Sunday, 5 February 2023 — CovertAction Magazine
By Chay Bowes
Why negotiate a diplomatic settlement and adhere to the Minsk agreement when there is so much money in war?
During a recent interview with German magazine Der Spiegel, former Chancellor and European political heavyweight Angela Merkel revealed that the Minsk accords, a comprehensive 2015 diplomatic treaty, agreed by the EU, United States, Russia, and Kyiv to end the civil war in eastern Ukraine, was essentially subverted by the Ukrainians in an attempt to buy time to expand its military capabilities.
The fact that the accords, which were widely regarded as a truly workable solution to the conflict, were not prioritized by the U.S. for implementation, speaks volumes when assessing the sincerity of the U.S. position. Just prior to Merkel’s stunning revelations, Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was also covertly recorded admitting that the process was abused by Ukraine and used to prepare for war with Russia.
Angela Merkel and Petro Poroshenko in Kyiv in November 2018. [Source: thepeninsulaqatar.com]
Given the high level of interface between NATO and Ukraine during this period, it is difficult to imagine that this manipulation of the peace process was not carried out with the full knowledge, and probable assistance, of NATO and the U.S. It is now abundantly clear, at least to all objective observers, that the U.S. never seriously intended to prevent the current conflict in Ukraine. On the contrary, any cursory assessment of their past and contemporary covert and overt involvement in the region suggests they have been working to destabilize Russia via Ukraine for decades.
Facts such as their encouragement, and material assistance, in the building of a huge 250,000-man, NATO-trained and equipped army facing Russia’s border, illustrate the reality of what the U.S. project in Ukraine was about, regardless of their diplomatic pronouncements.
Despite decades of Russian warnings on NATO expansion, and despite the sincere attempts of some European countries, NATO and its U.S. kingpins forged ahead along a path to what would become an inevitable war. Considering this, can any of the numerous U.S./NATO statements suggesting they “exhausted all diplomatic efforts” to prevent this conflict be taken seriously? The facts suggest not.
As the second phase of the conflict in Ukraine grinds toward its first bloody anniversary, the first being the post-Maidan civil war which erupted in 2014, the grim realities of this conflict, both economic and human, are now indelibly burned into the global consciousness not only of the Ukrainian and Russian populations, but also the pro-war political aristocracy in the U.S. and their client EU/NATO allies.
In recent weeks, whispers of peace have emerged, uncharacteristically, from the eternally hawkish, “absolute victory” brigade in Washington. It is undeniable that these war hawks wield a disproportionate influence on Zelensky’s government, with many dissenting analysts suggesting it is they who essentially operate the levers of power in his Kyiv palace.
Before accepting this dubious kite flying for peace as genuine, observers would be advised to research the long, determined and cynical march into this inevitable conflict, a clash long predicted by scholars like Mearsheimer and Chomsky, who have persistently highlighted the central role that the United States and its proxies in the EU had in willfully manufacturing its inevitability. Conflicts between great powers tend not to occur overnight, and with this being such a high-stakes game, where the very balance of global power is potentially shifting, nothing happens unless it is supposed to happen. Essentially, when it comes to the conflict in Ukraine, the power bloc that emerges victorious will potentially dominate a new global order; in other words “this game is for all the marbles.”
This conflict has evolved into one unlike any other, the weaponization of social media, of culture, and the revision of history itself, have become second fronts, central to the anti-Russian, pro-Atlanticist narrative at the center of the EU/NATO pro-war rationale. It is critical that the Western public, who have been bombarded 24/7 by a propaganda Leviathan of previously unseen proportions and resources, explore the factual realities of how the “scaffold” that this conflict now burns on was deliberately built, not over a matter of months or years but over a matter of decades.
Of course, having any opinion other than the prescribed Western view is portrayed as dangerous and subversive. Any view, other than the stock mainstream narrative, which alleges that a maniacal imperialist Russia, wishing to regain tracts of previously conquered territory, is cast as Russian propaganda. This authoritarian and dangerous. corporate position has led to people such as your author being labeled as pro-Putin advocates, and paid propagandists for an authoritarian, genocidal and hateful state.
Of course, the opposite is quite true. Your author and many others like me are essentially anti-war advocates, who earnestly seek to challenge the profit-fueled neo-liberal hegemony that has led Europe, blindly, to the brink of a third world war.
The reality that I, and many others have long held these anti-imperialist views, is discarded along with all objectivity, independence and balance. It is now undeniable that the pan-Atlanticist perpetual war cult has gone “all in” on Ukraine. Turning a blind eye to Nazism, gross corruption and human rights abuses, while gleefully depriving American and European populations of their right to dissent, their right to disagree and their right to challenge the rationale for this terrible conflict.
