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Killer Pacifists – Thoughts on Russia’s War on Ukraine

Why we must arm Ukraine.

I think I am a pacifist because I am against war and against all armed conflicts in general. Personally I would never go to war, certainly not with a weapon in my arms, largely because of my pacifism, but also because I am not brave. Unlike the Ukrainian people.

But what we see in Germany and the rest of Europe is a very different kind of pacifism. A murderous kind, a “pacifism” fuelled by what can only be hatred against the Ukrainian nation, hatred which these “pacifists” imbibed with the russian propaganda. I want to briefly blog about it.

There are growing calls to stop sending weapons to Ukraine, even demonstrations demanding a “peace without arms”. There are open letters by intellectuals who call for cessation of all military support to Ukraine, combined with demands for Ukrainian people to surrender unconditionally, accept russian rule, and beg russians for mercy. There are despicable greedy gits like Germany’s ex-chancellor Gerhard Schröder, always ready to accuse Ukraine and to defend his friend and paymaster putin. There are EU politicians refusing to arm Ukraine because they say one must appease the russian Führer in order to avoid a bigger war, but these same politicians were so far more than happy to arm russia. There is allegedly “neutral” Switzerland forbidding others to send Ukraine ammunition which was made in Switzerland on the argument of same “neutrality” which allowed this country to enrich itself doing business once with Nazi Germany and later with Fascist Russia. The European countries most opposing a fossil fuel embargo claiming it would undermine their economic strength needed to help Ukraine are incidentally also the ones who do the least to help Ukraine.

This is not pacifism, this has nothing to do with peace-making. This is appeasement of a murderous dictatorship and endorsement of genocide. Until Bucha, Europeans largely relied on russian propaganda lies about “precision” attacks on Ukrainian military targets only. Even when a civilian target like the birth clinic in Mariupol was destroyed by bombs, our media presented the russian explanation of “Ukrainian Nazis did it!” as just as credible.

Now the world knows what russian army is and what it does in Ukraine every day. There isn’t a war crime russians haven’t committed in Ukraine yet. And while some of our elites still blame putin alone, it is not putin personally who tortures, rapes, murders and robs in Ukraine. Yes, the russian soldiers are given orders to bomb and shoot civilians, and they execute these orders with pleasure (including writing “Christ is Risen” on artillery shells they shoot into Ukrainian cities on Easter). Russians behave like the German soldiers behaved in Ukraine in WW2, and their excuse of just following orders did not pull in the Nuremberg Trials. Besides, even russian generals never issue any direct orders to rape, torture and kill prisoners, women and children whom russian soldiers snatch off the streets. This happens on russian soldiers’ own initiative, just like their bizarre robbery of washing machines, used underwear and toilets: because they know they can.

So our European pacifists know all these atrocities are real. They know what happened in Bucha and Borodianka, and they know that as horrible as it is, is just an prelude to the hell happening in Mariupol. And to what is happening in all areas occupied by russians, in Kherson, around Kharkiv, Mykolayiv and in Donbass. The aerial pictures of gigantic mass graves russians dug out and filled around Mariupol provide a clue. By the way, the graves are dug and the bodies are buried there by starving citizens of Mariupol, because this is the only way to obtain food from russian occupants. Maybe this is why the pacifists demand of Europe to let russia win, or at least to freeze the line of conflict so they will never have to find out what russians did on these territories?

Otherwise, why do they demand for let Russia win this war? Let us set aside the fact that if russia were allowed to conquer Ukraine, it would most definitely not stop, but attack the Baltic states, Poland and probably some other Eastern European countries next, which would destroy the EU, democracy, western economies and, worse of all, these pacifists’ cushy lives of caviar communism. Let us assume these pacifist really believe putin would stop if he gets Ukraine. They know what his plans for Ukraine are: to bomb, shoot, and starve everyone who feels Ukrainian, deport millions to colonise Siberia and enslave the rest to provide food for russia. Because this is how russians proceeded in every place they occupied. Every person they tortured, raped and shot was accused of being a Ukrainian nationalist – simply because they were public officials, or owned a flag, or owned books on Ukrainian history, or had a Ukrainian tattoo, or spoke Ukrainian, or had a relative who fought against russian invasion in Donbass (which started in 2014), or had a name occupants didn’t like. Almost a million of Ukrainians went through so-called filtration camps, those suspected to be “nationalists” were abducted to be tortured and killed, others, including countless children, were forcibly deported, often to the russian far east.

