Why Putin Went to War

Two years ago Saturday Vladimir Putin explained why he went to war. He said he had no intention to control Ukraine and only wanted to “demilitarize” and “de-Nazify” it, after the U.S. had pushed Russia too far, wrote Joe Lauria.

Putin explaining his reasons for going to war. (AP screenshot from YouTube)

By Joe Lauria
Special to Consortium News
Originally published Feb. 24, 2022

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a TV address Thursday morning that the goal of Russia’s military operation was not to take control of Ukraine, but to “demilitarize” and “de-Nazify” the country.  Moments after he spoke, explosions were heard in several Ukrainian cities.   

The Russian Defense Ministry said these were “precision” attacks against Ukrainian military installations and that civilians were not being targeted.  It said Ukraine’s air force on the ground and its air defenses had been destroyed.

The Ukrainian government, which declared a state of emergency and broke off diplomatic relations with Russia, said an invasion was underway and that Russia had landed forces at the port city of Odessa, on Ukraine’s Black Sea coast, as well as entering from Belarus in the north.  It said it had killed 50 Russian troops and shot down six Russian fighter jets, which Russia denied.

Putin said one of the operation’s aims was to arrest certain people in Ukraine, likely the neo-Nazis who burned dozens of unarmed people alive in a building in Odessa in 2014. In his speech Monday, Putin said  Moscow knows who they are.  Russia said it aims to destroy neo-Nazi brigades, such as Right Sector and the Azov Battalion. 

Putin said the aim was not to occupy Ukraine, but he gave no indication when Russia might leave. It could be over quickly if Russia’s objectives are met. But war has its own logic and often lays waste to military plans. 

The BBC reported that according to Ukrainian authorities 50 civilians have been killed so far. President Joe Biden is certain how this will turn out.

“President Putin has chosen a premeditated war that will bring a catastrophic loss of life and human suffering,” Biden said Wednesday night. “Russia alone is responsible for the death and destruction this attack will bring, and the United States and its allies and partners will respond in a united and decisive way. The world will hold Russia accountable.”

Diminishing Russia

Biden speaks on Ukraine at White House last Friday. (Ruptly screenshot.)

Biden is to make a televised address on Thursday after he coordinates a response to Russia’s military action in Ukraine with the G7 and NATO. Biden said he will announce a new package of economic sanctions against Russia, in addition to those imposed on Monday, but reiterated that U.S. and NATO forces would not become involved. 

According to TASS, Russia’s news agency, the EU said it intends to weaken “Russia’s economic base and the country’s capacity to modernize.”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson even hinted at British military involvement. “Our mission is clear,” he said. “Diplomatically, politically, economically and eventually militarily this hideous and barbaric venture of Vladimir Putin must end in failure.” 

In a White House readout after the last phone call between Biden and Putin this month, Biden said Russia would be “diminished” if it invades, a longstanding U.S. goal.

In addition to the sanctions, Russia has faced widespread condemnation from most of the world, expressed at United Nations meetings this week, including an emergency session of the Security Council on Wednesday night.  Several nations spoke in melodramatic tones about the military operation changing global security. Many of those nations supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

On Monday, Putin said he would send Russian “peacekeepers” into Lugansk and Donetsk, which he recognized as states independent from Ukraine.  The West denounced it as an invasion, triggering the first round of sanctions against Russia. 

Putin said the Russian troops were sent in to protect ethnic Russians, many of whom have now fled for safety over the border to Russia.

Combat in Donbass

Fierce fighting was reported Thursday along the line of separation between Ukrainian forces and militias from Donetsk and Lugansk. It is not clear to what extent Russian forces are taking part in the Donbass battle and if the aim is to capture all of the two breakaway provinces.

Both had voted for independence from Ukraine in 2014 after a coup overthrew the elected president Viktor Yanukovych.  The new Ukrainian government then launched a war against the provinces to crush their bid for independence, a war that is still going on eight years later at the cost of 14,000 lives.

