Sorting Out Ukraine Conflict’s History

Exclusive: The U.S. mainstream media’s narrative of the Ukraine crisis – hailing the 2014 Maidan uprising and blaming the ensuing conflict on Russia – is facing challenge in some early historical accounts, writes James W. Carden.

By James W. Carden

While the good folks of the Washington establishment have been keeping themselves busy trying to invent new ways to cripple and delegitimize the presidency of Donald J. Trump, the war in Ukraine, now entering its fourth year, has, of late, gone largely unremarked upon.

President Barack Obama talks with President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker following a bilateral meeting in the Oval Office, Sept. 18, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Yet it continues. A report by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights published on June 13 finds that over the past three months there have been ceasefire violations committed by both parties to the conflict. According to the report, the “routine use of small arms and light and heavy weapons in the conflict zone” has resulted in “damage to critical infrastructure, including schools, hospitals and water facilities.” To date, over 10,000 people, including roughly 3,000 civilians, have been killed since the conflict began in 2014.

This past February marked the three-year anniversary of Euro-Maidan uprising, which saw Ukraine’s democratically elected President Viktor Yanukovych overthrown and replaced by a pro-Western coalition government made up of his political opponents.

As the drama played out, a small but influential coterie of Western journalists, who had previously shown themselves susceptible to the charms of regime-change wars, by and large shaped what became the mainstream narrative of the Ukraine crisis.

The narrative boils down to this: had it not been for the actions of Vladimir Putin following the glories of the Euro-Maidan protests, Ukraine would have, peacefully and in due course, joined the European family of nations. But Putin, so the story goes, was infuriated that Ukraine rejected his vision of a neo-Soviet Eurasian Economic Union, and took revenge by annexing Crimea. Having stolen Crimea, Putin then turned his sights on the Russophone eastern part of Ukraine where forces under his control have been waging “hybrid war” ever since.

It is often said, that journalism – especially the version coming from The New York Times, The Washington Post and other mainstream newspapers – serves as the “first draft” of history. And, if that is true, the mainstream narrative of Ukraine’s post-Maidan innocence and Russian perfidy sums up the “first draft” in a nutshell. Since then, that first draft has evolved into a second draft published by big-name authors, such as Imperial Gamble by Marvin Kalb, a former Moscow bureau chief for NBC News. Ambitious in scope, Kalb’s book reflects the widely held, but erroneous, view that Putin’s Russia was the principal driver of the crisis and subsequent war.

A Mixed Bag 

To his credit, every now and then Kalb breaks free from the Official Washington narrative. Describing the neo-fascist flavor of the Maidan protests, Kalb writes that a number of far-right groups who were increasingly at the center of the action “would have made the Nazi-era Gestapo look like a happy band of bigots and bandits.”

Nazi symbols on helmets worn by members of Ukraine’s Azov battalion. (As filmed by a Norwegian film crew and shown on German TV)

Kalb, unlike many of his peers in the think tank community (Kalb is a nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution) also notes with distaste that a leader of the neo-Nazi Azov battalion was named chief of police in post-Maidan Kiev. “Instead of reining in far-right militias,” writes Kalb, Kiev “has actually been providing them with tanks and armored personnel carriers.”

Kalb is equally clear-eyed about the tactics that Ukraine’s new leaders employed to garner Western aid. “A number of unethical Ukrainian politicians” seem to have found the magic formula, which, according to Kalb, is this: “bedazzle the West into believing that Ukraine is a vital strategic asset in a continuing East-West struggle between democracy and autocracy, between freedom and oppression…”

Toward the end of Imperial Gamble, Kalb begins to sounds a lot like a foreign policy realist, writing that because Putin holds all the cards in the Ukraine crisis, the current president of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, “will have to accept the best deal he can get.” Indeed, Kalb flirts with outright apostasy when he concludes that “any real solution to the current crisis must first satisfy the interests of Russia and then those of Ukraine.”

Yet for all of its strengths, Kalb’s account is marred by problems both large and small. First, there are the factual errors. Describing the aftermath of Yanukovych’s decision not to sign the European Union Association Agreement (AA) in November 2013, Kalb writes that “hundreds of thousands of disenchanted Ukrainians rushed to the streets” and “days later” Yanukovych fled.

In fact, most accounts put the initial number of Maidan protesters at around a 2,000 or so, while Yanukovych did not flee “days later” – he fled three months later on Feb. 22, 2014, after weeks of increasingly violent riots, which led to the deaths of more than a dozen police and scores of protesters.

Exaggerated Claims

Kalb writes that on Feb. 23, “Crimea was about to change ownership. Eastern Ukraine was about to descend into civil war.” Yet the civil war did not begin until April 6. After Crimea held a referendum to secede from Ukraine and join Russia in March 2014, Kalb writes that the anti-Maidan rallies that took place in Donetsk, Kharkiv, Luhansk, Maiupol and Odessa were “instigated by Moscow and organized by Russian special forces in the region” – a claim he makes repeatedly throughout the book.

Screen shot of the fatal fire in Odessa, Ukraine, that was set by right-wing Ukrainian nationalists killing dozens of ethnic Russians on May 2, 2014. (From RT video)

Yet as the University of Ottawa’s Paul Robinson points out, “the idea that Russian special forces were active as far as Kharkiv and Odessa is quite unsubstantiated.”

Kalb often asserts things for which there is precious little evidence. Readers are informed that “historians in Putin’s Russia no longer adhered to the standards of objective scholarship.” Of Putin’s allegedly longstanding plan to retake Crimea, Kalb writes, “Putin circled Crimea on an imaginary map. Here Russia would act.”

Kalb writes that “Putin lives in a strange corner of the Kremlin where fear and hubris coexist in an awkward embrace” and where, presumably, he hatches his plans for world domination. And he is a crusher of dissent. Kalb repeats the usual litany of abuses attributed to Putin: “He has tried to freeze political debate,” “he approves the assassination of political critics,” “he has been, without a doubt, the strongest Russian autocrat since Stalin, yet oddly, the most vulnerable.”

Nor is that all. Putin, strong and vulnerable, is also “like a spoiled child” who “does not like being ignored or scolded.” Yet delivering speeches in the Kremlin “does wonders for his ego.” Indeed, Putin cannot “imagine life without an autocratic grip on political power.”

Yet by the end of Imperial Gamble, Kalb suddenly strikes a note of caution, telling readers that “we should stop personalizing East-West differences, laying all our problems on Putin’s shoulders.” While true, this would’ve been a bit more convincing if the author hadn’t spent the previous 100 pages doing just that.

A Glaring Flaw

Yet the book’s most glaring flaw is its premise: that Russia is solely to blame for the crisis. As Rajan Menon and Eugene Rumer point out in Conflict in Ukraine, the idea that Russia caused the crisis “exemplifies the single factor fallacy.” Scrupulously even-handed, Menon and Rumer depart from Kalb’s analysis by identifying causes of the crisis other than those originating out of Moscow.

Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland, who pushed for the Ukraine coup and helped pick the post-coup leaders.

Moreover, whereas Kalb’s narrative is marred by errors and an over-reliance on hyperbole (calling post-coup Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk an “international superstar”) and cliché (on Feb. 22 “the earth shook”), Conflict in Ukraine is a crisply written overview of the crisis which serves as a successful rebuttal to the entrenched idea that the crisis was all Putin’s doing.

Another strength of Menon and Rumer’s offering is that it puts the crisis into the larger context of East-West relations. In addition to being a manifestation of the centuries-long divide within Ukraine, the crisis is also “a symptom of an even larger problem for Europe.” The inability of Western leaders to find a satisfactory answer to the problem of Russia’s place in Europe has been exacerbated by two separate, but related, issues.

The first has to do with NATO expansion. The original iteration of NATO was driven by a desire, in the words of NATO’s first Secretary-General, Lord Ismay, to “keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.” Menon and Rumer note that once the Cold War ended, NATO was robbed of its raison d’être and, in search of one, decided to expand both its membership and its writ. And so, between 1999 and 2009, NATO added 12 new members, expanding the alliance to Russia’s western border.

According to Menon and Rumer, the West’s decision to expand was met with “perplexity and resentment” in Russia. NATO’s expansion to Russia’s doorstep is, according to the University of Chicago’s John J. Mearsheimer, “the taproot of the current crisis.”

And indeed, the failure to build a sustainable post-Cold War security architecture lies at the heart of the crisis. Menon and Rumer note, “what was done for Germany in the 1950s was not done for Russia in the 1990s.” Still worse, to do so never even seemed to cross the minds of Western policymakers: NATO membership for Russia was “never seriously considered, and if it came up, it was only as a far-fetched, theoretical possibility.”

Downturn in Relations

If NATO expansion played a central role in the downturn in relations between Russia and the West, the role played by the European Union’s expansionist agenda has been no less significant. Menon and Rumer are particularly critical of the E.U.’s Eastern Partnership initiative (EaP), which, staring in 2009, sought to bring six former Soviet republics into the E.U.’s orbit. And it was Ukraine, which was, as the neocon functionary Carl Gershman once put it “the biggest prize.”

Carl Gershman, president of the National Endowment for Democracy.

Menon and Rumer demonstrate that the EaP was deeply flawed from the start. Given Ukraine’s importance to Russia, the idea that any Russian leader, no less Vladimir Putin, would countenance Ukraine’s absorption into the E.U. strikes the authors as fanciful.

The E.U.’s myopic focus on expansion caused its leadership to fail to see what should have been perfectly clear all along: that Moscow did not view E.U. membership for Ukraine as benign. It saw a “link” between E.U. membership and NATO membership. And in fact, there is a link: the Association Agreement’s acquis communautaire has specific foreign policy and security protocols embedded within it. Simply put: E.U. membership sets the stage for NATO membership.

Nevertheless, the E.U. continued down its perilous course, giving, according to Menon and Rumer, “little thought, if any at all, to how it would deal with the eventuality of Russian resistance.” Indeed, this apparent failure is nothing less than a manifestation of what the historian Richard Sakwa has described as the E.U.’s tendency toward “geopolitical nihilism.”

In Frontline Ukraine: Crisis in the Borderlands, a uniformly excellent treatment of the crisis and its attendant causes, Sakwa decries what he views as a reckless rush to isolate Russia from the rest of Europe. Sakwa’s bitingly describes the crisis as “a festival of irresponsibility.”

Two Views of Ukraine

Sakwa’s account is straightforward. According to Sakwa there are two aspects of the Ukraine crisis: internal and international. The internal crisis is marked by a division between those who see Ukraine as a “monolingual, culturally autonomous” state that should align itself with Europe and NATO, and those, primarily in the east, who believe the state should embrace ethnic and linguistic pluralism. For them, Ukraine is “an assemblage of different traditions” where Russian is recognized as an official language and economic and security ties with Russia are maintained.

Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses a crowd on May 9, 2014, celebrating the 69th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany and the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Crimean port city of Sevastopol from the Nazis. (Russian government photo)

According to Sakwa, the international aspect of the crisis stems from the unwelcome transformation of the E.U. from an institution which, in its early years “sought to transcend the logic of conflict” to one which is now functions as the “civilian wing” of NATO. Like Rumer and Menon, Sakwa decries the failure of Western policymakers to “establish a genuinely inclusive and equal security system” in the post-Cold War era.

While Sakwa places the bulk of the blame for the crisis on the hubris of the E.U., in Ukraine: Zbig’s Grand Chessboard and How the West Was Checkmated, Natylie Baldwin and Kermit Heartsong cast a gimlet eye on the role the U.S. has played in the crisis. Heartsong and Baldwin demonstrate that the project to wrest Ukraine out of Russia’s orbit owes a great deal to the ideas of the late Zbigniew Brzezinski the neoconservative wing of the U.S. foreign policy establishment.

