- - Friday, August 1, 2014

I have been dismayed by the recent media coverage of events at Kiev’s Maidan, the toppling of the corrupt Ukranian President Viktor Yanukovych, the subsequent invasion of Crimea and now the events in eastern Ukraine. Indeed, the media still misspeak about the so-called “separatists.” An invasion force of mercenaries and a neighboring country’s military, intelligence service and hired thugs is not a separatist movement under any definition found in any dictionary. Call them terrorists. Call Russian President Vladimir Putin a state sponsor of terrorism. This terminology fits and is corroborated by facts.

The greatest surprise has been the inclusion of a paid advertising supplement in The Washington Times. Yes, there is a difference between news, opinion and advertising, but the editorial responsibility of a newspaper is to weigh the impact and veracity of whatever it publishes. Anything in print under your banner has the ability to form public opinion. The alleged facts presented in a particular ad that ran have been proved as misinformation generated by the sophisticated Mr. Putin.

Shame on the Western elected officials who have become duped stooges of Mr. Putin and have lent their support to actions in defiance of international law and basic human rights. Amoral justification of national interest was clearly enunciated in “Mein Kampf.” Has the world not learned its lesson? It is remarkable that what used to be a monopoly of the left has now found fertile ground on the right. The student movements of the 1960s were adoration societies for Karl Marx and the revolutions made in his name. Today, remarkably, Mr. Putin courts and subsidizes right-wing groups in Europe and in the United States.

A new love affair with the world’s new prima donna, Mr. Putin, bodes ill for the world order and humankind. Responsible journalism calls for clear differentiation when the big lie is being perpetrated. Remember, Western media found lots of room for adulation of Hitler and Mussolini in the 1930s; even Stalin was praised post-World War II. Let us not make the same mistakes with Mr. Putin’s gas-bloated corporate state. Mr. Putin means what he says. His life goal is to be a triumphant Napoleon marching West. Europe and the United States have a choice: to observe or to act.

ANDRIJ W. CHORNODOLSKY

Lutherville-Timonium, Md.