strategic culture

US in Damning Admission of Long-Planning War Against Russia
Editorial, Strategic Culture, Oct 7 2022

A study by the Rand Corporation published more than three years ago demonstrates incontestably that the war in Ukraine is in fact the manifestation of a bigger willful confrontation against Russia whereby the US is attempting to weaken and subjugate Moscow. What is happening is without doubt the culmination of long-held US planning. That puts a wholly different meaning on the current conflict in the Ukraine, now in its eighth month. This is not an unprovoked assault on Ukraine and Western democratic values by Russian aggression, as the Western governments and media would make out. The conflict has been deliberately fomented, stoked and now exacerbated by policy choices made by Washington and its NATO partners.

The Rand Corporation is one of the oldest think tanks in the US, established in 1948. One of its cofounders was air force commander General Curtis LeMay, the architect of the 1945 firebombing of Tokyo and the atomic holocaust at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. LeMay was an arch-Cold War hawk who advocated preemptive nuclear strikes on the Soviet Union in the early 1960s. The corporation he set up, Rand, is funded by the US government and in some ways can be seen as the public brains and mouth of the Pentagon and CIA. The study cited above, entitled ‘Overextending and Unbalancing Russia’ and published in Apr 2019, has caught the attention recently of many independent observers. What makes it topical is how real, current events are unfolding in a way that the American planners envisaged. Among a list of cost-imposing options urged by the Rand authors to be meted out against Russia were:

  • Providing lethal military aid to Ukraine
  • Mobilizing European NATO members
  • Imposing deeper trade and economic sanctions
  • Increasing US energy production for export to Europe
  • Expanding Europe’s import infrastructure to receive US liquefied natural gas supplies

The US-backed coup d’état in Kiev back in Feb 2014 was the key event to make all this subsequent planning possible. The regime that came to power was rabidly anti-Russian and infested with neo-Nazi ideology. It was a zealous tool for American and NATO policy to antagonize and threaten Russia. For eight years, the Kiev regime repudiated peace treaties and waged a genocidal war with full US and NATO backing against Russian-speaking people in the self-declared Donbass republics. Those republics have now joined the Russian Federation, along with two other former Ukrainian regions. Russia’s military invasion of the Ukraine on Feb 24 2022, was precipitated by relentless NATO-backed aggression not just against ethnic Russians in Ukraine but against Russia itself. Arguably, it became a war of necessity for Russia to defend its national interests, prompted by a proxy war of choice engendered by the US and its NATO allies. The Rand Corp study makes it abundantly clear that the incipient dangerous conflict between nuclear powers has been orchestrated from the outset by the US. The world is witnessing an abysmal situation that amounts to a quasi-WW3, as our columnist Declan Hayes wrote this week.

Atrociously, the US and its NATO partners keep piling ever-more lethal weapons into Ukraine that are making possible direct attacks on Russian territory. Under the nefarious tutelage of Washington and London, the Kiev regime spurns any diplomatic effort to find a political solution for peace. Well-meant proposals for peace put forward by international figures like Elon Musk or Roger Waters are met with derision and death threats. There seems to be a spiral of insanity that the US, European elites and the Kiev regime are beholden to. The Kremlin has warned that it will use all means necessary to defend itself if Russia’s existential security is threatened even by conventional weapons. The dynamic here is perilous for catastrophic nuclear all-out war in a way that makes the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 pale by comparison.

It needs to be emphasized that the present dangerous dilemma has been consciously driven by US policy choices. Recall that Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former US presidential strategist to Jimmy Carter, hailed Ukraine as the “pivot” for hegemonic control over Eurasia and a bridgehead to destabilize Russia in his 1997 book The Grand Chessboard. Brzezinski was also the architect of the Afghan Quagmire which the US covertly instigated to draw in Soviet troops into a ten-year war. That war was deliberately engineered by massive American weaponization of Afghan proxies who later evolved into Al Qaeda and other Islamist terror networks, to “give the Soviet Union their Vietnam.” The debilitating drain on Moscow from the Afghan Trap was arguably a causal factor in the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

What is happening currently in Ukraine has unerring parallels. As the Rand Corp eagerly anticipated, the conflict is aimed at “overextending and unbalancing Russia.” It is no doubt heavily invested that the military, economic and political pressures being generated and imposed on Moscow will lead to the weakening of the Russian state, the collapse of governing structures, regime change and the splintering of the national territory into disparate mini-states over which the US can exert hegemonic dominance for exploitation of Russia’s vast natural wealth. President Putin recently pointed out that this geopolitical objective of defeating Russia is the touchstone of our time.

