To heal an illness, we must first diagnose it correctly; we must understand what is causing it. What then are the roots of the Anglo-Russian antagonism that we see going on related to the conflict in Ukraine? For while the local conflict there appears to be one between Russians and Ukrainians that has its own history in the decades and centuries of uneasy relations between those two Slavic peoples, it is also part of a much larger conflict between English-speaking culture – or rather between the elites who have been steering English-speaking culture for centuries – and Slavic culture, notably that of its largest constituent population, the Russians. Then again, this larger struggle between the two cultures, the Anglosphere (Anglo-America) and the Slavs, is a reflection of an even more ancient struggle: between the peoples of “the West” and those of “the East”. “The West” here means the peoples who are prominent now, in the present time, since the 15th century when the so-called “voyages of discovery” began from the west of Europe, and “the West” today is led, for better or worse, by the English-speaking peoples, notably the USA. “The East” means the region that provided peoples who were prominent in ancient times millennia ago and which will provide peoples who will be prominent again in the distant future. From a spiritual-scientific or anthroposophical perspective, we are witnessing here a struggle between the present and the future, between a culture that is focused more on the individual and on individual self-assertion and a culture that inclines more to the spirit of community.
It seems to be the destiny of “the West” to pass through the trials of the lonely and isolated individual who overcomes selfishness and self-assertion to the point where he or she can build new communities together with other individuals who have been through similar trials. This is a very risky and dangerous process which must eventually destroy all the old social forms continued from ancient times. Rudolf Steiner pointed out in 1919 that the mid-point of the 20th century “coincides with the end of the period in which the forces from before the middle of the 15th century – still atavistically with us to some extent – reach their ultimate decadence.” In the western historical context, this means all the legal and social forces of the Greco-Roman period, as well as all those theocratic commandments from ancient Israel, Babylon, Egypt, and Persia. “We are living in a period of evolution when the gods are only too ready to help, if human beings will come forward to meet them. But the gods have to work in accordance with their own laws, which stipulate that they must work with free human beings and not with puppets.”(1)
While “the West” is going through this dangerous process, it sems to this writer that the East, and other regions of the world, will keep humanity alive, so to speak, while the narrow path towards the new conscious community life is being discovered in the West over the coming centuries. The East, Africa and S. America, will keep humanity alive through the instinctive, still vital but slowly fading forces from the past until the time comes when the West can bring to the East the example of the new communities of free, striving individuals. Precisely because of its ancient heritage and its faithfulness to that heritage, the East will be able to take up this new community impulse and make more of it in the future than westerners will be able to do.(2)
It is not difficult to recognise that the wave of culture and civilisation has gradually moved westwards from the time of ancient China and India. From the Near East and Egypt, it moved to the lands around the Mediterranean, southern Europe, Greece and Rome. Then from the mid-15th century it moved north beyond the Alps, and since the time of Gutenberg, Dürer, Luther, and Copernicus, it has increasingly been the Germanic peoples of northern Europe who have moved to the fore. According to Rudolf Steiner, From the middle of the 4th millennium, the peoples of eastern Europe, the Slavs, and notably the Russians, (also perhaps the Finns and Romanians) will be in the vanguard of the impulse to new community for the following c.2000 years. But until the 4th millennium, the dangerous drive through the eye (“the I”) of the needle to individualism is being led by the peoples of northern Europe (beyond the Alps) and their American extension across the Atlantic, especially the English-speaking peoples. Part of the danger of this period is that elements within the elite of these peoples, elements who wish to preserve the traditional hierarchies of the past from before the late 18th century, the culture of lords and serfs, seek to hold evolution back at that point of selfish individualism that benefits themselves and to hold down the mass of the population though the use of economic relations and the law. Nevertheless, these elites recognised that ‘the lower orders’ in northern and western Europe and in America would seek to assert their individualism too, and this would lead to the drive for democracy and for new, non-hierarchical social forms. These social, and democratic impulses, the western elites determined, must be held back as far as possible in the West and must be diverted from the West and transplanted to the Slavic East where the instinctive sense for communal life and brotherhood – everything that is bound up with the various meanings of the Slavic word mir (peace, joy, world, community, village, pronounced ‘meer’) was stronger and would be able to absorb them. With the appropriate use of western propaganda, once transplanted ‘over there’, they could even be made to appear dangerous and threatening to the West, which was to be made into a culture that stands for the rights of the individual as contrasted with those of the community. This polarity would become the basis of the bipolar world of the 20th century, which the current western, anti-Russian propaganda is seeking to recreate.
