G-7 Leaders Stay Tough on Russia - Irresponsibly
by Stephen Lendman
Obama pressured other G-7 leaders to stay hardline on Russia well before summit discussions began on Sunday - a policy benefitting America at their expense.
How long they'll go along with what's clearly not in their interest remains to be seen. What can't go on forever, won't.
Russia plans longterm. It sees normalization ahead at some point with key EU "partners." Don't expect US softening given its longstanding regime change objective.
Washington wants pro-Western stooge governance replacing Vladimir Putin. He's a strong proponent of respecting the sovereign independence of all nations.
He fundamentally opposes America's imperial agenda. He's sharply at odds with its unipolar worldview. He enjoys overwhelming popular support at home.
He's Washington's public enemy number one. From Germany, Obama stressed "standing up to (nonexistent) Russian aggression in Ukraine." Sanctions will be maintained "to put pressure on Russian and separatist forces to implement fully the Minsk agreement."
"(I)t's going to require that Europe, the United States and the Transatlantic Partnership, as well as the world, stay vigilant and stay focused on the importance of upholding the principles of territorial integrity and sovereignty," he said.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest said "(t)he commitment required by our European partners to implement and maintain these sanctions is significant."
"They have economies that are more integrated with Russia than the United States has, and so we recognize that many of the countries that we’re counting on to continue to enforce these sanctions are countries who do so at some sacrifice to their own economy."
It bears repeating. For how long remains to be seen. Big Lies about Russia persist. Moscow "thumbed (its) nose at the (ceasefire) commitments…made" in Munich, Earnest blustered.
Fact: Russia alone continues going all-out to resolve things diplomatically.
Fact: Washington and its Kiev junta proxy want war, not peace.
Fact: Russia continues being blamed irresponsibly for their high crimes. Expect no letup ahead.
Britain marches in lockstep with Washington's worst policies. Prime Minister David Cameron urged a continued "robust response to (nonexistent) Russian-backed aggression…"
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's spokesman Stephen Leece said he "strongly advocate(s)" maintaining pressure and sanctions on Russia."
He "stands ready to impose further measures against the Putin regime if Moscow refuses to halt its aggressive behavior."
European Council President Donald Tusk said the only question with regard to sanctions is whether to toughen them.
Former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt (1974 - 1982) expressed "limited expectations" for positive summit results. He hoped participants would avoid "adding fuel to the fire."
Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder (1998 - 2005) expressed similar views, saying:
"I believe it’s a mistake that the Russian president has not been invited to the summit. When stances differ, it is necessary to discuss these differences. That could have been done at the summit."
Germany's Social Democratic Party vice-chairman Ralph Stegner said discussing geopolitical issues can't exclude involving Russia.
"If the Western countries have a desire to hold meetings only with those who share common values, then they will find it hard to assemble enough people even for the G2 format," he stressed.
US-led efforts to marginalize, weaken and isolate Russia failed. Its upper house Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko's article titled "BRICS: An Outline of a Fair World Order" preceded its first parliamentary June 8 forum in Moscow with Putin currently serving as association president.
Matviyenko said BRICS countries share "a common agenda" of mutual cooperation - including "defending their sovereignty, protection and promotion of their national interests on the basis of the principles of equality, noninterference in each other’s internal affairs, non-acceptance of a unipolar world."
Five BRICS nations represent a significant counterweight to G-7 dominance. They comprise an important economic and political bloc - on three continents covering more than one-fourth of the world's land mass with around 40% of its population.
They're a growing force to be reckoned with. They're clearly "an international community pursuing an independent policy on the international arena, rejecting any attempts of outside pressure," said Matviyenko.
"Condemnation by BRICS countries of the policy of sanctions against Russia, our presidency of BRICS, the holding of the BRICS summit and parliamentary forum on our territory are a convincing demonstration of a failure of the plans to isolate Russia from the international community," she stressed.
Wrongheaded policies only work so long. Eventually they're doomed to fail. US influence is declining.
The late historian Gabriel Kolko believes it "began after the Korean War, was continued in relation to Cuba, and was greatly accelerated in Vietnam - but (GW Bush did) much to exacerbate it further."
Sociologist Immanuel Wallerstein believes America's decline accelerated post-9/11. "The economic, political and military factors that contributed to US hegemony are the same (ones) inexorably produc(ing)" its coming decline, he said.
The late Chalmers Johnson called it the same dynamic that doomed past empires - "isolation, overstretch, the uniting of local and global forces opposed to imperialism, and in the end bankruptcy" - combined with growing authoritarianism and loss of personal freedom.
The combination of endless wars, an empire of bases, and bloated military spending (at the expense of vital homeland needs) in pursuit of unchallenged global dominance heads America for tyranny and ruin.
Only the timing of its imperial decline is unknown - as well as the greater harm it may cause before it goes the way of all other empires in history.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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