What's Going On In Ukraine?
When it comes to geopolitical issues, how can we tell what's really happening? It's no secret that people have lost trust in legacy media as a result of COVID, and even before COVID. Scientists, doctors and journalists presenting information that calls into question government narratives and measures have been ignored, ridiculed and censored. When it comes to geopolitical issues in the past, we've seen the same.
War, like COVID, has long been used to serve ulterior motives. 9/11, for example, was used to invade Iraq. In 2016, the same countries implicated in funding, weaponizing and even creating terrorist organizations like ISIS were the ones claiming to be fighting terrorism. Geopolitics is always followed by narrative wars, and it's so difficult to discern what's actually happening.
So how can we tell what's going on in Ukraine? To be honest, we can't, but we can share multiple perspectives, ones that legacy media continues to ignore. After all, it's not unreasonable to assume something is awry when you look at the graph below via of MintPress News.
According to them, ninety percent of recent articles in the New York Times, The Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal have taken a hawkish view on conflict, with not many anti-war voices receiving attention. Right now, mainstream media is unified 100 percent with regards to who the aggressor is in this situation; Russia. Anybody who questions this narrative, according to legacy media, is insane. Where have we seen this before?
Legacy media is claiming that Russian forces are invading Ukraine, firing upon the citizenry and creating chaos. Russia is claiming that they are not targeting civilian areas, only military installations.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russian leader Vladimir Putin's aim was to destroy his state.
In a televised speech at 05:55 Moscow time (02:55 GMT) yesterday, Putin announced a "military operation" in Ukraine's eastern Donbas region. This area is home to many Russian-speaking Ukrainians. Parts of it have been occupied and run by "Russian-backed rebels" since 2014.
Putin said Russia was intervening as an act of self-defence. Russia did not want to occupy Ukraine, he said, but would demilitarise and "de-Nazify" the country. Since this time, loud bangs in the capital Kyiv, as well as Kramatorsk in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine have been occuring, which again according to the Russians, were attacks on Ukraine military installations.
A conflict has indeed begun, which is extremely unfortunate especially when you think of all the innocent civilians who live in the region.
Tensions in the region have been building for quite some time. In December, Putin expressed the following,
"There's nothing unclear about this, we are not deploying our missiles over at the border of the US. No, on the other hand the US is deploying its missiles close to our home, on the porch of our house (Ukraine). So, are we demanding something excessive? We're simply asking them not to deploy their attack systems over at our home."
Putin is asking Ukraine to remain neutral and not join NATO, and that the country removes all of the foreign weapons they've been receiving from the western military alliance.
Threatened expansion of NATO to Ukraine is legitimately dangerous for Russia, for which Ukraine is of vital interest (but not to the US).
Russia is also claiming, again, that they are invading to protect people subjected to bullying and genocide and at the hands of the Ukrainian government. Ukraine, and much of the western world have denied these allegations and labelled them as false.
Below, economics professor Yanis Varoufakis explains, in his opinion, the only way to de-escalate the situation.
But there are conflicting narratives to the claim that these allegations are false, and also narratives that confirm the mainstream one.
For example, we spoke to a Ukrainian Canadian yesterday named Boris Ralchenko, an avid reader of our work. He told us that Russian troops are not at all welcome in the country, and that most of the citizenry is pro-Ukrainian government.
Ralchenko also told us that the Ukrainian government is not committing atrocities on a portion of the citizenry as Putin claims. He showed us a message from his childhood friend who still lives in Ukraine, and expressed how the citizens actually burned a Russian tank that become stuck. The citizens also killed the Russian soldiers. In this instance, the Russian soldiers clearly weren't welcome.
But we also posed the following question via our social media accounts,
Is there anybody on here that's from the Ukraine? Or has family there? If you do or don't, please feel free to share your opinion on what's happening there. As many of you know, it's become near impossible to trust Legacy media. We will be publishing a piece on the situation soon that looks at multiple perspectives currently being shared from a variety of sources.
Here's one response from our Facebook Page,
"I live near a town heavily populated by Ukrainians. Many still have family living there. Here's a copy and paste of a message from one of my friends there:
Just talked to my mom, she said everything is good (she's in Luhansk). Eastern parts of Ukraine (Luhansk, Donezk) proclaimed themselves a separate republic from 2013, but Ukraine didn't want the division, because 90 percent of money comes from this area of the country (coal). So they have been terrorizing them for a long time and shooting once in a while. So Putin is actually protecting them. And I talked to my friend (she lives in Kiev) she said the Ukrainian army is exploding something, to make it look like Russia is doing it. We're already used to the government and media lying to us in Ukraine, and most people don't even react anymore."
