February 22, 2014

What it took

"Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history that has any other factor ..."
Mr. Dubois, Starship Troopers

The moral victory of the hard men of the Ukrainian opposition in Kiev in trampling on the most recent European-negotiated compromise solution and successfully driving the elected President out of the capital comes not just from dying bravely, but from winning. 

It's worth recalling what happened on Thursday before it gets tidied up. Right after dawn, the fighters opened passages through their defensive barriers and charged the terrified riot police, who opened fire on them. Scores of the attackers were shot down, but enough crossed the no man's land to capture dozens of police and drive the rest back. This combination of sacrifice and triumph provided the moral basis for tearing up the latest compromise and leaving the fighters' bands in charge of the streets. I doubt if either dying or winning alone would have sufficed.

Eventually, the politicians and bankers will retake control, but it's worth remembering the events as they happened.
    

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

Maybe they got some Chechen blood.

Anonymous said...

If Ukies were as brave against corruption in general, theirs would be a great nation.

But Uki politics is our corruption good, your corruption bad.

dearieme said...

I blame the Vikings.

Anonymous said...

"Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history that has any other factor ..."

In the end, the future is decided not so much by those who break the pieces but those who pick up the pieces.

Mobs may bring down the system, but they don't know how to run it. They'll grow tired, and someone will come to pick up the pieces.

We'll have to see who picks up the pieces. In the long run, the mobs in the streets will go back to the same homes, same lives. They will have won not for themselves but for others who will pick up the pieces and rule as the new boss.

Anonymous said...

"""ventually, the politicians and bankers will retake control, but it's worth remembering the events as they happened.""""


Question: Why

Why?

Why should AMERICA, really, in the final analysis, with no direct connection to Ukraine for anything, really, have to care about this event....at all whasoever?

Answer: We shouldn't and we really don't have to since it's not our direct concern and neither is the country in our strategic interest, Victoria Nuland notwithstanding.

Time to change the channel and focus on....WWG or T or whatever forceful social cause that US intellectuals constantly and continuously tell us is so very important.

Anonymous said...

"Eventually, the politicians and bankers will retake control, but it's worth remembering the events as they happened."

Why? If Vicky Nuland's puppets take and the oligarchs retake control, as I think is likely, this will not be worth remembering at all. It will all have been in vain. The usual suspects could have peacefully rigged the next elections instead. And it's not like Yanukovich wasn't letting them steal. Those Right Sector yobs will have been played for the fools that they are. Used as tools.

Hunsdon said...

No one listened to Jay Carney's call for a political solution?

Hunsdon said...

Anonydroid at 4:17 PM said: But Uki politics is our corruption good, your corruption bad.

Hunsdon said: Yeah, I hear that's a particularly Ukrainian thing.

Reg Cæsar said...

This combination of sacrifice and triumph provided the moral basis… I doubt if either dying or winning alone would have sufficed.

To update Patton, no dumb bastard ever won the peace by dying for his country, but by making himself and the other poor dumb bastard die for their country.

Marc Pisco said...

We don't have to pick a side to root for. Both may be swine (that's my bet). Both may be OK, or it may be unknowable of meaningless. The Cathedral may be supporting the right side by accident, or even -- seriously! -- by intent. Once upon a time, it consistently supported Batistas over Castros, bad South Vietnams over much worse North Vietnams, and iffy Pinochets over bad Allendes.

Not lately, I know. But anything is possible, and Obama and Kerry and McCain are deeply stupid, and deeply ignorant, men. They're so incompetent and clueless, their intentions are almost irrelevant.

Lucky for me, I don't have any reason to pick a side here. You don't either. I recommend you refrain.

Reg Cæsar said...

But Uki politics is our corruption good, your corruption bad.

So the ones who settled in Chicago a century or so ago went home, and brought the city's Democratic platform with thdm?

Hunsdon said...

Anonydroid at 4:21 PM said: In the end, the future is decided not so much by those who break the pieces but those who pick up the pieces.

Hunsdon said: There's probably a Bastiat broken windows fallacy comment in there somewhere, but it's also literally true that to make an omelette you have to break a few eggs.

David said...

After Ukraine is turned into a US/EU client state, what comes next?

Either WWC, or Putin's revenge and then WWC.

It has been interesting to observe during the recent unpleasantness that the West retains its capacity for supporting any SOBs who constitute a handy stick to beat the Russkies with. Of course, sometimes this creates an Osama bin Laden, but "tomorrow is another day," as the American philosopher Scarlett O'Hara said.

Anonymous said...

What is really striking is there has been no looting within Kiev or the Presidential palace. Is this a first among coup d'etats?

Anonymous said...

This seems like an inspiring narrative for about two seconds. Then you realized that fighting in a revolution where you don't have both the will and the ability to impose your will upon victory means you're a sucker who dies for some cheap adulation.

