Russian President Vladimir Putin’s comparison of increasing US-led NATO aggression towards Russia to the attack by Nazi Germany on the Soviet Union is advisedly apt.
Putin was addressing the Russian State Duma this week on the occasion 75 years ago when the Nazi Third Reich launched Operation Barbarossa on June 22, 1941.
Nazi Germany’s aggression, which led to the Great Patriotic War in which up to 30 million Soviet citizens lost their lives in order to gain victory against that fascist power, was at bottom an attack by Western imperialism. As Putin reminded, this fundamental fact is often omitted in Western commentary.
In that way, the significance of NATO’s current military buildup – what else is that but aggression? – on Russian territory is all too often absent in Western media. And, by extension, Western public appreciation is lacking on how sinister the unfolding situation is.
Russia’s history over centuries is replete with examples of where Western imperialist powers have tried – and failed – to subjugate Russia with military attack from its Western flank.
It is consistent with historical precedent that Putin should describe “increasing aggression” by the American-led NATO military alliance in the same context as the repugnant Nazi assault on Russia.
The burgeoning US-led aggression towards Russia – in the form of provocative political campaigns to demonize and vilify with false accusations, economic sanctions and the spurning of diplomacy and dialogue, as well as the expansion of military forces, including the deployment of missile systems – is in a long, reprehensible tradition of Western belligerence towards Russia, going back to, among others, French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte and German Fuhrer Adolf Hitler.
This congenital aggression towards Russia stems from the dynamic of the Western economic system of capitalism, which in turns begets imperialism as its necessary tool for expropriating natural resources and subjugating foreign nations.
Russia is not the only target of Western aggression, of course. But the largest nation by land mass on Earth is and always has been a prime target.
The little-known historical record – at least in Western media – is that Nazi Germany was fomented by American and British capitalism as a proxy with which to vanquish the Soviet Union. The subsequent Western alliance with Soviet Russia to defeat Nazi Germany was merely a cynical damage-control move by the Western powers who were witnessing their Nazi attack dog being muzzled and liquidated.
How could anyone who has a sound understanding of history – as opposed to the anesthetizing non-history common in the West – be not perplexed by the current US-led military menace on Russia’s Western flank?
It should be a matter of deep concern that even Germany’s foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier last weekdenounced the largest-ever NATO war exercises being conducted in Poland as “warmongering”.
What underscores the alarm is that Washington and certain NATO allies are pushing this confrontational agenda without the slightest discussion in Western media or among the Western public. As President Putin pointed out, people in the West are oblivious to the dangers of potential global war because the Western media is committing a huge disservice by not informing accurately on developments.
There are any number of flash-points where NATO’s military could combust into all-out war with Russia. The Baltic region, Eastern Europe, Ukraine, the Southern Caucus region, or the Black Sea where US warships continue to penetrate in violation of international treaties. Certainly, historical precedent strongly suggests this geographical swathe.
As the US presidential election swings towards Democrat contender Hillary Clinton, that portends ominously for relations with Russia. It was Clinton who as Secretary of State in the first Obama administration in 2009-2013 plunged bilateral relations into the freezer and who set the course for the present geopolitical tensions.
Of further concern is Clinton’s likely
It is hotly tipped that Clinton will appoint Michele Flournoy as the first female Secretary of Defense. Flournoy (56) is a prominent Pentagon insider, with close links to the military and CIA. We can be sure that this duo will keenly push a bellicose agenda towards Russia.
Only last week, Flournoy made strident calls for increased US military intervention in Syria. She wants to deploy large numbers of American troops and openly use military force to topple the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad.
Under Obama, regime change has been a covert enterprise through proxies such as Saudi Arabia, Turkey and a menagerie of terrorist militia. Under Clinton, the signs are that regime change in Syria will be made an overt military objective.
Flournoy is calling for the use of cruise missiles to hit Assad targets, including those of allied Russian forces in Syria.
“If you bomb the folks we support, we will retaliate using standoff means to destroy [Russian] proxy forces, or, in this case, Syrian assets,” she told the military publication Defense One.
Flournoy said the US should jettison the pretense of fighting terror groups, and instead direct its efforts to remove Assad from power in Syria.
In blatant contravention of international law and UN resolutions on Syria, the probable next White House administration is declaring war on Syria. Such a move is an unabashed aggression towards Russian strategic interests and calculated explicitly with military strikes on Russian forces in Syria. In short, a wider war with Russia.
Whether the Middle East proves to be the flash-point of American aggression towards Russia remains to be seen over the coming months. But one thing seems irrefutably clear by now. Washington is already on the path of war.
An American war on Russia is looming. Maybe the people of the US and Europe can stop that outcome by threatening political ad social revolt, on the streets if necessary since the electoral process seems to be stacked against the democratic will.
On the solemn anniversary of Nazi Germany’s ill-fated invasion of the Soviet Union 75 years ago, it is astounding that such horror seems largely forgotten in the West. The criminal, reckless aggression by US-led NATO forces towards Russia is a sign of the dangerous ignorance and apathy in the West.
Russia is once again facing a recurring historical pattern of Western aggression. President Putin is correct in his contextualization of NATO’s actions and attitude alongside the historic Nazi war on Soviet Russia. Only those who have been brainwashed by banal Western disinformation would consider such a warning as “alarmist”.
The beast that is Western capitalist imperialism is salivating for war again. The positions of war are aligning, and certainly Syria is among the most volatile, especially if Hillary Clinton takes over as Commander-in-Chief.
Russia will stand strong, as Putin firmly stated in his address to the State Duma.
But this time around any war would involve a global arsenal of nuclear weapons that has no precedent. This really would be war to end all wars – and the planet too, as we know it.
In the name of peace and humanity, the onus is on the Western public to bring the warmongering system to an end – once and for all – by slaying the beast that is capitalism and its monstrous twin imperialism.
Finian Cunningham has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. He is a Master’s graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in newspaper journalism. He is also a musician and songwriter. For nearly 20 years, he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organisations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent.