One leader supports peace
and stability. The other thrives on violence and wages imperial wars.
One believes nation-state sovereignty is inviolable. The other endorses
the divine right of intervention.
One affirms UN Charter and other rule of law principles. The other discards
them as quaint, old fashioned, and obstacles to achieving global dominance.
Expect these doctrines to clash.
Under Putin, Russia is back proud and reassertive. He's not about to
roll over for America, Eurasian issues especially concern him. He wants
Moscow's influenced increased, national sovereignty respected, and rule
of law principles observed.
The 1648 Treaty of Westphalia established the principle of state sovereignty.
It considered it immune from foreign interference or intervention.
During the 18th and 19th centuries, philosophers like Immanuel Kant
said states, as well as individuals, should be subject to international
law. Force by one nation against another should be prohibited.
His "Preliminary Articles" provided ways to prevent war. They included:
(1) Prohibiting secret peace treaties that tacitly include the possibility
of future war.
(2) Abolishing standing armies.
(3) Prohibiting national debts from provoking external conflicts.
(4) Affirming that no state shall forcefully confront others.
Three other articles included ways to establish peace:
(1) Every state constitution should be republican.
(2) The law of nations shall be founded on a federation of free states.
(3) The law of world citizenship shall respect "Universal Hospitality"
Kant defined "Universal Hospitality" to mean unrestricted global free
Post-WW I, the League of Nations failed to prevent war. So did Kellogg-Briand.
Signed by America, Germany France, Britain, Italy, Japan, and nine other
nations in August 1928, it promised wars would no longer resolve "disputes
or conflicts of whatever nature or of whatever origin they may be, which
may arise among them."
Parties violating this mandate "should be denied the benefits furnished
by this treaty."
The 1950 Nuremberg Principles defined crimes against peace to include:
"(i) Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression
or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances;
(ii) Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment
of any of the acts mentioned under (i)."
Signed in June 1945, the UN Charter failed "to save succeeding generations
from the scourge of war...."
How could it when belligerents like America put their rights above international
laws, as well as their own constitutional and statute ones.
Wars thus rage without end. Washington endorses permanent ones. Aggression
is considered America's divine right. Inviolable international laws
are spurned. New World Order considerations are prioritized.
Wars of aggression are called liberating ones. Humanitarian intervention
is pretext for waging them. Peace is illusory because it's spurned.
Putin and Obama clash on these fundamental principles.
On February 27, 2012, Moskovskiye Novosti (The Moscow News) published
the text of Putin's foreign policy comments on "Russia and the changing
Moscow faces "key foreign challenges...." Decisions made affect "our
economy, our culture, and our budgetary and investment planning."
Given America's belligerence, they also impact Russia's survival.
Moscow pursues "an independent foreign policy." It will continue doing
so. Global security depends on cooperation, not confrontation. Washington
stresses other priorities.
Putin affirmed the "inalienable right to security for all states, the
inadmissability of the excessive use of force, and the unconditional
observance of the basic principles of international law."
Failure to abide by these principles assures destabilized international
Washington and NATO conduct "contradict the logic of modern development...."
Expansion assures confrontation. Global security and stability are undermined.
"Regrettably," America and other Western nations remain dismissive of
Russia's concerns. Aggressive wars masquerade as liberating ones. They
undermine state sovereignty. Doing so creates "a moral and legal void..."
The Security Council and other UN bodies long ago breached their mandates.
Nations usurp their obligations with impunity. Force is lawlessly used
against sovereign states. America and NATO consistently undermine global
States are victimized by "humanitarian" intervention and "missile-and-bomb
Washington and key NATO partners "developed a peculiar interpretation
of security that is different from ours."
America is "obsessed" with using force to "becom(e) absolutely invulnerable."
The more it tries, the greater the destabilizing consequences.
Absolute invulnerability for one nation assures none "for all others"
outside its aggressive alliance. Middle East and other uprisings replaced
one "dominant force with another even more aggressive." It's also hostile
to popular needs.
Destroying nations to save them is cover for global dominance. Russia
stands fundamentally opposed. "No one should be allowed to employ the
Libyan scenario in Syria."
Washington keeps advancing the ball for it. Conflict resolution is replaced
by warmongering interventionism. Putin's doctrine endorses cooperation,
not confrontation. Given a chance, diplomacy works. Protecting civilians
requires ending violence, not escalating it.
People yearn for democracy and deserve it. America wants unchallenged
dominance and dictatorship. On vital geopolitical issues, Russia and
America remain fundamentally at odds.
"....US attempts to engage in 'political engineering' " undermine relations.
Washington's missile shield targets Russia aggressively. It "upsets
the military-political balance established over decades."
"Russia intends to continue promoting its security and protecting its
national interest by actively and constructively engaging in global
politics and in efforts to solve global and regional problems."
"We are ready for mutually beneficial cooperation and open dialogue
with all our foreign partners. We aim to understand and take into account
the interests of our partners, and we ask that our own interests be
In April 1999, during NATO's war on Yugoslavia, Tony Blair addressed
the Chicago Economic Club. He presented principles of his "doctrine
of the international community." It became known as the Blair Doctrine.
He couched his ideas in misleading newspeak. He advocated "just war."
He endorsed humanitarian interventions. He proposed five questions needing
answers to decide:
(1) Are intervening powers sure?
(2) Are diplomatic options exhausted?
(3) Are military operations feasible and prudent?
(4) Are intervening powers committed for the long term?
(5) Are national interests of targeted states involved?
If yes to all five, intervention is justified, he claimed. Now it called
"responsibility to protect (R2P). It's as spurious as illegally attacking
Yugoslavia in the 1990s. It culminated with 78 days of bombing in 1999.
Affected people in targeted areas still haven't recovered. Rule of law
principles were blown to peaces. The scenario repeats in all NATO wars.
Invoked humanitarian considerations now justify NATO interventions.
Bush governed by them. So does Obama. Romney will as well if elected.
Putin stands fundamentally opposed. So do China and other key Russian
partners. Loggerhead disagreements promise greater confrontations ahead.
Humanity depends on which side wins. At issue is preventing global war
Allied with leaders intolerant of imperial dominance, ordinary people
have a chance. Sustained resistance is the only chance to live free
in peace. They're worth laying everything on the line for.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized
Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge
discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News
Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time
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