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See also: Demography Is Destiny—In Crimea And In The U.S.

If it were possible to choose ethnic affiliation before being born, I think it would be wise to avoid being born into a small nation located right up against a big, proud empire: Tibet or Turkestan, Armenia in Ottoman days or Serbia when Austria was great. Nationalities like that are liable to have histories much unhappier than the average.

That’s the context in which I think of Ukraine,

For many years, I have had friends among the White Russians here in and around New York; White, I mean, as opposed to Red.

These were descendants of Russians who’d fled from the Bolshevik revolution of 1917. There’s a big settlement of them in Sea Cliff, ten miles from us here on Long Island’s North Shore. We used to attend the Petroushka Ball, a big annual event for White Russians in New York City. You would have been able to attend this year’s Petroushka on February 11th, but they’re in process of re-scheduling it due to Covid.

Among these children and grandchildren of Tsarist Russia, there was a vein of sentiment—by no means universal, but common enough to notice—that Ukraine was really just part of the Motherland, of Russia.

People of this kidney laughed at the idea of Ukraine as an independent nation. Sure, these people would say, there are separatists in the West of Ukraine, and it was certainly terrible what Stalin did to Ukraine in the 1930s; but they’re Russian just like us.

“We used to call the place ‘Little Russia,’” they’d tell me, which is true. The Ukrainian language? Eh, just a dialect of Russian. Whether that’s true…ask a linguist.

There is a rough parallel between Ukraine’s relation to Russia and Ireland’s to Britain. Ukraine is a sort of Ireland.

Religion is something of a factor, too, although I don’t know enough to say how much of one. In Ireland it was Catholics versus Protestants, in Ukraine Catholic versus Orthodox.

As someone said: History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes.

All right, the parallel is a rough one, and I’ve probably ticked off Ukrainian listeners. I’m only passing on what I heard across dinner tables at the Petroushka Ball. My friendships with White Russians have lapsed, and I don’t have a dog in this fight.

Neither does the U.S, for all I can see. Ukraine’s status is a European issue. The European Union has three times the population of Russia and ten times the nominal GDP. They even have nukes; at any rate the French do.

If the Europeans can’t organize a common defense against Russian aggression, that sure is a shame. But I don’t see why the U.S. has to ride to the rescue.

There is simply no reason for us to be in NATO. Donald Trump said so when he was campaigning in 2016, and he was right. He didn’t follow through of course, he just let himself be buffaloed by the generals and the bureaucrats in the departments of State and Defense; but he was right none the less.

If American voters have the great good sense to elect a capable, effective National Conservative president in 2024, getting us the hell out of NATO should be near the top of his to-do list.

That’s assuming NATO still exists in 2024. Given the current clearing of throats and shuffling of feet among European governments about what, if anything, should be done about Ukraine the continued existence of NATO with or without us is by no means certain[Will America have to go it alone? Biden is worried NATO won’t let him deploy troops to protect Ukraine because member countries fear Putin will punish them, Daily Mail, January 28, 2022].

Here’s another Ukraine-Ireland parallel. After they got independence a hundred years ago this coming December, the Irish didn’t do much with it. I mean they didn’t put forth any great efforts to make themselves a prosperous modern nation.

Through most of the twentieth century, up to the rise of the Celtic Tiger around 1990, independent Ireland vegetated in poverty, introversion, and backwardness. The lifestyle ideal, according to one historian of the country, was, quote, “to sit around a peat fire discussing the Council of Trent in Gaelic.”

A lot of Irish people found that unsatisfactory, so that Ireland’s principal export was…people.

Ukraine the same, though with qualifications. Since independence in 1991 Ukraine has not, either politically or economically, been a model any country would want to emulate.

To be fair, it’s true that much of the trouble has been Russia stirring the pot, plus the usual cack-handed attempts by our own State Department missionaries to manipulate things the other way. Ireland was stagnant and corrupt from the twenties to the eighties, but nobody’s claimed it was Britain’s fault…well, nobody outside Ireland.

Still the results in Ukraine have been dire. Exporting people? Oh yeah:

Ukrainians vote with their feet. Nine million have work abroad, according to the National Security and Defense Council of the Ukraine, and 3.2 million have full-time jobs in other countries. There are only 21 million Ukrainians between the ages of 20 and 55, which suggests that more than two-fifths of prime working-age Ukrainians earn their living elsewhere.

I took that from an article by David Goldman at Asia Times, January 26th: Ukraine is the hollow man of Europe: Why fight over a country whose birthrate is 1.23 children per female and with one of the world’s highest out-migration rates?

Goldman’s article is a great heaping dish of negativity, all supported by published statistics. Yes, fertility really has collapsed. By the end of this century Ukraine’s population will have fallen by half, according to the U.N. Population Program. Say what you like about the twentieth-century Irish, but they kept reproducing.

And the Ukrainians most likely to emigrate are the best-educated. Remittances from overseas workers already comprise eleven percent of Ukraine’s GDP.

ORDER IT NOW

The Ukraine National Academy of Science’s Institute for Demography reckons that the true population is only 35 million, not the 48 million given in the official census. The Institute also predicts that three out of 10 Ukrainian men now aged 20 will die before the age of 60 due to alcoholism and auto accidents.

