September 4, 2022
MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey
American and NATO Disinformation and Lies Fuel Never Ending War In
International Military Expert and Strategist Jacques BAUD on the Current
There is perhaps no better-informed
military geostrategic authority on the war in Ukraine today than Swiss intelligence
(Colonel, Swiss Army, ret.). His long and exceptional experiences over the
years in evaluating military intelligence and strategy for a variety of
national and international agencies, in particular the geopolitics of Eastern
Europe after the fall of Communism, have given him an enhanced and realistic
insight into current events in that part of the world.
Recently, Amnesty International—of all sources!—came
out with a critical report, largely ignored by the American and Western media,
which documented the fact that Ukraine is actively engaged in terrorism and war
crimes in its present conflict with Russia. One of the few Western media
sources, Newsweek, quoted the report
“that the Ukrainian military's tactics ‘violate international
humanitarian law and endanger civilians’ by operating weapons out of bases
established in residential areas while civilians are present.” That is exactly
what some of us have been saying and charging for some time, especially in
reference to the accusation of Russian “war crimes” in Mariupol and Bucha, to
mention but two prominent examples.
Now, an international agency, not known for its rightwing
or pro-Russian bias, has come out and admitted the very same thing: it is the
policy of the Ukrainian government to use civilians as human shields, to place
potentially rich military targets in the midst of unprotected civilians, many of
whom become hostages to the Ukrainian military. The objective, of course, is to
inflame Western and American media and political types: “See how evil and
barbaric those Russians are!” goes the refrain. And that disinformation
campaign has been fairly successful, if you watch most of Fox News (e.g.,
General Jack Keene, Brian Kilmeade, etc.) which is joined at the hip with the
entirety of the hysterical (mostly leftwing) anti-Russian media, not to mention
the Deep State cabal in Washington, which includes such deranged armchair
warriors as Senators Lindsey Graham and Chuck Schumer.
Of course, Ukraine has attempted to push back against the
report, employing it minions in the West and in the American media. But
numerous analyses have surfaced, and, although ignored by our media, they
confirm Amnesty International’s study.
In his most recent analysis, Colonel Baud examines the
issue of terrorism as employed as a military tactic, and largely on the part of
the Ukrainian military and its violent militia groups, in the current conflict
with Russia. In an interview with the journal, The Postil, he explores
in detail that question, as well as other critical issues—issues about which
most Americans (and Western Europeans) have little reliable information.
There is a zealously pro-Ukrainian historical blackout
framing Western media. It is openly admitted by Joe Biden and his Secretary of State Anthony Blinken
and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (since they visited Kiev back
in late April, 2022) that the American strategy (and
thus that of our NATO satraps) in Ukraine is “to bleed Russia dry, if it takes
the death of every Ukrainian to do it.” In other words, Ukraine is a kind of
“piege de mort,” a death trap for the Russians to facilitate a radical change
in Kremlin leadership, to install by whatever means possible a pliant
government which will essentially take orders from the globalist cabal which
seeks to implement “the Great Reset.”
Colonel Baud’s interview is detailed, providing accurate
and detailed information that most Westerners and Americans don’t see or hear
in our controlled media. His wide-ranging interview is fairly long—9,000
words—but well worth reading and pondering. The goal of our elites in Eastern
Europe has nothing at all to do with “protecting democracy”—Ukraine is the
least democratic nation in all of Europe. It has everything to do with
cementing globalist domination, a unitary world where agencies like an empowered
World Economic Forum (which Volodymyr Zelensky now pays homage to), the
European Union, and a reconfigured and aggressive NATO, abroad, and an FBI and CIA,
which have become our equivalents of the
East German Stasi or Communist KGB secret police, domestically, control our lives and our destinies.
I pass on Colonel Baud’s interview below:
Interview with Jacques Baud
September 1, 2022 Jacques Baud
We are pleased to bring you
this fresh interview with Jacques Baud, in which we cover what is now happening
in the geopolitical struggle that is the Ukraine-Russia war. As always, Mr.
Baud brings deep insight and clear analysis to the conversation.
Postil (TP): You have just
published your latest book on the war in Ukraine—Operation Z, published by Max Milo. Please tell us a little about
it—what led you to write this book and what do you wish to convey to readers?
Jacques Baud (JB): The aim of this book is to show how the misinformation propagated
by our media has contributed to push Ukraine in the wrong direction. I wrote it
under the motto “from the way we understand crises derives the way we solve
them.” By hiding many aspects of this conflict, the Western media has presented
us with a caricatural and artificial image of the situation, which has resulted
in the polarization of minds. This has led to a widespread mindset that makes
any attempt to negotiate virtually impossible.
The one-sided and biased representation provided by mainstream
media is not intended to help us solve the problem, but to promote hatred of
Russia. Thus, the exclusion of disabled athletes, cats, even Russian
competitions, the dismissal of [symphony] conductors, the de-platforming of
Russian artists, such as Dostoyevsky, or even the renaming
of paintings aims at excluding the Russian population from society! In
France, bank accounts of individuals with Russian-sounding
even blocked. Social networks Facebook and Twitter have systematically blocked
the disclosure of Ukrainian crimes under the pretext of “hate speech” but allow
the call for
violence against Russians.
None of these actions had any effect on the conflict, except to
stimulate hatred and violence against the Russians in our countries. This
manipulation is so bad that we would rather see Ukrainians die than to seek a
diplomatic solution. As Republican Senator Lindsey Graham recently said, it is a matter of letting the Ukrainians fight to the last man.
It is commonly
assumed that journalists work according to standards of quality and ethics to
inform us in the most honest way possible. These standards are set by the
Munich Charter of 1971. While writing my book I found out that no
French-speaking mainstream media in Europe respects this charter as far as
Russia and China are concerned. In fact, they shamelessly support an immoral
policy towards Ukraine, described by Andrés Manuel López Obrador, president of
Mexico, as “We provide the weapons, you provide the corpses!”
this misinformation, I wanted to show that information allowing to provide a
realistic picture of the situation was available as early as February, but that
our media did not relay it to the public. My goal was to show this
In order to
avoid becoming a propagandist myself in favor of one side or the other, I have
relied exclusively on Western, Ukrainian (from Kiev) and Russian opposition
sources. I have not taken any information from the Russian media.
