These two interconnected decisions make clear New Zealand’s position to support the Kiev government, a regime which is unequivocally militarily and politically supported by neonazi groups like the Azov and Aidar battalions and political groups like the Right Sector, and which for 8 years has been shelling and killing more than 10,000 innocent Ukrainian people in the Donbas simply because they want to speak their native language, Russian (note that these figures are confirmed by the Organisation for Security in Europe (OSCE)
New Zealand equipment and targeting information is undoubtedly also being used by the Kiev military to continue to fire missiles at Donetsk City and its civilian infrastructure.
While the Russian invasion of Ukraine is to be unequivocally condemned, a path to peace must be negotiated which dispassionately examines the reasons for this war and Western governments’ refusal to honour the Minsk agreements signed by Kiev, which would have meant the Russian invasion would never have happened.
While previous Labour administrations like David Lange’s and Norman Kirk’s had the moral courage to push back against the NATO white mans’ club, which continue to drone murder, torture and initiate wars against those who do not wish to ‘compulsorily share’ their resources with the Western world, this Ardern government has cemented its relationship as a NATO ‘ally’ and a key member of the Five Eyes group and continues to enthusiastically facilitate those illegal and immoral activities.
One would have that thought that those who have been victims of white man’s colonialism would have taken some courage and initiative to distance New Zealand from these activities of the white man’s club. New Zealand is, and will increasingly become a pariah state in the South and East while it maintains it enthusiastic support for NATO and the current ‘international rule based order’, which every non Western state recognises as code for the right for the US and its allies to do whatever it wishes , including sanctions, targetted killings and extreme violence against whole populations. Does not the current Labour government have the courage to push back against this ever expanding and dangerous war that NATO is fuelling at the expense of likely hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers, and demand that each side sit down to negotiate firstly a cease-fire and then a peace agreement which is endorsed at the UN?
I sincerely hope that this Labour Government does belatedly recognise that New Zealand’s international and defense policies and actions are currently not on the moral side of rectitude.
Postscript 6th November 2022
The Telegram channel Rybar made the following post on 5th November.
#Ukrainian #Nazi group, within Azov Movement, Karpatska Sich, translated to Ukrainian the New Zealand shooter Manifesto that inspired the #Buffalo White Supremacist shooter.
The Ukrainian-language translation of the Christchurch shooter’s manifesto, flanked by a sticker for Ukrainian neo-Nazi group Karpatska Sich.
The New Zealand shooter Manifesto that inspired the #Buffalo shooter is a “must read” for all #NeoNazis and White Supremacists worldwide. Here a group of #Ukrainian #Nazis from Karpatska Sich holding copies of the book translated to Ukrainian by the Nazi elitist group inside #Azov movement.
Neo Nazi Polish/Ukrainian group Karpatska Sich made a hateful video regarding the Pride marches in the EU the year.
In other words, the New Zealand government’s military is funding, training and likely imbedded with neonazis in Ukraine who are directly implicated in the New Zealand mosque shooting in Christchurch in 2019, which the same NZ government has roundly condemned as a terrorist act.
Exactly how that is the case is not made clear, and why he would be so publicly supposedly removed from office is unexplained, but apparently any opportunity to demean and deride the Chinese Communist party by the West is a good opportunity. But why should that be so?
We are told that Xi Jinping is ‘ruthlessly’ consolidating his power by appointing more of his supporters to his decision-making circle, (something of course that Western politicians never ever do!) after the Chinese Communist Party Congress (representing its 96.71 million members) were somehow intimidated into once again electing the dictator Xi Jingping for a third consecutive term!
And we are told by Western media that China has a ‘very aggressive’ foreign policy. Strangely this view is not reflected by most of the nations of the South, many of whom have benefitted enormously from China’s technical expertise and support for their infrastructure development – in sharp contrast to the predatory practices of the United States and its IMF and World Bank proxies, of dismantling economically vulnerable states for the benefit of American corporations.
The Chinese ‘threat’ therefore is that the long-standing predatory actions of the United States and its Western white allies (what the West likes to call the ‘rule-based order) are under threat.
The pretence is that these actions by the US are designed to impede China’s military aggressive actions. They are in fact designed to ensure China stays a subservient power to the US, economically and militarily. Charles Freeman (ex US diplomat) states it bluntly: ‘This is the equivalent of smoking pot in a hot tub and fantasizing about tripping up competitors in track events, while they are out training and trying out new equipment. It’s conceivable that China will stumble and fall, enabling us effortlessly to “win the future,” but it is imbecilic to count on this. Delusional complacency and reliance on dumb luck or divine intervention will not enable us to outperform China or any other rising power.
