America Is Playing with Fire in Ukraine

Biden Ukraine rockets

“Can a man take fire to his bosom, And his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, And his feet not be seared?” —Proverbs 6:27–29

On June 24, the US ambassador to Russia was summoned to the foreign ministry where she was presented with what is known in the jargon of diplomacy as a démarche. That, in plain English, means the most serious warning—just short of a declaration of war. This is a clear sign that relations between the two countries are on the brink of total breakdown.

The immediate cause of the warning was an incident that occurred last Sunday, when an attack on Crimea by US-made ATACMS guided missiles led to an explosion over a crowded beach in Sevastopol where families were celebrating the orthodox Feast of the Holy Trinity.

It seems that the missile exploded in midair, showering the beach with a murderous rain of cluster bombs, leading to numerous casualties, including children.

The details of the attack are not entirely clear. But it is clear that it could not have occurred without the active involvement of the US military. The official position of the Russian government is that this was a deliberate attack by Ukrainians upon civilians in Crimea.

According to the Defense Ministry of Russia, the attackers used US operational missiles with cluster warheads to kill the maximum number of people. Offline data were entered by US military crews and a reconnaissance drone was on duty off the coast of Crimea during the attack.

While the use of cluster warheads in times of war is not specifically prohibited, the UN has said that if cluster warheads are used in an attack on civilians, even if that attack is the result of negligence, that would constitute a war crime.

Irrespective of whether this was a deliberate attack against a civilian target or an act of criminal irresponsibility, it can certainly be regarded as a war crime. It has provoked a wave of outrage in Russia and demands for retaliation.

This was only the latest of a series of blatant provocations staged by Washington, using the willing services of the Kiev regime, an indication of their frantic desperation when faced with a disastrous situation on the battlefield.

Soldiers Image Anton Holoborodko Wikimedia Commons
The hard fact of the matter is that the war in Ukraine is now irrevocably lost. / Image: Anton Holoborodko, Wikimedia Commons

War irrevocably lost for Ukraine

What is the purpose of these pointless missile strikes against Crimea? From a military point of view, such actions make no sense whatsoever. They have no effect at all on the field of battle, which is centered on the Central Donbas and—though to as far lesser extent than is generally thought—the Kharkiv front.

The hard fact of the matter is that the war in Ukraine is now irrevocably lost. The Ukrainian forces are suffering frightful losses which the Kiev regime is powerless to replace.

The new mobilization law has clearly failed to produce the expected results. Young men have disappeared from the streets of every Ukrainian town, either in hiding from the draft or fleeing from the country altogether.

Ukraine has suffered one defeat after another to Russian forces which now, for the first time, outnumber the Ukrainians. The Russians continue to advance in a slow but determined way, conquering one strategic point after another.

The unpalatable truth that the war is now irretrievably lost is slowly but surely beginning to penetrate all but the most obtuse minds in Washington.

Only the dimwitted clowns in London—who still cling to their stupid dreams of imperial glory—and the narcissistic lunatic Macron—who, for reasons known only to himself, imagines himself as a reincarnation of Napoleon Bonaparte—still indulge themselves with hopeless dreams of a new Ukrainian offensive that will drive the Russian hordes back to Moscow.

But the facts tell a different story. The ill-fated “peace” conference called by Zelensky in Switzerland was a complete flop. Most countries stayed away. Even Joe Biden found a feeble excuse for not attending.

And so few nations were prepared to sign up to a watered-down resolution that the organizers were compelled to add the name of the head of the Orthodox Church to the list (although he is not the head of any state), though not that of the Pope (who is, at least in Vatican City).

Thus, a stunt that was intended to provide proof of growing international support for the Kiev regime, proved exactly the opposite. It showed that support for the Ukrainian cause is collapsing. And US imperialism is more isolated in the world than at any time since the end of World War II.

The economic war against Russia has also failed. Far from wrecking the Russian economy, sanctions have helped it to boom. Those oligarchs who were prevented from investing in the West have instead been investing in Russia. The economy is growing at a healthy 5%.

The US-imposed sanctions have not had the desired effect. Sales of Russian oil and gas are booming and the loss of sales in the West has been offset by the rising price of energy.

On the military front, the Russian army is far stronger than it was at the commencement of the war. According to Putin, it now has 700,000 troops in Ukraine, and the real figure is probably higher. Unlike Ukraine, there is no shortage of volunteers willing to fight.

Biden thought that the Russian army would be no match for modern US weapons. These were presented as “game changers.” The list of these so-called wonder weapons is endless: Javelin missiles, Leopard tanks, Challenger tanks, Patriot missile systems, the Abrams tank, etc.

