For Vladimir Putin and the Russian people, the invasion of Ukraine is Russia’s most momentous action since the fall of the Soviet Union three decades ago.
For civilians in Ukraine, the war is their homeland’s gravest calamity since the Second World War.
But for the Globalist American Empire (GAE), it’s all a big dumb joke, and a chance to strip Russia of one of GAE’s most essential freedoms: Internet pornography.
Pornhub cockblocks Russian users.
Russian users who tried to go on PornHub were presented with a message saying the content is blocked along with a Ukrainian flag and a message of support to Ukraine.
— Visegrád 24 ???????? (@visegrad24) February 25, 2022
The Globalist American Empire’s response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine is a dark look into the immaturity, frivolousness, mental instability, and passive-aggressiveness that characterizes the ruling class of America and their ideological allies. For GAE, Ukraine isn’t a real war about real issues. It’s a comic book movie, a childish morality play, a war of PR and Redditisms rather than flesh and blood.
If the West saw Ukraine and its cause as truly important, something worth paying a price to assist, they would sanction Russia’s energy sector. But they do not (even the Globalist American Empire must sometimes face reality). So instead, we get a parade of symbolic sanctions, passive-aggressive gestures of anger and hostility. In fact, the tactics the GAE uses against Russia — social ostracisim, deplatforming, and performative public condemnation — are the same feminine tools that it uses domestically to ruins the lives of people who use a politically incorrect word or donate to the wrong protest.
Congressman Eric Swalwell called for kicking out all Russian students in America. Canadian politician Kevin Falcon demanded that all Russian drinks be yanked from the province’s liquor stores.
I'm calling on the NDP to immediately pull Russian spirits from @bcliquorstores and cease all imports of such products by the BCLDB.
We should do all we can to support the people of Ukraine and not benefit Putin’s regime while this unprovoked aggression continues. #BCpoli
— Kevin Falcon (@KevinFalcon) February 25, 2022
In a particularly fitting symbol for the nature of this conflict, some people sought to get Russia kicked out of the Eurovision Song Contest, but failed.
Russia will be allowed to participate in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, despite launching a military assault on neighbouring Ukraine. Organisers called the competition a “non-political cultural event” and said they were “currently planning” to host entrants from both Russia and Ukraine at the event this May.
“We of course will continue to monitor the situation closely,” they added.
Ukraine’s state broadcaster UA:PBC had called for Russia to be suspended. [BBC]
Weak symbolic sanctions have been coupled with a childish emphasis on issues actually unrelated to the war. The West’s leaders can’t even help themselves. Two days into the conflict, the head of Britain’s spy agency, with pronouns proudly included in his biography, declares that the Ukraine war isn’t about NATO or security concerns, it’s about LGBT rights.
With the tragedy and destruction unfolding so distressingly in Ukraine, we should remember the values and hard won freedoms that distinguish us from Putin, none more than LGBT+ rights. So let’s resume our series of tweets to mark #LGBTHM2022
— Richard Moore (@ChiefMI6) February 25, 2022
In reality, LGBT rights are only marginally different between Ukraine and Russia, and public attitudes are virtually identical. That’s irrelevant. For GAE, where LGBT amounts to a national religion, all conflicts are inevitably about it. The war is between good and evil, and LGBT is the greatest good, so the war must be about LGBT issues.
This absurd mixture of cringeworthy rhetoric and childish Manichaeism has totally consumed the Twitterati over the past three days.
Matthew Dowd, once chief strategist for the Bush 2004 campaign and “political analyst” for ABC News, now explains complex geopolitical events using Disney movies made for children.
Let me make this perfectly clear. Putin is Emperor Palpatine. The Ukrainian people and all those who stand up for democracy around the world and here in America are Rey Skywalker, Jyn Erso, and the Rebel alliance. Pick your side.
— Matthew Dowd (@matthewjdowd) February 25, 2022
Exhibitor Relations Co., an entertainment research firm, went further: Children’s movies, it said, might be an excellent way to hit back at Russia.
