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Is America still Europe’s ally? EU leaders are reconsidering their approach to Russia

"No permanent friends or enemies" (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

"No permanent friends or enemies" (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)


December 12, 2022   5 mins

Warmer-than-average temperatures may have spared Europe from the worst effects of the energy crisis, but that is about to change: with temperatures predicted to plummet in the coming weeks, heightened demand for dwindling (and very expensive) supplies of natural gas will seriously test Europe’s fragile energy networks — potentially to breaking point.

In Germany, the Office of Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance recently issued a near-apocalyptic advisory telling people what to expect in the event of a blackout: “The telephone is dead, the heating doesn’t come on, there is no warm water, the computer goes on strike, the coffee machine stays off, there is no light.” The agency urged households to stock up on battery-powered flashlights and candles, and even suggested camp stoves to prepare small meals. Elsewhere in Europe, governments are preparing food distribution networks that can function through a blackout.

A colder-than-normal winter is expected in the UK as well. Ofgem has said there is “a significant risk” of gas shortages, which could affect electricity supplies. And with more than 3 million low-income UK households unable to afford to heat their homes, the cold weather, combined with potential energy shortages and higher prices, could have lethal consequences, and not just in Britain. According to one disturbing study published in The Economist, based on the historical relationship between mortality, weather and energy costs, the death toll from the energy crisis across Europe could exceed the number of soldiers who have died in the Ukraine war so far. Depending on temperatures, prices and government support measures, between 30,000 and 300,000 deaths above the historical average may be recorded across the continent this winter. Sanctions kill — we’ve known that for a long time (just ask the Iraqis); these, however, are probably the first sanctions in history that could kill the sanctioners.

Meanwhile, EU countries have reduced their gas demand by a quarter, according to the Financial Times as industry cuts back or stops production altogether following the rising costs. In the coming months, this will mean higher prices and possible shortages in energy-intensive industries such as metals, chemicals (including fertiliser), plastic and food. Moreover, analysts warn that without increased supplies, gas shortages could persist for years in Europe, regardless of the lower demand. This would effectively mean the long-term deindustrialisation of the continent — with the chaos, political instability and unrest that would go along with that.

It’s no surprise, then, that European leaders are looking for a way out of the hole they dug themselves by joining the US in its proxy war against their main gas provider — even as the EU itself continues to sabotage any possible diplomatic solution to the conflict. Only last week, French president Emmanuel Macron marked his profound difference with the US (and EU) stance on Ukraine during an interview for the French channel TF1, in which he said that Nato member states may have to offer “security guarantees” to Russia when Moscow and Kyiv resume negotiations. “This means that one of the essential points we must address — as Putin has always said — is the fear that Nato comes right up to its doors and the deployment of weapons that could threaten Russia,” Macron said. “That topic will be part of the topics for peace, so we need to prepare what we are ready to do, how we protect our allies and member states, and how to give guarantees to Russia the day it returns to the negotiating table.”

Macron has always had a more “realist” approach to the issue than his colleagues, yet this was the first time a European leader suggested that Russia’s decision to invade Ukraine may have been motivated by legitimate security concerns. Before the invasion, Putin said at a joint press conference with Macron in Moscow that Russia would aim to obtain replies from the West to its main three security demands. These included stopping any future Nato enlargement, presenting missile deployments near its borders, and a scaling back of Nato’s military infrastructure in Europe to 1997 levels.

Back then, the US and its Western allies called the Russian demands “non-starters”; however, after ten months of war that have ravaged Ukraine, an increasing number of people in the West are considering the possibility that, as Charles Kupchan recently wrote in the New York Times, “sooner rather than later, the West needs to move Ukraine and Russia from the battlefield to the negotiating table”, and that a hypothetical deal between Russia and Ukraine would necessarily have to include a commitment by Ukraine to “back away from its intention to join Nato”. Kupchan even goes on to admit that “Russia has legitimate security concerns about Nato setting up shop on the other side of its 1,000-mile-plus border with Ukraine”.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz also marked his distance from the US’s hardline stance by talking to Putin for the second time in successive months, and suggesting that Europe should return to the pre-war “peace order” with Russia and resolve “all common security issues” if Putin would be willing to renounce aggression against his neighbours. Yet for all the talk of the war in Ukraine making “the EU and the transatlantic alliance stronger than ever before”, as Scholz recently claimed, the reality is that transatlantic relations have been growing increasingly strained for months. Several European officials have accused the Americans of profiting from the war — and from Europe’s hardship. In their attempt to reduce their reliance on Russian energy, EU countries have turned to gas from the US instead — but the price Europeans pay is almost four times higher than the same fuel costs in America. Macron said high US gas prices were not “friendly”, while Germany’s economy minister has called on Washington to show more “solidarity” and help reduce energy costs. So far, the US has ignored Europe’s concerns.

On top of that, sales of American military equipment in Europe are booming: since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, countries in the EU have pledged to beef up their arsenals, and the US — which provides most of the weaponry — has been the biggest beneficiary. “The fact is, if you look at it soberly, the country that is most profiting from this war is the US because they are selling more gas and at higher prices, and because they are selling more weapons,” one senior official told Politico.

The war, however, isn’t the only crack in EU-US relations. Anger has also been mounting in Europe over America’s Inflation Reduction Act, a $369-billion package of subsidies and tax breaks enacted by the Biden Administration to boost American manufacturing (under the guise of the “green shift”). From a European perspective, the bill constitutes a protectionist measure that encourages companies to shift investments from Europe and incentivises customers to “Buy American”,  dealing a serious blow to Europe’s already struggling industry.

The EU’s chief diplomat, Josep Borrell, has called on Washington to respond to European concerns. “Americans — our friends — take decisions which have an economic impact on us,” he said. “Is Washington still our ally or not?”, asked one clearly traumatised EU diplomat, while Macron referred to the Inflation Reduction Act as “super aggressive” towards European companies. These choices “will fragment the West because they create such differences between the US and Europe, that those who work in these companies/industries will simply decide not to keep investing on the other side of the Atlantic”, he said.

While such complaints may seem reasonable, one might ask why the continent’s politicians are only now waking up to the reality that the war in Ukraine is, as Nicholas Vinocur, Editor-at-large of Politico Europe, has observed, “just one facet of the US’s larger strategic duel with China, which will always take precedence over EU interests”. From a US perspective, this doesn’t mean simply decoupling from China, but rethinking the entire paradigm of globalisation by rebuilding the country’s manufacturing capacity and making the US self-sufficient in a whole series of strategic industries. This is really what the Inflation Reduction Act is all about.

In this context, Europe isn’t seen as a strategic ally but as a competitor and a rival, which the US has every interest in keeping in a subordinate position. It does not seem unreasonable to posit that one of the aims of America’s strategy may be to strengthen its own hegemony over the continent and end Europe’s aspirations to “strategic autonomy”.

“America has no permanent friends or enemies, only interests,” Henry Kissinger said. Today, these words seem strikingly prescient. America’s interests no longer seem aligned with Europe’s (if they ever were). The sooner Europeans realise that, the sooner they can get to work on something they’ve been neglecting for a very long time: thinking about where their own interests lie.

 ***

Order your copy of UnHerd’s first print edition here


Thomas Fazi is an UnHerd columnist and translator. His latest book is The Covid Consensus, co-authored with Toby Green.

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Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago

Why would America put anyone’s interests ahead of its own? Do we expect any different from Germany or Britain?

I think it’s fair for Europe to demand some consideration from the U.S., whatever that might look like. They are closely linked and real partners support each other.

But European leaders need to put on their big boy pants and take ownership of their domestic issues.

The U.S. has basically been footing the bill for NATO since its inception. Maybe Europe should start paying its share. As for energy, Europe can’t blame anyone but itself. In the midst of maybe the worst energy crisis ever, Germany hasn’t lifted a finger in the North Sea. Britain refuses to get serious about fracking.

The political leadership in Europe is a joke, just like it is in the U.S. and the rest of the west. This train wreck was years in the making and it needs to stop, or the consequences will be dire.

The ruling and managerial elite is in the thrall of some self-destructive ideology that blinds them to common-sense decision making, whether it be foreign affairs, energy production, budgets, health care, education – basically anything and everything.

AC Harper
AC Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

But European leaders need to put on their big boy pants and take ownership of their domestic issues.
Quite so. But ‘managerial’ politicians try to manage the consequences of events whereas ‘proper’ politicians manage whether or not the events happen. Back foot and front foot stances. Arguably Putin is a front foot politician and the managerial politicians of the West don’t know how to respond.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  AC Harper

Maybe Putin is a “front foot politician” — whatever that means — but by the way this smells, his front foot really stepped in it.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  AC Harper

Maybe Putin is a “front foot politician” — whatever that means — but by the way this smells, his front foot really stepped in it.

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Your last paragraph sums up Europe’s conundrum perfectly.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

“Why would America put anyone’s interests ahead of its own? ”
Then Britain should pause and think that joining a war in Iraq or Afghanistan or a needless conflict in Ukraine is purely in American interests, and put British interests ahead of others.

” The U.S. has basically been footing the bill for NATO since its inception. ”
Nope. Western Europe paid enormous amounts for defense during the cold war.
The US has footed the bill for NATO since the end of the cold war – and the end of NATO’s relevance. While Europe opted to scale back, the US continues in war mode, ever searching for new reasons for war like a mad dog.

