The Hypocrisy of the Warmongering Western States

August, 2022 A

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has placed the Russian Federation on center stage, with all eyes looking at the bear’s next steps. The Ukrainians are being bolstered by the European Union and the United States, under the guise of protecting national sovereignty and promoting democracy. The blatant disregard for the damages the West has caused around the world and the sudden interest in the well-being of a white nation is a testament to what the West actually cares about: their domination of global affairs. There was no international outcry for the atrocious war crimes committed in Iraq. There were no sanctions for the dozens of coups committed across Africa in the last 40 years. Decades of imperialist action from the Cold War to today go unnoticed in the upper echelons of the international community, but when a select few states ‘violate’ the rules, all hell descends upon them. Now, granted, this is not a justification for the invasion of Ukraine, nor any other acts that violate human rights treaties, but there must be accountability for all atrocities and equal responses in kind. 

Supporting Ukraine

Since May of 2021, there was tension between Russia and Ukraine, and chances were that the Russians would pull a stunt similar to what they did in 2014. I wrote an article in August listing invasion as the least likely option Putin would go forward with, and rightfully so, given the malaise felt around the world. The United States alone has provided a 40 billion dollar aid package to Ukraine, including security assistance, economic support, and other assorted aid. Roughly, the United States and its allies have given 135 million dollars a day to the Ukrainian government since February 2022, to be used to fight the Russians in any way they can. This includes new military hardware from the United States, including the procuring of former Soviet hardware from Eastern NATO allies in exchange for modern American technology. The sheer amount of aid in such a short amount of time is staggering, not to mention the 9.77 billion dollars given to Ukraine between the period of 1993-2021. 

The support given to Ukraine by the West has bolstered its defense against Russia, in an effort to “see Russia so weakened that it would no longer have the power to invade a neighboring state”, as stated by US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. The power of money in this conflict and modern weaponry is apparent, but so are the forces of national security interests of the global hegemon. But, the hypocrisy of support and a history of supporting nations that solely benefit American national interests goes as far back as 1945.

Ukraine is a Flawed Democracy at Best

Contrary to popular belief, the Ukrainian government under strongman Volodymyr Zelensky is far from the democracy the US and the EU are claiming it to be. According to the Freedom House Global Freedom Status, which grades countries’ levels of freedom from zero to one hundred, Ukraine has a score of 61, similar to that of Serbia, Tunisia, and Indonesia. Ukraine is still riddled with corruption, with officials as high as Zelensky himself being implicated in the Pandora Papers and having alleged offshore money laundering schemes he profited from while in office. There have also been suppression of pro-Russian media outlets, Russo-Ukrainian businessmen, and the banning of opposition parties supporting Russia, or leaning towards the Russian sphere of influence. Essentially, this would be similar to Boris Johnson banning anti-Brexit parties or the Iraqi government quashing the rights of Kurdish political parties. The sheer amount of support for a quasi-democracy, and even the potential to join the EU, the hub of democracy, is astonishing, considering the skepticism of Serbia and Turkey into joining the same organization. 

While there are various reasons for why these states are not a part of the EU, the principle remains the same, that a primarily white European country facing invasion is a better candidate than Turkey, which has been a buffer to Soviet, and now Russian, aggression since 1948. The democracy that the Biden administration stands to defend is nothing more than a smaller version of the Putin regime, with limited opposition rights, strongman politics, and suppression of minorities.

The War in the East

The most prominent area in the world that the United States wishes to exert its interests further is Asia, specifically in the South China Sea and the Korean peninsula. The People’s Republic of China has already established key facilities in Djibouti, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, and controls a significant amount of African and European economies. Many nations in the region are far from democratic, and yet the United States continues to offer military support, providing legitimacy for the regimes to maintain their current styles of government. Turning back the clock, however, the United States has a long tradition of supporting authoritarian regimes in the region, such as South Korean despot Park Chung-hee, Taiwan strongman Chiang Kai-shek, Indonesian dictator Suharto, and South Vietnam’s short-lived dictatorship under Ngo Dinh Diem. These leaders enjoyed broad American military support to further the fight against the expansion of communism, in exchange for the US turning a blind eye to their human rights abuses and violent suppression of political and civil liberties.

 As the Cold War came to a close, many of these states liberalized, but the United States still maintains relations with the regimes of Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, and Malaysia in an effort to combat Chinese influence in the region. Furthermore, if we look back in time, the United States intervened and invaded nations that were contrary to its own interests, notably during the Korean and Vietnam Wars, and to a lesser extent its involvement in Afghanistan. There was no outright global outcry for the numerous atrocities committed by American forces in Vietnam, such as the infamous uses of Agent Orange, napalm, and the dropping of more bombs than during the entirety of World War Two, most of which were targeted towards civilians. There was never the sanctioning of American weapons manufacturers, generals or the political elite who had explicit knowledge of these atrocities, and many are often forgotten in the pages of history. The lack of accountability is appalling, considering that we have launched a crusade against the Russians, who are doing the exact same in the name of their interests, but here we see accountability, because once again, it fits the Western narrative.

The Middle Eastern Quagmire

The buck always stops with the Middle East, and it exposes the pure hypocrisy of the criticism towards the invasion of Ukraine. The United States and its European allies have used the Middle East as their playground since the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, dividing the riches of the region and quashing any form of dissent that arises. A rebellion in 1941 replacing the Hashemite monarchy with a popular fascist party was summarily crushed by British forces, and the supposedly pro-Axis Shah of Persia (not even proven to be pro-Axis) was ousted, and the country divided. The Americans also intervened in Iran, ousting popular leader Mohammad Mosadegh, and funding the monarchies of the Persian Gulf against radical socialist elements. The United States took a renewed interest in the region following the collapse of the Soviet Union, attacking Iraq in an effort to “protect Kuwaiti sovereignty” and prevent the development of weapons of mass destruction. 

