It Would Be Funny, If It Weren’t So Sad: Putin and Hitler

It Would Be Funny, If It Weren’t So Sad: Putin and Hitler

Eric Engle

At the time I wrote “A New Cold War?” my article was rather optimistic.

Since writing the article, many unfortunate events have transpired. MH-17, a civilian airliner, was shot down by advanced missiles which were provided by Russia and could only have been operated by highly trained Russian personnel:[1] Hundreds of civilians, mostly from EU countries were killed thereby. Then, Russia moved heavy weaponry and Russian soldiers to fight in Ukraine in the guise of “Humanitarian Aid”, without permitting U.N. inspections of the “humanitarian aid” convoys, for the obvious reason that said “aid” convoys included weapons and ammunition.[2] As a result, many Russian soldiers have returned to Russia maimed or dead as “cargo 200“. What Putin probably thought would be another quick bloodless victory like Crimea in Donbass has proven to be anything but that.

Clearly Putin intends to cling to power, as can be seen in the very recent murder of a leading opposition activist named Boris Nemtsov.[3] Nemtsov was just the latest opposition activist openly murdered in Putin’s Russia, and will probably not be the last one. Putin, rational, intelligent, and ruthless usually only murders people when he thinks he must, which makes Nemtsov’s murder all the more disconcerting, because Nemtsov was no current threat to Putin. Nemtsov’s murder likely signals the start of purges which will be similar to those of the red terror of 1934-1938, just as Magnitsky’s was the first (posthumous) show trial, and more show trials may occur in Russia today as did during the red terror.[4] As well as identifying and destroying his opponents, Putin is also very likely tightening up his inner circle and removing anyone even possibly disloyal to him, one way or the other.

Information War—The Big Lie—Disinformation

These events have been accompanied by a consistent Russian policy of lie after lie as well as many half truths as part of what they call information warfare: warfare with and over information.[5] In Ukraine, Russia’s information war became a hybrid war, including terrorism sponsored by the Russian State[6] and may well conclude in a proxy war in Ukraine, possibly also in Syria.

“The big lie” is a theory ascribed to Hitler. Proponents of “the big lie” think that people do not believe small lies, but will believe outrageous lies precisely because most people suppose no one would dare say outrageous things unless they were true.[7] However, “the big lie” theory didn’t work for Hitler and, though clearly adopted by Putin and Lavrov, it will not work again because people are intelligent and facts do not change even when a number of people wrongly believe them to be other than they are.

As a German trained jurist I am painfully aware of the history of Hitler. As an intellectual I am also aware that comparing anything with Hitler or fascism usually indicates someone is being simplistic. Nonetheless, there are in fact a number of parallels between Hitler and Putin. I list them here so the reader will understand why Putin will not respond to anything other than compulsion and must be compelled to observe international law for otherwise he, like Hitler, will continue to break international law. Appeasement did not work in 1938 and will not work in 2015 because liars, thieves, and bullies respect only force and regard kind words and honesty as naïve—and an opportunity for self-aggrandizement.

Similarities Between Hitler’s Germany and Putin’s Russia

Hitler and Putin took power facing similar situations: a broken nation, economically impoverished, some of whose nationals lived in neighboring States. Both Putin and Hitler wished to restore their nation to global greatness. So, it ought not be surprising they elaborated similar policies.

Similarities Between Hitler and Putin

Hitler and Putin have much in common, but Putin is shrewder, and in that sense he is more dangerous. At the same time, however, Putin is neither genocidal nor irrational, and so Putin is less dangerous than Hitler in that sense. Putin does not believe in a global conspiracy of Jews and bankers or in the inherent superiority of the white race or the Russian nation. Yet, in simplistic terms, Hitler minus genocide equals Putin. The fact that Putin is rational yet ruthless explains the measured U.S responses to Putin’s lies, murder, corruption, and rule-breaking, at least until now.

Putin, like Hitler, is popular partly because he claims to have qualities attractive to voters, but also because he suppresses dissent, sometimes violently. Putin is politically extremely popular, and loved by his people. So was Hitler.  Putin claims to be a patriot, just like Hitler. A persuasive public speaker with a forceful personality claiming to be highly moral and to have faith in the power of God…again, the parallels between Putin and Hitler are fairly exact.