But one after another, these so-called “game changers” were exposed as useless. They have been systematically destroyed by the Russians, who now have almost complete control of the air and a crushing superiority in artillery, missiles, drones, tanks, and every other fundamental department of weaponry.

Russia’s armed forces have been rearmed and equipped with modern weapons that are more than a match for anything that America or NATO has to offer.

The powerful arms industry inherited from the Soviet Union is churning out a huge amount of tanks, planes, and artillery at a rate with which the West cannot compete.

While the Ukrainians complain about a shortage of artillery shells and other ammunition, the Russians have plenty of both, and will have even more after Putin’s visit to North Korea.

explosion Image Wikimedia Commons
Washington and London only have one solution: carry on fighting to the last Ukrainian. / Image:, Wikimedia Commons

West says: fight to the last Ukrainian!

All this is producing a mood akin to panic in Western capitals. However, instead of drawing the logical conclusion, which is the need to find some kind of face-saving diplomatic formula that would enable them to put an end to this disastrous war and get rid of the Ukrainian question once and for all, the warmongers in Washington and London only have one solution: carry on fighting to the last Ukrainian.

Since they clearly have no coherent military strategy for reversing the disastrous trend of the battlefield, these ladies and gentlemen are racking their brains to find ways and means of hurting Russia, causing such damage that it would somehow compel Moscow to agree to terms that amount to surrender.

This so-called strategy is no strategy at all. It resembles the petulant tantrum of a spoiled child who has been deprived of his favorite toy and takes his revenge by lashing out left, right, and center and turning the whole house upside down.

But sad to say, instead of obtaining the desired favorite toys, naughty children are severely punished. That will be the fate of these petulant ladies and gentlemen in Washington and London.

Everything that they have done to hurt Russia has turned against themselves, wrecking the world economy, reducing the population of the West to increasing levels of poverty, and antagonizing the whole world except for a tiny clique of privileged cronies in Western Europe who are huddling together for warmth under the banner of the criminal imperialist gang known as NATO.

The Americans systematically sabotaged every attempt to obtain peace. They cynically pushed the Ukrainians into a disastrous offensive that ended in a comprehensive defeat and a truly staggering level of Ukrainian losses.

They have never recovered. Yet the warmongers in Washington are still determined to keep the war going.

But no American soldiers are supposed to be killed. And, except for the crazy gang that still exerts a strong influence on Biden’s administration, not many would be prepared to go to war with Russia, which possesses a powerful army and nuclear weapons.

zelensky Image President Of Ukraine Flickr
No matter how much he extracts from the Americans, Zelensky always comes back asking for more. / Image: President Of Ukraine, Flickr

Unwelcome consequences

A few days ago, Donald Trump launched an open attack on Zelensky: “He just left four days ago with $60 billion, and he gets home, and he announces that he needs another $60 billion. It never ends,” Trump said.

That is very true. No matter how much he extracts from the Americans, Zelensky always comes back asking for more.

It is no secret that he has lost the war. No amount of American aid will suffice to alter the disastrous situation on the battlefield.

He demanded long-range ballistic missiles. At first, the Americans demurred, fearing a Russian response. But, as has happened so often, the Biden administration finally gave in to his demands. So, in March, the United States quietly sent longer range ATACMS missiles to Ukraine as part of a package of military aid.

These sophisticated long-range ballistic missiles were capable of hitting targets deep inside Russian territory. In theory, they were almost impossible to destroy.

However, in practice, as has also happened to all the other “wonder weapons,” the Russians soon worked out ways of tracking and destroying them. And indeed a large number have already been destroyed.

For reasons best known to themselves, the Ukrainians used up a large number of these ATACMS missiles in attacks against Crimea. As we have pointed out, the military significance of those attacks was negligible. They amounted to not much more than propaganda stunts to impress Kiev’s Western backers and convince them of the need to send still more arms and money to keep the war going.

But the latest incident has had effects that were both unexpected and highly unwelcome for the Americans.

The result has been an uproar in Russia and the formal warning issued to the US.

This must be seen in context.

Following his usual course of action, Zelensky, having received his ATACMS missiles, proceeded to demand that the Americans drop their policy of restricting the use of such missiles to the actual theater of war.

Zelensky insisted that he needed permission to attack targets inside the territory of the Russian Federation, although, in fact, his forces had been shelling across the border into the Russian city of Belgorod for at least 12 months.

In order to placate the men in Kiev, Biden finally agreed to allow strikes inside Russia—but only in the immediate vicinity of the Kharkiv front.

