Volodymyr Zelensky's trap

Image: Tim Mossholder


Whether Zelensky gets his glass full – the US entry into the war – or his glass half full – Europe entering the war – either solution is devastating for our lives

Stepan Bandera's Ukraine, which has been furiously privatizing its remaining state properties left to it by Russia and the USSR, already has a large part of its valuable black lands in the hands of Blackrock, Monsanto and other interests. North Americans. These are joined by energy, mining, agro-industrial and real estate interests.

Now, to finance the war effort, the illegitimate Volodymyr Zelensky, who is currently usurping the position of president (I can already see that kiss from Von der Leyen, the usurpers recognize each other), is preparing to sell what he still has left. The revenues from the IMF, and from financial agreements with the European Union, require this and the businesses in question constitute, in some cases, important natural monopolies.

We know who will profit most from the purchase of these state assets. The USA will get the best share, but the United Kingdom, Germany, France, in that order, will also get their share. If Hotel Ukraine is the most famous asset of all those announced in this new package, here is a list, which the Kiev regime itself says is a “large privatization”. Energy companies, Port of Odessa, mining sector, distilleries, heavy machinery factory such as locomotives…

The most serious thing about all of this, the most tragic thing for all of us, is that the sale of the country to US and Western interests is not innocent and goes far beyond a simple act of corruption or handing over the country to foreign interests. Consciously or unconsciously, the acquisition of large and profitable properties, by large Western corporations, constitutes a very important step towards worsening the conflict and one that I believe goes unnoticed by many good people, normally concentrated in the specifically military aspect.

In these cases, the military aspect is nothing more than the peak of the iceberg, which hides all the complexity of economic relations that, at the base, constitute the reason for everything that is happening. Recourse to the military happens when relationships at the base become irreconcilable.

Volodymyr Zelensky, certainly aware that the war can only be won with the direct entry of the USA, even if we all have to lose it (in wars everyone loses) for him to win it, as he hands over his country to the oligarchies that support The North American political apparatus will know the importance of the control of Ukrainian properties by those powerful interests. What better way to protect access to the Black Sea than by handing over the Port of Odessa to Western interests?

History tells us that Western corporate interests, especially North American ones, protect their assets, even if, to do so, they have to invade countries and occupy them. In this sense, Volodymyr Zelensky knows that the greater the dominance of American corporations in Ukraine, the greater the likelihood of worsening the conflict and direct US entry.

Intentionally or coincidentally, a development is at stake that could potentially attract the USA itself into a kind of “trap”, driven by the greed for easy money, from the state and the people, which characterizes imperialist corporations. I would even say that this is the American story when it comes to its military interventions. Its people are led, by economic interests, into “traps” set by, and for the sake of, these same interests, which involve and make the state dependent on real and potential wars. The famous eternal wars.

The former India Companies, the Netherlands, Portugal or England, even had private armies to defend their assets in the colonies. In the USA, as in other capitalist powers, the defense of these interests is entrusted to the respective military-industrial complexes, as well as private military recruitment companies (PMCs).

Imperialist powers, throughout history, intervene militarily in places where their monopolistic interests are threatened. What I consider unreasonable is that this appropriation of Ukrainian property by the West is not recognized as one of the most important factors influencing the military escalation. Everyone looks at the parade and response of weapons, but few look at the underlying material relations, which leave the leaders of both countries with no political solution other than the defense of the interests that, at each moment, are manifested, more or less surreptitiously.

However, in the midst of all this, there are more powerful forces that move in the opposite direction to the interests of Volodymyr Zelensky and his Galician gang. This war was born as proxy (by proxy) and, for the USA, in principle it will have to die. The decisive battle, for maintaining the hegemony of the North American imperialist system, takes place in the Pacific. The Chinese challenge forces exclusive concentration and this leads the Democratic Party itself to demand from its representative in the Middle East, Israel, a different and more conciliatory attitude, so that the conflict does not extend beyond what is desirable. That he will succeed, I have doubts, but at least try.

The USA, being fully aware of the “trap” set by Volodymyr Zelensky, does not fail to take advantage of the gain, but it is to European countries that the defense of their corporate and military interests in Ukraine has been reserved. Framing such interests within what Antony Blinken refers to as the “transatlantic security area”, such a classification, from my point of view, does not drag the US into the conflict. It drags NATO itself and, in particular, Europe. As has been highlighted countless times, it is Europe that has to shoulder the largest share of the effort.

This effort will be paid for with more weapons, money, coming from the frozen 300 billion euros that Joe Biden at the G7 summit will not fail to deliver to Ukraine. Since these reserves are mainly in European banks, guess which currency and which financial sector will collapse after this confiscation? For now, Saudi Arabia let its agreement with the USA, for the exclusive sale of oil in Dollars (the Petrodollar agreement), expire on June 9th.

