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Why did we get the collapse of the USSR so wrong ?

News Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Recommended Links The Rape of Russia Great Plunder of Russia after the dissolution of the USSR Brain Drain
Color revolutions Russian White Revolution of 2011-2012 Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism American Imperialism, Transnational Capitalist Class and Globalization of Capitalism Fake News scare and US NeoMcCartyism Russian Ukrainian Gas Wars
Comprador vs. national bourgeoisie Fifth Column of Neoliberal Globalization Nulandgate Net hamsters Professor Steven Cohen Obama: a yet another Neocon
Neoliberal Compradors Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Khodorkovsky case Boris Berezovsky Magnitsky case Navalny's Saga
Neoliberal Brainwashing: Journalism In the Service of the Powerful Few Diplomacy by deception America and the Imperial Project Demonization of Putin Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Nemtsov assassination
Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA The Rape of Russia, Testimony of Anne Williamson Before the House Banking Committee Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17? From EuroMaidan to EuroAnschluss Cold War II Suppression of Russian language and culture in Ukraine
Miraculous metamorphosis of Russian crooks on crossing Western border Comprador vs. national bourgeoisie America and the Imperial Project Most important anti-Russian propaganda campaigns The Deep State Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners"
Russian foreign policy Anatol Leiven on American Messianism Pussi Riot Provocation American Exceptionalism "Fight with Corruption" as a smoke screen for neoliberal penetration into host countries MSM Sochi Bashing Rampage
Soft propaganda The Real War on Reality Economics of Peak Energy Russophobic quotes from famous Russian Liberasts Humor Etc

Collapse of the USSR was the part of triumphal march of neoliberal around the globe. Neoliberalism as Tristyism for the rick managed to displace Marxsim as the dominant ideology for almost 50 years (from approximately 1960 to 2008.

Amazingly bad timing of the collapse resulted in severe economic rape of Russia and post-soviet republics in best traditions of neocolonialism. The standard of living of Russian and Ukrainian population outside of top 10% dropped considerably and for Ukraine actually never recovered to pre-collapse level. For Russia briefly recovered and  exceeded Soviet level, but started to drop after 2008 and then collapse of oil price in 2014.  With the current exchange rate of 60 rubles per dollar average income of ordinary Russians is not impressive and Ukrainian population dropped to Central African level of poverty (less than $2 a day).  Actually for Russia it was simply a miracle that they managed to recover after such an economic rape at all.

And it is funny (and shows the power of neoliberal propaganda) how many Russians and Ukrainians are still convinced by the Hollywood movies that everybody in the US and Europe has opportunities to earn a decent living and lives a better life.  They never heard about Wal-mart single mom.

That means that collapse of the USSR was caused by the combination of several major factors qnd well as bad  timing of Gorbachov reforms and incompetence of Gorbachov as a politician. 

Among major factors (which have complex interplay with one another) we can mention:

  1. Rising neoliberalism as a new social system that displaced both New Deal capitalism (Scandinavian model) and Soviet bolshevism.
  2. Polishing the techniques of color revolutions and growing power and coordination of Western intelligence agencies. Especially in propaganda war area and well as bribing  certain circles of "intelligencia" and government officials.
  3. Discreditation of Bolshevism both as ideology and economic system. 
  4. Stagnations of soviet economy and inability even to maintain the standard of living of population which started sliding generating discontent. Which also demonstrated in stagnation of soviet science.  Many soviet scientific magazines deteriorated to junk level.  The key source of new technological and scentic information became western magazines.
  5. Bad  timing of Gorbachov reforms and incompetence of Gorbachov as a politician. 
  6. Growing influence of Western culture on the USSR which started with Elvis Presley and Beatles.  Especially Hollywood (and generally Western) films and pop music.
  7. Fossilization and degeneration of ruling elite (aka "nomenklatura")
  8. Growing effectiveness of Western sanctions and politics of economic isolation of the USSR with Nixon china  policy.  Which increased the level of stagnation of soviet economics and deprive the USSR of technological achievement of the West, which generated discontent of population.
  9. Saudi inspired oil price drop, which deprives the USSR of currency revenue.
  10. Formation of internal neoliberal "fifth-column with the in the USSR, including large part of KGB apparatus. Probably not without help of major intelligence agencies.
  11. PC and communications revolution. Proliferation of laser printers, Personal computers with modems and appearance of first network such as FIDOnet  (based on  regular phone lines), BBC and, gradually Internet (first in the form of UUCP)  that made maintenance of "hermetic" society like the USSR impossible.
  12. Excessive power of military-industrial complex in soviet nomenklatura resulting is excessive spending on defense and the maintenance of "Soviet block."

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[Nov 10, 2018] How Secession from the Soviet Union Created Booming Economies and Innovative Government Zero Hedge

Notable quotes:
"... With all due cynical respect... I find it highly ironic that some of the biggest money launderers and Mafiosi are Baltic banks. The hilarity never ends. ..."
"... Full scale bull ****. No single former Soviet bloc country get into economic level of pre-Berlin wall fall. They are done. ..."
Nov 10, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

DoctorFix , 46 minutes ago link

With all due cynical respect... I find it highly ironic that some of the biggest money launderers and Mafiosi are Baltic banks. The hilarity never ends.

Moribundus , 1 hour ago link

Here is classic: GDP PPP per capita. What to pay attention.

#1, After 30 years and joining EU and NATO there is no difference in former Soviet bloc. Just looks like Russia is greatest profiteer. Now those parasites are chained to west.

#2, countries of former Soviet bloc are in better shape than countries that were in sphere of western imperialism. Especially look at countries where USA imperialism worked since 1823 Monroe's doctrine. Chart shows that in 200 years USA was not able to achieve much progress despite permanent military interventions and political influence.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita

Moribundus , 1 hour ago link

Latvia, a disappearing nation

https://www.politico.eu/article/latvia-a-disappearing-nation-migration-population-decline/

Moribundus , 1 hour ago link

Full scale bull ****. No single former Soviet bloc country get into economic level of pre-Berlin wall fall. They are done.

Europe's Depopulation Time Bomb Is Ticking in the Baltics

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-20/europe-s-depopulation-time-bomb-is-ticking-in-the-baltics

Cohen-cide-nce , 2 hours ago link

The balts have become them most libtarded cucks in the EU. They all need to get nuked. Bunch of atheist-feminist faggots.

Dick Buttkiss , 1 hour ago link

Due punishment, no doubt, for being on the cutting edge of technology-driven economic development and personal freedom.

From what planet/galaxy/universe does your information emanate?

Trader200K , 2 hours ago link

As much as I like the idea of taking my state to Estonia status, too many winner-take-all politicians and weak thinkers to recognize that new borders would solve lots and lots of problems.

Socialists are clearly smart, but in actuality just simple evil, immoral thieves. They will be unlikely to support any secession because they know their enemies are the source of their lucre.

Balkanization, what little there will be, will most likely come after we are drug into WWIII and we are back to a 1700's subsistence existence.

A pessimist is never disappointed, but I will happily take an optimist's surprise if people just stop and live and let live.

Flankspeed60 , 3 hours ago link

If at first you don't secede.............

Dick Buttkiss , 2 hours ago link

.............. try, try to "Unchain America" next July 4. What better way to celebrate Independence Day than with a joining of hands across the land, if not to secede, then to affirm our right to, one state at a time?

Are one in 66 Americans not prepared to do so?

Salzburg1756 , 3 hours ago link

So... Diversity is their strength? Or was I misinformed?

Dick Buttkiss , 3 hours ago link

It's 2,790 miles from New York to Los Angeles, which is 14,731,200 feet. At three feet per person, it would take around 4,910,400 people -- less than 1/66th of the US population -- to make a human chain like the three Balkan states did.

Count me in.

[Nov 02, 2018] A color revolution in the making: Vladimir Kara-Murza and Keith Gessen at Columbia University

Notable quotes:
"... Along with Nemtsov, Kara-Murza was an early backer of the US congressional passage of the Magnitsky Act in 2012, which targets Russian oligarchs and officials who support the Putin regime and are accused of corruption and human rights abuses. ..."
"... Since 2014, Kara-Murza has worked for the Open Russia Foundation, which was founded by Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who rose to become one of the most powerful and richest oligarchs of Russia during the 1990s and was imprisoned by Putin in 2003. ..."
"... Gessen also teaches at Columbia University's Journalism School and is the brother of Masha Gessen, who has been heavily involved in the anti-Putin media propaganda for many years. ..."
Nov 02, 2018 | www.wsws.org

On Wednesday, October 17, Vladimir Kara-Murza, a leading Russian liberal oppositionist, was interviewed by Keith Gessen, editor of the n+1 magazine, in an event hosted by Columbia University's Harriman Institute for the Study of Eurasia, Russia and Eastern Europe. The event was a stark testimony to the advanced preparations for a US-backed "color revolution" in Russia, i.e., an imperialist-orchestrated and funded movement of a section of the oligarchy and upper middle class to topple the Putin regime, similar to those that have taken place in Ukraine and Georgia.

Vladimir Kara-Murza is one of the many shadowy figures of Russian politics who, while little known to most people inside or outside Russia, are playing a key role in directing and supporting the US anti-Russia policy and the course of the Russian pro-US liberal opposition. The son of Vladimir Kara-Murza, Sr., who was a major figure in the oligarch-controlled Russian media under Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s, Vladimir Kara-Murza, Jr. worked for many years as the right-hand man of Boris Nemtsov, one of Yeltsin's key allies in the 1990s and a right-wing political opponent of Putin, who was assassinated in 2015 under murky circumstances.

Along with Nemtsov, Kara-Murza was an early backer of the US congressional passage of the Magnitsky Act in 2012, which targets Russian oligarchs and officials who support the Putin regime and are accused of corruption and human rights abuses. He has lobbied for the adoption of similar legislation by governments throughout the world. Through this work, Kara-Murza also became close to the late John McCain, one of Washington's foremost supporters of "color revolutions" throughout the territory of the former Soviet Union. In August, Kara-Murza served as a pallbearer at McCain's funeral, along with former Vice President Joe Biden and the actor Warren Beatty.

Since 2014, Kara-Murza has worked for the Open Russia Foundation, which was founded by Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who rose to become one of the most powerful and richest oligarchs of Russia during the 1990s and was imprisoned by Putin in 2003.

In short, Kara-Murza has been at the center of the operations for a color-revolution-type movement in Russia for years. And this is precisely what he was invited to speak on with the self-styled leftist and Russia expert Keith Gessen, founding editor of the n+1 magazine, one of the most popular magazines among pseudo-left circles. (Gessen also teaches at Columbia University's Journalism School and is the brother of Masha Gessen, who has been heavily involved in the anti-Putin media propaganda for many years.)

The event started with Keith Gessen asking Kara-Murza about the assassination of Boris Nemtsov which the latter, of course, attributed to the Kremlin. For most of the discussion, however, Kara-Murza detailed his involvement in the preparations for a color revolution in Russia.

Kara-Murza insisted that "the history of Russia teaches us that big political changes in our country can start quickly and unexpectedly." He referred to both the 1905 Revolution and the February Revolution of 1917, which, as Kara-Murza pointed out, even took Lenin by surprise, and then the collapse of the USSR "in three days" in 1991. "This is how things happen in Russia", he insisted, and "the problem with this is that nobody is prepared. We [at the Open Russia Foundation] see it as our mission to begin those preparations for future change now. We cannot afford to not be ready again. Most of the things we do inside of Russia is targeted at preparing for this future transition."

The Open Russia Foundation, he continued, had 25 regional branches and a series of working groups which were already elaborating plans for political reforms and constitutional changes for the post-Putin period. Furthermore, they were focusing on "work with the new generation, the people who will be in charge of Russia" through training and education programs. Lastly, they were doing "international" work, which he himself was in charge of, which included "outreach" directed, again, at preparing the "future transition."

When later asked by an audience member how he saw the future of Russia in the next few decades, he declared that this change would come not within the next few decades, but within the next few years.

When he was asked from the audience whether the latest pension reform, which is opposed by over 90 percent of the population, could trigger the kind of "sudden change" he was expecting, Kara-Murza said: "It could but it doesn't have to. There is always the argument that it's [going to be] something of a socio-economic nature. Actually, if we look at the two decades of Putin, the peak of the protests was in December 2011 when the middle class was booming. It was about dignity, it had nothing do to with social issues. The trigger will not be necessarily economic."

He continued, "The only really shaky point [for Putin] was when so many people felt insulted that the government was wiping its feet over them. I think it's going to be something like that. A color revolution of dignity," like the events in Ukraine in 2014. In other words, what Kara-Murza and the Open Russia Foundation are working on is the promotion of a right-wing middle-class movement similar to the Maidan in Ukraine, which would provide the basis for a coup to topple the current government.

The key figures and mechanisms for such a "color revolution" were also addressed at some length. Keith Gessen asked how Kara-Murza viewed the campaign of the blogger Alexei Navalny, who, as the WSWS has written, is a far-right, pro-US figure who cloaks his right-wing program behind murky phrases about corruption. Just how fraudulent and politically calculated this focus is became clear in the discussion when Keith Gessen asked whether Navalny's focus on corruption as the center of his political platform was "a winning platform." Kara-Murza responded: "Yes, it is. Corruption is such a widely understandable issue. It's an issue that everybody is aware of."

In the discussion, a graduate student from Harriman asked whether the Open Russia Foundation had a "particular road map" for what to do when the "sudden event" Kara-Murza expected actually occurred. Kara-Murza replied: "If there were a model, it would be something like the Polish roundtable [of 1989]. The way we want a transition to happen in Russia is peaceful and smooth. We don't want a violent revolution. Russia has had enough revolutions. The problem is that the people who are in power today are doing everything for a revolution to occur."

Then, he went into the figures who would be included in such a roundtable. "Of course, Boris Nemtsov would have been at the roundtable", but, he assured his audience, there were many others. The figures he named were: Yevgeni Roizman, the mayor of Yekaterinburg, who is a notorious far-right-winger, with deep ties to the local mafia. In Russia, he became known above all through his alleged "drug" relief program, which has involved heavy physical abuse of drug addicts.

He also named Galina Shirshina, a member of the liberal opposition party Yabloko (which Nemtsov led until his assassination) as well as Lev Shlosberg, a local politician in Pskov who is also a leading member of "Yabloko." Finally, Kara-Murza named Dmitri Gudkov, who is heading the opposition "Party of Changes" with Ksenia Sobchak, the daughter of Putin's mentor Anatoly Sobchak, who ran as a presidential candidate this year .

"Navalny and Khodorkovsky would obviously also be at the roundtable", Kara-Murza added. When Gessen asked "What about the Communists?" Kara-Murza said that Sergei Udaltsov, the leader of the Stalinist and National Bolshevik "Left Front", may also hope for a seat at the roundtable. "We have very different views, but we have a good personal relationship. He's a decent human being, politically and on a human level."

Then, he added, "there are also many nationalists who are not controlled by the Kremlin" and who could join the roundtable. Throughout the event, Kara-Murza repeated that he and his allies were the true patriots and Russian nationalists, as opposed to Putin and the oligarchs and officials around him. "I just don't want to bore everyone with a long list of names," he said, as he concluded his enumeration of prospective of roundtable participants.

Like all Russian liberal oppositionists, Kara-Murza makes a hue and cry about rigged elections under Putin. Yet at no point did he even mention the possibility of an election before or after such a "roundtable," the participants of which have most evidently already been discussed and set.

There could hardly be a more open statement about the complicity of the so called opposition forces in Russian in a premeditated, US-backed plot to overthrow the Putin regime and install another, more pro-US, right-wing government in its place.

Kara-Murza speaks for a section of the oligarchy which not only seeks to gain control over the social and economic wealth of Russia, but also fears that a continuation of the Putin regime will threaten not only Russia's geopolitical position, but also social revolution. They see their main goal in making sure that a reshuffling within the oligarchy and upper middle class takes place, to assure both a reorientation of Russian foreign policy more directly in line with the interests of imperialism, and the ongoing suppression of the working class.

The complete indifference toward the implications of these policies for the masses of working people in Russia was at full display when Kara-Murza defended the process of capitalist restoration and the 1990s as time when Russia was actually make headway on the world stage: Russia was included in the G8 and finally internationally recognized, Kara-Murza stressed.

He contemptuously dismissed any criticism of the 1990s by referring to this decade as the "supposedly horrible 90s." The fact that the Russian economy experienced the worst collapse recorded in modern history for peacetime; that life expectancy plummeted, that hundreds of thousands committed suicide and were driven into substance abuse and that workers were going without pay for months and years, all of this is evidently of no concern to him.

Underlining the recklessness of the whole operation, the question of the potential consequences of a "color revolution" was not even raised. But anyone who looks at the past three decades of US foreign policy knows where this type of intervention of leads: civil war, ethnic strife, dictatorial regimes, and decades of economic, social and economic crisis. In the case of Russia, a "color revolution" would most likely mean the violent break-up of the Russian Federation -- many opposition leaders in fact argue for different borders of Russia. It would, moreover, raise the very immediate danger of a nuclear catastrophe: what if a section of the military resorts to the vast nuclear arsenal of Russia to defend its interests? And what will the US military and NATO do if a color revolution underway in Russia suddenly threatens to go astray? Will they intervene directly militarily?

The involvement of Keith Gessen in this dubious event is revealing. At no point did he raise something akin to a critical question. His role was nothing but to ask polite questions and provide Kara-Murza with a platform. A self-styled leftist, Gessen has translated and published the writings of Kirill Medvedev, a leading figure in the Russian Socialist Movement (RSM), a Pabloite formation in Russia. This year, he published a novel "A Terrible Country" in which he, yet again, promotes the Russian pseudo-left. In 2014, the RSM fully backed the far-right coup in Kiev. In Russia itself, the RSM has long shifted toward full support for Alexei Navalny's right-wing "anti-corruption campaign," ignoring or dismissing his history of support for Russian fascism and racism. The role of Gessen in this event is emblematic of the role of these forces as handmaidens US and European imperialism.

It was befitting for Columbia University's Harriman Institute to host this event: the first interdisciplinary Russia institute to be formed after the beginning of the Cold War, it has historically been associated with US imperialist plotting against first the Soviet Union and then Russia. To this day, the Harriman Institute, which is a non-profit, functions primarily as a think tank as well as an educational and recruiting center for Washington's foreign policy establishment and the CIA.

For much of its existence, the Harriman Institute was dominated by the figure and work of Zbigniew Brzezinski who, for over half a century, played a central role in elaborating the world strategy and justifying the war crimes of US imperialism. One of Brzezinski's political trademarks was his advocacy for fostering political opposition and insurrections in the Soviet Union, to undermine the regime and thus fight what he saw as one of the US's main competitors for the control of Eurasia. The "color revolution" strategy of US imperialism since 1991 stands in precisely this tradition. Now as then, far-right forces within the elites and fake left tendencies are the props of imperialism "on the ground."

Events like the one at Columbia reveal much about the state of world politics. "Color revolutions" which will impact the lives of hundreds of millions and threaten civil and all-out nuclear war, are being discussed and plotted behind the exclusive doors of an Ivy League institution with an audience of some 50 people, most of whom are graduate students and professors who, one may assume, either already are on the payroll of the CIA and the State Department or seeking to get there.

The Putin regime offers no alternative to these imperialist machinations. Like the sections of the oligarchy that Kara-Murza speaks for, Putin and his cronies have emerged out of and enriched themselves on the basis of the destruction of the Soviet Union which was carried by the Stalinist bureaucracy hand-in-gloves with imperialism. It considers not imperialism, but the Russian working class to be its main enemy, and, hence, responds to every imperialist provocation is a response of desperate attempts to find a deal with imperialism, largely behind closed doors, and the promotion of nationalism and militarism at home.

This sinister event is a warning to the international working class about the advanced preparations for the next step in the efforts of US imperialism to topple the Putin regime and bring the resources of Russia under its direct control: it is high time for workers both in the US and in Russia to intervene in politics on an independent basis to put an end to these dangerous conspiracies of imperialism through the struggle for socialism.

[Oct 28, 2018] The Jewish Ethnic Nexus of Bill Browder' Financial Operations The Occidental Observer

Jul 27, 2018 | www.theoccidentalobserver.net

A tweetstorm consisting of quotes from Israel Shamir's excellent article on Bill Browder showing how he operated in an entirely Jewish milieu. Jewish ethnic networking is alive and well in the twenty-first century.

Kevin MacDonald @TOOEdit Jul 27, 2018

What makes Browder so powerful? He invests in politicians. This probably a uniquely Jewish quality: Jews outspend everybody in contributions to political figures, unz.com/ishamir/the-go...

The Untouchable Mr. Browder?

The Browder affair is a heady upper-class Jewish cocktail of money, spies, politicians and international crime.

unz.com

Kevin MacDonald @TOOEdit

Russian NTV channel reported that Browder lavishly financed the US lawmakers. Here they present alleged evidence of money transfers: some hundred thousand dollars was given by Browder's structures officially to the senators and congressmen in order to promote the Magnitsky Act
12:04 PM-Jul 27, 2018

Q? 15 See Kevin MacDonald's other Tweets

Kevin MacDonald @TOOEdit

Much bigger sums were transferred via good services of Brothers Ziff, mega-rich Jewish American businessmen, said the researchers in two articles published on the Veteran News Network and in The Huffington Post.

12:05 PM-Jul 27, 2018

Kevin MacDonald @TOOEdit Jul 27, 2018 # Replying to @TOOEdit

"Beneficiary of Browder's generosity is Ben Cardin, a Democrat from Maryland, the engine behind Magnitsky Act. Cardin is a fervent supporter of Hillary Clinton, also a cold warrior of good standing. More to a point, Cardin is a prominent member of Israel Lobby.

Kevin MacDonald @TOOEdit

"Browder affair is a heady upper-class Jewish cocktail of money, spies, politicians and international crime. Almost all involved figures appear to be Jewish, not only Browder, Brothers Ziff and Ben Cardin." Lists other Jews he was involved with: Robert Maxwell, Safra, Berezovsky,

12:11 PM-Jul 27, 2018

[Oct 27, 2018] The Legal Battle Behind the Trump Tower Meeting by Ken Dilanian

We say Browder, but we mean MI6. He was a part of larger plan concocted by US intelligence agencies to decimate Russia after the dissolution of the USSR. Of which Harvard mafia played even more important role. The fact that he gave up his U.S. citizenship in 1997 points to his association with MI6.
The level of distortions the US neoliberal MSM operated with in case of Magnitsky (starting with the widely repeated and factually incorrect claim that he was a lawyers, in create a sympathy; their effort to portrait shady accountant involved in tax fraud for Browder, as a fighter for justice should be described in a separate chapter on any modem book on the power of propaganda; this is simply classic ) is compatible with lies and distortions of Skripal affair and point of strong interest ion intelligence services in both.
Browder and Magnistsky affair really demonstrate that as for foreign events we already live "Matrix environment" of artificial reality created by MSM and controlled by intelligence agencies and foreign policy establishment; and that ordinary people are forced into artificial reality with little or no chance to escape.
Notable quotes:
"... Prevezon's American legal team alleged that Browder's story was full of holes -- and that the U.S. and other governments had relied on Browder's version without checking it. ..."
"... The chief American investigator, Todd Hyman of the Department of Homeland Security, testified in a deposition that much of the evidence in the government's complaint came from Browder and his associates. He also said the government had been unable to independently investigate some of Browder's claims. ..."
"... In court documents, Prevezon's lawyers alleged that Magnitsky was jailed not because he was a truth-seeker -- but because he was helping Browder's companies in tax evasion. ..."
"... The Prevezon attorneys charged that Browder "lied," and "manipulated" evidence to cover up his own tax fraud. ..."
"... The story was "contrived and skillfully sold by William F. Browder to politicians here and abroad to thwart his arrest for a tax fraud conviction in Russia," says a 2015 federal court filing by one of Prevezon's lawyers, Mark Cymrot of BakerHostetler. ..."
"... A Russian-born filmmaker named Andrei Nekrasov made a similar set of arguments in a docudrama released last year. Neither Prevezon nor the Russian government had a role in funding or making the film, both parties say, though Veselnitskaya and Akhmetshin helped promote it. ..."
Jul 24, 2017 | www.nbcnews.com

As Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya tells it, she met with Donald Trump Jr. and other Trump aides in New York last summer to press her case against a widely accepted account of Russian malfeasance, one that underpins a set of sanctions against Russians.

It's a cause Veselnitskaya has been pursuing for years. So, too, has Rinat Akhmetshin, the colorful Russian-born American lobbyist she brought with her to Trump Tower.

Trump Jr., who agreed to the June 2016 meeting at the request of a Russian business associate with a promise of dirt on Hillary Clinton , has said he didn't find much to interest him in the presentation. And little wonder: The subject is a dense and tangled web, hinging on a complex case that led Congress to pass what is known as the Magnitsky Act. The law imposed sanctions on individual Russians accused of human rights violations. It has nothing to do with Clinton.

The Trump Tower meeting has become the latest flashpoint in the ongoing investigation into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia's election interference . The topic of the meeting, many observers have said, is almost beside the point.

But the substance of what the pair of Russian advocates say they came to discuss has a fascinating backstory.

It's an epic international dispute -- one that has pitted the grandson of a former American Communist who made a fortune as a capitalist in Russia against a Russian leader who pines for the glory days of his country's Communist past.

In a cinematic twist, one person on the side advocated by Vladimir Putin, Veselnitskaya and Akhmetshin is a former American newspaper reporter turned investigator named Glenn Simpson. He is the same Glenn Simpson whose firm, Fusion GPS, helped craft the controversial dossier alleging that the Trump campaign colluded with Russian intelligence .

That dossier, published by Buzzfeed , made other, more salacious allegations about Trump, and FBI Director James Comey briefed the Republican about it before he took office. The dossier is not favorable to Putin and the Russian government.

Simpson's role on both sides of the Putin divide is set to be explored in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday examining the Justice Department's requirements for foreign lobbying disclosures.

Due to testify at the hearing is Simpson's longtime opponent in the Magnitsky dispute, William Browder, an American-born hedge-fund investor who made millions investing in post-Soviet Russia and gave up his U.S. citizenship in 1997.

Simpson's lawyer said he would defy a subpoena to appear Wednesday because he was on vacation, and that he would decline to answer questions anyway, citing his right against self-incrimination.

Browder, whose grandfather Earl led the American Communist Party, accuses Simpson of peddling falsehoods as an agent of the Russian government. The law firm Simpson worked with on the case accused Browder in court papers of perpetrating a web of lies. Both men dispute the allegations.

The Death of Sergei Magnitsky

The story begins with the November 2009 death of Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian tax accountant who was working for Browder, and who later died in prison .

Browder's account of Magnitsky's death triggered international outrage. According to Browder, Magnitsky was a lawyer who had been investigating a theft of $230 million in tax rebates paid to Browder's companies in Russia. Browder says his companies had been taken over illegally and without his knowledge by corrupt Russian officials.

Browder says Magnitsky was arrested as a reprisal by those same corrupt officials, and then was tortured and beaten to death. Browder presented documents suggesting that some officials who benefited from the alleged fraud purchased property abroad.

That account led Congress to pass the so-called Magnitsky Act in 2012, imposing sanctions on the Russian officials who were alleged to have violated Magnitsky's human rights.

The Russian government soon imposed a ban on American adoptions of Russian children, ostensibly for other reasons but done in response, many experts say, to the Magnitsky sanctions.

Forty-four Russians are currently on the Magnitsky sanctions list maintained by the U.S. Treasury Department, meaning their U.S. assets are frozen and they are not allowed to travel to the U.S.

Once a Putin supporter, Browder became one of the Russian leader's most ardent foes, spearheading a campaign to draw international attention to the Magnitsky case. He and his employees at Hermitage Capital Management presented information to governments, international bodies and major news organizations.

Browder's advocacy marks a shift from 2004, when, as one of Russia's leading foreign investors, he praised Putin so vigorously that he was labeled Putin's "chief cheerleader" by an analyst in a Washington Post article. Browder has said that Magnitsky's death spurred him to reexamine his view of Putin.

The State Department, lawmakers of both parties and the Western news media have described the Magnitsky case in a way that tracks closely with Browder's account. Browder's assertions are consistent with the West's understanding of the Putin government -- an authoritarian regime that has been widely and credibly accused of murdering journalists and political opponents.

In 2013, the Manhattan U.S. attorney's office sued a Russian company, accusing it of laundering some of the proceeds of the fraud Magnitsky allegedly uncovered. The complaint incorporated Browder's account about what happened to Magnitsky.

That lawsuit set in motion a process through which that version of events would come under challenge.

The defendant, a company called Prevezon, is owned by Denis Katsyv, who became wealthy while his father was vice governor and transport minister for the Moscow region, according to published reports. The father, Pyotr Katsyv, is now vice president of the state-run Russian Railways. Veselnitskaya has long represented the family.

Prevezon hired a law firm, BakerHostetler, and a team that included a longtime New York prosecutor, John Moscow. Also working on Prevezon's behalf were Simpson, Veselnitskaya and Akhmetshin.

Simpson, a former investigative reporter for the Wall Street Journal, declined to comment.

Simpson also worked with former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele in the creation of the dossier that asserts Trump collusion with Russian election interference. A source close to him said his work on the dossier was kept confidential from his other clients.

The federal civil lawsuit by the Manhattan U.S. attorney against Prevezon was the first opportunity for the U.S. government to publicly present whatever evidence it had to support its legal assertions regarding Magnitsky. It was also an opportunity for the defendants to conduct their own investigation.

Prevezon's American legal team alleged that Browder's story was full of holes -- and that the U.S. and other governments had relied on Browder's version without checking it. Browder and the U.S. government disagreed.

The chief American investigator, Todd Hyman of the Department of Homeland Security, testified in a deposition that much of the evidence in the government's complaint came from Browder and his associates. He also said the government had been unable to independently investigate some of Browder's claims.

In court documents, Prevezon's lawyers alleged that Magnitsky was jailed not because he was a truth-seeker -- but because he was helping Browder's companies in tax evasion.

The Prevezon attorneys charged that Browder "lied," and "manipulated" evidence to cover up his own tax fraud.

The story was "contrived and skillfully sold by William F. Browder to politicians here and abroad to thwart his arrest for a tax fraud conviction in Russia," says a 2015 federal court filing by one of Prevezon's lawyers, Mark Cymrot of BakerHostetler.

A Russian-born filmmaker named Andrei Nekrasov made a similar set of arguments in a docudrama released last year. Neither Prevezon nor the Russian government had a role in funding or making the film, both parties say, though Veselnitskaya and Akhmetshin helped promote it.

[Oct 27, 2018] The Jewish Ethnic Nexus of Bill Browder s Financial Shenanigans

Oct 27, 2018 | russia-insider.com

Onno Frowein a day ago ,

Russians were robbed by Jewish people both domestic & foreign under Yeltsin & president Putin stopped them starting with Yukos & Khodorkovsky & others like Berezovski fled to UK.

A similar history we found in the 30th in Germany which caused the rise of Adolf Hitler & his anti-Semitism ultimately ending in the Holocaust.

Presently we see the same happening in USA where the Democratic establishment in media, industry & banks are fighting back - using any illegal method in the book -against the white 'Waspy' Republicans of Trump. And let's not forget that the US population is for 72% White!! That's NOT racism but pure & simple democracy at work.

[Oct 20, 2018] Russia has a lot of fundamentals going for it, but it is also possible that the mistakes of the past and the pathological hatreds Russia has engendered among the Western and other imperial crazies will strike again. It is big and tempting.

Oct 20, 2018 | www.unz.com

Beckow says: October 18, 2018 at 1:47 pm GMT 400 Words @Anon 2 You are right that Central Europe – or more precisely Eastern Central Europe that includes Austria and parts of Germany – has been blesses with a rare combination of good (great!) geography, enough resources, high quality demographics, good location and weather, fantastic infrastructure and a relatively normal history. Western countries have suffered from a combination of imperial overreach and the inevitable blowback. Westerners have also lost the due diligence habits that make civilizations last. They often seem lazy and unserious.

To the east the lawlessness of the open spaces, harsh weather, and the frequent exposures to the nihilistic Asiatic exotica, have delayed the development of a viable, stable and pleasant way of life. They might get there eventually and I wish them all the best. Russia has a lot of fundamentals going for it, but it is also possible that the mistakes of the past – and the pathological hatreds Russia has engendered among the Western and other imperial crazies – will strike again. It is big and tempting.

The endless attempts to slice the borders of Russia, to shrink it as Brzezinski openly dreamt about, are a foolish thing that might bury us all. A compulsion of obsessive map readers. Russia is at its most destabilising when it is weak. That's when the temptations become too much and some nutcase – or a 'council' of idiots – push and push. Unfortunately for the imperial builders in the West they missed their window of opportunity and they don't seem capable of admitting it. We get ' religious schisms ' just to make sure that no stone remains unturned. It will amount to nothing. They will have to wait for the next dip, there always seems to be one in the ennui filled steppes.

Central Europe (V4+) is about to take over as the most desirable place on the planet. That's why we are seeing the Western attacks on it about some very basic and sound ideas like having borders, homogeneous populations, freedom of speech and peace with neighbours, from the rapidly disintegrating Western world. West cannot stand to live with the mistakes they have made, they want to create a multi-racial, neo-liberal, war mongering cataclysm in order to hide the painful truth of they have done. The demographic suicide of the West is probably irreversible. Macron and Merkel can prance around and preach their silly slogans, but they cannot change the numbers of the ground.

They can still convince some elderly Greek in Istanbul to pour more oil on the fire. What that shows is desperation; if all West has left are these self-defeating intrigues, they don't have much.

[Oct 19, 2018] It appears that somebody tired to create Saudigate out of this incident. This potentially is good news for Iran and Russia. Perhaps not so good for Trump, Saidis and Israel

Oct 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Pft , Oct 18, 2018 12:29:54 AM | link

TheBag @72

The President has authority under the Global Magnitsky Act to impose sanctions against anyone who has committed a human rights violation. Congress has already requested a HR investigation which Trump must act on and report to them within 4 months

It appears my prediction of Saudi gate may be right. This potentially is good news for Iran and Russia. Perhaps not so good for Trump and Saidis. Israel may not be happy. Perhaps his wife's plane troubles were a warning shot to remind him who is boss. Who knows ?

Haleys resignation beginning to make sense now. The House of Trump and House of Saud may soon fall, and Bibi wont be happy losing Trump and MBS. We all know what they are capable of to get things back on track

Why did the media held back on this so for so long?

Yemen (and Gaza).

CGTN & Al-Jazeera are the only global news outlets consistently and regularly reporting on the US facilitated genocides in Yemen and Jewish-occupied Palestine/Gaza.

The never-ending Khashoggi non-mystery mystery keeps Yemen & Gaza out of the Jew-controlled Western Media headlines. Saudi Barbaria and "Israel" are natural allies because each of them is an artificial Western political construct with a cowardly and incompetent military apparatus and an anti-heroic penchant for slaughtering undefended civilians - for psychopathic reasons.
--------
Talking about psychopathy...
Oz's Christian Zionist PM, Sco Mo, is blathering about following Trump's lead and moving Oz's Embassy in "Israel" to Jerusalem. Sc Mo, who has never had an original idea in his life, still hasn't woken up to the fact that Trump's Jerusalem gambit was a trap for Bibi. So it's hilarious that Sco Mo The Unoriginal, is planning to take a flying leap into the same trap!
Anyone with more than half a brain would realise that...
1. No civilised country has followed Trump's lead.
2. Trump can, and will, reverse his (illegal) Jerusalem decision out of a 'new-found respect' for International Law.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 18, 2018 12:14:08 AM | 83

Posted by: JNDillard | Oct 17, 2018 11:59:34 PM | 81


https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-saudi-arabia-payment-20181017-story.html

Posted by: Krollchem | Oct 17, 2018 11:19:22 PM | 79

Whoever is ultimately behind this campaign (which I suspect is a loose association of interest groups spread throughout SA, Turkey, London citi, wall street, whoever) they will not stop until MbS is paraded through the streets in chains or at least his head at the end of a lance. At this point the only question how many days will it take to see his head on a pike?

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 17, 2018 11:24:27 PM | 80

"Their target that night: Anssaf Ali Mayo, the local leader of the Islamist political party Al-Islah. The UAE considers Al-Islah to be the Yemeni branch of the worldwide Muslim Brotherhood, which the UAE calls a terrorist organization. Many experts insist that Al-Islah, one of whose members won the Nobel Peace Prize, is no terror group. They say it's a legitimate political party that threatens the UAE not through violence but by speaking out against its ambitions in Yemen."

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/aramroston/mercenaries-assassination-us-yemen-uae-spear-golan-dahlan

Posted by: Krollchem | Oct 17, 2018 10:26:46 PM | 77

Posted by: Gary Weglarz | Oct 17, 2018 10:22:19 PM | 76

[Oct 12, 2018] US senators demand Magnitsky Act probe, sanctions on Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi disappearance

Notable quotes:
"... What we are seeing now are the consequences of classic imperial over-reach – extending one's power so far and so generally that it hoists itself upon its own petard! The implosion of the USA continues afoot, Hillary Clinton being one of its cheerleaders (according to her recent Amappaling interview). ..."
Oct 12, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

et Al October 11, 2018 at 2:22 am

RT.com: US senators demand Magnitsky Act probe, sanctions on Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi disappearance
https://www.rt.com/usa/440922-trump-letter-senators-khashoggi/

####

All kinds of delicious can proceed from this.

The whole Magnitsky Act thing was supposed to be a convenient tool of western foreign policy cloaked in Human Rights sugar to justify punished the usual suspects ad perpituitam, not for attacking allies. It looks like some US politicians actually think it is about human rights! They'll need to practice their best acting to explain why some are on the list and others aren't, along with compliant media and governments.

What we are seeing now are the consequences of classic imperial over-reach – extending one's power so far and so generally that it hoists itself upon its own petard! The implosion of the USA continues afoot, Hillary Clinton being one of its cheerleaders (according to her recent Amappaling interview).

Trump is also promising a rapid USG reaction to India buying S-400s, so it really is time to stock up on the popcorn. I knew for sure that this year would certainly be more interesting than last year, but 2019 should be a corker. Woo.

[Oct 12, 2018] I suspect The Netherlands are being targeted because among other things the International Court of Crimes and the International Court of Justice are based in The Hague. One of these bone-shakers is that The Netherlands is a major corporate tax haven and as such competes with Britain and the US.

Oct 12, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Jen October 4, 2018 at 2:49 pm

I suspect The Netherlands are being targeted because among other things the International Court of Crimes and the International Court of Justice are based in The Hague. There may be other reasons as well: the Dutch must have a fair few skeletons in their collective closet and the US could very well target one of these and bring the entire wardrobe crashing down and exposing all its sordid secrets.

One of these bone-shakers is that The Netherlands is a major corporate tax haven and as such competes with Britain and the US.

http://www.nomoretax.eu/netherlands-tax-haven/

kirill October 4, 2018 at 7:49 am
Pence is now accusing of China of hacking the US elections. I know China has been lobbying and making campaign finance contributions in the past, but the US accusations have a clear pattern. Recall how US blacks were tagged as rapists of fine white virgins. This reputation was then used to justify apartheid laws. The US is basically accusing Russia and China of violation of America's "dignity". And is trying to globally treat them as segregated blacks. The same tired shtick for the "exceptional" nation with a self-assigned "manifest destiny". The country that needs containment is the USA. It has clear, psychotic ambitions to rule the world.
Moscow Exile October 6, 2018 at 2:16 am
Coming from government ministers of the most powerful state on earth, do not all these accusations directed against all those other states that are populated by sad, lesser beings who are envious of the "Shining City on the Hill", the "Home of the Brave and Land of the Free", that epitome of human society, that place where "history has ended", not sound somwhat hysterical, a symptom of weakness, of self-doubt concerrning the hegemon's might and integrity?
kirill October 6, 2018 at 4:47 am
They need an excuse for their colonial racket. During the USSR era, they had the "threat of communism" to rally local elites in developing countries and also used this "threat" as an excuse to install death squad junta regimes. The death of the USSR deprived them of the "threat" fig leaf so they had to ramp up the humanitarian concern BS. Countries need to be controlled by demonizing their leaders for being tyrants and terrorist sponsors. For violating human rights by not letting Soros and NATzO funded 5th column operations called NGOs do their thing. It seems these transparent pretexts are still effective at convincing people around the world that America and its vassals are a collection of noble knights doing good deeds and not a pack of hyenas engaged in gang mutilation of countries that leads to millions of deaths of innocent civilians. What was the point of Libya, Iraq, Syria, and all the other regime change victims? There was no arrival of democracy and safety. There was only needless death and degradation.

[Oct 12, 2018] The west returns compulsively to the region because it thinks that this is where things might tear loose; independence movements in Chechnya, Ingushetia and Dagestan. Where, as the western regime-change impulse fondly returns time and again, issues of fundamentalist religion can be played upon to flare into conflict

Oct 12, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Mark Chapman October 6, 2018 at 10:19 am

The west returns compulsively to the region because it thinks that this is where things might tear loose; independence movements in Chechnya, Ingushetia and Dagestan. Where, as the western regime-change impulse fondly returns time and again, issues of fundamentalist religion can be played upon to flare into conflict – it has worked for the west all around the world, turning Shi'ite against Sunni and this one against that one. It often signals its interest with plaintive articles by pro-democracy think-tanks implore Vladimir Putin to let the Chechens be free, instead of imposing a succession of overlords upon them, bla, bla, you know the drill. How can Putin diss the mighty USA for supporting oppressors of choice around the world when he won't man up and let the Chechens have their own free state?

In fact, Putin has said in the past that the Chechens can be free and independent if that is what they really want. But implied in that is that Moscow will no longer underwrite the new state; that it will have to achieve economic viability itself.

Normally that is where the west comes in, singing siren songs of sovereignty-association and fabulous prosperity to be had in attaching oneself to the western orbit. But so far not enough people buy it – there are always the rebel darlings, the tearaways who bleat discontent and stir the imagination of the western press. But just as often they are religious nutters and suicide bombers who just want a dramatic death. Like that chap and his missus – Dagestan, I think it was, a few years back – who had their apartment shot to rubble with them in it after they repeatedly refused repeated offers to surrender and live, deigning only for a hi-lift crane bucket to come up to the balcony to give their daughter into the arms of her wailing granny. Martyrdom and progressive leadership almost never flourish in the same person, for some reason. Except maybe for Jeremy Corbyn.

Jen October 5, 2018 at 12:57 pm
Just looked up Ingushetia on Wikipedia and found it's a small federal republic whose population as of 2014 was less than 500,000.

I rather doubt then that thousands of people turned up in Magas to protest. If there are no aerial photographs of the protesters, then we have to treat the figures reported by Reuters and other news agencies outside Russia with suspicion.

The OC Media article at this link states hundreds turned up to protest and the photographs appear to back up that statement:
http://oc-media.org/protests-erupt-in-ingushetia-as-mps-say-chechnya-land-swap-vote-was-falsified/

There is dispute over the size of the area being transferred to Chechnya: the area officially being transferred amounts to less than 2,000 hectares but according to Ingushetian opposition group Mekhk Kkhel 58,000 hectares are being transferred. The difference between the figures seems suspicious and the upper figure is likely to be an exaggeration.

et Al October 6, 2018 at 6:06 am
Nice source Jen:

http://oc-media.org/about-us/about-oc-media/

We strive to shed light and offer a variety of per­spec­tives on ongoing social, economic and political devel­op­ments in the region, including in: human rights, ethnic and religious minori­ties, labour rights, gender and queer issues, devel­op­ment, as well as conflict dynamics in the region

OC Media was co-founded in January 2017 by Mari Nikuradze, Dominik K. Cagara, and Caroline Sutcliffe, initially under the auspices of Chai Khana NGO. It has received funding from the UK Government's Conflict, Stability and Security Fund, the European Endowment for Democracy, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung South Caucasus Office, Open Society Foun­da­tions, and the United Kingdom Foreign and Com­mon­wealth Office, with joint com­mis­sions with Inter­na­tion­al Alert (EPNK/European Union Ini­tia­tive), Civil.ge (COBERM), and Open Democracy Russia.

[Oct 11, 2018] Dutch push for a new sanctions regime for Human Rights abusers, apart from global sponsors of Islamic terrorism who also happen to have $$$

Oct 08, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Vis the Dutch push for a new sanctions regime for Human Rights abusers, apart from global sponsors of Islamic terrorism who also happen to have $$$, the obvious takeaway that only just occurred to me is that the push for a European Magnitsky Act must have failed.

This is exactly the same thing, they just dropped the name. The EU is not united and I don't see the Netherlands as having enough influence in the EU without the UK.

[Oct 11, 2018] Gleiwitz replay by British is planned

Oct 11, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Moscow Exile October 6, 2018 at 10:03 pm

Panic in Mordor!!!

Britain is ready to conduct a cyber attack against Russia -- The Sunday Times

The British military is ready to take this step in case of an "attack" by Russia against one of the Western countries

LONDON, 7 October 2018, 07:28 -- REGNUM The military command of Great Britain has announced its willingness to carry out a cyber attack against Moscow , writes the British newspaper "The Sunday Times" on 7 October,.

According to the publication, citing an unnamed source closely familiar with the situation , the British military is ready to take this step in case of an "attack" by Russia against a Western country. This measure will be possible when Britain has a shortage of conventional defence resources and will manifest itself by the fact that the capital of Russia will have its energy supplies cut off.

According to the "Sunday Times" source, variants of "Russian aggression", against which the British military is prepared to use cyber weapons, are said to be an invasion by Russian President Vladimir Putin of Libya in order to seize oil and to create a new crisis of migrants in Europe and an attempt to capture "small Islands belonging to Estonia". [Such action would be taken by the UK] so as to comply with a NATO clause, in which an attack against one member is considered to be an attack against the whole alliance.

We should note that recently the West has been constantly accusing Russia of cyber attacks against the West for economic sabotage and interference in local political life. However, tangible evidence of Russian guilt as regards such accusations has not once been provided.

My stress above.

Why should Russia, personified as the Dark Lord, wish to seize oil in Libya? Has Russia no oil of its own?

Sowing disarray in Libya? Now who, I wonder, might have done that before now?

An immigrant crisis in Europe created by the Empire of Evil?

And the present crisis? Created by whom?

Estonian Islands? What need has Russia of islands in the Baltic?

And of course, an unnamed source.

All in all, classic "projection: the West threatening to do what it has long planned and, furthermore, continuously accused Russia of doing , without providing any evidence whatsoever, so as to psych-up the sheeple for justified retaliation against the "Putin Regime".

Gleiwitz replay, anyone?

[Oct 02, 2018] War time propaganda serves for the USA elite as a tool to contain/constrain discontent of allies and citizenry as they attempt to damage or destroy the Russian and Chinese economies.

Notable quotes:
"... Along these lines, the Trump Administration has informed Russia in April 2017 that the period of "strategic patience" is over (well, at least official 'cause being 'patient' didn't seem to deter regime change and covert ops) . They now employ a policy of "maximum pressure" instead. ..."
"... Also note: The Trump Administration has officially labeled Russia and China as enemies when they called them "recidivist" nations in the National Defense Authorization Act in late 2017. (Note: "recidivist" because Russia and China want to return to a world where there is not a hegemonic power, aka a "multi-polar" world). ..."
"... we're already within an ongoing Hybrid Third World War, which is more readily apparent with Trump's Trade War escalation. ..."
"... the "real" US economy is only 5 Trillion, only 25% of what's claimed as the total economy ..."
"... at's clearly happening--and it's been ongoing for quite awhile--for those with open eyes is the Class War between the 1% and 99%. The domestic battle within the Outlaw US Empire for Single Payer/Medicare For All healthcare is one theatre of the much larger ongoing war. ..."
"... Clearly, the upcoming financial crisis must spark a massive political upheaval larger than any ever seen before to prevent institution of the 2008 "solution." ..."
"... The primary dynamic of history is war. This has caused immense suffering. It is now becoming exponentially worse ..."
"... If we think of humankind as a large complex living entity, then like all such entities it will expire at some point. So in the larger picture, what we are moving towards is natural, and to be expected. ..."
Oct 02, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Sally Snyder , Oct 2, 2018 12:26:42 PM | link

Here is a detailed look at what the United States is getting for its $700 billion defense budget:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2018/09/voting-for-war.html

It is rather surprising that the Democrats who have demonized Donald Trump at every turn have voted in favour of the this extremely bloated defense budget, putting even more military might into the hands of a President and Commander-in-Chief that they seem to despise and who they are demonizing because of his alleged collusion with Russia.

m , Oct 2, 2018 1:33:28 PM | link

Speaking of WWIII...
https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/10/02/us-switching-ukraine-location-start-world-war-iii-against-russia.html
Mike Maloney , Oct 2, 2018 1:55:09 PM | link
We've been in WW3 for several years now. Bolton went "Full Monty" with his declaration that U.S. forces will stay in Syria until Iran vacates. The introduction of a Yemen War Powers Resolution in the House last week is a hopeful sign. A reason to root for a Blue Wave in November. Dem leadership, already on record backing the War Powers Resolution, would be obligated to block U.S. enabling genocide in Yemen.
Jackrabbit , Oct 2, 2018 2:25:59 PM | link
m @9

I disagree with Eric Zusse's belief that USA wants to start WWIII. I think they want to contain/constrain discontent of allies and citizenry as they attempt to destroy the Russian and Chinese economies. War is only a last resort. But heightened military tensions mean that the major protagonists have to divert resources to their military, causing a drag on the economies.

Along these lines, the Trump Administration has informed Russia in April 2017 that the period of "strategic patience" is over (well, at least official 'cause being 'patient' didn't seem to deter regime change and covert ops) . They now employ a policy of "maximum pressure" instead.

The big concern for me is that "maximum pressure" also means an elevated chance of mistakes and miscalculations that could inadvertently cause WWIII.

Also note: The Trump Administration has officially labeled Russia and China as enemies when they called them "recidivist" nations in the National Defense Authorization Act in late 2017. (Note: "recidivist" because Russia and China want to return to a world where there is not a hegemonic power, aka a "multi-polar" world).

PS IMO Trump election and the Kavanaugh and Gina Haspel nominations are key to the pursuit of global hegemony.

karlof1 , Oct 2, 2018 3:02:57 PM | link
Most warnings have centered on a financial meltdown, as this article reviews . As most know, IMO we're already within an ongoing Hybrid Third World War, which is more readily apparent with Trump's Trade War escalation.

As noted in my link to Escobar's latest, the EU has devised a retaliatory mechanism to shield itself and others from the next round of illegal sanctions Trump's promised to impose after Mid-term elections.

In an open thread post, I linked to Hudson's latest audio-cast; here's what he said on the 10th anniversary of the 2008 crash: "So this crash of 2008 was not a crash of the banks. The banks were bailed out. The economy was left with all the junk mortgages in place, all the fraudulent debts."

Another article I linked to in a comment to james averred the "real" US economy is only 5 Trillion, only 25% of what's claimed as the total economy . Hudson again: "Contrary to the idea that bailing out the banks helps the economy, the fact is that the economy today cannot recover without a bank failure ." [My emphasis]

Wh at's clearly happening--and it's been ongoing for quite awhile--for those with open eyes is the Class War between the 1% and 99%. The domestic battle within the Outlaw US Empire for Single Payer/Medicare For All healthcare is one theatre of the much larger ongoing war.

As Hudson's stated many times, the goal of the 1% is to reestablish Feudalism via debt-peonage. All the other happenings geopolitically serve to mask this Class War within the Outlaw US Empire. Clearly, the upcoming financial crisis must spark a massive political upheaval larger than any ever seen before to prevent institution of the 2008 "solution." Many predict that this crisis will be timed to occur in 2020 constituting the biggest election meddling of all time.

The crisis will likely be blamed on China without any evidence for hacking Wall Street and causing the subsequent crash -- a Financial False Flag to serve the same purpose as 911.

karlof1 , Oct 2, 2018 3:44:26 PM | link
james @16--

Much can occur and be obscured during wartime. The radical changes to USA from 1938-1948 is very instructive--the commonfolk were on the threshold of gaining control over the federal government for the first time in US history only to have it blocked then reversed (forever?) by FDR and the 1% who tried to overthrow him in 1933.

Same with the current War OF Terror's use to curtail longstanding civil liberties and constitutional rights and much more. To accomplish what's being called "Bail-In" within the USA, Martial Law would need to be emplaced since most of the public is to be robbed of whatever cash they have, and World War would probably be the only way to get Martial Law instituted--and accepted by the military which would be its enforcer.

A precedent exists for stealing money from the people--their gold--via Executive Order 6102 , which used a law instituted during WW1 and still on the books.

mike k , Oct 2, 2018 3:51:45 PM | link
The primary dynamic of history is war. This has caused immense suffering. It is now becoming exponentially worse . Critical graphs are going off their charts. The end is near.

If we think of humankind as a large complex living entity, then like all such entities it will expire at some point. So in the larger picture, what we are moving towards is natural, and to be expected.

Like individual humans, the human population as a whole can pursue activities that maintain it's health, or it can indulge in activities that create disease and hasten it's death. Humankind is deep in toxifying behaviors that signal it's demise in the near future.

[Oct 02, 2018] I myself think the USSR collapsed because of two main factors that are inteconnected with the world geopolitics of its time

Oct 02, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

vk , Oct 1, 2018 1:34:54 PM | link

@ Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 1, 2018 1:25:43 AM | 73

The collapse of the USSR is a very complex issue, and we still don't have a consensus (among the people who study this seriously).

I myself think the USSR collapsed because of two main factors that are inteconnected with the world geopolitics of its time:

1) the USSR couldn't make the transition from the second to the third industrial revolution in the 70s (i.e. from fordism to toyotism/ohnism). Albeit it is true the USA never really embraced toyotism (just some pockets in the Silicon Valley and the financial sector), it is a fact the capitalist world, as a whole, did, because it worked out in Japan and South Korea -- many of these techonologies bleeding to the world market.

The USSR, since Stalin, adopted a method of "socialist primitive accumulation", where every techonological revolution depended on a forced (centralized) global collectivization: the old had to be entirely dismantled for the new to be built over the carcass of this old. This was a brutal (albeit quick and effective) method, so it was always risky and left the USSR exposed to the capitalists militarily.

Another problem with the USSR system was that toyotism was based on heavy investment in "human capital", i.e. investment on the workers' education and specialization. Forced collectivization, therefore, excluded the possibility of toyotism by design, so it was never truly an option for the post-Stalin Soviet leaders.

In a world only the USSR and the COMECON countries existed, it could've be stationed in the second industrial revolution forever: the USSR never had a recession (except in 1990 and 1991, when it was already de facto capitalist). It was stagnant, but not collapsing. But it didn't exist alone: on the other side of Berlin, there was the capitalist world, and, in this dual world, not transitioning to toyotism was not an option for the Soviet Union.

2) In a bipolar world, with the toyotism path closed, Soviet bureaucrats developed a class sentiment, which put pressure from the inside on the Soviet inherent egalitarian system. In other words, the USSR was a victim of its own success: the problem was that that success came too early, in a world where capitalism still existed.

In the 1980s, the USSR had already eradicated poverty and the most well-paid worker (a high bureaucrat) received four times the salary of the lowest-paid worker. The basic public services (transport, education and healthcare) already were free at the point of use and universal and of a very good quality.

The problem was that the USSR emphasized too much on the production of infrastructure and too little on consumption goods, which were already of a poor quality when compared to the Western ones. The high Soviet bureaucracy, in constant contact with the capitalist world, was then slowly, but surely, coopted by the delicacies of the West, and thus developed a urge of class distinction.

This "urge" can be illustrated by an anecdote. When Yeltsin was still the President of Soviet Russia, George H. W. Bush invited him to Houston. There, he was marvelled by Jack Daniel's whiskey and asked for some cases for the trip back. Therefore the joke he sold the Soviet Union for two cases of Jack Daniel's.

[Oct 01, 2018] It all started with 9/11. That was the pretext for Gen. Clark's "We're going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran."

Oct 01, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Pštrossova 6 , Sep 30, 2018 2:23:33 PM | link

Posted the following this morning on last week's Open Thread, so I'm reposting here

This comment will try to focus on the Big Picture while ignoring all the sideshows and distractions

The Big Picture has three parts: (1) 9/11 where it all started (2) Putin was a "good guy" when he was aligned with the "war on terror" (3) Putin became a bad guy the moment he figured out that ALL these wars were to destroy nations, not save them, and so he intervened in Syria


(1) the people who did 9/11 are the SAME people who are trying to menace Russia (as well as Syria and Iran) today

9/11 is where it all started .this event led us to where we are now .
There are posted videos of news outlets reporting on building seven collapsing – BEFORE it did. That would be impossible without ADVANCE KNOWLEDGE of the controlled demolition of that building. Something that Osama and his 19 henchmen would not have been able to accomplish even if they could have done the rest, which is beyond preposterous.


(2) And so right after 9/11, when the chimp looked into Putin's eyes, and saw a good guy, that was when Putin was aligned with the nascent "war on terror". Something Vlad was all too familiar with, and happy to help out the West with, in any way he could.


(3) But then Vladimir figured out, (what most have apparently been unable to figure out) – that ALL of these wars – (following the *OBVIOUSLY* lied about 9/11 false flag), are intended to destroy nations, not save them. Duh.


The people who did 9/11 (Zionists and their lackeys in the West, NATO, CIA, etc..) are the EXACT SAME PEOPLE who are trying to menace Russia today.

And yet many people haven't even bothered to look into this event. THE event that will be ultimately responsible for the clash of civilizations to come, when the Zionists demand Putin vacate Syria so they can steal the Golan Heights.

How can a someone ruminate over, write about, postulate and pontificate over a (((Western))) foreign policy that maligns and menaces Russia.. and yet fail to see the obvious?

For us to have NO curiousity about 9/11 would be like Bashar Assad believing the war he's been fighting was a home-grown event unaffected by foreign interests.

It all started with 9/11. That was the pretext for Gen. Clark's "We're going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran."

Retired General Wesley Clark.

Have you ever seen the video?


Do you understand how that agenda might have effected the (((West's))) relations with Russia, once Putin put his foot down over Syria?


Or are all of these things completely independent of each other, and the war on Syria is actually being waged by disgruntled Syrian Muslims who want a less secular state, with help from NATO ONLY when Assad uses chemical weapons against his own civilians?


Why are otherwise smart people unable to comprehend, (or even contemplate) the big picture?


Peter AU 1 , Sep 30, 2018 2:55:35 PM | link

26

Use of wahhabi jihadists began in the late seventies in Afghanistan. From there they were shipped to the Russian Caucasus in the mid nineties to assist with the breakup of the Russian federation.
The petro dollar hegemony began with the discovery of oil at Prudhoe bay in the late sixties.
False flags are a proud American tradition virtually since its inception.

fast freddy , Sep 30, 2018 3:38:53 PM | link
It is interesting also that The US (and other Western Powers) allied with and used Muslims in Yugoslavia. These were posited as the good guy victims in need of Humanitarian Intervention by carpet bombing the Orthodox Christian Serbs. Of course the Muslims were financed and equipped as freedom fighters. TV, Radio stations and hospitals with workers in them, were destroyed in this humanitarian intervention.

Now it is a mishmash of small broken states with US Military bases located in them. One of the largest bases is Camp Bondsteel in Kosovo. Named for Vietnam War Medal of Honor recipient United States Army Staff Sergeant James L. Bondsteel, the name reminds one of a character from Dr. Strangelove (Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Bob).

The once successful socialist nation was broken and partitioned and looted by Multinational Corps and Western Banks.

The destruction of that country took years in the making. Reagan admin instituted the first round of sanctions. It became ripe for the taking after Tito died and the USSR was in chaos.

While each successive admin piled on, Bill Clinton got to be the point man for the prolonged attacks. Interestingly, Hillary takes credit for urging Bill to bomb civilian population centers.

A precurser to "We Came, We saw, He died...HAHAHAHHAHA).

[Sep 29, 2018] A CIA lucky break How the death of the 'Smiling Pope' helped Washington win the Cold War -- RT Op-ed

Notable quotes:
"... "The true treasures of the Church are the poor, the little ones to be helped not merely by occasional alms but in the way they can be promoted," ..."
"... "He talked particularly of his concern over 'Los Desaparecidos', people who had vanished off the face of Argentinian earth in their thousands. By the conclusion of the 15th minute audience the General began to wish that he had heeded the eleventh-hour attempts of Vatican officials to dissuade him coming to Rome," ..."
"... "His mind was as strong, as hard and as sharp as a diamond. That was where his real power was. He understood and had the ability to get to the centre of a problem. He could not be overwhelmed. When everyone was applauding the smiling Pope, I was waiting for him 'tirare fuori le unghie', to reveal his claws. He had tremendous power." ..."
"... But John Paul I never lived to exercise his "tremendous power." ..."
"... "The public speculation that this death was not natural grew by the minute. Men and women were heard shouting at the inert form: Who has done this to you? Who has murdered you?" ..."
"... David Yallop revealed that on the day of his death, the Pope had discussed a reshuffle of Vatican staff with Secretary of State Cardinal Jean Villot, who was also to be replaced. Yallop claimed that the Pope had a list of a number of clerics who belonged to the Freemasons, membership of which was strictly prohibited by the Church. The most sinister of these Masonic lodges was the fiercely anti-communist Propaganda Due (P2), which held great influence in Italy at this time, being referred to as a "state within a state." ..."
"... "Had he lived another week, the United States would have been looking at a half a dozen mini-Cubas in its back yard," ..."
"... "The single fact of John Paul II's election in 1978 changed everything. In Poland, everything began Then the whole thing spread. He was in Chile and Pinochet was out. He was in Haiti and Duvalier was out. He was in the Philippines and Marcos was out," ..."
"... In 1985, Agca's confederate, Abdullah Catli, who was later killed in a car crash, testified that he had been approached by the West German BND spy organization, which promised him a large sum of money "if he implicated the Bulgarian secret service and the KGB in the attempt on the Pope's life." ..."
"... "ex-CIA analyst Melvin A. Goodman disclosed that his colleagues, under pressure from CIA higher-ups, skewed their reports to try to lend credence to the contention that the Soviets were involved. 'The CIA had no evidence linking the KGB to the plot,' Goodman told the Senate Intelligence Committee." ..."
"... In 2011, a new book entitled 'To Kill the Pope, the Truth about the Assassination Attempt on John Paul II', which was based on 20 years of research, concluded that the CIA had indeed tried to frame Bulgaria, in order to discredit communism. ..."
"... The great irony of course is that after the Berlin Wall came down, Pope John Paul II became a strong critic of the inhumane 'greed is good' model of capitalism which had replaced communism. In Latvia, he said capitalism was responsible for "grave social injustices" and acknowledged that Marxism contained "a kernel of truth." He said that "the ideology of the market" made solidarity between people "difficult at best." In Czechoslovakia, he warned against replacing communism with materialism and consumerism. ..."
"... Follow Neil Clark @NeilClark66 ..."
"... Think your friends would be interested? Share this story! ..."
Sep 29, 2018 | www.rt.com

The sudden death of Pope John Paul I, exactly 40 years ago today, stunned the world. The 'Smiling Pope' had only served for 33 days. His demise and replacement by John Paul II marked an important turning point in the old Cold War. The year 1978, as I argued in a previous op-ed, was the year today's world was made.

There was nothing inevitable about the ascendancy of Reagan and Thatcher, the rise of groups like Al-Qaeda and IS, and the downfall of the Soviet Union. The neoliberal, neoconservative world order and its associated violence came about because of key events and decisions which took place 40 years ago. The Vatican was at the heart of these events.

The drama which unfolded there in the summer of 1978 would have been rejected as being too far-fetched if sent in as a film script. In a space of two and a half months, we had three different Popes. There was no great surprise when, on August 6, the first of them, Pope Paul VI, died after suffering a massive heart attack. The Supreme Pontiff, who had served since 1963, was 80 and had been in declining health. But the death of his much younger successor, John Paul I, a radical reformer who wanted to build a genuine People's Church, has fuelled conspiracy theories to this day.

