HomeArticleIt’s Not Okay For Grown Adults To Say The Ukraine Invasion Was “Unprovoked”

It’s Not Okay For Grown Adults To Say The Ukraine Invasion Was “Unprovoked”

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On a recent interview with the Useful Idiots podcast, Noam Chomsky repeated his argument that the only reason we hear the word “unprovoked” every time anyone mentions Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in the mainstream news media is because it absolutely was provoked, and they know it.

“Right now if you’re a respectable writer and you want to write in the main journals, you talk about the Russian invasion of Ukraine, you have to call it ‘the unprovoked Russian invasion of Ukraine,” Chomsky said. “It’s a very interesting phrase; it was never used before. You look back, you look at Iraq, which was totally unprovoked, nobody ever called it ‘the unprovoked invasion of Iraq.’ In fact I don’t know if the term was ever used — if it was it was very marginal. Now you look it up on Google, and hundreds of thousands of hits. Every article that comes out has to talk about the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.”

“Why? Because they know perfectly well it was provoked,” Chomsky said. “That doesn’t justify it, but it was massively provoked. Top US diplomats have been talking about this for 30 years, even the head of the CIA.”

Chomsky is of course correct here. The imperial media and their brainwashed automatons have spent half a year mindlessly bleating the word “unprovoked” in relation to this war, but one question none of them ever have a straight answer for is this: if the invasion of Ukraine was unprovoked, how come so many western experts spent years warning that the actions of western governments would provoke an invasion of Ukraine?

Because, as Chomsky notes, that is indeed the case. A few days after the invasion began this past February a guy named Arnaud Bertrand put together an extremely viral Twitter thread that just goes on and on and on about the various diplomats, analysts and academics in the west who have over the years been warning that a dangerous confrontation with Russia was coming because of NATO advancements toward its borders, interventionism in Ukraine, and various other aggressions. It contains examples like John Mearsheimer explicitly warning in 2015 that “the west is leading Ukraine down the primrose path, and the end result is that Ukraine is going to get wrecked,” and Pat Buchanan warning all the way back in 1999 that “By moving NATO onto Russia’s front porch, we have scheduled a twenty-first-century confrontation.”

Empire apologists love claiming that the invasion of Ukraine had nothing to do with NATO expansionism (their claims generally based on brazen misrepresentations of what Vladimir Putin has said about Russia’s reasons for the war), but that’s silly. The US war machine was continuing to taunt the possibility of NATO membership for Ukraine right up until the invasion, a threat it refused to take off the table since placing it there in 2008 despite knowing full well that this threat was an incendiary provocation to Moscow.

https://twitter.com/RnaudBertrand/status/1498491107902062592?s=20

This is to say nothing of the US empire actively fomenting a violent uprising in 2014 which ousted Kyiv’s sitting government and fractured the nation between its more Moscow-loyal populations to the east and the more US/EU-friendly parts of the country. This led to the annexation of Crimea (overwhelmingly supported by the people who live there) and eight years of brutal warfare against Russia-backed separatists in the Donbas. Ukrainian attacks on those separatists are known to have increased exponentially in the days leading up to the invasion, and it has been argued that this is what provoked Putin’s final decision to commit to invading (which was a last-minute decision according to US intelligence).

The US power alliance could very easily have prevented this war with a few low-cost concessions like enshrining Ukrainian neutrality, rolling back its war machinery from Russia’s borders and sincerely pursuing detente with Moscow instead of shredding treaties and ramping up cold war escalations. Hell, it could likely have prevented this war just by protecting President Zelensky from the anti-Moscow far right nationalists who were openly threatening to lynch him if he began honoring the Minsk agreements and pursuing peace with Russia, as he was originally elected to do.

Instead it knowingly chose the opposite course: continuing to float the possibility of formal NATO membership for Ukraine while pouring weapons into the nation and making it more and more of a de facto NATO member with closer and closer intimacy with the US war machine, and then either ordering, encouraging or tolerating Ukraine’s aggressive assault on Donbas separatists.

