Andre Damon @Andre__Damon 6 April 2022
In yet another major effort to escalate NATO’s proxy war against Russia, the Biden administration is seizing upon claims by Ukrainian officials of a massacre by Russian forces in the Kiev suburb of Bucha to implement a new round of sanctions and undermine any effort at a peaceful settlement of the war.
“I got criticized for calling Putin a war criminal,” US President Joe Biden said Monday. “Well, the truth of the matter, you saw what happened in Bucha. He is a war criminal.” Biden added, “We have to continue to provide Ukraine with the weapons they need in order to fight.”
The American government, along with the media, proceeds according to the principle: first the conclusion, then the investigation. Biden, who more than one year after the January 6 coup attempt cannot make up his mind whether Trump is guilty of a crime, has already decided that Russian President Vladimir Putin is guilty of “war crimes” in Bucha.
The actual facts, however, do not prove the conclusion. Russian troops withdrew from Bucha right after the Kremlin promised to dramatically reduce its forces in the direction of Kiev in peace negotiations last Tuesday. For days, no significant civilian casualties were reported. On Saturday, Ukrainian forces—including members of the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion—entered the town, and a torrent of reports were unleashed in the Western press about alleged atrocities.
The images shown widely only indicate that bodies were found, but not who killed whom, when and under what circumstances. While video evidence has emerged of Ukrainian forces executing and torturing unarmed people, no similar evidence has emerged for Russian troops.
Given the systematic use by the United States of false allegations of atrocities to justify wars all over the world, and absent clear and convincing evidence, there is no reason to view the claims of a massacre in Bucha as anything other than war propaganda, aimed at enraging the population to justify military escalation.
Even if it were established that Russian troops fired on civilians—and that has not been established—that would not mean that they were acting under the instruction of the Russian government.
In the past 30 years of unending wars—and, of course, one can go back further—the American military has committed countless atrocities: firing on civilians, drone attacks on wedding parties, helicopter assaults on hospitals, the massacre of entire towns. In this time of universal amnesia, is it again necessary to remind everyone that the United States tortured prisoners at Abu Ghraib in the most barbaric manner and then sought to destroy the evidence? Or that, for this reason and many others, it does not even recognize that International Criminal Court before which it insists its antagonists must be tried?