An entry, most likely from 1918, from one of Rudolf Steiner’s notebooks sheds much light on this entire process and on the ongoing struggle between Russia and the West: “What forces are confronting each other in this war and for what is it being waged? Driving things forward is a group of people who seek to dominate the earth through dynamic capitalist economic impulses. To these people belong all those circles which this group is able to bind and organise through economic methods. The essential point is that this group knows that on the territory of Russia there is an unorganised collection of human beings who, with regard to the future, bear in themselves the seed of socialist organisation. [By ‘socialist’ here, Steiner does not mean as in political movement or party but as in social community living, social relations – TB.] To bring this socialist seed impulse within the realm of power of the anti-social group is the calculated aim of that group. This goal cannot be reached if Middle Europe, with understanding, seeks an association between itself and this seed impulse in the East. Only because that [anti-social] group is to be found within the Anglo-American world has the present constellation of forces arisen as a temporary phenomenon, which is disguising all the real polarities and interests [by “the present constellation of forces”, he means here the Triple Entente alliance of Russia, Britain and France, who were fighting against Germany and Austria in World War One]. It is disguising above all the true fact that a fight is going on for the seed of Russian culture between the Anglo-American plutocrats and the peoples of Middle Europe. In the moment when this fact is revealed to the world by Middle Europe, an untrue constellation will be replaced by a true one. The war will therefore go on in some form or other until German and Slavic culture have found their way to the common goal of freeing humanity from the yoke of the West.
There are only these alternatives: either the lies with which the West has to operate if it wants to succeed will be unmasked and people will come to realise that those behind the Anglo-American cause are the bearers of a stream which has its roots in impulses which stem from before the French Revolution and in their effort to dominate the world by capitalist means, and effort which only employs the impulses of Revolution as a phrase [or slogan] in order to disguise itself behind them – or people will yield the rulership of the world to an occult group within the Anglo-American world until, from the subjugated German and Slavic region, through rivers of blood, the true spiritual goal of the earth will be saved.”(3)
In other words, if people don’t wake up to the lies and deception with which the elite forces of the West must operate, the consequence will be terrible suffering and violence until those elites’ actions are overcome through impulses that stem from the Germanic and Slavic cultures. There is a great deal in Steiner’s words here. They point to an elite group in the West which functions economically and seeks world domination i.e., self-seeking economic control through a system of capitalism that is essentially selfish and immoral, concerned only for the profit of owners and investors.(4) These people have insight into the ethnic characteristics of target cultures and seek to use these characteristics to exercise power over those target cultures e.g. the Slavic populations of eastern Europe.
In Steiner’s time such members of the western elite were for example, Lord Salisbury and Lord Alfred Milner in Britain and the Adams brothers, Henry and Brooks Adams, in the East Coast American elite. The Adams brothers were two of those who stood close to the plutocrats of the American ‘Gilded Age’ of the
1890s and 1900s. Steiner was well aware of Brooks Adams (pic above) and in his lectures on the causes of the First World War in 1916 (GA 173) Steiner encouraged people to read Brooks Adams’ book The Law of Civilization and Decay (1895) to understand the thinking of these western elitists. In that book we see how Adams sees nations in terms of phases of birth, growth and decay and also considers that there are ‘young’ peoples who are both imaginative inwardly creative and warlike and there are more ‘mature’ peoples who are sober, scientific and commercial. He considered the Russians to be the first kind and the Anglo-Americans the second. The first kind he regarded as backward and the second, as progressive.
Where did Adams go with such ideas? He was already arguing in 1900 that in fifty years’ time (i.e., by 1950) the world would be divided in two poles by the power struggle between the sea-based system of the USA and the land-based system of Russia: “Americans”, he said, “must recognize that this is war to the death, – a struggle no longer against single nations, but against a continent. There is not room in the economy of the world for two centres of wealth and empire. One organism, in the end, will destroy the other. The weaker must succumb.” He felt that the key to victory in the future “lay in the development of China, which was why the USA had to do everything to bring China under its own economic control and ‘reduce it to a part of our economic system’, before Russia and continental Europe (e.g. Germany) gained possession of Chinese markets. This idea became the theme of his book America’s Economic Supremacy, in which he prophesied the fall of the British Empire and its replacement by the USA,”(5) a notion forcefully argued by James Burnham in his very influential book, The Managerial Revolution in the 1940s. “In 1902 Adams’ next book, ‘The New Empire’, appeared, in which the rise of the USA to world power was again postulated as inevitable. Within the next fifty years, he wrote, the USA would ‘outweigh any single empire, if not all empires combined’.”(6) Here we have the origin of the plans for the kind of US-dominated unipolar order that emerged in the 1990s after ‘the end of the Cold War’.(7)
