[WSMDiscuss] Putin's War on Ukraine and the Bizarre Kaleidoscopic Coalition Advocating Putin's Cause

Sukla Sen sukla.sen at gmail.com
Wed Oct 5 14:44:29 CET 2022


In case you have issues with the factuality of any "facts" cited or the
validity of any arguments put forward, those can be meaningfully
discussed--(only) if offered.

Ad hominem attacks, on the other, point to poverty of argument.


On Wed, Oct 5, 2022, 19:43 ovidiu.tichindeleanu at yahoo.com <
ovidiu.tichindeleanu at yahoo.com> wrote:

> dear Sukla,
> As far as I got into them, the materials you've sent are very US-centric
> and they don't seem to care as much about the region itself, and neither
> about the people or about peace, as about the righteousness of the side
> they endorse. Instead of opening for a democratic debate, they are rather
> building a partisan case meant to spread pre-emptive accusations against a
> vast array of very different people seen by their authors as being on the
> "other side". By endorsing them, the same narrow focus and the same
> aggressive gesture are reproduced here in this forum.
> I would've hoped the forum would be better than that.
> On Tuesday, October 4, 2022 at 05:46:50 AM GMT+2, Sukla Sen via
> WSM-Discuss <wsm-discuss at lists.openspaceforum.net> wrote:
> <<In 1942, answering a pacifist opponent of British involvement in the
> Second World War, George Orwell replied that “pacifism is objectively
> pro-fascist.” There have of course been many times in human history when
> opposition to war has been morally justified, intellectually coherent, and,
> in the end, vindicated. But the war to defeat fascism during the middle
> part of the past century was simply not one of them. “This is elementary
> common sense,” Orwell wrote at the time. “If you hamper the war effort of
> one side you automatically help that of the other.”
> Eight decades later, as a fascistic Russian regime wages war against
> Ukraine, a motley collection of voices from across the political spectrum
> has called upon the United States and its allies to adopt neutrality as
> their position. Ranging from anti-imperialists on the left to isolationists
> on the right and more respectable “realists” in between, these critics are
> not pacifists in the strict sense of the term. Few if any oppose the use of
> force as a matter of principle. But nor are they neutral. It is not
> sufficient, they say, for the West to cut off its supply of defensive
> weaponry to Ukraine. It must also atone for “provoking” Russia to attack
> its smaller, peaceful, democratic neighbor, and work at finding a
> resolution that satisfies what Moscow calls its “legitimate security
> interests.” In this, today’s anti-war caucus is objectively pro-fascist.
> To appreciate the bizarrely kaleidoscopic nature of this caucus, consider
> the career of a catchphrase. “Is Washington Fighting Russia Down to the
> Last Ukrainian?” asked the headline of a column self-published in March by
> Ron Paul, the former Republican congressman and presidential candidate. It
> was a strange question for Paul to be posing just three weeks into
> President Vladimir Putin’s unjustifiable and unforgivable invasion,
> especially considering the extraordinary lengths to which the Biden
> administration had gone to avoid “fighting Russia.”
> Even stranger than Paul’s assertion that the U.S. was goading Ukrainians
> into sacrificing themselves on the altar of its Russophobic bloodlust,
> though, has been the proliferation of his specious talking point across the
> ideological spectrum.
> ...
> “A great deal is being said about the United States’ intention to fight
> against Russia ‘to the last Ukrainian’—they say it there and they say it
> here,” the Russian president mused the following week, prefacing his
> mention of the gibe with his own version of that Trumpian rhetorical
> flourish, “A lot of people are saying.” That same month, an American
> Conservative article by Doug Bandow of the libertarian Cato Institute was
> headlined “Washington Will Fight Russia to the Last Ukrainian,” denying
> Ukrainians any agency in their own struggle by answering the question Paul
> had rhetorically asked.
> Soon after, the dean of realist international-relations theorists, the
> University of Chicago scholar  John Mearsheimer, used the line as though
> he’d just thought of it. By then, the argument that America was “fighting
> Russia to the last Ukrainian” had ping-ponged between both ends of the
> ideological spectrum an astonishing number of times. The point for the
