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Europe’s Accidental Autocrat and Her Two Accidental Missions
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The European Union is not a state or a federation of states, it is something not seen before, but is assumed to grow state-like characteristics like a center of political accountability. It does not have a head of state or head of government. But political entities of any kind will at some point, when under pressure, cry out for leadership. Europe’s crises are demanding this, and have thrown up an autocrat.

Angela Merkel is an accidental autocrat. She was not chosen to be leader of Europe through any democratic method. She was not appointed or anointed. She could hardly be a more unlikely leader of the continent, having received her political education in the sheltered system of the DDR, far removed from plans and beginnings of Europe’s unification. She does not give the impression of having wanted the position, and if she relishes it she does not let on. She has demonstrated great political savvy, with tactical skills first honed when she was leader of a youth devision of East Germany’s “Propaganda und Agitation”. Her acumen has lifted her to an apparently invulnerable position above Germany’s political parties. The big question for all of us interested in the world’s future is whether she is becoming the inspired politician for whom many Europeans have been waiting. Can she rise to the occasion?

Early signs do not prompt a jubilant ‘yes!’. Yes, she did make a late move, eleven months into the Ukraine crisis, to try stop American ‘lethal’ weapon deliveries (with the inevitable ‘advisers’ and in the end well-nigh inevitable tactical nukes) to the Kiev regime. And, yes, she let the Greek Minister of Finance have a tiny slice of a compromise to allow him a Herculean attempt to save his country from total economic ruin. Both moves, though, were the absolute minimum of what the crises required.

The Ukraine and Greek crises have become existential crises for the European Union, caused by what is most wrong with that political entity. There are two great hindrances that keep the Union from fulfilling its unrealized promise. The promise was much commented upon only two decades ago, when Europe presented itself as a paragon of international virtues worthy of emulation. The hindrances – it cannot be restated often enough – are the secular faith of Atlanticism and the neoliberal capture of the Union’s political structure and processes. The two are, almost needless to say, intertwined.

The phrase ‘democratic deficit’ used by officials and commentators until a few years ago showed an awareness among Europe’s political elites that the way things are done in the European Union were not quite in keeping with professed principles held up for the world’s admiration. But this criticism revolved around the lack of enthusiasm for, participation in, or even the slightest curiosity about Europe’s political life rather than that they revealed an understanding of the momentous political metamorphosis that was changing things from under the feet of citizens of Europe’s member states without them noticing.

That change is neatly summed up by the imagery of the transformation of citizens, as far as ruling elites are concerned, into consumers – a transformation more vividly imagined by American critics of late capitalism than their counterparts in Europe, for whom the process was faster and came with less warning.

No electorate in the European Union voted for a replacement of unions, political parties, churches and other once representative institutions between themselves and their governments by a pack of ever more powerful corporate bodies dictating terms to the Union’s ruling elite. They did not vote for austerity policies masquerading as responsible finance. They did not bring a Brussels lobby of insurers to power, which demanded fundamental overhauls of good working national healthcare systems, limiting physicians in what they could and should perscribe and advise. They did not vote for an elevation of North European banks to become dominant arbiters of policy, and when these were facing technical bankruptcy through their gambling, they did not endorse the compensation of bank losses incurred through predatory lending by means of, again, predatory policies causing large-scale social suffering and ruin in the peripheral member states, Greece foremost among them.

Traditional safeguards against the arrogation of power by non-representative but politically significant entities to a point where they eliminate the relevance of citizens do not now function in Europe. Angela Merkel demonstrated her political loyalties when, after the credit crisis of 2008, she pointed her fingers at the Greeks and other peripheral populations who reportedly evaded their taxes and did not work hard enough, effectively changing the subject from the question of who instigated the crisis. After that, and up until today, she could hardly inform her electorate that German tax money and IMF financial ‘aid’ was bouncing straight back from Athens to replenish the coffers of Germany’s own banks, along with those of France and The Netherlands.

