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By John Helmer, Moscow

It takes time for politicians to understand.

When the Obama Administration pulled their Kiev putsch of February 21, 2014, they, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and their British and French counterparts understood they were in for a long war. Merkel has admitted as much;  the British and French have lost power and been replaced by successors impatient to win propaganda victories if they can — and not lose on the battlefield too quickly if they cannot.   

By December of 2021, US officials believed they were almost ready to expand their war, recover Crimea and the Donbass, and inflict such a battlefield defeat on Russian forces as to trigger chaos, then regime change in Moscow. This calculation is why the US and NATO dismissed negotiations on the terms of the small pact, the Minsk accords of 2015, and then the larger pact for Europe of December 2021  – an idea the Russians called indivisible sovereignty, the Americans reciprocal security, the Europeans non-aggression.

A quick preemptive defence and preventative war was an idea of President Vladimir Putin’s. It was neutralized in the Kiev operation during the first month of the campaign last year. The aim then was not to capture the city, but to trigger Ukrainian regime change, then negotiations. By the time the Istanbul talks began,  the Zelensky group remained intact, and the long war commenced. This had been the anticipation of the Russian General Staff then. It still is.

Long means years.

Long enough in the US calculation for President Joseph Biden not to die before his re-election in November 2024. This is the only war casualty the US cares about for the foreseeable future; it explains why there is, and can be, no American anti-war movement of any consequence.  So far, so good – Biden’s death has been averted at a cost of at least 250,000 Ukrainian combat and civilian deaths, plus Poles, Germans, French, British et alia. But these numbers don’t count in Washington because Biden is currently beating every potential Democratic or Republican Party presidential candidate in next year’s election.  Polled about this, US voters who are negative towards Biden regard his conduct of the war against Russia in the Ukraine more positively, less negatively than any of his other policies.

This is not only curtains for anti-war voter mobilization in the US. It  makes recent statements   by Donald Trump that if elected, he will stop the war “no longer than in one  day” a desperate, cynical bid, not for American votes, but for Kremlin support to his candidacy.  

The Russian General Staff counts the length of the war as the time they plan to spend destroying all Ukrainian force capabilities east of the Dnieper River, and establish a demilitarized zone west of the new Russian border of the Donbass so deep as to put NATO artillery and other forms of attack out of range. Long enough also to destroy every new NATO weapon system promised, transported, or deployed from the US and NATO to Ukrainian territory.

The Chinese government and President Xi Jinping count the length of this war as even longer. They see the acceleration of US economic warfare and sanctions against them; new force deployments around China’s borders; and the expansion of US gun platforms like Japan, South Korea, and Australia will follow the pattern already set against Russia. Only by Russia’s victory on the field and the retreat of the NATO side to the underground bunkers of Lvov can China be secure for Xi’s Central Military Commission, who also need time to practice, plan, test, plan again.

All of this was very well understood in the talks between the Xi and Putin and their staffs in Moscow last week. The talks were a success because neither side is in a hurry now and said so. Negotiations on the Ukraine, Putin said in his concluding Kremlin statement, will start “when the West and Kiev are ready for it. However, so far, we have not seen such readiness on their part.”  Xi replied in his Kremlin statement that his timing is longer than that. “We…firmly stand on the right side of history”, Xi said.    

For failing to appreciate this, the Biden Administration warfighters and their propaganda organs can be excused.  So long as Biden doesn’t die, they keep their confidence the field will be theirs, or at least the election clock.  

Less excusable are the failures to read correctly what the hands on the Russo-Chinese clock are pointing to by the anti-war Americans – old soldiers like Douglas Macgregor;  old professors like John Mearsheimer;  old dissenters like Noam Chomsky and Daniel Ellsberg; old journalists like Seymour Hersh. Because this is a long war, they are running out of time.

For the time being Biden and his officials have neutralized an anti-war movement in the US, and put a stop to European attempts for a negotiated settlement short of battlefield defeat and Ukrainian capitulation – that was the Scholz-Macron-Sunak formula of “peace talks for arms” which was prepared in luncheon meetings during the month of February.  

This formula was dropped after Scholz flew to a private meeting with Biden in Washington on March 3. The nine-line White House communiqué was not accompanied by any statement from the Berlin chancellery.  Instead, the day before, Scholz had dismissed all negotiations for a Ukrainian settlement. “One cannot negotiate with a gun held to one’s head, except for one’s own subjugation,” he told the Bundestag.  The gun and subjugation Scholz was referring to, he claimed, were Russian, but for Germany they are American.

After the session with Biden, the German state radio reported Scholz as saying it is “really important that we [have] acted together [and also] important that we give the message that we will continue to do so as long as it takes.”  

In parallel to neutralizing German and other European resistance to the war, Biden is convincing US voters  there is no liability for them if he continues running the war as he’s been doing.


