terça-feira, 7 de dezembro de 2004

Ucrania & The new cold war

PS: UE, EUA, Russia e China parecem estar agora condenados a entrar no mesmo jogo geo-estratégico entre Impérios que precedeu a Grande Guerra e onde todos foram prejudicados. Antes eram os recursos inexplorados, agora, é a ideia que empurrar a democracia (ou uma noção de democracia) por revoluções ou pressões geo-estratégicas e até militares, é do interesse do Ocidente (para uns) ou um bem em si mesmo (idealistas de esquerda e agora também à direita). E não existe sentimento de prudência nem história que pare esta tendência. O mais provável é um dia virmos a ficar todos a perder novamente.

"It isn't just the Islamic world that the promoters of a "war of civilizations" are targeting: Russia, too, is in the sights of the War Party, as I have pointed out in this space before. As the epicenter of the Orthodox Christian Slavic civilization, Russia finds itself under attack on several fronts: not only in the Ukraine but also in Chechnya, where American neoconservatives have taken up the cause of al-Qaeda-linked "freedom fighters" and denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin as an aspiring "dictator."

The West turned against Putin the moment he moved against the Russian "oligarchs" – former Communist party insiders who used their influence in the waning Soviet order to loot "collectively-owned" state industries, including major industrial concerns and infrastructure, stripping the place bare and secreting their ill-gotten gains abroad. That this was done under the rubric of "privatization" defeated the idea of free market liberalism in Russia, and paved the way for the rise of Putin, who was lifted up into the seat of power on the strength of a wave of resentment against the oligarchs' massive theft.

The oligarchs, however, who had by this time legitimized their fortunes by laundering the stolen money through investment in new enterprises, fought back, and were soon joined by their Western allies and paid publicity agents.

In the West, the reaction to Putin's new assertiveness was immediate: a campaign of the sort that preceded the demonization and destruction of Saddam Hussein and Manuel Noriega immediately commenced in the Western media, with neoconservatives of Krauthammer's ilk leading the charge. George W. Bush echoed their war cries, albeit faintly, when he voiced his "concerns" about the future of "democracy" in Russia: simultaneously, an open "letter of the 100" to Putin was sponsored by the Project for a New American Century and was signed by an agglomeration of the aggrieved, from militant neocons to assorted "progressives" (i.e. warmongers of a leftish hue). The letter basically condemned Putin and called for a new cold war confrontation with the "threat" to democracy emanating from the Kremlin.
Krauthammer, the Clausewitz and the Napoleon of the armchair generals, can't help but gloat:

You almost have to feel sorry for the Russians. (I stress almost.) In the course of one generation, they have lost one of the greatest empires in history: first their Third World dependencies, stretching at one point from Nicaragua to Angola to Indochina; then their East European outer empire, now swallowed by NATO and the European Union; and then their inner empire of Soviet republics.

"The Muslim '-stans' are slowly drifting out of reach. The Baltic republics are already in NATO. The Transcaucasian region is unstable and bloody. All Russia has left are the Slavic republics. Belarus is effectively a Russian colony. But the great prize is Ukraine, for reasons of strategy (Crimea), history (Kiev is considered by Russians to be the cradle of Slavic civilization) and identity (the eastern part is Russian Orthodox and Russian-speaking)

This is great news for those civilizational warriors who want to take on Eastern Orthodoxy, as well as Islam
Putin is right to fear NATO expansion. Perhaps he recalls the assurances of U.S. Secretary of State James Baker and German foreign minister Hans Dietrich Genscher at a high level meeting in Moscow on the subject of German reunification, cited by Russia scholar Susan Eisenhower:

"[Genscher] promoted a 'no expansion of NATO' concept, an idea that Baker, too, had advanced. It was at the February meeting that the key words were spoken, words that are still a source of debate. If a unified Germany was anchored in NATO, Secretary Baker said to Gorbachev, 'NATO's jurisdiction or forces would not move eastward.'

"Apparently, Gorbachev was receptive to that assurance and emphasized that 'any extension of the zone of NATO is unacceptable.'

"'I agree,' Baker said. "

Oh well. So much for that agreement.

Now that the West is penetrating Ukraine, and talking openly about the inability of Eastern countries – including Russia – to rise to the level of machine politics in Chicago, or Brooklyn, New York, Putin has reason to regret Gorbachev's decision, or at least remember it in anger: Georgia, too, is slated for NATO membership, and the rebellious Russian-speaking semi-autonomous republics, such as Abkhazia, and Ossetia, are trouble spots just begging for NATO intervention – as would the eastern region of Ukraine, which threatens to secede if the Yushchenko forces triumph.

The United States, via the National Endowment for Democracy, has poured millions into the funding, training, and logistics of the Yushchenko organization that has managed to shut down Kiev and hold the government hostage – and they expect their investment to pay off in the military, political, and economic isolation of Russia.

Putin is hated by Western elites, not because he aspires to be a dictator, but because he is defiant in the face of this all-out assault. He destroyed the power of the Russian oligarchs, and aligned himself with the wrong oligarchical faction in Ukraine: Ms. Timoshenko, the former Ukrainian "gas princess," and her allies will profit enormously from an alliance with the West. The Odessa-Brody oil pipeline will start flowing, along with plenty of U.S. government subsidies for this uneconomic project."
Justin Raimundo

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