Unsurprisingly, this did not satisfy the men in Kiev, who immediately demanded the right to fire long-range ballistic missiles deep into Russian territory.

That was a red line for the Russians. Putin warned the Americans (as he had previously warned the French and British) that Russia also possessed long-range ballistic missiles capable of hitting targets anywhere in the world.

The latest developments have arisen from all this with an absolute sense of inevitability. This is where the insane policy of endless provocations and escalation that the Americans and their NATO allies have been engaged in continuously for years have ended up.

To imagine that they could get away with launching missile strikes deep inside Russia and the Russians would just sit on their hands was the height of stupidity. But stupidity is the hallmark of all Western diplomacy nowadays—and that of the Americans in particular.

It is useless for the Americans to deny their role in these events. From the official statement issued by the Russian Foreign Ministry, it is quite clear that they know perfectly well who was behind the decisions which caused the atrocity in Sevastopol.

This is only the logical outcome of this irrational behavior, which begins to look suspiciously like an attack of hysteria masquerading as a fictitious policy.

The consequences for the US and the entire world are potentially extremely serious.

The decision of the US to supply the Kiev regime with the most advanced weapons, including the ATACMS missiles with cluster warheads that were used against innocent people on a beach in Sevastopol, has finally exhausted the patience of the Kremlin.

Russia has pointed out what was already only too obvious, namely that the United States is conducting a “hybrid” war against Russia, using as an excuse Ukraine’s “right” to belong to NATO.

Most people now are becoming aware of this fact. They can see beyond the thick smokescreen of propaganda and have understood that US imperialism is waging a proxy war against Russia in which the unfortunate people of Ukraine are mere pawns in a cynical game of great power politics.

Putin Un Image Wikimedia Commons
It seems that Joe Biden was shocked by the news of Putin’s trip to Pyongyang. / Image:, Wikimedia Commons

Serious escalation

Russia’s comments are only one step short of saying that they are now in a state of war—something that everyone except the clique of crazy warmongers in the Biden administration and the London government wish to avoid.

This is far more serious than any situation that has existed since World War II. And it opens the door for all sorts of things to happen which might have seemed impossible only a few years ago.

The most important fact is that the Russians have now stated publicly that they no longer consider themselves to be in a state of peace with the United States.

That is not yet an open declaration of war. But it is only one step removed from it. Now all kinds of things become possible that were unthinkable before.

It is not likely that the Russians will launch an attack against the United States. They do not wish to start World War III. But there are many other options open to them.

For example, the Russians are going to start supplying sophisticated weapons to enemies and adversaries of the United States. In fact, they are already doing so. This is clear from Putin’s recent visit to North Korea and Vietnam.

It seems that Joe Biden was shocked by the news of Putin’s trip to Pyongyang. Apparently, this was an unexpected and highly unwelcome development. But why that should have been the case is a complete mystery.

Since Washington treats both Russia and North Korea as “pariah states,” it can hardly seem surprising that they should be pushed into closer relations in the face of a common—and increasingly belligerent—adversary.

Nor is it in the least bit surprising, since they have imposed economic sanctions on both countries, that they should choose to ignore those sanctions and open the door to closer trading links.

The Americans throw up their hands in horror at the suggestion that North Korea may be sending artillery shells (half a million, no less!) to help the Russian war effort in Ukraine. But they see no problem at all in arming the Kiev regime with all manner of weapons of destruction—which they have been doing for years.

As usual—it’s one law for America and quite a different one for the rest of the world.

artillery Image Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Wikimedia Commons
The Americans see no problem at all in arming the Kiev regime with all manner of weapons of destruction. / Image: Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Wikimedia Commons

The “rules-based order”

But the rest of the world is getting rather tired of this particular game, which is comically described as the “rules-based international order.”

If the Americans can arm their Ukrainian stooges to the teeth in order to wage a proxy war against Russia on their behalf, why should the Russians not act in the same way?

There can be very little doubt that, in the very near future, the Russians will be providing advanced weapon systems to America’s adversaries in different parts of the world.

At a time when the Middle East is like a powder keg waiting for a spark to set off an explosion, Moscow will be considering arming Iran and other elements with sophisticated weapon systems, which it had refrained from doing up until now. If the Russians decide to wage proxy wars against the Americans across the Middle East, certain things will flow from that.

The implications for America, should Russia form a strategic partnership with Iran, will be momentous.

It will greatly strengthen Iran, and that will have an impact on the balance of power in the Middle East that will limit the United States’s room for maneuver in that key region.

