"CrossTalk Bullhorns, HOME EDITION: Biden’s war"
RT.com (March 28, 2022)
While visiting Poland, Joe Biden said out loud what many in Russia have long believed: NATO expansion eastward has always been about forced regime change in Russia. And Ukraine has been at the center of that strategy. When people tell you who they are, believe them.
Peter Lavelle: "People call it a gaffe, George. But it wasn't a gaffe. He actually said exactly what he thinks, what his administration thinks. Putin must go. We heard this from an administration that he worked for in the past, the Obama administration, where 'Assad must go.' So the mask has fallen off. They have no interest in ending this conflict in Ukraine. And the Ukrainians are going to pay a very heavy price for hubris."
1:43 George Szamuely: "Yes. It was a very chilling address by Biden. Not only did he make that comment at the end -- Putin cannot remain in power -- but the whole tone was so belligerent, so aggressive. If you compare Ronald Reagan at his most aggressive, his speech in London in 1982 when he talked about the evil empire. Biden's address was more ferocious than anything Ronald Reagan said at that time. And it was quite chilling. And what was also chilling was that he said this is going to go on for many years, even for decades. So he is essentially mobilizing Europe and the United States for a long, protracted Cold War cum Hot War against Russia. And, of course, he doesn't really justify any of that, why any of this is necessary, other than Russia is evil. . . ."
3:35 Peter Lavelle: "... like the Popes of centuries ago, he called for a crusade. That's essentially what he has done here. Xavier, the concept of war, it's a military conflict. How you get there. A declaration of war. Then there is the end of war. You have a surrender. Kind of a World War II model. You don't have that anymore. There is a state of war going on right now, hybrid, it crosses every single sector. And, plus, with the confiscation and freezing of Russian central bank assets. That's a fiduciary matter that is usually never touched. They've touched it this time. So it's full-out, full throated conflict. And it's not going to end until, apparently, one side is vanquished. That's what it sounds like to me."
4:23 Xavier Moreau: "In my opinion, Biden lives in a Zuckerberg metaverse . Because, actually, he is losing the war. The U.S. lost the war the first time in 2008 in Georgia. The lost the war against Bashar al Assad when Russia decided to support Bashar al Assad. And now they live in this metaverse where the Russian economy is weak, the Russian army is weak, the Ukrainian army is strong and will defeat the Russian army. But that's not the case. It's completely different. And what I'm very surprised is that Biden can declare such a war on an economic point of view, from a military point of view, but he has no chance, actually, to win it. So, yes, he lives in a parallel world.
5:20 "But he is not the only one. Emmanuel Macron, for instance, made a declaration two days ago and he said the same thing. The Russian economy is about to go bankrupt. But it's completely false. And the Russian army is about to win this war and its economy will be, in my opinion, will be reinforced, will use the sanctions to find new markets, new providers, new opportunities. So, again, the western elites live in another world."
6:01 Peter Lavelle: "Yes, George, it's almost a fantasy world that we're talking about here. Before Biden's big announcement of a new Cold War -- we'll come up with our own new term here on Crosstalk -- with Russian officials coming out and saying that the first phase of their operation in Ukraine has come to an end. What I find very interesting about that -- and you and I have talked elsewhere about this is that the Russian political and military elites don't really talk much about what they're doing, unlike what you would get a blow-by-blow, second-by-second Gulf War or something like that. The Russians are really quite demure about it. And it makes one think about what the next step is because 'Russia's losing the war! They're stalled!' All this stuff here. When there's no evidence of it whatsoever. There's a built-in assumption that they actually know what the strategy is. But they certainly don't."
6:53 George Szamuely: "The story that Russia was losing the war was put out on Day One. London announced: 'Oh, yes. Russia is losing the war.' 'Putin was expecting to win this within 24 hrs.' How on earth did London know this? And why would Russia assume that Ukraine, population 46 million, armed forces the size of 260,000 -- huge army -- particiularly one that has been trained, replenished for years and years by NATO, why would they think it's all going to be already over in 24 hours? It was never explained, but they created a narrative that Russia is losing. And from then on they just repeated 'Russia is losing. Russia is losing' 'The Russian offensive has stalled.' And so, what will happen is that at some point Russia will announce that 'We have completed our operations,' There aren't going to be any negotiations. What the United States, NATO is telling Zelenski: 'Don't negotiate. Don't waste your time, you're winning, we're going to keep helping you.' So there won't be any negotiatins and at some point Russia will announce: 'It's over. We have achieved what we wanted to achieve.' And at that moment the Western media will repeat, 'That's it. Russia lost. Russia has failed.' 'This is a catastrophic decision by Putin.' 'Putin will be overthrown in no time at all because the military elite will be very dissatisfied with what Putin has accomplished.' But I think that, as Xavier said, Russia is accomplishing, slowly but surely, everything that it is doing. There are no Ukrainian counter-offensive. Ukraine isn't achieving anything militarily. A little skirmish here and there. They destroy an armored personnel carrier or something. That isn't a counter-offensive. That isn't winning the war. And I think that Russia will achieve what it wants, which I expect is a buffer state, a Novorossia, and Poland can have what is left over."
9:04 Peter Lavelle: " ... "
9:53 Xavier Moreau: " ... and he said on the 5th of March, this is the current proposal. But there is a date you have to respect. But in my opinion, the Russian demands are changing now. And if you look at what they do in the cities they completely control, in Kherson, in Mariupol, etc., they put in place a new administration. And I read that in the Kherson region, they will start to use the Ruble in April. In my opinion, the Russian war aims have changed. Because, again, the thing is that Putin can change his mind. But when Putin says something, as he did on the 5th of March, if you don't accept quickly our demands, then our demands will change [i.e, get worse for you]. And so they are changing, and this is the complete fault of Zelensky and Zelensky's sponsors that they can't accept and when Russia says something like Lavrov and Gerasimov and Shoigu and Putin telling [the Ukrainians] if you start this ethnic cleansing we will react. But they don't want to listen. It's too late."
12:04 Peter Lavelle: ". . . What does Putin want? Just go to the Kremlin website, or TASS. You can take it with a grain of salt, but it's there in black and white. ... "
12:17 George Szamuely: " . . ."