Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Reports of Russian Military Action in Ukraine: Fact and Fiction

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Brandon Turbeville
Activist Post

As the crisis surrounding Ukraine intensifies hour by hour and the Anglo-American powers posture themselves as defenders of Ukrainian rights - which they themselves have clearly violated with the recent program of destabilization and overthrow of the Ukrainian government - the Russian side moves forward with what it claims is the necessary and proper methods of protecting Russian interests.

As the crisis continues to unfold, the presentation of the facts, particularly on the part of the Western media is not surprisingly skewed and inaccurate. Indeed, the attempts to paint Russia, whatever its faults, as an imperialist aggressor marching toward world domination have reached farcical levels.

Most bizarre, of course, might be the laughable statement recently made by Skull and Bones John Kerry. In an interview with Meet the Press’ David Gregory, Kerry stated “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pretext.” He also went on to say “You just don’t invade another country on phony pretext in order to assert your interests.”

Of course, invading other countries on trumped up pretexts has been exactly what the United States has been doing with John Kerry’s approval and facilitation ever since 9/11. In fact, John Kerry has proven his worth as a false pretext trumpeter many times over, particularly with the Syrian Ghouta chemical weapons attacks.

Nevertheless, the information currently circulating through the Western media regarding Russia’s actions is heading towards fever pitch. From claims that Russia has seized the entirety of the Crimea to claims that the world power has threatened military action against Ukrainian Navy vessels if they do not surrender, the Western media is doing its best to portray Russia’s military presence as if it were the equivalent of the Nazi invasion of Poland. 
It is, of course, very important to let more rational presentations of the facts prevail, especially when the results of their analysis bear such high stakes.

To begin with, claims regarding armed Russian troops having “seized” and “taken control over” the Crimea and other cities in Eastern Ukraine are greatly exaggerated. While Russia does have ground troops stationed in Crimea as a result of the presence of Russian Naval bases (which have existed in Crimea ever since the 1990s through lease), there has been no credible evidence that Russian troops are acting outside of the naval bases. Reports that they are have come from largely unreliable sources, including fascist members of the newly installed Western-backed Ukrainian government.

What is known is that many areas (the Crimea in particular but also other cities in Eastern Ukraine that are decidedly pro-Russian) Ukrainian militias have been formed in order to reject and resist the imposition of Fascism coming from the recently installed putsch government in Kiev. These militias have been occupying government buildings, patrolling streets, and raising the Russian flag in areas they control. It is important to remember that, simply because an armed group of individuals wearing military style uniforms is seen in a given location, does not mean that they are Russian ground troops.

Such is also the case with claims regarding demands of surrender from Ukrainian Navy vessels and the “surrender” of other ships to the Russian military. Sources such as the New York Daily News reported claims that Russia has demanded that two Ukrainian military ships surrender to the Russian fleet on March 3. Immediately, these claims were picked up by other media outlets and reported as fact and examples of how, yet again, the Russian military was taking aggressive action against Ukrainian sovereignty. However, the sole source of these claims was the Kiev-centered and Western-backed Ukrainian government. Russia has denied the claims and no credible evidence has been presented to prove them to be true.

What is known is that a sizable portion of the Ukrainian Navy and Armed Forces have willingly defected to the Crimean side and, by default, the Russian camp.

As Eric Draitser wrote in his article, “Ukraine, Intervention, And America’s Doublethink,”
In fact, recent days have seen a number of key defections within the military and bureaucracy of Crimea. The newly appointed head of Ukraine’s Navy has officially “defected” from the putsch government in Kiev, instead swearing loyalty to the pro-Russian Prime Minister of Crimea. Other high ranking and influential figures within the military and bureaucratic structures have also refused to recognize the authority of Kiev, choosing instead to remain loyal to Crimea and, de facto, to Russia. In addition, reports have surfaced that Ukraine’s flagship naval vessel, the Hetman Sahaidachny has also defected to the Russian side. These and other defections demonstrate a growing trend in Crimea: de facto independence from Ukraine and a move towards full integration with Russia.
Draitser is also apt to point out that justification of Russia’s actions does, in fact, exist, even under international law as it stands on paper. He writes,
The movement of Russian troops into Crimea has caused an international outcry. Western leaders have been quick to condemn the move as an “invasion”, and assault on “democracy” and international law. However, there are a number of points that must first be examined. First and foremost is the fact that the Russia-Ukraine Friendship Treaty establishes that Crimea, and Sevastopol specifically, represents a strategic national interest for Russia. Moreover, it codifies the fact that the protection of the rights of the people of Crimea is the responsibility of the Ukrainian government. However, what happens when a so called government in Kiev is openly hostile to the region? Who then is responsible for the Russians living there? With Kiev’s putsch government having the backing of the US, NATO and Europe, it seems that no one other than Russia could possibly guarantee the security of Crimea.
Second is the fact that Russia’s naval facilities are undoubtedly of vital national security interest to Moscow. Considering the openly hostile attitude expressed by the new Security and National Defense Committee leadership in Kiev, it seems clear that Russia’s national security interests would be under threat. There is ample precedent in international law justifying Russia moving to protect its forces in Crimea. Moreover, with Ukraine falling into the hands of Nazi elements, a sound argument could be made that, beyond the Crimea, Ukraine poses a danger to the security of Russia proper. Naturally, all of these nuances are left completely out of the narrative of Western corporate media.
Third, and perhaps most important, is the fact that the putsch government in Kiev is absolutely illegal under international law. Yanukovich, whatever negative things could be said about him and his government (and there are many), was never defeated in a democratic election. Rather, he was chased out of the country by a violent mob that has now been consecrated by the much touted “international community” (read US-EU-NATO) as the recognized government. This is a blatant violation of Ukraine’s Constitution, not to mention international law and the accepted principles of modern democracy. With Yanukovich having taken refuge in Russia, and still being the legal President of Ukraine, isn’t it fair to say that Russia is acting as the guarantor of international law, rather than its enemy?
Although the fact that the new Ukrainian government is made up of neo-Nazis and Fascists is no longer debatable, the West continues to move forward with yet another false narrative attempting to portray their “revolutionary” clients as both democracy-loving and peaceful. The facts, of course, are gradually becoming clear to those who were initially fooled by the propaganda blasted across Western television screens. While the vast majority of Americans and Western Europeans continue to view the Ukrainian coup as a victory for freedom, the reality is quite the opposite.

As the Western world, particularly the United States, courts war with the East, the American people must quickly learn the formula behind color revolutions, destabilizations, and the agendas of the world oligarchy before it becomes too late for us all.

Recently by Brandon Turbeville:
Brandon Turbeville is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He has a Bachelor's Degree from Francis Marion University and is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius -- The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real ConspiraciesFive Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, and The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria. Turbeville has published over 275 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville's podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV.  He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.

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