Why did the empire opt for provocation over peace? Congressman Adam Schiff gave a pretty good answer to that question in January of 2020 as the road to war was being paved: “so that we can fight Russia over there, and we don’t have to fight Russia here.” If you relinquish the infantile idea that the US empire is helping its good friend Ukraine because it loves the Ukrainian people and wants them to have freedom and democracy, it’s not hard to see that the US sparked a convenient proxy war because it was in its geostrategic interests to do so, and because it wouldn’t be their lives and property getting laid to waste.

Brian Berletic put out a good video a few days ago about a Pentagon-funded 2019 Rand Corporation paper titled “Extending Russia – Competing from Advantageous Ground,” which is exactly what it sounds like. The US Army-commissioned paper details how the empire can use proxy warfare, economic warfare and other cold war tactics to push its longtime geopolitical foe to the brink without costing American lives or sparking a nuclear conflict. It mentions Ukraine hundreds of times, and it explicitly discusses the same economic warfare tactics we’re seeing today like sanctions and attacking Russia’s energy interests in Europe (the latter of which Berletic points out is also being used to bolster US dominance over its vassals in the EU).

The paper even explicitly advocates continuing to threaten NATO membership with Ukraine to draw out an aggressive response from Moscow, saying, “While NATO’s requirement for unanimity makes it unlikely that Ukraine could gain membership in the foreseeable future, Washington’s pushing this possibility could boost Ukrainian resolve while leading Russia to redouble its efforts to forestall such a development.”

President Biden has made calls for regime change in Moscow that can’t even really be called thinly disguised, and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has openly said that the plan is to use this war to “weaken” Russia, which other US officials have told the press is indeed the policy. Comments from the Biden administration continually make it clear that the US alliance is buckling down to keep this war going for years to come, which would fit in nicely with Washington’s known track record of deliberately drawing Russia into military quagmires against US proxies in both Afghanistan and Syria.

So make no mistake, behind all the phony hand-wringing and flag-waving, the US-centralized empire is getting exactly what it wants from this conflict. It gets to overextend Russia militarily and financially, promote its narratives around the world, rehabilitate the image of US interventionismexpand internet censorship, expand militarily, bolster control over its European client states, and all it costs is a little pretend empire money that gets funneled into the military-industrial complex anyway.

Which is why when it looked like peace was at risk of breaking out in the early days of the conflict, the empire sent in Boris Johnson to tell Zelensky that even if he is ready for the war to end, his partners to the west were not.

So as you can see, the notion that this war is “unprovoked” is a fart-brained fairy tale for idiots and children; there’s no excuse for a grown adult with internet access and functioning brain matter to ever say such a thing. If China had backed a coup in Mexico and now had a loyal vassal in Mexico City who was letting Beijing distribute weapons along the US border while continually shelling English-speaking separatists in Baja California who are seeking US annexation, there’s no question that Washington would consider this a provocation and would respond accordingly. You can tell me that’s not true, but we’d both know you’re lying.

But as Chomsky said, the press are still spouting this “unprovoked” nonsense anyway.

“Russia is widely believed to have been taken aback by the West’s assertive and unified response to its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine,” reads a CNBC article published just minutes prior to this writing.

“The diplomatic visit underlines the importance of the Russian relationship for China, even in the face of international blow back against Moscow after its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine earlier this year,” reads a new report from CNN hot off the presses.

“It was an unprovoked attack on a sovereign country,” a source is quoted as saying in another CNN article published a few hours ago.

It is, as Chomsky observed, really freaky how hard they’ve been hitting us with this line every time the invasion of Ukraine is mentioned. It seems like every time it comes up they’re obligated to say it, like how Michael Jackson had a quota for how often MTV hosts were obligated to refer to him as “The King of Pop Michael Jackson” when his name was mentioned.

In the mass media you’re not allowed to talk about the known US/NATO/Ukraine actions which experts have been warning for many years would lead us to where we’re at. You’re only allowed to say Putin attacked Ukraine completely unprovoked, in a vacuum, solely because he is evil and hates freedom. And you have to do it while saying the word “unprovoked” at every opportunity.

