NATO: Lying All the Way to Barbarossa

Russophobia

Despite claims made during NATO Summit Warsaw 2016, that “NATO remains a fundamental source of security for our people, and stability for the wider world,” it is clear that the threats and challenges NATO poses as existing to confront are in fact threats of its own, intentional creation and continued perpetuation.

From the ongoing refugee crisis triggered by NATO’s own global-spanning and ongoing military interventions, invasions, and occupations, to its continued expansion along Russia’s borders – violating every convention and “norm” that existed during the Cold War to keep it “cold,” NATO has proven that it is to the populations it poses as protector over, in fact, their greatest threat.

In particular, the summit in Warsaw, Poland centered on NATO’s expanding military presence along Russia’s borders, particularly in the Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, as well as in Poland itself.

The summit also covered ongoing NATO involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq, two nations so far beyond the Atlantic states the alliance allegedly was founded to protect, it would be comical if the consequences of their far-reaching meddling weren’t so serious.

Belligerence Vs Balance 

Global peace and stability is tenuously maintained through a careful balancing act between conflicting centers of power. The story of human history is that of this balancing act being performed.

World War II, which gave way to the current international order we live in, came about because of a fundamental failure to maintain this balancing act.

Perhaps the most troublesome aspect of World War II’s genesis, was the German military build-up along the then Soviet Union’s borders characterized by Berlin at the time as a means of collective defense for Europe, when in fact it was the lead up to a full-scale invasion known now as “Operation Barbarossa.” It is troublesome particularly because NATO is currently building up its forces in almost precisely the same areas and in almost precisely the same manner Nazi Germany did in the 1930s.

When German forces crossed into Russia on June 22, 1941, a potential balance of power meant to preserve Germany and the rest of Europe against perceived Soviet menace turned into a war that devastated both Europe and Russia.

The subsequent Cold War is an example of a balancing act of power being performed mostly with success. However, despite many common misconceptions regarding the Cold War, the mere existence of opposing nuclear arsenals and the concept of mutually assured destruction was not why balance was maintained.

Instead, balance was maintained by an immense framework, painstakingly constructed by both American and Soviet leaders, at the cost of both nations’ egos, pride, and interests and involved everything from agreements about the weaponization of space, to the composition and deployment of their nuclear arsenals, and even regarding defense systems designed to protect against nuclear first strikes.

There were also specific and complex agreements arranged over the deployment of troops along each respective center of powers’ borders, including the borders of nations that existed within their spheres of influence.

It was clear during the Cold War that both Washington and Moscow vied to expand their respective reach over the rest of the world, resulting in proxy wars everywhere from the Middle East to South America, and from Africa to Asia in a “low-intensity” bid – relative to all-out nuclear war – to gain the upper-hand.

Preceding and in the wake of the Soviet Union’s collapse, tentacles of Western influence had finally prevailed, and reached deep within Russia itself, eroding not only Russia’s own institutions and national sovereignty, but unsettling the global balance of power that had existed for decades after World War II.

It was only during the rise of Russian President Vladimir Putin that this trend was reversed and something resembling global balance reemerged.

It was clear that during the early 2000’s, whatever progress the US had made in dismantling the remnants of Soviet checks to its otherwise unlimited desire for global hegemony, would need to come to an end, and a new framework mirroring that of the Cold War, established to accommodate emerging global powers including the Russian Federation

But this is not what happened.

The New Build-Up 

Instead, under the administration of US President George Bush and continued under that of President Barack Obama, the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM Treaty or ABMT) was unilaterally withdrawn from by the United States.

Additionally, the United States – beginning in the 1990s and continuing until today as seen in Ukraine – has funded and backed various political coups across Eastern Europe under the guise of “promoting democracy,” installing client states along Russia’s borders. Attempts to undermine and overthrow governments continues in nations like Belarus and Azerbaijan, as well as the Central Asian states of Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

Nations successfully overthrown and co-opted by Washington have been systematically turned against Russia economically, politically, and militarily. These nations are almost immediately folded into NATO’s military alliance. In 2008 for example, the US client regime in Georgia would invade the Russian-backed republic of South Ossetia, precipitating a full-scale Russian response in what many believe was a NATO attempt to test Russian resolve. It is reminiscent of Nazi-Soviet geopolitical jousting in Finland just before Operation Barbarossa commenced.