The Bolsheviks had it right--we seize power and impose communism. The Khomeinists in Iran had it right--we seize power and we impose Sharia. Pinochet had it right (morally too, unlike the other two examples)--we seize power and crush communism by doing whatever it takes. What is Right Sector's plan? They have none.

Come May 25, the revolutionary fervor will have worn off and the equally corrupt Yulia Tymoshenko will be elected president.

What is interesting to me about the alt-right is the hatred of elites common among many. It is perfectly legitimate to criticize an elite for not having the interests of the people at heart and to demand they do better, but what society has functioned without elites? The sentiment borders on utopianism, on expecting human nature to miraculously change.

sunbeam said...

I'm kind of confused as to what exactly is going on in the Ukraine.

I take it this isn't according to "The Plan?"

If it isn't, I'm not sure what pieces Nuland is going to pick up. Right not the only other real player looks to be the Russian aligned bloc.

Look, I see lots of people making comments, but it isn't really useful unless you

1) Really interested in the Ukraine, and have done a lot of reading.
2) Have been there and know the country and the people there.
3) Are Ukrainian, Russian, Polish, Moldovan, whatever and just know the area and the players in general.

Just reading news reports and watching the BBC isn't going to tell anyone squat about what is going on. It's good for telling you so many people got shot or something like that. But as far as what is going on behind the scenes, well it's totally useless.

Anonymous said...

Eventually, the politicians and bankers will retake control, but it's worth remembering the events as they happened.

I assume the benefit of remembering the events as they happened is this knowledge may be useful to us as an example in the future.

Svigor said...

What is interesting to me about the alt-right is the hatred of elites common among many. It is perfectly legitimate to criticize an elite for not having the interests of the people at heart and to demand they do better, but what society has functioned without elites? The sentiment borders on utopianism, on expecting human nature to miraculously change.

What's interesting to me about your comment is that you find "elite" a more interesting component of "elite treachery" than "treachery."

Blogosaurus said...

It's interesting to think about what a more ruthless government would do? Tiananmen, for example.

How would America react if protesters stormed gov't buildings after an elected official was voted into office?

Anonymous said...

Interesting to compare with the Egyptian equivalent. There's a marked difference in desire to get in close versus throwing stuff from a distance.

Similar to Black rioters in the UK.

More recently barbarian.

anony-mouse said...

1/ And what's wrong with people who know how to run things running things?

2/ And what happened after the American Revolution? President Sam Adams? President Patrick Henry?

No. The hotheads were abandoned in favor of the 'politicians and bankers'.

3/ There are a variety of places around where no one is running things (eg Libya, Somalia). For some reason not a place where people are moving to.

4/ People here ask, why should Americans care? Well it seems reading the paleo press that a lot of paleos are very interested.

Interesting.

The Ukrainian Nationalists vs. the Putin Worshippers.

Too bad they can't both lose.

Well maybe...

The Anti-Gnostic said...

How would America react if protesters stormed gov't buildings after an elected official was voted into office?

The most recent dust-up I can recall was a tax protest in Alabama about 5 or so years ago. There were suitably horrified accounts in the national media about legislators running for their offices after a window was smashed.

I believe any Americans who engaged in a protest of this vehemence against the US government would be completely massacred. I don't think there would even be any corpses left.

Unanimous said...

And what happened after the American Revolution? President Sam Adams? President Patrick Henry?

Adams became Governor of Massachusetts and Henry became Governor of Virginia. Under the Articles of Confederation there was no President, and George Washington served two terms after the Constitution was ratified. I wouldn't consider Adams and Henry punching below their weight as Governors. How many Presidents can you have?

Anonymous said...

Patrick Henry and Sam Adams were awful examples, although the point he was making was excellent, given that they were as elite as can be. Henry owned 78 slaves and a huge plantation. Adams was obviously a Boston Brahmin.

jody said...

if this actually worked, why don't people just do this in every country? why have months long, years long civil wars?

just get a couple guys to charge the capital on foot and the president will run away. right?

these ukrainian rioters should probably count their lucky stars. to me, it seems like the least likely turn of events EVER.

Anonymous said...

"White tribalism is a direct result of the ethnocentric conception of a nation based on bloodlines. The tendency of European nations to fragment is a result of this flaw in European thinking on what constitutes a "nation."

It's not a flaw. It's a fundamental rule of biology. It's in your interests that the people who have power over you are as related to you as possible.

.

"What is interesting to me about the alt-right is the hatred of elites"

Straw man. We have a malign and hostile elite who are also completely incompetent except when it comes to self-enrichment and nepotism.

.

"The Ukrainian Nationalists vs. the Putin Worshippers."

Or to put it more honestly: the neocons and their puppets vs Putin and his puppets.

A general rule of thumb for anyone who finds this stuff boring: always side against the neocons. You'll be right nine times out of ten.

Harry Baldwin said...

How would America react if protesters stormed gov't buildings after an elected official was voted into office?

