Trump is killing Ukrainians!

Ukrainians are dying, and it’s Donald Trump’s fault. That’s the message of an article in The Washington Post today by well-known columnist David Ignatius.

As I’m sure you all know, US president Donald Trump’s troubled relationship with Ukraine is the grounds on which his political enemies are seeking to impeach him. The basic charge is that Trump abused his office by making military aid to Ukraine conditional on the Ukrainian government investigating his Democratic Party rival Joe Biden. Ignatius, however, argues that Trump’s behaviour is worse than that. For by treating military aid ‘as a personal political tool’, Trump has been playing with peoples’ lives.

This, says Ignatius, is entirely typical of how Trump behaves. Again and again, he has displayed ‘fecklessness’ in his foreign policy by refusing to stand up for allies like ‘the Syrian Kurds, and the South Koreans, and America’s NATO partners in Europe’. The Russians are stepping into the void Trump has created, and ordinary people are suffering as a result. As Ignatius says, in Ukraine

a low-level conflict continues. Here are some details from recent OSCE cease-fire monitoring reports: On Oct. 5, a man and a woman died after a grenade exploded in their apartment in Kurakhove; on Oct. 24, a man was injured by shrapnel near Luhansk; on Nov. 1, a man was injured by shelling in Spartak.

As you watch the impeachment hearings, remember this basic fact: While Trump was playing politics on Ukraine, people who depended on U.S. military aid were getting killed and wounded.

The insinuation here is pretty clear: Trump is killing Ukrainians. But is this true?

In the first place, no concrete evidence has been produced by Ignatius or anyone else to show that what was apparently a very short delay in the provision of aid has had any impact on the military situation in eastern Ukraine. And second, the exact examples Ignatius provides are not quite what he makes them out to be. Indeed, on first reading them, they immediately struck me as a little fishy. So I looked them up on the website of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM). This is what the OSCE had to say about the first case Ignatius mentions – the grenade in government-controlled Kurakhove:

The SMM followed up on reports that a man and a woman died after a grenade exploded inside their apartment on the second floor of a six-storey apartment building in 22 Pivdennyi district in Kurakhove (government-controlled, 40km west of Donetsk), about 16km from the contact line. On 7 October, medical staff at the hospital morgue in Krasnohorivka (government-controlled, 21km west of Donetsk) told the SMM that the bodies of a man and a woman (in their forties) had been brought to the morgue in the afternoon of 5 October with fatal injuries from an explosive device. On 4 November, a police representative in Kurakhove confirmed that a couple had died as the result of a detonation of a grenade inside their apartment on 5 October, and that it had opened a criminal investigation.

It’s hard to tell exactly what happened here, but it obviously wasn’t a case of rebel shelling. It sounds more like some idiot playing around with a grenade in his apartment, though there could be other explanations. But one thing one can say for sure is that a slightly faster delivery of US military aid to Ukraine wouldn’t have done this couple any good.

So let’s move on to the second case on Ignatius’ list – a man injured by shrapnel near Luhansk on 24 October. Oddly, I couldn’t find this in the OSCE reports despite searching for the words ‘shrapnel’ and ‘Luhansk’. But it’s worth mentioning that Luhansk isn’t in government controlled territory, so if someone was injured by shrapnel there on 24 October, US military aid to Ukraine wouldn’t have done him or her any good either.

But although I couldn’t find this case, a search for ‘shrapnel’ in the OSCE reports for October did bring up three others, as follows:

  • ‘three firefighters (men, 34, 32, and 36 years old) injured by shelling in the Trudivski area of Donetsk city’s Petrovskyi district (non-governmentcontrolled, 15km south-west of Donetsk city centre) on 11 September.’
  • ‘On 4 October, the SMM saw a man (aged 37) in Staromykhailivka (non-governmentcontrolled, 15km west of Donetsk) with a small injury to his face who told the SMM that on the afternoon of 3 October, while he was in the backyard of his house at 9 Haharina Street (about 2.5km from the contact line) in Staromykhailivka, he heard shooting and started running towards his house. According to him, as he was entering the house, he heard a loud explosion, felt heat on his face, and realized he was injured.’
  • ‘The SMM followed up on reports of a man injured on 25 October due to an explosion at his house at 39 Komsomolska Street in Mineralne (non-government-controlled, 10km north-east of Donetsk), about 2.5km from the contact line. … The man told the SMM that, on the evening of 25 October, as he was about to exit his house, he heard a loud explosion, which injured him.’

Here we have three instances of shrapnel injuries reported by the OSCE in October. What do they have in common? The injuries were all suffered by people in non-government held territory. In other words, they were all almost certainly victims of shelling by government forces. Yet Ignatius tells us that these were ‘people who depended on U.S. military aid.’

