to Kruševac, 75 freight cars from the Military Engineering Plant in Lazarevac, 84 carriages from the “Vistad” factory, and so on. “This was the best organized looting of third-party property in recorded history” (here, p. 106).

The plan was to eliminate any competition to the Reich’s economy in all European vassal states, so as to ensure “absolute supremacy of German corporations” (here, p. 200). By way of example, the administration and use of the remaining industrial facilities in Serbia was handed over to the management of 29 major German companies with the entire production intended for the Reich, so that “almost nothing was left for the needs of Serbia and the Serbian public” (here, p. 108). Only the rail-road network enjoyed unlimited investment, but its primary role was to enable a more efficient exploitation of natural resources for the Grossdeutsches Reich (here, p. 188).

In addition to ores, large amounts of grain and lumber from Serbia were also hauled off to Grossdeutschland. As early as 19 June 1941 it was announced that farmers must cede for compulsory purchase all grain except 30 kilograms of wheat or 60 kilograms of corn per household member (here, p. 117). In 1942 Serbia was forced to deliver 320,000 tonnes of wheat, 600,000 tonnes of corn and 90,000 tonnes of oats, rye and barley (118). The “purchase” of all commodities was paid for with the money which Serbia had to remit as contribution for its own occupation (119-120), so that Germany was getting all goods from Serbia literally free of charge.

As a result of the export of lumber (but also due to insurgent activities), Serbia—although densely forested—was left with almost no firewood. In Belgrade they even contemplated “to log the Košutnjak park-forest and Mount Avala, in order to save the urban population from the approaching winter” (123).

But still, despite all that, it was assessed in Germany that, in fact, “the workforce from the South-East (of Europe) is the most valuable export commodity these countries can give us even now, but especially after the war” (here, p. 255). The Balkans was regarded as an “inexhaustible workforce pool” (257), able to provide to the Reich “more than three million workers”, of which number at least 1.5 million would be seasonal labor (up to ten months per year; 255). The war interfered with a more substantial export of manpower to the Reich and yet, from Serbia alone, 80,000 workers went (or were deported) to Germany (268).

Most interesting of all, this entire colonial order in Europe, designed for the unrestrained exploitation of markets, labor and natural resources, was supposed to be masked beneath the narrative of a “common European future” and a Europe “from Sweden to the Balkans” (352). In order to minimize the resistance of the vanquished peoples, it was recommended as early as 1940 to avoid the term “German large-area economy” (Grossraumwirtschaft) and to speak “always and only of Europe” (151). In the propaganda it was emphasized that “Germany does not seek to hold sway over countries”, the only ostensible goal being “an economically whole” Europe in which the peoples would “economically complement” each other (155). This “complementing” became reality after Germany tore down almost all intra-European (zwischeneuropäische) borders (288).

Hitler himself was actually a great European, except that he equated “European” with “pan-German” (31-32). The Germans, by the way, did not view the ongoing war in Europe as merely a war of conquest, but as a form of great economic restructuring. “This is not a war for throne and altar”, as Goebbels kept explaining (31 May 1942)—or rather it is not a war about who will govern over the peoples nor what their religion will be. According to the Reichsminister für Propaganda, this is “a war for raw materials” because we Germans “only want to cash in” (150).

It is clear that in such a system Serbia would have been but a marginal colony, no more than a German depot from which cheap labor, food and raw materials are taken as needed.

* * *

I am sure that the the above text was triggering parallels with contemporary circumstances in the reader’s mind, both in the geostrategic [[3][3] and economic sense. Russia got away (for the time being)—although the West hasn’t given up its pretensions to dismember her as a nation and subdue her as a culture (patterned after the Vatican’s current formula of “consecrating Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary”). But today’s Serbia is clearly not too far from the position assigned to her by the Nazi Plan B.

Change of mindset, limited sovereignty, deindustrialization, a readily available source of auxiliary labor, cheap raw materials, a pliant market, unprotected workers, unpaid work of the “natives” (with subsidies to foreign investors)… All those things are of current significance even today and I have written about it all in my texts: To Understand What We AreThe Colonial Establishment in SerbiaColonial PolyarchyThe Subservient IntelligentsiaSerbia — the “Territory” Grappled Over by Germany and Croatia

Now, I would add to this only an insight into the current wave of mass exodus to Germany. The Germans, as they say, currently need 1.4 million workers and our people are in demand because they easily integrate and assimilate. But don’t you have the feeling that in today’s Serbia there appears to exist some hidden Ministry of Emigration and Propaganda to Depart for Germany?

