Sat Jul 16th, 2022 at 10:31:29 PM EST
A long read ...
Last Ditch Effort to Prevent War in Europe
Amazing leak: France 2 made a documentary from the transcripts of conversations between @EmmanuelMacron and Putin before the invasion. Macron assured his counterpart that Biden was ready to "clarify the issue of Ukraine and NATO" in a meeting with Putin.
Perception from Washington DC ...
Another Way to Help Ukraine: Prepare Now for a Peace Process | USIP |
If Ukraine opts for negotiations, Europe and the United States need to be ready to join.
Three months of Russia's savagery against Ukraine have left little space in current policy discussions for considering a peace process. President Biden vows to strengthen Ukraine before any negotiations by providing more arms and funds, and tougher sanctions on Russia. Alongside that vital support for Ukraine's defense, it is important to develop other ways to help Ukraine end bloodshed and protect its future. One track of policy should be preparation now for negotiations if that opportunity emerges. Crucial elements for a viable peace process already are visible: direct U.S. and European Union participation in specific talks, and a peacekeeping mission to prevent Russia's consolidation of control over contested Ukrainian territory.
Negotiations: Under What Conditions?
Western governments are unified [under profession by Joe Biden] in declaring that any negotiation will be done by the Ukrainians based on their own needs and on their own timetable.
Beyond that principle, the world has heard little public discussion of peacemaking ideas since March, when Russian-Ukrainian negotiations in Turkey ended without result. Peace proposals outlined by Poland and Italy have not won broad support even within the European Union.
In early May, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russia would need to pull its troops back "behind the lines it held before February 24," before any negotiations can happen. As combat has shifted toward a war of attrition that could offer significant advantages to Russia's larger forces, U.S. and European politicians and commentators are divided over when it could make sense for Ukraine to consider peace talks.
Military War Games: Simulations
The Coming Storm: Insights from Ukraine about Escalation in Modern War | CSIS - May 26, 2022 |
Based on three crisis simulations held in late March 2022 with think tank fellows, military planners, and congressional staffers, The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will likely struggle to address escalation vectors almost certain to push the current war in Ukraine beyond the country's borders. This paper captures key insights from across these simulations based on two triggering events: (1) a Russian surgical strike on a NATO logistics hub used to provide weapons to Ukraine in southeast Poland, and (2) Russian use of chemical weapons along the Polish border while simultaneously mobilizing to threaten the Baltics.
As the conflict crossed a key threshold and risked becoming a regional war, most participants found a natural pull to escalate in each scenario despite limited expectations of achieving a position of competitive advantage. Analyzing how individuals and teams approached decisionmaking provides insights on rethinking escalation models in the twenty-first century and taking advantage of new concepts and capabilities to better support signaling during a crisis.
Inside the room where Ukraine orders arms from the West | BBC News |
Perception from European Capitals ...
Lunacy from VDL in Brussels ...
Era of Western dominance 'coming to an end', says Tony Blair
Blair has issued a rallying call to Western nations to come together to develop a coherent strategy to counter the rise of China as "the world's second superpower".
Delivering the annual Ditchley lecture the former prime minister called for a policy towards Beijing of "strength plus engagement" as he warned the era of Western political and economic dominance was coming to an end.
"How did Britain ever reach a point where Nigel Farage and Jeremy Corbyn came for a short but consequential time to shape our politics? The craziness in our own politics has to stop."
'Sir' Tony has experience in call to arms to invade, bomb, and occupy Iraq ... British key war criminal.
The European Union is an economic, regulatory and (partly) monetary union. The governing EU Commission has outsourced decision of war or peace to the man in the White House based on military calculations, intelligence and strategy from the CIA and Pentagon. Packaged, sealed and delivered to Brussels. The narrative is singular enforced by "unity" and under threat of "you are either with us, or the enemy." A false dictum eagerly accepted by weak EU officials.
Russophobe Josep Borrell is a prime example ...
The birth of geopolitical Europe: In conversation with Josep Borrell
The European Union reacted swiftly and robustly in support of the Ukrainian government. It adopted the most severe sanctions ever and keeps widening their scope and reach, as the war continues. The Union is making extensive financial and humanitarian support available to Ukraine and contributing to the financing of military equipment provided by member states.
EU countries have welcomed close to five million refugees so far and will keep their borders open to all those fleeing the conflict. We are increasing our resilience and shedding dependencies on energy at a much faster pace than anyone could have envisioned before. The EU has strengthened itself as an international player and one can even speak of the birth of the Geopolitical Union.
