Ukrainian Rock Star Gets U.S. Award, Calls for Putin’s Overthrow; Leaked Tape Claims West-Backed Leaders Killed Demonstrators
White House, other Western and Russian leaders restrained their rhetoric regarding the Ukrainian crisis even as other players on all sides ramped up claims of murder, conspiracy, torture and other unethical conduct rarely leveled so bluntly regarding large governments.
To be sure, the official rhetoric was tough — but not in comparison with the claims by non-government players alleging state-sponsored, murderous, false flag operations — or else schemes to falsify such evidence.
Ukrainian rock star Ruslana, for example, told a National Press Club audience March 5 that Russians and their leader are undertaking vast propaganda efforts, torture and killing to maintain influence in the Ukraine following street protests that toppled a pro-Russian leader late last month.
But Ruslana, shown in my photo and fresh from receiving White House honors this week for years of advocacy against Russia, did not directly answer my question about whether she thought controversial leaked tapes were genuine in their implications.
One implication was that the Western-backed snipers intentionally killed fellow protesters, and another was that Western leaders were involved in the selection of the Ukraine’s new leaders. The phone call the first week of February is now being virtually ignored, U.S. diplomat apologizes for profane remarks on E.U. in leaked phone call.
In a response of at least eight minutes, Ruslana instead argued that Russian President Vladimir Putin is capable of boundless evil and should be thwarted in the Ukraine — and overthrown in Russia by its people.
Meanwhile, Putin, President Obama (shown calling Putin), Ukranian, NATO, United Nations and other leaders exchanged threats to opponents and promises of massive aid to allies.
But no major new violence or troop movements were reported. The leading players, including Russian and the Ukraine, have many inter-dependent ties, and thus risk hurting themselves if actions are not sufficiently planned or explained to various national and global constituencies.
Among major developments, Russia tightened its hold on the Crimean Peninsula, and European nations promised $15 billion in aid to the Ukraine.
Additionally, Republican former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Democratic former National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote op-eds in the Washington Post providing their views, excepted below.
The columns, How the Ukraine crisis ends and What is to be done? Putin’s aggression in Ukraine needs a response are by two of the longest-term foreign policy advisors of the powerful. My new book, Presidential Puppetry, points to the important role of these two foreign policy gurus in particular.
Also, two United States-reared anchors on the Russian-government funded television station RT made news by on-air criticism of the Russian government and RT.