Baldwin and Heartsong’s denunciation of U.S. foreign policy also serves as a primer on the roots of the conflict, which includes a detailed account of how the “color revolutions” of 2002-2009 served as a trial run for the events that later swept the Maidan. As the authors note, what was true for the first “color revolutions,” holds for the Maidan today: despite lofty expectations, the revolutions “brought social, political, and economic suffering” in their wake.

The newest addition to the literature comes courtesy of the Dutch journalist Chris Kaspar de Ploeg, who refuses to go along with the mainstream Western narrative that has studiously ignored the ultra-nationalist, neo-fascist aspects of post-Maidan Ukraine. De Ploeg’s Ukraine in the Crossfire is a deeply researched account that lets no one in this sordid drama off the hook. Hunter Biden’s shady business dealings, Natalie Jaresko’s greed, Victoria Nuland’s imperial pretensions, and Petro Poroshenko’s gross criminality are each given their due.

What makes De Ploeg’s account particularly valuable is his detailed examination of the role of the far right in perpetuating not only the violence which racked the Maidan but in then launching a brutal war (the so-called “anti-terrorist operation”) against the Russian-backed rebels and the civilian Russophone population of eastern and southern Ukraine. The atrocities carried out by neo-Nazi militias like Right Sector and the Azov battalion are glossed over in the Western press almost as a matter of course, but, as De Ploeg shows, ignoring their influence and reach makes a rational understanding of the conflict impossible.

Edmund Wilson once wrote that “it is all too easy to idealize a social upheaval which takes place in some other country than one’s own.” And this is an illusion that has plagued the mainstream narrative regarding the Ukrainian revolution from the start. Yet with the appearance of several of these titles, we can begin to discern a shift away from the triumphalist one-note narrative of the Ukraine crisis toward one which recognizes the complex reality of a crisis that is now in its fourth year.

James W. Carden served as an adviser on Russia policy at the US State Department. Currently a contributing writer at The Nation magazine, his work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Quartz, The American Conservative and The National Interest. He has reported from both rebel- and government-held eastern Ukraine.

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122 comments for “Sorting Out Ukraine Conflict’s History

  1. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 9:45 am

    “Simplicity is the key to brilliance.” Bruce Lee

    They are complex, you are simple. You are small, they are big. They get weak as you get strong.

    “Simplify Simplify Simplify” Bumper sticker at the C-130 airbase. Start flying Tigers and run shine for Hope in old cargo planes. Air Force is upgrading to jets. Fly low and slow to avoid radars. Flood the place with shine and new ops.

    • Sam F
      June 15, 2017 at 11:54 am

      The article well shows that western subversion of faction-riven Ukraine was led by the self-serving groupthink of tyrants in the military/intel agencies, administration, Congress, and mass media, inventing foreign monsters to pose falsely as protectors, and to accuse their moral superiors of disloyalty, as Aristotle warned. They have none of the humanity or patriotism that they claim. This domestic power grab of tyrants is the greatest danger to democracy. This is why the nation’s founders opposed a standing military, and they were right.

      Apart from treaties, the US would have no constitutional power to wage foreign wars, just to repel invasions and suppress insurrections, and that is the way it should be. Treaties become part of the Supreme Law of the land, and must be rigorously restricted to defense. NATO has become a primary means for warmongering demagogues to subvert the Constitution, the sole reason that they revive Russophobia.

      These tyrants have since WWII denied the United States the honor of rescuing the poorest half of the world from ignorance, poverty, malnutrition, and disease, and instead have murdered ten million struggling innocents, and have ignored vastly greater unnecessary deaths from disease and starvation. US foreign aid has been only about one meal annually to the poorest of the world, the lowest foreign aid per GNP of any developed nation.

      Yet a majority in the US consider humanitarian aid of roughly 18 percent of the federal budget to be reasonable, 25 times the present amount. This $600 billion annually, about $36 trillion since WWII or $12,000 per capita for the poorest half of the world ($48,000 per family of four), would have built their homes, roads, schools, and hospitals, and other developed nations, would have eliminated poverty and suffering from the planet. This would have been a real “American Century” and the US would have no security problems today.

      If the bloated US military and intelligence budgets are now reduced by halting our worldwide aggression and providing only for defense, this humanitarian aid can be provided without additional taxes. Simply raising tax rates to their pre-1970 levels would permit a lesser reduction of military budget. Americans can certainly be very comfortable with much larger foreign aid programs, as well as very safe.

      Our miserly foreign aid budgets prove that our elected “representatives” and mass media represent only the selfish rich and their opportunist followers. Of the 1973-2010 diplomatic cables on Wilileaks.com: cables on disease control numbered only 4% of those on drug control, cables on land reform (giving farmland to poor farmers) were only 8% of those opposing nationalization (taking industries for public benefit), and cables on food aid were only 34% of those on military aid.

      Your elected officials do not represent you, do not care about you, and do not care in the least for humanity in general. They are selfish scoundrels and thieves who should be turned out of office and prosecuted for corruption.

      • mike k
        June 15, 2017 at 1:24 pm

        Thanks Sam. Your voice is loud and clear – speaking truth.

      • Dave P.
        June 15, 2017 at 1:55 pm

        Sam, thanks for excellent analysis.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 3:53 pm

        Sam F good comment. I would like to add that with the mightiest military ever known to mankind it would be quite easy to roll out a humanitarian project, such as you described. Instead we have only used our massive military to invade, and kill those we should have been helping out. With as strong of a military that the U.S. has, the leverage of power to iron out differences could be so overwhelming that not a shot would need to be fired in order to bring people to the table to work on well needed life saving projects, but there go I.

        • Sam F
          June 15, 2017 at 5:06 pm

          Exactly; with both benevolence and power, and a willingness to hear all sides and to enable all needs to be met, there are few international problems that cannot be strongly ameliorated.

          Even where tragedy is difficult to avoid, such as tribal genocides where ancient hatreds and beliefs do not soon yield to negotiation, we can be the peacemakers where military domination only makes things worse. In situations of factional strife as in Ukraine, external powers can through the UN work for peace and elimination of want, while denying arms or encouragement to potential proxy forces.

          • Joe Tedesky
            June 16, 2017 at 1:09 am

            I might sight as a model for what you described above the Chinese OBOR Project.

          • Sam F
            June 16, 2017 at 8:05 am

            Yes, developing transport corridors can bring relief to isolated interior populations. As you suggested, about 80 percent of the US military can be re-purposed to build the infrastructure and staff nascent institutions to administer aid efficiently. Re-purposing puts the military infrastructure and command to proper uses without denying them jobs, and allows the fearful and the hostile to see that great military capability remains if needed. It also provides young minds the opportunity to truly defend and work for what they believe in, a new Peace Corps.

    • Reality Check
      June 16, 2017 at 11:01 pm

      Well written and accurate analysis, congratulations Mr. Carden. I’ve just finished reading Josh Cohen’s sophomric appeal in the WaPo for Pooshenko to ‘rein in the ultra-nationalists, it’s not too late’. Cohen displays a naivite born of conscious ignorance. You display an acute awareness to detail. That one writes for the WaPo, pretty much sums up the condition of the times.

    • Cassandra
      June 17, 2017 at 1:21 am

      Why repeat “Simplify” three times?

  2. cmack
    June 15, 2017 at 10:04 am

    nytimes first draft……….

    equals

    “History is a pack of lies about events that never happened told by people who weren’t there.” santanaya

  3. Bob Van Noy
    June 15, 2017 at 10:12 am

    Thank you James W. Carden for this summary. After watching Oliver Stone’s third episode of his President Putin interview, I was reminded of a long article that Mae Brussels did years ago and I will link it for those interested in reading it. Clearly, for me much of this goes back to Operation Paperclip and the Dulles Brothers. Mae’s article can provide context.

    http://www.maebrussell.com/Mae%20Brussell%20Articles/Nazi%20Connection%20to%20JFK%20Assass.html

    • F. G. Sanford
      June 15, 2017 at 1:29 pm

      Bob – I put in a comment to plug your link to the Mae Brussel article. It’s “awaiting moderation”. I must be back on the “bad boy list”. I would most strongly recommend reading Mae’s summation – it’s not 100% verifiable, but the main thrust of her treatise is historically accurate.

      • Dave P.
        June 15, 2017 at 1:59 pm

        F.G., I have the same situation. For the last five or six days, most of my comments are tagged “awaiting moderation”. Is it censorship or something else, technical – I have no clue.

      • Bob Van Noy
        June 15, 2017 at 2:37 pm

        Thank you F.G., I’ll look forward to your response…

      • Bill Bodden
        June 15, 2017 at 3:16 pm

        moderation

        The problem is most likely technical. I rarely get wait messages. When I do they don’t seem to make much sense when my comments are not out of the ordinary.

        • Kiza
          June 16, 2017 at 4:07 pm

          I get it every time I include a link and sometimes (but not often) when I put some critical words.

  4. mike k
    June 15, 2017 at 10:16 am

    The one simple irrefutable key to understanding Ukraine is the drive of the American Empire for world domination. All the twists and turns of that affair are only minor themes in that grand (soap) opera. Which of course threatens to end all human life on Earth.

    • June 15, 2017 at 12:45 pm

      I’m not so sure about that. If the U.S. were, indeed, interested in world domination I think the policies would be more realistic. I think the world domination idea enlists many of the policy makers to the “cause” because they seek power and glory. However, the reality is that the U.S. asserts power PRIMARILY for one reason–feeding the profits of military contractors. I realized all this when analyzing the major wars we’ve engaged in. The strategy and tactics we saw in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq make no sense militarily or politically and appear to be designed specifically to fail–but you have to look at the details to grasp this as well as be someone, like me, who understands how the federal government actually operates meaing that there are perverse incentives and massive corruption.

      • mike k
        June 15, 2017 at 1:38 pm

        The insatiable greed for power knows no limits. More is never enough. A billion is only a road to a trillion, and beyond. To understand hubris is to know insanity. Trying to contain this monster within some traditional limits is useless. This is not a rational game; this is out of control power addiction. At the pinnacle of the power pyramid stands an archtypal figure who will never be satisfied until he owns every last cent, and inch of territory, and human mind and body forever. Is this a mad impossible dream? Of course, but it has been birthed by the long and torturous milleniums of human culture, and it will exact it’s due from all of us, no matter if it has to destroy everything in the process.

      • backwardsevolution
        June 15, 2017 at 2:36 pm

        Chris – “The strategy and tactics we saw in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq make no sense militarily or politically and appear to be designed specifically to fail…”

        A perpetual war machine, not so much interested in starting a big forest fire or winning, but very much interested in keeping smaller fires going day and night and milking them for all they can get. The only time they get really angry is when there is a threat to the milking machine. Lots of loans, arms sales, ability for U.S. corporations to buy foreign assets on the cheap.

        “If the U.S. were, indeed, interested in world domination I think the policies would be more realistic.”

        Chris, doesn’t the U.S. have dominance over countries already (South America, for example) without ever physically putting their foot in the door? They only put their foot in the door (wars) when they absolutely have to; the rest of the time they just dominate smaller countries with sanctions, NGO’s, the IMF, food aid, covert activities, bringing countries to their knees if they don’t play along? Isn’t that already world domination?

        What do you think?

        • Skip Scott
          June 16, 2017 at 8:28 am

          I would think the simple fact that the US maintains approximately 800 military bases in 160 countries around the world tells us they seek world domination at the behest of their corporate overlords.

