On June 16 professor Brzezinski gave a speech at the Woodrow Wilson Center, dedicated to the ongoing turmoil in Ukraine and US-NATO political agenda regarding the issue. Referring to a mysterious specter of non-existent “Russian chauvinism”, Zbigniew Brzezinski spoke about the mechanics of deterrence and revitalization of containment strategy directed against Russia. The geostrategist is convinced that “deterrence” is the most effective foreign policy tool.
It should be noted that some of Brzezinski’s assertions surprisingly resemble those of the notorious US State Department’s spokeswoman Jen Psaki. He claimed, for instance, that “Russia has generated in Ukraine widespread hostility towards Russia on the part of some 40 million people,” while the recent survey conducted on April 25-29, 2014 by the influential Razumkov Centre in Kiev indicated that despite of the aggravation of Russia-Ukrainian relations more than a half of respondents consider Russians a friendly and fraternal nation. According to the other controversial statement made by the geostrategist Russia can’t be considered a unique and self sufficient civilization. Dr. Brzezinski has probably forgotten about the 1000-year Russian history, the kind the US being a very “young” state can’t boast yet. His notions regarding the “Russian chauvinism” seem utterly ridiculous: in a multi-national country with about 200 ethnic groups, living side-by-side for hundreds of years and enjoying equal rights and opportunities, the “chauvinism” – a form of radical nationalism and belligerent belief in national superiority – is impossible. Interestingly enough, the term “Russian chauvinism” was invented and used by the Russian Bolsheviks party and its prominent leader Vladimir Lenin in the beginning of the 20 century. It seems rather symbolic that the expression popular among communists has been lately inherited by the western liberals and particularly Zbigniew Brzezinski. As for Dr. Brzezinski’s belief that Russia should be a part of Europe, we should point out that more than three-quarters of Russia’s territory lies in Asia. That is why historians and ethnographers qualify Russia’s identity as the Eurasian state-civilization.
Zbigniew Brzezinski is widely known for his russophobic stance. Stuck irretrievably in a Cold War reality the former National Security Adviser is most likely unable to evaluate correctly and impartially the current situation in the world. Behind the high flown phrases of Dr.Brzezinski about the US global leadership and Russia’s weakness his growing irritation is hidden. What does exasperate an old American hawk?
Sino-Russian alliance and Eurasian Union
“Russia has to understand that Ukraine will not be a member of some mythical Eurasian Union that President Putin is trying to promote on the basis of this new doctrine of a special position for Russia in the world,” claims Dr. Brzezinski. He addresses Russia’s middle class, saying: “the real place for Russia is as an important country in Europe <…> What does China mean for the future of Russia?”
Referring to Russia’s elites and the middle class the geostrategist should remember that it was the US who launched an unprecedented sanctions war against Russia, pushing it straight into the arms of China. If the US wants to win over the Russian middle class it should suggest some tangible preferences and a clear prospective of business profits instead of amorphous American “values,” used as a sort of glass necklace for a savage tribe. Right now, however, the US has lost its positions to China, a more trusted and reliable partner.
It should be noted that the rapid development of Sino-Russian alliance as well as ratification of the Eurasian Economic Union Treaty this year deal a serious blow to the US geopolitical interests and economic plans on the Eurasian continent. Russia’s initiative to create a harmonious economic community stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok is doubtlessly far more favorable than a New Silk Road project developed by the US, which includes some highly volatile regions of Central Asia living under a permanent terrorist threat. Due to its geographical position, Russia a priori has a competitive advantage as a convenient and secure logistic hub, a reliable natural bridge between the West and the East, Europe and the developing Asia, according to experts. We can hardly call the Eurasian Union a “mythical one”: its economic mechanisms are working and have already born tangible fruits. Needless to say that a population of 170 million people makes the Eurasian Economic Union one of the biggest consumer markets on the planet with a quarter of all the world’s proven mineral resources valued of up to $40 trillion. Being an open economic community the EEU seamlessly integrates into the global market structure. Speaking disparagingly of the EEU’s prospective Brzezinski, however, can’t deny the fact that the US is unable to provide its European partners with similar market shares in Eurasia.
There is a serious dilemma: how to maintain control over the EU allies and prevent their integration into apparently profitable Eurasian economic community? Zbigniew Brzezinski’s universal solution is deterrence and threatening.
New Cold War containment strategy
“In the most immediate sense, the stakes involve, of course, the issue that the use of force in Crimea and the ongoing and sustained effort to destabilize parts of Ukraine pose a threat to the post-World War II notions of international arrangements, and particularly the exclusion of the use of force in resolving territorial issues. That has been a cardinal assumption of the European order after World War II. And Russia has been part of it, including through the treaties that it has signed. But it now is challenging that,” Dr. Brzezinski says.