The reality that is consistently hidden is that the only winner, if there is one, is the military industrial complex which is profiting grotesquely from the human misery that abounds in the ditches and trenches of Ukraine today.
It is incumbent on the United States to question the veracity and sincerity of U.S. diplomacy, given that any initial hopes of a negotiated peace in the east, which had erupted into a brutal civil war in 2014, were dashed by the persistent failures of U.S. ally Petro Poroshenko’s government to act on central parts of the Minsk deal, most notably the federalization of Donbas within Ukraine and the preservation of rights for millions of ethnic Russians in the east of Ukraine who had rejected the pro-EU Maidan coup.
Today, an increasingly fractious NATO/EU Washington-led alliance seems determined to compound its continuing foreign policy failures by deeming Russia a “Terrorist State.” It seems that the irony—that recently released U.S. data confirm that America has killed more than 900,000 people in dozens of countries in the past 20 years alone—is seemingly lost on the U.S. State Department.
This escalatory move demonstrates that any semblance of the grudging but mutual respect between U.S. and Russian diplomats during the Cold War is now sadly a romantic memory. It is worth recalling that these official and unofficial diplomatic channels not only steered the U.S. away from nuclear Armageddon, but they also fostered, and indeed encouraged, pragmatism on both sides, with the idea that a deal could be done and had to be done thankfully prevailing. Today, however, diplomatic relations between Russia and the United States are at their lowest point since their establishment in 1933, and that is bad news for almost everyone.
When examining the background to today’s conflict, it is important to interrogate the abject failure of Western diplomacy, firstly to de-escalate the 2014 post-coup civil conflict in eastern Ukraine, and more recently to defuse the standoff which culminated with the Russian military intervention in February. How could such a potentially catastrophic conflict between an increasingly boxed-in Russia and a hawkish NATO/Ukraine have come to this? Surely the many voices of geopolitical realism and restraint were being heard?
If not, maybe the persistent and increasingly resolute warnings of “red lines being crossed” by a concerned Moscow? No? Well then, shouldn’t the U.S./NATO at least have respected the democratic wishes of 73% of the Ukrainian people? After all, they voted Zelensky into power on his promise to “end the war”? It seems none of these crucial realities registered with the ever expanding “freedom machine” that is NATO, most interestingly the mandate of the Ukrainian people for peace in the east was conveniently ignored.
When Moscow deployed its troops to the Ukrainian border in the closing months of 2021, it was seen by many (including your author) as elaborate sabre-rattling to demonstrate the seriousness with which the Russians viewed the situation; of course, it turned out to be quite the opposite.
As the Russian Army crossed the Ukrainian border in the early hours of February 24th, not only did it spell the end of decades of Russian warnings about NATO’s eastward expansion onto its borders, it may also have marked the end of a global world order dominated by the U.S. and its dollar. When objectively evaluating the global impact of this crisis and the potential spoils to the victor, it becomes increasingly likely that the widely publicized last-minute attempts for peace were mere PR outings, box-ticking for future deniability.
When did the U.S. “project” in Ukraine begin?
When Western narrators insert the now seemingly obligatory phrase “unprovoked invasion of Ukraine” when writing on the crisis, it would be useful to point out that it is undeniable, but not widely known, that the United States has been agitating to wrestle Ukraine away from the influence of Russia since the end of World War II.
Despite the complex demographic and geopolitical realities of the region, and in spite of the deep and ancient social, linguistic, and historical ties between Russia and Ukraine, Uncle Sam has had his eye on Kyiv for a very long time. As far back as 1949 the relatively young Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic was a priority target for initially the OSS and then the newly formed CIA, which aimed to exploit the complex ethnic and historic differences in the region to undermine the Soviets.
The long-term U.S. strategy involved overt and covert actions to influence and fund various Ukrainian nationalist and paramilitary organizations. As with innumerable other CIA-led regime-change operations, the morality or political persuasion of their partners mattered not, and they included the openly Nazi collaborators of the ultranationalist OUN and UPA led by recognized mass murderers like Stepan Bandera, a man now widely and openly deified in Zelensky’s Ukraine by recently instituted national holidays and countless statues.
