• Isaac
    9.4k
    What I'm against is the reurgitation of Russian propagandassu

    ...which is absurd.

    Russia is opposed to the US. It's going to promote any story that reflects negatively on the US.

    If you're going to repress all Russian propaganda you're effectively denying all opposition to the US, since all negative actions of the US will undoubtedly figure in Russian propaganda.
  • ssu
    6.6k
    Russia is opposed to the US. It's going to promote any story that reflects negatively on the US.

    If you're going to repress all Russian propaganda you're effectively denying all opposition to the US, since all negative actions of the US will undoubtedly figure in Russian propaganda.
    Isaac
    Facts aren't propaganda.

    I think that Putin has mentioned himself for example PNAC, but you don't have to refer Putin on it, you can easily refer to this perfect example of US imperialism by the actual documents of the think tank and all the historical research done on it and the actions of it's members. Or just listen to the famous interviews that Wesley Clarke gave on the neocon adventurism (which he after dems got into power absolutely hates to be reminded of).
  • Tzeentch
    2.2k
    I think we a had already this discussion 11 months ago. And then (and now) nothing else is given, but the Nuland tapes and articles from that time as "proof" of this conspiracy theory of a "US coup".ssu

    "All I have" are US state officials confessing to funneling billions of USD to Ukraine, and being deeply involved in the construction of the post-coup government.

    In what world would you ask "Is that all?" when this happens in a supposedly democratic country?

    Whether you accept that the United States played a role in the coup is largely irrelevant, because this is more than enough proof of American meddling in Ukraine, which as many have argued is what sparked this conflict.
  • Isaac
    9.4k
    I think that Putin has mentioned himself for example PNAC, but you don't have to refer Putin on itssu

    Right. Absolutely no one here has used Putin as a source of evidence on anything ever. So what the fuck are you on about?
  • neomac
    681
    . Joining the EU is unlikely to improve human rights in Ukraine based on the unequivocal evidence that it has not done so for any other country.Isaac

    But my hypothesis is not that joining EU improves human rights because: 1. when you roughly reached the top (the range is between 0-1) of course there is no much improving , at best you can preserve it 2. Those trends do not discriminate between driving factors (e.g. domestic vs foreign). Indeed EU/NATO membership could also contribute to inhibit/weaken adverse trends prior and after the membership was accepted e.g. through sanctions, monitoring and induced constitutional reforms etc.
    As I explained several times but you keep playing dumb, I care comparing the likely trends concerning human rights institutions of ex-Soviet Republic between those which joined EU/NATO and those which didn't and remained under anti-West Russian influence. Why would I care about such comparison? For the obvious reason that Ukraine wants to join EU/NATO to escape from Russian sphere of influence. So it's relevant to understand what might happen to "human rights" institutions in the 2 cases. And since no trend in Russia/Belarus is close to reach any trend in ex-Soviet Republics that joined EU/NATO so far (EVEN WHEN IS DECLINING), my hypothesis is still very much plausible.

    But I see you have a new favourite metric.Isaac

    What?! You were wining about the metric "physical integrity rights " (as you wined about the "democratic index" in the past). Then you wined about the examples I've selected. And now that I gave you the metrics you asked for, you are wining over trend variations [1] which aren't significant enough to challenge my hypothesis. Are you crazy?!

    [1]
    https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/human-rights-vdem?tab=chart&time=2004..latest&country=BLR~RUS~ROU~LVA~SVK~BGR~LTU~EST~POL
  • jorndoe
    2.4k
    Nah, , no need to artificially limit an assessment/evaluation like so. And we take what we have when trying to better understand the attacker/imposer and defender, maybe what they want / don't want.
    (Incidentally, Putin enrolling Ukraine into Russia would have been some achievement (resource-wise, politically, power-wise on the international stage, economically, popularity-wise at home, all that).)
    Trajectories and trends matter too, like those mentioned above.

    Posted prior in the thread? Others were. Anyway...

