the kidnapped reason

Image: Eddy Silva


Thousands of people have been taking a stand on the conflict in Ukraine as if they were inhabitants of another planet

The conflict in Ukraine is serious. Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro warned on March 9, 2022 that “there is a real danger of a world nuclear war. Already the first phase of the war started with the economic sanctions”.

However, thousands of people have been positioning themselves as if they were inhabitants of another planet. They opine without major concerns about its consequences. It is as if the suicidal behavior denounced by ecological criticism had taken root in thought. Even that awareness they had about how the media induced self-destructive behavior suddenly disappeared.

The ghost of the Russian danger has destroyed people's common sense. The fact that they adopt a position that coincides with that defended by the same media that supports the worst injustices and atrocities in the world, is not able to lead them to doubt. They made fun of the absurd “convictions” of Deltan Dallagnol to accuse Lula, but they believe that theirs are true because they are democrats, humanists, socialists, leftists and even revolutionaries. There's a kind of cognitive block that words can't unlock.

The so-called “audience segmentation” is guaranteed. Those who are in favor of one or another position reinforce their opinions among themselves as if they were football fans and anyone who tries to debate is faced with a wall of dislike and indisposition. At best, there is a dogmatic repetition of arguments. Although they are people who are confident in the capacity of science to reach the truth, they seem to unconsciously participate in debates looking for reinforcements for a certain emotional stability. That's why we stopped polemicizing on the networks. This is a record for the near future that some will be able to appreciate when the frantic and irrational turmoil calms down and some common sense recovers, as we hope.

In this context, “moderates” and “radicals” come to coincide in ideas, the same ones that long ago kept them divided. Both with their nuances, wistfully return to their “communist” past along with the dogmatic and sectarian debates they provoked. They interpret this new situation using those concepts that no longer worked at the time. The moderates gave strength to their speech, resuming old-new Manichaeisms to end up repeating with Volodymyr Zelensky that “Russia is on the path of evil”. They embody the spirit of films such as Operation Red Sparrow 2018 that, incidentally, has been circulating again these days, clearly revealing how Hollywood has been working with NATO to fight Russia.

Were it not for contemporary actors, it would seem like a product of the height of the Cold War. It is “well done”, to induce hatred in the public against present-day Russians, attributing to them the same “fame” as in the Stalinist era. Terrible torture scenes such as those unconfessably developed by the US in Guantánamo, are presented as routine practices in Russia today. The consequence of this “revival” is a shameful level of denial of reality, accompanied by an evident intellectual setback, a degradation of reason.

Educated people defend texts that supposedly have “solid arguments” only to find outright lies about the terrible 2014 coup d'état in Ukraine. Humanists claiming that the coup was “a democratic revolution that deposed a president after three months of peaceful occupation”, when it is public and notorious that 42 people were burned alive on May 2, 2014 in Odessa, after being surrounded in the House of the Trade Unions by a maddened mob of neo-Nazis. It is revolting. As Fernando Horta said in a speech about the loss of criteria for truth, it is about “zero logic” or the purest schizophrenia. A disquieting negationism: where does alienation end and where does a sui generis bad faith?

While moderates lie by mimicking the rhetoric of the right and its media, radicals invent new theories to prove that they are different from the US and NATO. Some nostalgic for communism in the Trotskyist version, instead of reflecting on why that “political revolution” that they so defended to replace the Stalinist bureaucracy did not occur, appear in this conflict of the XNUMXst century inventing a new “Russian imperialism” that must be equally fought because it responds to the interests of the “Russian oligarchy”.

Despite its critical and heterodox trajectory, the Unified Secretariat of the Fourth International declared “No to Putin’s invasion of Ukraine!” and “Support the Ukrainian resistance!”. Revolutionaries supporting the neo-Nazi resistance? Surprises no longer surprise. NATO had been bringing its weapons closer to Russia since 2001 without it reacting and, however, more daring analysts dare to invent a “renewed Russian belligerence”. From there, serious “revealing” analyzes emerge of how Putin and the Russian government behave in the same way as the US and even worse, as they inform us that a former adviser to Gorbachev would have predicted years ago that Western policies against Russia would bring “a authoritarian rule in Moscow that would revive the old Russian imperial tradition”. In short, Putin would not be reacting to preserve his country's sovereignty, he is the result of imperialist aggressiveness.

