via Marc Faber:
In early February, the Indian government announced that the “melody queen” Lata Mangeshkar had died at the age of 92 in a Mumbai hospital, and that there would be two-day mourning. The cultural icon, fondly referred to as Didi (elder sister), and known as the “Nightingale of India” had a career that spanned seven decades.
The reason I am bringing up Lata Mangeshkar death is that the international media’s coverage of Lata’s death is a clear indication that we live in a different world than 50 years ago, a world which at the time was still America centric. Today, we have several new economic spheres and large countries, which function outside the Anglo-Saxon axis, trade with each other, and have developed huge markets on their own.
We should not underestimate this change in the world because there are people who want to destroy countries’ cultural and religious traditions and ways of life, and instead form in conjunction with the World Economic Forum (WEF), a global government.
Over the last few years, I have repeatedly explained that the entry of countries such as China, India and Russia into the global economy would present opportunities and challenges. Markets have expanded, which was beneficial for the global economy, and approximately 3 billion people who previously lived without much freedom and in poverty have seen their standards of living improve meaningfully.
At the same time, the opening of these new powerful nations has led to increased international tensions because as the existing global economic and military superpower, the US seems to be not only very reluctant to give up some of its global hegemony but actually believes (only in some quarters but among many neo cons with their powerful allies in the military defense complex) that it is the US’ divine responsibility to control the international order. Needless to say, in this global order people like Xi Jinping, Narendra Modi, and Putin should have little to say and must be “contained.”
Therefore, let me present some facts: Following the fall of the Berlin Wall the NATO member states were all in Western Europe and included in the east only Turkey. Thereafter, NATO expanded eastward, which from a Russian perspective threatened its security. According to the German newspaper Die Welt, “We have made it clear that we are not expanding NATO beyond the Elbe,” German diplomat Jürgen Chrobog wrote of a meeting of the US, Britain, France and Germany in March 1991. A note from the British National Archives, which has only now surfaced, supports the Russian claim that the West has violated 1990 promises with NATO’s eastward expansion. Chrobog further stated at the time: “We made it clear in the two-plus-four negotiations that we are not expanding NATO beyond the Elbe. We cannot therefore offer NATO membership to Poland and the others.”
More recently, Mr. Putin has made it clear that a further expansion of NATO into Ukraine was unacceptable but the US/NATO were simply unwilling to agree to such an agreement. Hence, we had last week Russia’s move on Ukraine as a preventive measure in order to avoid being faced with Ukraine’s NATO membership.
The willingness to include Ukraine into NATO was a blatant provocation, which the European leaders should have avoided contrary to US pressures. That the US hates Putin and Russia for some reason has been obvious for some time as is the case for China. Whatever goes wrong in the US, it’s either caused by Mr. Putin or Mr. Xi Jinping. In fact, now the US can blame inflation on Russia, and the Fed can postpone meaningful interest rate hikes due to the prevailing tensions.
I very much doubt that the Ukraine crisis will end with Biden and Putin shaking hands, and that all will be miraculously settled. The Irish writer Robert Wilson Lynd (1879 – 1949), noted that, “The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions.” I agree with British journalist Peter Hitchens who wrote in his blog that, “So they finally got their war. But what are they going to do now? This is the most avoidable, needless conflict in modern history.” Therefore, I doubt that the Washington warmongers who did not attack Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Libya but liberated these countries will seek a rapid solution to the conflict.
I continue to have within my equity allocation investments in resource stocks including oil, and in physical precious metals. Volatility is likely to stay high for a while.
As Doug Casey remarked, “The main reason that the US government is beating the war drums is that war has always been a distraction from domestic problems. ….A real or fabricated foreign enemy unites the public. The further the economy and the society deteriorate, the more war-mongering we’ll hear from Washington.”
Finally, in the context of the Western democracies’ united response to the Ukraine conflict and the demonization of Mr. Putin, my readers should not forget the words of the author Walter Lippman (1889 – 1974; famous for his book Public Opinion, 1922, which is considered the founding book of modern journalism). He wrote:
“When all think alike, then no one is thinking.”
With kind regards