Photo Credit: Carolina Antunes/PR, Government of Brazil
Secretary of Russia’s Security Council Nikolay Patrushev, Oct. 18, 2019.

Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev told the weekly newspaper Argumenty i Fakty that Moscow isn’t at war with Kiev – instead, the confrontation on Russia’s western border is an attempt by the West to use Ukrainians as gun fodder in its standoff with Russia.

“All this story with Ukraine was engineered by Washington to rehearse the technologies of dividing a people that’s one and sow discord,” Patrushev told Argumenty i Fakty on Monday, adding: “Millions of people are forbidden to speak Russian, their native language from birth, they are forced to forget their origins. The West, for the sake of its ambitions, is practically destroying the Ukrainian people, forcing the active generation to die on the battlefield and reducing the rest of the population to poverty.”


Russia claims that the West broke the promise it made in the 1990s not to accept former Soviet satellite states such as Poland, Hungary, and Rumania as members of NATO, and by the time they were planning to take in Ukraine as well, Russia could not tolerate the threat on its border and was forced to invade Ukraine.

In late January 2022, just weeks before the Russian invasion, the Biden administration and NATO provided written responses to Moscow’s complaints, addressing its security demands. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced at the time: “We’ve addressed the possibility of reciprocal transparency measures regarding force posture in Ukraine, as well as measures to increase confidence regarding military exercises and maneuvers in Europe. We are acting with equal focus and force to bolster Ukraine’s defenses and prepare a swift united response to further Russian aggression.”

In other words, President Vladimir Putin’s worst nightmare about NATO’s presence on his country’s border was stated in emphatic terms by the US chief diplomat. Remember when the entire world was certain Putin wouldn’t dare invade Ukraine? Do we have a better understanding now, a year later, of what historians mean when they say Russia is the most paranoid empire in the world, bar none?

Patrushev continued: “We are not at war with Ukraine, because by definition we cannot have hatred for ordinary Ukrainians. Ukrainian traditions are close to the inhabitants of Russia, just as the heritage of the Russian people is inseparable from the culture of Ukrainians. Please note that in Crimea (which Russia occupied in 2014 – DI) the Ukrainian language is preserved as one of the state languages. Ukrainian cultural centers, and Ukrainian song and dance ensembles continue to operate in many cities. In the south of the Far East, given the large proportion of migrants from the time of Stolypin, a significant number of residents consider the native culture of the Ukrainian people.”

Now, that’s how you produce a good National Geographic special in Russian…

“And the sooner the citizens of Ukraine realize that the West is fighting against Russia using their hands, the more lives will be saved. Many have long realized this, but are afraid to say so, fearing reprisals. The West does not plan to save anyone’s life at the expense of its enrichment and other ambitions. At the same time, Americans, British, and other Europeans often create the illusion that they are protecting civilization from barbarism,” a bitter Patrushev argued.

He was asked: On February 24 last year, Russia said the goals of the invasion were the “demilitarization” and “denazification” of Ukraine. Are you still confident that these goals will be achieved?

“Neo-Nazi criminals who have been rampaging in Ukraine in recent years will inevitably be punished,” the Security Council Secretary promised. “However, it is possible that their operators will try to save the nastiest ones to be used in other countries.” He gave the example of German Nazis who were used by the Western allies in resurrecting the West German state after WW2. He noted that the CIA, formerly known as the US Strategic Services Directorate, “actively used former employees of the Abwehr and the Nazi Reich Imperial Security Directorate to create new German intelligence services.”

It’s mostly fairly common Russian anti-Western propaganda, but Patrushev is not off-base when he blames the US and NATO for intentionally ignoring Russia’s objections to flipping the former socialist republics during the first two decades after the fall of the Soviet Union.

As right-wing Israeli politicians are discovering these days, the US is not very good at listening.


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