    • Sam F
      June 15, 2017 at 1:06 pm

      I would suggest that you are both right. The actual interests behind US wars are MIC/Israel/WallSt; others are attracted to the notion of national power as their own power, and to the falsely-proferred rationales of democracy promotion and security. But the many wars that topple or oppress socialist regimes serve that goal of US oligarchy, and the Mideast wars serve the zionist goal of creating chaos among potential opponents.

      • backwardsevolution
        June 15, 2017 at 2:15 pm

        Sam F – re your mention of Wall Street, Paul Craig Roberts said:

        “There is no sign that American leadership in any area is actually capable of thought. Consider Wall Street and corporate leadership. To boost share prices Wall Street forced all corporations to desert their home country and move the production of goods and services sold to Americans offshore to where labor and regulatory costs were lower. The lower costs raised profits and share prices. Wall Street threatened resistant corporations with takeovers of the companies if they refused to move abroad in order to increase their profits.”

        Debt is money, and Wall Street loves perpetual war and NATO expansion because they make a ton of money off of this. After countries have been leveled and taught a good lesson, in steps Wall Street to loan the newly-appointed puppet government some money. And when people lose their jobs to offshoring, in step Wall Street banks to provide the EBT cards. All upside for them!

        • Sam F
          June 15, 2017 at 9:00 pm

          Yes, the “groupthink” of US leadership involves little thought, but rather a process of social pressure and negotiation that arrives carelessly at policies serving primitive factional interests via bribery.

          Whereas we could have a policymaking thought process far better than the “debates” of Congress, a textual public debate process protecting, challenging, and examining all points of view, producing commented debate summaries available to the public with mini-courses, in which individuals would truly integrate into a “universal mind of humanity” in serving the interests of all humanity.

  5. Joe Tedesky
    June 15, 2017 at 10:17 am

    The book I’m most curious to how it will be written, is the history book that my grandchildren will learn from. So far I’m unhappy to say, my one grandchild who goes to the number one school in our state, is teaching my grandchild’s grade of how Putin is an aggressive and dangerous man. I’ve tried to set my grandchild straight, but it’s hard for the youngster to accept since grandpap is going against the grain of what my grandchild has been taught. It’s a shame since this grandchild wants grandma to take him to Washington DC for his sixteenth birthday.

    I also think many books describing the fate of Ukraine will be written in such a way as to lure us Debbie downers into believing what these authors are selling, or these books are written as to rival the truth of what we know as being the truth. In other words, the more nonsense put out there the more nonsense to debate over. Over the last five hundred years Ukraine has had many borders, and because of this fluidity what appears on a map as being one, is anything but one. Guns and bombs will never settle this dispute, but negotiations with all parties present is in my mind worth a try.

    • Realist
      June 15, 2017 at 10:51 am

      Encourage your grandkids to read Orwell’s “1984” and point up how fluid history was represented by Oceania’s government in that work. Make note that the protagonist Winston Smith in fact made his living by daily revising the history books and sending any inconvenient fact “down the memory hole” under the guiding principle that ““He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.” Warn them to note any parallels between that cautionary tale and present day America, no matter which party is in power, and that ultimately they had better learn the facts of anything for themselves since there’s always someone around with reasons to tell them lies… except you.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 11:04 am

        Excellent advice. Thanks Realist I will do that. Joe

        • backwardsevolution
          June 15, 2017 at 2:41 pm

          Joe Tedesky – history: one side wants something for nothing. They want to take something and not pay for it.

        • Skip Scott
          June 16, 2017 at 8:32 am

          Joe-

          Of all the old “hippie” buttons one of the ones I loved the most was “Question Authority”. I think that is one of the most important things to teach your grandkids.

    • Bill Bodden
      June 15, 2017 at 1:55 pm

      The book I’m most curious to how it will be written, is the history book that my grandchildren will learn from.

      The book, or books, will probably be updated versions of the books and stories James Loewen criticized in “Lies My Teacher Told Me,” “Lies Across America,” and other books.

      Joe: You might also set up a This-Day-In-History correspondence with notes to your grandson to let him know of times when the people were lied to and the consequences as well as the isolated people with the courage to defy the ruling mob. The Tonkin Gulf incident when Senators Wayne Morse (D-OR) and Ernest Gruening (D-AK).were the two who got it right on the resolution vote. Then there is the history of how LBJ and others betrayed the crew of the USS Liberty. Also Daniel Ellsberg, Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, etc..

      One of the great regrets of my life is the stream of lies that were fed to me in my younger years. Another regret is that I was gullible enough to accept many of them for too long. A third regret is that the lying and willingness to believe lies seems never to end.

      “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy” by Greg Palast would be a good introduction to Washington for his trip there.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 4:02 pm

        Bill I will take your advice.

        I too Bill regret the history we were taught when we were growing up. I even believed the John Wayne war movie versions of how war is fought. Then came the Vietnam years, and all that baloney changed in an instant. With learning of how real life works, it only brought be around to wonder why we Americans glorify our wars the way we do, or have. Movies should be made, where we see the Gulf of Tonkin for what it was, and not feel so righteous for what they say it was. The same goes for the USS Liberty, or why not a big screen epic showing the audience what Johnathan Pollard had done with his spying. I could go on, but then again you know all this stuff Bill. Good for you to replay with the advice…thanks Joe

        • hyperbola
          June 18, 2017 at 11:00 am

          Maybe it is useful to have some articles that question “accepted truth” for specific topics? Here is one that I have always liked.

          Slow Boats and Atom Bombs
          https://www.lewrockwell.com/2004/01/tom-white/slow-boats-and-atom-bombs/

          …… In the course of writing those letters to my granddaughters I stumbled on a site called “The Unnecessary Bombs.” In one of my letters to them I quoted a whole raft of the remarks posted there that were made post-bomb by some military biggies (and some political ones), names that were once familiar to every household. Was I attempting to brainwash my granddaughters? Yes indeed.

          I sent along to them, too, this introductory statement made on the site, which I agreed with: “Most of the top US brass were against use of the bomb and did not regard it as militarily necessary [See quotes below]. Truman and Byrnes [then Secretary of State] delayed the end of the war and cost American and Asian lives by deliberately refusing to clarify the surrender terms, by deliberately stalling Sino-Soviet talks, by deliberately postponing the Potsdam conference, and by deliberately ignoring the many Japanese peace feelers.”…..

    • Dave P.
      June 15, 2017 at 2:17 pm

      Joe, most of the teachers have read the same type of books, and watched TV for their news source. So, the problem is getting more complex. I have read some articles over the last few years that they are very busy writing books to rearrange all the historical facts in Europe as well. In the new books Soviet Role in World War II will be covered in one chapter or so. As we know, the real World War II took place on the Eastern Front with four million German Army engaged on a 1600 mile long front line, starting in 1941. Normandy landings on the Western Front were in June 1944.

      Few years ago, I gave my very old history books away to the library. I wish now that I should have kept some of them.

      • backwardsevolution
        June 15, 2017 at 2:47 pm

        Dave P. – go to used book stores and see if you can’t find some of them again. Sad that the Soviet involvement will be reduced to one small chapter. I remember my old neighbor talking about her 19 year-old German brother never coming back home after he left to march into the Soviet Union. They never heard from him again, never knew what happened. He just didn’t come back. One of the four million.

        • Bill Bodden
          June 15, 2017 at 3:12 pm

          go to used book stores

          Try alibris dot com, abebooks dot com, betterworldbooks dot com or addall dot com

          • Dave P.
            June 15, 2017 at 3:43 pm

            Thanks Bill.

      • Joe Tedesky
        June 15, 2017 at 4:47 pm

        Dave I will never forget the first time I heard a teacher talk bad against the Vietnam war. It was 1968 and our history class had a just out of college substitute teacher, and somewhere around that time the government did away with college deferments. This substitute teacher felt bad that people like him with their expensive educations would die in Vietnam, but he got really angry at the idea that my graduating class wouldn’t even get a chance to go to college before fighting that ridiculous war. Boy, was that young substitute teacher upset, I can still see him having his fit. I remember it well, because up and until then I don’t remember anybody talking like that about that god awful war. So sometimes, I guess a teacher can step outside the normal propaganda long enough to make a good impression…let’s hope there are more of that substitute teacher out there. Thanks for your reply Joe

        • Kiza
          June 16, 2017 at 4:43 pm

          Joe, I appreciate your concern for your grandchildren’s education but reading the comments here I am surprised again how even the well meaning US people consider history an almost fixed thing. Having had my education in Europe I was made acutely aware that history is a highly mouldable thing which changes according to the flavor if the day. In some more fluid parts of Europe, even in a lifetime of a single person some events would go from positive to negative and back to positive. The Europeans love history but do not consider it a fixed thing, this is why they invented a term: historical distance. My understanding of this term is that your society needs to become emotionally and financially distanced from some important event to be able to evaluate it objectively. When nobody draws money from some situation or event any more, then the society is able to establish what really happened.

          Based on this I am not worried about the history of Ukraine and concerted efforts of the US establishment and its academic, intellectual and journalistic mercenaries to wipe out, not one but two, US organised and paid for coups in Ukraine. I am sure that the real history will not call it “democratic revolution” than a semi-military coup (done by the local Nazis).

          The second thing is that you are planting a seed in your grand-childrens’ minds (you mentioned more than one before) to question the ideological orthodoxy when the right time comes. Most individuals do not diverge from the orthodoxy until some trigger event in their lives. But such conversion to critical thinking happens much easier when there is a nagging little seed of doubt in the back of the mind. In other words, you are doing an amazingly good thing for your g’ch even though the immediate result may be disappointing (due to peer pressure etc etc etc). You are assisting the maturing of you g’ch into intellectually versatile individuals similar to you.

          • Skip Scott
            June 17, 2017 at 8:32 am

            Kiza-

            You are so right about that “nagging seed of doubt.” I was brought up Catholic, and had 5 years of Catholic school, with all its powerful indoctrination. My uncle used to take me to his place on the river for weekends, but the deal with my mom was that he had to take me to church on Sunday. We were taught that missing church was a “mortal” sin. One Sunday my uncle had a friend down who talked him into going down to the bay to fish on Sunday. That meant my missing church. My grandfather, who always came along and taught me how to fish, said to me “I don’t even know if there is a God, but if there is, I’m sure he’d rather see you fishing than stuck in some church.” Thus my “seed of doubt” was sown.

          • backwardsevolution
            June 17, 2017 at 5:38 pm

            Kiza – good advice. Skip – cute story.

  6. juliania
    June 15, 2017 at 10:19 am

    Unlike with other earlier conflicts, it was possible to follow events as they unfolded in Ukraine online. There were brave reporters and ordinary citizens putting their lives on the line – for instance that woman with a baby who marched up to grab a microphone and throw it away – unforgettable moment!

    I think it was a coming of age in the US for those who were interested to realize that mainstream media was a ‘caveat emptor’ situation – at least it was for me. And it was a coming of age for Russian recognition that they needed to present a better account of their own perceptions of the situation, since they themselves were still in the process of recovering from that critical period after the fall of the USSR. How they managed that ought to be someone’s perceptive reorganization of perceived historical events, because it all begins there. I really hope that is going to happen soon.

  7. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 10:32 am

    Russia. Leaks. At any cost.

    USA. Leeks. At any cost.

    Expand the garden. Russia gets nothing and the kids get everything. Hope gets everything else.

    Keep shutting them down. This is a joint UIA/OCB op with DES support. Don’t worry about HES. If caught, the agency does not know you. The possible is in the impossible.