Neo-Nazi groups, such as Right Sector and the Azov Battalion, who revere the World War II Ukrainian fascist leader Stepan Bandera, took part in the coup as well as in the ongoing war against Lugansk and Donetsk. 

A Matter of ‘Life or Death’ 

The Russian military action follows demands made in December by Russia to the U.S. and NATO in the form of treaty proposals that would require Ukraine and Georgia not to join NATO; U.S. missiles in Poland and Romania to be removed; and NATO deployments to Eastern Europe reversed. 

The U.S. and NATO rejected the proposals and instead sent more NATO forces to Eastern Europe and have been heavily arming Ukraine.

In his address on Thursday morning, Putin said the military operation he was launching was a “question of life or death” for Russia, referring to NATO’s expansion east since the late 1990s. He said:

“For the United States and its allies, it is a policy of containing Russia, with obvious geopolitical dividends. For our country, it is a matter of life and death, a matter of our historical future as a nation. This is not an exaggeration; this is a fact. It is not only a very real threat to our interests but to the very existence of our state and to its sovereignty. It is the red line which we have spoken about on numerous occasions. They have crossed it.”

Detailed Explanation of Causes and Aims of Operation

Silets Sokalskyi Lvivska battlefield monument in Ukraine of Soviets soldiers against Nazi invaders. (Viacheslav Galievskyi/Wikimedia Commons)

In his 3,350-word speech, Putin laid out in full detail the reasons he decided to take military action and what he hopes it will achieve. The speech is a devastating critique of U.S. policy toward Russia over the past 30 years, which no doubt will fall on deaf ears in Washington. 

Western media is so far ignoring the speech or superficially dismissing it. But it has to be carefully studied if anyone is interested in understanding why Russia launched this military operation. Just calling Putin “Hitler,” as Nancy Pelosi did Wednesday night, won’t do. 

Hitler in fact features in Putin’s address. For instance, addressing the Ukrainian military, Putin said:

“Your fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers did not fight the Nazi occupiers and did not defend our common Motherland to allow today’s neo-Nazis to seize power in Ukraine. You swore the oath of allegiance to the Ukrainian people and not to the junta, the people’s adversary which is plundering Ukraine and humiliating the Ukrainian people.”

He linked the Nazis’ invasion of Russia to NATO’s threat today, saying this time there would be no appeasement:

“Of course, this situation begs a question: what next, what are we to expect? If history is any guide, we know that in 1940 and early 1941 the Soviet Union went to great lengths to prevent war or at least delay its outbreak. To this end, the USSR sought not to provoke the potential aggressor until the very end by refraining or postponing the most urgent and obvious preparations it had to make to defend itself from an imminent attack. When it finally acted, it was too late.

As a result, the country was not prepared to counter the invasion by Nazi Germany, which attacked our Motherland on June 22, 1941, without declaring war. The country stopped the enemy and went on to defeat it, but this came at a tremendous cost. The attempt to appease the aggressor ahead of the Great Patriotic War proved to be a mistake which came at a high cost for our people. In the first months after the hostilities broke out, we lost vast territories of strategic importance, as well as millions of lives. We will not make this mistake the second time. We have no right to do so.”

Putin said the existential threat from NATO’s expansion was the main reason for military action:  

“Our biggest concerns and worries, [are] the fundamental threats which irresponsible Western politicians created for Russia consistently, rudely and unceremoniously from year to year. I am referring to the eastward expansion of NATO, which is moving its military infrastructure ever closer to the Russian border.

It is a fact that over the past 30 years we have been patiently trying to come to an agreement with the leading NATO countries regarding the principles of equal and indivisible security in Europe. In response to our proposals, we invariably faced either cynical deception and lies or attempts at pressure and blackmail, while the North Atlantic alliance continued to expand despite our protests and concerns. Its military machine is moving and, as I said, is approaching our very border.

Why is this happening? Where did this insolent manner of talking down from the height of their exceptionalism, infallibility and all-permissiveness come from? What is the explanation for this contemptuous and disdainful attitude to our interests and absolutely legitimate demands?”

