Reprinted by permission from the author and from the original in Cyrano’s Journal March 1, 2015 (posted by Rowan Wolf)
(Photo by Duncan C / flickr.)
“How ’bout a shot of truth in that denial cocktail?”
– Jennifer Salaiz
The Western politicians numerous efforts to subjugate, vilify or de-humanize Russia and its president, as well as to make Russia to ignore its own national interests, have failed miserably. What is even worse, their inept political moves have caused a lot of grief to Ukraine in general. Western political clumsiness and incompetence is a painful burden to regular Ukrainians whose lives are gradually turning into a nightmare. The minimum wage in Ukraine has just hit another anti-record – it is $46 per month. “Even in such poor countries like Bangladesh, Ghana and Zambia, working people earn at least $4 more. The residents of Lesotho, Gambia and Chad are even better off – their minimum salary reaches $51,” says one of the Ukrainian publications, quoted by TASS. To put things in perspective – just at the beginning of 2014, pre-Maidan, the minimum wage was $440. The “European Dream,” they say? Be very careful what you wish for!
Being in denial is not pretty, especially in denial of fatal mistakes, and there are plenty of deniers among the western political elite. For example, it seems that former U.S. presidential and national security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski is besieged by paranoid nightmares. He is certain that Russia will invade Latvia and Estonia and consequently he is quick to “assume” a role of the savior for these two former Soviet states. He is convinced that it is necessary to place small (and not “provocative”) U.S. or NATO units on the border with Russia, the sooner the better. As to Ukraine, Mr. Brzezinski is of a strong opinion that the United States should provide arms to Ukraine. This suggestion overlooks the fact that Ukrainian government forces are responsible for unleashing the bloody mess in Donetsk that resulted in more than 5,400 deaths – with more than 3,000 civilians being killed.
As a client state, Ukraine has been under the umbrella of the U.S. all along. Despite the “guidance, the Kiev authorities haven’t fared too well. In fact, they are being beaten in quite humiliating fashion by the Novorossia army. They constantly beg their masters for additional military and financial supporty. Perhaps, as Putin said on February 17, “Ukrainian army is ashamed to lose to yesterday’s miners and tractor drivers.” To boost the Kiev authority’s drooping spirit, as of February 11, NATO foreign experts arrived to Ukraine in order to train the National Guard militants as well as the instructors of Ukrainian military training centers. The focus on the National Guard is astonishing, to say the least. After all, its members are the ones who sport the Nazi symbols; who burned and clubbed to death the Odessa innocents in the Trade Union House on May 2, 2014; who tortured anyone daring even to think about Novorossia or Russia. They are also the ones who almost universally follow the racist Nazi ideology. Did Uncle Sam fell in love with the swastika? One wonders.
Being heteronomous by their nature, British politicians are also too eager to prove their loyalty to Uncle Sam. On February 13 London sent 20 armored cars of Saxon to be used in Ukrainian assault on Novorossia. The irony is that these armored cars are obsolete, too heavy, abandoned by UK military itself – in short, useless. Moreover, the Kiev junta had to pay money for these behemoths used in 1980s. It seems that the West holds them for patsies after all. Nevertheless, the Ambassador of the United Kingdom in Kiev, Simon Smith, said that Britain intends to continue to support the Ukrainian army.
Another ex-politician is following the overly aggressive trend. Former Polish Defense Minister Romuald Sheremet’ev believes that Russia intends to attack Poland to revive the empire from Lisbon to Vladivostok. Never mind that he lies about the widely known Russian call to build – together with the European Union – a common economic space, from Lisbon to Vladivostok, and that the development of such a space was also welcomed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel. His reality is of a different kind, begot by fear and panic. The western politicians are of a strange mold – they tend to create the frightening environment to manipulate their respective citizens, but then, at the end, they believe their own lies thereby scaring themselves!
