Morgan D. Rose
This week, John McCain removed a post on his twitter feed that read, “Dear Vlad, The #ArabSpring is coming to a neighborhood near you”. McCain’s blatant provocation of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin appeared as a stark admission of US geopolitical meddling in both the Arab World and Russia, and revealed the arrogance with which the US/NATO establishment has pursued its policy of ‘Color Revolution’ directed towards the member-states and strategic allies of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
|Above: John McCain delivers a shocking provocation to Russian PM Vladimir
Putin via Twitter. His post was later removed.
Foreshadowing this latest instigation by McCain was a comment made in mid-February of this year in an interview with CBS’s Face the Nation, in which McCain stated, “These winds of change that are blowing, I think I would be a little less cocky in the Kremlin with my KGB cronies today if I were [Russian Prime Minister] Vladimir Putin. I would be a little less secure in the seaside resort that [Chinese] President Hu and a few men who govern and decide the fate of 1.3 billion people.”
This statement was made in the context of the ongoing unrest across the Arab World at the height of hysteria in the West over the so called “Arab Spring”. Absent in this discussion within the Western corporate media was the intimate involvement of US and NATO-backed NGOs in organizing and facilitating the pro-democracy protests. In fact, McCain himself chaired one of the NGOs credited as having helped “nurture the Arab uprisings”. These NGOs would play the role of attempting to destabilize the entire region, with disastrous results for the people on the ground.
NGO’s and Color Revolution
While the protesters soaked in the limelight of media attention, US and NATO-backed NGOs lurked in the background having been trained in the techniques of ‘Color Revolution’, an ongoing geopolitical phenomena which has already taken hold in former Soviet and Warsaw Pact satellites like Serbia, Ukraine, and Georgia. The techniques of Color Revolution were developed in the 1980s as a means to employ “non-violence as a form of warfare”. The primary NGOs which developed these techniques were Gene Sharp’s Albert Einstein Institute, State Department auxiliaries Freedom House and The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), as well as, various foundations associated with billionaire financier George Soros.
Observers of Color Revolutions in the middle part of the decade have identified a common theme among the techniques employed by these NGOs to include: the presence of ‘flash mobs’ of ‘swarming’ adolescents linked together by technologies such as SMS or Twitter, sloganeering and branding using colors such as Ukraine’s ‘Orange Revolution’ and the more recent failed ‘Green Revolution’ in Tehran, as well as, the presence of telegenic demagogues, backed by Western influence, to steer the movement, such as Georgia’s Mikheil Saakashvili and Egypt’s Mohammad ElBaradei. In many ways, the Arab Spring exhibited the use of these techniques, and are documented to have received training from NGOs affiliated with the proliferation of Color Revolution.
Beginning in January of this year with the toppling of Ben Ali and Mubarak, Color Revolution did for Washington’s Greater Middle East Initiative, what Bush’s occupations could not: destabilize the region to embrace the potential for NATO and IMF hegemony over sovereign national economies. However, by mid-summer, the obstinacy of Gaddafi’s Jamahariya had slowed the procession of Color Revolution across the Arab World to an abortive state. It look 8 months of violence and nearly 100,000 civilian casualties to install the Libyan rebel National Transitional Counicl (NTC), who could not have achieved victory without NATO carpet bombings under the absurd UN mandate of the “Right to Protect”. However, with the fall of Tripoli and subsequent extrajudicial lynching of Gaddafi this October, new life was given to Color Revolution destabilization and higher stakes were lain on the geopolitical table.
Obama’s ‘Grand Chessboard’: Escalations with Syria, Iran, and Pakistan
The ascendancy of the Obama Administration has been marked by a veritable policy shift away from the brutal aggression of the Neoconservatives towards a “soft power” faction in American imperial circles, signified by figures like Joseph Nye and Zbigneiw Brzezinski. While the inner-workings of this policy shift tend more towards subtleties and deception, its intentions may indeed be more sinister. While the Neoconsertative Weltanschauung centered its focus on Tel-Aviv, the faction represented by Obama has its sights on a more formidable opponent in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), namely, the rising powers of Russia and China.