Another one from our Facebook Page,
I am from Ukraine, have family all over the country including East. [...] Putin invaded the whole of Ukraine from air, sea and land. Because he doesn’t want Ukraine to be pro-European and be associated with NATO. It’s putin’s security concern and NATO wasn’t even going to take Ukraine in. He just wants blood. And it’s hard to believe people know nothing about this psychopath.
Here's another comment from our Telegram Page,
Another one from Telegram,
As you can see, even people from the region and those with close ties in Ukraine are also separated in their opinion with regards to what's happening. But one thing is certain, violence is happening.
Here's a clip from a Ukrainian journalist courtesy of Bridge City News describing what life is like right now in the country.
It can help to find journalists on the ground who've also been speaking to people, like Eva Bartlett. She is well known for going to the places she writes about and has spent some time on the ground in the Ukraine. The narrative that many people in Ukraine have faced atrocities from their government in certain eastern regions is something she's written about and documented before.
For example, on September 12, 2019 she visited the areas just north of Gorlovka, Mine 6-7 and Zaitsevo, to see and document the extensive damage to civilian homes Ukrainian shelling has inflicted over the years and recently. In spite of a ceasefire, Ukrainian forces continue shelling residents of these areas, terrorizing them at night.
Prior to this, Bartlett met with Alexey Karpushev, a resident of the northern city of Gorlovka, "an area hard-hit by Ukranian bombing, and whose outskirts continue to be shelled near-daily."
“Summer 2016 was last time city center was bombed,” Alexey told Bartlett. “We still hear the shelling, but it’s on the outskirts. People are sniped there, too.”
All of this is documented in a story she wrote for Mintpress News. Keep in mind this is prior to what's happening today.
"Gorlovka was hardest hit in 2014, especially on July 27, when the center was rocked by Ukrainian-fired Grad and Uragan missiles from morning to evening. After the dust settled and the critically-injured had succumbed to their wounds, at least 30 were dead, including five children, Alexey tells me. The day came to be known as Bloody Sunday."
But there are different groups in these regions. According to the Washington Post,
"The Donbas has been divided into separate territories: the Kyiv-controlled parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts and the Russian-backed separatist Donetsk and Luhansk “people’s republics,” known as the DPR and LPR."
Fighting in eastern Ukraine between the separatists and the Ukrainian government has continued since 2014, claiming 14,000 lives. Violence, division and economic downturn have damaged the region. More than 2 million people have since fled.
In February 2014, a coup overthrew the Ukrainian government which came to power in an election certified by the OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation). The president, Viktor Yanukovych, was forced to flee for his life.
At the time, the coup was promoted by United States officials. The coup government seems to have immediately acted with hostility toward its Russian speaking citizens. Approximately 30% of Ukrainian citizens have Russian as their first language, yet on the first day in power, the coup regime acted to make Russian no longer an official state language. This was followed by more actions of hostility. As documented by journalists like Bartlett.
Keep in mind, multiple governments use propaganda on their own citizens to influence perception. This is probably why citizens of multiple countries, like here in Canada, are so divided with regards to their opinion on major matters. We could be seeing this in Ukraine as well, and this seems to be the case based on the responses we've received on our social media posts, as exemplified earlier in the article.
Bartlett spoke to Dmitry Astrakhan, a press officer in the DPR People’s Militia. Keep in mind this is in 2019.
"Ukraine uses drones to drop explosive devices: it’s impossible to tell which drones are carrying out reconnaissance and which are armed with bombs. If someone yells ‘air attack,’ you need to run to find a shelter with a roof. When you hear the ‘outgoing’ call from the spotter, you have 10 to 15 seconds to run to a shelter.”
She asked Dmitry how he got involved with the DPR Press Office, as he had told me he wasn’t a journalist prior to the war.
"I had a normal job and life. I wasn’t very political. In the beginning, people were mainly just struggling for our rights: the right to speak our language, Russian; the right to have education in our language, to keep the memory of WW2 — because Ukraine started re-writing history. They now consider those Ukrainian nationalists who collaborated with German Nazis heroes, and the Red Army occupiers. We can’t accept this.
I never believed there would be a war, I didn’t believe the Western world would allow this. I thought it would just be some protests, some compromises, but not war. I thought people were being paranoid at first, thinking we would be killed. But they were right, and when the war started, I knew there were things worth fighting for.”