Source: https://www.realclearpolitics.com

Source: https://www.realclearpolitics.com/



Biden’s success in waging the largest war in Europe since 1945 without domestic liability – without even US voters noticing – is exceptional. In the Pew Research Center’s  last polling of the issues Americans volunteer as their priorities, the war against Russia in the Ukraine didn’t rate a mention in the top 21 issues.

Source: https://www.pewresearch.org/

American critics of the war policy and advocates for negotiations hold the view in common that the Russian Army is winning the war, and that politically the Kremlin will be in a position soon enough to dictate terms of Ukrainian and US capitulation.  They differ in their degrees of hostility or sympathy for Russian policy-making; they are reluctant to endorse the possibility of Russia’s defeat of the US and NATO in Europe, they argue instead for a settlement to forestall that outcome.

They don’t recognize, however, that American voter indifference to the war, its risks and costs, is the writing on the wall. It is therefore unclear to whom the critics think they are addressing their message – and who in fact is listening.  Retired US Army colonel and Trump Administration official, Douglas Macgregor, appears to be directing his views towards the competing Republican Party candidates for the presidency.

Video of Macgregor (right) of January 13, 2023.  His latest written commentary, March 14, 2023:  “In contrast to the Soviet Union’s hamfisted and ideologically driven foreign policymaking and execution, contemporary Russia has skillfully cultivated support for its cause in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia. The fact that the West’s economic sanctions damaged the U.S. and European economies while turning the Russian ruble into one of the international system’s strongest currencies has hardly enhanced Washington’s global standing…Backing down from the Biden administration’s malignant and asinine demands for a humiliating Russian withdrawal from eastern Ukraine before peace talks can convene is a step Washington refuses to take. Yet it must be taken. The higher interest rates rise, and the more Washington spends at home and abroad to prosecute the war in Ukraine, the closer American society moves toward internal political and social turmoil. These are dangerous conditions for any republic.” Source: https://www.theamericanconservative.com

John Mearsheimer is a University of Chicago professor of international relations. His critique of US strategy dates the war against Russia as just ten years old – from the Kiev putsch of 2014.  He ignores the evidence of US strategy, military plans and covert operations to destroy Russia in Europe since 1945, and more recently, the Brzezinski-Carter plans of 1977-80, followed by the Team B plans of the Reagan Administration,  and then the Clinton plans for Russia.

Mearsheimer seems not to understand that all these plans have been understood by officials and voters alike as US victories. Instead, Mearsheimer declares that NATO expansion has been a mistake. He doesn’t believe the same of the preservation of US control of Europe, especially Germany. The current war he fails to see as “existential” for both sides. Perhaps university undergraduates in Chicago don’t know this.

Source: https://www.youtube.com/

Enough has already been reported on Seymour Hersh’s coverage of a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) version of the attack on the Nord Stream gas pipelines last September.  Without accepting any criticism or modification of his story, Hersh has continued repeating his original claims. The repetition is a Substack method for monetizing their products. According to the Substack presentations of Hersh’s work since his original Nord Stream report on February 8, his paid-up subscription has reached 113,000. At a fee average of between $5 to $10 per month, Hersh has earned revenues on his Nord Stream story of between $565,000 and $1.1 million. Less commission for Substack and minus production costs, Hersh has cleared between $200,000 and $600,000 for himself.

In the investigative journalism business, this is as exceptional as Biden’s success in waging the war Hersh is making money to investigate.   

But the likes scoring of each new piece by Hersh indicates that since February 8,reader interest has been dwindling.  As other well-known investigative journalists publishing on Substack have discovered, in order to sustain revenues they are obliged to keep printing novelties to draw new subscribers and  sustain the rate of renewals – that turns out to mean repeat material. It is the journalistic equivalent of a Ponzi scheme.  

“Biden and Scholz had an 80-minute meeting, with no aides present for much of the time. There have been no statements or written understandings made public since then by either government, but I was told by someone with access to diplomatic intelligence that there was a discussion of the pipeline exposé and, as a result, certain elements in the Central Intelligence Agency were asked to prepare a cover story in collaboration with German intelligence that would provide the American and German press with an alternative version for the destruction of Nord Stream 2. In the words of the intelligence community, the agency was “to pulse the system” in an effort to discount the claim that Biden had ordered the pipelines’ destruction.”  Source: https://seymourhersh.substack.com/
 Substack now claims that Hersh has more than 113,000 subscribers; the much smaller numbers recorded as article views and likes casts doubt on this number.

Of the two critics of the war in the public intellectual category, Daniel Ellsberg is the most hostile towards Russian policy, and the least well informed on what it is. Noam Chomsky is relatively better informed; both argue for US policy out of ignorance of Russian policy, and unrecognition of the indifference to both on the part of most Americans.

