Putin: ,Rational calculating and sober chess player or senile, power-drunk 69-year-old man?
The recognition of the separatist republics did not come as a complete surprise. On the one hand, the early decision of the Duma, then the Russian propaganda about a genocide against Russians in Ukraine as the first omen. Global Review already predicted this with the article „Will February 20th be Novorussia D-Day?“from February 11th 2022 , as well as us during the Munich Security Conference due to the hardened positions, the cancellation of attendance of the Russian delegation, Putin and Lavrov, as well as the Russian hostile attitude to Dr Rahr’s proposal for a NATO stop moratorium as well as the Western unwillingness to accept a neutral Ukraine with a South Tyrolean autonomy solution based on the concept of the article published by Global Review by the former Austrian Secretary General of the European Council Dr. Walter Schwimmers at all, it became clear that there would be no diplomatic solution. Likewise, it is not just about Ukraine, but, as the Russian draft treaty shows, about a rollback of NATO to the borders of 1997 and about a new European security architecture.
Compare also: „Will February 20th be Novorussia D-Day?“
Analyzing today’s geopolitics under Putin, the former Chief Inspector of the Federal Foreign Office, Dr. Hans-Ulrich Seidt called this as a „strategy of the dynamic defensive“ which essentially the thinker couple Snesarev and Swetschin (whose work are compared to the duo Marx/Engels) in their examination of Clausewitz and Russian geopolitics from the Tsarist Empire to the Bolsheviks as ideas and sees it as relevant to today’s Russian geopolitics under Putin.
Specifically, Snesarev’s view of the British Empire less as a democracy and more as an imperial financial center that is disingenuous and, via the Russo-British treaty of 1907 enclosing Russia, British India as the main building block of his empire, gaining access to the oil-rich areas of the Greater Middle East and at the same time wanted to position Russia as a junior partner of the British Empire against the German Reich are seen by Russia’s strategic decision-makers as analogous to today’s view of the USA. Putin, Gerasimov and three other people from the Russian security elite extensively quote Snesarev as evidence of how there is a revival of his works in Russia, even Alexander Solschenyzin is named as a key witness of the same thinking within the Russian intelligentsia.
Snezarev’s geostrategy saw as the conclusion an independent foreign policy of Russia, which cannot be exploited by the then world power GB, not even as its junior partner or subordinate junior partner, but rather should pursue a defensive strategy of exhaustion towards the British Empire, especially in cooperation with the modernizing China and more with a Eurasian orientation and does not allow itself to be driven into a confrontation with the new rising world power, the German Reich.
The following passage should be mentioned as a defining passage for the term “strategy of the dynamic defensive”:
“Beyond the far-reaching political turning points of the 20th century, the guiding ideas can be shown that were 100 years after the 3rd Anglo-Afghan War, 40 years after the invasion of Soviet troops in Afghanistan, 30 years after their withdrawal and 20 years after the entry of Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin to determine Russia’s geostrategy. It is historically sound, geopolitically oriented and focus on the Eurasian region. Because of its economic and demographic weaknesses, Moscow sees itself as being on the strategic defensive and is waiting until its main opponents, the USA and its European allies, politically, economically and militarily become exhausted. However, offensive action can be taken below the strategic level if possible and necessary. The prerequisite for this, however, is careful planning to be approved by the political leadership. It must provide for clear spatial and temporal limitations of the respective operations. If at all possible, it should be done covertly and by special forces, not by regular units.”
( Compare: Dr. Hans Ulrich Seidt „Years of Apprenticeship in the Hindu Kush: Continuity and Breakpoints of Russian Geostrategies “ in the Journal for Foreign and Security Policy ZFAS)
See also GR article “Russia’s Geostrategy of Strategic Patience, the Asian Pivot and its Chief Ideologist Karaganov” from October 1, 2018.
