The Atlantic Alliance offers guarantees to Finland and Sweden, also to strengthen the European Union

The question of Finland and Sweden joining the Atlantic Alliance continues to be a problem for Turkey’s aversion, which requires counterparts from Helsinki and Stockholm, which cannot be guaranteed by the leaders of the Alliance; despite this awareness, the Secretary General of the Atlantic Alliance, Stoltenberg, said he was optimistic and confident about the positive conclusion of the accession process. The declarations of optimism took place during the summit with the President of the Commission and the President of the Council of the European Union, in the context of the signing of the third declaration of aid in favor of military support for Ukraine; however, despite the confidence in the inclusion of Finland and Sweden in the Alliance, the stalemate has not been broken. The positive conclusion of the process of accession to the Atlantic Alliance is seen from a perspective of very significant historical and political importance, due to the tradition of neutrality of the two countries and their strategic position, within the opposition to the Russian ambitions against the ‘Europe: precisely because of these assessments, the ratification of membership was signed by 28 members and rejected only by Turkey and Hungary. The reasons of the two opposing states are different: Ankara does not like the refuge provided by the Nordic countries to Kurdish exponents, therefore going to question internal political reasons of the candidate states, while in Budapest the suspect is the favorable attitude towards the Russian president, manifested several times and the origin of profound disagreements also within the European Union. Sweden and Finland have tried to carry out acts that could satisfy Turkey: such as the limitation of the activities of the Kurds on their territories, Stockholm has also lifted the ban on the sale of weapons to Ankara and distanced itself from the Kurdish-Syrian militias, as requested by Turkey, despite the role recognized by Western countries in the fight against the Islamic State; however, these openings are not enough for President Erdogan, who probably cannot make unwelcome concessions to his electorate until after the elections next June. In any case, as reiterated by NATO leaders, the risk of a Russian military attack against Finland and Sweden is not considered possible precisely because of the guarantees provided as long as the two countries are not members of the Alliance; in fact, therefore, the two nations already enjoy the protection of the Atlantic Alliance in all respects as if they were part of it in a formal way and a possible military attack already implies an automatic response from NATO. The latest joint declaration between the European Union and the Atlantic Alliance reaffirms the intentions of those signed in 2016 and 2018, but takes place in the context of the war of aggression perpetrated by Russia and strengthens the position of Finland and Sweden in the Euro-Atlantic sector, bringing a substantial political novelty which, in the immediate term, has an anti-Russian function, but in the future promises to have further developments beyond the military ones. The declaration of 2023, therefore, confirms the strategic concept of the Atlantic Alliance, which defines the European Union as a unique and essential ally and, on this basis, requires its even more enhanced integration, above all within the framework of the common strategy of defense and of international security. Very important is the favorable judgment towards an autonomous development of the military defense structures of the European Union, albeit still within the Atlantic Alliance, an issue repeatedly questioned by the previous president of the United States, Trump. If these considerations have a functional nature more pertinent to the contingent situation, relating to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, judgments have also been expressed, especially by the president of the European Union Commission, Ursula Von der Leyen, relating to potential situations already present, but which, for the moment, are limited to conflicts of a commercial nature, such as relations with China. Beijing’s evident willingness to reshape the international order to its own advantage must alarm democratic countries, which could risk seeing their peculiarities in the way of governing altered. Only greater political integration and the creation of an autonomous military force in Europe can guarantee a deterrence capacity from armed threats or even from reversals of American politics, no longer as stable as it once was, which could cause a decrease in its own domestic of the Atlantic Alliance, due to isolationist tendencies already seen in the recent US past.

