With all the news about Ukraine, it’s possible to talk more specifically about what the reversal of America’s World War II gains will look like.
Some months back, I asked whether the loss of Crimea constituted America’s Suez moment — a strategic loss that international diplomacy prevented the imperial power from stopping. The war has only gone worse for America’s ally as the months have gone by.
The two major US allies swinging in the Russian direction are Germany and China. It seems that almost no one in the American think tanks or the government proper fully understand what is at risk. One does, but the general opinion is more aligned towards the nonsensical American war narrative that calls for greater armaments for Ukraine, something that NATO military authorities and Merkel besides have undermined with their own rhetoric.
It’s not entirely clear what sort of rational justification that this war might have had, but the haphazard moral justification was that it was in favor of true democratic self-determination for Ukraine. None of you probably buy that justification, but it is something that both the mainstream left and right tend to believe in fervently. German intelligence leaked that it estimates that 50,000 people have died in the conflict already, but the US press continues to report false numbers.
The US is in a difficult situation: financially, morally, militarily, and diplomatically. The reckless wars, the international spying scandal, and more have made the US a more unreliable international partner. After World War II, Europe embraced the US as a necessary counterweight to the USSR. After 1991, the US tried to dominate both Eastern Europe and Russia in the same way that it had done further west. That policy is unraveling quickly due to over-reach, and forgetting that diplomacy has to go both ways.
The additionally silly thing is that the US is not even behaving like a rational power, in that most of its interventions do not serve any reasonable definition of the ‘American national interest.’ This is because the US has a corrupt government which alternately panders to factions of oligarchs and the masses of hungry people, while mollifying the productive minority with television and other forms of trash media.
This can’t last for much longer. What will give it the extra several pushes are the increasingly open repudiations by America’s former postwar allies.