Thursday 25th of July 2024

never seen greater irresponsibility than Europe getting involved in the yuckrainian conflict....

BUDAPEST (Sputnik) - Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Sunday that he had never seen greater irresponsibility than Europe getting involved in the conflict in Ukraine without calculating what it would cost.

"Europe is becoming so involved in the war that it does not even have an estimate of the scale of the costs and means necessary to achieve its military objective. I have never seen anything more irresponsible in my life," Orban said in an interview with the Patriota YouTube channel.

He added that, in his opinion, NATO wanted to become a party to the conflict in Ukraine and "the chances that the alliance can be kept from doing so are limited."

Budapest is against having decisions on the service of Hungarian citizens made "in Brussels or Germany," Orban emphasized.



"We don't want anyone else to be able to make decisions about conscription and sending our young men of draft age anywhere. We have to forget about a European army with compulsory conscription, this is a crazy idea," the prime minister stressed.


Earlier in May, Manfred Weber, the leader of the European People's Party, the largest one in the European Parliament, suggested reinstating compulsory military service across the entire European Union.



If Weber's idea was implemented, "Hungarian families would be told from Brussels or Germany that their children would be compulsorily conscripted into the European army and told where they would go," Orban added.



In the years to come, current events may be seen as a prelude to World War III or even its first episode if Brussels' militarism is not countered, the Hungarian prime minister warned.



“Perhaps in 10 years the current processes will be called a prelude to World War III. It cannot be ruled out that if things go badly and we fail to control the military psychosis developed in Brussels, the history of these years will also be an episode of the first years of the big world war,” Orban said in an interview with the YouTube channel Patrióta.


Although European politicians see nuclear weapons as a deterrent, unforeseen worst-case scenarios could come to life, the Hungarian prime minister emphasized.



“In my opinion, European politicians think of the nuclear bomb as a tactical deterrence tool and not as something that should really be used, but what they don't consider at the beginning of a war can still happen at the end, thus worst-case scenarios can come to life,” Orban explained.


Previously, Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski said in an interview with The Guardian newspaper that the United States threatened Moscow with the “destruction” of Russian forces in the special military operation zone if Russia uses nuclear weapons in Ukraine.

Deputy chairman of the Russian Security Council Dmitriy Medvedev said Poland should understand that an American strike on Russian troops would mean the beginning of a world war.



John Miles

All materials

As Kiev’s allies appear set to escalate tensions with Russia once again, controversy is deepening over governments’ obsession with the Ukraine proxy war to the exclusion of domestic concerns.

The West faces an ongoing crisis of political legitimacy, with approval ratings among the G7 countries ranging from 44% for Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni to a mere 20% for German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

The situation is particularly dire in the United States as the country enters another presidential election season featuring two major party candidates with underwater approval ratings. Three-fourths of Americans believe the country is headed in the wrong direction, and societal institutions from Congress to the courts are broadly viewed with distrust.


Given such grim political and cultural indicators, will leaders seek global conflict to distract from their own failings? That’s the fear of author Jeremy Kuzmarov, who appeared on Sputnik’s Fault Lines program Friday to discuss the increasing desperation of the Western ruling class as the US-backed Ukraine puppet state nears collapse.

“These leaders seem to want a world war,” said Kuzmarov, the managing editor of Covert Action magazine. “Maybe that is what they want. I mean, they’re losing, they’ve lost legitimacy as far as governing at home. My feeling is that this is a strategy, that they’re provoking conflicts abroad to divert the attention of the public from their misrule at home and corruption.”


The tenor of political debate throughout the West has become increasingly contentious over issues such as immigration and the economy, with insurgent candidates rising to the fore to challenge establishment parties.

Increasingly, support for the Ukraine proxy war is seen as connected to such domestic concerns. In Germany, sanctions on Russian energy have cratered economic growth while the lifting of tariffs on Ukrainian food imports has led to farmers’ protests throughout the continent.

Moscow’s success on the battlefield has caused “desperation” on the part of the United States and NATO, noted host Jamarl Thomas. US President Joe Biden has repeatedly breached his own self-imposed “red lines,” ultimately providing Ukraine with Western weaponry such as ATACMS missiles after previously refusing to do so. Now Secretary of State Antonoy Blinken is publicly urging Biden to allow Kiev to use US armaments to strike targets within Russian territory.


But deepened commitment to the proxy war – and the prospect of NATO troops eventually being deployed to the battlefield – risks further controversy.