 Putin called the Americans “con-artists” for lying about NATO expansion. He referred to:

“promises not to expand NATO eastwards even by an inch. To reiterate: they have deceived us, or, to put it simply, they have played us. Sure, one often hears that politics is a dirty business. It could be, but it shouldn’t be as dirty as it is now, not to such an extent. This type of con-artist behaviour is contrary not only to the principles of international relations but also and above all to the generally accepted norms of morality and ethics.”

Putin said Russia had long wanted to cooperate with the West. “Those who aspire to global dominance have publicly designated Russia as their enemy. They did so with impunity. Make no mistake, they had no reason to act this way,” he said.

Cold War Triumphalism & Its Consequences

U.S. soldier conducts search of family’s home in Iraq, 2006. (Navy Journalist 1st Class Jeremy L. Wood)

Putin said the collapse of the Soviet Union had led to a redivision of the world and a change to international law and norms.  New rules were needed but instead of achieving this

“professionally, smoothly, patiently, and with due regard and respect for the interests of all states … we saw a state of euphoria created by the feeling of absolute superiority, a kind of modern absolutism coupled with the low cultural standards and arrogance of those who formulated and pushed through decisions that suited only themselves.”

Putin then said this “absolutism,” with the Soviet Union no longer as a barrier, led to unchecked U.S. aggression, starting with NATO’s bombing of Serbia in 1999, the 2003 invasion of Iraq and U.S. involvement in Syria. Russia has been taking note of the destruction Washington has wrought, even as it seems whitewashed from American minds.

“First a bloody military operation was waged against Belgrade, without the UN Security Council’s sanction but with combat aircraft and missiles used in the heart of Europe. The bombing of peaceful cities and vital infrastructure went on for several weeks. I have to recall these facts, because some Western colleagues prefer to forget them, and when we mentioned the event, they prefer to avoid speaking about international law. 

Then came the turn of Iraq, Libya and Syria. The illegal use of military power against Libya and the distortion of all the UN Security Council decisions on Libya ruined the state, created a huge seat of international terrorism, and pushed the country towards a humanitarian catastrophe, into the vortex of a civil war, which has continued there for years. The tragedy, which was created for hundreds of thousands and even millions of people not only in Libya but in the whole region, has led to a large-scale exodus from the Middle East and North Africa to Europe.

A similar fate was also prepared for Syria. The combat operations conducted by the Western coalition in that country without the Syrian government’s approval or UN Security Council’s sanction can only be defined as aggression and intervention.

But the example that stands apart from the above events is, of course, the invasion of Iraq without any legal grounds. They used the pretext of allegedly reliable information available in the United States about the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. To prove that allegation, the US Secretary of State held up a vial with white power, publicly, for the whole world to see, assuring the international community that it was a chemical warfare agent created in Iraq.

It later turned out that all of that was a fake and a sham, and that Iraq did not have any chemical weapons. Incredible and shocking but true. We witnessed lies made at the highest state level and voiced from the high UN rostrum. As a result we see a tremendous loss in human life, damage, destruction, and a colossal upsurge of terrorism.

Overall, it appears that nearly everywhere, in many regions of the world where the United States brought its law and order, this created bloody, non-healing wounds and the curse of international terrorism and extremism.”

Putin said over the past days “NATO leadership has been blunt in its statements that they need to accelerate and step up efforts to bring the alliance’s infrastructure closer to Russia’s borders. In other words, they have been toughening their position. We cannot stay idle and passively observe these developments. This would be an absolutely irresponsible thing to do for us.”

Ukraine, he said, had essentially become a de-facto NATO member posing the greatest threat to Russia.

“Any further expansion of the North Atlantic alliance’s infrastructure or the ongoing efforts to gain a military foothold of the Ukrainian territory are unacceptable for us. Of course, the question is not about NATO itself. It merely serves as a tool of US foreign policy. The problem is that in territories adjacent to Russia, which I have to note is our historical land, a hostile “anti-Russia” is taking shape. Fully controlled from the outside, it is doing everything to attract NATO armed forces and obtain cutting-edge weapons.”

