This article arrived as a comment on Sara Flounders article, “Which way for the antiwar movement? Demand ‘Negotiations’ or ‘Stop the Wars’?” which is current featured on this blog. It is really too long for the comment section, but well worth reading so I decided to post as an article. Thank you for your insight and initiative Suzanne Schwartz. [jb]
Open letter to Congresswoman Teresa Leger Fernandez and Colleagues in Congress.
Here is what I just wrote to my congressional representative and her colleagues:
On February 24, 2022, you released the following statement on your website:
“My prayers are with the sovereign and free people of Ukraine. Putin is a tyrant and thug. From state-sponsored cyber-attacks to election interference, Putin has attacked our democracy, threatened our allies, and undermined the rule of law. Russia’s unprovoked and brutal attack on Ukraine is also an attack on global peace and security. Americans must be united in our opposition to tyranny. The United States and our allies will hold Putin and Russia accountable. I stand with President Biden, and we stand with the Ukrainian people in their desire for freedom. I support the President’s actions to impose significant costs on Russia and defend our NATO allies. America will stand up to Putin to protect what we love–freedom and peace. My heart is with the proud people of Ukraine and the soldiers and civilians in harm’s way due to Russia’s needless aggression.”
I find this statement to be very disturbing on a number of levels.
- Name calling is the lowest form of communication except for physical violence. We teach our children that name calling is the activity of bullies.
- I strongly object to the simplistic, good vs. evil tone of the statement, which I find provocative, hateful, and contradictory to assertions that you believe our policies should be made from a place of love, to the point of hypocrisy.
- The assertions you make in your rhetoric have either been debunked long ago, are projections, or are about activities engaged in by all sovereign nations worldwide. Are these activities only bad when those you hate do them?
I can only believe from your statements, you are ill informed on the subjects of Russia and Ukraine. I believe it would serve you and your colleagues well to learn about and acknowledge that the war in Ukraine did not begin on Feb 24, 2022, but long before. The recent history that has led to the current existentially dangerous conflict is being ignored or denied on purpose by the United States and its allies.
It is important to understand the central role the United States and NATO have played in the conflict from the start, beginning in 2014 with the U.S. engineered Maidan coup and even before that. The violent coup in February 2014 that overthrew the democratically elected president of the sovereign nation of Ukraine was followed by the breaking apart of Ukraine; the Russian-speaking region of Crimea was declared a sovereign and independent state by Russian President, Vladimir Putin after obtaining the population’s support in a
referendum. A civil war emerged between Kyiv, supported by the United States, and the breakaway republics in Russian-speaking Donbass in the eastern part of Ukraine, supported by Russia.
Over 14,000 Russian speaking Ukrainian civilians and militia were killed by the Ukrainian military during this eight year period. This assault was escalated in late 2021 and early 2022, with massive increases in military support and training from the United States and continued attacks by Kyiv on Donbass, in violation of the 2014 Minsk agreements. Finally, Russia entered directly into the civil war with its Special Military Operation (SMO) on Feb. 24, 2022. The SMO made clear to many of us the reality that what is being played out in Ukraine is not simply a civil war between Kyiv and Donbass, but rather a much larger proxy war between the United States/NATO and Russia, which has been developing for decades and lies at the root of the conflict.
Nine brutal months later, you and your colleagues in DC who have authorized billions of our taxpayer dollars for lethal “aid” to Ukraine, with no accountability as to where the weapons, or the domestic aid for that matter, end up, are on the verge of sending another $37 billion, $22 billion of which is designated for more weapons. How is this helping the proud people of Ukraine and its soldiers?
They are dying.
Negotiations would be free and people would not have to die. Imagine the good those billions of taxpayer dollars could help our struggling population and those in other countries. You and your colleagues in congress and the senate are among the most powerful human beings on the planet. It is your duty to think clearly, to come to understand the complexities of the shifting geopolitical landscape and act responsibly on behalf of all. You have the power to STOP this war you should never have started and all US wars of aggression.
Here are a few questions you and your colleagues with your powerful decision making positions in the halls of congress might ask yourselves.
- Would it not have been better to pursue diplomacy, negotiations, detente from
the outset and staying silent when Boris Johnson sabotaged peace talks in April
2022? You should have stopped the war that never should have started then.
- When you assert that the SMO was unprovoked and unjustified, can you visualize how the United States would react if Canada and Mexico welcomed Russian and Chinese military bases to be installed near international borders, many equipped with nuclear capabilities?
- Do you deny the history of the past decades?
- Do you deny the evil presence of US backed Nazi battalions in the Zelensky regime’s military?
- Do you deny that Biden and others from the west are calling for regime change in Russia?
- What would you do to protect the American people if Putin and Xi Jinping were calling for regime change in the United States of America?
- Do you remember the Cuban missile crisis?
- How are nuclear capable NATO weapons and bases, on Russia’s borders and at the borders of Ukraine combined with the Biden admin and NATO’s calls for regime change any different than if the shoe was on the other foot?
- The United States has at least 750 military bases spread over 80 countries, completely surrounding Russia and China. Russia has 36 and China just five.
- Who is the real aggressor?
- How many Ukrainians have been killed and displaced as a result of prolonging this regime change war with the endless flow of weapons and refusal of the west to negotiate in good faith?
The mainstream media and some in DC are finally starting to recognize that the hate-filled war making approach is failing.
There are starting to be whispers about negotiations, ceasefires, a peace deal.
If you are not familiar with the few facts we’ve laid out, please inform yourselves; the information is available. Dig deeper, join these whispers, turn them into an outcry. Become leaders with courageous we can look up to. Take a pause. Begin by saying NO to Biden’s upcoming massive additional military spending package.
In addition to acknowledging the role the US has and is playing in the destruction of Ukraine and its people, think about the unnecessary pain and suffering you are inflicting on us, your taxpaying constituents, with your brutal sanctions, in your failed effort to weaken Russia and depose its leader. Sanctions kill people. Americans are suffering at your hands. Many Americans will not be celebrating with Thanksgiving dinner this holiday season because of rampant inflation caused your brutal sanctions.
Will you be celebrating Thanksgiving in the safety and warmth of your home with a big meal with your beloved family? Every day, I see more and more homeless New Mexicans on the streets of Taos, Santa Fe, Albuquerque. My heart goes out to them. I give them what I can, but you as our representative have the power to do something real about it. Will you consider in your thankfulness at your big meal, the unnecessary harm you are causing to so many of your fellow New Mexicans?
It is beyond time for the United States of America to play an adult role in the geopolitical landscape which affects every aspect of American life. The United States still controls the Zelensky regime in Ukraine. The United States still has the power to STOP this war immediately. It has the power to lift the sanctions. Will the US government find a reverse gear or continue to play the role of the murderous and cowardly bully of the world in our name and continue to lead the world down the path to nuclear armageddon to its everlasting shame?
As person who talks about policies made from love I hope you will remember what Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. said about love and act accordingly.
“Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already
devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate
cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
I hope you will personally respond.
Norteños for Peaceful and Sustainable Futures
El Prado, New Mexico
Roza Gerasimenko, 69, is overcome with emotion as she surveys the damage to her house following shelling by the Ukrainian army last night ~EPA/Maxim Shipenkov, The Daily Mail