The second victim of war seems to be the ability to think clearly.
â€œPutin is waging a war in Ukraineâ€ wrote one journalist in our most mainstream paper recently, as if it was just self-evident. The combination of deep demagogy and shallow thinking we experience in our â€œenlightenedâ€ countries today will stun future historians. Not even the rebels started any war. They armed themselves in self-defense, but didn’t harm anyone. The war of aggression was launched by the Ukrainian leaders when they chose to meet their Russian speaking fellow countrymenâ€™s grievances with deadly violence.
When the Peopleâ€™s Republics in eastern Ukraine were proclaimed Putin was from the very beginning hesitant to engage more actively with open support. That this stance has been upheld is clearly to show that the leaders in Russia are using their brains; thus concluding that there was nothing but problems for Russia to be gained from this uproar. Meanwhile we in the west avoided thinking, maintaining that Putin was about to invade Ukraine, an incredibly cretinous fantasy considering that such a step immediately would have engaged NATOâ€™s entire military force which is some 15 times stronger than Russiaâ€™s. For us to believe such a thing Putin not only has to be stupid, he also has to be suicidal.
It could be claimed that a state has the right to use violence against armed insurgents, even domestic ones. Yes, but thatâ€™s in the first place why the Ukrainian leaders are the ones whoâ€™s waging a war. And secondly itâ€™s a completely senseless way of trying to solve the real problems, unless the goal is to carry out total ethnic cleansing, driving everyone in the southeasternÂ area out of the country, which of course is impossible.
Another consequence of war is obviously a hazardous shortsightedness. Ukrainians in the western and eastern parts of the country will have to live together in the future to come. For every day that passes the violence and the dead bodies on both sides will increase the hatred and thus aggravate the obstacles for aÂ functioningÂ agreement. The only solutions can come from negotiations, something that Putin has been pushing for tirelessly, others not.
Media in Sweden is almost unanimously propagandistic in favor of the attacking Ukrainian forces, spearheaded by neo-Nazis. No moral judgments are expressedÂ about this so called militiaâ€™s ruthless killing of innocent civilians. No qualms are uttered whatsoever about the violent methods the Ukrainian leaders have chosen when met by understandable grievances from people in the southeast, which saw a government in Kiev formed after a coup and under supervision by US diplomats. The fact that this government included some neo-Nazi members and started by passing a law suppressing the Russian language hardly makes it inconceivable that the pro-Russian citizens in the southeast began to fear for their security and their possibilities to form their own lives.
The way our media palliates the Nazi connection is quite remarkable. Right now I happen to read Antony Beevorâ€™s 1000-page book on World War II, published in 2012. In his view the Ukrainians were the ones most willing to help the German Nazis to liquidate Jews. He particularly mentions a method of extermination which he attributes to the Ukrainian Nazis. They simply locked people up in a house and sat it on fire. Those who tried to escape were killed. This shows an eerie resemblance with the horrible Odessa murders recently, where the same method was used.
Antisemitism has a long tradition in Ukraine, as has Nazi influences. The Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera is still honored by large groups wearing swastika-like symbols. One obvious reason for anti-Russian sentiments may have been Stalinâ€™s horrible atrocities against the kulaks, costing more than three million lives. Beevor also mentions propaganda spread by Kremlin blaming the Jews for Ukraineâ€™s hardship. The roots being whatever they are, in todayâ€™s Ukraine Nazism should be harshly condemned by democratic nations. In Anglo-Saxon (and Swedish) MSM this whole embarrassment is met with almost complete silence. To get a somewhat balanced approach to the Ukrainian issue these days, one has to look for a German newspaper (or The Nation, for instance).