Third World War?

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By ALEKS*

Outline events of a collapsing Ukraine and the end of NATO

For Andrei Raevsky

There has been a lot of talk recently about where the escalating spiral of war in Ukraine will end. Will it end in World War III? Will there be a nuclear war? What are the determining factors? And what would indicate that World War III is imminent? I will go through these questions in detail from a strategic perspective.

So will there be a third world war? I would say yes, with almost absolute certainty. But there remain a few questions that need to be clarified before we start panicking. I personally, today, see no need for panic. Yet. But what questions am I referring to? Explicitly: When will World War 3 break out? Under what circumstances? Which alliances will participate? Where will the main battleground be? Finally: will the three great powers clash directly against each other on a large scale?

I don't have answers to these questions. But you can see that these are strategic issues, not operational issues like the ones we are currently considering in Ukraine. I don't think that operational issues – whether 100 tanks will be supplied to Ukraine, or even 200 supersonic fighter jets – will decide anything about the likelihood of a Third World War. What I hope to do here is help readers develop their strategic thinking so that they can see beyond the narrow operational issues I referred to earlier.

 

preconditions

We seek to develop a valid strategic and operational framework. I now watch all the great and well-known analysts of podcast go progressively jumping on the same train as me. Everyone is talking now, instead of operational “big arrows” (large-scale attacks), of methodical grinding on several fronts, to put pressure on the Ukrainians as much as possible, so that then they collapse. As things stand, this seems far more reasonable.

 

More weapons shipments

Let's start with arms shipments. Strictly speaking, the war seems to have intensified far more than either side ever imagined. From my personal point of view, I go so far as to assume that Russia had planned escalations to the destruction of the third formation of the “Ukrainian” army.

First formation: The initial Ukrainian army, destroyed between late February and April 2022. Second formation: The new Ukrainian army, equipped with Western light equipment. Designed to protect Ukraine, until the third formation was trained and equipped abroad. The second formation was defeated around the end of July 2022. Third formation: Soldiers trained abroad and equipped with every weapon that countries with former Soviet stockpiles could have spared. Formation destroyed until the assumption of command of the SMO (Special Military Operation, by the initials in Russian) by General Valeri Gerasimov, on January 11, 2023.

Fourth formation: It is currently being constituted, but already partially engaged in combat, to prevent the front lines from collapsing. Its purpose is to maintain a scorched earth fight (scorched earth) as long as possible. This training consists of two components, which must ensure the achievement of this objective.

Professional army: Its professional component has fighters already mobilized for some months and trained abroad. They are, in particular, “ideologically confused and highly motivated” people. There is also only one word to describe them: ultranationalists (or neo-Nazis).

These fighters are being trained in new Western weapons and equipment. There is a high probability that the initial plan, a few months ago, was to use them for another counter-offensive, aimed at producing another “defeat” of the Russians, before the total collapse of Ukraine. However, it seems that events have moved faster.

There is certainly no more room for any kind of offensive. These units will likely be used for operational mobile defense. In other words, they will be used where it hurts most, to delay the collapse. The big question is whether this fraction of the army will be used wisely, on the west side of the Dnieper, in a mobile manner, to inflict as much damage as possible on the Russians, or whether it will simply be thrown into the meat grinder of the Donbass, and buried with the Ukrainian state.

Forced conscript army: As far as I can remotely judge, I have a feeling that all "highly motivated and ideologically confused Ukrainians" are "burned out" or in the process of being burned out in their army's fourth formation. The main indicator is that the propaganda of the Ukrainian government that its army had almost no losses, collapsed. Now, in Ukraine, it is well known that all draftees will die, be seriously injured or, at best, become Russian prisoners of war. There will be nothing left. Because one of the goals of the Russians now is the total physical annihilation of the Ukrainian army, which can be achieved in the summer of 2023. By then, everyone will be dead, wounded or captured. There may be some more types hardcore, “ideologically confused and highly motivated”, who will continue to fight, but will only be able to act on their own, not as part of an organized army.

That said, let's get back to the recruits. Since no one wants to die for a lost cause (they know now that it's over, and all that's left is to die), Ukrainian men are hiding or trying to escape the draft. There are mobile “recruitment” teams combing every city, to capture men under any circumstances. The implicit goal of exhausting the availability of all healthy Ukrainian men is still active.[1] These unmotivated people, to put it mildly, will be thrown into the trenches to buy time. They have no prospect but to be killed or, if they're lucky, captured by the Russians.

