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Monday, February 21, 2022


On Wednesday, Ukrainian forces intensified ongoing shelling of Donbass, lending apparent credibility to Biden's repeated claims over recent weeks that an invasion is "imminent." However, the news raises a number of questions about what we have been told by politicians and the mainstream western media since the beginning of the crisis. We need to take these claims into account in order to understand the significance of current events.

Let's break down the propaganda to figure out how this increase in violence fits into the NATO narrative:

First, the US has given several reasons for why they expect Russia to invade over the last few weeks. That alone should give us pause, given the certainty with which the US has been making these claims. Since they have cited no evidence for most of them, you have to wonder why the secret "evidence" keeps changing. If you've been keeping track, they are, in order:

- "Putin wants to restore the Empire." This has been repeated ad nauseum since the outbreak of the crisis, most recently by Blinken on Wednesday.

- Unsourced "evidence" indicated Russia will stage a false flag attack on Donbass as a pretext for invasion

- Unsourced evidence indicated Russia will fake a false flag in Donbass, using staged video.

- Officials stated that Russia will use its promise to protect Russian citizens and ethnic Russians in Donbass as a "pretext" for crossing the border.

Of these, only the last is a plausible reason that Russia would trigger massive sanctions by invading. If there is any validity to the US doctrine of Responsibility to Protect. That's the pseudo-legal argument that was cited as the reason for violent US interventions in Libya and Syria in contravention of international law. If there is a time when it was justified, this would be it. More properly, it would be an example of using force to prevent genocide (see below for more on this).

As the situation evolves, the propaganda gets more convoluted:

- Thursday, it was reported that Russia was going to invade in respond to a Ukrainian attack on Donbass. By Friday, media were reporting it was unclear who attacked first, even though it makes no sense to imagine that the residents of Donbass were trying to goad the Ukrainian military into attacking, as it was clearly prepared to do (again, more on this below).
- In responding to reports of the increased shelling, Biden stated that the attack on Donbass was a "false flag" operation by Russia, claiming that Russia had fired the first shots in order to provoke a Ukrainian response that would create a "pretext" for an invasion. Interestingly, a reporter on the scene in the same televised report categorically stated that Russia had not fired the first shots.
- A day later, explosions rocked downtown Donetsk and Luhansk, the two principal cities of the breakaway Donbass region. At the time of this writing, I am awaiting the announcement that this was the long-awaited Russian false flag.

It's worth noting that over time, more responsible news sources have begun explaining the Russian security concerns detailed in their response to US demands to withdraw from their own border. At the same time, western media continued to describe these red lines only as "demands," as if Russia explaining its red lines in the face of US threats is unreasonable. Not surprisingly, US officials simply dismissed the most important of these arguments without acknowledging that they had any validity, while claiming to want to negotiate peace (on US terms, of course).

If one accepts that the only plausible reason for a Russian incursion was to protect Russian citizens and ethnic Russians in Ukraine, and that the US must have known, why did Biden suddenly predict before the shelling that it was going to happen within 24-48 hours, again with no evidence? It's reasonable to suspect that the US knew Ukraine was going to attack because it was behind it.

The US government had been trying to talk Ukraine's President Zelensky into escalating the conflict since last spring. Zelensky responded to Washington's lead with threats to residents of the breakaway Republics, but by January he lost his nerve and began to openly dispute US claims of "imminent" war that would serve no one's interest but that of the US weapons industry.

The increase in shelling thus raises a very important point: Since Zelesnky had repeatedly denied that he believed Russia had any intent to invade, why would he suddenly provide a pretext? It's reasonable to suspect that he didn't. The more likely culprits are embedded pro-US fascists in the army acting on their own. If that's the case, Zelensky can't deny ordering the attack if he values his life. We all saw how violent the US-backed Right Sector fascists were willing to get in over to overthrow the elected government and seize power in 2014. There is no reason to think that they would not do the same to Zelensky if he stood in the way of the plan.

The brownshirts of Right Sector are now dispersed throughout the military, including their Azov battalion. Tens of thousands of Ukrainian troops have been massed on the borders of Donbass since before the Russian buildup (which might reasonably be assumed to be the original reason for Russia's massing its own troops on the border last spring). Since some of these neo-Nazis have openly called for genocide of ethnic Russians, it seems likely that they would be perfectly willing to provoke a conflict that will result in horrendous bloodshed, regardless of who "wins" the war in Donbass. Of course, if Russia doesn't take the bait, the US can still score propaganda points by saying that it prevented the invasion that would have otherwise occurred.

In view of Friday's bombing, it appears that the US may have gotten tired of waiting for Russia to respond to the escalation in violence by the Ukrainian neo-Nazis and taken matters into their own hands, using CIA-trained Ukrainian special forces in place in Donbass.

It will be interesting to see how Putin takes advantage of a situation which he surely anticipated, given the lack of imagination of the neocons who have clearly engineered the crisis.


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