“Zelensky good … Putin baad …”

2 May

I’ve set out in many posts my reasons and evidence for saying a proxy war in Ukraine is being driven by US determination to retain control of a dollarised world in the face of Eurasia rising.

Yes, I’ve been left face-egged on very important detail. I breezily claimed that Russia would not invade Ukraine. On this I’d put too much store in military assessments like that of Paul Craig Roberts, which said Russia need do no such thing. 1 Superiority in missiles would enable her to safeguard her sovereignty – defending ethnic Russians in the Donbass, getting Kiev to honour  Minsk II and halting the advance of a hostile alliance the USA would never tolerate on its own borders – without putting boots on the ground. That had me inviting readers, nine days before the invasion, to tell me why in God’s name would Vladimir Putin, Sergey Lavrov, Sergey Shoigu et al  want to invade Ukraine?

The Wrong Question. I should have asked, why would they invade Ukraine when they knew the risks?  2 To which my answer should have been that they’d exhausted peaceful responses to a quarter century of lies, insults, broken promises and endless provocation. None of those who share my view of the USA as prime culprit – yet decry Russia’s move – have offered a grown-up account of what else she could have done.

Of course, a vastly larger constituency, too far gone on the Kool-aid to get its collective head around the notion of western culpability, is untroubled by the need for any such account …

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I’ve also said that because of a war Washington could halt tonight with minimal concessions to Moscow, should it so wish – it so doesn’t! – the world is moving closer to the unthinkable than at any time … since Hiroshima and Nagasaki.”

Two observations. One, the public has been so thoroughly sold on the Standing Up To Russia narrative as to be blind to the appalling gamble being taken by those with the best insurance money can buy. 3 Two, three-quarters of a century after America nuked two middling Japanese cities for reasons other than the widely accepted Lesser-of-Two-Evils defence, the nightmare scenario has not, despite close shaves like Cuba ’62 – and two or three others we weren’t told about – materialised. Homo sapiens sapiens being more of a psychological than logical animal, the leap from it hasn’t happened  to ergo it won’t happen  is a short one.

Especially when aided by the diversions and lies of omission of systemically corrupt media.

These two factors – Wall Street as uniquely responsible for this war, and a Doomsday Clock at 100 seconds to midnight – are fundamental. That said, this post and others in the pipeline will explore secondary but still hugely important aspects of the state we’re in.

For instance the twin themes of this post’s title. Everybody loves a heroes ‘n villains yarn, right? No taxing of the grey cells; nothing so arduous as thinking required. Just grab yourself a coke and bucket of popcorn, and get your ass comfortable for what the good ol’ US of A does best.

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Zelensky good …

I don’t know if Zelensky is odious or merely weak.  (Weak as in politically. I’ve neither desire nor competence to be drawn into a character assessment of the man who shot to global stardom a little over two months ago, since when we’ve heard more than enough of the I Love Volodymir cult which liberal opinion-shapers have manufactured and are now milking.)

Here’s an exchange below my April 9 post, Ukraine: a military assessment:

bevin – this article, with a simple timeline and very useful maps helps non-experts understand what is happening:

https://covertactionmagazine.com/2022/04/09/the-united-states-and-ukraine-started-the-war-not-russia/

steel city scribe – Thanks, bevin. Useful. I’ll likely find a place for this in a future post. One minor carp. I wouldn’t say that in May 2019 Zelensky was elected on a “false peace promise”. As I read it – and I could of course be wrong – this former comedian likely meant it when he said he wanted better relations with Russia and his own country’s ethnic Russians. Way out of his depth, he soon succumbed to currents less clueless and far more ruthless.

bevin – I agree. What was false was Zelensky’s claim that, once elected he would be able to act as a ‘servant of the people’, when he knew he was an actor hired by an oligarch. What he was probably unaware of was the relationship between his patron and the fascists. Not to mention their even more sinister relationship with the US. In fact he was a servant of an oligarch who is a creature of the fascists who are in Uncle Sam’s pocket. The voters were really taken for a ride.

steel city scribe – you refer [in the ‘oligarch’ remark] to Igor Kolomoyskyi, the billionaire corporate raider who, besides his palship with one Hunter Biden, funds both Volodymyr Zelenski and – tada! – the Azov Battalion.

