EDITOR’S NOTE: Given the events that continue to unfold in the Ukraine, placing the events in context becomes very important. I am republishing this article by William Blum (originally published Sept. 10, 2013) as it takes on even greater significance at this juncture.
[Map of NATO’s (sic US) missile defense shield. Courtesy BBC]
One of the reactions of the United States to Russia granting asylum to Edward Snowden was reported thus: “There was a blistering response on Capitol Hill and calls for retaliatory measures certain to infuriate the Kremlin. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), long one of the Senate’s leading critics of Moscow, blasted the asylum decision as ‘a slap in the face of all Americans’ and called on the administration to turn up the pressure on Moscow on a variety of fronts, including a renewed push for NATO expansion and new missile-defense programs in Europe.”
But we’ve long been told that NATO expansion and its missiles in Europe have nothing to do with Russia. And Russia has been told the same, much to Moscow’s continuous skepticism. “Look,” said Russian president Vladimir Putin about NATO in 2001, “this is a military organization. It’s moving towards our border. Why?” He subsequently described NATO as “the stinking corpse of the cold war.”
We’ve been told repeatedly by the US government that the missiles are for protection against an Iranian attack. Is it (choke) possible that the Bush and Obama administrations have been (gasp) lying to us?
- Washington Post, July 31, 2013
- Associated Press, June 16, 2001
- Time magazine, December 2007
William Blum is an author, historian, and renowned critic of U.S. foreign policy. He is the author of numerous books, including “Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II” and “Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower”. He is also a Contributing Editor of Cyrano’s Journal.