This is the fourth formation of the Ukrainian army, the last resort, so to speak. One component must buy time, paying in blood, while the other component must inflict maximum damage on the Russian forces. There are no more human resources left to continue the fight after this mobilization of the Volkssturm. Ukraine will experience collapse in the summer of 2023. And what does this have to do with new arms deliveries? Well, the war can only go on if these last Ukrainians have armored vehicles. “Confused” Ukrainians still believe in victory with Western equipment. They would not fight on or attack Russian positions barefoot and without armored assistance.

The following circumstances apply: all Soviet stock in NATO and Ukraine is depleted; most of the Ukrainian workforce is burnt out. So a new “Frankenstein” army is being built with all sorts of NATO stuff to keep Ukrainians motivated to die for the West. Frankenstein for being an incompatible mix of everything, something that has no battle value, for not having any combination weapons skill.

Considering the current state of the Ukrainian army, nothing can help. In fact, it no longer matters what the West is delivering. Its impact will be zero on the outcome of the war. It is just a motivator and enabler, for Ukrainians to continue the struggle, until the last “mobilizable” men are killed or captured. In addition, it will also mean many more dead Russians, due to the prolonging of the war. That is the sole purpose of the new arms shipments.

 

red lines

Perhaps there are red lines. But Russia is not likely to demarcate them by the quantity or quality of tanks and planes eventually sent by the West. I am personally convinced that the red lines were agreed upon by Sergei Naryshkin (head of Russian intelligence) and William Burns (CIA director) at the Ankara meeting on November 14, 2022. And these red lines, from my point of view, concerned the control and security of the territory after the war.

In fact, I assume that any kind of arms surrender would be “tolerated”, but not gladly, by the Russians, as long as there is no risk of loss of territory. And Ukraine, as a whole, with the exception of areas that may be ceded to other countries, is already being considered Russian territory.

This is tacitly accepted because the Ukrainian army is practically defeated. Russia is fighting the fourth and final formation. The best fighters have already died or fled. And there is another important reason. I'll address it in the “Injured Animal” section.

The last point of this section concerns Germany. That country is evidently being forced to send its tanks to Ukraine. This will have no military consequences, but the American calculation is that Russia could, under this scenario, escalate to breaking relations with Germany, and forever. The United States seems to desperately want to destroy relations between Germany and Russia for good. Thus, Germany would depend on the United States, and would not benefit from the new multipolar world order, guided by the BRICS/SCO.

Here are some personal speculations: Germany wants Ukraine to collapse as soon as possible, so they get out of the hellish scenario they were forced into by the United States. Russia knows this and keeps the back door open for Germany to manage the transition away from American dominance. I assume tank deliveries won't change much if there isn't more escalation. However, if NATO troops enter as part of the escalation, then we enter World War 3 as well.

 

the west

The West is currently in steep decline, economically, militarily and politically. However, we must not forget that the West has been the dominant pole for decades. So, of course, he amassed a lot of wealth and a big army. And now we come to the problem. Russia has worked almost openly for the implementation of the new multipolar world order around the BRICS and the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization). Americans were aware of this. At the same time, the American empire, following in the footsteps of other empires before it, has been working for the destruction of Russia. So the strategy has always been to turn all former allies and former Soviet states around Russia against her and then trigger the country's internal collapse.[2]

Both the United States and Russia, whether on initiative or reaction, have taken decisive action in 2022. And only one side will prevail. Whoever wins in Ukraine will have a virtually clear path to achieving their geopolitical goals. At least that's what the parties believe. And, by now, it should be clear to politicians and intelligence services in all Western states that the game is up. Ukraine will soon fall, and with it the US-centered unipolar world order. Russia will not be destroyed.

 

Goals

Americans already know their fate pretty well, ever since their plan in Ukraine failed. This need not be the end of America. They can become normal, powerful members of the future multipolar world order, sitting at the table with the other great powers. In this, there would be two possible outcomes: (i) exactly this scenario: the United States becomes a “normal” multipolar power at the table with others; a new world system emerges, controlled by an organization and not by states, or else a new type of UN/League of Nations, or else a fundamental reconstruction of the UN and purge of “Western influence” (hence the “de-Westernization” of the world ).

(ii) The United States decides to remain an “opposite pole”, against the multipolar world order, and then we would have two systems at the same time, competing with each other; what remains of the West and the BRICS/SCO states, both fighting for disputed markets hitherto free of blocs.

Unfortunately, I suppose, the second alternative will prevail, which would be the worst option for the world and for humanity.

