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Alternative Accounts of the Russian-Ukraine conflict: introduction


I’ve long refrained from commenting on the Russian-Ukraine conflict.

First off, it’s still a recent development, only two months in the making if we’re to count February 24 as the starting point of open hostilities.. More importantly, however, I wanted to see how the mainstream media might respond to the unfolding events.  

Now that the US foreign policy concerning this conflict has been fully articulated and our media’s stance crystallized—there being no indication that it’s about to change—it’s time to chime in.


Let me state from the outset that I’m going to offer an uncomplimentary, dissident account of our involvement in this conflict, including the media’s role in propagating the US official position—a serious cause for concern in its own right. 

If you’re a “patriot,” confirmed in your beliefs that the US can do no wrong or that any critique of its foreign policy borders on treason, this article is not for you. But if you’re willing to consider the possibility that the official narrative leaves much to be desired, by all means, dive right into it.

It’s going to be a rough ride, but I promise a light at the end of the tunnel.


“Former NATO Military Analyst Blows the Whistle on West Ukraine Invasion Narrative,” an April 9, 2022 article by Jacques Baud, shall be our starting point. [1]

I’ll return to the subject article in future installments. Meanwhile, let me provide you with a brief overview of the alleged causes of the unfolding conflict and the timeline of events that had precipitated it, [2] [3]  


Last, I must also credit Ms. Caitlin Johnstone, a self-proclaimed “rogue journalist” and the author of the uncompromising blog,, for having provided the inspiration. Since day one, Caitlin has been a relentless critic of the “official narrative,” proving beyond reasonable doubt that it’s in dire need of a major corrective

The credit must also go to Ms. Johnstone’s avid readers and commenters, especially for providing invaluable links to alternative websites. Without access to these websites, this series of articles would not have been possible.   

  1. Jacques Baud is a former Colonel of the General Staff and a member of Swiss strategic intelligence, a specialist in Eastern European countries. Trained in the American and British intelligence services, he was the head of doctrine for United Nations peace operations. A United Nations expert for the rule of law and security institutions, he designed and led the first multidimensional United Nations intelligence service in Sudan. He worked for the African Union and took part in the fight against the proliferation of small arms at NATO for 5 years. He was engaged in talks with top Russian military and intelligence officials right after the fall of the USSR. Within NATO, he followed the Ukrainian crisis of 2014 and then participated in programs of assistance to Ukraine. He is the author of several books on intelligence, war, and terrorism, and in particular, Le Détournement published by SIGEST, Govern by fake news: the Navalny affair, and Poutine, master of the game? published by Max Milo.
  2. See “EXPLAINER: Why Did Russia Invade Ukraine?” a Feb 24, 2022 article by Elliott Davis Jr., in the US News & World Report, and Putin’s own Feb 24, 2022 speech, ordering “special military operation” for Ukraine.
  3. For a timeline of events precipitating and extending this conflict, see “Prelude to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine” and the following article, both from Wikipedia. Also, see the following slideshow, courtesy of US News & World Report. It identifies ten stages that had led to the 2012 conflict:

(i) December 1, 1991: Ukraine Independence Referendum. (After the fall of the Soviet Union, Ukraine voted for independence. The Ukrainian people overwhelmingly support becoming a sovereign state. Ukraine is the second-largest country in Europe by land mass and has a sizable population of ethnic Russians.) For events that had precipitated the referendum, see the following Wiki article.

(ii) December 5, 1994: The Budapest Memorandum. (The Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances was signed in late 1994, following Ukraine’s agreement to transfer all nuclear weapons from the Cold War to the Russian Federation, making Ukraine a non-nuclear power. Prior to this, Ukraine had physical possession of the world’s third-largest nuclear stockpile. Besides Ukraine, other signatories were the United States, the United Kingdom, and Russia, each committed to honoring Ukraine’s sovereignty and its rights to its territory.)

(iii) December 2004: Yushchenko victory at the polls over Russian-backed Victor Yanukovich. (A presidential election between Viktor Yushchenko, a western-oriented candidate, and Viktor Yanukovych, supported by Russia, create a massive controversy. Yushchenko was poisoned before the election, but he recovered and was declared a winner. Since the election was perceived as fraudulent. Ukrainians took to the street wearing orange, which was Yushchenko’s campaign color. By December, protestors forced a re-vote, resulting in a victory for Yushchenko.)

