To debunk the distortions of warmongers is not to defend tyranny.
How should libertarians assess the crisis in Ukraine? Some would have us believe that a true commitment to liberty entails (1) glorifying the “Euromaidan revolution” and the government it installed in Kiev, (2) welcoming, excusing, or studiously ignoring US involvement with that revolution and government, and (3) hysterically demonizing Vladimir Putin and his administration for Russia’s involvement in the affair. Since Ron Paul refuses to follow this formula or to remain silent on the issue, these “NATO-tarians,” as Justin Raimondo refers to them, deride him as an anti-freedom, anti-American, shill for the Kremlin.
Dr. Paul takes it all in stride of course, having endured the same kind of smears and dishonest rhetorical tricks his entire career. As he surely knows, the price of being a principled anti-interventionist is eternal patience. Still, it must be frustrating. After all he has done to teach Americans about the evils of empire and the bitter fruits of intervention, there are still legions of self-styled libertarians whose non-interventionism seems to go little further than admitting that the Iraq War was “a mistake,” and who portray opposition to US hostility against foreign governments as outright support for those governments.
“Yes, the Iraq War was clearly a mistake, but we have to confront Putin; we can’t let Iran ‘get nukes;’ we’ve got to save the Yazidis on the mountain; we must crush ISIS, et cetera, et cetera. What are you, a stooge of the Czar/Ayatollah/Caliph?”
Some of these same libertarians supported Ron Paul in 2008 and 2012, and presumably laughed along with the rest of us when the neocons tried to paint him as “pro-Saddam” for opposing the Iraq War and for debunking the lies and distortions that were used to sell it. Yet, today they do not hesitate to tar Dr. Paul as a “confused Pro-Putin libertarian” over his efforts to oppose US/NATO interventions in Ukraine and against Russia. Such tar has been extruded particularly profusely by an eastern-European-heavy faction of Students for Liberty which might be dubbed “Students for Collective Security.”
It should be obvious that Ron Paul holds no brief for Putin and the Kremlin. Let me inform the smear-artists and their dupes what Ron Paul is trying to do with his statements and articles about Ukraine and Russia (for example, here is Dr. Paul before the coup and one year after). He is not trying to support Putin’s government. He is doing what he has always done. He is trying to prevent US intervention. He is trying to stop war.
Some NATO-tarians have responded to this assertion by asking, “If that is so, why can’t he just limit himself to simply stating his principled opposition to intervention? Why must he go beyond that, all the way to reciting Kremlin talking points?”
First of all, this is one of the most egregious fallacies that Ron Paul’s critics regularly trot out: the allegation that, “because A voices agreement with B about statements of fact, then A must be doing so in the service of B.”
To see the fallacy involved clearly, let us draw out the Iraq War comparison a bit more. Before and during that war, in spite of Bush Administration and media propaganda to the contrary, Ron Paul argued that Saddam Hussein did not have a weapons of mass destruction program or ties to Al Qaeda. Saddam argued the same thing. So was Ron Paul just “reciting Baghdad talking points” back then? Was he being a “confused pro-Saddam libertarian”? No. Do you know why Ron Paul was saying the same thing as Saddam? Because it was true. As is widely accepted today, Saddam did not have a WMD program or ties to Al Qaeda. Is it valorizing Saddam to admit that he told the truth? Again, no; it is simply to abstain from hysterically demonizing him. Of course Saddam was a head of state, and as such, he was a lying murderer. But in this instance, telling the truth happened to serve his interests, which included trying to avoid a war in which he might be overthrown and killed. Ron Paul also told the truth, because he’s not a lying murderer, and because he also wanted to prevent such a disastrous war: although of course not for Saddam’s sake, but for the sake of avoiding all the catastrophic results that would surely (and did) flow from it.
Ron Paul had no love for Saddam then or for Putin today, just as, notwithstanding endless smears to the contrary, there was no love nurtured by Murray Rothbard for Khrushchev, Justin Raimondo for Milosevic, Lew Rockwell for Lukashenko, or Jacob Hornberger for Chavez. Rather, it just so happens that, to paraphrase Stephen Colbert, the truth has a well-known anti-war bias. That is the only reason why, when speaking about the same international crises, principled anti-war voices so frequently find themselves in agreement over points of fact with tyrants who want to avoid being attacked. The truth can, in some cases, happen to serve the purposes of both good and evil men. That doesn’t stop it from being the truth.
Similarly, there are a great many true (and intervention-disfavoring) points of fact concerning Ukraine and Russia that are being completely ignored by the media, which instead regurgitates the intervention-favoring propaganda it imbibes directly from Washington, London, and the NATO bureaucracy. These truths are broadcasted, and this propaganda refuted, both by the Kremlin and by Ron Paul. But again this coincidence does not occur because the two are in cahoots. The Kremlin engages in this broadcasting and refuting because it considers avoiding US/NATO intervention to be in its state interest. Ron Paul does so because, again, it is the truth, and because he considers avoiding US/NATO intervention to be moral and in the interest of humanity in general (Americans, Russians, and Ukrainians, included).
What is this propaganda that Ron Paul labors to refute, along with his Institute for Peace and Prosperity, and like-minded alternative media outlets like Antiwar.com and LewRockwell.com?
According to the Washington/NATO/Kiev/neocon narrative, a peaceful protest movement emerged in Kiev against an oppressive government, was met with a deadly, unprovoked, and uncompromising crackdown, but ultimately prevailed, causing Ukraine’s dictator to flee. A popularly-supported, freedom-loving, self-determination-exemplifying government then emerged. But dastardly Putin horribly invaded and conquered Crimea, and engineered a “terrorist” revolt in the east of the country. Putin is the new Hitler, and if the US and Europe don’t confront him now, he will continue his conquests until he has recreated the Soviet Empire and re-erected the Iron Curtain.
The reality of the situation, which Dr. Paul and only a handful of others strive to represent, is far different.
First of all, the chief grievance of the protesters was not about domestic oppression; it was over foreign policy and foreign aid. They wanted closer ties with the west, and they were angry that (the duly elected) President Viktor Yanukovych had rejected a European Union Association Agreement over its severe stringency.