Please don’t think I’m grinning and chuckling here at the misfortunes of Ukrainians. I’m an ethnonationalist. In my ideal world every distinct people with a fair historical claim to some one territory would be ruling itself in that territory as a nation, trading freely and fairly with other nations. Ukraine, Ireland, Tibet, Biafra, … hey.

We are a long way from that ideal, though, and there are some knotty unresolved problems. What happens when two distinct people claim the same territory? Are the inhabitants of Taiwan a “distinct people”? The Catalans? Palestinian Arabs? Turkish Cypriots?

There’s a lot of history yet to be worked through before the reign of universal peace and justice arrives.

Until then we have to manage our own affairs as best we can, and meddle in other people’s only when we are quite sure we know what we are doing, and why.

Which is to say, on the evidence of the past thirty years of U.S. foreign policy, hardly ever.

John Derbyshire [email him] writes an incredible amount on all sorts of subjects for all kinds of outlets. (This no longer includes National Review, whose editors had some kind of tantrum and fired him.) He is the author of We Are Doomed: Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism and several other books. He has had two books published by VDARE.com com: FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT (also available in Kindle) and FROM THE DISSIDENT RIGHT II: ESSAYS 2013.

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: Culture/Society, Foreign Policy • Tags: Russia, Ukraine 
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  1. Anonymous[415] • Disclaimer says:

    That Miss Ukraine 2021 looks vaguely Latin American.

    Ukrainian high jumpers, on the other hand, look very Ukrainian.

    • Replies: @schnelladine
  2. There is simply no reason for us to be in NATO.

    Putin simply asked the US to halt NATO expansionism, a demand that was branded “outrageous non-starter” by US politicians and media. A US exit from NATO would effectively terminate the organization, exceeding all Russian expectations.

    • Agree: 36 ulster, Max Maxwell
  3. Even when he’s leaning towards the truth about Exceptional! foreign policy, Mr. Derbyshire has to flash some fealty to his adopted Uncle Sam:

    If the Europeans can’t organize a common defense against Russian aggression, that sure is a shame. But I don’t see why the U.S. has to ride to the rescue.

    This is Buchananesque framing of the Establishment narrative from the Right.

    “Defense”? Someone needs to wind his calendar. The readily apparent purpose of NATO is to facilitate Washington’s control (“F*ck the EU!”) of Europe, which is why it’s been expanding since 1991. The British math whiz likely knows this, as truly dissident authors here (Anglin, Dinh, Giraldi, Roberts, etc.) have been demonstrating for months. But Mr. Derbyshire’s edginess reliably ends at high-toned racebait — he’s one of the Unz Review’s copium denmothers for disaffected whites.

    Who fell hook, line, and sinker back in 2002 for the war on Afghanistan, and then last year tried to pretend that “we” all have blood on our hands because both Team Red and Team Blue politicians condoned and voted for it? And he’ll fold like a cheap, camouflage suit to help monger the next war when the time comes, too.

  4. dearieme says:

    After they got independence a hundred years ago this coming December, the Irish didn’t do much with it.

    Come now, they organised a destructive civil war with one set of Roman Catholics murdering a different set.

    • Replies: @JMcG
  5. A people next to a big imperial power. That’s how we feel about Dixie.

    • LOL: 36 ulster
  6. Dr. X says:

    Until then we have to manage our own affairs as best we can, and meddle in other people’s only when we are quite sure we know what we are doing, and why.

    We know exactly what we’re doing and why: we’re delivering on the bribes that were given to Biden through his drug-addict, whoremongering son by Ukrainian oil and gas interests.

    Duh!

  7. “Meddle in other people’s affairs only when we know what we are doing and why”? HELL NO, you out-of-touch New York POS Derbyshire. Learn the damn lesson already: do NOT meddle in other countries’ affairs, period.

  8. Love the article – and the comparisons to the Irish. Ukraine, first of all means border land, hence the word krai : border. One has to go back into Polish as well as Russian history to understand Ukraine. In the 1400s there was the joining of Poland and Lithuania as a result of a dynastic marriage. This kingdom had elected rulers (elected by a body of nobles) – who elected mostly foreigners, because the Poles/Lithuanians did not trust their own nobles to rule. So, you definitely had a mixed bag of good and bad rulers over the next few centuries. One could down a thousand rabbit holes from here, but since we are discussing Ukraine (largely under Poland) I want to stay on point. Who were the Poles fighting at the time? Largely the Swedes and whatever Turkic peoples -Tartars? inhabited/ruled the area along the Black Sea. Russia itself was establishing itself as a unified entity under the Romanovs based in Moscow and was recovering from the horrors of Mongol rule. In the 1640s, due to many factors, a bunch of Cossacks under the leadership of Bohdan Hmelnitsky managed to gain a sort of independence from Poland. Ukrainians like to see this as their independence movement. Cossacks were not comparable to Washington and Jefferson, nor to the leader of Easter Rising in Ireland. Think of the Wild West and the Cossacks as independent contractor soldiers whose loyalty was to themselves and to the Orthodox faith (not to a king or tsar or to ethnicity) Hmelnitsky managed to keep his thing going for a few decades -then back to Polish rule. From this point, more Polish territory was lost to the Romanovs. The idea of Ukrainian nationalism did not arise till sometime in the 1800s -mostly as a literary/cultural movement. The freest expression of this was in the Hapsburg province of Galicia (Halychyna) where most of the Ukrainians resided (around Lvov/Lviv). It was really WW I that gave birth to any solidified notion of Ukrainian national consciousness. The same can be said of Slovaks in a way. I believe a lot of this was also fostered by the Greek Catholic (Uniate) church in Galicia. After WW I, empires crumble, crowns toppled and the Communists take over Russia. There was very short lived independent Ukraine (maybe) according to some in the middle of this mess. Poles are awarded Galicia, Holodomor in the 1930s, WW II. Things are not too festive for Ukrainians (or for most people for that matter). What I want to point out is that the narrative of Ukrainian nationalism is a rather wobbly one based on a literary movement in the 1800s and a series of wrongs done in the relatively recent past -not on a long and glorious history of a separate people with a separate culture. Let me end this here.