“The Russians are winning and Ukraine is running out of ammunition and personnel,” noted Kuzmarov. “You might start to see protests like in the Vietnam era if [there were] American boots on the ground. I think the public would really start to question more what’s going on.”


“So, I don’t know if they could do that politically unless they resort to more and more authoritarian standards at home, which seems to be what’s going on. But, again, you’re going to sustain a domestic political backlash. So, I think they’re in trouble, and that’s why we see these reckless threats and very reckless behavior. And I hope it doesn’t provoke a third world war, which is where it could be leading.”







The Brink of Dissolution: Neurosis in the West as the Levee Breaks



The paradox is that Team Biden – wholly inadvertently – is midwifing the birth of a “new world.” It is doing so by dint of its crude opposition to parturition. The more the western élites push against the birthing – through “saving Zionism”; “saving European Ukraine” and by crushing dissent – perversely they accelerate the foundering of Leviathan.

President Xi’s double farewell hug for President Putin following their 16-17 May summit nonetheless sealed the birth – even the New York Times, with customary self-absorption, termed the warm embrace by Xi as “defiance of the West.”

The root of the coming dissolution stems precisely from the shortcoming that the NY Times headline encapsulates in its disdainful labelling of the seismic shift as base anti-westernism.

It reflects the myopia of not wanting to see or hear that which stands so plainly in clear sight before one: If it were simply “anti-West” – nothing more than negation of negation – then the criticism would have some justification. Yet, it is not mere antithesis.

Rather, the near 8,000-word joint China-Russia statement evokes the very elemental laws of nature itself in sketching the West’s usurpation of the fundamental principles of humanity, reality, and order – a critique which maddens the collective West.

David Brooks, the US author who coined the term BoBos (Bohemian Bourgeoisie i.e. the metro-élites) to chart the rise of wokeism, now asserts that “liberalism” (whatever that means today) “is ailing” and in retreat. The classic “liberal” zeitgeist lay upon a foundation of commitments and moral obligations that precede choice – our obligations to our families, to our communities and nations, to our ancestors and descendants, to God or some set of transcendent truths.

It tends to the tepid and uninspiring, Brooks says; “It avoids the big questions like: Why are we here? What is the meaning to it all? It nurtures rather, the gentle bourgeois virtues like kindness and decency – but not, as Lefebvre allows some of the loftier virtues, like bravery, loyalty, piety and self-sacrificial love.”

To be clear, Brooks, in a separate piece, argues that by putting so much emphasis on individual choice, pure liberalism attenuates social bonds: In a purely liberal ethos, an invisible question lurks behind every relationship: Is this person good for me? Every social connection becomes temporary and contingent. When societies become liberal all the way down, they neglect (as quoted by Brooks) Victor Frankl’s core truth that “Man’s search for meaning is the primary motivation in his life.”

The joint Xi-Putin statement therefore is not just a detailed work-plan for a BRICS future (though it is indeed a very comprehensive work plan for the BRICS summit in October). Russia and China rather have put forward a dynamic vision of concrete principles as pillars for a new society in the post-Western future.

By playing straight into the primordial sources of meaning that are deeper than individual preference – faith, family, soil and flag – Russia and China have picked up the pieces and born-up the mantle of the Bandung Non-Aligned Movement through promoting the right of national self-determination and an end to centuries old systems of exploitation.

Yet how and why can the West be said to be accelerating its own dissolution?

The NY Times gives the clue to the ”why”: The old “Anglo” obsession with a defiant Russia that the West has never been able to bend to their will. And now, Russia and China have signed a joint statement somewhat similar to the “no limits” friendship declared in February 2022 but reaching further.

It portrays their relationship as “superior to political and military alliances of the Cold War era. Friendship between the two States has no limits, there are no ‘forbidden’ areas of cooperation … .”

Put starkly, this breaches the long-standing western rule of triangulation: the US must stand with either the one, Russia or China, against the other; but never should China and Russia be permitted to band together versus the US! – a doctrine sanctified in western “canon law” since Mackinder’s time in the 19th Century.

Yet, that “two versus one” is precisely what Team Biden inadvertently have “done.”

What then, constitutes the “how”?

The problem with the western solutions to any geo-political problem is that they invariably comprise more of the same.

The combination of this deep disdain for Russia – subsumed into the undercurrent fear of Russia as a putative geo-strategic competitor – invites a western recourse to repeating the same triangulation approach, without due reflection on whether circumstances have changed, or not. This is the case here and now – making for a “clear and present” risk of unintended and damaging escalation: A prospect that might midwife the very thing that the West most fears – a loss of control, spiralling the system down into freefall.

