In Bombs for Peace, George Szamuely, a senior research fellow at the Global Policy Institute at London Metropolitan University, has produced a revealing and sharply argued analysis of Western intervention in the Balkan wars of the 1990s. The primary focus of the book is on Western diplomatic and military interventions, which played a crucial role in the breakup of Yugoslavia and the plunge into conflict. Continued intervention fueled deeper conflict, as the United States repeatedly smashed every prospect for peaceful settlement until it could impose its control over the region.
The author places these events in a wider policy context, exploring how Western leaders capitalized on conflict in the Balkans to reorient NATO into an offensive organization suited for out-of-area operations. From participation in the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan to the bombing of Libya, NATO’s aggressive role is firmly established. Feeding the public with simple-minded morality tales, Western leaders distracted attention from their real goals. “NATO,” Szamuely writes, “under constant U.S. prodding, seized on the crisis in Yugoslavia to transform itself from a defensive alliance into a global superpower, a coalition of powers that would purport to use force to secure peace and stability, a protagonist in other people’s conflicts yet also a referee. NATO could nonetheless not admit publicly that it had now become a war-making machine. So it came up with an ingenious formula. . . . Humanitarian war was to become its credo.” Non-Westerners rightly perceived NATO’s humanitarian war doctrine “as a fraud, a smokescreen to confuse the public, a mélange of wild exaggerations and deceptions to justify intervention in the affairs of small, weak states or in complicated conflicts on behalf of certain protagonists and against others.”
In his opening chapter, “Yugoslavia: Destroying States for Fun and Profit,” Szamuely lays bare the myriad diplomatic maneuvers by U.S. and Western European officials that guaranteed the destruction of the state and made war inevitable. Western intervention was consistently one-sided and heavy-handed, aimed at the demise of Yugoslavia, the last remaining socialist nation in Europe.
Having successfully backed the secession of Slovenia and Croatia, the West then threw its support behind the separation of Bosnia-Hercegovina. After encouraging Bosnian Muslim leader Alija Izetbegović to renounce the Lisbon Agreement that he had just signed, an accord that would have prevented war from breaking out, the United States then sabotaged the London Conference. Quoting an approving Western media report that applauded war and derided peace negotiations, Szamuely responds: “Thus the perfect expression of that peculiar, yet fashionable, moral sentiment: continued war, more killings, more destruction of towns and villages, more displacement of populations, more detention camps, more refugees were preferable to an agreement that — perish the thought — ‘might silence the guns for a time.’ Heroism comes easily to those for whom it’s vicarious.”
As the war dragged on in Bosnia, the United States repeatedly derailed peace negotiations and blocked ceasefires. Countless lives were lost to serve the dubious goal of imposing U.S. control over the region.
When Croatia launched Operation Storm against the Krajina region, it killed 2,500 and expelled 200,000 Serbs, dwarfing in size any single act of population removal that had taken place in Bosnia. The Croatian forces that launched the operation were well armed with Western weaponry and had the backing of the United States, which had prepared them with military training. U.S. warplanes provided support by bombing a Krajina Serb airfield and destroying radar installations, allowing Croatian planes free rein to bomb and strafe columns of fleeing civilians. “U.S. officials were delighted,” Szamuely writes. “Here was a massive humanitarian disaster that the humanitarian interventionists could celebrate.” He goes on to quote approving statements made by several U.S. officials.
Bosnia marked NATO’s first military engagement. In the largest of its bombing campaigns in that war, NATO launched widespread attacks against Bosnian Serb sites in support of Croatian cross-border and Bosnian Muslim offensives in 1995. U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrooke met with Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, and urged him to extend his forces’ assault in neighboring Bosnia: “I would hope that you can take Prijedor, Sanski Most, and Bosanski Novi.”
The end of the war in Bosnia accomplished the Western goals of military occupation and political and economic control over the newly minted state that became a colony in all but name. From the Western standpoint, there remained the problem that Yugoslavia, then comprised of Serbia and Montenegro, with its socialist-dominated economy was still in place. A new pretext would have to be invented for war, and that was found in Western support for the secessionist Kosovo Liberation Army. “For NATO, Kosovo was to be the test of its new post-Cold War strategy of offering military solutions to non-military problems,” Szamuely points out.
Szamuely details the maneuvers by U.S. diplomats at peace talks in Rambouillet, shortly before the NATO bombing campaign, in which they steered the outcome towards war. The inescapable conclusion is that U.S. leaders wanted war.
The bombing of Yugoslavia provided a lesson for future interventions. The absence of evidence to buttress wild and exaggerated propaganda claims is no impediment. “Nothing succeeds like success. And the measure of success is the lack of NATO casualties. Small wonder, then, that in 2002 and 2003 U.S. and British officials and their media boosters disdainfully ignored the intelligence that raised serious doubts about Iraq’s WMDs. The Kosovo experience had taught them that failure to find evidence to support the claims used to launch an armed attack would be quickly forgotten amid the scenes of public rejoicing and ecstatic military parades.”
That scenario was to be replayed in Libya, where Western accusations of an imagined impending massacre provided the self-justification for bombing. “Yet, as in Yugoslavia, the Western powers made no attempt to ascertain whether a crime had been committed or was about to be committed. . . . The NATO powers were determined to start bombing as soon as the Security Council passed its resolution. Any delay might have led to a peaceful resolution of the crisis, an outcome the powers were as anxious to avoid in 2011 as they were in 1999.”
Szamuely is devastating in his critique of U.S. diplomatic measures leading up to NATO’s attack on Yugoslavia. These maneuvers are essentially unknown to the Western public, including those on the Left who continue to cleave to the notion of U.S. leaders’ veracity and good intentions in regard to attacking small nations. Only through an act of willful blindness could such a belief be sustained in the face of the mountain of evidence that Szamuely marshals.
Laced with lacerating humor, Bombs for Peace is particularly effective in its deconstruction of Western rhetoric. Time after time, Szamuely quotes Western leaders’ words and takes them apart and subjects them to scathing logical analysis. With sweeping eloquence, Szamuely argues his points in a compelling and authoritative manner, exposing the mendacity of the proponents of war.