    • Replies: @Quartermaster
    , @Art Deco
  9. Farenheit says:

    Answer this question, which number is bigger?

    All American soldiers who have died in every war since the beginning of the republic, or Russians who died on Ukrainina soil in 1943/44?

    They didn’t pay that price to “gift” Ukraine to the globohomo.

    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
  10. elect a capable, effective National Conservative president in 2024

    Supposed there is such an animal, how do you imagine s/he would attain the position to be elected? Honestly curios.

    • Replies: @Dutch Boy
  11. The catchprase of John Cleese ( as Basil Fawlty ) was ” Don’t mention the War!” Derbyshire’s should be: ” Don’t mention the Jews!” He never fails in that regard, unlike Fawlty.
    So no mention of Jewish oligarchs in Ukraine, where their activities have been just as corrosive as they were in Russia before Putin stopped them.

    Then we have this absurd statement.

    To be fair, it’s true that much of the trouble has been Russia stirring the pot, plus the usual cack-handed attempts by our own State Department missionaries to manipulate things the other way

    NO: Russia has not been stirring the pot. It was the American Ziocons who deposed the legitimate, internationally recognised Yanukovych Government and replaced it with one subservient to them. Think Maidan, think Nuland.

    No: ” State Department missionaries ” are not cack-handedly trying to manipulate things the other way. Subverting Governments that stand in their way, by any means possible, is their purpose in life.
    Notice how Derbyshire calls them “missionaries”, as if their zeal derives from some perverted version of Christian piety. Nothing could be further from the truth. Blinken and his 4 underlings at the State Department are Zionist Jews, one and all.

    Finally no mention of the incumbent “President ” of the Ukraine, Zelensky, a diminutive Jewish former comedian. It is no surprise that tensions with Russia have been ramped up since he came to power. The previous one, Poroshenko, was an ethnic Ukrainian and an oligarch. There were limits on how far he would bend. By contrast, Zelensky is a Ziocon puppet.

    • Troll: 36 ulster
    • Replies: @Tsigantes
  12. The only good thing about a Biden mess in Ukraine is that it would empower the next president to get out of NATO.

    • Agree: Max Maxwell
  13. Anon[141] • Disclaimer says:

    The White Russian community in and around NYC is a remarkable group of people. Thanks for mentioning them. Erie PA also has a strong White Russian community.

    Memory Eternal

  14. JMcG says:
    @dearieme

    First time I’ve ever seen the Irish Civil War described as organized.

    • LOL: Verymuchalive
    • Replies: @36 ulster
  15. @Farenheit

    They didn’t pay that price to “gift” Ukraine to the globohomo.

    You show your ignorance. Ukraine does not recognise “homosexual marriage”, just like Russia.Here’s the evidence if you can stomache it.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Same-sex_marriage

    Likewise, it abstained on condemning China for its treatment of its Uyghurs, much to the annoyance of America and most of the Collective West. In fact, in social attitudes, the Ukraine is much like Russia . It is a fanatically irredentist state ( compare Italy and Bulgaria in the 20th Century ) which seeks support wherever it can get it, including Western Globohomos. However, that does not mean capitulating to these people on social and religious issues. Put it another way, it didn’t get Holodomized to be sodomized.

  16. @Brooklyn Dave

    Let me end this here.

    Good thing. That way you don’t demonstrate your historical cluelessness about Ukraine any further.

    Ukraine has had national aspirations for centuries. That goes back to Kyivan Rus.

    • Agree: James N. Kennett
    • LOL: Verymuchalive
    • Replies: @Brooklyn Dave
  17. Dutch Boy says:

    Yep, Ireland is sure becoming a modern state in the British mold: finance capitalism and Third World immigration, homosexual activism, divorce, abortion, etc.. It’s practically paradise now.

    • Agree: Rich
  18. Dutch Boy says:
    @Fluesterwitz

    Prestidigitation, how else?

    • LOL: Fluesterwitz
  19. The silence of science

    • Thanks: Robjil
  20. @Anonymous

    Oh I guarantee that 2021 Miss Ukraine won the title *precisely* because she wasn’t fair skinned and blond. Apparently Ukraine is getting cucked too.

