MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Russia’

Understanding the Pentagon’s Provocation of Russia – The Future of Freedom Foundation

Posted by M. C. on February 2, 2023

What would Kennedy have done with Ukraine if he had been president? He would never have allowed the Pentagon to use NATO to absorb former members of the Warsaw Pact. He would have also recognized that Russia’s reaction to U.S. nuclear missiles in Ukraine would have been the same as the U.S. reaction to Russian missiles in Ukraine.

https://www.fff.org/2023/01/30/understanding-the-pentagons-provocation-of-russia/

by Jacob G. Hornberger

President Kennedy had a unique ability that Pentagon generals did not have. He was able to analyze an international crisis by placing himself in the shoes of his adversary in an attempt to understand his adversary’s motives. Doing that enabled him to figure a way out of the crisis that did not involve war. The response of the generals and the Pentagon was always the same: invade, bomb, kill, and destroy.

Today’s generals are no different from their counterparts back in the early 1960s. They are unable to step into the shoes of Russian officials and try to figure out a resolution of the crisis in Ukraine. Instead, their answer is bombs, missiles, death, destruction and, now, tanks. They are simply not mentally equipped to do what Kennedy did. 

Understanding how Kennedy resolved the Cuban Missile Crisis goes a long way toward understanding what motivated the Russians to invade Ukraine. 

In 1962, Kennedy learned that the Soviet Union (i.e., Russia) was installing nuclear missiles in Cuba. With the full support of the Pentagon, Kennedy decided that he could not let that happen. There was no way that U.S. officials were going to permit the Russians to install nuclear missiles pointed at the United States from only 90 miles away.

And yet, the Soviets had every right in the world to install nuclear missiles in Cuba, so long as it was done with the consent of the Cuban regime. After all, even though the Pentagon and the CIA considered Cuba to be a de facto U.S. colony, Cuba was, in fact, an independent and sovereign country. If it wanted Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba, it had the right to invite the Soviets to install them there.

Nonetheless, both Kennedy and the Pentagon decided that they would not permit Russia’s nuclear missiles to remain in Cuba. Why? Because they simply did not want nuclear missiles pointed at the U.S. from only 90 miles away. They considered such missiles to a grave threat to U.S. “national security.”

Reflecting how important this principle was to Kennedy, he was even willing to go to nuclear war against Russia to prevent those Russian missiles from being stationed in Cuba. In fact, what is not widely recognized is that Kennedy actually did initiate war against the Soviets. That was when he ordered a military blockade against Soviet ships carrying nuclear weapons to Cuba. Under international law, a blockade is an act of war. Fortunately, the Soviets did not respond with retaliatory war measures.

Yet, Kennedy’s blockade was met with severe disapproval of the generals. It was considered to be too weak. One member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff compared Kennedy’s blockade to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement of Hitler at Munich. With their one-track mind, the generals were pressuring Kennedy to bomb and invade Cuba. Their insistence on pressuring Kennedy to take an action that would almost certainly result in nuclear war reflected how strongly they felt about not having Russian missiles so close to America’s border.

Thus, if Kennedy were president today, he wouldn’t need to ask why the Russians felt the same way about having U.S. nuclear missiles stationed in Ukraine, which shares a border with Russia. He would understand that their sentiments would be no different from the sentiments of Kennedy and the Pentagon with respect to Russian nuclear missiles in Cuba.

But there was another factor that Kennedy considered when he stepped into the shoes of the Russians in an attempt to understand the crisis and arrive at a mutually agreeable peaceful resolution of it.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Russia’s “Sanction-Proof” Trade Corridor To India Frustrates The Neocons | ZeroHedge

Posted by M. C. on February 2, 2023

Unforeseen by the warparty wizards, the pentagram and their puppet, NATO.

The point of trade sanctions is to make the intended victims (civilian men, women and children) suffer so much that they rise up against their government. Didn’t work, again.

CIA textbook definition of Blowback.

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/russias-sanction-proof-trade-corridor-india-frustrates-neocons

Tyler Durden's Photo

BY TYLER DURDEN

Authored by Conor Gallagher via NakedCapitalism.com,

Russia, Iran, and India are speeding up efforts to complete a new transport corridor that would largely cut Europe, its sanctions, and any other threats out of the picture. 

The International North-South Transport Corridor (NSTC) is a land-and sea-based 7,200-km long network comprising rail, road and water routes that are aimed at reducing costs and travel time for freight transport in a bid to boost trade between Russia, Iran, Central Asia, India.

