MH17 in Context (Pt. I)

World public attention is now fixed on the aftermath of the destruction of  Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 in Donbass in the midst of the Ukrainian civil war. This horrific event is doubtless an immense tragedy worthy of unequivocal condemnation. Before any serious investigation to ascertain direct culpability was established, though, the regime in Kiev and its Western puppet masters spared no time in cynically exploiting this tragedy to gain the maximum dividends to bolster their increasingly weakened position. Unsurprisingly, and with great alacrity, the Kiev regime and the West made not tentative statements, but bold and often hysterical declarations blaming Russia and the militias of Donbass for the tragedy. At the same time, much of the Western and Kiev regime’s tenuous “social media” evidence is already discredited by discerning analysts. [1]

Regarding the tragedy of Flight MH17, context is not only instructive but indispensable. Overall, it is no exaggeration to say that at no historical junction since World War II has global political, geopolitical, diplomatic, and economic conditions converged in such a manner to produce conditions conducive to the outbreak of a general world war. With the world’s unabated transition from unipolarity to multipolarity, the diminishing of Anglo-American hegemony continues to drive the Empire towards increasingly exporting chaos and conflict to prop itself up. One need only look, inter alia, at East Asia’s militarization, Iraq, HondurasVenezuela on multiple fronts, Libya, Syria, and Ukraine itself—the state of which is the direct result of a US-NATO ‘regime change’ operation.

More specifically, the MH17 tragedy’s immediate response should be viewed as part of a long-term US project to geopolitically checkmate Russia—the only great power with the wherewithal and historical dynamism to consistently oppose Western hegemony. MH17 accelerates a strategy that acts through multiple vectors: encirclement through aggressive NATO expansion; subversion through “illegal instruments of soft-power; economic warfare through unilateral sanctions; and ultimately dismemberment via partition — the so-called “Brzezinski Plan.” This ambitious project to impose a Carthaginian peace on the Russian Federation was faltering when the MH17 tragedy struck.

As we shall see, the Kiev regime and its puppet masters in Washington faced defeat on all levels. Internationally, the recent Obama regime effort to “isolate” Russia into becoming a pariah state was an abject failure: Moscow continued its path of economic and strategic cooperation with a multitude of emerging and status quo states in the world’s transitioning multipolar framework. Notably, Russia solidified its strategic alliance with China through a colossal $400 billion dollar economic energy deal. Additionally—in what is a world historical watershed—Moscow helped to broker the BRICS multilateral development bank. This is the first challenge to the “economic hit men” of the Western dominated IMF-World Bank complex—a sinew of continued Western and Anglo-American hegemony. Additionally, Washington’s attempt to recruit Europe in its bid to “isolate” Russia was unsuccessful with the general European response being tepid at best.

Ukrainian Troops

On the ground in Donbass, the Ukrainian armed forces faced tremendous losses and encirclement. They also faced mounting international awareness of the wanton savagery and human rights violations of its punitive ethnic cleansing operation against the entire population of Donbass—which in Orwellian terms it calls an “Anti-Terrorist Operation.” Additionally, signs of a domestic backlash against the human cost of this so-called “ATO” and its forced conscription started to manifest. Meanwhile, the Ukraine’s economy continues a downward economic spiral with the effects of the Western demanded neoliberal austerity regime already being felt by the general populace – and only beginning.

The West and Kiev’s exploitation of the MH17 tragedy is intended to reverse these defeats. The tragedy is a boon to the NATO bloc on a number of levels: it provides justification for Russia’s US assigned bête noire status on the international level; increased US militarization of Eastern Europe, including a potential direct NATO troop presence in Ukraine; while also preparing US public opinion for increased confrontation with Russia; and it gives impetus to Europe adopting a more virulently anti-Russian position. For the Kiev regime the tragedy lends itself to its unmitigated vilification of all things Russian; it conceals their losses on the ground and notably attempts to legitimize their wanton slaughter of the population of Donbass. Through blaming the destruction of MH17—a terrorist-like attack eliciting deep emotional reactions—on Russia and the Donbass militias, it permits the Kiev regime to associate Donbass’s armed resistance against Kiev’s authority with outright terrorism. The Kiev regime’s contention that it is waging an “Anti-Terrorist Operation” in Donbass is thus given credence.