Ukraine, overthrown in a NATO-backed putsch between 2013-2014, has also taken a hostile posture toward Russia, and again, Western military aggression, seeking Ukraine as a vector through which to strike deeper at Russia is a direct replay of events that unfolded during World War II.

The story of NATO post-Cold War has been one of confrontation, not of fostering security or stability.

Instead of working on a new framework to establish global stability by recognizing a new emerging balance of power between East and West, NATO has attempted to “race” in a reckless bid to expand its own influence as far and wide as possible before this balance of power establishes itself through the realities of military, political, and economic force

It appears that NATO may even be contemplating the destabilization and overthrow of the political order in Moscow itself with attempts to foster terrorism in Russia’s southern regions through massive NATO-backed conflicts in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, as well as the funding and support of hostile political fronts all across Russia.

A Gradient of Balance Versus a New Cold War 

The Cold War was characterized by two distinct centers of power with little room for nations to deal in anything resembling an intermediary sphere of influence.

Today, very easily, a gradient of balance can be established between North America, Europe, Russia, and Asia – where the best benefits of dealing with each other could be enjoyed by all. The only requirements would be first allowing Europe to develop a foreign policy that reflected the best interests of its own governments, people, and industry, and second, the ability for Washington, London, and Brussels to abandon their unrealistic designs toward global hegemony and opt instead for a more realistic balance of multipolar power.

NATO precludes all of this – effectively coercing Europe into a zero sum game with Russia, just as it had done during the Cold War.

Europe faces many threats. But none of them from Russia. It is flooded by refugees fleeing NATO wars. It is weathering instability in nations like Ukraine, whose political order was upended by NATO-backed political violence. And Europe is plagued by the irresponsible, reckless actions of prospective NATO members like Georgia, run by incompetent regimes installed by and for Washington’s best interests, not the stability and long-term interests of the European people.

Europe’s leadership has clearly demonstrated no interest in recognizing these realities. It will be up to the European people themselves to demand a more rational shift away from the various, intentionally manipulative strategies of tension NATO has cultivated, and toward a more sensible and independent relationship with the world beyond the Atlantic alliance.

There has been much talk of Britain’s leaving of the European Union. Perhaps it is time for the European Union to leave the long and corrosive influence of Anglo-American interests and institutions.

Until then, the people of Europe should examine closely the lessons of history of aggressive expansion toward Russia’s borders, the lies such expansion was predicated upon, and the consequences those lies had on the security and stability of Europe when finally they were exposed through the unfolding conspiracy they were designed to obfuscate.

The wheel of history turns not because our hands are on it, turning it, but because our apathy and ignorance has prevented our hands from stopping it.

About the author:

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook”.

Source: http://journal-neo.org/2016/07/11/nato-lying-all-the-way-to-barbarossa/

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Netanyahu, Palestine and Ethnic Cleansing

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Well, once again, Israeli Prime Murderer Benjamin Netanyahu astounds. One would think that there must be some limit to the bizarre statements that issue from his mouth, but no, we learn again and again that he is willing to push the bizarreness envelope to places where, like the crew of Star Trek’s Enterprise, no one has ever before ventured.

His latest flight of fancy even seems to have astonished his worshipful U.S. government, which characterized his statements as ‘inappropriate and unhelpful’, harsh criticism indeed from that bastion of Israeli love. And what is it that Mr. Netanyahu has said? This writer hesitates to even put the words to paper, they are so incredible. As has been said, ‘you can’t make this stuff up’.

But here it is: He said that he has “always been perplexed by the notion” that the “Jewish community in Judea and Samaria [the Israeli name for the West Bank] is an obstacle for peace.”

