Reprinted from Paul Craig Roberts Website
So concludes America's leading Russian expert, Professor Stephen Cohen (Princeton and New York University).
Professor Cohen asks if Washington is sleepwalking and needs to wake up or whether Washington has gone crazy and intends war.
Pepe Escobar advises Washington to "beware what you wish for: Russia is ready for war."
Escobar reports that recently the Rand Corporation, "essentially a CIA outpost," concluded that "Russia could over-run NATO in a mere 60 hours, if not less." On the level of nukes and missile systems, Russia is four generations ahead of the US military/security complex, which is mainly interested in inflating profits with cost overruns. US weapons systems are simply outclassed.
Nevertheless, the Russian high command is concerned with the Russian government's low-key response to Washington's aggression. The generals blame the "Atlanticists Integrationists" who infect Putin's government. This faction is believed to be organized around Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and believes Russia should make concessions to Washington in order to be accepted as part of the West. The incompetent Russian central bank and neoliberal economists are part of the faction whose goal is to be part of the West regardless of its impact on Russian independence from Washington's Empire.
Stephen Cohen and Alastair Crooke, a former British secret agent, almost alone in the West have noticed that the Russian military and the predominant part of the government that emphasizes national sovereignty are putting pressure on President Putin to eliminate those in the government who are willing to compromise Russia's independence in order to gain acceptance by Washington.
This has been my own opinion for some time. It is impossible to adequately stand up to an external threat when unreliable elements are part of the threatened government.
If Putin is forced to remove Washington's agents from his government, as he must do if Russia is to survive Washington's plots, he must not let them leave Russia. If they escape, they will end up in Washington to be used as Washington's Russian government in exile. If Putin doesn't want to put them on trial for treason, then a form of national house arrest would be a solution.
Alastair Crooke writes that Washington is miscalulating by seeking unipolar hegemony and, thus, is forcing Putin into the camp of the nationalists who value Russia's sovereignty more than Western acceptance. Washington's use of NATO in an effort to corner Russia with military buildups on Russia's land and sea borders is forcing compromise out of Russia's response to Washington's aggression.
Regardless of Escobar's description of Russian military superiority over the West, Russian independence is between a rock and a hard place. The rock is the American neoconservatives' determination to achieve hegemony over Russia. The hard place is those within the Russian government who are more Western than Russian in their orientation.
If Trump becomes US president, there is some possibility, perhaps, that the neoconservatives will cease to dominate US foreign and military policies. Should this turn out to be the case, the Russian nationalists might ease their pressure on Putin to remove the Atlanticist Integrationists from the government.
If Hillary becomes US president, the neoconservative threat to Russia will escalate. The Atlanticist Integrationists will be eliminated from the Russian government, and Russia will move to full war standing.
Remember what an unprepared Russia did to the German Wehrmacht, at that time the most powerful army ever assembled. Imagine what a prepared Russia would do to the crazed Hillary and the incompetent neoconservatives.
As I have previously written, pushing Russia to war means the demise of the US and Europe and, considering the destructive power of nuclear weapons, most likely of all life on earth.