Ukraine, Yet Another Manufactured Crisis

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

[Crossposted to CounterPunch]

An important article, entitled Russia needs to defend its interests with an iron fist, appeared in the Financial Times the other day, to wit, March 5th. It is an analysis of the blowup in Ukraine from a Russian perspective. 

The writer, Dr. Sergei Karaganov, makes perfect sense. He is a distinguished academic in Moscow and a leader of Global Zero, the international movement for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons. Sounds like a great idea and way overdue.

My own outlook is that the imbroglio in the Ukraine was orchestrated by Neoconservative elements in Washington. The Neoconservatives,  as you may know, began infiltrating the U.S. Government and the American news media in earnest during the H.W. Bush Administration. They came into their glory during the co-consulship of Dick Cheney and his sidekick, G.W. Bush.

In the present instance, Russian President Vladimir Putin has reacted in a totally predictable manner to a situation which the Neocons have brought about in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, on the southern flank of Russia. Did Obama's NSC expect Moscow to stand around and do nothing while Russia's Black Sea fleet headquartered at Sevastopol in the Crimea was put at risk? Does Washington want a new Cold War? If so, why?

Meddling by Washington in the internal affairs of other nations is certainly nothing new. Current activity ought to be seen in historical context. It has been a hallmark of U.S. foreign policy since the days of the Spanish-American war in 1898. The immediate consequences of American interventionism have rarely been salubrious for the people on the ground. Under U.S. Presidents from both political parties, America has become a busybody nation, either looking for trouble or deliberately stirring it up.

Presidents Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt are the prime exemplars of outsized trouble-making. Both deliberately lied America into a world war, while loudly proclaiming just the opposite...that they were trying to keep the country out of war. It is clear in retrospect that Wilson and Roosevelt had some very serious mental problems, not the least of which was grandiosity.

In April 1917 Wilson came to the rescue of the gigantic, far-flung British Empire and of its obtuse, myopic leadership in Whitehall. American intervention in the Great War collaterally paved the way for Bolshevism, created the Soviet Union, and handed Palestine, thanks to the Balfour Declaration, over to the Zionists. The outcome of World War I and the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 constitute a Pandora's box that does not quit. The box disgorges its noisome contents to this very day.

As for Roosevelt, he was uniquely responsible for the outbreak of war in Europe in 1939. He and his operatives fermented it from behind a curtain and out of harm's way. I'm referring to FDR's incendiary, sub rosa foreign policy from 1937 onward with respect to the internal borders of Europe, which borders were none of Washington's business. 

Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, France and Poland became hapless pawns of White House intrigue. The result was a trumped-up crisis involving the German port city of Danzig on the Baltic Sea in the summer of 1939, and the outbreak of the European war in September. FDR viewed the dispute over Danzig between Poland and Germany as the last chance for war in Europe, and he promoted it accordingly.

It took a few more years of machinations aimed at the Pacific for FDR and his minions to provoke and maneuver the self-respecting Japanese into attacking Pearl Harbor. That “surprise” attack galvanized and unsuspecting public into hysteria. Mission accomplished. Using this "back door to war", America was officially railroaded into the ongoing bloodbath in Europe. 

In our own time, post Cold War, outbreaks of chaos and ruination in which Washington has played a role have been serious, but relatively minor when compared to the two colossal world wars of the 20th century. At least so far. For example, at the present moment both Iraq and Syria are self-destructing simultaneously, as a direct consequence of amoral and ill-advised U.S. foreign policy decisions. 

For Iraq, putting aside the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s, it all began with Saddam Hussein's oil production dispute with the fake state of Kuwait in 1990. In the aftermath of murderous U.S. sanctions during the Bill and Hillary Clinton Administration, and a "shock and awe" invasion during the Republican co-consulship which followed, the enterprise of Iraq has reached its endstation today with a gruesome, internecine war, waged by car and truck bombings. Oh, the fruits and the joys of Operation Iraqi Freedom! Does anybody think this was not foreseen?

As for Syria, that beautiful country has long been targeted by the Tel Aviv-Washington axis, just like Iraq, because Syrian President Assad is an ally of Hezbollah in Lebanon and is on good terms with Iran. Assad also wants a return of the Golan Heights, which Tel Aviv seized and annexed from Syria years ago and has no intention of giving back. Accordingly, Assad has been placed at the top of Israel's strategic hit list. As a point of extreme irony, the project to wreck and dismember Syria is being cynically outsourced to crazed Sunni Jihadists. 

Tehran is also on the same list. The elaborate, comprehensive economic and financial sanctions now in place against the Islamic Republic of Iran are designed to destroy the Iranian economy. The goal is regime change, pure and simple. Iran's nuclear program is nothing but a cover story to justify the sanctions. It is a Washington scandal of huge proportions. Europe acquiesces in it to humor Washington. 

There is no Persian Bomb and no Iranian nuclear weapons program. Obama knows this fact, one must assume, but he allows the charade to go forward unabated for the simple reason that, being a front man, he has little choice. Were Obama to unmask the charade now, he would call into question U.S. foreign policy, almost in its entirety, going back to 1990, not to mention exposing himself, Senators and Congressmen as first-class charlatans.

Vladimir Putin is also on this same hit list, because, among other reasons, he is on good terms with Syria and Iran, and he does not play the game of geopolitics according to the rule-or-ruin, Neocon playbook as Washington and Tel Aviv. He has refused to drink their Kool-Aid. He is trying to look after the best, legitimate interests of his country in the aftermath of the crackup of the Soviet Union. What is so terrible about that?

