New York Times, its editorial board suddenly wakes up and recognizes new reality and sounds alarm.
One of the striking warnings in a recent Pentagon white paper on the growing strategic threat from Russia is that its president, Vladimir Putin, could pull a “reverse Nixon” and play his own version of the “China card” with the United States, a reference to the former president’s strategy of playing those two adversaries against each other. Until recently, any relationship between Russia and China could largely be dismissed as a marriage of convenience with limited impact on American interests. But since Western nations imposed sanctions on Russia after it invaded Ukraine in 2014, Chinese and Russian authorities have increasingly found common cause, disparaging Western-style democracy and offering themselves as alternatives to America’s postwar leadership. Now China and Russia are growing even closer, suggesting a more permanent arrangement that could pose a complex challenge to the United States.
One, then, is forced to ask a warranted and, in fact, irresistible question: under what stone did the editorial board of a herald of American liberal exceptionalism spend last 10 years? Why did this reality dawn on them on July 21, 2019 and what were they doing before this date? I know what--they were pushing all kinds of trash dressed as news and analytical materials on Russia and POTUS, being one of the main drivers behind Russiagate. For starters, using today the term "Western-style democracy" in relation to the United States, not to mention her pathetic European vassals desperately trying to bring Orwellian dystopian visions to life, is not a sign of a good taste or, for that matter, of being grounded in any reality. Especially from the outlet which, together with few other propaganda bullhorns of Democratic Party, did all they could, and, actually, largely succeeded, in undermining this very "Western-style democracy". But, I guess, one should expect that from the newspaper which is good mostly as an ersatz toilet paper in times of shortages and which is on its way towards the same end as US main-stream media--being a global laughing stock. Yet, some people still read NYT and this rag commands some attention of alleged "intellectuals". So, why not review NYT's retarded reaction to America's departure from the center of the universe. NYT, of course, does not understand that, in the end, China is Russia's neighbor with all this position entails.
Of course, to sound "competent", NYT refers to the "White paper".
It is a 151pages long concoction, heavy on pseudo-military lingo and simulacra ("US Leadership" anyone on page 123), which is mostly written, with few exceptions, by US and UK (and Israeli, such as Dima Adamsky) political "scientists" and that explains constant referrals to Russian authoritarianism, and some Russia's "coercive strategies", which still do not explain what can possibly the United States do to "stop" these damn Russians. In the best tradition of a military cadet of any Soviet era military academy, writing a preamble to a third or fourth year course work on missile attack on CBG (or deployment of air defense in EW dense environment), with all necessary mantras about Central Committee and "wise" policy of the Party, this white paper does the same, only with "democratic" memes. When no less than Dr. John Arquilla from Naval Post-Graduate School invokes no less than Alexis De Tocqueville's "prediction" as a "starting point" of Russia being that second half (the US being first) of "marked by the will of Heaven to sway the destinies of half the globe"(c), one, certainly, feels compelled to remind Arquilla (you may have guessed already--a Doctorate in Political "Science") that Tocqueville was writing primarily about demography in the times when not only nobody had any idea about internet and cruise missiles, but of the internal combustion engine too.
How is Tocqueville relevant to modern Russia, whose power is NOT in her demography and her economy is about a quarter of that of China, remains a complete mystery to me. But, as I stated above, in one of many my course-works and even in thesis--compliments and bows to Communist Party of the Soviet Union were mandatory in preamble. The similarity with invocation of largely irrelevant but politically correct views and concepts in contemporary Western political, so called, "science" is remarkable in its "Sovietism". Moreover, the similarity with Soviet sloganeering becomes even more eerie when one reads Dr. Richard Weitz' (you guessed it right--a collection of useless degrees) "Recommendations":
Other specific policy recommendations include:
• taking a tough line on intelligence activity in target states, including expelling suspected spies regardless of a likely tit-for-tat response, to deter penetration and control by Russian intelligence services and prevent easy access to local political elites and/or local socioeconomic assets;
• maintaining potent intelligence services and police forces and providing them with the training, guidance, and purview to empower them to meet hybrid force challenges, yet in measured and appropriate ways that will not worsen local dissatisfaction or provide Russia with a pretext for action;
• developing and implementing effective legislation and corresponding enforcement agencies, especially where financial monitoring and media licensing are concerned;
• demonstrating strong and unified national and international political will to stand up to Russia publicly; and
• showing a will and capacity to fight hybrid attacks with defense and deterrence measures—rather than adopting the Russian playbook directly, this means leveraging Western strengths in areas such as finance, soft power in third nations, intelligence gathering, and even cyberwarfare.