Putin, a charismatic nationalist leader like Hitler, probably studied Hitler in detail because Putin served as a KGB officer in Germany and because Russia in 1990 faced a situation similar to that of Germany in 1919. However, if Putin studied Hitler, his aim was not to prevent or halt another murdering dictatorship but rather the exact opposite. Intimidation of opponents by threats, force, and fraud, as well as smear campaigns are tactics Hitler used and Putin uses. Like Hitler, Putin built a strong political party. Hitler’s party ended up being the only legal party and formed a State-within-a-State. Putin appears to be doing likewise. Like Hitler, Putin has organized a youth movement for his party—”Nashi“. Putin, like Hitler, also has his fith column: Russian funding goes to extremist parties in Europe (left and right) and Russian nationals living outside of Russia as instruments Putin tries to use to advance Russia’s interests.

Parallel Situations Create a Parallel History

As mentioned, Hitler and Putin faced similar governance situations, leading to similar reactions. Hitler sought to govern a German nation which was split into two countries (Austria and Germany) and whose people were found also in some neighboring States in exclaves. Most Russians live in Russia, but millions of Russian nationals and Russophones live in other former Soviet republics. Like Germany in 1933, Russia in 1998 was economically bankrupt. Hitler sought to unify an impoverished nation, which had been defeated in a world war, through policies of suasion, force, and fraud. Putin similarly seeks to unify the Russophones, who had been impoverished and defeated in a cold war, also using politics of suasion, force, and fraud.

Parallel Expansionist Strategies

Hitler proceeded systematically in his plot to dominate Europe: start small and move your way up. Putin is doing likewise. Hitler first sought to expel French occupation of the Saarland, a German territory, which had the raw materials needed for the German arms industry. Then he sought to unify Germany and Austria to bring more potential soldiers into his army. He then sought to split off the German part of Czechoslovakia, the Sudetenland, and finally occupied the rest of what is now the Czech Republic in order to obtain arms and recruits. All of Hitler’s conquests until 1939 were based on bloodless diplomatic victories. Each of them was intended to create the military basis on which to proceed to the next. The pattern of invasion of smaller countries to obtain the means to conquer larger ones continued during the war. Poland, again with the national minorities excuse, then Norway and Denmark, then the low countries, then France and finally Russia, which would provide Hitler the resources he would need to fight a truly global war should the Anglo-Americans refuse a negotiated peace, which they did of course, with evident results.

Again, we can draw parallels to developments in Putin’s Russia. First, Chechnya was violently subdued to stop the continued disintegration of the former USSR. After Chechnya, Moldova and “Transnistria” was made into a “frozen conflict” as part of Putin’s strategy to stop NATO’s further eastward expansion. Then Georgia was invaded, and the useful bits split off as the (unrecognized) States of “Abkhazia” and “South Ossetia“. Now it is Ukraine’s turn with the “Donetsk People’s Republic” (DNR) and the “Lugansk People’s Republic” (LNR) as so-called states, unrecognized de jure by any state though de facto recognized by Russia. The “frozen conflict” is created, again, to prevent NATO expanding. Probably the Baltic States, with their Russophone minorities, will be next on the chopping block. However, forming a “Narva National Republic” would of course invoke the collective self-defense obligations of all NATO Member States. That step would result in the war between NATO and Russia, a war that Putin is preparing for and would lose, hard.

Thereto, in the Budapest Memorandum (5 December 1994) the United States and Russia pledged to guaranty Ukraine’s territorial integrity and in consequence Ukraine gave up thousands of nuclear weapons. Russia defies not merely international law it also attacks the credibility of the United States as guarantor of global security. This act of illegality and defiance must be met head on. Let us recall Cicero’s words of wisdom: “Our Roman Commonwealth, by defending its allies, has got possession of the world.”[8] The reputation of the United States is directly implicated in Ukraine because Ukraine renounced nuclear weapons based on the promise of the United States to guaranty the territorial integrity of Ukraine. If the United States fails to compel Russia to observe Russia’s obligations under the Budapest memorandum, if the U.S. fails to guaranty Ukraine’s security, as it promised to do – when and where will further challenges to U.S. security guaranties occur? Finally, if the U.S. fails to defend Ukraine, it would be hardly surprising if Ukraine would then seek nuclear weapons, since Ukraine gave them up in exchange for security guaranties which have clearly been ignored. Ukraine has plenty of nuclear reactors, and many Ukrainian emigrants now live in Israel. The math is not difficult here, if I may say.

In any case, whether we look at Hitler or Putin, the exclave national minority was used as a justification for wars of aggression, and he started with small victories, working his way up. The logical implication is that the policies of appeasement, of “peace in our time”, which failed to stop Hitler will also fail to stop Putin. That assessment is consistent with the observable facts of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Russia’s consequent covert invasion and occupation of Eastern Ukraine.