So this has always perplexed the Prime Murderer. For years, through countless, meaningless negotiations, United Nations resolutions and international boycotts, he has been unable to understand why driving people from their homes, destroying those homes to build luxury residences for people who, by living there, are in violation of international law, is an obstacle for peace.

Yet the august Prime Murderer did not stop there. No, warming to his topic, he seemed to be on quite a roll, as he said this: “The Palestinian leadership actually demands a Palestinian state with one pre-condition: No Jews. There’s a phrase for that: It’s called ethnic cleansing.”

Elizabeth Trudeau, U.S. State Department spokesperson, said this: “We obviously strongly disagree with the characterization that those who oppose settlement activity or view it as an obstacle to peace are somehow calling for ethnic cleansing of Jews from the West Bank. We believe that using that type of terminology is inappropriate and unhelpful.” And, to indicate the extreme displeasure the U.S. feels about these statements, she further criticized the ‘dramatic escalation’ of the demolition of Palestinian homes, and said that such actions “raise real questions about Israel’s long-term intentions in the West Bank.”

Now, if anyone reading this has ‘real questions about Israel’s long-term intentions in the West Bank’, please raise your hand. This writer sees no hands raised, but assumes that Ms. Trudeau, President Barack Obama, and the odious candidates representing the Tweedle-Dum and Tweedle-Dee parties, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, are not reading this essay. They may delude themselves, blinded as they are by the money thrown in their direction by AIPAC (Apartheid Israel Political Affairs Committee), that, up until now, Israel’s leaders had every intention of eventually vacating the West Bank. After all, they might say, look at all the evidence pointing in that very direction. Um, well, doesn’t the emperor have beautiful new clothes?

The uninitiated might believe that, with such blatant violations of international law and the basic human rights of millions of people, the U.S., that self-proclaimed leader of all that is good and just, would exert pressure on Israel to, in short, simply back off. After all, the U.S. sends that apartheid nation $4 billion annually, with absolutely no strings attached. Might the U.S. not, after all, attach a string or two? Perhaps saying that, if Israel wants to continue to receive the largess that the U.S. so willingly doles out, it needs to vacate the West Bank, withdraw to the internationally-accepted 1967 borders, and end the illegal blockade of the Gaza Strip. Is that really too much to ask? What real threat does Palestine, a nation with no army, navy or air force, present to a country with a powerful military machine, backed up by the most powerful?

Ah, but we are forgetting the ‘special’ relationship that the U.S. has with Israel. Yes, when millions upon millions of dollars pour into the campaign coffers of U.S. officials, each dollar of which, we should mention, has strings attached, demanding Congressional votes in whatever way Israel dictates, the relationship between the two countries is, indeed, ‘special’. International law? Not worth considering, if it’s inconvenient. Human rights for the Palestinians? Bah! Who are they? Where is their wealthy lobby?

So as Mr. Netanyahu decries what he somehow sees as Palestinian demands for a West Bank free of Jews, he drives Palestinians out of the West Bank, to build homes exclusively for Jews. While he wonders why illegal settlement activity is an obstacle to peace, more people around the world condemn it. One might think that he is trying to make it appear that, like one’s own back yard, where one can dismantle an old tool shed to build a fancy two-car garage, he is simply removing unnecessary structures on Israeli land, to build new ones. A more apt analogy might be if this writer decided the build a new, two-car garage in his next door neighbor’s back yard. As soon as the bulldozer arrived to demolish the one-car garage that is currently standing there, the police would be called, destruction prevented, and this writer would be hauled away.

But, sadly for the Prime Murderer, his particular fairy story has run out of the gold dust of credibility. No longer do people barely hear some obscure news item about Palestinian homes being demolished to make way for illegal settlements, and then listen intently to the latest, really interesting news about the Kardashians. No, more and more people are turning to social media and getting the facts, seeing the faces of suffering men, women and children, and recognizing the unspeakable injustice that is apartheid Israel.