A Parting Shot at European Vassals

Putin also blasted America’s European allies for not having the strength of principle or the moral fiber to stand up to Washington. He said:

“The United States is still a great country and a system-forming power. All its satellites not only humbly and obediently say yes to and parrot it at the slightest pretext but also imitate its behaviour and enthusiastically accept the rules it is offering them. Therefore, one can say with good reason and confidence that the whole so-called Western bloc formed by the United States in its own image and likeness is, in its entirety, the very same ’empire of lies.’”

[Read the full text of the speech.] [Kremlin and other Russian government websites are down after apparent cyber attack. The full text of the speech can be found on Bloomberg News here.]

Joe Lauria is editor-in-chief of Consortium News and a former U.N. correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, and other newspapers, including The Montreal Gazette, the London Daily Mail and The Star of Johannesburg. He was an investigative reporter for the Sunday Times of London, a financial reporter for Bloomberg News and began his professional work as a 19-year old stringer for The New York Times. He is the author of two books, A Political Odyssey, with Sen. Mike Gravel, foreword by Daniel Ellsberg; and How I Lost By Hillary Clinton, foreword by Julian Assange. He can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @unjoe

23 comments for “Why Putin Went to War

  1. Lois Gagnon
    February 26, 2024 at 13:52

    I found this article very convincing on who Putin is really fighting in Ukraine. The Straussians.


  2. Realist
    February 26, 2024 at 05:59

    Left to its own devices, Ukraine would have lost this war, that it started with a coup de etat in 2014 followed by 8 years of daily provocations of Russia including tens of thousands of killings in the Donbas, a year and a half ago already. The futile slaughter of Ukrainians goes on only because it is really the US and Nato that are the actual provocateurs and belligerents against Russia. This unified “West” provides every bit of support money, intelligence, and armaments used in the conflict. It even pays to run the government and feed the people. Ukraine supplies only the live bodies doing all the dying in the process. It is really specious to say that the West is merely supporting Ukraine in its war v. Russia. The more accurate description would be to say that Ukraine is assisting the West by providing the canon fodder to do nearly all the bleeding and dying. The West, more accurately the US, gives all the orders. The Ukies do what they are told–thankfully not very well, because imagine how massive the death toll would be if they excelled at making America’s war. Ukie instructions come from the mouth of an American anointed puppet whom the lackeys in the Western media have puffed up to the stature of Winston Churchill during the second world war–at least this is how they and the American public view this fraudulent and mercenary weasel who is not an ethnic Ukrainian, nor even able to speak Ukrainian as he spouted anti-war platitudes throughout his presidential campaign. Also, truth be told, he seemed not to have a rabid hunger for the battlefield from the very onset of the fighting, preferring instead to end the conflict quickly at the negotiating table with Putin. The two of them, in fact, had all the necessary “give and take” worked out and signed off upon… that is until Genocide Joe’s bag man, British PM Boris Johnson, convinced the modern-day Jewish Churchill of Nazi Ukraine that trading human lives for guns and money was a far better deal. And, that remains the actual real position of the entire West on this matter to this very moment. How can it be otherwise, when Genocidal Joe has never stopped saying that the US and Nato will back the Ukraine suicide machine till the war is “won” against a Russia that still increases its every advantage on the battlefield daily, without interruption, and, truth be told, can simply not afford to lose this war and return to the suffering and ignominy of Russia under the sadistic and exploitative American thumb, a time when the entire society was collapsing under the wayward leadership of a thoroughly dissolute Boris Yeltsin, a time when poverty and death rates were sky high, and a coterie of predatory oligarchs–including many from foreign lands–invaded the country and robbed it blind of its resources. The Russian population knows damned well that they simply cannot allow the tide of battle to ever turn against them, as the United States is simply too vicious and rapacious in any superior relationship it establishes with Russia. That is Russia’s incentive to refuse to lose this conflict with the US and Nato. What is Ukraine’s incentive to win? They agreed to assist Uncle Sam as a pawn in a proxy war. They were acting out of greed and only dishonored themselves. They thought they were merely playing their usual role as the most corrupt country in all of Europe. I tell you these are very weak incentives. Most everything that comes out of Zelensky’s mouth these days is just a lot of preposterous malarkey. Lately he seems occupied with planning some political feint to confuse the growing political faction that wants him gone and probably preferably dead. What else could the reshuffle of the entire military high command (which the rank and file supports–moreso than him!) be about? There is nothing surprising about any of this, coming from such a corrupt den of petty thieves (petty in their aspirations, actually pretty outrageous in the amount of booty they routinely loot from that forsaken country). To think that Genocide Joe’s fondest wish right now is to extract yet another $61-billion to continue propping up that gang of thugs. Heaven forbid that he gets any of that money. He’s just stealing it from us taxpayers, everyone must know. Not just the Ukies, but the Congress and the MIC are all habituated to that money, like a crack addict is to cocaine. To dispense real justice to everyone involved in this mad endeavor (including the Ukies, the Russkies, the American taxpayers, all governments and all militaries with even just their toe in the water) Congress must close the tap and stop the flow of money to the corrupt regime in Kiev, just as we finally ended the war in Vietnam. Ukraine is gonna have to collapse, re-assort itself and rebuild. Lots of countries in Brics and the Global South will have money to invest in a rebuild, especially without a rapacious US looking for smaller, weaker countries to prey upon. The USA is functionally bankrupt. It should be advised to repair its own economy rather than squander more treasure on dreams of conquest. It should try to find some leadership not born in the Boomer cohort–for the first time since Bill Clinton, 32 years ago.