TP: It is commonly said in the West that this war has
“proven” that the Russian army is feeble and that its equipment is useless. Are
these assertions true?
JB: No. After more than six months of war, it can be said that
the Russian army is effective and efficient, and that the quality of its
command & control far exceeds what we see in the West. But our perception
is influenced by a reporting that is focused on the Ukrainian side, and by
distortions of reality.
is the reality on the ground. It should be remembered that what the media call
“Russians” is in fact a Russian-speaking coalition, composed of professional
Russian fighters and soldiers of the popular militias of Donbass. The
operations in the Donbass are mainly carried out by these militias, who fight
on “their” terrain, in towns and villages they know and where they have friends
and family. They are therefore advancing cautiously for themselves, but also to
avoid civilian casualties. Thus, despite the claims of western propaganda, the
coalition enjoys a very good popular support in the areas it occupies.
looking at a map, you can see that the Donbass is a region with a lot of
built-up and inhabited areas, which means an advantage for the defender and a
reduced speed of progress for the attacker in all circumstances.
Secondly, there is the way our media portray the evolution of the
conflict. Ukraine is a huge country and small-scale maps hardly show the
differences from one day to another. Moreover, each side has its own perception
of the progress of the enemy. If we take the example of the situation on March
25, 2022, we can see that the map of the French daily newspaper Ouest-France (a) shows almost no
advance of Russia, as does the Swiss
(b). The map of the Russian website RIAFAN (c) may be propaganda,
but if we compare it with the map of the French
Military Intelligence Directorate (DRM) (d), we see that the Russian media is
probably closer to the truth. All these maps were published on the same day,
but the French newspaper and the Swiss state media did not choose to use the DRM
map and preferred to use a Ukrainian map. This illustrates that our media work
like propaganda outlets.
Figure 1 – Comparison of the maps presented in our media on 25
March 2022. It is this way of presenting the Russian offensive that has led to
the assertion that the Russian army is weak. It also shows that the information
provided by the Russian media seems closer to reality than that given by
Thirdly, our “experts” have themselves determined the objectives
of the Russian offensive. By claiming that Russia wanted to take over Ukraine
and its resources, to take over Kiev in two days, etc., our experts have
literally invented and attributed to the Russians objectives that Putin never
mentioned. In May 2022, Claude Wild, the Swiss ambassador in Kiev, declared on
RTS that the Russians had “lost
the battle for Kiev.” But in reality, there was never a “battle for Kiev.” It is
obviously easy to claim that the Russians did not reach their objectives—if
they never tried to reach them!
West and Ukraine have created a misleading picture of their adversary. In
France, Switzerland and Belgium, none of the military experts on television
have any knowledge of military operations and how the Russians conduct theirs.
Their “expertise” comes from the rumours from the war in Afghanistan or Syria,
which are often merely Western propaganda. These experts have literally
falsified the presentation of Russian operations.
objectives announced as early as February 24 by Russia were the
“demilitarization” and “denazification” of the threat to the populations of
Donbass. These objectives are related to the neutralization of capabilities,
not the seizure of land or resources. To put it bluntly, in theory, to achieve
their goals the Russians do not need to advance—it would be enough if
Ukrainians themselves would come and get killed. In other words, our
politicians and media have pushed Ukraine to defend the terrain like in France
during the First World War. They pushed Ukrainian troops to defend every square
meter of ground in “last stand” situations. Ironically, the West has only made
the Russians’ job easier. In fact, as with the war on terror, Westerners see
the enemy as they would like him to be, not as he is. As Sun Tzu said 2,500
years ago, this is the best recipe for losing a war.
One example is the so-called “hybrid war” that Russia is allegedly
waging against the West. In June 2014, as the West tried to explain Russia’s
(imaginary) intervention in the Donbass conflict, Russia expert Mark Galeotti
“revealed” the existence of a doctrine that would illustrate the Russian concept
Known as the “Gerasimov Doctrine,” it has never really been defined by the West
as to what it consists of and how it could ensure military success. But it is
used to explain how Russia wages war in Donbass without sending troops there
and why Ukraine consistently loses its battles against the rebels. In 2018,
realizing that he was wrong, Galeotti apologized—courageously and
intelligently—in an article titled, “I’m Sorry for Creating the Gerasimov
Doctrine” published in Foreign
and without knowing what it meant, our media and politicians continued to
pretend that Russia was waging a hybrid war against Ukraine and the West. In
other words, we imagined a type of war that does not exist and we prepared
Ukraine for it. This is also what explains the challenge for Ukraine to have a
coherent strategy to counter Russian operations.
The West does
not want to see the situation as it really is. The Russian-speaking coalition
has launched its offensive with an overall strength inferior to that of the
Ukrainians in a ratio of 1-2:1. To be successful when you are outnumbered, you
must create local and temporary superiorities by quickly moving your forces on
This is what
the Russians call “operational art” (operativnoe iskoustvo). This notion is
poorly understood in the West. The term “operational” used in NATO has two
translations in Russian: “operative” (which refers to a command level) and
“operational” (which defines a condition). It is the art of maneuvering
military formations, much like a chess game, in order to defeat a superior
the operation around Kiev was not intended to “deceive” the Ukrainians (and the
West) about their intentions, but to force the Ukrainian army to keep large
forces around the capital and thus “pin them down.” In technical terms, this is
what is called a “shaping operation.” Contrary to the analysis of some
“experts,” it was not a “deception operation,” which would have been conceived
very differently and would have involved much larger forces. The aim was to
prevent a reinforcement of the main body of the Ukrainian forces in the
The main lesson
of this war at this stage confirms what we know since the Second World War: the
Russians master the operational art.
TP: Questions about Russia’s military raises the
obvious question—how good is Ukraine’s military today? And more importantly,
why do we not hear so much about the Ukrainian army?
JB: The Ukrainian servicemen are certainly brave soldiers who
perform their duty conscientiously and courageously. But my personal experience
shows that in almost every crisis, the problem is at the head. The inability to
understand the opponent and his logic and to have a clear picture of the actual
situation is the main reason for failures.
