Putin = War Criminal
- Apr 18, 2013
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
Rewriting History, Putin Pitches Russia as Defender of an Expanding Motherland - The Moscow Times
In an emotional and angry speech, the president justified his decision to recognize breakaway states in Eastern Ukraine as independent.
President Vladimir Putin pitched Moscow as a defender of its historical motherland on a crusade to protect Russians and Russian speakers from “genocide” as he justified the dramatic decision to recognize the independence of pro-Russian separatsts in Eastern Ukraine late on Monday. In an hour-long emotional, and occasionally angry, address to the nation, Putin outlined his interpretation of Ukrainian history and what he sees as persecution of Russians in the Donbas, concluding that he was left with no choice but to recognize the breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states. In Putin’s telling, that is a “culture and tradition” inherently Russian in nature, since he has repeatedly expressed skepticism toward the idea of a separate Ukrainian historical identity. Putin also dedicated lengthy sections of his speech to undermining Ukraine’s sovereignty — describing Kyiv’s status as the capital of an independent sovereign country as little more than a gift from Moscow. The implication being that it is Moscow’s to potentially take back. Eventually turning to the current standoff, he accused leaders in Kyiv of escalating the situation in the eastern part of Ukraine, saying they have “embarked on the path of violence, bloodshed, lawlessness, and they do not recognize any other solution to the Donbass issue, except a military one.”
The speech was the culmination of a years-long campaign by Putin to rewrite the history of the Russian-Ukrainian relationship, experts said. Prior to Monday’s address, Putin’s most substantial thinking on the Ukraine issue had been outlined in a lengthy essay — “on the historical unity of Russians and Ukranians” — published last July. Analysts saw a clear line between that essay and the content of Monday’s speech. But many fear the immediate act — recognition of the Donetsk and Luhansk Peoples’ Republics — is far from the extent of Putin’s true ambitions. “This will affect not only Ukraine, but other ex-Soviet countries — starting with Belarus and Moldova and ending with Kazakhstan and the rest of Central Asia,” said political scientist Ilya Graschenkov. “Recognizing the DPR and the LPR seems to be only a small episode in the much larger issue of restoring the Soviet Union — if not to its previous borders, at least in the format of a mini-U.S.S.R.” Putin’s interpretation of Ukrainian history — a combination of cherry-picking facts, purposeful misinterpretation and conspiracy theories — has been dismissed by experts as a “dangerously distorted reading of the past.”
As I and others have previously noted, with the dissolution of the USSR in December 1991, the new countries of the Russian Federation, Ukraine, and Belarus were all created as new independent nations by the signing of the Belovezha Accords.
These three new countries, and their agreed upon borders, were accepted as such by the United Nations. The new Russian Federation inherited the Security Council veto presviously held by the former Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic.
If Ukraine is not a viable country as Putin maintains, then neither are the Russian Federation and Belarus.