European Suicide: The Economic War against Russia

The Goals of the German Federal Government and the Current Situation

The Federal Government dreams of a comprehensive integration of Ukraine into the EU and a prosperous post-war Ukraine. A “confidential memorandum” of the London School of Economics, commissioned jointly by the Foreign and Economic Ministries, envisages a driving private sector run reconstruction backed by active German industrial policy [Luke Cooper, After the Ukraine Recovery Conference 2023: Lessons and themes for 2024. Confidential Memo. London School of Economics, 2023]. Technology transfer should play a central role. The state protects the private sector’s risk—investments. The memo provides close cooperation with USAID and the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, which is close to the leading Social Democratic Party. According to the memo, reconstruction is in the interests of large German companies. So the plan is to set up an extended workbench in Ukraine as a low-wage country. But the dreams of a “new Singapore in Kiev” only show the government coalition in Berlin’s loss of reality [“A Singapore in Kiev”—that was the tenor of a confidential technical discussion at government level in autumn 2023]. Apparently, the external costs for the German taxpayer are not even evaluated.

That is why I want to present the economic consequences of the Ukraine war based on the studies and forecasts known so far. This includes the dimensions of war, the economic situation of Ukraine, the consequences of a possible EU-membership of Ukraine, the sanction’s impact on Russia, its impact on the German economy, the economic and geostrategic reasons for the Ukraine-war, winners and losers of a “European suicide” and the goverment’s options.

1. Dimensions of War

“War is never an isolated act,” wrote Carl von Clausewitz [On War, Book I, Chapter1, 7]. It must be seen in a political context. In addition to the military dimension, there is also the economic war and the propaganda battle.

1.1. Military Dimension

The military and geostrategic dimension refers to operations on the battlefield, i.e., what the British call “theater of war.” This also concerns the situation in Poland, the Baltics, Romania and around the Black Sea. The war in Gaza also interferes with the Ukraine-Russia conflict. This particularly addresses the Washington’s pressure to drag Germany ever deeper into this war. Soon it will probably be said: “Germans to the front!”—as was the case with the Boxer Rebellion in Quingdao (Tsingtau) in 1900. The discussion about the delivery of German “Taurus” cruise missiles is also ongoing. If the Ukrainians, as expected, attack the Kerch Bridge, this could trigger a massive escalation. What Clausewitz could not yet overlook at the beginning of the 19th century was the risk of nuclear confrontation. This is pointed out by US political scientist John J. Mearsheimer [“A Russian victory significantly reduces the threat of nuclear war, as nuclear escalation is most likely when Ukrainian forces achieve battlefield victories and threaten to recapture all or most of the territory Kiev lost to Moscow. The Russian leadership would certainly seriously consider using nuclear weapons to salvage the situation”], as well as experienced military officials, such as the former Inspector General of the Bundeswehr general Harald Kujat [“However, if one of the two sides assesses the situation differently, which is unlikely, such a wrong decision could have catastrophic consequences for the European continent. Because according to the current doctrines, each side would try to avert an impending conventional defeat through the first use of nuclear weapons”].

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told the EU Parliament on September 7, 2023 that Putin had proposed foregoing NATO expansion in exchange for not invading Ukraine. According to Stoltenberg, the Russian President sent NATO a draft treaty in autumn 2021 that NATO should sign:

“The background was that President Putin declared in the autumn of 2021, and actually sent a draft treaty that they wanted NATO to sign, to promise no more NATO enlargement. That was what he sent us. And was a pre-condition for not invade Ukraine. Of course, we didn’t sign that. The opposite happened. He wanted us to sign that promise, never to enlarge NATO. He wanted us to remove our military infrastructure in all Allies that have joined NATO since 1997, meaning half of NATO, all the Central and Eastern Europe, we should remove NATO from that part of our Alliance, introducing some kind of B, or second-class membership. We rejected that. So, he went to war to prevent NATO, more NATO, close to his borders” [Jean Stoltenberg: “Opening remarks” at the joint meeting of the European Parliament’s committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET) and the Subcommittee on Security and Defence (SEDE), followed by an exchange of views with Members of the European Parliament. September 7, 2023].

This means: Firstly, this is not an “unprovoked” war of aggression; NATO provoked him. Secondly, it is a proxy war that is essentially about NATO’s eastward expansion. Jens Stoltenberg said clearly:

“But then there is no other option for us than to ensure peace for NATO Allies, for EU members by investing in defence supporting Ukraine. Because if President Putin wins in Ukraine, it’s a tragedy for the Ukrainians, but it’s also dangerous for us. It sends a message that when they use military force, they get what they want, authoritarian leaders. So it’s in our security interest to support Ukraine, and therefore I’m extremely grateful for all the support that EU members the European Union and NATO Allies are providing to Ukraine.”

Especially after the peace talks in March and April 2022 in Istanbul, there is no longer any trust in Western politics in the Kremlin. To this day, the mainstream press in Germany denies that these negotiations took place. But you only had to read the US magazine “Foreign Affairs”. In September 2022, the magazine published an article co-authored by Fiona Hill. As a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, a former member of the National Security Council and as an advisor to three US presidents, Fiona Hill wrote:

“According to several former senior U.S. officials we spoke with, in April 2022, Russian and Ukrainian negotiators appeared to have tentatively agreed on the broad outlines of a negotiated interim solution: Russia would retreat to its February 23 position, when it controlled part of the Donbass region and all of Crimea, and in return Ukraine would promise not to seek NATO membership and instead receive security guarantees from a number of countries.”

Former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, who was also involved in the peace talks, commented: “But in the end nothing happened. My impression was: Nothing could happen because everything else had been decided in Washington.”

The West has prevented an agreement already initialed. This is simply what research shows. There are at least six different sources independent from each other for such an agreement ready to be signed, five of which were directly involved in the negotiation process. Member of the Kiev delegation, Aleksander Tschaly, also confirmed that an Istanbul communiqué on a peaceful settlement of the conflict had been initialed. International experts agree that, contrary to what US President Joe Biden promised, Ukraine is now in a significantly worse negotiating position. Kiev lost more territory than it regained during the so-called summer offensive.

In December 2023, Russian troops were advancing along the entire front: They captured the Mariinka fortress in front of Donetsk. Avdiivka northwest of Donetsk was surrounded. Bakhmut was conquered. In the north they were advancing on Slavyansk. However, a strategic initiative does not succeed. At the turn of 2023/24, Russia controlled around 18% of Ukrainian territory. Moscow is preparing for a long war. President Putin is firmly in the saddle and even stronger than ever, politically and militarily. A coup in Russia is not expected. The Kremlin’s goal remains “demilitarization,” “denazification” and “neutralization,” i.e., regime change in Kiev. Security Council Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said, Odessa, Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Mykolaev and Kiev were “Russian cities” Dmitry Medvedem on 28.12.2023: “1. Спецоперация продолжится, её целью останется разоружение украинских войск и отказ нынешнего украинского государства от идеологии неонацизма… Одесса, Днепропетровск, Харьков, Николаев, Киев – русские города, как и многие другие временно оккупированные. Все они пока ещё маркированы жёлто-голубым на бумажных картах и в электронных планшетах (“1. The special operation will continue, its goal will remain the disarmament of Ukrainian troops and the rejection of the current Ukrainian state from the ideology of neo-Nazism… 3. Odessa, Dnepropetrovsk, Kharkov, Nikolaev, Kyiv are Russian cities, like many other temporarily occupied ones. All of them are still marked in yellow-blue on paper maps and on electronic tablets”). Further war aims and territorial claims can be derived from this. Russia’s plan is to reach a comprehensive agreement with the West or to advance further towards the stated goals.

Ukraine controls the western part of the Black Sea and has secured a trade route through the Bosphorus. But the summer offensive collapsed. In Washington, wrote the Swiss military analyst Jacques Baud, this was clear from the very first moment. According to Baud, the entire war was never about success for Ukraine, but about weakening Russia in a battle of attrition.

In fact, Russia is waging a proxy war against NATO, which NATO is in danger of losing. Seymour Hersh quotes a senior US intelligence official:

The war is over. Russia has won. There is no Ukrainian offensive anymore, but the White House and the American media have to keep the lie going. The truth is if the Ukrainian army is ordered to continue the offensive, the army would mutiny. The soldiers aren’t willing to die any more, but this doesn’t fit the B.S. that is being authored by the Biden White House.

Nevertheless, no relent is expected in Washington. The military confrontation continues. The war has become a battle of attrition. The West is at war with Russia. The West pushed Ukraine to keep fighting. The conflict serves primarily the interests of the United States. Neither side will give in: Moscow sees NATO membership for Ukraine as an existential threat. Washington is committed to NATO membership for Ukraine, the reconquest of Russian-occupied territories and the goal of regime change in Moscow. Russian literature argues that the West is providing Ukraine with “strategic depth” through arms supplies, satellite data, training and financial aid. Dmitri Trenin, Member of the Council for Foreign and Defense Policy:

In fact, Ukraine plays the role of a spearhead with which the West wants to hit, weaken and, if successful, destroy Russia and destroy it in its current form. The current conflict has the potential for a direct armed conflict up to and including nuclear escalation. (Фактически Украина выполняет роль острия копья, которым Запад стремится поразить, ослабить, а если удастся – уничтожить Россию в её нынешнем виде. В отличие от прошлых времён – включая периоды Наполеоновских и двух мировых войн – Запад сейчас политически и идеологически выступает как единое целое. Россия и современный Запад – антагонисты. Нынешний конфликт чреват непосредственным вооружённым столкновением, вплоть до ядерной эскалации).

This de facto means that a compromise is impossible. But this war of attrition is not a stalemate. Russia clearly has the advantage on the war theatre and in the economic war. NATO lead Ukraine to defeat, and the West is trapped by its own involvement: underestimating the opponent is the best recipe for losing.

1.2. Propaganda War

The propaganda war is part of psychological warfare: NATO calls it “cognitive warfare”: “While actions are carried out in the five military domains (land, sea, air, space and cyber) in order to affect people, Cognitive warfare aims to use every human being as a weapon.” The goal is to exploit the weak points of the human brain and, through deep indoctrination, manipulate the human psyche in a way to make it “war-ready” and immunize it against rational considerations. The mainstream media plays a central role in this.

They demonize Putin, talk about “unprovoked” war of aggression and accuse Russia of being solely responsible for the war, discredit dissenting opinions and follow state propaganda. “The causes of the distorted representation of reality,” said the former Inspector General of the Bundeswehr, General Harald Kujat, “are the unreflective adoption of disinformation and, above all, incompetence and ideological delusion.” There is indeed a journalistic underground in a landscape of mendacious conformity [“An underground of journalism exists… in a landscape of mendacious conformity. Dissenting journalists have been defenestrated from the ‘mainstream’… the media’s task is to invert the truth and support the illusions of democracy, including ‘free press” (the late John Pilger)]. But the representatives of grass-roots media are mostly excluded. The job of the mainstream media is to distort the truth and maintain the illusion of democracy, a free press—and the Illusion of Ukraine’s potential victory.

The syncrisis of German journalism with NATO’s war propaganda is disconcerting, not only in view of the primitiveness of deep indoctrination and its postfactual structure, but even more due to the blind submission to its intolerant claim to exclusivity [“At its summit in Madrid in June, Nato, which is controlled by the United States, adopted a strategy document that militarises the European continent, and escalates the prospect of war with Russia and China. It proposes multi domain warfighting against nuclear-armed peer-competitor. In other words, nuclear war. It says: ‘Nato enlargement has been a historic success.’ I read that in disbelief. A measure of this ‘historic success’ is the war in Ukraine, news of which is mostly not news, but a one-sided litany of jingoism, distortion, omission. I have reported a number of wars and have never known such blanket propaganda.” John Pilger].

But this only shows the degree of self-alignment that extends from talk show hosts to media managers, from radio station directors to desk editors, from foreign correspondents to daily news reporters. By foregoing sober research and rational reasoning, they only differ from other academic henchmen of the elites by their aggressiveness. They only develop a falsifying killer instinct when they outlaw dissent. This exposes the media maker’s indignity. Both the public media and the corporate media are becoming, as the novelist Günter Grass once put it, “court jesters taking into account non-existent courts” (“Princeton-Rede,” p. 112)—the court jesters of NATO. The mainstream media lies by omission, shifts the population’s aggression about social grievances onto external enemies and thus sends people into war hysteria. They have become the central warmonger. [Mark Galliker, Patrik Baab and here, Roberto J. De Lapuente].

However, the propaganda media can only develop their effectiveness in cooperation with other ideological apparatuses. Because state apparatuses are not neutral, but rather ensure the conditions of capital’s reproduction. So they don’t protect people from the market, but the market from people. Like the repressive state apparatuses—judiciary, military and police—ideological state apparatuses such as schools, universities, NGOs, churches and media (even if they are organized privately or under public law) ensure that citizens are loyal to the state and to the market capitalist social order [Louis Althusser, “Idéologie et appareils idéologiques d’État.” La Pensée, No. 151, June 1970; also, Louis Althusser, Positions (Paris. Les Éditions sociales, 1976), pp. 67-125]. They function like communicating tubes.

In addition, the EU Commission is tightening censorship with the so-called “Media Freedom Act”. It actually takes over media supervision, although this is the responsibility of the member states. The EU Commission is already exercising censorship with the “Digital Services Act” and the “Code of Conduct to Combat Disinformation” from June 2022. Online platforms such as Meta, Google, Twitter, TikTok and Microsoft as well as many other players have joined in. They committed to mark providers who, in the Commission’s opinion, spread disinformation as unreliable, to block advertising revenue and to report this to the Commission. Such information must be deleted upon instruction from the Commission. This is the privatization of censorship.

1.3. Economic War

The third area is the economic war the USA, NATO and the EU have been waging against Russia since 2014. This includes the situation in Ukraine, the effects on Russia, the backfire effects in the EU and the particular impact on Germany.

2. The Economic Situation of Ukraine

The biggest loser of the war is Ukraine. The population has fallen from 52 million to 31 million since 1991. The war damage is immense. The population impoverished. The average wage has fallen from around 400 euros to 200 euros in 30 years as a result of Western integration. The West fights Russia at the expense of Ukraine.

Ukrainian losses are high. The sources now speak of a total of up to 500,000 men, which Stoltenberg did not deny in the European Parliament. A Ukrainian mobile phone provider has extrapolated from various estimates and information about deleted SIM cards that up to 400,000 Ukrainian soldiers may have already died. Deputy Chairwoman of the Rada’s Committee on National Security, Defense and Intelligence, Maryana Bezuhla, said that a Ukrainian soldier was wounded or killed every five minutes. That would correspond to a quota of 288 per day or 8640 per month. By December 2023, this would bring the total to 210,000 men in just over 22 months of war. These are clues; both sides keep the actual number of losses secret.

In July 2022, at the Ukraine Recovery Conference in Lugano, Switzerland, Ukraine estimated the cost of reconstruction at 750 billion euros. How high the actual amount will be is unclear because the war is going on.
Ukraine has three economic regions that converged in poverty before the start of the war, but also showed extreme divergence: the Rust Belt region in the center and the east, where industrial production fell sharply after the collapse of the Soviet Union and average wages fell by 80% compared to 1990. The service region in Kiev and Kharkiv, where a modern financial and digital sector developed, and in the south a strong sector with transport and logistic services from the Dnipro and to the Black Sea and to Sevastopol in Crimea. Then the agricultural regions in the industrially underdeveloped center with the fertile black earth soil.

Even during Soviet times, Ukraine played an important role in titanium and uranium. The manganese and iron ore reserves are among the largest in the world, as are the mercury ore deposits. This is also important for the EU:

In order to become independent of imports from Russia, shale gas is also important, especially as a transition technology and for future special applications such as fertilizer production. The importance of titanium is particularly noteworthy: currently Ukraine is one of five countries in the world producing titanium ore mineral concentrates (ilmenite5 and rutile6). More than 30 titanium deposits, some in production and some explored in detail, are located on the territory of Ukraine.

In terms of agricultural potential, Ukraine is one of the richest countries in the world and one of the leading producers and exporters. Ukraine’s arable land is three times larger than that of Poland and Romania. In 2021, it covered a total of 32.9 million hectares and in 2023, an estimated 27.9 million hectares due to the consequences of the war.

The industrial potential is also great, there are a number of specialized industries, e.g. for rocket engines and high-performance turbines. As a steel producer, Ukraine had plants such as Azov and Ilyich in Mariupol, Zaporizhstal in Zaporizhia, Kryvorizhstal in Dnipropetrovsk, Dneprospetstal in the Dnipro region, Khartsyzsk Pipe Plant in Donetsk, Dnipropetrovsk Metal Plant in Dnipro, Yenakiieve Metallurgical Plant in the Donetsk Region, Nikopol Pipe Plant LLC in the Dnipropetrovsk region, Avdiiv Coke chemical plant near Donetsk and Dnipropetrovsk Metallurgical Combine in the Dnipro region and is an important world player.

Ukraine’s well-developed pipeline infrastructure is also suitable for transporting hydrogen and could be used in the future to supply customers within the country and the EU. The power grid is highly integrated and has provided many workarounds for destroyed connections during Russian attacks. From the Soviet era, Ukraine has inherited an efficient energy system with nuclear power plants, thermal power plants and hydroelectric power plants, which, however, needs to be modernized. The nuclear power plants are Soviet-design pressurized water reactors in Rivne (four units commissioned in 1980, 1981, 1896 and 2004), Khmelnitsk (2 units in 1987 and 2004), southern Ukraine (3 units, 1982, 1985 and 1989) and Zaporizhia ( 6 blocks, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1989 and 1995). Nuclear power supplies about half of the electricity. Thermal and hydroelectric power plants also play an important role. In order to achieve its sustainability goals, Ukraine needs foreign investments, especially in solar panels and wind turbines.

Ukraine has the world’s largest reserves of commercially viable iron ore—30 billion tons, which is a fifth of the world total. There are also large natural gas and oil deposits that are still largely undeveloped, and 4 percent of the world’s coal reserves.

The World Bank has examined the events of the first year of the war and said that the Russian invasion “has taken an unimaginable toll on the people of Ukraine and the country’s economy, whose activity fell by a staggering 29.2% in 2022.” They estimates that damages exceed $135 billion and that about $411 billion will be needed to rebuild Ukraine. The poverty rate “rose from 5.5% in 2021 to 24.1% in 2022, pushing 7.1 million more people into poverty and undoing 15 years of progress.” 62 cities were destroyed, approximately 8 million Ukrainians have fled the country, and there are around 7 million internally displaced people. The United Nations confirmed 8,490 civilian deaths but believes the actual number is “significantly higher.”

In the end, Ukraine will be divided. The Russian-occupied territories are not returning. Where exactly the demarcation line will run is unclear. The Russians try to advance further either to Odessa or northeast of the Dnieper. Russian troops are unlikely to reach the Curzon Line according to the Treaty of Versailles, which was confirmed with some corrections as the Polish-Soviet demarcation line of the Peace of Riga in 1921. It lies well west of Kiev and, after the Yalta Conference, represents today’s eastern border of Poland. The Curzon Line ran well west of Kiev.

Clearing the minefields and cluster munitions alone is likely to cost billions. The LSE also estimates the cost of reconstruction at $411 billion, which is 2.5 times higher than the country’s gross national product. Instead, Ukraine’s resources are likely to be withdrawn from the public sector and privatized. With the entry of Blackrock as a debt and reconstruction manager, the country is de facto falling into the hands of a locust.

Exiled Ukrainian opposition leader Viktor Medvedchuk describes Ukraine as “a European Somalia.” The country is on a list of the most dangerous places in the world. He pointed to forced conscriptions, the destruction of monuments linked to Russia, the media’s aggressive anti-Russian rhetoric, the torture: “All of this happened at the behest of the West, and billions were spent on it, which Western politicians openly admitted.”

3. Consequences of Admitting Ukraine into the EU

In 2023, Ukraine received more than 38 billion euros in international financial aid. This was the only way the country could survive financially and bear the costs of the war—around 120 million euros per day. Nevertheless, the West is divided on the question of further aid. Larger aid packages have been temporarily blocked by Hungary in the EU and by Republicans in the US Congress. That is why Washington is putting increasing pressure on Western countries to seize Russia’s foreign assets of around $300 billion to Ukraine. Moscow has already announced that it will also confiscate foreign, including German, assets in Russia in this case. This would alleviate the West’s financing problems in supporting Ukraine, but would likely come primarily at the expense of EU countries. In Russia, such a seizure is described as “theft,” which will further erode trust in the West and thus “further stimulate the process of de-dollarization and de-Westernization of the planet.” The USA, “which has not succeeded in bringing most of the world under its control,” is prepared to “sacrifice Europe to save itself.” [При этом данные 300 миллиардов во многом виртуальны, а в реальности заполучить удастся куда меньшие суммы. Зато можно быть уверенным в том, что конфискация только подстегнет процесс дедолларизации и девестернизации планеты, поскольку от Запада начнут отгребать еще энергичнее все страны, которые имеют хоть минимальный выбор… Правда, возникает вопрос: а неужто официальные лица в Вашингтоне, Берлине, Париже, Брюсселе и далее по списку не понимают всех этих очевидных обстоятельств? Есть подозрение, что понимают, но в складывающихся обстоятельствах считают это наилучшим из наихудших решений. Во-первых, ухудшающееся экономическое положение вынуждает Запад искать любые возможные источники финансирования, например, Киева. Конфискованные российские активы, до которых удастся реально дотянуться, дадут возможность закрыть данную статью расходов на год-другой. (At the same time, the 300 billion is largely virtual, and in reality it will be possible to get much smaller sums. But we can be sure that confiscation will only spur the process of de-dollarization and de-westernization of the planet, as all countries that have at least a minimal choice will begin to shovel even more vigorously from the West… However, the question arises: do officials in Washington, Berlin, Paris, Brussels and further down the list not understand all these obvious circumstances? It is suspected that they do, but in the current circumstances they consider this to be the best of the worst solutions. First, the deteriorating economic situation is forcing the West to look for any possible sources of funding for Kiev. Confiscated Russian assets, which can be realistically grabbed, will make it possible to cover this item of expenditure for a year or two), Irina Alksnis].

In Brussels’ EU administration, financial aid for Ukraine totaling 77.1 billion euros had been accumulated since January 24, 2022. There is also humanitarian aid worth 2.1 billion euros and military support worth 5.6 billion euros. Over the course of 2023, the willingness to continue for helping Ukraine to the same extent as before began to crumble. Slovakia announced that it would stop arms deliveries, and there were protests in Poland because Ukrainian grain and Ukrainian drivers were entering the market at low wages. Hungary temporarily refused to release the next 50 billion euros for Ukraine.