Protest against mass rapes in Ukraine in front of russian embassy in Riga, Latvia (credit: LSM.lv)

But our pacifist politicians and other elites would never call all this a genocide. Because of Never Again. If you call something a genocide you must act, so don’t call it anything. Especially if you anyway don’t like the people being exterminated.

How can someone be so cruel? What kind of pacifism is that? I think this can be only explained with a hatred towards Ukrainian nation these pacifists share with putin whose needs they claim to understand so well. They must believe in russia’s propaganda that Ukraine is a nation of thieving criminals, Hitler-worshipping Nazis, war-mongering monsters who slaughter everyone daring to read Pushkin. Even now our media continues the tired old and incorrect story of Bandera and Azov to discredit Ukrainians as Nazis, and never mind that there are no far-right parties in Ukrainian parliament, but look inside EU states like France, Italy, Germany etc. Surely we must sacrifice these Bandera Nazis for the prospect of eternal peace and friendship with the great russian people?

This is the kind of pacifism which condones a mass murder to protect your own wealth and comfort, earned in part thanks to cheap russian fossil fuels. Our pacifists know what will happen to millions of Ukrainians if they let russia win. They can’t be so stupid to believe russia will suddenly show mercy. There will be even more mass executions, mass rapes and mass deportations to Siberia, more concentration camps, slave labour, intentionally induced famines (all of this already started), to once and for all exterminate Ukrainians as a nation, something putin openly announced to do. Our pacifists won’t shed a tear.

And then there is of course whataboutism, a practice invented by USSR, continued by putin’s russia and beloved by western pacifists. Didn’t USA also start unjust wars? Didn’t American soldiers also commit war crimes?

I am not sure about the logic there. Because US started some stupid, pointless wars now it’s Russia turn? Besides, say what you want about Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan or Iraq, USA never decided to invade and destroy a democratic, peace-loving nation which never threatened anyone. But russia did, that despite Ukraine trying to be friends with its aggressive neighbour even as russia started the war in 2014.

Sure, US “precision weapons” used in Iraq were never that precise and caused “collateral damage”, but russian army deliberately bombs high-rise buildings, hospitals, schools and train stations exactly because these are such easy targets to hit for maximum causalities. Without defending the war crimes US soldiers and mercenaries committed in Vietnam and Iraq, these individual US war criminals had to hide their crimes to avoid punishment, while russian war crimes are systemic, the perpetrators even receive medals after their crimes became known.

And what kind of logic is this anyway? US attacked Iraq for no good reason, so let russia kill all Ukrainians for compensation? Because Germans had their fun in WW2 now it’s russia’s turn? Because Americans dropped 2 nuclear bombs on Japan, why shouldn’t russia have the right to do the same with Ukraine?

By the way, had we sanctioned russian fossil fuels and its economy when putin sent its army to commit same kind of war crimes in Chechnya and later in Syria, there wouldn’t have been any war in Ukraine. But our love for russia, its culture and its fossil fuels is bigger than anything we might ever feel for the lives of people in far away countries.

Dear pacifists, go live in your beloved russia. Why not, afraid they will kill you there for views and lifestyles?

Слава Україні! Героям слава!

Please find charities to donate here at taz. Prof Timothy Snyder lists ways to help Ukrainian army and civilian help charities here. Or donate to a humanitarian charity project of your choice. Ukrainians are fighting for all of us.


14 comments on “Killer Pacifists – Thoughts on Russia’s War on Ukraine

  1. When has “we found no evidence of misconduct” become a thing in academia? Another one, “we’ll not update you while the investigation is ongoing, and we have no deadline for it.”

    Now all the same is happening at a higher level, although we had it for a while here, too (see MH17).

    Nukes would be a level-up, but will something change?

