‘Mother of Maidan’ To Resign

The common opinion, at least in the West, about the starting date of the current crisis that might escalate into nuclear WWIII is February 24, 2022, with Putin’s “unprovoked” invasion of Ukraine.

However, many unbiased observers believe that it began with the Western-backed regime change coup in Ukraine eight years earlier. Victoria Nuland, at that time, was assistant secretary of State for European and Eurasian affairs (position rank No. 6 in the State Department structure), and it was she who coordinated this coup on the ground, thus earning the dubious title of “Mother of Maidan.”

Mentioning the rank’s number is necessary since after managing to insult many of US allies during this coup with the famous “F*ck the EU!”. One would assume that using obscene language, especially against allies, should have led to her immediate resignation or at least demotion. Nevertheless, President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry did just the opposite by promoting her to a much higher (No. 3) position of under-secretary of State for political affairs.

One explanation is that she did a “good” job; the coup was successful, the pro-NATO Kyiv regime was installed, and replaced the one, which, despite being legally elected, was not interested in joining NATO.

Another possible reason was that during the coup, Nuland was in almost daily contact with VP Joe Biden, to whom Obama gave the Ukrainian portfolio. She admitted this in the same leaked phone conversation with the U.S. Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt. However, this admission was overshadowed by Nuland’s use of expletive language.

As for her unexpected resignation, some believe it was due to her failure to get the No. 2 position to succeed Wendy Sherman as deputy secretary of state after her retirement back in July last year. Nuland had to use the term “acting” in this position, but in the end, she lost a battle when Biden and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken nominated Kurt Campbell for this spot.

However, after Campbell had already got the job, Nuland addressed a meeting at the Center for Strategic and International Studies where she didn’t mention an intention to resign. Instead, she radiated optimism, saying that the tide had turned Ukraine’s way and that very soon, Russia would be smashed.

Earlier last month, during her trip to Kyiv, Nuland promised “surprises” for Russia on the Ukraine battlefield. The State Department spokesman Matthew Miller also assured the press that surprise was imminent.

Instead, it looks like actually Washington, London, and Paris got their surprises when Germany leaked their military presence in Ukraine.

The real reason for Nuland’s departure will be known sooner or later since Washington is well-known for its leaks, but what is more important is that this “Angel of Death,” as the former foreign editor of the Washington Times and well-known historian Martin Sieff called her, is no longer calling the shots.

When it comes to her replacement, a temporary one is John Bass, a former ambassador to Afghanistan who will be a bit later replaced by Julianne Smith after the Senate confirmation. Taking into account that in the past, Bass worked for Strobe Talbott during his term as deputy secretary of state in Bill Clinton’s administration and was a strong advocate of NATO expansion, while Smith was a Pentagon official who also served as then-Vice President Biden’s deputy national security adviser, one can hardly be optimistic.

The real change might come after the November elections, but let us raise hopes only a little. Even if Trump wins, and manages to assemble a team which shares his ideas that “going along with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing”, there are very powerful forces that might prevent him from implementing his agenda like they did during his first term.

This is what the distinguished American diplomat George Kennan wrote in 1987, when the USSR was still around, in his preface to Norman Cousins’ 1987 book, “The Pathology of Power”: “Were the Soviet Union to sink tomorrow under the waters of the ocean, the American military–industrial complex (MIC) would have to remain, substantially unchanged until some other adversary could be invented.”

Former senior CIA analyst Ray McGovern believes that since then, MIC has grown into a much more powerful body named MICIMATT, which means military-industrial-congress-intelligence-academy-think-tank complex.

One idea published in the Washington Times suggests to Trump, in case of his victory, to call a summit Yalta 2.0 with Putin, and Xi.  Modi, and Lulu might be considered as well. They should start a discussion of the frame of new world’s security infrastructure. Once they reach a preliminary agreement, each can discuss it with their allies and partners to reach a comprehensive text.

Those who see this as unrealistic are welcome to present their ideas since we are running out of time as the risk of WWIII is constantly growing. Four years ago, when former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and Senator Sam Nunn issued a warning that the “world needs a wake-up call” about “Sleepwalking toward the Nuclear Precipice”; presently, it is no longer “sleepwalking” but “accelerating.”

Repeated threats by Biden and his advisors about their intention to inflict a strategic defeat on Russia while its military doctrine orders using nuclear weapons in the face of such developments prove that a nuclear war is on the horizon, if not by design, then by accident.

Edward Lozansky is President of American University in Moscow.