(iv) April 3, 2008: NATO’s declaration of “open-door” policy, including Ukraine. (In early April 2008, a NATO summit began with an intense debate about extending a Membership Action Plan (MAP) to Ukraine. In order to gain membership in NATO, a military alliance between 28 European countries and two North American countries dedicated to preserving peace and security in the North Atlantic area, countries must first have a MAP. Putin makes his opposition to Ukrainian membership known to NATO leaders, at one point telling President George W. Bush that Ukraine is “not even a real nation-state.” NATO does not offer Ukraine a MAP.)

(v) November 30, 2013: the Maidan Square events lead to Yanukovich’s fleeing Russia while the new leadership is poised to orient Ukraine toward the EU. (After promising to work toward a relationship with the European Union, President Yanukovych, who ran for president again and won in 2010, changes political direction and begins to orient Ukraine toward Russia. This, coupled with the controversial arrest of political opponent Yulia Tymoshenko, sparks widespread protests about perceived government corruption. There are protests across the country, centering on Maidan Square in Kyiv. At least 130 people, primarily civilians, are killed. Yanukovych flees to Russia, the new leadership commits to orienting Ukraine toward the European Union.)

(vi) February 2014: Annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation. (Russia seizes Crimea, a Ukrainian peninsula with a predominantly ethnic Russian population, in the aftermath of the Euromaidan protests. Russian troops occupy key sites on the peninsula, wearing military uniforms with Russian insignias removed. The annexation prompts international outrage and is condemned by the United Nations and the European Union.)

(vii) April 21, 2019: Volodymyr Zelenskyy Elected President of Ukraine. (Volodymyr Zelenskyy, a former comedian, overwhelmingly defeated the pro-Russia incumbent Petro Poroshenko in a presidential election. Zelenskyy’s party also wins a majority of seats in the parliament—a first in Ukrainian history. Zelenskyy’s campaign promises include ending the war with Russia and rooting corruption out of the Ukrainian government.)

(viii) December 2021: Putin Demands Security Guarantees. (Early in 2021, Zelenskyy cracked down on pro-Russian Ukrainian oligarchs, including Viktor Medvedchuk, a close friend of Putin. In response, Putin deploys increasing numbers of troops near the Ukrainian border and publishes an article claiming that Russians and Ukrainians are “one people.” By December, thousands of Russian troops are deployed to the borders, and Putin issues demands to NATO and the United States. Among these demands is that Ukraine never be admitted to NATO—a request rejected by the Biden administration.) 

(ix) Feb. 21, 2022: Russia Recognizes Breakaway Ukrainian Regions as Sovereign. (In 2014, the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk broke away from Ukraine, under the leadership of what the Ukrainian government considered “Russian-backed terrorists.” Following the breakdown of relations with NATO and the West in late February, Putin recognized these territories as independent states and sent troops in to “keep the peace.”)

(x) Feb. 24, 2022: Russia Launches Full-Scale Invasion of Ukraine. (Days after recognizing the breakaway territories, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The invasion began in the eastern Ukrainian territory of Donbas. Zelenskyy declared martial law in Ukraine and broke diplomatic ties with Russia. Putin’s actions were condemned across the world and within Russia.)

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

  • I am also reposting one positive response from Steve Kinney:

    Still, no mention of U.S.-sponsored ethnic cleansing operations against Russian-speaking natives of eastern Ukraine, initiated immediately after the U.S. installed government took power. These operations, which meet the definition of genocide under international law, have been led by (literally) Nazi militias that Ukraine incorporated into its armed forces immediately after taking power. They are ongoing today.
    Still no mention of the Sevastopol Naval Base, located in Crimea: It’s the Russian Federation’s most important defensive outpost, directly in the path of any Western ground invasion of the Federation. From the 2014 coup through the gushing flood of Big Lie propaganda following Russia’s invasion, the U.S. press has carefully shielded its audience from knowing that this base exists.
    Long story short: Russia will do whatever it takes to end the systematic murder of Russian-speaking people in Ukraine, and will go to war with NATO before surrendering Sevastopol. People who don’t understand this will keep on believing that the US/NATO axis can win its present proxy war against Russia in Ukraine.
    U.S. war aims include capturing Sevastopol (failed), locking Russia out of European oil and gas markets (in progress), and establishing Donbas as a NATO-controlled forward staging area for a potential future invasion of the Russian Federation (not likely).