Ukrainian nationalist holds banner of pro-Nazi Stepan Bandera, a hero in Zelensky’s Ukraine. [Source: profil.at]
An examination of the recent activities of CIA cut-outs such as the “National Endowment for Democracy,” “Freedom House,” the “National Democratic Institute,” the “International Republican Institute” and the “Eurasia Foundation” confirms the deep-seated persistence of U.S. intelligence-backed subversion in Ukraine. These organizations like to describe their “mission” as “assisting the building of Ukrainian civil society” but, in reality, their multimillion-dollar task is part of a broader U.S. strategy to remove “unfriendly” governments as per the CIA regime-change playbook.
The successful U.S.-sponsored coup d’état against the legitimately elected government of Viktor Yanukovych in 2014 was the culmination of those decades of efforts to install and propagate a pro-Western, anti-Russian, pro-EU government in Kyiv, much as it had worked to do in many post-Soviet republics like Belarus. It was now glaringly apparent that, rather than respecting the very democracy that it selectively supports, the U.S. has preferred an “à la carte” approach to the democracy and freedom it purports to represent: If it is pro-U.S.A., defend it; if it is not, destroy it.
“Maidan” an unmissable opportunity
The depth of U.S. interference in Ukraine’s internal affairs has been truly astounding. It has also been intentionally overlooked by mainstream media and their client analysts when evaluating the apparent failure of diplomatic attempts to avert today’s conflict in Ukraine.
Instead of accepting the democratic mandate of the imperfect Yanukovych government, the U.S. and its EU allies openly supported the Maidan coup. The U.S. and its European allies even went so far as to brazenly suggest that, if Yanukovych performed an “about face” and accepted the agreement to move closer to the EU economically, he might be permitted to remain in power.
Anti-Yanukovych protests that culminated in February 2014 coup—and led to the current conflict. [Source: pinterest.com]
Inevitably, the usual suspects began to queue up to support the nascent “Euromaidan” movement. When the perennially hawkish and boorish Republican Senator John McCain arrived in Kyiv to “show his support” he proceeded to openly wine and dine unsavory key players in the Euromaidan movement. McCain’s newly found friends included the known racist and ultra-fascist Oleg Tyagnibok, leader of the far-right Svoboda party.
McCain even thought it would be a good idea to stand brazenly with Tyagnibok on a stage in Maidan Square, proclaiming to thousands of protesters that “the free world is with you, America is with you, I am with you.”
Senator John McCain waves to pro-European protesters during a mass rally at Independence Square in Kyiv in December 2013. Oleg Tyagnibok is seen behind his left shoulder. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) is on his right. [Source: nbcnews.com]
Incredibly, the United States senator made this speech while the democratically elected government of Yanukovych and the millions of Ukrainians who had legitimately given him their votes looked on in dismay. In the Donbas, millions of ethnic Russians looked on fearfully as the U.S. lit a touch-paper that would ultimately end in a brutal civil war.
If McCain’s theatrical “freedom-loving war-hero” routine was seen as brazen by the Kremlin, along admittedly by some less hawkish EU observers, it was a model of diplomatic restraint compared to the conduct of Victoria Nuland, the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs and high priestess of American neo-liberal hegemonic foreign policy.
As Ukraine’s political crisis deepened, Nuland and her subordinates became increasingly aggressive in favoring the anti-Yanukovych demonstrators. Nuland proclaimed in a speech to the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation in December 2013 that she had gone to Ukraine three times in the period following the start of the Maidan demonstrations. On December 5, she handed out cookies to those assembled and doubled down on her support for their cause.
Victoria Nuland handing out cookies in Maidan Square. [Source: rt.com]
The granular level of the Obama administration’s interference in Ukraine’s internal affairs was indeed incredible. This was confirmed in a crucial phone call intercept by Russia’s FSB security service that was then widely distributed to foreign news services. During the call Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoff Pyatt discuss, in great detail, their preferred leadership choices in a post-Yanukovych administration. The U.S. plumped for Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who indeed became prime minister once the democratically elected Yanukovych was chased from office.
U.S.-installed puppet Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who had the support of only a tiny fraction of Ukraine’s population. [Source: abc.net.au]
During the astounding call, Nuland says enthusiastically that “Yats is the guy” who would do the best job. The current Mayor of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko is also featured in the bizarre discussion but is bounced out of the running by Nuland.
Another interesting element of Nuland’s conspiratorial call with Pyatt is her suggestion that Vice President Joe Biden should be dispatched to Kyiv to “get it over the line.” This again illustrates the high-level knowledge, and support within the Obama administration, for this potentially illegal agitation against a democratically elected and sovereign government.
