Mar 11·edited Mar 11

1. This war was entirely intentional on the part of the United States.

2. Ukraine and its people have been encouraged by the United States and its satraps to take a maximalist position. That this will cause more pain for Ukrainian people is of no concern, much like how we have encouraged the ambitions of Kurdish leaders and then sold them out when convenient, what, six or seven times now?

3. Russia, China and Iran are not natural allies. They have been driven together by American aggression.

4. The rapprochement between Iran and Saudi Arabia, sponsored by Russia and China, is a devastating blow to American efforts to stir up strife and also destroys the American claim that Global Gorilla Bully Cop is necessary to keep the peace.

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So far most regular citizens of USA (like myself) can’t fathom “not supporting...” poor Ukraine. To suggest any ulterior motive , risks, etc as so eloquently pointed out here -hits a block wall with everyone I know

They’ve done their job well to garner unwavering support for this proxy war

I admit the first few weeks I was onboard... but knowing how USA loves war for their own rewards I quickly was educated by the likes of Mr Hedges and obvious truths-if you open your eyes

How do we get Americans to RECOGNIZE what’s really going on?

Thank you Chris for continually pounding home the reality of these bloody wars 🙏🙏

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Mar 11·edited Mar 11

I just saw yesterday that Iran and Saudiarabia is normalizing their relations, thanks to a Chinese peace inititiative. So not everything in this world is bleak.

With a little luck the USA will soon be torn apart by internal disorder and/or economical crisis, in a way that will spell the end of American hegemony. I feel sorry for ordinary Americans, who only want to live a good life, but having been on the receiving end of American imperialism, I find the destruction of American society and the suffering of the American people a price worth paying if it means the end of American exceptionalism.

As a citizen of Denmark, being "on the receiving end of American imperialism" really just means to be subjected to American cultural imperialism. It is not like Danes are dying all over the place because of American acts of war (except of course those of our soldiers who are brainwashed to take part in military operations conducted by various "alliances of the willing").

What American cultural imperialism has done to my country is rather subtle, and it can maybe best be described as a "will to be ignorant" that has taken root in the general population. When it comes to questions of war and peace, my country, which was arguably one of the most peaceful and peaceloving countries in the world before 2001, has now become a warriorstate, where people, who have no idea of the realities of war, have taken over the media in an effort to press the politicians into joining even more wars.

And our politicians have become brainwashed too: Negotiations are underway that will allow American troops on Danish soil, propably after the same model as in Norway, where Norwegian politicians have granted USA the right to keep nuclear weapons on Norwegian soil.

So to me the dilemma isn't really a dilemma: If I get the choice between the destruction of American society and the risk of Denmark being nuked by a paranoid Russia, who fears what nuclear wepons stationed in Denmark can do to the existence of Russia as a nation, the choice is simple: Fuck the USA.

Yankee go home. I really shouldn't be rooting for a Russian victory in Ukraine, but if it means the end of American hegemony, I am all in for it. After all, the collapse of the USA is in my best interest as a human being.

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The proxy war is also at the same time a war against the American psyche.

I too lived in Nicaragua all of 1985 as a journalist of sorts and saw the destruction and devastation of the country where 30,000 died.

We lived under constant fear of attack by either US or proxies in both Honduras and Costa Rica.

The horror has not been lost in memory.

Ollie North recently stated that:

"The Ukraine war will be won with American bullets and Ukrainian bodies."

In an interview by Fox News. Oliver North was asked why 110 billion dollars that the U.S. Congress appropriated for the war in Ukraine.

North says he sees the it as "money well spent".

Further he states: "The Ukrainian people ... are using their blood and our bullets".

Furthermore: "most of that 110 Billion ... is spent here in the United States...an investment"


This is the level of psychopath we are dealing with.

North is a self-proclaimed born-again Christian with more blood on his hands than Pontius Pilot.

Back then, Ronald Reagan the stooge of both the CIA and FBI and the Supreme Leader of the US (he was an informant for the FBI) put forth arguments Weimar Joe Biden is putting forth today regarding Ukraine:

"Reagan claims that military and economic aid to the Contras is necessary "so we'll never have to send our own American boys." He even told congressmen they had a choice between supporting him and supporting communism. But the choice is not so simple.

Reagan calls the Contras "freedom fighters" and has compared them to the Founding Fathers. He claims supporting their war against the Sandinista government is the only hope for democracy in Nicaragua. "

In that case, daily the Nicaraguan people felt the US incursions into their country while Americans were being told that if not stopped in Nicaragua, these wind-up Soviet Union sponsored Nicaraguans would invade us through MX!.

"Reagan claimed that the Sandinista government was a satellite of the Soviet Union, that Nicaragua was instigating revolution in neighboring Central American nations, and that the Contras were merely to be used as a “shield” against any possible Sandinista encroachments in the region. He was able to convince Congress to provide $100 million of aid, some of it designated as “humanitarian” assistance to the hungry and sick Contras and their supporters."