Empire apologists get upset when you talk about the fact that this war was provoked because a large amount of empire apologia in 2022 is built around pretending that provocation just isn’t a thing. By some trick of Orwellian doublethink, this concept we’ve all lived our entire lives knowing about and understanding is now suddenly a freakish and ridiculous invention of the Kremlin.

We’re all guilty of doing the things we knowingly choose to do. If I choose to provoke someone into doing something bad, then they’re guilty of choosing to do the bad thing, but I am also guilty of provoking them. I’m not saying anything new here; this is the plot behind any movie or show with a sneaky or manipulative villain, and it’s been a part of our storytelling since ancient times. Nobody has ever walked out of Shakespeare’s Othello thinking that maybe Iago was just an innocent bystander who was trying to help out his friends.

Most of us learn that provocation is real as children with siblings, kicking the other under the table or whatever to provoke a loud outburst, and we’ve understood it ever since. But in 2022 everyone’s pretending that this extremely basic, kindergarten-level concept is some kind of bizarre, alien gibberish. It’s intensely stupid, and it needs to stop.

Empire apologists will also argue that saying Russia was provoked into invading by the US empire is like saying a rape victim provoked her rapist by wearing a tight skirt, or a battered wife provoked her abuser by disobeying him. And as a survivor of multiple rapes and an abusive relationship I must say I find it extremely offensive when people compare blaming the most powerful empire that has ever existed for its well-documented aggressions to blaming victims of rape and domestic violence. The poor widdle globe-spanning empire is not comparable to a rape victim, and if you find yourself thinking that it is it’s time to re-think your entire worldview.

It’s not okay to be a grown adult in September of 2022 and still say the invasion of Ukraine was unprovoked. You’ve got a brain between your ears and an entire internet of information at your fingertips. Use them.

__________________________

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Latest comments

  • I guess that this article is another example of American idiots seeing the World only from their perspective and suppressing anything which is not matching their US idiocy. How it comes that all US commentators are missing important breaking point which is Ukrainian tendency to join European Union after Putin had started treat former USSR countries like his vassals. It was not NATO membership primarily what triggered Putin’s aggression towards UA. For idiots: EU is not a military pact.

    • What a laugh. It’s the US which treats other nations as vassals,how else does one explain the slow motion economic suicide of the EU “to punish Russia”? Your claim that the EU is not a military bloc is what’s known as a distinction without a difference. As Ukraine is neither a NATO member nor EU member,it is irrelevant and your attempt to obfuscate fails pitifully. If EU countries are supplying lethal weapons to Ukraine,they are, then they are a de facto military alliance,no different to NATO.

  • Where are we heading now? In the Book of Daniel, we read, “And both these kings [Great Britain and Russia. In 1882 British troops occupied Egypt. Great Britain then took the role of “the king of the south”. Around the same time, Russia expanded its influence in the region, which previously belonged to Seleucus I Nicator, and took the role of “the king of the north”], their hearts (will be) to do mischief, and at one table (they) will speak a lie; but it will not succeed. Indeed yet (the) completion to (the) appointed time [then a nuclear war happen]. And [the king of the north] will go back (to) his land with great wealth [1945. This detail indicated that after the previous victories Hitler will attack the Soviet Union and will fight to the bitter end]; and his heart (will be) against the holy covenant [Soviet Union introduced state atheism and believers were repressed]; and will act; and go back to his own land [1991-1993. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact. The troops from the Soviet military bases returned to their country]. At the appointed time [he] will return back [Russian troops will return to where they were previously stationed. It also means military actions, a major crisis. Not only the eurozone will break up, but also the European Union and NATO], and will enter into the south [this will be the beginning of the nuclear war], but won’t be as before or as afterwards [these military actions will not lead to a global nuclear war. This war will only begin after the return of the king of the north and the detonator will be an ethnic conflict. (Matthew 24:7)], then the dwellers of coastlands of Kittim [the distant West] will come against him, and (he) will break down [mentally], and will go back.” (11:27-30a) This will be a mutual slaughter and the sword of great power will be used. (Revelation 6:4) Jesus characterized it in this way: “A frightening things both and extraordinary (related to unusual phenomena) from sky powerful will be.” Because of the use of these terrible weapons there will be significant tremors along the length and breadth of the regions [of strategic importance] and famines, and pestilences. Some ancient manuscripts contain the words “and frosts”. The Aramaic Peshitta: “and will be great frosts”. (Luke 21:11) We call this today “nuclear winter”. In Mark 13:8 there are also words of Jesus: “and disorders”. The Aramaic Peshitta: “and confusion” (on the state of public order). It won’t be Armageddon. “But all these things are a beginning of birth-pains.” (Matthew 24:8, DLNT)