And as Counterpunch notes:‘Biden and the Post are talking about a country [China] that has not used military force outside its borders for more than 40 years, and has only one military facility [Djibouti] outside its zone of influence.’. Contrast that with the West’s brutal wars in the last 40 years in Iraq, Syria, and Libya- let alone its unwavering support for Israel’s slow genocide of the Palestinian people or the U.S.’s 750 plus military bases across the world.
Pelosi’s bizarre flight to Taiwan recently to stir up the Republic of China or ROC (colloquially known as ‘Taiwan’) into buying lots more American military equipment they didn’t know they needed, is just one more of many examples of attempts by the US to provoke mainland China so it can be further labelled in the Western (white) media as an aggressive dictatorship and thus not to be trusted. It is after all only the Western white media (and now Zelensky’s PR team) who speak “the truth”!!!
It would seem that those of us in the West are, not so slowly, being brainwashed by a Western media in lock-step with Western corporate ‘interests’ and their politicians, to believe that China and Russia are the evil ones against whom we must fight to the bitter end to maintain our ‘right’ to plunder the rest of the non-white world as we see fit.
And all the while, Gaia will have the last laugh on those petty human squabbles.
The South China Morning Post ( Hong Kong based and not state media ) reported that ‘The episode was not reported in Chinese state media but in its evening newscast on Saturday night state broadcaster CCTV included a shot of the former president voting at the closing ceremony before his exit’.
An erudite and sane perspective on the Ukraine war and international relations by Robert Falk (below)
And Chris Hedges’ beautiful but savage indictment of all war
All wars are, without doubt, pointless, tragic and foolish affairs that also play a significant part in destroying the remainder of our natural environment and a future for our children.
Western media are continuously playing a looped recording that Ukraine and its president Zelensky are defending the ‘free world’ – democratic ‘white” nations- against the evil Russian hordes. What is most interesting is that the language used in this messaging is consistent right across the Western media, regardless of the country you live in .
That the Kiev armies are undoubtedly shelling the former Ukrainian nuclear power plant near Zaporizhzhia: presumably to create more support for more weapons from the ‘white’ world.
That the Kiev government and its Western government supporters have been deliberately shelling civilian areas of the Donbass held by Russian speaking Ukrainians since 2014 , with over 14,000 deaths from shelling, and more recently with illegal ‘butterfly’ or ‘petal’ anti-personnel mines.
In the last few days we have also heard about the killing of the daughter of the ‘ultra-nationalist” Alexander Dugin. Dugin is, in my opinion, an obnoxious idealogue who has for many years promoted a Russia first meme. However nobody deserves to die because of their beliefs, (let alone their children) – be they Russian, Ukrainian or any other nationality.
What is however scary, is the identical use of language by Western media in describing Dugin as an ‘ultra-nationalist” – what exactly an ‘ultra-nationalist’ is, as opposed to simply being a ‘nationalist’, is somewhat unclear- but one is left with the clear understanding that only Russians can be ‘ultranationalists’ (or for that matter ‘oligarchs’) and never of course those Americans who have the ludicrous belief in the United States as the ‘exceptional nation’ who wanders the world doing good deeds for the benefit of those of us who are less enlightened.
Patriotism is one of the scourges of humanity; an absurd belief in the superiority of the culture and land to which you were accidentally born into. A scourge that blights and distorts the mind into believing that any action ; however intrinsically evil it is, is good as long as it benefits the country you were born in.
We see that evil in the blue and gold banners that enswathes everything in Ukraine, the United State’s ‘Stars and Stripes’, and the blue white and red flag of Russia, to name but three.
So now, as Westerners, we are told to hate all Russians, all Chinese, because they are a threat to our expensive lifestyles….And as true patriots, we should consume more, build more and destroy more , because we are the epitome of ‘civilisation’.
And all the while, we move ever faster into a new world where the climate is already more unpredictable and dangerous, where global warming and sea-levels continue to rise and rise for the next hundred, maybe thousand years, and where we ever more rapidly, destroy what is left of our living world.
And why?- because their media profit margins and their sponsors depend on more economic ‘growth’.
So it becomes clear that the only path to ‘de-growth’, and retaining some semblance of a live-able world for humans and other species, is one where Gaia herself creates that economic destruction.