Here’s a colourful but well sourced account of Igor, assembled, its author tells us, “the old fashioned American way – by following the money”.

https://mronline.org/2022/03/10/discerning-volodymyr-zelensky/

And here’s a briefer but more sober account from Al Jazeera. (It omits Igor’s funding of Zelenski but that’s a matter of factual record.)

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/3/1/who-are-the-azov-regiment

Is this man a pliant fool?  A puppet, as former US colonel and CIA analyst Douglas McGregor insists? Pass. The question is in any case subordinate to the intelligence insulting notion that a proxy war for which an eye-watering price will be paid by Europe and global south – even if we do avoid the ultimate nightmare 4 – is a struggle for democracy against a neighbourhood thug painted in luridly orientalist stripe. 5

On the Ukraine aspects of this flat-earthish claim, try this from former UN correspondent Joe Lauria, now at Consortium News …

… or this one from Defend Democracy Press: Risking nuclear war for a corrupt, increasingly repressive Ukraine. That’s a misnomer of course. Since DC willingness to fight Russia down to the last Ukrainian betrays zero concern for that nation, a more accurate title would be Risking nuclear war for the Yankee dollar.

Here’s a 30 second history lesson from America’s most decorated Marine:

Nevertheless that Defend Democracy piece assembles more than enough detail …

… Human Rights Watch’s 2021 report on Ukraine also was far from favorable. “Justice for conflict-related abuses by government forces, including arbitrary detentions, torture or ill-treatment remained elusive.” Equally troubling, “the government proposed legislative amendments that threaten freedom of expression and media. Journalists and media workers faced harassment and threats connected to their reporting.” Those were not exactly the characteristics of what Western admirers contend is a “young and vibrant democracy”

… to kick the fighting for democracy  thesis into its rightful place in the garbage can.

As for more global aspects of fighting for democracy,  try this MintPress report on how outlets critical of so outlandish a thesis have fallen foul of the behemoths of Silicon Valley:

… Google has sent a warning shot across the world, ominously informing media outlets, bloggers, and content creators that it will no longer tolerate certain opinions when it comes to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Earlier this month, Google AdSense sent a message to a myriad of publishers, including MintPress News, informing us that, “Due to the war in Ukraine, we will pause monetization of content that exploits, dismisses, or condones the war.” This content, it went on to say, “includes, but is not limited to, claims that imply victims are responsible for their own tragedy or similar instances of victim-blaming, such as claims that Ukraine is committing genocide or deliberately attacking its own citizens” …

Note the blanket nature of this censorship by financial strangulation, with no exception made for claims which happen to be evidentially based. Seriously scary. Postmodernism has found its logical resting place in a post truth era.

Putin baad …

Right now the safest, most redundant, least courageous thing to do is condemn Vladimir Putin. (Caitlin Johnstone)

Navalny? Putin poisons water in his hotel room. He gets sick and is taken to a Russian state hospital. Nobody kills him there, though a hospital is an easy place to do so. Doctors find no poison, authorities approve his transfer to Berlin, where medics find novichok and accuse Russia. France agrees, EU imposes sanctions. Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?

Skripals? What kind of coincidence theorist  doesn’t raise eyebrows at the location, a stone’s throw from Porton Down, and the fact the first person on the scene is a senior army nurse?

Russiagate? Only the sublimely ignorant – a large constituency I grant you – still buy this DNC concoction to unseat Trump, aided by a deep state seeking to steer his presidency away from working with Moscow to fight terrorism. See  why Trump rolled over …

Let me speed-dial through this final section using bullet points, from least to most significant.

  • I’ve no way of saying whether Mr Putin is a good or bad guy when my only sources are on the one hand western media whose business models oblige them to favour power blocs highly motivated to discredit a major obstacle to their continuing rule …

A firmly Atlanticist Guardian relies on advertising and oligarch donors like Bill Gates. Its reputation for independence on matters not vital to power gives it credibility with a liberal intelligentsia on matters which are. See Monolithic control at the Guardian?

