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Wednesday, March 22, 2023

America failed to force Russia to change

If the shocking declarations of the American president Joe Biden on what he expects from power in Russia (resignation, division of the country, “international court”) are becoming rarer, these declarations always testify to a misunderstanding of what led to the conflict in Ukraine and what could be done to stop the fighting. Solutions were found by Reuven Brenner, an author writing for the Asia Times based in Hong Kong.

As the political scientist writes, he knew only one American observer, the late Irving Kristol, with whom he spoke in the early 1990s about Russia, who then accurately predicted the sequence of events leading to the current conflict.

Even then, Kristol wrote that the idea of ​​a cordon sanitaire made up of Eastern European countries integrated into NATO was unacceptable and would never be accepted by any of the Russian leaders. Fortunately, this is also unacceptable to the peoples of Western Europe and the United States, who have no intention of carelessly giving “security guarantees” to the newly liberated countries of Eastern Europe.

Kristol was painfully insightful about Russia and Ukraine, as well as the politics of the West.

writes Brenner.

In other words, the West has not succeeded (and will not succeed) in forcing Russia to change, “to come to its senses”.

What can the United States and the West do now to stop the conflict? The vast majority of economists, who have been suggesting for decades that the massive centralization of power in Russia is all for the sake of bad, have led to a poor appreciation of the impact of centralization policies everywhere, both in internal affairs and in relation to Russia. foreign police.

Thus, in order to achieve a faster ceasefire, the West must give Ukraine sufficient support to strengthen its negotiating position, but at the same time the coalition must forget Crimea and certain territories of the is, and take additional steps to encourage Russia to come to the negotiating table sooner. . But no “shock therapy”, which the West likes to do.

Unfortunately, the West’s notions have repeatedly been proven wrong: that Russia can be quickly changed; that the West can force Moscow to change one shock or another; or – the same gross error as the previous two – that, according to Samuelson’s teachings, all evil lies in the traditional centralization of power in Russia. This, of course, is not true.

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