Well, then I might as well address it. I am talking about this whole AUKUS affair and France losing huge contact on submarines for Royal Australian Navy. At this stage I am not interested in technical minutiae of this whole scandal, because it is useless anyway to concentrate on technical details of something which may change many times before, and if, it comes to fruition. I am, however, as always, interested in fundamental factors defining the framework. Le Drian and anyone in France' political top can express their frustration and play geopolitical games whatever they want, such as running to India:
On Friday, France recalled its ambassadors from Washington and Canberra after Australia scrapped a major submarine program with France in favor of acquiring nuclear-powered submarines with the help of the US and UK. Paris furiously protested the new arrangement between Australia, the US and UK, known as AUKUS. Le Drian called the ditching of French-Australian submarine program "a stab in the back."
It still doesn't change the fact that in the times of a severe, terminal crisis of Pax Americana and Western liberalism, France is not a global superpower and is only important as an attachment to the Anglo-Saxon world which is in a desperate fight for its survival as one of the global power poles. Simple as that. France is simply not that important for this existential struggle. In the end, D.C. and London care about themselves first, however distorted and delusional this care is, and Paris is viewed merely as a "food" and will be consumed if necessity and opportunity arise. You all may counter that France has her own nuclear deterrent, she has Renault and is the home for Airbus, she has her own space program etc. Right. It all is present, but let's not forget the definition, not West's political pseudo science BS, of global power. Right, the definition is Jeffrey Barnett's (not to be mistaken with Corelli Barnett) 14 points and allow me to remind you what they are. Barnett listed them in the US Army War College quarterly Parameteres in 1994. No matter how France's achievements are considered, some of them with well deserved respect, France simply does not dominate any of those 14 points.
France does not dominate access to space, US, Russia, China and India do, France doesn't control Sea Lanes of Communications (SLOC), the United States, China and Russia do, France certainly does not provide the majority of the finished goods, China does and France certainly does not dominate the high-tech weapons industry, US and Russia do. Even if to imagine that tomorrow Marine Nationale will add two other nuclear powered aircraft carriers to its order of battle, this still will not make France a global power. Militarily and economically France is a second tier power, which surrendered part of her sovereignty to supranational organizations such as NATO and EUand thus fails in the most important criterion defining global or superpower--fully independent and protected global policies. France also is not capable to create and maintain any kind of meaningful alliance on her own. The United States and Russia can, while China, due to her economic and demographic enormity, is an alliance in and of herself. Plus China and Russia DO have alliance between each-other.
So, in this case, being a second tier regional power, France cannot expect her interests to be seriously considered when one talks about such immense, financially, projects as AUKUS. Alliances are created not only against someone but also for an exclusive access to capitals and markets, especially weapons markets, within those alliances. In this particular case France is an outsider and no matter what hyperbole frustrated French politicians use describing "betrayal" of France by Anglo-Saxons, it is what it is. Scott Ritter may well be right when describing this AUKUS thingy as: this is a story of geopolitically driven military procurement gone mad. But when one considers US' economic state which can only be described as FUBAR or clusterfuck, all means are good for maintaining a cash flow and France was simply removed on the road to this cash flow. Simple as that. Desperate times, desperate measures. Truism, really.
So, no matter how much we discuss technical details of this whole circus, some lessons from it are already obvious and here I subscribe to every word in Ritter's conclusion:
But the fact remains that the US has no meaningful military counter to China, the UK is not capable of sustaining any credible military presence in the Pacific, and Australia cannot afford to acquire and operate a force of eight nuclear-powered attack submarines. The Australian nuclear submarine project is a dangerous joke that only further exacerbates the existing geopolitical crisis with China by injecting a military dimension which will never see the light of day.
This whole AUKUS thing, as I already stated previously, is a great indicator of a waning power of the United States, which in desperate attempts to preserve the remnants of her once self-proclaimed global hegemony, will go to any length, hopefully, short of nuclear war, and if it takes to humiliate and "sacrifice" France, so be it. Western Europe should get ready to be, as I wrote for many years (I quote one from 2 years ago):
Macron makes one mistake here. Well, several mistakes, actually. For starters "Pushing Russia from Europe" was not a "strategic mistake"--that was the plan and main objective of Washington, headed then by Obama and being continuously implemented now by Trump Administration. Moreover, "pushing Russia" out is not just about Russia, but by implication about Europe itself. Europe as it exists today is of no interest to Russia in any metaphysical sense, except for purely economic interest as a market, but majority of Russians are counting their blessings now because of this "pushing out" largely succeeding. Europe, meanwhile, is a sacrificial lamb for the United States, which, in a desperate attempt to save herself, will demolish Europe economically because European elites are a pathetic parody on a required political leadership, some of them are outright imbeciles, not to mention that vast swathes of them are effectively products of the American selection. So, no--let Europe deal with the US, or vice-versa, and keep Russia out of it.
So, don't tell me that I didn't warn you. Oh, come on, the United States needs to eat too. The moment France reintegrated into NATO fully in 2009, a process championed by then President Sarkozy, it was all over for France. Too bad they didn't see it coming. Well, they see it now. As they say: better late than never. Tolstoy saw it long time ago:
A Frenchman is self-assured because he regards himself personally, both in mind and body, as irresistibly attractive to men and women. An Englishman is self-assured, as being a citizen of the best-organized state in the world, and therefore as an Englishman always knows what he should do and knows that all he does as an Englishman is undoubtedly correct. An Italian is self-assured because he is excitable and easily forgets himself and other people. A Russian is self-assured just because he knows nothing and does not want to know anything, since he does not believe that anything can be known. The German's self-assurance is worst of all, stronger and more repulsive than any other, because he imagines that he knows the truth - science - which he himself has invented but which is for him the absolute truth.
Well, what can I say. It is the 21st Century and France learned absolutely nothing since her last Titan and Hero departed in 1969. Or, rather, was forced out by what many still consider a color revolution organized by the US. Time to face consequences.
Meanwhile Russia continues to build those missile corvettes as if there is no tomorrow, the latest one, Grad (Hail), was floated out at Zelenodolsk yesterday (video in Russian).
With new 4,500 kilometer range 3M14M coming up, these ships can pretty much strike anything in Europe from some river or lake deep within Russia's territory. Just in case. In other related news:
TEHRAN (Iran News) - Moscow Signs Deal With Tehran to Boost Aircraft Sales.
The Russian Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) and the Civil Aviation Organization of the Islamic Republic of Iran signed a Memorandum of Understanding on September 6, 2021, intended to "create favorable conditions for the approval of the standard design of Russian civil aviation equipment when exported to Iran." The agreement is the result of negotiations that took place between the two aviation authorities in June 2021, Rosaviatsia explained in a statement.
Iran will get a large number of fully Russified SSJ-100Rs. MS-21 is in line, once Russia satisfies her internal commercial aviation needs.