Since that time I have wondered whether Chancellor Merkel could perceive what was going on, and whether her tack to blame the Greeks was a momentary expedient, the repercussions of which were beyond her abilities to fathom. With respect to the other big hindrance to European fulfillment, does Chancellor Merkel begin to fathom just how momentous the changes in Washington at the hands of neocon radicals and ‘liberal hawks’ have been? She has appeared, at least until recently, to share with her counterparts in Northern Europe a blindness to how Europe’s erstwhile geopolitical protector, which for all its CIA machinations did help maintain a relatively stable post-World War II international system, has become a tragic case of political malfunctioning and deadly hubris. Does she perceive that the ‘Alliance’ part of Atlanticism has become theory without substance?

There is no alliance in the generally accepted interpretation of the word. Alliances exist for purposes of shared goals. After the demise of the common enemy, the transatlantic alliance collapsed because of a slide into militarism, and fundamentally altered priorities of its dominant member. Command replaced consultation. Times are long gone when any kind of public conversation between Europeans and Americans about harmful American action has a chance to resonate in American corridors of power. Through continued support for NATO Europe’s member states help encourage Washington’s delusions of unattainable total global control, which will not benefit them in any way, but of which they are likely to become dupes.

A major article in Der Spiegel, Germany’s weekly with a reputation for seriousness to lose, celebrates a new Merkel. One who has taken the initiative to try stop the fighting in the Ukraine, and “contrary to her preferred modus operandi, has embarked on a mission with an uncertain outcome”. Along with a detailed description of the Minsk negotiations, the magazine speaks of a major change of style. After a history of being critical of Merkel for “dithering in the face of tough decisions” it admires her now for “making moves she would have avoided in the past”, and concludes that she has switched from foreign policy ‘idealism’ (principles) to realpolitik. In this and other Spiegel articles, as well as most articles on the subject all over Europe, the elephant in the room is studiously overlooked. But the Der Spiegel editors do acknowledge who is boss, as they comment on Obama that “he is a president who gives Merkel room, and a chance, to make her own foreign policy, a European foreign policy,” almost as if, under their breath, they thank him for his generosity on this occasion.

With respect to the looming threat of a proxy war in the Ukraine the leading question is whether the peace party that Merkel has formed with Francois Hollande can outlive any further Washington meddling aimed at preventing a de facto partition of the Ukraine. In feverishly nationalist neocon eyes what is at stake with propping up the Kiev regime, and helping it defeat the separatists, can only loom bigger than before they meddled in the Ukraine. By initiating the crisis and with their containment moves on the Asian side, they themselves have driven the two former communist giants of the Eurasian continent into each other’s arms. There are now new Russian-Chinese trade and mutual assistance commitments, and their joint efforts to establish an alternative to the dollar for global trade and aid purposes have intensified. The new ‘silk road’ projects that will connect China’s coastal cities with European ports by high-speed trains, and which promise to make the heaviest trade traffic in human history possible, can only appear as an ultimate threat to ‘Full Spectrum Dominance’ ambitions. It would be a miracle if the second Minsk ceasefire agreement also ended the recent history of NATO provocations, together with Washington’s sabotaging of Europe-Russian commercial relations. Barack Obama has never shown the kind of presidential control and resolve that made Harry Truman fire General Douglas McArthur.

We may be witnessing a restoration of significant French-German cooperation, which evidently began over a lengthy dinner at the end of January in Strasbourg. Almost surely relevant as well was that Merkel and Hollande went to the Kremlin without their usual entourage, evidently to minimize the possibility of American eavesdropping. It would seem that the French, more than the Germans have begun to see that the Atlanticism fervently on display in 2014, and unreservedly preached by Europe’s mainstream media, has created a funnel to political suffocation and perhaps fullscale war. For the peace party to succeed in the long term, and for European-Russian relations to be repaired and go towards where they were before waves of Putin vilification poisoned Europe’s public discussion, Merkel will have to paper over her earlier shared general European assumptions of Putin as the aggressor in the Ukraine and her earlier bad misunderstanding of the crisis.

Peace party heroism now masks Merkel’s factual defeat by having to take seriously what Putin had been suggesting all along with his repeated diplomatic proposals ever since the putsch in Kiev last year. Is she now also ready to accept the defeat of her story about lazy Greeks properly punished by an austerity program? The number of Europeans who still believe that original story has dwindled significantly. In spite of continued scornful and belittling mainstream misreporting in Northern Europe’s mainstream media about the attempts by Yanis Varoufakis to break through the rigidity of Europe’s financial apparatchiks, sympathy has grown for the new Greek government trying to save their nation.