Not only that the National Employment Service recruits workers and sends them to that country, but “employers from Germany and their local agents openly canvass pre-graduation highschoolers right in their classrooms, all with the consent of the education authorities”. By the way, who’s to blame that Serbia has as many as 17 medical school graduates annually for every 100,000 inhabitants whereas poor Germany has only 11.

Another story is the open propaganda to emigrate, cultivated by, say, the daily Danas, in its column charmingly titled “Our People around the World”. It was already pointed out by Zoran Ćirjaković that this column had been “converted into a campaign for turning oneʼs back on Serbia”. The captions from the column speak for themselves: “Leaving Serbia wasnʼt easy, but it was essential”; “Despite all changes, life in Dubai is incomparably better than in Serbia”; “I miss Serbia, but Austria has offered me security”; “Itʼs not our fault, our system is rotten”; “We Serbs know how to get by and to gain respect”; “People from Serbia are accustomed to being more resourceful than ‘normal folks’”; “I bid adieu to this Serbia, but the love for the country still remains”…

“Along with the columns of numerous haters of this country”, notes Ćirjaković, “those shamefully spun testimonies of the escapees paint an image of Serbia as a repugnant, hopeless gas chamber in which no progress is possible”.

Thus the young migrant A. Kosanović, a political scientist, says that “a normal person canʼt bear the amount of horror and barbarism by the people who run things around Serbia” and that therefore “the average Serb has an extraordinary poverty of mind (?!), is in moral crisis and wracked by the tough life”. His colleague M. Pantić even argues that “in Serbia, everything has to be built from scratch (?!), thereʼs nary a meter of room to mend anything” (?!). And a similar campaign is spearheaded by Radio Free Europe (e.g. here).

Danas brags about being the Croatian ambassadorʼs favorite morning reading. Maybe thatʼs one of the reasons this paper will never raise questions such as: why two hundred Croatian companies are doing business in Serbia, whereas the number of Serbian ones in Croatia is — eight? And whether it is really necessary that our children learn from schoolbooks by Croatian publishers, eat Croatian meat products, indulge in Croatian confectioneries, drink Croatian water… — while the opposite, of course, is beyond imagination.

But Danas is surely the favorite paper of the German ambassador, too. On its pages, denkverbot is any topic that could awaken an ever so slight awareness of the colonial status in which Serbia finds itself, but even more so of the possible ways out of that situation (about some of which I have written here and here).

“The greatest success of (neo)colonialism is to convince people that it does not exist”. That’s why the first step towards emancipation is for us to understand the nature of the Atlanticist spirit, then to recognize the strategic interests of the West and to vow to ourselves, but also to each other, that we won’t allow them to be ousted from the Danube (so they could settle here some other, more suitable people); and no, we won’t allow to be treated, or to treat ourselves, as if we were — redskins.

Himmler had suggested, in his time, that the “Serbian people has grown out of rebellions over the centuries” and that with us one has to be forever on guard. Because no matter how defeated he may appear, “a Serb is always a Serb” (here, p. 90).

We only have to remain Serbs. Is that so much of a problem?

  1. [] In other respects, too, the Danube was the main transportation route for bulk cargo (Massengüter) — oil, lumber, grain and ores, not only because back then the traffic network was less well developed, but also on account of the much cheaper fluvial transport as compared to road and railway traffic (here, p. 277; 286). For instance, all the oil from Ploeşti (Romania), the main European oilfield at that time (278), was transported to the Reich upstream the Danube. That’s why Hitler was saying that “to safeguard navigation, the Iron Gates have to be placed under the umbrella of the Wehrmacht and stay under it in perpetuity” (283). 
  2. [] It is a fact that the Germans held Serbs in high regard as warriors and on that account were seeing them as a dangerous disturbance factor of their New Order. Hitler lamented that he tried to win over the Serbs “by promising them Thessalonica” and “demanding nothing of them”, only to burst out that “never before in his life was he as outraged as on March 27”, when it became obvious that “the Serbs were just a gang of conspirators” (89).“The Serbs, as eternal instigators of unrest, have to be cornered and suppressed as much as possible” was the dominant view in the upper echelons of the Reich, as attested by Neubacher (89). When in 1943 he suggested to Hitler to annex Montenegro to Serbia, the latter responded that the “Serbs (historically) have demonstrated their state-building power and far-reaching goals, all the way to the Aegean Sea”, and that “a people with such a political sense of mission” should not be allowed “to become dominant in the Balkans” (90). 
  3. [] “A glance at the map of today’s European Union reveals its striking resemblance with the farthest reach of the German military forces during the First and Second World Wars, especially on the Eastern Fronts. The fact that some Eastern Orthodox countries, such as Bulgaria and Romania, already are in the European Union, doesn’t mean that there is room for other Eastern Orthodox nations, too. Their accession into the EU signifies the fulfilment of the old German strategic goal of exerting control over the Balkans. One also shouldn’t forget that these two countries, Serbia’s neighbors, were German allies in WW II, and Bulgaria even in the Great War”. 