  8. Hank
    June 15, 2017 at 10:34 am

    Nice review. For those of us who have closely followed this US led fiasco the mainstream version is as distorted as the Saddam-911 meme. The Nuland revelations, coupled with the restraint shown these paid destructive protestors, and the fact that Yanukovych offered to hold “early elections” shortly before he left office, seems to show a more lenient government than that portrayed by Mainstream Media (MSM). Further MSM did not spend much time discussing the long history half of Ukraine has had with Russia and later the USSR. There was no invasion of Crimea, the Russians have had military bases and thus military personnel there for years.Crimea is mostly Russian and therefore No surprise they did not wish to become part of a neo-nazi led state that is really more of a hybrid artificial state anyway. Kiev is tied to Russian history at its beginnings. I Highly recommend Russian experts. Professor Stephen Cohen, and Ray McGovern (ex-CIA analyst) and F. William Engahl for a much better analysis.

  9. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 10:38 am

    ATTN: WPO
    Just as he is solving for romantic unknowns with a gorgeous older girl, Moon must contend with his dad’s sudden absence, his mom-gone-wild’s sexcapades, and his best friends’ curious penchant for self-destruction. Not to mention his newfound role in agitating to end an African guerrilla’s bloody rampage.

    To make sense of it all, Moon embarks on a quest to unravel the riddle of God’s injustice to man.
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N01HFDF?psc=1

    President obstructed sex and God obstructed justice. It’s bloody merry hell in Washington. We have the rusty files and Mystic Pizza deal. It’s about to get wild for Mom. It’s not worth living your life without this Hope.

  10. mike k
    June 15, 2017 at 10:42 am

    What the government calls “special forces” are simply Mafia hit men. They have a license to be evil, and they pride themselves on being as evil as conceivable. This is their “esprit de corps.”

  11. Peter J Piaseckyj
    June 15, 2017 at 10:52 am

    Kalb has always been a Urainophobe and this article is a political statement and not worthy to be called news!

    • Realist
      June 15, 2017 at 11:10 am

      How does that square with the article’s contention that “Kalb’s book reflects the widely held, but erroneous, view that Putin’s Russia was the principal driver of the crisis and subsequent war”? Of course, that view is nonsense as Putin, pre-occupied with the Sochi Olympics at the time, was strictly reactive against the Washington-backed, Kiev-led putsch that drove Yanukovich from office. The only people threatened enough to display the least bit “Ukrainophobia” of which you speak would be the ethnic Russians in Crimea and Novorussiya, in cities like Odessa, Karkhov, Lugansk, Sloviansk and Donetsk.

      • Vladimir Bachynsky
        June 15, 2017 at 11:59 am

        That’s Kharkiv, not Kharkov. Your usage betrays your sympathies.

        • Bill Bodden
          June 15, 2017 at 3:18 pm

          Your response doesn’t address Realist’s question.

          • Martin - Swedish citizen
            June 15, 2017 at 5:50 pm

            True.
            Moreover, what the comment really does is betraying the narrow-mindedness of the writer. Half of the people of Ukraine are first language Russian speakers, and in Kharkov they make up the vast majority. It is easy to argue that Kharkov is much more proper.
            The Russian speaking Ukrainians consider themselves as Ukrainian as do the Ukrainian speakers of the north west. The problem is that the present leadership do their best to impose their north-Western perception of what Ukrainian means on the Russian speaking half of the country, and will not recognise their right to their way of being Ukrainian.
            This discriminatory mindset that has old roots in Galicia and apparently some appeal there, was exploited by the US and the EU, but maybe more hesitantly (F*ck the EU), for their own neocon purposes.

        • Adrian Engler
          June 15, 2017 at 3:18 pm

          In the city, both Russian and Ukrainian are used, Russian is used much more. Therefore, apart from nationalist extremists who disrespect the cultural diversity within Ukraine, no one can object the use of the name Khar’kov (the situation would be different with Lviv – to call the city Lvov in other languages would not make much sense because Russian is a foreign language there, in contrast to cities like Kharkiv/Kharkov, Odessa and, by the way, also the capital Kyiv/Kiev, where Russian also plays an important role in everyday life).

          • Realist
            June 15, 2017 at 4:55 pm

            The martyred ghosts who live there call it Lwow.

          • Martin - Swedish citizen
            June 15, 2017 at 5:52 pm

            Exactly my point!

          • Dave P.
            June 15, 2017 at 8:53 pm

            Kharkov may be, half of them Russians, and half Ukrainians, it matters little. The fact is that these people had lived together for almost four centuries now, first under imperial Russia, then in Soviet Union There is not all that racial or linguistic difference between Ukrainians or Russians in the Eastern Ukraine. To split them apart from their kin across the border – the families, friends, social and economic bonds, as it happened in 1991 is not right.

            The only just solution is to put them together again, South Eastern Ukraine with Russia. Did you watch the pictures of this joy and happiness of the People of Crimea, the evening of the Referendum in March, 2014 to join back with Russia. Watching on the Youtube – our media did not want to show it to our masses – I remember the scene in the Square that evening in Simferpol: Old People, young people, Grandmothers holding the hands of grand children, fathers with children on their shoulders, young couples, and veterans dancing in the streets. Here, day and night, the media, and our Rulers have been drilling into peoples heads that Russia invaded and annexed Crimea.

            The reason people were happy in Crimea is because of the way they were treated by Nationalist Government in Kiev after 1991. They banned Russian language, changed their names, set about changing the history books and much more.

            As I wrote in comments on yesterday’s article about Ukraine, India has 29 states based on languages. Three languages in the North are similar. Even people without education can understand each other. People in the North can not understand the people in the rest of States with different languages. Being under the empires for centuries, there is no clear cut line between the people at the state boundaries. They are mixed is an organic whole. To split the States into countries will cause chaos and suffering. If the Central Government in India starts banning the language of the State, or change their names, the people of that State are going to march to New Delhi, the Nation’s Capitol in thousands, and teach a lesson to the Government.

            That is called “Democracy” in action. Do the East Ukrainians have that right under this ultra-nationalist regime. The answer is NO. This right wing ultra-nationalist government in Kiev have forfeited all their rights to govern East Ukrainians. There is no democracy in Ukraine The only solution now is to put the South East Ukraine back with Russia. It is clear to the whole World except in the West where people have been effectively brainwashed, Russia is a secular state, a functioning democracy appropriate to the needs of that country. The rights of South Eastern Ukrainians – Russians, Russian-Ukrainian mix, and Ukrainians. – will be well protected in Russia.

            And the Nationalists in Ukraine must be restrained by the Western Governments from the violence, and death and destruction they are causing in Eastern Ukraine. And the Western Nations Project to tear the people of South East Ukraine away from their Russian brothers across the border should be abandoned.

            If the U.S. and NATO agree to stay away from the Russian borders, I believe Russians would let go their Chechnya, Degestan, and other small republics in the Caucasus their own way. I read in some articles some years ago that majority of the Russians want to let those Republics go.

        • Adrian Engler
          June 15, 2017 at 3:34 pm

          Insisting on Kharkov (Russian name) always being called Kharkiv (Ukrainian), even though the Russian language is in the first place in the city (Russian is used more although there are more ethnic Ukrainians, but many of them use Russian very often, and a large minority of the inhabitants of Kharkov/Kharkiv are ethnic Russians) is just as stupid as if someone demanded that the seat of many UN institutions in Europe was called Genf (German) rather than Geneva/Genève (French) because the majority of Switzerland is German-speaking, even though Geneva itself is French-speaking.
          In the context of Ukraine, we often see a kind of extreme nationalism and intolerance towards cultural diversity that would be considered completely unacceptable in other parts of Europe.

          • Dave P.
            June 16, 2017 at 3:57 am

            Ukraine as a new Nation State, sprang up as a result of accident in History. It would have been wise for the Leaders of the newly created State to start about building institutions appropriate to their culture, people, and language mix, and their ancient,and recent ties for four centuries to Russia, including the Western Ukraine’s ties to Eastern European neighbors. They should have created constitution with equal status for both languages Russian and Ukrainian, a neutral Nation with economic ties to Russia and E.U.. There would have been no problems.

            Kazakh leaders were much wiser. There existed no Kazakhstan Nation State in History. They had eight million Russians in their country, and kept Russian as a second language, and economic ties with Russia.

            Ukrainians should be grateful that they got all this prime land (the biggest country after Russia in Europe) by accident. With close to twenty million Russian Speaking People in their borders, they have been busy banning Russian language, eradicating everything Russian with in the Country, changing names of Russians, revising the History books, making the Russians to watch movies and the news in Ukrainian, and so on. And the Western European countries and U.S. did not say a word. In fact, all the NGOs and other Western Institutions have been actively involved in helping Ukraine in this process.

            After what has happened in Donbass, the reconciliation seems not possible. Gaining all this territory by accident, these Ukrainian Nationalists are on sterroids,- of neo-nazi Fascist cocktail variety.

            Future is uncertain. I Watched Oliver Stone’s fourth segment of Putin Interview. During Oliver Stone’s questions on U.S. cyber warfare unleashed against most of the World Nations,including Russia, Russia’s vulnerability, and response, it seemed like Putin was hurt inside, and at unease answering the questions. How much burden on his shoulders to keep his Nation calm? And what he is going through – with all this vilification of him and Russia 24/7. It elicits one’s sympathy for him, and for Russia.

          • Pixy
            June 17, 2017 at 7:20 am

            This is no factually correct. Russians are the majority in the East Ukraine, most certainly they are the majority in Kharkov. The fact is though, that at the last “population count” many people preferred to list themselves as “Ukrainians” rather than “Russians”. Which goes to demonstrate a bit the general atmosphere in that “state”, where if you want to have better life and be treated better you have to officially change your ethnicity. And your name with it too. Then you would be left alone. There’s a a video of a Ukrainian parliament member visiting kindergarten and urging 5-year-olds to change their Russian names to Ukrainian ones, cause otherwise they become “aggressors and separatists”. So there you go. Congrats on democracy and freedom, Ukraine!

        • Realist
          June 15, 2017 at 4:57 pm

          So what? Why not? You should have noticed that all the spellings I used were the Russian ones. I see them as the victims in all this.

  12. Bill Goldman
    June 15, 2017 at 11:38 am

    I suppose all the literary rhetoric in the article can be summed up as a fascist coup by the Bandera element in Ukraine sponsored, armed, and financed by the US CIA. If we weren’t involved, please explain why lit was necessary to overnight stealthily move physical gold in Kiev to the US Treasury controlled vaults.

  13. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 12:04 pm

    “Some cultures are prosperous; some are not. Some value rational discourse and the scientific method; some do not. Some encourage freedom of expression, and some discourage it. The only thing they have in common is that if they do not propagate, they will be swallowed up by others. All they have built up will be torn down; all they have accomplished will be forgotten; all they have learned and written will be scattered to the wind. In the old days it was easy to remember this because of the constant necessity of border defence. Nowadays, it is all too easily forgotten.
    “New Atlantis, like many tribes, propagates itself largely through education. That is the raison d’être of this Academy.”

    “Miss Matheson’s philosophy of education”

    Russia is lame and not prosperous. Operating on leaks is desperate without the housewives. We’re to blame. Every deal in this business is a deal with the devil and if you play your cards right you can stay on the offense. Keep throwing the ball. Always be the QB. Putin is just a punter. Snowden is a place holder stuck in place. New Atlantis or bust Hope.

    • Abe
      June 15, 2017 at 1:31 pm

      “UIA” – Ukrainian Internet Army – “desperate without the housewives”

      • Kiza
        June 15, 2017 at 5:47 pm

        Great comment Abe, but it may be better not to feed the troll, starve him/her of consideration.