  • Totally agree, but some of my friends think I’m a Putin apologist for saying the truth. I’ve made a compendium of ways in which the U.S. and NATO provoked Russia in Ukraine: http://waliberals.org/articles-blaming-the-u-s-for-provoking-or-causing-the-crisis-in-ukraine/2022/02/12/ , and I’m adding this article to it.

    • Excellent work,. I like your work since I currently make over $46K a month by only engaging in legitimate online activity! I am aware that you are now earning a significant sum of cd06 money online with just $38K these are simple operational tasks.

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  • Not to worry folks…….U.S. Empire policy is always “safe and effective.”

    • Hahaha…. Good one. I like that!

  • “That doesn’t justify it, but it was massively provoked.”

    Well, Noam, when in the hell WOULD it be justified? If you’re staring in the face of a planned assault, by multiple tens of thousands of pre-positioned Ukrainian forces, who for many months had been preparing to attack Eastern Donbass and Crimea,… well… the Russians simply got the first punch in. So, yes, they were “provoked”… justifiably so.

  • Quoting Chomsky so much – at this point – seems a little outdated and behind the curve.

    There is no mention – not one – of 30-46 U.S. funded bioweapons labs in Ukraine – financed by the Pentagon with deals brokered by none other than HUNTER BIDEN.

    Russia attacked Ukraine for many of the things mentioned in this piece – but the pressing urgency of this past January was from Russians along the border getting ill in massive numbers – from bioweapons released from Ukraine labs. (Think of it as the Ukrainian bioweapon attack arm of the China-U.S deliberate release of covid).

  • I think something must have been in the air! I was thinking of the concept of an Iago too!

    https://thwapschoolyard.blogspot.com/2022/09/in-shakespeares-othello-villain-of.html

  • it’s branding. same way a toothpaste gets sold by associating the phrase “minty fresh”–“unprovoked Russian invasion”. if they start pushing Zelensky in a green t shirt as minty fresh i’m gonna barf.

  • the US proxy war against Russia began with the unprovoked coup in 2014.

  • When will all the hipster columnists get wise to Tony Cartalucci, aka Brian Berletic and his political activity in Thailand. Constantly reminding us that having a brain and an internet connection should enable us to see the forest for the trees rings hollow to me as an expat living in Thailand when I see my “go to” news and opinion sources fawning over the New Atlas. Berletic, however good he is at geopolitical analysis, speaks against the Thai working class and farmers, the bulk of Thai citizens.

    • I’ve lived in Thailand. Wife is Thai. The poor and working class are incredibly ignorant and no less corrupt than those whoever claim to speak for them. America has used that country as their playground for all sorts of nefarious and evil behavior.

  • American interest in “gravity control propulsion research” intensified during the early 1950s. Literature from that period used the terms anti-gravity, anti-gravitation, baricentric, counterbary, electrogravitics (eGrav), G-projects, gravitics, gravity control, and gravity propulsion.[1][2] Their publicized goals were to discover and develop technologies and theories for the manipulation of gravity or gravity-like fields for propulsion.[3] Although general relativity theory appeared to prohibit anti-gravity propulsion, several programs were funded to develop it through gravitation research from 1955 to 1974. The names of many contributors to general relativity and those of the golden age of general relativity have appeared among documents about the institutions that had served as the theoretical research components of those programs.[4][5][6] Since its emergence in the 1950s, the existence of the related gravity control propulsion research has not been a subject of controversy for aerospace writers, critics, and conspiracy theory advocates alike, but their rationale, effectiveness, and longevity have been the objects of contested views
    https://www.researchgate.net/deref/http%3A%2F%2Fen.wikipedia.org%2Fwiki%2FUnited_States_gravity_control_propulsion_research
    .

