The longest-serving prime minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohamad, has stated that “the present war between Ukraine and Russia is caused by the Europeans’ love of war, of hegemony, of dominance”.
Mahathir argued that the conflict “can be interpreted as the start of the Third World War”.
Moreover, Western sanctions against Russia have meant “the world has to endure shortages of supplies”, he said.
Mahathir added that the United States is responsible for irresponsible “provocation” in East Asia, by giving weapons to Taiwan and by sending top US official Nancy Pelosi to the island to support separatist forces.
Mahathir led Malaysia from 1981 to 2003 and then again from 2018 to 2020.
He made these comments in a Twitter thread on February 24.
WORLD WAR III
1. I hesitate to write this article. I may be accused of apologising for the Russians. I am not. I think the present war between Ukraine and Russia is caused by the Europeans’ love of War, of hegemony, of dominance.
— Dr Mahathir Mohamad (@chedetofficial) February 24, 2023
Mahathir has been a longtime critic of Western neoliberal economics and the “Washington consensus”. He has emphasized that imperialism is rooted in capitalism.
The former Malaysian leader has also accused the United States of trying to provoke a war with China over Taiwan.
His full remarks from February 24 follow below:
I hesitate to write this article. I may be accused of apologising for the Russians. I am not. I think the present war between Ukraine and Russia is caused by the Europeans’ love of War, of hegemony, of dominance.
Russia was the partner of the Western Europeans (including U.S. and Canada) in the war against Germany. The moment Germany was defeated, the west declared that Russia, their partner, was their new enemy.
So they must prepare for war against Russia. And NATO was set up to form a military alliance against Russia. Russia then set up the Warsaw Pact. And a Cold war ensued. And the world had to choose between the west and the east.
After the Russians disbanded the Warsaw Pact and allowed the countries of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics to leave the bloc, NATO did not disband.
Instead the countries freed from Russian hegemony were urged to join NATO as enemies of Russia. The pressure against the weakened Russia was heightened.
As the former socialist republics join NATO and the threat against Russia heightened, Russia rebuilt its military capabilities and confronted the powerful western alliance. Tension increased as NATO forces carried out exercises close to Russia.
Provoked, Russia pre-empted with the invasion of Ukraine. That invasion can be interpreted as the start of the Third World War. There is talk of using nuclear weapons. Already the world has to endure shortages of supplies due to sanctions against Russia and Russian retaliation.
There is also provocation in the Far East. A visit by a high U.S. official to Taiwan caused an increase of tension between China and Taiwan. Both are arming and the U.S. has sold a lot of weapons to Taiwan, while China became more belligerent.
Even Malaysia is experiencing shortages and inflation. It is important that the country prepares contingency plans to deal with what may be the beginning of a Third World War.