Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Victorious Stupidity in the Ukraine

February 25th, 2014 by G.

The Ukrainian rebellion, having succeeded, now wants the outgoing honcho prosecuted for shooting protesters. This is stupid.

Using deadly force to quell rebellion and disorder is not a criminal act. No government could function if it forswore using violence to suppress violent dissent. Since no government could function without it, it must not be criminal for a government to do it.

One might as well prosecute a government for passing laws or collecting taxes.

Yanukovych was a massively corrupt Putin lapdog, surely there are any number of other things he could be prosecuted for.

Comments (12)
Filed under: Birkenhead Drill,Deseret Review | Tags: , , , ,
February 25th, 2014 14:24:16
12 comments

Thomas More
February 25, 2014

Your view is consonant with the theory of just war and lawful belligerence, which goes back at least four hundred years. That alone is reason to give it thoughtful consideration.

We didn’t hang anyone for crimes against the peace at the end of World War II, though we did imprison some defendants for it, and we added it to other charges brought against defendants whom we did hang.

I think this is a case of giving the devil benefit of law, for our own safety’s sake.


Bookslinger
February 25, 2014

When rats fight snakes, it’s hard to pick a side.


Scott W. Clark
February 26, 2014

These were innocent people gunned down by snipers from a distance. If the news there is saying that it was some sort of right wing putsch it is wrong. It wasn’t.
I am currently in ukraine for what it’s worth and was down on the square a few weeks back.


Adam G.
February 26, 2014

They were protesters occupying a public space and demanding that the government be replaced.

This does not make them wicked by any means. But no functioning government can afford to say categorically that it will not use violence on people who are doing things like that. If that did happen, the attractor would be more and more protests and changes of government until one came along that decided not to pussyfoot around.

Force is the necessary tool for governance.


Scott W. Clark
February 26, 2014

But all they did was occupy the square. It was never a threat to anyone and there’s the stupidity of it if you really want to know. It was like Occupy Wall Street but add in close to 100 deaths from snipers with kidnappings and torture, and close to a thousand injured. That is not legitimate goverment use of force. And it was all because they occupied a square.


Vader
February 26, 2014

If there was torture, there’s a crime involved that can be legitimately punished. Sniping at protestors who pose no clear and present danger to innocent lives, ditto.

“Kidnapping” sounds a lot like “arrest” when it’s done by a government. Our own Constitution permits the writ of habeas corpus to be suspended in time of insurrection.

If I had to pick a side to win, I’d pick the side that has apparently won. I, and I think Adam, are just a bit leery of the Committee of Public Safety attitude that may follow.


Adam G.
February 26, 2014

If private people take over a public venue, then force is justified to restore order, even if the people aren’t immediately threatening anyone.

To say otherwise is to embrace anarchy.

If you will the end–effective governance that can control its own territory–you will the means–violence.


Vader
February 26, 2014

It seems to come down to a question of whether the amount of force used is appropriate, which is the sort of legal question that often doesn’t have a bright line.

A cop who opens fire on a car headed right for him may be justified. A cop who opens fire on a car headed away from him may be in trouble.


Bookslinger
February 26, 2014

Unarmed persons standing next to or down range from armed protesters are subject to the same bullets.

From what I’ve read/heard, there was armed violence on the part of protesters and counter-protesters.

Those who are opposed to Yanukovich could have waited until the next election, or could have forced a mid-term election. But they chose violence instead.

There really are -no- “good guys” in this conflict. It’s basically, at least among the armed factions, Nazis versus Communists.


Bookslinger
February 26, 2014

But all they did was occupy the square. It was never a threat to anyone and there’s the stupidity of it if you really want to know.

That doesn’t jibe with reports that I’ve read/heard. Some, not all, of the anti-Yanukovich factions _did_ and _are_ using violence. The violent protestors brought a violent response upon _all_ the protesters.


Scott W. Clark
February 27, 2014

I’ll say this and then I’m done. They never wanted to clear the square. I was down there like I say and the barricades were so flimsy that a child could have driven a tricycle through them. Any competent anitriot force wanting to clear the square could have done it in half an hour without many casualties. But these guys never did because they scattered, chased people down and beat them. They didn’t want to clear the square they wanted to punish and send a message.
One guy of a number of them they stripped naked, beat and then posed with their boots on his head for pictures. (And put it on Facebook.)
The kidnappings were people being taken by car to undisclosed locations and there being beaten for days. One guy they even tried to crucify. There are still a number of people missing.
A number of reporters had an eye shot out with those nonlethal rubber bullets. Some of the slugs used were of the key to the city variety that they use to blast open doors. They were nonrubber.
If the use of guns among the protestors was so widespread why were there only 6 police and riot police deaths? There is still some question about who fired the shots that killed them.
They beat people here to terrorize them because they had defied them. They tortured people and then shot innocent bystanders away from the square to terrorize the people. (One man left his father standing near his car so he wouldn’t have to walk too far–he was 65 or something and in not so good health–while he went down to the square. When he came back, some people were carrying a body off. It was his dad. He had been shot dead and it was nowhere near the square.)
The odd thing was that no one in the square was shot. The protestors kept telling people to come to the square to be safe.
You of course may dismiss this all as hysterical or maybe that I’ve gone native or maybe that the narrative isn’t quite the right one. Fine. Up to you. I happen to believe that the ukrainians deserve some of what happened because they voted this guy in and they engage in corruption themselves day to day and find it perfectly acceptable. (And brutality is kind of endemic to the population.) But for a number of days the limits to what the security forces could do and should do were removed and they terrorized, maimed and killed.
And we should stand up and call evil evil.
With that, I’m out of here.


Bookslinger
February 27, 2014

“If the use of guns among the protestors was so widespread why were there only 6 police and riot police deaths? There is still some question about who fired the shots that killed them.”

There ya go. As soon as people start shooting at police, they lose the right to complain about violent response. Innocent people with peaceful intentions who stand in the vicinity of the violent ones are going to catch the same hell.

In the heat of violence, guilt-by-association is a very real thing, and should be expected. “But I wasn’t shooting at anyone” is a poor rejoinder when you’re in a group that has someone who is.

Not all Occupy New York participants pooped on police cars, destroyed property, or raped fellow Occupiers, but dang-it, I’m going to judge all Occupiers by those actions.

It sounds to me like there are wicked and violent people on all sides. Government and anti-Yanukovich and pro-Yanukovich.

No matter the intentions of the “good/peaceful protesters”, it turned into a violent mob. Whether violence was “widespread” or not is irrelevant.

It doesn’t matter much the ratio of peaceful-to-violent protesters. As soon as someone starts shooting, the whole group better disperse and do what the police say as the police try to restore order.

If that protest had happened in ANY country, the government would have responded with force to restore order. Adam is totally right in his OP.

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