Brooks Adams thought that if Asia were to industrialise and become independent, the decline of the USA and Europe would be inevitable, in accordance with the Adams brothers’ motto: civilisation = centralisation = economy. If an independent, decolonised Asia were able to industrialise, it would become more successful at doing this, the Adams brothers felt, because economic efficiency depended on cheap labour which was so plentiful in Asia. Hence the consequences for China and the modern capitalist world of the entry into global capitalism of some 400 million cheap labour Chinese workers after 1990, the result of Deng Xiaoping’s opening up of Communist China to western capitalism. This went back to the ground-breaking visit of US President Nixon and Henry Kissinger to China in 1972 and the visit of David Rockefeller to Deng Xiaoping’s mentor Zhou Enlai in 1973. The Rockefellers were plutocrats with a farsightedness similar to that of the Adams brothers. German historian Markus Osterrieder writes: “For reasons of security alone, therefore, America [or rather, American plutocrats – TB] would in the future have to control Asia, Europe, and indeed the whole world. Brooks Adams had thus shaped the fundamentals of a philosophy of history and geopolitics” upon which the imperialist policies of the US elite could be constructed. …in the summer of 1914, Brooks Adams finally saw all his ideas confirmed and spoke of a war that would last thirty years (1914–1944!) as the necessary result of international economic competition, which would ‘[…] give […] us a new world whoever wins. […] The world, socially and economically, [could] never again be the same as it was before the breakdown of the old order of things which began the war.’”(8)
Osterrieder notes that on 22 December 1900 in the American magazine The Outlook, readers were told that “the true statesman looks to the future. It is clear to one who does thus look to the future that, as the issue of the past was between Anglo-Saxon and Latin civilization, so the issue of the future is between Anglo-Saxon and Slavic civilizations. […] The wise statesman will make every provision possible by establishing cordial relations between all the kindred races [of the English-speaking world] for the final victory of the Anglo-Saxon type of civilization.”(9)
This was one of the three key aims of the Anglosphere elites in the world war that began in 1914: to unite the English-speaking world in order to secure its dominance in the world. The other two aims were to reduce the economic power of Germany and place it under Anglosphere control (finally achieved in 1945) and to divert socialism (Bolshevism) to Russia where it would become a Marxist socialist experiment there that was not to be allowed to occur in the West. In a lecture of 1 Dec. 1918 (GA 186) Steiner said: “What has developed in Russia [i.e. Communism] is basically only the realisation of what the West wants to take place there. […] Whatever people [in the West] may say they want consciously, what they strive for is to create a caste of masters in the West and a caste of economic slaves in the East, beginning at the Rhine and extending eastwards into Asia. […] A caste of slaves which is to be organised socialistically and which is to take up all the impossibilities of a social structure which are then not to be applied to the English-speaking population.” This was the western elites’ goal in 1917 and was still the goal in the 1990s when Communist China became the workshop of the world.
1917, the West and the Bolshevik Revolution
Raymond Robins, an American economist and labour activist who played a significant role after the Bolshevik Revolution in persuading people in the US to accept Bolshevism in Russia and eventually to establish formal relations between the US and Bolshevik Russia (which did not happen until 1933), said in 1919 before a US Senate Committee formed to investigate Bolshevik propaganda: “Let us assume that I am here to capture Russia for Wall Street and American businessmen. Let us assume that you are a British wolf and I am an American wolf, and that when this [civil] war is over, we are going to eat each other up for the Russian market; let us do so in perfectly frank, man fashion, but let us assume at the same time that we are fairly intelligent wolves, and that we know that if we do not hunt together in this hour, the German wolf will eat us both up, and then let us go to work.” Robins said on 22.3.1919: “There are only two possible centres for the new economic organisation of Russia: either the Central Empires [i.e. Germany and Austria-Hungary], or America and the Allies. Which shall it be?”(10) Robins declared that the Bolsheviks’ economic formula was “economically impossible and morally wrong” but that he was interested in the Soviet form of government as “an experiment at once tremendously vital in Russia and possibly useful in the history of human progress.”(11) Guaranty Trust, a subsidiary of J P Morgan, was both pressing for recognition of the Bolsheviks and was also funding the “ultra-conservative, anti-Soviet organisation United Americans, which warned incessantly of the danger of a ‘Red invasion’ of the USA and powerfully stirred the rampant ‘Red Scare’”.(12) The Anglo-American financiers funded both sides; Thomas Lamont of J.P. Morgan also funded Mussolini’s Fascists. The bankers were concerned with power; the means to achieve it were secondary.
Today, we are witnessing in Ukraine a massive struggle: the Five Eyes states of the Anglosphere (US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand), the powerbrokers of the present, vs China and Russia, the peoples of the ancient past and of the distant future, with the financiers of the West seeking to profit from both sides.
The Rudolf Steiner notebook entry from 1918 mentioned earlier refers to the importance to future human evolution of the relationship between central and eastern Europe, between the German and the Slavic peoples. This has to do with building the bridge between the present and future epochs, the bridge between individualistic and communal cultural development. Consequently, the spiritual forces seeking to frustrate that development have been trying to block such efforts at bridge-building between the German and Slavic peoples, between central and eastern Europe. The leaders of the West understood well how to involve those two peoples and regions in major wars against each other in the 20th century.
