by Pepe Escobar, widely distributed on the Internet and posted with the author’s permission
Sit back, relax and enjoy a race to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The only question is who will get there first: the EU, NATO, or both.
One may be excused to imagine all sorts of amusement games unrolling at the HQ of the Russian General Staff as The Empire and NATO go literally bonkers. What crazy stunt will they come up with next – short of WWIII?
Here is a delightful put down of NATO’s dementia praecox. Everything so far has failed, from “crippling sanctions” to all sorts of wunderwaffen, while the whole Global South marvels at the exploits of Wagner PMC – now configured as the planet’s top urban fighting machine.
CIA mouthpiece Washington Post duly released how Washington, once again, had the Liver Sausage Chancellor Scholz for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The idea was floated by Secretary of State Tony Blinken: let’s announce we will deliver M1 Abrams to Ukraine in a hazy, unspecified future, thus providing cover for Scholz to release the Leopards now.
Don’t you just love German sovereignty in action?
Every military analyst with an IQ over room temperature knows all those Leopards will be duly incinerated – or better yet, captured, and dissected by Russian military specialists.
So what happens next is yet another vector of the – very successful so far – U.S.-unleashed German de-industrualization racket: the Americans will invade the German industrial military complex with their “much improved” Abrams – which may perhaps arrive in 2024, when only a rump Ukraine may still exist, or never arrive at all. So no need for the Abrams to prove themselves in actual combat – as in being captured and/or incinerated.
Rumors in Washington advance that the U.S. “strategy” in Ukraine – extensively detailed by endless think tank reports – had to be adapted. It’s not about “defeating Russia” anymore, but providing Kiev with the means to “scare” Russia. The Russian General Staff must be trembling in their boots.
Meanwhile, in real life, nearly every possible scenario gamed in Washington and Brussels finishes with NATO like a giant, armoured version of Wile E. Coyote plunging to the depths of the Grand Canyon. And that happens even if the much ballyhooded “Big Arrow” Russian offensive starts in a few days or weeks, or never starts at all.
Arguably the Russian General Staff has concluded a long time ago there’s no point in reducing Ukraine to rubble in a matter of hours – something they could easily accomplish. Thus the fabled mincing machine approach – offering no excuses for NATO to “escalate” (which they continue to do anyway, as Jens “War is Peace” Stoltenberg is so fond of parroting).
The trick is that NATO’s escalation overdrive, as it happens, is somewhat controlled by the Russian General Staff, which is always calculating which optimal maneuvers will consume NATO’s military hardware faster. Call it a Russian version of the popular axiom “frog in a boiling pot doesn’t realize it’s being cooked until it croaks.”
Absolute desperation is now graphically extrapolating into attacks on Iran. Both Russia and China have Iran as their key ally in West Asia for the whole, complex process of Eurasia integration; strategic partnerships interlink the trio.
So attacking the Ministry of Defense in Isfahan with drones – total fail – and bombing an IRGC convoy of humanitarian aid crossing from Iraq to Syria is a serious U.S.-Israel-coordinated provocation.
Essentially these are also attacks against Russia and China. Israel cannot lift its hand or foot without U.S. permission. Iranian intel may be able to establish how the Straussian neo-con and neoliberal-con cabal in charge of U.S. foreign policy authorized if not ordered these attacks, which of course are directly connected to NATO’s desperation in Ukraine.
When in doubt, just come back to Zbig “Grand Chessboard” Brzezinski: “Potentially, the most dangerous scenario would be a grand coalition of China, Russia and perhaps, Iran, an ‘anti-hegemonic’ coalition united not by ideology but by contemporary grievances. It would be reminiscent in scale and scope of the challenge once posed by the Sino-Soviet bloc.”
And mirroring Ukraine/Russia there’s of course Taiwan/China.
As Credit Suisse strategist Zoltan Pozsar has extensively explained, if Taiwan manufactures chips for U.S. missiles Washington then sends to Taiwan for its “self-defense”, but Taiwan needs to wait because the missiles are needed in Ukraine instead, or chips can’t be shipped to the U.S. owing to a possible sea and air blockade imposed by China, the Americans will be operationally ill-equipped to support their two-front war against peer competitors Russia and China.
Bye bye Pax Americana. It’s the fear, actually paranoia, of a destroyed Taiwan – and the destruction in every scenario would be provoked by the Americans themselves – that has led the Straussian neo-con and neoliberal-con cabal to demand their chips be Made in USA.
On the energy front, since U.S. energy costs are low, Washington gambled that much of the deindustrialization of Germany would revert to American benefit. Yet since Iranian, Russian and Venezuelan oil prices are lower than the U.S., not much production may be shifting to the Hegemon: it will go to China.
To the bottom of the Grand Canyon!