The official mythology is that NATO intervention stopped the wars in the Balkans. “As usual,” Szamuely notes, “the media were more than happy to go along with this story. Yet the only wars the NATO powers had brought to an end were those they themselves provoked and subsequently prolonged.”
The Western role in the Balkans is an object lesson that provides the template for many of the West’s subsequent interventions and wars, and Bombs for Peace is essential for understanding the nature of that relationship. “The complacency and arrogance of NATO’s leaders was extraordinary,” observes Szamuely. “To people who had been subjected to Western colonial rule — most of the non-Western world — NATO’s self-satisfied assumption of a new global mission sounded an awful lot like the old ‘white man’s burden.’ NATO was the old imperial club, back together again with a plan to ensure continuing rule over the world’s backward people.”
Prodigiously researched, Bombs for Peace is graced with the elegant prose style typical of the author, and with his long-held passion for justice. It is so beautifully written that it is hard to put down, and constitutes a damning exposé of Western policy.
Or Yugoslavia’s for that matter. The level of western cynicism on “territorial integrity” is far greater than you probably know. The Kosovo-Crimea discrepancy is just the tip of the iceberg
Earlier this month Obama gave an earful to Putin (from a G7 meeting held 2,000 kilometres away from Moscow) complaining that this day and age you just can’t go around violating the “territorial integrity” and “sovereignty” of other countries:
“Does he continue to wreck his country’s economy and continue Russia’s isolation in pursuit of a wrong-headed desire to recreate the glories of the Soviet empire? Or does he recognize that Russia’s greatness does not depend on violating the territorial integrity and sovereignty of other countries?”
That’s a rather strange statement I think because evidence Obama’s regard for sovereignty of other countries is in a rather short supply.
You’d think under Obama US military didn’t occupy Iraq and Afghanistan and bombed Libya (as well as drone bombed a bunch of others albeit with the consent of their notional governments.) Also there’s scarcely anyone who needs to be reminded of the fact that US helps the demise of governments and hand picks their replacements in foreign countries on a regular basis – not the least it did so in Ukraine itself.
Nor is there evidence of any principled regard of Obama, the US or the West for the notion “territorial integrity” of other countries. Under his presidency the US continues to pressure foreign governments and international bodies to accept the dismemberment of Serbia that it orchestrated under Clinton and Bush.
The hypocrisy of Washington and its lesser partners which severed Kosovo from Serbia, but “lambasts” Russia for incorporating Crimea is something that will not escape many. However, few are aware of the full extent of western cynicism and lack of principle on this matter.
Opportunistic western flip-flops on territorial integrity did not start with Kosovo and Crimea, but much earlier and accompanied the entire break up Yugoslavia.
Green = states which recognize Kosovo as not part of Republic of Serbia
In 1991 Slovenia and Croatia, constituent republics of Yugoslavia, unilaterally declared independence from federal Yugoslavia. The Yugoslav central government (headed by the Croatian Ante Marković) opposed this, holding that the two did not follow proper procedure and their attempt to remove themselves from the federation was illegal.
Indeed, the Yugoslav Constitution was clear that just like the borders of constituent republics could not be altered without their consent, so the borders of the federation could not be altered without the consent of all the constituent republics. Thus while the law in Yugoslavia theoretically allowed for a secession of a constituent republic, this required the consent of all the other republics, which Slovenia and Croatia did not acquire.
Rather than respect Yugoslavia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty the west championed Slovenia’s and Croatia’s independence. EU offered moral and diplomatic support for Slovenia and Croatia separating from Yugoslavia and Germany, which was the most animated on the issue, also covertly provided intelligence. All of this had started before the two had even declared independence.
Supposedly western states held that international borders were inviolable and even confirmed this notion in the Helsinki Accords, but then came up with a convoluted reason why Yugoslavia was the “exception” where they didn’t need to – the EU ruled that Yugoslavia was “in the process of disintegration” and therefore normal rules did not apply.
The next year with western encouragement and support (this time mainly American rather than German) Bosnia and Herzegovina also declared independence as the third Yugoslav constituent republic to do so.
Slovenia was nationally homogenous, but within the borders of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina both was a large Serbian population which wished to remain in Yugoslavia. Quickly they took control of the areas where they lived and declared their own political entities – hoping to be allowed to remain a part of a single state with Serbs of Serbia. The west would have none of it, but instead fought them tooth and nail.
According to western states Yugoslavia’s territorial integrity did not need to be respected – ergo the support for independence of its republics, but the territorial integrity of these new controversial states which had only come into existence as subjects of international law five minutes ago had to be absolute. Croatia could secede from Yugoslavia, but Croatian Serbs could not counter-secede from Croatia to remain a part of Yugoslavia. Bosnia and Herzegovina could secede from Belgrade, but the Serbs of Bosnia and Herzegovina could not counter-secede to remain under Belgrade.
Although the EU had rejected the notion that Slovenia and Croatia needed the consent of other Yugoslav republics to secede legally as called for by the Constitution of the federal state, it insisted the notion that their own borders may not be changed without their own consent must be upheld.
Although they had championed the secession of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia, western states militantly opposed the secessionist projects of Croatian and Bosnian Serbs. They fought it diplomatically, waged a massive propaganda effort against it, condemned it at the UN, instituted a comprehensive sanctions regime against Belgrade for supporting it, funneled arms to Croatian and Bosnian Muslim forces, installed themselves as less than fully impartial peacekeepers in the conflict and eventually directly intervened against it militarily in NATO’s “Operation Deliberate Force”.
The next western flip flop on territorial integrity in former Yugoslavia followed with Kosovo.
Albeit the west had previously insisted that the territorial integrity of what had been constituent republics of Yugoslavia was absolute, it now came up with a reason (the Serbs’ bad behavior) why this didn’t apply to Serbia.
