Some time after the Crimea, by the will of the Black Sea peninsula people, returned back to the bosom of Russia, analysts – the upholders of war – predicted the inevitable increase in Mr. Putin’s appetite to take over the countries, which used to be the backbone of the former Warsaw Pact. Some analysts automatically, aiming to intimidate ordinary people even predicted a nuclear strike on Manhattan. Whether such speculations have any grounds?
Putin certainly had to declare that “the collapse of the Soviet Union was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the XX century.” Hence the conclusion is that he wanted to restore it. But this is not so. Also, he had to say that “those who have no regrets about the collapse of the Soviet Union are heartless, and those who would like to restore it are mindless.” This phrase speaks a lot about the outlook of a pragmatic person, who knows well what the is doing.
After WWII Russia adopted a defense military doctrine. This means that the country responds only when it senses a threat to its geostrategic interests directly, when attacked “in its own backyard.” Ukraine is an important element in its defense system, as well as Canada and Mexico for the United States. American strategist Zbigniew Brzezinski, trusted advisor on foreign policy to many American presidents, including the current host of the White House, confirmed this, saying in his book “The Grand Chessboard” that Ukraine’s withdrawal from Russia’s orbit will significantly weaken the latter. «Without Ukraine», – he adds, «the dream of restoring the Russian empire is unrealizable.
“Annexation” of the Crimea, which was Russain for the past three centuries, and was integrated into the Republic of Ukraine only by the whim of Communist Party General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev in 1954, has recently become the subject of heated debates. Putin or any other responsible Russian leader would have done everything facing pure hostility of the new rulers in Kiev which doesn’t bode well for the future of Russian naval bases on the Black Sea, giving access to the Mediterranean Sea and allowing to look after Turkey, the centuries-old enemy – to return the Crimea to Russian Federation. Any Russian statesman, obliging for the future of his country, could not accept NATO base in the Crimea, thus revealing the southern borders of Russia.
Bloodless reunion of the Crimea doesn’t indicate Mr.Putin’s desire to capture all the former Warsaw Pact countries. It is curious that Crimean people made their choice in favor of Russia, not only because of ethnocentristic reasons, but also for economic purposes – the Russian economy is feeling much better than West European, which is on the verge of bankruptcy.
Crimean people would not make such a choice 20 years ago. And those who want to make people believe that Mr.Putin intends to force hostile takeover of former Soviet bloc countries, starting with the “annexation” of the Crimea, are well aware that this is not so. These conclusions are nothing more than an attempt to influence on short-sighted people. The main cause of war is still the economy. Wars are usually unleashed during the economic downturns and aim to capture a market share.
Russia, due to Mr.Putin’s coming to power 14 years ago – who took control of a weak country on the brink of economic collapse, where oligarchs were dictating laws, today is completely rebuilt. Therefore, the country can’t afford war. It’s not ready for this. If Russia accepts war, it will quickly lose its stabilizing airbag of sovereign funds in amount of $165 billion. Russian army, according to many experts, has flaws in the system of conventional arms. But, from the point of having a nuclear arsenal and delivery, Russia can lead their game against the West. We must recognize the undisputed world leadership of Moscow in their air defense systems , the backbone of which are unsurpassed complexes S300 and S400, able to destroy aircraft-carriers and their cruise missiles. War is not an improvisation. War has to be prepared for.
Russia is a country whose economy depends on oil and gas exports, whose reserves are the largest in the world, as well as from the sale of weapons (helicopters, tanks, fighter aircrafts, missiles). Its economy is not as diversified as Chinese or American, and is characterized by the underdevelopment of civil technologies and infancy in nano- technological potential. Russian exports of gas and oil for 80% and 70% are focused on Western Europe. Economic growth depends on the sales of gas to the European markets, where are the main pipelines. Europe can’t set an affair to the economic sanctions, in ground of its dependence on Russian energy resources and capital. Russian and European economies are interrelated. Russia needs Europe just as Europe needs Russia. But the US urging EU for the economic sanctions remain safe. Such an alignment is quite good for America. Turbulence in European financial markets, based on speculations over the war, helps funds to flow on Wall street, which allows the US to finance its mammoth budget deficit. In case of economic sanctions Washington will also get access to European markets for its shale gas, which promises a good profit. Thus, Europe will fall into the direct energy dependence on the US, and will lose Russian capital.
Provocation against Russia is not a gesture of good will to Europeans from America. Thus the US is destroying the imperial dream of an independent development of Europe. The sarcastic quotation of Victoria Nuland – «Fuck the Europe», is a vivid example. New Italian Foreign Minister Ms. Federica Mogerini, realizing it, said that Europe should be very balanced in the issue of economic sanctions, as it will lead to negative consequences for the European Union itself. The politician in her interview to Italian newspaper «Corriere Della Sera» indicates that “the possibility of political and diplomatic solution to the crisis in Ukraine exists.”
Imposing severe sanctions is the shortest way to war. Russia will be forced to break out from the prison circle, which it is currently imposed, to deploy its most mortal weapons. Exactly in this situation the possibility of nuclear war increases. The main risk lies on ordinary citizens, while the rich financial fraternity from both sides is rubbing its hands in their bunkers anticipating a great economic growth on the ruins of war.
At this stage, Russia is not a threat. It will become it only when oppressed in their own defensive fortifications. It would be right to give neutral status to Ukraine, making it a bridge between Europe and Russia, which would lead to detente.
Francois SERANT, agravox.fr