“Isolating” Russia

An omnipresent Western ambition for the expansion of their strategic ‘bridgehead’ into the Eurasian super-continent reached its apex with the onset of the Ukraine crisis. To begin with, the current regime in Kiev is the product of yet another Washington engineered ‘regime change’ operation to create a NATO state (official or de facto) with anti-Russian animus directly within Russia’s ‘soft-underbelly.’ As it continued its path of conducting independent foreign policy, Russia refused to accept NATO’s Ukraine ‘regime change’ scenario in toto—which, inter alia, would have rendered the Black Sea a NATO lake. This refusal was expressed through Russia’s reunification with Crimea. As a result, the US began a qualitative escalation in geopolitically checkmating Russia: “isolation.” US Secretary of State John Kerry warned of measures to “isolate Russia politically, diplomatically and economically” while the New York Times reported, the Obama regime preparing to “retrofit” a “containment” [2] of Russia by holding “together an international consensus against Russia, including even China.”

The US subsequently began an aggressive campaign to pursue this policy. “President Barack Obama gathered with world leaders in a day of delicate diplomacy, as he sought to rally the international community Monday around efforts to isolate Russia,” AP reported. Obama made stops in Asia for his far-fetched attempt to recruit China for this strategy, the London Guardian reported: “The White House has added meetings with the leaders of China and Japan to Barack Obama’s visit to Europe and Saudi Arabia next week, as it seeks to use the six-day trip to build an international coalition and isolate Russia.” Obama also visited close Moscow ally Kazakhstan as “part of ongoing effort to isolate Russia.”

This attempt to “isolate” Russia — territorially the largest nation-state in the world, with the 6th largest economy — and the limiting of its supposed “expansionist” designs (never mind the fact that a democratically elected leader was overthrown through Washington’s machinations) ended in abject failure. Moscow’s path of economic and strategic cooperation with emerging states and Europe continued apace.

In the MENA region Russia clinched an investment cooperation deal with US Gulf state ally Bahrain, to US consternation. Regarding this development, a State Department official noted “this is not the time for any country to conduct business as usual with Russia.” Russia also notably continued to cultivate its burgeoning rapprochement with Egypt under the administration Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, clinching a deal for a below market rate gas export deal. Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy had previously stated Egypt would “seek to nurture and leverage” ties to Moscow. Furthermore, there exists the prospect of increased military cooperation, akin to Moscow’s relationship with Egypt during the apex of Egypt’s influence in the era of Gamal Abdel Nasser.

Crucially, Russia solidified what is now in fact a strategic alliance against the US “Empire of Chaos” with China. This took form through a $400 billion energy deal in addition to economic development for Crimea and industrial cooperation in the field of aviation with China. This deal, called by one analyst the manifestation of a “new Eurasian century-in-the-making” included provisions whereby “the giant, state-controlled Russian energy giant Gazprom will agree to supply the giant state-controlled China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) with 3.75 billion cubic feet of liquefied natural gas a day for no less than 30 years, starting in 2018…the equivalent of a quarter of Russia’s massive gas exports to all of Europe.” Additionally, the major Chinese and Russian central banks clinched deals to begin making payments in their own domestic currencies. RT reported:

VTB, Russia’s second biggest lender, has signed a deal with Bank of China, which includes an agreement to pay each other in domestic currencies. ‘Under the agreement, the banks plan to develop their partnership in a number of areas, including cooperation on ruble and renminbi settlements, investment banking, inter-bank lending, trade finance and capital-markets transactions,’ says the official VTB statement.

