A Third World War Seems a Certainty
Paul Craig Roberts
Putin’s “limited military operation” is turning out to be a disaster for Putin, for Russia, and for the world as it seems to be leading to a major war.
Recently I listed some of the serious consequences for Russia of the limited operation: https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2023/07/18/does-putin-understand-that-russia-is-at-war/ and https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2023/07/22/another-consequence-of-putins-never-ending-war/
Another is Putin’s failure to take Odessa and close Ukraine from the Black Sea. As long as Ukraine has Odessa, attacks can be mounted from sea on Crimea, such as the recent attack by 28 drones. What is the value of a limited military operation that leaves the enemy every opportunity to continue its attacks on Russian territory?
Putin’s failure to quickly knock Ukraine out of the war gives the US and NATO the opportunity to establish Black Sea bases in Romania, Bulgaria, Georgia, and possibly Turkey. In other words, Putin is allowing the possibility of the US and NATO to challenge Russia’s natural dominance of the Black Sea. It is difficult to imagine a more fatal error.
The US 101st Airborne Division is sitting in Romania. Why? Is it to cut off Russian forces in Transnistria and achieve the victory of a Russian surrender, or is it to provide “trip-wire” protection for US/NATO to complete the encirclement of the Russian Navy that has been achieved in the North and Baltic Seas as the result of Putin’s limited operation that sent Sweden and Finland into NATO?
What Putin and his pro-Western Atlanticist Integrationist advisors thought would be a reassuring-to-the- West “limited operation” confined to Donbass in fact gave the anti-Russian West the opportunity to turn the tables against Putin. He is now in a war for which he hasn’t sufficient conventional forces as he has not committed the necessary funds for a real army.
And he still refuses to abandon his goody two shoes posture that places the lives of Ukrainian civilians and their water, electric power, public transportation and every day convenience, all of which facilitates the fighting ability of Ukraine, above the survival of Russia and her troops in the trenches.
Putin after waiting eight years while Washington built up a Ukrainian Army that was about to slaughter the inhabitants of rebellious Russian provinces in Ukraine, people put into the Ukrainian Republic of the Soviet Union without their consent by Communist officials. This forced Putin’s reluctant hand, but he remained reluctant and limited his intervention to ineffectiveness that encouraged Washington’s neoconservatives who hate Russia to involve the West against Russia in a conflict that Washington cannot afford to lose. The two American presidential candidates capable of ending the conflict with Russia–Donald Trump and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., are both under fierce attack from the Democrat Party, the military/security complex, the US media, and fake prosecutorial charges. In my opinion, there is no prospect of either being permitted to become President of the United States.
Putin, the Kremlin, and the Chinese leadership do not understand that the West is no longer the West. 20th century Western principles possibly never existed in practice, but they did in principle. In Soviet Russia the propaganda of a free West played well. In the minds of the Russian intelligentsia, America became a potential liberator. When the Soviet Union collapsed when hardline Communists arrested Gorbavhev, Russians suffered loss of self-belief because of the economic hardships and political humiliations that followed. America’s shining light became a sign of liberation. The success of American propaganda in Russia might seal Russia’s doom.
Here is analysis from an Indian. https://www.indianpunchline.com/storm-clouds-gathering-in-the-black-sea/
Notice that it is not from an American or a Russian. India is a key determinant of how the future develops. Is India going to align with Russia and China, stay out of the conflict, or align with the West? India’s decision will have much to do with the stability of the world.
Do Putin and China understand the importance of India? Will we witness another Putin goody two shoes role in which the decision is left to Indian democracy, which means, of course, Washington’s money, or will China and Russia make the accommodations with India to avoid a CIA agent within the Silk Road?
In my view, perhaps mistaken, Russia and China are babes in the woods. Both governments think they are dealing with democracies whose governments are responsible to the people. Therefore, Russia and China defend themselves against accusations and act to show that they only want peaceful economic engagement.
But this is not what American Hegemony wants. The neoconservatives who have controlled US foreign policy for 30 years want the destruction of Russia and China, because both countries serve as constraints on US unilateralism.
It is extraordinary that neither the Russian nor the Chinese governments can comprehend this.