The U.S. empire has a playbook for balkanizing countries. It inflames ethnic tensions by fabricating atrocity stories, and spreading them around in the areas where it wants conflict to arise. To do this, it singles out an ethnic group (represented by a vilified government) and paints it as a perpetrator of genocide. It backs terrorist groups to fight against the demonized government, or installs leaders that will fulfill Washington’s goals for proxy warfare, or both. It provokes the targeted country into responding, then imposes sanctions on the country. It uses “humanitarian” narratives to give the region’s breakup the illusion of having occurred organically, and of having been done in response to human rights abuses or war crimes supposedly committed by the target.
Since the CIA carried out this type of scheme in Yugoslavia during the 1990s, the empire has applied aspects of it in many other places. Washington has inflamed a proxy war in Syria by aiding terrorists within the country, used Assad’s response to demonize the government with false atrocity stories, imposed sanctions, and backed the Kurds in creating a breakaway state. The latter tactic is a parallel to NATO’s installations of racist leaders within Yugoslavia’s breakaway states, with Assad playing the same role as Serbia’s Milosevic. And despite the glorification of Kurdistan by Western leftists, that state is as racist as those other ones; the reactionary Kurds the U.S. backs are inspired by the Zionist theorist Murray Bookchin, and have predictably been committing ethnic cleansing.
In Ethiopia, the imperialists have been supporting the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front, a terrorist organization that’s used crop sabotage as a weapon in its civil war. The CIA has been justifying this fissuring of the country by its proxy through false atrocity accounts, attributing unsubstantiated stories of cruelty to the government. Sanctions have been imposed there too, worsening the country’s famine. In Afghanistan, the imperialists are using sanctions to create the conditions for a similar terrorist proxy insurgency, so far unsuccessfully. They’re also attempting to foment this kind of destabilization in Myanmar, Xinjiang, Kazakhstan, and—most prominently—Russia.
For the most part, the imperialists are failing to break up the countries they want to subdue. But if they can successfully apply the Yugoslavia model to Russia, they’ll gain the leverage to do the same in numerous other places. Washington has pivoted towards Russia as a target in its new cold war because if China loses Russia as an ally, it will be more vulnerable to Washington’s attempts at weakening and balkanizing the People’s Republic. Then the great-power competition may well be won by Washington, allowing Eurasia to be turned away from multipolarity via the destabilization of its pivotal central states. If Eurasia is subdued, the geopolitical game of chess will be won by the U.S. bloc.
Ukraine is the weapon that the imperialists are trying to use to set off this engineered Eurasian collapse. And they’re employing the same tools from the initial parts of the Yugoslavia destabilization campaign: demonization of the targeted leader and national identity (these being Putin and the Russians), fabricated or false flag atrocity stories (like the Bucha massacre), installation of a racist hostile regime (this being the regime put in by the 2014 Euromaidan coup), and the provocation of a defensive response used to create further war crimes accusations. There are especially parallels between today’s Western disinformation about Ukraine, and the CIA’s propaganda targeting the Serbs. The CIA would carry out attacks and blame them on Milosevic, like how Ukraine’s U.S. puppet regime carries out attacks that get blamed on Russia.
For Russia, a full application of the Yugoslavia model would look like a Soviet-esque failure of the country’s economy, bringing the downfall of the state as Russia currently knows it. Washington would then be able to install a leader like Alexei Navalny, the openly racist opposition figure who’s even further to the right than Putin. This would go along with the country’s balkanization, necessitating multiple puppet leaders being installed at once. Whichever of these breakaway states continues to defy the U.S. will be targeted with proxy warfare, carried out by new U.S. puppet states that have undergone the kind of fascist coup that Ukraine has. The U.S. doesn’t just want to return Russia to the Yeltsin era of a Russian Federation that’s subservient to Washington. It wants to eliminate the possibility of Russia again asserting its independence by plunging it into fascism, and cutting it into several pieces. This would be the ultimate neocon dream, where Russia is divided and conquered.
The problem is that this is a total fantasy. The exact opposite is happening in this proxy war, with Washington seeing success from the side it wants to subdue and failure from the side it wants to win. Russia is bouncing back from the sanctions, experiencing an upswing in the power of the ruble. And the sanctions themselves are so absurdly overkill that they’ve had unintended benefits for Russia; the withdrawal of U.S. fast food chains and other companies from Russia have provided an opportunity for Russian businesses to fill their role, making Russia more economically self-reliant. At the same time, the sanctions are harming the economies of the imperialist countries far more than they’re hurting Russia’s.
Which ironically is making the collapse of these countries more likely, and the collapse of Russia less likely; whereas Russians are overwhelmingly unified behind Operation Z, with a liberal minority being the only ones to oppose it, the drastic maneuvers Russia’s enemies have made to counter the operation are exposing their own lack of credibility. Most of the world hasn’t gone along with Washington’s sanctions because Washington is self-evidently hypocritical. It claims to care about “sovereignty,” yet it’s the country that’s invaded Afghanistan, Iraq, and numerous other countries. It claims to care about “human rights” and “democracy,” yet it’s internationally infamous for having a deeply unreliable “democracy” and for violating the rights of its own people. The world is unwilling to follow its lead because of this, and these contradictions are making its people less likely to tolerate the economic impact on their lives from the sanctions.
How can we believe that prices are being raised for “freedom” when our government obviously doesn’t care about our freedom, let alone the wellbeing of our children? Right now, there’s a baby formula shortage in the U.S. that the Russia sanctions are exacerbating. How can this be for the greater good by any stretch of the imagination? These questions are what many Americans are asking, and as a consequence, these Americans are going to become more open to revolutionary radicalization.
Most ironic of all is that the process of splitting up which Washington wants to happen in Russia is instead unfolding in Ukraine. The Donbass peoples have fought back and won their independence, forming the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic. They’ve done this because Washington’s puppet regime in Kiev has done what the imperialists accuse their enemies of doing: flagrantly violating human rights, committing war crimes when their people rebel, and using their own people as human shields. Ukraine, Washington’s beloved tool for sowing death and destruction in Eurasia, is going to be left with greatly diminished territory. Russia’s recent gains in Mariupol have made victory for Russia, and for the ethnic Russians fighting Ukrainian fascism, overwhelmingly likely. It’s satisfying to see the schemes of the imperialists unravel.
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