Never start a fight you’re not prepared to finish


During the past 35 years, the U.S. government has invaded many countries (Grenada, Panama, the former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya) and come in conflict with others (Iran, North Korea, Syria), but it always has avoided conflict with nations equally powerful.  Until now.

Dmitry Orlov, a Russian-born American citizen, described some of the consequences of the Obama administration’s support for an unelected, anti-Russian takeover of Ukraine.

Those who thought they were in control have just suffered a major defeat. On Ukraine so far, it’s Russia 1, US Oligarchy 0: Crimea is once again Russian, the transfer of sovereignty happened peacefully and in accordance with the internationally recognized principle of self-determination, and this defeat is so embarrassing that nobody even wants to talk about Crimea any more. It’s a done deal.

More defeats follow, as the boomerang effect of sanctions imposed on Russia. The US will not be able to withdraw from Afghanistan via the safe northern route that runs through Russia; instead, the endless convoys will have to run the gauntlet through Pakistan where the locals, incensed by endless drone attacks on their weddings and funerals, will do their best to blow them up.  The US will not be able to launch military satellites, because the Atlas V rockets won’t fly without the Russian-built RD-180 engines, for which there is no replacement. Nor is it likely that, as things escalate, US astronauts will still be able to get up to the International Space Station, since that requires a trip on the Russian Soyuz.

Not that the Russians have a lot of time for this nonsense. They are busy negotiating deals, like the oil barter deal with Iran which neatly circumvents the sanctions; like the long-term natural gas supply deal with China; and quite a few others. For example, Russia and China agreed to build a canal through Nicaragua, which will supplant the Pentagon-controlled Panama canal. Nicaragua will also get a GLONASS ground station (Russian-Indian replacement for the Pentagon-controlled GPS system), plus a Russian military base, to make sure that the US doesn’t decide that it can do something about any of this. Nearby, Russia forgave $90 billion worth of Soviet-era Cuban debt, re-establishing relations between Russia and Cuba and opening up Cuba to large-scale Russian investments.  Russian companies will be developing Cuba’s offshore oil and gas fields.

No doubt, the US would love to counter these moves, but it can’t because it doesn’t have the talent. Most of the experienced, professional diplomats quit in disgust during Bush Jr.’s reign, when they were forced to continually lie to the whole world about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now the diplomatic corps is loaded with incompetents whose only credentials are that they raised lots of money for Obama’s election campaigns. At the next changing of the guard they will be replaced with the next crop of amateurs. It is little wonder that they are losing.

But these people are unaccustomed to being defeated, and defeat makes them livid and hysterical, and then they go and wax apoplectic in public, yelling and screeching and spraying saliva. You can tell that their minds have snapped when they start comparing everyone to Adolf Hitler. And you can see it all right on television. Meanwhile, the vast majority of the population in the US is perplexed.  Except for the Lost Plane Channel formerly known as CNN, commentators on all the major news channels, even the super-blockheaded Fox News, are wondering aloud: “What the hell are we doing in Ukraine?”   Well, we are trying to safeguard the interests of the Rockefellers and the Rothschilds [1], to be sure, but how does knowing that help you?

“How well is that going?” you might ask. Well by now all of eastern and southern Ukraine is in open revolt against the US-appointed junta in Kiev. The neo-Nazi “Right Sector” initially supported the junta and helped with the putsch that overthrew the democratically elected government. But then one of the “Right Sector” leaders, Sashko Bily got shot, most likely for opposing a plan to import a trainload of nuclear waste from the EU and dump it on the ground near Chernobyl. That train is still stuck on the Ukrainian border. Now the junta leaders are shaking in their boots because the “Right Sector” could stage another coup, this time against them.

via ClubOrlov: Statecraft or Witchcraft?.

I think there is a real danger of war with Russia if the United States sends troops, even mercenaries who work for private contractors, to Ukraine.   Imagine how Washington would react if there was a political crisis in Canada or Mexico, followed by seizure of power by unelected Russian-backed anti-American revolutionaries.

Even if war can be avoided, a global struggle between the United States and Russia is not in the interest of either country.  It would likely mean that the Shanghai Cooperation Agreement, encompassing Russia, China and the nations of central Asia, would become a NATO-like military alliance, perhaps including Iran as well.  It would likely mean these nations would form an economic bloc independent of the U.S. dollar.   Germany and other western European nations, which depend on Russia and central Asia for oil and gas, would not necessarily support the United States in this conflict.

The least bad choice for the Obama administration would be to back down, because there is nothing at stake in Ukraine that is of vital interest to the American people.  But it may be that it is too late for this, that we are committed to global struggle with Russia — not so much a new Cold War and a new version of the 19th century Great Game between the British and Russian empires.


[1]  Neither the Rockefeller nor the Rothschild families exercise great influence anymore, so I assume that Dmitry Orlov is speaking metaphorically.

I rewrote the concluding paragraphs after this post was published.

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2 Responses to “Never start a fight you’re not prepared to finish”

  1. Chico Says:

    Reblogged this on The Deliberate Observer.


  2. EthnicKonflict Says:

    God dammit. Why does the US always treat foreign policy like a chess game? Now we’ve lost all our diplomats, apparently. It’s no surprise that a talented diplomat would be resistant to the idea of continuous lying, as these are people who have dedicated their lives to the pursuit of political peace.


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