Two War Criminals

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

A war criminal confesses “by mistake” (see video). Whoever calls Putin a war criminal and not this man, measures with double standards and does not contribute to peace. Here you can see how mendacious the “values” of the West are.

George W. Bush once told the truth.

Those who on the one hand justified Bush’s senseless wars back then (“God told me to go to war”) or still do so today in retrospect are lying to themselves when they condemn Putin today. For all these wars were and are wars of aggression waged by imperial powers, even if Russia’s security interests around Ukraine had been blatantly and probably deliberately disregarded by the Americans and their vassals.

American democracy and freedom were not defended in Afghanistan and Iraq any more than they were in dozens of other countries where the US military bombed and murdered, just as Germany was not defended at Stalingrad or on the Atlantic coast. Propaganda, then as now, was aimed at misleading its own people while maintaining their patriotic willingness.

According to UN estimates, the US-led war in Iraq cost 151,000 lives, most of them civilians, women and children. American bombs did not distinguish between good and evil during the missile attacks on Baghdad and other Iraqi cities. The war instigated by the USA was justified, among other things, with lies about weapons of mass destruction.

Former US-Defense Secretary Colin Powell (1937-2021) himself later apologized for deliberately misleading the world with his remarks to the UN Security Council on February 5, 2003. In his later years, Powell spoke of “fabricated evidence” designed to make it credible that the United States was waging a justified war against Saddam Hussein.

Now the USA is waging a proxy war in Ukraine to decisively weaken Russia and expand its own sphere of influence in order to impose its own interests on other countries – as is currently happening in Europe.

Biden’s own CIA Director raised Concerns

How the USA risks World Peace

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

Now and then, and away from the corporate media, one can still find references to facts even in the U.S. that are useful for causal research (see below). It should perhaps be added that the USA installed a missile defense system on NATO’s eastern border in 2016 under the Pentagon’s lie that this system would serve to repel Iranian long-range missiles in an emergency. In reality, it served to intimidate and provoke Russia with the possibility that these American missiles could reach cities like St. Petersburg and Moscow in minutes. Just as a side note, the President at the time was Barack Obama.

The above is an excerpt from an article written by Peter Beinhart, February 7, 2022. Beinhart is a Jewish columnist, journalist and political commentator. He lives in New York City. – Note: William Burns is an American diplomat and currently serving as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in the Biden Administration.

Shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the so-called Wolfowitz Doctrine revealed in 1992 the unmistakable intention of the Americans to establish themselves as the sole world power. Quote: “Our goal is to prevent the emergence of a new rival, whether on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere ….”

There are still smart people in Washington who are not comfortable with their own country’s aggressive, imperial policies. Unfortunately, a fossilized President Biden doesn’t listen to them for he himself in his entire political life has pushed the great power aspiration of the USA without consideration for others. Instead of reaching out to a former World War II ally, then former Cold War enemy, the USA, in its insatiable greed for world dominance, set its sights on confrontation – with fatal consequences for millions of people not only in Europe, but the entire world.

The leading world power is playing with the possibility of nuclear war because it wants to control fossil fuels and their commercialization, as it is currently doing successfully in Europe, imposing its will on others for reasons of profit and power, and in complete ignorance of the existential threat to the entire human race posed by the climate catastrophe that is more than just in the offing.

Germany: A Specter wants to take Power

Why many Germans believe their government is a Vassal of the USA

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

A Prince Henry the Thirteenth of Reuss was apparently destined to become the new head of state after a successful coup in Germany. At least, that is the assumption of the German Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office. After a large-scale raid last week in Germany, Italy and Austria with about 3,000 police officers, the prosecutor is currently investigating at least 53 defendants on suspicion of membership and support of a terrorist organization.

In Germany, as early as August 28, 2020 – a mere four months before the storming of the Capitol in Washington – several hundred right-wingers, Reich Citizens and conspiracy theorists attempted to break into the Reichstag building in Berlin. Police forces managed to force the mob back from the stairs to the seat of parliament, while in Berlin about 40,000 people demonstrated against the federal government’s Corona measures. The storming of the Reichstag failed because the demonstrators were nowhere near as fanatical and militant as the mob in Washington later on. A woman had spoken to the people, announcing that U.S. President Donald Trump had just landed in Berlin and would use American soldiers to depose the German government that very day.

