It is the right of Ukraine to prefer utter destruction and death to neutrality. But it is NOT the right of media and politicians to lie, to pretend that there was no possible peaceful solution.
Rather, Ukraine, knowingly, prefers war, death and destruction rather than a commitment to neutrality. Ukraine, USA, and NATO choose to outright reject Putin’s demand to a neutral Ukraine with assurance for Ukraine to never join NATO.
It is a sad irony that NATO membership was not under serious consideration, still the fight to death is actually happening.
Media and Western politicians lie, pretending there was no possibility of a peaceful solution.
Our focus is the COMPLETE TRUTHFULNESS, FULL DISCLOSURE of all relevant facts. (or likely facts, strongly supported theories). We abhor deception, omission, lies.
Fully informed people can then discuss and agree on the truth. Or they can disagree based on the FULL INFORMATION and the WHOLE TRUTH, not based on misinformation, lies, and brainwashed false world views. Nowadays the Left and Right cannot even agree on what are the FACTS. Remember: #TrueSpeech about #HateFacts is taboo.
- NOTE: we devised measures of media misinformation : both the “obfuscation index” of a single newscast, and resulting long term “brainwashing index” can be measured. Awareness of the facts cited below can be easily tested with questionnaires! Here it is: Media disinformation questionnaire: Russia–Ukraine-war obfuscation-index
Russia’s Ukraine war: FULL DISCLOSURE vs. cover-up by lying media and manipulative politicians
Even for those who honestly believe in the theory about “unhinged” “power hungry” Putin, who maliciously invaded Ukraine and was not open to peaceful negotiations:
COMPLETE HONESTY requires FULL DISCLOSURE of the NATO Expansion – Ukraine Neutrality theory, and more issues. After disclosure, some might explain why they disagree. But no, the media lie by omission. The following issues are simply not reported. (evidence follows further below)
- Experts warned of NATO expansion towards Russian territory. Russia complained about it. That alone makes it newsworthy, makes it MANDATORY to repeatedly mention (if newscasts, and politicians were HONEST). Putin demanded guarantees that Ukraine will not be aligned with NATO. This was outright denied, not even a basis for negotiation. US President Biden et al. outright refused to even discuss Ukraine neutrality neutrality and guarantees that NATO will not enter Ukraine. That must always be mentioned. Putin’s peaceful solution to the crisis is hardly ever mentioned, then news are intentionally misleading. Success of “obfuscation” resulting long term “brainwashing index” can be measured
- Where is the offer by Biden, NATO, and the Ukrainian president to keep Ukraine neutral? Why does that offer not come? Why is that offer discarded, out of hand? And why does Biden lie that 8 years of NATO expansion plus threat of NATO in Ukraine could not be considered a provocation by Putin.
(NOTE: it is their right of Ukraine and NATO to accept the destruction of Ukraine for the right of joining NATO. With our commitment to COMPLETE TRUTHFULNESS, we do NOT concede anyone the right to LIE to the world population and pretend Putin has not been offering a peaceful solution. FULL DISCLOSURE and COMPLETE HONESTY require mentioning Putin wants guarantees, and Ukraine deems these unacceptable and worth a deadly destructive war. For years, Putin did want diplomacy, on his terms.)
- Where is the offer by Biden, NATO, and the Ukrainian president to keep Ukraine neutral? Why does that offer not come? Why is that offer discarded, out of hand? And why does Biden lie that 8 years of NATO expansion plus threat of NATO in Ukraine could not be considered a provocation by Putin.
- Probably Russia will devastate Ukraine, and then Ukraine will become neutral non-aligned. They could have agreed to that without a war.
- Ukraine’s suffering and destruction is for the sole purpose of being allowed to bring NATO to Russia’s door step.
