Kiev Declares War
by Stephen Lendman
In mid-April, CIA director John Brennan went to Kiev. He did so quietly. He held secret talks. He met with Obama's new friends.
He came to plot war strategy. He wants Eastern Ukrainian freedom fighters eliminated. He wants them slaughtered in cold blood.
He wants challengers to Washington's imperium crushed. After his visit, coup-appointed president Okeksandr Turchynov announced a northern Donetsk region "anti-terrorist operation."
To "protect the citizens of Ukraine," he claimed. To be conducted "stage-by-stage," he added. So-called "terrorists" are committe freedom fighters.
They're Ukraine's best and bravest. They're putting their bodies on the line courageously. They're doing it for fundamental rights everyone deserves.
On April 19, Turchynov declared an Easter truce. Straightaway he broke it. He violated agreed on four-party conflict resolution terms.
On April 23, he ordered special operations in Ukraine's East resumed. They never ended. Turchynov wants more.
"I demand that security services resume and conduct productive anti-terrorist operations aimed at protecting Ukrainians living in the east of the country," he said.
Putschist first deputy prime minister Vitaly Yarema announced a "relaunch(ed) active phase (of Kiev's) "anti-terror operation."
It's not yet underway, he said. "In the near future, appropriate measures will be taken and you will see results," he added.
"We have obtained the support of the United States, that they will not leave us alone with an aggressor," he said. "We hope that in the event of Russian aggression, this help will be more substantive."
Two bodies were discovered in Slavyansk. One allegedly was former parliamentary speaker Vladimir Rybak.
Self-defense force leader Vyacheslav Ponomaryov called discovered bodies a provocation. "Let's wait for the official identification and forensic medical examination results," he said.
Turchynov lied saying "terrorists who effectively took the whole Donetsk region hostage have now gone too far, by starting to torture and murder Ukrainian patriots."
He lied saying "(t)hese crimes are being carried out with the full support and indulgence of the Russian Federation."
Vice President Joe Biden visited Kiev. He addressed putschist legislators. He repeated one Big Lie after another.
"…(W)e want to be your partner, your friend," he said. "We stand with you. (It's) personal, an emotional commitment, as well, by millions of Americans," he claimed.
He vowed Washington will never recognize Russia's "illegal occupation" of Crimea. He called on Moscow to stop supporting "masked gunmen" occupying Eastern Ukrainian government buildings.
He warned of additional sanctions if "provocative behavior" doesn't stop. He lied claiming Russian special forces operate in Eastern Ukraine.
He claimed they promote unrest. They're involved in occupying government buildings, he said.
He ignored Washington's full responsibility for elevating illegitimate putschists to power. He was silent about neo-Nazis running things.
He said nothing about militant fascist extremism. He turned a blind eye to brazen US-manipulated coup d'etat illegitimacy.
He praised his new friends. He pledged more US help. "You will not walk this road alone," he said. "We will walk it with you."
Deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes lied claiming "(i)nternational order is at stake. Our (Ukraine policy) is targeted at upholding the international order that we believe has been violated," he said.
He stopped short of explaining Washington's full responsibility. Blaming Russia doesn't wash. Sergei Lavrov was clear and unequivocal, saying:
"There is no reason not to believe that the Americans are running the show" in Ukraine. He called Biden's Kiev visit no coincidence. He came at the same time Turchynov announced renewed "anti-terrorist" operations.
"It's quite telling they chose (this) moment," Lavrov added. Biden's visit followed John Brennan's days earlier.
Russia will retaliate if necessary, said Lavrov. "If we are attacked, we would certainly respond."
"If our interests, our legitimate interests, the interests of Russians have been attacked directly, like they were in South Ossetia for example, I do not see any other way but to respond in accordance with international law," he stressed.
Washington's Ukraine agenda relates solely to its imperial interests. It "doesn't show the slightest understanding of what is happening," said Lavrov.
It ignores root crisis causes. It offers irrelevant "ready-made solutions." Moscow will never fail to aid Russian nationals anywhere, Lavrov stressed.
"Russian citizens being attacked is an attack against the Russian Federation," he said.
"Ukraine is just one manifestation of the American unwillingness to yield in the geopolitical fight. Americans are not ready to admit that they cannot run the show in each and every part of the globe from Washington alone."
Russia rejects illegitimate Kiev putschists. "In Geneva, we agreed there must be an end to all violence. Next afternoon, Turchynov declared almost a state of emergency and ordered the army to shoot at the people."
On Tuesday, he ordered "anti-terrorist" operations resumed. Moscow rejects use of force throughout Eastern Ukraine and anywhere.
Separately, Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby announced 600 US troops sent to Poland and Baltic states.
They'll participate in military exercises. They'll continue throughout 2014. Perhaps into 2015.
Deploying US forces sends a strong message NATO allies, he said. Washington's commitment is firm.
"If there's a message to Moscow, it is the same exact message that we take our obligations very, very seriously on the continent of Europe," he added.
"Russia's aggression in Ukraine has renewed our resolve to strengthening NATO's defense plans and capabilities, and to demonstrate our continued commitment to collective defense in reinforcing our NATO allies in Central and Eastern Europe," he claimed.
