Here are 12 reasons to skip such events in favor of supporting actual peace. . .
Lori Branch, an Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of Iowa, announced on Public Orthodoxy a “peace” demonstration coming up on the Sunday of the Myrrh-bearing Women:
On Pascha, a small pan-Orthodox group of Christians in Iowa City decided to change this by launching GOLD: the Global Orthodox Laypeople’s Demonstration Against the War in Ukraine. We call our Orthodox family worldwide to join together on Sunday, May 8, 2022 to pray and witness for the gospel of peace (Ephesians 6:15) against the war in Ukraine and hierarchs who have sanctioned it. Act now and plan a demonstration: contact a friend or two (Matthew 18:20), involve your children, designate one hour to meet together in front of your church, and spread the word on email and social media. Carry icons, signs, flowers, and flags, speak your conscience, and pray for peace in Ukraine. Post pictures and video to social media and to our Facebook group. Let our brothers and sisters around the world, from hierarchs to laypeople, in Russia and Ukraine and elsewhere, hear our testimony: Orthodox Christianity cannot be used to endorse this war. If the war continues, we will plan a second demonstration for Pentecost.
While Lori may not intend her demonstration to be such, it is actually a pro-war protest that all Christians, particularly Orthodox ones, should avoid. Here are 12 reasons to skip such events in favor of supporting actual peace.
1. You can’t effectively protest against Russia and the Russian Church on American Soil
Lori’s group will be American citizens on American soil holding a protest in English. It is impossible to direct something like that against a foreign nation and a foreign church. The Russians don’t care what American Orthodox Christians think or say. It is the equivalent of Iranians demonstrating in Teheran against US sanctions. What Iranians protest about in their own country is of no importance to the American government.
A protest event organized by Americans on American soil is solely capable, at best, of possibly influencing US government policy and the opinions of American Christians. The Ukrainian policy of the US government, and its allies, has nothing to do with peace in Ukraine. By protesting against Russia in the US, you are protesting in favor of a continuation of this war and the death it brings. Western influence in Kiev is preventing peace negotiations from succeeding. If you want to end the fighting and save Ukrainian lives, then hold signs protesting Western policies and not just condemning Russia. We must put our own house in order.
2. The Western Goal is to fight to the last Ukrainian
The American goals in Ukraine are simple, brutal, and unconcerned with the welfare of the Ukrainian people. The West wants the war to last as long as possible to bleed Russia both economically and militarily. A continuation of the war means more Russian losses of troops and equipment on the battlefield. As long as the war continues, there is justification for the continuation of economic sanctions. It is the hope of the Western powers that sanctions and war losses will lessen Russia’s capability to compete with the US militarily, and may weaken or even bring down the Putin regime.
Here was what Representative Jim Crow of Colorado said during the recent Congressional delegation to Ukraine:
Rep. Jason Crow, a Democrat from Colorado, a veteran and a member of the House intelligence and armed services committee, said he came to Ukraine with three areas of focus: “Weapons, weapons and weapons.”
“We have to make sure the Ukrainians have what they need to win. What we have seen in the last two months is their ferocity, their intense pride, their ability to fight and their ability to win if they have the support to do so.”
“The United States of America is in this to win, and we will stand with Ukraine until victory is won,” he added.
Weapons, weapons, weapons… Not much Gospel of peace in that. The leadership of the West is quite clear. This is all about us, not the Ukrainians. In Western thinking, there is no possibility of a negotiated settlement to spare Ukrainian lives and infrastructure. This is about military victory only. Nothing less than complete humiliation of Russia will suffice. For the West, this is an epic battle of good vs. evil fought with Ukrainian blood until the last Ukrainian.
Western funding to Ukraine is the lifeblood of this war. The US has approved more than $17 billion in aid so far, and now proposes the incredible allocation of $33 billion more. Like everything about this war, the money isn’t really for the Ukrainians. It is really for Western elites who see this astronomical level of funding as an unprecedented profit opportunity. For the Ukrainians, it just means more death.
Let’s put $33 billion dollars into perspective. Ukraine in 2021, utilizing quite generous foreign aid, spent $5.2 billion dollars on Defense. $20 billion dollars is 4x its most recent annual Defense budget. How can the poorest country in Europe manage to absorb that level of military aid in a single year? In 2020, the GDP of Ukraine was $155.58 billion. So in addition to the billions of dollars in aid already provided, the US plans to hand Ukraine an additional almost 8% of its entire, prewar annual GDP over the next 5 months for humanitarian and economic assistance?
