Jeffrey G. Moebus
Anybody attempting to understand what is unfolding in Ukraine and over in the South China Sea and Taiwan should read George Orwell’s 1984. When you do, you will recognize and realize the following.
To use Orwell’s terms: What we have here and now is a Eurasia with its Putin and an Eastasia with its Xi. All that is lacking is an Oceania with its Big Brother. And we have a whole gaggle of folks on the American political landscape ~ on the Left and on the Right ~ who would love to have the chance to fill that slot.
America’s twenty year “Forever War” after 9/11 was, is, and ever will be a half-time show designed to keep the troops occupied, the defense contractors profitable, and the American people comfortably numb to protracted conflicts in places many of them cannot find on a map of the world.
For now, Russia has recovered from the disintegration of European Communism and the USSR ~ and China has recovered from the madness of Mao ~ sufficiently for either [or especially both] to present viable, credible “threats” to America’s 30-year reign of global, unipolar hegemony since the end of Cold War I in December, 1991.
For now looms Cold War II, with Ukraine, the South China Sea, and/or Taiwan set to kick it off in fine fashion.
And to understand what is happening in Ukraine, in particular, one must also be familiar with the history of Russia’s interaction with Western Europe over the past 200 years. Napoleon and Hitler both tried to bring the “blessings” of the West to Mother Russia, and failed at terrible cost, particularly to the Land, Country, Nation, and People that was ~ and still is ~ Russia.
NATO is hard on all of Russia’s borders except in Ukraine; and, given that history spanning over two centuries, it is not at all difficult to understand why Russia wants to keep it that way. This in no way justifies, excuses, or exonerates Putin and his illegal, immoral, and quite insane invasion of Ukraine. It merely speculates on a very real possible motive.
And beyond all that is the fact that a major force at work here in the United States is the possibility of a War, and the effect that that can have on the Citizens of a nation already hammered by a failed national response to a pandemic, inflation kicking in big time, a national Debt that just broached $30 trillion, a crumbling infrastructure increasingly vulnerable to disruptions by weather, cyber attack, and social unrest, and the disintegration of anything even close to a national consensus on virtually every hot-button issue: from vaccine and mask mandates, voting rights, and critical race theory, to gun control, police violence, and crimes against persons and property, to drug overdoses, suicides, and vehicular deaths, abortion, wokeness and cancel culture, “domestic terrorism,” and so forth.
So that’s the “long answer” to what’s up in Ukraine and East Asia.
The short, bottom-line, bullet-hits-the bone answer is that it is a very convenient distraction for Putin, Xi, and Biden [ie, his owners, operators, and script writers, America’s Ruling Elite] as they each attempt to deal with very serious economic and social problems within their own kingdoms.
While the wings haven’t fallen off quite yet, rivets are popping loose and hydraulic fluid is streaming back across the wing tops. And the folks up in the cockpit are very aware that it is increasingly visible to the other folks back in 1st, Business, and especially Tourist Class.
Add all that to the fact that this is an election year in the US, and this is shaping up to be a very interesting Chinese “Year of the Black Water Tiger,” indeed.
Note: One of the biggest differences between 1984 and today is that we all carry our very own portable, personal telescreen around with us. Certainly makes the job of the Thought Police a whole lot easier, eh?
Jeffrey Moebus, a retired U.S. Army Master Sergeant, spent two years in Vietnam in the 1960s and two years in the pre-Operation Desert Storm Middle East in the 1980s. He lives in Sitka, Alaska on the sailboat he brought up from San Francisco Bay ten years ago this summer, and is the POC for Veterans Against War [Sitka Platoon] at email@example.com.