For people with Soviet experience these "recommendations" can only bring a smile to their faces since they have everything in them in terms of passion, slogans and vague generalities and practically nothing in terms of actual specific measures--it is so reminiscent of Party Slogans for May day printed in Pravda, you know--to increase productivity, to tighten our rank and file, to be for everything good against everything bad--that we MUST ask the question: do these "specialists: understand that they are simply NOT GOOD in any issue related to modern geopolitics, economy, military power, warfare, diplomacy and international relations? The record of American think-tankdom, driven by the armies of political "science" Ph.Ds, other "Doctors" in International Relations and retired (or active) military officers is one of unmitigated disaster in the last 30 years. Not a single forecast, not a single strategic prediction, not a single assessment turned out to be correct in the last 30 years. Most what American "analysts" wrote on international relations and geopolitics turned out to be a complete pseudo-scientific trash and demagoguery. The body of overwhelming empirical evidence of American military, economic, geopolitical decline is out there for everyone to see. But if the lack of knowledge of these "scholars", who are in the business of referring non-stop to each-other in their "academic" echo-chamber, about Russia is now expected, it is their complete lack of understanding of their own country--what is America of today and where it is going--which wows any observer with gaping holes in judgement by this army of mostly humanities-educated "specialists".
No wonder then, that, be that NYT pieces or numerous White Papers and other "analytical products", most of them do not correspond to reality in any way. I stated years ago--the United States doesn't have geopolitical currency to buy Russia, period. Russia is out of US price range for a long time now. Yet, NYT still issues its own, delusional and grossly dated "recommendations":
Given its economic, military and technological trajectory, together with its authoritarian model, China, not Russia, represents by far the greater challenge to American objectives over the long term. That means President Trump is correct to try to establish a sounder relationship with Russia and peel it away from China. But his approach has been ham-handed and at times even counter to American interests and values. America can’t seek warmer relations with a rival power at the price of ignoring its interference in American democracy. Yet even during the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union often made progress in one facet of their relationship while they remained in conflict over other aspects.The United States and Russia could expand their cooperation in space. The United States is already dependent on Russian rockets to reach the International Space Station. They could also continue to work closely in the Arctic, as members of the Arctic Council that has negotiated legally binding agreements governing search and rescue operations and responses to oil spills. And they could revive cooperation on arms control, especially by extending the New Start Treaty. It was encouraging that top State Department officials met their Russian counterparts twice in recent weeks, including in Geneva on Wednesday, although there was no immediate sign that the two sides made any progress on arms control or other major issues.
For delusional hacks at NYT--Trump cannot "peel Russia away from China" for a simple reason that China herself doesn't want to be peeled away from Russia. I also have news for them--START will not be extended for three reasons:
1. Nuclear weapons are the only weapons which allow the United States to realistically stay relevant in Great Power politics; US WILL initiate the failure of START also because (see below)...
2. US lags in weapons, especially hypersonic stand-off weapons, behind Russia and (see below)...
3. US conventional power is NOT (it never was) what it was and is being presented as "finest fighting force in history". US Armed Forces cannot win a conventional war against peer and, considering the dynamics of modern conflict, are inherently nuclear use-biased once real losses begin to mount.
So, reviewing all those "recommendations" and "analyses" one can easily see American geopolitical and military thought in a state of a complete delusion and disarray. This outcome was inevitable once US "academe" disposed of any pretense of objectivity and operating with verified and sensible data, and bought its own politically correct, ideologically honed "democratic" exceptionalist narrative. The most important geopolitical mistake of a century for the United States was to push, in a brief moment of her weakness, Russia away as an equal partner, thus assuring own departure, for a variety of reasons this pushing precipitated, from a historically brief position of a dominance. What to do then? How about removing all those think-tank sinecures for ignorant political "scientists" and, maybe, trying to get a grip on reality? I know it falls on deaf ears but that could be a good start. US foreign policy, economic and geopolitical thought, and, to a large degree, military one are bankrupt and in the state of intellectual paralysis. For that, as well for America's internal woes, some of them reaching disastrous proportions, the United States has only its "intellectual", entirely corrupt and subservient to globalist oligarchy, class to thank. Any fleeting signs of this class' opening its eyes to a reality, however, can only be described as too little, too late.
In related news: Russia is slowly ridding herself of the heritage of Serdyukov (and cabal of liberal "specialists") reforms in Armed Forces by restoring repair-engineering battalions inside combined arms armies (in Russian).