The author however fails to remind us of Putin's elegant and verbose criticisms of the US and its allies' interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Afghanistan (twice - 1980 & 2001), Iraq, Georgia, Kosovo and that list above, have all been justified with disingenuous, self-serving rationalisations. 'Preventive war', 'humanitarian protection of civilian populations' or 'democracy building' - they're all weasel words invented by resurgent imperialists.Last week, US Secretary of State John Kerry, who used to be a sensible fellow before becoming corrupted by power, blasted Russia: “you just don’t invade a country under a phony pretext!”
I guess Kerry has never heard of the US invasions of the Dominican Republic, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Haiti, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and Libya. Or can’t remember Vietnam and the Gulf of Tonkin “incident.”
This article makes some good points too:
So, we can all be clear. Neither the mobilisation of Russian forces in the Crimea, nor the forthcoming referendum, nor the motivations behind the leaders of the Kiev coup, nor the coordinated outrage of the Western powers have really anything to do with either the promotion or preservation of democracy. The West ignores democratic concerns when it suits - witness the silence on the military counter-coup in Egypt - and Russia ignores elected leaders when it suits, and cries croco-democratic tears when that seems expedient. The US imposes or denigrates the Monroe doctrine at will, according to whim, tide and Wall Street.Putin’s casus belli may be one he manufactured largely by himself, but so was George W. Bush’s case for going to war in Iraq. America’s perma-hawks — the politicians and pundits who beat the drums for intervention in Iraq and now criticize President Obama for insufficient bellicosity about Ukraine — need to explain why the infinitely self-serving doctrine of “preventive war,” which they used to justify our Iraq adventure, should be reserved for us alone. Russia’s military installations in Crimea, Putin has said, were threatened by Ukrainian revolutionaries. When power needs a threat to justify its exercise, power invariably finds one. (My emphasis)
Whatever the unrest in Ukraine is really about, three things you can categorically say it is NOT about, are democracy, human rights and respect for the rule of international law.