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Long Read of the Week: On your marks! . . . Get set! . . .

Today’s selection of useful screeds is Gory to Ukraine – by Curtis Yarvin – Gray Mirror

Gory to Ukraine

"He wanted to eat that frank."

Jun 20
I used to think that starting a proxy civil war in Russia was insane. It was insane. But I would have poured cold water on the idea that anyone in DC would invent the idea of inciting a direct conflict between NATO and Russia—which appears to be what this Lithuania thing is. Certainly, if the State Department did not want Lithuania to be blockading Kaliningrad, Lithuania would not be blockading Kaliningrad.

This is “kick the dog until it bites” (perhaps the core weapon of US foreign policy) at a truly incredible level: the level of direct military conflict between NATO and Russia. In for a penny, in for a pound. The US in June 2022 is every bit as much at war with Russia as, in June 1941, it was with Germany.

The temptation of Putin is, like the temptation of Hitler (which brought about his strategically suicidal declaration of war against the US), to recognize the reality of war by responding with direct military action. After which, nuclear escalation is already a matter of time—have the Russians shown much compunction in strikes against cities?

It would be ironic but typical if the same prestigious agency, the predictable and often predicted result of whose decisions (starting with the completely pointless decision, really as bad as the decision to collect all the bat coronaviruses then try to engineer them to be more dangerous, to expand NATO to the east) was this war, would in the end bring the hard hand of war down on America itself.

But this outcome suddenly feels much less unlikely than it has since I was a child in the Cold War. This Lithuania foolishness absolutely has to be stopped. It does not seem utterly implausible that Putin might take the bait—and then facilis descensus Averno.

While my guess is that he is wise enough to avoid it, I don’t like Putin and I don’t like the fate of the world resting on his wisdom. I expect better of my State Department, which exists to serve the interests of the American people—not of Navalny, Zelensky and Pussy Riot—not of Russians, and not of Ukrainians.

However, we as Americans must be ashamed of what we have done to the Ukraine. It is exactly what we did to Poland at the start of WWII—we baited our own dog into a fight, always an easy enough trick, then watched as it got ground into inevitable meat. Good doggie! Slava Ukraini!

Think about how many people across the world have had lunch on Ukraine’s tab—had enjoyed professional opportunities which would not exist without this war. When I stayed in Setubal, Portugal last week—PCP territory, they told me—there was a blue and yellow banner on the overpass over the little N10, “Stop War! Stop Putin!”—indeed. The best way to stop a war is to win it.

And in this endearingly innocent manner, official Ukrainian nationalist kitsch is all over the world. Imagine being able to tell the difference between good (Ukrainian) and bad (Hungarian) nationalism! Anyone who takes the party line literally is in for long hours counting the angels on the head of a pin.

On nationalism
Nationalism is not good or bad. It is just a flavor of narrative. This narrative can be used in a sincere way, or an insincere way. Insincere narratives are not necessarily bad, but they need to be approached with great caution.

The government of Hungary, a nationalist government, wants to make Hungary less like other countries in the world. The government of Ukraine, a nationalist government, wants to make Ukraine more like other countries in the world. Sinn Fein, a nationalist party in Ireland, whose name means “Ourselves Alone,” wants to govern Ireland exactly like (a “nice” part of) Connecticut. This does not make one of these things good and the other bad—it arouses Orwellian curiosity about the use of words.

This curiosity is resolved when we find that “good” nationalism, for the last 250 years, always corresponds to social connectivity with the Anglo-American upper class, and therefore its institutions of government (such as the State Department); whereas “bad” nationalism corresponds to disconnection from this class and its institutions.

The Irish revolutionary cause has been aligned with the aristocratic Anglo-American left since Gladstone was a little boy. For this tendency to come to fruition, at this level of historical absurdity, after two centuries, is just the kind of joke history likes to play.

Again, “nationalism” is just a propaganda trope. It is about as meaningful as the color of your lightsaber. Luke would still be a good guy if he picked up Vader’s red saber, and Vader would still be able to cut Luke’s arm off with Luke’s blue saber. It is best to abandon these empty formalities and focus on the realities of power beneath.

Kick the dog until it bites, then shoot it
The destructive mechanism of US foreign policy is to ally with the enlightened upper class, and incite them to revolution—or even to aggression against its enemies. In the past this almost always worked out, since America’s cool friends almost always won. Looking backwards, betting on America looked like a daring but prescient bet.

But now, the Current Thing is a losing war. America has never lost a war that her elite really believed in. And the Ukrainians knew it. Now they are getting ground into meat—because, to keep their jobs, none of these Americans even needs to win. In fact, if they won, a lot of their jobs would go away.