Since the beginning of the Russian offensive, we can distinguish
two ways of conducting the war. On the Ukrainian side, the war is waged in the
political and informational spaces, while on the Russian side the war is waged
in the physical and operational space. The two sides are not fighting in the
same spaces. This is a situation that I described in 2003 in my book, La
guerre asymétrique ou la défaite du vainqueur (Asymmetric War, or the Defeat of the Winner).
The trouble is that at the end of the day, the reality of the terrain prevails.
On the Russian
side, decisions are made by the military, while on the Ukrainian side, Zelensky
is omnipresent and the central element in the conduct of the war. He makes
operational decisions, apparently often against the military’s advice. This
explains the rising tensions between Zelensky and the military. According to
Ukrainian media, Zelensky could dismiss General Valery Zoluzhny by appointing
him Minister of Defence.
army has been extensively trained by American, British and Canadian officers
since 2014. The trouble is that for over 20 years, Westerners have been
fighting armed groups and scattered adversaries and engaged entire armies
against individuals. They fight wars at the tactical level and somehow have
lost the ability to fight at the strategic and operative levels. This explains
partly why Ukraine is waging its war at this level.
But there is a
more conceptual dimension. Zelensky and the West see war as a numerical and
technological balance of forces. This is why, since 2014, the Ukrainians have
never tried to seduce the rebels and they now think that the solution will come
from the weapons supplied by the West. The West provided Ukraine with a few
dozen M777 guns and HIMARS and MLRS missile launchers, while Ukraine had
several thousand equivalent artillery pieces in February. The Russian concept
of “correlation of forces,” takes into account many more factors and is more
holistic than the Western approach. That is why the Russians are winning.
To comply with
ill-considered policies, our media have constructed a virtual reality that
gives Russia the bad role. For those who observe the course of the crisis
carefully, we could almost say they presented Russia as a “mirror image” of the
situation in Ukraine. Thus, when the talk about Ukrainian losses began, Western
communication turned to Russian losses (with figures given by Ukraine).
“counter-offensives” proclaimed by Ukraine and the West in Kharkov and Kherson
in April-May were merely “counter-attacks.” The difference between the two is
that counter-offensive is an operational notion, while counter-attack is a
tactical notion, which is much more limited in scope. These counterattacks were
possible because the density of Russian troops in these sectors was then 1
Battle Group (BTG) per 20 km of front. By comparison, in the Donbass sector,
which was the primary focus, the Russian coalition had 1-3 BTG per km. As for
the great August offensive on Kherson, which was supposed to take over the
south of the country, it seems to have been nothing but a myth to maintain
Today, we see that the claimed Ukrainian successes were in fact
failures. The human and material losses that were attributed to Russia were in
fact more in line with those of Ukraine. In mid-June, David Arakhamia,
Zelensky’s chief negotiator and close adviser, spoke of 200 to 500 deaths per
day, and he mentioned casualties (dead, wounded, captured, deserters) of 1,000
men per day. If we add to this the renewed demands for arms by Zelensky, we
can see that the idea of a victory for Ukraine appears quite an illusion.
Because Russia’s economy was thought to be comparable to Italy’s, it was assumed that it would
be equally vulnerable. Thus, the West—and the Ukrainians—thought that economic
sanctions and political isolation of Russia would quickly cause its collapse,
without passing through a military defeat. Indeed, this is what we understand
from the interview of Oleksei Arestovich, Zelensky’s advisor and spokesman, in
March 2019. This also explains why Zelensky did not sound the alarm in early
2022, as he says in his interview with the Washington
I think he knew that Russia would respond to the offensive Ukraine was
preparing in the Donbass (which is why the bulk of his troops were in that
area) and thought that sanctions would quickly lead to Russia’s collapse and
defeat. This is what Bruno
the French Minister of the Economy, had “predicted.” Clearly, the Westerners
have made decisions without knowing their opponent.
As Arestovich said, the idea was that the defeat of Russia would
be Ukraine’s entry
ticket to NATO. So, the Ukrainians were pushed to prepare an offensive in the
Donbass in order to make Russia react, and thus obtain an easy defeat through
devastating sanctions. This is cynical and shows how much the West—led by the
Americans—has misused Ukraine for its own objectives. The result is that the
Ukrainians did not seek Ukraine’s victory, but Russia’s defeat. This is very different and
explains the Western narrative from the first days of the Russian offensive,
which prophesied this defeat.
But the reality
is that the sanctions did not work as expected, and Ukraine found itself
dragged into combats that it had provoked, but for which it was not prepared to
fight for so long. This is why, from the outset, the Western narrative presented
a mismatch between media reported and the reality on the ground. This had a
perverse effect: it encouraged Ukraine to repeat its mistakes and prevented it
from improving its conduct of operations. Under the pretext of fighting
Vladimir Putin, we pushed Ukraine to sacrifice thousands of human lives
beginning, it was obvious that the Ukrainians were consistently repeating their
mistakes (and even the same mistakes as in 2014-2015), and soldiers were dying
on the battlefield. For his part, Volodymyr Zelensky called for more and more
sanctions, including the most absurd ones, because he was led to believe that
they were decisive.
I am not the only one to have noticed these mistakes, and Western
countries could certainly have stopped this disaster. But their leaders,
excited by the (fanciful) reports of Russian losses and thinking they were
paving the way for regime change, added sanctions to sanctions, turning down
any possibility of negotiation. As the French Minister of Economy Bruno Le
Maire said, the objective was to provoke the collapse of the Russian economy
and make the Russian people suffer. This is a form of state terrorism: the idea is
to make the population suffer in order to push it into revolting against its
leaders (here, Putin). I am not making this up. This mechanism is detailed by
Richard Nephew, head of sanctions at the State Department under Obama and
currently Coordinator on Global Anti-Corruption, in his book entitled, The
Art of Sanctions. Ironically, this is exactly the same logic that the Islamic
State invoked to explain its attacks in France in 2015-2016. France probably
does not encourage terrorism—but it does practice it.
