This is perhaps the best I have yet read on this - apparently complete.

Congratulations !

Where can it now be further published ?

NYT ? (!)

The Nation ?

Prospect in the UK?


Stephen Fry - skype stephenfry sfrysfry@gmail.com

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It is time to say no to killing. No to war. No more. No more endless cycles of killing and revenge.

This is the powerful message of "Testament of Youth," brilliantly rendered here on film.


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Jun 6·edited Jun 6Liked by Matthew Hoh

An obviously well-researched primer on the origins of this conflict, Matthew. Robert Parry would be proud. Now if only facts mattered to our greedy, sleepwalking leadership.

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Jun 27Liked by Matthew Hoh

Thank you! This gives a lot of background and context I lacked, but it confirms what I've thought since the beginning. That being however wrong Russia was to invade, and they were, the US is not in a morally superior position from which to cast judgement. The war in Ukraine is a boy scout camp compared to the US invasion of Iraq.

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An excellent post. Thanks a lot, Matt. A actually became of it through a German translation so it has some international reach. All the global crises seem to have a simple cause: The rich and the powerful (the RIPs) want to retain or expand their power at any cost. Or in the words of Chris Hedges:

"A discredited ruling class, which has disemboweled the nation for its corporate masters and whose primary mission is the perpetuation of permanent war, has no intention of carrying out reform. It will not permit an exchange of ideas or allow its critics a platform. It knows it is hated. It fears the rise of the neofascists its dysfunction and corruption have spawned. It seeks to perpetuate itself only through fear —— fear of what will replace it."

I wrote about it here: https://www.wewillbearwitness.org/p/the-mendacity-of-the-elites

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"(it appears the Russians did the same, preparing their economy to protect it from the inevitable US sanctions," is this a violation of the Minsk II accords. Wht you have written suggests that it is.

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Thank you for putting the truth out there. The mainstream media will continue to ignore it, as per their owners' commands, but it will come out in time. There's no stopping it.

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Great piece, though I question the notion that anyone ever venerated Strobe Talbott.

Also, don’t forget US recognition of independent Kosovo in February 2008. Even Saakashvili complained to Rice that this provoke dangerous reaction from Moscow.

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Overall I think this is a powerful piece. But there are some glaring omissions: 1) In December 2021, Putin and the Russian government put forward comprehensive proposals for talks designed to establish a new, European-wide security infrastructure that would respect the national security rights of all nations. If the US and NATO were not hell-bent on boxing Russia into a corner to provoke war, that would have been the moment to use those as proposals as the start for meaningful negotiations. Instead, the US and NATO blew them off, simply ignored their existence. This is missing from your summary of what led to this proxy war, a war that has been designed and planned for by the US, NATO and Ukraine for a very long time, but certainly starting with the 2014 coup. 2) Jake Sullivan might be the most despicable and pathetic character among the cabal of neocons running the proxy war. After issuing warning after warning when he was ambassador to Russia about how Russia would react to NATO overtures for Ukrainian membership, he is now leading the charge. Two other despicable and pathetic characters would include Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande, who now both openly admit that the Minsk II negotiations were nothing more than a grand deception, a ruse to buy time to arm and train Ukraine for eventual war. This is diplomatic duplicity at its most egregious. 3) So, given this track record, could someone please answer the following question: What more could Putin and the Russian government have done to get the US and NATO to change course? It seems to me they tried everything possible in the way of diplomacy, but were rebuffed over and over again. By February 2022 they only had 2 choices left: a) do nothing (essentially surrender) and accept whatever the US and NATO wanted, regardless of the threat to Russian national security, or b) act. If the tables were turned, if all that has transpired in Ukraine were to take place in Mexico, for example, are you going to tell me that the US response would be, "Mexico is a sovereign country, and they are free to join a Russian/Chinese military alliance and base Russian and Chinese missiles in their country?" Give me a break!!!

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The idea that Putin had other options other than invade are erroneons. What evidence is there that he had any other choice when confronted with the existential threat of NATO taking Russia's most important naval base and putting nukes just a couple minutes' striking distance from Moscow? Had Putin not invaded, Russia's hawks would have gotten rid of him and put someone in power that would stand up to NATO and respond to the existential threat to Russia.

NATO wanted to wage a proxy war on Russia, using Ukraine as cannon fodder, in order to weaken Russia. They knew exactly what their provocative actions would lead to, and did it anyways. The responsibility for this travesty lies with NATO - primarily with the US which is in obviously in charge.

Those in the West who have supported this proxy war need to be jailed and made examples of, and those responsible for allying us with Nazis in Ukraine need to be charged with treason and made and example of.

Our sociopathic leaders have absolutely zero regard for our collective futures and seek only the aggrandizement and solidification of their own power. They are, in essence, tyrants just as evil as Hitler or Stalin and must be dealth with sternly and publicly.

We need to make it clear to the world we don't support Nazis and aren't part of this world-ending death cult, and we need to teach the next generation in our own countries that allying with Nazis is something that comes with the most serious of consequences.

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Thank you for this essay. You condemn Russia's invasion. What would you have them do?

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Thank you for the essay. You condemn Russia's invasion. What would you have them do?

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Thank you for this essay. You condemn Russia's invasion. What would you have them do?

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"Many in...Moscow have desired this war for decades" I read through this screed hoping to find some offer of evidence for that absolutely astounding claim. There was absolutely none. Was Hoh trying to cover his ass, or what?

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I supported your run for Senator from North Carolina, because I have admired your courageous actions over the years.

I don't understand your need to condemn the Russian Federation BEFORE you enumerate

the West's relentless provocations.

You declare, "An attempt at understanding the Russian perspective ... certainly does not imply the Russians had no other option but this war."

You and David Swanson and Medea Benjamin and many others insist on claiming that the Russian Federation had "other options."

Ray McGovern, Garland Nixon, Scott Ritter, Alexander Mercouris and others would strongly disagree.

David Swanson put out a list of THIRTY "other options." The number 30, in itself sounds like a smart-aleck insult, and the options he has concocted range from impractical, to fanciful, to somewhat silly.

In your own essay here, you claim that the Russian Federation had "other options," but you seem to feel no obligation to tell us even one of those options. I want to respect you, but your cavalier assertion, and your careless failure to back it up with any examples, undermines your integrity and contributes nothing to the campaign for a negotiated settlement.

How does the self-righteous condemnation of Russia give them any incentive to engage in dialogue?

And, let's be honest -- what you call "provocations" were really threats to the physical security of the Russian Federation -- real threats, that had to be met with the force of arms. You are not alone in fudging the true nature of US/NATO actions with this equivocal term, "provocations."

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Very well done Matthew!

How can we contact you to set up an interview?

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