Read more Israeli Prime Minister Menahem Begin and National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski walk in Camp David 09 December 1978 © AFP 1978: The year today's world was made

Cardinal Albino Luciani, the working-class son of a bricklayer (and staunch socialist), from a small town in northern Italy, was a Pope like no other. He refused a coronation and detested being carried on the sedia gestatoria – the Papal chair. He hated pomp and circumstance and pretentiousness. His speeches were down to earth and full of homely observations, with regular references to popular fiction. He possessed a gentle humor and always had a twinkle in his eye. He was by all accounts an incredibly sweet man.

But there was steel there, too. Luciani was determined to root out corruption, and to investigate the complex financial affairs of the Vatican's own bank, and its connection to the scandal-hit Banco Ambrosiano.

While he had declared communism to be incompatible with Christianity, his father's egalitarian ethos stayed with him. "The true treasures of the Church are the poor, the little ones to be helped not merely by occasional alms but in the way they can be promoted," he once said. At a meeting with General Videla of Argentina, he made clear his abhorrence of fascism. "He talked particularly of his concern over 'Los Desaparecidos', people who had vanished off the face of Argentinian earth in their thousands. By the conclusion of the 15th minute audience the General began to wish that he had heeded the eleventh-hour attempts of Vatican officials to dissuade him coming to Rome," noted David Yallop in his book 'In God's Name'.

One cleric, Father Busa, wrote of John Paul I: "His mind was as strong, as hard and as sharp as a diamond. That was where his real power was. He understood and had the ability to get to the centre of a problem. He could not be overwhelmed. When everyone was applauding the smiling Pope, I was waiting for him 'tirare fuori le unghie', to reveal his claws. He had tremendous power."

But John Paul I never lived to exercise his "tremendous power." He was found dead in his bed on the morning of September 28, 1978. The official story was that the 'Smiling Pope' had died from a heart attack. But it wasn't long before questions were being asked. John Paul I was only 65 and had appeared to be in fine health.

The fact that there was no post-mortem only added to the suspicions. "The public speculation that this death was not natural grew by the minute. Men and women were heard shouting at the inert form: Who has done this to you? Who has murdered you?" wrote David Yallop.

Read more © Tony Gentile / Reuters 'Sex is a gift of God': Pope Francis shares benefits of 'passionate' love, slams pornography

David Yallop revealed that on the day of his death, the Pope had discussed a reshuffle of Vatican staff with Secretary of State Cardinal Jean Villot, who was also to be replaced. Yallop claimed that the Pope had a list of a number of clerics who belonged to the Freemasons, membership of which was strictly prohibited by the Church. The most sinister of these Masonic lodges was the fiercely anti-communist Propaganda Due (P2), which held great influence in Italy at this time, being referred to as a "state within a state." The murky world of P2, and its leaders' links with organized crime, the Mafia and the CIA is discussed in 'In God's Name'.

Another writer, Lucien Gregoire, author of 'Murder by the Grace of God', points the finger of blame squarely at the CIA. He notes a seemingly strange coincidence, namely that on September 3, 1978, just 25 days before the Pope himself died, Metropolitan Nikodim, the visiting leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, who was later revealed to have been a KGB agent, fell dead at John Paul's feet in the Vatican after sipping coffee. He was only 48.

Gregoire says that the CIA dubbed John Paul I 'the Bolshevik Pope' and was keen to eliminate him before he presided over a conference the Puebla Conference in Mexico. "Had he lived another week, the United States would have been looking at a half a dozen mini-Cubas in its back yard," he writes.

While there's no shortage of suspects if you believe that John Paul I was murdered, it needs to be stressed that despite the contradictory statements made about the circumstances of his death, and the strange coincidences, no evidence has yet been produced to show that his death was not a natural one. What we can say though is that there will have been quite a few powerful and influential people in Italy and beyond who were relieved that the 'Smiling Pope' had such a short time in office.

His successor, the Polish Archbishop Karol Wojtyla, who took the name 'John Paul II' as a homage to his predecessor, made it clear that investigating the Vatican's financial activities and uncovering Freemasons was not a priority. As a patriotic Pole, his appointment was manna from Heaven for anti-communist hawks in the US State Department. "The single fact of John Paul II's election in 1978 changed everything. In Poland, everything began Then the whole thing spread. He was in Chile and Pinochet was out. He was in Haiti and Duvalier was out. He was in the Philippines and Marcos was out," said Joaquin Navarro-Valls, John Paul II's press secretary.

The way that Pope John Paul II spoke out against what he regarded as communist repression, not only in his native Poland but across Eastern Europe and beyond, saw him being toasted by the neocon faction. It might not have been just words either, which helped undermine communist rule. There was a rumor that 'God's Banker' Roberto Calvi, who in 1982 was found hanging from Blackfriars Bridge in London, had sent $50mn to 'Solidarity' in Poland on behalf of the Pope.

Read more FILE PHOTO: At the invitation of the Constantinople Patriarch, heads of all Orthodox churches meet at the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in Istanbul, on MArch 9, 2014. Murad Sezer Biggest rift in modern Orthodox history? Russian Church won't work w/ Constantinople-chaired bodies

In May 1981, John Paul II was shot and wounded by Turkish gunman Mehmet Ali Agca. Neocons in the US promoted the narrative that it was a communist plot (organized by Bulgaria), but Sofia denied involvement. In 1985, Agca's confederate, Abdullah Catli, who was later killed in a car crash, testified that he had been approached by the West German BND spy organization, which promised him a large sum of money "if he implicated the Bulgarian secret service and the KGB in the attempt on the Pope's life."

Martin Lee, writing in Consortium News, also notes that in 1990, "ex-CIA analyst Melvin A. Goodman disclosed that his colleagues, under pressure from CIA higher-ups, skewed their reports to try to lend credence to the contention that the Soviets were involved. 'The CIA had no evidence linking the KGB to the plot,' Goodman told the Senate Intelligence Committee."

In 2011, a new book entitled 'To Kill the Pope, the Truth about the Assassination Attempt on John Paul II', which was based on 20 years of research, concluded that the CIA had indeed tried to frame Bulgaria, in order to discredit communism.

The great irony of course is that after the Berlin Wall came down, Pope John Paul II became a strong critic of the inhumane 'greed is good' model of capitalism which had replaced communism. In Latvia, he said capitalism was responsible for "grave social injustices" and acknowledged that Marxism contained "a kernel of truth." He said that "the ideology of the market" made solidarity between people "difficult at best." In Czechoslovakia, he warned against replacing communism with materialism and consumerism.

Having enlisted the assistance of the Vatican in helping to bring down 'The Reds', the neo-liberals and neo-cons then turned on the Church. The Church survived communism, but it hasn't fared too well under consumerism. The Vatican is nowhere near as influential as it was in 1978. The US, meanwhile, unconstrained by a geopolitical counter-weight, threw its weight around the world after 1989, illegally invading and attacking a series of sovereign states.

One can only wonder how different things might have been if the 'Smiling Pope' had lived.

Follow Neil Clark @NeilClark66

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

[Sep 25, 2018] The Magnitsky Affair Confessions Of A Hustled Hack

That's amazing example of contlling the nattarive and suppressing alternative sources. Should go in all textbooks on the subject
Notable quotes:
"... Magnitsky did not disclose the theft. He first mentioned it in testimony in October 2008. But it had already been reported in the New York Times on July 24, 2008. In reality, the whistleblower was a certain Rimma Starova. She worked for one of the implicated shell companies and, having read in the papers that authorities were investigating, went to police to give testimony in April 2008 – six months before Magnitsky spoke of the scam for the first time (see here and here ). ..."
"... Why, then, did I report that about Magnitsky? Because at the time my sole source for the story was Team Browder, who had reached out to the Cyprus Mail and with whom I communicated via email. I was provided with 'information', flow charts and so on. All looking very professional and compelling. ..."
"... For the second article, I conversed briefly on the phone with the soft-spoken Browder himself, who handed down the gospel on the Magnitsky affair. Under the time constraints, and trusting that my sources could at least be relied upon for basic information which they presented as facts, I went along with it. I was played. But let's be clear: I let myself down too. ..."
"... Titled 'The Magnitsky Act – Behind The Scenes', it does a magisterial job of depicting how the director initially took Browder's story on faith, only to end up questioning everything. The docudrama dissects, disassembles and dismantles Browder's narrative, as Nekrasov – by no means a Putin apologist – delves deeper down into the rabbit hole. ..."
"... The point can't be stressed enough, as this very claim is the lynchpin of Browder's account. In his bestseller Red Notice, Browder alleges that Magnitsky was arrested because he exposed two corrupt police officers, and that he was jailed and tortured because he wouldn't retract. ..."
"... It gets worse for Nekrasov, as he goes on to discover that Magnitsky was no lawyer. He did not have a lawyer's license. Rather, he was an accountant/auditor who worked for Moscow law firm Firestone Duncan. Yet every chance he gets, Browder still refers to Magnitsky as 'a lawyer' or 'my lawyer'. ..."
"... The full deposition, some six hours long, is (still) available on Youtube . As penance for past transgressions, I watched it in its entirety. While refraining from using adjectives to describe it, I shall simply cite some examples and let readers decide on Browder's credibility. Browder seems to suffer an almost total memory blackout as a lawyer begins firing questions at him. He cannot recall, or does not know, where he or his team got the information concerning the alleged illicit transfer of funds from Hermitage-owned companies. ..."
"... According to Team Browder, in 2007 the 'Klyuev gang' together with Russian interior ministry officials travelled to Cyprus, ostensibly to set up the tax rebate scam using shell companies. But in his deposition, the Anglo-American businessman cannot remember, or does not know, how his team obtained the travel information of the conspirators. ..."
Sep 25, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Elias Hazou via TheDuran.com,

Before getting down to brass tacks, let me say that I loathe penning articles like this; loathe writing about myself or in the first person, because a reporter should report the news, not be the news. Yet I grudgingly make this exception because, ironically, it happens to be newsworthy. To cut to the chase, it concerns Anglo-American financier Bill Browder and the Sergei Magnitsky affair. I, like others in the news business I'd venture to guess, feel led astray by Browder.

This is no excuse. I didn't do my due diligence, and take full responsibility for erroneous information printed under my name. For that, I apologize to readers. I refer to two articles of mine published in a Cypriot publication, dated December 25, 2015 and January 6, 2016.

Browder's basic story, as he has told it time and again, goes like this: in June 2007, Russian police officers raided the Moscow offices of Browder's firm Hermitage, confiscating company seals, certificates of incorporation, and computers.

Browder says the owners and directors of Hermitage-owned companies were subsequently changed, using these seized documents. Corrupt courts were used to create fake debts for these companies, which allowed for the taxes they had previously paid to the Russian Treasury to be refunded to what were now re-registered companies. The funds stolen from the Russian state were then laundered through banks and shell companies.

The scheme is said to have been planned earlier in Cyprus by Russian law enforcement and tax officials in cahoots with criminal elements.

All this was supposedly discovered by Magnitsky, whom Browder had tasked with investigating what happened. When Magnitsky reported the fraud, some of the nefarious characters involved had him arrested and jailed. He refused to retract, and died while in pre-trial detention.

In my first article, I wrote: "Magnitsky, a 37-year-old Russian accountant, died in jail in 2009 after he exposed huge tax embezzlement "

False . Contrary to the above story that has been rehashed countless times, Magnitsky did not expose any tax fraud, did not blow the whistle.

The interrogation reports show that Magnitsky had in fact been summoned by Russian authorities as a witness to an already ongoing investigation into Hermitage. Nor he did he accuse Russian investigators Karpov and/or Kuznetsov of committing the $230 million treasury fraud, as Browder claims.

Magnitsky did not disclose the theft. He first mentioned it in testimony in October 2008. But it had already been reported in the New York Times on July 24, 2008. In reality, the whistleblower was a certain Rimma Starova. She worked for one of the implicated shell companies and, having read in the papers that authorities were investigating, went to police to give testimony in April 2008 – six months before Magnitsky spoke of the scam for the first time (see here and here ).

Why, then, did I report that about Magnitsky? Because at the time my sole source for the story was Team Browder, who had reached out to the Cyprus Mail and with whom I communicated via email. I was provided with 'information', flow charts and so on. All looking very professional and compelling.

At the time of the first article, I knew next to nothing about the Magnitsky/Browder affair. I had to go through media reports to get the gist, and then get up to speed with Browder's latest claims that a Cypriot law firm, which counted the Hermitage Fund among its clients, had just been 'raided' by Cypriot police. The article had to be written and delivered on the same day. In retrospect I should have asked for more time – a lot more time – and Devil take the deadlines.

For the second article, I conversed briefly on the phone with the soft-spoken Browder himself, who handed down the gospel on the Magnitsky affair. Under the time constraints, and trusting that my sources could at least be relied upon for basic information which they presented as facts, I went along with it. I was played. But let's be clear: I let myself down too.

In the ensuing weeks and months, I didn't follow up on the story as my gut told me something was wrong: villains and malign actors operating in a Wild West Russia, and at the centre of it all, a heroic Magnitsky who paid with his life – the kind of script that Hollywood execs would kill for.

Subsequently I mentally filed away the Browder story, while being aware it was in the news.

But the real red pill was a documentary by Russian filmmaker Andrei Nekrasov, which came to my attention a few weeks ago.

Titled 'The Magnitsky Act – Behind The Scenes', it does a magisterial job of depicting how the director initially took Browder's story on faith, only to end up questioning everything. The docudrama dissects, disassembles and dismantles Browder's narrative, as Nekrasov – by no means a Putin apologist – delves deeper down into the rabbit hole.

The director had set out to make a poignant film about Magnitsky's tragedy, but became increasingly troubled as the facts he uncovered didn't stack up with Browder's account, he claims.

The 'aha' moment arrives when Nekrasov appears to show solid proof that Magnitsky blew no whistle.

Not only that, but in his depositions – the first one dating to 2006, well before Hermitage's offices were raided – Magnitsky did not accuse any police officers of being part of the 'theft' of Browder's companies and the subsequent alleged $230m tax rebate fraud.

The point can't be stressed enough, as this very claim is the lynchpin of Browder's account. In his bestseller Red Notice, Browder alleges that Magnitsky was arrested because he exposed two corrupt police officers, and that he was jailed and tortured because he wouldn't retract.

We are meant to take Browder's word for it.

It gets worse for Nekrasov, as he goes on to discover that Magnitsky was no lawyer. He did not have a lawyer's license. Rather, he was an accountant/auditor who worked for Moscow law firm Firestone Duncan. Yet every chance he gets, Browder still refers to Magnitsky as 'a lawyer' or 'my lawyer'.

The clincher comes late in the film, with footage from Browder's April 15, 2015 deposition in a US federal court, in the Prevezon case. The case, brought by the US Justice Department at Browder's instigation, targeted a Russian national who Browder said had received $1.9m of the $230m tax fraud.

In the deposition, Browder is asked if Magnitsky had a law degree in Russia. "I'm not aware that he did," he replies.

The full deposition, some six hours long, is (still) available on Youtube . As penance for past transgressions, I watched it in its entirety. While refraining from using adjectives to describe it, I shall simply cite some examples and let readers decide on Browder's credibility. Browder seems to suffer an almost total memory blackout as a lawyer begins firing questions at him. He cannot recall, or does not know, where he or his team got the information concerning the alleged illicit transfer of funds from Hermitage-owned companies.

This is despite the fact that the now-famous Powerpoint presentations – hosted on so many 'anti-corruption' websites and recited by 'human rights' NGOs – were prepared by Browder's own team.

Nor does he recall where, or how, he and his team obtained information on the amounts of the 'stolen' funds funnelled into companies. When it's pointed out that in any case this information would be privileged – banking secrecy and so forth – Browder appears to be at a loss.

According to Team Browder, in 2007 the 'Klyuev gang' together with Russian interior ministry officials travelled to Cyprus, ostensibly to set up the tax rebate scam using shell companies. But in his deposition, the Anglo-American businessman cannot remember, or does not know, how his team obtained the travel information of the conspirators.

He can't explain how they acquired the flight records and dates, doesn't have any documentation at hand, and isn't aware if any such documentation exists.

Browder claims his 'Justice for Magnitsky' campaign, which among other things has led to US sanctions on Russian persons, is all about vindicating the young man. Were that true, one would have expected Browder to go out of his way to aid Magnitsky in his hour of need.

The deposition does not bear that out.

Lawyer: "Did anyone coordinate on your behalf with Firestone Duncan about the defence of Mr Magnitsky?"

Browder: "I don't know. I don't remember."

Going back to Nekrasov's film, a standout segment is where the filmmaker looks at a briefing document prepared by Team Browder concerning the June 2007 raid by Russian police officers. In it, Browder claims the cops beat up Victor Poryugin, a lawyer with the firm.

The lawyer was then "hospitalized for two weeks," according to Browder's presentation, which includes a photo of the beaten-up lawyer. Except, it turns out the man pictured is not Poryugin at all. Rather, the photo is actually of Jim Zwerg, an American human rights activist beaten up during a street protest in 1961 (see here and here ).

Nekrasov sits down with German politician Marieluise Beck. She was a member of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (Pace), which compiled a report that made Magnitsky a cause celebre.

You can see Beck's jaw drop when Nekrasov informs her that Magnitsky did not report the fraud, that he was in fact under investigation.

It transpires that Pace, as well as human rights activists, were getting their information from one source – Browder. Later, the Council of Europe's Andreas Gross admits on camera that their entire investigation into the Magnitsky affair was based on Browder's info and that they relied on translations of Russian documents provided by Browder's team because, as Gross puts it, "I don't speak Russian myself."

That hit home – I, too, had been fed information from a single source, not bothering to verify it. I, too, initially went with the assumption that because Russia is said to be a land of endemic corruption, then Browder's story sounded plausible if not entirely credible.

For me, the takeaway is this gem from Nekrasov's narration:

"I was regularly overcome by deep unease. Was I defending a system that killed Magnitsky, even if I'd found no proof that he'd been murdered?"

Bull's-eye. Nekrasov has arrived at a crossroads, the moment where one's mettle is tested: do I pursue the facts wherever they may lead, even if they take me out of my comfort zone? What is more important: the truth, or the narrative? Nekrasov chose the former. As do I.

Like with everything else, specific allegations must be assessed independently of one's general opinion of the Russian state. They are two distinct issues. Say Browder never existed; does that make Russia a paradise?

I suspect Team Browder may scrub me from their mailing list; one can live with that.


oncemore1 , 6 minutes ago

Soros and Browder are the same tribe. FULLSTOP.

Slipstream , 6 minutes ago

Wow. That's a big **** up. But at least this guy is a journalist with ethics. He got it wrong and has said so, to set the record straight. This should be a case taught in every journalism school in the world. Unfortunately, I don't see the Magnitsky Act being repealed any time soon.

Usura , 8 minutes ago

Bill Browder is a lying ***

Thordoom , 12 minutes ago

Andrei Nekrasov now has webpage dedicated to The Magnitsky Act Behind the Scenes.

You can watch it here online.

http://magnitskyact.com

Please support his movie.

herbivore , 23 minutes ago

I watched the documentary too. The depositions of Browder were devastating to any notion of him as truth-teller. And yet, he managed to dupe politicians and media around the world.

Thordoom , 33 minutes ago

The only good thing Yeltsin did in his miserable life was to say " **** you " to Bill Clinton in the end when he found out how they wanted to set him up with that 7 billion of IMF money they stolen in order to put Boris Berezovsky in the charge of Russia as a president for hire and stole anything that was not welded down. Yeltsin knowing that the only way for Russia to survive was to put Vladimir Putin in charge to clense the unclean filth that infested Russia in the 90s

resistedliving , 52 minutes ago

classic agitprop.

Don't trust Browder and his self-interests much but trust this guy less.

Browser knows he'll never see that money again and has spent his own funds on his one man mission

Thordoom , 40 minutes ago

Stupid moron he is spending Knohorkovsky's money and HSBC bank money. Half of the UK and US government officials and intl officials and Harward boys are deeply involved in this looting of Russian people in the 90s.

RationalLuddite , 31 minutes ago

Classic Reverse blockade lie by you Restedliving. Good luck moving the middle on Browder . He's just not that bright in lying so I suppose your Talmudic exegesis honed Accusatory Inversion is worth a try.

Please keep it up. Seriously. "Agitprop"😄😄😄😄

You are like a Browder red-pill dispenser with every incoherent mendacious utterance. Thank you mate :*

WTFUD , 29 minutes ago

Bruiser Browser Browder, ex light-heavyweight champion of La-La Potemkin Village, Ninnyapolis, USA.

Shouldn't Fakebook be banning the US Government for a plethora of Fake News? Then again it's a nice fit for these 2 entities, a cosy relationship.

The Paucity of Hope , 54 minutes ago

Nekrasov's movie has been disappeared, but was excellent. Also, look at The Forecaster, about Martin Armstrong. It talks about Hermatage Capital and was blocked in the US and Switzerland for several years.

Ahmeexnal , 57 minutes ago

Browder must hang!

chunga , 38 minutes ago

Not a single person in the US gov will even acknowledge this. None. Not one.

At the same time the US domestic affairs revolve around unsubstantiated stories of SC nominee penis wagging, special prosecutors investigating **** actress affairs/bribery with POTUS, FBI, DOJ off the rails, while at the same time asserting a moral authority to sanction and/or attack other countries as though it's an obligation or entitlement.

[Sep 17, 2018] Bill Browder Strikes Back In Europe

Sep 17, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

by Tyler Durden Mon, 09/17/2018 - 09:34 27 SHARES Authored by Tom Luongo,

"I am altering the deal. Pray I don't alter it any further."
-- The Empire Strikes Back

Since Vladimir Putin brought up Bill Browder's name in Helsinki, events have escalated to a fever pitch. Russia is under extreme attack the U.S./European financial and political establishment.

And part of that push is coming from Browder himself. In July, just a week after Helsinki, Browder opened up a money laundering complaint against Denmark's largest bank, Danske , alleging over $8 billion in money 'laundered' from Russia, Moldova and Azerbaijan through its Estonian Branch.

The details here are important so bear with me.

Danske's report on these allegations are due on Wednesday.

No matter what they say, however, the die has been cast.

Danske is being targeted for termination by the U.S. and possible takeover by the European Central Bank.

There's precedent for this but let me lay out some background first.

The Oldest Trick

Browder's complaint says the money laundered is in connection with the reason why he was thrown out of Russia and the $230 million in stolen tax money which Browder's cause célèbre , the death of accountant Sergei Magnitsky, hangs on.

That crusade got the Magnitsky Act passed not only in the U.S. but all across the West, with versions on the books in Canada, Australia the EU and other places.

Danske's shares have been gutted in the wake of the accusation.

The U.S. is now investigating this complaint and that shouldn't come as much of a shock.

The Treasury Department can issue whatever findings it wants, and then respond by starving Danske of dollars, known as the "Death Blow" option the threat of which was plastered all over the pages of the Wall St. Journal on Friday.

Note this article isn't behind the Journal's pay-wall. They want everyone to see this.

Browder filed complaints both in Demmark and in Estonia, and the Estonian government was only too happy to oblige him.

The Devil Played

To see the whole picture I have to go back a littler further.

Back in March, Latvian bank, ABLV, was targeted in a similar manner, accused of laundering money. Within a week the ECB moved in to take control of the bank even though it wasn't in danger of failing.

It was an odd move, where the ECB exercised an extreme response utilizing its broader powers given to it after the 2008 financial crisis, like it did with Spain's Banco Popular in 2017.

Why? The U.S. was looking for ways to cut off Russia from the European banking system. And the ECB did its dirty work.

I wrote about this back in May in relation to the Treasury demanding all U.S. investors divest themselves of Russian debt within thirty days.
It threw the ruble and Russian debt markets into turmoil since Russian companies bought a lot of euro-denominated debt after the Ruble Crisis of 2014, having been shut off from dollars.

ABLV was a conduit for many Russian entities to keep access to Europe's banks, having been grandfathered in as clients when the Baltics entered the Euro-zone.

So, now a replay of ABLV's seizure is playing out through Browder's money laundering complaint against Danske.

Was Convincing Everyone

The goal of this lawsuit is two-fold.

The first is to undermine the faith in the Danish banking system. Dutch giant ING is also facing huge AML fines.

This is a direct attack on the EU banking system to being it under even more stringent government control.

The second goal, however, is far more important. As I said, the U.S. is desperate to cut money flow between the European Union and Russia, not just to stop the construction of Nordstream 2, but to keep Russia's markets weak having to scramble for euros to make coupon payments and create a roll-over nightmare.

Turkey is facing this now, Russia went through it in 2014/15.

In response to the Ruble's sharp drop this year on improving fundamentals, the Bank of Russia finally had to raise rates on Friday .

So, attacking a major bank like Danske for consorting with dirty Russians and using Mr. Human Rights Champion Browder to file the complaint is pure power politics to keep the EU itself from seeking rapprochement with Russia.

Anti-Money Laundering laws are tyrannical and vaguely worded. And with the Magnitsky Act and its follow-up, CAATSA, in place, they help support defining money laundering to include anything the U.S. and the EU deem as supporting 'human rights violations.'

Seeing the trap yet?

Now all of it can be linked through simple accusation regardless of the facts. The bank gets gutted, investors and depositors get nervous, the ECB then steps in and there goes another tendril between Russia and Europe doing business.

And that ties into Browder's minions in the European Parliament, all in the pay of Open Society Foundation, issued a threat of invoking Article 7 of the Lisbon Treaty to Cyprus over assisting Russia investigate Browder's financial dealings there.

Why? Violations of Mr. Browder's human rights because, well, Russia!

What's becoming more obvious to me as the days pass is that Browder is an obvious asset of the U.S. financial and political oligarchy, if not U.S. Intelligence. They use his humanitarian bona fides to visit untold misery on millions of people simply to:

1) cover up their malfeasance in Russia

2) wage hybrid war on anyone willing to stand up to their machinations.

He Didn't Exist

Because when looking at this situation rationally, how does this guy get to run around accusing banks of anything and mobilize governments into actions which have massive ramifications for the global financial system unless he's intimately connected with the very people that operate the top of that system?

How does this no-name guy in the mid-1990's, fresh 'off the boat' as it were, convince someone to give him $25 million in CASH to go around Russia buying up privatization vouchers at less than pennies on the dollar?

It simply doesn't pass a basic sniff test.

Danske is the biggest bank in Denmark and one of the oldest in Europe. The message should be clear.

If they can be gotten to this way, anyone can.

Just looking at the list of people named in the Magnitsky Act, a list given to Congress by Browder and copied verbatim without investigation, and CAATSA as being 'friends of Vladimir' it's obvious that the target isn't Putin himself for his human rights transgressions but anyone in Russia with enough capital to maintain a business bigger than a chain of laundromats in Rostov-on-Don.

Honestly, even some in the U.S. financial press said it looked like they just went through the Moscow phone book.

But, here the rub. In The Davos Crowd's single-minded drive to destroy Russia, which has been going on now for close to two generations in various ways, they are willing to undermine the very institutions on which a great deal of their power rests.

The more Browder gets defended by people punching far above his weight, the more obvious it is that there is something wrong with his story. Undermining the reputation of the biggest bank in Denmark is a 'playing-for-keeps' moment.

But, it's one that can and will have serious repercussions over time.

It undermines the validity of government institutions, exposing corruption that proves we live in a world ruled by men, not laws. That the U.S. and EU are fundamentally no different in their leadership than banana republics.

And that's bad for currency and debt markets as capital always flows to where it is treated best.

But, it's one that can and will have serious repercussions over time. The seizure of ABLV and 2017's liquidation of Spain's Banco Popular were rightly described by Martin Armstrong as defining moments where no one in their right mind would invest in a European banks if there was the possibility of losing all of your capital due to a change in the political winds overnight.

Using the European Parliament to censure Cyprus via Article 7 over one man's financial privacy, which no one is guaranteed in this world today thanks to these same AML and KYC laws, reeks of cronyism and corruption of the highest degree.

If you want to know what a catalyst for the collapse of the European banking system looks like, it may well be what happens this week if Danske tries to fight the spider's web laid down by Bill Browder and his friends in high places.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Z_s5cRp5Ikk

* * *

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hanekhw , 1 minute ago

Browder, the Clintons, Soros and the EU were made for each other weren't they? They've been screwing us publicly for what, over two generations? And without a condom! We've gotten how many FTDs (financially transmitted diseases) from these people? They never unzip their flys.

geno-econ , 1 hour ago

According to Browder, Putin is worth over $100 Billion most of it stashed away in foreign banks through intermediates and relatives. If true, it will bring down Putin and many western banks. Perhaps a Red Swan is about to take off exposing an unsustainable .financial system and corrupt political enterprise on both sides of the divide sur to cause chaos. Ironically, Putin who represents Nationalism in Russia is under attack by Globalists accusing Putin of Capitalistic Greed utilizing western banks Suicidal !

hanekhw , 16 minutes ago

Browder, the Clintons, Soros and the EU were made for each other weren't they? They've been screwing us publicly for what, over two generations? And without a condom! We've gotten how many FTDs (financially transmitted diseases) from these people? They never unzip their flys.

zeroboris , 24 minutes ago

They use his humanitarian bona fides

Browder's bona fides? LOL

monad , 8 minutes ago

Minion (((Browder))) snitches on his masters. Nowhere to hide.

Vanilla_ISIS , 18 minutes ago

Someone should just kill this dude. Browder has certainly earned it.

roadhazard , 14 minutes ago

But what about the money laundering.

Panic Mode , 15 minutes ago

You better run. Your buddy McCain is gone and see who else will fight for you.

pndr4495 , 42 minutes ago

Somehow - Mnuchkin's desire to sell his Park Ave. apartment fits into this tale of intrigue and bullshit.

markar , 47 minutes ago

Send this guy Browder a polonium cocktail. It's on me.

TahoeBilly2012 , 1 hour ago

((Browder)) ??

Clogheen , 37 minutes ago

Yes. Did you really need to ask?

geno-econ , 1 hour ago

According to Browder, Putin is worth over $100 Billion most of it stashed away in foreign banks through intermediates and relatives. If true, it will bring down Putin and many western banks. Perhaps a Red Swan is about to take off exposing an unsustainable .financial system and corrupt political enterprise on both sides of the divide sur to cause chaos. Ironically, Putin who represents Nationalism in Russia is under attack by Globalists accusing Putin of Capitalistic Greed utilizing western banks Suicidal !

Max Cynical , 1 hour ago

I watch the banned documentary...The Magnitsky Act - Behind the Scenes.

Here's a link... https://seed02.bitchute.com/40940/lQ3qEwX66pIL.mp4

Browder seems like a real scumbag.

LA_Goldbug , 1 hour ago

Only the slimiest rats get into the club of "Can Do No Wrong" and these types of gigs.

Thaxter , 1 hour ago

This documentary is first class, a really absorbing look into the mind of the sociopath Browder, a pathological, absolutely shameless liar and a very stupid and weak person. To understand the influence that this insignificant invertebrate yields, look to his father, Earl Russell Browder, who was the leader of the Communist Party in the United States during the 1930s and the first half of the 1940s.

blindfaith , 22 minutes ago

Look no further than our own political circus to see that mighty hands pull the strings. Like all strings, they will fray and break...eventually.

Jim in MN , 1 hour ago

Yes well the Big Question for us now is the degree to which the President is in control of any of this.

Recall, dear ZH fighters, how we worked out a sound strategy for the Trump Administration in the early days. Key aspects were to leave the generals and the bankers alone for a couple of years. This would allow immigration, trade, health care and deregulation including tax reform to form the early core wins, along with Supreme Court nominees of course.

Lo, cometh the Deep State and its frantic attempts to both save and conceal itself.

One key tentacle was to rouse the intelligence community into an active enemy of the POTUS. This partially fouled up the 'leave the generals alone' strategy.

Another is to try to force war with the emergent Eurasian hegemony comprised of China and Russia. This is seen all across the 'hinterland' of Russia.

The USA has no vital strategic interests in Eurasia at this juncture of history. Everyone should be clear on that.

The USA's logical and sane policy stance is to support peace, free and fair trade, and stable democracy, including border controls and the rule of law through LEADING BY EXAMPLE.

So for Trump to continue to allow the financial sector Deep State traitors to operate against a peaceful Eurasia is becoming increasingly intolerable.

Where to from here?

BandGap , 1 hour ago

Keep opening it up to scrutiny.

This article opened my eyes, I did not fully understand why Russia was all over Browder except the stealing aspect, but bigger yet, why he was being protected by the EU/US.

No wonder Putin wants to work with the Donno. Taking Browder out and exposing this manipulation works for both sides.

LA_Goldbug , 40 minutes ago

If Browder is a surprise to you then look at Khodorkovsky (there is more of these types from he came from).

Good start is here,

http://thebirdman.org/Index/Others/Others-Doc-Economics&Finance/+Doc-Economics&Finance-GovernmentInfluence&Meddling/BankstersInRussiaAndGlobalEconomy.htm

I am a Man I am Forty , 1 hour ago

This guy is so shady. He's playing some dangerous games.

gmak , 1 hour ago

Huh? Could this be written more poorly?

TheBigOldDog , 1 hour ago

Houston, we have a problem..

akrainer , 1 hour ago

The twice banned book, "Grand Deception" deconstructing Browder's very dangerous game is here, since Amazon delisted its two previous editions:

Pdf / Kindle / Nook

Paperback

LA_Goldbug , 1 hour ago

"He Didn't Exist

Because when looking at this situation rationally, how does this guy get to run around accusing banks of anything and mobilize governments into actions which have massive ramifications for the global financial system unless he's intimately connected with the very people that operate the top of that system?"

Exactly. He was sent by the Anglo-Zionist Tribe otherwise he would be a nobody.

JacquesdeMolay , 1 hour ago

Also, a very good book on the topic: "suppressed and banned by the CIA's supplier, Amazon, The Grand Deception: The Browder Hoax is a highly intelligent, frank and entertaining take-down of one of the biggest hoaxes ever perpetrated on the US public and the world – The Magnitsky Act. Krainer's study of Bill Browder's book and actions is a riveting, unflinching expose of what might end up being pivotal in revealing one of this decade's big hoaxes."

https://thirdalliance.ch/product/grand-deception-the-browder-hoax/

JacquesdeMolay , 2 hours ago

Skullduggery: Confessions of a CIA Asset Bill Browder

[Sep 17, 2018] The west going on attack mode against Cyprus to protect Browder.

Sep 17, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Pft , Sep 17, 2018 12:00:07 AM | link

The west going on attack mode against Cyprus to protect Browder. Cyprus is cooperating with Putin on his financial dealings which all flowed through Cyprus. Lots of skeletons there that implicate many more important people than Browder

[Sep 12, 2018] Real reason for western elite hatred of Russia is that it has destroyed neo con dreams of full spectrum dominance in military affairs.

Sep 12, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ragheb , Sep 12, 2018 3:25:02 PM | link

Real reason for western elite hatred of Russia is that it has destroyed neo con dreams of full spectrum dominance in military affairs. Doubt US would have invaded Iraq in 2003 if Russian military was as strong then as it us today.

bm , Sep 12, 2018 3:40:36 PM | link

In all areas held by jihadis the most difficult issue was how to blow them up and not the civilians they were holding hostage. The Syrian and Russian strategy has been from the start to let the jihadis do their thing, wait, never escalate but negotiate, so as to avoid civilian casualties. This strategy has worked to win the war, and seems to be the same one they're following in Idlib. In contrast to previous hawkish threats by FUKUS and Nato, the propaganda mills are churning out much milder fare than previously. The Israelis have started admitting they were supporting '12' terror groups in Syria, and French ex foreign minister of defense, now 'minister for Europe and foreign affairs' Jean-Yves Le Drian, has declared that Nato has lost the war, but Assad has not 'won the peace'. Assad and Putin have learnt the lesson long ago, that they cannot negotiate with terrorists like Le Drian, and are better off negotiating with Erdogan, AlQaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood.

[Sep 07, 2018] Making Russia 'The Enemy' – Consortiumnews

Notable quotes:
"... America's Stolen Narrative, ..."
"... It is the country where school children put on monthly plays and begin to recite poetry in first grade. ..."
"... Russia did not hack German voting machines so that Angela Merkel's total percentage would be less than projected. ..."
"... Oh by the way Craig Murray was relieved of his British post. Not quite sure why. ..."
Sep 07, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Making Russia 'The Enemy' December 15, 2016 • 156 Comments

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Exclusive: Despite conflicting accounts about who leaked the Democratic emails, the frenzy over an alleged Russian role is driving the U.S. deeper into a costly and dangerous New Cold War, writes Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

The rising hysteria about Russia is best understood as fulfilling two needs for Official Washington: the Military Industrial Complex's transitioning from the "war on terror" to a more lucrative "new cold war" – and blunting the threat that a President Trump poses to the neoconservative/liberal-interventionist foreign-policy establishment.

By hyping the Russian "threat," the neocons and their liberal-hawk sidekicks, who include much of the mainstream U.S. news media, can guarantee bigger military budgets from Congress. The hype also sets in motion a blocking maneuver to impinge on any significant change in direction for U.S. foreign policy under Trump.

Wintery scene at Red Square in Moscow, Dec. 6, 2016. (Photo by Robert Parry)

Some Democrats even hope to stop Trump from ascending to the White House by having the Central Intelligence Agency, in effect, lobby the electors in the Electoral College with scary tales about Russia trying to fix the election for Trump.

The electors meet on Dec. 19 when they will formally cast their votes, supposedly reflecting the judgments of each state's voters, but conceivably individual electors could switch their ballots from Trump to Hillary Clinton or someone else.

On Thursday, liberal columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. joined the call for electors to flip, writing : "The question is whether Trump, Vladimir Putin and, perhaps, Clinton's popular-vote advantage give you sufficient reason to blow up the system."

That Democrats would want the CIA, which is forbidden to operate domestically in part because of its historic role in influencing elections in other countries, to play a similar role in the United States shows how desperate the Democratic Party has become.

And, even though The New York Times and other big news outlets are reporting as flat fact that Russia hacked the Democratic email accounts and gave the information to WikiLeaks, former British Ambassador Craig Murray, a close associate of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, told the London Daily Mail that he personally received the email data from a "disgusted" Democrat.

Murray said he flew from London to Washington for a clandestine handoff from one of the email sources in September, receiving the package in a wooded area near American University.

Former British Ambassador Craig Murray

"Neither of [the leaks, from the Democratic National Committee or Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta] came from the Russians," Murray said, adding: "the source had legal access to the information. The documents came from inside leaks, not hacks."

Murray said the insider felt "disgust at the corruption of the Clinton Foundation and the tilting of the primary election playing field against Bernie Sanders." Murray added that his meeting was with an intermediary for the Democratic leaker, not the leaker directly.

[ Update: Murray subsequently said his contact with the intermediary at American University was not for the purpose of obtaining a batch of the purloined emails, as the Daily Mail reported, since WikiLeaks already had them. He said the Mail simply added that detail to the story, but Murray declined to explain why he had the meeting at A.U. with the whistleblower or an associate.]

If Murray's story is true, it raises several alternative scenarios: that the U.S. intelligence community's claims about a Russian hack are false; that Russians hacked the Democrats' emails for their own intelligence gathering without giving the material to WikiLeaks; or that Murray was deceived about the identity of the original leaker.

But the uncertainty creates the possibility that the Democrats are using a dubious CIA assessment to reverse the outcome of an American presidential election, in effect, making the CIA party to a preemptive domestic "regime change."

Delayed Autopsy

All of this maneuvering also is delaying the Democratic Party's self-examination into why it lost so many white working-class voters in normally Democratic strongholds, such as Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Rather than national party leaders taking the blame for pre-selecting a very flawed candidate and ignoring all the warning signs about the public's resistance to this establishment choice, Democrats have pointed fingers at almost everyone else – from FBI Director James Comey for briefly reviving Clinton's email investigation, to third-party candidates who siphoned off votes, to the archaic Electoral College which negates the fact that Clinton did win the national popular vote – and now to the Russians.

FBI Director James Comey

While there may be some validity to these various complaints, the excessive frenzy that has surrounded the still-unproven claims that the Russian government surreptitiously tilted the election in Trump's favor creates an especially dangerous dynamic.

On one level, it has led Democrats to support Orwellian/ McCarthyistic concepts, such as establishing "black lists" for Internet sites that question Official Washington's "conventional wisdom" and thus are deemed purveyors of "Russian propaganda" or "fake news."

On another level, it cements the Democratic Party as America's preeminent "war party," favoring an escalating New Cold War with Russia by ratcheting up economic sanctions against Moscow, and even seeking military challenges to Russia in conflict zones such as Syria and Ukraine.

One of the most dangerous aspects of a prospective Hillary Clinton presidency was that she would have appointed neocons, such as Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland and her husband, Project for the New American Century co-founder Robert Kagan, to high-level foreign policy positions.

Though that risk may have passed assuming Clinton's Electoral College defeat on Monday, Democrats now are excitedly joining the bash-Russia movement, making it harder to envision how the party can transition back into its more recent role as the "peace party" (at least relative to the extremely hawkish Republicans).

Trading Places

The potential trading places of the two parties in that regard – with Trump favoring geopolitical détente and the Democrats beating the drums for more military confrontations – augurs poorly for the Democrats regaining their political footing anytime soon.

Red Square in Moscow with a winter festival to the left and the Kremlin to the right, on Dec. 6, 2016. (Photo by Robert Parry)

If Democratic leaders press ahead, in alliance with neoconservative Republicans, on demands for escalating the New Cold War with Russia, they could precipitate a party split between Democratic hawks and doves, a schism that likely would have occurred if Clinton had been elected but now may happen anyway, albeit without the benefit of the party holding the White House.

The first test of this emerging Democratic-neocon alliance may come over Trump's choice for Secretary of State, Exxon-Mobil's chief executive Rex Tillerson, who doesn't exhibit the visceral hatred of Russian President Vladimir Putin that Democrats are encouraging.

As an international business executive, Tillerson appears to share Trump's real-politik take on the world, the idea that doing business with rivals makes more sense than conspiring to force "regime change" after "regime change."

Over the past several decades, the "regime change" approach has been embraced by both neocons and liberal interventionists and has been implemented by both Republican and Democratic administrations. Sometimes, it's done through war and other times through "color revolutions" – always under the idealistic guise of "democracy promotion" or "protecting human rights."

But the problem with this neo-imperialist strategy has been that it has failed miserably to improve the lives of the people living in the "regime-changed" countries. Instead, it has spread chaos across wide swaths of the globe and has now even destabilized Europe.

Yet, the solution, as envisioned by the neocons and their liberal-hawk understudies, is simply to force more "regime change" medicine down the throats of the world's population. The new "great" idea is to destabilize nuclear-armed Russia by making its economy scream and by funding as many anti-Putin elements as possible to create the nucleus for a "color revolution" in Moscow.

To justify that risky scheme, there has been a broad expansion of anti-Russian propaganda now being funded with tens of millions of dollars in taxpayer money as well as being pushed by government officials giving off-the-record briefings to mainstream media outlets.

However, as with earlier "regime change" plans, the neocons and liberal hawks never think through the scenario to the end. They always assume that everything is going to work out fine and some well-dressed "opposition leader" who has been to their think-tank conferences will simply ascend to the top job.

Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland during a press conference at the U.S. Embassy in Kiev, Ukraine, on Feb. 7, 2014. (U.S. State Department photo)

Remember, in Iraq, it was going to be Ahmed Chalabi who was beloved in Official Washington but broadly rejected by the Iraqi people. In Libya, there has been a parade of U.S.-approved "unity" leaders who have failed to pull that country together.

In Ukraine, Nuland's choice – Arseniy "Yats is the guy" Yatsenyuk – resigned amid broad public disapproval earlier this year after pushing through harsh cuts in social programs, even as the U.S.-backed regime officials in Kiev continued to plunder Ukraine's treasury and misappropriate Western economic aid.

Nuclear-Armed Destabilization

But the notion of destabilizing nuclear-armed Russia is even more hare-brained than those other fiascos. The neocon/liberal-hawk assumption is that Russians – pushed to the brink of starvation by crippling Western sanctions – will overthrow Putin and install a new version of Boris Yeltsin who would then let U.S. financial advisers return with their neoliberal "shock therapy" of the 1990s and again exploit Russia's vast resources.

Indeed, it was the Yeltsin era and its Western-beloved "shock therapy" that created the desperate conditions before the rise of Putin with his autocratic nationalism, which, for all its faults, has dramatically improved the lives of most Russians.

Bright lights on Red Square, Dec. 6, 2016. (Photo by Robert Parry)

So, the more likely result from the neocon/liberal-hawk "regime change" plans for Moscow would be the emergence of someone even more nationalistic – and likely far less stable – than Putin, who is regarded even by his critics as cold and calculating.

The prospect of an extreme Russian nationalist getting his or her hands on the Kremlin's nuclear codes should send chills up and down the spines of every American, indeed every human being on the planet. But it is the course that key national Democrats appear to be on with their increasingly hysterical comments about Russia.

The Democratic National Committee issued a statement on Wednesday accusing Trump of giving Russia "an early holiday gift that smells like a payoff. It's rather easy to connect the dots. Russia meddled in the U.S. election in order to benefit Trump and now he's repaying Vladimir Putin by nominating Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as secretary of state."

Besides delaying a desperately needed autopsy on why Democrats did so badly in an election against the also-widely-disliked Donald Trump, the new blame-Russia gambit threatens to hurt the Democrats and their preferred policies in another way.

If Democrats vote in bloc against Tillerson or other Trump foreign-policy nominees – demanding that he appoint people acceptable to the neocons and the liberal hawks – Trump might well be pushed deeper into the arms of right-wing Republicans, giving them more on domestic issues to solidify their support on his foreign-policy goals.

That could end up redounding against the Democrats as they watch important social programs gutted in exchange for their own dubious Democratic alliance with the neocons.

Since the presidency of Bill Clinton, the Democrats have courted factions of the neocons, apparently thinking they are influential because they dominate many mainstream op-ed pages and Washington think tanks. In 1993, as a thank-you gift to the neocon editors of The New Republic for endorsing him, Clinton appointed neocon ideologue James Woolsey as head of the CIA, one of Clinton's more disastrous personnel decisions.

But the truth appears to be that the neocons have much less influence across the U.S. electoral map than the Clintons think. Arguably, their pandering to a clique of Washington insiders who are viewed as warmongers by many peace-oriented Democrats may even represent a net negative when it comes to winning votes.

I've communicated with a number of traditional Democrats who didn't vote for Hillary Clinton because they feared she would pursue a dangerous neocon foreign policy . Obviously, that's not a scientific survey, but the anecdotal evidence suggests that Clinton's neocon connections could have been another drag on her campaign.

Assessing Russia

I also undertook a limited personal test regarding whether Russia is the police state that U.S. propaganda depicts, a country yearning to break free from the harsh grip of Vladimir Putin (although he registers 80 or so percent approval in polls).

Couple walking along the Kremlin wall, Dec. 7, 2016. (Photo by Robert Parry)

During my trip last week to Europe, which included stops in Brussels and Copenhagen, I decided to take a side trip to Moscow, which I had never visited before. What I encountered was an impressive, surprisingly (to me at least) Westernized city with plenty of American and European franchises, including the ubiquitous McDonald's and Starbucks. (Russians serve the Starbucks gingerbread latte with a small ginger cookie.)

Though senior Russian officials proved unwilling to meet with me, an American reporter, at this time of tensions, Russia had little appearance of a harshly repressive society. In my years covering U.S. policies in El Salvador in the 1980s and Haiti in the 1990s, I have experienced what police states look and feel like, where death squads dump bodies in the streets. That was not what I sensed in Moscow, just a modern city with people bustling about their business under early December snowfalls.

The police presence in Red Square near the Kremlin was not even as heavy-handed as it is near the government buildings of Washington. Instead, there was a pre-Christmas festive air to the brightly lit Red Square, featuring a large skating rink surrounded by small stands selling hot chocolate, toys, warm clothing and other goods.

Granted, my time and contact with Russians were limited – since I don't speak Russian and most of them don't speak English – but I was struck by the contrast between the grim images created by Western media and the Russia that I saw.

It reminded me of how President Ronald Reagan depicted Sandinista-ruled Nicaragua as a "totalitarian dungeon" with a militarized state ready to march on Texas, but what I found when I traveled to Managua was a third-world country still recovering from an earthquake and with a weak security structure despite the Contra war that Reagan had unleashed against Nicaragua.

In other words, " perception management " remains the guiding principle of how the U.S. government deals with the American people, scaring us with exaggerated tales of foreign threats and then manipulating our fears and our misperceptions.

As dangerous as that can be when we're talking about Nicaragua or Iraq or Libya, the risks are exponentially higher regarding Russia. If the American people are stampeded into a New Cold War based more on myths than reality, the minimal cost could be the trillions of dollars diverted from domestic needs into the Military Industrial Complex. The far-greater cost could be some miscalculation by either side that could end life on the planet.

So, as the Democrats chart their future, they need to decide if they want to leapfrog the Republicans as America's "war party" or whether they want to pull back from the escalation of tensions with Russia and start addressing the pressing needs of the American people.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America's Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com ).


Ray Western , December 20, 2016 at 12:11 pm

When I think about what the Neocons have done to the Mid East with their goal to change regimes that we do not approve of it makes me shudder. I wonder why there are not protesters in the streets like there was in Vietnam Nam. Why isn't there more news agencies protesting our actions? Why isn't George Bush being tried for war crimes by world or US courts? Trump talks about building up our military. I hope this will not lead to more conflicts and an increase in our national debt. Why can't there be a larger effort to print the truth about Putin and Russia? Keep up your efforts to spread the truth. Thank God that Hillary was not elected.

FREDERIC PALAY , December 19, 2016 at 10:04 am

Refreshing article among all the post Trump election hysterical propaganda. Particularly telling for me because I have been one of those lured in thinking that a regime change in Irak could not be worse than what was happening, Kurdes being gased by the hundred of thousand, Israel being attacked with incentives given by Saddam to terrorists, and soon the French giving him access to their nuclear program, plus naturally the WMDs . I know now that it was wrong, and that we have enough domestic problems to fix before trying to interfere into foreign complex cultural grounds.
Yet I think that the biggest element that can explain Clinton's defeat is the massive demographic miscalculation the Democrats have been making for decades. They came up with this crazy strategy of dividing the American People into more and more competing minorities, prying electorally on real and invented specialty oppressions, pretending that only them could champion the oppressed in exchange for their votes. Doing so, they did not see that they were collaterally creating a class of oppressors, who they would depict, on and on, as bigots, uneducated, bigots and the soon-to-be-electorally-irrelevant white class.
This strategy backlashed, in a revolt of these "whites", and more importantly showed that what they wanted to consider as a separate voting class, the "hispanics" voted like "whites" Because they feel and are white!
I was not surprised by this brutal correction of what was only a narrative supporting a populist electoral strategy. I live in Florida, immersed in these "hispanics", but overall because I am European, I saw from there beginning the artificiality of the stratagem. Try in Europe to call the Spanish and Portuguese people "hispanic, or to enroll the Greeks, the Corsican, the Italian in a non white minority, Not only people would laugh, but they would call you a racist.

Joe L. , December 18, 2016 at 8:34 pm

Oh and here is a link to the article in the Daily Mail UK that Ex-British ambassador, who is now a WikiLeaks operative, claims Russia did NOT provide Clinton emails – they were handed over to him at a D.C. park by an intermediary for 'disgusted' Democratic whistleblowers:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4034038/Ex-British-ambassador-WikiLeaks-operative-claims-Russia-did-NOT-provide-Clinton-emails-handed-D-C-park-intermediary-disgusted-Democratic-insiders.html

Emanuel E Garcia , December 18, 2016 at 5:17 am

Excellent article, Mr. Parry.

I was in Russia not so long ago, and I had some observations to make in this brief essay, "The Russians Are Coming Again?"

http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/18968

What worries me so tremendously is the simplistic barbarism of these attacks on Russia: pure jaded propaganda, which, sadly and unbelievably enough, too many people are too eager to swallow.

Rob , December 17, 2016 at 1:39 pm

The surest sign that the NYT and the rest of the MSM are in the bag with regard to the "blame Russia" campaign is their failure even to mention (at least to my knowledge) Craig Murray's claim that he received the DNC info from a leaker inside the organization. This claim may or not be true, but it is at least worth reporting and considering as a possible explanation for how Wikileaks came to possess the material. That said, the manner in which Wikileaks released the information so as to maximize damage to the Clinton campaign makes me wonder about the mental health of Julian Assange. Four years of confinement to a room can mess with your mind.

Robert Keith , December 18, 2016 at 12:11 am

Not only the story Craig Murray but how about the story of Podesta having willingly surrendered his password to a (the) hacker. If the contents of a hack are true, what's the hullabaloo all about.

Professor T , December 17, 2016 at 11:30 am

Thanks for this article. I never believed this crap about the Russians hacking the election. The U.S. Election process is a sham which disenfranchises voters across the board. I believe that both parties have their hands in these elections right down to the Board of Elections and electoral colleges in each of these states. When Bernie Sanders ran in NY, I believe the Demorcratic Party and the Board of Elections especially in NYC made it hard for him to get elected. All of a sudden in Brooklyn registered voters were not found, like 125,000 voters . Really? NY was a state also named with Southern states in the 60's as a state that disenfranchised voters. I am not surprised. I am not a fan of Bill Clinton or Hillary Clinton. They definitely have not improved the lives of African Americans or any other Americans. Only the lives of those within their inner circle. They are exploiters to the highest degree. She lost because Americans rejected her and her ideals. They said enough. We don't need another Clinton in the White House to do Part 2 of how to disenfranchise and destabilize American people. I am not a Trump fan either, but if he won the election fair and scare I can't argue with that. The Democratic and Republican parties are not in touch with the American people. The election process needs to be reformed where if you don't have money, you don' t have influence. They are corrupt on both sides. It is pay for play and I am sure that is not how the forefathers intended this to be or maybe it was .. Time to clean house and that is on both sides. Whether they are White, Black, or any other persuasion, they are corrupt. Rome is Burning!!

R. Rivera , December 16, 2016 at 6:09 pm

Russia may have tried to influence the election, it might be a frame job, or it might be a collaborator in this election. It does not matter. I suspect the election really was rigged ( the fbi's comey did his part ) but it was rigged in favor of trump

When I see someone pointing and yelling "crook!" as trump did, I always suspect the yeller (trump) is the one causing the problem. Remember gingrich complaining about clinton's morality and pointing the finger with disgust? He should have resigned since he was cheating on mrs. gingrich AND kept it a secret while on his moral crusade. I have not been wrong yet when I see this behavior.

The cia with a suspected history of interring with other nations is complaining about russia's interference? We must be in trouble.

This was not an election. It was a coup to elect the new puppet president trump. We need to expose the puppeteers.

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 5:46 pm

Obama today: basically all the messes, conflicts, disputes, wars and so on that he has created in the world, and the reason Hillary wasn't given "her turn," are OUR fault because we can't accept the lies he promulgates on the mainstream media and we insist on going to alternate sources. And, of course, extrapolating that logic will justify commiting an act of war against Russia, which he promises to do.

https://news.grabien.com/story-obama-blames-talk-radio-domestic-propagandists-rise-state-sp

How can we get this guy outta there before he blows up the planet? Trump must take to the airwaves to defend himself against the accusations or possibly be removed in a coup being orchestrated by this sullen hater. This is spiraling downhill fast and, from the comments on internet forums, war fever is in the air, proving Obama is more dangerous than any "fake news" outlet.

Michael K. , December 16, 2016 at 4:29 pm

There is an uncomfortable truth about those who led the Old Bolsheviks and their b;loody terrors, who looted Russia under Yeltsin, and who leads the neoconservative core of the anti-Russia pundits:

http://www.softpanorama.org/Skeptics/Pseudoscience/harvard_mafia.shtml

They were and are disproportionately Jewish, but we are not supposed to note it, lest this curious FACT "offend" someone who is offended by . the truth.

So, we can't talk about a major [though not necessarily predominant] element of who is leading the anti-Russian rhetoric in DC and media so let's pretend it isn't playing a role here.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 6:12 pm

Why are we so concerned (as per Pres. Obama's press conference this morning) about the unproved possibility of a foreign power's (like Russia, for example) influence (if true, it was positive) on our election, when Israel, through AIPAC and the American Jewish Communuty, etal., ALREADY HAS a far greater influence (especially being negative) on our elections. Another example of an egregious double-standard being applied to Israel. In fact, Israel is just sort of a co-partner here in the U.S.. Why is a foreign-born, Israeli dual-national, former Governor of the Bank of Israel, Stanley Fisher, the 2nd man at the Federal Reserve?Why were we pretending that Jonathon Pollard was a spy? What is the average percentage of votes in the Congress on legislation relating to Israel? To which country do we give more Foreign Aid than any other country even though "Aid" denotes, not connotes, that the country is "needy". To which country did we just sign a $38 billion (10-year) Charity package, which purports to be Military, but is highly fungible, meaning that can be used for the financing of settlements or whatever the f**k they want to use it for, like, haredim welfare. Bottom line:President Obama and all the Neo-Con Russia bashers are first class hypocrites, trying to exorcize (or exercise) an historic grudge against the Russian Tsars. Why is this country being pushed into wars that do not concern us, but rather a country with a wall around it that wishes to expand its borders, because our Congressmen and President are owned by them?

John Hope , December 16, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Brilliant article and some brilliant comments. We live now in a very small world and if you can't see your connection to your neighbour wherever and whoever that may be you are not awake. I drive a car so I have to think about that and notwithstanding the necessity of that I have to think about the bigger picture and maybe next year it should be an electric car , or no car . This whole fabrication about the Russians simply isn't washing with us common people, so the perception management of not just the Democrats , but politicians in general is so wide of the mark after Trump and Brexit they just don't know what to do. They thought they had it all wrapped up and then along came the Internet ..

sanford sklansky , December 16, 2016 at 3:15 pm

A good article and maybe demonizing Russia for the wrong reasons. But lets not forget that Putin is running a kleptocracy. There is no freedom of speech. Certainly no paper that can speak out against him or the Russian government. The anti gay laws are terrible. You were only in Russia for a short time. I don't know if you can gauge much just from walking around Red Square. And while there didn't appear to be a big police presence I am guessing it was there and you were unaware. I am assuming that your passport says you are a reporter. No doubt some one was probably watching where you were going and who you might be talking to.

James lake , December 17, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Wow this is the arrogant way of thinking that is at the root of world problems
What has their form of govt got to do with you.???
The Russian people have shown over the years that they don't take any nonsense and if the feel their govt is not working for them they will make themselves heard.

K. Geebee , December 16, 2016 at 3:05 pm

Is this article a joke? So this guys walks around Moscow for a day speaking no Russian and is able to 'deduce' that Russia is like any Western democracy, with Putin its misunderstood, magnanimous ruler. And this allows him to claim to know better than Russian dissenters or Western journalists who actually speak Russian and understand its propaganda. No wonder this site was listed as a Russian stooge. And all the commenters praising his acumen (he went to a Russian starbucks, wow!) is even funnier

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 4:00 pm

You assholes from Langley here taking names or something? Go tell your sycophantic acting boss Michael Morell that he's not funny, he's psychotic.

Josh Laudermilk , December 17, 2016 at 4:18 am

@Realist,

Michael Morell was another shadowy figure that was insistent that Hillary Clinton deserves to be anointed POTUS and leader of "the Free World" (only the USA is free, not Finland, Sweden, Netherlands or anywhere else knows what 'democracy' really is). Did you know that Mike Morell actually said we should be killing Russians in Ukraine? He openly said that. When I heard him say that, as opposed to something I would have said, like "I want Russia to join NATO. I want to have joint military operations with Russia. I want to have a joint counter-terrorist command. We can and should be fighting Wahhabi terrorists together."

Mr. Morell openly approves of murdering Russians wholesale, whenever they are found outside the borders of their country (which Mike Morell wishes would recede even further, to shrink Russia as much as possible). There were no consequences for his genocidal and violent hate speech, which I would expect from a Salafist minister, not a former Acting Director of the nation's premier 'intelligence' agency. The word intelligence being used in the loosest manner as all possible.

Realist, whoever you are, why should I or anyone trust the CIA about this past election? Seriously, the CIA is the master at electoral rigging, psychological warfare, deception, counter-operations, and murder. For decades, the CIA rigged the elections of Japan so that the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP being the CIA approved polity in Japan) would win ever single time. And the LDP has ruled the county almost uninterruptedly, with an exception when, for a short time, the opposition party (the Democratic Party) had a majority before being brought down by corruption scandals.

Or what about all the election rigging that the CIA performed in Italy during the 1950ies? I could go on, but the CIA has a long history of "hacking" elections and controlling the polity of other nations, through rigging, murder and coups.

Realist , December 17, 2016 at 4:22 pm

That's why I mentioned Morell rather than Brennan. You caught my drift. Good.

Jerry Falkenstein , December 16, 2016 at 1:29 pm

Just wondering, Is the world better off now or changed for the better since the a-holes started the war with Iraq?

Drew Hunkins , December 16, 2016 at 12:47 pm

It's just so bananas, it's hard to put into words how so much of the mainstream press is lapping up and disseminating the drivel that "Putin/Russian gov't hacked the election to tilt it to Trump!" The hysteria is strikingly similar to what went on in 2003 during the run-up to the Iraq war debacle. Repetition is hardening into orthodoxy in some quarters and smart liberals should know better than to give these insane charges the veneer of credibility.

It's crucial to note that what's been going on over the last month or so is that there's a serious battle being waged amongst our ruling class behind the scenes (sometimes referred to as the "Deep State"). From what I can make of it, on one side sits Trump, Big Oil and elements of the FBI versus virtually all of the establishment mass media and press, DNC insiders, much of the CIA, and elements of the Zionist power configuration and Saudi terror network who want war on Iran – not market driven empire building with Iran which is what Tillerson's likely to propose. Of course another element of the Zionist power configuration is quite pleased that Trump's appointing Palestinian land grabbers too.

This internecine battle being waged between our elites is incredibly fascinating to witness. Of course that it has the potential to spiral out of control is undoubtedly worrisome and means true progressives and lefties have their work cut out for them over the coming months and years.

Josh Stern , December 16, 2016 at 2:22 pm

Deep State is true – two sides in the Deep State is not true. Is the FBI really opposite to the CIA – no, the FBI is the CIA security force. It has never prosecuted any CIA related "crime" except for whistleblower leaks. Why doesn't Trump "side" make the point that the news story in the leaks was a fraudulent – and probably criminal – sabotaging of Sanders' campaign, which the DNC is hoping its members will forget about? That is very damaging to the DNC why are all the Republicans so quiet about it?

War/security state money benefits from war or heightened readiness for war. It is constantly looking for boogeyman threats to justify more spending on the security state. No matter that US produces over 95% of the world's weapons. No matter that US defense budget is greater than next 7 states combined. We need more of that $$$ security. Lot of threats don't you know. Russia – it is alleged without proof – might sneak in and tell us about how corrupt our 2 political parties are. Can't have that.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 12:05 pm

President Obama is just caving in all over the place like a blob of jello (no excuses for mixing metaphors here when the issue is so egregious)-too many instances to even itemize here, let alone comment on. One incident, though, I remember seems to symbolize his lamentable state of mind: when he pulled up to the welcoming (some welcome) stand in Beijing several months ago. Surprise: no red carpet like the other Heads of State. A deliberate slight? Absolutely. How did he react. Like a President of the United States? Absolutely not! He dropped the stairs that AF One carries in its nose for just such occasions and sortied as if nothing had happened. In fact, what had happened is that he had sloughed off the insult like a Black man because he couldn't do anything about it, when he should have sat tight until a red carper appeared, or left, and the United States had suffered a huge hit to its prestige. Childish? I don't think so. If he had stayed put, that red carpet would have appeared. So the problem is that Barack Obama does not represent the people he purports to, because he cannot identify with them. Bottom line: this country cannot have another President from a minority group. let alone a disadvantaged one. We have now had our Black president, just like we had our Black mayor of NYC. It won't happen again, but it's good that it happened once to show why it won't work, and hopefully will put a brake on the multicultural hype. We would wager that the Jews would never be so stupid as to allow one of theirs to be our President.