For Russia, the “sanction-proof” corridor provides a major export channel to South Asia without needing to go through Europe. But Brussels and Washington, frustrated by their losing in Ukraine and inability to put much of a dent in the Russian economy, could lead them to take more desperate measures.

Lately, Estonia, which has a population smaller than Russia’s armed forces, has been making noise about causing problems in the Gulf of Finland, Estonian Minister of Defense Hanno Pevkur is talking about how Helsinki and Tallinn will integrate their coastal missile defense, which he says would allow the countries to close the Gulf of Finland to Russian warships if necessary. Estonia is also floating the possibility of trying to inspect Russian ships. From Asia Times:

 It is unlikely Estonia can carry out any inspections given that it only has two patrol vessels (EML-Roland and EML-Risto) and no other warships except some mine layers. But if Estonia even tried, it would create another friction point that Russia could exploit if it chose.

There is also a strategic element. With Finland joining NATO and already a de facto member, the Gulf of Finland becomes significantly more hostile for Russia and there will be growing pressure on Russian political leaders to take action against a rising threat to Russian security.

While Ukraine is far away, the Russians see NATO’s “ganging up” on Russia as a key issue for Russian security and stability. This brings the Baltic region into sharper focus because Russians see NATO trying to surround them and undercut their economic and military advantages.

It’s hard to take Estonia’s bluster seriously but equally difficult to put anything past the neocons in Washington and their adherents in the Baltics. Regardless, Russia would prefer a trade route with India that saves time and money and avoids Europe.

©Peter Hermes Furian

While NATO’s war against Russia has sped up the cooperation between Moscow, Tehran, and New Delhi, India and Iran are coming under various types of pressure that could delay full implementation of the corridor. And Azerbaijan, a key nexus in the INSTC, is a wildcard as it grows increasingly confrontational with both Iran and Armenia.

First the recent developments on the INSTC:

  • India is helping to develop the Shahid Beheshti Terminal at Iran’s Chabahar Port in cooperation with the Iranian government.
  • Iran and Russia recently signed a contract for Russia to build a cargo vessel for Iran to be used at the Caspian port of Solyanka, which is being developed jointly by the two nations as part of efforts to strengthen the Caspian Sea transportation network.
  • RZD Logistics, a subsidiary of Russian railway monopoly RZD, has begun regular container train services from Moscow to Iran to serve growing trade with India by transloading.
  • Rezaul Hasan Laskar, the foreign affairs editor at Hindustan Times, says the strategic Chabahar Port in  southeastern Iran has “become more important following its growing use” but that “it needs to be connected to Iran’s railway network.” Iran has accelerated that project, and with an investment boost from Russia, is speeding up the completion of the Astara-Rasht-Qazvin railway, another transport corridor that will connect existing railways of Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran to the INSTC.

In the meantime, most of the goods that Russia normally transported across the Baltic Sea to reach the North Sea port of Rotterdam now sail instead to India. Oilprice reports:

Russian crude oil loadings from Baltic ports are on track for a 50% hike from December to January, Reuters reports, citing its own data combined with trader insights.

Russian Urals and KEBCO crude oil loadings specifically from the ports of Primorsk and Ust-Luga will experience the increase, Reuters said, adding that the bulk of those loadings (some 70%) will head to India.

In December, Russia loaded 4.7 million tonnes of Urals and KEBCO from the Baltic ports, Reuters said, citing Refinitiv data.Russia now accounts for approximately 25% of India’s crude purchases, while some sources put it closer to 30%.

The increased trade with Russia is a primary driver bringing New Delhi and Tehran closer together – largely a result of Europe severing itself from Russia. According to Reuters, at the end of November Moscow sent India a list of more than 500 products it wants India exporting to Russia, “including parts for cars, aircraft and trains.” The report added:

Indian imports from Russia have grown nearly five times to $29 billion between Feb. 24 and Nov. 20 compared with $6 billion in the same period a year ago. Exports, meanwhile, have fallen to $1.9 billion from $2.4 billion, the source said. India is hoping to boost its exports to nearly $10 billion over coming months with Russia’s list of requests, according to the government source.

And with all the increased trade, New Delhi and Moscow are looking for more efficient supply lines.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

NATO’s ‘war against Russia’ inches ‘closer to direct conflict’

Posted by M. C. on February 1, 2023

After all, it is mainly Ukrainians paying the price of the “war against Russia” fueled from afar.

https://mate.substack.com/p/natos-war-against-russia-inches-closer

Aaron Maté

(US M1 Abrams tanks at a training site in Germany, 2018. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Sharon Matthias / 22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

Since the first week of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, French President Emmanuel Macron has repeated a mantra on behalf of his NATO partners: “We are not at war with Russia.”

