The Crimea referendum: why you probably shouldn’t care

1. Crimea is mostly Russian, has been for a long time, and will be part of Russia from now on as it was before. Might as well get used to it.

Crimea was a part of Russia until 1954, when Nikita Khrushchev, an ethnic Ukrainian, gave Crimea to Ukraine.

The major ethnic groups are: Russians (58.32%), Ukrainians (24.32%), Crimean Tatars (12.10%).

putin obama crimea river funny

Crimea has become part of Russia…

Treaty to accept Crimea, Sevastopol to Russian Federation signed, from RT:

It’s not really a big deal…

Russia has every right to do this…

…and luckily, it’s not your problem!

The treaty has been signed, it’s a done deal. The Russians didn’t invade anyone – or if they did, they did it without firing a shot. Russians in Crimea are happy, Russians in the rest of Russia are happy – get over it!

Chances are, if you’re reading this and it’s the year 2014, the economy of your own country is in serious trouble. Contact your elected representatives and tell them to butt out of Russia’s business and get to work on an economic recovery plan for your country.

Click to access five-point-program.pdf

2. Nobody in Russia wants to invade, annex, or otherwise fight anyone in Ukraine or Europe, least of all Poland!

People in Moscow have strong opinions about the Euro-Maidan protests and the overthrow of the Yanukovych government, but one feeling in particular prevails: sadness. Kiev is considered the “mother of Russian cities” and holds a special place in the hearts of Russians. Nobody has any appetite for war and conquest – only sadness, shock, and even disgust at the senseless destruction of the beautiful city of Kiev over the anti-Russian feelings of a mob composed at least partially of fascist-leaning groups like the Right Sector and Svoboda.

People in Russia have no desire for war. They hate it, because frankly, it sucks. They have no desire to fight the US or any EU member state. Most Muscovites only wish to get to work through the insane morning traffic jams, earn a good living, and get away to the dacha for the weekend. Annexing Ukraine does not fit into that schedule. Same goes for Poland – so chill out, guys!

This Russian Exclave Has Poland Worried About What Putin Will Do Next:

Seriously, guys. Cool it! Nobody’s going to invade you, OK? You really think Russia is going to risk a war with NATO over you?

Of course, you’ll probably say that history has taught you otherwise. I would suggest that history should have taught you to beware first of fascist coups, you know, like the one that just took place in Ukraine. You know, the country of Stepan Bandera, the hero of the Svoboda Party. Remember him?

It is estimated that nearly 70,000 Poles, mostly women and children along with unarmed men, were killed during the spring and summer campaign of 1943 in Volhynia by the OUN-Bandera which bears primary responsibility for the massacres.

From the BBC:

“I feel threatened by Russia because we’re next. Ukraine is first, then the Baltic countries and then Putin will make something bad here,” Michal, a 30 year-old librarian told me.

“Now they want to attack Ukraine but we are neighbours so I don’t think Poland is safe, especially because we have a shared history with Russia and they were always aggressors,” Dominika Ziolka, a horse-riding instructor said.


3. Nobody in Russia is impressed with US / EU sanctions.

Russian lawmakers ask President Obama to impose sanctions on them all, from RT:

…so Washington came up with sanctions, not on Russia, but on eleven individuals: the deposed Ukrainian president, an advisor to the deposed president, 2 Crimean officials, and 7 Russians.

The choice of the officials is an utter mystery. The seven Russians are a Putin aid, a Putin adviser, four members of the Russian parliament (Duma) and a deputy prime minister. What any of these people had to do with the referendum in Crimea, no one knows.

Sanctions against Russia are generally considered to be as hypocritical as they are weak:

Putin: Crimea similar to Kosovo, West is rewriting its own rule book, from RT:

“Well’ it’s good that they at least recalled that there is international law. Thank you very much. Better late than never,” Putin said adding that in fact nothing of this kind happened.

“Our western partners created the Kosovo precedent with their own hands. In a situation absolutely the same as the one in Crimea they recognized Kosovo’s secession from Serbia legitimate while arguing that no permission from a country’s central authority for a unilateral declaration of independence is necessary,”Putin reminded, adding that the UN International Court of Justice agreed to those arguments.

“That’s what they wrote, that what they trumpeted all over the world, coerced everyone into it – and now they are complaining. Why is that?” he asked.

Freedom Fries!

Well, if the sanctions don’t scare the Russians, maybe we could try renaming food again. Here are some suggestions:

Borscht could be renamed freedom soup, vodka could become spirits of liberty, caviar could be equality eggsand Beef Stroganoff could be Beef Svoboda, or maybe even Beef Bandera!

4. The fact that the EU, the current Ukrainian government, and the US are questioning the level of democracy in Russia and the legitimacy of the referendum in Crimea may also be seen by some as a tad hypocritical.