After the failed summer offensive, Kiev should now be kept happy with the official prospect of joining the EU. But this is likely to cost the EU dearly. The German Economic Institute (IW) assumes that Ukraine would receive extensive financial resources from the EU budget. The institute estimates the financial impact of Ukraine’s full membership in the EU on the EU’s current multi-year budget at around 130 to 190 billion euros. Of this, between 70 and 90 billion euros would go to agricultural subsidies and between 50 to 90 billion euros to cohesion policy. For comparison: The EU’s multi-year community budget for the years 2021-2027 amounts to 1,216 billion euros. The scientists comment:

Given this volume, the EU should be ready to reform. Only in this way can the political decision be credible to bind Ukraine more closely to itself with the prospect of accession. This applies on the one hand at the institutional level, but it also applies at the fiscal level. A shift in the EU budget could help provide the necessary financial resources.

Cohesion policy assumes that redistribution should take place between richer and poorer EU countries. The Cologne economists propose to concentrate resources on poorer countries. Then around 140 billion euros would be available for Ukraine over a seven-year period. If you add cohesion and agricultural subsidies, then Ukraine would be entitled to an amount of 127-187 billion euros based on the multi-year budget 2021-2027. This cannot be done without reallocating or increasing the budget. The richer states would either have to pay more or forego benefits.

If the EU is expanded to include Ukraine, there is a risk of massive social cuts, large-scale farmers dying and massive downward pressure on wages in all EU countries. As a result, it is possible that the EU will collapse. French MPs have already warned that it would be best to leave the EU as quickly as possible. The British say: “The EU will last as long as the Germans pay.” The majority of the war burden and the costs of reconstruction will end up with the German taxpayer. The federal government has not evaluated this either.

In East Saxony’s Pirna there are 12 huge, new granaries. Grain from Poland and Ukraine is delivered there by truck. From Pirna, deliveries are sent by train to the processing industry in Hamburg and other places. This shows the problem. If Ukraine joins the EU and the customs barriers fall, the European market will be flooded with cheap Ukrainian agricultural products. Comparatively low labor costs, the fertile black earth soil and the opening of the Ukrainian market for genetically modified seeds as well as large-scale industrial production by companies such as Monsanto, Elli Lilly, Cargill and John Deere enable an unrivaled range of agricultural products. The land grab by foreign corporations in Ukraine means that farmers across the EU are coming under pressure because they can no longer produce at market prices. This will lead to further concentration in agriculture and farms dying out.

The Polish Minister of Agriculture Robert Telus imposed an import ban on Ukrainian grain from September 15, 2023, thereby entering into a dispute with the EU: “Ukrainian agriculture represents a threat to the agriculture of neighboring countries, but also to the whole of Europe.” He points out that Ukraine increased its overland grain exports from 7.3 million tons to 9.6 million tons during the embargo. Kiev defends the interests of large domestic companies. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán indicated what these are. He explained that the blocked Ukrainian grain was actually more likely to be a US commercial product, because the land on which it is grown “has probably been in the hands of the USA for a long time. Ukrainian agricultural products destined for Africa are flooding Central European markets. The bureaucrats in Brussels are once again turning a blind eye to the problems of local farmers.” US agricultural companies such as Monsanto have invested heavily in Ukrainian black earth soil. On the most fertile soil in the world, they can produce at unrivaled prices using genetically modified seeds and cheap labor. Economist Ernst Wolff: “We are currently experiencing a frontal attack on German medium-sized businesses.” Behind these agricultural giants such as Monsanto, John Deere and Elli Lilly are large financial investors such as Blackrock, that are also invested in the arms industry. They make money both from the war and the deaths of farmers.

Ukraine is not expected to join the EU in the short term. But Washington is increasing pressure for passing the costs of the war can on to the Union. Then Europe will collapse into a collection of failed states—a kind of co-transformation as a consequence of the Ukraine war. An impoverishment of the entire EU and harsh social cuts will follow. A break-up of the EU cannot be ruled out. Europe is becoming not only Washington’s backyard, but also Moscow’s backyard. This shows that US imperialism is a dead end for Europe.

4. The Effect of Sanctions on Russia

In response to the war of aggression against Ukraine, which violates international law, the EU has imposed unprecedented sanctions. They complement the existing measures that have been initiated since 2014 due to the accession of Crimea to the Russian Federation. So far twelve packages include sanctions against individuals, economic sanctions and visa measures. They apply to 1,950 institutions and people, including President Putin, Foreign Minister Lavrov, commanders of the Wagner Group, oligarchs, officials, military personnel and “anti-Ukrainian propagandists,” as well as banks, companies and parties. The economic sanctions affect, among other things, exports of advanced technology, vehicles, the energy sector and goods that can also be used for military purposes, as well as imports into the EU of petroleum products, coal, steel, gold and diamonds. Services such as auditing, IT consulting, legal advice, software and engineering services may no longer be provided. The oil import stop applies to sea routes with exceptions and affects 90% of Russian deliveries. A cap on oil prices was set at $60 per barrel. Transport by EU ships is prohibited. By the end of 2023, 12 sanctions packages were in force.

Even before the invasion, there were 2,695 sanctions against Russian private individuals, companies or state bodies. Since February 22, 2022, 12,077 new punitive measures have been added. The most serious factors were certainly the exclusion of Russian banks from the global financial communications system SWIFT and the confiscation of Russian assets worth around $300 billion. But the sanctions create the breeding ground on which alternative structures for circumvention emerge. By the end of 2022, the German government had no information about the effect of the sanctions. The effect of the first eleven sanctions packages has apparently evaporated: The Financial Times reports that almost no Russian oil is sold below the price cap of 60 USD, but world market prices of more than 80 USD are paid for it. Oil and gas revenues account for more than 28% of Russian state revenue.

Russia has now expanded its transport capacities. A large proportion of oil and gas is now transported via the northern route, even in winter. Russia is the only country to have two nuclear-powered icebreakers. The loading capacities in the ports of Primorsk, Vysotsk and Petersburg are utilized. A new gas liquefaction plant is currently being built in the westernmost Russian Baltic Sea port of Ust-Luga.

Industrial warfare, according to former director of the Royal United Services Institute Michael Clarke, is a war between societies. The Russian military budget, he estimates, has tripled since 2021 and will amount to around 30% of government spending in 2024. Russia has proven to be surprisingly weak militarily, but significantly stronger economically than the West expected. [“Because it’s true, the Third World War has begun. True, it started ‘small’ and with two surprises. We went into this war with the idea that Russia’s army was very powerful and its economy very weak. We thought that Ukraine would be crushed militarily and that Russia would be crushed economically by the West. But the opposite happened. Ukraine was not crushed militarily, even though it had lost 16% of its territory by then; Russia was not crushed economically. As I speak, the rouble has gained 8% against the dollar and 18% since the start of the war.” Emmanuel Todd].

The sanctions against Russia have so far largely failed to have any effect. Russia has prepared itself for a war of attrition that will last for years. Moscow wants to advance slowly and exhaust Ukraine in order to dash the West’s hopes of a Ukrainian victory. Putin is still seeking a fundamental security agreement with the West.

At first, the West’s calculations seemed to work: the ruble was in free fall and the stock market practically came to a standstill. However, after initial losses of more than 40% of its value, the Russian currency recovered and reached higher values than before the beginning of the war. In 2022, Russian economy contracted by 2.2%; in January 2024, the IMF forecast growth for 2024 of 2.4%. According to an economic survey by the Russian Central Bank, the average growth forecast for 2023 was 3.1%. Analysts only expected 1.3% for 2024.

Nevertheless, according to a study of the Canadian Central Bank, the standard of living in Russia is falling. However, the analysis shows that these welfare losses are significantly mitigated and the boomerang effects on the sanctioning countries are intensified when third countries such as China, India and Turkey do not play along. These countries benefit: “Our welfare analysis demonstrates that the sanctioned country’s welfare losses are significantly mitigated, and the sanctioning country’s losses are amplified, if the third country does not join the sanctions, but the third country benefits from not joining” (Ghironi, et al.). Therefore, the West can only hope that the measures will have a long-term effect: that there is a lack of investment from abroad and the capital flight from Russia continues. But at best this will slow the growth of the Russian economy.

The sanctions were aimed at cutting off Russia from the international financial system and depriving the country of hundreds of billions in foreign exchange assets in order to make foreign trade impossible for Moscow. But there was an almost complete de-dollarization of Russian trade. Moscow switched to paying in the local currencies of its international partners, primarily China and India. In this way, Russian industry was able to maintain its production level in the first ten months of 2022 and recorded growth in November and December. Even stronger growth is expected for 2023. Nobody would have expected Russia to surpass Germany and Great Britain in economic growth. The sanctions have made Russia the strongest European economy.

Russia is an energy self-sufficient country and has many of the world’s most important raw materials such as oil and natural gas. Moscow also has a dominant position on world markets and is the leading exporter of fertilizers and food. Despite Western sanctions, 80% of the planet is expanding its cooperation with Russia. Giants like China and India are increasing Russian energy imports. The European Council on Foreign Relations found in a study: The West is united but separated from the rest of the world.

There is always talk in the West that Russia has not set up its own microchip production and is dependent on Western and Asian imports for microelectronics. But the West’s sanctions are not effective here either: The import volume of CNC (computer numerical control) machines from China, which are also used in the military sector, has increased tenfold—Customs declarations increased by 6.5 million US dollars in February 2022 to $68 million in July 2023. Chinese machines replaced European imports.

In fact, eyewitnesses report that truckloads of digital technology from China and Taiwan are being imported to the Russian-Kazakh border—from Polish and Lithuanian trucking companies. But with microchips the dependency is mutual. The West has the know-how, but not the necessary raw materials. For example, according to a survey by market research group Techcet, the US must import 90% of semiconductor-grade neon from Ukraine, while 35% of the palladium it needs comes from Russia. This means that the US chip industry is dependent on materials from Russia and Ukraine. So Russia can put as much pressure on the American semiconductor industry as the other way around. That is why Washington is investing in diversifying supply chains and Russia is investing in expanding manufacturing:

The US government has warned domestic chipmakers that they could face a materials supply crunch, reports Reuters, citing “people familiar with the matter.” The warning is based on worries about the potential for conflict between Russia and Ukraine. If Russia does make military advances, there will almost certainly be impacts on industries in Ukraine. Moreover, US sanctions will be implemented on Russia, likely exacerbating supply issues. Some concerning numbers, highlighting the reliance of the US chipmaking industry on Russia/Ukraine-based materials, are shared by the source. For example, market research group Techcet says that 90% of US semiconductor-grade neon supplies come from Ukraine, while 35% of US palladium is sourced from Russia. In addition, other vital materials like C4F6, Helium, and Scandium also come from the flashpoint region… For the potential scale of resource material price increases facing chipmakers, we only need to turn our clocks back to 2014, when Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine. At that time, neon prices rose nearly 600%. Neon is used in semiconductor fabricating machine lasers (Mark Tyson, and also Semiconductors and Changing face of war).

Russia knows, according to French historian Emmanuel Todd, that World War III has already begun. As the military analyst Jacques Baud rightly points out, there has been a sophisticated philosophy of war in Russia since Soviet times, which also includes economic and political considerations. That is why the sanctions against Russia since 2014 have had a double effect. First, the Kremlin realized that this would not be a short-term problem, but a long-term opportunity. They encouraged Russia to increasingly produce previously imported goods itself. Second, it became clear to Moscow that the West would increasingly use economic weapons to set the country under pressure. So Russia had to strengthen its economic self-sufficiency:

This is why the sanctions applied to Russia in 2014 had a double positive effect. The first was the realization that they were not only a short-term problem, but above all a medium- and long-term opportunity. They encouraged Russia to produce goods it had previously preferred to buy ubroad. The second was the signal that the West would increasingly use economic weapons as a means of pressure in the future. It therefore became imperative, for reasons of national independence and sovereignty, to prepare for more far-reaching sanctions affecting the county’s economy (Jacques Baud).

Russia is far from emerging from this war weakened. On the contrary, it appears to be strengthened militarily and economically. General Christopher Cavoli, the US Supreme Commander in Europe (SACEUR), told a US Congressional committee: “Russia’s air, naval, space, digital and strategic capabilities have not suffered significant degradation during this war” (General Christopher Cavoli).

Russia is strategically turning away from Europe. This means that a city like St. Petersburg loses its historical function. An intellectual opposition to this is forming in the metropolitan areas. The country lacks foreign investment and a broader digital economy, meaning future economic development is severely slowed. Ukraine expert Nikolai N. Petro from Staten Island University summarizes:

So, for the West, we can see clearly, that they under-estimated, they really didn’t understand what Russia had achieved at all… The Russian leadership, they were surprised when their efforts to support the Ruble and to engage in import substitution succeeded so quickly. They thought it would work, they had done some preliminary testings, but they didn’t expect that there may be so much speed and flexibility in the Russian economy to switch from old producers to new producers, first of all. And secondly, particularly the willingness of so many non-state actors, in some cases state actors like Iran and China, and North Korea, and Venezuela, but also non-state actors to skirt the impact of sanctions. And so as a result, the West got into, what is essentially a “losing game” (Nikolai N. Petro).

Russia was not “destroyed by sanctions,” as US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen promised. Instead, the country’s economy has grown. The Commander-in-Chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, General Valery Zalushny, even stated that the capabilities of the Russian military industry are increasing, despite the introduction of unprecedented sanctions. There is no uprising against the war in Russia, Putin’s popularity is not declining, and Russia is far from diplomatically isolated, as shown by the weak response to boycott calls and the growing interest in Russian-favored organizations such as BRICS.

5. The Impact on the German Economy

In the end, the West will have to pay the price of the war it provoked. But there is an important limitation. In April and May 2022, the US Senate and House of Representatives passed the so-called “Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022”. This new version of the 1941 Lend-Lease Agreement authorizes the President to expeditiously comply with all requests for all existing U.S. equipment from Ukraine and Ukraine’s NATO states. Returns or payments due will not be an issue for another five years. But then most of the weapons will be destroyed. In doing so, Washington has driven Ukraine into a long-term debt trap worth double-digit billions, from which it can hardly escape on its own. The European Union will foot the bill. Ukraine, which is already effectively bankrupt, has been kept afloat financially by the EU and the International Monetary Fund since the 2014 Maidan coup.

For the United States, this arms aid is a bomb deal in the long term. Already after the Maidan, the United States did not transfer its own money, but instead issued bank guarantees. These secured loans amounted to 113 billion euros in 2022 and 2023. This means that the USA does not have to pay a cent as long as Ukraine can service the loans it received from banks, especially from the IMF, on the basis of US guarantees. This money, in turn, came from the EU, either in the form of loans or in the form of economic aid, which Ukraine does not have to pay back. The IMF loans were subject to strict conditions. It was also about the privatization of state property—i.e., the selling off of silverware, e.g. mining rights or black earth soil. US companies have benefited from this. The principle, according to Thomas Röper: “The USA gives guarantees, the US companies earn money and the EU pays the bill.”

The EU and its member states have pledged a total of around 135 billion euros in short and medium-term aid for Ukraine from the start of the war to the end of July 2023, and the USA has pledged almost 70 billion euros. This shows that Washington has increasingly succeeded in holding the EU accountable. When it comes to bilateral aid, Germany is now the second largest supporter of Ukraine after the United States: from the start of the war until the end of October 2023, the United States provided 71.4 billion euros, followed by Germany with a total of 38.3 billion euros including investments on EU aid.

In addition, the EU states also deliver weapons to Ukraine, which they have to replace. A large portion of these orders go to the US defense industry. Orders from US defense companies doubled in 2022 compared to the previous year. In 2021, the US government approved a total of 14 major arms sales to NATO countries worth a total of $15.5 billion. By the end of 2022, there were 24 approved exports worth $28 billion. In short, one could say: the losses are socialized and Germanized, the profits are privatized and Americanized.

With the adoption of the 2 percent target, all NATO states must increase their defense spending to two percent of GDP by 2024. For Germany, this means defense spending of around 80 billion euros, almost 30 billion euros more than in 2023. In addition, the federal government has taken out a “special fund” of loans worth 100 billion euros, which is to be spent on armaments purposes. A large part of this money goes to the US defense industry, e.g., for the overpriced F-35 breakdown jet.

In the medium term, the USA will shift the burden of the war and reconstruction onto the EU. The costs of the Ukraine war are gigantic. Jens Berger from the online-magazine Nachdenkseiten puts the total costs of German war policy in May 2023 at 577.4 billion euros. By the middle of the year, every German household was burdened with the war to the tune of 14,000 euros. Further social cuts are pending. At the cabinet meeting in December 2023, savings of 200 million euros in the education sector and 800 million euros in civil international engagement as well as tax increases were decided to cover the “unexpectedly” budget gap of 30 billion euros. At the same time, the military aid for Ukraine amounting to 8 billion euros should remain untouched and be increased, if necessary.

In 2023, the Federal Republic of Germany was the worst-performing industrialized country in the world. Both the IMF and the EU expect its economy to continue to shrink. Economists see Germany in a downward spiral: “Germany will not go down with a big bang. Rather, we will experience a state of infirmity, as has been the case in Italy for around 20 years.” A decisive factor in this is that the energy trap has been closed for Germany with the blowing up of the Nord Stream pipelines.

According to researcher Seymour Hersh, the destruction of Nord Stream is attributable to the USA. This is supported by the regular announcements of such a measure from American politicians. Here are some examples:

Then-US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in 2020: “To stop the energy cooperation between Europe and Russia) A first step would involve stopping Nord Stream-2.”

US Senator Tom Cotton in 2021: “There is still time to stop it… Kill Nord Stream 2 now, and let it rust beneath the waves of the Baltic.”

Jake Sullivan, US National Security Advisor in 2022: “We have made clear to the Russians that pipeline is at risk if they move further into Ukraine.”

Senator Ted Cruz in 2022: “The pipeline must be stopped and the only way to prevent its completion is to use all the tools available to do that.”

US President Joe Biden, standing next to Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz in 2022: “There will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it.”

Victoria Nuland, Undersecretary of State for Policy: “I want to be very clear: If Russia invades Ukraine one way or another, Nord Stream 2 will not move forward.”

After the Nord Stream 2 was sabotaged, former Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorsky tweeted: “Thank you, USA.” The very next day, leading politicians from Poland, Norway and Denmark were present to open the new Norwegian-Polish Baltic Sea pipeline as an alternative to Nord Stream.

Nuland expressed her enthusiasm. “I am, and I think the government is too, very pleased to know that Nord Stream 2 is now, as they say, a pile of metal at the bottom of the sea.”

The Washington Post’s White House correspondent and confidante of Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, David Ignatius, described in May 2022 that US President Biden and then-Chancellor Angela Merkel had decided in early summer 2021 to seize Nord Stream 1 and 2 in the event of a Russian attack to cancel:

Germany has been a reluctant but indispensable ally, and the Biden administration made a controversial decision last summer to win Germany’s support. Biden waived a first round of sanctions against a company that built the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, in return for a commitment from Chancellor Angela Merkel that Nord Stream 2 would be canceled in the event of a Russian invasion. When the invasion came, Merkel was no longer there, but her successor Olaf Scholz kept the promise.

Germany is by far the biggest loser from the sanctions against Russia. Economically, they have a boomerang effect. The Federal Republic can neither replace Russian gas and oil at similarly competitive prices nor the huge Russian market. The impact of the sanctions has not been evaluated. The federal government misjudged the impact of the economic war. Cheap Russian natural gas must be replaced by expensive and ecologically problematic American fracking gas. Exploding energy prices are deteriorating the competitiveness of the German economy. The hasty decoupling from the Russian market and its resources plunged the economy into recession. BRICS observers speak of a “reversal of the German economic miracle”:

Germany is by far the biggest loser in this case, as its industrial might has experienced an unprecedented unraveling, almost a sort of reverse of what was once called the “German economic miracle” in the aftermath of the Second World War. Berlin wrongfully assessed Moscow’s resilience as it anticipated that launching the unparalleled sanctions war against Russia will actually work.

The sanctions act like a boomerang and destroy not the Russian, but the German economy. All business associations have warned against de-industrialization. ZF Saarbrücken has announced that it will cut up to 7,000 jobs from 10,000. BASF is cutting 2,600 jobs, including 700 at the main plant in Ludwigshafen. These are just two examples, but they represent a comprehensive process of de-industrialization. The former economic engine Germany is also dragging its partner countries into recession. The entire EU is on the path to de-industrialization and permanent impoverishment.

In particular, medium-sized businesses are the ones who suffer from this development. The Leibnitz Institute for Economic Research in Halle confirms that the number of bankruptcies continued to rise in October. Researchers tallied more than 1,000 bankruptcies, 2% more than in September and 44% more than in October of the previous year.

According to the current poverty report from the Paritätischer Wohlfahrtsverband, the poverty rate in Germany was already 16.9% in 2021. This means that 14.1 million people were living in poverty even before the war. The trend is also increasing as a result of the war. The transformation from a welfare state to an arms state is progressing. The focus of political argumentation is no longer social balance, but rather the creation of war capability.

Immigration pressure from Ukraine also continues. In October 2023, 1.16 million Ukrainian refugees were counted. However, they partly do not come from their mother country, but from the Netherlands and other neighboring countries and immigrate into the social systems. In Ukraine the minimum wage is 1.41 euros. There is no incentive to return to a poor, war-ravaged country. There is considerable social explosiveness lurking in all of these points. The growing dissatisfaction with the federal government’s policies and their social consequences is grist for the AfD’s mill.

Russian Security Council’s Scientific board member Sergei Karaganov said in an interview with Rossiyskaya Gazeta:

Russia has completed its European journey… The European and especially the German elites are in a state of historical failure. The foundation of their 500-year dominance—the military superiority on which the West’s economic, political and cultural dominance was built—has been stripped away from them. Current Western elites cannot cope with the plethora of problems growing in their societies . These include a shrinking middle class and increasing inequality. Almost all of their initiatives have failed. The European Union is moving… slowly but surely towards disintegration. For this reason, European elites have shown a hostile attitude towards Russia for about 15 years. They need an external enemy.

Sergei Karaganov follows the official Russian line, which he helps shape in a responsible position. Nevertheless, his description of the shrinking middle class, a growing inequality and massive centrifugal forces within the EU is correct. The fact that Moscow is turning away from Europe is likely to have consequences that will hit Europe much harder than Russia. All of these trends represent social explosives that could easily push Europe and Germany to the brink of ungovernability.