This refers to the so-called “Reich Citizens”, a movement not recognizing today’s German Basic Law and thus also denying the legal existence of the German state, arguing that there was no peace treaty after the end of World War II and the country thus continues to exist in its pre-1939 borders. According to current estimates, the Reich Citizen scene comprises around 21,000 people.

The notion that imperial acolytes of modern times, led by aristocratic specters, not only want to turn political conditions in Germany upside down, but in all seriousness pose a threat to the country and also find broad support in the process, would never have occurred to me in the past. But it is a mistake not to investigate the causes and answer the question of why people feel driven to reject the prevalent political direction – all the more so when they are left with no alternative in the field of democracy.

This is no longer a phenomenon in the USA alone. When people are disappointed or even disgusted with their government and this disappointment then turns into bitterness and frustration, they often become receptive to radical solutions – including those that no longer fall within the realm of rational understanding. A policy that serves the interests of citizens little or not at all, and by which more and more people feel abandoned, prepares the ground for dangerous polarizations and divisions across society.

In contrast to such diffuse beliefs, many people fortunately still have a basic realistic approach. In Germany, a not insignificant part of the population seems to be of the opinion that the sanctions against Russia are more or less imposed on their country by the U.S., as is the military support for Ukraine. How else would one understand the German government’s about-face on these issues from one day to the next? The Americans wanted to consolidate and further expand their world domination with a tougher policy characterized by threats of sanctions, including against China. Yet it was the Americans themselves who, out of greed for profit, moved large parts of their domestic production base to other countries in order to save production costs and circumvent socio-political regulations. China is only one of those countries.

While Germany generally has been accused of becoming overly dependent on Russia for energy supplies, U.S. corporations have themselves made American consumption dependent on others in recent decades, destroying tens of thousands of industrial jobs at home by outsourcing much of the production that used to take place in the United States. While the latter did not arise from any compulsion other than sheer greed for profit, the old Federal Republic of Germany and the former East-German GDR, as countries poor in raw materials, had to look for alternatives. The Soviets and later the Russians sold oil and liquid natural gas at much lower prices than Germany’s great friend today, the USA. The supply agreements remained unaffected by any events during the Cold War period for decades and even beyond the collapse of the Soviet Union in late 1991.

The Germans must now witness how their left-liberal government fully submits to the USA and has terminals built on the country’s coasts to receive the dirty fracking liquefied gas from overseas, which had previously been so vehemently rejected. In the future, large corporations in the USA will earn 100 million euros with every ship that arrives, while German consumers, despite subsidies, will not only have to pay the highest liquefied gas and electricity prices in Europe, but will also have to reckon with energy shortages in the event of a harsh winter.

In addition, the Biden administration is pursuing a selfish policy, having introduced a $370 billion inflation-reduction bill that subsidizes U.S. companies primarily active in the environmental sector, giving them a competitive advantage over companies from Europe. The fact that this violates World Trade Organization (WTO) rules does not bother the Biden administration. More and more, even German companies are already being lured to the U.S. with anti-competitive tax promises. The USA is determining the worldwide economic liberalism once initiated by Thatcher and Reagan, which results in deregulation and social cuts above all in poorer third world countries – and increasingly not only there –, which ultimately leads to upheavals in political systems, while investors rake in huge profits on the stock exchanges. These are the veritable consequences of the so-called globalization, which was supposed to provide more justice in the entire world.

Apparently largely unnoticed by the American public, the Biden administration is following an “America First” policy at least as strict and ruthless as Donald Trump’s before it.

Who is still surprised when the reputation of the USA sinks to the lowest level worldwide and even in European countries politically radical tendencies arise, which do not stop even before a country like Germany and let officials sound the alarm when a mad prince of the thirteenth wants to coup himself to the head of the state?

It is the Biden’s and their ilk, including a Wall Street Girl named Clinton, who have failed the people with their misguided policies in the interest of big business, allowing a disastrous phenomenon like Trump to come to power in the first place. Perhaps the U.S. will soon witness a sequel, for those who called the ghosts will have a hard time getting rid of them. I would not be surprised anymore.

Anti-USA Protests in Leipzig, Germany

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

About 1200 people protested against Germany’s Russia policy in Leipzig yesterday, Saturday, under the slogan “Ami go home”. The demonstrators demanded the restoration of relations with Russia, the withdrawal of American troops from Germany and accused the German left-liberal government of being a puppet of the United States.

A poster displayed in Leipzig, Germany on November 26, 2022.

At the same time, a left-wing counterdemonstration took place with roughly the same number of participants.

