(Note: This chain of thoughts was tweeted by me on 01 March 2022. Putting it here in my blog for the sake of archiving it on another medium as well)
Folks, sharing some thoughts on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis. Thoughts have been floating about in my head ever since this thing flared up yet again, some weeks ago and now with the military part of it a week old, I feel emboldened enough to share my thoughts.
But one thing I wish to make absolutely clear right at the onset, I am NOT going to be talking much about the military operations as such. There already are enough handles doing a great job on that, for both sides!
Thoughts are still disjointed, though. Let’s see how it goes ..
If you seek inputs on the military part of the campaign, this is one of the threads to follow, as well as a worthy handle to follow on Twitter.
That said, let’s get going with this monologue of mine!
I had written this tweet below in March 2014, at about the time Shri Viktor Yanukovych was either in the process of being ousted from office, or had already been ousted, unsurprisingly, in yet another ‘revolution’!
Well, out came his book all over again, last week! It is a worthy reading for those interested. It’s been more than two decades since I myself first read it, followed by a couple more re-readings.
So .. going ahead, let’s see what has brought us to where we are on this first day of March of 2022.
Well, in one word, or rather in one acronym, the reply is NATO!
Let me tell you why ..
Post the breakup of the Soviet Union, NATO was NOT supposed to expand any further, having lost the primary reason for its existence in the first place!
In fact, Russia was explicitly promised about this.
BUT .. We wouldn’t be here if that had indeed been the case, no?!
Despite the literal collapse of Warsaw Pact, NATO galloped eastwards, unshackled, or as I originally wanted to say, UNHINGED!
But why did they do it in the first place? Well, it wasn’t the Soviets that were the enemy, it was Russia that was the ‘Other’, CIVILIZATIONALLY speaking.
Feel free to disagree, but European history bears witness to the fact that a strong Russia has always been a threat.
Talking about continental Europe, I’ll just leave this 8yr old tweet here for the time being. I’ll come to this 👇 later in the blog maybe
Most of the former Soviet republics have balanced the opposing pulls from Continental Europe and Russia well enough, including those that have already joined or rejected joining NATO, except Georgia and Ukraine, that invited overt military response from Russia.
Georgia is way past in history (relatively speaking, of course!), so I will talk about Ukraine. Remember the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis? Or atleast heard of it? For the sake of repetition, it was precipitated by the USSR placing ballistic missiles in Cuba about 60 years ago.
In response to Soviet missiles in a country about 200km away, the US reaction took the world very nearly to a nuclear Armageddon.
And here we had Ukraine, dreaming of joining NATO, sitting right on the borders of Russia.
A HUGE miscalculation, in my opinion.
But then, why did this miscalculation happen in the first place?
Well, I would say that both sides are to blame for this – NATO for leading on Ukraine, and Ukrainian leadership itself, for not seeing the clear red line that Russia had laid out.
As they say, we are all Prisoners of Geography.
This is something that just cannot be wished away. Either make peace with it, or continue fighting it but without success. I guess any astute political leader would have seen this from afar.
But then, Ukraine elected a comedian!
Well, nothing against Shri Volodymyr Zelenskyy Ji personally, but I don’t think he appreciated that NATO would merely pay lip service and lead Ukraine into actually believing the crap about getting inducted into NATO so that they can fight Ukraine’s wars with Russia!
Zelenskyy is just another manifestation of Leftist Liberal ‘experiment’ with political power through revolutions of various kinds, but one which has bounced back at them so badly. Ukrainian lives don’t matter to them, just like Syrian/Libyan ones. Period.
It was clear as day to anyone who cared to see that Ukraine was being prepped up as yet another ‘frontline state’ against the Russians. But then, an inexperienced ‘leader’ may not have been a wise choice to ‘lead’ the country under such circumstances, no?
Instead, what he has ended up doing is to ‘lead’ his country straight into this mess because of a black and white worldview, that is generally the forte of the ‘liberal’ cabal, instead of the navigation through a LOT of grey that seasoned political leaders are required to do.
Sad as it is, IMO the responsibility for all the loss of lives of Ukrainian and Russian soldiers as well as the civilians in Ukraine, lies solely on the shoulders of the inept leadership that failed to read the tea leaves and kept on dreaming about NATO coming to their rescue.
Yup, this continued even as the Russian forces were already INSIDE Ukraine!
Like I’ve said before in this blog, NATO will happily fight Russia till the last Ukrainian. Even thereafter, Ukraine will NOT be a part of NATO.
So let’s get on to the current conflict as such ..
It has been a personal belief / opinion that I’ve held since long, so I’ll not mind you not agreeing with what I write next.