For the past eight years, President Obama, who is said to detest Mr. Netanyahu, could certainly have made significant changes that would have elevated human rights and international law to the level of priority and significance they deserve. He did nothing. And with either Mrs. Clinton or Mr. Trump poised to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. in January, one can have little hope for change from that quarter.

But the will of the people can only be thwarted for so long. The U.S. stood in isolation for years in its support of apartheid South Africa, and is increasingly isolated in its complete toeing of the Israeli party line. Boycotts and resolutions, strengthening all the time with each new Israeli-perpetrated horror, will succeed, despite all efforts to outlaw them.

Time is running out for apartheid Israel, as it ran out for apartheid South Africa. The sooner Israel and the U.S. wake up to that fact, the sooner peace will come to the Middle East. And while peace there isn’t the goal of either rogue nation, they will have to face the inevitable.

2016-09-16

About the author:

Robert Fantina’s latest book is Empire, Racism and Genocide: a History of US Foreign Policy (Red Pill Press).

Source: http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/16/netanyahu-palestine-and-ethnic-cleansing/

Israel and Arabs

From The History of Anti-Russian Policy: The First Balkan Alliance (1866−1868)

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The creation of the First Balkan Alliance against the Ottoman Empire in 1866–1868 in the light of territorial requirements of the Balkan states and nations at the expense of the decreasing power of the Ottoman authorities and the Ottoman state integration was the first political-military treaty on the mutual cooperation by the Christian Balkan states and nations. The secret paragraphs of bilateral military-political contracts between Greece and Serbia and Serbia and Montenegro in regard to territorial inheritance of the Ottoman Empire in the Balkans are the most important points of the treaty.

Serbia became a leader of the Balkan coalition and the main champion of the idea that the “Eastern Question” had to be resolved by the Balkan peoples in the war against the Ottoman Empire without interference of the great European powers. The pivotal impetus for the making of the First Balkan Alliance came from the side of Serbia’s prince Mihailo I Obrenovic (1860−1868) whose predominate political task in the foreign policy was to create a South Slavic state under the Serbian leadership, which would be composed by all South Slavic territories in the Ottoman Empire. For that purpose he needed a cooperation of the other Balkan Christian states and the peoples as Serbia was not strong enough to solely defeat the Ottoman Empire. The most reasonable solution was to create a joint Balkan military-political defensive-offensive coalition which will military defeat the Ottoman Empire and expel the Ottoman authorities from the Balkans as a fundamental precondition for the creation of the united South Slavic state in the Balkans.  

Surely, the main diplomatic efforts of the Balkan Christian states from 1860 to 1868 was put to create a joint Balkan political-military alliance against the Ottoman Empire. The purpose of this defensive-offensive pact was to solve the “Eastern Question” without interference of the great European powers in the Balkan affair implementing the principle “the Balkans to the Balkan peoples!” This principle was founded on the axiom that each European nation, smaller or bigger, has a right to self-determination and ethnic unification into a single national state. Subsequently, the “Eastern Question” had to be resolved by expulsion of the Ottomans from the Balkans and division of their Balkan possessions among the Balkan Christians. The chief initiator for the negotiations, which should lead to the agreement of the common Balkan alliance was the Principality of Serbia. The idea of Balkan federation or confederation emerged during the negotiations as well as the plan to make in the future a united South Slavic state composed by Principality of Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Slavonia, Dalmatia, Bulgaria, Kosovo-Metohija, Thrace, Macedonia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Either the Balkan Federation/Confederation or the South Slavic/Yugoslav Empire had to be a principle guarantee for the real independent life of the Balkan nations freed from the tutorship and control by the European states especially Russia, Italy and the Habsburg Monarchy. However, in fact, such South Slavic state would be under protectorship of France and Great Britain as their Balkan colony and bulwark against especially Russian influence into the region.

