Eurasia note #24 - 'Hunting Fascists' Like It's 1945
Ukraine lives under the burden of history; but when do we hold ourselves to account?
Street fighting continues as Ukraine says ready for talks and ceasefire.
Open to “neutral status,” commitment not to join NATO.
Volodymyr Zelenskiy: “We ended up defending our country alone.”
Russia roots out “Nazis” — throws down gauntlet to neoliberal world disorder.
Market reaction still points to the coordinated timing of events.
News, followed by separate analysis. (2,100 words, seven minutes’ read.)
Tbilisi, Feb 25, 2022 (Update Feb 26, 0400 GMT)
Stark, brutal footage of street fighting in the outskirts of Kyiv and other cities including Melitopol appear to confirm Russian troops are targeting specific locations in addition to military installations.
This suggests that they may be undertaking house by house searches for “Nazis”, in probably the biggest such sweep in 70 years.
President Vladimir Putin said on Monday that denazification was one of the objectives of intervention.
The historical resonance would not be lost on his audience. Not since the Soviet entry to Berlin have Nazis been hunted down in such a fashion.
As Russian troops reached the outskirts of the capital, Kyiv, on Friday, penetrating the northwestern Obolon district, intelligence officers were said to have a list of hundreds of wanted individuals.
The Russian military has apparently taken care not to disturb civilian infrastructure. The Internet and communications continue to operate.
Ordinary Ukrainians sheltered in basements, while Russian missiles targeted air bases and military infrastructure in at least 25 cities, as confirmed by Ukraine.
On Saturday, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s press secretary said Ukraine had accepted talks and a ceasefire with Russia. On Friday Ukraine’s president said he was ready to discuss “neutral status,” thereby abandoning any attempt to join NATO.
On Thursday that he had asked 27 European leaders whether they or NATO stood by Ukraine. He received no answer. “We ended up defending our country alone. Who is ready to fight alongside us? I don’t see anyone,” he said on Telegram.
Casualties are unclear. At least 13 border guards died when Russian forces seized Snake Island in the Danube delta. There are multiple attacks on radar and military sites and, now, reports that Ukrainian troops and militia are surrounded in the Donbas.
Late Friday China, acting as go between, conveyed a message from Russia that it was willing to hold talks in Belarus. Paramount leader Xi Jinping said he “respects” the Russian actions in the current situation.
This is not a surgical military strike but nor is it indiscriminate warfare. Russia describes it as a “special operation” that includes Russia's security and law-enforcement services, including the FSB, MVD, and MChS.
All Ukrainians would have a free choice of their destiny “without (anyone) trying to drive them into the clutches of Bandera psychology,” said Russia’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, referring to Stepan Bandera, the wartime leader of the fascist Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists.
Putin claims he is defending Ukrainians as well as Russians from the very fascists that the liberals champion in Ukraine.
There is an implicit challenge to Western neoliberalism and its practice of arming restive minorities in other countries, from Banderites to Mujahedeen. Russia’s response is the elimination of real fascists, not the fake ones on Twitter. If you doubt how real they are, follow the anti-fascist researcher and broadcaster Dave Emory. 
The second challenge or paradox, once the initial outrage subsides, is that while Putin is allied to the globalists, he sees the nation as the embodiment of the people: something the Western elites clearly do not.
See Moneycircus, Feb 24, 2022 — Eurasia note #23 - Russia Intervenes in Ukraine:The first war of The Great Reset dovetails with globalist objectives
The U.S., European Union and NATO ignored Ukraine’s plea for military support and offered sanctions. UEFA stripped St. Petersburg of Champions League Final and the European Broadcasting Union excluded Russia from the Eurovision Song Contest.
Later the EU directly sanctioned Putin and Lavrov. Sanctions now affect two-thirds of Russian banks and on Friday were extended to oil refineries — though most Russian crude is refined abroad in places like Germany, the Netherlands and Poland.
This underlines how sanctions have now reached the point where they cannot be extended further without hurting Europe just as hard. It further suggests that there is a degree of acquiescence in Russia’s action.
This is in line with the Build Back Better agenda. It will sharply reduce the availability of energy, also meeting Green objectives. Even if governments impose price controls it is merely the flip side of rationing. A key casualty will be Germany.
In January the country saw an increase in energy prices of 20.5 per cent, year on year. The price of home heating oil rose 51, natural gas by 32, and electricity by 11 per cent. So far, remarkably, Russian gas continues to flow through pipelines transiting Ukraine.
The crisis is already forcing up inflation as key goods become unobtainable. Aluminium prices reached a record high. Even without sanctions Russia has the ability to influence the price of commodities from palladium and platinum, to uranium, and even the wheat that gives you that glowing feeling each morning.
The U.S. does much less trade with Russia but it will deny technologies including semiconductors, and telecoms, encryption, navigation and avionics equipment.
Longer-term impact includes how will Russia respond, in terms of the currencies in which it trades, and whether the central banks and commodity traders act to make things worse not better.
Whether it was coordinated or Russia chose a moment when the world was distracted, the timing has suited the privately-run central banks very well.
Following the money, stock markets quickly recovered their initial losses, even long bonds rallied and the traditional safe haven currencies saw gains as investors sought out the dollar. This takes Federal Reserve rate hikes “completely off the table,” said prominent market economist Mohamed El-Erian — not just the anticipated 0.5 per cent rise but the eight or nine moves expected this year. It buys time for the EU facing the potential of capital flight, just like Canada.
Russia’s move came as a welcome distraction for Canada’s banks and senate who rolled back the Emergency Act. New Zealand’s police and military also seem to have pushed for a softer approach towards protests.
In Auckland the occupation of Parliament's grounds and surrounding streets entered its third week. While police have been attacked, they resisted any attempt by prime minister Jacinda Ardern to follow Canada’s lead with a state of emergency or military deployment.
Just as the escalation to permanent emergency was failing the “war” in Ukraine kicked off.
Why would Russia time its action now? The media tells us Russia is “the other side.” There is no need to assume coordination. The outcome was predictable.
Bear in mind that Prof John Mearsheimer warned in 2015 that “the West is leading Ukraine down the primrose path and the end result is Ukraine is going to get wrecked.” This is not news. Everybody knew the probable result in advance. 
It seems the neocons got their war in Ukraine but not on their terms.
Writing for the Atlantic Council, its president Frederick Kempe noted that while the West has been defending the old order, Russia and China have created a new one.
China, Kempe said, had “joined Moscow in opposing NATO enlargement and embracing Putin’s vision for a new European security order. Russia returned the favor by opposing the new Australia-U.S.-U.K. security agreement, endorsing its One China Policy, embracing the Russia-India-China cooperation format, and blessing its Arctic role.”
“A trend has emerged towards redistribution of power in the world” – namely toward them and away from the U.S. and its democratic partners and allies. 
The City of London has for more than a century obstructed any attempt by Germany to link up with Russia. The thought of it being on board with China, as well, is too much for the Atlanticists to contemplate.
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