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Mark Nuckols: Putin's Propaganda Distorts US Role in Ukraine

By Joe Battaglia   |   Monday, 21 Apr 2014 06:09 PM

The U.S. government is being portrayed as weak and the real wrongdoers in Ukraine by Russian authorities — and it appears to be part of the Kremlin's plan as it amasses troops on Ukraine's border, according to an American educator working in Moscow.

Mark Nuckols, a professor at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, told J.D. Hayworth and John Bachman Monday on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV that America's role in the Ukraine conflict is being distorted by Russian propaganda.

"The portrayal in Russian state media is that these are simple, decent, honest, patriotic Ukrainians who are afraid of a fascist junta that's been installed in Kiev by the United States government," Nuckols said, "and they're simply trying to protect their own rights and to protect their own safety when, in fact, it seems increasingly apparent that these takeovers have been organized by special forces sent by the Russian military."

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According to The Washington Post, Russia has an estimated 40,000 troops massed on Ukraine's border in what NATO says is a state of readiness to invade. Over the weekend, a truce worked out in Geneva between Russia, Ukraine, and Western powers was shattered after a deadly gunfight killed at least two pro-Russian militants near Slavyansk.

The attack sparked outrage in Moscow, but according to Western-backed authorities in Kiev, was actually a setup orchestrated by Russia to create a pretext for military action.

These developments, Nuckols said, are another example of Russia's dismissal of President Barack Obama's leadership.

"Unfortunately, the Kremlin only understands the logic of force, particularly military force," Nuckols said. "So they see a lot of our diplomacy and a lot of our culture, honestly, is being based on a kind of Western weakness as opposed to Russian traditional values of strength and power, which is ironic because Russia is a remarkably weak state compared to the United States."

Nuckols added that Russian President Vladimir Putin's actions are a clear sign of the low regard in which he holds the United States and Western Europe.

"Putin doesn't particularly care about international opinion, particularly what Americans may think or the United States may think," Nuckols said. "And I don't think he particularly cares about international law."

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