Daniel Foley , December 16, 2016 at 12:58 pm

I would like to know many posters on this site support this racist rant. If you do support it please post your support of it along with any other minorities you hate.

Daniel Foley , December 16, 2016 at 1:10 pm

The posting should read: "I would like to know how many posters . . . . Sorry for the typo

JOHN CHUCKMAN , December 16, 2016 at 11:43 am

I'm not sure I agree about motives.

Consider this recent statement by Obama concerning "hacking": 'We need to take action and we will at a time and place of our choosing'

It just does not come more completely brainless than this.

And, given his powerful position, more irresponsible.

Take revenge?

For what?

For someone's assertion, unsupported by a scrap of proof?

An assertion by one political appointee at CIA who is not supported by any of the sister intelligence agencies or any physical evidence whatsoever? Even the otherwise pathetic John Kerry has backed off confirming this rubbish.

An assertion whose obvious motive is to get back at the winning candidate, someone you don't like?

This sick man, Obama – a failure in virtually everything he has attempted as President from domestic policy to foreign relations, and a man who has killed hundreds of thousands of innocents abroad, too – is also trying to get back at the government which thwarted his bad intentions in Syria and in Ukraine.

That government embarrassed him before the entire world in his pursuit of ill-considered policies.

Of course, he is trying to get back at Trump because Obama knows Trump is going to quickly extinguish most of what he has done, his sad little pile of stuff, his so-called legacy.

Well, here's Obama's real legacy, making threats and calling names, threatening innocent people with an abuse of power. Of course, I think we can all agree that while profoundly stupid, this behavior of Obama seems almost elevated compared to his construction and oversight of an entire machinery for extrajudicial killing in many lands.

I am beginning to think Obama has gone mad, just adding to all the other deficiencies of his character and personality. Can he not see how ridiculous he is making charges and threats like this? Apparently not, which is a strong indicator of irrationality.

Here is a 2016 version of drunken old Senator Joe McCarthy waving handfuls of blank papers he calls lists and threatening what he calls traitors in the American government. Only the 2016 version sits in the Oval Office, and he has access to the nuclear launch codes.

This is deeply concerning behavior from a man in such a position.

And if the mainline press were not totally biased towards the war party of the neocons and its defeated candidate, the most corrupt and vicious person ever to run for President, it would be saying so, not giving credibility to blubbering insanity by covering it as though it were sound speech.

Dan Kuhn , December 16, 2016 at 10:55 am

The latest breathlessly broadcast news from CNN, BBC and all over print media this morning and without one shred of proof presented I might add) is that Putin himself signed off on the interference in the American Presidential election.

This was to be expected following the defeat of the CIA funded, trained and armed Terrorists in Syria. to attempt to lay the blame on anything else is to attribute the ability of the American Government and it´s multitude of intelligence agencies with an attention span that is longer than a single news cycle. Every setback must be met immediately with a deluge of hysterical propaganda against someone in a foreign country, the current enemy du jour being President Putin.

In short, the !/10 of 1% Elites in the US did not get the coronation of the President they wanted. Now they are more than willing to take the country to the very brink of nuclear war to make sure that the electorate gets back in line and marches to the Elite´s tune. For sure they will not risk the Hamptons in a nuclear war, but will push the envelope right to it´s breaking point. The great unwashed in the USA has risen and now must be pushed back into their former prostate position, and begging for handouts from their criminal Elite. For the Elites, their worse fear has been realized.

Drew Hunkins , December 16, 2016 at 11:41 am

Mr. Kuhn, you make incredibly astute points.
I can't believe this wave of propaganda we're witnessing. And millions of my fellow American citizens will lap all this up.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 10:50 am

Thank you, Vladimir Putin for having helped defeat Hillary Clinton and installed Donald Trump in the White House, and, by the way, congratulations, for having had the effrontery to protect your own national security and taken back Crimea from the Neo-Con State Department-backed coup-plotters. We support you, our Christian brothers. Please continue with your sensible policies.

The Real American People

AG , December 16, 2016 at 10:44 am

Thank you, Robert and Consortium News. As a Russian born, now Russian-American citizen, I am left aghast by the self-serving incitement of the media. Your reporting is a an island of reason and reassurance for me, as I watch New York Times, NPR and the rest tie up my homeland to the whipping post.

I return to Russia nearly every other year to both my rural hometown and metropolitan Moscow. Moscow is the only place in the world where I was served a $9 cup of coffee. Russia is and has been flourishing for decades. For a long time, Russians were interested in the United States and appreciated the western model of capitalism. Various civil groups have been organizing exchanges between the two countries with great fervor. From ballet schools in New York City to forestry crews on Lake Baikal, Russians were eager for a warmer and open relationship with the United States.

There is a Russia beyond Putin that few dare to speak of. It is the country I know. It is the country where school children put on monthly plays and begin to recite poetry in first grade. It is the country where women receive generous government sponsored child-rearing subsidies to stay home longer. It is a country where those mothers then mourn, and have been mourning, the tens of millions of soldiers who never came home during the World Wars as well the modern, bloody political games with neighboring Chechnya, Ukraine and now, Syria.

Russians are, too, spoon-fed typical nationalist propaganda. Many, including myself, are now wondering about the US and its intentions. Many didn't like the impact of sanctions on the price of groceries and gas. Russians don't understand why America all of a sudden hates them so much. Many mothers are scared. They don't want another world war.

Is this all in the name of democracy and human rights? As someone who works with homeless youth and adults in rural New England, I've got a lot to say about that.

Thanks again, Robert.

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 11:15 am

I can see how you would be confused by the actions of your new country against your native land. It was unconscionable how Obama's state department set Ukrainians against Russians in a coup meant to expand NATO and the EU, to snatch the naval base at Sevastopol away from Russia, and to station missiles pointed at Moscow only a few hundred miles away. The deadly putsch, the fire bombings of Odessa and the rocket attacks on the Donbass from Kiev were all totally uncalled for simply because Yanukovich decided that Putin had offered a better financial deal than did the EU and the IMF. But America is very proficient at demonizing any leader or government they want out of the way. I'm surprised you haven't come to hate America for persecuting your people. I know that I hate what we do to numerous other countries, and I hate heartless bastards like Obama and Clinton who make it all happen without the slightest compunctions. America owes Russia a big apology for what we have been doing to that country, but, knowing Americans, never expect one. We are the most self-righteous, "persecuted," paranoid, entitled, loud-mouthed, arrogant people on the planet but far from exceptional. The people who are exceptional are those whom we tread on and yet prevail.

Bill Bodden , December 16, 2016 at 1:45 pm

It is the country where school children put on monthly plays and begin to recite poetry in first grade.

How about the teachers? Do they carry guns to school so they can have a shootout with some crackpot having easy access to guns? Or, is this another area where Russia lags blissfully behind the US?

Josh Laudermilk , December 16, 2016 at 9:55 am

To my fellow Americans,

I am begging you, ALL of you, whatever your political stripe, whatever your social status, whoever you are: Female, Black, Native American, Jewish, Gay, Transsexual/Transgender (and fuck yeah, I support all minorities and all peoples, including race, sex and gender). Whoever the fuck you are; DO NOT fall for this Russophobic, Anti-Russian bullshit. I beg of you. This is a concerted effort by the West to demonize Russia and paint Vlad Putin as a James Bond-esque villain. They want you to swallow this shit up whole, so you will be distracted from the fact that your overseers (the Powers That Be, the political and financial elite) continue to blight your lives as they exploit you and you languish in suffering.

Russia is not to blame. Vlad Putin, whatever one makes of him, is not to blame. And look, I don't like Putin for a variety of reasons. He has continued the Corporatocracy set up by Boris Yeltsin and 'the Family'. He continues to support a particularly cruel form of capitalism. He also supports what could be called Eastern Orthodox fundamentalism. He conflates homosexuality with pedophilia/hebephilia/ephebophilia. But we should not go to war with Russia or make an enemy out of Russia. Vlad Putin is not to blame for Western aggression.

Don't allow our leaders to sell this message. Tell them, we aren't buying and we are not going to creep into a New Cold War, let alone support sending the sons and daughters of other people to their deaths in a hypothetical war with Russia.

President Barack Obama is a fucking failure, the failure of all failures, as are his cohorts including Hillary Clinton. President Barack Obama's legacy is not reforming healthcare, assassinating Osama bin Laden, trade deals or ending the occupation of the Republic of Iraq. No, that's not what his legacy will be, regardless of how many Nobel Prizes he nets during and after his presidency. Nope, his legacy will be the eternal expansion of drone warfare. Barack Obama's legacy is drones. Creating a narrative about Russia (and specifically Vlad Putin) is a distraction, a real red herring, to draw attention away from President Obama's truly (and epically) sinister legacy. It also draws attention away from the fact that 51% of our country is in poverty, and the global situation is even more grim.

The West has gone absolutely batshit over the impulses of change, blaming everything on Russia. It is an understatement to say that Russia (and Vlad Putin, specifically) are the scapegoat of the West. If I slip on a banana peel, I can blame it on Putin and the political elites, the Powers That Be, will reinforce my accusation and applaud me for saying it.

Russia has been blamed for Hillary Clinton's loss of the US election, Russia is blamed for the Brexit vote, Russia is blamed for the German election. The German authorities are saying that the reason Angela Merkel had a less than stellar performance in the recent federal elections is because of Russia. Do you have a toothache? If you do, it's Russia. Vlad Putin, we are told, has control over the "free elections" of the world.

This is hysteria, it's mental illness on a global scale. When rulers and their ruling parties or factions suffer any loss, in the polls or in popularity, it's Vlad Putin's fault, so we are told. They are hammering this universal "it's Russia's fault" meme as the new State sponsored ideology. Anyone who even doubts it in the least aspect is considered treasonous.

I shouldn't have to tell you, Russia did not hack the US election for Donald Trump. Russia did not hack the UK election for Brexit. Russia did not hack German voting machines so that Angela Merkel's total percentage would be less than projected.

The truth is much less like a Cold War dream fever dream. Yet our society controllers are trying to create the "justification" for a New Cold War and the latest Red Scare. All this nonsense about Russians rigging the election, from the very people who scoffed at and heavily criticized Herr Trump for suggesting an election could be rigged, something the Democrats said was "impossible", including El Presidente Barack Obama. The anti-Russian craze is truly terrifying to me.

Remember what President Barack Obama said around the time that Jill Stein began working feverishly to throw the election for Hillary Clinton (someone she pretended to despise)? He said there was no evidence of election tampering and that he had confidence in the integrity of the election results.

A few weeks later, because he's a lying son of a bitch, he completely contradicts himself and reinforces the idea of Russian interference and hacking in the election.

Obama is a LIAR!

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 10:20 am

Another piece of news (to me, at any rate): Obama just allowed the continuation of economic sanctions against Iran recently passed overwhelmingly in both houses of congress to become law. Ending the sanctions was supposed to be our part of the treaty with Iran for their promise never to develop nuclear weapons. This obviously reneges on that agreement and proves to Iran that America's word is worth shit. Yes, the congress had plenty of votes to over ride any veto that Obama may have placed upon the bill, but the craven snake should have at least gone through the motions to show Iran that HIS personal word was sincere, even if his country was duplicitous. Instead he walked away from partners in a deal that took years to craft because of some mindless spiteful pressure from congress at the very end of his term. The man will fight with no one except Putin and Russia (who are easy targets in Russophobic America) because he has no principles and no courage. The sooner he slinks off into the shadows the better. Get out of the people's house, you rat. This makes me as angry as the revenge he has just vowed against Russia for purportedly "hacking the election," in spite of zero evidence.

Josh Laudermilk , December 16, 2016 at 1:01 pm

@Realist,

Thanks for letting me know about this. It doesn't surprise me at all. The situation is taking a turn for the worst. Have you seen the news of President Barack Obama promising to take "action" against Russia? It hurts me that the United States is so unbelievably hostile and belligerent. We should be allies with Russia, it's a great country and a great people. If I were POTUS, I would actively be courting the Russian people (not just their administration or President), reaching out and appealing to them. I would even love to have Russia join NATO. I see Russia as a friend and I'm speaking as an American citizen. I cannot understand why so many Americans are obsessed with casting Russia as the eternal villain. I can only surmise that it is a core tenant of 'neoconservatism' that an enemy must always exist to explain away the costly and ever growing military-industrial complex.

https://www.rt.com/usa/370507-obama-russia-hack-action/

@everyone,

This is surreal.
Report: Hillary Clinton Says Putin Grudge Caused Russia Hack
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/2199450-report-hillary-clinton-says-putin-grudge-caused-russia-hack/

There was no Russian hack. Hillary Clinton will blame everyone but herself for losing Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. She is so corrupt. President Barack Obama is so corrupt. They claim Vladimir Putin and his cabinet are corrupt, they claim that Russia is a "mafia state" and Putin is "the Godfather" of this "mafia state". Those saying this, at the highest levels, are the most corrupt in all the world. I think the Democratic Party is one of the most corrupt parties in the world today, perhaps even in all of history.

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 4:27 pm

Yes, Josh, as I reported from Antiwar.com last night, Obama is planning a strike, a cyberattack, literally an act of war against Russia based on unfounded allegations.

"U.S. intelligence officials believe that Putin *may* (emphasis mine) have directly ordered the hack, according to NBC. On Thursday, NBC reported that government sources said that the Obama administration decided against responding to Russia before the election for fear of a cyber-war. The White House also did not want to appear to be intervening in the election and believed Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton would win."

This is just so much BS. He kills people as part of his routine and he didn't want to "appear to be intervening in the election" because he though Hillary would win. In other words, he didn't think something that *may* not have happened at all was worth starting a world war over. Since Hillary lost (without proof that it was due to ANY hackers, let alone "Putin's" hackers) now it's suddenly okay to threaten an act of war.

I hope that Russia does not underestimate the treachery of this street punk and have their finger on their own button to retaliate against yet more naked American aggression. This is a straightforward threat of major violence, the least that Russia should be doing is taking the case to the United Nations. If Obama does this, you can kiss the amenities of civilisation goodbye, including electricity and the internet if he does something insanely rash like crashing Russia's power grid, which will be avenged, maybe via an EMP over the entire East Coast.

eric , December 19, 2016 at 4:53 am

Russia want to kick our terrorist out of Kosovo twenty years ago now Russia kicked our terrorists out Aelopo . You can't blame our president for being mad he wanted our head choppers to win . They didn't and we can't do anything about it .

Dan Kuhn , December 16, 2016 at 11:10 am

Thanks for that. It needed saying.

Bill Bodden , December 16, 2016 at 1:36 pm

Russia did not hack German voting machines so that Angela Merkel's total percentage would be less than projected.

But the US National Security Agency tapped into her personal phone, one of countless similar incidents completely ignored by the talking heads and print hacks demonizing Putin and Russia.

Paul Fretheim , December 16, 2016 at 9:52 am

I wanted to add a few more things about bring in Russia last year. The young man who was my guide in Moscow was openly gay and lives with his partner in an apartment they share in one of the famous Stalinscraper buildings in central Moscow. He found the idea that there was oppression of gays completely inaccurate. He said their may be discrimination in remote rural areas, but certainly not in the cities. We talked openly about this in a cafe not far from the Russian History Museum on Red Square, which is the gailly illuminated building in one of the photos you shared.

I was in St. Petersburg for one week. My hotel was just two blocks from Palace Square on Nevsky Prospect. I did not see a single homeless person the entire time I was there. I saw police only a time or two, and I walked around a lot. The police walk in pairs. They do not have guns, but each just has one small walkie talkie on their belt, in strict contrast to American cops who look like they just walked out of a Star Wars movie.

I did see one older woman on Nevsky selling mittens she had knitted from a cardboard box.

Joe Tedesky , December 16, 2016 at 11:03 am

Hillary could lose a lot of support if the truth about Russian gays ever came out here is a link to a report that gives statistics and talks about the gay situation in Russia.

http://static.prisonplanet.com/p/images/february2014/white_paper.pdf

eric , December 19, 2016 at 4:36 am

Russia does not sell marriage liciense to gay couples So the U.S says that oppression . I think we voted marriage was between one man and one women but that was oppression
here and made illegal Even California voted the same way Russia has it Really no human rights in Russia . Sounds pretty bad no human rights just terrrible

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 9:46 am

Obama has totally lost his mind. I just read this on the Antiwar.com site. Speaking on NPR, he blamed Putin personally and totally for "hacking the American election" and vows a "retaliatory strike," which the article claimed may be a complete knock-out of Russia's electrical grid.

Excerpt from story: "Irrespective of the lack of evidence and despite nebulous motives, however, President Obama did vow that the US would carry out some form of retaliatory move against Russia, saying he would do so 'at a time and place of our own choosing.' "

This hateful maniac is threatening to start World War 3, while at the same time trying to prevent the president-elect from taking office using baseless allegations of hacking to fuel a coup. What mechanism does the constitution provide for stopping a madman? The coup to slip Hillary into office is bad enough, but this threat of an attack on a sovereign nuclear power without extensive justification beyond his personal animus towards Putin, including irrefutable public documentation of all charges, is simply beyond all reason, it is naked barbarism. This man needs to be medicated and put in restraints while crazy Joe Biden serves out the last month of his term, and if Biden persists in the madness, we move on to Paul Ryan.

Here's the link: http://news.antiwar.com/2016/12/15/obama-vows-revenge-against-russia-for-election-hacks/

Jerry Falkenstein , December 16, 2016 at 1:01 pm

Remember when Obama and the whore went off by themselves for a day or two? Did you wonder what they were plotting? Now you know!

Bill Bodden , December 16, 2016 at 1:30 pm

I caught something a little while ago when I was half-listening to CNN. Apparently, Putin or some Russian official told Obama to put up some evidence or shut up. A little dose of straight talk in a program otherwise devoted to speculation and insinuation.

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 8:46 pm

Here's one report of the very real, rather annoyed response.

http://russia-insider.com/en/kremlin-lashes-out-white-house-put-or-shut-hack-evidence/ri18231

Apparently, many high level officials in the Russian government are speaking out publicly on the matter, including Putin's Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Russian Foreign Ministery spokesperson Maria Zakharova, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. All call it an outrageous accusation and put up or shut up with regard to the non-existent evidence.

It's amazing what Obama thinks he can slip past world observers. The American people? They're used to being lied to and never seem to catch on, which is what Obama and Clinton hope results in an overturned election–regardless of the motives they profess (just wanting to know the truth, yeah sure!). Based on comments dropped all over the internet, it looks like Obama's lies are gaining wide currency (except here), even on comic strip forums. Just gratuitous Russian bashing all over the place. How dare they steal our election!!! Never the more pertinent, "just how did they expect that longshot to succeed?" Or, "I'll believe it when I see the evidence, not just a proclamation."

RedApple , December 16, 2016 at 7:27 am

I am of a Eastern European background who has grown up in the west. I saw the country I was born in destroyed by the US and my nephews nearly killed b bombs outside the areas CNN reported. I have lived with the lies the west spinned about the Balkans for 20 years. It broke my father and he never really go over it. In all the years that followed I never hated and thought my daughter not to hate. Now I see the same being to done to Russia. The people of eastern europe have not forgotten and this time its is really far worse. The hatred that has been festering in eastern Europe against the EU and the US is dangerous. Has the US become so blind. This could easily become very dangerous and I hope articles such as this one will help the people of America understand why this Russia bashing has to stop..

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 10:38 am

Yes, it was Hillary's husband who bombed your homeland as he took NATO out for a test spin after converting what was meant to be solely a defensive alliance against the Soviet Union (which no longer existed) into a useful new tool of American military aggression all over the globe. Maybe he thought that Serbo-Croatian sounded or was spelled a lot like Russian. Dubya totally confused Afghanistan and Iraq with the extinct Soviet Union, and Obomber (with Hillary riding shotgun) must have thought that Libya, Syria and Yemen were surely populated by Soviets. I think the great peace-maker (Nobel Prize and all that) droned Pakistan and Somalia without the help of NATO but, you know, if the godfather asks a favor, those countries had better do what they are told. It's how we role: I think the Cosa Nostra is our model.

Bill Bodden , December 16, 2016 at 1:24 pm

During that time NATO came close to triggering a war with Russia. Russian forces moved into an area to protect some Slavs. US General Wesley Clark ordered British General Sir Michael Jackson to oppose the Russians. Jackson refused saying he was not about to start a war with Russia.

Bankrupt Greek , December 16, 2016 at 7:00 am

The Clinton family is by far the most hated US politician family in the Balkan Region. (with the Bush one coming close second)

Clintons completely destabilized the South East Mediterranean creating a whole vacuum of Islamic extremism, failed states and botched bilateral relations. Bill Clinton completely destroyed the Greek Foreign policy by putting pro-Israel governments in the Greek leadership and evaporating 40 years of excellent relations with the Arab Countries which were receiving a lot of our exports in exchange for oil deals and shipping benefits (Egypt letting Greek ships pass through Suez without customs).

I sincerely hope something changes cause atm US has completely lost the trust of the world imho .

Josh Stern , December 16, 2016 at 6:46 am

"If Murray's story is true, it raises several alternative scenarios: that the U.S. intelligence community's claims about a Russian hack are false; that Russians hacked the Democrats' emails for their own intelligence gathering without giving the material to WikiLeaks; or that Murray was deceived about the identity of the original leaker."

A 4th possible scenario is that it benefits Putin to play the Iron Sheik character alongside the CIA's Hulk Hogan In other words, promoting conflict and raising the statist security profile benefits Putin in Russia for the same reasons you notice that it benefits the CIA & Pentagon in the US, so they play along together .."Oh that is great fun game we having with phony American wrestlers". I mean, why exactly are the US & Russia both supporting the incendiary destruction of Syria? In 2010+ it is no longer strategic to begin with & there will be nothing left of it by the time they both get through. But lots of arms makers/contractors/etc. moved product,. and political foes were sidelined. In the Ukraine, the CIA staged a coup in 2013-14 and Putin got a little piece too. Iran got money and nuclear fuel, and Putin got some biz there too. It looks like a thriving partnership.

Michael Morrissey , December 16, 2016 at 6:00 am

Question for all of you lawyers and (ex?) insiders: Is not what the CIA has done here not only reprehensible (etc.) but illegal? I hope the first swamp Trump drains is Langley, and all its tributaries like the NYT and WaPo.

Akech , December 16, 2016 at 5:18 am

How come these super intelligent findings on Russians hacking DNC and John Podesta e-mails were not applicable to Hillary's private server ?

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 3:44 am

I never fail to be amazed by the treachery of Hillary Clinton. Being a merciful person, a few days ago I was relieved when Donald Trump admitted that his threats to prosecute Hillary for numerous crimes were just so much campaign rhetoric. Nobody likes to see an infirm old lady locked up for the rest of her life. But the way her supporters from both parties have been going after Trump's hide by making very serious but baseless allegations against Putin and then conflating them with Trump is truly vicious and the epitome of attempted self-aggrandizement at the expense of the country's well-being. Assuming Trump is allowed to take the oath of office in the aftermath of these broad spectrum attacks through elected politicians, federal appointees and the media, I would suggest he change his plans for Hillary, Bill and whomever else (John McCain, John Brennen and Michael Morrel, for starters) has been involved in this attempted coup. Seriously, they are attacking the next head of state, if not to remove him then to emasculate him as a leader. Isn't it the old saying that if you attack the king you must kill him or forfeit your own life? Hillary is apparently going for broke. She deserves the gallows.

Joe Tedesky , December 16, 2016 at 10:57 am

If ever there was a way to measure bad Hillary just flew past Richard Nixon at supersonic speed.

Winston , December 16, 2016 at 1:00 am

Murray more reliable and a real truth teller. He's not a careerist. He has ethics.

Tells it like it is:

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2004/jul/15/foreignpolicy.uk

The envoy who said too much
One minute he was Our Man in Tashkent, the next he was a major embarrassment for the Foreign Office. Craig Murray, ambassador to Uzbekistan, talks to Nick Paton Walsh about his turbulent year

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-445896/How-I-know-Blair-faked-Iran-map.html

How I know Blair faked Iran map
By CRAIG MURRAY, Former Ambassador to Uzbekistan and Head of the Foreign Office's Maritime Section

Winston , December 16, 2016 at 12:59 am

Murray more reliable and a real truth teller,. He's not a careerist, he has ethics.

Tells like it is:

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2004/jul/15/foreignpolicy.uk

The envoy who said too much
One minute he was Our Man in Tashkent, the next he was a major embarrassment for the Foreign Office. Craig Murray, ambassador to Uzbekistan, talks to Nick Paton Walsh about his turbulent year

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-445896/How-I-know-Blair-faked-Iran-map.html

How I know Blair faked Iran map
By CRAIG MURRAY, Former Ambassador to Uzbekistan and Head of the Foreign Office's Maritime Section

falcemartello , December 16, 2016 at 12:50 am

Mr Perry don't fall for the establishment diatribe. "putin autocratic style and all its faults" . Follow up ur statements with verifiable facts . Or else u r just part of the modern journalistic problem of western fake news. Still i concur with the majority of ur article. The Russian federation is run just like the west. It is a federated state and is a capitalist economy. Has a federal bank has democratically elected officials at the DUMA . Putin resuscitated Russia, and has brought some needed law and order . Post USSR russia resembled the US during the mob years of the 20 and 30's. Now their is a citizenry who take pride and responsibility of their civic duty, crime has been reduced and graft and corruption being hit on from all levels of russian society.

Realist , December 15, 2016 at 11:53 pm

Exceptionally well written exposé of the madness permeating most of the factions wielding clout in this country by a professional journalist par excellence. An equally perceptive addendum from businessman Gary Hare. If more people were aware of the described realities, perhaps we'd stop digging our own graves, or at least slow down to question our actions.

Paul Fretheim , December 15, 2016 at 11:49 pm

Robert I visited Moscow and St. Petersburg about one year ago. You should visit St. Petersbug. While Moscow is nice and drastically changed from when I was there 30 years ago, St. Petersburg, where Putin spent years as deputy mayor, is even nicer. My guide and chauffer could not understand why the US wanted to try and hurt them with sanctions. They agreed that they liked and respected President Putin and that they could never be influenced by the "silly" sanctions that "might raise the price if tomatoes ten kopecks."

Kalen , December 15, 2016 at 11:21 pm

Rare but needed voice of sanity in this world of McCarthyite hysteria. Will electors hear this voice and understand that by "flipping" their votes they a liable for participating in a form coup d'etat i.e. letting rough government security agency, CIA and their secret unsupported by facts accusations to change the outcome of the however undemocratic and flawed electoral system we have, a system that gave us Trump inadvertently or not, with huge contribution from Hillary's unquenched hubris and disregard for American economic reality.

Mahatma , December 15, 2016 at 10:20 pm

Placing nuclear weapons on the border of Russia is not "the new cold war" get over it and stop with this misleading, at best, phrase. This is not 1955. The circumstances are different now, this is about US demand for Global Full Spectrum Domination – Project 2020. There is nothing cold about it except the cold calculations of nuclear war. The Pentagon talks of low yield half ton nuclear weapons being "usable".

If the hawks gain control, war with Russia and China are inevitable in the coming decade. The Imperial US will not stop I doubt Trump can stop them.

David F , December 16, 2016 at 11:21 am

"If the hawks gain control, war with Russia and China are inevitable in the coming decade. The Imperial US will not stop I doubt Trump can stop them."

I believe that there are certainly people who want this, and who also believe that it could be won. a

I also believe that there are enough rational (I use that term loosely) senior members of the military who realize that it could not be won, and therefore, likely it wont happen.

maricia , December 15, 2016 at 10:04 pm

Look up Eva Bartlett [Canadian journalist] -- she spoke[12/9/16]. at the UN Press conference concerning Syria-Sovereignty and Peace.There also were 3 other speakers there -- all were very interesting to listen to. TRUTH WAS SPOKEN about Allepo. The corporate news media, bombards you with nothing but lies on a daily basis, just like they did about WMDs

Taras77 , December 15, 2016 at 11:24 pm

Ms Bartlett is one savvy and brave lady!

b.grand , December 16, 2016 at 4:24 am

Mainstream Media lies about Syria exposed by Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ueyWGyddepw
EVA BARTLETT, INDEPENDENT CANADIAN JOURNALIST
Press Conference at the United Nations
Dec. 9th 2016

Arby , December 16, 2016 at 9:01 am

See the outstanding Off Guardian website for an article about BuzzFeed's attempted smear job of her.

lizzie , December 16, 2016 at 1:55 pm

Also this woman in the linked video below -- incredibly brave, actual witness to the fall of takfiri and mercenary forces' occupation of E. Aleppo. SAA and Russian helpers are humanitarian heroes -- but listen to the MSM line spewing from the guy from The Hill -- and the UNdiplomat, Samantha Power, should be drawn and quartered for her totally irrational spewing of hate and lies at the UN the other day.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/46050.htm

One reason the MSM has come to literally hate Trump is his determination to talk around them using Tweets and other "social media" mongering. He knows that becoming President might render him a captive of enemies and is, no doubt, taking steps to prevent that. Interesting that he is not moving his wife and young son into the White House.

Looks like the 6 majors no longer control all the messaging anymore, and many of their "talking heads" really do take it personally -- you can tell it in their voices as they spew out their daily "talking points." Nora O'Donnell (CBS) was literally spewing lies and hate (from both her mouth and her eyes) for Dr. Assad this very morning!

Stephen , December 15, 2016 at 10:02 pm

I believe this is going to end badly. The corrupt establishment are terrified that Donald Trump will "drain the swamp" and expose years of malfeasance. That is why the propaganda pushers in the corporate media are in a raging frenzy against Trump. I will be surprised if he is allowed to become President. The war criminals have opened the gates of hell around the world. Nuclear war could be perpetrated by the present lunatics running the corrupt system. Read more at link below:
http://graysinfo.blogspot.ca/2016/12/the-war-criminals-that-opened-gates-of.html

Taras77 , December 15, 2016 at 9:53 pm

Remarkable comments for a remarkable article-thanks, Mr Parry.

To state the obvious, a coup clearly is underway, led by Brennan at CIA. However, some are finding some optimism, such as Larry Johnson at:
http://www.noquarterusa.net/blog/79469/john-brennans-failed-soft-coup/ .

Johnson is former CIA and rails at Brennan for taking down the reputation if that were possible.

On the plus side, we have the lack of support from Clapper. We have the failure to show up to brief congressional committee on the "hack." We have the Intelligence Professionals (of which Johnson is one) completely shredding any assertion that the information was hacked. We have Craig Murray stating that he knows who did the leak, and Wikileaks denying any input from the Russians. I am waiting for more info to come out from disaffected CIA or former CIA. The FBI and Comey are deadfast set against any evidence of a hack.

But on the other hand, we have the brain dead MSM and neo con handlers ready to continue to do the bidding of the elite, deep state, establishment or whatever. And we have the profile in courage sitting in the white house equally ready to the bidding of the elite and the bidding of the neo cons.

I see the justified concern in the comments above. To cap this rambling comment, I do not know nor does anyone else how this will come out but at a minimum, trump will have a difficult 4 years. To me, it absolutely criminal the mis-characterization of Russia and even more criminal, not allowing anyone to take that first major step in restoring a working relationship with Russia.

If trump is able to accomplish just one thing, for me it would be a major plus: stop the neo cons and stand up to their continuing attempts at infestation of major govt positions, think tanks, political sychophants,

Bob Van Noy , December 16, 2016 at 1:27 pm

Excellent link Taras77. Thanks

Evangelista , December 15, 2016 at 9:42 pm

Sometimes things backfire; sometimes badly, sometimes hilariously

It is reported that some 40 electoral electors have signed on to demand official (hoped to be reliable) information about the allegations of "Russian", "Russian!", 'Russian', Russian, and now "Vladimir Putin's Personal!" "hacking" of, no longer computers, but "The U.S. Election!". The number might be still rising.

Of the known ones, who signed on a letter, most are Democratic electors.

Outraged Neo-Cons and an at least "fellow-traveler" Harvard Attorney have been pushing a "Hamiltonian Interpretation", claiming that this interpretations makes it 'OK' for electors to violate the contract of their agreements with their states and state-party's to vote for the candidate winning the presidential race in their state [Presidents, as the electoral college system indicates, are elected by the states of the United States (or the majority of the states' electors) to be 'President of the United States', rather than 'President of the People of the United States'].

I find myself, from these given facts and analysis of them and the situation, perceiving that there seem to be more Democratic Electors listening to, and hearing, the Siren voices of the "Hamiltonian Interpretation Loreleis, and suspecting that there may be more Democratic electors giving consideration to switching their votes than Republican electors.

Imagine a "landslide" for Trump in the Electoral College. Imagine the potential effects:

Imagine the already hyperventilating going into overdrive Imagine the Hilaryatti, already prostrate and in counseling, having to deal with No, I am getting into the impossible, beyond the unlikely

Pablo Diablo , December 15, 2016 at 9:36 pm

The Electoral College should nominate Bernie Sanders for President. He leads in all the polls and would be the best thing for The United States of America.

Jessejean , December 15, 2016 at 11:52 pm

O Pablo–that is totally Diablo! And I completely agree. Go Bern.

John , December 15, 2016 at 8:54 pm

The drama triangle is the oldest play in the book .Google "drama triangle" .The question is who are the money players .who would benefit from a world wide socialist system I know we have the jewish scumbag George Soros betting against anything that makes him more wealthy. I will travel 1000 miles to piss on his grave His time is up very soon !! The question remains unanswered who would have benefited monetarily under the hag Hillary .Follow that money line to the mother load or continue to use fake news (another Zionist tactic) toward OZ .Do you people have a strategy for your own salvation ??? I'm thinking no

Clyates , December 15, 2016 at 8:12 pm

Parry, Are you the only real journalist left in this country? Thank you for always telling the truth. I'm donating immediately.

Em , December 15, 2016 at 7:54 pm

I think many are missing the real underpinning of the Fake News propaganda assault and the Russia hysteria. The rhetoric is all coming from the Clinton media support system otherwise known as the MSM. The rhetoric coming from the Trump transition is anything but cold war. I think what the progressive media are failing to recognise or perhaps just don't want to talk about, is that the MIC is in the middle of it's own civil war. I think it's fairly certain, reading between the lines in the articles a few weeks ago, that General Rogers at best deliberately ignored the DNC hack, and almost certainly had a direct hand in Comey's decision to drop the metaphorical grenade on the Clinton campaign in the final week, which many, including myself believe really cost her the election in the end. Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I think, as Steve Pieczenik stated (and who knows what side that guy is on if you read his bio) there really was a counter coup. My guess is that apart from Rogers, Kelly, Flynn, Mattis and maybe McChrystal were the larger part of it.

What's really interesting is that all of these guys (apart from McChrystal) made their way up the ranks from the bottom; their daddies weren't admirals or senators; they all saw front line action and have continued to join their troops at the front. I've listened to their interviews, NOT the Fox News soundbites, but extended interviews on YouTube and none of them are bloodthirsty hotheads. Mattis is particularly impressive in terms of his breadth of knowledge with a number of talks to right wing think tanks online. I would highly recommend Flynn's long interviews on Al Jazeera and RT. I think it's interesting Flynn is under fire today for undermining the CIA especially having listened to his interviews, which are surprisingly candid. Flynn expressly warned against those in Washington who advocate continuous war. He also showed contempt for drone warfare, like many in the military, probably because the CIA are calling the shots, literally, whilst the military leaders have to take the fall for their mess ups, just like in the military prisons. These generals have all made statements against torture, and talk (at least) impressively about women's rights and the scourge of trafficking, including human trafficking; and while they use typically measured language, it seems apparent they are under no illusions as to Administration's collusion in what most people would categorize Organized Crime.

When you actually listen to them, it is clear these old-school generals want an "end game", specifically the end for them is the fall of theocracy, a goal which Putin would undoubtedly share. Russia only supports Iran for geostrategic, not ideological reasons, especially since everyone is aware Iran is still playing the same old despicable duplicitous games with the CIA that started under Reagan. I think they're counting on if Iran falls, all the Sunni theocracies who essentially hold the rest of the Islamic world will fall into line and secularize. So if the generals remain in power I think that's where they're going. Their other aim is to split Russia from China, which probably won't be difficult because China wont share their technology with anyone, and they are leaping way ahead of the rest of the world with alternative energy, and Russia has never trusted China historically, and vice versa. Russia has a lot more in common with the US than anyone cares to admit openly. Russia for these guys makes far more sense as a first line frenemy than Europe or China, Europe being far too social democratic, and China being too autocratic. These generals aren't infected with the generations old Slavophobia that seethes out of Westminster and their American aristocousins.

This policy shift would drive CIA/MI6 "business interests" (their raison d'etre) into the ground, especially since Rogers seems to be breaking up the NSA and who knows what that means for the lucrative privatized end of the cyberwar community. Jobs for Russian hackers? You laugh but Dulles was happy to bring in the Nazis after the war. That, in my opinion is what's behind the current media meltdown. It's obvious that the CIA/MI6 are blatantly weaponizing the MSM and using Russia to attack the Trump transition at a level never seen before because the CIA heads are seriously under threat for the first time since the 60s. Rumours abound that Trump is going to be deemed unfit for office before the inauguration, in which case, bunker down. Don't get me wrong however: I don't think Trump's generals are nice guys, and I'm not advocating for them. Although they have all expressed a desire to move to alternative energy, they want to ramp up domestic fossil fuels in the "short-term" as a way to bury the power of the Saudis, and undoubtedly they will start a war with Iran, two reasons to be scared as hell, because that means either conscription or "tactical" "mini" nukes. The alternative is CIA continuous proxy wars and "Global Initiative" organized crime/trafficking, weapons of mass migration, and no difference over climate change, except the utter insanity of Brennan's geoengineering strategy (see his C-SPAN CFR speech) which makes the new CIA chief look reasonable by comparison. That's how fucked-up things are – Pompeo is the preferable choice.

"We the people" therefore continue to be between a rock and a hard place, i.e. we're screwed either way. But those regular folk seeking to topple Trump should be careful what they wish for, and people need to wake up to what's going on. If the CIA is intent on another coup before January, there really would be a massive crackdown in this country. No commission could cover it up, so it would mean the end of free speech and the Internet as we know it. The last nail in the coffin.

Realist , December 16, 2016 at 12:14 am

Hmmm. Hope you're wrong about most of that stuff in your last two paragraphs. The rest hangs together like it might be plausible.

When do they count those damned electoral votes that are cast four days from now? That might be the last day of our republic as we have known it for 228 years. If there's a coup, there will be blood.

lizzie , December 16, 2016 at 1:06 pm

Here is the schedule as published in the Federal Register:

https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/key-dates.html

David F , December 16, 2016 at 11:13 am

It seems to me that Russia and China have finally understood that they are either going to stand together against America or fall separately.

Your premise implies that 1) Americans can be trusted, which is demonstrably false, and 2) the Russians are stupid enough to believe #1 is true.

No way Russia abandons its allies to make friends with us. For to do so would be suicidal.

eric , December 19, 2016 at 3:36 am

your wrong Russia and China are together We shot a missile into the Chinese Embassy and killed a few Chinese in Yugoslavia Bill Clinton apologized and said this was a accident . However when George Tenet testified before congress that we picked out the Chinese Embassy for a target China knew Bill Clinton had lied to them
Yeltsin had promised Milosevic that Russian troops will come in with NATO forces and protect the Orthodox Christians in Kosovo . So Milosevic agreed to end the war and bring his troops home . But when Russian troops landed U.S. general Wesley Clark issued orders to shoot the Russian soldiers The British troops refused the order but the Russians were unable to protect the Christians This failure in
Yugoslavia brought down the whole Yeltsin government in Russia and Solzhenitsyn install Putin to lead Russia . This is the kind of mistakes a stupid super makes Both Russia and China were unable to save the only non NATO European country that they felt treated them on a friendly bases With the enemies Russia and China learned they have they decided they better stick a lot closer together . Since this time Russia has tried to strengthen China any way they can . And I don't know but I think China will reciprocate and act the same way towards their friend Russia . China told us only a few years ago they have not forgotten or forgiven what happened to them in Yugoslavia .You are right Russia should be a natural friend with the United States the two most Christian countries in the world .But these are the kind of mistakes it is impossible to forgive and forget . I don't think it is possible for the United States or any NATO country to get between Russia and China . They both know what happened to Yugoslavia . And they don't intend for that to happen to them ..

AriusArmenian , December 15, 2016 at 7:47 pm

Amazing.
We have the choice of a 50/50 chance of bigger war with Trump, or a near 100% bigger war with Hillary and US elites want the latter.
They are using the CIA to attempt a coup to overthrow a US national election.
The US looks like the biggest banana republic in history.
With the MSM carrying water for the elites I feel like the future in the US is hopeless.
While the US will keep killing more millions.
My last hope is that the Eurasian powers will stop the US cold.

Jerry Falkenstein , December 16, 2016 at 12:20 pm

"They are using the CIA to attempt a coup to overthrow a US national election."
"The US looks like the biggest banana republic in history."
"With the MSM carrying water for the elites I feel like the future in the US is hopeless."

Really like these three sentences.

Arby , December 15, 2016 at 7:19 pm

The Democratic Party (and those who are connected to the establishment) may desperately need to do an autopsy on their election loss but the people are desperate to rid themselves of these two wings (Republican and Democratic) of the same vile bird of prey (Upton Sinclair).

Brendan , December 15, 2016 at 6:44 pm

Achtung, all Aryan women! Beware of Russian-backed Arab rape-gangs!

Gustav Gressel from the George Soros-funded European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) warns of the possibility that Russia might encourage refugees to carry out sex attacks in Germany in order to influence the federal election there next year.

"What would happen, for example, if a similar event to [the mass sex attacks on New Year's Eve] in Cologne were repeated at a summer festival before the election? How would Merkel stand then? What would be the consequence for the Bundestag election? Of course, this is an extreme example, but it is within the range of possibility," he said.
http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/12/13/think-tank-warns-russia-sex-mobs-germans/

Gressel refers to the attacks in Cologne on New Year's Eve last year as an example of what the Russians might organise. However, it turns out that there was a lot of misreporting of those attacks. https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2016/11/05/hamb-n05.html

Brendan , December 15, 2016 at 6:46 pm

Originally reported in the Bild, Germany's biggest tabloid newspaper.
(in German) http://www.bild.de/politik/inland/wladimir-putin/propaganda-putin2sexmobs-49205588.bild.html

Also in the Daily Mail and the Sun in the UK.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4032432/Pro-EU-think-tank-says-Russia-Syria-orchestrating-migrant-sex-attacks-swing-upcoming-German-elections.html
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/2400317/russia-may-organise-migrant-sex-attacks-in-europe-to-make-angela-merkel-lose-german-elections-eu-experts-claim/

Jean Ranc , December 15, 2016 at 6:32 pm

AWESOME! Robert. Write on!

Zachary Smith , December 15, 2016 at 6:26 pm

Making Russia 'The Enemy'

It's not just Russia they're tackling.

US admiral pledges to confront China in South China Sea

Admiral Harry Harris, commander of US Pacific Command, used a speech in Sydney yesterday to warn that the United States was ready to confront China over its activities in the South China Sea. Under the Obama administration, the South China Sea has been transformed into a volatile flashpoint for war between China and the US. Harris's remarks make clear that those dangers will only rise under a Trump administration.

Harris has been one of the most strident advocates of aggressively challenging China in the South China Sea. In March last year, he claimed that China's land reclamation activities in the Spratly Islands were "creating a great wall of sand" for military purposes. His comments were the opening shot of an escalating US campaign to demand Beijing cease those activities and to justify the US military build-up in the region.

This Admiral Harris has been making the news lately. At a speech at Pearl Harbor he took the opportunity to dump on Colin Kaepernick, and the Pentagon gleefully touted this until somebody remembered that the US Navy had a dreadful race record during WW2. When I checked into this hyper-heroic Admiral, I learned he was one of the commanders at Guantánamo. When three of his victims "died suddenly and violently" this gold-dripping jackass declared that the dead people had engaged in "an act of asymmetrical warfare waged against us".

There is no telling what Trump is going to do, but if he encourages this crap, all his election promises about not getting into needless wars will be for nothing.

Daniel Foley , December 16, 2016 at 9:36 am

Your posts are always good and reflect good thinking skills. It never hurts to look at both sides of a situation. A lot of the posters on this site haven't examined what this country is in for with a Trump presidency. Hope SS isn't their only means of retirement. I hope they all have a good health plan. We have to cut taxes for a lot of the war mongers. What was it that Pogo said? "We have met the enemy and he is us.

F. G. Sanford , December 15, 2016 at 6:24 pm

Could the election hysteria get any weirder, or the "deep state" any more desperate? Probably. But, what would it take? How about a fake alien invasion? If pale cadaverish white men with crew-cuts, black suits and homberg hats start showing up in your neighborhood wearing horn-rim Ray-Bans, don't automatically assume they're really the "Men in Black". They might correspond to Carl Schmitt's "different and alien", but take my advice. Look for dandruff. It's a dead giveaway for fake aliens.

Great article, Mr. Parry!

Joe Tedesky , December 16, 2016 at 2:17 am

"pale cadaverish white men with crew-cuts, black suits and homberg hats start showing up in your neighborhood wearing horn-rim Ray-Bans, don't automatically assume they're really the "Men in Black"

I'll tell right now if these guys show up at my house I'm inviting them in, setting up my drums, (I hope they brought a sax and keyboard) and we are jamming .if everything goes down the way I hope, me and my Men in Black will have a soon to be released hit album for sale on iTunes.

Abe , December 16, 2016 at 12:42 pm

I'm expecting Putin to show up at my house with zombie Hitler riding a T-Rex.

John Kerry did visit Antarctica during the presidential election.

Das ist das Ende.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wmilvm3KIgw

art , December 15, 2016 at 6:19 pm

If we count all the illegal aliens that voted for hillary then yes, she did win the popular vote. The " recount " has exposed massive fraud that benefited hillary in Michigan and other places . The e-mails were leaked not hacked. RIP Seth Rich. All one has to do is look at Trump rallys vs hillary rallys. There is no way hillary won the popular vote.
By calling the Electoral College archaic is simply wrong. It avoids mob rule by giving equal voice to all the country not just LA, DC,Chicago, San Fran, Seattle , NYC and Miami and south Texas.

Ol' Hippy , December 15, 2016 at 6:01 pm

As I've said before Russia is not really an enemy of the US unless provoked into hostilities be inept government officials. The one main thing about Trump is his softer stance of Russia and Putin. Hopefully this will hold up as I'm sick and tired of hostilities created by the neocon establishment and all their warmongering actions. It's kind of like the anti-war movement during the 'Nam; give peace a chance. I just hope Trump can stand up to all the hawks in Washington, we'll see. However the anti-Russian propaganda may be tough to over come and end up escalating into a cold or even a hot war which we'll lose because Putin is well ready for an attack. I wish for peace which has always been my stance. I just hope reason and sanity rules out over provoked hostilities. But the odds are probably against this dream of mine and others for sure.

Bill Bodden , December 15, 2016 at 5:54 pm

For some reason this mendacity-laced Russia bashing brings to mind the yellow journalism promoting the war against Spain after the sinking of the USS Maine.

The chaos that is currently evolving should come as no surprise when we consider the sizable number of people who considered that the two candidates representing the Democratic and Republican parties for president were equally atrocious if for different reasons. That is one of the consequences of voting the perceived lesser evil from two corrupt parties. The evils became progressively more so with each quadrennial charade. The American people are responsible in part for this ominous predicament which may mean an enlightened resolution to this conflict is highly unlikely.

Daniel Foley , December 15, 2016 at 5:43 pm

Just wondering why doesn't Craig Murray release the name of the "Dem" leaker. Wouldn't that settle the Russian hacking story and stop the guessing. All other leakers usually reveal their name.

backwardsevolution , December 16, 2016 at 12:49 am

Daniel – I believe Craig Murray said that he was given the documents by an intermediary, on behalf of someone else. One leaker was probably Seth Rich, the murdered DNC staffer. Julian Assange offered a $20,000.00 reward for information re Seth Rich's death. Why would Assange do this if Seth Rich hadn't had something to do with the leaks?

"Re supposed Russian hacking, Karl Denninger (who does know his Internet technology), has a post entitled "So It WAS NOT Hacking". Karl quotes the Daily Mail in U.K. and Craig Murray's involvement:

"Craig Murray, former British ambassador to Uzbekistan and associate of Julian Assange, told the Dailymail.com he flew to Washington, D.C. for emails.
He claims he had a clandestine hand-off in a wooded area near American University with one of the email sources.
The leakers' motivation was 'disgust at the corruption of the Clinton Foundation and the 'tilting of the primary election playing field against Bernie Sanders.
Murray says: 'The source had legal access to the information. The documents came from inside leaks, not hacks'."

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4034038/Ex-British-ambassador-WikiLeaks-operative-claims-Russia-did-NOT-provide-Clinton-emails-handed-D-C-park-intermediary-disgusted-Democratic-insiders.html

And then Karl says:

"The source gave it to him.

There was no hacking. There was instead a disguntled Democrat operative who had access to the data, dumped it, and turned it over.

This is a guy who (1) claims to have met the actual source, (2) received the actual data and (3) got the data because the person who took it was*****ed off that the Democrats stole the nomination from Sanders.

The "Russian" claim just went up in smoke."

Then Karl (who is not a fellow who is into conspiracy theories at all) says:

"PPS: Was his name "Seth Rich"? Because if so then every single person supporting the "hack" narrative, repeating it or cheering it on is in fact cheering on murder and it is my sincere wish to each of you, collectively and individually, that you burn eternally in Hell for your open and outrageous support of both corruption and murder."

https://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=231717

Daniel Foley , December 16, 2016 at 9:18 am

If it was Seth Rich why isn't Assange giving the $20,000 to Craig Murray? I am sure you remember Vince Foster. Who was the person that had him Killed? Oh by the way Craig Murray was relieved of his British post. Not quite sure why.

Bill Bodden , December 16, 2016 at 1:13 pm

Oh by the way Craig Murray was relieved of his British post. Not quite sure why.

Briefly, he was outspoken in criticizing torture in Uzbekistan. Do an internet search for "ambassador craig murray uzbekistan" for more information.

backwardsevolution , December 16, 2016 at 1:20 pm

Daniel Foley – I believe the $20,000.00 reward was for information on who was responsible for Seth Rich's murder, you know, hopefully to catch the killer. Craig Murray is a pretty credible person. Google him.

exiled off mainstreet , December 16, 2016 at 12:43 pm

Knowing the nature of the yankee legal and political system, it would be death or imprisonment for the leaker. That is why the intermediary was necessary, and, knowing these facts, that is why the democrats are cynically blaming Russia and revealing their true nature as having evolved into gangster-fascism since the DLC-Clinton hostile takeover of 1990 or so.

Marblex , December 16, 2016 at 2:45 pm

Assange has since stated that only he and a select few (not including Murray) https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/809366908470525952

It is possible the Murray stuff is disinfo intended to discredit Wikileaks which as you may know, has a perfect record of accuracy. I would stick only with what Assange says, for now.

Assange has maintained since the emails went public, that they were leaked to WL and not the result of "Russian" or anyone else's hacking. https://twitter.com/foxandfriends/status/809722357430398976 . He also hinted very strongly in a Dutch TV interview that Seth Rich was the source. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kp7FkLBRpKg

vollin , December 15, 2016 at 5:37 pm

With Israel Russia relations now quite good, have to wonder why Israel first US neo cons hate Putin and Russia so much.

Brad Owen , December 16, 2016 at 1:11 pm

The Israel First US neocons hate Putin and Russia so much because they are just puppets in an Imperial Play. The string-holders are much higher up in the pyramidal hierarchy of World Dominion. The entire Zion Project is the creation of Cecil Rhodes' RoundTable Group in the late 19th century. It, along with SME (Synarchist Movement for Empire) intends to secure World Empire for "Eurogarchs", ancient Imperial families (some with old Roman roots, many with Holy Roman Empire roots) and their Managerial Elite in the banks and corporations (this is the essence of fascism; simply the modern version of old ancient Empire, which, like war, is also a racket, with imperialists being highly-polished racketeers). The RoundTable Group had as its' primary goal the re-capture of its' "Rogue Colony" USA through its' Wall Street asset (mission accomplished), gradually defeating all tendencies towards a Constitutional Republic (lethal ideas for racketeering Empires). The primary relationship to be blocked at all costs is friendship with Russia ("the big one that got away"). India got to share colonial status with the same Imperial Masters as do we (City-of-London). China had opium wars foisted upon them by the same Imperial Masters (C-of-L), AND haven't yet wised up to the booby trap that is Hong Kong (C-of-L's eastern asset like Wall Street is its' western asset. Ahh but there lies Russia, always befriending and defending revolutionary/republican USA since the days of Catherine the Great (ever wonder WHY Russia sold us Alaska?). The day that Russia and USA become firm friends and allies is the day that Empire dies and THAT is why Israel First (C-of-L), US (C-of-L-via-Wall Street asset) neocons hate Putin and Russia so much they simply must, to keep Empire alive.
P.S. Israel-Russia relations are so good BECAUSE they know which way the "geopolitical winds" are blowing.

eric , December 19, 2016 at 1:58 am

Well that day is going to officially take place in about thirty days or so you should be very happy ps unless some thing big happens in the next thirty days or so

Gary Hare , December 15, 2016 at 5:18 pm

I have had seventeen years working at local executive level for two large US Corporations – IBM and Raytheon. I was CEO of a small start-up living in the US for two years. So I have had plenty of opportunity to observe the US psyche close up.

It has been my experience that too many US citizens exist under this "perception management" syndrome that the USA is exceptional, is always right and good, and is the only model for how a society should function. I have always been able to work with people who are ignorant. You merely have to educate them properly. I can work with people who are arrogant. You only have to put into their minds concepts that they mistakenly think they originated. But I have always found it impossible to work with people who are both ignorant, and arrogant.

The "perception management" tool you highlight produces business and political elites who are both alarmingly ignorant (of other viewpoints) and extremely arrogant (I am a US citizen – ergo, I must be right). How else could it be possible for a voter to be given the choice between two such flawed characters to lead their country, and sadly to exercise so much influence over the rest of the world? And does this not reveal the gross shortcomings of the field they beat to contend for this top job? And the party apparatus that put them forward?

Trump is clearly arrogant. I can only hope he is also not ignorant. The flaws in US policies are so easy to see, that he does not need "insider briefings" to appreciate them. But who among the elites are sufficiently impervious to "perception management" to be able to implement sensible policies, even if Trump is able to articulate them?

It seems to me that the US is on the verge of dying from the virus of believing its own propaganda.

Like you, I recently spent nearly two weeks in Russia, but only in Moscow and St. Petersburg. So admittedly, my experience is skewed. I was surprised by the number of young people who spoke English, and who admired Putin for the simple reason that Putin can explain to them the rationale for his policies, and can demonstrate success in most of them. He typifies leadership. The US tendency to want to vilify Putin is counter-productive, slanderous, transparently unfounded and obviously childish. Sensible people do not take it seriously. But who in the US political elite is sensible?

Stephen Sivonda , December 15, 2016 at 11:46 pm

Gary Hare . well spoken and a real joy to read. When I look at a web site that has comments, after reading what the article is about I usually start to read comments . There are such a variety of comments for almost any subject, but more often then not the comments devolve into worthless drivel Once that happens I leave although if I read say 20 comments that would be a lot. There is much to be learned by reading intelligent comments , and the followers of Consortium News make it a place to learn.

Enels , December 16, 2016 at 3:56 am

Seldom in history/herstory, could there be a place so self deluded. (whatever that means ) But no, it isn't funny, The BS about the Russians hacking to skew the election promoted by the loosers/Democrats, (I was one once), is awful.

Americans are in a strange place now. If Trump goes hard against SS, and medicare, and unions, oh boy!

eric , December 19, 2016 at 1:50 am

I don't expect Trump to go against social security and medicare although I have heard a lot of republicans claim they have too because the money will be gone .. I sure don't like to hear this coming from republicans Reagan a great republican increased the social security contribution so he could cut the top income tax rate . there by shifting the burden from the wealthy people to the poorer people This made him a great republican . I think Trump realizes he was elected by the working people and will work for us . But he a republican and that scares me a little . I'am expecting medi care for everybody and this time the republicans will vote for it I just hope the democrats vote for it too . . This is the program Hillary wanted for many years . I don't think Trump is a typical republican . I can not think of anything that controls costs better than medicare for everyone . The healthcare industry will fight medicare for every one but bogus billing has no place in healthcare .. When I say medicare for everyone I mean everyone I mean congress and all government employees every one .

Bob Van Noy , December 15, 2016 at 5:18 pm

It's truly maddening having ones perception managed. Thank you Robert Parry for helping us resist such management with the only weapons we have and that is our experience and ability to decipher what we read. These are frustrating times because powerful special interest forces are at war with each other and it becomes nearly impossible to discern fact from fiction. Fortunately we have your reputation for reporting factually to guide us through this unbelievably dishonest period of our democratic experience.

There is a good exchange between Professor Stephen Cohen and Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch on Democracy Now at the following link. I would encourage those not familiar with these observers to look up their history and judge their statements for yourselves

http://www.truthdig.com/avbooth/item/stephen_cohen_the_new_york_times_is_enabling_a_new_20161215

Randy Torres , December 15, 2016 at 5:07 pm

I spent 3 weeks in Russia and was amazed by what I saw. Sanctions are a joke. Russians have just simply replaced Western goods with their own, which in many cases are of better quality. The only shortages I noticed were of American crap. Two things stood out about Moscow and St. Petersburg vs. New York City where I live: 1) everything was so clean and spotless, hardly any graffiti; and 2) how clean and efficient (and cheap) their subway system was relative to NYC. Some of their stations look like museums, spotless and no rats. Also, trains that run on time and no delays due to "sick passengers" or "train traffic ahead" and free wifi everywhere including trains and not just on select stations. Russia isn't perfect of course, but it is far far far from being the dungeon depicted in the US media. On the contrary Moscow and St. Petersburg are in many ways better places to live than New York.

Geoffrey de Galles , December 16, 2016 at 5:48 am

Hear, hear -- I, for one, know exactly what you mean. My wife and I are western Europeans (Germany / UK) who, beginning in the early 1970s, ended up spending half our lives in the very heart of Manhattan. That was great, as far as it went. But then in 2002, upon returning home from almost a month spent in Russia with my elderly father (who, as a UK Russophile, had visited the USSR + Russia by then well over a score of times, beginning as a seaman during WWII), I felt compelled to admit to my dear Frau that, had things only been a lot different back in the '60s & 70s (viz., the Cold War!), we'd have done much better for ourselves to have headed east, rather than to have ever gone west. After all, Russia has true culture and -- in its own unique way -- just the kind of fine taste that one encounters in, say, Italy, France, or Spain. Moreover, the common folk are so very much more 'honest-to-goodness' and 'for real' than, typically, one finds in the west. -- – Those who have never visited Russia and are consequently clueless about its current cultural ambience might do well to go check out on YouTube the some two dozen postings of the Moscow girlie-trio, YOUNG ADULTS. A few of their videos indicate their (understandable enough) roots in and devotion to Russian musical traditions; but, for the most part, their repertoire attests to their pro-active reverence for modern western (US + UK) music (featuring their astonishing covers of recent classics from the likes of, e.g., the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pharrell Williams, the Black Eyed Peas, Beyonce, and Amy Whitehouse). Improbably and extraordinarily, almost always the YOUNG ADULTS manage to exhume and tease out the real music buried and entombed in the often raucous and vulgar renditions of the chosen songs' originators (!!!); but, in any case, the tender-loving-musical-care that they invest in everything they do attests to their respect and reverence for western music, and even the very culture that has begotten it. -- – Oh that the United States and Europe would similarly partake of, share in, regenerate and propagate that essential magnanimity of the great Russian people. -- And thanks again Randy for your post.

hyperbola , December 15, 2016 at 5:06 pm

Deconstructing Russophobia
https://off-guardian.org/2016/06/16/deconstructing-russophobia/

Imagine that Vladimir Putin were not a murderous autocrat and kleptocrat who has spent his fourteen years in power living up to his KGB past and dragging Russia ever back towards Communist autocracy, illiberalism, and expansionism. Imagine that instead he were one of the greatest leaders that Russia has had, whose policies have helped produce a massive rise in living standards and life expectancy, recuperation of national pride, and enforcement of the rule of law, who has tackled kleptocrats and gangsters wisely and well, whose foreign policy has on balance been realistic, diplomatic, and conducive to peace, who has presided over a country of which the human rights record is considerably better than that of the United States and in which civil rights are improving, and who richly deserves the steady support of 65% – currently at a Ukraine-related high of 83% – of the population that he possesses. It is my understanding that the reality is closer to the second scenario than the first – and I may note that I say this as someone with no ethnic, financial, professional or political ties to Russia whatsoever. It follows that I am not a Russian expert – but nor am I, on the other hand, parti pris. I am a friendly, distanced observer of the country.

Let me start by explaining the history of my connection to the country. .

Michael Morrissey , December 16, 2016 at 5:52 am

Thank you, hyperbola, for this link. Didn't know about Off-Guardian. Every major newspaper needs a dedicated "Off" site. The NYT used to have "Lies of Our Times" but it folded after a couple of years and was never big enough to keep up with the propaganda pouring out of the Giant Wurlitzer. Times are different now, with the internet. I would love to see at least one Off site for every "news" outlet, and even though it would be impossible to do that for tv and radio, having the "paper record" consistently deconstructed would be a huge step forward.

Jerry Falkenstein , December 16, 2016 at 11:41 am

"Imagine that Vladimir Putin were not a murderous autocrat and kleptocrat who has spent his fourteen years in power living up to his KGB past and dragging Russia ever back towards Communist autocracy, illiberalism, and expansionism."
Who said that? I never thought that. Did the neocons say that? I was thinking lately that probably Stalin wasn't really as bad as I was brought up to believe. In fact I hardly believe anything our government says anymore.

Abe , December 17, 2016 at 6:41 pm

"Deconstructing Russophobia" is a superb account from British academic Catherine Brown. As always, thanks to OffGuardian.

Highly recommended:

Canadian independent journalist Eva Bartlett cuts through the war propaganda on Syria
https://off-guardian.org/2016/12/16/eva-bartlett-on-syria-responding-to-buzzfeed/

eric , December 19, 2016 at 1:13 am

You seem like a smart man but Putin was not the ruler for 6 of those 14 years . Medvedev was and he also was a good leader like you described Putin might be . It was Medvedev that said No when Georgia attack south Ossettia . It was Medvedev that showed the world the bear was back . Ever since we attacked Yugoslavia and fired a missile into the Chinese Embassy accidently on purpose than issued orders for NATO to shoot Russian soldiers because they will try to protect Christians . Ever since these stupid power mistakes Russia and China have had our number . They are together and looking for chance to get even . Humiliate us like we did them , They have been working together for 17 years with this goal in mind . Now they are in Syria with their new weapons doing what they want to and humiliating us . I say good they are finishing the war we started and are doing what we should have done congradulations Russia and Putin and thank you very much

The Artist formerly known as young man , December 15, 2016 at 4:49 pm

Apparently Churchill once said: "History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it". The American version of this quote? – History will be kind to us, for we intend to repeat it.

That pretty much sums up the current drive for starting Cold War 2 by the Americans (They were responsible for starting the first one too, by the way). Their way of thinking is – Cold War 1 took care of the Soviet Union, so hopefully Cold War 2 will take care of Russia. Not so fast amigos.

Americans repeat history not because they didn't learn something from it, but because they draw wrong conclusions from it. Just because they "won" the Cold War 1, it doesn't mean that they should expect to "win" a second one too. The stakes are much different now. It's much easier to give up on ideology than it is to give up on the place where you live.

Or maybe the Americans decided to tweak a little bit another saying: "Insanity is repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result". I actually think that repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting the same results is equally insane. Circumstances change, you know, the world is not an isolated laboratory where you can eliminate external factors. The experiment might fail this time. But don't listen to me, go about your business.

