Crimea: The End of the Line for the American Empire S.J. Kowalski, March 25, 2014
The recent Crimean fiasco has changed the geo-political landscape. It is now official – the US is no longer the lone superpower. The world is now officially multi-polar and the US is only one global power along with Russia and China. Why does the Crimean fiasco demonstrate that the US is no longer the sole superpower? It is quite simple: the US does not have the “guts” to engage Russia in a war. The US Ukraine plan had the following objectives: kick the Russians out of the Sevastopol naval base; install missiles directed towards Russia; install an anti-missile defense system to support a nuclear first strike against Russia; and to steal whatever wealth that Ukraine has. The US organized coup of February 21, was executed for these reasons. Immediately after the coup, Russia decisively took control of Crimea and, by so doing, nullified all of the US’s military objectives vis-à-vis Ukraine. In response, what did the US do? It sat with its thumb in its mouth and continued gazing at its navel. If the US were indeed the world’s lone superpower, as it ceaselessly trumpets, it would at that point have massively confronted Russia militarily. It did not; its so-called Full Spectrum Dominance is nothing but an empty threat. The United States does not have the “guts” to militarily confront Russia. In 19th and 20th century European history no country has been able to control Europe without, at the same time, being a military powerhouse.
The presidents of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus signed the Belazvezha Accords on December 8,1991 the effect of which dissolved the Soviet Union. From this point on, the United States stole Russian wealth and extended NATO to its borders. Despite numerous US assurances to Gorbachev, NATO was extended into the Baltic states, and to Lithuania, and Poland. Numerous attempts to extend NATO into the Ukraine and Georgia were pushed back by Russia. The capstone of the US’s theft of Russian wealth was to be the 2003 proposed sale of Yukos, Russia’s leading oil producer to ChevronTexaco, by Mikhail Khodorkovsky, but by this time Vladimir Putin was installed as President and stopped the sale. Later, Yukos assets were sold to oil companies owned by the Russian government. Essentially, Yukos was nationalized. This was the beginning of Russia’s pushback to the US’s imperialistic objectives, and was also the beginning of the West’s hatred of Vladimir Putin. The United States lost its opportunity to control a large portion of Russia’s vast oil wealth.
It is clear, that the minimum objective of the United States and NATO is to encircle Russia with offensive weapons and forces. Its maximum objective likely is to destroy Russia. At the 43rd Munich Conference on Security Policy, Vladimir Putin remarked as follows:
“I think it is obvious that NATO expansion does not have any relation with the modernisation of the Alliance itself or with ensuring security in Europe. On the contrary, it represents a serious provocation that reduces the level of mutual trust. And we have the right to ask: against whom is this expansion intended? And what happened to the assurances our western partners made after the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact? Where are those declarations today? No one even remembers them. But I will allow myself to remind this audience what was said. I would like to quote the speech of NATO General Secretary Mr. Woerner in Brussels on 17 May 1990. He said at the time that: “the fact that we are ready not to place a NATO army outside of German territory gives the Soviet Union a firm security guarantee”. Where are these guarantees?”
Nothing has changed. The drive to enfeeble and/or destroy Russia has continued. The present Ukraine crisis is the latest manifestation of the West’s provocation of Russia. But, unfortunately for the West, the Ukraine provocation turned into a massive “cock-up”. The plan for the Ukraine coup was deeply flawed; it was implemented by a motley crew of EU and US incompetents; and, the final result was Vladimir Putin’s successful integration of Crimea into Russia.
Since the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union, the objective of the United States has been to control Russia along with its previous control of the European Union. In the case of Russia, the United States will not succeed. Neither does it have the requisite military machine, nor does it have the requisite “guts”. The last country that came very close to controlling Europe was Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. Adolf Hitler had the necessary “guts” to challenge the Soviet Union, and almost succeeded. Unfortunately for Hitler, he was opposed by Joseph Stalin and Marshall of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov each having at least the “guts” of Hitler. Stalin and Zhukov liberated Europe by defeating Hitler and his Third Reich. Since Vladimir Putin has the “guts” of Stalin and Zhukov, and since neither the United States nor the European Union have the same “guts” as Adolf Hitler, the US and the EU will never have the capability to control Europe, and never will. Prior to the Crimean vote, Russia placed troops along Ukraine’s borders in preparation for any NATO military action aimed at Russia. Also, on the Friday prior to the Crimean vote, Russia sent four strategic bombers on 24-hour Arctic patrol. Putin, in effect, told the West that Russia is prepared to respond to any type of military provocation. Shortly thereafter, the West announced that no military action will be taken vis-à-vis the Ukraine.
Quo vadis? Whither goest thou? In an interview on March 30, 2014, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reiterated what Russia’s bottom-line is:
“I confirmed the validity of the proposal we made a while ago, pertaining to the necessity to implement all of the issues registered in the Agreement of the 21 February and signed by Yanukovich, Yatsenyuk, Tyagnibok, Klitchko and Foreign Ministers of France, Germany and Poland. First and foremost, order has to be restored in all cities, all illegal weapons must be surrendered, all buildings that have been taken over illegally must be released, all barriers from streets and squares must be removed, and there must be no more “Maidans” or “mini-Maidans.”
Once these obvious steps aimed at restoring normal law and order are undertaken, the constitutional reform process should be started immediately, which is something that has also been captured in the Agreement of the February 21. We are convinced that the success of this reform can only be ensured by participation of all political forces and movements representing all areas and regions without exception, and each of them must have an equal decision-making opportunity within the framework of these negotiations.
We are convinced that it would be impossible to work out solutions to all of Ukraine’s problems without a unanimous agreement on the introduction of the federal form of government in Ukraine. Each region needs to have the opportunity to elect directly its local authorities, the executive branch and the governors, and to have all the rights and needs of its citizens satisfied across all spheres, including economy, finances, culture, language, social activities or the right for friendly relations and travel to neighboring states, be it Poland, Lithuania or Russia.
We know from experience that the unitary state does not work in Ukraine. After every presidential election they change the Constitution: first they give more power to the president, then to the parliament, after that to the government. This merry-go-round cannot last for long. Federalization is a way to make all the regions feel comfortable, so that every region will know that its rights are being respected. And at the national level, they will have certain things in common, like defense, foreign policy, judiciary. We would be willing to do that – I mean guarantees that external players would offer to Ukraine after it implements these reforms.”
For Russia, the only acceptable solution for the Ukraine is federalism and with foreign policy unattached to either the West or Russia – a Finlandization of the Ukraine. The United States is slowly and reluctantly moving to accept Russia’s Ukraine position. In the meantime, the United States and the EU “own” the Ukraine that they shattered, and Russia is prepared to out-wait the West. Pepe Escobar stated all of this succinctly in his March 20, 2014 post in the Asia Times entitled How Crimea plays in Beijing: “Meanwhile, the Western dogs bark, and the Sino- Russian caravan passes.”