Why is the US-NATO Eager for Regime Change in Belarus?
Regime change in Belarus would help extend NATO’s presence on Russia’s border by over 700 miles.
Belarus borders Russia and despite differences it has had with Russia over the years, the current government represents a much better alternative than a client regime installed by Washington and NATO.
US and EU-backed regime change in Belarus would extend NATO’s presence along Russia’s borders by over 700 miles in addition to the over 590 mile-long presence NATO-members like Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia already make up (this includes borders shared with the Russian oblast of Kaliningrad).
It would also bring NATO troops within almost 240 miles of Moscow, just within cruising range of US-built M1A2 main battle tanks.
Watching NATO’s enlargement following the dissolution of the Soviet Union from the 1990’s onward makes it a no-brainer as to what motivates US and NATO meddling in Belarusian politics. It is all aimed toward regime change and the shaping of Belarus into an extension of ongoing efforts to smother Russia.
It is the natural continuation of what could be best described as a slow-motion blitzkrieg, where US and NATO methodically dissect Russia’s allies abroad, smother its borders, strangle its economy, and foment unrest within Russia itself.
Belarus depends on Russia economically with a significant amount of its imports and exports coming from and going to Russia. Regime change there, made to look like an immense effort to “save” the people of Belarus, would mean the cutting of these economic ties and would leave a vacuum that would take years to fill. Just like in Ukraine following US-NATO led regime change there, economic collapse would be a guarantee.
For Russia, Belarus is among its top 10 trading partners and while Russia could probably find ways of compensating for the loss of trade with Belarus should a Western-backed client regime take power, it would be yet another cut among many inflicted by the West on its besieged economy.
US Meddling in Belarus is Real, Admitted and Ongoing for Decades
Why would the opposition in Belarus choose economic collapse, the use of their territory to extend NATO’s looming presence on Russia’s borders and transform the nation into a potential battleground like neighboring Ukraine?
The fact that the opposition is funded by the US and thus making decisions best suited to Washington’s interests rather than Belarus’ helps explain why.
The US National Endowment for Democracy (NED), an organization well-known for its involvement in fostering regime change around the globe, funds a total of 35 (admitted) programs in Belarus. The specific individuals and organizations in Belarus the NED is funding are not disclosed on the NED’s website.
US funding Belarus’ opposition is nothing new.
As early as 2001 articles in Western newspapers like the CS Monitor’s “US spends millions to bolster Belarus opposition,” would reveal:
Whatever the outcome, the election is revealing a remarkably high level of US and Western involvement on the side of pro-democracy activists, which has embroiled the American ambassador and senior Western officials in a political firestorm.
The 2001 article also notes:
Washington spent $24 million in Belarus last year, and US officials say the figure is slightly higher this year. That amounts to a small fortune in this impoverished nation wedged between NATO’s eastern flank and Russia.
The article then attempts to defend the US’ verified role in manipulating Belarus’ elections. This includes a defense mounted by then US ambassador to Belarus, Michael Kozak himself.
Some might even say the arguments made sound reasonable until we recall Washington’s own reaction to the mere accusations of Russian involvement in US elections in 2016.
If unfounded claims of Russian interference in US elections illicited sanctions leveled against Russia, why would the US believe carrying out a verified campaign of political interference in Belarus is somehow “ok?”
CS Monitor’s 2001 article could just as likely have been written yesterday, except for the fact that the US has since raised the issue of election interference in 2016, exposing what is supreme hypocrisy that would be much more difficult to defend.
Of course election interference is never ok, no matter who does it. True democracy is rooted in the notion of self-determination which becomes increasingly impossible the greater outside interference becomes.
The US’ attempts to have it both ways, to use allegations of interference in its own political processes as an excuse to level yet more sanctions against Russia, while defending its own interference in Belarus’ elections – and the political processes of many other nations around the globe – only further undermines the credibility of its so-called “rules based international order” and those attempting to still defend it.
Not only is the US’ interference in Belarus wrong for all of these reasons, if successful in effecting regime change, it will only further ratchet up tensions with Russia and further endanger global peace and stability as a result.
Whatever narratives and excuses being made by the Western media to justify US-NATO interference in Belarus and whatever “dangers” they claim the current government there poses, we have seen throughout the 21st century irrefutable evidence, from Afghanistan and Iraq to Libya, Syria, and Ukraine, that the greatest danger and the very worst calamities follow rather than precede US-led interventions.