The last time we had anything remotely resembling what the ‘troika’ of European Commission, ECB, and IMF was doing to Greece, was in the days of ‘bleeding’ as medical remedy for various illnesses. That flourished in ancient Greece and medieval Europe when surgeons believed that illnesses were caused by an imbalance of body ‘humors’. It was discontinued just before the twentieth century. A hundred years later the comparable method of starving public sectors, making them as skinny as possible has been conquering the world. For centuries a fainting patient was considered proof that the treatment was working, and the weaker ones naturally died. But the difference between bloodletting in the past and the economic austerity of today, is that bloodletting was frequently not fatal, while starving countries’ public sectors leads inexorably to ever deeper economic tragedy.

By now the only people who still stick to the unreason of bleeding, at least publicly, are the top officials of Europe’s finance ministries, with Germany’s Minister of Finance Wolfgang Schäuble in the lead. I think they cannot believe in it, but they must be constantly aware of the interests they in fact represent, which have been prospering from Greece’s bleeding. But, surprise, the IMF, whose record of enthusiastic economic bloodletting in South America and Africa brought its continued existence in danger until the Euro countries asked it to come and help, has turned out to be relatively supportive for the aims of the Syriza government. As we know, the American Treasury controls the IMF. For the moment Washington does not want to have to deal with disintegration of the euro or European Union.

Merkel does not of course want to go down in history as the autocrat who made disintegation happen. A very interesting and telling split in the German top was revealed when in the last phase Germany’s Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel spoke of the Greek final proposal as an acceptable basis for negotiation after Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble, had denied this. The next thing that happened was a phone call from Merkel to Alexis Tsipras, her Greek colleague, that changed the atmosphere.

Did the German chancellor rise to the occasion here, characteristically at a late moment, in a seemingly trivial but factually big way? There are other cases in her political past where her well-known slow-motion decision making speeds up when her physicist-chemist trained mind has collected all available evidence. She also does not seem to mind that a political associate walks into a wall as a result.

Mainstream media reports on the confrontation between Varoufakis and the European authorities have mostly concealed the fact that Schäuble took a step back, as they made it appear that the Greek government was too sure of itself and invited humiliation. Reporters and analysts can be relied upon unwittingly to fall in line with Merkel’s image-making behind which this, in her domestic setting rather ruthless, politician practices what Der Spiegel now calls ‘realpolitik’.

The dogmatic rigidity of the troika serves to give this combination of institutions a semblance of legitimacy, which would be undermined if it ended its austerity demands. Their lording it over the nations that fell victim to the misbehavior of the Northern banks does not rest on democratic legitimacy. Neither has it possessed legitimacy rooted in knowledge and capacity or political wisdom. Europe’s populations have been expected to accept that IMF, ECB, and their ministers of finance have profound understanding of economies and know what in the end is good for all. This is no longer widely believed. The rigidity of the ministers of finance on display in Brussels last month must have been inspired, more specifically, by a newly emerging threat to the power of present incumbents.

If the Syriza government in Athens succeeds in making headway in its promised fight against corruption and tax evasion during the four months extension of a loan agreement it has been given, and if it then manages, gradually and with new negotiations, to extricate itself from austerity doom, Spanish, Portuguese, and perhaps even Irish electorates will have a precedent for a new breed of politicians to invoke. In which case the authorities may begin to see the first outlines of a new spectre to haunt Europe. When Varoufakis kept referring to the fact that what he was doing for Greece, was very much also for Europe as a whole, this man of great intellectual capacity and integrity was not disingeneous.

Having once almost personified the two big things that are wrong with Europe, Atlanticist submission and austerity policies, does the German Chancellor have it in her to lead Europe away from those? She appears to be the only politician who can win from the ECB, IMF, EU Commission, and possibly even Obama. Circumstances are forcing this accidental autocrat to come to terms with the two great political perversions of our age: the subjection of the mass of the world’s human beings to a life ultimately dictated by the very few – the infamous 1% – and an irrepressible warmaking spirit that seeks fulfillment of fantasies of total global control.

