, 08.24.2022 09:44 AM

My latest: fuck you, Putin

BOSTON – Down here, the Stars and Stripes are ubiquitous, but there’s nothing new there. It’s America, after all.

But there’s another kind of flag to be seen here, now. It’s everywhere – flying atop cars, homes, businesses. Everywhere you look down here, there is the beautiful – and simple and striking – Ukrainian national flag: a band of blue, as blue as the sky. The blue is atop a band of yellow, representing the fields of grain and flowers for which Ukraine is well-known.

The United States, more than any other nation on Earth, has rallied to support Ukrainians, as they valiantly resist the Satanic, fascistic forces of Vladimir Putin‘s corrupt regime. No nation has come close to doing what the United States has done.

According to the US State Department, it has been significant: “Deliveries to date include almost 12,000 anti-armor systems of all types; more than 1,550 anti-air missiles; radars; night vision devices; machine guns; rifles and ammunition; and body armor…

“Since January 2021, the United States has invested more than $10.6 billion in security assistance to demonstrate our enduring and steadfast commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. This includes more than $9.9 billion since Russia’s launched its premeditated, unprovoked, and brutal war against Ukraine on February 24.”

The State Department is quick to point out, however, that other nations and allies have contributed to the war effort, Canada included. But there can be no doubt that America has cast off the chaos and venality the characterized all of Donald Trump‘s foreign policy. Under Joe Biden – whatever his domestic policy failures – the US has stepped up.

So, too, the Ukrainian people. A war that everybody thought would be over in a single weekend has now reached the six-month mark. Ukrainians have fought with a ferocity and determination that has clearly caught Vladimir Putin by surprise. Putin, the great strategist, looks like a fool and a charlatan.

The magnitude of his error is everywhere to be seen, just like the Ukrainian flags found all over the United States this Summer. His objectives in waging war were threefold: to forestall the growth of NATO, to expand the withering Russian empire, and to show the world that he is the undisputed leader of a superpower.

On every front, he has failed. NATO is now expanding, not shrinking. Russia is now barely a country, let alone an empire: it is isolated, it is detested, and its people are greatly suffering because of Putin‘s miscalculation.

Most of all, Putin may be a leader, in the dictionary sense of the word – but he does not lead a superpower. Not now.

During the anarchic Trump era, the world order was faltering and splintering. Trump, a xenophobe and moron, did not care. Under Biden, however, the civilized world has come together as a one to defy Putin. The Russian leaders powers don’t look very super, anymore.

It is fair to observe that not every American supports Biden’s opposition to Putin. On Fox News, where extremists and conspiracy freaks dominate, the network’s meat puppets bray and screech about the insignificance of Ukraine, or advocate for a return to a Trumpian America that is insular and isolated.

But they, like Putin himself, are losing. While the war has been going on for half a year, far longer than either side wants, Vladimir Putin has still not won it. America and its allies support Ukraine in this war.

Now, the cliché is that the first casualty of war is truth. But one truth is unassailable: in this war, everyone knows who the good guys and the bad guys are. There is no fuzziness at the edges. Russia is bad, Ukraine is good. Period.

The British author Graham Greene once wrote that, in order to remain human, we sometimes must choose sides.

Humanity, and history, has chosen Ukraine. America and Canada and the civilized world are on the side of the Ukrainian people.

And down here – and pretty much everywhere else – it feels good to be on the right side, once again.


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    Ronald James O'Dowd says:


    Evil inevitably meets its end generally at a time not of its choosing so Putin is done as dinner. The only open question is when. And like the legion of POSs that preceded him on planet Earth, it won’t be pretty. Too bad that. Not.

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      Steve T says:

      I want to believe that is true. However, most other evil leaders either (a) existed before the nuclear era or (b) did not attempt to invade and take over entire countries.

      Both of things are no longer true with Putin. We now have someone who pretty blatantly wants to eradicate Ukraine. Since the end of WWII, most leaders who attempted this sort of thing were able to be pushed back by mightier armies. The evil leaders only had so many tools in their toolkit. Putin has nuclear weapons, so no one dares take all the steps that would be necessary to push him out of Ukraine.

      If Hitler had nuclear weapons, do you think Germany would have lost WWII in the way it did?

      I agree the end of the Ukraine conflict won’t be pretty – the problem is it may be ugly for the entire planet.

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        Ronald James O'Dowd says:


        I would put it to you that nuclear weapons are but a theoretical obstacle given that their first-strike use inevitably leads to MAD and Putin definitely doesn’t want that. In addition, the Virginia Class subs have the ability all by themselves to wipe Russia off the face of the Earth and two-thirds of them are at sea at all times.

        I would suggest as well that a hot war is almost inevitable what with Russian forces being seriously degraded just fighting Ukraine so expect a Russian attack on a NATO member as leverage, which will of course backfire and bring all of NATO into the fight. In short, it won’t be Moldova.

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    ted says:

    Right on Warren. Fuck you Putin.

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      william shakesfeare says:

      Putin is just like Trump. They both love the smell of sulfur in the morning.

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    the salamander says:


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    PJH says:

    I will state publicly that I was wrong about President Biden….though previously I thought perhaps he was too old or infirm to lead, this has not been the case….and while the US still has many problems(which country doesn’t?), it is encouraging to hear a President that doesn’t constantly fuel the flames of divisiveness like his predecessor did and continues to do….(not unlike a certain front runner asshole currently running to lead the Conservative Party of Canada….{{{shudder}}} )
    Id like to think Canada has done more than to, in the words of a famous Bostonian, “render all assistance short of help” in this conflict…but what we may have been lacking in war materiel, we have contributed monetarily, logistically and morally….and that’s a good feeling…. Enjoy the remainder of yer vacay, Mr. Kinsella…

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      Miles Lunn says:

      Biden is a classic example of bland works. He is a dull boring type like Bill Davis was and John Tory is. But in tough times, that is what US needs, not some divisive showman like Trump. And Trump interestingly enough is offside even within his own party as only the fringe lunatics in GOP are supporting Putin. Far more are like McCain and Romney who warned of how dangerous Putin was even when many of us didn’t want to hear it.

