[Zman, a blogger and podcaster, gives a good rundown on the history of the (((neocons))) who are behind the Ukraine-Russia war and how their ethnic hatred of Russia goes way back.
The Z Blog
A Ukraine Primer
Jan 13, 2023
Click here for the video:
A Ukraine Primer
January 13th, 2023
The Z Blog
• Neoconservatives • Kaganites – Post-Cold War Neocons • Russophobia • Ukraine War • It Is Complicated
galicia; neocons; russia; ukraine
Welcome to episode 260 of Z Blog Power Hour. I am host and proprietor of the Zblog, which can be found at the zman.com.
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All right, well going to do something kind of topical this week, but it’s a single topic, and that is Ukraine. I haven’t done a whole heck of a lot recently on Ukraine. I did a post this week Behind the Green Door and a post on the regular site, and I also talked about it on the Sunday show. And I mentioned that if people wanted me to do more on Ukraine, that might be a good idea. I don’t know. Because people have actually recommended that maybe I put together something a little more comprehensive that they could send to one of their conservative friends.
Because if you’re trying to understand what in the world’s happening in Ukraine by reading the mainstream press in the United States or watching any of these cable chat shows, or even listening to talk radio, conservative talk radio, you’re going to come away with a completely different impression than what is reality. And it’s true. If you read the Western press in general, this is not unique to America. In fact, there’s at least some realism in the Western or the American media. In Britain, they’re completely over the moon. I mean, they report stuff that’s completely bonkers! They probably have reported that Putin is ready to die ten times last year. Any day now, he’s going to die.
And of course, they’re the ones who cooked up all these crazy stories about the Ghost of Kiev, and about how some grandfather used an old shotgun to shoot down a whole bunch of Russian jets, that kind of stuff.
And the rest of the Western media is just as bad. But occasionally you’ll see something sneak through, but you really got to look for it.
So unless you’re really good at hunting down alternative news sites, you’re going to come away with a very different view, or an understanding, of what’s happening than what is actually happening. Your understanding of things is not going to be squared with reality.
And then, of course, you have the problem of people associated with outsider politics who’ve got all kinds of crackpot ideas of what’s really happening. You have that old Left, the old fashioned Left, anti-war guys. They’re all sure that it’s all these secret players, plotting for monetary reasons, the military industrial complex, and a Deep State and all that jazz. You have some of that on our side too.
But you also have people who are promoting whatever their hobby horse thing is. You see this with a lot of these kind of Neo-nationalists, for lack of a better word, who are trying to paint Putin is this imperial wizard who for no reason at all is trying to invade this plucky little country and Zelensky is this wonderful nationalist who’s fighting. I mean, it’s all nonsense. And that really clouds the picture because these people do make a lot of noise on all sides of it.
So anyway, the idea came to me that a good show would be sort of giving a very general understanding of what’s going on in Ukraine, but also to provide the necessary background. The background material goes back a long way, to understand what this is really about. Because that’s really, I think, the big problem that a lot of people on our side have is that they get kind of bogged down in the minutiae, and don’t see the larger picture. And there is a larger picture here and it’s an important larger picture that I think people in our kind of politics really need to have a good grounding in.
They need to understand that this is what we’re seeing here is just one chapter and a much longer story.
So with that in mind, I thought I’d kind of get into the background. And the best place to do that is to actually start at the beginning. And the beginning in this case is the middle of the last century.
And that starts with the neocons. Now, neocon and neoconservitism has become pretty much an epithet in our kind of politics, but it’s a term that gets abused a lot. It’s become almost a synonym for globalist, internationalist, post-nationalists, neoliberal. And you hear a lot of Europeans do this.
I mentioned the Duran guys a little earlier, and they fall into this trap. They talk about “English neoconservatives” or “European neoconservatives”, and there’s no such thing. Neoconservatism is a peculiar thing to America. And that’s why it’s important to kind of have a grounding in this.
Back in the middle of the last century, a group of jewish intellectuals started looking around at the Left, because pretty much there wasn’t really a Right at the end of the Second World War. The old conservative movement had withered away because it wasn’t political. It didn’t really have a political arm. It was anti-politics. They thought government should be stripped down to the barest, should have very little involvement in people’s lives.
And of course, the Second World War and the Great Depression resulted in this massive expansion of the government led by the New Deal progressives. And so conservatism didn’t have a place. There was no way to roll this back.
And so in the middle of the last century you started getting this sort of new conservatism brewing up. But most everyone who was an intellectual was on the Left, in Left-wing politics of some sort. They might be a new Dealer, they might be a Communist, they might be a Trotskyite, or some kind of radical politics. But everyone was in that group. But it started to change because a group of jewish intellectuals started looking around and getting concerned about what they saw happening with the American Left.
And some of the things they didn’t like were pretty practical. They didn’t like the collapse of the inner cities. That was already starting to happen in the 60s. They saw that the schools were starting to come apart. Things like garbage collection and policing were starting to fail. Of course crime was getting out of control. Just general corruption all over the, you know, like places like New York or Boston and Philadelphia, you know, big cities were becoming ungovernable, it seemed.
And it was because the the Left-wing people who were running these cities were indulging in all kinds of whackadoodle ideas, like letting all the prisoners out of jail. But they also got really into heavy duty racial politics. And they were also becoming increasingly anti-semitic. They were anti-Israel.
People forget Israel didn’t exist as a country, as a modern country until 1948. And when it was born well, a lot of the American Left didn’t like it because they looked at Israel and said:
“Wait a second! This country being born out of nothing and it immediately went to war with all of its Arab neighbors! Kind of looks like a bunch of colonialists! It looks like the same problem that the Africans had, or other Arab countries have had with European colonialism.”