Markus Osterrieder writes that an unpublished note by Steiner from August 1917 reveals that one of the ways in which the British and Americans will seek to dominate the world will be through trying to get the Slavic peoples to believe that “their national aspirations can be realised under the leadership of the English-speaking peoples and that thereby they can come into an economic relationship with England and America over the heads of the Germans, that will result in a positive export balance for those [two] countries [Britain and America].” Steiner goes on in the note: “….one has to see how, along secret pathways, England – and behind it, America – has guided Slavic developments in the Balkans with great historical farsightedness, how it has held its hand over Russia, so that Russia has run its politics in accordance with the goals of the English-speaking peoples.”(13) The Poles and the Czechs are two Slavic peoples in particular who have looked to the West for leadership and protection over the past 100 years – with disastrous results in 1938, 1939 and 1968.(14) But the Russians too allowed themselves to be led by the Franco-British Entente into the catastrophe of 1914 and the subsequent Bolshevik Revolution and Civil War which destroyed their society and so much of their culture. This was partly also due to the Russians’ own centuries-old illusions about Moscow being the ‘Third Rome’, that is, the successor to Rome and Constantinople and also to the Russians’ longing to take Istanbul (Constantinople) from the Ottoman Turks. It was also due to Russia’s other, more recent illusion – that of Panslavism, the racial and nationalist dream that had emerged since the mid-19th century to unite all the Slavs of Europe under the Russian Empire, which is what more conservative and imperially-minded Russians wanted, or else at least to unite the Slavs in a Panslavist federation under Russian patronage, which is what many more liberal nationalist Russians wanted. The British elite knew how to exploit these dreams too: to present the Central European empires of Germany and Austria-Hungary alongside Turkey as Russia’s enemies who frustrated her dreams of Panslavist unity and the taking of Constantinople. By allying herself with France and Britain, these deluded Russians felt, they could achieve their nation’s two dreams.
The British played a key role in the first Russian Revolution through Lord Milner and his Round Table group,(15) MI6 having already supervised the assassination of Grigori Rasputin at the end of 1916(16) because Rasputin was felt to have undue influence over the Czar’s German wife, and Rasputin had always been opposed to the war, which he felt threatened to destroy the dynasty and Russia. The British and the Americans colluded in getting Trotsky to Russia in the spring of 1917 via the USA and providing the funds for his trip(17). Wall St bankers and financiers such as Thomas Lamont of J. P. Morgan and William B. Thompson, Director of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, did their utmost to ensure that the Bolsheviks would survive and remain in power through the Civil War and afterwards. Thompson donated US$1 million to the Bolsheviks and declared to British Prime Minister David Lloyd George: “Let’s make these Bolsheviks our Bolsheviks, don’t let the Germans make them their Bolsheviks” – a remark which apparently pleased Lloyd George, who himself provided political backing in the West for the Bolshevik Revolution.(18) US and British business interests then helped to industrialise the USSR in the 1920s and 30s even while at the same time funding anti-Bolshevik propaganda in the West.(19)
The Cold War
Carolyn Eisenberg of Hofstra University, New York, in her 1996 book Drawing the Line – The American Decision to Divide Germany 1944-1949 details how the western Allies drove the decision to divide Germany and Europe in the mid to late 1940s. She concludes that “Despite their manifold violations of human freedom, the Soviets were not the architects of the German settlement. It was the Americans and their British partners who had opted for partition with the associated congealment of the continental division.” It is long forgotten, she says, that “the Americans and the British had initiated all the formal steps towards separation…” The priorities for “the small circle of Americans who set policy for Germany” did not include weighing alternatives. What drove them “was a conception of national security that took the expansion of West European free trade as an absolute requirement for the United States. Though this reflected the aspirations of large internationally oriented corporations, it was less clearly in line with the predilections of the public, for whom issues of East European freedom and the maintenance of peace held greater salience….The oppressive internal policies of the Soviet Union that were gradually imposed upon the population of East Germany were not the source of the postwar schism….what produced that unwanted result was an ambitious American agenda, which was juxtaposed on a European continent that was more impoverished, strife-ridden, and unruly than anyone in Washington had envisioned….Had American officials been more flexible and sought a compromise solution in occupied Germany, it is possible that the Soviets would have blocked or overturned it. But this is something we cannot know since the United States selected a different course. In the wreckage of the Cold War, America has yet to acknowledge responsibility for the structures that it built.”(20)
The Cold War division of Europe and Germany, then, was made in Washington and London, rather than Moscow, and in any case, the division that was forced through by 1949 had already been envisaged by Lord Milner 30 years earlier, in 1919, when he had advocated dividing Germany in two: a western capitalist Germany and an eastern Prussian Bolshevik one. He had already identified in 1919 the young man who he thought would be the best candidate to govern the pro-western half of Germany – the young mayor of Cologne, Konrad Adenauer, who in 1949 actually became West Germany’s first Chancellor.(21) The Cold War in Europe was an Anglo-American production.
