Why Ukraine Matters for the Left

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    • #490160
      • Total Posts: 11,950


      We should acknowledge absolutely that skepticism toward the kind of righteous sloganeering we’ve seen around Russia’s war is entirely reasonable. Our political class advocates military violence with a regularity and ease that is psychopathic. Our politicians demand others show more courage in the face of Vladimir Putin’s violence than they’ve ever been able to muster in the face of Donald Trump’s tweets. We should not, however, let all of this absurdity blind us to the instances when provision of military aid can advance a more just and humanitarian global order. Assisting Ukraine’s defense against Russian invasion is such an instance.

      The endless military interventions of the last 20 years have engendered a hard-won skepticism not just among the left but among the American people toward the use of force. Our arms dealer–funded think tanks don’t like it, but this is the appropriate default position for a responsible democracy. It’s hard to escape the impression that many in Washington see the war on Ukraine as a boon, something to help both transcend our internal battles and lift U.S. foreign policy out of the doldrums and restore its meaning and potency. This is incredibly dangerous.

      But we should also recognize that the Biden administration is not the Bush administration. The Biden team clearly did not seek this war, in fact they made a strenuous, and very public, diplomatic effort to avert it. Having been unable to do that, they’ve acted with restraint and care not to get drawn into a wider war with Russia while also making clear the stakes of the conflict for the U.S., for Europe, and for the international system. I have not been shy about criticizing this administration where it has failed to uphold progressive principles. It’s a long, depressing, and growing list. But Ukraine is an area where I think the administration is getting it mostly right.

      Yes, it is maddening to see calls for accountability for Putin’s atrocities from the same people who endorsed, defended, and continue to oppose any meaningful accountability for America’s own. It is infuriating to see our political class chuckling about George W. Bush’s recent Kinsley gaffe about “the decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq,” as if it isn’t the confession of a war criminal. But suggesting that Bush’s impunity is a reason not to hold Putin accountable is asking Ukrainians to join Iraqis in footing the bill for our corruption.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #490170
      Cold Mountain Trail
      • Total Posts: 13,289

      “suggesting that Bush’s impunity is a reason not to hold Putin accountable is asking Ukrainians to join Iraqis in footing the bill for our corruption.”

      = bullshit.

      quit funding the war.  quit supplying the arms.

      stop all our lousy wars and actions.  quit killing people.

    • #490176
      • Total Posts: 8,733

      And everything after the “but”, here, is just campaigning.

      From the looks of the current batch of stories, looks like the Dems are gonna run against Putin and Trump again.  And bills introduced in Congress that will never get enacted.  As is the new usual.

      America is not a country, it's just a business. (Brad Pitt, Killing Them Softly)

      "Sometimes when I try to understand a person's motives, I play a little game. I assume the worst. What's the worst reason they could possibly have for saying what they say and doing what they do? Then I ask myself, 'How well does that reason explain what they say and what they do?'" GRRM

      A YouTube comment – we need new conspiracy theories – the old ones have all come true.

    • #490189
      NV Wino
      • Total Posts: 9,532

      I missed that. What an absolute crock of propaganda.

      “As we act, let us not become the evil that we deplore.” Barbara Lee
      “Politicians and pro athletes: The only people who still get paid when they lose.” William Rivers Pitt

    • #490192
      • Total Posts: 9,177

      We should applaud when somebody supplies weapons to oppose US efforts to overthrow “unfriendly” governments.

    • #490206
      • Total Posts: 9,573

      Absolute garbage bs. The Minsk accords were ignored with Biden as VP when it started and ignored with Biden as P.

    • #490210
      • Total Posts: 566
    • #490303
      • Total Posts: 1,517

      What “strenuous, and very public, diplomatic effort to avert” the war?  I followed this story pretty closely and saw no sign of it.

      Destruction is easy; creation is hard, but more interesting.

    • #490307
      • Total Posts: 1,838

      IMHO, the Dems, (well the bulk of our politicians actually), dating back to President Clinton did all but everything in their power to create this war!

      The M.I.C. said jump and while in the air our government shouted in unison; “HOW HIGH???”

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