And so there was a different kind of anti-semitism, more anti-Israel, anti-zionist.
And there was also a fair amount of friendliness with the Soviet Union. And this became really the central issue for the neocons, because they were anti-Russian. They weren’t anti-Soviet or anti-communists. The charge against the neocons for the longest time was that they were Trotskyites. In other words, much like in the old Soviet Union they were just a different branch of the Communists.
I think a lot of it was fair, but they looked at these problems and they made the break with the Left. The actual term “Neo-conservatism” was originally was an epithet used by Left-wingers. I forgot, it was some Marxist guy, I forget his name anymore. He coined a term “neo-conservative” as a way of mocking them.:
“Ah, all these guys have suddenly discovered their conservatism!”
Well, the neocons, or before they were neocons, they decided to embrace the term and took ownership of it. They owned the insult. And they wound up forging an alliance with the emerging Buckley Conservatives.
And there was a thing called Fusionism, where they decided to meld anti-Russian, anti-Soviet, foreign policy, a real hostility to the Soviets, with traditional sort of cultural conservatism, but also libertarian economics. There was a guy I forget what his name is. Frank Meyer, that’s it! He’s the one to come up with this Fusionist idea.
So you have all these jewish intellectuals who left the Left progressive politics and formed this alliance with Conservatives like Bill Buckley.
Now, the main thing they brought to the party was the intellectual arguments against Communism, Marxism, and the Soviet Union. These guys were super hawkish! But their hawkishness against the Soviets had less to do with economics, and a lot more to do with old ethnic identities.
Because if you look at the background of all these guys, they all came out of places that used to be called the Pale of Settlement, where Eastern European jews settled into parts of Europe, where Ukraine is, Poland, Belarus. Of course, Russia at the time, it was the Russian Empire, went into the Baltics. This is where these people came from. Their parents came in the beginning of the 20th century, came from these areas. And that’s a different breed of cat than the German jews who came to the United States really in the 19th century.
And this is something that Paul Gottfried, there used to be a great video of him giving a talk about this. But Paul Gottfried talked about this as that there’s a great divide within the jewish diaspora in the United States between the old German jews and these Pale of Settlement jews.
Steve Sailer has talked about the fact that this crackpot idea that jews faced this terrible discrimination when they came to the United States, they weren’t allowed to join golf clubs, or go to Ivy League colleges, or that kind of stuff, is clearly untrue.
But what really happened was that you had these old German jewish golf clubs that were prominent. They hosted PGA events like Inwood Country Club back in 1904 or 1908, something like that. And they didn’t want these Pale of Settlement jews in. They didn’t like them. They looked down on those guys. They were peasant jews.
So there was this real divide within the jewish diaspora in the United States. And all these neocons have their roots in that Eastern European side, the peasant jews. Norman Podhoretz. His family came from Galicia. Now, why is that important? That’s going to be more important as we go along here. But that’s a part of what is now Ukraine.
Irving Kristol, another godfather of Neo-conservatism, his parents came from Eastern Europe, from the Pale of Settlement. And you see this all across the board. And exists to this day. If you look at these neocons, you start digging around in family history, it’s almost always somewhere Ukraine, maybe Latvia, or Lithuania, or Poland, but most of them are in that area.
There’s a woman named Anne Applebaum who writes really just vitriolic anti-Russian stuff for The Atlantic. Her husband is a Polish diplomat. Her family comes from that part of the world.
And that part of the world has a lot of ethnic issues! And I’ll get into this a little bit later. But what really drove the original neocons. The real root motivation of them was this problem they saw with the American Left cozying up to the Russians during the Cold War. They didn’t like that because they’re anti-Russian. Again, they weren’t anti-communist. They weren’t anti-radical. If you look at the rest of their politics, it’s pretty generic Left-wing politics, and some of its actually quite radical. And they’re very open to some of the most disgusting sorts of things, even to this day. Jonah Goldberg, gosh, 15, 20 years ago, wrote this conservative case for gay marriage. Well, we’ve seen this played out over and over again.
So when it came to economics and cultural items, they were pretty wishy-washy. But when it came to opposing the Soviet Union, particularly the Russians, well, they did not have any compromise in their heart at all. And look, during the Cold War, that didn’t matter. This gave conservatism something. It gave them an important thing to rally around. They were going to be the hawks facing off against the big, bad Russians. They were going to oppose the bear. It was the eagle versus the bear!
And so no one really cared about the fact that these guys were primarily motivated by just an absolute hatred of Russians, because it worked. It was fine. The Cold War, you can say a lot of things about it, but there’s no question that the world is a better place with Communism having collapsed and with the United States having led the charge opposing Communism. There’s no getting around that.
So no one really cared about these guys being Russophobes, because everybody was a Russophobe! Look, you know, I came of age in the 1980s, and being opposed to the Russians was just every and everybody did this. I mean, they were always the bad guys. There was viewed as the bad guys.
There was a movie I saw, I was a teenager, it was called Red Dawn, and it was about this scenario where the Soviet Union conquers the United States and this plucky group of teenagers fights the Soviets in a guerrilla war. I mean, that’s the kind of sort of silly and ridiculous sort of crap that was popular during the Cold War, though. It just happened. You can see all these old Cold War movies and they all have this sort of anti-Russian. The Russians are both smart and stupid! They’re both devilish and naive. They’re the perfect villain.
So the neocons could hide in that they could hide in this general sense that as Americans and as Westerners and as freedom loving people, we oppose the Russians. And no one noticed their over the top, sort of drooling at the mouth hatred of Russian people, and Russian culture, and Russian society. But it was always there.
And so that’s really an important thing to understand, is that what we think of as neocons are almost entirely a negative identity built around hatred of Russian people!