Where do you think all that money is going to go? The military “aid” will largely go to Western military contractors to buy weapons and supplies that will make no difference in this war. It takes time to manufacture new equipment, deliver it, and train troops to effectively use it. Ukraine is running out of soldiers, territory, and time. Military aid will either never arrive, because the Russians will destroy it on the ground, or it will arrive way too late to make any difference. Even if the most fabulous weapons in the world were delivered to the Ukrainian front lines right now, is their army intact enough to use them?
On the other hand, Western weapons makers will earn billions. Is that a fair trade off – Ukrainian lives for the sake of Western blood money? If you go to a pro-war rally, you are not protesting to help the Ukrainians. You are protesting to help the profits of Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, and all the other war-mongering, corporate welfare whores who traffic in death and destruction. Would Jesus endorse that?
Ukraine is one of the most corrupt nations on Earth. So, of course we are about to drop billions in lootable dollars into the place. How much of this aid, do you think, will reach the average Ukrainian? If you guess “none”, then you shouldn’t be too far off. This aid is going to be siphoned off at every level. Nothing will reach the average people. The Hunter Bidens and Ukrainian oligarchs of the world are already lining up for their paydays. Westerners have been looting Ukraine since the early 90’s. The current feeding frenzy will make previous scandals look small by comparison.
This is all just the beginning. The Western elite wants this war to go on for years to come – until “victory” as they have said. When the Ukrainian military collapses, the plan is to prop up an insurgency and just keep the fighting going. Ukraine will be the new “War on Terror”. A never-ending cornucopia of military spending and development assistance that will make the already rich even richer, while making lots of Ukrainians very, very dead. Would Jesus support that? If you want to save lives, pray for God’s mercy while protesting against Western policies that exploit the lives of Ukrainians to serve the schemes of sociopathic elites.
3. You are alienating millions over the impact of sanctions on the poor and the middle class
Americans and Europeans are beginning to face real hardships as result of the war sanctions. Inflation is running rampant. Even President Joe Biden’s administration openly talks of food and fuel shortages. American cities look like disaster zones with high crime and record levels of homelessness. Immigration continues unchecked, putting more stress on already overburdened, dysfunctional social safety nets. Rents are unaffordable. Home prices are high, but likely to tank as interest rates rise to combat inflation. Despite a drop in price, high interest rates will continue to put homes out of reach for many families. Recession is inevitable, so look for the economic situation to only worsen as this war continues. In this increasingly desperate situation, Americans have noticed the $33 billion dollars for Ukraine. They aren’t happy.
$33 Billion more to Ukraine and this subway stop is in Philly.
— ➐ Z (@Zinnsgh0st) April 30, 2022
In her article about her pro-war rally, Lori is very concerned about the suffering of the Ukrainians:
we may tell ourselves we can’t do anything meaningful or that more important duties call us—loyalty to Church hierarchs perhaps, some who have blessed the invasion and others who remain silent about it. Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters, meanwhile, remain bleeding by the wayside.
Like most doctrinaire liberals, Lori does not evidence nearly as much concern about the hundreds of millions of people on the planet who are suffering, and will soon suffer even more, because of war sanctions. Only the Ukrainians matter, not the other victims of Western policies. For educated liberals, the situation in Ukraine is of the utmost importance. For them, this is the Olympics of virtue signaling. It makes triple-masking alone in a car after your 4th booster seem trivial by comparison. The average American, however, has a different take. For them, the effects of this war on their lives are wildly out of proportion to its importance. This is a war over control of territory an average American cannot find on a map. This is not our fight.
Struggling Americans want their own $33 billion dollars to feed their kids and take care of their communities. Not only won’t they get it, but they’ll have to watch as folks like Lori wrap Jesus in a Ukrainian flag while protesting in support of the very sanctions policies ruining all our lives.
4. You are excusing NATO’s provocations and enabling more war around the world
Swiss military intelligence officer Jacques Baud has worked in the Ukraine and has written extensively about the causes and conduct of the current war. Read all of his writings here. Lengthy excerpt below dealing with how NATO provoked this war:
In 2014, during the Maidan revolution in Kiev, I was in NATO in Brussels. I noticed that people didn’t assess the situation as it was, but as they wished it would be. This is exactly what Sun Tzu describes as the first step towards failure. In fact, it appeared clear to me that nobody in NATO had the slightest interest in Ukraine. The main goal was to destabilize Russia.
