Austria and Hungary have refused demands to send weapons to Ukraine.
The two countries should have never parted ways from their Austro-Hungarian identity, and the other members of that union should have remained put too. The Czech and Slovak Republics, once members of that monarchy, are now among the most militant supporters of Ukraine. They forget that some of the territories that Russia (then the Soviet Union) received as reparations after the two World Wars used to belong to them.
There used to be talk of a Trans-Danubian Federation. It would include what used to be the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. Royalty removed, individual parts of the new commonwealth would be republican and democratic in character. This union would have withstood Adolf Hitler’s onslaught and, later, Iosiph Stalin’s subjugation, with ease.
History does not believe in “what-ifs.” Central Europe today is what it is. Instead of the Trans-Danubian Federation they have created a rather loose group known as Visegrád Four (V4 for short). It is named after a castle town in Pest County, Hungary, where it was born in 1991.
The alliance used to consist of Czechoslovakia, Poland and Hungary. After Czechoslovakia split into two independent states, the V3 became V4.
The V4 have become quite disjointed: the Poles occasionally fight European Union’s instructions, Hungary defies them quite openly, while the Czechs and Slovaks are too enthusiastic for their own good about orders emanating from Brussels.
In fact, Czech Republic’s President-elect, General Petr Pavel, suggested within days of his election that Ukraine ought to become a NATO member. Whether his words endeared him to Czech citizenry as such remains unknown. They pleased the White House, NATO’s head office and the current Czech government, as militant an anti-Russian collection of illiterates as ever broke bread.
Both Austria and Hungary are EU members. Austria hasn’t joined NATO. She decided not to parrot Sweden and Finland’s decision to rid themselves of neutral status that (on paper, at least) guarantees their countries a certain level of safety and security. Hungary, on the other hand, while a NATO member, demands that the organisation respect its members’ independence. She told the EU the same.
As American economist Martin Armstrong put it recently, the Ukraine conflict formally started as a Russian attack, but, in fact, it is a war between the so-called West and Russia. Viewing it in more detail, it is a war between the U.S.A. and Russia, which the Americans lead by West European proxy on one side, and the Ukrainians on the other.
And, as usually happens, the war is driven by differing economic interests much more than by reasons of differing ideologies.
It has become obvious that should the Ukrainian conflict spread, a nuclear war would become inevitable. Not many will remain to assess whom to blame.
In this age of lightning-speed information, control of news and opinion has become perhaps more important than who has faster missiles and mightier nuclear warheads attached to them.
As Armstrong notices, we’re getting too close to World War III, and the fight for control over information becomes even more important.
Here’s the current state of affairs in the West (not much is known about what’s going on in Russia): anyone who tells anything unkind about Ukraine is suddenly a “Putin Supporter.”
Armstrong wrote that he had dealt with every country surrounding Ukraine including Ukraine. All of their neighbours say the same thing – beware Ukrainians.
To quote Armstrong verbatim: “Ukraine is filled with Nazis and their hatred for Russians knows no limit. NATO troops are already there without a formal declaration of war. If they die in battle, Ukrainians choppy off their heads and hands so they cannot be identified which would expose NATO’s involvement.”
A brief glimpse in the past
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told the world on February 23, 2022 that Ukraine would arm herself with nuclear weapons.
Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke to the Russian people that night and launched the invasion the very next day.
This whole tragedy was preceded by two agreements negotiated and signed in the Belarus capital, Minsk, in 2014 and 2015. They were supposed to prepare conditions for the Russian-speaking regions of Ukraine (Donetsk and Lugansk) to vote on their own autonomy (or independence). Then-German Chancellor Angela Merkel would now admit that these agreements were a sham only to buy time for Ukraine to build an army to start World War III.
Meanwhile, Ukraine had lost about 50 per cent of her army. Supporters of Ukraine’s side began claiming this was disinformation, Russian propaganda. The head of the EU repeated this classified Ukrainian information, to Zelensky’s shock. Ursula von der Leyen would be forced by Zelensky’s office to remove her statement from the official record.
Speaking of propaganda, that same Zelensky told U.S. Congress that his propaganda machine defeated Russia and had won the minds of the West.
The cat was out of the bag: this is really a war to destroy Russia.
NATO countries now compete among themselves who would waste more on weapons supplies for Ukraine. Interestingly, the $40 billion the U.S. pledged recently equals about two-thirds of Russia’s official amount of $69 billion budgeted for the military.
Yes, it is not necessary to believe such figures completely, especially if and when they come from Russia, but even so, the flow of Western weapons into Ukraine remains staggering. Yes, staggering, indeed, but with one proviso: only about 30 per cent of them reach the battlefield. Of that, at least three quarters are destroyed by the Russians before joining action. Of the 70 per cent, at least two-thirds disappear before even making Ukraine, sold to destinations unknown (not officially, that is), while the rest falls victim to Russia’s firepower while waiting to be unloaded.
Yet, the weapons merchants get paid by the governments that had made the solemn promises on behalf of their taxpayers, and, when the merchandise is resold, they get paid again.
On January 17, 1961, as he was about to leave the White House after his two terms as U.S. President, John Dwight “Ike” Eisenhower spoke of the mortal dangers that he described as “military-industrial complex.”
The great old warrior knew.