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azadi

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The US Congress has approved sanctions against companies, which are working on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which will transport natural gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea. The German government condemns the US sanctions against Nord Stream 2.
The US sanctions against Nord Stream 2 are unacceptable. USA is no friend of Germany and the EU. The EU ought to become an independent geopolitical actor. That's why I support closer European military integration. The EU must cease to be subservient to USA. 
https://www.dw.com/en/us-senate-approves-nord-stream-2-russia-germany-pipeline-sanctions/a-51711980


InVinoVeritas

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I think this might be to Finland's benefit in the long run. Go Yankeeland!
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Wessexman

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It seems a bizarre choice by Germany to build this pipeline. Reliance on Russia is a bad idea.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
It seems a bizarre choice by Germany to build this pipeline. Reliance on Russia is a bad idea.

Russophobia is far weaker in Germany than in Britain. I support friendly relations between Germany and Russia. In addition, we are used to relying on Russian natural gas, and Russian natural gas is cheap. The USA want Germany to import liquefied natural gas from USA, but liquefied natural gas from USA is far more expensive and far less environmentally friendly than Russian natural gas. The environmentalist movement is very strong in Germany. The Greens obtained 20 % of the votes in the European Parliament election in Germany in May 2019, while the SPD (the social democratic party of Germany) obtained 15% of the votes and the CDU/CSU (the conservative/Christian democratic ruling party of Germany) obtained 28 % of the votes.
Wessexman

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It's not Russophobia to remember that Putin's Russia is opportunistic and not to be trusted. Relying on it for a lot of your fuel is a bad idea.

I'm no expert, but I doubt that that American natural gas is much more environmentally harmful than Russian gas. Fracking, in particular, has been one of the main reasons America has been able to lower it's C02 omissions. Apparently the Germans have banned fracking:

https://m.dw.com/en/germany-largely-bans-fracking-with-new-laws/a-37510063

I'm something of a conservative environmentalist myself, but the radicalism and plain ability to shoot themselves in the foot that many Greens display is a source of amazement to me.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
It's not Russophobia to remember that Putin's Russia is opportunistic and not to be trusted. Relying on it for a lot of your fuel is a bad idea.

I'm no expert, but I doubt that that American natural gas is much more environmentally harmful than Russian gas. Fracking, in particular, has been one of the main reasons America has been able to lower it's C02 omissions. Apparently the Germans have banned fracking:

https://m.dw.com/en/germany-largely-bans-fracking-with-new-laws/a-37510063

I'm something of a conservative environmentalist myself, but the radicalism and plain ability to shoot themselves in the foot that many Greens display is a source of amazement to me.

Claiming, that Russia is not to be trusted is wrong. Russia is a rational and predictable geopolitical actor, which staunchly defends its national interests. In addition, many Germans fondly remember Russia allowing German reunification. 
Wessexman

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Why do your responses so often just make no logical sense?

Being rational and predictable in defending their perceived national interest (though here we must remember it is Putin and his cronies whose interests are assumed to be that of Russia) is not the same as being trustworthy. In fact, Russia is predictably untrustworthy. Putin's Russia serves its own interest, which it sees as giving it a right to dominate a traditional area around it. It obviously isn't trustworthy. It is entirely amoral and Machiavellian and has no scruples about what it perceives as its interests. It has meddled in its neighbours plenty and used its energy exports as leverage.

To treat Russia today as akin to the Soviets Union is silly, as is the West wishing to meddle in that region of the world. But thinking of Putin's Russia as anything but a corrupt, opportunistic kleptocracy is as bad. Your reverence for thugs and gangsters, and sometimes worse, is concerning.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
Why do your responses so often just make no logical sense?

Being rational and predictable in defending their perceived national interest (though here we must remember it is Putin and his cronies whose interests are assumed to be that of Russia) is not the same as being trustworthy. In fact, Russia is predictably untrustworthy. Putin's Russia serves its own interest, which it sees as giving it a right to dominate a traditional area around it. It obviously isn't trustworthy. It is entirely amoral and Machiavellian and has no scruples about what it perceives as its interests. It has meddled in its neighbours plenty and used its energy exports as leverage.

To treat Russia today as akin to the Soviets Union is silly, as is the West wishing to meddle in that region of the world. But thinking of Putin's Russia as anything but a corrupt, opportunistic kleptocracy is as bad. Your reverence for thugs and gangsters, and sometimes worse, is concerning.