A year after the disappearance of the USSR, in 1992, Zbigniew Brzezinski (pic above), National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter, began his article on the history of the Cold War in the 70th anniversary edition of Foreign Affairs magazine with a reference to the Prussian general Karl von Clausewitz and his often-quoted maxim: “war is the continuation of politics by other means”. The Cold War was a war, Brzezinski wrote, “for control over the Eurasian landmass and…for global preponderance.” The US ‘offensive posture’ in the 1950s, he wrote, “never materialised” because “the American side never fully meant it. The policy of liberation was a strategic sham, designed to a significant degree for domestic political reasons…The policy was basically rhetorical, at most tactical.”(22) In other words, it was intended to fool the citizens of the West as much if not more than the Russians.
In that 1992 article, Brzezinski let some other cats out of the bag: for example, the notion that post-Soviet Russia may be split up: he wrote: “Russia’s own unity may soon also be at stake, with perhaps the Far Eastern provinces tempted before too long to set up a separate Siberian-Far Eastern Republic of their own.”(23) Brzezinski would return to this notion of a Far Eastern Republic five years later, in his key work The Grand Chessboard. But this disintegrated Russia also featured in an article in the British weekly magazine The Economist – a major propagandist journal for the globalist New World Order – in the winter of that same year 1992.(24) The anonymous Economist writer was imagining the future over the next 50 years and suggested that during that period, all of Russia east of the Ural mountains, a vast territory, would be lost to “a Muslim superstate-like entity” and to China. Russia would revert to its European borders of the 16th century and thus, presumably, could then be integrated into a transatlanticist European Union under the ‘guiding hand’ of the USA and the Bank of International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland.
Indeed, this transatlanticist future was the only future that Brzezinski saw for Russia. In the chapter titled ‘The Black Hole’ in his Grand Chessboard book (1997), he wrote about what he called Russia’s “Dilemma of the One Alternative”: all counteralliance options (with China, Iran, Eurasia, the Franco-German axis) “evade the only choice that is left open to Russia. Russia’s only real geostrategic option – the option that could give Russia a realistic international role and also maximise the opportunity of transforming and socially modernising itself – is Europe. And not just any Europe, but the transatlantic Europe of the enlarging EU and NATO. Such a Europe is taking shape….and it is also likely to remain linked closely to America. That is the Europe to which Russia will have to relate if it is to avoid dangerous geopolitical isolation.”(25) Brzezinski even dangled the prospect of “ever-closer association with NATO” in front of Russia, but only association, not full membership. Putin asked Clinton about Russian membership of NATO in 2000, but Clinton declined, saying simply: “You’re too big”. Russia, said Brzezinski, “could increasingly become an integral part of a Europe that embraces not only Ukraine but reaches to the Urals and even beyond.” Indeed, Brzezinski’s obsession was “the redefinition of Russia” and the end of what he called “the Russian Empire”. Russia’s refusal to accept Brzezinski’s transatlanticist European future or its refusal to accept Ukraine’s fully partaking in the EU and NATO – and we should remember that behind Brzezinski were the plutocrats of the West, such as his long-term sponsor, David Rockefeller – would, Brzezinski said, “be tantamount to the rejection of Europe in favour of a solitary ‘Eurasian’ identity and existence. … One cannot predict how fast that process can move, but one thing is certain: it will move faster if a geopolitical context is shaped that propels Russia in that direction, while foreclosing other temptations… Indeed, for Russia, the dilemma of the one alternative is no longer a matter of making a political choice but of facing up to the imperatives of survival.”(26) This was clearly the language of intimidation and the height of hubris by an influential American statesman in America’s ‘unipolar moment’ in the 1990s.
Of course, Brzezinski in the mid-1990s did not foresee Xi Jinping and his vast Eurasian Belt and Road transport infrastructure project, sometimes dubbed “the New Silk Road”, which got underway when Xi came to power in 2013. Today, Russia, despite the sanctions imposed by the West and its puppets since February this year, is very far from the geopolitical ‘isolation’ and ‘solitude’ of which western media continually speak. In 2014, the year that began with the Maidan coup in Kiev, and only a year after Xin Jinping came to power in China, Russia and China signed the giant US$400 billion “Power of Siberia” gas pipeline project to supply Russian gas to China over 30 years. The negotiations had been going on for almost 10 years. The gas started flowing to China in December 2019.