Historical detail. Shortly before his assassination, Trotsky had come to the defense of the USSR, despite its bureaucratic and authoritarian government. At the worst moment of the Moscow processes, being persecuted, seeing assistants and family members murdered, he did not hesitate for a second in stating that if the USSR was attacked by imperialism, the workers of the world had a duty to defend it. The fact that it was the Red Army, which he created, was primarily responsible for the defeat of Nazism, confirms that he was right. He made many mistakes, but in that complex and difficult situation facing humanity, he knew which side of history he should be on. 80 years later, those who claim to claim his legacy invent absurd theses to justify their complicity with the aggression that has been facing Russia. To deny that the situation in Ukraine stems from this is a lot of ideological blindness. In this “logic”, Putin turns out to be worse than Stalin.

Interestingly, these critics forget or trivialize the explicit objective announced by Putin: to protect the population of Dombas, to demilitarize and denazify Ukraine. While extremist movements are gaining strength around the world, Russia proposes a resolution at the UN condemning the glorification of Nazism. The US and Ukraine voted against. What about?

Ukraine has been refusing to comply with the Minks agreements on US orders while Russia has been denouncing for years, without being listened to, the escalation of aggression in Dombás (14 dead, 30 injured). In a certain way, it is similar to the repeated denunciations of women for femicides in the world. That additional revolt and impotence when it is known that the murdered woman had been denouncing the danger she was in, but was ignored by that masculine power that only believes the denunciations when it is too late.

Vladimir Putin put an end to waiting before Kiev's escalation killed more people and its borders were threatened by a nuclear-armed Ukraine. Putin had no alternative. Those who don't want to understand are theoretical keyboard pacifists. We would like to see them repeat their “indignant condemnation” of the Russian special military operation, standing face to face with the families of the victims of these eight years of continuous war.

There is a thinker claimed by moderates and radicals, Walter Benjamin. Moderate from a militant point of view, but very subversive in terms of ideas, he launched an idea with which everyone can identify, perhaps the most powerful of all because he was born being from the future. In the 1940s, in the middle of World War II, Benjamin had realized the self-destruction capacity achieved by humanity, today infinitely increased by means of a nuclear war. Therefore, Benjamin thought of revolution as a necessity to prevent humanity from walking towards the precipice: “Marx said that revolutions are the locomotive of world history. Perhaps things will present themselves differently. It may be that revolutions are the act by which humanity traveling on that train pulls the emergency brake.” If Russia were to be defeated (which it will not be), who in this really existing world is in a position to apply the emergency brakes to the US and NATO?

While “Marxists”, “democrats” and critics of all persuasions avoid this real question, sterilely debating whether or not Putin is left-wing or whether Russia is this or that, stubborn and rebellious reality insists on showing the truth. Kiev troops are using Ukrainian families as human shields. A secret order issued on January 22, 2022 by the commander of the National Guard of Ukraine was discovered confirming that a large-scale military offensive in Dombas was being prepared to take place in March of this year.

If that wasn't enough, laboratories that had been developing biological weapons components with US support were discovered near the border with Russia. Washington, from the height of its great credibility, denies the accusations; however, undersecretary Vitoria Nuland admitted the existence of these laboratories, stating that they work to “prevent any of these research materials from falling into the hands of Russian forces”. Despite this confession, they tried to avoid the seriousness of the matter, saying that these laboratories only work on peaceful matters. On the contrary, Russia proved that one of the lines of investigation worked on the “possibility of transmission of particularly dangerous infections through migratory birds”. Another, “in the creation of bioagents capable of selectively affecting different ethnic groups”.

This conflict will come to an end, we hope that soon, and in due time the world will have a real panorama of everything that is happening and the true reasons that generated this war. Reason and peace will win. For an end to the conflict in Ukraine! For a multipolar world truly at peace!

*Anisio Pires he is professor of sociology at the Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela (UBV).


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