Sunday, March 6, 2022

Iraq and Ukraine: A Contrast in Superpowers

The news has been good locally with COVID case numbers coming down.  Unfortunately, the news overseas has has dampened these good feelings.  Watching the Russian invasion of Ukraine unfold I cannot help but think of parallels and differences between what is happening now and what was happening 19 years ago when the U.S. invaded Iraq.  

There were protests in the streets all over the world as well as the U.S. (pictured at the above right) just as there are now all over the world and in Russia itself (pictured at the right).  The protesters in Russia place themselves at greater risk for being arrested than the U.S. antiwar protesters did.  Russian state media is heavily censored with outlets banned from them calling it a war.  In the U.S., there was more self censorship in the corporate controlled media. For example, Phil Donahue's show on MSNBC being canceled in favor of right wing shock jock Michael Savage.

The right here used the excuse of fighting Islamo-fascism for continuing the war even though there was no evidence of a connection between .  In fact, it only lead to the creation of ISIS in Iraq and Syria and it further destabilized the region.  Putin has said that he is fighting neo-Nazis in Ukraine.  It remains to be seen what impact his invasion will have on neo Nazi movements in Europe and throughout the world.

Internationally, neither the U.S. nor Russia had a U.N. security council resolution condemning their actions because both countries, as permanent members of the council, have veto power over any council resolutions.  The U.N General assembly have an emergency session to condemn Russia's actions. 

One hundred and forty one of the 193 member states voted in favor of a resolution to condemn Russia's actions. Russia, Eritrea, Belarus, Syria, and North Korea voted against the it while 35 nations including China abstained. There was no emergency General Assembly meeting to discuss US actions in Iraq.  This is indicative of Russia's lack of core status.

**Update**

Democracy Now! has a good discussion of Iraq and Ukraine histories.

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