NATO Goes for Broke, But Is Not Unchallenged
Europe has been the scene of two intense diplomatic offensives over the past ten days, albeit with very different aims in view, one undertaken by Ukraine President Zelenskyy and the other by Chinese diplomats. Concerning the first, each step of Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s tour from May 13 to 15 served to ratchet up the threat of a direct war between Russia and NATO.
It began with his meeting May 13 with Pope Francis at the Vatican, where he dismissed out of hand the Pope’s offer to host peace negotiations, as well as Beijing’s plan for a negotiated settlement to the conflict. In an unnecessarily abrasive tone, he insisted that “it must be Ukraine’s peace” and that negotiations would only begin “when we are at the border of Crimea”. And as if to underscore his opinion of the Pope’s calls for peace, his gift to Francis was a bullet-proof vest!
From there, the Ukrainian President was off to Berlin (cf. below), Paris and London, where he was promised weapons galore, although only the British government has so far crossed the line of delivering cruise missiles, having a range of 300 km, to allow attacks further into Russian territory. (From the outset, the United Kingdom has outdone all others in pushing for total war on Russia, to be followed by China…)
Just before that, from May 9-13, Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang visited Germany, France and Norway, to argue against any disastrous economic decoupling between the EU and China, and for an increase in trade (cf. below). Beijing then sent its Special Envoy for Eurasian Affairs Li Hui to Kyiv on May 15 to discuss Xi Jinping’s peace proposal, after which he visited Poland, France, Germany and Russia. One week before, China’s Vice President Han Zheng was in Portugal and The Netherlands, after attending King Charles’ coronation in London.
Recognizing the importance of China’s growing role in international diplomacy, Washington also sent its national security advisor Jake Sullivan to Vienna for talks with Beijing’s State Councilor Wang Yi (cf. below).
Nonetheless, during Zelenskyy’s tour, it was announced by Russia that the Storm Shadow cruise missiles freshly delivered by the UK had already been used to attack Lugansk’s capital on May 13. This lowers the threshold to a direct military confrontation, quite likely with nuclear weapons, between Russia and NATO countries, which are now using Ukraine as a proxy.
However, it occurs as Germany is deindustrializing at an alarming pace, as the UK battles with a 19% inflation in food prices and food deprivation, and populations throughout Europe are conditioned to prepare for sacrifice. Meanwhile, the entire trans-Atlantic financial system, but in particular the United States, is threatened with a massive wave of bank failures. Evidently, the “military industrial complex” hopes that a “war economy” might somehow save the system – despite the tragic lessons history provides us.
In view of the refusal by a vast majority of countries in the world, that demand development, to support NATO, Helga Zepp-LaRouche recently commented that the so-called “rules-based order” is “not a winning proposition, and it’s definitely not something which will shape the future in any positive way. In a certain sense, it’s talk of a past, dying empire.” (That was, by the way, blatantly clear at the grotesque coronation celebrations of King Charles…)