Saturday 12 March 2022

The Ukrainian War will transform the world

"The Russian invasion of Ukraine resulted from two immense strategic blunders, (Robert Service says. The first came on Nov. 10, when the U.S. and Ukraine signed a Charter on Strategic Partnership, which asserted America's support for Kyiv's right to pursue membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. The pact made it likelier than ever that Ukraine would eventually join NATO -- an intolerable prospect for Vladimir Putin. 'It was the last straw,' Mr. Service says. Preparations immediately began for Russia's so-called special military operation in Ukraine."
Wall Street Journal last weekend.

"The European Union has announced that all Ukrainian refugees will receive temporary (one- to two-year) protected status regardless of where they apply for it. The Dublin Convention – which requires the first country of entry to assess migrants’ asylum applications – has been tossed out. One hopes the EU will now follow the same process for all future asylum seekers, regardless of their skin color.

"The hope is also that peace will soon prevail, making the latest influx of refugees into Europe temporary and reversible. But, given the vast scale of the destruction in Ukraine, and the lingering effects the war (and the pandemic) will have on its economy, EU member states should be prepared to host refugees for the medium to long term."

Hrishabh Sandilya and Zhivka Deleva, Project Syndicate

Instead of serving up a pack of lies, the Kremlin would have done better to have ordered its conscripts, and itself, to read War and Peace. On the eve of Borodino, Prince Andrei Bolkonsky says war is not chess; “success never depends . . . on position, on equipment, or even on numbers, and least of all on position”. “On what, then?” someone asks. “On the feeling that is in me and him . . . and in each soldier.” Leo Tolstoy, who had seen war close up, was right. Which is why, in the end, the Russian conquest of Ukraine will also be Putin’s abysmal defeat.  


  1. The United States should honestly answer the following questions:

    -- The United States claimed that promoting NATO expansion is for the sake of peace. Has it achieved this?

    -- The United States claimed it would prevent war in Europe. Has it done so?

    -- The United States claimed to be committed to a peaceful solution to the crisis. But apart from providing military aid... what has the U.S. side done for peace?

    Wang Wenbin, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson

  2. The United States put Ukraine on track for a violent confrontation with Russia by undermining the Russian-backed Minsk II agreement, which would have kept Ukraine out of NATO and allowed home rule for the Russophone provinces Donetsk and Luhansk within a sovereign Ukraine.

    Russia charged that Washington intended to move nuclear missiles to the Russia-Ukraine border 300 miles from Moscow, and invaded Ukraine to preempt this. Whether the Biden administration insisted on Ukraine’s option to join NATO out of design or incompetence, US policy is now in ruins.

    US strategists double down on war with China
    Strategic thinkers can’t wrap their minds around the fact that American power is fading after 30 years of blunders
    MARCH 12, 2022

    1. Alas he is right. He is possibly my cleverest Facebook friend.

  3. Left to his own devices, Putin would never have been able to divorce Russia from the West, and thus insulate Russian society — and, by extension, his ability to govern — from Western sanctions. Here, the US and Europe are doing Putin a huge favor, with current sweeping sanctions giving him the ability to separate Russia from its economic association with the West without the politically fatal consequences of being seen to do this on his own volition.

    Thanks to the US-led sanctions, Putin will now be able to neuter the Russian oligarch class for good. The sanctions have likewise politically neutralized that portion of the Russian middle class that was economically married to Western businesses, goods, services — and mystique.

    Putin has been granted his divorce without so far paying any meaningful political price. While the US and Europe may claim that Putin brought this on by invading Ukraine, to the Russian people, US and European actions led to the divorce. The demonization of everything Russia-related by many in the West only helps the Russian government deflect blame from itself, and onto the West. The West made it personal.

    “I assure you,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told the press on Mar. 10, “we will overcome adversity, and we will do everything to no longer depend on the West in any strategic sectors of our life that are of decisive importance for our people.” Russia, Lavrov said, “will no longer depend on any Western companies.”

    Scott Ritter

    1. interesting. Putin will suffer. Sanctions don't work as a rule - look at Cuba and Iraq - but soft sanctions like Ikea, Instagram and Facebook closing will have an effect - sporting sanctions had an effect on South Africa.

    2. Ritter is always acute, very. Not always right but very often.