… and on the other, people who “know some real Russians” and presume on the basis of miniscule and skewed samples to speak with authority. What I will  say is that the man has served his socially conservative nation – if raised living standards and life expectancy, and beefed up capacity to resist US bullying, count for anything – rather more effectively than his drunkenly compliant predecessor did. 6

  • Nations under siege can rarely afford the “open society” freedoms the west has grown used to. Those freedoms, and the welfarism and relative equality of opportunity which make them no threat to class rule, are conditional on a prosperity – now disappearing as swiftly as the weakness of organised labour allows – underwritten by exploitation of the global south. As noted above in respect of censorship, they are under attack as never before in my lifetime.

And as some of us are saying, there’s a two word answer to the oft played Freedom of Expression card. Julian Assange.

  • The idea that a Washington/Wall Street led west hates Russia for its authoritarianism, real or imaginary, is an absurdity to which there’s another two word response. Saudi Arabia.
  • The idea that a Washington/Wall Street led west has the moral authority to condemn “Russian aggression” both flies in the face of recent history – notably but by no means exclusively in Middle East and Latin America – and attests to the power of the most extensive, most sophisticated and most multi-dimensional propaganda system ever.

From his 2005 Nobel Prize acceptance speech, here’s playwright Harold Pinter:

The crimes of the USA have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few have talked about them. You have to hand it to America. It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.

Finally and most overridingly important:

  • Regardless of whether Russia led by Vladimir Putin is good, bad or indifferent, what Caitlin Johnstone called “the most tyrannical regime on earth by a massive margin”  has spent decades preparing to crush one of the two greatest challengers to its ‘right’ to rule the world with a merciless venality sold to us as benevolence. As the Ukraine endgame now plays out, true progressives will, whatever the nature of the Russian Federation, speak out in favour of its just demands, and against the deadly agendas of the most tyrannical regime on earth.

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  1. Not just Paul Craig Roberts but other voices I respect – like the excitable but gifted and well connected Pepe Escobar, a more sober Gilbert Doctorow and the GrayZone’s Aaron Maté – were saying similar. My fault, which I own and mean to learn from, was to suspend my inclination to leave oceans of room for what I don’t and can’t know in the fog of war: hot or cold; direct or proxy.
  2. Some commentators, Noam Chomsky for instance, have drawn parallels with the USSR’s invasion of Afghanistan. In both cases trouble was stirred by the USA: midwife to Al Qaeda; backer of Ukraine’s neo-Nazis. But where I disagree with Chomsky and others, and with a Zbigniew Brzeziński who bragged of his “Afghan Trap” to give the Soviets “their own Vietnam”, is in saying the Kremlin did see the trap – of DC-funded Islamist resistance to social reforms you and I would say were progressive – and had tried to avoid it, a fact reflected in deep divisions within the Politbureau. When finally Moscow made its move in December 1979, it was with reluctance and foreboding. So while I agree with Chomsky that the parallels with Ukraine are striking, not least that in both cases Russia/USSR was not invading a country halfway across the globe but addressing a threat on her borders – a small detail lost on the pushers of a specious equivalence which denounces both USA and Russia as imperialist – I say he draws the wrong conclusions. He isn’t alone in this.
  3. See for instance this Forbes piece on billionaire bunker owners preparing for the ultimate underground escape.
  4. See this AntiWar.com piece of two days ago. It begins: “On Sunday, Congressman Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) announced a new Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF). If passed [it] will allow Biden to deploy American troops to defend Ukraine if Russia uses chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons.”  Since we know from Iraq and Syria how good America’s neo-cons are at detecting WMDs on zero evidential basis, we should be terrified. Or rather, take comfort in the fact that post Vietnam Americans get antsy when their sons and daughters come home in body bags from far-off lands, and Congressman Kinzinger may therefore be doing little more than grandstanding; parading his hawkish credentials. That can pay dividends a year or two down the line, given that fast revolving door between Capitol Hill and a military-industrial complex which knows how to look after its pet politicians.
  5. Orientalism, a fancy term for racism, was touched on in a footnote to Ukraine in La La Land. Coined by Palestinian American, Edward Said, it is usually reserved for Arabs and Persians but is equally applicable in a Slavic context: these people are not like us; they gas children and do other terrible things at the drop of a hat …

  6. See Chapters 10-11 of Naomi Klein’s meticulously documented The Shock Doctrine for what went down on Boris Yeltsin’s watch.