I admire Putin, because he is a conservative Russian nationalist, who supports Orthodox Christianity and is opposed to gay marriage and because he has reunified Crimea with Russia. The vast majority of the Crimeans wants to be part of Russia, and a lot of Russian imperial palaces is located in Crimea, including Livadia. Crimea being part of Ukraine is unacceptable to me because of the imperial palaces. In addition, Putin is a friend of Kurdistan. He accepted the Kurdish independence referendum in 2017, and he has prevented Turkish ethnic cleansing of the Syrian Kurds.
Germany has relied on Russia for natural gas since the 1980's. 
Wessexman

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We seem back to the litanies and irrelevancies: who cares what Crimeans think of him? His relations with Ed Davis's Near Eastern province also seem irrelevant at best.

Putin is a corrupt Kleptocrat, who has looted Russia, along with his friends. He resurrected a little of Russia's pride, but he hasn't done much more to actually benefit the country. His support for Orthodoxy is only for a Russian Orthodox Church subservient to his political agenda. He bears considerable responsibility for the current schism between Moscow and the Ecumenical Patriarch. He is murderous and Machiavellian. He may not be an Assad or Saddam level monster, nor like the monsters in Peking, but admirable he is not.

The point is not whether Russia has used its leverage over Germany, but whether it could. The problem may be, of course, that Russia relies a lot on Germany as a customer in a way it doesn't on, say, Ukraine (where it has used its control of gas to throw its weight around). But Russia still very well could very well use that power. The Americans clearly see that danger.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
We seem back to the litanies and irrelevancies: who cares what Crimeans think of him? His relations with Ed Davis's Near Eastern province also seem irrelevant at best.

Putin is a corrupt Kleptocrat, who has looted Russia, along with his friends. He resurrected a little of Russia's pride, but he hasn't done much more to actually benefit the country. His support for Orthodoxy is only for a Russian Orthodox Church subservient to his political agenda. He bears considerable responsibility for the current schism between Moscow and the Ecumenical Patriarch. He is murderous and Machiavellian. He may not be an Assad or Saddam level monster, nor like the monsters in Peking, but admirable he is not.

The point is not whether Russia has used its leverage over Germany, but whether it could. The problem may be, of course, that Russia relies a lot on Germany as a customer in a way it doesn't on, say, Ukraine (where it has used its control of gas to throw its weight around). But Russia still very well could very well use that power. The Americans clearly see that danger.

The Russian Federation is no utopia. Corruption is indeed widespread in Russia. But the Putin regime is far better than the Soviet regime, and I feel an ideological affinity to the Putin regime, because I'm an Eastern Christian, who likes authoritarian nationalism and cultural conservatism. 
Claiming, that Germany ought to fear Russian leverage over Germany is paranoid nonsense. Russia invading Germany is extremely unlikely to happen. Comparing Germany to Ukraine makes no sense. In addition, European integration prevents Russia from bullying the member states of the EU. Closer European military integration will make an equal partnership between the EU and Russia possible.
The US Congress and the British government treat the Russian Federation as akin to the Soviet Union, and some members of this forum, including DavidV, treat the Russian Federation as akin to the Soviet Union. That's utterly wrong.
The Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople supports closer relations with the Catholic Church, while the Moscow Patriarchate opposes closer relations with the Catholic Church. The Serbian and Bulgarian Orthodox Churches prefer Moscow to Constantinople.
Wessexman

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If some treat Russia as akin to the Soviet Union, which is true enough, you go far too far the other way, being a shill for Putin's kleptocracy. Russia is better than the Soviet Union, but it's still corrupt and amoral.

The point was not that Russia is likely to invade Germany or anything. I never made such a claim. But Putin is an opportunist and will push until he feels resistance. Germany and the Europeans shouldn't meddle in Eastern Europe, but they need to make it clear they will not allow Russia to go beyond its immediate vicinity. Relying on Russian gas could well end up as a weakness.

The ability of the Europeans to work together, absent American leadership, in terms of foreign affairs has been pretty baleful. Besides, I don't see what they'd gain by shutting put America, with which they have nothing in common. Sure, they should have their own voice, especially France and Germany, and not follow every neocon project of the Americans, but there's little reason to break off from the Western alliance.