When hurricanes, huge storms, enormous amounts of rainfall, oppressive high temperatures and sea level rise ( among many other ‘natural’ impacts), result in it being impossible to buy insurance for industry to sell your products or to have a market where people can no longer afford to buy your useless junk; only then will we start to see a return to a sustainable (but hotter) world where all species can live in harmony, and even some contentment!
Media have indoctrinated us all to believe that we need to consume more, do more, travel more – that we cannot live lives of contentment without all those things we need to buy and consume..
On June 26th Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s current prime minister, admitted in a TV interview, that New Zealand had been a NATO ‘partner’ -not member (as Ukraine also is) for the past 10 years. The interview was undertaken while Ardern was travelling to make a brief presentation to a NATO meeting in Spain, currently discussing how they can mitigate the Western disaster in Ukraine where Russian and Ukrainian ‘separatists’ are bulldozing through the remnants of Kiev’s army in the Donbass .
Given the admission from Ardern that New Zealand has been a NATO partner for the past 10 years, and has also been part of the Five Eyes alliance since 1956, we are thus a co-conspirator to the Minsk 1 and 2 subterfuges of 2014 and 2015 by Western nations in their pretense to the Donbass residents that a Ukrainian semi-autonomous region for the Russian speakers there was going to happen, and Kiev would stop bombarding Donetsk and Lugansk. New Zealand is also party to the provision of military equipment to the Kiev ‘regime’ (certainly not a ‘democracy’ now that almost all political parties other than Zelensky’s have been banned) which have been used to deliberately target civilian populations in Donetsk city in the past few months.
However if one were to believe Western and New Zealand media, Russia is shelling its own allies in the Donbass!- or as some Kiev residents have liked to call it over the years- the ‘Bombass’.
But let us not over-estimate the intelligence of our (Western) world leaders either!…
For New Zealand to pretend it is not at war with Russia is absurd. New Zealand is aiding its Western ‘allies’ to ensure that as many Ukrainians die for nothing in a war that could easily have been avoided if the West had insisted that Kiev abide by the Minsk agreements it signed in 2014 and not re-armed Kiev and its neonazi groups.
And let us not forget the colossal destruction this war is wreaking on the environment and the staggering amount of human resources wasted building weapons that could have been used to plant trees, and build a sustainable world….Or forget the increasing probability of a ‘hot’ war between Western white countries and China and Russia, which would likely then lead us all to nuclear armageddon.
Recently the U.S. orchestrated yet another Pacific military alliance between the U.S., Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK., strangely titled ‘Partners in the Blue Pacific’ whose purpose is to operate, the U.S. says “according to principles of Pacific regionalism, sovereignty, transparency, accountability, and most of all, [will be] led and guided by the Pacific islands.”. (Strangely those Pacific Island nations are not actually party to this agreement! )
This comes on top of the other new Indo-Pacific military ‘white folks’ agreement signed between Australia the United States and the U.K.; entitled AUKUS, which is intended to break the Pacific nuclear free agreement signed by most Pacific Island nations.
China has recently had the temerity to sign economic and security deals (not military bases) with a number of pacific island countries. If you believed NZ and Australian media and government lurid pronouncements, the ‘red peril’ is once again on the march to take away our democracy and freedom!
Presumably it’s the freedom to colonise vulnerable south pacific countries, to threaten and blackmail governments in the region, and to exploit Pacific Island communities using their cheap labour – dastardly Chinese stuff to try and limit us “good white folks'” exploitative opportunities in the Pacific !
Denis Argall notes from an Australian perspective that ‘the United States is entering into a period of instability at home and overreach abroad. The US’s declared intent to use the Ukraine war to diminish Russia is neither healthy nor attainable. The US provocation of war with China is contrary to our interests as well as common sense’.
The great Sam Cooke’s beautiful and visionary song ‘A Change Gonna Come’ epitomises the tipping point of a global transition we are now living through.
It seems astonishing that it cannot be understood that, as with individual’s power and influence, so too do nations rise and fall; from luck and opportunity -rarely from great leaders, and certainly never from the superiority of ‘race’.
It should be noted that the concept of human ‘races’ dates from deliberate misinterpretations of genetic theory.
The genetic variations between different human populations are so small that differing individual aptitudes of ‘intelligence’ -a quality entirely defined by culture and environments which either support or diminishes their mental and physical opportunities. Racial superiority is therefore a completely foolish myth used by those who wish to manipulate others for their own nefarious purposes.