Andrei Martyanov: Not A Fool’s Day in the New World

March 31, 2022

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Sitrep: Operation Z

March 29, 2022

Source

By Nightvision

Several big developments are giving us an idea of a shifting picture on the ground today. First let’s start with the fronts where the largest changes took place, and then give a broader strategic analysis.

-Many reports today confirm our previous determination that Russia is in fact conducting a major regrouping of its forces following what Shoigu today has called the successful conclusion of the main objectives of the first phase of operations:

“Shoigu: In general, the main objectives of the first phase of the operation have been achieved. The combat capabilities of the VSU have been significantly reduced, which allows us to focus our main attention and main efforts on achieving the main goal – the liberation of Donbass.

This is in conjunction with the announcement from RF that some VDV units will be withdrawn from the Kiev region as a sign of good faith for the negotiations.

Of course the Western press/analysts have predictably spun this news as, ‘Attritioned Russian forces are pulling out and downscaling their operation in order to concentrate on more realistic objectives in the east’.

There is a very informative thread by Scott Ritter today who explains the simple concept of a military ‘feint’ (misdirection, deception, diversionary tactics etc) we’ve often mentioned before in the discussion of Russia’s opening maneuvers which seemed to many of us who actually follow military matters, to be a ‘pinning strategy’ that keeps Ukrainian forces from redistributing and relieving their primary forces in Donbass and elsewhere.

“1/ Big Arrow War—a primer. For all those scratching their heads in confusion, or dusting off their dress uniforms for the Ukrainian victory parade in Kiev, over the news about Russia’s “strategic shift”, you might want to re-familiarize yourself with basic military concepts.

2/ Maneuver warfare is a good place to start. Understand Russia started its “special military operation” with a severe manpower deficit—200,000 attackers to some 600,000 defenders (or more). Classic attritional conflict was never an option. Russian victory required maneuver.

3/ Maneuver war is more psychological than physical and focuses more on the operational than on the tactical level. Maneuver is relational movement—how you deploy and move your forces in relation to your opponent. Russian maneuver in the first phase of its operation support this.

4/ The Russians needed to shape the battlefield to their advantage. In order to do this, they needed to control how Ukraine employed it’s numerically superior forces, while distributing their own smaller combat power to best accomplish this objective.

5/ Strategically, to facilitate the ability to maneuver between the southern, central, and northern fronts, Russia needed to secure a land bridge between Crimea and Russia. The seizure of the coastal city of Mariupol was critical to this effort. Russia has accomplished this task.

6/ While this complex operation unfolded, Russia needed to keep Ukraine from maneuvering its numerically superior forces in a manner that disrupted the Mariupol operation. This entailed the use of several strategic supporting operations—feints, fixing operations, and deep attack.

7/ The concept of a feint is simple—a military force either is seen as preparing to attack a given location, or actually conducts an attack, for the purpose of deceiving an opponent into committing resources in response to the perceived or actual actions.

8/ The use of the feint played a major role in Desert Storm, where Marine Amphibious forces threatened the Kuwaiti coast, forcing Iraq to defend against an attack that never came, and where the 1st Cavalry Division actually attacked Wadi Al Batin to pin down the Republican Guard.

9/ The Russians made extensive use of the feint in Ukraine, with Amphibious forces off Odessa freezing Ukrainian forces there, and a major feint attack toward Kiev compelling Ukraine to reinforce their forces there. Ukraine was never able to reinforce their forces in the east.

10/ Fixing operations were also critical. Ukraine had assembled some 60,000-100,000 troops in the east, opposite Donbas. Russia carried out a broad fixing attack designed to keep these forces fully engaged and unable to maneuver in respect to other Russian operations.

11/ During Desert Storm, two Marine Divisions were ordered to carry out similar fixing attacks against Iraqi forces deployed along the Kuwaiti-Saudi border, tying down significant numbers of men and material that could not be used to counter the main US attack out west.”

