During a speech given on November 29, Polish Vice-Minister of National Defense (MON) Marcin Ociepa said: “The probability of a war in which we will be involved is very high. Too high for us to treat this scenario only hypothetically.” The Polish MON is allegedly planning to call up 200,000 reservists in 2023 for a few weeks’ training, but observers in Warsaw suspect this action could easily lead to a national mobilization.
Congress just passed a $45 billion assistance package for Kyiv on the way out the door for the holidays. We put this spending into context.
Q: …You see the Western neoliberal unit as driving Eurasia and most of the Global South into a separate group. Could you explain this?
MH: The split is not only geographic but above all reflects the conflict between Western neoliberalism and the traditional logic of industrial capitalism. The West has deindustrialized its economies by replacing industrial capitalism with finance capitalism, initially in an attempt to keep its wages down by moving abroad to employ foreign labor, and then to try and establish monopoly privileges and captive markets or arms (and now oil) and high-technology essentials, becoming rentier economies.
In the quarter-century since then, the antipathy between the United States and Russia – and the turmoil surrounding Johnson’s Russia List – have only increased, especially after 2014, when pro-Western demonstrators in Kyiv forced the democratically-elected pro-Moscow president of Ukraine to flee to Russia, and Russian forces occupied Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula in response. A full-scale war on Ukraine began in 2002.
Meanwhile, the lack of curiosity about JRL and its proprietor has become at least as striking as the commotion that attended its beginnings twenty-five years before. A cursory search turned up only the NY Times article and a handful of mentions on the web. I first wrote about Johnson in 2008. Granted, newspapers write about other newspapers mainly when they think they have something to gain. Still, the inattention to the one man still in the middle is emblematic of a highly-polarized war-time situation.
Greenwald explores the twisted dynamic that the corporate journalist who lie most casually and aggressively on behalf of the US Security State are those who advance most rapidly – starring The Atlantic’s editor in chief Jeffrey Goldberg and
and RussiaGate conspiracist Natasha Bertrand of CNN.
As Russian missiles and drones rain down on Ukraine, western media is once again touting the imminent appearance of another “game changer” that will turn the tide of battle, or at least stop those missiles in their tracks. The Patriot missile is dutifully deemed the “most advanced ground-based air defense system” in the U.S. arsenal and “highly effective” in media reports, which, if true, would be just as well, since it appears that at present the U.S. is prepared to send just one battery (cost:$1 billion, from Raytheon, of course.)
At this writing there will be some at least some new voices in the new Congress—incoming Senator J.D. Vance most notably—who are on record as thinking there are more important uses for American resources than pushing the Russian security establishment up against the wall in the hope that under pressure it submits. But those hoping the election would change the discussion about the Ukraine war inside the Beltway have no reason to be pleased.
We are sad to pass on the news that Fritzi Cohen died this morning. Fritzi was the longtime proprietor of the Washington, DC landmark Tabard Inn and for decades worked in the trenches as an antiwar and Pentagon reform activist. Fritzi was also a good and valued friend of the American Committee.
This past October, the Tabard played host to a panel discussion (co-hosted by ACURA and the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft) marking the 60th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The discussion, which the journalist Gareth Porter** said was the best he’d attended in almost a half-century of attending such events, kicked off with remarks by the ever-feisty, ever-fearless Fritzi who decried the collapse of diplomatic relations between the US and Russia and the senselessness of American policy toward Russia in recent decades. Some of us who knew her and had seen her over the past year did note she was clearly in a good deal of pain getting around at the event owing to what she said was a back problem (we learned today that she had cancer but told virtually no one), but that did not affect the cogency of her remarks nor the passion with which they were delivered.
She was a force, and she will be missed.
-James Carden, for the Committee
**Gareth Porter, a longtime friend of Cohen’s has sent in his thoughts on Fritzi’s passing:
Fritzi was indeed a force for change in Washington in so many ways. Not only was she the first to mount a Nader-type project to hold the Pentagon accountable for its wanton spending in the 1980s but she was the moving force behind the Washington-Moscow friendship organization that carried out the first only cultural exchange program between the two capital cities. And it was through that program that one of the leading young jazz musicians in Moscow, bassist Victor Dvoskin, first came to Washington, and then he decided to return with his new wife to stay. Frtizi then brought Victor into the Tabard for a regular Sunday night gig, which has become one of the longest-running — if not the longest — regular jazz gig in the United States. She thus created a true cultural treasure of immense value, which still continues to this day. She also made the Tabard a regular meeting place for events that opposed the militarism of the past and present, as others have pointed out.