What would be the objectives of the United States (the West) at this time? Completely drain the power of all your colonies, making them entirely dependent on the North American center, to secure markets and territory, and for the future fight against the powers of the Heartland, while weakening Heartland, as Europe is an integral part of it, with enormous potential if managed well.

Depleting Europe's stockpiles of weapons to produce the "positive" side effect that all these weapons will need to be replenished, and how industrial production costs will have risen sharply, due to, for example, gas pipeline explosions (what a coincidence!) , in addition to various other self-defeating reasons, Europe, in trying to replenish its stockpiles, will turn to the United States and beg for “cheap” weapons.

In fact, America is raping Europe and forcing it to come back to them and beg for more. Perversion? Perhaps, as Scott Ritter would say, hateful.

 

injured animal

Most likely the West did not expect the war to develop as it did. First, he had the alternative that Ukraine would fall in a few days, and thus organize a guerrilla war. However, once it was seen that Russia was not undertaking a doctrinal strategic offensive, committing all its resources, but only one SMO (Special Military Operation), the reasoning was: the West will win.

But none of that happened. Neither Russia won with its SMO in a few days, nor will it lose. In fact, she is in Ukraine defeating the West, its armies and economies. Who would have thought of that? The United States knows very well what its new role will be. So they prepare for it, making Europe totally dependent, de-industrializing it and draining it into the next decade. Not just Europe, but all other colonies as well, including Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea, etc.

Here's the problem. As the United States is well aware of its impending downfall from superpower to a nation like any other (but still powerful), it struggles with a certain syndrome. When all is well, everyone is happy and competes to claim success for themselves. When things go wrong, the opposite applies: everyone tries to blame someone else, which is today, in this case, the United States.

Quick thoughts on this. There is no unified power that is determining the course of the United States. The ruling oligarchy (and the politicians are just its “jagunços”) doesn't seem to know exactly which way to go. There are forces that want to choose option 1, mentioned above, away from the imperial option and towards multipolarity, and there are also forces that don't want to go down without a fight. Unfortunately, most of establishment or the American oligarchy is in favor of the second option. This is where we are. The United States acts exactly like a wounded wild animal. It's biting, fighting and scratching everything around it. Which is extremely dangerous for humanity. One mistake, and everyone dies.

This is what we see in Ukraine. Now everything that can be used by the few capable Ukrainians left will be handed over, minus nuclear weapons. And, strictly speaking, it would be idiotic for Russia to make a big fuss about it. It will be managed. Climbing management. Yes, a few thousand more Russians will die. Or if you count Ukrainians as Russians, a few tens or hundreds of thousands more. But still, the world will survive.

It is up to Russia and other civilized people to deal with the rabies of this wounded animal and contain it so we don't have to use nuclear weapons or start WW3. That's why Russia is taking so many hard hits without responding.[3]

 

Challenge

The challenge is for Russia to win the war in Ukraine without escalating too much, so as not to trigger any reaction from the West that could trigger World War 3 from Ukraine. There is currently no potential for such an escalation if we consider only the Ukrainian and Russian armies. The Ukrainian army is soon gone (at the end of summer 2023). But Americans may decide to sacrifice European armies against Russia as a substitute force without direct American involvement. It's not impossible, although I believe the probability is quite low.

Consider, for example, the Poles or other Europeans sending their own troops to defend Western Ukraine, Odessa or Kiev. People don't want to? Is there no such humor? No weapons? Who cares? Just create enough false flag operations within the European Union, activate a massive media campaign, and we have fanatical Europeans, cheering for war and offering to march on Moscow. Such a scenario needs to be avoided. This is what you might call “scaling management”.

Why did I write that Americans can use Europeans as a surrogate force? Well, Europe is no longer interesting for the United States. They are turning to the new hot spot, which is trade, and therefore Asia. Europe is over. Not worth more than a used condom, but still useful in trying to weaken Russia.

Throwing military junk and human waves at the Russians is producing losses for Russia, both in people and economically. Opportunity costs are those that are accounted for as favorable opportunities that are lost. Thus, Russia can prosper, developing trade and relations with the “New World”. But instead it would need to go into full mobilization, devoting much of its human resources, goods and well-being to the military and war, while other actors exploit Russia's absence from world markets. This is one of the possible games.

 

Indicators

We're talking about an injured wild animal. Your actions are totally unpredictable. And he's always doubling down. Therefore, nothing can be excluded. We must be aware of this. And that's why it's worth taking note of some important indicators, which would signal that a threshold has been crossed, and from which there is no return.