> anti-imperialist left and the isolationist right, as well as the realist
> fellow travelers hitched to each side, was that blame for the conflict lies
> mainly with the U.S., which is using Ukraine as a proxy for its nefarious
> interventionism in Moscow’s backyard.
>  the fringe left would blame America—which it views as the source of all
> capitalist exploitation, military aggression, and imperialist evil in the
> world—for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is predictable. It blames America
> for everything. When, two days after the Russian invasion began on February
> 24, the Democratic Socialists of America called upon “the US to withdraw
> from NATO and to end the imperialist expansionism that set the stage for
> this conflict,” mainstream Democrats condemned the statement. More
> significant has been the position taken by mainstream realists, who
> similarly fault the West for somehow “provoking” Russia into waging war on
> its neighbor. These politically disparate forces share more than a talking
> point. They also have a worldview in common.
> ...
> Many commentators have likened Volodymyr Zelensky to Winston Churchill for
> his charismatic resistance to foreign invaders and his ability to raise the
> morale of his people. In light of this popular association, the headline
> that the editors of Compact devised for Ungar-Sargon’s apologia—“Zelensky’s
> War”—is nauseating, blaming the victim while seeming to evoke the title of
> a notorious book by the Holocaust-denying historian David Irving,
> Churchill’s War.
> Condemning the U.S. and its allies for the unfolding tragedy in Ukraine
> requires one to ignore or downplay a great deal of Russian misbehavior.
> This is a characteristic that unites left-wing anti-imperialists,
> right-wing isolationists, and the ostensibly more respectable “realists.”
> "Russian President Vladimir Putin, the argument goes, annexed Crimea out
> of a long-standing desire to resuscitate the Soviet Empire, and he may
> eventually go after the rest of Ukraine as well as other countries in
> Eastern Europe,” Mearsheimer wrote in a 2014 essay titled “Why the Ukraine
> Crisis Is the West’s Fault.” “But this account is wrong.” Eight years on,
> as Russian forces marched toward Kyiv and Putin issued vague threats of
> nuclear escalation, Mearsheimer made no acknowledgment of how very wrong
> his own earlier, sanguine assessment of Putin’s intentions had been.
> “We invented this story that Putin is highly aggressive and he’s
> principally responsible for this crisis in Ukraine,” he told The New Yorker
> a week into the invasion. Putin’s apparent goal of overthrowing Zelensky
> and installing a puppet regime would not be an example of “imperialism,”
> Mearsheimer argued, and was meaningfully different from “conquering and
> holding onto Kyiv.” All of this linguistic legerdemain would surely come as
> news to the Czechs, Poles, Slovaks, and other peoples of the region who
> once suffered under the Russian imperial yoke.
> ...
> Russia’s war against Ukraine has exposed the incompetence of the Russian
> military and the hubris of President Putin. It has also revealed the
> bravery and resilience of the Ukrainian people, who, contrary to Ron Paul’s
> ambulatory talking point, had no need of any American to prod or gull them
> into defending their homeland. Here in the U.S., the war has also exposed
> the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of an ideologically diverse set of
> foreign-policy commentators: the “anti-imperialists” who routinely justify
> blatant acts of imperial conquest, and the “realists” who make arguments
> unmoored from reality.
> (Excepted from: <
> https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2022/09/anti-war-camp-intellectually-bankrupt/671576/
> >.)
> In this context, may also look up:
> I/VII <
> https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10158862648811242&id=636661241
> >.
> II. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/pqfuTTDztWk/m/uARMpjS9FgAJ>.
> III. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/rvJnYeSGK50/m/Sg6Bu6c-AwAJ
> >.
> IV. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/gs6YdxWFjDM/m/oildUPSbAAAJ>.
> V. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/ZKzrpDIoDTM/m/8_D-_M_uAAAJ>.
> VI. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/-6GnujgwJdU/m/btLVgDIaAwAJ>.
> VII. <https://groups.google.com/g/greenyouth/c/sGTIp5xMyXE/m/PI-pMrVEAgAJ
> >.
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