- I repeat, you might disagree, but we demand HONESTY, FULL DISCLOSURE
- Insistence on the god-given right of Ukraine to align itself with any other country is DISHONEST without mentioning that Cuba did not have the right to station Soviet missiles; instead US president Kennedy deflagrated the Cuba missile crisis. People should mention the strong possibility that the US would never tolerate Chinese or Russian military alliances in Mexico, Canada, Cuba, Puerto Rico (after independence), Bahamas, Jamaica, not even in Venezuela.
- “The Russians are bombing civilians”, we are told. Certainly, all war, and even more civilian suffering and death are lamentable. BUT watch is the manipulative cover-up of relevant facts!
- The same speakers proudly announce that the Ukrainians engage in a guerilla war. Combatants without uniforms hiding among Civilians, using civilians as shields, lead to civilian casualties. Media and politicians never connect the dots between the two facts.
- Additionally, where is the Ukrainian army? Carefully separated from civilians? Hiding among civilian buildings, thusly provoking civilian casualties? Again, the hypothesis simply must be mentioned, for full disclosure
- there simply is “collateral damage” in wars. It should be analyzed how much civilian damage is there.
- The heroic resistance of the Ukrainian army is the cause of the civilian bombings. (Of course, together with Putin’s determination, and the West’s denial to give Putin the Ukrainian neutrality).
- We can never cease to mention item (1), Ukraine resists heroically and accepts death and destruction for the noble goal to become a NATO member. Accepting destruction of the country to MAYBE BECOME MEMBER OF NATO. To be honest, that must always be stressed.
Normally, countries become NATO members to avoid war and destruction. In the case of Ukraine, it is the opposite!
Chris Hedges introduces his latest article for Scheer Post, titled “Chronicle of a War Foretold”, with the following:
“After the fall of the Soviet Union, there was a near universal understanding among political leaders that NATO expansion would be a foolish provocation against Russia. How naive we were to think the military-industrial complex would allow such sanity to prevail.”
Imperial narrative managers have been falling all over themselves working to dismiss and discredit the abundantly evidenced idea that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was due largely to Moscow’s fear of NATO expansion and the refusal of Washington and Kyiv to solidify a policy that Ukraine would not be added to the alliance.
Take Michael McFaul, the mass media’s go-to pundit on all things Russia:
Putin’s horrific invasion of Ukraine has NOTHING to do with NATO expansion! Stop please. [Or read the details: https://t.co/YHXPv]
The Russian military has pushed further into Ukraine and now meets stiff Ukrainian resistance. As with so many nadirs in the West’s relationship with Russia, this war, too, was wholly avoidable. Saying this does not negate Russian culpability for this aggressive war.
A major error is made, however, especially in Western media, when Russian policy is seen as peculiarly that of Russian President Vladimir Putin, when Putin’s policies serve Russian ambitions since the tsarist empire.
When the Soviet Union formally collapsed in 1991, the West did not accept its victory over a weak and debilitated Russia. Instead, the West reneged on understandings the Russians have always said were made by the first president Bush to not expand the NATO alliance. Not only did NATO expand to include a reunited Germany but, also, a weakened Russia’s nearby, former Warsaw Pact, allies. At the same time, this originally “North Atlantic” alliance – formed to combat Soviet aggression – launched military interventions in the former Yugoslavia and, in 1999, bombed Serbia, Russia’s long-time Balkans ally.