At the other side of the spectrum, there are some useful idiots such as Jen Psaki, U.S. State Department spokeswoman. Always upbeat and seemingly unperturbed, notwithstanding what kind of stupid rubbish jumps out of her mouth, Psaki is a darling of Russian journalists and public, for she provides ample opportunities to mock and marvel at inept U.S. politics in Ukraine in general and toward Russia in particular. Perhaps, she herself has no idea what kind of joy she brings to all the Russians politicians, media reps, and just regular folks. As Observer Newsnoted, since the Kiev coup last February, “Jen Psaki has catapulted to rock star fame, and so too in Russia was born a new term – ‘psaking,’ which in local political newspeak means to state confidently unchecked facts, mixed with an official propaganda line and one’s own ignorance.” Oh, Jen – given her upcoming re-assignment starting April 1, she will be greatly missed as a source of entertainment. And what a suitable day for her departure too – the April Fools Day, here we come!
Unfortunately, the opportunities for amusement in politics are rare — especially given the dismal background of the U.S.’ Ukrainian political puppets who literally threaten to burn down the Crimea, with all its inhabitants; or who promise to organize the victory parade on the Red Square, or, unashamedly, gloat over Donetsk region’s children living in basements and not attending schools. To assuage their own fears and insecurities, the biggest Russophobic politicians in Ukraine call for building a wall, a la Israel style, to physically separate their country from their eastern neighbor, as well as, perhaps, to present themselves before Ukrainian public as so-called defenders of the homeland. In December last year, Yatsenyuk said that Kiev will need 8 billion hryvnia (more than $520 million) and four years for the project, nicknamed “The Wall.” Who could possibly comprehend Ukrainian politicians? With their economy in the shambles, there is not enough money for their own citizens (e.g., IMF-imposed austerity led to the prices for gas increasing 280 percent), but they squander money for such useless projects as this one, or, even worse, for military assault on the civilians of Donetsk.
As to futile effort of U.S. puppets to subjugate eastern Ukraine, many in the West blame Russia for supplying weapons to the Novorossia army. First, there is no official proof of this claim. Even modern technology has failed to record any photos of regular Russian army in Ukraine (though fake ones have been produced). Second, Russia has no need to supply weapons. Who needs the official suppliers when there is a plenty of weaponry abandoned by Ukrainian army and National Guard? They were faithful suppliers of ammunition to Donetsk and Lugansk defenders all along. For example, just recently, the army of the Donetsk People’s Republic found in good condition and added to their own inventory: “28 tanks, 63 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 145 cars, 16 anti-aircraft ZSU-23-2, 13 artillery pieces and mortars.” According to the Deputy Army Commander, Edward Basurin, the Donetsk Army also received about 1,000 units of small arms, 39 warehouses with ammunition, and two train cars with weapons, all left by Ukrainian armed forces, reports TASS. On the top of that, there was another unexpected “gift” – a U.S. armored Humvee, in great condition. This armored car has a high penetrability, and is well-suited for off-road conditions and also for air mobile operations, as it is transportable and droppable by parachute. Thanks to Uncle Sam, it will be used to defend Novorossia henceforth.
Well, the good thing is that at least some of the Western politicians started to wake up from the anti-Russian miasma. Just last Friday, commenting on the report of the House of Lords, British Lord Peter Truscott said, “Russia’s position has been completely ignored, there was no mutual communication [with Russia], and that was a mistake.” According to published report, EU leaders expressed “catastrophic misunderstanding” of the situation, which was the cause of the Ukrainian crisis. At this point, however, British Lords have no sway over western politics, and business as usual is the main agenda of the day as far as Russophobia is concerned. In brief, under the empty slogans of democracy and freedom, the West has effaced the reality on the ground and subrogated its own, false and murderous, version of it. However, the issue here is not democracy or freedom as the West claims, but the question of immorality. To use Paulo Freire words, “human interests are abandoned whenever they threaten the values of the market” and go against the interests of western elite, whether geopolitical or financial.“Allowing concrete situations of misery to persist is immoral.” And what has transpired in Ukraine since the February 2014 coup – instigated, supported and maintained by the West and spearheaded by the U.S. – is a sheer misery and degradation of human beings. That is, immoral!
Added to original:
From NYT Europe–February 12, 2015. “UKRAINE’S LATEST PEACE PLAN INSPIRES HOPE AND DOUBTS“
Alevtina Rea is freelance analyst and writer; for 7 years (2005 – 2012), she worked as an assistant editor with CounterPunch. Ms. Rea is a contributing author to CounterPunch, Cyrano’s Journal Today, Uncommon Thought Journal, and the International Journal of Baudrillard Studies. She can be reached at email@example.com.