  • In the interest of transparency and to provide full context for comment #1, I am reposting an exchange I’d had with Gerald Plummer. The exchange took place on the pages of Roger & Co. Collaborative Project Group, and it preceded Alan Kurtz’s comment.

    Gerald Plummer:
    Caitlin Johnstone? Seriously? It’s like using QAnon as a source of truth and information.
    I’ve read a lot of her work and it wouldn’t make very good Swiss cheese to be quite honest. She has about as much insight into the history of the region, Russia, the old soviet, and the Stalin wannabe Putin as a stale slice of bread.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    Attacking the messenger, Gerald, does not get into the heart of the matter.

    Gerald Plummer:
    Not the messenger. The messenger’s message is what I have a huge problem with. As I said I’ve read a lot of her work.
    And as I read thru your article it really does build a timeline that supports the fact that all along we’ve been dealing with a Stalin wannabe who has attacked a separate sovereign nation for the second time.
    And yet there is no mention so far of how Russian terrorists/ commanders bragged about shooting down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in July 2014 until they realized it wasn’t a Ukraine aircraft.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    If the timeline does support these “facts” then why should you have a problem with my article?

    Gerald Plummer:
    I think I was quite clear about the problem I had. Caitlin Johnstone. Hardly a source of reliable information to say the least.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    She ISN’T the source. It comes from numerous websites, all referenced.

    Gerald Plummer:
    I’m not trying to be argumentative. I didn’t imply that she was your only source. I simply have a problem with…
    Last, I must also credit Ms. Caitlin Johnstone, a self-proclaimed “rogue journalist” and the author of the uncompromising blog,, for having provided the inspiration. Since day one, Caitlin has been a relentless critic of the “official narrative,” proving beyond reasonable doubt that it’s in dire need of a major corrective.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    The “corrective” I’m talking about has to do with the “official’ Western account of what’s happening at ground zero. I’m dealing with an idea …

    Gerald Plummer:
    If that is true I’d jettison the harpy and be looking for a more prophetic Cassandra to find inspiration. Caitlin is blinded by a hatred of something she calls the US Empire as a singular boogeyman. A pure construction of an addled mind. Not anything like a more open mind capable of being intellectually honest or consistent in factoring the equations and variables the world is faced with at this time.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    Don’t know about Caitlin’s “blindness.” But as I stated in the introduction, if you think the US can do no wrong, then this article is not for you.

    Gerald Plummer:
    Okay, if you really believe that I think the US can do no wrong, then you have seriously misjudged me.
    My problem is with the narrow-minded harpies who can’t acknowledge that we can also do some things that are quite right.
    Maybe your article will be exclusively for the blind and harpies, then?
    Personally, I wouldn’t be interested in catering to that sort of audience.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    My aim is not to evoke an echo chamber for the purpose of gaining approval–only to stimulate the discussion.
    I’m surprised considering a great many articles I had posted that you’d entertain such an idea.

    Gerald Plummer:
    I’ve tried to be completely clear and transparent. I did mention the timeline and citations you set forth. And I’m not afraid to also mention the problem I have with resources that actually come from a hectoring crowd that can’t see beyond their own bias against the US as if they can do NO right.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    The resources you mention have to be evaluated on their own merit, apart from the “hectoring crowd,” no?

    Gerald Plummer
    That’s pretty much my point. But as for the “official” Western account? That in itself is a loaded phrase with its own bias.

    Roger Nowosielski:
    MSM account. It is what it is.

    Gerald Plummer:
    The media is made up of hard news reporting and opinion pieces that often overlap and are indistinguishable to most folk.
    It is hard to argue that there is less misinformation and disinformation coming from the FRINGE media.
    An example is all the Azov/ Nazi BS. Somehow they don’t mention that Putin has his own Nazi problems within his Wagner Group.…/putin-nazi-pretext-russia-war…

  • MSM account. It is what it is
    I do peruse the MSM and what I find predominantly are reports that they readily admit are unconfirmed or not yet confirmed when they are reports coming directly from either side – Ukraine or Russia. They are very careful to report them as either claims or allegations. The same is true of our own satellite and intel reports of what is happening.
    When MSM reports this is what we were told by Ukraine, or Russia, or USA intel, that is not the same as saying this is the absolute truth of what is happening. As in a court of law, on a jury, it is up to the person to weigh the evidence and the testimony of the witnesses and their own veracity.