  14. F. G. Sanford
    June 15, 2017 at 12:57 pm

    I’d like to put in a plug for the article as well as a recommendation to read the link Bob Van Noy submitted. Mae Brussel was routinely written off as a “conspiracy theorist”, but that is a grotesquely unfair characterization of this brilliant researcher. The linked article does contain some difficult to substantiate material as well as some which may be factually in error. BUT – and this is a significant “but” – much of it had been corroborated by serious researchers during her lifetime. Much more has received irrefutable documentation through official records releases since her death. Where the article runs into historical difficulty is not in the grand sweeping narrative she presents, but in the difficulty of proving the survival of Martin Bormann and the so-called “Bormann Organization”. Nevertheless, the financial, political and organizational structures Bormann initiated – famously at a meeting at the Maison Rouge Hotel in Strasbourg – did occur. So did “Operation Paperclip”.

    Brussel, contrary to the Alan Dulles dismissal that, “Americans don’t read anyway”, actually did read the Warren Commission Report. So did Jim Garrison – all twenty six volumes. Brussel indexed, tabulated, cross-referenced and investigated footnotes for years. She came to the same conclusion Garrison did: The Warren Commission Report contradicts itself, exposes its own fraud and confirms that it was a coverup to conspiracy.

    The links to Nazi elements in Ukraine through Alan Dulles’s CIA recruitment efforts through initiatives such as the “Crusade for Freedom” program are real, and the Nazi elements operating in Ukraine today have their pedigree in the Waffen SS Galician Division of Hitler’s Wehrmacht. Note that early in her article, she mentions Otto von Bolschwing, to whom I referred in a comment two days ago. These are not “neo” Nazis. They are ideological descendants of “the real thing”.

    Mae Brussel’s father was a Rabbi. If she were alive today, I am sure that she would be horrified to learn that our trusty Neocons – many of whom are Jewish – have gotten into bed with these despicable psychopaths. Europe will pay a price for decades to come because of this Neocon/CIA engineered fiasco. That price may include nuclear annihilation.

    • Bob Van Noy
      June 15, 2017 at 4:59 pm

      Thank you F. G. Sanford for the wonderful plug. She was an amazing woman who, like Bobby, “Saw wrong and and tried to right it”.
      For those interested in further reading, here is a link to her main page. Go to: about Mae Brussell first.
      http://www.maebrussell.com

    • Dave P.
      June 16, 2017 at 4:23 am

      F.G.: Thanks, I was not familiar with this history. Your last remark ” Europe will pay a price . . .. That price may include nuclear annihilation”. I have often thought about it. Europe is a small area. Japan, south Korea are tiny countries. U.S. is putting all these ABM systems in Europe, Japan, and South Korea. U.S. and Russia have about 8000 nuclear warheads each. In spite of this shield would not some nuclear warheads slip through. If they do, there will be utter destruction.

      Merkel is all on board. In fact, she is accomplice of Obama in this Ukraine fiasco you mentioned. Is there any wise leader left in Europe? Jeremy Corbyn is the only one I see.

      • Martin - Swedish citizen
        June 16, 2017 at 7:32 am

        Yes, Europe will pay a price, and is definitely already paying a price. Consider what Europe could have been, had we sincerely greeted the heir states emerging from the fall of the USSR. Instead, we have a situation very similar to the old cold war.
        It is an intriguing question how come Europe’s politicians and MSM act this way, but clearly Europe carries enormous responsibility. It was hinted by those who should know that in the case of the Kiev coup, the EU foreign policy organisation was simply incompetent, very weak, but this of course is only a small facet of the puzzle.
        Jeremy Corbyn deserves praise.

  15. June 15, 2017 at 1:00 pm

    The consensus among various factions within the political establishment is that Russia is a rival and an enemy. This is true of both the “realists” and the “neoconservatives/neoliberals (i.e., those that use the “responsibility to protect” excuse for Imperialism). Both sides (with their variants) believe the U.S. exists specifically to rule the world they just differ in method and time-scale. This, in a sense, represents the Great Schism of 1054 where the Eastern and Western Church split. Western Civilization always sought world domination–they wanted to recreate the old Roman Empire whereas civilization based on the Orthodox Church was more focused on developing the spiritual life and controlling the world was not so important.

  16. Bill Bodden
    June 15, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    Hunter Biden’s shady business dealings,

    Hunter Biden, apparently a chip off the old Joe Biden block. The only surprise there is the exposure the son got instead of being behind the curtain.

  17. backwardsevolution
    June 15, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    James Carden – I liked your article very much. Thank you. The EU, the Russians, the U.S., the Nazis, NED, NATO, the Donbass – you spelled out all of the characters and their motives. The timeline is so important, isn’t it, and if you leave one actor out or downplay their significance, it makes such a difference to the story’s conclusion. You did a great job.

  18. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    What the government calls “special forces” are simply… supreme warrior artists, like a kinda peace corp. Supreme art of war is to disable the enemy without fighting and we have lots of disabled enemies. People believe the movies. NSA has made the world more polite with surveillance.

    “In an era when everything can be surveiled, all we have left is politeness.”
    Major Napier, “Hackworth’s situation develops new complications

    Enjoy the zoo
    And walk down 42nd Street
    You wanna be excited too
    And you will feel the heat

    We eat the night, we drink the time
    Make our dreams come true
    And hungry eyes are passing by
    On streets we call the zoo

    Be polite to the ladies and don’t take mine furniture shopping or you’ll need a box to sleep in.

  19. UIA
    June 15, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    Up here in space
    I’m looking down on you.
    My lasers trace
    Everything you do.
    You think you’ve private lives
    Think nothing of the kind.
    There is no true escape

    I’m watching all the time.
    I’m made of metal
    My circuits gleam.
    I am perpetual
    I keep the country clean.

    Battle of the bands. We’ll beat them with drums and six strings. It’s all meant in good clean fun Hope. It’s that or hopeless in Russia.

  20. mike k
    June 15, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    So I just heard on CNN that the Secret Police are now officially investigating president Trump. One of their six ways to Sunday of getting back at those who offend them, no doubt. So the Coup of the US government proceeds while the people sleep, lulled by the consoling music of CNN – the official voice of the Coup leaders.

  21. mike k
    June 15, 2017 at 3:58 pm

    The blatantly false and corrupt vote in the senate increasing sanctions on Russia because of it’s supposed hacking of the US election, should tell president Trump how much support he can look for from that body. I suppose the coup by Bush against Al Gore, and the assassination of JFK, MLK, and Robert Kennedy should have warned people of the evil power wielded by the Secret Police, but the clueless populace sleeps on, and will probably swallow this outrage as well – except for some disgruntled gun toting Trump supporters, who will be put down by the militarized police without too much trouble.

    • Lisa
      June 16, 2017 at 5:01 pm

      “The blatantly false and corrupt vote in the senate increasing sanctions on Russia because of it’s supposed hacking of the US election”

      This is something I just cannot grasp – it is enough with “alleged” Russian interference in the US election, and the Senate and Congress can decide of new sanctions – that is, punishing someone with just a suspicion to lean on. What happened to the principle “innocent until proven guilty”? It doesn’t apply for the highest governmental organs, obviously.

      And the same organs of government can decide to impeach a President? Without proof of any wrongdoings?
      (I am not American so excuse me for my ignorance)

      • Martin - Swedish citizen
        June 16, 2017 at 5:52 pm

        Lisa, I am also not American and wondered exactly the same thing here the other day. Maybe it is our non-Americanness that makes us react?
        American lynching tradition?

        It is outrageous, of course, and if not our own governments and press react, that is outrageous, too.

  22. mike k
    June 15, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    It seems that the fascist oligarchs who control our government are now ready to take off the gloves and introduce us to a more overt militarized police state, with only the most perfunctory nods towards the rule of law, or what little is left of it. We will soon be introduced to the more onerous features of a totalitarian state, all in the name of our “security.” Dissent of any kind will be treated as too dangerous to tolerate, and those determined to continue it will be silenced, jailed, or simply killed. What civilized protections for individual freedom we had managed to erect will be roughly set aside, and new laws passed against those safeguards. Our time of troubles is due now to enter a new phase, one that may be the last in our brief history on Earth.

  23. Kiza
    June 15, 2017 at 5:42 pm

    “It is often said, that journalism – especially the version coming from The New York Times, The Washington Post and other mainstream newspapers – serves as the “first draft” of history.”

    Dear Mr. Carden, Historica Americana is worth as much as Pax Americana. It is swill produced for domestic and vassal consumption, which will disappear with the decline of US. Therefore, you are taking it too seriously. People of the world read the said newspapers only to understand what US wants, not to establish historical records.

    Otherwise a good article.

  24. Balderdash
    June 15, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    One of the very best photographic and video records of he Ukrainian revolution has been totally erased. Previously part of a now defunct chat site called Militaryphotos.org, the Ukrainian discussion pages were initiated when the Maidan festvities first came to notice in late 2013. The events were documented, from a number of perspectives, on a daily basis, until the Militaryphotos.org site was terminated in 2016. The discussion thread was temprorarily transferred and maintained on another site called the messhall.org. That site dwindled-off and the residue was atchived since then in a storage site. Someone was trying to raise funds to maintain it, unsuccessfuly – and the archive was, apparently, erased earlier this year. There was no other similar records of Ukraine’ s descent from flailing state to self-destruction.

    The narrative was ‘all’ there including history before it was changed. A great loss for the world.

  25. June 15, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    Brilliant. The most accurate, informative analysis of how nefarious, perfidious, insidious neocon war-hungry profiteers have led humanity to the brink of nuclear annihilation. Thank you.

  26. June 15, 2017 at 7:01 pm

    Good to know, through Mr. Carden’s article, that some writers on the Ukraine situation are interested in accuracy as opposed to Marvin Kalb, who has spent years as part of “main sewer media”, to use Kiza’s great term. Sam F., that was a great post. Paul Craig Roberts’ statement that the MIC officials are incapable of thought, of course he means rational thought. Their actions lead to chaos, which they have sown widely, from Iraq to Libya, Somalia, Ukraine, everywhere including Central, South America, everywhere they find a government not receptive to corporate capitalist control. They operate through managed chaos theory through proxies, go in and make a mess, take the gold or oil or whatever the booty happens to be. They are like pirates, bandits. That is probably what they want, chaotic situations. The USA is also managed chaos. It is Naomi Klein’s “shock doctrine”, disaster capitalism exported all over the world.

    • Sam F
      June 16, 2017 at 8:39 am

      Thanks Jessica; foreign and domestic chaos profiteering is certainly a factor, especially where factions see immediate gain, and have learned hypocrisy to ignore the loss to others. Of course such groups often fit happily into a better plan, but the plan must be established by more humane characters, which our oligarchy controlled elections and mass media have prevented.

  27. June 15, 2017 at 7:39 pm

    Thanks for the link to Mae Brussell’s article, Bob Van Noy. David Talbot’s book, “The Devil’s Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America’s Secret Government” has a chapter on Operation Sunrise to aid Gehlen for Dulles’ recruitment of Nazis through Operation Paperclip, but her information about so many other figures and their shady connections is far greater in length than Talbot goes to in his book, which is more a look at Dulles’ behavior and motivation. Talbot stated that Dulles controlled so many details of the Warren Commission that inside players dubbed it the “Dulles Commission”, and he was no longer at CIA, having been fired by JFK because of the Bay of Pigs fiasco. Talbot stated that Dulles set himself up in the weeks before the assassination at a CIA camp near Langley and government operatives were coming to meet with him there as though he were still head of CIA.

    • Bob Van Noy
      June 15, 2017 at 7:46 pm

      You’re welcome Jessica K. Thank you.

  28. Kiza
    June 16, 2017 at 3:28 am

    I would like to offer a different view of the crisis in Ukraine then described in this article through the critic of the “established history”. I feel that Mr James Carden has insisted too much on “Russian interest” in its narrow sense of the geo-strategic interest. Although such component does exist, because Ukraine is similar to Canada for US and because it has been said that Russia without Ukraine is not a true power population wise, there are some more important considerations.