All lies with tremendous ramifications for the people of Nicaragua.

And the same gaggle of criminals responsible for the massacre of Nicaraguans are in power again today: Elliot Abrams, the neo Cons, Bill Barr (Barr arranged for the pardon of those high-ranking officials illegally involved in the Contra proxy war and went on to serve Trump), the Kagan family and of course Weimar Joe Biden who also supported the proxy war in Nicaragua and El Salvador.

Orwell noted in his manual for the elites:

"The essential act of war is destruction, not necessarily of human lives, but of the products of human labour. War is a way of shattering to pieces, or pouring into the stratosphere, or sinking in the depths of the sea, materials which might otherwise be used to make the masses too comfortable, and hence, in the long run, too intelligent. Even when weapons of war are not actually destroyed, their manufacture is still a convenient way of expending labour power without producing anything that can be consumed.

War accomplishes the necessary destruction, but accomplishes it in a psychologically acceptable way. In principle it would be quite simple to waste the surplus labour of the world by building temples and pyramids, by digging holes and filling them up again, or even by producing vast quantities of goods and then setting fire to them.

But this would provide only the economic and not the emotional basis for a hierarchical society."

George Orwell in his book "1984"

Appealing to emotions using sophistic rationality is as old if not older than the Greeks.

This time the US will not escape their folly so easily.

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With full control over the corporate media, the war machine has no trouble keeping the public onboard with wars of aggression. In fact, much of the current belligerence of the Biden administration may be in part due to the unpopularity of Joe Biden, who is using the age-old scheme of improving his public status by way of war. In the US, it is an almost universal principle that a failing president can drum up almost instant support and improved poll numbers by starting another war. While this phenomenon is clearly the fault of the war-mongering press, some blame has to be placed on a public that seems to favor war. No matter how many times the public finds out they were lied to about the last war, they cheer on the next one as though the previous lies had never happened.

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Apart from the horrible and pointless death and destruction, what shocks me most is the almost total control the US government seems to have over news media in the "free world." Apparently, it is very easy to manufacture consent these days.

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Mar 11·edited Mar 11

A great piece, as usual, Chris. However, I must take exception to the notion that Russia is being weakened by the war in Ukraine. To be sure, Russia is experiencing losses of soldiers and machines, but those losses are relatively light, and from Russia's point of view, "acceptable." At the same time, Russia has a seemingly limitless supply of weapons, and it is fighting the war while being only partially mobilized. In other words, it has plenty more to bring to the fore in the event of a wider war with the United States and NATO.

More importantly, Russia is developing increasingly friendly relations with China, India, Iran, Turkey (a NATO member) and much of the global South. These relationships will bear fruit both economically and militarily. Europe and the United States are no longer vital to Russia's power and prosperity. At the same time, Europe grows weaker as it flails about seeking energy to fuel its industries and heat its homes. NATO, including the US, has exhausted its stocks of surplus weapons and lacks the industrial capacity to rebuild them in a timely fashion. In a sense, the U.S. will be strengthened relative to a prostrate Europe, but weakened relative to a defiant Russia and China. Looking at the big picture, that is a downward move in terms of geopolitical strength and influence. Will America's ruling elite recognize and understand this shift in power relationships? I would not bet on it.

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Thank you, Chris

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"Betrayal is the closing act in nearly all proxy wars." Keep this thought in mind as Russia's war in Ukraine grinds on and the situation becomes more desperate. Think as well of what $113 billion invested in our country might have produced. Railroad safety, perhaps? Drinkable water in Jackson, Mississippi? Climate mitigation in Miami? Affordable housing? Medical care? A tax break for working people?

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"Only seven of the 27 entities that make up the Department of Defense received a clean bill of financial health (2022), representing 39% of the department’s $7 trillion in assets ."


In other words, 61% of $7 trillion is $4.27 trillion that could not be successfully audited. The $100 billion given so far by the US to Ukraine is then a) consistent with overall Pentagon practice; and b) pales in comparison to overall Pentagon malfeasance. What the Pentagon cannot account for in a single year is 42 times greater than the total amount given to Ukraine. And if the same proportion holds true for Ukraine, the 61% they cannot account for is $61 billion which is 1/72 of the total Pentagon blackhole (incidentally - is it really only "incidental" - the Navy auditors who at the time were researching the Pentagon budget were destroyed in the wing of the Pentagon which was directly hit by a US Scud (or other type) of missile on 9/11).

Ceterum autem censeo Civitates Foederatae Americae esse delendam.