The fact that we had talks a out extending NATO all the way to Russia three decades after 1991, is astounding. Why don’t Germany and Russia join hands with Britain and Austria to invade France to honour their 1815 alliance?

stephen archer
stephen archer
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

In Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping, or keeping the peace, rather than warmongering. When you have a malignant cancer trying to threaten, spread and take over as Russia/USSR has done over the last 100 or so years then Europe should be thankful for US support, whatever their other intentions. It’s a choice between a much lesser capitalist evil or an authoritarian, totally corrupt and barbaric evil. My wife and millions others will tell you what it was like growing up in Poland in the 50’s and 60’s. “Needless conflict in Ukraine”? Yes of course, but the needless is 100% attributed to Russia and not Europe’s need to restore peace on its boundaries to the east. Your reasoning is warped and ridiculous in the current context.

Dermot O'Sullivan
Dermot O'Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

Well said.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

“Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping”
The same “Europe” that launched a bloody invasion of Russia in 1812, interfered in Crimea in 1856, attacked the nascent communist government in Russia, murdered 20 million in ww2?
The same Europe that pushed all the way to a Russia that was no threat as soon as they had the opportunity in the 90s, while showing how peaceful they are in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan,?

“the needless is 100% attributed to Russia ”
Sure, all they had to do was to accept NATO and it’s missiles next door, all for purely defensive reasons, allow an American funded regime in Ukraine.
And of course, accept the Russian speaking minorities of the Donbass being pounded into submission.

The Russians didn’t murder 6mn Poles in the 50s and 60s. The Germans did, just a decade prior. Strange how you manage to enjoy a military alliance with them now?

The correct answer to the above is that Germany today has no correlation with 1940s Germany, but anyone with a brain could also tell you the Russian that peacefully withdrew from Poland 30 years back and has an army 1/10th the size, has no correlation with 1950s Soviet Union.

What the Russians do have in common with the 50s Soviets is all the bloody Invasions by “peaceful” West Europeans through the centuries.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Quite right, and it’s refreshing to read someone objective and historically literate enough to see it. What a shower of baying, brainwashed eejits we get BtL on any right-of-centre publication whenever Ukraine, Russia and NATO come up. Brookings Institute trolls, or just armchair nutters? God knows, but they’re the same loons who show up loyally for the well-lunchedby Northrup Grumman and MI6, barking mad bore Con Coughlin and his weekly Two-Minutes Hate. Khomeini, Gaddafi, Sadaam Hussein, now Tsar Vlad – in Coughlin’s world view (which always bears a remarkable similarity to the State Dept’s world view) every decade has an exotic, evil new foreign supervillain engaged in a Manichean struggle with the forces of Freedum and, er, Wall Street and General Dynamics.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

The Defence Illuminati have ruled the US since 1776!
Democracy there is just a play of shadow puppets!

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

The Defence Illuminati have ruled the US since 1776!
Democracy there is just a play of shadow puppets!

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

I honour Russia’s sense of victimhood.
But the above is also an ingenious, and very selective reading of history.
The Russians murdered 1 million in the Caucasus in the 19th C, many more in all its other Central Asian conquests.
And, of course, at least 30 million last century.
It also chose to try and implement a totally bankrupt system of governance and economics for 74 years–one that drove the country over the cliff in 1991.
Blaming everyone but oneself for the idiotic choices Russia has made over the last several centuries is emotionally satisfying, but will probably end in another collapse in the near future.
Oh, did I mention Russia’s alliance with Nazi Germany, which resulted in a Germany in 1941 with a capability four times its size, as compared with 1939?

David Giles
David Giles
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

What a very great pity for you Putin himself stent set these sheen as his reasons for invading his sovereign neighbour, claiming instead it’s sovereignty was invalid and it was really a part of his country.

He hasn’t been kind to his apologists, has he.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Under Russian puppet control between 1948 and 1987 20,000 and 50,000 Poles were executed by the regime. https://warsawinstitute.org/post-war-war-years-1944-1963-poland/

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Delete

Last edited 1 year ago by Kat L
Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Quite right, and it’s refreshing to read someone objective and historically literate enough to see it. What a shower of baying, brainwashed eejits we get BtL on any right-of-centre publication whenever Ukraine, Russia and NATO come up. Brookings Institute trolls, or just armchair nutters? God knows, but they’re the same loons who show up loyally for the well-lunchedby Northrup Grumman and MI6, barking mad bore Con Coughlin and his weekly Two-Minutes Hate. Khomeini, Gaddafi, Sadaam Hussein, now Tsar Vlad – in Coughlin’s world view (which always bears a remarkable similarity to the State Dept’s world view) every decade has an exotic, evil new foreign supervillain engaged in a Manichean struggle with the forces of Freedum and, er, Wall Street and General Dynamics.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

I honour Russia’s sense of victimhood.
But the above is also an ingenious, and very selective reading of history.
The Russians murdered 1 million in the Caucasus in the 19th C, many more in all its other Central Asian conquests.
And, of course, at least 30 million last century.
It also chose to try and implement a totally bankrupt system of governance and economics for 74 years–one that drove the country over the cliff in 1991.
Blaming everyone but oneself for the idiotic choices Russia has made over the last several centuries is emotionally satisfying, but will probably end in another collapse in the near future.
Oh, did I mention Russia’s alliance with Nazi Germany, which resulted in a Germany in 1941 with a capability four times its size, as compared with 1939?

David Giles
David Giles
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

What a very great pity for you Putin himself stent set these sheen as his reasons for invading his sovereign neighbour, claiming instead it’s sovereignty was invalid and it was really a part of his country.

He hasn’t been kind to his apologists, has he.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Under Russian puppet control between 1948 and 1987 20,000 and 50,000 Poles were executed by the regime. https://warsawinstitute.org/post-war-war-years-1944-1963-poland/

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Delete

Last edited 1 year ago by Kat L
Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

”In Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping, or keeping the peace, rather than warmongering.”

You have drunk the Koolaid, as have your upvoters.

This regional conflict which was in NO Western power’s vital interests has been made into WWIII and divided the Globe into ‘Axis and Allies’ and will destroy the global economy, change it when the BRICS, and all the resource economies join in making a new Reserve currency, and will destroy EU – and naturally Ukraine you say you are saving will be destroyed – –

EVERYTHING bad comes from this Neo-Con warmongering by Biden/Boris, and NOTHING Good.

This is an evil war and the treaty table must solve it – no matter the results in Ukraine, the world NEEDS this WWIII to STOP!!!!

PEACE NOW!

or you destroy yourself, the Ukraine, and the Global economy – for NOTHING GOOD!

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

I would aver that a broken and destitute Russia–which now seems unavoidable–will be the greatest boon to mankind since the victory in 1945.
No Russia,
No Problem.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

I would aver that a broken and destitute Russia–which now seems unavoidable–will be the greatest boon to mankind since the victory in 1945.
No Russia,
No Problem.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
Dermot O'Sullivan
Dermot O'Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

Well said.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

“Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping”
The same “Europe” that launched a bloody invasion of Russia in 1812, interfered in Crimea in 1856, attacked the nascent communist government in Russia, murdered 20 million in ww2?
The same Europe that pushed all the way to a Russia that was no threat as soon as they had the opportunity in the 90s, while showing how peaceful they are in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan,?

“the needless is 100% attributed to Russia ”
Sure, all they had to do was to accept NATO and it’s missiles next door, all for purely defensive reasons, allow an American funded regime in Ukraine.
And of course, accept the Russian speaking minorities of the Donbass being pounded into submission.

The Russians didn’t murder 6mn Poles in the 50s and 60s. The Germans did, just a decade prior. Strange how you manage to enjoy a military alliance with them now?

The correct answer to the above is that Germany today has no correlation with 1940s Germany, but anyone with a brain could also tell you the Russian that peacefully withdrew from Poland 30 years back and has an army 1/10th the size, has no correlation with 1950s Soviet Union.

What the Russians do have in common with the 50s Soviets is all the bloody Invasions by “peaceful” West Europeans through the centuries.

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

”In Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping, or keeping the peace, rather than warmongering.”

You have drunk the Koolaid, as have your upvoters.

This regional conflict which was in NO Western power’s vital interests has been made into WWIII and divided the Globe into ‘Axis and Allies’ and will destroy the global economy, change it when the BRICS, and all the resource economies join in making a new Reserve currency, and will destroy EU – and naturally Ukraine you say you are saving will be destroyed – –

EVERYTHING bad comes from this Neo-Con warmongering by Biden/Boris, and NOTHING Good.

This is an evil war and the treaty table must solve it – no matter the results in Ukraine, the world NEEDS this WWIII to STOP!!!!

PEACE NOW!

or you destroy yourself, the Ukraine, and the Global economy – for NOTHING GOOD!

Mr Bellisarius
Mr Bellisarius
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Because NATO is still a very effective defensive force.
And defence is the key word hear, the idea that it’s preparing to invade Russia is just an invention from Putin.
Eastern European countries have wanted to join NATO because they fear Russian expansionism. They were absolutely right.
Putin fears NATO not because he thinks they will invade Russia, but because NATO stops him from his dream of annexing all the ex-USSR territories.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

“defence is the key word hear”
What were the NATO nations defending against in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan?

Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Afghanistan was to go after Al-Qaeda after 9/11 which was heavily based in Afghanistan.
Iraq #1 was due to Iraq invading Kuwait.
Iraq #2 didn’t need to happen.
This wasn’t just NATO as there were many countries involved outside of NATO.
Notice that none of these countries are controlled by NATO or and NATO member countries. Whether you agree with them or not, they were not fought for conquest as Russia is doing.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Er, demahcracy and freedum!
And also, dah rules based world order!

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Afghanistan was to go after Al-Qaeda after 9/11 which was heavily based in Afghanistan.
Iraq #1 was due to Iraq invading Kuwait.
Iraq #2 didn’t need to happen.
This wasn’t just NATO as there were many countries involved outside of NATO.
Notice that none of these countries are controlled by NATO or and NATO member countries. Whether you agree with them or not, they were not fought for conquest as Russia is doing.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Er, demahcracy and freedum!
And also, dah rules based world order!