    • Eddie S
      February 26, 2024 at 13:20

      Nailed it!

  3. D'Esterre
    February 26, 2024 at 00:40

    We have family and extended family connections to that part of the world. The citizens – especially the children – of the Donbass have never done anything to NZ (or to any other polity), yet here our NZ government is, giving assistance to the régime which has been persecuting them since 2014. The same applies to every other polity which is aiding Kiev.

    To those of my fellow NZ citizens, who have difficulty in understanding what’s been happening there, I have offered the following thought experiment.

    Imagine that there’d been a fascist coup, supported by the US, in Wellington. Imagine, further, that following an atrocity committed in (for instance) Auckland, by coup supporters, the South Island declared independence from the rest of NZ (this entire country was at one time a colony of NSW, Australia). And Stewart Island had already voted to return to Australia. Then the régime in Wellington had spent the next several years attacking SI cities and towns, with catastrophic casualty numbers. That’s pretty much what’s been happening in the Donbass.

    People my age will remember from the 1970s the talk of South Island secession from NZ. It didn’t happen, but the scenario is readily understood by those of us who were young adults at that time.

    In truth, it requires a leap of the imagination to see Australia as independent from the US, but even so….

    We also have family in Central Europe. One of them recently said to us, “Putin is crazy”. This is evidently the level of political discourse in their country. That perspective illustrates that they have absolutely no idea what’s going on in the Ukraine.

    I was angry at it: these family members live within bowshot of the awful events in Serbia in the 1990s. And the Ukraine isn’t so very far away, either. In my view, it behoves them to be much better-informed than they evidently are, most especially given the fact that there are land borders only in that area. It isn’t impossible to know what’s happening: we do. We just don’t get our news from the msm.

  4. Eddie S
    February 25, 2024 at 21:46

    Thanks for reprinting this very informative article Joe!

  5. Drew Hunkins
    February 25, 2024 at 17:09

    Putin had no choice. The Western imperialists have for centuries periodically invaded Russia. This time Putin nipped the operation in the bud before it really gained steam.

    The Nulands, Blinkens, Little Benny Shapiros, and Kristols and others with historical grudges against Russia can take their neurosis and incredible recklessness elsewhere.