Whereas it had helped prevent local Serbs from seceding from Croatia and Bosnia, the US championed the independence of Kosovo Albanians from Serbia thus redrawing the borders of a former Yugoslav constituent republic that west had claimed was a no-no in the other cases.
Naturally as the US sponsored the independence of Kosovo in repeatedly warned the Kosovo Serbs (who form a solid majority in its northernmost bit) against any thought of counter-seceding in order to remain under Serbia.
So let us recount the western position:
It claimed to uphold the sovereignty and territorial integrity of other countries and the inviolability of borders in Europe
However, this did not extend to the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of Federal Yugoslavia which could be trampled at will
Nonetheless, albeit the territorial integrity of Federal Yugoslavia itself wasn’t worth anything, the territorial integrity of its constituent republics seeking independence was holly
Albeit the territorial integrity of the Yugoslav constituent republics of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina was holly, the territorial integrity of Serbia was not
Albeit Slovenes, Croats and Bosnian Muslims could leave Yugoslavia, Serbs could not leave Croatia and Bosnia
Albeit Serbs could not leave Croatia and Bosnia, Kosovo Albanians could secede from Serbia
Albeit Kosovo Albanians could secede from Serbia, Kosovo Serbs could not secede from Albanian-run Kosovo
Albeit Kosovo could unilaterally secede from Serbia under NATO military control, Crimea could not unilaterally secede from Ukraine under Russian military control
May world be spared hunger, plague and western principles.
My work documenting how the law was lost began about a quarter of a century ago. A close friend and distinguished attorney, Dean Booth, first brought to my attention the erosion of the legal principles on which rests the rule of law in the United States. My columns on the subject got the attention of an educational institution that invited me to give a lecture on the subject. Subsequently, I was invited to give a lecture on “How The Law Was Lost” at the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law in New York City.
The work coalesced into a book, The Tyranny Of Good Intentions, coauthored with my research associate, Lawrence M. Stratton, published in 2000, with an expanded edition published in 2008. We were able to demonstrate that Sir Thomas More’s warning about prosecutors and courts disregarding law in order to more easily convict undesirables and criminals has had the result of turning law away from being a shield of the people and making it into a weapon in the hands of government. That is what we witness in the saga of the Hammonds, long-time ranchers in the Harney Basin of Oregon.
With the intervention of Ammon Bundy, another rancher who suffered illegal persecution by the Bureau of Land Management but stood them off with help from armed militia, and his supporters, the BLM’s decades long persecution of the innocent Hammonds might have come to a crisis before you read this.
Bundy and militiamen, whose count varies from 15 to 150 in the presstitute media, have seized an Oregon office of the BLM as American liberty’s protest against the frame-up of the Hammonds on false charges. As I write the Oregon National Guard and FBI are on the way.
The militiamen have said that they are prepared to die for principles, and the rule of law is one of them. Of course, the presstitute media is making the militiamen into the lawbreakers—and even calling them terrorists—and not the federal government’s illegal prosecution of the Hammonds, whose crime was their refusal to sell their ranch to the government to be included in the Masher National Wildlife Refuge.
If there are only 15 militiamen, there is a good chance that they will all be killed, but if there are 150 armed militiamen prepared for a shootout, the outcome could be different.
I cannot attest to the accuracy of this report of the situation:
The resources required to verify the information in this account of how the government escalated a “crisis” out of the refusal of a family to bend is beyond the resources of this website. However, the story fits perfectly with everything Lawrence Stratton and I learned over the years that we prepared our book on how the law was lost. This account of the persecution of the Hammonds is the way government behaves when government has broken free of the rule of law.
I can attest with full confidence that the United States no longer has a rule of law. The USA is a lawless country. By that I do not mean what conservative Republicans mean, which is, if I understand them, that racial minorities violate law with something close to impunity.
What I mean is that only the mega-banks and the One Percent have legal protection, and that is because these people control the government. For everyone else law is a weapon in the hands of the government to be used against the American people.
The fact that the shield of law no longer exists for American citizens is why, according to US Department of Justice statistics, only 4 percent of federal felonies ever go to trial. Almost the entirety of federal felonies are settled by coerced plea bargains that force defendants to admit to crimes that they did not commit in order to avoid “expanded indictments” that, if presented to the typical stupid, trusting, gullible American “jury of their peers,” would lock them away for hundreds of years.
American justice is a joke. It does not exist. You can see this in the American prison population. “Freedom and Democracy” America not only has the largest percentage of its population in prison than any country on the planet, but also the largest number of prisoners.
If you consider that “authoritarian” China has four times the population of the United States but fewer prisoners, you understand that “authoritarian” China has a more protective rule of law than the United States.
Compared to “freedom and democracy America,” Russia has hardly anyone in prison. Yet, Washington and its media whores have defined the President of Russia as “the new Hitler.”
The only thing we can conclude from the facts is that the United States Government and those ignorant fools who worship it are evil incarnate.
Out of evil comes dictatorship. The White House Fool, at best a two-bit punk, has decided that he doesn’t like the Second Amendment to the US Constitution any more than he likes any of the other constitutional protections of US citizens. He is looking for dictatorial methods, that is, unlegislated executive orders, to overturn the Second Amendment. He has the corrupt US Department of Justice, a criminal organization, looking for ways for the dictator to overturn both Congressional legislation and Supreme Court rulings.
The media whores have fallen in line with the would-be dictator. All we hear is “gun violence.” If only Karl Marx were still with us. He would ridicule those who turn inanimate objects into purposeful actors. It is extraordinary that the American left-wing thinks that guns, not people, kill people.
The position of the “progressive left-wing” in the United States is perplexing. Here are Americans, immersed into a police state, as are the Hammonds, and the progressive left-wing wants to disarm the population.
Whatever this “progressive left-wing opposition” is, it has nothing in common with revolutionaries. The American left-wing is totally irrevelant, a defeated force that sold out and no longer represents the people or the truth.
Even more astonishing, judging by comments on RT’s report on the situation and the readers comments, all RT and American blacks want to know is where is the National Guard in Oregon? Why isn’t it called out against the White militia protests as it was called out against the Black Ferguson protests?