Yes, isn't it great how our government always counsels foreign governments in the process of being overthrown not to respond with force, yet the US Army trains to respond to an uprising by Tea Party terrorists?

Responding to a revolution with sufficient force has so far worked out pretty well for Assad.

Anonymous said...

"Straw man. We have a malign and hostile elite who are also completely incompetent except when it comes to self-enrichment and nepotism."

Are they completely incompetent? Most of us live pretty well, by both contemporary standards and historical ones. They're certainly malign, and things are certainly getting worse, not better. But our elites seem to be doing a good job of managing the period of relative comfort before excrement hits the rotating blades.

Anonymous said...

"Are they completely incompetent?"

Depends.

If the aim was to takeover, loot and leave the US for the next tallest poppy then no - they would be very competent.

If the aim was to take over and remain as an elite living off the cream of a high-functioning country then yes - spectacularly incompetent.

It's like Iraq. If the aim was to produce a stable, functioning country that wasn't a threat to Israel then they're incompetent.

If the aim was to create so much chaos and internal conflict that it didn't matter if they were hostile to Israel or not then they're competent.

So it all all depends but taking their stated aims at face value they are totally incompetent.

Simon in London said...

Anonymous Blogosaurus said...
>>How would America react if protesters stormed gov't buildings after an elected official was voted into office?<<

Obviously the US left-media would be cheering on the police as they gunned down Tea Party protesters, while they would probably support Occupy Wall Street protesters at least to the extent of condemning police violence. I think though in the latter case they would be concerned about the far left (classical Marxist Left) taking power in a violent coup, knowing that the real Left is not always kind to Left-Liberals (cultural Marxist Left). They'd want to ensure that their own guys took power.

Anonymous said...

"A general rule of thumb for anyone who finds this stuff boring: always side against the neocons. You'll be right nine times out of ten."

Yes. In all the conflicts that I've been able to research the neocons were the bad guys. I don't have an unlimited amount of time, so I can't research every issue. Assuming that the bad guys in any conflict are the ones supported by the neocons and the NYT (very little difference) seems like a good rule of thumb to me.

Rohan Swee said...

Are they completely incompetent? Most of us live pretty well, by both contemporary standards and historical ones. They're certainly malign, and things are certainly getting worse, not better. But our elites seem to be doing a good job of managing the period of relative comfort before excrement hits the rotating blades.

"Competent": foreseeing and preventing the stuff that results in the shit hitting the fan.

"Not completely incompetent": Used to describe an incompetent elite in the period before the shit hits the fan.

Anonymous said...

The neocons are only one segment of the elite. It's not as if they run all aspects of foreign and domestic policy down to the lowest level. There are other competing factions. The U.S. is also being slowly suffocated by bureaucratic mission creep.

Col. Reb Sez said...

Shines the name, shines the name of Rodger Young.

Mr. Anon said...

How come the government didn't call out the Army? Who is in the army? Is the army made up mostly of ethnic Ukrainians or ethnic Russians, easterners, or westerners? Anyone have any idea?

countenance said...

The second revolution (or "revolution") is what will tell the tale and write a lot of history.

USA: The first revolution was 1776, the second was 1861.

France: The first was 1789, the second was Napoleon.

Russia: The first was the toppling of the Czar, the second later in 1917 was the successful rise of the Bolsheviks.

Egypt: The first was toppling Mubarak, the second was toppling Morsi.

Ukraine: The first was toppling Yanukovych, the second will be...

Hacienda said...

It's really all about are you willing to please your grandmothers or are you willing to break away.

Grandmothers dominate American universities.

no one said...

It's remarkable how Steve has been so objective and neutral about the Ukraine v. Russia Big Important Revolution For Make Benefit Nationalism--you don't get the sense he's flacking for one side at all. Those New York neocon nogoodniks always hyping some meaningless desert tiff with zero American national interest at stake -- on the back of corny jingoist propaganda ginned up by scrawny 120-pound weaklings who should find a football team to root for, if they weren't such weaklings -- could learn a lot from Sailer's dispassionate and measured pronouncements on internecine Slavic struggle against the backdrop of hella rioting n' stuff, transpiring in that ancient region with which he's so exquisitely acquainted, not just via decades of academic research but as a leading duolingual Russokrainian dramatist whose avant-garde plays have been staged regularly from Lviv to Dnepropetrovsk. Responsible citizenists about 5,000 miles away can only overlook his discerning blogonalysis at their own peril. Guy's practically the new Arnold Toynbee.

Steve Sailer said...

Hey, I'm just trying to figure out if Slavs speak with deeper voices first.

neil craig said...

I continue to doubt if most the police who opened fire were armed with loaded weapons. You can't charge large numbers of armed men shooting at you - WW1 and Rorkes Drift proved that.

I think it is a replay of the "Slovenian War of Independence" where the police were disarmed and not all of the rioters were.