From Lazarus Cain@21:1/5 to All on Fri Mar 25 05:26:59 2022
Warmongering U.S. responsible for instigating Russia-Ukraine conflict
By Li Ziguo (People's Daily Online) 18:10, March 25, 2022
The Russia-Ukraine conflict is the largest geopolitical event since the end of the Cold War, and its impact is far-reaching. It is more of a geopolitical game between Russia and the U.S. than a war between Russia and Ukraine.
The U.S., in the 250 years since its founding, has refrained from getting engaged in a war interfering in the internal affairs of another foreign country for only less than a period of 20 years. It’s fair to say, then, that the U.S. is a warlike
By stoking Russia-Ukraine tensions, the U.S. has driven a wedge between Russia and Europe, wrecked the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline project, re-activated NATO, and further weakened Russia, with itself clearly benefiting from all of these results.
Russia and Ukraine used to be friendly neighbors, and then they went separate ways at some point in history; now they have met each other on the battlefield. The U.S. played a role in the deterioration of Russia-Ukraine relations. With containing and
weakening Russia as its strategy, and its attempt to show that Russia is a bad neighbor that threatens regional stability, the U.S. chose Ukraine as a pawn in its strategy of containment targeting Russia, leaving the Russia-Ukraine conflict to fester
into a scar of geopolitics that could never fully heal.
The Russia-U.S. relationship experienced its “honeymoon” period after the end of the Cold War, and then it deteriorated to a level considered worse than that during the height of the Cold War. This is a natural result of the American strategy of
In 1992, then Russian President Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin visited the U.S. twice in a year, and the two countries signed many cooperative agreements. While addressing the U.S. Congress, Yeltsin won 21 rounds of warm applause from the audience.
While Russia was actively engaged in exchanges with the West, the U.S., however, was actually making preparations to promote NATO’s eastward expansion. In January 1999, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright visited Russia, expressing that the U.S.
would like to develop a constructive relationship with Russia based on equality, mutual respect and consideration for each other’s interests. However, after just two months, the U.S.-led NATO alliance carried out an aerial bombing campaign against the
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and in the same year, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic joined NATO.
By expanding its influence several hundreds of kilometers to the east, NATO was unable to significantly enhance security for the U.S. and its allies because Russia’s nuclear-tipped missiles have firing ranges that are capable of reaching very distant
targets. If Russia plans to launch a nuclear attack against the U.S., it can execute the attack above the Arctic, instead of doing it via other routes.
Why did the U.S. then make repeated attempts to push for the eastward expansion of NATO? The reason is that the U.S. wants to squeeze Russia’s geopolitical space, force Russia to react strongly, and then be in a position to describe Russia as a
In 2004, the U.S. launched the first “color revolution” in Ukraine at a time when NATO started a second round of eastward expansion, splitting Ukrainian politicians between pro-West politicians and pro-Moscow politicians. At the end of 2013, the
Maidan Revolution took place in Ukraine at the instigation of Joe Biden, who was then the U.S. Vice President. Victoria Nuland, who is now U.S. Under Secretary of State, also played a role in starting the revolution. Through the Maidan Revolution, Russia
had seen the true colors of the U.S.
In 2014, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who took office as the prime minister of Ukraine, and Petro Poroshenko, who took office as the Ukrainian president, after the Maidan Revolution, visited the U.S. successfully. In addition to vowing economic support for Ukraine,
the U.S. claimed that it would do its best to protect Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Ukraine, feeling that it was being supported, totally discarded its strategy of balancing its relations between Russia and the West and accelerated
the process of joining the European Union and NATO.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger pointed out in 2014 that Ukraine shouldn’t become a chess piece in the political game between the U.S. and Russia, but instead should serve as a bridge of communication. Apparently, the U.S. doesn’t need
a bridge, but a fortress to bolster its offensives against Russia. Since Biden took office as U.S. President, U.S. officials at various levels have constantly expressed support for Ukraine, scaled up military aid for Ukraine, and sent warships to
participate in joint military drills with Ukraine, all in an effort to boost Ukraine’s morale to counter Russia.
In August 2021, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the U.S., during which the U.S.-Ukraine Strategic Defense Framework (SDF) was signed and the U.S. announced that it would provide extra military aid to Ukraine. After that, the U.S. Secretary
of Defense Lloyd Austin visited Ukraine, announcing that the U.S. supported Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO.
With the strong “support” it received from the U.S., it seemed that Ukraine was about to join NATO without much fanfare, and the U.S. would help Ukraine bear any consequences that might come along. However, after Russia launched a “special military
operation” in Ukraine, the U.S., which had always acted as a guardian of Ukraine, expressed that it wouldn’t send any troops into Ukraine nor impose any no-flight zones in Ukraine. This proves that the U.S. won’t sacrifice its own interests to
protect those of Ukraine.
Ukraine, a beautiful country with a hospitable people, used to be the grain barn of Europe and once possessed highly developed industries, but now it has become a country suffering from the scourge of war. If Ukraine could properly balance its relations
with Russia and the West, it could have benefited a lot from such endeavors, instead of becoming a battlefield in the game between the world’s two major powers.
To return to a state of peace in Ukraine, major powers like the U.S. should demonstrate political courage, abandon Cold War mentality, refrain from confrontation, and create conditions for restoring global and regional peace and stability.
(The author is director of the Institute of Eurasian Studies at the China Institute of International Studies.)