Far from “organic,” the movement was heavily subsidized and sponsored by the US government. Before the crisis, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland bragged about the US “investing” $5 billion in “helping” Ukraine become more western-oriented.
Once the anti-government protests in Kiev were under way, both Nuland and Senator John McCain personally joined the demonstrators in Maidan Square, implicitly promising US support for a pro-western regime change. Nuland even went so far as to pass out cookies, like a sweet little imperial auntie.
Far from peaceful, the protesters were very violent, and it is not clear which side fired the first gunshot. The Foreign Minister of Estonia, while visiting Kiev, was shown evidence that convinced him that protest leaders had hired snipers to shoot at both sides. And the BBC recently interviewed a Maidan protester who admitted to firing on the police before the conflict had become pitched.
In fact, the hard core of the Euromaidan movement, and its most violent component, was comprised of Nazis. And no, I don’t mean to say “neo-Nazi,” which is a term really only appropriate for people who merely glean inspiration from historical Nazis. On the other hand, the torchlight marching fascists that spearheaded the Ukraine coup (chief among them, the Svoboda and Right Sector parties) are part of an unbroken lineal tradition that goes back to Stepan Bandera, the Nazi collaborator who brought the Holocaust to Ukraine. Even a pro-Maidan blogger wrote for The Daily Beast:
“Of course the role that the Right Sector played in the Euromaidan cannot be underestimated. (…) They were the first to throw Molotov coctails and stones at police and to mount real and well-fortified barricades.”
More fundamentally, what is often forgotten by many libertarians, is that revolutionary street and public square movements like Euromaidan are not “the people,” but are comprised of would-be members of and partisans for a new state, every one of which is inherently an engine of violent aggression. What we saw in the clash at Maidan Square was not “Man Vs. State,” but “Incoming State vs. Outgoing State.”
Far from being completely intransigent, Yanukovych agreed to early elections and assented to US demands to withdraw the riot police from the square. As soon as he did that, the government buildings were seized. The city hall was then draped with white supremacist banners.
Far from being supported and appointed popularly and broadly, the new government’s backing is highly sectional and heavily foreign. It was installed by a capital city street coup, not a countrywide revolution. In a deeply divided country, it only represented a particularly aggressive component of one side of that divide. Moreover, its top officeholders were handpicked by Nuland, and its installation was presided over by the US Vice President, as was famously revealed in an intercepted and leaked telephone recording.
And the only thing saving the extravagantly warlike new government from bankruptcy is the unstinting flow of billions of dollars in aid from the US, the EU, and the IMF, as well as “non-lethal” military aid (including drones, armored Humvees, and training) from the US.
Far from being freedom-loving, top offices are held by an ex-bankster (Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, whom Nuland handpicked when she said “Yats is our guy” in the above recording), a corrupt oligarch (chocolate magnate Petro Poroshenko), and, yes, Nazis (including Andriy Parubiy, until recently the National Security chief, and Oleh Tyahnybok, also mentioned by Nuland in the recording as a key advisor to the new government.
Far from being an exemplar of self-determination, the new regime responded to eastern attempts to assert regional autonomy with all-out war, shelling civilian centers (with aerial and cluster bombs, even) and killing thousands. Of course Nazis have also played a key role in the war. As the famous journalist Robert Parry wrote:
“The U.S.-backed Ukrainian government is knowingly sending neo-Nazi paramilitaries into eastern Ukrainian neighborhoods to attack ethnic Russians who are regarded by some of these storm troopers as “Untermenschen” or subhuman, according to Western press reports.
Recently, one eastern Ukrainian town, Marinka, fell to Ukraine’s Azov battalion as it waved the Wolfsangel flag, a symbol used by Adolf Hitler’s SS divisions in World War II. The Azov paramilitaries also attacked Donetsk, one of the remaining strongholds of ethnic Russians opposed to the Kiev regime that overthrew elected President Viktor Yanukovych last February.”
Plagued by failure and desertion in spite of massive western aid, the “pro-freedom” new regime in Kiev has resorted to conscripting its non-rebeling citizens. Meeting stiff draft resistance and opposition to the war, it has jailed a journalist for merely advocating draft-dodging, prepared a law restricting the travel of draft-age citizens, contemplated conscripting women over 20, and passed a law allowing the military to shoot deserters on the spot.
And the Nazis have also played in key role in the stifling and crushing of internal dissent as well. After the coup, Right Sector began patrolling the streets and squares of Kiev. And in Odessa, Right Sector toughs joined a mob in trapping and burning to death 38 anti-Maidan protesters in the Trades Union House.
Whatever involvement Moscow has in it, the revolt in the east is far from engineered. People there do not need Russian money and threats to know they had absolutely no say in the regime change in distant Kiev, and that it was executed by their political enemies. Russian-speaking and heavily industrial, it would have suffered grievously, both economically and politically, had it been dragged into a new expressly anti-Russian order. It was made abundantly clear which way the wind was blowing when Tyahybok’s Svoboda, as the Christian Science Monitor put it, “pushed through the cancellation of a law that gave equal status to minority languages, such as Russian,” even if the cancellation was temporary.
Far from “terrorists,” the rebels are not trying to destabilize or overthrow the government in Kiev, but are seeking to establish autonomy from it. If anything, it is Kiev, with its high civilian death toll, that has been more engaged in terrorism.
And far from Soviet revanchism, Russian policy has been largely reactive against US aggressiveness. Since Moscow dropped its side of the Cold War by relinquishing its empire, including both the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union, the US has taken advantage by progressively expanding NATO, an explicitly anti-Moscow military pact, all the way to Russia’s borders: a policy that even Cold War mastermind George Kennan, in 1998, predicted would prove to be tragic. Moscow warned Washington that Russia could not abide a hostile Ukraine, which would be a bridge too far.