    UN Human Rights reports dire human rights situation seven months after the start of the Russian Federation wide-scale armed attack on Ukraine
    — Tanya Korol · UN Human Rights · Sep 27, 2022
    Olenivka prison massacre
    — Wikipedia

    By the way, Holocaust Remembrance is today:

    Putin blasts 'neo-Nazis' in Ukraine on Holocaust Remembrance Day
    — AFP via Yahoo · Jan 27, 2023

    It seems power does indeed corruptTzeentch

    And elected officials like the Frump, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Wendy Rogers, Ted Cruz, ..., look a bit like societal decline. Apparently, the Frump is now pushing the nuclear thing, suggesting that Biden sending nuclear weapons to Ukraine is next up.
  • Paine
    1.1k
    So on what possible ground is it right to give the most powerful nation on earth the benefit of the doubt here?Isaac

    The skepticism expressed was not an attempt to give the U.S. a 'benefit of the doubt'. The U.S. has proven itself capable of doing many nefarious things. The worst of those can be related to accounts of how they were carried out by the people involved. Nothing like that has been presented as yet in regard to the unfolding of the revolution. My observations were given to underline how difficult such an operation would be under the circumstances.

    If they did it, and we let them get away with it, then we've allowed power to dictate foreign governments to suit their needs.Isaac

    If they did it, they will get away with it if nothing more than suspicion is presented as evidence.

    If they didn't, and we assume they did, we hurt the feelings of the people who actually brought about the revolution.Isaac

    I don't know what to make of this trivialization of Ukrainian experience right after you say: "we've allowed power to dictate foreign governments to suit their needs."
  • Isaac
    9.4k
    I care comparing the likely trends concerning human rights institutions of ex-Soviet Republic between those which joined EU/NATO and those which didn't and remained under anti-West Russian influence. Why would I care about such comparison? For the obvious reason that Ukraine wants to join EU/NATO to escape from Russian sphere of influence. So it's relevant to understand what might happen to "human rights" institutions in the 2 cases. And since no trend in Russia/Belarus is close to reach any trend in ex-Soviet Republics that joined EU/NATO so far (EVEN WHEN IS DECLINING), my hypothesis is still very much plausible.neomac

    And yet...

    Those trends do not discriminate between driving factors (e.g. domestic vs foreign).neomac

    So you admit that you cannot possibly derive anything from them about Ukraine's likely trajectory by knowing only one such factor (sphere of influence).

    Here's the charts you're using from the breakup of the USSR (beginning 1988, finalised 1991) to now. All countries including Russia registered a surge because having democratic elections scores very highly. Then very little happens. Russia declines, Belarus and Ukraine are turbulent but level, the others show virtually no change.

    Depending on the nature of the democratic process installed, each country's score rose at the time democracy was established, then stagnated. This is largely to do with V-dem's heavy weighting of electoral procedures in its index (https://www.v-dem.net/data/).

    Ukraine, however, already has democratic elections. Famously good ones (apparently) with Zelensky commanding the country's full mandate we're told.

    So what improvements could you possibly anticipate, since electoral reform is petty much the only improvement that's consistent and even Russia achieved that with the break up of the USSR. I don't see any evidence of Ukraine's 'likely' path there.

    What's more, at issue is not simply the question of whether Ukraine would be better off outside of Russian puppetry (undoubtedly yes). It's whether a protracted land war is the best, or even acceptable means of achieving that, considering the enormous cost.

    None of the countries you cite as examples have come out of long protracted land wars, nor have such significant far right nationalist sentiment, nor have such influential natural resource reserves, nor have Ukraine's position strategically for Russia... Nor a dozen other factors. The charts I selected show that there's nothing causal about entering a Western sphere of influence. Some countries improve (Lithuania, Estonia), others don't (Croatia, Saudi-Arabia, Iraq). so there's no reason at all to believe that it's the Western influence, and not internal factors that drive the changes.

    Certainly not enough reason to justify supporting a devastating war on the back of.
  • Isaac
    9.4k
    we take what we have when trying to better understand the attacker/imposer and defenderjorndoe

    What "we have" is the relative conduct in Crimea, which you're ignoring for some reason. We're trying to answer the question of what a Russian controlled region of Ukraine would be like and you want to start examining unrelated factors and ignore the example of a Russian controlled region of Ukraine.
  • Isaac
    9.4k
    The U.S. has proven itself capable of doing many nefarious things. The worst of those can be related to accounts of how they were carried out by the people involved. Nothing like that has been presented as yet in regard to the unfolding of the revolution. My observations were given to underline how difficult such an operation would be under the circumstances.Paine

    Yep. "always opposed to the previous war, never the current one". That way the war machine can just keep trundling on and everyone gets to pretend they're not supporters.

