If there is one thing that the current crisis in and around Ukraine makes clear, it is the complete irrelevance of the NATO alliance, which over the past 30 years has transformed itself from a defensive alliance to a mere instrument of power for the U.S. hegemon.
From a German’s point of view, it is difficult to comprehend what the West, i.e. NATO and the European Union, are supposed to be advocating in Ukraine. Supposedly, it is Russian expansionism that threatens peace in Europe, which is why trade with the country needs to be shut down, Nord-Stream 2 terminated, and the giant country also banned from the Swift system for international payments.
It is not difficult to see that not one of these points is in Germany’s interest, nor in the interest of almost all other European states. That gas supplies from the East turn out to be much cheaper for our economy than the alternative from the other side of the Atlantic is no secret. Neither are our high-tech exports to our eastern neighbor. And it goes without saying that such business has to be paid for.
Generally, special relations have always existed between Germany and Russia. By their sheer size, they have defined the basic framework of the Central and Eastern European order at least since 1871, and a bad relationship between the two almost always ended in disaster for the continent. That the U.S. is now trying to prevent both states from having a common rapprochement cannot work in the long run and will prove to be a big mistake for Washington.
Because the opportunity to build a common European house from “Lisbon to Vladivostok” was squandered after the end of the Cold War and a policy of ignorance and eventual confrontation with Moscow was adopted instead, the inclusion of Russia in a European security architecture in which the U.S. could well have maintained its dominant role no longer exists today.
NATO is an outmoded framework of an empire that has passed its zenith and now seeks to force its allies to ignore the most obvious realities of history and geography.
But such a policy is doomed to failure.
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