Tag Archives: Europe

The attack on Western Europe: you cannot win a war if you don’t understand that you are fighting one. By Ugo Bardi

The Europeans are beginning to understand that the U.S. proxy war in Ukraine is against Europe. From Ugo Bardi at senecaeffect.com:

Image: Earth against UFOs (1956)
A typical science fiction trope is that when the aliens invade Earth, they do so in secret, capturing the minds of single earthlings rather than coming in with bombing raids. The task of the hero, then, is to convince the authorities that Earth is under attack before it is too late. Something similar may be happening with the war in Ukraine. Europeans, just like most Western citizens, still don’t seem to understand what’s going on, but the idea that it is a war directed against Western Europe is slowly gaining traction in the memesphere. It has not yet reached the mainstream discourse, and it probably never will. But some ideas don’t need to be shared by 51% of the people to start having an effect on politics. The message that Europe is being crushed by its supposed allies and its own government may eventually reach the “critical mass” needed to be heard and acted upon. I have already discussed this subject in some of my recent posts, “What is the next thing that will hit us” and others. Here is Noah Carl’s recent take on his blog, published with his kind permission. His conclusion is that:
 
“geopolitical developments since the start of Russia’s invasion certainly look convenient from the perspective of US hawks: Russia’s military has been severely weakened; Nord Stream 2 has been sanctioned and sabotaged; US LNG exports to Europe have surged; European companies have started relocating to America; and the NATO alliance is stronger than ever. 
US hawks 1; everyone else 0.


Image: US Navy, FA-18 launch during Inherent Resolve, 2014
When it comes to explaining how we ended up with Russia launching a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and Europe proceeding to cut itself off from its main energy supplier, there are two main camps.

One camp says that Putin is an imperialist bent on recreating the Soviet Union, who invaded Ukraine (a country he doesn’t consider real) in order to expand Russia’s territory and population. According to this camp, there’s nothing the West could have done to prevent Putin’s invasion short of allowing Ukraine to become a hollowed-out vassal state, or arming Ukraine to the teeth in the faint hope of deterring Russian bellicosity.

The other camp says that Putin saw US/NATO involvement in Ukraine as a threat to Russian interests (including both the security of Russia itself and the interests of ethnic Russians in the Donbas), and he invaded the country as a way to neutralise that threat. According to this camp, the West could have prevented Putin’s invasion by enforcing an agreement along the lines of Minsk II, i.e., one that enshrined Ukrainian neutrality.

The key element here is US/NATO involvement, since without such involvement Kiev would never have risked provoking its larger and more powerful neighbour. Despite this, few in the second camp try to explain why the US/NATO got involved in Ukraine. Or if they do, they chalk up to “misguided policy” or “policy mistakes”; US officials were just too wedded to the principle that every state can choose its own alliances.

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General Armageddon’s March to the Sea, by Declan Hayes

After General Surovikin (General Armageddon) gets done, Russia will probably have the Donbass, Crimea, and all of Ukraine’s southern coast on the Black Sea. From Declan Hayes at strategic-culture.org:

Once Russia liberates Odessa and lifts the siege of Transnistria, Borrell, von der Leyen and others will stand naked before truth’s eternal flame.

Although total war has its modern roots in Sherman’s march to the sea, it is an American play-book that has now run its course. It ultimately failed the Wehrmacht, it ultimately failed the U.S. terror machine in Vietnam and, thanks to the fortitude of the Russian Armed Forces, it is spectacularly failing again as General Surovikin bulldozes his way to Odessa.

Just as General Grant’s March Through Georgia broke the back of the Confederate Army, so also is General Surovikin’s march to the Black Sea slicing through NATO’s lies like a hot knife shredding butter, portending future upsets that will hasten the descent of Borrell’s vaunted EU Garden of Eden into the abyss, as its last semblances of credibility, law and order dissipate, just as they long ago died in Kiev, the capital of Zelensky’s rump Reich and just as NATO has long been fixated on destroying them in Syria and Lebanon.

Though chutzpah is a Hebrew word, the NATO’s BBC outlet have that same arrogance, that same chutzpah in spades when they distort the truth to mask that they are the biggest rogues of the lot. Take their coverage of Saudi Arabia’s captagon crisis. There is an insane amount of money to be made smuggling captagon into Saudi Arabia, whose rich kids use it to fuel their interminable orgies. Much of this captagon is produced not in Syria but in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, which has become much more anarchistic with the relative easing of Hezbollah control since the NATO alliance instigated Lebanon’s 2019 financial collapse. Beirut’s large Saudi contingent handle the captagon logistics.

