The language used in this article is harsh to drive home what needs to be conveyed because a serious rethink is required at international levels.
The swamp in which America is stuck today is of its own making. The narrative that the Russian invasion justifies post-Cold War growth of NATO and its eastward expansion is crap. The reality is the opposite, as reasoned and theorized by many American strategists, diplomats, and scholars, including Kissinger, George Kennan, and John Joseph Mearsheimer; saying expanding NATO will be a massive folly and Ukraine should remain neutral. Were they all ‘Idiots’ and American politicians and policymakers ‘Smartasses’? Do you really feel that William Joseph Burns, current Director CIA, who after serving as Ambassador of the US to the Russian Federation from 2005 to 2008 had strongly recommended that US-NATO should leave Ukraine a neutral country, is a fool? Aren’t the smartasses out of sync with realities?
No doubt expansion of NATO enabled America to bomb, invade and ravage multiple countries with impunity. This gave a high that the US can maraud and rule the world according to American laws. Afghanistan was a shame, abandoning $92 billion worth of weaponry to the Taliban (terrorist organization) which brought US-NATO to its knees; all because of erratic American policies – 98,000 US troops in Afghanistan in 2011 could have subdued Taliban enough to negotiate an intra-Afghan deal.
Russia is accused of invading a “sovereign” country but what about so many sovereign countries invaded by US-NATO? Witness the cries over civil casualties and destruction in Ukraine. Putin had achieved air superiority within 24 hours of launching operations and could have flattened Ukraine to reach his objectives, but did not. Compare the above with NATO bombing Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from March 24, 1999 to June 10, 1999; bombing bridges, industrial plants, hospitals, schools, cultural monuments, private businesses military barracks, and installations, killing over 1500 including 528 civilians without UN approval. Recall 42 days continuous American bombing of sovereign Iraq before invading it on a false pretext, even lying to the US Congress?
General Wesley Clark, former Supreme Allied Commander, NATO disclosed the disruptive US policy in 2007 by saying, “While the bombing of Afghanistan had commenced, I asked a General of Joint Staff, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over to his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” (meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office) “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off with Iran.” Are these not sovereign countries? In 2015, General Michael Flynn, former head of US Defence Intelligence Agency, told a TV channel that the rise of Islamic State and Jabhat al Nusra was a “Willful Decision” of the US.
Civilian casualties in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are termed human rights violations. What about civilian massacres in Donbas over the last few years perpetuated by the joker-President Zelensky who should have been left dancing in high heels and playing the piano with pants down. But America patronized him because he was developing nuclear capability with their full knowledge, plus making ‘good use’ of the multiple US-funded bio-labs – developing bioweapons, same as with the US-funded bio-labs in Algeria and Kazakhstan?
Fake stories of Russia ‘bombing’ the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant were circulated, which Russia has secured. Russia would know the consequences of bombing a nuclear facility. On the contrary, Zelensky would have liked to bomb it to prevent its fall to Russia – just like he scuttled Ukraine’s flagship and other vessels in the Black Sea.
Western tails are on fire because Ukraine is a European country and Western Ukraine is Catholic. True, Biden has managed to rally Europe, after the anger over American withdrawal from Afghanistan leaving EU nationals stranded, by stoking Russia and out-rightly rejecting every demand made by Putin linked with existential threats to Russia. But the deliberately twisted reasoning and cries raised by the West may convince largely the ‘White Chick Brigade’, not the whole world.
Notwithstanding Joe Biden’s State of the Union address, American policymakers are pissing in their pants and Europe is worried because the Russian invasion has not stopped despite hosts of sanctions being dished out periodically. The Russian ambassador to Sweden told the media, that Moscow “doesn’t give a shit about the threat of Western sanctions over the Ukraine crisis.”
US-NATO-EU are worried about what would happen in a direct clash with Russia and if Putin decides to go beyond Ukrainian borders, especially after Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov stated that the third world war will be nuclear, but adding that Russia has no intention of using nukes. That is why NATO allies refused Zelensky’s request for a no-fly zone over Ukraine.
The Biden Administration is running around sponsoring a string of meetings – UNSC, UNGA, IAEA, UNHRC, ICJ, with Blinken touring around to garner support and Josep Borrell working on EU membership to Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova. In addition, Finland, which shares a border with Russia, is being offered NATO membership, to enable NATO troops and missile deployments in that country.
UNSC resolutions against ‘any’ P-5 country will always be vetoed, UNGA resolutions are not binding and the IAEA has said no radiation leakage in the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant. As for human rights, remember how Nikki Haley, US ambassador to the UN, had denounced the UN Human Rights Council, followed by her resignation and the US withdrawing from it in October 2017.
War crimes accusations against Russia are laughable considering the records of both the US and NATO – should cases for war crimes be raised against them too? Also, ICJ rulings in favor of the Philippines against illegal territorial claims by China were simply dumped by Beijing and America and the rest of the world had to lump it.
Since Joe Biden talked of the opioid epidemic in his address on March 1, how many American “smartasses” are on opioids? Cocooned in their shells they will not put themselves in the other’s shoes and have little understanding of geography. The book ‘A Very Stable Genius’ authored by Philip Rucker and Carol D Leonnig, details the incident when President Donald Trump left Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi flabbergasted after he told him that India and China didn’t share a border, revealing the US President’s “woefully” poor knowledge of geography?
In his address on March 1, Biden said, “Our forces will not engage in the conflict with Russia in Ukraine, “next few days, weeks and months will be hard on them (Ukraine)”, but will fight if Putin moves West of Ukraine. What a lovely way to prop up Ukraine (despite advice not to do so) and then leave them to their fate. Biden also glossed over how the sanctions will adversely affect Europe. Selling oil to Europe four times the price of Russian gas may help bring down the 40-year high inflation in the US but America cannot meet the energy requirements of Europe.
About The Author
Lt Gen. PC Katoch (Retd), PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SC is a third generation army officer who superannuated as Director General Information Systems of the Indian Army in 2009. A Special Forces officer, he participated in the 1971 Indo- Pak War, commanded an independent commando company in counter-insurgency in the Northeast, a Special Forces Battalion in Sri Lanka as part of the Indian Peace Keeping Force, a Brigade on Siachen Glacier, a Division in Ladakh and a Strike Corps in South Western Theatre. He has had his work published in leading defence and national security publications and think tanks in both India and abroad.
(This article was first published in 'Hill Post' reproduced with due persmission from the author. Views expressed are the author's own and do not reflect the editorial stance of Mission Victory India)