    Did you ever see what won the Miss Helsinki contest in Finland a few years ago? If not, take a gander:
    https://www.nairaland.com/3566856/sephora-iklaba-winner-miss-helsinki

    • Replies: @Seneca44
  21. @Dutch Boy

    Yep, Ireland is sure becoming a modern state in the British mold: finance capitalism and Third World immigration, homosexual activism, divorce, abortion, etc.. It’s practically paradise now.

    The surprising thing is that they cannot blame any of this on the British.

    Ireland had a fastidious nationalist independence for 70 years, and then chose to make the same mistakes as their larger neighbour – including Muslim immigration – even though the downside was already apparent in Britain and the rest of Europe.

    • Replies: @JMcG
  22. GeneralRipper [AKA "GoldenValley"] says:

    Yeah Johnny, it was the “potato blight” which caused the famine in Ireland, not the policies of Great Britain.

    Which is why shiploads of corn and grain were leaving Irish ports while the Irish starved.

    • Replies: @Wokechoke
  23. 36 ulster says:
    @JMcG

    A relatively brief (1921-22) but nasty period in Irish history that saw the defeat of the Irish Robespierres–and which goes largely unacknowledged in Dublin. Much like–until recently–the service and sacrifice of over two hundred thousand patriotic Irish Catholic volunteers during the Great War. And the contributions of over a hundred thousand Irish men and women in uniform and in the British defense industry during WWII. Obviously,they don’t fit the Republican Narrative.

    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
    , @JMcG
  24. Wokechoke says:
    @GeneralRipper

    That was the Free Market, commie.

  25. @Quartermaster

    How could they have national aspirations in the days of Kyivan Rus when they were the only game in town back around 1000 AD? There was no unified Russian state to be against, Poland was just getting off the ground as a nation. It was just local princes. The most powerful ruler was in Kyiv (Kiev) uder the Rurik dynasty – and the other powerful prince was in Novgorod.

  26. @36 ulster

    Much like–until recently–the service and sacrifice of over two hundred thousand patriotic Irish Catholic volunteers during the Great War.

    A total of 206,000 Irishmen served in the British forces during the war.[17] Of these,
    58,000 were already enlisted in the British Regular Army or Navy before the war broke out

    As there was no conscription in Ireland throughout the War, there were less than 150,000 volunteers.
    The proportion of eligible men who volunteered was much less than that in Britain, and Protestants volunteered in higher proportions than Catholics. A large minority of volunteers would have been Protestants, so the number of Catholic volunteers would be about 80,000 or so.

  27. Unit472 says:

    One might be forgiven if you believed Leonid Brezhnev was the founder of Russia. His doctrine of once a part of the Russian empire always a part of the Russian empire seems to be its guiding principle today. How else explain Russia continuing to hold 4 Japanese islands seized in the waning days of WW2 after the US had sunk the Japanese navy or claiming a non contiguous piece of territory carved out of East Prussia seized from Germany ( but not incorporated into the GDR after WW2 )?

    If the US could return Iwo Jima to Japan, despite having more of its soldiers die seizing it in 1945 than actual Japanese civilians who had ever called it home why does Russia persist in holding the Kuril Islands? The US would have been happy to see Russia take them in 1942 when that would have been militarily useful for the allied war effort.

    Same goes for the so called Kalingrad Oblast. If the Red Army had moved into East Prussia to carve out this chunk of territory prior to June 1941 all sorts of military unpleasantness might have been avoided but Russia didn’t. Kalingrad, like the Kuril Islands , seems to have been a bit of an afterthought after WW2 concluded.

    • Replies: @Verymuchalive
  28. @Unit472

    I am sure that the Kaliningrad Oblast would have been returned to Germany by now if relations after the Cold War had been cordial. Everyone who has visited the place remarks how impermanent everything looks – as if most of the population are prepared to leave at short notice. However, Germany has followed the American Neocon policy and this has been completely counterproductive. It has completely wrecked any chances of them getting Konigsburg ( Kaliningrad ) back.

    The native inhabitants of the Kuril islands, as of Sakhalin, are the Ainu people, not the Japanese.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ainu_people

    After the 1905 Russo-Japanese War, Japan obtained Southern Sakhalin . The existing populations were Ainu and Russian settlers . The Japanese expelled these people to Russia and replaced them with Japanese settlers. Prior to that, in 1875 ( Treaty of St Petersburg ) obtained the Kuril Islands, but disputes still smouldered. They forced the Ainu to assimmilate and sent in large numbers of Japanese settlers.
    In 1945, the Soviet Union occupied both areas. The Japanese settlers were expelled from Sakhalin. In 1946, 17,000 Japanese civilians were expelled from the Kurils. However, the small numbers of Ainu left were permitted to remain. There are now 20,000 people, mainly Russian settlers, on the islands. Japan continues to claim Kunashir and some small islands nearby.

    Why do the Russians remain ?

    1) Apart from short, recent periods these islands have never been Japanese territory.

    2) Throughout the 19th and early 20th enturies, treaties notwithstanding, most Russians saw them as Russian territory. They still do.