The negotiations passed through two phases: I) from 1860 to 1865, and II) from 1866 to 1868. In both of them the crucial bone of contention became how to share the inheritance of the Ottoman territorial possessions in Europe. To fix the exact borders between the Balkan states after the defeat of the Ottoman army has been from that time till the end of the Second Balkan War in 1913 always a principle obstacle for the fruitful cooperation of the Balkan nations. Especially as an apple of discord appeared to be Macedonia and Bosnia-Herzegovina. The First Balkan Alliance was finally created in 1866, 1867 and 1868 by signing bilateral agreements between Serbia and Montenegro, Serbia and Romania, Serbia and Greece and by reaching the oral agreements between Serbia and the Croatian National Party, Serbia and the Bulgarian revolutionaries, Serbia and the Christian Albanian representatives and finally Romania and the Bulgarian representatives in Bucharest. The prime importance of these either signed or oral agreements is that they represent for the first time in the

17 Balkans after Berlin Congress 1878

Balkan history a regional unity politically directed towards the national liberation. These agreements were reached principally because of the two reasons:

  1. All Balkan Christian states and nations had a common enemy – the Ottoman Empire; and
  2. All of them became afraid that the foreign powers, on the first place Russia and Austria, will resolve the “Eastern Question” in their favor by dividing the spheres of influence in the region not taking into consideration the wishes and interests of the Balkan nations.

The core of the First Balkan Alliance was Serbia and the pivotal advocate of it was her ruler prince Mihailo I Obrenovic. However, the alliance was not effectuated because the general Balkan revolution and war against the Ottoman Empire was to be postponed, in fact till 1912, for three reasons:

  1. Prince Mihailo I was assassinated in Belgrade on June 10th, 1868 and the new Serbian monarch prince Milan Obrenovic, a minor at that time, followed other options to solve the “Eastern Question”;
  2. Neither Balkan state was prepared enough in military and diplomatic points of view to wage the war at that moment against the Ottoman Empire; and
  3. Austria-Hungary (from 1867) became extremely hostile towards the idea of the Balkan revolution which will lead to the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire and unification of the Serbs by inclusion of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo-Metohija, Macedonia and Montenegro into a greater/united Serbia.

After the Habsburg military debacle in the Prusso-Austrian and the Italo-Austrian Wars of 1866 the main concern of Austrian foreign policy became to annex Bosnia-Herzegovina that means direct collision with Serbia and the deterioration of diplomatic relations with Russia. In essence, the idea of Austria-Hungary concerning the Balkan affairs was that the Ottoman Empire should not be dismissed in Europe, but just reformed.

Nevertheless, the First Balkan Alliance gave two fundamental attainments to the Balkan peoples, which were realized at the beginning of the 20th century:

  1. An inspiration for a union of their forces for the national liberation against the Ottoman Empire, which was achieved after the First Balkan War of 1912–1913 won by the members of the Second Balkan Alliance; and
  2. A notion of united South Slavic lands, which was mainly realized after the First World War by creation of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes on December 1st, 1918.

However, the First Balkan Alliance from the 1860s was clearly French design and primarily anti-Russian. Namely, the Polish uprising against the Russian authorities in 1863 influenced Napoleon III to create a new plan for redrawing European national borders which would have great consequences for the Balkan affairs in the case of its implementation. More precisely, in March of 1863 the French emperor informed the Austrian ambassador in Paris, count Metternich, regarding his idea of a new political map of Europe:

  1. The historical Kingdom of Poland would be reestablished within the borders which Poland had before its First partition in 1772;
  2. The reestablished united Kingdom of Poland (including and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania) would be governed by one Habsburg archduke;
  3. Italy would gain the province of Venice from Austria;
  4. Austria would be territorially compensated by annexation of Silesia and Serbia;
  5. France would annex the region of the Rhine;
  6. Prussia would, as territorial compensation, annex the Kingdom of Saxony and the Kingdom of Hanover; and finally
  7. The European possessions of the Ottoman Empire would be divided between the Balkan states.

