The Nuremberg Tribunal after WWII declared: “To initiate a war of aggression is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.” There is no doubt that the Putin government in Russia has committed the “supreme international crime”. Russian tanks and bombers and infantry crossed the frontier and are attacking Ukraine. The invasion deserves to be condemned.
Any government in Moscow, however, would have had to deal with NATO’s tearing up of the commitment made in 1989 by Reagan’s Secretary of State James Baker and West German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher, endorsed by Britain and France, that if Russia allowed Germany to be unified NATO would not be extended beyond the new borders. After suffering 20 million dead in a German war of extermination until 1945, the Russian people, Russia – and, yes, that includes the Putin Government – has an unchallengeable right to have that agreement respected.
But what are we to make of those politicians who condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine but endorsed – or ignored - the NATO attack on Iraq, Afghanistan and many other countries? What about the US and Britain’s arms sales to the bestial Saudi regime that has allowed the catastrophic devastation of Yemen and fortunes to be made that join with Russian oligarchs to finance the British Tory Party?
And what of Britain, the fantasy defender of the rights of nations subject to aggression, selling arms including sniper rifle parts to Israel to effect the mass murder in Gaza of unarmed demonstrators? Those assassinated were demanding their right to return to their homes, a right endorsed by Britain and the US at the UN as a condition of allowing “democratic” Israel to be admitted to that body.
Every politician who condemns the Russian invasion of Ukraine, who ratchets up the bellicose rhetoric without opposing Israel’s crimes against humanity, is a liar and a deceiver; their talk of defending the Ukrainian people is a dangerous deception. Much of the public discussion of the crisis has been nothing but drum beats for the isolation of Russia under any conceivable government. It carefully avoids any mention of NATO’s violent history, even of its malign role in Afghanistan until a few weeks ago.
Russia is shelling and bombing Ukrainians and hundreds have probably died, most of whom do not support the neo-Nazi formation of the Ukrainian military (the Azov Battalion) or endorse the Ukrainian regime’s attacks on the right of Ukrainian citizens to speak and work in their mother tongue, Russian.
But the USA didn't just shell and bomb; with British political support it used B52s to carpet-bomb Vietnamese into submission, to deny their overwhelming majority desire to live free of French or US rule.
You cannot be a brutal rapist on many city streets and be accepted as a defender of human rights in another part of town. Yet that is what we are being asked to believe about NATO, the enabler or direct perpetrator of crimes against humanity, a repeat offender of what the Nuremberg Tribunal called “the supreme international crime”.
Men and women view from Gaza, Yemen and Iraq the phoney outrage from Western politicians bought and paid for by arms companies. They need to hear voices that challenge the hypocrites and warmongers in the name of opposition to militarism and ALL aggressive wars, especially those launched by our own corrupt government and its lickspittle lackeys in the media.
Dissident voices are being heard in Russian cities; it would be an unforgiveable crime to betray those courageous fighters against Russian militarism by endorsing the militarism of NATO.
Martin Luther King was only stating the obvious - a truth never to be heard on the BBC – “The greatest purveyor of violence in the world: My own Government, I can not be silent.” How despicable are those voices claiming the moral high ground for NATO and covering up its record.
In memory of the 20 million Russian dead in WWII, the three million Indo-Chinese killed by US forces, countless millions of others, in solidarity with the Palestinian people suffering brutal violence designed to drive them from their homeland, we need to see an end to NATO.