Washington will shift the burden of war and reconstruction onto the EU. The result is a three-digit billion sum. The USA has concluded “land and lease” agreements with Ukraine based on the model of the Second World War for arms deliveries. Ukraine still has to pay for the borrowed weapons. These are billions. US Senator James Vance recently asked pointedly why one should believe that the $61 billion planned in Joe Biden’s budget will help Ukraine win when the $111 billion paid so far has not brought a breakthrough. These are the previous dimensions, and the costs of reconstruction are not included.

Overall, the war in Ukraine brings about a redistribution of the capital earned for Germany from bottom to top and from Europe to America.

6. Economic and Geostrategic Reasons for War

The Soviet Union tried to create a European peace order as early as the 1950s. This was rejected by the West. Irish historian Geoffrey Roberts has discovered documents showing that Soviet Foreign Minister Molotov proposed the USSR join NATO. The reason was the Soviet campaign for a European security order as an alternative to the European Defense Community. The proposal also included the idea of a reunified, neutral Germany. The West rejected this for two reasons: Firstly, the proposal only granted the USA and China observer status. Secondly, the West suspected that the proposal was only intended to weaken NATO’s cohesion and prevent the establishment of the EDC.

However, this rejection is an early part of the United States’ strategy to implement regime change in the Soviet Union and currently in Russia. DIA Director General Vincent R. Stewart quoted a document before the US Congress in 2017, showing that Washington was well aware of how much Moscow perceived regime change efforts as a threat:

The Kremlin is convinced the United States is laying the groundwork for regime change in Russia, a conviction further reinforced by the events in Ukraine. Moscow views the United States as the critical driver behind the crisis in Ukraine and the Arab Spring and believes that the overthrow of former Ukrainian President Yanukovych is the latest move in a long-established pattern of U.S.-orchestrated regime change efforts, including the Kosovo campaign, Iraq, Libya, and the 2003–05 “color revolutions” in Georgia, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan (Vincent R. Stewart, pp. 15ff).

The West is acting side by side in Ukraine, but not as one. With the aim of weakening and dividing Russia, as long-time US security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski suggested in the 1990s, the current generation of European politicians is following the US-Neocons. The federal government is also actively helping to drive a wedge between Germany and Russia. The German government is trying to save its leadership role within the EU by remaining loyal to the United States. In doing so, Berlin has further damaged German-French cooperation and destroyed its effectiveness, which was still working when they jointly rejected the Second Iraq War in 2003. Washington, on the other hand, is increasingly dividing the European Union along the Vilnius-Warsaw-Kiev axis, thereby forcing an eastward shift of political and military weight towards new anti-Russian front lines.

The EU wants to get access to the Ukrainian mineral resources (lithium), the black earth soil, the sea routes, the sales markets, the cheap labor. If the West breaks away from Russia and China equally, then the EU will need Ukrainian rare earths, for example, for its decarbonization strategy. Conversely, large US agricultural companies are concerned with controlling the food chain. Monsanto, Elly Lilly, John Deere etc. have bought into the Ukrainian black earth soil. They own an area larger than the entire agricultural area of Italy. These are the most fertile soil in the world. The EU and USA have enforced the use of genetically modified seeds. This guarantees maximum productivity in the short term at minimum wages. Not only the Americans, but also the Europeans are dependent on Ukraine’s mineral resources.

The member of the Bundestag of the Christian Democratic Party and his parliamentary group’s military expert, Roderich Kiesewetter, revealed what it was really about. In the program “Report from Berlin Extra” he explained that the war in Ukraine is a proxy war not only for NATO, but also for Germany, which is essentially about natural resources:

If Europe wants to complete the energy transition, it needs its own lithium deposits. The largest lithium deposits in Europe are in the Donetsk-Lugansk region… So we also have completely different goals in the background here. And that’s why we need one. The combined efforts of citizens to ensure that our politicians have the backing to do more for Ukraine (Alexej Danckwardt).

Kiesewetter was also surprisingly open on another point: “It (Ukraine) is waging a proxy war.”

This is also proven by relevant studies. Ulrich Blum, Gregor Borg, Nico Krapp, Hanna Liventseva and Iewvgeniia Rozhkova have highlighted the geostrategic importance of raw materials in Ukraine:

Ukraine is rich in raw materials, especially in the Donbas region. These include raw materials such as iron ore and coal, which were important for the first industrial revolution. But the wealth also includes non-ferrous metals and battery-related minerals, especially lithium, which is of outstanding importance for the modern and especially a green economy (Blum, et al.)

This points to the deeper reasons for the war. For the European Union, it is not just about permanently weakening Russia alongside the USA. It is also about wresting important raw material deposits from the Russian orbit. Specifically: On Ukraine’s soil, the EU is fighting for its future raw material base. The study cited states:

An independent Ukraine could become a major competitor to Russia in the raw materials and minerals market. A Ukraine that belongs to the EU would be able to develop into a strategic network partner within Western economies. Magnesium plays an important role here: China currently produces over 80 percent of the world’s reserves of magnesium, an important alloying element for aluminum. If magnesium were no longer supplied due to a conflict, a large part of the aluminum industry—and thus also the vehicle industry—would come to a standstill within a short period of time (Blum, et al.).

In the territories occupied by Russia and incorporated into the Russian Federation, deposits can be found that could give Russia a market monopoly:

Under the conditions of the global energy transition, especially decarbonization, from Russia’s perspective the value of its fossil resources must inevitably erode. It can therefore be assumed that his attack on Ukraine was not only motivated by power politics, but was aimed at gaining access to Ukrainian raw materials and materials that could ensure Russia’s dominant position as a raw material supplier again in the age of a decarbonized economy. Such an approach has a tradition, because from a Russian perspective, the east of Ukraine—the Donbass—has long been considered central to the development and survival of the Russian economy (Blum, et al.).

Lithium deposits in particular play an important role in the EU’s decarbonization strategy for electromobility, renewable energies and energy storage. The low level of exploration makes it difficult to evaluate the resources. Deposits of pegmatite and spodumene are documented in the districts of Zaporizhzhia (Kruta Balka), Kirovohrad (Dobra Block) and Donetsk (Shevchenkivske): The grade and tonnage of the deposits are lower than world-class deposits, but they are still little explored and could have “considerable potential.”

This roughly outlines the geostrategic and economic reasons for war. But it is becoming apparent that a divided Europe will be unable to achieve either its political or economic goals and will instead be stuck with the costs over the long term.

7. Winners and Losers

Sustainable tectonic shifts are taking place in geopolitics and thus also in the global economy. The weight of the West is decreasing, the political and economic force is moving to the global south. The United States is fighting for its supremacy, for “full spectrum dominance”. Even if Washington is the beneficiary of the war in Ukraine—the USA is a phoenix in nosedive. While states like Russia, China, Brazil, South Africa and India are distancing themselves, Washington is preparing to drag its European satraps into the depths with it. As early as 2003, Jonathan Schell identified the USA’s pursuit of “full spectrum dominance” as the central cause of wars and crises worldwide.

The Ukraine war accelerates China’s rise to become the second superpower. China supports Russia because it does not want a weak state dependent on Washington in its north. In doing so, it also secures Russian raw material reserves. However, the threats of a nuclear strike are a thorn in Beijing’s side.

The war in Ukraine is also accelerating the independence of the BRICS and BRICS Plus states. But this is a long and contradictory process. The de-dollarization of international trade, especially oil and gas, has begun but will take a long time. Washington will defend itself against this with all its means. Because without linking energy transactions to the dollar, the United States can no longer go into endless debt and print money. But the trend towards a multipolar world continues. In the end, a new bipolar world will emerge, with Beijing and Washington as the antagonistic poles.

The EU has degenerated into a collection of satrap states of Washington, a subdivision of NATO. The EU once started out as a peace project; now this peace project is dead. As early as 2016, Richard Sakwa spoke of a “European suicide” with a view to the looming war in Ukraine:

We can talk of a ‘new suicide’ as the idealism associated with a whole era of European integration has been revealed as nugatory and an illusion. At the heart of the EU is a peace project, and it delivered on this promise in Western Europe before 1989. However, when faced with a no less demanding challenge in the post-Communist era – to heal the Cold War divisions and to build the foundations for a united continent – the EU has spectacularly failed. Instead of a vision embracing the whole continent, it has become little more than the civilian wing of the Atlantic security alliance… Atlanticism is becoming increasingly ramified, while Russia is left out in the cold (Richard Sakwa, p. 227).

The European Union has thus lost its central function. Historically, it has failed as a peace project. Overzealous transatlanticists in the federal government do not represent the interests of the German population, but rather those of the USA. The German-French axis no longer sets the tone. The tandem is not functional anymore. The reason is that Germany is increasingly trying to maintain its own leadership role within the EU. But the Washington-Vilnius-Warsaw-Kiev axis now sets the tone. US Deputy Secretary of State James O’Brien emphasized in December 2023:

Without referring to the past, I would like to emphasize that security cooperation between Poland and the United States has always been very close, regardless of what the American government and the Polish government were. Today we really want Poland to take a leading role in the European Union. And that is the declared goal of the new government.

By upgrading the EU’s eastern flank, the United States has succeeded in dividing the European Union. The eastern neighbors are now being integrated and supported as a bulwark against Russia—militarily, politically and financially. This puts Germany and Europe in the slipstream of geo-economic developments. We are becoming not only the backyard of the United States, but also the backyard of Russia. The energy flows and container traffic, the economic centers are moving eastwards, forming along the Budapest-Moscow-Astana-Beijing axis. The Silk and Road Summit in the Hungarian capital ten days ago clearly demonstrated this.

8. Conclusions and Policy Measures

Congress in Washington is currently blocking further aid to Ukraine. This leaves the Biden administration in a bind. The US government cannot keep its promises to Kiev. This shows that Biden has failed to convince skeptics in Congress that it is in the US interest to defeat Moscow in Ukraine. This also shows that Russia is NATO’s main target in the Ukraine war. The purpose of Ukraine support is not to defend Ukraine, but to exhaust Russia. The Ukrainians are just cannon fodder in the eyes of NATO. This shows the full cynicism of this war:

Ultimately, the game between the US and Europe in aiding Ukraine is that the purpose of the aid is not to defend Ukraine but to consume Russia. Ukraine is seen as a “consumable product” in the eyes of the West, and no country will pay a higher price for Ukraine’s security. This once again demonstrates the sad reality: Ukraine is the biggest loser in the entire conflict.

The United States is the biggest winner in this armed conflict. Through the Ukraine war, they have consolidated their control over their European and Asia-Pacific allies, achieving a level of hegemony that even exceeds that of the Cold War. The European Union has been reduced to a ward. Their governments behave like governors of Washington.

Ukraine is suffering the greatest damage from this policy. It can only survive thanks to the help of the USA and the EU. The country is effectively bankrupt. On the one hand, the US government is trying to fuel the war between Russia and Ukraine by increasing arms aid, but on the other hand, due to a lack of majorities in Congress, it cannot ensure follow-up funding. The war in Gaza is consuming the attention of the US government elite, and it is becoming increasingly difficult for lawmakers to win the support of war-weary US voters. This means that US politics is in a dilemma.

Despite these setbacks, the US government will not stop aiding Ukraine, because it has a demonstration effect: if Washington stops its support, European countries would follow suit. Therefore, a dirty game has begun: If the USA reduces its aid, then the EU countries will be forced to provide more support to Ukraine. But in the European Union the first governments are backing out. Six countries have not joined the declaration on security guarantees for Kiev.

These cracks in the front of the “values” West are deepening the longer the battle of attrition lasts in Ukraine. The West is unable to weaken Russia militarily, propagandistically and economically. For the Biden administration, the Ukraine war is becoming a burden in the election campaign. Nevertheless, the war will continue: The president wants to sell a Ukrainian victory as a diplomatic success. That is why there is no scope for peace talks.

The second loser is the European Union, especially Germany. There is nothing left of the “European values”: ammunition with depleted uranium; area bombings; cluster munitions; bombing of civilian targets by Ukrainians; an alliance with Nazis in militias and the Ukrainian army; ignoring Ukrainian atrocities—the West has lost all credibility, all moral integrity in the rest of the world. Not Russia, the West is isolated worldwide. People in Asia, Africa and South America look at Germany and Europe with contempt. Most of the world is united in rejecting this war provoked by NATO and in which the Ukrainian people are being burned. No one in the rest of the world is surprised that Russia does not want to see NATO missiles under its nose. People in the global South find the West’s phrases of an “unprovoked war of aggression” disgusting. Their governments don’t join in with the sanctions and laugh at Germany’s economic suicide.

This situation is a great chance for the global south: It can take advantage of unimagined opportunities: China has replaced European car manufacturers as a supplier to the Russian market. India and Saudi Arabia buy Russian oil and resell it to the stupid Europeans at a premium. A dozen large countries have demonstratively joined the BRICS alliance since the start of the war. In the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, China and India are also in a military alliance with Russia. The sanctions have resulted in Europe completely destroying its reputation as a safe haven for investors. The seizure of Russian assets was legally, morally and economically insane. The exclusion of Russian athletes, artists and scientists cannot be justified and is a declaration of bankruptcy.

A change of course in German politics is therefore urgent. The federal government should end its political allegiance to Washington and focus more on an independent course. In terms of foreign policy, it would be advisable to advocate for an immediate ceasefire and the start of peace negotiations. This is the only way to stop further bloodshed and the complete destruction of Ukraine. Berlin should withdraw from military aid for Kiev and link further economic aid to Ukraine to the fact that the attack on the Nordstream pipeline is investigated and the perpetrator is punished and forced to make amends. The necessary political weight can be achieved by reactivating the German-French axis. Together with Paris and Rome, a peace policy alternative to the course of the US neocons can be formulated. In terms of economic policy, I suggest unilaterally withdrawing from the self-destructive sanctions against Russia, negotiating with Moscow about repairing Nord Stream 1 and putting the pipeline back into operation. Domestically, an active industrial, structural and educational policy would be required, which could put the 100 billion Euro package earmarked for armaments to sensible use. In my opinion, in the long term, leaving NATO, which is led by Washington, is a necessary step.

The war in Ukraine is the West’s greatest military, geopolitical and economic defeat since World War II. But that is not the worst of it. The West, especially the Federal Republic of Germany, betrayed all of its moral values in this war. We are stained with the blood of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians and Russians, for whose deaths we, the German politicians, military officers, arms managers and journalists, are also responsible. Again, we sit defiled among the nations.


Patrik Baab is a political scientist and journalist. His reports and research on secret services and wars do not fit in with the propaganda of states and corporate media. He has reported from Russia, Great Britain, the Balkans, Poland, the Baltic states and Afghanistan. His most recent book is Auf beiden Seiten der Front—Meine Reisen in die Ukraine (On Both Sides of the Front—My Travels in Ukraine). More about him is found on his website.


Remembering Who We Are: Identity and Tradition to Resist Globalism

In the time of the “night of the world,” visions of being installed in a naive realism and flooded with high ideological doses, which dissolve the possible in the existing, prevail as the only horizon. The imposed ontology, the one functional to the dominant class, is centered on the untransformability of the order of things and, at the same time, on the primacy of the technical act, which instrumentalizes entities with a view to the infinite increase of the will to power.

As we have tried to show in Idealismo o barbarie, the first revolution consists in the change of the ontological frame of reference and, specifically, in the variation of the coefficient of inevitability. To the mystique of necessity and the absolutism of the given reality, that is to say the two ontological principles on which the hegemony of the dominant pole is founded (according to the theorem of there is no alternative), it is necessary to oppose an ontology of historical possibility. The latter must be based on a conception of being not as an unmodifiable datum, but as history and possibility, therefore capable of transformation through the process of collectively organized subjective praxis.

In conformity with the subject-objective ontology theorized by classical German idealism, the Object, far from being res separata to which the Subject must adapt (adaequatio rei et intellectus), is always mediated by the Subject itself: fatum non datur. With Hegelian syntax, it is necessary to think die Substanz als Subjekt (“Substance as Subject”), being as mediated by subjective doing. Consistent with these general ontological foundations, reality is a process in act—with Hegel, Wirklichkeit and not Realität—and does not coincide with that which simply “is”: rather, it is the sum of that which “is,” that which “has been,” and that which, from that which exists and that which has already been, “could be.” Thus, in what we would call with Marx the present “realm of strange beings to which man is subjugated,” to act means to rely on the free decision to realize the unfinished possibilities of history itself, transforming the past into a reservoir of virtualities that can be implemented through the concrete encounter between anticipatory decision and transformative praxis: in Heidegger’s words in Being and Time, “the decision, which returns upon itself and is self-transmitted, then becomes the repetition of a transferred possibility of existence,” revitalized and placed in tension with the present in which it finds itself.

The repetition of the past, therefore, is not the ritual celebration of that which no longer exists, nor the sterile seduction exercised by a past that is believed to be able to return as it was. It is, on the contrary, the active gesture of transmitting and recalling the possibilities preserved in that which has been and which can incubate multiple possibilities for the future: die Wiederholung ist die ausdrückliche Überlieferung, das heiBt der Rückgang in Möglichkeiten des dagewesenen Daseins, “repetition is the explicit transmission, that is, the return to the possibilities of being-there-that-has-been-there”. Again, with Heidegger’s syntax, Dasein (“being-there”)—both of the individual and of peoples—is a synthesis of the three dimensions: of the future of the project, of the present of the decision and of the past of the origin. And, turning now to Hegel, it is the bearer of historical consciousness and of the consciousness of contradiction as the root of being.

Even if it is different and, at times, incommensurable with respect to that of Being and Time, the subjectivity questioned by Hegel in the pages of the Phenomenology of Spirit has in common with the former the historical temporality in its tri-articulation, assumed as the very foundation of being in the world of man. The Hegelian Subject is, by its essence, the bearer of a progressive historical consciousness. It gradually conquers the historical consciousness of itself as a unitary subject, which objectifies itself in temporality according to increasingly rational forms. Such forms are, in turn, conceived in their authentic subject-objective nature of historical products, and not of given and presupposed suchness.

The conception of Substance as Subject, defined in the Phenomenology of Spirit, implies that Totality is given as the movement of its own development and that the Concept is resolved in the dynamic that makes it become truly itself; with the Phenomenology, “it is Spirit itself that moves: he is the Subject of the movement (er ist das Subjekt der Bewegung) and, at the same time, the movement itself, that is, the Substance through which the Subject passes,” which therefore exists indispensably in the dimension of time and of becoming, that is, of its history. That is precisely why the Spirit is time or, as Hegel specifies, erscheint der Geist notwendig in der Zeit, “the Spirit necessarily manifests itself in time,” as processual self-consciousness and as a series of practical objectivations.

Beyond the obvious differences, both the Dasein of Being and Time and the communitarian Subject of the Phenomenology of Spirit are equally “discharged” by the logic of the flexibilization of coessential identities to the new spirit of the de-anticized and absolute system of needs. The homo instabilis, co-originary with respect to the new made-precarious anthropological profile, cannot decide freely since, more and more ostensibly, he appears as an external and directed pawn, considered in the same way as all other commodities on demand. It does not have, Hegelianly, historical consciousness and communitarian eticity, nor, Heideggerianly, projective temporality and remembrance. It cannot enjoy a free ek-static projectuality directed to the future, condemned as it is to the precarious life that, by its essence, denies the very foundation of ek-sistence as a claimed transcendence of the present to reach desired futures.

Finally, the postmodern homo instabilis is deprived of mnestic memory and of his own historical roots. The absolute mobility to which he is condemned renders him uprooted and deterritorialized, projected in the pure ahistorical and aprospective immanence of the eternal flexible present, of which he is a nomadic and unstable inhabitant. One of the fundamental bases of Dasein, whether individual or collective, is thus deconstructed.

The “global I” of homo instabilis, deprived of memory and tradition, is therefore mutilated of soul, if we take for granted, as St. Augustine affirms in his Confessions, that sedis animi est in memoria. At the same time, the sphere of prospective and the mnestic dimension is dissolved, that is, the capacity to recall tradition and to draw inspiration from it in a projective key (“the self is memory,” Hegel reminded us). Only the mens instans survives, as Leibniz called it, the “instantaneous mind” incapable of remembering and projecting, of thinking and imagining, entirely absorbed in the reified immanence of calculation and know-how. The construction of the identities of individuals and communities is always based on the stratification of experiences, on their sedimentation in the form of memory. There is no cultural identity in the absence of historical memory. Uprooted man is deprived of historical consciousness and lives, with a necessary false consciousness, the time of flexible accumulation as a natural and eternal destiny. “The ahistoricity of consciousness is the messenger of a static state of reality,” as Adorno pointed out.

The humanism of classical civilization, expressed, for example, in Cicero’s Brutus (§ 257), is denied by techno-nihilistic barbarism: non quantum quisque prosit, sed quanti quisque sit poderandum est.

It is a question, mutatis mutandis, of the same distinction established by Kant, in the Foundation of the Metaphysics of Morals (1785), between price and dignity: that which has a price—Kant explains—can be exchanged for its equivalent, while that which has no price, having no equivalent, is that which possesses only dignity.


Diego Fusaro is professor of the History of Philosophy at the IASSP in Milan (Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies) where he is also scientific director. He is a scholar of the Philosophy of History, specializing in the thought of Fichte, Hegel, and Marx. His interest is oriented towards German idealism, its precursors (Spinoza) and its followers (Marx), with a particular emphasis on Italian thought (Gramsci or Gentile, among others). he is the author of many books, including Fichte and the Vocation of the IntellectualThe Place of Possibility: Toward a New Philosophy of Praxis, and Marx, again!: The Spectre ReturnsThis article appears courtesy of Posmodernia.


Featured: The Painter’s Studio, by James Digman Wingfield; painted in 1856.


The Russian Art of War: How the West Led Ukraine to Defeat

We are very happy to bring you this excerpt (along with the Table of Contents) from Colonel Jacques Baud’s latest book, The Russian Art of War: How the West Led Ukraine to Defeat (L’art de la guerre russe: Comment l’occident conduire l’ukraine a la echec). This is a detailed study of the two-year old conflict in which the West has brutally used the Ukrainians to pursue an old pipedream: the conquest of Russia.

Please support the work of Colonel Baud and purchase a copy at Amazon, or at Barnes & Noble. And please ask all your family and friends to get a copy of this important and timely book as well.