He told Bartlett how Ukraine hides its shelling from the OSCE observers by doing most of it after hours (in the dark, when it is difficult to film) — later claiming that damage done to the DPR side was self-inflicted, or that Ukrainian forces were merely defending themselves, replying to DPR attack.
"The OSCE were attacked a week or so ago by a heavy anti-tank rocket launcher. Ukraine commits many war crimes, but manages to mask it. They are Nazis, but they mask this from the West. Few people understand in the West how close Ukraine is to becoming a full-on Nazi state.
They say that they are from Bandera Front, they are Ukrainian far-right nationalists. When a person from some Western country hears about Bandera, this person could not understand what Ukrainian authorities mean. But I do, I understand what they mean, I understand who Bandera was and what they really mean.”
Stepan Bandera was a Ukrainian political figure, Nazi collaborator, and one of the leading ideologists/theorists of the Ukrainian nationalist movement of the 20th century. Dmitry continues:
"There is a Nazi state in the middle of Europe in the 21st Century. They are dangerous both for us and for the Western world. If they finish with us, they will do the same in the Western world."
But this perspective is completely denied by western media and western military allied countries. For example, CNN recently wrote,
Putin, in an unscheduled televised address dripping with false claims about genocide perpetrated against ethnic Russians in eastern regions of Ukraine, declared an operation to "demilitarize and denazify Ukraine." His malfeasance recalled the dark maneuvers of dictators in the 1930s that pitched the world into war. His reference to Nazis raised the idea of political purges and suggested a mindset seemingly verging on paranoia.
On the other hand, MintPress news journalist Alan Macleod has pointed out that documents reveal the US government has spent $22 million promoting an anti-russian narrative in Ukraine and abroad.
The point, of course, is to develop a cadre of pro-Western neoliberal thought leaders who will ally themselves to the United States and its vision for Ukraine. Left unstated in all this is that the U.S. is deciding who exactly this new generation of leaders comprises. And for all the nods towards diversity and liberalism, the U.S.’ record in Eastern Europe shows they are happy to support fascists and other highly anti-democratic forces. Those who do not share Washington’s goals for Ukraine need not apply. Thus, by using its financial muscle to support only one side in this debate, NED hopes to engineer a future in which pro-Russia, anti-privatization political figures and movements are sidelined and marginalized.
Bartlett goes on,
“People who take at face value the Western media coverage would have a very distorted perception of the Ukraine conflict and its origin,” Ivan Katchanovski, Professor of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa, told MintPress, adding:
They omit or deny that there is a civil war in Donbas even though the majority of scholars who [have] published or presented concerning this conflict in Western academic venues classify it as a civil war with Russian military intervention. The Western media also omitted that recent ‘unity marches’ in Kharkiv and Kyiv and a staged training of civilians, including a grandmother, were organized and led by the far right, in particular, the Neo-Nazi Azov [Battalion].”
Again, it's hard to know what's happening, but we've seen complete deception with regards to other geopolitical issues that result in devastating conflict. We saw this in 2016, when staged chemical weapons attacks took place in Syria. The United States was caught red handed in, as Congresswoman and 2020 presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard pointed out,
Supporting allies, partners, individuals and groups who are working directly with al-Qaida, ISIS, Jabhat Fateh al-Sham and other terrorists groups providing them with money, weapons and intelligence support in their fight to overthrow the Syrian government.
Events like these are considered “false flag attacks,” just as many considered 9/11 to be, among others. These are great examples of not only controlling the opposition, but creating it as well.
I am still researching and reaching out to people. It's so hard to know what's really happening, but it seems that what we are being told is also not indicative of truth. This is why I feel it's important to present multiple sources of information that may provide readers with a broader perspective and perhaps some leads to do their own research.
There are also narratives floating around out there claiming that this is an example of two sides being on the 'same team' to push forth the New World Order, and also that there are US bioweapon facilities in the Ukraine. Again, who knows?
Furthermore, regardless of what stance people take, many on both sides are good people and nobody wants conflict. It's extremely unfortunate that innocent civilians all over the globe continue to suffer due to war, which is the continuation of politics through other means.
It shouldn't be this way, but conflict seems to put more power into the hands of a small group of wealthy elite who want to "reset" the world according to their own vision, not ours. All governments seem to have "dirt" on them.
Human beings have the potential to create a human experience where everybody can thrive, so what's the solution to what seems to be unnecessary conflict? How do we remove those who seem to create the conditions for it to be removed from power?