    The militarist contractors and Pentagon flacks who desire an enemy to justify their profit gouging and careerist delusions can go take a hike.

    The Wall Street robber barons and Fortune 500 corporations who want more than anything to exploit the heII out of Russia’s vast resources like it’s a 1990s redux must be shown the door.

    Russia’s borders were being harassed non-stop during the 20 teens, ethnic Russians were being killed, about 14K over eight years. Putin did the 100% righteous thing in launching the SMO. It very likely could save the world from nuclear Armageddon.

  6. John Zeigler
    February 25, 2024 at 15:26

    Lies all around. The most recent names that come to mind are Assange and Navalny. If one is looking for clean hands, then look elsewhere than Washington or Moscow. Meanwhile, Ukraine is the whipping boy.

  7. Hank
    February 25, 2024 at 13:38

    Incredible how much the world has changed. In the 2 years since this occurred, the global south has found its confidence to start a wave of anti-neocolonial actions in Africa, not to mention the resistance in West Asia that has only begun. Putin unveiled a statue of Fidel in Moscow, despite being himself a Christian Conservative. The aftermath of the start of the SMO was the last moment of Western self-congratulatory righteous indignation. Any modicum of legitimacy is gone. To quote Dr Wilmer Leon the world has been bombed into reality. The reality that people who are at this moment struggling to put food on the table in Europe, or The United-States, the Ukrainians dying in a war that should have never started, the Palestinians being murdered, the Taiwanese wondering if their future is secure, are all victims to varying degrees of a system that is not just unjust, but genocidal. An anachronism that belongs in the dustbin of history. Young people today who are being force fed the black pill of doom need hope for renewal, and it is not going to come from the West.

  8. Martin
    February 25, 2024 at 07:39

    you’d have to back up the statements concerning putin’s ‘deceptions’. i agree that the west’s major ‘tactic’ has been to ignore the positions and arguments of their counterparts and feign deafness. the inventory of unaddressed events, facts and arguments is huge. imo, there’s no comparing credibility ratings of the west and russia (different league).

  9. Francis Lee
    February 25, 2024 at 04:31

    Fascism in Ukraine has a long and omnipresent history which is embodied in the present. See below.

    During the 1920s, the Ukrainian political publicist Dmytro Dontsov (1883–1973) created “active nationalism,” a political doctrine that later became the ideology of the radical right-wing Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists which morphed into the (OUN-B – Bandera) and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA – Shukeyvich). Yet, before World War I, Dontsov was, like Mussolini, a fervently internationalist social democrat.

    Much of Dontsov’s shift rightward occurred during the internecine fighting that beset Ukraine from 1914 to 1922, but he had already adumbrated key components of his mature, “integral nationalist” world view prior to this time, from a vantage point well within the mainstream of the day’s social-democratic discourse. His incendiary brand of Ukrainian realpolitik used the language of an early twentieth-century Marxism that had become riddled with various “heterodoxies.” Anticipating a world conflict that would favor the Germans and dismantle the Russian Empire, Dontsov advocated a pro- “Western,” anti-“Muscovite” orientation for Ukrainians, and in 1913 spearheaded a controversial program for Ukraine’s separation from Russia and integration into “Europe.”

    This formed the background of militant protofascist organizations (see above) who carried out several brutal ethnic cleansing episodes whilst the Wehrmacht SS units (whose antisemitism was if anything even worse, simply looked on). The Polish community in the Western Ukraine was centred around Volhynia, Galicia and its environs. One particularly gruesome episode by the duo of Bandera and Shukhevych took place in 1943 when up to 100,000 Poles as well as Jews and Russians were butchered.
    So, the track record of Ukrainian nationalists has always been anti-Russian, anti-semitic, anti-democratic, and anti-Polish. And suffice it to say, they can’t seem to simply kick the habit. The sooner or later this ideological monster collapses the better.

  10. b
    February 24, 2024 at 18:16

    Putin’s initial motives remain key to appraisals of the West, but results might derive what Russia may be driven to do. I wonder particularly about the logistics of de-Nazification.

