The Self-Imposed Impotence of the Russian and Chinese Governments

By Paul Craig Roberts

“The constant stream of gratuitous lies and military exercises on our border have convinced Russia that the West intends war. The consequence will be the total destruction of the United States and its puppets.” — Vladimir Putin, recent response to the Trump regime’s recent aggressive sanctions war


The Russian and Chinese governments are puzzling. They hold all the cards in the sanction wars and sit there with no wits whatsoever as to how to play them.

The Russians won’t get any help from the Western media which obscures the issue by stressing that the Russian government doesn’t want to deprive its citizens of consumer goods from the West, which is precisely what Washington’s sanctions intend to do.

The Russian and Chinese governments are in Washington’s hands because Russia and China, thinking that capitalism had won, quickly adopted American neoliberal economics, which is a propaganda device that serves only American interests.

For years NASA has been unable to function without Russian rocket engines. Despite all the sanctions, insults, military provocations, the Russian government still sends NASA the engines. Why? Because the Russian economists tell the government that foreign exchange is essential to Russia’s development.

Europe is dependent on Russian energy to run its factories and to keep warm in winter. But Russia does not turn off the energy in response to Europe’s participation in Washington’s sanctions, because the Russian economists tell the government that foreign exchange is essential to Russia’s development.

As Michael Hudson and I explained on a number of occasions, this is nonsense. Russia’s development is dependent in no way on the acquisition of foreign currencies.

The Russians are also convinced that they need foreign investment, which serves only to drain profits out of their economy.

The Russians are also convinced that they should freely trade their currency, thereby subjecting the ruble to manipulation on foreign exchange markets. If Washington wants to bring a currency crisis to Russia, all the Federal Reserve, its vassal Japanese, EU, and UK central banks have to do is to short the ruble. Hedge funds and speculators join in for the profits.

Neoliberal economics is a hoax, and the Russians have fallen for it.

So have the Chinese.

Suppose that when all these accusations against Russia began—take the alleged attack on the Skirpals for example—Putin had stood up and said:

“The British government is lying through its teeth and so is every government including that of Washington that echoes this lie. Russia regards this lie as highly provocative and as a part of a propaganda campaign to prepare Western peoples for military attack on Russia. The constant stream of gratuitous lies and military exercises on our border have convinced Russia that the West intends war. The consequence will be the total destruction of the United States and its puppets.”

That would have been the end of the gratuitous provocations, military exercises, and sanctions.

Instead, we heard about “misunderstandings” with out “American partners,” which encouraged more lies and more provocations.

Or, for a more mild response, Putin could have announced: “As Washington and its servile European puppets have sanctioned us, we are turning off the rocket engines, all energy to Europe, titanium to US aircraft companies, banning overflights of US cargo and passenger aircraft, and putting in place punitive measures against all US firms operating in Russia.” Instead of acting intelligently, the witless Russians are still using the US dollar for their oil trade!

One reason, perhaps, that Russia does not do this in addition to Russia’s mistaken belief that it needs Western money and good will is that Russia mistakenly thinks that Washington will steal their European energy market and ship natural gas to Europe. No such infrastructure exists. It would take several years to develop the infrastructure. By then Europe would have mass unemployment and would have frozen in several winters.

What about China? China hosts a large number of major US corporations, including Apple, the largest capitalized corporation in the world. China can simply nationalize without compensation, as South Africa is doing to white South African farmers without any Western protest, all global corporations operating in China. Washington would be overwhelmed with global corporations demanding removal of every sanction on China and complete subservience of Washington to the Chinese government.

Or, or in addition, China could dump all $1.2 trillion of its US Treasuries. The Federal Reserve would quickly print the money to buy the bonds so that the price did not collapse. China could then dump the dollars that the Fed printed in order to redeem the bonds. The Fed cannot print the foreign currencies with which to purchase the dollars. The dollar would plummet and not be worth a Venezuelan bolivar unless Washington could order its pupper foreign central banks in Japan, UK, and EU to print their currencies in order to purchase the dollars. This, even if complied with, would cause a great deal of stress in what is called “the Western alliance,” but what is really Washington’s Empire.

Why don’t the Russians and Chinese play their winning hands? The reason is that neither government has any advisers who are not brainwashed by neoliberalism. The brainwashing that Americans gave Russia during the Yeltsin years has been institutionalized in Russian institutions. Trapped in this box, Russia is a sitting duck for Washington.

Turkey is a perfect opportunity for Russia and China to step forward and remove Turkey from NATO. The two countries could offer Turkey membership in BRICS, trade deals, and mutual security treaties. China could easily buy up the Turkish currency off foreign exchange markets. The same could be done for Iran.

Yet neither Russia nor China appear capable of decisive action. The two countries, both under attack as Turkey is from Washington, sit there sucking their thumbs. 

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The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of anyone associated with this website.

16 thoughts to “The Self-Imposed Impotence of the Russian and Chinese Governments”

  1. It may not happen soon enough, but things are changing. The homosexual, multicultural loving, extreme left are being challenged by new European parties that want their countries back. New (normal) parties have taken power in Austria and Italy and the new AFD has gained significant strength and is getting much stronger every day in Germany. They will return Germany to some semblance of normalcy, and these people want good relations with Russia. If this happens, these countries will stand up to the USA. The US might find itself isolated eventually.

