Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Playing with fire.

It is also symptomatic of the entire anti-Russian narrative to ignore similar NGO activities by the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and even Spain through a great variety of platforms that they have established around the world, with an emphasis on former colonies or territories of historical interest.

Put in this context, the Russian efforts are exceedingly modest and would never justify the attention that they are receiving from Moscow’s detractors. But the broader lesson is that the authors of such reports never look in the mirror and ask what they themselves are doing. Everything Russia is doing is taken to be unique, calculating and sinister whereas the West’s actions set a gold standard for selflessness, generosity and good governance.[1]

Looking back at the run up to WWII, I invariably wonder what was so freaking urgent about jumping into that ghastly spasm of murder, bloodshed, pain, and destruction. Especially after the horror of WWI which was, like, a kleww that modern warfare was something terrible beyond all imaginings. But, no, those smug, scheming, blind pricks wanted to play at The Great Game and millions upon millions paid the price.

Apparently, this has all escaped the notice of the current crop of savants, saviors, and snakes who recklessly poke at the flanks of Russia and mouth garbage like "Arab Spring," "regime change," "Assad must go," and "Russian adeventurism."

At the conclusion of WWII, efforts to establish collective security and mechanisms to avoid catastrophes that had just happened were made with great fanfare and solemnity. It was all for nought and Obongo bombs and subverts the sovereign state of Syria (actual member of the United Nations) with impunity and no, that's no, resort to the mechanisms or principles of the U.N. and certainly not the U.S. Constitution.

The love of risk, war and death is as alive and vigorous as it has ever been. Ann Barnhardt might well be on to something.

[1] "Is It Too Late to Save Braindead Europe From Sleepwalking Toward War? "The momentum into a new Cold War – and possibly toward World War III – is growing stronger." By Gilbert Doctorow, Russia Insider, 6/7/16.


Tim Turner said...

Bunny, I apologize. I'm a little under the infuence and have been up for 36 hours. And I can't find the article, but I'm still seething that some senator or something claims that Trump or the alt-right is "just as un-Amrican" as McCarthy was.

First, to get McCarthy out of the way. He was boorish, apparently. But he wasn't wrong. There were confirmed communist agents in the American government. It's unAmerican to point that out?

But, to your post:

"Looking back at the run up to WWII, I invariably wonder what was so freaking urgent about jumping into that ghastly spasm of murder, bloodshed, pain, and destruction."

Seriously? "Freaking urgent?" We had a very strong anti-war and anti-foreign-involvement movement in America in the '30s. And, as near as I can tell, there wasn't some "neo-con" movement in Roosevelt's administration that had much sway. (Granted, some did think we would have to enter sooner or later.)

But, "freaking urgent?" Hitler's well-documented putsch, the Anschluss. the Sudetenland, the attempt (later successful in September, 1939) to form the Tripartite Alliance, the invasion of Poland, the invasion and victory over France, the occupation of Norway, the invasion of Denmark, the pact with - then invasion of - Russia. . . we sat out all that!

I know you know all this. But you wonder why we were so freaking urgent??

I realize that many are probably demonizing Russia for political gain here in the land of the terminally ignorant and perpetually entitled. But I've read a lot of the sources you cite and I think you're drinking some kool-aid.

Honest to goodness, I think I'd have preferred Putin as president for the past 8 years, and I know we've been lying and obfuscating our political ass off about Syria.

But the "Russsian sphere" is no less calculating or self-interested than the Chinese or American sphere. It seems to me - after reading several of the articles at the site you cite - that they are apologists and no less self-serving than anything here.

You probably have valid points. But, like Caroline Glick remonstrating about Bosnia, you're pointing at a symptom rather than the disease.

Again, I apologize. I really haven't added anything to the discussion of Soviet-American relations. But I think you're parroting some views that are as one-sided as the clueless thing that passes for diplmacy or political reasoning in our own discourse. Until we get our own world-view straightened out, I don't think we can even begin to understand anyone else's.

Roy Lofquist said...

"He was famous long ago, for playing electric violin on Desolation Row".

And therein lies a tale. Our elders, our wise men, our intellectual leaders made their bones a long time ago. To deviate from their own orthodoxy risks calumny, an existential threat to their position on this mortal coil. And that is why their ideas are ossified, past their sell date.

Think about Harry Belafonte. Did he ever sing anything besides The Banana Boat song? I dunno. Nobody else remembers either.

Col. B. Bunny said...