For Schengen only Croatia is admitted, excluding Romania and Bulgaria

The conclusion of the Schengen area accession process, which began in 2016, ends a process that was marked by crises caused by the crossing of the Balkan route by over a million migrants. The particularly violent behavior of the Croatians has provoked criticism from the European Commission, as well as from numerous human rights associations. Zagreb has to control the second largest land border of the Union with limited means, but this does not justify an approach based on repressive methods, which do not justify, according to eight very relevant non-governmental organizations, admission to the Schengen area, furthermore condemned the lack of sensitivity of Brussels for the protection and respect of civil rights. Admission to the Schengen area should bring substantial benefits in the field of tourism and transport to the Croatian country and it would be desirable for the European Commission to expressly request, in exchange for these facilitations, a greater commitment in the field of protection of migrants’ rights and also a greater willingness to welcome quotas of migrants, issues towards which Zagreb has not shown itself to be too sensitive up to now. If Croatia has obtained the longed-for admission to Schengen, Romania and Bulgaria are still blocked by vetoes determined by reasons functional to other states and which are influenced by exclusive partisan interests, masked by reasons of superior interests. The President of the European Parliament and the Commissioner for Internal Affairs expressed their disappointment regarding the exclusion of Bucharest from the Schengen area, which the Romanian country has been requesting for eleven years. The main culprits for the refusal are in Vienna and The Hague, even if Holland seemed more inclined to give a favorable opinion, then denied at the end. Romania seemed to meet the criteria for admission to Schengen, as it had actually been judged by the Commission and also by the members of the European Parliament. In reality, the real reasons for the Austrian refusal would be economic, the Vienna government has already denounced, in the past, pressures by the Romanian authorities on Austrian companies and also the question of the state oil company of Bucharest, which belongs to the Austrian company, is the cause of tension between the two countries. In reality, the reasons that were presented to justify the refusal by Vienna related to the 75,000 illegal migrants present in Austria, in a quantity declared unmanageable; however the migratory traffic towards the Austrian country comes mostly from Croatia and Hungary, but Romania and Bulgaria are blamed for internal political reasons, i.e. to satisfy the right-wing electorate and to point out to the Union that Austria has many more asylum claims than it can handle. Once again, therefore, Austria stands out for practicing a selfish policy, which risks compromising the already precarious balance of European cohesion, bending Community interests to its own individual advantage; thus also the veto against Bulgaria, still the responsibility of the Austrians and the Dutch, risks directing the Bulgarian country towards positions ever closer to Russia. The Netherlands motivates its no due to the lack of minimum conditions for the functioning of the rule of law, a defect repeatedly noted and reported by the Dutch, for which the opposition to Bulgaria’s entry into the Schengen area, by Amsterdam , it was an expected fact; almost unexpected, on the contrary, the veto from Austria, which associated the reasons relating to migration issues valid for Romania also to the Bulgarian nation. In response to this refusal, the government in Sofia has threatened retaliation against the two countries, highlighting, once again, how the unanimity mechanism is now not only obsolete but evidently harmful to EU policy. From a strategic point of view, the non-admission of Bulgaria to Schengen represents a gross error, because it takes place in a country deeply blocked by an institutional crisis, due to the lack of agreement for the formation of the government, since the electoral outcome of last October, by the pro-Western majority forces and this can only favor the forces against the European Union, who, at the same time, openly sympathize with Putin. Austria and Holland, therefore, with the refusal towards Bulgaria and Romania, assume responsibility for the risk of decreasing European sympathies in territories contiguous to the conflict: a consequence not carefully evaluated or only overcome by trivial partisan interests.

