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No to NATO

Commentary by Cassia Laham |
March 1, 2022
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Miami, FL - Events are unfolding quickly surrounding Ukraine. It is therefore imperative that the anti-war movement in the United States mobilize for peace and against any further possible escalation by the United States. This means demanding: no war with Russia, no to NATO expansion, and no to sanctions.

It is important for Americans to understand that the current crisis in Ukraine did not begin with Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine; rather, it has been a crisis in the making for decades, as the United States has expanded the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) military alliance well beyond original post-Cold War agreements, throughout Eastern Europe and up to Russia’s doorstep.

NATO is a major military alliance that was created in 1949 and was originally composed of the United States and its key Cold War allies in western Europe. The United States helped form this dangerous military alliance in an overtly aggressive move meant to intimidate the Soviet Union and prevent the spread of socialism in post-WWII Europe. In response, the Soviet Union eventually created the Warsaw Pact, a military alliance of its own.

Since the breakup of the Soviet Union and the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact in 1991, the United States has gone back on its word to the Russians to maintain NATO’s Cold War borders. Instead, NATO has expanded to include much of Eastern Europe, surrounding Russia with military bases and weapons, all meant to protect American political and economic dominance.

The United States and NATO have been the biggest purveyors of death and violence in the world since the Cold War began, from Korea to Vietnam, Yemen to Iraq, Yugoslavia to Libya.

And in 2014, with specific reference to the current situation in Ukraine, the United States backed an illegal coup against the democratically elected government of Ukraine. The United States armed and supported fascist, neo-Nazi movements, and militias (like the Azov Battalion) in Ukraine, groups that are responsible for killing thousands of ethnic Russians throughout Ukraine in a war that was never ended. 

Since 2014, the end goal of the United States in Ukraine has been to incorporate the country into the ranks of the European Union and NATO. Russia made it clear that absorbing Ukraine into NATO would be unacceptable and would be taken as a military threat. But rather than negotiate in good faith, for seven years the United States resorted to sanctions, more arms to Ukraine, and anti-Russia chest-pounding.

So, when it comes to war, especially in Ukraine, the United States has no room to point fingers, serve as a moral compass, or pass judgement on Russia or any other countries. It is laughable to hear U.S. officials denounce this war, when it did everything it could to instigate it.

And it is even more ridiculous to think that the talking heads in the corporate media care about the people of Ukraine, when they have ignored the NATO-backed starvation and murder of millions of Yemenis for seven years now. Besides, why would anyone believe a word the mainstream media has to say about wars abroad, when these are the same fools who tried to sell the American people Saddam Hussein’s imaginary weapons of mass destruction as justification for the U.S. war in Iraq that would for kill 1 million Iraqis?

As American anti-war activists, it is our responsibility to the global peace movement to first and foremost to demand an end to this country's imperialist expansion and aggression, in Ukraine and around the world. It’s our responsibility to pressure our government to stop using Ukraine as a proxy-war with Russia, and to end NATO expansion. As peace activists in the most powerful imperialist country in the world, we must work ensure that the United States does not continue to escalate through unilateral or NATO military action or any form of warfare, including sanctions.

Those of us who truly want peace must demand:

No War with Russia!

No to NATO Expansion!

No to Sanctions!

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