  • At the current pace of this war in Ukraine, it will be a very very long war. Not because Ukraine which is at this point after many general mobilizations since February, now is recruiting 16 years old men and women and elderly people who can barely walk long distances. No. Ukraine is the last moments before winter arrives. This war will be continued by Poland and the Baltic States. The ones ones are irrelevant as Delaware is to the USA in size and military projection. A couple of days of fighting and goodbye Baltic nations. Poland has some military capability but it far below what Ukraine had at the beginning of this war. The rest of NATO countries has no military power to sustain any long fight. If the purpose of NATO is to squeeze out the Russian economy in the next years, I’m sorry but I have to say, it will not work.
    For now the ultimate outcome is pretty clear. Europe, UK and US gave all signs to the world that they are the mafia, the ones holding the doors for freedom and independence for nations living in poverty due to the policies coming from the ones who say “we created this game of terrorism, mafia, slavery, drugs, interests. You are either with us or against us.” I think I’ll keep my position against all of them till the end of times.

  • So if three guys stood on the street at your property line and pointed guns at your house and you go out and kick their butt, I guess that was an unprovoked attack.

  • Reply to Newton’s post down below: if a war is not justified when someone who’s sworn to beat the shit out of you for years plans to launch the mother of all offensives on a region where they’ve already killed by proxy 14,000 people in eight years to force it into a position where they can deploy nuclear missiles 600 kms (i.e. a few minutes) from Moscow after training nazis for a whole decade to fight you, when is it justified?

    • A comprehensive and compelling piece by John Pilger was just posted on Consortium News, a piece which makes your points in spades. it also aptly recognizes Caitlin’s wonderful work.

  • The most amazing part of it all is that the bankers have now dropped the masks. Those paying attention have noticed for quite a while that the world is run by Mammon – a blanket word for bankers. They’ve been behind every unrepayable loan that has allowed them to get their hands on land, houses, farms and behind every bomb that’s been dropped for decades but until very recently, they were in the background, on another planet so to speak, in glass towers in Wall Street and the City of London where even the Queen of England has to ask permission from its Lord Mayor to enter.
    Now they’re full-fledged operators. It got really obvious with the Freedom Convoy in Canada where Trudeau had the banks anti-democratically and anti-constitutionally close go fund sites and even accounts to the participants and even the people who supported them financially because they were allegedly far-right extremists, not to say nazis. Yes but it was Trudeau. Was it?
    Now this British reporter I’d never heard of, Graham Philips, who’s apparently been reporting on the ground in the Donbass for years, has had his bank account frozen by Liz Truss when she was Foreign minister:
    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2022/08/graham-phillips-british-reporter-exiled-banking-accounts-frozen-telling-truth/
    Yes but it was Liz Truss. Was it?
    Or have the bankers decided to use their own agency to goad politics where they want them to go, this time beyond the old bribing of politicians, right into the heart of dissent by issuing what was called in the Middle Ages bans from society?
    Anybody who was banned from society then could be killed by anybody else with impunity. Couldn’t get more pariah than that if you tried!
    Now what’s between this guy having been made a pariah by his own nation for running a narrative counter to that of the establishment in general (Johnson, Truss…) and the BBC in particular and his car being shelled by the Ukes through US satellite intelligence? Or given the Darya Dugina treatment?
    Anyway, is it really Liz Truss and Trudeau or is it the other way round? Are the bankers orchestrating this and using the faces of the politicians they bankroll like they’re using the faces of the public figures of the corporate and social media they own to push their agendas?
    Let’s never forget that the CIA was created by bankers!
    Yet this guy who’s no friend of the British conservatives is supported by the American conservatives of the Gateway Pundit. This is rather confusing…
    It wouldn’t be surprising to hear liberals diss him because he’s backed by alleged fascists rooting for Trump.
    You mean the people who support self-proclaimed nazis in Ukraine who want this guy’s head on a pike would do that?

