The Quest for Reason is Nearing an End
Introduction and Commentary by Karl Pomeroy
September 26, 2015
Updated September 28, 2015 (see end of post)
Does Vladimir Putin now understand what he has done?
Our efforts over the past year, along with those of many commentators from the US, Europe and Russia, to influence Kremlin and White House policies on Donbass have all come to naught. Washington remains as rigid as ever in its brash accusations of Moscow, crushing the right to self-determination sought by the Donbass people as it arms and funds their war-criminal murderers in Kiev.
Meanwhile, Vladimir Putin remains smugly indifferent to the fate of the two Republics in terms of effective government action. He has blithely permitted the Kremlin oligarchs to undermine Novorossiya, symbolically by nullifying the project and its promotors; politically by stifling the will of the leaders, shunning recognition of the young Republics, and sledge-hammering Minsk 2.0 into its ill-shaped hole with abject disdain for the cost in human terms; and militarily by sabotaging pre-Minsk 2.0 offensives and ignoring the militias’ early cries for help.
None of this is forgivable, none of it necessary, and none of it understandable.
Quemado Institute, along with many other finer voices such as Paul Craig Roberts, the Saker, Vladimir Suchan, Stephen Lendman, Enrico Ivanov, Wayne Madsen, Finian Cunningham, Eric Zeusse, Graham Phillips, Patrick Lancaster, Gleb Bazov, Boris Rozhin, Ron Paul and more, have gone figuratively overboard trying to influence US and Russian policy. Reason, logic, fact, psychoanalysis, warnings, insults, pleas and appeals to conscience — not one of these tactics has made a damned bit of difference. So lofty have these leaders become!
We’ve flooded the internet with irate rhetoric on the brutality and recklessness of American imperialism. Anti-Russian platforms have more than matched us with unfounded vilificaton of Moscow. A little less often do we see Novorossiya advocates give a cold assessment of Putin’s failings.
Would he listen if we did? Of course not. He has yachts, planes, a bimbo girlfriend, ten times the wealth of Donald Trump, no invincible wife to keep him in line, an athletic physique, an exceptional mind and plenty of charisma to burn. So what does he need us for?
Nothing. Still, our voices cry in the wilderness. In a world of little hope, he seems our only hope. Or does he?
He used to. Now even that ray of hope has grown too faint to perceive.
In the three articles below, Vladimir Suchan and Paul Craig Roberts express this dismay far better than I can:
Russia’s False Hopes
Guest Article by Paul Craig Roberts
Paug Craig Roberts
September 23, 2015
Russia so desperately desires to be part of the disreputable and collapsing West that Russia is losing its grip on reality. Despite hard lesson piled upon hard lesson, Russia cannot give up its hope of being acceptable to the West. The only way Russia can be acceptable to the West is to accept vassal status. Russia miscalculated that diplomacy could solve the crisis that Washington created in Ukraine and placed its hopes on the Minsk Agreement, which has no Western support whatsoever, neither in Kiev nor in Washington, London, and NATO.
Russia can end the Ukraine crisis by simply accepting the requests of the former Russian territories to reunite with Russia. Once the breakaway republics are again part of Russia, the crisis is over. Ukraine is not going to attack Russia. Russia doesn’t end the crisis, because Russia thinks it would be provocative and upset Europe. Actually, that is what Russia needs to do—upset Europe. Russia needs to make Europe aware that being Washington’s tool against Russia is risky and has costs for Europe.
Instead, Russia shields Europe from the costs that Washington imposes on Europe and imposes little cost on Europe for acting against Russia in Washington’s interest. Russia still supplies its declared enemies, whose air forces fly provocative flights along Russia’s borders, with the energy to put their war planes into the air.
This is the failure of diplomacy, not its success. Diplomacy cannot succeed when only one side believes in diplomacy and the other side believes in force.
Russia needs to understand that diplomacy cannot work with Washington and its NATO vassals who do not believe in diplomacy, but rely instead on force. Russia needs to understand that when Washington declares that Russia is an outlaw state that “does not act in accordance with international norms,” Washington means that Russia is not following Washington’s orders. By “international norms,” Washington means Washington’s will. Countries that are not in compliance with Washington’s will are not acting in accordance with “international norms.”
