Vladimir? Who would name a baby, Vladimir?
In 2019, the Trump Administration asked Professor Angelo Codevilla, a professor emeritus of International Relations at Boston University, to write a memo as to what a truly "America first" foreign policy ought to be. A few months later, de Codevilla responded with 65,000 words of wisdom. Not surprisingly, Professor de Codevilla was prescient with regard to what U.S. relations with Russia, Ukraine, the Baltic Nations, and NATO ought to be.
Starting with the Clinton administration, de Codevilla faulted the U.S. for not understanding the post-Soviet ambitions and limitations of Russia. For example, the U.S. did not understand Russiaís fear of invasion from the West or how Russians feel that they are the saviors of Western Civilization by turning back the Mongol hoards, by preserving Christianity from destruction by the Ottoman Muslim zealots, by helping free Europe from the rule of Napoleon, and by making possible the Allied victory in World War II by defeating Hitlerís invasion of the USSR.
Moreover, some Russians, President Putin in particular, think Russiaís return to true world power status requires Ukraine and the Baltic States back under Russian control. Or, at least, looking more toward Russia than to the West. Professor de Codevilla faults all post-Soviet American administrations, to include that of President G.W. Bush, for pushing the USSRís former satellite nations toward membership in NATO.
Okay, Professor. But after Putin began to dismember Georgia and then seized Crimea, can the former Soviet satellite states be blamed for wanting a closer relationship with NATO?
"U.S. liberals, wrote de Codevilla, "believed the Soviet Unionís dissolution was impossible, and conservatives flatter themselves that they caused it. ...
Then, our establishment was well-nigh unanimous that Russia would evolve in a liberal direction. A decade of deep but ignorant involvement in Russiaís internal affairs followed...
"The Clinton administrationís combined ignorance and self-contradiction by trying to load onto Russia the hopes that the U.S. establishment had long entertained about global co-domination with the Soviets, while on the other hand they pushed NATO to Russiaís borders in the Baltic States and interfered massively in Ukraine. Russians came to see America as an enemy. Few Americans understood Vladimir Putinís 1998-99 rise as the reassertion of a bankrupt, humiliated, resentful Great Russian people...
"Then, for what seems to have been the most tactical of domestic political calculations, the Obama administration and therefore the U.S. establishment decided to try explaining the course and results of the 2016 U.S. election campaign as íRussiaís attack on our democracy.í"
One might add when the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign paid for the Russia-Trump Hoax, our relations with Russia, which felt it had been defamed by the Hoax, were made worse.
Unfortunately, Professor de Codevilla passed away in September 2021. So, we donít know what Professor Codevilla would say about Vladimir Putinís invasion of Ukraine. But the ever-prescient Professor de Codevilla wrote this: "As always, Ukraine is where Russiaís domestic and foreign policy intersect. With Ukraine (and the Baltic states), Russia is potentially a world power. Without it, much less. PostĖSoviet Russiaís horizons have shrunk because the twentieth centuryís events forever severed Ukraineís and the Baltic statesí peoples from Russia." In other words, it is doubtful any Ukrainian babies will be named Vladimir. Not in this Century, anyway.
Suggested listening: William Hamilton, Ph.D., will be a guest on KOA (850AM and 94.1FM) Radio from 2:00 PM to 3 PM Mountain Time, Monday, March 14, with famed talk show host, Mike Rosen, (who is filling in for Mandy Connell). Bill Hamilton and Mike Rosen will be discussing the war in Ukraine. Hamiltonís recent book on the American experience in Vietnam, War During Peace: A Strategy for Defeat, will be discussed, as well. If you are not in the KOA radio broadcast area, you can still listen on your computer or laptop. Just go to this website: https://www.iheart.com/live/koa-389/?sc=inferno&campid=a&pname=KOA-AM Click on the red play button in the upper left. Please spread the word.
©2022. William Hamilton.