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Ukraine Peace Talks: Pathetic U-Turn by 30 Dems & Curious Case of Jeffrey Sachs

By Ekaterina Blunova – Samizdat –  26.10.2022

On Tuesday, the progressive caucus of the US House of Representatives made an abrupt U-turn and withdrew their letter to US President Joe Biden, which urged him to engage in direct talks with Russia and broker peace between Kiev and Moscow. What’s going on in the Democratic camp?

“Not only was the letter a case of too little, too late, the so-called progressive signatories to the statement made themselves look even more pathetic in its immediate withdrawal,” Max Parry, an independent US journalist and geopolitical analyst, told Sputnik.

“While the letter was a refreshing first step, the Democrats who signed it became victims of the very same McCarthyist political atmosphere they have created in Washington, where any detente or rapprochement with Moscow is criminalized. Instead of digging in their heels and standing by what they said, the 30 lawmakers immediately caved to the political pressure of being branded Putin apologists and retracted the statement. They made it clear their loyalties lie with the party establishment and not with the American people, who are fed up with the Biden administration’s disastrous handling of the war and the economy,” he emphasized.

The American journalist believes that the motivation behind the letter was a response to growing fatigue among the US public regarding the ongoing standoff in Ukraine, “not to mention several recent public incidents of Democratic lawmakers being protested by their own constituents over their vote to arm Kiev which went viral on social media.”

According to Parry, US polls indicate growing support for a diplomatic resolution to the conflict. On September 27, a survey, conducted by Data for Progress on behalf of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, indicated that nearly 60% of Americans would support Washington engaging in diplomatic efforts “as soon as possible” to end the conflict in Ukraine, even if that means Ukraine having to make concessions to Russia.

“Surveys of the upcoming midterm elections also forecast the increasing likelihood of GOP gains in congress,” Parry continued. “Although US support for Ukraine has been mostly bipartisan, there have been far more vocal opponents of the Biden administration’s decision to arm Ukraine among Republicans than Democrats, most notably Marjorie Taylor Greene.”

On October 18, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy signaled that Republicans will not write a “blank check” for Kiev if they win back the House majority. According to US media, anti-aid sentiments are also strong among many Republican House and Senate candidates. If they win, the reduction of military assistance to Kiev is more than possible, as former US Senate candidate Mark Dankof told Sputnik on September 25.

While one needs to bear in mind that the anti-Russia consensus in Washington has long been bipartisan, 57 Republicans as recently as May voted against sending more lethal aid to Kiev, Parry underscored. Nonetheless, the independent journalist noted that this trend does not necessarily signal an upcoming departure from the Ukraine policy by the US.

“I am not convinced this will automatically materialize if the Republicans take back the House, because many of the purported adherents to Trump’s ‘America First’ agenda running for office are opportunists and based on historical precedent, some of those GOP lawmakers could turn back on their campaign pledges once they are in office,” he remarked.

When it comes to Democrats, “if they do indeed lose ground over the Ukraine war, it could lead to either a revival in the anti-war movement among the US left or a doubling down on the anti-Russian sentiment among Dems,” Parry presumed.

Jeffrey Sachs: Neoliberal Economist Turned Anti-NATO Rebel

The Dems’ latest flip-flopping on the Ukraine peace issue is not the only attempt at dissent on the left flank of the US political front. Renowned economist and Columbia University Professor Jeffrey Sachs has lambasted the Biden administration’s Russia strategy and urged Washington to mediate a peaceful settlement between Moscow and Kiev from the outset of the Russian special military operation to demilitarize and de-Nazify Ukraine.

“It was a welcome surprise to see a former neoliberal economist like Professor Sachs become an unexpected dissenting voice and critic of US policies as Washington continues to send a flow of arms to Ukraine,” said Parry.

In May 2022, Sachs wrote an op-ed urging the US to stop the conflict in Ukraine and insisting that the solution reached by Moscow and Kiev in March 2022 remains the only viable option for restoring peace. On June 27, the economist released an article eloquently titled “Ukraine Is the Latest Neocon Disaster,” again calling for peace negotiations and ending NATO’s eastward expansion towards Russia’s borders. On August 2, Sachs warned: “The government of Ukraine urges us not to negotiate, but to fight. This is a recipe for the destruction of Ukraine and the possible escalation to a nuclear war.”

Following the sabotage attack on Russia’s Nord Stream pipeline infrastructure in the Baltic Sea, Sachs pointed the finger at Washington as a potential culprit while speaking on air with a US mainstream broadcaster.

“The case of the recent political transformation of Professor Sachs is a curious one,” noted Parry. “After all, we are talking about one of the most prominent economic advisors to Western financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund. In particular, he was one of the preeminent economic aides to former communist governments in their transition to the free market and in the case of Russia, the economic reforms based on his ideas had devastating consequences when mass privatization and ‘shock therapy’ drove the Russian economy into a deep recession and plunged millions into poverty.”

The independent journalist emphasized that for Sachs to “now depart from US policy orthodoxies and criticize the demonization of Russia, even rightly pointing out that the US was the more likely candidate to have been behind the destruction of Nord Stream 2 pipeline, is simply stunning.”

Parry has drawn attention to the fact that Sachs’ “transformation” apparently started a few years ago, “when he criticized America’s dirty war in Syria in 2018.” “Now his ‘road to Damascus,’ or political conversion is complete,” the journalist added.

“Unfortunately, he is one among only a mere handful of public figures voicing opposition to NATO’s proxy war,” Parry continued. “Since the death of Stephen Cohen, America’s foremost scholar of Russian affairs, commentary on US relations with Moscow has been nothing short of monolithic, so the surprising calls for peace talks by Sachs were badly needed.”

“Once upon a time, there used to be something called the fairness doctrine in the media where there was some attempt to ensure that differing viewpoints were evenly reflected in news coverage of world events. Since February, there has been absolutely no attention given to the Russian perspective on the war whatsoever, nor any encouragement of dialogue and diplomacy allowed on major networks or newspapers. Even for corporate media, which has always been heavily biased toward the West, the lack of any diversity of opinions on this conflict is unprecedented,” Parry concluded.

October 26, 2022 - Posted by | Militarism, Progressive Hypocrite | , ,

6 Comments »

  1. Sachs, once a warmonger in his own right has seemed to have grown a conscience.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by papasha408 | October 26, 2022 | Reply

  2. An excellent commentary by EB/Samizdat. Parry is right on! Professor Sachs is as right on!

    Like

    Comment by roberthstiver | October 26, 2022 | Reply

  3. Word passed around in Congress, that Ol’ Nancy “The Cadaver” Pelosi was going to assemble the signatories and have them listen to her, watch her rub her wrists together and see her move her smile around her face.

    And, they were seen to take a knee for Ol’ Nance. Or maybe it was, Were seen to take a knee from Ol’ Nance. Then they groveled around on the floor.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by michael | October 26, 2022 | Reply

    • Good ole gin-soaked Nan, what a gal. One more skin-tightening operation and she’ll be wearing a beard!

      Liked by 1 person

      Comment by papasha408 | October 26, 2022 | Reply

  4. I mean, sure it’s nice, but Sachs still shouldn’t be trusted.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by dan | October 27, 2022 | Reply

  5. Sachs is most likely a Zionist operative, of course. But it’s a welcome voice nonetheless. Just don’t trust him, is all.

    But then that goes with all these players.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by dan | October 27, 2022 | Reply


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