Why is Ukraine the West’s Fault? Featuring John Mearsheimer
Why Russia attacked Ukraine | Russia Ukraine war Explained
Are you surprised that NATO would openly boast about arming and training thousands of Ukrainian combatants since 2014? What if an enemy of the United States did the same thing in Mexico or Canada. How would the US react? Here’s how Noam Chomsky put it:
“… for Ukraine to join NATO would be rather like Mexico joining a China-run military alliance, hosting joint maneuvers with the Chinese army and maintaining weapons aimed at Washington. To insist on Mexico’s sovereign right to do so would surpass idiocy. Washington’s insistence on Ukraine’s sovereign right to join NATO is even worse, since it sets up an insurmountable barrier to a peaceful resolution of a crisis that is already a shocking crime and will soon become much worse unless resolved — by the negotiations that Washington refuses to join.” (Truthout)
It looks to me like Chomsky thinks arming Ukraine was a deliberate provocation. Which it was. NATO stuffed the country full of weapons, trained its combat troops and paramilitaries, conducted military operations with NATO, ordered their army to the east so they could terrorize the ethnic Russian population, and then– to top it off– threatened to develop nuclear weapons. In short, they put a gun to Putin’s head and threatened to blow his brains out. If that’s not a provocation, then what is? Here’s more from an article at the WSWS:
(NATO chief) Stoltenberg’s historical reference point was not the Russian invasion of Ukraine last month but the 2014 fascist-led coup that turned Ukraine into a proxy for NATO. “Since 2014, [NATO] Allies have trained Ukraine’s armed forces and significantly strengthened their capabilities. They are putting that training into practice now, on the front lines, with great bravery.”
Stoltenberg made no effort to conceal NATO’s massive military buildup of Ukrainian forces over the past eight years. NATO, he said, has been “providing anti-tank and air defense systems, drones, fuel and ammunition. As well as financial aid.”
He went on, “I would like to commend the courage and the professionalism of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. I have met them in Ukraine, and we are all aware that compared to where they were back in 2014, this is a totally different force than eight years ago. The Ukrainian Armed Forces today is much bigger, much better equipped, much better trained, much better commanded. They have much better logistics than they had back in 2014.” (“NATO meets to plot next stage in Ukraine proxy war”, World Socialist Web Site)
>> Here. Stoltenberg confirms it! Putin’s moderation and patience proves costly. His reticence is the reason for the quagmire. Had he invaded in 2014, Putin could have easily overrun Ukraine. (TruthRevolution comment)
Stoltenberg can hardly conceal his elation over the ‘courage and the professionalism” of his NWO army that is acting as cannon fodder in a US proxy-war with Russia. But do the brave Ukrainians that are fighting in this fiasco, know what they’re fighting for?
No, they don’t. They think they’re risking their lives for their country, but, actually, they’re fighting to preserve US global hegemony by annihilating Russia, encircling China and establishing America’s dominance over the world’s most populous and prosperous region of the next century. That’s what they’re fighting for, Washington’s “pivot to Asia”. As the author of the WSWS article admits:
Moscow has once again laid out its conditions for peace negotiations with Ukraine. Russia wants to see genuine political will on Kyiv’s part to engage in dialogue. Moscow wants legal guarantees that Ukraine will never be allowed to join NATO, the Western military alliance, and wants Ukraine to change its constitution to cement this. In the past few months, Vladimir Putin has called for talks with Ukraine several times. Even the United States privately urged Volodymyr Zelensky to be open to talks. But the Ukrainian President has ruled out the possibility of negotiations, as he sees talks with Russia as a compromise and a surrender in front of Moscow.
These are the wrong allies, lying Leftists, but they have the right opinion. Why Cuba does not mention Kennedy who was ready to unleash nuclear war to keep the enemy out of his back yard, or front porch.
You may disagree with that opinion. What is UNFORGIVABLE is the NEWS BLACKOUT about Ukrainian Neutrality option as POTENTIAL solution and prevention of the war. Complete Honesty requires FULL DISCLOSURE of all reasonable hypotheses. After All Putin has been stating this for years, and gave it as a reason for the invasion.
On Saturday, the Cuban Foreign Relations Ministry (Minrex) published a statement blaming the United States for the war in Ukraine, claiming that Russia has demands for “security guarantees” that America ignored, thus necessitating an invasion of Ukraine.
“The American insistence on continuing the progressive expansion of NATO towards the borders of the Russian Federation has led us to this scenario, with unpredictable implications that could have been avoided,” Minrex claimed. “History will demand accountability from the government of the United States for the consequences of an increasingly offensive military doctrine outside of the borders of NATO, which threatens peace, security, and international stability.”
