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Putin's War: Who Benefits?
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Moscow just opened up its 70 km metro subway line called the Big Circle Line (BCL). The BCL has 31 stations, with 24 of those providing 47 interchanges to existing and future stations of the capital's metro. It is now the world’s longest subway line.
The deputy mayor of Moscow for transport, Maksim Liksutov, said that the $6.6 billion BCL will serve as “an impetus to the capital’s development for decades to come,” adding that, “it would help decrease the traffic flow on the city’s highways by up to 15 percent, and would decongest metro lines by up to 25 percent.”
After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, 2,400 entities were hit with Russia-related sanctions by authorities in the U.S., European Union and U.K., according to data from analytics company LexisNexis Risk Solutions. “Not only are these restrictions being imposed at a speed we’ve not seen before, they’re also implemented against a permanent UN Security Council Member and an important global player – a situation without political precedent,” LexisNexis claims in a report, entitled The Perfect Sanctions Storm.
The special military operation (not war) has not hurt Putin’s popularity at home. He is currently polling at 82% approval rating. Compared that to a February 9 poll of President and used car salesman, Joe Biden, who sits at an unenthusiastic 41%. The poll also showed 65% of Americans think the country is on the wrong track.
US sanctions on Russia did not achieve the desired effect. Western sanctions on Russia reduced the global supply of oil and natural gas, but also pushed up prices. Russia profited from the higher prices, even though its exports decreased. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that Russia’s economy only contracted by 2.2% in 2022, compared with the 8.5% contraction it had forecast. It also predicts that the Russian economy will actually grow by 0.3% in 2023.
In his state-of-the-union speech, President Putin laid out a long list of reforms that I documented in an earlier article. These social programs, infrastructure and initiatives are something, only a nation in an upward economic trend would consider:
Contrarily, Ukraine’s economy is in the toilet. It has shrunk by more than 35%, despite $46 billion in economic aid from the U.S. government, on top of $67 billion in military aid.
And speaking of weapons of mass destruction, the Big Five American weapons manufacturers (Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon and General Dynamics) are doing well over the last year, with anticipated contracts forthcoming, to replace the stockpiles already sent to the Ukraine. However, the quantities of weapons to be produced outstrip the amounts shipped to Ukraine by up to 500 to one. A defense budget analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Marc Cancian commented, “This isn’t replacing what we’ve given [Ukraine]. It’s building stockpiles for a major ground war in the future.”
The US Senate Armed Services Committee authorized $2.7 billion for future munitions production in June of 2022.
750,000 rounds for 155mm artillery
1,000 M777 Howitzers
700 M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems
100,000 Guided Multiple Launch Rocket Systems
30,000 AGM-114 Hellfire missiles
36,000 AGM-179 Joint Air-to-Ground Missiles
1,000 Harpoon missiles
800 Naval Strike Missiles
10,000 Patriot Advanced Capability - 3 air defense system
6,000 MGM-140 Army Tactical Missile Systems
20,000 AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air missiles
20,000 Stinger anti-aircraft missiles
25,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles
The big losers of the war in Ukraine are first of all, the average Ukrainian citizen. According to a UN report, approximately 7.9 million Ukrainians were displaced and left the country. About half of those people returned to Ukraine within the last year leaving some four million Ukrainian refugees now still living in European countries and elsewhere today. The USA has opened its doors to 100,000 Ukrainian refugees with plans to admit 216,000.
In Canada, almost 167,600 Ukrainian citizens and Canadian permanent residents of Ukrainian origin had arrived by land or air as of February 26th, according to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Thus far, Canada has received 882,222 applications and approved 575,210. This is an enormous number of immigrants that will be arriving over the next year. Many of these refugees will be applying for flight expenses. Upon arrival, refugees can apply for work permits, free healthcare and school for their kids. The Canadian government is also waiving the fees to enter. This will all be shouldered by the Canadian taxpayer.
Canadians like being helpful, kind and compassionate. Even the most jaded Canadians cannot ignore the devastation of the war:
The supply chain disruptions, sanctions, escalating gas and oil prices, high food prices, inflation have affected the entire world, but the burden will land the hardest on the working classes. The WEF, in its Global Risks Report, puts the cost-of-living crisis at the top of the list for the next two years. Well, they ought to know. The WEF also predicts “the lagged effect of a price spike in fertilizer” would hit food production across the world in 2023. This is because Russia and Belarus are two of the world’s largest exporters of fertilizer. In other words, the worst is yet to come this year, and this will particularly affect the Global South.
The death toll from the war is in the hundreds of thousands, and assuming the United States and its NATO allies are serious in their plans for an escalation in the hostilities, this is only the beginning of sorrows.
The Nordstream Pipeline, according to Seymour Hersh’s investigation, was blown up by the American military:
“Last June, the Navy divers, operating under the cover of a widely publicized mid-summer NATO exercise known as BALTOPS 22, planted the remotely triggered explosives that, three months later, destroyed three of the four Nord Stream pipelines, according to a source with direct knowledge of the operational planning.”
This cut off a vital supply of gas and oil to Germany and the EU. Always pragmatic, Russia offered discount prices to move its surplus, and by March, 2022, combined oil imports by China and India from Russia overtook those from the 27 EU member states. Sri Lanka and Pakistan also signed up for cheap Russian crude oil. India, China and Turkey all increased their purchases of Russian oil last year, and they now make up 70% of all Russian crude flows by sea.
The losers here are the Europeans, who decreased imports of Russian gas from 40% to 17%. Germany’s gas prices have quadrupled since the sanctions and yet a deafening silence from the EU concerning their American partners who just blew up their source of cheap gas:
China has much to gain in ensuring the conflict is extended. Absorbing western attention by a long costly war of attrition relieves pressure on China so they can carry on with their “peaceful rise.” A defeat for Putin in the Ukraine would appear on the world stage as a defeat for autocratic regimes such as China.
The odds of the west winning the war in Ukraine are slim. If they move NATO troops into the mix, it’s game on for WW3. China will have no choice but to get involved. Other Russian allies, Syria, North Korea, Belarus, Cuba and Nicaragua would most likely offer support which could involve weapons or troops. Cuba’s geographical proximity to the USA is not good for American security.
The fact that a Russian axis would be vastly outnumbered by a NATO alliance means that Russia would most likely get backed into a corner and resort to nuclear weapons. A lose-lose for everybody. There are only a few reasons open to explain why US/NATO would be pushing so hard for a war they cannot possibly win:
They are idiots
US/NATO are fully aware they cannot win, but in the interest of not appearing weak on the world stage, they are engaging in political theater
It is an elaborate psychological operation designed to further the goals of the globalists.
My next post, entitled Chaos: Multiplying the Multipolar World is going to look into the possibility of #3. Stay tuned.
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