The world as we knew it, had changed long ago, what with the Arab Spring and states arming militias to go after governments in countries that fell out of favour with the Western establishment that was overrun by the ‘Liberal’ cabal.
Do read the above statement once again.
But this was the first instance that one Nation was forced to militarily attack another. I do believe that this may not have been the Western gameplan originally, but then I still have my doubts. So I’ll not go there.
For me, the first inkling of the imminent commencement of military operations by Russia was the day US/Europe announced the first set of sanctions against Russia, after weeks and weeks of threats.
In fact, the first thought that crossed my mind once I learnt of the sanctions was that now there is no more leverage to threaten Russia with!
Threats of sanctions can still expect a pliable behaviour from the other party, but with sanctions actually imposed, that threat is gone!
Of course, with a comedian presiding over the rapidly sinking Ukraine, any chances of backpeddling / deal-making that some other, seasoned politician might have done, were simply non existent. Small wonder then, that the Russian troops soon entered Ukraine!
The moment that happened, I swear if you tried hard enough, you could have actually HEARD all those High Fives in the corridors of power in various ‘major’ world capitals! Here was Russia, fighting Ukraine!
(Implication – Ukraine, and NOT a NATO member European country!).
The sense of glee must have been infectious enough!
But one thing was amply clear – No country would be overtly sending their troops in harm’s way.
Not even in the ‘light banter’ in which the British Defence Secretary dreamed on about the 1853 victory!!
Of course, all this happened behind closed doors and threats of ‘We Can Send The Gurkhas‘ were not to be shared outside, but for their own idiots inside their own conference rooms!
But act they had to, especially for optics if nothing else.
Hence came all those renewed sanctions and promises and what not. All, except overt military help that Shri Zelenskyy was so hopeful of.
Btw, even the sanctions were carefully calibrated so as not to harm the West’s own interests!
But STILL .. no troops!
Yet, experiences of Libya and Syria came in handy when they started to wildly cheer on the ‘militias’ and the ‘volunteers’ that promised to fight Russia!
Also came in the narrative building on social media and very very compliant mainstream media in the ‘free’ world! Visuals of Shri Zelenskyy Ji freely walking on the streets of Kyiv, of countless Russian tanks etc destroyed along the roadsides (Hint: They were Ukrainian tanks!) soon filled up the social media landscape as well as were faithfully reported by the various large media houses.
Of course, Russian voices were conveniently cut-off from these very social media platforms that swear by their neutrality and commitment to free speech!
No wonder, Ukraine is already winning the war handsomely, atleast on social media, and kicking Russia’s backsides!
It’s been six days and Russia STILL hasn’t taken Kyiv, shout the TV Channels, announcing the defeat of Russia. If only they knew a bit of history, they would realize that the famous BLITZKRIEG of Hitler still took SIX WEEKS to overrun France!
But then, agendas rule!!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Soft Power is meaningless without hard power. We ourselves learnt it at a great cost in 1962.
Once again, I have nothing against the thousands of dead Ukrainians and Russians thousands of miles away from my home, but then, whey our own people and news anchors start swallowing the ‘Liberal’ pills being peddled by the cabal in West, one cannot but do a facepalm.
Ok, before moving ahead, I will plug in this totally unrelated meme here! 😂
So back to the more serious business of blog writing and all that!
As I mentioned before, Ukraine seems to be winning this war quite handsomely, atleast on social media. But then (and I may be totally wrong), when Russians enter Kyiv, the heartbreak will be even more intense.
Let me now talk a bit about Indian response, both at the govt as well as non-govt levels.
Personally, my own take is – ‘Not my dog, Not my fight’. I think the GOI too did its bit by abstaining in the UNSC vote.
However, our own social media fed ‘liberals’ were aghast!
How could India go against the ‘Popular’ opinion, hainji?, they asked!
In their hatred for the current govt of India and love of their ‘liberal’ heroes, I guess we all know what wins. Each and every time. (Hint: Logic is definitely NOT the answer!)
Before moving ahead, I will just plug in this well compiled thread here. Let’s hope the ‘good’ folks of Twitter don’t do their magic and make it vanish on whatever pretext!
Ok, back to the Indian ‘liberals’ and media now.
Their hearts bled for Ukraine, and in fact they still bleed. They themselves don’t know why, but they still bleed because .. well .. the masters’ hearts bleed as well!
Unsurprisingly, reporting of the situation by Indian media too has been very one sided with absolutely NO perspective whatsoever that I have personally come across, from the Russian point of view.
Yes, we are THAT shallow in what news we peddle and what news we consume.
Indian students getting stuck in Ukraine was a good ‘sad’ story to sell. But the same Indian students now held practically hostages is something that is just not worth telling the audiences, because they might question all the careful narrative building that media has been up to!
