21st Century Wire
Novorossiya starts in Crimea.
In interview with CBS, May 11, former US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates firstly said that Russia’s annexation of Crimea was “a done deal” and that “there’s nothing we can do to change the situation.” He openly questioned what the real motives of Vladimir Putin in eastern Ukraine might be.
Gates remarked, “I’m not sure he knows at this point, other than… protecting the Russians and making sure the Ukraine ultimately leans back toward Russia”.
There is a lot more truth in that statement than any of Washington’s arm-chair emperors, emissaries (Jay Carney) and legions of laptop-wielding policy hacks would ever admit themselves. They carefully omit that the biggest bloc of anti-Kiev protesters in East and South Eastern Ukraine is actually a federalist bloc, in other words – they are not necessarily secessionist, or “separatist”, as exclusively characterised by the western media.
Gates is a rare denizen of Washington’s upper reaches who feels able, or even obliged to occasionally tell the truth. He said in his CBS ‘Face the Nation’ interview that the US and Obama are in a very tough spot because “We really have very few tactical options. There is no real military option. And in the short term, there’s not a lot we can do.”
Unlike the Maidan Square mobs this past winter, this is a genuine grassroots anti-Kiev movement who want to be part of the Ukrainian state but with representation and on equal footing politically and with no racist discrimination from the right-wing dominated puch being backed by Washington in Kiev.
Why are they concealing this fact in the west? Simple: it does not fit into Washington and London’s prefabricate script of ‘USA good, Russia bad’, or the elaborate con job currently running 24/7 across state-run media organs in the US and UK.
Being one rare Washingtonian who faces the truth as well as the nation, Gates made an urgent plea for Washington to act on the USA’s domestic problems – not those of a failed state 10,000 miles away. He laid the blame squarely where it belongs, saying that the greatest security threat was not Russia. “I think the greatest national security threat to this country at this point is the two square miles that encompasses the Capitol building and the White House”.
“If America can’t get some of our problems solved here at home; if we can’t get our finances in a more ordered fashion, if we can’t begin to tackle some of the internal issues that we have,” then “those foreign threats recede significantly.”
Very shocking! Being a former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (photo, left) should know all about nuclear weapons and ICBMs.
Make no mistake, neocons like Victoria Nuland, Hillary Clinton (yes, she walks, talks, and acts like a neocon) and insane John McCain have been tasked with the job of ‘beating’ Russia. ‘Wall Street Journal’ editorial writers, and similar glove puppet go-to-war gurglers ignore the simple, basic fact that Russia can’t be beaten, not militarily anyway. It may be nice to imagine a Libyan-style NATO operation against Russia followed by its collapse and a “really neat” mob assassination of Putin, but that is strictly for ‘WSJ’ editorials and the other similar graphic novels. Not for sane adults.
The European Sanctions and IMF Loan Charade
In typical European disarray, double dealing and intrigue – to force the hand of other “European allies and brothers” into losing juicy markets in Russia paid with shiny petrodollars – the EU quickly responded to the referendum votes in Eastern Ukraine. They claim these are “illegal, immoral and will make Ukraine thin”, in fact wafer thin when it comes to attaching an IMF ball and chain. Kiev may now lose the rest of the agreed IMF $17 billion loan after receiving its first $3.2 billion installment – $2.7 billion of which has to go to Gazprom for gas payment arrears according to the IMF. The IMF also says Kiev owes it $5 billion on previous loans in the Yevtushenko and Tymoshenko era – despite the IMF de factor recognizing the Kiev Flash Mob which used street violence to chase out the country’s previous elected governments. In other words, there’s not much left for Kiev in the IMF bailout. They will need another one soon after.
The Kiev Flash Mob might try and repudiate the previous governments – but not their debts.
Defending Ukraine – or several Ukraines – by sanctions against Russia, has an unappetizing feel and look of lost bizniss to come, for the Europeans. The tirades from Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande on Sunday May 10th following the referendum votes in Eastern Ukraine were predictable European feint and subterfuge.
