The Man Who Sold Ukraine

Volodymyr Zelensky is the current President of Ukraine. He was elected in a landslide victory in 2019 on the promise of easing tensions with Russia and resolving the crisis in the breakaway republics in east Ukraine. He has made no attempt to keep his word on either issue. Instead, he has greatly exacerbated Ukraine’s internal crisis while relentlessly provoking Russia. Zelensky has had numerous opportunities to smooth things over​ with Moscow and prevent the outbreak of hostilities. Instead, he has consistently made matters worse by blindly following Washington’s directives.

Zelensky has been lionized in the west and praised for his personal bravery. But—as a practical matter—he has failed to restore national unity or implement the crucial peace accord that is the only path to reconciliation. The Ukrainian president doesn’t like the so-called Minsk Protocol and has refused to meet its basic requirements. As a result, the ethnically-charged, fratricidal war that has engulfed Ukraine for the last 8 years, continues to this day with no end in sight. President Vladimir Putin referred to Zelensky’s obstinance in a recent speech delivered at the Kremlin. He said:

“At yesterday’s event… the Ukrainian leadership publicly declared that they were not going to abide by these agreements. Not going to abide by them. Well, what else can you say about that?” (Vladimir Putin)

Most Americans fail to realize that Zelensky’s rejection of Minsk was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Russian officials had worked for 8 years on Minsk hammering out terms that would be agreeable to all parties. Then—at the eleventh hour—Zelensky put the kibosh on the deal with a wave of the hand. Why? Who told Zelensky to scrap the agreement? Washington?


This is a very good piece, well-worth reading. My only criticism is the author, Mike Whitney, fails to go all the way, for understandable reasons (the people that cannot be named).

“Zelenskyy has been acting on orders from Washington from the get-go,” writes Whitney. No, the orders are not coming from Washington, though Washington may be transmitting or appear to be transmitting them. Don’t let this understandable and verbally small misdeed by Whitney lead you to skip his article. Just fill in Washington with your version of “the people that cannot be named.”

As an aside, I hope readers understand the importance of the concept KOBK because this concept makes it much easier to understand why people and nations behave as they often do. Putin rightly sees the KOBK strategy behind Zelensky’s actions. We as observers can see why Putin believed he must invade Ukraine and achieve at least the settlement Whitney describes. With an understanding of KOBK, all of us can also understand why “the people that cannot be named” are behaving as they are. ABN

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