You Say To-ma-to, I Say To-Mah-to

In a recent post I noted that a lot depends on one’s point of view.  Are US soldiers in Afghanistan supporting the government (Western media), or invaders (Afghanistan villagers)?  Are further tax hikes crushing our economy (Conservatives), or supporting growth (Liberals).  But the most prevalent, global instance of differing perspectives comes from Russia.

Yesterday, Russia’s President (for life?) Putin “reclaimed Crimea as a part of Russia”.  Speaking of NATO he stated, “they cheated us again and again, made decisions behind our backs, presenting us with completed facts…”, when discussing NATO’s Eastern advancement in the last 60 years.

But ask almost any Western analyst and they would say that NATO’s Eastern advancement over the last 60 years has been done openly, and with the consent of the governments of each of the countries who have partnered with NATO.  It is similar to the events in th eUkraine in the last month.  Western media and analysts see what happened there as an overthrow of the government by a morally outraged populace who have taken “democratic” control of the country in the short term with plans for a formal election in the coming months.  But Russia saw it as a coup that overthrew a legitimate government.  A coup led by insurgents who have no authority to control the Ukraine at this time.

So your version of events, in the Ukraine and in other instances, depends a lot on your desired outcome.  We are all inherently subjective in our analysis of any given situation.  It takes a conscious effort to be objective.  And who knows what is right… it correct to allow one’s inherent feelings to cloud one’s assessment of a situation?  Some would say yes.  But to me, especially in the spectrum of global geo-politics, objectivity needs to rule to achieve outcomes that can last.


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