Garry Kasparov Calls BS on the World’s “Strong Response”
I am just placing this out here for those who, like myself, do not have Twitter accounts and generally do not waste time in the world of competing echo chambers. Here, for once, is an echo that deserves to reverberate around for a while. Open your mind to it, and give it your full consideration. That’s all.
We are witnessing, literally watching live, Putin commit genocide on an industrial scale in Ukraine while the most powerful military alliance in history stands aside. It’s impossible not to be emotional, but let us also be rational and focus our rage on the facts. 1/13
— Garry Kasparov (@Kasparov63) March 3, 2022
And here is the remainder of Kasparov’s thirteen-part commentary today, copied directly from his Twitter feed:
Putin once again told Macron to go to hell, no surprise. NATO/EU has already told Putin they won’t touch his forces, so why should he listen? Russia is lifting target limitations and the death toll is rising every hour and lack of water & electricity is critical.
No treaty forbids NATO nations from fighting to defend in Ukraine. It’s a choice based on the risk of Putin going nuclear, many say. That arming Ukrainians is an acceptable risk of WWIII & the citizenship of the pilot or soldier changes Putin’s nuclear calculus, or NATO’s.
If they care so much about the fine print and think Putin does too, ask Zelensky to issue Ukrainian passports to any volunteer to fly in combat. Sell jets to Ukraine for €1 each and paint UKR flags on them. Do you think Putin will care? Is it worth the lives lost?
This is already World War III. Putin started it long ago & Ukraine is only the current front. He will escalate anyway, and it’s even more likely if he succeeds in destroying Ukraine because you have again convinced him you won’t stop him even though you could.
Biden & others insist NATO would retaliate should Putin attack Baltic members. Watching Ukraine, I am not sure of that at all, and Putin won’t be either. If the calculation is about nuclear risk, it’s no different over Estonia than Ukraine. Don’t say “Putin would never”.
If this sounds familiar, it’s the same argument from 2014, when Putin invaded E Ukraine and annexed Crimea. It was too risky to stop him, I was told, as I pleaded for intervention and warned he would never stop there. Here we are, with bombs raining down.
Risk and costs are higher now because the “reasonable” people in the West always choose lower risk today to guarantee higher risk tomorrow. Clearing the UKR skies after a warning period is risky. Letting Putin destroy Ukraine is riskier, & a human and moral disaster.
There is no waiting this out. This isn’t chess; there’s no draw, no stalemate. Either Putin destroys Ukraine and eventually hits NATO with an even greater catastrophe, or Putin falls in Russia. He cannot be stopped with weakness.
The corridors to get weapons, food, and medicine in and refugees out are narrowing and can be closed. Putin can bomb the trains, close the borders with NATO nations. The odds of Russian forces hitting a NATO asset are increasing, and then what? Still watching?
If your answer is no, that if a wing of a RU jet crosses Polish airspace, of course NATO will engage immediately, ask why thousands of Ukrainians civilians dying first matters less than a treaty, and what that says to Putin. That you’re honorable, or a fool? We know.
As I said in 2014 and a fateful week ago, the price of stopping a dictator always goes up. What would have been enough to stop Putin 8 years or 6 months or 2 weeks ago is not enough today, and the price will rise again tomorrow. Fight. Find a way.
Putin vows to exterminate Ukrainians while we watch. Ukraine did nothing wrong but try to join the democratic world that is now witnessing crimes against humanity in real time. Not unable. Unwilling.
I am no neoconservative or “democracy project” type. Nor do I buy into the fantasy that a war can solve ultimate problems, which is to say that I do not believe there can ever be a “last war” — or even that such a “last war” would be desirable. I do not know what should or can be done in the very short term to prevent the total catastrophe that we are witnessing this week, unfolding on an hourly basis. In fact, for me, that is precisely the value and primary significance of Kasparov’s impassioned outcry, namely to draw attention to the folly, duplicity, and outright dishonor on the grandest scale, that have conspired, over many years, to lead to this seemingly irreversible moment.
We are here now, regrettably, there are reasons we are here, and most of those reasons are directly related to the cowardice, greed, and self-serving myopia of our supposed betters in the global ruling elite. The hell that awaits them is substantially different from the hell that awaits the rest of us today, thanks to their vice and vanity. Different, darker, and infinitely more shameful.
Do not let them dare to boast of their strength and boldness in resisting Putin today. Their supposed strength is, you may be sure, the very least they could do, and their boldness nothing but another form of self-seeking calculation, or a wish not to feel left out of this excellent grandstanding opportunity. If they had any real strength, boldness, statesmanship, or humanity, they would have been making this big stand of theirs for years, long before we reached the point of no return, which, I suspect, is where we are now — thanks to them, and to ourselves, of course, for continuing to allow ourselves to be “represented” by such small beings. Perhaps the representation is accurate. To that extent, their shame reflects on us as well.