Police forces had prepared to protect the U.S. Consulate in Leipzig. But this did not materialize, because the demonstration had already come to a standstill beforehand, allegedly due to a sit-in by the counterdemonstrators.

The German media largely portrayed the anti-American demonstration as an event organized by politically radical right-wing forces.

“Only Interests”

Henry Kissinger’s words bear witness to the United States of America

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

Really? What is CNN, a media funded by neoliberal corporations, alluding to (see image below)? To a part of the left-liberal, young voters who come from wealthy families and have enough time to cheer for a president who could be their spooky great-grandfather? Young people who support neoliberalism in ways not fundamentally different from the view of the Republican Party? Or perhaps more likely young Americans who are far more sympathetic to the progressive wing of the Democrats and don’t care if they are called “socialists” for it? The latter would be a real attempt at change in this country that could provide social justice and greater equality to overcome the abysmal rifts in American society.

Informing instead of agitating: good journalism is about objectively reflecting what is happening, not engaging in politics itself to pull public opinion in a particular direction. But the latter is exactly what networks like Fox News and CNN, bought by the ruling moneyed elite, are doing.

But Joe Biden is not the right President for that.

These elections will not change the aggressive nature of this country either. The leading country in the world stands for an ancient, Manchester-like capitalist economic system with a dazed president who calls himself a capitalist because he is afraid to go down in the history books as some kind of socialist pope otherwise. A president who, even more than his predecessor, pursues the policy of “America First” and takes no account of the allies on the other side of the Atlantic, because own interests, world supremacy and greed for profit have absolute priority for the USA. A president who drags America into everything that will sooner or later hurt the country just as it did under Trump.

For the USA, true friends and partnership have no value. After all, partnership means working together at eye level. The sanctions policy against Russia imposed by the U.S. on the Europeans benefits no one more than the Americans, who on top of that are trying to lure European and especially German companies to their country with economically unilateral measures. If anything, U.S. allies serve only as a means to an end for the moment. The German government, in particular, is too stupid to grasp this fact and continues to believe in the USA as its great friend.

As Henry Kissinger, a Republican, said: “America has no eternal friends and no eternal enemies, only interests.”

These words bear witness to the United States of America.

Alluring Southern States: Aldi at the Gates

German Retail Chains Expand in the USA

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

Aldi in Blairsville (North Georgia) has supposedly been in the planning stages since 2019, long before the energy crisis in Europe began. However, German public TV channels recently reported that the German discounter is reducing the opening hours of its stores in its country of origin due to exorbitant increases in energy costs. Looking at America, however, it is extremely striking to see how many German grocery stores are currently being built in the comparatively poor south of the USA, and I would not like to know how many Aldi’s and Lidl’s are closing their doors forever in Germany in return. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any details on this so far.

Aldi in my hometown Wolmirstedt, federal state Saxony-Anhalt, Germany

It is not only the lower energy prices and taxes that make the USA so popular as an industrial location. Above all, the absence of a balanced collective bargaining system and the widespread absence of trade unions, especially in the southern United States, mean that companies find extremely favorable conditions for maximum profits – not least because they are largely free to determine the welfare of their employees at any time.

In the eight years I worked for Walmart, I was told more than once, “Just to be clear – the word ‘union’ does not exist in our store. We handle our problems internally.” – I didn’t take that very seriously at the time, especially since I had classified unions in Germany as extortionists anyway. That may have been true for Germany 30 years ago – but there, and even more so in the U.S. with its neoliberal economic system, I think unions are indispensable today to ensure workers’ rights.

I literally experienced firsthand how important this is. For a double hernia I contracted while working at Walmart, I had to pay part of the medical bills out of pocket, even though I was covered by health insurance – a higher four-digit sum that would have taken me years to pay under my circumstances in the U.S. at the time. Instead, I was able to pay the bill immediately with funds generated not in the U.S. but in my home country.

Those who have the favor of circumstance on their side are fortunate not to have to earn a living from lower- or middle-income sources in an area like North Georgia. The neighborhood occasionally reminds the outside observer of a Third World country, or someone like me of living conditions experienced in the former Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. This is also something I would not have thought possible in my earlier notions about the USA, long before I moved here. I say this not with condescending intent, but because this is my inevitable assessment after almost 12 years.