The outcome in which Russia defeats the Ukraine, and then the war ends, does not fit any script that anyone has. Then America’s diplomats—then America’s media—then all of enlightened America itself—would feel like losers. We can’t have that. Well… we got a bit of it with the Arab Spring. But this Ukraine thing…

Bait and hook
The Ukraine thing was ten times more Current than the Arab Spring. Granted, the Arab Spring killed a lot more people—but it had a lot more time to do it. I’m guessing that the Ukraine war has only killed 50,000 people or so. But it ain’t over yet, is it?

Imagine making a decision between A and B, when you receive a premonition that if you choose A, 50,000 people will die. What will happen if you choose B? You don’t know. But you choose A. You are like: B could be something worse.

What would have been worse? I can imagine the worst-case scenario of B, not arming the Ukraine: millions of tracksuited, squatting Slavs, ruled by a completely different gang of oligarchs with expensive watches. Our oligarchs are probably better spoken and better educated, and generally more intelligent. Of course, if after 50,000 people die, the nasty, boring, ill-spoken oligarchs win anyway…

But we like our oligarchs. Obviously, the better they speak “nationalism,” the better. Slava Ukraini! Glory to Ukraine! And what Ukraine gets is glory… without the L. As they used to say: “World War II… was it good for the Jews?”

It was certainly not good for the Poles! The Pied Piper of Hamelin had nothing on Foggy Bottom. US diplomacy in the last century is simply the grooming of nations.

I have pointed this out to Americans, very sweet glory-loving Americans, and heard: but this is what they want. Not even glory but the chance at glory! Similarly, if you feed your dog a hotdog with a treble-hooked Rapala lure inside, he wanted to eat that frank. It is unfair to characterize humans as animals; Ukraine is more like our little brother.

Somehow, in a world which gets more American every year, in which “global” is no more than a euphemism for “American,” well-meaning Americans are unaware of how completely American fashion dictates the fashions of all our little brother. If we tell little Stepan we are going to jump off a cliff, he will jump off first! And off he jumped. Then, things didn’t go so well with his parachute. But at least we got the story.

The hilarious ending
I can sense an ending coming on and I don’t like it.

The ending is that Washington, not liking to lose, doubles down by picking a direct fight with Russia—for example, by doing exactly what it is doing now with Lithuania. And Putin, foolishly, takes the bait. Folks, I hate to exaggerate, but this is actually kind of a realistic pathway to World War III.

Why is this hilarious? It is hilarious in the same sense that it is hilarious when the elephant, fleeing the spear-wielding gladiators, escapes the arena and goes rampaging through the stands. For a quarter-millennium, Anglo-American foreign policy has been conducted in the spirit of the Colosseum—possibly, even, the Aztecs. It has certainly been gory! And now…

Did not Maistre explain that the French Revolution was God’s punishment on the head of the liberal Anglophile philosophes who made the Revolution happen? But the Enlightenment in France was only a quarter-century old, not a quarter-millennium. God’s patience is long… and his sense of humor is infinite. And infinitely cruel. Keep your “go bag” packed—and make sure you have somewhere to go.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • ghostsniper June 28, 2022, 11:15 AM

    duck n cover

  • KCK June 28, 2022, 1:01 PM

    Just wait. Kaliningrad will be asking to join NATO, next.

    • Anonymous June 29, 2022, 6:34 AM

      Where’d you pick that up, grandpa Gell-Mann? One of your well researched sources? NYT, WaPo, CNN, or People Magazine? Either way, it originates at the same source. Keep it up and Vicki Nuland might send you a new 8×10 glossy.

      • jiminalaska June 29, 2022, 11:00 AM

        Not particularly interesting, Anony mouse, but hey, I read it anyway and you had your say.

      • KCK June 29, 2022, 4:12 PM

        Yawwwwn. Scratches pits.

        Don’t you suppose some people originate their own ideas? Based on, you know, knowledge?

  • Randall Bridges June 28, 2022, 1:38 PM

    Here it is… Quick, Duck! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWqlmow-G0U

  • Gordon Scott June 28, 2022, 4:54 PM

    I will admit I cannot figure out who’s winning where, much less who the players are and what the stakes are. I can see that if Russia cuts the rest of Ukraine off from the Black Sea, it’s a serious problem for Ukraine. It’s a problem that can mostly be solved by railroads, but then those have to go through other countries. Yeah, but Turkey controls access to the Black Sea . . . .

    Still, I can see that Lithuania should not be dicking around with Russia. And we are obligated to come to Lithuania’s aid, should Russian invade.

    France and the UK were obligated to aid Poland in 1939, also. They had no realistic means to do so, other than invading Germany in retaliation. There was no way they would. They weren’t even as ready as they were in May 1940, and they definitely weren’t ready when Germany stormed westward.