Russian Military Thought

Throughout the Cold War period, the Soviet Union saw itself as the spearhead of a historical struggle that would lead to a confrontation between the “capitalist” system and “progressive forces.” This perception of a permanent and inescapable war led the Soviets to study war in a quasi-scientific way, and to structure this thinking into an architecture of military thought that has no equal in the Western world.

The problem with the vast majority of our so-called military experts is their inability to understand the Russian approach to war. It is the result of an approach we have already seen in waves of terrorist attacks—the adversary is so stupidly demonized that we refrain from understanding his way of thinking. As a result, we are unable to develop strategies, articulate our forces, or even equip them for the realities of war. The corollary of this approach is that our frustrations are translated by unscrupulous media into a narrative that feeds hatred and increases our vulnerability. We are thus unable to find rational, effective solutions to the problem.

The way Russians understand conflict is holistic. In other words, they see the processes that develop and lead to the situation at any given moment. This explains why Vladimir Putin’s speeches invariably include a return to history. In the West, we tend to focus on X moment and try to see how it might evolve. We want an immediate response to the situation we see today. The idea that “from the understanding of how the crisis arose comes the way to resolve it” is totally foreign to the West. In September 2023, an English-speaking journalist even pulled out the “duck test” for me: “if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck.” In other words, all the West needs to assess a situation is an image that fits their prejudices. Reality is much more subtle than the duck model….

The reason the Russians are better than the West in Ukraine is that they see the conflict as a process; whereas we see it as a series of separate actions. The Russians see events as a film. We see them as photographs. They see the forest, while we focus on the trees. That is why we place the start of the conflict on February 24, 2022, or the start of the Palestinian conflict on October 7, 2023. We ignore the contexts that bother us and wage conflicts we do not understand. That is why we lose our wars…

****

In Russia, unsurprisingly, the principles of the military art of the Soviet forces inspired those currently in use:

  • readiness to carry out assigned missions;
  • concentration of efforts on solving a specific mission;
  • surprise (unconventionality) of military action vis-à-vis the enemy;
  • finality determines a set of tasks and the level of resolution of each one;
  • totality of available means determines the way to resolve the mission and achieve the objective (correlation of forces);
  • coherence of leadership (unity of command);
  • economy of forces, resources, time and space;
  • support and restoration of combat capability;
  • freedom of maneuver.

It should be noted that these principles apply not only to the implementation of military action as such. They are also applicable as a system of thought to other non-operational activities.

An honest analysis of the conflict in Ukraine would have identified these various principles and drawn useful conclusions for Ukraine. But none of the self-proclaimed experts on TV were intellectually able to do so.

Thus, Westerners are systematically surprised by the Russians in the fields of technology (e.g., hypersonic weapons), doctrine (e.g., operative art) and economics (e.g., resilience to sanctions). In a way, the Russians are taking advantage of our prejudices to exploit the principle of surprise. We can see this in the Ukrainian conflict, where the Western narrative led Ukraine to totally underestimate Russian capabilities, which was a major factor in its defeat. That is why Russia did not really try to counter this narrative and let it play out—the belief that we are superior makes us vulnerable….

Correlation of Forces

Russian military thought is traditionally linked to a holistic approach to warfare, which involves the integration of a large number of factors in the development of a strategy. This approach is materialized by the concept of “correlation of forces” (Соотношение сил).

Often translated as “balance of forces” or “ratio of forces,” this concept is only understood by Westerners as a quantitative quantity, limited to the military domain. In Soviet thinking, however, the correlation of forces reflected a more holistic reading of war:

There are several criteria for assessing the correlation of strengths. In the economic sphere, the factors usually compared are gross national product per capita, labor productivity, the dynamics of economic growth, the level of industrial production, particularly in high-tech sectors, the technical infrastructure of the production tool, the resources and degree of qualification of the workforce, the number of specialists and the level of development of theoretical and applied sciences.

In the military field, the factors compared are the quantity and quality of armaments, the firepower of the armed forces, the fighting and moral qualities of the soldiers, the level of staff training, the organization of the troops and their combat experience, the character of the military doctrine and the methods of strategic, operative and tactical thinking.

In the political sphere, the factors that come into consideration are the breadth of the social base of state authority, its organization, the constitutional procedure for relations between the government and legislative bodies, the ability to take operational decisions, and the degree and character of popular support for domestic and foreign policy.

Finally, when assessing the strength of the international movement, the factors taken into consideration are its quantitative composition, its influence with the masses, its position in the political life of each country, the principles and norms of relations between its components and the degree of their cohesion.

In other words, the assessment of the situation is not limited to the balance of forces on the battlefield, but takes into account all the elements that have an impact on the evolution of the conflict. Thus, for their Special Military Operation, the Russian authorities had planned to support the war effort through the economy, without moving to a “war economy” regimen. Thus, unlike in Ukraine, there was no interruption in the tax and welfare mechanisms.

This is why the sanctions applied to Russia in 2014 had a double positive effect. The first was the realization that they were not only a short-term problem, but above all a medium- and long-term opportunity. They encouraged Russia to produce goods it had previously preferred to buy abroad. The second was the signal that the West would increasingly use economic weapons as a means of pressure in the future. It therefore became imperative, for reasons of national independence and sovereignty, to prepare for more far-reaching sanctions affecting the country’s economy.

In reality, it has long been known that sanctions do not work. Logically enough, they have had the opposite effect, acting as protectionist measures for Russia, which has thus been able to consolidate its economy, as had been the case after the 2014 sanctions. A sanctions strategy might have paid off if the Russian economy had effectively been the equivalent of the Italian or Spanish economy, i.e., with a high level of debt; and if the entire planet had acted in unison to isolate Russia.

The inclusion of the correlation of forces in the decision-making process is a fundamental difference from Western decision-making processes, which are linked more to a policy of communication than to a rational approach to problems.

This explains, for example, Russia’s limited objectives in the Ukraine, where it does not seek to occupy the entire territory, as the correlation of forces in the western part of the country would be unfavorable.

At every level of leadership, the correlation of forces is part of situation assessment. At the operational level, it is defined as follows:

The result of comparing the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of the forces and resources (sub-units, units, weapons, military equipment, etc.) of one’s own troops (forces) and those of the enemy. It is calculated on an operational and tactical scale throughout the area of operations, in the main and other directions, in order to determine the degree of objective superiority of one of the opposing camps. Force correlation assessment is used to make an informed decision about an operation (battle), and to establish and maintain the necessary superiority over the enemy for as long as possible, when decisions are redefined (modified) during military (combat) operations.

This simple definition is the reason why the Russians committed themselves with forces inferior to those of Ukraine in February 2022, or why they withdrew from Kiev, Kharkov and Kherson in March, September and October 2022.

****

Structure of the Doctrine

The Russians have always attached particular importance to doctrine. Better than the West, they have understood that “a common way of seeing, thinking and acting”—as Marshal Foch put it—gives coherence, while allowing for infinite variations in the conception of operations. Military doctrine is a kind of “common core” that serves as a reference for designing operations.

Russian military doctrine divides military art into three main components: strategy (strategiya), operative art (operativnoe iskoustvo) and tactics (taktika). Each of these components has its own characteristics, very similar to those found in Western doctrines. Using the terminology of French doctrine on the use of forces:

  • The strategic level is that of conception. The aim of strategic action is to lead the adversary to negotiation or defeat.
  • The operative level is that of cooperation and coordination of inter-force actions, with a view to achieving a given military objective.
  • The tactical level, finally, is that of maneuver execution at weapon level as an integral part of the operational maneuver.

These three components correspond to levels of leadership, which translate into leadership structures and the space in which military operations are conducted. For simplicity’s sake, let us say that the strategic level ensures the management of the theater of war (Театр Войны) (TV); a geographically vast entity, with its own command and control structures, within which there are one or more strategic directions. The theater of war comprises a set of theaters of military operations (Театр Военных Действий) (TVD), which represent a strategic direction and are the domain of operative action. These various theaters have no predetermined structure and are defined according to the situation. For example, although we commonly speak of the “war in Afghanistan” (1979-1989) or the “war in Syria” (2015-), these countries are considered in Russian terminology as TVDs and not TVs.

The same applies to Ukraine, which Russia sees as a theater of military operations (TVD) and not a theater of war (TV), which explains why the action in Ukraine is designated as a “Special Military Operation” (Специальная Военая Операция—Spetsialaya). A Special Military Operation” (Специальная Военная Операция – Spetsial’naya Voyennaya Operatsiya—SVO, or SMO in English abbreviation) and not a “war.”

The use of the word “war” would imply a different structure of conduct than that envisaged by the Russians in Ukraine, and would have other structural implications in Russia itself. Moreover—and this is a central point—as NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg himself acknowledges, “the war began in 2014” and should have been ended by the Minsk Agreements. The SMO is therefore a “military operation” and not a new “war,” as many Western “experts” claim.

****

The Special Military Operation in Ukraine

The Correlation of Forces

Consider all the factors that directly or indirectly influence the conflict. Conversely, as we have seen in Ukraine and elsewhere, Westerners have a much more political reading of the war, and end up mixing the two. This is why communication plays such an essential role in the conduct of war: the perception of the conflict plays an almost more important role than its reality. This is why, in Iraq, the Americans literally invented episodes that glorified their troops.

Russia’s analysis of the situation in February 2022 was undoubtedly considerably more pertinent than that of the West. They knew that a Ukrainian offensive against the Donbass was underway and that it could endanger the government. In 2014-2015, after the massacres in Odessa and Mariupol, the Russian population was very much in favor of intervention. Vladimir Putin’s stubborn clinging to the Minsk Agreements was poorly understood in Russia.

The factors that contributed to Russia’s decision to intervene were twofold: the expected support of Ukraine’s ethnically Russian population (which we will call “Russian-speaking” for convenience) and an economy robust enough to withstand sanctions.

The Russian-speaking population had risen up en masse against the new authorities following the coup d’état of February 2014, whose first decision had been to strip the Russian language of its official status. Kiev tried to backtrack, but in April 2019, the 2014 decision was definitively confirmed.

Since the adoption of the Law on Indigenous Peoples on July 1, 2021, Russian speakers (ethnic Russians) are no longer considered normal Ukrainian citizens and no longer enjoy the same rights as ethnic Ukrainians. They can therefore be expected to offer no resistance to the Russian coalition in the eastern part of the country….

Since March 24, 2021, Ukrainian forces have been stepping up their presence around the Donbass and have increased the pressure against the autonomists with their fire.

Zelensky’s decree of March 24, 2021 for the reconquest of Crimea and the Donbass was the real trigger for the SMO. From that moment on, the Russians understood that if there was military action against them, they would have to intervene. But they also knew that the cause of the Ukrainian operation was NATO membership, as Oleksei Arestovitch had explained. That is why, in mid-December 2021, they were submitting proposals to the USA and NATO on extending the Alliance: their aim was then to remove Ukraine’s motive for an offensive in the Donbass.

The reason for the Russian Special Military Operation (SMO) is indeed the protection of the populations of Donbass; but this protection was necessary because of Kiev’s desire to go through a confrontation to enter NATO. The extension of NATO is therefore only the indirect cause of the conflict in Ukraine. The latter could have spared itself this ordeal by implementing the Minsk Agreements—but what we wanted was a defeat for Russia.

In 2008, Russia intervened in Georgia to protect the Russian minority then being bombed by its government, as confirmed by the Swiss ambassador, Heidi Tagliavini, who was responsible for investigating this event. In 2014, many voices were raised in Russia to demand intervention when the new regime in Kiev had engaged its army against the civilian population of the five autonomist oblasts (Odessa, Dnepropetrovsk, Kharkov, Lugansk and Donetsk) and applied a fierce repression. In 2022, it could be expected that the population of Russia would not understand the government’s inaction, after no efforts were made from the Ukrainian and Western sides to enforce the Minsk Agreements. They knew that they did not have the means to launch an economic retaliation. But they also knew that an economic war against Russia would inevitably backfire on Western countries.

An important element of Russian military and political thinking is its legalistic dimension. The way our media present events, systematically omitting facts that could explain, justify, legitimize or even legalize Russia’s actions. We tend to think that Russia is acting outside any legal framework. For example, our media present the Russian intervention in Syria as having been decided unilaterally by Moscow; whereas it was carried out at the request of the Syrian government, after the West had allowed the Islamic State to move closer to Damascus, as confessed by John Kerry, then Secretary of State. Nevertheless, there is never any mention of the occupation of eastern Syria by American troops, who were never even invited there!

We could multiply the examples, to which our journalists will counter with the war crimes committed by Russian forces. This may well be true, but the simple fact that these accusations are not based on any impartial and neutral investigation (as required by humanitarian doctrine), nor on any international one, since Russia is systematically refused participation, casts a shadow over the honesty of these accusations. For example, the sabotage of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines was immediately attributed to Russia, which was accused of violating international law.

In fact, unlike the West, which advocates a “rules-based international order,” the Russians insist on a “law-based international order.” Unlike the West, they will apply the law to the letter. No more, no less.

The legal framework for Russia’s intervention in Ukraine has been meticulously planned. As this subject has already been covered in one of my previous books, I will not go into details here…

****

The Objectives and Strategy of Russia

On February 23, 2023, Swiss military “expert” Alexandre Vautravers commented on Russia’s objectives in Ukraine:

The aim of the Special Military Operation was to decapitate Ukrainian political and military governance in the space of five, ten, maybe even two weeks. The Russians then changed their plan and their objectives with a number of other failures; so they change their objectives and their strategic orientations almost every week or every month.

The problem is that our “experts” themselves define Russia’s objectives according to what they imagine, only to be able to say that it has not achieved them. So. Let us get back to the facts.

On February 24, 2022, Russia launched its “Special Military Operation” (SMO) in Ukraine “at short notice.” In his televised address, Vladimir Putin explained that its strategic objective was to protect the population of Donbass. This objective can be broken down into two parts:

  • “demilitarize” the Ukrainian armed forces regrouped in the Donbass in preparation for the offensive against the DPR and LPR; and
  • “denazify” (i.e. “neutralize”) the ultra-nationalist and neo-Nazi paramilitary militias in the Mariupol area.

The formulation chosen by Vladimir Putin has been very poorly analyzed in the West. It is inspired by the 1945 Potsdam Declaration, which envisaged the development of defeated Germany according to four principles: demilitarization, denazification, democratization and decentralization.

The Russians understand war from a Clausewitzian perspective: war is the pursuit of politics by other means. This then means that they seek to transform operational successes into strategic successes, and military successes into political objectives. So, while the demilitarization evoked by Putin is clearly linked to the military threat to the populations of the Donbass in application of the decree of March 24, 2021, signed by Zelensky.

But this objective conceals a second: the neutralization of Ukraine as a future NATO member. This is what Zelensky understood when he proposed a resolution to the conflict in March 2022. At first, his proposal was supported by Western countries, probably because at this stage they believed that Russia had failed in its bid to take over Ukraine in three days, and that it would not be able to sustain its war effort because of the massive sanctions imposed on it. But at the NATO meeting of March 24, 2022, the Allies decided not to support Zelensky’s proposition.

Nevertheless, on March 27, Zelensky publicly defended his proposal and on March 28, as a gesture of support for this effort, Vladimir Putin eased the pressure on the capital and withdrew his troops from the area. Zelensky’s proposal served as the basis for the Istanbul Communiqué of March 29, 2022, a ceasefire agreement as a prelude to a peace agreement. It was this document that Vladimir Putin presented in June 2023, when an African delegation visited Moscow. It was Boris Johnson’s intervention that prompted Zelensky to withdraw his proposal, exchanging peace and the lives of his men for support “for as long as it takes.”

This version of events—which I have already presented in my previous works—was finally confirmed in early November 2023 by David Arakhamia, then chief negotiator for Ukraine196. He explained that Russia had never intended to seize Kiev.

In essence, Russia agreed to withdraw to the borders of February 23, 2022, in exchange for a ceiling on Ukrainian forces and a commitment not to become a NATO member, along with security guarantees from a number of countries….

Two conclusions can be drawn:

  • Russia’s objective was not to conquer territory. If the West had not intervened to push Zelensky to withdraw his offer, Ukraine would probably still have its army.
  • While the Russians intervened to ensure the security and protection of the population of the Donbass, their SMO enabled them to achieve a broader objective, which involves Russia’s security.

This means that, although this objective is not formulated, the demilitarization of Ukraine could open the door to its neutralization. This is not surprising since, conversely, in an interview with the Ukrainian channel Apostrof’ on March 18, 2019, Volodymyr Zelensky’s advisor Oleksei Arestovitch cynically explains that, because Ukraine wants to join NATO, it will have to create the conditions for Russia to attack Ukraine and be definitively defeated.

The problem is that Ukrainian and Western analysis is fueled by their own narratives. The conviction that Russia will lose has meant that no alternative contingency has been prepared. In September 2023, the West, beginning to see the collapse of this narrative and its implementation, tried to move towards a “freeze” in the conflict, without taking into account the opinion of the Russians, who dominate on the ground.

Yet Russia would have been satisfied with a situation such as that proposed by Zelensky in March 2022. What the West wants in September 2023 is merely a pause until an even more violent conflict breaks out, after Ukrainian forces have been rearmed and reconstituted.

****

Ukrainian Strategy

The strategic objective of Volodymyr Zelensky and his team is to join NATO, as a prelude to a brighter future within the EU. It complements that of the Americans (and therefore of the Europeans). The problem is that tensions with Russia, particularly over Crimea, are causing NATO members to put off Ukraine’s participation. In March 2022, Zelensky revealed on CNN that this is exactly what the Americans told him.

Before coming to power in April 2019, Volodymyr Zelensky’s discourse was divided between two antagonistic policies: the reconciliation with Russia promised during his presidential campaign and his goal of joining NATO. He knows that these two policies are mutually exclusive, as Russia does not want to see NATO and its nuclear weapons installed in Ukraine and wanted neutrality or non-alignment.

What is more, he knows that his ultra-nationalist allies will refuse to negotiate with Russia. This was confirmed by Praviy Sektor leader Dmitro Yarosh, who openly threatened him with death in the Ukrainian media a month after his election. Zelensky therefore knew from the start of the election campaign that he would not be able to fulfill his promise of reconciliation, and that there was only one solution left: confrontation with Russia.

But this confrontation could not be waged by Ukraine alone against Russia, and it would need the material support of the West. The strategy devised by Zelensky and his team was revealed before his election in March 2019 by Oleksei Arestovitch, his personal advisor, on the Ukrainian media Apostrof’. Arestovitch explained that it would take an attack by Russia to provoke an international mobilization that would enable Ukraine to defeat Russia once and for all, with the help of Western countries and NATO. With astonishing precision, he described the course of the Russian attack as it would unfold three years later, between February and March 2022. Not only did he explain that this conflict was unavoidable if Ukraine is to join NATO, but he also placed this confrontation in 2021-2022! He outlined the main areas of Western aid:

In this conflict, we will be very actively supported by the West. Weapons. Equipment. Assistance. New sanctions against Russia. Most likely, the introduction of a NATO contingent. A no-fly zone, and so on. In other words, we won’t lose it.

As we can see, this strategy has much in common with the one described by the RAND Corporation at the same time. So much so, in fact, that it is hard not to see it as a strategy strongly inspired by the United States. In his interview, Arestovitch singled out four elements that would become the pillars of the Ukrainian strategy against Russia, and to which Zelensky returned regularly:

  • International aid and arms supplies,
  • International sanctions,
  • NATO intervention,
  • Creation of a no-fly zone.

It should be noted that these four pillars are understood by Zelensky as promises whose fulfillment is essential to the success of this strategy. In February 2023, Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of Ukraine’s Defense and National Security Council, declared in The Kyiv Independent that Ukraine’s objective was the disintegration of Russia. The mobilization of Western countries to supply Ukraine with heavy weapons then seems to give substance to this objective, which is consistent with what Oleksiy Arestovich had declared in March 2019.

A few months later, however, it became clear that the equipment supplied to Ukraine was not sufficient to ensure the success of its counter-offensive, and Zelensky asked for additional, better-adapted equipment. At this point, there was a certain amount of Western irritation at these repeated demands. Former British Defense Minister Ben Wallace declared that Westerners “are not Amazon.” In fact, the West does not respect its commitments.

Contrary to what our media and pseudo-military experts tell us, since February 2022, it has been clear that Ukraine cannot defeat Russia on its own. As Obama put it, “Russia [there] will always be able to maintain its escalation dominance.” In other words, Ukraine will only be able to achieve its goals with the involvement of NATO countries. This means that its fate will depend on the goodwill of Western countries. So, we need to maintain a narrative that encourages the West to keep up this effort. This narrative will then become what we call, in strategic terms, its “center of gravity.”

As the months went by, the course of operations showed that the prospect of a Ukrainian victory was becoming increasingly remote, as Russia, far from being weakened, was growing stronger, militarily and economically. Even General Christopher Cavoli, Supreme American Commander Europe (SACEUR), told a US congressional committee that “Russia’s air, naval, space, digital and strategic capabilities have not suffered significant degradation during this war.”

The West, expecting a short conflict, is no longer able to maintain the effort promised to Ukraine. The NATO summit in Vilnius (July 11-12, 2023) ended in partial success for Ukraine. Its membership is postponed indefinitely. Its situation is even worse than it was at the beginning of 2022, since there is no more justification for its entry into NATO than there was before the SMO.

Ukraine then turned its attention to a more concrete objective: regaining sovereignty over its entire 1991 territory.

Thus, the Ukrainian notion of “victory” rapidly evolved. The idea of a “collapse of Russia” quickly faded, as did that of its dismemberment. There was talk of “regime change,” which Zelensky made his objective by forbidding any negotiations as long as Vladimir Putin was in power. Then came the reconquest of lost territories, thanks to the counter-offensive of 2023. But here, too, hopes quickly faded. The plan was simply to cut the Russian forces in two, with a thrust towards the Sea of Azov. But by September 2023, this objective had been reduced to the liberation of three cities.

In the absence of concrete successes, narrative remains the only element Ukraine can rely on to maintain Western attention and willingness to support it. For, as Ben Wallace, ex-Defence Minister, put it in The Telegraph on October 1, 2023: “The most precious commodity is hope.” True enough. But Western appraisal of the situation must be based on realistic analyses of the adversary. However, since the beginning of the Ukrainian crisis, Western analyses have been based on prejudice.

****

The Notion of Victory

Russia operates within a framework of Clausewitzian thinking, in which operational successes are exploited for strategic ends. Operational strategy (“operative art”) therefore plays an essential role in the definition of what is considered a victory.

