Russia Has Won
NATO coaxed Russia into a war, and Russia won.
Last week, I wrote that Russia’s objectives in Ukraine appeared to be different than what Western intelligence agencies claimed. Russia, from the beginning of the Ukraine invasion, appeared to be annexing the eastern 1/5 to 1/3 of Ukraine. Intel agencies (and their wholly-owned news organizations) claimed Russia sought to conquer and absorb all of Ukraine, plus the Baltics, Poland, and the rest of the former Soviet Union.
But Western intel was wrong. Or they lied. Russia had two objectives in invading Ukraine:
Create a NATO-free buffer on its western border.
Break the US dollar’s reserve-currency status and replace it with a commodity-based trade system.
We can now report Russia succeeded on both fronts, and all it takes is two stories from Zero Hedge.
In When the Lies Come Home, Douglas MacGregor’s lede says it all:
After lying for months, the media are preparing the public for Ukraine’s military collapse...
The future of the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions along with the Donbas is decided. Moscow is also likely to secure Kharkov and Odessa, two cities that are historically Russian and Russian-speaking, as well as the territory that adjoins them. These operations will extend the conflict through the summer. The problem now is how to stop the fighting.
Supporting MacGregor’s report, we also learned last week that Joe Biden ordered (“ordered”) Secretary of State Blinken and the morally bankrupt Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to “tone down their rhetoric” about victory in Ukraine. From NBC News:
Biden thought the secretaries had gone too far, according to multiple administration officials familiar with the call. On the previously unreported conference call, as Austin flew to Germany and Blinken to Washington, the president expressed concern that the comments could set unrealistic expectations and increase the risk of the U.S. getting into a direct conflict with Russia. He told them to tone it down, said the officials.
“Biden was not happy when Blinken and Austin talked about winning in Ukraine,” one of them said. “He was not happy with the rhetoric.”
Meanwhile, the (mostly) false narrative of Russian atrocities, Russian losses (wildly exaggerated), and Russian economic collapse (the opposite has occurred) has filled Volodymyr Zelenskyy with hubris reminiscent of Saddam Hussein’s in the first month of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Zelenskyy apparently believes Ukraine is winning and that he can demand Russia’s full surrender (if only the US would send him more money.) Thus, Zelenskyy says, he refuses further negotiations until Russia has returned its conquered land to Ukraine, including Crimea. That ain’t gonna happen. So the fighting and killing and dying and suffering and billions of US dollars continue to flow with the blood of Ukrainians for the glory of Davos.
Russia’s military objectives are either fully realized or inevitable, and all protestations to the contrary are self-serving grifts to line the pockets of the military-industrial complex. We saw this grift in action over the weekend, as NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg demanded yesterday. Stoltenberg would have the West plunge into a Great Depression to feed his billionaire friends in the defense industry. Also, via ZeroHedge:
Western Populations Must Do More For Ukraine Even If "Costs Of Food & Fuel Are High": NATO Chief
Here we go again: top officials in the West warning their populations against "Ukraine fatigue", saying that 'sacrifices' must be made for the long-term despite the 'high costs' in blood and treasure of continuing to ramp up support for Ukraine. This time it's NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg making unusually blunt statements, addressing the common masses.
"We must prepare for the fact that it could take years. We must not let up in supporting Ukraine," he began by saying in an interview published Sunday by Germany’s Bild am Sonntag newspaper. He stressed this should be the case "even if the costs are high, not only for military support, also because of rising energy and food prices."
Did you get that? You must let your baby die of starvation and live in poverty to feed the wehrmacht’s unquenchable thirst for blood and money, you selfish vermin!
Russia has won its military objective. But what about its other objective: to destroy the USD’s stranglehold on world trade.
Here, we turn to Tom Luongo’s Gold, Goats, and Guns blog.
Russia is done with the West. The divorce is nearly complete. In the past few days we’ve heard from all major Russian leaders the same thing, “The West will play by our rules now.”