    Also, Western pacifists, a rouble apiece.

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    • I found this on Unian Telegram, a perfect description of russia and its attitude.

      Российский комик Светлаков, когда-то рассказал случай, который ему рассказала проводница РЖД. По его словам, и мы с ним согласны, этот случай в принципе объясняет все.

      Короче, однажды проводница прибегает к начальнику поезда и кричит, чтобы он побежал в ее вагон. Тот побежал за ней, заходят они в тамбур, где стоит голый бухой мужик, который весь измазан дерьмом. При этом дерьмом измазан весь тамбур, стены, окна, короче говоря, абсолютно все. Начальник поезда начинает на него кричать, а тот поворачивается и кричит: “А ты докажи, что это сделал я!”.

      Вот заявление Минобороны России о том, что в Буче не был убит ни один гражданский из этой оперы. Все абсолютно залито кровью, везде валяются трупы гражданских, сотни, тысячи свидетелей зверств, а тут выходит такой Путин (Шойгу, Герасимов, Матвиенко и прочие моральные уроды) и говорят: “А вот докажите, что это мы!”.

      Россия сегодня, перепачканная говном и кровью – это этот мужик. Это и есть их ментальный код, который не меняgется и постоянно воспроизводится.

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  2. hackemesser

    Ukraine cannot win the war. Ukraine can only extend the war, on cost of many lives and much destroyed infrastructure. The west cannot change the outcome by weapon deliveries. And by actively joining the conflict we end with a hot war between NATO and Russia, both of which are sitting on a huge stock of nuclear rockets. Worst case scenario is complete and utter destruction of life on Earth. If I have to choose, I sacrifice Ukraine’s membership in Europe/NATO – where it would not be anyway if not for a successful US instigated revolution and pampering real Nazi militias with weapons, causing the death and prolonged ethnic conflict between Ukrainians and ethnic Russians.

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    • I was about to dicuss your first points but then you called Maidan revolution “US instigated Nazi militias”.
      Go away with your racism please. Really, you proved my point about Ukraine-hating pacifism

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    • Russia cannot win this war. If they occupy the country they will need much more people than what they have in their army right now. And sending most of their army there would mean that the rest of their territory is up for grabs and undefended, so it is not going to happen. Look at how many Americans were in Afghanistan and whether that was enough to pacify the country. And the talibans did not have anything like the drones, tanks, and missiles the Ukrainians have.

      There are millions of Ukrainians, occupation is completely unrealistic, even in the Dombas. And if they don’t occupy the whole country, they will have to deal with guerillas supplied from the rest of Ukraine and neighbouring countries for decades. If we let the Ukrainians alone, it will be a protracted war for decades before Russia bleeds itself dry trying to control it. Minimising human suffering means making sure Russia loses now, as quickly as possible.

      The pacifists are right on one count, a direct military intervention by western counties would escalate the conflict in an very difficult to control way, and would have a high likelihood of ending with a couple of atomic bombs being dropped. However, acknowledging that fact does not mean that we have to let whole populations be bombed, starved, and tortured because a tin pot dictator next door felt like invading. It must be clear that the consequences of a war of agression are the ruin for the aggressor. Otherwise we just set the stage for further agression down the road, which at one point will directly affect EU (or NATO) members. Then, appeasement would have gained exactly nothing but suffering for millions of people, and we’d still be hours away from a nuclear war.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. santojohnny

    While I agree with you wholeheartedly regarding the despicable atrocities being committed by the russian army against Ukraine, doing so does not require saying ridiculous things (which you did many times in this post).

    Russia did not invent whataboutism. That’s a strange thing to say. The idea that a particular country/nation is responsible for “inventing” a common rhetorical device is pretty silly.
    You write “Besides, say what you want about Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan or Iraq, USA never decided to invade and destroy a democratic, peace-loving nation which never threatened anyone.” Oh please. You similarly disregard the millions of people murdered by American military might. These weren’t pointless, stupid wars. “Oh, I’m sorry, we accidentally dropped bombs killing 15 percent of Koreans! sorry we didn’t mean it in a bad way!” They were evil and racist wars, that were planned and executed with gung-ho enthusiasm and dedication. It is ignorant to make the claims you are making about russian imperialism and then stumble over your lack of knowledge (or if not lack of knowledge, purposeful manipulation of historical record) of American imperialism. It makes your righteousness sound phony.