Military documents found in Ukrainian headquarters in the south of the country confirm that the Ukraine was preparing to attack the Donbass; and that the firing observed by OSCE observers as early as February 16 heralded an imminent outbreak in days or weeks.
This allows us to deduce that the American and European political leaders deliberately pushed the Ukraine into a conflict that they knew was lost in advance—for the sole purpose of dealing a political blow to Russia.
In fact, as early as February 16, Joe Biden knew that the Ukrainians had begun shelling the civilian population of Donbass, putting Vladimir Putin in front of a difficult choice: to help Donbass militarily and create an international problem, or to stand by and watch the Russian-speaking people of Donbass being crushed.
On that day, he agreed to the request of the Duma and recognized the independence of the two Donbass Republics and, at the same time, he signed friendship and assistance treaties with them.
The Ukrainian artillery bombardment of the Donbass population continued, and, on 23 February, the two Republics asked for military assistance from Russia. On 24 February, Vladimir Putin invoked Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, which provides for mutual military assistance in the framework of a defensive alliance.
In order to make the Russian intervention totally illegal in the eyes of the public we deliberately hid the fact that the war actually started on February 16. The Ukrainian army was preparing to attack the Donbass as early as 2021, as some Russian and European intelligence services were well aware. Jurists will judge.
In his speech of February 24, Vladimir Putin stated the two objectives of his operation: “demilitarize” and “denazify” the Ukraine. So, it is not a question of taking over the Ukraine, nor even, presumably, of occupying it; and certainly not of destroying it.
Many Western commentators were surprised that the Russians continued to seek a negotiated solution while conducting military operations. The explanation lies in the Russian strategic outlook since the Soviet era. For the West, war begins when politics ends. However, the Russian approach follows a Clausewitzian inspiration: war is the continuity of politics and one can move fluidly from one to the other, even during combat. This allows one to create pressure on the adversary and push him to negotiate.
The dramatic developments we are witnessing today have causes that we knew about but refused to see:
- on the strategic level, the expansion of NATO (which we have not dealt with here);
- on the political level, the Western refusal to implement the Minsk Agreements;
- and operationally, the continuous and repeated attacks on the civilian population of the Donbass over the past years and the dramatic increase in late February 2022.
In other words, we can naturally deplore and condemn the Russian attack. But WE (that is: the United States, France and the European Union in the lead) have created the conditions for a conflict to break out. We show compassion for the Ukrainian people and the two million refugees. That is fine. But if we had had a modicum of compassion for the same number of refugees from the Ukrainian populations of Donbass massacred by their own government and who sought refuge in Russia for eight years, none of this would probably have happened.
Clearly, this conflict has led us into hysteria. Sanctions seem to have become the preferred tool of our foreign policies. If we had insisted that Ukraine abide by the Minsk Agreements, which we had negotiated and endorsed, none of this would have happened. Vladimir Putin’s condemnation is also ours. There is no point in whining afterwards—we should have acted earlier. However, neither Emmanuel Macron (as guarantor and member of the UN Security Council), nor Olaf Scholz, nor Volodymyr Zelensky have respected their commitments. In the end, the real defeat is that of those who have no voice.
The European Union was unable to promote the implementation of the Minsk agreements—on the contrary, it did not react when Ukraine was bombing its own population in the Donbass. Had it done so, Vladimir Putin would not have needed to react. Absent from the diplomatic phase, the EU distinguished itself by fueling the conflict. On February 27, the Ukrainian government agreed to enter into negotiations with Russia. But a few hours later, the European Union voted a budget of 450 million euros to supply arms to the Ukraine, adding fuel to the fire. From then on, the Ukrainians felt that they did not need to reach an agreement. The resistance of the Azov militia in Mariupol even led to a boost of 500 million euros for weapons.
The lesson to be learned from this conflict is our sense of variable geometric humanity. If we cared so much about peace and the Ukraine, why didn’t we encourage the Ukraine to respect the agreements it had signed and that the members of the Security Council had approved?