But Washington blithely pushed on to snatch Ukraine anyway. The sheer flippancy of it can be seen most vividly when Gideon Rose, editor of the US foreign policy establishment organ Foreign Affairs (published by the Council on Foreign Relations) went on The Colbert Report in the midst of the crisis and jocularly boasted about how “we want to basically distract Russia” with the shiny Olympic medals it was winning at the Sochi Olympics while getting Ukraine “to flip sides.” Colbert aptly characterized this geopolitical strategy as, “Here’s a shiny object! We’ll just take an entire country away from you,” to which Rose enthusiastically responded, “Basically!” (Perhaps to atone for such an embarrassing and pandering display of naïveté and frivolity, Rose later published an excellent article by respected establishment foreign policy expert John Mearsheimer arguing “Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault.” Even that old CFR-associated murder-monger Henry Kissinger has urged reconsideration.)
The takeover included Crimea which is heavily Russian-speaking and has been under effective Russian control since the 18th century. Unsurprisingly, Washington’s brilliant “Shiny Object” doctrine failed miserably, and rather than see its only warm-water port pass under the sway of an increasingly antagonistic rival, Russia asserted control over Crimea, doing so without loss of life. Later, following a referendum, Crimea was formally annexed.
Of course this act was not “libertarian”; hardly anything that a state does is. But it is simply a warmongering distortion to characterize this bloodless foreign policy counter-move as evidence of reckless imperial Russian expansionism, especially when you compare the “invasion” of Crimea with the bloody havoc the US has wreaked upon the Middle East, North Africa, and Southwest Asia for the past 14 years.
As for whatever meddling Russia is guilty of in eastern Ukraine, let’s try to put it in perspective without absolving it. Just imagine what the US would do if Russia had supported a coup in Ottawa that installed an anti-American Canadian government right on our border, and then perpetually re-armed that government as it bombed English-speaking separatists in British Columbia. Compared to what you’d expect to follow that, Russia’s response to a US-sponsored, anti-Russian junta bombing Russian speakers right on its border has been positively restrained.
After all, it is Putin who has been constantly pushing for ceasefires against American militant obduracy and European reluctance, just as, in 2013, it was Putin who successfully pushed for a deal that prevented the US from launching yet another air war, this time against the Syrian government.
Again, this is not to claim that any foreign intervention on the part of Moscow is at all justified on libertarian grounds, or to argue that Putin is anything more than a lying murderer who happens to be more intelligent and sane than our own lying murderers. It is only to make clear that in this respect too, Russia’s involvement in the affair is hardly evidence of grand imperial designs.
As an aside: Putin’s foiling of neocon war aims in Syria (and potential future such foilings) may be the reason that the anti-Russian putsch in Ukraine, and the new Putin-threatening Cold War it engendered, was advanced by Nuland, who is a neocon holdover from the Bush Administration and the wife of leading neocon Robert Kagan, in the first place.
To think that any country is too big or too dangerous (especially if destabilized) to be targeted by neocons for regime change would be naïve. And to think Putin is too naïve to know this would be equally naïve.
So much for the Washington/NATO/Kiev/neocon narrative. Now to return to the NATO-tarian objection from above: why must Ron Paul stress these points of fact, especially when they make wicked Putin look better, or at least not-so-wicked? Why can’t Dr. Paul merely state his principled opposition to intervention?
It might make sense for him to do so if that were enough to make a difference. But the thing is, it’s not. The sad but inescapable fact is that the American people are not operating under the same moral premises as Ron Paul and other principled libertarians. As such, the public is susceptible to war lies and distortions. And the Washington/NATO/Kiev/neocon narrative about Ukraine and Russia is nothing but a tissue of war lies and distortions.
As the warmongers are abundantly aware, if Kiev is sufficiently falsely valorized, Washington/NATO sufficiently falsely absolved, and Putin and the eastern separatists sufficiently falsely demonized, then American opinion will provide cover for US intervention, regardless of what principled libertarians say. So the only way to practically stop such intervention is to go beyond statements of principle and to debunk those war lies and distortions; moreover, to debunk them bravely and forthrightly, even if the Kremlin is also trying to debunk them, and even if simple-minded or lying critics will use that parallel to smear you as an agent of a foreign power.
Besides, if Ron Paul’s statements really are part of some ulterior pro-Putin agenda, how could he possibly hope for his efforts to advance such an agenda? He couldn’t. He is not writing in or speaking Russian; he has zero effect on Putin’s domestic support. The only real effect he has is on opinion and policy in the English-speaking world. So, as it concerns the Ukraine crisis, the only real impact he could hope to have is to dissuade intervention.
So much for Ron Paul’s “ulterior motives.” But what about some of his critics? A question actually worth asking is as follows: Why are some of his avowedly libertarian critics, many of whom profess not to favor intervention (or at least studiously avoid talking about that question concretely) so absolutely livid over Ron Paul’s challenge to their narrative? Their English-language blasts against Dr. Paul are also not likely to effect Putin’s domestic support one way or the other. Their only possible impact is also on US foreign policy. So, why are they so extremely sensitive about the acceptance in America of a narrative that lends itself toward intervention and confrontation? The question answers itself.
Let me close with a few additional questions.
Why is it “defending tyranny” for Ron Paul to agree with Putin on points of fact, but not for “libertarians” to hail a government that rose to power in a violent putsch, that welcomes outright Nazis in its ranks, that conscripts its people, and that drops cluster bombs on civilians?
What exactly is “libertarian” about NATO, which amounts to an hegemonic, dual-hemisphere, nuclear tripwire, species suicide pact?
What is so secure about a state of “collective security” in which petulant, reckless nationalists in small eastern European countries can drag the whole world into nuclear war over a border dispute?
And finally, why should a new Cold War be launched, and the risk of nuclear annihilation for all our families and hometowns be heightened over the question of which clique rules a particular river basin on the other side of the world?
Ron Paul has excellent, solidly libertarian answers to all these questions. Do his critics?
Also published at DanSanchez.me and Medium.com. Follow Dan Sanchez via Facebook, Twitter, or TinyLetter.
74 thoughts on “Why Ron Paul is Right about Ukraine”
Wow, what a sad mess the U.S. government is. It's quite frustrating how little say we peons have on what our rulers arbitrarily do to other countries that are no threat to us whatsoever. And these wannabe Ukrainian Nazis…I had no idea they were so powerful in number. Are their attacks on ethnic Russians some sort of "cosmic revenge" for the Soviet Union's starvation of Ukrainians in the 30's? The whole thing is a nightmare. May our leaders burn in hell for the misery they've helped create.