By the way, von Manstein, considered one of the greatest German WW2 generals famously employed such tactics, particularly in the same Donbass region against the Soviet forces, where he utilized feints and strategic retreats in order to capture a much larger encroaching force by way of misdirection and diversions). You can watch videos such as this one to see how an extremely agile mechanized force can employ diversionary tactics and misdirection to bait a much larger force https://youtu.be/vL1BiYvG-38

A source from Kiev further has reported that “Russia now has MORE armor units accumulated on the border than it did prior to the war…” This is extremely telling, and if true, a clear sign that a major phase 2 operation is in the preparatory stages. And there’s many sightings/videos of new forces coming in such as this one: https://twitter.com/MotolkoHelp/status/1508794997184897024

The full statement: Russia has pulled more equipment to the border than it was before the invasion – according to Ukrainian resources affiliated with the intelligence of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

The intelligence community “Informnapalm” specifies that specifically in the Kursk region a huge amount of military equipment is recorded – more than it was on February 24th.”

(photo of earlier build up for reference)

-Now onto a few actual tactical updates:

By far the most actively successful theatre for RF forces has been Izyum. Kamyanka was mostly captured and there are now reports that fighting has been recorded as far south / down the road as Krestyshche (likely just advance/scout forces), which is right on the outskirts of Slovyansk. Similarly in the SW direction from Izyum, fighting continues around Barinkove and more and more forces continue to pour into this area via pontoon bridge crossings on the Donets river. This will become a bigger and bigger focus in the coming days as the “regrouping” pivots towards full Phase 2, as this area will become the main pincer of the north to enclose the ‘Great Cauldron’.

-In Mariupol, cleansing continues and Ramzan Kadyrov has flown in to help oversee the final stages of the Mariupol liberation and continue giving his troops morale on the frontlines. The city is divided into small pockets which are strategically being pushed by RF aligned forces towards the Azovstal factory so that they can concentrate and bottleneck all the remaining Azov forces there. The verdict is still out whether, as some have expressed, Russia will choose to “sacrifice the factory” once all of Azov is in there (via massive bombing), to get rid of them all in one shot, or instead cleanse it piece by piece so as to salvage it intact. The factory is an important industrial center that was once amongst the largest in the world for steel, so likely Russia is hesitant to completely destroy this heritage to Soviet industry.

And by the way, though we don’t know the exact force distribution in Mariupol, it has become clear that there are at least 3 distinct groups operating in several directions which have finally ‘linked’ at central points and are now often operating together. These are 1. the DPR forces from the north, the Chechen forces from the East, and now a special Russian Marine force from the West – what appears to be ‘Naval Infantry’. Several videos can be seen of these forces now operating in conjunction, though how the command is distributed between them is uncertain as of yet:

https://www.bitchute.com/embed/aXEDgonE4vTY/?feature=oembed#?secret=6XCpE5tZ3f

Also, this might be graphic but a must-see. This is what Azov battalion has become in Mariupol: https://www.bitchute.com/video/lVf6xGHKXEBx/

A Ukrainian transport helicopter was also shotdown yesterday in a desperate last ditch attempt to save some of the Azov leadership. It tried to come in stealthily, flying low over the Azov Sea, bypassing Russian land corridor / radar coverage, but once it got in close it was nevertheless detected and obliterated.

-The administrative center building in Nikolayev was hit by Kaliber missile this morning. Official Ukrainian estimates claimed only 20-30 casualties (wounded plus killed), but chatrooms of Nikolayev have apparently begun to leak actual lists of casualties of confirmed casualty names on Telegram, and reports indicate there’s 200+ so far and possibly will be higher than the barracks of the 79th Brigade which was struck last week. Rumors after that hit last week stated that Ukraine command issued an immediate decree to no longer allow publishing of any ‘aftermath’ photos like the ones on the 79th which showed gruesome dead of the UAF. This means we likely won’t see much photo confirmation but the sheets with casualty names can be seen on the Telegrams of Colonel Cassad and others.

-In other news, Deputy Head of the State Duma Committee Vladimir Shamanov today has announced that ‘Russian Spetsnaz’ have caught some of the perpetrators of the horrific torture / war crimes done to our artillery troops on the eastern outskirts of Kharkov the other day. Here is his statement:

“Today they are lying at their feet, asking for mercy” – Deputy Head of the State Duma Committee Vladimir Shamanov claims that those who mocked Russian servicemen in Ukraine were captured by Russian special forces.

“Those who bullied our servicemen did not rejoice for long, after three days our special forces captured these bastards. Today they roll at their feet, begging for mercy. I will call their names. One bastard was called Sergei Velichko, nicknamed Chile. The second – Konstantin Nemechev. Both bastards grew up as Nazis from a fan group of the local Metalist football club. This is what they themselves told during the first interrogations. And so it will be with everyone who is unworthy, violating the Geneva Convention, to act with our prisoners of war.”

