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‘Leading from behind’: Is Washington at war with Moscow?

By Ramzy Baroud | MEMO | September 17, 2022

Though Washington insists that it is not interested in a direct military conflict with Moscow, the latter claims that the US is, in fact, directly involved. But who is telling the truth?

On 8 September, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken appeared in Kyiv on an unannounced visit. He carried with him pledges of yet another military and financial package of nearly $3 billion, mostly to Ukraine, but also to other Eastern European countries. According to a report published by The New York Times in May, US financial support for Ukraine has exceeded $54 billion.

Devex‘s funding platform states: “A relatively small percentage of that funding is humanitarian-focused.” The same source also indicates that the total amount of mostly military aid provided by the West to Ukraine between 24 February and 16 August has topped the $100 billion mark.

For such a massive military arsenal to operate, one can imagine the involvement of legions of military experts, trainers and engineers. Washington’s latest package includes hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid, such as more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS).

And more is coming. According to Blinken: “President Biden… will support the people of Ukraine as long as it takes.”

The Russians, however, have no illusions that US military support for Ukraine is confined to mere weapons shipments or limited to financial transactions. On 2 August, the Russian Defence Ministry accused the US of being “directly involved in the conflict in Ukraine.” The ministry’s statement cited an admission by Ukraine’s deputy head of military intelligence, Vadym Skibitsky, who told The Telegraph: “Washington coordinates HIMARS missile strikes.”

This is not the first time Russia accuses the US of direct involvement in the war. As early as 25 March, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the West had declared “total war” on Russia. In this instance, Moscow’s top diplomat was referencing every aspect of this “real hybrid war”, including unprecedented sanctions that were meant to break the back of Russia’s economy and the will of its military forces. Since then, the US Western embargo on Russia has exceeded 10,000 sanctions, an unprecedented number in modern conflicts.

Also, since then, the nature of American involvement in the war has changed. The type of weapons first provided to Kyiv by Washington quickly transformed from weapons of defensive capabilities with limited outreach, to weapons of offensive capabilities with long-range artillery systems, including HIMARS and M270.

Much of the US involvement can be understood through common sense. Consider Politico‘s report on 29 August, alleging that: “Since the early days of the war, Kyiv has seized the initiative as missile strikes and mysterious explosions have wreaked havoc on the Russian fleet, sinking several vessels… and devastating its Crimea-based air wing in a dramatic attack this month.” If these details are accurate, it is hard to imagine that such success would have been carried out by, as described by Politico itself, a “small Ukrainian navy”.

When American weapons are provided and operated by American military experts, and when the movement of Russian forces is monitored by American satellite coordinates, one should easily conclude that the US is indeed involved in a direct war with Russia. This argument is strengthened by the fact that the US is utilising all of its expertise in economic warfare, used against Iraq, Cuba and others, to devastate the Russian economy.

But why does the US refuse to accept that it is engaged in a direct war against Russia?

Successive US administrations have perfected the art of engaging in military conflicts without making such a declaration. As the US fought its protracted war in Vietnam starting in the mid-1950s, it engaged in many other military conflicts that were mostly kept secret. These undeclared wars included the Nixon administration’s secret bombing campaigns in Cambodia, which resulted in the estimated deaths of 100,000 people.

To curtail the power of the president to conduct war without notifying Congress, the US Congress passed the War Powers Resolution of 1973, also known as the War Powers Act. Despite a presidential veto, a two-thirds majority in Congress managed to pass the resolution into law. Still, successive administrations found ways around the law, including the US involvement in the bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999 and again in the US war on Libya in 2011.

In fact, it was in Libya that the phrase “leading from behind” was used in abundance. Americans seemed to have found a brilliant way of engaging in war while avoiding its costly political consequences. This way, former US President Barack Obama could be involved in several wars all at once without being called an interventionist or a war-mongering president.

To understand the extent of America’s ongoing, undeclared wars, marvel at this 1 July report by The Intercept, which obtained the data using the Freedom of Information Act. This was “the first official confirmation that at least 14” military operations – known as 127e programs – were active in the Middle East and the Asia Pacific region in 2020, and that between 2017 and 2020, US commandos carried out 23 separate operations.