Is this accidental autocrat aware of how huge, how monumental a difference she could make?

 
• Category: Economics, Foreign Policy • Tags: Eurozone, Merkel 
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  1. unit472 says:

    I see little evidence of ‘sympathy’ for Greece. To the contrary, as the specter of real losses landing on the taxpayers of Europe should Syriza renege on its deal with the EU is eroding what little sympathy there was for Greece. Toss in the political need for the other program countries to not want Greece to get a ‘better deal’ than they got from the ‘Troika’, the pressure on Greece to stop complaining and get with the program is growing. EU Commission President Juncker, reported to be a Greek ‘dove’, even refused to meet with Varoufakis.

    As to Ukraine, the Kremlin line that this was some sort of coup instigated by the US, EU or both is growing tiresome. Corrupt politicians get chased from office from time to time and whatever the US or EU want it still happens. The president of Egypt and the PM of Thailand were both democratically elected and both undemocratically chased from office last year by massive public demonstrations against their rule.

    As to the putative ‘alliance’ between China and Russia, it would appear to be a de minimis arrangement if it exists at all. China has got its own problems economically and angering its two largest trading partners to assist a reckless thug is not high on its ‘to do’ list. Signing a gas deal that is likely to never happen was more a diplomatic courtesy extended to Putin so he did not return empty handed from his kow tow trip to Beijing than anything else as neither the pipelines, gas production capability or financing was in place and deliveries not even scheduled to begin until 2019 at the earliest.

    The reality is Putin has gotten himself into a quagmire in Eastern Ukraine. He has no way to stop Ukrainian nationalists from inflicting casualties on his forces ( that aren’t officially there) short of reaching a diplomatic settlement acceptable to Ukraine and has promised his people that the Russian economy will turn around in less than two years! Merkel’s patience is wearing thin and the UK, US and Canada are gearing up for even tighter sanctions on Russia if Putin doesn’t keep the ceasefire he negotiated with Merkel. Toss in the revulsion over the assassination of Boris Nemtsov in Red Square and the skepticism over Putin’s denials of the Russian government having anything to do with it and Putin is heading for a confrontation his nation is not strong enough to win.

    • Replies: @Kiza
    , @KA
    , @Anonymous
  2. ZE EUROPEAN UNION UBER ALLES!

    PSEUDO-DEMOCRACY UBER ALLES!

    VE VILL STRIP ZE WHITE MIDDLE CLASS OF WESTERN EUROPEAN OF THEIR ABILITY TO CONTROL THEIR OWN GOVERNMENT!

    HEIL BANKSTERS!

  3. Kiza says:

    What a wonderfully insightful article by professor Van Wolferen. I quote this key sentence:
    “Having once almost personified the two big things that are wrong with Europe, Atlanticist submission and austerity policies, does the German Chancellor have it in her to lead Europe away from those?”

    Will the frau be able to steer EU between Scylla and Charybdis? Will she be able to repay the US Nuland’s “F*** Europe” in kind? Let us buy some popcorn and watch the best political show in the World – the US losing its EU servant and the EU not fracturing. I am sure that Putin would gladly take a peace in Ukraine in return for giving frau the full credit for it.

    Yet, no doubt that the whole Europe would be in total pleasant shock if the frau managed to pry Europe out of the US clutches and into the Euro-Asian Union, which is definitely in Europe’s best interest. She would become one of the biggest heroes of all time.

    Let the Anglo-US neocon rogues continue playing their anachronic dirty global game of denying development to opponent (sanctions) but without EU, which if continued will eventually marginalize the US. Let Europe ride the wave of Asian development together with Russia. The Euro-Asian block promises to turn into one of the biggest win-wins in human history. In the most simplified terms, this is what the deal is:
    1) China brings manufacturing
    2) Russia brings resources
    3) Europe brings technology
    Two billion strong single market, no more Ukraines, peace and prosperity for humanity! Now say no to that and claim that you are a politician with a vision!!!

