The Hunt for Red November

IN Tom Clancy’s blockbuster submarine thriller, Captain Marko Ramius chooses the anniversary of his beloved wife’s death to steal the Soviet navy’s lethally muffled doomsday machine. Marko is a hard man with a wounded spirit and a poet’s heart. If Vladimir Putin was similarly moved by the romance-cum-duty of remembrance, yesterday’s feast of Sts Cyril and Methodius – Apostles to the Slavs – would have been laden with symbolism for a man poised to let loose Third Rome’s dogs of war. But this isn’t a novel or a movie and there isn’t going to be an all-in brawl with Russia. I’d be surprised if there is even an invasion of Ukraine. The same ‘nudge units’ that sold us the ‘science’ of China’s pandemic ‘measures’ – and a series of deceptions going back to the First Russia Hoax – now want us to think armageddon in Eastern Europe is ‘looming’. Aping an increasingly unhinged United States – a nation recently bounced out of Afghanistan like Barney from Moe’s – khaki tub-thumpers Scott Morrison and Peter Dutton are campaigning on Anthony Albanese’s unwillingness to fight Russia. They scampered away from Mark McGowan.

In an irenic gesture prophetic and brilliant, in 1980 Pope John Paul II named Cyril and Methodius co-patrons of Europe, thus affording the holy brothers – and through them the peoples they evangelised – the same cultural prestige as Saint Benedict of Nursia. Tragically, after the collapse of the USSR ten years later and the retirement of the Wojtyla generation of statesmen – schooled in world war – such virtuosity in the grammar of diplomacy and Ostpolitic was replaced by an altogether different and foolish proselytism. Instead of leaving well enough alone after consolidating its hard-won victory, NATO’s new class of swollen-headed clerks began to encroach upon – when they weren’t re-baptising outright – nations they had absolutely no business alienating from Russia.

The gamesmanship surrounding Ukraine is shot through with two historical ironies and, arguably, one Russian miscalculation. First, the ironies: it was the Soviet Union that inspired and bankrolled Western leftists to erode the familial, educational, cultural and religious ramparts of Europe. There were no relativists in the 1960s and 70s, however, but only Robespierreans waiting for preferment and middle-age. That the heirs of old front groups like the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament are today’s woke-mongering enemies of Russian chauvinism is what makes the deserts so just. Karma aside, the second irony is a rude blusterer becoming successor to those who opposed Brezhnevian perfidy while being prudent enough to leave humiliation out of post-Gorbachev strategy. Donald J. Trump has more in common with George H.W. Bush than Joe Biden does.

It is possible Putin underestimated the resolve of his politically and mentally failing counterpart – meaning his handlers – to make a stand over Ukraine. The White House is desperate to live down the Kabul Debacle and make a now widely detested incumbent look commanding – or even awake. With November’s mid-term elections projected to be a Republican rout, Ukraine is a proxy theatre for an existential panic about MAGA divisions amassed on the DNC’s border. The trick is to claim at some point that a non-invasion was America’s doing, that Putin was ‘stared down’ by the glassy-eyed old man from Scranton. Call it the Omicron Play: the restrictions worked because the sniffles fell back. The small contingent of US gesture troops will help sell the ruse, of course, and the media will sell the story. But the truth is Putin cannot lose. Russia is free to garrison its soldiers wherever it likes and there is nothing anyone can do about it.

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8 Responses to The Hunt for Red November

  1. MatrixTransform says:

    First, the ironies: it was the Soviet Union that inspired and bankrolled Western leftists to erode the familial, educational, cultural and religious ramparts of Europe.

    Yuri Bezmenov is still chuckling

  2. bollux says:

    If Russia invades like our bought and paid for media would like them to do, I might donate my house to the Greens. Both have about the same likelihood.

  3. Morsie says:

    The fix is in and the deal is done

  4. Tel says:

    The trick is to claim at some point that a non-invasion was America’s doing, that Putin was ‘stared down’ by the glassy-eyed old man from Scranton.

    Of course … same as the way driving an electric car prevents both bushfires and floods. Same as the way using a heavy-duty plastic shopping bag saves the planet from the danger of thin plastic shopping bags.

    But the truth is Putin cannot lose.

    Winning position for Putin is no missile tubes in the Ukraine, which might quite likely be launchers for Tomahawks. Once Biden has claimed credit for preventing the invasion that they had no evidence for, but insist is coming any minute now, he will also demand more troops are needed to ensure it never happens again. Lame … but you would be surprised how many people fall for these things.

    If they can’t provoke Putin on day one, they sure as heck will keep escalating until they do … it’s the only strategy Washington can think of. Inevitably they will setup one missile tube and say, “Hey it’s just one and purely defensive ya know?”

    Will Putin blow up the first one? Dunno … but then along comes a second missile tube. Remember how we got, “Two weeks to flatten the curve” and all that BS … now imagine the same thing with real weapons.

  5. C.L. says:

    Interesting points, Tel, re sticking with escalation as an ongoing policy.

    Contra that:

    1. America and Brussels have no stomach for sending in troops to be squished in a war with Russia
    2. Biden won’t be around for long
    3. Even severe sanctions will cause Vlad to turn off the gas taps to Europe
    4. Escalation as policy would be overplaying the hand. NATO is trying to get away with framing Putin for provocation when that is exactly what they did when they started courting Ukraine. It won’t take long for NATO to be seen as the aggressor and for reasonable voices to counsel them to stay out of Russia’s backyard.

    In other words, I think Biden can get a bullshit ‘victory’ by a non-invasion but Putin gets a more long-lasting one by keeping his troops where they are.

  6. C.L. says:

    In fact, that’s probably how this ends: a back-channel understanding that both nations get a PR win and, behind the scenes, NATO agrees to pull its head in.

    That’s how the Cuba situation petered out in 1962.

  7. HGS says:

    Nothing is ever certain.
    I agree, Putin wins every way. Very poor policy by the NATO crowd. So a Pyric victory to NATO supporters, they saved us from a war. Putin gets what he was always after.
    The Great Game for Pre School.

  8. Petros says:

    Biden is in a hurry to get a war going before the midterm elections.

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