The mainstream media do not present the war as it is, but as they
would like it to be. This is pure wishful thinking. The apparent public support
for the Ukrainian authorities, despite huge losses (some mention 70,000-80,000
fatalities), is achieved by banning
the opposition, a ruthless hunt for officials who
disagree with the government line, and “mirror” propaganda that attributes
to the Russians the same failures as the Ukrainians. All this with the
conscious support of the West.
TP: What should we make of the explosion at the Saki
airbase in the Crimea?
JB: I do not know the details of the current security situation
in Crimea. We know that before February there were cells of volunteer fighters
of Praviy Sektor (a neo-Nazi militia) in Crimea, ready to carry out terrorist-type
attacks. Have these cells been neutralized? I don’t know; but one can assume
so, since there is apparently very little sabotage activity in Crimea. Having
said that, let us not forget that Ukrainians and Russians have lived together
for many decades and there are certainly pro-Kiev individuals in the areas
taken by the Russians. It is therefore realistic to think that there could be
sleeper cells in these areas.
More likely it is a campaign conducted by the Ukrainian security
service (SBU) in the territories occupied by the Russian-speaking coalition.
This is a terrorist campaign targeting pro-Russian Ukrainian personalities and
officials. It follows major changes in the leadership
of the SBU, in Kiev, and in the regions, including
Lvov, Ternopol since July. It is
probably in the context of this same campaign that Darya Dugina was
assassinated on August 21. The objective of this new campaign could be to
convey the illusion that there is an ongoing resistance in the areas taken by
the Russians and thus revive Western aid, which is starting to fatigue. These sabotage
activities do not really have an operational impact and seem more related to a
psychological operation. It may be that these are actions like the one on Snake
Island at the beginning of May, intended to demonstrate to the international
public that Ukraine is acting.
incidents in Crimea indirectly show is that the popular resistance claimed by
the West in February does not exist. It is most likely the action of Ukrainian
and Western (probably British) clandestine operatives. Beyond the tactical
actions, this shows the inability of the Ukrainians to activate a significant
resistance movement in the areas seized by the Russian-speaking coalition.
TP: Zelensky has famously said, “Crimea is Ukrainian and
we will never give it up.” Is this rhetoric, or is there a plan to attack
Crimea? Are there Ukrainian operatives inside Crimea?
JB: First of all, Zelensky changes his opinion very often. In
March 2022, he made a proposal to Russia, stating that he was ready to discuss
a recognition of Russian sovereignty over the peninsula. It was upon the
intervention of the European Union and Boris Johnson on 2
he withdrew his proposal, despite Russia’s favorable interest.
It is necessary
to recall some historical facts. The cession of Crimea to Ukraine in 1954 was
never formally validated by the parliaments of the USSR, Russia and Ukraine
during the communist era. Moreover, the Crimean people agreed to be subject to
the authority of Moscow and no longer of Kiev as early as January 1991. In
other words, Crimea was independent from Kiev even before Ukraine became
independent from Moscow in December 1991.
In July, Aleksei Reznikov, the Ukrainian Minister of Defense,
spoke loudly of a major counter-offensive on Kherson involving one million men
to restore Ukraine’s territorial
In reality, Ukraine has not managed to gather the troops, armor and air cover
needed for this far-fetched offensive. Sabotage actions in Crimea may be a
substitute for this “counter-offensive.” They seem to be more of a
communication exercise than a real military action. These actions seem to be
aimed rather at reassuring Western countries which are questioning the
relevance of their unconditional support to Ukraine.
TP: Would you tell us about the situation around the
Zaporizhzhia nuclear facility?
JB: In Energodar, the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant (ZNPP),
has been the target of several attacks by artillery, which Ukrainians and
Russians attribute to the opposing side. What we know is that the Russian
coalition forces have occupied the ZNPP site since the beginning of March. The
objective at that time was to secure the ZNPP quickly, in order to prevent it
from being caught up in the fighting and thus avoid a nuclear incident. The
Ukrainian personnel who were in charge of it have remained on site and continue
to work under the supervision of the Ukrainian company Energoatom and the
Ukrainian nuclear safety agency (SNRIU). There is therefore no fighting around
It is hard to see why the Russians would shell a nuclear plant
that is under
their control. This allegation is even more peculiar since the Ukrainians
themselves state that there are Russian troops in the premises of the site. According to a French “expert,” the Russians
would attack the power plant they control to cut off the electricity flowing to Ukraine. Not only would there be
simpler ways to cut off the electricity to Ukraine (a switch, perhaps?), but
Russia has not stopped the electricity supply to the Ukrainians since March.
Moreover, I remind you that Russia has not stopped the flow of natural gas to
Ukraine and has continued to pay Ukraine the transit fees for gas to Europe. It
is Zelensky who decided to shut down the
Soyuz pipeline in May.
should be remembered that the Russians are in an area where the population is
generally favorable to them and it is hard to understand why they would take
the risk of a nuclear contamination of the region.
In reality, the
Ukrainians have more credible motives than the Russians that may explain such
attacks against the ZNPP, which are not mutually exclusive: an alternative to
the big counter-offensive on Kherson, which they are not able to implement, and
to prevent the planned referendums in the region. Further, Zelensky’s calls for
demilitarizing the area of the power plant and even returning it to Ukraine
would be a political and operational success for him. One might even imagine
that they seek to deliberately provoke a nuclear incident in order to create a
“no man’s land” and thus render the area unusable for the Russians.
By bombing the plant, Ukraine could also be trying to pressure the
West to intervene
in the conflict, under the pretext that Russia is seeking to disconnect the plant
from the Ukrainian
power grid before the fall. This suicidal behavior—as stated by UN
Secretary General António Guterres—would be in line with the war waged by
Ukraine since 2014.
There is strong evidence that the attacks on Energodar are
Ukrainian. The fragments of projectiles fired at the site from the other side
of the Dnieper are of Western origin. It seems that they come from British BRIMSTONE missiles, which are precision missiles,
whose use is monitored by the British. Apparently, the West is aware of the
Ukrainian attacks on the ZNPP. This might explain why Ukraine is not very
supportive of an international
commission of inquiry and why Western countries are putting unrealistic conditions
for sending investigators from the IAEA, an agency that has not shown much
integrity so far.
