Putin's Message to Washington on Ukraine
by Stephen Lendman
Putin is a master politician. Well aware of America's imperial designs. Its evil intentions.
Wanting Russia marginalized, contained, destabilized, weakened, isolated, smothered and controlled. Using Ukraine as a dagger against it.
Wanting pro-Western stooge governance replacing him. Beholden to US interests. Enabling them to carve up Russia for profit.
Steal its resources. Exploit it people. Make Russia America's newest colony. Control its vast land mass. One sixth of planet earth's land area.
On January 23, Putin met with permanent Security Council members. He chairs Russia's key national security, defense and foreign relations body.
Ruling United Russia party heavyweights attended Friday's meeting. Including Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Upper house Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko.
Lower house State Duma Speaker Sergey Naryshkin. Presidential Executive Office chief of staff Sergey Ivanov.
Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev. Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Federal Security Service director Alexander Bortnikov. Foreign Intelligence Service head Mikhail Fradkov.
Deputy Security Council Secretary Rashid Nurgaliyev. Permanent Security Council member Boris Gryzlov.
Putin's web site
published his opening comments. Ukraine a major topic of discussion.
Putin knows chances for resolving ongoing Donbas conflict diplomatically are slim at best.
Washington bears full responsibility. Deploring peace. Using its Kiev stooge government for war without mercy. Dirty war. Naked aggression.
Relying on Washington to help resolve things responsibly is futile, Putin believes. Especially when supplying Kiev with heavy weapons.
Training and directing its military. Provocatively deploying US forces increasingly closer to Russia's border. Risking direct confrontation.
Putin said the following in part:
"We are witnessing a dramatic deterioration of the situation in southeastern Ukraine, in Donetsk People's Republic and Lugansk People's Republic."
"(A) week ago…I sent a letter to the president of Ukraine. (A) written proposal to withdraw heavy weapons."
(T)o such a distance from which it would be impossible to fire at populated areas." Complying with "agreements reached in Minsk…"
"(T)his proposal almost completely coincided with the requirements of the official Kiev…So we suggested that weapons and heavy equipment be withdrawn to the line that Kiev authorities themselves consider fair and corresponding to" Minsk.
"Unfortunately, we received no clear answer to our proposal; in fact, we also saw the reverse action, namely the Kiev government has given an official order to launch large-scale combat operations along almost the entire perimeter of contact between the opposing sides."
"The result: dozens of dead and wounded, and not only among servicemen on both sides, but, even more tragically, there has been loss of life among the civilian population, including children, the elderly and women."
"The artillery, multiple rocket launchers and aircraft are firing indiscriminately, directly at densely populated areas."
"All of this is happening to the accompaniment of propaganda slogans about the quest for peace and the search for those responsible."
"The responsibility is borne by those who issue such criminal orders."
"The people who do this should know that there is no other way to solve such conflicts but through peace negotiations and political means."
"We often hear…this is their preferred method of addressing issues, but the reality is quite different."
Putin called for a moment of silence. Honoring Donbas victims. He accused Kiev of issuing "criminal orders."
Referred to Ukraine's president without stating his name. Mentioned "the Kiev government" only once.
Mostly referred to "official Kiev." "(T)hose responsible." "Kiev authorities." Suggesting ruling Kiev officials are illegitimate.
Highlighting the "Donetsk People's Republic and Lugansk People's Republic" conflict in his opening comments suggests perhaps he's heading toward official recognition.
His tone, candor and overall assessment showed growing displeasure with Washington and Kiev's stooge governance it controls.
On January 23, the Financial Times
headlined "Russian banker warns west over Swift."
Addressing Davos Economic Forum participants. Calling exclusion from the international banking payment system tantamount to "war."
"Russia's banks rely heavily on the Belgium-based payments system for both domestic and international payments," said the FT.
One "advisor" calls excluding them "the nuclear option." VTB is Russia's second largest bank.
CEO Andrei Kostin was blunt saying "(i)f there is no Swift, there is no banking…relationship."
"It means that the countries are on the verge of war, or they are definitely in a cold war."
"The next day, the Russian and American ambassadors would have to leave the capitals."
Kostin's comments indicate growing "anger and defiance among the Russian political and business elite," said the FT.
"The more you press Russia, I do not think the situation will change," Kostin stressed.
"We have already created a domestic alternative to the Swift system…and we need to create alternatives internationally."
Sino/Russian unity is stronger than ever. Deputy Russian Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said "(w)e are developing our eastern vector."
Intensified since US-dominated Western imposed sanctions. BRICS countries expressed willingness to help each other.
"Large Chinese investors are coming to us," said Shuvalov. Putin's "pivot to Asia" counters Obama's. Stressing growing political and economic ties.
"(W)e are going into a long crisis situation and it may be protracted," Shuvalov said.
"Russia will survive any hardship in the country." Much like it's done before.
Any pressure to change its policies or political leadership won't work, he stressed.
