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Wed Apr 15, 2015, 02:40 AM

Why We Must Return to the US-Russian Parity Principle

Why We Must Return to the US-Russian Parity Principle

The choice is either a New Détente or a more perilous Cold War.
Stephen F. Cohen
April 14, 2015
The Nation Magazine

A pro-Russian separatist stands in front of damaged buildings following a shelling by
Ukrainian forces in Donetsk, 2014. (Reuters/Sergei Karpukhin)

(The text below is a somewhat expanded version of remarks I delivered at the annual US-Russia Forum in Washington, DC, held in the Hart Senate Office Building, on March 26.)

When I spoke at this forum nine months ago, in June 2014, I warned that the Ukrainian crisis was the worst US-Russian confrontation in many decades. It had already plunged us into a new (or renewed) Cold War potentially even more perilous than its forty-year US-Soviet predecessor because the epicenter of this one was on Russia’s borders; because it lacked the stabilizing rules developed during the preceding Cold War; and because, unlike before, there was no significant opposition to it in the American political-media establishment. I also warned that we might soon be closer to actual war with Russia than we had been since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.

I regret to say that today the crisis is even worse. The new Cold War has been deepened and institutionalized by transforming what began, in February last year, as essentially a Ukrainian civil war into a US/NATO-Russian proxy war; by a torrent of inflammatory misinformation out of Washington, Moscow, Kiev and Brussels; and by Western economic sanctions that are compelling Russia to retreat politically, as it did in the late 1940s, from the West. Still worse, both sides are again aggressively deploying their conventional and nuclear weapons and probing the other’s defenses in the air and at sea. Diplomacy between Washington and Moscow is being displaced by resurgent militarized thinking, while cooperative relationships nurtured over many decades, from trade, education, and science to arms control, are being shredded. And yet, despite this fateful crisis and its growing dangers, there is still no effective political opposition to the US policies that have contributed to it—not in the administration, Congress, mainstream media, think tanks, or on campuses—but instead mostly uncritical political, financial, and military boosterism for the increasingly authoritarian Kiev regime, hardly a bastion of “democracy and Western values.”

Indeed, the current best hope to avert a larger war is being assailed by political forces, especially in Washington and in US-backed Kiev, that seem to want a military showdown with Russia’s unreasonably vilified president, Vladimir Putin. In February, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande brokered in Minsk a military and political agreement with Putin and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko that, if implemented, would end the Ukrainian civil war. Powerful enemies of the Minsk accord—again, in both Washington and Kiev—are denouncing it as appeasement of Putin while demanding that President Obama send $3 billion of weapons to Kiev. Such a step would escalate the war in Ukraine, sabotage the ceasefire and political negotiations agreed upon in Minsk, and provoke a Russian military response with unpredictable consequences. While Europe is splitting over the crisis, and with it perhaps shattering the vaunted transatlantic alliance, this recklessness in Washington is fully bipartisan, urged on by four all-but-unanimous votes in Congress. (We must therefore honor the 48 House members who voted against the most recent warfare resolution on March 23, even if their dissent is too little, too late.)


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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 05:22 AM

1. "unreasonably vilified Putin" ????

He admitted it!
He admitted on russian TV that russian forces invaded Crimea!
He admitted that it was done to secure russian interests in case of an overthrow of Yanukovich!
He admitted that russian forces invaded a neighbouring country, yet again... But who cares about Georgia.

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Response to DetlefK (Reply #1)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 09:13 AM

2. We have been through these arguments many times.

It has been well established that he was REACTING to an artificial overthrow. The current government is all fucked up because they are MINORITY rightwing and paramilitary politicians. They NEVER could have come to power except in a coup (with our help and support).

And it will continue to be fucked up because they will not stick to a political solution because if things get anywhere near "normal" and calm and they have a non disinfranchised / semi rigged democratic vote there THEY WILL LOSE POWER.

As for Crimea, that was also a REACTION to a constitutional crisis and at this point everyone knows the truth that the vast majority there wanted this. To argue otherwise is simply partisan posturing.

Our media is tabloid and dishonest and knows who pays their checks (advertisers and politicians election advertising money and billionares). Those who are paying attention know that when it comes to matters of war and geopolitics they edit heavily.



At Project Censored, we examine the coverage of news and information important to the maintenance of a healthy and functioning democracy. We define Modern Censorship as the subtle yet constant and sophisticated manipulation of reality in our mass media outlets. On a daily basis, censorship refers to the intentional non-inclusion of a news story – or piece of a news story – based on anything other than a desire to tell the truth. Such manipulation can take the form of political pressure (from government officials and powerful individuals), economic pressure (from advertisers and funders), and legal pressure (the threat of lawsuits from deep-pocket individuals, corporations, and institutions).

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Response to newthinking (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 09:54 AM

3. And you should stop censoring yourself.

How do you know that it was an "artificial overthrow"?
It makes sense?
That's not good enough. That's way, WAY not good enough. Not if you know how to use logic.
It not enough that an explanation makes sense. It has to be the only explanation that makes sense.

Stop confining your thoughts to comfortable notions.
Open your eyes, wannabe-hero.
The world is more complicated than your romantic "Rebel Alliance vs Empire" point-of-view.

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Response to DetlefK (Reply #3)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 10:06 AM

4. Because I have been following the political parties in Ukraine for more than 10 years

and you?

Speaking of "opening eyes". It is not that hard to go beyond the narrative and find out the picture it paints of what is happening in Ukraine is not at all accurate. Ukraine is now a police state.