As Goethe said: “The greater the light, the darker the shadow.” The more the sanctions against Russia are disproportionate, the more the cases where we have done nothing highlight our racism and servility. Why have no Western politicians reacted to the strikes against the civilian population of Donbass for eight years?
All of the preceding was written by a Swiss intelligence veteran who worked on the ground in Ukraine for the West. The picture he paints is very different from the normal, Western narrative, is it not? At a “pro Ukrainian” protest in America, you will hear that Ukraine was peaceful. You will hear that Russia attacked without provocation. You will hear that the coup in 2014 was not orchestrated by the US and the West. You will hear it said that the continuous attacks on civilians in the Donbass from 2014 to 2022 are just Russian “disinformation”.
In other words, you will hear nothing but lies. The West wanted this war, and the West provoked this war. If you want to protest this war, then protest against Western meddling in the affairs of other nations. If you want to protest this war, then tell the truth about how and why it began. You won’t be popular, because few want to see the truth as it is, but at least you will be blameless before God.
5. You are downplaying the risk of nuclear war
Many supporters of the war in Ukraine are climate change extremists who want to restructure society to “save the planet”. This group neatly overlaps with COVIDians who supported lockdowns, masking toddlers, forced vaccinations, etc. to “save lives”. You would think such a group would also be highly concerned about nuclear war, as that would destroy the planet and kill billions. Unfortunately, you would be wrong as these people seem remarkably blasé about it.
Any pro-war protest will feature calls for direct NATO military involvement in operations against the Russian military. The need to “do something” is so great, that war hawks are willing to risk direct conflict between nuclear-armed nations. If you think this war upsets Jesus, imagine how He would feel about a nuclear holocaust? Given the talk among Western leaders of “victory” on the battlefield and regime change in Moscow, do you have any idea how easily this war could lead to Armageddon?
Stop. Take a deep breath. Pray for peace, and demand negotiations to end this war. The US and NATO are preventing the Ukrainians from negotiating a way out of this. That must stop before we all get vaporized. If you want peace, demand Western governments cease their support for this dangerous war.
6. You become a propaganda accessory for the War Hawks
If you hold yourself out as an Orthodox Christian at a pro-war rally, you will be used as a tool of Western propaganda. The headlines will read, “Russian Invasion Splits Orthodox World” or “Orthodox Christians Condemn Russian Invasion” or “Orthodox Christians Around World Support Ukraine’s Fight Against Russia” or others along those lines. You may have showed up to endorse peace, but your protest will be used to justify continuing the war. You will not save lives. You will cost them. Don’t give them your support. Don’t let them use you as a pawn in their bloody game.
Reject the war. Embrace peace.
7. You endorse Western propaganda
America has been lying itself into war, and about its wars, for most of its history. Remember the North Vietnamese attack on our ships in the Gulf of Tonkin? Iraq’s WMD? Mexico’s unprovoked attack on the US border that cost it 1/2 its territory? Libya and the “rape camps”? How about the sinking of the U.S.S. Maine that was blamed on the Spanish?
The “Information War” in Ukraine is really different in only one, but quite glaring, way. This time around, even the people creating the propaganda admit its fake. NBC News, of all places, broke the story that, “multiple US officials acknowledged that the US has used information as a weapon even when confidence in the accuracy of the information wasn’t high. Sometimes it has used low-confidence intelligence for deterrent effect…” They know they are lying. You know they are lying, because they told you they are lying. Plus most of the fake stories blow up fairly rapidly, often conclusively debunked in mere hours. But none of that matters. Decent people keep repeating obvious propaganda as if it were the Gospel. That level of propaganda acceptance among the masses is truly new, extraordinary, and utterly terrifying.
All Ukrainian war propaganda has one goal – to keep the war going. Is it a tale of heroic Ukrainian resistance? Then you must fund the Ukrainian military because they have a real chance to beat the Russians! Plus, you can’t abandon those brave men, women, LGBTQ activists, etc. in the face of Russian aggression! If you are a Ukrainian, hold on! You can win this! Even if winning means living in a ruined country.
In reality, the Ukrainian military is collapsing. (Click here for a great analysis of what is really happening to regular Ukrainian soldiers in the fight with Russia.) No more Ukrainian men should die as supporting characters in Western fairy tales.