    • Replies: @solontoCroesus
  4. Kiza says:
    @unit472

    Hey unit472, do you enjoy your one-man propaganda show here on uzn.com? So much wishful thinking against those that you hate: the South Europeans and the Putin’s Russia. Do you go and kick the neighbor’s cat or slam the neighbor’s dog when things do not turn out the way you dream? So much meanness and denial in you, individuals with such heavy mental load eat themselves out from the inside.

    But one thing I give you: “..the UK, US and Canada are gearing up for even tighter sanctions on Russia…” because that is the only thing that will be left of NATO after Ukraine plays out.

    I have to believe that no matter how much EU politicians are US puppets right now, somehow
    1) the antiwar sanity,
    2) the interest in self-preservation under threat of a global nuclear war and
    3) economic self interest
    will prevail and the EU will get out from under the US control. Then only the Anglosphere countries will remain members of that US neocon invention – the “International Community”.

    • Replies: @unit472
  5. bob sykes says:

    At Minsk II, Merkel and her lap dog executed a successful coup that removed the US as the dominant power in Europe. Now Germany is.

    The EU functions as a de facto German colony, and Germany extracts wealth from it just as the Brits, Frogs and Belgians did to their African and Asian heydays. Merkel’s own putsch was necessary to preserve Germany’s colonial control over Europe and to prevent a pan-European war. What Germany needs now is to turn a de facto power into a de jure power. That will require the dismantling of NATO and the expulsion of the US from Europe, which also happen to be the principal goals of Russia. The UK will have to go, too.

    Expect muy fun to come.

  6. unit472 says:
    @Kiza

    Once again I am treated to over the top rhetoric for merely mentioning an alternative ( and perhaps more realistic) assessment of the situation in Europe. I don’t ‘hate’ Southern Europe and I am concerned that the debt burdens of Portugal, Greece and Italy are unsustainable absent economic growth rates better than 1 or 2% per year. As to the antiwar sentiment, its a shame the people of Russia don’t seem to share it though how long they will support Putin’s adventures in Ukraine once the real cost in Russian casualties and the fall in their standard of living becomes apparent is an open question. Making a bitter enemy of 40 million Ukrainians makes no sense geopolitically either yet that is what Putin’s policies have led to. As to the threat of ‘global nuclear war’ well, if there is such a threat it too is emanating from Putin’s Russia. No one else is rattling nuclear sabers and threatening nuclear escalation but Putin and his generals. If economic self interest is an issue that too is more a problem for Russia than the EU or US. US/German trade was about $175 billion last year with the German trade surplus almost $75 billion as compared to just $74 billion between Germany and Russia and that was before the collapse in oil and gas prices. Toss in Canada and the UK and Germany’s economic self interest clearly is better served by good relations with the Anglosphere rather than pursuing some sort of neo Ostpolitik.

    • Replies: @Kiza
    , @annamaria
  7. Andrei Martyanov [AKA "SmothieX12"] says: • Website

    Good article. As for:

    Barack Obama has never shown the kind of presidential control and resolve that made Harry Truman fire General Douglas McArthur.

    He cannot show it, he doesn’t have it. He is not a statesman, he is a politician–it is a strategic difference. In the end, the issue is not only in Obama’s obvious foreign policy incompetence, it is a systemic crisis of US foreign policy in general and institutions which formulate and conduct it. Firing one or two, or even three neocons, will do no good. A serious problem is across the board incompetence and believing own false narrative. There are simply very few people who can competently convey a reality. As for Europe, in my humble opinion, as of now, Europe will do whatever US will tell it to do. Europe is not a subject of geopolitics, it is an object with no serious leaders, capable to turn this around in the nearest future, in sight. Marine Le Pen, is she a possibility? Maybe, but I don’t hold my breath. Merkel is not it. She will have, as will Europe, to live with the consequences of what she (and US) precipitated in the middle of the Continent.

    http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2015/02/how-west-was-lost-on-visit-of-merkel.html

    • Replies: @solontoCroesus
  8. Andrei Martyanov [AKA "SmothieX12"] says: • Website