Tim, McCarthy was right, as you know. I read a fair amount about him when I was in college but I don't remember that he was that boorish. I suspect that he faced then what Trump faces now, namely an attempt to make him seem like a troglodyte. Herblock used to draw him with a five o'clock shadow (as he did Nixon). Something I read recently said that he was, in fact, careful when talking about security risks. He didn't name them publicly but focused on the fact that the government had many risks in the ranks. I have Stan Evans' book and when I read it I will look for evidence to the contrary.

I will defer to Pat Buchanan for a more scholarly treatment of why WWII was an unnecessary war. Suffice it to say that Hitler's takeover of Austria was a minor matter in the scheme of things. Austrians welcomed the Anschluss and if they weren't that torqued about it I don't see why anyone else should have wanted to make it a casus belli. Mark Weber of the Institute for Historical Research made the point in a podcast that the Germans had a legitimate complaint about the treatment of Germans in Poland and that the issue of Danzig was also a legitimate one, Germans there having been isolated from Germany by the disastrous Versailles Agreement.

The really disastrous mistake of Britain and, I think, France was to provide guarantees to Poland vis-a-vis Germany and that led to the Poles being unreasonable in their dealings with Germany. It was the English and the French who declared war on Germany and Hitler is said to have been shocked that they did. The phony war that ensued surely was a lost opportunity to work toward a different outcome. Even when Hitler had the English cornered at Dunkirk he appears to have let them escape as he had affection and respect for them.

I don't recall the details of the German complaints against the Czechs. I recall vaguely that there was also an issue of the mistreatment of the Germans there. I know Hitler was after lebensraum but there is also the elephant in the living room of how much of this bad feeling and maneuvering was founded in the treaty that was jammed down the throat of Germany after WWI. I think the sanctimony of the English should have been tempered by the blockade of Germany after WWI that caused thousands of deaths by starvation.

There was the America First movement in the U.S. but, bottom line, it failed in the face of FDR's determination to involve the U.S. in Europe.

As for the invasion of the Soviet Union I subscribe to Suvorov's thesis in his Icebreaker, namely, that Stalin had designs on Europe and the German attack was a preemptive move.

I don't pretend to be a scholar of WWII so I'm not going to fall on my sword on any of this, except for the matter of the stupidity in giving ironclad guarantees to the Poles. The settlement of the First War was stupid and unjust and the supposed statesmen in France, Britain, and the U.S. failed to appreciate just how bad it was and try harder to work something out. Churchill himself said that jaw, jaw, jaw is way better than war, war, war. If he said that after the war it was a pity he didn't put that insight into practice before it got started.

con'td . . .

Col. B. Bunny said...

cont'd . . .

It strikes me as audacious that the British who looked with disdain on the actions of the Germans themselves were the greatest imperial power in the world and the French had their own colonial interests. Whence their red-faced outrage over the German takeover of some small portion of the globe which did not threaten them?

I read a Reuters article today on NATO and the Baltics today and it's just pathetic how the Russian "threat" to them is being grossly inflated and distorted by NATO and the Baltic nations. There is much Sturm und Drang about needing to position NATO forces in the Baltic and the need for aggressive aerial patrolling. This is such crap, just as our manufactured hysteria over Assad in Syria. But in the Baltics, esp., we're the dog being wagged by the Baltic tail. The British failed to appreciate the awful firepower of the machine gun in the First War and the utility of armor in the Second. I guess we can go down in a blaze (sic) of glory having underestimated Russian determination not to take any crap from us and the developments they have made in their air defense and nuclear forces.

No need to apologize. I don't see the Russians as being aggressive at all and, if anything, they've been remarkably restrained. As I have said ad museum Crimea and E. Ukraine would be firmly under Ukrainian government control as we speak had the U.S. not done its utmost to bring down the elected government of Ukraine, which we as the saints and savants that we are found to be wanting.

Col. B. Bunny said...

Mr. Lofquist, the less said about that scumbag Harry Belafonte the better. You're right, though. That's the only song I remember of his, not to mention his many, many statements since along the lines of what a stinking garbage heap the U.S. is. Charming man.

I think there is an orthodoxy about America's role in the world and our capabilities that is right out of Hollywood post-1945 and the position of unrivaled anything in the world in the immediate aftermath of the war. Every advantage we enjoy then has been discarded by fools and thieves since and we are seriously nearing the end of that post-WWII paradigm of American decency, economic strength, and military power.

Nobody running the government these days seems to have noticed and we can't even bring ourselves to identify clearly who our enemy is.