Russia and The Eurasian ‘Pivot’
When that deal was being negotiated, the western media were often speaking about President Obama’s new “pivot to East Asia” strategy (2012). The use of the word “pivot” was interesting, as it recalled a key concept of one of Zbigniew Brzezinski’s long-dead mentors in geopolitics, the Edwardian geographer Sir Halford Mackinder (1861-1947). In his Grand Chessboard book, Brzezinski referred to Mackinder and his concept and appeared to downplay it, claiming that “geopolitics has moved from the regional to the global dimension, with preponderance over the entire Asian continent serving as the central basis for global primacy”. But in fact, Brzezinski’s entire book contradicts this claim; his own concerns bear out the ongoing focus in Anglo-American strategic thinking on Mackinder’s original insights. In 1904, the year of the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War (another British proxy war against Russia), Mackinder, a protégé of Lord Milner and Director of the London School of Economics, had produced a text that soon became famous, The Geographical Pivot of History, in which he advanced his ‘heartland’ or ‘pivot’ theory. A vast area east of the Urals, including most of Siberia and Central Asia extending southward to the Himalayas and China, was the key to world power, Mackinder said, because of its enormous material resources, its water sources and the energies of the many populations that lived in the region and had emerged from it or crossed it over the centuries. Any state that owned this huge territory and could build a network of railways across it would be a land power impregnable to attack from sea powers such as Britain and America, and if it was able to ally with a major coastal power such as China, Japan or Germany, it would have the human and material wherewithal to build a great fleet that could challenge the sea powers for the hegemony of the world.
Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road project is Mackinder’s nightmare come true. To gain access to this pivot or heartland region, Mackinder said, control of eastern Europe was crucial. Today, that means Ukraine, and it is why Ukraine is such an important chess piece on Brzezinski’s Grand Chessboard. A Ukraine that is firmly part of the West, integrated into the EU and NATO, which he expected would happen sometime between 2005-2015 would a) make it impossible for Russia to continue as an ‘empire’, b) encourage Russia to orient, or rather ‘occident’ itself towards the West and c) enable the USA to project power via France, Germany and his ancestral Polish homeland into Ukraine – much of which used to belong to the Polish aristocracy, to which his own forebears had belonged – and beyond to central Asia and the ‘pivot’ region. Given that between 2001 and 2021, the USA was gradually pushed out of the several bases it had established in Central Asia for the first time in its history following its invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, Ukraine became an even more crucial chess piece for the western penetration of Central Asia. Following the outbreak of conflict in the Donbass and the Crimea in 2014 after the Maidan coup, the US began to supply Ukraine with military equipment and training to the tune of US$2.5 billion (2014-Feb.2022), US$400 million of which was in 2021 alone, and since Feb. 2022 it has provided Ukraine with US$5.6 billion in “security assistance”.(27) “On 28 April 2022, US President Joe Biden asked Congress for an additional $33 billion to assist Ukraine, including $20 billion to provide weapons to Ukraine. On 21 May 2022, the United States passed legislation providing $40 billion in new military and humanitarian foreign aid to Ukraine, marking a historically large commitment of funds.”(28) This contrasts with US$40-50 billion a year spent on average between 2011 and 2020 on total US foreign aid per annum, and gives a clue as to how important the US elite consider Ukraine and the current conflict to be. Such figures suggest that the USA is indeed fighting a proxy hot war against Russia, a war in which Ukrainian troops are dying instead of Americans, all in order to achieve Brzezinski’s goal of a Ukraine in the EU and NATO and thus with NATO bases in northern Ukraine and NATO missiles only a few minutes’ flying time (300 miles) from Moscow.
In 1919, Mackinder extended his heartland region eastwards into northern China and westwards to central Europe so that it included all of European Russia, Ukraine, the Baltic states, Poland and eastern Germany. In fact, his new western boundary line for the pivot region corresponded almost exactly with the Cold War borders of Germany 30 years later. Let us remind ourselves that for Mackinder, the nightmare scenario was if Russia, the impregnable land power, with its huge labour force and its vast material resources, would ally itself with a vigorous, disciplined, intelligent people like the Germans or the Japanese. If that happened, those allies together might be able to create a fleet that could defeat Anglo-American naval power.