At the same time, Finland agreed to a NATO Memorandum of Understanding. It involves maintaining Alliance warships and aircraft on its territory.
Defense Secretary Carl Haglund claimed doing so isn't a step toward NATO membership. "(I)n times of crisis, we are better qualified for receiving assistance from other EU countries, the Nordic countries and NATO countries," he said.
On April 22, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said:
"Moral pressure is being exerted and attempts are being made to convince the public that 'the Russians are bad' and they should choose an orientation towards European democracy."
"They are talking about some kind of military-technological assistance, advisors and a larger number of joint exercises."
"NATO pursues the sole task of driving a wedge between Russia and its allies, detaching us from one another."
"We can see that the alliance continues to mount its military presence near our borders."
"They kept telling us about certain camps training soldiers and officers for missions in 'hotbeds' and 'semi-hotbeds.' "
"Now it is not a secret that these military units of NATO will be permanent. Whatever they may be called – bases, contingents or formations – their meaning does not change. A military potential is emerging by the Russian borders."
"If anyone thinks that Russia will rush into a project as soon as NATO crooks a finger at us, this is a profound mistake to make."
Russia bashing continues relentlessly. Big Lies substitute for straight talk. The Washington Post
headlined "In Russia, a Soviet revival grips leadership," saying:
"…(T)he Soviet Union is suddenly alive and well again in the minds of a giddy cohort of the Russian elite. Not the ideology, please - but the gravity, the cold-eyed assertion of power abroad and at home, and the allegiance demanded by the state."
A litany of lies followed. It's standard WaPo practice. A day earlier, its editors headlined
"President Obama, disregarding his own red line, dithers on Ukraine," saying"
Russia "continue(s) to escalate. Its operatives and those they control have not withdrawn from the government buildings they occupy."
"For weeks, Mr. Obama has held back on forceful measures against Mr. Putin’s aggression in Ukraine on the theory that a measured approach matched with diplomacy would yield results."
"The policy has failed. Now Mr. Obama must act - or doom Ukraine to dismemberment."
Fact: Russian democracy shames America's sham version. It's more fantasy than real.
Fact: Russia has gone all-out to resolve Ukrainian crisis conditions responsibly. Washington's strategy is polar opposite. It bears full responsibility for what's ongoing
Fact: US-supported putschists have no legitimacy whatever. Eastern Ukrainians have every right to reject them.
They deserve universal support. Don't expect WaPo editors to explain. Big Lies substitute for responsible reporting.
They proliferate recklessly. They risk escalating things out-of-control. They risk possible East/West conflict.
Washington deplores peace. It rejects diplomatic solutions. Ones agreed to aren't worth the paper they're written on.
Promises made are systematically broken. US strategy prioritizes controlling all former Soviet republics and Warsaw Pact countries.
"Without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be a Eurasian empire." US control is prioritized. It's been so since Washington broke GHW Bush's pledge not to expand NATO East.
No encroachment on Russia's borders would happen provided Moscow let its former republics become independent. Former President Mikhail Gorbachev was lied to.
America's word is never its bond. Former Russian republics Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania are NATO members.
Other Eastern European ones include Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovenia.
Washington wants all remaining Eastern European nations co-opted. It wants them part of NATO.
US bases encircle Russian and Chinese borders menacingly. So-called missile defense systems intended for offense target them.
Neither country threatens America. Positioning strategic weapons near their borders shows Washington's real intentions.
The battle for Ukraine's soul continues. Washington is losing control. Michael Hudson believes it has "no means to follow through."
"The effect is to make the United States look like what Mao Tse Tung called it: a Paper Tiger. Having waved a big stick, the United States and its NATO satellites are now leaving Ukraine broke," he said.
"The aim of prying it out of the Russian orbit has left Ukraine heavily in debt to Russia for arrears in payments for gas (now no longer subsidized) and in danger of losing Russia as its major market for industrial exports."
Business as usual continues. Saber rattling dares Moscow to respond. Cold War 2.0 rages. Recklessness defines US policy. Russia is wrongfully blamed for US lawlessness.
Vilifying its policies persists. Calling them a major danger doesn't wash. Putin prioritizes diplomatic conflict resolutions. Advancing America's imperium prevents it.
One crisis segues to others. Will Ukraine be Washington's undoing? Rodney Shakespeare suggests a possible "turning point in history." US hubris may precipitate its own downfall.
Is America's empire declining? Washington hasn't won a war since WW II. Militants battle for control in Iraq and Libya. US-installed puppet regimes are weak.
Over 12 years of Afghanistan's war resolved nothing. Nor will another decade of fighting if it continues.
Obama's proxy Syria war reflects failure. America makes more enemies than friends. Will Ukraine hasten Washington's decline? Will its grip on world power weaken?
Will current allies lose patience? Will they cut their losses and abandon partnering in America's imperial adventurism? Will Ukraine be the last straw?
Hindsight is the best foresight. The fullness of time alone will tell. Ending Washington's imperial rampaging can't happen a moment too soon. Humanity's survival depends on it.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.