    It's often decades after the event that we find out the sort of details you're using the lack of to exculpate the US. And this isn't a court of law, we're holding them to account, not bringing criminal charges. We don't need a smoking gun, we need the barest whiff of abuse of power.

    If they did it, they will get away with it if nothing more than suspicion is presented as evidence.Paine

    Nonsense. Have you even read a newspaper? Governments have been brought down on the basis of nothing but hearsay. If the government didn't care whether we knew (but didn't have the evidence), they wouldn't put such enormous amounts of effort into controlling the narrative would they? Do you think Cambridge Analytica used the power of solid evidence-based arguments? Are we concerned about Russian troll farms because they might present bundles of court-ready evidence dockets? No we're concerned about their effect on public opinion.

    If there's even the slightest sign that the US are repeating the same abuses of power that we know for a fact they've done before, then it matters that we kick up a hue and cry about it. It matters that they feel nervous. A government should be terrified of its people.

    Right now they know can expect nothing but obsequious compliance from the likes of you so long as they don't slip up and release documentary evidence of the master plot in excruciating detail.

    I don't know what to make of this trivialization of Ukrainian experience right after you say: "we've allowed power to dictate foreign governments to suit their needs."Paine

    Hopefully make of it exactly what it said. Hurt feelings are less important that holding power to account.

    If the US government were involved, it's very important that they feel nervous (if not petrified) that their electorate will not stand for it.

    If the US government were not involved, it is far less important (of virtually no consequence at all) that we properly congratulate the people who did actually do it. Hopefully they didn't do it for the praise.

    Not that any of this is anything other than a smokescreen. after all, on this same thread, woven in amongst our conversation, you have @neomac literally arguing that Western influence is so instrumental in improving a country's human right record that it's worth fighting a bloody war for, and yet you've remained entirely silent about that.

    No complaints about removal of agency when the argument supports the war.
  • ssu
    6.6k
    "All I have" are US state officials confessing to funneling billions of USD to Ukraine, and being deeply involved in the construction of the post-coup government.Tzeentch
    And what you just said means that it wasn't a US staged coup. And the post-coup government lasted for few months until the elections in the same year where the extreme-right lost.

    In what world would you ask "Is that all?" when this happens in a supposedly democratic country?Tzeentch
    Let's remember that the Revolution of Dignity started from a foreign trade policy issue, which inherently made the EU part of this.

    Whether you accept that the United States played a role in the coup is largely irrelevant, because this is more than enough proof of American meddling in Ukraine, which as many have argued is what sparked this conflict.Tzeentch
    And your view is largely irrelevant, as people understand that this war started from the annexation of Crimea and the separatism in the Donbas area in 2014.
  • Tzeentch
    2.2k
    And your view is largely irrelevant, as people understand that this war started from the annexation of Crimea and the separatism in the Donbas area in 2014.ssu

    Ah, so people like Mearsheimer, Chomsky, Sachs, etc., what are they in your view? A bunch of dummies? Kremlin propagandists? Their views are irrelevant, because...? Because they don't conform to your world view, I imagine?
  • EricH
    448
    Ah, so people like Mearsheimer, Chomsky,Tzeentch

    Chomsky has stated that the "the Russian invasion of Ukraine is a major war crime, ranking alongside the U.S. invasion of Iraq and the Hitler-Stalin invasion of Poland in September 1939, to take only two salient examples. It always makes sense to seek explanations, but there is no justification, no extenuation."

    I have been following the events in Ukraine and this ongoing discussion with some combination of dismay/sorrow/despair. I understand (tho don't 100% agree) your position (which more or less aligns with Chomsky's) that the war could have been avoided by appeasing Russian concerns and that US support of Ukraine is prolonging the ongoing catastrophe.

    I would gladly be wrong but I don't see any end in sight for the near term. I don't see either side gaining a military victory and the Russian strategy of destroying Ukraine's infrastructure (with the side effect of killing civilians) has had the opposite effect of hardening Ukraine's resolve to win.