    Got kicked out by editing. In continuation of the post. As for “tactical nukes”–it is one of very few points in, otherwise excellent, piece with which I have to disagree. A massive strategic shift in latest edition of Russia’s Military Doctrine received virtually no coverage in the nominal West–another sign that most (not all) of the so called Russia expert community, lives in a parallel universe. This massive change–is a shift of the fulcrum in possible war from generally nuclear to explicitly convention option, with emphasis on Precision Guided, and SMART stand-off weapons. Russia does know (and it is supported by latest developments) that she can win a conventional conflict at her borders against any combination of the enemies–mostly US. NATO European armies is a separate topic, because unlike Iraq or Serbia, Russia can strike targets from Scandinavia to Great Britain (generally, inside Europe) by conventional means. She also can do the same (conventionally) against targets in US. How and why–is a very large separate topic but there were some massive reassessments going on inside Russia’s defense and national security establishment, especially re: NATO’s conventional capabilities.

  9. Kiza says:
    @unit472

    You are a sort of a person who walks into a room full of optimists and says in a booming voice: “You are all going to die!”

    In more detail, your side is playing a couple of anachronistic retrograde games:
    1) develop yourself and deny development to major competitors; prevent creation of all alliances which would help others develop as much or more,
    2) create havoc and then blame the victim of your havoc, that is swap around the victim and the perpetrator (swap around the cause and the consequence); when you control MSM this is so easy,
    3) rely on people’s weaknesses instead of their strengths, that is use relentless propaganda to convince the poorly educated and the disinterested that Ukraine borders US and is thus national interest to pry it away from Russia (also, add Ukrainian Russians to 40M Ukrainians and then declare that they are all anti-Russian),
    4) pump up nationalism by convincing the domestics that they are special, unique and exceptional people, the chosen people (Talmud-chosen, Bible-chosen, Obomber-chosen) and so on.

    Euroasian Union does not have to be against US and Israeli interests, but it would work against their desire for domination. You mention the US-Germany trade, where did you get an idea that EAU would stop trade with the Anglospehere? It is blatantly obvious that for your kind the issue is not B$170 of US-Germany trade, then the possibility that the Germany-China trade could turn quickly into B$300+.

    In my view, your side is playing the win-lose game (to use the corporate cliche) and it will lose eventually. Sense and self interest will prevail.

  10. @Kiza

    The Euro-Asian block promises to turn into one of the biggest win-wins in human history. In the most simplified terms, this is what the deal is:
    1) China brings manufacturing
    2) Russia brings resources
    3) Europe brings technology

    deja vu all over again

    “In the first few months of 1919, as the Peace Conference was getting under way, [Hjalmar] Schacht [then at Reichsbank, who became head of Germany’s central bank] , lulled like many other Germans by the high-minded pronouncements of Woodrow Wilson, still expected a generous peace. He believed that the real problem would be the overhang of debt after the war, which would lead to a general European bankruptcy. He talked naively of a grand plan for reconstruction.
    The great natural resources of Russia would be opened up for exploitation by a unique partnership between Great Britain and Germany,

    Britain providing the leadership and capital,

    Germany the manpower and engineering skills.

    Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World by Liaquat Ahamed p. 107

    Instead — well, you all know what happened instead — zionists won control of Palestine, Russia, Germany, and Wilson (as well as FDR); the USA and its banisters made off with all the gold they could squeeze out of Britain, France, and Germany.

    We are still — STILL living with the Economic Consequences of that Peace.

    • Replies: @Kiza
  11. @Andrei Martyanov

    Firing one or two, or even three neocons, will do no good. A serious problem is across the board incompetence and believing own false narrative.

    Obama needs a brain-scrub.

    He has been infected with the Joshuatic, homicidal ideology of the extended Kagan (crime) family–

    papa Donald http://www.c-span.org/video/?161612-1/book-discussion-america-sleeps

    son Robert http://www.c-span.org/video/?304402-1/qa-robert-kagan

    his ux Victoria Nuland http://www.c-span.org/video/?318814-1/transatlantic-security

    son Frederick http://www.c-span.org/video/?193520-1/book-discussion-end-old-order

    his annoying wife, Kimberly, who runs a school for war http://www.c-span.org/video/?169791-4/u-s-military-power-foreign-policy

    and their Levitic enforcer/hatchet man, Michael Ledeen http://www.c-span.org/video/?123852-1/book-discussion-machiavelli-modern-leadership (pay special attention to Ledeen’s discussion of god’s command to Moses that all those who worshipped the golden calf be slain, a commission the Levites were delegated to carry out. Ledeen states that he is a Levite and is proud of that commission.)