Clearly, such Napoleon’s plan to remap Europe was in essence anti-Russian and creation of some „Yugoslavia“ at the Balkans was a part of his anti-Russian policy. Nevertheless, Franz Joseph I (1830–1916, the emperor of Austria and the king of Hungary from 1848 to 1916) rejected this plan because the British diplomats saw in this plan Napoleon’s intention to reestablish French supremacy in Europe.[1] At the same time, the Serbian government became acquainted with Napoleon’s new plan to cede Serbia to Austria in July 1863 through Italian deputy in parliament, Vegezzi-Ruscal.[2]As a consequence of these events Serbia lost confidence in France’s Balkan policy.

As a kind of political answer Belgrade intensified its own propaganda among the South Slavs and developed a network of agencies for the preparation of an anti-Ottoman revolution, especially in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The fundamental task for intensification of the Serbian national work in the Ottoman province of Bosnia-Herzegovina (the so-called Pashalik of Bosnia that also included the territory of Rashka/Sanjak) at the time of the Polish uprising of 1863–1864 was Serbia’s intention to impede the realization of Napoleon’s idea of ceding this Ottoman province to Austria as a compensation for Austrian evacuation of Venezia Giulia – an idea that was contrary to the Serbian national interest. For this reason, Serbian national propaganda and other activities in the Pashalik of Bosnia were developed to such extent that in February 1864 the governor of this province, Osman-pasha, warned the Sublime Porte in Istanbul that Belgrade had already completed preparing the Bosnian Serbs for the uprising: 1) Serbia had armed them with weapons and ammunition produced in Serbia; 2) Serbia had established a revolutionary network within the whole territory of the province; and 3) Serbia had concentrated its own military forces along its border with Bosnia. By the spring of 1864 the Ottoman authorities were so convinced that the Balkan revolution would soon break that they started concentrating their forces along the Serbian and Romanian borders in Bulgaria, Rumelia and Bosnia. As a part of military preparations against Serbia and Romania the Porte instituted obligatory military service in both Bosnia-Herzegovina and Albania. According to the Russian diplomatic reports from Albania, the Ottoman policy towards the Albanian tribal aristocracy became softer and many Albanian feudal lords (beys) returned to state offices.[3] A new number of the Muslim Tatars and the Cherkezs were settled in Bulgaria along the Serbian border as a protective measure against the Serbian aggression on the Ottoman Empire in addition to 150,000 Tatars and Muslim Circassians living in Bulgarian territory after the Crimean War (1853–1856).[4]The Ottoman military plan was to have these Muslim settlers, expelled by the Russian authorities from the Caucasus area, serve as frontiersmen along the Ottoman military frontier in the Balkans. Nevertheless, the Ottoman military intervention against Serbia and Romania was finally thwarted only because of the French diplomatic intervention in Istanbul in 1864.[5]

 

2. Sotirovic 2013Prof. Dr. Vladislav B. Sotirovic

www.global-politics.eu

globalpol@global-politics.eu

© Vladislav B. Sotirovic 2016

Endnotes:

[1] Seton-Watson R. W., “Les relations de l’Autriche-Hongrie et de la Serbie entre 1868. et 1874”, Le Monde Slave, № 2, Paris, 1926, p. 433; Bourgeois E., Manuel Historique de Politique Entrangère, III, Paris, 1924, p. 369.
[2]Diplomatic Archives of Serbia, Archives of Ilija Garašanin, “Ilija Garašanin to Vegezzi-Ruscal”, concept, August 27th, 1863, Belgrade.
[3]Diplomatic Archives of Serbia, Archives of Ilija Garašanin, Belgrade, “A copy of report of Russian consul in Rumelia and central Albania to the director of the Asiatic Department of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs”, Bitola (Monastir), March 15th/27th, 1864, № 77 (translated from Russian).
[4] Poulton H., The Balkans. Minorities and States in Conflict, London, 1994, p. 117.
[5]Archives du Ministère des Affaires Étrangères, Paris, vol. Turquie, Belgrade, “Botmillian to de Lhuys”, August 23rd, 1864, Belgrade, № 85.

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