Putin’s Likely Strategic Goals—and Why They Are Completely Unrealistic

Putin’s apparent strategic goal is to forge an opportunistic alliance as leader of China, India, Syria, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Brazil, and/or Argentina, perhaps also South Africa. He seeks such an alliance so as to contend for global dominance.[9] However, Russia as leader of a BRICs coalition is an unrealistic goal, whether examined from a military, economic, or ideological angle—but unrealistic goals are not inconsistent with a policy of constant dissimulation and more than occasional lies. Putin’s strategic goal is unrealistic because, even if the burden of Chinese-Russian border war of 1969 could be overcome, why would China or even India wish to be led by Russia? China is no longer impoverished and very likely has no interest in being (mis)led by a much less populated country, let alone one which is corrupt, lawless, and aggressive. Ideologically, Russia has tried to articulate a coherent and attractive vision of alternative globalization, under the rubric “altermondialisme”—alternative globalization. Altermondialisme was elaborated to maximize Russian soft power. However, as the article explains, Russia failed to develop an attractive ideological model with foreign applicability due to involution and corruption.[10]

Putin may also entertain fantasies about another Molotov-Ribbentorp pact, an agreement with Germany to divide Eurasia.[11] That, too, is not particularly realistic given Germany’s rule of law culture, NATO membership, and population base.

In sum, Putin, in his search for global domination, faces a basic problem: numbers. There are only about 140 million Russians, whereas the USSR consisted of around 300 million people. That explains why Putin seeks to reestablish great Russian influence in what Russia today calls “the near abroad”, the other republics of the former Soviet Union, via the “Eurasian Union”. That goal too is unrealistic because, as the article points out, the planned economy was suboptimal and great Russian orthodoxy cannot unite all of the peoples of the former USSR tens of millions of whom are neither Slavs nor Orthodox. The numbers game gets even worse for Putin: the United States during the cold war was just 200 million people, but is now well over 300 million, and more immigrants will be coming to America, for America must now compete with (not against) a billion Chinese people. Meanwhile, Europe is now a political Union, not just an economic community, numbering over 400 million people. As mentioned, there are more than a billion people in China and another billion in India. Putin’s desire to restore Russia to superpower status, is simply unrealistic in terms of population, ideology and technology, not to mention Russia’s basic problems of domestic governance and the impending impoverishment of the Russian federation due to the sanctions regime, the drastic drop in the price of oil, and corresponding devaluation of the ruble and downgrading of Russia’s credit ratings. The Russian stock market is also a wreck, as the article shows.

What Is To Be Done

Since at least 2004, with the Orange revolution in Ukraine, and due to the writings of former Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul,[12] Putin has firmly believed that the United States wishes to instigate a “color revolution” in Russia to cause regime change in Russia like Ukraine’s orange revolution and even that NATO=NAZI. Putin’s concerns about regime change were in fact justified—there surely was a neoconservative wing of the U.S. foreign policy establishment that wanted Putin gone as late as the illegal Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008. Hillary Clinton’s claim that Putin is trying to build a new Soviet Union, 2.0 did not come from nowhere. However, there was also a liberal internationalist wing of the U.S. foreign policy establishment that sought to integrate Russia into the WTO, NATO, and the European Union, in order to foster the rule of law and peace through prosperity and interdependence. Now, however, because of the illegal annexation of Crimea, the Russian covert invasion of Ukraine, and yet another murder of a prominent Russian opposition leader the above described internal split no longer exists. Thus, the neoconservatives, with their unrealistic dishonest stated goal of instant revolutions leading to democracy and peace,[13] which everywhere only resulted in after war, torture and more terrorism, whether in Libya or Syria, Iraq, or Afghanistan[14] have succeeded in opening a new front to further drain the U.S. treasury: Ukraine, and indeed Russia itself. For once they are right: moderation was tried, and failed, and the writing on the wall is clear. One must be consequent. Although no one in the U.S. diplomatic corps will openly admit it yet, Putin has to go. The murders of Litvinenko, Politikovskaya, and now Nemtsov, as well as dozens of others are partial explanations:[15] but murder, even political murder, is a fact of life, and so long as it has only domestic consequences most countries will be unable or unwilling to confront the ugly and often murky facts with State power. But Litvinenko was murdered by radiation poisoning in London, an obvious political assassination by the Russian state on British territory. Imagine what British intelligence thinks of that?

