When History Begins – Russia, Ukraine, and the US, by Sheldon Richman

As soon as Russian invaded Ukraine all history concerning those two countries was completely erased for most Americans, replaced by Russia bad, Ukraine good. From Sheldon Richmond at antiwar.com:

Contrary to what hypocritical U.S. rulers and their loyal mass media suggest, two propositions can both be – and indeed are – true:

  1. that Russia has grossly, brutally, and criminally mishandled the situation it has faced with respect to Ukraine, and
  2. that the US government since the late 1990s has been entirely responsible for imposing that situation on Russia.

If you want the fine details, you can do no better than to watch my Libertarian Institute colleague Scott Horton’s excellent cataloging of the irresponsible misdeeds of Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, Donald Trump, and Joseph Biden in this recent lecture. If, after absorbing this shocking record of indisputable facts, you are seething at what the US government has done to squander a historic chance for good relations with Russia, you will be fully justified – and then some. (See also this 2015 lecture by John Mearsheimer, the respected “realist” foreign policy analyst at the University of Chicago.)

To appreciate what bipartisan US foreign policy has wrought, think about 1989 when the undreamt-of virtually bloodless dismantling of the Soviet empire began. At that point humanity was on the verge of a new chapter in which the world’s largest nuclear superpowers would no longer confront each other, holding everyone hostage. Think about that, and then learn how the US government blew it deliberately, despite all the warnings that the consequences would be dire.

How so? By kicking the Russian people in the teeth repeatedly in all kinds of ways when they were reeling from seven decades of communism. If the US government’s intent had been to destroy the chance for this historic turn, it couldn’t have done a better job.

Americans have a funny way of thinking that history began the day of the latest crisis. The politicians and media feed this bad habit. So if Russia invades Ukraine, the only explanation is that he’s power-mad, if not just plain mad. The idea that the US might have set the stage isn’t allowed to be entertained. With social-media magnates sucking up to the power elite, this is serious stuff.

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2 responses to “When History Begins – Russia, Ukraine, and the US, by Sheldon Richman

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