The Cuban Foreign Ministry barely mentioned Ukraine in its statement, other than to “profoundly lament the loss of innocent civilian life” in the country at the hands of Putin.
Granma, the official newspaper of the Communist Party of Cuba, went further in defending Putin directly in an opinion article published on Sunday.
“Russian President Vladimir Putin has demonstrated firmness before the American and NATO plan to surround his country with arms and military forces,” the column read. “Putin has assured that he was led to make this decision as a last resort left to him by the West.” […]
Solemn histories have their place in any exposition of geopolitical strategy (“Sum of fears is the ‘DragonBear’ “, February 28). Gray Connolly has provided the context of Russia’s imperial past, so others might draw perspectives on what’s happening in Ukraine. Hitler’s 1941 attack on the USSR in World War II detonated the Russian consciousness. So it is not irrational for Moscow to fear any military threat from the West, whether overt or implicit. Russia is determined to exercise suzerainty over Ukraine and to re-incorporate it in a newly invented Russian empire. Yet respect is a mutual construct. More pawns are now scattered on the global chessboard. NATO. No action, talk only? The future of its Baltic state members will test it. It is not as though the West does not understand Russia. As a former diplomat, who served during the Cold War, I join with many of us who know all too well Russia’s new ambitions to reclaim a retro nationalism. – Mike Fogarty, Weston (ACT)
Historians have often criticised World War I victors for being intolerably humiliating to Germany, exacerbating Hitler’s rise. Likewise, when Mikhail Gorbachev lost the Cold War, he suggested bringing Russia closer into a pan-European family of nations, dialling down the NATO v Warsaw Pact antagonism. Instead, the West squandered this window of opportunity and expanded NATO closer to former Soviet borders, despite pledging not to. None of this is to excuse Vladimir Putin’s appalling invasion, just to understand, however unhinged his justifications, the cycles of history. When victors over-humiliate the vanquished, the seeds are sown for the next war decades later. – Edward Grieve, Woolloomooloo
Sixty years ago, the US nearly went to war over Russia’s arming of Cuba with lethal weapons. Nuclear war was averted by bilateral negotiations and the Russians removed the weapons. Neither side wanted World War III. From Putin’s words and demeanour, he is not bluffing when he talks of the consequences of the West’s continued arming of Ukraine, just as the US was not bluffing 60 years ago over Cuba. It is time for leadership in the West to do what Russia did in the 1960s, to step back and put the fate of the world above political point-scoring and military adventurism. – Di Henderson, Yass
00:00 UK, Germany and France do they have a role in Ukraine vs Russia war?
01:42 Does the EU or Nato have a role in Ukraine vs Russia war?
04:57 Who decided to expand NATO?
07:39 Are we moving from an US Unipole to Multipolar world?
10:28 Is China a threat to Russia?
12:14 Can Ukraine, as a buffer state, lead to peace?
17:06 Did Nato promise not to expand to the east?
19:40 Who decided to arm Ukraine?
23:49 Why do Europeans and Americans hate Russians so much?
26:40 Can libral international order with USA on top survive?
30:14 Does Putin suffer from a personality disorder?
32:02 Nato needs Russia and its threats to continue its existance?
36:30 Does having nuclear weapons lessen wars?
LATEST – Please Share – US vs Russia Can Ukraine not decide its own future? https://youtu.be/oR-yS6kULXw
President Zelensky’s UN Security Council Address – https://youtu.be/aa7Ypfq38dY
Ukraine war & the solution Prof. John MEARSHEIMER – https://youtu.be/GdO11hgdtTQ
Should Ukraine be broken up? Prof John Mearsheimer Q & A – https://youtu.be/40K5UH84w44
Latest analysis by Prof Mearsheimer March 2022 – https://youtu.be/23DTE5sHaD8
Russia vs Ukraine – USA to blame? Prof John Mearsheimer | March 2022
Is the west to blame for War on Ukraine?