If protesting the murder of a young black American by Ferguson police is not legitimate and the protesters are “terrorists,” why aren’t the Oregon protestors terrorists for trying to protect jailbirds from their “lawful sentence”? This is the wrong question.
It really is discouraging that the American black community is unable to understand that if any American can be dispossessed, all Americans can be dispossessed.
It is also discouraging that RT decided to play the race card instead of comprehending that law is no longer a shield of the American people but is a weapon in the hands of Washington.
Why doesn’t RT at least listen to the President of Russia, who states repeatedly that America and the West are lawless.
Putin is correct. America and its vassals are lawless. No one is safe from the government.
The Catholic pontiff does more than just spread the Vatican’s word across the world, as he also spreads the ‘gospel’ of Ukrainian nationalism and victimhood, too. Francis made headlines when he said the mass killing of ethnic Armenians in the last days of the Ottoman Empire was “the first genocide of the 20th century”. Largely lost amidst the ruckus is his previous statement that “the remaining two (genocides) were perpetrated by Nazism and Stalinism”, which was a strong allusion to Ukrainian nationalists’ decades-long campaign to have the Golodomor recognized as genocide, to which the Vatican, and especially Francis himself, are ardent proponents. President Putin remarked in his annual Q&A session that “Attempts to put [Nazism and Stalinism] in the same basket are absolutely baseless…As ugly as the Stalin regime was, with all its repressions and ethnic deportations, it never attempted to eradicate [an ethnic group] completely”, and although his words were likely in response to recent Ukrainian legislation that ludicrously equates the two, his comments are just as relevant to the Pope as they are to Poroshenko.
Part I of the article begins with an overview of the Vatican’s historic geopolitical antagonisms against Orthodox Russia, including the role that Catholicism and its Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth proxy played in the external construction of the Ukrainian state. It then explores how and why Ukraine is still a battlefield in this epic saga, as well as detailing the US’ geopolitical designs for the country in its quest to transform it into a forward-operating base against Russia. Part II dispels the “genocide” myth surrounding the Golodomor and shows how a handful of radical states have seized control of the conversation to further their Russophobic aims. The series then climaxes with an in-depth examination into Pope Francis’ claim that the Golodomor is “genocide” and his statements of inferred support for the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists, both of which serve historically revisionist anti-Russian ends and make Pope Francis poised to become one of the New Cold War’s most notorious actors.
The First Rome vs The Third Rome
Making The Move From Rome To Moscow:
Throughout the ages, the center of Christianity has shifted from West to East as result of certain geopolitical tectonic movements. Beginning with the fall of the Roman Empire in 476, the Byzantine Empire (or Eastern Roman Empire) centered on Constantinople took up the torch of worldwide Christian leadership, hence its designation as the “Second Rome”. Throughout the subsequent centuries, the differences between Western (Roman) and Eastern (Byzantine) Christianity widened to the point of a spiritual chasm, and when Rome unsuccessfully tried enforcing its views on Constantinople, the Schism of 1054 occurred. Since then, the Vatican has been consistently antagonist against the Orthodox Church, and it’s highly recommended that the reader reference Fort Russ’ epic examination on the topic, “The West against Russia: The Vatican against the Orthodox Church”, to gain a deeper understanding of the events that henceforth transpired.
To sum up events over next millennium (as difficult as it is to do so in brief), after Constantinople fell to the Turks in 1453, the center of Christianity once more shifted, albeit this time to Muscovy. Ever since the Baptism of Vladimir the Great in Crimea and the Christianization of Kievan Rus in 988, this civilizational sphere had vehemently ascribed to Orthodox Christianity, owing to its cultural and political affiliations with the Byzantine Empire. Following the fall of Constantinople, Moscow carried on the Christian torch and became the “Third Rome”, which created a major inferiority and sectarian complex back in the Catholic “First Rome”.
The Polish Proxy:
From thenceforth, the Vatican redirected its aggressive geopolitical calculus from the Sea of Marmara to the State of Muscovy, even going as far as supporting its Catholic client state, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, in its militant proselytization eastward. Other than having previously occupied and forcibly converted the historically Orthodox territory of the former Kievan Rus, Warsaw took its campaign all the way to Moscow during the Time of Troubles, even briefly occupying the Russian capital from 1610-1612 and imprisoning the Orthodox Patriarch, who they would later starve to death as a martyr. It wasn’t long after the Polish occupation began that the Russian people banded together (as they so often have during their most troubling historic periods) and began the campaign to purge the Poles from their land, in a moment of glory that is nowadays commemorated as National Unity Day every 4 November.
The Catholic Construction Of Modern-Day Ukraine:
The liberation of Muscovy from the Poles began the nearly two-centuries-long struggle that would see the Russians pushing the invading menace all the way back to its home territory (an historical prelude to what would later happen to Napoleon and Hitler, although in much shorter timeframes), all the while working to restore the civilizational heritage of Kievan Rus that the Polish occupiers had spent centuries trying to dismantle. Part of the Polish plan had been to spiritually partition the western reaches of this land from its central core, which led to the imposition of Catholicism over the Orthodox people that had originally inhabited modern-day Belarus and especially Ukraine.
One of the most novel forms that this took was the creation and promotion of the Uniate Church (also known as “Greek Catholicism”), an artificial religious construct created by Rome which fused many Orthodox practices with loyalty to the Catholic Pope. The effect of this religious manipulation served to de-facto spread Catholicism amongst the remaining Orthodox ‘holdouts’ in the region, thus fostering the myth of “identity separateness” among the population which could be strategically activated to increase resistance to Russia and aid in slowing down Moscow’s prolonged counter-offensive in liberating Kievan Rus from the Poles. In the coming centuries, the spiritual separateness of parts of modern-day Ukraine would be used as the foundation for the external construction of the “Ukrainian nation” by the German General Staff in 1918. Lenin’s recognition of a so-called Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1922 provided ex post facto legitimacy to this Vatican-Polish-German creation.