The primary issue over which the schism seems to be being fought is mostly subtext for Russian nationalism and the interference of Putin. It's over Ukraine, I believe.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
If some treat Russia as akin to the Soviet Union, which is true enough, you go far too far the other way, being a shill for Putin's kleptocracy. Russia is better than the Soviet Union, but it's still corrupt and amoral.

The point was not that Russia is likely to invade Germany or anything. I never made such a claim. But Putin is an opportunist and will push until he feels resistance. Germany and the Europeans shouldn't meddle in Eastern Europe, but they need to make it clear they will not allow Russia to go beyond its immediate vicinity. Relying on Russian gas could well end up as a weakness.

The ability of the Europeans to work together, absent American leadership, in terms of foreign affairs has been pretty baleful. Besides, I don't see what they'd gain by shutting put America, with which they have nothing in common. Sure, they should have their own voice, especially France and Germany, and not follow every neocon project of the Americans, but there's little reason to break off from the Western alliance.

The primary issue over which the schism seems to be being fought is mostly subtext for Russian nationalism and the interference of Putin. It's over Ukraine, I believe.

I don't support Russian expansionism beyond Crimea. I support Ukrainian independence. The EU will never allow Russia to invade a member state of the EU. Ukraine is fortunately not a member state of the EU.
I don't want the EU to be an enemy of USA, but the EU ought to be neutral in a conflict between USA and Russia. Atlanticism is obsolete, because Russia is no longer ruled by a Communist regime. The EU ought to become the fourth great power. The Europeans will be far more able to work together in terms of foreign affairs, when Britain leaves the EU, because Britain is an Atlanticist Trojan horse in the EU. Britain has obstructed closer European military integration.
The Moscow Patriarchate and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople indeed disagree on Ukraine, but they also disagree on relations with the Catholic Church.

Wessexman

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That's just a string of your beliefs about vaguely related points, just lumped together, but whatever.

If by Atlanticism, you mean strong security and foreign policy relationships between the US, Britain, and various continental powers, I don't see why these shouldn't continue. We all have a lot in common. Why the continentals should utterly cut themselves off from this axis, it's hard to see, absent bizarre ideas about the virtues of Putin, etc. That doesn't mean we all to be completely lock-step with each other - especially that we have to follow any more interventionist projects from the US - but a close relationship between the Western powers seems a good and natural thing. If the point is we shouldn't treat Russia like the Soviet Union, I agree. But that doesn't require giving up entirely on the Western alliances.
azadi

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wessexman
That's just a string of your beliefs about vaguely related points, just lumped together, but whatever.

If by Atlanticism, you mean strong security and foreign policy relationships between the US, Britain, and various continental powers, I don't see why these shouldn't continue. We all have a lot in common. Why the continentals should utterly cut themselves off from this axis, it's hard to see, absent bizarre ideas about the virtues of Putin, etc. That doesn't mean we all to be completely lock-step with each other - especially that we have to follow any more interventionist projects from the US - but a close relationship between the Western powers seems a good and natural thing. If the point is we shouldn't treat Russia like the Soviet Union, I agree. But that doesn't require giving up entirely on the Western alliances.

Germany and other Western European countries being allies of USA made sense during the Cold War, because Soviet Russia was our common enemy. Military alliances make no sense without common enemies. I don't want the EU to be an enemy of Russia. The EU ought to be neutral in a war between USA and Russia.
I support European military integration, because the EU is a political union. The member states of a political union ought to defend each other against foreign aggression. 
Wessexman

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Actually, there's no need to have a common enemy per se to have close geopolitical bonds. That's just an arbitrary qualification you have inserted. But Russia is a rival to both the EU nations and the US. That doesn't mean it's a threat like in the Cold War, but it is opportunistic. In fact, it is more of a rival to the EU, especially the nations of central Europe, such as Germany and Poland. Putin will push until he senses proper resistance. These gain from their links to the US. So far they've been pretty poor on organising themselves in foreign policy and security terms without the US. There's no reason for them to suddenly draw away from the US. There's unlikely to be a full-scale war between Russia and the US, precisely because Putin's Russia isn't the Soviets and is a simply opportunistic. It would lose such a war. If there were such a war, other nations, like the Europeans, should respond based on the circumstances.
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