Roger Waters has always been outspoken about his politics and his views have not endeared him to supporters of Israel (he was just branded as an antisemite by old bandmate David Gilmour and his wife, Polly) or those who believe Ukraine is the victim of an illegal invasion by an aggressive and imperialist Russia.
Let’s focus on that second point for a moment. If you saw Waters’ recent tour, you’ll know that it was very political, taking aim at the evils of Western politicians. To him, they’re all imperialists and war criminals. Depending on your politicals, you can maybe find some common ground.
However, missing from any of his screeds were any mentions of authoritarian leaders like Xi Jinping of China, North Korea’s Kim Jong-il, fascist-leaning Viktor Orban of Hungary, Venezuela’s oppressive Nicholas Maduro, trigger-happy Rodrigo Duarte of the Philippines, and others of their ilk. Oh, and there was no mention at all of Vladimir Putin. None.
Waters believes that Russia was provoked into this war by the encroachment of NATO towards Russia’s borders. He pays no attention to anything Putin has said about rebuilding the Russian empire, how Putin has brutalized Georgia and Chechnya, and has engaged in cyberwarfare against countries and companies. He’s also systematically had his opponents murdered, exiled, or imprisoned.
Waters repeated this bullshit to the United Nations Security Council on Wednesday (February 8) in a 16-minute speech. And who asked him to do this? Russia!
I quote Waters: “The invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation, I condemn it in the strongest possible terms. Also, the Russian invasion of Ukraine was not unprovoked, so I also condemn the provocateur in the strongest possible terms. There, that’s got that out of the way.”
He then made some sort of call for peace–a peace that would be to Russia’s advantage.
“Today our brief is the possibility of peace in the Ukraine with special reference to the arming of the key regime by third parties. … So what do the voices of millions have to say? They say, thank you for hearing us today. We are many who do not share in the profits of the war industry. We do not willingly raise our sons and daughters to provide fodder for your cannon. In our opinion, the only sensible cause of action today is to call for an immediate ceasefire in Ukraine. No ifs, no buts, no ands, not one more Ukrainian or Russian life is to be spent, not one. They are all precious in our eyes.
My mother country England is, thank God, an empire no more. But in that country now there is a new catchphrase: Eat or heat. You can’t do both. It’s a cry echoing around the whole of Europe. Apparently the only thing the powers think we can all (do) is perpetual war. How crazy is that? So from the 4 billion or so brothers and sisters in this voiceless majority, who together with the millions in the international anti-war movement represent a huge constituency, enough is enough. We demand change. President Biden, President Putin, President Zelensky, USA, NATO, Russia, the EU, all of you please change course now and agree to a ceasefire in Ukraine today. That of course, will only be the starting point, but everything extrapolates from that starting point.”
Waters’ speech was panned by just about every member of the Security Council (even Albania). Who gave him high marks? Russia’s Deputy U.N. Ambassador, Dmitry Polyanskiy.
By the way, Waters also thinks that China has the right to assert its claim over Taiwan.
Oh, and he’s re-recorded Dark Side of the Moon to his own personal specifications. Seriously