The greatest legacy of Lenin’s mistake was that he grouped together the Catholic-adhering /pro-Polish/”Ukrainian”-identifying western areas with the reawakened Russian- and Orthodox-affiliated east, which consequently created an unstable entity whose externally influenced western reaches could be used to destabilize the entire thing. Had he kept both parts separate and perhaps designated only the western portion of modern-day Ukraine as “Ukraine” owing to its foreign peculiarities, then the situation could have been dramatically different. Nonetheless, ever since the geopolitical designation of Ukraine (roughly translated as “borderland”) was unilaterally birthed by Lenin’s decree (only to grow under Stalin and Khrushchev), the entire territory has become a focal point of Western aggression waged by its associated political and spiritual powers.
Political and Spiritual Aggression:
A perfect example of political weaponization over the territory of Ukraine was the Polish-Soviet War, whereby Moscow attempted to finally liberate the last vestiges of Kievan Rus from foreign occupation (having switched from Polish to Austrian then back to Polish control). Warsaw refused to peacefully withdraw from the territory due to its understanding that centuries of Polonization and Catholic proselytization (political and spiritual factors) intrinsically made it a separate entity than it historically used to be, and the Poles were able to successfully extend their control over the region until 1939. Prior to that, Polish leader Josef Pilsudski preached the policy of Promtheism, whereby the Polish state encouraged ethnic minorities in the Soviet Union (especially Ukraine) to rise up against the central authority as a ‘celebration of their separateness’ and secede into a constellation of what would then become pro-Polish satellite states. It ultimately failed to achieve its ambitious goals, but the legacy of separating Ukraine from Russia continues into the present day via Zbigniew “without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be an ‘empire’” Bzezinski and his Grand Chessboard strategies.
Enter the Vatican, which has made a concerted effort to pluck converts out of the confused Ukrainian territory since the end of the Soviet era and extend its reach ever eastward into originally Orthodox lands. Ukrainian Prime Minister Yatsenyuk visited the Vatican last year with a scheme for souls that amounted to an alliance proposal, but due to the fragility of the Kievan regime and the associated dim prospects for the partnership’s success, Francis turned it down. It’s not to say that he wouldn’t have accepted it had it been proposed on more solid political grounds, since the Vatican’s goal has always been to proselytize Catholicism eastward at the expense of the Orthodox Church. Not only that, but the Vatican has been opposed to Moscow in geopolitical manifestations as well, as can be seen by Pope John Paul II’s Cold War “Holy Alliance” (in the words of Time Magazine) with Ronald Reagan against the USSR. There is thus clearly an established precedent set in modern times for using the spiritual authority of the Catholic Church as a front to advance geopolitical objectives, meaning that, as it will later be argued, it’s not unreasonable to link Pope Francis’ support for the Holy Grail of Ukrainian nationalists, the Golodomor as “genocide”, to larger geopolitical plans directed from Washington.
Let’s look at what these aforementioned plans entail:
1. Decouple Ukraine From Russia
The first step is to prevent the reintegration of Ukraine into the Russian fold, be it economically through the Eurasian Union (as then-Secretary of State Hillary threatened one year before EuroMaidan) or militarily through the CSTO, by highlighting artificially imposed Ukrainian ‘separateness’ (Polish-enforced Catholicism and Vatican-constructed “Uniates”) and selectively emphasized victimhood (Golodomor as “genocide”). The Western idea is that if Ukraine, a fraternal and religiously related entity, can be made to hate Russia and turn against it, then so too can less intimately affiliated ones like Kyrgyzstan, or, as Brzezinski’s Eurasian Balkans asymmetrical attack plan suggests, even Tatarstan and Chechnya one day (again).
2. Eliminate Russia’s Strategic Depth
The second stage expands upon the ‘success’ of the first one in turning large segments of the population against Russia, but this time it includes a tangible military dimension. The concept here is to make Ukraine either a de-jure or de-facto (shadow) member of NATO, which in effect would eliminate the valuable strategic depth that Russia has through the country’s neutrality. It needs to be mentioned at this point that the Color Revolutionary authorities in Kiev already revised the country’s constitution in order to eliminate its previous references to neutrality, thus meaning that NATO membership (be it de-jure or de-facto) can continue moving forward at full speed. The more strategic depth that NATO is able to successfully chip away from Russia, the more likely it is to tip the military balance away from parity and towards a first strike scenario, which would then place Russia in a position of nuclear blackmail.
3. The Reverse Brzezinski
The final phase of the US’ weaponization of the Ukrainian state is to have Kiev stage provocative actions that would elicit a Russian military response, preferably rash, hurried, and not thought out to the end. The Reverse Brzezinski, as the author calls it, sees the Polish-American strategist reverting back to his Afghan War roots in goading Moscow into a quagmire, but thankfully, President Putin appears to have caught on to the ruse and reaffirmed during his Q&A session that he war between the two states is “impossible”. No matter the President’s intention, however, the US will certainly continue trying to create the tempting pretext for a Russian military intervention, hoping perhaps that yet another slaughter of Russian-affiliated Eastern Ukrainians might be the tripwire for tricking Moscow into conventionally responding one of these days.
The ‘Good’ That Comes From A Golodomor “Genocide”
The ‘glue’ that holds the US’ plans together is the ability to rally Ukrainians against Russia, and this is where the Golodomor [Holodomor in Ukrainian spelling – OR] “genocide” myth is absolutely pivotal. It provides the underpinning of popular support and ‘legitimacy’ for rabid Ukrainian nationalism (the modern-day ideology of the state) and its anti-Russian authorities, as well as altering Ukraine’s natural trajectory away from Russia and diverting it towards the West. If the myth can be deconstructed, then the entire Western plan is endangered, but so long as it’s believed, propagated, and even ‘legitimized’ via the ‘authority’ of the Pope, then it presents the single-greatest obstacle to Ukrainian-Russian reconciliation and serves as the fuel for forwarding the US’ grand strategy against Russia vis-à-vis Ukraine. This is the ultimate strategic benefit that the politicization of the 1930s famine and its nationalist focus on solely one victim demographic attains, hence why it’s so heavily promoted in the Western world.
