War Conference – Burgenstock, Switzerland

From the get-go, way back in the planning stage, the Swiss-sponsored Burgenstock Conference on Ukraine (15 and 16 June), was a failure. Why? – Because there was no willingness by the “neutral” Swiss Government to invite Russia, the key partner for real Peace Talks, to the negotiating table.

This is not the first time that Russia was snubbed. Before and during the WEF Davos-circus in January 2024, a similar “peace” meeting was held, without Russia. Of course, it led to nothing – other than new condemnations and packages of sanctions against Russia.

The usual. The WEF-crowd feels they have superior powers, so they can do whatever their rules tell them to do. Maybe they are not noticing that their power is gradually slipping away, like sand through a fist.

In the case of the June 15/16 Conference, Switzerland eventually admitted that they acted on the behest of Mr. Volodymyr Zelenskyy, yes, the guy jetting around the western world begging for war billions; the man, who calls himself still President of Ukraine, even though his mandate expired more than three weeks ago. He canceled elections and simply stayed on. And the western world accepts him – Zelenskyy, the warrior-in-chief.

Was it that the Swiss listened to this green-yellow T-shirted dictator, or were they squeezed by the unelected European Commissioner or even their bosses in Washington? Obeying these days is part of the rules-based order. Down the drain with sovereignty and neutrality, let alone democracy.

The so-called Peace Conference, really was a War Conference, as much of the talk was how to get more weapons and money to Ukraine to kill more people on both sides of the front. For example, Kamala Harris, representing President Biden, showed up with a half-a-billion dollar “gift”, or “loan”(?) for Mr. Zelenskyy.

“WAR is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.”

This is a quote from a 1935 speech and short book by Smedley D. Butler,a retired United States Marine Corps Major General and two-time Medal of Honor recipient. Based on his career military experience, Butler discusses how business interests commercially benefit from warfare.


Even in the forefront of the Burgenstock summit, some of the more prominent mainstream Swiss and international news media, dared asking – why spending all this effort – and taxpayer’s money for naught, if Russia is not at the table. To no avail. They had to pull it through.

Originally some 160 delegations of countries and organizations were invited. In the end only slightly more than 90 showed up with about 52 heads of state. And among the most important ones of these “heads of state”, the more influential ones, left already in the evening of the first day, including Emmanuel Macron, Kamala Harris and Olaf Scholz.

Either their time was too precious to waste the entire weekend on the Burgenstock, or they did not want to make commitments they could not refuse – or both. In any case, it shed light on what the conference really was — a congregation of a bunch of politically anti-Russia-aligned blah-blahers, who love listening to themselves and feeling important.

Also, in the forefront of the meeting, several influential leaders, including Brazil’s President Lula da Silva and Saudi’s de facto ruler, Mohammed bin Salman – and others – said that they would not attend the Swiss event, since nothing constructive could come of it, without the main player, Russia, being at the table. 

Earlier, Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, told the Swiss right to the face, that they are untrustworthy. An understatement.

The conference proceeded along divided lines; journalists as well as participants with an ever louder crescendo questioning the absence of Russia.

According to the NYT (15 June 2024), the star of the show, President Volodymyr Zelensky, had this to say as an explanation for Russia’s absence: “There is no Russia here. – Why? Because if Russia was interested in peace, there would be no war.”

That is a simple answer, far from reality, and far from the truth. It leaves out all the history on how the war was orchestrated by the west, with the preparations of the Maidan Coup on 22 February 2014.

Remember Victoria Nuland, then Deputy Secretary of State in Charge of European affairs, in an overheard telephone conversation with the US Ambassador, Geoffrey Pyatt, saying something to the extent of “f*ck the EU! We have spent 5 billion dollars during the last ten years to prepare this Coup”.

This Coup, was to bring Ukraine – arguably the resources-richest country in Europe, other than Russia, closer to Europe and ready to become a NATO base – one step further to Moscow. An outright provocation for Russia, one that President Putin from the moment of the Coup said – NATO would be a Red Line, not to cross.

NATO’s Secretary Stoltenberg himself, repeated in the past few months on several occasions that the war started with the Maidan Coup in 2014, thereby admitting that the west was the aggressor and “villain”, not Russia.

Russia’s intervention – not an invasion – was to salvage the Russian population of the Donbass area, which since 2024 was bombarded and attacked by Kiev’s Nazi Azov battalions, killing by February 2022, at least 14,000 people, of whom 70% were women and children.