The January 10 joint declaration between EU-NATO graphically shows how the EU is no more than the P.R. arm of NATO.
This NATO-EU joint mission consists in using all economic, political and military means to make sure the “jungle” always behaves according to the “rules-based international order” and accepts to be plundered ad infinitum by the “blooming garden”.
So in the end what’s left of “Europe”, when it’s NATO – actually Washington – that really rules?
“Europe”, according to relentless propaganda, means defending “our values” – as in peace, democracy and prosperity. The trick is that unelected elites forced the implicit identification of this imagined, practically sacred “Europe” with the European Union. And that’s how the EU has acquired a mythical identity.
Of course, in real life the EU – as in the real, politically organized “Europe” – has performed as a toxic instrument of division among European peoples.
Instead of peace, it has invested in all-out rabid war against Russia. The EU is arguably the most democratically irresponsible institution on the planet: spend a day in Brussels and you understand everything. And instead of prosperity, the EU has institutionalized austerity.
So sit back, relax and enjoy a race to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The only question is who will get there first: the EU, NATO, or both.
How big does a hole have to be for a Leopard tank to fall into it?
Does one still get a prize if one leaves it for the Russians to haul it out?
Since Russian business men are offering big money for each abrams tank that is destroyed, look for ukrops trying to cash in on this. Russians won’t have to lift a finger, or a Geran. The tanks will be destroyed by their new owners.
If the Ukrainian tank crews want to surrender their tank to claim the prize, they’d better make that clear to their would-be captors in advance, otherwise the would-be captors would have a competing claim. Best option probably to offer to share the prize.
As Hemingway said, Things go bad slowly at first, then all at once.
When referring to Zone A, we should adopt the moniker NATOeu in order of relevance.
Maybe preceded by USA in bold.
“Israel cannot lift its hand or foot without U.S. permission.”
You may have that relationship backwards.
You are absolutely Right.
The animosity between Israel and Iran had been quiet of late.. It didn’t take the return of Netanyahoo long to resume where he left off; making problems and creating hatred for Israel..
The US hegemony is finished. The Jewish Straussians are a bunch of idiots who didn’t learn from why the USSR voluntarily disintegrated itself (actually re-organizing itself). For real, the US will collapse like the USSR but permanently.
I am worried that the future Muslims, engraved with a grievance from Israel’s crimes against Palestine, will wage a total genocide against secular Jews and Zionists across the world. Holocaust 2.0 but on a global scale. Muslims are clearly going to dominate over Christianity in the larger scheme of things since the morality of Christians has declined greatly since the Protestantism movements. Aside from secular Jews getting exterminated,I will see Christians will likely get assimilated into Muslims.
The future is dire for the West! It is karmic!
Hard to disagree that Christianity in the West is a dying religion.
As I understood it, per the english version of the holy Koran, all good true believing Christians, and other true believers and honest followers of the holy books are all recognized as “Muslims.”
It is only the evildoers that are to be whacked.
@ Robert Shule on February 01, 2023 · at 8:13 pm EST/EDT
“As I understood it,…”
A word of caution, from a Muslim.
Not recommended to enter into an argument on religion with a “FullThrottleCommunist.”
You’ll be going nowhere.
Besides, you’re off topic.
Subject matter is NATO/EU/Collective West.
Things will be changing in Europe. Faster than we think.
The US is sending 16 Abrams, around $13 million a pop. First though they’re going to descale them of the super-duper secret body armour before sending them into the pound for pound most dangerous missile battles ever waged. Like taking away an infantryman’s bullet-proof vest, and making ZERO sense.
Still, if sense is what mattered here, very few if any of these politicians would be in office.
A question never asked is how and when Zelensky is going to pay for all of the weapons, IMF “loans”, World Bank loans, EU “loans”, etc..
The “collective West” is far from being a charity organization, so how do they expect to collect their debts from a world-class grifter?
Using Black Rock to wipe up Ukrainian farmland at pittance value or FOC as in Bill Gates buying up American farmland, so WEF can begin their manufactued world food shortage and famine project to kill all the useless eaters.
When ? Never. Ukraine is bankrupt, and on Western life support. They’ve allready lost 80% of their most valuable land, and nearly half their population.
Debt doesn’t matter, unless your forced to pay it back. As long as you got a bigger gun than your creditor, your good.
It was the bankers that tried to reel in Germanys inflation last century, but this century its among the bankers who are to blame, so without a bigger banker to neutrilize the problem, its inflate your way out of trouble or die.
And no bankers wants to die over the high cost of living.
Heard elsewhere that the super duper secret body armour is either wholly or partly comprised of Depleted Uranium DU plates. If this is indeed true, then removing them before deployment to 404 might not be a bad idea.
