The big story right now is Putin’s official recognition of eastern Ukraine, specifically Donetsk and Luhansk, which will assuredly lead to their annexation by Russia.
This is supposedly the greatest horror in international affairs since Hitler annexed the Sudetenland in 1938.
NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg called this “the most dangerous moment for European security in a generation,” although last I checked Ukraine was not a member of NATO.
The bottom line is that Putin’s actions are an unprecedented violation of all that is holy and sacred in the post-Cold War world order. This is an unimaginable and flagrant infraction and solidifies Putin’s status as a singular and unique evil in the world–by the far the most rapacious and nefarious character on the world stage, and in a class unto himself.
It was all peace and harmony and love and kumbaya–until PUTIN had to come along and bring an end to the innocence. Obviously, his violation of the TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™ of Ukraine was an unprecedented breach of global harmony and tranquility, and it confirms that he is simply a Bad Actor of the highest order.
This is how he’s viewed not only among US foreign policy elites, but also among a great deal of Americans who have fallen for the propaganda. Putin is a real-life Hollywood Villain: every nation in the world supposedly wants peace, but he wants war. We’re in favor of life, Putin is in favor of death. We’re in favor of light, he is in favor of darkness. We’re in favor of freedom, he’s in favor of oppression.
And it is all because he is a one-dimensional Bad Guy From The Movies. He’s nothing more than the antagonist to America’s protagonist.
He has no rational objectives; he does not care about his country–he is simply evil and badness personified in the world.
America is in favor of Good Things, and Putin is in favor of Bad Things. He simply wants to watch the world burn, and that’s it. He wants to cackle maniacally while the world is thrown into chaos and disharmony.
And you know what? It’s not even just Putin. It’s Russia in general: Russia is simply the Bad Guy Nation–always have been, always will be. They live for war. All they want to do is go to war and cause problems for the world.
Because they are the Bad Guys in this story, and they are evil purely for evil’s sake. Russians do evil because they are evil, and they are evil because they do evil. Simple as that. They don’t have hopes and dreams, they don’t have families, they don’t have careers, they don’t have personalities–they are literally an entire race of people who live to antagonize America, and the rest of the world.
This is the narrative Americans have been fed for nearly 80 years now. The Russians are the bad guys in almost all our movies–them, or the Nazis of course, but they’re largely interchangeable (meanwhile “we” never would’ve defeated the Nazis without the Soviets sacrificing 27 million of their people for the Allied cause).
Most Americans never even question this, either. They never question why they are brainwashed to hate Russia, and if that hate is actually warranted. Those who have thought about the question probably concluded that it was because of the Cold War and because the Russians were communist (never mind the millions of Americans who still to this day believe the Russians are communists).
More “informed” Americans may point to the invasion of Georgia in 2008, Putin’s internal suppression of dissidents like Navalny, the annexation of Crimea in 2014, the myth that the Russians HACKED THE ELECTION™ in 2016, and now, of course, the situation with Ukraine.
This is what people will point to as evidence that Putin’s Russia is The Bad Guy of the world.
I mean, come on: he’s violating the TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️ of Ukraine!
Ukraine! Our most treasured ally!
Of course, America would never invade anyone. Other than Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Libya, Panama and Somalia. And all the governments that America has overthrown without launching a military invasion, like Iran, Guatemala, Chile, the Congo–and that’s just what we know about officially.
Also, we have launched attacks either on or within: Pakistan, Bosnia, Cambodia, Laos, Grenada, Yemen, Syria, Korea, Cuba, Yugoslavia, Yemen, Niger, Haiti, Sudan, Uganda, etc.
But Russia is still worse!
Most of us in America are ridiculously ignorant to the amount of death and human suffering our government has caused around the world.
Caitlin Johnstone got right to the point yesterday with her Substack post: “Perhaps the US Should Shut the Fuck Up About Respecting Other Countries’ Sovereignty”:
Pointing out things the US empire has done while it shrieks about the actions of a foreign government will get you accused of “whataboutism”, but it’s not a whataboutism. It’s pointing out that the US is the absolute least qualified government on earth to comment on the issue at hand, so it should shut the whole entire fuck up about it. If the US wants to legitimately complain about the transgressions of unaligned governments, then it must cease being the worst transgressor.
