The European Parliamentary (EP) elections of May 2014 came as a surprise to many in the mainstream media. They were shocked that right-wing parties could come to the fore in such a liberalized Europe, and the BBC was correct in assessing it as a "political earthquake". A closer examination into the EP elections reveals that conservatism is once more on the upswing in Europe, with the "success" of liberalism there ironically playing a major factor.
The steady march of NATO eastwards is about to take on a new face, as 'Shadow NATO' is threatening to return to Ukraine in the coming months. The military organization cannot admit new members that have unresolved territorial disputes (Poroshenko claims that he will never recognize the reunification of Crimea with Russia), but there are indirect ways of going around this stipulation. Using Poroshenko as a Western stooge, NATO can direct him to enter into a de-facto military defense alliance with the organization.
The global public has been in shock due to Boko Haram’s savage kidnapping of 276 mostly Christian schoolgirls in Northeastern Nigeria. This audacious act serves to further splinter the country along religious and geographic fault lines and raises the risk of a regional spillover effect. As surprised as the public was to hear about the travesty, the news should not have been all that surprising for Western governments and Africa observers.
The situation in Ukraine is on the verge of spiralling out of complete control, especially now that the junta's military and Pravy Sector irregulars are deployed against the citizens of the Southeast. The US is bunkering down in its support of the coup-imposed Ukrainian authorities with a renewed round of sanctions against Russia and Congressional chatter about arming the Ukrainian forces.
The American President has just completed a whirlwind tour of East and Southeast Asia, visiting four critical countries for the US’ Pivot to Asia strategy. Envisioned to have both an economic (Trans-Pacific Partnership [TPP]) and military component, Obama was successful only in concluding and reinforcing terms on the latter. The US’ moves in Asia cannot be separated from what it is doing in Eastern Europe, however, because both theaters are part of a larger Eurasian campaign of containing Russia and China.
The West has resorted to the tried-and-failed tactic of sanctions in order to protest Russia's reunification with Crimea. Historically, sanctions have never achieved their desired political effect, and on the contrary, average citizens in the targeted state are usually inconvenienced or outright harmed. In the case of Western sanctions against Russia, they largely amount to nothing more than bluster and heavy-handed political rhetoric.
The popularity of the internet and the explosion of social media networks have brought about the migration of war from the physical to the virtual realm. Images, ideas, and perceptions are sometimes more important in winning and retaining a victory than tanks, bombers, and machine guns.
The Western press and certain Russian liberals have been in hysterics over Russia’s reincorporation of Crimea. Hillary Clinton previously compared Vladimir Putin to Adolf Hitler and Andrei Zubov, a professor at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), scandalously slurred grassroots Crimean attempts at integration as another "Anschluss".
Russia's humanitarian actions vs Western military interventionism: Tskhinval is not Tripoli, Crimea is not Kosovo
All theories aside about what happened to Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, the military consequences of its search and rescue operation in the already-contested South China Sea deserve to be addressed. Over ten countries are using their planes and ships to help find the missing aircraft, thereby increasing the military presence in the region. The assistance of certain out-of-region actors, with their efforts undoubtedly performed with the best and most noble of intentions, may also have a convenient dual military and intelligence purpose. The quarrelling between normally friendly ASEAN members Vietnam and Malaysia also shows that regional unity is not as close knit as previously thought, which moreover has implications for the entire ASEAN regional structure.
Information warfare is the force multiplier of 21st -century conflicts. It has the possibility to mobilize thousands of individuals and affect the perceptions of millions. It should serve as no surprise to see this technique rapidly evolving just as fast as technology does.
The ongoing pandemonium in Kiev has shown the hypocrisy of Western values and the dichotomy of democracy. Fought under the pretense of "Europeanization", the result of the illegal coup against Yanukovych’s government has ironically brought about the opposite: rampant nationalism and street-level thuggery. Surprisingly, the West has been silent about the fact that its proxies have been violating established Western values, which apparently are only supported as a slogan to place pressure upon non-Western governments targeted for regime change. Once they're illegally disposed of, the democracy and human rights rhetoric goes out the window and the true objectives behind the unrest begin to surface.
The Qatar-Saudi rivalry for leadership in the Mideast has finally broken to the surface, and America’s Lead from Behind strategy in the region is failing. After their competition accelerated in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, once close allies, are now experiencing a very public falling out. After supporting conflicting factions in Egypt and Syria, as well as vying for dominance over the Arabic news waves, both countries seem on the verge of plunging the Arab Peninsula into a Cold War, which would pose the greatest threat to America’s vision of regional security since the Iraq invasion over a decade ago.
The US is making historic power moves of aggression in simultaneously waging three multifaceted campaigns. It is targeting Russia, Iran, and China through destabilization in Ukraine, Syria, and the South and East China Seas. In the first part of the Battlefield Eurasia we spoke about crisis in Ukraine and actions the US is taking there, as well as touched upon the Syrian conflict. Here is the second part of the US' proxy wars against Syria and China.
Battlefield Eurasia: Ukraine, Syria, and the Asia-Pacific as targets of failing American imperialism
The situation unfolding in Crimea has an analogous historical counterpart: Texas. A comparison of Crimea with Texas will demonstrate the relative similarities between the two, arguing that if one accepts the current status of Texas despite its controversial origin story, then they are more than obliged to recognize the future status of Crimea, since the progression of events there have more legitimacy than those which transpired in Texas over 150 years ago.
The escalating tension brought about by the Ukrainian insurgent "government" has resulted in reciprocal protective measures by the Russian Federation, namely to authorize the use of military units to protect Russian citizens and military (possibly even energy) infrastructure from attack. Considering the geopolitical implications of a Russian peacekeeping intervention in Crimea, which could possibly be extended further into anti-Maidan pro-constitutional Eastern and Southern Ukraine, it is important to conjecture the probable course that such an event could take.
After the illegal coup in Ukraine, the US is now applying its hybrid Color Revolution-Arab Spring regime change template to Venezuela. Washington is in full-fledged offensive mode, attacking non-Western states through the plausibly deniable weapon of thug rule, aided and abetted by American finance. What is happening in Venezuela is no different than what transpired in Ukraine, as both countries are victims of America's new style of unconventional aggression.