The difficult process of admission of the Balkan countries to the European Union

The strategy of the European Union is progressing slowly and with several doubts about the admission of the Balkan countries within its organization. The main intention is to remove the Balkan nations from the potential Russian influence, which would force Europe to have a further presence of Moscow on its borders; on the other hand, however, doubts continue about the existence of the conditions required by Brussels and also about the real opportunity to expand the members of the union to countries not too convinced of European principles and mainly ambitious to enter the richest market in the world and to take advantage of the rich subsidies of the European Union. The cost-benefit ratio of the admission of Bosnia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia focuses precisely on the dilemma between the need to remove from Russian influence countries where sympathy for Moscow is in any case present and high and the management of countries which might resemble the relationship with those of the Visegrad pact. With the current European rules based on unanimity of decisions, allowing the entry of new members, for whom we do not have the most complete guarantees, appears to be such a risk capable of further weakening the precarious balances that govern the Union; the case would be different where the criterion of unanimity was superseded by that of the majority, capable of making it impossible to block decisions and allow for faster governance of the supranational body and not blocked by contingent needs, also and above all political, of the individuals state subjects. For the moment, therefore, we are proceeding slowly, with aid to combat the energy crisis and other practical concessions, but of minor importance, such as the extension of telephone roaming; as well as a formal declaration in which the EU reaffirmed “its total and unequivocal commitment to the European perspective of all the countries of the Western Balkans”. However, these small progresses must be viewed with a positive outlook, because the summit candidate countries and the President of the Commission has produced an intention to face together the difficulties caused by the war in Ukraine and good prospects, albeit in the medium term, on the future of relations between the parties. The President of the European Council also used words of optimism for the entry into Europe of the Baltic countries, but with a non-immediate timing, again confirming the hypothesis of a process that is certainly not short, but, apparently, inevitable. For some countries, integration could be closer and, indeed, for Albania, Montenegro and North Macedonia, the fact of being already members of the Atlantic Alliance is a preferential factor for admission to Brussels, even if I know There are still no obstacles regarding the requirements requested by the Union and on which these nations have undertaken to work to achieve the required standards. Bosnia’s path appears longer due to its constitutional instability, which has taken on a chronic nature, which constitutes a decisive reason for slowing down the admission process. The issue of Kosovo is even more complicated, because the Balkan country is currently aware that it cannot even start an admission process because it has to solve the problems of international recognition for its unilateral declaration of independence and the non-recognition of Serbia, the Federation Russia and, above all, 5 EU members (Spain, Cyprus, Greece, Slovakia and Romania), and the People’s Republic of China; in Europe the greatest obstacle is represented by Madrid, which refuses recognition by comparing the secession of Kosovo to that attempted by Catalonia. However, the most complex case is represented by Serbia, which claims to want to proceed towards admission to the Union, but, at the same time, maintain its ties with Russia, which are not only political, but also cultural and religious. With the turning point of the Ukrainian war and the attitude already maintained for a long time by Putin, of profound opposition to respect for civil and political rights and the profound contrast to dissent, Belgrade’s conduct is not acceptable for Brussels and the profound distance that has created between the Union, deeply pro-Atlantic, and Russia, currently appears as an insurmountable obstacle. Without an alignment with European foreign policy, Serbia has no chance of joining Europe, but this result would be highly unfavorable for the Union, which could even see a base for the Russian fleet rise in the center of the Adriatic Sea: something that must not absolutely happen.

The difficult dialogue between Russia and Ukraine

According to reports from the US newspaper “Washington Post”, the administration of the White House informally urged the Kiev executive to show itself available so that Ukraine can start a path that could lead to talks with the Russian government. According to the American executive, there is a real danger for the Ukrainian country of losing the support and aid of other nations; according to some analysts, the US solicitation is only preparatory to a possible decrease in the volume of aid, especially military, in anticipation of possible changes in the political structures and direction of some countries and also of the United States itself, which with the next mid-term elections , could change the composition of the legislative power. Along with political concerns, there are also those of an economic nature, due to the costs induced by the war and its prolongation, especially in the energy sector, but not only: in fact, if the higher production costs affect the growth trend of countries rich, in poor countries the concern is related to the lack of food, caused by the blocking of exports of Ukrainian wheat. For now these trends, although emerging, remain minority, but the economic difficulties, combined with the change in the trend of some governments, despite the denials, could favor a decrease in aid in arms, also in the name of a distorted pacifist idea, because indirectly clearly favorable to Moscow. Until now, however, the Ukrainian president has not shown himself willing to change his attitude of total closure unless he has to deal with a new Russian government, installed after Putin’s overthrow; this eventuality appears very remote, if not completely unattainable, due to the iron control that the Russian president maintains over the bureaucratic and government apparatus of Russia. The Ukrainian position, however, is understandable: the country has been invaded and bombed and dragged into a conflict that has produced death and destruction within its territory, of which it has lost substantial portions; the conditions in Kiev do not only concern the refusal to negotiate with the tenant of the Kremlin, but also include the withdrawal and return of the occupied territories with adequate compensation for the damage suffered by Russian military actions. Putin himself, who had shown good intentions, in words, on the possibility of a negotiation, maintains an attitude completely opposite to that of Kiev and claims, as a starting point, to keep the territories conquered and annexed with the false referendums and leaving the current boundaries unaltered. The situation appears to have no way out, the positions are too conflicting and, however, the mere fact that we start talking about dialogue, even if impossible for now, can mean a little hope. If Ukraine needs all the support it can get, it has nevertheless shown that it has greater determination than the Russian armed forces and has forced Moscow to practically exhaust its arsenal, which needs to be reconstituted; the internal situation of the Russian country is not the best: the economic crisis and discontent, while not leading to major protests, do not allow the creation of a fighting force with a conviction equal to that of Ukraine, this war is not felt as its own by the Russian people , who shuns it or accepts it with resignation. These elements, combined with the fact that the Kremlin is starting to come under pressure from China, opposed to the continuation of a conflict that is compressing global economic growth and therefore also Chinese exports, indicate that the path of dialogue may be more likely than it is. current conditions allow for a positive development. Stopping the weapons will have to be the first necessary step, but this will not be enough if a world network is not created capable of making the two sides withdraw from their respective positions, always, however, keeping in mind the reasons of Ukraine which is the country it is. been attacked. Russia needs to realize that it is an increasingly isolated state and in this the action of Beijing will be fundamental, which has so far supported Moscow politically: if this happens, Putin will have to accept its downsizing on the international level, which can only be recovered by yielding to the front. to the demands of Kiev. The path is not easy and not even short, but, at the moment, it seems the only way to go.

