This important article was shared by many of you, and in the wake of my commentary in last Thursday's News and Views from the Nefarium concerning Jean-Claude Juncker and Germany....er....Europe....er, uhm, Germany... I mean, really, Europe, wanting a new European army for the nice shiny new Kaiserrei...uhm, European Union. It seems Germany's SDP Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Ribbentro...er... Steinmeir and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Moloto...uhm... Sergei Lavrov (It gets so confusing sometimes keeping straight what's going on), were busy laying wreaths at Volograd in a memorial commemoration of the Battle of Stalingrad during World War Two. During the memorial, both men said nice things about each other and each other's countries, and and in general, it was a bit of sobering, somber, let's be friends Gemuetlichkeit:
Now, the key here is the context for these remarks:
"Lavrov told a media conference on Thursday that Russia will welcome a revived partnership:“I want to say with all honesty: we are receiving signals from our NATO partners that it wouldn't hurt to renew cooperation between our military departments. If there are any specific proposals to that end, we will certainly react in a constructive way,”he assured.
"Lavrov was speaking to the media with his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier after the two had paid their respects to the memorial mass graves of Russian and German soldiers in Russia’s Volgograd. Formerly known as Stalingrad, the city was the scene of the bloodiest battle in World War II and possibly in the history of warfare."
Clearly, the symbolism of the timing of this announcement was carefully chosen: Stalingrad was one of the worst military disasters in history, and this it's a friendly little reminder to Europe, and more importantly, to Europe's senior partner, the USA, that invasions of Russia really haven't worked out too well historically. About the only ones that were successful at it were the Mongols and Kaiser Wilhelm II, and in the end, even they disappeared, and Russia remained. But it's a subtle message from Germany too. Part of the message is of course that the Soviet Union barely survived the German onslaught in World War Two, and had it not been largely for the incompetence of some of Hitler's decisions during that campaign, it might not have.
The event, in other words, was a carefully chosen event for the Big Two in Europe to hold one of their periodic "group hugs," with other participants - like Poland - concerned about just how much love might be going around. Doubtless there are messages being sent here, and it would be foolhardy to assume - as many in the Western media will inevitably attempt to spin it - that this is weakness on Russia's part.
The real message is, Russia is talking to NATO, it is talking to Europe, through Germany, and in that respect, it's another play to pry Europe away from the USA.
Create nice new shiny European army, and that's all but guaranteed. And if that happens, that will lead American bases and soldiers confined uneasily to that old cordon sanitaire in Eastern Europe...
In short, the game's not over yet, nor will it be soon. But nothing in these moves comes as a surprise to me, for we've been consistently arguing here that eventually, Germany, and therefore Europe, will bolt from the US orbit.
See you on the flip side...