    3) What possibly could Japan give in return? Nothing !
    Even if the Japanese Government gave assurances that Kunashir would be a neutralised zone, within 10 years – less even- it would have a large US military base. Do neocons break every agreement they make ? Do bears s**t in the woods ? You don’t need to be a Russian to answer.

  29. @Dutch Boy

    This is actually a good point. I can fairly be charged with contradiction here: scoffing at the pre-Tiger priest-ridden potato republic, after previously having lamented https://www.johnderbyshire.com/Opinions/Diaries/2020-05.html#03 the recent transformation of Ireland into the Heart of Wokeness.

    My defense would be that the underlying premise is false: That you can be a stable, secure, decently prosperous modern nation without yielding to wokeness. Hungary seems to illustrate that.

    I wish the U.S.A. were such a nation …

    • Replies: @Dutch Boy
  30. KenH says:

    Major resentment over a great famine? Check: Ireland’s potato blight, Ukraine’s Holodomor.

    But this isn’t an apples to apples comparison or rather, potatoes to potatoes. The Holodomor was engineered and Jewish commissars like Lazar Kaganovitch played pivotal roles in the engineered famine while the potato famine of Ireland was cause by a disease. It wasn’t engineered by the English.

    The Holodomor led to approximately seven million deaths which is one million more than the alleged holocaust of European Jewry while the potato famine in Ireland claimed roughly one million lives.

    • Replies: @Patrick McNally
  31. Seneca44 says:
    @schnelladine

    Irrespective of skin color, she is not a particularly attractive woman.

  32. @KenH

    Those are old Cold War myths. The number “7 million” was specifically invented to top the fabled “6 million” which was repeated everywhere. More rational estimates give 2.6 million Ukrainians dying from the famine: Jacques Vallin, France Mesle, Serguei Adamets, Serhii Pyrozhkov, “A New Estimate of Ukrainian Population Losses,” Population Studies, Volume 56, Number 3.

    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/ans/10.1080/00324720215934

    Outside of Ukrainia, an additional 1.2 million in the Volga and some other hundreds of thousands scattered across the USSR would have died as well for somewhere around 4 million.

    More than that, the crop failure was indisputably the result of natural disaster and was in no way contrived. Mark Tauger has done the most thorough research on the topic, but his review of Anne Applebaum provides a useful introduction to the topic:

    http://www.historynewsnetwork.org/article/169438

    • Replies: @KenH
  33. JMcG says:
    @James N. Kennett

    Ireland signed the treaty to join the EU in January, 1972. It was put to a referendum and passed with over 80% in favor the following year.

  34. JMcG says:
    @36 ulster

    The journalist Kevin Myers almost single-handedly led the battle for a proper acknowledgement of the sacrifices made by Irish Catholics in the British Army in the Great War. My father’s uncle was killed on the First of July, 1916 in front of Beaumont-Hamel, while serving with the Royal Inniskillings.
    The present Irish government, no matter the party, isn’t fit to show itself among honorable men. That, unfortunately, is true of every government with which I’m familiar. We are led by the worst among us, the very worst.

  35. KenH says:
    @Patrick McNally

    Those are old Cold War myths. The number “7 million” was specifically invented to top the fabled “6 million” which was repeated everywhere.

    There is no information in your first link. But by the same partisan left historians have been trying to chip away at the Holodomor death count and frame it as largely accidental coupled with government incompetence to protect the image of communism and equally to guard the myth that the alleged holocaust of European Jewry is the preeminent atrocity in world history.

    Robert Conquest’s Harvest of Sorrow and Miron Dolot’s Execution by Hunger are definitive accounts of the Ukrainian famine. Even Jewess Anne Applebaum claims in her book that the Soviet State deliberately murdered the kulaks and others. But curiously she puts the death toll at 5 million or just below the alleged number of victims in the alleged holocaust of European Jews.

  36. Athena says:

    NATO is led by the US and the UK. They back the independence of Kosova and Ukraine, while they have always violently opposed Ireland’s independence. The UK uses the Shannon airport to ”transfer’ Iraqi prisoners tortured by British soldiers, the Brits killed 13 innocent Irish protesters ( remember Bloody Sunday?) using the Shannon airport in Ireland, the Brits harass and track Irish groups on Facebook when they denounce British soldiers who committed war crimes in Iraq, the Brits welcome Hillary Clinton the war criminal when she’s doing her speeches in Northern Ireland, the Brits destroyed Gaddhaffi’s Libya and hated him because he supported the Irish cause. The Brits and Sarkozy forced Ireland to vote Yes to the Lisbon treaty to make sure they would stay military tied to NATO. And so on. They are MONSTERS.

    Why is the UK backing the indendence of Ukraine while they’ve violently opposed Ireland’s independence and killed or starved to dead thousands of Irish for more than 800 years?

    WAKE UP. There is no parallel between US-UK NATO supporting the independence of a territory just to install a military base on it, and the independence of a nation. Kosovo is not independent, and Ukraine will just be used as a football field to shoot on Russia.

    Ukrainians do not seem to be aware of the endless cruelty of the Anglo-Saxons. They will never really support the independence of a territory.

