March 18, 2022

 

[Please read Ukraine Thoughts about actual U.S. aims re Ukraine]

[Also please see "Ukraine: Links to info re the war" with frequently updated links to news and analysis.]

Dear President Biden: You owe us Americans an explanation for your refusal to make peace in Ukraine thereby increasing the chance that we will all die in a thermonuclear war.

 

A Reuters article headlined, "Russia will stop 'in a moment' if Ukraine meets terms - Kremlin" [1] reported that: "Russia has told Ukraine it is ready to halt military operations "in a moment" if Kyiv meets a list of conditions, the Kremlin spokesman said on Monday.

 

"Dmitry Peskov said Moscow was demanding that Ukraine cease military action, change its constitution to enshrine neutrality, acknowledge Crimea as Russian territory, and recognise the separatist republics of Donetsk and Lugansk as independent states."

 

President Biden, these are reasonable conditions! Why don't you accede to them and thereby eliminate the excuses Putin needs to maintain the support of the Russian public for the invasion, without which support Putin would have to end the invasion because otherwise he would run a very high risk of being overthrown for waging an unpopular war?

 

The fact that these conditions may not be all that Putin truly wants is irrelevant, because they are all that the Russian public wants. Putin knows that he--just like the Czar of Russia who was overthrown in February of 1917 for keeping Russia in an unpopular war--would likely be overthrown if he continued the invasion of Ukraine despite you--President Biden--having accepted all of the conditions that Putin claims are the only aims of the invasion.

 

Why, President Biden, do you not accept these conditions, and thereby end the horrible carnage and end the threat of thermonuclear war?

 

President Biden, I challenge you to show that these conditions are not reasonable.

 

Why shouldn't Ukraine be neutral? Even Henry Kissinger said it should be neutral.[2] Do you deny that Kissinger knew a thing or two about what you call "U.S. national security"?

Putin's demand for Ukraine to be neutral is primarily a demand for it not to ever be a member of the anti-Russia NATO alliance. [9] Without in any way violating the sovereignty of Ukraine, the U.S., like any other current member of NATO can--according to the Washington Treaty that governs NATO, Article 10--veto the new membership of any nation including Ukraine. Nations do not have a right to join NATO; membership requires a mutual agreement. Denying NATO membership to a nation no more violates that nation's sovereignty than not inviting a person to one's birthday party violates their freedom. If you, President Biden, permanently vetoed any Ukraine NATO membership, and if you ceased providing Ukraine with offensive weapons it could use against Russia, then Ukraine would be de facto neutral, with no violation of its national sovereignty whatsoever. Why don't you do this?

 

Why shouldn't Crimea be acknowledged as Russian territory?

 

The BBC reported that "Some 95.5% of voters in Crimea have supported joining Russia, officials say, after half the votes have been counted in a disputed referendum." [3]

 

Russia annexed Crimea in February of 2014.

 

Wikipedia reports [4]:

 

The results of the survey by the US government Broadcasting Board of Governors, conducted April 21–29, 2014, showed that 83% of Crimeans felt that the results of the March 16 referendum on Crimea's status likely reflected the views of most people there. Whereas, this view is shared only by 30% in the rest of Ukraine.[152]

 

According to the Gallup's survey performed on April 21–27, 82.8% of Crimean people consider the referendum results reflecting most Crimeans' views,[153] and 73.9% of Crimeans say Crimea's becoming part of Russia will make life better for themselves and their families, while 5.5% disagree.[153]

 

According to survey carried out by Pew Research Center in April 2014, the majority of Crimean residents say the referendum was free and fair (91%) and that the government in Kyiv ought to recognize the results of the vote (88%).[154]

 

According to a poll of the Crimeans by the Ukrainian branch of Germany's biggest market research organization, GfK, on January 16–22, 2015: "Eighty-two percent of those polled said they fully supported Crimea's inclusion in Russia, and another 11 percent expressed partial support. Only 4 percent spoke out against it. ... Fifty-one percent reported their well-being had improved in the past year."[155]

 

Bloomberg's Leonid Bershidsky noted that "The calls were made on Jan. 16–22 to people living in towns with a population of 20,000 or more, which probably led to the peninsula's native population, the Tatars, being underrepresented because many of them live in small villages. On the other hand, no calls were placed in Sevastopol, the most pro-Russian city in Crimea. Even with these limitations, it was the most representative independent poll taken on the peninsula since its annexation."[155]

 

President Biden, why shouldn't Ukraine recognize the separatist republics of Donetsk and Lugansk as independent states?