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

Defensive? The USSA has invaded dozens of foreign countries since the 1890s. Modern Russia, since 1990, er, one prior to Ukraine (namely Syria).
Biden has made mo secret of his intention to bring Ukraine into NATO, Crimea and all. Russia is not going to allow that to happen, any more than the USSA would allow Texas to join the Warsaw Pact. Just look at the CIA’s backing for the Greek Colonels’ coup in 1967: never mind what the elected government of Greece might have preferred, the State Dept was determined to have its way and democracy be damned.
I suppose that was all fine, was it? Russia is a country of very limited means and little real threat to anyone beyond the borders of the former Soviet Union. The rabid, self-righteous, warmongering, woke- and fentanyl-addled USSA, on the other hand, proves itself decade after decade a worsening global menace, militarily, economically and culturally.

Phil Mack
Phil Mack
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Did you have to wipe the spittle off your screen after typing that 70s-esque fever dream?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Uh, then how did Russian troops get into Moldova, Georgia, and Ukraine?
Into Syria?
Into Libya?
And various sub-Saharan African states?
And try to overthrow the Montenegran Govt?
Factually, Russia has tried to overturn far more govts than the US since the Cold War ended.
And also poisoned many more people.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

You forgot https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russo-Georgian_War 2008 and South Ossetia and Abkhazia

Phil Mack
Phil Mack
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Did you have to wipe the spittle off your screen after typing that 70s-esque fever dream?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Uh, then how did Russian troops get into Moldova, Georgia, and Ukraine?
Into Syria?
Into Libya?
And various sub-Saharan African states?
And try to overthrow the Montenegran Govt?
Factually, Russia has tried to overturn far more govts than the US since the Cold War ended.
And also poisoned many more people.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

You forgot https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russo-Georgian_War 2008 and South Ossetia and Abkhazia

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

“defence is the key word hear”
What were the NATO nations defending against in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan?

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

Defensive? The USSA has invaded dozens of foreign countries since the 1890s. Modern Russia, since 1990, er, one prior to Ukraine (namely Syria).
Biden has made mo secret of his intention to bring Ukraine into NATO, Crimea and all. Russia is not going to allow that to happen, any more than the USSA would allow Texas to join the Warsaw Pact. Just look at the CIA’s backing for the Greek Colonels’ coup in 1967: never mind what the elected government of Greece might have preferred, the State Dept was determined to have its way and democracy be damned.
I suppose that was all fine, was it? Russia is a country of very limited means and little real threat to anyone beyond the borders of the former Soviet Union. The rabid, self-righteous, warmongering, woke- and fentanyl-addled USSA, on the other hand, proves itself decade after decade a worsening global menace, militarily, economically and culturally.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Thanks for a comment that made my actually dig up the data.
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=FR
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=SE
At first glance, I thought you were correct. However, the view changes a little when these are compared with the US:
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=US
It would be more accurate to say that Europe has been reducing its military spending for 60 years straight. They cut back after 1990, but the decline began decades before. The NATO alliance was bound up with European WWII reconstruction. In theory, a reconstructed Europe should have been able to provide MORE of its own defense. That didn’t happen. The US really did carry the vast majority of cold war military expenditures.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago

They could afford to. As bankers and chief suppliers for two world wars, they were the ones with money left when Europe and the British Empire were broken and ruined.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago

They could afford to. As bankers and chief suppliers for two world wars, they were the ones with money left when Europe and the British Empire were broken and ruined.

Iris C
Iris C
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Who is American-led NATO defending us against? The Russian Federation is quite different from the Soviet Union with its open borders, political structure and joint economic interests In fact, the EU had friendly relations with Putin until America nudged Ukraine into rejecting neutrality and creating the present unending conflict.
The UK was more ambivalent in its relationship with Russia with Boris Johnston and his political allies being totally American orientated. However, from the evidence so far, it would seem that the present PM is less subservient..
Is China a threat? I don’t think so. Its interest are on the other side of the globe. We just must make sure that America does not manufacture a reason to start a conflict over there as, I believe, (and this article shows) it did in Europe…

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

Oh, it was UKRAINE that invaded on 24 Feb, and not peace-loving Russia?
Ukraine was quite happy to remain neutral right up to 24 Feb.
But the result has been that NATO is now far closer to Russia’s borders, and the Baltic is basically a NATO lake.
Pretty good defence I’d say.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

I think you will find the EU were behind the overthrow of the Russian puppet regime by offering EU accession they provoked the uprising. How was the USA to blame for that ?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

Oh, it was UKRAINE that invaded on 24 Feb, and not peace-loving Russia?
Ukraine was quite happy to remain neutral right up to 24 Feb.
But the result has been that NATO is now far closer to Russia’s borders, and the Baltic is basically a NATO lake.
Pretty good defence I’d say.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

I think you will find the EU were behind the overthrow of the Russian puppet regime by offering EU accession they provoked the uprising. How was the USA to blame for that ?

Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

If you want to know why NATO still exists, see the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
You are naive if you buy the argument that Russia invaded BECAUSE of NATO. Aggressive totalitarian leaders always give false reasons for their aggression. The real reason is always that they want to expand their power.

stephen archer
stephen archer
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

In Europe’s case this is a question of peacekeeping, or keeping the peace, rather than warmongering. When you have a malignant cancer trying to threaten, spread and take over as Russia/USSR has done over the last 100 or so years then Europe should be thankful for US support, whatever their other intentions. It’s a choice between a much lesser capitalist evil or an authoritarian, totally corrupt and barbaric evil. My wife and millions others will tell you what it was like growing up in Poland in the 50’s and 60’s. “Needless conflict in Ukraine”? Yes of course, but the needless is 100% attributed to Russia and not Europe’s need to restore peace on its boundaries to the east. Your reasoning is warped and ridiculous in the current context.

Mr Bellisarius
Mr Bellisarius
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Because NATO is still a very effective defensive force.
And defence is the key word hear, the idea that it’s preparing to invade Russia is just an invention from Putin.
Eastern European countries have wanted to join NATO because they fear Russian expansionism. They were absolutely right.
Putin fears NATO not because he thinks they will invade Russia, but because NATO stops him from his dream of annexing all the ex-USSR territories.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Thanks for a comment that made my actually dig up the data.
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=FR
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=SE
At first glance, I thought you were correct. However, the view changes a little when these are compared with the US:
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/MS.MIL.XPND.GD.ZS?locations=US
It would be more accurate to say that Europe has been reducing its military spending for 60 years straight. They cut back after 1990, but the decline began decades before. The NATO alliance was bound up with European WWII reconstruction. In theory, a reconstructed Europe should have been able to provide MORE of its own defense. That didn’t happen. The US really did carry the vast majority of cold war military expenditures.

Iris C
Iris C
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Who is American-led NATO defending us against? The Russian Federation is quite different from the Soviet Union with its open borders, political structure and joint economic interests In fact, the EU had friendly relations with Putin until America nudged Ukraine into rejecting neutrality and creating the present unending conflict.
The UK was more ambivalent in its relationship with Russia with Boris Johnston and his political allies being totally American orientated. However, from the evidence so far, it would seem that the present PM is less subservient..
Is China a threat? I don’t think so. Its interest are on the other side of the globe. We just must make sure that America does not manufacture a reason to start a conflict over there as, I believe, (and this article shows) it did in Europe…

Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

If you want to know why NATO still exists, see the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
You are naive if you buy the argument that Russia invaded BECAUSE of NATO. Aggressive totalitarian leaders always give false reasons for their aggression. The real reason is always that they want to expand their power.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It was only yesterday that European leaders were enthralled with the Biden Administration- what gives now? They got what they wanted but they don’t want it anymore.

And wasn’t it just a few years ago that the Germans laughed at Trump when he warned them against their reliance on Russia? And wasn’t it the Germans who shut down at least three of their nuclear power plants and were on the way to shutting down more when the Ukrainian crisis occurred? Who in these countries is deluded or has no foresight?

Last edited 1 year ago by Cathy Carron
Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

It is certainly a strange 180 degree turn of events. Not long ago, just mentioning that we should have at least considered Putin’s demands about not having NATO on his Western borders would have gotten you cancelled or labeled as a stooge for Putin. Now the NYT is agreeing?
What next? The realization that a few humans can’t impact the globe’s climate? Can only hope.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

The NYT is a corrupt leftist rag unworthy even for use in the outhouse.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Wim de Vriend

I wouldn’t let it near by rear!

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Wim de Vriend

I wouldn’t let it near by rear!

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Few humans??? Ever been to Los Angeles? You can taste the brown air…

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

The NYT is a corrupt leftist rag unworthy even for use in the outhouse.

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Few humans??? Ever been to Los Angeles? You can taste the brown air…

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

It is certainly a strange 180 degree turn of events. Not long ago, just mentioning that we should have at least considered Putin’s demands about not having NATO on his Western borders would have gotten you cancelled or labeled as a stooge for Putin. Now the NYT is agreeing?
What next? The realization that a few humans can’t impact the globe’s climate? Can only hope.

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I neve4 understood why Merkel closed down Germany’s nuclear power after Fukishima. It is not as if anyone died from the explosion there. They died from the dam burst ( something recently denied by Wikipedia) and the flooding and other hardships associated with mass eva uation.

Rick Frazier
Rick Frazier
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

The level of radiation exposure at Fukishima was no greater than what people living in Colorado are exposed to every day.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

That is correct, mostly. The diesel pumps for the Fukushima plant’s cooling water had been placed too close to sea level, an irresponsible thing to do in a country with a long history of near-shore earthquakes and tsunamis. So th8e tsunami put them out of commission, and that’s what caused the meltdown. On the other hand the German nuclear plants — and the much more numerous French plants — are not in active earthquake zones at all; and considering that plus her “Energiewende”s idiotic switch to wind and sun, it seems to me Angela Merkel deserves to be ranked as one of the worst heads of state ever. Though that’s unlikely to happen. After all, she is woman.