About the number of nazis: According to German official information which was published in Der Spiegel not so long ago they are "only around 2 million" in numbers. Ah yes, "only"!?
About the nazis themselves: It might help to understand that large numbers of (mostly Western) Ukrainians felt being liberated by the nazis from Stalin/communists in WWII. When the nazis invaded, already a couple of million Ukrainians were butchered by the communists. (Which, back then, were supported by the USA hugely.) This might also explain their somehow weird mix of ideology/flags, etc. As one Ukrainian "nazi" stated in a Vice interview (roughly): I don't really know what it means or stands for, but it scares Russians, that's why we do it.
The USA did not "support" the Soviets.
While it is true that Ukrainians perhaps had reason to believe that the Germans were liberators, they were soon disabused of that notion. And, of course, all of that occurred over 60 years ago.
Ukrainians of today have nothing to do with Stalin or Hitler. If they choose to call themselves Nazis, it is because that is what they are, what they admire, etc. The Soviet Union fell 25 years ago. Young men wearing swastikas in Kiev either don't remember or barely remember that, much less the occurrences of WWII, let alone the Stalinist killings of the 1930's.
And, guess what, "scaring Russians" is no excuse. You might think so, or think its somehow "cute." But folks here in the USA have no use for it, nor, for that matter, your grudges against Russia based on events nearly a century old. Go fight your own war, if you hate Russia so much. Leave us out of, though, 'Kay Knez?
Fcuk… this is sick… whoever wrote this BS should move to Russia or North Korea and "live happily ever after"
How did the admin allow this guy to spew such hatred nonsense?
Probably the same idiot who let this piece get written in the first place.
If you Nazi genocidal KKKan butcher does not like this site,go to some present day Neocon site, after having meds for your sick mind, seems you KKKan Nazi degenerate did not have your treatment for a long time
Ron Paul either a simple idiot or double idiot paid by triple idiots Russians…
Was that even a sentence?
mind blowingly rational stream of conscious and geo-political conscience! It makes tremendous sense particularly if you feel we have been recently duped into 20 or so highly profitable (for oligarchs and financial institutions) wars. Assuming they are going to have another real war with Russia for fun and neo-con profit, where are they going to live in blissful retirement to spend the loot without getting attacked or dripped-on by glow-in the dark irradiated zombies? Are some wars better not started regardless of the causus belli or opportunity for plunder? Is setting-up a game of nuclear armed chicken with the second most powerful alliance on the planet still a good idea if you were planning to retire and spend time growing rhodos and fishing and playing baseball with your grandchildren? Do neo-cons have a we-were-just-kidding plan "B" or are they truly to committed to a global sepuku / samson option if they / we lose? Do neo-cons do anything other than dream big about obliterating evil comic book enemies and ruling the world? Is it too late to invent a drug or make a video game or addictive snuff porn to keep them better occupied? How come all the neo-cons are moving to the USA and no one elsewhere is complaining about a shortage of them? M\
Please see my essays:
When your former libertarian hero calls you a Nazi
The Latest Libertarian Shillery for Russia
The US has absolutely no obligation or right to hamfist its way into the messy internal affairs of yet another deeply, complexly fractured country—nor, for that matter, into the affairs of *any* foreign nation. And because US inference in the present case of Ukraine significantly raises the risk of global nuclear annihilation, Washington's developing Kiev project isn't just ill-advised, cruel and highly questionable under international law; it's completely, world-murderingly mad.
And its not un-libertarian to point such a thing out. Nor is it un-libertarian to note that the current bunch in Kiev hardly smell like roses—and, yes, this includes the actual Nazis among them—and that they were installed by a coup, and that it would be rank insanity to risk war with Russia to prop them up. It's also not un-libertarian to say that the Russian state, while like all states a monstrous and criminal endeavor, has not invaded Ukraine—or, if it has, not a shred of credible evidence has been adduced to prove it—, and that the Crimean annexation was highly popular in Crimea. It's not even un-libertarian—as Mr. Sanchez points out in this excellent essay—to say these demonstrably *true* things when some murdering, thieving, lying head of state like Putin opportunistically mouths them. Indeed, when such *truths* run counter to the drive toward World War III, it's not only libertarian to say such things; it's the only thing that any sane, principled person can really do.
In brief, whether the oligarchs who are plundering Ukraine are Euro-centric or Russo-centric is of no importance to most of us. Survival, however, is. If you're so keen on preventing Russophone Ukrainians from realizing political self-determination, I'm sure there's a place for you among the glorious patriots of the Azov Battalion. Now, please stop attempting to highjack libertarianism as a vehicle for your ethno-nationalist fears and bigotries, and kindly leave the rest of us the hell alone.
It is really like 2+2=4: Deployment of missiles in Eastern Europe (Poland and Romania) leads to Launch On Warning (probably by 2017) and Suicide by accident/mistake. What else can the Russians do to defend themselves ? Will they even announce when they adopt Launch On Warning=Suicide Guaranteed. The crazy Americans asked for it ! The Russians want to be certain that they won't die alone. Stupid, crazy, bloody fools in the Pentagon !!!
We have already had our warning . Medvedev said Russia is claiming the right to strike first to prevent a attack on Russia . Although he announced this after Bush Claimed United States claimed the right to strike any country first without warning . So now we are all twice as safe ..
More false equivalence. The USA has always reserved "the right" to strike first. Russia did not respond in kind until the USA started building its missile shield in its eastern NATO allies territory. The shield is designed to enable the West to launch a first strike against Russia and then neutralize any attempted Russian retaliation. Laughably, the installations, which are/were to be scattered across eastern and central Europe, were purportedly aimed at Iran, which is nowhere even in the vicinity. Even at that, official Russian doctrine does NOT embrace first strike actions, and stray statements from years ago are not the same thing.
There seems to be an issue with some of the photos appearing on my browser. Most recent Firefox. Just white page where the photos should be.
Check that, I think they're supposed to be youtube videos.
No one, not even Ron Paul has come out,what purpose or reason is USA interested in Ukraine?
USA is flat broke, It does not need another USA welfare funded state.
