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Russia vs The West: Rebooting the Same Old ‘Madman’ Script

“Simple-minded media propaganda – like the claim Russia’s Putin is deranged – is precisely what brought us to the crisis over Ukraine.” 


This is exactly how Hollywood and the US government have framed war and foreign policy for the last 50 years. 

It all began with British writer and former intelligence operative, Ian Flemming, author of the highly successful James Bond 007 series, later spun into the successful global franchise of blockbuster films and merchandise. What the Bond franchise achieved was a subtle reprogramming of the western mind, thereby preparing it for the coming epoch of perpetual ‘humanitarian interventions.’

Author Ian Flemming

This was done by gradually inculcating the personification of evil as it relates to international affairs and geopolitics – where all of the world’s woes could be reduced down to the dictatorial machinations of a single individual – a mad man. And to stop him, all of our military, intelligence, and financial assets must be mobilsed to halt his wanton designs of global domination and destruction of ‘our way of life.’ Sound familiar? The script treatment is a familiar one: a singular antagonist upon which rests the fate of the world, a seamless avatar whose name would change from story to story; Goldfinger, Blofeld, and Dr No, to name only a few. Hollywood would also produce countless movies and TV programs using this same character and plot format. Decades of conditioning had established this narrow psychological device as the natural framework for how the Anglo sphere and its budding new post Cold War political economy would view world events – through the lens of a tightly controlled corporate mainstream media. Saddam, Bin Laden, Gaddafi, Milosevich, Assad, Kim, Noriega, and now Putin – these are objects of our collective fear and free-floating anxiety, as identified by western government leaders and their media and social media information mills.

In a matter of hours, any world leader can be transformed into the virtual reincarnation of Adolph Hitler. This phenomenon might also be described as the Hitlerization of western regime change targets – a deft mainstream public relations feat that was even achieved with a sitting US President, Donald J. Trump.

To call it propaganda would be a vast understatement. For the western world, this is now a bona fide cultural set-piece.

The mainstream clarion call is always the same: “We, the free nations of the world, must all band together to stop this madman before he blows us all up!” 

This process is used to trigger mass formation psychosis, and to quickly get the general public on board with the latest war de jour.

Some things never go out of style – or so it seems….

Jonathan Cook from Middle East Eye writes…

How convenient for western leaders that every time another country defies the West’s projection of power, the western media can agree on one thing: that the foreign government in question is led by a madman, a psychopath or a megalomaniac. 

At a drop of a hat, western leaders are absolved of guilt or even responsibility for the terrible events that unfold. The West remains virtuous, simply a victim of the world’s madmen. Nothing the West did was a provocation. Nothing they could have done would have averted the disaster.

The US may be the most powerful state on the planet by far, but its hands are apparently always tied by a deranged, implacable foe like Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

Putin, we are told, is not advancing any rational – from his perspective – geopolitical or strategic interest by invading his neighbour, Ukraine. And so no concession could or should have been made because none would have prevented him from acting as he has.

The West, meaning foreign policy hawks in Washington, gets to decide when the timeline of events started, when the original sin occurred. The compliant western media give their blessing, and our hands are washed clean once again.


The subtext – always the subtext – is that something must be done to stop the “madman”. And because he is irrational and a megalomaniac, such action must never be framed in terms of concessions or compromise – that would be appeasement, after all. If every enemy is a new Hitler, no western leader will risk a comparison with Neville Chamberlain.

Instead, what is needed urgently, western politicians and media agree, is the projection – whether overtly or covertly – of yet more western power and force.

Unmitigated catastrophe

The US and British invasion of Iraq nearly two decades ago is a particularly pertinent and telling counterpoint to events in Ukraine.

Then, as now, the West was supposedly faced with a dangerous, irrational ruler who could not be made to see sense and was unwilling to compromise. Saddam Hussein, western leaders and their media insisted, had allied with his arch-enemies in al-Qaeda, the perpetrators of the Twin Towers attack of 9/11. He had weapons of mass destruction, and could launch them towards Europe in 45 minutes.

Except, none of that was true – not even the madman bit. Saddam was a hard, cold, calculating dictator who, like most dictators, kept himself in power through a reign of terror over his opponents.

Nonetheless, the western media faithfully amplified the tissue of evidence-free claims – and patent lies like that preposterous alliance with al-Qaeda – concocted in Washington and London to usher in the illegal 2003 invasion of Iraq.

United Nations inspectors could find no trace of stockpiles of Iraq’s former biological and chemical weapons arsenal. One, Scott Ritter, went unheard as he warned that any possessed by Saddam would have turned to “harmless goo” after many years of sanctions and inspections.

The improbable 45-minute claim, meanwhile, was not based on any kind of intelligence. It was lifted straight from a student’s speculations in a doctoral dissertation. Iraq’s invasion by the US and Britain was not only illegal, of course. It had horrifying consequences. It led to the likely deaths of around a million Iraqis, and spawned a terrifying new kind of nihilistic Islamism that destabilised much of the region.

Those interests, of course, were largely concealed because they were so ignoble, flagrantly violating the so-called “rules-based order” Washington claims to uphold…

Continue this story at Middle East Eye

READ MORE INSIDE UKRAINE NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Ukraine Files

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