So far, every worker in Germany has been spared an experience like mine as a Walmart employee, since such treatment would still be classified illegal in Western Europe – but I don’t want to sign off on that statement much longer. Who knows how things will develop in my home country in these uncertain times. Sanctions against other countries come back as a boomerang, that’s nothing new either. The ongoing neoliberal globalization and the urge of the West, led by the USA, to impose its will on others without paying consideration to their security interests makes me worry about the future. In Germany, too, there are more and more people who do not know how to pay their energy or grocery bills despite government assistance. The state cannot always lend a helping hand, especially in view of the dangerous scale of the current energy crisis in Europe, especially in Germany.

In addition, politicians who are no longer recognizable in their statements, make the horror even greater. Those who, like German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, say that all negotiating options (with Russia) have been exhausted and the peace dividend has been used up for Germany, possibly hope for victory in war. Yet weapons and wars do not create peace in the long run; they are rather the basis for open accounts and feuds to flare up again. To be sure, folks who call themselves Christians understand this even better than I do. The history of the 20th century alone knows countless examples, and today’s Americans should be more aware than others from their recent history of the futility of the wars they have waged against other countries in other parts of the world. And as far as Ukraine is concerned, sooner or later there will be negotiations with Russia – with or without Putin.

My home country has joined the prevailing world opinion that Russia embodies evil. We Germans have already heard this many times in our history, and it has led to nothing good. A less perceived influence leading to misperceptions occasionally came from the opposite side. For anyone who kept their eyes open in Germany in the 1990s and did not hold a very uncritical, very pro-American opinion, as I did, could already see the German future through the images from the USA as if through a burning glass. Almost everything that sooner or later spilled over from America to Europe was euphorically adopted and copied there as the latest trend – from lifestyle, music, clothing, fast food, shrill sounds and drugs to the conspiracy theories and Trumpism that began their triumphal march from the USA.

German President Prepares His Country for Rough Times

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

If Germany’s leaders decide to have their president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, give a completely unscheduled speech to the nation today to get people in the mood for “hard times for the years to come,” it’s a sure sign of how far Germany is still slipping into calamity – and beyond the coming winter.

Almost every sentence he said could be refuted – it is a disgrace how the population is made a fool of. Just one example from his speech:

“We are just leaving the era of fossil industrialization …. We are entering an age increasingly without coal, oil and gas.”

Increasingly without?

The facts paint a different picture:

Coal, a fossil fuel: At the instigation of the Green Minister of Economics, Habeck, the Saarland is currently bringing completely outdated, environmentally harmful coal-fired power plants back to the grid.

Liquefied natural gas, a fossil fuel: LNG terminals are under construction in Wilhelmshaven, Brunsbuettel, Stade and Lubmin to land the dirty fracking gas from the USA. Allegedly, the Americans earn 100 million euros with each arriving ship, paid for by the German consumer.

Oil, a fossil fuel: Chancellor Scholz was recently in Saudi Arabia (a begging US-President Biden was there before him) to ask the Saudis for higher oil production. Here, a brutal war of aggression in Yemen and human rights suddenly no longer play a role, unlike regarding Russia. The German double standards are deplorable. The Saudis, however, have so far given Biden and Scholz the middle finger: they have cut production because this allows them to obtain a higher price for oil.

Steinmeier had not even finished his speech when the news came: The inflation rate in Germany has risen to 10.4 percent.

This is not the result of the war in Ukraine, but of the insane sanctions of the West against Russia.

During the Cold War, oil and natural gas flowed steadily from the Soviet Union to the former Federal Republic and the GDR, despite all international crises, wars and ideological antagonisms. In comparison, today it looks as if the West is virtually conjuring up the discord with Russia and does not miss any opportunity to fuel it further, because this corresponds to the American doctrine of weakening Russia.

Any diplomacy to end the war has been rejected – as already proven by the rapprochement of both belligerents in March under Turkish mediation. In the subsequent negotiations in Istanbul, Kiev had agreed to abandon its aspirations to join NATO and settle for neutral status. Then, without any credible, concrete indication of reasons, the Ukrainian negotiators rejected everything at that time. They had been called off from Washington by Mr. Biden and his minions.

At that point, the Americans had long signaled that they would support Ukraine with whatever it needed against Russia. This is how proxy wars are fought.