Some however are skeptical of these claims until Russian leadership produces photos/videos proving these people are captured.

-In economic news, the Ruble has now almost fully, miraculously recovered to its pre-war exchange rate against the USD.

Let’s recall that the West claimed the Ruble would catastrophically drop to 200 against 1 USD. Instead it spiked to a high of 130-150 and has been steadily rebounding, now almost completely back to normal, which was in the 75-80 range prior to February 24 and the onset of the special operation. This is a massive economic shock and humiliation to the entire West, to say the least.

On top of that, Russian stocks have opened back up and they are gaining positively as well:

-One last thing to note. I’ve said numerous times now that U.S. and Western equipment in general has been a catastrophic failure in the Ukraine. But there’s some additional important news that continues to reveal the veracity of these claims.

Firstly, this Pentagon reporter has stated that the Pentagon plans to buy hundreds of FEWER Javelin missiles this year than it did last year, DESPITE giving away thousands of them to Ukraine. https://twitter.com/JackDetsch/status/1508517753413636096

It is now clear that the Pentagon leadership has seen the utterly dismal performance of the Javelin and now wants to phase it out from U.S. forces. Remember, out of thousands of Javelins supplied, thousands of videos published by Ukraine, not a single successful usage of the system has ever been recorded. In fact the vast majority of successful Ukrainian defeats of Russian armor happens at the ends of legacy Soviet/Russian systems and mostly artillery. Russian forces continue to find Javelin units completely unused because Ukr troops have found them to be unwieldy and impractical in combat – too long to set up and use, too heavy to carry around, and not effective even when used. For urban combat where troops have to be as light, mobile, and agile as possible, the Javelin is absolutely worthless with its large CLU interface and overly-bulky design. The Pentagon has clearly seen the failure of the over-hyped system.

-In another sudden and unexpected report, the Pentagon now wants to scrap DOZENS of F-22’s.

https://www.rt.com/news/552870-pentagon-budget-f-22-jets-boneyard/

They have suddenly decided they want to ‘divert funding’ to the next generation platform. There is clearly connection here to something the Pentagon has witnessed in Ukraine that has left it scrambling to rethink its approach to modern warfare. You see all proxy wars are laboratories for Great Powers to test and assess their equipment. The F-22 was the flagship of the U.S. airforce, the ONLY plane forbidden by Congress to sell to any ally even in ‘export version’. The F-35 was meant for the export market while F-22 was supposed to be solely the unique and unmatched great hope and pinnacle of American engineering that would lead to victories in future wars. But it seems now that the Pentagon has had a taste of what modern Russian air defenses / radars are capable in Ukraine and is no longer confident of the F-22’s chances. It has suddenly scrambled to desperately dump the F-22 and prepare for the “next generation” platform titled the ‘Next Generation Air Dominance’ project, which would consist of heavily utilizing integrated drone warfare and possible drone swarms controlled by the pilot. This appears to indicate the U.S. sees no other way to defeat Russian air defenses and airpower in general apart from massive over-utilization of integrated drone saturation – it can no longer count on F-22’s after seeing how Russia has completely nullified the Ukrainian air and anti-air capabilities, which by the way were orders of magnitude greater than the capabilities of the Serbians in the 90’s who humiliated the U.S. air force several times.

-Also, following Lugansk Head Paschenik’s statements earlier, that a referendum would be conducted for Lugansk to officially join the RF, the head of DPR Pushilin today has also issued statements saying that the DPR will hold a referendum to officially join the Russian Federation but only after the conflict has ended. Either way, it is big news for LPR/DPR to look forward to after cessation of hostilities. If successful, this would add another massive 3.8 million population injection into the RF which, added to Crimea, would bring RF’s total population in the range of 148,000,000. Keep in mind, prior to the events of 2014, RF’s population was 143 million.

-Lastly, many people have been asking why Russia isn’t crippling Ukrainian internet capabilities. Today’s report claims massive Russian cyber attack has brought Ukraine internet connectivity to a mere 13% nationwide. 

https://www.zerohedge.com/technology/internet-provider-ukraines-military-hit-most-severe-cyberattack-invasion

“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.

Book Review: Seven Roads to Moscow

March 26, 2022

Source

By Francis Lee

Seven Roads to Moscow is an intriguing book written by that strange animal, a British soldier intellectual.

Lieutenant-Colonel W.G.F.Jackson

MC, BA, R.E.