These Russian dominated provinces were not “annexed” as the west likes to say. They had their referenda and asked the Kremlin to be incorporated into the Russian Federation. Mr. Putin at first did not accept their request. But when he saw what happened in the eight years since the Coup, he reconsidered and accepted their demand.

Nazi-Kiev is following the same principles as does Nazi Zionist Israel – targeting children and women. The former are the next generation; the latter are the bearers of the next generation.

You may bet, this history and Azov-targeting was not discussed during the War Conference on the Burgenstock.

Maybe in the corridors by some of the more alert attendants, who still have a memory of historic events – and can add up cause and effect.

According to RT of 16 June 2024, twelve countries attending the Swiss Summit on Ukraine, have refused to sign the final communiqué. This is based on RIA Novosti’s report of Sunday evening.

Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said earlier on Sunday that any meaningful progress toward a peaceful resolution to the conflict would require Russia’s participation.

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer predicted that not all attendees would sign the declaration, because “it’s a question of the specific choice of words.” – He was right. Now we know that the wording is anything but neutral. Many countries did not want to commit to propaganda.

According to the RIA Novosti list, Armenia, Brazil, India, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and the UAE are among the states that did not sign the declaration, as well as four organizations, including the UN and OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe). The 79 nations that did sign the joined declaration, include, Hungary, Serbia, Argentina, Türkiye, and Georgia, as well as four international bodies, joined Ukraine in endorsing the document.

The final document was largely blaming Russia for causing “large-scale human suffering and destruction” and “creating risks and crises with global repercussions.”

It further calls
for Ukraine’s territorial integrity “within internationally recognized borders” to be respected – specifically, the restoration of Ukrainian control over the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, as well as access to sea ports in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.

The consensus of Hungary with the final report, is a surprise, knowing how President Orban made himself known as propagating abandoning the weapon and financial support for Ukraine, to stop the bloodshed. See this for more details https://www.rt.com/russia/599384-twelve-states-refuse-ukraine-peace/?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=Email .

As an unreported comment, it must be said that Russia took control of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, because the plant’s safety was at stake for lack of appropriate maintenance. In addition, it is well documented that Ukraine sabotaging the plant, thereby poisoning the surroundings, including Russian territory, with highly toxic nuclear radiation.

Was this ever mentioned during the Burgenstock sham-event?

The final Conference Communiqué also demands the release of all prisoners of war through a “complete exchange,” and the return of “deported and unlawfully displaced” Ukrainian children.

On the “unlawfully deported 20,000 children from Ukraine”, Canada’s PM Justin Trudeau, a prime scholar of Klaus Schwab’s (WEF) Academy for Young Global Leaders (YGL), said in a distorted lie-based propaganda showcase-interview, that Russia must be held accountable for this genocide-like deportation of Ukrainian children. See this (first minute) https://globalnews.ca/news/10569805/trudeau-russia-genocide-ukrainian-kids/#:~:text=The%20Prime%20Minister%20said%20The,for%20these%20crimes%20against%20humanity.%E2%80%9D .

Ukraine is also known as a major world hub for human trafficking, with focus on children. Could it be, that the Russian “deported” children were saved by Russia from trafficking and abuse? – How else could Rusia have “stolen” 20,000 children from their parents? – Think about it.Worldwide human trafficking, the bulk of which are children and women, is estimated at US$150 billion by the UN and the International Labor Office (ILO), competing with drug-trafficking and approaching the war racket. This figure is exceeded by a dark, unreported shadow number.  See this for the human trafficking racket, almost competing with the War Racket. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5846608/#:~:text=Human%20trafficking%20is%20a%20lucrative,human%20trafficking%20generates%20%24150%20billion.

Early in the Conference, Swiss President Madame Viola Amherd, host of the conference, predicted that a follow-up conference may be necessary at which Russia should be present. For good reasons, she did not say that Switzerland should again host it.

Stay tuned. Remember, Mr. Putin has offered and invited many times to sit down at the negotiating table with ALL concerned parties. So far to no avail.   

Pro-Ukraine and anti-Russia propaganda will continue, until the time comes, when President Putin’s patience reaches a breaking point.

Let us not even speculate what that could mean for the global west, notably Europe, especially if and when Macron and other NATO warrior-heads decide not only to send fighter jets to Ukraine, but also troops, and God forbid – nukes.


Peter Koenig is a geopolitical analyst and a former Senior Economist at the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO), where he worked for over 30 years around the world. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed; and  co-author of Cynthia McKinney’s book “When China Sneezes: From the Coronavirus Lockdown to the Global Politico-Economic Crisis” (Clarity Press – November 1, 2020)

Peter is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).
He is also a non-resident Senior Fellow of the Chong

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