Dwight , December 15, 2016 at 4:48 pm

The Union for Concerned Scientists has joined in this hysteria in a press release about Trump's appointment of Exxon CEO Tillerson as Secretary of State. UCS President Ken Kimmell states: "This position calls for someone able to put national security and the well-being of Americans first and foremost. But Tillerson's close ties to President Putin and Russian oligarchs call into question his ability to deal firmly with Russia, which attempted to disrupt U.S. elections according to U.S. intelligence agencies."

http://www.ucsusa.org/news/press_release/secretary-of-state-pick-cements-governance-by-oil

The main concern Kimmell raises in the press release is climate change, and I can certainly understand an environmental group being concerned about an oil exec as Secretary of State with climate negotiations in his portfolio. However, a new Cold War is the last thing we need if we want reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and détente with Russia could enable cooperation on climate change. Decades of inaction ago, Robert Redford called this "Greenhouse Glasnost" in his book of that name with articles by U.S. and Soviet climate scientists.

UCS also works on risks of nuclear power and nuclear weapons, which are related concerns on which we international cooperation not a new arms race and more proxy wars.

I learned about the UCS press release in an email from a local environment group which repeated the gratuitous attack on Russia in seeking donations. It is sad to see this meme spreading among people that should be thinking deeper about the implications of détente versus cold war.

Rob , December 17, 2016 at 1:30 pm

Human caused warming of the climate is the ultimate danger facing the planet, and it is entirely appropriate for those who recognize this fact to be alarmed that our next Secretary of State will be a person whose entire career has been devoted to extracting fossil fuels from the earth and burning them. Moreover, there is strong evidence that Tillerson and Exxon were well aware of the deleterious effects of greenhouse gases, even as they were minimizing those risks to the public. This is the basis for the "Exxon knew" campaign, which is getting little attention in the press (unsurprisingly.)

Which raises the obvious question: Could Donald Trump not have found someone other than a climate change denying, fossil fuel extracting corporate titan to run the State Department and lower tensions with Russia? Of course he could have, but he didn't, because Trump himself does not accept the reality of global warming. Thus we should not be surprised by his appointment of Tillerson to State or oil industry tool Greg Pruitt to the EPA. Trump's motto might as well be "screw the planet."

eric , December 19, 2016 at 12:38 am

No Trumps motto is screw the liars

BccList , December 15, 2016 at 4:43 pm

This article was so over needed. While the content within won't make it to any MSM report (until, perhaps, months/years down the road), I was sure -- as an adamant progressive with cyber security background -- to post it to every social media outlet I use and send to email chains where it's me vs a bunch of "liberal-hawk" friends.

I can understand/deal with one absurd, hawkish and out of touch/reality party. But, to have both in the same boat, is really, REALLY scary stuff. The stuff that makes a Trump presidency alone seem like a walk in the park.

James lake , December 15, 2016 at 4:38 pm

Interesting article. Clinton, and her echo chamber in the media with all this Russia bashing really are tone deaf.
She misjudged the voter and showed no sense of their concerns.
They were thinking about jobs and health and other concerns, her only policy was more war.

If Trump can stop the neo cons that in itself will be a great achievement for America and the world.

Jessejean , December 15, 2016 at 11:00 pm

But first Rachel Mddow has to destroy her credibility by hysterically pushing the 3rd way, corporate dem, neoliberal Cold War, CIA driven excuses for losing power to a discredited Rethuglican party over the last 16years.

eric , December 19, 2016 at 12:31 am

Trump did stop the establishment of both political parties and that was the neocons too Than he tripped the pope when we learned the Vatican had a wall around it too . Now his only trouble is the FBI and the CIA and they heading for the dust bin of political history unless they can shoot him first .

Patricia Guerrero , December 15, 2016 at 4:13 pm

Thank you for this. Its difficult to sort out sometimes the twists and turns of politics. as a dem/dove who is appalled at what our foreign policies have been, although I don't like trump, I thought an easing of cold war hostilities with Russia was a good thing. Now I know why. I only voted for Clinton because I thought it was the only way to help further Sanders agenda. I cannot forget that she grinned as she stood behind her husband when he signed the bill that killed Glass Steagal or her support for the first Iraqi invasion and continuing hawkishness. I don't despise her like some do but I could never really warm up to her. Sanders is very authentic; when asked about human rights for Palestine he was the only politician that at least said they were entitled; all Clinton could repeat was "precautions must be taken". With HRC she came across as espousing policies to win votes, not that she was passionate or even honest about them.

Stephen Sivonda , December 15, 2016 at 11:00 pm

Patricia Guerrero It's good to read that someone is beginning to develop an awareness of what passes for our Govt. today. It is somewhat complicated as there are many layers of that are only interested in their wallets and how far up the power food chain they can go. I've tried in vain to describe to several friends some of the reasons why certain events happen and use the analogy of a "Big Puzzle" . It's my version of critical thinking. Once one starts to look at past and current events (those being pieces of the puzzle) , then things begin to connect and take shape .as similar to filling in the voids in the puzzle. Your mentioning of HRC standing behind Bill Clinton and grinning jumped out at me .as a person who is on track to seeing what a morass of evil we have for Govt. and the political machinations by the DC insiders. God save the Republic.

exiled off mainstreet , December 16, 2016 at 12:39 pm

Unfortunately Sanders has jumped the shark supporting this effort aimed at demonizing Russia to overturn the election results. It proves he was either weak, a fraud, or both, unfortunately. This will damage the democratic brand long-term, although if Tulsi Gabbard becomes a candidate it may be a way out of the trap.

Zachary Smith , December 15, 2016 at 4:08 pm

The Moon of Alabama site has a new post about the motives of this latest "stuff".

The "Elite" Coup Of 2016

My only quibble with it is that he neglected to mention other people who would prefer President Hillary or President Pence.

Abe , December 15, 2016 at 3:47 pm

German political theorist Carl Schmitt defined the content of politics as opposition to any person or entity that represents a serious threat or conflict to one's own interests. The "other" or the "stranger" is defined as an "enemy"

For Schmitt, the political is not an autonomous domain equivalent to any other domain, such as the economic, but instead is the "existential" basis that would determine any other domain should it reach the point of politics.

Schmitt defined the enemy as whoever is "in a specially intense way, existentially something different and alien, so that in the extreme case conflicts with him are possible."

For Schmitt, such an "existential" enemy need not even be based on nationality: so long as the conflict is potentially intense enough to become a violent one between political entities, the actual substance of enmity may be anything.

Leo Strauss, a follower of political Zionist Vladimir Jabotinsky, had a position at the Academy of Jewish Research in Berlin. Strauss wrote to Schmitt in 1932 and summarized Schmitt's political theology thus: "[B]ecause man is by nature evil, he therefore needs dominion. But dominion can be established, that is, men can be unified only in a unity against – against other men. Every association of men is necessarily a separation from other men – the political thus understood is not the constitutive principle of the state, of order, but a condition of the state"

With a letter of recommendation from Schmitt, Strauss received a fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation to begin work, in France, on a study of Hobbes. Schmitt went on to become an influential figure in the new Nazi government of Adolf Hitler.

In the late 1930s, as Hitler's Reich was expanding in Europe, Schmitt developed his concept of "Grossraum", literally "great-space". The term has a sense of a "sphere" of influence, and "geopolitical space" may be closer to the meaning.

Schmitt intended the Grossraum concept to grasp an area or region that goes beyond a single state (that is, a specific territory), to comprehend much larger scale spatial orderings, complexes or arrangements.

After World War II, Schmitt considered the United States to be the only political entity capable of resolving what he regarded as the crisis of global order.

Indirectly influenced by Schmitt's concept of the political, twenty-first century American Superpower "exceptionalism" has no space in its Grossraum concept for a "Eurasia".

The very enunciation of a "Eurasian" political sphere by Russia and China is regarded by American Superpower as a "terrorist" act. All those associated with such "lunacy" are viewed as geopolitical "enemies" to be annihilated by any means possible.

For more on Schmitt see:

Reading Schmitt geopolitically: Nomos, territory and Grossraum
By Stuart Elden
https://progressivegeographies.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/reading-schmitt-geopolitically.pdf

CitizenOne , December 15, 2016 at 10:13 pm

You said, "In the late 1930s, as Hitler's Reich was expanding in Europe, Schmitt developed his concept of "Grossraum", literally "great-space". The term has a sense of a "sphere" of influence, and "geopolitical space" may be closer to the meaning."
This is the story of America. From the Revolution to Expansionism and then on to Manifest Destiny and our winning position in both World Wars, America has always been about creating geographic space, political space and recently even in Outer Space.

The Star Wars or Space Defense Initiative proposed by Reagan was an attempt to create Space Superiority in Outer Space. They even have a branch of the Air force called Space Command. http://www.afspc.af.mil/ . The Mission statement for Space Command defines Space Superiority as the freedom of the United States to defend itself from attack in Outer Space as well as the freedom to attack any target from Outer Space. The targets might be other orbital craft in Outer Space such as satellites or any land based target. Space Superiority is perhaps the ultimate vision of domination. The freedom from attack in Outer Space and the freedom to attack from Outer Space on any land or space based target will mean an escalation of space based weapons which are banned by international treaties like international treaties on Antarctica which declare Antarctica to be free of politically motivated land grabs by any Nation.

I can only imagine what will happen when they find oil under the ice covered Continent once all the ice melts.

What we need is a rational government that is concerned with this inevitable clash of capitalistic goals and the environment.

I think our military is actually concerned about these inevitable outcomes if we continue to fill the atmosphere with greenhouse gasses. The Navy and the Air force have been actively seeking alternatives to a fossil fueled military but they have been blocked at every turn.

What we really need is a revolutionary fuel source like Fusion to save the day. It might be right around the corner. The military is investing heavily in it. They see the destabilization of the economic and geographic regions of the World due to climactic change as threats to our National Security.

Fission is also realistically possible as an alternative. But political intransigence has stifled progress on that front. Watch "Pandora's Promise" which is a documentary by ex-antinuclear activists. I'll sum it up in an epitaph for humanity which reads "They were most afraid of what could have saved them and they were unafraid of what killed them".

One fact is clear. The future stability of World governments and their populations depends on abundant energy. There is no other single driver of prosperity and stability than affordable abundant energy. It was the driver for the rural electrification program under FDR. Back then they understood this equation and mounted massive public spending to make it happen. The recent rise of southern state populations can be attributed to the development of Air Conditioning which made these regions habitable in the Summer months. Thus was born an economic expansion which drove our former Cotton Belt into a new industrial giant.

Some visionaries have laid plans for a solar based economy which would utilize massive banks of lithium batteries to break the old myth that electricity cannot be stored. Elon Musk is one of those visionaries. Entire cities could be powered at night by batteries.

The global crisis in energy supply is being driven by the same folks who imposed unfair tariffs on goods before the Revolution. They would like none other than to hold us hostage in an oil economy which very well might kill us all.

Modern developments in photo-voltaic cells have resulted in a continuous manufacturing process which utilizes plasma deposition of a multi layered dielectric film onto a substrate such as rolls of steel sheet which results in and amorphous coating capable of rivaling monocrystalline cells. The result is a process which resembles the revolution Gutenberg started with his "printing press". Instead of growing Silicon Crystals and doping them with rare elements, the plasma deposition process uses a continuous sheet of a substrate passed through an interlock chamber into a high vacuum chamber where various materials are deposited as a plasma onto the substrate in a continuous fashion to produce a finished product which can be cut up into tiles for low cost and installed on roofs to generate electricity. The difference in this technology is akin to a scribe hand copying books verses a Xerox machine doing the same thing. It is the same difference between the time Bibles were the property of the Church and to be caught in possession of one was a capital offense and modern times where paperboys deliver newspapers for cents on the dollar.

Whether it is a Fusion or Fission or Solar or even a tidal based form of unlimited energy, one thing is clear. These technologies are real. They exist. To the extent that we drive our planet into a mass extinction by burning fossil fuels or we transition to clean energy which is abundant and practically free will determine whether we end up holed up in a cave with our guns ready to shoot anyone crossing our sights or whether we transition into an economy where energy is essentially free.

The new administration is increasingly looking like it wants to live in the cage. A cage determined by a global economy based on oil and fossil fuels.

If Donald Trump really wants to create jobs he would be well advised to divest himself from fossil fuels and take a turn toward the future as envisioned by leaders like Elon Musk. The Army did not make their move lightly on the Dakota Access pipeline. They have a duty to defend us from security threats. They take that responsibility seriously. We would be wise to listen to them.

I know that all of the corporate people interested in preserving their economic investments in fossil fuels have to take a deep breath and submerge themselves into the unknown waters of a non-oil based business model. But they need to see the vision. They need to know that their future success depends on it. They need to act quickly and pour their profits int the many available means to provide an energy rich future where many things are possible and opportunity abounds.

There are two kinds of people or for that matter two kinds of corporations or governments. There are those that hold onto old business plans and defend them at all costs believing their old business models will save them and there are those who see opportunity where others see only risk. It is those individuals, companies or governments which see the opportunities for continued growth utilizing new technology who will succeed. Those who are paralyzed by old business models and old paradigms will fall to the wayside.

We don't want the USA to be one of the losers. If Donald Trump wants to be the "more jobs" president he will embrace new technology and not appoint members of the old guard as the stewards of America's future.

It is not a matter for debate. The fields of technology will continue to open up potentials for a more stable and economically rich future. These things are real and they are up for grabs. Whoever grabs them first will be the winner. Whoever refuses to grab them will be the loser.

This is an ask. Donald Trump can do it. He is an outsider and not involved in the business of government. Many of his ideas are fresh and hold great promise. Some of his appointment show he might be being blindsided. He should council himself with the members of our National Security Team who want to see a secure future and distance himself from those who want to preserve the old guard.

David F , December 16, 2016 at 11:04 am

This sort of advocacy for some technological fix that allows us to go on living in the same, or greater, fashion than we are now, is part of the problem.

We live in a finite space, with finite resources, time to start acting like it.

Abe , December 16, 2016 at 6:41 pm

CitizenOne, your comment is right on topic if the topic is fake news.

"Pandora's Promise" is a pro-nuclear industry propaganda film. The new pro-nuke missionaries are promoting nuclear material as some kind of savior of the global environment when it is precisely the opposite.

Elon Musk, Richard Branson, and their oligarch chums can blast off to go colonize Mars with Trump, Clinton, and all their wannabe cabinet appointees.

We'll keep our money and finally build a grid that fully integrates clean energy from abundant renewable resources like solar and wind.

Joe Levantine , December 17, 2016 at 3:57 am

@ Citizen One
Your comments are very insightful since you commented on the most important issue that is at the core of international conflict.
However, if history is any guide, your hopes will unfortunately be nothing more than wishful thinking. The case for my pessimism is none other than the great Nicholas Tesla. Tesla, who by Einstein's reckoning is the greatest scientific mind that has ever been was wasted by the powers that be because he was on the verge of discovering free and clean energy. He did emulate thunder in his lab. His quest was to harness the electricity in the ionosphere and channel it for human use through a central tower. His research on plasma was way ahead of his time. His reward was an assassination attempt by the energy cabal who were hell bent on keeping their monopoly power through the fossil fuel business. When Tesla's lab went on fire, it was U.S. Government agents who stormed into his lab and confiscated all of his files, thereby putting a sad end to history's greatest mind. The silence of history books about Tesla speaks volumes about the matrix controllers' animosity to this unique man.
To expect from Donald Trump to be a selfless hero is stretching reality over the limit. His presidency did save the world another round of in the White House for the Clinton ghouls. Yet, his potential for reforms is very much restrained since his ascendancy to power came through the ballot box and not through a real revolution.

Leibniz16 , December 18, 2016 at 1:00 am

The Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) was conceived by Lyndon LaRouche and his associates was conceived as a strategic flank to prevent those in both the American and Soviet spheres, of launching a "First Strike" thermonuclear attack which was the increasing danger at the time, to which with Obama is a threat as great as ever. Furthermore it was a strategy of helping both the U.S and Soviets out of the economic collapse, which is still occurring, through what would be a cooperative "Science Driver" approach, that would be working on areas of plasma physics and other areas of concerns relevant to a entire revolution of energy production.

It was LaRouche and associates that published a magazine called Fusion, working on advanced nuclear technologies to help
revolutionize mankind's potential, and break out from the control of the financial oligarchy.

Presently we at the verge of a complete energy revolution through the discoveries of Randy Mills and his Brilliant Light Power Company that has a verified demonstration of a novel understanding of the hydrogen atom, whereby the electron orbit is dropped to a lower spin state, releasing vast amounts of energy.

Brad Owen , December 18, 2016 at 10:46 am

Well said, citizen one. It all really does boil down to abundant energy, and energy flux density, as Lyndon Larouche says. We wil advance onward through denser energy flux production. It's what people DO, as naturally as lions hunt and birds fly; technological advancements is what people do, from chipped flint stone tools to fusion-powered space flight to Mars in a weeks time, and beyond that stage too. In this NEXT round of technological advancement, China, India, and Russia will be leading the way, as it is THEY who are now the World leaders. I'm confident we'll break free of the Imperial Straitjacket that has been affixed upon us by other powers in opposition to our Constitution and republican principles (i.e. Patriots, NOT the Tory-Loyalists-to-Empire-and-"Crowns", that still infest our nation, doing the bidding of ancient Imperial family lines, seeking to "capture" us and make us their simple-minded beasts-of-burden).

CitizenOne , December 18, 2016 at 11:42 pm

In reply to to Abe. France is not Fake News. They generate 80% of their electricity from Nuclear Fission. Modern reactor designs are safe. There is a word for it, failsafe. Westinghouse invented the spring to close air to open brake and we were all not afraid of runaway trains anymore. Technological advances and really any technological problem is usually a very simple solution like the air brake but now in modern times simple solutions to problems are drowned by politics. That is the thing that makes technology fail fail. The technological solutions are usually sound but where we need them we need to put off the politics live with the occasional unintended consequences and let the inventors course correct rather than condemning failure and halting all progress. Where would we be if, after the first Mercury Rocket blew up, we threw water on space adventure calling it a doomed technology? Luckily that did not happen.

In response to David F:

I suppose then we should all be living in a cave painting the walls with mystical creatures since technological solutions are doomed to failure. Are you living in a cave? I don't think so. Perhaps you are or should be since you eschew any form of technology, live in a finite fixed environment and are prepared to be a victim of circumstance. That is some kind of crazy world view.

In response to Brad Owen:

I completely agree. Abundant energy is the key to our future growth. Indeed it is what people DO. I also agree that that it is unfortunately what other nations are doing way ahead of us. If we do not get on the bandwagon and decide that the future is all about abundant energy then we will become the losers in the technology front. As I laid it out, the technological means to transform our world into whatever we want it to be are already here. They have been developed and even more are being developed which have the potential to power a bright future like the invention of electric power grids which power industry, economies and enable commerce.

It is time for science and technology to be applied to the problems we face developing new means of energy production that are all around us from solar to battery technology to fusion, biofuels, nuclear fission using safe technology, wind, tidal and even really challenging technologies but if we are not investing in it, then it means we are not investing in any new energy sources.

The history of past inventions was not made by those that said the technology was a fools errand. The inventions were made by visionaries who had the stamina to endure all of those folks who poo pooed the new technology and eventually prevailed.

It is really not a matter of if but when we will enter a new age of abundant energy. Energy drives everything and it also is the most important factor for peace. Abundant energy establishes the wealth of nations more than money. Without it, money is worthless since it cannot be used to purchase the motive driver for creation of goods and services.

The history of the Industrial revolution was driven by energy. Abundant energy.

The Sun fuses ten million tons of hydrogen every second and it will last for ten billion years. How is that for a clue that life on Earth depends on abundant energy. If we were able to fuse even just one ton of hydrogen every second in the production of electricity we would power the entire planet. If we could just convert one percent of the solar energy impinging on our tiny dot of a planet circling around the huge nuclear furnace of the Sun we would power the entire global electricity requirements for a long time to come.

These are the visions we need to be occupied by. Not visions of impending doom or hopelessness.

What we need now is an energy race. An energy race to create a new economy which is driven by safe energy. Photosynthetic cells which are like photovoltaic cells consume atmospheric Carbon Dioxide using solar energy to produce Carbon Monoxide and Oxygen. The CO can be used as a feed stock to produce hydrocarbons which can be synthesized into synthetic fuels which create a carbon cycle which is entirely atmospheric. If we want to reduce atmospheric CO2 we can just pump the fuels back into the ground or use them to produce durable products like cement which can be used for construction.

I know that this might seem like a pipe dream and perhaps it is. It will not be a pipe dream when we feel the full effects of global warming. Then there will be a market for these products.

The politics will reverse as people seek products that enable them to survive. It is what people do. It is what life does. It seeks to preserve itself. Technology will offer appealing alternatives which are even more economical than current energy platforms. It will make economic sense to adopt them.

It made economical sense to adopt our current energy platform and the new energy platforms will make just as much economic sense.

We are already seeing this transition from Coal to Natural Gas driven by the technology of fracking which is cleaner than coal and is now more economically advantageous. Coal is not dying because of government regulations. It is dying because there are cheaper alternatives. Win Win for the environment and the consumers of energy and the producers of it.

But the fracking revolution is just the first wave in new technologies to harvest ever more abundant and cleaner safer forms of energy.

This is not wishful thinking. It has happened with fracking and it will continue to happen with other forms of energy over and over.

Those that see the potential opportunities will become the future energy barons.

I would ask only that we would see the movements by other nations as a shot across the bow that we better get to work. We don't want to be left behind in the energy bonanza just around the corner.

It is a gold mine out there for the companies that develop the next generation of massive abundant energy sources. They will gain great wealth. They will be viewed like Edison or Fermi. Prometheus unchained.

Do not listen to the hysterical mob. Instead listen to the visionaries who will all get very wealthy with new technological inventions.

It is the way it has always been and so it will be in the future. We never go back. We never force a halt to the current way we do things. We just invent better ways of doing it that make more economic sense and make the old ways obsolete.

Perhaps some might advocate we all return to the caves where we hid from the cold of winter in our elk skin coats huddling over a campfire and drawing pictures of the food we wanted to eat but did not have as we sucked the marrow out of dry bones but I think that is not a future I want to see.

I would rather offer to sell the cavemen guns and ammunition and snowmobiles and portable propane heaters with sofas and furniture for their caves instead. And you know what? They would be lined up around the cave entrance to buy them.

Think about it.

Abe , December 21, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Citizen One, your news about nuclear power in France is fake.

Power generation is down and wholesale power prices are rising due to numerous safety and integrity issues that plague Électricité de France SA's (EDF's) nuclear reactor fleet. Carbon segregation in critical nuclear plant components like the steel pressure vessel can weaken the vessel's structure and breach safety regulations, potentially leading to catastrophic events.

http://www.powermag.com/frances-nuclear-storm-many-power-plants-down-due-to-quality-concerns/

eric , December 19, 2016 at 12:12 am

Nobody is stopping free energy development I 'am from Missouri Free energy will come from free enterprise not government subsidies .. We will have new development and new and better ideas but show me don't tell me . Scams are scams wether the come from crooks or the government and they often are the same thing .

Ragnar Ragnarsson , December 15, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Thank you for being the voice of reason and truth teller that you are Mr. Parry. I sincerely hope the domestic coup in progress fails miserably and that Trump is able to pursue peace. I am so sick of Neo-cons and what they've done to the world.

Howard Mettee , December 15, 2016 at 5:59 pm

Thank you Mr. Parry for shining the spotlight on the vitally important topics that you do to keep us informed in depth. As one who tries to see the world through the lens of parity between nation states, I wonder what you (or other qualified folks) could tell us about the efforts we Americans have made and are currently making to influence influence, and very likely undermine, the stability of Russia and President Putin. My guess is we are not without serious complicity in doing the same things as we now accuse the Russians of doing to us, but of course much of this would be classified. I suspect the more holier than thou we are, the more committed we are to destabilizing the so-called "enemy" of Russia (despite our measured provocations to precipitate their alleged aggression(s). Thank you again, have a great holiday season.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 1:00 pm

Speaking of our "holier-than-thou" attitude, let me relate a personal story that relieved me of this attitude a long time ago. Re cently , I have been vindicated as regards any doubts that I might have had about that change of attitude.

During the relatively early years of the Cold War (1956-59), you know, just before the Chinese split with the Soviets in 1960, the Berlin Wall went up in 1961, and Gary Powers was shot down, igniting the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, it was my job as a Naval Pilot to fly up and down the Far Eastern coastline (12-mile limit) of the Soviet Union (you know, Kamchatka Peninsula) looking for trouble. Didn't find much, except the frequent Mig-17 flying my wingtips, who might have been wondering what we were doing there BUZZING THEIR SHIPS. No problem, they didn't shoot me down, for which I am grateful. But I did wonder what WE would have done if THEY had been flying so closely up and down OUR California coast.The American public never heard about these "intrusions" in the Russian "space". Nor did the Russians publicize them for the obvious reason (embarrassment?).

Come 2016 and OUR ships are cruising around in the Baltic not far from the suburbs of St. Petersburg, when Russian jets come looking for trouble(?) buzzing OUR ships.. And there erupted a hypocritical hue and cry from the DOD, etal. to match the usual black pot and black kettle stories that we hear so often from our powers that be. Not only are we doing the same to them (buzzing their ships once, or we would have heard about them the other times) that we have been doing to them for 70 year, though not on our California or New York coastline, but in their back yard. This is hypocrisy on steroids. This is deeply embarrassing to me.personally. Are we that desperate? Who really are these people who are stirring the pot so vigorously?

EyesWideOpen , December 16, 2016 at 4:50 pm

"Who really are these people who are stirring the pot so vigorously?"
I assume yours is a rhetorical question.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 5:14 pm

For: EyesWideOpen

The pot I am referring to is the context in which everything bad is blamed on Russia. In this case, we can buzz, they can't. If they do it, it's publicized. If we do it, it's not.

Yes, I guess that it was a rhetorical question with the implication that the answer should be obvious. All you have to do is read the papers, and it should be obvious who wants to litigate (gossip) this issue to death.

Minnesota Mary , December 18, 2016 at 4:31 pm

Thank you for your testimony! America's government is so hypocritical. Our news media is so dishonest in what it filters and chooses to tell the American people. Lies abound, and it is nearly impossible for most people to sort through them.

Robert Keith , December 16, 2016 at 4:55 pm

Correction to my reply: "Not only have WE been doing the same to THEM for almost 70 years right off THEIR coastline, NOT OURS, but WE have complained when THEY did this ONCE to us IN THEIR BACKYARD."

eric , December 18, 2016 at 10:50 pm

I guess we funded many ngos to destabilize Russia . So many that Russia has forced many U.S.aid groups to move out of Russia by the end of this year . We funded the Pussy riot girls that did things in the Churches in Russia that would have brought the girls to the insane asylum if they did these deeds in Churches in the USA In Russia the girls got prison sentences So our journalists could write stories about how oppressive Russia .is to people loving freedom . Russia does not allow gay marriage another terrible oppression and black mark on freedom in Russia .. Russia has built more Christian churches than any other country in Europe under Putin's kGB leadership . Putin is not Satan . The Russian people are proud with him as their leader it is only us that wants to get rid of him .

Adele Roof , December 15, 2016 at 6:11 pm

Thank you for this thoughtful, well-informed post. You are right -- many Democrats, and I was one, did not vote for Clinton because she was a war monger. I also felt, that as a woman, she would have to go out of her way to prove that she was as tough as any male.

She obviously learned nothing from her disastrous vote for the war in Iraq, because she influenced Obama to take out Qaddafi. If it were not for her lust for war, I probably would have held my nose and voted for her. And while I did not vote for Trump, I actually breathed a sigh of relief when he won, thinking that he wouldn't take us into war with Russia.

To date, there's no proof that the Russians were involved in hacking/leaking this information. But if this is causing such a stir as to have some want to overturn the results of the presidential election, then, by rights, to be morally consistent, they should also push for going back to the Democratic primaries and redoing them as well. Clearly this hacked/leaked information shows that the Democrats interfered with the election of Sanders. That would be most fair, don't you think?

exiled off mainstreet , December 16, 2016 at 12:36 pm

Parry's article is again excellent. The lamestream democrats are jumping the fascist shark and putting our future at risk. I also am a lifelong democrat who couldn't support the harpy because of her obvious hawkishness and status as a war criminal based on her architecture of the Libya destruction. I also think her need to prove herself as tough as any man colors her dangerous political views. I also agree that the fact it was proven that she is a proven war criminal and they gamed the primaries against Sanders should eliminate any support for overturning the election on any basis absent the fact that any success in this endeavour would lead to civil unrest and that what they are demanding, confrontation with Russia, is a threat to our future. Hopefully former peace types still taken in by the klinton koolaid will wake up and restore the Democratic party away from its present incarnation as a fascist militarist threat to our survival.

Jon Olsen , December 18, 2016 at 3:37 pm

Good idea Adele, New election, given all the crap Jill Stein found in the very limited recount effort she was allowed to conduct. The election process is putrid rotten! Let er and Gary Johnson into the debates this time around as well.

eric , December 18, 2016 at 11:05 pm

yes but I'am hoping you made a wise choice . Trump may not be a old fashion vote no on every thing republican I'am expecting good reasonable priced healthcare covering everybody and not costing employers so much they won't hire any one . That alone might bring back a lot of jobs . I voted with you and now I think we have a better future . Of course we could be friends with Russia . Russia is not communist anymore . They are the most Christian country in Europe and we are the most Christian country in the world . We should be natural friends

Jerry Falkenstein , December 16, 2016 at 11:11 am

2 comments
Dmitry Orlov cluborlov.blogspot.com

Dmitri Orlov cluborlov.blogspot.com

With all the compost being forwarded in cyber space it's refreshing to occasionally read something that's spot on the money. An article that actually contains real value or what one might call nourishment for the brain. Every so often I'll read a post that's near perfection and I just did. It's by Dmitry Orlov and titled "The Power of "Nyet". My expressed thanks go out for Dmitrys permission to repost this exceptional piece of commentary.

The Power of "Nyet" Author Dmitry Orlov, Club Orlov Blogpost
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Kerry Putin lavrov The way things are supposed to work on this planet is like this: in the United States, the power structures (public and private) decide what they want the rest of the world to do. They communicate their wishes through official and unofficial channels, expecting automatic cooperation. If cooperation is not immediately forthcoming, they apply political, financial and economic pressure. If that still doesn't produce the intended effect, they attempt regime change through a color revolution or a military coup, or organize and finance an insurgency leading to terrorist attacks and civil war in the recalcitrant nation. If that still doesn't work, they bomb the country back to the stone age. This is the way it worked in the 1990s and the 2000s, but as of late a new dynamic has emerged.

In the beginning it was centered on Russia, but the phenomenon has since spread around the world and is about to engulf the United States itself. It works like this: the United States decides what it wants Russia to do and communicates its wishes, expecting automatic cooperation. Russia says "Nyet." The United States then runs through all of the above steps up to but not including the bombing campaign, from which it is deterred by Russia's nuclear deterrent. The answer remains "Nyet." One could perhaps imagine that some smart person within the US power structure would pipe up and say: "Based on the evidence before us, dictating our terms to Russia doesn't work; let's try negotiating with Russia in good faith as equals." And then everybody else would slap their heads and say, "Wow! That's brilliant! Why didn't we think of that?" But instead that person would be fired that very same day because, you see, American global hegemony is nonnegotiable. And so what happens instead is that the Americans act baffled, regroup and try again, making for quite an amusing spectacle.

eric , December 18, 2016 at 11:44 pm

You have got the whole story down right .accept China is standing along side of Russia . They have been ever since we humiliated both of them in Yugoslavia . Now both of them have developed a lot of new weapons and Russia is in Syria with their new planes and missiles 300 and 400 . Putin has told us we can talk about changes that we could maybe make . But the NWO has already decided everything they don't want to consider any changes . Not for us , Not for Christians , not for Jews , not for Muslims , not for Russians and not for any Chinamen either . They have already made all the orders and rules . Russia said Nyet in Georgia and now Russia is saying Nyet in Syria too . The Russian people are totally behind their government and proud of Putin .The American people have finally caught on they are not proud of what the NWO has been doing they have discarded their NWO government And have selected a new government that is going take power in thirty days . Trump has said he will deal with Russia and China on a equal basis .We are facing a very dangerous thirty days the NWO may do anything during this period to stay in power and implement all the orders they already decided .

JoAnn Witt , December 16, 2016 at 3:57 pm

"Ditto" to that and Mr. Parry, thank you for the pictures!

Fran Macadam , December 17, 2016 at 5:58 am

Robert Parry, a voice of sanity amidst the McCarthyist hysteria. How ironic this time around the most extreme purveyors of the paranoid style in politics are once-liberal Democrats.

Andy , December 19, 2016 at 1:28 am

Great article. I'm glad I found this site since it has become clear that I can't trust the MSM. Even 60 Minutes has become a tool of Washington.

Andy , December 19, 2016 at 1:40 am

In Obama's news/press conference on Friday, he said some very unprofessional things about Russia: "they don't produce anything besides oil and gas " and "they aren't innovative". (By not innovative does he mean they don't make fake stories like how the Russians hacked the DNC?) This isn't the kind of thing our President should be saying about foreign countries, especially large ones like Russia. Where does he got off saying this at a news conference? I'm losing respect for Obama by the day. I voted for him and after suffering 8 years of Bush he was the savior at the time. But his shine has tarnished.

[Sep 02, 2018] Bill Browder (of Magnitsky fame) broke all these rules while pillaging Russia.

Highly recommended!
Browder was able to breqak those rule only becuase he was supported by MI6, CIA or both. Pillaging of Russia was the plan.
Notable quotes:
"... @Alligator Ed ..."
Sep 02, 2018 | caucus99percent.com

CB on Sun, 09/02/2018 - 11:12pm

Putin demanded several more caveats

@Alligator Ed
in addition to staying out of politics:

1) You pay your taxes
2) You pay your employees
3) There will be no asset stripping

Bill Browder (of Magnitsky fame) broke all these rules while pillaging Russia. From 1995–2006 his company, Hermitage Capital Management, siphoned untold billions of dollars out of Russia into offshore accounts while paying no taxes and cheating workers of wages and pensions.

Putin put an end to US and UK backed shysters stealing Russia blind. Is it any wonder the western oligarchs hate him with such a passion?

[Aug 30, 2018] Back in the (Great) Game- The Revenge of Eurasian Land Powers by Pepe Escobar

Notable quotes:
"... Russia's Geo-economic Strategy for a Greater Eurasia ..."
Aug 30, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Back in the (Great) Game: The Revenge of Eurasian Land Powers August 29, 2018 • 34 Comments

What is left roaming our wilderness of mirrors depends on the mood swings of the Goddess of the Market. No wonder an effect of Eurasia integration will be a death blow to Bretton Woods and "democratic" neoliberalism, says Pepe Escobar.

Get ready for a major geopolitical chessboard rumble: from now on, every butterfly fluttering its wings and setting off a tornado directly connects to the battle between Eurasia integration and Western sanctions as foreign policy.

It is the paradigm shift of China's New Silk Roads versus America's Our Way or the Highway. We used to be under the illusion that history had ended. How did it come to this?

Hop in for some essential time travel. For centuries the Ancient Silk Road, run by mobile nomads, established the competitiveness standard for land-based trade connectivity; a web of trade routes linking Eurasia to the – dominant – Chinese market.

In the early 15 th century, based on the tributary system, China had already established a Maritime Silk Road along the Indian Ocean all the way to the east coast of Africa, led by the legendary Admiral Zheng He. Yet it didn't take much for imperial Beijing to conclude that China was self-sufficient enough – and that emphasis should be placed on land-based operations.

Deprived of a trade connection via a land corridor between Europe and China, Europeans went all-out for their own maritime silk roads. We are all familiar with the spectacular result: half a millennium of Western dominance.

Until quite recently the latest chapters of this Brave New World were conceptualized by the Mahan, Mackinder and Spykman trio.

The Heartland of the World

Mackinder

Halford Mackinder 's 1904 Heartland Theory – a product of the imperial Russia-Britain New Great Game – codified the supreme Anglo, and then Anglo-American, fear of a new emerging land power able to reconnect Eurasia to the detriment of maritime powers.

Nicholas Spykman 's 1942 Rimland Theory advocated that mobile maritime powers, such as the UK and the U.S., should aim for strategic offshore balancing. The key was to control the maritime edges of Eurasia -- that is, Western Europe, the Middle East and East Asia -- against any possible Eurasia unifier. When you don't need to maintain a large Eurasia land-based army, you exercise control by dominating trade routes along the Eurasian periphery.

Even before Mackinder and Spykman, U.S. Navy Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan had come up in the 1890s with his Influence of Sea Power Upon History – whereby the "island" U.S. should establish itself as a seaworthy giant, modeled on the British empire, to maintain a balance of power in Europe and Asia.

It was all about containing the maritime edges of Eurasia.

In fact, we lived in a mix of Heartland and Rimland. In 1952, then Secretary of State John Foster Dulles adopted the concept of an "island chain" (then expanded to three chains) alongside Japan, Australia and the Philippines to encircle and contain both China and the USSR in the Pacific. (Note the Trump administration's attempt at revival via the Quad– U.S., Japan, Australia and India).

George Kennan, the architect of containing the USSR, was drunk on Spykman, while, in a parallel track, as late as 1988, President Ronald Reagan's speechwriters were still drunk on Mackinder. Referring to U.S. competitors as having a shot at dominating the Eurasian landmass, Reagan gave away the plot: "We fought two world wars to prevent this from occurring," he said.

Eurasia integration and connectivity is taking on many forms. The China-driven New Silk Roads, also known as Belt and Road Initiative (BRI); the Russia-driven Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU); the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB); the International North-South Transportation Corridor (INSTC), and myriad other mechanisms, are now leading us to a whole new game.

How delightful that the very concept of Eurasian "connectivity" actually comes from a 2007 World Bank report about competitiveness in global supply chains.

Also delightful is how the late Zbigniew "Grand Chessboard" Brzezinski was "inspired" by Mackinder after the fall of the USSR – advocating the partition of a then weak Russia into three separate regions; European, Siberian and Far Eastern.

All Nodes Covered

At the height of the unipolar moment, history did seem to have "ended." Both the western and eastern peripheries of Eurasia were under tight Western control – in Germany and Japan, the two critical nodes in Europe and East Asia. There was also that extra node in the southern periphery of Eurasia, namely the energy-wealthy Middle East.

Washington had encouraged the development of a multilateral European Union that might eventually rival the U.S. in some tech domains, but most of all would enable the U.S. to contain Russia by proxy.

China was only a delocalized, low-cost manufacture base for the expansion of Western capitalism. Japan was not only for all practical purposes still occupied, but also instrumentalized via the Asian Development Bank (ADB), whose message was: We fund your projects only if you are politically correct.

The primary aim, once again, was to prevent any possible convergence of European and East Asian powers as rivals to the US.

The confluence between communism and the Cold War had been essential to prevent Eurasia integration. Washington configured a sort of benign tributary system – borrowing from imperial China – designed to ensure perpetual unipolarity. It was duly maintained by a formidable military, diplomatic, economic, and covert apparatus, with a star role for the Chalmers Johnson-defined Empire of Bases encircling, containing and dominating Eurasia.

Compare this recent idyllic past with Brzezinski's – and Henry Kissinger's – worst nightmare: what could be defined today as the "revenge of history".

That features the Russia-China strategic partnership, from energy to trade: interpolating Russia-China geo-economics; the concerted drive to bypass the U.S. dollar; the AIIB and the BRICS's New Development Bank involved in infrastructure financing; the tech upgrade inbuilt in Made in China 2025 ; the push towards an alternative banking clearance mechanism (a new SWIFT); massive stockpiling of gold reserves; and the expanded politico-economic role of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

As Glenn Diesen formulates in his brilliant book, Russia's Geo-economic Strategy for a Greater Eurasia , "the foundations of an Eurasian core can create a gravitational pull to draw the rimland towards the centre."

If the complex, long-term, multi-vector process of Eurasia integration could be resumed by just one formula, it would be something like this: the heartland progressively integrating; the rimlands mired in myriad battlefields and the power of the hegemon irretrievably dissolving. Mahan, Mackinder and Spykman to the rescue? It's not enough.

Divide and Rule, Revisited

The Oracle still speaks.

The same applies for the preeminent post-mod Delphic Oracle, also known as Henry Kissinger, simultaneously adorned by hagiography gold and despised as a war criminal.

Before the Trump inauguration, there was much debate in Washington about how Kissinger might engineer – for Trump – a "pivot to Russia" that he had envisioned 45 years ago. This is how I framed the shadow play a t the time.

In the end, it's always about variations of Divide and Rule – as in splitting Russia from China and vice-versa. In theory, Kissinger advised Trump to "rebalance" towards Russia to oppose the irresistible Chinese ascension. It won't happen, not only because of the strength of the Russia-China strategic partnership, but because across the Beltway, neocons and humanitarian imperialists ganged up to veto it.

Brzezinski's perpetual Cold War mindset still lords over a fuzzy mix of the Wolfowitz Doctrine and the Clash of Civilizations. The Russophobic Wolfowitz Doctrine – still fully classified – is code for Russia as the perennial top existential threat to the U.S. The Clash, for its part, codifies another variant of Cold War 2.0: East (as in China) vs. West.

Kissinger is trying some rebalancing/hedging himself, noting that the mistake the West (and NATO) is making "is to think that there is a sort of historic evolution that will march across Eurasia – and not to understand that somewhere on that march it will encounter something very different to a Westphalian entity."

Both Eurasianist Russia and civilization-state China are already on post-Westphalian mode. The redesign goes deep. It includes a key treaty signed in 2001, only a few weeks before 9/11, stressing that both nations renounce any territorial designs on one another's territory. This happens to concern, crucially, the Primorsky Territory in the Russian Far East along the Amur River, which was ruled by the Ming and Qing empires.

Moreover, Russia and China commit never to do deals with any third party, or allow a third country to use its territory to harm the other's sovereignty, security and territorial integrity.

So much for turning Russia against China. Instead, what will develop 24/7 are variations of U.S. military and economic containment against Russia, China and Iran – the key nodes of Eurasia integration – in a geo-strategic spectrum. It will include intersections of heartland and rimland across Syria, Ukraine, Afghanistan and the South China Sea. That will proceed in parallel to the Fed weaponizing the U.S. dollar at will.

Heraclitus Defies Voltaire

Voltaire

Alastair Crooke took a great shot at deconstructing why Western global elites are terrified of the Russian conceptualization of Eurasia. It's because "they 'scent' a stealth reversion to the old, pre-Socratic values: for the Ancients the very notion of 'man', in that way, did not exist. There were only men: Greeks, Romans, barbarians, Syrians, and so on. This stands in obvious opposition to universal, cosmopolitan 'man'."

So it's Heraclitus versus Voltaire – even as "humanism" as we inherited it from the Enlightenment, is de facto over. Whatever is left roaming our wilderness of mirrors depends on the irascible mood swings of the Goddess of the Market. No wonder one of the side effects of progressive Eurasia integration will be not only a death blow to Bretton Woods but also to "democratic" neoliberalism.

What we have now is also a remastered version of sea power versus land powers. Relentless Russophobia is paired with supreme fear of a Russia-Germany rapprochement – as Bismarck wanted, and as Putin and Merkel recently hinted at. The supreme nightmare for the U.S. is in fact a truly Eurasian Beijing-Berlin-Moscow partnership.

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has not even begun; according to the official Beijing timetable, we're still in the planning phase. Implementation starts next year. The horizon is 2039.

(Wellcome Library, London.)

This is China playing a long-distance game of go on steroids, incrementally making the best strategic decisions (allowing for margins of error, of course) to render the opponent powerless as he does not even realize he is under attack.

The New Silk Roads were launched by Xi Jinping five years ago, in Astana (the Silk Road Economic Belt) and Jakarta (the Maritime Silk Road). It took Washington almost half a decade to come up with a response. And that amounts to an avalanche of sanctions and tariffs. Not good enough.

Russia for its part was forced to publicly announce a show of mesmerizing weaponry to dissuade the proverbial War Party adventurers probably for good – while heralding Moscow's role as co-driver of a brand new game.

On sprawling, superimposed levels, the Russia-China partnership is on a roll; recent examples include summits in Singapore, Astana and St. Petersburg ; the SCO summit in Qingdao; and the BRICS Plus summit.

Were the European peninsula of Asia to fully integrate before mid-century – via high-speed rail, fiber optics, pipelines – into the heart of massive, sprawling Eurasia, it's game over. No wonder Exceptionalistan elites are starting to get the feeling of a silk rope drawn ever so softly, squeezing their gentle throats.

Pepe Escobar is the correspondent-at-large for Hong Kong-based Asia Times . His latest book is 2030 . Follow him on Facebook .

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Ron Craven aka Ronzig the Wizard , August 30, 2018 at 1:20 am

Isn't it ironic; the people of the Western world, at least those of us who even have a clue of what's happening, are reduced to praying for Russia and China to save us from our own elite leaders WHO SEEK TO REDUCE ALL OF US TO ABSOLUTE SLAVERY? I thank God that Putin is a political genius who surpasses anything the West can put forward. And China the definition of inscrutable has quietly allowed us to finance their takeover of the complete Western economic system which is breathing its last breaths as our leaders wonder what happened.
I have a friend who has a masters degree in business and economics yet he has no clue of what is happening right before his eyes yet I who barely squeezed through grade 12 foresaw this a decade ago. It's pathetic that the most powerful people in the world are sp blinded by greed and dogma that they can't recognize the writing on the wall.

Tom Kath , August 29, 2018 at 7:56 pm

The reference to the pre Socratic "men" as compared to "Man" is significant. – It is inherent in the concept of "Globalism", "Hegemony", and "One God".

Jessika , August 29, 2018 at 7:47 pm

Dunderhead, I am not with the global warming/climate change folks at all! I am with folks who believe that we all must limit consuming and must learn to make do with less, not be greedy, live more simply. Climate change will always happen, that is basic geology, astronomy, science shows that. I am saying that, we are now seeing major shifts and I am with those who say our Sun is the major player. We have millions of landfills on earth, plastic and polllutants choking oceans and killing marine life. I consider these "carbon peddlers" just another form of disinformation and very misinformed, it's political hype for the masses, but we have serious consequences for future generations that are real due to our capitalistic overconsumption and nearly 8 billion on Earth. I think China has awareness of that to some extent, but the competitive pressure from the Western genesis of capitalistic consumption is huge. For my personal choices, I am working to keep my plastic usage to a minimum. There is evidence that we are in the midst of an electromagnetic polar shift right now, we are seeing an intensification of number of earthquakes right now, and the last few years we have witnessed extreme catastrophic earth events. It is Earth itself doing this, and it may be coming from the mantle, or even the core. I used to be support staff for earth scientists in Boston and I learned a lot, took geology courses.

Joe Wallace , August 29, 2018 at 11:57 pm

Jessika:

"I am with folks who believe that we all must limit consuming and must learn to make do with less, not be greedy, live more simply."

I'm with you on that. We in the U.S. and Canada live in immensely wealthy societies, despite the wage stagnation that afflicts those in the middle class and below. It might be making a virtue of necessity, but many of us can live relatively comfortable lives by luxuriating in adequacy, a privilege not accorded those in the developing world.

jose , August 29, 2018 at 6:52 pm

Mr. Escobar is correct to assert that "integration will be a death blow to Bretton Woods and "democratic" neoliberalism" If one internalized this basic premise, it is easy to comprehend why Western elites throw a monkey wrench at every possible opportunity of Asia and Europe integrating. They fail to realize that all things must come to an end because their minds are closed to this very real possibility. Paraphrasing minister and speaker john mason "Nothing dies quicker than a new idea in a closed mind" Their days are numbered and they know it.

jose , August 29, 2018 at 6:37 pm

What I concluded from this article was that Western elites cannot stop what is coming. It is a very natural process that Europe and Asia integrate at some point. Western elites can only postpone the inevitable with their wars and tariffs. In other words, the idea of integration has been maturing long enough and there is no turning back. Quoting Victor Hugo Les Miserables "No army can stop an idea whose time has come"

Dunderhead , August 29, 2018 at 6:36 pm

First off, Pepe you rock, you are the coolest and probably most interesting journalists out right now. Couple of comments however, what looks like Genius from the Chinese is just strategic common sense though you're right the Chinese do know how to play the long game. Speaking of which I really don't believe that they are going to be as benevolent a hegemon as Pepe is suggesting, they're not particularly good about respecting African opportunities for employment on some of their various projects in that region. All that being said I think the new Silk Road project is a fantastic idea and can only wish that that if these any sense left in these incompetent criminals running our government, they could figure out the long-term opportunities for cooperating with the Chinese, the arms manufacturers do not always have to produce arms, guns into plowshares as it were. Anyway Great to see your article and consortium, I've got to catch up with your stuff at Asia Times, Thanks.

Jessika , August 29, 2018 at 5:28 pm

Always fun to read Pepe Escobar, why i look at Asia Times online daily as well as Eurasia Futures and South China Morning Post. The Asians play the long game while the impatient West, especially US, play only the short gotta-have-it-NOW game. The bellicose bully bombing Machiavellian neocons with their hardening of arteries in the brain can't conceive of cooperation. There is one other surprise prime mover in this mix often overlooked, and that is Gaia or Mother Earth. At least it seems that Xi Jinping and the Chinese have made reference to environmental concerns with the BRI, which is more than can be said for the Western neocolonialists in their bombing for "democracy".

At a recent meeting with a top advisor of Assad in Syria, a Lebanese paper reported that the US negotiators said they would withdraw if Syria would give them a cut of the oil! Wow, what gall! Assad would not agree, wonder what's next? This is the way they work, as Pepe said, "My way or the highway", gangster diplomacy. There is no honor among thieves.

Dunderhead , August 29, 2018 at 6:48 pm

Jessica, There is obviously more carbon in the atmosphere, I don't think that is debatable but the technology to actually do something about this has been around for 45 years orso, the fact that they don't do anything about it, means to me this furor over climate change is just another government scam like overpopulation, anyway specific technologies: thorium based fission and long-term carbon sequestration, these are easy things to look up. I don't believe I know everything about this topic but it's even real debatable that wait now the climate is optimum in the sense that a slightly warmer climate all around gives longer growing seasons and makes it also less expensive to heat one's home. So to ask the question, why do you believe global warming is such a problem more than just general pollution?

irina , August 29, 2018 at 10:16 pm

Yes, here in the continental subarctic (Interior Alaska) we are looking forward to a longer
growing season and less heating expense. BUT what we are seeing is simply more variable
weather, making it harder to grow anything in an already challenging climate. Also, for some
reason (go figure) weeds are more adaptive to higher CO2 levels than food crops. Meaning
the weeds thrive even better than ever, while the food crops grow at about the same rate as
always, only more choked out by weeds than ever. Other problems include new (to us) bugs
and plant diseases as they move North, drier droughts and heavier rains (this was predicted)
and skewed seasons with much later springs and somewhat later falls. (Not great, as our
really sunny season is spring, not fall).

Many areas of the planet may end up having such unpredictable year-to-year weather that
annual agriculture, upon which most of the global population depends, becomes untenable.

Professor , August 29, 2018 at 5:24 pm

I've been reading Pepe's stuff for a few years now.I like it. He is good at, Macro/ big picture stuff. He's great on Pipelinestan issues as well. But I think he picks and chooses his ideas a little too freely at times .The result can be more like a collage at times than a Picasso. We are pushing real hard right now on Russia, China and Iran. Eurasian Integration Projects are clearly a threat to American dominance especially since we are undermining the dollar through unilateral sanctions and other tricks everywhere, up and down the line. This should be of great concern to our allies but they are already on board behind whatever decisions Our Government makes. They really don't don't have anywhere to go. Germany and Japan are totally integrated with our economy and Germany has been the biggest beneficiary in terms of economic and fiscal policy of NATO's march eastward. They love it and they'll buy Russia's gas too. No problem. We won't stop them. I believe Trump's strategy is less aggressive than Clinton's would have been. There really isn't much of a choice. One thing I would add, Big Picture: China did not build the Great Wall as a tourist attraction. It was to keep out barbarians/foreigners, After the Boxer Rebellion they kicked out foreigners. Mao kicked out foreigners. They are fine with themselves, A guy I know who spends a lot of time in China and knows many very well, socially, says that the Chinese think the next 1000 years belong to them. . Forget a Project for a New Chinese Century, They expect the New Silk Road to deliver the goods big time and forever. They need Russian Gas to pull it off. They also like 5th and 6th generation Russian weapons but so apparently do everyone else.

Stanko , August 29, 2018 at 4:26 pm

Master analasis.

Paul E. Merrell , August 29, 2018 at 1:44 pm

For those interested in the topic of this article, I heartily recommend reading an Army War College paper from 2000. It's longish, but gives MacInder, Spykman, and geopolitics itself a good debunking. http://ssi.armywarcollege.edu/pubs/parameters/articles/00summer/fettweis.htm

Dunderhead , August 29, 2018 at 7:20 pm

Great article, thanks!

Dunderhead , August 29, 2018 at 9:10 pm

Paul by the way, a couple of weeks back I revisited a post and sore your comment, thanks I think you made some valid points, I particularly thought it was encouraging of meaningful opposition to corporations having the rights of individuals, and your analogy about the regulation of the telephone companys back in the day, on the other hand, in an age of mass communication incorporate state propaganda the fact that more Americans cannot find it in their hearts to feel for the plight of Palestinians simply because they are ignorant of the fax in the matter is testimony to censorship has always been with us. I personally had no knowledge of the Liberty incident until about three months ago and I am a relatively avid reader, this discovery is due to independent journalism who support themselves directly through patrion or readit and probably other platforms, I think this is becoming normal, in certain ways this is a fortunate time to be alive. Anyway thanks again!

Herman , August 29, 2018 at 1:36 pm

The legitimate grievance against the United States is that it has overplayed its hand, throwing sanctions to anyone not adhering to its rules. The power we have over the world banking system created a Putin who rose to challenge our unipolar world. For the sake of the world, and the United States, it is to be hoped that we can be made to climb down and join the rest of the world as real equals.

Escobar mention the principle of Westphalian sovereignty which is part of the UN Charter: : maybe it should be read aloud on the floor of a joint session of Congress and tweeted to our President. Maybe sent to our networks and newspapers. We created the UN Charter, we should abide by it

Mary V , August 29, 2018 at 12:35 pm

This is a fantastic read. I am wondering why the links to the Asia Times pieces don't display correctly – hmmm – maybe it's the new censorship.

I like to think that American Exceptionalism is nearing its end, but I don't hold out hope it will happen soon enough. It appears they are doubling-down on the jingoism of late. Then again, that's what desperation looks like.

Jeff Harrison , August 29, 2018 at 12:18 pm

Pepe is always able to get you thinking

A major difference between the US and China is that the US tries to influence with heavy handed threats and coercion while the Chinese use flattery and assistance to help you see things their way. Russia under Putin acts like China but his predecessors were more of the heavy handed variety. In the end though American hubris and insufferability (from the last four presidents) has driven Russia and China together in a way that economic systems (communism) never could. The US is the past. We have frittered away so much of our wealth and international goodwill chasing phantom fears that were all well past their use by date decades ago. We have spent ourselves into penury. Not just because we have $22T in debt, but more importantly because we no longer have the economic engine to generate enough wealth to support $22T in debt and counting. Yeah, go ahead and print more money. Every dollar will be worth less and less.

Mary V , August 29, 2018 at 12:37 pm

Not to mention the gorilla in the room, the trillions of dollars going into our over-extended military, which doesn't get us anything but the reputation as global terrorists and bullies. :(

bobzz , August 29, 2018 at 4:28 pm

Well, I had a comment here, agreeing and enlarging on Jeff's, but it it gone. I've never had that happen before on CN. If CN did not do it, who did? Just asking.

A Johnson , August 29, 2018 at 4:33 pm

It's not 'we' that did all that, plenty of 'us' have been screaming for decades about foreign deaths, wars for profit, and looting of treasure BY the insiders. The elites did it, including buying the propaganda. 'We' always get stuck with their bill. I'd like a few necks stretched.

enochered , August 29, 2018 at 12:13 pm

This would all be fine if we were still dealing with Mandarins and Tzars but we are not and it is hard to escape from the fear that having watched Baron Rothschild build a new Kingdom quite close to China, that we are simply watching the construction of ever more 'private' Unions, which will, of course, be run by hidden controllers.

Gary Weglarz , August 29, 2018 at 11:57 am

"No wonder Exceptionalistan elites are starting to get the feeling of a silk rope drawn ever so softly, squeezing their gentle throats." – Thank you for that closing Pepe. I needed that very satisfying visual.

Groucho , August 29, 2018 at 11:41 am

Another excellent article from Escobar. I always appreciate his ability to summarize the huge geopolitical transformation that is under way. I also find the response of Western elites to be remarkable. Rather than work toward accommodation and cooperation they will bankrupt themselves in a futile attempt to maintain hegemony. Galbraith was correct when he said that those in power will bring about their total destruction rather than give up any part of their advantage.

Mary V , August 29, 2018 at 12:38 pm

I love the Galbraith sentiment – perfect.

Mark Thomason , August 29, 2018 at 11:13 am

A very long railway cannot support continental-scale trade and integration. That requires what does it now, 100,000-ton container ships in constant flow. It is a question of volume first, and of cost per container second. Ships are so far ahead it is absurd to compare.

China is developing the necessary commercial ports to use for this. That is the only real challenge, if there is one. That means the sea, the rim, for both the continent and its rivals. China's real progress is on that.

However, the US and allies are the other end of that sea route. It can't be maintained except by some level of cooperation. There can be no great game, not combined with the integration of world trade. That is a neocon fantasy, they promote as cover for their schemes to dominate with US state power to gain private profit.

TomG , August 29, 2018 at 10:44 am

While the Chinese plan then implement for a long term infrastructure strategy for interconnected markets, we skip the planning piece and go instead for yet another drone base in yet another foreign country. Our long term strategy is apparently to blow up what ever the Chinese-Russia-Euro alliance builds. This has certainly been our expression of 'defending our national interests'–the Kissinger-Brzezinski doctrine of endlessly repeating stupidity until we are completely bankrupt as a nation. When the global corporations abandon the USA for more vibrant and inherently stable infrastructure the USA empire can retire into its apparent destiny as the model for late 21st century failed states.

I hope I'm not expected to share Mr. Escobar's article with others. While I think important points were made and one can link easily to more information, I did think my eyes were going to glaze over with all the jargon and post-Westphalian modal references. Which is to say I might well have missed his most salient points. I'm not intellectual enough to know for sure. :-)

John V. Walsh , August 29, 2018 at 2:19 pm

TomG, You make an excellent point.
Indeed the Chinese agree as seen from this opinion piece in Global Times: http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1117108.shtml
The money quote is:
"Considering that sea transportation is comparatively cheap and safe, China must attach great importance to the construction of the south route of the Silk Road, that is, to connect the CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) with the Silk Road Economic Belt, and to make supporting the economic and social development of Pakistan as the top priority of the Silk Road strategy."
"There are pros and cons to the development gap between eastern and western China. On the one hand, it poses a serious challenge to the government's efforts to support the development of Xinjiang and Tibet and to eliminate poverty. On the other, it sustains China's demographic dividend and provides a historical opportunity for the "second reform and opening up." The vast central and western regions have got their advantages in terms of labor cost, land supply and natural resources. Therefore, on the basis of access to the Indian Ocean and China-Pakistan Railway, the Kashgar special economic zone, and other western towns are expected to become "inland ports" connecting the oceans, thus re-creating the Shenzhen miracle and becoming the engine of China's second great opening up and development."

In sum the land route goes from the Kashgar region of Xian in China through Pakistan to the Indian Ocean. In this way China becomes a two-ocean power in a way. But it is a long way to Kashgar from the rest of China even the western part and another long haul through Pakistan to the Indian Ocean. Can this work?

On the other hand, although transport via a land route across all of Eurasia by train is more expensive than by rail, rail is quicker and not as prohibitively expensive as air transport. Will it all work?

I believe MacKinder saw rail transport as the vehicle of Eurasian integration and felt that the trans-Siberian railway was the first attempt at it, if memory serves. Was he right?

In general the Belt and Road must not only be a good idea, it must make sense economically. Does it? Hope so because it holds out hope for the development of the Asian interior, including western China and for spreading China's successful poverty alleviation and development model across Asia and even into Africa. Not to mention it spells the end of the unipolar world which is becoming a worse nightmare every day.

Bob Van Noy , August 29, 2018 at 9:58 am

Geopolitics is endlessly fascinating as we see here again with thanks to Pepe Escobar. Now we hear of yet another geo-arrangement from Glenn Diesen. I havn't read Mr. Diesen's book but I don't doubt that he offers up many insights for would be World Managers. Those managers, both in the past, and those yet to advise, have generally caused much serious chaos to the general populations affected by their thoughts, neither Henry Kissinger or Zbigniew Brzezinski have done America much good for their theories. I'm convinced that the American People are not now and never were, interested in any concept of Empire. We've been Marketed or Propagandized into a coordinated responses, usually an inappropriate ones. This time we actually have an opportunity to re-evaluate our recent lost history and rebuild better more appropriately eco-friendly local economies and to become a better World Neighbor or Partner as the Diplomats say.

A good previous article is here: https://consortiumnews.com/2016/09/07/old-cold-warriors-cool-to-new-cold-war/

TomG , August 29, 2018 at 10:54 am

" we actually have an opportunity to re-evaluate our recent lost history and rebuild better more appropriately eco-friendly local economies and to become a better World Neighbor "

Oh, how my hope lies in doing just this!

One thing I've observed again and again living beside the Amish, they are kind to those of us 'outside their community' and will help if any help is needed. Kindness and neighborliness go hand in hand–and they us show it can be done.

John V. Walsh , August 29, 2018 at 2:32 pm

TomG,
Another good thought.
BUT the future is no longer in our hands – it is in the hands of the Eurasian powers, China, Russia, Iran AND India. They have to do something new for humanity that goes beyond the old imperial ways to look at the world. Escobar AND Kissinger are both fond of citing Zheng He as evidence that genuine Empire as oppose to border disputes is not in the Chinese culture – or in their DNA as Xi puts it.
The best we can do here in the US is to make sure that the US ruling Elite does not blow us all up, the Samson option, as it tries to come to terms with the new realities. That means supporting all peaceful overtures to Russia and China. One example is the recent Helsinki Summit which deserves our support and had the approval of a majority of Americans. So did the idea of a follow-up. Unfortunately amongst organized progressives there was nary a word of praise or support with very few exceptions, one of them being CodePink which is much to be commended. Otherwise Trump Derangement Syndrome prevailed. And so we drift toward oblivion.

mike k , August 29, 2018 at 9:14 am

Heading off the Samson option by the wounded hegemon US Empire will be a major concern for all global players from now on. As well as factoring in the inevitable collapse of industrial civilization. There is not any way for all this to end well in sight at this time. Human extinction seems by far the most likely outcome for us. Too bad – we have probably screwed up our world, and ourselves, beyond the possibility of recovery.

Sally Snyder , August 29, 2018 at 7:30 am

Here is a more detailed look at how both Russia and China are putting a mechanism in place that will allow them to work around future trade problems with the United States:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2018/06/russia-and-china-growing-alliance-under.html

The sanctions and tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration against Russia and China will become increasingly ineffective as the old unipolar global order continues to fade away.