Now, that brings us to the post Cold War era. One of the things that if you were alive back then you would remember is that the Left was cackling themselves silly, saying:
“Oh my goodness, what do Conservatives have now that there’s no longer a Soviet Union? There was no longer the threat of communism? What are Conservatives going to do when they can’t point to it and justify all their other policies?”
Because in large part that was true. All of the economic arguments in favor of cutting taxes and cutting regulation and that kind of stuff was all in furtherance of the Cold War.:
“Hey, we need a strong economy because we need to spend a bunch of money on space guns and missiles and all the other stuff!”
And of course, the cultural stuff is that:
“Hey, look, the Communists are anti-family. The communists are anti-religion. The Communist put up with these kinds of things or promote these kinds of ideas. You don’t want to be a Communist!”
Family values was considered an antidote to Communism. And now all of a sudden you remove Communism. Well, what do you have? What’s the justification for all these things?
And I remember very clearly how self-satisfied Lefty was with this stuff. Of course they had the same problem. The entire political culture of the country had been built up around opposition to the Cold War. I mean, it lasted a long time. You think about it from the 1950s through the 1980s. So you’re talking about 40 years. That’s a couple of generations.
So the neocons did have a problem, but the entire political class had a problem. The American Left went through this great transformation as well, where they really couldn’t obviously use Marxism or Communism as a justification for anything because it’d been disgraced at this point. So they went looking around for something new, and that’s how you got the New Democrats, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, these people out of the Democratic Leadership Council. And neoliberalism was largely born out of those efforts to kind of come up with a new reason to exist.
For the neocons, it was a little different though, because they were extremely triumphant. They assumed that after the collapse of the Soviet Union that they would go in with their friends at Wall Street and just carve up the old Russian Empire, the old Soviet Empire, and break it up into pieces and turn it into nothing but an area to extract natural resources.
And that was really what was happening. I mean, all of these Western firms went into Russia in the 1990s just stealing everything that wasn’t nailed down. But that’s also where we got this “End of History” stuff, okay? All the great ideological wars were over. Liberal democracy is the winner. Everyone’s going to be a liberal Democrat and we’re going to get rid of nations. We can get rid of all these problems.
It gets back to a very old Marxist idea, and that is once all the moral problems are solved. There are no more politics. You don’t need politics anymore. And that really is what this whole New World Order business, the whole World Economic Forum. And of course the neocons completely embrace this idea that liberal democracy is triumphant and the entire world will now be changed into liberal democracy, broken up into small pieces. You won’t have nations, you won’t have a need for that you won’t have a need for politics. You’ll just have this sort of ruling class that takes care of everything.
Well, that didn’t really work out that way. It didn’t exactly happen that way. Russia finally regained itself in the late 90s, early 2000s, and it started to reform itself. But Neo-conservatism also reacted to this. Robert Kagan, who runs what I call the “Kagan Cult”, but he’s an important figure. He’s a very important neocon. His wife, Victoria Nuland, is the woman who’s running Ukraine policy for Biden. She ran Ukraine policy under Obama.
And there’s tons of these people who are associated with the Kagan clan that are all over the place. Jennifer Rubin. There’s Max Boot. There’s Brett Stevens, of course Irving, Bill Kristol, Irving Kristol is his father. You got the people at Commentary magazine. These guys are all hooked into each other. American Enterprise Institute. There’s parts of Heritage that are hooked into these guys.
And they’ve kind of come to imagine this great new conflict that because they were unable to break up Russia into the little parts after the end of the Cold War, they conjured this new great conflict. And what it is, is a version of the Peloponnesian war. Robert Kagan’s father was considered a great historian, although it’s probably overrated, but his specialty was the Peloponnesian war. And that of course, is the fight between the Spartans, who led the Peloponnesian league versus the Athenians who ran the Delian league.
And they’re telling America is now the new Athens, right? This new Athens that is going to spread liberal democracy around the world and enlighten everyone. And unlike the old Peloponnesian War, the original Peloponnesian War, where the Athenians lost and they were conquered by the Spartans, in the telling, that has kind of dominated the minds of these Neo-Conservatives, or Kaganites, as I call them, they came to believe that the old Cold War struggle was between Russia that was Sparta, and America was Athens. And the Athenians won this time! They didn’t get conquered by the bad guys, they beat the bad guys.
And this new age that was going to erupt after the end of the Cold War was going to be the new Athens, spreading these ideas, spreading these cultural components, spreading it all over the world. And, and if you look, America for the last 30 years, since the end of the Cold War, has invested enormous amounts of money in trying to spread cultural stuff everywhere! Everywhere you can find.
And of course we see this every year when well, it’s actually multiple times a year now where they have some sort of homosexual pride thing. All the embassies got rainbow flags or trans flags now, and they pump out all this literature and material and ship it all over the place. And of course, all the cultural items, movies, TV shows that gets shipped all over the world. And it’s all about spreading these ideas of the new Athens.
Well, the problem with that is that the old Russia didn’t actually go away. The Soviet Union collapsed, but Russia had a very difficult time, an extremely difficult time for about ten years, until they finally started to getting their footing again. And that’s what’s happened with Putin and his regime. Russia’s finally kind of found it’s balance again.
And so all these guys in this Kaganite cult, they now look at this as, all right, this is the new Peloponnesian War again. We’re going to update our calendar. The old Peloponnesian War? Well, yeah, okay. There was an interregnum there, because in the real Peloponnesian War, there was it was actually fighting and then a break and then fighting again. So they’re adaptable. They’ve adapted their worldview.
And so now they look at Russia as being the source of all problems in the world, and that the fundamental reason that America exists, is to defeat Russia! That’s what they preach. That’s what they talk about. And you see this with Victoria Nuland. She’s obsessed with Ukraine! And that she was obsessed with Belarus, and, of course, now obsessed with Russia.
