(Pershing II missiles being transported away from a US base in Heilbronn)
Will John Bolton rescind it? By all accounts he was the maniac who’s convinced his Boss Tweet to pull out of the INF (Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty). Bolton will be in Moscow today and tomorrow and will discuss (cough) the issue with Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, National Security Advisor Nikolay Patrushev, FM Sergei Lavrov, and possibly Vladamir Putin on Tuesday.
The INF was negotiated between Reagan and Gorbachev on December 8 1987, ratified by Congress in May 1988, and came into force on June 1, 1988. Hence, the above photo.
But in his Oct. 22 ‘Trump says US will withdraw from Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces treaty’, Alex Lantier writes that:
“Admiral Harry Harris, who recently stepped down as commander of the US Pacific Fleet to become the US Ambassador to South Korea, became an aggressive proponent of renegotiating or scrapping the INF treaty. Last year, Harris said that he considered arms control “problematic,” as the INF treaty limits “our ability to counter Chinese and other countries’ cruise missiles, land-based missiles.”
Testifying to the US Senate this March, Harris made clear that scrapping the INF treaty was critical to trying to re-establish full US military dominance of the Pacific Ocean. “We are at a disadvantage with regard to China today in the sense that China has ground-based ballistic missiles that threaten our basing in the western Pacific and our ships,” he said. “We have no ground-based capability that can threaten China because of, among other things, our rigid adherence … to the INF treaty.”
He references Obama’s ‘Pivot to China’ military doctrine having caused China to build intermediate-range missiles to hit aircraft carriers in the South China Sea where ‘maneuvers’ are afoot nearly constantly. He mentions Obomba’s pledging a cool trillion bucks to modernize the US nuclear arsenal, and so on.
Trump has trumpeted that Russia has been abrogating the treaty for a long time, and wonders on Twitter why Obomba hadn’t pulled out of the INF when he was prez, as has China had been building similar missiles.
“Trump’s attempt to blame Moscow and Beijing for his decision is a transparent political fraud. The US repudiation of nuclear arms control treaties is part of a longstanding, aggressive foreign policy aiming to exploit US military supremacy in the aftermath of the Stalinist dissolution of the Soviet Union to counterbalance the effects of its accelerating economic decline in world affairs. The 2001 repudiation of the ABM treaty was part of the Bush administration’s turn to war, including the illegal invasions and occupations of Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003, to dominate the Eurasian landmass.”
That pullout resulted in the creation of the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) which the Wiki notes had its “its origins in the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) which was established in 1983 by Ronald Reagan” (Star Wars)
Now according to RT today, these are The Rules:
“For nearly two decades the two states have taken turns claiming the other is violating the treaty, which bars both of them from producing all land-based ballistic and cruise missiles – not just nuclear-tipped ones – with ranges between 500 and 5,500 km. The Pentagon – citing its classified intelligence –claims that Russia has developed an intermediate range missile for the Iskander-M launcher, the existence of which Moscow has never acknowledged. In turn, Russia insists that the launchers that form the US missile defense shield in eastern Europe are themselves capable of firing intermediate range missiles, and should be destroyed under the terms of the agreement.”
“Appointed only in March, Bolton has become arguably the most influential US foreign policy architect, and is a long-time critic of arms control treaties. According to senior staff sources who spoke to the Guardian and the Washington Post last week, he personally persuaded Trump to quit INF. Stateside reports indicate that despite Trump’s customarily hazy pronouncements, Bolton will definitively signal US intentions to leave – a six-month notice is required to leave the indefinite-term agreement – during the Russian visit.
Trump has also been quoted as having said: “We are going to terminate the agreement and then we are going to develop the weapons” unless Russia and China agree to a new deal” at a campaign stop in Elko, Nevada, and “Unless Russia comes to us and China comes to us and they all come to us and they say, ‘Let’s all of us get smart and let’s none of us develop those weapons,’” Trump said, “but if Russia’s doing it and if China’s doing it and we’re adhering to the agreement, that’s unacceptable. So we have a tremendous amount of money to play with our military.”
Adding a hella lot of irony and abject hypocrisy into the mix, Trump’s Nuclear Posture Review had plans for the same missiles…and a lot more nukes (not that the HuffPo exposé doesn’t include plenty of bullshit).
Ah well, here it is: breaking:
‘Trump threatens to build up US nuclear arsenal until Russia, China ‘come to their senses’, via RT
“Russia has not adhered to the agreement,” neither in form or in spirit, Trump told reporters outside the White House on Monday, before departing for a campaign rally in Texas. The US has “more money than anyone else by far,” Trump added, implying an arms race wouldn’t come as a burden. “You can’t play that game on me.”
The treaty, which went into effect in June 1988, was a major achievement of Cold War detente and helped defuse nuclear fears in Europe. If Trump goes ahead and withdraws from the INF, that would leave the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) as the last obstacle to uncontrolled nuclear proliferation. The treaty will expire in 2021, and Washington has not yet decided on renewing it, Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton said during his visit to Moscow.”
When else was Peace given a chance recently? When Herr Trump wanted rapprochement with North Korea by way of denuclearization, of course. Who tried hardest to derail that? Elected Democrats, of course, plus whichever version of the deep state one imagines. So the sanctions are still on because: not fast enough progress? Never mind that Moon Jae-in was elected on the basis of his platform for possible reunification with North Korea, and desiring that the US declare the war on DRPK over.
But of course there was the D team squawking about the #Treason Summit at which Putin and Boss Tweet met to defuse tensions because: #RussiaGate. The summit prompted loads of gay porn (at the link), remember?
Ha, I’d included ‘‘Detente Bad, Cold War Good’ former UK ambassador Craig Murray, July 17’, and a host of other similar essays plus an interview with Prof. Stephen Cohen (‘Putin apologist’). But this took the cake:
“Mega-Lulz for Bernie Sanders who’d Tweeted: “Yesterday was a good day for Putin and the oligarchs in Russia. But it was a bad day for people in the United States and all over the world who believe in democracy and who are trying to understand what world our idiot president lives in.” Gawd bless him, The Bern knows who he is, and he ain’t ashamed to show it. Nossir. Not being in Putin’s Pocket takes precedence over deconflicting nuclear war, discussing nuclear weapons reductions…
What will be the next moves on the Devil’s Chessboard, and will they be in concert with Trump, his generals, and Wall Street’s weapons manufacturers? Perpetual War fills their coffers; a multi-polar world will not be permitted by Amerika, even as many posit Amerikan Hegemony is in its death throes, thus, at its most dangerous.
Please feel free to toss in any of the things I’ve omitted in (by now) lethargy and nausea. I expect we’ll hear more on Joltin’ Bolton’s trip to Moscow soon.
@AmbJohnBolton Oct 11 “On October 20th I’ll be travelling to Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Georgia to meet with my counterparts and other senior officials to advance American interests on a range of security issues.”
Just in three hours ago: ‘EU warns Trump of nuclear arms race risk after INF withdrawal move’ The Guardian; Some European leaders oppose US withdrawal as John Bolton visits Moscow to discuss treaty
Oh, lord luv a duck:
“The decision to withdraw from the INF has been widely criticised as a mistake by US nuclear experts, who say it will benefit Russia more than the US, arguing that Russia will now be unshackled in its development of short- and medium-range ground-launched nuclear missiles, while the US is unlikely to find allies willing to host such missiles on their soil.
They say the same goes for the Pacific, where China’s development of medium-range missiles has been cited as one justification for freeing the US from the INF’s constraints.”
Sorry if this diary ain’t ready for Prime Time’ I don’t have time to make it so..
(cross-posted at caucus99percent.com)