Iran could attack foreign countries to divert attention from its internal problems

The state of global alert could soon see alongside the war scenario of the Ukrainian front, even a potential conflict involving Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and the United States. Tehran, struggling with one of the most serious inmates in the history of the Islamic republic, due to the death of one of its citizens, of Kurdistan origin, following the arrest by the religious police, for wearing the veil incorrectly, he would have identified in a military action the method to be able to distract the internal public opinion from the protests in progress. It is clear that if this were true, the theocratic regime would reveal all its weakness in a gamble whose result, in addition to not being at all obvious, could even be the cause of the increase in the manifestations of dissent. The Iranian government has more strongly accused Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the European states, Israel and, of course, the United States, of fomenting protests, which are increasing more and more against the rules imposed by the Shiite clergy. In the Iranian Kurdistan region more than half of the inhabitants follow the rules of Sunni Islam, while in Iraqi Kurdistan the Sunnis are almost all: in fact, therefore, they are enemies of the Shiites, of which Iran considers itself the main representative. Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, is the seat of US troops still present in Iraq, and has already been the subject, in the past, of Iranian drone and missile attacks, in one case thwarted by the Americans themselves. As for Saudi Arabia, relations between the two states have always been compromised due to religious reasons, as Riyadh is the highest representative of the Sunnis and Tehran of the Shiites and both claim religious supremacy in the Islamic creed. . Although Riyadh and Washington have recently had disagreements over the Saudi desire to reduce crude oil production, a decision undoubtedly favorable to Moscow, this threat is bringing the two countries closer, after a phase in which President Biden had expressly stated that he wanted to carry out a review of bilateral relations. The danger of an Iranian attack does not allow the US to abandon its strategic interests in the region, centered on the defense of the anti-terrorism policy and the desire to integrate Israel more and more with the countries from the Gulf. Washington has already publicly specified, in the event of an Iranian attack it will not hesitate to respond directly in the first person. The stance with the Iranian threats marks a further development in the alliance between Tehran and Moscow, where Iran is increasingly committed to supplying the Russian country with weapons; tactically, the drones of Tehran were fundamental against the Ukrainian defenses and now the possible supply of missiles with a range capable of covering 300 and 700 kilometers, could bring an indisputable advantage for Moscow, which, by now, has too old, imprecise and ineffective. This factor is likely to be decisive for increasing the global divide and further US aversion to the Iranian country. In this scenario where the world appears increasingly divided into blocs, it will be interesting to see how China will want to position itself: if, on the one hand, the strategic alliance with Russia has a purely anti-American function, an expansion of armed conflicts means a decrease. the ability to create wealth worldwide: an issue to which Beijing is very sensitive, in order to maintain its growth levels such as to ensure the advancement of the country as a whole. A conflict that may involve countries that are included among the major oil producers, means a practically safe stop for the world economy and with a significant contraction in the spending power of the richest countries. Beijing, presumably, will have to abandon its aversion to the US and engage itself in negotiations, towards which it has so far maintained an attitude too shy not to show any signs of weakness towards Washington. However, the possibility remains that the Iranian threat is only verbal and that Tehran does not intend to put into practice a use of weapons from which it would have everything to lose: in fact, even this solution does not seem to be able to distract a public opinion that has never been so determined, and indeed, a conflict could only worsen the perception that Iranian citizens have of their own government; rather, the Iranian government seems to want to divert international observers more from internal ones, but in doing so it favors the coalition of executives who did not go through mutual positive moments, obtaining ever greater isolation.