Overt or covert mobilization efforts within major European countries. Overt or covert transition to a war economy/production within major European countries. A mobilization of conscripts in Russia over one and a half million people. Visible signs of President Vladimir Putin's unrest, as noted between November 2021 and February 2022. The active and official participation of NATO troops in hostilities against Russia. The official break of relations between Russia and the main NATO countries, with the withdrawal of diplomatic missions, etc. The complete severing of economic relations. Russia's exit from many non-crucial markets without visible reasons. Russia's withdrawal from Syria. An overt or covert military mobilization in Russia.

The withdrawal of Americans from relevant regions without a clear reason, such as a sudden American withdrawal from the Middle East, including its navy. (The Americans would try to get as much equipment and troops out of a danger area as possible before Russian barrages of fire began hitting American bases around the world.)

 

important factors

I want to be honest, everything I've said is just my assumptions, but I think it might be too late to trigger World War 3. Here are the signs: Ukraine's human potential is almost at an end and will soon be exhausted. Europeans were demilitarized. And they will be further demilitarized until this is over. There won't be much left to use to fight the Russians. Americans would withdraw their equipment to their country or Asia. The latter is an important region. Europe has lost meaning, and with it, NATO's obligations.

Article 5 of the NATO charter says that allies must consult whether and how to support one of their members under attack. The decision of individual member states can be to send medical equipment or simply to do nothing. This also applies to the United States, which probably wouldn't do much for the Eastern European states, and certainly wouldn't fight Russia over them.

When this war is over, NATO will be just four letters on a piece of paper. To be honest, I didn't expect that. I will present my thoughts on how NATO might be broken up in the “Strategic Perspectives” section. But, it seems, NATO's military branch will soon be out of date.

It is possible to recognize in all this context Russia's final objective: to guarantee its strategic security on the western flank, forcing the West to accept the new project of a treaty for European security. Whether voluntarily or by force. The force can be military, economic or revolutionary.[4]. Don't forget that part! Because if you fail, we're all just going to die.

 

The pivot Odessa

The strategic pivot for the question of whether or not there will be a Ukraine going forward is called Odessa. With Odessa, Ukraine could sustain some kind of economy by accessing the Black Sea. It would probably be enough to continue an existence as a classic US failed state, like Libya and others, which I won't name so as not to run the risk of insulting the people who live there.

If Russia takes Odessa, or defeats the Ukrainian army elsewhere, so that Odessa is no longer defendable, then the war is over. Odessa is more important to Ukraine than the city of Kiev itself.

Odessa is also one of the strategic objectives, named by President Vladimir Putin, before starting the SMO. One such aim is to do justice to what happened in Odessa in 2014, when around fifty Russian trade unionists were burned to death by Ukrainian nationalists. It is a personal goal of Vladimir Putin to take over the city and seek justice for these deaths. Here are more reasons: It's a strategic city. Without it, there could never be such a thing as “Ukraine” again: it would not be economically sustainable. It would give Russia control of much of the Black Sea. Indeed, Russia's dominance in the Black Sea will no longer be contestable. Not only not from the sea, but also from land and airspace. Russia would practically have an outpost on NATO's eastern flank, which is crucial: radars, air bases, air defenses, missile bases, fleet base, staging areas, etc.

Odessa is a Russian city. Not just any Russian city; It is a very important Russian city. It was built by a very popular Russian empress, Catherine the Great. In addition, for Russia, it is a Hero City of the Great Fatherland War (the Second World War). Ukraine and the West will never accept peace with Russia as long as Russia keeps territories that the West also claims, like Kherson, Crimea etc.

If the Russians were to leave Odessa to Ukraine, under some sort of treaty, there would always be a danger that Ukraine would rearm and use Odessa and its access to the Black Sea to harm Russia. As we all know, and Russia knows even more, the West literally breaks every treaty it signs. Odessa is the last step before Russia can reunite with Transnistria. This is a problem that certainly needs to be addressed. And this needs to be resolved now. And this will most likely be resolved now.

Indeed, it is possible to take these arguments and turn them around, and thus one has the reasons why NATO (United States) has a strategic interest in securing Odessa. The arguments are essentially similar to these, just as the West craved Crimea.[5] To put it bluntly, Crimea and Odessa are far more important to the West than Kiev or any other territory in Ukraine. This is probably why there is so much talk of an offensive against Crimea. The question is, will the West have a strategic advantage against Russia or will Russia have a strategic advantage against NATO? The answer may now be obvious.