TP: It is reported that Zelensky is freeing criminals
to fight in this war? Does this mean that Ukraine’s army is not as strong as
JB: Zelensky faces the same problem as the authorities that
emerged from Euromaidan in 2014. At that time, the military did not want to
fight because they did not want to confront their Russian-speaking compatriots.
According to a report by the British Home Office, reservists
overwhelmingly refuse to attend recruitment sessions. In
October-November 2017, 70% of conscripts do not show up for recall. Suicide
According to the chief Ukrainian military prosecutor Anatoly Matios, after four
years of war in the Donbass, 615 servicemen had
committed suicide. Desertions have increased and reached up to 30% of the forces in certain
operational areas, often in favor of the rebels.
reason, it became necessary to integrate more motivated, highly politicized,
ultra-nationalistic and fanatical fighters into the armed forces to fight in
the Donbass. Many of them are neo-Nazis. It is to eliminate these fanatical
fighters that Vladimir Putin has mentioned the objective of “denazification.”
problem is slightly different. The Russians have attacked Ukraine and the
Ukrainian soldiers are not a priori opposed to fighting them. But they realize
that the orders they receive are not consistent with the situation on the
battlefield. They understood that the decisions affecting them are not linked
to military factors, but to political considerations. Ukrainian units are mutinying
en masse and are increasingly refusing to fight. They say they feel abandoned
by their commanders and that they are given missions without the necessary
resources to execute them. That’s why it becomes necessary to send men who are
Because they are condemned, they can be kept under pressure. This is the same
principle as Marshal Konstantin Rokossovki, who was sentenced to death by
Stalin, but was released from prison in 1941 to fight against the Germans. His
death sentence was lifted only after Stalin’s death in 1956.
In order to
overshadow the use of criminals in the armed forces, the Russians are accused
of doing the same thing. The Ukrainians and the Westerners consistently use
“mirror” propaganda. As in all recent conflicts, Western influence has not led
to a moralization of the conflict.
TP: Everyone speaks of how corrupt Putin is? But what about
Zelensky? Is he the “heroic saint” that we are all told to admire?
JB: In October 2021, the Pandora Papers showed that
Ukraine and Zelensky were the most corrupt in Europe and practiced tax evasion
on a large scale. Interestingly, these documents were apparently published with
the help of an American intelligence agency, and Vladimir Putin is not
mentioned. More precisely, the documents mention individuals “associated” with
him, who are said to have links with undisclosed assets, which could belong to
a woman, who is believed to have had a child with him. Yet, when our media are
reporting on these documents, they routinely put a picture of Vladimir Putin,
but not of Volodymyr Zelensky.
Figure 2 – Although he is not mentioned in the Pandora Papers,
Vladimir Putin is consistently associated with them. Whereas Volodymyr Zelensky
is never mentioned in our media, even though he is widely implicated.
I am not in a
position to assess how corrupt Zelensky is. But there is no doubt that the
Ukrainian society and its governance are. I contributed modestly to a NATO
“Building Integrity” program in Ukraine and discovered that none of the
contributing countries had any illusions about its effectiveness, and all saw
the program as a kind of “window dressing” to justify Western support.
It is unlikely that the billions paid by the West to Ukraine will
reach the Ukrainian people. A recent CBS News report stated that only 30-40% of
the weapons supplied by the West make it to the battlefield. The rest enriches
mafias and other corrupt people. Apparently, some high-tech Western weapons
have been sold to the Russians, such as the French CAESAR system and presumably
the American HIMARS. The CBS News report was censored to avoid undermining
Western aid, but the fact remains that the US
refused to supply MQ-1C drones to Ukraine for this reason.
Ukraine is a
rich country, yet today it is the only country in the former USSR with a lower
GDP than it had at the collapse of the Soviet Union. The problem is therefore
not Zelensky himself, but the whole system, which is deeply corrupted, and
which the West maintains for the sole purpose of fighting Russia.
elected in April 2019 on the program of reaching an agreement with Russia. But
nobody let him carry out his program. The Germans and the French deliberately
prevented him from implementing the Minsk agreements. The transcript of the telephone
conversation of 20 February 2022 between Emmanuel Macron and Vladimir Putin
shows that France deliberately kept Ukraine away from the solution. Moreover,
in Ukraine, neo-Nazi political forces have publicly threatened him with death.
Dmitry Yarosh, commander of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army, declared in May 2019
that Zelensky would
be hanged if
he carried out his program. In other words, Zelensky is trapped between his
idea of reaching an agreement with Russia and the demands of the West. Moreover,
the West realizes that its strategy of war through sanctions has failed. As the
economic and social problems increase, the West will find it harder to back
down without losing face. A way out for Britain, the US, the EU, or France
would be to remove Zelensky. That is why, with the deteriorating situation in
Ukraine, I think Zelensky starts to realize that his life is threatened. At the
end of the day, Zelensky is a poor guy, because his best enemies are those on
whom he depends: the Western world.
TP: There are many videos (gruesome ones) on social
media of Ukrainian soldiers engaging in serious war crimes? Why is there a
“blind spot” in the West for such atrocities?
JB: First of all, we must be clear: in every war, every
belligerent commit war crimes. Military personnel who deliberately commit such
crimes dishonor their uniform and must be punished. The problem arises when war
crimes are part of a plan or result from orders given by the higher command.
This was the case when the Netherlands let its military allow the Srebrenica
massacre in 1995; the torture in Afghanistan by Canadian and British troops, not to mention
the countless violations of international humanitarian law by the United States
in Afghanistan, Iraq, Guantanamo and elsewhere with the complicity of Poland,
Lithuania or Estonia. If these are Western values, then Ukraine is in the right
In Ukraine, political crime has become commonplace, with the
complicity of the West. Thus, those who are in favor of a negotiation are
eliminated. This is the case of Denis Kireyev, one of the Ukrainian negotiators,
assassinated on March 5 by the Ukrainian security service (SBU) because he was
considered too favorable
to Russia and as a traitor. The same thing happened to Dmitry Demyanenko, an officer of the
SBU, who was assassinated on March 10, also because
he was too favorable to an agreement with Russia. Remember that this is a
country that considers that receiving or giving Russian humanitarian aid is “collaborationism.”