Washington and only Washington determines “international norms.” America is the “exceptional, indispensable” country. No other country has this rank.
A country with an independent foreign policy is a threat to Washington. The neoconservative Wolfowitz Doctrine makes this completely clear. The Wolfowitz Doctrine, the basis of US foreign and military policy, defines as a threat any country with sufficient power to act as a constraint on Washington’s unilateral action. The Wolfowitz Doctrine states unambiguously that any country with sufficient power to block Washington’s purposes in the world is a threat and that “our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of” any such country.
Russia, China, and Iran are in Washington’s crosshairs. Treaties and “cooperation” mean nothing. Cooperation only causes Washington’s targets to lose focus and to forget that they are targets. Russia’s foreign minister Lavrov seems to believe that now with the failure of Washington’s policy of war and destruction in the Middle East, Washington and Russia can work together to contain the ISIS jihadists in Iraq and Syria. This is a pipe dream. Russia and Washington cannot work together in Syria and Iraq, because the two governments have conflicting goals. Russia wants peace, respect for international law, and the containment of radical jihadists elements. Washington wants war, no legal constraints, and is funding radical jihadist elements in the interest of Middle East instability and overthrow of Assad in Syria. Even if Washington desired the same goals as Russia, for Washington to work with Russia would undermine the picture of Russia as a threat and enemy.
Russia, China, and Iran are the three countries that can constrain Washington’s unilateral action. Consequently, the three countries are in danger of a pre-emptive nuclear strike. If these countries are so naive as to believe that they can now work with Washington, given the failure of Washington’s 14-year old policy of coercion and violence in the Middle East, by rescuing Washington from the quagmire it created that gave rise to the Islamic State, they are deluded sitting ducks for a pre-emptive nuclear strike.
Washington created the Islamic State. Washington used these jihadists to overthrow Gaddafi in Libya and then sent them to overthrow Assad in Syria. The American neoconservatives, everyone of whom is allied with Zionist Israel, do not want any cohesive state in the Middle East capable of interfering with a “Greater Israel from the Nile to the Euphrates.”
The ISIS jihadists learned that Washington’s policy of murdering and displacing millions of Muslims in seven countries had created an anti-Western constituency for them among the peoples of the Middle East and have begun acting independently of their Washington creators.
The consequence is more chaos in the Middle East and Washington’s loss of control.
Instead of leaving Washington to suffer at the hands of its own works, Russia and Iran, the two most hated and demonized countries in the West, have rushed to rescue Washington from its Middle East follies. This is the failure of Russian and Iranian strategic thinking. Countries that cannot think strategically do not survive.
The Iranians need to understand that their treaty with Washington means nothing. Washington has never honored any treaty. Just ask the Plains Indians or the last Soviet President Gorbachev.
If the Russian government thinks that Washington’s word means anything, the Russian government is out to lunch.
Iran is well led, and Vladimir Putin has rescued Russia from US and Israeli control, but both governments continue to act as if they are taking some drug that makes them think that Washington can be a partner. These delusions are dangerous, not only to Russia and Iran, but to the entire world. If Russia and Iran let their guard down, they will be nuked, and so will China. Washington stands for one thing and one thing only: World Hegemony. Just ask the Neoconservatives or read their documents.
The neoconservatives control Washington. No one else in the government has a voice. For the neoconservatives, Armageddon is a tolerable risk to achieve the goal of American World Hegemony. Only Russia and China can save the world from Armageddon, but are they too deluded and worshipful of the West to save Planet Earth?