Brzezinski’s 1998 thesis, The Grand Chessboard and his more recent Second Chance, are in many ways representative of the implicit goals of the Obama regime: Balkanization of the Eurasian peninsula and a heightened geopolitical escalation with the SCO and its strategic allies. Given this context, we see the geopolitical stakes of NATO adventurism in Libya to be quite tame compared to the looming intervention in Syria. In Libya, the geopolitical stakes were largely afrocentric, as Gaddafi had positioned himself as a leading African statesman, championing development and aid of neighboring Mali, Chad, and Niger, and working to secure African unity through his ambitious plan for a Pan-African “Gold Dinar” currency.
In Syria, we see the stakes as much larger. Not only does an attack on Syria lead strait to Tehran, and its proxy army in Hezbollah, it also signifies a direct assault on the SCO, in particular Russia. Syria has for many years been of strategic importance to Russia, in that it is home to one of Russia’s primary warm-water naval bases, located in Tartus on the Mediterranean coast. The recent announcement of the Arab League’s sanctions on Syria, lead primarily by the NATO puppet states of the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, has prompted a move on the part of Russia to send warships to Syria, as it aims strengthen its naval presence in the Mediterranean.
Meanwhile, the US has put new pressures on SCO ally Iran, beginning in October with the announcement of the laughably ridiculous ‘Iran assassination plot’, which has been largely debunked even in the sphere of mainstream corporate media. On the heels release of the latest IAEA report, Iran has seen numerous covert attacks on its military installations and nuclear facilities. For years, the US has funded and armed separatist and terrorist factions within Iran, who continue to destabilize Iran’s border regions around Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Yet, in the midst of these ground-shaking escalations to the west of NATO’s decade-long occupation of Afghanistan, last week’s attack on a Pakistani military base, killing 24 Pakistani soldiers, has thrown the logistical feasibility of a continued NATO presence in the region into doubt. This egregious violation of long standing US-Pakistani relations prompted the head of the Pakistani Military, General Kayani, to force the closure of a US/NATO drone base in Balochistan, and a revision of the Pakistani rules of engagement to order all commanders to respond with force to any attack within the Pakastani national borders.
The attack puts the NATO mission into jeopardy, as Russia has come to the aid of its fellow SCO partner in threatening to cut vital NATO supply lines to Afghanistan. This upsurge in tensions between the US and Pakistan is a dangerous game for the West, as China has been warning since May of this year that, “any attack on Pakistan would be construed as an attack on China”. This has prompted some American commentators to speculate on the rise of a new Cold War with China, as the US ramps up its strategic naval presence in the South China Sea and the Straits of Malacca.
Russia’s Color Revolution
McCain’s provocative tweet, which not so subtlety indicated a US role in recent Russian protests regarding its elections, comes at a crucial time for US-Russian relations as the weak and ineffectual President Dmitry Medvedev’s fading from power signals a reemergence of Putin on the world stage. Putin’s resurgence has also signaled a shift in geopolitical posturing for the Russians as they move away from Medvedev’s “reset” with Obama and the West, towards a more defensive position, as demonstrated by Russia’s recent veto of sanctions on Syria in the UN Security Council. Last week, the US’s insistence on moving foward with its Ballistic Missile Defense Sheild (BMD) prompted Russia to threaten the deployment of missiles along its boarders with Turkey and Poland. With good reason, Russia has feared that completion of the BMD, which could also be used offensively, and would give the US and NATO a thermo-nuclear first strike capability which would threaten the existence of the Russian Federation. Russia is not naive about the West’s intentions for dominance over its geopolitical sphere as NATO encroachment and encirclement of Russia remains a key strategic initiative of the West.
In 2008, as the Neoconservatives were fading from power in Washington, the US attempted to launch a proxy war using its newly installed puppet and beneficiary of the “Roses Revolution”, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili in a bid to occupy disputed territory in South Ossetia. Putin’s restraint in that blatant provocation adverted the potential for a wider war with NATO. Today, we cannot expect Putin to be so forgiving, as the US is now clearly using NGOs to destabilize his country in the wake of its elections. Central to this US meddling in Russian electoral politics is the organization Golos, which masquerades as an election monitoring organization, while being heavily funded by the promulgators of Color Revolution, the National Endowment for Democracy. Putin has now placed the blame on Hillary Clintons doorstep, calling the recent outbreak of protests and the Russian government’s subsequent response, “defense from interference from abroad”. These new direct confrontations with Russia should serve as a grim harbinger of events to follow, as the West, in the throws of an economic breakdown crisis, becomes increasingly desperate. Expect the likelihood for greater and more violent provocations to become exponentially greater in the near future.