A superb modern example of this cartoon-like myth of genetic superiority can be seen in this ‘white” ( more appropriately termed ‘pink’) supremacy painting circulated by one Carl Bildt – a former prime minister of Sweden and who one would have presumed to be an ‘intelligent’ man- alas not.
The painting depicts ‘racially superior’ Western Ukrainian Knights (descended from ‘Aryan’ Vikings in their myths) heroically destroying the evil Russian ‘orcs’ ( who are apparently ‘genetically inferior’ Asians , according to those same myths.)
The Russian invasion of Ukraine is to be condemned- as is any violence directed against another country or peoples, but likewise, so are the actions of the Kiev government army in Donbass , killing its own population since 2014. There is good evidence to suggest that Western European countries and the U.S. actively encouraged , financed and weaponised the Kiev government to fight the Russian speaking Donbass ‘separatists’ for 8 years, and ignore the Minsk agreements Kiev had signed up to- agreements that would have restored peace to Ukraine.
Perhaps Carl Bildt’s tweet is one clue to the West’s determination to ensure a war between Russia and Ukraine.
And we can see racial prejudice in the extreme brutality against the Korean people in the Korean war ( what can only be called genocide)– a war between Europeanised countries supporting a brutal dictatorship in South Korea against a nationalist Korean communist army in the North supported by the Chinese and Russians.
Or perhaps we can see it in the savagery Western armies fought against a Vietnamese army trying to restore their country’s independence. Or the obliteration by the U.S. of an almost defenceless Iraqi army and Iraqi civilian infrastructure ( a society battered to its knees by remorseless evil sanctions that killed half a million Iraqi children to the apparent delight of that much esteemed U.S. stateswoman Madeline Albright) prior to the Iraq war.
Or perhaps in Libya, where Libyan society was obliterated by Western powers in a mad grab for its oil. Or the well-documented use of jihadists in Syria by Western governments attempting to overthrow the Damascus government. Or the unconditional U.S. and U.K. support of Israeli European ‘settlers’ who have steadily continued to violently steal the lands of those ‘dirty Arabs’ in Palestine for the past 74 years.
And shall we remember the barbarous futility of the war in Afghanistan?- where the United States continues to believe it has the right to steal Afghan state bank money ( along with the theft of Venezuelan government and Russian state funds)
And we do not need to go back more than a century to know about the complete lack of morality of European and United States colonial troops or their proxies in Africa, India, South America or the Philippines.
We are talking about centuries of barbaric ‘white ‘ conquest and exploitation of most of the globe by force. And now, the times they are a changing.
With Russia being forced to turn East because of Western sanctions, and China now a very much an ascendant super-power, previously ‘third-world’ countries are beginning to asset themselves in the face of Western blackmail, bribery and military coercion.
Pacific nations are well aware of the bizarre racist viciousness from the whole Australian political spectrum against refugees and migrants, or indeed the decades long exploitation of seasonal Pasifika workers who harvest crops in Queensland and New Zealand.
Western media portrays these agreements with China as threats to the ‘rule based order’: the United States’ unilateral and often erratic and nonsensical set of decisions to exploit other countries, (‘rules’ much quoted by New Zealand’s Jacinda Adern), on what other countries should do unless they want to be threatened militarily, rather than an extension of China’s mutual trade agreements to supplement her hugely ambitious Belt and Road commerce initiative across the globe.
As has been often noted, China has one foreign military base, while the United States has at last count, 800 overseas military bases; all designed to intimidate at least one other country, or to intimidate the very country in which the military base is itself located, to follow the ‘rules’.
China has never been a colonial power. However, let us not be fooled into thinking that just because a currently weaker or emerging country does not as yet display the barbarity of the current ascendant countries (like the U.S. and U.K.) that does not mean that those arising powers will not descend into the same myopic and racist stupidity of thinking that they are somehow the exceptional nation, somehow always bound for glory.
Racism is not the distinct province of ‘white’ people, as those who were brutalised by the Japanese in the Second World War well remember.
All nations, when they ‘ascend’ to a position of power and global influence, are wont to believe in the fantasy that they are somehow naturally superior to others.
But we are definitively all equal as human beings.
My hope is that some time in the not too distant future, we realise that all other species are our equals too. Different skills, different attributes, but equal. Without that realisation we humans will continue to exploit this world until the natural world collapses around us – perhaps at that point we may realise we are an intrinsic and inseparable part of that natural world and that we need to cooperate – not destroy.
