Thanks again to the fantastic work of the Russian Team I can share with you the English translation of an article I find most important at a time when so many commentators and analysts are completely misreading the situation in Novorussia. This article (translated by Marina and proofread/edited by Alex, John and Michael – thanks guys!) addresses some of the most prevalent arguments used by what I would call the “Dugin camp” to, yet again, stir up a panic when there is no reason for it (but then, Dugin has been having panic attacks as soon as he realized that Putin would not send the military into the Donbass). Frankly, while I never liked Dugin very much, I now am beginning to find him outright dangerous and I am delighted to be able to share with you a sober-minded analysis of what took place in Minsk. This analysis has been written by Yuri Baranchik, candidate of philosophy, director the Information-Analytical Internet Portal “Imperia” and former director of the State Scientific Research Institute of the Academy of Theory and Practice of Government of the President of Belarus. He is a regular contributor to the website Vzgliad where I found this article (original Russian text here).
PS: there is one good thing about Dugin’s latest panic campaign: it puts to rest the theory mantrically put forth by the western MSM about Dugin being “Putin’s ideologue” or “Putin’s ideological advisor” and any other such nonsense. This was never true (unlike Dugin, Putin never was a Bolshevik), but at least now this is obviously and undeniably untrue.
Novorussia – Surrender or victory?
by Yuri Baranchik
So, what happened in Minsk? Surrender or victory? This is the kind of argument that not only the average citizen of our immense territory is currently having, but unfortunately, also a significant part of the expert community. There is no simple answer to this question without considering what had happened a week earlier in Brussels at the EU summit and at the NATO summit on the 4th and 5th of September in Newport, Wales.
Russia won a political victory in Brussels: the EU (Germany and the countries of the Old Europe) refused to impose new sanctions against Russia under pressure from the United States and its most loyal vassal states (Britain, Poland, the Baltic States and Ukraine). Thus, the EU chose not to escalate the conflict with Russia on the eve of winter. Furthermore, the EU itself has advised a way out of the situation on the South Stream and remove it from the sanctions of the Third Energy Package: to apply the same rules that apply to offshore projects of the EU; for example in Bulgaria, to allow Gazprom to buy them and connect them to the “South Stream”.
Despite the many hints and threats from the USA’s poodles on the eve of the summit of NATO member countries (as we have discussed in detail in the article “The fate of Novorossia: the US raising the stakes”: a) a threat of deployment of a European missile defense system against Russia; b) establishing five new NATO bases in Poland, Romania and the Baltic States; c) breaching the terms of the Founding Act “Russia – NATO”), the summit only concluded with an official statement, which reflects the opinion of the North Atlantic Alliance on the current events on the territory of the disintegrating Ukraine.
As expected, NATO condemned the Russian military invasion of the Ukraine; urged Russia to withdraw its military from Ukraine; to cease its assistance to the militias and intervening in the situation in Ukraine under any pretext. There was no discussion of anything else – not about the violation of the terms of the Founding “Russia – NATO” Act, the deployment of the European missile defense, or of NATO bases in the five above-mentioned countries. According to Rasmussen, he took into consideration (it can’t be said any better) the desire of the Poles, Balts and Romanians to place NATO “transit points” on their territories.
What does this tell us? The EU, despite all of the threats and cries of the U.S. and their accommodating “tough-talking” poodles, is not ready to go beyond the current level of confrontation with Russia. Germany, the countries of not only the Old Europe (Greece, Italy) but also the New Europe (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary) have opposed the escalating level of anti-Russian rhetoric, the development of new sanctions, and especially, the inclusion of mechanisms and instruments of pressure by NATO.
Furthermore, the recent summits in Brussels and Newport showed that Europe wants to end the current tense relationship with Russia as quickly as possible and return to the previous level of cooperation, despite, let me stress, the current events in Ukraine. In fact, Europe agrees with the return to Russia of her historical territories (Crimea and those regions of Ukraine which had been given to her by the Bolsheviks) in exchange for an uninterrupted supply of gas and the continuation of mutually beneficial trade and economic cooperation.
The reason for this is that Europe is not happy with the new format of Ukraine’s statehood, which was established there after the February revolution. Therefore, this dangerous regime, which entails instability, has to end. In the way it was hinted at the talks in Minsk on the eve of winter.