  12. Kiza says:
    @solontoCroesus

    Do I really need to point that, at the point of time you describe, Germany just lost a war of aggression which its Austro-Hungarian cousins started? Although some Germans were and are doing some rather nasty things to some Europeans now (destruction of Yugoslavia, fleecing of Greece and other PIGS, arming of post-coup Ukraine), Germany has been offered participation in the EAU by both the “devil” himself Putin and by Xi. The key question is how strong is the German desire to dominate versus the desire to cooperate? This is implied in the Van Wolferen article.

    Some nations have a propensity for hard work, others are opposite. Some nations have propensity for domination, others are good at cooperation. The 100 billion yuan question is – where is today’s Germany? Does Germany want to be a capo in the US-Israeli global concentration camp, or does it want to be a considerate leading European nation? Despite the alternative reality that the US neocons are desperately trying to create of Russia expanding towards Europe, Russia is not challenging Germany at all for the leadership in (or ownership of) Europe. Russia is happy to sell its resources to any reasonable buyer. But Germany will have to calibrate its relationship with Southern Europe (“the lazy tax cheats”) on its own or the EU will fall apart.

    You write: “The great natural resources of Russia would be opened up for exploitation by a unique partnership between Great Britain and Germany”, I wonder if anyone asked Russia about this partnership and this exploitation. Are you not writing about something that the Anglos may have lead the Germans to believe and are not the Anglos on the opposite side of EAU now? Through membership in EAU, Germany has been offered to be an equal member of the biggest and fairest single free market in the World. You really need to understand what EAU is and what it is not:
    1) it is not a military block like NATO
    2) it is not a financial union like Euro
    3) it is a free-trade union
    4) it is a fast goods and capital exchange union and so on.

    • Replies: @unit472
    , @solontoCroesus
  13. unit472 says:
    @Kiza

    The “EAU” is also a fantasy. Debate is useful as long as there is an underlying agreement that we debate what is and not what you might wish was.

  14. rod1963 says:

    The situation of Ukraine and Russia was one we should have sat out, not installed our own pet oligarchs in Kiev then egged the buggers on to go after the Russian separatists. However since we wanted Syria done and gone like Libya, we need to dispatch Syria’s protector first – that being Russia.

    As a result war is coming. It can be seen with the demonizing of Putin( just as we did with Saddam) making him to be the next Hitler, blah, blah. The insertion of Army trainers into Ukraine and now a push for lethal weapons. Once our weapons get shipped in followed by Special Ops advisers – it will be a replay of Vietnam. Slow and continual mission creep.

    Luckily Obama is not keen on direct action against Russia so he’ll probably keep the lethal weapons out of Ukraine.

    I think after Libya blew up in his face and became a non-state, he’s gotten gun shy.

    But if a Republican or Clinton gets in, bet on them going balls to the walls as most of them outside of Rand are a copy of Bush II when it comes to foreign policy.

    • Replies: @Kiza
  15. @Kiza

    Kiza.

    The material posted was a direct quote; it reflects the thoughts of Hjalmar Schacht at that precious point between the armistice and outcome of Versailles negotiations (a period of time during which, I might add, the Allied blockade of Germany was continued, causing the deaths of as many as 35,000 MORE German civilians).

    Schacht was speculating; thinking; foreseeing: he, more than most was aware of the straitened financial condition of the French and British — and Germans. Based on this understanding, he formed a pipe dream solution that he thought would produce a “win-win-win.”

    The words were not my own; I expressed no opinion or analysis.

    I merely posted the passage from “Lords of Finance” because I thought it striking that you posted a proposal so similar to Schacht’s, that would, you claim, produce a “win-win.”

    The point is that the same parties who disrupted what Schacht (and Keynes) thought would have been a reasonable solution to the problems facing Europe may once again destroy a chance for region-wide cooperation and prosperity in order to maintain neoliberal policies that “reduce Europeans from citizens to consumers.”

    I think I’m on your side, Kiza.

    pace.

