Category Archives: economic sanctions

Zugzwang situations of US in Korea, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Turkey, Ukraine, etc.

After the USSR dissolved itself in 1989, the US pushed East. All of Eastern Europe fell under US influence, plus many republics of the former USSR such as the Baltic republics and Georgia. It was the greatest gain of geostrategic territory in human history in such a short amount of time. It was done without war, but through lies, deceptions, and false promises that were never kept. Russia, under Yeltsin, was on the verge of collapse. Life expectancy and demographics were collapsing. It appeared that the further fragmentation of Russia was inevitable. But one man finally aroused Russian defiance, and that man was Putin.

It was evident to the West that Russia under Putin would not buckle. On the contrary, Russia grew stronger. Like the Phoenix, it rose from the ashes. Despite its economically  small size compared to the US, China, and the EU, it is incomparably powerful due to its size, geographic position, natural wealth, and resilience of its people. It is present in the Pacific, Arctic, North Atlantic, Baltic, Central Europe-Kaliningrad, Central Asia, Black Sea without spending a kopek.

US, being essentially isolated geographically in North America must project power in order to be pertinent and to extract natural wealth from others. This policy has become unbearably expensive and the rewards have had diminishing returns with the passing of time.

As universal hegemon, the US is involved everywhere diplomatically, economically, and militarily, imposing its policy and worldview on others. The world has become very resentful and is starting to fight back.

One modus operandi of US foreign policy has been economic strangulation of economies of countries that do not follow US instructions. But lately, this policy has not been too successful. A good example is Iran. Many methods have been tried occultly with the participation of Israel but to no avail. Iran is getting stronger and stronger. The US and Israel may try a military option, but this is fraught with great danger.

The US Congress is legislating serious sanctions against Russia which the President will sign in order to weaken the Russians. It will fail. Russia is an autarchy (meaning a country who is economically independent, not the authoritarian definition) and such countries only get stronger. The German invasion of the USSR is a good example. Also, countries of the world are moving away from subservience to US and moving to independence. An excellent example is Turkey.

Thus, the US is caught in Zugzwang in many geographic situations of the world: North Korea, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, Venezuela, etc.  It is conducting military exercises constantly with its allies from the Baltic, Black Sea, Mediterranean, Persian Gulf, South China Sea to North Korea.

One can say that US foreign policy consists of a constant poking and provoking.

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The Geo-Political Motives of Anti-Russian Sanctions

General Von Clausewitz stated: War is the continuation of politics by other means. It can also be stated that in addition to war, economic sanctions are the continuation of politics by other means. The US is notorious for using economic sanctions to overthrow the governments that are not willing to be subservient to its’ interests by destroying their economies. Also, the US uses its’ economic clout to force friendly countries to enter into subservient alliances with the US. NATO is a classical example. The US used sanctions against the USSR from the beginning of its existence to its end.

With the demise of the USSR, the West considered Russia to be easy prey. Yeltsin made Russia an easy prey. Even Yeltsin realized when NATO bombed the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999  that the West was not what it pretended to be. In the 1990’s, the West started to plunder Russia to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars. The Russian fifth column and oligarchs participated in the plunder. By quirk of fate or by design, Yeltsin appoints Vladimir Putin as the Prime Minister of Russia at its greatest hour of need.

Putin immediately restores the Russian back bone. He made sure that Russia cannot and will not be taken for granted. Tensions develop between Russia and the West. Selective sanctions were applied against Russia by the US using the Magnitsky Act. The big break occurred with the Maidan coup d’état in the Ukraine in the spring of 2014. Crimea splits and returns to Russia via referendum and not aggression. Crimea was gifted to Ukraine in 1954 by Nikita Khruschov, leader of the Soviet Union at that time. Lugansk and Donetsk split from the Ukraine and became independent. The West cried aggression and imposed massive sanctions on Russia. The ruble was attacked, and collapsed from 29 rubles to one dollar to around seventy. The price of oil was collapsed from around 100 dollars to below 40. Russian officials were sanctioned. Credit to Russian banks and corporations was frozen. They tried to ban Russia from using SWIFT, Society for Worldwide International Financial Transactions. They backed off because they feared the consequences.

Russia responded. It banned all agricultural products from countries that imposed sanctions: the EU, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, and others. Result: boomerang. The Baltic republics are in super depression because they lost the Russian market for their dairy products, fish, and transport. Greece’s condition worsened with the Western embargo. The rest of the EU is in a recession which can be said to be severe. Some reports state that the EU has lost 500,000 jobs and three hundred billion euros of revenue due to Russian sanctions. Damage to the US has been minimal. The US still uses Russian delivery systems to carry its space capsules to the International Space Station. If the US had prevented Russia from using SWIFT, it is likely that Russia would have refused to transport US capsules to space station. Tit for tat.

Many EU countries are clamoring to end the sanctions. President Hollande will not run for re-election. Marine Le Pen of the National Front {Front National} will win. She will pursue independent economic and foreign policy for France. Chancellor Merkel’s re-election is in doubt. Beppe Grillo of Italy, founder of the Five Star Movement {Movimento Cinque Stella}, may be the next leader of Italy. Populism is breaking everywhere. Movements from subservience to Independence are evident on all continents

The idea behind the sanctions was to destroy Russia economically, partition it and control its immense natural wealth. The Ukraine was the first step. The Ukraine’s future is only with Russia. Russia is the Ukraine and the Ukraine is Russia. They have a common culture, blood, and soul.

Clausewitz stated: Russia cannot be defeated.