Moreover, whatever advanced weapon systems and technology are supplied by the Russians to the Iranians will eventually end up in the hands of the Houthis and other enemies of the United States in the Middle East.

I saw recently that a merchant ship was actually sunk by the Houthis. Up until now I had only seen reports that ships were damaged. Is this an early sign of the Houthis receiving better arms and intelligence? We shall soon find out. And there are several US warships in that area, which must present very tempting targets.

And there are plenty of others in the Middle East who would be very happy to attack American bases and installations if they were provided with military support, weaponry, equipment, training, intelligence, and data from the Russians.

Such developments will provoke howls of protest in the “free press.” How cruel! How unjust! But if the United States is conducting a proxy war against Russia, why should the Russians not follow their example?

JB BN Image U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv Wikimedia Commons
Biden is like a car with only one gear. / Image: US Embassy Tel Aviv, Wikimedia Commons

“Worse than a crime, it’s a mistake”

The latest events have been largely ignored by the Western media. Yet they undoubtedly represent an important change in the situation.

The 18th–19th-century French diplomat Talleyrand once remarked, “c’est pire qu’un crime; c’est une faute” (it’s worse than a crime; it’s a mistake).

If only the Biden administration possessed a diplomat of Talleyrand’s stature, they could have saved themselves a lot of trouble.

But Joe Biden is not a diplomat at all. He can scarcely be described as a politician of any stature. In fact, one might seriously doubt his ability to manage a hardware store in some small town in the Midwest.

Yet this gentleman is in charge of the destinies of the wealthiest and most powerful nation on earth and has his finger on the nuclear button. Hardly a comforting thought at this moment in time!

This administration has not committed one mistake. It has made one blunder after another in foreign policy, dragging America deeper and deeper into a morass of its own making.

Biden is like a car with only one gear, and he does not know how to reverse. When he speaks, it is like listening to an old gramophone record with a repeating groove.

He seems to operate, not on the basis of rational calculation, but on prejudice, ignorance, and obsession. That is a recipe for disaster.

He is completely obsessed with Ukraine (where his family has material interests) and has a deep-seated and inveterate hatred of Russia and all things Russian.

His Ukrainian policy has gone from bad to worse, and is now on the point of complete collapse. So what does one do? Obviously, following the Biden well-worn strategy: carry on as before.

Thus, one blunder leads to another blunder, as night follows day. As the Bible says:

“As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.” (Proverbs: 26: 11)

fall of rome Image public domain
Has the time come for US imperialism to enter the downward slope which dragged imperial Rome into the dust? / Image: The Course of Empire: Destruction, public domain

Lessons from the decline and fall of the Roman Empire

It would be possible to write an interesting study comparing the present crisis of American imperialism with the decline and fall of the Roman Empire.

It is true that many different elements were involved in that long and inglorious decline. But one of the most important was the fact the empire had overreached itself. It reached its limits and was unable to sustain the colossal burden imposed by maintaining its imperial rule. The end result was a complete collapse.

The very position of the United States as a global power with a presence everywhere in the world is itself a source of great vulnerability. The need to support its interests on a global scale imposes a colossal strain.

This is shown by the war in Ukraine, which represents an enormous drain on the resources of even the richest country in the world. America’s stock of arms has been severely depleted by the demands of Zelensky, which continue to accelerate even as the military position deteriorates.

And everywhere, new conflicts and wars are brewing. Netanyahu’s murderous assault on Gaza has left it in ruins. There are no more real targets left to attack. Yet his aim to defeat and destroy Hamas remains as far off as ever. In fact, it will never be attained.

Given the impasse in Gaza, he is looking to provoke a new war against Hezbollah in Lebanon. That will be a far more difficult and bloody affair than the one in Gaza. And he will be constantly demanding more aid and weapons from the United States.

On the other side of the world, tensions between China, Taiwan, and the Philippines are growing by the day. All of these will be clamoring for more weapons and money from Washington.

But Washington’s resources, although considerable, are not infinite. And the administration will have to decide where the limited supply of arms is to be distributed.

The new crises and wars will represent an insoluble problem, not only for the US, but for its European allies who all find themselves in a similar position.

Has the time come for US imperialism to enter the downward slope which dragged imperial Rome into the dust? Time will tell.

But three decades have passed since the fall of the Soviet Union. At that time, the defenders of the capitalist system were euphoric. They spoke about the end of communism and the end of socialism. One of these gentlemen, Francis Fukuyama, even proclaimed the end of history. But history cannot be so easily disposed of.

History has not been abolished. It pursues its course relentlessly and has a habit of taking revenge on the high and mighty.

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