The stench of hypocrisy surrounding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is overpowering.
If the West is opposed to bombing schools, clinics and peoples’ homes why is it that Palestine Action activists are on bail for trying to stop Elbit Systems making killer drones for use in Gaza and Yemen?
Last year I was one of 6 Palestine Action activists who were detained by Police on the way to Elbit’s Shenstone Factory which produces drones, missiles and cluster ammunition (although they deny it). The Jewish Chronicle gleefully reported that ‘Greenstein charged with ‘possessing an article with the intent to destroy property’.
Elbit funded a book which claims that Bulgaria’s army saved the country’s Jews from deportation. In fact Bulgaria’s army deported 11,000 Jews from Thrace & Macedonia to Auschwitz. It was the strength of the Left and the Church which prevented the deportation of Bulgaria’s 50,000 Jews. But Elbit is more concerned about arms contracts with Bulgaria. Who cares if it falsifies the history of the Holocaust.
There was of course no mention as to whether I was about to vandalise a car or a door to someone’s home. No mention was made of the target being Israel’s Elbit arms factory. It was left to readers to speculate. All that mattered was that I had intended to destroy property, which in the Jewish Chronicle’s eyes is far more reprehensible than killing a few Palestinian children. Given that the article was written by ‘Liar’ Lee Harpin it’s surprising that he even managed to spell my name right!
Of course the JC could have reported why the van that I was driving contained red paint to symbolise the blood of those whose lives have been taken by Elbit Systems but given the psychopathic politics of Editor Stephen Pollard that was never very likely.
That ordinary people are horrified by what is happening is in Ukraine is understandable. The destruction and loss of life is horrific.
Putin has fallen into the trap that Biden and the architects of the United States’s policy towards Ukraine laid for him. No one is likely to be happier at how events have turned out than Biden, Blinken and the rest of the Masters of War in Washington. Not that Putin is any angel. His horrific war in Chechniya and his merciless bombing of civilian populations in Syria (which of course the US was also doing) demonstrates that he is no progressive.
Russia should withdraw its forces immediately from Ukraine before there is even worse carnage. Russia had the right to defend the two breakaway republics of Donetsk and Luhansk. It had no right to invade and try to take over the rest of Ukraine. Unfortunately the result of Putin’s actions is that NATO will be strengthened.
Those who want a background to Russia’s invasion should watch John Mearsheimer’s lecture to King’s College students.
He predicted that Russia would not invade Ukraine based on what is rationale, because Mearsheimer comes from the ‘realist’ school of political science. However our leaders are rarely rational.
The anger of Russia against the encroachment of NATO is understandable and the double dealing of the West, including the arming of neo-Nazi militias and their integration into the Ukrainian military, should be a wake up call for everyone.
However you can see it directly via this link to my channel
The overthrow, in what was a fascist coup, in 2014 of the democratically elected President, Viktor Yanukovych (See Oliver Stone’s Ukraine on Fire provides the background.
The hypocrisy surrounding Russia’s invasion is nauseating. NATO has condemned Russia’s use of cluster munitions. But here’s a strange thing. Neither the United States nor Ukraine (Israel and Russia) have signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions. Clearly NATO has no principled objection to their use.
Ilan Pappe has written an excellent article on what he terms the Four Lessons from Ukraine. They can be summed up as:
i. White Refugees are Welcome; Others Less So.
In Israel this is not true. They are doing their best to deter Ukrainian Jews from even coming to Israel but its not going according to plan. Too many of the ‘wrong sort’ i.e. non-Jews have continued coming, probably unaware that in a ‘Jewish’ racial state they are not welcome.
Israel’s Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked, who Moshe Machover in another excellent article Hypocrisy all round describes as ‘Israel’s double-plus version of Priti Patel’ has been wailing that ‘90% of Ukrainian Refugees Arriving Are non-Jews, Situation ‘Cannot Go On’.
You can see Ayelet’s point. The whole point of Israel that it is a state for Jews, not non-Jews. Israel’s Immigration Policy Center likened the current situation to the case of infiltrators [this was a term originally deployed for Palestinian refugees in the 50s who were trying to return by sneaking over the border. Today it is used to refer to asylum seekers from Africa].
The center warned of a “ticking demographic time bomb“. It is important for the Jewish ethnic state to maintain a healthy majority over non-Jews. If 90% of Ukrainian refugees are non-Jews then we might end up with a non-Jewish state. God forbid! Concern for demography is integral to all Zionist parties. That is why a Jewish State is inherently racist. Israeli politicians’ worst nightmare is that one day Israel has a non-Jewish majority (which if Palestinians under occupation were allowed to vote would already exist).
It is therefore perfectly understandable that Israel should balk at taking non-Jewish refugees and diluting the racial gene pool. Shaked therefore came up with a brilliant idea. Those entering with the wrong bloodline would have to pay a 10,000 shekel deposit (£2,500) to guarantee that they wouldn’t outstay their welcome (1 month). Zelensky, despite being a Zionist (he is an Israeli citizen), objected.
ii. The second lesson is that ‘You Can Invade Iraq but not the Ukraine’.
