On democracy

Yesterday I became involved in a geopolitical discussion centred around the situation in the Ukraine. The discussion started on Facebook, of all unsuitable places, and it was this realisation which made me decide to move it to a more suitable medium.

The discussion started as an implied criticism of Russia for having a plan ready for the eventuality that last February’s uprising in the Ukraine and the subsequent coup d’état should lead to a deterioration of Russia’s security. It went on to consider the damage done to several countries by interference from outside by what is usually called the West, but in most cases consists of the US and its vassal states in Europe.  I challenged one of the participants to name some positive effect of said interference anywhere in the world during this young century. At this point the originator of the discussion closed it down with the following comment:

“Regardless of the truth, the argument is flawed [in] that we can not know what would have happened without the involvement of the US/Israel [or] Russia/Soviet Union.
Personally, I consider them to be birds of a feather but can naturally identify with the [constellation which stands for] human and individual rights and free elections, etc.” (translation courtesy of Google Translate modified only by the words in square brackets)

It was at this point that I decided to move the venue. There was too much to be dealt with in the relative short passages for which Facebook is more suitable.

My friend’s first statement can only with difficulty be contradicted, although there are two points of possible contention. The first is that three of the countries in question, Iraq, Libya and Syria, were stable and, in general, flourishing before they were attacked, and that now, after the attacks, they lie for the most part in rubble and civil war, there are millions dead who otherwise might not have been, and many more millions of refugees, living in tents in neighbouring countries, or at the best having been able to establish themselves in foreign countries where they do not know the language or customs and stand on the bottom rung of the ladder when it comes to employment.  The fourth of the five countries named, the Ukraine was also fairly stable, if not well run.  It was deliberately destabilised by the Western constellation. And the fifth country was Afghanistan, which had been destabilised several years earlier by the USSR and which  the effect of the new intrusion by the West has done nothing to help. 

The second point is that none of the countries asked for help from outside, and at least one of the invading constellations firmly maintains in its rhetoric if not in its actions, the sanctity of self-determination.

But it is perhaps the second paragraph which caused me to come down from a warm bed at four in the morning and prepare this post. I am beginning to realise that democracy as it is practiced these days is far from being the panacea its supporters maintain.

In the first place it has the dubious features of pitting one half of a nation’s inhabitants against the other half once every three, four or five years, coupled with the instability in policy decisions by those in power, which the need to toady to the populace in order to gain their mandate for the next period causes.

In the second place it is difficult to see what difference a change of government brings about since it is very rare that the decisions of one government are ever overthrown or even seriously modified by their opponents on coming to power.

In the third place most politicians seem so divorced from the reality experienced by the people who put them there, and so determined to impose their will on a more or less unwilling populace that it is only in name that the democracy in question does not resemble a dictatorship.

In the fourth place we have seen in the last few weeks a perfect condemnation of the democratic process in the fate of Greece, where a clear majority vote by the populace of Greece has been overthrown by the unelected dictators of the EU commission, the ECB and the IMF. One’s only hope in this context is that perhaps the last verse has not yet been sung in that song.

And in the fifth place, the very idea that democracies nowadays stand for human and individual rights is almost obscene. Since when has mass surveillance had anything to do with human or individual rights? Quite the reverse. And the mere fact that the democracies are involved in externally effected regime change in the target countries is a travesty of human and individual rights in the target countries, to say nothing of the fact that the underlying cause of the regime change is the benefit of the external country, and not the benefit of the inhabitants of the target country.  On this point I can add that, this very day, as I edit my post some ten hours after writing it, I have read a report from Amnesty International with the headline ‘Britain is leading the war against human rights’.

The thing most people want from whatever form of government they live under is stability, preferably stability which can lead to welfare improvements. They want homes, schools, hospitals, places of work and the freedom to enjoy these benefits. They do not want to spend their days in tents in neighbouring countries, faced with the loss of their jobs, their welfare, and the education and future of their children. In four of the five countries mentioned above these benefits were available. In a dictatorship they have to be available, for if they are not, there will be revolution and a new dictator will be found who will deliver.

The only difference between a dictatorship and a democracy in this respect is that in a democracy the old dictator will probably not be hanged from a lamp post or shot with a machine gun in front of the news cameras.


Some questions about Minsk 2

So the cease-fire has started and is ‘more or less’ being kept by both sides, although there is sporadic gunfire around the besieged troops in Debaltsevo.  Who started it, and who responded is anybody’s guess.  All I can say is that I can’t see that the pro-russian forces had any incentive to start, which the Kiev forces did, but that is not conclusive.

However, to return to the title of this post, one must ask why none of the big four at the Minsk 2 talks signed the agreement?  And why, when a deal – however fragile – has been reached, why choose this time to add new sanctions against Russia?  And if Europe has agreed to these sanctions, and they are not just being discussed, why did Greece not object?

Here are some suggestions.

It is my belief that the initiative by Merkel and Hollande in going to Moscow was a case of sheer terror, terror that the Empire of Chaos in the west was leading up to a war in Europe, the third one in a century, a war in which the Empire itself would stand on the wings and watch Europe burn, coming in at the last minute to tidy up and ‘rescue’ Europe from itself.  It has long been obvious that the Empire has no respect for Europe, which it considers, with some merit, as its vassal state, and is now in the process of putting an end once and for all to any aspirations Europe may have or have had to  play a significant role in world events.

The Empire orchestrated the coup d’état in the Ukraine, and was presumably not at all pleased that Merkel and Hollande might be getting ideas beyond their station and trying to halt the civil war which is raging.  Thus Merkel, who must have been tired from all the battles she is fighting on so many fronts, was nonetheless summoned to Washington to be reprimanded and given her instructions for the big meeting with Putin.