All things considered, there seems to be no chance in the world that Russia will not take Odessa. It doesn't matter what agreements would be proposed, or what treaties, or whatever. Perhaps there was a time when this was possible. In Phase 1. Maybe still in Phase 2 of the war…. But as of August 2022 all that is over. There was a lot of sacrifice not to go all the way. In fact, it would be a huge insult to all the people who died on the Russian side, civilian and military alike.

However, there will be an Odessa moment. The moment when it becomes clear to everyone that Odessa cannot be defended. I will give here an incomplete list of cases, which can be considered as an “Odessa moment”: Siege of Odessa (as in Mariupol). Collapse of the Ukrainian armed forces. Collapse of the Ukrainian state. Complete destruction of the Ukrainian army. Complete surrender of the Ukrainian army. the cut of region from Odessa further north to reach Transnistria. The approach of Odessa from the south, by the Russian army, without troops to defend it.

This will be the most dangerous moment of the war. It is the moment when the West will need to decide whether Ukraine will surrender or whether it will double down and intervene with Western troops. This is essentially the point at which it will be decided whether or not World War 3 will happen.

Whatever decision the West may make is meaningless to Russia. Russia is already on the verge of facing whatever threat of escalation from the West. Even if it means the end of the human species. There is no scenario in which, simultaneously, Russia does not take Odessa and the world does not go up in flames. This is, in practice, a virtual impossibility.

 

Chickens in Odessa

And here we come to the problem. Americans have a habit of walking into a place and claiming it forever, just by their presence. The logic is that if they are there, no one would ever dare to dispute it. For example, to avoid World War 3.

This is essentially true and works well across the world. Take Serbia (in the case of its province of Kosovo) and eastern Syria. Of course, there are many more examples. This can be called “chicken game".

The reason why the US Army's 101st Airborne Division was deployed in Eastern Europe, in Romania, is that the United States is looking forward to the Odessa moment. If the Odessa moment happens, the US government (or rather the US oligarchy) will move the 101st to Odessa.

The 101st is unable to fend off a Russian attack. The suggested scenario would only potentially buy time until the United States is able to deploy a large force in Romania to the rescue. The truth is that such a force does not exist, and it could not alleviate anything. Nowadays, Russia has conventional deep attack abilities with hypersonic missiles that cannot be stopped. Nothing in the European rear is defensible. Americans are not idiots, and their military planners know it.

So why the 101st? Well, they can be quickly deployed with helicopters and create facts on the ground. In fact, they intend to create a big “chicken game” in Odessa. This would result in two problems for the Russians: If then the Russians attack Odessa and the American troops, they will have triggered World War 3 from the western point of view. This is primarily for civilian audiences around the world to consider how a world war starts and how it can be prevented. No one will ask why the Americans moved in a hurry after the first missiles started flying. One can even ask who shot first, but that doesn't matter. Everyone would die anyway in a nuclear fire.

As I indicated before, Odessa is a crucial and stunning historic city for Russia. In fact, Russia does not want to fight in these cities, in order to preserve them. If the Americans come in, Russia will be forced to destroy Odessa to get them out. Once again, it will no longer matter what point you reach.

Will this “Chicken Plan” be activated by the Americans? Difficult to come to a conclusion. If they assume that Russia would back down if they entered, it could happen. But this information would be wrong and the escalation would have already been triggered. Personally, I still don't believe, judging by the political climate, that this will be triggered. But that assessment can change at any time.

Provided such a “Chicken Plan” is triggered by the Americans, the question remains what strategy the Russians would choose to get them out of Odessa. Here are some possibilities: There may be a very short deadline for a diplomatic solution, but one that does not leave Odessa in the hands of the West. More likely, some sort of geopolitical trade elsewhere to preserve humanity. In short, that would mean no more than 48 hours. The Russian army cannot wait for the US armored brigades/divisions to organize in Romania to provide reinforcements to the 101st's paratroopers in Odessa.

A direct attack on Odessa, simply leveling it with everything inside, to give the American forces no time to reach their paratroopers. A painful solution.

Increase the Dial of pain for the United States around the world, aiming to force them to withdraw voluntarily, for example, by sinking some American aircraft carriers (which could easily be accomplished at any moment by Russia, with its hypersonic missiles of long range), bombing poorly protected US bases around the world or destroying NATO infrastructure in Europe with high-impact weapons.

There is nothing the West can do about it, as there is currently no technology that can shoot down hypersonic missiles. Such a Russian tactical action would be limited only by the number of available missiles. It is not known how many of them Russia already has incorporated.