Last edited 1 year ago by Wim de Vriend
Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Because of the depopulation agenda?

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Don’t forget Mutti grew up in communist East Germany and basically wanted to get on-side with her old Russian allies. She was even a member of the “Free German Youth” basically a marxist version of the 3rd Reich’s children’s wing. Its no surprise she would be pining for the old days in the same way that Putin is.

Rick Frazier
Rick Frazier
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

The level of radiation exposure at Fukishima was no greater than what people living in Colorado are exposed to every day.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

That is correct, mostly. The diesel pumps for the Fukushima plant’s cooling water had been placed too close to sea level, an irresponsible thing to do in a country with a long history of near-shore earthquakes and tsunamis. So th8e tsunami put them out of commission, and that’s what caused the meltdown. On the other hand the German nuclear plants — and the much more numerous French plants — are not in active earthquake zones at all; and considering that plus her “Energiewende”s idiotic switch to wind and sun, it seems to me Angela Merkel deserves to be ranked as one of the worst heads of state ever. Though that’s unlikely to happen. After all, she is woman.

Last edited 1 year ago by Wim de Vriend
Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Because of the depopulation agenda?

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Don’t forget Mutti grew up in communist East Germany and basically wanted to get on-side with her old Russian allies. She was even a member of the “Free German Youth” basically a marxist version of the 3rd Reich’s children’s wing. Its no surprise she would be pining for the old days in the same way that Putin is.

Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

This is one of those cases where I wish I had more likes to give.

AC Harper
AC Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

But European leaders need to put on their big boy pants and take ownership of their domestic issues.
Quite so. But ‘managerial’ politicians try to manage the consequences of events whereas ‘proper’ politicians manage whether or not the events happen. Back foot and front foot stances. Arguably Putin is a front foot politician and the managerial politicians of the West don’t know how to respond.

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Your last paragraph sums up Europe’s conundrum perfectly.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

“Why would America put anyone’s interests ahead of its own? ”
Then Britain should pause and think that joining a war in Iraq or Afghanistan or a needless conflict in Ukraine is purely in American interests, and put British interests ahead of others.

” The U.S. has basically been footing the bill for NATO since its inception. ”
Nope. Western Europe paid enormous amounts for defense during the cold war.
The US has footed the bill for NATO since the end of the cold war – and the end of NATO’s relevance. While Europe opted to scale back, the US continues in war mode, ever searching for new reasons for war like a mad dog.

The fact that we had talks a out extending NATO all the way to Russia three decades after 1991, is astounding. Why don’t Germany and Russia join hands with Britain and Austria to invade France to honour their 1815 alliance?

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It was only yesterday that European leaders were enthralled with the Biden Administration- what gives now? They got what they wanted but they don’t want it anymore.

And wasn’t it just a few years ago that the Germans laughed at Trump when he warned them against their reliance on Russia? And wasn’t it the Germans who shut down at least three of their nuclear power plants and were on the way to shutting down more when the Ukrainian crisis occurred? Who in these countries is deluded or has no foresight?

Last edited 1 year ago by Cathy Carron
Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I neve4 understood why Merkel closed down Germany’s nuclear power after Fukishima. It is not as if anyone died from the explosion there. They died from the dam burst ( something recently denied by Wikipedia) and the flooding and other hardships associated with mass eva uation.

Bryon Grosz
Bryon Grosz
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

This is one of those cases where I wish I had more likes to give.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago

Why would America put anyone’s interests ahead of its own? Do we expect any different from Germany or Britain?

I think it’s fair for Europe to demand some consideration from the U.S., whatever that might look like. They are closely linked and real partners support each other.

But European leaders need to put on their big boy pants and take ownership of their domestic issues.

The U.S. has basically been footing the bill for NATO since its inception. Maybe Europe should start paying its share. As for energy, Europe can’t blame anyone but itself. In the midst of maybe the worst energy crisis ever, Germany hasn’t lifted a finger in the North Sea. Britain refuses to get serious about fracking.

The political leadership in Europe is a joke, just like it is in the U.S. and the rest of the west. This train wreck was years in the making and it needs to stop, or the consequences will be dire.

The ruling and managerial elite is in the thrall of some self-destructive ideology that blinds them to common-sense decision making, whether it be foreign affairs, energy production, budgets, health care, education – basically anything and everything.

Fletcher Christian
Fletcher Christian
1 year ago

To re-phrase Blackadders famous quote…

The plan was to create a series of interconnected energy interdependent semi-sovereign states ruled by a globalist managerial class, distanced from the electorate by a vast bureaucracy, thereby avoiding the possibility of war. There was just one problem with the plan….. it was bollox.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

Excellent!

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago

This evil war, made to the apocalyptic WWIII by the Evil Biden/Boris Regimes, for who knows what reason, will destroy the global economy, destroy the EU and UK economies, and rather than save, will totally destroy Ukraine.

PEACE NOW

Enough Death, destruction, maiming, destroying civilian lives and future, starving the Third World, and destroying the Global Economy.

War What Is It Good For Absolutely Nothing Lyrics[Intro]
(War, huh) Yeah!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing, uhuh
(War, huh) Yeah!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Say it again, y’all!
(War, huh) Lookout!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Listen to me, awwwww!
[Verse 1]
War I despise
‘Cause it means destruction of innocent lives
War means tears to thousands of mothers’ eyes
When their sons go out to fight and lose their lives
I said
[Hook]
(War, huh) Good God y’all
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing, say it again
(War, huh) Lord, lord, lord, lord
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Listen to me!
[Verse 2]
(War), It ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
(War), Friend only to the undertaker, awwww
War is the enemy of all mankind
The thought of war blows my mind
War has caused unrest, within the younger generation
Induction then destruction
Who wants to die?
Awwww!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmNXzMw69zI

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Some things are best said with music. Brilliant. I answer you with my millennial equivalent:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CFrxuVo4oI0
Peace now sounds very sensible to me.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Uh, you ARE aware that it was Putin who invaded on 24 Feb?
Easy to forget that small detail.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Some things are best said with music. Brilliant. I answer you with my millennial equivalent:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CFrxuVo4oI0
Peace now sounds very sensible to me.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

Uh, you ARE aware that it was Putin who invaded on 24 Feb?
Easy to forget that small detail.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago

bollocks – bull testicles I think – anyone else ?? Tis a bit lazy to bring bull testicles into the analysis – what about ego driven greed and wilfully ignorant criminal hyper irresponsibily ??

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

Excellent!

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago

This evil war, made to the apocalyptic WWIII by the Evil Biden/Boris Regimes, for who knows what reason, will destroy the global economy, destroy the EU and UK economies, and rather than save, will totally destroy Ukraine.

PEACE NOW

Enough Death, destruction, maiming, destroying civilian lives and future, starving the Third World, and destroying the Global Economy.

War What Is It Good For Absolutely Nothing Lyrics[Intro]
(War, huh) Yeah!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing, uhuh
(War, huh) Yeah!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Say it again, y’all!
(War, huh) Lookout!
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Listen to me, awwwww!
[Verse 1]
War I despise
‘Cause it means destruction of innocent lives
War means tears to thousands of mothers’ eyes
When their sons go out to fight and lose their lives
I said
[Hook]
(War, huh) Good God y’all
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing, say it again
(War, huh) Lord, lord, lord, lord
(What is it good for?) Absolutely nothing
Listen to me!
[Verse 2]
(War), It ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
(War), Friend only to the undertaker, awwww
War is the enemy of all mankind
The thought of war blows my mind
War has caused unrest, within the younger generation
Induction then destruction
Who wants to die?
Awwww!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmNXzMw69zI

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago

bollocks – bull testicles I think – anyone else ?? Tis a bit lazy to bring bull testicles into the analysis – what about ego driven greed and wilfully ignorant criminal hyper irresponsibily ??

Fletcher Christian
Fletcher Christian
1 year ago

To re-phrase Blackadders famous quote…

The plan was to create a series of interconnected energy interdependent semi-sovereign states ruled by a globalist managerial class, distanced from the electorate by a vast bureaucracy, thereby avoiding the possibility of war. There was just one problem with the plan….. it was bollox.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago

Why is the EU complaining about America behaving in exactly the way the EU itself does? The protectionist practices under discussion are also the core function of EU institutions, and it is a function, notably, that Brussels isn’t even really very good at, given the colossal cost and damage that its serial mistakes cause, such as the Euro, the bungled Brexit saga (yes, it was bungled on the EU side as well as the UK’s), the migration fiasco, the adoption of Green politics to achieve nothing except expensive and unreliable energy, deindustrialisation and dangerous geo-strategic dependencies etc.

What the EU is complaining about, really, is that when America decides to play the EU at its own game, America keeps winning. “Not fair!” shout the Eurocrats, but honestly who in their right minds cares when the Brussels corruptocracy cries foul?

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago

Why is the EU complaining about America behaving in exactly the way the EU itself does? The protectionist practices under discussion are also the core function of EU institutions, and it is a function, notably, that Brussels isn’t even really very good at, given the colossal cost and damage that its serial mistakes cause, such as the Euro, the bungled Brexit saga (yes, it was bungled on the EU side as well as the UK’s), the migration fiasco, the adoption of Green politics to achieve nothing except expensive and unreliable energy, deindustrialisation and dangerous geo-strategic dependencies etc.

What the EU is complaining about, really, is that when America decides to play the EU at its own game, America keeps winning. “Not fair!” shout the Eurocrats, but honestly who in their right minds cares when the Brussels corruptocracy cries foul?