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German Interview, with Michael Hudson

The U.S. is turning Europe into a dependency. From Michael Hudson at unz.com:

Dear Prof Hudson,

Once again: Herzliche Grüße aus Berlin!

Last time we spoke for German print magazine “Four” in June. Right now I also work for MEGA Radio, a radio news station for Germany, Austria and Switzerland. We broadcast from Vienna and are located in Berlin, Bavaria and Austria.

Hereby I would like to invite you to another interview via ZOOM to record it for our radio program. It would be an update on our last interview. Maybe around 20-30 Minutes long.

See also our last talk:

I don’t know if that’s too short notice, but would you have time for such a conversation next week or the week after?

Otherwise, also at the beginning of January.

 

Here are my questions:

(1.) You made some predictions in our last interview for “Four” magazine which became true.

You talked about crisis for German companies in the production of fertilizer. This just hit the headlines weeks after our interview.

You also said: “What you characterize as “blocking Nord Stream 2” is really a Buy-American policy.” This now also became more than clear after the destroyed Nord Stream pipelines.

Could you comment that?

MH: U.S. foreign policy has long concentrated on control of the international oil trade. This trade is a leading contributor to the U.S. balance of payments, and its control gives U.S. diplomats the ability to impose a chokehold on other countries.

Oil is the key supplier of energy, and the rise in labor productivity and GDP for the leading economies tends to reflect the rise in energy use per worker. Oil and gas are not only for burning for energy, but are also a basic chemical input for fertilizers, and hence for agricultural productivity, as well as for much plastic and other chemical production.

So U.S. strategists recognize that cutting countries off from oil and its derivatives will stifle their industry and agriculture. The ability to impose such sanctions enables the U.S. to make countries dependent on compliance with U.S. policy so as not to be “excommunicated” from the oil trade.

U.S. diplomats have been telling Europe for many years not to rely on Russian oil and gas. The aim is twofold: to deprive Russia of its major trade surplus, and to capture the vast European market for U.S. oil producers. U.S. diplomats convinced German leaders not to approve the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, and finally used the excuse of the NATO war with Russia in Ukraine to act unilaterally to arrange the destruction of both Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines.

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After the Ukraine Is Over, Many a European Heart is Aching, by Batiushka

Europe is going to end up the big loser in the Ukraine-Russia war. From Batiushka at thesaker.is:

Northern Europe, as far south as northern Italy, is now in the grip of a wave of icy cold (no doubt, the result of global warming). As a result, observers are expecting the Russian winter offensive in the Ukraine to start all the sooner, though nobody knows when. This month or next? Maybe a dramatic entry from Belarus, cutting off NATO supplies? Nobody knows. For the moment, Allied forces are content to grind down the undersupplied and freezing Kiev regime conscripts and mercenaries in situ, hoping that perhaps they will simply surrender en masse, despite the regime’s guns poking in their backs. Conditions are such that this could happen with very few Russian losses. There is no hurry. Over 500,000 Allied soldiers and 500 winter camouflage tanks are waiting for their moment to move in and denazify the Ukraine. They will wait for the right moment.

Introduction: The Liberation of Europe

Russia could no longer allow a hostile, US-controlled, NATO-armed and soon-to-be-nuclear Ukraine to exist. Therefore, it is being liberated. It should have happened long before, but Russia was much too weak to do so before. When the Zelensky regime falls, billions of dollars of Western arms and supplies will fall into Russian hands. The Kiev regime’s Western-incurred indebtedness to the West for arms and supplies over the last nearly nine years will be cancelled. US-exploited Kiev regime territory, 40% of the whole, will be taken back without compensation. This will be a small measure of compensation for the destruction that the US and its European vassals, including the Minsk I and Minsk II liars of Germany and France, have caused in the Ukraine, especially in the much-tried Donbass.

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The U.S. Cuckoo in the European Nest, by Alasdair Macleod

It hasn’t entered the pretty little heads of American policy makers that Russia will dictate terms in Ukraine. Although the U.S. is losing its empire, Europe will pay the heaviest price for blindly accepting such thinking. From Alasdair Macleod at strategic-culture.org:

For Europe, its unreflective taking of this American ‘cuckoo’ thinking into its own European nest is nothing short of catastrophic.