These political murders, and others less famous, might be something other States could ignore: what does the rest of the world care if Russians kill other Russians in Russia or badly govern themselves domestically? However, the Russian invasion of Georgia, Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine concern not merely the domestic governance of Russia. They are violations of international law and concern the entire world, since every State has a vital interest in the preservation of its own territorial integrity.[16] Putin’s illegal actions, reactions in fact provoked by neoconservative Machiavellian machinations, have won him no friends and make it easy to isolate Russia globally. Putin was painted into a corner, constrained and had few choices, but among his few choices chose most unwisely, and now must face the consequences.

Putin and Galtieri

In the end, the real role model of Putin will be Argentina’s General Galtieri. Galtieri was the last dictator to invade and annex foreign territory, flouting international law thereby. Galtieri led Argentina to invade the Falklands in the early 1980s to distract his people from domestic poverty and increase his popularity. Just as Galtieri’s invasion of the Falklands led to a 20% increase in his domestic popularity, so also did Putin’s invasion of Crimea and Donbass result in a 20% increase in his popularity. However, Galtieri was ultimately forcibly ejected from the Falklands and then deposed from power because the invasion and annexation of another State’s territory is illegal under international law. Just as Galtierei’s violation of fundamental international law resulted in Galtieri’s ouster, Putin’s illegal invasions and annexation of Ukrainian territory will ultimately result in Putin’s ouster.[17]

Breaking Putin

During the cold war, the strategy of regime change was “containment“: by “merely” isolating the USSR from expansion it was believed, correctly, that the strengths of the capitalist system over time would prevail, that the Soviet system of dictatorship and lies, of control, and constraint would fail to perform as well as a system based on law and liberty. The containment strategy took roughly fifty years and was, frankly speaking, expensive. The new cold war will take but 5 years, because of a radically different correlation of forces.

The destruction of the Russian economy has already started; the sanctions regime has grown to include sectoral sanctions. The price of oil has dropped markedly to Russia’s detriment because of the fracking revolution and probable Saudi cooperation with the United States. Credit rating agencies have again downgraded Russian State obligations. Destroying the Russian economy will create general conditions of discontent but will not alone get rid of Putin: he is very popular—for now. So was Galtieri—at first. Sanctions take time but do work to constrain and even compel political actors.

As the article notes, during the Cold War we saw State sponsored terrorism and proxy warfare. It would be good to avoid that again, if possible. However, Ukraine may become a bloody, expensive “bear trap”. Hundreds of Russian soldiers, sent to what they thought would be another easy victory like Crimea, are already going home in zinc coffins as cargo 200 to mother Russia. Many more will follow unless Russia renounces its covert war of conquest.

Just as Russia is seeking to destroy the Ukrainian currency, the hryvnia, and provoke a Ukrainian bond default, in response the United States is likely seeking to devalue and destroy the ruble and perhaps even cause another Russian bond default because Russia chose to destroy Ukraine’s economy as a response to Russia’s inability to control Ukraine. The United States has no significant economic interests in Ukraine, or in Russia for that matter, and, in my opinion, was willing to see Ukrainian recognition of minority language rights and even federalization of Ukraine with special economic zones to guaranty respect of Russia’s economic interests. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was unnecessary and self-destructive.

However, even though the U.S. has no significant economic interests in Ukraine, the United States as global hegemon has a vital security interest in the maintenance of an orderly stable world governed by international law, founded on the respect of each state’s territorial integrity and in its own credibility as said guarantor. Russia has broken that basic rule of international law and is paying a high price, and will continue to pay that price until Crimea is restored to Ukraine, because the United States as global hegemon knows: if you permit one dictator to invade, occupy, and annex a neighbor, how long till the next one? When will China decide to try to annex neighboring territory, just for one explosive obvious example. The answer in China’s case is likely: never. China’s leaders are prudent and responsible. However, the Chinese leadership will certainly watch with utmost interest to see just what happens to Russia. In my opinion, Russia will be made an example of, not to serve the interests of a mythical Jewish-bankers’ conspiracy. Russia will be made an example of because if it is not, then we will see many other countries trying to do the exact same thing, and such a world would be fraught with even more wars: add thereto the fact that the United States promised to guaranty Ukraine’s territorial integrity in the Budapest Memorandum and the policy implications are obvious. Russia’s illegal annexation of Crime and covert invasion and occupation of Eastern Ukraine is not merely a matter of international law, or even of international order, it is also a matter of the credibility of the United States of America.