In his new book, “The Tragedy of Ukraine: What Classical Greek Tragedy Can Teach Us about Conflict Resolution,” Petro explores the more than 150-year history of this destabilizing struggle. He also argues that the current war between Ukraine and Russia has deep roots in that internal strife, which has led to armed clashes three other times in history.
A new report from the Quincy Institute says “The United States should not seek to drive Russian influence from the southern Caucasus. It should accept that as a local great power they have an important stake in this region, and try to help craft international approaches that take this into account.”
George Kennan, former U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union called NATO expansion, “A fateful error. Why, with all the hopeful possibilities engendered by the end of the Cold War, should East-West relations become centered on the question of who would be allied with whom and, by implication, against whom in some fanciful, totally unforeseeable and most improbable future military conflict?”
The war hawks know their cynical Ukraine policy has not succeeded in driving Russia out of Ukraine. Tragically, the Ukrainians are the ones who suffer the immense cost of this foreign policy failure. Their nation is ruined for the sake and at the instigation of the globalist American empire.
It is perhaps useful to recall the series of crises between the United States and the Soviet Union that were an all-too-regular feature of those first two decades of the Cold War. Helping U.S. presidents navigate that perilous period were a number of remarkable diplomats, including Ambassador Charles ‘Chip’ Bohlen, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1957. Looking back, the period now seems to be something of a “Golden Age” of American diplomacy, at least as far as the Soviet Union was concerned. The approach taken by Bohlen and his colleagues is instructive and remains relevant to the current period of East-West confrontation.
Threats form where there is a combination of will and capability. Russia, at the time of writing, was still struggling to pacify the east of Ukraine. It has little hope of conquering Kiev or posing a real threat to central Europe. To imagine that Russian tanks will rumble through Belgian or Polish meadows, or the decrepit Russian navy will threaten the English Channel and the Atlantic is quite simply ludicrous. There is no Russian challenge to the broader European order and stability that cannot be balanced by rich European powers, if they so choose.
Michael Vlahos and Douglas Macgregor continue their discussion on the war in Ukraine from the library of the Army-Navy Club, Washington, D.C. Part 2 examines the strategic choices that have led to NATO strategic failure in Ukraine, conflict with Russia, and lays bare how deliberate deceit and denial have misled the American people.
[Former German Chancellor] Merkel admits that EU and Germany were arming Ukraine preparing it to ignore Minsk Agreements.
British Royal Marine general admits that there are plenty of his soldiers doing dirty business in Ukraine, engaged in operations too sensitive to mention.
Israeli press writes about Ukrainian soldiers going through Kherson and harassing the Jews for “collaborating with the enemies.” This charge that has been repeated by all the antisemitic regimes that ever controlled Ukrainian lands.
American top brass keeps on repeating that the purpose of the war in Ukraine is to weaken, if not incapacitate Russia.
This is not hearsay. These are actual statements and facts reported by the Western press. [Read more…] about Vladimir Golstein: Where is The Logic Here?
In the 1980s and 1990s, I was a member of the Russian studies group sponsored by the Brookings Institution. In the 1980s, members of the Reagan administration would present papers that inflated the military and economic power of the Soviet Union to justify increased U.S. defense spending. In the 1990s, members of the Clinton administration would proclaim that the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) would not threaten Russian national security. I regularly opposed these views, but the conventional wisdom even at Brookings—a so-called liberal think tank—supported both administrations and the mainstream media echoed these views.
These administrations could not have been more wrong, and it is important to know why. The Reagan administration was dealing in disinformation, using the politicized intelligence of the Central Intelligence Agency led by two ideologues—Director William Casey and Deputy Director Robert Gates. I was a Soviet analyst at the CIA in those years and testified to Gates’ deceit in his controversial confirmation hearings in 1991. My testimony contributed to the decision of a newly-elected president, Bill Clinton, to end Gates’ stewardship of the agency in 1993.
Experts say these systems are expensive, take months of training, and will not give Ukraine the full air cover they want.
Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel, in a series of interviews recently with the Spiegel and Die Zeit, admitted that the 2014 Minsk Agreement to address the Donbass situation was itself only “an attempt to buy time for Ukraine. Ukraine used this time to become stronger, as you can see today. Ukraine in 2014-2015 and Ukraine today are not the same.”
Merkel added that “it was clear for everyone” that the conflict was suspended and the problem was not resolved, “but it was exactly what gave Ukraine the priceless time.” Indeed, the Minsk Agreement was intended as a wayside station as the US pursued the agenda to introduce NATO and build up Ukraine’s military capability to eventually take on Russia.
Without this debate, there can be no understanding of what will be needed for a lasting peace, writes Mary Dejevsky