Nearly one year in, that notion has officially been dispelled.  

“We are fighting a war against Russia,” German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said this week.

Baerbock was trying to assuage NATO allies’ frustration over German reluctance to send Leopard 2 tanks into Ukraine. She can now claim vindication. In a reversal of its initial position, the German government has announced it that will deliver Leopard 2 tanks to the Ukrainian army.

To overcome German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s jitters, the White House engaged in an about-face of its own, approving the shipment of 31 US-made M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine. Scholz had insisted on conditioning any German tanks to a similar US commitment. Up until this week, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin was “dead set against providing” the M1s, and declared there to be “no linkage between providing M1s and providing Leopards.” Austin had argued that the M1s are too cumbersome for Ukraine, requiring costly jet fuel, heavy maintenance, and lengthy training.

Just last month, a senior US defense official declared that “even one M1 was out of the question,” according to the Washington Post. When used by US troops in Iraq, the M1s were “hard for us to sustain and maintain,” the official noted. For Ukraine, “it would be impossible.” Even last week, senior Pentagon official Colin Kahl dismissed the prospect of sending the “very complicated” M1, because “we should not be providing the Ukrainians systems they can’t repair, they can’t sustain, and that they, over the long term, can’t afford.”

As Gen. Mark Milley learned when he came out in favor of diplomacy with Russia to end the fighting, the Pentagon’s outlook is no match for Washington’s proxy war fever. The White House reversed course, Politico notes, after “a parade of Democrats and Republicans” in Congress “pressured the Biden administration to grant Berlin’s request to send U.S. tanks first.” What the Pentagon “was not taking into enough account,” the New York Times reports, citing a US official, “was the intense fear among European governments of doing anything to provoke Russia without having the cover of the United States doing the same thing first.” When it comes to provoking Russia, the US is undoubtedly first.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

 This article is more than 8 years old – It’s not Russia that’s pushed Ukraine to the brink of war

Posted by M. C. on January 28, 2023

So you don’t hear much about the Ukrainian government’s veneration of wartime Nazi collaborators and pogromists, or the arson attacks on the homes and offices of elected communist leaders, or the integration of the extreme Right Sector into the national guard, while the anti-semitism and white supremacism of the government’s ultra-nationalists is assiduously played down, and false identifications of Russian special forces are relayed as fact.

Seumas Milne

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/30/russia-ukraine-war-kiev-conflict

The attempt to lever Kiev into the western camp by ousting an elected leader made conflict certain. It could be a threat to us all

Illustration by Matt Kenyon
‘The reality is that after two decades of Nato expansion, this crisis was triggered by the west’s attempt to pull Ukraine decisively into its orbit … ‘ Illustration: Matt Kenyon

Wed 30 Apr 2014 16.01 EDT

3,230

The threat of war in Ukraine is growing. As the unelected government in Kiev declares itself unable to control the rebellion in the country’s east, John Kerry brands Russia a rogue state. The US and the European Union step up sanctions against the Kremlin, accusing it of destabilising Ukraine. The White House is reported to be set on a new cold war policy with the aim of turning Russia into a “pariah state”.

That might be more explicable if what is going on in eastern Ukraine now were not the mirror image of what took place in Kiev a couple of months ago. Then, it was armed protesters in Maidan Square seizing government buildings and demanding a change of government and constitution. US and European leaders championed the “masked militants” and denounced the elected government for its crackdown, just as they now back the unelected government’s use of force against rebels occupying police stations and town halls in cities such as Slavyansk and Donetsk.

“America is with you,” Senator John McCain told demonstrators then, standing shoulder to shoulder with the leader of the far-right Svoboda party as the US ambassador haggled with the state department over who would make up the new Ukrainian government.

When the Ukrainian president was replaced by a US-selected administration, in an entirely unconstitutional takeover, politicians such as William Hague brazenly misled parliament about the legality of what had taken place: the imposition of a pro-western government on Russia’s most neuralgic and politically divided neighbour.

Putin bit back, taking a leaf out of the US street-protest playbook – even though, as in Kiev, the protests that spread from Crimea to eastern Ukraine evidently have mass support. But what had been a glorious cry for freedom in Kiev became infiltration and insatiable aggression in Sevastopol and Luhansk.

