Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Ukraine’s Invisible People | The Kremlin Stooge

This is another guest post, this time from the blogger I know only as Ivan, and from his blog, Ivan’s Shady Existence. It’s not often you find a fan of existentialism written in English when English is not that writer’s first language, which makes this all the more pleasurable a find. I have to say at the outset that I love this guy’s writing – existentialism is a niche field, and about half of what passes for it within that field is stuffy, pretentious, self-absorbed twaddle from people who are trying too hard.

Existentialism at its best is about discovery, surprise – epiphany. There are few secrets really left in our world and fewer still in human behavior, which is tiresomely the same over and over, allowing for slight generational shifts in values and morals. But is that exciting? It certainly is not. It takes a great writer to tell an old story and make it seem new again; to talk about ordinary reality so that you feel it, and write so that by the time you reach the end of the piece, you have lost all the spare room you had in your head for all the great phrases you told yourself you would have to remember, and make you wish you had written them down, convinced that using them on your own audience will cause them to reach out with the same impact they did to you.

Not all his stuff is existentialist in flavour, and this piece is a straightforward analysis of yet another in the west’s quiver-full of blunders; the failure to deal honestly with the complaints of the easterners in Ukraine and the preference for characterizing them all as insurgents who lack the imagination to grab the brass ring and ride the EU carousel. They can’t call them “rebels”, because western backing for dour religious ascetics and fundamentalist hoodlums in Libya and Syria has invested the term with romance and adventurism. So the chosen course seems to be to ignore them unless and until there is a skirmish between them and government forces – when the course of action which might have saved national unity, at a point which passed some time back, would have been to listen. But it’s hard to be a good listener when you’re a talker. Without further ado;

Ukraine’s Invisible People

Ukraine is a riddle to Westerners and Russians alike.

The Russian nationalist is befuddled by the Russian-speaking citizens of Kiev – seemingly tied to Russia by their language, culture, history and religion- taking to the streets with the EU flag, condemning Moscow’s influence in their country.

Complete story at - Ukraine’s Invisible People | The Kremlin Stooge

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