All of these people are all telling these fantastical tales about how terrible Russia is, and how Putin is a dictator and everything else. Because for them, the reason for them to exist as a movement is to oppose Russia. We’re kind of back to where their parents and grandparents were. And instead of being masking it with being opposed to communism, now it’s being opposition to Russian imperialism, or Russian aggression.
And this is why all of these guys hate Trump with an absolute passion. It’s a funny thing, back in the, say, the Bush years, when a lot of people, a lot of Republican voters, a lot of Conservatives, they complained about the far Left activism of all these Bush people. I mean, people forget that it wasn’t just the endless wars that they created. They expanded government all over the place. The EPA, Department of Education. I mean, they expanded government faster than at any period, even faster than under LBJ. Bush was just far-Lefty when it came to government and domestic spending and domestic programs. And of course, he gave us the Department of Homeland Security, which has been a source of mayhem for two decades now.
But when people complained about this, all those neocons said:
“Oh, you just got to suck it up. I mean, it could be worse. It could be a Lefty!”
They have all these arguments. But then when Trump came along in 2016, all of a sudden:
“No! No! There could be no compromise, there’s no sucking it up or anything else!”
They hated Trump with a passion. And the reason they hated Trump was for two reasons. One, he went directly at the Bush people for all these forever wars, Afghanistan and Iraq. He talked about that. And that of course, hit home because that was the neocon project, and I’ll get into this a little bit later, but that let them know that:
“Hey, wait a second, this guy, he’s not going to be falling for our act!”
But the bigger problem, though, is that he reminded them of people like Pat Buchanan, and Ross Perot, and all the paleocons guys like Sam Francis, and Paul Gottfried, and Joe Sobran. And there’s a bunch of others, who back in the 70s and 80s, well, they were wise to what these neocons were really about. And in fact, Paul Gottfried came up with the term “Paleo-conservatism”. He coined the term in response to the neocons, embracing the term “neocon”..
And they [neocons] thought they flushed all these guys out of the Republican Party and out of conservative politics back during the early 1990s. They were sure that they would never have to deal with these kind of people again. And here comes Trump talking about shutting down the border, the deal cons are for open borders, talking about being tough on trade. Neocons don’t care about that.
And of course, he was talking about being, you know, tough on these military interventions, getting this stuff done and getting their troops home. And that they hated.
And they also hated the fact that he, he said something during the campaign that really got them upset. And that is he was prepared to have a reproachment with the Russians to come up with some sort of deal.
And I’ve often thought that the reason that the Hillary Clinton campaign came up with this Russian collusion hoax stuff was they knew it would set the neocons off. These people were smart. They’re very shrewd inside Washington. People do know about the Kagan cult and just how deranged these people are, but they’re afraid of them because they have real power. So they tiptoe around them.
And look, if you’re a Left-wing person, you’re a neoliberal person, you’re in the Clinton camp, you don’t really care about the forever wars. You’re getting your beak wet, you get some money out of it. Let them have their fun. So there’s a bit of that as well.
So I think they fed this Russian collusion hoax, because they could have used China. That would have been an easy one to use. They could have used Israel, or Saudi Arabia. They could have used another country. But they picked Russia, I think, because they knew it would set the neocons off. And it did. They still talk about this. If you go to the Bulwark [sp] or the Dispatch, they’re still talking about Trump and Russia. They just can’t shut up about it.
And that’s because who they are is entirely built around this hatred for the Russians. And that’s who they are, and that’s what they morphed into. That’s what Neo-conservatism really became as this long term project at the end of the Cold War to finish the job, to finally finish off the Russians and break up Russia and turn it into the same thing they’re turning the rest of the West into.
And this is why NATO still exists. Again, if you’re my age or older, maybe a little younger than me, you’ll probably remember that at the end of the Cold War, a lot of serious people said, :
“Well, what do we need NATO for? The whole point of NATO, the North American Treaty Organization, was to organize Western militaries to confront the Warsaw Pact!”
Well, all of a sudden, the Warsaw Pact doesn’t exist anymore. Poland and Czechoslovakia, of course, they broke up into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Hungary, the Baltic states. Of course, Ukraine became it’s own country, became independent. Belarus became independent. You had this end of the Warsaw Pact. It literally came to an end. What was the point of having an alternative to that if that thing didn’t exist?
But it continued on, because, again, the neocons began to evolve away from just being Cold Warriors, to being anti-Russian. And that’s why they pushed so hard for NATO expansion. There was never any reason to be adding countries to NATO. I mean, again, the whole purpose of NATO was to defend the West against a potential invasion of Soviet Russia. But the Soviet Union was gone. The Russians were in no capacity to invade anyone. That was rather clear. They were broke! So what in the world was NATO for? And why in the world would you be expanding NATO? And that’s what happened, though.
Adding Poland and Hungary to NATO was done deliberately, because what the neocons looked at and started to understand is that they needed to finish the job, and so they needed to continue to add all these territories around Russia in order to surround Russia. And that gets into why the neocons have always been, until recently, in favor of strong relations with China. We moved all our industry to China. We invest heavily in our politics and our domestic institutions, like educational institutions, and get involved in our tech companies. China and the United States, these kinds of entanglements are really completely unusual, the way in which the Chinese got in bed, or the American elites got in bed with the Chinese.
But what were the neocons looking at? Well, they look at China having this massive border with Russia. There’s been a long term hostility between the Russians and the Chinese, and went back a long way. And so, hey, having China in the Western camp is good, because that’s bad for Russia. That’s one of those pieces on their border. And, of course, NATO expansion into these old Eastern countries Poland, Czech Republic, and so forth, that puts NATO right there on the border.