Larry Johnson – a long veteran of both the CIA and the State Department – pinpoints the ‘cuckoo’ nestling at the bottom of the ‘nest’ of western thinking about Ukraine. The bird has two closely related parts: the upper layer is the conceptual framework positing that the U.S. faces two distinct spheres of contention: first, U.S. vs Russia, and secondly, U.S. vs China.

The essential mental framework behind this ‘cuckoo’ – just to be plain – is wholly U.S.-centric: It is the view of the world from someone peering out from Washington, tinted by wishful thinking.

It is truly a ‘cuckoo’ (i.e. the malicious insertion of an interloper amongst the legitimate chicks), because these battlescapes are not two, as claimed, but one. How so?

These two conflicts are not distinct, but interconnect through the western refusal to acknowledge that it is Western cultural pretensions of superiority that are the crux to the unfolding process of today’s geopolitical restructuring.

The purpose of the cuckoo is to erase this pivotal aspect from the conceptual framing, and then to reduce the whole to abstract power politics where Russia and China can be played off – one against the other.

Plainly put, the bifurcation U.S. vs China separate to U.S. vs Russia serves principally to ‘bed-down’ the growing cuckoo.

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The Many Interwoven ‘Wars’ – A Rough Guide Through the Fog, by Alastair Crooke

We’re in a turbulent time and it’s only going to get more turbulent. From Alastair Crooke at strategic-culture.org:

We now have an embarrassment of ‘wars’ of which paradoxically, Ukraine is perhaps of lesser strategic import – though it does retain significant symbolic content. A ‘flag’ around which narratives are spun and support rallied.

Yes, there are no less than five overlapping and interlinked ‘wars’ underway – and they need to be clearly differentiated to be well understood.

These last weeks have witnessed several epochal shifts: The Samarkand Summit; the OPEC+ decision to reduce the oil production of member nations by a (headline) two million barrels per day as of next month; and President Erdogan’s explicit declaration that “Russia and Turkey are together; working together”.

Bedrock U.S. allies, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, UAE, India, South Africa, Egypt and groupings such as OPEC+ are taking a major step toward autonomy, and toward the coalescence of non–Western nations into a coherent bloc – acting to its own interests and doing politics ‘its own way’.

This brings us closer to the multipolar world that Russia and China have been preparing over several years – a process that signifies ‘the war’ of geo-strategic de-coupling from the western global ‘order’.

It is fought, on the one hand, by presenting Russia and China as too distrustful of each other to be partners. And by Russia as being so weak, so dysfunctional and erratic (ready to use tactical nukes), that the ‘with us’ or ‘against us’ binary compels states to side with the West. In this instance, Ukraine is held up as the shining ‘Camelot’ around which to gather, to combat the ‘darkness’.

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The ‘War of Terror’ may be about to hit Europe, by Pepe Escobar

Nothing says the war in Ukraine will stay confined to Ukraine. From Pepe Escobar at thesaker.is:

Never underestimate a wounded and decaying Empire collapsing in real time.

Imperial functionaries, even in a “diplomatic” capacity, continue to brazenly declare that their exceptionalist control over the world is mandatory.

If that’s not the case, competitors may emerge and steal the limelight – monopolized by US oligarchies. That, of course, is absolute anathema.

The imperial modus operandi against geopolitical and geoeconomic competitors remains the same: avalanche of sanctions, embargos, economic blockades, protectionist measures, cancel culture, military uptick in neighboring nations, and assorted threats. But most of all, warmongering rhetoric – currently elevated to fever pitch.

The hegemon may be “transparent” at least in this domain because it still controls a massive international network of institutions, financial bodies, politicos, CEOs, propaganda agencies and the pop culture industry. Hence this supposed invulnerability breeding insolence.

Panic in the “garden”

The blowing up of Nord Stream (NS) and Nord Stream 2 (NS2) – everybody knows who did it, but the suspect cannot be named – took to the next level the two-pronged imperial project of cutting off cheap Russian energy from Europe and destroying the German economy.

From the imperial perspective, the ideal subplot is the emergence of a US-controlled Intermarium – from the Baltic and the Adriatic to the Black Sea – led by Poland, exercising some sort of new hegemony in Europe, on the heels of the Three Seas Initiative.