    AFD is vehemently attacking Merkel and the other degenerates in the German gov’t and it’s a pleasure to see.

    Alice Weidel (AfD) blasts German Parliament: “This country is governed by idiots!”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tZ1cK5MEn8o

    1. The US pressure against Russia is the work of the Neocons and the Israel Lobby. America is being pushed into more wars and hostilities, just as in the case of Iraq, by a small group of Zionists and their political and media friends.

      Members of Congress know about this pressure. Most of them have experienced it. When they fail to expose it they are failing the American people.

      1. John –

        “Members of Congress know about this pressure. Most of them have experienced it..”

        CORRECT!! CORRECT!! CORRECT!!

        They feel the greatest “pressure” from their wives and lenders…. to get more $$$ from the LOBBYISTS and agents of military manufacturers!!

        They can’t help their greed… and no one will stop them from buying more land, houses and boats – and putting their kids in private schools!!

        There are NO poor congressmen. 🙂

  2. “Neoliberal economics is a hoax, and the Russians have fallen for it.”

    Similarly, the Trump “presidency” is a hoax, and Paul Craig Roberts has fallen for it.

    “Instead of acting intelligently, the witless Russians are still using the US dollar for their oil trade!”

    Instead of acting intelligently, Paul Craig Roberts is still telling Russia (and everybody else) that Trump really, really, really wants better relations with Russia. Why should Russia take any of the actions that Roberts suggests when according to Roberts poor Donald Trump is such a nice guy; such a sympathetic figure?

  3. We have the Lord of Misrule in the White House. Chaos seems to be the norm nowadays in the west. Putin’s Russia now has the stable and decent government.

    The western media turned against Russia when it took over the Crimea, but they never mention that the Ukranian coup d’etat that led to Russia acting was organised and perpetrated by a small group of Jews, leaving the new leadership Jewish, in a country where Jews are about 1 in 100. The Crimea was part of Russia until the wall came down, and most of the people there speak Russian.

    The nerve agent poisoning is not proven either way. Russia denies it and I tend to agree, Why would they use such a blatant method? Also Porton Down chemical warfare establishment is close by.

    War is unthinkable. Millions of innocent people would die because politicians had failed.

  4. The leaders in China and Russia have accumulated vast amounts of wherewithal in US Dollars. They do not WANT the Dollar to suffer by marketeering (“dumping”) of treasury notes to a world which cannot pay, anyway. It’s just a scare tactic for diplomacy. Putin’s reported wealth is measured over $200 billion. Other oligarchs measure in the same neighborhood. Think they’re really going to buck the status quo??! Not likely. Likewise, it is foolish to believe that Russian or Chinese production of any American products will be boycotted. It is a symbiotic relationship, and will continue. American gas pipelines are even now being built anticipating liquified natural gas export. There are many hungry global oligarchs – both in shipping and energy – who are chomping at the bit for a taste of the profit$. War with Russia or China will not happen!

  5. Putin is playing the long game and is going to come out on top in this game of thrones against the Zionist controlled U.S. gov.

    1. I’ll bet that, even when Vlad and Donald shook hands and made nice in Helsinki, Vlad knew that he would be stabbed in the back when Trump came home and caved to the Globalists who own him. But, I agree with PCR that both Russia and China (working together) should take a stronger hand against the mendacious Americans. Why they don’t confounds me.

      1. Considering how many times this kind of thing has happened (i.e., Trump’s routine betrayals), isn’t it more likely that Trump is merely putting on an act (rather than “caving in” post factum) for the benefit of those people – both at home and abroad – who cannot admit that they were taken in by this fraudster and who need to be continually “fooled” accordingly?

      2. Occam’s Razor, the slit slashed virtually without pain, favors The Donald as puppet, period. Unless you endow Howdy Doody, the Muppets — how about Punch and Judy?! — with adequate consciousness and free will, how outside “Disney Studios” do you create a Pinocchio or dancing brooms?

    1. Alternative hypothesis: TPTB have slated US, Inc. — by any other sleazy appellation — and its corporate children and franchisees for social, economic, political, and (perhaps) militaristic take down. “Our” time has come, I suggest. To initiate, catalytically, the reaction component of “Problem-Reaction-Solution”, my hypothesis includes an embedded assumption, namely, a very large, not-to-be ignored “false flag event” will occur. Though predictably much less audacious, far less spectacular than 9-11, the event (e.g., fake EMP, with widespread outage of electrical systems, especially in highly urbanized areas) will have many possible explanations with few to no investigative journalists to ponder and disentangle a dearth of relevant data from waves of disinfo. A prolonged time of “martial law” will allow the easy mop-up of uppity people ensconced in “redoubts”; TPTB can’t have viral skepticism procreate any further than it has!

      I also hypothesize PTB in both Russia and China are in on the charade, the game, the NWO to emerge thereafter.

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