7 Replies to ““Zelensky good … Putin baad …”

  1. I have recently been reading various sites who are very concerned about the US BioWarfare Labs in Ukraine and in fact all over the world. The Chinese obviously know the threat is real where manipulation of the sino genome is concerned and Russian Officials have also shown deep concerns on the purchase by the US of Slavic DNA in connection with GM pathogens.
    By now, everyone knows what the US is capable of to include fire bombing of Tokyo, Nuclear bombing of Japan, Disease bombing of North Korea, etc, etc, so my concern also is in the arena of Bio Warfare.
    Given that the US will never let go of it’s position and perceived Right To Rule The World and accepting that both China and Russia have hypersonic missiles easily adapted to carrying nuclear warheads should they choose this option, it seems to me, that the US is unlikely to risk a war in which it’s soil is likely to suffer the consequences of it’s actions.

    It feel it more likely that if the US can limit the spread of a pathogen to those peoples whose deaths do not prick their conscience and I don’t believe many in Washington are burdened with such a consideration, then all they have to do is wait for the opportune moment and eradicate a few billion people and when the all clear is given, march in and take what they want(as they always have). Job done.

    I am sure you think I am an alarmist, but given the volumes of information I have gathered over many years, I really don’t think we should discount the option:

    a) it’s a lot more difficult to prove the case against the US, they have had plenty of practice in covering up their hideous activities previously.

    b) who will be left to do anything about it?.

    c) the US will have all the power, food and resources even it could wish for.

    If bombs are going to be dropping around me with radiation fall out to follow, I do not want to be one of the survivors waiting for my miserable end and I can only hope that I don’t have any Slavic or Sino DNA. Pity those who do though since much of Europe is mongrel to put it crudely.

    The US will probably see it as making a worthy contribution to the fight against Global Warming by disposing of so many eaters on “humanitarian grounds” such is their twisted mindset.

    I still don’t believe that the US would be so blind and morally, no ethically, no I don’t mean that either, stupid, that’s the word, enough to risk all at the expense of their own country.

    I could be wrong of course.

    Thank you for this post and for offering up a possible alternative to the MAD, NWO nightmare that so many of us await apprehensively.

    Susan:)

    • If bombs are going to be dropping around me with radiation fall out to follow, I do not want to be one of the survivors waiting for my miserable end …

      My neither Susan. Hence the Kruschev quote gracing, at time of writing, my masthead:

      The survivors would envy the dead.

    • Thanks for these links Jams. Both good reads worth the effort.

      Whilst he does state the obvious Ross also seems to make the mistake of treating military capability like a black box. The US spends more money than everyone else combined, ergo, it must by definition have the most effective military.

      Whether military or anything else that is not how the real world works. Andrei Martyanov, among others, spends a lot of time hammering home the point that its bang per buck that count – quality rather than quantity. A criteria also relevant and applicable to the calibre of the leadership and decision making chain and the systems employed.

      • This example demonstrating the point:

        https://thesaker.is/sitrep-operation-z-yeah-we-have-some-big-deals/

        “Vadim Zholko, a soldier of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: “Their Javelin and NLAW grenade launchers, which were very much advertised, showed themselves in practice as they really were. There were misfires. They usually shoot one out of four, ”said the prisoner. The fired projectiles explode at fifty meters before reaching the target, or do not work at all. “That is, there were many of those whose batteries were expired,” the prisoner of war shared his impression of what he saw. The man complained that the training at the training grounds was mainly theoretical – “they showed it in a fast way.” Why misfires regularly occur was not explained to recruits. The reason became clear during the fighting – most of the batches of weapons had an expired shelf life. Cheaper NLAW complexes also turned out to be far from perfect.”

    • Thanks for both pieces, Jams. I skim read the first just now – it looks to be an excellent example of reason supported by facts – and will read it and the second piece more carefully later today.

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