Come what may, Ukraine just HAS to be painted as innocent victims of Russian aggression without telling people why Russia invaded in the first place. Also, ‘non-white’ people being prevented from leaving Ukraine by gunmen who should instead be fighting Russia, is given a miss!
^^ Just in case you don’t believe a ‘random tweeter’ above, here’s a video as well
One can go on and on about the military conflict as such, but that is not my aim.
Before moving ahead, all I will say is that the conflict doesn’t affect us, YET.
Atleast not directly.
Let me delve on that a bit before moving ahead.
We are going to be all alone in the battles we fight. A perfect example is the immense ‘outpouring’ of wanton racism from the West just because we ‘dared’ to abstain from the UNSC vote. The way they came about to ‘scold’ India was .. well .. amusing, to say the least.
Why amusing? Well, because they forgot that India wasn’t the only country that abstained.
China did too!
But will they dare even WHISPER sweet nothings to China?
I think we all know the answer!
Here’s one such sanctimonious idiot that I chose to engage with –
The world as we know it, folks, has changed for good. This is just the beginning. Much much more is to follow, fairly soon. All we can do now is to brace ourselves. We all are already witnesses to history in making. Mark this.
Possibly this is the reason why the West is so furious in their reactions, even if non-military for the time being. Of course, another reason being that continental Europe is already effectively disarmed, thanks to NATO!
Had tweeted this thought some days ago, but I worded it wrong. I should have instead said that the Complete and Utter DESTRUCTION of countries and Nations has been the ‘monopoly’ of the Global West, atleast for the past half century. And I stand by it.
What Russia has done now is to have broken this ‘record’ of the West.
Georgia wasn’t destroyed, neither was Ukraine in the Donbas conflict. But this time it is different. V.E.R.Y different indeed. Hence the reactions from US / Europe that we see.
Try as they might, they can’t wish away the Bear. Not even with no overt military support. No way.
On that note, I got reminded of this one as well!
Seems quite apt under the current circumstances!
Fight or perish. Period.
I personally believe that this conflict (not specifically the Ukraine situation) was already in the making over the past decade and half or so since ‘liberalism’ became the flavour of the day. But I also believe it was mostly being shaped in the cognitive domain without any overt involvement of National militaries in the physical domain. It was a war of narratives thus far which has now, for a change, turned kinetic with both sides being sovereign Nations. Yet, some ppl continue to feel happy in the cognitive domain!
THIS, folks, is what social media and the war of narratives has done to us.
A successfully trended hashtag gives a sense of victory, even as Russian tanks are knocking on the doors of Kyiv!
Physical domain is where u will finally be told to put your money where your mouth is.
And it is here that the West is facing a decision dilemma.
You see, they hardly have any military power left in continental Europe!
Hence, the economic warfare being waged against Russia, of course with adequate checks and balances lest it come back to bite them.
But in their haste to satisfy the hysteria that they’ve built up in their own minds as well as their citizens’, they seem to be headed in a rapid downward spiral with ever increasing stringency of sanctions.
Never before has the monetary system been weaponized in this fashion!
Mind you, this is where it will impact us all as well.
If not today, then tomorrow for sure.
As I wrote above, the world as we know it, has changed for good.
Once the guns stop firing, there will be a mad scramble to find alternatives so that other potential adversaries don’t find themselves held hostage to a monetary system controlled by the US / UK.
The reason why the West has chosen to react so ‘violently’ (without boots on ground of course) is because they see the writing on the wall. If Russia is not defeated, yes DEFEATED, the world order that they have lorded over since the end of WW2 is likely to slip from their grip.
Dare I say, the West have got it wrong this time.
The balance of power has already shifted. What is happening now & what will happen next is merely the assertion of their power by the new leaders.
Of course, this transition too will NOT be pretty, or peaceful.
The current tools that the West is using is their control over the monetary system and info system, thanks to their social media giants. But what of their appetite for actual warfare against a well armed adversary in case it comes to that?
Here’s a quick question – Name ONE war that the USA has decisively won ever since the end of the second world war and left with its aims achieved.
Saying Panama or the other similar operation would be an insult to the military might of the USA, I’d say.
So try harder.
Btw, just came across this very interesting map. What is of interest is not what is written, but the relative divisions of the world. These more or less match the civilizational boundaries mentioned by Huntington, of course with some civilizations subsumed into these divisions.
So back to Western appetite for war.
With all the woke shit going on to which even their militaries are not immune, one can understand their reluctance to actually put boots on ground, despite Shri Comedian Ji of Ukraine crying desperately for that.
In fact, this just happened 👇
So what comes next ..