https://youtu.be/kUiFh1QQn3c?t=297 | Causes of Russia Ukraine conflict: Conventional Wisdom
https://youtu.be/kUiFh1QQn3c?t=555 | The West’s Responseto Russia Ukraine conflict: So Far
https://youtu.be/kUiFh1QQn3c?t=870 | What Should Be Done to resolve Russia Ukraine conflict?
https://youtu.be/kUiFh1QQn3c?t=950 | Consequences (Russia Ukraine conflict)
The Causes and Consequences of the Ukraine Crisis
Professor John Mearsheimer, Distinguished Service Professor in Political Science and Co-director of the Program on International Security Policy at the University of Chicago
He assesses the causes of the present Ukraine crisis, the best way to end it, and its consequences for all of the main actors.
A key assumption is that in order to come up with the optimum plan for ending the crisis, it is essential to know what caused the crisis. Regarding the all-important question of causes, the key issue is whether Russia or the West bears primary responsibility.
The Kremlin intended Russia’s intervention in Ukraine to be limited to Donbass. The purpose was to drive out the Ukrainian and neo-Nazi military forces that were occupying parts of the two independent republics and shelling the residents. Had Russia intervened eight years previously, the intervention could have been limited and quickly concluded. But the Kremlin, afflicted with hesitancy and false hopes for the Minsk Agreement, waited until Washington had raised, armed and trained a Ukrainian army. https://www.unz.com/proberts/ukraine-update-11/
Of Related Interest
They’re not consistent at all, they are polar opposites. In fact, Zelenskyy appears to be operating off a different script altogether. Take, for example, his complete unwillingness to address Russia’s minimal security concerns. Did Zelensky know that Putin had repeatedly said that Ukraine’s membership in NATO was a “red line” for Russia? Did he know that Putin has been saying the same thing over-and-over again since 2014? Did he know that Putin warned that if Ukraine took steps to join NATO, Russia would be forced to take “military-technical” measures to ensure their own security? Does Zelensky know that NATO is Washington-controlled Alliance that has engaged in numerous acts of aggression against other sovereign states. Here’s a short list of NATO’s accomplishments:
- The destruction of Yugoslavia
- The destruction of Afghanistan
- The destruction of Libya
- The destruction of Iraq
- The destruction of Syria
Does Zelensky know that NATO is openly hostile to Russia and regards Russia a serious threat to its expansionist ambitions?
Yes, he knows all these things. Still, he publicly expressed his interest in developing nuclear weapons. What is that all about? Imagine the problem that would pose for Russia. Imagine if a US-backed puppet, like Zelensky, had nuclear missiles at his fingertips. How do you think that might impact Russia’s security? Do you think Putin could ignore a development like that and still fulfill his duty to protect the Russian people?
And why did Zelenskyy agree to allow shipment after shipment of lethal weaponry to be delivered to Ukraine if he sincerely sought peace with Russia? Did he think that Putin was too stupid to see what was going on right beneath his nose? Did he think he was normalizing relations by expanding his arsenal, threatening his own people, and jumping through whatever hoops Washington set out for him?
From the earliest days of the invasion it was clear that the western world was being smashed with a deluge of propaganda unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. In the first full month of the conflict, American network TV stations gave more coverage to the war in Ukraine than any other war that the US has been directly involved in, including Iraq and Vietnam. Literal Iraq war architects were some of the first pundits sought out for analysis of the conflict by the mainstream press, and calls for insane escalations against Russia succeeded in pushing the Overton window of acceptable debate in the direction of warmongering extremism and away from support for diplomatic solutions.
And this was all easily piped into mainstream consciousness because the way had been lubricated by years of Russia hysterica resulting from the mass scale psychological operation known as Russiagate. America’s most dangerous confrontation in generations just so happens to have been preceded by years of media-generated panic about that very same country, despite the Ukraine invasion having ostensibly nothing whatsoever to do with the conspiracy theory that the Kremlin had infiltrated the highest levels of the US government. Heckin’ heck of a coincidence right there, buddy boy.