Let’s talk about sanctions. How about not releasing THE BATMAN in Russia. And all comic book flicks thereafter. It’s a limited thing, sure. Look, we know superheroes aren’t real, but perhaps they can be a small part of the solution. Dish out “consequences they have never seen.”
— Exhibitor Relations Co. (@ERCboxoffice) February 24, 2022
Times like this you know DC/Marvel would join forces to fight this tyranny.
— Exhibitor Relations Co. (@ERCboxoffice) February 24, 2022
For those who see life as one big Harry Potter book, this is commendable, not stupid.
And speaking of seeing life as one big Harry Potter book…
— Raheem J. Kassam (@RaheemKassam) February 25, 2022
Sometimes, pop culture distractions have stepped up with meaningless gestures directly.
— The Simpsons (@TheSimpsons) February 26, 2022
GAE’s love of flimsy symbolism is so great it has infected one of the war’s actual participants. As its military crumbles, Ukraine has launched a soy-based counteroffensive on Twitter, posting memes and zingers seemingly engineered to tickle the brains of Reddit users. It’s even begged Twitter to ban Russia, as if Russia were another right-wing troll to be censored and not a major nation-state.
no place for an aggressor like Russia on Western social media platforms
they should not be allowed to use these platforms to promote their image while brutally killing the Ukrainian people @TwitterSupport
— Ukraine / Україна (@Ukraine) February 24, 2022
Ukraine’s social media understands its audience, at least. It knows that in 2022, the way you show dislike of something is to petulantly ban it from social media and TV:
YouTube continuing to allow Russia Today to monetize their channel amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is exactly the same decision Facebook made last year when it let insurrectionists organize using Facebook Events. This is a company prioritizing profit and engagement over ethics. pic.twitter.com/EuYDgH9XKj
— Ryan Broderick (@broderick) February 25, 2022
But Ukraine’s Twitter complaining goes beyond wanting Russia deplatformed. Their online PR strategy includes memes, begging for crowdfunded donations, and even sad pleas for Elon Musk to save them.
— Ukraine / Україна (@Ukraine) February 24, 2022
Dear @elonmusk ?
Ukraine needs your support. Your stance and your actions matter.
An appeal by our Minister of Digital Transformation here? https://t.co/7dhrwApApZ
— Ukraine / Україна (@Ukraine) February 26, 2022
To Ukraine’s credit (or perhaps the discredit of our times) the Elon plea at least partially worked. Nonetheless, Ukraine’s endless babbling online, coupled with constant leaks about the supposed military and intelligence situation (from both Ukraine and the West), stands in marked contrast to Russia, which has been disciplined and relatively quiet with is military operations.
There is a non-obvious thing that English speaking world may not know about the conflict:
There are almost no official statements from Russian DoD, almost no reporting from Russian journalists, and few leaks.
On the other hand, the Ukrainian side talks about almost everything.
— üst-vsk ? (@devarbol) February 26, 2022
Over and over, everywhere, the same patterns recur. Everything about the Globalist American Empire’s response to Ukraine seems performative and unserious. Instead of taking real action to achieve a specific outcome (such as peace in Ukraine), or strategically staying out of the conflict, the GAE chooses empty and passive-aggressive stunts. Flimsy sanctions and petulant speech crackdowns do nothing to help a civilian stuck in Kiev or Kharkov, but they inflict petty harms on ordinary Russians and allow mentally fragile elites to feel virtuous in the process, like they are “doing something.” This “self-care” approach to foreign policy is predictable for a feminized elite prone to embarrassing public anxiety attacks:
? Thread: Russia’s attack on Ukraine means there’s a stressful news cycle ahead of us. The reality of conflict is always a shock to the system.
Here are 5 ways to cope.https://t.co/L3NR6BONZt
— NPR (@NPR) February 25, 2022
What I still can't understand is why? Why is Putin doing this? Why?