But, for a long time to come, the US will enjoy reserve currency status. The Euro and the Pound Sterling cannot boast of the same and when the countries of the global south accelerate the withdrawal, already underway, of reserves deposited in European banks, we will see.

These factors result in another movement that is said to be in contradiction with the interests of the Kiev regime. This tension between “European people's interests” and US “corporate interests” threatens to destroy the remaining democracy of many European countries and break up entire nations. The latest elections for the European Parliament are already a result of this. France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, saw important results, which represent, above all, popular anxiety for the normalization of their lives. Workers, farmers, small business owners, are fed up with instability, austerity and pessimism. The hope of a better life was taken away from the European peoples.

The same people who take away and deny, every day, such hope, are those who accuse of “populist”, “extremist”, “radical” movements, all parties that oppose the warmongering of the so-called “political center”. To everyone who throws the word “peace”, they respond with the accusation of “Putinist”; to everyone who shoots with the maxim that “not one more bullet to fuel the Ukrainian conflict”, they respond with a blunt “Kremlin agent”. Stereotyping, dividing, tribalizing became the watchword of a supposed “political center”, which elected itself as capable of uniting the space between the margins.

By giving up this role of “moderation”, the “moderate center” itself is also thrown to the margins. Thrown to the sidelines that defend the continuation of the war, of confrontation, figures such as Macron, Sholz, Sunak or the bureaucrat Von Der Leyen, end up leading the populations towards the forces that, in this nihilistic framework, are more organized and financially powerful: the reactionary forces. These forces, sensing and living on discontent, attract those who feel displeased by the economic situation, the fear of a large-scale war and the lack of prospects for growth, recovery and development.

In this context, the only response from the most bellicose leaders is to counter the fear of war, the fear of the extreme right. And this is the drama that is being experienced in Europe, in the USA, in the collective West. The feeling – only apparent – ​​that there is no valid alternative, means that only two alternatives are proposed that, on the surface, are mutually exclusive: either there is the option of the “moderate center”, for confrontation, for warmongering, for economic sacrifice. and social, in the name of “European values” that no one really knows what they are; or the “autocratic”, “authoritarian”, “dictatorial” option of the extreme right, but in which the “moderate center”, through a contradictory process of rewriting history and paradoxical philosophical confusion, integrates the solutions on the left.

Bifurcated between two terrible alternatives, one ends up choosing between Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, because one considers himself to be “extreme right” and the other a “liberal and moderate centrist”. However, to say that Le Pen is more right-wing than Macron is to make a huge mistake. Emmanuel Macron is more secretive and polite, but he is no less destructive. Macron has today become one of the main arsonists of nuclear war. Without using the term, we all know the consequences of sending NATO troops to Ukraine. We also know what the result of installing F16 bases in the Baltic countries will be. We know where the authorization to use SCALP missiles launched by Mirage II aircraft against recognized Russian territory will end.

And what about Olaf Sholz and his SPD? Today, it is once again the SPD that once again turns Germany against Russia, depriving its country of the resources that made it a world power. What would Karl Marx say if he knew that the museum, in memory of him, located in Trier, is managed by the Friedrich Herbert Foundation (yes, the one that financed the Socialist Party in Portugal), an organization linked to the SPD?

It is then the “moderate” policy (the term “moderate” is worth a compliment in itself) that threatens to lead us towards nuclear war. I ask what is so “moderate” about this! The fact is that, absurdly, even if Russia and Vladimir Putin were fully to blame, it would be the “moderates” who would expect the greatest effort at dialogue and peace. Instead, it is from the “moderates” that we expect the opposite: the constant crossing of red lines, Russian ones and their own. How many red lines have these people already crossed in their climb?

Whether Zelensky gets his glass full – the US entry into the war – or his glass half full – Europe entering the war – either solution is devastating to our lives and such devastation is what results when supported, if you are complicit and conniving with people who make hatred and xenophobia their way of life. The hatred I see in the Ukrainians of Galicia, against Russia, is compared to the hatred of the Zionists, against the Palestinian Arabs. A tribal, savage, barbaric and medieval hatred. In Ukraine or Palestine, hatred never conquered barriers, it only built them.

As a friend told me, when we are told to put on our helmets and pick up our machine guns, perhaps we will remember that peace is the greatest good that civilization can guarantee us. Maybe that day they will wake up to the “trap” in which we have been caught and will be able to see, on the horizon, who, in fact, with velvet words, exaltations of “democracy” and accusations of “extremism” is leading us to extreme destruction!

*Hugo Dionísio is a lawyer, geopolitical analyst, researcher at the Studies Office of the General Confederation of Portuguese Workers (CGTP-IN).

Originally published in Strategic Culture Foundation.

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