The nuclear danger and the evolution of the conflict

The mere threat of a solution, which could include the use of nuclear weapons, opens up completely new scenarios for the Ukrainian war, with phases that could move the conflict away from traditional fighting. The Atlantic Alliance believes a direct response with the use of atomic weapons is remote, in response to a possible tactical nuclear bomb, that is, with a range of about one and a half kilometers, even if it promises very serious consequences for Moscow; on the other hand, the Kremlin has specified several times that the use of atomic devices is foreseen only in the event of invasion of Russian soil, even if the farce referendums have expanded it, incorporating the disputed territory with Kiev. The current phase of the conflict sees, on the one hand, the terrestrial advance of the Ukrainian troops, which proceed in a systematic way in the reconquest of what was conquered by the Russians and on the part of Moscow the massive use of long-range missiles, which are directed to mostly against civil infrastructures, with the clear aim of further exhaustion the population. From an examination of the rockets that hit Ukraine, however, it seems that Moscow is running out of its arsenal of these armaments and this, if on the one hand it can be interpreted as positive news, on the other hand it opens up to the possibility that Russia can use other types of armaments; for now, together with long-range rockets, Iranian-made kamikaze drones are used, which allow great results to be obtained, which thanks to their low cost, allow a great use with an almost safe achievement of objectives. For now, Ukraine has been able to little against these two weapons used together, but the supplies of anti-missile batteries by some European countries and devices capable of altering the operating frequencies of drones, have concrete possibilities to reduce the offensive potential of Moscow on the ground of Kiev. On the ground for now, Russia has only fielded conscripts, subject to forced enlistment, with very little training and no combat experience, whose sacrifice has the sole purpose of preserving the most trained troops. This aspect creates deep discontent in Russia and cases of insubordination multiply in the barracks, which risk compromising central power. This factor, combined with the negative development of the conflict and also the difficulties due to sanctions, could lead to the use of nuclear weapons, however this decision, in addition to military implications, would have even more political consequences of an internal and external nature. The announced end of forced recruitment can be seen in this context, once the figure of 300,000 men has been reached and what seemed to be the intention to give a sort of stop to the conflict, with the aim of maintaining current positions, all done ‘anything but taken for granted. The current Russian objective seems to be to buy time and maintain positions pending a necessary reorganization of the armed forces and their arsenal, the introduction of martial law in the annexed territories, must be read in this sense: to create the conditions for to retreat as little as possible, even in the hope of the arrival of the harsh climate, which would not favor the Ukrainian advance. The impossibility of negotiations for the closure of both sides must not discourage diplomatic action, however difficult, which must proceed for small objectives, such as the exchange of prisoners and the search for phases of truce in the conflict: it is a basic starting point necessary to allow an indirect conversation between the parties, which, in this phase, can only be covered by international organizations or by neutral countries and institutions capable of favoring any relationship between the belligerent countries. The nuclear risk remains the greatest danger, but defusing the claims of countries that are in open violation of international law appears to be an equally fundamental requirement for pursuing world peace, which must be the main objective. The solution of the Ukrainian crisis seems increasingly distant, also because the use of weapons and their supply is an indispensable requirement both for Kiev and for the whole West, which with a defeat of the Ukrainian country would see dangerously close to its borders. the danger of Putin’s Russia. A situation capable of spreading a disastrous conflict to the whole of Europe.