Implicitly, the dollar, a sinew of US world supremacy, is excluded from this immense forthcoming deepening of Sino-Russian economic cooperation. That Russia and China committed to a colossal 30 year $400 billion deal signifies a long-term partnership between the two world powers that speaks of a strategic component.

At the Fourth Summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures, China called for a new regional security pact including Russia and Iran. “We need to innovate our security cooperation (and) establish new regional security cooperation architecture,” Chinese President Xi Xinping remarked. Xi also issued a veiled warning against the US’s anti-Chinese militarization in East Asia, asserting “To beef up military alliances targeted at a third party is not conducive to maintaining common security in the region.” The facts speak of a Chinese recognition that the same vectors of subversion and encirclement arrayed against Russia are arrayed against it. Far from aiding in the “isolation” of Russia, or other quixotic American dream scenarios, China understands it must lean on Russia in a mutually beneficial relationship to check the “Empire of Chaos.” Indeed, it was US theoretician Zbigniew Brzezinski, an eminence grise of Obama regime foreign policy, who once referred to a potential Russo-Chinese-Iranian alliance as the most “dangerous scenario” for US primacy on the Eurasian super-continent. [3]

Such a harrowing anti-US strategic framework is arguably beginning to take form, albeit still inchoate. In the wake of the US attempt to “isolate” Russia, signs of a Russo-Iranian rapprochement emerged. As the New York Times reported Russia began negotiating an $8 billion to $10 billion energy deal with Iran. The deal also included a provision for Moscow to export 500 megawatts of electricity and the construction of new hydroelectric and thermal generating plants with a transition network in Iran. Russo-Iranian relations have been mixed with disagreements over the Busheir nuclear reactor and the Moscow’s non-fulfillment of a contract for the shipment of Russia’s advanced S-300 SAM. The US’s increasingly aggressive posture against Russia increases Moscow’s willingness to adopt a position more beneficial to Iran in both cases.

Meanwhile, India—a stalwart Moscow ally—under the new administration of Prime Minister Narenda Modi expressed a desire to deepen its ties with Russia on a multitude of levels. After placing Russia as “our country’s greatest friend,” Modi indicated India was keen to deepen Russo-Indian cooperation including in the areas of defense, investment, trade, and nuclear energy. A prospective $40 billion major Russia-India energy pipeline is also in discussion, and the Indian Navy will have arrived in Vladivostok in Russia’s Far East for naval exercises. In another positive development, after years of mutual acrimony with Japan due to issues such as territorial disputes, rapprochement between the two neighbors continued with Japan already procuring 9.5 percent of its liquefied natural gas from Russia. Also worth noting is the signing of the treaty by Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan that brings into being the Eurasian Economic Union, pending the ratification of each country’s respective parliaments. This is Moscow’s answer to large economic blocs which increasingly come to dominate the international political landscape. This effectively nullifies the Obama regime’s Kazakhstan avenue of “isolation” against Russia.

Outside of the Eurasian super-continent Russian President Vladimir Putin also made successful inroads with a tour of Latin America. Putin began his Latin American tour by writing off 90% of Cuba’s debt, a figure of $32 billion. Putin also signed an agreement for oil exploration in Caribbean waters which contain most of the estimated 124 million barrels of Cuba’s crude.

Putin met with Uruguay’s President Pepe Mujixa to discuss the construction of a deep-water port. The Russian president made a stop in Nicaragua with an unannounced visit to President Daniel Ortega. The leaders discussed the deliveries of agricultural machinery, the placement of GLONASS land stations on the territories of Nicaragua, as well as interaction in other areas such as pharmacology. Putin met also with Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro, and Bolivia’s Evo Morales among others.