  • Over There
    Over There
    And we won’t be back til it’s over over there

    From some reason that song keeps playing in my head.

    • Only problem is this time it may end up over here too.

      • Quite true. But the narrative they are pushing says it will stay over there this time too.

  • i know someone who’s quite intelligent and progressive and who yet refuses to believe that there is such a thing as a deep state that controls western msm. i’ve referred her to several of caitlin’s articles and other sources in an attempt to set her mind straight, yet she continues to read liberal msm like the ny times and basically fall for it’s propaganda. what can be done about this? caitlin writes about the need to spread enlightenment, but it seems to me that most people, even quite intelligent ones, are highly resistant to the notion that they live in an empire of lies, and have been lied to all of their lives.

    • It is very difficult to change a persons paradym. Even ourselves from time to time.

  • My friend after all is aware of the needle state regarding this lovely freelance technique. (Eg ~663) Sure, I’ve tried the f9 Associate title, I’m presently being paid $33000 monthly, at an equivalent time I’m not paying associate excessive quantity of your time to Associate in Nursing. In addition,
    you’ll do this. ==== http://holdonwork24.blogspot.com

    • Was Paul really the walrus, darling?

  • ‘You’ve got a brain between your ears and an entire internet of information at your fingertips. Use them.You’ve got a brain between your ears and an entire internet of information at your fingertips. Use them.’

    On my website I don’t have any third party software loaded remotely which can be manipulated to slow down my load time anymore. A you tube player should not take a minute to load. Duh

    With the CIA controlling access to information that ‘entire internet’ is not all easy to find. Pro-war comes up in searches at the top. For some the ‘entire internet’ is what they see and they become pawns of empire. They find CNN easy but never find Mint Press news.

    • Click on my NAME to see the change in load time with the You-Tube player removed.

  • Chomsky is right about both covid and Ukraine.

    • Clearly you haven’t paid attention to Chomsky’s position on Covid. There is video easily available where he advocates herding the unvaccinated into a gulag and letting them starve to death.

      • I saw it and he said no such thing.

  • Chomsky says the invasion was massively provoked but unjustified. I don’t buy this moral casuistry that Chomsky sometimes indulges in, at least not in this instance. There is no way the Russians or Chinese are going to allow the U.S. to turn Ukraine or Taiwan into hostile fortresses on their borders. Just look at Kennedy’s reaction when Russia installed nuclear missile bases in Cuba.

    The U.S. invasion of Iraq was based on lies. It was both unprovoked and unjustified.

    The Russian invasion of Ukraine was both provoked and justified, as a response to an existential threat on their borders.

    Great article, as usual.

  • More than occasionally I will speak the great unspoken truths, that this is an American-instigated war, just as the coup of 2014 was an American-fomented putsch. I will also throw in talk about the American dictator, tyrant or warmonger, Clueless Joe Biden. It’s only being fair to the hundreds of thousands (millions?) he has ultimately been responsible for killing, maiming or dispossessing in the long and bifurcating chain of causality. In my book, the US-precipitated high-intensity murderous conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen were most certainly unprovoked by those nations but calling them American wars of aggression or wars of choice was an adequate substitute. It’s confounding though, is it not, that the same Democrats who freely and frequently did berate so-called President Dubya Shrub and his Lord High Necromancer Dick Cheney for starting all these unjustifiable wars of aggression have now fully embraced their belligerent warmongering philosophy and emulate their every contrived lie used to sustain public support for them. It’s almost like the very same amoral killers that gave Dubya his marching orders are supplying the exact same blueprints of war to Clueless (but cantankerous) Joe Biden. Dubya sounded risibly dopish when overtly lying to the public’s face, Clueless Joe just sounds ornery, like a hot-tempered cussed old fool that needs removal ASAP before he makes everything worse.

    • Did you forget someone? Whose last name starts with “T” and ends with “p” and went right along with the putsch in Ukraine? I think that guy’s name belongs among the list of the US presidents who could have avoided this but chose not to.