Russia has never refuted the fact that the Golodomor tragically occurred, but it has refused to label the events as genocide because many other groups besides Ukrainians were also adversely affected. Kirill Frolov, head of the Ukraine Department at the Institute of CIS Countries, explains:
“Russia shares the opinion that it was a terrible tragedy…It is well-known that the hunger of the 1930s was the reason for the deaths of millions of Ukrainians but also millions of villagers living along the Volga River, in the Ural Mountains, West Siberia, Kazakhstan, the North Caucasus and other regions. Every nation should remember its victims but it is high time to forget Yushchenko’s ideology (of designating the Golodomor as “genocide”). We also mean the attempt to interpret the hunger in Ukraine in the 1930s as the genocide of the Ukrainian people alone.
Recall that in the 1920s the Bolsheviks carried out the genocide of Russians and the elimination of the Russian Orthodox Church and actively supported the idea of the so-called Ukrainisation. It was an attempt to separate Ukrainians from Russians and make a thousand years of our common history null and void. As for the hunger, it was a consequence of Stalin’s industrialization policy. It was a conflict between the city and the countryside which involved the entire territory of the Soviet Union, including Russians and Ukrainians. It was not genocide but sociocide associated with the industrialisation policy.”
RT summarized the official explanation by relating that:
“Russia argues that the famine was caused by a combination of bad management, unfavourable weather and disastrous collectivization policies, which lead to the tragic events and cost numerous lives of many ethnic groups over several territories and not just Ukraine alone.”
Additionally, it has come out that some of the numbers being cited by the Ukrainian government to account for its associated victims have been faked:
“As quoted by the Russian Izvestia newspaper, Vladimir Kornilov of the Kiev branch of the Institute of CIS Countries has discovered why the official number of alleged Holodomor victims has significantly increased since the launch of Yushchenko’s campaign. According to Kornilov, the so-called “Book of Memory”, published in Ukraine’s regions, is full of falsifications. Instead of real victims of famine, one can find in the book alcoholics, different crash victims, and even those who weren’t alive in 1932-1933.”
Furthermore, some of the photographic ‘evidence’ that has been passed around as supposedly confirming the “genocide” is also falsified:
“Here’s a photo by Dorothy Lang, shot in 1936 in Oklahoma. And here’s a photo by Fritof Nansen made in Russia’s Povolzhe region in 1921. But both of those pictures and other falsified photos were displayed at Sevastopol’s exhibition on the Ukrainian famine of 1932-1933,” (Sevastopol city council deputy) Merkulov says, demonstrating aged photographs…“We go to the Ukrainian president’s official website. Click on the photo gallery. Click on public events. And we see this picture – Yushchenko looking at pictures of the Ukrainian famine of the 1930’s. But the picture he’s looking at is this one, also shot by Nansen in Russia’s Povolzhie region. It is written here: Famine in Russia.”
“We have declassified all documents on the famine in Ukraine and there are only two genuine pictures from that time. The rest are very much distantly related and are not necessarily shot in Ukraine,” Olga Ginzburg the head of Ukraine’s State Archive told RT.”
Rejecting The Lie:
The claims of “genocide” are so dubious that the Council of Europe, generally pro-Western (despite Russia’s membership), refused to use such a label, opting instead to drop the false description from their draft resolution on the topic. Instead, their 2010 commemorative report, while mentioning that Kiev does call the tragedy “genocide”, recognizes all of the victims of the Golodomor, not just Ukrainians, specifying that:
“In Kazakhstan, too, millions fell victim to the mass famine, and the ratio of the dead to the whole population is believed to be the highest among all peoples of the former Soviet Union. Traditionally nomads, the cattle-raising Kazakhs were forced to settle down and were deprived of livestock. The Great Famine is remembered as the greatest tragedy of the Kazakh people.
In the grain-producing areas of Russia (the Middle and Lower Volga, the North Caucasus, the Central Black Soil region, the Southern Urals, Western Siberia and some other regions), the famine caused by “collectivisation” and dispossession of individual farmers took millions of lives in rural and urban areas. In absolute figures, it is estimated that the population of Russia had the heaviest death toll as a result of the Soviet agricultural policies.
Hundreds of thousands of farmers also died in Belarus and the Republic of Moldova.
While these events may have had particularities in various regions, the results were the same everywhere: millions of human lives were mercilessly sacrificed to the fulfilment of the policies and plans of the Stalinist regime.”
What’s more, even the pro-Western ‘human rights’ group, Memorial, notorious for lambasting Russia’s Soviet-era heritage and labeled a “foreign agent” in accordance with Russian law, surprisingly presented a strong argument against calling the Golodomor a “genocide” back in 2010. Voice of Russia quotes Interfax as reporting that:
“Ukraine was right to make a legal assessment of the Soviet leadership’s crimes, but the famine of the 1930s was not genocide against Ukrainians, Arseny Roginsky, head of Russia’s Memorial human rights and history society, has told Interfax. On Wednesday, the Kiev Court of Appeals declared Soviet and Ukrainian Bolshevik leaders guilty of organizing the Holodomor, or famine, in Ukraine in 1932-1933, which it qualified as genocide. The court ruled the criminal case to be dropped because the defendants, among them Joseph Stalin, Vyacheslav Molotov and the then Ukrainian leadership, were already dead.
“Still, I don’t understand what documents were used to prove that the famine in Ukraine was genocide,” Memorial’s leader said. In his firm belief, the “famine of the 1930s is a common tragedy that befell Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan and therefore, instead of driving them apart, it should bring them closer together.” Memorial, a major nongovernmental human rights organization in the post-Soviet space, conducts research into the history of Stalinist repressions and the rehabilitation of victims of political terror in the former USSR.”