“It’s quite interesting that in American discourse, it is almost obligatory to refer to the invasion as the ‘unprovoked invasion of Ukraine’. Look it up on Google, you will find hundreds of thousands of hits. Of course, it was provoked. Otherwise they wouldn’t refer to it all the time as an unprovoked invasion.”
~ Noam Chomsky
This quote, from an interview last month with Ramzy Baroud, is self-evidently true and should be pointed out more often.
People don’t go adding the same gratuitous adjectives and modifiers to something over and over again unless they’re trying to manipulate how it’s perceived. If your neighbor always referred to his wife as “my wife who I definitely never beat,” you’d immediately become suspicious because that’s not how normal people talk about normal things. We don’t say “round Earth” or “the Holocaust that totally happened,” we just say the words, because their basic nature is not seriously in dispute and we’ve got nothing invested in manipulating or obfuscating people’s understanding about them.
The need of the political/media class to continually bleat this phrase “unprovoked invasion” over and over again is itself a confession that they know they’re not telling the whole truth. It’s the imperial propaganda version of this classic tweet:
Chomsky outlines many of the provocations the US/NATO power structure engaged in prior to the conflict, which many western analysts spent years warning was coming as a result of the provocative actions that were already being taken by the empire. The invasion could easily have been prevented with a little diplomacy and some low-cost, high-reward concessions ike honoring the Minsk agreements and providing assurances of neutrality for Ukraine, but ….
“Ukrainian entry into NATO is the brightest of all redlines for the Russian elite (not just Putin). In more than two and a half years of conversations with key Russian players, from knuckle-draggers in the dark recesses of the Kremlin to Putin’s sharpest liberal critics, I have yet to find anyone who views Ukraine in NATO as anything other than a direct challenge to Russian interests.” William Burns, US ambassador to Moscow writing to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, 2008
Don’t they know that from 2015-on the CIA has been training far-right Ukrainian paramilitaries and extremists (neo-Nazis) to conduct an insurgency against Russian forces that were going to be lured across the border in an attempt to create an “Afghanistan-type” quagmire?
Don’t they know that Washington has been planning to use Ukraine as a battering ram against Russia in order to spread its military bases across Central Asia (to encircle China) for at least the last 8 years? Don’t they know that the Ukrainian army had been shelling residential areas in the area inhabited by ethnic Russians for 8 days before Putin was forced to send in his troops?
Don’t they know that Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has admitted that the war started 8 years ago when the legitimate government was toppled? (He told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria, “I made a point that the war in Ukraine has been lasting for 8 years. It’s not just some special military operation”)
Don’t they know that –if Zelensky had maintained the status quo and Ukraine had remained a “neutral” country– the war never would have begun?
Don’t they know our own Director of the CIA called NATO membership for Ukraine the “reddest of red lines” for Russia?
Don’t they know that NATO’s eastward expansion is, and has always been, a material threat to Russia’s national security? Aren’t Russian mothers and children deserving of the same safety and security provided to American mothers and children or should we insist that they live with Washington’s combat troops, tanks and nuclear missiles pointed at them across the border? Aren’t they entitled to live their lives without NATO’s gun pointed at their heads or Washington’s dagger put to their throats? […]
And if we are right, then we must logically assume that the war began before the Russian invasion (which was launched a full week later) We must also assume that Russia’s alleged “unprovoked aggression” was not unprovoked at all but was the appropriate humanitarian response to the deliberate killing of civilians. In order to argue that the Russian invasion was ‘not provoked’, we would have to say that firing over 4,000 artillery shells into towns and neighborhoods where women and children live, is not a provocation? Who will defend that point of view?