[Aug 29, 2018] The Sun Does Not Revolve Around the US by Jean Ranc

Most of US Russiagate charges are projection. Russiagate is a color revolution of the block of neoliberals and neocons to depose Trump. They are afraid of too many skeletons in the closet to allow Trump to finish his term. And for a right reason. Trump is unpredictable and he at one moment can turn on them and start revealing unpleasant truth about Bush II and Obama.
But rumors about the demise of the US neoliberal empire are slightly exaggerated ;-). Without providing an alternative model to neoliberalism and without ethnological superiority China does not stand a chance.
Notable quotes:
"... Through endless repetition, allegations are transformed into "facts." Sanctions are loaded upon sanctions, based on these unsubstantiated charges in an economic war against Russia. ..."
"... Today's propaganda tool is named "RussiaGate," a campaign to bring down a deeply flawed U.S. president for possibly trying to mend U.S. relations with Russia. ..."
"... Nations, such as Russia, China & others just want to determine their own futures & keep their National sovereignty's! It's America, with it's unbelievable arrogance & hubris, that wants to dominate & impose its sovereignty on every Country on Earth! ..."
"... Their claim to One Truth (no alternate facts tolerated in NYT/WaPo Land) that they've enjoyed for more than 100 years has fallen victim to the Internet, a creation of the American war technology development system (DARPA) ..."
"... other Nations may reach a saturation point when enough is enough & they finally come to the realization that this crooked American Empire is to dangerous to be allowed too continue & must be stopped, once & for all time! ..."
Aug 29, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

... ... ...

Continuing Empire

It was around 1898, when America first starting thinking it was the center of the universe. In that year the U.S. intervened in Cuba's war for independence and proceeded to take over parts of the decrepit Spanish Empire, from Latin America to the Philippines. Shortly before, in 1893, the U.S. overthrew the Queen of Hawaii on behalf of U.S.-backed sugar and pineapple plantation owners.

That led to a long history of political interference in other countries, in the form of destabilization, coups and invasions. Once the Soviet Union dissolved in 1991, a narrative was fostered to justify expanding NATO to Russia's borders.

In the last four years, anti-Russian propaganda has reached a fever pitch: lies about Russia's "expansionism" in Ukraine; hype about Russia's "meddling" in the U.S. elections, creating an existential "threat to democracy;" unproven allegations of Russia using chemical weapons to poison the Skripals in London. Experts are trotted out on major media to further the narrative without hard evidence. Together with think-tanks, the American and British media run these stories daily with almost no counter news or opinions. Through endless repetition, allegations are transformed into "facts." Sanctions are loaded upon sanctions, based on these unsubstantiated charges in an economic war against Russia.

In 2004, journalist Ron Suskind wrote in The New York Times magazine that a top White House strategist for President George W. Bush -- identified later as Karl Rove, Bush's Deputy White House Chief of Staff -- told him, "We're an empire now; we create our own reality."

Swiss journalist, Guy Mettan, in his 2017 book, Creating Russophobia: From the Great Religious Schism to Anti-Putin Hysteria , writes that the West's psycho-social pathology about Russia dates back over 1,000 years to the division of Christendom between the Orthodox and Roman churches. The U.S. is a relative newcomer to this, but seeks perhaps its biggest role.

" More than merely dominate, the American superpower now seeks to control history," Mettan says.

Myth of Russian Expansionism

The astute University of Chicago Professor John J. Mearsheimer exposed how the West provoked the Ukraine crisis in his 2014 Foreign Affairs article, "Why the Ukraine Crisis is the West's Fault: The Liberal Delusions That Provoked Putin." But the American foreign policy establishment and media remain committed to the suppression of facts about the U.S.-backed coup in Kiev and the resulting escalating tensions with Russia.

Ignoring or fabricating evidence, the U.S. and NATO persist in lying that Russia has expansionist goals in Ukraine, Crimea and Syria. Russia is helping ethnic Russians in the east of Ukraine who are resisting the coup, Crimea (which had been part of Russia since 1783 and transferred by the Soviets to Ukraine in 1954) held a referendum in 2014 in which the public voted to rejoin Russia. The Syrian government invited Russia in to help fight Western and Gulf-backed jihadists trying to violently overthrow the government, as even then Secretary of State John Kerry admitted .

Another scholar, Richard Sakwa, Professor of Russian and European Politics at the University of Kent, writes in his latest book, Russia Against the Rest: The Post-Cold War Crisis of World Order , that the Ukraine crisis crystallized the profound differences between Russia and the West, differences that are not just a replay of the "Cold War."

Simply put, under the banner of the indispensable "liberal world order," neo-conservative warriors and "democracy"-spreading-"humanitarian-interventionists" are promoting the Russophobia "reality" to justify American hegemony.

Ditching Solzhenitsyn

Solzhenitsyn : Ditched when he turned on America. (Wikimedia Commons)

One of the greatest illustrations of the centuries-old Russophobia, says Mettan in his 2017 book, is the case of Russian dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn.

" During the 1990s, I was shocked by the way the West treated Solzhenitsyn," Mettan wrote. "For decades, we had published, celebrated, and acclaimed the great writer as bearing the torch of anti-Soviet dissidence," but only when he criticized his communist Russia. But after moving to the U.S., when Solzhenitsyn showed a preference for privacy "rather than attending anticommunist conferences, western media and academics began to distance themselves."

And when Solzhenitsyn returned to Russia and spoke out against Russian 'westernizers' and liberals who denied Russian interests, he was labeled "an outdated, senile writer," though he had not changed his fundamental views on freedom.

After the mid-July, Trump-Putin Helsinki summit, there were countless mass media delusions and hysteria against U.S.-Russia ties, reminiscent of the Hearst newspaper empire's propaganda that whipped up a frenzy to support the empire-building war against Spain in 1898. Professor Stephen Kinzer vividly described the unsuccessful battle by prestigious anti-imperialists against the power of the Hearst propaganda in his latest book, The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire ."

Today's propaganda tool is named "RussiaGate," a campaign to bring down a deeply flawed U.S. president for possibly trying to mend U.S. relations with Russia.

Do we have enough good sense left to follow the advice of Henry David Thoreau: "Let us settle ourselves, and work and wedge our feet downward through the mud and slush of opinion, and prejudice till we come to a hard bottom and rocks in place, which we can call reality."

Or, as I thought when I visited Galileo's house that day in the Florentine hills: the world does not revolve around America.

Jean Ranc is a retired psychologist/research associate at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.


Gary Weglarz , August 28, 2018 at 7:42 pm

Wonderful observations that challenge the complete and utter madness of our times here in the U.S., and the West in general. The inquisitorial "accusations" leveled against Putin and Russia by the West bear no more resemblance to "reality" than the lunatic accusations that the Holy Inquisition leveled against "witches," "heretics" and "non-believers" for centuries as it used terror to consolidate power. Given the ever more shrill and painfully persistent nature of these ongoing nonsense anti-Russian accusations – it would appear more and more of us in the West are falling into the category of – "non-believers."

jose , August 28, 2018 at 8:45 pm

A very good post Gary. The West is decadent and corrupt.Whatever high moral grounds the West once held, I am afraid they are either forgotten or totally gone.

Jessika , August 28, 2018 at 6:43 pm

Delightful piece to read, great comments as usual. I can only add that the neocolonialists who don't want to give up leading the US over the edge, as mike says "into the abyss", will be forced to change their ways, well stated by Babylon and others. The tragedy of what they have done by their narcissistic, egoistic, delusional misleading, is that they have wrecked the lives of millions worldwide. But of course, that is the story of deluded conquerors until they meet their own end. I welcome the sun setting on the "American Century"; a sharp reset awaits us all but we should welcome it.

jose , August 28, 2018 at 8:48 pm

Jessika: the saddest part in all this is that they still continue to wreck and decimate lives worldwide. It is like a cancer eating and obliterating every thing in their path. A very incisive post.

Diana Lee , August 29, 2018 at 12:08 am

The cancer is psychopathy! These people have no conscience or empathy. They are liars and manipulators. They treat people like objects to be used and abused. Until America admits that we've had a substantial percentage of psychopathic leaders and mentality, from the Puritans forward, we will never recover from the psychological, social, economic, political, legal, religious destruction this ilk has forced upon the rest of us. It took me deep research and therapy to discover that psychopaths project themselves onto the rest of us and then claim we are somehow damaged, flawed or have sinful human nature. The problem has always been the psychopaths among us (1%) who have created hierarchies and placed themselves atop them. They have bamboozled most of us with their lies but as we wake up to their games, we can kick them out of power and we can create a country of the 99% with conscience and empathy rather than a country of slaveowners and deluded "Israelites" who believed they had the right to exploit, enslave, kill

KiwiAntz , August 29, 2018 at 1:36 am

It's not sad, it's what's deathcult tyrants & dying Empires do, they take as many victims as they can, once they realise the end is nigh! It's a mass shooter mentality & it's disgraceful!

JR , August 28, 2018 at 9:14 pm

HI Jessika,
I tried to find you while I was still living in NH as I got the idea you live there as well. I had lived in the Dartmouth area in the 70's but the brutal winters were too much! this time around so I returned to my home base here in Chapel Hill. If you'd like to be in touch, you can reach me at my old-but-still-good Santa Fe address: jranc@q.com

mike k , August 28, 2018 at 5:37 pm

American egotism is legendary. It is the defining mark of the breed. Ignorant know-it-alls lead us confidently into the abyss.

jose , August 28, 2018 at 8:53 pm

Mike: If American leaders that are in control of the country have studied history of any empire, they would come to the realization that empires do not last forever. The illogical part is that empire's life expectancy has been more or less the same worldwide. And like an opened book the end is closing in and they know it.

Realist , August 28, 2018 at 5:00 pm

Excellent bit of necessary truth-telling. Too bad it won't be read in most of America, not because the people would reject its premise, but because their keepers just won't let them see it in the highly manipulated mass media.

America has repeatedly become what it most professes to hate: first an onerous empire like Spain, then a pack of fascists like Nazi Germany, and now totalitarian tyrants like the Soviets. Welcome to the truth, the one NOT fabricated by Rove's inheritors of empire.

Babyl-on , August 28, 2018 at 4:32 pm

This thought is so important to understand if you are to make any sense of the new multi-polar world which does not revolve around the failing Western empire.

China's Belt and Road is a catalyst but China will benefit only through the interconnection of the entire Eurasian land mass – sooner than you think, high-speed trains will cross the steppes. That is the new world the Enlightenment era is dead the Eurasian era is opening. Eurasia will trade most naturally with Africa and it will prosper because The US Empire is the last of the Enlightenment white European empires.

When you consider the integration of the great Eurasian land mass for the first time is history (the ancient Silk Road writ large) it's easy to forget about a US over there separated by all that water from the thriving markets.

Those oceans which protected the center of power from attack now are a big disadvantage in trade.
We are witnessing the end of the Enlightenment and the end of Empire which it spawned.

China is not imperial, Russia is not imperial – no country today seeks empire but the US and they are failing in every way. Western Liberal Democracy also died with the Enlightenment, new forms of governance and culture will develop, the sky really is the limit, now that the old dead Enlightenment is moving out of the way.

It would be a brighter future if not for that pesky climate.

KiwiAntz , August 29, 2018 at 1:51 am

Nations, such as Russia, China & others just want to determine their own futures & keep their National sovereignty's! It's America, with it's unbelievable arrogance & hubris, that wants to dominate & impose its sovereignty on every Country on Earth!

Russia & China are the future with the one belt, one road initiative & America is being left in the rear view mirror & is on the path to total oblivion thanks to its warmongering ways! The end of this corrupt American Empire can't come soon enough for people who want to live in peace!

O Society , August 28, 2018 at 4:12 pm

Well done, Jean Ranc! BTW, I am a Wolfpack grad

Egocentrism isn't just a Donald Trump thing, it's an American thing. America's never-ending RussiaGate narrative is a classic example of psychological projection. It can't be US who has the problem, it must be THEM who has the problem. Time to own it.

Donald Trump is an All-American Gangster

dick Spencer , August 28, 2018 at 3:07 pm

paraphrasing J. Pilger -- America should leave the rest of the world alone -- leave it alone

KiwiAntz , August 29, 2018 at 2:15 am

Yes, I second what Mr Pilger stated & I will add a few more requests? "Leave the World" alone! Stop your Warmongering interference in other Countries affairs! Immediately stop all your murderous Wars, Coups & Financial & Economic terrorism such as weaponising the dollar & Trade sanctions to illegally punish other Nations! Abide by International Laws & the U.N. charter! Remove your 800 bases from around the World & stick to your own backyard! Stop being the Worlds Policeman because no one asked you to perform this role! Look after your own people first & stop wasting trillions of dollars on the pointless & stupid Military Industrial Complex! Ban Campaign lobbyists & big money from Politics! Jail all corrupt Corporates & thieving Bankers, Politicians & seize their assets! These are a few things for a start! There are many more things you could do more numerous to name here, but the main thing is LEAVE THE WORLD ALONE! We are sick to death of this American Empire!

Sally Snyder , August 28, 2018 at 2:28 pm

Here is what Americans really think about the anti-Russia hysteria coming from Washington:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2018/08/americans-on-russia-will-of-people.html

Less than half of Americans believe that Russia's interference in the 2016 election made a difference to the final outcome and nearly six in ten Americans believe that it is important that Washington continue to improve relations with Moscow.

Jeff Harrison , August 28, 2018 at 2:25 pm

When you get to the end of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, six volumes of dense, erudite prose which details the failings of a decadent society, Gibbon lets you in on a secret. The Roman Empire was militarily defeated. Not all at once, mind. But militarily defeated nonetheless. Consider what that means for the US.

RnM , August 28, 2018 at 9:27 pm

Rome became a victim of its success, being overstretched beyond their war technology (horses, shields, swords and siege machines.)
My inability and unwillingness to predict the end of the rise of The Empire of "We the People" and its brand of War Technologies, is due to my close perspective and life-long Bernaiseian (?sp) brainwashing by the mass media, which, thankfully, has, since 2016, been dealt a blow to the mask on their (the corporate media's) Totalitarian nature.

Their claim to One Truth (no alternate facts tolerated in NYT/WaPo Land) that they've enjoyed for more than 100 years has fallen victim to the Internet, a creation of the American war technology development system (DARPA). So, in the American attempt to surpass the Romans, the Empire of We the People (as a Totalitarian dystopia) may well be thwarted by the spread of open information. I hope so. The alternative might be very difficult to defeat.

Diana Lee , August 29, 2018 at 12:23 am

Jeff, if you enjoyed Gibbons, I think you would really enjoy Michael Parenti's, "The Assassination of Julius Caesar". There are so many parallels between the late Roman Republic and today's America. Michael got his PhD in political science and history from Yale and writes "people's history". He argues convincingly that Caesar was assassinated -- - not for being an egomaniac and dictator -- - but because he stood up against the most elite in the senate by seeking reforms that would benefit the masses. He actually argues that Gibbons wrote as a historian from the priviledged class and therefore never condemned the senate for exploiting the masses.

KiwiAntz , August 29, 2018 at 2:34 am

Yes, what it means,& if History is anything to go by, that other Nations may reach a saturation point when enough is enough & they finally come to the realization that this crooked American Empire is to dangerous to be allowed too continue & must be stopped, once & for all time!

The Roman Empire never saw the Barbarian hordes such as the Visigoth's, Huns & Vandals coming until it was to late! Will the American Empire see there downfall coming? 9/11 proved the arrogant American Empire couldn't even see that event coming, due to their own hubris & complacency!

[Aug 27, 2018] There are huge holes in Browder story, made clear in his deposition in the Prevezon case

Magnitsky story is the textbook, perfect illustration of the level of control of CIA over media. Almost everything in official story is a lie, still it is never challenged.
Aug 27, 2018 | www.unz.com

RobinG , says: July 24, 2018 at 4:59 am GMT

@exiled off mainstreet

#BROWDERGATE

A perfectly good article, I'm sure, but why diffuse ourselves [and engender feelings of fear and hopelessness as you express] when a strategic pressure point has presented? Johnstone makes no mention of Bill Browder. Nor do the [100, so far] commenters.

BILL BROWDER is a key figure in the anti-Trump, anti-Russia hysteria. The notorious Trump Tower meeting was about the Magnitsky Act, a fabrication by Browder to hide his financial crimes. Browder "testified" in the Senate expressly to demonize Putin. Browder's contacts in the IC, the Jewish Lobby, and the fawning media have enabled his propaganda assault this week. He's appeared -- unchallenged, virtually unquestioned -- on countless talk shows. But he's been running scared at the mention of interrogation by Russians. There are huge holes in his story, made clear in his deposition in the Prevezon case. The truth will bring him down! And perhaps his Deep State supporters, along with him.

Ask your Senators if they've heard/read Browder's 2015 deposition in the Prevezon case. (See comment 161 under The Untouchable Mr. Browder? by Israel Shamir for links.)

Research links to primary sources on #Browdergate -

https://populist.tv/2018/01/20/bill-browder-links-and-resources-to-understand-controversy/

RobinG , says: July 24, 2018 at 5:02 pm GMT
@yurivku

...BTW, have you seen "THE MAGNITSKY ACT – BEHIND THE SCENES" that Phil Giraldi posted today? Debunking anti-Russian criminal sociopaths like Bill Browder will go a long way to improving relations. Not to mention easing pressure on the unfortunate Trump.

Full research primary links available here, including Browder's 2015 deposition in the U.S. vs. Prevezon Holdings case. Every Senator who voted to support Browder should see this. [Any who already have, double shame!]

https://populist.tv/2018/01/20/bill-browder-links-and-resources-to-understand-controversy/

[Aug 26, 2018] Jonathan Winer, Steele dossier and the Magnitsky Act

Notable quotes:
"... However, as convincingly established by dissident Russian film-maker Andrei Nekrasov's (banned) investigative documentary, the unfortunate Magnitsky was neither a human rights crusader, nor a lawyer, nor beaten to death. He was an accountant jailed for his role in Browder's business dealings, who died of natural causes as a result of inadequate medical treatment. The case was hyped up as a major human rights drama by Browder in order to discredit Russian charges against himself. ..."
"... The Magnitsky Act also condemns legal prosecution of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Browder, on a much smaller scale, also made a fortune ripping off Russians during the Yeltsin years, and later got into trouble with Russian tax collectors. Since Browder had given up his U.S. citizenship in order to avoid paying U.S. taxes, he had reason to fear Russian efforts to extradite him for tax evasion and other financial misdeeds. ..."
"... So, the Fixer in Chief could have said to the worried Browder, "No problem. All that we need to do is make your case a politically motivated case. Then they can't touch you." Winer's clever treaty is a perfect Catch-22. The treaty doesn't apply to a case if it is politically motivated, and if it is Russian, it must be politically motivated. ..."
"... Needless to say, Khodorkovsky's Corbiere Trust lobbied heavily to get Congress to pass the Magnitsky Act, which also repeated its defense of Khodorkovsky himself. This type of "Russian interference intended to influence policy" is not even noticed, while U.S. authorities scour cyberspace for evidence of trolls. ..."
"... The United States, in contrast, is in favor of interference in other countries on principle: because it seeks a Unipolar world, with a single "democratic" system, and considers itself the final authority as to which regime a country should have and how it should run its affairs. ..."
"... U.S. policy-makers practice interference every day. And they are perfectly willing to allow Russians to interfere in American politics – so long as those Russians are "unipolar" like themselves, like Khodorkovsky, who aspire to precisely the same unipolar world sought by the State Department and George Soros. Indeed, the American empire depends on such interference from Iraqis, Libyans, Iranians, Russians, Cubans – all those who come to Washington to try to get U.S. power to settle old scores or overthrow the government in the country they came from. All those are perfectly welcome to lobby for a world ruled by America. ..."
Aug 26, 2018 | www.unz.com

As well as the tobacco industry and the Clinton Foundation, APCO also works for Khodorkovsky. To be precise, according to public listings, the fourth biggest of APCO's many clients is the Corbiere Trust, owned by Khodorkovsky and registered in Guernsey. The trust tends and distributes some of the billions that the oligarch got out of Russia before he was jailed. Corbiere money was spent to lobby both for Resolution 322 (supporting Khodorkovky after his arrest in Russia) and for the Magnitsky Act (more later). Margery Kraus, APCO's president and CEO, is a member of Mikhail Khodorkovsky's son Pavel's Institute of Modern Russia, devoted to "promoting democratic values" – in other words, to building political opposition to Vladimir Putin.

In 2009 Jonathan Winer went back to the State Department where he was given a distinguished service award for having somehow rescued thousands of stranded members of the Muhahedin-e Khalq from their bases in Iraq they were trying to overthrow the Iranian government. The MeK, once officially recognized as a terrorist organization by the State Department, has become a pet instrument in U.S. and Israeli regime change operations directed at Iran.

However, it was Winer's extracurricular activities at State that finally brought him into the public spotlight early this year – or rather, the spotlight of the House Intelligence Committee, whose chairman Devin Nunes (R-Cal) named him as one of a network promoting the notorious "Steele Dossier" which accused Trump of illicit financial dealing and compromising sexual activities in Russia.

By Winer's own account, he had been friends with former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele since his days at APCO. Back at State, he regularly channeled Steele reports, ostensibly drawn from contacts with friendly Russian intelligence agents, to Victoria Nuland, in charge of Russian affairs, and top Russian experts. These included the infamous "Steele dossier". In September 2016, Winer's old friend Sidney Blumenthal – a particularly close advisor to Hillary Clinton – gave him notes written by a more mysterious Clinton insider named Cody Shearer, repeating the salacious attacks.

All this dirt was spread through government agencies and mainstream media before being revealed publicly just before Trump's inauguration, used to stimulate the "Russiagate" investigation by Robert Mueller. The dossier has been discredited but the investigation goes on and on.

So, it is all right to take seriously information allegedly obtained from "Russian agents" and spread it around, so long as it can damage Trump. As with so much else in Washington, double standards are the rule.

Jonathan Winer and the Magnitsky Act

Jonathan Winer played a major role in Congressional adoption of the "Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012" (the Magnitsky Act), a measure that effectively ended post-Cold War hopes for normal relations between Washington and Moscow. This act was based on a highly contentious version of the November 16, 2009 death in prison of accountant Sergei Leonidovich Magnitsky, as told to Congress by hedge fund manager Bill Browder (grandson of Earl Browder, head of the Communist Party USA 1934-1945). According to Browder, Magnitsky was a lawyer beaten to death in prison as a result of his crusade for human rights.

However, as convincingly established by dissident Russian film-maker Andrei Nekrasov's (banned) investigative documentary, the unfortunate Magnitsky was neither a human rights crusader, nor a lawyer, nor beaten to death. He was an accountant jailed for his role in Browder's business dealings, who died of natural causes as a result of inadequate medical treatment. The case was hyped up as a major human rights drama by Browder in order to discredit Russian charges against himself.

In any case

The Magnitsky Act also condemns legal prosecution of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Browder, on a much smaller scale, also made a fortune ripping off Russians during the Yeltsin years, and later got into trouble with Russian tax collectors. Since Browder had given up his U.S. citizenship in order to avoid paying U.S. taxes, he had reason to fear Russian efforts to extradite him for tax evasion and other financial misdeeds.

It was Jonathan Winer who found a solution to Browder's predicament.

, "When Browder consulted me, [ ] I suggested creating a new law to impose economic and travel sanctions on human-rights violators involved in grand corruption. Browder decided this could secure a measure of justice for Magnitsky. He initiated a campaign that led to the enactment of the Magnitsky Act. Soon other countries enacted their own Magnitsky Acts, including Canada, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and most recently, the United Kingdom."

Russian authorities are still trying to pursue their case against Browder. In his press conference following the Helsinki meeting with Trump, Vladimir Putin suggested allowing U.S. authorities to question the Russians named in the Mueller indictment in exchange for allowing Russian officials to question individuals involved in the Browder case, including Winer and former U.S. ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul. Putin observed that such an exchange was possible under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty signed between the two countries in 1999, back in the Yeltsin days when America was posing as Russia's best friend.

But the naïve Russians did not measure the craftiness of American lawyers.

As Winer wrote, "Under that treaty, Russia's procurator general can ask the U.S. attorney general to arrange for Americans to be ordered to testify to assist in a criminal case. But there is a fundamental exception: The attorney general can provide no such assistance in a politically motivated case." (My emphasis.)

"I know this", he wrote, "because I was among those who helped put it there. Back in 1999, when we were negotiating the agreement with Russia, I was the senior State Department official managing U.S.-Russia law-enforcement relations."

So, the Fixer in Chief could have said to the worried Browder, "No problem. All that we need to do is make your case a politically motivated case. Then they can't touch you." Winer's clever treaty is a perfect Catch-22. The treaty doesn't apply to a case if it is politically motivated, and if it is Russian, it must be politically motivated.

In a July 15, 2016, complaint to the Justice Department, Browder's Heritage Capital Management accused both American and Russian opponents of the Magnitsky Act of violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA; adopted in 19938 with Nazis in mind). Among the "lobbyists" cited was the late Ron Dellums (falsely identified in the complaint as a "former Republican congressman").

The Heritage Capital Management brief declared that: "While lawyers representing foreign principals are exempt from filing under FARA, this is only true if the attorney does not try to influence policy at the behest of his client." However, by disseminating anti-Magnitsky material to Congress, any Russian lawyer was "clearly trying to influence policy" was therefore in violation of FARA filing requirements."

Catch-22 all over again.

Needless to say, Khodorkovsky's Corbiere Trust lobbied heavily to get Congress to pass the Magnitsky Act, which also repeated its defense of Khodorkovsky himself. This type of "Russian interference intended to influence policy" is not even noticed, while U.S. authorities scour cyberspace for evidence of trolls.

Conclusion

The basic ideological conflict here is between Unipolar America and Multipolar Russia. Russia's position, as Vladimir Putin made clear in his historic speech at the 2007 Munich security conference, is to allow countries to enjoy national sovereignty and develop in their own way. The current Russian government is against interference in other countries' politics on principle. It would naturally prefer an American government willing to allow this.

The United States, in contrast, is in favor of interference in other countries on principle: because it seeks a Unipolar world, with a single "democratic" system, and considers itself the final authority as to which regime a country should have and how it should run its affairs.

So, if Russians were trying to interfere in U.S. domestic politics, they would not be trying to change the U.S. system but to prevent it from trying to change their own. Russian leaders clearly are sufficiently cultivated to realize that historic processes do not depend on some childish trick played on somebody's computer.

U.S. policy-makers practice interference every day. And they are perfectly willing to allow Russians to interfere in American politics – so long as those Russians are "unipolar" like themselves, like Khodorkovsky, who aspire to precisely the same unipolar world sought by the State Department and George Soros. Indeed, the American empire depends on such interference from Iraqis, Libyans, Iranians, Russians, Cubans – all those who come to Washington to try to get U.S. power to settle old scores or overthrow the government in the country they came from. All those are perfectly welcome to lobby for a world ruled by America.

Russian interference in American politics is totally welcome so long as it helps turn public opinion against "multipolar" Putin, glorifies American democracy, serves U.S. interests including the military-industrial complex, helps break down national borders (except those of the United States and Israel) and puts money in appropriate pockets in the halls of Congress.

[Aug 26, 2018] Mass Dementia in the Western Establishment by Diana Johnstone

Notable quotes:
"... The individuals may be sane, but as a herd they are ready to leap off the cliff. ..."
"... For the past two years, a particular power group has sought to explain away its loss of power – or rather, its loss of the Presidency, as it still holds a predominance of institutional power – by creation of a myth ..."
"... So at worst, "the Russians" are accused of revealing some relatively minor facts concerning the Hillary Clinton campaign. Big deal. ..."
"... Donald Trump is not particularly articulate, navigating through the language with a small repetitive vocabulary, but what he said at his Helsinki press conference was honest and even brave. As the hounds bay for his blood, he quite correctly refused to endorse the "findings" of US intelligence agencies, fourteen years after the same agencies "found" that Iraq was bursting with weapons of mass destruction. How in the world could anyone expect anything else? ..."
"... In short, the only chance to end the nuclear war threat may depend on support for Trump from Israel and the Pentagon! ..."
"... The hysterical neoliberal globalists seem to have ruled out any other possibility – and perhaps this one too. ..."
"... This is a frightening, accurate commentary on what we face as a result of an unaccountable power structure resorting to any and all means to retain power which, if this structure continues to exercise it, will lead to our extinction. ..."
"... In the establishment, it's not dementia as such, it's just serving the highest bidder. You can accuse only the elites of dementia: they forgot that to enjoy the fruits of your thievery you have to be alive. ..."
"... Thank you, this is an excellent summary of the situation right now. It's worth noting too just how disconnected the establishment is from the wider public. They have enormous financial resources and access to the entire legacy media but seem to have almost no real base of support. ..."
"... It's dangerous to underestimate an enemy. The useful idiot footsoldiers, screaming in mindless herd instinct, are one thing. The people behind them – the Koch brothers, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, others – there is nothing at all mindless or demented about them. ..."
"... Barbara Hinckley Sheldon Goldman, American Politics and Government, Glenview Ill.,1990 describes how the USA weapons industry skillfully prevents that spending on useless weapons deminishes. The history of the later Roman empire, the army in control. ..."
Jul 20, 2018 | www.unz.com

Where to begin to analyze the madness of mainstream media in reaction to the Trump-Putin meeting in Helsinki? By focusing on the individual, psychology has neglected the problem of mass insanity, which has now overwhelmed the United States establishment, its mass media and most of its copycat European subsidiaries. The individuals may be sane, but as a herd they are ready to leap off the cliff.

For the past two years, a particular power group has sought to explain away its loss of power – or rather, its loss of the Presidency, as it still holds a predominance of institutional power – by creation of a myth. Mainstream media is known for its herd behavior, and in this case the editors, commentators, journalists have talked themselves into a story that initially they themselves could hardly take seriously.

Donald Trump was elected by Russia ?

On the face of it, this is preposterous. Okay, the United States can manage to rig elections in Honduras, or Serbia, or even Ukraine, but the United States is a bit too big and complex to leave the choice of the Presidency to a barrage of electronic messages totally unread by most voters. If this were so, Russia wouldn't need to try to "undermine our democracy". It would mean that our democracy was already undermined, in tatters, dead. A standing corpse ready to be knocked over by a tweet.

Even if, as is alleged without evidence, an army of Russian bots (even bigger than the notorious Israeli army of bots) was besieging social media with its nefarious slanders against poor innocent Hillary Clinton, this could determine an election only in a vacuum, with no other influences in the field. But there was a lot of other stuff going on in the 2016 election, some for Trump and some for Hillary, and Hillary herself scored a crucial own goal by denigrating millions of Americans as "deplorables" because they didn't fit into her identity politics constituencies.

The Russians could do nothing to build support for Trump, and there is not a hint of evidence that they tried. They might have done something to harm Hillary, because there was so much there: the private server emails, the Clinton foundation, the murder of Moammer Gaddafi, the call for a no-fly zone in Syria they didn't have to invent it. It was there. So was the hanky panky at the Democratic National Committee, on which the Clintonite accusations focus, perhaps to cause everyone to forget much worse things.

When you come to think of it, the DNC scandal focused on Debbie Wasserman Schultz, not on Hillary herself. Screaming about "Russian hacking the DNC" has been a distraction from much more serious accusations against Hillary Clinton. Bernie Sanders supporters didn't need those "revelations" to make them stop loving Hillary or even to discover that the DNC was working against Bernie. It was always perfectly obvious.

So at worst, "the Russians" are accused of revealing some relatively minor facts concerning the Hillary Clinton campaign. Big deal.

But that is enough, after two years of fakery, to send the establishment into a frenzy of accusations of "treason" when Trump does what he said he would do while campaigning, try to normalize relations with Russia.

This screaming comes not only from the US mainstream, but also from that European elite which has been housebroken for seventy years as obedient poodles, dachshunds or corgis in the American menagerie, via intense vetting by US trans-Atlantic "cooperation" associations. They have based their careers on the illusion of sharing the world empire by following U.S. whims in the Middle East and transforming the mission of their armed forces from defense into foreign intervention units of NATO under U.S. command. Having not thought seriously about the implications of this for over half a century, they panic at the suggestion of being left to themselves.

The Western elite is now suffering from self-inflicted dementia.

Donald Trump is not particularly articulate, navigating through the language with a small repetitive vocabulary, but what he said at his Helsinki press conference was honest and even brave. As the hounds bay for his blood, he quite correctly refused to endorse the "findings" of US intelligence agencies, fourteen years after the same agencies "found" that Iraq was bursting with weapons of mass destruction. How in the world could anyone expect anything else?

But for the mainstream media, "the story" at the Helsinki summit, even the only story, was Trump's reaction to the, er, trumped up charges of Russian interference in our democracy. Were you or were you not elected thanks to Russian hackers? All they wanted was a yes or no answer. Which could not possibly be yes. So they could write their reports in advance.

Anyone who has frequented mainstream journalists, especially those who cover the "big stories" on international affairs, is aware of their obligatory conformism, with few exceptions. To get the job, one must have important "sources", meaning government spokesmen who are willing to tell you what "the story" is, often without being identified. Once they know what "the story" is, competition sets in: competition as to how to tell it. That leads to an escalation of rhetoric, variations on the theme: "The President has betrayed our great country to the Russian enemy. Treason!"

This demented chorus on "Russian hacking" prevented mainstream media from even doing their job. Not even mentioning, much less analyzing, any of the real issues at the summit. To find analysis, one must go on line, away from the official fake news to independent reporting. For example, "the Moon of Alabama" site offers an intelligent interpretation of the Trump strategy , which sounds infinitely more plausible than "the story". In short, Trump is trying to woo Russia away from China, in a reverse version of Kissinger's strategy forty years ago to woo China away from Russia, thus avoiding a continental alliance against the United States. This may not work because the United States has proven so untrustworthy that the cautious Russians are highly unlikely to abandon their alliance with China for shadows. But it makes perfect sense as an explanation of Trump's policy, unlike the caterwauling we've been hearing from Senators and talking heads on CNN.

Those people seem to have no idea of what diplomacy is about. They cannot conceive of agreements that would be beneficial to both sides. No, it's got to be a zero sum game, winner take all. If they win, we lose, and vice versa.

They also have no idea of the harm to both sides if they do not agree. They have no project, no strategy. Just hate Trump.

He seems totally isolated, and every morning I look at the news to see if he has been assassinated yet.

It is unimaginable for our Manichean moralists that Putin might also be under fire at home for failing to chide the American president for U.S. violations of human rights in Guantanamo, murderous drone strikes against defenseless citizens throughout the Middle East, the destruction of Libya in violation of the UN mandate, interference in the elections of countless countries by government-financed "non-governmental organizations" (the National Endowment of Democracy), worldwide electronic spying, invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, not to mention the world's greatest prison population and regular massacres of school children. But the diplomatic Russians know how to be polite.

Still, if Trump actually makes a "deal", there may be losers – neither the U.S. nor Russia but third parties. When two great powers reach agreement, it is often at somebody else's expense. The West Europeans are afraid it will be them, but such fears are groundless. All Putin wants is normal relations with the West, which is not much to ask.

Rather, candidate number one for paying the price are the Palestinians, or even Iran, in marginal ways. At the press conference, asked about possible areas of cooperation between the two nuclear powers, Trump suggested that the two could agree on helping Israel:

"We both spoke with Bibi Netanyahu. They would like to do certain things with respect to Syria, having to do with the safety of Israel. In that respect, we absolutely would like to work in order to help Israel. Israel will be working with us. So both countries would work jointly."

In political terms, Trump knows where political power lies, and is counting on the influence of the pro-Israel lobby, which recognizes the defeat in Syria and the rising influence of Russia, to save him from the liberal imperialists – a daring bet, but he does not have much choice.

On another subject, Trump said that "our militaries" get along with the Russians "better than our politicians". This is another daring bet, on military realism that could somehow neutralize military industrial congressional complex lobbying for more and more weapons.

In short, the only chance to end the nuclear war threat may depend on support for Trump from Israel and the Pentagon!

The hysterical neoliberal globalists seem to have ruled out any other possibility – and perhaps this one too.

"Constructive dialogue between the United States and Russia forwards the opportunity to open new pathways toward peace and stability in our world" Trump declared "I would rather take a political risk in pursuit of peace than to risk peace in pursuit of politics."

That is more than his political enemies can claim.


exiled off mainstreet , says: July 20, 2018 at 7:02 am GMT

This is a frightening, accurate commentary on what we face as a result of an unaccountable power structure resorting to any and all means to retain power which, if this structure continues to exercise it, will lead to our extinction.

AnonFromTN , says: July 22, 2018 at 3:30 am GMT

In the establishment, it's not dementia as such, it's just serving the highest bidder. You can accuse only the elites of dementia: they forgot that to enjoy the fruits of your thievery you have to be alive. If only they die, it would be a great service to the humanity. Unfortunately, the way things go, they might take us all with them.

Cyrano , says: July 22, 2018 at 8:42 am GMT

This mass hysteria over a country hostile to both democracy and gay rights (it's hard to tell which one is worse) has been seen in the west before. It's very reminiscent of the lead-up to Iraq war in 2003. I mean what's next? Are they gonna accuse Russia of having WMD's too?

They are pretty good at providing false evidence of WMD's, I wouldn't be surprised if they stage another presentation of evidence of Russian WMD's at UN, complete with satellite images of mobile trucks equipped with Uranium enrichment technology and all that.

That Nikki Halley can be quite persuasive, you know. I just hope that the world doesn't buy that BS again. Russia having WMD's? That's preposterous. They tricked us the last time, I hope that the people have learned their lesson – not to trust them anymore.

Cagey Beast , says: July 22, 2018 at 11:18 am GMT

Thank you, this is an excellent summary of the situation right now. It's worth noting too just how disconnected the establishment is from the wider public. They have enormous financial resources and access to the entire legacy media but seem to have almost no real base of support. Remember how the Never Trumpers had no one more prominent and well-known than Evan McMullan (!!) to run as their candidate? Note too the tiny number of views the YouTube videos of the Aspen Institute get: https://www.youtube.com/user/AspenInstitute/videos .

On its own, these things aren't conclusive proof but together they add up. The Aspen Institute crowd is an almost entirely self-contained subculture. They seem to have no base of support, beyond their stacks of money, job titles and the power that come with the various offices they hold. That's probably why they can never stop calling their opponents "populists" or why Bill Kristol keeps tweeting about encountering scrappy shoeshine boys who shout "give Trump hell, Mr Kristol!" as he goes about his urban peregrinations.

Anonymous , [115] Disclaimer says: July 22, 2018 at 11:54 am GMT

OT

Diana Johnstone is not alone. Others on the alt-Left are starting to wake up, too. This is Joaquín Flores:

People are seeing through dishonesty, and the old language traps are used up and done for. If reconquista is the goal, then we need to have an honest conversation about that. If there's a Latino nation with self determination in the south-west US, or rights 'back' to the south-west US, then let's speak of it in such terms. Because then we'd be looking at a Euro-American nation also. Now of course there's issues of interpenetrated peoples, and identities we carry in our minds in diverse urban centers. But the point here is that we have to have an honest discourse, and stop hiding reconquista sentiments under the rubric of 'human rights'. Because European-Americans don't have right of return to Europe, so the left is promoting what will ultimately be a race war, full scale, if they don't chill the fuck out and back off this disingenuous approach to policy-wonkism on immigration.

The paradigmatic question today is, how is wealth made, and where does wealth come from? What is the balance of trade and debts, and how is that is no longer manageable? The US empire and NATO is no longer manageable. Trump is unwinding NATO. That can't be a bad thing.

https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/07/explaining-trump-to-socialist-liberals-flores/

Fort Russ News is really turning out to be a leading voice of the Third Way movement.

Daniel Rich , says: July 23, 2018 at 4:48 am GMT

Q: " the cautious Russians "

R: I see it this way: " the Russians, who've learned their lessons after first fully trusting their partners "

TG , says: July 23, 2018 at 4:56 am GMT

I hear you, and I sympathize, but this is not mass dementia. The oligarchy that runs the United States was worried that Donald Trump might actually (!!) take some consideration for the national interest of the people of the United States of America. That will never do.

This is not irrational. The screaming, the hysteria, this is the utterly rational, breathtakingly brutal reaction of a ruling elite that has the moral sense of a reptile. And it's working. All of Trump's campaign promises to stop wasting trillions on pointless winless foreign wars of choice, and instead spend that on our own country? Gone. And so much else besides.

It's dangerous to underestimate an enemy. The useful idiot footsoldiers, screaming in mindless herd instinct, are one thing. The people behind them – the Koch brothers, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, others – there is nothing at all mindless or demented about them.

EliteCommInc. , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:04 am GMT

In my view, at the moment the deed is done. The president signed onto the report acknowledged the he accepts the report has even gone as far to say, he blames Pres. Putin

Another backtrack, just muddies the waters, and mat be acceptable because no one wants to accept the real consequences of a president who has repudiated the one state president he most desired to make a deal with -- the jig is up.

Whether kabuki theater or real gamesmanship –

A threshold has been crossed and uncrossing it is going to be tricky and in my further humiliation for the wh. The analysis here mattered before the president agreed with the report. But when he did, this analysis, becomes moot. Having a chit chat about de-escalating nuclear tensions is quaint in light of the president acknowledging that russia has in fact undermined the US democratic process. This is a serious charge and no amount of changing the subject, crying foul, or pretending it was all a big misunderstanding is going to change that.

I think it would have been prudent for the president to hold fire in Helsinki and read the report and then responded . He did make any of those choices. It matters not how exposed the establishment in wanton eagerness to have their way, wh has embraced the matter. it is on record and . . . oh well. I see merit in maintaining his original position of disbelief -- however, the president did a complete about face -- and there is no question of that or the implications.

Ilyana_Rozumova , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:46 am GMT

Hillary lost the election when she could not walk. she lost a shoe, she was shown in the van, and shoe was thrown after her. And that was arranged by Russians.

peterAUS , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:48 am GMT
@TG

Agree.

Having a title "Mass Dementia in the Western Establishment" and approaching this effort as "mass insanity","demented chorus" etc. is simply delusional. They know exactly what they are doing and, it appears, they are doing it well. The are able to create their own reality.

What puzzles me a bit isn't "them" or their servants (media etc.). It's people in general. They appear to be buying that manufactured reality with ease. In this era of instant communications it's .sobering.

This constant shitting on "them" and their servants is fine and dandy but feels as just a feel good exercise.
Perhaps some effort could be spared in trying to analyze and explain common people approach to all this. The buying, hook and sinker, that manufacture.

Anyone with an average intelligence can, in two hours trawling of Internet, get how false all that is. And, yet, here we are. The same people who can spend hours on social media, shopping and entertainment online can't, for SOME reason, figure all that out.

Easy to blame "them" and media/academia/whatever. Maybe it's time to start passing a bit of blame to people in general.

Not holding my breath.

jilles dykstra , says: July 23, 2018 at 7:30 am GMT

In my opinion, no dementia. Too many careers and institutions are built on continuing hostility towards Russia.

First ECB President Duisenberg's ph d thesis had as title 'The economic consequences of peace', something like that, his conclusion was that demilitarisation was possible economically, when controlled sensibly. Did anyone read 'The Iron Mountain Report', I never quite knew what to make of it, but it also is about if demilitarisation is possible.

Barbara Hinckley Sheldon Goldman, American Politics and Government, Glenview Ill.,1990 describes how the USA weapons industry skillfully prevents that spending on useless weapons deminishes. The history of the later Roman empire, the army in control.

Anon , [122] Disclaimer says: July 23, 2018 at 8:07 am GMT
@Daniel Rich

The Russians are by nature cautious. They are a conglomerate of individuals, many of whom remember times when they would be sent by communist tyrants to a gulag for Wrongthink. Of course they're cautious.

Daniel Rich , says: July 23, 2018 at 8:13 am GMT

H.E. Mr. Putin clearly knows what the USA/West is about – Link to Youtube [03:42]

nagra , says: July 23, 2018 at 8:34 am GMT

How Hillary Clinton could even run for presidency after the murder of Moammer Gaddafi and Libya destruction, in any decent civilisation and society. That's planetary shame and the most important question, not DNC hack or anything else, which just trace in wrong direction.

So, Trump should grow some balls and arrest not just her but Barack Obama as well on the same charges, as war criminals as they are, and prove that he really deserves to be trusted. And sacrifice himself in the process if needed as that would do any honest true US president, and he knew what to expect from such position from the start.

It's not TV reality show, as still it is. All he cares about is his ego and popularity, and he is loosing both.

Israel lobby finally see that they put their money in the wrong bank. I intend to believe more that West, namely USA and UK the most, keeps them more hostage in uncertainty for decades than in some Jewish conspiracy.

Also, I also believe that only Russia can guaranty Israel security and peace in the region.

Sean , says: July 23, 2018 at 10:12 am GMT

In political terms, Trump knows where political power lies, and is counting on the influence of the pro-Israel lobby, which recognizes the defeat in Syria and the rising influence of Russia, to save him from the liberal imperialists – a daring bet, but he does not have much choice.

Saudi Arabia spent 40 billion dollars helping Saddam's Iraq in its war against Iran, the cost of US efforts in the Syria civil war have largely been met by the Saudis. The coming attack on Iran will be as much to please the Saudis as to lock Israel into West Bank Arab expulsion mode. The Israel Lobby will is not pushing Donald Trump, they are playing catch up with him. Trump has already shown with the Jerusalem recognition that he is encouraging Israel in unilateral courses of action.

Cagey Beast , says: July 23, 2018 at 10:42 am GMT
@TG

No, I agree with the assessment in this article and its title: the establishment is dangerously detached from reality right now. Our stagnant and locked-down political culture in the West allowed the "elite" to develop a false sense of security and and certainty. They thought they had things pretty much figured out a few years ago but now they're genuinely panicked.

yurivku , says: July 23, 2018 at 10:43 am GMT

Looking to this circus from Russia, to those insane speaches, insulting caricatures in MSM, I understand the huge amount of rotteness of Western society, mainly its high top part, but not only. Even here in comments (not in this particularly article) the percentage of trolls and brainwashed idiots exceeds all I could've imagined. So I stopped writing here – no sense, I believe that something can change only after the dramatic changes in US/West society and that is possible only after a big war/revolution.
So, I'm afraid our future is vague

Cagey Beast , says: July 23, 2018 at 11:06 am GMT
@yurivku

I think you are right. Over the last four years I have been amazed again and again at how broken the political culture of the West has become. It's only outsiders and newcomers to politics who give me hope. I'm thinking of people like Trump or the new governments in Italy and Austria.

lavoisier , says: Website July 23, 2018 at 11:47 am GMT
@peterAUS

Anyone with an average intelligence can, in two hours trawling of Internet, get how false all that is. And, yet, here we are. The same people who can spend hours on social media, shopping and entertainment online can't, for SOME reason, figure all that out.

Easy to blame "them" and media/academia/whatever. Maybe it's time to start passing a bit of blame to people in general. Not holding my breath.

I fully agree with this sentiment. The only reason the evil bastards who control our society can get away with their treachery is because most of the American people are out to lunch on the most important issues of our time. If the sheeple were to take responsibility to inform themselves of what is happening today they would be able to see the lies they are being constantly exposed to as just that–lies. And then, they could put down the beer and turn off the damn sports channel and get angry at what has happened to their country.

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for ignorant people to remain ignorant.

skrik , says: July 23, 2018 at 12:22 pm GMT
@peterAUS

Maybe it's time to start passing a bit of blame to people in general

Ma-a-ate! Let me give you a quick refresher on "1984:"

1st, the inner party – that's my ccc @ 25.

2nd, the outer party – that's Ike's MI-complex, which I expand to:

The US rogue regime = US-M/I/C/4a†-plex, with dog-wagging-tail, its illegitimate sprog the Zionist/Israeli rogue regime + Js = I/J/Z-plex, all components rife with corruption.

a = academic = econ, psy, leg et al.; 4 = MSM+PFBCs, † = churches

add a few significant stragglers like $ = banksters & ¿ = spies

We can add the -plexes to their main 'allied criminal regimes' and get FUKUSIL.

3rd, the proles in the book are the proles in real life.

4th, 'hate sessions' are mediated by the US/Z-MMH = corrupt&venal Media (aka press, radio + TV, incl. PFBCs = publicly financed broadcasters), Madison Ave., Hollywood etc..

5th, as well as "All politicians lie!" [thanks, but "No, thanks!" to JWHoward], most politicians are a) ccc-puppets and b) traitors to us, we the people and our countries.

Fazit: Even if most proles really were switched-on = fully and fairly informed, their votes would still mean nothing since there is a disconnect [my 5th.] Unless you are thinking 'pitch-forks and tumbrels,' there's nothing effective that we, the people can do. "1984″ is pretty-well exactly our reality, and here is a bit of proof:

The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who *manipulate* this unseen mechanism of society *constitute an invisible government* which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society.

There is a lie in there, surrounding "must cooperate" – it's simply not true – but worse, worst: " an invisible government ." The latter is what is termed 'deep state' tyranny; the foul, un-elected and criminal puppet-string manipulators (part of the 1%) – again, the ccc.

The lie-cloud they choke the sheople's minds with is deliberately 'spiced' with scientifically designed psychological propaganda, and that's what does the majority of dumbing-down damage.

Ta ra! The Bernays haze. Choke on that.

PS Q: Is there any hope at all? A: Apart from hope being hopeless policy, there *could* be a solution, whereby a big enough proportion of the 1%, a decent portion [should such a thing exist] could call a halt to the ccc and its murder-most-foul depredations.

MK-DELTABURKE , says: July 23, 2018 at 12:40 pm GMT
@Cagey Beast

Yup. Furthermore, CIA is organized crime and organized crime is CIA. CIA recruits and runs agents in favored criminal syndicates in every illicit trade: drugs, child sexual trafficking, arms, fraud, bustouts, extortion, money laundering. Their purpose is not to interdict the trade but to control it. CIA manages transnational organized crime to top up their budget for unauthorized clandestine operations, like killing JFK. CIA protects its criminal proteges with their chartered impunity. They call off law enforcement with the magic words national security or 'sources and methods.' If the plan gets exposed, CIA's criminal cutouts insulate the agency from exposure.

RFK knew how it works. RFK junior explained the reason for RFK's focus on organized-crime until CIA whacked him. That's why his book was made to sink without a ripple.

https://popularresistance.org/the-mass-media-will-not-review-rfk-jr-s-book-why/

Evenfurthermore, CIA is the government and the government is CIA. Decades ago Fletcher Prouty showed that CIA's deepest-cover illegal moles are embedded in our own government. Every agency with repressive capacity is infiltrated with focal points, who report to CIA handlers without the other agency's knowledge.

https://ratical.org/ratville/JFK/ST/ST.html

Of course Israel is trying to infiltrate it -- they understand the levers of power.

Assange has got some mighty stinkers in his insurance file. All we can do is hope they're enough to destabilize the CIA Reich that has ruled America since 1949.

Giuseppe , says: July 23, 2018 at 1:01 pm GMT

This screaming comes not only from the US mainstream, but also from that European elite which has been housebroken for seventy years as obedient poodles, dachshunds or corgis in the American menagerie, via intense vetting by US trans-Atlantic "cooperation" associations.

They are CIA assets who do what they're told.

Z-man , says: July 23, 2018 at 1:31 pm GMT

In short, the only chance to end the nuclear war threat may depend on support for Trump from Israel and the Pentagon!

Disgusting, in the case of Izruel, but true.

The hysterical neoliberal globalists seem to have ruled out any other possibility – and perhaps this one too.

Again NEOCONS .

Dagon Shield , says: July 23, 2018 at 2:11 pm GMT

Don't know if the Cabal controls the Homeland but it certainly seems to exert a great deal of its influence and it also becomes apparent that the Crowd has a long history with the Russians as well thus given that, the whole thing appears to be a three ring circus created to avoid being, in all honesty, noticed by the dumbed down bozos who are shouting loudest in the bleachers in time it won't amount to a bag of beans!

AnonFromTN , says: July 23, 2018 at 2:37 pm GMT
@Ilyana_Rozumova

I wonder, were her "speaking fees" from AIPAC and Saudis also arranged by the Russians? Those pesky Russians are everywhere, like Christian God. Did you check under your bed lately?

AnonFromTN , says: July 23, 2018 at 3:09 pm GMT
@Gordon Pratt

I think you are mistaken trying to rationalize the behavior of the political class and their puppet masters. I believe the real driver are not antidepressants, but an obscene greed, which is so blinding that it made MIC profiteers forget that to enjoy the fruits of their thievery they have to be alive.

Finnbar McDougal , says: July 23, 2018 at 3:27 pm GMT
@Michael Kenny

Thank you, Michael, for your very interesting perspective. Considering all the factors, it appears most likely that Trump's apparent groveling was simply the deference an underdeveloped country like the US owes to a strategically-invulnerable great power with superior governance.

Trump probably concluded that he and America have much to learn from Russia's categorically superior human rights performance in all the most comprehensive categories,

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Indicators/Pages/HRIndicatorsIndex.aspx

And from Russia's progressive compliance with a broad range of human rights commitments,

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/ENACARegion/Pages/RUIndex.aspx

especially in comparison with US bad-faith evasion of a disgracefully derelict subset of the core conventions, and failures prompting multiple urgent follow-on inquiries:

https://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/LACRegion/Pages/USIndex.aspx

The summit was a mission civilizatrice for Russia. Trump doubtless knows that the whole world has seen the facts exhaustively documented above by preeminent human rights experts and independent civil society organizations. A bit of humility on Trump's part might help to restore lost US world standing.

Which of the treaty bodies' conclusions and recommendation do you think would do most to mitigate the international disgrace of the USA?

anonymous , [339] Disclaimer says: July 23, 2018 at 3:49 pm GMT

The psychology of the mass of Americans with it's self-righteousness and self-centerdness is really amazing. Just in the last seventeen years the US has invaded or otherwise attacked numerous countries and has caused millions of people to die, become miserable refugees, become orphans and all other manner of evil. Not least of all has been it's creation and patronage of ISIS, one of the most heinous groups in history. Yet Americans have this massive blind spot to the war criminality of all this that their country has committed against the peace of the world. Instead they're being stampeded into some irrational Russia-phobia. It's the US that's been on the march everywhere, labeling those countries that resist it's aggression as being aggressors for being willing to defend themselves. It's all upside-down.

Anonymous , [306] Disclaimer says: July 23, 2018 at 4:51 pm GMT
@follyofwar

(BTW, is this scenario really so far-fetched? After all, Russia did nothing but complain to the UN when the US angels of death destroyed both Iraq and Libya. Could not the same fate soon await Iran?)

You're omitting Syria. It should be pretty obvious that the Russians and the Chinese aren't going to sit back and allow Uncle Scam to destroy Iran when they wouldn't allow it to happen to a much less important country like Syria.

Sofocles , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:10 pm GMT

QUOS VULT IUPITER PERDERE DEMENTAT PRIUS

"Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad"

obviously the Gods want to destroy the so called western man

Jeff Davis , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:28 pm GMT
@Lauri Törni

Feel free to attack me.

TDS is a convenient shorthand for this form of disconnect from reality. That said it is absolutely fascinating to see and puzzle over this geopolitical tectonic event. The old narrative is crumbling, with the result that people like Lauri are fighting desperately to preserve their "sanity", dependent as it is on their tribal submission to the old order and its old narrative (its timeworn lies).

"Science advances one funeral at a time." Max Planck

By which he means that people persist in believing in those "truths" (their belief system) they have held for a lifetime. Only when they die out will a new, revised belief system replaced the old. The same in geopolitics as in science.

Jeff Davis , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:34 pm GMT
@Tulips

"Malefactors of great wealth."

jilles dykstra , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:44 pm GMT
@Anonymous

Assad still is there. The USA was unable to remove Assad, how would they destroy Iran ? The USA has no idea of what Iran built deep in the rocks. Trump screaming in capitals on Twitter against Iran, sign of weakness, in my opinion.

Simple Pseudonym , says: July 23, 2018 at 5:58 pm GMT

American dementia is not new. It is current but after the false flags of almost all of our (US) wars going back as far as the Barbary Pirates, Americans have thrived on being the good guys in an evil world. We are SO GOOD, and the world thinks we are perfect and want to be part of US so much, that any other thought is treasonous.

The fact that getting along with Russia is necessary to NOT create armageddon, is irrelevant to the typical citizen because no matter how wrong, we are blessed and perfect in the eyes of the gawd we pretend to believe in.

So, same old same old

seeing-thru , says: July 23, 2018 at 8:07 pm GMT
@Jeff Davis

Now, now, don't underestimate the Donald! The man has razor sharp brains, is an accomplished mover/rouser of people, and I imagine has oodles of strategic abilities. Look at the facts, hard facts, not at perceptions. No man made tons of legitimate, legal money without possessing some qualities of genius. Never in US history has an outsider come in, overturned the political establishment, taken on the whole pack of media-hyenas, won the election capitalising on the weakness of all his opponents, then tried to do what he said he would do. Who could have imagined that seemingly simple-minded tweets, in simple vocabulary, would be used to beat down the collective might of the massed media? His tweets scored over their collective shrieks and howls! The power of simplicity, no?

This guy is complex, clever, and a very astute strategist. He puts on the rude, crude and buffoonish show to get peoples' attention – and he did get that, did he not? That is called strategy and real smarts.

Yurivku , says: July 24, 2018 at 5:26 pm GMT
@RobinG

UWell, we here in Russia know all this (about Browder) for quite a time. What new did you find? It's just one story in long list of those written and spoken for western idiots like Scripals, MH17, chemicals in Syria and WMD in Iraq, Russian meddling in f-n US elections and so on. Eat it all dummies.

[Aug 25, 2018] Defections from Pax Americana Coming Louder and Faster

Notable quotes:
"... What started as small moments of defiance a few years ago are turning into full-throated shouts of opposition as the US pushes its leverage in financial markets to step on the necks of anyone who doesn't toe the line. ..."
"... What we are seeing is the culmination of a long-term plan by global elites to tighten the financial noose around the world through overlapping trade and tariff structures and weaponizing the dollar's position at the center of global financial interdependence. ..."
"... So, everyday another round of sanctions makes the case against continuing to do business with the US stronger. Everyday another global player speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and makes contingency plans for a world without the dollar at the center of it all. ..."
"... Maas openly accused the US of weaponizing the dollar and disrupting the very foundations of global trade, which is correct, to achieve its goals of regime change in Turkey and Iran. Maas mainly tied this to Trump's pulling out of the JCPOA but the reality is far bigger than this. ..."
"... The Magnitsky Act and its progenitors around the world are a major evolution in the US's ability to bring financial pain to anyone who it disapproves of. Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) laws also into this framework. ..."
Aug 25, 2018 | www.strategic-culture.org

What started as small moments of defiance a few years ago are turning into full-throated shouts of opposition as the US pushes its leverage in financial markets to step on the necks of anyone who doesn't toe the line.

And Trump feeds off this by casting everyone as a leach who has been sucking off the US's breast for decades. It doesn't matter the issue, to Trump US economic fragility is a hammer and every trade and military partner a nail to be bashed over the head to pay their way.

What we are seeing is the culmination of a long-term plan by global elites to tighten the financial noose around the world through overlapping trade and tariff structures and weaponizing the dollar's position at the center of global financial interdependence.

Trump is against that in principle, but not against the US maintaining as much of the empire as possible.

So, everyday another round of sanctions makes the case against continuing to do business with the US stronger. Everyday another global player speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and makes contingency plans for a world without the dollar at the center of it all.

The latest major one was with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. This meeting wasn't expected to provide anything concrete, only vague assurances that projects like the Nordstream 2 pipeline goes through.

But, no breakthroughs on Crimea or Ukraine were expected nor delivered. It was, however, an opportunity for both Putin and Merkel to be humanized in the European media. Between Putin's attending Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl's wedding as well as the garden party photo op background for their talk, this meeting between them was a bit of a 'charm tour' to assist Merkel in the polls while expanding on Putin's humanity post World Cup and Helsinki.

That said, however, the statement by Merkel's Foreign Minister, Heiko Maas, about the need for a new financial payment system which bypasses the US-dominated SWIFT system was the big bombshell.

Maas openly accused the US of weaponizing the dollar and disrupting the very foundations of global trade, which is correct, to achieve its goals of regime change in Turkey and Iran. Maas mainly tied this to Trump's pulling out of the JCPOA but the reality is far bigger than this.

The Magnitsky Act and its progenitors around the world are a major evolution in the US's ability to bring financial pain to anyone who it disapproves of. Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) laws also into this framework.

While KYC and AML laws can at least have the appearance of validity in attempting to stop illegal activity, targeted sanctioning is simply Orwellian.

It politicizes any and all economic activity the world over. Just look at the recent reasons for these sanctions – unproven allegations of chemical weapons usage and electioneering. Recent actions by the US have driven this point home to its 'allies' with stunning clarity.

Why do you think Putin brought up Bill Browder's name at the Helsinki press conference? He knows that Browder's story is a lie and it's a lie that has been used as the foundation for the type of political repression we're seeing today.

The US is blocking the simplest of transactions in the dollar now, claiming that any use of the dollar is a global privilege which it can revoke at a whim. Aside from the immorality of this, that somehow dollars you traded goods or services for on the open market are still somehow the property of the U.S to claw back whenever it is politically convenient, this undermines the validity of the dollar as a rational medium of exchange for trade.

This is why after the first round of sanctions over the reunification with Crimea Putin ordered the development of a national electronic payment system. He rightly understood that Russia needed a means by which to conduct business that was independent of US political meddling.

So, to me, if Heiko Maas is serious about the threat posed by continued use of the dollar in EU trade, he should look to Putin for guidance on building a system separate from SWIFT.

Moreover, Maas' statement didn't go out to the world without Merkel's approval. This tells me that this was likely the major topic of conversation between her and Putin over the weekend. Because a payment system that skirts the dollar is one the US can't control.

It took the Russians longer than they should have to develop MIR. Putin complained about how slow things went because too many within the Bank of Russia and the financial community could be thought of as fifth columnists for the West.

It's also why development of the crypto-ruble and Russia's policy on cryptocurrencies has been so slow. It took Putin publicly ordering the work done by a certain time to get these tasks completed. In the end, it shouldn't take the EU long to spin up a SWIFT-compliant internal alternative. It is, after all, just code.

And that's why so many of the US's former satraps are now flexing their geopolitical muscle. The incentives aren't there anymore to keep quiet and go along. Alternatives exist and will be utilized.

I don't expect the EU brass to do much about this issue, the threat may be all that is needed to call Trump's bluff. But, if in the near future you see an announcement of MIR being accepted somewhere in the EU don't be surprised.

Because what used to be a node of political stability and investor comfort is now a tool of chaos and abuse. And abusing your customers is never a winning business model in the long run. Customers of the dollar will remind the US of that before this is over.

[Aug 24, 2018] The Real Russian Interference in US Politics by diana johnstone

Notable quotes:
"... The Magnitsky Act also condemns legal prosecution of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Browder, on a much smaller scale, also made a fortune ripping off Russians during the Yeltsin years, and later got into trouble with Russian tax collectors. Since Browder had given up his US citizenship in order to avoid paying US taxes, he had reason to fear Russian efforts to extradite him for tax evasion and other financial misdeeds. ..."
"... Russian authorities are still trying to pursue their case against Browder. In his press conference following the Helsinki meeting with Trump, Vladimir Putin suggested allowing US authorities to question the Russians named in the Mueller indictment in exchange for allowing Russian officials to question individuals involved in the Browder case, including Winer and former US ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul. Putin observed that such an exchange was possible under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty signed between the two countries in 1999, back in the Yeltsin days when America was posing as Russia's best friend. ..."
"... In a July 15, 2016, complaint to the Justice Department, Browder's Heritage Capital Management accused both American and Russian opponents of the Magnitsky Act of violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA; adopted in 19938 with Nazis in mind). Among the "lobbyists" cited was the late Ron Dellums (falsely identified in the complaint as a "former Republican congressman"). ..."
"... The basic ideological conflict here is between Unipolar America and Multipolar Russia. Russia's position, as Vladimir Putin made clear in his historic speech at the 2007 Munich security conference, is to allow countries to enjoy national sovereignty and develop in their own way. The current Russian government is against interference in other countries' politics on principle. It would naturally prefer an American government willing to allow this. ..."
"... The United States, in contrast, is in favor of interference in other countries on principle: because it seeks a Unipolar world, with a single "democratic" system, and considers itself the final authority as to which regime a country should have and how it should run its affairs ..."
Aug 24, 2018 | ronpaulinstitute.org

The Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union was ostensibly a conflict between two ideologies, two socio-economic systems.