So, even if the US engages in direct combat against Russia, the chances of war being declared are almost nil. Therefore, the extent of US involvement can only be gleaned from evidence on the ground.

Call it “leading from behind”, “proxy war” or “hybrid war”, Washington is very much a party in the devastating war in Ukraine, which is paying a heavy price for Washington’s desire to remain the world’s only superpower.

September 17, 2022 - Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , ,

5 Comments »

  1. ‘Leading from behind’: Is Washington at war with Moscow?

    Of course it is. Blinken of course is representing two countries(as a dual passport holder). and he carries out Israel’s agenda as well as Washington’s agenda. And, whatever Jerusalem wants, Washington complies, without a moment’s hesitation…..”YES SIR”.

    “They’ve gotcha by the Balls”….George Carlin.

    Like

    Comment by brianharryaustralia | September 17, 2022 | Reply

  2. The US might think it is clever by never calling its interventions ‘wars’, but there is nothing to prevent the opposition from claiming that they have declared war, and calling their bluff. Obviously with small nations this will have no effect, but when the opposition is Russia or China, which have the firepower to hit the United States without going beyond their borders, then the Yanks need to think very carefully who they are trying to bully.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Bill Francis | September 18, 2022 | Reply

  3. Thank you, Ramzy Baroud for this.

    The title is worthy of a comment: it’s accurate. Whether by any way to name, to call America’s involvement, America is engaged in war on Russia. As to how so and with whom, it’s obvious. The American President, Joe Biden and his neoconservative–read jewish, domestic and foreign–advisors are engaging America in this war against Russia. Congress has not declared war, but, so what? Isn’t that obvious?

    The evidence of the involvement of Israel in the attack on the World Trade Center, the success and outcome thereafter, is becoming available, is overwhelmingly evident, obvious, also: Israel is at war with America. Isn’t that obvious?

    In some ways, America’s involvement in war with Russia can be likened to the Israeli warring on its neighbors. Israel is warring upon people within Israel who are not jewish and/or a “country” within Israel, if Palestine can be called a country. So, include America as a target of Israel’s war. No convoluted reasoning, rationalization by Israel and its partisans can be regarded as denying this war as the evidence is also overwhelming. This comment will not attempt a list of the ways in which the war has been and is waged.

    Both are wars, but not declared wars.

    This following how Israel will not declare an obvious is “leading from behind”. Perhaps America can follow Israel and begin to leave as ambiguous its nuclear weapons, too.

    The “leading from behind” is kind of an Israeli tactic, one perfected by Israel: Israel is engaged in warfare against many people, countries and cultures. For some countries, including America, it’s a Zionist Conquered Country, or ZCC, perhaps a new acronym, as is ZOG, for Zionist Occupied Government. This war is clandestine as well as an overt.

    So, the clandestine engagement of war as practiced by Israel, is analogous to America’s now non-declaration of war on Russia. America is following the Israeli model.

    That is a model surely leading to escalation. Do you want to follow that model, America?

    Another Israeli model to reject, to realize its catastrophic dimension is having Israel involve America in another middle east war, for Israel’s benefit. Israel would be gratified to have its desired wars in the middle east carried out by America. Iran is so obviously a target as to be a given, as over and over urged by Israel. Deniable? Hardly.

    Israel is not an ally to America. It is the opposite.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by michael | September 19, 2022 | Reply

    • Perhaps a Talmudic scholar can enlighten us as to where in the scripture this tactic is found.

      Like

      Comment by aletho | September 19, 2022 | Reply

    • “The evidence of the involvement of Israel in the attack on the World Trade Center, the success and outcome thereafter, is becoming available, is overwhelmingly evident, obvious, also: Israel is at war with America. Isn’t that obvious?”

      Yes. Israel treats America/Americans with contempt, and, if the Russians and the USA do eventually go to war, I imagine that the first U.S. city to be “Nuked” by the Russians, would be, New York. Wall St would be vaporised in a flash, and would cease to function, and The USA’s Banking system would be decimated.

      Hopefully, common sense would prevent this, but, when psychopaths control the MIC, I suppose, anything is possible.

      Like

      Comment by brianharryaustralia | September 19, 2022 | Reply


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