The New York Times’s valedictory interview with Ellsberg, qualifying the piece by an editorialist for the newspaper as “opinion”.  Source: https://www.nytimes.com/
 Ellsberg – “For 70 years, the U.S. has frequently made the kind of wrongful first-use threats of nuclear weapons that Putin is making now in Ukraine. We should never have done that, nor should Putin be doing it now. I’m worried that his monstrous threat of nuclear war to retain Russian control of Crimea is not a bluff. President Biden campaigned in 2020 on a promise to declare a policy of no first use of nuclear weapons. He should keep that promise, and the world should demand the same commitment from Putin.”

Video interview of Noam Chomsky of February 18, 2023.  “There have been real successes for the official policy of severely weakening Russia. As many commentators have discussed, for a fraction of its colossal military budget, the U.S., via Ukraine, is significantly degrading the military capacity of its sole adversary in this arena, not a small achievement. It’s a bonanza for major sectors of the U.S. economy, including fossil fuel and military industries” .   

The new attack on Putin with arrest warrants from the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Netherlands has begun with British prosecutor Karim Ahmad Khan and Polish judge Piotr Hofmanski.

For more than a year, Khan has been trying to frame indictments of Russian war crimes on allegations submitted to the ICC by the government in Kiev. Support for their allegations has come from the US and other NATO allies.   But the US, Russia and the Ukraine are not signatories of the Rome Statute establishing the ICC.  Notwithstanding, the court charter allows Khan and Hofmanski the authority to initiate cases from any source.  

Russia has reacted with a formal warning to the court against extending its jurisdiction unlawfully. “The Court cannot entertain a claim, even at a provisional measures stage, without first ascertaining that it has jurisdiction over it. As the Court has repeatedly stated, ‘one of the fundamental principles of its Statute is that it cannot decide a dispute between States without the consent of those States to its jurisdiction.’”  

On March 16, 2022, Khan announced publicly “there is a reasonable basis to believe that both alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed in Ukraine in relation to the events already  assessed during the preliminary examination by the Office. Given the expansion of the conflict in recent days, it is my intention that this investigation will also encompass any new alleged crimes falling within the jurisdiction of my Office that are committed by any party to the conflict on any part of the territory of Ukraine.”    After twelve months of  this “investigation”, there was Khan’s announcement of arrest warrants last week.

Khan has charged and Hofmanski has endorsed the allegation of war crimes against children for the “unlawful deportation” and “unlawful transfer” of children “from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation (under articles 8(2)(a)(vii) and 8(2)(b)(viii) of the Rome Statute).” The allegations were made in a press release  by Khan and a video clip  by Hofmanski on March 17.

Left to right: Karim Ahmad Khan; his brother Imran Ahmad Khan; Pyotr Holfmanski. The indictment, trial and conviction of Imran Khan for sexual assualt of a 15-year old boy in 2008 has been reported here.   Imran Khan was sent to prison for 18 months in May 2022, and then released on early probation on February 22, 2023; he had served half his sentence.   On the same day, February 22, 2023,  Khan filed his formal application for the court arrest warrants on child war crime offences against President Putin and the Russian  Commissioner for children’s Rights, Maria Lvova-Belova.  

The prosecutor, judge,  and court have so far failed to produce the formal indictment. They have not identified the number and names of the children allegedly involved or their families; the location of the alleged offences in what Hofmanski called “Ukrainian occupied territories”;  or the source of their evidence linking Putin and Lvova-Belova to the children.  Hofmanski claimed “the contents of the warrants are secret in order to protect [the] victims” despite his acknowledgement that the children are now living in Russia.  

The wording of the Rome Statute, setting out the elements of the newly alleged crimes, can be read here.  Khan and Hofmanski have ignored the requirement in the statute of the “existence of an armed conflict”: that began in the Donbass with Ukrainian military attacks on children’s facilities eight years before the alleged Russian offences.

The secrecy of the new ICC action is in contrast with the public endorsement by the US State Department and Jill Biden, wife of the US President, of a Ukrainian woman, Yulia Payevska,  accused by the Russian authorities and jailed for kidnapping two children and killing their parents during the siege of the Azovstal plant in Mariupol. The US state media version of Payevska’s case can be read here.  On  the US Government award to Payevska on March 6. 2023,  click to read the State Department release  and the Ukrainian government endorsement of her actions.   

Also in direct contrast to the claims of Khan and Hofmanski, the  German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier directly participated in the removal to Germany of 120 Jewish orphans from the Mishpacha [“Family”] Orphanage in Odessa   in March 2022, shortly after the start of the special military operation.

President Steinmeier (centre) at the Jewish Chabad organization function celebrating the removal of the children from Odesa to Berlin on March 7. Click to read more.  

Listen now to the broadcast:

Source: https://tntradiolive.podbean.com/

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