As we saw during the battle of Bakhmut, the Russians adapted perfectly to the strategy imposed on Ukraine by the West, which prioritizes the defense of every square meter. The Ukrainians thus played into the hands of the attrition strategy officially announced by Russia. Conversely, in Kharkov and Kherson, the Russians preferred to cede territory in exchange for the lives of their men. In the context of a war of attrition, sacrificing potential in exchange for territory, as Ukraine is doing, is the worst strategy of all.

This is why General Zaluzhny, commander of the Ukrainian forces, tried to oppose Zelensky and proposed withdrawing his forces from Bakhmut. But in Ukraine, it is the Western narrative that guides military decisions. Zelensky preferred to follow the path laid out for him by our media, in order to retain the support of Western opinion. In November 2023, General Zaluzhny had to openly admit that this decision was a mistake, because prolonging the war will only favor Russia.

The Ukrainian conflict was inherently asymmetrical. The West wanted to turn it into a symmetrical conflict, proclaiming that Ukraine’s capabilities could be enough to topple Russia. But this was clearly wishful thinking from the outset, and its sole purpose was to justify non-compliance with the Minsk Agreements. Russian strategists have turned it into an asymmetrical conflict.

Ukraine’s problem in this conflict is that it has no rational relationship with the notion of victory. By comparison, the Palestinians, who are aware of their quantitative inferiority, have switched to a way of thinking that gives the simple act of resisting a sense of victory. This is the asymmetrical nature of the conflict that Israel has never managed to understand in 75 years, and which it is reduced to overcoming through tactical superiority rather than strategic finesse. In Ukraine, it is the same phenomenon. By clinging to a notion of victory linked to the recovery of territory, Ukraine has locked itself into a logic that can only lead to defeat.

On November 20, 2023, Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, painted a gloomy picture of Ukrainian prospects for 2024. His speech showed that Ukraine had neither a plan to emerge from the conflict, nor an approach that would associate a sense of victory with that emergence: he was reduced to linking Ukraine’s victory to that of the West. In the West, however, the end of the conflict in Ukraine is increasingly perceived as a military, political, human and economic debacle.

In an asymmetrical situation, each protagonist is free to define his or her own criteria for victory, and to choose from a range of criteria under his or her control. This is why Egypt (1973), Hezbollah (2006), the Islamic State (2017), the Palestinian resistance since 1948 and Hamas in 2023 are victorious, despite massive losses. This seems counter-intuitive to a Western mind, but it is what explains why Westerners are unable to really “win” their wars.

In Ukraine, the political leadership has locked itself into a narrative that precludes a way out of the crisis without losing face. The asymmetrical situation now working to Ukraine’s disadvantage stems from a narrative that has been confused with reality, and has led to a response that is ill-suited to the nature of the Russian operation.


Featured: Defend Sevastopol, by Vassily Nesterenko; painted in 2005.


In Berlin

The train crawling out of Berlin was filled with women and children, hardly an able-bodied man. In one compartment a gray-haired Landsturm soldier sat beside an elderly woman who seemed weak and ill. Above the click-clack of the car wheels passengers could hear her counting: “One, two, three,” evidently absorbed in her own thoughts. Sometimes she repeated the words at short intervals. Two girls tittered, thoughtlessly exchanging vapid remarks about such extraordinary behavior. An elderly man scowled reproval. Silence fell.

“One, two, three,” repeated the obviously unconscious woman. Again the girls giggled stupidly. The gray Landsturm leaned forward.

“Fräulein,” he said gravely, “you will perhaps cease laughing when I tell you that this poor lady is my wife. We have just lost our three sons in battle. Before leaving for the front myself I must take their mother to an insane asylum.”

It became terribly quiet in the carriage.


Mary Boyle O’Reilly (1873–1939) was a well-known American war and foreign correspondent during the First World War and afterwards.


Featured: Woman with Dead Child, by Käthe Kollwitz; drawing (1903).


Napoleon’s Gut by Ridley Scott

Directed by an Englishman who has not forgotten that Napoleon was his enemy, and who attacks his posterity through the means of propaganda—cinema—Ridley Scott’s film is heavy-handed to the point of ridiculousness. And it struggles, to say the least, to find its tone. The tragedy of the story eludes him, and some of the great protagonists are conspicuous by their absence. But why do we leave it to Hollywood to paint our great characters? And what is left of France after Napoleon? This article is both an analysis of the film and a more general historical reflection.

Expectations were high, but we were disappointed all the same. One might have imagined that Ridley Scott, a lover of history and blockbuster frescoes, would find the inspiration and form to tell the story of Napoleon, Emperor of the French. His first film, The Duelists, an adaptation of Conrad’s short story, set during the Empire, is as hard, incisive and sharp as steel, not to mention Gladiator, which regales us with sandy virile combat. Alien, Prometheus, Blade Runner; the list goes on and on.

The film’s main flaw is Ridley Scott himself: he is English. His entire film is an indictment of Napoleon. In his endeavor to demythologize and demystify the Emperor, a dazzling victor in the sunshine of Austerlitz, a grandiose force with the will of Destiny, romantic even in the fall of Waterloo, and the dark melancholy of St. Helena, Scott portrays an irascible little, fat man, traumatized by women and complexed by his mother, who to compensate for his weakness gets drunk on the blood of men, taking pleasure in killing. It is the kind of barroom psychology that would make Chateaubriand, the Emperor’s enemy biographer, pale, and Zweig, a portraitist in his own right, a surgeon of consciences and wills, feel sorry for him. The man’s flaws and failings are strung together like a string of bad apples: virile, toxic, macho, violent towards his wife, sexually obsessed, a pedophile, a liar, a narcissistic manipulator, a conspiracy theorist and an exaggerator. What the vulgar press lends to Donald Trump or Vladimir Putin is offered to us throughout. We start with the revolution, celebrated with the death of the Queen—the dark hours of our history—and end with a little moral lesson worthy of a Bertrand Tavernier thesis film: Napoleon is responsible for the death of millions of people, and he is revered as a legend.

The film’s tone is constantly ambiguous. Burlesque and self-mockery combine with the pathology of a killer’s itinerary. We have the worst of Nicolas Sarkozy, a nothingness on two feet. This is L’Histoire d’un mec meets Faites entrer l’accusé. Napoleon is sometimes ridiculous, sometimes as cold as a sociopath, sporting the same hard, constipated face under increasingly pasty features. This in-betweenness between farce and tragedy is uncomfortable throughout.

The film focuses solely on Napoleon and Josephine. Talleyrand is barely sketched in, Fouchet appears in a single shot, and Marshals Ney, Murat, Lannes and Masséna are nowhere to be seen. We can recall Claude Rich, John Malkovich and Guitry as the lame devil and our own Depardieu as Fouchet. The acting leaves much to be desired. Joaquin Phoenix can’t seem to get out of his role as the Joker, drawing mimicry, breathlessness and fragility from it. Both characters share common traits: an infirmity of the soul, a violence within them, a pathological coldness, a strange laugh and the behavior of a mental hospital escapee. It is hard to believe that the actor has remained locked into his role as a buffoon. Vanessa Kirby is unbearable, appearing disheveled all the time, bland and tasteless, laughing uncontrollably at the announcement of her divorce, sad as rain at Malmaison.

The relationship between the emperor and empress takes up a place that spoils the film. The viewer could not care less about this conflicted, friendly relationship; the passions that end up in ashes, the upscale domestic scenes in the Tuileries, to put it politely. No, the viewer could not care less. Scott has no idea how uninteresting the subject is. Napoleon, like all great figures in history, is solitary. To show him held, entrenched, locked in by his wife, is pathetic.

The chronological progression of events in the form of key dates is lazy. The Egyptian expedition is as uninteresting as it gets; and the Italian campaign, with the Pont d’Arcole and Marengo, is skipped. Jena, Wagram, Eylau, all three, are silent. The war in Spain does not exist. The campaigns in Germany and France are forgotten. All these disappointments fail to explain the geopolitical stakes of the moment. Napoleon was a pragmatic and deliberately authoritarian politician. His work as a reformer, too. So be it. What we are left with for over two hours is a distressing portrait of a mad, megalomaniac killer. As a backdrop, we would have preferred to see Napoleon in exile, in his last days, going over in his memory the important events of his life as Emperor, confronting his demons, introspecting his character, in the depths of his solitude and in the face of his intimate weakness.

But there is more to this film than meets the eye. The battle scenes, the ones that remain, are well realized. The assault on Toulon is dynamic, while Austerlitz, without sunshine or triumph, is shown in all its cruelty and violence. The death of those Austrian and Russian soldiers on that icy lake delivered to the cannonballs is implacable. Even Waterloo is not lacking in interest. The film’s cold, gray photography is chiseled; the sets, outfits and palaces are well laid out; the music, from Piaf to Haydn’s Creation, via a Mozarabic Kyrie Eleison played by Marcel Pérès, is welcome. The aesthetic side of this film does do the job, and lives up to its director’s reputation.

Do we really think that the Englishman Scott wanted to deconstruct Napoleon? This verb is often used to denounce a political attempt, driven by a certain ideology, to wipe the slate clean, to cancel, to destroy. I do not believe that the director is so committed to Wokeism as to ideologically undermine the Emperor. He reacts as a subject of perfidious Albion, France’s eternal enemy, and attacks his posterity through the means of propaganda: cinema. Yet to place the Emperor in a harsh light, to be on the other side, opposite, with those who suffered the Corsican ogre, is not entirely without interest if things had only been done well. The problem is, they are not. We did not wait for Scott to shoot Napoleon. Let us sting and provoke a little. Let’s play devil’s advocate.

Napoleon was the strongest armed force of his generation, and came at just the right moment to support the party of order. A leader was needed to avoid chaos and put things right. The bourgeoisie took power, replacing the old nobility, and chose its foal: Bonaparte, a man of action, a military man, a man of the center, neither revolutionary nor backward-looking. Napoleon was a man overtaken by the force of things he had taken on. His talent lay in his ability to synthesize the old and the new: royalism and the republican adventure inherited from Rousseau. Napoleon did not go backwards; he did not make a break; he made a synthesis that worked. If we were to be more provocative, we would dare say that Napoleon was the very product of that social mobility capable of bringing novices, parvenus and boors to the top. The late Ancien Régime was full of these energetic types, moving from chamber pot to chamber valet, from valet to minister, right up to the head of the Directoire.

Action française thinkers such as Bainville were not kind to La Paille au nez. Léon Daudet summed up their ideas on Napoleon in one phrase: “a crusade for nothing.” Yes, Napoleon meant twenty-two years of war (out of the fifty-one years of his existence) to protect France’s borders, respond to the aggression of Europe’s dynasties, impose a continental blockade against the English and a revolutionary ideal on the rest of Europe. While Napoleon’s gesture has greatness, and the sun of Austerlitz still burns every December 2 for over two hundred years, this perpetual war ravaged Europe. Napoleon slashed his map with a saber, closed abbeys and congregations, and abolished feudal systems in southern Germany; he abrogated the Holy Roman Empire; he plundered the whole of Italy, ravaging Venice, which saw its last doge. History forgives the victors and kills the vanquished twice. So much for the great European dream we have heard so much about! Behind the laurels of war, the living blood and the tears, these victorious battles, motivated by a confused maneuver to stifle the English, border on absurd glory. Scott ends his film with this assessment: three million men died in Europe on the battlefields. That is a lot. But as Henri IV’s marshal Montluc would say: “Lords and captains who lead men to death; for war is nothing else.” Napoleon is shown in caricatures pampered by the devil, playing cards and betting men, throwing up troops and cannons. He was a soldier who knew only perpetual war, enlarged an empire that had no geographical sense, and took it upon himself to oust Bourbon from the thrones of Europe.

Some have drawn a comparison, mutatis mutandis, with Adolf Hitler. Of course, the latter’s genocide and biological racism severely limit the comparisons that should be made. Notwithstanding these caveats, both were propelled by a well-defined social class, concerned with its economic interests in the face of the messy revolution, to replace the corrupt Directoire on the one hand, and the limp, dying Weimar Republic on the other. One became consul, the other chancellor; both for life. One became emperor and the other, Führer, took possession of all institutions. Both empires collapsed because they were based on war. For an empire to survive, you need to substitute economic peace for war, as the Romans understood. An empire whose only horizon is war is doomed to disappear quickly. Ten years for the first, twelve for the second. Foreign countries waged war against them. The war waged in Europe was waged against England. It was made possible by the general mobilization of youth, supported by a formidable demographic. The same thirst for power led them to open two fronts, in Western and Eastern Europe. Both went astray in Russia, suffering the invincible General Winter. The Grande Armée was broken, while the death of twenty million Russians broke the Wehrmacht. This Russian failure set in motion the mechanics of defeat and precipitated the collapse of both empires. If France was politically dead in 1815, Germany, which was already a ghost with Hitler, the ghost of a dead 1918, was completely reduced to zero and never really recovered.

Napoleon is partly responsible for our disenchantment. France was grandiose, then ceased to exist after Waterloo. I am one of those people who re-enact the battle a thousand times a year, cannot accept defeat and, in front of Scott’s film, could not watch this drama without bowing their heads in shame and sadness. With Waterloo, France was buried. I cannot deny that the defeat at Waterloo, which signaled our submission to foreign powers and those of money, was followed by a half-hearted Restoration, a bourgeois King of the French, a frilly Second Empire and a republic of bacchantes, rigid and progressive, and allowed for the worst of politics and its choices, but the best of literature and the blossoming of an astonishing painting of the salons. Waterloo, when did we become great? Under de Gaule, some would say, for a while, a little over a decade, and then some. Even now, we are still immersed in this malaise, this melancholy and this hope for greatness. We are waiting as some wait for the man who will save us. Our formidable paradox was revealed when the film was released: we are throwing up the man we are waiting for to emerge from his tomb at Les Invalides.

There was Abel Gance’s great film with the unforgettable Albert Dieudonné; later, by the same director, Austerlitz, with the serious and virile Pierre Mondy. Why on earth is no one in France capable of producing and directing, with substantial resources, a real film about the Emperor, while we leave the matter to those who are hostile to us? I would like to know.


Nicolas Kinosky is at the Centres des Analyses des Rhétoriques Religieuses de l’Antiquité and teaches Latin. This articles appears through the very kind courtesy La Nef.


The Orpheus Complex: The Error of Progressive Neoliberalism

As Michéa has stressed, the new Left of the rainbow is today a victim of the “Orpheus complex.” In order not to lose his beloved Eurydice forever, the singer Orpheus—as Ovid writes in the Metamorphoses (X, 50-52)—could not “look back until he had left the valleys of Avernus” (ne flectat retro sua lumina, donec Avernas / exierit valles).

At the mercy of the cult of progress (id est, of forced capitalist modernization), the neoliberal leftist Orpheus never looks back: he is convinced that the present and the future, in all spheres, can only be better than the past and tradition. he considers that every modernization, in all spheres of human life, is in itself a positive fact and, by this means, achieves reconciliation with capitalist globalization. On the other hand, on the whole, this is the liberal-progressive vision of absolute-totalitarian capital, which advances by annihilating as “regressive” every link and every limit that resists its progress; that is, its march of integral mutation of every being into available commodity and exploitable fund in the name of the infinitely empowered will to power.

Far from preserving the order of things, techno-capital is, to use Jünger’s category, “total mobilization” (totale Mobilmachung) of beings. It ceaselessly transforms the world: Progress is its founding myth. For part of the adventure of Modernity, being in favor of progress may seem a perfectly reasonable option, insofar as progress brings with it emancipation and the development of human potentialities. The mistake, however, consists in confusing progress with emancipation, insisting on implementing the former even when it acts directly against the latter, as has been increasingly evident since 1989. The unreflective adherence to the myth of progress is the error co-originary to the paradigm of the Left and—paraphrasing Engels—is absent in the “socialism of the origins”: that is why today, the recovery of socialism is necessary; that of the Left is impossible.

The original vulnus of the forces of the left quadrant—Michaéa is correct—lies in the mechanical praise of progress and modernization as such; a nucleus that necessarily leads them to reconcile (and, in fact, to merge) with the order of progressive neoliberalism and that it is not imaginable to “extirpate” from the Left’s own code. In fact, this code—Michéa writes—belongs “to the hard core of the metaphysical program of any possible Left, a program it could not renounce, even in part, without completely denying itself.” The myth of progress is the incurable disease in the paradigm of the Left; that which today determines the demand to free ourselves from the Left and its disempowering progressivism in order to resume the path of socialism as the emancipation of the oppressed classes and, with them, of the entire human race.

This hermeneutical framework explains how the Left, which was part of the real opposition to capital in its dialectical phase, becomes useless in the framework of liberal-progressive turbo-capitalism, with which it ends up merging and becoming confused. Also, by virtue of the unbreakable code of progressivism, the opposition to turbo-capitalism can no longer be from the Left (nor, obviously, from the Right), but will have to be founded on new categories, beyond the old cleavage, but nevertheless capable of metabolizing the lessons of Marx and Gramsci, and of their dialectical and socialist anti-capitalism.

The category of “progress” is, in effect, the quid pro quo that has induced the metamorphic new Left to adhere to the rhythm of neoliberal modernization. Until we say goodbye to the myth of progress—and with it to the Left—it will not be possible to pursue a project of real emancipation from capitalism, in a socialist key. This is what Christopher Lasch demonstrated, in the most argued and solid way, in The True and Only Heaven (1991): the thesis according to which “progress cannot be stopped” inevitably brings with it the thesis that “capitalist globalization cannot be stopped.”

The indiscriminate demolition of all figures of limit and tradition—typical of those who are obstinate in “maintaining the left”—does not lead to a socialist society, but to the nightmare of global capitalism; another thing, however, is the reasoned overcoming of limits and traditions that generate oppression and subjugation, such as—among other cases—the servitude of the glebe or prejudices about the anthropological superiority of presumed privileged categories. If capitalism and the Left aim at the indiscriminate deconstruction of all traditions and bonds, socialism should, for its part, selectively protect the bonds and traditions that promote human emancipation and, on the other hand, fight against those that deny it.

In the light of a different perspective, the main task, from an authentically socialist point of view, would be today the revolutionary transformation of that which opposes human emancipation and the selective preservation of that which promotes it. In other words, unlike the Left (which automatically identifies progress and emancipation, even when the former denies the latter), socialism should promote emancipatory progress and oppose disempowering progress.

For example, the neo-language complementing the processes of neo-liberal individualization sanctifies as “progress” the deconstruction of any safety net linked to welfarism or tradition, to community or bonds of solidarity; it liquidates each link in the chain and favors the idea of a society of mutually indifferent and independent atoms, interested only in competing in the arena of the deregulated free market. Would not the priority task of any socialist program be to resist this “progress”—rigorously managed by capital in its own interest—and selectively preserve social rights and class conquests? For the mentis form of the referential new Left, it would be, naturally, the umpteenth form of reactionary and populist opposition to the magnificent future of progress. But, in the light of what has been said, it should be clear in what sense—today hegemonic—there can exist a “progress” that, in relation to emancipation, manifests itself as regressive and, therefore, worthy of being fought.

The deviation consists, ça va sans dire, in accepting indiscriminately as emancipating any modernization and any break with the past, according to the “Orpheus complex.” To overcome the mistreatment and subordination of women is certainly so; but to abandon the study of the Greek language or the wage and labor conquests of the 20th century, is it in the same thing? Clearly, not every step forward is necessarily a step in the right direction. If one finds oneself on the edge of a precipice, the gesture of taking a step forward represents the least desirable and emancipatory progress that can exist. And just as there can be a regressive and counterrevolutionary progressivism, as was that of Marinetti, who theorized the need to kill the “always tedious and oppressive” book, there can also be a communism that is the enemy of progress, as fueled by that of Pasolini or, in a different perspective, that of Benjamin.

Apart from that, the blunder lies in not distinguishing between bonds that enchain and that, as such, deserve to be sacrificed, and bonds that, in a diametrically opposed way, generate freedom and emancipation, and that, therefore, must be selectively protected and preserved. The bonds that enchain, such as the asymmetrical nexus of servitude and lordship on which capital is based, demand to be broken (and instead capital declares them immutable, if not outright just and good). But the bonds that generate freedom and solidarity, such as the family or the school, the trade unions and the “ethical roots” (Wurzeln der Sittlichkeit) of civil society, must be protected (and instead capital aspires to dissolve them, calling this annihilation progress).

In short, the project of a socialist anti-capitalism today must base its program on the emancipation of man and labor, selectively accepting the progress that favors it and rejecting those that deny it.

On the side of the modern adventure—we must insist—progress and emancipation march together. And in most cases, they seem difficult to distinguish. This is precisely what Marx shows in the Manifesto, when he evokes, in a dialectical tone, the emancipatory character of capitalist progress, which is determined in the overcoming of the Ancien Régime, and in the development of modern productive forces.

The modified framework of absolute capitalism, for its part, radically distinguishes progress and emancipation, development of capital and liberation of the dominated classes: to such an extent that—to paraphrase Pasolini—the progress of capital (the “development” of the productive forces and of the corresponding socio-political nexuses) favors dis-emancipation. And it determines social and political regression, disintegrating the very conquests obtained in the framework of dialectical capitalism itself (social rights and spaces of democracy).

It is, in synthesis, the history between 1989 and our present. In the absence of a clear distinction between bourgeoisie and capitalism and between emancipation and progress, from 1968 to the present—and especially since the 1990s of the “short century”—the new Left has fought the bourgeoisie by favoring capitalism and has defended progress by fighting emancipation. The paradox is all the more striking if one considers that in essence capitalism, far from being “static” and conservative, is governed by the incessant transformation of beings and by the permanent revolution of its own conditions.

It was already clear to Marx and Engels when they wrote, in 1848, the Communist Manifesto: the capitalist mode of production lives in the incessant Heraclitean transformation of the world it has forged in its own image and likeness. Its essence lies in the infinite love of unlimited valorization, the secret norm of capital’s innate predatory drive. Unlike the preceding forms of production and social relation, which were based primarily on the conservation of the given conditions and the “unaltered maintenance of the old order of production,” capital exists by permanently revolutionizing the instruments of production and the social relations in which it is structured. It makes incessant mutation its own fundamentum. The total mobilization of beings is its inescapable basis, consistent with the accelerated cycle of the production and circulation of commodities. The only transformation it does not tolerate is, naturally, that which aims at transcending it and generating new and different forms of production and existence.

