• The Low Down

Anti-Russian rhetoric reaches fever pitch

The Editor,


Government and media anti-Russian/Putin rhetoric has reached fever pitch. CBC’s “How Putin used propaganda to justify invading Ukraine” could easily have been matched with “How Bush/Blair used propaganda to justify invading Iraq,” a story never seen in the Western media. Instead, a familiar and simplistic good vs. evil narrative bombards the public, leaving no room for dissenting voices and nuanced debate.


The increasing proximity of U.S. and NATO military bases and nuclear weapons to Russian borders is beyond dispute, but apparently, providing context in this crisis is irrelevant at best and treasonous at worst. The Cuban missile crisis, which almost led to a nuclear war, tells us exactly how the West would behave should nuclear weapons approach our shores.


A brief sampling of the West’s ignoble actions and crimes, all well-documented, unveils a very different picture that should discredit them as honest actors and reliable sources by any standards.


Canada’s tacit support for the U.S./U.K. outright illegal invasion of Iraq. The subsequent death and untold suffering of millions are a direct consequence of our closest ally's violation of international law. Canada has remained silent for over 20 years.


The deafening silence of the West on Guantanamo Bay on its 20th anniversary was described by UN experts as an “ugly chapter of unrelenting human rights violations.”

A UN report describes ongoing arms sales by Canada, the U.S., U.K. and France as fueling the Saudi Arabian war in Yemen. The situation in Yemen has been described as the worst humanitarian crisis in the world with a “surreal and absurd dimension” of human rights violations.


In 2021 Amnesty International Canada reported that Canadian weapons sales to Saudi Arabia were flouting international law.


In late 2021, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution condemning Nazism, neo- Nazism and all forms of racism. The U.S. and Ukraine voted against it (Canada and western allies abstained). The resolution was adopted 130-2.


The Treaty on Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, a legally binding agreement that would ban nuclear weapons and lead towards their total elimination, was adopted by the UN in 2021. Canada and NATO nations have refused to sign the treaty despite claiming to be committed to disarmament.


The above is a small selection, mostly not newsworthy in the West, which should give us pause to consider the legitimacy of our unquestionable commitment to the oft-repeated international rules-based order and claims to a higher moral authority.


Vagner Castilho

Wakefield, QC