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As ever, Chris Hedges, a well-structured analysis with all the supporting evidence any of us from our 50s onwards will be familiar with. And now that US with a Forced Posture Agreement in place from a compliant Australian government (A. Albanese, R Marles and P Wong as the central triumvirate) will do its best to make its little southern hemisphere military base "deputy sheriff" a proxy war space when it launches its attacks on China. Then we here in Australia will understand what it is like to be Ukrainians, Iraqis, Syrians, Palestinians, Yemenis, Nicaraguans et al. There are growing calls for the FPA to be repudiated - even as I write the Australian PM has flown from some cricket diplomacy in India with PM Modi to the US to sign deals for unneeded nuclear submarines taking hundreds of billions of dollars from our education and health and welfare budgets to service US shareholders of WMD companies. The Australian PM A Albanese is already bought by the US - and has given up on his promises to extract Julian Assange from US vengeance. It's all depressing, of course! Thanks, CH.

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Great first hand observations of US tyranny. The well inormed history of proxy wars was a hit in the gut

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What a great time to be a Democrat! You can belong to the party that supports the Ukraine conflict, use Zelensky-love va Putin-hate narratives to destroy political opposition... and then you can also criticize America for its hegemony and propensity to destroy other countries in proxy wars without sufficient justification.

Where is that cake that I can both have and eat too?

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To say the war has little to do with Ukranian freedom is with all due respect a gross overstatement. I am well aware of the history of US as well as Russian i perialistic proxy wars but its important to make distinctions between those examples raised by Chris and the war in Ukraine. My extended family in Germany has provided assistance to dozens of Ukranian refugees and to a person these refugees could care less about what they consider academic arguments about it being a proxy war or that the extension of NATO gave Russia no choice but to invade. They know that the US' reasons for support are not pure but they could care less. They just want help.

None of them believe that Russia is interested in a neutral Ukraine nor ever has been. Not one. Putin knows that a neutral Ukraine will inevitably be integrated into the western economic sphere. That's where the investment, technology and markets reside. Russia has very little to offer other than a kleptocratic modern day czarist government aligned with an extremely right wing orthodox church.

I despise war as much as anyone but at the same time I believe people have the right to self defense. The Vietnamese had the right to resist the French then the Americans. The Nicaraguans had the right to resist the contrast. The Polish, French, and Russians had the right to resist the Nazis.

When I read posts like this I wonder what exactly the alternatives are for the Ukranian people. I guess they could just do nothing and let the Russian army and Wagner thugs pillage and rape their way across the country. A ceasefire and negotiations sound great but one would need to extremely foolish to believe that Putin could be trusted even if Ukraine were to trade land for "peace".


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Chris, I submitted this comment on avoiding War and EMPIRE to your alma mater at "these 'TIMES' they are a-changing" -- which I seriously think they won't:

While Paul Kennedy's epochal work, "The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500 to 2000", was appropriate for past times, including The First World War of Empires, and the Second World War of Empires — but does not effectively align, comport, consequently, nor essentially lock us into the chains of long wave Kondratieff cycles, but instead could affirmatively and peacefully reach a moment of rapprochement, now, beyond 2000, and perhaps in our re-birthing of peaceful Democratic Socialism over Capitalist Cancer eight decades earlier, as if to fix a miracle of 'time-travel' might have occurred in 1944, ahead of 2024, had FDR's brilliant socialist VP, Henry Wallace succeeded FDR.

As in "Being There", "It will bloom in the Spring"

To avoid misunderstanding, it ought to be made clear at this point that the book is not dealing with, for example, the theory that major (or “systemic”) wars can be related to Kondratieff cycles of economic upturn and downturn. In addition, it is not centrally concerned with general theories about the causes of war, and whether they are likely to be brought about by “rising” or “falling” Great Powers. It is also not a book about theories of empire, and about how imperial control is effected (as is dealt with in Michael Doyle’s recent book Empires), or whether empires contribute to national strength.

Kennedy, Paul M.. The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers . Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

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Does Europe and others like Japan fear

“imperialistic” Russia as much as does Russia fear another fascist attack from the West? The fear of the other leads to offensive moves of conflict. And maybe leads to another world war.

It is a dangerous game with much hubris played by the US.

Countries are cajoled into the mindset of the US, by old IOU’s, propaganda, false flag events, threaten sanctions, and fear of others.

So far the major winner of the proxy war with Russia are the military arms suppliers and energy corporations, benefiting by providing natural gas at exorbitant prices to Europe, instead of Russia.

One of the dangers for the US and maybe the end of the US Empire may be the fall of the dollar and petro-dollar as the world reserve currency. Certainly countries hit with economic sanctions by the US realize how vulnerable they are and will look for a solution, maybe the Chinese yuan?? Did the threat of Middle East countries looking to ditch the US petro-dollar lead to their devastation by US hegemony and wars?? I have often wondered why the US attacked Iraq.

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