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The Rising Spectre of Nuclear War

Ambassador Jack Matlock made an important speech at the National Press Club on February 11.  Matlock served as US ambassador to the Soviet Union during 1987-91. In his speech he describes how President Reagan won the trust of the Soviet leadership in order to bring to an end the Cold War and its risk of nuclear armageddon.

Reagan’s meeting with Gorbachev did not rely on position papers written by staff.  It relied on a hand-written memo by Reagan himself that stressed respect for the Soviet leadership and a clear realization that negotiation must not expect the Soviet leaders to do something that is not in the true interest of their country. The way to end the conflict, Reagan wrote, is to cooperate toward a common goal.  Matlock said that Reagan refused to personalize disagreements or to speak derogatorily of any Soviet leader

Matlock makes the point that Reagan’s successors have done a thorough job of destroying this trust.  In the last two years the destruction of trust has been total.

How can the Russian government trust Washington when Washington violates the word of President George H.W. Bush and takes NATO into Eastern Europe and places military bases on Russia’s border?

How can the Russian government trust Washington when Washington pulls out of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty and places Anti-Ballistic Missiles on Russia’s border?

How can the Russian government trust Washington when Washington overthrows in a coup the elected government of Ukraine and installs a puppet regime that immediately expresses hostility toward Russia and the Russian-speaking population in Ukraine and destroys Soviet war memorials commemorating the Red Army’s liberation of Ukraine from Nazi Germany?

How can the Russian government trust Washington when the President of Russia is called every name in the book, including “the new Hitler,” and gratuitously accused of every sort of crime and personal failing?

Washington and its neoconservative monsters have destroyed trust with demonization and blame of Russia for violence in Ukraine for which Washington is responsible.

Washington has forced Europe to impose economic sanctions on Russia that are based entirely on lies and false accusations.  The Russians know this.  They recognize the blatant hostility, the blatant lies, the never-ending crude propaganda, the hypocritical double-standards, the push toward war.

Simultaneously China is experiencing  hostile encirclement with Washington’s “pivot to Asia.”

By destroying trust, Washington has resurrected the threat of nuclear armageddon. Washington’s destruction of trust between nuclear powers is the crime of the century.

On February 24, I held accountable Alexander J. Motyl and the Council on Foreign Relations for publishing on February 5 a large collection of blatant lies in order to create a false reality with which to demonize the Russian government.   I observed that the publication of ignorant nonsense in what is supposed to be a respectable foreign policy journal indicated the degradation of the Western political and media elite.

I did not think things could get any worse, but one day later I came across Andrew S. Weiss’ article in the Wall Street Journal.

Weiss’ article is the most amazing collection of misrepresentations imaginable.  It is impossible to believe that the vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment could possible be so totally misinformed.  The false reality that Weiss creates precludes any diplomatic resolution of the conflict that Washington has created with Russia.

What is the explanation for Weiss’ misrepresentations of Putin, the origin of the conflict and the cause of its continuation?

Recalling the confession of Udo Ulfkotte, an editor at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, that he published under his name articles handed to him by the CIA and that the entire European press does the same, was Weiss handed the disinformation by the CIA, or by Victoria Nuland, or is the answer simply that Weiss worked on Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian affairs at the National Security Council, the State Department and the Defense Department and is one of Washington’s propaganda operatives currently operating out of a think-tank?

The more important question is:  What is the purpose behind Washington’s cause and misrepresentation of the conflict?  Was the destruction of trust between nuclear powers intentional or a consequence of other purposes?  Is Washington simply using its ability to control explanations in order to cover up its involvement in the overthrow of a democratically elected government, an outcome that has gone bad?  Or is the answer merely that Washington is peeved that it failed to get its hands on Russia’s Black Sea naval base in Crimea and has had to give up, at least for now, on getting Russia out of the Mediterranean and out of the Russian naval base at Tartus, Syria?

As I explained today to an international conference hosted by institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Moscow State Institute of International Relations, the neoconservative ideology of US world hegemony requires the prevention of “the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere” with sufficient resources and power to be able to serve as a check on unilateral action by Washington.

When Russian diplomacy blocked Washington’s planned invasion of Syria and planned bombing of Iran, the neoconservatives realized that they had failed in their “first objective” and were now faced with a check on unilateral action. The attack on Russia instantly began.  The $5 billion Washington had spent funding NGOs in Ukraine and cultivating Ukrainian politicians produced the overthrow of the elected Ukrainian government.  Washington imposed a puppet government that instantly employed violent words and deeds against the Russian population, resulting in the secession of Crimea and the formation of other break-away provinces.

With English as the world language and the compliant media or presstitutes in Washington’s service, Washington has been able to control the explanation, blame Putin for the crisis, and force Europe to breakup its economic and political relations with Russia by imposing economic sanctions.

In a vain and failed attempt to keep the US as the Uni-power capable of dictating to the world, the neoconservatives have recklessly and irresponsibly resurrected the threat of nuclear armageddon.  The neoconservative dominance of US foreign policy makes impossible any restoration of trust.  Washington’s propaganda is driving the situation toward war.  As neither Washington nor the Russian/Chinese alliance can afford to lose the war, the war will be nuclear.  Any survivors will be doomed by nuclear winter.

The entire world must quickly become aware of the danger and confront the evil regime that the neoconservatives–the Sauron of our world–have created in Washington.  To do otherwise is to risk life on earth.

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. Roberts’ How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format. His latest book is How America Was Lost.

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Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. Roberts’ How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format. His latest book is The Neoconservative Threat to World Order.

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