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To see a list of previous articles, enter “Ukraine” in the Search Box on the upper right, and you will see a list in chronological order.
To understand the broad context within which current developments in Ukraine should be considered,see
“Ukraine War, October 26, 2022: The context for analysis of current developments; The “dirty bomb” as a Russian propaganda distraction from current war crimes,” The Trenchant Observer, October 26, 2022.
1) Clemens Wergin, “Putins neue Doktrin – ein Katalog der Paranoia in 76 Punkten,” Die Welt, den 2. April 2023;
2) Clemens Wergin, “Putin’s new doctrine – a catalogue of paranoia in 76 points,” Die Welt, April 2, 2023;
3) Frank Aischmann (Berlin für das ARD-Studio Moskau), “Der Westen als Feind, Russland als Opfer; Russland hat eine neue außenpolitische Doktrin verabschiedet, die den Westen zur “existenziellen” Bedrohung erklärt. Es gelte, die Dominanz der USA und anderer Staaten abzubauen – offenbar auch durch präventive Maßnahmen,” Tagesschau, den 31. März 2023 (18:39 Uhr);
4) Frank Aischmann (Berlin for the ARD studio Moscow), “The West as an enemy, Russia as a victim; Russia has adopted a new foreign policy doctrine that declares the West an “existential” threat. It is important to reduce the dominance of the USA and other states – apparently also through preventive measures.,” Tagesschau, March 31,2023 (6:39 pm);
5) Jean-Pierre Filiu, “Les Emirats dans le camp russe face à l’Ukraine; Les Emirats arabes unis assurent des transactions essentielles à l’offensive russe contre l’Ukraine, alors que Dubaï est devenue le sanctuaire des oligarques visés par les sanctions occidentales, Le Monde, le 2 avril 2023 (06h45, mise à jour à 08h23):
6) Jean-Pierre Filiu, “The Emirates in the Russian camp against Ukraine; The United Arab Emirates ensures transactions essential to the Russian offensive against Ukraine, while Dubai has become the sanctuary of the oligarchs targeted by Western sanctions, Le Monde, April 2, 2023 (6:45 a.m., updated at 8:23 a.m.);
Wergin points out that Russia now sees itself as a defender of the U.N. Charter:
Equally unabashed are the passages in which Russia sees itself as a guardian of international law and as a defender of the UN Charter – including Article 51, which enshrines the right to self-defense against external attacks. In fact, the attack on Ukraine is not only the most violent violation of the principles of the UN Charter on European soil since the Second World War, Moscow also fundamentally violates the Geneva Conventions, one of the most important foundations of international law, with its systematic war crimes.
Article 51 of the U.N. Charter provides’
Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.
Vladimir Putin went to law school, and likes to hear legal-sounding arguments, even if he has to make up facts to make them sound plausible.
Yet there is not an independent international lawyer on the planet who would assert Ukraine committed an “armed attack” on Russia before its invasion on February 24, 2023, or its earlier invasions of the Crimea and the Donbass in 2014.
Moreover, the right of self-defense is subject to the twin requirements of necessity and proportionality, neither which could be satisfied even in the wildest and most undesciplined imaginatio,
Aischmann zeroes in on an important aspect of the new strategy document: By characterizing the West’s actions toward Russia as an “existential threat” to Russia, Putin has dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s to bring the use of nuclear weapons into apparent compliance with Russia’s pre-existing nuclear doctrine. Only his “facts” are imaginary, and delusional.
In all likelihood, Putin is doing so only tonenhance (in his mind) the persuasiveness of his nuclear threats.
Aischmann also draws attention to the justtification for any action taken in anticipatory self-defense.
What a tragedy that such a brilliant legal mind was lost to the legal profession and put into the service of the KGB!
For a satirical yet telling portrait of Putin’s legal reasoning, see,
“Ukraine War, April 27, 2022 (II): SATIRE–Putin says, ‘If you try to interfere with this rape I’m carrying out, I’ll burn your house down’; Russia decries violation of its territorial integrity by Ukraine,” The Trenchant Observer, April 27, 2022.
Russia as the defender of the U.N. Charter? You would have to refer to Nineteen-eighty-four to decipher that Orwellian language.
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