Given how they are too post-modern for the conflict between good and evil,the New York Times doesn’t do well with moral clarity. Israel fighting HAMAS is too much for them. But here comes Ukraine’s Donbas region, with war full of no good guys, and voila– they get it!
LUHANSK, Ukraine — Every night, as darkness falls over Luhansk, the focus now of intense humanitarian concern and geopolitical intrigue, a cat-and-mouse artillery duel begins.
In a neighborhood of high-rise apartments, residents can readily identify the hollow pops of mortars as they echo among the buildings. After that, rebel fighters can be seen hastily dismantling the weapons and hauling them away.
An hour or so later, the Ukrainian military’s response comes: the whistle and boom of incoming artillery shells, fired from guns outside the city, in a fruitless attempt at silencing the rebel gunners.
You mean, it’s not Russian terrorists executing multiple large-scale false flag operations bombing Ukrainian cities? While Putin’s fingerprints are all over the whole separatist business and some of his special forces are fighting in Ukraine, let me assure you, as a person who reads both Russian and Ukrainian, and knows people in Eastern Ukraine, few in Ukraine* believe the fairytale that Russian terrorists are slaughtering loyal Ukrainians. And that it’s not a widespread opinion presents a problem for Kiev — the kind of problem that requires a radical solution. Many Donbas residents are so convinced that it’s Ukrainian armed forces shell their towns, that they flee to Russia en mass, while others move westward into Ukraine where they don’t register as refugees for the fear of being drafted into Ukrainian army, but busy themselves with defacing Ukrainian flags.
NYT collected the following sample of popular opinion in Luhansk:
Polina Ivanova, a resident of one ravaged area, was sympathetic to the rebel mortar crew. “Look how many civilians are dying,” she said. “They are trying to protect us, and they have nowhere else to fire from. We are surrounded.”
She stood on a stoop in the predawn with Ekaterina Vladimirova, a neighbor who had a different opinion. “Both sides don’t care about us,” Ms. Vladimirova said. “For them, it’s a game. One shoots that way, the other shoots this way, and simple people suffer.”
Oleg Romanov, 29, said he huddled in terror with his wife and 1-year-old son in an apartment while “it booms all night long, and plaster falls from the ceiling.” He then rises at 4 a.m. to take his place in a line for water, and make the rounds of stores to hunt for groceries.
“The rebels fire Grads and leave, and then, of course, the answer comes back to that spot,” he said. “The rebels are long gone by then, but people are still around.”
That’s a pretty representative spread.
The only thing NYT missed in their story is that the utilities in Luhansk, Slavyansk and other Eastern Ukrainian cities were turned off by Kiev. All in all, the paper of record should stop covering Israel and refocus on Ukraine, which they are infinitely more adept to cover.
It’s not just Ukrainians who question the official account. Human Rights Watch checked out what’s going on in Donbas, and came up with a report confirming the use of Grad rockets by Ukrainian Army. Yes, I know it’s HRW.