The whole scheme was to try and chip away at the Russians what the neocons, these Kaganites, think of as the new Russian Empire, the new Spartan League! And that’s what this has all been about. So they started with NATO expansion, but they didn’t stop there. It wasn’t just about adding countries as allies.
A lot of people on our side have been convinced for a long time. And honestly, I used to think this way too, that the Iraq war and the invasion and the occupation and, of course Afghanistan, was about Israel. And not really, I don’t think that it was. I think in retrospect we have to look at it and say, :
“No, it was always about Russia.”
Because Iraq was a long time client of the Russians. Back during the Cold War, Russians sold them tanks, howitzers, all the weapons of war. They supported Saddam Hussein. They also supported Syria. After the Iranian revolution, they were in bed with the Iranians. The Russians, the Soviets, they weren’t stupid. They understood how the world worked and they were always trying to add allies. I mean, that’s just how the Cold War operated.
But Iraq was a long time ally of the Soviets. And so therefore breaking them up, destroying Iraq, was always looked at, I think, from the neocon perspective as another bit of damage done to the Russians. If you can damage their allies, you damage the Russians.
And when you stop and think about it, it actually makes sense in that context because one of the things that I remember back during the Bush years, 20 years ago now, is that it never made any sense the way in which the Bush people were waging war in Iraq. It would have been a lot easier to find somebody within Saddam Hussein’s circle to kill him and take over. And he would be a pro-American boss of Iraq. That would make sense. You wouldn’t break the country up. You wouldn’t put at risk the entire region. You wouldn’t destroy Iraq in general. You would keep it as intact as possible. You would just put a new guy in charge.
And I remember having these conversations with people back then and I thought that was what would happen, except it would be the most logical thing. But that’s not what happened. Instead there was this de-Bathification, they called it, where they’re going to get rid of all the Bathists.
What did they really mean by these Bathists? Well, these were guys who were for the most part pro-Russian! These were guys who were pro-Soviet. They believed that they organized their army around Russian designs. They had good relations with the Russians. So they wanted to get rid of all of these guys and replace them with new guys. Now the mistake in their logic was that the alternative were people who were pro-Iran and Russia now at the time had good relations with Iran, had developed good relations starting in the 70s.
But it was this, you know, neocon obsession with destroying Russia and Russian assets that led them to try and destroy Iraq. Because, you know, you remember Joe Biden at one point started talking about, well, hey, maybe we break up Iraq into three countries. You have a southern piece, a central piece, and a northern piece. That’s the kind of talk that was going around in Washington. So clearly it was not about trying to end Saddam’s nuclear weapons program or his Weapons Of Mass Destruction, which they never found.
But what was it really up to here? Well, first of all, Iraq was a Russian client. So you destroy Iraq, and then you can go into Iran. That was their plan. Remember John McCain? They used to do that:
“Bomb! Bomb! Bomb, Iran!”
Stuff. You have to be my age or older to remember that. But that was part of it.
But the other part, of course, was to attack Syria, because what’s really going on here is that you have this massive gas fields in Iran and Iraq, and the southern part there. And if you could get control of those gas fields, you can then build pipelines. And the Saudis would love to be able to build gas pipelines. And they were investing money in this. The Saudis were involved in this as well, because they looked at it and said:
“You know what, there’s an opportunity for us to capture another piece of the energy market.”
Well, you build these gas pipelines up north into Syria, because now you control Syria. Well, guess what? You can now start selling gas into Europe, and that cuts into Russia’s ability to sell energy to the Europeans. So this Iraq war, the planned Iran war, which never got going, although they gave it a lot of effort. And, of course, the disruption in Syria. This was as much about trying to end the ability of the Russians to control the energy market into Europe, because they largely have. Even with all these sanctions, the Europeans are still buying enormous amounts of energy from the Russians. Because it’s cheap.
I mean, you can buy [word unclear] crude oil at probably $0.60 on a dollar compared to US crude, or Saudi crude. I mean, it’s just cheap. They got tons of it. And that’s, of course, natural gas, these pipelines, it’s extremely cheap energy, but it profits Russia, and therefore the neocons weren’t to break this stuff up.
And that gets into this whole Syria business. Syria has been an ongoing conflict for about ten years now. When we have troops in Syria, Trump tried to pull them out and the neocons blocked them at every turn. Well, the Turks were encouraged by the United States try and grab a piece of Syria, to try and destabilize Syria. They were told they would get some of these energy fields, which are now currently occupied by American troops, by the way.
And if you overthrow Assad, then all of a sudden we have a friendly government in Syria. The Turks are in NATO. They’re friendly with Washington. The Turks will get some money out of it. And of course, this further damages Russia’s ability to control energy markets and also damages their relationships in the region. Losing this important partner would have been a big blow to them.
Well, the Russians actually came in and saved the Assad regime. They helped destroy ISIS, which the United States had created to try and overthrow the Syrians. And of course, now the the Turks and the Syrians are making a peace deal. The Turks are semi in bed with the Russians. The Syrians, of course, are in bed with the Russians.
But this whole plan, this whole idea was about trying to destabilize Russia by nibbling away at its alliances in the Middle East. And you’ll note that a few years ago, there was a coup attempt which was launched by the CIA out of the Incirlik Air Base, where we keep nuclear weapons in Turkey. We actually have a nuclear arsenal in Turkey that we maintain, and it goes back to the 1960s.
Well, the CIA launched this coup against Erdogan and tried to overthrow him. Now, the reason they did this is that Erdogan changed his mind about the war in Syria. He didn’t want to continue participating in this war. It wasn’t in his best interest. So our government, our neocons, decided, :
“Well, we need to send him a message!”