The isolation of Russia internationally and the consequent destruction of the Russian economy is already happening, even without expulsion of Russia from the SWIFT banking system, which is one more weapon in the arsenal of democracy. To present, the United States has exercised great restraint in seeking to deescalate the conflict to avoid a proxy war in Ukraine. However:
“Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.”

That was not a threat: it is a promise.[18] Pacta sunt servanda.

Eric Engle*

Read the author’s full-length article here.

[1] Will Stewart, Russian Secret Services May Have ‘Liquidated’ Troops Who Shot Down MH17 and ‘Are Planting Bugs On Smartphones and Laptops of Investigators’, Mail Online (Mar. 6, 2015),

[2] Ukraine Crisis: Russia Aid Convoy ‘Invades Ukraine’ BBC News (Aug. 22, 2014),

[3] Ishaan Tharoor, Echoes of Stalin In the Murder of a Putin Foe in Moscow, Wash. Post (Mar. 4, 2015),

[4] Victor Davidoff, Hello, 1937, Moscow Times (June 13, 2012),

[5] Kerry: Moscow Lying ‘To My Face’ Over Ukraine, Aljazeera (Feb. 25, 2015),

[6] Euromaidan Press, More Russian Terrorists Arrested in Kharkiv, (Mar. 4, 2015), (source: СБУ оголосила про затримання чергових російських диверсантів у Харкові

[7] “But it remained for the Jews, with their unqualified capacity for falsehood, and their fighting comrades, the Marxists, to impute responsibility for the downfall precisely to the man who alone had shown a superhuman will and energy in his effort to prevent the catastrophe which he had foreseen and to save the nation from that hour of complete overthrow and shame. By placing responsibility for the loss of the world war on the shoulders of Ludendorff they took away the weapon of moral right from the only adversary dangerous enough to be likely to succeed in bringing the betrayers of the Fatherland to Justice. All this was inspired by the principle—which is quite true within itself—that in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods. It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying” Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, vol. I, ch. X (1926); “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”; Joesef Goebbels: On the “Big Lie”, Jewish Virtual Libr., (last visited Mar. 14, 2015); Ion Mihai Pacepa & Ronald J. Rychlak, Disinformation: Former Spy Chief Reveals Secret Strategies for Undermining Freedom, Attacking Religion, and Promoting Terrorism (2013).

[8] Francis Barham, Esq., The Political Works of Marcus Tullius Cicero: Comprising his Treatise on the Commonwealth; and his Treatise on the Laws, translated from the original, with Dissertations and Notes in Two Volumes, Vol. 1 (1841). “No war can be undertaken by a just and wise state, unless for faith or self-defense. This self-defense of the state is enough to ensure its perpetuity, and this perpetuity is what all patriots desire. Those afflictions which even the hardiest spirits smart under poverty, exile, prison, and torment private individuals seek to escape from by an instantaneous death. But for states, the greatest calamity of all is that death, which to individuals appears a refuge. A state should be so constituted as to live for ever. For a commonwealth, there is no natural dissolution, as there is for a man, to whom death not only becomes necessary, but often desirable. And when a state once decays and falls, it is so utterly revolutionized, that if we may compare great things with small, it resembles the final wreck of the universe. All wars, undertaken without a proper motive, are unjust. And no war can be reputed just, unless it be duly announced and proclaimed, and if it be not preceded by a rational demand for restitution. Our Roman Commonwealth, by defending its allies, has got possession of the world.” (emphasis added).

[9] Yuri Paniyev, Russia Reveals Its Strategy for BRICS Cooperation, Russia Beyond the Headlines (Mar. 26, 2013),

[10] Geoffrey Pleyers, Brève Histoire du Mouvement Altermondialiste, La Vie des Idées, (Mar. 29, 2013),

[11] Andrew Stuttaford,  Molotov, Ribbentrop, Putin, Euroskeptics, National Review (Nov. 10, 2014)

[12] Anders Åslund & Michael McFaul, Revolution in Orange: The Origins of Ukraine’s Democratic Breakthrough (2006). Yet, the neoconservative orchestrated revolution in Ukraine failed to create democracy or the rule of law. So much for instant solutions to complex problems. If the Orange Revolution of 2004 was a “breakthrough” then why was there a Eurorevolution of 2014? McFaul was the wrong choice for Moscow for the same reason that neoconservatives are the wrong choice for America: either they place simplistic faith in quick solutions or they are masking a hidden agenda.