As two of the world’s ‘superpowers’ fight it out in Ukraine for the spoils of war, the world descends into a dystopian whirlpool of economic stagflation and environmental catastrophe.
While the Western propaganda war of obvious lies to its populations about the war in Ukraine is deeply disturbing, what is far far worse is the psychotic behaviour of all the world’s political classes in talking about the need to address climate change while doing the exact opposite- promoting ‘growth’, trying to revitalise tourist air travel, more production of goods, more industry..
The evidence is unequivocal; only a reduction and stabilization of human ‘growth’ will allow species on this planet to barely cope with the ongoing and now inevitable climate and ecocide we are experiencing. Promoting more growth is simply going to push us all faster off the cliff to a far deeper environmental catastrophe.
Sadly the Ukraine war has given us ample evidence of the concerted activity of Western media to consistently lie to its populations. The refusal to acknowledge the war of terror by the Kiev government on its Donbas population for 8 years since 2014 ( with 14,000 deaths), the refusal to acknowledge the existence of the well documented neo-nazi military groups working to eliminate Ukrainian Russian speakers (even while promoting videos made by them), or even the refusal to acknowledge that much of the fighting against Western Ukrainians is being carried out by Russian speaking Ukrainians from the Donbas against Western Ukrainians and the neonazis, are all examples of the subterfuge Western governments are required to commit to ensure a compliant population supports their war against Russia, while ignoring the horrors of Palestine’s slow genocide by Israel or the rapid genocide in Yemen by the Saudis, both enthusiastically supported by the U.S. and U.K.
My ‘favourite’ so far from New Zealand state tv , TVNZ, is their recent video clip of an interview with an elderly man in Donetsk (a Donbass city held by Russian speaking Ukrainians and constantly bombarded by Kiev’s troops since 2014) after shelling of his apartment building by the Western Ukrainians, while the commentator pretends the damage has been caused by Russian shelling.
When media have no compunction to consistently lie to get their ‘message’ across, one knows we have no hope of the media presenting an honest case about the desperate need for genuine action about climate change. We are instead presented with occasional short media articles about climate change, followed by a psychotic switch to the main propaganda barrage of ‘produce more, work more, buy more, sell more, fly more’. Greenwashing is now the ‘in thing’. Half-truths and pure lies infest our mainstream media.
Perhaps the one saving grace of our incompetent leaders is that they are, through their own incompetence, leading the world into a severe economic depression, which, together with the impacts of climate change, will inevitably reduce consumption and consequently allow some restoration of our natural world.
Sadly however that economic depression will lead to much suffering and many deaths. A planned and systematic approach to de-growth would have been a far more humane response.
Unfortunately , politicians’ and bureaucrats’ responses to the various crises enveloping the world is either to make war, or ‘grow’ economies more.
I would appreciate if you could publish the following letter
While any invasion of another country is deplorable and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is to be condemned, one needs to remember that prior to this invasion, more than 10,000 Russian speaking Ukrainians have been killed by the Kiev government in the Donbass since 2014; predominantly by neo-nazi groups like the Azov Battalion- the very same neonazi group that Brenton Tarrant , the Christchurch mosque shooter, was an ardent adherent of.
We should all be aware that truth is the first casualty of war, but the level of war hysteria and blatantly distorted propaganda we are seeing across the Western world about this tragedy in Ukraine, is extremely alarming- our media now howls for World War Three.
Our prime minister talks about how New Zealand supports the “rule based international order”; the U.S. imposed version of how they believe the world should be; not United Nation’s rules.
It is time to step back from the brink of a massive, potentially nuclear, war which would involve China Russia and its allies, and the Western camp.
Saner heads need to prevail; we need peace and an effective response to the imminent climate catastrophe unfolding, not this foolish provocation by New Zealand.
The conflict in Ukraine grinds on. The recent talks in Istanbul between Ukrainian Kiev representatives and the Russians indicated some small steps to a peaceful settlement.
However the largest stumbling block in the long-term (aside from further American military involvement in Ukraine after the war ends), is the de-nazification of Ukraine.
While Western media frequently displayed concern prior to 2014 of neo-nazi elements in Ukraine, we are now told that nazis are a figment in the imagination of the Russians- an excuse to invade Ukraine. However the history and evidence of neonazis in Ukraine is unequivocal, dating back to the Ukrainian nationalist movements of the late 19th century, where pride in a Ukrainian state was tied to Ukrainian slavic racial identity- unique (and vastly superior) to either Russians or Poles, and most certainly Jews and Gypsies.