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago

Any thinking would be welcome at this point. It was depressing that at the recent G20 Sunak thought that the best way to engage with Russia was not to talk to Lavarov but to give him a “really hard” stare (immediately released on Instagram). This is playground stuff. Lavarov is not an ex-KGB goon: he is a highly intelligent career diplomat with whom we could at least begin a discussion, but that would involve some leadership rather than posturing.

stephen archer
stephen archer
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Lavrov may be highly intelligent but the only intelligence he demonstrates in his outpourings and posturing (too) is the need to conform to his leader’s strategy and mentality. His other alternative in terms of intelligence would be to defect.

Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

To be fair, Lavrov’s calculation is whether he’d rather die from defenstration, polonium or piano wire.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Feeble, childish sneer-stuff more worthy of the DT than UnHerd. As a career Russian diplomat and a loyal Russian, I expect Mr Lavrov has Russia’s eternal geostrategic interests at heart. These will not be served by abandoning the ethnic Russian Donbas and the Crimea and its Black Sea ports to the USSA-NATO, let alone allowing Russia to become an emasculated, deracinated, LGBTQPZMAP??++ BLM-kneeling Queer Studies cultural and ‘security’ colony of Wall Street and Palo Alto on the Airstrip One/ Canada/ Australia pattern.

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Feeble, childish sneer-stuff more worthy of the DT than UnHerd. As a career Russian diplomat and a loyal Russian, I expect Mr Lavrov has Russia’s eternal geostrategic interests at heart. These will not be served by abandoning the ethnic Russian Donbas and the Crimea and its Black Sea ports to the USSA-NATO, let alone allowing Russia to become an emasculated, deracinated, LGBTQPZMAP??++ BLM-kneeling Queer Studies cultural and ‘security’ colony of Wall Street and Palo Alto on the Airstrip One/ Canada/ Australia pattern.

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago
Reply to  stephen archer

To be fair, Lavrov’s calculation is whether he’d rather die from defenstration, polonium or piano wire.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Yes. When you look at educated, shrewd men such as Putin and Lavrov, and then compare them with clowns, idiots, weirdos, and rubbish like Biden, Harris, von der Leyen, May, Truss, Johnson, Ellwood, Fallon, Mordaunt and ‘Sir’ Gavin Williamson, it really is quite embarrassing. Are these risible comedy characters the best the western party electoral charade system can produce? Utterly pathetic lightweights. A ‘hard stare’ from Rishi Sunak? Jeez, Sergei Lavrov must have been trembling in his boots….

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Always wise to suck up to “dear comrades” Vova and Serge.
But Putin’s only real education was in the KGB. His “legal degree” came from a plagiarized paper.
Since his KGB job mostly involved running agents, the only model he had was to convert the oligarchs into a spy ring, and govern Russia that way.
Creating a real, western style economy was thus impossible. It would have quickly resulted in a large middle class, anxious to protect itself, not Putin.
The result has been the stagnation of the last 10 years.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Always wise to suck up to “dear comrades” Vova and Serge.
But Putin’s only real education was in the KGB. His “legal degree” came from a plagiarized paper.
Since his KGB job mostly involved running agents, the only model he had was to convert the oligarchs into a spy ring, and govern Russia that way.
Creating a real, western style economy was thus impossible. It would have quickly resulted in a large middle class, anxious to protect itself, not Putin.
The result has been the stagnation of the last 10 years.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Although I realize in some circles criticizing those in power is forbidden, fact is, Lavrov now has zero effect on Russian foreign policy.
To think otherwise is naive.
But if you all your faith in the Power Verticle, I guess it doesn’t matter.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
stephen archer
stephen archer
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Lavrov may be highly intelligent but the only intelligence he demonstrates in his outpourings and posturing (too) is the need to conform to his leader’s strategy and mentality. His other alternative in terms of intelligence would be to defect.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Yes. When you look at educated, shrewd men such as Putin and Lavrov, and then compare them with clowns, idiots, weirdos, and rubbish like Biden, Harris, von der Leyen, May, Truss, Johnson, Ellwood, Fallon, Mordaunt and ‘Sir’ Gavin Williamson, it really is quite embarrassing. Are these risible comedy characters the best the western party electoral charade system can produce? Utterly pathetic lightweights. A ‘hard stare’ from Rishi Sunak? Jeez, Sergei Lavrov must have been trembling in his boots….

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonathan Nash

Although I realize in some circles criticizing those in power is forbidden, fact is, Lavrov now has zero effect on Russian foreign policy.
To think otherwise is naive.
But if you all your faith in the Power Verticle, I guess it doesn’t matter.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 year ago

Any thinking would be welcome at this point. It was depressing that at the recent G20 Sunak thought that the best way to engage with Russia was not to talk to Lavarov but to give him a “really hard” stare (immediately released on Instagram). This is playground stuff. Lavarov is not an ex-KGB goon: he is a highly intelligent career diplomat with whom we could at least begin a discussion, but that would involve some leadership rather than posturing.

Max Price
Max Price
1 year ago

If the EU wasn’t so neoliberal it could follow America’s lead and instigate it’s own policies designed to restore its industrial base.

Charlie Dibsdale
Charlie Dibsdale
1 year ago
Reply to  Max Price

One of Guy Verhofstadt’s criticisms of the UK leaving the EU was that only the EU was big enough to counter the large power blocks in the world such as the US, China & Russia. This is laughable when you consider the EU ruling elites have been the wisest set of incompetents who over decades have exposed themselves to industrial, energy and political blackmail. The UK also needs to get fracking and reduce our energy costs, our government does need to get real, but thank god we are not tied to the EU!

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Max Price

The EU leadership and the American leadership aren’t THAT far apart, but the realities of domestic politics limit what the neoliberals can do in the US. The US system does not favor large, dense, population centers in terms of power. Many of the people that wrote the Constitution, particularly Thomas Jefferson, feared urban mob rule to such a degree that there probably wouldn’t be a USA had there not been concessions, such as the electoral college and a Senate that apportions members by state, that put urban areas at a disadvantage. This is a feature, not a bug. I have little doubt that Biden, or rather his establishment puppeteers, would lift the China tariffs, push TPP through the Senate, and go back to how things were in 2015 if he could. He can’t though, because rural America would put a Republican in the white house, and they have no influence over who because the Republican nomination process is much harder to control than the Democratic one. In other words, they might get Trump, but they might also get something much worse, an actual populist, and trust me, there is NOTHING the global neoliberal establishment fears more than a real populist in the White House. They are only adopting a bare minimum of protectionism in an attempt to stave off a much more sweeping revolution and/or shift a significant portion of the blame to foreign enemies, China/Russia.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Yep. Imagine if Tulsi Gabbard of Bernie Sanders had been elected POTUS. Either would have got the same universal MSM smear treatment as Trump did, BBC, NYT, WaPo, CNN, MSNBC and all.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Yep. Imagine if Tulsi Gabbard of Bernie Sanders had been elected POTUS. Either would have got the same universal MSM smear treatment as Trump did, BBC, NYT, WaPo, CNN, MSNBC and all.

Charlie Dibsdale
Charlie Dibsdale
1 year ago
Reply to  Max Price

One of Guy Verhofstadt’s criticisms of the UK leaving the EU was that only the EU was big enough to counter the large power blocks in the world such as the US, China & Russia. This is laughable when you consider the EU ruling elites have been the wisest set of incompetents who over decades have exposed themselves to industrial, energy and political blackmail. The UK also needs to get fracking and reduce our energy costs, our government does need to get real, but thank god we are not tied to the EU!

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Max Price

The EU leadership and the American leadership aren’t THAT far apart, but the realities of domestic politics limit what the neoliberals can do in the US. The US system does not favor large, dense, population centers in terms of power. Many of the people that wrote the Constitution, particularly Thomas Jefferson, feared urban mob rule to such a degree that there probably wouldn’t be a USA had there not been concessions, such as the electoral college and a Senate that apportions members by state, that put urban areas at a disadvantage. This is a feature, not a bug. I have little doubt that Biden, or rather his establishment puppeteers, would lift the China tariffs, push TPP through the Senate, and go back to how things were in 2015 if he could. He can’t though, because rural America would put a Republican in the white house, and they have no influence over who because the Republican nomination process is much harder to control than the Democratic one. In other words, they might get Trump, but they might also get something much worse, an actual populist, and trust me, there is NOTHING the global neoliberal establishment fears more than a real populist in the White House. They are only adopting a bare minimum of protectionism in an attempt to stave off a much more sweeping revolution and/or shift a significant portion of the blame to foreign enemies, China/Russia.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Max Price
Max Price
1 year ago

If the EU wasn’t so neoliberal it could follow America’s lead and instigate it’s own policies designed to restore its industrial base.

Steve White
Steve White
1 year ago

When Germany was thinking of getting out of line with the American agenda, suddenly their gas pipelines were blown up. At the same time German railway was “sabotaged”. Getting out of bed with the US will be like breaking up with an abusive boyfriend who threatens to kill you if you do. Unless Europe does it all together it won’t happen. 

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve White

By structure and definition the EU can only do it ‘together’. And regarding ‘abusive relationships’, ask the UK how that went with its withdrawal from the EU.

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve White

When Zalenski and Potin were to have peace talks very early Boris (Biden’s mini-me) flew to Kiev and stopped any chance of Peace (He bought this war $$$$ ££££££) EVIL!

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve White

By structure and definition the EU can only do it ‘together’. And regarding ‘abusive relationships’, ask the UK how that went with its withdrawal from the EU.

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve White

When Zalenski and Potin were to have peace talks very early Boris (Biden’s mini-me) flew to Kiev and stopped any chance of Peace (He bought this war $$$$ ££££££) EVIL!