Some might say, “Two wrongs don’t make a right.” Okay. But inflicting ten thousand wrongs definitely means you should shut the fuck up about anyone doing one wrong.
This would after all be the same empire that has is currently circling the planet with hundreds of military bases and waging wars which have killed millions and displaced tens of millions just since the turn of this century. Its sanctions and blockades are starving people to death en masse every single day. It works to destroy any nation which disobeys its dictates by toppling their governments via CIA coups, proxy armies, partial and full-scale invasions, and the most egregious number of election interferences in the entire world, while threatening the entire species with nuclear brinkmanship on multiple fronts.
What the US and its proxies are doing in Yemen alone is orders of magnitude worse than anything Russia is doing to Ukraine. Or what the US is doing in Afghanistan. Or in Venezuela. Or in Syria. Hell, the Biden administration has already done worse than what Putin just did in recognizing Israel’s outright annexation of the Golan Heights.
To say nothing of the fact that the US thought so little of Ukrainian sovereignty in 2014 that it was perfectly comfortable staging a coup there with the support of actual neo-Nazi militias, who the liberal media are still running PR segments forto this day even after years of yelling about Donald Trump’s intimacy with the far right. The US thinks so highly of Ukraine’s sovereignty that it’s willing to ramp up cold war brinkmanship with a nuclear superpower to defend it, but not highly enough to refrain from backing literal Nazis to topple its government.
The US empire criticizing Russia for violating another nation’s sovereignty is like Jeffrey Dahmer criticizing someone else’s eating habits.
Since the end of the Cold War, it’s not even close: we have been a far, far greater menace to the world than Russia.
Russia has invaded Georgia, Ukraine and I guess technically Syria, but the Russians were invited by the Syrian President, Assad, to help crush the US-funded “moderate rebels” and regain control of the country. So, the Russians didn’t actually invade Syria—we did, though.
But it’s okay when we do it: we are entitled to invading whatever country we want because the whole world is property of the USA and after all, we’re just trying to Spread Democracy and Protect Human Rights.
The Russians have also been involved in the Central African Republic civil war for the past 2 years, but as with Syria, on the side of the government and working to restore order and control.
Russia does not invade far-flung countries. They invade countries in their immediate vicinity that they have a direct interest in.
If you choose a country in the world at random, the odds are that country has a much greater chance of being invaded by America than by Russia.
Okay, fine, fine. But, isn’t the point here that Russia is currently in the process of invading Ukraine? If invading other countries is bad even when the US does it, isn’t it bad that Russia is invading Ukraine?
In theory, yes. But there’s a good argument that Putin is justified in his actions here.
Let’s view this situation from his perspective:
- The Soviets promoted the idea of Ukrainian independence during the era of the USSR from 1922-1991.
- When the USSR collapsed in 1991, Ukraine gained its independence.
- But that was okay with Russia because for many years, it was run by pro-Russian leaders who were amenable to Putin.
- Until 2014 when a US-backed “color revolution” toppled the pro-Russian government in Ukraine and replaced it with a Western-aligned puppet regime.
- The new post-2014 Ukrainian government is hostile and antagonistic to Russia and is taking steps to erase all links between Russia and Ukraine, acting as if they are not the same peoples with a shared history, culture and ancestry.
- Now Ukraine’s government is making noise about joining NATO, a US-led Cold War relic alliance that exists solely to antagonize and squeeze Russia. Putin even claims Ukraine is seeking nuclear weapons.
- 70% of people in Ukraine identify as ethnically Russian.
How exactly is anything Putin’s doing here characterizable as “belligerent” or “unprovoked”? How is he the bad guy?
I’m sorry to say it but he has every right to be doing what he’s doing. We’re the ones being assholes here.
And it’s about high time we realized this, and that we realize just how much suffering and devastation our government has inflicted on the world in our name.
What Putin is doing right now is perfectly rational and even justified. He does not want Ukraine turned into a hostile Western puppet state.