The superiority of one or other of the ‘white’ races was an accepted and normative view of many Western populations and governments after Darwin’s “On the Origins of Species” was published in 1859. What else could explain the ease with which European and American forces could over-run, terrorise, enslave and loot countries in Asia, Africa and South America, if it was not that those races were ‘inferior’?
The Empires of Britain, Belgium, France, Holland and Germany and the United States’ colonies, were proof enough of the ‘white’ man’s superiority! A superiority, they reasoned that was timeless. The ‘science’ of eugenics allowed Western citizens to indulge in a fantasy world that explained and validated their brutality of other countries’ citizens.
The German physician and anthropologist Alfred Ploetz first laid out the major assumptions and definition of “racial hygiene” in his book, entitled “Foundations of a Eugenics” in 1895.
Many clinicians in the United States particularly became passionate eugenicists- eager to ensure that only the ‘purest’ survived. The film “Black Stork” of 1917 epitomises the eugenicist approach.
The current American view of the United States as the ‘exceptional nation’ continues to embody much of these bizarre prejudices.
Adolf Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’ book of 1925 simply piggy-backed on the flawed concepts of eugenics- creating an elaborate fantasy about the genetic superiority of the ‘genius’ Aryan race, of which the Germanic tribes were the ultimate and lesser ‘races’ could be exterminated.
In turn, Ukrainian nationalists seized on the ‘principles’ of eugenics and later the racial aspects of National Socialism (Nazism) as a way to ‘purify” Ukraine from the inferior ‘invader’ races; the Jews, Poles, Gypsies and Russians. The Ukrainian nationalist groups,; the OUN-B led by Stepan Bandera ( established in 1929) , and others vacillated between enthusiastically supporting the Nazis in their brutal occupation of Ukraine , and trying to create a Ukrainian state free of both the German Nazis, communists, Jews and Russian speakers.
While Stepan Bandera and many of the other Ukrainian nationalists were eliminated by the Soviet Union after the second world war, their dream of a ‘pure’ Ukraine lived on- largely in Canada in the significant Ukrainian diaspora there, and in the United States.
With the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1992, new opportunities for the Banderites and other Ukrainian nationalists arose, supported through discreet channels in the United States, British and likely Canadian intelligence communities as a way to undermine and dismantle Russia; (which continued to be seen as a potential threat to Western interests, despite no longer being communist).
Once the United States had enabled the Maidan coup in Kiev in 2014 and eliminated any possibility of Russian speaking eastern Ukrainians having a political voice in Ukraine, those extreme nationalist groups were able to consolidate their power, and their para-military groups were formally incorporated into the Ukrainian military’s structure.
The Azov and Aidar battalions particularly were thus able to access the vast amount of NATO weaponry pouring into the country after 2014. (Note that while Ukraine is not, and likely never will be , a NATO ‘member’, it is formally recognised as a NATO ‘ally’, and its military structures and weaponry are completely aligned with NATO structures).
While extreme nationalist parties have not been able to grab a significant proportion of the people’s votes in Ukrainian elections, their influence on the internal mechanics of the ruling political party, Zelensky’s “Servant of the People”, has been considerable. The Jewish and Russian-speaking Zelensky was voted in as Ukrainian President in 2019 on a platform of ending the war in Eastern Ukraine (the Donbass), but promptly had to reverse his position under threat from nationalist leaders.
The Ukrainian Army war (predominantly via the neo-nazi battalions) against the separatist Russian speakers in Eastern Ukraine- (the Donbass), thus dragged on for 8 years after 2014 ,with the loss of 14,000 lives- mainly Russian speakers in the Donbass.
Such sadistic and thuggish views have become endemic in Ukrainian society; particularly, but not exclusively in the Western regions of Ukraine. 8 years of white supremacist propaganda have done their work on the population.
Or perhaps this…
Not only has the Ukrainian population been propagandized into accepting Nazi ideology as ‘normal’ and acceptable in the face of the Russian threat, but Western media has, since the beginning of the war, been simultaneously pumping out denials of the existence of Nazis in Ukraine whilst showing videos of them in the war!
The level of hostility to all things Russian, along with a complete unwillingness to show a Russian perspective about the war in Western media, would indicate that the white Western world is at war with Russia in all but name.
Putin therefore must be depicted as a cartoon mad-man character whose lust for power has resulted in his deranged invasion of little Ukraine.
This does not mean that we should not condemn the Russian invasion in the strongest possible terms- we most certainly should.