WTF?!

And it gets worse, because we also have the final case Ignatius mentions – ‘a man injured by shelling in Spartak’. This is what the OSCE has to say about that:

  • ‘On 9 November, at the Donetsk Regional Trauma Hospital, the SMM saw a man (40 years old) with bandages on his left leg and right upper arm. He told the Mission that on the morning of 1 November he had been outside his house at Pryvokzalna Street in Spartak (non-government controlled, 9km north of Donetsk) when he heard the sound of two explosions and fell to the ground.’

Again, therefore, this took place in non-government controlled territory. And so it turns out that not a single one of the victims of war mentioned by David Ignatius was injured as a result of rebel fire – the injuries were all either self-inflicted or the consequence of the Ukrainian military firing on civilians in rebel-held territory. If Ignatius’ argument is that these people need protecting and that President Trump has a moral duty to provide military assistance to the armed forces which are defending them, then the only logical conclusion is that the United States is providing aid to the wrong side.

Or perhaps the argument is just completely bogus in the first place.

10 thoughts on “Trump is killing Ukrainians!”

    1. Ignatius carries on like a Deep State shill, in line with his establishment neolib/neocon leaning foreign policy biases.

      Know my share of people of Ukrainian background in the US who hold the Kiev regime side responsible for reckless carnage that has included the killing of many innocents.

      Under Trump, the US has armed the Kiev regime much unlike under Obama.

      The US is being misled by anti-Russian/pro-Kiev regime individuals, including George Kent, David Kramer and William Taylor. Some specifics regarding these three individuals:

      https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/08/21/getting-real-with-the-us-foreign-policy-establishment-realists/

      https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/10/17/geopolitical-realism-utilized-by-obama-and-trump/

      https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/11/12/us-mass-media-government-ties-remain-strong-on-russia-bashing/

      Liked by 1 person

  1. “Ukrainians are dying, and it’s Donald Trump’s fault.”

    Huh. I thought Joker is killing them:


    Look out, he’d infiltreded Verkhovna Rada!

    “The basic charge is that Trump abused his office by making military aid to Ukraine conditional on the Ukrainian government investigating his Democratic Party rival Joe Biden. Ignatius, however, argues that Trump’s behaviour is worse than that. For by treating military aid ‘as a personal political tool’, Trump has been playing with peoples’ lives.”

    🙂

    “Mr. Kolomoisky said that if he were Ukraine’s president, he would proceed with the investigations sought by Mr. Trump. Asked if that risked exposing Ukraine to blowback if a Democrat were to win next year’s presidential election, Mr. Kolomoisky responded: “If they get smart with us, we’ll go to Russia.”
    “Russian tanks will be stationed near Krakow and Warsaw,” he said. “Your NATO will be soiling its pants and buying Pampers.”.”
    – Thus Spoke Ihor “Benya Kolomoysky to the mega-handshakable New York Times d-urnalist.

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  2. thanks paul… it is hard to keep up with these liars and fabricators.. you clean up their mess, and they go make another one for the propaganda press to print… “the argument is just completely bogus in the first place.” that’s it exactly…

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  3. I watched a large part of the hearing (depositions?) incidentially via the WP’s life feed.

    But the one passage–leaving the well prepared partisan narratives aside– he picked up seems from Taylor’s testimony. I am sure. Considering Taylor reported visiting the front lines …. was surely the most stupid he could mention, but then maybe the Democrats legal advisers admonished him to do. … Wasn’t there the huge introduction leading up to Taylor as 5th of his class of what 500 at West Point?

    I do have a vague idea about the reason’s why the DNC in 2015/16 still, in spite of all, considered Hillary, as we say over here “their best horse in the stable”, but why, oh why … They didn’t notice the tremendous amount of burden, spelled, double standards in picking Biden and his son as the appropriate choice to defend against “Trump’s devious system corruption”.

    It all should have started there. Blinded occasionally?

    ——–
    It’s strange to watch American politics at the moment. They are driving themselves into circles with their own narratives while the world watches. Splitter in my own national eye? Maybe?

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    1. ok, alife, ongoing, ending in the not so enlightening comments of a trio, I mostly watched the body talk at that point in time, I guess, with the upcoming press conference of Erdogan and Trump on the bottom right.

      It’s live feed of course.

      you’ll forgive?? Still no spell checker but not sure if in that case it would have helped. Still curious, isn’t it, he managed to squeeze the 13.000 killed into that context?

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  4. I would say that even if it was true, it would have been worse if the US had sent military aid. Much of the evil in the world consists in the US shoring up this or that “ally”, mostly nasty people who can’t rely on its own peoples for protection. The world would be a better place without great power alliances. Perhaps a road to there would be that “allies” recognize that the US is not trustworthy?

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