In Putin’s view, Ukraine and Russia are one. It’s not even that he doesn’t want a neighboring state turned into a hostile enemy; he views Ukraine as a part of Russia itself. And he’s right about that, too.
In reality, we (NATO) are the ones who violated the TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️ of Ukraine in the first place by turning it into a puppet state. And because Putin views Russia and Ukraine as one, in this case we have violated Russia’s TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️.
And again, he’s right.
His “violations of Ukraine’s territorial integrity” are 100% in response to our violations of Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
We are the ones who meddled in his backyard, and now he’s trying to undo the damage we’ve caused.
It just goes to show the boundless audacity of the US/NATO to shriek about “violations” of TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️ and “norms” and “the rules-based international order.”
We literally overthrew the government of Ukraine and installed a pro-West puppet regime not even a decade ago. How was that not a violation of TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️ and The Rules-Based International Order™️?
Well because it benefitted the American ruling class, of course. People like Biden milked millions of dollars from corrupt Ukrainian businesses and politicians.
That’s why all this shrieking and hysteria over Putin’s actions is so ridiculous. America violates countries’ TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY™️ all the time, but when somebody else does it, it’s an international crisis and cannot be tolerated. It’s an outrageous outrage of the highest order.
America’s government has bullied the entire world for 30 straight years and then the second somebody else pushes back, America’s government tries to play the victim card— “This is a violation of international law!” “This is just like Hitler!” the US government sniffles.
The surest sign that there is no such thing as “international law” and a “rules-based international order” is that America is never accused of being in violation of it.
The people in power in the US—as opposed to the useful idiot “journalists” who do little more than parrot government talking points—know Putin is not The New Hitler, and that he does not have designs on taking over all of Europe.
But they are still losing their minds over Putin’s actions in Ukraine. Why?
Because they’re losing their global hegemony, and they know it. If Putin takes over Ukraine in spite of our hysterical objections, it means America is no longer the overwhelming apex predator of the world.
It means other countries are no longer afraid of us. It means we’re no longer running the show.
From the end of the Cold War until 2014, when Russia took back Crimea, no country in the world dared lift a finger without America’s approval.
What Russia is doing right now is showing the rest of the world that America is no longer calling the shots. That you can flout the Americans’ demands and get away with it. Putin has exposed America as a paper tiger; more bark than bite.
The sanctions that Biden has put on Russia will have little impact. We’ve had sanctions on Russia since 2014, and what have they accomplished?
The sanctions are a way to make it seem as if we’re “taking action” and “standing up to Putin,” but in reality, we are doing no such thing.
The US government can no longer impose its will on the world through mere words and sanctions alone. Russia has realized that we will not actually take any real, significant action against nations that run afoul of us, and thus Putin is currently in the process of exposing the lie at the heart of the post-Cold War world order.
And that’s the real fear the US government has here: that they will be exposed as all talk, no action–that the threat of violence which has kept the US in firm control of the world for 30 years is an empty threat. And that the US can no longer meddle anywhere it wants and get away with it.
The real threat Russia poses is to the US government’s credibility on the world stage.
If Russia is able to invade Ukraine and get away with it, it will deal a permanent and irrevocable blow to US power and influence in the world.
The US government doesn’t care about Ukraine. It cares about not being exposed and maintaining its dwindling credibility.
Putin, on the other hand, actually has a vested interest in Ukraine. It is his country’s neighbor, he views Ukrainians and Russians as one and the same people, and he is troubled by the fact that America has attempted to take over Ukraine and turn the country against Russia.
Yet somehow, Putin is the bad guy here and we’re the good guys?
If it seems as if I am more in favor of Russia than I am of my own country, that’s because in this situation, I am. But I would object to the statement that I am against my country.
I am not against America. I am against America’s government.
Loving one’s country does not require loving its government. I love America in spite of our malevolent government.
I am not under any obligation to defend the evil, greedy and destructive policies of this country’s government. Defending the government only enables the government to continue its evil ways.
This is what a government gets, and what it deserves, when it forsakes its own people.