In a recent interview with SNA/Novostoi, Dr. Seidt, who saw a special status for the Donbass as a possible solution to the Ukraine crisis, claimed again:
“I have the impression that the Russian leadership very carefully evaluated the Soviet experience in Afghanistan and learned lessons from it. I also believe that Russia is and will remain a great Eurasian superpower, a Eurasian superpower between Saint Petersburg and Vladivostok, whose importance and scope for action, especially in the military sphere, extend far beyond its territory. In this respect, the potential is definitely there, and there is also the will to project power.(…) In the current situation, will the Russian leadership be content with demonstrating its military potential? From my point of view, that would indicate a well thought-out and carefully calculated strategic self-restraint on the part of the Russian leadership.”
Now, with the recognition of Donetsk and Lugansk, which will probably also be followed by the deployment of Russian troops, and then, as the next step, the occupation of the entire Donbass, Putin has apparently not fulfilled the expected self-restraint. Conversely, the theory is still correct to the extent that it is not yet a second Afghanistan and Russia has not yet occupied the whole of Ukraine and is waging war over it and was thus drawn into an occupation swamp ala Afghanistan. But that could well come.
General ret. Kujat sees Russian strategic thinking in a similar way to Dr. Seidt and they believe in Putin’s self-restraint to prevent a second Afghanistan as a lesson of history and that this thinking could be used to prevent a mega-invasion in Ukraine.
Navalny, on the other hand, believes that Putin will now really escalate, in Ukraine, then in Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Finland and the Baltic States. Putin was not the rational, coolly calculating chess player and strategist, but a 69-year-old senile old man who is surrounded by crooks. Alexey Navalny, Russia’s most famous opposition figure, is still in prison. But he also follows the latest events surrounding Putin and Ukraine from there. Now he spoke up via Twitter. This is the wording:
„Yesterday I watched the ‚Security Council meeting‘, that gathering of morons and crooks (it seems to me that our anti-corruption unit investigated every single one of them). And I thought of the imbeciles from the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union – who, similarly, on a whim, imagining themselves as geopoliticians at the ‚big chessboard‘, decided to send Soviet troops into Afghanistan.
„The demented old people around Putin don’t even have an ideology“
The result was hundreds of thousands of victims. Whole nations were injured. Russia and Afghanistan have not yet overcome the consequences. And it was eventually a catalyst for the breakup of the USSR. These morons from the office did so under the guise of a two-faced ideology. The demented old people around Putin don’t even have an ideology. They only have persistent and blatant lies. They don’t even bother to lend the slightest credibility to their invasion. Both the Politburo and Putin are concerned with one thing: to divert attention from the real problems of the Russians: the development of the economy, higher prices, the rule of lawlessness. That attention is drawn instead to imperialist hysteria.
When was the last time you watched the news on state television? I’m only watching that at the moment and I can assure you: there is no news from Russia. It’s only about Ukraine, USA, Europe. Pure propaganda is no longer enough for the senile crooks. you want blood They want to drive their tank figures over a map of hostilities. „A 69-year-old drunk grandfather running a country that has nuclear weapons“ And so, in the 21st century, the head of the Politburo gives a truly insane speech. I read the perfect metaphor on Twitter: ‚It was like the drunk grandfather at the family party bugging everyone about trying to explain how world politics really works.‘
That would be funny if the drunk grandfather weren’t a 69-year-old running a country that has nuclear weapons. In his speech, replace ‚Ukraine‘ with ‚Kazakhstan‘, ‚Belarus‘, ‚Baltic States‘, ‚Azerbaijan‘, ‚Uzbekistan‘ and so on, even with ‚Finland‘. And then think about where the train of his geopolitical thoughts might stop next.
“We are wasting a historic opportunity”
In 1979 it all ended very badly for everyone. And it’s going to end badly now too. Afghanistan was destroyed, but the USSR retained a mortal wound. Hundreds of Ukrainian and Russian citizens could now die because of Putin. Perhaps there will be tens of thousands in the future. He will not allow the Ukrainian to develop. He will drag it down into a swamp. But Russia will pay the same price. We have everything to develop tremendously in the 21st century. Oil. Well educated citizens. But we will waste our money and waste our historic opportunity to live a normal, rich life. For a war. For dirt. For the palace with golden eagles in Gelendzhik (Editor’s note: this is where Putin’s billion-dollar residence is supposed to be). „Putin and the senile crooks are the greatest enemies of Russia“ Putin and the other senile Security Council crooks are Russia’s enemies and its greatest threat. Not Ukraine or the West. Putin kills and wants to kill more. The Kremlin makes you poorer, not Washington. It’s not up to London that we’re pursuing an economic policy here that doubles prices. It’s up to Moscow.
