Scott Ritter, Mark Sleboda and Tony Kevin joined CN Live! to discuss recent events, the current situation and the future of the conflict in Ukraine. Watch the replay.
In Moscow: Mark Sleboda, IR & Security Analyst & U.S. Navy veteran in Nuclear Engineering; in New York State: Scott Ritter, former U.S. Marine Corps intelligence officer & U.N. weapons inspector; and in Canberra, Australia: Tony Kevin, Ret. Australian ambassador to Poland & diplomat in Moscow. Your hosts: Elizabeth Vos and Joe Lauria. Produced by Cathy Vogan. (The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of Consortium News or CN Live!)
The war in Ukraine began in 2014 as a civil conflict when Russian-speakers in the east resisted a coup that overthrew a democratically-elected president. The post-coup state then launched a war against the resisters for eight years, a war which Russia entered nine months ago on Feb. 24.
It was an expansion of the fighting that could have easily been prevented. A peace accord was never implemented by the Western-backed Kiev regime. Instead NATO armed and trained Ukrainian forces that included extremist groups. which early this year began amassing at the conflict line with the east, poised for an offensive, prompting Russia to intervene. Peace treaties Russia presented to the U.S. and NATO last December, which would have seen NATO deployments of troops and missiles in Eastern Europe rolled back, were ignored, even as Russia spoke of a technical-military response.
The U.S. got the invasion it wanted and needed. Without it, it could not have launched its economic, information and proxy war designed to “weaken” Russia and return it to the servile state of the 1990s. Make no mistake. This is a U.S. war against Russia. Ukraine is simply the stage on which it is being acted.
However, the war is not going according to U.S. plans. The economic war, intended to bring down the Russian government, has backfired, with dire economic consequences and growing popular discontent in the West instead.
The information war is being lost outside of territories controlled by the West – which comprises the vast majority of humanity. And the war on the ground is not being won.
But the war hasn’t gone according to Russian plans either. Moscow sought negotiations with Ukraine almost immediately upon entering the conflict. In March they had a deal in which Ukraine would remain neutral and Crimea would be recognized as Russian and Donbass as independent. But Western leaders, wanting to bleed Russia, stopped it.
A restrained invasion, insofar as invasions can be restrained, is now on the verge of a major Russian offensive. It is being preceded by widespread Russian strikes against power infrastructure, raising troubling questions about the effect on civilians.
Despite continuing propaganda that Ukraine is winning the war, Western leaders know what they are facing: freezing Ukrainians and Europeans and the looming Russian attack. This has led to talks about talks to end the war, but is it now too late?
Is Russia committed to reabsorbing all of Catherine the Great’s imperial conquests in Ukraine or will keeping Ukraine out of NATO, recognition of Crimea and Donbass as part of Russia and withdrawal of NATO’s forward deployments of men and missiles in Eastern Europe still be enough for Russia?
Is the U.S. and NATO still committed to a long war in the vain hope that it will bring down the Russian government? — Joe Lauria, editor-in-chief, Consortium News.
The ‘west’ certainly does know what it wants: the whole Eurasian land mass, which only a balkanised Russia can offer. The balkanisation of Russia is an aim no different from colonialism’s and imperialism’s ‘great game’ for the last three centuries. And a ‘cold peace’ isn’t at all incompatible with denatoisaton and denazification of the Ukraine — that would still mean Russian victory.
The prospect of the Kiev regime press-ganging Russophones into the military, while its aim may be to confuse or demoralise the Russians, it may also provide the critical mass and a spur for conscripts to turn the guns the other way against the nazi enforcers and officers in the Ukrainian military; and to fraternisation with the Russian forces. Zelensky and his nazi/NATO minders may again be biting off more than they can chew.
I was very impressed by everyone involved. Having Tony Kevin on the show, highlighted that there are sane people in the federal government in some parts of the world and does not limit themselves to annoying rhetoric. Scott is a great military analyst and Mark is a great source of how the Russian people view this entire situation. There is much to comment on, but I did want to say that the rebuilding of the Ukraine after a Russian conquest, could come in the form of a Marshall Plan, but instead of it being rooted in U.S. banks, it could be rooted in Beijing. It would be in the best interest of both nations. A strong rebuilding of the Ukraine, would go a long way to convincing Europeans to distance themselves from the American aggressive military model.
Tony Kevin is a retired diplomat. He is no longer in the federal government.
Thank you. So much to take away from this discussion. I despair of finding any serious reporting in our media…..being old enough to recall news in newspapers and even some news on the TV screen.
During NATO’s war on Yugoslavia, bombing my friends and relations in Serbia I marched around on street corners carrying anti war signs and most cars passing honked in support….. no real purpose of course, but seemed the thing to do. But we collected a file cabinet full of articles from our newspapers, and various French and English papers with serious reporting about that war. We carried large antiwar signs…. outside public buildings, too. Probably be arrested today.
Now, there is nothing to see in ANY news outlets or papers which resembles honest reporting. Of course not on the TV screen but
I will not send some of my very good hearted friends to this site so they can be better informed….. they accuse me of being caught up by “conspiracy theories” for saying that this war is made in USA
Much appreciate this discussion. Engaging and informative, as always. Thank you Consortium News for this and for your continued dedication to truth finding. Our sources of knowledge and truth finding are diminishing, as you well know. Thank you for your diligence.
Great discussion. Congrats to CN!
We should look at the proxy war to weaken Russia as an opening battle in the war between China and its allies versus the US and its allies.
The allies of the US are the nations of the colonial West, white nations to be frank, the G7.
The allies of China are now Russia and the nations of the Global South.
This is the first battle of the rising China/Global South, the overwhelming majority of humanity, against US/Western hegemony.
Which side are you on?