    The key problem of this article appears to be that Mr Carden cannot shake off the Washington orthodoxy that Putin’s Russia wants to expand.

    My contrarian view is that:
    1) Russia does not want Ukraine under its wing in the medium term because this would stretch the Russian resources too far too soon after Russia recovered from the pillaging and chaos under Yeltsin
    2) It appears that the Ukrainians (the Western and the Eastern) have a bit of a bad image as freeloaders, which is one more reason for Russia to want to leave the ownership of Ukraine to US and EU; Putin also practices the Pottery Barn rule: you break it you own it; naturally it will be EU as US always ignores the chaos that its policies leave behind
    3) Putin was truly focused on the Sochi Olympic Games (including the anti-terrorism challenge) and was not prepared for the coup which was cooked up by NED (CIA), Soros & Co.; but for the reason from the previous point it did not get too fussed about the coup (EU and US are now the proud owners of the Ukrainian disaster, no amount of blaming Russia will change that)
    4) Russian acceptance of the Crimean referendum was a purely defensive reaction to the coup, nothing was ever circled on the map (such rubbish); the main reason for the acceptance of Crimea was to preserve the rare warm water port historically owned by Russia – a truly vital defensive interest
    5) The acceptance of Crimea into Russian Federation was a hard bargain for Russia because it was breaching the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances that Russia signed with US and UK https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Budapest_Memorandum_on_Security_Assurances; the normal justification that when US breaches an agreement first (by organizing a coup in Ukraine) the other signatory is not bound by the agreement anymore either does not apply to US because US simply ignores its own breach of the agreement – covered by dollops of endlessly repeated propaganda until in the Western “history-oriented intellectual” environment such bull becomes an established truth
    6) The main current Russian interest in Ukraine is peace between its East and West and a degree of autonomy for the East to take the crisis off the agenda – the Russians are tired of it; the Russians hoped that Trump could bring a change of attitude, but the opposite has happened.
    Now the liberal pro-Western Russians are on a total defensive and they could easily be lynched by the general population if they continue promoting the Western style and approach. Russia will continue developing its self-sufficiency, orienting itself to Asia and strengthenning its military capability, because nobody expects any change of attitude in the West any more.

  29. Loyd R
    June 16, 2017 at 3:38 am

    As an American citizen currently living and working in Ukraine, everything I have experienced and seen couldn’t be further from what you are saying. “the revolutions “brought social, political, and economic suffering” in their wake.” Have you seen the progress the country has made domestically over the past three years compared to the past 25? My town alone, due to decentralization legislation aimed at creating more accountable and stable local governments went from a budget of $30,000 USD in 2014 to $1,300,000 USD currently. You speak of the bubble that Washington lives in but do not acknowledge your own. You speak of Putin not being at fault and that it was was the West? I’ve been to Kharkiv, Chernihiv, Kyiv, Irpin, Chernivtsi, Hlyboka, Sumy, and you know what I heard from everyone I met, most of them Russian speaking mind you? How this was their country. Yeah its has loads of problems, but they were 100% for their own sovereignty. And I know you’ll spout, “well the West didn’t respect their sovereignty!” Well the West didn’t poison a presidential candidate, attempt to rig an election, invade a sovereign nation, or supply weapons and troops to a sovereign nations internal conflict. You ignore facts.

    Let’s go a step further and say that your entire hypothesis of the start of the conflict was right. Despite all actual, documented evidence to the contrary. The Neocons funded, and lead the Maidan and it was all a big operation against Russia. So what? Ukraine’s government is now more transparent then it has been in 26 years since independence and the attempt to battle corruption has and continues to be an ongoing process with significant inroads, again. Local government accountability, ie better services to more regular Joes is better then it has been in the past 26 years. You can talk about big picture, overarching foreign policy themes all you want. But the simple fact remains, that domestically, more good has been done for regular Ukrainian citizens in the past 2 1/2 years then the previous 24. All of this mind you while fighting a conflict within their own borders.

    • Realist
      June 16, 2017 at 4:32 am

      You know what, even Joe Biden, who was put in charge of a hoped-for reform program in Ukraine, didn’t believe any of the malarkey you just spouted. He repeatedly took Poroshenko to the woodshed for the continued corruption in spite of the entreaties to clean up the place so the huge IMF loans could be justified. And he was frustrated every time. Even Joe, who found his son Hunter a cushy sinecure in the Ukrainian energy sector was disgusted with the inability or unwillingness of the entire culture of Ukraine to clean up its act. And your description of economic conditions in that country? 100% diametrically opposite of what any objective analysts have to say. The EU would be jumping for joy if conditions even remotely hinted at the transformation you claim. As to “rigging elections, invading countries, supplying weapons and troops to a sovereign nation’s internal dispute,” that IS exactly what the United States has done in Ukraine and numerous other countries. But you left out fomenting coups. We do that too, which is what got the ball rolling and made possible your supposed employment (probably for the CIA) in Ukraine three years ago. “Fuck the EU. Yats is our guy!” Who said that? Sure as hell wasn’t Putin. Either wake up or stop lying, “Loyd.”

    • Kiza
      June 16, 2017 at 7:42 am

      Gee, let us all move to Ukraine, it is turning into El Dorado (promised land). What you typed does not match one percent of what I heard from the Ukrainians.

      Loyd, since you are so knowledgeable, could you please explain to us what happened to the 40 tons of the Ukrainian national gold spirited away by men in balaclavas with US accents. It was Yanukovytch who accumulated the majority of it. Nobody has been able to locate it since the “revolution”.

      Glad to read that the “revolution” has worked out for some and their “good times” will last as long as the IMF loans keep coming. I will not mention a few billion of loans that Ukraine refused to pay back to Russia with US approval.

      • Loyd R
        June 16, 2017 at 8:18 am

        Just continue to read about how the world is crashing down around everyone and I and others will continue to actually work to try and help people make their lives better. CIA? lololol dude I’m a best a glorified consultant, but I guess any American in a foreign country has to have ulterior, malevolent, intentions if they are here right? Did I say at any point the system is perfect? Nope, but sitting back on online forums crying about the big, bad, USA certainly doesn’t help either. So let’s examine the alternatives, Ukraine was a democratic country aligned with Russia for 25 years after independence and literally nothing close to reforms happened. Yes, Poroshenko is polling terribly, and of course there is rampant corruption and problems. But god forbid they actually try to make their lives better. Again, I’ll take an attempt at reform and hopefully true democracy any day of the week versus how bad it was here the past 25 years. As to the missing money, literally any reputable source would show that the Yanukovych, you know the guy who had all of the control over the country, ran with it when he tucked tail and went to Russia. But, keep on sprouting those few statistics you read on sites like this. It’s okay, because you don’t know any better. I would post a bunch of sites for you to read about reform packages, legislation, Yanukovych corruption etc. But then again those are reputable sources, so I’m sure they are too “mainstream” for you guys, ie good research=bad! But I digress, I am proud to be here, and I will continue to try and help Ukrainians pull themselves up by their bootstraps and you continue to read whatever it is where you get your information.

        • Realist
          June 16, 2017 at 10:14 am

          I see, you’re “a glorified consultant,” so probably a military advisor teaching the Ukrainian militias, like the Azov killers, how to use American-provided weaponry. Why don’t you advise the government to honor the Minsk agreements which they signed? Your cuddly allies in Kiev were the ones who attacked, and continue to bombard, the Donbass oblasts.

          Putin did not start that conflict. He told the people of Lugansk and Donetsk that they would NOT be incorporated into Russia even if they petitioned as did Crimea. He advised them against holding a referendum which they did anyway because they were so appalled by the coup imposed by the thugs in Kiev. If the Minsk agreements were fulfilled the crisis would be over, the Donbass would rejoin Ukraine with home rule and Ukraine could continue to make threats against Russia right on the old border. But that’s not the name of your game, “Loyd.”

          And, yes, Sevastopol would be a NATO base today if Putin had not agreed to re-unite with Crimea. And who can blame him for that? Anyone leading Russia would have been remiss for not doing the same. America would have done the same in Russia’s place. We will not even give Guantanamo back to the Cubans who have repeatedly petitioned to get it back, rather than have it function as an American gulag.

          Your American employers do not want the conflict or the confrontation to end. The hapless Ukrainians, who have avoided the military draft in droves because they don’t want your war, even as their resources are privatised and usurped by Western corporations under the terms of the IMF loan, are supposed to continue being used as tools in your neocon-directed hybrid war against Russia. And that’s your role in the whole sorry affair too, “Loyd.”

          Ukrainians are hard up for jobs in their devastated economy. Why do they need Americans like you or Hunter Biden stealing them? Why do they need all the foreigners, like Saakashvili, being handed control of all the government agencies if this is not an American colonial take-over of Ukraine? Why is Kiev’s every diplomatic move to simply obstruct Russian trade and diplomacy, such as Nordstream2 which is needed to meet Europe’s energy requirements, if it’s goal is reform, efficiency and modernisation rather than to provide Washington with never-ending excuses to expand economic sanctions against Russia?

          Be honest, “Loyd” you are part of a program intended from its inception to simply damage Russia, whatever the cost to Ukraine and its citizens, not to help Ukraine. The objective of your neocon employers was to wrench Ukraine from its 1,000 year intimate association with Russia, bury it in debt from IMF loans, colonise it by American corporations, strip mine it for its resources leaving the natives with nothing–just as America has done with so much of the third world–and forcing the witless victims to serve as one more NATO garrison smack on Russia’s western border to intimidate them with missile batteries a mere 300 miles or so from Moscow, just as you have been doing in the Baltics where your comrades are menacing St. Petersburg.

          Your purpose is to make any defense against an American nuclear first strike impossible by essentially eliminating any response time. Whoever’s kids are in the photograph, “Loyd,” are having the threat of their lives ending in a nuclear war substantially increased by your actions, and you know that is the truth, not the rubbish you spout here about the “good” you are doing to help Ukraine against those bad Russkies. You can fool most Americans most of the time because they generally don’t care what their government does as long as it doesn’t bother them, “Loyd,” but not those who take the time to learn the facts, which includes most of those who read the truth here that the propagandists in the corporate media keep hidden from the public.

          I direct the same comments at you, Joe Bodia. There are NO Kremlin agents or trolls here. The trolls would be you guys. We are mostly loyal Americans (probably other nationals as well) who are sick and tired of America attacking country after country, killing and displacing MILLIONS of human beings to effect some vainglorious objective of US hegemony over the entire planet Earth. You know damned well that your object is to push that goal in Ukraine just as it has been delivered in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Bosnia, Kosovo, Serbia, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Pakistan, Panama, and most of Central America during the 1980’s. The list goes back through many more countries to our overthrow of Iran after WWII which explains their sour view of America, and much further than that if you read Gen. Smedley Butler’s book “War is a Racket.” Yes, the same Smedley Butler whom a clique of American industrialists trading with Hitler tried to recruit to overthrow the American government of Franklin Roosevelt. You are part of a team for whom human life has no meaning in your quest to project power, or full spectrum dominance as your colleagues call it. So, “Loyd,” go peddle your bullshit elsewhere on behalf of “the company” or whatever government agency you work for.

          • Cal
            June 16, 2017 at 2:46 pm

            ” I see, you’re “a glorified consultant,” so probably a military advisor ‘

            I doubt that….more likely he works for some US funded agency like teaching English at the ‘Center for English’ in Ukraine. He’s most likely a little guy who is so happy to have a gov or NGO paycheck in a foreign country that he rolls over and pees this shit all over himself and everyone else.