On 16 March 2022, a journalist on TV channel Ukraine 24 referred
to the Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann and called for the massacre of Russian-speaking children. On 21 March, the military
doctor Gennadiy Druzenko declared on the same channel that he had ordered his
doctors to castrate
Russian prisoners of war. On social networks, these statements quickly became propaganda
for the Russians and the two Ukrainians apologized for having said so, but not
for the substance. Ukrainian crimes were beginning to be revealed on social
networks, and on 27 March Zelensky feared that this would jeopardize Western
support. This was followed—rather opportunely—by the Bucha massacre on 3 April,
the circumstances of which remain unclear.
Britain, which then had the chairmanship of the UN Security
Council, refused three times the Russian request to
set up an international commission of enquiry into the crimes of Bucha.
Ukrainian socialist MP Ilya Kiva revealed on Telegram that
the Bucha tragedy was planned by the British MI6 special services and implemented by the
problem is that the Ukrainians have replaced the “operational art” with
brutality. Since 2014, in order to fight the autonomists, the Ukrainian
government has never tried to apply strategies based on “hearts & minds,”
which the British used in the 1950s-1960s in South-East Asia, which were much
less brutal but much more effective and long-lasting. Kiev preferred to conduct
an Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) in the Donbass and to use the same strategies
as the Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan. Fighting terrorists authorizes all
kinds of brutality. It is the lack of a holistic approach to the conflict that
led to the failure of the West in Afghanistan, Iraq and Mali.
Operation (COIN) requires a more sophisticated and holistic approach. But NATO
is incapable of developing such strategies as I have seen first-hand in
Afghanistan. The war in Donbass has been brutal for 8 years and has resulted in
the death of 10,000 Ukrainian citizens plus 4,000 Ukrainian military personnel.
By comparison, in 30 years, the conflict in Northern Ireland resulted in 3,700
deaths. To justify this brutality, the Ukrainians had to invent the myth of a
Russian intervention in Donbass.
The problem is that the philosophy of the new Maidan leaders was
to have a racially
In other words, the unity of the Ukrainian people was not to be achieved
through the integration of communities, but through the exclusion of
communities of “inferior races.” An idea that would no doubt have pleased the
grandfathers of Ursula von der Leyen and Chrystia Freeland! This explains why
Ukrainians have little empathy for the country’s Russian, Magyar and
Romanian-speaking minorities. This in turn explains why Hungary and Romania do
not want their territories to be used for the supply of arms to Ukraine. This
is why shooting at their own citizens to intimidate them is not a problem for
the Ukrainians. This explains the spraying of thousands of PFM-1 (“butterfly”)
anti-personnel mines, which look like toys, on the Russian-speaking city of
Donetsk in July 2022. This type of mine is used by a defender, not an attacker
in its main area of operation. Moreover, in this area, the Donbass militias are
fighting “at home,” with populations they know personally.
I think that
war crimes have been committed on both sides, but that the media coverage has
been very different. Our media have reported extensively about crimes (true or
false) attributed to Russia. On the other hand, they have been extremely silent
about Ukrainian crimes. We do not know the whole truth about the Bucha
massacre, but the available evidence supports the hypothesis that Ukraine
staged the event to cover up its own crimes. By keeping these crimes quiet, our
media have been complicit with them and have created a sense of impunity that
has encouraged the Ukrainians to commit further crimes.
TP: Latvia wants the West (America) to designate
Russia a “terrorist state.” What do you make of this? Does this mean that the
war is actually over, and Russia has won?
JB: The Estonian and Latvian demands are in response to
Zelensky’s call to designate Russia as a terrorist state. Interestingly, they
come at the same time a Ukrainian terrorist campaign is being unleashed in
Crimea, the occupied zone of Ukraine and the rest of Russian territory. It is
also interesting that Estonia was apparently complicit in the attack on Darya
Dugina in August 2022.
It seems that Ukrainians communicate in a mirror image of the
crimes they commit or the problems they have, in order to hide them. For
example, in late May 2022, as the Azovstal surrender in Mariupol showed
neo-Nazi fighters, they began to allege that there are neo-Nazis in the Russian
army. In August 2022, when Kiev was carrying out actions of a terrorist nature
against the Energodar power plant in Crimea and on Russian territory, Zelensky
Russia to be considered a terrorist state.
Zelensky continues to believe that he can only solve his problem by defeating
Russia and that this defeat depends on sanctions against Russia. Declaring
Russia a terrorist state would lead to further isolation. That is why he is
making this appeal. This shows that the label “terrorist” is more political
than operational, and that those who make such proposals do not have a very
clear vision of the problem. The problem is that it has implications for
international relations. This is why the US State Department is concerned that
Zelensky’s request will be implemented by Congress.
TP: One of the sadder outcomes of this Ukraine-Russia
conflict is how the West has shown the worst of itself. Where do you think we
will go from here? More of the same, or will there be changes that will have to
be made in regards to NATO, neutral countries which are no longer neutral, and
the way the West seeks to “govern” the world?
JB: This crisis reveals several things. First, that NATO and the
European Union are only instruments of US foreign policy. These institutions no
longer act in the interests of their members, but in the interests of the US.
The sanctions adopted under American pressure are backfiring on Europe, which
is the big loser in this whole crisis: it suffers its own sanctions and has to
deal with the tensions resulting from its own decisions.
taken by Western governments reveal a generation of leaders who are young and
inexperienced (such as Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin); ignorant, yet
thinking they are smart (such as French President Emmanuel Macron); doctrinaire
(such as European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen); and fanatical
(such as the leaders of the Baltic States). They all share some of the same
weaknesses, not least of which is their inability to manage a complex crisis.
When the head
is unable to understand the complexity of a crisis, we respond with guts and
dogmatism. This is what we see happening in Europe. The Eastern European
countries, especially the Baltic States and Poland, have shown themselves to be
loyal servants of American policy. They have also shown immature,
confrontational, and short-sighted governance. These are countries that have
never integrated Western values, that continue to celebrate the forces of the Third
Reich and discriminate against their own Russian-speaking population.
I am not even
mentioning the European Union, which has been vehemently opposed to any
diplomatic solution and has only added fuel to the fire.
