Monday, June 24, 2024

Ukraine: The Antiwar Dilemma

Author: Nan Levinson

Affiliation: American writer, journalist and lecturer in English at Tufts University (Massachusetts, USA)

Organization/Publisher: Counterpunch  

Date/Place: May 19, 2022/USA

Type of Literature: Opinion Article 

Word Count: 2639



Keywords: Ukarine, America, Putin, Zelensky, Biden




The author highlights Americans’ and the American media’s double standards, explaining that Americans are more engaged in a war its country is not officially fighting than in the ones America did fight so brutally and unsuccessfully over the past two decades. And such is the Americans’ concern about the misery of the Ukrainian people and the ruthlessness of Vladimir Putin’s invasion. The tilt of the American government towards Ukraine was made apparent when Zelensky made a demand that any American commitment to Ukraine must include military equipment, and lots of it. The US has obliged: it pledged close to $5 billion in such assistance and President Biden asked Congress for another $20.4 billion for weapons and security measures on April 28th. The demand to replenish the weapons supply is estimated at $8.7 billion for the new package, which has profited the defense contractors and their many benefactors in Congress. However, the arms and ammunition meant for the Ukrainian battlefield won’t necessarily stay on location for what they were intended. The Global Organized Crime Index reports, “While [Ukraine] has long been a key link in the global arms trade, its role has only intensified since the beginning of the conflict in eastern Ukraine.” Ukraine may even have used Western-supplied weapons to attack fuel and research sites inside Russia itself. When the US invaded Iraq and Afghanistan on the flimsiest of pretexts and, in the case of Iraq, outright lies (about Saddam Hussein’s supposed weapons of mass destruction) the US was acting criminally. After these morally murky wars, America now volunteers to fight in Ukraine because it feels like a kind of redemption. The significance of Ukraine’s struggle certainly isn’t in educating Americans, but perhaps it is finally making Americans calculate the costs of war. As the blood and dread and filth of war may make Americans conscious through unyielding reporting, it is possible that Americans would reconsider American militarism and war-frenzy policies. 


By: Maryam Khan, CIGA Research Associate



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