The Irresponsibility of Small Nations
Paul Craig Roberts
After falsely accusing Russia of violating the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), Washington unilaterally repudiated the treaty. Thus did the US military/security complex rid itself of the landmark agreement achieved by Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev that defused the Cold War.
The INF Treaty was perhaps the most important of all of the arms control agreements achieved by American 20th century presidents and now abandoned in the 21st century by US neoconservative governments. The treaty removed the threat of Russian missiles against Europe and the threat of European-based US missiles to Russia. The importance of the treaty is due to its reduction of the chance of accidental nuclear war. Warning systems have a history of false alarms. The problem of US missiles on Russia’s border is that they leave no time for reflection or contact with Washington when Moscow receives a false alarm. Considering the extreme irresponsibility of US governments since the Clinton regime in elevating tensions with Russia, missiles on Russia’s border leaves Russia’s leadership with little choice but to push the button when an alarm sounds.
That Washington intends to put missiles on Russia’s border and pulled out of the INF Treaty for this sole purpose is now obvious. Only two weeks after Washington pulled out of the treaty, Washington tested a missile whose research and development, not merely deployment, were banned under the treaty. If you think Washington designed and produced a new missile in two weeks you are not intelligent enough to be reading this column. While Washington was accusing Russia, it was Washington who was violating the treaty. Perhaps this additional act of betrayal will teach the Russian leadership that it is stupid and self-destructive to trust Washington about anything. Every country must know by now that agreements with Washington are meaningless.
Surely the Russian government understands that there are only two reasons for Washington to put missiles on Russia’s border: (1) to enable Washington to launch a pre-emptive nuclear strike that leaves Russia no response time, or (2) to enable Washington to threaten such a strike, thus coercing Russia to Washington’s will. Clearly, one or the other of these reasons is of sufficient importance to Washington for Washington to risk a false alarm setting off a nuclear war.