What Ukrainians should do? | By S R H Hashmi


What Ukrainians should do?

SAM Ben-Meir concludes his article titled ‘For Ukraine, the time is now’ (March 16) saying: “Let us rise to the moment and take up our arms to defend our brothers and sisters from unspeakable cruelty.

Unborn generations to come will thank us and honour the sacrifice we made on their behalf.

” This is about the best example of the saying “Barking up the wrong tree. ” What else could one say after seeing the response of the foreign inciters, supporters and backers of Volodymyr Zelenskyy who had vastly over-estimated the price US and NATO will be willing to pay and the risk they would take to establish and maintain their client-state at the doorstep of Russia?

To start with, what has happened to Ukraine has not happened for the first time in human history or even in the recent history!

However, we did not see similar outrage expressed against unjust, illegal and brutal invasion by US and its allies of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya, which caused death and suffering on a much larger scale.

And there are of course the Palestinian-Israeli and Kashmir issues which do not stir up similar sentiments in the West at personal, state or institutional levels.

In fact, Israel has been created, nourished, nurtured and made the monster that it has become through the active help of the US and its allies which have also been protecting Israel at the UN Security Council through the misuse of their veto powers.

For this reason, the same countries hardly sound convincing howling against human rights violations and human suffering to which they have themselves been contributing regularly.

The readers are invited to read the November 2001article titled ‘We think the Price is Worth it’ (link: https://fair.

org/extra/we-think-the-price-is-worth-it/) wherein, when asked about the death of nearly half a million Iraqi children as a result of US sanctions, US secretary of state Madeleine Albright said “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price–we think the price is worth it.”

The article also tells about US causing death and misery through other means, like deliberately stopping treatment of water for human consumption to spread diseases.

The obvious reason for this selective outrage is that the victims this time are Europeans while the attacker belongs to the opposition group comprising Russia and China, who together are seen as a challenge to the continuing attempt to dominate the world by the US and its Western allies whose era is over but who are unwilling to accept this bitter reality.

And worse still, lacking courage, they are unwilling to take steps that could result in a direct confrontation with Russia and effect their comfort level by threatening their life and limb.

I may as well mention here that the conscientious people of Britain had staged massive protests against Iraq invasion.

They even managed to chase the then British Prime Minister Tony Blair out of 10, Downing Street and finished his otherwise promising political career.However, at state level, Tony Blair was let off the hook through an ineffective inquiry.

Coming back to Ukraine, it is more than obvious that with clear knowledge of intolerance of the US and its allies of the rising power of China and Russia, and their conspiracies against both, Vladimir Putin or just any Russian leader would not have allowed turning of Ukraine into a client-state of his sworn enemies.

In fact, as far back as 2008, the US president had agreed not to offer ‘membership action plan’ – a process to eventual membership of NATO – to Ukraine.

quite recently, Russian President Vladimir Putin had again demanded security guarantees from the US and NATO.

The Russian leader also presented a draft treaty that called for restrictions on US and NATO political and military activities, including a ban on NATO expansion to which the Biden administration submitted a written response in January, the details of which remain undisclosed.

However, it appears that the Biden administration rejected the Russian request of never ever making Ukraine a NATO member.

Instead, Biden submitted fresh proposals for security in the region which obviously did not satisfy Putin.

It should have been obvious to everyone that having suffered dismemberment of the Soviet Union at the hands of US and its allies, Putin would not tolerate transformation of Ukraine into a client state for NATO, to be used as a launching pad for overt and covert operations for further destabilising the region and undermining the security of Russia.

Moreover, Sam Ben-Meir claims the following: “Putin’s precipitous invasion of Ukraine has already begun to cool the warming relations between Russia and China – as China has historically stood on the side of stability, peace and the respect for sovereign borders, all of which were trampled on the moment Putin initiated this war of conquest.

” And on the basis of the above, he suggests:“Biden should seize on this tension between Moscow and Beijing, using it to further isolate Russia and draw China closer to the West as the more reliable partner in furthering a new global era of stability, growth, and the rule of law.

” What a joke! Anyway, if China has risen to the level that it has within a few decades, it would not be so gullible as to fall into the divide-and-rule trap which the writer proposes.

Also, China knows well that because of its massive military and economic power, plus expanding influence over the globe, it is the real target of the group.

And having suffered as much as the Ukrainians have done they, and their leaders must realize that their future is safer integrating with the regional powers rather than counting on distant ‘friends’ who only want to use them, like they used, and abandoned Afghans.

— The writer is senior political analyst based in Karachi.


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