All that seems to be over. The day of a new socialism may dawn unexpectedly, but today capitalism rules the world. Now the United States and Russia are engaged in a no-holds-barred fight between capitalists. At first glance, it may seem to be a classic clash between rival capitalists. And yet, once again an ideological conflict is emerging, one which divides capitalists themselves, even in Russia and in the United States itself. It is the conflict between globalists and sovereignists, between a unipolar and a multipolar world. The conflict will not be confined to the two main nuclear powers.

The defeat of communism was brutally announced in a certain "capitalist manifesto" dating from the early 1990s that proclaimed: "Our guiding light is Profit, acquired in a strictly legal way. Our Lord is His Majesty, Money, for it is only He who can lead us to wealth as the norm in life."

The authors of this bold tract were Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who went on to become the richest man in Russia, before spending ten years in a Russian jail, and his business partner at the time, Leonid Nevzlin, who has since retired comfortably to Israel.

Loans For Shares

Those were the good old days in the 1990s when the Clinton administration was propping up Yeltsin as he let Russia be ripped off by the joint efforts of such ambitious well-placed Russians and their Western sponsors, notably using the "loans for shares" trick.

In a 2012 Vanity Fair article on her hero, Khodorkovsky, the vehemently anti-Putin journalist Masha Gessen frankly summed up how this worked:

The new oligarchs -- a dozen men who had begun to exercise the power that money brought -- concocted a scheme. They would lend the government money, which it badly needed, and in return the government would put up as collateral blocks of stock amounting to a controlling interest in the major state-owned companies. When the government defaulted, as both the oligarchs and the government knew it would, the oligarchs would take them over. By this maneuver the Yeltsin administration privatized oil, gas, minerals, and other enterprises without parliamentary approval.
This worked so well that from his position in the Communist youth organization, Khodorkovsky used his connections to get control of Russia's petroleum company Yukos and become the richest oligarch in Russia, worth some $15 billion, of which he still controls a chunk despite his years in jail (2003-2013). His arrest made him a hero of democracy in the United States, where he had many friends, especially those business partners who were helping him sell pieces of Yukos to Chevron and Exxon. Khodorkovsky, a charming and generous young man, easily convinced his American partners that he was Russia's number one champion of democracy and the rule of law, especially of those laws which allow domestic capital to flee to foreign banks and foreign capital to take control of Russian resources.

Vladimir Putin didn't see it that way. Without restoring socialism, he dispossessed Khodorkovsky of Yukos and essentially transformed the oil and gas industry from the "open society" model tolerated by Yeltsin to a national capitalist industry. Khodorkovsky and his partner Platon Lebedev were accused of having stolen all the oil that Yukos had produced in the years 1998 to 2003, tried, convicted and sentenced to 14 years of prison each. This shift ruined US plans, already underway, to "balkanize" Russia between its many provinces, thereby allowing Western capital to pursue its capture of the Russian economy.

The dispossession of Khodorkovsky was certainly a major milestone in the conflict between President Putin and Washington. On November 18, 2005, the Senate unanimously adopted resolution 322 introduced by Joe Biden denouncing the treatment of the Khodorkovsky and Lebedev as politically motivated.

Who Influences Whom?

Now let's take a look at the history of Russian influence in the United States. It is obvious that a Russian who can get the Senate to adopt a resolution in his favor has a certain influence. But when the "deep state" growls about Russian influence, it isn't talking about Khodorkovsky. It's talking about a joking response Trump made to a reporter's snide question during the presidential campaign. In a variation of the classic "when did you stop beating your wife?" the reporter asked if he would call on Russian President Vladimir Putin to "stay out" of the election.

Since a stupid question does not deserve a serious answer, Trump said he had "nothing to do with Putin" before adding, "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press."

Aha! Went the Trump haters. This proves it! Irony is almost as unwelcome in American politics as honesty.

When President Trump revoked his security clearance earlier this month, former CIA chef John Brennan got his chance to spew out his hatred in the complacent pages of the New York Times.

Someone supposed to be smart enough to head an intelligence agency actually took Trump's joking invitation as a genuine request. "By issuing such a statement," Brennan wrote, "Mr. Trump was not only encouraging a foreign nation to collect intelligence against a United States citizen, but also openly authorizing his followers to work with our primary global adversary against his political opponent."

The Russians, Brennan declared, "troll political, business, and cultural waters in search of gullible or unprincipled individuals who become pliant in the hands of their Russian puppet masters."

Which Russians do that? And who are those "individuals"?

'The Fixer in Chief'

To understand the way Washington works, nothing is more instructive than to examine the career of lawyer Jonathan M. Winer, who proudly repeats that in early 2017, the head of the Carnegie Endowment Bill Burns introduced him as "the Fixer in Chief". Winer has long been unknown to the general public, but this may soon change.

Let's see what the fixer has fixed.

Under the presidency of fellow Yalie Bill Clinton, Winer served as the State Department's first Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Law Enforcement, from 1994-1999. One may question the selectivity of Bill Clinton's concern for international law enforcement, which certainly did not cover violating international law by bombing defenseless countries. In any case, in 1999, Winer was awarded for "virtually unprecedented achievements". Later we shall examine one of those important achievements.

At the end of the Clinton administration, from 2008 to 2013, the Fixer in Chief worked as high up consultant at one of the world's most powerful PR and lobbying firms, APCO Worldwide. This is how the Washington revolving door functions: after a few years in government finding out how things work, one then goes into highly paid "consultancy" to sell this insider information and influential contacts to private clients.

APCO got off to a big start some thirty years ago lobbying for Philip Morris and the tobacco industry in general.

In 2002, APCO launched something called the "Friends of Science" to promote skepticism concerning the harmful effects of smoking. In 1993, the campaign described its goals and objectives "encouraging the public to question – from the grassroots up – the validity of scientific studies."

While Winer was at APCO, one of its major activities was hyping the Clinton Global Initiative, an international networking platform promoting the Clinton Foundation. APCO president and CEO Margery Kraus explained that the consultancy was there to "help other CGI members garner interest for the causes they are addressing, demonstrate their success and highlight the wide-ranging achievements of CGI as a whole." Considering that only five percent of Clinton Foundation turnover went to donations, they needed all the PR they could get.

Significantly, donations to the Clinton Global Initiative have dried up since Hillary lost the presidential election. According to the Observer : "Foreign governments began pulling out of annual donations, signaling the organization's clout was predicated on donor access to the Clintons, rather than its philanthropic work."

This helps explain Hillary Clinton's panic when she lost in 2016. How in the world can she ever reward her multi-million-dollar donors with the favors they expected?

As well as the tobacco industry and the Clinton Foundation, APCO also works for Khodorkovsky. To be precise, according to public listings, the fourth biggest of APCO's many clients is the Corbiere Trust, owned by Khodorkovsky and registered in Guernsey. The trust tends and distributes some of the billions that the oligarch got out of Russia before he was jailed. Corbiere money was spent to lobby both for Resolution 322 (supporting Khodorkovky after his arrest in Russia) and for the Magnitsky Act (more later). Margery Kraus, APCO's president and CEO, is a member of Mikhail Khodorkovsky's son Pavel's Institute of Modern Russia, devoted to "promoting democratic values" – in other words, to building political opposition to Vladimir Putin.

In 2009 Jonathan Winer went back to the State Department where he was given a distinguished service award for having somehow rescued thousands of stranded members of the Muhahedin-e Khalq from their bases in Iraq they were trying to overthrow the Iranian government. The MeK, once officially recognized as a terrorist organization by the State Department, has become a pet instrument in US and Israeli regime change operations directed at Iran.

However, it was Winer's extracurricular activities at State that finally brought him into the public spotlight early this year – or rather, the spotlight of the House Intelligence Committee, whose chairman Devin Nunes (R-Cal) named him as one of a network promoting the notorious "Steele Dossier" which accused Trump of illicit financial dealing and compromising sexual activities in Russia. By Winer's own account , he had been friends with former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele since his days at APCO. Back at State, he regularly channeled Steele reports, ostensibly drawn from contacts with friendly Russian intelligence agents, to Victoria Nuland, in charge of Russian affairs, and top Russian experts. These included the infamous "Steele dossier". In September 2016, Winer's old friend Sidney Blumenthal – a particularly close advisor to Hillary Clinton – gave him notes written by a more mysterious Clinton insider named Cody Shearer, repeating the salacious attacks.

All this dirt was spread through government agencies and mainstream media before being revealed publicly just before Trump's inauguration, used to stimulate the "Russiagate" investigation by Robert Mueller. The dossier has been discredited but the investigation goes on and on.

So, it is all right to take seriously information allegedly obtained from "Russian agents" and spread it around, so long as it can damage Trump. As with so much else in Washington, double standards are the rule.

Jonathan Winer and the Magnitsky Act

Jonathan Winer played a major role in Congressional adoption of the "Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012" (the Magnitsky Act), a measure that effectively ended post-Cold War hopes for normal relations between Washington and Moscow. This act was based on a highly contentious version of the November 16, 2009 death in prison of accountant Sergei Leonidovich Magnitsky, as told to Congress by hedge fund manager Bill Browder (grandson of Earl Browder, head of the Communist Party USA 1934-1945). According to Browder, Magnitsky was a lawyer beaten to death in prison as a result of his crusade for human rights.

However, as convincingly established by dissident Russian film-maker Andrei Nekrasov's (banned) investigative documentary, the unfortunate Magnitsky was neither a human rights crusader, nor a lawyer, nor beaten to death. He was an accountant jailed for his role in Browder's business dealings, who died of natural causes as a result of inadequate medical treatment. The case was hyped up as a major human rights drama by Browder in order to discredit Russian charges against himself.

In any case, by adopting a law punishing Magnitsky's alleged persecutors, the US Congress acted as a supreme court judging internal Russian legal issues.

The Magnitsky Act also condemns legal prosecution of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Browder, on a much smaller scale, also made a fortune ripping off Russians during the Yeltsin years, and later got into trouble with Russian tax collectors. Since Browder had given up his US citizenship in order to avoid paying US taxes, he had reason to fear Russian efforts to extradite him for tax evasion and other financial misdeeds.

It was Jonathan Winer who found a solution to Browder's predicament.

As Winer tells it :

When Browder consulted me, [ ] I suggested creating a new law to impose economic and travel sanctions on human-rights violators involved in grand corruption. Browder decided this could secure a measure of justice for Magnitsky. He initiated a campaign that led to the enactment of the Magnitsky Act. Soon other countries enacted their own Magnitsky Acts, including Canada, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and most recently, the United Kingdom.
Russian authorities are still trying to pursue their case against Browder. In his press conference following the Helsinki meeting with Trump, Vladimir Putin suggested allowing US authorities to question the Russians named in the Mueller indictment in exchange for allowing Russian officials to question individuals involved in the Browder case, including Winer and former US ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul. Putin observed that such an exchange was possible under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty signed between the two countries in 1999, back in the Yeltsin days when America was posing as Russia's best friend.

But the naïve Russians did not measure the craftiness of American lawyers.

As Winer wrote:

"Under that treaty, Russia's procurator general can ask the US attorney general to arrange for Americans to be ordered to testify to assist in a criminal case. But there is a fundamental exception: The attorney general can provide no such assistance in a politically motivated case ." (My emphasis.)
"I know this", he wrote, "because I was among those who helped put it there. Back in 1999, when we were negotiating the agreement with Russia, I was the senior State Department official managing US-Russia law-enforcement relations."

So, the Fixer in Chief could have said to the worried Browder, "No problem. All that we need to do is make your case a politically motivated case. Then they can't touch you."

Winer's clever treaty is a perfect Catch-22. The treaty doesn't apply to a case if it is politically motivated, and if it is Russian, it must be politically motivated.

In a July 15, 2016, complaint to the Justice Department, Browder's Heritage Capital Management accused both American and Russian opponents of the Magnitsky Act of violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA; adopted in 19938 with Nazis in mind). Among the "lobbyists" cited was the late Ron Dellums (falsely identified in the complaint as a "former Republican congressman").

The Heritage Capital Management brief declared that: "While lawyers representing foreign principals are exempt from filing under FARA, this is only true if the attorney does not try to influence policy at the behest of his client." However, by disseminating anti-Magnitsky material to Congress, any Russian lawyer was "clearly trying to influence policy" was therefore in violation of FARA filing requirements."

Catch-22 all over again.

Needless to say, Khodorkovsky's Corbiere Trust lobbied heavily to get Congress to pass the Magnitsky Act, which also repeated its defense of Khodorkovsky himself. This type of "Russian interference intended to influence policy" is not even noticed, while US authorities scour cyberspace for evidence of trolls.

Conclusion

The basic ideological conflict here is between Unipolar America and Multipolar Russia. Russia's position, as Vladimir Putin made clear in his historic speech at the 2007 Munich security conference, is to allow countries to enjoy national sovereignty and develop in their own way. The current Russian government is against interference in other countries' politics on principle. It would naturally prefer an American government willing to allow this.

The United States, in contrast, is in favor of interference in other countries on principle: because it seeks a Unipolar world, with a single "democratic" system, and considers itself the final authority as to which regime a country should have and how it should run its affairs .

So, if Russians were trying to interfere in US domestic politics, they would not be trying to change the US system but to prevent it from trying to change their own. Russian leaders clearly are sufficiently cultivated to realize that historic processes do not depend on some childish trick played on somebody's computer.

US policy-makers practice interference every day. And they are perfectly willing to allow Russians to interfere in American politics – so long as those Russians are "unipolar" like themselves, like Khodorkovsky, who aspire to precisely the same unipolar world sought by the State Department and George Soros. Indeed, the American empire depends on such interference from Iraqis, Libyans, Iranians, Russians, Cubans – all those who come to Washington to try to get US power to settle old scores or overthrow the government in the country they came from. All those are perfectly welcome to lobby for a world ruled by America.

Russian interference in American politics is totally welcome so long as it helps turn public opinion against "multipolar" Putin, glorifies American democracy, serves US interests including the military-industrial complex, helps break down national borders (except those of the United States and Israel) and puts money in appropriate pockets in the halls of Congress.

[Aug 24, 2018] The Magnitsky Act legislation is based on lies

Notable quotes:
"... With respect to the Browder-Magnitsky Act legislation scandal, people might consider that ongoing, colossal, bombshell story in light of the mentioned 18 U.S. Code § 2384 – Seditious conspiracy: ..."
"... The fact that Magnitsky Act legislation is founded on a massive concoction of lies is unacceptable and, far more importantly, increasingly dangerous and destructive to international relations with each passing day of the coverup. It is of paramount importance that humanity learns the full truth about the Browder-Magnitsky laws scandal – and NOW. ..."
"... Yes, the Magnitsky Act legislation is a crock, isn't it? And the sad thing is that these congressmen know it, but, as Peter Phillips said, they go along because it's all part of controlling the world in favor of these transnational corporations. We just think our votes count! How stupid are we? ..."
Aug 24, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Jerry Alatalo August 16, 2018 at 7:07 pm

backwardsevolution,

With respect to the Browder-Magnitsky Act legislation scandal, people might consider that ongoing, colossal, bombshell story in light of the mentioned 18 U.S. Code § 2384 – Seditious conspiracy:

".. or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States,"

If moral force is deemed a correct legal interpretation, the growing number of men and women becoming aware of the scandal, in the United States particularly and around the Earth generally, could face 20 years of imprisonment. Of course, "by force" in the clause is meant as kinetic or physical force, so people demanding the profoundly consequential truth about Browder-Magnitsky have nothing in to worry about.

Political reality in America reveals that the two-party system is mythical, but actually that Americans are experiencing a one-party structure serving members of the transnational capitalist class – named and described in the recently published book "Giants: The Global Power Elites" by Sonoma State (CA) Professor Peter Phillips (co-founder of Project Censored with Mickey Huff).

Confirmation is found in the unanimous -- total silence over the historic magnitude Browder-Magnitsky scandal of John Brennan(D), Gina Haspell(R), Loretta Lynch(D), Jeff Sessions(R), Ben Cardin(D), John McCain(R), all 535 U.S. elected representatives(D, R and I), Hillary Clinton(D), Mike Pompeo(R), Joseph Biden(D), Mike Pence(R), Barack Obama(D), Donald Trump(R)

The fact that Magnitsky Act legislation is founded on a massive concoction of lies is unacceptable and, far more importantly, increasingly dangerous and destructive to international relations with each passing day of the coverup. It is of paramount importance that humanity learns the full truth about the Browder-Magnitsky laws scandal – and NOW. Reply backwardsevolution , August 17, 2018 at 3:36 am

Jerry – I saw a Youtube video by Professor Peter Phillips a few months back where he outlined the concentration of wealth by these transnational corporations. It was a very good video, and he's right – something definitely needs to be done about these people. They are going to either kill us with war or kill us by ruining the planet. It's like they're addicted to greed and cannot help themselves, almost like a drug addict. We'll have to stop them.

Yes, the Magnitsky Act legislation is a crock, isn't it? And the sad thing is that these congressmen know it, but, as Peter Phillips said, they go along because it's all part of controlling the world in favor of these transnational corporations. We just think our votes count! How stupid are we?

I don't know where it's all going to end, but we'd better start fighting back before these addicts take us all out.

Good talking to you, Jerry.

[Aug 22, 2018] Russians hold as much as 1trillion in USD assets outside Russia that were stolen from Russia in the 90's and number far greater if including all of the FSU. The stimulus to the global and US economy was enormous and created asset bubbles until the great collapse in 2008

Great insight: "Browder who helped facilitate the looting before he was kicked out of Russia and the Magnitsky Act are all part of the efforts to seize or at least contain as much of the loot as possible and keep it from Russia"
Notable quotes:
"... Russians hold as much as one trillion in USD assets outside Russia that were stolen from Russia in the 90's and number far greater if including all of the FSU. The stimulus to the global and US economy was enormous and created asset bubbles until the great collapse in 2008. The current bubble was due to quantitative easing of central banks as the flows from Russia and FSU dried up. ..."
"... Much of this was held in tax havens and then moved to the US after cleaning via shelf companies. Trumps empire was rebuilt with Russian oligarchs/mafia money as real estate was a favorite investment for money launderers ..."
"... Browder who helped facilitate the looting before he was kicked out of Russia and the Magnitsky Act are all part of the efforts to seize or at least contain as much of the loot as possible and keep it from Russia ..."
Aug 22, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Pft | Aug 21, 2018 4:17:31 PM | 28

Russians hold as much as one trillion in USD assets outside Russia that were stolen from Russia in the 90's and number far greater if including all of the FSU. The stimulus to the global and US economy was enormous and created asset bubbles until the great collapse in 2008. The current bubble was due to quantitative easing of central banks as the flows from Russia and FSU dried up.

Much of this was held in tax havens and then moved to the US after cleaning via shelf companies. Trumps empire was rebuilt with Russian oligarchs/mafia money as real estate was a favorite investment for money launderers

During the Ukrainian conflict Putin began an amnesty program asking oligarchs to repatriate these assets by waiving penalties and taxes. He restarted it at the end of last year, hence the need to expand the list of assets to be seized before they fly the coop.

https://nationalpost.com/news/world/putin-tries-to-get-oligarchs-to-send-1-trillion-home-to-russia-as-threat-of-sanctions-looms

Trump may know where a lot of these assets are parked. Perhaps he had been a good informant of the FBI/CIA like his partner Felix Sater

Browder who helped facilitate the looting before he was kicked out of Russia and the Magnitsky Act are all part of the efforts to seize or at least contain as much of the loot as possible and keep it from Russia

[Aug 16, 2018] An authorised version of Nekrasov's movie is available on Vimeo now

Aug 16, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

MAGNITSKIY MOVIE. An authorised version is available on Vimeo here. I urge you to watch it: not only does it complete destroy Browder's case, it is an interesting detective process as the film-maker gradually perceives the inconsistencies and manipulations. Browder's story has been extremely important at setting up the anti-Russia dancing mania : if it's a lie, then what?

[Aug 16, 2018] 'Bill Browder Should Be in Jail' Says Philip Giraldi, Widely Respected Pundit and Retired CIA Officer

Aug 16, 2018 | russia-insider.com

'Bill Browder Should Be in Jail' Says Philip Giraldi, Widely Respected Pundit and Retired CIA Officer The Browder story keeps getting more and more airplay, and it is not complimentary to him. Patrick Fleming 10 min ago | 29 13 Giraldi, one of the most popular writers on the conservative Unz.com , is one of the superstars of the alt-media landscape. He has been outspoken about the pernicious effects of Israel and wealthy pro-Israeli American Jews on American politics. You can see many of his articles on RI here .

This was from a radio interview with Lee Stranahan, formerly of Breitbart, now with Sputnik, the Russian state-owned news agency.

You can listen to the whole thing here. Key quotes below:

Listen to "Connecting the Dots on Bill Browder and Mikhail Khodorkovsky" on Spreaker.

"He's basically been the one who appears on the networks, appears before Congress," "

"He is someone that they've [US officials] decided has to be the spokesperson in terms of what's going on in Russia, and yet he has a hidden agenda as a potential criminal."

"I think the story is growing; I'm seeing more and more references to Browder in a negative way."

"The problem is that we have to get this at a level where Browder is doing his damage, and that's in the mainstream media, places like The New York Times, and also to have some people in Congress begin to speak up and say, 'Hey, what about the Magnitsky Act and everything that we did to provoke a crisis with Russia based on what Browder was telling us?'".

"Once you understand that, you realize that Browder, if anything, should be in jail."


This post first appeared on Russia Insider

Anyone is free to republish, copy, and redistribute the text in this content (but not the images or videos) in any medium or format, with the right to remix, transform, and build upon it, even commercially, as long as they provide a backlink and credit to Russia Insider . It is not necessary to notify Russia Insider . Licensed Creative Commons

[Aug 15, 2018] After everything Germany has done to our country, I think, they should not talk on the issue for another two hundred years

Notable quotes:
"... When Germany starts up talking again about 'negotiating from a position of strength', it should be slapped down as if it had said 'lebensraum'. ..."
"... Washington wants it, because Washington sees the world as existing to support the comfort and entertainment of Americans, but America cannot do it on its own, so von der Leyen is just doing America's bidding with the tough talk – the whole barnyard of European political elites needs to be cleaned out before there can be any hope of better relations, as they are all committed Atlanticists. ..."
"... But when NATO speaks of 'dealing from a position of strength', it means 'you know what will happen if your offer is not as expected'. In the NATO lexicon, there is no such situation as both sides dealing from a position of strength. ..."
Aug 15, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com
Patient Observer August 11, 2018 at 7:39 pm
Lovin' it:
the recent call by the German Defense Minister, Ursula von der Leyen, to engage in dialogue with Moscow only from a "position of unity and strength," Shoigu reminded his counterpart that, while Russia seeks peace, it will not tolerate being coerced.

"After everything Germany has done to our country, I think, they should not talk on the issue for another two hundred years," Shoigu said. "Ask your grandparents about their experience of talking to Russia from the position of strength. They will probably be able to tell you."

Shoigu was to the point.

Mark Chapman August 12, 2018 at 9:23 am
Exactly; it seems it was almost instantly impolite to remind the Germans of their Nazi past, along with their aspiration to achieve their goals through military force. When Germany starts up talking again about 'negotiating from a position of strength', it should be slapped down as if it had said 'lebensraum'.

The EU has to know that it is not frightening Russia with tough talk, and so it may as well cut it out. Russia by itself would squash the EU like a bug if they could not go running to Uncle Sam, and NATO as a whole would have a tough time with China and Russia – it's hard to say who would win, because military victory depends on a lot of things and you can't plan for them all, but the scale of global casualties would be so horrific it would be difficult to call any outcome 'victory'.

Washington wants it, because Washington sees the world as existing to support the comfort and entertainment of Americans, but America cannot do it on its own, so von der Leyen is just doing America's bidding with the tough talk – the whole barnyard of European political elites needs to be cleaned out before there can be any hope of better relations, as they are all committed Atlanticists.

If I were Shoigu, although I cannot fault his actual response, I would have said, "I see nothing constructive will be accomplished here today, so I will leave you to it, for I have drills to conduct and work to do. I'll see you next time".

There's nothing wrong in dealing from a position of strength so long as you are prepared to be reasonable; it merely signifies that you do not have to accept any terms that are offered. But when NATO speaks of 'dealing from a position of strength', it means 'you know what will happen if your offer is not as expected'. In the NATO lexicon, there is no such situation as both sides dealing from a position of strength.

[Aug 14, 2018] Book: RAND DECEPTION: The TRUTH ABOUT BILL BROWDER, the MAGNITSKY ACT, and ANTI-RUSSIAN SANCTIONS

Aug 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

RobinG , August 14, 2018 at 4:25 am GMT

Re. RUSSIAGATE: the 2nd edition of Alex Krainer's book is now available, with new title.

GRAND DECEPTION: The TRUTH ABOUT BILL BROWDER, the MAGNITSKY ACT, and ANTI-RUSSIAN SANCTIONS https://www.redpillpress.com/shop/grand-deception-bill-browder-magnitsky-act-russian-sanctions/

In 2015, Bill Browder published Red Notice – purportedly a true story about his experience in Russia between 1996 and 2005. Upon closer scrutiny however, his story doesn't add up and demonstrably fails to stand up in a court of law. Nonetheless, on the dubious strength of that story, Browder has been able to lobby the U.S. Congress to pass the Magnitsky Act in 2012 which needlessly damaged the relations between the U.S. and Russia. Where he failed in courts of law, however, his campaign of relentless demonization of Russia and of Vladimir Putin has been successful in the court of public opinion in the West. As humanity finds itself on the precipice of yet another great war, what we need are bridges of mutual understanding and constructive engagement, not demonization.

[Aug 14, 2018] Is not it ironic that the neocon and MI6 corrected Browder is a grandson of two KGB agents?

Aug 14, 2018 | www.unz.com

annamaria , August 14, 2018 at 1:24 am GMT

@Sean

" and so Putin immediately issued orders for him to be sadistically murdered "
What an amazing consistency in supporting the Browder/Steele line "Putin did it." Which is understandable, considering the efforts and investment made into the MSM memes. You made a very strong impression that the presstituting MSM is your main source of information.
Here are some excerpts from the honest sources.

"Poisoned Russian spy was close to Christopher Steele consultant:" http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/poisoned-russian-spy-close-steele-consultant-report-article-1.3862516
"Jonathan Winer was not only a point man for the Steele "dossier" at the State Department in 2016 (and Steele dossiers of yore), he was also a father of the Magnitsky Act in 2012. Yes, longtime Senate staffer Winer is the "old friend" Browder credits with envisioning the legislative strategy that culminated in passage of the law. (More recently, Winer is serving as Browder's bulldog-lawyer -- story here.)
"Cardin knew there were problems with Browder's story about Magnitsky's death and yet brought him into Congress to testify to secure the vote. That's suborning perjury:" https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-08-04/magnitsky-trio-pushes-war-russia-new-sanctions

"Litvinenko's circle also included Boris Berezovsky, Alexander Goldfarb, Vyacheslav Zharko, and Akhmed Zakayev, most of whom have received asylum in the U.K. In the 1990s, Boris Berezovsky worked with Mikhail Khodorkovsky and George Soros' International Science Foundation which was headed by Alexander Goldfarb for almost ten years. He was also involved in money laundering millions of dollars through the Bank of New York and the Republic Bank of New York which was owned by Bill Browder's now deceased partner, Edmond Safra:" https://jimmysllama.com/2018/05/07/11191/

– Is not interesting, how so many Browder's connections met an untimely death yet Browder the Scoundrel is well supported and protected by the "deciders." -- See the fate of a DOCUMENTARY about Browder, Magnitsky, and a bloody trail of the dead former employees of Browder whom he used for his very profitable if criminal enterprise.
Alexander Perepelichny" was the key witness who could potentially destroy the scam with highest political stakes on Magnitsky dossier. As Browder responds with "I do not recall" and "I do not know" on any substantial inquiry in the court, the US judiciary could be very interested in hearing Perepelichny. This menace to Magnitsky Act was eliminated one week before the bill passed the US House: on Nov 10, 2012 Alexander Perepelichny was found dead outside his mansion in London."

[Aug 08, 2018] Political War! Washington Goes Full Retard on the Russia Hoax - Antiwar.com Original

Aug 08, 2018 | original.antiwar.com

Political War! Washington Goes Full Retard on the Russia Hoax

by David Stockman Posted on August 08, 2018 August 7, 2018 It's hard to identify anything that's more uncoupled from reality than the Donald's Trade War and reckless Fiscal Debauch. Together they will soon monkey-hammer today's delirious Wall Street revilers and send main street's aging and anemic recovery back into the drink.

Except, except. When it comes to unreality, Trump's crackpot economics is actually more than rivaled by the full retard Russophobia of the MSM, the Dems and the nomenclatura of Imperial Washington.

In fact, their groupthink mania about the alleged Russian attack on American democracy is so devoid of fact, logic, context, proportion and self-awareness as to give the Donald's tweet storms an aura of sanity by comparison.

Their endless obsession with the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian nobody by the name of Natalia Veselnitskaya proves the point. She was actually in New York doing god's work, as it were, defending a Russian company against hokey money-laundering charges related to the abominable Magnitsky Act and its contemptible promoter, Bill Browder.

The latter had pulled off an epic multi-billion swindle during the wild west days of post-Soviet Russia and was essentially chased from the country in 2005 by Putin for hundreds of millions in tax evasion. Thereafter he turned the murky prison death of his accountant, Sergei Magnitsky, who was also charged with massive tax evasion, into a revenge crusade against Putin.

That resulted in a huge lobbying campaign subsidized by Browder's illicit billions and spearheaded by the Senate's most bloodthirsty trio of warmongers – Senators McCain, Graham and Cardin – to enact the 2012 Magnitsky Act.

The latter, of course, is the very excrescence of Imperial Washington's arrogant meddling in the internal affairs of other countries. It imposes sweeping sanctions on Russians (and other foreigners) deemed complicit in Magnitsky's death in a Russian jail and for other alleged human rights violations in Russia and elsewhere.

Needless to say, imperial pretense doesn't get any more sanctimonious than this. Deep State apparatchiks in the US Treasury Department get to try Russian citizens in absentia and without due process for vaguely worded crimes under American law that were allegedly committed in Russia, and then to seize their property and persons when involved in any act of global commerce where Washington can browbeat local satrapies and "allies" into cooperation!

Only in an imperial capital steeped in self-conferred entitlement to function as global hegemon would such a preposterous extraterritorial arrangement be even thinkable. After all, what happens to Russians in Russian prisons is absolutely none of Washington's business – nor by any stretch of the imagination does it pose any threat whatsoever to America's homeland security.

So the irony of the Trump Tower nothingburger is that the alleged Russian agent was here fighting Washington's meddling in Russia , not hooking up with Trump's campaign to further a Kremlin plot to attack American democracy.

You could properly call this a case of the pot calling the kettle black, but Imperial Washington and its shills among the ranks of Dem politicians and megaphones in the MSM wouldn't get the joke in the slightest. That's because Washington is in the business of meddling in the domestic affairs of virtually every country in the world – friend, foe and also-ran – on a massive scale never before imagined in human history.

That's what the hideously excessive $75 billion budget of the so-called 17-agency "intelligence community" (IC) gets you. To wit, a backdoor into every access point and traffic exchange node on the entire global internet, and from there the ability to hack, surveil, exfiltrate or corrupt the communications of any government, political party, business or private citizen virtually anywhere on the planet.

And, no, this isn't being done for the noble purpose of rooting-out the terrorist needles in the global haystack of communications and Internet traffic. It's done because the IC has the resources to do it and because it has invested itself with endless missions of global hegemony.

These self-serving missions, in turn, justify its existence, keep the politicians of Washington well stocked in scary bedtime stories and, most important of all, ensure that the fiscal gravy train remains loaded to the gills and that the gilded prosperity of the beltway never falters.

Indeed, if Washington were looking for corporate pen name it would be Meddling "R" Us. And we speak here not merely of its vast and secretive spy apparatus, but also of its completely visible everyday intrusions in the affairs of other countries via the billions that are channeled through the National Endowment for Democracy and the vast NGO network funded by the State Department, DOD and other organs of the national security complex.

The $750 million per year Board For International Broadcasting, for example, is purely in the propaganda business; and despite the Cold War's end 27 years ago, still carries out relentless "agit prop" in Russia and among the reincarnated states of the old Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact via Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and the Voice of America.

For example, here is a Voice of America tweet from this morning falsely charging Russia with the occupation of the former Soviet state of Georgia.

In fact, Russia came to the aid of the Russian-speaking population of the breakaway province of South Ossetia in 2008; the latter felt imperiled by the grandiose pretensions of the corrupt Saakashvili government in Tbilisi, which had unilaterally launched an indiscriminate military assault on the major cities of the province.

Moreover, even an EU commission investigation came to that conclusion way back in 2009 shortly after the events that the inhabitants of South Ossetia feared would lead to a genocidal invasion by Georgia's military.

An investigation into last year's Russia-Georgia war delivered a damning indictment of President Mikheil Saakashvili today, accusing Tbilisi of launching an indiscriminate artillery barrage on the city of Tskhinvali that started the war.

In more than 1,000 pages of analysis, documentation and witness statements, the most exhaustive inquiry into the five-day conflict dismissed Georgian claims that the artillery attack was in response to a Russian invasion

The EU-commissioned report, by a fact-finding mission of more than 20 political, military, human rights and international law experts led by the Swiss diplomat, Heidi Tagliavini, was unveiled in Brussels today after nine months of work.

Flatly dismissing Saakashvili's version, the report said: "There was no ongoing armed attack by Russia before the start of the Georgian operation Georgian claims of a large-scale presence of Russian armed forces in South Ossetia prior to the Georgian offensive could not be substantiated

The point is, whatever the rights and wrongs of the statelets and provinces attempting to sort themselves out after the fall of the Soviet Union, this was all happening on Russia's doorsteps and was none of Washington business even at the time. But wasting taxpayer money 10 years later by siding with the revanchist claims of the Georgian government is just plain ludicrous.

It's also emblematic of why the Imperial City is so clueless about the rank hypocrisy implicit in the Russian meddling hoax. Believing that America is the Indispensable Nation and that Washington operates by its own hegemonic rules, they are now Shocked, Shocked! to find that the victims of their blatant intrusions might actually endeavor to fight back.

Even then, the Russophobes have been frantically making a mountain out of a molehill. We investigated the Russian troll farm in St. Petersburg, for example, and found that it was actually the hobby horse of a mid-sized Oligarch. The latter had been minding his own business trolling the Russian Internet, as the oligarchs of that country are wont to do – until the US sponsored coup in Kiev in 2014 became the occasion for Washington's relentless vilification of Russia and Putin.

Accordingly, this particular Russian patriot hired a few dozen students at $3-4 per hour who mostly spoke English as a third-language. Operating on 12-hour shifts, they randomly trolled Facebook and other US based social media, posting crude and sometimes incoherent political messages from virtually all points on the compass – messages that were instantly lost in the great sea of social media trivia and mendacity.

Still, there is no evidence that this two-bit hobby farm was an instrument of Kremlin policy or that its tiny $2 million budget could hold a candle to the $200 million per year round-the-clock propaganda of Voice of America, and multiples thereof by the other Washington propaganda venues.

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In any event, turning the Trump Tower meeting into evidence of Russian meddling and collusion actually gives the old saw about turning a molehill into a mountain an altogether new meaning. That is to say, on any given evening Anderson Cooper will be interviewing a lathered-up ex-general or ex-spook admonishing that Natalia Veselnitskaya was actually a nefarious Russian "cut out" sent by Putin to infiltrate the Trump campaign.

Really?

We have no brief for Vlad Putin, but one thing we are quite sure of is that he is anything but stupid. So would he really send a secret agent to Trump Tower – who neither speaks nor writes a word of English and has been to America only once – in order to plot a surreptitious attempt to manipulate the American election?

The fact is, the meeting happened because Veselnitskaya wanted to reach the Trump campaign in behalf of her anti-Magnitsky Act agenda, and to do so used the good offices of what appears to be the Russian Justin Bieber!

Specifically, the offer came to Don Trump Jr. via a London-based PR flack named Rob Goldstone, a music publicist who knew the Trumps through the Miss Universe pageant that was held in Moscow in 2013. Goldstone didn't know his head from a hole in the ground when it comes to international affairs or Russian politics, but he did represent the Russian pop singer Emin Agalarov, whose father was also a Trump- style real estate developer and had been involved in the 2013 pageant.

Said the London PR flack in an email to Don Jr:

"Emin just called and asked me to contact you with something very interesting .The Crown prosecutor of Russia met with his father Aras this morning and in their meeting offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father .( this is) "part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump."

And a very big so what!

For one thing, the last "Crown prosecutor of Russia" was assassinated by the Bolsheviks in 1917, suggesting Goldstone's grasp of the contemporary Russian government was well less than rudimentary.

Secondly, there was neither a crime nor national security issue involved when a campaign seeks to dig-up dirt from foreign nationals. The crime is when they pay for it, and do not report the expenditure to the Federal Elections Commission.

Of course, that's exactly what Hillary Clinton's campaign did with its multi-million funding of the Trump Dossier, generated by foreign national Christopher Steele and intermediated to the FBI and other IC agencies by Fusion GPS.

And that gets us to the mind-boggling silliness of the whole Trump Tower affair. Self-evidently, the dirt on Hillary suggestion was a come-on so that Veselnitskaya (through her Russian translator) could make a pitch against the Magnitsky Act; and to point out that after 33,000 Russian babies had been adopted by Americans before its enactment, that avenue of adoption had been stopped cold when the Kremlin found it necessary to retaliate.

Don's Jr. emails to his secretary from the meeting long ago proved that he immediately recognized Natalia's bait and switch operation, and that he wanted to be summoned to the phone so he could end what he saw was a complete waste of the campaign's time.

But here's the joker in the woodpile. Its seem that Glenn Simpson, proprietor of Fusion GPs, had also been hired by Veselnitskaya Russian clients to make a case in Washington against the Magnitsky Act, and to also dig up dirt on the scoundrel behind it: Bill Browder.

More fantastically yet, Natalia had meet with Simpson both before and after the Trump Tower meeting apparently to be coached by him on her anti-Magnitsky pitch to the Trump campaign.

So if Veselnitskaya was part of a Russian collusion conspiracy, then so was the Glenn Simpson, the midwife of the Trump Dossier!

It doesn't get any crazier than that – meaning that the Donald could not be more correct about this entire farce:

This is a terrible situation and Attorney General Jeff Sessions should stop this Rigged Witch Hunt right now, before it continues to stain our country any further. Bob Mueller is totally conflicted, and his 17 Angry Democrats that are doing his dirty work are a disgrace to USA!

In truth, the only basis for Natalia Veselnitskaya's alleged Putin ties was through Russia's prosecutor general, Yuri Chaika.

And exactly why was Chaika interested in making American contacts?

Why, because he was pursuing one Bill Browder, fugitive from Russian justice and the driving force behind the abominable Magnitsky Act – an instrument of meddling in the domestic affairs of foreign countries like no other. As one report described it:

Chaika's foray into American politics began in earnest in April 2016. That is when his office gave Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher and three other US representatives a confidential letter detailing American investor Bill Browder's "illegal scheme of buying up Gazprom shares without permission of the Government of Russia" between 1999 and 2006, one month after Rohrabacher returned from Moscow.

As it happened, Veselnitskaya had apparently brought a memo to the Trump Tower meeting that contained many of the same talking points as one written by Chaika's office two months earlier.

There you have it.

At the heart of the Russian collusion hoax and the wellspring of the current Russophobia is nothing more than a half-baked effort by Russians to tell their side of the Magnitsky story, and to expose the real villain in the piece – a monumentally greedy hedge fund operator who had stolen the Russian people blind and then conveniently gave up his American citizenship so that he would neither do time in a Russian jail or pay taxes in America.

Spoiler Alert for next part: When both economic policy and politics have gone full retard in the Imperial City is there anything which could possibly go wrong – that might pollute the punch bowl on Wall Street?

Stay tuned!

David Stockman was a two-term Congressman from Michigan. He was also the Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan. After leaving the White House, Stockman had a 20-year career on Wall Street. He's the author of three books, The Triumph of Politics: Why the Reagan Revolution Failed , The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America and TRUMPED! A Nation on the Brink of Ruin And How to Bring It Back . He also is founder of David Stockman's Contra Corner and David Stockman's Bubble Finance Trader .

Read more by David Stockman

[Aug 08, 2018] The Magnitsky Trio Pushes For War With Russia With New Sanctions by Tom Luongo

Aug 08, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

If half of what I have come to understand about the Curious Case of Bill Browder is true, then the "Magnitsky Trio" of Senators John McCain, Lindsay Graham and Ben Cardin are guilty of espionage, at a minimum.

Why? Because they know that Browder's story about Sergei Magnitsky is a lie. And that means that when you tie in the Trump Dossier, Christopher Steele, Fusion GPS, the Skripal poisoning and the rest of this mess, these men are consorting with foreign governments and agencies against the sitting President.

As Lee Stranahan pointed out recently on Fault Lines, Cardin invited Browder to testify to Congress in 2017 to push through last year's sanctions bill, a more stringent version of the expiring Magnitsky Act of 2011, which has since been used to ratchet up pressure on Russia.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/JziUpEPIjxs

Cardin knew there were problems with Browder's story about Magnitsky's death and yet brought him into Congress to testify to secure the vote.

That's suborning perjury, as Lee points out.

Just the holes in Browder's story about Magnitsky's death are alone enough to warrant a perjury charge on him. If you haven't read Luck Komisar's detailed breakdown of Browder's dealings then you owe it to yourself to do so.

I'd read it a few times, because it's about as murky as The Swamp gets. And, still my eyes glaze over.

The Magnitsky Act and its sequel have been used to support aggressive policy actions by the U.S. against Russia and destroy the relationship between the world's most prominent militaries and nuclear powers.

The new bill is said to want to put 'crushing sanctions' on Russia to make 'Putin feel the heat.' In effect, what this bill wants to do is force President Trump to enforce sanctions against the entire Russian state for attempting to do business anywhere in the world.

The new financial penalties would target political figures, oligarchs, family members and others that "facilitate illicit and corrupt activities" on behalf of Putin.

It would also impose new sanctions on transactions tied to investments in state-owned energy projects, transactions tied to new Russian debt, and people with the capacity or ability to support or carry out a "malicious" cyber act.

In addition, if it wasn't clear enough already, that he's no friend of the President, Graham is trying to tie the President's hands on NATO withdrawal, requiring a two-thirds majority.

Now, why would Graham be worried about that, unless it was something the President was seriously considering? This is similar to last year's sanctions bill requiring a similar majority for the President to end the original sanctions placed on Russia in 2014 over the reunification with Crimea.

And behind it all stands Bill Browder.

Because it has been Browder's one-man campaign to influence members of Congress, the EU and public opinion the world over against Putin and Russia for the past 10 years over Magnitsky's death.

Browder's story is the only one we see in the news. And it's never questioned, even though it has. He continually moves to block films and articles critical of him from seeing distribution.

Browder is the epicenter around which the insane push for war with Russia revolves as everyone involved in the attempt to take over Russia in 1999 continues to try and cover their collective posteriors posterities.

And it is Browder, along with Republic National Bank chief Edmond Safra, who were involved together in the pillaging of Russia in the 1990's. Browder's firm hired Magintsky as an accountant (because that's what he was) to assist in the money laundering Heritage Capital was involved in.

The attempted take over of Russia failed because Yeltsin saw the setup which led him to appoint Putin as his Deputy Prime Minister.

Martin Armstrong talked about this recently and it is featured prominently in the film about him, The Forecaster, which I also recommend you watch.

There was $7 billion that was wired through Bank of New York which involved money stolen from the IMF loans to Russia. The attempt to takeover Russia by blackmail was set in motion. As soon as that wire was done, that is when Republic National Bank ran to the Department of Justice to say it was money-laundering. I believe this started the crisis and Yeltsin was blackmailed to step down and appoint Boris A. Berezovsky as the head of Russia.

Clearly, Republic National Bank was involved with the US government for they were sending also skids of $100 bills to Russia. It was written up and called the Money Plane . Yeltsin then turned to Putin realizing that he had been set up. This is how Putin became the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia on August 9th, 1999 until August 16th, 1999 when he became the 33rd Prime Minister and heir apparent of Yeltsin.

So, now why, all of a sudden, do we need even stronger sanctions on Russia, ones that would create untold dislocation in financial markets around the world?

Look at the timeline today and see what's happening.

  1. Earlier this year Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicts 13 people associated with Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian troll farm, for influencing the 2016 election.
  2. Then Mueller indicts twelve members of Russian intelligence to sabotage the upcoming summit between Trump and Putin while the Russia Hacked Muh Election narrative was flagging.
  3. Three days later President Trump met with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki. There a Putin let the world know that he would assist Robert Mueller's investigation if in return the U.S. would assist Russia in returning Bill Browder, who was tried and convicted in absentia for tax evasion.
  4. All of a sudden Browder's story is all over the alternative press. Browder is all over U.S. television.
  5. Earlier this week Facebook comes out, after horrific earnings, to tell everyone that IRA was still at it, though being ever so sneaky, trying to influence the mid-terms by engaging Democrats and anti-Trumpers to organize... In that release, Facebook let it be known it was working with the political arm of NATO, The Atlantic Council, to ferret out these dastardly Russian agents.

And now we have a brand-new shiny sanctions bill intended to keep any rapprochement between the U.S. and Russia from occurring.

Why is that? What's got them so scared of relations with Russia improving?

Maybe, just maybe, because Putin has all of these people dead to rights and he's informed Trump of what the real story behind all of this is.

That at its core is a group of very bad people who attempted to steal trillions but only got away with billions and still have their sights set on destroying Russia for their own needs.

And Lindsay Graham is their mouthpiece. (all puns intended)

That all of U.S. foreign policy is built on a lie.

That our relationship with Russia was purposefully trashed for the most venal of reasons, for people like Bill Browder to not only steal billions but then have the chutzpah to steal the $230 million he would have paid in taxes on those stolen billions.

And the only way to ensure none of those lies are exposed is for Trump to be unable to change any of it by forcing him to openly side with the Russian President over members of his own political party.

The proposed sanctions by the Graham bill are so insane that even the Treasury department thinks they are a bad idea. But, at this point there is nothing Graham won't do for his owners.

Because they are desperate they will push for open warfare with Russia to push Putin from power, which is not possible. All of this is nothing more than a sad attempt to hold onto power long enough to oust Trump from the White House and keep things as horrible as they currently are.

Because no one gives up power willingly. And the more they are proven to be frauds the more they will scream for war.


Skip -> ???ö? Sat, 08/04/2018 - 18:35 Permalink

TrumpHate rises to new heights. Will it work?
July 17, 2018 by Kevin MacDonald

I should also mention Putin's treatment of certain Jewish oligarchs who have attempted to influence Western policies toward Russia (e.g., Mikhail Khodorkovsky). A truly stunning moment in the Trump-Putin presser (all but ignored in the MSM) was Putin saying that Bill Browder and his associates had illegally earned $1.5 billion in Russia ("the way the money was earned was illegal") without paying taxes either to Russia or the United States where the money was transferred. And that he and his associates had contributed $400 million to Hillary Clinton's campaign. While the charges back and forth are impossible for me to evaluate, Browder's firm, Hermitage Capital Management, has been involved in other accusations of fraud. Browder was the main force promoting the Magnitsky Act, signed by President Obama in 2012, that barred Russian officials said to be involved in the death of Sergei Magnitsky, a Browder associate, from entering the U.S. or using the U.S. banking system.

Here the point is that American neocons have been in the forefront of hostility over Putin's treatment of Jewish oligarchs, taking the view that Browder et al. are completely innocent victims of Russian evil. Along with Russian foreign policy, Putin's actions toward the oligarchs is one factor in neocon and hence some factions of the GOP toward Russia. It's no surprise that they are now eagerly joining the hate-Trump chorus throughout the American establishment.

MoreSun -> BigJim Sun, 08/05/2018 - 00:43 Permalink

Regarding Article:

Do we need to know anything else?

"William Felix "Bill" Browder was born into a Jewish family in Chicago, Illinois.

Browder's paternal grandfather was Earl Browder , who was born in Kansas in 1891. [1] He was a radical and had lived in the Soviet Union for several years from 1927 and married Raisa Berkman, a Jewish Russian woman, while living there. [1]

After his return to the United States in 1931, [1] Earl Browder became the leader of the Communist Party USA , and ran for U.S. president in 1936 and 1940. [13]

After World War II, Earl Browder lost favor with Moscow and was expelled from the American Communist party . [1]

Remove all jew supremacists from all positions of power, no matter how small-NOW!

Get It, Read It:

"A History of Central Banking and the Enslavement of Mankind" Stephon Mitford Goodson

https://www.walmart.com/ip/A-History-of-Central-Banking-and-the-Enslave

Hapa -> MoreSun Sun, 08/05/2018 - 02:54 Permalink

Magnitsky film back up on Bitchute:

https://www.bitchute.com/video/kHqYoFm3q2Ll/

Thoresen -> Hapa Sun, 08/05/2018 - 06:50 Permalink

Great film that takes you from Browder the poor defrauded good guy with a hero lawyer Magnitsky, to a bad guy with Magnitsky the long employed accountant who made none of the assertions injected into the Russian -English translations that no one reviewed. But why is this film banned in the West? (/s)

JSBach1 -> Skip Sat, 08/04/2018 - 21:19 Permalink

Not only is Steele part of this shady group but there are ties with Alexander Litvinenko, Boris Berezovsky, Alexander Perepelichny (who all meet thier untimely deaths) around Bill Browder (directly/indirectly)"

As Browder responds with "I do not recall" and "I do not know" on any substantial inquiry in the court, the US judiciary could be very interested in hearing Perepelichny. This menace to Magnitsky Act was eliminated one week before the bill passed the US House: on Nov 10, 2012 Alexander Perepelichny was found dead outside his mansion in London. The police investigation did not bring any tangible result but the theory of "Russian mafia" involved was timely injected into the international media. One month later Magnitsky Act was signed by president Obama

https://off-guardian.org/2018/03/13/fatal-quad-who-is-assassinating-former-mi6-assets-on-british-soil/

MK ULTRA Alpha -> caconhma Sat, 08/04/2018 - 20:30 Permalink

McCain hand carried the Steele Dossier to Comey. McCain was in Canada when MI6 operative Sir Andrew Wood enlisted McCain. Then McCain took the bait, no he was working to take Trump out.

He tried to get out of it in his new book, The Restless Wave.

I've watched McCain for years, I believe he has brain damage from the Vietnam War.

serotonindumptruck -> madashellron Sat, 08/04/2018 - 19:37 Permalink

The documentary has been completely scrubbed from the internet in the West.

As soon as someone posts a link to a download site, the website is shut down within a half hour by US gov intel agencies.

I'm actually surprised that IMDB still has a listing for it. Some of the reviews there are interesting.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6028446/?ref_=rvi_tt

Jackprong Sat, 08/04/2018 - 20:48 Permalink

I can understand repealing Jackson-Vanik because it pertained to how U. S. deals with "non-market economies." Free market mechanisms were introduced in Russia and China since the 1970s so there needed to be changes. However, if there's government corruption in other nation states, how does this rate an act of Congress? Why repeal the law that required annual reviews of trade relations and replace it with normalization of trade only to sanction foreign government officials that have never even had a trial? What about all the financial misdeeds, money laundering, abuse of the banking system that can be traced to Browder, the congressional instigator? How does Graham, McCain and Cardin benefit by derailing relations with Russia over ONE GUY's WORD with a dicey past?

Law

In June 2012, the United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs reported to the House a bill called the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012 (H.R. 4405). The main intention of the law was to punish Russian officials who were thought to be responsible for the death of Sergei Magnitsky by prohibiting their entrance to the United States and their use of its banking system. The legislation was taken up by a Senate panel the next week, sponsored by Senator Ben Cardin , and cited in a broader review of the mounting tensions in the international relationship.

In November 2012, provisions of the Magnitsky bill were attached to a House bill (H.R. 6156) normalizing trade with Russia (i.e., repealing the Jackson–Vanik amendment ) and Moldova . On December 6, 2012, the U.S. Senate passed the House version of the law, 92-4. The law was signed by President Barack Obama on December 14, 2012.

In 2016, Congress enacted the Global Magnitsky Act which allows the US Government to sanction foreign government officials implicated in human rights abuses anywhere in the world.

[Aug 08, 2018] What is left unsaid in the Anglo-Saxon accusations against Russia by Thierry Meyssan

Aug 08, 2018 | www.voltairenet.org

In 16 November 2009, tax specialist lawyer Sergey Magnitsky died in Matrosskaya Tishina prison (Moscow). Immediately, the US Press claimed that he had been in possession of information concerning a State scandal, and had been tortured by the " régime ".

The Magnitsky Act

The death of Magnitsky shut down the legal procedures that had been launched against him by the Russian Minister of Justice. Billionaire William ("Bill") Browder declared in Washington that the tax expert possessed proof that Russian Power had stolen 3 billion dollars from him. Despite lobbying by Goldman Sachs, the US Congress believed it had clarified the affair, and in 2012 adopted a law sanctioning the Russian personalities suspected of having murdered the lawyer. Goldman Sachs, which did not believe the information forwarded by the parliamentarians, hired the lobbying firm Duberstein Group in an attempt to block the vote on the law [ 1 ].

On this model, in 2016, the Congress extended the " Magnitsky Act " to the whole world, requesting the President to implement sanctions against all people and all states which violate individual property. Presidents Obama and Trump obeyed, placing about twenty personalities on the list, including the President of the Republic of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov.

These two laws were aimed at giving back to the United States the role it had assumed during the Cold War as defender of individual property, even though they had no communist rival.

The two versions of the " Magnitsky affair "

As for the Russian State Duma, it responded to its US counterpart by forbidding the adoption of Russian children by US families, and by denouncing the responsibility of US personalities in the legalisation of torture (the Dima Yakovlev Law, from the name of the Russian child adopted in the USA who died as a result of negligence by the parents). President Putin applied this text in 2013, also forbidding ex-US Vice President Dick Cheney access to Russian territory.

The " Magnitsky affair " could have ended there. It seems to be independent of the " Khodorkovsky affair ", exploited by NATO in order to accuse Russia of interference in Western democracies by way of disinformation or " fake news " [ 2 ]. However, the Russian Prosecutor General contests the narrative presented by William Browder to the US Congress.

According to William Browder, his company Hermitage Capital invested in Russia, particularly in Gazprom. He allegedly discovered signs of irregular practices and attempted to warn the Kremlin. However, his resident's visa was then cancelled. Then his Russian companies were allegedly robbed by Lieutenant-Colonel Artem Kuznetsov, a civil servant from the Financial Brigade of the Russian Ministry of the Interior. Kuznetsov apparently seized the property documents during a search, then used them to register a new owner. Lawyer Sergey Magnitsky, who apparently blew the whistle on the embezzlement, was arrested, tortured and finally died in prison. In the end, Lieutenant-Colonel Artem Kuznetsov and " godfather " Dmitry Klyuev were allegedly able to deposit the 3 billion stolen dollars in a Cypriot bank. This is a classic case of theft by the Russian mafia with the help of the Kremlin [ 3 ]. This narrative inspired the seventh season of the Showtime TV series, Homeland .

On the contrary, according to Russian Prosecutor General Yury Chaika, William Browder illegally acquired 133 million shares in Gazprom on behalf of the Ziff brothers, via various straw men. Not only did Browder avoid paying 150 million dollars in taxes, but the acquisition of part of this crown jewel of the Russian economy is in itself illegal. Furthermore, his financial advisor, Sergey Magnitsky, who had developed another scam for the same Browder, was arrested and died of a heart attack in prison [ 4 ].

It is obviously impossible to tell the truth from the lies in these two versions. However, it is now recognised that Sergey Magnitsky was not a lawyer working freelance, but was employed by William Browder's companies. He was not investigating embezzlement, but was tasked by Browder

with the creation of financial structures which would avoid him having to pay taxes in Russia. For example, the two men imagined remunerating mentally handicapped people as front men in order to benefit from their tax exempt status. Browder had much experience with tax evasion – which is why he lived for ten years in Russia with a simple tourist visa, then abandoned his US citizenship and became a British citizen.

These last elements prove William Browder wrong, and are compatible with Prosecutor Chaika's accusations. In these conditions, it seems at the least imprudent for the US Congress to have adopted the Magnitsky Act , unless of course the operation was aimed not at defending individual property, but at hurting Russia [ 5 ].

A leader of the Russian opposition paid by Browder

Alongside the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), Browder abundantly finances the work of a young lawyer, Alexeï Navalny. Thanks to the help of US ambassador Michael McFaul, the young man pursued his studies in the USA at Yale in 2010. He created an Anti-Corruption Foundation in order to promote Browden's version and accuse Putin's administration.

Having become a leader of the political opposition, Navalny and his Foundation directed a first documentary accusing the family of Prosecutor Chaika of corruption. But although the video is convincing at first look, it presents no proof of the facts it relates.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/3eO8ZHfV4fk

Simultaneously, Navalny ordered a second documentary from a Russian film director and member of the opposition about the " Magnitsky affair ". But this journalist turned against his employer during the investigation, which was finally broadcast by Russian public television.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QgK7MlZDuJ8

A spook and an ambassador paid by Browder

Thereafter, William Browder engaged an ex-agent of MI6 in Moscow (1990-93), Christopher Steele, and the ex-US ambassador to Moscow (2012-14), Michael McFaul.

It so happens that it was Christopher Steele who, in 2006 – while he was with MI6 – accused President Vladimir Putin of having ordered the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko with Polonium. In 2016, he also worked – freelance this time – for the US Democratic Party. That was when he wrote the famous dossier accusing candidate Donald Trump of being under the threat of blackmail by the Russian secret services [ 6 ] ; an unwarranted charge which has just resurfaced after the bilateral Summit in Helsinki. We find Steele once again, in 2018, involved in the Novitchok poisoning of Sergueï Skripal – as a " consultant " for MI6, he of course accused the inevitable Vladimir Putin.

The Russian riposte

During the US Presidential campaign of 2016, Russian Prosecutor General Yury Chaika attempted to influence a member of Congress who was open to Russian thinking, Dana Rohrabacher (Republican, California). He sent her a note concerning his version of the Browder-Magnitsky affair. Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya met the son and son-in-law of candidate Donald Trump at Trump Tower, in order to inform them that a part of Browder's dirty money was being used to finance the candidacy of Hillary Clinton [ 7 ].

Thereafter, William Browder became the main source of the enquiry run by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller about possible Russian interference in " US Democracy ". A long time before he became the Director the FBI, Mueller – who officially has no link to the CIA – had been responsible for the enquiry on the Lockerbie attack, which he attributed to Mouammar Kadhafi. Let's remember that Libya never recognised that it was implicated in this affair, although it accepted to pay a compensation to the victims. Above all, Scottish Justice established the fact that fragments of the detonator found on site were placed there by the CIA in order to accuse Libya. Mueller used the meeting of Trump's team with Natalia Veselnitskaya as " proof " of the subordination of Donald Trump to the Russian Intelligence services.

In the USA, Natalia Veselnitskaya represents the interests of several of Browder's Russian victims. She also acted in 2014 on behalf of one of the companies that Browder accused of being connected to " godfather " Dmitry Klyuev. She also raised the question about the manner in which an agent of Homeland Security, Todd Hyman, had transmitted a trial document without proceeding with the usual verifications.

There will be no moment of truth

During the US-Russia summit in Helsinki, President Vladimir Putin proposed that his US counterpart allow US investigators to question those Russian civil servants suspected of interference in the US Presidential campaign, on the condition that Russian investigators would also be allowed to question suspects in the USA. Donald Trump is reserving his answer.

However, when the office of Prosecutor Yury Chaika transmitted the list of witnesses to be questioned, Washington panicked. Not only did Chaika ask to question British subjects William Browder and Christopher Steele if they should travel in the United States, but also ambassador Michael McFaul, lawyer Jonathan Winer, researcher David J. Kramer, and finally, agent Todd Hyman.

Jonathan Winer was in charge of the Lockerbie dossier at the State Department during the 1990's. He is a personal friend of Christopher Steele, and transmitted his reports to the neo-conservatives for a decade [ 8 ].

During Bush Jr.'s first term, David J. Kramer played an important role in the management of the propaganda system for the State Department as well as looking after the stay-behind agents in Eastern Europe and in Russia. After having worked in various think tanks, he became the president of Freedom House, and campaigned on the " Magnitsky affair ". He is today a researcher at the McCain Institute.

Although, so far, nothing enables us to tell which of the Browder and Chaika versions is accurate, the truth will soon emerge. It is possible that Russian interference may be no more than fake news, but US interference (by introduction into the crown piece of the Russian economy as well as via Alexeï Navalny) may in fact be a reality.

In the context of' Washington's unanimous anti-Russian stand, President Trump declines Vladimir Putin's proposition. Thierry Meyssan

Translation
Pete Kimberley
[ 1 ] " Bank of Putin. Goldman Sachs lobbying against human rights legislation ", Adam Kredo, Free Beacon, July 19, 2012.

[ 2 ] " The NATO campaign against freedom of expression ", by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Pete Kimberley, Voltaire Network , 5 December 2016.

[ 3 ] " Foreigner's Investment in Russia Is Derailed by Kremlin's Might ", Clifford J. Levy, The New York Times , July 24, 2008.

[ 4 ] Note from Yury Chaika Office to Dana Rohrabacher, June 2016.

[ 5 ] " Intouchable, Mr. Browder ? ", par Israël Shamir, Traduction Maria Poumier, Entre la plume et l'enclume (France), The Unz Review (USA), Réseau Voltaire , 22 juin 2016.

[ 6 ] " The Steele Report ".

[ 7 ] " Natalia Veselnitskaya Memo on the William Browder & Sergei MagnitskyCase ", by Natalia Veselnitskaya, Voltaire Network , 1 June 2016.

[ 8 ] " Devin Nunes is investigating me. Here's the truth ", Jonathan Winer, The Washington Post , February 8, 2018.

[Aug 06, 2018] What is left unsaid in the Anglo-Saxon accusations against Russia by Thierry Meyssan

Aug 06, 2018 | www.voltairenet.org

n 16 November 2009, tax specialist lawyer Sergey Magnitsky died in Matrosskaya Tishina prison (Moscow). Immediately, the US Press claimed that he had been in possession of information concerning a State scandal, and had been tortured by the " régime ".

The Magnitsky Act

The death of Magnitsky shut down the legal procedures that had been launched against him by the Russian Minister of Justice. Billionaire William ("Bill") Browder declared in Washington that the tax expert possessed proof that Russian Power had stolen 3 billion dollars from him. Despite lobbying by Goldman Sachs, the US Congress believed it had clarified the affair, and in 2012 adopted a law sanctioning the Russian personalities suspected of having murdered the lawyer. Goldman Sachs, which did not believe the information forwarded by the parliamentarians, hired the lobbying firm Duberstein Group in an attempt to block the vote on the law [ 1 ].

On this model, in 2016, the Congress extended the " Magnitsky Act " to the whole world, requesting the President to implement sanctions against all people and all states which violate individual property. Presidents Obama and Trump obeyed, placing about twenty personalities on the list, including the President of the Republic of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov.

These two laws were aimed at giving back to the United States the role it had assumed during the Cold War as defender of individual property, even though they had no communist rival.

The two versions of the " Magnitsky affair "

As for the Russian State Duma, it responded to its US counterpart by forbidding the adoption of Russian children by US families, and by denouncing the responsibility of US personalities in the legalisation of torture (the Dima Yakovlev Law, from the name of the Russian child adopted in the USA who died as a result of negligence by the parents). President Putin applied this text in 2013, also forbidding ex-US Vice President Dick Cheney access to Russian territory.

The " Magnitsky affair " could have ended there. It seems to be independent of the " Khodorkovsky affair ", exploited by NATO in order to accuse Russia of interference in Western democracies by way of disinformation or " fake news " [ 2 ]. However, the Russian Prosecutor General contests the narrative presented by Wiliam Browder to the US Congress.