It is critical to point out that Nuland and Pyatt, two senior American government officials, were engaged in such detailed planning to overthrow a legitimate government at a time when Yanukovych was still Ukraine’s lawfully elected president. This is irrefutable evidence, if evidence were required, that the country that persistently lectures the global village on the sacrosanct nature of sovereignty and democracy, was yet again riding roughshod over both. Use of the term “diplomacy” is almost embarrassingly inappropriate to describe the covert, regime-change scheming of Pyatt and Nuland.
It is also important to remember that all of the above took place with the full support and knowledge of those at the highest levels of the U.S. government and the White House, including then-Vice President Joe Biden, now of course President, funder and admirer-in-chief of Volodymyr Zelensky.
America’s behavior not only constitutes interference, but it also constitutes the micromanagement of an anti-democratic coup d’état, regardless of your political opinions about the obviously flawed government of Viktor Yanukovych. That fact is inescapable.
Given the widely documented manipulations and infiltrations of 2014, all sanctioned at the highest levels of the American state, those with any doubt as to the current influence of the U.S. government on the Zelensky regime in Ukraine today should seriously reconsider their view. While a very generous observer might suggest that, despite the level of interference outlined above, the U.S. was at least ostensibly, on the outside pulling the strings during Maidan, today it is undeniably on the inside, steering the Ukrainian ship both militarily and economically. While the conflict may have begun with NATO supporting Ukraine, today the sad reality is that it is Ukraine supporting NATO in a proxy war against its nuclear-armed neighbor.
It is worth considering whether the “diplomacy” which the United States declared to be one of its central pillars of influence for peace in Ukraine prior to the current crisis is the same brand of “diplomacy” it was engaged in prior to the Maidan coup? No objective analysis of this period could, with any seriousness, absolve the United States of a central role in destabilizing and overthrowing the legitimate government of a sovereign state and a democracy to boot.
Can the narrative widely peddled by Western power brokers—that it was Russia and not the West that stymied diplomatic efforts to avert war in 2022—be taken as sincere? Given the Machiavellian machinations of the U.S. security state prior to, during and after the Maidan coup, it is a very hard ask to believe they were sincere during the 11th hour negotiations to avert this conflict. The dismal reality of this terrible and seemingly inevitable conflict in Ukraine is that it has not dulled the appetite of hawkish perpetual-war advocates in the U.S., and to a lesser extent in Europe.
Ursula von der Leyen, the archetypal bureaucrat and queen of Europe’s woke Eurostocracy, has emerged to epitomize the total victory cult that evangelizes an “absolute truth” regarding Russia. Von der Leyen routinely peddles a factually flimsy and theatrical narrative about an alleged Russian desire to conquer Europe, enslave its peoples and vaporize those who refuse to bend their knees.
Ursula von der Leyen—an arch-Russophobe and hawk’s hawk. [Source: georgiatoday.ge]
Von der Leyen has become a caricature of reverse Euro-racism, turning a blind eye to gross Russophobia, violence and the revision of European history, particularly regarding the reality of the incalculable Soviet sacrifice in the struggle to defeat Nazism. There is also a renewed attempt to diminish the central role Russia has played in the global economic and cultural ecosystem. The EU, and particularly its smaller member states, have enthusiastically made a bonfire of our rights to dissent from their narrative on Russia, banning TV channels, sanctioning journalists and growing increasingly authoritarian in pursuit of their failing econo-cultural war on Russia.
I would suggest that all who value balanced debate, freedom of speech and their right to disagree consider who built the scaffold upon which this war is now blazing? What military-industrial complex stands to benefit from its perpetuation? And how could any diplomatic process that ran alongside the creation of a de facto NATO army in Ukraine be taken as sincere?
Regardless of the above, the potential for catastrophic escalation remains dangerously high, but then again, so do the profits of major American defense contractors and energy companies. Given the dystopian reality we find ourselves in, where truth is an “à la carte” commodity, and mainstream assigned narratives becoming akin to pseudo religious obligations, a battlefield resolution to this conflict sadly seems more and more likely.
In this burgeoning war of attrition, all objective observers and those interested in non-aligned analysis of how this conflict will end should be asking themselves this single, simple question: Which side can in reality afford to lose this conflict in Ukraine, America or Russia? The answer, while obviously eluding ill-advised EU and State Department hawks, is, in my humble view, abundantly clear.
About the Author
Chay Bowes is a campaigner, for independent journalism, entrepreneur and writer from Ireland.
Chay is interested in geopolitics and history and has a masters degree in strategic studies.
Chay can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
One thought on “Ukraine—The Inevitable War”