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    • Right, let’s continue your logic. If US is just like putin’s russia, and their wars are same, it means their enemies are same, too. Hence, I didn’t know Ukraine was actually just like North Korea (which btw attacked its southern neighbour).
      Just because it was wrong to drop two nuclear bombs on Japan doesn’t mean Ukraine is just like the mass-murdering Japanese empire of WW2.
      Just because the Iraq war was wrong and caused huge suffering doesn’t mean Zelenskyy is just like Saddam Hussein.
      Your whataboutism only serves to convince yourself that Ukrainians are no innocent victims either.
      All wars are wrong, but some wars are much more horrible and unjust than others. But maybe you believe WW2 and the Holocaust were also nothing special, look what US did in Vietnam and so on, right?

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      • santojohnny

        With all due respect, this didn’t continue my logic. I would be happy to come to a common understanding, but it requires not putting words in other people’s mouths (which I tried not to do in my comment, and if I failed to do so, I’d be glad to be corrected). You accurately state the following: “All wars are wrong, but some wars are much more horrible and unjust than others.” You then arbitrarily decide how unjust and horrible certain historical events were and conclude that if I do not agree with you unilaterally, then it is plausible that I may believe that “WW2 and the holocaust were nothing special,” something no sane person believes.

        First of all, it’s not a contest. It’s not about ranking people/countries by how evil they are. My point is that we don’t need to tell ourselves fairy tales about history in order to make a point. It’s counterproductive.

        You seem to believe that the US only reacts to prevent mass murder, and in so doing commit unfortunate atrocities along the way. If this were true, then I wouldn’t bother replying because I would be in full agreement with you. However, not only is this false, it’s actively misleading and leads you to whitewash one country’s crimes in the name of correctly criticizing another’s. The list is so long it’s not worth going into. I’d say the covert support and gleeful reaction to half a million or more murdered Indonesians by a genocidal government is a good starting point.

        Do you not notice the irony of mentioning Saddam Hussein in your criticism of my supposed whataboutism?

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      • Then I am not sure what you try to prove.

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    • It is a bit strange to put the Korean War with all of this (it was an ally being invaded, the American side had more than the US, and the other side was equally murderous, nothing like Afghanistan, Viêt Nam, or even worse Iraq).

      Recent US adventures (so, the Gulf wars, Afghanistan and Iraq) were essentially war for resources. At no point was the population targeted in its entirety and, whilst I am the first to denounce American war crimes, which certainly did happen, they do not involve anything like what just happened in Bucha or Mariupol. Or Aleppo, or Grozny, if you want to broaden the perspective a bit. Not even close. Name a single city with 90% of its building destroyed by American bombs since Dresden.

      But then, all of this is completely missing the point. The US are not attacked by Russia, and they did not attack anyone in Ukraine. Saying that Ukraine deserves it and we should just let Russia carry on because the US misbehaved is utterly stupid and irrelevant.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Remember the post-Yugoslavia war, when the leaders of Croatia and Serbia decided to carve up Bosnia between them, and to kill anyone without a Croatian or Serbian surname? Russia backed Serbia and Germany (or at least the CDU) backed Croatia. The response of the rest of Europe was to impose an arms embargo on the area so that Bosnian loyalists couldn’t defend themselves, with the same rationale — the partition and mass murder were going to happen anyway, so they might as well happen quickly.

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    • Everyone for their own religion. As it happens, now Serbia (and much of Greece) support russian genocide in Ukraine because russians are fellow Orthodox and Ukrainians are presumably all Jews and Muslims.

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      • Wrong!

        Ukrainians are atheists, or heretics, or Greek Catholics, neither is a real faith!

        I heard that from an old teacher, who had read it on a popular Russian war-themed forum. So this might be the ultimate truth!

        Liked by 1 person

      • And Nazis 🙄

        Like

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