Well, for one, I’ll wait for Kyiv to fall, or for Ukraine to beg Russia for peace. When this happens, there will be a LOT of heartbreak all around primarily because of the propaganda fed to us all, thanks to the insane control over narrative by the West.
What has already happened, of course, is that Putin has called the bluff of the West once and for all. Western leaders (currently atleast) appear to be headless chickens even as Ukraine gets systematically dismantled by Russia, even as the Comedian’s calls get increasingly desperate.
He was created by social media.
He is ‘leading’ on social media.
He is PLEADING on social media.
Heck, he is even WINNING on social media!
But the Russian tank crews and other soldiers outside Kyiv haven’t got the memo!
West continues to hang on to fig leaves, even as the desperate pleas by Zelenskyy get louder and louder. So long as some Russian soldiers die, it doesn’t matter to them that thousands of Ukrainians – soldiers as well as civilians – die as well. Period.
However, what they do not (or perhaps they do) realize is that Russia has moved decisively not merely into Ukraine, but into Europe as well, by staking a claim as a major power.
I doubt that short of nukes, continental European Nations can individually, or even collectively, stand up to Russia, militarily. Reminded me of the full form of NATO I heard some years back – Needs America To Operate!
Sad, but true!
Come winters, they will need Russian gas as well and with it will go much of the sanctions. Of course, US elections of November will only get that much more ‘interesting’, to say the least.
So that is about Europe and NATO. Now a word about America.
Europe / NATO are but proxies for America, atleast in the current conflict and the western response to it in terms of sanctions.
That is a fact.
But .. there is one major actor that isn’t yet involved in this mess, yet.
Europe / NATO are but proxies for America, atleast in the current conflict and the western response to it in terms of sanctions.
That is a fact.
But .. there is one major actor that isn’t yet involved in this mess, yet.
Of course, they must be furiously taking notes. Just as they did after the First Gulf War and launched their military modernisation programme!
That modernisation, btw, is nearing completion.
Now put into context this warning by the Taiwanese President BEFORE the Russian Attack!
Well, China has potentially the MOST to gain from this war.
A weakened and isolated Russia goes that much faster into a Chinese embrace, economically as well. Remember, Putin waited for the Beijing Olympics to be over, before launching the attack! Yup, a Conspiracy Theory indeed!
Of course, Russian being the first ‘recipient’ of economic sanctions helps China prepare that much better for when the inevitable comes their way as well. But the question remains – Which way will China turn? Towards Taiwan, or towards Himalayas? Will they even do such a thing?
The last question in the tweet above is relatively easier to answer.
It is INEVITABLE, I’d say.
If not now then maybe a short distance in the future. But happen, it will. Especially, with Jinping Ji looking at going beyond a 10 year term soon, that too amidst a rapidly challenging internal situation, a diversion of this kind might actually come in handy. Of course, his role model – Mao – did exactly the same thing! As millions died during the ‘Great Leap Forward’, he attacked India!
Btw, that happened when West was busy with Cuban Missile Crisis! Just like currently and for the forseeable future as well, no?
Personally, with all my biases and opinions, I’d say that a war in the Himalayas, while not entirely implausible, may not be as likely as one over Taiwan. But then that is just my personal opinion. Feel free to disagree.
Of course, Taiwan too must be seeing the emerging situation keenly. If at all, one lesson that they too must have drawn by now is that they are going to fight all alone.
The USA has already lost in this respect, though not yet overtly.
A Chinese attack on Taiwan will require an American response for sure because otherwise America of 2022 becoming like the UK of post WW2 – a power in perpetual decline – will be there for all to see.
Thus, China gains doubly by going towards Taiwan – Reunification as well as Pre-eminence. Mind you, they may not even need to go kinetic (atleast to the extent Russia has gone). Even mere posturing, if met by a tepid American response might actually convince the Taiwanese to agree to an altered political status as part of the PRC, thanks also to the horrific visuals of the carnage that Ukraine is suffering, just because their Comedian-in-Charge chose to take in the snake oil peddled by the US / Europe at face value.
A Chinese attempt at Himalayan borders may not be as easily successful, without paying a larger cost, even if it succeeds at all. Hence my bet on Taiwan front getting activated.
But that does NOT mean that we need to lower our guard. One can never be too sure, or too prepared.
But regardless, the world will be a much more violent place over the coming decade or so. Remember, it took TWO world wars and a failed League of Nations to arrive at the current world order. The next world order won’t come any easier.
Talking about UN, I’ll just leave this here!
All I’ll say as I end this thread, folks, is ‘BRACE YOURSELVES’!
It is blood which moves the wheels of history..
Given the current situation, I bet the wheels are moving faster and faster each passing day.
Thanks for your patience. I think I will end this blog post here 🙏