After Crimeans voted overwhelmingly to join Russia, the bulk of the western media abandoned any hint of even-handed coverage. So Putin is now routinely compared to Hitler, while the role of the fascistic right on the streets and in the new Ukrainian regime has been airbrushed out of most reporting as Putinist propaganda.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Just Say No to the New Forever War | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on January 18, 2023

The only way this was ever going to end, outside of escalation to a war between Russia and NATO and the likely end of human civilization, was through a negotiated settlement. It seems preferable that any division be done with a pen rather than a gun.

A recent comment on RonPaul’s Liberty Report-US has spent well in excess of Russia’s annual military budget on Ukraine.

https://mises.org/wire/just-say-no-new-forever-war

Joseph Solis-Mullen

Whenever asked about whether the US will change its policy regarding the conflict in Ukraine, to start pushing for Kyiv to enter negotiations rather than apparently providing as much money and as many weapons as they ask for, the Biden administration’s refrain has been a consistent variation of “We’re going to keep doing what we’re doing as long as it takes.”

As long as it takes for what?

For Ukraine to “win” its war against Russia, taking back all land occupied or annexed by Russia since 2014.

While it isn’t clear this is possible, and even less clear that pursuing such a maximalist outcome is in the American national interest, Joe Biden and his administration officials continually play dumb at the notion they could end the war, or they feign offense at the suggestion that the decision isn’t one entirely up to the Ukrainians, a decision the Biden administration cannot and should not in any way influence—it was the Ukrainians, after all, who elected Volodymyr Zelenskyy on a war platform.

Except, of course, that he was voted in on a peace platform.

As is now openly acknowledged, instead of then backing Zelenskyy when he tried to get the ultranationalists in the eastern part of Ukraine to submit to central authority and agree to elections per the Steinmeier Formula to implement Minsk II, as negotiated by the governments of Ukraine, Russia, France, and Germany, the Trump administration shrugged and told Zelenskyy to take a hike. The frontline ultranationalists who told Zelenskyy to go to hell—those are the guys the US government has been working with since 2014 and arming with heavy weapons since 2017.

Not that all the weapons are getting to them, as no one was surprised to find out—nor much of the money for that matter. The situation has gotten so unacceptable that the Washington Post, while it still cheers the hurried passage of every new appropriation earmarked for Ukraine, has dared to openly question where all the guns and money that aren’t going to Ukraine are going. CBS released an entire documentary, which was then almost immediately partially retracted under pressure, casting a critical eye on the policy, which is corporate media speak for “This is a huge problem!”

Rather than halting or slowing the process in response to these justified objections, the Pentagon went ahead in October and put US troops in Ukraine to supervise.

Um. What?

But while the deaths pile up and the stalemate continues, Americans should keep in mind that this is all part of the plan: to get other people killed so the US government can weaken Russia and intimidate China. At least, that is what they think the plan is doing. It is hard to say for sure. Russia will be economically and technologically less robust over the long term, and no one likes running afoul of the US Treasury, but it obviously seems to push Russia and China closer together. Was that part of the plan? If so, was it a good plan?

Other than finally admitting what we already knew, which was that flushing weapons down a black hole half a world away in one of the most corrupt countries in the industrialized world was a bad idea, the so-called Fourth Estate really has been failing abysmally. Though predictable, the corporate press has never met a war it doesn’t love; the copy the Wall Street Journal and Washington Post have been publishing is naked war porn: daydreams about the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) blowing up the Russian ships blockading Odessa or about seizing the advantage from China and militarizing, or rather further militarizing, the Taiwan Strait in order to show Beijing that Uncle Sam isn’t going to be intimidated.

Because, you know, that’s how the Cuban Missile Crisis was resolved without blowing up the world.

Yikes.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

The U.S. Will Have Given Ukraine OVER TWO TIMES The Entire Military Budget of Russia!

Posted by M. C. on December 22, 2022

The Ron Paul Liberty Report

https://rumble.com/v21ryyg-the-u.s.-will-have-given-ukraine-over-two-times-the-entire-military-budget-.html

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

What If Someday Russia and/or China Say “We Have A Gold Backed Currency. Let’s Do Business”

Posted by M. C. on December 12, 2022

The Ron Paul Liberty Report

https://rumble.com/v1zu2dg-what-if-someday-russia-andor-china-say-we-have-a-gold-backed-currency.-lets.html

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Americans Dumbed Down on Russia – Antiwar.com Original

Posted by M. C. on December 6, 2022

Humorist Will Rogers had it right:

“The problem ain’t what people know. It’s what people know that ain’t so; that’s the problem.”

