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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 7/24/18

Here's the real reason the US must talk to Russia

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From Asia Times

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A new book details why future historians may well identify Putin's landmark March 1 speech as the ultimate game-changer in the 21st century New Great Game in Eurasia


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Future historians may well identify Russian President Vladimir Putin's landmark March 1 speech as the ultimate game-changer in the 21st-century New Great Game in Eurasia. The reason is minutely detailed in Losing Military Supremacy: The Myopia of American Strategic Planning, a new book by Russian military/naval analyst Andrei Martyanov.

Martyanov is uniquely equipped for the task. Born in Baku in the early 1960s, he was a naval officer in the USSR era up to 1990. He moved to the US in the mid-1990s and is now a lab director in an aerospace firm. He belongs to an extremely rarified group: top military/naval analysts specializing in US-Russia.

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From quoting Alexis de Tocqueville and Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace to revisiting the balance of power during the Soviet era and beyond, Martyanov carefully tracks how the only nation on the planet "which can militarily defeat the United States conventionally" has reacted to a situation where any "meaningful dialogue between Russia and America's politicians is virtually impossible."

What is ultimately revealed is not only a case of disregarding basic Sun Tzu -- "if you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles" -- but most of all undiluted hubris, turbocharged, among a series of illusionistic positive feedback loops, by Desert Storm's "turkey shoot" of Saddam Hussein's heavily inflated, woefully trained army.

The United States' industrial-military-intel-security complex profits from a compounded annual budget of roughly US$1 trillion. The only justification for such whopping expenditure is to manufacture a lethal external threat: Russia. That's the key reason the complex will not allow US President Donald Trump even to try to normalize relations with Russia.

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Yet now this is a whole new ball game as the US faces a formidable adversary that, as Martyanov carefully details, deploys five crucial capabilities.

  1. Command, control, communications, computers, intel, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities equal to or better than the US.

  2. Electronic warfare capabilities equal to or better than the US.

  3. New weapons systems equal to or better than the US.

  4. Air defense systems that are more than a match for US air-power.

  5. Long-range subsonic, supersonic and hypersonic cruise missiles that threaten the US Empire of Bases and even the entire US mainland.

So how did we get here?

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Debunking American military mythology

Martyanov argues that Russia, all through the first decade of the millennium, spent enough time "defining herself in terms of enclosed technological cycles, localization and manufacturing."

In contrast, Germany, even with a large, developed economy, "cannot design and build from scratch a state-of-the-art fighter jet," while Russia can. Germany "doesn't have a space industry, and Russia does."

As for those who pass in the US for Russian "experts," they never saw these techno-breakthroughs coming; they "simply have no grasp of the enormous difference between the processes involved in a virtual monetized economy and those involved in manufacturing of the modern combat informational control system or of the cutting-edge fighter jet."

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Pepe Escobar is an independent geopolitical analyst. He writes for RT, Sputnik and TomDispatch, and is a frequent contributor to websites and radio and TV shows ranging from the US to East Asia. He is the former roving correspondent for Asia (more...)
 

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