    • Replies: @nokangaroos
  37. “Russia stirring the pot.”

    Dear Russophobe,
    stirring with a spoon or a stick?

  38. @Athena

    The difference in the Ukraine is the Jews are hellbent on setting up shop
    there (again), which adds a bit more pressure than if it were only about
    another rocket pad (for which Turkey serves nicely).
    Of course I wouldn´t call that “independence” either.

  39. Art Deco says:

    After they got independence a hundred years ago this coming December, the Irish didn’t do much with it. I mean they didn’t put forth any great efforts to make themselves a prosperous modern nation.

    Through most of the twentieth century, up to the rise of the Celtic Tiger around 1990, independent Ireland vegetated in poverty, introversion, and backwardness. The lifestyle ideal, according to one historian of the country, was, quote, “to sit around a peat fire discussing the Council of Trent in Gaelic.”

    You don’t know what you’re talking about.

    Ireland’s ‘poverty’ and ‘backwardness’ in comparison with other occidental countries can be gauged by computing the ratio of Irish per capita product to that of any other country. The ratios in 1923 were as follows.

    Ireland: 1.0
    Italy: 0.97
    Great Britain: 0.54
    United States: 0.37
    Chile: 0.91
    Germany: 0.94
    Sweden: 0.82
    Netherlands: 0.55
    France: 0.69
    Greece: 1.3

    Between 1885 and 1929, per capita product in the United States grew by a mean of 1.42% per year. At that pace, the difference between the United States on the one hand and Britain and the Netherlands on the other (assessed in 1923) amounts to 27 years worth of improvements. The difference between Ireland on the one hand and France at that pace was similar – about 26 years of improvement. Between Ireland on the one hand and Italy, Chile, Germany, and Sweden on the other, between 3 and 14 years.

    Growth rates in per capita product over the period running from 1923 to 1990 averaged

    Ireland: 2.3%
    Italy: 2.7%
    Great Britain: 1.9%
    United States: 1.8%
    Chile: 1.2%
    Germany: 2.7%
    Sweden: 2.6%
    Netherlands: 2.0%
    France: 2.3%
    Greece: 2.4%

    Per capita product of Ireland in 1990 was 51% of that of the United States and 71% of Britain. Countries in 2018 with per capita product 51% that of the United States would be Poland, Lithuania, Portugal, and Cyprus. The per capita product of Britain is about 70% that of the United States.

    • Disagree: YetAnotherAnon
    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
  40. @KenH

    Conquest’s piece of Cold War propaganda was shown to cite fake stories from 1935 which pretended that the famine had continued through 1934. It was Robert Green who provided the stories for the Hearst press in 1935 under the pen name Thomas Walker where he claimed to have traveled throughout the USSR in 1934 as a witness to famine. In actuality the famine which had been caused by crop failure in the harvest of 1932 was over with the harvest of 1933 and there was no famine at all in 1934. But Conquest simply cited the stories printed under the name “Thomas Walker” in 1935 as if they had been given as reports from 1933. These were just some of the falsehoods exposed by Douglas Tottle in his book Fraud, Famine and Fascism back in the 1980s. At that time there wasn’t enough hard documentary archival material to be able to produce a real counter-narrative to the Cold War propaganda churned out by Conquest, Mace and others. Instead, Tottle’s focus was on showing bits of fraud in the Cold War publications such as the use of photographs from 1921-2 as pictures misattributed to the 1930s. But since the 1990s, Mark Tauger has led the way in documenting the history and replacing what were already debunked Cold War tracts.

    • Replies: @KenH
  41. @KenH

    I wonder if they change that link periodically? I went there just now and you seem to be right that the link which I got yesterday doesn’t seem to work today. Instead I now come up with this one:

    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00905992.2015.1006476?journalCode=cnap20

  42. This text is despicable. I agree that the US should not be involved in any military conflict without clearly defined goals; but, JD’s actual siding with Russian imperialism is disgusting.

  43. Art Deco says:
    @Brooklyn Dave

    Love the article – and the comparisons to the Irish.

    The comparisons to the Irish are invalid. Less than 5% of the Ukraine’s population favors annexation by Russia and the share favoring a Russophile foreign policy is perhaps 16%, forming a plurality only in the regions of Luhansk and Donetsk. In Ireland as a whole ca. 1984, over 20% of the population were diehard advocates of union with Britain; these were concentrated in the northeast quarter of the island where they formed a majority of about 60% . This segment of Ireland had never been a part of the Irish Free State / Republic.

    While we’re at it, the Irish Free State sat out the 2d World War and the Irish Republic never joined NATO. I don’t recall Britain taking bites of their territory, sponsoring an insurgent group in the country, or massing a six figure population of troops on the border.

  44. Miro23 says:

    And the Ukrainians most likely to emigrate are the best-educated. Remittances from overseas workers already comprise eleven percent of Ukraine’s GDP.

    True that, and many are going to Poland.