Steve White
Steve White
1 year ago

When Germany was thinking of getting out of line with the American agenda, suddenly their gas pipelines were blown up. At the same time German railway was “sabotaged”. Getting out of bed with the US will be like breaking up with an abusive boyfriend who threatens to kill you if you do. Unless Europe does it all together it won’t happen. 

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago

Aye Biden’s (American Democrats) proxy war. Did Biden not suggest that a limited incursion into Ukraine by Putin would be tolerable?
MSM have ignored this totally. Wake up Europe, rid yourselves of the communists and their little helpers (Climate Change and Woke policies), They have destroyed your common sense and you now do their deceitful bidding.
The next moron to damage a priceless work of art should be given flying lesson without the benefit of an aircraft.

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

Too the ‘person’ who voted me down, be brave enough to reply if you think I’m wrong. Or are you just behaving typically as all cowards do.
Did Biden not say that???

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

There’s one in every crowd, and you did pretty well on the up-votes!

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

There’s one in every crowd, and you did pretty well on the up-votes!

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

The social media, MSM, and education leadership, and entertainment industries gave us this leadership.

The true evil in the world is in the few hands of Social Media, Gates Foundation, and MSM – just a couple men and the world is wrecked. They rigged the voting in 2020, they gave us the covid response, they gave us this WWIII. They should be for the rest of their lives in a Supermax cell.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

um – surely the root cause is that Joe Lunchbox cant be bothered to investigate what is REALLY going on in his world – and is thereby able to be easily manipulated . Socrates 101- buggerall has changed in 2700 years and now it is the phase of watching the slow disintegration of the roman/ western-liberal-capitalist empire . Some of us are damn lucky to have safe seats from which to watch said disintegration whilst amassing our sleeping pills etc – hopefully without vulnerable offspring. Some of us were smart/lucky enough not to produce said vulnerable offspring – or if they did said offspring sensibly did not reproduce further – OR am I overly pessimistic – I would like to think so – but twill be hard work refuting much of the above. If one does have vulnerable offspring maybe the only sensible plan is to bring them close by and work as a multigenerational coping/survival/flourishing unit ???

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  chris sullivan

Having more offspring was always the answer. Not doing that is actively contributing to your demise; there will be no bulwark to provide a defense.

Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  chris sullivan

Having more offspring was always the answer. Not doing that is actively contributing to your demise; there will be no bulwark to provide a defense.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

um – surely the root cause is that Joe Lunchbox cant be bothered to investigate what is REALLY going on in his world – and is thereby able to be easily manipulated . Socrates 101- buggerall has changed in 2700 years and now it is the phase of watching the slow disintegration of the roman/ western-liberal-capitalist empire . Some of us are damn lucky to have safe seats from which to watch said disintegration whilst amassing our sleeping pills etc – hopefully without vulnerable offspring. Some of us were smart/lucky enough not to produce said vulnerable offspring – or if they did said offspring sensibly did not reproduce further – OR am I overly pessimistic – I would like to think so – but twill be hard work refuting much of the above. If one does have vulnerable offspring maybe the only sensible plan is to bring them close by and work as a multigenerational coping/survival/flourishing unit ???

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

Too the ‘person’ who voted me down, be brave enough to reply if you think I’m wrong. Or are you just behaving typically as all cowards do.
Did Biden not say that???

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy O'Gorman

The social media, MSM, and education leadership, and entertainment industries gave us this leadership.

The true evil in the world is in the few hands of Social Media, Gates Foundation, and MSM – just a couple men and the world is wrecked. They rigged the voting in 2020, they gave us the covid response, they gave us this WWIII. They should be for the rest of their lives in a Supermax cell.

Andy O'Gorman
Andy O'Gorman
1 year ago

Aye Biden’s (American Democrats) proxy war. Did Biden not suggest that a limited incursion into Ukraine by Putin would be tolerable?
MSM have ignored this totally. Wake up Europe, rid yourselves of the communists and their little helpers (Climate Change and Woke policies), They have destroyed your common sense and you now do their deceitful bidding.
The next moron to damage a priceless work of art should be given flying lesson without the benefit of an aircraft.

Rod McLaughlin
Rod McLaughlin
1 year ago

Sanctions kill — we’ve known that for a long time (just ask the Iraqis); these, however, are probably the first sanctions in history that could kill the sanctioners.

Genius.

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Rod McLaughlin

These sanctions will destroy the Economies, and a lost decade at a minimum; although I suspect this war’s economic fallout in the West will mean the young of the West will never have pensions, secure jobs, or homeownership. I think we many have destroyed a generation between the Insane covid response and this WWIII.

Biden/Boris have destroyed the future of the young as well as the present.

Seeing Boris sitting on the front bench grinning and gesturing and smirking – seeing Bidens face in a twisted rage when something he does not like is said – I see pure evil in these men. They have brought destruction on the world equal to any in history – what they have wrought has no end in sight, it may never end and go back to the prosperity and security of 2019.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

see my comment above….

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas Moze

see my comment above….

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Rod McLaughlin

These sanctions will destroy the Economies, and a lost decade at a minimum; although I suspect this war’s economic fallout in the West will mean the young of the West will never have pensions, secure jobs, or homeownership. I think we many have destroyed a generation between the Insane covid response and this WWIII.

Biden/Boris have destroyed the future of the young as well as the present.

Seeing Boris sitting on the front bench grinning and gesturing and smirking – seeing Bidens face in a twisted rage when something he does not like is said – I see pure evil in these men. They have brought destruction on the world equal to any in history – what they have wrought has no end in sight, it may never end and go back to the prosperity and security of 2019.

Rod McLaughlin
Rod McLaughlin
1 year ago

Sanctions kill — we’ve known that for a long time (just ask the Iraqis); these, however, are probably the first sanctions in history that could kill the sanctioners.

Genius.

Dominic Turner
Dominic Turner
1 year ago

The Biden Cleptocracy commands that we:
— Fight to the last Ukrainian
— Embargo Russia to the last European pensioner
— Say things we all knew to be false 5 minutes ago
Our leaders can’t mentally process the fact that Orange Man was right.
Trump Derangement Syndrome has been the most effective psychological operation ever devised, preventing anyone examining the Ukrainian Corruption project. Iraq was a trial run for the global scale military industrial complex scam that started with Biden-Burisma under Obama and is now spiraling the world into economic collapse and war.
The long march through our digital platforms has given a global thought control tool to the most unhinged, callous and despotic. There is no end to the corruption East and West and speaking the truth has indeed become a revolutionary act.
Things do not always get better – we are entering the de-enlightenment.

Last edited 1 year ago by Dominic Turner
Dominic Turner
Dominic Turner
1 year ago

The Biden Cleptocracy commands that we:
— Fight to the last Ukrainian
— Embargo Russia to the last European pensioner
— Say things we all knew to be false 5 minutes ago
Our leaders can’t mentally process the fact that Orange Man was right.
Trump Derangement Syndrome has been the most effective psychological operation ever devised, preventing anyone examining the Ukrainian Corruption project. Iraq was a trial run for the global scale military industrial complex scam that started with Biden-Burisma under Obama and is now spiraling the world into economic collapse and war.
The long march through our digital platforms has given a global thought control tool to the most unhinged, callous and despotic. There is no end to the corruption East and West and speaking the truth has indeed become a revolutionary act.
Things do not always get better – we are entering the de-enlightenment.

Last edited 1 year ago by Dominic Turner
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

I think American, those that trade, manufacture, create or market are classic opportunists. They’ll see an opportunity that benefits them in any situation and seize it, They are essentially commercial animals. They don’t really have alliances, a global philosophy or a sense of ethics. In the first stage of any conflict they’ll begin talking about human rights, the enemy of freedom loving people and building a safer world. But that’s just the door being opened for the bottom feeders. The US will do very well out of Ukraine.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Interesting that they jump from one conflict to the next. Never ending wars and proxy wars. Hmm. I wonder why?

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

INGSOC

‘War is Peace’
‘Freedom is Slavery’

‘Ignorance is Strength’

If you look at the USA Democrat Party policies you see these are exactly what they stand for!

War in Ukraine is Peace

Critical Race Theory

The education/University/MSM. Social Media produce ignorance

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Nothing new there, of course. The USSA started out on this course with the fabricated bombing of the USS Maine in 1898 and the Spanish-American War. And they set out on that soon after completing the violent seizure their own entire territory (bar Florida and Alaska). Britain made a great geopolitical mistake in not seizing its own opportunity and allying with the Confederacy in 1861, using its heavy Naval and industrial resources to break the United States into manageable pieces once and for all.

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Trump didn’t though…

Jonas Moze
Jonas Moze
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

INGSOC

‘War is Peace’
‘Freedom is Slavery’

‘Ignorance is Strength’

If you look at the USA Democrat Party policies you see these are exactly what they stand for!

War in Ukraine is Peace

Critical Race Theory

The education/University/MSM. Social Media produce ignorance

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Nothing new there, of course. The USSA started out on this course with the fabricated bombing of the USS Maine in 1898 and the Spanish-American War. And they set out on that soon after completing the violent seizure their own entire territory (bar Florida and Alaska). Britain made a great geopolitical mistake in not seizing its own opportunity and allying with the Confederacy in 1861, using its heavy Naval and industrial resources to break the United States into manageable pieces once and for all.

Last edited 1 year ago by Peter Joy
Kat L
Kat L
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Trump didn’t though…

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Free market economics is all about opportunity. Why do you describe it in terms that imply something sinister? It is the bedrock of the prosperity we all enjoy.

As for the USA not having alliances, the quote in the article by Kissinger was merely a repeat of Lord Palmerston’s own expression of exactly the same concept many years before applied to the UK, and it is of course an agnostic principle of nation-state diplomacy and statecraft in any case. America is under no particular obligation to apologise for it.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I’m not suggesting that there’s something sinister about free market economics. I’m just making an observation about American behaviour in international affairs. In this case their “free market” policy is investment in death, destruction and international instability. The prosperity “we all” enjoy does not apply to those living in war zones.

