Friday, November 8, 2013

Eso’s Chronicles 230/ 1
New Kursk 01
© Eso A.B.
The following link by “Battlefields” on the battle of Kursk  in 1943 is lengthy and leaves something to be desired, nevertheless, it shows how the battle took a long time being prepared by both Germany and Russia. The preparations and their length by both sides are most impressive, not least, because they show that both sides had their apprehensions about coming out on the winners’ side. In this writer’s opinion, another such battle (not necessarily of tanks, which may have become an outmoded weapon) is being prepared for in the Middle East and in the Baltic; in other words, a battle across a very wide front indeed.
While I cannot give any actual outlines of the battle to come, I will present its rough outlines and raisons d'être in the next few blogs.
Just yesterday there was a news item in the Reuters News Service, that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has warned Israel  that if it does not join the American-brokered peace negotiations in the Middle East, it was likely to be soon facing a Third Palestinian Intifada and other geopolitical problems in the not too distant future.
The Secretary of State’s warning comes in the context of a reassessment of recent American and NATO strategies, which likely caused all the Great Powers who form on what was once Pangaea , the original land mass of our planet, to tickle their nuclear buttons. In other words, Europe, Asia and all the abutting lands, have for approximately a thousand years been facing a concerted Western strategy to occupy the land whence they themselves originally came from. Wishing to shed the spiritual discipline of their forebears, the Westerners decided that they would create a history of their own, albeit a history of fiction, which would allow them to attack the descendants of the powers that remained in charge of their own ancient homelands.
In the thousand years or so since the Carolingian kings the divisions and regroupings occurred among the various powers in the Western lands have been many. The original attacks by the West on the East can be identified with the early Crusades, starting about the 11th and 12th centuries of the 2nd millennium. In these attacks only the peripheral borderlands of the East were chiseled from it, and some beachheads captured, notably at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea and northeastern Europe.
My own country, Latvia, is part of the chiseled part of the East. Originally, the Germans, part of the great migration of the Goths (first as Vikings to the Black Sea region, then as various tribes of Goths backing away toward the northeast of Europe (the so-called Benelux countries), under the pressure of the advancing Turkic tribes or, as some prefer to call them—Huns. In the Benelux area, the Goths split up in three four main branches: the Germans, French, English, and Scandinavians. Latvia, then part of a geographical area known as Livonia, has its origins in the German desire to be independent of French Rule and the burden of French Paris as their capital city. Thus, early German warriors, known as Teutonic Knights, ventured into the relatively sparsely settled wooded lands of the European northeast, and established a city we now know as Riga. Originally, Riga was slated to become the future capital of Germany.
Riga was founded in 1201 by cannon Albert of Bremen, who was elevated to the rank of bishop by his uncle Hartwig archbishop of Bremen and Hamburg. Bishop Albert also founded the Teutonic Knights with whom he subjugated most of the Baltic tribes native to the area.
Though seldom mentioned and for political reasons never pressed, one of the reasons for the founding of Riga was to found a future capital city for the Germanic people.  One of the subtitles that Bishop Albert gave to Riga was Jerusalem, which indicates, at the very least, that in his mind’s eye Riga in the future was ‘up there’ with Constantinople and other major cities of the West and East. Again for political reasons, this high status for Riga remains unrealized and is reason why the subject is deliberately muted. Nevertheless, those powers, which have an eye on the future, of Europe as a federated state, retain an interest in Riga as a city founded by Germans. Not least among these are Latvians come under the Anglo-Saxon influence and are linking their future with NATO, which in one way or another is replacing the Teutonic Brotherhood.
Russia, too, has a no less greater interest in Riga than the West. To understand this better, we have to remember the trading history of Russia, which begins above the polar circle in Murmansk, moved south to Novgorod the Great, and later--with the building of St. Petersburg—moved even further south. By the beginning of the 20th century, Riga, then still part of tsarist Russia, had become the third largest city in Russia. While today Riga has lost its glory, the recent military maneuvers by Russia and NATO  suggest that its geopolitical importance is not being overlooked in the centers of power and is the cause of considerable hubris in government circles of Latvia itself.

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