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Lou Coatney: Russia now left with no choice but nuclear war

I was a junior in Rock Island Senior High during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis when we almost did have a nuclear war with Russia then, but this is infinitely worse, with weapons far more powerful and instantaneous and computerized retaliation systems like Russia’s Dead Hand.

In Juneau in the '80s, I strongly defended national defense and nuclear deterrence when we were on the defensive, but we have since become the aggressor. In 1992, I was at Gorbachev’s end of the Cold War speech at Westminster College in Missouri, and we were all so happy the fear was OVER, and we could welcome the Russians as the friends they wanted to be.

Instead, our “liberal/humanitarian interventionists” and “neoconservatives” — the revolution, coup-, and war-spreading opposite of conservative who are utopians like their older members were once openly Trotskyists — have since wrecked everything: Iraq, Libya, Syria, and now Ukraine/Russia.

Ukraine war: 'It's heartbreaking': Former Galesburg resident reflects on invasion of her native Ukraine

In 1999 we broke our promise — documented — not to push NATO east, when we added Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Russia-hating Poland. Then, we forced our Kosovo bombing war on the Serbs with Rambouillet Appendix B which made betrayed and enraged Russian democrat Boris Yeltsin turn Russia back over to its national security community: Putin.

See George Shultz’s Dec. 11, 2020, Washington Post column about the Russians’ trust we had and threw away.

In 2014 we broke our Budapest peace agreement with the Russians with our Kyiv coup — not a “revolution” for four obvious, objective reasons — threatening them at their throats with NATO which became an aggressor with Kosovo and then Libya — no longer a legitimate defensive alliance.

In 2016 was a choice between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton — World War 3 then. In the final 2020 debate, Kristen Welker wouldn’t ask Biden the most dangerous question and issue: whether he would push for adding Ukraine to NATO as he has long wanted.

By Nuremberg starting/causing a war is the worst war crime of all, begetting all the war crimes which follow. And Biden and Blinken stubbornly and decisively opposing the Russians getting the security treaty they need (and we owe them after our broken promises/agreements) caused this war, making them at least as responsible for any war crimes which have happened.

Zelensky himself specifically triggered the war when — pumped up by the Europeans at Munich — he indicated Ukraine would be open to getting nuclear weapons. The next day, the Russia invaded.

It was always known the Russians could not win a conventional war with us/NATO which this now is. Just as we left them with no choice but war, they are now left with no choice but nuclear war.

The Russians have real civil defense and some chance of survival. We do not, except for our war-eager elites, of course.

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Parents and grandparents should be strongly telling Congress that we do not want nuclear war and that it/they should instead be pushing Ukraine to sign a treaty to end this Ukraine War, before it becomes the nuclear holocaust my generation has always lived in dread of.

I cannot believe this is happening, and I deeply fear for my children and grandchildren.

Lou Coatney was born in Galesburg and grew up in Rock Island. He was a volunteer U.S. Army draftee in NATO in West Germany. His WIU thesis about the 1940 Katyn Massacre (and others) as a Cold War issue can be read on ibiblio. He is a retired Carl Sandburg College librarian over in Norway for his two younger Norwegian-American children.