Mackinder’s nightmare – the nightmare of the Anglo-American elites – cropped up again in 2015 in a speech to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs by the very well-connected geostrategist, Hungarian-American George Friedman, who was then head of the foreign affairs consultancy firm Stratfor. In answer to a question as to whether ISIS was an existential threat to the USA, he replied:
“The primordial interest of the United States, over which, for a century, we have fought wars – the First, Second, and Cold War – has been the relationship between Germany and Russia, because united, they are the only force that could threaten us, and to make sure that that doesn’t happen.”(29)
A remarkable statement that no British or American politician had made in public before this, it sheds tremendous light on the history of the past 120 years, because it helps explain why the Cold War was the sham that Brzezinski had revealed it to be 23 years earlier. In other words, the purpose of dividing Europe and the world, ‘containing’ Russia without fighting her directly, was not to defeat Communism or even Russia or China, but rather, to keep the energies of Germany and Japan under control, well integrated into the post-war Anglo-American capitalist system, and prevent them from getting close to Russia and China economically or politically. This was exactly what Mackinder had recommended 111 years earlier, in 1904, and was the line that British and American foreign policy had followed with such brilliant success since 1904. The British Entente with France in 1904 led to the Entente with Russia in 1907; the Entente with Russia led to the First World War seven years later in which Russia fought against Germany. From the First World War came the Bolshevik Revolution, Fascism and Nazism, and also the Second World War, in which again Germany and Russia fought each other; the Second World War led to the Cold War and the global bipolar order – the division of the world which isolated the USSR and Communist China from the capitalist system and therefore ensured American economic dominance of the world for 45 years. It also provided the elites of the West with models of authoritarian surveillance and control which could prove useful in the future.
But those elites, Rudolf Steiner frequently said, were farsighted and possessed occult knowledge of how history works and of the understanding of national characteristics that could be manipulated by those elites. So after exactly 72 years, 200 years on from the French Revolution, the Soviet Marxist experiment in Russia was forcibly terminated by the powers of the West who had begun to prepare the termination in 1972/1973 when the Rockefellers’ Trilateral Commission was founded and the World Economic Forum was established, when the petrodollar era began, when Middle Eastern terrorism took off, and when Richard Nixon, Henry Kissinger and David Rockefeller all visited Communist China. In those years too, the bipartisan Council on Foreign Relations in New York, steered for decades by David Rockefeller, set up “The 1980s Project”, one of the key aims of which was to deconstruct the Soviet Union. Rockefeller made sure his protégé Brzezinski became National Security Adviser in President Jimmy Carter’s government, which featured a number of other Trilateral Commission members. The Polish-American Brzezinski just happened to be in post when Pope John Paul I strangely died after only 33 days in office and was replaced by the first Polish Pope, John Paul II, who was soon making connections with the rebellious Polish trade union movement, Solidarnosc. During Brzezinski’s time in office, the Shah was toppled in the Iranian Revolution and replaced with the radical cleric, Ayatollah Khomeini, and with the aid of the Muslim world, both Shia and Sunni united in opposition to the atheist communists in Kabul, Brzezinski was able to succeed in ‘giving Russia its own Vietnam’ experience in Afghanistan, as he himself put it.
Caught between, on the one hand, the challenges provoked throughout the Warsaw Pact bloc by the rebellious Poles of Solidarnosc, who were aided by an ‘unholy alliance’ between the Vatican and the Reagan White House(30), and on the other hand, by a war against the turbulent Afghan mujahideen which dragged on for 10 years, and also rocked by economic pressures on its ramshackle economy trying to compete with the Star Wars missile programme of the USA, the Soviet Union began to implode: the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in northern Ukraine in 1986 was a mighty symptom of the looming collapse, then came the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Soviet satellite states 33 years ago in 1989, exactly 200 years after the French Revolution. Two years later, on Christmas Day, the USSR disappeared from history. To the elites of the West, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the USSR was not the great ‘surprise’ that the western mainstream media made out to western publics that it was. This latest upheaval in Russian history had been planned in the West since the early 1970s. Reagan and Thatcher made sure that the threat of ‘socialism’ to the western elites, a threat identified over a century earlier, was effectively buried; in the 1980s trade unionism was emasculated, and the enthusiasms of the 1970s for political socialism waned. The ‘experiment’ to divert the dangers of Marxist socialism away from the West to Russia(31) and the East had ‘succeeded’ and could therefore be terminated; meanwhile, the capitalist ‘experiment’ in Marxist China was about to take off…
In the 1990s there were those in globalist circles in the West who were hopeful that Russia and China could both be integrated into the global capitalist system of the new One World Order and brought under western control. Brzezinski too, appeared to hope that Russia would accept the ‘one alternative’ he prescribed for it in The Grand Chessboard, but it is unlikely that he was sincere in doing so; his great antipathy for Russia leaches out between his sentences in that book and in his subsequent statements over the years. Meanwhile, paranoid Russophobic suspicions remained in conservative western circles; the NATO military alliance, with its dangerous and irresponsible Article 5 in the North Atlantic Treaty (“The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all…”) was not disbanded, as its communist Cold War counterpart, the Warsaw Pact, had been. NATO’s first Secretary-General, Lord Ismay, had said that NATO had been founded “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in and the Germans down”. Those have evidently remained the priorities of the western elites until today; they still want to keep the Germans and the Russians apart, the Russians out of Europe and the Americans very much in. With the death of Stalin in 1953, the USSR applied in the following year to join NATO; Ismay opposed the application, comparing Russia to “an unrepentant burglar requesting to join the police force.” He felt that NATO “must grow until the whole free world gets under one umbrella.” After the end of the (first) Cold War, throughout the 1990s and the 2000s, NATO steadily advanced up to the very borders of Russia despite well-known verbal assurances given to the Russians by western leaders in the early 1990s that this would not happen. After Vladimir Putin refused to cooperate with or approve of the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, the western media as a whole turned against him (the more conservative media, ever suspicious of Russia, had always been hostile), and he has been added to the list of western media bogeyman – after Saddam Hussein, Slobodan Milosevich, Osama bin Laden, Muammar al-Gadaffi, Bashar al-Assad, and Donald Trump, the dragons that the English-speaking St. George feels obliged to conquer. But in this latest case, of Russia and Vladimir Putin, the western media and the western elites have perhaps overlooked or else think it of no importance that on the standard of the president of Russia is a double-headed eagle that adorns the tricolour Russian flag and on that eagle’s breast is an image of…..St George conquering the dragon.