Are you treated to tales of Russian atrocities? Then we must vote more funding for the war! Putin must be held accountable for his crimes. This is a genocide. Or a pending genocide. Or a potential genocide. Whatever, something really bad. The stakes for Ukraine are existential, so peace is impossible with the evil Russians. Ukrainians must fight to the last man. The only way to stop the rapes / mass shootings / puppy murders is to send exorbitantly expensive weapons systems to an army that is already falling apart in the field. Many of the tales of Russian “atrocities” have already been debunked, but let us grant that some of them may be true. Bad things happen in war. Which is more likely to protect innocent Ukrainian life – ending the war or continuing the war?
Repeating, endorsing, and promoting Western propaganda will not defeat Russia. It will not save Ukrainian lives. It will not stop Russian “atrocities”. Only peace can.
8. You excuse Nazism
Lori wrote this in her article, “Worse yet, radical all-anonymous Orthodox websites parrot Russian state propaganda about Ukrainian “fascism,” in the face of all fact-checking to the contrary.” It was nice of Lori to link to our site. Using a link to factcheck.org as a source to objectively “debunk” anything gave us all a chuckle.
Prior to the current war, Western media had no trouble acknowledging the Nazi problem in Ukraine.
Supporters of the war in Ukraine have two choices – deny the existence of fascist elements, or claim the fascist elements are not important. Lori seems to be adopting the first option, while the factcheck.org article went for the second. Neither approach really works. The existence of Nazis in Ukraine is too well-known to deny. Further, the Nazis are vital to the Kiev government. The fascist, right-wing militias are an essential part of the military and security structure of the Ukrainian state. Here is another quote from Swiss intelligence officer Baud:
So, to compensate for the lack of soldiers, the Ukrainian government resorted to paramilitary militias. They are essentially composed of foreign mercenaries, often extreme right-wing militants. In 2020, they constituted about 40 percent of the Ukrainian forces and numbered about 102,000 men, according to Reuters. They were armed, financed and trained by the United States, Great Britain, Canada and France. There were more than 19 nationalities—including Swiss.
Western countries have thus clearly created and supported Ukrainian far-right militias. In October 2021, the Jerusalem Post sounded the alarm by denouncing the Centuria project. These militias had been operating in the Donbass since 2014, with Western support. Even if one can argue about the term “Nazi,” the fact remains that these militias are violent, convey a nauseating ideology and are virulently anti-Semitic. Their anti-Semitism is more cultural than political, which is why the term “Nazi” is not really appropriate. Their hatred of the Jew stems from the great famines of the 1920s and 1930s in the Ukraine, resulting from Stalin’s confiscation of crops to finance the modernization of the Red Army. This genocide—known in the Ukraine as the Holodomor—was perpetrated by the NKVD (the forerunner of the KGB), whose upper echelons of leadership were mainly composed of Jews. This is why, today, Ukrainian extremists are asking Israel to apologize for the crimes of communism, as the Jerusalem Post notes. This is a far cry from Vladimir Putin’s “rewriting of history.”
We can argue whether the term “Nazi” is appropriate, but since the ultranationalist Ukrainians embrace that term openly, who are we to argue with their self-definition? Now some confusion often pops up. If the Ukrainian Nazis are virulently anti-Semitic, how can they have a president, Zelensky, with Jewish heritage?
While Western media deploys Volodymyr Zelensky’s Jewish heritage to refute accusations of Nazi influence in Ukraine, the president has ceded to neo-Nazi forces and now depends on them as front line fighters.
This February 24, when Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into Ukrainian territory on a stated mission to “demilitarize and denazify” the country, US media embarked on a mission of its own: to deny the power of neo-Nazi paramilitaries over the country’s military and political sphere. As the US government-funded National Public Radio insisted, “Putin’s language [about denazification] is offensive and factually wrong."
In its bid to deflect from the influence of Nazism in contemporary Ukraine, US media has found its most effective PR tool in the figure of Zelensky, a former TV star and comedian from a Jewish background. It is a role the actor-turned-politician has eagerly assumed.
But as we will see, Zelensky has not only ceded ground to the neo-Nazis in his midst, he has entrusted them with a front line role in his country’s war against pro-Russian and Russian forces.
The president’s Jewishness as Western media PR device
Hours before President Putin’s February 24 speech declaring denazification as the goal of Russian operations, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky “asked how a people who lost eight million of its citizens fighting Nazis could support Nazism,” according to the BBC.