If I were in Merkel’s shoes I would notwithstanding be extremely worried about the situation in Europe, not least as a majority of her landsmen are against annoying Russia  any more than she has already done, and very much against another war on the continent.  And this may be the reason why neither she nor Hollande signed the Minsk 2 agreement.  They might have tipped Poroshenko off, or he might have seen the writing on the wall by himself, and so he stayed away from the pen.  With all this shyness in the room, there is no chance Putin is going to pull out his biro either, and so this agreement was signed by none of the leaders.  Not that that is particularly significant, since, as others have pointed out, there is not a lot of believable meat in the agreement anyway, and the chances of an effective cease-fire are of the same order of magnitude as that the sun will come up in the west tomorrow, and set in the east.  Still we yokels on the ground can hope.

And the sanctions?  Well, the Empire is hell bent on having war in Europe, a war which, like the previous ones in Irak, Libya, Yemen, Afghanistan, Syria and now the Ukraine, will turn Europe into a pile of rubble.  So throw a little extra petrol on the fire and see if one can get Putin to react.  My goodness, have they misread that man!  If he reacts to the new sanctions it will not be by getting involved in the Ukraine.  He will merely impose some more sanctions back on Europe and the Empire of Chaos, sanctions which this time will really hurt.  How about closing Russian airspace?  Or think, if he only imposes them on the Empire, and lets Europe off the hook.  That would distress the Empire no end and maybe drive an even bigger wedge between Europe and the US than the one the US is doing by itself.

As to why Greece has not rejected the new sanctions, this makes me suspect that they are merely at the proposal stage as yet, and have not come up for ratification by European leaders.  When they do, I think you will find that Greece will have its say, even if it is only to have an extra lever on the intractable EU/ECB part of the troika.

And maybe, just maybe, Merkel and Hollande can persuade the other European heads of state, apart of course from Cameron of the UK, that the time has come to make Custer’s last stand against the Empire of Chaos.

(When) will they ever learn?

The leaders of Europe’s larger nations, Germany, the UK, even Finland are making fine, impassioned speeches on how Greece is not going to get its way on debt write-off, but Europe is more and more moving into that space between a rock and a hard place. And they have only themselves to blame.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realise that you can’t solve a debt problem with more debt. Only by restructuring the debt which already exists and/or writing off some of it. A twelve year old can tell you that. But there are obviously no rocket scientists amongst Europe’s leaders, and apparently no-one with the intelligence of a twelve year old either.

Greece cannot repay the existing loans in the time allotted so sooner or later Greece will be forced to default. And where will that get them, when Greece is using the same currency as the rest of the Euro-zone? Where will the money come from to pay all the wages, never mind the debt? And as for Yanis Varoufakis’ statement that he wants to stay in the Euro-zone, his only way out of the present situation is to leave the Euro-zone. He has to have control of his currency. It will take a fifteen year old to work that out, so the Euro-zone leaders are already eliminated.

It is time for the European leaders to take a look around the world and see what is going on, and decide in what way they want to be a part of it. The middle east is a mess – which in fact it has been almost as long as I have been alive – but the mess is getting worse. The Empire of Chaos in the west has orchestrated wars in country after country, Libya, Irak, Syria, to say nothing of their role in the Arab Spring countries. And in country after country they leave the place in rubble: no homes, no schools, no hospitals, no places of work; just rival war-lords and frightened citizens, or citizens fleeing to neighbouring countries.

I could also mention the devastation left in Palestine by those in charge of the Empire of Chaos, Israel and its psychopathic leader, Benjamin Netanyahu.

And now the Empire of Chaos thinks it is time to speed up the destruction of Europe also. Europe had the chance to be a second player on the world scene, with a larger population than the Empire of Chaos, and a comparable market. However, the Empire of Chaos had the brilliant idea of getting the UK into the EU, to stir up as much trouble as possible and veto as many plans the Empire did not like as possible. Don’t believe what you hear about the UK leaving the EU. Who will then run the Empire’s errands?

Next the Empire wanted to get NATO nudging Russia’s borders, so it got Victoria ‘Fuck the EU’ Nuland to orchestrate the coup d’état in the Ukraine and put neo-nazis and right-wing extremists in power. She then started a civil war against the russian-speaking half of the country, hoping to make Russia do something stupid, not realising that the stupid people were all on her side.

And what do we have now in the Ukraine? Kiev’s troops are on the run, running out of ammunition and disorganised. The devastation is not so total as it is in Libya and the other countries mentioned above, but almost nothing works. The Ukraine is bankrupt and will get no help from either the EU or the Empire of Chaos – apart from the usual help from there: weapons. And Russia merely waits for its opponents to admit defeat, and then it will quietly step in and sort out the mess, and the Ukraine will return sooner or later into the arms of Mother Russia.

The danger is that Greece could be the next Ukraine. If Prime Minister Tsipras and Minister of Finance Varoufakis realise in time that they have to get out of the Euro-zone, they have already been made an offer of help from Russia, and you can bet that another helping hand will be Chinese. The Empire of Chaos cannot allow that to happen, so they will send in Victoria ‘Fuck the EU’ Nuland again to talk to her allies in Golden Dawn and start a new coup d’état in Greece, with rubble as the result once more.

Spain is next in line, although they might get cold feet if the civil war in Greece starts early enough, and behind them are Italy, Portugal and maybe Ireland.

The question is how many of these countries must be turned to rubble before European leaders realise that they have no friend in the Empire of Chaos. You never have a friend in a bully. You just have a postponement of your turn to get slaughtered.

And so I return to the question in the title of this post. Will they ever learn, and, if so, when?

© James Wilde 2015