The second part of this article will diagnose further deep-rooted aspects of the Anglo-Russian antagonism before attempting to outline a ‘cure’ for this particular social and cultural ‘illness’.
1. Lecture of 14.12.1919, in Rudolf Steiner, Collected Works GA 194.
2. For example, the individualistic, proto-Protestant impulse at the beginning of the modern epoch began in England with John Wycliffe (c.1331-1384) and his followers, the Lollards, but it did not develop into a major social and communal movement in England and was rather easily suppressed by King Henry V (1413-1422) but it spread from England via Queen Anne, the Bohemian wife of the English king, Richard II (1377-1399), to Bohemia where, among the western Slavs, it became a powerful communal force in the Hussite movement (followers of the martyr Jan Hus 1372-1415), that could not be suppressed either by the Vatican or by the Holy Roman Empire and resisted five papal crusades over a period of 14 years (1420-1434).
3. Andreas Bracher (ed.), Kampf um den russischen Kulturkeim (2014) untranslated. The translation in the article above was made by the author.
4. Just two American companies, BlackRock, Inc. and the Vanguard Group, Inc., which are worth at least $US20 trillion, own the commanding heights of the Anglosphere economy:
See:https://www.conservativebusinessjournal.com/2021/11/blackrock-and-vanguard-the-two-headed-thing-that-ate-america/ and https://www.organicconsumers.org/news/who-owns-world-blackrock-and-vanguard
5. Markus Osterrieder, Welt im Umbruch (2014), p. 1224.
6. Osterrieder, loc. cit.
7. For example, the “Defense Planning Guidance of 1992” document by Paul Wolfowitz, Under-Secretary of Defense for Policy and his assistant, Scooter Libby. This was known as the Wolfowitz Doctrine.
8. Osterrieder, ibid., pp. 1224-1225.
9. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 928.
10. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 1358.
11. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 1359.
12. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 1361.
13. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 1382, n. 3620. Typed note by Jürgen von Grone, Bundesarchiv Koblenz BAK/NS 15-302, in: Zur Geschichte der anthroposophischen Bewegung und Gesellschaft in der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus. Dokumente und Briefe. Vol. IV. Ed., Arfst Wagner. Rendsburg 1992, p. 116.)
14. 1938 – Munich Crisis; 1939 – Poland ; 1968 – Prague Spring.
15. Osterrieder, ibid., pp. 1310-1311.
16. See A. Cook, To Kill Rasputin (2005) pp. 215-221.
17. Antony C. Sutton, Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution (1974) pp. 21-34; J. MacGregor and G. Docherty, Prolonging The Agony (2017) pp. 453-475; Osterrieder, ibid., pp. 1316-1318.
18. Osterrieder, ibid., p. 1341.
19. Osterrieder. ibid., pp. 1360-1363; Antony C. Sutton, Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution (1974) pp.121-181.
20. Carolyn Eisenberg, Drawing the Line – The American Decision to Divide Germany 1944-1949 (1996) p.493.
21. Osterrieder, ibid., pp. 1442-1451.
22. Foreign Affairs, Vol. 71 No. 4, pp. 31, 37.
23. Ibid. p. 33.
24. The Economist, 26.12.1992-8.1.1993 end of year issue. Article: ‘The Twenty-first Century: A View from AD 2992’. See T. M. Boardman, Mapping the Millennium – Behind the Plans of the New World Order (2nd ed. 2013), pp.104-160.
25. Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard (1997), p. 118.
29. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QeLu_yyz3tc Watch from 53:50.
30. TIME magazine 24.2.1992 : ‘The Holy Alliance: Ronald Reagan and John Paul II’