Ukraine: A New Battle in the Old War of the “New Normal” – Off-Guardian 4/9/22


In one sense, I don’t have much to say about the newest chapter in the eight-year-old American war against the people of Ukraine – nothing that you can’t learn from an array of sources as politically diverse as George Galloway and Peter HitchensTariq Ali and John Mearsheimer.

After all, the facts really aren’t complicated. Russia’s recent invasion, far from being “unprovoked” (as shamelessly claimed in mainstream media), follows eight years of the US-backed Ukrainian regime’s deadly shelling of ethnic Russians near the border of Russia itself, in fighting that has killed more than 13,000 civilians in territory Vladimir Putin’s administration pledged to protect long ago.

And that carnage had a fairly obvious cause, too: it was precipitated by the US-supported coup that toppled Ukraine’s elected government in 2014, ostensibly because of human rights abuses but more fundamentally because that government had refused to convert the former Soviet republic into a vassal state of NATO.

The machinations resulting in what is now called the “Maidan coup” destroyed Ukraine’s neutrality between Russia and the West, unleashing in its stead a violent and bigotednationalist movement for which the inhabitants of the Don River basin, mostly ethnic Russians, have been paying with their lives ever since.

That much should be clear to all unbiased readers – like the fact that NATO’s relentless march toward the Russian border (in direct violation of U.S. officials’ promise to Russian leadership as far back as 1990) is the real story of “aggression” behind the manufactured outrage over the Russian “attack” on Ukraine.

But I want to emphasize a different point: that the war hysteria seething in the mainstream press isn’t just about demonizing Vladimir Putin or about dragging the West into another Cold War.

I think we need to focus on its less obvious purpose.

In a very real sense, this propaganda campaign is an extension of the lockdowns imposed on the populations of the Western “democracies” (I add the quotation marks mournfully but advisedly) in early 2020 – and of the attacks on the freedoms of their citizens for which COVID-19 is no longer as sturdy a pretext as it seemed to be two years ago. For most of us, that is really its primary significance.

In other words, the agenda underlying the new Cold War – and mind you, it’s already a pretty hot “cold war” when Atlantic Magazine, formerly a storehouse of liberal antiwar pieties, is chiding the US for not being sufficiently “bloody and brutal” in Ukraine – is not aimed at Russia (despite the US-led economic warfare that mainly targets blameless Russian citizens). It’s not even aimed at Ukraine (notwithstanding obvious US efforts to exacerbate the conflict by flooding the country with weapons).

The real target is us. And whatever news we see from Ukraine in the mainstream press – now, tomorrow, a month from now, whenever – that’s one point we mustn’t forget.

Remember the rapid erosion of free speech throughout the West as the COVID coup started to intensify? Well, that was just a foretaste of the censorship we can expect to see on social media as our opinion-makers shift to a Cold War footing. Remember the marginalization of news sources whose information about SARS-CoV-2 didn’t square with the Official Message?

The senseless banning of RT in many “free” countries since Russia’s invasion suggests how that trend will proceed. Remember the way accurate public comment about Anthony Fauci or Bill Gates became an act of sedition as of 2020?

Today, arbitrary government crackdowns (no warning, no trial, no proof of illegal acts) are already getting worse; war hysteria will further aggravate them.

As for the economy, Reuters is reporting “wild swings in the prices of oil, metals and other raw materials” – surely a harbinger of worse things to come.

In fact, rising consumer prices, shortages, fiscal contraction, increased unemployment – all products of lockdowns – are already showing signs of spiraling out of control as the super-rich fatten off war profiteering and the rest of us are lectured about the “sacrifices” expected of us in the fight against the Russian Beelzebub.

If anyone denies that these things represent the actual goals of the warmongering over Ukraine, I have one question for him: can you please suggest a more persuasive explanation for what otherwise resembles a case of collective insanity among the war promoters?…

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