Instructor, Royal Military Academy,

Sandhurst, 1950-53

I read this book when I was only 17 and at the time it made a great impression on me. The stories of the seven invasions of Russia have now passed into history. In order of invasions Russia’s uninvited guests were the Vikings, Huns, Swedes, French, and Germans. Each in their turn marched through forest, marsh, and Steppe into the heart of the Russian lands. The impression which these invaders left behind, however, is one of abject failure. All the invaders sooner or later had to succumb to the vastness of the Russian lands and the fortitude and genius of the Russian people.

The only partial success was with Rurik in the rise and fall of Kiev Russia, 862-1228. Rurik is said to have arrived in Novgorod in 862 and gradually established his sovereignty over the native Slavs. From the military point of view Rurik’s invasion is unique in Russian history. It was the first and only invasion which has been largely successful. The tactical methods of Rurik lie shrouded in the mists of early Russian history. For the invaders the military problems of invading Russia do not appear in tangible form until the days of the Swedish King Charles’ XII ill-fated (1707-1709) invasion and no more successful than the much larger and later expeditions by Napoleon and Hitler.

The sole aim of these armies who marched eastwards all had the same objective: to destroy the Russian armies. Moreover, each was faced with the same military problems: namely how could they defeat the Russian armies before they withdrew into the vastness of the Russian interior. If they failed to defeat the Russian armies in the early period of the campaign, how could they prevent the Russians recruiting new levies and returning to counter-attack with overwhelming strength? And how could the invaders manage to keep their armies supplied and reinforced once they had advanced deep into the Russian lands?

Charles XII had the simplest method of all – namely to outmarch and outfight his opponent. He relied on the superior marching and tactical skills of his soldiers to achieve results. But Tsar Peter the Great was a wily old fox who was determined to outwit his opponent and avoid a decisive action. The policy of scorched earth and withdrawal found the Swedes weak, ill-nourished and a long way from home. Charles had failed because he turned away from his primary objective and allowed himself to be cut-off from his base for the uncertain advantage of rallying the somewhat unstable Cossacks of the Ukraine to his banner. He was unable to stem the steady wastage of his best Swedish soldiers. The Cossacks and Kalmuks and other peoples of southern Russia whom he was forced to recruit as reinforcements, were no better than Peter’s reinforcements. The Battle of Poltava (8 July 1709) was the decisive victory for Peter the Great of Russia over Charles XII of Sweden in the Great Northern War. The battle ended Sweden’s status as a major power and marked the beginning of Russian supremacy in eastern Europe. This was the inevitable defeat of trying to achieve too much with too little.

Napoleon did not fare any better. The Grand Army some 600,000 strong marched into Russia in 1812. When the French Revolution had broken out (1789) there was little to indicate that within 23 years a Napoleonic Army would be treading the French Road to Moscow. In what was to become inevitable the West moved East. Thus, the die was cast. Napoleon obviously believed that he was invincible, and the Grand Army outmatched any other fighting force in Europe. But as the Scottish poet Robbie Burns reminds us – ‘’The best laid plans of mice and men oft gang aglay.’’ (Translation from the Scottish Celtic – ‘go awry’)

Napoleon tried 3 methods to bring Tsar Alexander to terms. His first plan was to win a quick military victory in these western lands by breaking through the Russian front using overwhelming force at the point of attack. He then hoped in crushing in turn each half of his opponent’s army. This plan failed because the Russians withdrew too soon.

A group of men riding camels Description automatically generated with medium confidence

When Napoleon appreciated that his first plan had failed, he reoriented his strategy. His next step was to lure the Russian forces in attempting to give battle, but the Russians made a tactical retreat further and further into the inhospitable wilderness of marshes and forests of the older Russian lands. If the Russians would only stand and fight, he might well crush them. After all no enemy had ever survived Napoleons military and tactical genius in his set-piece battles. Be that as it may he was unable to persuade the Russians too accept such a battle until it was too late.

From his arrival until the fall of Moscow Napoleon tried every stratagem to entice the Russians to give battle. In threatening the city of Smolensk and eventually Moscow the Russians did stand and fight in the Battle of Borodino in front of Moscow, but the unexpected toughness of the Russian armies prevented an outright victory for Napoleon.

Moreover, things were now beginning to move against the Grand Army; they were no longer possessed of sufficient numerical superiority, and Napoleon was now too far from home to use the Imperial Guard, his last reserve, to snatch a victory. The Russian army remained intact, but Moscow, Russia’s ancient capital, fell into French hands.

