Can’t compare Russia's actions with America's

Can’t compare Russia's actions with America's

Letter to the Editor,

This letter is being written in response to Cory Anderson’s recent Letter to the Editor (March 19). I found his critique of Russian actions to be shallow and misleading in justifying that America has and does the same things that we “resent” about Russia.

Without ever mentioning the unprovoked invasion and war that Putin’s Russia started with Ukraine, a sovereign Democratic nation, he refers only to Russian actions in the entire letter. The Ukraine has been an independent country since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991. He asserted that “tit-for-tat” threats have triggered a Russian desperate militarized response in part because it’s being provoked by Western states. What tit-for-tat does he refer to? The Ukraine did not build up their military forces on the Russian border or invade them.

As for Western states provoking them, does he mean NATO, which was created from the 1949 North Atlantic Treaty? NATO is a security alliance to protect its members from foreign aggression, and countries must apply to become part of the organization. Putin started this war and is targeting homes, apartment buildings, schools, maturity hospitals and businesses, even bombing a theater clearly marked as having children inside. Russians are killing civilians indiscriminately. These are war crimes!

Somehow, Mr. Anderson’s reasoning is that maybe this is the same tendencies that America has to draw on the equivalencies between the U.S and Russia. Neither NATO nor America target civilians. Yes, all military conflicts and wars incur collateral civilian damages, but we do not intentionally target them.

In his references that America equivalencies compare to Russian action, he alludes to an America-backed invasion of Yugoslavia — we didn’t. The other countries mentioned were all targeted for harboring either Al-Qaddafi or ISIS and ISIL terrorists, not an outright invasion to take over a country. He makes a nebulous assertion that our globetrotting foreign policy crosses other borders to bring our cultural, economic and political order to other sovereign countries without indicating where this might be going on. American influence has been to promote democracies with other nations. Is that such a bad thing?

Putin is a despot, ruling a kleptocracy government, who kills journalists, poisoned and jailed his political opponents, made it a crime to mention the word “war” with a 15-year prison sentence, jails protesters, doesn’t allow freedom of speech (a cornerstone of democracy), shut down all independent news outlets, attacked its own people in Chechnya, and previously invaded Georgia and Ukrainian Crimea. Russia joined Syria’s Bashar al-Assad’s civil war and targeted civilian centers in Aleppo, bombing it into a waste land. This is not a comparable equivalency of America’s foreign policy.

It’s not Americans who resent Russia’s actions; it’s the Ukrainian people who resent Russia’s actions. We, as the world’s first democracy, should be appalled and outraged by Russian actions. Using false sympathetic equivalencies is wrong to justify the atrocities Russia is doing to the Ukrainian people.

Greg Stoner

Big Prairie

Letters to the Editor are accepted by email at Writers are allowed one letter every 30 days, and letters should include name and address (address not published) and be 500 words or less. AloNovus Corp. reserves the right not to publish and to edit for clarification purposes.

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