      • I wasn’t constructing a report card on all recent presidents. Just because I did not mention some while using others as examples to condemn does NOT mean those presently ignored get a pass. I’ve been alive since the first Truman administration. In that time EVERY president from BOTH parties has, at least at times, governed like a reprehensible fascist and greedy opportunist, though I must say they have most decidedly been getting WORSE as the years pass.
        ~
        I am not a Trump apologist, I would not select him as the best we have to fill the office if the choice were all mine, though he is entitled to his constitutional rights in the never ending battles he seems to have with the Democrats who started all manner of removal tactics from the moment he was declared the winner of the 2016 election by the news media.
        ~
        This sorry game of endless impeachment and/or prosecution attempts seemed to become part of the modern landscape starting with Nixon. Since then, it’s been endless tit for tat, no holds barred, allowing the most bombastic of contrived and equally often real accusations of wrongdoing from petty crime to high treason. If you believe all the accusers, including claims of not just sedition, high treason and the like but numerous other peccadillos including murder, rape, pedophilia and numerous financial crimes like insider trading, embezzlement, bribery, tax evasion, extortion, payment of hush money, etc, etc, one must conclude that we have not had a decent and honest man in the office for over a century.
        ~
        The really damning feature is that most of their accusers have had just as shady backgrounds with obvious motives to lie, manufacture and distort reality and proffered evidence beyond all recognition. Perhaps all this gutter sniping would cease if we did away with free speech and the rest of the Bill of Rights. But then, so would legitimate whistle blowing, and construction of a legal defense against any alleged crimes committed by any target of law enforcement.
        ~
        Actually, the latest crimes coming out of the White House and Capitol Hill seem to be an organised suppression of such revelatory speech, allowing criminal insiders to thrive whilst honest truthtellers are persecuted using the justice system. As the whole system is rotten through to the core, please forgive me if I neglect to pre-emptively condemn every Washington politician who comes up for discussion. I know all that sounds funny, but many are quite resigned to the joke by now. If there is any such thing as cosmic justice, it is our corruption as a civilisation that will eventually bring us down. The People–the hoi polloi–do want honesty and justice rather than the filthy dirty parade of fools forced upon us by the string pullers behind the scenes.

        • Absolvo In nomine etc, I still think 45 deserves dishonorable mention because he took part in the current Ukraine nonsense.

          • And what about Biden? Shouldn’t he get the special prize of the jury for not only starting the massive weapons scam but also sending (a very willing) Bojo to torpedo the peace negotiations in April? Not even mentioning how he got the prosecutor investigating Burisma fired, through blackmail, to protect himself and his son! Or how he condoned the kafkaesque Russiagate. Trump, who after all only sent Volo a few Javelins and was harassed for asking him in return to look into the Biden criminal cabal that was making waves in DC – and succeeded in impeaching him through Adam Schiff’s surrealistic shenanigans and bald-faced lies – is a kindergarten sucker compared to that shit!

            • By the way, it’s “te absolvo”.

              • Biden is already on the list, and it’s ti absolvo

  • Well, as you always put it Caitlin, it’s all about the narrative building: it was unprovoked because we say it was unprovoked; everybody who is anybody says it was unprovoked; and if you persist in provoking us with your facts, you may get untwittered and unfacebooked and ungoogled to obsolescence.

    After all, as Rove reportedly said “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality.” Reality created from whole cloth but real enough for the masses. Fly that blue and yellow flag, citizen!

  • The folks reading your article know this, then there are a couple hundred million souls who somehow ‘know’ it’s an unprovoked invasion. The nightly news, the morning show, the afternoon ladies talking show, the financial report – brought to you by Pfizer. Your beloved PBS period drama Lords and Servants, brought to you by rich people’s trust funds and Northrup Gruman and Boeing in case you need a fighter jet. I love the ‘suppose China was building based in Mexico …’ example. That type of argument bumps into the wall of American exceptionalism like the cartoon roadrunner. Fortunately for us, Tom Cruise in such an enlightened being that he wouldn’t make a Top Gun sequel for the cash he doesn’t need, oh wait.