    I don't see any resolution until the two sides get sick & tired of killing each other - and this could go on for years

    It would make me very happy to be wrong.
  • ssu
    6.6k
    If you would actually follow what people like I write, you would have noticed that on some issues I agree with Mearsheimer, Sachs and even with Chomsky. And in some issue I hold a different view. But these change by the issue at hand and the differences between them and others are many times very subtle.

    But perhaps you are the type who either puts someone on a pedestal and agrees everything what they say and damns them others the lowest hell and avoids everything they say as the plague. At least that I'm getting from you...
  • Paine
    1.1k
    Yep. "always opposed to the previous war, never the current one". That way the war machine can just keep trundling on and everyone gets to pretend they're not supporters.Isaac

    I have actively protested against every war the U.S. has ventured upon since Vietnam. I wasn't sure about Vietnam because I was a kid holding a draft card.

    It's often decades after the event that we find out the sort of details you're using the lack of to exculpate the USIsaac

    I am not trying to "exculpate the US." I am trying to introduce the perspective that things happen outside of it.
    It is true that many details stay hidden for years. On the other hand, there are many cases where suspicious activities were reported and became the source of scandal.

    If there's even the slightest sign that the US are repeating the same abuses of power that we know for a fact they've done before, then it matters that we kick up a hue and cry about it.Isaac

    Then you better get to work and find this sign. The political discourse in the U.S. is not going to recognize or smell a "barest whiff of abuse of power" without something to chew on.

    Hopefully make of it exactly what it said. Hurt feelings are less important that holding power to account.Isaac

    If the revolution was a staged event, and can be shown to be so, this will undermine the authority of Ukraine as an independent nation. Compare the situation to when other regimes were created by foreign powers. From your extensive commentary, it is clear that you take this lack of legitimacy as a starting place rather than something that can be confirmed or denied by a consideration of facts.

    Right now they know can expect nothing but obsequious compliance from the likes of you so long as they don't slip up and release documentary evidence of the master plot in excruciating detail.Isaac

    It is interesting to see how small you have made me.
  • Isaac
    9.4k
    I have actively protested against every war the U.S. has ventured upon since Vietnam.Paine

    You clearly haven't because you've not spoken a word of opposition against this one.

    I am not trying to "exculpate the US." I am trying to introduce the perspective that things happen outside of it.Paine

    I can't see why. No-one is using the argument "nothing happens outside of the US" so there's no need for such a counter-perspective. Clearly some things happen under US puppetry, others don't. We're trying to establish which this is. Simply reminding us that some things happen outside of US influence doesn't help us decide whether this particular thing was one of those.

    Then you better get to work and find this sign.Paine

    Already have. As I demonstrated, a large proportion, if the not the majority of political analysts at the time though this evidence was a sign of US orchestration. It's only now the narrative needs to change that people are pretending otherwise. I've already cited the BBC's chief political analyst at the time

    this transcript suggests that the US has very clear ideas about what the outcome should be and is striving to achieve these goals...Washington clearly has its own game-planhttps://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-26079957

    As I said, the trouble with hastily trying to change the story is that we have the internet now.

    If the revolution was a staged event, and can be shown to be so, this will undermine the authority of Ukraine as an independent nation.Paine

    I don't see how. High quality elections have taken place since then. What it proves is the US's meddling in the region. It puts the lie to the idea that the US are only involved because of the Ukrainian people's sovereignty. They don't give a fuck about sovereignty. They want US (or US friendly) control over the gas supply to Europe (among other boons) and are willing to do anything to get it - change regime, fight Russia, train neo-Nazis, flood the world's biggest black-market arms dealer with weapons, sabotage a pipeline...

    It is interesting to see how small you have made me.Paine

    Any time you feel like actually holding power to account, feel free to show your mettle. Otherwise, yes, simply regurgitating the narrative of the most powerful nation on earth is pretty small. They really don't need any help.
  • Tzeentch
    2.2k
    But perhaps you are the type who either puts someone on a pedestal and agrees everything what they say and damns them others the lowest hell and avoids everything they say as the plague. At least that I'm getting from you...ssu

    Ah, right.

    Your first accusation failed - accusing me of basing my views only on "truth teller" Mearsheimer - which I thoroughly debunked.

    So now you have to find some new accusation to latch onto.

    I'm not going to play this game with you.
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