Hello, World. Here Comes The Welcome Wagon Of Democracy.

When voters in both France and the Netherlands rejected the EU Constitution in 2005, instead of accepting the outcome, the European Union simply re-named the Constitution and re-introduced it as the Lisbon Treaty, forcing Europeans to vote once again.

Even when Irish voters rejected the Lisbon Treaty in 2008, the EU simply changed the rules which mandated that the treaty could only be passed with a unanimous vote from all member states and passed it anyway, flying in the face of any notion of democracy.

The United States and the EU’s denunciation of the Crimean vote is also beyond a joke when one considers the fact that the initial Euromaidan uprising, which led to the violent overthrow of Ukraine’s democratically elected government, was bankrolled by the United States itself via the State Department in concert with groups such as the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Endowment for Democracy.

Ukrainian government vows to track down ‘ringleaders of separatism’

Yatsenyuk: “The ground will burn under their feet.”

Russia Must Stop U.S. Expansion in Ukraine, from the usually Putin-unfriendly Moscow Times:

Moscow does not see the revolution in Ukraine as an attempt to create a more democratic or law-based society. Instead, it sees the events in Kiev as an attempt to make Ukraine as anti-Russian as possible. The new government represents a minority of the Ukrainian population. It wants to suppress the Russian-speaking majority and violate their right to representation by holding unfair elections on May 25.

5. Vladimir Putin may not be trustworthy in your book, and you may not like him, but compared with people like US Secretary of State John Kerry, he’s an angel. Compared with President Obama, he should receive the Nobel Peace Prize!

Yes, you heard me. Vladimir Putin deserves the Nobel Peace Prize. It was President Putin and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (along with the majority of the people throughout America and presumably Europe as well) who prevented Obama and Kerry from carrying out their planned “kinetic military action with no boots on the ground” in Syria.

And don’t forget for one second that it was John Kerry and other Western warmongers who were lying about President Bashar al-Assad’s guilt in the Ghouta chemical attack on his own people, not Putin and Lavrov. During the entire Syria crisis of 2013, not one shred of evidence was produced that Assad had done anything. The only evidence the pro-war Democrats could dig up was that: 1. Assad has chemical weapons, and 2. it seems like the kind of thing he would do. On the contrary, the vast majority of the evidence indicated that the chemical attack was carried out by the rebels in order to gain Western sympathy.

I refer you to my blog post of September 2013: Did Assad gas his own people, or is this a false flag attack by the opposition?

Throughout the Ukraine crisis, I’ve heard over and over again that Putin is not reliable, that he’s a liar, a warmonger, and uses his government-funded propaganda machines like RT to spread his lies. In reply, I would only ask you to look at his recent track record and to compare it with that of his Western counterparts like Barack Obama, John Kerry, and John McCain, or EU pro-austerity leaders like Angela Merkel and Jose Barroso, or the unelected (and unelectable) full-time President of the European Council – Herman Van Rompuy. Or have a look at prominent media figures like Bill O’Reilly and Charles Krauthammer of Fox News, all of which (except Obama himself) believe that Obama is not being tough enough on Putin. If you agree with them that Putin is an incorrigible liar and wreckless warmonger, and what he’s doing in Crimea is an outrage, and what’s happening in Kiev is somehow “democracy,” then who knows? Maybe YOU could become a Fox News Contributor some day!

6. “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism.” People who agree with Putin are NOT anti-American.

And that goes double for me! I love America and always will. Just because I strongly disagree with the foreign policy of the current US administration, that doesn’t mean I’m not a red-blooded, patriotic American. And it also doesn’t mean that I hate Obama. I don’t. In fact, I’m glad he defeated Mitt Romney for the presidency. Mitt Romney probably would have had us at war with Russia and Iran (and God knows who else) months ago! Many talking heads on the right accuse Obama of weakness regarding Syria and Russia. I applaud it!

On October 15, 1969, in a speech at Columbia University, Mayor John Lindsay of New York City stated, “We cannot rest content with the charge from Washington that this peaceful protest is unpatriotic… The fact is that this dissent is the highest form of patriotism.”

The American (Stephen Cohen) Who Dared Make Putin’s Case, from Newsweek:

Cohen: My answer to the name-calling is two-fold. The reality is, among the people who attack me, I am the only American patriot. I’m a patriot of American national security. Before this began, Putin was the best potential partner we had anywhere in the world to pursue our national security. To quote a line I wrote many years ago, “American national security still runs through Moscow.”

