Partial knowledge is the yeast of ignorance, and ignorance is the bread of war. Ukraine’s UN statement that “16,000 Russian soldiers have deployed to Crimea” caused a frenzy among Western media, who ignored the fact that those troops have been in Crimea since the late 1990s in accordance with a Kiev-Moscow treaty.
And Vladimir Putin’s “violation of international law” does not begin to compare with our nation’s imperial invasion of Iraq. So how can we explain the hysteria of the Western press, stoked by congressional militarists like John McCain, and the incendiary hyperbole of John Kerry? Now that our Mideast wars are drawing down, the U.S. arms industry needs to fuel the fires of American paranoia again, cultivating new enemies. After all, Congress is considering downsizing our military budget, which means fewer contracts for weapons makers.
The rhetoric describing Putin as “thug” and dangerous “madman” is reminiscent of the drumbeat portraying Osama bin Laden. Media such as CNN and FOX News are mouthpieces for the military-industrial complex, about which President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned us.
To avoid the next war, search out the facts, get both sides of the story. Otherwise, the tide of propaganda will sweep us away again.