    • Replies: @Kiza
  16. Kiza says:
    @rod1963

    It is amazing how some people do not understand it even after all this time. You write:
    “The situation of Ukraine and Russia was one we should have sat out…”

    There was no situation of Ukraine and Russia until the US necons did a color revolution in Ukraine a decade ago and then organized a coup more recently. There was a light thug-of-war between EU and Russia, there were stealing oligarchs, there was an always looming bankruptcy of Ukraine. But there was no war. The current war in Ukraine is a purely US creation, not EU, not Russia. It is a war that Russia enjoys and wants as much as the US would want and enjoy a war in Canada. The only party still fueling this war now is the US, by sending its armed military advisers (troops) openly (whilst only secretly so far).

  17. annamaria says:
    @unit472

    It seem that people of Russia have a rather clear understanding that the US has no mercy when the hegemony of the US dollar is concerned. You continue your childish propaganda about “Putin’s adventures in Ukraine” despite the wealth of facts and commentaries provided by alternative sources of information. You need to realize that MainstreamMedia is owned by a few corporations and that MSM serves only to the interest of the “haves.” This why the words “Foux News” and “presstitute” have entered standard vocabulary.

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2015/03/httpwwwspiegeldeinternationalworldgermany-concerned-about-aggressive-nato-stance-on-ukraine-a-1022193html.html

  18. Kiza says:
    @solontoCroesus

    Peace my friend, I was not criticizing you, just using your writing to make a point.

    The EAU will include or exclude Germany, with the EU it dominates. The outcome depends on which way the Germans turn. Russia and China will be the core of EAU, with or without EU, unless the Anglo-block manages to subjugate and dismember Russia. Nemtsov is only the first sacrifice on the road to vassal Russia, there will be lots more. Russia is a nation under attack. EU will not help Russia, but it would be great if it would not get involved (except the usual haters of Russia: the Poles, the Baltics, the Galicians of Ukraine). China will probably also not help Russia, but it will not join the vultures because it knows it will be the next.

    There are pro-US Germans and there are the Independent Germans. Everything is still very murky, things could turn out in any direction. EAU is, in my view, the most positive of all possible outcomes. It is a (unit472: “fantasy”) outcome which would show to the Anglo-Israelis that manipulation and domination (financial servitude) are out and cooperation and economic development (jobs and living standard) are in. I am a cautious optimist.

  19. “As to Ukraine, the Kremlin line that this was some sort of coup instigated by the US, EU or both is growing tiresome. Corrupt politicians get chased from office from time to time and whatever the US or EU want it still happens. The president of Egypt and the PM of Thailand were both democratically elected and both undemocratically chased from office last year by massive public demonstrations against their rule.”

    …except there is ample evidence to suggest that the US was involved in the Ukrainian case – from audio tapes to billions of dollars in funding for protests to visits by high-level American diplomats and politicians to protesters. I guess we are just supposed to look the other way here and pretend that the US wasn’t involved.

    Furthermore, the Egyptian president wasn’t just chased from office by crowds of protesters (the majority of the public supported him). He was removed by the Egyptian military without much protest by the Americans. There would have been howls of protest from the US had this happened in any other non-client state.

  20. KA says:
    @unit472

    Very interesting . Great observation! The bubble is tainted from inside ! It is coming down collapsing on the Atlanticist,neocons,and on the globally expanded Monroe doctrine of 21 century. Can they get out in time to look for warmongering jobs in China of future!

    Did just somebody call Breedlove a warmonger,liar,and out of touch ! It seems that is the sign of life first thing from Berlin’s arousal out of anesthesia.

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/germany-concerned-about-aggressive-nato-stance-on-ukraine-a-1022193.html

    When did someone say this last time” The German government is alarmed. Are the Americans trying to thwart European efforts at mediation led by Chancellor Angela Merkel? Sources in the Chancellery have referred to Breedlove’s comments as “dangerous propaganda.” Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier even found it necessary recently to bring up Breedlove’s comments with NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg.”

  21. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @unit472

    “As to Ukraine, the Kremlin line that this was some sort of coup instigated by the US, EU or both is growing tiresome” (sic)

    Either you have been in a coma for the past 20 months or you are not very up to speed.

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