 

The people in those parts of Ukraine are mainly Russian-speaking. Here's what NPR--hardly a tool of Russian propaganda!--reports about Donetsk and Lugansk [5]:

 

"The rebel-controlled territories, Luhansk and Donetsk, comprise a larger region called Donbas that borders Russia. The two territories have been led by pro-Russia separatists for nearly a decade."

 

After the Maidan revolution (which installed a pro-US Ukrainian government) in 2014, NPR explains:

 

"Separatist factions in Luhansk and Donetsk emerge emboldened "Clashes soon broke out between pro-Russian rebels in Donbas and Ukrainian military forces,..."

 

"By late April 2014, Ukraine's interim President Alexander Turchinov said the government had lost control of the eastern part of the country..." "A 2014 referendum in the region found strong support among residents for secession from Ukraine,..."

 

"Later, Ukraine's government decided to grant the separatist regions self-rule and give the militants amnesty, though the move stopped short of declaring the regions fully independent. It was a major concession from the government, though some separatists said it didn't go far enough. On-again, off-again fighting continued even as both sides agreed on a cease-fire..."

 

"The conflict in eastern Ukraine continues today The violent power struggle in eastern Ukraine, though at times reduced to a low boil, never really ended."

 

"In 2019 Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with Putin for face-to-face peace talks on the continuing violence in eastern Ukraine, but the discussions didn't lead to a long-term solution."

 

"More than 13,000 people have died as a result of the conflict and more than 1.5 million were displaced, according to the Council on Foreign Relations."

 

President Biden, the American British colonies fought a war for independence, and you have never said they were wrong for doing that, have you?

 

A referendum found strong support in Donetsk and Lugansk for secession from Ukraine, and the people there have been fighting for it for many years now. Why shouldn't they be allowed to secede?

 

Furthermore, why, President Biden, do you not acknowledge that there really are Neo-Nazis in powerful positions in Ukraine today, and that the Neo-Nazis are extremely hostile towards Russia and Russian-speaking people in Ukraine, and that good and decent people should support the de-Nazification of Ukraine, rather than mocking Putin for saying he is for that goal?

 

Even NBC admits that there is a serious, and violent, Neo-Nazi presence in Ukraine today [6]: The headline of its article is "Ukraine's Nazi problem is real, even if Putin's 'denazification' claim isn't: Not acknowledging this threat means that little is being done to guard against it."

 

The reality of Neo-Nazis in Ukraine is, however, far worse than what NBC states. Jacobinmag.com [7 ] paints this picture of the forces that led the Maidan Revolution that installed the pro-US government in 2014:

 

"Whatever one thinks of the Maidan protests, the increasing violence of those involved was key to their ultimate victory. In response to a brutal police crackdown, protesters began fighting with chains, sticks, stones, petrol bombs, even a bulldozer — and, eventually, firearms, all culminating in what was effectively an armed battle in February, which left thirteen police officers and nearly fifty protesters dead. The police “could no longer defend themselves’ from protesters’ attacks,” writes political scientist Sergiy Kudelia, causing them to retreat, and precipitating Yanukovych’s exit.

 

"The driver of this violence was largely the Ukrainian far right, which, while a minority of the protesters, served as a kind of revolutionary vanguard. Looking outside Kyiv, a systematic analysis of more than 3,000 Maidan protests found that members of the far-right Svoboda party — whose leader once complained Ukraine was run by a “Muscovite-Jewish mafia” and which includes a politician who admires Joseph Goebbels — were the most active agents in the protests. They were also more likely to take part in violent actions than any group but one: Right Sector, a collection of far-right activists that traces its lineage to genocidal Nazi collaborators. "Svoboda used its considerable resources, which included thousands of ideologically committed activists, party coffers, and the power and prominence afforded to it as a parliamentary party, to mobilize and keep the protests alive, while eventually leading the occupation of key government buildings in both Kyiv and the western regions. This was particularly the case in the western city of Lviv, where protesters took over a regional administration building that soon came to be partially controlled and guarded by far-right paramilitaries. There, they declared a “people’s council” that “proclaimed Svoboda-dominated local councils and their executive committees the only legitimate bodies in the region,” writes Volodymyr Ishchenko, fueling the crisis of legitimacy that ended in Yanukovych’s ouster.

