How trustworthy is the best-selling book about Ukraine’s war?

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Date: Saturday, 09 September 2023

How trustworthy is the best-selling book about Ukraine’s war?

Eric Zuesse (blogs at

According to Amazon, this is the best-selling book on Ukraine’s war:

The Russo-Ukrainian War: The Return of History Hardcover – May 16, 2023

by Serhii Plokhy (Author). He’s the Mykhailo Hrushevsky Professor of Ukrainian History at Harvard and the director of the university's Ukrainian Research Institute.

Here is the “Inside the book” feature, samples that end with the book’s complete Index, so that you can see how much attention is given to each of the names that are mentioned in it.

Here are from two leading reader-reviews of the work:


4.6 4.6 out of 5 stars    228 ratings


5.0 out of 5 stars 

Extremely valuable to understand how this war came to be and what's at play

Reviewed in the United States on August 27, 2023

Verified Purchase

5.0 out of 5 stars 

This book greatly complements 'The Gates of Europe' as it covers in more depth what happened after the dissolution of the USSR, up until February 2023. This book is extremely valuable to all those interested in understanding how this war came to be and what's really at play.

I found it particularly interesting to learn how the democracy movement evolved in such different ways, in Russia and Ukraine since the fall of the Soviet Union. While Russia became increasingly autocratic, ending its attempt at democracy pretty early, Ukraine endured a painful transformation into a vibrant democracy that resisted multiple attempts from Russia to make of it it's vassal state. Revolution after revolution, the Ukrainian nation became stronger and more irreversibly independent.

The book covers the early political and cultural tug of war, that culminated in the defeat of Russia's interests during the Revolution of Dignity (aka Euromaidan), and their invasion of Crimea and Donbas. The book covers how the Ukrainian army fought back and reclaimed territory, up until Russia recommitted forces and defeated them, forcing them to the table to get the Minsk agreements. If you were ever interested in the context, substance and interests affected by those treaties, then you should read this part.

The second half of the book gets into the Russian invasion of Ukraine in Feb 2022.


4.0 out of 5 stars


Reviewed in the United States on June 1, 2023

Verified Purchase

This is a timely book about the first year of the Russo-Ukrainian war. It stops at about February of this year. I liked the detailed information about how the military operations went, but it was the political-diplomatic developments that were really fascinating. The author goes into depth about the effects of the war on China, Turkey, Europe, Russia and the U.S. The author is Ukrainian and makes no secret that his view point is biased.

I felt the author did not pay enough attention to the intellectual, emotional effect Alexander Dugin has on Putin. Putin's program according to the author is the continuation of Russia's imperial past from that of the tsars through the communist regime of the U.S.S.R. This is true in general because Russia has not had its moment of being a mighty imperial power like Great Britain, France and the U.S. It is also true that Dugin is supplying the intellectual and emotional frame work for Putin's vision of imperial power.

The author is a historian not a political scientist so his ignoring the influence of Dugin is understandable.

The real reason for the war is never stated. Everyone including the author seems to believe Putin's lie that he is afraid of NATO because the West will invade Russia. Putin is afraid of NATO but not because it will invade Russia, but because it will prevent Russia from invading neighboring countries and annexing them. …


Publisher:  W. W. Norton & Company (May 16, 2023)

Language:  English

Hardcover:  400 pages

list price $30. Amazon price $18.34

INDEX (Here are the listings in the Index for 7 persons who were key to the overthrow of Ukraine’s President Yanukovych in February 2014, and the pages on which those persons are mentioned):

Beletsky (or Biletsky) (head of Ukraine's nazi Azov Battalion): nothing

Nuland, Victoria (planner and organizer of the 2014 U.S. coup in Ukraine): 96

Obama, Barack (the person who chose Nuland to do this): 90, 107, 273-77

Parubiy (the Ukrainian nazi who was known as the “Commandant of the Maidan”): nothing

Pyatt (Nuland’s chief subordinate on the coup): nothing

Yarosh (Parubiy’s chief subordinate on the coup): nothing

Yatsenyuk (Nuland’s appointee to lead Ukraine’s interim government): 98, 114


Investigative historian Eric Zuesse’s new book, AMERICA’S EMPIRE OF EVIL: Hitler’s Posthumous Victory, and Why the Social Sciences Need to Change, is about how America took over the world after World War II in order to enslave it to U.S.-and-allied billionaires. Their cartels extract the world’s wealth by control of not only their ‘news’ media but the social ‘sciences’ — duping the public.

ሓይልን ጽባቐን ኤርትራዊት ጓል ኣንስተይቲ - መንእሰያት ደቂ ኣንስትዮ ሳዋ | Walta EDF TV show for July 14, 2024 - ERi-TV

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