The USA: A War Winner This Time

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

Russia – apparently incapable of succeeding in the war against Ukraine with ground troops – is now reacting once again with intensive air strikes, under which, as always in wars, mainly the civilian population has to suffer. A handful of corrupt politicians in Kiev who keep all of Europe in check have been massively armed by the USA and its accomplices with the aim of bringing Putin to his knees. President Biden has no intention of negotiating, because his country profits massively from the conflict, not least in the energy sector. Europe basically no longer gets Russian natural gas and has to buy it from elsewhere at much higher prices with catastrophic consequences for the population. Russian oil is also expected to stop flowing to the West soon.

The current world situation plays brilliantly into the cards of American imperialist strategy. With wars, in which American armaments are used up and new ones can be produced, the country’s moneyed elite and the politicians they pay earn trillions. This is the real reason why the Biden administration, like every aggressive administration before it, is concerned with expanding American hegemony: speculation and aiming to gain access to new sales markets as well as access to unimaginably rich sources of fossil fuels in order to make billions at the expense of poorer regions and climate change. At the same time, they feign to the international public an alleged commitment to combating the manmade climate crises.

Thus, if parts of Russia were to fall under U.S. control through the installation of puppet regimes such as those in Kiev, American world power would be expanded. What neither succeeded in the direct US-wars of aggression against Afghanistan in 2001, Iraq in 2003, and Libya in 2011, could now lead to the fulfillment of true American intentions against Russia – as long as Ukraine can be prompted not to negotiate with Putin in a real way.

In connection with the U.S. wars against the three countries mentioned, the majority of the populace in the U.S., and not only there, obviously forgets with what brute air strikes these wars were opened. Exact casualty figures cannot be determined, but conservative estimates assume that several hundred thousand people, mostly civilians, have fallen victim to the terrorist attacks of the USA.

In the end – and this is also part of the truth – the Americans have not succeeded in installing regimes in Libya, Afghanistan, or Iraq that are obedient to them. From Afghanistan, where the Taliban returned, the brilliant US-military – the most expensive one in the world – ran away from one hour to the other, leaving equipment behind to the delight of medieval warriors in sandals, but also a country they have plunged into misery and chaos with their senseless invasion. The American military, at the behest of decisive politicians, has not solved a single problem anywhere – it has created more conflict and havoc wherever it has appeared. These are the facts.

Generally, fingers today are pointed at Putin, while George W. Bush (“God told me to start this war”) has never been held accountable for the war crimes committed under his presidency.

Russian Roulette with Red Lines

The War in Ukraine has more than one Culprit

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

The invasion of Ukraine is not going the way Russia envisioned – but the thought of abandoning his plans is unbearable for Vladimir Putin. At stake is Ukraine, his security buffer to the West. The enormous American and European aid flowing there has made the military situation very precarious for the Russians, prompting their president now to order a partial mobilization of Russian forces. There is even talk of using tactical nuclear weapons. An escalation of the conflict to this extent would be a catastrophe for all of Europe.

Workers’ uprising in the GDR in 1953: Soviet tanks roll through East Berlin and other places of the Soviet satellite state. The USA and the two other victorious powers in Berlin, France and Great Britain, looked on powerlessly a few hundred yards away.

Why did it have to come to this? Can the responsibility for this dire situation really be attributed solely to Russia? After all, it was they who started this war. A war, however, that has a long pre-history between Russians and Ukrainians, but also Europe.

At a time when everyone is talking about globalization, it is worth taking a look at recent history. During the Cold War, there were many situations that could have easily led to nuclear catastrophe. The two great powers, the USA and the communist Soviet Union, friends and allies against Hitler in the second half of the Second World War, fought proxy wars against each other virtually all over the world or even intervened directly, as the Americans did in Vietnam.

That was far away. But in the field of tension Europe, the Americans have never dared to act against the Soviets as they are now doing in Ukraine, right on Russia’s doorstep. When the Soviets tried to starve out West Berlin in 1948/49 by blocking the access routes in order to force the three Western powers to abandon the city, the Americans and the British flew non-stop missions via an air lift to Tempelhof to supply the population with all the necessities of life. Military action was out of the question for all sides, although the Soviets threatened it several times.

Four years later, when the workers’ uprising in the GDR took place and Soviet tanks rolled through East Berlin to crush it, the Americans watched in protest from a few hundred meters away but did not dare to intervene militarily. On August 13, 1961, when the East German communists sealed off West Berlin with barbed wire and construction of the Wall began, President John F. Kennedy was in Hyannis Port for a sail and did not want to be disturbed1. The West had known in advance what was going on with the approval of the Soviets – and did not intervene, even though there was a Berlin crisis team in the Washington State Department, set up long before.