[13] The neoconservatives proceed from a cynical assessment of humanity founded on dishonesty “because man is by nature evil, he therefore needs dominion. But dominion can be established, that is, men can be unified only in a unity against—against other men. Every association of men is necessarily a separation from other men…the political thus understood is not the constitutive principle of the state, of order, but a condition of the state,” Heinrich Meier, Carl Schmitt and Leo Strauss: the Hidden Dialogue 125 (1995) which is machiavellian, i.e. instrumentalist. Leo Strauss, Thoughts on Machiavelli (1958). On this vile base of lies they then propose audacious policies which result in endless disastrous wars. See, e.g., Glenn Greenwald, Wes Clark and the Neocon Dream, Salon (Nov. 26, 2011), Given their cynical Machiavellian outlook, one may rightly question not merely whether the neoconservatives goal of instant revolution leading to democratic freedom peace and prosperity; one may also question whether that was the real goal of their policy of endless wars in the first place. “The process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event—like a new Pearl Harbor” Project for the New American Century, Rebuilding America’s Defenses (Sept. 2000), available at: (emphasis added).

[14] Kevin MacDonald, Iraq Nightmare, Occidental Observer (June 13, 2014), While the stated purpose of the neoconservatives, who are known Machiavellians, is to generate revolutions in the Arab world—mass uprisings—to create democratic rule of law states, their real purpose is to create permanent disorder: divide and rule. They appear to be trying to follow Rome and Britain with diviso et impero—divide and rule. Britain struggled for centuries to prevent the emergence of a dominant continental power, fighting three global wars in the process (for the war against Napoleon was indeed global). Ultimately, Britain’s policies proved unsustainable and the greatest empire in world history was bankrupted. On British policy of divide and rule, to prevent the emergence of a dominant power on the European continent, see J. Pirenne, The Tides of History Vol. II: From the Expansion of Islam to the Treaties of Westphalia 429 (1963).  The real purpose of the neoconservatives is similar, divide and rule.  The neoconservatives seek to prevent the emergence of a dominant leading Arab power to prevent the emergence of a unified Arab world, which neoconservatives presuppose would oppose U.S. and Israel. The 2008 financial crash again shows that diviso et impero is financially unsustainable. A sustainable foreign policy elaborates a vision of rules and rulership in which the governed consent to being governed because they see such consent as in their self-interest.

[15] Terry Morant, Boris Nemtsov Joins List of Dead Vladimir Putin Critics, ABC News (Feb. 28, 2015), at:

[16] The Charter of the United Nations, Article 2(4) provides: “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.” The right of each state to the respect of its territorial integrity predates the Charter and entails the right to armed self defense in the cases where it be violated. Michael Glennon, Preemptive Use of Force: A Reassessment: Panel 1:The Legal Framework, 29 Fletcher F. of World Aff. 21, 23 (2005). A tougher question is whether that norm is non-derogable. Logically, however, it cannot be, due to the right of national self determination. Some, however, argue that the right to respect of territorial integrity be a jus cogens norm. See, e.g. Certain Activities Undertaken by Nicaragua in the Frontier Region (Costa Rica v. Nicaragua), 2013 I.C.J. 18, 63 (July 16) (separate opinion of Judge ad hoc Dugard), available at (“The prohibition on the use of force in international relations is accepted as a peremptory norm, a norm of jus cogens”). This prohibition is directly related to the principle of respect for territorial integrity, as demonstrated by Article 2 (4) of the Charter of the United Nations which prohibits the ‘threat or use of force against the territorial integrity . . . of any State’. In these circumstances, it is difficult to resist the conclusion that respect for the territorial integrity of a State by other States is a norm of jus cogens.” But see, Ulf Linderfalk, The Effect of Jus Cogens Norms: Whoever Opened Pandora’s Box, Did You Ever Think About the Consequences?  18 Eur. J. Int’l. L., 853, 864 (2008), available at (arguing that jus cogens, though a positive law, when taken to a logical extreme with regard to certain international laws must inevitably leads to legal incongruities).

[17] Robert C. Eidt, Argentina, Encyclopedia Britannica (Jan. 27, 2015),

[18] President John Kennedy, Inaugural Address, (Jan. 20 1961), available at

* J.D. St. Louis, DEA (Mention, Félicitations du Jury) Paris II, DEA Paris X, LL.M. Eur. Bremen, LL.M. Humboldt, Dr.Jur. Bremen. SSRN: