Who, really, is the war criminal?
So what does President Joe Biden want the sanctions imposed on Russia to do? Think back to the 1990s and what the US-NATO imposed no-fly zone and sanctions did to the people of Iraq? The results were almost 1 million Iraqis dead, according to the website GlobalIssues.org.
Over at truthout.org, Jake Batinga reported that President Joe Biden strongly supported those sanctions as a US senator and recently has turned a blind eye to the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Afghanistan: “Senator Biden strongly supported the sanctions and advocated for even more aggressive policies toward Iraq. Biden was not then, and is not now, known for his humanitarian impulses or dovish foreign policy stances.”
Batinga also notes that: “More Afghans are poised to die from US sanctions over the next few months alone than have died at the hands of the Taliban and US military forces over the last 20 years combined— by a significant margin. Yet, as journalist Murtaza Hussain recently wrote, US establishment politicians and intellectuals who decried the humanitarian crisis during the fall of Kabul are seemingly unbothered by imminent mass starvation, imposed by us.”
The Biden administration— which routinely laments human rights violations perpetrated by China, Iran, Russia, and other adversaries— is ignoring desperate pleas from humanitarian organizations and UN human rights bodies, choosing instead to maintain policies virtually guaranteed to cause mass starvation and death of civilians, especially children. Yet it is important to note, and remember, that as a matter of policy, this is not particularly new; the US has often imposed harsh economic sanctions, causing mass civilian death. A previous imposition of sanctions resulted in one of the worst humanitarian catastrophes, one largely forgotten in mainstream historical memory.
In 1990, the US imposed sanctions on Iraq through the UN following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. These sanctions continued for more than a decade after Iraq withdrew from Kuwait, and had horrific humanitarian consequences eerily similar to the imminent mass starvation of Afghan civilians. The sanctions regime against Iraq— which began under President George H.W. Bush but was primarily administered by President Bill Clinton’s administration— froze Iraq’s foreign assets, virtually banned trade, and sharply limited imports. These sanctions crashed the Iraqi economy and blocked the import of humanitarian supplies, medicine, food, and other basic necessities, killing scores of civilians.”
BRIC’s made of straw
The BRIC nations, Brazil, Russia, India and China have been in the news lately and for good reason. There is talk, and talk is cheap of course, of China and Russia creating an alternative payment system to the US dollar dominated international payments system SWIFT.
Already Russia has joined China’s Cross Border Interbank Payment System Payment as an alternative to SWIFT, along with joining China’s UnionPay credit card system which serves as an alternative to Visa and Master Card who, along with dozens of other Western country businesses (Europe, USA plus Japan and South Korea), bolted Russia’s marketplace after its military operation got started in Ukraine in late February.
India apparently is trading with Russia in a rupee, ruble swap but that seems ad hoc, at best. And there is news of Saudi Arabia cutting a deal with China to use the yuan as an exchange currency. Brazil has enough internal problems to deal with: crime, disease, Amazon deforestation.
Chinese leaders must realize that if Russia falters in Ukraine which means it is unable to liberate the Republics of Luhansk and Donetsk, gain international recognition of Crimea—and maintain territorial gains made on the coast of the Black and Azov Sea’s—and/or President Putin is removed from office and Russia destabilizes, the United States will chop up Russia into separate republics, steal its resources and cancel the billions in deals signed with China for oil, gas, and grains
The United States will bring the NATO military alliance to China’s doorstep and likely put on show trials in the International Criminal Court arguing that Putin and his general staff are war criminals, which would be utter nonsense given US policies and actions in Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen.
China is trying to placate the US because it still fears US economic and military power. Its party officials probably figure that they can keep building up the People’s Liberation Army, Navy, Air Force and Strategic nuclear capability and when there is enough firepower, will be able to challenge US dominance in the Pacific. But how?
The PLA forces have no modern combat experience to speak of and their plan seems to be; well, no plan at all. They are faced with the combined forces of the USA that are building new aircraft carriers, submarines and long distance B-21 bombers, along with upgrading all three legs of its nuclear TRIAD.
Which brings us back to Russia and the economic support it needs so that Biden’s sanctions don’t end up killing a million Russians. Because that is what Biden intends and his track record on supporting sanctions is disturbingly clear. When China looks at what the USA-NATO have done to the Russian economy, they are looking at their own future.
Joe Scalice at the World Socialist Website notes the hypocrisy of the USA-NATO and the compliant MSM Western media:
“The wars of aggression of Clinton, Bush, Obama and Trump contained the accumulated evil of the torture in Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, the drone bombing of children at play, villages leveled by precision missiles and refugees drowned in the Mediterranean. Baghdad crumbled beneath the shock and awe of unstinting US bombing; Fallujah burned with white phosphorus.
The American mass media is complicit in these crimes. They never challenged the government’s assertions, but trumpeted its pretexts. They whipped up a war-frenzy in the public. Pundits who now denounce Putin were ferocious in demanding that the United States bomb civilians.
Thomas Friedman wrote in the New York Times in 1999 of the bombing of Serbia under Clinton, “It should be lights out in Belgrade: every power grid, water pipe, bridge, road and war-related factory has to be targeted… [W]e will set your country back by pulverizing you. You want 1950? We can do 1950. You want 1389? We can do 1389 too.” [Biden supported bombing Belgrade]
Biden labels Putin a war criminal in the midst of a new media hysteria. Never referring to the actions of the United States, never pausing for breath, the media pumps out the fuel for an ever-expanding war. Hubris and hypocrisy stamp every statement from Washington with an audacity perhaps unique in world history. Its hands bathed in blood up to the elbows, US empire gestures at its enemies and cries war crimes.”
Indeed, the media have capitulated to the war propaganda narrative of the Biden Administration. The US MSM relies almost exclusively on Ukrainian sources for its error filled reporting. If you are reading the New York Times or the Washington Post, you aren’t getting the full story. Pro-Russia sites like Southfront, Newsfront, War Gonzo and others tell a different story. For example, the Retroville Mall destruction on March 21 was reported in the West as a wanton and random attack on a shopping place. In fact, the below-building parking lot was home to Ukrainian military vehicles clearly shown by a set of photos that appeared on Newsfront. Residential buildings are clearly being used by the Ukrainian forces to hide their weapons or launch anti-tank attacks from apartment building roofs or top floor apartments. That’s a tactic that makes sense. The Russians know that.
You’ve got to look at all the news sources, even the ones you don’t want to view, in order to be informed about this conflict.
John Stanton can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.