The Lessons of Sovereign Jurisdictional Alliances

By Marc Nuttle

On June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife were assassinated by a Serbian terrorist. The powers to be at the time were Great Britain, France, Russia, Germany, and the Austrian-Hungarian and Ottoman Empires. The world geopolitically at the time was represented by a series of alliances whose members’ realms were weakening in military and economic strength. Their empires were overstretched governmentally. Their ability to control colonial infrastructure was challenged. Much like the Roman Empire in 400 AD, outer republics were resisting servitude to the crowns of central authority.
 
The leaders of these sovereign nations led by kings, emperors, sultans, and czars were aware of the fragility of their empires and kingdoms. They were suspicious of secret cabals. They were unassured of their national global authority. They were timorous in their own vision. The assassination of the Archduke did not have to inevitably result in World War I. The personal decisions of the leaders positioned at the axis of strategic choices escalated the incident unnecessarily out of nefarious personal anxiety.
 
And so it is with the leaders today in reference to military escalation resulting from the crisis initiated by Russia in Ukraine.
 
As in 1914, China and Russia know that their economic position in the world is weakening. The structure of government imposed upon their people is unsustainable. Their ability to control their spheres of influence are challenged. President Xi of China and President Putin of Russia have attempted for five years to establish a market for oil denominated in a petrocurrency backed by yuans and rubles. It hasn’t worked. No one else in the world wants or trusts their currencies.
 
Prior to the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the two powers appeared to enter into an economic alliance wherein China would provide manufactured goods to Russia in exchange for oil denominated in yuans. China would most likely guarantee the price of manufactured goods to be constant for five years. A key component of a communist economic system is to exploit price controls. In a sense, they were pursuing one gigantic barter system of oil for goods. Both countries would still have designed flexibility to conduct business in dollars encompassing other strategic needs.
 
President Putin believed that the invasion of Ukraine would be met with little resistance. Russian forces were expected to be eating borscht in Kiev within six weeks. Further, he anticipated that NATO would not hold firm. Germany would remain neutral, dependent upon Russian gas for manufacturing and heating.  
 
President Zelenskyy of Ukraine demonstrated unforeseen courage. The Ukrainian people again have shown the world the sacrifice they are willing to make for freedom. Germany has held undeterred in its opposition to the Russian invasion. The entire Western world is flying the Ukrainian flag. This is a plot which President Xi did not agree to embrace.
 
Now the world finds itself at the precipice of an Archduke Ferdinand assassination scenario. Leaders of dying empires will make decisions that will either contain the conflict locally or exaggerate its intensity by the elemental nature of their character.
 
Xi is under pressure by hardliners to attack Taiwan. Putin may be leading the hardliner core in Russia himself. Hardliners, by their nature, advise for expansion of aggression. In the past, they have cited western weakness as a signal that now is the time to strike.

Putin may be looking for a negotiated settlement. The illegal annexation of 20% of Ukrainian territory is architected to establish the legal threshold that the confiscated land is now Russian sovereign territory. Any encroachment by troops or military equipment would be considered a direct attack on the sovereignty of Russia. He is hopeful that a line of demarcation can be drawn similar to the divide between North and South Korea that will allow him to declare victory and stand down. He has little hope of winning an ongoing conventional war. His dilemma in holding land is the commitment and tenacity of the Ukrainian army to “never give up.” The conscripts that Putin has just called up are untrained, ill-prepared, and unmotivated to man the Ukrainian battlefield. Therefore, he is making every effort to make the West believe that the nuclear threat is real.
 
There is no world governing body that can dictate demands to Vladimir Putin. The United Nations is a world council of 193 members. Regardless of a majority vote, the permanent members of the Security Council have veto power. There are five permanent members of the Security Council. Any one of these five members can veto “substantive decisions” of the council or resolutions by the U.N. This power of veto derives from Article 27(3) of the U. N. Charter which establishes that all such decisions of the Council must be agreed to unanimously.
 
China and the Russian Federation are two of the five permanent members. The others are France, United Kingdom, and the United States.
 
For the same reason that the League of Nations in the 1930s failed to avert World War II, powerful military nations act within their own authority for their own imperial reasons.
 
The lessons of sovereign jurisdictional alliances in world history are not only replete but unfailingly consistent that less than the circumstances, it is the decisions of fearful, unprincipled, or uncommitted leaders that escalate the tenets of cultural confrontations into extracted war.
 
In the face of unrestrained dictators, it is left to the United States to stand in the gates protecting the walls of freedom. Germany has shown courage by facing the first test of exposure to the elements of an oncoming winter without adequate gas supplies. They have not wavered. Nations in need of NATO protection for their security must not be bargained for a stalemate compromise. Land for appeasement was a bad lesson learned in dealing with Hitler’s aggression in 1939 that does not need to be repeated.
 
In agonizing whether to sue Germany for peace, Winston Churchill sought wisdom from the people. Their advice was to “never give up.” Recently, a national study commissioned by AmericasOne found that 69% of the American public was more likely to support a leader who would defend the values of America rather than capitulate to the values of the world.
 
The strength of a people willing to die for freedom and to “never give up” necessitates that the United States, standing as the world’s greatest power, defends freedom no matter what the sacrifice, no matter what the cost, … no matter what desperate decisions desperate totalitarians may make.
 

If national resolve is ever in question, leaders need only to seek the wisdom of the people.

For freedom, once experienced, becomes the lifeblood of God’s purpose realized for every individual. 
 
My name is Marc Nuttle and this is what I believe.

What do you believe?

 

Marc Nuttle is an attorney based in Norman, Oklahoma, who specializes in international trade, international foreign policy, and international political affairs. He is widely recognized for his expertise in forecasting political and economic trends. He represents corporations, business projects and political entities nationally and internationally. Mr. Nuttle is the founder of the New Horizon Council, a forum for the discussion of transcendent government and business principles.