In Argentina, Putin and President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner signed an agreement for peaceful nuclear energy with Russia helping to build its third nuclear reactor. Russia will aid in areas such as the design, operation, and decommissioning of old nuclear power plants. Russian atomic energy corporation Rosatom will also tender for the construction of two nuclear power plants. According to Reuters, Russia’s state-owned nuclear company Rosatom would offer “comfortable” financial terms to Argentina. In Brazil, Putin signed a memorandum of understanding with Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff regarding Rosatom and Brazil’s Camargo Correa, envisioning the construction of a nuclear power plant and a spent fuel storage facility in Brazil.

The BRICS Alternative

Perhaps, the most potentially threatening to the “Empire of Chaos”—yet auspicious for the developing world—was the establishment of the BRICS development bank as an alternative to the draconian and predatory IMF-World Bank complex. The US and the West have long been criticized of implementing policies of ‘neo-colonialism’ acting through these postwar Bretton Woods institutions. IMF/World Bank economic prescriptions for the ‘developing’ world, known as the ‘Washington consensus,’ have notoriously failed to facilitate economic development and have often been characterized as instruments of draconian economic exploitation.

For the developing world the establishment of the BRICS development bank represents the first significant systematic challenge or counterpoise to this US dollar and private central bank dominated arrangement. And, as Russian President Putin explained, it should become “a system of measures that would help prevent the harassment of countries that do not agree with some foreign policy decisions made by the United States and their allies.” A Nobel Prize winning economist described the BRICS bank as a “fundamental change in global economic and political power.” According to one analyst: “Way beyond economy and finance, this is essentially about geopolitics – as in emerging powers offering an alternative to the failed Washington consensus. Or, as consensus apologists say, the BRICS may be able to ‘alleviate challenges’ they face from the ‘international financial system.’ The strategy also happens to be one of the key nodes of the progressively solidified China-Russia alliance.” Taken in context, “For Russia, the creation of a $100 billion BRICS development bank and a reserve currency fund worth another $100 billion is a political coup. Just as the West freezes Russia out of its own economic system as punishment for its politics in Ukraine… Russia is tying itself into the financial superstructure of the next generation of economic heavyweights: India, Brazil, China and South Africa.” Overall, these developments pose an enormous challenge to the Western-dominated economic order since the end of World War II.


[1] For example see: “Key Piece of Video “Evidence” for Russian Responsibility for Malaysian Plane Shootdown Debunked,”  “Audio ‘Proof’ of Ukrainian Rebel Responsibility for Malaysian Flight Downing is Fake,” “US Admits Its MH17 ‘Evidence’ is Based on YouTube Clips & Social Media Posts: AP Journalist Challenges State Department Spokesperson on official narrative,” “Ukraine: No “Western” Interest In INvestigating MH17,” “The Most Pathetic Case of Backpedaling I have Seen in My Life,” “The Catastrophe of MH17: BBC in the Search of “BUK” — The Video Report Censored by BBC,” “The Russian Military Finally Speaks!” “Evidence Continues to Emerge MH17 Is a False Flag Operation,” “Multiple Reports: Ukrainian Fighter Jets Were With Malaysian Flight 17 When it Was Shot Down,”among others.

[2] It must be said that this is not a policy of “containment,” but encirclement. Despite the New York Times’s claim that the Obama regime pursues a retrofitting of George F. Kennan’s strategy of “containment,” Kennan – architect of  “containment”– was firmly against continuing NATO expansion against Russia. He argued this policy demonstrated profound ignorance of Russia. The Obama regime’s current policy can be understood as a militant and aggressive policy of NATO expansion against Russia in opposition to Kennan.

[3] See Zbigniew Brzezinski , The Grand Chessboard, pp., 55. “Potentially, the most dangerous scenario would be a grand coalition of China, Russia, and perhaps Iran, an “antihegemonic” coalition united not by ideology but by complimentary grievances…Averting this contingency, however remote it may be, will require a display of US geostrategic skill on the western, eastern, and southern perimeters of Eurasia simultaneously,” wrote Brzezinski.

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