And they almost pulled it off, although, again, the Russians stepped in and helped Erdogan preserve his power.
And so all this stuff goes back to the Bush years. All this involvement in Afghanistan, in Syria, in Iraq, in Iran. Everyone has assumed that this has always been about Israel. And yeah, there’s some of that is there, but in reality, it’s always been about this larger project of destroying Russia! That’s what these guys are about.
And it’s not just in the Middle East. They have been stirring up trouble in Azerbaijan and Armenia. These are two places, or two people, that can’t stand each other. And it’s weird. Armenia, if you look at their national symbol, is Mount Ararat, which actually exists now in Azerbaijan. So obviously they have a hatred there because of that. There’s a lot of other things going on there. But the United States is constantly trying to stir trouble here.
They’ve been trying to stir up trouble in other parts of the Caucasus. Why is this? Well, there’s a Rand paper that’s been kicking around for a number of years that said that if you start causing trouble in the Caucasus, that’s going to force the Russians to put resources in to try and calm these areas down.
The Chechen war, that was another probably CIA finance, no one really knows for sure, but the Russians had to invest an enormous amount of money and resources to try and tamp that down, which they eventually did. But that’s what this whole plan is about the stuff in the Middle East is a part of the stuff going on in the Caucasus.
Back in the Bush years, they tried to they actually talked about adding Georgia to NATO, which is completely ridiculous given if you look at a map, they’re nowhere near the North Atlantic. But they wanted to try and add Georgia because that would, again, would put more pressure on Russia. So they actually fostered this. Georgia, South Ossetia war did go well for the Georgians. The Russians came in and helped the South Ossetians, and that ended Georgia’s effort to join NATO..
Now, I understand that I’ve read an awful bunch of different stuff here, and it kind of sounds like a conspiracy theory, but you can look all this stuff up! You know, the business between the Turks and the Syrians and the effort to overthrow Erdogan. You can find us online. Certainly the the Georgia, south Osetian war. Again, you can look this up online. And we all know what happened in Iraq. I think my interpretation of the Iraq war and subsequent events in the Middle East, that’s debatable. I think some people could come back and say:
“No, no, no, it really was about Israel.”
And because, look, a lot of the neocons actually said this. Tucker Carlson, in his book, talked about a conversation he had with Bill Kristol, and Bill Kristol telling him that the war in Iraq was really about securing the interest of Israel. Now, most likely, Bill Kristol was lying to him because Bill Kristol lies all the time. You can’t stop himself. But still, I mean, I think you could make an argument either way. Look, it could be both. They could have been looking at both, looking at it as a win-win. But even if you have some skepticism on that, now we get into the whole color revolution business.
And these were a series of revolts that just magically sort of happened all in places that were either part of the former Soviet Union or allies of Russia and the former Soviet Union. There’s never been a color revolution in a country that supposedly has democracy like South America or something like that. They’re not calling what’s happening in Brazil right now a “color revolution” or what’s happening in Peru a color revolution. All these color revolutions that get promoted by the media are always in these places that are somehow or other attached to Russia.
And the most famous of which, of course, is the overthrow of the democratically elected government in Ukraine in 2014. The United States, Government overthrew the government in Ukraine. And we know this because we have on tape Victoria Nuland, when she was there during this “Maidan Revolution”, they called it. This was when all Ukraine supposedly spontaneously decided to overthrow the government. They all show up in Maidan Square. If you ever see a picture of it. That’s a big statue, and it was a cool thing to look at, for sure. The media did a really good job presenting it, or at least Western media did.
But she got caught on tape talking about how the American government was helping to overthrow the Ukrainian government. And she also said some rather unpleasant things about Europeans in general.
This is a woman who has a long history of actually hating European people. She’s talked about this openly. Anyway, she was caught on tape, and that tape was released into German media. So we know that the United States government did this.
But they also recently, a few years ago, tried to overthrow the Belarus government. Again, another color revolution. They had all these people out in the streets, and government had to crack down on it. They tried to color revolution the Russians, Putin, they had this guy, forget his name is. He’s in prison now. But the CIA and the NSA and all the usual suspects were involved in trying to generate this supposedly populist movement that was anti-Putin, to overthrow the Russian government.
And again, this is an easy one, because the people who are in this Kagan cult, they’re constantly talking about this now. They’ve come out of the closet and said:
“Yeah, they want to overthrow Putin. They want to overthrow the regime in Beijing.”
They even hinted that they might want to overthrow the Indian government.
They’ve talked about trying to overthrow what the heck is, MBS, the guy who runs Saudi Arabia?
This whole idea of using color revolutions and overthrowing governments you don’t like has become a part of the toolkit of the American government, American foreign policy, which is entirely controlled by the Kagan cult.
And that’s why we are in Ukraine! That’s the reason that we’re at this point, we have this huge war going on. Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed and wounded, millions of people fleeing it’s because of this long term project that really goes back to the middle of the last century. It goes back middle probably the 17th century, but goes back a very long way. And it’s all about this Kagan cult, these neoconservatives, whatever you want to call them, who run American foreign policy, who are absolutely obsessed with destroying Russia and breaking it up into pieces!
So what happened after they overthrew the Ukrainian government and installed this new government, is the Russians took advantage of the situation. Because a lot of the Russian speaking areas decided this was their opportunity to break away from Ukraine. They never wanted to be a part of Ukraine.
People forget that Ukraine really only existed since 1991, I think. And Ukraine was always a part of the Russian Empire. Sometimes it was parts of it were part of the Polish-Lithuanian empire. I mean, Ukraine is a country really hasn’t existed for very long at all. And of course, demographically, you have this big Russian speaking population in the east and in the south. But you also have Hungarians, you have Poles, you have what they have Ruthenians, you’ve got Greeks.
