As has become a staple in the schizophrenia on my newsfeed, two posts come up in diametric opposition. Surprise, surprise in the Bizarro World of the western media echo chamber being confronted in any way by forces outside the Bubble. One is a Times fluff piece claiming the Ukie army has "found its footing" against the rebels, a creepy fascist-fellating homily about how brainwashing kids into killing their brothers and sisters is somehow a good thing. The other is from a Russian language post on Pravda.ru, explaining that the Kiev junta is finally forced to admit publicly to mass desertions from its army.
Flag of the Donetsk People's Republic
(image by DNR)
In any rational view, the NYT perspective should be seen as the hollow, meaningless, triumphalist and bombastic bullshit one has come to expect from the Paper of Record. The Gray Lady is the most effete and 'philosophical' (read: full of sh*t) of the Big Three. And let's recap the breakdown of these loudmouth Dogs of Empire: WaPo is for those who think they run the world; WSJ is for those who actually *do* run the world; and NYT is for those who think they *should* run the world
So it's completely understandable that they would fall into the trap of hyperventilating misinterpretation that followed Strelkov's masterly decision to break out of Slavyansk and fight a better fight. [For more specifics on how badly mischaracterized this brilliant move is see here [ http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.co.nz/ ] I'm not downplaying the political significance, but it is obviously being overplayed here while the real story is on page 3 (or, in an obscure Russian language publication). The junta is hardly in good shape. The fascists have to admit (po-russki, at least), that soldiers are defecting en masse. Nothing drains morale like getting blasted off a hill. Behind the headlines, an Azov Batallion lost 238 of 320 soldiers overnight. It's a stupid war for a stupid cause, and it is doomed to eventual failure, though perhaps not today. Why people turn against it is largely immaterial. Do I really give a sh*t whether Americans actually grew a conscience and thought slaughtering millions of innocent people in Southeast Asia was wrong? Well, yes I do, I guess.. but my point is that my opinion on the matter is irrelevant. It was the body bags that turned people against the war.
Fascist repression and genocidal bombing are, sadly, not new--and certainly not new weapons in the arsenal of US imperial hegemony. And the forces that have trained, paid for and committed the wholesale slaughter of children, the raping of nuns and unmitigated marauding from Central and South America to Africa to Southeast Asia to the Middle East are certainly unlikely to change their spots simply because they find themselves to be 'among white people.' In fact, absent the communist bogey man, the western hatred toward Russia is revealed for what it is--yet another outburst of unleashed White Supremacy against the Other, in this case the Dirty Slavs that were Hitler's nemesis. And lest you succumb to the argument that supremacy is controlled by skin tone, I need only remind of my own ancestors, the palest people on earth, vilified as the ni***rs of Europe for centuries and subjugated as England's first colony, destined to be her last.
It needs to be said that the actual nazis never had much compunction against killing civilians, as the massacres in Odessa, Mariupol and elsewhere already show. As for the notion that conscripts are getting successfully groomed to kill their own people, I can disagree with some of my comrades with whom I regularly talk about these issues without resorting to the kind of unnecessary ad hominem characterizations of romanticism and fifth columnism that seems to have become rampant on social media given the fog of war (the Fogosphere). I think it's a bit of (unspoken) wishful thinking on the part of the sociopaths at the NYT. A fascification may be partly responsible... but in large part I think this is a simple artifact of the war phase, which I mentioned back in a column in early May. I feared then that the increasingly armed character of the resistance would make it impossible for the continuation of the scenes we have witnessed of civilians stopping tanks with their hands and columns of troops turning around. I was wrong--it continued like this for much longer, much to my astonishment. After all, an enemy in uniform who is shooting at you is far simpler to shoot at--once the lines have been drawn, much less brainwashing is necessary than to run over crowds with a tank. The air war in southeast asia was perhaps the ultimate triumph of this hands-off fascism of slaughtering an innocent enemy you can't see.
Instead, we see a beleaguered junta clinging to a fantasy of 'victory' at having finally taken a small town after months of siege with overwhelming 'superiority,' while letting the entire besieged army with all of its equipment escape unscathed. Wackjob nazis are shooting at each other in its capital, making it completely unsafe for ordinary people. Mass defections and mass casualties continue unabated, and its shrill cries and ridiculous goals are getting more insane by the day: "We will retake Crimea!" "We will rejoin Europe!" "We'll launch pre-emptive nuclear strikes!" Good luck with all *that!*
It would be crazy not to be downhearted, and the Russian long game--even if it is successful--is incredibly sad, perhaps even cynical, for hundreds of thousands of people across Novorossiya. The junta is imploding, they have no hope of taking--let alone holding--Donetsk, and their cynical use of cannon fodder will make them even more hated. Meanwhile, even the July heat can't chase away the looming shadow of a coming gasless winter; Merkel is in China looking for her own piece of the same Eurasian pie that Putin just snagged, hugely pissing off her American patrons; and the French are howling about the unfairness of the dollar system. At the risk of sounding glib: (Long) Game. (Long) Set. (Long) Match.
(c) 2014 Daniel Patrick Welch. Reprint permission granted with credit and link to http://danielpwelch.com. Political analyst, writer, linguist and activist Daniel Patrick Welch lives and writes in Salem, Massachusetts, with his wife. Together they run The Greenhouse School (http://www.greenhouseschool.org). Translations of articles are available in up to 30 languages. Links to the website are appreciated at danielpwelch.com. Welch has also appeared in numerous television and radio interviews, and can be available for comment and analysis as his day job permits.