John McCain’s Boorish Attack on Russia in Contrast to Putin’s Civil Appeal to the US

John McCain can be sure that the Russian people will overthrow Putin thanks to his inspiring message.

John McCain can be sure that the Russian people will shortly overthrow Putin thanks to his inspiring message.



Patulcius-sqEight days after the New York Times published an editorial [1] by Russian president Vladimir Putin, in which he urged Americans to oppose military intervention in Syria, US Senator John McCain responded with a personal attack against Putin and the Russian government in the Russian tabloid Pravda.

On September 11, with Obama, John Kerry, and McCain all frothing at the mouth to destroy Assad, President Putin wrote a very civil message[1] to the American people that urged them to oppose their leaders in this war, promoting diplomatic solutions, and stating that military action did not serve American interests. He spoke courteously of President Obama, though questioned recent American policies while specifically targeting the concept of “American exceptionalism” that neo-cons have used to justify US intervention in other countries. Indeed, Obama’s attempt to use this phrase to persuade the American people to support his little war sounds strange and insincere coming from this supposed antithesis to George W. Bush.

John McCain took up the invitation by the Russian tabloid Pravda to respond to Putin[2]. Rather than focus his editorial on his case for military intervention in the Syrian Civil War, McCain chose to mainly attack Vladimir Putin and the Russian government.

US commentators have wondered why McCain would choose the Russian equivalent of The National Inquirer to publish his trash, assuming with justification that McCain believed that the modern Pravda was the same as the old Soviet Pravda. Boris Yeltsin closed the former national paper of the Soviet Union down in the aftermath of the failed Communist coup of August 1991.

McCain claims that the purpose of his article is to “dispel falsehoods used by Russia’s rulers to perpetuate their power and excuse their corruption”, essentially saying that he thinks Russians are fools. He attempts thereafter to show the Russians exactly why they are fools to support Putin.

“I believe you should live according to the dictates of your conscience, not your government. I believe you deserve the opportunity to improve your lives in an economy that is built to last and benefits the many, not just the powerful few. You should be governed by a rule of law that is clear, consistently and impartially enforced and just. I make that claim because I believe the Russian people, no less than Americans, are endowed by our Creator with inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This sounds very patriotic of McCain in an American sense.

Unfortunately, McCain’s case is undermined by the real state of the today’s United States. The US economy increasingly serves the “powerful few” rather than the many who now work in low-paying, part-time jobs, whose businesses struggle with incomprehensible regulations, or who depend on government hand-outs for day-to-day living. McCain speaks of rule of law, impartially and justly enforced. Yes, we see how the federal government obeys the rule of law with their electronic spying, their constant violation of the Bill of Rights, and their thuggish SWAT team tactics. McCain’s misquote of the Declaration of Independence rings pretty hollow these days.

McCain then appeals to homosexuality and a disorderly girls’ punk rock band to gain the sympathy of Russians against Putin? This would seem, among those not perverted by American popular culture, to strengthen Putin’s case. Putin can stand up for traditional morals against the decadence of the West.

McCain does accurately cite Russian corruption and the slackening of foreign investment in the country (the latter in a particularly snotty fashion). These attacks do hit, though the effects of McCain’s beligerance will do little to win the Russian people to his cause.

When McCain finally gets around to discussing Syria, he rails against Russian support for tyrants and its support of a Syria that kills tens of thousands while Russia ignores the plights of millions of refugees. Once again we hear the selective humanitarian bleating of the neocons, who would consider the plights of the Syrians with military attacks that will oust Assad and bring terrorists to power who will eradicate the Christian communities of Syria, as they have already started to do.

Vladimir Putin inaugerated in a church.  The Russian president has acted to preserve Russian culture and sovereignty while the American government has consistently undermined its own.

Vladimir Putin inaugurated in a church. The Russian president has acted to preserve Russian culture and sovereignty while the American government has consistently undermined its own.

McCain claims that Putin doesn’t believe in McCain’s earlier-stated values because he doesn’t believe in the Russian people, that Putin doesn’t believe that the unbridled human nature of the Russian people will lead to a just and peaceful society. Maybe Putin has seen what human nature is doing for the West. It seems to me that Putin is upholding Russian society and sovereignty while the United States government is doing everything possible to destroy those things in America.

John McCain wraps up his article by repeating that the believes in the Russian people who have sacrificed so much in the past. For his final sentence, he expresses his longing for the day when Putin falls from power.

A true master of diplomacy, that John McCain.  Maybe he should replace John Kerry.

[1]Putin, Vladimir. “A Plea for Caution From Russia.” The New York Times: The Opinion Pages. The New York Times Company, 11 Sept. 2013. Web. 19 Sept. 2013. <

[2] McCain, John. “Senator John McCain: Russians Deserve Better than Putin.” English, 19 Sept. 2013. Web. 19 Sept. 2013.

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