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

I don’t think America is deliberately investing in global instability itself, that is hardly in its interests. It’s certainly arguable that America cynically tries to settle local power disputes in its own favour and gets it wrong too often for comfort, I would certainly say that argument has some merit.

But really America is simply trying to make the world a peaceful place with the global economy ordered in such a way that the USA sits at the top of it. Given that there is no alternative to some superpower doing this except for global war, I think it’s probably better that it’s the USA at the top. The UK has been too small for a century to take on the challenge (and we were considerably more brutal about it when we could do it), the EU is a global joke, and China would destroy democracy across most of the planet.

The point here is to count the – admittedly meagre – blessings that the existing USA hegemony represents. There are no alternatives in which nations all happily rub along with each other, no easy choices. It’s a hard fact of life, but there it is.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I am afraid you are brutally correct

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

It’s also a hard fact of life to acknowledge that if not for the U.S., most Brits would likely have a German accent by now.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Do you mean rather like the Royal Family?

Iris C
Iris C
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

I would dispute that! It was Hitler deciding to invade Russia (seemingly ignorant of Napoleon’s disastrous campaign) that was the beginning of the end for Germany. It might have taken longer if the US had not joined the fray but right would have prevailed.
Also, Italy surrendered in 1943, and that meant Germany increasing its area of conflict down through Italy to North Africa, thinning its military resources

Last edited 1 year ago by Iris C
Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

Ah … the Soviet regime didn’t like to be reminded of it, but it was the material aid from the US, shipped at great cost to the USSR, that made the difference. This has been recognized by no less great a war celebrity than Marshal Zhukov, who marveled at the 350,000 first-class American vehicles, the gunpowder and ammunition, the rolled steel without which not many Russian tanks could have been built … See Robert Conquest, ‘The Dragons of Expectation’, p. 132. Of course, we should not ignore the enormous cost in Soviet lives on that front — three times the war dead that Germany suffered — but then, ruthlessness with human life has always been a hallmark of Russian war policy. Just like right now.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Iris C

Ah … the Soviet regime didn’t like to be reminded of it, but it was the material aid from the US, shipped at great cost to the USSR, that made the difference. This has been recognized by no less great a war celebrity than Marshal Zhukov, who marveled at the 350,000 first-class American vehicles, the gunpowder and ammunition, the rolled steel without which not many Russian tanks could have been built … See Robert Conquest, ‘The Dragons of Expectation’, p. 132. Of course, we should not ignore the enormous cost in Soviet lives on that front — three times the war dead that Germany suffered — but then, ruthlessness with human life has always been a hallmark of Russian war policy. Just like right now.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Tosh. This was in fact, until 1914, a very much Germanophile country: the Hanoverian connection and much more, music, science, trade and industry. Had it not been for US gold and supplies to France and Britain, the Great War would likely have terminated in 1917 in, essentially, a draw or a negotiated peace moderately to Prussia-Germany advantage, with a lot of lives and money owed to Wall Street saved and the British Empire not fundamentally weakened. And there would have been no second instalment a generation later.
German accents? Utter bosh. The idea of a successful German invasion in the second war is as militarily preposterous as it was in 1915. British Naval superiority, German lack of resources, logistical feebleness and amphibious inexperience and murderous British beach defences and defence in depth made Seelowe a complete non-starter. Though had a Nazi invasion succeeded, the plans were clear and did not include accent coaching: the whole UK male population between 14 and 45 was to be deported for slave labour.
And FTIW, what ‘most Brits’ have ended up with is American accents instead, in the sense of Woke US culture and values.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Well said Guardsmen 33 Joy!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

Well said Guardsmen 33 Joy!

Glyn R
Glyn R
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Didn’t Russia also play a rather important role in beating the Nazis?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Glyn R

75% :costing about 20-25 million dead, to our approximately 450,000 dead.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Glyn R

75% :costing about 20-25 million dead, to our approximately 450,000 dead.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Do you mean rather like the Royal Family?

Iris C
Iris C
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

I would dispute that! It was Hitler deciding to invade Russia (seemingly ignorant of Napoleon’s disastrous campaign) that was the beginning of the end for Germany. It might have taken longer if the US had not joined the fray but right would have prevailed.
Also, Italy surrendered in 1943, and that meant Germany increasing its area of conflict down through Italy to North Africa, thinning its military resources

Last edited 1 year ago by Iris C
Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Tosh. This was in fact, until 1914, a very much Germanophile country: the Hanoverian connection and much more, music, science, trade and industry. Had it not been for US gold and supplies to France and Britain, the Great War would likely have terminated in 1917 in, essentially, a draw or a negotiated peace moderately to Prussia-Germany advantage, with a lot of lives and money owed to Wall Street saved and the British Empire not fundamentally weakened. And there would have been no second instalment a generation later.
German accents? Utter bosh. The idea of a successful German invasion in the second war is as militarily preposterous as it was in 1915. British Naval superiority, German lack of resources, logistical feebleness and amphibious inexperience and murderous British beach defences and defence in depth made Seelowe a complete non-starter. Though had a Nazi invasion succeeded, the plans were clear and did not include accent coaching: the whole UK male population between 14 and 45 was to be deported for slave labour.
And FTIW, what ‘most Brits’ have ended up with is American accents instead, in the sense of Woke US culture and values.

Glyn R
Glyn R
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Didn’t Russia also play a rather important role in beating the Nazis?

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I should be a bit clearer; I don’t think America is deliberately investing in global instability and that it hopes to profit from that. What it does do is act without concern for consequences to others. But as Ethniciodo says the reality is brutal and as you say there is no alternative to US hegemony, not one that is better anyway. But I fear that Ukraine will not come out of this well. When the US is ready they will just walk away from things. Though Ukraine is not like Afghanistan. There are still powerful geopolitical interests in Ukraine and until we reach the collapse, which is what I imagine, we will not know how these interests play out.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I am afraid you are brutally correct

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

It’s also a hard fact of life to acknowledge that if not for the U.S., most Brits would likely have a German accent by now.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I should be a bit clearer; I don’t think America is deliberately investing in global instability and that it hopes to profit from that. What it does do is act without concern for consequences to others. But as Ethniciodo says the reality is brutal and as you say there is no alternative to US hegemony, not one that is better anyway. But I fear that Ukraine will not come out of this well. When the US is ready they will just walk away from things. Though Ukraine is not like Afghanistan. There are still powerful geopolitical interests in Ukraine and until we reach the collapse, which is what I imagine, we will not know how these interests play out.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

I don’t think America is deliberately investing in global instability itself, that is hardly in its interests. It’s certainly arguable that America cynically tries to settle local power disputes in its own favour and gets it wrong too often for comfort, I would certainly say that argument has some merit.

But really America is simply trying to make the world a peaceful place with the global economy ordered in such a way that the USA sits at the top of it. Given that there is no alternative to some superpower doing this except for global war, I think it’s probably better that it’s the USA at the top. The UK has been too small for a century to take on the challenge (and we were considerably more brutal about it when we could do it), the EU is a global joke, and China would destroy democracy across most of the planet.

The point here is to count the – admittedly meagre – blessings that the existing USA hegemony represents. There are no alternatives in which nations all happily rub along with each other, no easy choices. It’s a hard fact of life, but there it is.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

I’m not suggesting that there’s something sinister about free market economics. I’m just making an observation about American behaviour in international affairs. In this case their “free market” policy is investment in death, destruction and international instability. The prosperity “we all” enjoy does not apply to those living in war zones.

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Simon South
Simon South
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“come into my parlour said the spider to the fly”

The last 150 years surely, has shown the only true ally of the US is the US. Cast your eye across the globe and you see a repeating story of political usefulness leading to a buddying up. End of usefulness = “drop them like a stone” – South America, the middle East, the far East, North Africa – watch out Europe your next !

Mr Bellisarius
Mr Bellisarius
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

So a German run Europe would have been better for all, and there would have been no subsequent internal conflict.
You learn something new every day.

Jacqueline Burns
Jacqueline Burns
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

And, yes, I hope you are being ironic!

Jacqueline Burns
Jacqueline Burns
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr Bellisarius

And, yes, I hope you are being ironic!

Terry M
Terry M
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

You might want to visit several cemeteries in France.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Terry M

You’re confusing the calculated self-interests of the Washington-Wall Street establishment with their willingness to sacrifice the of lives of tens of thousands of young, idealistic volunteers or more or less willing conscripts. Rick Atkinson’s Liberation Trilogy is vey strong on the original sources – diaries from everyone from Eiesnhower to PFCs in the trenches at Salerno – and the hard realities of the US experience of the second world war in N. Africa and Europe.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Terry M

You’re confusing the calculated self-interests of the Washington-Wall Street establishment with their willingness to sacrifice the of lives of tens of thousands of young, idealistic volunteers or more or less willing conscripts. Rick Atkinson’s Liberation Trilogy is vey strong on the original sources – diaries from everyone from Eiesnhower to PFCs in the trenches at Salerno – and the hard realities of the US experience of the second world war in N. Africa and Europe.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

If only they would ‘drop us like a stone’. Oh happy day…

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

It can’t work like that now. The USA isn’t able to control the world on its own anymore. It needs allies, and more to the point the UK, Europe, the rest of the Americas, Australia etc need the USA. Even if we perfect a proper coherent Western set of military and economic alliances, it’ll still be difficult to contain China. It’s a great pity we’ve fallen out with Russia, because really the Russians ought to be part of a functioning western alliance.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Mr Bellisarius
Mr Bellisarius
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

So a German run Europe would have been better for all, and there would have been no subsequent internal conflict.
You learn something new every day.