 

"But this was by no means limited to Ukraine’s West. Right Sector led the January 19 attacks on police in Kyiv that even opposition leaders criticized, with one protester saying the far-right bloc had “breathed new life into these protests.” Andriy Parubiy, the unofficial “commander of Maidan,” founded the Social-National Party of Ukraine — a barely even winking allusion to Nazism — that later became Svoboda. By January 2014, even NBC was admitting that “right-wing militia-type toughs are now one of the strongest factions leading Ukraine’s protests.” What was meant to be a revolution for democracy and liberal values ended up featuring ultranationalist chants from the 1930s and prominent displays of fascist and white supremacist symbols, including the American Confederate flag."

 

President Biden, the alarming and substantial influence of Neo-Nazis in Ukraine today is described in great detail at the end of an article by Ali Abunimah, executive director of The Electronic Intifada [8]. The Telegraph also provides information about the Neo-Nazis in Ukraine.[10]

 

President Biden, your refusal to accede to Putin's conditions are creating a New Cold War that is causing us great economic suffering and even worse it sharply increases the risk of thermonuclear war that would kill us. You owe us a clear explanation for why you are doing this. So far there has been no such explanation, only propaganda rhetoric. Our lives, and the lives of many others, are at stake. You owe us an explanation for why that is.

Sincerely,

John Spritzler

 

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1. https://www.reuters.com/world/kremlin-says-russian-military-action-will-stop-moment-if-ukraine-meets-2022-03-07/?fbclid=IwAR28n2p5kam1tVWdWb64a1O1idWdFpiRsuWqt_ZBxWfWMCUpCIPD3LXovvI 

 

2. https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/ukraine-crisis/henry-kissinger-weighs-ukraine-crisis-n45516?fbclid=IwAR3XHtt_BxzKcDQXNk30nffHpYxSsUazb_QbVNRh5qohu_yHNafCgOODvYM  which reports: Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who shared the Nobel Prize for secretly negotiating an end to the Vietnam War in 1973, offered his perspective on the Ukraine crisis on Wednesday, arguing that the fate of the country should not be a choice between the East and the West but rather a “bridge between them.” “Far too often the Ukrainian issue is posed as a showdown: whether Ukraine joins the East or the West,” Kissinger writes in an opinion article in the Washington Post. “But if Ukraine is to survive and thrive, it must not be either side’s outpost against the other — it should function as a bridge between them.”

 

3. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26606097 

 

4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Crimean_status_referendum#Post-referendum_po 

 

5. https://www.npr.org/2022/02/22/1082345068/why-luhansk-and-donetsk-are-key-to-understanding-the-latest-escalation-in-ukrainfor 

 

6. https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/ukraine-has-nazi-problem-vladimir-putin-s-denazification-claim-war-ncna1290946 

 

7. https://jacobinmag.com/2022/02/maidan-protests-neo-nazis-russia-nato-crimea 

 

8. https://electronicintifada.net/content/israel-lobby-group-adl-rehabilitates-hitlers-accomplices-ukraine/35021?fbclid=IwAR2Wu0VLVhPEowr6ql3R9_3EGdaThRWqayD8vgOacOX9Gum2PyCie4NfF48 

9. https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/03/16/opinion/how-biden-nato-can-end-russias-war-with-ukraine/?fbclid=IwAR0eQNtoptS9CevR-3pKCqjrkxuMw9Ahh638-Cp43ewaKmKizRUMmlWnFdM 

10. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/03/18/inside-azov-neo-nazi-brigade-killing-russian-generals-playing/?WT.mc_id=e_DM1552444&WT.tsrc=email&etype=Loy_Dig_Acq_Sat_0Dto3D_12MarTest&utmsource=email&utm_medium=Loy_Dig_Acq_Sat_0Dto3D_12MarTest20220319&utm_campaign=DM1552444