Security Council Face Off: China/Russia v. US

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Security Council Face Off: China/Russia v. US

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

At the request of Russia and China, a Thursday Security Council session was held on the Trump regime’s development of short-and-intermediate-range missiles prohibited by the landmark 1987 INF Treaty.

The key pillar of arms control (and earlier ones) are gone because the US unilaterally abandoned its obligations based on Big Lies — the INF pullout announced in February, formal withdrawal occurring on August 2.

Russia and China correctly warned that the White House move threatens international peace and security — what’s true about Washington’s geopolitical agenda overall under both extremist wings of its war party.

Ahead of Thursday’s SC session, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the following:

“The (meeting) was based on the plans announced by the US, which concern the deployment of intermediate-range missiles to the Asia-Pacific region” close to China and North Korea, adding: 

“Clearly, it is only the first step, and in the future, the US may deploy such weapons to other regions of the world, including Europe” near Russia’s border — heightening world tensions more than already.

On August 18, the US war department said the Pentagon “conducted a flight test of a conventionally-configured ground-launched cruise missile at San Nicolas Island, California” — banned by the INF Treaty it failed to explain, adding: 

“The test missile exited its ground mobile launcher and accurately impacted its target after more than 500 kilometers of flight.” 

“Data collected and lessons learned from this test will inform the (war department’s) development of future intermediate-range capabilities.”

During Thursday’s SC session, acting Trump regime envoy Jonathan Cohen repeated long ago debunked Big Lies about Russian INF violations that didn’t occur.

Moscow invited international inspections of missiles objected to by the US. They never took place because Trump regime hardliners pressured their NATO counterparts not to accept the offer.

Sergey Lavrov earlier explained that US INF Treaty violations began 20 years ago under the Clinton co-presidency and continued under Bush/Cheney, Obama and Trump.

Not a shred of credible evidence suggests Russian noncompliance, just the opposite. False accusations are all about giving the US an unjustifiable pretext to abandon its international obligations — what it does time and again.

Trump regime withdrawal from the INF Treaty was planned long before announced last February.

The pullout is all about leaving the US unrestrained to develop and deploy short-and-intermediate-range/nuclear-capable cruise and ballistic missiles close to the borders of its adversaries — notably Russia, China, North Korea, Venezuela and Iran.

During Thursday’s Security Council session, China slammed the Trump regime’s unilateral INF Treaty pullout, its UN envoy Zhang Jun saying the following:

Since agreed on by Soviet Russia and the US in 1987 until abandoned by the White House this month, “the treaty effectively mitigated the arms race on intermediate-range missiles between the US and USSR in Europe and helped to enhance strategic mutual trust between major powers, ease international relations and advance nuclear disarmament process.” 

The above is a true statement – polar opposite the litany of Big Lies recited by the Trump regime’s envoy — typical of how the US operates on the world stage, why it can never be trusted by other nations, allies and adversaries alike.

China: Russia and the US “should have properly handled differences over treaty compliance through dialogue and consultation to earnestly safeguard the effectiveness of the treaty.”

Trump regime hardliners ruled it out so the Pentagon can go its own way unconstrained by international laws, norms, standards, and agreements with other countries.

Unilaterally withdrawing from the INF Treaty “will have a far-reaching negative impact on global strategic balance and stability, regional security in Europe and Asia as well as international arms control regime,” China stressed.

When China, Russia, and other nations call on the US to exercise restraint and observe its international obligations, it falls on deaf ears in Washington virtually always.

Beijing has “no interest (in) and will not be part of…so-called arms control negotiations with the” with the US, its envoy stressed, adding:

“(A)ll its land-based intermediate range missiles are deployed within (its) territory…for defense purposes only and pose no threat to any country.”

China and Russia prioritize world peace and cooperative relations with other countries — at war with none.

The US under both wings of its war party seeks dominion over planet earth, its resources and populations — waging endless preemptive wars of aggression in multiple theaters against nonbelligerent nations threatening no one.

Russia’s deputy UN envoy Dmitry Polyanskiy stressed the importance of the INF Treaty now gone.

After observing its treaty obligations “for a while,” compliance became “inconvenient” for the US side, “believ(ing) in (its) exceptionalism,” said Polyanskiy, adding:

The US is “determined to impose inequitable unilateral schemes of international relations on others” — breaching its international obligations unaccountably.

Putin said Russia won’t breach INF Treaty provisions except in response to US violations — clearly what happened.

Abandonment of arms control treaties “leaves no instrument in the world to curtail the arms race,” Putin stressed.

New START is next on the Trump regime’s chopping block for elimination when expires in February 2021 if DJT is still in power. 

Bolton said extending it is unlikely. Putin said no Trump regime official “is willing to talk about (extending New START) with us.”

Agreed to by the US and Russia in April 2010, it succeeded START I (1991) and the 2002 Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT).

New START limits deployment of strategic nuclear warheads to 1,550, a major reduction from earlier levels, a verification regime agreed on to assure both sides comply with their obligations.

Russia: The US “had been persistently and deliberately violating the INF Treaty for a long time,” pullout intended long before announced.

“(L)ast December, Russia proposed a General Assembly draft resolution in support for the INF Treaty.”

EU/NATO countries, in cahoots with the US, rejected the idea, going along with the Trump regime’s abandonment of the INF Treaty by not allying with Russia to save it.

Moscow warned that the treaty’s demise would “lead to a new nuclear arms race,” missiles with these weapons targeting European cities because leaders of these countries failed to act responsibly.

Congressional budgeting for INF banned missiles was in place “long before this treaty was sentenced to death. And, as always, Russia is to blame,” its UN envoy stressed.

Abandonment of the rule of law and international obligations by the US left the world a far more dangerous place than during the Cold War.

It’s highlighted by the Trump regime’s war secretary Mark Esper, saying the Pentagon is preparing for “high-intensity conflicts against competitors such as Russia and China” — clearly Iran as well.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ Doomsday Clock stands at two minutes to midnight, moved there in January 2018.

The nuclear arms race launched by the Trump regime may get it moved closer to doomsday in the weeks or months ahead.

A Final Comment

On Friday, Vladimir Putin ordered Russia’s Defense Ministry to respond appropriately to threats posed by the Trump regime’s INF Treaty pullout, its August 18 missile test prohibited by treaty, likely more of the same to come, and deployment of these missiles, stressing:

“We have repeatedly pointed out that the deployment of such launchers by the US at its missile defense base in Romania, and their expected deployment in Poland in the near future are a direct and flagrant violation of the treaty on medium and short-range missiles,” adding:

“The US side stubbornly denied this, claiming that land-based MK-41s were supposedly unable to launch sea-based Tomahawk cruise missiles.” 

“Now, the fact of their violation is out in the open and impossible to dispute. They themselves have spoken about it.”

Russia will do whatever it considers necessary to defend its security from a clear threat posed by the US. China will act the same way. So will Iran.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.