Now the problems for the French military began to mount as had the Swedish during their earlier debacle. In front of the Grand Army villagers abandoned their villages and set them ablaze, burning or hiding their supplies. Marauders and guerilla bands started to take a toll of all that passed along the slender French supply routes. The French needed to leave garrisons in every town along the Moscow highway, and the necessity of providing guards for all convoys sapped at the morale, sickness and fatigue caused by constant disease, dust, and intolerable heat. By the time that Kutuzov, the Russian commander-in-chief, offered battle at Borodino, it was too late for Napoleon to win a decisive victory. However, it was too early to stop the Russians to prevent the French capture of Moscow – the Russian army was not yet strong enough, but the wind was getting into their sails. So, all was not over for Napoleon yet.

However, the fall of Moscow was not the be all and end-all of Napoleon’s campaign. In all his previous campaigns the fall of the enemy’s capital had brought about a decision – that is, a surrender. But the Russians were, however, playing from a different game-plan and did not react in the way that other European nations generally reacted, and they were quite prepared to withstand the loss of Moscow. The great conflagration which followed the French entry into the city only served to harden the will of every Russian to resist. The fall of Moscow was in fact the decisive finish to Napoleon’s campaign.

The invasion and defeat of Russia was predicated on three main approaches. 1. Initially a quick victory in the opening stages of the campaign using overwhelming force. 2 A deliberate set-piece pitched battle, 3. And finally the capture of Moscow.

In the first two methods he was defeated by the immense space of the Russian landscape and by the rugged determination of the Russian soldier, and in the third method by his failure to appreciate the determination of the Russian people.

Now Napoleon’s options had come to naught there was only the long retreat from Moscow for the Grand Army which piece by piece was to fall apart in a rendezvous with its total demise.

In 1941 Hitler and the German General Staff launched the invasion of the USSR which had been meticulously planned and prepared. Hitler was fully aware of the reasons for Charles’ and Napoleon’s failures. This was above all a political/ideological war and Hitler was filled with contempt for the Russian Army and the Russian population that his predecessors possessed in abundance.

In the replay of Napoleon’s tactical demise and the rout of the Grand Army, Hitler’s Wehrmacht had defeated the Western European armies, with ruthless efficiency – the French and the low countries were forced to surrender, and the British chased out of the European continent only because they had a bigger navy than Germany as well as the Royal Air Force with the Spitfire being the most advanced fighter plane. Like Napoleon before him Hitler realized the key to success lay in the destruction of Stalin’s frontier armies before its slow mobilization could be completed. The German military concept of Blitzkreig i.e. ‘lightning war’ was a very different animal to the pitched battles of WW1 which in military terms had become archaic in this new approach to warfare.

Now new technologies had mobilized warfare with the advent of railways, motor transport and aircraft. The wireless would make possible the efficient control of vast armies across the whole breadth of the Soviet Union (as it then was).

Hitler’s initial strategy was both military and political. He needed firstly to destroy the Red Army and Communism, so that the military and political objectives were coordinated. The next step was the seizure of the unlimited Russian abundance of economic resources. But in purely military terms there was a certain sense of Déjà vu. In this context with the Soviet Army, Hitler, like Napoleon before, him made significant inroads into Russian space very quickly, but despite capturing large numbers of Russian POWs he failed to trap and destroy the main body before it was reinforced by the slowly mobilizing reserves from deep inside of Russia beyond the Urals. In addition, his endeavour to capture the centres of Soviet resistance was no more successful. Only Kiev and Kharkov fell into his hands, but Moscow, Leningrad and Stalingrad never succumbed.

In this earlier period of the war the Wehrmacht was seemingly irresistible; but it became like Napoleon’s initial success, only to be locked into what was to become the usual pattern of invasion into Russia. In his drive for the acquisition of Russia’s economic resources Hitler did seize the industrial and grain producing areas of Ukraine, but by his efforts to seize the oil of the Caucasus he lay himself open to the first counter offensive by the fully mobilized Red Army.

Hitler’s solution to this strategic problem showed a characteristic under-estimate of the strength of the Russian Army and an overestimation of his own resources. ‘’He decided to hold the Army groups North and Centre on the defensive whilst he deployed all his strength in the sector of Army Group South. Using the great bend of the Don to protect his northern flank between the Don and the Volga near Stalingrad. From here he could either attack southwards into the Caucasus, and possibly into the middle east to join hands with Rommel.’’ (Seven Roads to Moscow – p.290) But this was rather wishful thinking since by this time the Anglo-American forces were in North Africa as well as their navies in the Atlantic and Pacific this in addition to the US/UK bombing offensive which had started in earnest against German cities.