Luongo points to a recent BBC interview with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Lavrov dropped all those annoying diplomatic pretext and told the Brits how it is no no uncertain terms:
I don’t think there’s even room for maneuver left anymore,” Lavrov replied.
“Because both [Prime Minister Boris] Johnson and [Foreign Secretary Liz] Truss say publicly: ’We must defeat Russia, we must bring Russia to its knees. Go on, then, do it.”
Luongo observes that diplomats, and Russian diplomats in particular, rarely make such cut-and-dry statements, and rarely treat Western interviewers with such contempt. But Lavrov’s statement was still less clear than comments by Gazprom’s CEO, Alexei Miller, at the St. Petersberg Economic Investment Forum:
“The game of nominal value of money is over, as this system does not allow to control the supply of resources. …Our product, our rules. We don’t play by the rules we didn’t create.”
The “rules” Russia didn’t create include the USD as the world’s reserve currency. That rule was imposed on the world by the United States. And it worked well for half a century. The petrodollar allowed the West to constrain the Soviet Union’s expansion.
But when the Soviet Union fell, so did the justification for the reserve-currency status. What didn’t change with end of the Cold War was the West’s thirst for control through unlimited debt. So we doubled down on the USD. Once the Berlin Wall fell, the US would have been wise to unwind itself from the petrodollar. Instead, with the help of think tanks and military planners, the US created new, often imaginary, threats to justify our financial hegemony. Our intelligence agencies produced reports meant to frighten governments and citizens into accepting the same rules used to thwart communism’s globalist ambitions. But this charade would fool the world only for so long.
At some point, the West’s strategy became globalism—a kind of globalism that looks remarkably similar to the Soviet Union’s in everything except its title. Klaus Schwab doesn’t call The Great Reset a second run at world communism because Schwab makes no pretense of worker sovereignty ,as Marxism promised. Instead, Schwab admits his goal—and the goal of Western nations in general—is a top-down dictatorship of self-defined “experts.” In other words, communism without the hope of eventual freedom.
Who would know better than the Russians what Schwab’s vision might look like were it to come to fruition? Who better than a former KGB officer like Putin to thwart the advances of Schwab and the West? If I were cynical enough, I’d say we’re witnessing a role reversal between Russia and the West. In the Cold War, we saved the world from Russian aggression; in this war, Russia could protect the world from us.
Tom Luongo describes the current situation, an assessment I agree with:
The West took their best shot at destroying Russia and missed the mark. He [Putin] clearly identified the real culprits for Europe’s and the US’s problems, subservience to an oligarch class who feel entitled to rule the world.
There will be no “Victory over Russia” parades in the US or Kyiv. The $60 billion spent on Ukraine—mostly for pork-barrel projects that had no military consequence—will have ben squandered while American parents struggle to find baby formula. That money only prolonged a war which has now claimed the lives of 10,000 Ukrainian civilians who died believing victory over Russia was just around the corner.
The aftermath of World War II was Bretton Woods and the petrodollar. The aftermath of NATO’s folly in Ukraine will be the death of that system which served the world well for 45 years but became a source of suffering once its necessity vanished.
What replaces the “rules-based” system the West imposed on the world to check communism could be even worse than the post-Cold War petrodollar. It’s possible that Communist China is allowing Russia to weaken the financial West so it can swoop in and impose its will on the world. Or, the world could fracture into dozens of warring alliances bent on stealing the resources of each other. Or, God willing, we could all go back to minding our damn business and act like grown-ups for a few centuries. Who knows?
What we do know—or strongly suspect—is that the West had a chance to wind down its Cold War machine in the 1990s. Instead, it doubled down on a soft world domination using the USD as a carrot and US troops as the stick. Now, the West, having been on a 30-year power-drunk, missed “last call" and faces the obligatory hangover. It staggers around the world looking for place to collapse.
Ours is not to prop up the drunken fighter, but to prepare ourselves for what follows. We must find a way to govern ourselves according to the natural law, the way our founders did 220 years ago.
May we find favor with God in that endeavor.