If the progressive overcoming of the power relations of the pre-modern world was, eo ipso, emancipatory, turbo-capitalist progress as it has unfolded since 1989 is dialectically posed as intrinsically dis-emancipatory and, therefore, worthy of being combated in a socialist key. The principal of the illusions du progress—as Sorel earlier qualified them—and of their religious and intransigent faith resides, in the last instance, in becoming the foundation of the legitimization of the existing, in the form of a dogmatic guarantee according to which what we are today we can continue to be tomorrow in an enhanced form. The ideology of progress, that is to say, of ordered growth according to the temporal figure of the continuum, ends up posing, in the framework of speculative capitalism, as the main obstacle to socialist revolution understood as a “leap” and as a “rupture”—in Leninist terms—of the linear evolution of market society.
It would not be a difficult task, then, to demonstrate how the triumphal march of progress, in which the “victory bulletins” sung by the left-oriented heralds of globalism follow one after the other, is accompanied by social regression and disempowerment of the popular classes. This is translated, for example, in the processes of mass individualization that are determined in the dissolution of the solid and solidary links of the “ethical roots” of society: from the family to the school, from the unions to the power of the State with the capacity to govern the animal spirits of the economy. Such “progress” favors capital and certainly not the national-popular masses of workers, who will be further weakened and deprived of forms of cooperation and protection. For example, the “progress” of the creation of the European Union has led to a hemorrhage of the rights of the working and middle classes. And the same could reasonably be said of the “progress” of the fall of the Berlin Wall and of the “citadel” of social rights, Welfarist conquests and labor protections.

In short, the progressive demolition of social rights and of the Welfarist conquests, in the name of the demands of market rationality, produces “progress” only for the neo-liberal oligarchic bloc, determining, for the “people of the abysses,” growing inequality and poverty, but also the lack of growth of wages and the exponential increase of the working poor. In this regard, it is enough to recall what the economist Marcel Fratzscher showed in Verteilungskampf: Warum Deutschland immer ungleicher wird (Distribution War: Why Germany is Becoming Increasingly Unequal). Fratzscher explains that in 2016 German wages were lower than twenty-five years earlier. The triumphal advance of progress has evidently not involved the working classes of that Germany which—the spokesmen of the neoliberal order claim—is the permanent point d’honneur of progressivism and growth.

On the other hand, can we really celebrate as “progress” the trajectory that—as revealed by Luciano Gallino—led, in the first decade of the new Millennium, to the figure of 50 million poor people in the United States and, in the European Union, to no less than 120 million people (a quarter of the population) being at risk of poverty or social exclusion? Can we really automatically associate the slogan “progress” with the pictures, circulating everywhere, of the increasing number of Greeks, Spaniards and Italians who, in the very progressive neo-liberal European Union, rummage through the garbage in search of food? Or those of the homeless on the streets of the United States, the forge of the glorious progress of capital, who are trying to find shelter from the cold so as not to freeze to death? Or perhaps we would identify as “progress” labor conditions that are increasingly precarious, helpless and abandoned to the unquestioned will of the laws of the market?


Diego Fusaro is professor of the History of Philosophy at the IASSP in Milan (Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies) where he is also scientific director. He is a scholar of the Philosophy of History, specializing in the thought of Fichte, Hegel, and Marx. His interest is oriented towards German idealism, its precursors (Spinoza) and its followers (Marx), with a particular emphasis on Italian thought (Gramsci or Gentile, among others). he is the author of many books, including Fichte and the Vocation of the IntellectualThe Place of Possibility: Toward a New Philosophy of Praxis, and Marx, again!: The Spectre ReturnsThis article appears courtesy of Posmodernia.


Hispanic Conservatism

It is rare for a magazine of political thought to survive for forty years—that is almost three generations. A lot of water has passed under the bridge since the founding of the leading Hispanic conservative magazine Razón Española in 1983, but this exceptional longevity deserves to be highlighted. Throughout this period, “RE” has been a veritable miracle. I said it ten years ago, and I repeat it today. The magazine was born in an extremely hostile context, both politically and intellectually, at the start of the long socialist period (1983-1996). At the time, there was a right-wing party represented by Alianza Popular which, after the demise of the Union of the Democratic Center and the defeat of late October 1982, was on the defensive, ashamed of its status as a right-wing party and anxious to define itself above all as “centerist.” Not for nothing was ex-minister Manuel Fraga, with his usual rudimentary expressions, the first Spanish politician of the time to attempt to theorize the political “center.” Of course, nobody believed him because of his Franco past. It took the emergence of a man as empty, without substance or ideas, as Adolfo Suárez, for the “center” to impose itself in the Spanish political arena, with the consequences that we know today for the whole of society.

For all these reasons, Razón Española has suffered, from the outset, from obvious media, social, political and economic marginalization. Not only from the left, but also from the right. The Alianza Popular refused to acknowledge its existence; it founded a magazine, Veintiuno, an organ of the Cánovas del Castillo Foundation, which soon disappeared without a trace; its political heir, the Partido Popular, also failed to carry out any rigorous or even remotely effective work in terms of debating ideas. The PP abolished the Cánovas del Castillo Foundation to create the Foundation for Social Studies and Analysis (FAES), which proved incapable of providing the party with any kind of coherent ideology. Its organ, Cuadernos de Pensamiento Político, failed to rise to the challenge of the cultural war. Its historical frame of reference remained the Spain of the Restoration (1874-1931), even if, in the erratic wake inaugurated by José María Aznar, it did not spare its “extemporaneous” praise for the minister and president of the republic, Manuel Azaña.

Razón Española was even subjected to a permanent and disgusting smear campaign by Christian Democrat historians such as Javier Tusell Gómez, who publicly demanded in the press, particularly in the Socialist newspaper El País, that it should not be financed by banks and businessmen. But it is also true that today, nobody remembers this mediocre author.

In such an unfavorable context, the normal thing to do would have been to throw in the towel and disappear. Fortunately, this was not to be. Against all odds, the magazine managed to survive and, above all, to unite nearly three generations of intellectuals of often very different sensibilities, united by a clear defense of the traditional worldview. How can we explain this miracle of longevity? In my opinion, there are two main reasons.

Firstly, it is thanks to the energy, will and “charisma” of its founder, Gonzalo Fernández de la Mora y Mon, whose figure and work once served as a binding force, a knot for the magazine’s contributors. His intellectual, personal and moral vigor largely explains the survival of Razón Española, which the Catalan journalist Josep Maria Ruíz Simón once described as “Don Gonzalo’s forge.”

Secondly, it is thanks to the will of its contributors who, free of charge, defying silence, danger and disqualification, decided to collaborate in its pages. For many, including myself, this collaboration was a veritable “catharsis,” a challenge to the prevailing “political correctness;” the conquest, in short, of an authentic space of intellectual freedom. For all of them, RE was the magazine in which it was finally possible to write and say what could not be written or said in most of Spain’s political and intellectual journals. And, alas, we are still here.

Despite its economic, political and media marginalization, Razón Española has, I believe, succeeded in making significant contributions to Spanish conservative thought. As a historian of ideas, I would like to mention just a few.

Firstly, Gonzalo Fernández de la Mora’s exposition of his “razonalista” (“reasonalist” or “reasoning”) philosophy and the political-intellectual project contained in his works. I am referring to La partitocracia (The Partitocracy)—a truly prophetic book—La envidia igualitaria (Egalitarian Envy), Los teóricos izquierdistas de la democracia orgánica, (The Left Theorists of Organic Democracy), Los errores del cambio (The Errors of Political Change), El hombre en desazón (Man in Distress) and Sobre la felicidad (On Happiness).

Secondly, his critical analysis of the current political system, born of the 1978 Constitution, based on his denunciation of partitocracy, the state of autonomous regions, the openly secessionist tendencies of peripheral Catalan and Basque nationalism, the weak political functionality of the monarchy, etc.

Thirdly, his critique of left-wing ideologies. Not only of Marxism, now in decline, but also of what Jean Bricmont has called the “moral Left,” centered not on projects of economic and social transformation, but on the defense of radical feminism, woke culture, so-called alternative sexualities, the stigmatization of demonological and imaginary fascism, racism, xenophobia or a generic “far right.” To put it in Marxist language, the “moral Left” appeals to consciousness rather than to social being, to superstructure rather than infrastructure. The fiscal crisis that began to manifest itself in Europe three decades ago, the end of the “Cold War” and the need for competitiveness engendered by economic globalization have, as we know, led to the obsolescence of the traditional discourse of the Left, including that of social democracy, and to the acceptance of the free market economy, in its neoliberal variant. As Marxist philosopher Nancy Frazer has denounced, the current politics of the entire European and North American Left, championed by the Democratic Party, can be conceptualized as “progressive neoliberalism,” i.e., ultra-liberal economic policies and escapist cultural policies. The current Spanish PP is not far from this political horizon in its day-to-day practice.

Fourthly, the development of alternatives to the 1978 system, summarized in Gonzalo Fernández de la Mora’s article “Las contradicciones de la partitocracia” (“The contradictions of partitocracy”), published in Razón Española. This article advocated, among other measures, the independence of the various powers, the internal democratization of parties, the breaking of the partitocratic monopoly of political representation, the prohibition of party discipline, secret voting, the representation of social interests, referendums, single-member constituencies, open lists and the control of members of the political class. He also defended the presidential republic, opposed to partitocracy, and the defense of the market economy.

Fifthly, it criticized the policies of “historical memory” supported by the Spanish left as a whole.

Sixth, the insistence on the primacy of ideas and the cultural struggle against economic determinism, on both the Right and the Left. Today, as we have already pointed out, a sector of the Left has transformed its intellectual horizon, becoming “idealist” or “culturalist,” while a certain Right has converted to the most static and materialistic economism. Not for nothing did the social-democrat Luis García San Miguel speak of Marxist-Thacherians some years ago. The PP is a striking example of this.

Seventh, the recovery of authors considered “cursed” by today’s politico-cultural-media system, such as Ramiro de Maeztu, Eugenio D’Ors, Marcelino Menéndez Pelayo, Rafael García Serrano, Joaquín Costa, Eugenio Montes, Ernesto Giménez Caballero, Aquilino Duque, Carl Schmitt, and so on.

And, eighthly, the critique of so-called “centrism,” i.e., the politics of “consensus,” in favor of a politics of “agonistic pluralism” (Chantal Mouffe).

II.

When it comes to taking stock of these forty years, what can we learn from them? In my opinion, for the sake of coherence and realism, this assessment must be ambivalent.

On the one hand, it must be stressed that most of the diagnoses of Spain’s socio-political situation defended in the magazine have been confirmed. After a relatively long period of euphoria, triumphalism and obtuse optimism, the flaws inherent in the 1978 regime have become apparent. There is no doubt that some, starting with the PP elites, have not yet understood this, and are acting as if nothing had happened, nostalgic for a “consensus” which, in reality, never existed, because it masked a clear hegemony of the Left on a global scale. They will realize this one day; but, as usual, they will realize it late and badly. For several years now, the most aware minds in Spanish society have been realizing that many historical problems, thought to have been overcome, have reappeared in broad daylight with singular virulence.

The religious question is still topical, even if the Catholic Church has unquestionably ceased to be an important social and moral force. The Catholic Church retains many social, economic and symbolic advantages, but its role is increasingly marginal. Perhaps it is the persistence of its old privileges, which prevent it from exercising its pastoral work more effectively in the face of a state which defines itself as non-denominational, but which in everyday practice, through its legislation, acts as an aggressively secular body. Perhaps a freer Church, with fewer state commitments, could be more effective in its public function. Whatever the case, it seems clear to me that Spanish society has entered the historical period that the Italian philosopher Augusto del Noce called “natural irreligion,” i.e., a spiritual attitude characterized by absolute relativism, where all ideas are considered in relation to the psychological and social situation of those who assert them and, consequently, valued from a utilitarian point of view, as a stimulus for life. Catholics have been unable to prevent legislation on abortion, euthanasia or homosexual marriage. More importantly, when the PP came to power, these laws were not abolished or even reformed. What is more, as we saw recently with Alberto Núñez Feijóo, the PP has taken them on board, making them virtually irreversible. For a consistent Catholic, today’s Spain is undoubtedly a land of mission. That said, issues such as abortion, euthanasia, radical feminism, woke culture, etc. are not essentially confessional; they are negative in themselves, irrespective of religious beliefs. Indeed, there are even theologians, such as the ineffable Juan José Tamayo, who agree with these ideas, asserting that Christian ethics is the heir to Epicurus. Nothing less. In any case, these issues can also be criticized from a secular and agnostic perspective, although the collaboration of Catholics continues to be important here.
Another question, that of the form of government, does not seem to have found a definitive solution either—far from it. In June 2014, Juan Carlos I was forced to give way to his son Felipe VI. The institution and its figure have not withstood the erosion of criticism over the king’s tumultuous private life, the corruption of certain members of the royal family and, most importantly, obvious political inefficiency. As has often been asserted in the pages of Razón Española, we must demand that the monarchical institution be legitimate not only in its origin, but also in its exercise, especially in the defense of national unity, which is increasingly under threat.

Similarly, as the magazine also prophesied, the failure of the political decentralization model is now obvious. Not only has the autonomous state failed to integrate peripheral Catalan and Basque nationalisms, it has also encouraged and consolidated secessionist aspirations. It has also entailed excessive economic costs, making it unviable in the medium term. Finally, its intrinsic dialectic leads to “confederalization” or fragmentation. This process has historically vindicated those who, in the speeches preceding approval of the constitutional text, such as Fernández de la Mora and López Rodó, opposed the autonomist pseudo-solution. The 1978 regime was incapable of creating an integrating symbolism as an expression of national unity. Today, it may be too late.

During these nightmarish years (from the late 1970s onwards), Spain became one of Europe’s most de-industrialized countries, under the guise of integration into the European Economic Community. A process that must one day be analyzed rationally and without triumphalism. Industry’s share of GDP has fallen from 39% in 1975 to 19% today. On this point, see the economic articles by professor and academic Juan Velarde in the magazine. In addition, what has come to be known as the “Spanish demographic winter,” denounced and analyzed in the magazine by Alejandro Macarrón, fundamentally calls into question, among other things, social and cultural continuity and the foundations of the social state.

At the same time, the crisis of representativeness of the political system has worsened. Today, the liberal-democratic model is in crisis, as it is in all Western countries, due to the process of economic globalization and the questioning of the nation-state model. The current political system appears to the Spanish population as a whole to be closed, oligarchic and crudely partitocratic. The two hegemonic parties, the PSOE and the PP, along with peripheral nationalist parties, have, as Fernández de la Mora predicted, colonized all institutions. Partitocracy has reached such a degree of extremism that, as these lines are being written, the country’s political stability depends on the will of a fugitive or convict like Carles Puigdemont, who, at the rate things are going, God forbid, will become the next Catalan president. We do not even know whether it will be the Generalitat or a possible independent Catalan Republic. We have reached the highest level of political cynicism, with Pedro Sánchez, but the horizon is still open to greater heights of ignominy. In fact, I have no confidence whatsoever in the so-called political alternative represented, it is said, by Alberto Núñez Feijóo, the acolyte of his compatriot Mariano Rajoy Brey. With the PP, anything is possible, but especially the worst.

Despite their lucidity, or perhaps because of it, the diagnoses and solutions defended in the pages of Razón Española have not been listened to or followed by the political and media elites who claim to be conservatives. Nevertheless, we are now witnessing a clear renewal of the conservative political camp, which may be more receptive to our messages in the future. In any case, the cultural battle goes on.


Pedro Carlos González Cuevas is a Spanish historian and professor of the history of political ideas at UNED, Madrid. This article appears courtesy of La gaceta de la Iberosfera.


On The Right to Live in Your Own Home and Live with Dignity

1 – During his recent speeches in Marseilles (September 2023), Pope Francis reminded us of the “right of migrants to remain in their homes and lead a dignified life.”

A “right” implies a relationship of exigibility, between the holder of that right and any person, physical or moral, obliged to recognize and respect it. In this context, the holder of the right is the migrant; the person obliged to guarantee it is primarily the state.

The Pope thus understands that the right to remain in one’s home is primary, antecedent to the right to leave one’s homeland. Migration from one country to another must be a free choice, rather than a constraint for many, provoked by violence of all kinds: hunger and thirst, war, misery, persecution, ideological madness. This notion deserves a closer look.

2 – In the expression “chez soi” (“in your own home”), the word “chez” comes from the Latin “casa” (“house”), which gave rise to “case” in French. It designates the fundamental dwelling, the “thatched farmhouse” of the song, which remains at the bottom of one’s heart wherever one goes, and whose intimacy and personal character is emphasized by the pronoun “soi” (“your own”).

The “chez-soi” is thus not just a legal domicile, nor a more or less ephemeral residence. It is the human, protective place, inscribed in a physical and spiritual space, where warm, living roots have taken root. The place of initial “little things” where, as in César Isella’s poem, everyone always returns, in one way or another, because it is the place “where they loved life.”

The “right to stay at your own home” is therefore the right to keep these roots, and to continue to live from them, where they were born. A rootedness that cannot, however, retain this vital virtue unless it is itself continually nourished and invigorated. No one settles near a dried-up tree or a dried-up spring without being forced, sooner or later, to migrate.

For a “home” to remain such, its roots must be nourished by a tradition, both cultural and religious, that is preserved and enriched, a tradition that is nothing other than the permanence of the identity of a “home” renewed over time.

3 – The purpose of the “right to remain in one’s own home” is therefore not limited to the physical maintenance of a place. The purpose assigned to it confirms this. The right to remain in one’s own home is “to lead a life of dignity.” The right to remain in one’s own home thus implies the right to a dignified life.

Dignified life” does not simply mean “feeding, growing and dying by oneself” (Aristotle, Treatise on the Soul, II 1, 412-414) in a chosen place, after having enjoyed it in a variety of ways. Nor does it simply mean living in conditions of material or economic sufficiency, as expressions such as “dignified housing” or “dignified working conditions” might suggest.

Dignity, in fact, is an essential and inalienable property of the person, insofar as he or she is rational and free. It is the radiance of “that which is most perfect in all nature; namely, that which subsists in a reasonable nature” (Thomas Aquinus, Summa theologica, Ia, q. 29, a. 3.). It follows that “dignified life” is that which enables everyone, according to their natural vocation, to live and grow to the height of humanity, the material conditions mentioned above being ordered to this vocation. Respect for natural law, which reflects divine wisdom, the promotion of the family as the original “home,” education in truth, love and transcendence, and the cultivation and practice of justice are the primary conditions for a dignified life.

4 – Thus founded on the principle of human dignity, which French law recognizes must be protected against any infringement (art. 16 of the French Civil Code), the “right to remain in one’s own home and lead a dignified life” reveals its true dimension: it is a fundamental right with, as such, universal value.

In this respect, it is not the privilege of the migrant. Its purpose is not simply to measure the freedom to come and go, to stay at home or go into exile. This right is the ultimate expression of every human being’s natural inclination to live in society, not only to find security there, but also—and above all—to find and keep that deep-rooted “home” that is destined to be the nurturing place, familial and social, for his or her total human, material and spiritual fulfillment.

The “right to stay at home and lead a dignified life” also belongs to citizens of host countries. Being universal, it is fundamentally equal for those who welcome migrants into their homes and for those who, having seen this right violated, are forced into exile.

Two conclusions, at least, can be drawn from this, which are rarely present in discourses on migration.

5 – The first is that the fundamental nature of the right being invoked conditions not only the political freedoms of those who hold it. It also sheds light on the state of health of societies that are, or are not, in a position to guarantee and promote it.

Societies that not only exhaust the economic capacities of their members, but also feed systemic lies and manipulation, moral and mental degradation, educational ruin, sanitized homicide or other forms of violence—physical, legal or ideological—contrary to the dignity of the human person, are certainly not the right setting for the creation or permanence of a “home” enabling its members to grow humanely.

So it is, of course, with the societies that migrants are forced to flee, precisely because of this. But the same is true of the societies they join, when these societies offer them nothing but their materialism, their self-hatred, their break with natural law and the degradation of their culture and mores. So, it is hardly surprising that these migrants cannot find a national “home” in which to integrate. Failing that, they prefer to try and rebuild the community they were forced to leave.

Nor are migrants the only victims of this decivilization. The first are the citizens of these societies, where the common good, in particular, is no longer the raison d’être of the law. Many of them are struggling against their own uprooting and that of their children. As a result, they are at risk of becoming exiles from within, forced to nurture a “home” against the grain, from family to workplace to school, that preserves their Christian identity, historical tradition, language and culture.

6 – The second conclusion is that if this “right to remain in one’s own home and lead a dignified life” is fundamental and universal, and thus equal for all, then it is particularly binding on the migrant himself. They are obliged to respect it in those who welcome them—or are unable to welcome them. For them, too, the right to “stay at home and live with dignity” and in peace is prior to the right to migrate. It is therefore prior to the rights of those who intend to migrate home. Indeed, it is even among those who do not migrate, by hypothesis, that the exercise of the right to remain at home to live with dignity and in peace is perfect.

It is therefore not without subversion of the natural order that we try, under the guise of charity, to make the citizens of host countries believe that their right to stay at home should take a back seat to the right to migrate of those who cross their borders. In the dialectic imposed by Pope Francis between the “culture of humanity and fraternity,” supposedly virtuous, and the “culture of indifference,” supposedly criminal (Pope Francis, Address, Palais du Pharo, Marseille, September 23, 2023), there is a legal and human space which is that of respect for the fundamental rights of all.

When the phenomenon of migration undermines or threatens the security, habitat, culture, way of life or religion of a host country, to the point where its citizens no longer feel at home and can no longer live there with dignity and security, and are sometimes forced to flee, it necessarily undermines what is, for them, a fundamental right. To this extent, the phenomenon is a grave social injustice, commensurate with the rights it violates, which cannot be ignored.

7 – That is why, between the right of some to migrate and the right of others to “stay at home” to live in peace and dignity, a measure is needed to determine the balance between them. This measure is that of the common good—or, if you like, the general interest. Each State, which is its natural guardian, just as it is the guardian of the fundamental rights of its citizens, has the right, and even the duty, to establish this measure, so that the rights of the former do not prevail over the rights of the latter.

This is the condition and limit of any migration policy. It requires the government to determine when it can welcome immigrants, and under what economic and social conditions, and when it cannot. It requires the government to know how to refuse immigration when it appears that it can no longer be integrated and infringes on citizens’ fundamental rights.

To see this as a “criminal indifference” contrary to charity is to be fooled by political fideism, whereas the demands of charity never erase those of nature. Yet for a long time now, we have been hearing the much-needed lesson of Saint Thomas, which no longer seems to be understood, but which must be repeated over and over again: “Divine right, which proceeds from grace, does not take away human right, which proceeds from natural reason” (Thomas Aquinus, Summa theologica, IIa IIae, q. 10 a. 10).


