On Sept. 12, former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was a guest on King World News to talk about the state of the U.S. economy, and geo-political events that are occurring between America, Russia, and Europe in regards to the ongoing Ukrainian civil war.
During his 17 minute interview, Dr. Roberts addressed the financial war that being waged between the two superpowers that is threatening to tear apart Europe and bring most of the world into an all out global conflict.
And after a week where the world saw the Eurozone backtrack on their plans to sanction Russian oil companies opposite to U.S. demands, Dr. Roberts stated outright that Europe has no choice but to reject increased pressures on Russia’s primary energy industry because they know that if Putin were to shut off oil and natural gas to Europe in retaliation for further sanctions, then the entire Ukrainian crisis would end in an instant as Europe would capitulate to Russia and completely alienate the U.S.
In fact, Russia’s retaliation towards Poland yesterday marked a sharp increase in Russian policy that has not included oil and natural gas before despite America’s attempts to isolate Russia and their wealthy oligarchs.
And it was this move of shutting off portions of the overall gas flow to an EU country that appeared to spook Europe into not only refraining from sanctioning Russian energy companies, but also led them to back down from a planned trade agreement with Ukraine that was destined to assist the Eurasian country in jointing the European Union in the future.
Paul Craig Roberts: It was very interesting to see what Putin’s response was (in regards to Europe’s debate to sanction Russian oil companies) as he said that it is not that the situation in the Ukraine is of any interest to the Americans but that it is a tool that Washington is using to undermine international relations.
So you see this is another step… a dangerous step towards provoking war. And the question is, will these types of sanctions, which as far as I can tell haven’t had any real effect on Russia, continue and create a situation where war becomes likely?
What would be the appropriate Russian response to stop this since they don’t want a war? If the Russians were to retaliate in a very strong manner it would stop Europe’s participation of the sanctions Washington is imposing on Russia. Notice that the sanctions from Europe and the U.S. are on the Russian oil companies, and not the gas companies, and Europe wouldn’t put any restrictions on the gas companies because they are totally dependent on them. So if Russia said fine, if you don’t want to deal with our oil companies then you don’t need to deal with our gas companies.
If that takes place, Europe would collapse. Without Russian gas they can’t survive the winter, their industries can’t run and that would be the end of it… that would be the end of the troubles in the Ukraine. – King World News
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is one of the foremost experts on Russia, and in particular, Russian economic policy. During the Cold War his book on the failures of central planning and how it could bring down the Soviet Union is considered one of the most important pieces of research made into government policy from that time, and was even recognized positively by the U.S.S.R.’s Economic Institute at their Academy of Sciences.
The primary purpose of the economic proxy war with Russia via Ukraine is completely about protecting the dollar and keeping the world from moving towards an alternative currency for trade, energy sales, and confidence.
However, Dr. Roberts points out that the sanctions being imposed upon Russia by the U.S. and Europe are actually forcing both Russia and China to accelerate their plans towards the creation of a new financial system, as seen this week when a new agreement for an alternative SWIFT system was begun to replace the need for dollar hegemony in nearly all spheres of global trade.
Why Russia has allowed the conflict in Ukraine to continue on as long as it has without military intervention in Eastern Ukraine, or through increased pressures on Europe through the shutting down completely of all flows of oil and natural gas remains a political mystery only Vladimir Putin can answer.
However, this threat is being seen by Europe as not only viable, but inevitable if they continue down the path of standing lock-step with America in this economic proxy war. And as Dr. Paul Craig Roberts asserts, the reactions by Europe over the past few weeks in regards to their own publicized sanctions proves that their weaknesses and reliance upon Russian energy would in fact end the Ukrainian conflict in an instant should Putin choose to use this option, especially as winter is about to set in.
Kenneth Schortgen Jr, Finance Examiner