The US and the West will increase military aid to Kiev to help regain the lost territories

Despite the potential Russian supremacy, the scenario of the Ukrainian conflict appears to be in constant evolution, which is becoming less positive for Moscow. According to Washington, the Kiev offensive is constant and planned, thanks to the progress made by the Ukrainian military in the actions carried out in the south of the country against Russian troops. Parallel to these successes for Kiev, the good news is the renewed military aid, not only from the US, but also from those countries that fear the Russian invasion. After the start of hostilities, dating back to six months earlier, the West sees positive signs on the ground, thanks to the reconquest of some Ukrainian cities that had been stolen from the occupation of Moscow; this allows us to glimpse a scenario different from the one so far present, where Kiev had limited itself to resisting the Russian invasion, but with an evolution towards a possible reconquest of the lost ground. This perspective has been certified by the US Secretary of Defense in front of the defense ministers of the countries belonging to the Atlantic Alliance and the representatives of fifty nations who support Ukrainian efforts. The scene of the meeting was the military base of Ramstein, where aid for 675 million dollars relating to special weapons, armored vehicles and light weapons was formalized; in particular the rockets, howitzers and anti-tank systems, which are proving to be fundamental for the recovery of Kiev. These supplies are needed to supply Ukrainian armories after Soviet and Russian production arsenals are running out. The US also advocated the need for greater participation in aid for Ukraine to achieve the goal of defeating Putin. From the point of view of the duration of the conflict, analysts hypothesize a scenario that can contemplate a duration of several years, far from the predictions of a rapid conclusion, for this reason it is necessary to implement and modernize the weapons equipment for Ukraine and train large light and heavy ammunition reserves. This factor is considered strategic, not only for the containment of Russia, but also to continue the process of regaining the Ukrainian territories stolen from Moscow and to arrive at favorable conditions to end the conflict. The United States is confirmed as the country most committed to the financial effort to support Kiev, the current administration of the White House has signed a commitment for the supply of approximately 13.5 billion dollars of armaments compatible with the artillery systems of the Atlantic Alliance, weapons considered more modern than those used by the Russians and which are providing the desired results against Moscow. Certainly the supply of armaments alone is not enough, equipment is also needed against the harsh climate, which the fighters will have to face next winter and the increasingly intense training of the Ukrainian military in the use of new weapons systems, so different from the setting up of Soviet and Russian armaments. This new turn of the conflict, which highlights the concrete possibility of overturning a prediction that was all in favor of Russia, invests a whole series of reflections on a military and geopolitical level, on the possible behaviors of Moscow, which must be taken into great consideration, both by Ukrainian and Western strategists. Putin can no longer go back: his prestige and that of his circle of government would be greatly compromised: a defeat in Ukraine was not even foreseen and not having solved the special military operation in his favor in a short time appears as a half failure. Moscow always has the nuclear option, the consequences of which are not foreseeable, except in an all-out war, in which the Chinese would hardly give their support. The American arms supplies are far qualitatively higher and the determination of the Russian soldiers is not comparable to that of the Ukrainians; the sanctions put a strain on the West, which, however, from an energy point of view, albeit slowly, are reorganizing their supply systems, while Moscow, already in default, will soon prove the shortage of Western products, it will hardly be replaceable with similar products from other areas of the world: these are not luxury goods, but products without which companies will not be able to function, furthermore the financial blocks and the sale of energy materials at discounted prices will reduce the availability of maneuvers of a economy already in trouble before the war, like the Russian one. These perspectives risk inducing Putin to extreme gestures capable of bringing the world back many years, to avoid this it is necessary to combine the current measures with a diplomatic strategy that can be a shortcut to allow the conflict to end.

