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There Were War Crimes in Bucha Whether You Choose to Believe It or Not


There are several hundred dead Ukrainians in the Kyiv suburb of Bucha. This is an incontrovertible fact as independent news sources have confirmed and Western media has been trumpeting it for the last two days.

What isn’t being mentioned nearly as often is that there are also several hundred dead Russian soldiers along with dozens of destroyed armored vehicles in the town.

Bucha was the scene of horrific battles — especially after Russia began to withdraw from the area. You can expect civilian casualties on an urban battlefield. Neither side is ever as careful as they are required to be by the Geneva Convention, and civilians always pay the price.

But executing bound men and women is a war crime. Deliberately targeting unarmed civilians is a war crime. And from the preliminary evidence collected by human rights groups and Western media, that’s exactly what happened in Bucha.

Serhiy Kaplishny is a coroner in Bucha who has collected more than 100 bodies since the invasion. Only 15 died of natural causes while the rest were killed by gunshot wounds.

New York Times:

By the end of the day, back in town, he said that he had picked up about 30 more bodies in a white van. Thirteen of them were men whose hands had been tied and who had been shot at close range in the head. He said he did not know the circumstances of their deaths but believed, based on their apparently recent deaths, that they were prisoners killed before the Russian Army withdrew.

“They were civilians,” Mr. Kaplishny said, showing cellphone pictures of dead men in civilian clothes with their hands bound behind their backs and in one case in the front.

The UN Human Rights agency says that evidence from Bucha indicates Russian forces “directly targeted” civilians. But Ukrainians are saying that some of the Russian conscripts — older and perhaps more experienced — treated them decently.

Galina Levitskaya, 60, a retired teacher, said she had no negative experiences with the enlisted Russian soldiers who patrolled the town. It was her impression, she said, that they had orders to be polite and to share their meal rations, which they did. “They helped us carry bags,” she said.

A unit of ethnic Chechen fighters, who were bearded and wore black uniforms, had searched door to door, she said. If an occupant opened the door, she said, the fighters generally just searched for weapons and left. If nobody opened the door, she said, they would kick it in to search.

“They shot everyone they saw,” said one Bucha resident.

The Russians claim that Bucha is a psyops campaign by Ukraine and the United States to whip up anti-Russian fervor.


The West says the dead civilians are evidence of war crimes. Reuters saw dead bodies in the town of Bucha but could not independently verify who was responsible for the killings.

“It is a simply a well-directed – but tragic – show,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. “It is a forgery aimed at denigrating the Russian army – and it will not work.”

“We once again urge the international community: detach yourself from such emotional perceptions and think with your head,” Peskov said. “Compare the facts and understand what a monstrous forgery we are dealing with.”

The Ukrainian population was being urged to resist the invaders. It’s pretty clear that this is what happened in Bucha. The civilian population carried out ambushes, set booby traps, and killed as many Russians as possible. Meanwhile, homemade drones built by a mostly amateur hobby group dropped small bombs on Russian soldiers. Enraged Russian troops took their anger and frustration out on civilians as they searched for invisible enemies hiding behind every door and lurking in every alley.

It doesn’t excuse the atrocities. There is no excuse for butchering unarmed civilians. But it gives the executions and murders perspective that most Western media isn’t examining.

For those who are buying into the Russian claim of psychological warfare being practiced on gullible Westerners, believe what you want — and keep denying reality.



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