Yet more war clouds (alleged), in this bold, brazen, best of all humanly possible worlds we've created.
As I recall, somebody once said that, had we Westerners been really serious about nuclear non-proliferation, we'd have done our best to preserve at least some key elements of the US-Soviet bipolarity. Meaning, if there had ever been anyone gravely serious about keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of partners, allies, clients, stooges, victims, etc (arguably more serious than we were, anyhow), it was the Soviets.
No doubt I'm misremembering the quote, in whole or part. Still, even now it does get me thinking . . .
I don't know how this is going to sit with anyone else, other than badly.
But I think even I, personally, could have come up with more than a few good, stabilizing uses - not for the Soviet Union as we knew it - but for an ongoing, duly de-Communized, detoxified Russian superpower/sphere of influence, say c. 1990. And perhaps still more uses for it in the ever more proliferant world of today. Assuming, of course, that global stability was in fact our real Western aim during the formative years (1992-1996?) of our present exciting era. For myself, looking back at what seem to be a number of crucial points on that timeline - e.g., the mounting, carte blanche arrogance and effrontery of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, mainland China, and not least, of an increasingly Berlin-centered unifying Europe - I'm finding less and less reason to think we in the West were pursuing anything but - I don't know, corporate-globalization-hastening instability?*
* Especially as I recall how eager we Yanks were to facilitate all the above.
As for my fantasy of a revived and cleansed Russia, I'm sure that most sound, expert opinion will tell me it was humanly impossible, as well as undesirable. Humanly, yes. But Divinely? . . .
Anyhow, maybe I'm only getting soft(er)-headed. Indeed there's a part of me that would like to be more of a hardheaded political realist. It's just that, again and again, I keep hearing some other part of me whispering: "If only we had prayed harder, when we had a crossroads opportunity, for the conversion of Russia." Instead of working and praying (I believe in more or less that order) for - let me see now - the prostration, corruption, confusion, destitution, demoralization, decomposition of Russia? Almost as if collapse was supposed to be the flip side of conversion. At least for any nation as deeply, if not irretrievably corrupt as those near-incorrigible Muscovites. (Thankfully the Saudi-Pakis had just the right scourge, if not cure.)
As it is, the dice have rolled, the slots have turned, and we now have, strictly speaking, neither collapse nor conversion. But suppose that, even now, God has put something other than lemons in the machine. Suppose it happens that enough of us, on all sides - Russians, Chinese, Americans - should somehow gain enough presence and peace of mind to actually see, and to summon, the residual good, the underlying, God-given humanity in both ourselves and each other. As opposed to what we usually call forth: the Man-given, demonically, stupidly advantage-seeking side of us, that's always pretending (until it's too late) it can somehow exploit and gamble with problems like Korea. If such an epiphany ever takes place, be sure to wake me. Assuming I'll be of any use, of course.
Maybe then enough of the three of us will be finally on the same page. Or at least enough for us all to be ready, and co-ordinated, if not for this near-conflagration, maybe for the next one? If not for Kim Jong-un, surely for the next sociopathic (state or non-state) actor?