U.S. has no interest in Ukraine. That's why we aren't doing Dog Doo.
There are a couple of reasons which come to my mind:
– Controlling Crimea would mean controlling the only military warm weather port the Russian navy has. During winter, Russia's navy would be cut off from world's geo politics (e.g. middle east).
– In the black sea, but also on land, huge resources are waiting to be exploited (esp. ore which is very well suited for weapon production and oil). Note that the Ukrainians are paying weapons with exploitation rights (since they are broke). So if the Ukrainians do not conquer the eastern parts, they sit on their debts. Catch 22 situation: Endless debts or a horrible war.
– According to US geo strategists (e.g. George Friedman @ Stratfor, Feb 4, 2015) the main goal of US foreign policy in the last 100 years was to avoid an alliance between Germany and Russia. In the first year of sanctions alone, German industry has lost 40€ billions through sanctions and is the main "victim" of the sanctions. (While Russia opens markets to other countries and IMHO in 3-5 years probably will be better off than before the sanctions.)
– Personal profit of weapon/resource merchants/producers is also always a reason (e.g. Victoria "Fuck the EU" Nuland and her family).
The EU also has it's own, but more limited goals, currently mainly to find an excuse to establish a "EU military".
Unfortunately, it is not about the people on either side very much.
Please. Save it for your next game of RISK!
Russia and Germany are not going to ally any time soon. Germany is safely in NATO, and will remain so, Crimea or no Crimea. Indeed, the Soviets controlled the Crimea throughout their entire existence, including during the Cold War, and yet that did not hinder the American-German alliance or NATO generally.
And leave "the people" out of it. Again, if Urkainian "people" want to fight each other, with some of them wanting to fight Russia as well, they can have at it. But the USA has no need to prevent the Russians, and their tinkertoy navy, from having a "warm water port." This is not 1889, you know!
Jun 6, 2014 Ron Paul: Nothing Orderly About the Currency Collapse That's Coming It Will Be a Panic!
Congressman & former Presidential Candidate Ron Paul joins the show this week, discussing:
1. Putin's response to US sanctions with economic retaliation- implications for US economy & the US Dollar- It is very significant, dumping of US dollars has begun…The dollar can't be maintained. One reason the dollar has been sustained as well as it has been is who wants to buy yuan or euros? But ultimately they will buy the real money, and that's gold!
2. Paul on the Coming collapse of the dollar & all fiat currencies: Officials in charge of monetary policy are very aware of what's coming- they believe as long as it is orderly they will be ok…The problem is when people lose confidence in a currency, they lose confidence completely. There's nothing orderly about it! There's always a panic, and that's hard to manage. There will be a day when people will panic in the financial markets, not only in the dollar, but in the world-wide system!
3. The former member of the House Financial Services Committee explains why his nemesis at the Federal Reserve works so hard to discredit gold, and what he wishes he would have asked Ben Bernanke during his grilling of the Fed Chairman at his House Hearings on the Fed's Monetary Policy.
The evil neoconized US government trolls are out in force today, eh? Apparently, the disasters in Iraq, Libya and Syria and elsewhere don't provide enough of a thrill anymore. Now we have to go after the big nuclear armed boys to get our war kicks and nuke the planet in the process. And the neocons and their fellow travelers like Hilltrot and others have the nerve to call ISIS barbaric.
Nothing new under the sun! The pro-Putin faction is just repeating the same pretexts why Putin should be allowed to win over and over again. The fact that a country's government is overthrown does not entitle a neighbouring country to seize part of the first country's territory by force, whether idrectly or indirectly. Putin cannot use the coup to justify an open breach of the Helsinki Final Act. Mr Sanchez claims that Ron Paul "is trying to prevent US intervention" and that claim appears under a photograph of Victoria Nuland! The US has already intervened and the question now is how to put right the damage that that intervention caused. He's not trying to support Putin's governement, we're told, but he's also not offering any support to the now democratically elected Ukrainian president and government. The Ukrainians are the innocent victims here but instead of trying to help them get their country back to normal, he's victimizing the victims for having been victimized! Mr Sanchez is simply trying to use Ron Paul as today's pretext for letting Putin win.
Dude, seriously, just STFU, you don't have clue what you're talking about. Tell ya what, how about from now on anytime any of you jerk-off NeoCons pump your fists for a war it automatically enlists you in the military and bumps you right up to the front lines. Wanna bet me after that this country will get a whole lot quieter, you gutless cowards love war…..when someone else is fighting it.
I am willing to give you the benefit of the doubt. Are you actually saying that because the US has already intervened we should idly stand by while more intervention is done in our name?
By that very same logic could you not say that because the US has already intervened in Iraq, directly leading to the ISIS threat, that the US must stay the course and continue to intervene? For the people of Iraq?
The US has already intervened in the conflict between North Korea and South Korea. Must it stay the course and continue to intervene?
The greater middle east?
We have already intervened, so we must continue to intervene. All to prevent the victimization of the people. It seems like a noble goal. Lets continue the logical parallel.
The US government already intervenes in the economy of the several states. Must they continue to intervene?
The US government already intervenes in the interpersonal relationships of the people of the several states. Must they continue to intervene?
The US government already intervenes in the communications between pretty much everyone on earth. Must they continue to intervene?
To pretend that stopping this intervention would not cause real human suffering would be intellectually dishonest. To pretend that this is a valid reason to support continued intervention is doubly so. Is it not clear that intervention begets intervention? Is it not clear that intervention causes self destructive results?
Where else would you suggest a person or group of persons continue a self destructive course of action, because stopping would cause discomfort?
I agree that because Ron Paul and Russia media happen to agree on a particular point that that does not mean that Ron Paul supports Russia's overall position against the West. However, the evidence on this page is that we are given a fairly prejudicial tone throughout as against a more objective tone as in
– Far from “organic,” the movement was heavily subsidized and sponsored by the US government. Before the crisis, Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland bragged about the US “investing” $5 billion in “helping” Ukraine become more western-oriented. —
I watched the 'bragged' link of Nuland's speech and did not see any bragging and only a passing mention in a single sentence. The assertion also missed a critical point about how the money was given to Ukraine as shown in this post, an interview of Nuland by Christiane Amanpour of CNN on April 21, 2014
where Nuland states that that amount was given over a period starting in 1991 and noted in the link below to extend to 2013, which would have been around a 12 year span and not confined to a short period of time to a particular group as being suggested in the quote. When we see the transfer of money to Ukraine in this light they money could have been given to a wide variety of Ukrainian organizations and quite possibly to support, over that long period, the new Ukrainian governments since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. I am not saying that money was not given to government opposition groups. I am saying we need more detailed information than just a passing phrase in a speech to say ' the movement was heavily subsidized and sponsored by the US government'. What is written is a bias and then we are faced with the question of why is there is bias. And then we are faced with the question of why is this bias the same as the bias given by Russian spokespeople as shown in the following link.
I would think that given the easy linkages between Ron Paul and Russian spokespeople that Ron Paul would want to emphasize the careful detail of his points rather than a kind of over-arching and rather obvious generalization. But now that we see this kind of biased generalization that should be avoided and that it aligns with the Russian position, we are not far from saying that Ron Paul is apparently repeating Russian propaganda when he could easily choose a fair and honest path. Why would Ron Paul promote Russian propaganda?
Please. The money was given to the pro Western, anti Russian opposition. That is what "non governmental" organizations who take money from the US government do with that money. They use it to undermine and, if necessary, as it was in Ukraine, to overthrow govts the US govt does not like. Where do you think Uncle Sam's dollars went, to the pro Russian groups?
There is no generalization at play here, much less an "overgeneralization." As for Nuland, she is pictured handing out cookies to the anti government protestors. What more do you need? Do you think she gave out cookies to the president, or his supporters? The US and the EU clearly thrust themselves into internal Ukrainian politics, and clearly sponsored an anti democratic coup. End of story.
Doing so, by the by, was a gross violation of the Helsinki Final Statute as well as the much ballyhooed Budapest Memorandum.
There is nothing "propagandastic" about any of that. It is purely factual, and all quite well documented.
In short, your pose of reasonableness is just that, a pose. You are simply a more sophisticated version of the other obvious neo con and Ukrainian nationalist trolls. And you are completely full of it. Now go away.
I might also mention that Nuland was caught on tape openly deciding on the composition of the post coup government, before the coup was effectuated! Isn't that enough for you, Mr. "Biased Generalization?"
before the coup there was a democratically elected representative government in Ukraine. The purpose of the coup was to prevent a government that would in any way represent the interests of the industrial east. The industrial east wanted federal states with a division of powers between the national and state governments with official languages based on regional demography. The west wanted a unitary national government to uniformly impose western ukrainian language, culture and european values, banking practices, standards and economic priorities on the whole nation. This objective was for the east tantamount to cultural and political oppression. The rebellion to this oppression was predictable and created the context for apprehension of a civil war which could be presumed to result in a negotiated conclusion along the lines of confederated states. If europe and russia have a free hand, this is where ukraine will go -towards security and stability. Blocking europe we have the neo-cons representing the USA. The neocons will operate ukraine as a catspaw to create context for a regional war capable of being expanded into a global nuclear war. But, it would seem that the neo-cons are also bringing europe to the fracturing point at which Russian & German stability and security can be best achieved with a new post NATO alliance possibly including France. Why the USA & UK would allow the neo-cons to precipitate a divorce from the EU is incomprehensible other than to create a cut rate sanctuary for transatlantic oligarchic wealth. The USA should shutdown the neocons, back-off NATO and create eastern europe security zone adequate to the intent of the agreements terminating the soviet union & warsaw pact. The inevitable alternative is WWIII. Michael\
I'am afraid of w war 3 I must confess I side more against what the United States has been doing than in favor .
Michael, you write
— before the coup there was a democratically elected representative government in Ukraine. The purpose of the coup was to prevent a government that would in any way represent the interests of the industrial east. —
The problem here is that anyone can say anything and the difference between what we should accept, more or less, is that the assertions being made are backed up by credible sources (links) or personal, on-the-ground observations (dates, and places). Otherwise we can easily regard those assertions as mere opinions and disregard them.
The president of the Ukraine was elected, and the election, even in the eyes of biased, Western observers, who were openly rooting (at the least) for the other side, was fair. That much is not even open to question.
The purpose of the coup, from the Western perspective, at least, was clearly to pull Ukraine into its economic orbit (as the rejected EU treaty was the trigger for the coup). With the military aspect actually written into the treaty as well, and the goal of eventual membership in NATO not even disputed.
So, no, actually, there is no "problem" here. Only two kinds of people insist on "proof" when the "assertions" are basic, are born out by every credible news account of the events at issue, and when they jibe perfectly with past practice and with the various interests at stake. One kind is the pendant who just can't help himself. The other is the person who wants to obscure and derail the conversation, with demands for "proof," which he will then ignore if they are provided. My view is that, in this case, you are the second kind. All the proof, and links and sources you could possibly need are either in the main article, or can be reached via a basic google search.
So, while you seem to come off as more reasonable than the obvious trolls, in reality, you are just as partisan, just as wrong, and just as much of a troll, or perhaps a worse one because you fraudulently hide your trollishness.
credible sources and links are probabley just opinions too . Even cpa audits are often times just opinions After the financial farm crises of the 80s All farmland was to be evaluated by certified licensed appraisers . two pieces of farm land about the same size were appraised one at 300 dollars a acre the other at 2000 dollars a acre . The 2000 dollar valued farm property had been under water every yr but 1 for the previous 5 yrs . The 300 dollar valued farm had a new house on it and never ever flooded . this land was about 2 miles apart . The pt is everything is a matter of opinion and opinion can be effected by what ever you want to say something is . or is not . both properties were appraised by appraisers licensed from the same state . So what good are sources or links or facts when they don't jive with reality
Whatever. I am not interested in meta debate about subjectivity and so on. The point is that the baseline reality of the Ukrainian situation is not open to dispute. And to try make it appear as if it were is to introduce a distracting, red herring argument. Just another trick in the neo con trade.
I don't think Ukraine could join NATO unless Russia should join NATO . Georgia I think wanted to Join NATO but no one in Europe wanted to let Georgia join . The Baltic countries are already in NATO they would never be allowed to join today . If the Baltic countries got into a fight with Russia that would probably finish NATO . None of the European countries would send troops to fight for the Baltic countries . And the American people will stop the United States government too if Europe backs out and they will back away from a fight against Russia . NATO will only fight from the air and attack little weak countries that can't fight back .
First of all, people who talk about Russia joining NATO don't understand the situation at all. All defensive alliances are aimed at someone, they are not merely defensive in the abstract. And NATO is aimed at Russia. It always has been, and nothing really changed when the USSR fell. Russia is still Russia, with or without communism. It is still a great power, still has nuclear weapons, still sits on the edge of Europe, etc.
Second, the US puppet regime in Georgia wanted to join NATO, but Russia stepped in to stop it. Yeah, most of Europe was dubious or indifferent.
Thirdly, while I don't disagree that the Baltic States should not have been let in to NATO, your analysis is all wrong. Russia would not dare to attack a NATO country. And their defense is not up to "Europe." If Russia attacked the Balts, it would be subject to massive US air, drone and missile attacks, and then ground and naval forces as well. The "American people" would not be consulted until well after the fact, if at all, and, by then, the war will be on, the "troops" would be in the field and need "supporting," the enemy will have been demonized and so on.
And even if Germany balks, the Poles and other E Europeans, as well as the British, will join in.
I see I got my time-span mis-calculated. 1991 to 2013 is 22 years and not 13.
What does Randy Paul have to say about all this exactly? I will let him speak for himself in his "Time" online 'piece' entitled:
"Sen. Rand Paul: U.S. Must Take Strong Action Against Putin’s Aggression"
It's a good read. I recommend it to all..
The USA has no business meddling in Ukraine and needs to stop provoking the nuclear-armed Russians. This meddling is a consequence of the stranglehold of the military-industrial complex that President Eisenhower warned about.
For real leverage to break the stranglehold of the military-industrial complex, please see the paper, "A Legal Framework for Just Military Action", which builds on international law, our Constitution and the conscience of individual citizens. It requires adherence to the Geneva Conventions and is self-enforcing. The comments for the Justice Party of Colorado photo for this paper have background articles and supporting information.
Please share this legal framework widely so that its self-enforcing mechanism takes hold.
Justice Party CO, I found "A Legal Framework for Just Military Action" here https://www.facebook.com/JusticePartyColorado/pos…. I agree we have had far too much use of U.S. military force abroad where U.S. lives and treasure have been wasted and our world-standing diminished. The 'Legal Framework' would have prevented the Iraq War of 2003 for which the Weapons of Mass Destruction argument, the key argument, for the war was afterwards found to be false. And I agree we would have a better world if we could have an effective legal framework that the entire world would abide by and work to improve.
However, an obvious problem with the 'Legal Framework' is that we have ongoing Russian aggression (international agreements being violated) that would fail to be addressed given Russia's veto in the Security Council. Let's consider the following scenario:
The United States is a few years back, say 2005 when our percent of oil imports to oil consumption was 60% (http://www.aei.org/publication/shale-oil-a-tremendous-development-for-u-s-oil-production-shovel-ready-jobs-economic-growth-and-energy-independence/) and where Russia's economy, a major world oil producer, depends critically on oil exports (http://www.aei.org/publication/the-political-economy-of-russian-oil-and-gas/). Russia gets together with Iran, a country calling the U.S. 'The Great Satan' and another major world oil producer (also see http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/feb/23/russ… to close the Strait of Hormuz through which 30% of the worlds oil supply moves (http://www.eia.gov/countries/regions-topics.cfm?fips=wotc&trk=p3). Oil prices skyrocket and we are essentially paying Russia and Iran a tidy sum for turning our economy into a shambles. We go to the UN but Russia blocks any action against Iran in the Security Council. Now since we have withdrawn from NATO and Russia has dreams of a rebuilt and expansive Russia (http://nypost.com/2014/05/03/putins-vengeful-plan-to-recapture-the-old-russian-empire/, this page is a little over the top) and has plenty of U.S. oil dollars for military spending, Russia sends troops across Georgia, Ukraine, Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Moldova, Armenia. What the heck, let Russia take all of Europe where the EU is our largest trading partner (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_the_largest_trading_partners_of_the_United_States) and critically dependent on imports (http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Energy_production_and_imports) meaning a lot of jobs and a good portion of the U.S. economy.
And so even though the above is on the wild side, it is not that hard to see how it would work and I doubt Russian military strategists would miss such an obvious possibility. Unfortunately, the history of the world is not nations at peace but nations beating each other up at any opportunity. Mention was made of the insanity of WWI, The Great War in Europe where wars had been going on for many centuries. War in Europe was the norm, expected, and planned for. Since the WWII there has been no significant conflict in Europe and I suggest there are three reasons for that: 1) NATO unified Europe's military forces so that it was difficult for any NATO country to mass military forces and attack another NATO country, 2) the Cold War maintained cohesion in NATO against Russia making internal disputes minor against the larger Russian threat, and 3) the buildup of opposing nuclear weapons stockpiles in the U.S. and Russia put a restraint on regional conflicts. And so the 'Legal Framework's stand against NATO while speaking of The Great War's horrors seems a bit confused.
I suggest that the U.N. is an unfinished work in progress that may eventually become what the 'Legal Framework' aspires it to be. In the meantime the U.S. will need to plod along the best it can with as many allies as it can find. It is a bit of a no-brainer that if you have to use military force it is better to have as many forces as you can on your side.
Oh give it a rest man. No body buys for a second your doomsday scenarios.
And, if they should occur, then we can deal with them.
But, as of now, they are BS fantasies and don't justify interfering the Ukraine conflict.
You are a fraud and a troll.
Again, go away.
I do appreciate your well thought contribution to the discussion.
And we all appreciate your trolling masquerading as reasonable commentary.
Russia is no position to attack NATO, including the NATO member Baltic states. Everyone in the world with an ounce of credibility knows that. Russia is fighting to maintain a foothold of its former domain. It is trying to hold on to territory hundreds, if not thousands, of miles east of the Cold War borders. And it is only doing so because of the relentless EU/NATO expansion ever eastward.
