Ukraine: reviving cold war lies - and dangers - for their own benefit

Workers' Fight workplace bulletin editorials
1 February 2022

Hoping to fit in a "Churchill moment", before responding to the barrage of calls for his resignation, Johnson flew to Ukraine.  He aimed to stick his nose into the latest efforts of “diplomacy” with Russia.

    However it seems that there is already some winding down of the West’s drum-beating.  On Monday, Russia’s UN ambassador “launched a blistering attack” on the US for “whipping up hysteria” over a potential invasion by Russia.  Putin has now written a letter to Washington.

    Both Putin and his foreign secretary Lavrov have consistently denied any intention of going to war.  The military deployment along Ukraine’s border is meant to act as a bargaining chip.  Because for Putin, the real military threat is perceived to come from NATO.  For years he has complained about the siting of NATO missiles and the military support to countries along Russia's western border, including to Ukraine.  This was one of the reasons for his 2014 occupation of east Ukraine and Crimea - and the fact that these regions were mainly Russian-speaking and identifying, thus for Putin, "rightfully" Russian.

    Now, however, he is demanding that NATO drop its policy which allows countries to become members, since Ukraine is set to join.  He has a point.  NATO, established during the Cold War to "resist" the then USSR, was never disbanded when the USSR collapsed, even though the lie that it had ever posed any real threat to the West was finally exposed.

    Today, the revival of Cold War rhetoric serves the same purpose as ever. Hyping up the threat of war with Russia is a distraction from the domestic crises western leaders find themselves in. And in the same way it suits Putin to play strongman against NATO, given his growing popular discredit.

    So these degenerate leaders tell lies about imminent war to appear as saviours of peace. The mortal danger for the populations on the ground is, however, that they act on their lies, either by intention, or by error.