Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
RATTANSI: ...It's also seventy-six years to the day that UK Prime Minister Winston Churchill made his made his famous "Iron Curtain" speech to the USA in which he warned against the spread of soviet communism. Now, let's go straight to Washington D.C. to speak to the USA's former-UN ambassador and President Donald Trump's national security advisor, John Bolton, for this very special edition of "Going Underground." Ambassador, thanks so much for comming back on. So Joe Biden ended his "State of the Union" [speech] with the words, "Get him", in the style of previous uh officials against Osama bin Laden, perhaps. He's spending the weeekend at Camp David. If you were still national security , what would you be telling Joe Biden to do?
BOLTON: I'd be saying that until the Russian energy sector has effectively collapsed, Putin has no [dis]incentive to to give up his ongoing offensive in Ukraine, and, honestly, with oil prices what they are, even if Russia has to sell at a discount [?!], it's still making money off this war [incentive], and there's every reason to think he'll continue until he achieves whatever his objectives in Ukraine are. You know, the failure here is not that we're not imposing sanctions on Putin. The failure is, we failed to deter him, and the cost [disincentive] of that failure is now being borne by the Ukrainian people, and it will be borne by Russians and, by the way, it will be borne by Europeans and Americans, too, as the price of oil goes up. So being content with a long, dragged out process is not in our interest.
RATTANSI: So, from your point of view, this war is being financed [sic] in effect by Europeans buying Russian energy resources that supply forty per cent of the market?
BOLTON: Right. I mean, right now as the war is progress, oil and gas are still being transmitted [sic] through pipelines all across Europe, and Russia is being reimbursed [sic] for them despite sanctions that take some Russian banks out of the SWIFT system, two of the three top Russian banks are still receiving payments, because they're energy-related. The United States is still importing oil from Russia, really pretty incredible. In the meantime, the Russian military which has had its problems in Ukraine is grinding down opposition. K[ie][yy]v and Kharkiv and the Ukrainians have defended themselves heroically, but the correlation of forces [!], as we used to say in soviet days, is very against them, and time will not be on their side.
What we're concerned about in Europe is the security and safety of the United States. Since 1945, we believe that a secure Europe is in America's best interest, but, frankly, what goes on in Europe beyond that is really not something that most Americans care about, because they don't really care about these kinds of things in other parts of the world. We would like to be safe and secure, and that means making sure the Europeans don't lapse [!] into yet another [!] world war like the first two hot wars and much of the cold war fought in Europe as well.
RATTANSI: ... the United States has been funding Ukraine for, well, since 2014, since the coup. I mean, you can see that there are two sides being given on this story. One side is, Russia is trying to end the brutal puscht regime from 2014, financed by the United States [IMF] in the heart of Europe, so it can no longer kill people there, 14,000 dead.
BOLTON: Well, that's the hall of mirror's view of what happened in Ukraine in 2914, and, unfortunately, it's the Ukrainian people who are paying for that misperception.
RATTANSI: So what is the price that Biden name checked at the state of the union [speech]. He said, Putin must pay a price. What is that price that maybe Jake Sullivan and Anthony Blinken want to charge Putin?
BOLTON: Well, I don't think they know.... I think what Putin is counting on, and he may be right, is whenever this ends ...he's counting on European memories to be short and for these sanctions to disappear. And based on the history we've seen, I'm not counting on European resolve to keep these sanctions in place.
RATTANSI: Back to what you were saying about sanctions: You do expect sanctions to lapse very swiftly? After a completion of military operations as seen from Moscow and a mission-accomplished statement from Putin in the Kremlin?
BOLTON: Look, my prediction...I don't think, Putin wants all of Ukraine under Russian control. I think he wants the eastern and southern parts of the country. He wants wants contol of the north coast of the Black Sea. I think, if he had his druthers, he'd set up a Vichy France kind of governement in the rest of Ukraine ...
by Cat on Sun Mar 6th, 2022 at 11:50:48 AM EST
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