Since the March 2018 attack in the English cathedral city of Salisbury – in which a particular nerve gas was used in an attempt to kill a former Russian military officer who was a British spy – is just a recent part of the ongoing propaganda and economic war waged by many Western governments against Russia, it is interesting to place that attack, and this “new Cold War” – with its punitive economic and financial sanctions against Russia and Russians – into an Aeonic perspective. Which perspective implies a dispassionate approach: of using reason, of being undistracted by personal emotions and by propaganda, and thence appreciating the forces behind, and thus the raison d’être for, this new Cold War.
In terms of reason, the reaction of the British Tory government to the attack – “highly likely Moscow/Putin was behind it,” with “punitive measures” against Russia demanded – has been predicable in its posturing, propaganda, and accusations, with few if any mainstream political commentators, and government officials briefed by the Intelligence services, publicly mentioning two obvious and important facts.
First, that the nerve gas used – Novichok – was produced in Soviet era Russia and given the chaos that resulted from, and continued for some time after, the demise of the Soviet Union it is possible that small quantities of it might have been obtained by “rogue operators” belonging to or affiliated with either organized Russian crime syndicates and/or corrupt Russian oligarchs. Second, that details of the activities of the former British spy over the past five and more years – for instance his possible association with organized Russian crime, or with exiled oligarchs, or even with various Intelligence services – are either not known, or if known to the British Intelligence services, have not been made public by them or by any member of the British government briefed by the British Intelligence services.
Such a scenario – of dubious “rogue” dealings and a subsequent and new betrayal – is far more likely than that Moscow and/or Putin were behind that attack given the length of time since his betrayal of his motherland and the fact that the authorities had ample opportunities to “disappear him” or for him to have an “accident” or die of “natural causes” while he was incarcerated for years in a Russian prison.
In terms of the new Cold War, the speculation that the attack was engineered by Moscow and/or by Putin provides the governments of the West with another propaganda opportunity, as did such recent speculations as the following: (a) that Russia interfered in the 2016 US Presidential election, and (b) the products of the Russian internet security firm Kaspersky contain “spyware” and should not be used, and (c) that Russia conducted a concerted hacking operation targeting the US energy grid, aviation systems, and other infrastructure, and (d) that Russia – given its annexation of Crimea – poses a direct military threat to the West with it thus being necessary for the West to impose punitive sanctions and deploy NATO troops and military resources in Eastern Europe.
That there is no evidential burden in support of such speculations, such accusations, is seldom mentioned, for to point this out would detract from the propaganda value of such accusations, with Russia consistently portrayed by Western governments and the Media as nefarious, aggressive, and a “threat” to “peace”, with no mainstream political commentators publicly mentioning the utter hypocrisy of modern Western governments.
A hypocrisy evident in what has become known as “the Ukraine crises” with Russian “aggression and interference” stridently condemned and Russia subject to punitive sanctions. Yet the nations of the modern West – and the US in particular – are free to invade countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq; free to interfere in countries such as Yemen; free to undertake extra-judicial killings by drones in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, and elsewhere; free to station troops in Niger, Djibouti, Japan, South Korea, and elsewhere. Did the United Nations impose sanctions on the US and Britain for their invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq and for their continuing interference in Yemen through providing arms and assistance to the repressive, misogynist, undemocratic regime in Saudi Arabia? No.
Which hypocrisy and propaganda bring us to an ‘Aeonic’ appreciation of what is behind the new Cold War.
The appreciation begins with another example of the hypocrisy of modern Western governments: Iran. At the behest of the US government, punitive sanctions have been imposed on Iran since 1979 with the aim of undermining and removing the Islamic government of that country. That is, the US government and others were intent on interfering in the internal affairs of a foreign country in order to effect “regime change”. One hypocritical excuse used for such interference was what the US government declared was “the deteriorating human rights situation in Iran.” Hypocritical, and propagandistic, because the US government (and other Western government) has not imposed and will not impose punitive sanctions on countries with a worst “human rights situation” than Iran, such as Egypt, Turkey, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, and of course the Zionist entity that occupies the West Bank and Gaza and other Palestinian lands; which entity encourages illicit settlements in the West Bank and the Golan heights, and can launch and has launched punitive military raids in the West Bank, Gaza, and other territories including, most recently, Sinai.
Since 2006, again at the behest of the US government, the sanctions – supported and enforced by all Western governments – became more severe because the US government demanded that Iran cease what it termed “prohibited and illicit nuclear activities.” In other words, the US government gets to decide who can and who cannot have or develop nuclear power and nuclear weapons. In practice this means that modern Western countries can have nuclear weapons as can other countries that they “approve of”, such as Pakistan, India, the Zionist entity that occupies Palestine, China, Britain, and France.
Experienced analysts working for the Security services of Western nations such as Britain and the US have long understood why both Iran and Russia have been and are the target of punitive sanctions and subject to concerted and hypocritical propaganda campaigns. In the case of Iran, it is because the US government and its allies – with their uncritical support of and arms trade with the Zionist entity that occupies Palestine – are opposed to Iranian influence in the Middle East and especially opposed to Iran acquiring any type of weapon, conventional or nuclear, that might threaten the Zionist entity. In the case of Russia, as with Iran, they want internal change – a change of government, “regime change” – so that (a) they can remove Russian influence from the Middle East (such as in Syria) and elsewhere, replacing it with their own influence, (b) can have a free hand in Eastern Europe, and (c) reduce or remove the risk of Russia – with its nuclear and chemical arsenals – being a threat to US hegemony. Which is also why the US government and its allies have “demonized” and are “demonising” North Korea and imposing punitive sanctions on that country, since a nuclear armed North Korea poses a threat to US hegemony in places such as South Korea, Japan, and the Philippines.
It is no coincidence therefore that the current British and US governments are using the recent attack in England on a former Russian military officer as part of their on-going “demonizing Russia” and “demonizing Putin” propaganda campaigns.
March 2018 ev