When a $5k drone meets a $13 million sitting duck, there’s only one winner, plates or not.
Obrigado, Pepe, as always.
“…So sit back, relax and enjoy a race to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The only question is who will get there first: the EU, NATO, or both.”
Predictability: Does the Flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in Brazil Set Off a Tornado in
Tsargrad.TV published an article titled
“STOP ERDOGAN”: IS TURKEY BURYING NATO?”
in which they use Edward Lorenz predictability effect to explore NATO’s current conundrum, vis a vis Sweden/Finland access to NATO gettting blocked by Turkey.
The “butterfly wings” that caused “the tornado in Texas” was the burning of the Quran by a Danish right-wing nitwit looking for his 15 minutes of fame.
The article dovetails perfectly with Pepe’s, reason I will post it in full.
“STOP ERDOGAN”: IS TURKEY BURYING NATO?
Who could have foreseen the consequences! The public burning of the Koran in Stockholm turned into a discussion about the collapse of NATO. The detonator of the process is Turkey, where the question of creating a new defensive unit on the ruins of the Alliance is already hanging in the air.
Former White House National Security Adviser John Bolton is known to have a reputation as a hawk and is viewed with hostility in many parts of the world. If only because he is publicly proud of his participation in organizing coups d’etat in other countries. According to the Turkish portal Haber7, now Turkey also felt that it strongly “does not digest” Bolton. Haber7 drew attention to the fact that the Swedish newspaper Expressen highlights Bolton’s statement that “Turkey should be excluded from NATO”in arshinny letters.
Naturally, the Swedish audience, offended by Turkey’s decision to block Sweden’s entry into NATO for publicly burning the Koran, could not ignore such a flattering opinion of the American politician. In addition, Bolton wrote the same thing earlier in an article for The Wall Street Journal. A former adviser to the US president suggested that by helping the opposition in Turkey, the West can stop President Erdogan.
If the West takes a bold step to help the opposition in Turkey have a chance of success in the upcoming presidential election, then there will be a chance to stop Erdogan.,
Bolton thinks. He also added that ” if Erdogan is not prevented, the situation will worsen.”
Category “Letters from readers”
And it turned out something that can usually be observed in the modern international information field. Bolton’s article in The Wall Street Journal found its response in the Swedish Expressen, by the way, a very “yellow” newspaper, greedy for any information carrion. And the Swedish protrusion of Bolton’s idea of excluding Turkey from the North Atlantic Alliance, in turn, caused an extremely negative reaction from the Turkish portal Haber7 and its readers.
And now the main thing is that this reaction clearly shows that the issue of Turkey’s withdrawal from NATO is not idle chatter. We can draw an unambiguous conclusion: Turkish society is literally saturated with the desire to withdraw Turkey from the Alliance.
This is what Haber7 readers write in response to Bolton’s statements and the spiteful tone of the Swedish press:
The terrorist State of America and its imperialist aspirations are endless. A terrorist State that poses a threat to humanity and world peace. The best option for America is to leave this world…
The United States is a terrorist country. It creates terrorist groups, distributes weapons and ammunition. It is waging a war with different countries with the hand of terror.
“He (Bolton) is bursting with ambition, the bastard. Turks are wolves. We are depressed and hungry. And the leash is not for our necks.”
On the contrary, let’s throw America out of NATO, because NATO was created to protect America, traitors…
You put it very well, Bolton. It is time to create a new defense organization led by Turkey. Because Turkey has no benefit from NATO…
I think we need to withdraw from NATO. We will form a new pact or join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Enough of NATO’s treachery.”
We would be grateful if you would do us a favor and, for example, withdraw us from NATO.
Both the US and NATO are over. The new list of countries in the world does not include the United States. The new order does not provide for the United States, and therefore they want to start a world war and get their remaining share. To counter this, other states must unite in a union, otherwise they will disappear and never get back on their feet.
Will NATO disappear?
Let’s agree that the statements are bright and very remarkable. The United States and NATO should not exist, Turkey should withdraw from NATO, Ankara should create its own bloc or join another anti-American bloc-this is the common denominator of Turkish opinions.
Naturally, the opinion of the public cannot but be taken into account by the country’s leadership, no matter what country it is. As for Turkey, the question of public sentiment is very sensitive for President Erdogan, given that the country will hold general elections on June 18, which will elect the country’s president (for the next five years) and members of parliament. And it cannot be said that Erdogan is one hundred percent sure of his victory. That is why Bolton says that the West should help the Turkish opposition overthrow Erdogan, who personally poses a problem for the United States and all of NATO.
But one way or another, given the absolutely clear anti-American mood of Turkish society, we will certainly hear talk about Turkey’s stay in NATO, at least the rhetoric about the country’s likely withdrawal from the Alliance in the election campaign of Erdogan and his Justice and Development Party. Today, Washington needs Turkey’s membership in NATO more than Ankara. Erdogan is well aware of this.