The German 6th Army, in triumphalist mode, Paris – 1940

The German 6th Army had advanced in the southern part of the Ukraine and had crossed 3 rivers, the Dnieper, the Don, and the Volga, it had arrived in Stalingrad in the shape of the 6th Army, in the same way as it had when it entered Paris in 1940. But the outcome was rather different. By 1942 the German offensive had stalled in Stalingrad.

In the bitter fighting in the city, the Wehrmacht was halted in its tracks and unable to move forward but its flanks were exposed and vulnerable to a Russian counterattack. The line of defence was manned by Romanian and Hungarian forces of dubious quality and loyalty. The Russian counterattack became inevitable and so it worked out when the Russians broke through the Romanian defences and completed the encirclement (or Cauldron) as the Russians now call them.

This changed the whole character of WW2. The Red Army battled all the way to Berlin as well as hooking up with British and American forces coming from the other direction. The war was, apart from the American Japanese conflict in the Pacific and the British-Japanese conflict in Malaya and Burma, was effectively over.

‘’Post-war vital economic objectives for Russia were equally hard to choose, since Russia’s bitter experiences of invasions from the West had taught her to move and develop her industries further and further eastwards as the ranges of western European Armies had increased. The gradual move to the East started with Five Year Plans before the German invasion. Hitler’s attack only accelerated this process. Industrial plants in areas which were overrun by the Nazis, were often dismantled before the Germans could capture them. The dismantled machinery was then to be re-erected beyond the Urals.’’ (Seven Roads to Moscow p.315)

Conclusion

The only lasting road to Moscow was the Viking Road of Rurik that provided the constructive services which the Russian people themselves wanted and for which they themselves asked.

‘’Let us hope that no-one will ever be tempted to emulate Charles, Napoleon, and Hitler in imposing a military solution of a kind of which history has shown must fail, and which will bring nuclear annihilation to mankind.’’ (Jackson – Seven Roads to Moscow – p.319)

In the Greek fable of Pandora’s Box, Pandora could not resist opening the box, but she opened the box, and several evil entities started flying out of it. These included hatred, envy, greed, disease, poverty, pain, death, and war. All these miseries of human life escaped the box and entered the real world. By the time Pandora slammed back the box’s lid, all the evils had escaped except for ‘hope’.

I begin to wonder if we have in fact opened the box?

Ukraine’s parliament compares country to Nazi Germany

24 Mar 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen net 

The Ukrainian parliament compared its own battles to the Third Reich’s.

The Azov batalion in Kiev (Shutterstock)

Ukraine’s parliament again requested that the West enforce a “no-fly zone” over the nation on Wednesday. However, the parliament sparked outrage online when it compared the damage of its cities to that of Nazi Germany during Allied air attacks. The odd choice of analogy is the most recent Nazi-related comment to emerge from Kiev.

A tweet from Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (Parliament) depicts a demolished structure in Hamburg in 1943 against comparable destruction to the Ukrainian city of Kharkov in 2022.

Above the image reads the text “when the sky is open” and an English text reads “#Closethesky over Ukraine.”

“Close The Sky” is in reference to Ukraine’s suggestion of NATO imposing a no-fly zone over Ukraine, which Kiev has been denied by Washington and Brussels.

It would entail NATO agreeing to shoot down Russian aircraft over Ukraine, bringing the alliance into open conflict with Russia and, in the words of US President Joe Biden, resulting in “a third world war.”

Read more: WH secretary ‘not interested’ in establishing no-fly zone over Ukraine

Surprisingly, the parliament’s picture begs the same friends who devastated Hamburg in 1943 to fight on Ukraine’s side now. The Rada did not explain why it opted to equate Kharkov to Hamburg, especially given that Kharkov was attacked by Germany during WWII, which would have provided for a different comparison that did not include equating Ukraine to Nazi Germany.

The analogy elicited some perplexed responses online. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Ukraine’s leadership of having Nazi Germany sympathies, and he stated in a speech marking the commencement of Russia’s military operation on Ukraine last month that one of Russia’s aims was to “denazify” the country.

Apart from incorporating the neo-Nazi ‘Azov’ battalion into its military, the Ukrainian government has begun attempts to depict its people as genetically separate from Russians, whom Kiev leaders have publicly referred to as “orcs.”

Read more: Neo-Nazi Aidar Battalion holding 300 locals and monks hostage

Stepan Bandera, an infamous Ukrainian nazi collaborator, is regarded as a hero by Ukrainian nationalists, and only last week, Fahruddin Sharafmal, a Ukrainian television broadcaster, sparked outrage by approvingly quoting Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann in asking for the murder of Russians and their children.

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