Just 18 months ago a completely different narrative about Europe ...
Why European strategic autonomy matters
The concept is not new. In fact, strategic autonomy is part of the agreed language of the EU since quite a long time ago. It was born in the field of defence industry and, for a long time, it was reduced to issues of defence and security. And that is part of the problem.
For quite a while, the debate was limited to a clash between those for whom strategic autonomy was a means of regaining political space vis-à-vis the United States, and others, most of the European states, for whom it had to be avoided precisely for fear of accelerating American disengagement.
Strategic autonomy and the transatlantic link
When talking about threats, a major issue concerns the relationship of the Union with NATO and especially with the United States. It is a quite sensitive one. However, positions are not as far apart as we may think. I believe the time has passed when the need for a common foreign policy and security was denied, or not taken seriously.
At the same time, no one disputes the vital character of the transatlantic relationship and no one advocates the development of a fully autonomous European force outside NATO, which remains the only viable framework to ensure the territorial defence of Europe.
Peace versus Justice: The coming European split over the war in Ukraine
These results place Europeans into two opposing groups: a Peace camp and a Justice camp. Supporters of the Peace camp want peace now even at the cost of Ukrainian concessions to Russia. The Justice camp believes that only Russia's clear defeat can bring peace. This split runs through many countries - and between them. As the conflict in Ukraine turns into a long war of attrition, it risks becoming the key dividing line in Europe. And, unless political leaders handle this difference in standpoint carefully, it could spell the end for Europe's remarkable unity.
Zelensky, allies advocate it is your call, true?
Zelenskyy rejects Russian ultimatums as conflict intensifies | Japan Times - March 21, 2022 |
Ukraine said it would not accept ultimatums from Russia after Moscow demanded it stop defending besieged Mariupol, where hundreds of thousands of civilians are suffering through Russian bombardments laying waste to their city.
Mariupol has become a focal point of Russia's assault on Ukraine, but attacks were also reported to have intensified on the country's second city Kharkiv.
The conflict has driven almost a quarter of Ukraine's 44 million people from their homes, and Germany predicted the refugee number could reach as high as 10 million in coming weeks.
Ukraine uses cover of civilians ...
Russia storing weapons in nuclear plant
Russia is using Europe's largest nuclear power plant to store weapons, an official with Kyiv's nuclear agency has said.
The president of the Ukrainian state nuclear agency, Energoatom, said the weapons kept at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, which include "missile systems", were being used to shell surrounding areas.
Perception from Global Majority ...
Ukraine war prevents formal communique at G20 finance talks | Al Jazeera |
At the beginning of the second day of talks, Indonesian central bank governor Perry Warjiyo called on ministers and global finance leaders to concentrate on recovery in a world economy reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Q. Has value of life diminished during the deadly SARS CoV-19 pandemic and its aftermath?
Coronavirus, Climate Change, and the Environment
A Conversation on COVID-19 with Dr. Aaron Bernstein, Director of Harvard Chan C-CHANGE
Can you put a price on COVID-19 options? Experts weigh lives versus economics | Science - March 31, 2020 |
Preliminary results favor strict control measures
The cost of shuttering large parts of the economy is relatively easy for Rebelo and his collaborators, Northwestern University economist Martin Eichenbaum and Mathias Trabandt of the Free University of Berlin, to translate into money, the currency of economics. On the economic side, their model calculates how the disease and government policies would influence how much people work and buy.
But the dollars and cents of a virus are less intuitive. Rebelo uses a modified version of what's known as an SIR model, an acronym for categories of people: susceptible, infected, and recovered. It simulates how a disease moves through a population based on how infectious and lethal it is, and how much contact people have with each other. To put a price on the results, Rebelo takes the number of predicted deaths and calculates an economic estimate of the value of the lost lives. The approach is similar to the price that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency used to gauge the costs and benefits of environmental regulations: $9.5 million per life.
His initial modeling efforts showed that even a yearlong lockdown makes economic sense, to allow time for a vaccine to be developed. The pause would shrink the economy by approximately 22%--a cost of $4.2 trillion. By comparison, the model shows that without containment measures, the economy would contract by about 7% over that year--but as many as 500,000 additional lives would be lost, which translates into a loss of roughly $6.1 trillion.
”Of all the foreign-policy actors... Vindman sounded the grimmest....“tens of thousands of dead and hundreds of thousands of refugees."
Fails to consider COVID impact:
10,000 dead & hundreds of thousands wounded
-- that's just a run-of-the-mill COVID week
We're desensitized — 22 Feb. 2022