But instead of attempting to re-arm the Ukrainians and prolong a dreadful war where millions have been displaced and thousands killed and wounded, we need to acknowledge the enormous threat that a re-energised nazi movement has; not just for Ukraine and Russia, and as Germany once again, re-arms, but for the world, and remove the possibility of a Nazi party ever coming to power again in the world.
We owe that to our children!
We are all humanly equal in this world; we may not all have the same experiences and opportunities in life- but we are indubitably equal and all worthy of kindness, love and respect.
In my ‘neck of the woods’ in New Zealand I am entertained each evening by the propaganda from TVNZ1 -one of our government funded TV channels. In their extensive coverage of the tragedy in Ukraine they somehow fail to mention:
That the Kiev government has been fighting a war with Eastern Ukrainians that they call ‘terrorists’ (or if you’re a neo-nazi, ‘cockroaches’) for 8 years with over 13,000 deaths with active support from NATO; and that Ukrainian shelling of civilian infrastructure in the Donbass is ongoing.
That British, American and German military ‘advisors’ have been training and providing ‘defensive’ weapons to these rabidly anti-Russian groups for those 8 years (and more) (note that there is militarily no such thing as a defensive weapon-anything that makes you safer in war also makes you more capable of fighting offensively)
That civilian casualty figures for the 12 days of war so far are astoundingly low ( 407 in 12 days), in comparison with say America’s ‘shock and awe’ terror campaign in Iraq ( 6,700 deaths in the first 3 weeks)– but noting that every death is a tragedy.
That all the while this hellish Ukraine war is going on, the Americans and the British are actively supporting a decidedly more hellish genocide in Yemen by the Saudis and other gulf states.
That the Russian Army and separatists from the Donbass have now encircled in a ‘cauldron’ the majority of the Ukrainian army in the East.
That the Russians claim to have found evidence of a number of American sponsored Ukrainian biolabs producing germ warfare agents, which the Americans both confess to and deny!
That the Russians claim to have found documental evidence of the Ukrainian Army’s intent to destroy the Donbass separatists in an offensive starting 25h February.
That the maternity hospital in Mariupal had been publicly identified by the Russians as having been turned into a Ukrainian military base 3 days before the shelling by the Russians of the building.
That the Western media’s constant pressure on the Americans and their European allies to implement Zelinsky’s plan for a NATO ‘no fly zone’ over Ukraine would result in shooting war that could easily end in nuclear war. (It would be like America having dog-fights and missile strikes over Canada or Mexico)
I guess TVNZ and the rest of the Western media are just trying to protect me from Russian propaganda- so I really feel quite relieved that I don’t need to know about any of this! Let’s keep it simple after all….
‘The first casualty when war comes is truth’. Hiram W Johnson (1917)
As this horrendous war in Ukraine unfolds, we see the Western media carefully following their politicians’ lines. ‘There is no Nazi problem in Ukraine’, ‘NATO is not a threat to Russia’, “Putin is a madman dictator’ etc etc…
Curiously, as I have noted in a previous blog, these memes were becoming increasingly strident even before Russia recognised the 2 Donbass republics, even in my little country of New Zealand (part of ‘Five Eyes’) we are apparently an enthusiastic supporter of the (neo)- nazi Azov Battalion in the Ukraine and their propaganda videos, should you want to believe our government funded TVNZ ‘news’.
But perhaps the most obscene media article I have seen is this recent Guardian article by a Mr Jason Stanley who states ‘no democratic country is free of far-right nationalist groups, including the United States’, in downplaying the risks of Nazis in Ukraine. What Mr Stanley deliberately omits to say is that Ukraine is the only country in the world where Nazi battalions are an integral part of their army, and whose battalions have been actively involved in killing as many Eastern Ukrainian Russian speakers in the Donbass as possible (13,000 at the last count) – with the full support of the Ukrainian government in Kiev. Let us also not forget the post-Maidan coup Kiev government’s enthusiastic sanctifying of Stepan Bandera, the white (Ukrainian Slav) supremacist and killer of ‘Asiatic’ Russian Slavs, Poles, Gypsies, the LGBTIQ community, Communists and Jews, both during and after the second world war (with support for his OUN-B group and its successors from the Americans).
Mr Stanley’s customary caricature of Putin as the ‘global leader of the far right’ is, to be polite, somewhat strange. Putin is certainly a nationalist, an anti-communist, a Russian Orthodox believer and a fervent conservative (none of those Putin attributes particularly endear him to me; as do most politicians’ ‘values’ in the West or East!), but ‘far right’? -no.