— Julia Ioffe (@juliaioffe) February 24, 2022
America’s approach is also so fake and passive-aggressive because, for America’s isolated elite, so immune to consequences for decades, reality has been supplanted by PR. This dark truth about America’s response became obvious when officials (predictably) told the press about failed efforts to turn China against Russia.
The US asked China to help stop the invasion. The Chinese gave US intelligence to the Russians.
The US "argued that because China was widely seen as a partner of Russia, its global image could suffer." Amazing the emphasis we put on PR over everything. https://t.co/6Fp8xBuQTS pic.twitter.com/Un9qoMh4aS
— Richard Hanania (@RichardHanania) February 25, 2022
Beijing is supposed to ignore its own hard interests, and its own lack of interests in Ukraine, for the sake of China’s “global image.” For America, this is all-important. For serious countries, more relevant concerns prevail. While America goes through performative histrionics about Ukraine, nations outside its sphere of influence are looking at events with a shrug. Despite heavy pressure from America, India has been silent about Russia (which it has long used as an arms supplier). Middle East states like the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, which have enjoyed years of U.S. patronage, have notably not taken America’s side on Ukraine. Even Israel, America’s “greatest ally,” doesn’t care:
The Biden administration had reportedly asked Israel permission to provide Ukraine with air defense systems, and Saudi Arabia to increase its oil production. Both states refused, leaving the United States with fewer cards to play as Russian missiles slammed into Ukrainian cities and Russian troops began crossing the border early Thursday morning.
Meanwhile, Qatar — a country President Biden recently declared a “major non-NATO ally” — publicly declined to take sides in the conflict, while the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan publicly cozied up to Russia on the eve of the invasion. [Responsible Statecraft]
For all of the above countries, foreign policy is a rational endeavor, grounded in real issues. They can only gape in astonishment as America has a panic attack over a war its own arrogance created.
This “PR over everything” attitude isn’t just flippant and useless. For the people of Ukraine, it is deadly. To impress Western on-lookers, Ukraine has pulled stunts like handing out assault rifles to any person willing to fight.
Ukrainian authorities giving out kalashnikovs to anyone who wants them in Kiev, seem to be very determined to make civilians fight pic.twitter.com/BsQHMy26y4
— Russians With Attitude (@RWApodcast) February 25, 2022
The PR approach to conflict doesn’t just make warfare more lethal. It’s also a direct impediment to peace. While Ukraine’s president has expressed a willingness to negotiate with Putin to end the fighting, far-off fanatics in the State Department are issuing shrill condemnations, demanding that Ukrainians keep dying so that America, while not willing to fight, may at least continue to tweet angrily.
Zelensky: "Russia, I want peace. Let's talk."
Putin: "Ukraine, we can talk."
US State Department: "Isn't there someone that you forgot to ask?" https://t.co/7lYHmzEDFe
— Niccolo Luppino de Rivera Soldo (@fbfsubstack) February 26, 2022
GAE’s histrionic meltdown is in sharp contrast to Russia, which has approached the conflict with the gravitas one would expect for a major conflict. Westerners have called Putin’s two major speeches before the invasion things like “raving,” a “screed,” “unhinged,” an “hour-long rant.” In reality, Putin’s speeches are none of those things. They draw heavily on decades of Soviet history, as well as the history of Russian relations with the West. They make real rhetorical concessions (Putin admits the 2014 Euromaidan revolution was motivated by valid anger against a corrupt Ukrainian government). Certainly, Putin’s speeches are partisan. He is a politician justifying a major military effort, not a historian pursuing an ideal of objectivity. But this is also true: Putin’s speeches about Ukraine are more detailed, and more substantive, than any foreign policy speech delivered by an American president in decades.
Of course, most GAE pundits and policymakers don’t know this, because they haven’t even read the speech. But even if they did, they would barely able to engage with it, so shallow and moralizing is their understanding of all issues.
That is the true revelation of the Ukraine crisis. In a world of serious nations with serious concerns, the Globalist American Empire is distinguished most of all for its clownishness. This critical lack of seriousness poses far more of a danger to our nation than anything happening in Russia or Ukraine.