China and Russia will use yuan and ruble for their energy commodity transactions

The Chinese attitude towards Russia, regarding the invasion of the Ukrainian country, has so far been ambiguous from a political point of view, but clearer from an economic point of view. This reflection, in fact, explains the behavior adopted by Beijing since the beginning of the hostilities against Kiev, regarding the rejection of the sanctions against Moscow, intended as an unexpected opportunity for economic benefits for China. Of course, political closeness with Russia exists anyway, but it is to be framed more in an anti-American function, rather than with genuinely shared motivations, if not as a fact that has created a sort of precedent for an eventual invasion of Taiwan. This possibility, albeit concrete, is nevertheless still considered distant by most analysts. It all starts with Moscow’s need to find other markets for raw materials, after the fact that it lost the European one in retaliation. China has always been looking for energy supplies to support the growth necessary to raise the country to the level of a great power and to create the internal wealth necessary to avoid too many challenges to its system of government. The Chinese country is thus the market that Moscow needs to sell its raw materials, even if heavily discounted, due to the lack of demand. The two countries have reached an agreement on exchange currencies that excludes both the euro and the dollar, in favor of the yuan and the ruble: with a payment system that provides for the use of half of the two currencies for each transaction. If for Russia the intent is to give a political signal to the West, avoiding the use of the currencies of hostile countries, which have frozen Moscow’s reserves abroad, for China the increase in the use of the yuan on the international level it has a very significant economic significance, because it allows its currency to reach fifth place after the dollar, euro, British pound and Japanese yen, in the ranking of the most used currencies. The ambition is to overcome the Japanese currency and get closer to the podium, as a functional tool for its foreign policy, with a view to favoring its expansion in the emerging markets of Asia and Africa and therefore exercising an even greater share of soft power in these regions. The ruble, on the other hand, has even dropped out of the twenty most used currencies and, with this agreement, it could try to move up the rankings, even if at the moment, with the country subjected to sanctions, this more than remote possibility seems unattainable, even if Moscow’s intention is to enter into a similar agreement with Turkey, which, despite being a member of the Atlantic Alliance, has not joined the sanctions. Ankara has practical reasons to take advantage of the Russian gas sale because its economy is in great difficulty and having favorable access to energy raw materials could favor a development of its production system. Currently, Russia’s position vis-à-vis China on supplies of energy materials ranks as the top supplier, having overtaken even Saudi Arabia on supplies to the oil sector. The trade balance between the two states is clearly in favor of Moscow, which exports goods for 10,000 million euros to Beijing, of which eighty percent relates to the energy sector, while China exports only goods to Russia for 4,000 million euros. EUR. Beijing does not seem to suffer from this imbalance because it allows access to Russian energy resources at favorable conditions and, at the same time, does not consider the export of its products to the former Soviet country potentially convenient. Facilitated access to Russian resources, on the other hand, favors greater productivity of Chinese companies, which could favor competition from Western, US and European companies, generating an indirect consequence of the very dangerous sanctions. On the other hand, interrupting the policy of sanctions and aid, including military aid, for Ukraine is certainly impossible, despite some right-wing politicians in the West who have expressed this intention. The unity and compactness of the West is also a protection against Chinese expansionism, which fears more than anything else the blockade of its goods to the richest markets, which continue to be those of the West lined up against Russia.

The United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights denounces pressure from the Chinese side not to publish a report on Uyghurs

Practically on the eve of the end of her mandate as Commissioner for Human Rights, which expires on August 31, Michelle Bachelet, former president of Chile, revealed that she was pressured not to publish a ready-made report, which would denounce Beijing’s abuses against the Muslim Uyghur minority, which has a population of about twelve million people present in the northern region of Xinjiang. China has reportedly sent a letter, also signed by forty other countries whose names have not been revealed, in which the intent was to dissuade the Commissioner for Human Rights from not publishing the report. The drafting of the report in question has been underway for three years, but also includes the results of the Commissioner’s visit last May, which provoked heavy criticism from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and also from the US State Department. for the attitude considered too accommodating on the part of the UN envoy towards the Chinese authorities, which have been criticized with tones considered too moderate. Despite the rather long processing period for the preparation of the report, publication has been postponed several times for unknown official reasons, although it is assumed that Beijing and its allies have materially operated in this sense. A justification provided by the Commissioner herself is that the delay is due to the need to integrate the results of the disputed May visit into the report, in any case the objective of publication would be by the end of the Commissioner’s mandate, i.e. by the end of the month of August, even if there is no official confirmation to this effect. Many Western countries have specifically requested the publication of the report but the Chinese government has expressed requests to examine the research results more closely; to complicate the situation, a search by fourteen international newspapers intervened, which managed to examine official Chinese documents that would have confirmed the persecution of Uyghurs, through continuous and systematic violations of human rights suffered by at least more than two million people with the practice of internment, also suffered by minors, in re-education centers, where in addition to the administration of physical and psychological violence, the Uighurs are used as a workforce without pay, in a condition comparable to slavery. Beijing denies these allegations by defining the detention centers as vocational training institutes. The accusation against Bachelet by the US Secretary of State is that he did not ask China for news of missing Uyghurs and those deported to other Chinese regions, uprooted from their places of origin, even some human rights organizations have defined the management of the Commissioner as too compliant towards China and asking for her to be replaced by more determined people. The willingness to step down from her role as Commissioner for Human Rights would materialize right after her return from the mission in China and would be justified on personal grounds. The coincidence appears at least suspicious, it could have been the case of too strong Chinese pressure to determine the real reason for the resignation and the awareness of not knowing how to face such a test, that is, not being able to face the consequences of a too little severe relationship on the part of Western countries or the opposite on the part of the Chinese. In any case, an inglorious end to his mandate as Commissioner of Human Rights, which in one way or another will mark the political figure of Bachelet.