This should be obvious. Only the United States has the right to invade countries to engage in regime change. What the hell does Putin think he is doing in challenging Biden’s monopoly on this kind of thing?
iii. Lesson 3 is particularly important. Although none of us like neo-Nazis there are times when Neo-Nazism Can Be Tolerated.
In 2014 neo-Nazi militia such as the Azov Battalion were essential to overthrowing a pro-Russian President Yanukovych. That is why the United States, Britain and Israel have been arming them and training them.
The CIA has been secretly training forces for Ukraine since 2015. According to Nation magazine in July 2015 Congressmen John Conyers and Ted Yoho drew up an amendment to the House Defense Appropriations bill that “limits arms, training, and other assistance to the neo-Nazi Ukrainian militia, the Azov Battalion.” Yet by the end of 2015, under pressure from the Pentagon, Congress removed a ban on funding the Azov Battalion from its spending bill.
It’s like Al Qaeda. They are our enemy but if they are also the enemy of our enemy they can become our friend. So in the battle to overthrow Assad in Syria Israel under the ‘Good Neighbour’ programme began funding and arming the Al Qaeda front, al Nusra. Israel even provided hospital facilities for their wounded fighters.
Of course Israel is not overkeen on neo-Nazis, despite having a few in the Knesset, but in the world of realpolitik one can’t be too choosy. And they are certainly preferable to communists since these days their main target is Arabs and Muslims (and now Russians) not Jews. Neo-Nazis are now integrated into the Ukrainian National Guard and armed forces, all courtesy of ‘Jewish’ President Zelensky.
iv. The fourth and most important lesson is that Hitting High-rise flats is only a War Crime in Europe.
So we had the ludicrous situation that clips and images circulating about Russian missile strikes were shown by USA Today and others to have been Israeli attacks in Gaza! As Pappe wrote:
USA Today reported that a photo that went viral about a high-rise in the Ukraine being hit by Russian bombing turned out to be a high-rise from the Gaza Strip, demolished by the Israeli Air Force in May 2021. A few days before that, the Ukrainian Foreign Minister complained to the Israeli ambassador in Kiev that “you’re treating us like Gaza” (Haaretz, February 17, 2022)
USA Today reported that
‘While the photo in the post is real, it wasn’t taken in Ukraine. Agence-France Presse photographer Mahmud Hamsimage took the photo May 10, 2021, in the Gaza Strip.
It is an understandable mistake because the Western media has never had a problem with Israeli air strikes on Gaza’s high rise flats. Even scenes from video games have been passed off as being from Ukraine (see here).
The reaction to Russian excuses for their actions are in themselves noteworthy. Last year Israeli airstrikes in Gaza damaged six hospitals, nine primary health care centres, and a desalination plant that supplies clean water to 250 000 people according to the British Medical Journal, quoting the United Nations. Israel justified this by claiming that Hamas was operating there. Naturally the BBC treats this explanation deferentially.
When Israel announces that Hamas is using civilians as ‘human shields’ Western leaders parrot this nonsense. Presumably this was why Israel used White Phosphorous on schools and civilian targets. And The Hill, which boasts that it is ‘read by the White House and more lawmakers than any other site’ carried an article, not on Israel’s targeting of Palestinian civilians but on How Congress can fight Hamas’s use of human shields’ thus buying into Israel’s lying propaganda 100%.
When Russia uses the same excuses then the BBC treats his explanation with the derision they deserve. Double standards are normal BBC fare.
It shouldn’t need repeating but I will for the benefit of those fools who believe that criticism of NATO means that one is a ‘Putin’ supporter. These are the arguments of McCarthyists through the ages. If you criticise any facet of American capitalism then you are a communist or a Russian agent.
There are those who have imbibed this logic with their mother’s milk. They stay glued to the BBC and in case their minds should wander Boris Johnson, at the urging of Starmer, has ensured that there is no alternative news outlet such as RT. Although we are in favour of competition economically, it must never be though that this competition extends to different narratives at the time of war.
We should be grateful to Israel, which at least has had the decency not to condemn Russia too strongly. As Ha’aretz explained there are Three Reasons Why Israel Is Hesitant to Condemn Putin Over Ukraine most notably Israel’s co-ordination with Russia over the bombing of Syria. I imagine that condemning Russia’s attacks on civilians might seem a little like chutzpah, even for Israel’s cynical leaders.
There is also another irony as Pappe pointed out ‘The Ukrainian establishment does not only have a connection with these neo-Nazi groups and armies, it is also disturbingly and embarrassingly pro-Israeli.’
One of Zelensky’s first acts as President was to withdraw Ukraine from the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People – the only international tribunal that makes sure the Nakba is not forgotten.
Zelensky had no sympathy for the Palestinian refugees, nor did he consider them to be victims of any crime. In interviews after the last Israeli bombardment of Gaza in May 2021, he stated that the only tragedy in Gaza was the one suffered by the Israelis.
