Saturday, 29 October 2022 — The van says…
Is it a lame duck, sitting duck or just a dead duck in the water? A tsunami of consequences now affects Brussels and many of its minions as the tide of events slowly sinks it.
Recent weeks and months have seen world leaders in a frenzy, all attempting to outdo each other as they take their stances against Russia and any nation that supports it. There have however been considerable differences of opinion between world capitals, a myriad of decisions being made regarding the multitude of measures that have been proposed. This article will look at both the projects proposed and the results they have yielded.
Ducks in a Row
With the current conflict being years in the making, leaders from such diverse entities as NATO, the US, EU, UK and the UN have been given plenty of time to both write their scripts and rehearse them long before Moscow launched its Special Military Operation in the Ukraine. A key facet which united them all was that not only that the organizations, but also their members had to be on the same page when the time came to act. For the US, UN, and UK, this was fairly straightforward. A loaded media knew what to say and was ready to wholeheartedly support their governments’ agenda all the way. Europe was a very different proposition however.
Ducks out of a Row
As everyone knows, Europe is a patchwork of nations, a plethora of peoples making the Old Continent what it is. The EU may think that it has governed over it for decades, yet the current economic and political situation has been the first stress test for Brussels, old alliances and a distrust of transatlantic politics meaning that certain nations have been far less welcoming to pan-European plans than others.
Cuckoo in the Nest
In spite of Europe being composed of states that nominally come under a great deal of control from the EU, Brussels is also very much under the influence of Washington. With that, not only is the US consulted on important decisions, it also ensures that EU policy favors American interests. Having had both a huge diplomatic and military presence across the continent since the end of the Second World War, Washington is able to leverage and pressure with relative impunity. Be it hacking Merkel’s phone or hacking the former Yugoslavia to pieces, Uncle Sam doing as he pleases does not appear to displease many of Europe’s leaders.
The crisis in Eastern Europe is not the only worry facing both countries and pan-continental organizations alike. With the aftermath of the pandemic still causing supply issues, a very dry summer across Europe and the US bringing havoc to agriculture and transport as well as a recession now beginning to manifest itself, a whole range of other issues are present which do not augur well for the next few years.
Out of the Nest
Not everyone in Europe is part of either the EU or NATO, Serbia being something akin to an island, it being surrounded by other nations that take orders from afar. Notwithstanding Belgrade’s somewhat different stance compared to most other European nations, Brussels is still attempting to pressure a non-member state into acting against Moscow. Hungary has also irked Von der Leyen and her club by refusing to support Kiev with arms, Budapest now being threatened in a number of ways by its alleged brothers across Europe.
As European nations flock to help America’s useful idiot in Kiev, the oddest bird of all is Moldova. Just as with Serbia, it is neither a member of NATO or the EU (although it is since June an official candidate state), yet bangs the western drum harder than most. Just as with other small nations bordering Russia, it riles Moscow whilst attempting to align itself with transatlantic rhetoric at every opportunity. Whilst the country broke away from Romania after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the state of Transnistria in turn broke away from Chișinău’s control, this territory being very pro-Moscow with Russian peacekeepers being posted there. Wave after wave of protests have rocked the country of late, yet as precarious as the country’s government is, it continues to aggravate a very tense situation.
So what of all this? Where does this leave Europe and the collective West?
The first weapons which the western establishment used were sanctions which today are like water off a Russian duck’s back whilst slowly sinking those who wielded them. Those effects are to date causing divisions between the EU member states and also between Europe and an America that wants the capitals of the Old Continent to do its bidding. As the effects of the measures already taken are beginning to be felt, not only will real schisms appears between the nations, but also between governments and the public who are suffering the consequences of their rulers’ bravado.
Will Feathers Fly?
How the EU will deal with the internal strife that the blowback of the last few years remains to be seen, yet with Paris and Berlin at loggerheads, the Hungarians standing fast in the face of criticism, and the public facing soaring energy costs, it is obvious that there are tensions that will neither be alleviated nor solved by Brussels sticking its oar in. Moreover, with there being a gulf of difference between political positions, the public pocket and potential pain further down the road, demonstrations and civil unrest will become more common as time passes by. Quite how the people, their governments and in turn their European masters intend to tackle these issues remains to be seen, yet the apparent harmony and tranquility of life in the EU may soon come to an abrupt end.
A whole range of events are presently occurring, yet only one is being blamed for the malaise which blights the West more by the day. A looming recession as well as the lingering effects of the pandemic still burden economies. Black Swan events such those we are seeing today are unfortunate and infrequent events, yet with the West attempting to fly over the cuckoo’s nest at the same time as all this is happening, a very difficult period in our history is being made a whole lot worse.
For decades, power has slipped from the people into the hands of a select few, yet with those few having overplayed their hand and lost grip on the consequences, the time may be coming when people take things into their own hands; the cohesion between the public, national, international and supranational bodies may suddenly break, the millions of people who support their country no longer supporting those who govern them.
The last year has seen immense changes both in the East and the West, yet with the changes that the West has attempted to force upon the East, it will be the West that will have to change if it is not to become a sitting duck to the consequences of its own malfeasance…