Another thing. I don’t want Ukraine in NATO. Yes, that would be bad for Russia, and you probably think I’m being paid by the Russian government to say so. (Please check the number of views on this blog if you really think so.) But the number one reason I don’t want Ukraine in NATO is because it’s bad for America. Have you ever considered the possibilities of having an unstable (and frankly, these days, fascist-leaning) government in Kiev bound by treaty with the US? That means that if any of these utter lunatics like Arseniy Yatsenyuk, or even worse, Aleksandr Muzychko, or whoever ends up wielding power in Kiev, gets into trouble with another country like Russia, the US would be bound by treaty to intervene on their behalf! I welcome anyone reading this to enlighten me as to how this would be at all in the national interests of the United States.

7. The Euro-Maidan was sponsored by the US State Department, Western foundations, and big corporations like Chevron. The protesters were far from peaceful, not nearly as peaceful as the police, and yes, there was a strong fascist element to the Euro-Maidan uprising.

But since I’ve covered all of that ad nauseam in another blog post, here’s the link in case you don’t believe me:

Here’s a link with video and discussion of the protester violence against the police. Yes, it’s RT, so you probably won’t be convinced. Take a look anyway, just for the heck of it!

Mark Sleboda: What we are hearing from the US and from the EU is of course the most cynical hypocrisy. After the last few years of the brutal police repressions of the Occupy Wall Street movement in the US and the anti-neo-liberal austerity dictates that have been instituted around the EU, which brought literally tens of millions of protesters out onto the streets. They are calling against the violence in Ukraine where the majority of the injuries for the past few days have been from the police who suffered injuries from Molotov cocktails, firebombs, knife stabbings, clubbings with morning stars, wizard shots from trebuchets constructed in the Maidan and bows and the arrows. We are frequently seeing a level of medieval violence from the protesters. That’s where the real violence in these protests is coming from.

You could also do a video search on Google for: ukraine protests violence. There will be plenty of videos that you haven’t seen on the mainstream news, which aren’t from RT, and which clearly show the extremely violent nature of the protests. Viewer discretion is advised – you may see a lot of violent, fascist protesters, and it’s not pretty! If that’s not your cup of tea, then do a search for pro-Russia protests in Crimea and eastern Ukraine, where there’s a lot less violence and no fascism!

Americans should not go abroad to slay dragons they do not understand in the name of spreading democracy

“Whenever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will be America’s heart, her benedictions and her prayers. But she does not go abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the wellwisher to freedom and independence for all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She well knows that by once enlisting other banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extridition, in all wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy and ambition which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom….She might become the dictress of the world but would no longer be ruler of her own spirit… Americans should not go abroad to slay dragons they do not understand in the name of spreading democracy.”
– John Quincy Adams

Tell the White House and Congress: No support for neo-Nazis in Ukraine!;jsessionid=8C9303A9AA1EF3A74693EDDA0AB12F00.app250a?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=505

Petition: NO sanctions against the Russian Federation and ACCEPT the referendum in the Crimea for the annexation to the Russian Federation:

23 thoughts on “The Crimea referendum: why you probably shouldn’t care

    1. rolandrjs

      This is great! Thank you. Informative, with many links corroborating. And funny–which, in such a sad and miserable environment, comes as a relief. Thank you so much.

      1. bperet Post author

        Great points, Vlad. I can see you really know what you’re talking about. Care to elaborate on those insightful comments?

  1. Martin Oloughlin

    Love the blog. Great view points and references. Trying to figure out Russia’s positioning with the natural gas resources. Are they protecting what they already have or are they trying to grab new positions? Any insight or direction would be appreciated! Thanks.

    *I know Chevrons interest….Russia must have some as well right?

    1. bperet Post author

      I don’t think Russia is grabbing anything new. They are more or less on the defensive at the moment from what I can see. It’s Chevron that wants to start fracking in Poland and Ukraine to undermine Russia’s position. Russia would almost certainly favor a return to the status quo.

  2. Vlad Jersian

    The Maidan and the Auto-Maidan where grass roots movements brought on by the frustration of the populace in the brazen corruption by the president and his henchmen. The Euro-Maidan was a subsequent attachment by Europe to the movement.

    1. bperet Post author

      …and was sponsored by Chevron and the US State Department. Didn’t you hear Victoria Nuland admit that they had invested billions of dollars in overthrowing the government of Ukraine? Do your research before you comment like that, please.

  3. David Simon

    “It is estimated that nearly 70,000 Poles, mostly women and children along with unarmed men, were killed during the spring and summer campaign of 1943 in Volhynia by the OUN-Bandera which bears primary responsibility for the massacres.”

    Tell me again about Katyn please. Not justifying or denying anything but people in glass houses should not throw stones

    1. bperet Post author

      What would you like to know about Katyn? Could you tell me what it has to do with the current situation? Bandera is the hero of the Svoboda party, which is playing a large role in Ukrainian politics now. I don’t know of any Russians who celebrate the Katyn slaughter.

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