One year after Minsk 1: Bottom-line Assessment
of Putin’s Strategic Cunning
by Vladimir Suchan
September 18, 2015
Objectively, the Kremlin’s cunning (or not cunning) policies or “strategies” have produced or helped produce these principal results in Ukraine:
1) containing and guaranteeing the anti-fascist, anti-oligarchic uprising in such a way that it is no longer anti-oligarchic even within the DPR and the LPR and, officially and as far as the Kremlin is concerned, no longer even anti-fascist, but merely more like a plea for local administrative reforms (whatever it means);
2) containing and guaranteeing Novorossiya by freezing it as a 1/3 of the “particular areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions of Ukraine,” with explicit orders from the Kremlin forbidding not only ANY offensive, but even to respond to the junta’s shelling;
3) by quickly turning on the Russian Spring in the name of “partnership” with the Ukrainian Banderite fascists and oligarchs and by recognizing their regime as legitimate, the Kremlin managed to abort the Russian Spring; even the name Novorossiya is now for the Kremlin taboo;
4) all in all, the Kremlin just made a significant contribution (also with gas and oil subsidies, smuggling of Donbass coal, financing of the junta by the Russian state banks, etc.) to the firm consolidation of the fascist, anti-Russian regime in Ukraine. This has been the main achievement of Putin’s or Surkov’s protectorate leadership.
Kremlin’s taste is a mindset of oligarchy incorporated:
What’s in the name?
by Vladimir Suchan
September 18, 2015
Russian state new agency manages to frame pro-Minsk, Kremlin’s hypnotic prompt in the title of its info, which, for the effect, the reader is told that the DPR and the LPR are “unrecognized.” But TASS omits to tell the reader by whom exactly.
The non-recognition is emphasized here by TASS, the Russian state agency, so it is the Russian government itself that wants the reader to have on his mind imprinted first and foremost the idea of non-recognition, but without mentioning the fact that it is the Russian government itself which refuses to recognize the DPR and the LPR or officially even their national liberation struggle as such. Second, TASS and, behind TASS, the Russian government emphasizes that the DPR and the LPR are really “Ukraine’s.” Here it does not just mean any Ukraine’s in general, but today’s Ukraine’s which happens to be ruled by the Banderite fascist oligarchs.
The message is: they belong to the fascists and any other belonging of theirs is “unrecognized.”
This is deliberate. For in the case of ISIS or IS I have not seen one single instance of Lavrov or Putin or TASS saying “unrecognized IS” (“Islamic State”) or “self-declared Islamic State” etc. and even less Iraq’s or Syria’s “unrecognized Islamic State” (IS). Evidently, in the case of ISIS, the Kremlin does not have a problem “recognizing” and using the name which the fundamentalist terrorists chose for themselves without any dis-qualifiers.
The Kremlin is so adamant to stand up to the West in defense of the Russian interests that it even uses Western vocabulary and terms in which it frames the struggle of the Russian people for their own freedom.
Even in its propaganda the Kremlin thinks and speaks like a slave of the West.
Monday September 28, 2015 Update:
Putin said to the leaders of the West: Do you understand what you’ve done?
The situation in the Middle East and Syria has become one of the main topics at the opening of the 70th session of the UN General Assembly in New York. Speaking at the UN General Assembly in New York, the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin said that the culprits in the current situation around the Middle East, Syria, and the emergence of the “Islamic State” are those who destroyed the existing state institutions in Libya, Iraq, and now want it in Syria. “Aggressive intervention has led to the fact that instead of reform, public institutions, and way of life were just unceremoniously destroyed. Instead of triumph of democracy and progress – the violence, poverty, social disaster, and human rights, including the right to life, get lost in the shuffle. I’d like to ask those who created this situation – do you understand now, what have you done?” said the President of Russia. Putin further stated that the advances of the West with terrorists, as underestimating their capabilities, may lead to irreversible consequences. [italics mine]
Karl Pomeroy Comments
Russian President Vladimir Putin is right to challenge the West, demanding “Do you understand now what you have done?”
Conversely, Quemado Institute demands of Putin: Do you understand now what you have done? By leading the people of Donbass on and allowing them to believe, without clarification from you, that the May 11, 2014 vote for independence was a vote to join Russia, by recognizing Petro Poroshenko’s criminal regime in Kiev, by failing to recognize the Donetsk and Lugansk Republics as legitimate democracies, by forcing your so-called “Ukrainian territorial integrity” through the Minsk 2.0 process regardless of the genocidal crimes of Kiev committed against the residents of Donbass, and by undermining the governmental authorities in the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics internally, their “way of life was just unceremoniously destroyed. Instead of triumph of democracy and progress – the violence, poverty, social disaster, and human rights, including the right to life, get lost in the shuffle.”
Does Putin understand what he has done? No.
Does the West understand what it has done? No.
I rest my case.