Who Goes Gaga For “Genocide”?:
If the Council of Europe and pro-Western foreign agents inside Russia itself refuse to bite the bait of politicization over the Golodomor, who then subscribes to and perpetrates this myth? First and foremost, it’s the Ukrainian government, which actually made denial of the Golodomor as “genocide” a crime per a piece of legislation passed in 2006 under the Orange Revolutionary government. While the law carried with it no “criminal responsibility”, it symbolically elevated the hoax to the level of national myth and part of the official Ukrainian identity, thereby facilitating the implementation of the US’ aforementioned geopolitical designs against Russia.
Prominent neo-conservative icon and famous anti-Russian author Anne Applebaum is another “genocide” activist and plans to pen a book about the “very, very well managed cover-up” behind the Golodomor, alleging that there has been a vast conspiracy to hide the truth about what happened. In actuality, the real cover-up is that certain parties are hiding the fact that other nationalities besides Ukrainians were also victims of the 1930s famine and that it was not “genocide”, but describing Applebaum’s personal life might shed some valuable light into why she would so actively want to politicize this tragedy. Her husband just so happens to be Radoslaw Sikorski, the rapidly pro-Western former Foreign Minister of Poland and current speaker of the Polish Parliament, who was also the co-author of the EU’s 2009 Eastern Partnership initiative that ultimately forced Ukraine into the doldrums that it’s currently in. It should go without saying that just as Victoria Nuland and her neo-conservative husband Robert Kagan coordinate their anti-Russian activity as a couple, so too do Anne Applebaum and Radoslaw Sikorski act as a singular unit in attacking Russia in every means available to them.
Adding a geopolitical aspect to the discussion is that Poland and the Baltic States, the most anti-Russian entities in the world today aside from the current Ukrainian authorities, are among the handful of countries which label the Golodomor as “genocide”. These states’ political establishments have a vested interest in promoting Russophobia in any and all of its iterations, including historical revisionism, and they’ve been some of the most enthusiastic supporters of Ukraine’s ultra-nationalist government since it seized power in the coup last year. Additionally, these are also the states which have become most heavily fortified by NATO since the Ukrainian Crisis began, which underlines their anti-Russian strategic dispositions.
OR Note: Even more important dimension of the “Golodomor” controversy consists in trade embargo imposed by the West on Soviet gold in 1920s. They accepted only grain as a mean of payment for modern machinery and industrial equipment being widely exported to the USSR in the framework of huge industrialization policy. Under such circumstances Moscow had nothing to do but paying grain at the expense of its own people! For more details read “Who organized the famine in the USSR in 1932-1933?“
The True ‘Francis Effect’
Smoke And Mirrors:
Unlike Poland and the Baltic States, which have minimal if no influence whatsoever worldwide in propagating this tale, Pope Francis has a global congregation of over 1 billion people who eagerly listen to his words and understand them as being representative of the will of God Himself. Not only is he the world’s most prominent religious leader, he’s also something of a global celebrity too, attracting the attention of millions of non-Christians all across the world who are interested in what he has to say. The media-driven ‘Francis Effect’, however, has elevated the Pope to such an esteemed level of popular culture and furthered his cult of personality to such extreme extents that it’s become impossible for anyone to criticize or accuse him of any wrongdoing without coming off as ill-spirited and self-serving. Essentially, he’s become an unassailable actor that can operate with impunity and away from any mainstream media scrutiny over the intentions.
The Real Deal:
Through his association with the Catholic Church, he’s assumed to be ‘infallible’ and a ‘man of God’ (much as the Dalai Lama is seen to be in relation to Buddhism), with the underlying idea that such an individual would never be guided by political motivations. This idea is absolutely misguided, since it’s been proven that both Pope John Paul II and the current Dalai Lama have both been ultra-politicized throughout their ‘religious’ careers, being weaponized by the US for use against the Soviet Union and China’s interests, respectively. The same is shaping up to be true about Francis, who is now beating the drums of Ukrainian “genocide” to advance the agenda of the US, Ukrainian nationalists, and his own proselytization interests.
Prior to becoming the leader of the Catholic Church, Francis spoke about his views on the Golodomor in his 2010 book, “On Heaven and Earth” [link to full original text in Spanish – OR], in which he wrote that “People who suffered massacres and persecution – as they did during the three biggest genocides of the last century, the Armenians, Jews and Ukrainians – struggled for their freedom.” From this bombshell of a quote, the future Pope is telling the world that the deaths of Ukrainians during the Golodomor is on par with the events that befell the Armenians and Jews during their associated tragedies. When compared with his recent news-making quote about how “the remaining two (genocides) were perpetrated by Nazism and Stalinism”, it’s clear that he’s equating Nazism with the genocide of Jews and Stalinism with the genocide of Ukrainians.
Addressing another very important point, Francis also falsely stated that the Ukrainians suffered from their supposed “genocide” because they “struggled for their freedom”. To put everything into perspective, the alleged “genocide” didn’t occur until the early 1930s, and the only Ukrainian ‘freedom’ organization (as the West sadly views it) active at the time was the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists. To bring unaware readers up to speed, this group was the forerunner to the actual genocidal Ukrainian Insurgent Army (responsible for the targeted slaughter of hundreds of thousands of Poles – watch video below) and the ideological cradle of notorious Nazi Stepan Bandera. What Francis is plainly doing here is defending the seed of Ukrainian Fascism and perverting history to paint the proto-Nazi group as the ‘good guys’, after which he imagines that the Soviet government’s only response to their ‘struggle for freedom’ was to commit “genocide” against all of their ethnic kin.
At this point it’s relevant to reference Putin’s response that was noted at the beginning of Part I, in which the Russian President declared during his annual Q&A that “Attempts to put [Nazism and Stalinism] in the same basket are absolutely baseless…As ugly as the Stalin regime was, with all its repressions and ethnic deportations, it never attempted to eradicate [an ethnic group] completely.” This puts him at absolute odds with Francis, who had earlier used his global pulpit to preach the exact opposite. While it may seem strange to some that Argentinian Francis would try to involve himself in former Soviet affairs and potentially butt heads with Putin, the reasoning is that the pontiff is actually fulfilling a very important role in the context of the New Cold War.
New Cold War Context:
Historical revisionism is one of the postmodern battlefields of the New Cold War, and Francis is set to make himself one of its most ‘celebrated’ pro-Western fighters as he moves closer to openly promoting his Golodomor “genocide” campaign. Although not emphasizing it at the moment (and with the media currently obsessed with his Armenian commentary and Erodgan’s reaction), it’s expected that he’ll certainly become more active on this front in the future, which will further the three following anti-Russian objectives that are pivotal components of the West’s strategy in the New Cold War:
Misleadingly Tarnish Russia’s Reputation
The Soviet Union and its darker historical events are falsely associated with the Russian Federation in many uneducated circles across the world (especially in the West), and one of the lies pervasive of this inaccuracy is that the communist state was essentially a ‘Russian’ state. By drawing greater attention to the Golodomor as “genocide”, Francis is passively allowing this inaccurate association to take runaway root in people’s minds, with all of the negative implications thereof in the context of current tensions. This could predictably include a spike in anti-Russian sentiment throughout the West, as well as the vile assumption prodded on by Ukrainian nationalists that the tragic events were a ‘Russian-managed genocide’ against Ukrainians.
Legitimize And Secure Ukrainian Nationalism
The ‘authority’ and ‘legitimacy’ that Francis’ words hold in the minds of millions makes him the world’s most dangerous proselytizer of Ukrainian nationalism, in that he secures the foundations of this ideology and makes it ‘acceptable’ to the global public. The myth of “genocide” and the absolutely false statement that this alleged crime occurred because of Ukrainians’ “struggle for their freedom” (led at that time by the proto-Nazi Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists) does more to support modern-day Fascism in Ukraine than Nuland’s celebrated $5 billion ever could hope to do.
Propagating the concept of Ukrainians being the most victimized and oppressed demographic in the former Soviet Union and forgetting about the other 150+ nationalities is geopolitically dangerous as well, since it promotes “Ukrainian Exceptionalism” and ‘justifies’ its nationalist consequences in the modern day. The Pope’s blessing of and sympathy for Ukrainian nationalism stabilizes the core of the US’ geopolitical imperative in Eastern Europe by laying the framework for Washington’s socio-political engineering operations that aim to turn all of Ukraine against Russia.
OR Note: A self-telling evidence of the hate-speech by Vatican-controlled clergy in the West of Ukraine well before the current crisis:
Create A Clash Of Christian Civilizations
One of the most often overlooked details of Samuel Huntington’s ‘Clash of Civilizations’ theory is the division of the traditionally Christian World into East and West. While there certainly are cultural and historical differences between Huntington’s defined realms of both religious denominations, sectarian understandings are in no way the primary driver of any sort of their contemporary geopolitical competition. Rather, religion is being weaponized by the West as an asset in promoting pre-established geopolitical ends, such as the destruction of Russia’s soft power potential as the spiritual center of the Orthodox faith.
The Catholic Church’s recognition of the Golodomor as “genocide” and the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and its spawn as ‘freedom fighters’ is meant to attract more Ukrainian converts to the Vatican, hoping that their nationalist fervor overrides their Orthodox obligations (which does not recognize the previous in the same manner). This Western-based ‘spiritual’ seduction is meant to complement the already existing Western political and social sentiments that have invaded the country and institutionalize Ukraine’s division between East and West. Francis’ end goal is to aggressively expand Huntington’s previously defined boundaries of Western Civilization, conform to his theories of a possible clash between the Catholic and Orthodox worlds, and firmly divide the Christian faith into geopolitical spheres vis-à-vis their political leaders’ relationship to the West.
Francis’ sectarian plans in the Christian world mirror those of Saudi Arabia in the Islamic one, in that the Catholic/Sunni strands of belief are seen as being on the ‘right’ side of the geopolitical spectrum while the Orthodox/Shia ones are seen as being on the ‘wrong’ one. It’s important to underline that geopolitical identification has nothing whatsoever to do with religion, and although certain denominations happen to be a prevailing demographic characteristic in certain Resistant & Defiant (R&D) states, it is by no means a cause of their strategic dispositions or in any way exclusive to any sort of political belief. Atheist China, for example, is just as opposed to the US’ unipolar hegemony as predominantly Orthodox Russia and majority Shiite Iran, just as Orthodox Romania and Shiite Azerbaijan are currently aligned with the US (with Bucharest being deep in Washington’s pocket and Azerbaijan on the potential verge of pivoting). Dividing religious spheres along sectarian beliefs and falsely attaching a political connotation to one’s faith only serves the geopolitical dividends of those who are drawing the lines, in this case, the Vatican, Saudi Arabia, and their allied American strategists.
Catholicism has historically been used by the Vatican to subvert predominantly Orthodox areas, especially as a means of geopolitically countering Russia. While the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth is long gone (despite efforts by Warsaw to contemporaneously revive it), the strategic goal of Catholic proselytization in the East still remains, with the battlefield continuing to center on Ukraine. The Papacy’s centuries-long goal of poaching Ukrainian converts has undergone a tactical modification through its promotion of Ukrainian nationalism, which both serves the Vatican’s own interests and complements the geostrategic ones of the US. Francis’ push to have the Golodomor recognized as “genocide” against Ukrainians, as well as his inference that this mythical crime occurred as punishment because the proto-Nazi Ukrainian Organization of Nationalists’ “struggled for their freedom”, is indicative of the strategic confluence currently underway between Rome and Washington. While Francis has yet to fully play his hand in this regard, the fact that he’s still crying wolf about “genocide” since being elected two years ago shows that he may be testing the waters in anticipation of a full-fledged information offensive in the near future. Should he continue behaving this way, then Francis’ antics are expected to further ‘legitimize’ and institutionalize this hateful ideology, which would in turn have exceptionally dire consequences for the memory of historical truth as well as facilitate the US’ geopolitical plans against Russia in the New Cold War.
About the author:
Andrew Korybko is the political analyst and journalist for Sputnik who currently lives and studies in Moscow, exclusively for ORIENTAL REVIEW.
Original source of the article: www.orientalreview.org