Web Letters | The Nation

Thanks from Russia

Спасибо Доктор Коуэн за Вашу позицию!

Aleksandr Cheshev


May 12 2014 - 10:51am

How about we talk about Russia’s actions?

I am eager to read The Nation’s reporting on the Kremlin debate on the invasion of Ukraine by barely camouflaged Russian military; or on the ground-to-air missiles the “dissidents” in Eastern Ukraine used to shoot down two government helicopters over Slovyansk. Which military surplus outlet sold these items of modern warfare?

Perhaps, in your explanation of Russia’s and Putin’s resentments over their loss of empire, you will touch, ever so briefly, on the rights of Ukrainians to maintain their country free of Putin’s KGB 2.0 and the kleptocracy he hoped to maintain in Kiev. Did Ukrainians have a right to overthrow that thieving regime? Are their rights even relevant in your realpolitik calculus?

If Ms vanden Heuvel thinks that Russia is entitled to rule Ukrainians and subject them to Putin’s Soviet revival, she should display the candor to say so. If she thinks the United States and NATO should refrain from responding to Russian subjugation of the Ukrainians, she should state her belief and her reasoning.

Glenn Becker

Sausalito, CA

May 4 2014 - 9:24pm

Short-sighted policy

The Obama administration’s new policy with respect to Russia seems to me to be extremely short-sighted, potentially dangerous and based on assumptions that may well be false.

Specifically, a policy of isolation can only work if other nations support the United States’ position. If nations (e.g., Germany) believe that it is in their interest to maintain good relations with Russia, and that the United States is going “too far” because it believes it is has the right to do whatever it think is necessary, then the policy could wind up creating fractures in NATO.

Moreover, the US seems to believe that Russia has no significant options—this shows a lack of imagination and recklessness when dealing with a nuclear state.

Bob Resnikoff

Croton-on-Hudson, NY

May 2 2014 - 10:14am

Apologetics for Russian imperialism

This is one of the worst articles I have ever seen The Nation run. I am not a Russophobe or a neocon. But these apologetics for Russian imperialism are as disgusting and repellent as apologetics for US imperialism, or indeed for any other imperialism on this planet.

Ukraine had a peaceful and democratic uprising in February to throw out a corrupt and mass-murdering kleptocrat, Yanukovych, who stole billions from the people of Ukraine and ordered his thugs to shoot hundreds of unarmed protesters. In response, Putin’s regime—a cabal of siloviki thugs and energy-rent plutocrats, who steal tens of billions from the people of Russia every year—responded with a military invasion of the Crimean district of Ukraine with 20,000 troops, despite there being no threat to ethnic Russians or to Russia itself. Putinism’s undemocratic, state-controlled media continues to broadcast the most despicable and atrocious lies and threats against the people of Ukraine. Putin’s regime is also inciting armed, violent thugs who are killing and murdering Ukrainian citizens. Putin’s regime has also criminalized Russia’s Internet, making domestic dissent impossible.

Russia has 70,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders and has openly threatened military intervention. This is a colossally dangerous situation, because one small spark could start a horrendous regional war that would kill millions of people and benefit absolutely nobody.

I am sorry, but Cohen’s whitewashing of Russian imperialism is unacceptable for any publication that claims to be critical of Wall Street neoliberalism, of US empire and of all the other, lesser (but no less thuggish) empires on our very small and endangered planet.

Dennis Redmond


May 1 2014 - 10:29am