Terry M
Terry M
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

You might want to visit several cemeteries in France.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

If only they would ‘drop us like a stone’. Oh happy day…

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon South

It can’t work like that now. The USA isn’t able to control the world on its own anymore. It needs allies, and more to the point the UK, Europe, the rest of the Americas, Australia etc need the USA. Even if we perfect a proper coherent Western set of military and economic alliances, it’ll still be difficult to contain China. It’s a great pity we’ve fallen out with Russia, because really the Russians ought to be part of a functioning western alliance.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They already have. Remember Albright’s statement that it was like dealing with huge pots of money, but she wouldn’t play.

Jacqueline Burns
Jacqueline Burns
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They used to have ethics but Obama ended them!

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“After all, the chief business of the American people is business.”

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Well you could do better at it, you’re doing a very poor job all you Americans on here of understanding how business works. Business needs stability. For stability we need peace. So it might be that business is the chief business of the American people but it seems to me the problem is that you’re not actually very good at it. Your multinationals all manufacturer in China. Your silicone valley people, all invested in China. All got rich. Screwed your own manufacturing base, now you want to turn it around again. At great cost to us. Most business people understand that competition is healthy, that a free market is important for a healthy economy, America is starting to move far away from those principles by shutting off Chinese manufacturing, crippling Europe by shutting off Russia. Nopec Bill. No thank you.
We are bloody trying to run a business here in the UK. Do you understand just how serious this could get for us over here?
I could go on for hours about how it was not JUST America that won the world wars, please remember the red army were the first to Berlin, had the highest number of casualties of anyone. And while sit there on your high American horse, there’s people freezing there arses off in this country unable to afford gas, businesses that don’t know what to do from one month to the next, more like from one year to the next with covid now this. So maybe you could spare us the war victory trope, Germany is hurting too at the moment so leave off them as well. We are worried for good bloody reason, I’m putting up but I’m not shutting up. You will find the British people have already put up and shut up with your shenanagins for a long time. Remember 2008? America being good at business was that? Remember Iraq? Afghanistan? Our sons. Our daughters. It’s about time you treated us with some respect.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Unfortunately they haven’t forgiven us for thrashing them in the so called War of 1812, nor for burning the White House and all the major buildings of Washington DC to the ground in 1814.

Still “we mustn’t boast must we!”

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Thank you Mr Stanhope, do you think that’s what it is?
I think my problem is I haven’t indulged in Internet posting for a fair time before joining here and I seem to have been saving it up, but hey ho sometimes it’s just good to let it out, I think I’m nearly done with that phase.
I know I’ve already subjected you (at length) to my feelings regarding America and you’ve been very patient with me, so I’ll spare you and everyone else, anymore rants, I’ve probably embarrassed myself enough already 🙂

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Thank you Mr Stanhope, do you think that’s what it is?
I think my problem is I haven’t indulged in Internet posting for a fair time before joining here and I seem to have been saving it up, but hey ho sometimes it’s just good to let it out, I think I’m nearly done with that phase.
I know I’ve already subjected you (at length) to my feelings regarding America and you’ve been very patient with me, so I’ll spare you and everyone else, anymore rants, I’ve probably embarrassed myself enough already 🙂

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Unfortunately they haven’t forgiven us for thrashing them in the so called War of 1812, nor for burning the White House and all the major buildings of Washington DC to the ground in 1814.

Still “we mustn’t boast must we!”

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Warren Trees

Well you could do better at it, you’re doing a very poor job all you Americans on here of understanding how business works. Business needs stability. For stability we need peace. So it might be that business is the chief business of the American people but it seems to me the problem is that you’re not actually very good at it. Your multinationals all manufacturer in China. Your silicone valley people, all invested in China. All got rich. Screwed your own manufacturing base, now you want to turn it around again. At great cost to us. Most business people understand that competition is healthy, that a free market is important for a healthy economy, America is starting to move far away from those principles by shutting off Chinese manufacturing, crippling Europe by shutting off Russia. Nopec Bill. No thank you.
We are bloody trying to run a business here in the UK. Do you understand just how serious this could get for us over here?
I could go on for hours about how it was not JUST America that won the world wars, please remember the red army were the first to Berlin, had the highest number of casualties of anyone. And while sit there on your high American horse, there’s people freezing there arses off in this country unable to afford gas, businesses that don’t know what to do from one month to the next, more like from one year to the next with covid now this. So maybe you could spare us the war victory trope, Germany is hurting too at the moment so leave off them as well. We are worried for good bloody reason, I’m putting up but I’m not shutting up. You will find the British people have already put up and shut up with your shenanagins for a long time. Remember 2008? America being good at business was that? Remember Iraq? Afghanistan? Our sons. Our daughters. It’s about time you treated us with some respect.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Interesting that they jump from one conflict to the next. Never ending wars and proxy wars. Hmm. I wonder why?

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Free market economics is all about opportunity. Why do you describe it in terms that imply something sinister? It is the bedrock of the prosperity we all enjoy.

As for the USA not having alliances, the quote in the article by Kissinger was merely a repeat of Lord Palmerston’s own expression of exactly the same concept many years before applied to the UK, and it is of course an agnostic principle of nation-state diplomacy and statecraft in any case. America is under no particular obligation to apologise for it.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Simon South
Simon South
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“come into my parlour said the spider to the fly”

The last 150 years surely, has shown the only true ally of the US is the US. Cast your eye across the globe and you see a repeating story of political usefulness leading to a buddying up. End of usefulness = “drop them like a stone” – South America, the middle East, the far East, North Africa – watch out Europe your next !

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They already have. Remember Albright’s statement that it was like dealing with huge pots of money, but she wouldn’t play.

Jacqueline Burns
Jacqueline Burns
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They used to have ethics but Obama ended them!

Warren Trees
Warren Trees
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

“After all, the chief business of the American people is business.”

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

I think American, those that trade, manufacture, create or market are classic opportunists. They’ll see an opportunity that benefits them in any situation and seize it, They are essentially commercial animals. They don’t really have alliances, a global philosophy or a sense of ethics. In the first stage of any conflict they’ll begin talking about human rights, the enemy of freedom loving people and building a safer world. But that’s just the door being opened for the bottom feeders. The US will do very well out of Ukraine.

Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago

You can’t reason with a paranoid maniac. Putin may be strategic (though the evidence is increasingly shaky) but his premise – that Russia needs a buffer zone against Western invasion – is born of a delusion.

Granted, Russia has been invaded in the past (though in the 40s only after itself carving up Poland with Hitler) – but for the past eighty years the only invasions in have been the Russians pushing their troops into Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Finland, Georgia, Ukraine…

The fact that Eastern European want Nato membership isn’t NATO forcing itself on those countries, it’s a rational response to having a domineering, paranoid, heavily armed, expansionist, economically self-f*cked neighbour – whose people, a majority at least, seem happy to be led by a psychopath.

Gordon Arta
Gordon Arta
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

A far more realistic summary than the article itself.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Quite right. I upvoted you, but then your total upvotes went down instead of up. Peculiar, and not my fault.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Maybe joining NATO will give them more security. But I don’t understand why NATO would not help a country even if it was not part of NATO and being invaded by another state? Why must they be part of NATO to be considered a victim of another power and needing support?

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Gordon Arta
Gordon Arta
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

A far more realistic summary than the article itself.

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Quite right. I upvoted you, but then your total upvotes went down instead of up. Peculiar, and not my fault.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert Kaye

Maybe joining NATO will give them more security. But I don’t understand why NATO would not help a country even if it was not part of NATO and being invaded by another state? Why must they be part of NATO to be considered a victim of another power and needing support?

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago

You can’t reason with a paranoid maniac. Putin may be strategic (though the evidence is increasingly shaky) but his premise – that Russia needs a buffer zone against Western invasion – is born of a delusion.

Granted, Russia has been invaded in the past (though in the 40s only after itself carving up Poland with Hitler) – but for the past eighty years the only invasions in have been the Russians pushing their troops into Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Finland, Georgia, Ukraine…

The fact that Eastern European want Nato membership isn’t NATO forcing itself on those countries, it’s a rational response to having a domineering, paranoid, heavily armed, expansionist, economically self-f*cked neighbour – whose people, a majority at least, seem happy to be led by a psychopath.

Gary Baxter
Gary Baxter
1 year ago

No two countries, ever, share exactly the same interests, but there’re other things to care for, such as cultural traditions and values. Confronted with a West-hating, illiberal and autocratic alliance of Russia, China and Iran, the USA and EU need to remember that they’re, ultimately, in the same boat.

Matt Hindman
Matt Hindman
1 year ago
Reply to  Gary Baxter

The problem is that same boat happens to be increasingly self-hating, illiberal, and autocratic.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Gary Baxter

Why would they ‘hate’ the west? They just want the USSA to leave them TF alone, for once. The USSA has spent decades meddling in all three, China (since the 1890s) and Iran (since the 1920s) in particular. Always this effort to portray people YOU hate as people who have, er, an obsession with hating you. It’s a narcissistic-psychopathic displacement fantasy.
And if the sick woke bigoted depraved intolerant degenerate ‘culture’ we have now in ‘the west’ constitutes ‘liberalism’ and our, er, ‘cultural traditions (!) and values’, chum, then you can keep it. The values of the stinking Woke campus, BBC-New York Times, rainbow LGBTQ trans-worshipping Blob bureaucracy, BLM-kneeling FA, Biden junta and the rest of it may be your ‘cultural traditions and values’, but by God they are not mine. If anyone’s standing up for the cultural traditions of civilisation, nation and hard reality, it is Putin and Russia.

Matt Hindman
Matt Hindman
1 year ago