Therefore, the achievement of the ceasefire agreement between the junta and the representatives of Novorossia in Minsk is a major victory for Russia, because it didn’t allow the United States to sever relations between Russia and Europe and gave Europe the necessary arguments for the rejection and blocking both in Brussels and in Newport, of the decisions that the US was prepared to launch against Russia. It is a big joint victory for Russia and the EU today.
Now let’s go back to the long-suffering Novorossiya. Many, even such distinguished experts as Boris Rozhin, consider what has happened as a sell-out of Novorossia. Let’s look at this in more detail.
First, apparently, Poroshenko and the junta are not going to abide by the terms of the truce – the shelling of Donetsk, Lugansk, and Gorlovka and the fighting in the district of Mariupol by the junta’s troops continue. Therefore, the hands of the resistance forces are no longer tied.
Secondly, if attacks by the junta’s troops were to stop and the peaceful and boring process of negotiations were to resume, where would those residents of Ukraine, who are now under the authority of a neo-banderite fascist junta, shift most of their attention to? That’s right; it’d switch to the internal problems: the price of food, gasoline, inflation; unemployment; the hryvna’s weakening exchange rate; gangsterism, and etc. etc. Poroshenko will be pretending that he is making decisions because he needs to win the parliamentary elections.
What will Kolomoisky, Lyashko, the battalions of the National Guard and all those others who are interested in kindling the fires of war, do? What are they supposed to do? There is nothing for them to do in such circumstances; therefore, tensions within the junta will increase. Even if Russia and Germany are able to continue to keep Poroshenko from the use of force in the East, sooner or later the abscess inside the junta will burst.
About the “new Transnistria”. This is what the experts scare the population and neophytes with as a proof of the American party and the government’s slogan that “Putin sold out”. The fact is that the phenomenon of Transnistria has only become so because of one factor – the absence of a common border with Russia. Nothing else. Abkhazia and South Ossetia have a common border with Russia which is another matter. Yes, technically they are all unrecognized states. But in reality, I emphasize, in reality Abkhazia and South Ossetia, unlike Transnistria, are under the protection of the Russian army, and no-one in his right mind would dare stick his nose in there..
Therefore, the scenario of a “new Transnistria” in relation to the DPR and LPR is out of the question – the common border with Russia rules out such a scenario. Yes, these regions will have an uncertain status for some time. However, after the bursting of the abscess in Kiev or another scenario the two regions of Novorossia will be joined by the other five that were handed over to Ukraine by the Bolsheviks. And that will be the end of Ukraine in its present form.
In conclusion, about the main question: why did Russia choose this course and not speed up events in Novorossia? The first reason has already been mentioned: it was necessary to give Germany and Europe the arguments required not to allow the US to implement their prepared-in-advance positions at the summits in Brussels and Newport.
Secondly, it is necessary to provide Europe with a calm winter and not to let those Eastern European countries that depend on gas supplies through Ukraine, to freeze. Because, if chaos begins on the territory of the Ruin and the gas pipelines begin to be blown up, Eastern Europe will freeze, and the US will then have very strong arguments with which to put pressure on the EU in regards to Russia’s position in the Ukrainian crisis.
Therefore, the question of uninterrupted gas supplies to Europe in the winter is one of the most important ones. This alone is a reason for the ceasefire, not to mention the welfare of the peaceful inhabitants of Novorossia.
Besides, a cold and hungry winter will bring to their senses those in Ukraine who are now controlled by the junta. The junta will be pushed out after the winter anyway.
Thirdly, the rapid capture of all seven regions of Novorossia would give the US a pretext to build a new iron curtain. Not somewhere in Germany, but right on the border with Russia and in the form of the notorious NATO bases in the Baltic States, Poland, and Romania. At the same time, we would permanently lose the rest of Ukraine, which is unacceptable. That is, any immediate division of Ukraine gives us a victory: so much was captured and so quickly. However, from a strategic and long-term perspective, such a scenario would in the end be our defeat, because we would lose the rest of Ukraine and in addition, would allow the US to take full and complete control over Europe.
That’s why we need all of Ukraine, which, similar to Belarus, will be friendly to Russia and join (with the possible exception of the three Western regions) the Eurasian Economic Union. Together we will then form a trade zone with the EU that will unite the entire Eurasian continent from France and Holland to China, Iran and India in a single trade and economic zone.