Note that it would be preferable for the West to simply accept the return of a Russian city to Russia. There would be no need to come to the last consequences. I wouldn't want to see a reversed Odessa moment and a Russian attempt to drive out the chickens.

 

Strategic Perspectives

There were initial speculations of Poland directly intervening in Western Ukraine. Not to fight the Russians, but to secure territory. But President Vladimir Putin made it clear in one of his first speeches at the outbreak of war that such actions would trigger rapid responses. He was probably talking about hypersonic rain over Poland. Those planes died after that.[6] However, it seems that Poland itself is still eager to capture a part of Ukraine that it regards as former Polish territory.

This, of course, is an interesting fact. Why? Well, Russia wants to force the West to implement the new treaty project for European security, therefore, to repel NATO influence and military infrastructure in Eastern Europe. In previous articles, I presented the economic axes that could trigger a European political collapse. Here, I will present some strategies on a geopolitical scale.

Poland is openly talking about taking former Polish territories. Russia is highlighting this fact in the media. Even Dimitry Medvedev often highlights him on his Telegram channel. But other than highlighting it, there don't seem to be many objections. Indeed, it is possible that there are some advantages for Russia if Poland does indeed take the region from Lvov. First, look at the map.

Could Russia, in fact, allow Poland to take over region from Lvov marked above. It is a region highly committed and associated with the Nazi ideology of Stepan Bandera. Its population is deeply anti-Russian and it would be difficult to call it Russian or ex-Russian. In fact, taking it, appeasing it and governing it would be a burden for Russia. It will be a burden for Poland too. But they want...

The great advantage is not to govern or appease the region from Lvov. The big advantage is that this would trigger major tensions within the European Union (EU) and NATO, especially between Poland and the other big bloc countries: Germany, France and Italy. It is worth recalling a comment by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in 2022. It is alleged that he privately told the Poles that if they insisted on claiming compensation from Germany for World War II, Germany could remember former territories Germans who are now part of Poland. If Poland takes Lvov, this dispute will be revived.

Tensions in the European Union and NATO contribute decisively to the implementation of the new treaty project for continental security. Not voluntarily, but by diplomatic force. So it is really possible to imagine that such a move could take place if the Poles want to take Lvov, but in accordance with Russia, and not against Russia's will.

Here we come to two main constraints: (i) The oblasts north of Lvov must not be touched by Poland. These are buffer and security zones for Belarus; (ii) the oblasts south of Lvov must not be touched by Poland either. These are the geopolitical gateways to Eastern European states. They are, shall we say, land bridges across states, which are not very well controlled by the West: Western Ukraine (to be built), Hungary (which may break free from NATO once the land bridge is established) and Serbia (ditto).

If Poland claims these territories, there could be a swift response from President Putin. One suspects that the message was reasonably clear to Poland.

It is also possible that Western Ukraine (minus Lvov) will not join Russia. Who knows? But it will certainly be taken, demilitarized and denazified. Then it could be launched into some sort of pseudo-independence, with Russian military bases on its territory. But this "pseudo-independent country" would be crucial because it would be Russia's gateway to Eastern Europe. Your land bridge.

 

Hungary, Serbia and the end of NATO

And here we come to land bridges and trade routes. Essentially, Serbia and Hungary are now hostages of the West. As they are landlocked countries, they are also hostages of the United States, but more submissive hostages than other European nations. Serbia and Hungary cannot develop independent foreign policy or foreign trade. If they don't do what they're told, many things can happen to them besides military action: blackmail; bullying; blocking trade routes; denial of critical supplies; airspace closure. And all this without openly admitting it, but only inventing reasons.

The West loves to use Croatia for trade restrictions against Serbia within the framework of the European Union. Croatia then invents some reasons why Serbian trucks cannot pass through Croatia, or something similar. That's why Serbia has been forced for many years to say it wants to join the EU, even if the people don't. Such allegiance is demanded by the West, so as not to put pressure on Serbia again.

And here comes the war in Ukraine and “Western Ukraine”. If Russia succeeds in securing the land bridge to Hungary in Western Ukraine, the entire house of cards built to blackmail Hungary and Serbia crumbles. Russia would have, through Hungary (which faces problems like Serbia, although Hungary is part of the EU and NATO), direct access to Serbia.