Why are some of you readers just now learning about this – five years after that testimony? Short answer: Adam Schiff (D, CA), chair of the House Intelligence Committee was able to keep Henry’s unclassified testimony secret from Dec. 5, 2017 until May 7, 2020, when he was forced to release it.

https://original.antiwar.com/mcgovern/2022/12/04/americans-dumbed-down-on-russia/

by Ray McGovern

Five years ago today, Congress learned from sworn, horse’s-mouth testimony that there is no technical evidence that Russia (or anyone else) hacked the DNC emails showing how the DNC had stacked the deck against Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton’s rival for the Democratic nomination.

I can almost hear readers new to this website cry out in disbelief: “That cannot be. Official Washington and the media assured us that the Russians hacked those emails in order to help Trump win. And didn’t Obama throw out 35 Russian diplomats in reaction? And what about those 12 Russian intelligence agents indicted for hacking?” Were U.S. officials and media mistaken?

No, not mistaken. They were lying.

“But … but, does this mean Special Counsel Robert Mueller knew there was no concrete evidence of Russian hacking just six months into his 22-month investigation into Trump-Russia collusion?”

Get Him Under Oath

On December 5, 2017, Shawn Henry, head of the cyber security firm CrowdStrike, testified to the House Intelligence Committee that there was no technical evidence that Russia hacked the DNC emails that WikiLeaks published in July 2016. CrowdStrike had been hired by the DNC and the Clinton campaign (with the FBI’s blessing) to investigate “Russian hacking”.

Shawn Henry is a protégé of former FBI Director Robert Mueller (from 2001 to 2012), for whom Henry served as head of the Bureau’s cyber-crime investigations unit before he went to CrowdStrike. What are the chances that Shawn Henry did not keep his former mentor, the Special Counsel, informed of this critical factoid?

Why are some of you readers just now learning about this – five years after that testimony? Short answer: Adam Schiff (D, CA), chair of the House Intelligence Committee was able to keep Henry’s unclassified testimony secret from Dec. 5, 2017 until May 7, 2020, when he was forced to release it. Schiff gave the silencer-baton to friends in the corporate media, who have now suppressed Shawn Henry’s testimony for longer than even Schiff could.

In sum, five years (and counting) after Henry’s testimony, the corporate media are still keeping viewers/listeners in the dark. Were we Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) not banned from corporate media, those interested in the “hacking” hoax could have learned what was going on by reading our Memorandum “Allegations of Hacking are Baseless”, of December 12, 2016 – a year before Shawn Henry, under oath, came clean. Henry’s confession came as no surprise to us. (Updates are available here and here.)

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

The End of Arms Control As We Know It? – by Daniel Larison

Posted by M. C. on December 6, 2022

It is one of the absurdities of international politics that arms control becomes politically toxic at the very moment when it is most needed.

https://daniellarison.substack.com/p/the-end-of-arms-control-as-we-know

Daniel Larison

Russia pulled out of talks over resuming New START inspections, and their government seems unlikely to change its position anytime soon:

Russia accused the United States on Tuesday of toxic anti-Russian behaviour that it said had prompted it to pull out of nuclear arms talks with U.S. officials in Cairo this week.

In strongly worded comments, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova also accused the United States of trying to manipulate the New START nuclear treaty to its advantage, although she said Russia was still committed to it.

Zakharova also said that Russia would not discuss New START-related matters with the U.S. as long as it is arming Ukraine. The Russian government must know that there is no chance that the U.S. will halt weapons supplies to Ukraine while the war continues, so this amounts to setting a condition for resuming talks that they know the U.S. will not accept. That makes it all but certain that verification inspections won’t be taking place for the foreseeable future. There have already been no inspections for the last three years because of the pandemic and the war, and it now seems more likely than not that the treaty will be a dead letter even before it expires in 2026. The already poor chances of negotiating a follow-on treaty to replace New START are now even worse.

Arms control is more important than it has been in decades as U.S.-Russian tensions are the worst they have been since the end of the Cold War. It is one of the absurdities of international politics that arms control becomes politically toxic at the very moment when it is most needed. The major treaties that reduced U.S. and Soviet/Russian arsenals over the last thirty years were negotiated and ratified in the waning years of the Cold War or during the post-Cold War era.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

We Shouldn’t Destroy Our Economy In The Name of Battling Russia or China

Posted by M. C. on November 23, 2022

The Ron Paul Liberty Report

Neocons, Out-hawking the democrats

https://rumble.com/v1wief0-we-shouldnt-destroy-our-economy-in-the-name-of-battling-russia-or-china.html

Be seeing you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »