I'm getting sick and tired of neocons arguing that we need to arm Ukraine, and train its troops, and confront Russian nationalism/imperialism/whateverism. They're trying to play us for suckers.
Consider these realities. First, Christopher Booker:
Over Ukraine, I cannot recall any issue in my lifetime when the leaders of the West have got it so hopelessly wrong. We are treated to babyish comparisons of President Putin to Hitler or Stalin; we are also told that this crisis has only been brought about by Russia’s “expansionism”. But there was only one real trigger for this crisis – the urge of the EU continually to advance its borders and to expand its own empire, right into the heartland of Russian national identity: a “Europe” stretching, as David Cameron once hubristically put it, “from the Atlantic to the Urals”.
The “expansionism” that was the trouble was not Putin’s desire to welcome the Russians of Crimea back into the country to which they had formerly belonged; or to assist the Russians of eastern Ukraine in their determination not to be dragged by the corrupt government in Kiev they despised into the EU and Nato. It was that of an organisation founded on the naive belief that it could somehow abolish nationalism, but which finally ran up against an ineradicable sense of nationalism that could not simply be streamrollered out of existence. We poked the bear and it responded accordingly.
Next, Chris Martenson lays it on the line.
As I’ve written previously, the West, especially the US, was instrumental in toppling the democratically elected president of Ukraine back in February 2014. US officials were caught on tape plotting the coup, and then immediately supported the hastily installed and extremist officials that now occupy the Kiev leadership positions.
In short, the crisis in Ukraine was not the result of Russia’s actions, but the West’s. Had the prior president, Yanukovych, not been overthrown, it’s highly unlikely that Ukraine would be embroiled in a nasty civil war. Relations between Russia and the West would be in far better repair.
Russia, quite predictably and understandably, became alarmed at the rise of fascism and Nazi-sympathetic powers on its border. Remember the repeated statements by Kiev officials recommending extermination of the Russian speakers who make up the majority living in eastern Ukraine? Were a parallel situation happening in Canada, for example, I would fully expect the US to be similarly and seriously interested and involved in the outcome.
The only people seemingly surprised by this predictable Russian reaction toward protecting its people and border interests are the neocons at the US State Department who instigated the conflict in the first place. In my experience, these are dangerous people principally because they seem to lack perspective and humility.
There's more at the link. It's well worth reading.
I submit the following points.
- The US has no vital strategic interest in Ukraine worth defending with the blood of our troops.
- There is no possibility whatsoever of the USA sustaining a major expeditionary war so far from our bases, and so near to our potential enemy's, and with such fragile lines of communication.
- Russia is not Iraq or Afghanistan. We could destabilize the former with horse-riding Special Forces operators and bombing raids. We could conquer the latter with lightning strikes and a 'Thunder Run'. We cannot do likewise to the world's second-largest military power.
All those urging active, armed US intervention in Ukraine are seeking to drag this country into a war we can't win. We allow them to do so at our mortal peril.