Their joint statements, and their several statements “agreeing to support tougher sanctions”, and their calls for Putin himself to “do the right thing” regarding elections across the whole of Ukraine are as two-faced and absurd as France continuing to build two Mistral-class “invasion platform” fighting ships for Russia, and continuing to train 400 Russian sailors to use the ships, in France. The German corporate and industrial elite have already screamed loud that it wants all sanctions to be dropped, and all talk of war with Putin to disappear. Bizniss is bizniss (Germany did not get to be the most powerful economy in Europe by leaving money on the table).
In interview with Germany’s ‘Bild’ newspaper, Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski claimed: “I don’t have much understanding for the way that some Europeans are viewing Russia. It’s better to put out the fire now than to wait for a larger fire to spread to other nations. We can’t just stand by and watch when a nation is being blackmailed with brutality and military power right in front of our front door.” He meant Poland’s front door, but conveniently forgot that the European trick is to always dump the dirt in front of somebody else’s front door.
To be sure there is an inevitably unavowed, never-admitted reason for this deceit, stretching way beyond simple greed for Putin’s petro-euros and gas-dollars. Unless the promised May 25 “whole country” elections in Ukraine for a new president are held, Kiev remains an unelected Flash Mob government. It is not democratically elected. Leaders like Obama, Merkel, Hollande and Cameron will have to explain why they support an unelected government that grabbed power by street violence.
If they can’t do that, they should simply resign themselves.
The reality is, no matter how much money Washington, or the IMF throws at Kiev, they cannot pound Eastern Ukraine into submission without losing every ounce of credibility Kiev and the West thinks it still has left over from the Maidan Magic Show. Eventually they will have to recognise the East, and respect the will of those people.
All Russia has to do now is sit and wait, as the Maidan hangover wears off in Kiev and the IMF’s bad medicine kicks in. Save for a full-blown civil war, or escalation into a wider regional or world war, East Ukraine will eventually gain some form of universally recognised autonomy. No amount of kicking, crying, or screaming from Washington or London can change that fact.
The half-cocked announcement this week by Washington – that it can somehow and overnight, replace Russian gas to the Ukraine with ‘imports’ from the US – is somewhat laughable, although probably good in the short term for US gas company share prices! Again, Russia is in the driving seat on the gas front, and the Ukraine needs gas now.
Direct Democracy and Referendums
The shaky European political elites hate the word “referendum” because it infers direct democracy is at work and afoot. Nothing frightens the Brussels technocrat (or the Strasbourg paper-pusher) more than this. Unless of course, the expected result is exactly that – expected, they fear referenda.
The Scottish referendum on full independence from England is a classic example. The Madrid government’s refusal to allow the Catalonian government to hold a referendum on independence for Catalonia is another. A Europe-wide, or US-wide referendum on crony banks and their bailouts from crony government would also be “unthinkable” for the incumbent, that is the squatting elites. Just ask the man in the pub in Ireland, Greece or Cyprus.
An urgently needed banking referendum would have the simple Yes/No question: “Should banks be allowed to tax savings accounts?”. Yes or No?
The habit (in fact constitutionally guaranteed right) of calling referenda in some small democratic countries like Switzerland, and the sharp criticism of this by glove puppet media in the “mature democracies” is another proof that the elites mortally fear direct democracy. The howls of ritual indignation following the Eastern Ukraine referendum were therefore expected.
What we can hope for is that popular demand for referenda on major issues becomes the new Flash Mob call – inside of our own “mature democracies”. Instead of burning car tires (polluting the atmosphere and preventing the tires from being sustainably recycled) the Flash Mobs might chose for getting even more street-credible by hitting the elites and their technocrats where it really hurts.
Do you want to be governed by crony politicians? Yes, or No?
Do you want to be paying off the interest on your IMF loan for the next 50 years? Yes, or no?
Do you want to issue credits from your Treasury, or take on debt from your private fractional reserve central bank? Yes, or no?
Do you want a flat 10% income tax?
Do you want to dump your two party system?
You get the picture.
READ MORE UKRAINE NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Ukraine Files