Iran has been trying to restore good relations with the USA for decades, and that Great Satan stuff is so old it has whiskers growing on it.
Sure, there is a time and a place for "well thought contributions," but there is also a time and a place to call BS on a BS artist. And that is what you are.
Ron Paul is one of the only politicians who to this day are not corrupt. His own son is a crook for politics.
Agree with you and a very brave politician
Jojo…yes the admin has come out with reason…you are just uneducated. Kiev installed an american right away as the minister of finance. Duh. Its control. PS, keiv is paying and funding Isis. You people just dumb sheep
I fully agree with This article, and Admire Ron Paul for his strong will in defending the truth in Ukraine where the US is clearly the aggressor, pushing NATO to do the dirty work. The US is not only playing with fire but in doing so is puting the whole world at grave risk. Ukraine is at the doorstep of Russia and they are right in defending their ethnic russians. Remember Grenada ? The US invaded that little Caribean island because some US students were threatened ? Remember the cuban missile crisis, the USSR was wrong in putting missiles at US doorstep, the US was right. What is right for US is not for Russians ?
It would be interesting to put the US at the psicologist couch to see why is so much hate against Russia.
Comunists ? Hollywood ? The need of a perpetual enemy ? There is no need to go looking for more trouble there is enough with the ISIS
Another great example of either American libertarian intellectual sloth or outright FSB propoganda.
It's somehow ok to be not antiwar, not antistate if it's Russia I guess. The only defense offered is moral equivalency with the US's actions- as if that's even a libertarian argument.
It's so sad watching American libertarians fall for this.
Let's be clear: Ukrainians are defending their lives and property from Russia and also corrupt oligarchs.
It's not right to cherry pick pictures and play loose with facts to meet Moscows lies. It's also not right to constantly reiterate false conspiracy theory's that start out on Russian State TV. If you are anti war, then support those of us that want to live peacefully. If you won't be supportive, then at least learn how to not be manipulated by state propoganda. I'm sorry to critique, but from reading some posts on this site, some of you wouldn't see a state manipulate you even if you inadvertently took part in it.
Finally, you have to understand how pompous and dumb some things make you look to folks in Eastern Europe (sorry): the US has nothing to do with Ukrainians protecting themselves from Russia, nor the ousting of our corrupt president. Russia has tried to take over Ukraine for half a century. This whole topic comes right from russian propaganda. Yeah you can cherry pick and conspiracy theorize all you want, but the US isn't that capable and this minimizes our effort in wanting more freedom. You know there are people who want freedom and take action in other countries besides America. Would be nice to see that acknowledged.
(Ok FSB, lets hear your spin, see all your links to your "news" sites with articles you wrote, hear some misdirection, moral equivalency arguments, etc. you are getting paid for the number of things you write after all,)
I sure hope we pull out of this one well. There’s no point in making an enemy out of Russia when we’ve got plenty else to do, not to mention the fact that we’re both nuclear armed. Sometimes all these war hawks neocons really make me hope for a god, cuz we’re going to need some real mercy if we have to explain that we started world war 3 over some border dispute. If only propaganda weren’t so efficient in people’s minds, and they were more prone to look for truth. :(
Another great example of either American libertarian intellectual sloth or outright FSB propoganda.
It’s somehow ok to be not antiwar, not antistate if it’s Russia I guess. The only defense offered is moral equivalency with the US’s actions- as if that’s even an argument. Let’s be anti war, unless it’s the super nice Russians killing those nasty Ukrainians. Let’s come up with any reason to justify unmarked soliders creating fake states on other people’s land.
It’s so sad watching American libertarians fall for this. The above article has so many lies it’s sad.
Let’s be clear: Ukrainians are defending their lives and property from Russia and also corrupt oligarchs.
It’s not right to cherry pick pictures and play loose with facts to match Moscows speaking points. It’s also not right to constantly reiterate false conspiracy theory’s that start out on Russian State TV. If you are anti war, then support those of us that want to live peacefully. If you won’t be supportive, then at least learn how to not be manipulated by state propoganda. I’m sorry to critique, but from reading some posts on this site, some of you wouldn’t see a state manipulate you even if you inadvertently took part in it.
Finally, you have to understand how pompous and dumb some things look to folks in Eastern Europe (sorry): the US has nothing to do with Ukrainians protecting themselves from Russia, nor the ousting of our corrupt president. Russia has tried to take over Ukraine for half a century. This whole topic comes right from russian propaganda. Yeah you can cherry pick and conspiracy theorize all you want, but the US isn’t that capable and this minimizes our effort in wanting more freedom. You know there are people who want freedom and take action in other countries besides America. Would be nice to see that acknowledged instead of you using this to gripe against your state.
I see that Russian government owned sites are promoting Ron Paul's position on Ukraine and the IMF.
There is a saying "Walks like a duck, talks like a duck, must be a …".
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thank you for giving permission to comment
Apparently, the disasters in Iraq, Libya and Syria and elsewhere don't provide enough of a thrill anymore. Now we have to go after the big nuclear armed boys to get our war kicks and nuke the planet in the process. And the neocons and their fellow travelers like Hilltrot and others have the nerve to call ISIS barbaric. http://cordasevocal.com/guitarra/curso-de-guitarr…
Great post indeed!
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Ron Paul has excellent, solidly libertarian answers to all these questions. Do his critics?
Ron Paul has excellent, solidly libertarian answers to all these questions. Do his critics?
I agree that the west should not start a war with Russia for Crimea and Donbass.
In fact if I was an ukrainian I would gladly let these regions go!
What is wrong in this analysis is that it accepts the notion of spheres of influence. Georgia and Ukraine pose no threath to mighty Russia. Russian liberrarian position would be to understand why every eastern european nation doesn’t want to be part of a russian empire and instead prefers EU and NATO. Rssian libertarians must oppose the war against ukrainian people. There was no coup in Kiev. Coups are by definition military deposing a government. Yanukovich fled and the parliament elected a new government. Then, in 2014, ukrainian people voted fot pro EU government and president.
In Crimea, it was the opposite, with military forxing a new government.
You should all read what Mises wrote about Russia in Planned Chaos.
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