        • Kiza
          June 16, 2017 at 10:43 am

          Hey, read my comment again. You need to because you do not get things in the first reading. Therefore, you are not intelligent enough to be a CIA agent. NED is a CIA arms length agency, where did I say that you are CIA? You wish. You are some pen pusher bureaucrat dreaming of money and power and selling bull in the mean time.

          I read also how you answered my question NOT about the missing Ukrainian gold. But at least you called it money, beacause gold is the only real money. The guys you work for are loaning Ukraine the US fiat in return for the gold that they stole. Well, I certainly hope that if Russia ever takes Ukraine away from you, your loans will be as unpayable as the Russian loans to Ukraine are under you.

        • Cal
          June 16, 2017 at 2:37 pm

          Dear Lloyd.

          Some of us, like me. followed every twist and turn every day from the beginning –comparing accounts and shifting out the facts from the propaganda in dozens of news papers abroad and dozens of sites and ‘on the ground’ reporting’ as the events took place.
          Soooooo… we do not need your reading recommendations as to what really happened.

          (Lloyd is no doubt receiving a US taxpayer funded , Soros funded check or one from the dozens of NGO ‘democracy spreading’ ops in the Ukraine.)

          What a smug ignorant idiot. Stay in the Ukraine Lloyd don’t came back to the US. People like you are the problem in the US….the ones who cant see and don’t care about the BIG PICTURE.

          If Lloyd was Jewish he would no doubt be a Israeli ‘settler’ in Palestine.

          • Loyd R
            June 16, 2017 at 4:08 pm

            Lololol man you guys are great. I just happened to click on this article today and man am I glad I responded. Again my work is in no way related to the military, and also it is no way in related to teaching English. Also I’m glad you like my name, that is in fact my name, and my picture bc unlike you trolls I don’t mind my reputation and face being associated with what I say. I tell you what, you stay in whatever podunk town in America you’re in, sitting in your lazy boy guzzling whatever loony news site you watch, and I’ll keep actually working on these, “big bad problems,” You guys embarrass me as an American, and you embarrass yourself.

          • Kiza
            June 16, 2017 at 5:37 pm

            Yes Loyd, I got it that you are a consultant, which means a pro-bs-er always “working” for the betterment of something or other and especially your own pocket.

            For me, you are just another example of a typical civilian individual who follows behind the US military and CIA after they bust up a country. Most of the money which the US nominally spends on rebuilding such busted up country is leached by individuals such as you. I met your kind in other post-color-revolution countries before. Then it is also not surprising that you are an even greater believer in the official and to you personally lucrative fairytale of progress in Ukraine than a typical MSM journalist in US. As they say – never stand between a man and the source of his income. You will not accept the reality of Ukraine until it crashes down on your head. You better have a rat-line for returning back to US when your fairytale ends soon.

            When I encountered your kind in another country, what surprised me the most is how highly structured these “rebuilders” are. There are NGOs which do clean ups, then those which prop up the newly appointed regime, help it with the right propaganda, help it with turning the central bank into dependence on the Western financial institution, prepare the national companies for privatisation (the best ones go to Soros’ investors), changing the education system to teach children of the virtues of the new regime and so on and so on. They are all project-based NGOs paid by a combination of US Government and private “philanthropists” such as Soros. There is a lot of money in this and some locals also prosper and when it ends they try to join the same NGOs in the next busted up country. BTW such specialised post-bust-up NGOs even have conferences where they discuss the effectiveness of goverment-change techniques post “revelation” such was Maidan.

            Based on what you wrote, I place you somewhere into media or education “consultancy”, a gig so highly paid that you could never dream of in US, but short term. This is why your kind is awaiting the next country to be busted up to go leach there, from contract to contract, as long as there are countries left to bust up (oh the wet dream of busting up the juiciest prize of them all called Russia).

          • Kiza
            June 16, 2017 at 5:55 pm

            Once a busted up country drops out of the MSM news in US and EU is when these civilian worms get unleashed on the carcass of the bombed or government-changed country. It is rare that they get engaged in media (Internet) consultancy of the home country. Therefore, Loyd is either paid to come to CN or he may even be reprimanded by his NGO boss for spilling the beans here unauthorised.

            If it is true that Loyd R is his real name, as he claims, then it is more likely that he had been instructed to assist the MSM journalism in the home country by pushing the same bull online. Bad luck that the Internet can bite back unlike the one-way MSM.

          • backwardsevolution
            June 17, 2017 at 9:51 pm

            Kiza, Realist, Cal – where was I when the brains got handed out? I must have gotten the table scraps. Jesus, what a smack down!

  30. June 16, 2017 at 6:33 am

    More Anti-Western Kremlin claptrap.

    “The narrative boils down to this: had it not been for the actions of Vladimir Putin following the glories of the Euro-Maidan protests, Ukraine would have, peacefully and in due course, joined the European family of nations. But Putin, so the story goes, was infuriated that Ukraine rejected his vision of a neo-Soviet Eurasian Economic Union, and took revenge by annexing Crimea. Having stolen Crimea, Putin then turned his sights on the Russophone eastern part of Ukraine where forces under his control have been waging “hybrid war” ever since.”

    The narrative boils down to that, because that is what has happened, no matter how much the Kremlin propaganda machine tries to deny, state sponsored actors like Strelkov white the first draft as they chronicled thier actions on social media as they did it.

  31. Kiza
    June 16, 2017 at 8:03 am

    Yeah, I heard that if Russia financed a coup in a Canada and kept arming and training the worst criminals in the country, who then killed ten thousand English speaking Canadians by daily bombadment, burning some alive and banning English language, US would not send at least its special forces to save the Anglo Canadians from the criminal gangs supported by the foreign interlopers. Nooooo, never, because US is known for respecting international borders unlike Russia.

    • Skip Scott
      June 16, 2017 at 10:53 am

      Kiza & Realist-

      I absolutely love your takedowns of Loyd R and Joe Bodia. Kiza, the MSM shills would no doubt accuse you of “false equivalence” because we are the “exceptional” nation, don’t cha know. Same for you, Realist. Shame on you for comparing Guantanamo to Sevastopol! As for me, I’m still waiting for Putin’s check to arrive. With these damn sanctions, it’ll probably bounce anyway.

      • Kiza
        June 16, 2017 at 11:02 am

        Dear Skip, I mentioned before the conviction trolls and the professional (paid) trolls. These two, which could be the sock puppets of one operator, are of the latter kind. Believe you me, I have had duels with such pros since 1998, at the time when bulletin boards and news groups were the battlefield instead of www Internet zines such as CN, that is almost 19 years of anti-propaganda online unpaid and out of enthusiasm.

        Thanks for your moral support again.

        • Loyd R
          June 16, 2017 at 4:10 pm

          Hey! Glad you think I’m a professional! Nope first article I’ve ever commented on, I just happen to actually understand the situation.

          • Kiza
            June 16, 2017 at 6:13 pm

            Read my comment above about your profession. There is a good chance that you coming here has been approved by your NGO boss and it is during the business hours, which would make you a professional troll, even if this is your first comment. Even pros have to start somewhere.

          • Martin - Swedish citizen
            June 17, 2017 at 8:30 am

            Hey Loyd,
            I’ll assume you are not a troll, and take your comments seriously. To me it speaks in your favour that you read this article and hopefully others on the site, and bother to comment. There are enthusiastic Swedes, too, maybe like you, that go to work in Ukraine, Moldova etc, believing in the Euromaidan cause. If you are sincere, then your understanding of the situation is a valid view of the complex reality, too.
            I have a long experience working in and with the former USSR, and have followed the development in the Ukraine, and I can definitely say that I understand the situation, and so do practically all other commentators here, as they also say.
            If you are serious, I propose you analyse the main arguments presented in the articles and comments here, and try to reconcile, integrate them, with your view. Actually, what you write doesn’t contradict much of what is said here. Yes, Poroshenko polls badly, for instance.
            It is good if you accomplish something positive in Ukraine. I think your criticism of others for only commenting and no action is unfair. Hopefully, it is read and contributes to a much needed more objective debate than the MSM propaganda. That is extremely important in the present vacuum. If you are sincere, you should welcome this.

            You say there are positive developments, and things were worse prior to the Euromaidan. Hopefully there are good things developing, but facts tell that things are as bad or worse now than before.
            Some seem to believe that Western standards and ideas are, by definition, the ideal that other cultures should copy. This mindset may guide what is done in Ukraine, and may lead those that subscribe to that idea to endorse what has happened. This idea is undemocratic, discriminatory, and disastrous.
            Here is a link to a survey made by the IRI (International Republican Institute, financed almost entirely by the US government, the board of directors headed by Sen John McCain). The lowdown is things are as bad or worse than before the Euromaidan.
            http://www.iri.org/sites/default/files/wysiwyg/2016-07-08_ukraine_poll_shows_skepticism_glimmer_of_hope.pdf
            Last spring, I met and had a chat with two Ukrainians. It turned out they were from Lviv, staying in three-month periods in Sweden as construction workers, in between returning home to help family and comply with visa rules. They told me things had got worse in Ukraine, it was really tragic now (????!). Oligarchs rule and steal, they told me, not least Poroshenko and Yatsenyuk. The remote hope stood with the EU. I fear they may be disappointed, but hopefully, all parties come to their senses.

          • Martin - Swedish citizen
            June 17, 2017 at 8:33 am

            the (????) said “beda!” in Russian

      • Realist
        June 16, 2017 at 7:23 pm

        Believe me, Skip, I am just a retired old biochemist who’d rather be digging in his garden than trying to point up the follies of our American government, but they have simply become magnified beyond belief in this 21st century. Almost makes the Vietnam era look tranquil and polite in comparison.

        • Kiza
          June 16, 2017 at 11:23 pm

          Great point Realist. I have been thinking as well that Vietnam looks terribly naive compared with this current organised evil by the Regime Change Ecosystem and Food-chain.

    • Sam F
      June 16, 2017 at 11:11 am

      Good counterpoint. Nothing terrifies the right wing more than the prospect of getting a dose of their own medicine. Canada or Mexico might do well to discuss closer relations with Russia and China, to moderate US troublemaking in other spheres.

  32. Herman
    June 16, 2017 at 8:54 am

    Mr. Carden: “It is often said, that journalism – especially the version coming from The New York Times, The Washington Post and other mainstream newspapers – serves as the “first draft” of history.” True.

    And whose version of history will be hailed, that of Marvin Kalb or the others mentioned by the author? Of course, all the commenters probably know the answer.

    I usually scan TCM, Turner Classic Movies, each morning looking for something worth watching. One of the most interesting periods of cinema history is the 30’s and how Russia was portrayed. What strikes you is how Russia is treated. First, the evil Bolsheviks but as we grew closer to World War II movies began to appear showing the Russians in a more favorable light. Even one where the other celebrity actor Huston, not John appeared in a semi-documentary placing Russia in a favorable light besieged by fascist saboteurs.

    Then the end of the World War and the beginning of the Cold War and the Russians became the bad guys again. The intensity subsided and we saw it expressed in Dr. Strangelove and the Russians are coming out of Hollywood. Then Senator Jackson and even Gorbachev and the end of the Cold War couldn’t put out the fire.

    Perhaps unknowable is why our “thought leaders” have this visceral hatred of Putin. It is probably genuine, perhaps better to say maybe it’s genuine. Maybe they could be viewed as more cerebral lemmings.

    The writer and the commenters cite all the valid reasons why this hatred persists and how our intellectuals are intimidated and compliant, but it still is a mystery. Makes you wonder whether we the doubters are wrong, that we just don’t get it.

