Thursday, June 09, 2022

I Guess we Need a "Bad Ukraine Takes" Series

About the only institution I hold is more contempt than the UN in so far as its inability to do anything well related to its core mission is probably the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Over at the National Interest, Ramon Marks just about gives me an aneurism.

How does one start here? I don't have much whitespace in my calendar today, so let me just pull this jewel out. 

The West is going to have to figure out how to resolve the Russo-Ukrainian War while simultaneously bringing lasting stability to Ukraine and Europe without pushing a paranoid Russia further into China’s arms. A Congress of Vienna-type approach could be an option under the multilateral framework of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), founded in 1975. Headquartered in Vienna, over fifty-seven countries are members of the OSCE, including Russia, NATO countries, Finland, Sweden, as well as peripheral Eurasian states such as Mongolia. The OSCE might be the only realistic diplomatic framework under which all relevant parties might try to begin to address the centuries-old problem posed by Russia’s deep-seated fears of the West.

What, you mean this OSCE from the third week of FEB?

Staff of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which has been monitoring the situation in eastern Ukraine, began to pull out of the rebel-held city of Donetsk on Sunday as fears of a possible Russian invasion grew.

A Reuters journalist saw several armoured cars being loaded suitcases and leaving the mission's headquarters.

The OSCE said in a statement that "certain participating states" had told their citizens at the mission to leave within the next days. It did not name the countries but said the mission would carry on with its work.

These Model UN rent seeking types are just plain useless unless to anyone but themselves. They claim expertise based on a record of failure - over-credentialed and underperforming. 

They craft Tiffany-clad agreements that don't survive the next dawn and then complain at the next obscure conference sponsored by some over-capitalized government bureau that they just didn't have a chance...etc...etc...but next time...

This is all malformed by iffy history;

Despite the suffering and destruction inflicted by these French invasions, when it came time to make peace, the victorious powers were generous. The Quadruple Alliance, the victorious coalition of Great Britain, Austria, Russia, and Prussia, did not exact punishment or revenge on France. Instead, it moved to create a better structure to maintain stability among European nation-states. France was not forced to pay crippling indemnities to the victors and its borders were reestablished as they were in 1789, not carved up by occupation forces. In 1818, a defeated France was welcomed into the Holy Alliance (the Quadruple Alliance’s successor). French king Louis XVIII, who was restored to the throne after Napoleon’s defeat, even appointed Talleyrand as his foreign minister, the same position the cold-eyed realist had held throughout the French Revolution and under Napoleon. Following agreements reached at the 1815 Congress of Vienna, the Holy Alliance engineered the longest period of peace that Europe had known, founded on balance of power principles. Except for the 1854 Crimean War, Europe enjoyed broad peace for the first forty years after the Congress. Peace then endured for another sixty years without a general war until 1914.

After the huge bloodletting of the Napoleonic Wars, is was the manpower, economic, and general exhaustion that provided a few decades of peace.

A couple of generations to produce more bodies for their armies, and ... (NB: these numbers are just approximations from multiple sources)

- Russo-Turkish War, 1828-29: over 100,000 Russian, unknown Turkish casualties dead, wounded, captured, or missing

- First Schleswig War, 1848-51: 17,000 casualties 

- Second Schleswig War 1864: 17,000 casualties

- The Crimean War, 1853–56: 675,000 casualties

- The Franco-Austrian War, 1859: 38,000+ casualties

- Austro-Prussian War, 1866: 173,000 casualties

Franco-Prussian War, 1870–71: 1,150,000 casualties

Russo-Turkish War, 1877–78: 400,000 casualties

That doesn't even include the events of 1848. 

We are already seeing a whole raft of bad takes resulting from the still ongoing war in Ukraine. I've held off, but I couldn't help myself.

The only way you would have the conditions for a "Congress of Vienna" would be if NATO APCs were on every street corner in Moscow and the remains of the Russian government east of the Ural mountains.

That isn't going to happen. As such, if you desire a long peace in the east you will need to ensure that Ukraine defeats Russia and sends her forces home to deal with their politicians.

Give Russia land or create another frozen conflict and war will be back sooner.  

Either way, war will be back. It always is. Just pick your period of peace and your magnitude.

Lawdy, we need to pray for each other. The Smartest People in the Room™will test our patience. Do not let these people claim positions of authority they have not earned by performance. They will just create condition for thousands of others to die for their hubris and vanity -  again.

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