And of course, Odessa was full jews, but throughout the Soviet Union, during the Soviet Union, Odessa was largely a jewish city or mostly run by jews. And it was the area where a lot of the black market in the Soviet Union actually existed, because it was obviously a port. And and like in the United States, you have Little Odessa that is supposedly all these Russian gangsters. Well, they’re not Russian. They’re jewish gangsters. Little Odessa is run by jewish gangsters.
But anyway, so you have all these different tribes of people in this country called Ukraine. Well, when the United States overthrew the government, all of a sudden the Russian speaking areas in Luhansk and Donetz said:
“Well, we’re going to break off. We either want to join the Russia or we want to be independent.”
The Crimea, of course, was a Russian speaking area, and the Russians understood that there was an opportunity for them to seize this vital area. This area of the Crimea has always been vitally important to the Russians. So they took Crimea.
And that has been the beginning of this war. That’s really where you want to date the start of it, it was 2014.
Now, because things started going sideways for the United States and NATO allies, with the Russians taking the Crimea, they came up with this thing called the Minsk Accord. So it was this set of agreements that would allow the two Donbas Republics to kind of have a cooling off period, to end the civil war that had broken out there. And also to kind of set the groundwork for future negotiations.
Now, about six months ago, Angela Merkel, who used to be the prime minister, I don’t know, the “Hitler” of Germany, she came out, she’s in retirement now. She says:
“Oh, well, I brokered the Minsk Accord just to buy the Ukrainians time. We never actually intended to follow through with anything.”
Which is what happened. They broke all these agreements with the Russians. And we just had some recent confirmation of this. You not only have Merkel saying this, but you have this American Marine General in Pacific. He actually comes out and says, they’re organizing, they’re putting the preparations in place for a war with China. And one of his comments was:
“Why have we achieved the level of success we achieved in Ukraine? A big part of that has been because after Russian aggression in 2014 and, 20015, we earnestly got after preparing for future conflict. Training for the Ukrainians, pre positioning of supplies, identification of sites from which we could operate, support, sustain operations. We call that ‘setting the theater’, and we are ‘setting the theater’ in Japan, and in the Philippines, and in other locations.”
In other words, after they overthrew the government in 2014, they went about setting up and starting preparing the Ukrainians for war with Russia. And the Minsk Agreements were all about buying time so that the US military and NATO forces could go in there and help train up the Ukrainians. So it kind of confirms what Merkel had to say.
Now, that wasn’t the only thing that our neocon buddies were doing. The Kaganites. They were also sending money to the Banderians. Now, this is one of those areas that gets a little complicated. Because you actually have to know something about the area, about the region, about the history of this part of the world.
Now, the Banderans are named after Stepan Bandera. He was a Ukrainian nationalist from Galicia who lived during the Second World War. Now, you’re probably noticing that I’ve mentioned this place called Galicia. Third time, fourth time in this show. And you probably have never heard of it and had no reason to hear about it. And if you did, you didn’t think about it, because there was again, no reason to, if you’re an American. But this is a part of what is now Ukraine. And he was a Ukrainian nationalist from this area. And he hated Russians primarily. He was mostly an anti-Russian. And he was willing to side with the Nazis to defeat the Russians.
Now, he was also he played both sides of it and all that and this guy was a real fanatic. But he’s a little bit of a national hero in Ukraine not really a national hero but some parts of Ukrainian nationalists treat him as a national hero. And one of those parts is the Azov Battalion. You’ve probably heard about those guys. These guys get their inspiration from Stepan Bandera.
And there’s others there’s, Right Sector there’s. What the heck are they called? Aidan? There’s some other there’s another group I can’t remember their name but these are the ultra-nationalists. The real hardcore fanatics right? That a fanatic Ukrainian nationalist. These are guys that they’ve had they’ve shown up at conferences in Europe nationalist conferences. I’ve been to some of these conferences. They’ve invited Americans to speak at their conferences.
Greg Johnson spoke at one of their conferences in, gosh, four or five years ago I think. Which is why Greg Johnson is super pro-Ukrainian despite the fact that the Ukrainians are in bed with the global American empire.
But these guys, it’s a funny thing, it’s a weird movement, because they’re really not Ukrainian nationalists in the conventional sense. They’re into a lot of LARPing. They embrace a lot of the symbols of the Third Reich, but also do a lot of Paganism type stuff. But primarily what they’re about is that they hate Russians! They also hate Hungarians, they hate Poles, they hate anybody who’s not Ukrainian. They’ve staged events where they basically pogroms against the Hungarian minority, or the Polish minority.
And of course, Bandera himself was a pretty nasty piece of work. The Russians eventually assassinated him after the war. He was living in Berlin, and they killed him in Berlin. And that kind of gets to this other problem, though, in Ukraine, is that by financing these guys, and all their Nazi iconography, that really stirs the passions of the Russians. The Russians lost 100 million people, something like that. I mean 80 million* people, something like that, during the Great Patriotic War. They think of the Nazis as the worst people who ever lived on the planet. So anybody who embraces any of that stuff is immediately the enemy of the Russians.
[* ZMan in a comment on his blog said that he mis-spoke here:
on January 13, 2023 at 6:18 pm said:
I misspoke on the death toll of the Russians during the war. I actually woke up in the middle of the night thinking about it, but there was no way to fix it, so I went back to sleep.
The West has worked hard to minimize the death toll the Russians suffered, but a good number is 20 million.”]
And that of course, was done on purpose. The reason why the Kagan cult financed these guys, these ultra nationalists, really pro-Nazi sort of guys, is they knew that it was like waving the red cape in front of the bull. That that would get the Russians excited, and angry, and mad, and perhaps provoke them into this war in Ukraine. And that’s really what the project has been since 2014..