According to William Browder, his company Hermitage Capital invested in Russia, particularly in Gazprom. He allegedly discovered signs of irregular practices and attempted to warn the Kremlin. However, his resident's visa was then cancelled. Then his Russian companies were allegedly robbed by Lieutenant-Colonel Artem Kuznetsov, a civil servant from the Financial Brigade of the Russian Ministry of the Interior. Kuznetsov apparently seized the property documents during a search, then used them to register a new owner. Lawyer Sergey Magnitsky, who apparently blew the whistle on the embezzlement, was arrested, tortured and finally died in prison. In the end, Lieutenant-Colonel Artem Kuznetsov and " godfather " Dmitry Klyuev were allegedly able to deposit the 3 billion stolen dollars in a Cypriot bank. This is a classic case of theft by the Russian mafia with the help of the Kremlin [ 3 ]. This narrative inspired the seventh season of the Showtime TV series, Homeland .

On the contrary, according to Russian Prosecutor General Yury Chaika, William Browder illegally acquired 133 million shares in Gazprom on behalf of the Ziff brothers, via various straw men. Not only did Browder avoid paying 150 million dollars in taxes, but the acquisition of part of this crown jewel of the Russian economy is in itself illegal. Furthermore, his financial advisor, Sergey Magnitsky, who had developed another scam for the same Browder, was arrested and died of a heart attack in prison [ 4 ].

It is obviously impossible to tell the truth from the lies in these two versions. However, it is now recognised that Sergey Magnitsky was not a lawyer working freelance, but was employed by William Browder's companies. He was not investigating embezzlement, but was tasked by Browder

with the creation of financial structures which would avoid him having to pay taxes in Russia. For example, the two men imagined remunerating mentally handicapped people as front men in order to benefit from their tax exempt status. Browder had much experience with tax evasion – which is why he lived for ten years in Russia with a simple tourist visa, then abandoned his US citizenship and became a British citizen.

These last elements prove William Browder wrong, and are compatible with Prosecutor Chaika's accusations. In these conditions, it seems at the least imprudent for the US Congress to have adopted the Magnitsky Act , unless of course the operation was aimed not at defending individual property, but at hurting Russia [ 5 ].

A leader of the Russian opposition paid by Browder

Alongside the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), Browder abundantly finances the work of a young lawyer, Alexeï Navalny. Thanks to the help of US ambassador Michael McFaul, the young man pursued his studies in the USA at Yale in 2010. He created an Anti-Corruption Foundation in order to promote Browden's version and accuse Putin's administration.

Having become a leader of the political opposition, Navalny and his Foundation directed a first documentary accusing the family of Prosecutor Chaika of corruption. But although the video is convincing at first look, it presents no proof of the facts it relates.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/3eO8ZHfV4fk

Simultaneously, Navalny ordered a second documentary from a Russian film director and member of the opposition about the " Magnitsky affair ". But this journalist turned against his employer during the investigation, which was finally broadcast by Russian public television.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QgK7MlZDuJ8

A spook and an ambassador paid by Browder

Thereafter, William Browder engaged an ex-agent of MI6 in Moscow (1990-93), Christopher Steele, and the ex-US ambassador to Moscow (2012-14), Michael McFaul.

It so happens that it was Christopher Steele who, in 2006 – while he was with MI6 – accused President Vladimir Putin of having ordered the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko with Polonium. In 2016, he also worked – freelance this time – for the US Democratic Party. That was when he wrote the famous dossier accusing candidate Donald Trump of being under the threat of blackmail by the Russian secret services [ 6 ] ; an unwarranted charge which has just resurfaced after the bilateral Summit in Helsinki. We find Steele once again, in 2018, involved in the Novitchok poisoning of Sergueï Skripal – as a " consultant " for MI6, he of course accused the inevitable Vladimir Putin.

The Russian riposte

During the US Presidential campaign of 2016, Russian Prosecutor General Yury Chaika attempted to influence a member of Congress who was open to Russian thinking, Dana Rohrabacher (Republican, California). He sent her a note concerning his version of the Browder-Magnitsky affair. Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya met the son and son-in-law of candidate Donald Trump at Trump Tower, in order to inform them that a part of Browder's dirty money was being used to finance the candidacy of Hillary Clinton [ 7 ].

Thereafter, William Browder became the main source of the enquiry run by Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller about possible Russian interference in " US Democracy ". A long time before he became the Director the FBI, Mueller – who officially has no link to the CIA – had been responsible for the enquiry on the Lockerbie attack, which he attributed to Mouammar Kadhafi. Let's remember that Libya never recognised that it was implicated in this affair, although it accepted to pay a compensation to the victims. Above all, Scottish Justice established the fact that fragments of the detonator found on site were placed there by the CIA in order to accuse Libya. Mueller used the meeting of Trump's team with Natalia Veselnitskaya as " proof " of the subordination of Donald Trump to the Russian Intelligence services.

In the USA, Natalia Veselnitskaya represents the interests of several of Browder's Russian victims. She also acted in 2014 on behalf of one of the companies that Browder accused of being connected to " godfather " Dmitry Klyuev. She also raised the question about the manner in which an agent of Homeland Security, Todd Hyman, had transmitted a trial document without proceeding with the usual verifications.

There will be no moment of truth

During the US-Russia summit in Helsinki, President Vladimir Putin proposed that his US counterpart allow US investigators to question those Russian civil servants suspected of interference in the US Presidential campaign, on the condition that Russian investigators would also be allowed to question suspects in the USA. Donald Trump is reserving his answer.

However, when the office of Prosecutor Yury Chaika transmitted the list of witnesses to be questioned, Washington panicked. Not only did Chaika ask to question British subjects William Browder and Christopher Steele if they should travel in the United States, but also ambassador Michael McFaul, lawyer Jonathan Winer, researcher David J. Kramer, and finally, agent Todd Hyman.

Jonathan Winer was in charge of the Lockerbie dossier at the State Department during the 1990's. He is a personal friend of Christopher Steele, and transmitted his reports to the neo-conservatives for a decade [ 8 ].

During Bush Jr.'s first term, David J. Kramer played an important role in the management of the propaganda system for the State Department as well as looking after the stay-behind agents in Eastern Europe and in Russia. After having worked in various think tanks, he became the president of Freedom House, and campaigned on the " Magnitsky affair ". He is today a researcher at the McCain Institute.

Although, so far, nothing enables us to tell which of the Browder and Chaika versions is accurate, the truth will soon emerge. It is possible that Russian interference may be no more than fake news, but US interference (by introduction into the crown piece of the Russian economy as well as via Alexeï Navalny) may in fact be a reality.

In the context of' Washington's unanimous anti-Russian stand, President Trump declines Vladimir Putin's proposition. Thierry Meyssan

Translation
Pete Kimberley

[ 1 ] " Bank of Putin. Goldman Sachs lobbying against human rights legislation ", Adam Kredo, Free Beacon, July 19, 2012.

[ 2 ] " The NATO campaign against freedom of expression ", by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Pete Kimberley, Voltaire Network , 5 December 2016.

[ 3 ] " Foreigner's Investment in Russia Is Derailed by Kremlin's Might ", Clifford J. Levy, The New York Times , July 24, 2008.

[ 4 ] Note from Yury Chaika Office to Dana Rohrabacher, June 2016.

[ 5 ] " Intouchable, Mr. Browder ? ", par Israël Shamir, Traduction Maria Poumier, Entre la plume et l'enclume (France), The Unz Review (USA), Réseau Voltaire , 22 juin 2016.

[ 6 ] " The Steele Report ".

[ 7 ] " Natalia Veselnitskaya Memo on the William Browder & Sergei MagnitskyCase ", by Natalia Veselnitskaya, Voltaire Network , 1 June 2016.

[ 8 ] " Devin Nunes is investigating me. Here's the truth ", Jonathan Winer, The Washington Post , February 8, 2018.

[Aug 06, 2018] The Magnitsky Trio Pushes For War With Russia With New Sanctions by Tom Luongo,

Aug 06, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

If half of what I have come to understand about the Curious Case of Bill Browder is true, then the "Magnitsky Trio" of Senators John McCain, Lindsay Graham and Ben Cardin are guilty of espionage, at a minimum.

Why? Because they know that Browder's story about Sergei Magnitsky is a lie. And that means that when you tie in the Trump Dossier, Christopher Steele, Fusion GPS, the Skripal poisoning and the rest of this mess, these men are consorting with foreign governments and agencies against the sitting President.

As Lee Stranahan pointed out recently on Fault Lines, Cardin invited Browder to testify to Congress in 2017 to push through last year's sanctions bill, a more stringent version of the expiring Magnitsky Act of 2011, which has since been used to ratchet up pressure on Russia.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/JziUpEPIjxs

Cardin knew there were problems with Browder's story about Magnitsky's death and yet brought him into Congress to testify to secure the vote.

That's suborning perjury, as Lee points out.

Just the holes in Browder's story about Magnitsky's death are alone enough to warrant a perjury charge on him. If you haven't read Luck Komisar's detailed breakdown of Browder's dealings then you owe it to yourself to do so.

I'd read it a few times, because it's about as murky as The Swamp gets. And, still my eyes glaze over.

The Magnitsky Act and its sequel have been used to support aggressive policy actions by the U.S. against Russia and destroy the relationship between the world's most prominent militaries and nuclear powers.

The new bill is said to want to put 'crushing sanctions' on Russia to make 'Putin feel the heat.' In effect, what this bill wants to do is force President Trump to enforce sanctions against the entire Russian state for attempting to do business anywhere in the world.

The new financial penalties would target political figures, oligarchs, family members and others that "facilitate illicit and corrupt activities" on behalf of Putin.

It would also impose new sanctions on transactions tied to investments in state-owned energy projects, transactions tied to new Russian debt, and people with the capacity or ability to support or carry out a "malicious" cyber act.

In addition, if it wasn't clear enough already, that he's no friend of the President, Graham is trying to tie the President's hands on NATO withdrawal, requiring a two-thirds majority.

Now, why would Graham be worried about that, unless it was something the President was seriously considering? This is similar to last year's sanctions bill requiring a similar majority for the President to end the original sanctions placed on Russia in 2014 over the reunification with Crimea.

And behind it all stands Bill Browder.

Because it has been Browder's one-man campaign to influence members of Congress, the EU and public opinion the world over against Putin and Russia for the past 10 years over Magnitsky's death.

Browder's story is the only one we see in the news. And it's never questioned, even though it has. He continually moves to block films and articles critical of him from seeing distribution.

Browder is the epicenter around which the insane push for war with Russia revolves as everyone involved in the attempt to take over Russia in 1999 continues to try and cover their collective posteriors posterities.

And it is Browder, along with Republic National Bank chief Edmond Safra, who were involved together in the pillaging of Russia in the 1990's. Browder's firm hired Magintsky as an accountant (because that's what he was) to assist in the money laundering Heritage Capital was involved in.

The attempted take over of Russia failed because Yeltsin saw the setup which led him to appoint Putin as his Deputy Prime Minister.

Martin Armstrong talked about this recently and it is featured prominently in the film about him, The Forecaster, which I also recommend you watch.

There was $7 billion that was wired through Bank of New York which involved money stolen from the IMF loans to Russia. The attempt to takeover Russia by blackmail was set in motion. As soon as that wire was done, that is when Republic National Bank ran to the Department of Justice to say it was money-laundering. I believe this started the crisis and Yeltsin was blackmailed to step down and appoint Boris A. Berezovsky as the head of Russia.

Clearly, Republic National Bank was involved with the US government for they were sending also skids of $100 bills to Russia. It was written up and called the Money Plane . Yeltsin then turned to Putin realizing that he had been set up. This is how Putin became the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia on August 9th, 1999 until August 16th, 1999 when he became the 33rd Prime Minister and heir apparent of Yeltsin.

So, now why, all of a sudden, do we need even stronger sanctions on Russia, ones that would create untold dislocation in financial markets around the world?

Look at the timeline today and see what's happening.

  1. Earlier this year Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicts 13 people associated with Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian troll farm, for influencing the 2016 election.
  2. Then Mueller indicts twelve members of Russian intelligence to sabotage the upcoming summit between Trump and Putin while the Russia Hacked Muh Election narrative was flagging.
  3. Three days later President Trump met with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki. There a Putin let the world know that he would assist Robert Mueller's investigation if in return the U.S. would assist Russia in returning Bill Browder, who was tried and convicted in absentia for tax evasion.
  4. All of a sudden Browder's story is all over the alternative press. Browder is all over U.S. television.
  5. Earlier this week Facebook comes out, after horrific earnings, to tell everyone that IRA was still at it, though being ever so sneaky, trying to influence the mid-terms by engaging Democrats and anti-Trumpers to organize... In that release, Facebook let it be known it was working with the political arm of NATO, The Atlantic Council, to ferret out these dastardly Russian agents.

And now we have a brand-new shiny sanctions bill intended to keep any rapprochement between the U.S. and Russia from occurring.

Why is that? What's got them so scared of relations with Russia improving?

Maybe, just maybe, because Putin has all of these people dead to rights and he's informed Trump of what the real story behind all of this is.

That at its core is a group of very bad people who attempted to steal trillions but only got away with billions and still have their sights set on destroying Russia for their own needs.

And Lindsay Graham is their mouthpiece. (all puns intended)

That all of U.S. foreign policy is built on a lie.

That our relationship with Russia was purposefully trashed for the most venal of reasons, for people like Bill Browder to not only steal billions but then have the chutzpah to steal the $230 million he would have paid in taxes on those stolen billions.

And the only way to ensure none of those lies are exposed is for Trump to be unable to change any of it by forcing him to openly side with the Russian President over members of his own political party.

The proposed sanctions by the Graham bill are so insane that even the Treasury department thinks they are a bad idea. But, at this point there is nothing Graham won't do for his owners.

Because they are desperate they will push for open warfare with Russia to push Putin from power, which is not possible. All of this is nothing more than a sad attempt to hold onto power long enough to oust Trump from the White House and keep things as horrible as they currently are.

Because no one gives up power willingly. And the more they are proven to be frauds the more they will scream for war.

[Aug 04, 2018] The Strangulation of the Russian Economy in the 1990s Was a Deliberate IMF policy

Notable quotes:
"... if the notion of billions of barrels of proven oil reserves and billions of tons of gold fills your dreams with visions of red-hot cash flow and ice-cold vodka, then Boris Yeltsin just might find some work for you. – Paul Hofheinz , Fortune Magazine, 23 September 1991 [1] ..."
"... the dirty dishonesty of Russia ..."
"... Russia's evil foundation, ..."
"... Washington Post ..."
"... thousands of Americans went to Russia hoping to help its people attain a better life. The American and Western effort over the last 25 years – to which the United States and Europe devoted billions of dollars – was aimed at helping Russia overcome the horrid legacy of Soviet communism, which left the country on its knees in 1991. The Americans, ..."
"... came for the best of reasons. a generous hand was extended to post-Soviet Russia, offering the best of Western values and know-how. ..."
"... any suspension of debt payments would result in the immediate suspension of urgent food aid and that the ships nearly arrived at the Black Sea ports would turn around. ..."
"... primitive beyond belief ..."
"... parroting the political decisions already decided by the United States ..."
"... The activities of the organization are gussied up in sanctimonious prose about aiding the poor and raising the living standards of the third world. Don't be fooled. These bailouts are really about protecting interests of Chase Manhattan, J.P. Morgan, and Fidelity Investments ..."
"... for inexplicable reasons, ..."
"... harshly worded ..."
"... One cannot really fault the youthful democratic movements for this failure. They were amateurs and innocents with a hazy grasp at best of what they wanted to achieve and no grasp at all of how concretely to achieve it. ..."
"... To be sure, there were unsettling reports of shady dealings during the takeovers, but most observers explained them away as inevitable side effects of such a far-reaching transformation. ..."
"... for the best of reasons ..."
"... Americans, who thought their money was helping a stricken land, have been dishonored; and the Russian people who trusted us are now in debt twice what they were in 1991 and rightly feel themselves betrayed. ..."
"... Alex Krainer is a hedge fund manager and author. His book, banned by Amazon in September 2017 is now available in pdf , kindle , and epub formats at the following link " Grand Deception: Truth About Bill Browder, the Magnitsky Act and Anti-Russian Sanctions. " Paperback version is now available here . Alex also wrote one book on commodities trading. ..."
Aug 04, 2018 | russia-insider.com

The Strangulation of the Russian Economy in the 1990s Was a Deliberate IMF policy Alex Krainer Thu, Aug 2, 2018 | 2,796 64 MORE: History

if the notion of billions of barrels of proven oil reserves and billions of tons of gold fills your dreams with visions of red-hot cash flow and ice-cold vodka, then Boris Yeltsin just might find some work for you. – Paul Hofheinz , Fortune Magazine, 23 September 1991 [1]

The foregoing article is an excerpt from Chapter 3 of my book " Grand Deception: the Truth about Bill Browder, Magnitsky Act and Anti-Russian Sanctions ." Part 1 is here . Part 2 is here .

Shock therapy gave Russia one of the worst and longest economic depressions of the 20th century, an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe for a peace time crisis, and a criminally inequitable privatization of public assets. The reasons why things happened this way in Russia generally aren't well understood in the west. Even among better informed intellectuals, the failure of shock therapy is often thought to be vaguely related to some sinister flaw in the Russian society.

It is what Bill Browder characterized as " the dirty dishonesty of Russia ," or " Russia's evil foundation, " which spawned corruption and criminality of staggering proportions. In this toxic environment, the sweet fruits of western democracy and capitalism simply could not grow in spite of the generous benevolence of Russia's western friends.

Such a credulous version of events was never based on any coherent analysis of what transpired in Russia during the 1990s. Rather, it was based on purposeful perception management in the Western media. As late as April 2015, Washington Post provided a good example of this perception management. In an editorial board article, Washington Post informed its readers that in the 1990s, " thousands of Americans went to Russia hoping to help its people attain a better life. The American and Western effort over the last 25 years – to which the United States and Europe devoted billions of dollars – was aimed at helping Russia overcome the horrid legacy of Soviet communism, which left the country on its knees in 1991. The Americans, " write Washington Post editors, " came for the best of reasons. a generous hand was extended to post-Soviet Russia, offering the best of Western values and know-how. " [2]

Indeed, western role in Russian transition is almost invariably represented as generous benevolence. While many among Russia's western helpers did come with sincere and honorable intentions, the whole project, insofar as it was determined by its command and control structure, was simply a massive, bald-faced criminal enterprise.

IMF's policy dictate

When Jeffrey Sachs drafted his shock therapy recommendations, he estimated that for the reforms to succeed, Soviet Union would need financial support of about $15 billion per year for many years. This money was needed for the state to continue administering essential social services like pensions, health care and food aid for the country's population. But while the IMF and U.S. government insisted that Moscow abidingly implement the draconian shock therapy measures, they stubbornly refused to provide the needed financial aid. Sachs also advocated debt relief for the USSR which, before its collapse in 1991 was already $60 billion behind in payments to foreign creditors.

When he advised the Bolivian (1985-1986) and Polish (1989-1991) governments in implementing their own shock therapies, Sachs was able to negotiate a 50% debt write-off for Poland and a 90% write-off for Bolivia. By contrast, Russia would get no debt relief of any kind.

To the contrary, at the G7 summit held in Moscow in November 1991, representatives of the seven leading western powers insisted that Soviet Union had to continue servicing its external debts at all cost, even menacing Yegor Gaidar that " any suspension of debt payments would result in the immediate suspension of urgent food aid and that the ships nearly arrived at the Black Sea ports would turn around. " [3] Moscow's endeavor to comply with these payment obligations completely depleted the government's treasury within only three months' time (by February of 1992).

Sachs later reported that in December of 1991 he held discussions with the IMF urging its representatives to advance the financial support needed for Russia's transition, but they insisted that Russia didn't need any such assistance and told him that they had instructed the G7 accordingly. Sachs found the methodology on which the IMF had based their decision, " primitive beyond belief ," which led him to assume that the IMF was simply " parroting the political decisions already decided by the United States ."

He was right, of course: as we now know, US aid policy for Russia was indeed determined by two key US government agencies: the Treasury Department run by Robert Rubin with Lawrence Summers in charge of Russian affairs, and the National Security Council. [4]

To be sure, IMF did advance some loans to Russia during its transition period, but the amounts in question were too small and came too late to provide any meaningful economic or social relief. In all, between 1993 and 1999 the IMF lent Russia between $30 and $40 billion, a far cry from the $15 billion per year that were thought necessary to support her economic reforms. Furthermore, the bulk of IMF loans were given to the oligarch owned private banks which used them to fund capital flight, bond market speculation and betting against the ruble. [5]

There were further problematic aspects to the IMF loans: in 1995, with hardly any conditions attached, IMF advanced Russia a $6.7 billion loan through its Systematic Transformation Facility. Practically the entire $6.7 billion sum was used to finance Yeltsin's military assault on Chechnya. [6] That operation was a disaster but domestically it served the purpose of distracting the public attention from economic problems and political corruption. IMF's very next loan to Russia was a thinly veiled mission to rescue Yeltsin and his government from Russia's democracy. Namely the Chechen misadventure cost Yeltsin dearly in the December 1995 parliamentary elections and his party suffered a devastating defeat to the Communists.

The president himself had become deeply unpopular. With his approval ratings languishing between 4% and 6%, [7] Yeltsin was in real danger of losing the June 1996 presidential elections, which again risked reversing Russia's transition and nullifying the privatization of its economy.

To avert this, Yeltsin's cabinet hired a team of American political strategists with ties to the Clinton administration to advise his election campaign. As the Americans got to work in March of 1996, one of the first things they realized was that the Russian people were furious about the government's failure to pay state salaries and pensions for months on end. Washington got the signal and the IMF took action: it promptly released a $1 billion tranche of its next, $10.2 billion loan so that Yeltsin could pay all the salaries and pensions his government owed. The loan served the purpose of improving Yeltsin's unpopularity and making the rigged election appear a bit less suspect.

IMF approved its largest, $22.6 billion loan to Russia as late as 20thJuly 1998 as its bankrupt government slid inexorably toward default. The loan served two key purposes: large part of it was a gift to the oligarchs who helped themselves to the funds to convert their hoard of rubles into USD.

Within four weeks they bought $6.5 billion and transferred most of it to foreign banks. [8] Most of the rest of IMF loan was a stealth bailout for western financial institutions which had some $200 billion worth of loans and investments in Russia. The banks feared the prospect of Russian default which would leave them with crippling losses. These risks became even more acute in the aftermath of the 1997 East Asian financial crisis that would engulf Russia in 1998.

In a testimony before the U.S. Congress, veteran investor Jim Rogers characterized IMF's assistance to Russia as follows: " The activities of the organization are gussied up in sanctimonious prose about aiding the poor and raising the living standards of the third world. Don't be fooled. These bailouts are really about protecting interests of Chase Manhattan, J.P. Morgan, and Fidelity Investments ." [9]

In addition to loading Russia up with unproductive debt, IMF also engineered Russia's hyperinflation and liquidity crisis. After eliminating price controls, IMF obliged Russia to maintain the ruble as the common currency for all Soviet Union successor states, giving each of the 15 new countries the incentive to issue ruble credits for their own benefit while fueling inflation for all others. Sachs reported that he strenuously argued with the IMF against this measure but " for inexplicable reasons, " he was consistently rebuked.

The result was a one-year delay in the introduction of national currencies for the former Soviet republics, pushing Russia into hyperinflation and needlessly prolonging its economic depression. At this same time, the IMF engineered Russia's staggering liquidity crisis that made it almost impossible for enterprises to pay their suppliers and workers. Under IMF's dictate, Russian economy struggled along on less than one sixth of the currency required to operate an economy of its size.

The extent of IMF's iron-fisted control over Russian economy was exemplified in a letter from the IMF's representative Yusuke Horaguchi to Russia's central bank chairman Sergei Dubinin . The letter specified the precise schedule of Russia's ruble supply along with " harshly worded " instructions regarding bank credits, the state budget, energy policy, price levels, trade tariffs and agricultural policies. Horaguchi's letter even included a warning that any acts of the parliament contravening the IMF mandates would be vetoed by president Yeltsin. [10]

It is clear that shock "therapy" was little more than a relentless, cruel strangulation of Russia's economy to facilitate looting of her vast industrial and resource wealth . Nonetheless, most Western-published analyses of this episode tended to treat it as failure of good intentions. While lamenting the outcomes and certain questionable practices, most analysts essentially attribute the failure of Russian transition to honest errors, Russia's endemic corruption, and perhaps inexperience in many of the drama's protagonists.

In New York Review of Books, Robert Cotrell provides a typical example: " One cannot really fault the youthful democratic movements for this failure. They were amateurs and innocents with a hazy grasp at best of what they wanted to achieve and no grasp at all of how concretely to achieve it. " [11] Goldman Marshall of Harvard and the Council of Foreign Relations wrote: " To be sure, there were unsettling reports of shady dealings during the takeovers, but most observers explained them away as inevitable side effects of such a far-reaching transformation. "

Naturally, Marshall fails to detail how or where he polled these "most observers," but his message to the readers is unmistakable: move along folks, there's nothing to see here – especially pay no attention to the fact that many of those thousands of Westerners who came to Russia " for the best of reasons ," including Bill Browder , Andrei Schleifer and Jonathan Hay , [12] returned from Russia as multi-millionaires. Financial reporter Anne Willamson , who covered Russia for the New York Times and Wall Street Journal rightly remarked in her Congressional testimony that, " Americans, who thought their money was helping a stricken land, have been dishonored; and the Russian people who trusted us are now in debt twice what they were in 1991 and rightly feel themselves betrayed. "


Alex Krainer is a hedge fund manager and author. His book, banned by Amazon in September 2017 is now available in pdf , kindle , and epub formats at the following link " Grand Deception: Truth About Bill Browder, the Magnitsky Act and Anti-Russian Sanctions. " Paperback version is now available here . Alex also wrote one book on commodities trading.

[Aug 02, 2018] Mcfaul's describes Browder simply as a British businessman. Ignoring possible connection to MI6 and his activities in pushing Magnitsky act

McFaul lies. and that raises question about his connections to intelligence agencies as well.
In no way a regular businessman would lobby for Magnitsky act, using false evidence and blatant lies (for example that Magnitsky was a lawyer; Browder admitted that this is a lie in his court deposition. This was yet another false flag operation with fingerprints of MI6
Aug 02, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Taras77 , July 30, 2018 at 11:42 am

Not sure where this link would fit but here it is:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/putin-wanted-to-interrogate-me-trump-called-it-an-incredible-offer-why/2018/07/26/7bb11552-90d2-11e8-b769-e3fff17f0689_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.a8100ef8e8fd

Article is strong on self-pity and whine-evidently this neocon had a serious case of the vapors when putin made an "offer" to interview him.

It remains to be seen as to the extent of Mcfaul's cooperation with Browder, who he describes simply as a british businessman.

Jessika , July 28, 2018 at 9:35 am

It really is peculiar what's happened to these dimwit Dems. I used to listen to Thom Hartmann and Rachel Maddow when they were on Air America, and their main political positions were for working people. Now, all they do is partisan politics which they don't seem to understand benefits only the Deep State war party.

Incidentally, State of the Nation website, http://www.sott.net , has an article by Alex Krainer, who wrote the book about Bill Browder's crooked dealings in Russia. His book, which was suppressed by Browder first, i think is "Grand Deception", now available from Red Pill Press for $25 (and must be selling well because it's being reprinted). I wrote this hastily but you'll see it on sott.net. Russia's resurgence under Putin is nothing short of astounding.

Also, there is a video on Youtube, "The Rise of Putin and the Fall of the Russian Jewish Oligarchs", 2 parts. I only saw the beginning showing how the Russian people were given state vouchers that led to the oligarchs buying them up for their own profit and plunging Russians into shock therapy disaster instigated by IMF and other US led monetary agencies including Harvard. This is why it is so incredible how Americans receive political "perception control" when the truth is exactly opposite of what they are being told. At least more people are realizing the lies being told about Russia and Putin.

[Aug 02, 2018] Nekrasov's film is fatal to Browder's story.

Aug 02, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

BROWDER MOVIE. A Russian documentary maker believed everything Browder said and started a film to justify him. As it progressed, he discovered anomalies and came to realise the story was false. See here . It is moving around the Net now and it's worth looking for because Browder's story is a primary founding myth of the Putin hysteria. The film is fatal to Browder's story.

[Aug 02, 2018] Trump's nationalistic blather is creating a "base" of people who believe in the godliness of the US. They are in for a very serious disappointment.

Aug 02, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Bill Herschel , 2 days ago

Very, very slightly off-topic.

Much has been made, including in this post, of the excellent organization of Russian forces and Russian military technology.

I have been re-investigating an open-source relational database system known as PosgreSQL (variously), and I remember finding perhaps a decade ago a very useful whole text search feature of this system which I vaguely remember was written by a Russian and, for that reason, mildly distrusted by me.

Come to find out that the principle developers and maintainers of PostgreSQL are Russian. OMG. Double OMG, because the reason I chose it in the first place is that it is the best non-proprietary RDBS out there and today is supported on Google Cloud, AWS, etc.

The US has met an equal or conceivably a superior, case closed. Trump's thoroughly odd behavior with Putin is just one but a very obvious one example of this. Of course, Trump's nationalistic blather is creating a "base" of people who believe in the godliness of the US. They are in for a very serious disappointment.

kao_hsien_chih -> Bill Herschel , a day ago
After the iron curtain fell, there was a big demand for Russian-trained programmers because they could program in a very efficient and "light" manner that didn't demand too much of the hardware, if I remember correctly. It's a bit of chicken-and-egg problem, though. Russia, throughout 20th century, had problem with developing small, effective hardware, so their programmers learned how to code to take maximum advantage of what they had, with their technological deficiency in one field giving rise to superiority in another.

Russia has plenty of very skilled, very well-trained folks and their science and math education is, in a way, more fundamentally and soundly grounded on the foundational stuff than US (based on my personal interactions anyways). Russian tech ppl should always be viewed with certain amount of awe and respect...although they are hardly good on everything.

TTG -> kao_hsien_chih , a day ago
Well said. Soviet university training in "cybernetics" as it was called in the late 1980s involved two years of programming on blackboards before the students even touched an actual computer. It gave the students an understanding of how computers works down to the bit flipping level. Imagine trying to fuzz code in your head.
FarNorthSolitude -> TTG , a day ago
I recall flowcharting entirely on paper before committing a program to punched cards. I used to do hex and octal math in my head as part of debugging core dumps. Ah, the glory days. Honeywell once made a military computer that was 10 bit. That stumped me for a while, as everything was 8 or 16 bit back then.
kao_hsien_chih -> FarNorthSolitude , 10 hours ago
That used to be fairly common in the civilian sector (in US) too: computing time was expensive, so you had to make sure that the stuff worked flawlessly before it was committed. No opportunity to seeing things go wrong and do things over like much of how things happen nowadays. Russians, with their hardware limitations/shortages, I imagine must have been much more thorough than US programmers were back in the old days, and you could only get there by being very thoroughly grounded n the basics.

[Aug 02, 2018] Call to break up Russia by Latvian MP proof of NATO's hostile plans senior lawmaker

Notable quotes:
"... We should not be shy, we should offer tough resistance. Resistance not even to such statements but rather the danger of our country being split up that arises after them ..."
Aug 02, 2018 | www.rt.com

" We should not be shy, we should offer tough resistance. Resistance not even to such statements but rather the danger of our country being split up that arises after them ," said Kalashnikov. The Russian lawmaker also noted that the call to split up Russia clearly contradicted earlier assurances from Western nations that they have no intention of capturing Russian territory and breaking it into parts. He went on to say that it's important for Russia to counter NATO's aggressive plans and not simply trust assurances from aggressive nations.

According to Russian Defense Ministry reports, the first half of 2018 saw NATO conduct 13 large-scale military exercises – involving more than 40,000 servicemen and 2000 units of combat hardware – near the bloc's south-western borders. Russia maintained the same military strength on the " contact line " with NATO, but had to increase their combat ability through more intensive training and the introduction of new, more effective weapons.

Last week Russian defense chief Sergey Shoigu told an assembly of senior generals and officers that NATO countries have never stopped carrying out actions aimed at preventing Russia from becoming an independent player in international politics and geopolitical competitors to the nations of the Western military bloc. He also accused NATO of using all spheres of human activity such as politics, economics and even culture and sports to impose its anti-Russian agenda on as many people as possible.

[Jul 29, 2018] The USA intentionally tried to destroy Russia after the dissolution of the USSR

Notable quotes:
"... This silly article is proof, as if more was needed that what passes for Russia scholarship in the US is little more than politicized group-think. ..."
"... Russia has risen from utter economic, political, and societal collapse (gold reserves, factories, military secrets, science labs stripped bare and shipped or brain-drained out of the country; millions of pre-mature deaths; plunging birth rates) to recover, within a mere 20 years, to the point where the population has stabilized and the nation can credibly hold its own again on the world stage. Infrastructure is being rebuilt and modernized, the military has been restructured and re-equipped, pensions and salaries have risen 3 or 4-fold. ..."
Jul 29, 2018 | www.theamericanconservative.com

John Perry July 28, 2018 at 1:48 pm

"Vladimir Putin rode a counter-wave of anti-Western nationalism to power in Moscow."

Uh, no. Putin came to power at a time when Russia seemed to be falling apart, quite literally. There was war in Chechnya, open criminal activity on the streets, and clear social decay. Putin's popularity begins with his address to the nation after the bombing of the Moscow metro, promising that the government (which he did not then lead) would chase those responsible down and kill them, even if that meant chasing them into outhouses. The relationship between the bombing and Putin's rise is so well-known that the conspiracy theorists who have Jay Nordlinger's ear over at National Review claim that the bombing was a set up by Putin's pals in the FSB, precisely to bring Putin to power.

My wife is Russian, from the city of Kazan in the Tatar Republic (part of Russia; it's complicated), and when we were merely pen pals in 2003 she wrote me what it was like. It was bad, very bad. At one point her entire neighborhood was placed under curfew on account of open warfare between criminal gangs. And of course when we visit the cemetery today one sees the striking spike in tombstones whose date of death is at some point in the mid- to late 90's, when it all seemed to be going to pieces and the government didn't even pay its own employees for half a year.

Today, by contrast, Russians can walk the streets more or less without fear, count on a paycheck, read in the news how their country has sent yet another capsule of Western astronauts to the international space station (because Westerners haven't been able to do that for the better part of a decade, thanks to Bush and Obama), and even find jobs in a successful tech sector (Kaspersky, JetBrains, Yandex, the list goes on).

But, hey, if you want to fantasize that Putin's rise is thanks to anti-Western sentiment, you go ahead and do that.

John Perry , says: July 28, 2018 at 1:53 pm
One other comment, if I may. I share the concern most Westerners have about Russia's seizure of Crimea. But where is our concern about Turkey's 40-plus-year occupation of northern Cyprus, also sparked by internal political disorder on the island? Why is it alright for a NATO country to invade another nation and prop up its separatists, expel the inhabitants of a disfavored ethnic group -- in this case, the Greeks?
Rodrigo Alvarez , says: July 28, 2018 at 6:15 pm
Shame on TAC for publishing this garbage. For one, Putin more or less saved Russia as a sovereign state, it is easy to forget the sorry condition Russia was in at the turn of the century. Without him, Russia would've most likely been dismembered or simply colonized by the West and China. He has performed admirably in the face of massive odds. Russia will still exist in 100 years as the state of the Russian and other native people of its land – can the same be said of the United States? Russia is slowly climbing its way out of the pit of despair created by 80 years of Communism, the United States is crawling into the very same pit.
Cynthia McLean , says: July 28, 2018 at 6:27 pm
I am much more concerned that voter roll purges, suppression of the vote, Citizen's United Dark Money and folks like the Kochs and Addelson are undermining US democracy than the Russians. As for the aggression of military machines around the world, the US wins hands down.
Groucho , says: July 28, 2018 at 6:37 pm
Like Fran my inclination was to bail after the first paragraph but I pushed on.

In the first paragraph Mr Desch lays out his position which is well within the bounds of polite discussion that Russia is a corrupt oligarchy but don't worry because it's an economic and military basketcase.

Where to start?

1. Corrupt kleptocracy. The Russian oligarchy/ mafia was a biproduct of the privatization binge that followed the collapse of the USSR. This evolved under the disastrous Yeltsin aided and abetted by US elites. The case of William Browder is instructive. Putin has taken significant measures to reassert government control and has greatly improved the lot of the average Russian.

2. Political freedom. Putin did not inherit a developed liberal democracy. Russia needs to be judged in the context of its own historical timeline in this regard not compared to western democracies. Do you prefer Stalin, Brezhnev, Andropov? In contrast compare the state and trajectory of US democratic institutions to, say the 1970s.

3. Human rights. Again the situation in Russia vis a vis human rights needs to be judged in terms of Russia's history not against Western nations with a long-standing tradition of human rights and political freedoms. That said, the illusion of political repression is largely overstated. For example Putin is routinely accused of murdering journalists but no real proof is ever offered. Instead, the statement is made again in this article as though it were self evident.

4. Foreign aggression. This is my favorite because it flies in the face of observable reality to the point of being ridiculous. Russia did not invade Ukraine. It provided support to ethnic Russians in Ukraine who rebelled after the illegal armed overthrow of the Russian leaning democratically elected president.That coup was directly supported by the United States. Far from ratcheting up tensions Russia has consistently pressed for the implementation of the Minsk accords. Putin is not interested in becoming responsible for the economic and political basket case which is Ukraine. The "largely bloodless" occupation of Crimea was actually a referendum in which the citizens of Crimea overwhelmingly supported annexation to Russia. Again This result makes sense in light of even a basic understanding of Russian history. Finally, in the case of Georgia Russia engaged after Georgia attacked what was essentially a Russian protectorate. This was the conclusion reached by an EU investigation.

Russia's so-called aggressive foreign-policy has been primarily in response to NATOs continuous push eastward and the perceived need to defend ethnic Russians from corrupt ultranationalist governments in former republics of the USSR. This is what Putin was talking about when he called the dissolution of the USSR one of the greatest tragedies of the 20th century – the fact that, overnight 20 million Russians found themselves living in foreign countries. It wasn't about longing for a Russian empire.

As for the current state of Russias military capabilities, Mr Desch Would do well to read Pepe Escobar's recent article in the Asia Times. Russian accomplishments in Syria illustrated a level of technology and strategic effectiveness that rivals anything the US can do. Name one other nation – other than the US – that can design and build a world class 6th generation fighter jet or develop its own space program. Even Germany can't do that.

This silly article is proof, as if more was needed that what passes for Russia scholarship in the US is little more than politicized group-think.

laninya , says: July 28, 2018 at 7:45 pm
VG1959
"It is in the pursuit of empire that Putin, like Napoleon or Hitler before him, threatens the stability of Europe and by extension world peace."

Ah! ha!ha! Right.

Like Russia with a population of 150 million persons inhabiting a land mass that stretches across 9 or 10 time zones, from the Arctic pole to the Black Sea is chafing for "lebensraum" !?

No, Russia just wants to develop what it already owns. And, trying to do it on the strength of their own efforts (no overseas colonies filling the coffers), on a GDP as Winston, above, has pointed out which is smaller than that some US states. They're focussed, not on grabbing tiny, constipated territories like Estonia. Latvia, and Lithuania (full of Nazi sympathizers), but on bringing back to life those ancient trade routes which are their inheritance from the past (the Silk Road, primarily).

Why not just leave them alone and see what they can do? Those who have been relentlessly picking fault with Russia (and North Korea) might want to put down their megaphones and start taking notes.

What I mean is: pause for a moment to consider that:

1. Russia has risen from utter economic, political, and societal collapse (gold reserves, factories, military secrets, science labs stripped bare and shipped or brain-drained out of the country; millions of pre-mature deaths; plunging birth rates) to recover, within a mere 20 years, to the point where the population has stabilized and the nation can credibly hold its own again on the world stage. Infrastructure is being rebuilt and modernized, the military has been restructured and re-equipped, pensions and salaries have risen 3 or 4-fold.

2. North Korea, in 1953, had been so destroyed by war that no structures over a single story were left standing (and American generals were actually barfing into their helmets at the horror of what had been done to those people). The DPRK authorities, helpless to assist the population, could only advise to dig shelters underground to survive the winter. Yet, 70 years later, under international sanctions designed to starve those traumatized people into surrender, North Korea has restored its infrastructure, built modern cities, and developed a military apparatus able to credibly resist constant threats from abroad.

See: rather than picking nits to find things that are not yet perfectly hunky-dory with the governing structures/systems in those countries, I'm taking notes!!

Because, I'm convinced that if those people (those nations) were able to do what they've done with the time and resources they've had to work with, there is absolutely no reason and no excuse for our rich nations of "the West" to be caught in a nightmare of austerity budgeting, crumbling infrastructure, collapsing pensions, and spiralling debt.

Funny how the English speaking world SO resisst learning something that could actually do us a whole lot of good. I don't know who coined the terms "stiffnecked" and "bloodyminded", but it sure describes us!

connecticut farmer , says: July 29, 2018 at 12:43 pm
"From Moscow's perspective, the events in Kiev in late 2013 and 2014 looked suspiciously like a Western-backed coup."

Gee, ya think? Kinda reminds one of the 1996 Russian election. But, hey, don't broadcast this because, after all, too many people might start, er, noticing.

EliteCommInc. , says: July 29, 2018 at 1:11 pm

"They may be weakened, but their ability to make trouble is undiminished, given their aptitude for cyberattacks."

And if you have evidence that Russia so engaged, the FBI has a place for you.

[Jul 29, 2018] Russians exposed a CIA spook who's implicated not only in Secret Agent Browder's war propaganda

Notable quotes:
"... So Kramer is a good example of how CIA runs the State Department. When a CIA vital interest like impunity comes up, they parachute a mole in to get their criminals off the hook. ..."
Jul 29, 2018 | www.unz.com

HO-LY COWW , Next New Comment July 29, 2018 at 6:41 pm GMT

@anon

Yes indeed, first Britain, and now Russia has pantsed the US too. In a virtuosic dick move, they exposed a CIA spook who's implicated not only in Secret Agent Browder's war propaganda ( http://russiahouse.org/current_news.php?language=eng&id_current=1454 ) but in CIA crimes against humanity -- specifically, 'legal pretexts for manifestly illegal acts."

David Kramer, Tufts/Harvard Political Science/Russian studies, **PNAC** , DoS focal point, then CIA's famous captive NGO **Freedom House** , and a featherbed job at the McCain Institute for Freedom, Democracy, and Abandoning Thousands of MIAs in Vietnam to Die Slow Agonizing Deaths in Penal Camps.

Here he is talking to his co-conspirator Robert Otto, "Only idiots like Kerry think we have common interests in Syria."

https://freeworld556.wordpress.com/2017/07/12/us-state-department-official-robert-otto-got-hacked/

Needless to say, Kramer wouldn't know a human right from a bar of soap. He's a knuckledragger. CIA sent Kramer to DRL when Alfreda Bikowsky got her tit caught in the crimes-against-humanity wringer for systematic and widespread torture.

The US was five years late reporting to the Committee Against Torture and got a mind-boggling eight (8) follow-on inquiries for urgent derogations of non-derogable rights. So Kramer had to think fast and make up some bullshit why simulated live burial, object rape, death by dryboard suffocation, and penis-slitting is not torture. Kramer is not the brightest bulb, but that's not a hard job. During the Bush administration all the delegation did was say, "The US does not Torture," robotically over and over.

So Kramer is a good example of how CIA runs the State Department. When a CIA vital interest like impunity comes up, they parachute a mole in to get their criminals off the hook.

[Jul 28, 2018] 'He was not killed, he died' Kremlin critic's Magnitsky movie premiers in US, exposing Browder

Notable quotes:
"... "a calculated attempt to harm our campaign and to make people doubt the legacy of Sergey Magnitsky," ..."
"... "This is a core issue about getting points of view into the public domain," ..."
"... I believe Magnitsky died ..."
"... Questions remain, but the fact that he was not killed, as Mr Browder says, by the same people who investigated his case and had a 'motive' to make him silent as a whistleblower – this is totally certain. ..."
"... "The story of Magnitsky turned out to be made-up," ..."
"... "I saw facts that do not add up, that prove that the story of Magnitsky was faked by Browder," ..."
"... "There is no evidence that he [Magnitsky] was killed or even was beaten," ..."
"... "I am a critic of the Russian authorities and I continue to be this critic, but in this particular case, the West made a mistake by adopting the Magnitsky Act and the Magnitsky resolutions, as they are based on a made-up story," ..."
"... "it is not in the interests of the US to remain trammelled by prejudice against Russia." ..."
"... "I thought I was filming about great the whistleblower Magnitsky. But it became my story of coming together basically with a lie, and with a lot of selfishness, and cynicism," ..."
"... "You have become a foot soldier of the propaganda war," ..."
"... "I am ashamed for you, Andrei. You will have to live with that." ..."
"... "I am a critic of the Russian regime and still am. I had a sort of political affiliation to Browder and his friends," ..."
"... "It goes against your ideology and your worldview to say that actually the Russian cops did not kill Magnitsky, the Russian cops didn't steal the money. Russia is still a very corrupt country, but in this case it was different." ..."
Jun 14, 2016 | www.rt.com
Despite threats of a libel lawsuit, a documentary about the Magnitsky case by a prominent critic of the Russian government has been shown in Washington. The film rejects the narrative about the case accepted in the West, on which the US Magnitsky Act is based. The film, titled 'The Magnitsky Act – Behind the Scenes', was presented to the public for the first time on Monday at the Newseum, a private museum dedicated to the news industry and freedom of speech in Washington, DC. The two-hour production is part documentary, part dramatization of the events that surround the death of Russian lawyer Sergey Magnitsky six years ago. Read more Hermitage Capital investment fund CEO William Browder (AFP Photo / Bertrand Guay) After Magnitsky: Dead lawyer's boss Browder and his legal hurdles – now in US

Magnitsky worked as an accountant for US-British investor William F. Browder, who made millions in Russia during the 1990s, but was later accused of tax evasion and fled the country. The lawyer was detained by the Russian police as part of a separate fraud investigation and died in police custody in November 2009.

Browder claimed that Magnitsky had been investigating corrupt police officers and was thrown into jail and murdered by them. He declared a crusade against what he called endemic corruption in the Russian government and lobbied across Europe and the US for punishment of the individuals whom he accused of involvement in Magnitsky's death.

In 2012 the US passed an act named after the Russian lawyer, which imposed sanctions against 40 Russian citizens – a move that Moscow saw as blatantly anti-Russian, and apparently retaliated against by banning the adoption of Russian orphans by US citizens.

'Story of coming together with lie, selfishness & cynicism'

Director Andrei Nekrasov struggled for months to have his controversial work shown to the public. Scheduled screenings in three European venues, including the European Parliament, were canceled because Browder threatened multimillion-dollar libel lawsuits against producers or would-be broadcasters of the film.

Browder opposes the film because he believes it to be "a calculated attempt to harm our campaign and to make people doubt the legacy of Sergey Magnitsky," as he told euobserver.com back in April.

Read more The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Smolenskaya-Sennaya Square in Moscow. © Natalia Seliverstova Russia slaps travel ban on 5 US ex-officials over 'legalization of torture'

Newseum was threatened in the same way, but rejected the pressure, saying that publishing Nekrasov's film was an issue of freedom of speech.

"This is a core issue about getting points of view into the public domain," investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, who moderated the event, told the audience before the screening.

Nekrasov says he wanted to make a docudrama film about Magnitsky ever since he heard of his story. He received funding for the project from eight European film foundations and state broadcasters and got in touch with Browder as part of his work.

But he found inconsistencies in the evidence presented by Browder's campaign to back his story, saying most of it was circumstantial at best. When he confronted the businessman about them, he said Browder broke off all contact and started to oppose the film.

The director believes that the narrative of Magnitsky as the brave whistleblower killed by corrupt Russian cops, as it was accepted in the West, is a scam by Browder, who capitalized on the lawyer's death to shield himself from all past and future accusations from Russian law enforcement, which he could claim to be politically motivated.

" I believe Magnitsky died ," Nekrasov told journalists in response to a question on whether he believed the lawyer was killed or died. " Questions remain, but the fact that he was not killed, as Mr Browder says, by the same people who investigated his case and had a 'motive' to make him silent as a whistleblower – this is totally certain. "

"The story of Magnitsky turned out to be made-up," Nekrasov told journalists as he commented on revelations he made during the making of his film. "I saw facts that do not add up, that prove that the story of Magnitsky was faked by Browder," he added.

Read more Aleksandr Perepelichny Key Magnitsky case witness may have been poisoned – report

Documents show that the evidence presented by Browder as proof that Magnitsky was a whistleblower was in fact a transcript of Magnitsky's interrogations, which were conducted before he made his statements, Nekrasov claimed, stressing that police officers had no motive for killing Magnitsky as he did not expose them.

"There is no evidence that he [Magnitsky] was killed or even was beaten," the film director told journalists.

"I am a critic of the Russian authorities and I continue to be this critic, but in this particular case, the West made a mistake by adopting the Magnitsky Act and the Magnitsky resolutions, as they are based on a made-up story," Nekrasov said, adding that "it is not in the interests of the US to remain trammelled by prejudice against Russia."

"I thought I was filming about great the whistleblower Magnitsky. But it became my story of coming together basically with a lie, and with a lot of selfishness, and cynicism," Nekrasov told RT in May, when the screening of the film was cancelled at the last moment in Brussels.

The director's view didn't go well with some of the first viewers of the film, including Russian opposition politicians and rights activists.

"You have become a foot soldier of the propaganda war," exclaimed Ilya Yashin, a veteran opposition figure in Russia. "I am ashamed for you, Andrei. You will have to live with that."

The outcry was perhaps to be expected. Nekrasov himself has been a critic of the Russian government for years. Some of his earlier works explored alleged involvement of the Kremlin in very serious issues, including the Chechnya war, the murder of Aleksandr Litvinenko, corruption in security agencies and others.

His documentaries, both political and otherwise, were praised by critics and won a number of awards, including the prestigious German Grimme-Preis award. Georgia named him person of the year 2009 for a film about the 2008 war against Russia.

"I am a critic of the Russian regime and still am. I had a sort of political affiliation to Browder and his friends," Nekrasov said of his latest film. "It goes against your ideology and your worldview to say that actually the Russian cops did not kill Magnitsky, the Russian cops didn't steal the money. Russia is still a very corrupt country, but in this case it was different." Where to watch Schedule Subscribe to RT newsletter to get stories the mainstream media won't tell you

[Jul 28, 2018] Alex Krainer's book. It is a devastating critique of Browder,

Jul 28, 2018 | thesaker.is

Harley Schlanger on October 05, 2017 , · at 4:00 pm EST/EDT

I have read Alex Krainer's book. It is a devastating critique of Browder, which exposes him as the corrupt thug he is. Browder is no more interested in "democratizing" Russia than the U.S. Deep State is in protecting the integrity of the U.S. election process! That Browder was the "star witness" for the Congress before it overwhelmingly passed the latest sanctions bill against Russia shows why it is important that he be exposed.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to know something about the networks and individuals acting to prevent a rapprochement between the U.S. and Russia.

[Jul 28, 2018] Putin Is Right to Question Browder and McFaul - One Meddled in Russia's Elections, One Ripped Off her People

Jul 28, 2018 | whatreallyhappened.net

At the press conference following their summit meeting in Helsinki, Russian President Vladimir Putin and American President Donald Trump discussed the possibility of resolving potential criminal cases involving citizens of the two countries by permitting interrogators from Washington and Moscow to participate in joint questioning of the individuals named in indictments prepared by the respective judiciaries. The predictable response by the American nomenklatura was that it was a horrible idea as it would potentially require U.S. officials to answer questions from Russians about their activities.

Putin argued, not unreasonably, that if Washington wants to extradite and talk to any of the twelve recently indicted GRU officers the Justice Department has named then reciprocity is in order for Americans and other identified individuals who are wanted by the Russian authorities for illegal activity while in Russia. And if Russian officials are fair game, so are American officials.

[Jul 28, 2018] Putin Vs. McFaul, DHS, Browder And Why

Notable quotes:
"... Included in the documents released by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday is a one-page document submitted by Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman for Donald Trump's 2016 effort. Manafort was serving in that role on June 9, 2016, when he joined Donald Trump Jr. and campaign adviser Jared Kushner in a meeting with a Kremlin-linked attorney who had promised incriminating information about Hillary Clinton. ..."
"... Those notes, apparently taken on Manafort's phone , are as follows. ..."
"... Offshore -- Cyprus ..."
"... Not invest -- loan ..."
"... Value in Cyprus as inter ..."
"... Active sponsors of RNC ..."
"... Browder hired Joanna Glover ..."
"... Tied into Cheney ..."
"... Russian adoption by American families ..."
"... In the absence of other context, the notes are cryptic and include words that certainly seem to wave red flags. "Offshore," "Illici[t]" -- even an apparent mention of former vice president Richard B. Cheney. ..."
Jul 28, 2018 | www.trevorloudon.com

Included in the documents released by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday is a one-page document submitted by Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman for Donald Trump's 2016 effort. Manafort was serving in that role on June 9, 2016, when he joined Donald Trump Jr. and campaign adviser Jared Kushner in a meeting with a Kremlin-linked attorney who had promised incriminating information about Hillary Clinton.

Those notes, apparently taken on Manafort's phone , are as follows.

In full:

In the absence of other context, the notes are cryptic and include words that certainly seem to wave red flags. "Offshore," "Illici[t]" -- even an apparent mention of former vice president Richard B. Cheney.

[Jul 28, 2018] How my book unmasking Bill Browder was censored by Amazon by Alex Krainer

Notable quotes:
"... [ Note by the Saker : for my review of Alex Krainer's book please click here ] ..."
"... "I always say the truth is best even when we find it unpleasant. Any rat in a sewer can lie. It's how rats are. It's what makes them rats. But a human doesn't run and hide in dark places, because he's something more. Lying is the most personal act of cowardice there is." ― Nancy Farmer, "The House of the Scorpion" ..."
"... Truth is tough. It will not break, like a bubble, at a touch. Nay, you may kick it about all day, and it will be round and full at evening. ..."
"... Alex Krainer is a hedge fund manager based in Monaco. His book, "The Killing of William Browder" may still be available in paperback at Book Depository , Barnes&Noble (USA), Amazon.fr , Amazon.co.uk , or ..."
Oct 05, 2017 | thesaker.is
[ Note by the Saker : for my review of Alex Krainer's book please click here ]

"I always say the truth is best even when we find it unpleasant. Any rat in a sewer can lie. It's how rats are. It's what makes them rats. But a human doesn't run and hide in dark places, because he's something more. Lying is the most personal act of cowardice there is." ― Nancy Farmer, "The House of the Scorpion"

In January 2015 I received a book titled "Red Notice" written by Bill Browder, once a hedge fund manager running Hermitage Capital the largest foreign-owned hedge fund in Russia. In the past, my path had crossed with Browder's on two occasions. In 2005, I was invited to his presentation, only days before he was expelled from Russia. On that occasion Browder surprised me because he was the first credible person I ever heard speaking positively about Vladimir Putin. The next time I met Browder was in 2010 during an investment conference in Monaco. This time he was very anti-Putin. When I received his book, it was recommended to me as an excellent read.

Through his book, Browder presents himself in glowing colors. By contrast, he portrays Russia as a sinister, backward tyranny and President Putin as the greediest, most ruthless tyrant since Genghis Khan. The book's main plot shapes up as an appealing story about the struggle of good against evil, about a lone maverick (Browder himself), taking on a powerful network of dangerous criminals and corrupt government officials in selfless pursuit of justice. It would be a beautiful story – if only it were true.

I was familiar with Parts of Browder's story, so his tale seemed fishy to me. A few days after reading it I had to re-read it from the beginning. Sure enough, I discovered quite a number of things that didn't add up which prompted me to do some research of my own. Much about it bothered me enough that I ended up writing a whole book which I titled "The Killing of William Browder: Deconstructing Bill Browder's Dangerous Deception." In August of this year I finally finished it and self-published it on Amazon.com.

My book's main object is to unmask Browder's brazen and dangerous deception. Beyond this, I've also sought to put his story into proper context by including a rather detailed account of the relevant events that led to the collapse of the USSR, Russia's subsequent transition from Communism to Capitalism and what 17 years of Vladimir Putin's leadership have changed . I've also included a section discussing the person and character of Vladimir Putin (since Browder relentlessly demonizes him). The book's last chapter discusses the history of the relations between the U.S. and Russia from the beginnings of the 19 th century, including the U.S. Civil War when Russia came to Abraham Lincoln's aid and played the key role in preserving the Union and what the future relations between the U.S. and Russia might, or should be.

As it turned out, my book was surprisingly well received by its readers and during the first few weeks it received very encouraging reader reviews (seven five-star and one four-star review). Unfortunately, by mid-September "The Killing of William Browder" came up on Browder team's radar and my problems began. It seems that in the free world, the freedom of expression comes with some restrictions. Exposing Bill Browder is one of them.

On 13 th September, University of Tulsa professor Jeremy Kuzmarov cited some of the materials from my book in his own Hffington Post article about Bill Browder, titled "Raising the Curtain on the Browder-Magnitsky Story." I was flattered by that article, but Huffington Post scrubbed it from their website within hours. A week later, Amazon's publishing company, CreateSpace "suppressed" my book, purging it from Amazon.com website and from its Kindle store.

CreateSpace explained that a third party claimed that my book "may contain defamatory content," and that to resolve the issues I needed to contact Mr. Jonathan M. Winer, Mr. Browder's legal counsel. Mr. Winer's word was all that was necessary for Amazon to oblige and remove my book from its bookstore. My protest and subsequent communications with CreateSpace had no effect and my only venue was to "work" with Browder's lawyers to "resolve the issues." In other words, I was put in the situation to have Browder censor my book and decide on whether it could be published or not. At first I rejected idea and refused to contact Mr. Winer offering instead my book for free to whoever requested a copy. But subsequently I decided to write to Mr. Winer anyway to find out what, if anything went wrong. So far, I have received no response.

This is not the first time Bill Browder – and whoever is backing him – has effectively censored what the Western public may or may not know about his story. In 2016, Russian film-maker Andrei Nekrasov made the documentary film, "The Magnitsky Act – Behind the Scenes."

Over the years, Nekrasov had built a reputation for producing documentaries that were critical of the Russian government, and with the Magnitsky affair, he initially followed Browder's narrative of the events and even envisioned Browder as the film's narrator. But his research into the subject turned up a number of problems with Browder's story. Nekrasov reached out to him for an explanation, but was unable to get in touch with Browder for several months. Nekrasov finally tracked down Browder at a book signing event where he tried and failed to get clarifications from him. Ultimately however, Nekrasov managed to meet with Browder and with the cameras rolling, he began to lay out his findings. As he did so, Browder became visibly vexed until at one moment he abruptly interrupted Nekrasov with an accusation that he was spreading Russian propaganda.

When Nekrasov's film was completed, Browder took aggressive action to block its screenings. With threats of lawsuits, he prevented an already scheduled screening to a group of Members of the European Parliament in Brussels. He did the same with another screening in Norway, and even managed to pressure the Franco-German television network "Arte" to call off the showing of Nekrasov's film on its channel. In June 2016, Browder tried to force The Newseum in Washington DC to cancel the screening of Nekrasov's film. Thankfully, The Newseum, whose laudable mission is to promote freedom of expression and "the five freedoms of the First Amendment to the U.S. Consitution," refused to be cowed by Browder's intimidation and showed the film to a Washington audience.

No, unfortunately this did not happen. Freedom of expression – which should be sacrosanct – is dangerously compromised in the west.

Open, civilized societies seek resolution of contentious issues by allowing proponents of different sides in any dispute to present their respective points of view. An informed, open debate is by far the best mechanism of conflict resolution because we can only arrive at constructive solutions to problems by taking different stakeholders' points of view into consideration. Browder's approach is contrary to that of civilized societies: he seeks to silence all points of view but his own. He seeks to persuade not by initiating an informed debate, but by suppressing all debate. This is not the conduct of a truth teller pursuing elevated objectives like human rights, justice, and truth. Truth does not need such forceful defense. As Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote, " Truth is tough. It will not break, like a bubble, at a touch. Nay, you may kick it about all day, and it will be round and full at evening. " Browder is clearly anxious that his story cannot take any kicking at all. Meanwhile in the western world, we appear to be at the mercy of lawyered-up elites for what we are allowed to know and what we are not.

In the end, I have no doubt that truth will prevail and that Bill Browder will lose his battle to keep his deception going. It is because there's something sacrosanct about truth and most people will reject a lie once they are aware of it.

Alex Krainer is a hedge fund manager based in Monaco. His book, "The Killing of William Browder" may still be available in paperback at Book Depository , Barnes&Noble (USA), Amazon.fr , Amazon.co.uk , or Amazon.de ­


bengo on October 05, 2017 , · at 11:20 am EST/EDT

Does anybody know how to get access to the movie?

This shocking tale of alleged Russian official corruption and brutality drove legislation that was a major landmark in the descent of U.S.-Russian relations under President Barack Obama to a level rivaling the worst days of the Cold War.

.But what the film shows is how Nekrasov, as he detected loose ends to the official story, begins to unravel Browder's fabrication which was designed to conceal his own corporate responsibility for the criminal theft of the money. As Browder's widely accepted story collapses, Magnitsky is revealed not to be a whistleblower but a likely abettor to the fraud who died in prison not from an official assassination but from banal neglect of his medical condition.

The cinematic qualities of the film are evident. Nekrasov is highly experienced as a maker of documentaries enjoying a Europe-wide reputation. What sets this work apart from the "trade" is the honesty and the integrity of the filmmaker as he discovers midway into his project that key assumptions of his script are faulty and begins an independent investigation to get at the truth .

RC on October 05, 2017 , · at 11:49 pm EST/EDT
The reason nekrasov has a following among European liberal snowflakes is that his documentaries have had a sarcastic jaded and negative tinge with respect to Russia (even BBC News has aired his documentaries as recently as 2016). He is rather pessimistic regarding Russia. That's what makes this revelation that even he (Nekrasov, a darling of the debauch liberals of the west, and Putin critic) found browder to not be credible. Coming from Nekrasov, that allegation and documentary would really destroy the battering ram (and useful fraud) that browder had provided the Western establishment.

Nekrasov is now getting a painful reality check as to how sophisticated the West's totalitarian nature is: they are not crude like the Chinese who will arrest small time nobodies for being too honest or critical, the West focusses it's blunt oppression for high value targets; just as outlined in 1984, the higher up you are and the greater your reach, the greater the scrutiny and the more blunt the instrument used to keep you in line. One must admit that the Anglo empire and their hypocrit vassals/covert-competitors in the EU, have refined this to an art and are far more efficient at it than their poor understudies in CCP China, or the Soviet Union.

Krainer is right though, the truth is going to prevail and eventually browder will be exposed (especially when the deep state decides he's too much of an annoying liability – as times progresses or as the deep state finds browder's agenda and his supporters getting in the way of the state's own agenda).

There is one thing that no one has clarified: Why was magnitsky allowed to die, why was he denied medical treatment, who was responsible for that? What are the facts around magnitsky's death?

Alex Krainer on October 06, 2017 , · at 4:40 am EST/EDT
Hi RC – a few great point. In Nekrasov's defence, I think I can understand him. I'm Croatian and if we started discussing Croatia, you'd find me very critical. My inclination would be to expose negative developments – not because I'm anti-Croatian but becauseI would want to draw public attention to problems that need to be addressed. To his credit, when he realized truth was different from what he initially believed, he made a turn to pursue truth when he could have made the film that would have been far better for his career.

I agree with you that Browder will probably end up thrown under the bus. That's what I'm afraid of (and the #1 reason for my book's title). But they will try to first make Browder a household name (crusader for human rights and justice, bla, bla..) with their Hollywood movie. Then they'll try to make it look like Putin had him killed.