Patrick de Pontonx is a lawyer based in Paris, France.


Featured: Salon, anonymous, 1857.


The Great Substitution: The Death of Europe in Two Decades

Guillaume Faye (1949—2019) was a French writer, political theorist and an important thinker of the French Nouvelle Droite.

The debate on Islam, secularism, integration, assimilation of migrants, “communitarianism,” anti-Islamist “deradicalization,” etc., is disconnected from reality and common sense. It is intellectualized… It is a word-salad of ideological postulates and pious wishes. But the heart of the problem is practical, material, demographically quantitative and, moreover, ethnic. Ten principles should be self-evident on this issue.

1. Not only Fight the Effects of Immigration, But Above all its Causes

To want to prohibit veils in public places, to control the financing and height of mosque minarets, to refuse in schools, hospitals—and everywhere else—Islamic practices, etc.—and to do so through laws and regulations; all this is necessary. But we will have lost from the start, if we do not understand that all this is also insufficient. All this will fail if the source of the problem is not addressed. And this is both purely quantitative and demographic, but also ethnic: the exponentially increasing immigration from outside Europe of a Muslim majority and the markedly higher fertility of immigrants. This is the double cause to be taken into consideration.

2. Thinking in the Long Term and Not in the Short Term

Mathematically, if nothing is done to block the flow of immigration, if no “remigration” (return to one’s own country) is implemented, France (and the same applies to most European countries) will not be an ethnically “European” country in the second half of the 21st century and Islam will be in a clear majority. Our countries will be Afro-Arab Muslim countries that will experience pauperization and incessant ethno-religious violence, with a massive exodus of the last Europeans of origin, in addition to a probable civil war of ethnic character and endemic form. It is the iron law of demography (immigration and birth rate). In this case, the European countries will simply disappear, and their very name may even disappear.

But this medium- and long-term perspective is totally ignored by the oligarchies (the current leaders will be dead or nonagenarians when the final collapse occurs) who think and act only in the short term. It is the reflection of a society of the immediate, which does not project itself into the future, which forgets its past, which takes Prozac or smokes joints to avoid thinking about the present.

3. To Understand that the Forces Wishing the Ethnic Destruction of Europe are Working for it

These forces infiltrate the various States, the European technocracy, the media, partyocratic (including the French FN) and trade union oligarchies. They impose the immigrationist ideology and collaborate in Islamization.

Fundamentally anti-democratic (“anti-populist,” as they say in their jargon), animated by a nihilistic feeling of hatred towards the culture, history and roots of the European nations, objective allies of invasive Islam, these forces push the political authorities of the right or left to the ethnocide of the Europeans. Everything is done to let in the migratory tide and to destroy the cultural roots of European identities, especially in public education and the media.

4. Ethnopluralism is like the Water Engine: It has Never Worked Anywhere and will Never Work

It is an idea to be buried in the cemetery of utopias, like communism. There is an incompatibility of common life (territorial cohabitation) in the same political unit between ethnically different populations: especially if some of them are Arab-Muslim or African. The exceptions are nothing more than artificial bubbles composed of elites—especially for those who live in an ethnic zone, the impossibility of ethnopluralism (already revealed by Aristotle) has become more than clear.

And yet, to raise such a thing is a taboo, an ideological prohibition. A taboo, an impossibility that the immigrationist and anti-racist elites do not experience for the simple reason that these people, contrary to the “poor whites,” do not live and are never in contact with their beloved Arab-Muslim or African immigrants, who are for them only pure abstractions. That is why they spread for others—not for themselves—the concept of “living together.”

5. Fighting “Communitarianism?” Too Late!

The fight against “communitarianism” (that trick word used to mask the term “ethnic colonization”) is useless, just as the fight against Islamization and radicalization is useless. It is too late. At the beginning of the 1980s of the last century, it was still possible to think of integrating and assimilating non-European immigrants into the “Republic” and the Franco-European culture. But this is strictly impossible since they represent considerable percentages, the majority in certain urban areas. It is useless to try to improve things: it is necessary to turn the question around. That is to say, to block the migratory flows and to reverse them.

6. We must Abandon the Idea that they are “Our Compatriots.” How can They be, if They do not Want to be?

It is strictly impossible to constitute a united nation with a growing proportion of Arab-Muslim and African populations, even if they speak the language of the country. The candor of the immigrationists and assimilationists in wanting these millions of immigrants or children of immigrants to be “our compatriots” is equivalent to the hostile refusal, on the part of an increasing number of them—especially among the young—to consider themselves French—or Spanish, German, etc.—even if they have the nationality. They do not want to integrate or assimilate. More and more young people of Arab-Muslim, African or Turkish origin, all over Europe, even with legal European nationalities, consider themselves citizens of their countries of origin, while Europe is detested as a land of conquest. They have racist reflexes. That is their problem.

7. To Want to Create an “Islam of France” is a Ridiculous Utopia

Islam is not only incompatible with the “Republic,” it is incompatible with everything that is not itself, be it religion or culture. It implies a deep psychic, ethnic rootedness. De Gaulle had understood this, hence his rejection of French Algeria as an appendage of France. The idea of a moderate and reformed “Islam of the Enlightenment” is a dead end. Franco-compatible or republican-compatible Muslims are utopian minorities, or are insincere tricksters. Islam is intrinsically hostile to everything that represents European civilization. The only ideologies that have flirted with it are totalitarian: formerly Nazism and currently Marxism, with “Islamo-leftism.” And this is not by chance.

8. Against Islamic Terrorism: De-Islamizing France and Europe

It is not only by spying and trying to dismantle Islamist networks that attacks will be prevented, nor by programming ridiculous and ineffective (and counterproductive) “de-radicalization” operations in prisons (schools of crime). It is, above all, by prohibiting the entry into the territory (zero immigration) of any new Muslim immigrant and reversing the migratory flows through massive deportations. It is wrong to say it, but the risk of terrorist attacks in a Western country is proportional to the numerical importance of its Muslim population.

9. Admit that the Muslim and Arab-African Influence reaches the Entire National Territory

The cause of all problems is demographic and mathematical. Patricio Riberiro, general secretary of the Synergie-Officiers police union, stated: ” “No place is immunized: the phenomenon of communitarization and the insularity of a lot of neighborhoods can be seen everywhere, with the infiltration and invasion of schools, into sports associations. It’s an ocean in the background.” He mentioned that “the denial of reality on the part of a certain number of elected officials” reveals, in effect, “the acquiescence and intellectual connivance.” He thinks that “this cynical clientelism leads us to catastrophe.” Nothing further to add. The problem is strictly demographic, nothing more. For reasons of ideological and semantic correctness, we speak of “communitarianism,” an appalling neologism; whereas it is simply a question of an external invasion (immigration) and an internal invasion (birth rate).

On the other hand, the Algerian writer Boualem Sansal points out: ‘The Islamic order is trying to install itself in France, it is a patent fact: in many places it is already installed” (FigaroVox, “Interview” 17/6/2016).

10. Integration and Assimilation: Mission Impossible

Integration (i.e., the partial adoption of the host country’s customs, such as language, while retaining some of their original customs and practices) is possible if immigrants represent a maximum of 5% of the host population. For assimilation (the total adoption of the host culture and the abandonment of one’s own) the percentage is even lower. To the disappointment of all the discourses (of the FN, the right and the center), neither integration nor assimilation is possible for a mathematical reason: the proportion of immigrants is too high. The masses of children of African or Arab origin will never be able, with individual exceptions, of course, to be assimilated or really “Frenchified” by the school. Universal, supra-cultural, supra-ethnic France is an impossibility, the fruit of an abstract intellectual utopia constructed in times when mass immigration did not exist.

Conclusion: Solving the Global Problem will be an Enormous Shock

The problems of growing communitarianism, of “ghettoization,” of frictions and incessant confrontations with the expanding Muslim customs that degrade the daily life of the European natives; the problems of multiform criminality in constant rise, of the sinking of the level of a multiethnic public school, of terrorism, obviously; none of this can be solved by simple internal policies that will never be up to the level of the problems.

The British referendum in favor of “Brexit” has been, in reality, a desperate protest vote of the British popular classes against immigration. But will a Britain, separated from the EU—if the referendum is respected—limit immigration? It is not certain.

The general solution will come, first of all, from the reestablishment of national borders and the total interruption of all extra-European immigration, even legal, for work and family reunification. Secondly, from a resolute policy of expulsion of all illegal immigrants and immigrants in an irregular situation and “remigration” for those in a regular situation. As for those who, because of the law of the soil (which must be imperatively forbidden), are “paper French” (or of any other European nationality), their situation will be the most difficult to resolve, but it must be done.

True, these solutions require immense courage. They will provoke clashes, dramas and conflicts that will have to be faced. But continuing to do nothing will lead to an even worse situation. The equation is simple: as soon as an immigration-drainage is authorized (encouraged) by the State for forty years, with a reproduction rate two to three times higher among immigrant populations, 90 percent of whom are Muslims, and a flight of young elites, France and the other European countries will be dead in twenty years.


Featured: Scene of the Flood, by Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson; painted ca. 1806. [The article appears through the kind courtesy of El Manifiesto.


Eschatologies of a Multipolar World

BRICS: The Creation of Multipolarity

XV BRICS Summit: The Multipolar World is Established

The XV BRICS summit made a historic decision to admit six more countries to the organization—Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Thus, in fact, the formation of the core of the multipolar world was completed.

Although BRICS, formerly BRIC, was a conditional association of semi-peripheral (according to Wallerstein) or “second world” countries, the dialogue between these countries, which are not part of the structure of the collective West (NATO and other rigidly unipolar organizations dominated by the United States), gradually outlined the contours of an alternative world order. If the Western civilization considers itself to be the only one, and this is the essence of globalism and unipolarity, the BRICS countries represented sovereign and independent civilizations, different from the Western one, with a long history and a completely original system of traditional values.

Initially, the BRIC association, created in 2006 at the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin, included four countries—Brazil, Russia, India and China. Brazil, the largest power in South America, represented the Latin American continent. Russia, China and India are of sufficient scale on their own to be considered civilizations. But they also represent more than nation-states. Russia is the vanguard of Eurasia, the Eurasian “Greater Space.” China is responsible for a significant area of the contiguous powers of Indochina. India also extends its influence beyond its borders—at least to Bangladesh and Nepal.

When South Africa joined the BRIC countries in 2011 (hence the acronym BRICS—the “S” at the end of South Africa), the continent was symbolically represented as the largest African country.

7 Civilizations (1 vs. 6)

At the XV summit, held from August 22 to 24, 2023 in Johannesburg, the final formation of the multipolar club took place. The entry of three Islamic powers—Shiite Iran and Sunni Saudi Arabia and the UAE—was fundamental. Thus, the direct participation in the multipolar world of the entire Islamic civilization, represented by both branches—Sunnism and Shiism—was secured. In addition, along with Portuguese-speaking Brazil, Spanish-speaking Argentina, another strong and independent power, joined BRICS. Back in the mid-twentieth century, theorists of South American unification into a consolidated large space—above all Argentine general Juan Perón and Brazilian president Getúlio Vargas—considered a decisive rapprochement between Brazil and Argentina to be the first step in this process. If this were achieved, the process of integration of the Latin American ecumene would be irreversible. And this is exactly what has happened now in the context of the accession of the two major powers of South America, Brazil and Argentina, to the multipolar club.

Ethiopia’s acceptance is also highly symbolic. It is the only African country that has remained independent throughout the colonial era, preserving its sovereignty, its independence and its unique culture (Ethiopians are the oldest Christian people). Combined with South Africa, Ethiopia is strengthening its presence in the multipolar club of the African continent.

In fact, in the new composition of BRICS, we get a complete model of unification of all poles—civilizations, large spaces, except for the West, which is desperate to preserve its hegemony and unipolar structure. But now it faces not disparate and fragmented countries full of internal and external contradictions, but a united force of the majority of humanity, determined to build a multipolar world.

This multipolar world consists of the following civilizations:

  1. The West (USA+EU and their vassals, which includes, alas, the once proud and distinctive Japan);
  2. China (+Taiwan) with its satellites;
  3. Russia (as an integrator of the entire Eurasian space);
  4. India and its zone of influence;
  5. Latin America (with Brazil + Argentina at its core);
  6. Africa (South Africa + Ethiopia, with Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, etc., emerging from French colonial influence).
  7. Islamic world (in both versions—Shiite Iran, and Sunni Saudi Arabia and UAE).

At the same time, one civilization—the Western one—claims hegemony, while the six others deny it this right, accepting only a multipolar system and recognizing the West only as one of the civilizations, along with others.

Thus, the rightness of Samuel Huntington, who saw the future in the return of civilizations, was confirmed in practice, while the fallacy of Fukuyama’s thesis, who believed that the global hegemony of the liberal West (the end of history) has already been achieved, became obvious. Therefore, Fukuyama can only doomedly lecture Ukrainian neo-Nazis, the last hope of globalists to stop the onset of multipolarity, for which Russia, in Ukraine, is fighting today.

August 2023 can be considered the birthday of the multipolar world.

Having outlined multipolarity, it is time to take a closer look at how the civilizational poles themselves interpret the situation in which they find themselves. And here we should take into account that virtually every sovereign civilization has its own idea of the structure of history, the nature of historical time, its direction and the end of history. Contrary to Fukuyama, who ambitiously proclaimed a single end of history (in his liberal version), each sovereign civilization operates with its own understanding, interpretation and description of the end of history. Let us briefly review this situation.

Each Civilization has its own Idea of the End of the World

Each pole of the multipolar world, that is, each civilization, has its own version of eschatology, somewhere more and somewhere less explicit.

“Eschatology” is the doctrine of the end of the world or the end of history. Eschatologies form a significant part of religious doctrines, but have secular versions as well. Any idea of the linear direction of the historical process and its supposed finale can be considered an “eschatology.”

The multipolar world consists of several civilizations or “big spaces” with a completely unique and original system of traditional values. This is the pole (not the individual state). A pole is precisely a civilization. Each civilization has its own idea of the nature of the historical process, its direction and its goal, and thus its own eschatology.

In some “large spaces” there are even several versions of eschatology, and a number of relatively small political formations, which cannot claim the pole in any way, nevertheless sometimes have a special and even developed eschatology.

Let us outline the different types in the most general terms.

Eschatologies of the West

Eschatology in Western Christianity

Western Christianity originally had the same eschatological doctrine as Eastern Christianity, being one. In Christianity—in both Catholicism and Orthodoxy (and even Protestantism)—the end of the world is considered inevitable, since the world and its history are finite and God is infinite. After the coming of Christ, the world moves toward its end, and the return of Christ itself is seen as taking place “in the last days.” The entire history of the Christian Church is a preparation for the end times, the Last Judgment, and the Second Coming of Christ. Christianity teaches that before the Second Coming there will be a general apostasy in mankind, nations will turn away from Christ and His Church, and will rely only on their own strength (humanism). Later, mankind will degenerate completely and the Antichrist, the messenger of the Devil, the “son of perdition” will seize power.

The Antichrist will rule for a short time—3.5 years, “a time, two times and half a time”), the saints and the prophets Elijah and Enoch, who will have returned to earth, will denounce him, and then the Second Coming, the resurrection of the dead and the Last Judgment will take place. This is what every Christian is obliged to believe.

At the same time, Catholicism, which gradually separated from the united Orthodox trunk, believed that the stronghold of Christians should be the Catholic Church under the Pope, the “City of God,” and the retreat would affect only earthly political entities, the “City of Earth.” There is a spiritual battle between the heavenly politics of the Vatican and the earthly politics of secular monarchs. In Orthodoxy, unlike Catholicism, the main obstacle in the way of the Antichrist is the Holy Empire, eternal Rome.

Traditional Christian eschatology and exactly this—partly pessimistic—view of the vector of history prevailed in Europe until the beginning of the New Age. And this is how traditional Catholics, unaffected by the spirit of modernity, who are becoming fewer and fewer in the West, continue to think about the end of the world.

Protestant eschatologies are more bizarre. In the Anabaptists of Münster or the Czech Hussites, the Second Coming was preceded by the establishment of universal equality (eschatological communism), the abolition of class hierarchies and private property.

Recently, under the influence of modernization and political correctness, many Protestant denominations and the Anglican Church have revised their view of eschatology, finally breaking with the ancient Christian tradition.
Masonic Eschatology: The Theory of Progress

At the origins of the Western European civilization of Modernity is European Freemasonry, in the midst of which the idea of “social progress” was born. The idea of progress is a direct antithesis of the Christian understanding of history; it rejects apostasy, the Antichrist, the Last Judgment, the resurrection of the dead and the very existence of the soul.

Masons believed that humanity develops progressively: in the beginning savagery (not earthly paradise), then barbarism (not traditional society), then civilization (culminating in the European New Age and the Enlightenment, i.e., secular atheistic societies, based on a materialistic scientific worldview). Civilization in its formation passes a number of stages from traditional confessions to the humanistic cult of the Great Architect of the Universe and further to liberal democracy, where science, atheism and materialism will fully triumph. And conservative Freemasonry (Scottish Rite) stopped usually with the cult of the Great Architect of the Universe (that is, with deism—the recognition of an undefined non-denominational “god”), and the more revolutionary, the Grand Orient rite was called to go further—to the complete abolition of religion and social hierarchy. The Scottish Rite stands for classical liberalism (big capital), the Grand Orient and other revolutionary lodges stand for liberal democracy (intensive growth of the middle class and redistribution of capital from the big bourgeoisie to the middle and small bourgeoisie).

But in Freemasonry, in both versions, we see a clearly directed vector to the end of history; that is, to the construction of modern progressive global civilization. This is the ideology of globalism in two versions—conservative (gradual) and offensive (revolutionary-democratic).

England: The Fifth Monarchy

During Cromwell’s English Revolution, the theory of the Fifth Monarchy developed in Protestant circles under the influence of Jewish circles and Sabbataism (notably the Dutch Rabbi Manasseh ben-Israel). The traditional Christian doctrine of the Four World Kingdoms (Babylonian, Persian, Greek and Roman) was declared insufficient, and after the fall of Rome (which for Protestants meant the refusal to recognize the authority of the Pope and the overthrow of the monarchy, regicide) the Fifth Kingdom was to come. Earlier, a similar idea had arisen in Portugal in relation to the maritime Portuguese Empire and the special mission of the “vanished King” Sebastian. The Portuguese and Portuguese-centered (mystical-monarchical) version was passed on to the Portuguese Jewish converts (Marranos) and Jews exiled to Holland and Brazil. One of them was Manasseh ben-Israel, from whom this theory passed on to English Protestants and Cromwell’s inner circle (Thomas Harrison).

Proponents of this theory considered Cromwell himself to be the future world Monarch of the Fifth Monarchy. The Fifth Monarchy was to be distinguished by the abolition of Catholicism, hereditary monarchical power, estates and to represent the triumph of bourgeois democracy and capitalism.

This was continued by the current of “British Israelism,” which declared the English to be the “ten lost tribes of Israel” and spread the belief in the coming world domination of England and the Anglo-Saxon race. The world rule of the “New Israelites” (Anglo-Saxons) was seen beyond the Four Kingdoms and broke with traditional Christian eschatology, as the Fifth Monarchy meant the destruction of traditional Christian kingdoms and the rule of the “chosen people” (not Jews, but the English).

From England, extreme Protestant sects transferred these ideas to the USA, which was created as a historical embodiment of the Fifth Monarchy. Hence the American eschatology in the mythologies of William Blake (in America a Prophecy the USA is represented by the giant Orcus freeing himself from the chains of the old god), who was also an adherent of the theory of “British Israelism.” Blake embodied these ideas in his poem “Jerusalem,” which became the unofficial anthem of England.

USA: Dispensationalism

In the United States, the ideas of “British Israelism” and the Fifth Monarchy were developed in some Protestant denominations and became the basis for a special current of dispensationalism based on the ideas of the Plymouth Brethren (preacher John Darby) and the Scofield edition of the Bible, where the eschatological interpretation in a dispensationalist way is incorporated into the biblical text in such a way that to ordinary people it seems to be a single narrative.

Dispensationalism considers Anglo-Saxons and Protestants (“twice born”) to be the chosen people, and applies to them all the prophecies about the Jews. According to this doctrine, mankind lives at the end of the last “dispensation” of the cycle, and the Second Coming of Christ will soon take place, and all the faithful will be raptured into heaven (the Rapture). But this will be preceded by a final battle (Armageddon) with the “king of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal,” which from the 19th century to the present day has meant Russia. Before this Russia would invade Palestine and, there, fight with the “twice-born” (Anglo-Saxons), and then be defeated by them. After that, there would be a mass conversion of Jews to Protestantism and an ascent to heaven (by means of miracles or spacecraft).

In recent decades, this current has merged with political Zionism and has become the basis of the ideology and geopolitics of the American neocons.

France: The Great Monarch

In France, as early as the late Middle Ages and the dawn of the Modern Age, an eschatological theory of the Great Monarch developed, which claimed that a secret French king, chosen by God, would appear at the end of time and save humanity—from decadence, Protestantism, and materialism. This version of eschatology is Francocentric and conservative, and circulated in mystically oriented circles of the aristocracy. The difference from traditional Catholic eschatology is that the French king, rather than the Vatican See, is the barrier to the Antichrist.

Some researchers consider Gaullism to be a secular and simplified geopolitical version of the Great Monarch’s eschatology. General De Gaulle advocated the unification of the peoples of Europe (primarily the French, Germans and Russians) and against NATO and Anglo-Saxon hegemony. The French writer Jean Parvulesco (following Raymond Abellio) called it “the mystical dimension of Gaullism.”

But the vast majority of the French ruling class is dominated by Masonic eschatology—with the exact opposite understanding.

Italy: The Ghibellines and the Greyhound

In the Middle Ages, the confrontation between the Roman throne and imperial power—after Charlemagne proclaimed himself “Emperor”—at times became extremely acute. This led to the creation of two parties—the Guelphs, supporters of the Pope, and the Ghibellines, supporters of the Emperor. They were most widespread in Italy, the possession of which was the basis for German kings to be recognized as Emperors of the (Western) Roman Empire after coronation in Rome.