The US will go on fighting as long as others pay the price for it. Wars are very profitable. The oil giants are earning huge profits, they are part of the MIC, while the people pay for it in blood and tears, and money.
I found it strange that Scott Ritter said he would give his life to prevent the defeat of the American nation, despite believing that ‘America is evil’. Perhaps he could clarify his view of patriotism.
Why is it only Europeans who (may) have the wits to rebel against tyranny? Is it because they have suffered from wars in Europe? Americans would certainly become politically active if there were an attack on the ‘Homeland’. In fact, all it would take is a return to the draft, which woke up my generation to the horror of Vietnam.
Given how public opinion changed on The Vietnam War (at that time under the smothering doctrine known as “the domino theory”), and how opinion changed regarding the phony WMD ploy and the Iraq war into seeing it as a “fiasco,” and falseness in all the other wars of recent decades, it seems inevitable condemnation of this hideous atrocity in Ukraine, with all its duplicity rationalized under “globalism” and “full spectrum dominance,” is also forthcoming at some point. Probing into the history and the facts, as with this discussion, is extraordinarily important and a valuable teaching, but we also need to spend time and analysis on how to get after the war-mongering bastards responsible for these atrocities, and put them away.
Wide-ranging, probing, no-nonsense discussion. Thank you.
Haven’t listened to all of this yet. Tons of gems, thoughts, ideas that resonate true; but just like to say a war economy is no way to save a planet, a unique world in a black and unknown universe. Since I stand most Wednesdays on a corner by our courthouse, will make a sign. Have many, but like to keep the potential troops entertained with new ideas to them and keep trying to bring them along since I’ve little other voice in this country. It’s public education in its rawest form. Wish all the teachers of the world would break done their walls before teaching our children. Wish all the real teachers of the world made signs and stood on street corners, at least occasionally. Some people honk and wave at you there too.
Oh, Mark, some people were upset alright when our European leaders went all out for war!
The EU was about no more war in Europe, we are now actively encouraging a war. The EU was supposed to be about democracy and transparency and respect for minorities – we are now supporting a regime that bans the opposition, is a world champion in corruption and is suppressing the rights of the Russian speakers and now killing them.
However, try to voice that in today’s EU – you will be burnt like a witch, metaphorically speaking.
I am ashamed to be a citizen of the EU.
Mark wants you to starve to death. His words.
Not to death but just until they overturn the current elites/leadership.
The US originally expected Ukraine to collapse quickly. Boris Johnson has admitted that to the Western press.
The plan was to fight a long insurgency in Ukraine, to bleed Russia, in the same form as Afghanistan and later Syria.
This was always something horrible for Ukraine. The West did not care. It just went for it.
Now the West might be forced back to doing what it originally planned. The real issue will become, how can Russia defeat that long insurgency still intended by the West?
I am torn between the views of the speakers as to the possible outcome of all this. However several things seem clear and they are all tragic. 1) People will die, mostly Ukrainians, who are being sacrificed by the west and in particular the U.S. 2) As an American it is very clear to me that most Americans, including our government don’t understand the culture and history of the Russians, or the Ukrainians for that matter. By continually underestimating the Russians and taking the high moral ground, the U.S. is creating an atmosphere of unreality. 3) Lastly, by supporting neo nazi Banderites in the Ukraine the U.S. is now completely morally bankrupt, no matter what the outcome of the war. There will be blowback. I agree with Tony Kevin.
Excellent discussion overall, thanks guys!
My thought is that the US was testing how fast and through what channels it would be discovered that is was not a Russian bomb. Zelensky was most likely following instructions from a US intelligence official and the continued denial would also be via instruction, to his own demise. When will the world wake up and understand the US is no one’s friend and everyone’s enemy with the exception of the 1% globalist cabal. These people think up the most diabolical plans to grab resources and stage coups. Had to read a book on economics to find out the real reasons Qaddafi was killed after his motorcade was hit by NATO planes. He wanted to nationalize Libya’s resources and didn’t go through the World Bank which is notorious for pauperizing countries who depend on them. He turned instead to China for loans to make his country independent of the murderous, genocidal West.
Meanwhile “blah, blah, blah” as one global hero says about the real crisis facing humanity. That “blah, blah, blah” extends to worries about the Ukraine war as it seemingly expands in one economic and social form or another as Europe slowly withers under American control which, believe it or not, is silently supported by an ambitious China despite its mounting environmental problems at home and which is also mostly blind to the real crisis facing all of us. The world needs more people of all ages like Greta.
what’s the beautiful music before the start, please ?
I, too, would like to know. Thank you for asking. It is special . . . .
Thankyou everyone for an interesting debate. “The collective lunacy of the west” certainly is true, as Scott noted. I believe the initial fervour for the support of the ukraine is waning in the uk. So many strikes now as a result of the “lunacy”. And so many uk families not renewing their “contracts” to house a ukrainian family. It will undoubtedly be an interesting winter.
Did Russia plan for limited op and negotiation s or was it a hope with contingencies allowed for?
Many areas of Bloody British colonial conquest and suppression. Am always surprised they don’t hate the British.
Good point AIWonderland. I agree.
A good leader would do their best to preserve their country and their people, and not betray them so heinously as Zelensky has done.
Zelinskyy is just the latest in a line of “Ukrainian leaders” since 2010 or before. This war is NATO/USA making use of Ukraine as a battleground to destroy Russia as a great power and influence in the world. The large number of countries already supporting Russia’s sovereignty, self-defence and its position on multipolarity comprises up to 85% of the world’s people. The USA’s self-declared “rules-based international order” (US hegemony!) must not be allowed to displace international law, which Russia, China and most of the global south are trying to preserve.
Amen, so true.
Can a man groomed and installed by a billionaire, who couldn’t even speak Ukrainian when he came into office, really be considered any sort of leader?