To fight for Russia, to keep it, we must fight to see Putin and his kleptocrats lose their power. And that is also a ‚fight for peace‘.”
Trump, in turn, praises Putin as clever and clever and claims that this escalation would never have happened under his US presidency.
„Ukraine conflict: Trump full of praise for Putin’s actions – „brilliant“, „clever“, „smart“ Trump has described the Kremlin chief’s actions in the Ukraine crisis as „brilliant“ and „clever“. Regarding Putin’s recent decisions, the ex-US president said in a conservative radio talk show on Tuesday: „This is brilliant.“ The Russian president declared a large part of Ukraine independent and sent „peacekeeping troops“ there. „How smart is that?“ Trump explained. Referring to Putin, he said: „This is a man who is very smart. I know him very well.” The Russian President is “smart” and “savvy,” Trump continued. „This is the strongest peacekeeping force I’ve ever seen. There were more tanks than I have ever seen.” The US could use such a peacekeeping force on its southern border, Trump added in a subordinate clause – a reference to the arrival of large numbers of migrants from Central America at the US-Mexico border. In the White House, the right-wing populist Trump had taken a hard line on refugee and immigration policy – the construction of a border wall with Mexico was one of his prestige projects.(…)
Trump had previously criticized Biden’s course in the Ukraine crisis and claimed that if he were president, tensions with Russia would never have escalated to such an extent. No one has ever been harder on Russia, and he and Putin respected each other. Critics, on the other hand, had accused Trump of treating the Kremlin boss with kid gloves during his tenure. According to US investigative authorities, the Russian government interfered “in a comprehensive and systematic manner” in the 2016 US presidential election, from which Trump emerged victorious at the time. https://www.merkur.de/politik/ukraine-flict-putin-russia-trump-begeistert-vorvor-einmarsch-invasion-ex-us-praesident-91366713.html
It is probably true that Trump would probably not be averse to Ukraine’s neutrality, for example, and perhaps he would even recognize Donetsk and Lugansk and leave them to Putin. The question is, however, whether his questioning of the NATO Articles of Assistance and his erratic manner would not have encouraged Putin in the first place. The question also arises as to what part of Europe Trump would have been willing to sacrifice in a deal. with Putin and whether he would not even have gone into parts of the Russian draft treaty. Would Trump be willing to roll back NATO, also to keep Russia on his side or at least neutral in a Sino-American conflict? This question may arise in the event of re-election. soon again and possibly this has Putin and 2024 as a perspective.
Interesting comment also from Ulrich Reitz in Focus in his article “Anyone who thinks they can punish Putin is making a mistake”. His opinion: Subsequent sanctions are not a deterrent in advance, especially if they are also minor sanctions. He is also of the opinion that N2 is not off the table yet and that the operating license issue is more of a trick by Scholz to save the pipeline and take it out of the line of fire for the time being. But the West had forgotten how to think about geopolitical power as a result of the globalization hype and the peace dividend as well as deterrence. There was never an End of History.
In perspective, there is also the question of what will happen if Germany eliminates N2 and NATO’s 2% target is then realized.. Would then there be peace in the transatlantic relationship and Trump’s demands satisfied if he were re-elected or would he then insist on buying US weapons systems be an real ally? Buzzword F35 instead of European/German-French Joint Fighter. Would it then come to the next transatlantic dispute or to a Franco-German rift if Germany, like Australia, made a kind of submarine deal. And would this even be a guarantee that Trump would continue to take NATO seriously and not make a deal with Putin at the expense of the Europeans, just as he also sees the EU as an economic competitor “smaller but worse than China”, but as militarily and politically weak and working to dismantle them like Xi and Putin? General ret.. Domroese also said: “ „…much worse than anything else is the insignificance of the Europeans!!“