The poet Dante was a supporter of the Ghibellines and encoded in his poem, Divine Comedy, eschatological teaching of the Ghibellines that after the temporary rule of the Ghibellines and the complete degradation of the Catholic Church, a true Ghibelline monarch would come to Europe, who would revive the morals and spirituality of Western civilization. He is symbolically represented in the figure of the greyhound (veltro) and the mystical number DXV (515), which yields, after rearrangement of letters/digits the word, DVX, “leader.” Dante expounded the ideas of the World Monarchy in a separate treatise. Here again the eschatological theme is connected with monarchical power—and to a greater extent than with the Catholic Church. For Dante, the French monarchy was seen as being on the side of the Antichrist, as was the Roman throne that had risen against the Emperor.

Germany: Hegel and the End of History

The original version of eschatology is given in Hegel’s philosophy. He sees history as a dialectical process of the scattering of the Spirit through Nature, and then a new gathering of the particles of the Spirit in an enlightened society. The culmination of this process according to Hegel would be the creation of a unified German state on the basis of the Prussian monarchy (during his lifetime it did not exist). In this enlightened monarchy, the cycle of the history of the Spirit would be completed. These ideas influenced the Second Reich and Bismarck, and later in a distorted form Hitler’s Third Reich. It was Hegel who put forward the thesis of the “end of history” in a philosophical context, combining in a peculiar combination Christian eschatology (including the figure of the Christian ruler) and a special mystical-monarchical interpretation of social progress (as a preliminary stage before the creation of the world empire of philosophers).

The German philosopher (Catholic) Carl Schmitt correlated the idea of the Reich with the function of the Katechon, the restainer, which was the meaning of imperial power in Byzantium and which was usurped (according to the Orthodox) in the ninth century by the Frankish Emperor Charlemagne. This line was partly in line with the Ghibelline tradition.

The German Jew, Karl Marx, built a theory of communism (the end of history) on an inverted materialist version of Hegelianism, and the Russian philosopher Alexandre Kojève tried to identify the end of history with globalism and the planetary triumph of liberalism. But it is important that Hegel himself, unlike his sectarian interpreters, was an eschatological, Germano-centered monarchist.

Iberia: The Habsburgs and Planetary Evangelization

Eschatology in the Spanish version was linked to the colonization of the Americas and the mission of Charles V Habsburg and his dynastic successors. Since in the prophecies about the end of the world (Pseudo-Methodius of Patara), the sign of the end of the world was the spread of the Gospel to all mankind and the establishment of a worldwide Christian empire under a Catholic world king. The geographical discoveries and the establishment of vast colonies by Spain gave reason to consider the Spanish Habsburgs—above all Charles V and Philip II—as contenders for the role of world monarch. This Catholic-monarchical version, partly consonant with the French version, but in contrast focused on the Austrian Emperors, the traditional opponents of the French dynasty. Christopher Columbus was a proponent of an eschatological world empire during the reigns of the Catholic kings Isabella and Ferdinand, and reflected his eschatological views in The Book of Prophecies, compiled on the eve of his fourth voyage to the Americas and completed immediately after his return.

After the Bourbon reign in Spain, this eschatological line disappeared. Its echoes, partly, can be found in Catholic circles in Latin America and especially in the Jesuits.

The Fifth Empire in the Portuguese version and its Brazilian offshoot are generally close in type to this version of eschatology.

Israel: The Territory of Mashiach

The State of Israel was established in 1948 in Palestine, as a realization of the eschatological aspirations of the Jewish Diaspora, who had been waiting for two millennia for a return to the Promised Land. Jewish eschatology is based on the belief in the chosenness of the Jews and their special role in the end times, when the Jewish Mashiach will come and Jews will rule the world. It is the best studied. In many ways, it is Jewish eschatology that has determined the main scenarios of end-of-the-world visions in monotheistic traditions.

Modern Israel was created as a state prepared for the coming of Mashiach, and if this function is taken out of the picture, its very existence loses its meaning—first of all, in the eyes of the Jews themselves.

Geopolitically, Israel cannot claim to be an independent civilization, an empire, whose scale is necessary for full participation in global eschatological processes. However, if we take into account the rapprochement of political Zionists in the United States with neocons and Protestant dispensationalists, the role of Jews in the last century in the Masonic lodges, the influence of the Diaspora in the ruling and especially economic elites of the West, then the whole picture changes, and the basis for serious eschatological events turns out to be significant.

The Kabbalistic interpretation of the migration route of the bulk of the Jewish Diaspora describes it as following the Shekhinah (God’s Presence) in exile (according to Rabbi Alon Anava). At the beginning of the Galut (dispersion), the bulk of the Jews were concentrated in the Middle East (Mizrahi). Then the Shekhinah began to rise to the north and the Caucasus (Khazar Kaganate). From there, the path of the Shekhinah led to Western Russia, to the Baltics and to Eastern Europe (Ashkenazi). Then its movement led the Ashkenazi to go deeper into Western Europe, and made the Sephardim move from the Iberian Peninsula to Holland and the American colonies. Finally, the bulk of the Jews concentrated in the United States, where they still represent a majority compared to Jewish communities in other countries. Thus, the Shekhinah remains in the United States. The second largest community of Jews is in Israel. When the proportions shift in Israel’s favor, it will mean that the Shekhinah, after a two-thousand-year circle, has returned to Palestine.

Then we should expect the building of the Third Temple and the coming of the Mashiach. This is the logic of Jewish eschatology, clearly visible in the political processes unfolding around Israel. This idea is adhered to by the majority of religious Zionists, who make up a significant percentage of Jews both in Israel and in the Diaspora. But any Jew, wherever he or she may be and whatever ideology he or she may share, cannot fail to recognize the eschatological nature of the modern state of Israel and, consequently, the far-reaching goals of its government.

Orthodox Eschatology

Greeks: The Marble Emperor

In the Orthodox population of Greece, after the fall of Byzantium and the seizure of power by the Ottomans, an eschatological theory developed about the coming of an Orthodox liberator-king—the Marble Emperor. His figure was sometimes interpreted as the return of Constantine XII Paleologos, who, according to legend, did not die when the Turks took Constantinople, but was carried away by an angel to the Marble Gate and there awaits his hour to free the Orthodox (Greeks) from the oppression of foreigners.

In some versions of the eschatological legend this mission was entrusted to the “red-haired king of the north,” by whom in the 18th century many Athonite monks understood the Russian Emperor.

These are echoes of the classical Byzantine doctrine of the Katechon, the “restainer” who is destined to become the main obstacle in the way of the “son of perdition” (Second Epistle of Saint Paul the Apostle to the Thessalonians) and of the Tsar-Savior from the book of Pseudo-Methodius of Patara. Greek political-religious thought retained this eschatological component during the Ottoman period, although after the liberation from the Turks, Greek statehood began to be built on Masonic liberal-democratic models (despite the brief period of rule by a number of European dynasties), completely breaking with the Byzantine heritage.

Russia: The King of the Third Rome, the Savior of the Sects, and Communism

In Russia, eschatology took a stable form by the end of the fifteenth century, which was reflected in the theory of Moscow as the Third Rome. It asserted that the mission of the Katechon, the restainer, after the fall of Constantinople passed to Muscovite Russia, which became the nucleus of the only Orthodox Empire—that is, Rome. The Grand Duke Moscow changed the status and became Tsar, Vasilevs, Emperor, restraining.

Henceforth, the mission of Russia and the Russian people was to slow down the coming of the “son of perdition,” the Antichrist, and to resist him in every possible way. This formed the core of Russian eschatology, and formalized the status of the Russian people as “God-bearers.”

Forgotten in the era of the Western reforms of Peter and his followers, the idea of Moscow as the Third Rome revived again in the 19th century, under the influence of the Slavophiles, and then became a central theme in the Russian Orthodox Church beyond the Frontier.

After the schism, eschatology became widespread among the Old Believers and sectarians. The Old Believers generally believed that the fall of the Third Rome had already irreversibly taken place, while the sectarians (Khlysty, Skoptsy), on the contrary, believed in the imminent coming of the “Russian Christ.”

The secular version of sectarian “optimistic” eschatology was taken up by the Bolsheviks, hiding it under the Marxist version of Hegel’s end of history. In the last period of the USSR, the eschatological belief in communism faded, and the regime and the country collapsed.

The theme of Russian eschatology became relevant again in Russia after the beginning of the Special Military Operation, when the confrontation (with the Masonic-liberal and materialistic-atheistic) civilization of the West became extremely acute. Logically, as Russia establishes itself as a separate civilization, the role of eschatology and the central importance of the function of the Katechon will only increase.

The Islamic World

Sunnism: The Sunni Mahdi

In Sunnism, the end of the world is not described in detail, and the visions of the coming leader of the Islamic community, the Mahdi, pale before the description of the Last Judgment that God (Allah) will administer at the end of time. Nevertheless, this figure is there and is described in some detail in the hadiths. It is about the emergence of a military and political leader of the Islamic world who will restore justice, order and piety, which has fallen into decay by the end of time.

The authoritative Sufi, Ibn Arabi, specifies that the Mahdi will be assisted in ruling by “viziers,” forming the basis of the eschatological government; and according to him, all the viziers of this “metaphysical government,” as assistants and projections of the unified pole (kutbah) will come from non-Arabic Islamic communities.

The Mahdi will defeat al-Dajjal (the Liar) and establish Islamic rule. A peculiar version of Islamic eschatology is also professed by supporters of the Islamic State (banned in Russia). Various figures in Islam claimed for the role of Mahdi. Most recently, the head of the Turkish PMC SADAT Adnan Tanriverdi proclaimed Erdogan as the Mahdi.

Iran: The Twelfth Imam

In Shi’ism, the Mahdi theme is much more fully developed, and eschatology underlies the very political-religious teachings of the Shi’ites. Shi’ites consider only the followers of Ali, the Imams, to be the legitimate rulers of the Islamic community. They believe that the last, Twelth, Imam did not die, but withdrew into concealment. He will appear to people again at the end of time. This will be the beginning of the rise of the Shia world.

Then there will be the appearance of Christ, who together with the Mahdi will fight with al-Dajjal and defeat him, establishing for a short period—just before the end of the world—a just, spiritual order.

Such views are espoused by the majority of Shiites, and in Iran it is the official ideology, largely determining the entire political strategy of this country.

Shiite eschatology in many respects continues the Iranian pre-Islamic tradition of Zoroastrianism, which had a developed theory of the change of cycles and their culmination in the Great Restoration (frashokart). There the image of the coming King-Savior, Saoshyant, who is destined to be born magically from a pure Virgin and defeat the army of the dark beginning (Ahriman) in the last battle, also plays an important role.

Probably, it was the ancient Iranian doctrine about the struggle of light (Ormuzd) and dark (Ahriman) began through history, as a key to its meaning and about the final victory of the warriors of light, became the basis for the eschatological part of monotheistic teachings. But in any case, the influence of Zoroastrianism on Shi’ism is obvious, and this is what gives Iranian eschatology such a sharp and vivid political expression.

Southeast Asia

India: Kalki

In Hinduism, the end of the world has little significance, although a number of sacred texts associated with the Kalachakra cycle tell of kings of the mystical land of Shambhala, where the conditions of the golden age reign. At the ultimate moment in history, one of these kings, Kalki, believed to be the tenth avatar of Vishnu, will appear in the human world and fight the demon Kali. Kalki’s victory will end the dark age and signify a new beginning (satya-yuga).

Kali-yuga (the age of darkness) is described as an era of the decline of mores, traditional values and the spiritual foundations of Indian civilization. Although Indian tradition is quite detached from history and its cycles, believing that spiritual realization can be achieved under any conditions, eschatological motifs are quite present in culture and politics.

In contemporary India, the popular conservative politician and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is recognized by some traditionalist circles as a divine avatar, either of Kalki himself or his harbinger.

Buddhism: The Buddha of Times to Come

Eschatological motifs are also developed in the Buddhist tradition. The end of time is seen in it as the coming of the future buddha, Maitreya. His mission is to renew the spiritual life of the sangha, the Buddhist community, and to turn humanity to the salvific path of awakening.

On Buddhism were based some political systems of the countries of southeast Asia—Japan, combined with the autochthonous cult of Shinto, centered on the figure of the divine Emperor, and a number of states of Indo-China. In some cases, the appeal to the figure of the coming Buddha Maitreya became the basis for political movements and popular uprisings.

Sometimes eschatological Buddhism found support in communist ideology, giving rise to syncretic forms—Cambodia, Vietnam, etc.

China: The Heavenly Mandate

Eschatology is virtually absent in Confucianism, which is the dominant political-ethical mainstream of Chinese tradition. But at the same time, it is developed in some detail in the religion of the Chinese Taoists and in Taoist-Buddhist syncretistic currents. According to Taoist ideas about cycles, the history of the world is reflected in the change of ruling dynasties in China. This change is the result of the loss of what the Taoists call the “heavenly mandate,” which every legitimate ruler of China is obliged to obtain and retain. When this mandate runs out, China is in turmoil, with civil war and unrest. The situation is saved only by obtaining a new heavenly mandate and enthronement of a new dynasty.

The Chinese Middle Empire is perceived by the Chinese themselves as an image of cosmic hierarchy, as the Universe. In the Empire, culture and nature merge to the point of indistinguishability. Therefore, dynastic cycles are cosmic cycles by which epochs are measured.

The Chinese tradition does not know the absolute end of the world, but believes that any deviation of the world order, in any direction, requires symmetrical restoration. This theory implicitly contributed to the Chinese revolution and retains its significance to the present day.

In fact, the figure of the current chairman of the CPC Central Committee, Xi Jinping, is seen as a new appearance of a legitimate Emperor who has received a heavenly mandate.

Africa

Garvey: Black Freemasonry

One of the founders of the movement to restore dignity to African peoples was Jamaican-born Freemason, Marcus Garvey, who applied Masonic progressivism to blacks and called for rebellion against whites.

Garvey took a series of actions to bring American blacks back to the African continent, continuing a process that began in 1820 with the creation of an artificial state on the west coast of Africa, Liberia. Liberia’s government copied the U.S. and so too was composed predominantly of Freemasons.

Garvey interpreted the struggle for the rights of blacks not just as a means to gain equality, but actively promoted the theory of the chosenness of Africans as a special people, which after centuries of slavery was called to establish its dominance—at least in the space of the African continent, but also to claim and assert the rights to power in the U.S. and other colonial countries. And in the center of this world movement should stand the Masonic lodges, where only black people are allowed.

The extreme representatives of this current were the organizations Black Power, Black Panthers and later BLM.

Great Ethiopia

In Africa, among the melanodermatic (black) population, their own original versions of eschatology have developed. All of them (as in Garvey’s eschatology) regard African peoples as endowed with a special historical mission (blacks = New Israel) and foretell the rebirth of themselves and the African continent as a whole. The general scheme of African eschatology considers the era of colonization and slavery as a great spiritual trial for the black race, to be followed by a period of reward, a new golden age.

In one version of this eschatology, the core of African identity is Ethiopia. Its population (Kushites and Semites with dark skin) is seen as the paradigm of African civilization, as Ethiopia is the only African political entity in Africa that has not been colonized, either by European powers or by Muslims.

In this version, all African peoples are considered to be related to Ethiopians, and the Ethiopian monarch, the Negus, is perceived as a prototype of the ruler of the great African Empire. This line was the basis of Rastafarianism, which became popular among the blacks of Jamaica and further spread among the black population of Africa and America.

This version is prevalent among Christian and Christianized peoples. Christian eschatology of Ethiopians (Monophysites) acquires original features connected with the special mission of Ethiopia, which is considered to be the chosen country and the chosen people (hence the legend that the ancestor of Ethiopians was Melchizedek, the King of Peace). In Rastafarianism, this Ethiopian eschatology acquires additional—sometimes quite grotesque—features.

Black Islam

Another version of African eschatology is the Nation of Islam, which emerged in the United States. This doctrine claims that both Moses and Muhammad were black, and that God incarnates in black politico-religious leaders from cycle to cycle. The founder of this current, Wali Fard Muhammad, considered himself to be such an incarnation (this is consonant with the Russian Khlysty). After the death of Wali Fard Mohammed believers expect his return on a spaceship.

Parallel to this is the proclamation of the need for black struggle in the United States and around the world—and not just for their rights, but for recognition of their spiritual and racial leadership in civilization.

Under the contemporary leader of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan, this current has achieved great influence in the United States and has had a significant impact on the ideological formation of black Muslims in Africa.

Black Egypt

Another version of African political eschatology is the KMT current (from the ancient Egyptian name of Egypt itself), which develops the ideas of the African philosopher Sheikh Anta Diop. He and his followers developed the theory that ancient Egypt was a state of black people, which is evident from its name “KMT,” in the Egyptian language meaning “Black Land” or “Land of Blacks.” Anta Diop believed that all African religious systems are echoes of Egyptian religion, which must be restored in its entirety.

His follower Kemi Seba developed the thesis of African monotheism, which is the basis of a religio-political system where power should be vested in a Metaphysical Government expressing the will of God (like the Mahdi viziers in Ibn Arabi’s version). Life should be based on the principle of closed black communities—kilombo.

At the same time, Africans should return to the traditions of their peoples, fully control the African continent, restore as dark a skin color as possible (through melano-oriented marriages) and carry out a spiritual revolution in the world.

The single, sacred Pan-African language should be the restored ancient Egyptian language (medu neter), and Swahili should be used for practical needs. According to the proponents of KMT theory, black people are the bearers of sacredness, Tradition and the people of the golden age. White civilization, on the other hand, represents perversion, pathology, and anti-civilization, where matter, money, and capital stand above spirit.

The main enemy of Africans and blacks around the world is whites, who are considered the bearers of modernization, colonialism, materialism and spiritual degeneration. Victory over whites is the guarantee of blacks’ fulfillment of their world mission and the crowning achievement of the decolonization process.

Latin America

Ethno-eschatology: Indigenism

In Latin American countries, a number of aboriginal Amerindian peoples see the logical end of colonization as the restoration of ethnic societies (indigenism). These tendencies are developed to varying degrees depending on the country.

Many consider the rebellion of Tupac Amaru II, a descendant of the last Inca ruler, who led an Indian revolt against the Spanish presence in Peru in 1780, as the symbolic beginning of Indian resistance to colonizers.

In Bolivia in 2006, Evo Morales, the first-ever representative of the Aymara Indian people, was elected president. Increasingly, voices are being heard—primarily in Peru and Bolivia—in favor of declaring the ancient Indian cult of the earth goddess Pachamama an official religion.

As a rule, the ethnic eschatology of Latin American Indians is combined with leftist socialist or anarchist currents to create syncretic teachings.

Brazilian Sebastianism

A particular version of eschatology, linked to Portuguese ideas about the Fifth Empire, developed in Brazil. After the capital of the Portuguese Empire was moved to Brazil because of a republican coup d’état in Portugal, the doctrine arose that this transfer of the capital was not accidental and that Brazil itself had a special political-religious mission. If European Portugal lost the doctrine of King Sebastian and followed the path of European bourgeois democracy, then Brazil must now assume this mission and become the territory where, in the critical conditions of the historical cycle, the missing but not dead King Sebastian would be found.

Under the banner of such a doctrine the conservative Catholic-eschatological and imperial revolts against the Masonic liberal government—Canudos, Contestado, etc.—took place in Brazil.

Eschatological Map of Civilizations

Thus, in a multipolar world, different eschatologies clash or enter into an alliance with each other.

In the West, the secular model (progressivism and liberalism) clearly prevails, with a significant addition in the form of extreme Protestant dispensationalism. This is the “end of history,” according to Fukuyama. If we take into account the liberal elite of European countries under full American control, we can speak of a special eschatology that unites almost all NATO countries. We should also add the theory of radical individualism, common to liberals, which demands to free people from all forms of collective identity—up to freedom from sex (gender politics) and even from belonging to the human species (transhumanism, AI). Thus, the new elements of Masonic progressive eschatology, along with the “open society,” are the imperatives of gender reassignment, support for LGBTQ principles, posthumanism, and deep ecology (which rejects the centrality of the human being in the world that all traditional religions and philosophical systems have insisted on).

Although Zionism is not a direct continuation of this version of eschatology, in some of its forms—primarily through its alliance with the American neocons—it partly fits into this strategy; and given the influence of Jews on the ruling elites of the West, these proportions may even be reversed.

Russia and its Katechonic function, which combines the eschatology of the Third Rome and the communist horizon as a legacy of the USSR, stands most blatantly in the way of this end of history.

In China, Western Marxism, already substantially reworked in Maoism, increasingly openly displays Confucian culture, and the head of the CCP, as traditional Emperor, is given a heavenly mandate to rule “All that is under Heaven” (tianxia—天下).

Eschatological sentiments are constantly growing in the Islamic world—both in the Sunni zone and especially in Shiism (primarily in Iran), and it is modern Western civilization—the same one that is now fighting Russia—that is almost unanimously presented as al-Dajjal for all Muslims.

In India, Hindutva-inspired sentiments (the doctrine of the independent identity of Hindus as a special and unique civilization) are gradually growing, proclaiming a return to the roots of the Hindu tradition and its values (which do not coincide at all with Western values), and hence outlining the contours of a special eschatology associated with the phenomenon of Kalka and the overcoming of the Kali-yuga.

Pan-Africanism is developing towards the strengthening of radical teachings about the return of Africans to their identity and a new round of anti-colonial struggle against the white world (understood primarily as colonial countries belonging to the civilization of the West). This describes a new vector of black eschatology.

In Latin America, the desire to strengthen its geopolitical sovereignty is based on both leftist (socialist) eschatology and the defense of Catholic identity, which is particularly evident in Brazil, where both leftists and rightists are increasingly distancing themselves from globalism and U.S. policy (hence Brazil’s participation in the BRICS bloc). The ethno-eschatologies of indigenism, though relatively weak, generally add an important additional dimension to the whole eschatological project.

At the same time, the French aristocratic eschatology (and its secular projection in Gaullism), the German version of the end of history in the form of the German Empire, as well as the Buddhist and Shinto line of the special mission of Japan and the Japanese Emperors—(for now, at least) do not play any noticeable role, being completely bought by the dominant progressive globalist elite and the strategies of the Anglo-Saxons.

Thus, we have a world map of eschatology, corresponding to the contours of a multipolar world.

From this we can now draw whatever conclusions we want.


Alexander Dugin is a widely-known and influential Russian philosopher. His most famous work is The Fourth Political Theory (a book banned by major book retailers), in which he proposes a new polity, one that transcends liberal democracy, Marxism and fascism. He has also introduced and developed the idea of Eurasianism, rooted in traditionalism. This article appears through the kind courtesy of Geopolitica.


Featured: Multipolarity I, by Roodslav.