The US politicians and pro-American mass media are inclined to portray Russia’s actions towards Ukraine as an unjustified “outrage”. The conflict, however, has not been created by Russia and it is not Russia who is responsible for the bloodshed in the East of Ukraine, authoritative political analysts admit. Although Dr. Brzezinski does not have any evidence to back his claims, he insists that Russia is supplying weapons to the militant groups in Eastern Ukraine.
Zbigniew Brzezinski’s statement about the US’s dedication to the inviolability of post-WWII European borders and “the exclusion of the use of force in resolving territorial issues” looks illogical and may cause a surprise. It seems like the former National Adviser is suffering from a strange form of amnesia that has totally erased the facts of US-NATO violation of the European order from his memory. Let us name a few: a gradual splitting of Yugoslavia supported by the US and its European allies in 1990-2008 that drastically changed the map of Europe, the NATO military aggression against Yugoslavia in 1999 and the occupation of Kosovo. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Treaty Organization led to the total political and geographical rearrangement of the post-WWII order in Europe unanimously hailed by the West. Dr. Brzezinski is blatantly demonstrating a double-standards approach: international laws breach is fully justified in the eyes of the US if it serves the American interests.
Predictably enough after a preamble devoted to the prominent threat posed by Russia to the Eastern European countries, Dr. Brzezinski calls to increase of NATO’s military presence in Europe and to start weapon deliveries to Ukraine.
Revision of NATO’s membership concept
Dr. Brzezinski proposes a new interesting provision to the Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty:
“I have in mind, particularly, a review of the historical paradox involved in the very important Article 5. Article 5 provides for the procedure in undertaking a military response to an aggression directed at it in general or at one or two or more of its members. You doubtless recall that Article 5 has a provision that decisions to engage in hostilities by the alliance have to be unanimous. This, in other words, means that every country has a veto,” the geostrategist says. “One possible solution might be simply the adoption of the provision that there will be no veto right in the alliance for sustained, enduring under-performers of jointly agreed commitments. Why should a member that doesn’t meet NATO commitments practically in total then have the right to veto the other members’ right to engage in collective self-defense?”
In other words, the former National Security Adviser suggests to abandon NATO members’ equality principle, increasing the decision-making role of the United States and its key partners, and maintain greater control over the other participants of the Treaty.
Recognizing that “Ukraine will not be a member of NATO,” Brzezinski, however, hints at the fact that NATO may support the country without joining it: “It doesn’t follow that a country whose security NATO has an interest in has to be a NATO member. NATO can have an interest in its security, but without having it in NATO.” This very thesis as well as the key points of Brzezinski’s speech is strikingly similar to the provisions of S.2277 bill “Russian Agression Prevention Act of 2014” designed and sponsored by the US neocons in order to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on military needs and promote the US fracking firms in post-Soviet states of Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia. It should be noted that authors of the bill propose to grant Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova, a status of “major non-NATO ally” which typically hosts US military bases and receive military suppliers from the US. It is obvious that Dr. Brzezinski and the law-makers Senator John McCain and Bob Corker, which developed the bill, are serving the interests of the same US political and financial group.
Bolstering civil strife in Ukraine
“I feel that we should make it clear to the Ukrainians that if they are determined to resist, as they say they are and seemingly they are trying to do so (albeit not very effectively), we will provide them with anti-tank weapons, hand-held anti-tank weapons, hand-held rockets—weapons capable for use in urban short range fighting,” noted Zbigniew Brzezinski during his speech.
The former National Security Adviser insists that the US must provide urban warfare equipment to the Kiev government in order to protect the regime against Russian invasion. Since there are no signs of invasive military preparations conducted by Russia, for what purposes these weaponry supplies will be used by Kiev?
Daniel McAdams, the Executive Director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, thinks that “ethnic cleansing of ethnic Russians and Russian speakers may be exactly what Brzezinski has in mind.”
“The country’s post-coup president, Petr Poroshenko, was very clear, ending the ceasefire (that wasn’t much of a ceasefire) by stating that “We will attack and we will liberate our land!” Does that mean liberating it from the “others” who do not accept rule by the post-coup government? Those who Kiev’s prime minister Arseniy “Yats” Yatsenyuk has already called “subhumans”?” writes Daniel McAdams.
Continuous urban warfare will doubtlessly plunge Ukraine into a lingering civil conflict and lead to a humanitarian catastrophe. However, the old American hawk does not care much about it. Through the Ukrainian turmoil, the main task described by Dr. Brzezinski’s in “The Grand Chessboard” is being accomplished: “Without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be a Eurasian empire.”