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    Lynn says:

    Oh yes, crush this old KGB shitstain.

    But I wonder, Warren, any thoughts on who in waiting in the wings to fill a power vacuum should “something happen” to Putin. Another nut and Russian nationalist or is there a reasonable option?

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    Mraz says:

    Do not … repeat not … count the chickadees before they hatcheth. Putin is not gone. Arms brokers to be sure are making money. Flags and whistles are merely flags and whistles. Ukrainians are dying every day and we’re doing nuthin’ about it. And whomever might replace VVP may make him seem like an angel with wings. This ain’t over, Warren. To go to Lewis: “This is is not the end. This is not the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.,”

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    Gilbert says:

    I heard that the war would be over in a few weeks, not a few days. In any case, it has lasted far longer than anyone expected. The Ukrainian people are determined to defend their country.

    It’s interesting that President Biden never visits Ukraine. A leader who has really supported Ukraine is Boris Johnson. He has also visited. Unlike the American president, he’s intelligent and can speak without a script.

    To be clear, Ukraine is a country and Ukrainian is a language. President Putin may not like it, but it’s reality. He clearly underestimated the will of the Ukrainian people to protect their country.

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      Ronald James O'Dowd says:


      Sometimes you just kill me. No offense intended. BOJO on his best day is a blithering idiot. Can’t get along with so many in his own caucus and the partying and reaction thereto was foreseeable to a person of average intelligence. So, they’re giving that dolt the heave-ho and it can’t happen soon enough for me.

      As for Biden, it’s that complete nonsense and utter bullshit about how an American president is indispensable. Poppycock. I would have thought that Truman proved that in spades when FDR dropped dead. It’s the American overinflated sense of themselves at work…

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        Gilbert says:

        Boris Johnson is intelligent, but he lacks wisdom.

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        Miles Lunn says:

        Boris may be clownish and lies like crazy and has a tendency to push falsehoods (anyone remember his infamous 350 million pound red bus). But on Ukraine he was one of the strongest. UK was first country to close airspace to Russian carriers and has taken strong action on sanctions. Its also gone after the oligarchs which Belgravia in London is full of so on Ukraine Boris Johnson has actually done a good job even if screwed up on other issues.

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    Sean says:

    This war won’t be decided by state of the art rockets. It will be decided by Russian mothers and widows…. As all wars are.

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      Ronald James O'Dowd says:


      You can certainly make that argument about Russia and WWI but I would say it definitely didn’t influence the prosecution of the war by Nazi Germany in WWII. Ditto for Tojo’s Japan.

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        The Doctor says:

        Exactly what I was going to say. I have heard some good Russia experts argue that once you get to a certain authoritarian tipping point, the whole concept of “the public” and especially “public opinion” becomes very problematic. For example, the fact that reliable polling and public opinion research becomes extremely difficult (arguably even impossible) to do in a country like Putin’s Russia for all sorts of reasons (and remember, there are inaccuracies in public opinion polling even in the most vibrant democracies).

        So what a bunch of aggrieved war mothers can actually accomplish under these conditions is questionable. For starters, some of them will be completely zombified by Putin’s disinformation machine (hell, some people in Canada show disturbing signs of this). Some of them will be understandably reluctant to voice any opposition to the war, given the laws that Putin has passed (including, of course, making it illegal to even call this war a war).

        A really excellent read about this topic in the Germany/WWII context is Ian Kershaw’s book The End. He does a brilliant job of explaining why there was so little effective opposition to Hitler, when it was evident to many Germans that he was leading them to disaster — especially after DDay. One of Kershaw’s points was that the Nazis had done such an effective job of destroying anything resembling civil society in Germany. And you need a functioning civil society of some sort in order to be able to mount any kind of meaningful opposition to flawed government policy.

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    Miles Lunn says:

    Totally agreed and even in Europe this summer saw a lot of Ukrainian flags too. Noticed British high commission in Ottawa is flying it (they have two flag poles as one formerly for EU flag when they were a member). Lithuanian embassy in London had three flags (Lithuanian, EU & Ukrainian). In France, foreign ministry replaced EU Flag with Ukrainian (no they are not anti-EU but French law requires French flag be flown on government buildings while allows EU Flag but doesn’t require it).

    Likewise in US its not just Democrats against Putin, most Republicans except your few lunatics like MGT, Lauren Boebert have too condemned Putin and support US efforts. And for the Russian oligarchs in Miami living high life, US government has made clear they are seizing their yachts, private jets, and other assets obtained from their support of criminal regime.

    Russia not a superpower, in fact their GDP was barely above Canada despite having 4x the population and will likely thanks to sanctions be below us when stats come out. Instead they are an international pariah who no one asides the most odious dictatorships (like Assad, Kim Jong Un etc) want anything to do with.

    And while not talked about a lot, something else is likely to happen too. Number of Russian soldiers killed is massive and yes unlike US, government can hide that from people, but you cannot hide it from Russian mothers and fathers. The mothers and fathers of Russia who haven’t heard from their sons probably fear worse and like any parent who has had to deal with pain of losing a child, they will eventually push back against Putin as nothing is worse for a parent than burying your own child and thanks to quagmire, there are thousands of Russian mothers and fathers having to live through this.

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