(by John Blumentstiel)
The US “left” and the country, in general, disagrees on both the causes and the potential solutions for ending the war in Ukraine.
This, accompanied by the lack of open public debate concerning the potential of nuclear war with Russia and China, should be a cause of great concern to all.
Our current political leadership has failed in governing on behalf of the well-being of the people. The only means we have to constrain the malfeasance of our government is an aware and aroused populace. The only means of achieving that is to foster an environment of open public debate on issues relevant to the well-being of the people. This is tragically absent regarding the war in Ukraine.
To address this problem, we need a disciplined, public debate based on facts relevant to this war. This will encourage all sides of the issue to address it from verifiable evidence as opposed to historically embedded attitudes.
I propose this simple outline be considered to structure a more disciplined, objective debate:
- Question to evaluate: "What are the causative factors that brought about the War in Ukraine?"
- From initial observation and research, what hypotheses can be developed?
Two primary possibilities:
a. The Ukraine war grew out of a Russian national desire, driven by their president, Vladimir Putin, to reclaim the power and prestige of the former Soviet Union and the consequent war was launched, unprovoked, for this purpose. OR
b. The Ukraine war grew out of a decades-long provocation driven by the US and supported by European allies due to its steady encroachment of NATO military forces up to the Russian border and thus creating an existential crisis for the Russian Federation.
These two hypotheses seem to capture the fundamental views of the situation. Can either one, after being carefully evaluated be utilized as predictive of future actions/outcomes, thus demonstrating its validity?
3) Data gathering: Adherents of each hypothesis undertake a careful evaluation to determine which can be supported by verifiable facts and be accurate in predicting future occurrences, or in hindsight, has been previously demonstrated with the current one being merely a replication.
4 & 5) Analyze, compare, and draw conclusions.
Here is a link to a previously utilized events timeline provided under a previous post. It is now presented again as it serves well the data-gathering process in support of hypothesis 2b. To flesh out this discussion, anyone who would like to provide data in support of either hypothesis or an additional one is encouraged to add it in the comments section below.
The goal is to open up the debate, not just among the progressive movement, but in the population in general. There is no democracy without dialogue. And there is no dialogue if the citizenry shuts down and refuses to engage civilly with one another on matters of critical public policy.
The progressive movement should not err by allowing itself to be divided on this war. We must find common ground based on a common truth to direct our opposition to this war as well as the one waiting around the corner in Taiwan.
ALSO: Here is a recent piece on the Ukrainian Timeline by Joe Lauria for Consortium News.