  • The empire doesn’t see it as provocation because of its Messianic Mission interventionism. The US sees itself as having no faults. That must be the reason why they didn’t ratify the establishment of the ICC for instance. If WWIII would happen, it will be the US who’d rather nuke us all than to stomach the fact that the US is not the center of the universe.

  • It never occurred to me to think that this war was unprovoked, when it was blatantly provoked by the U.S. and its NATO puppet. All one need due is to actually read the salient terms of the 2008 and 2015 that were quite obviously broken. It’s so obvious that even Stevie Wonder could see it.

  • Victoria Nuland has the blood of thousands on her hands, but she thinks “it’s worth it”

  • George W. Bush redently condemning the “brutal and unprovoked invasion of Iraq”.

    Seriously.

    As the saying goes, a gaffe is when a politician unintentionally speaks the truth.

  • Dare one say, like Scott Ritter and a few others, that the Ukraine SMO was not only unprovoked but just, at least as just as war can be when not warding off a direct invasion? Can a sufficient level of provocation, short of invasion, justify, not merely mitigate, something as awful as war? This seems to me to be the concrete, complex issue we should be debating, at the risk of dirtying our abstract (sometimes self-righteous?) ethical hands, but even Caitlin ducks it in this otherwise excellent piece.

    • Bullshit.

    • “Can a sufficient level of provocation, short of invasion, justify, not merely mitigate, something as awful as war?”

      What don’t you understand about the possibility of waiting for a nuclear attack to happen before responding to it?

      • Not sure what you mean, Glenn. Are you saying that the SMO is obviously just or unjust? Do you equate the limited SMO with lights-out nuclear war? I don’t think there’s anything obvious about so-called just war theory, which is why we need to debate it, especially in this complicated situation.

        • i hate when someone uses an acronym so obscure that even a google search turns up nothing useful. what is ‘SMO’?

          • Russia calls it a Special Military Operation,did you wander onto this by mistake?

            • Reply to Newton up there for space

  • So, I have seen three nteresting articles. One by US non intelligence saying Russia is running out of munitions. Another by a European diplomat saying NATO is running out of munitions. A third article saying the west cannot account for 70% of the munitions sent to Ukraine due to theft etc. Sounds like a real cluster to me.

  • Europe is in crisis, fuel and food unaffordability crisis, caused by war crisis. Behind the scenes, the Euro is no longer supportable in it’s current form. Central Bank Digital Currency can go out to good Europeans to pay more and more for gas and electricity that they can’t have because there is no supply. The financial crisis can go to infinity-and-beyond through market-mechanisms. The price of gas can be infinite when the available supply is zero.
    Keeping the supply at zero until Europeans accept the “solution” seems to be the plan.
    Liz Truss in the UK can do whatever she is assigned, including nuking Russia, without a second thought. She is thick, mean and narcissistic enough to be just right for this crisis, so the owners chose her.
    https://drjohnsblog.substack.com/p/european-crisis

    • She won’t last for all the reasons you stated. At the first whiff of winter her coalition will collapse.

    • If Truss does request a nuclear attack on Russia, I only hope that the generals and admirals have the guts to refuse – and arrest her for treason.

      Otherwise the Russians will shoot down the British missiles, and then turn the UK into a smoking ruin in about half an hour.

    • By kowtowing to the US and getting involved in every conflict the US creates, Europe will reap the same results of bankruptcy,poverty and social decay. The EU, instead of helping its member states, is an albatross on the necks of the people of Europe.You’d think the UK did the right thing by pulling out but alas, they are back into European affairs big time.

    • Its a real bitch when you have to decide whether to go hungry and be warm or be well fed but cold as hell.

  • Great compilation and admonition Caitlin. Some 90% of the western world needs to hear this scolding.

  • Accuracy is irrelevant to the Borg-like Biden administration, as it was to its Borg-like predecessor, the Obama administration, and the Bush administration and the Clinton administration.

    • Aren’t you forgetting someone?

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