SOME END GAME THOUGHTS AS WE MOVE DEEPER INTO THE ‘ICE COLD WAR’
We are moving ever deeper into what I call the ‘Ice Cold War’, due to differentiation from the ‘Cold War’ by the relative absence of diplomatic efforts seen during that war.
In the Ice Cold War agreement derived from diplomatic efforts (unless there is a major benefit to the USA) is seen by the United States as a barrier and hindrance to its ultimate goal of the total elimination of those it sees as its enemies.
The signals were all there prior to the inauguration of Joe Biden as U.S. president that his presidency would see the further division of the world into two and that the push by the USA to eliminate those it decided to after 9/11 was to continue and be boosted further. Gathering as many new allies as possible and reinforcing old ones was to be the primary context for this push. Alongside this would be an unquestioning demonisation of as many aspects of the “enemy” as possible.
There can only be one winner in this Ice Cold War. Neither of the two protagonists can afford to be defeated. Of course, there is only one primary aggressor and that is quite clearly the USA. The ‘other side’ is intent on developing ever-greater trading networks and in enhancing the quality of life of their populations, uninterested in spreading any particular ideology and open to agreements of all kinds.
That Russia and China should work together, make agreements of mutual benefit and defence against a power seeking to destroy their systems of governance is obvious.
It might be thought that the USA and its allies are acting within what could be considered the normal parameters of the geopolitical world that represents the pragmatic approach whereby the most disastrous outcomes are avoided. I believe this is no longer the case and this is for two primary reasons:
1. The USA and its allies have to this moment largely dominated the world due to their collective power, reach and influence. Historically they have been able to rely on immense manipulative leverage right across the globe. They are now in imminent danger of being eclipsed by China and those with a similar geopolitical approach to her and minded to be her allies for the foreseeable future if not indefinitely.
2. 9/11 gave all U.S. elites the shock of their lives and it was undoubtedly agreed in the days and weeks after that there could no longer be ANY tolerance for individuals or states that presented anything approaching resistance to U.S. hegemony.
For the two reasons above the end game war, the final world war we are witnessing is completely outwith the normal reasonably sane, reasonably pragmatic and disaster-avoiding parameters of the usual geopolitical approach. For the elites of the West, this is an all or nothing war that they feel they simply cannot lose and if they do they will not only lose ALL the leverage they are used to and with which they tell themselves they are vital to preserving the democratic and liberal values of the world they will also lose any hope of achieving the 100% security they determined to achieve via regime change post 9/11.
This is a war to determine nothing less than the future worldwide governance of the entire planet. The West will make a de facto prison planet of it if they win. The East will create the conditions for a world with an unending tolerance for all forms of governance within a geopolitical paradigm with trade, mutually beneficial agreements and a determination to maximise communication and understanding as its highest priorities.
It appears that if there is some way to screw things up and move in precisely the wrong direction with the wrong policies, statements and geopolitical chess moves then the USA will endeavour to hit those targets each and every time.
The edifice of American foreign policy is clearly constructed as a matrix of wonks all with a vested interest in the USA being the world’s number one superpower and global cop, stuck in some moment when this was true and utterly unable to move up to the present moment when most of what they believe is a sham, a ridiculous mirage and will never approach being a reality ever again. Most if not all of these people will continue to benefit from their sky-high salaries by never mentioning the fact of America’s descent to its present fast-degrading position hoping the illusion of world dominance and their attendant salaries can remain right up to the last moment as the whole fragile house of cards explodes inwards on itself in utter ignominy.
There are few things more dangerous than a mortally wounded animal. The closer the western empire comes to its demise the more dangerous it is likely to be and the more violent could be its lashing out at what it sees as its mortal enemies.
Recent historical and political events give Russia the leverage it requires to create distance between a Europe which MUST be pragmatic in the circumstances and an ideological America that ultimately doesn’t give a shit if Europe suffers or not as long as it stays their puppet. Trump dislodged a little of elite opinion in Europe regarding slavish devotion to U.S. foreign and economic policy, the much more potent question of Europe’s energy needs will surely weaken the US-Europe connection much further.
With China also making inroads to Europe (no pun intended) with BRI the past close relationship of the U.S. dog and its European tail should be even more separated. Soon we may find the U.S. recognising that it can no longer thrash around the world commanding obedience as before and this will be no bad thing. Russia and China will gladly take up the slack with their no-war policy of tolerance for every type of governance and simply get on with the business of increasing trade and bettering the lives of all concerned.
Just as the window for the West to safeguard Taiwan as a nation within its orbit is closing so too is that for Ukraine to take back the two breakaway republics. Up until recent times both China and Russia were vulnerable to the various weakening tactics of the West such as sanctions and tariffs for their supposed crimes. These times are fast ending. Both Russia and China have been hit as hard as they could be by the western elites and are not only still standing they are stronger than ever. In addition, they have found new ways to rise even further making new partners, creating new devices to strengthen their defence and following policies such as the buying of gold to ensure the West has far fewer means to hurt them.
Time is therefore running out for the West in general and for the regime in Ukraine to effect the difficult changes they wish to see enacted with relative impunity. If they think that China and Russia still care about being targeted by them and potentially hurt by them if they act in defence of Taiwan and the Donetsk and Lugansk Republics they are taking an immense gamble to strike now. However, they know well that the tasks they so desperately want to see completed cannot but become more difficult every day that goes by. The onus is therefore on them to grasp the nettle now in the hope that China and Russia will quail and remain largely inactive in fear of the reaction of those who wish them harm globally.
Will China and Russia respond with force if force is used against their vital interests despite any remaining economic and reputational blowback against them? Taking everything into consideration, I suspect they will. Though in the meantime they will grow increasingly closer to each other, sharing information and technologies in the sure knowledge that continual attacks of various kinds including propaganda will be seen against them by the West and that the prospect of a military attack is becoming ever more likely.