Other sources corroborate the conclusion that this conflict is a war of choice. NATO Sec-Gen Stoltenberg disclosed in an opinion article for the Financial Times last month, probably unintentionally, that the US-led military bloc has been weaponizing the Ukraine since 2014 for the purpose of agitating tensions with Russia. Thus, NATO weapons being pumped into the Ukraine are not a “response” to “defend” against Russia. The offensive military aid is merely being accelerated after years of provocative arming of the former Soviet republic and Russia’s immediate western and historically close neighbor. Last month, another senior NATO commander, Admiral Rob Bauer, chairman of the bloc’s military committee, made the brazen admission:

The planning for that began years ago but we’re now implementing it.

It is therefore indisputable that a legal case can and should be made. The US and its allies are guilty of perpetrating a deliberate war of aggression against Russia that has long been in the planning works. That’s not only a supreme war crime, according to Nuremberg principles. It is also placing the very existence of the entire planet at grave risk. Can anything be more God-damn evil?

Russia Illegally Annexes Its Own Land and People, According to Western experts
Stephen Karganovic, Strategic Culture, Oct 3 2022

The referenda set a dangerous precedent for the rulers of Western “democracies,” in addition to constituting a direct and serious non-military threat to the sustainability of their Ukrainian project. Yes, that is the unanimous refrain of Western opinion makers following the referenda conducted in the four regions of Eastern Ukraine. That the overwhelming majority of the population there, braving deadly Ukrainian artillery barrages, expressed their preference to be part of Russia, and not of the discriminatory Ukrainian state (or whatever is ultimately left of it) makes no difference to these opinion shapers and policy makers. The mechanical unanimity which prevails in the West concerning the major geopolitical shift that has just taken place in the East is a disturbing reminder of the single-mindedness which, in roughly the same part of the world but under a different ideological guise, used to characterise political and media discourse about a generation ago.

To anyone with a superficial knowledge of the historical and political context, the epilogue of popular consultation in the four regions, as well as in the Crimea eight years ago, should be an open and shut case. (Doubters will be edified, while being entertained, here.) Invocations of international law, not to mention human rights, in these situations work entirely in Russia’s favor. A fact-based and rational analysis, however, is unlikely to greatly impress the utterly ignorant and brain-washed Western public. The only version of events that they have heard is that Ukraine, allegedly a “sovereign” country, was invaded by a foreign aggressor and that sizable chunks of its territory are now being swallowed up by the invader. The notion that Ukraine is a sovereign state is, of course, laughable. Ukraine is in fact a subservient political vassal of the collective West, all traces of autonomy having been voluntarily renounced by its own corrupt and traitorous political elite after “independence” in 1991.

It goes without saying that the Western public, with few exceptions, are blissfully unaware of the demographic, historical, and cultural realities of present-day Ukraine. Political borders, however arbitrarily drawn, are in their minds the equivalent of ethnic frontiers which must be respected. That dimension of their ignorance was spectacularly illustrated, but on a much higher level, by the then US Sec State Warren Christopher during an international conference held in the midst of the Bosnian war. To the shock of the better-informed participants, he casually asked when did the Bosnian Serb population cross the Drina River to invade Bosnia, apparently unaware that in Bosnia they had been indigenous for at least the preceding thousand years. British foreign secretary (now prime minister, unfortunately) Liz Truss made a similarly embarrassing gaffe late last year at a meeting in Moscow, stunning her hosts when she expressed strong disapproval of Russian military manoeuvres on territory she thought was in the Ukraine, evidently unaware that it was part of the Russian Federation. The list could go on, but the point of it is that if high level political functionaries are ignorant of basic historical and geographical facts, how much can reasonably be expected from members of the zombified general public?

