Stop the “Algorithm of World War III”

The first trip to Kyiv of high-level American officials since the conflict began took place on April 24, after which Secretary of State Tony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced yet another package of military aid for Ukraine (which was certainly welcomed by the arms industry). But rather than pressing for negotiations, they indicated that Ukraine could defeat Russia if given the right equipment.

Accompanying the two secretaries was the notorious Victoria Nuland, currently Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, who in 2014 had orchestrated the Maidan coup d’état, which brought neo-Nazis into positions of great power in Kyiv. Nuland has joined the growing chorus of officials warning Russia not to use nuclear weapons against Ukraine. In an interview with the European Pravda of Ukraine published April 22, she said “no one can exclude” that the Russians might use nuclear weapons in Ukraine. “Given that Vladimir Putin has already ordered awful, vicious, brutal war crimes, anything could happen. Different kinds of catastrophic weaponry could be used.”

The Kremlin has systematically denied any intention of ever deploying nuclear weapons in the conflict, and views such allegations as a clear provocation. Indeed, Nuland’s statement is interpreted as a threat by the U.S. to unleash nuclear war against Russia, regardless of what happens in Ukraine.

Another such provocation was a message appearing on the website of the Russian Emergency Ministry on April 19, warning the population that a retaliatory NATO nuclear strike could occur around Orthodox Easter (April 24), thus assuming that Russia would strike first. However, it was quickly established that the Russian website had been hacked.

Nonetheless, there is a real danger that such “warnings” on the use of nuclear weapons could become a self-fulfilling prophecy, as was pointed out in an article on, by Ivan Rizzi, chairman of the Italian Institute for High Strategic and Political Studies (IASSP), who refers to it as “Technical-Algorithmic Principle”, which seems to take control at a certain point of political decision-making.

The human mind, he writes, “tends to decouple from a concrete dialectics and has difficulty reversing its own choices, once these have turned into a process”. He cites the example of top Wehrmacht officers who admitted that “We were so technically engaged in organizing 91 [military] divisions, that there was no time for reasoning”. Today, the “very fact that such an hypothesis [the use of nuclear weapons] is raised… and that national debates and talk shows talk about it, sets in motion the scheme of a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, we are developing a hallucinatory dialogue destined to increase schizophrenia and make events appear fatal.”

However, Rizzi cautions, we need to “challenge the fatalism of an escalation of the conflict in Europe”, and break “the algorithm an apocalyptic epilogue”.

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