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Mobilization in Russia. Thus began the First World War

The world’s leading leaders did not rise to the occasion – the generation of leaders who knew that even the worst peace is better than the best war is gone

Do you know exactly how the great carnage known as the First World War began? The assassination of the Austro-Hungarian Crown Prince Franz Ferdinand by Serbian nationalists is the well-known occasion,

but the great bloody clash begins for quite another reason

The chronology is more than instructive. After Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia on July 28, 1914, Russia issued an ultimatum to stop the attack, and on July 29, note, a partial mobilization of its border military districts, and on July 31, a general mobilization.

Germany quickly issued an ultimatum for the demobilization of the huge Russian reserve (then at first “only” 5 million and 338 thousand soldiers were summoned under the flags), but did not receive an answer, as a result of which she herself declared war on Russia on August 1. Thus, in just three days, a local conflict ignited into a battle that would take 10 million lives, including 100 thousand Bulgarians.

I bring this up because, if we imagine a great war as an ordinary rifle,

mobilization is its trigger And it has already been pulled.

Once this mechanism is triggered, going back is very difficult. At least that’s what history teaches us, and may it be wrong. Partial, general, whatever, mobilization has always been a prelude to larger-scale conflicts. And this is because every action begets a counteraction. How will Ukraine respond? Most likely by mobilizing even more people. How will the Western world respond? Most likely with even more weapons and support for Kyiv. And won’t Poland also announce some mobilization measures?

We move in a spiral,

which takes us back to times that until recently seemed to us like faded shadows of the dark past.

In fact, Putin’s statement of September 21, viewed purely historically, is far more disturbing for world peace than even the announcement of the so-called infamous special military operation of February 24. It is hardly a coincidence that all this happened after another summit between Russia and China during the meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. You don’t have to be infinitely astute to predict that, as before the start of the Ukrainian war

China has been informed

about the upcoming referendums and about the mobilization in question.

Caught up in our increasingly difficult daily lives and fixated on insane election battles and rising prices, we miss the fact that an escalation of the conflict to a whole new scale is just around the corner. Russian strikes on power plants and hydroelectric dams are the beginning of hostilities of another type. If five minutes out of a total of 15 minutes someone with a nuclear briefcase tells you that they can use everything they have and just in case repeat that it’s not a bluff, the least a reasonable person can do is at least thought about it.

Of course, common sense says that this is absurd because it means the end of everything, but in history, common sense has often been the loser. The big question, of course, is how the Russian society itself will react to the partial mobilization, because it is one thing to support military actions while watching TV and leading a normal life, it is another thing to receive a call-up.

The very referendums on the accession to the Russian Federation of the so-called DPR and LPR, Kherson and Zaporozhye regions will give Moscow a new legal discourse and opportunity

to brandish the nuclear club at all times

or other heavy armaments, because it will claim that it is already defending its own territory, that no one can violate its territorial integrity, and that it has 6,000 nuclear warheads on hand just in case.

It is clear that these referendums will be conducted in a very strange way. It is also clear that no one from the EU, NATO and the entire Western world will recognize them. But it is also clear that in the other camp no one seems to care anymore who admits what. The leading world leaders have not been up to the complexity of the situation in recent years.

In power all over the world are people who do not remember the horrors of war.

That leadership generation is gone

from the 60s and 70s, who knew from personal experience that even the worst peace is better than the best war.

General de Gaulle and Konrad Adenauer, Willy Brandt and Helmut Kohl, Olof Palme and Urho Kekonen are gone. The same Finnish president Kekonen, who managed to get terrible ideological enemies from NATO and the Warsaw Pact to sit down at one table and sign the Helsinki Accords, which promised eternal peace at least in Europe, and that was back in 1975. Even the decrepit Leonid Brezhnev (by the way , born in Dneprodzerzhinsk or present-day Kamianske in Ukraine, right where the shells are falling today), who said one short sentence in ten minutes, seemed more concerned with peace than today’s Russian chieftains, perhaps because he simply rotted in the trenches of the Kerch Peninsula and has seen what the blast does to the human body.

In fact, the last head of state to remember what it was like to live during a major war was the late Queen Elizabeth II. Just two days after her funeral, we stepped with a brisk step even more confidently into the trenches of a new Second World War, which the Queen had lived through.

Some will call it an irony of fate, others a sign of fate. Unfortunately, the story did not end as Fukuyama claimed. On the contrary, it returns in full force, and in its darkest manifestations. In fashion again

it is not the power of right, but the right of the strong

After years of being under the illusion that bomb tonnage and division numbers would not matter, the classic geopolitics of power is back with a bang. And maybe she never left, and we just lived in a world of chimeras and dreams. Winter is coming. And just like in “Game of Thrones” it will not last only one year.

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