Moreover, Putin and Russia have been on a roll recently. I am referring to the Sochi Olympics,  to Russia's second presidency of the G8  and to Putin's pivotal role (and that of Russia's able foreign minister Sergey Lavrov) in persuading Obama and Kerry to abandon a cruise missile attack on Syria, which was being justified by a crude false-flag operation. Such an attack would have been madness. Putin to the rescue!

In truth, the know-it-all Neocons and their dupes, camp followers, running dogs and assorted busybodies in Washington have been stymied by Putin, and were almost relegated to sidelines. They did not like it one bit. They are used to getting their way, without any embarrassing questions. But now, thanks to the upheaval they covertly engineered in the Ukraine with U.S. taxpayers' money, they are making a comeback and thirsting for revenge. 

They would love to slap some serious economic sanctions on Moscow, just like they did to Iraq and and are doing to Tehran, damn the consequences to Europe, the Russian people, or anybody else. Sanctions, like Drones, are in. First destabilize, then destroy. There seems to be little downside. So far, Vladimir Putin has outsmarted the mischief-makers and warmongers, and not lost his cool. Let's see if he can do it again.

--Copyright 2014 Patrick Foy--


Related Article:

US accused of ‘trying to destroy Russia’

By Catherine Belton in Moscow // The Financial Times, March 6th, 2014

Vladimir Yakunin: 'We are witnessing a huge geopolitical game'

An ally of Vladimir Putin has accused the US and a “global financial oligarchy” of organising the violent overthrow of power in Ukraine to “destroy” Russia as a geopolitical opponent.

Vladimir Yakunin, a former senior diplomat who now heads Russian Railways, the state railways monopoly, claimed the US had for decades been intent on separating Ukraine from Russia and bringing it into the west’s fold.

“We are witnessing a huge geopolitical game in which the aim is the destruction of Russia as a geopolitical opponent of the US or of this global financial oligarchy,” Mr Yakunin said in an interview on Thursday.

“A CIA analysis . . . described three possible scenarios for the development of the geopolitical situation. The most acceptable scenario was considered to be one in which a certain world government is created – and the realisation of this project is in line with the concept of global domination that is being carried out by the US.

“We saw this in Iraq, we saw it in Afghanistan, we saw it in Yugoslavia and in North Africa. Today, the borders of carrying out this doctrine have moved to Ukraine.”

Mr Yakunin’s comments offer a view into the mindset among hardliners in Mr Putin’s closest circle as the Kremlin reacts to the overthrow of Viktor Yanukovich, the pro-Moscow Ukrainian president.

His comments reveal a section of Putin’s security establishment still smarting from the collapse of the Soviet Union – an event Mr Putin has called the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century – and fears the recent revolution in Ukraine was aimed at pulling the former Soviet republic into the EU and Nato.

Mr Yakunin said he hoped Mr Putin’s call at the weekend for approval from the Federation Council, the upper house of parliament, for the deployment of Russian troops in Ukraine had given western leaders “a cold shower”. This, he added, should see them step back from backing the “armed fighters” who, he claimed, had sparked the shooting on Kiev’s central Maidan Square that led to dozens of deaths and whom he accused of being behind the ousting of Mr Yanukovich.

The west must now help to ensure democratic elections in Ukraine to create “legitimate organs of power without the participation of armed men and fascist elements”. However, he added that May 25, the date set for presidential elections, was too early to ensure a true democratic process.

“The blood on the asphalt is not yet even dry,” he said. “It would be great if this cold shower that Mr Putin sent to western leaders – I mean US politicians – had its effect and they understood it is not decent to stamp around in your boots in someone else’s house.”

Mr Yakunin said the west had consistently reneged on its assurances to Moscow since 1991 that it had no intention of encircling it by expanding Nato to include countries on Russia’s borders. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the three Baltic states have joined the alliance as well as eastern European countries – including Poland, Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania – most of which were once in the Warsaw Pact.

“If you look at things objectively, [the former German chancellor Helmut] Kohl swore to [Soviet leader Mikhail] Gorbachev that the exit of Soviet troops from Germany would not lead to Nato’s approach towards Russia’s borders. But in reality everything that has happened is the exact opposite.

“Today I heard that Nato intends to more than double the contingent of fighter jets patrolling the territory of Baltic states. It seems to me this looks fairly comic [but] is in fact pathetic and disgusting.”

Washington was still fighting cold war battles aimed at crushing and emasculating Russia. “Zbigniew Brzezinski [the former US national security adviser] wrote in 1996 that with Ukraine, Russia is a great power and without it it is not – and this was not a new idea [in the US]. More than 40 years ago, when the US developed plans for the destruction of the Soviet Union, CIA documents said it should be accompanied by the separation of Ukraine from Russia.

“Somewhere on the shelves of the CIA’s leaders there are such files with these projects and they activate them maybe every three years.”

Calling any threat of sanctions of “secondary” importance, he said that Mr Putin’s decision to call for parliamentary approval of the deployment of Russian troops on to Ukraine’s soil “absolutely correct”.

“On the one hand it created balance and showed the world that Russia will not leave people in trouble in the face of mad rogues and [in a state of] anarchy when the authorities practically do not exist. On other hand, he was absolutely counting on this being a serious restraining factor for those idiots.”

“Here we are speaking about people who have been one civilisation ever since people have been writing history books,” he said, referring to the links between Kievan Rus, which emerged more than 1,000 years ago, and the modern Russian state. “Russia could not fail to react. The president could not fail to react. His own people would not forgive this, not to speak of Ukraine.”