As Pappe commented, if what Zelensky says is true then ‘it is only the Russians who suffer in the Ukraine.’ But this too is out of Israel’s playbook of ‘shooting and crying’. Even when Israel murders Palestinians they are the real victims. As Golda Meir said:
“We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children. We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us”
I decided to send a letter to the Guardian. Given its letters page is Freedlandised (after Jonathan Freedland, its Zionist gatekeeper) it won’t appear but it’s good to give it the opportunity to print the truth occasionally.
Letter to the Guardian
Saturday, 12 March 2022
Dear Sir or Madam,
The stench of hypocrisy surrounding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is overpowering.
Over two dozen of us are presently on bail for the ‘crime’ of trying to prevent Elbit Systems Ltd., an Israeli arms manufacturer, from producing drones and missiles that are then used by Israel, Saudi Arabia and other regimes to murder civilians.
Indeed one of Elbit’s proud boasts to potential buyers is that its weapons are ‘battle tested’ against civilians.
Since we are all now agreed that bombing civilians, hospitals and other civilian infrastructure is a war crime perhaps I could ask whether this only applies in Europe? Are non-European peoples excepted from the protection of international law?
When Israel ‘mows the lawn’ in Gaza, it has no hesitation in attacking health facilities and high rise tower blocks. The excuse given is that Hamas is located in the facility or that civilians are being used as human shields. The BBC takes these explanations seriously but when it comes to Russia these same excuses are treated with derision. Why?
USA Today revealed on February 24 that a widely circulated image on social media of the bombing of Kharkhiv was in fact the bombing of Gaza. USA Today also revealed that a Facebook post that went viral showing a brave Ukrainian girl confronting armed Russian soldiers was in fact a Palestinian girl, Ahed Tamimi, who in 2017 was gaoled for 8 months for slapping a heavily armed soldier who had just shot her cousin in the head.
And isn’t the continued incarceration of Julian Assange for exposing United States attacks on Iraqi civilians an outrage too far? Or is there something I have missed?
In addition to Navigating our Humanity: Ilan Pappé on the Four Lessons from Ukraine and Moshe Machover’s Hypocrisy all round I am listing a number of statements which embody a range of different perspectives on the war. The Intercept article Putin’s Criminal Invasion of Ukraine Highlights Some Ugly Truths About U.S. and NATO is particularly important.
The fact that Putin is trying to justify the unjustifiable in Ukraine does not mean we must ignore the U.S. actions that fuel his narrative.
In recent days, U.S. and NATO officials have highlighted Russia’s use of banned weapons, including cluster munitions, and have said their use constitutes violations of international law. This is indisputably true. What goes virtually unmentioned in much of the reporting on this topic is that the U.S., like both Russia and Ukraine, refuses to sign the Convention on Cluster Munitions.
The U.S. has repeatedly used cluster bombs, going back to the war in Vietnam and the “secret” bombings of Cambodia. In the modern era, both Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush used them. President Barack Obama used cluster bombs in a 2009 attack in Yemen that killed some 55 people, the majority of them women and children. Despite the ban, which was finalized in 2008 and went into effect in 2010, the U.S. continued to sell cluster bombs to nations like Saudi Arabia, which regularly used them in its attacks in Yemen. In 2017, President Donald Trump reversed an internal U.S. policy aimed at limiting the use of certain types of cluster munitions, a move which a Human Rights Watch expert warned “could embolden others to use cluster munitions that have caused so much human suffering.”
Moscow’s argument is that the U.S. and NATO, under the “pretext” of “humanitarian intervention,” and with no United Nations authorization, unilaterally bombed Serbia for more than two months in 1999 followed by a ground incursion into Kosovo. In February, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov suggested, in remarks at the U.N., that the U.S. had set a precedent with the Kosovo war and that this negated the value of Western critiques of Russia’s plans to attack Ukraine. “I have to recall these facts, because some Western colleagues prefer to forget them,” Putin said in his February 24 speech. “When we mentioned the [Kosovo war], they prefer to avoid speaking about international law.”
On March 24, 1999, ignoring opposition from the U.N. and a sizable number of U.S. lawmakers, the U.S. began what would become a 78-day NATO bombing campaign against Serbia and Montenegro that saw civilian targets regularly struck, 16 media workers killed when a TV station was bombed, and internationally banned cluster bombs used, including on a crowded market, in attacks that killed between 90 and 150 civilians. The U.S. also bombed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, killing three journalists.
While Biden and his allies claimed that the war was necessary to prevent ethnic cleansing and mass killing operations, the overwhelming majority of Kosovo Albanians killed by Serbian forces were killed after the NATO bombing began. Milošević responded to the airstrikes by unleashing his forces and deploying great numbers of both conventional and special units as well as vicious paramilitaries in a “systematic and deliberately organized” mass killing and forced displacement operation. During the bombing, an estimated 700,000 Kosovo Albanians were forcibly displaced. “The NATO air campaign did not provoke the attacks on the civilian Kosovar population but the bombing created an environment that made such an operation feasible,” a U.N. commission on the war concluded.
It should also be pointed out that the condemnation of Russia for its use of horrific thermobaric weapons and cluster bombs would be a tad more convincing if Britain and the United States hadn’t used them in Syria and Afghanistan.
It never ceases to amaze me how many fools are taken in by Western propaganda like for example the detestable Kay Burley.