After the Russians took Crimea, which was fairly bloodless, they just basically showed up and the local population was happy to see them. Well, they wanted to try and draw the Russians into this conflict. In the Donbas. Because, the belief was that the Russians were just a gas station run by a bunch of oligarchs and drunken Russian dudes and that if a real war broke out, the country would fall apart.
And that’s what this has all been about since 2014, just like the General said, they’ve been plotting and planning to try and create this war in Ukraine, believing that this would be the trick, this is the thing that would bleed the Russians White, that they wouldn’t be able to sustain military operations in there. It would cause their economy to crater, it would cause the population to revolt and then the whole place would disintegrate. That’s what this has been all about. That’s why there’s a war in Ukraine now.
The Russians looked at what was going on. They saw all this NATO involvement, the arming of the Ukrainians, giving them supplies, and training them up and building all these fortifications and defenses.
You’ll probably see by the time this comes out a bunch of stories about Soledar finally being sacked by the Russians and then Bakhmut being under assault. These are these massive fortifications. There’s like 120 miles of tunnels under Soledar. Now granted, a lot of them are because it was an old salt mining town.
But going back to the Czar, the Russians have been building up fortifications in this part of the world and one of those places was Soledar, It was Bakhmut. There’s a couple of others too. Because the Russians have always looked at this as being one of the real weak points for them if they ever got invaded from the West. So they’ve got fortifications all over the place. Stalin poured a billion tons of concrete in this area for fortifications.
You might remember back when Mariupol, this city south of Ukraine, fell to the Russians. There was a steel plant there that had eight stories below the ground of this building. And the steel plant itself was the size of multiple city blocks, so eight stories of catacombs underneath of it. And the same is true that in Bakhmut, I think they said there’s tunnels that are 100 meters deep underneath of the city.
So the West has been pouring even more concrete and military infrastructure in these areas, which are already heavily fortified. So the Russians looked at this, they looked at this Banderian groups, and look, there’s a lot of these guys and these Banderian guys, these ultra nationalists, were fighting in the Donbas. They’re in there killing Russians because most of the people in the Donetsk and Luhansk are Russian speakers. They’re native Russians. So from the perspective of Moscow, seeing guys with Nazi iconography on them attacking Russian citizens in the Donbas, well, it brings back a lot of institutional memory.
But there’s another angle here. There’s a guy named Igor Kolomoisky. He is a Ukrainian oligarch. He’s a very rich guy, ran banking and all kinds of things. He’s also the guy who financed Zelensky. He also finances various neocon operations in the United States. So there’s that connection again.
If you’ll remember, back during Trump’s presidency, there was that impeachment. I forget how many impeachments they had now at this point. But one of the impeachments was about Ukraine. There was all these people with these weird Ukrainian names showing up and complaining about the Trump people investigating what was going on in Ukraine. Well, that gets to this. See, that’s the Ukrainian oligarch. And he’s not alone, but he’s the big guy. He’s the big player. No, not the big guy, as in Joe Biden, but their big guy.
Well, he’s the guy hiring all these people in Washington, giving them no show jobs like Hunter Biden. And he’s also funneling money into the Institute for the Study of War, and the Bulwark, and the Dispatch, and all these other neocon outlets in the United States. That’s how the money works. And so that’s why these people are so obsessed with Ukraine.
If you want to know why this weird, highly corrupt, fairly new country, that should have no interest to Americans is at the center of everything that we talk about for the last ten years, well, there’s your connection. You’ve got the money guys in Ukraine who are giving money to the Kagan cult, who runs American foreign policy, and they’re helping all these politicians get their beaks wet, and all the corruption that’s in Ukraine, and on and on it goes. And that’s why we have this massive conflict in Ukraine.
Now, I have a few minutes left here, so I want to kind of tie this up with a bow.
The reason that there’s a war in Ukraine and the reason why America is draining it’s treasury for this massive conflict against Russia has everything to do with this bizarre cult of people, neocons, the Kagan cult, whatever you prefer. I’m starting to like the Kagan cult because it has a nice ring to it. But it also kind of focuses on this guy Kagan, that no one ever talks about but is at the center of all this, all these people associated with them.
But the reason that this has become an American problem is because we have this collection of lunatics imported from, or their ancestors were imported from, this part of the world that has been ridden with ethnic strife for 1000 years! This part of the world. You’ve got jews, and Poles, and Hungarians, and Lithuanians, and Latvians, and Ukrainians, and Russians. I mean, you name it, you got everybody in this area with a grudge, with an animosity towards one another.
And we invited these people in and allowed them to take over our foreign policy. And of course, our foreign policy now is starting to look like just another participant in this age old thousand year conflict between these different tribes. And that is the fundamental problem that we have.
It’s a reason to some degree why the Russians have no interest in going west of the Dnieper River because they look at that part of the world, western Ukraine, and say they don’t want any part of this. They would rather the West, they’d rather Poland annex western Ukraine than to have to deal with these crazy people that seem to exist in that part of the world.
Unfortunately, we don’t have that luxury. We can’t deport, at least not yet, our crazy people from that part of the world and send them back there. But for now, they’re running our foreign policy. And that’s why we’re spending hundreds of billions of dollars in a war in Ukraine that should never really have happened.
Okay, well, I apologize for that being a bit rambling. I have notes in front of me. I have so much. I was just trying to rush through it because it’s a big topic. There’s a lot of history here, 1,000 years of history.
The American part of it is only 100 years old when we started importing these crazy people from this part of the world into our country. But it’s a mistake that keeps on giving 100 years later, these imports from Galicia, and Ukraine, are causing all kinds of mayhem for normal Americans.
But I did the best I could under the circumstances. So anyway, I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and I will be back next week.