Nor did the Americans lift a finger during the 1956 uprising in Hungary, which was put down particularly bloodily by invading Soviet troops; nor during the Prague Spring in 1968, nor in Poland in 1970 and 1981, when, by the way, Republican presidents were sitting in the White House.

These invaded states were all involuntary satellites of the Soviets and wanted to go their own independent ways, just like the Ukraine today. They were not involved in “real wars” with the Soviet Union, but at least the Soviets intervened militarily, and no one helped these countries at the time.

In a certain way, the West had accepted the sphere of influence of the Soviet Union, although there, too, the suffering of the population including politically motivated killings, imprisonments and deportations of hundreds of thousands of people were the order of the day. However, even because of all this, economic relations were never seriously questioned between the two power blocks, on the contrary. And in all these moments of world political dangers and wars, when everything was at stake, Russian natural gas and oil continued to flow not only to the Federal Republic of Germany and the former GDR, but to almost all of Western Europe during the Cold War and afterwards. Even the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 did not play a destructive role in this pattern of ongoing cooperation, apart from a boycott of the Olympic Games.

So, the question is: Why did the West interfere so massively in Ukraine’s affairs right after the Soviet Union fell apart in late 1991, when individual republics like Ukraine broke away from it and the Russian Federation under President Boris Yeltsin tried to see the West as a partner? What were the Bidens, Trumps and Giulianis and their stooges doing in Ukraine, where almost the entire upper stratum of society including governments were corrupt to the core? None of this looked like well-meaning intentions on the part of the West – more like a dangerous, creeping imperial expansion of its own sphere of power, as the Americans saw themselves as the general triumphant force after the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Nevertheless, there is no justification for the war in Ukraine. However, if all accepted red lines from the Cold War era had not been crossed today, this war might not have happened.

Notes:

1 A note on my own behalf: In view of the historical facts and as someone who was born in 1961 at the eastern interface of the Cold War, the question does not even arise to me to whom I owe my personal freedom. The courageous mass demonstrations in the GDR, which led to the opening of the Berlin Wall in 1989, could have been put down by the Soviets just as they had been in 1953. Here, too, the Americans could only have watched, or rather had to watch, in order not to endanger world peace. I owe my freedom to Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Soviet party and state leader and his policy of glasnost and perestroika (openness and restructuring). – I emphasize this explicitly because I have heard many voices in America according to which the USA and Ronald Reagan brought down the Berlin Wall, although the latter was not even in office anymore at the time. It would be more correct to say that the Americans kept the path to this development open – but they could not bring it about themselves.

A Shot in Their own Leg

From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2022 by Uwe Bahr

In the main German news yesterday (September 16), a commentary said that Russia is waging an economic war against Europe. This is now the usual choice of words in most of the media in my home country – not much better than elsewhere. But they know very well how untrue this phrasing is, for the sanctions have been initiated by the Europeans and the Americans as a reaction to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, while the responding Russia is accused by the German government of breach of treaty in trade relations.

In reality, the Europeans are shooting themselves in their own foot. What were they thinking the Russian reaction would be if the country was hit with one sanction package after another?

Anyone who trades with Russia does not at the same time make himself an accomplice in the Ukraine war. If this were true, then Germany – and not only Germany – would have been an accomplice in countless wars so many times. The Americans in particular have instigated so many wars of aggression that even German history cannot keep pace. But no Western European country, let alone Germany, has ever started an economic war because of this.

It is Germany that has to pay the highest price for the nonsensical sanctions, while the Americans rub their hands. Not only can they now sell their dirty fracking gas to Europe, but thanks to low energy prices and the discriminatory deregulation of workers’ rights in their own country, they will also become even more profitable as an industrial destination for companies from overseas. Whether the U.S. has a real interest in ending the war in Ukraine as soon as possible is at least open to doubt.

I hope for resistance from the German people not to let their own government rob them of their livelihood. It would not be the first time in our history that pressure from the street forces a government to resign or an entire system to collapse.

From my perspective, only non-violent protest can bring about a change to rationality, hopefully without playing into the hands of right-wing populists as in the USA. But the situation is not much better in many other countries: Millions of people in the developed world are susceptible to dangerous populist slogans because they have legitimate concerns and feel abandoned by politicians from moderate camps who are more intertwined with the interests of big business than actually contributing to a solution for the world’s pressing problems – such as man-made climate change – with the necessary resolve.

These are the consequences of a globalization that no one imagined 30 years ago.