Mercury Rising 鳯女

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An example of how bad the analysis Ukrainian rebels rely on can be

Posted by Charles II on February 22, 2015

I had to laugh when I read this post at Fortruss:

Dailykos’s Cover-Up of Obama’s Ukrainian Atrocities
Eric Zuesse

Here are typical examples of how this ‘liberal’ (or even some fools call it ‘progressive’) site, dailykos, has ‘reported’ on these events during the past year. (And, please consider that all of these articles were published after the U.S. President whom that site supports had already installed in Ukraine, via a violent coup, an outright exterminationist nazi regime; and, that this is supposed to be a ‘liberal,’ or even ‘progressive,’ ‘news’ site — this site that hides its hero’s nazism, is supposed to be taken as being instead liberal, or even progressive.)

On 13 November 2014, another said (and strongly disagreed with) “Henry Kissinger, that notorious Russian commie sympathizer, says that the West in effect caused the crisis in Ukraine (not, of course, that it’s OK for Russia to have, in response, intervened in Ukraine) because it failed to understand Russian strategic interests.”

If you haven’t guessed, the post that Zuesse links to is mine. In which I say that Kissinger is one of the saner voices of American foreign policy for objecting to US policy in Russia.

Now, I admit that some posters at Daily Kos are extremely hostile to Russia. But a post that highlights Kissinger saying that the West caused the crisis in Ukraine is not one of them. No, I’m not pro-rebel. I am an American– one who sees our national interest as best served by not toppling governments and starting unnecessary wars. And as a corollary, I think that armed conflict is generally a bad idea, especially when it turns your own territory into rubble and your own population into refugees, amputees, and corpses. That goes for Donetsk-Luhansk no less than for Kiev (though, of course, Kiev is operating in rebel territory, and therefore has a lot more control over what gets destroyed).

There are some things that shouldn’t require [snark] tags, like calling Kissinger a “Russian commie sympathizer.” Anyone who can’t figure that much out shouldn’t be calling himself an “investigative historian.” Strangely, everyone publishes Zuesse– Op-Ed News, Truthout, Huff Post, you name it. I hope whether they take the time to fact-check him.

Alas, that’s a problem with the rebel sites: lack of editorial oversight. And, in Zuesse’s case, a failure to provide an e-mail address for corrections.

Not that the pro-Kiev sites are better. Just that in this case, Fortruss printed one thing that is rather obviously false.
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Added: Jo6pac points out that the e-mail of the editor of FortRuss, Joaquin Flores is posted on that website. If this were more than a tempest in a teapot, I’d complain to him.

2 Responses to “An example of how bad the analysis Ukrainian rebels rely on can be”

  1. jo6pacjo6pac said

    Charles you can contact the new editor of Fortross here

    new editor Joaquin Flores (findmeflores at gmail.com) to future emails!

    • Charles II said

      Thanks, Jo. Yes, to be fair, the editor of Fortruss has his e-mail prominently listed.

      It’s not enough of a deal that I feel like filing a complaint. But there’s a lot that gets posted uncritically and without later reflection on whether it was accurate or not. If the rebels want their side of the story to be taken seriously, they’re going to have to do a lot better.

      I think the question of exactly what happened at Debaltsevo is an important example. It should not be a big deal to count the number and type of Kievan vehicles and heavy weapons destroyed or captured, documenting that with photos, GPS coordinates, and serial numbers when possible. An honest count of rebel materiel lost likewise should be straightforward. An honestly documented count like that would make it into western media, especially if a reporter from The Guardian or Der Spiegel or Paris Match were allowed to check it. If this really was the great victory claimed on rebel sites, that should already be out there.

      I do think that a lot of what appears in the western media amounts to anti-Russian propaganda. Certainly reading the Kyiv Post is an experience. But to counter that, the rebels need to avoid seeing the world only as friends and enemies. The Ukrainian conflict is not black-and-white. People living along longitude 27 E have good historical reasons not to trust Russia. Unless a person trying to describe the situation can see it as viewed by both people in Slavic regions and in non-Slavic regions, they aren’t going to be able to make an argument that persuades anyone besides those already persuaded.

      Again, thanks for pointing to the e-mail address of Joaquin Flores. I will add that to the body of this post.

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