Raised in a non-religious Jewish family in the Soviet Union during the 1980’s, Zelensky has downplayed his heritage in the past. “The fact that I am Jewish barely makes 20 in my long list of faults,” he joked during a 2019 interview in which he declined to go into further detail about his religious background.
Behind the corporate media spin lies the complex and increasingly close relationship Zelensky’s administration has enjoyed with the neo-Nazi forces invested with key military and political posts by the Ukrainian state, and the power these open fascists have enjoyed since Washington installed a Western-aligned regime through a coup in 2014.
In fact, Zelensky’s top financial backer, the Ukrainian Jewish oligarch Igor Kolomoisky, has been a key benefactor of the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion and other extremists militias.
These may not be your grandfather’s Nazis, but that doesn’t make them any less evil. There is no acceptable threshold for Nazism in terms of US taxpayer support. Do not whitewash, excuse, or support the Ukrainian Nazis. Jesus would not approve if you did.
9. You come across as horribly racist
Noami Wolf called out the racism that seems inherent in our obsessing over the War in Ukraine, while ignoring all the other conflicts happening around the world:
Overnight, a new concern, a new moral signifier, was presented, wholly formed: and it involved a conflict area half a world away. Now, war is always bad and invasions are always cruel; but I could not help noticing that there are wars, refugees, invasions and conflict areas around the world, and that only this one — this one one — demanded the attentions of my irksomely cultish and uncritical former tribe. I could not help noticing that the dozens of devastated conflict areas and war zones being totally ignored by the ex-Brooklynites — from Ethiopia, where there have been 50,000 deaths since September, to Sri Lanka, with its catastrophic food shortages, to Mexico’s drug war, which has led to 300,000 deaths, to Afghanistan, where women are being rounded up and people are being shot in the street — do not involve white people who look like the ex-Brooklynites; and for various other reasons, are not attracting a lot of television cameras.
Did you ever take to the streets with icons and crosses to support the lives of people who weren’t lily-white Europeans? No? Why not? Is our obsession with Ukraine a product of racism, or because Western liberals do whatever the government and corporate-controlled media tell them? Probably mostly the latter, though it is hard to convince the non-European world that racism plays no role in our hypocrisy.
In her article, Lori exhibited how casually racist Western liberals can really be. Lori implied that Patriarchates that are not on-board with condemning Russia are just grifters being funded by Russian aid money. This includes several Patriarchates composed of mostly non-white Orthodox Christians:
Others who would protest have been instructed by their bishops to remain silent, while patriarchs in regions dependent on Russian aid continue to refrain from calling out Patriarch Kirill’s complicity in the war.
Antioch and Jerusalem are mostly Arab patriarchates who do not agree with condemning Russia. Are they only acting out of greed for Russian money? Is corruption a feature of non-white Orthodoxy? Surprisingly for Western liberals, the opinion of these Orthodox bishops about the War in Ukraine closely mirrors that of the “Global South” in general. Archbishop Theodosios, one of the most influential bishops of the Jerusalem Patriarchate, provided this assessment of the war:
“The political system in the West is crying over Ukraine while it’s the one that created this crisis,” the Archbishop said. “Why do they mourn the victims of Ukraine but not those of the wars they started in various other places?” he asks. “America and its allies destroyed Iraq and committed war crimes against its people, and we are witnessing what is happening in Syria and all the devastations of wars they created in the region,” His Eminence said strongly. “These international double standards in our world clearly show the deep levels of the state of immorality and lack of human values many western regimes have reached,” the Jerusalem hierarch said.
Does he seem like a bought and paid-for Russian asset? Or is he a holy bishop telling truths to power? Truths smug, Western liberals don’t want to hear?
Since WWII, the United States and its allies have killed an estimated 20 – 30 million people around the globe in military “interventions.” The US reserves the right to attack anyone, anywhere, and any time of its own choosing. The “rules-based international order” does nothing to restrain the US from bombing, attacking, and occupying defenseless nations at will. Many Global South nations join Archbishop Theodosios in seeing the West as a rogue empire, funding and participating in wars all over the globe with disastrous consequences. Nor is Russia the West’s only economic target. Almost 25% of the world’s population lives under some form of American economic sanctions.