The Mistake:

Ray McGovern, a former US Presidential briefer, has chronicled how as “Biden took office in 2021, his advisers assured him that he could play on Russia’s fear (sic) of China – and drive a wedge between them. This represents the “mother of all errors” of judgement, because it brings about the circumstances in which the western ‘Order’ may dissolve.”

“This [presumption of Russian weakness] became embarrassingly clear when Biden said to Putin during their Geneva summit … let me ask a rhetorical question: ‘You got a multi-thousand-mile border with China. China is seeking to be the most powerful economy in the world and the largest and the most powerful military in the world.'”

McGovern observes that this meeting gave Putin clear confirmation that Biden and his advisers were stuck in a woefully outdated appraisal of Russia-China relations.

Here is the bizarre way Biden described his approach to Putin on China: At the airport after the summit, Biden’s aides did their best to whisk him onto the plane but failed to stop him from sharing more “wisdom” on China: “Russia is in a very, very difficult spot right now. They are being squeezed by China.”

“Yes”: More of the same! Biden was trying, on the advice of his experts, to insert the ubiquitous western “wedge” between Russia and an “BIG” China.

After these remarks, Putin and Xi spent the rest of 2021 trying to disabuse Biden of the “China squeeze” meme: This mutual effort culminated in the Xi-Putin “no limits” friendship summit of that year. If the advisers had been paying attention however, they would have threaded a long history of Russo-Chinese rapprochement. But no, they were ideologically frozen in the view that the two were destined to be eternal enemies.

Doubling Down on the Mistake. It gets worse:

Then, in a 30 December 2021 telephone conversation, Biden assured Putin that “Washington had no intention of deploying offensive strike weapons in Ukraine.” However, Foreign Minister Lavrov has revealed that when he met Blinken in Geneva in January 2022, the US Secretary of State pretended he had not heard of Biden’s undertaking to Putin on 30 December 2021. Rather, Blinken insisted that US medium-range missiles could be deployed in Ukraine, and that the US might be willing to consider limiting their number.

Making An Egregious Mistake Worse

In August 2019, when the US withdrew from the treaty banning intermediate-range missiles in Europe, the US had already deployed missiles in Romania and Poland (saying their purpose was ostensibly “to defend against Iran”). However, the tubes installed are deliberately configured to accommodate nuclear warhead equipped, cruise and ballistic missiles; but here is the rub: it is not possible to determine which missile is loaded, as the tubes have lids to them. The time for these missiles to reach Moscow would be 9 minutes from Poland, and 10 from Romania.

But if, as Blinken threatened, missiles might be installed in Ukraine, it would drop to only 7 minutes (and were it to be a hypersonic missile, which the US does not yet possess, it would be a mere 2-3 minutes)

Just for clarity, this (i.e. Ukraine) is Russia’s existential war which it will fight, no matter what it takes. Beijing is fully aware of the high stakes involved for Russia (and ultimately for China, too)

The Consequences to relying on the “Same Tactics Again, and Again” Threats and Pressure.

On 18 May in Moscow, in the wake of the latest Xi-Putin summit – as MK Bhadrakumar notes – Lavrov predicted an escalation in western weapon supplies to Ukraine, reflecting not only the Biden”s election need to be seen “facing down Russia, but also the reality that “the acute phase of the military-political confrontation with the West” will continue, in “full swing.”

The western thought processes, Lavrov said, are veering round dangerously to “the contours of the formation of a European military alliance – with a nuclear component.” Lavrov lamented that “they have made a choice in favour of a showdown on the battlefield: We are ready for this.” “The agenda to inflict a strategic defeat on Russia militarily and otherwise – is pure fantasy and it will be resolutely countered.”

European military inadequacy explains, presumably, the mooted notion to add a nuclear component.

Put plainly, with the US unable to exit or to moderate its determination to preserve its hegemony, Lavrov sees the prospect for increased western weapons provision for Ukraine. The discourse of military escalation is in fashion in Europe (of that there is no doubt); but both in the Middle East and Ukraine, western policy is in deep trouble. There must be doubts whether the West has either the political will, or the internal unity, to pursue this aggressive course. Dragging wars are not traditionally thought to be “voter friendly” when campaigning reaches its peak.

from Strategic Culture Foundation.