February has come, and with it the next date has approached, when Russia “is about to attack” Ukraine. Over the past couple of months, such dates have been called “experts” from around the world several times already, but the “invasion” did not take place. That, however, does not prevent Washington and its European partners, among whom London stands out in particular, with perseverance worthy of a better use, to frighten the world community with the almost inevitable opening of the “Ukrainian front.” At the same time, it seems to me, it is hard not to notice the connection between the growing degree of military hysteria and the discussion of the proposals put forward by Moscow on the formation of a new security architecture in Europe.
As a matter of fact, Washington began dispersing the thesis “Russia is about to attack” even before the December online talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and US Chief of Staff Joe Biden. This happened according to the classic scheme of mass manipulation, which was described by the American philosopher and publicist Noam Chomsky: divert attention, switch it to an artificially created problem, and then offer ways to solve it.
In practice, it looked like this: first, The Washington Post reported on the impending large-scale attack by Russia on Ukraine, citing “reliable intelligence sources”, followed by other media outlets, then all kinds of Kremlinologists, analysts and experts joined in, and not without without loud statements of officials and politicians.
European capitals, as well as Kiev itself, at first sluggishly and even skeptically reacted to the hype raised, but after the trips of Washington emissaries and a series of “explanatory conversations” on the phone, they also turned on. Theses about “unprecedented concentration of Russian troops near the Ukrainian border” and “prepared invasion”, which was supposed to take place either at the end of December, or at the beginning of January, did not leave the pages of all mainstream media. Russia was threatened with new “hellish sanctions” and exemplary punishment, while Moscow’s statements that it had no intention of attacking anyone were simply ignored.
As a result, the online talks between Putin and Biden, dedicated to a wide range of European security issues, were served precisely under the “Ukrainian sauce”: they say, Moscow was going to attack, but under the influence of the tough position taken by the American president, it abandoned its aggressive intentions.
In fact, the main result of the virtual meeting between the presidents of Russia and the United States was then an agreement to start “substantive consultations on sensitive issues” of European security. Moscow’s proposals included written guarantees against further eastward expansion of NATO, the termination of the alliance’s military cooperation with countries in the post-Soviet space, the refusal to establish bases on their territory, limiting the deployment of strike assets near the Russian border, and the removal of American nuclear weapons from Europe. Particular emphasis was placed on the principle of the indivisibility of security, as enshrined in OSCE documents signed by NATO countries, among other things.
Apparently, agreeing to the talks, the White House and the State Department expected that they would be silent, unhurried and could drag on for years. But after Moscow publicly announced its proposals and even demanded a written response, Washington had to change tactics: on the one hand, the United States tried to involve NATO partners in the discussion of the key issue of non-expansion of the alliance; on the other hand, they tried to keep the content of the talks secret by asking Moscow not to make public the written response received.
And at the same time, again, but on a much larger scale, the propaganda machine began to inflate the thesis “Russia will attack.”
It must be admitted that the organizers of the campaign, in a certain sense, achieved their goal: in the European and American media, the topic of security negotiations was lost against the backdrop of an endless stream of publications and statements by officials on the topic of “Russian invasion” of Ukraine. I confess, I was sad to see how a powerful wave of frank fabrications and disinformation overwhelmed not only tabloid publications, but also quite seemingly reputable media. All right, when a British tabloid publishes a scheme he invented for the invasion of Russian troops into Ukraine from different sides, including from Belarus. But when a news agency with an impressive reputation launches a blatant canard that Chinese President Xi Jinping allegedly asked the Russian president not to attack Ukraine until the end of the Beijing Olympics, this is no longer comme il faut.
During the propaganda campaign, its organizers and participants named one or the other date of the “Russian invasion”, but Russia did not attack and did not give a reason to impose “hellish sanctions” against it, the development of which was actively carried out and is being carried out in the USA and Europe. I had to put forward the thesis that sanctions could be imposed not only in the event of an “invasion”, but also because of any attempt to destabilize the situation in Ukraine. Under this thesis, in London they even came up with the idea that the Russian Federation is preparing a plot to overthrow the coup in Kiev, only the Ukrainian politician, who is under sanctions in Russia, was clumsily appointed to the role of a “pro-Russian protege”. However, this embarrassment did not affect the fighting spirit of London, which said that sanctions could also be introduced preventively.