The West is demanding that developing nations join the sanctions against Russia, in direct contravention of their own economic interests. The West expects countries full of poor people to make themselves even poorer by enforcing sanctions that will not stop the war. No wonder they are not interested. No wonder anti-Western hatred is so endemic in many places around the world.
And no, “they” don’t hate us for our “freedom”. Despite liberal self-perception, the US leads a vicious coalition of Western powers seeking global domination for its ruling billionaires. The rest of the world sees us more clearly than we see ourselves. Nothing illustrates Western disregard for common decency more than the way we conduct our many wars when we fight them. The Western way of war is to employ overwhelming force. Even as we decry Russian actions as “genocide”, we conveniently ignore the many nations whose cities we have obliterated.
This is what Kiev looks like because Ukraine is at war with Russia, which is fighting in a restrained fashion to prevent unnecessary loss of life and property. Kiev is safe enough for American Congressional leaders to enter publicly and meet with Zelensky.
This is how Kiev would look if Ukraine had the misfortune of fighting the US and its allies:
You may not want to see the differences here, but the rest of the world absolutely does. To the non-Western world, we look like racist hypocrites of the highest order.
10. You stand for censorship at home and abroad
Censorship is accelerating at home and throughout the West. As we all know, the US government is founding its own “Ministry of Truth” in the Department of Homeland Security. The new board will be instrumental in framing the approved “narrative”. Its pronouncements will be the yardstick against which all other information is measured. A single source of “truth” will allow private companies to more effectively suppress “disinformation” in a coordinated manner. If you are guilty of “disinformation”, then PayPal, social media, Amazon Web Services, your bank, etc. can freeze your money, de-platform you, and maybe even eliminate your ability to work at all.
Lori and her protest, of course, will be totally safe. They are using Jesus to support the government narrative. To get at Putin, Western liberals / progressives are willing to eliminate free speech. The longer this war drags on, the worse the assault on our liberties will become. Anyone who dissents or criticizes the government will be increasingly at risk.
The war on freedom is not confined to the US and the West. Western leaders make much of Ukraine being the “frontline of defense of freedom” against Russian “tyranny”. This is completely untrue. Using US tax dollars, Ukraine has arrested government opponents, closed opposition media, set controls on the media allowed to operate, and arrested journalists. Ukraine has now graduated to arresting people for their social media posts.
Ukraine bragging about arresting people for their social media posts. American media celebrates this. Now, see the Minister Against Misinformation, and you get where this is going. Anyone praising Ukraine should be embarrassed. https://t.co/b3zmy7JpV9
— Robert Barnes (@barnes_law) May 1, 2022
Who would Jesus censor? End the war while we have any freedoms left.
11. You are standing with the worst people in Orthodoxy
This is a quote from A DECLARATION ON THE “RUSSIAN WORLD” (RUSSKII MIR) TEACHING
Against this “Russian world” (so the teaching goes) stands the corrupt West, led by the United States and Western European nations, which has capitulated to “liberalism”, “globalization”, “Christianophobia”, “homosexual rights” promoted in gay parades, and “militant secularism”.
The declaration, like much of the writing from progressive “Orthodox”, puts issues with late-stage Western liberalism in quotes. What are they trying to say when the authors do that? Are they trying to say that these things are not features of the contemporary West? Are they saying these features are there, but not important? Or do they actually support liberalism, globalization, militant secularism, Christianophobia, and homosexual rights, but don’t want to say so clearly?
Based on long association with academic Orthodoxy in the West, it’s definitely the last option. Support for the War in Ukraine correlates highly with more commitment to the Gospel of Globalization than to the real one. If you stand with these people, you stand for principles that are anti-Christian.
12. You are supporting lies about the Russian Orthodox Church
Lori says, “Orthodox Christianity cannot be used to endorse this war.” That gives the impression someone has tried to do just that. No one has. This war is a secular war for secular aims, and should be ended as quickly as possible. We have already discussed the lack of religious background for this war and the intentional misrepresentation of Patriarch Kirill’s teachings. View those articles here, here, and here.
Don’t be like Lori and spread false accusations against Orthodox hierarchs. In fact, don’t be like Lori and her friends at all – support peace, not war. A true commitment to peace means stopping the Western nations from using Ukrainian lives as instruments of war against Russia.
Nicholas – member of the Western Rite Vicariate, a part of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese in America
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