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Response to newthinking (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 10:08 AM

5. Ukraine (witch) hunt for "domestic seperatists"

From http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026488184

This is from a Kiev Ukrainian news site. Unfortunately machine translation. Incredibly brave journalists, one of the few surviving and resisting news outlets in Ukraine.Their employees are beaten and threatened (One incident just happened yesterday, link after this article). 7 years in jail if you are convicted.

Ukraine has declared the hunt for "domestic separatists"

Waiting denunciations of neighbors, teachers in higher education,
even school teachers having the "wrong" views

Link to Vesti Story


Promised a corridor of shame

The search began dissent and universities. Organization "Odessa lustration committee" conducted a survey of the history department students ONU. Mechnikov. Despite the fact that the action has caused considerable resentment wishing to lay teachers has found: "In separatism there are several names," - told us the head of Constantine lyustratorov Tskhovrebashvili. What happens to the "separatists" in universities, illustrates the case of Olga Zagulskoy - Associate Professor, Department of Geography of the Lviv University. Ivan Franko, who is a pacifist blog "Facebook" and LiveJournal.

"February 9, at the first day of school after the holidays, a student showed me a request from the student union committee - say, if you write articles? After that, I got an anonymous woman who said that she intends to bring me for the anti-war sentiment - literally - told Zagulskaya "news." - After this, the uniform persecution on the part of students (Feb. 24, a teacher would be subjected to humiliating passage on the "corridor of shame", and from colleagues. " Future Zagulskoy seem a foregone conclusion: geological faculty dean Vladimir ments by Bilaniuk informed us that on June 30 ending her contract.


Vesti newspaper distributers attacked by Right Sector

Link to the Story

Yesterday, the readers of the newspaper in Kiev could not get the next issue of "Vesti". Early in the morning on two subway stations - "Heroes of Dnepr" and "Vasylkivska" - people in the form of the "Right Sector" attacked the vehicles transporting edition. They illegally dumped newspapers and taken away in an unknown direction. One of our drivers, they beat and threatened to set fire to cars. Mediaholding lodged a complaint with the police demanding to find and punish those responsible. Recall, this is not the first attack on the newspaper. In July, masked thugs smashed the editorial office in the city center. It is obvious that all these actions are intended to intimidate editors. In vain. We are continuing and will continue to publish a newspaper.
Promised to flog the car

According to our promoters at the station "Heroes of Dnepr" attackers overloaded packs with newspapers in the van without license plates, and in the car with the symbols of the "Right sector." Near the metro station "Vasylkivska" attackers in two cars (Mazda number AA 2979 Jeep Nissan and matt black with an open booth) is also part of the selected newspapers. In this case, one of the attackers struck in the face of the driver, transporting "Vesti". "They are watching us since Towers - says Sergey Yurikov driver. - On "Vasylkivska" we stopped, there were two people at first, and then pulled up another 6. One of them pounced on me, they say, who are you, and what's speakers. Went verbal sparring and in the end he hit me. They said - if you do not stop to carry the paper, machine, or blow up or burn. When they left, they said, God forbid that once again I see. Like, we warn you for the third time will not, "- said the driver. By the arrival of the police the attackers fled.

Also, there was an attempt to attack the promoter at the station "Dorohozhychi": the guy who distributes newspapers at the crossroads of the car drove up with the numbers of AA 2731 RH logo and "right quadrant." Since all of the newspaper's promoter has already distributed, the robbers camouflaged selected branded bags, and threatened to demand information where it is still handing out newspapers.

Later, there was a video on the web, how the process of stealing the newspaper. People in the form of overload pack in your car, and readers who had gathered around, outraged. People ask - who has given such permission to select the paper on which people in a brand new black uniform said: "The People's Court! I am the people! ".

Link to the Story

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Response to newthinking (Reply #5)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 10:11 AM

6. Ukraine Appoints Top Fascist to Key Military Advisory Post

From http://www.democraticunderground.com/1016119695

Ukraine Appoints Top Fascist to Key Military Advisory Post
Right Sector Brags they Will Now Be Funded by Military
by Jason Ditz, April 08, 2015


Failed fascist presidential candidate Dmytro Yarosh has been appointed to a top military advisory position in Ukraine this week, with officials saying he will serve as a link between the military and ultra-nationalist volunteer battalions in the civil war.

Yarosh only mustered about 1% of the vote in the last election, and since then he’s threatened to blow up the nation’s gas pipelines to spite Russia and in late January threatened to establish an “alternative government” with himself as the head.

Yarosh’s party, the Right Sector, was formed by various fascist and neo-Nazi factions in the Maidan protests. A spokesman for the Right Sector is now bragging that with Yarosh’s appointment the party will be funded directly by the Defense Ministry.

Yarosh is also on an Interpol wanted list since July, following a request by Russia, which has charged him with incitement to terrorism for the comments about the gas pipelines.

Here is a BBC article:


Ukraine crisis: Tension over rise of nationalist Yarosh

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Response to newthinking (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 10:24 AM

7. Seniority and titles are irrelevant. Facts and logic are the only things that count.

I just had a similar point with someone in another Ukraine-thread.

It doesn't matter how long you have been busy with something.
Is your explanation the only possible explanation? No? Then don't claim that it's the only possible explanation.

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Response to DetlefK (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 15, 2015, 08:08 PM

8. Yes of course. The real reality is not the one that is experienced but learned on TV!!

And I just posted several sources. Three now just in this topic, to your **Zilch**.

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