This would allow both Serbia and Hungary to freely choose who they want to do business with and have relations with. Therefore, the entire Heartland would be open to these countries. And, with it, the states of the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) and the BRICS. The West could no longer threaten these countries by blocking them from trade and supplies, and if military threats are employed, Russia could send troops or provide unlimited military assistance across the corridor.

However, it is possible to imagine troops only in Serbia, as it is historically a “brother state”. That would already be a good part of the solution to the problem of Kosovo, which is a western-occupied province of Serbia. Today, NATO can threaten Serbia with bombing if Serbia decides to protect its citizens in Kosovo. If Serbia has direct land and air access to Russia, things will be completely different. Other than that, Russia has already moved out of the imperial path of the former Soviet Union. Russia will no longer spend blood and money to maintain a distant empire.

It is precisely this new connection that could mean the death of the EU and NATO. See this second map:

The black lines would be the new key trade routes of the “separatist” countries, Serbia and Hungary. They, in fact, long for these routes to be opened. As long as they are not open, both countries must endure massive intimidation from the West.

The red lines represent potential new trade routes between Russia (BRICS/SCO) and isolated Eastern European countries. When these nations see how Serbia and Hungary can develop independent politics and trade, more and more European countries will adhere to this model and free themselves from western influence/blackmail/colonialism. Once this starts to unfold, it will be the end of NATO and the EU. Combine that with economic pressure, stemming from self-sanctions and Poland's possible takeover of Lvov, and NATO and the EU are finished. Of course, no one should imagine that such a centrifugal process would take place overnight. We are talking about a few years.

No lines on the map for Romania? Well, Romania is by far the most submissive colony, without an ounce of will of its own. I don't know how much she could break free, even with land access to Russia.

It can be argued that some of these countries (Croatia, Greece etc) already have access to the sea. Yes, but they don't have land access to Russia. In theory, they could trade independently. But in the event of a military escalation, they would be on their own without the land bridge to Russia.

 

Russia's steamroller

There is something that one must not forget. Russia is not yet militarily mobilized, strictly speaking. It is not even a question of total mobilization. Russia is not yet even partially mobilized. But it must be remembered that if the West forces Russia to change its economy to a total war economy, its society will also fall into a total war mood and if its losses increase by a reasonable number, the West will most likely receive the same as it received later. of Napoleon and Hitler: a Russian society, army and war machine that cannot simply be “turned off” after reconquering Ukraine. If she has an army of a million – or even two million – fighters standing on the Polish border, that army will do what her ancestors did. He will march to Berlin, or even beyond, and end the new threat to the Russian state.

We haven't reached that point yet. And if there is no escalation that includes Western troops in Ukraine, we will never get to this point. However, if the West scales in with Western troops in Ukraine, that point could easily be reached.

As NATO is currently demilitarizing on a massive scale, and will soon exist as just four letters on a piece of paper, one can only imagine what would stop the Russian army on its way to Berlin. Anything.

Is Russia powerful enough to do this? This question is, in fact, insignificant. Just consider what would happen to Russia if it lost militarily. Given the state of NATO, there is not much this alliance can do against such an event, should Russia fight it “doctrinally” (classically, with all its resources). In Ukraine, there is a civil war between Russians. President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly said that he still regards Ukrainians as brothers and Russians. That is why he takes care that civilians suffer as little as possible in a war environment. It's even hard to imagine what weapons and what strategies would be applied against a hostile nation like Poland or… (fill in the blank). It certainly won't be a slow grind to just destroy an enemy army.

Nor does it matter how loudly people clamor for “Article 5” of the NATO charter. This is not a magic spell, which would make the Russian army disappear. Would a US nuclear retaliation be immediately deductible? No! For Americans, Europe is just a used condom. The new “nice guys” are in Asia. America is unlikely to put itself at risk over a used condom. Sorry, for Europe.

Again, a nuclear scenario would be difficult. But nothing is certain.

 

China

Initially I argued that there would indeed be a 3rd World War. And, yes, I believe there will be a 3rd World War. But I doubt, at least for now, that it will be unleashed in Europe. And I also doubt that their main battleground is Europe. Though one would imagine a battle in Europe.

The great battle of our time will be in Asia and the Pacific. And not today, but around 2030. The battle will revolve around expelling the United States from a region where it does not belong. China is preparing two strategies.

The best scenario for the world would be if the BRICS and the SCO collapsed the US imperial economy to such an extent that it could no longer sustain its empire and its network of military bases. Thus, under economic and social collapse, the United States would withdraw its bases abroad.