And that is why he cleverly and effectively manipulates the “rules” of NATO on the entry of new members, saying, for example, that Turkey can agree to join Finland, and then “Sweden will be shocked”. At the same time, it is well known that Finland firmly adheres to the position of not joining the organization without Sweden. What a conundrum it will be in NATO if Turkey does just that! Where will Finland go and what will the Alliance say about the separation of the “sweet couple”? What will Sweden do?
There was no better gift for Erdogan to enhance Turkey’s role in international politics than the burning of the Koran in Stockholm. Now the Turkish politician is playing with NATO like a cat with a strangled mouse. In fact, the geopolitical situation, as well as the actions of Erdogan himself, bring the situation to the point where the issue of Turkey’s withdrawal from NATO will not be the subject of threats and blackmail against Turkish “allies” in the alliance, but a real need for Ankara.
And then the question will arise not just about the “brain death” of NATO, but about the death of the North Atlantic Alliance itself. And this is already greatly changing the nature of the war in Ukraine, and the entire global situation. And it all started, we recall, with the burning of the Koran in the center of Stockholm.
This is reminiscent of the “butterfly effect”, which entered the world lexicon with the light hand of the famous American mathematician and meteorologist Edward Lorenz, or rather, from his 1972 work “Predictability: Can the flapping of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil cause a tornado in Texas?” (Predictability: Can the flapping of a butterfly’s wings in Texas?). Brazil cause a tornado in Texas?).
The complex systems that Lorenz wrote about, which undoubtedly include international politics and relations between countries, contain a lot of variables and therefore cannot be predicted. No one could have imagined that the burning of the Koran in the Swedish capital by the almost half-witted Danish nationalist Rasmus Paludan could lead to such a turn in international politics: NATO is on the edge of a precipice.
So, there you have it.
Burning the Quran unleashes forces in the realm of the unseen whose effects are felt on this realm, sooner or later.
The Finnish are accusing Russia of being behind the Quran burning, only they don’t have a thread of evidence.
The paranoid Finnish have unleashed a witch hunt on all-things Russia, seeing machiavellian plots and confabulations in every corner, and their latest concoction is that Russia threw a wedge in theirs and Sweden accession to NATO.
What they and the stupid Swedish should be more paranoid about, they made 2 billion enemies and counting, the world over, with one single act, just on this realm.
Their retribution is already in motion.
Excellent commentary. Turkish love affair with EU is coming to an abrupt end. Turkey is an Asian country with majority Moslem. It may have a small piece of territory in Europe but mainly Asian and Eurasian. For Ankara the future is with the Eurasian Union, BRICS and SCO.They know it.
Those happy-go-f*ck-yourself Scandinavian minnows should see Turkiye’s stance on their NATO aspirations as a blessing.
The US would not want to lose Turkiye for FIN-SWED. Which other routes could they use to get WMD’s to their Militias in the region?
The «Butterfly Effect» itself is an utter nonsense — there’s no, and there cannot be, in a system with complex dynamics, a way to determine if a butterfly can provoke e phenomena, or if a phenomena was provoked by a butterfly.
As for the burning of Quran, as one of the root causes of what is going on, it is extremely reductive. The history would have gone the same way regardless of that burning, for the simple fact that the all the rest – such as wars, victims – had much greater impact on the dynamics than stupid burning of symbols. Those in charge think in terms of essence rather than in terms of hysteria. Or, said in other words, there are times when such happenings are served (if served at all) as understatements, and there are times when they are served as overstatements.
The time has come for a Not America Trade Organisation. I’ve been a party to it for decades, simply by boycotting the Great Satan. Europe would have to be extremely stupid to buy oil and gas from the US after Nordstream.
I place my bet on the EU hitting the bottom first. The ‘European’ identity is an artificial construct, that will resolve when the milk and honey stops flowing. The National parlament will be of greater importance than the EU one.
Nato land is under imperial occupation, and the only one strong enough to ever leave was France. Surviving multiple assasination attempts. Not going to happen with Macron.
I can only see it happen if Empire disintegrate, as loss of Natoland in itself represents Empire disintegration/contraction.
I have also seen it reported that big Rouble purses are on offer for a captured Abrams or Leopard, with a slightly lighter Purse for evidence proving destruction of the same, but not even a Kopeck being offered for a Challenger. Sounds like “scrap value” only. The UK MOD should have concerns that some folk don’t appear to be taking their weapons seriously.
Here’s a suggested improved title for today’s piece from Pepe:
Trials and Tribulations of the Collective West: When does NATO go full “Thelma and Louise” ?