Ukraine is a war immorally provoked by the United States and its European allies. Without paying attention to the terrible human costs of the war, which the Western powers are now crying crocodile tears over, they closed all options to Russia, which at one point even proposed to start talks to join NATO, an attitude that did not arouse in the very democratic and humanist Western powers the slightest intention of even starting to talk about the issue. None of Russia’s just demands regarding security were heard, as if a stable and secure world order could be built for everyone, except for a superpower like Russia, besieged from the Baltic to the Black Sea.
By Atilio Boron
Published in English on Resumen-english, Mar 28, 2022
Se puede leer este artículo en español aquí: Ucrania: ¿cómo y por qué se fabricó la guerra?
Before being elected President of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower was the first NATO Commander. In February 1951, a few months after taking office he wrote the following text: “If in 10 years all the American troops stationed in Europe for the purpose of securing national defense have not returned to the United States, then this project, NATO, will have failed.” The troops did not return, but rather their presence in Europe continued to grow. Not only that, but once the Soviet Union had disintegrated, and contrary to the solemn and hollow promises of the main leaders of Western governments (Clinton, Bush, Obama, Helmut Kohl in Germany, Tony Blair in the United Kingdom, etc.) that “NATO would not move an inch to the East”, they moved equipment and troops to the very borders of Russia. What! Wasn’t it the Soviet Union and communism that were the enemy? No. The enemy was, and is, Russia, a vast and powerful country whose very presence, whether under a communist or capitalist regime, is an obstacle to the United States’ plans for world domination.
When, in 1997, Bill Clinton initiated NATO enlargement, Eisenhower’s granddaughter, Susan, gathered the signatures of 49 renowned specialists (military, diplomats and academics) and published an open letter on June 26 saying that the “plan to expand NATO is a political mistake of historic proportions”. Susan took into account the opinion that shortly before – on February 5 in an article published in the New York Times – had been expressed by none other than George Kennan, the diplomat who with his famous “Long Telegram” of February 22, 1946 sent to President Harry Truman (and signed under the pseudonym of Mister X) had been the architect of the policy of “containment” of Soviet expansionism that shortly afterwards would lead to the creation of NATO. Deeply disturbed by Clinton’s intentions, Kennan wrote in that piece that “NATO expansion would be the most tragic mistake in U.S. policy in the entire post-Cold War era … because it would push Russia’s foreign policy in a direction that would decidedly not be the one we want.” (https://www.nytimes.com/1997/02/05/opinion/a-fateful-error.html ) Clinton, and with him, the entire military-industrial and financial complex, disregarded the veteran diplomat’s warnings and continued with their policy. Stimulating wars and military spending was what Washington was supposed to do, given that its politicians in the Administration and Congress finance their political careers with contributions from big business in that sector. The collapse of the USSR was not over when George W. Bush Sr. Bush senior, Paul Wolfowitz, produced a “Defense Planning Guidance” that was leaked to the press on March 7, 1992 stating in its first paragraph that “Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, whether on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat … which requires that we strive to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources, under consolidated control, would be sufficient to generate global power.” The scandal was huge and the extreme unilateralism of its content led to it being labeled, even in certain establishment media, as imperialist. It also caused concern that its author bluntly stated the importance of “preventive military interventions” to neutralize possible threats from other nations and prevent autocratic regimes from becoming superpowers. Of course, the addressee of the document is clearly post-Soviet Russia. After the document was leaked to the press the Pentagon published the watered-down version, in fact, a mere attempt at “damage reduction” covering, unsuccessfully, its most brutal expressions with a more diplomatic language but without abandoning in the least the central theses of the “Road Map”. (“U.S. Strategy Plan Calls For Insuring No Rivals Develop”. The New York Times. , 8.3.1992)
The reconstruction of Russia’s economic and military power encouraged the appearance of new reflections and policy papers recommending various courses of action to the White House. Russia’s military advances were evidenced by its decisive role in the defeat of the jihadist insurgency in Syria, a quagmire created by Washington’s decision to overthrow Bashar al-Assad with the help of the Islamic State and its serial beheaders. The same, when after the 2014 coup in Ukraine, in a withering operation Vladimir Putin reintegrated Crimea to Russian jurisdiction. But in 2019 there appears a fundamental document published by none other than the Rand Corporation and whose title says it all: “Overextending and unbalancing Russia.” According to its authors its pages “list nonviolent, cost-imposing options that the United States and its allies could promote in the economic, political, and military areas to stress Russia – overextending and unbalancing – its economy, its military, and the stability of its political regime.” The paper neatly examines the various areas for each of which it presents several options. For example, in the economy, imposing sanctions and trade barriers, ending European dependence on Russian gas, favoring U.S. gas exports to Europe, and encouraging the emigration of scientists and people with high technical training in order to deprive Russia of this type of human resource. For each of these options, the probability of success of the measure, its benefits and also its costs and risks were estimated, and on this basis a recommendation was formulated.
In the military field, the first option was to provide lethal aid to Ukraine, to increase support for the Syrian rebels, to promote liberalization in Belarus, to expand ties between the United States and the countries of the South Caucasus and to reduce Russian influence in Central Asia. Again, each of these alternatives is weighed in terms of likelihood of success, its benefits and its costs.
The report is available here.
Conclusion: as we said before this document was released and as we reaffirm even more forcefully, Ukraine is a war immorally provoked by the United States and its European allies. Without paying attention to the terrible human costs of the war, which the Western powers are now crying crocodile tears over, they closed all options to Russia, which at one point even proposed to start talks to join NATO, an attitude that did not arouse in the very democratic and humanist Western powers the slightest intention of even starting to talk about the issue. None of Russia’s just demands regarding security were heard, as if a stable and secure world order could be built for everyone, except for a superpower like Russia, besieged from the Baltic to the Black Sea. The perverse plans of Wolfowitz and Rand are irrefutably eloquent. It is the road map that the United States has designed to, with the complicity of the despicable European governments; destroy Russia as was done with Yugoslavia. No one can predict how this war will end. However, it is worth remembering with Clausewitz that for centuries Russia was attacked, harassed and invaded. In each case it seemed at first that the debacle would be inevitable, but it always managed to reverse what seemed a foregone conclusion and defeat its aggressors. Will it be different this time?
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