    Given the West’s persistent romance with violence and violent factions, ongoing NATO support for Nazis on some level is assured. In addition, war and poverty will push remaining populations into more radical camps. So any Ukrainian state will remain at least quasi-Nazi.

    In most circumstances, a nation might submit rather than be destroyed. But the West will see Ukraine destroyed with barely a shrug. The Biden administration already calls the fiasco “cheap.”

    Putin would rather not govern western Ukraine, and likely Russia in general would not either. But where’s the off ramp here, with so many treaties ignored or broken?

    • Patrick Powers
      February 25, 2024 at 00:35

      ‘Tis a puzzlement. Russia occupying all of Ukraine is not a possibility. I’ll let Lavrov figure it out.

  11. PeeF
    February 24, 2024 at 10:55

    het Westen heeft in ieder geval één doel bereikt: een vijand maken die 3 jaar geleden geen vijand was

    • Randal Marlin
      February 24, 2024 at 18:05

      With my limited Dutch and help from Google, I take this to mean: “The West has in any case an achievement, making an enemy that wasn’t an enemy three years ago.”

      • Patrick Powers
        February 25, 2024 at 00:37

        The military requires enemies. If there are none it will make them.

        • robert e williamson jr
          February 25, 2024 at 20:43

          The CIA and the U.S. Intelligence Apparatus, magically, through the State Department, create the enemies, the military engages in advice, advises logistics ,political advice, Et cetera and high paid contractors reap the benefits.

          The Dutch contributor simply states their correct observation and analysis of the events.

          But yes, you damned sure have the idea.

  12. Henry Steen
    February 24, 2024 at 10:54

    Refreshing to see this article again. Putin was calmniated and ridiculed at the time, but he was just about spot on.

  13. Randal Marlin
    February 24, 2024 at 10:51

    The extracts from Putin’s speech are a very good and important reminder of historical truths needed for a proper understanding of Russia’s grievances and apprehensions regarding NATO and the West.
    One obstacle against ready acceptance of his account is that Putin denied at one time that his military preparations in Belarus were a prelude to invading Ukraine. He also denied what the “green men” were up to, then admitted having lied after the deception accomplished its purpose.
    In other words, Putin’s credibility rating is not high. Too many things he says are not credible.
    That said, the extracts you select seem to me true and important. It’s just that getting people to pay proper attention to them will be difficult.
    Of course, I would share Seymour Hersh’s skepticism regarding statements from official Washington, which also fare poorly on the veracity scale! At least the West has national archives that can be accessed and trusted. I wonder for how long.

    • Paul
      February 24, 2024 at 22:49

      You said: ” Putin denied at one time that his military preparations in Belarus were a prelude to invading Ukraine. He also denied what the “green men” were up to, then admitted having lied after the deception accomplished its purpose…
      War is war. Do you want me to remind you how many times west cheated Russia? You want Putin to play an honest game against the cheaters?

    • anaisanesse
      February 25, 2024 at 02:04

      “In other words, Putin’s credibility rating is not high. Too many things he says are not credible.” Sorry, Randal. We now have so many years of his speeches and interviews. I do not think these examples are in any way demonstrations of Putin’s lack of honesty.

    • TimeAndTide
      February 25, 2024 at 04:28

      “At least the West has national archives that can be accessed and trusted.”

      That is the belief of some, particularly that they can be accessed by some whilst sometimes being “the truth”, but not “the whole truth” and “nothing by the truth” thereby forming part of “The American Dream”, “secrecy” being a function of time and facility facilitating fishing expeditions using various lines, sometimes deemed by some as “propaganda”, and by others as “perception management” attempts.

  14. Altopol
    February 24, 2024 at 10:48

    The filthy western propaganda knows no bound.

    Applying the Nuremberg Tribunal Laws today the collective west would find itself guilty on all count.

    • Patrick Powers
      February 25, 2024 at 00:35

      Hypocrisy Is Strength.

Comments are closed.