As to why Magnistky died – that's a mystery. It was definitely a massive cock-up on the part of Russian law enforcement, but there's also the angle that his death was VERY convenient for Browder and his goodfellas.

Mulga Mumblebrain on October 06, 2017 , · at 5:44 am EST/EDT
Magnitsky died of his alcoholism, as alcoholics do.
Johan Vermeulen on December 25, 2017 , · at 5:10 am EST/EDT
I think that Magnitsky was such a pain in the ass ( he made 450 complaints about the prison-conditions during 358 days in prison, most ofwhich nobody could solve without a much larger budget) that doctors and staff prefered to not hear or to look the other way when Magnitsky came into a psychosis. He got into this psychosis after a court case from where he returned very disappointed. Future looked a lot worse than he had expected.

During the psychosis his heart stopped.

­
anonymoose on October 05, 2017 , · at 3:16 pm EST/EDT
"The Magnitsky Act: Behind the Scenes" can be seen online @:

https://my.mail.ru/bk/n-osetrova/video/71/18682.html?time=155&from=videoplayer

Anonymoose

­
Anonymous on October 06, 2017 , · at 7:11 pm EST/EDT
Parry's article mentions that he viewed the film on Vimeo, using a password provided by Piraya Film, the Norwegian production company.

This is a fairly standard way that independent producers shop their films around, looking for a distribution deal. I.e., a journalist or distributor contacts them, and they are given a Vimeo link and password for a private, limited-time viewing of the film. Journalists get this access because their writing helps to promote the film. The simplest distribution deal would then be through a subscription-based streaming platform. DVDs are more complicated and usually happen later.

However, in this case, the film is a co-production with four other companies, including ZDF and ARTE, which are large European networks, and all of whom have been threatened with litigation, presumably by Browder's lawyers.

In effect, then, the film in its original version has been censored. It is not available, unless or until somebody pirates it. There are several scammy-looking streaming sites that claim to have it, but they want your credit card number and they might just have the same Russian-dubbed version that you can watch for free via the link posted above.

I suspect the version of the film with the Russian voice-over was not done by Piraya Film, as the production of the sound doesn't seem very high compared to the quality of the original. This might have been done with authorization of Piraya, but if not, it means somebody has a illegitimate copy of the film to which they added the Russian voice-over. This means, they could also post the film in its original form. If they really want to increase awareness in the West of how the new Cold War is playing out, such a move could help.

Given the legal threats and the fact that few small distribution companies have the resources to fight legal battles, this might be a situation in which we are waiting for somebody to pirate the film, somebody who has access to the original, and to distribute it via a torrent.

Anonymous on October 08, 2017 , · at 2:24 pm EST/EDT
I wonder whether Nekrasov himself knows of the level of interest (at least in some quarters) in seeing the film, and could find a way to make one available somehow. . .

Katherine

Alex on October 09, 2017 , · at 3:08 pm EST/EDT
Something tells me he doesn't want to push this too much as money for this film came from French and German sources. It is nice to see him sticking his neck out to uphold the Truth.

When I watched the US rep. who supposedly investigated this Magnitzky affair for the US gov. state under oath that he never verified any of the info that Browder gave him, I kept thinking "Is this guy serious ?" But when you realize that they never did any investigation then it all seems logical.

[Jul 27, 2018] The story Browder refuses to tell is far more interesting than the one he wrote for the book

Not one review mentions possible close tied of Brower and MI6. Not a single review compare his book with Netrasov story or Alex Krainer's book
Jul 27, 2018 | www.amazon.com
1.0 out of 5 stars

By J. Koerner on January 9, 2018

The story Browder refuses to tell is far more interesting than the one he wrote for the book.

I found the book quite easy to put down: I got tired of all the chapters about how he made so much money following the fall of the Soviet Union. But Norman Pearlstine's statement that "Browder's business saga meshes well with the story of corruption and murder in Vladimir Putin's Russia" is more true than he realizes. With the release of Glenn Simpson's 20 hours of testimony before three Senate committees we now know that there is a great deal of information Browder failed to disclose. I'll let Simpson tell it:

He was willing to, you know, hand stuff off to the DOJ anonymously in the beginning and cause them to launch a court case against somebody, but he wasn't interesting in speaking under oath about, you know, why he did that ... All of this -- his determined effort to avoid testifying under oath, including running away from subpoenas and changing -- frequently changing lawyers and making lurid allegations against us, including that, you know, he thought we were KGB assassins in the parking lot of Aspen, Colorado when we served the subpoena, all raised questions
in my mind about why he was so determined to not have to answer questions under oath about things that happened in Russia.

I'll add that, you know, I've done a lot of Russia reporting over the years. I originally met William Browder back when I was a journalist at the Wall Street Journal when I was doing stories about corruption in Russia. I think the first time I met him he lectured me about -- I was working on a story about Vladimir Putin corruption and he lectured me about how have Vladimir Putin was not corrupt and how he was the best thing that ever
happened to Russia.

But returning to the detailed discussion of my work, we investigated William Browder's business practices in Russia, we began to understand maybe what it was he didn't want to talk about, and as we looked at that we then began to look at his decision to surrender his American citizenship in 1998. At that point somewhere in there the Panama papers came out and we discovered that he had incorporated shell companies offshore in the mid 1990s, in 1995 I believe it was in the British Virgin Islands, and that at some point his hedge fund's shares had been transferred to this offshore company. This offshore company was managed -- several of his offshore companies were managed by the Panamanian law firm called Mossack Fonseca, which is known now for setting up offshore companies for drug kingpins, narcos, kleptos, you name it. They were servicing every bad guy around. And I'm familiar with them from other money laundering and corruption and tax evasion investigations that I've done.I'll note parenthetically that William Browder talks a lot about the Panama papers and the Russians who are in the Panama papers without ever mentioning that he's in the Panama papers.

Now, I choose to believe Simpson, who not only chose to submit to 20 hours of Senate committee but then demand that it be made public, and not Browder, who fled from Simpson in the parking lot of an Aspen resort, later claiming he thought Simpson was KBG.

By Decorum on December 13, 2017
Heed the titular warning! Stay well away!

This is not a book to be set aside lightly... in the words of Dorothy Parker. It has been many years since I have read a book this bad. And many more since I finished one this bad. In recent years I have been more able to simply give up on bad books, ignoring the sunk cost fallacy that previously drove me to soldier on - perhaps it's an increasing awareness of the value of time, but nowadays I will bail out when it is clear I've made a big mistake. But this one was recommended by a friend whose taste I had no reason to doubt so I kept on, chapter after gruelling chapter, hoping for some epiphany or quality uptick. Let me save you from the same mistake.

One service this book does render, though, is to remind you, if you need it, that writing is hard. You may be the world's most fabulous person (well, second most fabulous - the author of this book is pretty clear about who occupies the top spot) but it don't make you a good writer, see. So the first important thing to know is that Bill Browder cannot write. He strings together cliches, name drops, humble brags (and regular brags too) but he can't write. No matter; perhaps the content can make up for it? I'm sure there are plenty of books where the content redeems the awful style, such as... well, I'm sure there are plenty. But the second thing to know going in is that the story is a pretty tedious, linear tale of BB's triumphs in the world of finance and then, as he calls it, "human rights". The problem, I think, is that the tone of the book is very smug and, despite the occasional and obviously cynical self-deprecation, deeply self-satisfied. The author has a real tin ear for his tone, I think, and it's well illustrated by a very early part of the story. He arrives in Poland in his first job, charged with the assessment and, hopefully, revival of a failing bus company. He expresses his deep sorrow and pity for the poor, poor workers and wonders what he can do to help. Meanwhile, he comes across a class of stocks in Poland that seem to him to be ridiculously underpriced. Aha! thinks the naive reader - I know where this is going: he will get the bus company to invest in these stocks ad save the day. But no! It turns out that these narratives shall not meet: he buys the stocks himself and makes out like a bandit, and he recommends that the bus company be shut down, throwing all the workers on the street. He is very, very sorry about the latter, of course, but, on the other hand, he has discovered his true calling as a value investor! Gaudeamus!

The author seems to have absolutely no appreciation of his role as a functionary in a very particular social system and it makes all of his carefully laid out social conscience ring hollow and renders his thoroughly documented tears crocodilian.

By EBaiz on February 15, 2018
two wrongs dont make a right

Both sides of this story are doing horrible things and the writer thinks what he did was correct!
This is a story where the writer only criticizes the horrible things the russian goverment did to him and how some oligarchs steal tax money (as everywhere but blatantly) but fails to realize that what he did, purchasing people-owned companies at fractions of a penny on the dollar and knowing it, while taking advantage of the imperfect systems put in place for the distribution of those companies' wealth to the people of that country, as he perfectly describes in this book, is also wrong in the first place. He fails to understand he actually hurt the people of that country when he bought shares at a "steal" price as he writes, he thinks he is doing the right thing because of his wall street mentality, no rules, prey on whomever gives an opportunity. Sad, but it's the world we live in today

By NYNYGuy on May 30, 2016
Greedy Hedgie's Delusions of Ritousness

Browder's story seems like a complete scam. First, he personally profited to the tune of $2 BN off the backs of the Russian people, taking advantage of inequities in the voucher system used with the dissolution of the USSR. He never mentions how much he personally made, as that would have cast too much reality on the sheer vanity, self-aggrandizement, and sanctimonious rubbish that is the rest of the story. More pointedly, he does not speak to how his money provided access to the highest levels of government, John McCain, and greased the wheels of the European legal system. Take for example, his ability to miraculously get two Interpol Red Notices removed within days of their placement. The Magnitsky case was terrible but he clearly uses it as a sanctimonious shield to get public sympathy and protection. I could go on but the bottom line is do not waste your time or money. Browder is one of the bad guys- at best a delusional narcissist, or more likely a greedy scam artist, pulling the wool over everyone's eyes.

By Critical Rationalist on July 18, 2015
What a greedy narcissist. Sheesh.

After finishing Masha Gessen's "Man Without a Face" (insightful) Karen Dawisha's "Putin's Kleptocracy" (a mind-boggling, devastating indictment of Putin and his cronies), and David Hoffman's "Billion Dollar Spy" (reads like a thriller novel), I was hoping that Bill Browder's book would provide some additional depth and an interesting perspective on the thoroughly corrupt workings of post-Soviet Russia. It does not.

Like Browder, I went to Russia numerous times -- but didn't have an office there as he did -- during the 90s and did a number of deals there. Unlike Browder, I speak the language and know Russian business and legal culture quite well. (I'm an average American, born and raised in Ohio, where I still live, but I do have a Russian wife, whom I met on one of my trips there in the 1990s.)

Browder is an extremely unsympathetic figure: Although he doesn't admit to it in the book, he was blinded by greed and arrogance to the point where he viewed his marriage and his son as of only trivial importance compared to his mission in life to get rich. He went to Russia to get something for nothing, thinking he was being shrewd. His utter ignorance of Russian business and Russian culture permeate the book -- his condescending attitude is similar to that of a British governor-general back in 1940s Iran, when the British role was limited to exploiting Iran by grabbing its oil for a pittance while speaking contemptuously of the locals. Browder contemptuously describes Russian attempts to reign him in: "Russians will gladly -- gleefully even -- sacrifice their own success to screw their neighbor." Yet he is oblivious to the fact that he himself, without any second thoughts, sacrificed his own family for the prospect of making just one more deal, just one more deal, and then just one more deal. American citizenship too was just another expendable in his all-consuming quest for riches.

Russia in the 1990s was a sea of corruption, intrigue, mafia protection rackets, turf battles, economic chaos, incompetence, and power grabs. Browder injected himself into it, completely ignorant of what he was getting into, determined to take advantage. He got burned.

"Red Notice" doesn't provide any perspective or depth; it isn't even particularly interesting. Browder's narcisssm and self-justifications permate the book, making it extremely unpleasant to read.

By AlanH on September 26, 2017
Russophobe Shill

The author is, inter alia, wanted in Russia for tax fraud and so, obviously, will say everything he can that is negative about Russia. His background and backers are also very suspicious, to my mind anyway.

I found the book to be nothing but hype. This was confirmed when I read Alex Krainer's "The Killing of William Browder: Deconstructing Bill Browder's Dangerous Deception." This excellent book - with factual content and well referenced - tears Browder to shreds. As he deserves to be.

But the sheeple will continue to want to believe this fiction - it suits the current american meme.

By Sorin Strugariu on October 29, 2017
I recommend to turn off the TV ( tel-a-vision or the-lies-on-vision ...

The ' truth ' and the brainwashed herd of the sheeple. The death of the Anglo-American-Zionist Empire. For those who think for themselves and cares for the others, here in the USA ( former United States of America, now United Slaves of America ) and all-over the World, for those of you in the research of ' whatreallyhappened ', I recommend to turn off the TV ( tel-a-vision or the-lies-on-vision ) and read...R E A D INDEPENDENT books and watch INDEPENDENT documentaries ! Books like ' The Killing of William Browder: Deconstructing Bill Browder's Dangerous Deceptions ' - NOT for sale on 'amazon.com' - WHY ???!!!...Documentaries like ' The Magnitsky act: Behind the Scenes ', produced by filmmaker Andrei Nekrasov ( a fierce critic of President Putin ).

By Maria S Plaksina on June 6, 2015
Crook got his chances in Russia ----- HE IS A LIER!!!!

Complete Rubbish! Not only he concealed a lot of facts - he fabricated a lot of them. The book is complete fiction, Why he doesnt mention that Magnitsky helped Hermitage create schemes to avoid taxes, crate shell-companies to buy stocks of Gazprom (foreigners can not buy Gazprom stocks), created shell companies in Cyprus and Kalmikia to pay joke taxes, hired disabled people to again lower taxes? etc He is a joke

Mr. Browder went to Russian in the early 90s to make quick cash - he did it by buying stocks from uneducated russians (similar to other russian oligarchs). Story of another greedy individual who wanted to become a billionaire fast - once he had to pay the price he become outraged by injustice of the system... XOXOXOXOXOX next time when you, Mr Browder, go to another developing country with the intention to rob the system be prepared to take the responsibility and do not whine about it like a little girl. A crook got upset that he didnt make as much money as he wanted and got kicked out from the country - what a joke.

BTW - the youtube video with Mr. Browder running away from the officer who served him subpoena is hilarious. If Mr Browder is so ethical and clean why he doesn't want to testify in court?

By max2015 on March 8, 2015
20% what readers want, the rest is poop!

This book came highly recommended to me by someone in the hedge fund industry. I was surprised at how bad it was. I was looking into insight as to how Bill Browder, who once ran the largest Russian hedge fund, made his fortune, estimated to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Instead the book was a very self serving book which I would identify as 20% self aggrandizement, self serving, 20% discussion of the arbitrage trades that made him rich, 60% discussion of the Sergie Magnitsky Act which he worked to pass. The book is full of contradictions including Browder's moral position and his self righteousness. It makes you wonder if anyone thought about this book in context of the 2008 financial markets collapse or did any research on Browder when reading it. Also, why does Browder today actively evade subpoenas to testify about what happened in American court as shown in Youtube videos?

The book is full of villains on both sides. Browder is the grandson of the former head of the US communist party. He gave up his US citizenship to become a British citizen in 1997. He worked for the criminal Robert Maxwell who had misappropriated corporate pension funds to live a flamboyant lifestyle, then he went to work with Edmond Safra as a partner in Hermitage Capital. Not only these global speculators but the book includes Mossad and a host of Russian oligarchs (all financed by Fred Goodwin's Royal Bank of Scotland). Browder's arbitrage was that Russian companies were severely undervalued because no other investors trusted Russian corporations and Russian rule of law. Whereas most other investors thought Russian companies were 100% un-investable, Browder figured many of them were only 50% un-investable and he invested in that 50% that was investable. After that arbitrage went away, he decided to start investigating Russian corporations for inside dealing and his activist strategy paid off but made many enemies. He was warned by numerous other investors that his life and others would be in danger for this. Everyone he works with leaves wreckage behind until he does the same. When one of his lawyers who gets less than 1% of coverage in the first half of the book dies in a Russian prison, he goes all out to try to get revenge on the Russians who he claims made tax fraud on the Russian government and him by seizing control of companies he owned. Many questions arise from the book some of which I list below.

(1) Browder's hedge fund is domiciled in Guernsey and Cayman Islands, notorious tax evasion locales, yet the premise of the second half of the book is to get revenge on corrupt Russian officials for stealing Russian tax money (his hundreds of millions of dollars)
(2) Browder is drawn to evil people and shady characters (Maxwell, oligarch companies, mossad, etc) like moths to a flame. Is it force of habit for him to fall into bad situations with them? Is it the US government's role to spend taxpayer money on exacting revenge for him on the crooked crowd he deals with? His friends are spoken with in great superlatives, his enemies despised. It is easy to imagine if you were a friend and became an enemy he would label you with epithets thus immediately.
(3) Browder becomes a British citizen (but a hedge fund deci or centi millionaire) yet he easily gets access to John McCain, Joe Lieberman and other US elected officials to get the Magnitsky act passed. Ultimately the Magnitsky act passes and Russia responds by banning all US adoptions of Russian children. For all you childless women looking to adopt Russian babies, thank the egotist Browder for your inability to do so going forward. Were you screwed in the 2008 financial markets collapse? The system may not work for you but it works for a global speculator who wants vengeance.
(4) But its worse. Browder goes to war with the Oligarchs who were funded by Royal Bank of Scotland and who defaulted on their loans from RBS. The UK citizens had to bail out RBS. Browder tries to utilize the British government to exact vengeance on the very same Oligarchs the British government is bailing out in some ways.
(5) Browder is the great example of the speculative hedge fund trader of the 90's and 00's run amok. He is a speculator, he was warned about the risks, he jumps headlong into them and knows Russia does not have American or British rule of law. But he expects the US and Britain to jump to his aid for his recklessness and bail him out like the other crooks of the 2008 vintage. EVEN THOUGH HE IS A BRITISH CITIZEN.
(6) Lookup the Wall Street Journal articles or Youtube videos about how the cowardly Browder runs away from being served by a subpoena and has constantly sought to avoid subpoena's from the Russians who are countersuing him in US and British court. If he is for rule of law, why not work his way through the legal systems. Seems like there is another side to the story.

By Jeremy J. Glover on August 19, 2015
Crack Cocaine Seller

Hey, guys and gals, the man is a shark. An investment banker. He'd sell his own grandmother if he thought he's make a profit. And now he's trying to profit by selling his own story, all teary-eyed about his lawyer and his quest for "justice." Barf. He wants to expose Kremlin corruption, happily forgetting Wall St. corruption that he hoped would make HIM millions. He only saw the light when other folks made millions and he got arrested. Kinda like any low-life Baltimore drug pusher. Please don't buy his line of crack cocaine.

By Jeremiah Gelles MD on August 18, 2017
The Kettle is Black

This is a thrilling page-turner of financial and political intrigue. The problem is that it is much like the pot calling the kettle black. Just about everything of which Browder accuses the Russian kleptocrats is equaled or excelled by the US robber barons and the agencies of violence wielded by the US government. Browder also digresses from time to time into the history of the USSR about which he knows nothing except the propaganda that we have been fed, most of which originates, ironically enough, from the very oligarchs he so justifiably criticizes.

By J. wilson on June 23, 2018
Paean to self

Very interesting to hear an insider's experience of Russia privatization and the politics of the 90's and early 2000s. I enjoyed that part.
That said, I found Browder spent a lot of time tooting his own horn and virtue signaling . He seemed quite impressed with himself and spends much of the book detailing why you should be too.
I never thought Putin was a good guy.
I never thought neocon/ deep state John McCain was a good guy. ( Browder does).
I don't think Browder made his gazillions by being a good guy. A lot of ordinary Russians got ripped off . Browder and a lot of others got rich.

By A.I. 8706 on May 18, 2015
The narrator ruins the narrative

This is a fairly interesting, if pretty unsurprising, story of high-level graft and corruption in Russia. Yes, Putin and the Russian government are rife with corruption, and the rules are subject to change on a whim. That should be obvious to anyone who paid any attention to Russia's preparation for the Sochi Olympics. I'm even inclined to take Browder's story about the torture and eventual death of Sergei Magnitsky (who he describes as a tax lawyer, but was actually an accountant) at face value.

But where Browder really grates is with his remarkable lack of self-awareness and out-of-touch declarations. At one point, for instance, in the run-up to the 1996 elections, in which there was a chance that the Communist candidate, Gennady Zyuganov, would win the presidency and potentially re-nationalize state companies, Browder said that he could deal with food shortages, hyperinflation, or any number of terrible conditions, but what he couldn't stomach was re-nationalization of industry. So, according to this guy, people starving and their savings evaporating into thin air is tolerable, but the worst thing imaginable is him losing his gains from fleecing Russian peasants. Solid guy, Browder.

For some background-- when the USSR fell, Russia embarked on a program of "voucher privatization" where every citizen received vouchers that they could use to bid on the shares of previously state-owned enterprises. Since Russia has incredible resource wealth, these were quite valuable. Unfortunately, in a country with no history of any kind of capital markets, the overwhelming majority of people had no clue what use they could get out of stock ownership. Immediately after they were issued, you could buy a voucher for a bottle of cheap vodka. And the people who became the oligarchs, as well as western vultures like Browder, did just that. Eventually, these shares sold at incredibly low valuations, and investors made a killing. But what Browder doesn't mention is that these absurdly low valuations almost certainly came about, in large part, from the fact that investors hate uncertainty. The possibility that a Zyuganov would come to power and re-nationalize state-owned enterprises was a real possibility, so plenty of investors stayed on the sidelines. Not Browder-- he jumped in, and when (surprise!) the Russian government behaved like the Russian government is wont to do, he acted like he was the victim of the world's worst injustice. Sure, what happened was in some way unfair. So was all the vultures jumping in to take advantage of peasants. Browder had no problem ripping off Russian peasants while extolling himself as a "great capitalist," but, when the Russian government took him in, he complained about the big bad Russians. It was extremely tiresome.

There were other places where his tone was equally annoying. He spent time talking about how "sexy" his second wife was/is, how she's "not like those other Russian girls that are just after money," and how many other people wanted to date her and how awesome he was because she chose him. Sergei Magnitsky's death is a sad story from a sad place. It's too bad the person to tell it is such a wildly out of touch hypocrite.

By Patricia5115 on March 22, 2015
A Self-Congratulatory Book with a Mission

The book was fun to read, like a Marvel comic book. Truly Bill Browder is, according to Bill Browder, a brilliant man willing to take daring risks where he sees an opportunity for personal gain. And I have to agree with him. With his inherited genetic intelligence, and some of the best education money can buy, he made himself enormously rich profiting from financial transactions that produced nothing of real value. I found this book to be quite self-congratulatory, written with no embarrassment for taking advantage of a whole population.
As Browder writes, "I found that to transition from communism to capitalism, the Russian government had decided to give away most of the state's property to the people. The government was going about this in a number of ways, but the most interesting was something called voucher privatization. The government granted one privatization certificate to every Russian citizen---roughly 150 million people in total -- and taken together these were exchangeable for 30 % of nearly all Russian companies." "The market price of the vouchers equaled 3 billion this meant that the valuation of the entire Russian economy was only 10 billion! That was one-sixth the value of Wal-Mart!" "Russia had 24% of the word's natural gas, 9% of the world's oil, and produced 6.6 % of the world's steel, among many other things. Yet this incredible trove of resources [owned by ordinary Russian citizens] was trading for a mere 10 billion! Even more astonishing was that there were no restrictions on who could purchase these vouchers. I could buy them, anyone could buy them." He recounts, "The Russian people had no idea what to do with the vouchers when they received them for free from the state and, in most cases, were happy to trade them for a $7 bottle of vodka or a few slabs of pork." Mr. Browder took advantage of their ignorance and brought millions of vouchers from the Russian people for a pittance of their true value. This is something to brag about? It is not laudable to buy something for a pittance of its real worth, from owners who have no idea of its true value. It is reprehensible. It was disturbing to me to see no introspection on the rightness or wrongness of beating someone out of his or her money.
Mr. Browder describes in his Sidanco deal the feeling he has when an opportunity for ungodly gains presents itself, "I had that tingling, greedy tension in my gut, similar to when I saw my $2,000 Polish investment multiply by nearly ten times, or when I unearthed the Russian voucher scheme."
Greed is not a virtue, Mr. Browder. It is a vice.

Reviewer Ian Kaplan wrote:
The second half of the book is about how Putin's gang tried to crush Hermitage Capital and everyone associated with it."

And, I would add, how Browder's gang is trying to crush Putin.
It makes me think that a large part of Mr. Browder's dogged determination in pushing the Maginsky Act through Congress, and signed into law, was not so much a humanitarian turn of the leaf for him, but a strategy to enlist the whole backing of the United States into his personal war with Putin, who put him out of a lucrative business in Russia.

By william schaffer on March 21, 2018
Confirmation that Russia is a very bad place.

I was familiar with Hermitage and Browder so it was not "news" to me. I feel Browder makes himself look good when in reality he was a jerk.
I don't wish him well!
Bill Schaffer

By exurbanite on February 25, 2018
Skepticism Advisable

Bill Browder is a shrewd fellow, at least up to a point. He saw an opportunity to make money after the collapse of Communism in Russia. He moved to Moscow, started a hedge fund, and succeeded in a big way. He made piles of money in essentially the same way the Russian oligarchy made it, by purchasing formerly state owned assets at hugely discounted rates.

It all worked beautifully for a while, but clever as he was Browder didn't realize he was living in a fool's paradise. Rather than remaining cool and quiet while making money, he publicly accused certain local enterprises of corruption. He did this, rather naively, in a country notoriously resentful of foreign interference in its affairs. Furthermore, there are indications that he himself was not above involvement in dodgy dealings, including fudging on taxes and sneaking funds into tax havens.

Not surprisingly, Browder, away on a trip, was barred from reentering Russia. Authorities raided his Moscow offices, confiscating files and computers. Although Browder managed to get his staff out of Russia, a man named Sergei Magnitsky whom Browder calls his lawyer, though he was apparently only an auditor, chose not to leave. This was a grave error, as poor Magnitsky became the foil for Russian displeasure with Browder. He was jailed, beaten, denied medical treatment, and died in prison. Meanwhile, a couple of thugs attached to the KGB, Russia's secret police, extorted large sums of money from Browder via a complex fraud, presumably accomplished with the tacit consent of establishment superiors.

Browder used Magnitsky's death to launch a major and eventually successful lobbying campaign for a U.S. law which came to be known as the Magnitsky Act. The law imposing sanctions on Russian officials responsible for Magnitsky's death. The Russians retaliated by placing Browder on the Interpol wanted list and later sentencing him in absentia to nine years in prison for tax fraud.

"Red Notice" is written in the fashionably breezy and colloquial style seemingly favored by many professional ghost writers. Not surprisingly, it portrays Browder as a skilled and principled financier who, prompted by the Magnitsky tragedy, turns himself into a towering figure in the world of human rights.

There are odd omissions in descriptions of Browder's family life. Divorce from his first wife is mentioned only in passing; although much ado is made over his meeting his glamorous Russian second wife, she fades entirely from later portions of the manuscript. "Red Notice" is a work of considerable interest. However, given the many controversies that hover over Browder's life and reputation, I believe it wise to view its contents with a generous degree of skepticism.

By El Briano on February 15, 2015
Hero with Somewhat Tarnished Halo

Other reviewers have accurately summarized the book, and justly praised Browder's commitment and courage in seeking a measure of justice for the brutal treatment, leading to death, of Sergei Magnitsky. My comment will focus on a disquieting subtext babout browder's activities in setting up and running his hedge fund.

Browder's rise to prominence with his Hermitage Fund followed the classic MBA playbook: find and exploit undervaluation. Fair enough in a financial world of transparency and disclosure where "consenting adults" can presumably fend for themselves. But this was not exactly the environment in Russia in the early 1990s. In its attempted transition from communism to some form of capitalism, the Russian government granted "privatization certificates" to the people - one certificate per citizen, about 150 million in total. Browder found that these certificates, in the aggregate, were exchangeable for about a 30 percent interest in newly privatized Russian companies.

In theory, this should have been a promising financial arrangement for the impoverished Russian people, particularly given the country's wealth of natural resources and the p[otential of its energy sector. But after decades of communism, capitalism was a largely unknown concept in day-to-day practice. Controlling interests were diverted to a well-connected oligarchical minority, who saw the companies more as ATMs rather than what we in the West would call modern corporations with appropriate disclosure and governance standards. Companies were valued at a tiny fraction of comparable Western entities, and the Russian stock market, such as it was, had little volume and virtually no transparency.

Browder had the insight to realize that the participation certificates were ludicrously undervalued in relation to the potential net worth of Russian companies. By purchasing large numbers of these certificates from the essentially clueless Russian citizenry for the functional equivalent of pennies on the dollar in relation to underlying value, Browder was able to position his Hermitage Fund to get in on the ground floor of a stock market that was virtually certain to rise dramatically as the potential of the Russian economy came to be understood in the Western world.

Depending on one's perspective, this is either an instance of brilliant, if amoral, take-the-world-as-it-is MBA-ism, or a classic example of a city slicker fleecing the rubes in a manner that would be much more difficult to pull off in a more sophisticated financial environment. I lean toward the latter position, and surely am not the only one dazed by the irony of Browder, grandson of a one-time head of the U.S. Communist Party, so unapologetically exploiting the ignorance of the Russian populace for capitalist gain.

Browder deserves all the kudos he's received for his work on the Magnitsky matter. But his Hermitage Fund (and its progeny and imitators) helped give visibility (though not transparency) and liquidity, as well as an aura of respectability, to the previously "undernourished" Russian stock market. Browder's investors did well, as did numbers of average Russians (though not necessarily those who sold the participation certificates). Principal beneficiaries, however, were the oligarchs and the well-connected favored few, the value of whose controlling interests soared greatly. In part, Browder was an enabler of the system he came (rightly) to despise and fight against.

By Scott Shorey on July 31, 2015
Whitewash Job

It seems Browder is trying to whitewash his own reputation and the part he played in the disasterous privitazation of Russian businesses after the collapse of the Soviet Union. He was an active and avid participant in buying up shares of companies for pennies on the dollar which helped to impoverish Russians for a generation. In addition his part in the death of Sergei Magnitsky was shameful. Yes Browder and Magnitsky uncoverd massive fraud but ultimately Browder decided that the money was more important than his "friend's" life. Passige of the Magnitsky Law slightly punished the perpetrators but he didn't need to die and Browder should be ashamed of himself as well.

[Jul 27, 2018] Grand Deception The Truth About Bill Browder, the Magnitsky Act and Anti-Russian Sanctions Alex Krainer 9780692131954 Amazo

Jul 27, 2018 | www.amazon.com
Product details
0 out of 5 stars Jareth Copus on July 19, 2018
A must read, regardless of political party of choice. A book that could save America, literaly

Well written, stringently researched and truly shines a light on the dark dealings of Bill Browder. Seamlessly disects the chapters of Bill browders book red notice bit by bit. Everyone should read this book.

[Jul 27, 2018] "Semi-intelligence agences" is a very sad joke: When I watched the US rep. who supposedly investigated this Magnitzky affair for the US gov. state under oath that he never verified any of the info that Browder gave him, I kept thinking "Is this guy serious ?"

Jul 27, 2018 | thesaker.is

­ Alex on October 09, 2017 , · at 3:08 pm EST/EDT

Something tells me he doesn't want to push this too much as money for this film came from French and German sources. It is nice to see him sticking his neck out to uphold the Truth.

When I watched the US rep. who supposedly investigated this Magnitzky affair for the US gov. state under oath that he never verified any of the info that Browder gave him, I kept thinking "Is this guy serious ?" But when you realize that they never did any investigation then it all seems logical.

[Jul 27, 2018] Key Magnitsky case witness may have been poisoned report

Notable quotes:
"... "no third-party involvement." ..."
"... "heartbreak grass." ..."
"... "cause for very serious concern," ..."
May 19, 2015 | www.rt.com
Russian businessman Aleksandr Perepelichny, a key witness in the Sergey Magnitsky case who died in southern England in November 2012, may have been poisoned, British media reported. Perepelichny allegedly cooperated with Swiss investigators looking into the death of Sergey Magnitsky and a $240 million money laundering case, involving Russian officials and organized crime.

Magnitsky was a Russian lawyer, who was held in pre-trial detention in connection with tax fraud, and died in 2009 due to being denied crucial medical treatment by prison officials.

His death caused an international outcry and led to the passing of the so-called Magnitsky Act by the US Congress in 2012, which punished a group of Russian state officials and law enforcers with a US asset freeze and a visa ban over alleged human rights violations.

READ MORE: 'Key witness' in Magnitsky case suddenly dies in UK - report

Shortly before testifying in the Magnitsky case, Perepelichny collapsed and died while jogging near his home near in Surrey, south of London.

The Surrey police initially found nothing suspicious about the 44-year-old man's death, saying that there was "no third-party involvement."

However, a pre-inquest hearing Monday has shed light on new facts in the case, which contradicted the initial conclusions by the police.

A top poisons expert examined a sample of Perepilichny's stomach contents last year and discovered the presence of a chemical strongly associated with a lethal plant toxin, the Independent newspaper reported.

Professor Monique Simmonds from Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, London, told the court that the substance was extremely rare in nature and could only be obtained from gelsemium, a poisonous plant also known as "heartbreak grass."

The plant only grows in remote areas in Russia and China, and became known as a poison used by assassins in the two countries.

READ MORE: After Magnitsky: Dead lawyer's boss Browder and his legal hurdles – now in US

However, it isn't used very often. The most recent known use of gelsemium as a poison was the assassination of Chinese billionaire Huang Guang in 2011.

Lawyers representing the police at Surrey Coroner's Court in Woking acknowledged that the presence of the chemical "ion" in Perepilichny's system was a "cause for very serious concern," the Independent reported.

The new finding prompted the judge to reschedule a hearing in Perepilichny's case, due to begin Monday, until September as to allow more tests to be performed.

According to the Independent, the Surrey police may find themselves in hot water for negligence if Perepilichny's poisoning is confirmed, as the case would resemble the high-profile murder of Aleksandr Litvinenko in London in 2006.

Litvinenko, a former Russian security officer, died in hospital after being poisoned with radioactive Polonium 210, with his death acting as a stumbling block in relations between Russia and the UK.

[Jul 27, 2018] Browder Is Censoring a Film about Magnitsky

Notable quotes:
"... A documentary screening of Andrei Nekrasov's investigation comes to a halt due to behind-the-scenes schemes of an American billionaire. ..."
"... Originally appeared at Rusplt , translated by Mona Lita exclusively for SouthFront ..."
Jun 03, 2016 | southfront.org
A documentary screening of Andrei Nekrasov's investigation comes to a halt due to behind-the-scenes schemes of an American billionaire.

Nekrasov (c) in a scene from his new film (Photo: greens-efa.eu)

Originally appeared at Rusplt , translated by Mona Lita exclusively for SouthFront

Seems like the world has turned upside down. After decades of living under the conditions of censorship, Russia has generated an unprecedented desire for freedom. Europe, by contrast, is increasingly resorting to banning facts that are inconvenient for her. Myths that benefit politicians of the Old World are claimed as truth, while all the rest is, for example, Russian "propaganda". On this basis the obstacles to Mass Media activities are being fixed, while access to individual documentaries is being cut off from the viewer. One of these types of works is a film "the Magnitsky Act – behind the scenes", made by a Russian director Andrei Nekrasov, which is dedicated to a famous story about tax evasion, which later becomes the reason for the adoption of the American law with the same name.

Another screening of Nekrasov's film was to be held today, on May 27th as one of the short films at a festival in Grimstad, Norway [ SF editor: It wasn't screened]. Whether it will happen or not is not yet clear. The fact is that the film's authors now have a powerful opponent, an American billionaire and CEO of Hermitage Capital – William Browder, an author of the Sergei Magnitsky myth and his self-proclaimed political executor. Unhappy with Nekrasov's investigation, in which a version of an innocent businessman is being refuted, Browder launched an opposition campaign. He is not hesitating to use a whole arsenal of tools for this: direct political pressure, defender assaults and prosecution. A Norwegian publication Dagbladet writes about this.

According to the publication, for the sake of counteracting the film's circulation Browden held separate meetings with the Storting parliament members – Ingerd Skou from the "Høyre" Party and Morten Wold from the Progress Party. Both of them are also members of the Storting delegation in PACE, and this means they have European-scale influence. Moreover, Browder met with the leader of the Norwegian Party Venstre, Trine Skei Grande. In respect to Nekrasov's film the policy is set to be very critical, calling it propaganda. "Everyone knows that Russia is a master at conducting such campaigns", a publication quotes her words. It turns out she has not seen the film itself but believes in Browder's version.

In addition to politicians' support, Browder – an American with a British passport, enlisted the sympathy of human rights activists. The Norwegian Helsinki Committee is entirely on his side. A corresponding meeting took place during the visit of this country's businessman.

A sacrifice is required for human rights activists to exist. Magnitsky is the suitable candidate. Death in a Russian prison makes him a desirable target to human rights fanatics. In case this resource is not enough, Browder prepared a court appeal. "I have hired Norwegian attorneys. They have been ordered to take up the case", he explained to Dagbladet. Browder wants to sue not only the film director but also the film festival in Grimstad, if he did not remove the film from screening.

Right now, the festival organizers are resisting. According to the Executive Director Anita Svingen, they will refuse the showing of Nekrasov investigation only if the creators themselves will withdraw the film for legal reasons. Despite Browder's threats to sue the festival, its organizers invited him to a discussion that will take place after the viewing. They recalled that it was a Norwegian company that created the film, which guarantees him a sufficient level of confidence.

It should be noted that funding for Nekrasov's work is also European. The film received millions of krones from the Nordic Film and TV Fond, the Norwegian Film Institute (NFI), Norsk Film Institute and the Foundation Fritt Ord ("Free Word"). If those politicians who oppose the showing are outraged by this circumstance, then the Representative of NFI Mette Taraldsen reasonably noted that the very "form and task of documentaries is to raise critical questions and to cover the case from different angles". At the same time he also reminded that Andrei Nekrasov is one of the most experienced documentarians, and it makes no sense not to trust him.

Europe is afraid of free speech?

In fact, the Russian director is considered one of the masters in European documentary films. A partnership with Andrei Tarkovsky, training in Bristol and work on the British television network allowed him to sustain a professional status. His work has received numerous awards, including one at the Cannes Film Festival. An important factor in Nekrasov's reputation is that he is the current Russian president's enemy. Accusations that he "sold out" to the Kremlin obviously have no ground to stand on. "I used to make films that were quite critical of Putin, and such allegations hurt me deeply", he said.

When Nekrasov first began shooting the film, he implicitly believed in Browder's version. After all, all the major Western media consistently wrote and spoke about it with one voice. The adaptation of the story "about the conspiracy of Russian policemen killing the fighter of Magnitsky corruption" was assumed. It was only during the process of filming, when the director was introduced to the documents that he realized he was filming a lie. The version of the story that Browder circulated has little to do with reality, but rather serves the businessman's personal interests. This explains the powerful complex program to counter the film's showing and threats with multi-million dollar lawsuits to anyone involved in its spread. It's just that Browder's pride was hurt.

The first documents Nekrasov learned of were from Browder's famous site "the Untouchables", where Magnitsky exposes the corruption of investigators Karpov and Kuznetsov. As it turns out, there was no exposure. "There was an interrogation, and there was protocol, which shows that Magnitsky is in the midst of a heavy defensive struggle with the investigation. And he is not blaming any MIA officers, and doesn't even mention them", writes Nekrasov in his blog on the website "Echo of Moscow". "Since then (Fall of 2014) my "based on a true story" film began ripping at the seams. Each day I was more certain that it was based on a lie".

As a result, the director developed his own version of events that was built as a result of personally studying all sources. According to Nekrasov, Magnitsky was not an auditor but an accountant who was arrested for tax fraud. He died in prison not because of beatings or other illegal pressures but as a result of a fatal deterioration of health caused by being confined. Browder, as a political attack on Russia used his tragic death in retaliation for his expulsion from the country in 2005 and termination of business. And this is how his interests coincided the U.S. foreign policy objectives: it is how the "Magnitsky Act" was born, the effect of which has recently spread globally. The main thing that Nekrasov understood was that Magnitsky was not murdered and has not pressed charges against the investigators.

It is not surprising that Browder was so ready to actively oppose the showing of Nekrasov's film. Forces all too powerful are drawn into the story. The previous film showing in the European Parliament that was scheduled for April 27th, and it too met resistance and was cancelled. The organizers received a letter with threats from Browder and were unable to withstand pressure. A member of the European Parliament Heidi Hautala particularly mentioned this. She called the pressure "sudden and strong". The fact that the premier of this film was so easily removed from a scheduled screening in the European Parliament shows that the right to the freedom of speech is offered only to one side", said the film's screening organizer Natalia Veselnitskaya.
A near future will show how another attack of this unscrupulous billionaire will end. Nekrasov himself seems to hope for the best, and that the Europeans will still see his honest investigation and will draw conclusions. "An 'Oscar' is not necessary. But we will see the idols fall", said the director.

[Jul 26, 2018] EXCLUSIVE Russian TV Bill Browder is CIA agent, recruited Navalny. Browder furious! Navalny sues! - YouTube

Jul 26, 2018 | www.youtube.com

Russia Insight Published on Jul 17, 2016

This documentary caused an uproar in Russia when it appeared in April of 2016.

This film was made by the main Russian government news broadcasting company, Rossiya 1.

It alleges that Bill Browder, the legendary American hedge fund manager who from 1995 - 2005 was the largest foreign investor in Russia, controlling billions of $ and a significant share of Russia's leading companies, was in fact a CIA front.

At one point his funds owned 7% of Gazprom, using what the film argues were illegal schemes to acquire shares

The film argues that Browder's whole involvement with Russia was a CIA operation to disrupt Russia politically and economically
It alleges that in 2006, Browder was instructed by the CIA to provide financial support to the rising opposition politician, Alexei Navalny, and that the two then closely cooperated for the next 5 years.

As evidence, the film cites hacked CIA email and skype correspondence which it claims fell into Russian hands during the government upheaval in Kiev in 2014.

When the film appeared, Browder and Navalny charged that the evidence was faked, and Navalny sued Rossiya 1 for libel. As of the translation of this video, (July 2016), the suit has not been concluded.

Browder was expelled from Russia in 2006, after which he led a highly successful public campaign criticizing Russia and Putin. The film argues that the campaign was financed by the CIA.

The campaign demanded sanctions against Russia for what Browder alleged was the murder of one of his employees, Sergei Magnitsky, and theft from his companies, by corrupt Russian officials.

His campaign resulted in the famous "Magnitsky Act" sanctions against Russia, passed by Congress in 2012.

The film alleges that this cynically misrepresents the facts. It alleges that Magnitsky ended up in jail for carrying out major fraud for Browder, and that he was on the verge of testifying against Browder when he died. It cites the hacked CIA mail as evidence that the CIA managed to orchestrate Magnitsky's death in prison.

The film argues that the only people with a motive for Magnitsky's death were Browder and the CIA, because his testimony about the tax fraud would have been devastating.

The film includes embarrassing details of tax avoidance schemes used by Browder and Magnitsky, including hiring barely literate invalids in remote corners of Russia as fake executives in order to receive tax breaks amounting to 100s of millions of $.

The film then alleges, again citing the hacked CIA correspondence, that in 2010 Browder paid Navalny $300,000 to conduct a PR campaign in Russia in support of the Magnitsky Act.

This documentary was never aired separately, rather appeared as a segment within the April 13, 2016 episode of the popular Russian political talk show "Spetsialnii Korrespondent" https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAkt...

The episode consisted of an emotional 1.5 hour discussion of the film, with several people who appeared in the film present https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37GZ3... (only in Russian)

Of the 10-plus guests, all but one, an American journalist, argued heatedly that Browder had clearly committed gross financial crimes and agreed with the film.

The comment leading into the beginning of the film is typical of the tone of the talk show, where the Deputy Chairman of Russia's parliament compares Browder to an "intestinal tapeworm".

At the conclusion of the film, the talk show guests discussed the film for a further 1.5 hours. About half of the guests were also featured in the film, and they were able to go into much more detail about their knowledge of the Browder case.

The discussion became very emotional, with some guests shouting about what they alleged are Browder's crimes.

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[Jul 26, 2018] Report Russia Implicates Browder In Magnitsky 'Murder' Probe, Citing Widely Mocked MI6 'Expose' by Carl Schreck

Smoke without fire ?
Oct 24, 2017 | www.rferl.org

In April 2016, the head of Russia's powerful Investigative Committee instructed his subordinates to examine the potential " complicity " of U.S.-born British businessman William Browder -- once Russia's largest portfolio investor -- in the "murder" of his former employee, Sergei Magnitsky.

It was a bizarre twist in the saga of Magnitsky, whose 2009 death in a Moscow jail resulted in a 2012 U.S. law bearing his name that slaps sanctions on Russians deemed to be human rights abusers. Browder vigorously lobbied for the law, arguing that Magnitsky was tortured and denied medical treatment for blowing the whistle on a massive tax fraud allegedly involving Russian law enforcement and tax officials.

Russia, which says Magnitsky's death was a tragedy but denies allegations that he was abused while in custody, has undertaken an aggressive, multipronged effort in recent years aimed at discrediting Browder and the narrative underpinning the U.S. Magnitsky Act.

The law was said to be at the center of a meeting between a Russian lawyer, Donald Trump Jr., and other confidants of U.S. President Donald Trump at a controversial meeting in New York in June 2016.

Investigative Committee chief Aleksander Bastrykin's call last year to probe allegations of Browder's possible role in Magnitsky's death was explicitly linked to a documentary on Russian state TV that alleged a byzantine conspiracy between Browder, British intelligence, and Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny.

But for 18 months, it was unclear if this probe had gone anywhere.

According to an October 22 report by The New York Times, however, Russian authorities are indeed pursuing a possible murder charge against Browder -- and citing evidence that parrots widely mocked claims presented in the documentary broadcast on Rossia-1 television a day prior to the Investigative Committee's announcement.

Citing documents obtained from a court docket by a lawyer for Magnitsky's family, the Times reported that Russian prosecutors allege Browder colluded with a representative of Britain's MI6 to convince doctors to withhold medical care to "cause the death of S.L. Magnitsky" while he was in custody.

RFE/RL reached out to Browder, who said he was not immediately able to provide a copy of the documents in question.

Prosecutors, according to the Times report, also cite alleged intercepts of intelligence communications and suggest the goal of the purported plot was to start "a significant news trigger to discredit" Russia.

They also cite claims made in the Rossia-1 documentary, including that Browder was in cahoots with Navalny in a purported secret operation titled "Quake" -- with Browder supposedly using the code name "Solomon" and Navalny using the moniker "Freedom."

Clumsy Fakes

The documentary featured scans of alleged secret U.S. and British documents concerning Browder, Navalny, and Magnitsky that were widely ridiculed as crude fakes based on their clumsy syntax and grammatical mistakes -- including improper use of English indefinite and definite articles that often stymie native Russian speakers.

The claims by Russian prosecutors, as reported by the Times, echo one alleged CIA document from 2009 shown in the Rossia-1 program with the awkward subject line: "Report on the health status of a Sergei Magnitsky."

The document purports that Browder ("Agent Solomon") "was offered by proxies in the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service to arrange the termination of any medical services for Magnitsky...which could lead to his death."

That document is signed by "V. Plame" -- an apparent reference to former CIA covert officer Valerie Plame, who was exposed by officials in the administration of President Georgia W. Bush after her husband criticized the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

Plame on Twitter called the document, purportedly from 2009, " such nonsense " and noted that she left the CIA in 2007.

The Russian Investigative Committee did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment on The New York Times report, and officials there could not immediately be reached by telephone.

The report was published just days after Canada on October 19 passed its version of the Magnitsky Act, a move that Russian President Vladimir Putin called " unconstructive political games ."

Browder U.S. Travel Blocked?

Browder, meanwhile, is claiming that Russia has placed him on an Interpol list, and that his U.S. "global entry status" -- which can expedite entry to the United States -- has been revoked by U.S. officials, The Guardian reported.

Interpol has previously refused to place the investor, whom Russia convicted in absentia on tax-evasion charges in 2013, on an international wanted list at Moscow's request.

The Guardian reported over the weekend that Russia had used a loophole allowing governments to place individuals on the Interpol database unilaterally.

A spokesperson for U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in an e-mailed statement that Browder's visa waiver had been "manually approved" on October 18, though Browder told the Associated Press that he had been informed by U.S. authorities of his rejection on October 19.

Browder said on Twitter late on October 23 that his waiver had been " restored " and that he has "successfully checked into a U.S. flight."

[Jul 26, 2018] Who Is Assassinating MI6 Assets On British Soil The Millennium Report

Notable quotes:
"... I do not recall ..."
Mar 15, 2018 | themillenniumreport.com

It took place in New York on Feb 3, 2015, when marshals from the U.S. District Court in Manhattan tried to serve him a subpoena to give evidence as part of the only trial thus far on US soil proceeding from the Magnitsky Act. (The details of that case can be found here .) The reason for Mr. Browder's nervous behavior is obvious: his arguments served only political aims and were intended for cases in which the verdict is known from the beginning. But none of his claims could stand up to scrutiny by any experienced lawyer once real business interests were at stake, and this is exactly what happened with Mark Cymrot from BakerHostetler during Browder's court deposition on Apr 15, 2015.

Returning to Perepelichny, we have to acknowledge that he was a key witness who could potentially destroy the high-political-stakes scam being conducted with the Magnitsky dossier. As Browder was responding with " I do not recall " and " I do not know " to any real question asked him in court, the US judiciary system might have been very interested in hearing from Perepelichny. This menace to the Magnitsky Act was eliminated one week before the bill passed the US House: on Nov. 10, 2012 Alexander Perepelichny was found dead outside his mansion in London. The police investigation did not yield any tangible results, but the theory of "Russian mafia" involvement was implanted in the international media at the proper time. One month later the Magnitsky Act was signed by President Obama

... ... ...

https://orientalreview.org/2018/03/12/fatal-quad-who-is-assassinating-former-mi6-assets-on-british-soil/

[Jul 26, 2018] Agent William F. Browder The Smoking Gun by Gilbert Doctorow

Notable quotes:
"... When some Washington (politician) was asked why he opposed Trump - He is not part of the Security establishment. "Security establishment" = insider ..."
Apr 13, 2016 | euvsdisinfo.eu

The common conclusion of my two encounters with Bill Browder was that his intensity and the time he was devoting now to putting in place anti-Russian sanctions in Europe was in no way comparable to the behavior of a top level international businessman. It was clear to me that some other game was in play.

One of the clear missions of Russian state television in 2016, the year of elections to the State Duma has been to discredit Alexei Navalny, the long established blogger, wily critic of the Kremlin and leader of the new generation 'non-systemic' opposition by exposing him as a fraud in the pay of Russia's Western rivals and ill-wishers.

Several weeks ago Russian state television broadcast hidden camera recordings of Navalny's first meeting with Carl Bildt, former Swedish premier and foreign minister, best known in this part of the world for leading the Eastern Partnership program aimed at removing former Soviet republics, notably Ukraine, from the Russian sphere of influence.

A screen shot from the documentary, with what is allegedly a conversation between Browder and Navalny

This past Sunday, the Vesti nedeli program, a prime time Sunday evening wrap-up of the week's news presented by the senior journalist and manager of Russia's informational broadcasting resources, Dmitry Kiselyov, showed excerpts from a documentary film about Navalny and his mentor, or handler, William F. Browder. (Video below - in Russian only)

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Pjv48NPdst4

The film, entitled "The Browder Effect," was assembled by the channel's investigative reporter and presenter in his own right, Yevgeni Popov. The full version of "The Browder Effect" will be aired on Wednesday evening, 13 April on Russia's flagship network, Pervyi Kanal. However, from the lengthy segments shown on Sunday it is possible to draw some conclusions about the sensational material it sets out.

Both Vesti 24 and Pervyi Kanal are Russian language stations directed at the domestic audience. From the standpoint of their management, whatever is sensational about the film has to do with the way it conclusively details Navalny's recruitment by Bill Browder in 2007 for a program run by Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, also known as Military Intelligence (MI6), intended to destabilize the Russian government. Navalny came to the attention of MI6 because Browder determined he was "the most suitable candidate for future political leader" given his creativity, new media mastery and speaking skills on politics, law and economics.

We then follow Navalny's progress as a foreign-paid trouble-maker engaged in standing up for minority shareholders and exposing corruption in major Russian, partly state-owned companies, meaning that he was busily attacking Vladimir Putin's direct appointees. We are told Navalny was next a useful aid to U.S. authorities in compiling a list of high Russian judicial and penal administrative officials for inclusion in the Magnitsky List on the basis of their alleged involvement in the torture and murder in detention of Browder's erstwhile accountant, Sergei Magnitsky. One document from 2010 indicates Navalny received large sums of money, at one point a $300,000 payment, from his overseas handlers to apply his skills with social media and disseminate a positive spin on American sanctions to Russia's liberals and creative classes. The objective was to undermine popular trust in the courts.

The last documents involving Navalny shown on the Vesti nedeli program Sunday date from just before the State Duma elections on 4 December 2011, which were followed by massive street demonstrations against what was called electoral fraud perpetrated by the ruling party. Notwithstanding the advice from his mentor, Browder, to stick with his economic warfare on Russian big business and stay out of politics, this was the point when Navalny went on to emerge as a key leader in the new generation of forces opposed to the Kremlin.

For Western observers, there is nothing sensational in the exposé of Navalny as a paid agent of British intelligence operating under the code name "Freedom." He is a remote personality, has been denounced by some in the West as a Russian nationalist and he is at liberty, not a prisoner of conscience. The truly sensational nature of Yevgeny Popov's film lies elsewhere, in its material on Browder. If Navalny was recruited by Browder, then Popov was obliged to show how it was that the billionaire co-founder and owner of Hermitage Capital, which was at one point the largest foreign portfolio investment company in Russia, could be an agent, code named "Solomon," in the MI6 documents presented on screen.

To answer this question, the film flashes back to 1995, and a Memorandum for the Chief of Secret Intelligence dated 12 July describing the attraction of Browder for his new bosses: "he is an important figure in integration of financial structures into the Russian economy. [He] has extensive contacts with [sic] international banking community and has [sic] wide range of relations with representatives of business communities in the UK, the USA, Europe, China and India."

This was about the time when Browder was making a transition from highly paid employee heading up the section of private investing in Russia at Salomon Brothers (hence the coy code name, a corruption of Salomon) to setting up his own investment company with seed capital from the elderly Syrian-Jewish-Brazilian banker and entrepreneur Edmond Safra. It was also the time when Browder, a US citizen became a British subject.

And so that we may understand why such talents and contacts could be useful to British (and by extension to American) intelligence, a further flashback to 28 August 1986 shows us a CIA document entitled "Change the Constitutional and Political System in Eastern Europe and the USSR" signed by the agency director Wiliam Casey. Among the specific actions within the scope of this program would be "getting control over financial flows and removing assets from the economies of developed countries."

The narrator explains that even more than 25 years after the disappearance of the USSR, this CIA policy, known as "The Quake" (Drozh', in Russian) remains in effect.

Not content with proving that a billionaire investment fund owner could also be an MI6 operative, the film's producer also saw fit to demolish via documentary proof the entire Browder story about the reasons for his being declared persona non grata in Russia in 2006 as a threat to national security and about the persecution of his loyal retainer Magnitsky at the hands of rapacious Moscow officials plundering the remains of his company.

It emerges from a memorandum to the Director of Central intelligence written on CIA letterhead and dated 20 September 2009 that Browder had discussed with MI6 the deteriorating health of Magnitsky in detention and that he was involved in plans to have the penitentiary service arrange the termination of medical services. The report went on to say that this 'medical error' could lead to Magnitsky's death.

A follow-on interview with one political analyst explains that Browder was the only one who could profit from Magnitsky's demise. We are told his former protégé was about to start talking to prosecution against his employers. Then his death provided the material for the cause célèbre that Browder would ride to nation-wide prominence in the USA and in Europe with the eventual passage of the sanctions on Russia he promoted as the just punishment for corrupt and murderous officials of the Putin regime.

Thus, the collateral damage resulting from Yevgeni Popov's exposé amounts to a devastating attack on the political situation in the United States, where the CIA is shown to have been complicit in setting up the case used to move the American political mood and legislation in a harshly anti-Russian direction via the Magnitsky Act sanctions. Here is a smoking gun of great potential importance for those who care about who is actually controlling the US government if not our elected leaders.

Part of the documentary rests on expert testimony of Russian political analysts. Part rests on skype texts and on telephone conversations intercepted by the Russian intelligence agencies. But the most important material, including the aforementioned 'smoking gun' come from documents in a cache prepared by Kremlin-nemesis Boris Berezovsky in London as he tried to negotiate with Vladimir Putin a possible return to his motherland that would land him in good graces and not in a prison cell.

One sequence in the documentary introduces us to Sergei Sokolov, the former chief of security for Berezovsky who, at his boss's instructions, hid copies of this cache of documents in several locations and eventually brought a set with him to Moscow, where we may assume Russian intelligence officers pored over them. Sokolov is not a new face to viewers of Russian state television. Several months ago he was shown in a documentary examining the death of Berezovsky in one of his London properties. The cache of documents was mentioned then but not described.

This peculiar provenance of the documents means that they should have been subjected to special scrutiny by Mr. Popov's team before presentation to the general public. Considering the possible impact of the content of these documents on US-Russian relations, such caution would be doubly recommended. Regrettably, that appears not to have been the case.

In the information war that has been ongoing and escalating to fever pitch ever since Vladimir Putin made his famous accusatory speech directed against the United States at the Munich Security Conference in February 2007, I have examined closely a succession of key documents produced by the American side and its close allies and discovered patent fraud and forgeries.

In my essay on the article "Containing Russia" signed but not written by Yulia Tymoshenko and published in Foreign Affairs magazine in the spring of 2007, I demonstrated how textual analysis could turn up inconsistencies that give the lie to official attribution.

The same essay pointed out the fraud perpetrated by the German Marshall Fund in the summer of 2008 when it commissioned an open letter denouncing Barack Obama's recently launched policy of re-set which was distributed to and published by The New York Times and other mainstream media as a cri de coeur from Lech Walesa, Vaclav Havel and other Cold War heroes in the struggle against Soviet domination.

Still another essay of mine devoted to the launch of the EU's Eastern Partnership Program at a summit in Prague in May 2009 pointed to the American spelling used in the Southern Corridor papers presented in the concurrent summit on the New Silk Road for energy. While interference by MS Word spellcheck cannot be totally eliminated as an explanation, the greater likelihood was that these ostensibly European documents on a new, anti-Russian energy policy were written in Washington, D.C. See my book Stepping Out of Line, pp. 315 ff.

It is with this background of interest in textual analysis that I have approached the documents presented by the film "The Browder Effect" and at once serious questions arose. In one or two documents, my reservations are at the level of tell-tale signs of Russian speakers' intervention: namely absence of or poor control over the use of articles. In the one memo where this occurs most, it could be just telegraphic style, but it stands out and differs from the other texts. Another document has one specifically Russian turn of speech. More generally, it is disconcerting that memorandums from the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) and the one memorandum on CIA letterhead are formatted identically. The most recent document, from MI6, the "Report on performing duties under special operation 'Magnitsky list'" is dated 'Jan 23, 2010,' American style; it has the American spelling of "program" and British punctuation. Such mongrel style does not usually exist in nature.

It is impossible to say what is the source of the problems cited. One possibility is that the documents, which are said to have come from the US embassy in London, were copied out by hand and mistakes were made in the transcription. Then they were retyped in a single style. Another possibility is that they are forgeries, pure and simple.

Having called attention to these issues, I hasten to add that the content of the documents as they concern Bill Browder ring true to my understanding of his possible role in the entire Magnitsky case. I say this on the basis of my personal reading of Browder during his two visits to Brussels in 2013 when I saw him and his road show exhibits up close.

In his first visit, at a public seminar on Russian political prisoners held in the European Parliament building on 5 June 2013, Browder brought a collection of spiteful witnesses intent on blackening the reputation of Vladimir Putin and his 'regime.' The seminar, which was sponsored by the neo-Liberal ALDE faction in the Parliament, was scheduled to take place one day after the publication of an Address to Foreign and Interior Ministers of the EU signed by 47 European Parliamentarians pressing on the EU executive the adoption of a law similar to the so-called Magnitsky Act.

Notwithstanding the various particular messages and particular concerns of the diverse panel, united only in its opposition to the Putin regime, the event was called to promote such a Magnitsky bill and those on the podium spoke in unison in its favor, disseminating the (manifestly false) idea that the bill enjoyed broad support within Russia and was only opposed by the regime itself. The entire proceedings were video recorded, presumably for future use in the halls of power by the event's sponsors.

At that event, Browder spoke very little. His task as master of ceremonies was to introduce his assembled witnesses. These included Mikhail Kasyanov, former prime minister and leader of the Parnas Party, together with Boris Nemtsov, the allied party to ALDE in the Russian Federation. A tearful speech was delivered by Pavel Khodorkovsky, son of the then still imprisoned oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky. But perhaps the most passionate speech was by the iconic freedom fighter Ludmila Alexeeva, former leading personality in the Moscow Helsinki Group. In her mid-80s but still very active, Alexeeva likened the environment in Russia to 1937, year of the Great Purge.

When I saw mention in one document presented by Popov of the Moscow Helsinki Group as the vehicle that MI6 used to get money to Navalny, this clicked perfectly with the reality Browder brought with his road show to Brussels on that day .

I wrote up my impressions of Browder's second visit to Brussels that year, in a November essay . On that occasion, which was nominally to present a book he financed promoting a Magnitsky Act for Europe at the Brussels Press Club, Browder once again presented assorted witnesses, including the particularly odious Vladimir Kara Murza, an unrestrained propagandist against the Putin regime and fellow-traveler of the Parnas group. What was most revealing was the Q&A session in which Browder dropped his genial mask and spoke openly about the need to punish by sanctions the million thieves and murderers who run Russia. His stated objective was regime change.

The common conclusion of my two encounters with Bill Browder was that his intensity and the time he was devoting now to putting in place anti-Russian sanctions in Europe was in no way comparable to the behavior of a top level international businessman. It was clear to me that some other game was in play. But at the time, Browder was enjoying vast popularity in the USA, was not doing badly in Europe and no one could stand up and suggest the man was a fraud, an operative of the intelligence agencies.

Whatever the final verdict may be on the documents presented by the film "The Browder Effect," it raises questions about Browder that should have been asked years ago in mainstream Western media if journalists were paying attention. Yevgeni Popov deserves credit for highlighting those questions, even if his documents demand further investigation before we come to definitive answers.


The author is the European Coordinator of The American Committee for East West Accord Ltd. His most recent book, "Does Russia Have a Future", was published in August 2015. This post first appeared on Russia Insider


American Graffiti • 2 years ago ,

I never liked Browder. His background reminds me too much of Armand Hammer (named after Arm & Hammer). He had relatives that were jailed in the US as Stalin-era NKVD spies. He renounced his US citizenship in part, for what the US did to them and the persecution of his father. The apple never falls far from the tree. Another Berezovsky-type.

Jane • 2 years ago ,

After what has happened in Ukraine, regardless of this programme; the Parnas party are going nowhere, this just adds to the commonly held negative views of people like Navalny and his liberal gang

Kjell Hasthi 2 years ago ,

- it is disconcerting that memorandums from the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) and the one memorandum on CIA letterhead are formatted identically

Simon Parkes' mother was employed by MI5 but worked for CIA. Not much difference then, same bosses.

Anja K. Boettcher Kjell Hasthi 2 years ago ,

Apart from preparing the ground for destabilizing Russia from within, the US is already planning other Ukraine-like destabilisation of Latvia, in order to further promote a further escalation of the NATO-Russian relationship up to the moment they want to enforce a Russian response to violence against the Latvian Russian minority with the use of tactile nuclear weapons which would then allow a full war-response by NATO. The want to incite a rebellion of that mino