The war will end
The leaders will shake hands
The old woman will keep waiting for her martyred son
The girl will wait for her beloved husband
And those children will wait for their hero father
I don’t know who sold our homeland
But I saw who paid the price
- Mahmoud Darwish
Kyiv is under attack! Full scale Russian Invasion! Down with Putin! Social media today is rife with these clickbaity snippets either condemning or endorsing Russia. It is no secret that pacifism has gone for a toss in Ukraine, and it indeed is very difficult to pick sides. On the surface, Russia's action looks deplorable to say the least. But it seems like the people (at least in the west) have a rather short-lived memory. The pre pandemic era after all does seem like distant past. It was only in 2014 that the far right (literally called the right sector in Ukrainian) toppled the Ukrainian government and ousted Viktor Yanukovych after he refused to sign a free Treaty agreement with the European Union. Have we forgotten the Euromaidan protests already? Vladimir Golstein in 2014 wrote, 'Corrupt, Kiev-based oligarchs have entered into alliance with ultraconservative forces of the western Ukrainian region, a region which is agricultural, pre-modern and is extremely hostile to all things Russian, including modernisation. The rather obvious purpose of this alliance is to impose a Western version of shock-therapy upon a country that has so far resisted it, because its economy is heavily intertwined with Russian resources and consumption'.
It is the Eastern part, the workers in the steel plants and Mines are the ones resisting the push westwards. What a surprise! Workers resisting a westward push. With the collapse of the Soviet Union still fresh in the minds of the working class in Ukraine, the sheer humiliation, the unchecked loss of livelihood, the eastern part is rightfully sceptical of NATO and the Nazi national guard. Lev Golinkin wrote in The Nation that "post-Maidan Ukraine is the world's only nation to have a neo-Nazi formation in its armed forces. “Ukraine, under oligarchs has been choking Donetsk and Luhansk, going out of its way to hound separatists. We need no reminder of NATO actions in the middle east. It is sad that Ukraine has now become a playground of the imperialist NATO. USA does supply military hardware to Ukraine, it also doles out money to Israel, whose genocidal activities need no introduction.
Ukraine is only the latest grazing ground, or should one say playground for the western imperialist countries led by the United States. Need one remind the world the ramifications of western intervention in Yugoslavia in the 1990s?
Who is to be blamed for all the imminent deaths? War causes death and what does death cause? Politics at the most, unfortunately. All western propaganda machinery as we speak has kickstarted its factory of lies and deceit. To them only certain deaths are visibly deaths, many are not. Since 2014, the regions of the Donbass republics have been under inhuman siege like condition from Ukrainian state, causing suffering and death of many. The Russian invasion certainly will cause many more deaths, but we can take refuge in the ineluctable fact that these deaths will cause furore for years. Just as the death of the victims of 9/11 caused a furore that lasted decades, cloaking the equally unfortunate death of hundreds of thousands of Afghans and Iraqis. The world today, especially the liberal sect is once again falling in this abyss where western accountability is the floor.
Make no mistake, Putin is no liberator on an open jeep, with a cigar on his right hand and a Kalashnikov on his left. He has his own agenda and interest. He is no friend of progressive movements. But liberal criticism of Putin and Russia is founded on the assumptions designed and constructed by the right wing and state mechanisms like that of the United States. Russia has since time immemorial been projected as the land of brute people that always is looking for chances to harm the civilised, so free west. The fall of Soviet Union did not satisfy the western hunger for power. The unfurling of colour in the reactionary movements were not sufficient. The march of capitalism sure did enter Moscow, but Russian humiliation and liberal folly in not seeing western imperialism ultimately brought a war to Russia’s front yard, not America’s. The last time a competing power tried to establish a base near America’s shore, the world nearly was vaporised by nukes. So, people of the west and especially liberals should sit back on their recliners and ask amongst themselves, what colour to assign to this revolution? It is after all freedom that the people of Donetsk and Luhansk seek. (Long live freedom?).