Furthermore, the Americans bolstered their support for Israel, which by extension supported the illegal occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, and the Golan Heights, and the numerous atrocities committed therein. The straw that broke the camel’s back, in the most literal sense, was the 2003 invasion of Iraq, destabilizing a multi-ethnic country without foresight in occupation or transitional governance. Countless war crimes were conducted by the invading American forces, such as the terror of Abu Ghraib, the Haditha and Nisour Square massacres, and countless illegal rapes. There were also hundreds of illegal drone strikes conducted during the war, as well as into the late 2010s, killing thousands of innocent civilians. Further war crimes and overall lack of foresight created failed states in Libya, Somalia, Yemen, and Syria, ushering in one of the largest migration crises since the Second World War, causing billions of dollars in damages, and ruining the lives of millions for decades to come. Only a few countries issued diplomatic protests against the war in Iraq and the other incursions in the region, notably Jacques Chirac of France, but even that was child’s play. There were no sanctions, no banning of diplomats, no mass deliveries of weapons to Iraq. Actually, many chose to support the invaders, with a slim pretext for invasion which was later vehemently debunked. Does that sound remotely familiar to you? 

Now, this is not saying that the Russian propaganda machine is correct, but the principle is there, why does one country have the power to breach sovereignty, but others do not? Or, when other nations violate international law, why is their retribution swift and deadly? Furthermore, many in the Middle East support Vladimir Putin’s war as a blow against Western dominance, which has decimated the region, hence the support in the United Nations through abstentions and neutrality, which only supports Russia’s war. With all this in mind, it has become clear why the West has unified against Russia in this case, whereas most of the nations that have been under the rule of the West see Russia as a bulwark against Western neoliberalism and intervention.

Why Russia has a small point

Now this is where I lose people, partially because it sounds like a pro-Russia rant. But, there are rational reasons for Russia to invade Ukraine, and it was predicted by Western intelligence weeks, if not months in advance. The Russians made their intentions clear, that a shift of Ukraine towards the West would result in dire consequences, and they were not bluffing. Now, this is not a defense of the invasion, but a defense of acting in the interests of Russian national security. The United States also acts in its own national interest, and this started with the implementation of the Monroe Doctrine, which ensured that no imperial power would involve themselves in Central and South America, or face American intervention. The Americans directly intervened in almost every Latin American state, creating banana republics and puppet states across the region. The United States also directly overthrew leftist governments during the Cold War, and attempted to invade, or invaded Cuba, Nicaragua, Chile, Haiti and Panama. But of course, since the United States conducted these egregious violations of sovereignty, all is well to the United Nations. After all, the headquarters are in New York City, and the organization is largely bankrolled by the US. But when the Russians act similarly, all hell breaks loose. 

So the anti-NATO rhetoric and the abstentions of the majority of countries who, ironically, had US interventions, should not be surprising to the American people. Even take the hypothetical scenario of Russia or China engaging in supplying Mexico with weapons to retake the Southwest, or assisting Canada in conquering the Northern United States. The mere presence of adversarial forces in the Western Hemisphere would send the Pentagon into a frenzy, and the United States would take remedial action almost immediately. Take, for example, the attempted invasion of Cuba in 1961, and the direct support of the Contra rebels in Nicaragua in the 1980s, which were both governments with local support, but with aid from the Soviet Union. The Russians in this case are acting in a similar policing action, with a state in their hemisphere that they see is caving to an adversary, and have taken action against it, yet in this case the entire world went against them. The main reason: the fear of angering Uncle Sam. 

Caving into Russia-Past Mistakes

Now let us take a step back, and see how the European Union, America’s crucial ally, became so dependent on Russian hydrocarbons in the first place. Former EU Prime Minister Gerard Schröder is the main blame for European dependence on Russian oil and gas, and it came down to his admiration for Putin and the desire to line his pockets with Russian gas contracts. There was a proposal in the early 2000s about bypassing Russia entirely, and building a pipeline from Austria, down through the Balkans, Turkey and into the Caucasus and the Middle East. Austria and Southern Germany would serve as a hub for gas to flow into Italy, Switzerland, France and the Low Countries, and leave Russia high and dry. From articles written in 2009 and 2014, Europeans were well aware that Schröder’s  plan to maintain dependence on Russia would lead to using gas shut-offs as a bargaining chip. And they were right, the Russians have now shut off over 40% of its gas shipments to Europe, and EU politicians are worried the Russians will completely shut off gas supplies in the winter months. The West set up Russia to pursue its expansionist policies with a strong hand, and Putin is not bluffing. He has already secured deals with China and other nations to continue oil and gas sales, and has secured assurances from Iran and Saudi Arabia to keep oil production low, another blow to the West. The United States and Europe have isolated themselves from the international community, and blame Russia for it. 

There is no hypocrisy that EU and American politicians are solely to blame for feeding Russian aggression when it could have been nipped at the bud, even before the 2014 invasion of Crimea. Now, it is simply too late to amend the damages we have allowed Russia to inflict, and there appears to be a new coalition forming between authoritarian states and Western liberal democracies. America is on the brink of recession, and Europe could be left shivering in another Russian winter. Ultimately, contrary to popular belief, Putin played his cards right, and it is only a matter of time before he gets what he wants.

Made by Chen Xia/GT

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