The second option is war. Thus, China is currently building the largest army the world has ever seen. But it's not ready yet, in terms of quantity or professionalism/experience. But it certainly will be for years to come. 2030 at the latest. Russia, currently subduing the Empire in Europe and depleting it, is the greatest gift China can receive. That's why China will do its best to maintain this status. And so, China will help (as it is helping) Russia to get around most of the sanctions. And Russia is more than returning the favor. It is buying time for China, with its blood, as a side effect of its existential struggle against NATO.

 

Conclusion

The problem this article seeks to answer concerns the prospect of a World War developing out of the crisis in Ukraine. I envision the 90% estimate that the war in Ukraine will not escalate into a World War. Unfortunately, 90% is still far from certain. There is still the possibility that the West will try to launch proxy forces (Poland, Romania, Germany) into Ukraine to create a larger “local”/continental conflict, while the Americans focus on Asia. Here we are at 5%. And above that, there is a 5% probability that the United States will directly interfere (from the Odessa moment etc), which would certainly evolve into an instant world war. Like this:

Peace after the defeat of the Ukrainian army: 90%

Development of war between Russia and proxies Europeans within Ukraine/Europe: 5%

American intervention in World War 3: 5%.

Of course, it's still too high. We're talking about the human species!

In fact, there are two main determining factors that will decide whether there will be an escalation or not: the “Odessa moment” and the “Western Ukraine” moment.

Odessa Moment: The West will try to do what it can to avoid handing over Odessa to the Russians. This is where strategic military considerations come into play. If the Russians capture it, they will have a strategic advantage and leverage over NATO. If NATO captures it, so does NATO against Russia.

“Western Ukraine” moment: This is about Russia's land access to Hungary and therefore to Serbia. Essentially, if Russia succeeds, NATO and the EU are finished. This is already history. Not instantly, but within a reasonable number of years.

Everything depends on the decisions of the American oligarchs. At a time when their domination is threatened with global extinction, are they willing to let Ukraine slip from their grasp? or not? These guys are not idiots. Of course, they want to retain their power. But in case of a nuclear war, there will be no more power. Even if they seem to have no reverse gear available and are always doubling down, it is still possible to imagine that, in this particular case, they might even do the right thing… and vacate Ukraine. Why would we be facing the possibility of only 10% of escalation? Simply because Russia (BRICS) is involved in its management, to provide a safe way for Americans to make their transition to a normal state.

And here we come to the fact that even the Americans and their oligarchs cannot control everything. It's possible that a crazy group of people, whether in America or Europe, suddenly do something extremely stupid when they feel the end is near. Look at the Poles, or the small Baltic states, or some extremely crazy American neoconservatives. But there might even be no more than a 10% chance for a chain of events of such an idiotic magnitude.

*Aleks is the pseudonym of a Serbian economist and geopolitical analyst. Edits the Black Mountain Analysis blog on the Substack platform.

Translation: Ricardo Cavalcanti-Schiel.

Originally published on the portal Black Mountain Analysis/Substacks.

Translator's notes


[1] In historical terms, this situation has occurred before. The case that is closest to Brazilians is that of Paraguay, after the war against the Triple Alliance, in the second half of the XNUMXth century.

[2] This roadmap is exactly what the now well-known report by the RAND Corporation prescribed, ExtendingRussia. Competing from Advantageous Ground (Stretching Russia. Competing from Advantageous Ground) released in 2019. About the significance of this organization in the scenario of think tanks North Americans, see the explanatory article by journalist Barbara Boland. For the significance of that report in the context of actions in Ukraine, see the article by Portuguese analyst Hugo Dionísio.

[3] Care in measuring the impacts of the deconstruction of Anglo-American geopolitical hegemony by Russia and China was suggestively synthesized by analyst Andrei Martyanov as the effort to tame “a baboon with nuclear weapons”.

[4]  The author may be referring to possible “regime change” programs in Europe sponsored (or stimulated) by Russia itself.

[5] Controlling Crimea and deploying a NATO base in Sevastopol is recognized by geopolitical analysts as one of the implicit (if not the most relevant) immediate objectives of the Barack Obama administration when sponsoring the coup d'état in Ukraine in 2014.

[6] In fact, speculations about a Polish occupation of Western Ukraine died (or confirmedly died) after the first use of hypersonic weapons by Russia in the Ukrainian theater, at the beginning of the conflict, when weapons depots and accommodation for the first mercenaries arrived in Ukraine were hit. Ukraine, near Lvov. Among these mercenaries was the already famous and very scared Brazilian who left Ukraine at full speed and recorded the episode on video on a social network.

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