By Matthew Clark
At the present moment (September 2023) it appears that the counter offensive by the Ukraine military against Russian armed forces has failed. During the winter, and spring of 2022, Russian soldiers, and airman, staged a successful limited offensive against their Ukraine enemies. This campaign cultimated in the capture of the key city of Bakmut! Ukraine fighting forces responded to this development by spending months preparing, than initiating, an offensive of their own. No meaningful achievements have resulted from the Ukraine action, although the western aligned nation has suffered enormous casualties (reference Colonel Douglas MacGregor, former U.S. Presidential advisor).
After almost 20 months of war the Russians, albeit at substantial material and human cost, have liberated eastern, Russian majority speaking, Ukraine, while securing a land bridge to Crimea. Western applied sanctions have caused some damage to the Russian economy, yet much more to the western allied (NATO) countries. According to the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank, Russia has recently surpassed Germany to become Europes largest economy.
Divisions have become noticable both between NATO nations, and within the military institutions countries. Governments of Germany, as well as the United States, have expressed such hostility to the Hungarian administration of Viktor Orban, for his conciliatory attitude to the Russian state, that Mr. Orban has warned his allies he will not succumb to their machinations without a fight. Large scale protests against NATO support for Ukraine, although not covered by a mostly compliant Western media, occur regularly throughout Europe. One hundred thousand protestor rallies have taken place in Berlin, and Prague, to name a few examples.
As has transpired in Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq, Syria, Western aligned nations are involved in a conflict which, long term, is unsustainable. They can win many battles, indeed most of the fighting engagements, yet lose the war. What all these conflicts have in common with the war in Ukraine is that NATO forces are fighting for empire, while her opponents see themselves in an existential clash. Concurrently to this situation the North Atlantic Treaty Organization jurisdictions, along with friendly governments in Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand, are in an increasingly confrontational relationship with Russian ally Communist China.
Communist China, with a population of 1.4 billion people, complimentated by being the world's leading manufacturer, is the strongest challenger to the Western world's hegemony! Allied with resource rich Russia, who also enjoys a healthy manufacturing sector, results in Communist China becoming mightier than the United States and her alliance partners! Furthermore a Russian/Communist Chinese entente means that India, a Chinese adversary who suffered an unsuccessful October 1962 war against China, retains a stance of "non-alignment" in the geopolitical world. This is due to the close diplomatic ties the Indians and Russians have traditionally enjoyed.
In order to successfully thrawt the Communist Chinese challenge to their interests, the governments of the NATO nations should immediately instruct the Zelensky administration (of Ukraine) to make peace with Vladimir Putins Russia. This will mean, most probably, recognizing that Eastern Ukraine and Crimea, are under Russian sovereignty! Moreover the political leaders in Moscow will have to be assured that Ukraine, and Georgia, will not be incorporated into NATO, nor ever receive any nuclear weapons from the miitary organization.
Once the Russian victory has been acknowledged Western diplomats should take advantage of the traditional distrust Moscow and Beijing have for each other (they have been driven together through hostily from North American and European states) to forge a concordat with the government of President Putin. This would involve an enormous swallowing of pride by westerners, yet the benefits would be substantial. Russia has an extensive border with China. Countering Beijing's purchase of Russian manufacturing, and minerals, through mutually beneficial trade (as opposed to counter productive sanctions) with European and North American businesses, would be a game changer. Communist Chinese military personnel numbers would have to be expanded markedly along the Russo-Sino border. Russian and NATO diplomats would collaborate in convincing India to join the entente. Indians are much more likely to listen favourably to a Russian appeal of military and diplomatic co-operation. India has it's own extensive border with China which the Beijing regime would have to heavily guard if New Delhi came into cahoots with the Communists administration enemies. India has a large military force, the globes most numerous population, and an expanding, impressively sized, manufacturing sector. Welcoming the tiger nation into a friendship league with Russia, and the west, would place Communist China in a decidedly unfavourably geopolitical situation. Surrounded on all sides by powerful hostile forces, who collectively possess a military age population greater than her own, controlling more resources than Beijing could muster, and a manufacturing capacity equal, if not superior, to the Marxist authoritarian state, would find the Communist regimes options on the international geopolitical stage greatly reduced. An invasion of Taiwan, or bellicose naval actions against the maritime forces of other oriental countries, would become very risky.
Currently the future of geopolitics for NATO nations appears bleak! The Eurasian pact is more powerful than her adversarial western counterparts. Nevertheless employing realpolitik, however humbling, could, and very probably would, restore the balance in the NATO compacts favour, vis-a-vis Communist China. Given what is at stake it is time political leaders in Europe, North America, along with their allies around the globe, get off their pedestal and do what is right for their citizens!