    I wonder if I would feel better if I accepted the fact that Putin really is the devil, maybe the antichrist.

  33. Martin - Swedish citizen
    June 16, 2017 at 9:20 am

    Professional historians that I have asked point out that it is likely to take time before there is a totally clear picture of what really happened around and after the 2014 coup in Kiev. That it was a revolution/coup they say is perfectly clear (I mention this because recently Swedish media (and others I understand) actually deny this).
    One historian, who I understand to be highly respected in the field, and whose work is published by Routledge, is Dr Ivan Katchanovski of the University of Ottawa. His work on what actually happened at the Maidan massacre I understand is subject to controversy, but it seems very thorough, and is very chilling. His work can be found at Academia.org. Two articles that are highly connected to the present discussion are these:
    * “The Far Right in Ukraine During the “Euromaidan” and the War in Donbas”
    * “The “Euromaidan,” Democracy, and Political Values in Ukraine”
    The latter concludes i a that post-Euromaidan Ukraine is less democratic and has less freedom of press than the pre-Euromaidan Ukraine enjoyed.

    Professor emeritus John-Paul Himka I understand is considered a leading academic authority on modern Ukrainian history. Here is a link to his article presenting the background to the conflict:
    http://shron.chtyvo.org.ua/Khymka_Ivan-Pavlo/The_History_behind_the_Regional_Conflict_in_Ukraine_anhl.pdf
    It seems to me he gives a comprehensive, very well-written account of the many different dimensions of the conflict with tremendous trustworthiness.

  34. Michael Kenny
    June 16, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    This seems to be largely a “re-run” of Robert Parry’s article of yesterday. What both Mr Carden, and the writers he quotes, all seem to leave out of consideration are the human rights of Ukrainians. Do Ukrainians not have the same right to self-determination, independence and national sovereignty as the rest of us? Mr Carden seems to postulate that they do not but doesn’t say why. He seems to postulate that merely because some far-right elements support Ukrainian indepencence deprives the Ukrainian people as a whole of the above mentioned rights. Why? He also seems to postulate that misconduct on the part of other countries, without any misconduct on Ukraine’s part, justifies depriving Ukrainians of the abovementioned human rights. Why?

    • Skip Scott
      June 16, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      What about the rights of the ethnic Russian majority in southern and eastern Ukraine? The Crimeans had their right to rejoin Russia fulfilled, but what about the rest? I believe in universal human rights, and the right to self-determination. It is the western proxy portion of the population that is trying to derive the ethnic Russian portion their human rights. They want independence, or at least some autonomy, from the US vassals in Kiev.

      • Realist
        June 16, 2017 at 7:37 pm

        Amazing what blinders some people wear, Skip, seeing only the faults of others while tolerating the exact same behavior from themselves.

        I’m not religious, but the late JC made a famous remark on the subject at hand: “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.”

        I think it may come down to the way they categorize other people, as either “us” or “them,” like all that’s rotten with identity politics. They live in a Manichean world of absolute good or evil. In this guy’s world all Ukrainians are good and all Russians are bad, regardless of their actions.

    • Dave P.
      June 16, 2017 at 5:01 pm

      Michael Kenny: When one starts with our fixed opinions and theoretical postulates, one can not see reality as it is. Hiding behind these high sounding words does not make any sense. If you have read any history, you will know that there never was any Nation State in History called Ukraine. That whole area had very fluid borders until seventeenth, and eighteenth century when Imperial Russia won it back again. Those eight Oblasts encompassing South East Ukraine, and Autonomous Republic of Crimea should never have been included in Ukraine. That border created between Russia, and South East Ukraine should never exist – it is an injustice against the People of South East Ukraine. One of the Candidates in the first round of French Presidential Election – I think, the Socialist Candidate – said that at the time of creation of Ukraine, boundaries should have been altered. West Ukraine has the right to self determination; so do the East Ukrainians, and the Crimeans.
      .
      It is good to see that some European Politicians are beginning to admit the reality of the situation. With no Visa rules for Ukrainians, the Western Europe is simply trying to bribe these people of South East Ukraine, to tear them away from Russia.

      Also, these are all short sighted policies of the Western Europe. In fifty years, it is going to be a different scene. The population of France is going to be half Muslim. In Sweden it will happen in couple of decades. Some of the other Countries of Western Europe are going to have a very large percentage of Muslim population, and other Non-European People. All this talk of returning to the fold of European Family, and all that will have a different meaning – in not too distant future. Same is the case with America, it is changing. California’s current demographics are: 38% Hispanics, 35% white, 10% black, and the rest from other countries. Texas, Florida, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada will be like that in a few years. And it going to be the same in many other States in thirty years or so.

      Creating all this hostility against Russia is simply foolish and short sighted. It will have grave consequences. It will be wise for Europe, and U.S. to start solving their problems which are accumulating with this ever changing World – instead of conquering the World creating death and destruction.

    • Pixy
      June 17, 2017 at 8:03 am

      How about a nation-wide referendum then? Why 10.000 drunken youngsters should decide the fate of 45 million?
      By the way, how come you didn’t notice the anti-maidan manifestations held on the neighbouring square in Kiev? Those who were against the over-throwing of the president? Those who opposed the European association, cause they were shrewd enough to, you know, just read the document. )))) And they saw clearly that it would not bring any prosperity to the country? What about them? Why do you ignore them? They were no less numerous than the girls and boys with EU flags, yet no one in Western media seem to have noticed them. Such a curious case of partial blindness….

  35. Cassandra
    June 17, 2017 at 1:44 am

    The most crazy-making feature in the whole crisis is the failure of anybody but me to bother reading the various constitutions and legal actions and realizing that Ukraine had no claim to Crimea.

    Ukraine seceded from the USSR in accordance with its constitution that provides that any autonomous bodies attached to the seceding state do NOT go with the seceding state automatically. The Supreme Soviet makes the call.

    The law laying out in detail the steps to secession provides that autonomous bodies attached to the seceding state have a right to sever the attachment and define their state status.

    Crimea did that. It held a separate referendum, all the USSR constitution required, and voted 94% to become a union republic of the USSR under the new union treaty then being negotiated by Gorbachev. Gorbachev was kidnapped the day before the scheduled ceremonial signing of the new Union Treaty by Russia. This does not nullify Crimea’s choice to the degree it can be realized.

    Between 1992 and 1994, Crimea launched an ongoing struggle to free herself from Ukraine, declaring independence and drafting a new constitution, which Ukraine refused to recognize. Ukraine also batted down several succeeding tries and finally just declared the Crimean constitution void. Crimea had no armed forces. What could she do?

    At the same time, Ukraine was negotiating the terms of secession, the divvy up, and trying to steal the Black Sea fleet. She had Soviet nukes on her soil and was threatening to resist any attempt to repatriate them. It was not a time when Russia could raise inflammatory issues with Ukraine even if Yeltsin had had the honour to do so. But at least she never signed Crimea away.

    Crimea was floating in limbo, but she was NOT, and never had been, subject to the sovereignty of Ukraine.

    • backwardsevolution
      June 17, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      Cassandra – thanks for the great post! Good job.

  36. June 17, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    That whole fucken article and the comments following it are just Western brainwahing propaganda. Mine was not published; as it often happen in that NSA’s BS media. No use for me to go any further; it will be a waste of time. Fuck You !

  37. tj
    June 17, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    to loyd r

    just because you, as an apparent westerner, are physically present in Western Ukraine and you get to travel around, apparently unfettered, in no way indicates that you and your point of view aren’t unduly biased. (What you say and the way you present it says to me that you are indeed.)

    here is an example:

    “Well the West didn’t poison a presidential candidate, attempt to rig an election, invade a sovereign nation, or supply weapons and troops to a sovereign nations internal conflict. You ignore facts.”

    Indeed?!! Who exactly are you describing there? You make allegations, apparently aimed at Russia, as though what you say is proven which it isn’t. The US did indeed actually in fact, as well as attempt to, poison presidential candidates and elected officials in other countries (and that isn’t just an unproven allegation. It is fact). NOTE the plural there! Obviously education hasn’t brought you knowledge or any degree of demonstrated educability due to exercising your own critical faculties. The US has interfered with and rigged elections in foreign countries, not the least examples were both in the Ukraine as well as in Russia, although there are more egregious examples. Well documented facts if you bothered to look. The US has, through proxies, even and particularly terrorist ones, as well by its own covert ops, been suppliers of weapons and troops to other sovereign nations internal conflicts; a more glaring recent one might be in Syria and of course there is what we were responsible for in Afghanistan. Again, plural! So, yes loyd, the West did all of that and more, and your disallowing all that speaks volumes about who you are, and who you represent when you post, and the very quality of the education you have received.

    Are you also a supporter of the OUN UNB and Azovs as well as their enthusiastic endorsement of the massacre in Odessa?

    You appear to me to be incapable of acknowledging “reality” beyond your own, as I see them questionable, “convictions”.

    This site is premiere for knowledgeable aware erudite discourse coming from lots of different places around the globe. One thing the majority share is the awareness that whatever is presented by popular media, western governments, and their propaganda arms, you can be sure it is distorted, if not being out right intentional lies; which in many many cases, although not all, it is.

    If this appearance of yours here on CN is really a “stumble upon it” encounter for you, as you claim, then because you are clearly no match for the intelligence, awareness and basic humanity which congregates here; do yourself a favor and the rest of us as well and mind your own business somewhere else.

    I know now if and when I see your “handle” I will skip your input.

    But thanks for dropping by. It is always, albeit a bit tiresome at this point, to see how self-deluded some folks can be as products of their propaganda training and their own willingness to shut down their ability to engage in critical thought. Money and self interest facilitates that dumbing down process for many, so it seems. Is that your excuse? Or are you just fanatically blind?

    BTW – your claimed experiences talking with “locals” around certain parts of western Ukraine in no way represents what many many others who also live, work, and have family in Ukraine have expressed. Are you willing to call all of them liars, or will you admit that your experiences might be a tad slanted and even ill-informed?

    • backwardsevolution
      June 17, 2017 at 10:34 pm

      tj – good rant! You hit the nail on the head with “money and self interest”.

    • Skip Scott
      June 19, 2017 at 8:13 am

      Thanks tj. Great job.

  38. GMC
    June 20, 2017 at 7:35 am

    I might add something. I lived in Ukraine during this period and have had enough time to reflect. It appeared that the Maidan was a revolt against President Yanukovych and his corrupt administration, and it was a known by most of the people that he was crooked, but then that was Kyiv’s middle name. When McCain and Nuland showed up to thumb their noses towards Russian speaking people and Russian Federation, things got real radical. Pres. Yanuk. got scared and at the end started to concieve to the people of Ukraine. He agreed to new elections, re-opening negotiations with the EU and to discuss most everything on the table. Obviously though, the US State Dept. { CIA/Mossad} couldn’t take the chance on letting the normal people of Ukraine sit down with Yanuk and iron out the eventual new admin. so the violence { snipers} were brought in to give the press/media time to blame it on Yanuk and Putin. The overheard conversation with Nuland and Ambassador Pyrat was the proof that the coup was US/EU controlled and even their choice of Pres. Poroshenko, PM Yatsi, Mayor Klitchko etc. was chosen way before the people of Ukraine had a choice in the matter. I actually thought maybe Poroshenko could repair some damage but he ended up being another Obama/ Trump traitor.Donbass/Donetsk was infiltrated and the western backed neo Nazis started murdering citizens in order to make it appear that pro Russian s started the fight. Pro Russians is an understatement because everyone west of the Dnieper River and Crimea are Russians. And as you can see President Putin intervenes when his allies and his People are confronted and murdered. I was in Crimea for the vote – it like old home week – and it still is. Spacibo

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