    And the French and UK diplomats tried to make Poland see reason. Poland knew they would not get help. But they demanded that France and the UK recommit, which they did, and the Poles refused to budge in the slightest way, in terms of giving a little to the Germans.

    And then Molotov and Von Ribbentrop announced a little agreement. And everyone including Ray Charles could see what that would mean.

    • Zorost June 29, 2022, 9:39 AM

      “we are obligated to come to Lithuania’s aid”

      Not really. Who obligates us to go to their aid? We do. We can just as easily obligate ourselves to not go to their aid. This wouldn’t even be a violation of the NATO treaty, as it doesn’t obligate nations to go to war to defend another member.

      “Article 5
      The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

      Any such armed attack and all measures taken as a result thereof shall immediately be reported to the Security Council. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security .”

      The key phrase is “such action as it deems necessary”, which is meaningless. If Russia invaded another member, the US could ‘deem it necessary’ to do nothing.

  • Flyover June 28, 2022, 6:28 PM

    “I expect better of my State Department, which exists to serve the interests of the American people…”

    That’s a pretty darn naive statement, right there.

    • Tree Mike June 29, 2022, 6:39 AM

      No shit. Tree Mike

  • Ol’guy i’m told June 28, 2022, 8:03 PM

    Well…In my time here on the Marble and my say…40yrs of actually paying attention…

    1-I don’t consider Panama or Grenada, WARS or Wins. I DO Consider
    Them the equivelent of Assaulting Kindergardens…so, they dont count.
    2-We have picked fights with “Mentaly Handicapped” Children and Failed for decades.
    3- We aint done Squat Right(Won Squat). Period.

    But if the Big Firecrakers get lit, so be it.

    As long as DC Is Wiped from the Face of the Earth I’m good.

    They have done NOTHING Right, Constitutional or Good in my Time. It’s just another International Criminal Organization(S) and hangout.

    They HATE The People, that is Obvious.

    IMO of course.

    • John the River June 29, 2022, 4:42 AM

      I’ve been saying that if the inevitable first Iranian bomb goes off in Washington DC…
      … that we give the Mullahs a Mulligan.

      • Mark Matis June 29, 2022, 4:59 AM

        And if the second goes off in the Big Craphole, we cheer wildly!

      • Fletcher Christian June 29, 2022, 6:32 AM

        I disagree. Entirely. The Orcs have already had two major freebies, with 40,000+ others with varying body counts since then. If they really do light one in DC or Manhattan (or London, for that matter) I think that in the future people ought to read something like this:

        At the last, when all other means had been exhausted, the Free Peoples grew weary of endless war, and drew upon the secrets that their wise men had revealed and their most marvellous artificers had embodied in devices; devices that had lain, unused and sleeping, in their lairs, and in the steel sharks swimming all over the world in the lightless deep, for three score years and more.

        And in that hour did the devices awaken, and the clouds of agony and vengeance did rise above the land of the Enemy, and the fires of Heaven did consume the Enemy, and their shadows were set in the stones and the ash of their burning rose high into Heaven and then fell, poisoning the land it fell upon, and the Enemy’s holy places were no more, and there was an end to seven score decades of war, and peace was upon the Earth – for a time.

  • Mark Matis June 29, 2022, 4:58 AM

    Yet none dare mention the Jews, lest their post be deleted.
    A significant majority of Jews across the West – 70-75% – yearn for the “good old days” of their Messiahs – Lenin and Stalin. They had NO problem with Russia invading Ukraine when it was done by their Messiah Joe Stalin! That should be sufficient proof that Putin is not Communist!

  • KCK June 29, 2022, 5:54 PM

    Biden has decided to post 100,000 GIs in Europe going forward. Mostly in Poland, it seems. I haven’t gotten enough info from the corrupt news, yet. One aspect of this is that we deploy, retrieve, deploy, retrieve, troops on constant rotations. This will be a larger, permanent base that replaces the constant coming and going, and going and coming (and always too…Madeline Kahn joke). Greta Thunberg will be happy with the reduced carbon footprint of the rotations.

    Stop with the “provocation” shit. Please. My butt hurts from all of the blame tripe. Who provokes whom? You tell me, but bring some reasoned data, pilgrim.

    Shit. Fukn Biden might turn out to be my fave president ever. There’s a meme where Biden is doing 80# curls with a dumb bell and he’s on the line with the Pope. “Yeah, I ended abortion. They still think I’m senile, Holy Father”.

    Admit it. You have no idea what’s happening. Your information pipeline has all been delivered, and now that fukr has run dry. No more info for you. I hope you spent your life, up til now, learning a bit of history, a bit of theology, and learning how to think. HOW – all caps.

  • Rollory June 29, 2022, 8:20 PM

    The more I read primary sources about the lead-up to WW2, the more apparent it becomes that Yarvin/Moldbug is a disingenuous liar.