Doubts about the Moscow attack

Concerning the attack that killed the daughter of the main ideologue of Russian supremacy over Eurasia, there can be no doubt about its instrumentality in supporting the revitalization of the consensus for the war against Ukraine. The almost immediate resolution of the case by the Russian secret services, which took place with a rapidity, which could be used to prevent the incident in a preventive manner, also contributes to reinforcing these doubts. The most extremist area that supports President Putin is affected, the one that responds to the victim’s father who refers to the theory, developed with the collapse of the Tsarist empire and set aside in the communist period, of a Russia buttress of the liberal west. Although the father of the victim, to whom the attack could have been directed, has been indicated by many as Putin’s ideologue, there is no concrete evidence of this link, nevertheless the active presence of this extremist part of the Kremlin his supporters is directly functional to what has always been his electoral program, based on restoring Russia to what is believed to be its role as a great power and, currently, the military and geopolitical program of reconquering the Ukrainian country and bringing it back directly under its influence, to put into practice to re-establish the zone of influence that already belonged to the Soviet Union. The war against Kiev, which was supposed to go the other way, is also a war against the West, but for importance Putin considers it the primary objective as more functional to become an example for all peoples and nations than what is considered from Moscow its own zone of exclusive influence: submitting Ukraine is a warning to all those countries that have ambitions to break away from Russian domination and, perhaps, go to the West. Of course, the objective is also to stop the expansion and the Western presence on the Russian border, but the objectives, of course, go hand in hand. The general consensus of the Russians towards the special military operation appears less and less convinced, despite the ban on public protest, there are signs of malaise for the sanctions, which have caused a lowering of the quality of life of the population, and, above all, the difficulty to find the necessary fighters to carry on the conflict in Ukraine. The obligation to address the poorest populations who supply unprepared soldiers from the eastern part of the country is an eloquent signal of the refusal to enlist and, therefore, to share Putin’s war, on the part of the wealthiest and most educated Russian populations; furthermore, the hostility of the relatives of the fallen and of the soldiers taken prisoner of the Ukrainians is growing, who increasingly resort to every means to get news of their relatives. Putin finds himself in a situation with no way out: a possible withdrawal would be equivalent to a defeat and a defeat could bring down the entire power plant of Russia, this assessment leads to two considerations on the attack: despite Moscow immediately accused Ukraine, it seems unlikely that Kiev have completed such a difficult operation, without even claiming it. There is also the possibility that the bomb may have been placed by Russian terrorists opposed to the Putin regime, but this possibility appears even more difficult in a regime where the control of the security apparatus is very stringent and uses high-level technological tools, such as facial recognition. If these hypotheses are excluded, therefore, one cannot but assume an attack provoked by the Russian apparatus itself to solicit greater resentment towards the Ukrainian country, after all, the threatening statements of the sovereign and nationalists present at the funeral were particularly violent towards Kiev. If this were to be true, however, it would mean that Putin is also feeling the collapse of even the most nationalist and war-friendly side of his supporters: a very worrying fact because it denounces the distance from the Russian president from his followers who are more convinced of the rightness of the military operation. , so much so that they need a provocative act to arouse the outrage necessary to support the conflict. The other hypothesis is that with the attack, the hope of securing greater support in the most war-reluctant sections of the population, but still sensitive to Russian nationalism, is given concrete form. In any case, a desperate gesture by the Kremlin regime that signals a growing difficulty on the battlefield and on that of approval at home, which could represent the beginning of the end for the head of the Kremlin and his gang.