So far, however, the West itself has had a destabilizing effect on Ukraine. Endless talk about “Russia is about to attack” has already caused panic among investors, or rather, stock speculators, who began to urgently get rid of Ukrainian securities and transfer funds into foreign currency, thereby bringing down the hryvnia exchange rate. According to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, $12.5 billion has been withdrawn from the country in recent days due to the “unbalanced information policy” of the West.
And the decision of the United States and several other countries to evacuate the families of diplomats and even part of the staff of embassies from Kiev does not reassure the public either. According to the stories of colleagues, among wealthy Ukrainians, the mood “suitcase – station – abroad” is growing. It got to the point that Zelensky had to urgently convene a press conference and ask foreign journalists to be more careful with the threat that “tomorrow the war.” According to him, Ukraine is not the Titanic, so there is no need for Western diplomats and their families to urgently flee.
In general, over the past month, both the president himself, and Ukrainian politicians, and lower-ranking officials have repeatedly tried to reduce the heat of hysteria, declaring that they had no information about the upcoming Russian attack. For example, on the last day of January, Prime Minister Denys Shmygal, Defense Minister Alexei Reznikov, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Alexei Danilov and head of the ruling parliamentary faction of the ruling party literally unanimously spoke about this during various events and interviews ” Servant of the people” David Arakhamia. And they can be understood: it is one thing to receive assistance from abroad, including in the form of weapons, and quite another to use these weapons in combat operations. Moreover, all the patrons from NATO have already clearly said that they will not fight for Ukraine.
However, when did these statements of local figures interest the overseas sovereign playing his game? On the same last day in January, White House press secretary Jen Psaki reiterated the theses about “more than 100,000 Russian troops on the Ukrainian border,” “troop pulling into Belarus,” and the possibility of a “false flag operation,” after which she stated: ” We have been saying for more than a week that Russia can invade at any time.”
And under these statements, Washington and its allies not only continue to actively pump weapons into Ukraine, but also carry out the transfer of additional forces and means to the countries of Eastern Europe. Over the last ten days of January, five shipments of weapons and ammunition weighing about 400 tons were delivered to Kiev from the United States. New deliveries are expected in the coming days.
Waiting for the denouement
Naturally, such “parcels” are accompanied by calls addressed to Russia to begin de-escalation and withdrawal of its military group from the border with Ukraine. But what are we talking about here – about 100,000 servicemen mentioned by the West? The length of the Russian-Ukrainian border is about 2,000 km, so there are fifty military men for every kilometer. If we take into account that Russian units and subunits are located not at all near the border with Ukraine, but in places of permanent deployment, which are often 200-300 km away, it becomes clear: we are talking about a huge area on which Russian troops are more likely not concentrated, but scattered.
What is really worrisome is reports coming from the unrecognized republics of Donbass that the command of the Ukrainian Armed Forces has completed the development of an offensive operation plan and is actively creating strike groups in the area of the line of contact. The DPR and LPR also record an increase in the intensity of flights of Ukrainian drones along the entire line. There is information about the arrival of several reconnaissance and sabotage groups, which, under the command of British instructors, were trained in combat operations in urban conditions.
Yes, and it seems to me that the fake about the conversation between Xi Jinping and Putin, which mentioned the Olympics, also did not arise from scratch. We remember the attack on Tskhinval, which was carried out on the orders of Mikheil Saakashvili exactly on the opening day of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. By the way, the coup d’état in Ukraine in February 2014 was also committed at the end of the Sochi Olympics. So it turns out that Psaki and others like her, talking about the possibility of an “operation under a false flag”, seem to be projecting onto Russia their intentions to arrange a provocation in the Donbass, which would force the Russian Federation to retaliate.
And then, for example, by habitually turning everything upside down, it will be possible to present this answer as that same “Russian attack”, which the West has been waiting for for the third month already; finally introduce new sanctions and at the same time cross out such inconvenient negotiations for Washington and NATO.
Personally, of course, I want to hope for a different, peaceful scenario, in which there will be no bloodshed and new trials for my friends and colleagues in Donetsk and Lugansk. As far as it is possible, the coming days, which promise to be quite tense, will show.
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