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Chinese Refiners Are Betting Big On European Fuel Demand, by Irina Slav

Chinese refiners are making a healthy vigorish, or vig, (bettors’ slang for the bookie’s cut) taking in Russian oil, refining it, and selling the products to Europe. From Irina Slave at oilprice.com:

  • China’s oil imports jumped by 2 million barrels per day in September as the country prepared to supply fuel demand growth in Europe.
  • The EU has an embargo on Russian crude coming into effect in less than two months and then an embargo on fuels two months after that.
  • Europe will be hoping that China’s domestic demand remains weak, as it could become a key source of oil products over winter.

Crude oil imports into Asia jumped in September. Normally such news would spark hope for demand and, consequently, prices, but this time it’s more complicated. And it has less to do with Asian demand than demand in Europe.Oil imports in Asia rose by more than 2 million barrels daily last month, Reuters’ Clyde Russell reported in his latest column, noting that the bulk went to China and Singapore.

He then went on to point out that both China and Singapore had gone through refinery maintenance in August and utilization rates were up in September. On the one hand, it’s the normal preparation for winter. On the other, the EU has an embargo on Russian crude coming into effect in less than two months and then an embargo on fuels two months after that.

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Is the US Shutting Down Power to Europe? By Dr. Joseph Mercola

You sure couldn’t blame the Europeans for thinking the U.S. is trying to shut down their power. From Dr. Joseph Mercola at theburningplatform.com:

Story at-a-glance

  • September 26, 2022, massive “leaks” were detected in two Russian pipelines, Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2, which deliver natural gas from Russia to Europe underneath the Baltic Sea
  • It was quickly determined the leaks were the result of intentional sabotage. Germany will partner with Denmark and Sweden to investigate the explosions using navy, police and intelligence services from the three countries
  • One day after the Nord Stream sabotage, a new Polish natural gas pipeline was inaugurated. Israel has also been in negotiations with the EU to supply natural gas to Europe
  • Western officials and media blame Russia itself. The Washington Post suggested Russian President Vladimir Putin is “weaponizing the Nord Stream pipelines,” and Bob Rae, Canada’s ambassador to the United Nations, accused Russia of “using pollution as an act of war.” Putin has dismissed such allegations as “stupid,” and is placing the blame on the U.S.
  • In a September 27, 2022, show, Fox News host Tucker Carlson laid the blame at the feet of the Biden administration. Columbia University professor Jeffrey Sachs, an economist and public policy analyst, also believes the pipelines were struck by the U.S. as a means of damaging the Russian economy, something that sanctions have failed to accomplish

September 26, 2022, massive “leaks” were detected in two Russian pipelines, Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2, which deliver natural gas from Russia to Europe underneath the Baltic Sea.

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Fanaticism Of The Apocalypse, by Michael Shellenberger

As people freeze, humanitarian Greens fight fossil fuels in favor of intermittent energy. From Michael Shellenberger at michaelshellenberger.substack.com:

As Europeans burn garbage to stay warm, climate activists step up the war on natural gas

Members of Extinction Rebellion called on African leaders to end the production of natural gas in Cape Town, South Africa on October 4, 2022. (Photo by Brenton Geach/Gallo Images via Getty)

“Some men just want to watch the world burn.”

— Alfred Pennyworth


In Europe, they’re burning garbage to stay warm. “It’s so bad this season that you can smell trash burning every day, which is completely new,”  said the 35-year-old mother of three from Jablonna, Poland, near Warsaw. “Rarely can you smell a regular fuel. It’s scary to think what happens when it really gets cold.” The Polish government suspended quality regulations on coal burning for those who can still afford it; 60% of households no longer can. Because of all the garbage burning, the government may soon hand out masks so its residents don’t inhale toxic fumes. Said one of Poland’s most powerful politicians last month, “one needs to burn almost everything, except for tires and similarly harmful things.” The government estimates that 40,000 people died annually from premature deaths from air pollution before the current crisis.

Forests are being hammered. In Estonia and Finland, forests that had been set aside to capture carbon dioxide to reduce climate change are now being so heavily logged that they are net emitters. Hungary lifted conservation regulations so old-growth forests could be logged; it then banned the export of wood pellets. “People buy wood pellets thinking they’re the sustainable choice, but in reality, they’re driving the destruction of Europe’s last wild forests,” said one conservationist. Wood pellets prices have doubled even in nuclear-heavy France which, under pressure from Germany, and in the grip of renewable energy mania, had been shutting down its nuclear plants so rapidly that it had stopped properly maintaining them. Romania has been forced to cap the price of firewood, which had skyrocketed. Burning wood releases more greenhouse gas emissions than burning coal, something most experts finally acknowledge.

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