What do Ukrainian neo-fascists, nationalist ultra-Catholic Polish parties, Baltic linguistic nationalists, Georgian kleptocrats, Albanian terrorists, Serbian liberals and the neo-Ottoman regime in Turkey all have in common?
The answer is that each has been embraced and used by the United States in order to portray false unity in a geo-political movement against Russia.
Each of the political/nationalist factions I’ve listed have been paid visits by John McCain, the poster-boy of a US led anti-Russian coalition, one whose ideological or intellectual unity revolves entirely around whipping up hatred for the Russian state and in many cases also the Russian language, Russian culture and Russian Orthodox Church.
Some of the groups mentioned have few if any practical disputes with Russia, others yet have latent historical tensions with Russia that are exacerbated by US backed local politicians.
Let’s go through each of these examples:
Ukraine is an artificial state created by Lenin as the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, a constituent republic in the Soviet Union. The borders which expanded to include territories of the Second Polish Republic after 1945 include regions that were historically Russian (east and south-east), Polish, Austrian and then Polish again (north west) as well as regions which were historically Hungarian, Romanian and more recently Czech (south west).
Rather than allowing regions which have very little in common apart from historical hatreds to peacefully part ways and in doing so correct an error of Soviet political geography, the US has been desirous to keep the state impossibly united.
Far from being well intentioned, the US wants an artificially united Ukraine to present itself as an anti-Russian bulwark in the borderland between Russia and the EU. This has been allowed to happen in spite of the neo-fascist ideology for the current, putsch government being almost exclusively representative of views originating from the former Austrian/Polish regions of modern Ukraine.
Modern Poland shares a small border with the Russian region of Kaliningrad. Poland is an EU and NATO member and Russia has zero ambitions or practical desires to alter that.
Nevertheless, in 2014, the US encouraged Polish politicians from the then ruling Civic Platform party, to help foment regime change in Kiev. Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski was present in Kiev during the signing of an agreement between President Viktor Yanukovych and opposition parties and famously said that if parties didn’t support the agreement they’d all be dead.
As it turns out, the flames of death fanned by the Polish Foreign Minister whose husband is the well-known American Russophobe Anne Applebaum, were in fact spread by the leaders of the opposition who the following day, forced Yanukovych out of power. He fled the country shortly thereafter.
The fact that today, many Poles find themselves at odds with a neo-fascist Ukrainian government that celebrates the massacre of Poles in the 1940s should not surprise anyone.
America played on historically tense Polish-Russian relations and the result is that anti-Polish Ukrainian nationalists are now in charge of a country that shares a larger border with Poland than Russia.
3 & 4. Estonia and Latvia
In spite of a sizeable native Russian minority. The Russian language is denied any official status in both Baltic countries. Even more worrying, local officials in majority Russian towns are being openly persecuted for speaking Russian.
Almost nothing is said about this in the liberal mainstream media.
Furthermore, Latvia and Estonia hold annual parades honouring men who fought in Hitler’s SS during the 1940s. With western European politicians rushing to call almost any allegedly right-of-centre politician a ‘Nazi’, they continue to ignore the glorification of Nazism in the Baltic states.
The west ignores these flagrant acts of race-hatred because it doesn’t fit the narrative of countries being ‘oppressed’ by a Russia which wants nothing to do with them.
Disgraced former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili is best remembered as a man who tried to ethnically cleanse the Russian population of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. This led to a Russian intervention which saved the populations of South OSsetia and Abkhazia, much to the disappointment of the west who called Russia’s 5 day humanitarian intervention an act of aggression.
The rest of Georgia got increasingly tired of Saakashvili’s antics and he eventually fled the country in the light of numerous accusations of fraud.
He was later given Ukrainian Citizenship and made the Kiev regime’s puppet governor of the historic Russian region of Odessa between May 2015 and November 2016. His short term in office ended in disgrace.
It is unclear which anti-Russian regime may give him a position next.
In spite of this, many in the US are still hoping to bring Georgia into NATO.
Days after Montenegro’s NATO membership was approved by Donald Trump, John McCain flew to Serbia to meet with Serbian President-elect Aleksandar Vucic. McCain is trying his best to pull Vucic towards NATO and the EU, a move which is contrary to the desires of many Serbs who feel little historical affinity to the Berlin dominated bloc but instead favour historically close relations with Russia.
America has been trying to break Serbia’s good relations with Russia through a combination of wooing liberal Serbian politicians whilst simultaneously calling for the partition of Serbian territory, the Serbian province of Kosovo in particular.
If wooing Serbian liberals is America’s carrot, Albanian terrorism is the stick. For much of the 1990s, the ethnic Albanian terrorist group KLA was named as such by the United States. In 1998 however, the US State Department worked to rehabilitate the image of the KLA from terrorists to freedom fighters.
In 1999 NATO illegally attacked the Yugoslav Republics of Serbia and Montenegro and continues to help radicalised Albanians to occupy the Serbian province of Kosovo.
Not stopping there, a London drafted document called the Tirana Platform calls for the creation of a ‘Greater Albania’ which would see the current Albanian state expand into the territory of Serbia, Montenegro and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. This has delighted ultra-nationalist Albanian politicians who increasingly make up the majority of Albania’s ruling elite.
In other words, if Serbia can’t be bought, Serbia must be chipped away and radical Albanians are the preferred method by which to do this.
Although, Albania has had few meaningful relations of anon kind with Russia since the 1960s. Albania is seen as a state which is ready and willing to help America weaken both actual and supposed Russian allies in the Balkans.
Turkey is the most prominent and powerful nation on a list. Long before the United States was a country, the Ottoman and Russian empires fought territorial wars for centuries.
Although Barack Obama was said not to have good personal relations with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey became increasingly useful in America’s attempt to form an anti-Syrian and by extrapolation anti-Russian and anti-Iranian coalition in Syria.
Now that Donald Trump has decided to attack Syria, Erdogan, like John McCain is calling for more and pledging support.
Because of the Turish economy’s dependence on Russia and because Russia and Turkey share a common Eurasian region, Russia would ultimately be a far better partner for Turkey than the distant US. This is true in spite of centuries of hatred prior to the 1920s when Lenin and the founder of the modern Turkish Republic Kemal Ataturk developed good relations.
But so long as the US appears to back Erdogan’s ambitions in Turkey, Erdogan will try as much as he can to have it both ways and call himself a ‘friend’ of Russia while actively undermining Russian interests in Syria. Russia has expressed anger about this to Erdogan and there are signs Erdogan may be climbing down.
Each country mentioned above has internal issues that are not directly or even indirectly related to Russia. Nevertheless, the US has latched onto these problems in order to paint these very different places as part of an anti-Russian bloc to be reckoned with.
This is an approach which aims at exploiting local and regional issues into a wider Cold War 2.0. Thus far, Russia has not taken the bait. Russia prefers to take each issue on a case-by-case basis rather than pretend that there is a monolith of Russian opposition when in fact, such dots are only connected in the mind of the US.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.