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President Putin and interviewer Tucker Carlson. Credit:

March 2, 2024 (EIRNS)—Twice in the course of February, Russian President Vladimir Putin directly addressed an urgent strategic question to the people of the United States and its leaders. First, in the course of his Feb. 6 interview with journalist Tucker Carlson, Putin remarked that the entire sanctions and war policy against Russia had backfired badly on the U.S.:

“Do you even realize what is going on or not? Does anyone in the United States realize this. What are you doing? You are cutting yourself off. All experts say this. Ask any intelligent and thinking person in the United States what the dollar means for the U.S. But you are killing it with your own hands…. The tools that the U.S. uses don’t work. Well, one has to think about what to do. If this realization comes to the ruling elites, then yes, then the first person of the state [the President—ed.] will act in anticipation of what the voters and the people who make decisions at various levels expect from this person. Then maybe something will change.” Asked about discussions between the U.S. and Russia, Putin responded: “Who’s there to talk to? I just don’t understand. We’re ready to talk. But with whom? Where are the guarantees? There are none.”

Then on Feb. 29, in his annual Address to Russia’s Federal Assembly, Putin warned of the consequences of the stated threat of sending NATO troops to beef up the dwindling Ukrainian forces on the ground in that country: “We remember the fate of those who once sent their contingents to the territory of our country. But now the consequences for possible interventionists will be much more tragic. They must ultimately understand that we also have weapons—yes, they know about this, I just said—that can hit targets on their territory. And they should understand that what they are doing now to scare the whole world, it risks a conflict with nuclear weapons which means the destruction of civilization. Do they understand this, or what?”

What has been the response of American and other Western Establishment elites to Putin’s insistent calls for dialogue to bring the planet back from the brink of a nuclear war? Nothing that even falls in the category of rational.

1. NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoana dismissed Putin’s warnings as a bluff. “We do not see any imminent threat of Russia using these weapons.” His comments were more “the logic of psychological intimidation rather than real intentions.” The New York Times concurred that “Mr. Putin has repeatedly made veiled nuclear threats against the West.”

2. French President Emmanuel Macron doubled down on his proposal to put troops on the ground in Ukraine, reiterating on Feb. 29 that his words to that effect at a Feb. 26 meeting of some 20 European leaders in Paris had been “weighed, thought-through and measured.” U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin likewise told the House Armed Services Committee on Feb. 28 that, “quite frankly, if Ukraine falls, I really believe that NATO will be in a fight with Russia.”

3. The shocking, leaked phone conversation among top German military leaders discussing the ways and means of carrying out an attack on the Kerch Bridge linking Crimea to the Russian mainland, was admitted to be “authentic” by the German Defense Ministry, according to reports in Spiegel and Welt. The Speaker of the Russian Duma Vyacheslav Volodin asked in a posting on his Telegram channel if German Chancellor Olaf Scholz realizes that “these actions will require Russia to carry out reciprocal strikes.”

It is hard to overstate the extreme danger posed by the collective insanity displayed by Western responses such as these to the red-hot strategic situation, and to President Putin’s repeated calls for a dialogue with sane forces in the West.

Contrast that with the manner in which key leaders of the Global South, such as South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa and Brazil’s Lula de Silva, have displayed morality and statesmanship in demanding the necessary policy changes—in Gaza, Ukraine, economics, and security matters.

The ball is now in the court of the United States and the nations of Europe. Broad, visible support for Lyndon LaRouche’s Oasis Plan for the Middle East is a good place to start. Brazilian President Lula gave voice on Feb. 18 to what the tens of millions of people taking to the streets in the West are thinking, whether they are protesting the genocide in Gaza, or the economic policies which are killing them, when he warned that “either political leaders change their behavior towards human beings, or human beings will end up changing the political class.”