    “We have ended up with a whole generation that has gone,” said Irina Vereshchuk, a former mayor of Rava-Ruska, a town on the border with Poland. “Poland has taken our best minds, our best labourers.”
    In towns and cities across Ukraine there are advertisements and recruitment drives to find people keen to move to Poland for higher salaries. According to data from the World Bank, Ukraine is now the biggest recipient of wage remittances of any country in Europe, with £11bn being sent back to the country by workers abroad last year, amounting to 11% of the country’s GDP.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/apr/18/whole-generation-has-gone-ukrainian-seek-better-life-poland-elect-president

  45. Neither Putin nor Biden actually want to fight about Ukraine – they are both bluffing to get leverage over other issues, mostly Nordstream 2 and Russia‘s increasing influence in Western Europe. Both Putin and Biden are also happy to keep the media distracted from domestic issues – which are unflattering for the leaders in both countries. The only real risk is that some Ukrainian hotheads do something stupid.

  46. among these children and grandchildren of Tsarist Russia, there was a vein of sentiment—by no means universal, but common enough to notice—that Ukraine was really just part of the Motherland, of Russia.

    Very true. Just as many older Taiwanese Chinese are adamant that Tibet is an integral part of China.

    • Replies: @mulga mumblebrain
  47. @Art Deco

    Thanks for the numbers … of the PIIGS alone Ireland used the cheap
    EU credit for its intended purpose – to increase competitiveness
    (although at hideous cost, and that tax-evasion-as-business-model will have
    to be dealt with too).
    Even Northern Ireland came out strongly against Brexit, so the days of
    the last colonial holdouts there are numbered too.
    Of course a Federation with Britain would make more sense, and partitioning an island
    is downright idiotic – but truth is everybody and his mama except the English
    was for integration, so if anything this is going to get even funnier
    (I hadn´t thought of the Ukraine as analogue but maybe it fits –
    though if the Steppe were divvied up between Russia and Poland I doubt anyone
    would really notice, including my extended family on every side of every border in the region).

  48. @Art Deco

    Ireland WAS pretty “backward” up until 30-40 years ago (EU accession and tax haven status) if you count “backward” as the opposite of “progressive”.

    40 years ago it was still a very Catholic place which exported most of its progressives to London, and the rump to Dublin. It was also maybe 95% Irish Catholic and the rest Protestants who stayed despite the 20s/30s ethnic cleansing* (it was about 10% Protestant in 1923) or Brit incomers. It was the Ireland of Edna O’Brien’s 1960 novel “The Country Girls”.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Country_Girls

    The Irish censorship board banned The Country Girls upon its publication, adding it to a list of over 1600 books banned in Ireland under the Censorship of Publications Act, 1929.[3][4]

    The public response in Ireland was largely negative as a result of the sexual imagery and national critique throughout the trilogy. Religious and political figures took particular offense. Archbishop McQuaid and then Minister for Justice, Charlie Haughey decided that “the book was filth and should not be allowed inside any decent home.”[5] The trilogy was also subject to multiple public book burnings, including one in O’Brien’s hometown of Tuamgraney.

    I was lucky enough to travel there just before all that changed. People would pile out of Mass on Sunday and the women would go home to organise lunch while the men hit the pub. Finding a pub that served food was almost impossible outside cities, everyone ate at home.

    * Catholics who’d served the the British forces weren’t too welcome in places like Cork either. Some were killed by the IRA. A relative who’d served in the Navy and then the coastguard left and never went back.

    https://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/revealed-why-40000-protestants-fled-ireland-four-years-1126728

    https://www.independent.ie/opinion/analysis/historical-detective-trail-reveals-ethnic-cleansing-by-ira-in-cork-26697528.html

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  49. Art Deco says:

    Even Northern Ireland came out strongly against Brexit, so the days of
    the last colonial holdouts there are numbered too.

    It’s not a colony at all. And I’m betting your wrong.

    Of course a Federation with Britain would make more sense, and partitioning an island
    is downright idiotic –

    It made perfect sense. The two populations were quite antagonistic. The problem was that the central government allowed the Unionist politicians to maintain a political machine that ran roughshod over the Catholic / nationalist minority in various ways.

  50. Art Deco says:
    @YetAnotherAnon

    Ireland WAS pretty “backward” up until 30-40 years ago (EU accession and tax haven status) if you count “backward” as the opposite of “progressive”.

    Yeah, well I don’t. Derbyshire may. I’d refer him to Andrew van der Bilj’s memoir of growing up in the Dutch polderland, ca. 1935. In a Dutch home after Sunday services, families would gather. The women would brew strong coffee, the men would light up the cigars they could afford only once a week, and there would be a point-by-point discussion of the sermon. It was a society at prayer, as was Ireland in 1985.

    Now cycle back a dozen years to 1923, the point at which the internecine warfare in Ireland had concluded. The most affluent countries in the world were the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Britain and the Netherlands in that order. Ireland ranked 19th out of the 51 for which the Maddison Project has produced estimates, ahead of 9 other European countries, behind 11. It was a less affluent country than Britain, but not impoverished on an international scale.

    And he’s wrong on the Irish development trajectory. Ireland was more dynamic than some occidental economies, less than others. It made slow gains in its relative position vis a vis Britain and the U.S. By 1990, it was a second-rank affluent country with real income levels not seen in the United States until the early 1960s.

