I have been buried alive in my wee flat churning out text for a book that needs to be finished … pronto. This is why I haven’t been posting — thank you for asking! The book is entitled: LIARS — Propaganda, Deceit and Lies in the Ukrainian War. Below are the first few pages. Please spread the word; I really want this to sell well.
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
One of the main rules of life.”
Four days before Christmas 2022, a US Air Force jet accompanied by F15 fighter planes whisked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky out of Poland[i] and over the Atlantic. In a few hours, Zelensky was to give a “Churchillian” speech to the United States Congress. Secrecy enshrouded this trip.[ii] Security was tight – before Zelensky was flown over England, a NATO spy plane scoured the skies through which his plane would travel …
“… so Russians don’t kill him.”
But the Russians didn’t show. Though the media yearned for the news-friendly images of American military fighter pilots protecting Zelensky from a Russian attack, reality was far more prosaic. The Russian military, it turned out, was too focused on the battlefield to look up.
The “danger” Zelensky supposedly faced was hyped. It never existed. This propaganda was sexier than the reality it obscured, which, in this case, was partisan wrangling over money: United States President Joe Biden needed to pass his appropriations bill … which just happened to include bill 45 billion dollars for the Ukraine.
Few reporters and editorialists commented on the content of the speech except the New York Times which to its credit published it online. Instead, the media gushed over “optics.” No one – absolutely no one — does optics better than the American Democratic Party; this speech is a case in point. Standing before America’s most powerful elected politicians, Zelensky was perfectly staged: he wore a military-green sweatshirt and pants as if he had just been snatched off a bloody battlefield; Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Kamela Harris lowered a camera-friendly, large, colourfully signed Ukrainian flag from the upper tier of the rostrum (oops … it was upside down!); Pelosi awkwardly kissed Zelensky’s hand like an infatuated teen; and, scores of elected officials stretched out their arms to pat the shoulder or shake the hand of the Slavic demi-god they had created, then worshipped.
This may have been the high point in Zelensky’s political career. It certainly was high drama. With wrinkled forehead, beard carved like a scythe along his temples, and a sombre expression, Zelensky recited his speech. There was no teleprompter. Though he spoke off a printed speech, like an actor reading his lines for the first time, Zelensky didn’t seem familiar with the text. He spoke deliberately, carefully and slowly, one word after the next, rarely looking up. When finished, he ducked his head below the podium to find a hidden flag which he presented to Pelosi and Harris.
As Pelosi leaned forward to take the gift of a Ukrainian flag, Zelensky, a diminutive man, stood tall to give her a European-style greeting – faire la bise – a light kiss on each cheek. In one of the most awkward moments of the evening, Pelosi didn’t seem to understand the custom of kiss-greetings so common in Europe: she grabbed his forearm and kissed his hand.
Zelensky then stood for a moment before the roomful of politicians with his hand on heart — a universal gesture of sincerity and gratefulness – turning to take, from Pelosi, a US flag folded in a wooden, triangular box with a clear cover. Walking out of the Congressional chamber down a wide aisle, media-hungry politicians reached to shake his hand or touch his shoulder.
The lights dimmed.
A few Democrats shouted, “Slava Ukraini” – Glory to Ukraine.
I ask you this: would a truly endangered Zelensky have tweeted, while still in the air, “On my way to the US … I will have a speech at the Congress?”