Washington’s ‘blame Russia’ policy is part of superior righteousness culture

Catherine Shakdam
Catherine Shakdam is a political analyst, writer and commentator for the Middle East with a special focus on radical movements and Yemen. A regular pundit on RT and other networks her work has appeared in major publications: MintPress, the Foreign Policy Journal, Mehr News and many others.Director of Programs at the Shafaqna Institute for Middle Eastern Studies, Catherine is also the co-founder of Veritas Consulting. She is the author of Arabia’s Rising - Under The Banner Of The First Imam
The US blame game with Russia is part of greater policy of always claiming political and moral righteousness, as well as sovereignty over entire states and even the skies, says Catherine Shakdam from the Shafaqna Institute of Middle Eastern Studies.

Representatives of the US Air Force offered apologies for an incident over Syria, in which US and Russian military jets were involved in a “near-miss” situation, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense. The MoD was forced to comment on the incident, as officials “were surprised by yet another attempt from the American military command to shift the blame [to] the Russian Air Force.”

RT: Russia says the incident was provoked by the US plane changing its planned flight path. Do you think it’s the reason why the Pentagon sounded cautious in its description of the incident, calling it “unintentional” and even “not too dangerous?”

Catherine Shakdam: I think the US is trying to backpedal a little bit. Because it realizes that every day when it intervenes in Syria it’s actually breaking international law. Because Damascus, I don’t recall, actually invited anybody else except for Iran and Russia to actually engage in Syria against terrorists.

So whatever intervention the US is in fact enacting on the ground is illegal by international law standards. And I think it’s something it’s trying to distance itself from rather than actually trying to emphasize on this illegality that they have been, you know, going at for, it’s been months now.

For me, it’s just really undisputed in this culture that America has today, that it owns everything. America seems to own the sky, it seems to own countries’ sovereignties. It’s insanity today that whenever America does something, and if anyone has the courage, I would say, to criticize and to even challenge, then they become a criminal. And this is why I think today Russia is being targeted. It’s not of course the only country to be targeted, but today it has become almost a joke, where everything from global warming to internet crashing or Hillary Clinton’s emails – it’s always Russia.

RT: That’s what we’re seeing now, because some media switched to that familiar anti-Russian stance. Was it due to a lack of information or just that habit of blaming Russia for the things that go wrong?

CS: I think it’s a default setting today of the US where everything has to be Russia… It’s a culture where, rather than trying to kind of justify their stance or even their policy, all they are trying to do is exist against other people, is to try to shift the blame onto other people, rather than try, again, to defend their own. Which is very interesting, because it’s the attitude of a bully, really, and a fascist entity, trying to silence the opposition, or even criticism by trying to claim righteousness. And in this case it’s political righteousness, legal righteousness, moral righteousness. Everything these days America does has to be holy.

Again, when it comes to Syria, I don’ think that America can hold to any kind of higher ground… If anything they have been behaving like criminals of war, if not, you know, criminals against humanity, to be completely honest with you.

RT: Do you think this incident was brushed under the carpet, because we didn’t hear about it for 10 days?

CS: Yes, can you imagine if it happened the other way around, if in fact Russia had actually behaved in the manner that the US behaved? That, I think, would have been in the headlines for months and months, trying to kind of dissect what happened, and why it in the world did it happen in the first place?

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It’s more than double standards today. I think, we’re trying to legitimize and rationalize criminality today, at least when it comes to the US media. And again, I don’t think the US media have anything to do, or even interested in truth or reality. What they trying to do is just to be narrative, and trying to justify the actions in the world, but again, claiming the political high ground and deciding what needs to be done, what is holy, what should be done, how a country should behave. Which again, I think, should be definitely put in check. I mean, what kind of world are we living in if America is allowed to do what it wants just because it can? You know, this kind of mightiest right attitude simply cannot work, at least not if we are serious about international law and even democracy.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.