    • Replies: @Dutch Boy
  51. Dutch Boy says:
    @John Derbyshire

    Hungary is not so subject to the cultural influence of Britain as is English-speaking Ireland.

  52. Hungary is not so subject to the cultural influence of Britain as is English-speaking Ireland.

    Not disagreeing, but this offers only a limited protection. In former Communist countries, local wokesters are getting instruction from foreign NGOs and even governments. For example, in Poland, pro-abortion groups actually were bragging about receiving funding from the Dutch embassy. Ideology is copied but more importantly, techniques are copied. For example, public events are disrupted by activists carrying rainbow flags, even if those events have nothing to do with sexuality.
    A lot of people there, especially young women, want to be good Europeans, and they want to be seen flaunting fashionable political positions.

  53. Dutch Boy says:

    True but the formerly Communist countries seem to have more innate resistance to the poison of Anglo-American liberalism than Western Europe.

    • Agree: nokangaroos
    • Replies: @mulga mumblebrain
  54. “People of this kidney laughed…”
    I guess I don’t get the joke.

  55. Thea says:

    I mean they didn’t put forth any great efforts to make themselves a prosperous modern nation.

    So what? There are joys in life beyond unending capitalist one-upmanship. See Bhutan. Living among people like you who share your way of life, outlook and values could be priceless.

    But really you are wrong. Ireland is on the same suicidal path as England.

  56. KenH says:
    @Patrick McNally

    These were just some of the falsehoods exposed by Douglas Tottle in his book Fraud, Famine and Fascism back in the 1980s.

    From what I’ve been able to find about Tottle’s book it doesn’t disprove very much and merely attempts to chip away at the central claims of other well known authors on the Holodmor. Tottle was most likely a communist himself who received some support from the Soviet Union to promote their largely false narrative seeking to blame the victims of the Holodomor for what befell them.

    No, Stalin and his murderous communists weren’t just well meaning goofballs who made honest mistakes that led to millions of deaths.

    Also take note that Conquest’s book titled “The Great Terror” was reissued and subtitled “A Reassessment” after the Soviet archives were opened up and largely proved his decades earlier claims about the Holodomor and other acts of Soviet murder and brutality correct.

    In fact, Conquest quipped that his book should have been titled “I Told You So, You Fucking Fools”.

    • Thanks: Mark G., JMcG
    • Troll: mulga mumblebrain
  57. @Dutch Boy

    ‘Everything the Communists told us about socialism was untrue, but everything they told us about capitalism was correct’. Old saying in the East.

    • LOL: Dutch Boy
  58. @Art Deco

    Love the poll ‘figures’. It’s hard to disagree with a Banderite goon twisting your arm, but you’re OK with that, obviously.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  59. Art Deco says:
    @mulga mumblebrain

    The goons are twisting the arm of the respondents in your imagination only.

  60. MEH 0910 says:

  61. SafeNow says:

    In illegal immigration news, the Royal Navy has decided that it will not participate in “pushback” technique to push migrant boats, crossing the channel, back to France. Willian Buckley once asked, “Will you shoot them? Will you starve them?” The answers are “No,” of course. But I had hopes that pushing people back would be okay. I was imagining agents armed with gigantic plungers. Along the Rio Grande. The Westchester airport. So, now add, to “no wall”: No pushing.

  62. @Art Deco

    Regardless of English actions toward Ireland over centuries -there has historically been an Irish nation. Not so with Ukraine.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
    , @Brooklyn Dave
  63. Art Deco says:
    @Brooklyn Dave

    Not so with Ukraine.

    You all go tell them they do not exist as a distinct population. I’m sure they’ll be all ears.

  64. Dutch Boy says:
    @Art Deco

    My paternal grandmother (to her daughter who wanted to go to the movies): “Why don’t you go to church instead, it’s better for you.”
    My mother: “But Opoe [grandma], you go to the movies.”
    Opoe: Ja, vrouw but I keep my eyes closed in the bad parts.”

  65. Tsigantes says:
    @Verymuchalive

    No idea why you should be called a troll since I , a citizen of SE Europe , agree with 90% of what you say.

    But – C’mon. Poroshenko had his own “tribal” backers, not to mention the full support of the US DoS neocons. That’s why the US is trying to bring him back now. He was forced to step down NOT because of US displeasure but the overwhelming loathing of Ukrainian voters, which no amount of election fiddling could disguise. Kolomoisky, Zelensky’s promoter and funder, is an oligarch in bad odour with his tribe, but also with the Washington, for seizing and pocketing a huge IMF loan – (a loan given illegally anyway since Ukraine was engaged in civil war). Clearly this loan was meant for other oligarchic distribution, not to mention the hefty kickbacks in Washington.

    All of us should take note that this sick comedy plays out only at high level – without reference or any benefit to the Ukrainian people, who are left to subsist or emigrate. Call this 1990s Russia 2.0 – this time around Ukraine’s enormous wealth is being raped and looted , and by the same Harvard gang.

  66. @Brooklyn Dave

    They exist like Neapolitan or Calabrian Italians exist. The dialect is quite different but more is shared than unshared. Actually southern Italians are not the best example – they had their own country (although ruled by others for centuries) called the Kingdom of Naples or the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.

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