No one, because it’s absurd. The killing of civilians in the Donbas was a clear provocation, a provocation that was aimed at goading Russia into a war. And –as we said earlier– the OSCE had monitors on the ground who provided full documentation of the shelling as it took place, which is as close to ironclad, eyewitness testimony as you’re going to get.
This, of course, is a major break with the “official narrative” which identifies Russia as the perpetrator of hostilities. But, as we’ve shown, that simply isn’t the case. The official narrative is wrong.
Notice the clever way that Reuters frames its coverage so that the claims of the Ukrainian military are given as much credibility as the claims of the Russian Foreign Minister. What Reuters fails to point out is that the OSCE’s report verifies Lavrov’s version of events while disproving the claims of the Ukrainians. It is the job of a journalist to make the distinction between fact and fiction but, once again, we see how agenda-driven news is not meant to inform but to mislead.
As the Soviets quit Eastern and Central Europe at the end of the Cold War, they imagined that NATO might be dissolved alongside the Warsaw Pact. Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev insisted that Russia would “never agree to assign [NATO] a leading role in building a new Europe.” Recognizing that Moscow would view the continued existence of America’s primary mechanism for exercising hegemony as a threat, France’s president Francois Mitterrand and Germany’s foreign minister Hans Dietrich Genscher aimed to build a new European security system that would transcend the U.S.- and Soviet-led alliances that had defined a divided continent.
Washington would have none of it, insisting, rather predictably, that NATO remain “the dominant security organization beyond the Cold War,” as the historian Mary Elise Sarotte has described American policy aims of the time. Indeed, a bipartisan foreign policy consensus within the United States soon embraced the idea that NATO, rather than going “out of business,” would instead go “out of area.” Although Washington had initially assured Moscow that NATO would advance “not one inch” east of a unified Germany, Sarotte explains, the slogan soon acquired “a new meaning”: “not one inch” of territory need be “off limits” to the alliance. In 1999, the Alliance added three former Warsaw Pact nations; in 2004, three more, in addition to three former Soviet republics and Slovenia. Since then, five more countries—the latest being Finland, which joined as this article was being prepared for publication—have been pulled beneath NATO’s military, political, and nuclear umbrella. […]
Washington’s message to Moscow could not have been clearer or more disquieting: Normal diplomacy among great powers, distinguished by the recognition and accommodation of clashing interests—the approach that had defined the U.S.-Soviet rivalry during even the most intense stretches of the Cold War—was obsolete. Russia was expected to acquiesce to a new world order created and dominated by the United States. […]
Anatol Lieven, the Russia scholar and then Moscow correspondent for the Times of London, concluded that “moves toward NATO membership for Ukraine would trigger a really ferocious Russian response,” and that “NATO membership for Ukraine would be regarded by Russians as a catastrophe of epochal proportions.” Quoting a Russian naval officer, he noted that preventing NATO’s expansion into Ukraine and its consequent control of Crimea was “something for which Russians will fight.”[…]
Typifying the egocentrism that governs the U.S. approach to the world in general and relations with Russia in particular, not one of these future military and intelligence leaders has thought to connect, even in this past year, what they believe would be Washington’s response to the hypothetical situation in Mexico with Moscow’s reaction to NATO’s expansion and policy toward Ukraine. When the analyst has drawn those connections, the military and intelligence officers have been taken aback, in many cases admitting, as the analyst reports, “ ‘Damn, I never thought out what we’re doing to Russia in that light.’ ”
But America’s determination to uphold its own sphere of influence is more than hypothetical, as the Cuban Missile Crisis demonstrated. […] But Russia’s deployment of missiles in Cuba was hardly unprovoked. Washington had already deployed intermediate-range missiles in Britain, Italy, and, most provocatively, in a move that U.S. defense experts and congressional leaders had warned against, on Russia’s doorstep in Turkey. Moreover, during the crisis, it was American actions—not Russian or Cuban ones—that would be considered aggressive and illegal under international law. [Why Are We in Ukraine?]