The more you
are involved in a conflict, the more you are involved in its outcome. If you
win, all is well. But if the conflict is a failure, you will bear the burden.
This is what has happened to the United States in recent conflicts and what is
happening in Ukraine. The defeat of Ukraine is becoming the defeat of the West.
Another big loser in this conflict is clearly Switzerland. Its
neutral status has suddenly lost all credibility. Early August, Switzerland and
Ukraine concluded an agreement that would allow the Swiss embassy in Moscow to
offer protection to Ukrainian citizens in Russia. However, in order to enter
into force, it has to be recognized by Russia. Quite logically, Russia
declared that “Switzerland had unfortunately
lost its status as a neutral state and could not act as an intermediary or
representative.” This is a very serious development because
neutrality is not simply a unilateral declaration. It must be accepted and
recognized by all to be effective. Yet Switzerland not only aligned itself with
the Western countries but was even more extreme than them. It can be said that
in a few weeks, Switzerland has ruined a policy that has been recognized for
almost 170 years. This is a problem for Switzerland, but it may also be a
problem for other countries. A neutral state can offer a way out of a crisis.
Today, Western countries are looking for a way out that would allow them to get
closer to Russia in the perspective of an energy crisis without losing face.
Turkey has taken on this role, but it is limited, as it is part of NATO.
Figure 3 – Countries and organizations that applied sanctions to
Russia. Although Switzerland is a neutral country, it stands on the first
place. According to own sources, this was done under pressure and blackmail
from the United States. Nevertheless, this is a severe blow to the very
principle of neutrality that will have consequences in other future conflicts.
The West has
created an Iron Curtain 2.0 that will affect international relations for years
to come. The West’s lack of strategic vision is astonishing. While NATO is
aligning itself with US foreign policy and reorienting itself towards China,
Western strategy has only strengthened the Moscow-Beijing axis.
TP: What do you think this war ultimately means for
Europe, the US and China?
JB: In order to answer this question, we first must answer
another question: “Why is this conflict more condemnable and sanctionable than
previous conflicts started by the West?”
disasters of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Mali, the rest of the world expected
the West to help resolve this crisis with common sense. The West responded in
exactly the opposite way to these expectations. Not only has no one been able
to explain why this conflict was more reprehensible than previous ones, but the
difference in treatment between Russia and the United States has shown that
more importance is attached to the aggressor than to the victims. Efforts to
bring about the collapse of Russia contrast with the total impunity of
countries that have lied to the UN Security Council, practiced torture, caused
the deaths of over a million people and created 37 million refugees.
in treatment went unnoticed in the West. But the “rest of the world” has
understood that we have moved from a “law-based international order” to a
“rules-based international order” determined by the West.
On a more
material level, the confiscation of Venezuelan gold by the British in 2020, of
Afghanistan’s sovereign funds in 2021, and then of Russia’s sovereign funds in
2022 by the US, has raised the mistrust of the West’s allies. This shows that
the non-Western world is no longer protected by law and depends on the goodwill
of the West.
is probably the starting point for a new world order. The world is not going to
change all at once, but the conflict has raised the attention of the rest of
the world. For when we say that the “international community” condemns Russia,
we are in fact talking about 18% of the world’s population.
Some actors traditionally close to the West are gradually moving
away from it. On 15 July 2022, Joe Biden visited Mohammed bin Salman (MbS) with
two objectives: to prevent Saudi Arabia from moving closer to Russia and China,
and to ask him to increase its oil production. But four days earlier, MbS made
an official request
to become a member of the BRICS, and a week later, on 21 July, MbS called Vladimir Putin to confirm that he would
stand by the OPEC+ decision. In other words: no oil production increase. It was
a slap in the face of the West and of its most powerful representative.
has now decided to accept Chinese currency as payment for its oil. This is a
major event, which tends to indicate a loss of confidence in the dollar. The
consequences are potentially huge. The petrodollar was established by the US in
the 1970s to finance its deficit. By forcing other countries to buy dollars, it
allows the US to print dollars without being caught in an inflationary loop.
Thanks to the petrodollar, the US economy—which is essentially a consumer
economy—is supported by the economies of other countries around the world. The
demise of the petrodollar could have disastrous consequences for the US
economy, as former Republican Senator Ron Paul puts it.
the sanctions have brought China and Russia, both targeted by the West, closer
together. This has accelerated the formation of a Eurasian bloc and
strengthened the position of both countries in the world. India, which the US
has scorned as a “second-class” partner of the “Quad,” has moved closer to
Russia and China, despite disputes with the latter.
Today, China is
the main provider of infrastructure in the Third World. In particular, its way
of interacting with African countries is more in line with the expectations of
these countries. Collaboration with former colonial powers such as France and
American imperialist paternalism are no longer welcome. For example, the
Central African Republic and Mali have asked France to leave their countries
and have turned to Russia.
At the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit, the
$150 million contribution to “strengthen its position in the broader
geopolitical competition with China.” But in November 2021, President Xi
Jinping offered $1.5 billion to the same countries to fight the pandemic and
promote economic recovery. By using its money to wage war, the US has no money
left to forge and consolidate alliances. The West’s loss of influence stems
from the fact that it continues to treat the “rest of the world” like “little
children” and neglects the usefulness of good diplomacy.
The war in
Ukraine is not the trigger for these phenomena, which started a few years ago,
but it is most certainly an eye-opener and accelerator.
TP: The western media has been pushing that Putin may
be seriously ill. If Putin suddenly dies, would this make any difference at all
to the war?
JB: It seems that Vladimir Putin is a unique medical case in the
world: he has stomach
cancer, leukemia, an unknown but incurable and terminal
phase disease, and is reportedly
already dead. Yet in July 2022, at the Aspen Security Forum, CIA Director
William Burns said that Putin was “too
and that there was “no information to suggest that he is in
poor health.” This shows how those who claim to be journalists work! This is
wishful thinking and, on the higher end of the spectrum, it echoes the calls
for terrorism and the physical
elimination of Vladimir Putin. The West has personalized Russian
politics through Putin, because he is the one who promoted the reconstruction
of Russia after the Yeltsin years. Americans like to be champions when there
are no competitors and see others as enemies. This is the case with Germany,
Europe, Russia and China.