With regard to the allegedly egregious violation of international law committed by Russia by conducting a referendum to enable residents of Donetsk, Lugansk, Kherson and Zaporozhye to choose the country they wished to live in, a couple of hard data points are in order. The first and most fundamental data point (probably beyond the knowledge of most citizens of Western counties) is the fact that prior to the 1920s there was a geographical concept associated with Ukraine, mainly in the form of several provincial subdivisions of the Russian Empire, but that as a self-sufficient political entity with defined borders before then it had never existed. To the question, what lands constituted Ukraine as an internationally recognized entity prior to its emergence within the USSR in the 1920s, there is no answer. Just as the creation of Ukraine as a constituent republic of the USSR was an arbitrary political gesture, so was the determination of what fragments of the former Russian Empire it should eventually be made up of. Ukraine was fabricated by an act of revolutionary political will, for the ideological convenience of the USSR’s central authorities and certainly without any meaningful consultation with its inhabitants. As a decreed-from-on-high constituent republic of the USSR, the Ukrainian SSR was the precursor of the present-day Ukraine. Its separation from the USSR was similarly accomplished by agreement of three unelected and unauthorised Russian, Byelorussian, and Ukrainian functionaries. In terms of international law, and of the vaunted Western democratic values in particular, present-day Ukraine, and its borders, have therefore as much legitimacy as the entity created in the 1920s that it originated and evolved from.

The second hard data point has to do with precisely how the regions of Kharkov, Lugansk, Donetsk and others bordering on the Black Sea came to be incorporated into the newly-constituted Ukrainian Soviet Republic. It was done to augment the substance of the new soviet republic by expanding it to include huge swathes of territory populated by Russian speakers who had no relation to the new Ukrainian identity that was being created out of thin air. There was no referendum or even a political climate in which inhabitants could freely manifest their preference. About a hundred years ago certain decisions about the geographical and ethnic composition of Ukraine were made at the top and then administratively implemented at lower levels. Options of dissent and appeal were excluded. The third hard data point concerns the manner in which in 1954 the Crimea was incorporated into Ukraine. The method followed was exactly the same as described previously. The peninsula which during the preceding hundred fifty years, since before Ukraine had made its political appearance, was incontrovertibly a part of Russia populated by a Russian majority, suddenly, without explanation, and without consultation with its inhabitants, was transferred to Ukrainian control. The first opportunity that the people of Crimea had to manifest their will in regard to this was in 2014, just as the first such opportunity granted to the people of the four regions was a few days ago.

What is the principle of Western democratic governance that prohibits a review of decisions made behind the backs of those they impact? Why may such decisions not be tested for popular consent? If the inhabitants of former British colonies and Dominions have a legally recognised right to decide whether they still desire to be subject to the British monarchy, why should inhabitants of the four regions of Ukraine and Crimea be deprived of the inherent right to decide whether they wish to be subject to the government in Kiev? Especially since they became locked into the present-day Ukrainian state not by their own choice but by the imposition of arbitrarily drawn internal borders. Later, just as arbitrarily, those internal borders were declared to be international. What legal doctrine or moral principle obligates the inhabitants of those regions to treat as sacrosanct political decisions made at their expense by others, behind their backs and lacking their consent? The hysterical uproar in the collective West over the referenda, one suspects, has less to do with the results, which were foreseeable based on expectations of normal behaviour of threatened and abused human beings, than with the fact that someone had the audacity to organise them at all. In the West unmanipulated expressions of popular sentiment have become a relic of the past. The referendums set a dangerous precedent for the rulers of Western “democracies,” in addition to constituting a direct and serious non-military threat to the sustainability of their Ukrainian project. That is why a vicious propaganda campaign was immediately unleashed to smear, disqualify, and misrepresent them at any cost.

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