Roger Waters is the co-founder and former musician of the British progressive rock band Pink Floyd.
In August 2022, Waters called US President Joe Biden a «war criminal» and said he was allegedly «starting a fire» in Ukraine.
«Why doesn’t the United States push Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to negotiate to end this horrible, horrible war that is killing Ukrainians and Russians?» asked the musician.
In September, the musician wrote a letter to the first lady of Ukraine, Olena Zelenska, in which he urged her to press her husband to «end the war.»
Waters also made several provocative statements in the letter:
- To end the civil war in the East and bring peace to the Donbas and partial autonomy to Donetsk and Luhansk.
- And to ratify and implement the rest of the body of the Minsk-2 agreements. And he called supporting Ukraine by providing it with weapons «adding fire to the oil.»
On February 8, 2023, Roger Waters spoke before the UN Security Council at the invitation of the Russian Federation.
In his speech, the musician called for a ceasefire and called the Russian attack on Ukraine «provoked»:
«The Russian invasion of Ukraine was not unprovoked, so I also strongly condemn the provocateurs.»
What is wrong with these statements?
«The USA is guilty of the war»
The Center for Countering Disinformation at the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine previously warned that this is a narrative of Russian propaganda.
For example, the head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, stated that the Russian Federation «is not fighting against Ukraine, but against NATO.»
Anatoliy Kurnosov, an expert at the Center for Political Studies «Doctrine» explained why Russia spreads these statements:
«This thesis is not new. Putin first stated Russia’s reluctance to put up with the «unipolar world system» dominated by the United States in his Munich speech in 2007. After that, there was a war and the occupation of part of Georgia in 2008, the invasion of Ukraine with the occupation of Crimea and parts of the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Today, Russia postulates even more widely — that it is at war with the entire North Atlantic Alliance. Let us at least recall NATO’s ultimatum on the prevention of expansion, membership of Ukraine and other states that were once part of the USSR, withdrawal of weapons and forces from the territory of countries that became NATO members after 1997. Justifying one’s own aggression as a perceived threat from others is not something new. Let’s also recall the «sung in memes» phrase of Putin’s satellite Lukashenka, who tried to show on the map where the attack on Belarus was being prepared. And now, already after the large-scale invasion of Ukraine during the year of the war, Russia openly threatens the EU and NATO countries, especially the Baltic countries and Poland. And it is clear that in case of success in Ukraine, she would not stop and would go further. In addition, such narratives are designed to complement others — about the West’s war fatigue, the need to abandon support for Ukraine.»
“The civil war in the East»
The confrontation in eastern Ukraine is not a civil war.
«The confrontation in the East of Ukraine is an armed confrontation between terrorists financed by the Russian Federation and with the support of its regular military units — on the one hand, and Ukrainian law enforcement and military — on the other. Many world experts have already characterized the confrontation in eastern Ukraine as the Ukrainian-Russian war of 2014. At the same time, some Ukrainian politicians call it a «hybrid war», — explains the Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Ukraine, officially accredited by the Ministry of Economic Development and registered in the government register of Italian Chambers of Commerce.
«Ratify and implement the rest of the body of the Minsk-2 agreements»
Recently, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy explained that the Minsk agreements were initiated by the West from the very beginning as a concession to Russia and that they could not be implemented without Ukraine losing territory.
At most, the representative of Ukraine in the political subgroup of the Minsk Trilateral Contact Group on peaceful settlement (2015-2016, 2019) Roman Bezsmertnyi stated the following:
«The Minsk Agreements contradict international law. They were signed under pressure, and the UN Charter clearly states: an agreement or any act signed under pressure is invalid. Even the transcript of the meeting of the leaders of France, Germany, Russia, and Ukraine is documentary evidence that the Minsk Agreements were signed under pressure. In addition, this is evidenced by «the memories of Hollande and Merkel, who spoke about Putin’s intimidation of Poroshenko at the meeting. You can find many witnesses and eyewitnesses.»
«Giving weapons to Ukraine — «adding fire to oil»
«Military force is the language of the Kremlin, and it is this force that will push the Russians back to Russia. The Russians know this, which is why they threaten with nuclear weapons. They are afraid that Ukraine will take over. But it is high time to change the one who dictates the red lines. Russia will change its self-perception if it sees Ukraine equipped with Western weapons capable of retaliating decisively and quickly. In the end, the West will save many more lives and save both military and economic costs in the long run. The alternative is a bold, aggressive, and barbaric Russia, which is increasingly ready to terrorize the civilian population in order to achieve its imperialist goals,» explains Ilya Timchenko, journalist, master of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, founder, and head of the Ukrainian Caucus, HKS student organization.
«Ukraine provoked the Russian attack»
U.S. The Department of State on its official website denied this fake:
«Moscow instigated the current crisis by placing more than 100,000 troops on the border of Ukraine, with no similar military activity on the Ukrainian side of the border. Russian military and intelligence entities are targeting Ukraine with disinformation attempting to paint Ukraine and Ukrainian government officials as the aggressor in the Russia-Ukraine relationship. The Russian government is trying to trick the world into believing Ukraine’s behavior could provoke a global conflict and to convince Russian citizens of the need for Russian military action in Ukraine. Russia blames others for its own aggression, but it is Moscow’s responsibility to end this crisis peacefully through de-escalation and diplomacy.»
«It is difficult to comment on such obvious nonsense. This testifies to the intellectual level of a person who was once the idol of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians, and now even Russian propagandists themselves laugh at her,» Anatoly Kurnosov, an expert at the Center for Political Studies «Doctrine», believes.
By the way, on March 30, 2022, Pink Floyd together with Andrii Khlyvnyuk from the Ukrainian band Boombox released the single Hey Hey Rise Up. The band will donate all the money earned to humanitarian aid to Ukraine.
So far over £450,000 has been raised, David Gilmour and Nick Mason have added £50,000 to take the total to £500,000. The money will be shared between humanitarian charities.
In his statements, Roger Waters spreads false information and thus plays along with Russian propaganda. Given the authority of the musician, and his influence on his supporters, such actions threaten the spread of misinformation in society.
Editor’s note. Roger Waters is certainly a talented musician and a true master of words. It is worth remembering how in many ways his creations of the Pink Floyd group opened the ulcers of British society and were used by various movements for freedom and equality in different parts of the world. You can actually remember his solo album (but under the Pink Floyd title, The Final Cut (1983)), which opposed the war in Afghanistan, in particular, and which parodied and criticized the totalitarian leaders of the 20th century. For this album, Pink Floyd was included in the number of musical groups banned in the USSR with the wording «perverting Soviet foreign policy». But for many decades, the previously talented author has been exploiting his ostentatious «anti-capitalism» and «anti-colonialism», playing along (wittingly or unwittingly) with the very symbols that he so criticized in his earlier work.