“experts” know little about Russian politics. For in reality, Vladimir Putin is
more of a “dove” in the Russian political landscape. Given the climate that we
have created with Russia, it would not be impossible that his disappearance
would lead to the emergence of more aggressive forces. We should not forget
that countries like Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland or Georgia have never
developed European democratic values. They still have discriminatory policies
towards their ethnic Russians that are far from European values, and they behave
like immature agents provocateurs. I think that if Putin were to disappear for
some reason, the conflicts with these countries would take on a new dimension.
TP: How unified is Russia presently? Has the war
created a more serious opposition than what previously existed within Russia?
JB: No, on the contrary. The American and European leaders have
a poor understanding of their enemy: the Russian people are very patriotic and
cohesive. Western obsession to ”punish” the Russian people has only brought them
closer to their leaders. In fact, by seeking to divide Russian society in an
effort to overthrow the government, Western sanctions—including the dumbest
ones—have confirmed what the Kremlin has been saying for years: that the West
has a profound hatred of Russians. What was once said to be a lie is now
confirmed in Russian opinion. The consequence is that the people’s trust in the
government has grown stronger.
The approval ratings given by the very independent Levada
by the Russian authorities as a “foreign agent”) show that public opinion has
tightened around Vladimir Putin and the Russian government. In January 2022,
Vladimir Putin’s approval rating was 69% and the government’s was 53%. Today,
Putin’s approval rating has been stable at around 83% since March, and the
government’s is at 71%. In January, 29% disapproved of Vladimir Putin’s
decisions, in July it was only 15%.
According to the Levada Centre, even the Russian operation in
Ukraine enjoys a majority of favorable opinions. In March, 81% of Russians were
in favor of the operation; this figure dropped to 74%, probably due to the
impact of sanctions at the end of March, and then it went back up. In July
2022, the operation had 76%
Figure 4 – Not all Russians
support the special operation in Ukraine, but three quarters of the population
do. Ukrainian war crimes, Western sanctions and the good management of the
economy by the Russian authorities explain this support. [Source]
The problem is that our journalists have neither culture nor journalistic
discipline and they replace them with their own beliefs. It is a form of
conspiracy that aims to create a false reality based on what one believes and
not on the facts. For example, few know (or want to know) that Aleksey Navalny
said he would
not return Crimea to Ukraine. The West’s actions have completely wiped out the opposition, not
because of “Putin’s repression,” but because in Russia, resistance to foreign
interference and the West’s deep contempt for Russians is a bipartisan cause.
Exactly like the hatred of Russians in the West. This is why personalities like
Aleksey Navalny, who never had a very high popularity, have completely
disappeared from the popular media landscape.
if the sanctions have had a negative impact on the Russian economy, the way the
government has handled things since 2014 shows a great mastery of economic
mechanisms and a great realism in assessing the situation. There is a rise in
prices in Russia, but it is much lower than in Europe, and while Western
economies are raising their key interest rates, Russia is lowering its own.
journalist Marina Ovsyannikova has been exemplified as an expression of the
opposition in Russia. Her case is interesting because, as usual, we do not say
everything. On 14 March 2022, she provoked international applause by
interrupting the Russian First Channel news program with a poster calling
the war in Ukraine. She was arrested and fined $280.
In May, the German newspaper Die Welt offered her a job in Germany, but in Berlin, pro-Ukrainian
activists demonstrated to get the newspaper to
end its collaboration
The media outlet Politico even suggested that she might be an agent
of the Kremlin! As a result, in June 2022, she left Germany to live in Odessa,
her hometown. But instead of being grateful, the Ukrainians put her on
the Mirotvorets blacklist where
she is accused of treason, “participation in the Kremlin’s special information
and propaganda operations” and “complicity with the invaders.”
The Mirotvorets website is a “hit list” for politicians,
journalists or personalities who do not share the opinion of the Ukrainian
government. Several of the people on the list have been murdered. In October
2019, the UN requested
the closure of the site, but this was refused
by the Rada. It should be noted that none of our mainstream media has
condemned this practice, which is very far from the values they claim to
defend. In other words, our media support these practices that used to be
attributed to South American regimes.
Figure 5 – Darya Dugina marked as “Liquidated.”
Ovsyannikova then returned to Russia, where she demonstrated against the war, calling Putin a “killer,” and
was arrested by the police and placed under house arrest for three months. At
this point, our media protested.
It is worth noting that Russian journalist Darya Dugina, the
victim of a bomb attack in Moscow on 21 August 2022, was on the Mirotvorets
list and her file was marked “liquidated.” Of course, no Western media
mentioned that she was targeted by the Mirotvorets website, which is considered
to be linked to the SBU, as this would tend to support Russia’s accusations.
German journalist Alina Lipp, whose revelations about Ukrainian
and Western crimes in the Donbass are disturbing, has been placed on the
Moreover, Alina Lipp was sentenced in absentia to three years in prison by a
German court for claiming that Russian troops had “liberated” areas in Ukraine
and thus [she had] “glorified criminal activities.” As can be seen, the German
authorities are functioning like the neo-Nazi elements in Ukraine. Today’s
politicians are a credit to their grandparents!
conclude that even if there are some people who oppose the war, Russian public
opinion is overwhelmingly behind its government. Western sanctions have only
strengthened the credibility of the Russian president.
point is not to take the same approach as our media and replace the hatred of
Russia with that of Ukraine. On the contrary, it is to show that the world is
not either black or white and that Western countries have taken the situation
too far. Those who are compassionate about Ukraine should have pushed our
governments to implement the agreed political solutions in 2014 and 2015. They
haven’t done anything and are now pushing Ukraine to fight. But we are no
longer in 2021. Today, we have to accept the consequences of our non-decisions
and help Ukraine to recover. But this must not be done at the expense of its
Russian-speaking population, as we have done until now, but with the
Russian-speaking people, in an inclusive manner. If I look at the media in
France, Switzerland and Belgium, we are still very far from the goal.
TP: Thank you so very much, Mr. Baud, for this most
[This report appeared in the September 2022 online edition of THE