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Unbelievable ... Jaap De Hoop Scheffer

by Oui Sun Jan 7th, 2018 at 09:57:14 PM EST

"The West should respect the red lines of Russia."

Yep, just recently I met the former NATO secretary general while buying a book as Xmas present for a friend. JDHS is a former acquaintance long before he became Dutch foreign minister of the Iraq War fame.

Ever since I have seen the SG become more entangled in the web of right-wing intrigues of an aggressive NATO policy of the West. Just very recently a so-called independent policy group advised the Rutte cabinet on Dutch foreign policy issues. I was saddened by its neoconservative attitude. I was even more surprised to find JDHS as chair for the foreign policy forum, hardly an independent thinker after all those years of supporting military AngloSaxon policy for the West.

Here are a few snippets from his interview ...

'NATO should not have committed to membership of Ukraine and Georgia'

NATO has driven Vladimir Putin into a corner, making him more radical. These are not the words of Russia, but those of NATO's former Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer.

According to Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, the West must respect the Russian red line. The speed of NATO enlargement has contributed to Putin's aggressive stance in the former Soviet Union.

NATO should not have committed to Ukraine and Georgia in 2008, the former NATO executive said. He calls it understandable that Putin has opposed it. "He said to me, after the communiqué came true: mister secretary-general, this will not be. This is not going to happen!"

More below the fold ...

The NATO summit in Bucharest in 2008 was a breaking point in the relationship between Russia and the West. NATO opened the door for Georgia and Ukraine. Both countries were allowed to join, even though no date was mentioned. That was the wish of the American President Bush. The German Chancellor Merkel resisted. But NATO decided to leave the door ajar. That was unspeakable for Russia and Putin also said that afterwards.

The former Secretary General now says that he underestimated the response and that he should have done more to keep the parties on the same level. According to De Hoop Scheffer, the decision led to a radicalization at Putin.

From my diary during the Georgian War in South Ossetia - Russia to Cut Military Ties with NATO .

Norway: Russia to cut all military ties with NATO | Reuters - Aug. 20, 2008 |

OSLO, Norway - Norway's Defense Ministry says Russia has informed it that it plans to cut all military ties with NATO.

Ministry spokeswoman Heidi Langvik-Hansen says the country's embassy received a telephone call from Russia's Defense Ministry, saying Moscow plans "to freeze all military cooperation with NATO and allied countries."

Norway was told in the telephone call a written note about this would be sent out shortly.

Russian officials were not immediately available to confirm the information and officials at NATO headquarters said they have not been informed of any such moves.

NATO foreign ministers suspended formal contacts with Russia as punishment for sending troops into Georgia.

NATO SG Jaap de Hoop Scheffer puts blame on Russia

NATO Visit to Georgia Condemned | Moscow Times - Sept. 18, 2008 |   [cached]

The Foreign Ministry issued an unusually harsh condemnation of NATO chief Jaap de Hoop Scheffer's visit to Georgia, saying it showed a Cold War mentality and would further destabilize the region.

NATO's support for Georgia after last month's war with Russia can only be seen as "encouraging Tbilisi to engage in new reckless ventures," the ministry said in a statement.

De Hoop Scheffer and envoys from all 26 member countries were in Georgia this week. Georgia is eager to join the Western military alliance, a step Russia strongly opposes.

The NATO delegation visited the central Georgian city of Gori, which was occupied by Russian troops during the war.

"Yankees Go Home!" - Sevastopol, Crimea

It's been a stubborn fallacy to place blame on Russia as Georgian troops under leadership of Saakashvili attacked a peacekeeping force in South Ossetia.

Georgian Attack Killed 1,600 S Ossetians

A selection of diaries on this topic ...

Putin's Denunciation of US policy at Munich Conference
NATO Summit of Bucharest - A Declaration of War - Part 2
NATO and Soros Crossed Russia's Red Line in Europe
Bundesdag On NSA Spying :: Seeking Opening Towards Russia

It's been a stubborn fallacy to place blame on Russia as Georgian troops attacked a peacekeeping force in South Ossetia under leadership of Saakashvili.
You should rephrase this. I'm pretty sure that anybody who doesn't know the details will misread this (Saakashvili leading a peacekeeping force?....)
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Jan 8th, 2018 at 04:11:36 PM EST
It's been a stubborn fallacy, to blame Russia for an attack by Georgian troops led Saakashvili on a peacekeeping force in South Ossetia.

Orwell guidance

Georgian troops led by Saakashvili attacked a peacekeeping force in South Ossetia. To blame Russia for that attack is a stubborn fallacy.

I've come to prefer poetical in public speech though, as in my experience, many innerboob readers object to declarative sentences or even a hint of the imperative "voice".
< wipes tears >
"Does that make sense? Let's circle back."

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Mon Jan 8th, 2018 at 05:13:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do Russia's neighbors have the right to independence or not? Just curious.