Russia bashing persists. On Saturday, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini irresponsibly rebuked Moscow.
Ignored Kiev's escalated aggression. Supported, encouraged and implemented by Washington.
Blamed Russia for not reining in rebels. Their legitimate self-defense right.
Saying "(t)his further escalation of the open armed conflict has tragic consequences for a population greatly suffering already for far too long."
"It would inevitably lead to a further grave deterioration of relations between the EU and Russia."
EU nations are their own worst enemies. Partnering with Washington on Ukraine.
Supporting its illegitimate government. Its naked aggression on Donbas. Irresponsibly blaming Moscow and rebels for Kiev's crimes.
Imposing sanctions on Russia harming their own self-interest. Latvia currently holds the rotating EU presidency.
Its Foreign Minister Edgar Rinkevics warned of more Russian sanctions if violence continues.
Major EU countries suggest the same thing. European Council President Donald Tusk said bloc leaders will discuss it at a March summit.
Putin's patience is wearing thin. On the one hand, Poroshenko "sees no alternative" to Minsk ceasefire terms.
On the other, he's increasing Ukraine's military by 100,000. At the time the country is bankrupt.
Deployed new heavily armed combat troops to Donbas. Ahead of launching full-scale war.
Fighting rages. No end of conflict looms. Peace talks are pure fantasy. On Sunday, defense minister Stepan Poltorak said:
"To respond adequately to the actions of the 'terrorist' groups, we are continuing to build up reserves in practically all sectors where combat action is being conducted."
Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) Deputy Parliament Speaker Denis Pushilin called Poroshenko "cynical beyond all limits."
"For us the Minsk process was a question of life for our civilians. For Kiev it was a cover" preparing for war.
"Why do they pretend in the US and Europe that they don’t see Kiev’s aggressive policies? It’s business for them in Washington, and we are being killed here."
Shelling Mariupol Saturday was the latest incident. Killing 30. Injuring scores of others. Kiev's latest false flag. Irresponsibly blamed on rebel fighters.
Fort Russ reported Ukrainian soldiers leaving their Donbas area checkpoints early Saturday. Getting out of harm's way. Ahead of Kiev's attack.
Video evidence shows US forces or Blackwater USA-type (now Academi) mercenaries in unmarked uniforms supporting Ukraine's military. When confronted, speaking in English with clear American accents.
It bears stressing. No evidence whatever suggests Russian troops in Ukraine. Or support for rebel fighters. Plenty shows direct US involvement.
In Kiev, planning and implementing fighting. Supply funding, training and heavy weapons.
Provocatively increasing US forces near Russia's border. Deploying some in Donbas.
Don't expect media scoundrels to explain. Proliferating Big Lies. Suppressing hard truths. Blaming Russia and rebels for Kiev's crimes.
On Monday, Putin addressed students in St. Petersburg. Speaking forthrightly like always. Saying Ukraine's military aims to "achiev(e) the geopolitical goals of restraining Russia."
It's "not an army, but a foreign legion. In this case a foreign (US-controlled) NATO legion, which, of course, doesn't pursue the national interests of Ukraine."
"Unfortunately official Kiev authorities refuse to follow the path of a peaceful solution. They don't want to resolve (things) using political tools."
"They used a brief ceasefire only to regroup their forces, and started military operations again."
At a New Delhi news conference, Obama promised new options "to ratchet up pressure on Russia."
"…I will look at all additional options that are available to us, short of military confrontation, and try to address this issue," he said.
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said Washington has more tools to pressure Russia.
Polish President Bronislaw Komorowsk urged tougher sanctions. Saying "(t)he response of the Western world should be firm."
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier hinted at further sanctions.
Saying "an attack or a broad offensive on Mariupol would be a qualitative change in the situation to which we would have to react.”
Putin's press secretary Dmitry Peskov responded sharply. Calling threats of new sanctions "an absolutely destructive and unjustified course that would eventually prove to be shortsighted."
"Instead of stepping up the pressure on those who refuse to start a dialogue and to solve the conflict in a peaceful way, we hear they want to resume this economic blackmail against Russia."
On Monday, illegitimate prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk issued a statement saying:
Ukrainian cabinet ministers "adopted a decision to recognize an emergency situation at a state level."
"The Ukrainian government has decided to impose the state of emergency in the Donetsk and Lugansk Regions."
Ludicrously claiming it's to ensure civil protection for its people. The same ones Kiev forces murder daily.
Sergey Lavrov blamed Kiev for "derail(ing) the peace process."
"Time and time again, we’re seeing attempts by the Kiev authorities to solve the problem by violent suppression of the southeast."
"These are blind-alley attempts, leading to even more casualties among the civilian population."
"It would’ve been naive to expect that the militia forces (to) remain idle when on the Ukrainian president’s orders populated areas are being shelled."
They're obligated to respond. To protect Donbas residents. To combat Kiev aggression.
Washington and Kiev partner in each other's crimes. One fascist regime supports another.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
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.