The decision by European countries to constrain Russian economic interest in Europe and beyond is an entirely valid response to Russia’s aggression, but the decision to suppress access to Russian government media like RT and Sputnik in the West indicates a strong wish to ensure the views of only one side of the war are circulated to Western populations; a series of views that are indisputably half-truths in many cases and often lies (e.g. the 4 years of ‘Russia-gate’ fabrications), as noted above. Such repressive actions lead the public to believe right is completely on our side and no compromise is possible with the evil aggressor. A recipe for a third world war, or worse.
And that is not to say that the Russian government and its media are the epitome of truth. The Russian government and its media unequivocally stated that no Ukrainian invasion was planned, while they were preparing for just such an invasion.
Reports from websites that are Russian supporters are as likely to provide a slanted or untrue version of events on the ground in Ukraine as the Western media. Part of that false view can be attributed to the ‘fog of war’ – journalists rely on narratives from people in the war-zone with their own agendas, or from people who are simply making things up to suit their audience. And then there are the journalists in the West, and no doubt in the East as well, who are paid by their various ‘intelligence’ agencies to provide that ‘special’ messaging for a gullible public.
Emotive videos of Ukrainian women filling bottles with petrol to make Molotov cocktails, of a man supposedly holding back a Russian tank, or of an armoured personnel carrier (Russian or more likely Ukrainian) deliberately running over a car, the Snake Island defenders who died but are now resurrected etc etc are all designed to dull our intellectual acuity and make us react with anger and fear rather than a calm consideration of the facts, and make mediation between the warring factions impossible.
The current fad to sanction Russian cats, deprive Russian paralympians of competing, remove access to Russian authors or composers or remove Russian media from the Western world is bizarre. Perhaps a glimpse into this madness can be seen in a recent CNN article by one Oliver Darcy where the Russian website RT is blasted for actually giving a Russian point of view to the Russian invasion! How dastardly is that! We of course should know that there is only one viewpoint to be had on this deadly event, and that is the American official line! Knowledge of any other viewpoint is therefor treasonable an un-American!
We should also note the ‘extraordinary’ levels of white racism that pervade Western media- they imply how shocking that this war could have happened to European, well-dressed educated white people who look just like us!, not those people of darker skins in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
Be warned! The populations of Arab, African, South American and Asian countries who have endured so much pointless war by the U.S. and its allies over the past 50 years are taking due note of the total hypocrisy and racism of Western media.
The enemy is inherently evil and resembles the devil.
We defend a noble cause, not our own interests.
The enemy commits atrocities on purpose; our mishaps are involuntary.
The enemy uses forbidden weapons.
We suffer small losses, those of the enemy are enormous.
Recognized artists and intellectuals back our cause.
Our cause is sacred.
All who doubt our propaganda are traitors.
On the Russian side we hear of the Ukrainian government military using illegal phosphorous shells near Kyev, or prisoners released from jails given automatic weapons, of Azov battalion units using Eastern Ukrainians as human shields in the Donbass – fact or fiction? We may never know.
The increasing practice in both West and East to use legislation to designate foreign media companies as ‘foreign agents’ also exacerbates the considerable risk for governments and their publics to misinterpret, deliberately or otherwise, the intent of a ‘foreign’ government, and thereby increase the risk of war.
After talking to a very frightened and distraught friend in Ukraine over the weekend, I know that the internet is up and running there, that water and electricity are (at least so far) not being destroyed, unlike the terror attacks by the Americans in Korea, Vietnam, Libya and Iraq (to name just a few) that deliberately destroyed all infrastructure (a ‘shock and awe’ war-crime).
This terror and destruction needs to stop -now. Russia needs to negotiate in good faith with the Kiev government; withdraw its troops and compensate for lives lost and destruction caused. In turn, Kiev and NATO need to recognise the very real fears by Russia about the likely destruction of Russia by NATO. A neutral Ukraine (as Austria was during the cold war) is the only solution. A neutral Ukraine will not only be of benefit to Russia, but also Ukraine, its neighbours, and the wider world.
We instead need to mobilise globally now to ‘fight’ catastrophic climate change and species loss . The intensely environmentally destructiveness of armies and wars of aggression need to be replaced with deliberate processes to safely reduce global consumption of commodities, to plant billions of hectares of trees that can grow in perpetuity and restore natural eco-systems – to create a sustainable planet.