"There are no innocents. There are, however, different degrees of responsibility." -- Lisbeth Salander
by Don Durito on Mon Jan 8th, 2018 at 05:59:40 PM EST
Great question Don!

Would work great to divide some blue and red regions in the United States ... certainly to satisfaction of its citizens and return a feeling of being represented. The forming of a coalition government with more than two grand parties may be a first step ... overhaul the elitist Electoral College. Giving women a vote plus the African Americans was a great step backward for the AngloSaxon imperialist empire. See suffragettes events at Carnegie's Peace Palace in The Hague. See my diary - Women's Suffrage Archive Film Clip 1915 .

    Rudyard Kipling's famous poem "The White Man's Burden"  was published in 1899, during a high tide of British and American rhetoric about bringing the blessings of "civilization and progress" to barbaric non-Western, non-Christian, non-white peoples. In Kipling's often-quoted phrase, this noble mission required willingness to engage in "savage wars of peace."

    Three savage turn-of-the-century conflicts defined the milieu in which such rhetoric flourished: the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902 in South Africa; the U.S. conquest and occupation of the Philippines initiated in 1899; and the anti-foreign Boxer Uprising in China that provoked intervention by eight foreign nations in 1900.

    The imperialist rhetoric of "civilization" versus "barbarism" that took root during these years was reinforced in both the United States and England by a small flood of political cartoons--commonly executed in full color and with meticulous attention to detail.

    H/T Dutch version here

Apartheid: made in Britain: Richard Dowden explains how Churchill, Rhodes and Smuts caused black South Africans to lose their rights
High tide of British and American rhetoric about bringing the blessings of "civilization and progress"

It's my understanding both South Ossetia and Abkhazia seek independence from Georgia, not Russia.

John McCain's remarks on Georgia were derived from Wikipedia by Frank Schnittger @BooMan on Aug. 14, 2008
McCain's Ties with Lobbyist Scheunemann and Georgia
Hegemon Hold 'Em by Jeff Huber @BooMan on Aug. 25, 2008
Abkhazia and S Ossetia Claim Independence

As far as Spain's Catalan separatist movement ... Europe is enforcing unity. Some may prefer an United States of Europe ... wishful thinking.  :-)

If Catalonia goes independent, these places could be next | CNBC |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Mon Jan 8th, 2018 at 07:14:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Nice deflection. Regardless of whether one necessarily approves of the governments in, say, Ukraine or Georgia, the question still remains if these nations have a right to sort out their own internal affairs without Russian invasion or interference. Seems like a straightforward enough question.

Think of it this way. The US undoubtedly possesses the military strength to annex portions of Mexico - let's pretend there was some discovery of significant oil reserves off the shores of Baja California, and since our current regime is in the mood to drill like madness, such reserves would be tempting to exploit. With a good propaganda effort, the current US regime could even make this annexation appear to be a plausible "popular" move that reflects the "will" of the residents of Baja California. Would that be acceptable? We could game out similar scenarios regarding Canadian territory. Would a US annexation of those territories be acceptable? Would you be willing to write those off as "independence movements" on the part of those annexed?

Where do we draw the line - especially when it comes to the rights of the neighbors of a major regional power or world power with regard to managing their own internal affairs without fear of interference? I don't know if I have much of an answer, but I do think it is a fair question to be asked.

"There are no innocents. There are, however, different degrees of responsibility." -- Lisbeth Salander

by Don Durito on Mon Jan 8th, 2018 at 08:26:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do these nations (Ukraine, Georgia, Syria, Iraq, Honduras, Angola, Haitia, India, &tc.) have a right to sort out their own internal affairs without Russian invasion or interference?

The answer to specific and general causes of such action (intervention, interference, invasion) by foreign states, eg. Russia, UNSC, USA, &tc, is, no. World history is littered with justifications (alliance, "just war", R2P). This should explain why political dissents in one nation-state frequently request and receive material and financial aid from another nation-state in order to prosecute civil wars.

As a practical matter, you need not trust that Russia did not start civil wars in Ukraine and Georgia. Or that constituents in both nations had rejected their governments' bureaucracies and especially torrid corruption of their heads of state before requesting foreign "aid" -- be that billions-EUR-USD IMF debt, peace-keeping patrols, munitions or "technical" training.

The more interesting question is, which states do not expect invasion? It's a short list of OEMs.

Finally, the applicability of the "rights" of a sovereign government is intended by unscrupulous politicians to be a problematic test of their personal legitimacy and constituents' appetites for profiteering adventures elsewhere.  Ideally and regardless of government form, a nation-state constitutes itself in sui generis origin of "rights" granted to or withdrawn from its constituents, citizens. For a nation-state acquires, or incorporates, supreme authorities from no other source but manifest obedience of the people to that authority. When that obedience evaporates, who generated the most advertising to promote civil war or generate donor funding for civil war counts for nothing but future sales.

Isn't it strange that by all accounts, Russia has posted poor returns on its "meddling & interference" by comparison to its peers.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Jan 12th, 2018 at 01:03:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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